Originally the solo project of Matt Mondanile (who is otherwise best known for being part of Real Estate), Ducktails has spiralled from being a solo endeavour recorded in the family tool shed to being a revered four piece. Now joined by Luka Usmiani, Alex Craig and Samuel Franklin, Mondanile and Ducktails have recently put out their fifth album, St. Catherin. Their second release for Domino Recordings (after 2013’s incredible The Flower Lane), the latest record feels more expansive and polished than the project had ever been before – which seems to have contributed to acclaim across the board, with Wire (8/10), DIY (8/10) and The Observer (8/10) among those who were effusive about the LP. Drowned in Sound (8/10) were equally glowing, noting “This is comfortably the best effort from Matt Mondanile to date. A tribute to the power of not just belief but also the idea that patience can be your best weapon in terms of creating your best work.”
Support comes from Jaakko Eino Kalevi and Beaty Heart
For years, Jaakko Eino Kalevi was a cult figure in his hometown of Helsinki. Working part-time as a tram driver, Jaakko released a slew of material before eventually being picked up by Weird World for his first international release – something which has exponentially increased his following. His label describe his work as “softly psychedelic pop [blending] funk and folk in an intriguing and highly satisfying manner” – however, the critics have been a limit more floral, with DIY describing his eponymous latest LP as “layer upon layer of vocal, groove, and percussion… a reminder that pop can be both for your head and your feet”.
Formed in 2010 at Goldsmiths in London, Beaty Heart spent years as darlings of the blog world before finally putting out their debut album Mixed Blessings last year. It was well worth the wait, with Best Fit describing the record as “a kaleidoscopic haze of joyful percussive beats and bouncy vocals” in their 7.5/10 review.