Archives for posts with tag: Cardiff

Suggested Friends.jpgSuggested Friends describe their sound as ‘tweemo’ and, while this is no doubt tongue-in-cheek, it does indeed combine some noisy emotional punk pop with the kind of perfect melodic songcraft that would’ve fitted perfectly on Sarah Records in the 90s. Here’s 1 minute 51 seconds of their perfect melodic songcraft:

Suggested Friends are from London and comprised of Jack McGinn, Kirsty Fife, Faith Taylor, & Christabel Williams.  “I Can’t Roll My Eyes That Far (Back)” is almost impossibly melodic and bounds through so many twists and turns in a short time – including a glorious fuzzy 12-string guitar solo – that it fair takes the breath away.

It’s on their self-titled album, which is out on LP format on Cardiff’s Odd Box Records.  Give it a whirl and while you are there check out the other releases on this enterprising DIY label.

the-bellamys“I wanna be your best friend” promise The Bellamys in this track from their brand new 4 song EP, but it almost feels more like a sinister threat than an infatuated admission.

The label – Cardiff’s fine Odd Box Records – says “for fans of The Pastels, Talulah Gosh, and Slayer”, and I totally get all those. The beat and persistent hypnotic drone in particular evokes the spirit of The Pastels’ “Truck, Train, Tractor” single.

The most immediately striking thing about this brilliant song is the guitar tone, which is not the heavy metal of Slayer but just as brutal and could best be described as aluminium foil. Strummed aluminium foil. With an electric current run through the foil and the person strumming it. What a sound!

When the vocals kick in the drone-like qualities forming the song take on something of a psychedelic Eastern mantra. It’s fantastic.

The tinny but electrifying frenetic strum, synth drone (I’m guessing), the pounding drums. It’s all very post-punk and mixes the ephemeral with tension.

Very keen to hear the rest of this EP from The Bellamys.

Only 50 cassettes. Half gone already. Don’t sleep on it if this is your thing.


“Golau Arall” (which translates from Welsh as “Other Light” in case you are wondering) is from the 2015 Gwenno album “Y Dydd Olaf”

The song – and the whole album – evokes a different world. Part terrestrial (motorik bass & drum pulse) and part extra-terrestrial (the effect-drenched semi-whispered vocals and sci-fi electronic instrumentation).

Anyone with a fondness for the brightly-coloured retro-futurist pop of Stereolab or the playful sound-collage experimental pop of Broadcast will find plenty to entice them here.

Ten years ago Gwenno Saunders was part of  The Pipettes and singing about space (sort of). There’s a political theme here too – possibly even a concept album of a dystopian human-machine future where Welsh is used for cryptic human communication.

For non-Welsh speakers you might think the language used to convey socialist and feminist themes undermines the effectiveness of these messages. But singing in a minority language in the Western-UK-US music world is itself a political statement, a point made in this  interview with Gwenno from The Seventh Hex.

Here’s another brilliant song from the album”Chwyldro” (Revolution) –