"Sing me to sleep and then leave me alone"

Το "Honeybee girls" είναι ένας δίσκος που σε συγκινεί και σε ανταμείβει με την αμεσότητά του. Η μελωδικότητα του πιάνου διαποτίζει τις ενορχηστρώσεις, κινητοποιώντας πλήρως τις αισθήσεις σου, ενώ ορισμένες φορές επιχειρούνται αλλαγές ύφους με αποτέλεσμα να ευδοκιμούν κιθαριστικές pop εκρήξεις. Οι συνθέσεις περιβάλλονται από μία εύθραυστα ρομαντική και σκοτεινά ονειρική ατμόσφαιρα, ενώ περιστρέφονται γύρω από τις έξοχες ερμηνευτικές ικανότητες και τους ποιητικούς, πλούσιους σε συναισθήματα στίχους της πολυτάλαντης Shannon Wright (η οποία μετράει στη δισκογραφία περισσότερα από δέκα χρόνια). Μέσα σε 30 λεπτά πετυχαίνει να αφήσει το μαγικό αποτύπωμά της.



"...bury me under ice, smother me under the eyes and snow"

Soap&Skin - Brother of sleep // Cynthia // Spiracle // Mr. Gaunt PT 1000

Soap&Skin - Turbine womb (from 'Lovetune for vacuum')



"...make small differences in each other's lives"

Οι Maybeshewill συχνά χρησιμοποιούν στις συνθέσεις τους, αλλά και στα remix που επιμελούνται samples με αποσπάσματα από ταινίες. Ακολουθεί μία κατατοπιστική λίστα:

In another life, when we are both cats
από την ταινία "The rules of attraction" του Roger Avary

- Lauren, wait. Hey, wait. Lauren.
- Oh my god.
- Can't we talk?
- No!
- Lauren, don’t walk... Hey! I really did try to kill myself! Just before I faked it.
- Wow. Sean it’s over. - No it’s not!
- Yeah it is. I’m in love with somebody else.
- Who?
- My old boyfriend Victor, and that’s none of your fuckin’ business, actually!
- What? Fuckin’ Victor? - Yeah.
- What... the fuck are you writing me letters?
- Wow. Deal with it Sean. It’s over. Rock and roll.
- Lauren, I wanna know you.- What does that mean? Know me. Know me. Nobody knows anyone else, ever!


Not for want of trying
από την ταινία "Network" του Sidney Lumet

Everybody knows things are bad. It’s a depression. Everybody’s out of work, or scared of losing their job. The dollar buys a nickel’s worth. Banks are going bust. Shopkeepers keep a gun under the counter. Punks are running wild in the street, and there's nobody anywhere seems to know what to do. There’s no end to it. We know the air is unfit to breathe and our food is unfit to eat. We sit watching our TVs while some local newscaster tells us that today we had 15 homicides and 63 violent crimes, as if that’s the way it is supposed be. We know things are bad. Worse than bad. They’re crazy. It's like everything everywhere is going crazy, so we don’t go out any more. We sit in the house, and slowly the world we live in is getting smaller. All we say is "Please, at least leave us alone in our living rooms. Let me have my toaster and my TV, my steel-belted radials and I won’t say anything. Just leave us alone." Well, I’m not going to leave you alone. I want you to get mad! I don’t want you to protest and I don't want you to riot. I don't want you to write to your congressman. I don't know what to tell you to write. I don’t know what to do about the depression, the inflation, the Russians, the crime in the streets... All I know is that first you’ve got to get mad! You’ve got to say "I’m a human being, goddamn it! My life has value!". So... I want you to get up now. I want all of you to get up out of your chairs. I want you to get up right now and go to the window, open it and stick your head out and yell "I’m as mad as hell and I’m not going to take this any more!"


Co-Conspirators
από την ταινία "The Verdict" του Sidney Lumet


Well... You know, so much of the time we're just lost. Don't think "God. Tell us what is like. Tell us what is true". There is no justice. The rich win, the poor are powerless. We become tired of hearing people lie and after a time we become dead, a little dead. We think of ourselves as victims - and we become victims. We become... We become weak, we doubt ourselves, we doubt our beliefs, and we doubt the law. But today you are the law.


This time last year
από την ταινία "I ♥ huckabees" του David O. Russell

- Clothes, videos, toys, cheeseburgers, cars, a functioning economy.
- You can still have a functioning economy and preserve open spaces with a little planning.
- Yeah. - Socialism.
- Complete disaster.
- Theodore Roosevelt was a socialist? And Yeats? - Theodore Roosevelt...
- Henry David Thoreau, Robinson Jeffers, the National Geographic Society, all socialists?
- You're talking about socialism.
- No, I'm not. I'm talking about not covering every square inch of populated America with houses and strip malls until you can't remember what happens when you stand in a meadow at dusk.
- What happens in the meadow at dusk?- Everything. - Nothing! - Everything!


Our history will be what we make of it
από τις ταινίες "Good night, and good luck." του George Clooney
και "Young Winston" του Richard Attenborough


Our history will be what we make of it. And if there are any historians about 50 or 100 years from now - and there should be preserved the kinescopes of one week of all three networks - they will there find, recorded in black and white and in color, evidence of decadence, escapism, and insulation from the realities of the world in which we live. We are currently wealthy, fat, comfortable, and complacent. We have a built-in allergy to unpleasant or disturbing information. Our mass media reflect this. But unless we get up off our fat surpluses and recognize that television in the main is being used to distract, delude, amuse, and insulate us, then history will take its revenge and retribution will not limp in catching up with us.


It may be that the human race is doomed, never to learn from its mistakes. We are the only animals on this globe who periodically set out to slaughter each other for the best, the noblest, the most inescapable of reasons. We know better. But we do it again and again in generation after generation. It may be that our empire, too, is doomed - like all those that have gone before it - to continue to spew and waste its best blood on foreign soil, no matter what we say or do in this place, or think, or believe, or have learned from history. But, thank God for us.


Sing the word hope in four-part harmony
Το παρακάτω κείμενο γράφτηκε αποκλειστικά για το κομμάτι

We are young, confident, affluent, and have no memory of tougher times. We’ve grown up in an era of never ending financial growth, and have expected things to stay that way. We’ve grown up in owner occupied homes with total acceptance of technology, global warming and terrorism. Our whole society has been based on consumerism for the past 15 years, making us dream consumers, yet we don’t know the difference between a credit card and a debit card, and we have no idea how much a pint of milk costs. On average we have 800 illegally downloaded songs, and 1 on 8 of us spends more than 100 pounds a month on our mobile phone bill. We’ve never read a newspaper, and we’ve never used our chance to vote. We allow our governments to make decisions without giving us all the facts. They send troops abroad who will die in order that we can steal resources from the people who have them. People who meant us little or no harm until we invaded their country. We allow those troops to commit horrendous atrocities and hang our alleged enemies for much less. We’ve spent years entrusting our futures to our parents, our governments, the banks and the corporations who have continually lobbied for their own interests, and we’ve let them make selfish decisions that have left our society teetering on the edge of ruin. We’re blinded from the information that would really shock us by stories of sex and sleeze which doesn’t make the smallest difference to our lives, and so we have no desire to do anything about the things that really do. We’ve watched as greed wipes billions of the worlds stock markets, destroys jobs and lives, and proves that capitalism is just as corruptible by human nature as communism. These are tough times but we seek solace in our friends and Co-Conspirators, we make small differences in each other’s lives, and dream that we can make real progress.


Worriedaboutsatan - The butterfly effect (Maybeshewill remix)
από την ταινία "Contact" του Robert Zemeckis

I had an experience. I can't prove it, I can't even explain it, but everything that I know as a human being, everything that I am tells me that it was real. I was given something wonderful, something that changed me forever. A vision of the universe, that tells us, undeniably, how tiny, and insignificant and how rare, and precious we all are. A vision that tells us that we belong to something that is greater then ourselves, that we are *not*, that none of us are alone! I wish I could share that. I wish, that everybody, if only for one moment, could feel that awe, and humility, and hope. That continues to be my wish.



"...history will take its revenge"

Μπροστά σε ένα περιορισμένο κοινό (περίπου 150 άτομα συγκεντρώθηκαν στο Principal) οι Maybeshewill αποδείχθηκαν απολαυστικά θορυβώδεις χάρη στα drums και στις κιθάρες με τις metal αποχρώσεις. Επέλεξαν κομμάτια από τις δύο δισκογραφικές τους κυκλοφορίες ("Not for want of trying" και "Sing the word hope in four-part harmony") με τα υπέροχα samples από αποσπάσματα ταινιών, χαρίζοντάς μας ένα ωριαίο, συναυλιακό ελιξίριο αναζωογόνησης. Μοναδικό ψεγάδι η έλλειψή μουσικού που θα αναλαμβάνει να παίξει πλήκτρα (καθοριστική η συμβολή τους στα μελωδικά σημεία), τα οποία και μόνο ήταν προηχογραφημένα. Μπορεί να μην είναι σπουδαίοι σαν τους 65daysofstatic, αλλά πρόκειται για ένα πολύ καλό συγκρότημα με προοπτικές. Παρά το λιγοστό κόσμο έδειξαν ενθουσιασμένοι με την παρουσία τους στη Θεσσαλονίκη και μετά το τέλος του set τους έλαβαν παρατεταμένα χειροκροτήματα.

Co-conspirators
Last time this year
The Paris Hilton sex tape
Ιn another life, when we are both cats (από το EP "Japanese spy transcript", το οποίο θα συνοδεύει τη νέα έκδοση του "Not for want of trying")
C.N.T.R.C.K.T
Seraphim & cherubim
Accept and embrace
How to have sex with a ghost
This time last year
He films the clouds pt. 2
Not for want of trying

Οι Crippled black phoenix με 8 μέλη επί σκηνής είχαν πιο πλούσιο ήχο (και διάθεση για επικοινωνία). Με βάση την ακουστική κιθάρα και τα φωνητικά του Joe Volk, μεγαλύτερης διάρκειας και με ορχηστρική αισθητική συνθέσεις, οι οποίες κλιμακώνονταν σταδιακά (με την έμπνευση να αντλείται από κλασικά και proggressive rock συγκροτήματα της δεκαετίας του '70) και απαιτούσαν την προσοχή του ακροατηρίου. Μουσική χωρίς περιορισμούς, με διαφορετικές εκφάνσεις του ήχου, με τα πλήκτρα και το τσέλο να χαρίζουν λάμψη στις ενορχηστρώσεις. Παρουσίασαν ένα νέο τραγούδι, με τίτλο "Troublemaker" (ξεκινούν ηχογραφήσεις στις αρχές του 2010) και δύο διασκευές, η μία στο "Bells of the river" του Jeffrey Lee Pierce (σύντομα θα κυκλοφορήσει tribute cd) και η άλλη σε ένα πασίγνωστο ελληνικό τραγούδι. Στο φινάλε αύξησαν την ένταση με τα "444" και "Burnt Reynolds" (με τη συμμετοχή του κοινού), ενώ για encore επιφύλαξαν το σχεδόν 20λεπτο, εξαιρετικό "Τime of ye life/Βorn for nothing/Paranoid arm of the narcoleptic empire".

My enemies I fear not, but protect me from my friends
Rise up and fight
Goodnight, Europe
You take the devil out of me
Whissendine
Song for the loved
Human nature dictates the downfall of humans
The whistler
Bells of the river (Jeffrey Lee Pierce's cover)
Troublemaker (νέο τραγούδι)
444
Burnt Reynolds

encore
Time of ye life/born for nothing/paranoid arm of the narcoleptic empire

ΥΓ. Σύντομα αναμένεται η συμμετοχή τους σε cd του Mojo με εναλλακτικές αναγνώσεις τραγουδιών του "The Wall" των Pink Floyd.





"A thousand charms"

Με το βλέμμα καρφωμένο στον ουρανό, τα ορχηστρικά σύννεφα αρχίζουν να πυκνώνουν και να σκουραίνουν βυθίζοντας το τοπίο στο σκοτάδι, οι πρώτες ηλεκτρισμένες ψιχάλες πέφτουν, ξεσπούν βροντές, πληθαίνουν οι κραυγές, τα ουρλιαχτά και τα παραμορφωμένα, γεμάτα συναίσθημα φωνητικά από τον Chris Spencer, οι μελωδίες χάρη στο πιάνο, το όργανο και τα πλήκτρα του Ari Benjamin Meyers προσπαθούν να εκτονώσουν την ένταση, επιφυλάσσονται όμως αναπάντεχες ηχητικές εκρήξεις από τα τύμπανα και ισχυρότερες κιθαριστικές καταιγίδες. Οι τίτλοι τέλους του "Halo" οδηγούν στην σταδιακή κάθαρση από το θυελλώδης σκηνικό που προηγήθηκε.

  • Οι Celan είναι οι Chris Spencer των Unsane, Ari Benjamin Meyers των Einsturzende Neubauten και των Redux orchestra, Niko Wenner, κιθαρίστας των αγαπημένων Oxbow, Phil Roeder και Franz Xaver των Γερμανών flu.ID, οι οποίοι διαλύθηκαν πέρυσι.
  • Η σύνθεση του συγκροτήματος προμήνυε ένα πειραματικά θορυβώδες έργο τέχνης. Συνέβη!
  • Η δημιουργική διεργασία διάρκησε δύο εβδομάδες.
  • Το όνομά τους είναι σαφής αναφορά στο Ρουμάνο με εβραϊκή καταγωγή ποιητή Paul Celan που έγραφε στη γερμανική γλώσσα.
  • I’ve always wanted to play in another band that’s different than Unsane. Something more musically developed that is also able to exploit the raw noise from my neighborhood. The whole collaboration turned out better than I could have hoped.Chris Spencer



"My verses pertain to that truth we all feel at gut. World’s corrupt… so now what?"

"Our debut EP 'Negro necro nekros' and 'From filthy tongue of gods and griots' were about us starting out, sometimes getting sounds more than songs. 'Absence' was the book on how extreme you could go. 'Abandoned language' had more ambient moments, and was the end of that chapter of writing it all either heavy or mellow. 'Gutter tactics' is more us continually doing some early hip-hop shit but with the attitude of the Melvins or Black Sabbath."
Oktopus

Οι Dälek διατηρούν τη φιλοσοφία του hip hop & στο "Gutter tactics" (κυκλοφόρησε στις αρχές του έτους) και μπλέκουν δημιουργικά ρίμες με ετερόκλητες μουσικές δομές. Στίχοι με πολιτικό και κοινωνικό περιεχόμενο μέσα από τους οποίους απεικονίζονται ο θυμός, ο φόβος και η ελπίδα αποδίδονται με οργισμένα φωνητικά. Θόρυβος που έχει σφυρηλατηθεί στο μουσικό εργαστήρι των Oktopus & MC Dälek αποκτώντας το δικό τους ανυπέρβλητο ύφος συγκρούεται εμπνευσμένα με τους πειραματικούς ήχους και τα εφιαλτικά beats με ένα αποτέλεσμα που συναρπάζει.



Music Alliance Pact - September 2009

Photo by Eardrums

"There's plenty of reason to support a global effort like the Music Alliance Pact (aka MAP). Beyond the plain like-mindedness that seems clearly apparent to us, the music bloggers found in this digest give us their suggestions on the latest each music scene has had to offer in the last few weeks. Not only does it give readers a broader look at the open and expansive world of music, but it reassures that we're on a good path in discovering music and culture - albeit globally - as it comes direct from our valued sources."

Μία ακόμα συλλογή με επιλογές που αντιπροσωπεύουν πλήθος μουσικών ειδών από την τοπική σκηνή 33 διαφορετικών χωρών (σε σχέση με τον προηγούμενο μήνα προστέθηκαν η Κολομβία και η Τουρκία). Εκτός από την ελληνική συμμετοχή (όπως θα συμβαίνει πάντοτε) οι υπόλοιπες που ξεχώρισα τονίζονται με πράσινο χρώμα. Καλή ακρόαση!

GREECE: Mouxlaloulouda
Diafana Krina - Agnos
Diafana Krina is possibly the most brilliant and idiosyncratic band to emerge from Greece in the early 90s. Agnos is taken from Ki Agapi Pali Tha Kalei, an incandescent guitar-oriented album with superb, dark, poetic and heart-bruising lyrics. Long, swelling arrangements are organized cosily around Thanos Anestopoulos' weathered baritone with blankets of keyboard and jarring bursts of exploding drums. Each song blends pure emotion and is expertly crafted, with an amazingly punchy set of melodies delivered by an extremely tight band. Unfortunately, after six records, Diafana Krina disbanded in June 2009.

ARGENTINA: Zonaindie
Matilda - Vanidad
Matilda is an electro-pop duo based in Rosario (one of Argentina's largest cities), consisting of Juan Manuel Godoy and Ignacio Espumado. Vanidad is the opening track from Para Ser Movimiento, their second album, which was recently praised by Mexican pop star Julieta Venegas on her Twitter page. It was released by the Planeta X label in a physical format and as a free Creative Commons licensed download.

AUSTRALIA: Who The Bloody Hell Are They?
Deep Sea Arcade - Don't Be Sorry
One of the more exciting new bands to come out of Sydney in the past couple of years, Deep Sea Arcade is blessed with a very captivating frontman in Nic McKenzie, who genuinely loses himself in every song they play. Don't Be Sorry is the single they're currently touring but the live shows indicate there's a lot more to come from this Sydney five piece. One to put on your watchlist.

BRAZIL: Meio Desligado
Cidadγo Instigado - Doido
Acclaimed by critics, Cidadγo Instigado's third album UHUUU! is probably one of the three best Brazilian records of 2009. Their sound is a mixture of vintage 'brega', 70s rock and avant garde. The band is one of the most creative of the contemporary music made in the country and (besides its experimental and complex songs) has a growing fanbase. Doido, which means "crazy", is a bit reminiscent of John Frusciante's solo work with lyrics about paranoid hallucinations.

CANADA: I(Heart)Music
Dan Mangan - Robots
Robots isn't a complex song, but it more than makes up for that by being insanely, incredibly catchy. I'd challenge people to hear it and not walk around with the closing chorus ("Robots need love too / They want to be loved by you") in their head for days afterward... except I'm pretty sure it can't be done.

CHILE: Super 45
Picnic Kibun - Drop Your Panties
If we could define Picnic Kibun in just one word, it would be "party". A party in which a crazy Japanese sings about women getting rid of their underwear, where a couple of electronic musicians start rapping out of the blue and where a bass player with a surfer look makes rock songs. Fiebre Tagadα is the name of their first album and, just like the band, it's a wild party in which you can dance and get drunk.

CHINA: Wooozy
Tang Qie Nong - I Want To Go Through Your Body
In the summer of 2008, the experimental duo Tang Qie Nong was founded by Fangqi and Tangguo in Guangzhou. The single I Want To Go Through Your Body from their self-titled EP is about the long-cherished ambition of a person who faces death. He wants to go back to the origins and purity, but you must be careful what you wish for.

COLOMBIA: Colοmbia Urbana
Jhonblack - Sola Solita
Hailing from Pereira, Jhonblack is seducing women with his sexy music. His offer is based in electric sounds mixed with hip hop, R'n'B and pop music without forgetting his Pacific roots, to which he is adding a little bit of jazz and soul to create fresh and innovative sounds. Sola Solita is one of his most melodic songs and shows why he is known as one of the greatest urban music artists in Colombia.

DENMARK: All Scandinavian
Slaraffenland - That Great Love Sound (The Raveonettes cover)
This year, legendary Danish label Crunchy Frog - the first home of The Raveonettes among others - celebrate their 15th anniversary. To commemorate the landmark they asked 25 Danish non-Crunchy artists to interpret 25 songs by Crunchy artists and released the results on the double album Saluting The Crunchy Frog-a-logue. Here's Slaraffenland's excellent cover of The Raveonettes' That Great Love Sound.

ENGLAND: The Daily Growl
Beth Jeans Houghton - Golden
Beth Jeans Houghton is a glam folk pixie who injects her sweet acoustic songs with a high-grade dose of pure pop. She has killer tunes, energy, a curious taste in wigs and a certain boldness that's only natural given her Newcastle roots. She rules. She has a new EP coming out this month where "all of of the songs are about a guy who looks like Roger Daltrey circa the deaf, dumb and blind kid days. Apart from I Will Return, which is about Wilson the football floating away from Tom Hanks in Castaway". Golden isn't from that EP but it's still great.

FINLAND: Glue
Keramick & Lobo - Brown-Eyed Susan
Producers Jussi Mikkonen and Visa Mäkinen, aka Keramick & Lobo, combine their downbeat electronic layers with a wide array of musicians for a perfect blend of machines and real instruments on their new album The Braille. Nineteen artists, including singers Eeppi Ursin and Teemu Tanner, participate on the duo's compositions and provide a smooth jazz beat with violins, trumpet, saxophone, percussion and a few other instruments. Brown-Eyed Susan is a dark and intriguing track, a real film noir piece of music.

FRANCE: ZikNation
Caravan Palace - La Caravane
Three sequence programmers - Charles Delaporte, Arnaud Via and Hugues Payen - with a love of electronic music and swing jazz, together with Toustou, Zoé and Chapi make one hell of a band. They will soon be heard at the famous Paris Olympia - proof that Caravan Palace are becoming rather popular.

GERMANY: Blogpartei
Me Succeeds - My Main Discipline
This Hamburg-based trio is quite Janus-esque since they combine gentle melodies and preppy non-parallel vocals with a highly energetic synth-bass. That might sounds like normal indie-electro but both pillars stand on their own to create a quite unique sound.

ICELAND: I Love Icelandic Music
Reykjavνk! - Ζji, Plνs
Reykjavνk! is a raw rock band in which most members originate not from Reykjavνk but Ísafjörður, the capital of the Westfjords. This is one of the loudest Icelandic bands, a collective of philosophy majors, shopmongers and social workers, with an exclamation mark partly as a reference to the vast amount of hyperbole Iceland's capital receives. Ζji, Plνs is taken from their second album, The Blood. The song features a surf-rock guitar riff, rhythmic bass, kick-drum percussion and Bσas' vocals fluctuating between grunting, chanting and falsetto.

INDIA: Indiecision
Swarathma - Jamba
Swarathma plays honest, unpretentious folk-rock. This hardworking act from Bangalore was recently given the chance to record with renowned British producer John Leckie (The Stone Roses, Radiohead) and play a mini-tour of the UK. Jamba (meaning "pride") comes from a compilation album produced by Leckie featuring Swarathma and a few other top new Indian acts. Sung entirely in Kannada, the song, like the band, finds its roots in Carnatic music and combines these sensibilities with orchestral pop trappings to create something that's more a new direction than a middle path.

INDONESIA: Deathrockstar
Koil - Aku Lupa Aku Luka
Koil are one of the greatest rock bands in Indonesia, their songs and style influenced by the industrial/darkwave/gothic/metal scene, with lyrics that tell stories about spiritual journeys, nationalism or just personal things which are easy to relate to yet have a deeper meaning.

IRELAND: Nialler9
Nakatomi Towers - Cut Me Out
This is the first real tune from Belfast-based boy/girl duo Nakatomi Towers and what a cool beast of electro-pop it turns out to be. From the "duh-duh-duh" nonsensical yet catchy chorus to the insistent disco bassline, this is promising stuff for all 2 minutes 47 seconds of its duration.

ITALY: Polaroid
Giardini di Mirò - La Vampa 02
Giardini di Mirò is the one of the most important bands in the Italian indie scene. Formed in 1998, notable acts they have toured with include Godspeed You! Black Emperor and Karate, and they have been remixed by Styrofoam and Dntel among others. Their new album is an amazing soundtrack for Il Fuoco, a silent movie from 1915 directed by Giovanni Pastrone. La Vampa 02 ("The Fire") is the second part of the central chapter, when the two lovers surrender to passion and their love burns away.

JAPAN: JPOP Lover
nhhmbase - 9/8
The latest offering from the Tokyo underground scene is nhhmbase (pronounced "ne-han base"). Formed in 2004, they have complex music frameworks with irregular beats and dramatic code which makes their sound innovative and pop. They have already opened for many foreign acts such as Deerhoof, Tyondai Braxton (Battles) and The Eternals in Japan.

MEXICO: Red Bull PanameriKa
Menuda Coincidencia - Sin Enganche
Hailing from Monterrey, Menuda Coincidencia is a 'rap en Espaρol' trio that made feature appearances on records from some of the genre's top figures - such as Bocafloja and Akil Ammar - before a long overdue but excellent debut EP, Ai Con Permisito. Lead single Sin Enganche is full of crazy and juicy, jumpy jazz hooks with playful swing samples that sustain an existentialist manifesto, ambiguous yet intelligently expressed by its two MCs.

NEW ZEALAND: Counting The Beat
Jordan Reyne - The Proximity Of Death (Blue Eyed Boy)
The Proximity Of Death is taken from Jordan Reyne's fifth album How The Dead Live. A musician who has combined folk, electronica, soundscapes and industrial, Reyne has gained a strong following in the darkwave scene. How The Dead Live is her most contemplative work. The album was commissioned by the New Zealand Department of Conservation and was written in an artist in residence programme. The album fictionalises the life of an actual pioneer woman Susannah Hawes adding history as a character. Reyne has announced this will be her last album.

NORWAY: Eardrums
Sirkus Bjøver - Heavy Metal
The song is called Heavy Metal, but it's as far away from heavy and metal as you can get. This is nice, happy and friendly pop music with a big heart. The members of the duo, Vegard Markhus and Bjørnar Sangolt, grew up as neighbours in a forest in western Norway. They held regular circus shows for their families as kids and called their performances "Sirkus Bjøver". Now, 15 years later, the two have become neighbours in Bergen, and the old circus is revitalized as a band.

PERU: SoTB
Plug-Plug - Tambores
The sound of Plug-Plug falls outside any conventional tag. Some people call them garage, others hardcore - the truth is that when you hear any description it is never enough. Plug-Plug makes acid songs which sometimes sound melancholic, but this band from Lima is more than a style, they're a mixture of sensations.

PORTUGAL: Posso Ouvir Um Disco?
Iconoclasts - Anything Will Do
Iconoclasts are a six-piece from Lisbon with Diogo and Pipa singing and screaming (not at the same time), Pedro doing freaky dances while playing bass, Ricardo hammering away on the drums like his life depends on it, Vitor playing guitar while pounding on every effects pedal imaginable, and Sιrgio doing the same with every annoying thing he lays his hands on. They have a debut EP freely downloadable from here.

ROMANIA: Babylon Noise
Sunday People - Win Your Face Back
The story of this particular band is not what you might call ordinary. It all started in the bedroom of very young Abu Dhabi-born brothers Sultan and Hasan. As they grew older, the bedroom became a recording studio where their dreams, influences and ideas were born. Two actors/musicians joined them later - Cristi Rigman (drums) and Ana Ularu (vocals) - and they found their sound: a mixture of riot, love and intensity.

SCOTLAND: The Pop Cop
The Xcerts - Crisis In The Slow Lane
The Xcerts are the real deal - a rock band who come fully formed with an album of songs to believe in and a pop sensibility that will, at the very least, have you air-drumming to their choruses. Crisis In The Slow Lane perfectly sums up what they and their debut album In The Cold Wind We Smile are all about - every dial is set to 'epic' as it gradually builds to a soaring conclusion. If you're a fan of Biffy Clyro, or good music in general, you'll love The Xcerts.

SINGAPORE: I'm Waking Up To...
MUON - Cylons Dream Of Electric Sheep
Can cold, heartless, surgical machines ever have souls? Well, experimental dark electronica group MUON thinks they can. If the computer is dreaming inside, it dreams in ones and zeros, harsh squelches and inane beeps, each a little exegesis looking for proof of life. MUON have put together a creepy Frankenstein of deeply resonating drum loops, bleating sheep and what could pass as the theme from the Zelda videogame.

SOUTH AFRICA: Musical Mover & Shaker!
Jax Panik - Talking To Myself
A crazy, outrageous mix of electro-pop and a dash of rock 'n' roll is what Jax Panik's music is all about. He started out as an 'online only' artist but the success generated from his activity soon led to a full-length album release. The album was named Cigarettes And Cinnamon from which Talking To Myself is taken. The song artfully showcases Jax's winning formula which consists of catchy beats, meticulous production and lyrics that reveal a slightly dark edge upon closer listen. With a new album out in March, Jax Panik is set to become an even bigger hit, both locally and abroad.

SOUTH KOREA: Indieful ROK
Plastic People - B/W Picture
Folk-rock duo Plastic People has been around for many years, all the while successfully trying out various musical directions. On their most recent album Snap, released in July, the selection of songs is more diverse than ever with modern folk, some rock tracks, a bit of psyche-pop and C86-inspired twee. Choosing just one song when they're all amazing in their own way proved a difficult task, but it had to be done so here's the captivating slow-paced rock piece B/W Picture that inspired the snap-shot theme of the album.

SWEDEN: Swedesplease
Vikta Fåglar - Walk Along
Vikta Fåglar literally means "folded bird" in English. Loosely, I think it translates into the term origami. Musically, the band combines elements of the Swedish folk tradition with some classical and even experimental noise - such as when the cymbals come crashing in towards the end of Walk Along.

TURKEY: Reset!
Solardip - Paralyze Me
Solardip is an electro-indie three-piece formed in Istanbul. After a couple of years successfully performing on the local scene, the band has just released their first EP, Dip Inside, and are about to make a big comeback with their new sound and concept. Solardip, often compared to The Presets, offers laser-like synths, danceable tunes and arousing vocals.

UNITED STATES: I Guess I'm Floating
Holiday Shores - Phones Don't Feud
Holiday Shores, Twosyllable Records' latest discovery, continue to diversify the label's output by creating equally messy and melodic indie rock that's about as addictive as anything else of the same vein coming out this year. Their new album Columbus'd The Whim is available for consumption - sink your teeth in before the hipsters do.

VENEZUELA: Barquisimeto Musical
Nana Cadavieco - No Hay
Nana Cadavieco is a young Venezuelan singer full of energy and hype, which she reflects in each and every one of her performances. Exposι, her latest record, is undeniably influenced by rock, pop, indie and disco-punk and a few world music and electronic elements. Nana says of the song, No Hay: "It portrays a human reality, very close to Latin America. The message I want to send with it is the process I went through with my new CD. After all, I still smile, albeit with a little sarcasm."

On repeat

Follow their traces