Saturday, 3 November 2018

A few lovely things: Michael O, Art Sick, Jan Bradley & Knit Separates

Michael O (Olivares of pop heroes The Mantles) recently released a fine new 7" on the dependably ace Fruits & Flowers. The second song on the A-side is 'Haunted'; a shy-voiced delight with a pleasingly hesitant lead guitar which spirals upwards in a flurry of Paisley patterned petals. Shame I didn't post this on Hallowe'en, eh?

Before Wednesday this week I hadn't heard of Oakland, California's Art Sick. By Thursday morning I was obsessed with their adorable brand of Chickfactor-friendly guitar pop and was cheerfully breaking my hard and fast (yeah, right!) no vinyl from the US rule for fear that to dither might mean missing out on securing one of only 100 copies pressed of their debut 7".  As with the Michael O single, the song that I've played the most (on bandcamp, the vinyl hasn't arrived yet) isn't the lead track, 'Going Down', which I do love (sweet vocals, handclaps and a Tiger Trap-style rumble - *swoon*) but 'No Clue'. It's a real heart-stealer that would've made a lovely addition to the magical Four Letter Words discography. Get on it!

Speaking of songs with handclaps, a recent soul purchase has them in spades. Jan Bradley's 'Back In Circulation' has led to a serious amount of kitchen dancing of late (sorry downstairs neighbours!). Sure it's heavily indebted to The Supremes, but Jan's voice is so charming and the rhythm so perfect that it's nigh on impossible not to move when it plays. Now, when's the next soul night in Glasgow?

The Knit Separates were active in the years 1996-2001. They existed entirely without my knowledge which is a shame as they were peculiarly wonderful. Thankfully, for us latecomers there's a new cassette retrospective on Brave Mysteries Recording Co.. There's nothing I can write about The Knit Separates' music that would be more insightful than the wee paragraph on the 'Dream No Evil' release page. It's ideal music for listening to on dusk-time walks round Glasgow University's deserted cloisters.

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