Witch Fever have today announced Congregation, their debut album, which is set to be released on October 21st via Sony’s Music For Nations. Pre-order here. The announcement also comes alongside the release of the title track “Congregation” and an accompanying music video.
Listen to the new single below!
Speaking about the album lead singer Amy Walpole said;
“As our first album we’re really excited to just get it out there. We feel that it’s a step above what we’ve done before as we had a chance to experiment with sound and structure. It was our first opportunity to explore writing a body of work which was challenging but has been so rewarding! It pushed our creative process because we also had to think about the songs sitting side by side on an album! We tried to break out of what makes a typical ‘witch fever’ song whilst still being true to what makes our sound what it is.”
A press release said about the album:
Congregation captures the 4 piece at their heaviest and most challenging yet. Produced by Pigs x7’s Sam Grant at Blank Studios in Newcastle, the album’s 13-tracks incorporate everything from sludge to new wave without lingering in one sound for too long – as a result, every track is built like a brick house – strong riffs and rhythm, but plenty of space within.
Formed by frontman Theo Zhykharyev in 2017 initially as a bedroom project, Powerplant are a five-piece synth-punk collective based in London. The last show I ended up seeing before THE EVENT was Folly Group, Legss, and Powerplant at The Old Blue Last in March 2020. Shortly afterward, they became a band of great comfort to me during several lockdowns, especially periods where it felt like they became my own soundtrack to derealisation. It’s not exactly easy to pinpoint why their sound works, but the militant midi drums coupled with angular guitar riffs alongside the piercing retro synths evident in almost all of their work is a compelling combination. Think of The Coneheads but blended with the original DOOM soundtrack and an extra sense of dread. Zhykharyev spoke to us about how they created their sound, playing in Benidorm and their upcoming Dungeons and Dragons-inspired campaign soundtrack.
What was your life like between the release of your albums Dogs See Ghosts and People In The Sun?
Simpler times! I was doing my film BA and getting into cool new music and doing PP stuff half ironically for my own pleasure. But I guess over the years I kinda figured I want to do music more rather than film, you could probably tell with the growing effort in each project. But besides, in those two years, I want to say I met people that are my true friends to this day and very important occurrences happened in my life that I hold dearly that I guess opened my eyes to what existence really is or could be and what people are like?
I’ve noticed over the past few years how many different types of bills you’ve ended up on. What is the connection between Powerplant and the wider London hardcore scene?
Lloyd, who drums the drum, played/plays in many hc bands and we got onto many bills through that I suppose. But it’s probably mostly through friends putting on gigs and people wanting to have fun – I don’t remember! Lloyd being such a fast violent drummer definitely helps too! I think we are way less clean live, so it works.
What equipment do you use to deliver the dungeon synth sound?
It’s all MIDI! Well, like 85% or something. Which was very fun to work with, I used to be anti-MIDI and anything that’s not an audio recording in Logic. All this choice is fun but it will be the death of me. Plugin wise, I used Roland Sound Canvas that I heard in Daggerfall. It’s just a perfect early cheap midi that sounds amazing with a wobble, and another big plugin was Arturia’s DX7. Good sounds there. Harland Steed (President Evil, SMTB) did tape reruns at CORPUS and that made it not flat and computer sounding. It rocks!!!
I’ve noticed that a lot of your music has a sense of unknown nostalgia. Did you have any specific influences from your childhood that inspire your music?
I listened to 50 Cent when I was a kid, so at the moment probably I want to say no haha. But who knows what the future shall bring – let’s find out.
How was your recent show abroad in Benidorm?
It was a great time – it was a crazy time! Lots of good people there – good sound on stage! First time in Europe for me in a long time and half the city is like little England with every other place called ‘The Bulldog’ or ‘Churchill’. There was a 1 euro pizza slice place and a strip with sketchy sex shows. We swam and walked around – it was really good! Thank you Paloma!
Tell us about this upcoming album and role-playing adventure module?
I kinda properly got into ‘Dungeon Synth Archives’ on YT in late 2020 and got super into it. I tried making some songs – it kinda happened and I just thought it would be an odd/funny thing to commit to. It was supposed to be like a one-two instrument thing originally and seemed like a good contrast with punk PP stuff I was working on that was all too many tracks. However, as time went on and got more serious I got about this I ended up complicating it more etc. ‘Stump Soup’ is looking to be 18 tracks and just under an hour. I think in the end it’s somewhere in between DS and comfy synth, so egg synth of comfy synth I dunno.
I don’t remember exactly where the idea to make an adventure module came from – maybe Cam suggested it, just like the whole DS album thing, but I’m not sure! I named the second track Herziegger’s Mansion after a homebrew DnD campaign I wrote, so maybe that went someplace afterward. In my head, it works very well as there isn’t much context to songs besides the track name, and the campaign is there to attach a personal story/relationship to songs, should be fun! I always wanted to print some stuff and keep it silly, so I’m excited about it all! My good friend and DM Tom Terry is doing most of the writing. I Gotta do it. But I guess throughout the whole thing main inspiration to actually do it all was the SFDD album and the quote/review from the Bandcamp release. It’s just perfect, it’s everything. And doing the whole instrumental album thing kinda makes sense because there was an instrumental skit on almost every release.
I saw that Powerplant was mentioned on /mu/thread the other day, how did that make you feel?
It made me smile. The weirder the community the better, and I guess that’s just as odd as it gets. And if people are mentioning stuff on there I guess it’s somewhat really working. Used to get DS charts from /mu/ last year.
Finally, what do you hope to do with Powerplant in 2022?
Man, at this point I just want something to do, I just want to have fun.
Witch Fever have today shared a new Salem witch trials meets cbeebies style music video for “Bully Boy”, a single of their new EP Reincarnate which was released at the end of Octover via Sony’s Music For Nations. A vinyl version of the EP will be released on Friday 3rd December, with a in-store performance at Rough Trade East this Saturday 4th December as well as signing. Pre-order HERE or tickets HERE which come with the vinyl.
On the single, singer Amy says,
“We wrote Bully Boy after we played a gig where the guitarist from one of the support bands shouted at us on stage to take our tops off. For us Bully Boy is our combined rage about these experiences funnelled into one track. The alternative music scene is still very much a ‘boys club’ leaving female and non-binary people vulnerable to misogynistic and sexist behaviour, and we are always challenging this. Bully Boy is cathartic, and empowering in its anger.”
She continues, “The video is different to anything we’ve done before! The lyrics are quite brutal so we thought it’d be fun to turn it on it’s head and create something that on the surface is colourful and fun but has a dark undercurrent. Sam O’Leary, the director and editor, did a sweet job and never fails to capture exactly what the song needs! Sam and Roma Allenby created the concept together and hit the nail on the head!”
Black Country, New Road have detailed their new album Ants From Up There, set to be released on February 4th 2022 via Ninja Tune. This is the follow up to this years debut LP For The FirstTime which was nominated for the Mercury Prize.
The band have also shared new single “Chaos Space Marine”, which has been played on the bands recent UK tour. It’s “the best song we’ve ever written” says frontman Isaac Wood about the new single. We threw in every idea anyone had with that song. So the making of it was a really fast, whimsical approach – like throwing all the shit at the wall and just letting everything stick”.
Listen to the new single below!
Ants From Up There will be available on Deluxe 4LP box set*, Collector’s edition bronze 2LP [d2c only], Limited edition blue 2LP, Standard black 2LP, Deluxe 2CD*, Standard CD, Cassette and Digital formats.
Intro Chaos Space Marine Concorde Bread Song Good Will Hunting Haldern Mark’s Theme The Place Where He Inserted the Blade Snow Globes Basketball Shoes
The band have also announced a new run of UK/ IE tour dates which will also include their biggest headline show to date at The Roundhouse in London.
Fans who pre-order any format of “Ants From Up There” from the Black Country, New Road store, their Bandcamp page and the Ninja Tune shop, will be able to gain access to the pre-sale for the 2022 UK headline tour dates.
TV Priest have shared “Lifesize“, their first new single since the release of debut album Uppers. The new single will be available as a 7″ single as part of Sub-Pop’s Singles Club Vol.6 which has previously included John Waters, Jeff Tweedy, Duma, LIDS, Washed Out, Hand Habits, BNH Deluxe, Porridge Radio, Sheltered Workshop Singers, and more. Join the club here.
Drinkwater and Co. continue to tell tales of disillusion through their vibrant and ever captivating storytelling backed by searing guitars and an undying groove. The disdain that Drinkwater sings towards the stereotypical idea of man is intoxicating in its ugliness. “Justice is cruelty in another language / And wisdom is fear” he sings as the guitars wail and you can’t help cling onto every syllable as he preaches of much needed understanding.
Speaking on the track frontman Charlie Drinkwater said:
“‘Lifesize’ is about the worship of the ‘strong man’ image often present in our political and cultural discourse. One where the patriarchal underpinnings of our society and political structure goes unchallenged. After a particularly grueling year, when people have looked to leaders for strength, we’ve found instead empty gestures and contempt. (‘Talk like a salesman, walks like the Pope.’) We don’t need more macho bravado; society needs empathy and compassion.”
Bristol-based post-punk 3-piece Kickboy have shared their debut single “Portland from Streetview“. KickBoy are Jamie Danish on vocals and bass, Chris Robbs on guitar and backing vocals and Owen Ranson on drums.
Kickboy are kicking straight into action on their debut single, with a swagger that gets funkier on every listen. Their storytelling flow rolls and shifts over each riff with an alluring pull. You can’t help but latch onto every word and movement as this band creates punk with a pop allure. Their flurried frenzy of breakdowns and outbursts only become more intense and explosive as the track progresses.
Witch Fever have shared new single “In Birth“, the latest single from their debut EP Reincarnate, set to be released on October 29th. The new track follows on from previously released “Reincarnate” and “In The Resurrect“.
Witch Fever continue to intoxicate on the new single through chugging sabbath-worthy riffs and propelling drums. They address the torment of patriarchal structures and the predatory behaviour that is born out of them with an eye to the wind. “You praised me / Undressed me / Telling me I was your wet dream” remarks singer Amy on the chorus, before declaring that she’ll “Eat you alive / Tear your bones head to toe just to see what’s inside”. They’re here to tear the establishment down and they’re doing it in explosive style.
Speaking on the new single singer Amy Walpole:
“‘In Birth’ has been kicking around for a little while now, so it’s nice to finally exorcise it into the world. Whilst the theme of a lot of our songs is reclamation, empowerment and catharsis, it’s definitely far more vulnerable. It felt right to juxtapose this with big chuggy riffs and noisy, cymbal heavy drums. The power that Alisha, Alex and Annabelle create on this track accompanies the anger in my lyrics perfectly.”
She continues, “We created and directed the video with Sam O’Leary and it’s a tongue in cheek way of presenting the narrative. We wanted something camp and fun, but still powerful and angry. Plus, everything’s better with a bucket of fake blood!”
Brighton-based 4-piece ĠENN have released new single “Catalyst”, their first new music since releasing their Liminal EP earlier in the year. The new single also comes alongside a new live version of previously released “Feel”.
Acting as an anthem for political awareness, “Catalyst” sees the band combine classic punk motions with an undying groove. The repeated phrase of “Stay awake” displays the bands urgency for recognition. You can hear the full blown emotion in vocalist Leona Farrugia’s despairing vocals. A call to arms for change.
Speaking about the new single vocalist Leona Farrugia said:
“The word ‘revolution’ has often been used in more grand ways throughout collective history, but ‘Catalyst’ started as more of a personal rediscovery, realising that everyday is a ‘work in progress’ in order to wake up from the coma of tradition.”
“In previous years, I understood the importance of moving forwards, doing my best to cast off the shackles of the past. In this sense, the song acts as a way to remember that change starts from within.”
Mrley, the pseudonym of 23 year-old Marley Rutherford, today shares his debut single, “My Side Of London“. Growing up in South-East London, Rutherford’s debut single is a testament to his home ground.
The track is raw in both its aesthetics and vocals. Rutherford makes a declaration of passion for the streets he grew up on, “They wish they were from my side of London / That’s why the speak like my side of London” he proclaims as he addresses gentrification and prioritisation of street culture. Backed by a potent motion of grunge heavy guitars, Mrley fuses together elements of punk and rap to create a sound that bursts with untampered energy.
Speaking on the track and video Mrley said:
“The internet and social media means people are no longer glancing at life through the lens their environment provides. It’s now fashionable to be “struggling”, you have kids raised in Kensington running around pretending to be kids from Kennington.
It’s progress that people of all backgrounds are being brought together through the love of art but I think it’s important to let the people whose profits are thriving from street culture know that “I’m not your something, your something to play with”.”
Today, Parquet Courts announce their new album, Sympathy For Life, out October 22nd on Rough Trade Records, and share the first single “Walking at a Downtown Pace.” Pre-order here. The new single also comes alongside an accompanying music video directed by acclaimed New York City street photographer Daniel Arnold.
Speaking about the album co-frontman Austin Brown said:
“Wide Awake! was a record you could put on at a party. Sympathy For Life is influenced by the party itself.” Historically, some amazing rock records have been made from mingling in dance music culture – from Talking Heads to Screamadelica. Our goal was to bring that into our own music. Each of us, in our personal lives, has been going to more dance parties. Or rather, we were pre-pandemic, which is when this record was made.”
“Most of the songs were created by taking long improvisations and moulding them through our own editing. The biggest asset we have as artists is the band. After 10 years together, our greatest instrument is each other. The purest expression of Parquet Courts is when we are improvising.”
The band has also announced Feel Free – Sympathy For Life, Visualised, which will be a livestream of 11 videos, encompassing the entire record, which will air two days before the album’s release on October 20th. The band enlisted the effort of 11 amazing visual artists from around the world to create a completely unique experience for fans who buy tickets to Feel Free – Sympathy For Life, Visualised. Purchase tickets here.