Corasandel and Become The Sky...
dream pop, shoegaze, ambient or just great music?
Long Live Vinyl magazine, certainly the best monthly devoted to all things LP related, recently published an article on the essential ‘dream pop’ albums. Being a cynical old git, my first reaction was that the piece felt like an attempt to shoehorn bands into a genre that didn’t really exist. But the more I thought about it the more this obsession with sub-dividing did actually make sense.
With the myriad of music websites available like Spotify, Bandcamp and Soundcloud you are in danger of being swamped in music. It’s never been easier for budding musicians to get their music out into the public domain. So how do you narrow down the choice and work out what is for you? Perhaps the need to sub-divide to the nth degree is actually the answer. In this piece I am covering two bands, Corasandel and Become The Sky. I have the feeling that without this labelling I would have missed out on hearing them and that would have been a big shame.
Corasandel – All The Hours Are One
Corasandel is an ambient-shoegaze band centred around the writing/producing partnership of Jimmy Osborne and Mark Merrifield who live, write and record out in the Lincolnshire Wolds in the remote East of England. ‘All The Hours Are One’ is their first EP and ticks plenty of the fuzzy guitar music boxes. The EP kicks off with my favourite track ‘Unison Mix’ which has a powerful ethereal sound to it and OK I will say it, it sounds like what I imagine dream pop to be! It’s the chiming guitars that get me, reminding me of Faith era Cure. I have a feeling that Unison Mix would sound really good live, pile up the reverb and delay, ramp up the volume and it will be a track you can really lose yourself in.
The EP is excellent work and is available now digitally and on CD released by Old Tin Box Recordings. Head to the Corasandel Bandcamp site to pick up a copy. If you happen to be near Louth in Lincolnshire UK, then head to the Off The Beaten Tracks record shop where you can buy the CD. If you like bands like The Cure, Cocteau Twins, Jesus and Mary Chain and Spacemen 3 then this will be for you.
Become The Skies – Violent Skies
It was a simple Twitter follow that pushed Become The Skies into my musical world. The Liverpool based group have just released ‘Violent Skies’ the first track off their debut Aurora EP. Social media works guys! The group is made up of Anne Marie Howard on vocals, Mike Simms on bass, drummer Marcus Mayes, Joel Sawyer on guitars and credit to Natalie Townsend who wrote the lyrics to Violent Skies.
Violent Skies has traditional indie guitar music in its veins and the track jangles along with power and purpose. I do particularity like Anne Marie’s voice, she sounds laid back, stylish and has a nonchalance that all good female indie vocalists have. My first reaction was that she sounded like a Debbie Harry for the Bandcamp generation.
The EP is released on the 31 August, and if the other tracks live up to Violent Skies it will be well worth supporting. Head to the Become the Skies Bandcamp site to have a listen and to pick up a copy.
So to answer my opening question, Corasandel and Become the Sky – dream pop, shoegaze, ambient or just great music? It doesn’t really matter what you label music as, music magazines can sub divide as much as they want, particularly if those musical tags act as signposts to draw you in. Ultimately it’s the quality of music that is important. That’s what makes you investigate further, buy the records and go to the gigs.
I hope you will investigate these groups further, please share this piece on social media, I would be very grateful. Let me know in the comments your favourite shoegaze band.