THE LEGENDARY BANG Mozzer is Dead 7" (Old Bad Habits)
Four live tracks on gold vinyl from this early 1990s German band who had releases on the Marsh Marigold label, and also appeared on Mind the Gap/Season Records' International Pop compilation 7" alongside The Sugargliders, Red Sleeping Beauty, and the one-off Field Mice offshoot The Yesterday Sky, which is where I first heard them. This single was planned right at the start of Old Bad Habits, and given the catalogue number OBH 004; after some delay it has finally been released. The title track was written in 1990 and performed at a 2013 reunion gig celebrating the 25th anniversary of Marsh Marigold, while the other three tracks feature the original line-up, from a gig circa 1991.
Mozzer is Dead speaks for all the indie kids who felt betrayed by Morrissey: "All the good times we had are gone now Mozzer is dead". The song has the classic indiepop sound expected for the era in which it was written: melancholic, thoughtful pop accompanied by a Field Mice-ish melodic bass line and guitars that rattle, chug and swirl. Last Night is lo-fi buzzsaw pop in best late 80s style. Male and female singers belt out a super-catchy 60s-tinged tune with lots of ba-ba-bas, backed by squalling ramshackle noise. This would have sounded right at home on 53rd & 3rd or Subway back in the 80s. Bitterness is raggedy lo-fi pop with clattering drums, while Louise Brooks is sweet pop juxtaposed with a big noisy drum roll, the piece lasting just a few seconds.
Pure nostalgic fun, full of DIY spirit, so great! Limited to 200 hand numbered copies, with double-sided wraparound sleeve, sticker and badge. Get it at oldbadhabitslabel.bandcamp.com
DARK MATTERS In Search of Something Beautiful 12" (Old Bad Habits)
The Old Bad Habits Label is mostly known for noisy indiepop with a DIY punk spirit, but they will occasionally surprise us with a complete outlier such as this. Dark Matters is the project of Greek electronic artist Vaggelis Mourelatos, who is joined here by various guest vocalists and musicians. This EP features five tracks written as part of a soundtrack during Vaggelis' stay in Finland. The title track sets the ethereal, soaring soprano voice of Panagiota Tsiri to a combination of brooding soundscape and trance-inducing dancefloor pulse, along with hammered dulcimer that lends a world music feel to the piece, the overall sound coming across something like a mixture of Dead Can Dance and Enigma. Come Closer is a blend of neoclassical music and electronic pop with a dark, heady atmosphere, while Haunted brings together soulful pop and woozy, dreamlike electronica. Homeland is a kind of 21st century blues set to trip-hop beats and flowing sax. The instrumental piece Outside closes the EP with its combination of stark cinematic soundscaping, dancey electronica and hypnotically repeating melody. The music here blends alternative and mainstream influences in a way that never sounds incongruous, and displays a great deal of originality and talent. Limited to 180 copies, available at oldbadhabitslabel.bandcamp.com
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