WFMU’s Number 25 entry on their Top Thirty this week is Them Bones, the first full length from British anti-folk group The Sound of Antler. Their DIY sound relies heavily on the accordion but also features flugelhorn and, of course, some percussion and electric instrumentation. The album is simple, sweet, and quiet with lyrics highlighting historic and traditional British images.
The Breaks on CKDU
Halifax’s CKDU showed Toronto’s The Breaks some love, charting their sophomore album Honeybees at Number 4 on this week’s Top Thirty playlist. Warm and gritty, the Canadian rock and roll band pulls together piano, electric guitar, banjo, and harmonica to create a sweaty mix of blues, rock, R&B, and folk that would sound at home way down south where Spanish moss hangs from tall oak trees in the humid summer air.
The Red Hot Chilli Pipers. Yeah, I thought it was a typo too, but no, this is a Scottish band playing what they call “bag rock.” I initially thought this was purely a hilarious discovery, but then I dug a little deeper. High energy performances and serious musicianship save them from death knell that is pure kitsch. The band is made up of some hardworking, genuinely talented musicians like Robert Mathieson, the five-time World Champion Pipe Major of the Shotts and Dykehead Pipe Band, and Steven Graham, a two-time snare drum World Champion. Technically, they already have some notoriety in the U.K., having won the top prize on the TV talent show “When Will I Be Famous,” but they are new to a lot of folks on this side of the pond (unless you frequent Scottish festivals). Their new record, Breathe, is out July 30 and features covers of popular songs including Journey’s “Don’t Stop Believing” and Michael Jackson’s “Smooth Criminal.”