UNDER THE RADAR: ‘THE UNDERSIDE OF POWER’: NEW VIDEO FROM ALGIERS.

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UNDER THE RADAR: ‘THE UNDERSIDE OF POWER’: NEW VIDEO FROM ALGIERS.

Algiers have had a hell of a couple of years. In 2015, they dropped a fiercely original debut album that found an uncharted sweet spot between industrial rhythm and noise, post-punk guitar skreeeee, and the smoldering intensity of Southern black gospel.

Wide acclaim, a few videos, and heavy touring followed, and the band’s core trio of singer/guitarist Franklin Fisher, bassist/synthesist Ryan Mahan, and guitarist Lee Tesche was augmented by touring (and now permanent) drummer Matt Tong, formerly of Bloc Party. In between all their rock labors, they wrote a second album, The Underside of Power, and WOW.

Though the new album isn’t due until June 23rd, the band released the first video from The Underside of Power —and it’s the album’s title track.

.dangerous minds

TWO ALBUMS, FOUR SINGLES: EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT CULT ELECTRONIC SYNTH BAND YAZOO

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TWO ALBUMS, FOUR SINGLES: EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT CULT ELECTRONIC SYNTH BAND YAZOO.

Yazoo/Yaz consisted of Alison “Alf” Moyet on vocals and Vince Clarke on synthesizer. The band formed in late 1981 after Clarke replied to an advert Moyet posted in Melody Maker looking for a “rootsy blues band.” Clarke had been the founder and chief songwriter at Depeche Mode. He quit that band because he was “fed up.” What with isn’t clear. What’s probable is that Clarke wanted to spend more time in the studio and develop his own unique electronic sound. For whatever reason, Clarke left Depeche Mode after writing most of the band’s first album and their first three hits “Dreaming of Me,” “New Life,” and “I Just Can’t Get Enough.”

t’s a good PR story that Moyet and Clarke didn’t know each other until that fateful ad in Melody Maker, but the truth was they had known of knew each other for quite some time. They both lived in Basildon and had both attended the same weekend music school as kids. Clarke had heard Moyet sing. He was more than impressed. Moyet has an incredible voice. And he was the keyboard wizard who wanted to do something different.

Clarke had the song “Only You.” He had offered it Depeche Mode as a farewell present but his ex-bandmates thought it wasn’t quite right as it sounded like something they’d already heard. They were wrong but it didn’t hamper their meteoric career. Moyet didn’t really like synthpop. Clarke was undeterred. He played her the track. Moyet sang the lyrics. Yazoo was formed.

According to Clarke, when they played “Only You” to Daniel Miller, the head of Mute Records, he seemed disinterested. But when the publishing company gave it a listen, they knew they had a hit. Yazoo was signed. Now a B-side was required. The only track Clarke and Moyet had was “Don’t Go” which was too good a song to fill out a B-side. They quickly recorded “Situation,” which was the first club hit by which Yaz/Yazoo became known in America.

The documentary on Yazoo : 2 Albums, 4 Singles and That was It tells you everything you need to know about Moyet and Clarke and their fast but highly successful and influential career.

.dangerous minds

MIXTAPE: Moody Fuckers by Little Records

On this episode of Moody Fuckers, we say goodbye to Chris Cornell (pictured), who passed away sometime this morning (18.05.2017). The man had such a unique voice, especially in the early days of Soundgarden when he would caterwaul atop his band’s a-melodic grunge. We’ll also hear from Low, Ministry, Depeche Mode, The Cure, Japan, Nick Cave, Slint, and others.

UNDER THE RADAR: Mogwai – “Coolverine”

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UNDER THE RADAR: Mogwai – “Coolverine”.

The band has announced a September 1st release for Every Country’s Sun, their ninth LP and first since the departure of guitarist John Cummings, who left in late 2015. Coming from Temporary Residence (Rock Action in the UK and Spunk in Australia), the album was produced by David Lawrence (The Flaming Lips, Mercury Rev). After sharing ideas via Dropbox, the band met up at Fridmann’s Tarbox Road Studios in Chautauqua County, NY to record the 11-track effort.

As a first listen, Mogwai has shared the album’s lead single, “Coolverine”.

.CoS