A New Band A Day 2008-2018

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

However, ANBAD also has over 1200 posts featuring about 1500 artists. Most are buried deep 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 of the music players, hyperlinks, images, formatting – and, frankly, the writing itself – are 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. I’ll post something longer soon, probably around the Official ANBAD 10th Birthday in April; but for now, scroll down and read on – and maybe you’ll find some long-forgotten band from 2009 that you’ll love.


 

Lock Up Your Daughters! It’s A New New Band Clear-Out!

Some days, one new band will suffice. This is not one of those days.

Occasionally the pile of new bands marked ‘to do’ in ANBAD Towers becomes so vast and unwieldy, that drastic action has to take place. Today is one of those days.

So here’s the slight return of the Great ANBAD Band Clear Out. Everything must go!

First! a revistitation from one of ANBAD’s best new artists from 2009, Radiant Dragon – who has done a wonderful remix of the wonderful Egyptian Hip Hop‘s equally wonderful song Wild Human Child. Quick, listen to it before you are overcome with wonderment:

Egyptian Hip Hop // Wild Human Child [Radiant Dragon Remix]

Second! Humanizer – look beyond the clunky name and just feel those epic chord changes, the swirling sonic miasma and the vague feeling that Humanizer might be the Manchester band that breaks out before all the others.

www.myspace.com/humanizer

Third! Mondegreen – Glasgow spews forth yet another sharp, cracked, jang-ular new band. Say It Don’t Spray It leaps here, there and straight up your trouser leg. Excellent, bizarre, freshhhhhhh.

www.myspace.com/mondegreenmondegreen

Fourth! Yeti Lane – I’m fairly sure Yeti Lane are French. If so: they are another lovely example of French guitar-pop’s slithering, lithe, lubriciousness. If they’re not, then they’re an excellent, spooky, inventive band. Either outcome is very good.

www.myspace.com/yetilane

Fifth! Bodies Of WorkFlyers is radio-friendly Indie that’s also ear-friendly. This in itself is a rarity. Tender and tough, prickly and smooth. Charming.

www.myspace.com/bodiesofworkuk

Enough! Five is, indeed, enough for now. Rest assured th0ugh, that the VAST pile of TEETERING new bands is simply THREATENING to overwhelm us all at any moment, and such multi-band excess will appear here very soon!

TRANSMIT BLISS: Come Back

transmitblissTime for the quarter-year check-in: are you still listening to m b v?

After all the fuss surrounding its shock ‘n’ bore release, when the surprise of My Bloody Valentine finally releasing a new album seemed to trick a lot of people into a state of frenzy without much thought towards the, you know, actual content of the LP.

It was as if a certain breed of music fan suddenly mutated into the One Directioners of Shoegaze.

But not a ton of people are chatting about m b v now; not in the same way they still talking about the shock Daft Punk comeback, or the shock David Bowie comeback.

m b v is still not a bad album, but its massive online buzz is starting to look exactly that: a load of buzz that suddenly appeared and then suddenly disappeared.

Now, as then, my complaint is that m b v is just not revolutionary, and certainly not worth a 20-year wait. There are tons of artists out there now pushing the boundaries via a 20-hour laptop-fiddling session, as opposed to a 20 year ponder-athon.

Transmit Bliss may not ever make an LP as good as Loveless, but then few will. However, as an example of the kind of boundary-probing that is now routine, they are de rigueur.

 

Who knows what Xela Zaid twelve means. It’s not important. The sounds contained within aren’t really important either, although they are quite arresting and lovely and warm all at once.

The important part is that he is an artist freed of old boundaries, producing what they want exactly how they want to and getting it out to the world. Alan McGee didn’t need to bankrupt himself to get this made. No-one did. These are sounds that will connect with a few in a unique way, and that’s what is important.

MORE: soundcloud.com/transmitbliss

The Sun-Birds, Vast Numbers and A Blown Mind

Today, ANBAD is going to blow your mind. Straight in, then: do you know how big a billion is? Not that big, right? Banks write them off all the time.

Well, listen: it’s big. It would take 30 years to count to a billion. And while your brow crumples thinking that over, take a second to consider the googol. A googol, by the way, is a 1 followed by 100 zeros.

And here’s how big it is: a googol isn’t just more than the number of atoms in the human body, it’s bigger than the number of atoms in the whole planet Earth.

Wait – that’s not true: it’s bigger than the number of atoms in the observable universe. And get this: a googolplex (10 to the power of googol) is such a big number, there’s not enough fucking universe to write it down.

So what’s the point? Now there’s a question which has just taken on a whole  new meaning – but in terms of new bands the point is this: if you’re worried that there are too many bands in your way for you to emerge from, stop. There’s practically none.

Here’s a story about how I found The Sun-Birds. A separate band called the Sunbirds got in touch by email. By the time I visited their Myspace page, it had disappeared. I googled “The Sunbirds band” and found today’s new band instead. From such coincidences, happiness reveals itself.

The Sun-Birds – Drag Me Down

The Sun-Birds‘ particular strain of happiness is soft and fizzing, like the taste and sound of dispersible aspirin in a glass.

Their music soothes and batters simultaneously: order in disorder, pins and needles, ice-pop brain freeze. The pain of being hit in the face with a pillow. Counting to a Googol.

It’s all here. Start now: one-two-three-four-five-six-seven-eight….

www.myspace.com/thesunbirds

>The Great Band Backlog Enema: The Doctor Will See You Now

>Yowch! It’s been a bit of a shock to find that this ANBAD New Bands Backlog was even bigger than previously thought. For the uninitiated, this is the latest in a short, but ever-lengthening, series of posts with the explicit aim of de-cluttering the metaphorical Spare Room Full Of Bands That Didn’t Quite Make It in the equally imaginary ANBAD Towers.

We’re nearly there now, and in truth, it’s been a more than worthwhile exercise. We have re-unearthed some bands who shouldn’t have been in there in the first place and thus have set them free to puzzle your ears and minds. Equally there have been some duff bands too – but this is the one instance where democracy rules on ANBAD, so you can decide for yourself.

Today we have, for your delectation/defecation:

Turnpike Glow – Chiming, charming purveyors of a quaint pop/twee-rock/folk conflation. Wobbly, sweet songs for sunny days, and might sit nicely on your radio as you enjoy a cold cider in the garden. This Heat is sweet, happy and shiny – suitable for certain moods and possibly even meteorological conditions too – but, yes, nice.

The Kick Inside – A band whose name leaves me unsure as to whether it’s a sweet nod to the joys of pregnancy or a cloying nod to the joys of pregnancy. Regardless – Oh, Vanity! is a fey teenager’s mopey conversation with the mirror, set to a superbly jaunty bassline and a guitar with jangle to spare. It’s Always The Quiet Ones is worldly-wise and naive all at once, a conflict that may infuriate some and be endearing to others. Listen and decide…

Two bands then, who will divide opinion, but at the very least will strike a chord with most – though especially with angsty teenagers. As always.

Mmoths: Back in Backpack

My role at the Hype Hotel in SXSW sounded relatively simple: make sure the bands turn up, get on stage, and get off again.

In practice, this task was rather like herding cats whilst trying to nail jelly to a wall: complicated and with a lingering, vague sense of futility.

By the fifth day of it all, I had begun to wholly appreciate the beauty of simplicity. Some bands turned up at the stage door with two vans full of kit – one (unnamed) band had eleven (11) synthesisers, an act which usually coincided with the distinct feeling of my heart sinking into my boots.

Others, like Mmoths, strolled up to the stage door a distinctly un-rock-‘n’-roll hour early, with all of his gear in an anonymous black rucksack. It took all of my self-restraint to refrain from hugging him.

 

Interestingly, it was these artists (like yesterday’s Mujuice), with their world in their satchel, who generally made the most intriguing music.

Mmoths’ was sweet, lilting, enveloping; the crowd grew out of curiosity, arriving for the beats and staying for the woozy warmth. Heart displays the best of Mmoths’ charms: gentle, calm and comforting – but distinct and generously complicated at the same time.

When he finished, he packed up his laptop and pads into his bag, exchanged pleasantries with me and wandered off to sample the multifarious delights of SXSW; everything he needed on his back. The joys.

MOREsoundcloud.com/mmoths

Dream Sick: Dreamily Slick

By now, even I suspect that I simply add bands to the ANBAD ‘to do’ list based on the ludicrousness of their names.

There is, of course, an element of truth in all half-believable conspiracy theories, but really, while Dream Sick have a name that is stratospherically brilliant, it was their music, hidden behind a nameless link, that caught my attention.

That is rare enough, and the appropriate kudos should be sprinkled on them. But to do it with the visceral brilliance of the name Dream Sick shoved casually up their sleeves? Pride should be swelling their egos to Zeppelin size.

 

How to best address this without hyperbole?

Oh, I give up already: Caravel is dazzling in its downbeat glamour; precious but toughened, like an industrial diamond.

Here’s a song that is milky, nourishing and intimately comforting – all whilst acknowledging the transience of life and the importance of closeness. Yikes.

To recap: they’re called Dream Sick. And they’re lovelier than that name could ever suggest.

MORE: dreamsick.bandcamp.com

Memo and Lies, Lies, Lies

Memo is a big fat LIAR. Let’s not beat around the bush. On his Myspace page, he claims, spuriously, that he was the drummer in Def Leppard, knows ex-Miami Dolphins quarterback Dan Marino, and is a tenant of Chuck Norris’.

Claims of such celebrity dalliances are not only perversely 80’s in their outlook, but mere fibs in comparison to the biggest lie he’s managed to propagate: that his output is so prodigious that next time you visit his Myspace page, the songs you loved last time may have all been replaced by new ones.

In a display of real cunning, this claim seems backed up by hard fact: when I listened to lighter-than-air pop shuffle A Minha Son today, the stats read Plays: 0. We are dealing with a dangerous mind here.

Dangerous, but clever. A Minha Son is sharp in execution and gossamer-thin in its design: coolly pretty, distantly alluring and crystalline in poise.

Memo – A Minha Son

It sounds like all the French pop songs you always wanted to like but couldn’t quite – but better. Waif-like, full of love; angular and brilliant.

After all this, ask yourself the question: what is truth? And what is it worth? These are philosophical times, friends. Why even bother caring – let’s just take it all at face value.

And so: Memo is a minor genius, and his vanishing-songs trick will ensure your life is always enriched with a new, obtuse, quirky, song.

www.myspace.com/ilovetheauthor

This Is Water; Plus ANBAD De-Camps to SXSW, ZOMG

If it seems quiet on here for a couple of weeks, it’s because ANBAD is off again to SXSW, for reasons my fragile rational mind simply can’t fathom.

SXSW is all of these things, in no particular order: madness, brilliance, muddled noise, terrible silence, heinous crowds, happiness and Idiocracy-style branding.

Despite all this, I am actually excited, in a weird, sickening way.

However, this year I’m not even going to pretend that I will have time to post any new bands, so you may well be left with the appropriately calming sounds of This Is Water propping up the front page for a while.

 

This is hardly a shabby state of affairs: Calling To Me is intensely relaxed, gentle and zen in the exact way that SXSW is not. This Is Water does nothing unusual except for following his own nose, and producing the music he really wants to produce: slightly drifting, trippy psyche-folk-guitar-pop.

If everyone who made music just made the music they really needed to make, rather than what they thought the world wanted, our ears would suffer so much less. I wonder how many bands in SXSW create with that notion as a starting point?

MORE: thisiswater.bandcamp.com

>The ANBAD Time Machine!

>Lurking today in the ANBAD Time Machine is a frenzy of dinosaur-themed bands, some cracking Welsh-language hip-hop and some music so deranged your mind will melt – all from back in May 2008.

Two of these superb bands have since become bone-fide indie darlings: Dinosaur Pile-Up and Picture Books in Winter, which just goes to show that, despite the obsession with puns, clunky metaphors and the occasional ‘WTF?’ band, ANBAD is tip-top when it comes to unearthing bright young things. So come on in – the water’s lovely. And full of dinosaurs, apparently.

Nokia Play 360° Speaker

**Sponsored Post**

Nokia thrust a shiny Play 360° speaker into our clammy, outstretched palms, with the simple proviso of “let us know what you think”, and immediately gave all at ANBAD Towers a number of sleepless nights: tech reviews are not our forté.

Hell, reviews are not ANBAD’s forté, and that’s pretty much all we do. Still, when technology is as simple to use as the 360° speaker – you turn it on and it makes loud, clear noise – hopefully it is no longer classed as a tech review.

The speaker has no wires, which immediately makes it better than every other portable speaker, and it connects to other shiny, dense devices by Bluetooth. I always painted Bluetooth out of my life, associating it with the twin modern horrors of wireless headsets and the travelling salesmen who have them wedged in their idiot ears.

However, I’m happy to have my perception altered in such noisy, simple ways: the speaker hooked up with both my battered Android phone and my laptop so effortlessly, I suspected sentience on the part of the speaker.

Here’s the full list of complexities that make the speaker work:

  1. Turn speaker on
  2. Turn other shiny object on
  3. Press play
  4. Noise happens
This is the kind of technology I enjoy: easy for the feckless ‘n’ tech-less like me to use, and producing superbly bassy, loud, and enveloping sound for the length of the battery life (which is about a day or so).
I was most impressed when I pressed the volume + button on the speaker, and the corresponding volume + control activated on my laptop, but that probably says more about my simpleton tendencies than anything else.

It’s the kind of portable speaker I always wanted, and fulfils all my mindlessly self-absorbed criteria: tough, easy to sling in a bag, can be used to impress other people. And it is so sturdy, I was sure it could only be hewn from some sort of futuristic meta-alloy.

If you combined it with the Nokia Mix Radio service, you’d never need to buy a radio ever again.

By the way, it turns out that the speaker is actually made of normal, earthly Aluminium, but the illusion was fun whilst it lasted.