you resource for all things shoegaze & dream pop.

you resource for all things shoegaze & dream pop.

29 June 2012

Bandcamp Track of the Day: Bloody Knives. Disappear.


Band: Bloody Knives.
Track: Disappear.
Bandcamp.




disappear cover art

28 June 2012

Set List for WTSH on Strangeways Radio. Originally Aired June 27th, 2012.

band name/track title
Lilys. Day of the Monkey.
Love Culture. Soul on the Sea.
Cocteau Twins. Pearly Dewdrops' Drops.
Skywave. Slow in Space.
Principe Valiente. Before You Knew Me.
Funeral Home. Stuck Here.
Spiritualized. Stay With Me.
The Verve. Gravity Grave.
Highlands. Waking Up.
Secret Shine. Toward the Sky.
Half String. Eclipse.
Boy in Static. LA Runaways.
Mode Moderne. Radioheartbeat.

Video: Half String. Arc Fold + Eclipse.

Bandcamp Track of the Day: Sennen. Learn to Love the Dark.


Artist: Sennen
Track: Learn to Love the Dark
Bandcamp.

Lost Harmony cover art

27 June 2012

Tonight! When The Sun Hits on Strangeways Radio. 9pm CST/10pm EST

Come join me this evening for When The Sun Hits on Strangeways Radio. When The Sun Hits is one full hour of distilled shoegazey goodness, so black out the windows, grab your headphones, and go down the rabbit hole tonight on Strangeways Radio.

Don't forget to log in to the Strangeways chatroom during the show to hang out with me and many other awesome people while we talk about the music that is airing in real time and god knows what else...

Tune in live every Wednesday, 10pm-11pm (EST), for When The Sun Hits on Strangeways Radio. Join us in the Strangeways chat room for additional entertainment!

News from Strangeways: M83 Extends Tour - US Dates This Fall.


M83 Extends Tour -
Including More US Dates This Fall

If you missed the band the first time around, you have another chance to see M83 live and in the flesh. Trust me - you don't want to miss it.


Strangeways Radio

Strangeways Radio Blog: Shoegaze Spotlight - A Weekly Gaze. This Week: The KVB.


When The Sun Hits and Strangeways Radio are uniting on yet another level -
activate the weekly Shoegaze Spotlight!

Every week WTSH will present a shoegaze/dream pop band on Strangeways' blog, highlighting how very awesome the band is and how you should be listening to them and buying their music and supporting them because they deserve it.

This week's focus is on WTSH faves The KVB.
We at WTSH adore The KVB and after reading this, so will you.



Video: Into the Trees. Hall.

Video: The Brian Jonestown Massacre. Spacegirl (Revisited).

Bandcamp Track of the Day: Speedway Star. VHS Fever Dream.


Artist: Speedway Star
Track Title: VHS Fever Dream
Bandcamp.



vhs fever dream cover art

26 June 2012

Interview: John Andrew Fredrick of The Black Watch.

When The Sun Hits
Interviews
John Andrew Fredrick of
The Black Watch

The Black Watch is a band based in Santa Barbara, California, and is known for their dreamy, literate pop sound. Since the band's inception, TBW's only constant member has been singer, guitarist, and primary songwriter, John Andrew Fredrick, who, as the legend goes, formed TBW in 1987 - one day after seeing the London outfit The Lucy Show play to seven people at a State Street club (read WTSH's interview with Mark Bandola of The Lucy Show HERE).

The Black Watch has recorded and toured consistently throughout its history - a history nearing 25 years now - except for a brief period in 1997 when the band broke up. During this hiatus, Fredrick wrote The King of Good Intentions, a semi-autobiographical novel about an indie rock band. The band recorded a CD of the same title intended as a companion piece to the novel. To this date, TBW has recorded and released 14 full length LPs full of charming and clever pop songs.

The Black Watch has been on my radar for many years now, and I've never quite understood why such brilliance has largely gone unnoticed by so many. I fondly recall playing a track by TBW during my very first dj set (ever!) - for Rice University's now defunct radio station, KTRU 91.7fm, years and years ago. I didn't know it then (and I surely never would have fucking guessed), but one day I would have the chance to interview the illustrious John Andrew Fredrick. Well, that day has come. When The Sun Hits is honored to present the following interview with the man himself - John Andrew Fredrick of The Black Watch. Enjoy.

How and when was The Black Watch formed?

The band was formed in Santa Barbara in 1987 when I was teaching at UCSB, having just finished my doctoral dissertation and made a vow never to set pen to paper about anybody else's work ever again (Virginia Woolf was my topic) but to become an artist somehow. I started by writing 400 pages of a novel set in London and realized that I could write 4 songs in the time it took to write five pages of fiction. So - more than 20 years later I still have a band - plus I have gone back to writing fiction.

Can you tell us what the band has been working on and what you've got forthcoming in the near future (new releases, tour, etc.)?

We've just finished a new LP, the follow-up to last year's Led Zeppelin Five. It's called The End of When and it's coming out on Laughing Outlaw in Australia and New Zealand first. we were hoping-against-hope to be sued by the Zeppelin Trust for our irreverent title but that hasn't happened yet! I hope someone's lawyers get on that toute de suite! No: we didn't call the last record that in order to get sued--record clerks (the 14 and a half who are left) find the title funny, however. we just supported The Clean here in LA at The Echo; and we are meant to tour Australia when the new LP comes out!



Do you consider your music to be part of the current shoegaze/dream pop scene, or any scene? Defining one's sound by genre can be tiresome, but do you feel that the band identifies closely with any genre? How do you feel about genres in music, in a general sense?

The Black Watch have no problem being identified as a sort of dream pop band--after all, the original dream pop bands were The Beatles, The Pretty Things, and The Velvet Underground. we are chuffed to find that we have never (it wasn't a self-conscious move on our part) been a part of any scene here in Los Angeles--we have friends who are in bands, of course, but our attitude perhaps has been that scenes fade and good records last; hence, we've just concentrated on making artifacts (the new LP will be our 17th CD, I think--I’ve lost count).

Unabashedly, my favorite band of all time, aside from The Beatles, is My Bloody Valentine. I saw them play to ten people at the Club Lingerie in 1989; five of those people are, to this day, my friends! I have a vast collection of bands that were influenced by the Valentines. I am never not moved by dreamy, guitar-driven, transcendental melodies and breathy vocals. Although there are some rip-offs (The Pains of Being Pure at Heart come to mind) that irk me no end, and others (Ringo Deathstarr--very, very derivative) that don't chafe in the least! Isn't that interesting? It just goes to show you how very subjective music-following is--and how mercurial tastes can be. I have nothing against The Pains or their fans--and moreover, what do they need my approval for!? They've got many more followers than my band has!

As far as music genres and pigeonholing goes, I can't say that it's anything nefarious; people do need a reference point. As a rabid music fan myself, it has probably hurt me somehow. You see, I like reading reviews and interviews more than tuning in to alternative radio here in LA as a way of finding out about new music. Maybe if someone labeled a band like (back in the day) Gang of Four as "agropop dance" or "skronk" or something silly and reductive, I'd have missed out on a key discovery.

What do you think of modern shoegaze/dream pop/psychedelia artists, any favorites?

Let's see: current bands I like? That are shoegazy. There are occasional tracks I like that've come my way via Clairerecords, but I can't name anyone I’d fully endorse! sad! Beach House are for people who've never heard the goddam Cocteau Twins, and Yuck (an admitted guilty pleasure) recycle the obvious obligatory Dinosaur Jr and MBV. They are really good at it, however!

I wish I liked more things from today's scene. There are a number of Deerhunter songs I admire. They're hardly shoegaze, however. Idaho keep making, sporadically, good music. I love Idaho to death. I am more than ready for Kurt Heasley to release a new Lilys. They are something wonderful!

What is the most important piece of gear for your sound? Any particular guitars/pedals/amps that you prefer?

I bought Steven Schayer, the other guitarist and singer in The Black Watch and ex-The Chills member, a Holy Grail pedal that he's been getting some ridiculously quote-unquote out there sounds out of. I have never been an effects person: I have a Fender Bassman and a distortion pedal and I just turn it up up up. I can't play with something as simple as reverb. I like Jazzmasters and all my hollow body double-cutaways (Gretsch, Gibson ES 335, Harmony Rocket--for all you geeks out there).

What is your process for recording your music? What gear and/or software do you use? What would you recommend for others?

In the studio, 13 albums into it, I think I have touched a knob or fader maybe ten times. Honestly, I reckon that engineers and producers do what they do because they've mastered (ha-pun!) [WTSH falls down on the floor laughing] something special and that they're best left to do what they do. We use and have used ProTools since 2000 and that is a shame! And a boon, because it's so easy. It's too easy to make a record these days. It's still hard to make a great one, however.

My advice to other bands: make a great record. It's got to have songs! Not fucking jams or just nice parts or a concatenation of bits or a quote-unquote cool synth sound - it's got to sound like someone felt it, okay. Someone studied their Beatles and their Stones and Velvets and reached deep and wrote something!! More and more we tear the songs I write apart in rehearsal, then reassemble them in the studio. Steven's written two tracks for our new LP--which is good. He is much more meticulous than I am, much less prolific. And I love the way he writes.

How do you feel about the state of the music industry today? There is no doubt a massive change underway; how do you see it and do you feel it’s positive at all?

The state of the record industry is a welfare state. Full stop. Or a fiefdom. We're the serfs. No one knows what to do! That makes it sort of a melee, doesn't it? Should we put out a 7" just like in 1994? Should we give away everything? Try to get 10,000 likes on Wastebook? You tell us what we should do--cause we just keep on doing gigs and making songs up and recording them...one could get into a wax about it all day long, if one wanted to die an early death!! That's it! I should just die! (Our old lead guitarist and producer, Tim Boland, great Irish guy, used to tisk tisk John, The Black Watch will be massive--only you'll have to die to get the recognition you deserve as a songwriter! I love that Tim--such a pepper! He's maybe right though; the thing is, we don't care about being massive: we'd like to be big enough to tour constantly but we're okay. We're pretty happy and grateful for the cult-amount, very small, of fans we do have!!)

Do you prefer vinyl, CD, cassette tape or mp3 format when listening to music? Do you have any strong feelings toward any of them?

I just installed a tape deck in my Volvo and it has opened up a whole world of music that I bought 15 years ago! I prefer vinyl.

What artists (musicians or otherwise) have most influenced your work?

I think I talked about the biggest influences. One might add The Church and Robyn Hitchcock, The Jazz Butcher and Jesus and Mary Chain. The Zombies above all. Loads of poetry informs much of my writing. Favorites: T.S. Eliot, Shelley, Plath, Philip Larkin, Chaucer, Shakespeare, John Donne, Li-Young Lee. Plus - the films of David Lynch, Stanley Kubrick, Hitchcock, Wes and Paul Thomas Anderson.

Can you tell us a little about what you are currently into (books, films, art, bands, etc.)?

The book I am most into is the one I have just finished revising!! I have a second novel coming out on Full Court Press this year or early next: it's called The King of Good Intentions and it's about an indie rock band!! Surprise!!

It's very Martin Amis x Samuel Beckett x J.D. Salinger--meant to be very funny (and I hope people laugh out loud when they read it). There's going to be a CD included with the book by the "band" The Weird Sisters, whose formation and flowering the book chronicles. Yeah, it's a bit of a gimmick, but I hope it'll be fun. Henry Rollins was supposed to put it out 12 years ago but he was told by his lawyers and accountants he couldn't do (just as my book was going to be typeset) any books other than his own. You see, he lost 8 zillion on a hardback coffee table Metallica book or something! Like Metallica fans want a $50 book!! They want a t-shirt and a program to get signed and that's it. It was heartbreaking to have a novel accepted and then suffer such a fate; but things work out for the best, I believe, and 11 years later I revised it, made it funnier (I think) and more poetic and spritely and now it's gonna be issued!

What is your philosophy (on life), if any, that you live by?

I reckon that's my philosophy of life, as well. I don't trust people who ascribe to the "everything happens for a reason" pseudo-philosophy!! That's for lazy fuckers who have no ethos!! Or who can't deal with the essentially chaotic nature of things. Read Lucretius: that's my philosophy. Read Samuel Johnson. Then go play guitar!!



Bandcamp Track of the Day: Funeral Home. Stuck Here.


Artist: Funeral Home
Track Title: Stuck Here
Bandcamp.




Stuck Here cover art

24 June 2012

Set List for When The Sun Hits on Strangeways Radio, Aired June 20th, 2012.

band name/track title
loop. vapour.
moonbell. parallel.
ceremony. old.
ask for joy. gentle girl.
speedway star. cool as molly.
slowdive. she calls.
manorlady. ego oppression.
ride. dreams burn down.
souvenir driver. night bus.
the telescopes. precious little.
craft spells. sun trails.
the black watch. hardly nothing never ending.
girls names. i don't mind.

Part Time Punks Shoegaze Festival - TONIGHT! We'd do just about anything to go to this...


https://mail-attachment.googleusercontent.com/attachment/?ui=2&ik=925eb29135&view=att&th=137dd47cd4007767&attid=0.1.1&disp=inline&safe=1&zw&saduie=AG9B_P-ZXwbNXSr9EBkiVbuVWDne&sadet=1340562136222&sads=q2BmQ3XPr7wRLZgU_YOYt4UmzqU

PART TIME PUNKS SHOEGAZE FESTIVAL

SUNDAY, JUNE 24, 2012 at The Echoplex (all day, all ages).

An 11-band bill is split fairly evenly between classic Shoegaze bands of the early/mid 1990s, the new wave of Shoegaze bands (aka Newgaze) and Synthgaze, the futuristic hybrid bands fusing Shoegaze textures with electronic music.

At the top of the bill is Mark Gardener from RIDE, who has put together a special set of RIDE tracks which he will be performing with SKY PARADE as his backing band to celebrate the 20th Anniversary of RIDE's 2nd LP, Going Blank Again!!

The complete bill looks like this:

MARK GARDENER [of RIDE] [performing RIDE tracks with SKY PARADE]

SKY PARADE

WEEKEND [Slumberland Records]

LORELEI [Slumberland Records]

HALF STRING [recently reissued by Captured Tracks as part of their Shoegaze Archives]

ASTROBRITE

THE KVB [UK synthgaze band making their first U.S. appearance]

TROPIC OF CANCER

WHIRR

MOONBEAMS

TENNIS SYSTEM

Guest DJ BRAD LANER [of MEDICINE] [also reissued as part of CT's Shoegaze Archives]

KXLU, home of the Part Time Punks radio show, will be simulcasting the Fest from 8pm - 2am on 88.9FM in LA and streaming on-line at www.kxlu.com everywhere else!

BLVD Records Announces: ASTROBRITE DEBUTS WEST COAST PERFORMANCE + CHICAGO SEND-OFF SHOW.

https://mail-attachment.googleusercontent.com/attachment/?ui=2&ik=925eb29135&view=att&th=137e9ea07c467aec&attid=0.1&disp=inline&realattid=f_h3fhcsbq0&safe=1&zw&saduie=AG9B_P-ZXwbNXSr9EBkiVbuVWDne&sadet=1340561789808&sads=Jhj1RbLjj5AImjDop3R3jLbDDfk&sadssc=1

BLVD Records is SUPER STOKED to announce that legendary cult "beautiful noise/American shoegaze" progenitor Scott Cortez will be debuting ASTROBRITE on the West Coast this month. Astrobrite has been invited to the Part Time Punks Shoegaze Fest, and will be playing amongst legends such as Mark Gardener (RIDE) & Brad Laner (MEDICINE) + hot bands of the nu-gaze cult (WEEKEND, KVB) on Sunday, June 24.

Part Time Punks is one of California's longest-running weekly DIY events, taking place weekly at the Echo in Echo Park, LA & curated by promoter/DJ Michael Stock since 2005. Stock also hosts the critically-acclaimed Part Time Punks radio show on KXLU.

In preparation for his first California performance, Cortez will be leading an Astrobrite "send-off" show in Chicago at Late Bar, on Thursday, June 21. This special event will act as a fundraiser for Astrobrite's extra travel expenses for the festival. Excellent local drone/ambient/experimental guitarist Cinchel opens.

Live Astrobrite performances are EXTREMELY rare, so we're happy to announce these two special events as the success of our vinyl release of Astrobrite's "Crush" album continues to soar, AND as we begin preparations for our upcoming Astrobrite vinyl issue of "Pinkshinyultrablast" (due fall/winter of this year).

Cortez's new Astrobrite lineup also consists of Andrew Marrah (New Canyons, Airiel, Mahogany) on guitars/effects, and BLVD's own Melissa Geils on keyboards.

Cortez's new Astrobrite lineup also consists of Andrew Marrah (New Canyons, Airiel, Mahogany) on guitars/effects, and BLVD's own Melissa Geils on keyboards.

ASTROBRITE "KICK-OFF TO LA"
Thursday, June 21
Live: Astrobrite, Cinchel
DJs: Peroxide, Erik Void
Late Bar Chicago, 8:30pm, $7
Extra Info: http://www.facebook.com/events/474015365946743/

PART TIME PUNKS SHOEGAZE FESTIVAL
Sunday, June 24, 4:00pm
Echoplex, Los Angeles
Extra Info: http://www.facebook.com/events/320316938050422/

LINKS OF NOTE
Part Time Punks: http://parttimepunks.com
PTP Shoegaze Festival microsite: http://parttimepunks.com/shoegazefest/
PTP Shoegaze Fest on Strangeways Radio: http://www.strangewaysradio.com/blog/2012/06/11/part-time-punks-shoegaze-fest/
Astrobrite: http://www.facebook.com/astrobrite
Cinchel: http://cinchel.com/

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Bandcamp Track of the Day: Love Culture. Soul on the Sea.


Artist: Love Culture
Track: Soul on the Sea
Bandcamp.



Soul On the Sea cover art

Video: 2 Hearts and Chemicals. RPM.


22 June 2012

Bandcamp Track of the Day: Endless Wave. Future Shock.


Band: Endless Wave
Track: Future Shock
Bandcamp.




Notes from the Compound cover art

21 June 2012

Bandcamp Track of the Day: Ask for Joy. Gentle Girl.


Band: Ask for Joy
Track: Gentle Girl
Bandcamp.




Gentle Girl cover art

20 June 2012

Tonight! When The Sun Hits on Strangeways Radio. 9pm CST/10pm EST

Come join me this evening for When The Sun Hits on Strangeways Radio. When The Sun Hits is one full hour of distilled shoegazey goodness, so black out the windows, grab your headphones, and go down the rabbit hole tonight on Strangeways Radio.


Don't forget to log in to the Strangeways chatroom during the show to hang out with me and many other awesome people while we talk about the music that is airing in real time and god knows what else...

Tune in live every Wednesday, 10pm-11pm (EST), for When The Sun Hits on Strangeways Radio. Join us in the Strangeways chat room for additional entertainment!

Stream it here: http://www.strangewaysradio.com/

Bandcamp Track of the Day: A*Star. Drive It (Deep Cut Remix).


Band: A*Star.
Track: Drive It (Deep Cut remix).
Bandcamp.

A*Star Drive it Deep Cut Remix cover art


19 June 2012

Guitars...



Strangeways Radio Blog: Shoegaze Spotlight - A Weekly Gaze: Violens.


When The Sun Hits and Strangeways Radio are uniting on yet another level - activate the weekly Shoegaze Spotlight! Every week WTSH will present a shoegaze/dream pop band on Strangeways' blog, highlighting how very awesome the band is and how you should be listening to them and buying their music and supporting them because they deserve it.

This week's focus is on WTSH faves Violens. We at WTSH adore Violens and after reading this, so will you.


Bandcamp Track of the Day: Die Jungen. The Sun is Coming Up.


Band: Die Jungen.
Track: The Sun is Coming Up.
Bandcamp.


At Breath's End cover art

18 June 2012

Set List for When The Sun Hits on Strangeways Radio. Aired June 13th, 2012.

band name/track title
Avoxblue. Footfall.
Twin Sister. All Around & Away We Go (Teen Daze Remix).
Seafoam. Sarah.
2 Hearts & Chemicals. Opium (2 Hearts & Chemicals Remix).
Blouse. Ghost Dream.
Glowbug. The Cockroach.
Shoreline Is. Living Things.
Neon Indian. Psychic Chasms.
Nothing. Downward Years to Come.
Velochrome. The Gap in Your Head (Deep Cut Remix).
SPC ECO. You Tell Me (Buzz Mix).
Early Maze. Off the Radar.
Lockets. Camera Shy.

Bandcamp Track of the Day: Hazy Mountains. Eavesdrop.


Band: Hazy Mountains.
Track: Eavesdrop.
Bandcamp.



Lapis Lazuli cover art

17 June 2012

Bandcamp Track of the Day: Shoreline Is. I'd Hear the Clouds Move.



Band: Shoreline Is.
Track: I'd Hear the Clouds Move.
Bandcamp.



Deal Kindly cover art

13 June 2012

Set List for When The Sun Hits on Strangeways Radio. Aired June 6th, 2012.

band name. track title.

i break horses. winter beats.
craft spells. warmth.
silver swans. around you.
glowbug. where is my mind (pixies cover).
jesper lundager. december ramble.
peaking lights. synthy.
violens. so hard to see.
funeral home. a song you can fall asleep to.
exit music. the night.
tashaki miyaki. nothing can change this love.
SPC ECO. waste it all.
the high violets. x-tasy.
withershins. after dark.
sun glitters. things are.
fennesz. liminal.

Tonight! When The Sun Hits on Strangeways Radio. 9pm CST / 10pm EST.

Come join me this evening for When The Sun Hits on Strangeways Radio. When The Sun Hits is one full hour of distilled shoegazey goodness, so black out the windows, grab your headphones, and go down the rabbit hole tonight on Strangeways Radio.


Don't forget to log in to the Strangeways chatroom during the show to hang out with me and many other awesome people while we talk about the music that is airing in real time and god knows what else...

Tune in live every Wednesday, 10pm-11pm (EST), for When The Sun Hits on Strangeways Radio. Join us in the Strangeways chat room for additional entertainment!

Stream it here: http://www.strangewaysradio.com/

12 June 2012

Bandcamp Track of the Day: Sea Foam. Collapsed Lung.

Band: Sea Foam.
Track: Collapsed Lung.
Bandcamp.



Seafoam EP cover art

11 June 2012

Bandcamp Track of the Day: Mode Moderne. Electrocute Me.

Band: Mode Moderne.
Track: Electrocute Me.
Bandcamp.