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Category Archives: Shoegaze

Phantogram and The Veldt Spring Eastern U.S. Tour, March 11-17 11 March 2017

Phantogram and The Veldt to Embark on East Coast Tour, March 11-17

Alternative pop icons Phantogram and shoegaze alternative soul pioneers The Veldt have announced they will play six exclusive U.S. East Coast cities before the former departs for their European tour. The duo will again return to the U.S.A. in mid-April for two separate appearances at Coachella.

Phantogram is touring in support of their recently released their third studio album ‘Three’ (Republic Records). Consisting of Josh Carter (guitars) and Sarah Barthel (keyboards), the duo formed in 2007. On ‘Three’, they take their sound in an enthralling, darker direction, adding new textures to their signature style. This album represents a new creative peak they’ve been building towards for nearly a decade. The latest chapter in the duo’s impressive ascent to the forefront of alternative pop, this iridescent record glows with warmth even as it explores the desolation of personal pain. This is also proof that nothing, at this point, can hold them back.

This six-date joint tour kicks off on Saturday, March 11 at Chicago’s Riviera Theatre, followed by dates in St. Paul, MN (Palace Theatre), Madison, WI (Orpheum Theater), Urbana, IL (Canopy Club), Cincinnati, OH (Bogart’s), and Atlanta, GA (The Tabernacle).

The Veldt are touring in support of their EP ‘The Shocking Fuzz of Your Electric Fur: The Drake Equation’ the band’s first new recording in fifteen years, which will be released worldwide on June 2 via Schoolkids Records, home to artists such as Adam Franklin & Swervedriver, Tommy Keene and Bettie Serveert with a history of collaboration with artists such as New Model Army, Daniel Lanois and Emm Gryner.

The Veldt formed in the late 80’s in Raleigh amongst the royalty of the legendary North Carolina music scene, including bands such as Superchunk, Archers of Loaf, The Connells, Dillon Fence, The dBs, Squirrel Nut Zippers, and Ryan Adams. Pitchfork recently included their album ‘Afrodisiac’ in the top 50 shoegaze albums eve released. Today their musical output is in the same ballpark as A.R.Kane, Cocteau Twins, Massive Attack, and Jesus & Mary Chain.

Signed to Capitol Records in 1989 and eventually Mercury Records, The Veldt embarked on a musical journey that changed their lives. The soon found themselves in the studio with dream-gaze guru Robin Guthrie, touring America with Cocteau Twins and the UK with The Jesus and Mary Chain and working with leading producers Lincoln Fong of Moose on their debut album ‘Marigolds’ and Ray Schulman (Bjork, Sugarcubes, The Sundays) on ‘Afrodisiac’. The Veldt were a sensation from the start and part of a movement of innovators, who came of musical age at a time when rhythmic rebels were reflective, gritty and wild. Their sound inspired future generations of alternative artists, including TV On the Radio.

The Veldt have collaborated with TV On The Radio, Mos Def, The Jesus & Mary Chain, Lady Miss Kier (Deee-Lite), and most recently with A.R.Kane, and have shared the stage with the likes of The Pixies, Throwing Muses, Echo & The Bunnymen, Cocteau Twins, Manic Street Preachers, The Jesus and Mary Chain, Oasis and Living Colour.

The band reformed in 2016 and their new EP started to make the rounds with a 2016 vinyl release via Manchester’s Leonard Skully Records. Their return was met with incredible enthusiasm and significant press attention, including from The Guardian (UK), who say “the new songs invite paradoxical praise: serenely assaultive and vertiginously soothing.” In the past year, the band did a mini-tour with The Brian Jonestown Massacre, embarked on two Canadian tours, toured and played multiple festivals across Europe.

TOUR DATES
Saturday, March 11:  Chicago, IL – Riviera Theatre
Sunday, March 12:  St Paul, MN – Palace Theatre
Monday, March 13:  Madison, WI – Orpheum Theatre
Tuesday, March 14:  Urbana, IL – Canopy Club
Thursday, March 16:  Cincinnati, OH – Bogart’s
Friday, March 17:  Atlanta GA – The Tabernacle

 

The Veldt – In a Quiet Room (Leonard Skully Records 9 December 2016)

Shoegaze Pioneers The Veldt Release ‘In a Quiet Room’ with New Video from Tokyo

NYC-Raleigh four-piece The Veldt have released a new video for ‘In a Quiet Room’, created by Tokyo-based videographer Toshikazu Kaneiwa. This track comes from their five-track EP ‘The Shocking Fuzz of Your Electric Fur’, released via Manchester label Leonard Skully Records.

With 4AD legendary recording artist A.R.Kane contributing production on this EP, it effectively merges the alternative bliss rock sound The Veldt has become known for with the hallmark dreamy electronica that led to A.R.Kane becoming famed as ‘father of dreampop’. These tracks combine intense energy, layers of atmosphere and guitar with beautiful falsetto vocals.

The Veldt are identical twins Daniel (guitar, vocals) and Danny Chavis (guitar), Hayato Nakao (bass) and Marvin Levi (drums).  Upon signing to Capitol Records in 1989, they recorded a debut album with Cocteau Twins dream-gaze guru Robin Guthrie, which was never released, and then recorded a new once, called ‘Marigolds’, with Lincoln Fong (Moose).

After switching labels, Mercury Records released ‘Afrodisiac’ in 1994, produced by Ray Shulman (The Sundays, Bjork, Sugarcubes), before changing their name to Apollo Heights (they have since changed it back to The Veldt). Earlier this month, Pitchfork included this album in their top 50 shoegaze albums of all time, calling this “the great lost American shoegaze classic, with influences from Prince to Cocteau Twins to A.R. Kane to the Jesus and Mary Chain (who contributed a remix) fused into something beautiful and unique”.

Video producer Toshikazu Kaneiwa is an indie filmmaker hailing from Tokyo, Japan. A long-time friend of the band, their support for each other’s art has been mutually complementary. Veldt bassist Hayato Nakao composed music for some of Toshikazu’s short films, including “Believe” and “Surface”, while he would offer his skills in photography and creating videos for the band (then Apollo Heights). “They guided my soul when I was in NYC in 2001-2014,” explains Toshikazu.

“I was truly inspired when I heard ‘In a Quiet Room’. This sound is so beautiful and sad, and I felt compelled to do the visual work for this song,” explains Toshikazu Kaneiwa. “At the same time, I met k.a.n.a., who is an artist with so much talent – she can dance, act, paint and sing… and I got an idea for the video and I told her my directional plan. She said yes. I really appreciate that she brought a very strong performance into this video.”

The Veldt were part of a movement of innovators who came of musical age at a time when rhythmic rebels were reflective, gritty and wild. Their sound inspired many alternative artists, including TV On the Radio, and led to them working together. They’ve also collaborated with Mos Defand Lady Miss Kier (Deee-Lite), and have toured and played with The Pixies, Throwing Muses, Echo & The Bunnymen, Cocteau Twins, Manic Street Preachers, The Jesus and Mary Chain, Oasis, Living Colour, and most recently with The Brian Jonestown Massacre.

‘The Shocking Fuzz of Your Electric Fur’ EP marks the band’s re-emergence after a notable hiatus, going down in history as one of the most memorable shoegaze comebacks in 2016, as demonstrated by their recent North American and European tours. In early 2017, The Veldt will release new music through SonaBLAST! Records. The new EP is available on vinyl from Manchester-based Leonard Skully Records and on CD and digitally at http://theveldtmusic.bandcamp.com.

Keep up with The Veldt 
Website | Facebook | Twitter | Reverbnation | Bandcamp | YouTube

Keep up with Leonard Skully Records 
Website | Facebook | Twitter | Soundcloud | YouTube

 
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Posted by on November 23, 2016 in Shoegaze

 

Video on The Veldt’s History

 
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Posted by on September 17, 2016 in Shoegaze

 

The Veldt – European Tour / ‘The Shocking Fuzz of Your Electric Fur’ EP (Leonard Skully Records 2016)

Legendary Alternative Soul Shoegazers The Veldt Kick Off European Tour.

the-veldt-the-shocking-fuzz-of-your-electric-fur-cover

Just days after completing their Central Canadian tour, The Veldt have just kicked off their European tour with Reverence Festival Valada in Portugal. This tour will also take them to Spain, Italy, France, the UK, Sweden and Denmark.

The Veldt are perhaps the most renowned protégés of Robin Guthrie (Cocteau Twins), apart from Lush, and contemporaries of A.R.Kane. Apart from collaborating with those two artist, they have also worked with TV On The Radio, Mos Def and Lady Miss Kier (Deee-Lite), and have toured and played with The Pixies, Throwing Muses, Echo & The Bunnymen, Cocteau Twins, Manic Street Preachers, The Jesus and Mary Chain, Oasis, Living Colour and TV on the Radio, among others. Most recently they toured East coast dates with The Brian Jonestown Massacre for their U.S. tour.

This will be the first official tour of mainland Europe for the The Veldt in promotion of their new EP ‘The Shocking Fuzz of Your Electric Fur’During the Italian leg of the tour, they will tour with Rome-based three-piece WEIRD., one of the foremost shoegaze artists from southern Europe, with support from Lady Sometimes Records. Highlights of this tour include the Reverence Valada Festival, Liverpool Psych Festival, and GataFest Sweden.

The Veldt were a sensation from the start as they became a part of a movement of innovators who came of musical age at a time when rhythmic rebels were reflective, gritty and wild. Their sound inspired future generations of alternative artists, including TV On the Radio.

Before and after leaving Mercury Records, their music was remarkeable in being tastefully loud and exploring color, space, sensuality and beat driven melodies with rhythmic and dynamic tension. Daniel’s falsetto vocals cast a contrast upon the wall of sound created by Danny’s heavy rock dreamscape guitar and Hayato’s pounding and licentious beats.
“The major labels were always trying to get us to change our sound, our look or both,” Daniel laughs. “But, we had no interest in being the next Lenny Kravitz or Tony! Toni! Toné! Unfortunately, not everyone shared our vision. We weren’t trying to be rock stars, we just want to play our music and pay our rent.”
‘The Shocking Fuzz of Your Electric Fur’ EP serves to mark the band’s re-emergence after a hiatus and will be followed by their ‘Resurrection Hymns’ LP in early 2017 via SonaBLAST! Records. For these veteran musicians and passionate noise technicians, this newest EP marks a new beginning. The new EP is available on vinyl from Manchester-basedLeonard Skully Records and on CD and digitally athttp://theveldtmusic.bandcamp.com.

 

EUROPEAN TOUR DATES
09/15 Latina, Italy – Circolo H (with Weird)
09/16 Viareggio, Italy – GOB – Ganz of Bicchio – Circolo ARCI (with Weird)
09/18 Bologna, Italy – Freakout Club (with Weird, Davide Bartolomei)
09/19 Genova, Italy – TBC
09/21 Paris, France – Supersonic (with Electric Eye)
09/22 London, UK – Shacklewell Arms (with Electric Eye, Camera)
09/23 Liverpool, UK – Liverpool International Festival of Psychedelia

09/24 Malmo, Sweden – Gatufest // Norra Grängesbergsgatan
09/25 Copenhagen, Denmark – TBC

Keep up with The Veldt 
Facebook | Twitter | Reverbnation | Bandcamp | YouTube

Keep up with Leonard Skully Records 
Website | Facebook | Twitter | Soundcloud | YouTube

 
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Posted by on September 15, 2016 in Alternative, Shoegaze

 

Stella Diana – Nitrocris – (Vipchoyo Sound Factory 2016)

Nitocris LP (cover)

Stellar Italian shoegaze outfit Stella Diana have releasec their long-awaited ‘Nitocris’ LP through Italian label Vipchoyo Sound Factory.

The album release was preceded by two singles – the first is Sulphur, a dark and sad ballad, like a numbing homeopathic remedy, that is a beautiful slow-burner, beginning quite slowly and then seemingly exploding into infinite space. The second is Dedu’n, which presents a darker sound than usual for the band.

Each song on the new album is heavily rhythmic and fuses shoegaze stylings with 80’s new wave, similar to the sound of Echo and the Bunnymen or The Chameleons, taking the listener to obscure and atmospheric territory. In Dedu’n, the voice is drowned in reverb with a low bass and psychedelic guitars… the effect is a long and exciting spatial sound wave.

Dedu’n (or Dedwen) was a Nubian god worshipped during ancient times, documented as early as 2400 BC. The earliest Egyptian writings about Dedu’n indicates that he was the god of incense, an extremely expensive luxury commodity, largely produced in Nubia.The album name itself is named for Nitocris, an ancient Egyptian queen and the last Pharaoh of the Sixth Dynasty. According to the chronicles, she was very beautiful but it’s not particularly mentioned. The album artwork defines the album’s title – an abandoned woman, who is beautiful, but sad and suffering. Ethereal and elusive, without a face.

It’s likely that “she” did not exist in native Egyptian inscriptions,” comments Stella Diana frontman Dario Torre. “This ‘not existing’ thing is very interesting and fascinating. Often you do something, you live, you breathe, you work hardly, you love. Nevertheless, for the people you don’t exist.”

The new single and forthcoming LP follows up the band’s recent Alhena EP, released in 2015 by both British and Italian labels and ranked among the ‘Best of 2015’ on numerous blogger lists.

In comparison to Alhena and the band’s previous albums, ‘Nitocris’ is somewhat more introspective. “We now have three members, which has brought about a change in our sound as we’ve become a lot more focused on the atmosphere, as well as changes in intensity within the music,” explains Dario Torre.

TRACK LIST 
1.  Sofia
2.  M.9
3.  F.U. Orionis
4.  Sulphur
5.  Aphrodia
6.  Psychedelic Furs
7.  Dedu’n
8.  Aya Ray
9.  J. Carpenter

CREDITS
Dario Torre – vocals/lyrics/guitars
Giacomo Salzano – bass/synth
Davide Fusco – drums
Recorded and mixed at Vipchoyo Sound Factory in Naples by Giacomo Salzano and Stella Diana

Keep up with Stella Diana 

 
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Posted by on August 20, 2016 in Shoegaze

 

Scatter Factory – Scatter Factory (Flecktone Recordings – 2016)

Scatter Factory album cover

Scatter Factory is the solo project of Will Foster, a multi-instrumentalist, songwriter and arranger who was a member of acclaimed art-pop band Delicatessen, as well as Top 40 hit-scoring Lodger in the 1990s. He has since written string arrangements for acts under Simon Raymonde’s guardianship, been a touring keyboardist / guitarist with Martina Topley-Bird, Brett Anderson/ Bernard Butler reunion vehicle The Tears, and Heather Nova.  Since 2008, Will has been regularly touring and recording as keyboardist with The Fratellis.

Foster neatly sums up his shift in position: “I’m still in the background – but now there’s nobody else there with me.”

Suede’s Brett Anderson, with whom he toured in support of his solo album, describes Scatter Factory’s music as “beautiful stuff”. Scatter Factory is an eloquent instrumental album that manages to be both vividly imagistic and intriguingly open-ended, playing as a set piece while ranging across pastoral tranquillity, cosmic spookiness and indeterminate dread. Composed, played, produced and mixed by Foster at his home in Oxford, this album features an array of electronica, pianos, guitars and percussion, while also making imaginative use of field recordings and treated sounds.

‘Scatter Factory’ is a non-prescriptive record that poses more questions than it provides answers and artist James Marsh, renowned for his Talk Talk album covers, has responded to this with a striking, retro-futurist graphic design for the cover artwork. It’s bold and dynamic in a way that befits someone flying solo for the first time, even if they are obscured by clouds.

As of July 22, ‘Scatter Factory’ is widely available through digital stores and also as a handsome digipak CD.

TRACKLIST

  1. Catatonic Voyage
  2. Scatter’d
  3. Out The Blocks
  4. Sheepish Hello
  5. Spartan Missile
  6. PowWow
  7. Plains Awash
  8. Not There Yet (and it’s getting dark)
  9. Mea Culpa

The album came out through Flecktone Recordings 22 July 2016 and you can order it from:

Website | Facebook | Bandcamp

 
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Posted by on July 23, 2016 in Shoegaze

 

Lazy Queen – Drift

 

lazy queenLazy Queen is a four peace shoegaze band based in Bushwick, a working- and middle-class neighborhood in the northern part of the New York City borough of Brooklyn.

Their debut EP is titled “Drift” and in its four shoegaze tracks one can trace a strong touch of garage and psychedelic elements.

Lazy Queen were started as a recording project by singer/guitarist Henrik Søberg and guitarist Reyson Morales in early 2014 and their name was inspired by the lyrics of a Pixies song.

After recording and releasing their debut EP in 2015 on their own, the addition of bassist Julian S and drummer Joel Gunderson became necessary in order to find themselves more exciting live opportunities.

“Drift” carries four great tracks with the last one, “Lesion” being my favorite as it starts as a noisy pop song to turn into a wild psychedelic garage anthem that Iggy & the Stooges would be proud to have on their tracklist back in the late 60’s…

If you don’t believe me, check their release HERE.

Catch them playing live on stage tomorrow, 11 February 2016 at The Gateway, 1272 Broadway, Brooklyn, New York.

Psychic SelvesCloak and Wolf Diamond are on the bill also…

 
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Posted by on February 10, 2016 in Shoegaze