Admirers of Mac DeMarco’s rowdy pop, followers of Ariel Pink’s heterodoxy, fan clubs of Ezra Furham’s smile, all those who miss the word “nerd” (and maybe even still use it), please go to the new meeting point: Hawthorne, south of Los Angeles. Because this Californian enclave is now not only the town of the Beach Boys, but also the place in the world where Cuco’s little heart beats. Thanks to one self-released EP per year since 2016, Omar Banos has, from his bedroom, connected with the wakefulness of post-millennials worldwide. And although he applies the lo-fi mise en place to whatever genre he is cooking up (sunny-side-up, hip-hop, psychedelic soup, a mariachi picadillo in honour of his Mexican roots…), when going live, he brings out the Sunday crockery: up to nine indie big band musicians amplify the great Cuco’s small songbook.
Lately, the cosmopolitan New York rapper Theophilus London and the Tame Impala main man Kevin Parker have been putting in a lot of work together. They’re calling their project Theo Impala, and they dropped three new songs (one of which features Ariel Pink) on Beats 1 Radio. They unveil the video for “Only You,” their faithfully slick cover of a 1984 synth-disco track from the Nigerian musician Steve Monite.
The final day of Primavera Sound 2018 at the Parc del Fòrum won’t disappoint, charged as it is with unmissable concerts like the much-anticipated return to the stages of the UK’s Arctic Monkeys, led by Alex Turner, who, after releasing a second album in 2016 with his other project The Last Shadow Puppets, seems to be ready to get back to his Monkeys, who haven’t released a new album since 2013’s hit ‘AM’; back in Barcelona after killing it in Sant Jordi Club when she made her concert debut in the city back in October, it’s New Zealand pop star Lorde, with her second LP, ‘Melodrama’, one of the best albums of 2017; charismatic hip hop star A$AP Rocky comes back to the festival with his latest album set for a 2018 release; another mystery of the moment is whether Swedish pop artist Lykke Li will present her new album at Primavera Sound, as she’s had us waiting quite a while since her ‘I Never Learn’ from 2014; Baltimore duo Beach House comes along with their charming pop and a new album; Jane Birkin performs the songs of Serge Gainsbourg accompanied by a symphonic orchestra of 50 musicians; we won’t be missing one of the most interesting artists in recent years, Ariel Pink, and his fascinating style of pop; the hypnotic Grizzly Bear; and British shoegaze from Slowdive.
Halfway between London and Mediterranean coasts, the young Alien Tango and his exotic band emerged as one of the most refreshing and unclassifiable groups of the new psychedelia; as bizarre and suitable for the most sophisticated pop. This futuristic kid orchestra made their debut with the EP Supernatural Mango (Red Kashmir Records, 2016), a magma of acid synth melodies, accordion guitars and personal sounds. Going through discosoul and space psych or Indian music, their glam pop places them in the same dimension as Foxygen, Ariel Pink and The Lemon Twigs. Tomorrow in concert at Vida Festival.
He moves like his compatriot Nick Cave and the press have called him a cross between Alan Vega and Ariel Pink, but the Australian Alex Cameron dodges all comparisons in order to create a strange and fascinating soundscape that takes a little from each of atmospheric electronic music, dark pop of the eighties and the least conventional crooners. The Sydney artist, accompanied by the saxophonist Roy Molloy, has just release Jumping The Shark on Secretly Canadian, a record with out-of-this-world arrangements with which Cameron at times evokes Suicide, Bruce Springsteen and at others Arcade Fire. This next Saturday at Primavera Club.