(image courtesy of The Great Escape)
At the weekend, music press and fans alike headed to the British seaside for The Great Escape, Europe’s leading festival for new music. Here’s what I discovered after a bit of musical beach combing. Thank you Brighton. Thank you Great Escape.
The musical vision of former Mint Chicks member Ruban Nielson started as an anonymous home-recording project that fused psychedelia, soul, choppy percussion and funk. New album ‘II’ builds on the break-beat, junk-shop charm the 32-year-old multi-instrumentalist and songwriter came to be renowned for following his self-titled 2011 debut, and signals the solidification of Unknown Mortal Orchestra’s position as an endlessly intriguing, brave psychedelic band. UMO is unafraid to dig deeper than the rest to lock into their intoxicating, opiate groove and bring rock’n’roll’s exaggerated myths to life.
Deap Valley are a rock duo formed in Los Angeles, California in 2011. The group consists of Lindsey Troy (guitar, vocals) and Julie Edwards (drums). In the heart of Silver Lake, California, they bonded over their love of music, specifically the blues and hence, Deap Vally was formed.
Phosphorescent delighted the crowd with ragged country, bittersweet southern gospel and forlorn folk-ish drone.
Susanne Sundfør continues the expansion of her musical universe with her new album, The Silicone Veil (2012), a follow-up to the critically acclaimed, platinum-selling The Brothel (2010), which spent 30 weeks in the Norwegian album charts and sold more than 40 000 copies.
Parquet Courts are an American punk rock band based in Brooklyn, New York, that formed in late 2010. Worth the hype.
Aptly named for such a festival, Beach Fossils is a Brooklyn-based group, formed in early 2009 by Dustin Payseur. Their debut LP Beach Fossils met with favourable reviews and became known for its jangly, single note guitar style, dusted with summer-fueled romance.
Continuing the theme of the sea, Current Swell make roots rook as beautiful and as bright as British Columbia, the band’s hometown.
Mac DeMarco, formerly Makeout Videotape, is the anti-thesis to your stereotypical singer-songwriter. Disregarding the seriously somber moments, he replaces them with whimsical and youthful spontaneity, whilst retaining the endearing and subtle commentaries that exude his familiarity.
Glitches offered “organic imperial grooves”.
Evelinn Trouble (born Linnéa Racine in 1989) grew up in Zürich, Switzerland where she still lives. Her influences are many and change along with the tides, so do the bands she performs with. She started her stage career in a cover band called Lorry that performed mainly Radiohead and Placebo songs, and later moved on to Holy Saint Change, an acoustic trio that performed Trouble’s then new, more quiet material that followed Arbitrary Act (2008). With the release ofTelevision Religion (2011) she then returned to more punk-ish ways.
The Danish singer and multi-instrumentalist who goes by the name Indians, a.k.a. Søren Løkke Juul, makes music that retains its intimacy even as it seems to sprawl out into space.
Hard to place into any easy genre classification but unique and beautiful, Husky Rescue’s sound reconstitutes pieces of alt. country, depressive disco, and pop into an incomparably distinctive, cinematic universe, laced with lyrics of love delivered with a longing melancholy.