Does the name Plastiscines ring a bell to you?
Let me jog your memory: back in 2009, the all-girl French rock band became the first to sign to NYLON magazine’s record label, released their second album “About Love”, and even nabbed a guest spot on Gossip Girl. Since then, the group downsized to a trio, added synths to their sound and continued to release new music. Their most recent release is a covers EP sponsored by Paco Rabanne perfume Black XS. It’s an eclectic collection of slick and stylish reinterpretations of Lana Del Rey’s “Blue Jeans”, Air’s “Sexy Boy”, Sophie Ellis-Bextor’s “Murder On The Dancefloor”, Caroline Loeb’s ’80s hit “C’est la ouate”, and an acoustic version of Wham!’s “Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go”. If you like your bands to consist of guitar-rocking ladies (The Like, The Donnas, HAIM etc.), you should dig into this pronto. You can’t go wrong with some fun rock n’ roll with a French accent.
Listen to their new-wave take of Lana Del Rey’s “Blue Jeans” below. Cowbells included!
STREAM: Plastiscines – Blue Jeans (Lana Del Rey Cover)
I also quite enjoy their 2013 French single – the groovy “Comment faire”, whose video is a fun retro homage to American ’70s cop shows à la Charlie’s Angels.
WATCH: Plastiscines – Comment Faire
As you know, Record Store Day is on 4/20 this weekend. and it’s a great date to support local record stores, buy exclusive new releases and just have fun appreciating music. One of the most coveted RSD releases this year is Astralwerks’ limited edition 20/20 Vinyl Box Set to celebrate their 20th anniversary. They’re one of my favorite labels, and this release is a great time capsule of all the great acts on their roster over the years. Included are exclusives or rarely heard tracks from Air, Hot Chip, Kings Of Convenience, The Chemical Brothers, Fatboy Slim, Basement Jaxx, Kraftwerk, Sia, Empire Of The Sun, Diamond Rings, Gold Fields and more, each pressed on 20 beautiful flexi discs. Only 1,250 copies were pressed and hand-numbered, so you know it’s strictly limited! Lucky for you, thanks to the nice people at Astralwerks, we have ONE copy to give away, in case they’re all sold out at your favorite local store.
Find out after the jump how YOU can win one of these amazing box sets.
Tomorrow’s World is the unlikely musical pairing of Jean-Benoît Dunckel (Air) and Lou Hayter (New Young Pony Club). Even though their output totals only one song and a half so far, there’s something about them that really intrigues me. The pair makes spooksome, claustrophobic pop-noir specifically designed for night driving. Their first track, “So Long My Love” would be the perfect soundtrack for “Drive”, were it directed by David Lynch. The production is quite inspired, weaving Lou’s detached, deadpan vocals into the dark, bass-heavy soundscape. The psychedelic, distorted guitar freakout bits take some time to get used to, but they do add a raw edge to the song. It’s a highly stylized, conceptual affair, polished but minimal at the same time. There’s an excessive 7-minute version knocking about but I much prefer the edit below.
STREAM: Tomorrow’s World – So Long My Love
A preview of another track, “Drive” (they are not subtle aren’t they), can be heard on Youtube.
I would also like to take this opportunity to remind you of this underrated dead-eyed disco gem from Lou Hayter’s previous project The New Sins back in 2008. It helps that she’s very videogenic, too.
This 2-disc compilation has recently been released in the UK. The apt timing has a lot to do with the X Factor hype, no doubt. Similar to the Live Lounge series, it’s a mix of live performances and covers originally performed on Dermot’s show on BBC Radio 2, with 20 tracks on each disc. There’s something for everyone here, but obviously, I’m more interested in the covers offered here. The Divine Comedy’s cover of MGMT’s “Time To Pretend” truly stands out as my favorite. Neil adds his baroque touch and truly makes it his own. It’s probably my favorite MGMT cover after Jónsi’s. Another interesting choice is Lisa Hannigan’s “Playground Love”. Imogen Heap’s haunting piano cover of “Thriller” is bound to be a Halloween playlist essential. There are also other solid choices, like Fyfe Dangerfield covering Girls Aloud’s “Call The Shots”, Ellie Goulding doing Dolly Parton’s “Jolene”, Athlete tackling La Roux’s “Bulletproof” and more. If you’re a fan of acoustic live performances, and would like to get these in high quality to replace those radio rips, then I suggest giving this compilation a listen. Sample some picks after the jump.