Posts Tagged ‘Quiet Hollers’

More From Quiet Hollers

Posted: June 8, 2017 in Americana, Indie, Music, Rock
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Following on from Medicine, the first track from Quiet Hollers’ forthcoming new album Amen Breaks, we now have the reflective St. Valentine’s Boys for your undoubted listening pleasure.

Watch the video below which features lead singer Shadwick Wilde breaking into some mean calisthenics and DIY dance moves, lending to the whimsical nature of the video. He describes the narrator in the song, a type of enforcer working for a mob-boss version of Saint Valentine, the patron saint of love. He goes around breaking hearts, a euphemism he likes to use, doing someone else’s dirty work, when he wishes he could just lay in bed in the morning and listen to the birds. He also sees the end coming, but he doesn’t want to spoil it for anyone.

 

 

 

Quiet Hollers have announced a new album Amen Breaks, a record that draws parallels with the cultural crossovers and the anxieties of the 1970s, a decade marred by division, political corruption, and terrorism.

Long standing MM faves (they delivered our second favourite tune of 2015), the band have expanded their shape-shifting palate to include vintage drum machines and samples. On Amen Breaks, Quiet Hollers raise questions of spirituality, sexuality, and mental illness in tones that range from the cinematic to the psychedelic.

The first single from it is Medicine, a compelling personal story from frontman Shadwick Wilde about crippling anxiety, depression, existential malaise, and society’s attitudes toward medication and addiction.

Have a listen. The album is out on the 7th July.

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The first of our four individual listings comes from The Italian Job – she of the detailed spreadsheets and punk rock outlook. Listen on Spotify here.

20. Underworld – I Exhale

 

19. The Wave Pictures – Pool Hall

 

18. Arborist – I Heard Him Leaving

 

17. Kyle Craft – Before The Wall

 

16. Terry Malts – Used To Be

 

15. Quiet Hollers – Broken Guitar

 

14. Parquet Courts – Dust

 

13. Black Mountain – Florian Saucer Attack

 

12. Old Sea Brigade – Sleep In The Park

 

11. Mind Spiders –  Cold

 

10. Jamie T – Tinfoil Boy
Let’s start with this song that, quite frankly (and weirdly) I am still not quite sure what to make of. It is an unusual Jamie T’s song, to say the list, but I have to be true to my admit that I just find it absolutely brilliant and totally catching. So, in all its glorious eccentricity, there it is, happily sitting at no.10.

 

9. The Julie Ruin – I Decide
This song nearly didn’t make it to my top ten because, you know, fierce competition and all that.. but I was just kidding myself! These girls managed to combine whimsical and nonsensical lyrics sung with a childish, cheeky voice with earth-shattering bass guitars mixed with a slightly dark but brilliant beat. It’s catchy, it works, I love it!

 

8. Flat Worms – Red Hot Sand
This track’s got it all. The noise, the energy, the sand, the heat, the sweat, the City of Angels.. you can feel it all! Without a doubt the best intro of my entire top 20, a screechy prelude to bold and distorted guitars reminiscent of the soundtrack to a particularly violent ’70 television crime drama. Hot!

 

7. James Arthur’s Manhunt – Kill Zone
A last minute entry, this song delivers the perfect balance between anger and.. more anger; my cup of tea, it hit me instantly! The ‘wicked’ brief guitar solo about two minutes into the song is what definitely sealed the deal for me! A powerful track.

 

6. The Bones of J.R. Jones – Hammers and Nails
It could not get more ‘folk’ than this, totally captivating! Hammers and Nails tells of ancient tales from the deep south, ritualistic dance routines around bonfires (well, in my head at least) and unnerving dark secrets. With its infectious beats it has firmly remained one of my favourite songs of this year since the first time I’ve listened to it.

 

5. Communist Daughter – Balboa Bridge
This is another last minute entry and holds a special place in my heart -and in my top 10. I read there is a story behind this song, a story of difficult times and a mental health struggle that gives it a deep meaning that goes beyond the beautiful, sweet and romantic tone. The lead singers’ voices are stunning and heart warming, this is a true gem of a song.

 

4. Mind Spiders – Running
Brilliantly played, from the first sharp guitar note this song’s pace is relentless and intense, borderline exhausting. It perfectly conveys the message in the title, setting off my little brain on a mild state of underlying-anxiety. It starts on a high that unrelentingly continues throughout. Cannot get enough of it.

 

3. Great American Canyon Band – Undertow
What a beautiful, beautiful song. A deep, languid ballad that gets better and better with every upcoming note, until the lead guitar comes in and suddenly takes it to yet another level. I could get lost in this song, I could praise it ‘at infinitum’. It’s an outstanding piece of music.

 

2. TRAAMS – A House on Fire
Seeing TRAAMS live recently was a revelation in itself, their performance was nothing short of magnificent! Powerful, aggressive, implacable, with unbelievably impressive guitars. Their latest single A House on Fire is all this and even more, if any more is possible! An 8-minute long, epic, mind-blogging track that totally blew me away. One thing is clear, TRAAMS do not mess about.

 

1. Ashley Shadow – Tired
Every now and then a song comes along that, like a mirror, seems to have the power to reflect a bit of your life back at you, that makes you think and makes you ‘feel’, with a message comforting and melancholic at the same time. This is what this stunning, timeless piece does for me. Ashley Shadow’s voice is angelic, warm and reassuring; the song is classy, beautiful, unsophisticated. My indisputable choice for the top spot of the year. Totally deserves it!

 

Tomorrow we have Chris T Popper’s favourite twenty songs of the year. Click through to check out our favourite 100 tracks of 2016 (100-76, 75-51, 50-26, 25-1) and our album choices here.

mms-best-of-2016-header

Inside the top fifty of our favourite songs of the year now. Check numbers 50 – 26 and come back tomorrow for the final countdown…

50 BAIT – I’m Still Here

 

49 Big Thief – Paul

 

48 Kyle Craft – Before The Wall

 

47 Staches – Total Commitment

 

46 Arborist – I Heard Him Leaving

 

45 Hooded Fang – Dead Battery

 

44 Yowl – The Imminent Return

 

43 Quiet Hollers – Broken Guitar

 

42 Ultimate Painting – Bills

 

41 Mind Spiders – Cold

 

40 Flat Worms – Petulance

 

39 Lucy Dacus – I Don’t Wanna Be Funny Anymore

 

38 Old Sea Brigade – Sleep In The Park

 

37 Nick Cave – Skeleton Tree

 

36 Jacuzzi Boys – Lucky Blade

 

35 Fat White Family – Breaking Into Aldi

 

34 The Cave Singers – That’s Why

 

33 Neighbors – Angel O

 

32 The Lumineers – Gale Song

 

31 The Julie Ruin – I Decide

 

30 The Bones Of J.R. Jones – Hammers And Nails

 

29 PJ Harvey – Guilty

 

28 Joseph Coward – Peanut Girl

 

27 Magic Potion – Milk

 

26 Agnes Obel – Its Happening Again

 

Check the full list so far: 100-76, 75-51.

Quiet Hollers

With their mix of yearning alt-country and literary indie rock, Quiet Hollers featured large in our best of 2015 lists, and now we are excited to learn they have announced a brand new single, the gorgeous Broken Guitar. It is the first new song they’ve shared since their brilliant eponymous debut album that came out in October.

Listen below, it is a hazy, harmony-filled heartbreaker and reminds us exactly why we fell in love with them in the first place.

“She slipped from my hands and fell to the floor
couldn’t stand for me to touch her anymore
my baby broke her back trying to get away
the broken record tried to play”

 

Having proved themselves to be one of our bands of the year in our Best Of lists, it seems entirely appropriate that today’s Festive Fayre offering comes from Quiet Hollers.

They have shared their cover of Nightmare River Band’s Christmas tune, First Christmas. All proceeds from the sale and publishing of the song (so please do buy it) will go to St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital until Three Kings day (January 6th).

 

And the original..

 

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).

MM Best of 2015 no guitarOur third personal Top Ten comes from ever-present contributor Chris T Popper…

Another set of mighty fine tunes…

 

20 Telegraph Canyon – Why Let It Go

19 Songhoy Blues – Soubour

18 Assed Out – Bueno

17 Houndmouth – Sedona

16 Kurt Vile – Pretty Pimpin

15 Abandoned Delta – I Never Lived In New Orleans

14 Tallest Man On Earth – Sagres

13 Diet Cig – Harvard

12 Protomatyr – Dope Cloud

11 This Is The Kit – Silver John

10 Hanni El Khatib – Moonlight

I first heard this on the Radio 6Music mid morning show back when winters were cold; thankfully songs like this make up for the witless musings of the host(s). Channeling a sound not wholly unlike Timber Timbre and the mighty yet criminally undervalued Howling Owls it’s a slinky little number dripping in reverb and with a splendid hook. Hit the spot with me in January and I never got bored of it. Only fair then that Moonlight makes the top ten, for it’s commendable staying power throughout eleven long months if nothing else.

 

9 Karen Meat & The Players – Pizza & Beer

A great riff opens this tune all slackers will connect with (that’ll be me then). How can you argue with the lyrics ‘I’ll think about exercise, and I’ll close my eyes for only for a minute or two. You want me to be the girl of your dreams but I’d rather barf all the shit I snarfed down earlier’. Great, Karen Meat sounds like my perfect drinking partner (and I’ve had a few). Add some groovy distorted vocals and the whole thing is done and dusted in under 2 minutes. I spent over six months unemployed this year and this was my soundtrack to those halcyon days.

 

8 Spray Paint – Signal Master

First of two entries in my top 10 for Spray Paint who have been my discovery of the year. Hailing from Austin, Texas the three piece was born from the remnants of When Dinosaurs Ruled The World (apparently only three members turned up for rehearsal one day and started playing and laying down tracks). Loosely (at best!) tuned guitars create synchronised chaos that dovetails with my DNA very nicely thank you. The opening line is delivered with a fabulously disinterested drawl – ‘Drinking more, eating less’ – a statement I have no trouble understanding.

 

7 Protomartyr – Why Does It Shake?

Protomartyr have also been a revelation this year with at least three of their songs pushing for a top ten spot from their excellent 2015 release The Agent Intellect. Touring the USA with their mates Spray Paint early next year coincides with my birthday. If anyone wants to buy me a plane ticket to Miami for the 20th February… Failing that I’ll wait until April for Protomartyr’s London 100 Club gig, minus Spray Paint unfortunately.

 

6 TRAAMS – Succulent Thunder Anthems

I’m a big fan of TRAAMS, and was lucky enough to tune in to their set on Mark Riley’s excellent radio show. They played this tune, a rollicking guitar blast, with an occasional break for some rather foreboding lyrics – ‘You know there’s ice on the road, please don’t slip and break your neck’. This is the band I need to see live in 2016 having missed them at last year’s Great Escape and (inexplicably) throughout 2015. Not a mistake I’ll make again.

 

5 Free Weed – Later

Scarily a social commentary on my own 2015… I’m now slightly panicked by Later. A wonderful beat that’s put it’s feet up, stuck the kettle on while sat on your couch sparking up a big fat one and watching a David Attenborough nature documentary on Ultra HD. Life’s good, worry ‘bout it later…

 

4 Quiet Hollers – Cote D’Azur

On the surface this is a melodic gaze towards the French Riviera. However, there’s an undertow of nasty menace I wasn’t initially aware of (excellent!). I think the protagonist may be a hit man or similar when I heard the lyrics ‘And from the trunk I could hear his voice, begging for his life like I had a choice, he said he had a wife and two little boys, and so I turned up the white noise’. Beautiful, haunting and the contrast leaves me feeling slightly discombobulated.

 

3 Sleaford Mods – Tarantula Deadly Cargo

My favourite song from the Sleaford’s 2015 album Key Markets and there was plenty of competition as it’s stuffed with great tunes. This has a slightly more laid back feel than usual with an inspired loop from Andrew Fearn and Williamson’s lyrics detailing the weary horrors of touring. The title refers to a 1977 TV movie that Williamson describes as “an areoplane full of hairy spiders with bad tempers who start killing the mindlessly frightened passengers”. Best check out Netflix for that then.

 

2 Spray Paint – Day Of The Rope

Heavy bass, discordant lead guitar crashing about the place like a demented baboon on acid and those metronomic drums just keep pounding. Jello Biafra and Gibby Haynes could have cooked this up in a deranged music lab somewhere. Can I make it any clearer how good this song is? Any other year this would have nailed the number 1 spot, it’s provocative, entertaining and utterly insane. I love Spray Paint. They truly are my new favourite band.

 

1 Girl Band – Pears for Lunch

My number one was bound to be a relentless attack on the nervous system so who else but perennial C Popper fave Girl Band to step up. With vocals like Jake Burns after a cold Lemsip, Dara Kiely keeps an impressive howl going throughout. The momentum builds and builds dragging you along for an increasingly brutal and uncomfortable ride, the fabulous Kiely vocals intertwining with the cacophony of sound to provide a full on assault to the musical senses. Simply put, I get goose bumps every time I hear it and what more can you ask for? It’s not just my favourite song of this year, but one that will be precious to me way beyond 2015.

 

And a couple of other awards…

Best Cover: Iron & Wine – Albuquerque

 

Best Song Heard For The First Time, But Not This Year: Adam Torres – Breakneck Jane’s 15 Minute Escape

 

Best Live Act: Fat White Family

Best Album: Sleaford Mods – Key Markets

 

You can see our 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).

MM BEST OF 2015

Here we go then, our final countdown of our favourite tracks of 2015, with no fewer than three artists managing two entries in the top 25 this year! And don’t forget you can see the other 75 choices here (100-75), here (75-51) and here (50-26).

Enjoy.

25 Ghostpoet – Off Peak Dreams

 

24 Tracy Thorn – Goodbye Joe (2015 re-issue)

 

23 Calexico – Follow The River

 

22 Decemberists – Make You Better

 

21 Mikal Cronin – iv) Ready

 

20 Sleaford Mods – Tarantula Deadly Cargo

 

19 Ezra Furman – Haunted Head

 

18 Slaves – Feed The Manta Ray

 

17 Man Of Moon – The Road

 

16 Dan Mangan + Blacksmith – Mouthpiece

 

15 Free Weed – Later

 

14 Spray Paint – Day Of The Rope

 

13 Lord Huron – Hurricane (Johnnie’s Theme)

 

12 Low – What Part Of Me

 

11 Courtney Barnett – Pedestrian At Best

 

10 Protomartyr – Pontiac 87

 

9 Spray Paint – Signal Master

 

8 This Is The Kit – Silver John

 

7 Decemberists – Carolina Low

 

6 Traams – Succulent Thunder Anthem

 

5 Girl Band – Pears For Lunch

 

4 Houndmouth – Sedona

 

3 Protomartyr – Why Does It Shake

 

2 Quiet Hollers – Cote D’Azur

 

1 Kurt Vile – Pretty Pimpin

 

MM BEST OF 2015

Here are our favourite albums of 2015.

15 Julien Baker – Sprained Ankle

Julien Baker

 

14 Joe Ely – Panhandle Rambler

joe ely

 

13 Low – Ones And Sixes

LOW_OnesSixes_cover

 

12 James McMurtry – Complicated Game

james mcmurtry

 

11 Titus Andronicus – The Most Lamentable Tragedy

titus andronicus

 

10 Quiet Hollers – Quiet Hollers

quiet hollers

 

9 Girl Band – Holding Hands With Jamie

girl band

 

8 Ezra Furman – Perpetual Motion

ezra furman

 

7 The Decemberists – What A Terrible World, What A Beautiful World

decemberists

 

6 Kurt Vile – B’lieve I’m Goin Down…

kurt vile

 

5 Slaves – Are You Satisfied

slaves

 

4 Jeffrey Lewis & Los Bolts – Manhattan

Jeffrey Lewis

 

3 Houndmouth – Little Neon Limelight

houndmouth

 

2 Courtney Barnett – Sometimes I Sit And Think And Sometimes I Just Sit

courtney barnett

 

1 Protomartyr – The Agent Intellect

protomartyr

 

Check the list from 30-16 here, and our tracks of the year so far here and here.