Flying Vinyl is a project that keeps on growing, from a tentative idea to a thriving and ever growing community of music lovers. In the last few months they’ve expanded into an electronic vinyl service and announced a huge one day festival in Hackney on the 9th April featuring Swim Deep, Black Honey, Kagoule, The Magic Gang and many more- tickets available here (16+ only). We took a look at the March edition’s lineup of upcoming artists pressed on vinyl.
Meadowlark – Paraffin / Satellite
They might come packaged as indie folk but Bristol duo Meadowlark (making their second appearance in a FV box) fall more readily into the category of synth-ish-pop, all soft, reverb-drenched melodies over electronic drum beats and Katie McGill’s soothing vocals. ‘Paraffin’ is an archetypal slow burning pop song, made for summer night times in dark bedrooms. “You wanna see everything/and I wanna be your paraffin” might not be tearing up the lyrical rulebook but the instrumentation makes it surprisingly hot, heavy music. B-side ‘Satellite’ is a similar blend of clean cut chart pop and something different and less wholesome; while chart music needs big drops and in-your-face hooks, Meadowlark take the wholesome essence of synthy teen pop and strip it back to the bare minimum, gently smouldering embers rather than explosions.
Listen to Paraffin here.
Sunbeam Sound Machine – Getting Young / Daibutsu
An Australian making psychedelic rock? Unprecedented. Cliches aside however, Melbourne solo act Nick Sowersby, AKA Sunbeam Sound Machine, is no Kevin Parker disciple in his Flying Vinyl debut. ‘Getting Young’ is a psych rock jam wavering between existential anxiety and summery fuzz pop, with Sowersby imploring “Take me back to 1991/Take me to the place that I came from” at odds with the soaring guitar riffs and tight, compressed drumming. ‘Daibutsu’ loops around endlessly. His alias describes his sound perfectly; imagine sunlight passing through a prism-like machine, the refracted beams forming hazy psychedelic bliss.
Sunbeam Sound Machine’s debut album ‘Wonderer’ is available for preorder now at echodrug.com/store.
The Britanys – In The Morning (She’s Electric) / Basketholder
It’s no coincidence that in the title of their A-side track ‘In The Morning (She’s Electric)’, New Yorkers The Britanys manage to rip off song names from two seminal British guitar acts; this is a band facing determinedly backwards. It’s all painfully retro, recorded through ten layers of fuzz and crackle, rendering the affectatious vocals incomprehensible from the garage rock backdrop. Of course it’s perfectly acceptable to be derivative- the last half century is a cornucopia of musical influence- but music that draws heavily on the past has to come with a fresh coat of paint, souped up and revving for the 21st century. Essentially, to be a white male garage rock group, you have to be a little bit interesting. The Britanys are not.
The B-side to their Flying Vinyl release is available to listen to on SoundCloud– you may disagree.
Saltwater Sun- Making Eyes / Habit On My Mind
London five-piece Saltwater Sun don’t hang about before launching into their ballsy, exciting A-side ‘Making Eyes’. This song is everything that indie pop should be; fresh, catchy and vibrant with a snarl lying just underneath the surface. Jennifer Stearne’s performance is one of a much more experienced frontwoman, the chorus “Making eyes/You say that you’re not but you are the kind” yelled with just the right amount of sweetness and menace. A wriggling bassline leads the way in B-side ‘Habit On My Mind’, a slightly less arresting but nonetheless wonderful fistful of dynamic guitar music. Saltwater Sun’s debut EP ‘Wild’ is available here and they’ve promised new music is on its way. Definitely ones to watch this year.
Yonaka – Ignorance / Run
Flying Vinyl really save the best until last with Brighton quartet Yonaka. ‘Ignorance’ simmers to breaking point from brooding dark pop to a feverish, explosive chorus of “Oh I’m awake now honey”. It never stays in one place long enough for the waters to still around it, wave after wave of surprise propel it ever onwards- there’s even a hint of harsh vocals at one point. Proof that the best music comes with an element of danger. ‘Run’ is a bigger, heavier juggernaut of a track, tongue-twisting verses over stomping riffs and military drumming only pausing momentarily to let Theresa Jarvis’ vocals ring out. Rightly compared to “Haim soaked in dirty scuzz” by Flying Vinyl”, Yonaka are more sinister and volatile than the California sisters, and all the better for it.
Stream Ignorance and Run here.