A New Band A Day 2008-2018

Welcome to ANBAD, which celebrated ten years online in April 2018, and is now “resting.” (I’m still jabbering on about music on my radio show and discussing new bands like, oh, I dunno, The Chats, on Twitter.)

However, ANBAD also has over 1200 posts featuring about 1500 artists. Most are buried deeeeep in the blog, rarely seen by human eyes. This seemed a bit unfair, so I randomised the posts and the ones you see below are yanked arbitrarily from the archive for you to explore.

As with anything this old on the internet, some music plugins, hyperlinks, images, formatting – and, frankly, the writing itself – is broken. But even I will begrudgingly admit that randomly looking at ten years of once-new bands is a fascinating glimpse into a very specific time capsule.

I’m as surprised as anyone that this ridiculous and utterly niche music blog has stumbled around online for a decade, surviving all of my attempts to break it, render it defunct, or let it wither on the vine.  So scroll down and read on – and maybe you’ll find some long-forgotten band from 2009 that you’ll love.


 

MIDWEEK MIXTAPE // 22nd June 2011

If you’re a fan of novelty pop crazes (and as you’re reading ANBAD, you probably are), then you’ll love the fire raging around the discovery of Portuguese Pimba pop elsewhere on the site.

Everyone’s jumping on the ludicrously vulgar bandwagon, and perhaps you should too, if you love summery drinking songs with crude double-entendres about penises.

Lt Drebin has just translated some of those offending lyrics. Be warned, schoolboy humour in pop might take over here too. MIXTAPE!

FIRST! Teleprompter have pulled off a neat trick: to nick 1980’s-era Beastie Boys lyric delivery (COMPLETING the END of each other’s SENTENCES with shouty bits) and coupling it with buzzy pop that the band describes as punk, but is actually a lot more relevant than that. A pleasantly mindless blast.

SECOND! Everyone loves RAWK, right? Sure you do, even the skinny fey boys with ludicrous trouser turn-ups. Gordon Fights are a Swedish heavy rock band, which means you get the best of both worlds: crunchy riffs, and the innate Swedish application of candied-melodies. Nice.

THIRD! Continuing our jaunt around the outer reaches of Northern Europe brings us to Iceland, where Svavar Knútur has recorded a cluster of Icelandic folks songs, and guess what? They sound like beautiful nursery rhymes played backwards. Lovely.

FINALLY! Inch-time has a bundle of sweeping, delicate electronic burbles, and he wants to share them with you – assuming that the softly looping nature of Videograms hasn’t caused you to drift into a deep slumber already. Feathery.

KELLE: Love, Remixed

There are a few reasons that ANBAD rarely features remixes.

It’s certainly not that the tireless team of new music scavengers locked away in the basement of ANBAD Towers has any problem with the very real art of remixing, and in fact, many of ANBAD’s favourite songs are remixes </racism jokes>.

However, it usually boils down to reasons more to do with mere resource management (oh yes) than things like taste or quality – simply put, remixes are more often than not the work of unknown artists (good!) re-sculpting very well-known artists (see other music blogs for details).

This is clearly a quandary of sorts: I love publicising the new artists, but how much of the new work is theirs, and how much is Lana del Rey’s? Thus, I steer clear of them, plus a Gmail filter that diverts all emails containing the word “Remix” straight to the bin makes the thought of facing my inbox so much more palatable.

However.

Kelle has remixed Indian Well’s Love Frequencies, and, well – it’s impossible to ignore.

 

It’s a truism that almost all songs are about love, even the ones that think they’re not. But most songs simply describe the feelings of love – here is a remix that tries to convey the feeling itself. Thus, the song loops around and around, slow and slightly anxious, weary and yet ready to bloom.

The determined repetition is soporific, lovely and true. I didn’t listen to the original song. It wasn’t necessary.

NB: this song was, of course, on Bad Panda records. They truly are miles ahead when it comes to unearthing this stuff.

MORE: soundcloud.com/bad-panda-records/

>Taxi! Taxi! Adios, In The City

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Two days after In The City has ended, and almost all traces of its existence have dissipated. The buzz has moved elsewhere, and a only few limp posters remain. Shame. The feeling of being in the sticky armpit of the UK’s new music world was nice while it lasted.

So here’s an affectionate* faux-award-ceremony look back at ITC:

The Sudden Flash Of Common Sense award: When an unnamed BBC Radio One DJ left Mark Ronson’s keynote speech after 5 minutes, because he suddenly realised that he hated Mark Ronson ‘with a passion’

When Hair Reigned Supreme: The giant, all encompassing fringes of Egyptian Hip Hop; the bleached Princess Diana hairdo of the singer from Ou Est Le Swimming Pool; even Mark Ronson’s slicked quiff: The Conference When Hair Got Bigger Than Rock

Sack The Proofreader Award: The slogan “ITC: Everything Else Is Just Noise” is quite zippy, but only if you remember to include the ‘Y’ in ‘Everything’ before you plaster it all over all thousands of posters, T-Shirts and all merchandise

The Man With The Best Anecdote award: Peter Hook, for his story about Bernard Sumner displaying his displeasure at Spandau Ballet by urinating onto them from a balcony as they played a gig in Paris

The Award For The Most Reverb-Drenched Microphones: 19 year-old Swedish twins Taxi! Taxi!, for their unusually echoing warble.

(Male readers – admit it: a very specific mental image was dredged up when you read the words ‘19 year-old Swedish twins’, wasn’t it? Bleach your mind and be reasonable, please.)

Taxi! Taxi! were elfin, brunette, clad in denim dungarees, and grasping spookily at guitars and accordions. Their songs, punctuated by pleas for more reverb directed at the sound technician, were so alien they felt beamed-in from another planet.

If NASA discovered life in a far away solar system and responded by blasting a space ship filled with Patti Smith and Kings Of Convenience records at them, songs like More Childish Than In A Long Time would be beamed back, and songs like All I Think Of would be made after their first confusing visit to Earth.

Taxi! Taxi!‘s songs are barely there – emotions first, noise second, understanding third. Lovely, wispy, dissolving.

*predictable

Photography by Martina Hoogland Ivanow

MIDWEEK MIXTAPE // 1st September 2010

No ANBAD Donkey Antics this week. There just wasn’t time. Instead, here is a ‘greatest hits’ blast-from-the-past picture.

A poor show, yes – but here’s four genuinely fabulous bands to compensate, one of whom sounds a bit like The Killers. Of course, being the consummate professional, I will entirely gloss over such a glaringly glib comparison.

FIRST! Wild Party sound a bit like The Killers. This is worth getting out of the way right at the beginning, because it’ll be the observation everyone makes. A fairer assessment is that they sound like what The Killers would sound like if they were, you know, good.

It’s not singer L. Kreifels’ fault that he sounds like Brandon Flowers. Don’t judge him. And don’t let this blind the fact that Wild Party are a throbbingly exciting and exhilarating band, and that Take My Advice, amazingly, is scheduled to be released as a B-side. Superb, thrilling stuff, on the basis of which they’ll be huge.

SECOND! Ivan Moult marks the transition from bombast to the deliberate absence of it. When I hear songs this breathy and slight, I wonder what would happen if the singer was exposed to the epic ridiculousness of, say, a Kiss concert. I imagine instant molecular dissolution. Here, Ivan has made low-key, high-impact acoustic songs that barely exist, but you’ll be glad they do. Lovely.

THIRD! His Majesty – There’s something both pleasant and ludicrous about His Majesty, a band who are apparently based in two French cities and one British one, which must make the band practice meet-ups interesting, or at least exhausting.His Majesty make deliciously skewed synth-pop, with the kind of flippancy that only Gallic bands every really get right. Good stuff.

FOURTH! There wasn’t time for four, after all. As previously mentioned – a poor show. Apologies. Normal service resumed next week!

MIDWEEK MIXTAPE // 11th August 2010

It’s still holiday season, and so the ANBAD donkey is still on holiday, possibly sitting at a jauntily amusing angle by a pool somewhere, but definitely sipping some mmm… delicious Kopparberg cider as he does it.

Kopparberg is pear cider, though really there ought to be a portmanteau word – ‘pider’ – to make it easier for drunks to say. And what a nice bunch of people work for them: after tweeting a disparaging message about their annoying advert on Spotify, I received a love-bomb email asking me to contribute to the next Kopparberg Spotify Mixtape.

Which I did, suggesting brilliant ANBAD alumni Young British Artists, Wild Nothing, The Horn The Hunt, and more. Delicious. Listen to it here.

MIXTAPE:

FIRST! Welsh Assembly – naming yourself after the governing body of a country is a nice idea, but one that ultimately backfires when you try to Google for more information them, bringing up as it does pages of Welsh legalese. Welsh legalese, by the way, is possibly the least comprehensible text of all time, combining the incredible tedium of written law with a beautifully bonkers vowel-hating language.

Welsh Assembly // …(demo)

Therapeutically hypnotic, and almost too simple to be considered actual music, this unnamed song pulses gently until sleep occurs. Clever, but not conducive to making money – the asleep don’t reach for their wallet much.

SECOND! Kinnie The Explorer is Dora The Explorer’s half-sister. Unlike Dora, she’s not ramming the basics of the Spanish language down our throats and has decided to kick back and crank up her home-made tunes, which sound like a post-rock band who have suddenly employed a rhythm section who are a bit more eager to get on with the song than the rest of the band. Nice, creative, urgent.

THIRD! Clean Equations are a delight. Songs like Buried Translations are ripe with slo-mo heavier-than-snow fuzzy dream-pop moments. It builds, builds and builds some more, then implodes in your face in the same way a giant booby-trapped Candy Floss mights. But not as teeth-etchingly sugary.

FINALLY! The Lucky Dip Escapade have a band name that would take them far on its own merits. Songs like Camp Fire Song – self explanatory TO THE MAX – will seek out its willing audience of its own accord. Heartfelt.

Done! And done.

Longsleeves; Collect-This, Collect-That, Collect to Win!

Collectives, eh? They’re the new everything.

As usual, blame the internet and its free-thinking ways. I don’t know how the progressive thoughts of a few neo-hippy geeks sits with you, but if collaboration and sharing are the results, then pass me the sick bucket. Everything was better when a few wise cigar-chomping sages controlled the destiny of the hungry many.

Only kidding, of course. This kind of operation is so vastly superior to what went before, its almost silly.

Working as a collective must be just simply easier – whether your collaboration is musical or organisational, the grinding weight is lifted from the hitherto struggling individual, and better music is clearly the result.

Take Golau Glau as a good example of the stupendous collective-derived music that has come before, and to them add Longsleeves, part of the ominously-named Sixty Years War Collective.

Longsleeves // Bring The Devil Into The House

Bring The Devil Into The House sits comfortably somewhere between exhileration and downright puzzlement. A song for all emotional seasons, if you will.

Building with vicious precision and an unwavering adherence to The Rules – ‘music must = good times’ – Longsleeves has created a sound that is almost unique.

By dragging together such desperate sounds – glossy, pearly synth noises, hissing, compressed snares, the sound of a 1980’s home computer loading from a tape, Longsleeves are not only light years ahead of the majority but also the best and most persuasive argument for the collective system yet. Great.

Listen to more Longsleeves here

>Unwise and Unaware: ANBAD Goes A-Wandering

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A (MODERATELY) IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT:

As a valued ANBAD reader/subscriber/twitterer/etc, you’ll be all too painfully aware of the dubious joys of doing things the hard way. We’ve brought you all sorts of bands over the last 18 months or so – some of which have been wonderful, some of which have vigorously divided opinion and some of which have just been plain awkward.

But the beauty of these huge discrepancies in quality is that occasionally a band sneaks through that shouldn’t really have, catching me and you, the listeners, off guard – revealing a new exciting paths to wander down. Removing consistency of thought seems to have some advantages after all.

So: I’ve decided to apply this unwise approach to a wider remit. Having, erm, ditched my job, home and life in Manchester and thrown a sleeping bag, a rucksack and my hopes and dreams (yuk) into a car, I’m off to travel around Europe for ooh, until the money runs out.

Hopefully, along the way, I’ll drop into gigs, Euro-music festivals and the like and, via the magic of wi-fi, be able to let you know whether France really is all about Jonny Halliday or Justice.

Don’t be alarmed though – ANBAD will continue (almost) as normal – there will inevitably be fewer posts per week, so the A New Band A Day moniker, which has always been a bit shaky, won’t totally apply, but there will be new bands and features as always, throughout the week.

If there’s no new band today – why not have an explore through the exciting, bulging and overwhelming ANBAD Archive (just situated to your right)? There are so many bands in there, it’ll keep you busy until the cows have come home, gone to bed and have woken up again the next day.

So: Happy Holidays to all, and here’s to the exciting prospect of writing to you all from the Continent.

Take it sleazy,

Joe Sparrow, ANBAD

***If you’re a new band, please still get in touch as per usual, but please be aware that the regularity of which I can check my email is dependant on free wi-fi in bars, and whether I’m then too busy drinking the local beer to check.***

Tennisist: Do Not Mention Tennisist

I heard a rumour that the band Tennis specify, in no uncertain terms, to promoters who are booking them that there should be no mention whatsoever of the sport of Tennis whilst promoting the band Tennis.

While you let that nugget of true meta-post-bizarro-irony ping around your brain like sodium in a beaker of water, consider this: now that the bar has been set so high, what similar Tennis-related demands will Tennisist make?

Perhaps he could flip the status quo and demand that all physical releases come packaged in giant tennis balls, or that the entire advertising budget is spent persuading Andy Murray to have the album art tattooed onto his stomach.

Who knows the limits in the zany world of Tennis-themed band names?

Most importantly perhaps/of course is the fact that, in Inner Desert, Tennisist fuses together foggy, drawn-out droning noise shimmers with tumbling drumbeats, out-of-control tightened acid blips and groaning vocals.

The noise is enveloping, and long, and intense.

MOREsoundcloud.com/tennisist

ANBAD’S BEST NEW BANDS OF 2012: #2 – STRAW BEAR

ANBAD is running through the best new bands of the year. For explanation of why and howclick here.

For the Top Ten, try here (10-6) and here (5-3) and for the great bands that just missed out, here (15-11).

One of the (many) things that keeps me mentally writhing in pain when picking the year’s Best New Bands is that often, one of them is a band I blogged about recently.

I worry that the only reason I’m singling them out as being especially good is that they are still pinging the synapses of my very short attention span.

And so, I went through the same stupid paroxysms when I selected Straw Bear for the #2 slot in this year’s countdown.

“IDIOT!” screamed my brain, “You only discovered them at the end of November!

And then, I listened to Kitty again. And then I calmed down, and swooned at this lovely, hook-laden, beaut of a song.

Straw Bear – ANBAD said then: “No, it’s not hyperbole – when did you last hear a a hook line as melodically perfect as that present in the chorus of Kitty? This is a song of near-perfect pace, delicious construction, delightful lyrics and sweet intent.”

ANBAD says now: My thoughts have barely changed from the above. In fact, they’ve solidified some other ones too: in a year where I have complained, or at least openly mused, on the paucity of innovative guitar music, Straw Bear has shone some light on what I was actually moaning about.

The problem isn’t really poor guitar bands, or lazy guitar bands who pick up guitars and assume that we will love them regardless, or guitar bands who think they’re edgy (when, with virtually no exceptions, they’re not).

It’s the fact that there are so many guitar bands playing deeply average music that the brilliant, clever, talented ones get smothered. Fortunately, Straw Bear snuck through. They’ve recently been played on national radio, and are building up a head of steam.

They deserve it. Once again, keep an eye out for them in 2013. (And in the meantime, here’s their album Black Bank: www.strawbear.com)