Greenwave Beth is the self-described ‘musical risk’ taken by Charles Rushforth and Will Blackburn, both of whom are also members of a fantastic band named Flowertruck – an opinion I know to be actual and fatual after following the yellow brick road laid by the duo’s track, “Love and Property”.
Where their main band plies their trade in wide-scale indie pop, Greenwave Beth is a more subdued experience. Rushforth’s dramatic croon/yelp – which bears at least a passing resemblance to folks like David Byrne and Edwyn Collins – is here melded to a skeletal, hypnotic synth structure. Over the following two minutes, “Love and Property” gradually adds layers without losing this minimalist charm, Rushforth’s anxious musings on the theme (“doesn’t suit me well/…take it off my hands for me/…I spent it all on you”) building to the dismissive vocal shout, “it’s the thought that counts”.
The track is taken from Greenwave Beth’s forthcoming EP, “People in Agony”, which is due June 8 from Sydney-based Dinosaur City Records. Act now, and you can listen to another excellent track, in the form of “Make Up”. You can/should also follow along with the band on fbook.
Spike Vincent, S-T EP (Burger; Dinosaur City)
Spike Vincent – pictured above with a glorious coiffure exuding an Italia ’90 Rudi Voller or Hard Target-era Van Damme vibe – hails from Hurlstone Park, Sydney, Australia. After releasing a couple of 7” singles on local label Dinosaur City Records, Vincent recently exhaled a self-titled EP chock full of shimmering, emotive indie guitar pop.
Where previous singles were self-produced, the EP sees Vincent backed by a full band as part of a live, in studio recording. The intimate, unpolished “live to tape” process serves as the perfect setting for the bruised romance of the EP’s six tracks. Highlights abound: “Lie in the Dust” swoops and darts – but never quite alights – like a long-lost The Church single (Vincent’s tone, particularly in the lower register, calls to mind that band’s Steve Kilbey); “Get Over It” is a luxurious internal monologue debating the merits of a relationship’s ‘next step’; closer, “I Like You” a somewhat tortured love note with a sing-along chorus and lines like “if I like you/will my soul turn into gravel/…will my life start to unravel”.
Vincent’s self-titled EP is available now, via Dinosaur City and Burger Records in the US. You can grab a copy on his bandcamp while having your data pilfered on fbook (too soon?) and instagram.
Bed Wettin’ Bad Boys, Rot (What’s Your Rupture?; R.I.P. Society; Agitated Records)
Bed Wettin’ Bad Boys are a four-piece hailing from Sydney, featuring members of bands including Royal Headache and Red Red Krovvy. Following on 2013’s great debut, Ready for Boredom, the group released Rot this past November, and it’s amazing.
Rot finds the band barreling through an 11-song, 30 minutes and change set of fuzzed-out power pop that recalls folks like Wreckless Eric or a punkier Replacements. The combination of the raw, strained emotion in singer Joe Sukit’s voice over the grin-inducing melodies crafted by guitarist Ben Warnock is a potent one, and the band pulls off wry piss takes like “Expanding Horizons” and “Company”, and wistful reflections like opener “Away” and album highlight, “Device”, with equal aplomb. As closer, “Turn of the Page” ascends to an extended call and response between saxophone and a crunchingly beautiful solo worthy of ‘Starry Eyes’, the album leaves you with a hopeful sense that, despite leaving some scars, its titular degeneration is clearing.
Rot is available now, courtesy of a trio of labels: What’s Your Rupture? (US/Canada), R.I.P. Society (Australia, New Zealand) and Agitated (UK/EU) – pick your fave currency and buy a copy. The group also have a few tour dates coming up down under (sorry) – you can find them on the band’s fbook page.
Highlights include: “Victoria”; “Away”; “Device”.