April 19, 2021

Geri van Essen: Cleaned the Windows

Dutch singer Geri van Essen is killing it softly on her new album Cleaned the Windows. She has been living in London for more than a decade now and has internalized the output of the UK folk boom in the sixties and early seventies. Her dreamy vocals are filled with melancholy and curiosity, as she contemplates getting older (23/32) or deals with solitude (Spelling Lonely).

She recorded the demos at home, after which musician, mixer and label owner Stefan Breuer came in to add more instruments and a wealth of guest players. The core - her vocals, piano and guitar - remained intact in the process. Van Essen has a lot to say, without raising her voice. Cleaned the Windows is like a gentle Summer breeze - highly enjoyable and reinvigorating.

Women of the Night: Open All Night

NYC rock trio Women of the Night send out an invitation to all the lonely souls who need a fix with their new single Open All Night. It is a bit sleazy in all the right places, with a general fuck-you attitude in lead singer's Jordan D’Arsie delivery. Nice touch adding a nod to The Velvet Underground's I'm Waiting For The Man: "I know exactly what you need // I can get it to you // 24 hours a day // no more waiting on the man I deliver // anytime you pay".

April 18, 2021

Leslie Pereira & The Lazy Heroes: "Good Karma" video

Los Angeles based indie rock quartet Leslie Pereira & The Lazy Heroes have made a socially distanced video in a hardware store for Good Karma, the title track from their latest album: "[they] have mastered the art of turning punk and garage rock into a heady mixture of upbeat songs". The clip was directed by Michael Bulbenko.

» lesliepereiraandthelazyheroes.com

HCTF review of Good Karma.

Words about music (582): Tim Bowness

I still actively love listening to and discovering music as much as I do making it. For me, I’m looking for emotional soul mates or something that excites me and perhaps leads me to think differently about music.

Tim Bowness

April 17, 2021

The Wedding Present: Locked Down and Stripped Back

photo: Jessica McMillan

English indie pioneers The Wedding Present have been busy revisiting their back catalog, with new recordings of classic albums like Tommy and George Best. When live shows were cancelled they decided to go back tot basics for yet another trip down to memory lane to lay down the tracks for Locked Down and Stripped Back, with a few surprise tunes thrown in. Louise Wener sings on We Should Be Together, a "lost" track from her band Sleeper (it is now finally available on This Time Tomorrow.

In hindsight it has become patently clear that main man David Gedge wrote timeless songs back in the day. Legendary DJ John Peel went on record stating that "The boy Gedge has written some of the best love songs of the rock'n'roll era – you may dispute this, but I'm right and you're wrong". Even people who have never heard of The Wedding Present will recognize My Favourite Dress and the new version doesn't disappoint. Long time fans will appreciate these revived songs. Songs like You're Just a Habit That I'm Trying to Break and Deer Caught in the Headlights are like great wine - they have aged well.