March 27, 2008

Today's Hotness: Seb Roberts, The Anwering Machine, Spinto Band

Seb Roberts
>> Heretofore you probably had little idea what you would be doing April 14. Frankly neither did we, until we received an email this evening from Spoilt Victorian Child Records. You may recall the label issued the stunning debut EP from Texas-shoegaze behemoth Ringo Deathstarr last year. Well on the aforementioned date the rising label will issue Seb Roberts' Exit Strategy. Mr. Roberts was born in Canada, has apparently lived and rocked in Baltimore, and now splits time between Hamburg, Germany and Japan. Along the way he's released nine records under almost as many different monikers, which we suppose makes Exit Strategy his 10th? The two songs we've heard from the set (posted below) are sinewy, spare and fragmented rock numbers that slap together spoken word, feedback, forthright grooves and profanity into a strangely arresting product that would have played very well at the goth/industrial all-ages dance night we frequented in our youth. We hear similarities to Wall Of Voodoo, Police drummer Stewart Copeland's Klark Kent side project, and "Jesus Built My Hotrod"-era Ministry. There's a palpable Fall thing going on as well. Seriously. Seb Roberts' Exit Strategy will be issued digitally and on CD in the UK and Europe, and North Americans should be able to find the record via ITunes and Amazon. As an added inducement, both the digital and tangible releases come with full artwork and a link to download an additional album of improvised instrumentals called NO Sense, NO Feeling performed by Roberts and Tokyo-based psych unit NO.

Seb Roberts -- "U.S. Out Of N.Y." -- Exit Strategy
Seb Roberts -- "Man-Whore, Fashion Hag, and Former Neighbor" -- Exit Strategy
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[watch this page for your chance to buy this record]

>> Streaming radio outfit WOXY has finally posted here the March 13 live session recorded with indie pop upstarts The Answering Machine. Perhaps because the band has yet to release a full-length, the Manchester-based quartet still seems very much like a little secret. But The Answering Machine sounds huge in this WOXY session. They tear through a version of the superlative single "Silent Hotels" and the guitars sound bigger than on the recording, and the drums doubly so. The second track, "Your Father's Books" is new to us and very promising, particularly in the breakdown section. Suddenly this band is outgrowing it's lockstep dance rhythms a bit, and it is exciting to hear. Download the whole session at the link below.

The Answering Machine -- WOXY Lounge Act Session 3/13/2008
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>> We remember reading about the making of Spinto Band's new video "Summer Grof" [link] at some point, perhaps when we were researching the goings-on of the band in the fall around the time we saw them play Bowery Ballroom with Los Campesinos! and Johnny Foreigner. Anyway, on paper the concept seemed a little flat, but the clip is actually really fun, appealing as it does to the universal joys of the water balloon fight and food fight. And the clip's black and white rendering dovetails nicely with the nostalgic vibe that permeates Spinto Band's music like smoke in an old carpet. The Delaware-based septet play T.T. The Bear's in Cambridge, Mass. Friday, April 4, and if we can fit it in after an earlier commitment (meaning if we can keep awake) we hope to see the set. As we reported here about six weeks ago, Spinto Band is poised to release its eighth full-length, Moonwink, later this year.

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