The Very Best Of ‘Track Of The Day’ 2021
Another year of “Track Of The Day” around the world, always with a particular focus on newcomers … my heartfelt thanks to all the bands/artists for having triggered my aural pleasure, I wish them all the best with the hope of seeing them develop and improve their art, here is a random selection. Happy New Year!!!
- Скубут [Skubut] “Акт самоубийства / An Act Of Suicide” from the album “Меланхоличен / Melancholic” [Vienna-based, Russian Dark Wave /Cold Wave project of Mikhail ‘Misha’ Shlepin]
Cold, yet equally poignant, filled with dark, beautiful, aching sorrowfulness, ably blends the sharp, edgy iciness and minimalism ala Lebanon Hanover with the distinctive, intense melancholy and emotional turmoil of Russian ‘doomer’ bands
- ORGREAVE “Disassembly” title track from debut EP “Disassembly” via Electric Fire Records [Vienna, Austria Post-Punk /Synth Pop 4-piece]
a dark synth-pop aesthetic, with moody post-punk leanings, coated in mysteriously oppressive devilish tones and fiendish lyrics, harnessing echoes of the past mechanically liltingly over an ominous prospect of humming foreboding vibes, sullen glaring synthetic textures, and wicked deep vocalizations to instigate modern dystopian gloom.
- HOLY SHIPS “Giant Step, Small Leap” from the EP “Les Deux Regards” on Declared Goods [Stockholm‘s based shoegaze /psychedelic pop project of Swedish musician Jonatan Westh]
A vibrant and mesmerizing sound lies in a fertile interaction between organic and electronic instrumentation, amidst enveloping swathes of evocative blazing synth, shoegaze distorted textures, Madchester syncopated groovy rhythms, enshrouded in shimmering psychedelic dust…a mistifying, gripping and intriguing jam, sparkling with alluring danceable popadelic shades
- HAUNT ME “Surrender to the Night” single [Austin, Texas Darkwave /Post-Punk band led by vocalist and multi-instrumentalist Darius Davila]
Fueled by dynamic and evocative instrumentation, sometimes cutting and abrasive, sometimes brooding and immersive, the singer perfectly adapts his enticing vibrant voice to different emotional moods conveyed by the lyrics with an extreme and obsessive, yet sincere approach filled with lust-driven energy
- ALTAN “Binalar” [Turkish Post-Punk /Darkwave /Sad Doomer one-man band based in Istanbul]
marching rumbling low ends down a syncopated frenzied rush of an obsessive spiral of doom, while a humming whirlwind of glassy wandering synth stretching, shrinking and twisting atop cold distressed male vocals and warm airy sighs ignite numb melancholic moods from the relentless barrage of modern dystopic anxiety.
- GRIMDELUXE “The Empty Road” from the debut LP “Mokum” on TONN Recordings [Dutch Darkwave /Electronic /Synthwave solo project from Amsterdam]
gripping retro-futuristic and techno-infused slabs of his distinctive ‘Goth-Wave’, made of driving hypnotic drum machine rhythms, thrumming bass lines and fluctuating angst-filled layer of cold synth isolation around his emotionally detached baritone hopelessly emphasizing the barren void of modern life dystopia.
- DENNER “A Stab Of Loneliness” off of the EP “Semi Monde” [French New Wave /Post-punk /Coldwave band]
Blurring the lines between nostalgia and modern freshness, Denner ably crafts melodic, enthralling, equally somberly refined and emotionally engaging, misty soundscapes, darkened by vibrating dismal bass pulsations and hypnotic steady drum machines, whilst enlivened by a poignant web of shimmering 6-string arpeggios, over a voice full of pathos, dropping turbulent romantic introspection and seething outbursts of sorrow and sadness.
- GLASSZONE “Nightwalk” single from the LP ” Moments” [French Shoegaze /Post-punk /Coldwave solo project from Orleans]
captivating achingly melodic bass line, dripping with solemn melancholy, sinuously pulsing in helpless abandon, dimly lit by a sizzling bed of reverb-drenched abrasive distortion, together with soft detached male vocals, brooding restlessly, cloaked with fear and anxiety, in a desolate, sad ‘night walk’, haunted by a solitude of memories.
- DEAD CRUSH “Apocalypse Sentimental” from the debut mini-LP “Good-Bye My Hero” via Red Maze Records.[Brussels based, Barcelona-native Post-punk /Darkwave one-woman-band ]
injects a refreshing dose of turbulent and bodily Latin vibes into the algid, mechanical, and metronomic ‘Teutonic’ coldness of the 80s-tinged darkwave and post-punk, rife with painful sensuality and murky charm, in a decadent and melancholic world of torments, passions, sorrow and loss.
- JAUS “Oceans” [Mexico City Dream Pop /Noise Rock /Psychedelic /Shoegaze 4-piece band]
early 90s classic shoegaze sound, slowed and dreamy, equally energetic and vigorous, that combines seamlessly both melody and distortion, through a superb guitar work, with stirring aural catharsis.
- COALTAR “Criteria” [French Lo-fi /Post-punk /Coldwave project]
builds alienating, oppressive and magnetic atmospheres, pervaded by gloomy moods and creeping, brooding tension, fueled by ominous mechanical rhythms and angst-ridden gripping vocals.
- THE HERE TODAYS “Miranda” off of 2-track “Demo”[Joensuu, Finland Post-punk /Dream Pop /Shoegaze band]
Leaving the post-punk and dream pop leanings in the background, the band’s guitar-driven sound has become denser as it is ethereal, sharper as it is immersive, harking back to the classic shoegaze of the 90s
- WARSAW PACT “Monarca” off of the double A-side single “Monarca /Witnessed” [Los Angeles based Indie Rock /Post-punk band]
a more dynamic and disruptive sound, highly hypnotic and danceable, based on deadly cutting riffs, swirling bass throbs and blasting grooves, straddling the line between the melodic energy of indie-rock, somehow remind me of the inebriated punch of early Bloc Party, and the raw, throbbing and nervous rhythmic vibrancy of post-punk.
- DROWN “Roses” [Halifax, Nova Scotia Indie/ Grunge / Shoegaze solo project]
Noise and melody collide and blend in Drown‘s passionate guitar-laden sound with a haunting and mesmerizing combination of shoegaze, grunge, noise rock and post-rock, throbbing with intense 90s rock vibes
- THE SECRET EXPERIMENT “Blood” [Hamilton, UK darkwave project of Lea Torn]
an esoteric, solemn and atmospheric dark sound marked distinctly for its evocative and mysterious intimism at the same time majestic yet organic, as it is resonant yet restrained, smouldering under gloomy shadows of inner turmoil
- PRISMS “Hot Under The Collar” title track from the album “Hot Under The Collar” [Miami, Florida Punk-Punk /Dreampop /Shoegaze /Indie Rock one-man project of multi-instrumentalist, composer and singer Daniel Cardona]
…guitar-laden sound, equally energetic and vibrant, hardly discordant, as dreamy and introspective, which ebbs and flows in captivating, yet candidly familiar, winding sparkly melodies, with a nuanced balance of shadow and light, over a tormented emotional rollercoaster ride brimming with sincerity, sadness, and deep melancholy.
- TURQUOISE “Voix Off” from the 2-track single “Voix Off / Tumulte” [Brussels, Belgium Post-Punk /Shoegaze /New Wave band]
Although strewn with clear 80s new wave and post-punk suggestions, the Belgian combo’s melancholic and poignant melodic lines, at the same time groovy and dynamic, heightened by the alluring nuanced voice of Sarah Bloom, as vulnerable and dreamy, as it is strong and passionate, is not defined or restrained by their influences, but unceasingly insinuates their distinctive personality
- BASSE FIDÉLITÉ “Par exemple” from the 2-track “EP1″ on Tamed Records [French Minimal Coldwave DIY solo project]
French cold wave of obscure, powerful, emotional energy combined with algid, chilling and mechanized tones, all enhanced by nihilistic and poetic lyrics drenched in existential angst
- DREAM ROOM “Ride” Single [Melbourne, Australia Shooegaze /Dream Pop trio]
Teetering between vivid consistency and atmospheric abstraction, introspective dream pop and twinkling shoegaze…An all-encompassing aural immersion that pulls at your emotions.
- LAST TOURIST “Black Raven (Always Lost)” Single [Leeds, England Indie /Post-punk /Shoegaze trio]
Builds hypnotic and introspective moods, heavy melancholy and fearful pain, wrapped in a stroking and seductive haze of pleasantly abrasive sheets rife with enveloping voluptuous feedback, permeated by languorous and somber melodies and vaguely ecstatic lysergic vibes, as a heartfelt homage to equally familiar and timeless nostalgic aural sensations, albeit not disdaining some modern flairs.
- DAYFLOWER “Sonic” single [Leicester, England Indie Pop /Dream Pop /Shoegaze band]
popadelic combo coat their brittle, ecstatic dream pop with a swishing, abrasive yet caressing reverb-drenched, noisy wall of sound, as the band states ‘in their most fully realised form to date’
- DEAR AGENT “Vacant” from the debut EP “Private Eye” [Leipzig, Germany New Wave /Synth Wave/Post-Punk /Darkwave band]
Minimal, shadowy and brooding ambiences that reverb hypnotically through the pushy organic bleakness of bobbling basslines, crisp and terse percussions, sparse guitar shimmers, winding ice-chilled synths, and spectral vocals.”
- SADFIELDS “Irreversible” Single [ Mexico City, Mexico Indie-Rock /Post-Punk/ Shoegaze 3-piece]
playing in the atmospheric and moody interstice that operates between shadowy tormented post-punk and hazy sparkling shoegaze with vaguely The Church-esque psychedelic sheen
- PLAGUE PITS “The Beaches” from the debut EP “I” [Bern, Switzerland Industrial /Synth Wave /Post-Punk band]
implement a tense and disturbing diverse synthetic/organic concoction of Industrial, Post-punk and Synth Wave elements to carve hallucinatory, surrealistic nightmares of apocalyptic dread