Creator of one of Now Wave’s favourite albums of the last few years, Jessica Pratt is a young woman who seems to have an old soul. Her debut self-titled LP was compiled of songs recorded at home over the course of the previous five years, though have the time stained quality of tracks written in some long-forgotten golden age of songcraft.
Jessica Pratt – Back, Baby on YouTube
Fans of Joanna Newsome will feel at home with the intimacy of her recordings and with the glow of her golden voice. Some collected quotes from reviews of her record: “Pratt has one of those voices that remain stubbornly, elusively ageless” (Uncut, 8/10); “Pratt’s home-recorded songs are quiet gems” (Boston Globe, 8/10); “a worthy and quietly distinct heir of Baier, Bunyan, and Dalton’s homespun sound” (Pitchfork, 7.5/10).
Jessica Pratt – All Our Noise session on YouTube
Jessica Pratt’s second LP, On Your Own Love Again, is due for release this January and has already begun to pick up similarly impressive reviews – Q awarded 8/10 (a score echoed by Uncut and Clash magazine) and noted “the melodic charms are epic [as are] the lyrical insights about romantic disappointment universal.”
Tickets are £9 and are available through See Tickets.
Waxahatchee is the creative output of Kate Crutchfield, a 24 year old from Alabama. Kate has been in a couple of bands before (some with her twin sister, Allison) but it’s only really with Waxahatchee that things seem to have really come together – and they’ve come together really very quickly.Her debut under this latest moniker came in 2012. Recorded in her bedroom, American Weekend came out through Don Giovanni Records and garnered some critical acclaim – New York Times and Dusted magazine put it on their end of year lists.
Waxahatchee – Air on Soundcloud
Her sophomore effort,Cerulean Salt, finally earned Crutchfield the wider audience that her talents so richly deserved. The sleeper hit of the 2014, the anger and passion of the LP earned fans at Pitchfork (8.4, best new music), NME (8/10), Q (4/5), The Observer (album of the week), and Dazed & Confused (album of the month) – leading to Wichita records re-releasing the record in the UK. This is being followed up on April 6th with her third album, Ivy Tripp – a release of which Kate said, ““I think a running theme [of Ivy Tripp] is steadying yourself on shaky ground and reminding yourself that you have control in situations that seem overwhelming, or just being cognizant in moments of deep confusion or sadness, and learning to really feel emotions and to grow from that.”
Tickets are £10 and are available through Skiddle.
Given a Mac by his parents at the age of 12, Alex Giannascoli immediately started doing the first thing that felt natural to him – making songs on Garage Band. Spending a few years alternating between creating music that ranged from pop-rock (with his school band The Skin Cells) and goth-techno (with his sister) through to electronic jams that sounded “like Aphex Twin if he was stupid”, he finally found his groove as he entered his late teens and has since become one of the most quietly celebrated artists of the last few years. Putting out hundreds of self-written, self-recorded and self-produced tracks under the name Alex G, he built up a cult fanbase of people in love with his uniquely lo-fi, ethereal songs. Affected by things as diverse as Bob Dylan, The Band and – some critics claim – the Seinfeld theme tune – the tipping point came early in 2014 with the release of his album DSU on bandcamp.
Alex G – Hollow on YouTube
Immediately picked up by blogs and other tastemakers, labels quickly came knocking – and Alex found a greater audience for his uniquely excellent works through Orchid Tapes and Lucky Number. Hitting various end of year lists, DSU has been called “a fully-formed debut that demonstrates Giannascoli’s talent for a variety of genres, pop bedrock and his own idiosyncratic experiments” (Best Fit, 9/10), “careful yet effortless, passionate yet distant but above-all, wholly unique” (Drowned In Sound, 8/10) and “a masterful handling of mischievous lyrics and beautiful melodies” (Uncut, 8/10). Perhaps most fittingly, it Fader called Alex G “the internet’s secret best songwriter”. While 2014 was the year that he managed to find an audience more befitting of his tender genius, 2015 should see his acclaim further grow at the same rate his musical talents so quickly are.
Tickets are £7 and are available through See Tickets.
Formed out of high school in 2005 by Jonathan Rado and Sam France, Foxygen have consistently been a band that are difficult to pin down. Taking 7 years to release their first album Take The Kids Off Broadway (by which point they had added Shaun Fleming and Justin Nijssen to their line-up), their influences take in the full spectrum of out-there sounds, ranging from 60′s psyche, post-punk and new avant-garde – as well as almost everything in-between. Put out through influential independent label Jagjaguwar, All Music Guide awarded it 8/10, noting that it sounded like a “highway of endlessly firing synapses in someone elses’ brain”.
Foxygen – San Francisco on YouTube
Although their first release earned enormous acclaim, 2013′s We Are the 21st Century Ambassadors of Peace & Magic has become renowned as their masterpiece. Awarded Best New Music and an 8.4/10 by Pitchfork (who commented, “The more time you spend with Ambassadors, the more clearly that commitment and joy comes through”), approval was near universal from critics. The Fly perhaps got their decription closest to the magic encapsulated on the LP, calling it “a rewarding mixture of romance, wit and fantasy”.
Foxygen – How Can You Really on YouTube
Last year, Foxygen will be released their third record, called …And Star Power. Described by the band as “A svelte 82-minute run time of psych-ward folk, cartoon fantasia, soft-rock indulgences, D&D doomrock and paranoid bathroom stompers. A cinematic auditory adventure for speedy freaks, skull krunchers, abductees and misfits”, it quickly earned critical acclaim. The 405 awarded 8/10 and said “…And Star Power is not an album – it’s an out-of-body experience”, something backed up by DIY (8/10), Paste (8.8/10) and Mojo (8/10).
Tickets are £12.50 and are available through See Tickets.
Tickets are £12.50 and are available through See Tickets.
Formed in 2009 by Ripley Johnson (of Wooden Shjips fame) and Sanae Yamada, the twosome quickly earned critical acclaim with their Killing Time and Escape EPs. Filling in the spaces between psyche and ambient rock, they released their debut LP, Mazes, in 2011. Awarded 7.3/10 by Pitchfork, reviewer Zach Kelly noted that the album “…is an exercise in accessibility and concision, using familiar, melodic pop templates to support their drone and krautrock tendencies”. They followed this up a year later with Circles, a more mature yet experimental album that NME gave 8/10 and called “out of this world”.
Moon Duo – Animal on Soundcloud
Adding John Jeffrey to the band as a drummer, the now three-piece have announced their third album, The Shadow of the Sun – which this show will celebrate. The band have described the record as “[the] result of months of wrangling with a profound feeling of being unsettled — there are off-kilter dance rhythms, repetitive, grinding riffs, cosmic trucker boogies, and even an ecstatically pretty moment”. The Shadow of the Sun is due out on March 3rd through Sacred Bones records.
Tickets are £10 and are available through See Tickets.