We welcome another new international addition to the Shelflife family, Picnic, who are one of Estonia’s brightest groups. To celebrate the occasion, the band recorded this special limited edition 7″ featuring their take on two of the most beautiful pieces of music ever written — “We’ve Only Just Begun” by Roger Nichols and Paul Williams and “Say a Little Prayer” by Burt Bacharach and Hal David.
Picnic formed in 2006 by Marju Taukar, Andres Soosaar and Rivo Jaervsoo. Marju and Andres were previously in 90s indie band Dreamphish and Rivo is a current member of Seksound labelmates Bad Apples. Picnic released their debut album Winter Honey in 2010 and have been steadily working on their follow-up to be released later this year. They are clearly influenced by classic shoegaze and dreampop and while there is something vastly familar about their sound, it never feels overly nostalgic in any way. They add their own soaring signatures with unconventional instrumention and modern uses of electronics, all while standing firmly grounded to pure pop structure and melody.
We’ve Only Just Begun is limited to 100 copies in the US and is a co-release with Seksound in Estonia. Coming May 29.
The Proctors have had a busy start to 2012 already. They’re fresh off their London Popfest performance and are now heading to Madrid. In the meantime, they put together a new digital single “I Need To Tell You,” which also includes one of our favorite tracks “Perfect World.” The single is a teaser for their new album, which is slated to come out on Shelflife later this year. You can download it now for free just by entering in your e-mail address. Enjoy!
Here is The Holiday Crowd’s brand new music video for their single “Pennies Found.” The video, directed by visual artist Matthew Sitler, was filmed entirely on his iPhone.
I can’t believe it’s already mid-December and already time for top 10s of 2011. This year has been a complete blur. In putting this post together, I completely forgot about so much music that came out this year. I’m sure it’s no surprise that I’ve reformatted this list numerous times. I have left out some previous top 10 favorites (Digitalism, Washed Out, Korallreven, among others) as their records all kind of lost their spark for me.
Top honors this year goes to “Weathering” by Epic45. I absolutely adore this record! On first listen it was a bit of a leap for me to take it all in. I guess I was looking for more pop songs and an extension of “In All The Empty Houses” (2009), but instead “Weathering” was something entirely different. A record I had to digest slowly and really one that I spent a lot of time with throughout the year. It’s so rare these days, at least for me, to find an album that I can have such a relationship with. “Lesser Matters” by The Radio Dept. might have been the last time. I wouldn’t call the album a “grower,” but rather one you grow with.
As for the podcast, it may not be an absolutely accurate reflection of my top songs of 2011, but more so highlighting ones I still enjoy (aka that I’m not sick to death with). Oh and as usual Shelflife releases are exempt from my lists. You may notice two Ringo Deathstarr songs are included. Well… I just couldn’t decide between the two. I could have also included at least three Veronica Falls tracks, but I didn’t. Can anyone listen to “Midnight City” anymore without picturing this guy singing it? The SPC ECO track at the end just came out, but it seems an appropriate way to end this. Happy Holidays!
Top 10 releases of 2011
Top 5 EPs of 2011
Podcast #5 – Top 20 songs of 2011
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The debut single “Two Rings” from the Ice Choir is officially released today in the UK/EUR through Yesboyicecream and in the US through Shelflife. Here’s the official video for the track directed by Ryan Louie.
Days celebrated their very first US performance this last weekend at the NYC Popfest. The show was simply incredible. As a bonus, they were invited to do a live studio session and interview for Grey Skies at WNYU. Thanks Brian for setting that up. The entire session is available for download below. Enjoy!
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