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   Thursday, July 08, 2004  
London, Bristol, Brighton, er, Hay-on-Wye..are you ready? He-r-e's Joanna! Yes, seeing is (surely) believing as the singularly captivating Ms. Newsom makes her solo UK debut next month. You've gotta be there, basically:

Aug 16 London, 12 Bar
17 Bristol St Bonaventures
18 Brighton, Komedia
21 Hay-on-Wye, Green Man Festival

Words like 'gorgeous', 'Ryan Adams and Gillian Welch' and 'acoustic tunification' are attaching themselves to Aussie duo The Small Knives' debut, Rain on Tin. One of the sample tracks provided by Candle Records is called Hardin your heart which gently hits you over the head with another clue. If you're tempted, this blog recommends retailer Half A Cow (AUS$25/£9.75 inc. p&p, super-prompt service)...
The Small Knives | Candle Records | Half A Cow

Nightwalking, track 2 on the new Unbunny album Snow tires gets pretty close to the sound of Slowreader's fine debut; not that they're that far apart but the title track drops mid-point between Tracker and M. Ward; echoes of Matthew Sweet, Mull Historical Society, etc. If an album kind of sounds like half the stuff you've been listening to for the past five years it's gotta be a straightforward thumbs-up, right? No, not quite. There's not a lot wrong with this record and reallyrather is happy to have it. But whatever it is that compels the urging of others to chase it down, that's missing. The quality's consistent (verging on sameyness); there's nothing you'd skip but no track especially stands out either. It's pop for a rainy afternoon. Distinctly Lennon-flavoured in places, Nothing comes to rest comes on a bit like Neil Young remaking Jealous guy. If that's your territory, it's available here...

Unbunny were aided & abetted on the album by Paul Chastain of Velvet Crush who it's rumoured will accompany Matthew Sweet to London in September...

Suburban Kids With Biblical Names. Maybe in Swedish that translates into something cool-sounding, like the open-faced acoustic pop Johan & Peter are offering up under that moniker. Actually there's nothing to buy as yet, just a pair of taster tracks ahead of a debut EP. Love will (which puts the chorus melody from Jacko's Human nature to rather better use) is particularly worthy of your attention...
SKWBN | Labrador | Love will mp3

And while they may have a crap name, at least it's spelt correctly. No excuses for home boy Declan Bennett. At the moment it's merely birthplace affinity which prompts reallyrather to bring 'acoustic soulfolkster' SumLadFromCov to the table [site]. Hopefully the music's more inspired than the all-too-dismally representative name. Several chances for Londoners to find out next month:

Aug 2 Big Note@The Comedy Pub, Oxendon Street, London
4th The Easycome Acoustic Club, The Ivy House, 40 Stuart Road SE15
5th The Bedford, 77 Bedford Hill, Balham
11th The Grey Horse, 46 Richmond Road, Kingston
17th Aug, 12 Bar, Denmark Street, London

New edition of Comes With A Smile scheduled to hit the streets today - Sufjan, Innocence Mission, The Last Town Chorus amongst those interviewed & on disc...

'The beauty of this effort is that there are several radio friendly songs yet nothing calculated in the song writing. It is sincere material presented without pretension or overly slick production.' Which is just how we like it, no? Oh yes...
   posted by SMc at 4:12 AM |