Nine Songs You Should Have Heard This Week

Here we go, a new year and no less than nine new songs including welcome returns for Dr. Dog, Richmond Fontaine, The Dandy Warhols, Wintersleep, Steve Mason, and Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy amongst others.

  1. Dr.Dog – Bring My Baby Back
  2. Richmond Fontaine – Wake Up Ray
  3. Savages – Adore
  4. Wintersleep – Amerika
  5. The Dandy Warhols – You Are Killing Me
  6. Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy – Rich Wife Full Of Happiness
  7. Basia Bulat – Infamous
  8. Pop 1280 – Chromidia
  9. Steve Mason – Planet Sizes

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

MM’S BEST OF THE YEAR: MRS MACKEREL’S TOP TWENTY SONGS

MM Best of 2015 no guitarOur Best of the Year posts are coming to a close and for the penultimate list we hand over to the ever fragrant Mrs Mackerel.

Over to you Mrs M…

Another year banked. As ever, I look at my list and think yes, there are some that are keepers and others that maybe were just a mirage. A little like life really.

 

20 The Tulips – Winter Winds

19 Hanni El Khatib – Moonlight

18 Jamie T – Marilyn Monroe

17 Amason – Moon as a Kite

16 Haunted Hearts – Something That Feels Bad Is Something That Feels Good

15 Courtney Barnett – Pedestrian at Best

It’s a blistering guitar-led onslaught that plays out against a searing vocal style. Lyrically, it’s very much a commentary on her new found fame: Put me on a pedestal and I’ll only disappoint you. She’s learning fast, is Courtney.

 

14 Mutual Benefit – Not For Nothing

A very gentle tune with lulling melody and meaningful lyrics; throw in a bit of violin to the mix and it ticks all the boxes for me. The lyrics are sung very quietly, but if you listen hard, you can catch every word. Often the quietest people have the most to say.

 

13 The Decemberists – The Harrowed and the Haunted

Vintage Decemberists: lots of maritime imagery and a dark, sad tale of longing. Will you be there waiting/Or is your heartbeat fading?/ Fading from the time/ Still miles to go til I arrive.

 

12 Laura Marling – I Feel Your Love

You must let me go before I get old/I need to find someone who really wants to be mine/I feel your love. A change of musical style, but the sage words and usual lyrical dexterity remain a constant from the enigmatic Laura Marling, here in rock chick mode.

 

11 Harrison Storm – Sense of Storm

Storms, hurricanes, water: you sense a theme building in my top twenty this year. A really beautiful piece of acoustic folk about losing your sense of home from this talented Australian troubadour. Enough said.

 

10 Houndmouth – Sedona

A tribute to the city of Sedona, when it was known as ‘Arizona’s Little Hollywood’ and home to three decades of A-list movie making, before it all headed west (Hey little Hollywood/You’re gone but you’re not forgotten). The band’s four-part harmonies peppered throughout gives this bit of classic Americana an extra layer.

 

9 Fat White Family – Whitest Boy on the Beach

I like a heavy bass line I do, and this one sucks you in and pulls you along. I like it to steer me round the kitchen, dancing while I work. Rhythmically, Whitest Boy demands some sort of production line movement: mince pie making, possibly. Have another listen – get it now?

 

8 Du Blonde – Chips to Go

So BJH ditched the hooves, went blonde and hitched her wagon to a brand new edgier sound. Good for her, so it seems. Sold to the fish in the corner on the chorus alone, with it’s epic drum/guitar mash-up, she’s got one hell of a vocal range that wallops a whole range of emotions into orbit.

 

7 Marika Hackman – Drown

The unusual and subdued musical arrangement suits the hypnotic (almost lethargic) vocals, and floats around the brooding darkness of the lyrics. It’s easy to be swept away by the prevailing sense of emptiness and loss; guaranteed to send me into sad reflective mode, even if I’m high on sugar and caffeine.

 

6 Kurt Vile – Pretty Pimpin

So, it takes Kurt a little while to recognise himself as the “man in the mee-rah”. Wakey, wakey son. But after a minor identity crisis and a bit of a teeth mix-up, everything’s pretty pimpin. Finger-picking guitar, foot tapping rhythm and a rasping vocal drawl made this a very well-loved tune amongst Team Mackerel.

 

5 Ezra Furman – Haunted Head

A one-off original, Mr Furman. And if the youngest Sprat had written a top ten, Ezra would be there, one to ten. Here we meander downtown, with lyrics that evoke the mania of being bipolar, under the influence of Velvet Underground and a vocal nod to Bowie. Haunted head? Frankly, I know how he feels.

 

4 Calexico – Follow the River

Calexico has a special place in my heart, and the familiarity of a beloved old friend, albeit one who lives on the US/Mexico border. We sync well, Calexico and myself: Follow the River is a sad, wistful song that offers hope, despite itself. I’ll take that, thanks lads.

 

3 Tracey Thorn – Goodbye Joe

I just love this song; I go to bed listening and wake up humming this tune. Do I care that it was originally released in 1982, or that it’s a COVER? Zut allors, MM had a bit of a fishy fit. He is now lying on his side. I am, of course, a stroppy fish wife. And always right. Ahem.

 

2 Lord Huron – Hurricane (Johnnie’s Theme)

Oh little darling/don’t you look charming/here in the eye of a hurricane – well you know, with a good hat, soft lighting and the right amount of blusher, anything is possible. Upbeat, up-tempo, lots of gee-tar: my top twenty sort of needed this – and the album is an overlooked gem of 2015.

 

1 The Quiet Hollers – Côte d’Azur

And here with me lies my song for 2015, by a very long country mile: the unbearably poignant and dark tale of Côte d’Azur as my own private metaphor for everything from life and death, loss and yearning – and all that lies in between. About those memory markers that resurface in the depths of your dreams and the half way stage when the sun warms your face, and what’s real and what’s not – the journey and the destination – merges into one; always searching. This song breaks my heart at every single listen, so I turn up the white noise.

 

Best gig of 2015:

The Decemberists, O2 Academy, Bristol

En famille. Colin Meloy is a magnificent raconteur, in addition to his musical prowess and distinctive vocal style. I’d waited a long time to see the Decemberists and they did not disappoint, closing the set with a magnificent rendition of The Mariner’s Revenge Song. Again, please.

 

School Anthem:

The Decemberists – A Beginning Song

Played out the final primary school assembly for smallest Sprat. Anthemic and emotional, this builds to epic finale that despite the best efforts of the pantomime horses, played out a celebration of the joy, achievements and idiosyncrasies that all our bright lights gave to us.

 

New to me in 2015: Dr Dog – It

I loved this at first listen, meandering through a blistering heatwave in rural Spain. Such well observed lyrics, for really, it truly is all in how you look at it: It’s real and it’s a lie/It’s the answer and the question when you wonder why. Yeah; ain’t that so.

 

You can see our full countdown of our favourite 100 Tracks of the year here (100-76), (75-51), (50-26), (25-1) and favourite 30 Albums here (30-16), (15-1).

New Videos: Hurray For The Riff Raff || Fat White Family || Cheatahs || Dr. Dog || Mini Mansions

Taking a break from the countdown of our favourite 100 songs of the year to bring you five new excellent videos from some MM faves – Hurray For The Riff Raff (who will be featuring in the top 100 shortly), Fat White Family, Cheatahs, Mini Mansions and an excellent live video from Dr. Dog.

Enjoy.

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Videos of the Day: Dr. Dog || Toy || PINS || Black Lips

Videos of the Day

A cracking set of new videos for you to enjoy today from four long-standing MM favourites: Dr. Dog, Toy, PINS, and Black Lips.

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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MUoAt5n0_o0

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It’s The Christmas Posts – No. 9: Dr. Dog

It's The Christmas Posts - No. 9: Dr. Dog

Today, Dr. Dog will release a collection of four delightfully weird and heartfelt original Christmas songs. The EP is entitled Oh My Christmas Tree and was initially intended as a gift to the band’s family and friends. Fortunately for the rest of us, the group has decided to make the songs public.

100% of artist proceeds from this digital only benefit EP will be donated to Feeding America, the nationwide network of food banks that feeds more than 37 million people, including nearly 14 million children, and leads the nation in the fight against hunger.

Order the EP here.

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Videos of the Day: Dr. Dog || Lorelle Meets The Obsolete || Basia Bulat || Diarrhea Planet || TV Ghost

Videos of the Day

Five top notch videos today come from Dr. Dog and their reappropriated footage to accompany the excellent Broken Heart, and similarly from Lorelle Meets The Obsolete we have a suitably antiquated experimental video for the superb psych-rock of What’s Holding You?.

From Basia Bulat, a stunning live performance of It Can’t Be You, and by contrast from Diarrhea Planet, a spring breakers inspired film for Separations from much heralded new album I’m Rich Beyond Your Wildest Dreams. Lastly we have TV Ghost’s tripped out video for their taut, grinding new single Siren.

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First Taste Of The Truth From New Dr. Dog Album

Philadelphia’s Dr. Dog will release their new album entitled B-Room on October 1st via Anti- Records (pre-order here).

The first taste is the gorgeously soulful and melancholic album opener The Truth – watch and listen below.

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Lots Of Free Samplers

free

As well as Insound’s latest free Vinyl News Mixtape, Noisetrade have put up four free brilliant label samplers from Anti Records, ATO, Frenchkiss and Nettwerk Music.

The Insound sampler includes within its 10 tracks, offerings from FIDLAR, Memory Tapes, Teen Mom, The Analog Girl, and The Joy Formidable.

The eight track Anti Records sampler features, amongst others, Calexico, Jason Lytle, The Coup and Sean Rowe.

The ATO sampler has tracks from many MM faves including Patterson Hood, Old Crow Medicine Show, Alabama Shakes, Alberta Cross and plenty more.

Frenchkiss are offering up 24 free tracks including Fidlar, The Guards, Fuck Buttons, Slow Animal, Tall Firs and plenty more.

Nettwerk Music’s offering includes Great Lake Swimmers, Family Of The Year, Young Liars, Current Swell and nine more.

Click here to get the Insound mix, but hurry it is only up for a limited time. Click here for the Anti Records sampler. Click here for the ATO sampler. Click here for the Frenchkiss sampler and click here for the Nettwerk music sampler.

Alternatively dip your toe in the water with a sample of our favourites from each one.

Download Beaters – Fishage mp3 (from Insound Vinyl Mixtape – December 13, 2012)

Download Dr. Dog – These Days mp3 (from Anti-Winter EP)

Download Two Gallants – My Love Won’t Wait mp3 (from ATO Records Fall Sampler 2012)

Download Other Lives – Take Us Alive mp3 (from ATO Records Fall Sampler 2012)

Download Two Wounded Birds – If Only We Remain mp3 (from Frenchkiss Label Group Compilation)

Download Chelsea Wolfe – Tracks (Tall Bodies) mp3 (from Frenchkiss Label Group Compilation)

Download Admiral Fallow – Brother mp3 (from Nettwerk Fall Music Sampler 2012)

Videos of the Day: Rachel Brooke || Ivan & Alyosha || J.D. Hobson || Dr. Dog

Video of the Day

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Mad Mackerel’s Best of the Month: October 2012

Mad Mackerel's Best of October 2012.

Our monthy round up of the best new tunes we’ve posted and a few brand new ones too. More than 30 tunes to set you up for the weekend. Enjoy.

Wooden Wand – Southern Colorado Song
Another brilliant example of our favourite, prolific troubadour’s storytelling prowess.

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Download The Growl – With The Sharp End Of A Trowel mp3 (from Cleaver Lever EP)
Soaked in the authentic primal blues of the swamps with a twang of rockabilly, a haze of psychedelia and, at its heart, the pulsating, bloody roar of rock’n’roll.

The Shamefaced Sparrows – Ride That Seastorm
Like the Velvets fronted by Dick Dale, or the Beach Boys cage fighting with the Kinks these are crackling with surf-pop vintage – think cruising rain-slicked neon streets in 50s LA!

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Download Angel Snow – Lie Awake mp3 (from Angel Snow)
Haunting, chilling vocals paired with melancholy lyrics create a gorgeous scenery for a listener’s travels.

Matthew Friedberger – Expectant Fathers – In for a Surprise VII. As if in the Car with the Kids (from Matricidal Sons Of Bitches)
Inspired by the films of Poverty Row and his current city of residence, Paris – it makes for a potent combination.

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Download Jenee Halstead – Rodeo Of Sadness mp3 (from Raised By Wolves)
Another fine example of her spooky, sparse approach that comes across as sounding like a slightly malevolent hybrid of Dolly Parton and PJ Harvey.

Download Skipping Girl Vinegar – You Can mp3 (from Keep Calm, Carry The Monkey)
More heartwarming hobo-pop, full of lyrical twists and sonic layers.

Download Kings Of Lowertown – Down Tobacco Road mp3 (from Kings of Lowertown EP)
Excellent primal blues chug.

Download King Of Spain – Green Eyes mp3 (from All I Did Was Tell Was Tell Them The Truth And They Thought It Was Hell)
Spacious indie rock with jaunty pop hooks.

Bromheads – Holding The Gun
Fizzes over with the energy of a can of Irn-Bru exploding full in your face. It is sharp and pithy, and fast and furious, and machetes its way into your brain like an earworm with a mouthful of razors.

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Wintersleep – Martyr
Another prime example of their shimmering, pulsating indie rock.

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MMOSS – Another Dream
Jangly organs, flutes and driving drums, unexpected arrangements, classic recording sounds and psychy harmonies.

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Algernon Doll – Spiral Sounds
Lavish, intense and splendid, but underpinned with a creeping sense of anxiety and discontent.

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Download Jason Lytle – Somewhere There’s A Someone mp3 (from Dept. Of Disappearance)
A track of wonderfully weary heartbreak and ennui from erstwhile Grandaddy frontman’s new album

Rural Ghosts – Eyes (from Eyes Single)
A little rawer, a little more powerful, but this is still Americana that overflows with haunting beauty.

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Woollen Kits – Susannah (from Four Girls)
sweet, fuzzed-up pysch-garage.

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Download Ending People – Beat Of My Heart mp3 (from Fill Your Lungs)
Catchy, hypnotic indie rock showcases new wave inspired sinewy guitar lines.

Hailer – Spooky Clams (from Another Way)
Calls to mind The Fall in its relentless rhythm, while the reverb swirls and drifts around the (frankly clearer) vocals.

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Download Ty Segall – Femme Fatale mp3 (from The Velvet Underground & Nico by Castle Face and Friends)
Maniacal take on Velvet Underground classic.

Download The Luyas – Your Name’s Mostly Water mp3 (from Animator)
Hypnotically brilliant track from latest album.

Download Fidlar featuring Kate Nash – AWWWKWAARRRDDD mp3 (from Fidlar)
Bizarre combo works a treat. Punk rock!

Download Outer Minds – Those Machines mp3 (from Behind The Mirror)
One hundred and fifty seconds of belligerence escaping with venomous joy from your speakers.

Download Deathbarrel – Merciless Winds mp3 (from Merciless Winds)
The sound of wrenches and motor oil, of Saturday night beers and truckstops, of longing and loss, of late evenings and aching muscles, of endless roads and shore leave, of the dreams of freedom that all and any working man feels deep in his soul.

Download Dr. Dog – Black Or Red mp3 (from Shame, Shame Deluxe Edition)
Scrappy yet hook-packed rock emboldened by a bare-bones aesthetic.

Download Lonesome Moses – Fisting With A Shark mp3 (from Lonesome Moses EP)
Outlaw country that celebrates unassuming heroes and heroines trying to navigate a world of booze, venereal disease, and Octoloans…

Download Dead Stars – Fractured mp3 (from Fractured) Removed at artist’s request.
Races along in a tumble of reverb, gruff vocals and a nagging guitar line that also puts us in mind of Silversun Pickups Lazy Eye.

Juiceboxxx – Expressway To The Darkness
American heart of darkness anthem, like Suicide reinvented for the 21st century.

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Download Dolfish – There Must Be Something Wrong With These Shoes mp3 (from I’d Rather Disappear Than Stay The Same)
More warped promise from the skewed and idiosyncratic world of offbeat folk troubadour.

And to finish off we have a taste of Teen Mom’s effervescent fuzzed up pop from forthcoming EP Mean Tom (pre-order here), another stunning cover from Marissa Nadler – this time Daniel Johnston’s Devil Town and a new non-album track from psych-blues rockers The Buffalo Killers, Baptized is a down-and-dirty rocker that somehow melds heavy psych with gospel! Lastly we have the welcome return of Sleeping Bag’s bedroom indie-pop, addictively deadpan if you will, Walk Home comes from new limited edition EP Women Of Your Life (pre-order here).

Download Teen Mom – I Wanna Go Out mp3 (from Mean Tom EP)

Download Sleeping Bag – Walk Home mp3 (from Women Of Your Life)

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