October 27, 2008

Today's Hotness: The Video Nasties, The Answering Machine

>> We truly have no idea what is going on with The Video Nasties' new track, but we like it. The young, London-based quintet has just released a video -- embedded above -- for the song, "Have You Seen My Albatross?," which apparently is the lead track to a forthcoming EP; a full-length release is planned for next year. The opening of "Albatross" is raucous overdriven punk, and then there is a romantic confessional bridge that reminds us of the J. Geils Band's 80's chart pop. And then the song ends. Abruptly. It's kind of brilliant. The Video Nasties most recent set was Oct. 2007's Karl Blau EP. We weren't crazy about the less poppy direction of that material as compared to the band's earlier singles and demos. But something about the darkness and slight dementia of "Albatross" has us intrigued once again. Perhaps the two-year-old band can blaze a surprising trail away from the very good synth-pop sound of its early days. We still think that old stuff is really hard to beat, however. Here is an old, delightfully Yachts-reminiscent demo, "Plus One."

The Video Nasties -- "Plus One" -- Southern Demos
[right click and save as]
[buy Video Nasties music from Banquet Records UK right here]

>> So The Answering Machine has launched this new blog to detail its recording efforts, which began last Monday at a rural studio in North Yorkshire in England. The blog has all manner of details about the Manchester quartet's planned debut record and the music that will be on it. The set is titled Another City, Another Sorry, or at least that is its working title. The band has been recording all the basic tracks live, and will finish with overdubs. The Answering Machine in its first week in the studio recorded basic tracks for "It's Over, It's Over," "Lightbulbs," "Cliffer," and "Time." Fans will recognize many of those titles: "It's Over, It's Over" was a b-side to the dynamite "Silent Hotels" single released in 2007, "Lightbulbs" was also a single from last year, and "Time" was a demo the Strokes-idolizing foursome recorded with input from Tony Hoffer earlier this year that is now streaming at its MySpace casa.

>> Another new Johnny Foreigner track has surfaced over at YouTube. The phenomenal noise pop trio recently performed the track "This Trapeze Ball Thought Out" for London-based music publication The Fly in its courtyard somewheres. The sound quality isn't great, so what little we can tell is the track seems a bit forumulaic, with Kelly starting off the vocal and Alexei joining in after a bit while teasing harmonics out of an acoustic guitar. Kelly later drops a somewhat funky bass lick in the mix, but for the most part the recording doesn't show off the tune well. That said, it is notable that new material continues to slowly seep out from the band as it prepares to enter the studio next year to record the follow-up to this year's fireball full-length Waited Up Til It Was Light. Readers will recall we found last month a different new tune, "Ghost The Festivals," buried in the middle of this live set performed for Channel M based out of Manchester, England. And we think we sent this awesome YouTube clip for a new song whose title we do not yet know out on our Twitter feed a week or so ago. Perhaps our new motto should be "clicky clicky music: we watch all the Johnny Foreigner YouTubes so you don't have to." Anyhoo, Mr. Berrow said here earlier this month that the act will begin recording new material in February, and the band is expected to spend a significant amount of time touring the U.S. early next year as well.

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