Monday, January 21st, 2013
Review of The Maccabees’ Given To The Wild and giveaway
themaccabees.co.ukIt never seemed that Brighton’s Maccabees ever worked themselves into the position of British buzz band of the moment from a North American perspecitve, despite it seeming so easy to do so these days. Whether this was by design or misfortune isn’t really clear, but if idea was to make a proper first impression with their third album, last year’s Given To The Wild, then it was a bloody good idea.
The stylistic touchstones on Wild will be familiar to those who keep up with contemporary British indie – Foals-y tension, Wild Beasts-ish sensuality, Bloc Party-approved rhythms, Elbow-esque stateliness – but what it lacks in boundary-pushing, it makes up for with a remarkable balance of lush atmosphere, technical precision, and grand emotional evocations, all conveyed with impeccable classiness. Singer Orlando Weeks’ vocals, alternately shifting from choirboy falsetto to Win Butler-ish yelp, float above guitars that move from liquid placidity to dangerous churn, all impressively grand yet only going big – as in really big – when necessary. The Maccabees haven’t sought to redefine what Brit-rock is, but offer up an excellent representation of what it can be.
I had been concerned that last Fall’s North American dates supporting Florence & The Machine would represent the whole of the band’s North American agenda for this record, but they’re spending pretty much the entire month of February exploring our highways and byways. They’re at The Mod Club on Monday, February 11, and courtesy of LiveNation, I’ve got three pairs of passes to give away for the show. To enter, email me at email@example.com with “I want to see The Maccabees” in the subject line and your full name in the body, and have that in to me by midnight, January 31.
MP3: The Maccabees – “Go”
Video: The Maccabees – “Ayla”
Video: The Maccabees – “Went Away”
Video: The Maccabees – “Feel To Follow”
Video: The Maccabees – “Feel To Follow” (alternate)
Video: The Maccabees – “Pelican”
Allo Darlin’ have made the whole of their Covers EP available to stream; it’s available for sale as a limited-edition 10″ or as, you know, MP3s. There’s only 300 copies of the vinyl, which collects their versions of tunes by The French, Bruce Springsteen, and AC/DC amongst others, but there’s at most 299 copies left for sale. FYI.
Stream: Allo Darlin’ / Covers
The Dumbing Of America has an interview with London newcomers The History Of Apple Pie, whose debut album Out Of View – a winning blend of sugary pop vocals and abrasive guitarwork – is out next week but streaming now at Clash. Recommended for anyone who thinks on the ’90s fondly.
The Fader gets to know Scottish buzz(y synth) band CHVRCHES. They’re in town at Mod Club on March 20, and while details of their debut North American EP are still forthcoming, another track to preview has surfaced to stream.
Stream: CHVRCHES – “The Mother We Share”
Ireland’s folk-pop outfit Little Green Cars, who along with CHVRCHES were on the BBC’s Sound of 2013 list, though unlike them they didn’t finish in the top 5. They are, however, still embarking on their own North American tour and will be at The Drake – where they opened for Daughter in October – on March 28, tickets $10.
The Scotland Herald and Gainsborough Standard profile Frightened Rabbit, and The Line Of Best Fit a video session. Their new record Pedestrian Verse is out February 5 and they play The Phoenix March 31.
The Joy Formidable talks to Under The Radar about their 2012, Filter about their new album Wolf’s Law, out this Tuesday, and give DIY a track-by-track walkthrough of it. All Saints also has a two-song video session with the band recorded in one of their stores’ basements.
The Line Of Best Fit reports that last week, Little Boots leaked a new song under the cryptic alias of LB. As in Little Boots. Okay, not that cryptic. She’s still not offering any specifics on her second album but speculation is that it’ll be out around March. Victoria Hesketh gave her hometown Blackpool Gazette an interview.
Slicing Up Eyeballs has details on Billy Bragg’s new album Tooth & Nail, out March 18, and an extensive North American tour which somehow doesn’t include Toronto at the moment, and given the routing I don’t think it will, at least this time around. Alas.
Richard Thompson’s new record is Electric in both title and execution, and will be out February 5. A song from it is available to stream, Exclaim has details, and he’s undertaking a North American tour supporting Emmylou Harris & Rodney Crowell which brings him to Massey Hall on March 22 for his first visit since September 2011. RT and Emmylou? Yeah, that’s a night of music. The St. Augustine Record also has an interview with the man.