Love X Stereo

Love X Stereo, the electro-dance-rock duo of Annie Ko and Toby Hwang from Seoul in South Korea have regularly featured over the past couple of years.

Love X Stereo - electro-dance-rock from South Korea

Love X Stereo

It seemed to be time to give an overview of sound of Love X Stereo as they released their latest single Hide And Seek for streaming just over an hour ago. Tracks range from synth-wave dreaminess to harder edged rock driven numbers.

The duo utilise the flexibility of the electronics to generate the space they are aiming to explore, to which the distinctive vocal always captures the mood of the music as guitar delivers sympathetic balance and due to their breadth of travel it is always a refreshing surprise to discover their new pieces. Love X Stereo always provide the listener with a minty wash, that leaves you feeling better for having been showered in the sounds. Easy on the ears as it may be, the duo deliver far from anodyne music as the iterations always contain a twist or two of their unique style.

Established in the local scene, Love X Stereo can also be found performing across the international stage and if they happen to land near you, well worth taking the time to catch one of their shows, where a drummer regularly is added to the line-up.

Hide and Seek – Single – Love X Stereo is available on iTunes.*

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Liquid – Keep It Away – Audio

The viscous-synth band Liquid from Thailand is new out of the blocks.

Liquid

Liquid

To surface in the past few hours is their first track – Keep It Away, which reminds of a lava lamp, with gently folding wax forming slowly evolving shapes.

This is not music to take on the run, rather to settle with and become lost in the viscosity of the sounds which melt into the brain.

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The Geeks

The Geeks from Quezon City in the Philippines is the retro-indie quartet of Kevin Tedd Felisco (Guitar), Mags Borbon (Bass), Brian Sangco (Drums) and Jam Lorenzo (Guitar / Vocals).

The Geeks - retro-indie from the Phillipines

The Geeks

Pitching their notes from the thinnest key on the six string, The Geeks take the audience on a journey of sound which recollects of the warmth of vinyl four track recordings, even in digital format. Their delivery finds the audience reaching for a skinny tie to accompany the mood. There is a luxuriant cosseted feeling that breezes into the room, like a warm summer sunset.

Whilst firmly with one foot in the ’60s, The Geeks don’t sound like a pastiche of sounds heard before, as they are able to take a style and invest it within a more focussed indie rock setting, giving the music a currency and relevance for the ’10s. The interspersing of individual notes and chords allows the quartet to provide easy to engage tracks with angles of intrigue, raising the banner from disposable pieces, to numbers that you want to come back to hear again.

Well worth adding to the ‘relax with this’ playlist.

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Pokemon Dad ( 宠物小精灵爸乐队 )

Pokemon Dad ( 宠物小精灵爸乐队 ) based in Shenzhen, China is the dreamy-rock quartet of Kevin Pinner (Drums), Paul Wade (Guitar / Vocals), Greg Merrell (Guitar/ Vocals) and Jonathan Howland (Bass).

Pokeman Dad ( 宠物小精灵爸乐队 ) - dreamy-rock based in China

Pokeman Dad ( 宠物小精灵爸乐队 )

The players, all originally from the USA formed Pokemon Dad about eighteen months ago in their new residency, delivering material which reflects of the broad influences of the band. Psychedelia, maths-rock and indie-rock coexist within the dreamy spires of sound. The quartet are able to creative expansive gaps in chords without loosing impetus, which gives the pieces their spacious nature as echoes and reverb flood the room.

Pokeman Dad are able to drive concepts of maths-angularity with the folding features of psychedelia effectively and the resulting out-put marks a difference of space. Guitars and voices are not used to add volume, rather paint the rich textures which gives the material its interest.

Track lengths are also highly variable from under two minutes to approaching six, but the listener is not left in a state of confusion as there is a thread of sound that gives Pokeman Dad its distinctive style, which is well worth investing time to get to know.

Their début LP Casual Males (随便男人) was released last month, to follow up an eponymous two track single that surfaced in January of last year.

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Casual Males – Pokemon Dad is available on iTunes.*

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Napolleon

From Bandung in Indonesia surface Bayu Andrianto (Guitar / Vocal), Valery Marsiano (Guitar), Aditya Tri Hanggono (Bass) and Muhammad Zainul Ilyas (Drums) who form the psychedelic Napolleon.

Napolleon - psychedelia from Indonesia

Napolleon

Heavy weaves of psychotropic substance descend around the ears as Napolleon combine ’60s rock with drone to layer the listener with darkly wefted sounds. The mind finds itself drifting along with the compositions as they meander around the room.

Reminders of concentrated Hawkwind pour out of the speakers as the instruments interplay to a submerged echoing vocal that enhances the out-of focus lens of the out-put. Napolleon is able to bring the disparate concepts together in a way that leaves the listener aware only of a continuum of sound. Their ability to coalesce the ranging ideas finds the audience mesmerically entranced and time looses all relevance as the quartet cloak the consciousness in an oppressive soundtrack that has the ability to simultaneously extend an arm of comfort.

A few years behind them, it was only on the 10th that they have released their début eponymous EP. Although only four tracks long, it will be no surprise to learn that the release extends to nearly twenty five minutes. Do find some time to dwell with Napolleon who add immensely to the pleasure of the day.

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Napolleon E.P – Napolleon is available on iTunes.*

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