Squids Picks: September 2013

By 12/09/2013 Blog No Comments
Scala, Kings Cross

Welcome to Squids Picks.

The secret identity of our new music maestro will never be revealed – but you can regularly catch up with their best listening and gigging advice right here.

September 2013

Outfit – 12/09/2013 – Electroworks

Liverpool’s ‘Outfit’ have just released their debut album on Double Denim Records and it’s great. It’s kind of like Hot Chip if you removed the smug, tongue in cheek lyrics and the ironic 80’s secretary glasses and gave it some depth.

Their sound is not exactly ground breaking but their understated electronica is laden with slowed down funk baselines and the kind of beautifully happy/sad melodies that Liverpudlians  seem to do so well (hear Wave Machines..much underated Liverpudlian band in my opinion)

Outfit play Londons Electrowerks next month.

See this beautifully heart warming video for their song ‘I wanted what’s best’

 

Washed Out 24/102013 – The Oval

In 2011 someone (probably an  east London disused warehouse dweller with ten haircuts in one and a long jumper) came up with the phenomenally annoying term ‘Chillwave’… Washed Out was thrown into the limelight of this wetter than wet genre and forced to spear head a scene that would die quicker than a wounded mouse in a cattery of under fed cats.

The debut Washed Out album didn’t do much to keep the dream alive for those chill wavers being on whole a fairly wishy-washy affair.

Rather than crawling off into a grave of rotting post hipster corpses, Washed Out’s Earnest Greene has returned with an album of actual songs, still soft but with a backbone, kind of like a piece of cotton wool with a pipe cleaner in it. Ladies and gents, album number two; Paracosm

The first single from the album, ‘It All Feels Right’ is a particular highlight, running over you like an audio shower, the feel good atmosphere sits just on the right side of cheesy and for me made the perfect summer anthem of 2013..

Catch Washed out at The Oval

 

Half Man Half Biscuit – Birmingham/Brighton/Northampton

I was once due to promote a show for HMHB, it was pencilled in the diary but took ages to confirm as the manager was waiting for the word  from the bass players mum as to if he could play. As they are all 40+ this amused me greatly.

HMHB have been around now since the mid eighties sporadically releasing albums with titles such as Some Call It Godcore, Trouble Over Bridgewater, Achtung Bono and Cammel Laird Socila Club. John Peel refered to them as a national treasure and I totally agree.

A HMHB gig is hilarious, they are not a comedy band (I have always found comedians with guitars immensely cringe worthy) they are just a bunch of guys singing about very English themes including being on the dole, football, coutry life and being in a ‘serious’ band. They employ the driest wit delivered in a thick drawl direct from the Wirral.

If the ale runs out at the bar though, get out…those HMHB fans get angry, I’ve seen it.

See ’24 hour garage people’ which someone has made a pleasant lego video for –

 

Wedding Present – Leeds, Glasgow, Aberdeen.

I was never that familiar with Wedding Present when growing up, I knew the name but they always fell into the category of ‘too many albums in the rack, which ever I choose will inevitably by the weak one’. However, having been a big fan of Steve Albini’s production work I was drawn to check out their album Seamonsters a couple of years ago.

On the strength of Seamonsters I bought a ticket to see them when they were touring said album last year. I was suitably blown away, for a band that have tread the boards for a number of years they played with a passion and strength I had not seen for a while.

The song Daliance in particular is one of those songs that makes you feel fine about every failed relationship and then get ridiculously drunk, which I did, with vigour after seeing them live. Great night, great band, thoroughly recommend you go check them out.

 

Julia Holter – Village Underground

Julia this year released her third album but first one on Domino, which means it was the first time that schmucks like me have heard of her.

She has been compared to Kate Bush, Joanna Newsome and Stereolab. All big chiefs.

I would say Julia Holter is the ‘high brow’ choice (for me anyway)…so if you want to impress the new classy accountant with your knowledge of ‘up and coming talent’ whilst leaning on the photocopier sipping a thimble sized cup of coffee, this is the one for you.  A future dinner party classic for chin strokers worldwide.

Catch her at Village Underground

 

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