Towards the end of last year two things hit me hard: I was spending more time deleting emails than listening to music and Haim topped the Blog Sound 2013 poll.
Now it’s always nice to receive email but there’s only so much inappropriate and unsolicited messages one man can take. And amongst the deluge of dross (commercial hip-hop, piss-poor Croatian synth-wave, the fourth re-send of that generic introduction from the PR intern, more Croatian synth-wave) I was probably overlooking some utter new music gems. And surely Haim is self-explanatory? When a new music bloggers poll IN WHICH I TOOK PART selects the same band as BBC Sound of 2013, the game really is up isn’t it?
But instead of doing the honourable, clear-cut thing, I took a six month break. Shilly-shallying indecision. So I feel the need to apologise and properly, definitively draw things to a close.
So if I’d been active I would have written about: The Android Angel, Asian Babes, The Doomed Bird Of Paradise, Emperor Zero, Fire Island Pines, Haiku Salut, Hookworms, The Indelicates, Jacco Gardner, H Hawkline, Literature Thieves, Meadow, Parquet Courts, Psychic Ills, Rat Bit Kid, Mat Riviere, Sweet Baboo, Toxie and The Wobbly Hearts. Plus those delivering as-expected excellent debuts: Brown Brogues, Eagle Owl, Stephen Hudson. But especially that Trwbador album – now that’s a leap forward! And if there was ever a theme to this blog, it was celebrating the richness of excellent music that is overlooked, the gems that should be better known and more widely heard. Like the above list.
And some contributions from Twitter for you to consider of excellent music from the first half of 2013: Boards Of Canada (@LizardVanilla), The National (@GirlOnATrain), Phosphorescent, TE Morris, Dawn McCarthy & Bonnie 'Prince' Billie, The Besnard Lakes (@UraGrayMalkin) and Ulrich Schnauss (@GoldenFable).
But what might be my favourite to top all the above is the Threatmantics long-player “Kid McCoy”. Partly it has to be said because it so overlooked and appears only on physical sale in Spillers Records in Cardiff but mainly because it’s just such catchy and clever fun. Angular arty folk-punk but with big melodies, a big heart and some surreal silliness to boot. So I now finally leave you with the words of 'Archaeopteryx' from that album: “Get your own song... there’s nothing going on here”. Sorry for drawing it out.