Are you concerned about the pedestrianisation of Norwich City centre? if so, read on.
(NB: If the above made no sense to whatsoever you i suggest you acquaint yourself with this beautiful man)
Well, I think that was as good an introduction as any so now I’ll begin with the bulk of my post.
It turns out that Norwich is somewhat a hot-bed for up and coming talent, which somewhat surprises me as my knowledge of Norwich is limited to its seemingly featureless landscape (thankyou GCSE geography) and of course, Alan Partridge.
Bearsuit have been one of my favourite bands for a fair while, but I’ve recently been rather excited as they have a new album in the works- the first since 2007’s brilliant ‘Oh:Io’.
Sadly the six-piece are often compared to bands like Los Campesinos who, whilst not unlistenable, are painfully dull and contrived. Bearsuit are none of the aforementioned, instead playing short stop-starty interesting pop songs filled to the brim with joy
Sounding something like if Melt-Banana or Deerhoof met The Kinks; there is something english in their eccentricity that leads them to being tarred with the ‘twee brush’ that sticks well, like tar.
That which sets Bearsuit apart from the rest of the quirky indie hordes is their inventive use of instrumentation, and no I’m not talking about ‘kooky’ hurdy-gurdies ( *cough* Arcade Fire *cough*), I’m talking whistles, cheap casiotone synthesisers, violins and trumpets. More importantly the use of these instruments is never gratuitous, as often is the case with bands trying to give themselves an ‘edge’, but tasteful and always to the benefit of the song. For example I dont think that ‘More Soul Than Wigan Casino’ would sound nearly as good without the combination of raucous indie-pop guitar with soothing flute and brass accompaniment.
The Aprons are a Bearsuit side-project- on their Myspace they describe their sound as a ‘pretty little nosebleed’ which is about as succinct description as is needed, ill let the songs speak for themselves.
Le Tetsuo are a much more angular post-punky affair; instead of playing cheerful pop songs, they play angry, noisy disjointed yet strangely danceable tunes. At times they remind me of moments on The Victorian English Gentlemens Club’s first album (essential listening, but a story for another day..) but if you’re into the Gang Of Four end of post-punk or the Huggy Bear end of Riot Grrl then this band is for you.
Unfortunately Le Tetsuo have yet to release an album (fingers crossed) but all the material they have released thus far is very promising, and much of it can be found on spotify. If you haven’t yet got spotify (you philistine!) there’s the geriatric grandfather of web 2.0, myspace or if you prefer video check 0ut this session they played for resonance FM.
It would be almost too easy to draw comparisons between Norwich’s Neutrinos and NY’s Yeah Yeah Yeahs; however this weeks mixtape theme is apathy, so fuck it- here’s a comparison!
Female singer who wears outlandish outfits. Check.
Sexually charged vocals. Check.
Raw, driving rhythm section. Check
Bluesy punky riffs. Check.
Basically if you love the YYYs (particularly their earlier work) you’re almost predisposed to like The Neutrinos. However that is not to say that they are derivative in the slightest, and have avoided the YYYs recent electro mistake ‘Its Blitz!’.
Almost unrelated to their music but I couldn’t help but share this tasty nugget (quorn of course) of an anecdote. The band recently soundtracked a documentary about the Amanda Knox trials in Italy, interesting I’m sure you’ll agree though whether this a good claim to fame is up to you to decide.
Anyway, that’s enough serious music for this week, im off to see Eurovision!
Smell ya later!