Thursday, 18 December 2014

Liu Bei | Goodness

Every so often, as if out of nowhere, comes an act worthy of oh so much more than the attention they receive. Each clash of guitar, each strike of percussive power drawing you forever in to their spellbinding emanation. London quintet Liu Bei (pronounced Lou Bay, named after a truly exceptional Chinese Warlord) are just that very act. Bringing splashes of ambitious colour to our often mundane lives, Goodness carries on wonderfully from the band's first release 'Infatuation / Atlas World' with plenty more lofty orchestral break downs laced with incredibly rich instrumentation. Just wait for that magic moment around the 2:30 mark where Richard Walters' fragility is laid bare before us as the band unleash their ebullient energy that can't be held no more - don't say I didn't warn you. I've already dubbed them one of my favourite discoveries of 2014, and now Liu Bei look set to have an exciting few months ahead as they lead us in to the new year with their debut 'GOODNESS' EP, out Feb 2nd 2015 through the newly founded Museumgoer Records. Take a listen to its towering title track streaming above. The band will hit the road in February with a number of dates to coincide with its release, full details listed below.

Live Dates
Tuesday 3rd Feb – The Cellar, Oxford  
Wednesday 4th Feb – The Shacklewell Arms, London  
Thursday 5th Feb – The Eagle Tavern, Manchester  
Friday 6th Feb – The Leadmill, Sheffield


Jack Garratt | The Love You're Given - DSCVR ONES TO WATCH 2015

Jack Garratt. If it's a name you're still unfamiliar with, I highly suggest you get yourself acquainted as it's one I can assure you'll be hearing a lot more of in '15. Having already put in a stellar effort throughout this year, Garratt has quickly become one of the most exciting new artists to break through in recent times, his latest single The Love You're Given has already seen 335,000+ soundcloud streams in less than a month after its Zane Lowe 'Hottest Record in the World' premiere alone. Here he returns with a gorgeous live rendition for Vevo's DSCVR 'Ones To Watch 2015' series, perfectly encapsulating just what his mesmerising live performances are all about as he strikes keys, thumps percussion and delivers his falsetto breaking vocals in fine style. A track that could so easily fall flat in the wrong hands played live, Jack Garratt demonstrates his undying talents proving he's far from just a studio star - the final reprise being all the evidence needed of this seamless transition between record and performance. Take a watch above with an exclusive interview streaming below seeing Garratt look ahead to an exciting new year!


Brooke Fraser | New Year's Eve

With 2014 edging ever closer in to its final stages, it seems only fitting for Brooke Fraser to release her latest track entitled New Year's Eve, lifted from her recent album 'Brutal Romantic'. Said to be written not about loneliness, but about reflection and contentment when the hype is over, take a listen above as the New Zealand native blends her delicate vocals over the tracks icy touch, all swelling in to an ocean of synth elegance. The end result really is quite haunting. Take a listen above for yourselves. New Year's Eve is taken from Brooke's fourth studio album, 'Brutal Romantic'. Be sure to check out the full list of tour dates here.


Wednesday, 17 December 2014

Laura Marling | Short Movie

Wow. It literally feels like a lifetime since I last played any Laura Marling. 2008's 'Alas, I Cannot Swim' definitely got its value's worth though, being one of those records of such timeless beauty, yet since then I've sort of never really indulged myself any further for one reason or other. Upon hearing news of her return though I'm instantly thrown back 6 years in to a nostalgic whirlwind of all my teenage memories. Back with a rawer electric sound for what will be her fifth album in seven years, 'Short Stories' is set to be released through Virgin Records on March 23rd 2015 and you can now hear its title track streaming above. Speaking of its conception Marling commented: “I realised that I hadn’t been in place for longer than two or three weeks since I was 16” she explains “I thought I wonder what will happen if I try and root myself somewhere? Look back over the past eight years”. Take a listen to 'Short Movie' above.

1. Warrior 2. False Hope 3. I Feel Your Love 4. Walk Alone 5. Strange 6. Don’t Let Me Bring You Down 7. Easy 8. Gurdjieffs’s Daughter 9. Divine 10. How Can I 11. Howl 12. Short Movie 13. Worship Me


Petite Noir | Till We Ghosts Ft. Yasiin Bey

Following on from Chess, Petite Noir returns once more with his latest single Till We Ghosts featuring Yasiin Bey, better known as Mos Def.  Even though Yannick Iluga first wrote the track back in 2012 it definitely still sounds as fresh as the day it was penned with its alternating tempo shifts and skippy uplifting percussion. Sounding like a hybrid Wild Beasts-Ghsotpoet amalgamation, Petite Noir once again crafts a wonderfully in-depth musical journey doused with his heritage and our modern day culture. Speaking of its release Yannick goes on to say "Till We Ghosts was the first track I wrote as Petite Noir and the track that got me found, so it will always mean a lot to me. Yasiin had been spending a lot of time in Cape Town and it was a privilege to meet him, and even more so to make music with him. He found this song really exciting so we got him on it and he did what he does…it’s pretty special". Take a listen above for yourselves.

Fans can Pre-Order the EP now from iTunes receiving 'Chess' as an instant download.

Tracklist: 1 – Come Inside  2 – Chess  3 – Shadows  4 – Til We Ghosts  5 – The Fall 

Kodaline | Honest (Official Lyric Video)

Following on from sharing their brand new single Honest at the start of the month, Kodaline return once more with an official lyric video to accompany its release. Directed by Stevie Russell who was responsible for the band's award winning videos for previous singles 'All I Want' and 'High Hopes', this latest effort follows our lead character as he becomes what seems to be the whistle blower in some lucrative business malpractice. Take a watch above. Honest is taken from Kodaline's second full length LP entitled 'Coming Up For Air', due out February 9th through RCA Victor. You can see a tracklist below along with a string of Feb/March live tour dates.

1. Honest 2. The One 3. Autopilot 4. Human Again 5. Unclear 6. Coming Alive 7. Lost 8. Ready 
9. Better 10. Everything Works Out In The End 11. Play The Game 12. Love Will Set You Free

Live Dates
February 2015
Sun 15th GLASGOW, Barrowlands 
Tues 17th LONDON, Roundhouse  

March 2015
Mon 9th NOTTINGHAM, Rock City 
Tues 10th SOUTHAMPTON, Guildhall 
Wed 11th NORWICH, UAE 
Thurs 12th BRISTOL, Academy 
Sat 14th BIRMINGHAM, Institute 
Sun 15th LEEDS, Academy
Mon 16th NEWCASTLE, Academy

Honest will be released February 1st 2015 through RCA Records. You can Pre-Order the single from iTunes here.


Tuesday, 16 December 2014

Tom Aspaul | Good Together

It looks like I've got some catching up to do on the Tom Aspaul front. Following a quick Google search there already seems to be some wonderful feedback from the few Soundcloud offerings, and it's with good reason too. Returning with his latest single, Good Together, the Wolverhampton born - now London based singer/songwriter has joined forces with producer GRADES to deliver a swanky futuristic pop wonder-piece, doused in R&B influence. Take a listen to the bubbly little number above for yourselves. I for one can't wait to hear more. Good Together is taken from the forthcoming 'Revelation Mixtape', set to be self-released by Tom early next year. I'll keep you posted!


The Cribs | Announce live shows for 2015

It's funny how quick time goes by. The Cribs' fifth studio record, 'In the Belly of the Brazen Bull', hit shelves just over 2 and a half years ago now and yet it still feels like only yesterday I was unwrapping the vinyl from its packaging on release day. Following their recent short-lived hiatus working on album number six, the band return with news of a seven-date run throughout February 2015. Speaking of the short tour Gary Jarman explains: "these shows were planned as the perfect way for us to debut many of the new songs and a great opportunity to give our hardcore fanbase a chance to hear these songs first in an intimate setting.”

Live February 2015  
11th NOTTINGHAM Rescue Rooms 
12th LONDON Electric Ballroom – NME Awards show **sold out** 
14th PORTSMOUTH Wedgewood Rooms 
15th BRISTOL The Fleece 
17th BIRMINGHAM The Oobleck 
20th GLASGOW King Tuts 
22nd SHEFFIELD Leadmill

Tickets go on sale on at 9.00am on Wednesday 17th December 2014, priced at £18.00 (stbf), available from: (for all shows except Glasgow: