Posts Tagged ‘Rural Alberta Advantage’

Round Up

The new releases juggernaut has well and truly got into gear for 2017 with a whole host of new tracks from some longstanding MM faves seeing the light of day this week.

So, rather than post them all one-by-one, we’ve rounded them up for you into one neat package.

Wonderful New York duo Diet Cig have announced the forthcoming release of their hugely anticipated debut album entitled Swear I’m Good At This. The album will be released on 7th April via Frenchkiss Records. Today the band have shared the first single off the album – the highly infectious Tummy Ache.


Toronto alt-rock quartet The Wooden Sky will also release their new album Swimming in Strange Waters on 7th April via Nevado Music. Drawing its title from a line in Frank Herbert’s 1965 sci-fi novel, DuneSurvival is the ability to swim in strange water – the record finds frontman and multi-instrumentalist Gavin Gardiner struggling to come to terms with the trauma and unknowns haunting both his personal life and the world at large. Have a listen to the title track.


Churning out hauntingly bittersweet lo-fi, Manchester girlfriend/boyfriend duo Luxury Death are back with their new single Glue, alongside the announcement of their debut EP of the same name.


Laura Marling has shared a second track, Wild Fire, from her upcoming new album Semper Femina.


Laura Marling also contributes backing vocals to Karen Elson’s new track Distant Shore, which comes from the English-born, Nashville-based singer-songwriter’s sophomore album Double Roses – also out on 7th April (mark the date!) via H.O.T Records Ltd.


Long-running Toronto indie-folk trio Rural Alberta Advantage have shared Beacon Hill, it comes ahead of a planned new album for later in the year.


Experimental psych-rock institution Grails have just shared a second track Pelham, ahead of their first studio album in six years, Chalice Hymnal. The track is a visceral collusion of acid-psych, 20th century Western film scores, and jazz-infused prog.


Ignorecam is Pissed Jeans crushing new offering from Why Love Now, their forthcoming fifth album available 24th February on Sub Pop.


And finally, noisy post-punk duo Japandroids have given us No Known Drink Or Drug, a new track from their long awaited third album, Near To The Wild Heart Of Life.





1. Jason Isbell & Amanda Shires – Born In The USA
2. DZ Deathrays – Less Out Of Sync
3. Bat For Lashes – Skin Song
4. The Rural Alberta Advantage – Terrified
5. Speedy Ortiz – Bigger Party







Free Label Samplers From Saddle Creek, Jeffery Drag & Bridgetown.

Here are three excellent and completely free label samplers that are well worth getting your grubby mitts on.

The first comes from the wonderful Saddle Creek label and their thirteen track Summer Sampler 2012 includes offerings from The Mynabirds, Cursive, Tim Kasher, Bright Eyes and Maria Taylor.

The second is from Jeffery Drag Records and is a collection of ten tracks from some top-notch garage rock’n’rollers, punks and assorted ne’er-do-wells such as Bad ChildThe Hussy, Pujol, Useless Eaters, Natural Child and The Electric Dollhouse Groovebuggy amongst others.

Last, but by no means least comes a tasty sampler from the Bridgetown label. It is sixteen tracks taken from their nine summer releases and includes the likes of Secret Colors, Ultra Dome, Kevin Greenspon + Nicole Kidman and Former Selves. It is of the more experimental persuasion, but there is plenty to immerse yourself in and enjoy, particularly the darkly fragile folk of John Thill.

Some samples to whet the appetite below. Alternatively, just go and get the Saddle Creek Summer Sampler 2012 from for free here, get the Jeffrey Drag sampler from their Bandcamp page here, and download the full Bridgetown sampler from here.

Download The Rural Alberta Advantage – North Star mp3 (from Saddle Creek Summer Sampler 2012)

Download Big Harp – Everybody Pays mp3 (from Saddle Creek Summer Sampler 2012)

Download – John Thill – Informers mp3 (from Bridgetown Summer Sampler)

Download Kevin Greenspon + Nicole Kidman – Southpaw mp3 (from Bridgetown Summer Sampler)



Mad Mackerel's Best of 2011.Scottish Kate is a great friend of this blog and has often offered her (sometimes pithy) opinions on the world of music – and very good taste she has too.

She also runs the always excellent (sometimes pithy), and often provocative blog A Burdz Eye View for all things Scottish (of course), political and musical. Here are her aural selections for 2011.

The Burd’s Best Songs of 2011

Well it doesn’t get any easier.  Though given that all my old schticks are in here aplenty – drums, noise, shoegaze, jingly jangly guitars, quirkiness, blues and reverb – it really should be a doddle.  This girl is forever stuck in her groove and that’s just the way I like it.

10. Cashier No9  – When Jackie Shone

Gosh, why do I like this?  It’s just got that whole throbbing bass line thing I like.  Layers of sound.  Odd vocals.  And drums.  Of course. Like it? Love it.  The louder the better.


9. Other Lives – For 12

Nearly my choon of the year.  Deceptively simple, soaring, swooping and positively swoonsome.

Download Other Lives – For 12 mp3 (from Tamer Animals)

8. Josh Schroeder and Meredith Adelaide – Where Are You

It could so easily have been So it Goes, for both choons have been on a near constant loop at various times this year.  But seeing as I have to choose – and I must, I cannot have the ignominy of a twelve instead of a ten two years in a row – then this one wins out.  Not for nothing my Twitter bio suggests I’m not nearly as scary as I pretend to be.


7. Secret Colours – Faust

A late contender but a worthy one.  This choon is the musical equivalent of a three course meal and therefore ticks all my bluesy-rock boxes.  So long as you like your meat and potatoes with no veg.

Download Secret Colours – Faust mp3 (from EP3)

6. The Rural Alberta Advantage – Barnes’ Yard

See?  Stomping, strummy, just a little shoogly and I’m sold.


5. We were promised Jetpacks – Medicine

Ye cannae beat a wee jangly Scottish band, especially one that throws everything but the kitchen sink into their music.  It should be a mess but it so isn’t.  After a difficult year out, with this track they exploded back onto the music scene and it was like they’d never been away.


4. Slow Club – Beginners

A knickerbocker glory offering of shoegaze.  With a big dollop of retro on the side and some reverb sprinklings up top for good measure.  Dreamy.

Download Slow Club – Beginners mp3 (from Paradise)

3. Team Genius – Home

Boy Wonder’s favourite moshing/air guitar choon of the year.  We have pogo-ed round the sitting room to this.  Oh yes.  For those who don’t know, he’s the eight year old, supposedly I’m the responsible adult.


2. William Elliott Whitmore – Field Song

The man with the voice that sends shivers down my spine is at the peak of his powers.  Occasionally I have to lie in a darkened room to listen to this album – all the better to wallow y’see.  The title track is truly a thing of beauty.


1. The Low Anthem – Matter of Time

They made it into 2009 and 2010’s list and here they are again.  The grandmasters of less is more, of making a symphony out of a three minute track.


Favourite cover of the year

Barry-Sean and I share some bizarre commonalities.  There are Killie fans in his family too, and it would appear, the influence of Buddy Holly on our musical heritage. The standout cover version for me this year? Patti Smith doing Words of Love and making it all her own.


Favourite discoveries of the year

Actually, this was a rediscovery.  In reprising the career of the late, great Jackie Leven, I found myself falling in love with Doll by Doll all over again.  Gypsy Blood is a great album, and only recently recognised as a modern rock masterpiece.  Aye but it’s the punkish tendencies that make it so.

Guilty pleasure

Diddy – Dirty Money Coming Home

Yes really.  The year I discovered what makes the young folk tick.  This far though and no further.

Close but no Cigar

O’Death – Bugs

This is a beautifully meaningful song on so many levels.  Especially when you know the back story.

Download O’Death – Bugs mp3 (from Outside)

FOUND – Anti Climb Paint

Just about my favourite track off one of my favourite albums of the year.

The Barettas – Touche

This is the kind of band I always wanted to be in.  Still do.

Download The Barettas – Touche mp3 (from Touche 7″)

Peggy Sue – Dumbo

Two albums in two years, both of them corkers.  Quirky and winsome.

A Classic Education – Forever Boy

It’s the drums innit?

Download A Classic Education – Forever Boy mp3 (from Call It Blazing)

Coke Weed – Not My Old Man

Or maybe it’s just the all-round oddness…

Download Coke Weed – Not My Old Man mp3 (from Volume 1)

The Kills – Future Starts Slow

Did I mention I like a bit of down and dirty?  And no one does like it Jamie and Alison. Should have married her, mate.

Lykke Li – Sadness is a Blessing

More shoegaze, quirkiness and downright pop genius.  Oh, and the best video of the year.

Butcher Boy – Helping Hands

The line that sold it to me was “on yellow grass and dirty pebble dash”.  Seemingly whimsical, masking a dark heart.

The Shivers – Kisses

There’s an acoustic and a blues version of this song.  Sometimes I play them one after the other.

Download The Shivers – Kisses mp3 (from Rob Da Bank Session)

Another bonanza month. Another round up of the very best tracks we posted in March. Another selection of new tunes to get your teeth into too.

So without further ado…

Download White Denim – Drug mp3 (from D)

First taste of rockers new album. Bodes well. Very well.

Download The Everymen – Ballad Of Sarin mp3 (from Hello, Nice Evening. We Are The Everymen)

Cocksure but not arrogant, intense without being overwhelming, and high on the sleaze factor as the shredded vocals of Sarin McHugh gleefully sit astride pounding drums and thunderous guitars.

Download Strand Of Oaks – Wolves mp3 (Phosphorescent Cover via Folkadelphia Session)

Cover song heaven?  (MM faves) Strand of Oaks covering the sublime Wolves by (MM faves) Phosphorescent.

Download The Rural Alberta Advantage – North Star mp3 (from Departing)

A perfectly pitched tale of longing and desperation.

Download Widowspeak – Harsh Realm mp3 (from Harsh Realm 7″)

A nicely hazy, dreamy pop nugget that makes those Mazzy Star comparisons completely understandable.

Download Tyburn Saints – You’ve Gone Stray mp3 (from For The Benefit Of Strangers)

The theme tune to a slasher film written by Nick Cave? It could well be the sexiest serial killer based love song ever written.

Download Cult of Youth – New West mp3 (from Cult of Youth)

The dramatically deep baritone of vocalist Sean Ragon is enough to create a palpable sense of menace and foreboding which we’re quite fond of here at MM.

Download Obits – Shift Operator mp3 (from Moody, Standard and Poor)

Surf influenced, stripped back, garage rock.

Download The Owsley Brothers – Under The Shade Of A Live Oak mp3 (from Separated At Birth)

A slow, pulsing blues riff and a plaintive vocal combine perfectly to give us a song so authentic that it sounds like it was made to be sung in the cottonfields and on backwoods porches throughout the South.

Download The Diamond Center – Caraway mp3 (from Caraway 7″)

A haunting, echoing melancholy feel that spreads over almost six and a half pulsing minutes and somehow manages to soothe and surprise in equal measure.

Download Generationals – Ten-Twenty-Ten mp3 (from Actor-Caster)

Hands down the catchiest slice of indie-rock we’ve posted in a good long while.

Download Mathew Sawyer & The Ghosts – Revenge of The Extra From Zulu mp3 (from How Snakes Eat)

Fragile folk gem married to caustic lyrical venom. Result: a winner.

Download Alela Diane – To Begin mp3 (from Alela Diane & Wild Devine)

Bold and self-assured with more of a countrified twang than her usual sparser, pastoral folk feel.

Download The Lumerians – Gaussian Castles mp3 (from Transmalinnia)

Meditative drones, murky ritualistic rhythms, and layered vocals populate and abound. Dive in!

Download Josh T Pearson – Woman When I’ve Raised Hell…(Alternative Version) mp3

Seven heart wrenching minutes of the most despairing ballad in a long, long time documenting the relentless pain and suffering caused when a relationship passes from failing to broken.

Download The Donkeys – Don’t Know Who We Are mp3 (from Born With Stripes)

A perfect slice of twangy relaxed sunshine rock.

Download Dead Gaze – Fishing With Robert mp3 (from Dead Gaze 7″)

A marvellous combination of fuzzy vocal dischord over a folkish guitar strum, and a side order of New Order poppiness.

Download Erland & The Carnival – Nightingale mp3 (from Nightingale)

The reinventing of old folklore into sinister modern day fairytales.

Download Arborea – Careless Love mp3 (from Red Planet)

Mixing folk, some floating, spacey drone and minimalist percussion with Shanti Curran’s gorgeous vocals to mesmerising effect, the spine tingling results are stark, but beautifully compelling.

Download Paleo – In The Movies mp3 (from Fruit Of The Spirit)

Two minutes of indie folk perfection with a melody so catchy you’ll be humming it for days.

Download James Leg – Drowning In Fire mp3 (from Solitary Pleasure)

Imagine if the Black Keys sold their souls to the devil – they’d probably end up playing like this.

Download Twilight Hotel – Mahogany Veneer mp3 (from When The Wolves Go Blind)

A brilliant combination of alt-country and spaghetti-western desert twang that moves languidly to conclusion via poignant, scalpel sharp lyrics.

Download Bill Callahan – Baby’s Breath mp3 (from Apocalypse)

First taste from new album. More classic singer-songwriting!

Download Thurston Moore – Benediction mp3 (from Demolished Thoughts)

Personal and slightly brooding piece of work from the quieter, more introspective end of his musical spectrum.

Download Psychedelic Horseshit – French Countryside mp3 (from Laced)

Bustling, uptempo, hook-laden, melted outsider pop song.

Download Marissa Nadler – Baby I Will Leave You In The Morning mp3 (from Marissa Nadler)

Ethereal songwriting, rich with imagery and beautiful textures.

Download Fucked Up! – The Other Shoe mp3 (from David Comes To Life)

Punk rockers find a mellower more introverted side.

Download The Limianas – AF3548 mp3 (from AF3548 7″)

More authentic garage rock’n’roll done to perfection.

Download Damon Moon & The Whispering Drifters – Heaven Was A Glass Of Wine mp3 (Merle Haggard Cover from Snowed In Sessions EP)

Gorgeously cracked and bleeding version of Merle Haggard’s despairing original.

Download James Irwin – Blue Dust mp3 (from Blue Dust Digital Single)

A fine example of indie-folk of the very best kind.

Download The Builders & The Butchers – Rotten To The Core mp3 (from Dead Reckoning)

Calls to mind the blood and thunder preachers in dusty pulpits, the hellfires and the brimstone, and the intense fury of both the righteous and the scorned.

Download Brown Bird – Bilgewater mp3 (from The Sound of Ghosts EP)

A mix of sparse, haunted folk, outlaw country and gypsy riot!

And to finish off, here is another Strand of Oaks cover, this time of Joe Pug’s wonderful Hymn 101, a rare remix (for us anyway) of Moon Duo, a wonderful new band in the shape of rootsy trio Cowboy And Indian, the title track from blistering blues-rock duo White Mystery’s new album Blood & Venom and in the krautrock rhythms and pyschedelia of Echo Lady, probably Wet Hair’s finest release to date.

Download Strand Of Oaks – Hymn 101 mp3 (Joe Pug cover)

Download Moon Duo – In The Sun (Purling Hiss Remix) mp3

Download Cowboy And Indian – Ledbellies (Hurt My Pride) mp3 (from Cowboy And Indian)

Download White Mystery – Blood & Venom mp3 (from Blood & Venom)

Download Wet Hair – Echo Lady mp3 (from In Vogue Spirit)

Here are a few tasty new releases and a couple of tracks acquired via the blogosphere to brighten up your Friday. A veritable smorgasbord for you to sift through and pick out the ones you like.

First up is a second track from Canadians The Rural Alberta Advantage taken from their (very good) new album Departing and showcasing again their ear for a perfectly pitched tale of longing and quiet desperation.

Download The Rural Alberta Advantage – North Star mp3 (from Departing)


Next come Brooklyn’s Widowspeak and their new single via Captured Tracks. It is a nicely hazy, dreamy pop nugget that makes those Mazzy Star comparisons completely understandable.

Download Widowspeak – Harsh Realm mp3 (from Harsh Realm 7″)


Sleep oOo Over offer up Casual Diamond as the first single from their forthcoming debut album. It is fragile, ghostly and rather wonderful.

Download Sleep oOo Over – Casual Diamond mp3 (from Casual Diamond 7″)


By contrast, we picked up You’ve Gone Stray by Tyburn Saints via the excellent The Devil Has The Best Tuna blog, where it is described as sounding like “the theme tune to a slasher film written by Nick Cave. It could well be the sexiest serial killer based love song ever written.” Certainly good enough for a repost on MM.

Download Tyburn Saints – You’ve Gone Stray mp3 (from For The Benefit Of Strangers)


The rather curiously named Bass Drum Of Death dabble not in the pond of drum & bass (thankfully), but in an altogether more sleazy pool of garage rock, greasy guitar jangle, reverb and some high octane, no nonsense rock ‘n’ roll.

Download Bass Drum Of Death – Young Pros mp3 (from GB City)


New West comes from the self-titled debut album by Cult of Youth and is most commonly described as neo-folk (though we’ve seen one reference to something called post-punk doom goth…). However you want to define it, the dramatically deep baritone of vocalist Sean Ragon is enough to create a palpable sense of menace and foreboding which we’re quite fond of here at MM.

Download Cult of Youth – New West mp3 (from Cult of Youth)


Via Citizen Dick comes our introduction to Shivering Timbers, and another track well worthy of a re-post here on MM. Their description:  “Evening Prayer is the epic track of the record. Listen to the whole thing. Spoken word, psychedelia, straight blues, reverb filled square-dancing. This is the kitchen sink, and it’s so, so good.” They’re not wrong either!

Download Shivering Timbers – Evening Prayer mp3 (from We All Started In The Same Place)


Lastly Phineas & The Lonely Leaves is a band based out of Peekskill, NY. Their latest release, The Kids We Used To Be is just out and captures the essence of growing up in the Lower Hudson Valley of New York. Check out a couple of tracks of trademark driving rock force coupled with an infectious Americana indie folk swing.

Download Phineas & The Lonely Leaves – The Kids We Used To Be mp3 (from The Kids We Used To Be)

Download Phineas & The Lonely Leaves – The Bros Of Summer mp3 (from The Kids We Used To Be)

Here are a bunch of tunes that we’ve meant to post about for a while, but wanted to do them a bit more justice too than it turns out we’re able. It is the regular refrain of blogs like ours we know, but it doesn’t make it feel like any less of a cop out to not find the time to write these up properly.

So, with apologies to the artists involved, here is a wonderful and eclectic mix for a wet Wednesday in February.

The Seedy Seeds will release new album Verb Noun, within the coming months. Blending elements of electronica with the typically analog sounds of banjo, strings, and vocal harmonies. The contrast is warm and inviting, creating energetic music that is equally at home alongside a dance remix as it is alt-country or lo-fi pop.

Download The Seedy Seeds – Verb Noun mp3 (from Verb Noun)

Wants is a new collection of four songs written and performed by one of our most introspective and romantic of artists, Dana Jewell. Dana’s love of beautiful women and deep thought shines through on each hand wrought track. Order from the excellent Underwater Peoples label here.

Download Dana Jewell – Wants mp3 (from Wants 7″)

Everyone knows J Mascis from Dinosaur Jr. What you may not know is that his acoustically tinged new solo record, Several Shades Of Why, might be one of the best things he’s ever done.

Download J Mascis – Not Enough mp3 (from Several Shades Of Why)

Download J Mascis – Is It Done mp3 (from Several Shades Of Why)

The Rural Alberta Advantage have given us Stamp from new album Departing. It is a most enjoyable slab of anthemic indie rock.

Download The Rural Alberta Advantage – Stamp mp3 (from Departing)

Psychedelic-indie-pop duo, New Animal, from Georgia put their self-titled album out digitally last month for free. It has proved very popular and the whole thing can be got here and comes highly recommended.

Download New Animal – Ghost Police mp3 (from New Animal)

Football, etc will release their debut album The Draft this spring. It is indie-pop of the most infectious and sparklingly memorable kind.

Download Football, etc – Safety mp3 (from The Draft)

Download Football, etc – Sideline mp3 (from The Draft)

Oh Sunshine are another discovery via Rollo & Grady. A Japanese/US duo, I Belong To You is from their self-titled mini album and is warm, bluesy rock in the vein of Super Wild Horses.

Download Oh Sunshine – I Belong To You mp3 (from Oh Sunshine)

Lastly for today, Lullwater have just released their second album of raw, gritty indie rock. Titled Silhouette, we have a couple of tracks for your listening pleasure.

Download Lullwater – Let Me Out mp3 (from Silhouette)

Download Lullwater – One More Time mp3 (from Silhouette)