Sep, 13, 11
Smalltown America – Public Service Broadcast #10 Smalltown America, with the fundamental mindset consisting of “art over everything”, are celebrating their tenth anniversary with the release of a compilation showcasing the hugely varying talent that this label promotes and supports. With PSB #10, Smalltown America are like your ideal chef by providing the most diverse music menu they possibly could, each option being just as satisfying and wholesome as the other. Like rough n’ tumblin’ hardcore? Like reverberated and lo-fi songs? Like pop music? Hell, do you like music? Then this compilation is definitely worth a listen. Shallow Goals is a huge standout track within the compilation, demonstrating the floor-filling ability Mnemotechnic have as a band with their LCD Soundsystemlike basslines and rawness of The Stooges. Although attractive to the electro fan’s ear, Mnemotechnic have an appeal that is universal to most music listeners. To me, this is perfect pop music and a well deserved step forward from the Death From Above scene of a few years ago. Another massive highlight from this ‘Broadcast’ is the new unique style General Fiasco seem to be defining for themselves as they return to touring in 2011. Their track, The Bottom, as yet unreleased is likely to be a very popular move for the group. Thanks to the atmospheric production of the song, the quirky and folky guitar sit perfectly within the vast and echo-drenched foreground. On the completely other side of the musical spectrum, Faces by Event Horses is gritty and hard hitting (and both in the best way possible). Cutting all crap necessary, the song clocks just barely over two minutes long and is proof that Northern Ireland has a very booming and talented hardcore scene that’s about to arise – something that should have a very close eye kept upon it.
Event Horses are definitely a delight to one that may listen to the likes of Glassjaw, Throwdown or even Black Flag. Not to say that Event Horses are copying these bands’ game, but they are definitely worthy enough to be playing in the same ballpark as them. Blacklisters are also lenient on the hardcore side of things. Their song King Prick sits nicely on the same disc as Event Horses but definitely draws from a lot more varied influences. With drilling avant-garde guitar playing that wouldn’t be out of place on an older Sonic Youth album, this Leeds band are creating their own blend of hardcore and sure as hell letting everybody know that their stamp is on it. Other bands that feature on this special release by Smalltown Records include United Fruit, Ram’s Pocket Radio, Daily Life, Vvolves, Our Krypton Sun and Battle For Paris. When writing this, I had no intention of giving any review of the songs or the bands featured on the broadcast – but instead raise some attention towards the fantastic label that is Smalltown Records. It‘s not frequent that a label will release compilations of such high quality and sign, support or promote such a varied and promising group of bands. As the label is approaching its own tenth anniversary, if you ever wanted to be part of something large and promising – now is the time to check out the bands featured on this mix. Launch show dates and details for Public Service Broadcast #10 are as follows: LAUNCH SHOWS 18th September – Sandinos Back Bar, Derry – Our Krypton Son 23rd September – Captains Rest, Glasgow – United Fruit 23rd September - ‘Culture Night’, Oh Yeah Centre, Belfast – STA PSB10 Listening Party 24th September – Ma Kellys, Ballymoney – Axis Of / More Than Conquerors / Event Horses 1st October – Nations of Shopkeepers, Leeds – Blacklisters / Talons 1st October – Buffalo Bar, Cardiff – VVOLVES 5th November – Le Cube à Ressort, Brest, France – Mnemnotechic Listening Party