Soundcheck Charlie is back!
Vacation was well and good, but now I’m ready to rock n’ roll. Which brings me to…
When | Tuesday, August 23
Where | SO36, Berlin
For fans of: Psychic Ills, The Unicorns, Ty Segall
There must be something in the Australian water (see: LSD), because it seems that the amount of great psychedelic music coming out of that country is limitless. It’s no small compliment then to call King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard some of the best of their ilk. The Melbourne-based septet are masters at seamlessly blending infectious pop hooks into their trippy soundscapes. They’re also an incredibly prolific band, having consistently put out two records per year since 2013 (surprisingly, none of which are duds). Released in April, their eighth studio album, Nonagon Infinity, finds them pushing their already stretched creative boundaries. While the underlying thematic premise of its predecessor, Paper Mâché Dream Balloon, was to use exclusively acoustic instruments to create a 60s-inspired folk-pop romp, Nonagon‘s peculiarity is the fact that the entire album is an infinite loop: each of the nine songs flows effortlessly into the next, ending with a closing cut that continues straight back into the opening track. This latest LP is a huge sonic departure from King Gizzard‘s previous release, as they leave behind the twee melodies and pastoral chamber-psych for a rowdy and relentlessly fast-paced garage rock explosion. In all honesty, though, it seems that no matter what direction they go in, history has proven that they’ll brilliantly nail it with a carefree ease.
Who | Sunflower Bean
When | Friday, August 26
Where | Lido, Berlin
For fans of: Wolf Alice, POND
I’ve already gushed quite a bit about these Brooklynites in my Top 10 Discoveries of 2015, but it certainly doesn’t hurt to reaffirm their awesomeness. Despite the fact that Sunflower Bean only just released their debut album a few months ago, the trio have already made a powerful impression, serving as the support for big name bands like The Vaccines and landing themselves on myriad “best of” and “ones to watch” lists. If their 2015 EP, Show Me Your Seven Secrets, showcased the band’s rougher, punky side, their debut release, Human Ceremony, saw them softening their approach and incorporating a dreamier aesthetic into their sound. It’s this wide range that makes them so captivating, as they careen from the high-energy, hard guitar riffs of tracks like ‘Wall Watcher’ to the tender, dream-pop of ‘I Want You to Give Me Enough Time.’ One thing you can be sure of: Sunflower Bean will always make sure to keep you on your toes.