Brooke Bentham: The Room Swayed
We thought she was a cool new singer from Nashville but she’s from South Shields. The music has a dreamy vibe to it, with a slight country tint (hence our erroneous Nashville attribution) and she’s got a voice to match. Opener Nowhere Near Sense is good, a kind of The xx meets Death Cab For Cutie. Heavy and Ephemeral is more of a pop tune while I Need Your Body slows it all down again. Closer I Loved The Way You Talked is so laid back it’s practically ambient. In places, this gets close to Meadowlark, whom we love (see review this page) but though we’ve played this EP a lot, we’ve never actually fallen in love with it. Though her online fans rave about Heavy and Ephemeral, we found it a little pedestrian. We can imagine that with someone else’s ears we would find it beautiful and mesmerising. Check it out if you like dreamy pop.
Modern Sky UK (sampler)
Modern Sky UK is a record label and this EP just landed mysteriously on our desk. It’s a sampler and only has “The Future Influences The Present Just As Much As The Past” and some Braille printed on the sleeve.
We love samplers and this one’s only fault is that it’s too short. On it are four really good UK indie bands, Catholic Action, Violet Youth, Fuss and Pixey. Catholic Action kick it off in lively style, the middle two bands are slower and Pixey end with a happy, cheery indie party song, somewhere between drum ‘n’ bass and a Caribbean party. We know nothing about any of the bands but hope they all turn up in a longer format soon. For fans of proper indie, this is a must-have set of songs.
Stop press: since writing the above, an email tells us that Catholic Action are from Glasgow and streaming a new song Propaganda, taken from their debut album In Memory Of, out soon.
AyOwA: Eremit EP
AyOwA are Danish and sing in Danish, though we never noticed the latter fact until we read a review. The other week we mentioned someone sounding like Bristol’s atmospheric, down-tempo trip hop outfit Ilya, but AyOwA, who also have a fondness for names for a preponderance of vowels, really sound like Ilya. Haunting/gloomy vocals, slow/semi-ambient synths, and overall a dreamy vibe that sounds like it spends its days off listening to jazz.
This came as MP3s, so the order we play them sees the title tracks first, followed by Fri, which has more pretensions to be a pop tune, though there’s not a lot of variation throughout. Try the title track or Sandkorn (it means grain of sand, obviously). Well worth a listen if you like gentle electronica / trip hop. Velbekom!