Elizabeth and the Catapult "You and Me" http://www.myspace.com/elizabethandthecatapult
This Brooklyn pop-rock band's last album, Taller Children, was one of my favorites of 2009--one of those records that worms its way into your head without you even noticing until suddenly you realize you can hum every single song. Next week they return with The Other Side of Zero and this single is just as wormy. That's a good thing.
For this track from their upcoming EP, Accidents and Artifice, this London folk band started out with a little parsley, sage, rosemary, and thyme from the Simon & Garfunkel songbook...but then they threw in a rocking bass line and a moody cello and turned the whole recipe upside down.
If Fleet Foxes and Vampire Weekend went to Barbados, drank too many piña coladas, and ended up having a beach bonfire jam session, the music might sound a little something like this. The LA. band—led by Benji Schneider—came together on a whim at a friend's wedding on Lake Huron and now they're set to release their second EP, Mighty, this fall. EC
Darkly brilliant and beautiful in a gothy, Kate Bush kind of way, Clare Maguire is a British artist who has been steadily touring (with Plan B) and garnering radio love on the other side of the Atlantic all year. Her Ain't Nobody EP was finally released in the U.K. this week, and confirmed what we've suspected since we first heard the title track a few months ago: 2011 will be her year. Breakage's astonishing remix adds delicate piano notes and an impossibly heavy rolling bassline—his signature—which perfectly complement Maguire's vocals, which are even more haunting here than on the original.
This quintet from Newcastle, England, is fronted by singer Sarah Hall, who also directs the band's videos and designs their artwork. Her voice is as pretty and ethereal as her aesthetic, sounding almost Scandinavian at times—and there's something Cocteau Twins-esque about it, too. This is a sparkling song, full of optimism and warm guitars, perfect for a crisp, fall day.