Posts Tagged ‘La Roux




Far away from the X-Factor, Simon Cowell-induced coma that he calls music, it’s well worth noting that in recent years, in the UK, we’ve had a perfectly efficient factory line producing female pop stars of the future.  Bright, shiny new ones throughout each year.  Just take a look back at the BBC Sound Of 2010 Poll from January, in which this supposed barometer tipped it’s hat to the stars of the year ahead.  They predicted in first and second place two female solo pop artists in Marina & The Diamonds and Ellie Goulding, both of whom have gone on to further successes.  Look back yet another year and you will see Little Boots and La Roux, or back further for Adele and Duffy , all of which adorned their respective year’s lists of fancy soothsaying.  So year on year there is a hotbed of female talent in this country, but how does Hannah Yadi compare, for comparing is something any exciting new female talent will unfortunately get quite a lot of, especially if they’re actually any good.  Yadi is certainly a box of tricks and a delightfully talented one at that, having previously heard her in other capacities, with Will Betts in the band Hella Cholla, as well as her guest vocals with the dance duo Eskimo Twins.  Upon turning our ears to her solo work we first noticed that the standards were also reaching high with this project too.  There was an array of feathers on show, with her sound very much slotting into the pop cap, with piano-led tunes, twinkling synthetic beats and the vocals pushed front and centre.  Choruses are stomped through, whilst the verses show off her range of singing abilities, where comparisons to the likes of Alison Goldfrapp, Tahita Bulmer, or upon reflection a bit of Eddie Reader, will no doubt come to mind.  Utilising pop traditions is admirable, but is there anything that makes her stand out?  Her dark good looks steal your attention through the lens and clearly come from her Algerian heritage, but her love of warping out North African instruments and utilising a more percussive beat will be what gives her the required edge.  Sadly, this tribal tinkering she talks of still needs to find the foreground, but her blend of common pop and all it’s structural strengths, with this authentic, atypical ingredient certainly has potential. With each new demo that appears she seems to ride along more confidently and subsequently creates more intricate and attractive performances.  Like all of the truly special female pop artists, past or present, the comparisons with others off the lengthy production line is actually irrelevant, for we know they always break the mould when it comes to genuine talent.    (MB)

Find her here:         Myspace

Hear her here:         YADI – RUSSIAN LOVE

Hear her here:         YADI – GUILLOTINE



Photo by Kid Paparazi


It’s been a little while since we did a ‘remix special’ here on The Recommender. Previous editions, including the likes of Soulwax, DiscoTech, Bloc Party and The Golden Filter, proved to be amongst some of the most popular posts we’ve ever had on this blog. This only goes to prove the popularity and power of a good remix.

These days, checking the Hype Machine backs this up, as it’s famous ‘Top 100’ blogged tracks usually has tons of them. It’s something that we think is a little over-cooked here on The Recommender, so we make sure we reserve our ‘remix posts’ for only the finest, most outstanding efforts. This is a category that THE TWELVES slot into very neatly.

A very busy duo from the Brazillian shores of Rio De Janeiro, they bring an excellent sunny side to everything they remix. Often adding more Pop to an already Popped tune, their blends are undoubtedly still for the club floor. They have a positive bassline to all their selections, whilst allowing the magic of the original track to still remain, (often keeping most of the vocals), whilst they stir in some Funked tweaks for good measure.

Selected highlights are attached below for you to judge for yourselves. They regularly tour the world’s club scenes so you will undoubtedly be able to catch them live soon. The question is, are they true pretenders to Soulwax and DiscoTech‘s mighty remix authority?

LA ROUXIN FOR THE KILL (The Twelves Remix)        (ysi)
NOAH AND THE WHALEBLUE SKIES (The Twelves Remix)       (ysi)
ASOBI SEKSUTHURSDAY (The Twelves Remix)        (ysi)
A-HATAKE ON ME (The Twelves Remix)        (ysi)
FLEET FOXESWHITE WINTER HYMNAL (The Twelves Remix)        (ysi)
THE VIRGINSRICH GIRLS (The Twelves Remix)      (ysi)
RADIOHEADTHERE THERE (The Twelves Remix)       (ysi)
ZEIGEISTHUMANITARIANISM (The Twelves Remix)       (ysi)

Please take a second to leave a comment, either letting us know which track is your favourite, or if you know of any other decent Twelves remixes that we’ve perhaps missed, as this sort of information lets us know what people are enjoying currently. Thanks, as always…



Here’s yet another fresh catch for you to digest. The good ship Recommender has trawled the open oceans of music once more and hooked onto some meaty feasts for your ears, so quit waiting and tuck in…


We want to wave our fingers enthusiastically in the direction of a beautiful musical songsmith that we have fallen in love with. Strictly speaking we only write about artists that are a maximum of one album in, as we try to focus exclusively on ‘new music’. However, Elvis’  second album, ‘Elvis Perkins In Dearland‘, is actually his first in this current band under their full name. Elvis Perkins, the solo artist released his debut, ‘Ash Wednesday‘, on his own, hence shoe-horning him into The Recommender. (It’s not like we actually need to make excuses for an artist this good anyway!?) It’s music from the same school as Bon Iver, Bob Dylan, The Band, or Bright Eyes, (or perhaps anyone else beginning with B!? – ed). We took note that he’s also the son of the actor Anthony Perkins, who played Norman Bates of Psycho fame, but make of that what you will. He crafts wonderful Folk-Rock music of the timeless kind that you feel you always knew, that slowly introduces each instrument as the song comfortably plods along . Melodic and intelligent, it’s like the soundtrack to a good Jeff Bridges movie. It’s written to be taken in pondering doses with coffee in hand on a lazy, thoughtful Sunday. We attach an mp3 and a wonderful video directed by Sean Pecknold, (brother of Robin Pecknold out of Fleet Foxes).

Find him here:        Myspace

Hear him here:        ELVIS PERKINS IN DEARLAND – SHAMPOO (ysi)


These days getting backed by the white-hot label, Neon Gold, is always bound to prick up the ears of any trendy bloggers. Being showcased at the label’s recent Notting Hill party was a tick in all the right boxes, especially seeing as it was alongside Marina & The Diamonds, plus a DJ set by Frankmusik, with who Clock Opera more than share a sense of bewildering Pop sensibilities. And so with our ears truly pricked, label owners Derek and Lizzie, announced this amazing new act on the scene. Singer, Guy Connelly, has a beautiful drifting voice, full of emotion, that hovers over the chiming, often orchestral Pop backing. Songs build up and tower over you, yet simultaneously seem untouchable, delicate and ethereal. As the beats kick in their true taste for Pop reveals itself, or ‘Chop Pop’, as Neon Gold called it, perhaps referencing it’s samples and claps. That description hides the occasional slow, haunting strings, or ghostly nature of Guys vocals, but Pop it is nonetheless. We list the tune, Once And For All below, as it sounds like the perfect song. Involving, emotive, danceable, catchy and strong. Get ready to spend the rest of your days clock-watching.

Find them here:         Myspace

Hear them here:        CLOCK OPERA – ONCE AND FOR ALL (ysi)


It’s always going to help getting yourself on the NME Radar Tour that rolls around each year and it’s during the 2008 merry-go-round that we first got see this London pair live. This followed the notice we had taken of these fella’s remixes of smartly chosen La Roux (attached below), The Presets and Vitallic. All of these were excellent, but more rewards were found once our investigative natures cracked open their box of original material. Classed under Italo-Disco by most, due to the heavy Depeche Mode influences, but we think they’re darker than the phrase Disco suggests, finding more in common with the Electro sounds Midnight Juggernauts provide so well. Creating giant tunes that last for 7 or 8 minutes at a time, they feel like a DJ set. Pair that up with the echoing vocals and their dramatic showmanship and it’s a mesmerising gig should you ever get the chance. Sometimes slowed down (‘Soul Transplant’), it is at its best when its pumped up (‘We’re Back’). If you like your music to be slightly dark, slightly camp, with a fuzzy bassline at the front of everything, then we suggest you get in the queue for this trendy duo now.

Find them here:         Myspace

Hear them here:        HEARTBREAK – WE’RE BACK (ysi)
Hear them here:        LA ROUX – IN FOR THE KILL (Heartbreak Remix)      (ysi)

As our nets cast wider and wider around the globe we are able to bring you more and more from the global scenes. Connections are popping up all the time and there’s a buzz in The Recommender office. Pop back real soon for more selected highlights.




Yeah Christmas is a great laugh, and it’s a welcome holiday break as the winter kicks into full swing, but for live gigs its a bit sparse. During this period there’s been plenty of club action, especially over the New Year celebrations, but nothing of any outstanding note. So it’s with a welcome note that we swing into 2009 with a fresh look ahead to what the town of Brighton brings us. Being one of the finest towns in the UK for new music, particularly Spring and Summer when it really gets into it’s major party mood with mucho festivals and circuits going on.

You don’t even have to look beyond January to catch one of the hottest artists that’s in true blog-ascendancy at the moment. We’ve already posted about her back in The Recommender 17, but as with all artists there’s nothing quite like seeing them up close and personal. And it doesn’t get much closer and more personal than at the New Hero club. Once again Henry’s excelled himself with his ability to catch onto the UK’s pop zeitgeist by booking up an artist so hot it’s being advised you wear your non-flammable undies. La Roux follows a long list of attractive, fresh pioneering acts to New Hero, such as Little Boots, or Surkin, or The Golden Filter, to name just three of many, many amazing performers in recent months. Get down there to witness the truly talented electropop sensation, with her unique style, vocals and sound, before she heads on to a larger tour nationwide supporting Lilly Allen.

ACT:                      LA ROUX 
VENUE:                 NEW HERO, Lower Dyke Road, Brighton
COST:                  £ 6.50
DATE:                   Friday 30th January 2009
WEBSITE:            Myspace

This band has been around since 2000 and it is with their 9th album, Merriweather Post Pavilion, due out next week, that they seem to be gathering attention once again in the blog world. With a boat packed ram-jammed full of blog hype, they floated over our horizon and into view. At first listen you won’t be sure of the hype, with a mixed bag of sounds. Part psychedelic pop, part mashed up soundscape, their songs always seem to start out like a crash of randomness, but then out of the bleeps comes a beat and a tune that builds up to a formula that then works. Like the weirder side of any Super Furry Animals song, or if you like MGMT’s left-field side and you take to anything that’s experimenting changing the face of things, rather than following anything else, then this Baltimore 4-piece should tick your box. Gigs around the release of a new album always seem to get an extra 10% out of the band in my experience, so catch them while they are burning bright.

ACT:                     ANIMAL COLLECTIVE 
VENUE:                CONCORDE 2, Marine Parade, Brighton Beach
COST:                  £ 7.00
DATE:                   Thursday 15th January 2009
WEBSITE:            Myspace

We are already getting hints and whispers about the upcoming artists getting booked up for some of Brighton’s excellent, (and numerous), Spring and Summer festivals, so plenty more will soon arrive on this Gig List, so make sure you head back here when you can.




Wipe your feet on the welcome mat, let me hang up your coat, so you can throw your arms open for a great big Recommender hug. Welcome home to all your new music needs. Now kick back and try these three on for size…

She hasn’t quite produced enough yet to warrant getting onto our upcoming post about the ‘Scene Queens’, where we will list a collection of pioneering female artists currently on show. However, this is one female solo artist that ticks many of those same boxes – talented, pioneering, unique, independent and super-cool! Once I’ve got my ears wrapped around more of her tunes and perhaps caught her live we may have to slot her into that same group. For now she at least deserves a Recommender posting. She’s touted as a blend of The Knives and The Cocteau Twins. Not half-bad eh!? As if that isn’t enough of a sweetner, her electric beat-clap pop is getting released through the uber-cool French label Kitsune. The blog world has gone crazy for her. Conclusion;  2009 = MASSIVE!!!


Find her here:     Myspace

Here her here:    LA ROUXFASCINATION     (ysi)


We are taking one step back away from the guitars with this entry, but it’s only a small one, as this German DJ is the latest remixer on the block that’s slicing up our favourite guitar bands and electronic acts to create something very special indeed. His choices are to be respected as he merrily chops up the likes of Sigur Ros, Bloc Party, Digitalism (linked below), and MGMT with truly outstanding results. It’s powerful, thumping electro blended with the usual bleeps and crunchy excellence in all the right places. Described as a true rising star DJ, he’s grabbing worthy attention from the best of blogs around Europe.


Find them here:     Myspace   

Hear him here:   DIGITALISMTAKEN AWAY (MMMATHIAS Remix)     (ysi)

Another post from The Recommender and yet another group that hail from Australia! To stand out in the variety of brilliant Oz scenes requires some doing and this Melbourne threesome are producing tunes that show some truly excellent talent. A little bit Daft Punk, a little bit Mylo. These guys have stuck together since their school days and the polished music they create shows a great understanding of what makes a tune bang. Making brave remixes for anybody from P Diddy to Digitalism, as well as my favourite Bloc Party remix, they show no fear and bring a four-beat to the dancefloor that’s totally irresistible. However, it is their original works with tracks like Salami, Rays and Bluebird (listed below) that I’ve truly fallen for.

Find them here:     Myspace

Hear them here:     LA MODEBLUEBIRD     (ysi)

If we have enjoyed one long amazing year of music in 2008, then it’s fair to say that 2009 is lining up to be the mother of all parties! New music creeps up on the horizon every day and we couldn’t be more buoyant about what we see on the horizon. Keep on checking back for plenty more hand-plucked bundles of joy in the coming days, weeks and months ahead.


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January 2021



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CLUB SMITH (Previously known as THE HAIR)


Mike Bradford (MB) - Creator and Contributor (UK)

Olivia Gable (OG) - Contributor (Austin, USA)

Matt Allfrey (MA) - Contributor (UK)

Natasha Ryan - Photographer (New York, USA)