Galaxie Quest::: An interview with Le Galaxie

Purveyors of synth based good times Le Galaxie are coming to town.  Over the past 12 odd months, they have had an amazing run of form that’s seen them develop themselves as a formidable live act who have rocked the bejaysis out of the festival circuit whilst releasing quality tunes to boot. I had a few words with them ahead of their gig in The Pav.

It’s been a pretty hectic year for Le Galaxie? What would you say the highlight has been so far?

The festival shows, probably. They’ve always been pretty special to us but this years lot (Forbidden Fruit, Vantastival, Indiependance, Castlepalooza and Electric Picnic) were off-the-scale bananas. Releasing ‘Fade 2 Forever’ was special too. 

How would you describe the band’s sound to the uninitiated?

Dancefloor tearjerkers. You’ll dance, you’ll have emotions, you might just text your childhood sweetheart and tell her she’s a bitch.

 Congrats on the fade to forever EP, really enjoying it. How was the recording process?

Quicker than our album! Things were a lot easier this time around. The songs were written so it was just a case of finding a nice space for the drums to be recorded and a nice space for everything else to fit in. But it was Laura and Elaine that completely defined were we were headed, production wise. They brought an A-Game to our usual C-Game. So that averaged us out at a B. B is good!

 The band are quickly establishing a reputation as one of the best live act’s around. What can the Cork crowd expect from ye this time out?

We’re breaking out the second drumkit for the Cork show. Usually we reserve that for festival shows but the Pavilion is an awesome little venue and I think she can handle it. Also, we bring an hours worth of tunes. 

 What have ye been listening to lately?

Totally Enourmous Extinct Dinosaurs, Grimes, Hot Toddy, Fred Falke, m83 (always), College, The Presets, Giorgio Morodor, Fletch OST, Zombi. 

 Thanks for taking the time to talk to me, lastly what else in store for 2012?

After Hard Working Class Heroes we’ll be away writing our 2nd album, then it’s two sold-out shows in Dublin’s Workman’s Club for xmas and the Roisin Dubh for New Year’s Eve! Then we’re splitting up…

Deadly serious as always the Le Galaxie lads bring their unique brand of uptempo electro fused pop to The Pavillion tonight. It’s free in and support comes from Bantum. They play Hard Working Class Heroes in Dublin on October 5 at 11.30pm in the Meeting House Square. ‘Fade 2 Forever’ is out now on the Delphi Label and available to stream and buy at www.legalaxie.net

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VR9uwogq8S8

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Bodytonic 10th b-day!

Bodytonic, the assorted bunch of promoters, artists, DJs, designers and chancers are celebrating 10 years in the music & media game. From humble beginnings in 2000 via Sonar, Electric Picnic and Berlin the boys have gone from strength to strength. Listen to an excellent podcast here recalling the highlights down the years and a pretty nifty mix too. 

Bodytonic 10 Year Podcast Tracklisting 
1. Intro 
2. Earth Wind & Fire – Lets Groove [ Black Gold ] 
3. Presence – Better Day (Vocal Mix) [ Pagan ] 
4. Salif Keita – Madan (Martin Solveig Remix ) [ Mixture ] 
5. Parris Mitchell feat. Waxmaster – Ghetto Shoutout [ Dance Mania ] 
6. Metro Area – Miura [ Environ ] 
7. Metro Area – Atmosphere [ Environ ] 
8. Mari Boine – Vuoi Vuoi Me (Henrik Schwarz Remix) [ K7 ] 
9. Louie Austen – Hoping ( Herberts High Hoping Dub ) [ Cheap ] 
10. Inland Knights – Slummin It [ Amenti ] 
11. Lawnchair Generals – One Thing [ Westbound ] 
12. Amerie – One Thing [ Not On ] 
13. The Dells – Get On Down ( Theo Parrish Edit ) [ Not On ] 
14. Willie Hutch – Brothers Gonna Work It Out [ Motown ] 
15. Motor City Drum Ensemble – Raw Cuts 3 [ Faces ] 
16. Motor City Drum Ensemble – Raw Cuts 1 [ Faces ] 
17. Kerri Chandler – Atmosphere ( Lost Dubs ) [ Ibadan ] 
18. Nathan Fake – The Sky Was Pink ( Icelandic Version ) [ Border Community ] 
19. The MFA – The Difference It Makes ( Superpitcher Remix ) [ Kompakt Pop ] 
20. MANDY v Booka Shade – Oh Superman [ Get Physical ] 
21. Telex – Moskow Diskow ( Carl Craig Remix ) [ SSR ] 
22. Joy Orbison – Hyph Mngo [ Hotflush ] 
23. Tr One – Bomby [ Bodytonic / POGO ] 
24. New Jackson – The Nightmail [ Bodytonic / POGO ] 
25. Scribble Sound System – Stay Focused [ Bodytonic / Scribble ] 
26. Kormac feat. Irvine Welsh – Another Screen [ Bodytonic / Scribble ]

Efterklang:::Live

For those of you who missed their triumphant show in Cork you can listen to them playing their new album Piramida live with the Wordless Music Orchestra at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.

efterklang-with-wordless-music-orchestra-live-in-concert

Setlist
“Hollow Mountain”
“Apples”
“Senda”
“The Living Layer”
“Vaelv”
“The Ghost”
“Black Summer”
“Between The Walls”
“So”
“Monument”
“Modern Drift” (encore)

Slowmagic::: On Yr Side

Photo: photo by Luca Venter

New release from Slowmagic. On Yr Side is another fine example of swirling electronica and mesmirising percussion from everybody’s favourite masked man. All swooping vocal samples and twisted beats , this track marries the various elements of synth and distorted electronic sound to create a real piece of quality music. He’s an artist who continues to go from strength to strength.

Beth Orton, ‘Sugaring Season’

It’s back to basics for folktronic songstress Beth Orton.
The sound on her new album can be best described as a change in style in favour of a more sparse and minimalist sound. Orton’s sixth Album is a typically  intense affair that makes great use of her vocal prowess whilst at the same time paring back her wispy sound.

Single “Something More Beautiful” is a great track as is ‘In candles’ and closing number ‘mystery’. It’s a lovely album that dispenses with the English singer songwriter’s normal beats and instead delivers a simpler more traditionally folksy affair. It works and then some . Have yourself a listen.

Sugaring Season — out Oct2.

Jesca Hoop Interview

The exceptionally talented  Jesca Hoop has released her latest album, entitled The House That Jack Built. The Manchester dwelling, Californian born singer songwriter has seen her reputation growing over the last few years. Jesca has toured with the likes of Tom Waits, Polyphonic Spree, Elbow, Andrew Bird, Eels and Peter Gabriel. Jesca is currently touring and was kind enough to take the time to answer a few questions.

Firstly  congratulations on the new album ‘The House that Jack
Built’. Can you tell me a little about how it came about?

Thank you. Well…. it was a pretty intense writing process
and I was quite isolated the whole while writing it. I wrote the songs
here in Manchester, England and they represent the very first of my
writings since my move from Los Angeles to Manchester. I brought the
rain-soaked songs to Zeitgeist Studio in LA and more specifically the
studio owner and producer of my first two full length records, Tony
Berg. Tony (his studio) comes equipped with a genius sound engineer
named Shawn Everett. Also regularly working at Zeitgeist is guitar
playing wonder Blake Mills. All three of these fellows worked with me
on my past two records in their respective roles. With “Jack” we
decided to divide the producer role between all four of ourselves
evenly. This made for a very exciting creative process. All that you
hear on the record is generated by the four of us.

How did you find the recording process?

The recording process was intense, very exciting at first with all
of the ideas whirling around and the initial rush. Then the reality
of the work set in and the weight of the task at hand given the
timeframe we were working within. It would feel heavy at times.
Very long long days. Songs can wear any arrangement… some
arrangements could classify as fashion crimes. With some of the
songs we had to try out different looks… different arrangements
before the song was “funky fresh dressed to impress ready to
party”. Other songs came together seamlessly and without any
negotiation. The recording process was fun and emotional, tense at
times but true. It was a real exploration and learning process.

You’ve toured with some big names in the last while. What was it
like to go on tour with Peter Gabriel?

Touring with Peter was a real delight. It was a real honour to sing
these songs that I have been humming along to for years. Musically
it was a very rich experience. His voice is very rich and to support him vocally and duet with him was like enjoying the most  delicious wholesome meal. A wonderful tactile experience in other
words. The New Blood Orchestra as well… what a set of immensely skilled players. That was my first time ever singing with an orchestra and I hope it’s not my last. The crew was lovely as well
and touring through South America with the Gabriel camp was a real  pleasure.

What have you been listening to lately?

Queens of the Stone Age and the Beatles…. we have been driving
from city to city and gig to gig and this is very ‘keep you awake’
driving music.

What would you say distinguishes the new album from your
previous work?

I would say the writing style. I chose to speak more directly in
these songs. They come with all the blood, sweat and tears from
where they were sourced. There is no hesitation or apology in these
songs.

The new album is a particularly personal affair. DNR and the
titular track are written about your father, were they difficult
songs to write?

They were the easiest (although painful ) to write. I had more than
enough experience to draw from and enormous amounts of emotional
fuel to deliver what i think are two of my best songs.

Thanks for your time Jesca, one last question. What else in store
for 2012?

I am touring till the end of 2012 as you may expect… amidst  the   travel I am writing my next record and keeping fit. In order to write I must enjoy life so there will be plenty of adventures and
trouble to get up to.

Thanks a million Jesca, her new album ‘The House That Jack Built’ is now available on i-tunes and from all good record stores. Tour dates are available on her website http://www.jescahoop.com/news

Ruairí and the Owls ::: Fishing in your Dark

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So you co-write and play bass for a band. You’re always noodling away writing solo material, so what do you do next? Well if you’re Ruairi Connolly then you get a few friends together who also happen to be musicians (Leanne Doherty /Betty lee and the blondes and Conor Crampsie/Exit pursued by bears) and you throw together your noodling and record yourself a side project. It helps if the record happens to be rather spiffing. That was 2011’s his debut E.P ‘Rip through her sky’ recorded as ‘Owl Parliament’, now what? Well they’re back, they’ve changed their name (Ruari and the Owls), theres a new band member on board (Mike Hamill) and they have a new record.

Fishing in your dark‘ is the new release from Connolly and co. and the good news is they’ve released another perfectly formed EP. Single ‘Let you out‘ is a tremendous song, its euphoric pop with an undertone of soulfulness that goes a long way. You get two singers for the price of one on this track with Stevie Martin AKA ‘Rainy Boy Sleep’ chirping in on proceedings. Opening track ‘Vapour’ is the kind of power pop Belle & Sebastian used to make. It’s a catchy number that burns its way into your mind. ‘Tired Eyes’ shifts down a gear and is more of an anthemic /ballady number that is perfectly pleasant and shows the outfits range. It’s a lovely track. Last number ‘Boomerang’ deals with the familiar theme of lost love and closes off proceedings nicely.

The Limavady native has fashioned an interesting sophomore effort that’s chockfull of decent melodies and solid lyrics. Leanne’s backing vocals compliment Connolly’s vocals well and Crampsie’s percussion really ties things together well. Ruairí and the Owls has been getting plenty of good write-ups and on the evidence of this release they’re well deserved. They’re an act I shall be making an effort to catch live. I suggest you do the same.

http://musicreviewunsigned.com/RuairiandtheOwls.html

Introducing:::Autumn Owls.

Autumn Owls formed and began preparing ideas in 2007. The Dublin three-piece consist of Gary McFarlane (guitar, vocals), Adam Browne (bass) and Will Purtill (drums).Dublin’s very own answer to Wilco are adding to their first two EPs with a long player out next month.

Autumn Owls are pleased to announce their debut album,Between Buildings, Toward The Sea, which will be the first release from Epitonic.com’s new label, on October 16.