When Tim invited me to have a crack at The Blue Walrus’ home & away series I had one concern, one of the bands I knew that I wanted (no… had) to talk about is a band that I have to declare having a major vested interest in, being as they are signed to our own little label.
Still with that caveat in place it’s my privilege to introduce you to :Kinema:, one of the best bands I have ever had the pleasure of knowing. I was tipped off to them by another act we’d released a record with, Line and on the basis of the one song they had on their MySpace we invited them to play the re-launch party for our website. They owned the party.
That night they were everything I was looking for in a band. It was like someone had peered in to my record bag, taken the best bits from the likes of Michael McDonald, Hot Chip and Chic, and molded them into this unlikely looking trio from Brighton.
I instantly knew I wanted to work with them, release their records and hopefully make them stars and since that day they’ve rewarded everything I’ve put into them tenfold, ok admittedly not in cash terms, but I’ve had the pleasure of watching them grow as performers and songwriters and they’ve sent me track after track of sublime perfect pop.
Indie kids that love Scandinavian electronica, American RnB and European disco, obsess over Jacko records and write songs about vintage keyboards and Usher, :Kinema: are square pegs in an industry filled with the smoothest of round holes. As the Source said “in an alternate universe, they’d be on Radio 1’s A-list and have a David LaChapelle video” sadly as it is we’re stuck in this decidedly less fun one.
Still despite this their debut EP sold out, their live shows have inspired mass stage invasions and at one of their last gigs a couple of girls from Japan told me they’d planned their entire European holiday around seeing the band play.
In February we’re releasing their next EP, which in My Beautiful Machines and I Love Your Beam contains two of my favourite ever pop songs. Whether 2011 sees the wider public (and importantly it’s media gatekeepers) ready to open their ears and hearts to pop that hasn’t been sandblasted to soulless ‘perfection’ remains to be seen (I’d guess not) but whatever happens I truly love this band and hope that more of you get a chance to love them too.
(:Kinema: coverage on Slutty Fringe)
One of the unexpectedly annoying things about writing a reasonably popular blog is that you very soon find yourself swimming in shit. You may start out with the best intentions of offering a real alternative to the slow, corrupt and bloated mainstream media, a place where all bands are created equal and everyone gets a fair hearing, but when you start receiving around 100 press releases, pitches and tracks every day you soon batten the hatches and enter a state of lockdown.
It’s a sad fact that most bands really do not know how to approach bloggers or journalists, hey it’s not their fault, most professional PRs don’t either, but it does mean that after a while the unread emails start to build up and you find yourself gravitating towards those from trusted sources. It’s the reason why PR people exist, after all.
So when an email arrived from a band, Narcisse, I’d never heard of, complete with absolutely no information, no sign that they’d selected us for a reason, just a name and a MySpace link, by all rights it should have gone straight in the trashcan.
Sometimes though curiosity gets the better of you and on that night I clicked that link and heard a track called Moonsex Cassette that blew my tiny little mind. There was nothing that revolutionary about it, but it was just so well put together, sounded so utterly perfect I assumed it was another well financed band slumming it to gain some indie credibility before an assault on the charts.
As it turns out I was wrong, there was no massive engine pushing them on inevitably towards indie stardom, in fact judging by their still almost non-existent MySpace plays they would currently struggle to be picked out of a police line-up by their mothers.
They had (and in fact still have) just three tracks up for public consumption the aforementioned Moonsex Cassette and two both clubbier, though still both totally amazing, affairs and that appears to be it. God knows what’s going on with them today, after much multi platform stalking I finally and briefly make contact with them towards the end of last Summer, but have sadly heard nothing more since.
Still Moonsex Cassette remains an absolutely standout track, one that deserves to be heard by a hell of a lot more people than it has been to date and should be soundtracking nervous first fumblings at indie discos around the world.
Hopefully we haven’t heard the last of them and they’re about to spring into life in 2011. Who knows just maybe someone might read this who is in a position to make sure that that’s the case, and for everyone else I just hope you get as much enjoyment from these songs as I have.
Blogger Picks Home & Away is our way of showcasing some of the best music bloggers around as we start 2011, and getting out of them a favourite band from their home town alongside a more international act they would like to hear more from. This post was written by John from Slutty Fringe, which he an his co-conspirators have developed into one of, if not the best UK music/art/fashion blogs with their unqiue blend of underground and underappreciated gems, mixtapes and a fantastic new label.