13
Jan
10

THE RECOMMENDER – NUMBER 68

ZAMBRI

If you love me, will it be from the start? If you needed me, will we never part?”   So chimes out the lyrics on track From The Start, and it’s perhaps fair to say these words wouldn’t be out of place on a Stock, Aitken and Waterman piece of sickly pop.  However, the warped, doomy vocals sung out on this track, from this pair of Brooklyn sisters, is of the darkest cool, made more from the Patti Smith, Alison Goldfrapp and Karen O school of wizardry.  This ain’t commercial tuneage, but it is strangely and rather addictively alluring.  Echoing sounds of mighty proportions provide the backing as they rattle around each vocal, always impossible to firmly hold, like a swirl of smoke.  It’s the vocals that your ears follow for form with each song, as they are the key to each track’s melody.  And this is the kind of melody writing that’s as reassuring and adventurous as it gets.  There’s charm, love, mystery and fear rammed into every song.  Sometimes it’s perhaps a little over-powering or weird and daring, but just as it loses you in the smoke it often clears with a thudding 80s beat or a seducing refrain.  This is a proper hipster five piece, fronted by two sisters, stirring the underground scenes in New York into a whipped cream.  They join other Brooklyn songsmiths, Sleigh Bells, MNDR, Theophillus London, or the below MEN, in currently creating what we regard as the freshest and perhaps bravest genre-crossing music around at the moment.  You can grab their EP, Bang For Changes, online and the guest remixes from the likes of Does It Offend You Yeah and Death Metal Disco Scene are also well worth a look.  As for us, well, we are to be found on the next plane to Brooklyn.     (MB)

MainZambri.jpg Zambri picture by odelaybradford

Find them here:        Myspace

Hear them here:       ZAMBRI – EASIER

Hear them here:       ZAMBRI – W/SOMEBODY (DEATH METAL DISCO SCENE REMIX)

TinyRedLineForBlog.jpg picture by odelaybradford

VELO

Our expectations have been a little twisted by this new find.  To explain, firstly we were surprised to find out that they are from North London, as this sort of wonderful synth pop has been mastered so well abroad, particularly in Scandanavia and Australia.  Secondly, it nearly always has the Neon Gold, or Modular record label behind it on some level, but alas not on this occasion.  Credit where credit is due, the excellent, and by excellent we mean a truly special, genuinely interesting and well written blog, Illegal Tender, passed this lead onto us.  Not that much is known about Velo, as it seems to be early days for them.  It seems to be fronted by Sie Medway-Smith and Pete Cochrane and for music essentially made at home this is the kind of polished DIY that would impress anyone, particularly the bigger labels who’s pens are apparently poised.  There’s no re-written rules here, as this upbeat, synth-heavy, ultra-catchy sound has been dominant through 2009 and will continue through 2010.  However, because theirs is so perfectly friendly, with immaculate pop choruses that will embed themselves in your inner ears with surgical precision, you will fail to resist their charm assault.  Tidy basslines, with the kind of shiny vocals that Frankmusik attempted pretty successfully, but that haven’t truly been seen since A-Ha.  The real trick that this wonderfully glossy pop achieves is to successfully bridge the gap that stretches between the bloggers and the wider public.  It’s adorably cool.  Additionally they’ve created some delightful remixes for the likes of Ellie Goulding and Penguin Prison, both out of the Neon Gold stable – we knew they had to fit in there somewhere!    (MB)

Find them here:       Myspace

Hear them here:       VELO – WHITE NIGHTS

TinyRedLineForBlog.jpg picture by odelaybradford

MEN

Born out of Le Tigre, members JD Samsom and Johanna Fateman have shifted to this new Brooklyn collective.  Add in three new members and you discover a group of exciting, experimentalists that are as fearless as they are androgynous.  On the surface their sound seems like they’ve simply taken the clash out of Le Tigre’s electroclash and injected some camp, playful pointlessness.  However as you check through the available songs, not only does the incessant salesman somehow close the deal, but you begin to understand the enjoyable and often intricate soundscapes.  Although this new outfit has only been worn for the last few months, they’ve actually been in the business for more than a decade and clearly some lessons have been learned.  They’re like the older, more sophisticated sister to CSS.  Sure they can still bounce, flirt and smile, but each song has an evolution to it.  We all thought that Le Tigre’s Kathleen Hanna was the magic spark, but clearly there’s more when they collect the individual parts together.  This side project has removed Kathleen’s spikey, feminist punk and taken the electronica to a more obvious but irresistable, catchy place.  With these guys they don’t talk about making love, or sex, they talk about fucking.  It’s energetic, it’s frenetic, it’s moves pound and pump on the dancefloor. If the evidence from their recent support slots for Peaches and Gossip are anything to go by, you will feel a little dirty after seeing them live, which is precisely what this blog plans to do later on this week as they arrive to play Brighton.  We think we better take some wet wipes.    (MB)

Find them here:        Myspace

Hear them here:        MEN – OFF OUR BACKS

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4 Responses to “THE RECOMMENDER – NUMBER 68”


  1. 1 Nathan
    January 13, 2010 at 1:53 am

    Velo was indeed pretty slick. Liked “Perfect Twisted World” best. Will check out the others later.

  2. January 13, 2010 at 2:12 am

    I saw MEN this past June in Toronto, put on a great show. I had no idea who they were at the time, but didn’t stop me from getting drunk and dancing…but what does?

  3. 3 ken
    January 13, 2010 at 11:44 am

    MEN was my biggest discovery in 2009 and Zambri is such a interesting band! DMDS have killar remixes! Did you listen to Pegase remix for Off Our Backs? I Totally recommend it!


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