LOOKING GLASS WAR – Where Neon Meets The Rain EP

On this debut EP, Boston’s Looking Glass War aren’t shy in mining the past for some key musical inspirations. Drawing from post punk, goth, melodic shoegaze and dreampop, ‘Where Neon Meets The Rain’ presents four very different songs – each showing a different angle to the band’s retro, riff-based sound – but this is more than a hacked out musical CV. Yes, the songs are all different, but there’s a common musical thread and a very distinctive vocal gluing the pieces together. In terms of debut releases it has a lot of muscle, even if originality often takes a back seat.

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THE REAL GONE SINGLES BAR #18

Welcome back to the Real Gone Singles Bar, the place where we explore the various individual mp3s that have landed in our inbox over the previous few weeks. This time around, we bring you a vast array of great tunes, ranging from indie, to especially noisy post punk, to electronica; there’s some brilliant Americana, and even an unexpected collaboration. This collection of tunes really captures the variety we aim for within this regular feature so, as always, we hope there’ll be something to entertain everyone. The quest to bring you great new and recent music is still ongoing – if you have anything you think would be a great fit for a Singles Bar feature sometime in the future, please get in touch!

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THE REAL GONE SINGLES BAR #15

Welcome back to the Real Gone Singles Bar, the place where we explore some of the individual mp3s that have landed in our inbox over the previous few weeks. This feature has become more popular than we’d ever imagined, so it’s a genuine pleasure to bring you another round of underground cuts, oddities, and other things that deserve to be on your radar. As usual, we’ve been spoilt for choice, but here are another eight standout tracks, ranging from some very grand sounding pop-rock with a retro feel to semi-orchestral minimalism, some retro rock and another tune from a favourite band. We think this sums up the varied approach of the Singles Bar to date, and as usual, there should be something for most people to enjoy.

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THE FALL – Fall Sound Archive Vol 7: 1970s

The Fall’s early work has been reissued several times, but with a few of their “Fall Sound Archives” releases, Cherry Red Records managed to go above and beyond to give some well worn material the best send off ever. Both ‘Live At The Witch Trials’ and ‘Dragnet’ were released as lavish three disc editions in 2019, but even better, the seminal ‘Hex Enduction Hour’ formed part of a brilliant box set, ‘1982’, later that same year. By making the much loved album the main feature of a 6CD anthology, it set a precedent for similarly great reissues.

Taking the same approach as that box set, ‘1970s’ is a hefty 12CD tome that claims to include all of the band’s work from that decade. It doesn’t – there are notable omissions – but it pulls together a huge wealth of material, including several live shows that have never been officially released. There’s always a question of how much bootleg quality Fall material you need, but as the old fan mantra suggests, “you must get them all”, and the lure of six unavailable live sets here will certainly be enough for the hardened fan to want this set – quality be damned-ah.

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SCUM – For Health And Well-Being EP

It’s brave move to open a release with a spoken word passage, especially for a band who are barely out of the starting blocks in terms of their career, but Scum come in with such confidence on their second EP – and a semi-pretentiousness – that it makes the listener wonder what else they’ve got up their collective sleeve. “The primal scream of the modern team”, sneers a very natural sounding voice, before being particularly scathing of modern TV and its watchers who “do not see what they need”. It all sounds very jaded for a band whom, at the time of recording, appear to have a combined age that’s less than a third of Jello Biafra’s own.

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