Busch : S/T EP (Marsh-Marigold Records 1994)

German language has never been an easy one to accommodate with gentle guitar pop. A direct evidence is that nearly all great german indie acts (Bartlebees, Legendary Bang, Pop Tarts, Jesterbells…and later Brideshead, Den Baron…) always did/do it in English. The most significant exceptions to this rule were Die 5 Freunde and Busch, both on the cult german label Marsh Marigold back at the beginning of the 90’s. The latter was even regarded by many magazines as the “German response to the Smiths”. Well, the truth is not so caricatural than that, Busch (text and music by one man, Kreuder) is merely the most subtle, refined and sophisticated act Germany has ever generated !!! Their first 94 eponym EP and their following 96 debut LP “Entsetzlich” both border on the miraculous !!! They reappeared six years later with their excellent second LP “Bossa Nova” on Apricot records and… no tangible news since then…


=> Catch them up HERE , HERE or directly at the record labels

=> Busch : Angeklagt

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The Boyfriends


The Boyfriends : S/T (Boobytrap)

Being the very first band ever to play on the new Glastonburry "John Peel Stage" is a true honour and being picked by Morrissey to join him on his European Tour must be a quite revealing experience... Massively praised by UK music press recently, here are The Boyfriends with their first eponym full length, released 3 months ago on Boobytrap. Despite a one-track minded overall feeling, the band succeeds in providing remarkable 80's mancunian style pop, with Martin-Moz-Wallace parodic voice and huge Hook-a-like basslines...romanticism, sophistication, melodrama...

==> The Boyfriends : No Tomorrow

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The Electric Pop Group


The Electric Pop Group : S/T (No label)


This CD cover could be suitable for the next “Best New Act” @ the next “Brit Awards”, a sort of NME hip’ band you’ll need to listen to, well there is some truth in that statement !!  Brit Awards and NME not yet ! But hype almost, and you need to listen to it…of course ! On the menu here naïve guitar pop, candour à gogo and simple-minded lyrics…The contemporary Swedish response to Another Sunny Day


-”I’m in Love with a Girl who doesn’t know I exist”! What should I do ?

-“She’s playing with your heart”, “Walk away”!

- I think she’s my “Popgirly”, “the Centre of my Little World”, she’s “Sweeter than the Rest”

-“What’s happened to you my dearest Friend ?”

- I’d like her to “Turn me on” but, frankly speaking, ”I don’t suppose I’ll get a Second Chance”

-“Why can’t you ?”


- Do not worry, one day maybe, “Things will be nice” ! Meanwhile, buy this HERE


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The Dreamers (Where is Mr Wright ?)


One week ago I received a Myspace friend request from a new Anglo/Swedish project called "The Dreamers". I checked it out and first heard a nice women voice on a kind of Bossa Nova song called "A place I know", well, quite good stuff ! Reading a little further I discovered the band members’ names: Sarah Nyberg Pergament (ex Action Biker…fine !) and Kevin Wright. What ? K..e...v..i...n   W...r..:i...g...h...t ? Is this the Twilight Zone ? Well, no, this is the Earth, we're in 2007 and the real Mr Wright, my all-time "él" pop hero, formely known as "Always" is sending ME a friend request !!!


From all "él records" legendary artists (King of Luxembourg, Would-be-goods, Louis Philippe, Momus, ...), “Always” is, to my eyes, the one who sticked the most to él philosophy : strangeness, lyricism, extreme triviality, fantasy and elegance !!! His 1988 album “Thames Valley Leather Club” is a pure underrated masterpiece, a baroque blend of post punk arty introspection and Postcard-style magical jangly guitars !!!…His recent career as Mr Wright is also a superb accomplishment with several great essays on Le Grand Magistery and Siesta Records (Metropolitan in 2004), the latter enclosing such an instant classic as the delectable “Anna Karina”. More to be announced soon on The Dreamers !!!

==> Always - Amateur Detection (él records -1988) ==> Buy it HERE

==> Mr Wright - Anna Karina (siesta - 2004) ==> Buy it HERE

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Soda Fountain Rag


Soda Fountain Rag : "Qui a besoin d'une voiture ?" (Anorak records)

Happy to see french label Anorak back in action with a collection of brand new releases announced ! And the first of the series is this bitterly charming 5 titles EP by Norwegian act Soda Fountain Rag. Well, not strictly speaking a band, more a one-girl project ! Her name is Ragnhild Hogstad Jordal and she's concocting the utmost thrilling bedroom-pop you could figure out ! All the scores selected here are true smacks, between 60's standards, K records and digital europop, the whole coated with innate qualities of bright songwriting !!! Do not miss this !!!!

==> Soda Fountain Rag : "Who needs a Car"

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Ananda Shankar


Ananda Shankar and his Music (EMI India 1975 - Fallout 2006)


Ananda (1942-1999) is certainly not the most famous member of the Shankar Family : his uncle Ravi is the best-known Indian instrumentalist-sitarist of all time and his cousin is nobody less than jazz-country-soul singer/songwriter Norah Jones. However, this man maybe was the most innovative, brilliant and visionary Indian musician ever !!! His main achievement is to have broken the traditions and fused western and eastern music, giving it a touch of timeless universality… His very hard to find “India only” 1975 album “Ananda Shankar and his Music” is regarded as his masterpiece. The liner notes say “A dizzying blend of pounding funk beats, sitar, rock guitar, tabla and Moog synthesizer, alongside mellower, classically influenced tunes…a psych-funk classic”. This killer album is at last reedited on Fallout Records and you can’t spend the rest of your life ignoring it… Buy it HERE or HERE


==> Ananda Shankar : Dancing Drums

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Montgolfier Brothers vs Soft Verdict


The actual reason for which I needed to disinter this 2005’Montgolfier Brothers’ EP from the shelf was a mystery to me until I heard the first chords of song n°2 “Bridestones Revisited”! It’s just the perfect reflection of the following “Les Disques du Crépuscule” video I was hunting yesterday on You Tube :


Soft Verdict : “Close Cover” video (1983)


22 years between those 2 songs and this purely ironic title “Close Cover”…Roger Quigley vs Wim Mertens…Vespertine vs Crepuscule…What a remarkable unsuspected filiation ! And again, like yesterday, this sweet melancholy deep down in my heart...


==> The Montgolfier Brothers : "Bridestones revisited"

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Roy Moller


Roy Moller : Speak When I'm Spoken To (Book Club Records - Nov 2006)

Scottish fellow Roy Moller has been a long time faithful Belle and Sebastian collaborator on some Stevie Jackson’s own-penned songs and has also appeared with The Happy Couple recently. We met him for the first time as a solo artist with his great “Maximum Smile” 7” single on the Félicité Single Club in 2003, followed in 2005 by a very limited 8” on Heliotone and a 3 titles 7” EP called “Fermez la bouche” on beloved Pickled Egg label.

Time now for the debut full length, released in November on Aussie label Book Club Records with…Stevie Jackson as co-producer and both B&S members Stevie J. and Bob Kildea also credited as musicians.

The inspiration here is not to be found in any old or recent Scottish scene : melodies, harmonies and choruses are clearly 60’s California Coast influenced, at times also reminiscent of the Kinks… while instrumentation and sounds sometimes send back to good old british psychedelic works. Great job from a very gifted and unconventional artist!! Buy it HERE (couldn’t find it in any mailorder yet)!!


==> Roy Moller : Maximum Smile

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Glitter & Bleep


Glitter & Bleep : Joystick Pop (Relax Beat / Cyclo ; Released November 2006)


You probably already came across this highly influential "chip music", “lo-tech” or “8-bit pop” thing, with bands like YMCK, Dat Politics or Crystal Castles, grounding on vintage console games’sounds. If you’ve not been caught by the genre yet, well, this is the one for you ! “Joystick Pop” is a project from Relax Beat label (also at the origin of the similar “Boy Playground” comp back in 2003) bringing together very talented acts from the European scene, and it is purely OVERWHELMING !!! You’ll find higgledy-piggledy the ghosts of your son’s Game Boy, The Human League, your first PC aka commodore 64, Depeche Mode’s Speak & Spell and Pacman,... all this wrapped in a very very poppy atmosphere ... Back to your childhood musical feelings !!!


Artists featured : Tobiah, The Hardliner, Koro Osanago, Mr Osbyte, T&J, Slabb, Komatrohn, Der Tante Renate


==> Komatrohn : Weekend


Buy it HERE or HERE


Tobiah : "I Love your Music" video

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Wishing you all a very sweet new year full of great pop moments !!!

Je vous souhaite une nouvelle année pleine de petits bonheurs et de grands moments pop !!!


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Math and Physics Club


Math and Physics Club : S/T (Matinée)


This highly awaited debut album from Seattle’s latest indie sensation Math and Physics Club is very insidious and need some come-backs to perceive all its reliefs (and no need to have been in a polytechnic school for that). First positive point: there isn’t any song from the 2 first EP’s “Weekends Away” and “Movie Ending Romance”. Second good point: the songs are as good as in those 2 EP’s. Third good point: the 2 first EP’s where excellent which gives value to the second point. I red some reviews during the last weeks and the comparisons with B&S didn't convince me. Well yeah it’s true that Charles‘voice’ texture is quite close to Stuart’s and "Last Dance" is very sebastianesque, but apart from that… I’d rather link them to occasional labelmates Lucksmiths in the uptempo parts and Brighter/Harper Lee in the quieter moments, and they don’t have to blush from those parallels…


==> Math and Physics Club : Holidays and Saturdays

==> Buy HERE or HERE

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The Daisy Chain


The Daisy Chain: "Straight or Lame" (United International-1967) - Great 60's-all-songwriter-girl-bands part I

This is not the latest Stereolab e-single, this is "Zzotto" taken from "Straight of Lame", the 1967 - and only - album by The Daisy Chain, a legendary obscure female foursome from Orange County, California. This ultra-rare psych-garage album, reissued in 2005 on Sundazed Records, is proving that an all-songwriter-girl combo could do something drop-dead cool in those years,  ruled by flower power teenage boys. Rosemary, Camille, Shel Le and Dee Dee Lea have accomplished here a very weird but charming one-shot diversified project, oscillating from Soul to Garage and from Pop to Psych, and, as you can hear, the carrier waves from that seism are still being felt today...

==> The Daisy Chain : Zzotto

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Best album/EP 2006


Best album or EP  :


Could have done this in 3 parts : best indie album, best electro album and best EP, but I’m getting tired with all these charts so I’m gonna do it all at once. Ooooh, and if you’re a twee boy or girl, do not forget the traditional TweeNet Poll end-of-year reflex!!


01. Ponies in the Surf                         Ponies on Fire

This album simply deserves the top for its delicate melodies and its brilliant minimalist outline. At the era of the 0,99 € e-song and the i-pod, this handmade sleeve and  this rock-bottom price (4$) are the incontrovertible evidences that the best pop quality remains the affair of passionate people.

02. Tender Trap                                  6 Billion People

A very dense and mature work, perfectly synthesizing all Amelia Fletcher’s personal background, from Heavenly’s sonic spaces to Marine Research’ grace.

03. Love is All                                   Nine Times that same Song

The first Pop ‘n Cherries post back in April and a home fave since 2 years now. A unique saxo-saturated heady post punk sound, male choirs from beyond the grave and J.O’s transcendent sputters. The best live experience of the year and a truly classic album, recently re-released on a major !

04. The Radio Dept.                          Pet Grief

05. Cats on Fire                                 Draw in the Reins EP

06. Pipas                                           Sorry Love

07. Belle and Sebastian                      The Life Pursuit

08. Stereolab                                     Fab Four Suture

09. Little Name                                  How to Swim and Live (streamed on the web)

10. The Hit Parade                             The Return of the Hit Parade

11. Bears                                            S/T

12. The Electric Pop Group                 S/T

13. The Happy Couple                       Happy Times & Petty Crimes

14. Pants Yell                                     Recent Drama

15. Casiotone f.t.p. Alone                   Etiquette

16. Cannonball Jane                           Street Vermacular (Europe release)

17. Dominique A                                L’horizon

18. The Most Serene Republic            Phages EP + Underwater Cinematographer

19. Junior Boys                                  So this is Goodbye

20. Postal Blue                                   Road to Happiness EP

21. Mirafiori                                       No Podemo Volver a Casa

22. Momus                                         Ocky Milk

23. Destroyer                                     Destroyer’s Rubies

24. Hypo and EDH                             The correct Use of Pets

25. The Embassy                                Tacking (Worldwide release)

26. Hot Chip                                      The Warning

27. Poni Hoax                                    S/T

28. Pas/Cal                                         Dear Sir EP

29. Nathan Fake                                 Drowning in a Sea of Love

30. El Perro del Mar                           S/T

31. Holden                                         Chevrotine

32. Voxtrot                                        Mother, Sisters, Daughters and Wives EP

33. Farina                                           Allotments

34. Swan Lake                                   Beast Moans

35. Gossip                                          Standing in the Way of Control

36. All my Friends                              All my Friends get hung up

37. The Airfields                                 Laneways EP

38. Lo Fi FNK                                    Boylife

39. Math and Physics Club                 S/T

40. The Pipettes                                 We are the Pipettes

41. Orval Carlos Sibelius                    S/T

42. Dat Politics                                   Wow Twist

43. Miou Miou                                    La la grande finale

44. My Brightest Diamond                   Bring Me the Workhouse

45. Camera Obscura                          Let’s get out of this Country

46. Mates of State                              Bring it Back

47. Electroluvs                                    Bubblewrapped

48. The Long Blondes                        Someone to drive you home + EP’s

49. The Cathouse                               Bloody Hours EP

50. Peter, Bjorn and John                   Writer’s block


Must have forgotten some…

Of course, many stories to be checked in the archives…

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Best new act 2006


1. Little Name ==> mp3 : "How to Swim and Live"

2. Bears

3. The Electric Pop Group

4. All My Friends

5. Sally Shapiro

6. The Airfields

7. My Name in Lights

8. Orval Carlos Sibelius

9. The Motifs

10. The 1900’s

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Best comp. 2006


Best Compilation by Various Artists  (All genres)


1. The Kids at the Club : An Indiepop compilation (How does it Feel to be Loved)

2. The Trip - as curated by Jarvis Cocker & Steve Mackey (Family)

3. Chloé & Ivan Smagghe : The Dysfunctional Family (Kill the DJ)

4. CD86 : 48 Tracks from the Birth of Indiepop (Sanctuary)

5. Peachy Little Secrets (Fruit Records)

6. Blue Skies Up – Welcome to the New Pop Revolution (Dogbox Records)

7. BIPPP : French Synth-Wave 1978/85 (Born Bad)

8. Pop the Question (Book Club Records)

9. Digital Penetration (Alt/Del Records)

10. Kitsuné Maison Compilation 3 (Kitsuné)

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The Happy Couple


The Happy Couple : Happy Times & Petty Crimes compilation (Quince Records)

Thomas Hilverkus and Johanna Maier (aka Janehoney) from Germany are what we call "Music Mates", having a common love for "The Pop Moment". In 2002, they created the marvellous Félicité Single Club (with an él in it yeaahhh), releasing some stylishly packaged collector 7" with cult artists as King of Luxembourg, The Catalysts and Roy Moller.

In the same time, they formed The Happy Couple, releasing their first highly acclaimed EP "Four Seasons"on their own label. 2005 saw the release of their second EP "Fools in Love"on the lovely Matinée label (in collaboration with B&S' Stevie Jackson) and earlier this year, they recorded a third confidential "Song for the Troubadour" CDEP. This compilation on the Japanese label Quince gives us the opportunity to get the 3 EP's reunited, confirming the duo sweet tendencies for tasteful, fragile, jangly twee pop.  One of the best Xmas gifts I could imagine...



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French-speaking pop / Chanson : 2006 best


Oooh yeah it's that time of the year, and we'll start with an easy one, remembering what we loved this year in the field of french chanson, variété, french-speaking pop or whatever you call it... So, in the absence of Orwell, Watoo Watoo and Arnaud Fleurent-Didier, my choice went to :

1. Dominique A : L'horizon (Wagram)
The Master at last back in perfect shape, not too declamatory, not too pompous, just how we love him the most : mellifluous, sensitive and visionnary.

2. Holden : Chevrotine (Le Village Vert)

With this 3rd album, Holden is reaching the quintessence of ethereal, elegant, marvellously arranged timeless pop, accessing the podium of France's ever-most sophisticated pop bands.


3. Barbara Carlotti : Les lys brisés (4AD)

The Chanson Française tradition is not dead, thanks this heartbreaking woman, with her profound voice and stylish pen.

4. Aujourd'hui Madame : Des Hommes Modernes (Best Kept Secret)

Perfect catchy pop tunes in the best indie style, enclosed in an antique tape. What more do you want ?


5. Malajube : Trompe l'oeil (Dare to Care)

The Hexagone is still anxiously waiting for an innovative pop-rock act. This act already exists in...Québec, Canada. Malajube's immediate and energetic melodies kicked my ass...


The rest du meilleur :


Vanessa and the O's

La ballade d'O








Celle que vous croyez

(Dièse Productions)



Raides à la ville EP



Massimo Guadalupi

Entre deux rivages

(Trois Jeunes Tambours)



Ouh la la la



Fabien Martin

Comme un seul homme








Tant de temps

(Emma Productions)



la nuit m'attend




Cinéma enchanté



Saule et les pleureurs

Vous êtes ici

(20 février)



Que le temps passe

(En attendant)


Emilie Simon


(Barclay / Universal)


Charlotte Gainsbourg





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The Most Serene Republic


The Most Serene Republic : Underwater Cinematrographer + Phages EP (Arts & Crafts- 2006)

One great explorative debut album  (Underwater Cinematographer) and a brilliant long EP (only available on tour initially) this year are sufficient to consider MSR as one of Canada's most precious acts. While the album was exploring all directions (from Blonde Redhead to Broken Social Scene), "Phages" allows them to find their very own noisy and melodramatic sound. Stunning act to follow !

==> The Most Serene Republic - Proposition 61 (from Underwater Cinematographer)

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Comix : "Touche pas mon sexe"(1981) from BIPPP compilation, French Synth Wave 1979/85 (Born Bad Records-2006)
This short-living derisive French band, formed in 1979 by Natan Hercberg (hype parisian DJ at the end of the 70's, rubbing elbows with Novö heroes such as Mathematiques Modernes and Jacno) and André Demay (well-known guitarist notably working with Christophe) is signed in 1982 on the young Virgin label. Their only album and the  first single "Touche pas mon sexe", despite its very funny, polemist and disrespectful theme, will be a flop and  will wrongly remain confidential. Time for rehabilitation...


Featured on BIPPP : A TROIS DANS LES WC « Contagion » ACT « Ping pong » LES VISITEURS DU SOIR « je técris d'un pays » VOX DEI « Terroriste » COMIX « Touche pas mon Sexe » TGV « Partie 1 » C.K.C « 20h25 » MARIE MOOR « Pretty Day » DEUX « Game and Performance » RUTH « Polaroid Roman Photo » VITOR HUBLOT « Aller Simple » VISIBLE « Le jour se lève » CASINO MUSIC « Viol AF 015 »

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Language of Flowers


Language of Flowers : You're the One (from The Kids at the Club Compilation)

"Language of Flowers" was a song on Pale Saints' first album and is also the name of this talented outfit from UK. Their debut album on Shelflife records was one of the best 2004' discoveries and the song Tara Mascara has now become a classic indie anthem.

"You're the One" is part of the great indiepop compilation "The Kids at the Club" released some months ago on How Does It Feel To Be Loved? label. The song never sounded right to be included in the 2004 album and has been re-released many times before this final version.

This post is especially dedicated to the person who stole my laptop last week...

Language of Flowers - You're the One

Buy it HERE

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Japanese delights


Before being a teen idol, cuttie girl Yuko Ogura was a swimsuit model. "Onna no Ko, Otoko no Ko" is part of manga "School Rumble (1st season)" OST and was a big hit back in 2005. Get it HERE with a Yuko calendar !

==> Yuko Ogura - Onna no Ko, Otoko no Ko

Polysics has built a solid worlwide reputation by touring a lot in Europe and US and claim to be "the Japanese Devo"! Q : Are we not men ? A : We are Polysics ! This awesome 10 years old robot-dancer, known as "Strong Machine 2",  is not part of the band yet ! Get this HERE

This is the latest single by futuristic electro girl band Perfume. This smashed Japanese Billboard several weeks ago. All of their 3 singles are huge ! Get it HERE

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Swan Lake


Swan Lake : Beast Moans (Jagjaguwar)

The story was in the air some months ago : a super-super canadian group with Spencer Krug (Wolf Parade), Dan Bejar (New Pornographers, Destroyer) and Carey Mercer (Frog Eyes). Any excited, curious or even skeptical you could be about this, you'll have to accept, after hearing "Beast Moans", that this music succeeds in fusing all 3 actors' antagonisms, bringing them into a fully new own original sound, solemn, exploratory and beautiful at the same time...

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Mikado forever...

Despite only one official album and some singles, Mikado (1982-1991) is one of the most emblematic acts generated in the whole France pop history. Weirdly however, the band had to wait being famous in Japan before having some recognition in its own country... Mikado, it is firstly Pascale Borel’s inimitable voice, simultaneously sweet and grinded, transforming each syllable into a graceful evanescent moment. Mikado, it is secondly Gregori Czerkinsky’s happy-go-lucky yeasty electro-pop. Let’s remember Mikado story through 3 songs and let’s make this in French hé hé :



Par Hasard” (Les disques du Crépuscule – 1982)

Mikado est fondé en 1982 par Pascale Borel (paroles) et Gregori Czerkinsky (musique). C’est le gourou du Crépuscule Michel Duval qui leur fait signer leur premier single très confidentiel « Par Hasard » et c’est de là que tout partira. Au Japon tout d’abord, où ils remplacent presque « par hasard » Antena au pied levé pour une mini-tournée avec Winston Tong et Durutti Column via le label cousin « Le Crépuscule au Japon ». Grâce à cette tournée et les autres qui suivront, Mikado s’y retrouve vite en haut de l’affiche, finit par signer sur un gros label et y devenir extrêmement populaire.




« Naufrage en hiver » ( Non Standard-JP-1984 ; Vogue-FR-1986)

Tandis que le 1er album éponyme sort au Japon en 1984 (avec une pochette de Pierres  et Gilles), Vogue en prend la licence en France et décide de sortir « Naufrage en Hiver » en single, le soutenant par une promotion très active. Le succès est au rendez-vous : concerts, passages en radio et enfin une certaine reconnaissance en France. Suivront une reprise en main par CBS-Sony et la sortie du single « La fille du soleil »




« C’est le vent » (Unreleased-1990 ; Le Village Vert-FR-1998)

Après 2 enfants et quelques années de pause, le couple Borel-Czerkinsky présente en 1990 les maquettes de nouvelles chansons  pour un second album assez autobiographique où Grégori s’affirme davantage au chant. Sony fait mine de s’y intéresser puis décline. Suite à des problèmes personnels entre Gregori et Pascale, l’aventure Mikado s’arrête en 1991. Le second album ne verra jamais le jour …jusqu’en 1998 où, dans la foulée du 1er excellent album solo de Czerkinsky, le label Village Vert sort « Mikado Forever », une compilation de 23 titres comprenant la quasi-totalité du 1er album, des titres sortis au Japon, en Hollande et en Angleterre de même que des inédits dont certains titres du « second album », comme ce « C’est le vent ».



Il ne reste plus qu’à souhaiter peut-être que les 2 albums soient (ré)édités intégralement en digipack (on verrait bien Ze records ou Les Temps Modernes), avec pourquoi pas une pochette inédite de Pierres et Gilles pour le second. En attendant, regardons devant nous en continuant à écouter le miraculeux dernier album de Pascale Borel tout en scrutant l’arrivée du prochain Czerkinsky (c’est sûr il nous prépare quelque chose le petit Grégori, foi de Katerine…).


Sources :

-Pascale Borel Official Website

-The Crepuscule and Factory Pages

-Pascale Borel interview on lalalala.org

-Tequeno, a Japanese webpage about Mikado

-« Mikado Forever » compilation on « Le Village Vert »

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Sarandon : The Completist's Library (wrath records or hhbtm)

As a kick-off for the week-end, let’s push the PAUSE button for club-orientated hyp-bands à la Klaxons, Shitdisco & New Young Pony Club and let’s try to concentrate on something more flailing and sharp: Sarandon is here for us at the right time with those 28 songs compiling all their four 7”s, 28 tiny post-punk influenced pieces (think Gang of four, Wire,…). It couldn’t be best described than “a contemporary clean-cut Josef K driven by Television melodico-intellectualism”. Got it ? Get it ! HERE !

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Peachy Little Secrets

Peachy Little Secrets...a fruit records compilation

Third release for beloved Fruit records label, and this time it is a special world tour trip for twee boys & girls, featuring unreleased tracks, unsigned stuff, Asia’s fine fleur, classic international acts and pure discoveries, old or new : bands from fruit catalogue (Serenaide, Ferns), popular asian acts (Mocca, Annemarie - see video below -, The Marshmallow Kisses, My Little Airport with the wonderful demo of “Je pense à toi” becoming “Japan ‘Sut Gua”), swedish acts (Ingenting from Labrador label and too-short-living band The Castavetes), well-known international pop bands ( Lucksmiths from Australia, La Casa Azul from Spain, My Favorite from USA), totally unknown – as far as I’m concerned-  asian outfits (the very funny Odfellows, Sally Faerie, 1900 Yesterday, Couple, My Writes, Purplepaige, the Monophones), promising brazilian act Luisa Mandou Um Beijo - see great video below - and finally, Little Name from UK, a talented one-man project previously heard on Indiepages demo section. The most heterogeneous AND homogeneous comp of the year…get it now in the fruit basket !


==> Annemarie : "Apple"

Luisa Mandou Um Beijo : "Amarelinha"

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Blam Blam Blam


Blam Blam Blam : “There is no Depression in New-Zealand” (7” on Propeller – 1981)


The lightning-existence of the band BLAM BLAM BLAM  is deeply linked to both musical and political New-Zealand History. Born in 1980 from the ashes of The Wizzkids an The Plague, at a golden time and in a country where many independent labels (Ripper, Reaction, Propeller, REM, Flying Nun…) were coming to life – after a moribund decade -, the trio quickly signed to Propeller Records. Behind their first eponym EP, they released the single “There is no Depression in New-Zealand”, a song that became an almost-national anthem during the 1981 Anti-Springbok Tour  protests and riots. Shortly after their 1982 debut Album, the band sadly disintegrated following a serious van crash. It is beyond question Blam Blam Blam  highly influenced all of the next-to-come-world-breaking NZ indie scene…


Sources :



-          “It’s Bigger than Both of Us” NZ singles 1979-82 (Propeller)

-          Simon Grigg Website

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Mirafiori : No Podemos Volver A Casa (Autopop)

It’s been 4 years since the first and only Mirafiori EP, produced by Guille Milkyway (La Casa Azul), saw the light on Annika Records (now extinguished label).  After a long delay ( see  story HERE), this is the debut album for Nacho Fernandez’ project. Melancholia in the –Spanish- verb, humbleness in the art, grace in the –sometimes jangling -chords, this is not only a good early-Trembling Blue Stars’ inspired piece, but also a truly consistent original work.

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Marsmobil : Minx ( Compost / G-stone)

Munich-based multi-instrumentist Roberto Di Gioia is known for his collaborations with Console and The Notwist and has got a huge jazz and classical pedigree. This is the second album for his project Marsmobil, clearly influenced by the likes of Portishead & Air (should I say Barry and Gainsbourg). These 11 space-electronica-trip-pop moments are made of visionary smooth-skinned melodies, magnified at times by Martine Rojine’s crystal-cut voice. This will most certainly calm down all your worries.



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la Variété by Weekend



la Variété by Weekend (Rough Trade 1982 - Reedition on Cherry Red 2006)

La Variété” is the French term for diversity and this is what this classic album is all about… Back in 1982, following the mysterious dissolution of Young Marble Giants, while the Moxham Bros reunite as “The Gist”, Alison Statton forms WEEKEND with Simon Booth and Spike. The result is “LA VARIETE”, a sort of brilliant improvisation combining strings, afro-rythms, lite jazz and atmospheric moods, a total counterpoint to the minimalist YMG masterpiece “Colossal Youth”. This is not the first time the album is reedited on CD (Rough Trade & Vinyl Japan did it before) but the wondrous idea here is to add as bonus tracks the demos of 3 songs (sounding very YMG !) plus the great 7” and 12” preceding the album (A view from her Room, Past Meets Present, Drum Beat for Baby,…). Tasty return in the past.

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Clinic : Visitations (Domino)

The surgical crew is back for operation n° 5. Many of the instruments and formulas stay unchanged – still very CLINIC! - but, at times, some new devices make a conspicuous appearance: a strongly marked “garage” sound and saturated psychedelic backgrounds...Although perfect achievements of operation 1 “first EP's compilation” and operation 2 “Internal Wrangler” are out of reach for the time being, the “masks” are moving forward in a very interesting direction again... and that's great news !

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