September 23, 2008

Today's Hotness: Manhattan Love Suicides, This Town Needs Guns

The Manhattan Love Suicides -- Burnt Out Landscapes
>> When we last checked in on British noise-pop dynamos The Manhattan Love Suicides here in April, the Leeds-based foursome had just issued its Clusterf*ck 7" EP. And at the time we advised folks to watch EMusic and wait for the four songs to show up in the handy MP3 format, because digitizing vinyl is wicked frustrating, yeh. After that we forgot all about the EP until today, when a MySpace alert notifified us that the band had just uploaded a new track from a recently issued compilation titled Burnt Out Landscapes. The compilation -- which was issued by Magic Marker June 2 or Aug. 12, depending on which release date you choose to believe -- is available at EMusic right here, and better still it appears to include all the cuts from Clusterf*ck. All told, Burnt Out Landscapes features 27 tracks including radio sessions and alternate versions including the divine cut collection-closer "Life In Vain." The Manhattan Love Suicides are giving away one of the tracks, "Heat And Panic," for free at its MySpace longhouse. We'll save you the trip and post it below, but definitely hit the link to EMusic to grab Burnt Out Landscapes, because the dozen tracks we've heard so far (damn EMusic account doesn't roll over for another five days) are entirely compelling.

The Manhattan Love Suicides -- "Heat And Panic" -- Burnt Out Landscapes
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[buy Manhattan Love Suicides music from EMusic right here]

>> Time was Pink Floyd's Animals was our favorite record. We were probably 12. We can't remember the year exactly, but we can recall a family vacation to Florida and having to share a double bed with an older brother who did not fully appreciate the awesome air guitar we were unleashing before falling asleep at night with the aforementioned record blasting into our skull via a third- or fourth-generation cassette Walkman. Anyway, this paragraph is not about that record. It's about the Oxford, England quartet This Town Needs Guns, which releases its own record titled Animals in the UK Oct. 13. The set, which we think is the first full-length release from the quartet, contains 13 tracks named after various mammals (and a crocodile, and possibly a marsupial). Faithful readers may recall we posted the track "Baboon" right here in July. The label Big Scary Monsters has made available a second preview MP3 titled "Chinchilla." The cut bolsters our appreciation of the band, which incorporates the exciting guitar work of erstwhile American indie acts American Football and Owls into its own sturdy modern emo framework. "Chinchilla" also touts a punchy drum beat in the verse that seems to constantly threaten to slip off the beat. It's a very enjoyable way to spend four minutes, and we highly recommend this track.

This Town Needs Guns -- "Chinchilla" -- Animals
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[pre-order Animals from Big Scary Monsters right here]

>> Matablog has posted here the tracklist and cover art for the recently announced Belle And Sebastian compilation The BBC Sessions, which will be released by Matador Nov. 18. The set features two discs, the first concatenating BBC radio sessions recorded during the bands "golden age" (in our opinion), 1996-2001. The second disc, dubbed Live In Belfast, contains selections from a December 2001 live date in the nominal city. Personal favorites are strongly represented, with "Seymour Stein," "Sleep The Clock Around" and "Like Dylan In The Movies" appearing on the first disc, and the devastating "The Model" and "The Boy With The Arab Strap" appearing on the second disc. Matablog promises more information and some preview MP3s, so we'll keep our eyes peeled. And maybe we'll watch that Belle And Sebastian DVD from five or six years ago again soon.

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