Song to watch
The War on Drugs – Red Eyes
Like an 80s/90s Springsteen soaked in big lashes of Dire Straits and Bob Dylan, The War on Drugs have released one of the greatest songs of 2013 just when we thought it was all done and dusted. Lending more than a few nods to Arcade Fire, they evoke the same kind of emotional response that I remember when I first listened to Neon Bible. But The War on Drugs wrap all the intrigue and quietly evoked storytelling into a truly rock and roll package for added glory and pleasure. They feel like a band that are at their prime in a live setting but this feels so right in all it’s recorded glory. Froth-worthy indeed.
Best Video Clip
World’s End Press – Drag Me Home
Showcasing more of the wiry melody and soft disco synths that allow World’s End Press to display their true genii. Drag Me Home is fun and weird, which is probably the only way you can really visually accompany a reasonably somber track such as this.
Palms – A Supposedly Fun Thing I’ll Never Do Again
Normally I’m not a fan of live videos where the director/editor has tried to match up live footage of the band playing to a specific song of which the live footage is awkwardly out of time or of a different song entirely. Normally those videos are shit, but Palms latest video just has a really cool vibe to it. Also, that cliché out of sync playing is matched up pretty well and the vocals hidden cleverly by some blurring effects. But then again, having released on of the best albums of 2013, it would be hard for Palms not to impress me.
Milwaukee Banks – Pluto Bounce
Grainy landscapes with a dark medieval edge to the imagery this video is a simple but effective accompaniment to the relaxed rhymes and driving beats of the track.
Featured local band
3 releases over the last 3 years have helped cement Featherweight’s place in the next crop of Australian hardcore bands for the coming years, from the South Australian scene at the very least. In addition to support slots for bands like La Dispute and Pianos Become The Teeth, the band have built support with a strong DIY ethic. They put on nearly all of their own shows and their guitarist recorded and mixed the majority of their musical output.
The latest offering, a 12” titled Exhaustion, is their most accomplished work to date. It is relatively short in length but it more than makes up for this in post rock influenced soundscapes of anguish. A concept record based on the true story of a man wrongly sent to prison for murder at the hands of some sloppy cops, the anguish generated here is easy to latch on to and empathise with. This is as much the strength of the layered guitars and unique riffs as it is the gut wrenching, powerful lead vocals and occasional bursts of emotion from the backing vocalist which add whole other dimensions to the music. 10mg Diazapan and Gin is a standout track from the record and is the perfect introduction to the band’s sound.