Band On Band
Welcome to our ‘Band on Band’ series, where our own artists and friends of the label talk about their fave BSM releases and why. Read/listen on - we hope you discover something great too – tell us on our socials if you do!
Rolo Tomassi on Meet Me In St Louis
Something we all agree on at BSM is how awesome Rolo Tomassi are, and so we had to ask them about their fave release of ours. This is what they had to say about Meet Me in St Louis - Variations on Swing:
"MMISL were one of the first bands we 'properly' toured with that wasn't just a weekender or a cobbled together group of dates with loads of days off in between. I hadn't really heard them prior to these dates being suggested but I was aware of BSM as a label and probably knew Kev at this point so trusted the judgement of everyone around us that it was a good idea if we played shows together. Obviously I was pretty blown away.
This tour would have been just before Variations came out but they were mainly playing that material. I felt like I practically knew the record inside out by the time it was released but was still in love with the proper, studio versions of the tracks. I revisited it last year ahead of getting to see them play one last time at ArcTanGent (in 2016) and it still feels as vital as it did when I first saw them play. I can't think of many other bands that have and would have that effect on you. Essential listening"
Loz, Cassels on Bear vs Shark
Bear vs Shark hailed from Michigan and lasted a mere four years between 2001 and 2005. With influences including Les Savy Fav, The Clash, comic books and Patrick Swayze, they produced a unique mix of punk, post-hardcore and Midwest indie, that's still missed by many! One of our young guns, Loz, from Cassels, told us how he started listening to this old classic:
"I’m big into the Bear vs Shark release at the moment. For those who don’t know them, they're like a Midwest indie/post-hardcorey amalgamation of greatness.
I literally heard them on an old BSM sampler (God bless Spotify) and they’ve turned out to be a great find. Kylie is my fave track from the album - it starts with quiet pop-like hooks and then out of nowhere goes into this nuts breakdown which unleashes the singer's screams, and he’s got one helluva voice. I hear they played some reunion shows, so if they fancy coming over to the UK to do a couple that’d be swell"
Tall Ships on Hop Along
Ric from (the sadly departing) Tall Ships tells us why 'Get Disowned' by Hop Along is one of his favourite BSM releases:
"My personal fave would have to be 'Get Disowned' by Hop Along. Francis Quinlan's voice, melodies and lyrics are so unique and on point it's hard not to be moved by every single line she sings. That alongside the playful and inventive production means it's an album that (even years on...) reveals more and more with every listen!"
Kevin Devine on mewithoutYou
Kevin Devine tells us why you all should be listening to Ten Stories from mewithoutyou:
"It was a toss-up between that & I Am Gemini by Cursive, actually, and for the same reasons - both are friends & boundary-pushers I admire & respect for continuing to make vibrant, challenging music deep into their careers, and both are bands I toured with on these respective records & got to hear every night, trips I remember fondly & relationships I keep current to this day.
mewithoutYou is very much its own beautiful & strange animal, and I’m partial to this collection of songs, and their execution - a little bit of everything that makes them Them is present & accounted for, dense & vivid & evocative story-telling over dynamic & adventurous structures. "
Billy Hutton, Milk Teeth on Woahnows
Billy Hutton of Milk Teeth tell us why Woahnows are one of his 'go to' Summer records!
"It's extremely difficult to choose just one record that BSM has released as a favourite, but after much thought I'm gonna have to go with "Woahnows - Understanding and Everything Else". From the very start it hits you with a banger. But the album really touched my heart strings with "Puncher". Tim's voice / vocal melody in that song really stands out to me. It's the perfect summer record and but I always seem to listen to it when it's cold to remind myself of the sun. They're also a cracking band live and I'm never bored of watching them".
Ross , Lonely The Brave on Jeniferever
Ross of Lonely The Brave and (for older listeners) once of Secondsmile/The Tupolev Ghost tells us why his favourite BSM release is the Iris EP from Jeniferever.
"I guess it could be loosely put under the post rock tag, but it's way more than that. Real, proper beautiful songs with incredible instrumentation going on throughout, with a lot of soul to it.
It was released the same year as Secondsmile’s debut EP in 2004 and I'd say it influenced us a great deal with the music we then went on to make. Listening to it now, it could have been released last week. Way ahead of the game that band. But saying that, hearing it again does take me right back to that golden time, and makes me happy and sad all at the same time. Wonderful years. This is a Beautifully melancholic record that I can't recommend enough".
Lucinda, Kamikaze Girls on La Dispute
My favourite BSM release was La Dispute ‘Rooms Of The House’ a couple of years back. I love everything about this record. I love how huge it sounds, and how intense it is.
Jordan’s lyrics and approach to writing is incredible and I love how he takes a fictional concept and turns it into something really special.
Jeremy Bolm, Touche Amore on Kevin Devine
Jeremy from Touche Amore , tells us why you all should be listening to Kevin Devine.
'Kevin Devine is one of those special singer / songwriters that don't come around too often. I'd put him in the same line with the likes of Conor Oberst, Ben Gibbard, or Sufjan Stevens, not because they are anything alike but because they each have a hyper specific sound. You could pinpoint his influences from Elliott Smith to Leonard Cohen as they reflect his talent and lyrical abilities. Not only does Kevin continue to write heartfelt, honest, tragic and often humorous songs, he does it while radiating kindness and compassion. I'm not sure it's possible to be a fairweather KD fan, as once you're in, you're in for the long haul.'
Gnarwolves on Grown Ups
Charlie from Gnarwolves tells us why More Songs by Grown Ups is his favourite.
I remember when Gnarwolves first started & I met a bunch of lads who would always play a bunch of records at our house & this one always stood out for me. It was the tech style crossed with the gritty sound & vocals that sold it for me. I love the gruffed out vocals (obviously) haha. But yeah it was one of the first of what I call "twiddly emo" records I heard & it's still one of the best imo.
- Charlie, Gnarwolves