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Tribal drums, guitars that churn and slash. On their fourth EP, Vow, Hermetic Delight meld classic post punk with shoegaze accents, infused with desperate insistence. Due 15 April on October Tone (Musicast Distribution), Hermetic Delight kick it up another notch, demanding your undivided attention. And right from the opening anthem (elegy? processional?) of “War is Closer”, you can tell that Vow isn’t quite like anything else. Press play and read on.

While “War is Closer” sets the cornerstone for the new EP, it only serves as a guidepost, not the endpoint. “Circles” wails with Siouxsie-like insistence and a fever-dream buildup, and feels like it might have been right at home on your early eighties mixtape alongside Xmal Deutschland. With its less-than-evocative title, “Interlude” might seem a toss-off, a bridge between the worlds. Don’t get comfortable. This brief but beautiful mess polishes psych, tribal noise, and an almost Doorsian bent, just to keep you on your toes.

“Vow” and “Murderbeat” follow this interlude, and the proceedings have buy cheap metronidazole online built to this particular moment. “Vow” feels all like love and betrayal, with Zey’s vocals sprawling over the top of the guitar haze. “Murderbeat” is an exercise in tension-building and unease-making, the natural conclusion of spending too much time contemplating the punishment for betrayal.

“Marian” is a jewel of dark goth-gaze pop, layered exquisitely, and you may well end up putting this track on repeat, just to get lost in the feeling. The elegaic”Outro” really is the only fitting ending to this EP, looping back to the opener “War is Closer”, but running its main theme through a Lynch/Badalamenti ‘mood processor’. Well thought-out, brilliantly executed, this is a fine taste of what Hermetic Delight is capable of. If you’re looking for something emotionally engaging, a bit more ambitious than your standard fare, Hermetic Delight welcomes you to their parlor on Vow. Be warned, however, there may be no escape.

Visit Hermetic Delight via their website, where Vow is available for preorder, and follow them on Facebook. Photo Credit: Gauthier Humbert.

Oakland’s Night Shapes today graced us with the premiere of their latest single, “Breathe”. It’s a heady mixture of psych, old-school punk, surf rock and reverb. The track was recorded by front person Jim Morose, then mixed and mastered at Oakland’s Secret Bathroom by engineer Andrew Oswald.


Self-described as “four dudes playing rock & roll with delay and stuff,” Night Shapes are influenced by bands like The Brian Jonestown Massacre, Fugazi, Jesus Lizard, and My Bloody Valentine. Towards the end of their new track you can hear a strong influence by The Jesus and Mary metronidazole medication online Chain.

We’ve seen their live show, and it’s always full of propulsion, energy and electricity. Night Shapes will be on the road starting with the much anticipated DreamGaze Festival in LA with headliners like No Age, Brothers In Law, and Part Time on 4/2 at secret locations downtown LA. Download “Breathe” for free (name-your-price model) on their Bandcamp page.

Upcoming Shows:

3/26 SF @ The Cave (Freak Nest Fest)
4/2 LA @ DreamGaze Festival LA
4/3 SD @ Tree House
4/5 LA @ Ham & Eggs Tavern
4/29 Davis @ Dads Place (KVDS)

Follow Night Shapes via their website, on Bandcamp, Facebook and Twitter. Photo courtesy Cyn Malditos.

We’ve been following Toronto’s Soft Wounds since their first demo EP release, and were lined up in anticipation of the first proper long-player. It’s no cookie-cutter shoegaze or dream pop release, as it features some solid songwriting, using genre identifiers only to draw curious listeners into their sonic world. The reverb is warm and generous, the feels are real.


“Baby Blue”, the teaser single released last week, gives a pretty good idea where this project is headed, with a respectful nod to forbears like Ride, and the soft/loud dynamics of Teenage Fanclub. It’s an anthem for the cool kids, who wouldn’t be caught dead listening to generic indie dreck at frat parties.


The real highlight of Soft Wounds is the churning storm of “You Can’t Stay Here”. The hook is undeniable. It feels both familiar and classic, but without being a rehash/recycle, and jangles to a full stop after a rollicking ride. Probably a lock for regular airplay rotation in no time.

It’s not a perfectly-formed album, by any means. Not all the choices make immediate sense, but the songs grow on you. There are ebbs and flows to Soft Wounds, as hard-charging tunes give way to slow-burn torch songs, but the imprint here is strong, the identity fixed. Soft Wounds does what they do, and are fully comfortable expressing themselves within the parameters they’ve set. They’re not looking to reinvent the sound, but they will draw you in to their version of it.

So has Toronto become Canada’s shoegaze capital? Hard to argue, with a list of luminaries like Indoor Voices, Beliefs, Iris (R.I.P.), Rituals, Elsa, RLMDL and Lust. Whatever’s got into the water in Toronto, we’ll have some of that.

Available now. Buy Soft Wounds debut S/T LP on Bandcamp, and follow their exploits on Facebook.

Outside of classic Curve, who’s ever heard of great shoegaze you can dance to? A Shoreline Dream premieres their upcoming single, “Revolvist”, and it may have you disoriented from the opening bars. Shoegaze meets postpunk meets dark, gothy undertones in this propulsive track. Guitar that sounds like a hazy Lycia soundscape meets a Sisters of Mercy (or early Cocteau Twins) bassline, and goth heaven is achieved, without losing sight of the signature sound that makes A Shoreline Dream one of the leading lights of the neo-shoegaze movement.


Is “Revolvist” a new direction for A Shoreline buy flagyl Dream? Doubtful. Just another facet in the diamond for this well-accomplished, multifaceted band. We’ll take more of this any damn day. Digital release available 04 March, pre-order now through both Amazon (international) and iTunes.

The video for “Revolvist” is an extension of the song itself, featuring Denver side-show performing legends “The Scissor Sweethearts”, Siara Gray and Serana Rose. Filmed entirely on location in the outdoor set of Shoreline Studios, which resides in the very neighborhood named after infamous circus madman PT Barnum.

Follow A Shoreline Dream at their website, via their Latenight Weeknight Records label, on Facebook and Twitter.

What shoegaze / dream pop albums rocked your soul in 2015? It’s our 2015 Album of the Year Poll! C’mon, you know you missed it. Each voter gets three votes per person. No EPs or singles are represented in this poll, those will come down later (most likely next week for the EPs). Share your love of great music and vote! Don’t let those of lesser taste (or generic indie hipsters) take advantage, and skew the results.


Results due in one week! Vote responsibly. Don’t drink and vote. We suspect we’ll do three shows, including album of the year, EP of the year, all leading up to our annual clusterbomb Song of the Year program in January 2016. Because we’re masochists, and live on stress and caffeine.

Crescendo took the West Coast by storm last year with the album Lost Thoughts, anchored by tunes full of optimism and longing. It’s been a long wait since then. Personnel changes, one false start and much songwriting later, Crescendo has finally revealed “Repulsor”, the first track from Unless, their first album for Italy’s respected We Were Never Being Boring label. The same joy, churning and frenetic pace you loved from the Lost Thoughts LP, you’ll find that and more on Unless.

 

Chief visionary Gregory Cole found common cause with new Crescendo members Olive Kimoto and Jess Rojas, who add another layer of dreamy romanticism to the sound and the vocals. “Writing music has always metronidazole buy online australia been the way for my subconscious to communicate with me,” says Cole. “When I’m put on the spot to write lyrics for a composition, my heart will force out my dearest thoughts that aren’t always known to me.” Whatever the formula is, it’s obviously working.

Preorders are now live for Unless, via We Were Never Being Boring, available on colored heavy splatter transparent vinyl, digital and compact disc.

Upcoming live dates:

11/18-11/20 TEDMED House Band (private event);
Coachella, CA 11/24 The Hideout with Millionyoung;
San Diego, CA 11/25 Harvard & Stone DreamGaze Festival Presents: The New Division[DJ Set] + PART TIME + Millionyoung & Crescendo; Los Angeles, CA

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Follow Crescendo via Facebook and Twitter for all the updates, and preorder Unless here.

June 2014. Last we’d heard from Virginia’s Keep, Hypnosis for Sleep had just been released. A tasty blend of atmospherics and power chords, Keep was clearly inspired by bands like Nothing and Cloakroom, but with a clear vision of what their sound should be. And the nagging hook from “Old Man” never lets go (graduated to our permanent rotation in one day). Describing this as a punk/shoegaze hybrid really sells Keep short, as it ignores the mastery of what they do with the space between. There’s power in the chords, but there’s beauty in the spaces.

 
Now Keep returns for their first release after signing with Ohio’s Mayfly Records, and it seems like they’ve found a natural home there. Psychorama opens with the reverb-drenched vistas of “Latch”, and invites you on a journey into the heart of the sound. Elements of shoegaze, ambient, even classic doom metal are all perfectly balanced, so that no one voice dominates the others. The always-haunting vocals bring the humanity to the project, fueled by longing and loss.

 

You can sense a progression, and an attention to detail, that makes Keep a band to be reckoned with. They’re exploring the contours of their own sound, and finding new depths of feeling. Rumor has it that the three tracks that make up Psychorama took nine months to complete. But the finished product proves the effort was worth the work, and the wait.

Psychorama is available for preorder now, with a vinyl first pressing limited to 300 on Coke-Bottle Clear, expected to ship November 20, and exclusively from Mayfly Records.

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Follow Keep via Twitter, and keep up with Mayfly Records at their website, and via Facebook and Twitter.

We’ve been stalking Melbourne’s hazy Crimsonettes for six months now. Early Soundcloud posts let us know there was something sparkly going on here, and all we had to do was wait for an official release date. We even begged for a pre-release track to push on air, which they graciously allowed for. Now they’ve finally released the EP they’ve promised, and it’s a stunner. Sickly Sweet EP released to Bandcamp on October 29th, and allows for no filler. Our closest reference point to this sonic swell is classic Waldo & Marsha, or perhaps Slowdive with stronger lead lines. Part dream-pop wash, part hazy shoegaze, with hints of neo-psych, all are wrapped up in a strong pop sensibility. Both male and female vocals round out the presentation, sometimes separated, sometimes forming a sugar-drenched chorus.

 

Each Crimsonettes track unfolds at its own pace, usually beginning quietly, mildly, then building to massive walls of melody and sound. The title track alone is a great example of the technique, and the blueprint for all that comes after. This music isn’t intended to challenge you, so much as draw you in and envelop you. For a debut EP, Sickly Sweet is pretty much everything we’d counted on. Expect this to crack more than a few end-of-year Top Ten lists.

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Stalk Crimsonettes on Facebook and Twitter, and purchase “Sickly Sweet EP” on Bandcamp now. No, not later, now. As close to nowish as possible.

angel-falls-smTwo musical projects, begun decades ago, thousands of miles apart. Suddenly two very impressive talents meet over the vast interwebs, and begin a beautiful collaboration. We interviewed Dan Ballek of Angel Falls (St. Paul, Minnesota), and Paul Lopez of Spell 336 (Central California), to talk a little about this amazing joint effort. Press ‘play’, and read what they had to say about this particularly dreamy collaboration. If the Cocteau Twins-esque bassline doesn’t strike you upside the head right from go, you may be reading the wrong blog. Just sayin’. By the time the hazy guitar chime kicks in, sonic heaven is commenced.

 

DKFM: First, for Dan. Tell us a little about the Angel Falls project, and the music you’ve been releasing this year?

Dan, Angel Falls: My previous band, which was together for 20 years, broke up a couple years ago. We didn’t get too far, although we did put out a CD in 1997. I was the songwriter, and I had a few songs left over that we never properly recorded. So, I decided to finally learn how to use this new-fangled digital audio workstation technology and record a few of those old tracks, and maybe try my had at writing a few new ones, to see if I “still had it”.

The first EP, “Part 1”, was one old track (“Angel Falls”) and a couple of new ones, which didn’t turn out too bad, I think. “Painting After Midnight”, “Carousel” and “One Hand Clapping” followed a short time later, and that was all older material that never got proper treatment. “Anonymous” was two new tracks that I’d written this spring, and quite frankly I was suprised at how well they turned out. I guess I still had something to say, or at least I could still write songs!

DKFM: Next, for Paul. Spell 336 has had a few tracks out for years now, but isn’t this the first time you’ve lent the 336 moniker to a collaborative project, and the first NEW 336 music in years?

Paul, Spell 336: The Spell 336 tracks have been around since 1992. At that time the tracks were written and recorded and that was it. I felt that the tracks could have been recorded and mixed better. Only a few individuals at that time heard what had been recorded. After a short period of time I grabbed all of the master tapes and put them at the bottom of my dresser where they stayed until 2008. In ’08 I retrieved the tapes and created a Myspace page for Spell 336. It started off a little slowly but quite a lot of people were listening to the tracks and started to spread the music to everyone and it just started to have a life of it’s own. And it is all still here.

This is my first collaboration with Angel Falls (Dan) and I really hope that it will continue. I don’t think that technically it be called Spell 336 and Angel Falls. Spell is on a very long hiatus. The other individual who was part of Spell left the group quite a long time ago. I would love to carry on Spell. I could find other musicians to create a working band and see what happens. I would love to have Dan in the group. But performing live is a sore point with me and especially Dan. I know we can pull it off easily. I have not performed live since 1994 and that was a show for Spell. But who knows what the future may hold?

As for new music from Spell you guessed correctly. There is a backlog of songs that were written for Spell but were never recorded. I was the one who wrote the tracks but I concentrated the most on writing lyrics. Collaborating with Dan has pulled me out of my slumber and has given me the chance to write once again. I must confess the last time I actually had written a song was in 1992. But I am feeling inspired by Dan and what he has done in the studio and I am glad we are doing this. Speaking to Dan via telephone we have the same ideas when it comes to writing music and recording, etc…. That makes me happy!

DKFM: How did the two of you become aware of each other, and what made you decide to collaborate?

Dan, Angel Falls: We’d been in touch via Facebook and other social media and Paul had expressed how much he liked what I was doing with AF. Truthfully, if it weren’t for him and The Shoegaze Collective (and via TSC, DKFM), I doubt anybody else would have heard of AF. He was an early fan and a big supporter. We talked a bit online and realized that we had very similar tastes in music– not just shoegaze, but also a lot of other stuff you’d never suspect (I won’t go into it, but let’s just say I think we both have an affinity for ’70s AM Radio pop. It’s what we grew up listening to!).

Paul, Spell 336: I blame Greg (DJ Heretic) at DKFM. He posted a link on the TSC wall, tagged me and told me to listen to the track to see if it sounded familiar. When I listened to the track I thought that it was a new Kitchens Of Distinction track. Everyone knows I am a big fan of KOD and Dan’s vocal are a spot on match for Patrick Fitzgerald who is the lead vocalist for KOD. After listening over and over to Dan’s music I sent him a message of how much I liked his music and maybe in the future we can do some music together and he also agreed after hearing some of my music.

DKFM: It started with an exquisite cover of Spell 336’s “Silence”. Dan, what motivated you to take that on, and how do you feel about how it came out?

Dan, Angel Falls: “Silence” was a true gift from Paul. He asked if I’d like to try my hand at “Silence”, and I jumped at the chance. It’s a beautiful song, and something I could absolutely relate to. It’s the first time I’d ever recorded a track by someone else, and I think it turned out beautifully. Sometimes I listen to it and get shivers, it’s such a beautiful song. When I was doing it, I was so worried that it wouldn’t turn out well enough. I was really unsure, and I ran things by him at least once a day to make sure they were heading in the right direction. I bet I did half a dozen mixes and numerous takes before I thought it sounded well enough to show to Paul. I think it turned out really, really well, and I know we’ve gotten some great feedback on it.

DKFM: Paul, were you aware that the “Silence” cover was in the works, or did you wake up to a surprise? And what was your first reaction when you heard it?

Paul, Spell 336: I was aware of the cover of “Silence.” I approached Dan after a few weeks and asked him if he would be interested in doing a cover of the song. I knew from listening to his music that he could give the song some justice and he agreed to record the track. I believe I told him to record the track his own way and I never pressured him into recording the track my way. It was all Dan. I had “Silence” covered a few months ago by a great female, singer songwriter named Anna Madorsky. She is a good friend and put a different twist on “Silence” and I loved it. To be honest I feel the tracks have been covered beautifully and that will be it. I just want those two covers of “Silence” to be the only ones in the world. Period!

As for my reaction to Dan’s version of “Silence”, it left me speechless. He covered the track as how I really envisioned and heard it in my mind. I was stunned! I still am. I played the finished master of the song over and over. It really made me emotional and to this day it still does. I listen to Dan’s cover every day! It also resonated with a lot of listeners who have embraced the track which made me feel good. But Dan is the one who hit the home run on this track. I am grateful for his version and as far as I am concerned I could not have been happier!

DKFM: Tell us about the process of collaborating, writing and recording together, thousands of miles apart.

Dan, Angel Falls: After “Silence”, we vowed to work again. I can usually put music together with not too much trouble, but lyrics have always been difficult for me for some reason and they always come last when I write alone. Thankfully, Paul provided a few inspiring lines I was able to set to the music and they matched up PERFECTLY with the mood of the songs. He was also an invaluable sounding board, sonically speaking, on what each song needed as far as sounds– more/less guitar, more drums, different melody– even if the track was mixed too far to one channel! I think the material on “Touch The Sun” is probably the best stuff I’ve ever had a hand in. And I doubt it would have turned out as well as it did without Paul’s input.

Paul, Spell 336: It really is not that difficult. Especially when you are collaborating with someone who shares the same mindset as you. We are both on the same wavelength and it shows in the music. We bounce ideas off one another, lyrics, recording…. Everything! And because of that chemistry it works.

DKFM: Describe the sound. If you had to describe this project to someone who’d never heard it, what would you say?

Dan, Angel Falls: Hmmmm…. that’s a tough question, actually. Think Cocteau Twins meets Kitchens of Distinction while Ride-ing to a gig with Catherine Wheel where Loop are attempting to cover 10cc’s “I’m Not In Love” with three singers, one of whom might possibly be Morrissey but with less cool hair. 😉

Paul, Spell 336: I agree with Dan’s description of our sound! How can you argue with that???

DKFM: Do you expect this to be an ongoing collaboration?

Dan, Angel Falls: Absolutely. It’s amazing what you can do with technology these days, and it’s great to work with someone like Paul who seems to get where I’m coming from and where I want to go next. We haven’t actually “played” on a recording together yet, but I imagine that’s the next step. I’ll be out his way this summer to visit family, and I’m sure we’ll finally get to meet face to face. I don’t know if I’ll have room enough to pack my guitar rig, but I’ll have a laptop with me, for sure.

Paul, Spell 336: YES!!!!

DKFM: What’s next for each of you?

Dan, Angel Falls: More writing, more recording, more of the same, I hope! I really enjoy working with Paul and he’s got lots of great ideas and together I think we make a very good team. I’m looking into getting some of the previous releases remastered and putting out something physical (CD, Vinyl, 8-Track, whatever), in the next few months. I stopped making music for a long time, but it really is in my blood. It keeps me sane, keeps me happy, keeps me balanced. I will keep doing it until they pry my guitar from my cold dead hands.

Paul, Spell 336: Continue writing as much as possible, working on The Shoegaze Collective sites spreading the word on what we are about musically and continue collaborating with Dan. There is so much music left for us to do and I am excited about the future. Music also keeps me as sane as possible. I need music to function and to breathe. So far everything is right on schedule. Going to travel on this ride for as long as possible and make some beautiful music along the way….

Grab a copy of “Touch the Sun” single on Bandcamp, follow Spell 336 on Bandcamp and Facebook, follow Angel Falls on Bandcamp, Facebook and Twitter, and do follow Paul’s monster Twitter news conglomerate, The Shoegaze Collective (highest recommendation).

 

Minutes ago, Shojo Winter dropped their debut EP, Eternal Snow. Helmed by half of Crisis Arm, Patrick Capinding and Kevin McVey teamed up to explore their roots, and explore a sound quite different from the Crisis Arm sturm & drang. We caught up with Kevin to ask him what this is all about. Eternal Snow streams below, press ‘play’ and read our interview.


DKFM:
Tell us what’s the motivation behind this new project? Shojo Winter certainly SEEMS different from what you might expect from half of Crisis Arm!

Kevin: Shojo Winter was born from longing. It’s much more in the vein of old Crisis Arm material, I feel.

DKFM: Instrumentation. Who’s doing what? And how comfortable were both of you stretching your skills on different instruments?

Kevin: In Shojo Winter, we kind of jam material with Pat on guitar and myself on drums. We kind of guide each other a bit and then work on vocals/lyrics/bass together. On the recording, Pat plays guitar/vocals and I play drums and bass. We’re both pretty comfortable with this setup since this is originally how Crisis Arm was in the beginning.

DKFM: Would you consider this a “studio project”? It’d be difficult to duplicate this on stage with two primary players, right?

Kevin: Shojo Winter will definitely be a project played live. We are playing our first show (today, in fact) in Pomona, CA, at The dA Center for the Arts. We have our good flagyl online overnight shipping homie Patty Bautista playing bass for us live for now. Really glad to have him help us out with this!

DKFM: Any particular “sound” that inspired Shojo Winter? And how would you describe the sound of this project?

Kevin: Definitely a lot of Cocteau Twins/Lowlife/Chameleons/Cure influence for this project, as well as a lot of post-punk/wave, shoegaze. Really wanted to focus on dynamics and beauty with this. I guess you could call it “dreampostgothwave” haha. Yeah, that’s what I’m going to call it for now.

DKFM: Is this a one-off, or perhaps the start of something long-term?

Kevin: This is definitely the start of something long-term and we have a lot of passion for it, which i hope lasts! We both feel really good about it.

DKFM: What’s next for Shojo Winter?

Kevin: For now, just more writing and shows. The Eternal Snow EP was something that just came together really fast and natural for us. It was really fun to do and we want to keep it fun so we’ll continue to work this way. Hoping to jump on some rad shows in the future, but for now, who knows!
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Grab your copy of Shojo Winter’s Eternal Snow EP at their Bandcamp today, and follow them on Facebook. Could be the start of something special.
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