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.


 

>Today’s New Band – Kontakte

>There’s a short documentary knocking about the internet about the making of Public Enemy’s astonishing It Takes A Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back. In it, one of the Bomb Squad production team explains that when recording the album, they wanted to bring the noise to the fore, to disorientate and shock the audience. “The Noise”, he explained, wasn’t just some half hearted hip-hop shout-out to be “Brought”, like the song Bring the Noise might suggest, but was a whole alluring entity to itself: every single noise coming at you all at once. It’s an interesting concept that neatly sums up Public Enemy‘s uncompromising bombast.

The funny thing about noise is that what one person considers beautiful another will find execrable. This almost fully explains the bewildering nature of the enduring popularity of The Kooks, but not quite. Sometimes noise production doesn’t connect on the usual musical level, but in a way that engages another part of the brain. Today’s New Band, Kontakte, make music like this.
Two And A Half Thousand Miles is obscenely spacious, and is probably the music you’d hear if you lay dying in the middle of the Mojave Desert. Ghosts of Electricity drifts by calmly, interrupted now and then by a sinister hiss – punctuating the song with some sort of urgency. The remix, by Electric Loop Orchestra is as good, if not better, picking up the slack and bashing you about the head, phasing frantically and creating a song through a twin enjoyment of melody and mind-warping effects.

Disorientation then re-orientation. Familiarisation, then enforced bewilderment. This isn’t always music, shifting from discernible melody to heaving fuzz with ease. It is, however, definitely worth a listen.

>Today’s New Band – Everybody Was In The French Resistance…Now

>Some bands spawn multiple side projects when individual members decide to branch out, like, creatively, maaan. New Order, for example, fractured into not only Electronic, but also Revenge, Freebass – who had three bassists in the band – (three-bass, geddit?), Monaco and The Other Two (who were, erm, the other two left in the band who hadn’t done a side project).

The truely wonderful Art Brut on the other hand, have also spawned a number of side projects, though unusually, all of them seem to have emerged due to the wandering mind of affable frontman Eddie Argos. His blog lists eight bands that he is in – more than enough to create an Eddie Argos Side Project Week here on A New Band A Day, and believe me, such is my admiration for the unlikely Art Brut Lothario, that I seriously toyed with the idea.

However, common sense prevailed, and Everybody Was In The French Resistance…Now alone are today’s new band. Their guiding principles are as entertaining as their tunes – they aim to “correct the mistakes of pop songs past”. Therefore, the super G.I.R.L.F.R.E.N (You Know I’ve Got A) on their MySpace page is a riposte to Avril Lavigne’s recent crud-bucket of a song of a similar name. It is such a happy idea – to take a song in which someone’s been wronged and call in the pop-airstrike to level things out – that it can’t help but work.

Whether you regard this as a merely a slight joke or (hopefully) as good fun blended with yummy tunes, it doesn’t really matter. They don’t care what you think. They’re settling scores in the realms of pop, and your (least) favourite song might be next.

Don’t forget, you can always contact me here at A.N.B.A.D. via email if you have any suggestions for bands you’d like to see featured!

True Womanhood – Plugging Ears Into A Mysterious Machine

I just spent a week in Paris. One of the joys of continental European bars, besides the deliciously cheap wine, is the ever-present TV burbling in the corner: sometimes showing news or a slightly obscure sport, but most usually blaring out Euro-pop.

As such, I can report that in Paris, is in the fiendish grip of this hopeless cover of Somewhere Over The Rainbow; although such was her ubiquity on the TV and radio that my overriding memory of the city is of Katy Perry standing on a balcony and bellowing into the night as her bosom erupts with fireworks.

Now I’m back in the less maddening world of the new band, and what a band to come back to: True Womanhood‘s Minajah is overwhelmingly exciting in a way that blitzes any drab memories of anything, ever.

True Womanhood sent me an email in which the band claimed, variously, to have Stevie Wonder’s personal blessings, to have founded a recent dance craze and that they shunned Ableton jiggery-pokery and crafted the whole song with effects pedals.

I am yearning for the former to be true, but am only truly willing to believe the latter, as this is indeed dance music freed from the iron-clad restrictions of laptop paraphernalia; instead infused with feeling, ruffled with ragged edges, displaying its humanity.

Minajah is  so overwhelmingly dense it swaddles its listeners entirely. Some songs throb, some songs pulse, but this one hums deeply, as if we’re suddenly able to tune into the circadian rhythms of a mysterious machine buried deep in the earth’s crust. It’s not often you find a song as breathlessly enveloping like Minajah: a real thrill-ride, which could only concievably be improved by a live implementation of Katy Perry’s boob-firework-eruption trick. High praise indeed.

MORE: www.truewomanhood.com // Photo by Alyssa Lesser

She Ripped: Disproportionate

Wales, as has been noted in many outlets on many occasions, produces a disproportionate quantity of good music for a country of its size.

It’s always been my theory that part of this can be chalked up to the – ahem – stubborn Welsh demeanour, a mindset fuelled by years of being on the receiving end of a bad deal from the big, grumpy country it borders.

Still, hundred of years of cultural oppression is a small price to pay for some great pop music, right?

She Ripped hail from Cardiff, and are another band who are struggling to get out of Wales – so that they can get back in again. Wales provides a funny route map. It won’t matter so much if they keep spitting out angular, outré, outsider songs like Ultra-Social Happy Man.

 

Angry in its own lethargic manner, Ultra-Social Happy Man might even feel a little disassociated with itself. Maybe the band are angrier than they think.

Whatever the collective state of mind, She Ripped take great delight in songs that turn abrupt, jagged corners, and thrust the results at us – ostensibly in expectation of appreciation, but I suspect they’d be just as happy with disgust. They’ll only find the former here. Great, cranky stuff.

MORE: sheripped.bandcamp.com

Venice – A Psychadelic Children’s Party

Italian pop has never really registered much on my musical radar, beyond outrageously cheesy house and oddly repressed memories of bowel-clenchingly average Eurovision entries.

But there is a groundswell of fascinating, quirky and truly interesting music emerging from basements and garages all over Italy, a few of whom have scuttled onto ANBAD with increasing frequency over the last year or so.

And get this for confusing – the latest one, Venice (the Italian band), is based in Rome (the Italian City). Can you imagine the caveats that have to be added to the gig posters?

Perhaps it’s a good thing that the befuddlement begins well before the audience hears the music itself. Venice makes beautifully coiling, softly-psychedelic music that fogs the mind and slows time – the musical equivalent of being blindfolded and spun around at a childrens’ party.

30th Century might name-check the very distant future, but musically its scope pans from the near past to the close future, and we’re left with a sweeping, glassy song that comforts and prickles all at once.

Call it psyche-house if you must, but in reality Venice make much more interesting music than that name implies: swirling, calm and disorientating.

It’s heartening to hear such crafty music creeping out of Italy, as well as being entirely embarrassing that I’d ignored the country for so long. More fool me.

MORE: soundcloud.com/venice-1

Record/Start: Throwaway, Faintly Ridiculous

recordstartEven though my levels of ennui regarding guitar music is almost overwhelming, my inbox is overflowing with it, and I guess most other bloggers’ are too.

More tellingly, I still listed to a lot of it, and write about a lot of it, even though I’d probably be just as happy listening to a medley of Guru Josh throwback hits all day.

Anyway – I just keep coming back to guitar bands, and it could be for a number of reasons, (including that they are so ingrained in my psyche I have no real choice now) but in Record/Start‘s case it’s because the guitars sound ace.

 

Oh, and Record/Start sound a bit like Weezer, though you probably know that already.

Followay, which probably means something that I haven’t figured out yet, is a brilliant three-minute buzz-pop song; and it sounds like the band drank as many caffeinated beverages before they bounced into the studio to record it.

Great, frenetic, throwaway and faintly ridiculous. High praise.

>Today’s New Band – Dom Coyote PLUS! BANG! AND THE DIRT IS GONE!

>If you’re one of ANBAD‘s many non-UK readers, you may not have experienced the mysterious joys of premiere surface-cleaning product Cillit Bang, and it’s bizarrely seductive Lord, Master and Prophet, the perma-yelling Barry Scott. If you’re none the wiser, initiate yourself into the strangely alluring world of Barry here – and then consider this: without the unusual SEMI-THREATENING SPEAKING-IN-CAPITAL-LETTERS tactic deployed by the quasi-benevolent Barry, Cillit Bang would just be another product on the shelves. Barry has bellowed down the opposition and now Cillit Bang sits amongst the homecare Gods.

Like any product now, music is branded and sold to us like bathroom cleaner. Like Cillit Bang, some bands need a huge advertising pushes to really ram themselves home in the public consciousness. This practice is usually the preserve of average bands who otherwise wouldn’t really justify the money the record company has desperately thrown at them – hello Keane, Pigeon Detectives and our old buddies The Kooks.

Today’s New Band won’t need a gimmick, shouty and rictus-grinning or otherwise. Dom Coyote‘s name is pleasingly Pun-tabulous, and gains the usual ANBAD bonus marks reserved for such occasions, but it doesn’t need to be capitalised upon, because it’s his gently aggressive music that will poke you in the eye and ruffle your hair.

Dom Coyote’s sound is spooling and loose, but then tight and focused. One for the Passenger, disjointed and coherent all at the same time, rolls and rolls and rolls onwards so organically and so easily that you could imagine it happily freewheeling for ever. Under The Thumb echoes, languid, but also bristles crisply, a precise balance between paranoid dub and sprightly reggae-folk. Melodies Of Sleep narrates a kind of happy hopelessness, soothing and anxious.

At their best, Dom Coyote‘s songs sound so crunchy, so tactile, you’ll want to get your fingers involved with the sounds, a bit like an aural Rubik’s Cube. It’s as if the songs were recorded as densely as possible, and then were stripped down to the bare bones, so that only the really mouth-watering noises were left. Yum. Get stuck into his songs here!

DANTEVILLES – Even David Bowie Lost It

I’m not sure if being a blogger makes you into a navel-gazer or if that being a navel-gazer is a prerequisite – one which all bloggers pretend that they, and only they, are exempt from.

You can consider the above sentence some sort of meta-navel-gazing, by the way.

Anyway – I often gaze at mine and generally I wonder if I’m going a bit, you know, soft. (Actually that thought often goes through my head when I’m gazing a few inches lower, too, but that’s another story).

The theory was best propagated in Trainspotting: that everyone has it, then loses it, and there are no examples of this not being true. “Even David Bowie lost it,” is the trumping argument.

Bloggers worry if they were cool, and are no longer cool. It’s all we have. And thus, I wonder if recommending a nice, simple, nuanced, folky guitar pop song about love and life means I’m on the one-way track to middle age.

And then I decided to get over myself and enjoy Dantevilles for what they are: purveyors of nice, simple, nuanced, folky guitar pop songs about love and life. And what’s uncool about that?

 

Instead of Dinner is kind of a sexy title when you put it in context, and it has that whole guitar-music-that-is-influenced by 90’s R’n’B thing that The Kids just adore.

And you know, it works well: here in Dantevilles is a band that’s unafraid to let their songs stretch out a bit and breathe, resulting in songs that are delicate and yet glossy. I haven’t heard many guitar songs do that since… ooh, the turn of the Millennium. Whoah. Maybe I am past it after all.

MORE: soundcloud.com/dantevilles

RADIO SHOW // February’s Top Five New Bands

February went fast didn’t it? It’s almost as if it was shorter than the other months or something.

Inevitably, the great new bands intruded our lives thick and fast, and here is a 15 minute radio-riffic celebration of February’s Five Best New Bands:

ANBAD RADIO SHOW // February’s Top Five New Bands

And here’s the links to the bands mentioned in the show:

Martial Arts // Something Beginning With L // Memo // Broken Deer // Scary Mansion

And then here’s the links to the interviews mentioned in the show:

Egyptian Hip Hop // Interview

Stained Glass Heroes // Interview

Ace Bushy Striptease // Interview

Phew. That’ll keep you busy. Some great bands coming up this week – keep ’em peeled…

Caleb Wysor: Ultra-Über-Lo-Fi

calebwysorAfter five years of running ANBAD, I occasionally finding myself slipping into the kind of territory I always meant to avoid.

By which I mean, I sometimes realise I’m trying to convince myself out of featuring the exact kind of bands that ANBAD is supposed to be scratching around for.

I guess it’s partially down to of the ever-increasing volume of new music being made; and the fact that since I have been running ANBAD, production values of even the lowliest artist have improved beyond almost all recognition.

Furnish yourself with cheap computers, mics and other assorted paraphernalia, and – with a little smart mixing, which only costs patience and a good ear – you can rustle up a song that sounds almost professional.

So when I was in the process of mentally shuffling Caleb Wysor‘s ultra-über-lo-fi songlet towards the ‘No’ pile – it occurred to me: just what was I thinking?

I mean, yes, Some Other Day is a song so lacking in production values that at one point I think I heard the creaking of the chair he was sitting on – but isn’t this the point? In how many songs do you feel like the music is being made up right before your very ears?

Talk about minimalist. This is a song that appears to have fallen together by mistake, whilst a man half-sings in his sleep. And yet it’s exactly this cobbled-together, roughly-hewn, out-of-balance nature that makes the song so weirdly endearing.

Some Other Day doesn’t have what most people would regard as finesse. The song leaps about, shuttling ideas back and forth, crowbarring meoldies into tight corners, and splashing drums haphazardly everywhere. But this frenzy of ideas, and the sheer, wonky joy of creation is what elevates this song above a trillion identikit blisswave haircut bands.

Caleb says he wants to buy “a keyboard and midi controller because I made this with a desktop and a microphone and that was not fun,” and while he’s probably right that it wasn’t easy or fun, maybe without this unwanted complexity, the essence of what made this one song so interesting will be lost.

Who knows. Probably not even Caleb.

MORE: cwysor.bandcamp.com