Tuesday, 21 April 2015

The Last 5 Years, #50 - 41

Ngaiire, Curxes, The Black Keys + Lady Gaga!

Hey hey, here we are again, celebrating our fifth birthday by looking at all the things we've loved in the last five years. Well, all things musically that is...

#50. ABCD 
by Ngaiire

We only die once not twice
So call off the fire brigade, douse me in kerosene
Turn away the rescue ships, anchor me from the hips.

This is easily one of the best pieces of songwriting to come out of Australia is years. And when you combine that with the stunning vocal power that Ngaiire has? Well you're in for a treat, friends. Ngaiire's impeccable performance is packed full of emotion and works as the light to the darkness of the words she's singing. 'ABCD' is an internal battle for the ages, with our leading lady valiantly fending off the crushing reality around her. I interpret things weird, get over it and just enjoy this epic track from one of our greatest talents. And then look forward to the release of Ngaiire's upcoming sophomore album! (Matt Bond)

by The Black Keys

So you pulled my heart out
And I don't mind bleeding
Any old time you keep me waiting...

I question anyone who doesn't feel the need to at least nod their head in some manner as soon as the opening notes of 'Lonely Boy' are heard. Ok, if you have to wait until the drums kick in, then I might just accept that, but if you don't feel the muscles in the back of your neck forcing your head backward and forward by the time Dan Auerbach starts singing "Well I'm so above you and it's plain to see" then perhaps we may need to check your heartbeat. Still alive? What's your excuse then? I'm not saying you have to have the moves of the incredibly funky guy in the clip, because let's face it, very few of us are that cool, but if you can stop yourself from moving at least a fingertip then, well, I'm glad you're here, but have you checked that heartbeat I mentioned earlier? (Jo Michelmore) 

#48. HOWL
by Lester The Fierce

You want me quiet, I don't know how
My spirit sings, so here I howl.

Oh, Anita Lester. You created just over three and a half minutes of pure magic here. 'Howl' was the most pleasant surprise to come into our blog inbox back in 2013 and the perfect introduction to Lester The Fierce. It's like stepping back to the mid 90s, when rock was all about sexy guitars, beating drums and wailing voices. Or in this case, howling voices. See what I did there? See? My feelings for the track are exactly the same as when I first heard it. So much love. How did this not blow up? I just can't get enough. That chorus. Urgh. Amazing. Can we get some more of this goodness as soon as possible please, Anita? Thanks in advance. (Matt Bond)

by Hey Lady

Push me to the limit
Taking it all the way.

Ooh ooh ooh I do love me a good bit of rock. I love the driving guitars and I love the solid combined vocals and I love the little bit of angst and I love the dirty beats and I love being thrown back into somewhere in the 90s and I love the grungy feelings and I love wanting to chuck on my docs and some ripped tights and a floral dress and I love wanting to bounce around a dark dingy room to the sounds of two girls from Newcastle. I also love that they are called Hey Lady, which I of course can’t say without an accent every time I say it, which is kind of silly, but I also can’t stop myself from listening to ‘My Head My Heart’ which is not silly at all, especially when the rock is this good. (Jo Michelmore)

by The Griswolds

Beware the dog who's selling songs about defeat
Begging for love but you're old enough to know better than you know.

The Griswolds should be way more famous. Don't get me wrong, they're doing really well for themselves. Out touring the world, releasing a banging debut album, hitting it big on the Hottest 100. But come on, they're the funnest. Everyone can enjoy their ridiculously catchy party anthems that the young'uns and the old'un can get down to. Ridiculously catchy party anthems like 'Beware The Dog'. You'll know it. Triple J were all over it last year, with good reason. It's the bomb, from the opening guitar lines to the closing drums. The accompanying clip is some Red Riding Hood meets the Wold Man weirdness with limbs flying errywhere. You'll love it. And you'll love The Griswolds. But you should already. (Matt Bond)

by Our Man In Berlin

Just a little more time
Just a bit of control.

I don’t even know how this band came to our little blog, I think Matt found them somewhere sometime in 2013, but I do know our love of these guys from Western Australia has been well documented over the last couple of years. There's a reason we've kept writing about them and that reason is pretty simple. They just keep writing and recording such impressive songs. ‘Cirrhosis’, the third single from their debut EP is it right? is everything Our Man In Berlin are; it’s dreamy, mesmerising, subtle but honest, complex without being confusing and so very hypnotic. The spell they manage to put me under over the last couple of years hasn’t lifted yet and I’m hoping they soon share more of their magical sounds to keep me entranced for the next few years as well. (Jo Michelmore)

by Curxes

I've never been patient, subtle or vacant
When thinking of ways that could persuade...

I can't remember exactly how Jo stumbled upon UK blitz-pop duo, Curxes. But I'm sure glad she did. With every new slice of industrial-electronic goodness released I'm left loving them more and more. 'Valkyrie' is totally out of control, with beats coming at you from all around making you want to jump around... jump around, jump up, jump up and get down. Yep. We've got Mr. Macaulay Hopwood to thank for that. Roberta Fidora kills it, as she always does, and you'll be screaming along to every word with her. You just won't be as good as her. Fidora's voice is A+, 100%, 10/10 level good. I think 'Valkyrie' could be my favourite Curxes track yet. I'm assuming you'll be able to find it on their upcoming debut album Verxes. And you can add that to your list of must-listen albums for 2015. (Matt Bond)

by Lykke Li

You're my river running high
Run deep, run wild.

It’s so funny how some songs are ones you follow and others are ones that follow you. Some songs take you straight back to wherever it was you first heard them, or to a place and time in your life and then other songs are ones that keep creeping up on you, following you through your life as you go, a little bit creepy like. Lykke Li seems to have a way with music that does a little of both; I can almost remember exactly where I was the first time I heard this song, but I can also name you many times I’ve sung along and nodded my head to those drums, singing the “I I follow, I follow you” over and over again. Is Lykke Li stalking me? Well I don't really mind, those beats, those synths, that voice, they're all so fabulous, like almost everything Lykke Li does. (Jo Michelmore)

#42. 90s MUSIC
by Kimbra

And then the radio played that song we used to sing.

I’m not sure where it was it that Kimbra was meant to go after the massive commercial success of ‘Somebody I Used To Know’ and therefore the huge amount of interest in her own debut Vows. I guess she could have released a quick-fire pop tune about love and parties and other straightforward (read: dull) things and she could have gathered herself a little legion of listeners who love playful pop. That wouldn’t have necessarily been a bad thing, but anyone who really listened and understood her first releases would understand that’s not the kind of thing that artists like Kimbra do. Artists like Kimbra go wherever they goddamn please and Ms Kimbra took us somewhere so unexpected but impressive when she released ‘90s Music’. It was a journey of pop and guitars and electro sounds and (almost) prog rock and vocal effects and it was a little confronting and sometimes confusing and it was exactly as I expect Kimbra to be. She’s an artist not afraid to experiment, not afraid to wear her musical heart on her sleeve and she’s an artist with a boldness that most can only wish they had. With all of that, she’s an artist that we here on this blog have loved for most of our five years and will probably be loving for another five yet. (Jo Michelmore)

by Lady Gaga

There ain't no reason you and me should be alone
Tonight, yeah baby
Tonight, yeah baby.

Can't we all go back to 2011, when the world was obsessed with Lady Gaga. We can all be happy again, like we were in middle school. Or not, whatever. Those were great times though. When we knew all the moves to the dance in 'Bad Romance', a good night out was determined by how many times we heard 'Poker Face' (ma ma ma maaaa) and Ariana Grande wasn't a thing. Lady Gaga might not ever be THE major force in pop again (although never say never), but for a couple of years she was the biggest star in the world. Born This Way was one of the most anticipated albums of ever and it didn't disappoint. How could it when it had tracks like 'The Edge of Glory'. Alright, 'Hair' was ridic, but 'The Edge of Glory' brought the saxophone back in a big way. It's pure, undiluted pop perfection that pays homage to the big, stadium ready hits of the 80s in a way that no other pop act today could pull off. (Matt Bond)

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