Category Archives: Mixes

Music Alliance Pact July 2014

New MAP! This month, we highlight Left Right Arms. Check it out, and a bunch more of great tunes from around the world, below.

Click the play button icon to listen to individual songs, right-click on the song title to download an mp3, or grab a zip file of the full 24-track compilation through Dropbox here.

JAPAN: Make Believe Melodies
Left Right ArmsRest
Rest is a song that comes across as though it was recorded under blankets, like the driving sonic aim was to imagine what someone breathing on your neck sounded like. Fitting, considering Left Right Arms records everything from his bedroom in Tokyo, the close quarters coming across clearly in this woozy, ultimately vulnerable moment.

ARGENTINA: Zonaindie
Los TirosAutocontrol
In the past weeks we’ve been listening to Denso y Moderno, the first album by Los Tiros, in a non-stop loop. This band from Quilmes, a city in Greater Buenos Aires, delivers a pop-rock sound with lots of synthesizers and optimistic lyrics. The album has 11 tracks, all potential hits, and Autocontrol is one of them.

AUSTRALIA: Who The Bloody Hell Are They?
A Dead Forest IndexCast Of Lines
Cast Of Lines is the new 12″ by Melbourne’s A Dead Forest Index. Released recently through Pop Noire (the label run by Savages’ Jehnny Beth), title track Cast Of Lines is an expansive, meditative piece – a precursor for the band’s unique sound palette which has been praised abroad.

CANADA: Ride The Tempo
TMPLVoyij
TMPL are a relatively new electro-pop duo from Toronto made up of Kevin O’Brien and singer-songwriter Eli Andreas. By new, I mean they have this one song out called Voyij that takes you on an expansive journey of sounds that gets more exciting at every corner.

CHILE: Super 45
HistéricosMisplaced, Displaced
They chose the right name to express their no-limits energy and rage. Histéricos is a four-piece rock band that always trusts in a good melody and have some clever things to say. At the end of 2013 they released their debut album Misplaced, Displaced (Algo Records) and here we present the title track dedicated to “the ones who get it wrong. The losers, the outsiders. To those who suffered loss and regret. To those who question why”, as they write in their manifesto.

COLOMBIA: El Parlante Amarillo
Los ElefantesYo Soy Un Gigoló
The life of the Colombian capital is reflected by the Jamaican music, mainly ska, that Los Elefantes have made ​​for more than 18 years. Feeling independence as a way of life, they are releasing their fourth album, Grandes Exitos de Otros, from which we present the song Yo Soy Un Gigoló, a classic version of Just A Gigolo/I Ain’t Got Nobody, with the lyrics touched by irony.

DENMARK: All Scandinavian
Blaue BlumeIn Disco Lights
Released a few months back, Blaue Blume’s official EP debut, Beau & Lorette, is bold, ambitious and almost always compelling, not least thanks to mighty songs like Lost Sons Of Boys and MAP exclusive download In Disco Lights.

DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: La Casetera
TipiHop ProjectSuéltame Que Bailo Solo
TipiHop Project’s mission is to blend Dominican native genres with modern electronic and hip-hop rhythms. Anyone who’s had the opportunity to dance a fast-paced merengue would argue that is nearly impossible to slow it down, but the guys behind TipiHop found a way in Suéltame Que Bailo Solo, the instrumental opener of their first album. The namesake LP has been brewing for almost three years, but now they’re ready to show their musical richness.

ECUADOR: Plan Arteria
Sweet SandraNakkked
Sweet Sandra is a trio based in Quito who use distortion, electronic bits and punk. Their first release, Nasty Disco, is an album of 10 songs. Nakked has heartbreaking screams between the twisted outbursts of drum machine.

FINLAND: Glue
Cats Of TransnistriaSan Francisco
Formed earlier in the year, Cats Of Transnistria is an exciting blend of dream-pop vocals and fuzzy, psyched guitar and keys by the duo of Henna Emilia Hietamäki and Tuomas Alatalo. The band has just released its first recording produced by Black Lizard’s guitarist/vocalist Paltsa-Kai Salama.

FRANCE: Your Own Radio
AndreaMore To Me
From Paris’ indie electronic scene, Andrea plays beats like a surgeon – meticulously. More To Me is the perfect song to chill out to in bed on a Sunday morning. Andrea is also the kind of crazy guy who has a project to produce a sample each day during a month – take a listen to Day 4, which samples Sam Smith.

GREECE: Mouxlaloulouda
Pete SunOcean (You)
Drawing influence from sun, sea, urban life and relationships, Pete Sun’s sublime third EP, Phantom Express, contains three shimmering lo-fi, romantic dream-pop songs to hold close to your heart. With his simple, poetic, yet sensitive lyrics and an intimate voice that’s as if he’s whispering a secret into your ear, Pete Sun creates a beautiful scenery to lose yourself in.

INDONESIA: Deathrockstar
NapolleonRendezvous
After a long musical journey, young Bayu Andrianto’s decision to put reverb on vocals and guitar resulted in raw, space-rock songs. They have been talked about amongst music enthusiasts in Indonesia for the past few months, with hotly-anticipated performances and an album to look forward to.

IRELAND: Hendicott Writing
BloomsIf I
Blooms’ euphoric yet mellow style of ambient electronica is the brainchild of Louise Cunnane, an Irish woman based in London. The If EP features toned-down flow, soaring soundscapes and stunning vocals, recalling the 5am bliss-out at the end of a manic beach party. If I, the free-to-download EP’s standout track, builds on subtle R&B influences to create a memorable early effort. Cunnane’s delicate potential is abundant and beautiful.

MALTA: Stagedive Malta
TroffaHamra y Los MechonesDonde Estás Tú
TroffaHamra (Ruth Abela) is a Maltese singer-songwriter who went travelling to Barcelona in 2010 and ended up staying there. Not much later she formed her band TroffaHamra y Los Mechones, in which she sings and plays guitar, together with four Catalan musicians. Together, and due to their different musical backgrounds, they created an original sound. TroffaHamra’s songwriting is fresh and sincere, and influenced by life experiences and strong emotions. The style of the band sways between swing, bossa nova, folk and Western ska – a mixture of sounds, languages and moods.

MEXICO: Red Bull Panamérika
NavukodonozorgThe Goat Of Zachary
He may not be the king of Babylon, but he could well take the throne of Mexican electronica. He may not be named after Morpheus’ rebellion ship in The Matrix, but his music will surely take you on a trip through a decadent post-industrial underworld. Hailing from Veracruz in the Gulf of Mexico, Navukodonozorg unleashes a work full of dirty bass, complex rhythms and nonsense melodies. Take the ‘red pill’ and submerge in this fabulous futuristic wonderland.

PERU: SoTB
CatervasAtemporal
Catervas is one of Peru’s most beloved and essential bands. Their long career, embodied in three albums, has contributed some great indie rock with melodies full of excitement and inspiration. This year the band will release their fourth album; Atemporal is its first single, a nostalgic song that honors the classic sound of Catervas.

PORTUGAL: Posso Ouvir Um Disco?
MoullinexLove Magnetic
Moullinex is the project of Luis Clara Gomes, a DJ with a remarkable body of work as a producer. His first album as Moullinex, Flora, was released in 2012 and, following two EPs in 2013, a new album is due at the end of this year, which Love Magnetic is an appetizer for. When not working as Moullinex, Luis keeps himself busy remixing other artists (Cut Copy, Sébastien Tellier, Two Door Cinema Club, WhoMadeWho) and managing the label DiscoTexas which he co-founded.

PUERTO RICO: Puerto Rico Indie
fAiI Thought The World
fAi is a new project from producer/composer Hector “Stonetape” Hernández and singer Beatriz Faísca. They recently released their first single, the catchy and sweet I Thought The World, a generous slice of perfect summer indie-pop that promises great things from the duo. Stonetape continues to demonstrate his studio chops throughout the song, achieving a confident and measured production, while Beatriz truly surprises with a voice equally mature and flirtatious.

ROMANIA: Babylon Noise
The Boy Who Cried WolfIt’s Just A Rebel, Sir!
The Boy Who Cried Wolf started their activity when members of two local bands (CHESTER and Breathelast) from Bucharest collided, with a mission to write some tunes that would better react to their primal needs to play wild, fast-paced metal combined with hardcore/punk vibes. In 2013, The Boy Who Cried Wolf released their first debut record, Bad Time Stories, available from Bandcamp as a pay-what-you-want download.

SCOTLAND: The Pop Cop
ForeignfoxYoghurt
No matter how much you think you’re ready for it, the song Foreignfox introduced themselves to the world with, Yoghurt, still knocks you sideways. The raw, stomach-knotting emotion of Jonny Watt’s struggle to come to terms with his father’s cancer diagnosis is unravelled in lyrics of rare candour, backed with some sweeping guitar work and a suitably tear-inducing promo video. Foreignfox’s debut EP, We Float Like Sinking Ships, is available on Bandcamp.

SOUTH KOREA: Indieful ROK
MessgramMy Funeral
Messgram markets themselves as a modern heaviness hailing from Korea. They put out their first EP a few months ago and recently finished third in the Korean leg of the Redbull Live On The Road competition. With a female vocalist, the style often reminisces the popular gothic metal-influenced bands of the early 00s, but rather than sounding dated, Messgram gets a special edge by blending it with post-hardcore. My Funeral perfectly exhibits this exciting combination.

SPAIN: Musikorner
Cumbres CarrascosaMinimum Sacrifice
Cumbres Carrascosa is the side-project of Miguel Cámara, from The Fruhstucks, and one of the nation’s breakthrough artists of 2014. His music is a blend of psychedelia and the-darkest-chillwave-ever, as you can tell by listening to Minimum Sacrifice, a mesmerizing yet unsettling tune.

UNITED STATES: We Listen For You
ConveyorTheme XIII (Edit)
Brooklyn’s Conveyor has recently released a fascinating double LP where they reimagine the score for the cult film THX 1138. These expansive soundscapes creep into your brain and create the most perfect moments of sonic serenity.

Tofubeats Shares Mix With Diplo And Friends On The BBC

Kobe’s Tofubeats made a mix for the BBC show Diplo And Friends, which you can listen to above! Don’t usually share mixes here, but this one is really good and features so many artists we love around here (Seiho! Avec Avec! Pa’s Lam System! Parkgolf! bo en! So many more!) that it seems like a nice one to drop in on Sunday evening.

Just know that’s not how you pronounce Kobe.

Music Alliance Pact June 2014

Geez time flies…already June, and that means the June Music Alliance Pact is out. Just in time for the summer we feature Okinawa’s StillSound this month. Check it out!

Click the play button icon to listen to individual songs, right-click on the song title to download an mp3, or grab a zip file of the full 27-track compilation through Dropbox here.

JAPAN: Make Believe Melodies
StillSoundTowns
Based out of the lovely capital city of Okinawa, StillSound makes rubbery electronic music taking sonic cues from the likes of Toro y Moi, and latest song Towns is a slippery bit of funk that moves at an easy-breezy pace perfect for the start of summer. Despite the beachside vibe, Towns conceals a bleeding heart, the vocals revealing far deeper emotions than simply chilling out.

ARGENTINA: Zonaindie
TemperQuitapenas
Temper is an instrumental rock band with influences that encompass tango, jazz, surf-rock, Hindu movie soundtracks and psychedelic music. This catchy track is from their third album, Clitoxismo: 10 Neurotransmisiones En Círculos, released last year by La Boca Se Te Haga Un Lago, a local independent label which specializes in instrumental music.

AUSTRALIA: Who The Bloody Hell Are They?
KučkaUnconditional
Perth native Kučka, aka Laura Jane Lowther, makes tinsel-y RnB that falls somewhere between the smooth, subdued sounds of 90s-era Janet Jackson and the cartoonish decadence of K-pop. With her vocals featured on two tracks from A$AP Rocky’s debut album, LONG.LIVE.A$AP, and with a brand new EP due out later this year, Kučka is definitely an artist to keep your eye on.

BRAZIL: Meio Desligado
Russo PassapussoParaquedas
Russo Passapusso, the lead singer of BaianaSystem, is about to release his first solo album. In single Paraquedas he displays a deep appreciation of Brazil’s musical roots. It’s a mixture of samba rock, funk and hip hop to make you dance.

CANADA: Ride The Tempo
Once A TreeHowling
Hayden John Wolf and Jayli Wolf may show some Europe electronica inspiration in Howling but the duo are indeed from Toronto. Each time Once A Tree drop a track on SoundCloud, they deliver with creative vocals and eargasmic production. Howling proves to be their best tune yet, experimenting with trap-like beats and chilling atmosphere.

CHILE: Super 45
AdelaidaO Sea No Mundial
Adelaida, a trio from Valparaíso, are members of the new brood that’s renewing the Chilean independent rock scene. In their debut album Monolito, they reclaim the best moments from the 90s: grunge’s anger, shoegaze’s walls of sound and the versatility of experimental noise.

COLOMBIA: El Parlante Amarillo
Flying BananasFunk No Name
Based on the legend that tells the story of a man who committed suicide by jumping off a seventh floor disguised as a banana, as you can see in this video, Bogotá quintet Flying Bananas make a musical tribute of the deceased using funk, jazz and hip hop. These seasoned musicians have no fear and float between genres with the power of bass, samplers and percussion, as we can hear in Funk No Name.

DENMARK: All Scandinavian
The OlympicsLeaves
Art-pop quintet The Olympics are in the process of following up on their debut album Mother and Limbo EP with 10 songs in 10 months (to be released as an album later). You can check out the first two, Monument and 4U, while the third great one, Leaves, is a MAP exclusive download.

DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: La Casetera
Franny & ZooeyI Love You
I Love You is taken from Franny & Zooey’s new EP, Bottled Up And Ready To Go. Following the same line of influences as Heavenly, Go Sailor and Talulah Gosh, they exhibit strong pop melodies with some power structures and punk, reminiscent of the Ramones.

ECUADOR: Plan Arteria
SexoresHistorias De Frio
Historias De Frio, the second album by shoegaze and dream-pop band Sexores, flirts with distortion, ethereal wave and melancholy. The title track envelops the listener in a lethargic, mellow sweetness.

ENGLAND: Drowned In Sound
Lucy ClaireStille
Perhaps it’s obvious with a site name like Drowned in Sound, but we’re a sucker for a swell of strings that leaves you feeling suspended in a sea of melodies. Our love of classical may have begun with watching A Clockwork Orange as a child and blossomed with falling in love with Sigur Rós but my-oh-my is modern classical music on fire right now. Lucy Claire from London melds big strings and glorious electronics.

ESTONIA: Rada7.ee
Firejosé feat Sander MölderMas O Menos
Firejosé (aka Mark Stukis) is an artist born in Estonia and tempered by the jungles of Central America. His roots go deeper and influences run wider than the rainforests of Tortuguero, though. Similarities to Detroit Swindle and Joy Orbison have been drawn, but most recently Firejosé quenched the thirst for Baltic beats with live shows alongside Gold Panda and Bonobo. A well-kept secret from the hype machines, it is the unquenchable desire for deep, shuffled beats that keep Firejosé ablaze.

FINLAND: Glue
Saints Of WinterLullaby March
Inspired by the Finnish Lapland, songwriter Mikko Hautakangas came up with the songs that form the debut of his latest project Saints Of Winter, which is defined by three words: snow, melancholy and hope. The album, Bridges And Windmills, is an indie-folk affair in which songs come to life thanks to the vocals of lead singer Sari. You can pay as much as you wish to download it on Bandcamp. Here is the beautiful opener Lullaby March.

FRANCE: Your Own Radio
AamouroceanYuntekkem
Aamourocean is a​ ​mysterious​ ​indie producer. We don’t know much about him, but who cares? His song Yuntekkem is enthralling as the sampled army choir takes us by the hand to ​a tropical forest.​

GREECE: Mouxlaloulouda
OpsisAntigone
Based on deep drones, eerie noise, dislocated beats and classical vocal choruses from Byzantium and Renaissance, Opsis’ sublime double album Antigone/Persae conveys musically the eternal agonies of man as they are portrayed in the works of the tragic poets of the ancient world, Sophocles and Aeschylus. It is a personal contemplation on the events taking place in those two tragedies and the emotional variations and torments of their most substantial characters.

INDONESIA: Deathrockstar
CupumanikLuka Bernegara
Luka Bernegara (“Pain of Nationalism”) is a song about the dirty, bloody politics in Indonesia. The heavy distortion and angst displays a heavy influence of 90s grunge music. As one of the few bands left who label themselves grunge, they enjoy a strong following in Indonesia.

IRELAND: Hendicott Writing
Red SailWheel Your Wings Home
Built around winding, subtle folky melodies, Red Sail stand out above Ireland’s folk-pop masses. Wheel Your Wings Home is their latest single, a vocal-led rustic beauty backed by Damien Rice’s wonderful touring cellist Vyvienne Long. 2012′s harmony-drenched Paper Cutouts EP and lyrically nuanced follow up We Still Build Forts EP have already seen this unassuming project head across Europe; this delicate musical partnership is threatening to take flight.

ITALY: Polaroid
Yakamoto KotzugaAll These Things I Used To Have
Yakamoto Kotzuga is not Japanese. His real name is Giacomo Mazzucato and he is a 20-year-old Venice-based producer. His sound is influenced by Shlohmo, Shigeto, Gold Panda and Flying Lotus, just to name a few. He’s going to release an album on La Tempesta International and it will be great. But you should forget all these notions and just let his music vibrate and take you to the deepest regions of outer space.

MEXICO: Red Bull Panamérika
MontenegroBlackout
With melodic, heavy and catchy guitar riffs like The Cure, and deep vocals like Joy Division, you might think we are somewhere in 80s England. Not at all. Montenegro come from Mexico City, and Blackout sounds fresh without the trite of being too “innovative”. They’re noisy without turning their backs on melancholy (in fact, they just look down at their feet). This quartet embodies the spirit of DIY and seem to make music for their own joy, and fortunately also for ours.

PERU: SoTB
Los FilipzPositivo
Formed in 2004, Los Filipz make something called reggae power – a mix of funk, rock and reggae obviously. The band is promoting their second album Presente, which tries to create a link between people and the world around them.

PORTUGAL: Posso Ouvir Um Disco?
Bullet6830 Miles
Vladimir Orlov is the leader of Bullet. However, in reality, Orlov is just an alter-ego for the multi-instrumentalist, vocalist, composer and producer Armando Teixeira, who has visited us before in the Music Alliance Pact. 6830 Miles is taken from Cosmic Noise Vol. 1, the third album by Bullet, in which the vocals by Lili take center stage; the second volume will see Orlov’s vocals come to the fore. Bullet should please those into bands such as Air, Saint Etienne or Stereolab.

PUERTO RICO: Puerto Rico Indie
Dead HandsPerdido Sin Ti (Ricky Martin cover)
Ricky Martin is Puerto Rico’s premier international pop superstar. Indie Martin is a celebration of his career and musical legacy, reinterpreted by emerging artists from the county’s independent music scene. The full compilation will be made available online through Discos Diáspora in August, but you can listen to a new cover each Tuesday via PuertoRicoIndie.com during June and July. Noise and ambient producer Dead Hands is in charge of the third weekly single, an exclusively MAP download. His refreshing take on the fan-favorite Perdido Sin Ti reaches for the pop perfection of The Postal Service, with glitchy melodies and a driving beat that bolster the dual boy-girl vocals sung by Francisco Valls and La Nikko.

ROMANIA: Babylon Noise
Bohemian GrooveSanctuary
From hard rock to psychedelia and blues, Bohemian Groove is reminiscent of 70s rock bands such as Cream, Black Sabbath and Led Zeppelin. Sanctuary starts off softly, taking you to a magical place where a wise dog whispers truths of life in your ear, then culminates with Sabbath-like riffing and a mind-bending keyboard solo. It’s taken from the power trio’s debut album Event Horizon.

SCOTLAND: The Pop Cop
NievesWinter
Glasgow duo Nieves sure know how to make a stunning first impression. With a simple acoustic guitar/piano set-up they deliver debut song Winter with immaculate poise, an elegant sadness pervading as singer Brendan Dafters uses the changing of the seasons to tell the story of a relationship’s end. MAP exclusive download Winter and new single Symmetry (check it out on SoundCloud) are taken from Nieves’ debut EP, due out later this summer.

SOUTH KOREA: Indieful ROK
Hyun Lee YangIs Help On The Way?
Hyun Lee Yang made a name for himself as the leader and vocalist of emo-punk band 99anger. After a decade-and-a-half, 99anger disbanded in 2012 but Hyun Lee Yang continued to write songs and in May he finally released his first solo single. Is Help On The Way? is an excellent start: lyrics still in English, the band replaced by an acoustic guitar and a melody that lends itself well to repeated listening.

SPAIN: Musikorner
C.I.A.N.U.R.O.Purity
C.I.A.N.U.R.O. is the Spanish response to Kap Bambino, Crystal Castles or even Purity Ring. They are a trio formed by acid-synth lovers influenced mainly by synth-punk, witch house and post-rave. Their music is as dark and breathtaking as it gets, and Purity, taken from their second EP, is no exception.

UNITED STATES: We Listen For You
Bro. StephenThe Shape
The music of Bro. Stephen just seems to float. On The Shape, the listener is treated to a glider of a song, where Bro. Stephen elevates the craft of folk music to a visceral experience of changing tempos and gentle yet powerful vocals.

Music Alliance Pact May 2014

Music Alliance Pact for May 2014 is here! With summer right around the corner, I spotlighted a track from Kai Takahashi’s latest beat tape. Listen to it…and great music from all over the world…below.

MuClick the play button icon to listen to individual songs, right-click on the song title to download an mp3, or grab a zip file of the full 27-track compilation through Ge.tt here.

JAPAN: Make Believe Melodies
Kai TakahashiCannibal
The title is extremely misleading – Tokyo producer Kai Takahashi only has summer vibes in mind with this song, a short cut from a recently released mixtape of similarly cut-and-chopped beats. Cannibal is especially warm, a stuttering collection of vocals and island-ready sounds tumbling over one another into a fantastic shot of mid-June weather.

ARGENTINA: Zonaindie
Shaman y Los Pilares De La CreaciónTierna Oscuridad
Tierna Oscuridad is the opening track on Shaman y Los Pilares De La Creación’s second album, released by Concepto Cero, one of La Plata’s finest independent labels. You can hear the whole album via the band’s website. The song is also on the soundtrack for the film Arriba Quemando El Sol, so the sound prevails over the notes, creating a deep atmospheric musical environment.

AUSTRALIA: Who The Bloody Hell Are They?
YeoKobe
A little over a year ago, Melbourne’s Yeo gave his acoustic guitar the flick and turned to a new friend, the keytar. He had some success in 2013 with the dark, whirring Girl and now he’s back with Kobe, the second single from his forthcoming EP. It’s a big step up for the producer: a shining, ambitious pop song with brash synth stabs, jittery percussion and confident R’n’B vocals. Yeo played Canadian Music Week and some US shows this month. If he doesn’t break the North American market first time round, we reckon he’s got a promising future penning tunes for Justin Timberlake.

BRAZIL: Meio Desligado
Quarto NegroQuando o Mar Não Vem
Quarto Negro are about to release their second album and have just brought out a movie about their time in studio, called GRU-PDX. Quando o Mar Não Vem is taken from debut album Desconocidos, released in 2011, and shows the band’s melodic excellence and sensitivity.

CANADA: Quick Before It Melts
[MP.G]Black Mesa Rally Cry
[MP.G] My Pet Genius released Might Strike Satellite in 1996 to much critical acclaim. For the past 17 years they have been recording, mixing, switching studios, re-recording, scrapping and re-mixing hundreds of hours of music that will become the colossal double LP, Empire Of Light. A teaser EP called EMP01 reveals what’s to be expected when Empire Of Light finally arrives this fall.

CHILE: Super 45
Fernando MilagrosOtra Vida
Fernando Milagros embraces pop with synths, guitars and guests musicians on his fourth album, Nuevo Sol, a collection of songs about coming back home and going ahead with the truth. Otra Vida, the first single with Andean music arrangements, is the catchiest song on the record.

COLOMBIA: El Parlante Amarillo
MitúCri Cri
Renowned guitarist and producer Julian Salazar, a vital part of Bomba Estéreo, joins with percussionist Franklin Tejedor aka Lamparita to form Mitú, where somehow they pay tribute to Lamparita’s hometown, San Basilio de Palenque. Thus, the traditional rhythms are mixed with analog synthesisers to give a unique characteristic, totally danceable. In 2012 they released their album Potro, and in 2014 Mitú hits back again with Balnear, where the future and the jungle’s past are mixed, as we can hear in their track Cri Cri.

DENMARK: All Scandinavian
AnnasaidCollision
Four years on from their full-length debut, Jua, Annasaid released their second on April 28. Titled Rite De Passage there’s a coming of age tale here, but while the quartet has definitely matured in age, arrangements and songwriting, their guitar-on-chest indie-rock is as youthfully energetic as ever. Here’s the excellent first single Collision as a MAP exclusive download.

DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: La Casetera
Diego MenaIntolerante
Diego Mena continues to turn his wheels away from his roots in rock music and on to synth-pop delight. Even though he’s heavily influenced by the 80s , his newest songs sound more current than ever. Intolerante is the first single from his third album Cadáveres En El Closet, a hypnotic ensemble of melodies and smooth singing. The album is out now via Bandcamp.

ECUADOR: Plan Arteria
Nicola CruzNierika
Nicola Cruz is one of Ecuador’s most interesting producers. His work focuses on experimental music that mixes electronics with organic textures and traditional sounds.

ESTONIA: Rada7.ee
Badass YukiAmerica
Citing influences as varied as Burt Bacharach, The Jesus And Mary Chain and Britpop, Badass Yuki are a threesome on the verge of releasing their second album, Open Your Eyes To The Landmass, which is being pressed on vinyl by small family label Porridge Bullet.

FINLAND: Glue
PelotonsBlind Luck
Pelotons is a folk duo formed by Tina Kärkinen (Finnish) and Mike Gale (English), who began making music together at the end of last year and released a debut EP called Burrows. Blind Luck, a very laid-back, soft tune with great harmonies, is the first single from their first full-length, which will be available very shortly through Battle Worldwide Recordings.

FRANCE: Yet You’re Fired
La QuinteJ’ai Passé L’Âge
La Quinte is an up-and-coming rap act from Strasbourg composed of four MCs and a beatmaker. What started as a way to fill their free time while paying homage to their elders eventually became a serious project, and the crew has been more and more active and visible in the past few months. By combining old-school instrumentals with topical lyrics, La Quinte have found a unique blend that will surely make some heads turn in the coming months.

GREECE: Mouxlaloulouda
A Victim Of SocietyOnce Again
In their relentlessly brilliant debut album Distractions, A Victim Of Society craft eight intense, hammering and explosively airy rock’n’roll songs and wrap them in a bleary, beautiful package. With layers of fuzz-laced and feedback-laden guitars, raw, tribal drumbeats, repetitive gloomy melodies buried beneath noise and distortion-drenched vocals, they produce an assured, exciting piece of art that works as the ideal soundtrack for a nightmarish post-urban landscape. Listen to the striking Once Again and check out the video for Enough Said.

INDONESIA: Deathrockstar
Careless 061Teen Anger
Careless 061 is a band from Medan, North Sumatra, whose songs sound as if Davey Havok created the music, some angry teenager wrote the lyrics and a bunch of Green Day fans performed it.

IRELAND: Hendicott Writing
We Cut CornersBlue
Dublin duo We Cut Corners have contrasting loud and quiet streaks. Set up like The White Stripes, only with the singer on drums, the pair’s garage rock with quirky pop melodies have won them a nomination for the Choice Music Prize (“Ireland’s Grammys”) and near universal admiration in a crowded scene. Blue is the fourth single from just-released gorgeous second album Think Nothing, crammed full of their usual brand of sharp lyrics and heart-on-sleeve brashness. A real hidden gem.

ITALY: Polaroid
Vaghe StelleDuemila Kilometri
Vaghe Stelle is a producer based in Turin (real name Daniele Mana) who released his new album Sweet Sixteen on the UK label Astro:Dynamics. The press release explains that the theme of the album is “an attempt to have a conversation with the listener on the subjects of love and despair”. Among all those fractured rhythms and deep cosmic sounds resonates a melancholic vibe, something passionate, and this is what I really love about Vaghe Stelle’s ever-fascinating music.

MALTA: Stagedive Malta
StalkoTwo
Stalko are a somewhat restless indie-folk trio who are equally comfortable playing small, intimate acoustic gigs or bigger shows accompanied by various other musicians and instruments. They’ve supported a number of renowned artists such as Adem, Owen Pallett, The Moulettes and Stanley Brinks (Andre Herman Dune). Their debut album Grandiloquence was released to critical acclaim in 2012 and earned them a Best Newcomer win as well as a Best Album nomination at the Malta Music Awards.

MEXICO: Red Bull Panamérika
Los BandieraCielo Azul
Rolling in the grass, wearing paisley shirts and growing an afro (crowded with lice) is not exclusive for those who lived in the 60s. Coming from the perennial springtime city of Cuernavaca, Los Bandiera are a retro outfit that takes inspiration from both The Byrds and the Mexican psychedelia of Los Dug Dug’s. Cielo Azul is a bittersweet love declaration to lay with your beloved one, staring up at the sun-hazed diamond skies.

PERU: SoTB
Wolves As FriendsSmall Goodbyes
Inspired by the need to express himself as a singular voice comes Wolves As Friends, the personal project of Lima singer-songwriter Rodolfo Caceres. Honest and simple, he conveys heartfelt, meaningful thoughts about what it is to feel left out and lost in the world. Wolves As Friends released debut record Small Goodbyes in 2013.

PORTUGAL: Posso Ouvir Um Disco?
Throes + The ShineDombolo
Following the worldwide success of Buraka Som Sistema comes another kuduro project made up of Portuguese trio Throes (Marco, Igor and João) and Angolan duo The Shine (Diron and André do Poster). Their work together has already been defined as rockuduro (rock and kuduro). Their sound is wild and energetic and word has spread through their performances at various festivals including Roskilde. Dombolo is taken from just-released new album Mambos De Outros Tipos and has this video.

PUERTO RICO: Puerto Rico Indie
Sr. LangostaDoido
Puerto Rico’s indie scene skews heavily towards rock-oriented sub-genres – punk, metal, garage, pop or experimental – so it is certainly worth noting when a band like Sr. Langosta comes along to test our musical boundaries and take audiences in new directions. Led by guitarist Jorge Andrés Ferreras, the acid jazz and funk trio’s debut album reveals great musicianship and a playful streak, with an extended band willing to fuse Caribbean and Latin rhythms with the classic rock influence of guitar heroes like Jimi Hendrix. Doido is but a taste of the record’s refreshing sounds.

ROMANIA: Babylon Noise
FaunletBird Bones
Dark and perverse, Faunlet’s music combines elements of post-punk, shoegaze, gothic noise, post-rock and doom-pop in a style they call dark gaze. The Bucharest group released debut album Fauna Of The Heart Flora From Beyond in January.

SCOTLAND: The Pop Cop
Model AeroplanesCrazy
Idols-in-waiting Model Aeroplanes recorded their rollicking debut single Crazy while they were finishing their high school exams, but a career as musicians certainly doesn’t look beyond the teenagers, whose enthusiastic post-punk sound might remind you of Two Door Cinema Club or the first Arctic Monkeys album. Their new single Electricity is released on May 24.

SOUTH KOREA: Indieful ROK
MonobanDandelion
Indie-folk trio Monoban has members playing acoustic guitar, cello and cajón, a Peruvian percussion instrument. Dandelion is the lead track off debut EP Ghostship, released in April. With its charming and light-hearted melody it’s an extremely addictive track well suited for repeated play.

SPAIN: Musikorner
Fernando LagrecaSilly Girl Meets Silly Boy (Tsowc Remix)
Fernando Lagreca was born in Uruguay, but his heart has been a part of Barcelona since 2002. Electronic music is his passion and he explores it in an organic way, discovering warm melodies and bright landscapes of sound. IDM is what he delivers so it’s no wonder he has signed to Barcelona-based label Irregular, home of The Suicide Of Western Culture and Lasers.

UNITED STATES: We Listen For You
YVETTEPure Pleasure
The drums and guitars of Brooklyn’s YVETTE thrash heavily like lightning striking steel. What makes this band special is the thoughtful order to the chaos. It’s angry, evil and loud, but the precision ultimately makes YVETTE an unforgettable and important band.

Music Alliance Pact For April 2014

This month’s Music Alliance Pact installment is here, and we are highlighting the latest from Tokyo’s Earthquake Island. Listen to it…and many more…below!

Click the play button icon to listen to individual songs, right-click on the song title to download an mp3, or grab a zip file of the full 27-track compilation through Ge.tt here.

JAPAN: Make Believe Melodies
Earthquake IslandNaked Water
Earthquake Island is usually a solo project based in Tokyo, but for Naked Water the producer behind the music recruited singer Mocca to perform over a lovely, glowing soundtrack that would sound right at home in a church. Her contributions, though, add even more beauty as her vocals overlap one another and give the entire number a Björk-ish edge.

ARGENTINA: Zonaindie
The PlasticosMarfil
This band from La Plata usually cites British rock acts such as The Kinks, Blur and The Stone Roses as their main influences. However, this track from The Plasticos’ new album, Kilómetros, is one of our favorites because of its grungy sound that reminds us of the new Argentine rock movement from the late 90s. You can listen to the album on Bandcamp.

AUSTRALIA: Who The Bloody Hell Are They?
DianasDix
There are moments when all you want to do is kiss the guy who invented the internet. Such is the case when one Bandcamp tag after the other, we stumbled upon Dianas, a trio from the distant city of Perth. Dix is a dreamy drone-pop tune with all those floral notes typical of Scottish indie; kind of like what Camera Obscura might have sounded like on a hot summer’s night in Western Australia.

BRAZIL: Meio Desligado
IsaarTudo Em Volta De Mim Vira Um Vão
Sort of a sad waltz, Tudo Em Volta De Mim Vira Um Vão is taken from Isaar’s new album, Todo Calor (roughly translated as “All The Heat”). Originally from Recife, one of Brazil’s most prolific cities, Isaar shows her strong influences of local culture such as frevo, maracatu and manguebeat, but also flirts with pop music and other contemporary artists like Siba and Orquestra Contemporânea De Olinda.

CANADA: Quick Before It Melts
Zoo LegacyCRWD
Hybrid hip-hop rockers Zoo Legacy are from Ottawa but have a world-conquering sound. Blending indie-rock, R&B, hip-hop and pop, it’s impossible to pinpoint which element is the band’s focus, and that’s exactly what they’ve intended. Lines blur and genres blend, but Zoo Legacy’s gift will always be musical alchemy.

CHILE: Super 45
Niño CoheteEl Bosque
Niño Cohete, a band from Concepción, packed Teatro La Cupula at Lollapalooza Chile in March. With an EP and a recently released debut album, Aves De Chile, they’re conquering the country with their music. They define their style as “sylvan pop” and new single El Bosque has nice guitar arrangements and a very upbeat melody.

COLOMBIA: El Parlante Amarillo
Flaco Flow & MelaninaEl Desorden
From the Colombian Pacific coast comes hip hop duo Flaco Flow & Melanina who, after 12 years, four albums and tours around the world, are still armed with good rhythm and real, powerful lyrics. They never deny their Latin flavor as you can hear in their salsa song El Desorden.

DENMARK: All Scandinavian
Kristian HartingKamikaze
Having paid his dues in a bunch of more or less under the radar thrash metal and noise-rock bands for the past 15 years, Kristian Harting has finally released a debut solo album. Float is a personal account of emotional and financial turmoil set to bleak and haunting alt-folk that will get you one way or the other. At least if you have a penchant for this type of music. And a soul. Kamikaze is a MAP exclusive download.

DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: La Casetera
R.E.A.L.I.D.A.D.Cogiendo Fuego feat. Carolina Camacho
We usually don’t repeat artists on our MAP submissions, but with this one the team decided to make an exception. Both R.E.A.L.I.D.A.D. and Carolina Camacho have been featured before because they make unique music in their genres. For this track, the fury that fuels rock music and the fierce attitude of rap mix together to defend our people from corruption, softened by Carolina’s voice over the chorus. Head to the Bandcamp link above to download Resurgir/Combates Necesarios, the latest EP from R.E.A.L.I.D.A.D.

ECUADOR: Plan Arteria
Fernanda KarolysVago Desiertos
María Fernanda Karolys is one of the most powerful and iconic Ecuadorian female voices. After a strong career that has seen her play with bands such as Pulpo 3, Nortec Collective Presents: Clorofila and Helios Jive, she is ready to present her first solo album and Vago Desiertos is the first single.

ENGLAND: Drowned In Sound
Douglas DareSwim
Radiohead’s influence on modern music is enormous, but it’s strange how little credit is given to Thom’s solo work. The Eraser captivated the imagination of a generation of smart younglings in their bedrooms. Much like London’s James Blake, Dorset’s Douglas Dare climbed Harrowdown Hill and had the epiphany to use hints of light for shadow-play. It’s little wonder this bloop-loving pianist has ended up on Erased Tapes, home to the likes of Nils Frahm and Ólafur Arnalds, who are set to release his debut album Whelm in May.

ESTONIA: Rada7.ee
d8pGather
d8p don’t try to identify themselves by a niche or genre, but rather focus on creating a certain universal feeling, an atmosphere. Melancholic, longing, melodramatic, yet uplifting and danceable, d8p plays with the fine line between euphoria and sadness while also leaving room for surprises. Utilizing complex percussion, simple melodies and unconventional musical structures, d8p aims to take the listener to a place they find familiar yet full of new possibilities.

FINLAND: Glue
Captain CougarRise
On their first two albums, five-piece Captain Cougar perfected rootsy Americana-influenced songs, but with their recently released third album, Åkerblomrörelsen, the band has created bold soundscapes embracing post-rock. Lyrically, it is also very ambitious as it is a history-related concept record that tells the story of Finnish evangelical cult leader and sleep-preacher Maria Åkerblom. Rise is a very good example of this bigger sound.

GREECE: Mouxlaloulouda
The Man From ManagraPraise The Lord
Aiming to explore the function of songs as a fundamental necessity of musical expression, The Man From Managra – the new project of Coti K. – conjures up music with a thoroughly minimal feel and austere arrangements, using a modified bass and his voice both deftly and as core elements. Check out Praise The Lord, a gripping and subtly beautiful song, based on a motorik rhythm, repeated simple phrases and Σtella’s unique contribution.

INDONESIA: Deathrockstar
Cabrini Asteriska & Puti ChitaraLokah Samastah Sukhino Bhavantu
Cabrini Asteriska and Puti Chitara are singer-songwriters who have played together since their childhood. After some shared travels they decided to form a musical project to express their life experiences. This song is a Hindu mantra in Sanskrit, may it bring more peace with you.

IRELAND: Hendicott Writing
Extra FoxCome Together
Neil Adams’ Extra Fox is one of several current side-projects from Dublin scene heroes The Cast Of Cheers, a smartly bristling bedroom electronica aside. Taking elements of his math-rock mainstay’s choppy style, Adams’ charmingly skittish beats and soulful melodies nod towards the neon lights of urban Japan. The man himself credits Com Truise and “that feeling like you’re inside an 80s video game” with inspiring a new thought process. The album is available on a pay-what-you-want basis on Bandcamp.

ITALY: Polaroid
Flying VaginasHappiness And Flour
You could say that Happiness And Flour by the trio Flying Vaginas sounds nothing new, simply classic indie-rock with a long tradition: The Jesus And Mary Chain, Sonic Youth, Clean, Black Tambourine, you name it. Or, to quote some bands from the present: The Pains Of Being Pure At Heart, Crystal Stilts, Girls Names. What makes me particularly happy about this wonderful song is that Flying Vaginas know how to speak the international language really well, and it doesn’t happen very often around here. Their great debut EP is also free to download via Bandcamp.

MALTA: Stagedive Malta
Blue StarShake It Baby
One of the many projects involving Andre Camilleri, the only record ever made by Blue Star is a five-track EP recorded in 1998. Camilleri spent many years busking on the streets of Berlin and Valletta. While in Malta, Andre put together a five-piece band which included Ian Schranz and Mark Sansone from Beangrowers, resulting in a number of well-received gigs and a self-titled EP. Andre is now based in Australia, his output remains prolific and we’ve lost count of his numerous recordings.

MEXICO: Red Bull Panamérika
PonceEl Muerto
Leonardo Kin Ponce’s interest in the paranormal was expressed in his music while in his previous bands Timmy & The Monsters and Ghostcatcher. Now he has been working on Ponce, a solo project based on pure Spanish vocals and some IDM elements. His first single El Muerto follows that line and it has been released with some remixes that emphasize the dark, daily aspects of one of the most fearful ideas of existence: death.

PERU: SoTB
BondageUn Video De Los Dos
From Trujillo, a beautiful city in northern Peru, comes one of the most interesting and provocative rock bands in the country. Bondage was formed by Juan Carlos Paredes, who created his style from punk and garage-rock. Un Video De Los Dos is taken from his first album released last year, which has a lot of sensuality and distorted guitars.

PORTUGAL: Posso Ouvir Um Disco?
SequinNaive
Sequin is the solo project of Ana Miró, an extremely talented vocalist who gives new meaning to the blips and bleeps of early 80s electronic music and has a sound reminiscent of the debut albums by Soft Cell and Depeche Mode. However, Sequin, who recently opened for Warpaint in Lisbon, will also be loved by those who are into more recent bands such as Ladytron. Naive is taken from her album Penelope, out on April 21.

PUERTO RICO: Puerto Rico Indie
NecronazisPeligro De Muerte
Necronazis are a fixture in Puerto Rico’s punk scene and although not as active in recent times, the band makes sure they play a few shows every year for their faithful fans. The group’s different line-ups read as a genealogical tree of the local scene, including long-standing members Giancarlo Cervoni and Sergio Narváez, both former members of Dávila 666. To honor this seminal band, new independent label Discos Diaspora launch Antología on April 19, a limited edition tape compiling Necronazis’ recorded output in its entirety.

ROMANIA: Babylon Noise
Theory Of MindI Felt The Sun
Cluj-based band Theory Of Mind has built up a large fanbase in just a few months. A dream-pop group with psychedelic and experimental influences, they have shaken the foundations of Romanian music – for good.

SCOTLAND: The Pop Cop
FathersonJames
Fatherson are idols to many in Scotland and, having just released their debut album I Am An Island, now is the perfect time for the rest of world to catch on. Their music is more accomplished and rewarding than you might expect from a rock band in their early 20s. There are no unfocused thrashy rackets here, just considered creativity and a very intelligent approach to dynamics and song structure. MAP exclusive download James has all the crescendos, singalong verses and punch-the-air choruses you could ever wish for.

SOUTH KOREA: Indieful ROK
Saram12saramRaindrop, Cloud, Typhoon And The Sun
Saram12saram had been teasing with alluring electronic tunes on SoundCloud a year before the release of the duo’s debut EP. Raindrop, Cloud, Typhoon And The Sun finally came out at the end of 2013 and a few weeks ago it became available on vinyl. The title track puts the esoteric female vocals first, while the music produces an ambient dreamscape that leaves you wanting more.

SPAIN: Musikorner
HUIASDealer
HUIAS is a duet from northern Spain formed by María Lastra and Alejandro Santana. In 2012 they released their first EP in which they mixed guitar arpeggios with electronic arrangements, keeping folk tradition in mind, but now they are comfortable in the dark side. Their music is mysterious, dreamy but dark. Dealer is the first single from their forthcoming debut album.

UNITED STATES: We Listen For You
The DeloreansAs Long As It’s You
On their fantastic new single, As Long As It’s You, The Deloreans find themselves crafting a slow driving tune with multiple small flourishes coloring the entire sound-space. The vocals are confident and overflowing with emotion as drum kicks and a grandiose chorus keep elevating the constantly evolving song.