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Wednesday, December 8th, 2010

Raise Your Head

Review of 6 Day Riot’s On This Island

Photo via FacebookFacebookI took to watching the British TV show Skins a little while back and in keeping with popular opinion, found the first two seasons to be compellingly done and only mildly ridiculous overall whereas the next generation was rather astoundingly charisma-free and so over the top that even the most outrageous soap opera writers would have gone, “really? You did that?”.

If there was some solace to be taken as I endured the later episodes (once I start watching something it’s very difficult to stop, no matter how bad), it was that the show’s reputation for excellent music direction didn’t waver over the show’s run. A fact which helped remind me that I hadn’t yet written up On This Island, the latest effort from London’s 6 Day Riot, when I heard soundtracking various scenes of English adolescent angst during season four.

Not that there’s anything particularly angsty about On This Island. Like its predecessors Folie a Deux and 6 Day Riot Have A Plan, it’s a frequently jubilant collection of songs that fully exploit the uptempo potential of their ukulele/violin/horn-led folk-klezmer musical recipe book. It’s a sound that’s become more in fashion in recent years, but 6 Day Riot have been at it since their inception and topping it all off with Tamara Schlesinger’s sweet vocals, they’ve crafted their own distinct personality from it. There are moments on the record when they stray from their strengths – some of the slower numbers don’t have the necessary momentum to get them where they need to be – but when on top of their game, as they are on cracking album opener “Take Me” and the sweeping “I Am You, You Are Me”, the results are terrific.

Video: 6 Day Riot – “Take Me”
Myspace: 6 Day Riot

Noah & The Whale are giving away the lead track from their third record Last Night On Earth, due out in March of next year, and a another new song is streaming over at Soundcloud. If these are a good indicator of what the album has to offer, then that nu-folk tag is going to be a thing of the past and that’s fine with me. These tunes are good. They play the Mod Club on March 24.

MP3: Noah & The Whale – “Wild Thing”

Spin presents an acoustic video session with The Joy Formidable, whose full-length debut The Big Roar is out January 24 in the UK and March 15 in North America.

The Futureheads have released a video for their new holiday single. The Surrey Comet chats with guitarist Ross Millard.

Video: The Futureheads – “Christmas Was Better In The ’80s”

The Pipettes are also feeling festive, giving away an MP3 of “Santa’s On His Way” in exchange for your email.

Sky Larkin are giving away another track from their latest Kaleide. The trio also check in with The Daily Growl for their Seven Songs feature.

MP3: Sky Larkin – “Year Dot”

Patrick Wolf gives Clash a glimpse into his state of mind going into the recording of his next record, due out in the early part of next year.

Twin Shadow, whose presence very nearly overshadowed Glasser when he opened for her here last month, will have his own show at The Horseshoe on January 12, tickets $10.

MP3: Twin Shadow – “Castles In The Snow”

Seattle’s Moondoggies – who will do nothing to undermine Seattle’s reputation as a factory for plaid-clad harmony-loving beard-folk – will make an appearance at The Horseshoe on February 2 in support of their debut Tidelands, tickets $10. The Standard-Examiner interviews Kevin Murphy from the band.

MP3: The Moondoggies – “It’s A Shame, It’s a Pity”

The Love Language will be opening for Telekinesis at The Horseshoe on March 6, making the bill doubly pop-tacular. Tickets for that one are $11.

MP3: The Love Language – “Heart To Tell”

The short list for the BBC Sound Of 2011 is up and if nothing else, should offer a bluffers guide to the acts you might be getting sick of hearing about next year. NME has done you the service of assembling download links for each act.

By : Frank Yang at 8:36 am
Category: General

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