It’s already October and we’ve reached the middle of the month, meaning the bloggers of the Music Alliance Pact stand ready to bring you the very best from their parts of the world. From South Korea this month I’m exceptionally happy to be able to offer a song from one of my all-time favorite artists: Tearliner! He just made a return with his second full-length album–the long awaited Grey Garden–containing an excellent array of songs in both Korean and English. My choice fell on “낯선 친밀감 (Strange Intimacy)” and I hope you will all enjoy it as much as I do. Learn more on Tearliner’s new album through our recent interview.
Click the play button icon to listen to individual songs, right-click on the song title to download an mp3, or grab a zip file of the full 29-track compilation through Ge.tt here.
SOUTH KOREA: Korean Indie
Tearliner – Strange Intimacy
The mid-00s offered Korean indie-pop at its very finest with Tearliner as one of the key artists. Eight years after his first full-length, Tearliner returned with the Grey Garden album last month showcasing a more polished sound than the lo-fi productions he would previously offer. Strange Intimacy is a pretty, slow-paced, dreamy piece perfectly combining the best of both the old and new Tearliner.
Juani – Déjame Entrar
Juani’s involvement with music began during his teenage years and it hasn’t stopped since. Songwriter, singer, musician, producer, cultural manager… you name it. In between his multiple projects (one of them being involved with Rosario’s biggest independent label Planeta X), Juani managed to pull out a new solo album called La Paz Ciencia (a pun between the words “peace” and “science”), with songs that range from Argentine folk to pop and acoustic rock. Déjame Entrar is our favorite track but you can download the whole thing from the website.
AUSTRALIA: Who The Bloody Hell Are They?
White Caves – I’ve Lost
White Caves is the new venture from Melbourne songwriter Darren Cordeux. The former Kisschasy frontman has completely left behind the acoustic teen psyche of 2006 for a much looser sound. I’ve Lost carves a completely uplifting vibe out of sombre song content. Thanks to some clear-cut production, soaring vocals and a vibe that sounds like MGMT’s Andrew VanWyngarden fronting a slacker-pop band, White Caves is lending a new dimension of fun to typical ‘pop-jams’ right here.
Amere Meander – Something I Am Not
Three kindergarten friends form a band and make pop music. Viennese Amere Meander appeared out of nowhere with songs that are sometimes dreamy and sweet, sometimes mysterious and noisy, drawing inspiration from anything from shoegaze to Fleetwood Mac. Always catchy but never unpredictable, Something I Am Not is taken from their debut album To Lead Astray.
BRAZIL: Meio Desligado
Karol Conka – Boa Noite
Karol Conka, an artist on the rise in the Brazilian hip hop scene, caught the media’s attention with her first singles and this year she released her debut album. Boa Noite is one of its best tracks, with a strong beat and African vocal melodies. This song is also included in the FIFA 2014 game, alongside the likes of Nine Inch Nails, Portugal. The Man and Disclosure.
CANADA: Quick Before It Melts
Twin Library – There’s Always An End
Edmonton, Alberta’s Twin Library are chemists, experimenting and tweaking the formula that results in their incredibly sophisticated and sonically rich songs. They are prolific recorders and their latest release, They Were Marked As Targets, is their finest collection of unconventional pop yet.
CHILE: Super 45
Bronko Yotte – Bruma
After a three-year break, MC and producer Bronko Yotte (Felipe Berríos) gets back on track with a new album, Con Eso Te Digo Todo, released through Dilema Industria. On its 22 tracks, Bronko Yotte offers profound considerations about the system’s incongruities, social relations and working life, without losing his sharpness and sense of humor. Bruma features Jamez Manuel (Zonora Point).
COLOMBIA: El Parlante Amarillo
La Chiva Gantiva – Para Arriba
The story of La Chiva Gantiva began in Brussels with a group of young Colombians who started playing percussion together. Driven by a desire to assert their roots, they started to blend Colombian rhythms with other styles of music such as rock, Afrobeat and funk. Today they are preparing their second album Vivo and we can enjoy, in advance, Para Arriba, a song about inspiration.
DENMARK: All Scandinavian
Charlie Campari – Bass Vampires
Music is good for much, but in the case of Charlie Campari it’s a lifesaver. It’s what keeps him off the needle and his first solo release, Moon Cricket EP, tackles his demons and past life on the streets of Copenhagen and several overdoses – three of them fatal – on a backdrop of acidic blues reminiscing Lou Reed, early Beck and The Brian Jonestown Massacre. Check out MAP exclusive download Bass Vampires and the cool video for single Monkey King.
DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: La Casetera
Carolina Camacho – Ninfa De Las Aguas
Carolina Camacho’s voice is truly one of a kind, but she leaves nothing to chance. After many years of intense lyrical training, she’s been a part of various local musical acts such as SonAbril and Camacho. Recently she’s gone solo, dedicating herself to exploring the worlds of vocal jazz, roots music and feminine empowerment on her newest single Ninfa De Las Aguas. Her first album Atabey is out on October 16.
ECUADOR: Plan Arteria
Mamá Soy Demente – Salsa De Marte
Mamá Soy Demente, a Guayaquilean duo formed by Dennis Darquea and Carlos Bohórquez, present their new single Salsa De Marte. The track, which plays with the idea of making a rock song with salsa influence, is part of their live album Mamá Soy Demente (En Vivo).
ENGLAND: Drowned In Sound
Annie Eve – Elvis (Live at Sofar Birmingham)
Sometimes the ache drips down the side of a song. Annie Eve is from north London and has quietly begun building a fanbase. DiS recently saw this impressive young lady headline a sold-out church venue for those pulse-fingering folksters Communion Records. She takes a dab of influence from Bon Iver but casts her own shadow over these gentle sad-songs whilst her voice wows. If you fell under Daughter’s spell in 2012/13 then you’ll likely be obsessed with Annie Eve in 2014.
Imandra Lake – Metsatants
Imandra Lake is the new project of Rein Fuks and Eve Komp of Tallinn band Pia Fraus, and follows a similar indie-shoegaze line but it’s all fresh and they sing in Estonian. Imandra Lake’s sound is noisy and reverberant but less pop and quite tranquil and deep, reaching even the boundaries of the darker side of folk. Metsatants is a new track from their forthcoming second album which continues the same warm sound.
Gim Kordon – Ei Ole Helppoo (early demo version)
If J Mascis knew Finnish he would probably sound like the guys in Gim Kordon. This punk-rock trio, the first Finnish-language signing to hip label Soliti, is readying a debut album for next spring. As a first taste here’s a raw and noisy early demo of Ei Ole Helppoo. The chorus is very catchy, so don’t fear the language and sing along.
Dalot – Ancestors
Dalot is the creative alias of Maria Papadomanolaki. Ancestors EP, which was inspired by her grandfather’s old photographs, is a reconstruction of fragments, not concerned with the accuracy of images and moments but with opening up the flood of memory mechanics to imagination and transformation. The songs of the EP reveal a cascade of emotions and offer an exploration of texture and atmosphere, as physical instruments merge with subtle electro-acoustic ambience and ethereal turbulences. The haunting title track features Izumi Suzuki’s angelic vocals.
Hoirong – Bajrang Bali
Guitarist Kamal Singh of erstwhile Bangalore post-rock act Lounge Piranha has struck gold with his newest side-project Hoirong. His debut album, The Resurrection Of The Princess Of Woe And Her Vampire Hound Posse, is not only a mouthful of a title but a grungy, raw record recorded wholly on a laptop mic, spanning from disco-punk to noise-rock, with lo-fi production and a dark sense of humor. The album is Singh’s ode to the 90s alternative music scene and definitely wins over fans of dirtier, lo-fi music.
Puti Chitara – Sarsaparilla Dream
Jakarta singer-songwriter Puti Chitara makes beautiful pop songs with sweet arrangements. She recently won a contest at A Exchange to support the recording of her debut album.
Green Like July – Moving To The City
Produced by A.J. Mogis (Saddle Creek Records) and recorded in the Arc Studios in Omaha, Nebraska, Build A Fire is the third album by Green Like July. Mike Mogis of Bright Eyes and Jake Bellows of Neva Dinova, among others, collaborated on various songs. Green Like July have their roots in American tradition but they can evoke the magic of classic Beatles melodies.
JAPAN: Make Believe Melodies
Hisamokuden-Kow. – Our Song
Hisamokuden-Kow. calls the relatively relaxed prefecture of Tochigi, a few hours north of Tokyo, home. It is not a place one expects a busy track like Our Song to emerge from, all skittery beats and manipulated vocals tumbling over one another in an almost cartoon fashion. Yet despite how crowded it can get, it retains a catchiness throughout. Not bad, Tochigi.
MALTA: Stagedive Malta
FellowFish – The Outlaw
Hailing from Valletta, Lyon and New York, FellowFish find themselves on the tiny Mediterranean island of Gozo (Malta’s sister island). FellowFish is made up of lead singer and writer Keith Anthony, Christophe Ladret on percussion/drums and Kristian Vella on guitars. Their self-titled debut album, released earlier this year, has a mix of influences, ranging from Al Jarreau’s smooth groove to Jeff Buckley’s melancholic melodies.
MEXICO: Red Bull Panamérika
Caloncho – Palmar
Pop-folk flavoured with coconut milk, composed using flip-flops and lying on a hammock by the palm trees. Caloncho comes from the sun-drenched city of Guadalajara and is known for wearing flowery Hawaiian shirts on stage and throwing bananas to the front rows. His debut Fruta EP has some juicy, fruity tunes that combine a vintage Tex-Mex rock ‘n’ roll from the likes of Ritchie Valens but also squeezes a hint of reggae on the mix. Palmar, first single and video, is an invitation to lay by a topless brunette on a Mexican beach and sway oblivious from the real world.
Víctor Hugo – Lima Es Nuestra
After the separation of promising band Mi Jardín Secreto, singer Víctor Hugo Vargas began to release his own singles, preparing the way for the arrival of debut album El Primer Disco De Víctor Hugo, available for free from his website. Lima Es Nuestra is about a farewell and other reflections, narrated under the same nostalgic sky of the city where he lives, Lima.
POLAND: Łukasz Kuśmierz Weblog
We Draw A – Tears From The Sun
So here’s autumn again and it’s hard to imagine a better anthem for those days than Tears From The Sun. Although the electro-pop duo only appeared on the Polish scene this year, We Draw A founder Pete Levy is known from Indigo Tree, a guitar-oriented band who recorded two LPs and gathered some underground fame from 2009-2011. We Draw A are recording for the Brennnessel label.
PORTUGAL: Posso Ouvir Um Disco?
Tape Junk – No Romance Without Finance
João Correia, an accomplished singer-songwriter, musician and also a drummer for friends’ bands, had his first entry in MAP in December 2011, but as Julie & The Carjackers. This time he visits us with another project, Tape Junk, who recently released debut album The Good & The Mean, where No Romance Without Finance comes from. The song is backed with this vídeo.
PUERTO RICO: Puerto Rico Indie
Bando – Serembé
Bando is a new collaborative effort between veteran musicians of Puerto Rico’s rock scene, including Agustín Criollo (Astrid Pröll) and Gaby Vidal (ONGO, Similar), focussed on exploring the music of the African diaspora through the classic and revolutionary Afrobeat sound. The group follows Fela Kuti into fertile territories for musical exploration such as bomba and Afro-American funk, inviting us to lose ourselves in dance without shying away from political lyrics that reflect the island’s struggles. Bando are currently recording their debut, and have graciously offered us eight-minute scorcher Serembé as a MAP exclusive download.
ROMANIA: Babylon Noise
Fine It’s Pink – Sky Is No Limit (Intro)
Fine It’s Pink are new to the music scene but they are growing up fast. Although you can’t put a finger on one genre, you can clearly hear post-rock, indie, electronic and strong psychedelic influences. Sky Is No Limit is their statement song, the one that takes you into their world of dreams. You can hear more of this world on SoundCloud.
SCOTLAND: The Pop Cop
There Will Be Fireworks – Roots
If anyone could be held up as a glowing example of the ‘less is more’ approach it’s There Will Be Fireworks. Four long years after the release of their acclaimed self-titled debut album, Scotland’s reclusive princes of guitar-rock reverie have finally announced details of its successor, The Dark, Dark Bright, out on November 25 through Comets & Cartwheels. The album finds the group in a masterful embrace of the grandiose and the graceful – MAP exclusive download Roots falls into the latter category as the tenderest of tender acoustic compositions.
UNITED STATES: We Listen For You
Jared Bartman – Garden Gate
Jared Bartman crafts majestic songs that twist pop elements around a sensitive core stabilized by occasional adventurous flourishes. Bartman’s music can act as a backdrop for a smooth listen or something to be studied with the headphones fastened tight. Either way, Bartman is a must-listen for everyone.
VENEZUELA: Música y Más
Laura Guevara – El Constructor (live)
Laura Guevara is a young woman who has everything – she is a singer, songwriter, artist, actress and audiovisual director, besides having a melodious voice that impressed attendees of last year’s Virgen Fest. She currently has a live EP out while she puts the finishing touches to her debut album.