Life Elsewhere Music Vol 291

Such a lot of wonderful new music continues to come my way and I’m so pleased to share with you. First up, a cut that arrived just as the final selection for this volume was being made. I’d been impressed with earlier releases from Fake Palms so immediately I had Visions blasting out of the studio monitors. It’s a lovely chunk of guitar-driven rock ’n’ roll. Michael le Riche who is Fake Palms says this about Visions, “It’s the sound of power chords and an overactive right arm. No more intricate, overly complex guitar parts or different time signatures, it’s angular and jangly. Musically, it’s the most direct thing I’ve ever done. No hiding behind walls of reverb, mutating time signatures, or vague lyrics”. The Toronto-based artist has an LP on the way, Lemons featuring a veritable who’s who of that great city’s indie artists. Plus Michelle is on the superb Hand Drawn Dracula imprint so you know it has to be good. Oh, one more thing, I’m assured Michael le Riche puts on a riveting live show – another reason to nip up north more frequently. | Now to a cut from the EP Sleaze by The Silver Lines, a band who say this, “Imagine wearing a scratchy hand knitted sweater and playing flat out rock n roll music in a stuffy, dilapidated English country cottage … well that’s what it’s like to be a Silver Line.” Listening to Talking To Myself from their EP, I have to say their description seems to be right on target. Then, I read this, “Formed by the brothers Ravenscroft who were uninspired by the current landscape of guitar music, decided they were going to make music that turns them on.” Adding, “The Silver Lines set out to make an EP that defies the genre and their peers within it. The product is a collection of short stories which takes the listener on a very self-aware journey of S&M, night-sweats, substance abuse, and sodomy.” Without all the words, these lads would still have me convinced to keep a watchful eye on them. Top marks! | From his third upcoming studio album, everythingeverydayeverything, Australian producer, Golden Vessel gives us Trash (In Each & Every Way) featuring, Nick Ward. This is an album featuring many collaborations with stalwarts of the modern Australian music scene. Take my word on this, what you have here is an extraordinarily well-produced single giving us advance warning to not overlook Golden Vessel’s next LP. | Next up, Jessie Kilguss has an extraordinarily competent voice – and I suspect this former actress has a wicked sense of humor. About her new album, What Do Whales Dream About at Night? Jessie says, “It was inspired by storytelling and emotion.” She goes on to explain, “In 2018, I was helping teach a 3-day songwriting workshop at a correctional facility for girls aged 11-14. We were writing a collective song, going around the circle and everyone was adding a line. I had just read in the news that a man had been eaten by a shark and I thought it would make everybody laugh so I added my line “a Great White Shark ate a man off Cape Cod”. Even though it’s horrendous, it was so far out of left field that everyone did laugh. I got home and decided to turn my line into a song.” I’m thinking to be careful of what you say when around Jessie Kilguss, she’ll turn it into a song. | Geneviève Ryan-Martel presents as TDJ and wants you to know that is pronounced, Tee Dee Jay. I want you to know this Montreal artist has made an exceptional album. To help you understand why I’m so enthusiastic about TDJ I’m sharing two cuts with you, Closer and Underwater. This album, TDJ123 belies what your first impression might be. Magnificent. Cool artwork too by Esteban Gonzalez. | Social Union hail from Christchurch, New Zealand, and somehow Vanilla Martin and Luke Penrose caught the attention of our good friend, Alex at Blackjack Illuminist Records. You’ll hear Fall Into Me, the title cut of their new EP, but I recommend all the cuts here. Alex says, “Social Union are a blend of synthpop/darkwave/industrial/post-punk” I choose to say they make fine damn music. | Bitty McLean was born in 1972 in the UK, raised listening to his father’s reggae collection, young Delroy McLean began singing over the dub versions. By 1992, McLean had not only co-produced, engineered but played and sang on UB40’s hugely successful album, Promises and Lies. Now known. As Bitty, McLean went on to have a string of top ten singles. His amazing voice recalls the early days of the great reggae crooners. Meanwhile, George “Peckings” Price had a sound system and later a record shop in West London, (which I frequented often on a Saturday afternoon). After George Price died his sons, Chris and Duke set up the Peckings label to build on the legacy established by their father. This tasty gem, Tell Me by Bitty McLean originally released in 2007, is now out as a remix on the Peckings imprint. As is typical with reggae singles the version side has another vocalist, Here we find little-known female artist, Natijah with a strange misogynist ode to being obedient in Hey Little Girl. A wonderful voice, excellent recording yet, those words, “Bow down low…you’re never right, you’re always wrong. Watch what you’re doing…little girl” | Time for a tasty slice of Dubstep courtesy of Sam Stevens also known as, Chokez. This one is Run Up from a 4-track – 2-sided 12” on the Encrypted Audio imprint. If you’re still a little nervous about Dubstep, Encrypted Audio would definitely be the place to check out. Full marks to whoever designed their very cool logo. Smart music. | Mammal Sounds non-stop production of quality new releases continues with Australian producer, Litchie best known for making chilled electronic/downtempo music. Here we have, A Dream, But It’s Real featuring the vocal talent Sarah Law, who Litchie says he was drawn to her style and tone. He explains, “I’m a vivid dreamer, I tried to sonically simulate a real dream state in which the dreamer has no control and is just along for the ride.” The EP, Some Songs for Someone, Somewhere is waiting for your full attention. | Thirty is the title of Hannah Hu’s single and what a wonderful way to enjoy her delightful voice. Perhaps age is not just a number when Hannah Marsden the singer-songwriter out of London reveals her observations. I want to hear more from Hannah Hu. | St. Augustine, Florida is where the Fountain of Youth was supposedly found, yet I’m not so sure Erin Welton & Scott Ferrell are all that bothered with such quaint legends, after all their album Therium and the cut, Mammoth are cloaked in a misty, ghostly aura. They are known as Autumn’s Grey Solace which should explain everything. Nicely done. | To close this volume we go to Africa by way of Greece to hear Awana by Panama Cardoon. This three-track EP on Bonfido Disques out of Greece is a brand new release although I’m not sure when this one was recorded it surely could have been released circa 1980s. In any event, dance your little cotton socks off!


  1. Fake Palms – Visions
  2. The Silver Lines – Talking To Myself
  3. Golden Vessel – Trash (In Each & Every Way) (Feat. Nick Ward)
  4. Jessie Kilguss – Great White Shark
  5. TDJ – Closer
  6. TDJ – Underwater
  7. Social Union – Fall Into Me
  8. Bitty McLean – Tell Me (Remix)
  9. Natijah – Hey Little Girl
  10. Chokez – Run Up
  11. Litchie – A Dream, But It’s Real (feat. Sarah Law)
  12. Hannah Hu – Thirty
  13. Autumn’s Grey Solace – Mammoth
  14. Panama Cardoon – Awana

Artwork by Angus Dunne “Three” 2020 giclée print on archival paper 25” x 25” Courtesy of Norman B’s collection