Monday, 11 July 2016

ALBUM OF THE WEEK: SHURA - NOTHING'S REAL

ARTIST: SHURA
ALBUM: NOTHING'S REAL
https://open.spotify.com/album/7DgEWu4RRhwZAGydliLWOt

Shura is Aleksandra Denton, a 23 year old singer-songwriter-producer from London, who grew up in Manchester and has Russian heritage. Two years in the making, her debut album 'Nothing's Real' has just been released through Interscope/Polydor.

The 13 track album is a lush, full bodied, wholesome indie pop record that spans times gone by, the current zeitgeist and a whole other future world that only Shura seems to know about. Influences and reference points can be found with the likes of Grimes, Bat For Lashes, Goldfrapp, as well as a whole spectrum of 80's and 90's pop. Whilst some may think the album is a little long as it comes in at just under the hour mark, but in truth it doesn't feel like things go for too long and it actually allows the songs to breathe a little and envelope the listener.

Such is our fondness for this album we're happy and confident to say right now that Nothing's Real will be 2016's most complete pop record. The gentle airing on the right side of uniqueness and integrity is a key component of the album's success. Oh and she's great live too. Yep!


Wednesday, 15 June 2016

ALBUM OF THE WEEK: BIG DEAL - SAY YES

ARTIST: BIG DEAL
ALBUM: SAY YES
Based in London, Big Deal are principally formed by Alice Costelloe and Kacey Underwood. The band have recently released their third album 'Say Yes', which follows up 2011's 'Lights Out' and 2013's 'June Gloom'. The new record is their first through FatCat Records and sees the band embracing a bigger, better, more wholesome sound.

The album was recorded over a 10 day period during the Summer last year and features 11 tracks which come in around the 48 minutes mark. The album lurches and sways from rock to pop, with a sense of genuine honesty felt throughout.

The band themselves have recently spoke about this new found openness and how it helped the album saying "We’ve always been pretty private about our relationship within the band, but feel more comfortable talking about it for this record, as it’s pivotal in the placement of our career.” they explain. “It’s about taking all kinds of heartbreak and defeat, and just looking at it dead in the eye and going for it". Repeated listens are a must on this one but be warned you'll get hooked!

Monday, 6 June 2016

EVENT: 2000TREES FESTIVAL 2016

http://www.twothousandtreesfestival.co.uk/
2016 sees our favourite UK independent festival - 2000trees - celebrating it's 10th birthday. The recently announced full line up is headed up by The Bronx, Twin Atlantic, and Refused, and is taking place over the weekend of the 7th/8th/9th July, with this year is set to be the events biggest yet!

3-day, 2-day, and day tickets are still available but if you're planning on attending you'd better get involved sharpish as the festival organisers are expecting a sell-out pretty soon. The complete line up and day splits are below (note the TBA on Thursday night, wink wink!), with our tips for new bands this year being Black Peaks, Counterfeit, John Coffey, Palm Reader, Kagoule, and Heck.

We'll have more in the run up to the festival, during, and of course our review when its all over!

http://www.twothousandtreesfestival.co.uk/ 

http://www.twothousandtreesfestival.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/clashfinder2016.2No-times.pdf

Monday, 16 May 2016

ALBUM OF THE WEEK: UNITED FRUIT - ETERNAL RETURN

ARTIST: UNITED FRUIT
LABEL: UNITED FRUIT
https://open.spotify.com/album/3VKsK5wuKQjjpXpm9KCSlB

'Eternal Return' is the new album from Glasgow based four-piece United Fruit, following up there 2011 debut 'Fault Lines'. Whilst that first record brought the band a strong loyal set of followers, the new album is set to propel them onto bigger stages (literally!). The 11-track album is a mixture of their alternative rock upbringing and a maturer melodic pop sound, a combination that many have tried to master but few succeed with, but for my ears United Fruit have wholeheartedly done it on this record.

Friday, 13 May 2016

EVENT: 1-2-3-4 FESTIVAL

http://the1234festival.com/
A few years ago the 1-2-3-4 Festival was one of the main London events to look out for during the Summer months. Having re-charged their batteries the festival is back for 2016 on Saturday 3rd September, with this years event taking place at Three Mills Island in Bow.

We at Music Liberation are particularly excited about the festival's return since the line-up features a slew of acts we've favourably covered over the past few months.

LOVE BUZZARD
Alongside headliners The Cribs and The Jesus And Mary Chain, we'll be looking to see our fave's Love Buzzard, Crows, USA Nails, and Pins. There's also Gang Of Four, Telegram, Spector, Toy, and The Wytches who we're looking forward to checking out.

Alongside the music there's also going to be a special 'pit party' stage, interesting street food outlets and bars, as well as secret sessions and guests during the day. 

The line-up so far is below, whilst tickets are available to purchase now. We'll be covering the festival in the lead up to the event and during it, so stay tuned for more info!

http://the1234festival.com/

Thursday, 28 April 2016

ALBUM OF THE WEEK: VICTORIA+JEAN - DIVINE LOVE

ARTIST: VICTORIA+JEAN
ALBUM: DIVINE LOVE
LABEL: FY RECORDS

'Divine Love' is the debut album from Victoria+Jean, an experimental pop duo from Stockholm, Sweden. The 12 track record is being released through FY Records and features the work of a host of well respected contributors.

The real life couple sent the album to their favourite producers and amazingly each one chose to work on the track the duo had hoped they would. Among those chosen were John Parish (PJ Harvey), Rob Kirwan (The Horrors), Ian Caple (Tricky), Joe Hirst (Stone Roses), and Lucas Chauviere (De La Soul).

The diversity between those names should tell you how varied Victoria+Jean and indeed this album are, with different styles and influences found throughout. Reference points could be artists such as St Vincent, Tune-Yards, or PJ Harvey, but really the album manages to traverse between those artists with it's own unique sound.

The vocals from Victoria are boundless, showing a great range and this is the driving force behind most of the tracks, however the guitars from Jean are riff heavy and this provides a nice base for the music, with our stand out track for this being 'Your Baby Don't Know Me'.

Thursday, 21 April 2016

LIVE: VODUN @ THE LEXINGTON


A few weeks ago we made Vodun's 'Possession' our Album Of The Week. We enjoyed the combination of soulful vocals with heavy drums and guitar, and luckily enough we were able to catch them recently at their sold out album launch night at The Lexington. Supports on the night came from Casual Nun, and Limb, with the latter particularly impressing us in what was the first gig we had managed to catch them at.

At this point we should mention the promoter for this show - Chaos Theory - an exciting independent promotion collective who have been putting on London shows since 2010, and are headed up by Kunal Singhal. It was a pleasure to be at a gig whereby everything flowed effortlessly, minimal time between bands, and even some on stage introductions from Kunal himself. It gave the evening a cooperative feeling between the whole room, from promoter, to the bands, and with the crowd, leaving a feeling of togetherness and a vindication for coming out on school night. Hands patted on backs everyone!

Image courtesy of Riff Rock Records
So to the evenings main event, London 3-piece Vodun. With the venue brimming and space a premium, the band appear on stage wearing some delightfully colourful attire and after a short vocal intro they launch into 'Loa's Kingdom' which happens to be the opening track from their aforementioned debut album. The band have a strong stage presence, with vocalist Oya commanding proceedings, backed up by some heavy riffs from Marassa and precise drums from Ogoun.

Their set has clearly been well worked out, with everything sounding tight and movement between tracks fluid, and they even have space for backing singers and a saxaphone player to appear at one point, and Ogoun sets her drums on fire. (Yes really!)

In total 10 tracks make up their set which finishes with 'Mawu', one of the lead tracks from Possession. We would highly recommend an evening with Vodun, and if their recent appearances in a well known magazine continue it won't be long before they're playing lots more shows! For a taster check out the video below, another gift from those lovelies at Chaos Theory.

Tuesday, 19 April 2016

ALBUM OF THE WEEK: GREYS - OUTER HEAVEN

ARTIST: GREYS
ALBUM: OUTER HEAVEN

Greys are a noise punk rock 4-piece from Toronto, Canada who this week will release their 2nd album 'Outer Heaven' through Carpark Records. It is the follow up to their 2014 debut album 'If Anything', and their 'Repulsion' EP from 2015. The band are comprised of Shehzaad Jiwani (vocals), Cam Graham (guitar), Colin Gillespie (bass), and Braeden Craig (drums).

The album has been produced by Mike 'De La' Rocha at the Hotel 2 Tango studio in Montreal, where the likes of Arcade Fire have recorded. There are 10 tracks which come in at just under 40 minutes, during which the band cover a wide range of styles and subject matters.

There's some straight up punk tracks, a couple of more rounded indie ones, some shoegaze, and some noise rock. It feels like Mike Rocha has really harnessed that raw dissonant sound the band had on their early work and combined that with moments of calm and space within the chaos.

The split between the two often occurs more than once during the tracks, keeping you on edge and eager to hear where the band take you, with one of the album's final tracks 'Strange World' aptly showing this. Overall Outer Heaven is a really strong body of work which clearly puts across the often ferocious but equally gentle nature of Greys, who must also be a delight to catch live.