Lapland is the pseudonym of singer/songwriter Josh Mease. Born and raised in Brooklyn Mease has always found comfort in the solitude of his own thoughts, often preferring the landscapes within his mind’s eye over the bustle of the city that surrounds him. Lapland's debut UK single Unwise showcases Mease's knack for mixing various genres. One can hear the effect of the myriad of music styles and genres that have shaped Lapland from early synthesizer pioneers of the 1960′s and 70′s to French impressionist composers like Ravel and Debussy and 1970′s rock staples such as Fleetwood Mac.
If you are of a certain age and have a record collection full of albums by Kate Bush, Clannad, Everything but the Girl and Virginia Astley then you really should listen to the new album from London Grammar, a British indie pop trio consisting of Hannah Reid, Dot Major and Dan Rothman. Reid is the immediate strength here, she has the sort of voice that knocks your mind into neutral and makes you forget what it was you were doing the first time you hear it. It's a bit Kate Bush, a bit Judie Tzuke, a bit Tracey Thorn and altogether, utterly, hopelessly, lovely.
Harry Potter as Allen Ginsberg? Indeed. Actually that shouldn't come as such a shock because post-JK Daniel Radcliffe is developing into a pretty fine actor and it helps that you looks not unlike the young beat poet. Directed by John Krokidas Kill Your Darlings is his directorial debut and got its world premiere at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival where it received some very positive reactions.
If two years ago I has suggested that mobile phones would soon sport 6.4-inch screens and processors more powerful than laptops you would have laughed in my face. Hell, I'd have laughed in my face. But that is exactly what Sony's new Xperia Z Ultra is. For a phone the Ultra boasts an almost ludicrously high-end specification - 6.4-inch screen? Check. 2.2GHz quad-core CPU? Check. 1920 x 1080 display resolution? Check. Waterproof and dust resistant? Check. Cor blimey as they used to say.
Yesterday Apple announced two new iPhones. In years gone by that news would have riveted people to their seats, had crowds out in the streets chanting Steve Job's name and set the press all a-quiver. But this time around media coverage was remarkably muted as was the public reaction. Has Apple lost it's mojo? Is its kit simply no longer that exciting? Have we gotten blasé about new tech? Is Apple simply being beaten by the likes of Samsung whose Gear smartwatch pulled in the headlines last week? Should you give a monkey's about Apple's new iPhone handsets? Read on.
This years Frankfurt Motors Show was all about plug-in hybrids. You could hardly get between stands for falling over power cables left lying around to underline that fact that you could plug the car at the end of them into a wall socket to charge its batteries and get some zero-tailpipe emissions motoring done. Of course it wasn't all hybrids, but it was impossible to navigate the halls and not come away with the impression that in ten years time most of us will be driving cars we can charge like our mobile phones even if they still have petrol or diesel engines under the bonnet.
Like Hoover, Jaffa Cake and Airfix the word Kindle has become synonymous with eBook readers despite there being a number of other devices available from the likes of Kobo, Nook and Sony. Now the most popular of them all, the backlit Kindle Paperwhite, has had a major overhaul which promises a host of new features and an all new display. Is that enough for the Paperwhite to keep its crown as King of the eReaders?
I've never been quite sure what the Arctic Monkeys were all about. When they first broke back in 2006 they were clearly an indi band but then in 2009 they turned to Josh Homme to produce their new album. Under the guidance of the Queens of the Stone Age frontman that they performed a stylistic u-turn with 2009's Humbug, ditching the indie sound of their first two albums for a much darker, more ominous rock soundscape. So is AM more of the 2006 or 2009 Monkey's. Well, it's 2009 again, and then some.
With a dedicated fan base, a European tour supporting L.A Guns and offers from half a dozen record labels under their belt, Damn Dice is about to release a new 6 track EP called Wild ‘N’Ready. Relatively new to the music scene (the band formed in 2011), Damn Dice have quickly gained respect among music fans, musicians and critics alike with positive notices flooding in even from big names like Vince Neil of Mötley Crüe and Beau Hill of Beau Hill Productions (Alice Cooper, Europe, Warrant, and even Stevie Nicks!).
Taking as their influences such modern and classic bands as Bon Jovi, All American Rejects and Skid Row, The Brink has certainly mastered a vibrant, kick-ass rock and roll sound. Knocking out ballsy, head-banging rock ballads-perhaps better suited to a stadium and accompanied by bright lights and a healthy dose of pyrotechnics- they've already built themselves a hearty fan-base on both a local and national level.
Every Saturday we'll be posting a music video by a new and upcoming band that we thinks deserve your attention for at least four minutes. We kick off with the video for Campfire by the Satellite Stories. Campfire is the first single from the band's second album which is due for release in November.
Check out below the video for some UK tour dates later this month and in the New Year.
Calling an artist "the new" someone can often be a kiss of death but after the first play of Joy of Nothing I immediately thought "blimey, the new Van Morrison!". Joy of Nothing is actually Foy Vance's second album, the first, Hope, was released all the way back in 2007. Since then he's released the odd EP but nothing really substantive. You could have been forgiven for thinking he'd given up on the day job. Has the wait been worth it? Hell yes, the new album is quite simply superb.
1945 was a pivotal year in British history. The unity that carried Britain through the war allied to the bitter memories of the inter-war depression led to a vision of a better, fairer, more just society. The spirit of the age was to be our brother's and our sister's keeper. Director Ken Loach has used footage from Britain's regional and national film archives, alongside sound recordings and contemporary interviews to create a rich political and social narrative.
We like to champion new British talent here at My Dad Rocks and Caleidra fits that bill to a tee. Still only just 17 this young lady has already been the subject of some pretty heavy coverage from the mainstream media and got her first break after her GCSE music coursework led to her being spotted performing on TV by producer John McLaughlin, famous for his work with 911, Busted and Westlife. McLaughlin, in his own words, "decided he just had to work with her”.
Smartwatches are all the rage at the moment. Wrist-mounted Bluetooth adjuncts to your smartphone the idea is that can use them to read e-mail, check incoming caller IDs and even access your apps all while leaving your precious phone in bag or pocket. It's not a new idea, Sony has been pitching its LiveView and SmartWatch devices for a few years now and there are numerous efforts from independents, many KickStarter funded. To be frank all have been pretty poor. But now the really big boys are getting in on the game. Apple is rumoured to be working on an iWatch while Samsung has just announced the Galaxy Gear.
Spain is not the first place you think of as the home of inventive indie bands but that is precisely where The Dirt Tracks hail from and their new single is rather interesting not just from a music perspective. The first cut from their forthcoming debut album Kaleidoscope has been produced by David Giménez Valiente and blends two songs into one. One via the left stereo track, the other via the right. Strange huh? But stay with me.
This is the first in a new occasional series where My Dad Rocks scribblers are invited to knock together a brief introduction to a recording artist they love but think criminally unknown here in the UK. Our resident music expert Jim gets the ball rolling with a look at American country-rock singer Chris Knight.
Chris Knight is a country rock singer/songwriter from the tiny mining town of Slaughters in Kentucky whose music has often invited comparisons with the likes of Steve Earle, John Prine and even Bruce Springsteen.
If by the artists they have supported shall ye know them then 19-year old Gabriella Jones is someone to keep an eye on because her most recent recent support gig was opening for Beyonce at the LG Arena in Birmingham. Since starting to sing professionally Jones has also performed alongside Rihanna, The Killers, Bryan Adams and Bon Jovi. And she's found time to release an EP and double A-side single while working with the renowned producer John McLaughlin. Busy girl.
For anyone who travels overseas a lot a dual-SIM phone can be a real benefit because you can divert your data through a local carrier while still taking calls on your regular, roaming number. This is particularly handy with modern smartphones as there is nothing worse than stepping off a plane in parts foreign only to lobotomize your all-singing, all-dancing device by turning the data feed off. But let us say you want a dual-SIM smartphone with a big screen but you only have £200 to play with. You probably think you've no chance, but Archos has just the phone for you in the 50 Platinum.
Unless you really, really know your cars spotting the difference between the original Range Rover Sport and a Range Rover proper was a damnably difficult task. Even when the two were parked side-by-side it wasn't easy. Second time around though and it's a different story. In large part that's down to the Range Rover Evoque which is selling like hot cakes and clearly shows that a Range Rover-badged motor with a touch of style is an attractive offer even if the price is a bit on the high side. So it's perhaps not too surprising what what we have in the Mk. 2 Range Rover Sport is a car based on the Range Rover and sharing more than passing visual similarity to the funky Evoque. As a recipe that certainly works for me.