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.


 

Ghetto Ghetto: A Two-Piece That Suits

There’s something undeniably appealing about two-piece rock bands.

It’s the limitations, of course. There’s always an innate admiration that two people can tease enough variety out of the smattering of instruments that their limbs can accommodate, and partly because such an arrangement almost always results in music that is unequivocally primal in its  make-up.

So can you guess what Ghetto Ghetto sound like? You’d be close, of course – as Ghetto Ghetto are a two-piece rock band, and thus fulfil the criteria outlined above.

They’re from Melbourne, are called appropriately basic rock names (Rob, Kent)  and have the kind of hair that bands used to have in the 90’s, before bands decided to get stylists and sponsored by fashion labels. This is all looking rather good, isn’t it?

And so it proves: You’re One Of Us is primary-coloured in every respect: teak-tough riffs, stolid, solid drums and lyrics music on the classic combination of love and alienation.

Yet – there’s a droning, lazy, warped quality to the noise itself, elevating the song above the drudgery of the sum of its parts.

This band could have sounded like Jet. Instead, they’ve found a way to worm something more interesting into the furniture. Nice.

MORE: ghettoghetto.wordpress.com

The View From… Camden

Guy Fawkes lives in Camden. When I was 16, Camden was the coolest part of the UK, merely because Blur, Elastica and, er, Menswe@r used to drink in Britpop haunt The Good Mixer. These days it still retains a certain caché, except that now it’s Amy Winehouse falling out of pubs there rather than Damon Albarn. Here, Guy reveals the duality of the Camden scene…

Like many places, where I live has some advantages and some disadvantages. Among the best things about living in the vicinity of Camden Town is that everyone has heard of it around the world it seems, so enlightening them as to the environs of your habitation is certainly a deed made easier. But most seem to think that living in Camden would be the best thing around.

Suggested listening #1: myspace.com/notcoolisaband

Well they’re just wrong. Maybe living in the capital has made me a little spoilt in terms of music. Granted, Camden is much better than say Crawley or Coventry – but let’s not get bogged down in that. When it comes to the music and the atmosphere, it is certainly not the case that Camden is second to none.

Let’s have a look at some of the more established venues: Roundhouse, Barfly, Electric Ballroom, Koko, Dingwalls. These are full of shirt-wearing, beer-slurping businessmen who would much rather prey on innocent teenage girls and listen to Oasis than whatever poor new band is trying to win their attention at said venue.

They don’t care about the music or creating an exciting atmosphere. It’s a saddening state. Either that or the nights at these venues are all booked up by big promotions companies like SJM who flood the repertoire with tame radio-friendly trash.

Suggested listening #2: myspace.com/chapter24

You will get some decent bands playing now and then but these shows will inevitably be filled with industry. A prime example was The Drums playing the Barfly last year, rammed – not with punters eager to catch them in an intimate atmosphere – but with shedloads of industry figures.

Perhaps this is a good thing – providing up and coming bands with the opportunities to establish themselves onstage with audiences that can propel them to further glory. But it feels like watching meat churning out of the grinder. The Drums were already set for their giddy heights – their set at the Barfly appeared to be little more than a congratulatory self-pat on the back for the industry at large.

Suggested listening #3: myspace.com/fanzinetheband

Walking around Camden is devilish. It is not so much the tourists that are irritating – it is a famous area, rich in history and colour so why not visit? But the people who come down to pretend they were/are a member of a subculture are the most infuriating. Specifically punks who seek to extract money off tourists for photos. How punk is that?

Camden needs a fresh start, fresh venues and fresh promoters. Unless we want to see it become a sordid bastion of “nostalgia” and milking the past, because that’s where it’s heading to.

My tip for finding reliably good music is to check out what’s happening at The Lexington on the nearby Pentonville Road. Always a great sound, always a lovely ambience, seemingly always good bands too. It exudes a great ethos, something that is regrettably clearly lacking in Camden.

Suggested Listening #4: myspace.com/wearelostfiction

>My Amiga – Today’s New Band

>When I was a young ‘un, before I bought a guitar and sat in my bedroom mangling Smiths songs and wondering if I could convince my parents to let me paint my bedroom walls black, i used to while hours away playing on my Sinclair ZX Spectrum. It had sticky rubber keys, 48k of memory and the games took five minutes to load off a C90 tape. It was my nerd-baby though, and I’m still proud that I completed Magicland Dizzy without losing a life. These halcyon days were tarnished a bit though, when my friend Dan got a Commodore Amiga for Christmas – a computer which made the Spectrum appear weak and feeble in comparison (which, of course, it was).

The Amiga was ace. I presume Today’s New Band, My Amiga, harbour similarly nostalgic feelings about unwieldy, grey early-90’s computers. They’re from Liverpool and have that seemingly genetic Liverpudlian way with treble-tastic rock melodies. My Amiga are what the Famous Five would sound like if they formed a band on their days off from drinking lashings of Ginger Beer and solving suspiciously family-friendly crimes.

That is to say, My Amiga sound young and sprightly enough to make the inevitable A&R men at their gigs feel like fuddy-duddies with try-hard haircuts. Though to be fair, they’re like that anyway. Thank Heavens for Little Victories is a surprisingly deft and floaty throwaway pop tinkle, with a shouty bit to prove that they’re actually of drinking age. Untitled is a brisk and jangly pop fizz which explodes frenetically with youth, the sonic equivalent of a child trying to build the tallest lower of Lego possible, and then laughing manically when it falls over.

My Amiga are as fun as drawing the curtains on a sunny day and playing Sensible Soccer until teatime. Though you probably won’t get wrist ache from the joystick. Unless you really like them. If you known what I mean. Listen to their songs here!

>Today’s New Band – DANANANANAYKROYD! A Glaswegian Triple Bill!

>Wowsers – today’s band has it all. That is, all that makes us excited and tingly here at A New Band A Day. Firstly, today’s band is the third in the Fabulous Glasgow Triple Bill, hot on the heels of the wonderful ERRORS and super Q Without U. And then, secondly, and almost more groin-pulsingly exciting, is the Super Fantastico Name that they have – pretty much a prerequisite for getting on ANBAD, such are our soaring levels of idiocy.

So then, here’s today’s New Band – DANANANANAYKROYD! Let their name roll over your tongue a few times, because it’s a whole truck-load of lot of fun to say it out loud. In many ways, it’s the perfect band name, appealing to those who like mildly novelty names (like us) and people who like dressing up as the Blues Brothers at any given fancy dress party. It may appeal to other people too, but we don’t have that wide a variety of friends, so we aren’t in a position to judge.

Anyway, DANANANANAYKROYD‘s music is great. Considering they’re from Glasgow, where, by the sound of it, crafting great pop songs is taught in Infant School, this is no great surprise. They yell, grind and crunch their way through a bunch of swift and sneaky songs – check out British Knights (MC Hammer’s trainer of choice, fact fans) for a burst of super, howl-at-Button-Moon rock. Cleaning Each Other follows a pleasingly similar path of yell-blast loud guitars-thrash drums, and yet keeps the all-important melody churning through it all.

Glasgow 3 Rest of World 0. Check out their Myspace page here!

Childhood: The Best Time Of All Our Lives

Childhood, eh? Best time of your life. Not mine, but specifically yours.

Annoying when people say that, isn’t it. I mean, yes, childhood is generally a blast for everyone – but in this age of enforced, conspicuous nostalgia, it’s tempting to tell everyone that your youthful years were spent locked in a coal shed with only crude figurines crafted from your own filth to keep you company.

Childhood (the band), are similarly ambiguous as to whether they are fun or not. Sure, their music is a minor delight, but I couldn’t tell you definitively whether its makers were sporting wide grins or not whilst creating it.

Childhood // Paper Wave

Paper Wave is the sort of song that has already been identified as some sort of quasi-ironic “[insert genre]-wave”, probably by that mysterious panel of online taste-makers that I often read about but evidence of whom I have never actually seen.

It has the silky feel of a warm Mediterranean evening breeze – comforting, gentle and with the sense that it could transform into something altogether more thunderous at any moment. Except that it never does.

Childhood are aptly named – their songs frame half-buried feelings that never fully materialise, and are all the more beguiling for it. Great.

MORE: myspace.com/childhoodlondon

>Today’s New Band – Like a Fox

>Simian-theme band names are like all the rage in rock music. The Arctic Monkeys, the Monkeys, Gorrillaz, Simian, and even last Friday’s New Band of the Day, The Cruiser Chimps.

So here’s to today’s new band, Like A Fox, for shunning the temptation of crowbarring a monkey theme into their name. Foxes are crafty animals, all sly and sneaky, which augurs well for a rock band’s image. Like a Monkey would just conjure up images of the band scratching purple bottoms and scaring zoo-bound school parties by throwing their own excrement at them.

Unusual faeces imagery aside (though if that’s your thing, see one of last week’s bands, Coprophagia, here), Like A Fox are a lovely loping mix of Mercury Rev and Grandaddy. They’re another one of those slightly gleeful American bands – the type that seem to drift out of the USA every once in a while – and are a happy antidote to the mentalist urgency of most rock on the radio at the moment.

Frankly, if their song A Little doesn’t make you feel just a bit joyfully wistful, you may not be wholly human. Hear it on their Myspace page – and check out Heavy Soothing too- and see if time doesn’t just float by.

– – A big thanks to Andy Woods from the fabulous Smile night at the Star and Garter in Manchester for introducing me to Like a Fox- –

Secret Diaries: Parcel Delivery

Secret Diaries have one of those supremely satisfying band names that make you wonder why no-one has thought of it before. I love it when that happens.

And speaking of ‘supremely satisfying’, Secret Diaries’ undulating, stacatto songs are, naturellement, just that.

Each precisely-placed thump within Secret Diaries’ music delivers a tasty parcel of sound, and we, the listeners, are merely conduits for its musicality; consuming, relaying, waiting for the next.


With this in mind, Islands is the perfect title – this song is a series of discrete sounds, each unlike the other, but carefully assembled to sound like a whole.

Too cosmic an idea? Then think about this, as Islands’ relentlessly soft sound trundles ever-onwards: if this song continued as it was for another hour, would you really mind? Thought not. Deliciously hypnotic.

MORE: secretdiaries.bandcamp.com

The Manticores: A Mainline Connection

Odd how a while ago you couldn’t get someone to listen to vaguely psyche-y music for love nor money.

It was the niche realm of the odd and the defiantly outré.

Then Tame Impala poked the bubble of discontent simply by the virtue of being very, very good, and all of a sudden the collective tastebuds are entirely receptive once more, eagerly lapping up every warped, cloudy psyche note.

Neat timing from The Manticores, who can/should/really must capitalise on this cheerful turn of events.

And they too, fortunately, are good; at the very least, they’re much better than most husband/wife bands ever are.

 

Featuring the snappiest drums this side of a early-noughties Neptunes remix, New Who is – and I use this word entirely advisedly – a delightful, pink-hued romp through the physical sensations of wonder, fulfilment and delirium.

The song is a nugget of joy. It’s a beaut. It’s a mainline connection to a better, happier place. Hop on!

MORE: soundcloud.com/the-manticores

Algiers: Crude Jokes

The most exciting aspect of tonight’s Olympic™ Opening Ceremony™ is perhaps not trying to guess whether the rumoured “Glastonbury style moshpit” will excitedly jump about to socially acceptable “moshing” music, or actual Extreme Noise Terror hits; but what kind of soundtrack to the event Underworld are going to produce.

As much as my new-band leanings lead me to believe that D/R/U/G/S would have done just as fine a job, Underworld or Orbital were pretty much the only choice for the role, assuming you want to pick a brilliant techno duo who make amazing soundtracks for films that don’t exist.

So, whilst I pray for tonight to feature a three-hour version of Rowla, here’s a crude joke: what’s 7 inches long and full of blood? Answer: the 7″ single from Algiers, called Blood, of course.


Algiers are the final band from this week’s tranche of Bands I Meant To Write About A Couple Of Months Ago. It’s OK, though: Algiers are still a new band, honest.

Blood is a weird, compelling hybrid of teeth-rattling bass and slo-mo swamp-blues: vast, dense, complicated and lusty. It’s not uncommon for bands to try and meld two disperate genres these days, but to actually pull it off and make the result sound coherent is another matter. Algiers may take a well-deserved bow.

MORE: soundcloud.com/algiers

>Today’s New Band – Hot Lava

>
If you could remake classic songs with a contemporary twist, would you? Or does the phrase ‘contemporary twist’ make you retch with the bilious force you’d usually only attain after watching a dozen car TV commercials back-to-back?

If you’re like me (and if you are – 1: heaven help you, and 2: perhaps you’ll have an idea where that limited edition Primal Scream 7″ I misplaced a few years ago is), then you’ll flinch at the notion. But it’s a tempting thought all the same: just think what the Beatles might have done with a copy of ProTools.

So, Today’s New Band offer us a glimpse of yesterday today. Hot Lava make songs that sound old, but new.

YSFW (Deadbeat Daughter) is a bolt from the past, a song that has shot through a wormhole in time – and anyone who has dragged their eyes across A Brief History of Time will know that this means it also partly comes from the future. Or something. Stay with me here.

Shimmering guitars ring and bounce; the soundtrack to an imaginary 60s TV pop show – the kind that has dancing girls with bouffant hair and purple minidresses.

JPG In The Sun and Brainex both blur the line between the past and present even more furiously, rattling drumbeats weaving neatly with eddying pop-psyche noise.

Hot Lava contort sound, and perception of it. The treatment they afford their songs isn’t glib or novelty, but a strange distortion of what you assumed to be the norm. And most importantly of all, their songs needle into your mind and stay there, vibrating just so.

Photography by Ellie Bolton