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Well done to all who spotted it, which would be no-one so far, but Day One was actually TUESDAY. I have amended the previous playlist title to say TUESDAY. These things happen when you retire and your brain goes into hibernation. It does mean you have an extra day to look forward to. So, Tuesday is done. Next is the real Wednesday, arriving now.


WH Lung

Today would have been quite special. It started and finished with the two of the most played artists on my turntable over the last year or so. Plus it included two of the UK’s biggest indie acts of 2021. So let’s done this. They Say: Our first album is a vivacious concoction of krautrock, synth pop and infectious grooves. Our new second one was a bold electronic leap forward into the dance music we love. A record that is direct, punchy and potent - an ode to the dance floor that we had missed over the last year or so. It is a very rare beast of a record: an album created in solitude that feels bursting with vitality, love, and promise. I Say: Krautrock groove sounds are my favourite and this crowd are on their way to global stardom.

Low Girl

The UK bands just keep coming….They Say: Low Girl is the work of multi-instrumentalist Sarah Cosgrove and her bandmates Toby, Tom and Brad whose lyrics tackle the feelings of loneliness, self-worth, mental health and the constant trials and struggles of finding one’s identity growing up. I Say: They sound much more upbeat than that. Will be good to see what they come up with when they have fully grown up.


And we are back outside the UK for a rare moment. The reason I highlight this is that usually my SXSW involves loads of bands from Canada, Australia, New Zealand, France and the Scandinavian countries and is dominated by American bands. This year I noticed a huge increase firstly in Austin based bands, as I guess they needed to bolster the smaller international numbers because of the pandemic, but invariably they are not to same high standards as the other bands I have found, and secondly of DJ and Hip-hop acts. Nothing wrong with that, just not a genre that I explore much at SXSW. Anyways. They Say: Here is the modern dystopian bliss that is Glove. The stylish and magnetic 4-piece group underscores the best of the 1980’s synthetic new wave sound with a contemporary rock n’ roll edge that is sure to propel the band to the forefront of the alternative rock genre. I Say: They should not have let their label write their cookie cutter bio. The sound is how they describe it but I mean, how dull is that intro.


Now we are on!! To Albany, NYC. They say: Laveda draw a post-apocolyptic landscape through layers of colorful sound and ethereal melodies. The band fuses polished pop song clarity with a 90's guitar driven sound reminiscent of groups like The Sundays or my bloody valentine. Founding members exploring the great yawning unknown. From the freedom and uncertainty that rests at your fingertips or the distant and possibly desolate future, they capture adolescent restlessness with big walls of sound and a dreamy melodious warble. I Say: That is more like it, that is a bio. I especially like the guy’s distorted vocals.


LA Alert. They Say: Polyplastic is an intricate labyrinth, a siren call beckoning you in. Drawing on a diverse palette of new wave sounds, industrial aesthetics and infrastructure, Polyplastic is a band as boundless as its influences. I Say: Like me an industrial aesthetic or two.


Vying for best new band name. They Say(Actually the NME said): It might still be the morning when Canada’s Fanclubwallet takes to the stage at Mohawk but the venue is swarming with people. When Hannah Judge and her band start their set, it’s clear why: the Ontario indie-rocker’s songs are full of fresh takes on the emo indie that’s been having a moment as of late. I Say: The NME (Uk’s iconic music rag, the New Musical Express, now sadly just a web paper) listed the best 22 bands that they saw at SXSW, by the time you have all my notes you will have had 59 bands shared by myself. Only five bands made both lists. This was one of them.


Canada fighting back in style. They Say: Inspired by the pounding rhythmic improvisations found in krautrock, experimental trio Yoo Doo Right (Montréal) wed noisy, melodic guitar parts, effect-heavy synthesizer soundscapes, nonchalant bass grooves and patented percussive furies into a literal wall of sound. Solemn, chin-to-chest vocals dance in and out of the primordial sonic spectrum, creating a warm pillow to rest a weary head upon. I Say: Must be Krautrock day. Lovely wall of sound.


From Ohio. They Say: The increasingly inventive punk rock outfit DANA was formed by singer Madeline Jackson, in an effort she describes as "purely survival driven" in 2016. Described as a "grungy, punky, messy affair, a trashy and tumultuous fight between genres" and as a "noisy, skronking good time”. I Say: SXSW live sets in tiny venues with off the wall acts are one of the highlights and this would have been one.

Population II

SXSW getting into its groove, I feel. They Say: Population II is a four + piece of young musicians from the suburbs of Montreal blending Garage and Psych Rock with free Jazz and linear rhythms to create a rich nuanced universe. Their songs are often a mixture of multiple improvised ideas under the influence of spontaneity. I Say: If a band is called Population II and their album is called À la Ô Terre and their first single is called Introspection then there is a good chance they are throwback prog rockers. I am right. Like the seventies never happened. Love it.


This is the eighth North American band in a row, normal service resumed. They Say: Geese, from Brooklyn, represents five teenagers whose love of music touches every part of their lives: their restless anxiety about their futures, and their pent-up frustration with their present - a perspective all too familiar in today’s uncertain world. Perhaps then it only makes sense that the figure on the album cover was born from a dream: curiously alien, yet strangely familiar. I Say: Potentially a prog rock band from teenagers in 2022 who knew 1977 happened.

India Ramey

Nashville have turned up. They Say: India Ramey kicks off with a shudder of woozy, western guitar, sounding as much like the soundtrack to some long-lost cowboy epic . Progressive, gritty, and darkly cinematic, this is a record inspired by the turbulent present, stockpiled with songs that take aim at the liars, leaders, and hypocrites among us. Ramey calls it her “post-apocalyptic western,” filled with plenty of fury and alt-country firepower to match. I Say: She has the best Political song of SXSW 2022, must be heard.

Black Hippie

And now Memphis. They Say: Blvck Hippie is a Sad Boy Indie Rock Band from Memphis, TN, tryna show Black kids they can be weird too. I Say: To the point. A perfect SXSW band.

Self Esteem

Another of the UK’s leading lights. They Say: As Self Esteem, Rebecca Taylor has shaken off the shackles of her indie band past to become the unapologetic pop star she always wanted to be. Taylor gives voice to the feelings of insecurity and misogyny-induced frustration that many of us face every day, emboldening a whole new audience with powerful, truth-telling lyricism. Her second album was praised for its fearless ability to tackle important issues around female autonomy, comparison culture and self love, its intimate, confessional and witty lyricism and anthemic maximalist pop rhythms. I Say: One of the smash UK hits of last year. This would have been a show to see as Self Esteem would have been another of the huge breakout acts this year. Remember the name.

Wet Leg

This is the other band who were everywhere in 2021. They Say: Wet Leg only released their debut single, Chaise Longue, in June 2021, but its dry wit, Mean Girls nod and thumping indie-disco beat turned it into a runaway hit. They have been on the radio every time you turn it on. Here are the pop stars you've been waiting years to discover.

"It all seems so long ago now," says Rhian, still a little stunned by the rapid pace of it all. It has only been six months. I Say: Everyone should own their single Chaise Longue - wait a minute, are you saying you have not heard it? Jeez.

The Lottery Winners

The UK fighting back three in a row. They Say: In 2021 the band, freed from their cages, released a string of radio singles, and playing sold out shows and main-stages of festivals all over the world, including a sell out O2 Ritz in Manchester. There's so much more to come from this band. I Say: Despite having a tres boring bio and their best known song being such a rip off of so many indie tunes that you will think you have heard it before when you have not, they are saved by having guest vocals by the one and only Frank Turner.

Snapped Ankles

And so to the last band of the day and one of my great favourites. They Say: Snapped Ankles are a London-based post-punk band, incorporating elements of performance art and art rock. The band members' identities are unknown, due to the fact that the group performs in ghillie suits, but they claim to be "forest folk...descended from the trees" The band perform in "shamanistic costumes" and their live performances include elements of performance art and art-rock. Their unique live show is known for "whipping audiences into a manic, frenzied, ecstatic state." The band also cites the diverse influences of Morris dancing, Old Norse texts, Jean-Luc Godard, Lightning Bolt, Fela Kuti and London warehouse parties. I Say: That is the way to do it. Here’s a photo which says more than even those words.

And that was Wednesday. Really this time. 16 bands. Six from the UK, Six from USA and three from Canada. Rest Of The World, where are you this year. Two of my favourite bands, WH Lung and Snapped Ankles. Two of the biggest acts in the UK right now - Wet Leg and Self Esteem. Band of the day? Ooh, it is a tough one. I will go for a new band and say Population II.

Here is the playlist for today: https://open.spotify.com/playlist/2ZocgIV8SbSmYyD1LJWUfA?si=6ea26b8adb65432d