At hiapop Blog we make no excuses for thinking that Feral Five are pretty damned good. Kat and Drew have brought us three stonking singles this year in Strung Out, 3D and the current Angel Road and show no signs of letting taking their feet off the pedals.
Asked for the 2014 Top 10 they were only too pleased to accept the challenge.
Adrian Thaws - Tricky
Always been fans since the first album Maxinquaye, which is one of our all time top ten faves. We absolutely adore his electro-sass (yes we coined that one). Tricky’s lyrics and beats combine like a depth charge.
Commercial Zone 2014 – Keith Levene
Keith’s brand-new version of the ‘lost’ PiL album is a sonic safari spanning dark disco, cinematic beats, orchestral hooks and more – features John Robb samples too.
Divide and Exit – Sleaford Mods
Brilliant and brutal, with scalpel-sharp lyrics and take-no-prisoners beats. Tracks like The Corgi and Tied Up In Nottz are on repeat, but Tiswas is a great one for the dance floor, and the vinyl’s in Kat’s DJ box. Amazing seeing them at the 100 Club this year.
LA Spark – Wrangler
Heavy, hypnotic and electronic with attitude, this album pins you to the wall from the first notes of Theme From Wrangler. Every band should have a theme! Wrangler are a bit of a supergroup, with Phil Winter of Tunng and Lone Taxidermist, producer and John Foxx collaborator Benge, and Stephen Mallinder who was in Cabaret Voltaire. They previewed some new tunes at a recent gig and it looks like the next album’s going to be great too.
LP1 - FKA twigs
The sound of this is so different and it surprised and intrigued us more when she said that when she was younger “I only listened to punk, Siouxsie and the Banshees [...] and then I found my own way of playing punk”. We liked that a lot and felt she was kindred because we always take the punk approach to making and playing. This album has a real pop sensibility in the best sense with an intelligent and sparse use of electronica, which gives it a real edge.
Noah (music from the motion picture) - Clint Mansell
Been a fan of Clint Mansell’s forever. This is a huge score, and Clint – composer and formerly in Pop Will Eat Itself - is our go to for film music. We saw Clint perform pieces from his career at The Barbican in London with the Sonus Quartet – a special treat for Drew who’s also a composer, and created the score for an award-winning indie film.
The Best Day - Thurston Moore
As a kid Drew saw Sonic Youth supported by Mud Honey just before the Nirvana/Sub Pop Grunge explosion into the mainstream. So many of these early Grunge bands owe Thurston Moore a debt. Despite leading the way with that east coast art punk sound, Youth’s Moore never rested on his laurels, and experimentation and joy are still woven into the fabric of his new stuff. Love it.
Trick - Kele
Kele’s follow up to ‘The Boxer’, which was an absolutely inspirationally produced album. Love the vibe, the intelligence and the production. Kele is a hero.
Unflesh – Gazelle Twin
We like an element of danger in the electronic department and Gazelle Twin (Elizabeth Bernholz) sounds like she could strip your flesh to the bone, on this bitter-sweet-creep album that ranges from experimental ambient to dance, with swirling themes of body horror. It’s just as brilliant and unsettling when she performs it live.
Can We Talk About This – Deux Furieuses
Duos have been making some of the most exciting music in 2014, and Sleaford Mods and garage punk stunners Slaves are just some of them. We’re going to break the rules here - blistering guitar and drums duo Deux Furieuses scorched our synapses with this single, which is from a soon-to-be-released album. We wanted to let you know ahead of time!
More on Feral Five here.