Red Sleeping Beauty – Solid Gold (featuring Amelia Fletcher)

Smash hit alert!  Swedish legends Red Sleeping Beauty collaborate with fellow legend Amelia Fletcher (The Catenary Wires, Heavenly, Marine Research, Talulah Gosh, Tender Trap) on the aptly titled new ‘Solid Gold’ single (matda026).

WIth this collaboration, Red Sleeping Beauty have come full circle. Starting out as a jangly guitar pop band in the 1990s and coming back after a 20-year hiatus in 2016 as an electronic synth pop trio, Red Sleeping Beauty return to their roots with Solid Gold—a bouncy, jangly, singalong guitar pop smash.

Underneath the jaunty surface, however, lurks dark Swedish melancholia: “I never thought you’d leave / I never thought we’d end up worlds apart / I always thought of us as solid gold / Shining and there forever.”

“Amelia is a teenage hero of ours and the indie goddess”, says Niklas Angergård. “After having written Solid Gold I could only hear her voice singing it, so I gathered courage and asked. And here we are! Her vocals are, as always, solid gold.”

‘Solid Gold’ will feature on a forthcoming four track vinyl EP also including the recent collaboration ‘Second Time’ featuring fellow Sarah Records alum Mary Wyer of Even as We Speak. 

‘Solid Gold’ is available now in the Matinée shop and other digital retailers.  You can also stream it on the handy player below:

 


Introducing The Saint Larsen

Fans of Danish band Northern Portrait will undoubtedly be excited to hear that we received a test pressing for the band’s forthcoming album ‘The Swiss Army’ this week and the release is now in a very long queue at the pressing plant. Once we have a better idea of the release date we will post complete album details here.

To reward your patience, we have some absolutely astonishing news to share in the form of a brand new Matinée artist that you are certain to love. Introducing The Saint Larsenthe new musical endeavor of Northern Portrait baritone and rhythm guitarist Stefan Larsen!

With a stage name inspired by his written signature, The Saint Larsen clearly bears the songwriting and musical signature of Mr. Larsen—not unlike Northern Portrait but still nothing like it. This is heritage pop music with a modern twist.

To celebrate this brilliant news, we have prepared a digital single of a track called ‘Middleman’ (matda025) and the single is available today in the Matinée shop and from digital retailers worldwide! 

It is one of several fantastic songs recorded so far and the debut album from The Saint Larsen will be released later in the year. We are told that the album might be called ‘Show Geezer’ but in any event stay tuned for more news about this very exciting new artist. 

In the meantime, you can have a listen to the ace debut single ‘Middleman’ right now!

 

 


The Royal Landscaping Society – Means of Production

Happy New Year!  Matinée has been relatively quiet since the start of the pandemic, but we are gearing up for 2022 in anticipation of our 25th anniversary!  To kick things off, there are three new releases scheduled for January and the first is the highly anticipated ‘Means of Production’ album (matcd088) from Spanish favorites The Royal Landscaping Society!  The album is officially released January 7, but you can order a copy RIGHT NOW exclusively from the Matinée shop.

The Royal Landscaping Society formed in Seville in 2012 as a solo project, then expanded into a band, and eventually shrunk to a duo with Cris Romero on vocals, guitar, synths, and machines and David Vidal on bass. With an obvious love for the breezier side of indiepop, the band mixes crystalline guitars and electronics to create shimmery romantic pop that has earned comparison to Sarah Records legends Brighter and The Field Mice, among others.

In addition to live appearances at the Indietracks Festival and the Birmingham Popfest, the band has released a clutch of celebrated songs on various international labels over the years. The brilliant ‘Means of Production’ collects these various songs into an incredibly cohesive album that will hopefully reach the bigger audience the band rightly deserves.

The album features six tracks from the band’s 2014 eponymous mini-album on French label Beko Disques, a song from a special Beko Olympics compilation, the auspicious Matinée debut from the ‘Matinée Idols’ compilation (matcd075) in 2017, and their incredible contribution to Matinée’s World Cup EP (matinée 098) in 2018. It also includes eight tremendous cover versions of indie classics including songs originally performed by Adorable, The Cure, Etienne Daho, Harper Lee, McCarthy, Slowdive, The Softies, and They Go Boom! All tracks have been meticulously remastered by the band exclusively for this definitive collection.

The band is working on three simply stunning new recordings that will be released on a 7″ single for Matinée next. In the meantime, catch up with their impressive backstory perfectly curated on the ‘Means of Production’ album.

See the handy Soundcloud playlist below to sample some of this goodness!

 


The Lucksmiths – Why That Doesn’t Surprise Me 20th anniversary edition

As 2021 stumbles sheepishly to the finish line, we are thrilled to announce the release of a special 20th anniversary vinyl edition of the watershed 2001 album ‘Why That Doesn’t Surprise Me’ (matcd091) from Australian legends The Lucksmiths! The album is officially released January 18 but you can preorder it right now on classic black or limited edition turquoise vinyl, with copies shipping in early January. We also have restocked the album on CD for anyone who missed it the first time around.

Hear all the classics you know and love, artisanally crafted for you way back when by messrs Donald, White and Monnone (that’s Marty, Tali and Mark to you, friend), spinning gloriously from your record player!

‘Synchronised Sinking’—check; ‘Broken Bones’—check; ‘The Year of Driving Languorously’—check. Yep, this is a good one. You’ve got ‘Music to Hold Hands To’ and ‘Self Preservation’ and ‘The Great Dividing Range’ too. It’s all here on one gorgeous record, handsomely adorned in Alex Jack’s cheeky ‘dragon bum warmer’ cover art.

Why That Doesn’t Surprise Me (their fifth ‘studio’ album) represented a turning point for The Lucksmiths, as the Melbourne band took their humble three-piece set-up into a legit recording studio for the first time and set to work with producer Craig Pilkington on exploring uncharted dynamic and tonal possibilities through the use of extra instrumentation and lush orchestral augmentation.

Indeed, this was to be the first of three albums The Lucksmiths recorded at Pilkington’s Audrey Studios; 2003’s Naturaliste and 2005’s Warmer Corners round out the trifecta which is often regarded as a golden period in Lucksmiths lore.

Amongst the extra instrumentation we can hear Darren Hanlon deftly jangling some joyous lead guitar. A longtime touring companion of The Lucksmiths with his band The Simpletons, Hanlon had just released his first solo EP Early Days when he was invited to lend a hand and effectively became “the fourth Lucksmith”—a role he eventually relinquished to focus purely on his own songwriting, with top-notch results. Also in there, we can hear the sweet vocals of a young pre-Architecture in Helsinki Kellie Sutherland who, as well as lending backing vocals to several songs, sings a show-stopping duet with Tali on the captivating ‘How to Tie a Tie’.

Originally released by iconic indie labels of the day—Candle Records (Australia), Drive-In Records (US), Fortuna Pop! (UK), and Clover Records (Japan), the album has been out of print on vinyl for decades.  Drop the needle on this charmer—it’s time to fall in love all over again!

Australian customers please note: this is a co-release with the magnificent Lost and Lonesome Recording Company, so please support your local label! While you wait for your trusty postman to deliver this gem, you can listen to a few of the aforementioned songs on our Soundcloud:

 


Red Sleeping Beauty – Second Time (featuring Mary Wyer of Even As We Speak)

New release alert!  Swedish favorites Red Sleeping Beauty collaborate with Mary Wyer from Sarah Records legends Even as We Speak on the absolutely brilliant new “Second Time” single (matda024). 

Red Sleeping Beauty were scheduled to play the Cologne Popfest in March 2020, and planned to have Mary join them on stage for three songs. Damn you, pandemic! Instead, she now joins the Stockholm synth pop trio on the first single from their upcoming fifth album. Thank you, pandemic!

The lush vocals from Mary make “Second Time” sound like the kind of pop smash Saint Etienne released at their peak. Hi-energy, yet sophisticatedly laid back, the track is a dance floor filler for a time of empty dance floors.

The single is available in the Matinée shop and other digital retailers now!  You can also stream it on the handy player below:

 


March Madness!

The Matinée spring collection is coming soon, with new releases on 7″, LP, CD, and digital formats.  Watch this space for details!

In the meantime, we need to clear space in the Matinée office so we’re having a March Madness clearance sale with a handsome 40% off orders $50 and up through the end of the month.  The discount is automatic and applies to everything in the shop—vinyl, cd and digital releases—so stock up now so we have room for the new gems!  ** Lucky you…the sale is now extended to the end of the day April 4 so you have a few more days to shop. **

 


My Darling YOU! – A Dream Come True

New release alert!  Swedish duo My Darling YOU! are masters of short, shouty, energetic pop songs combining guitars, keyboards, and percussion with handsome melodies and ace vocals. The band—comprised of Klas Hermansson and Christoffer Johansson—formed in 2004 and released ten singles over an eight-year period, beginning with a series of self-released gems and building to a stunning run of releases on the hip Luxury Records label.

‘A Dream Come True’ (matcd087) collects 20 highlights from these long sold-out singles into a cohesive and impressive album that hopefully provides the band with a larger audience than the original Swedish-only releases allowed.

The songs on the album revolve around typical twenty-something transgressions including drinking, smoking, and relationship mishaps, but tales of noisy neighbors, late night dancing, rainy nights, bar fights, disco lights, taxi kisses, drunk dialing, heartbreak, antidepressants, popstars, and marriage proposals are also fair game.

The album perfectly captures the band’s shambolic energy and punk rock attitude in 38 minutes that will have you reaching for the repeat button straightaway. We’ve heard rumors there may be new My Darling YOU! recordings on the horizon, so catch up on their back story now so you are prepared for the next chapter.

Pro tip: we released ‘We Break Up On Friday’ (matda021) and ‘Thanks For Letting Me Stay’ (matda016) as digital singles and each has a non-album b-side so make sure you check out those two extra tracks as well!

‘A Dream Come True’ and the two singles are available now from the Matinée shop and other reputable retailers, as well as the usual digital platforms.  Have a listen to a few choice cuts on our Soundcloud and you’ll surely be hooked!

 

 


The Lucksmiths – A Good Kind of Nervous

A special vinyl edition of the classic 1997 album ‘A Good Kind of Nervous’ (matcd089) from Australian hitmakers The Lucksmiths is out now!

Known for their short and bittersweet indiepop songs, economical set-up and charismatic live shows, The Lucksmiths formed in 1993 and initially consisted of singer/snare-drummer Tali White, guitarist Marty Donald, and bassist Mark Monnone.

The band’s fourth album ‘A Good Kind of Nervous’ introduced them to new audiences at home and abroad (including an invitation to open for Belle & Sebastian on the Scottish band’s first ever European tour) and is considered a high water mark for the early-Lucksmiths sound; ‘Under the Rotunda’, ‘Guess How Much I Love You’, ‘Caravanna’ and ‘Punchlines’ all went on to become perennial live favourites.

Steeped in the Melbourne milieu that The Lucksmiths often referenced in song, the album was recorded in a poorly-heated Victorian terrace in Carlton (which was soon to become a hair salon) and mixed in Mark Monnone’s Fitzroy North house, across the road from the Edinburgh Gardens – the same neighbourhood that inspired the bassist’s skyline silhouette print which adorns the album’s cover.

Originally released on CD by two iconic indie labels of the day – Candle Records (Australia) and Drive-In Records (US) – the album served to launch the band from their Melbourne cradle into the waiting world and what was to become a long procession of international releases and touring until the band’s split in 2009.

The 2020 release, available on classic black and limited edition orange wax, marks the first time the album is available on vinyl.  All preorders have now shipped, and we are down to the final 50 copies so grab one now from the Matinée shop before they sell out.  We also have restocked the album on CD for anyone who missed it the first time around. Note: this is a co-release with the magnificent Lost and Lonesome Recording Company in Australia, so please support your local label.

You can also listen to a few album tracks on our Soundcloud:

 


Azure Blue – All I Want For Christmas

Swedish act Azure Blue—the romantic pop escapism of Tobias Isaksson—will celebrate ten years as a solo artist in 2021. Following celebrated albums and singles of mainly synth based, dreamy, romantic pop, he releases his most organic track to date.

‘All I Want For Christmas Is My Baby’ is an ode to two late idols: Ennio Morricone and all time favourite Scott Walker whose orchestral chamber pop has been a living and breathing part of Tobias since his late teenage years.

All the drums, bass, piano, organ, acoustic and electric guitars, vocals and a full symphony orchestra has been carefully written, arranged, programmed, played and sung by Azure Blue himself. Enjoy the strings, horns and woodwinds along with the most tasteful chamber pop production we’ve heard in a long time. The timeless melody is an instant classic. 

The digital single (matda023) is available now via the usual suspects or directly from the Matinée shop. The track is also now featured on our Soundcloud.

 


The Royal Landscaping Society – Frost

Following the popular singles ‘Goodbye’ and ‘Clean’ last year, Spanish duo The Royal Landscaping Society have one final single to share in advance of the 17-track ‘Means of Production’ album. 

 

The absolutely superb song ‘Frost’ is a shimmering indiepop gem with sweeping keyboards and expert electronica reminiscent of early Matinée favorites Harper Lee. Yes, it’s that good! The single also features an excellent cover version of ‘This Gift’ by Sunday Records band They Go Boom!

 

The digital single (matda022) is available November 24 via the usual suspects including Spotify, Apple Music, and Amazon, but because we love you, you can get it right now exclusively in the Matinée shop‘Frost’ is also now featured on our Soundcloud!