Category Archives: TVD UK

UK Artist of the Week, Benjamin Yellowitz

With an ear for dark, mysterious pop, we couldn’t NOT feature Benjamin Yellowitz as our UK Artist of the Week. His single “Ash Wednesday” took us completely by surprise, and listening to it for the first time we couldn’t tell whether we were about to get a face full of metal, religious folk, or a full-blown R&B choral breakdown.

To put it bluntly, the man has found his sound and it is impressive. Not content to sit back once the writing and singing is done, Benjamin also has quite the flare as a producer with some sneaky little clicks and chirrups hidden throughout the track that, if it were possible, make your ears do a double take.

You can look forward to an EP and if you’re in Europe, a host of live shows when he heads out on tour. Remember the name, because you’ll be seeing it everywhere soon.

“Ash Wednesday” is out now via BYz Records.

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Shell Zenner Presents

Greater Manchester’s most in the know radio host Shell Zenner broadcasts the best new music every week on the UK’s Amazing Radio and Bolton FM. You can also catch Shell’s broadcast here at TVD every Thursday.

“My ROTW was released at the back end of 2014 and just sneaked into my fave records of the year, but did you miss it? It’s called Ganglion Reef and it’s a total garage psych stomper from WAND. I’m grooving just thinking about it!

This weeks #Shellshock is from that mystical Yorkshire electro wizard Brolin who has just landed Stateside to play his first shows over there.” —SZ

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UK Video: Kill The Waves, “Vow”

Scotland’s Kill The Waves are a strange lot. Not in that they look or sound strange, quite the opposite in fact, but due to their eclectic take on the electro genre.

The six-piece are most certainly adept at using their instrumental skills to play with a number of genres—electro meets lo-fi indie—as Kill The Waves pull on all manner of influences from the likes of M83 and Four Tet, to Scottish indie legends such as The Twilight Sad.

Majestic download track “Vow” illustrates Kill The Waves’ abundant talent as samples, guitar, and arranged strings are held together neatly by Tim Kwant’s pouting vocals. The video is shot on a roof in Glasgow which explains the grey backdrop and cheery disposition of the band.

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The Single Girl: Sorren Maclean, “Way Back Home” EP

If you’re a folk fan, the choices in the current crop of artists both in the US and the UK are almost overwhelming but there are still a few nuggets of quality that float to the top and demand to be listened to.

Hailing from the Isle of Mull and currently accompanying Idlewild on their UK tour, Scottish singer/songwriter Sorren Maclean is one of these nuggets, and his latest EP “Way Back Home” displays a remarkable maturity of penmanship and arrangement.

Opener and title track “Way Back Home” is Americana through and through, touching all the emotional bases as Sorren describes life on the road, capturing the journey and anticipation of a jobbing musician finishing a tour. It also has a Fleetwood Mac feel to it, and the song’s hooks stick around long after you’ve taken it off your stereo.

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UK Artist of the Week:
The Actions

The Actions are an alternative rock band with a difference—they are heavily influenced by trip hop, dark wave, and psychedelia, giving them the unique and captivating sound that resonates through each of their tracks.

Their forthcoming EP “Indefensible” is a collection of dark and atmospheric tones, bringing in elements from multiple genres including electronica and post-rock. Lead vocalist and bassist Silty’s brooding, ominous voice is unmistakable and could bear comparison to Alison Goldfrapp or Portishead’s Beth Gibbons—except darker.

Add to that Mo Stellato’s vigorous, distorted guitar riffs and the duo have created a sound so powerful, dynamic, and full of conviction that you won’t be able to forget about them in a hurry for all the right reasons.

“Indefensible” is released on April 5th via Niteo Records.

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UK Video: CARALIS, “Clicks In”

Electro wizard CARALIS is due to release his debut single later this month. The project, started by former Anison frontman Dan Frau, is his first foray into a more electronic-tinged genre having cut his teeth on London’s always thriving alt-rock scene.

By teaming up with producer John Merriman, CARALIS has created the kind of sound that can be found in some of the ’80s electro-pop scene with more than a tinge of modern IDM pioneers such as Caribou and Thom Yorke.

There is a lot to admire here considering this is the first release by the duo—beats penetrate and the vocals and keys create an atmospheric track, topped off by a psychedelic video featuring the man himself.

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UK Video: The Capture Effect, “Lies and False Signals”

Londoners The Capture Effect have released their video for “Lies and False Signals,” a track taken from their forthcoming debut EP “Frequencies” out 23rd March.

The video was shot in the picturesque seaside town of Brighton where the band recorded their EP and it’s a departure from their earlier politically charged efforts, like the relentless download track “SKYwave,” as the bands lyrics chart the end of a longterm relationship. Who says Londoners are miserable?

The Capture Effect have produced an impressively big sound with synth, keys, screeching guitar, and samples berating life into the more traditional alternative rock sound.

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Shell Zenner Presents

Greater Manchester’s most in the know radio host Shell Zenner broadcasts the best new music every week on the UK’s Amazing Radio and Bolton FM. You can also catch Shell’s broadcast here at TVD every Thursday.

“My ROTW is from a Geordie band that I’ve been a fan of for years and years. I first chatted to them back in 2010 and this time they’ve released a record on their own label—it is the smallest label and it’s perfect in every way! Little Comets’ Hope is Just a State of Mind is this week’s record of the week and I’ll be spinning three tracks off it.

This weeks #Shellshock is from a band called W I N T E R, they’re two brothers releasing on Wild Sound Recordings out of Cambridge.” —SZ

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UK Artist of the Week:
The Curious Incident

As we head into a new season, winter behind us and the sun beginning to peep its cheery head above the clouds, The Curious Incident is delivering smiles and springtime cheer.

Their EP “Penny Lonesome” is already out but their next single “Please Don’t Say” will be released at the end of March. Their video for track “Money” however is full of cheery up-tempo indie melodies. This band doesn’t take themselves too seriously—they’re four boys who enjoy making music together and are having a great time doing it as well.

Perhaps, in these troubled times with buttoned-up, coiffed indie bands taking themselves ever so seriously, it’s time for a little lightness, it’s time to enjoy music again in a different way and The Curious Incident deliver their message with a large dose of unadulterated fun.

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UK Artist of the Week: Stark

Stark are a powerful three-piece from Brighton who have spent the last three years honing their musicianship and releasing their own music. They are bringing alternative blues/rock into the 21st century with a sound so explosive you may just fall off your chair.

Their latest single “Tunnel Vision” is about modern life and how, sometimes, the freedom that we take for granted can be an illusion. The simple yet effective video for “Tunnel Vision” is filmed in the studio where they recorded the track, giving us a chance to see the trio mastering their instrumentation while having a bit of a laugh at the same time. Some lovely visual shots thrown in there as well.

Although Stark are heavily influenced by early blues artists such as Robert Johnson and Blind Lemon Jefferson, they also admire the energy of bands like Rage Against The Machine and the progressive sound of Tool and Porcupine Tree. This eclectic mix is what makes their sound so distinctive.

Tunnel Vision will be out on March 2nd 2015 via Rusty Shed Records.

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