Saturday, 10 November 2012

Otti Albietz: The inside story

 We recently had the oppotunity to interview local acoustic sensation Otti Albietz, its taken long enough but here it is, hope you enjoy it!

First things first how are you?
 I'm well, thank you!

You said you were leaving town for a couple of days, was that band related and if so what can you tell us about that?
It was music related, a gig and some promotion. I went to visit my girlfriend after that too, and that was bloody lovely.

Before we jump into the interview proper, can you tell us a little bit more about yourself? what do you do in your spare time, are you a film fan etc?
Communicating, creating. Sometimes I love films, 'Fargo', 'Pina', Tidelands', 'Liar Liar', 'Brazil', and most things stupid, and funny.  I use my travels to look for tatty antique books on different intriguing subjects. Carve wood, paint, write stories, play with ideas, and indulge in G.L.F.A.!

Unfortunately we have heard of you at a local gig relatively recently, so seeing as we don't actually know, how long has Otti Albietz been a thing?
He's been a thing since I realised he could be a thing. I could say birth, though it wasn't till last year that I actually accepted that I wanted to pursue music in the way I now do. I'd written, and performed in various band set ups till then. So, in my heart 'Otti' has been a thing since music first embraced me in dreams, though actively only the last 2 years. I collaborate with many musicians when recording, and also at certain gigs, so there's not a band as such, more an orbiting collective of individual musicians.

Your clearly a very talented musician, what can you tell us about your musical background? have you been in bands before, what was your first instrument and when did you start playing it?
I do enjoy listening, and learning, discovering through intrigue. I've been in various bands as singer, and guitarist. 'State of Miasma' till '07. We recorded an album that has never been released.
'Dusty Rosko' till earlier this year, who released an album called 'nextwave-heavysoul' last year. First instrument was my voice, as I used to go for long walks, from the age of 5-6, and sing to myself. Always wanted to learn Cello, though got a guitar as a present instead. Played Guitar off and on till 11-12, then gave up. When I was 15, I began writing music more enthusiastically. I used any instrument to accompany, though Guitar being one of the more versatile, and useful to me, I stuck with it more often.

In our review we made a brief comparrison to Jack Johnson, you seemed a bit put out by this, so who would you say your main influences are, and what in paticular inspires your lyrics?
I don't mind hugely, I just never listen to Jack Johnson's music. I'm influenced by anything that gets to me. A melody, feeling, and words that mean something, and communicate something. I like emotional fulfilment, that can hoperfully be shared. Creative influences in short are, Hendrix, Debussy, Nikki De Saint Phalle, J S Bach, Beatles, Department of Eagles, King Crimson, Herman Hesse, George Elliot, P J Harvey, Cohen, Hundertwasser, David Deutsch, Laura Veirs, Zappa, William Godwin, John Coltrane, System of a Down, Thomas Brown, Miles. Could keep going, it all does something.

Following on from the previous question, what sort of music did you grow up around? are there any local bands that you are a big fan of now?
I grew up around King Crimson, Hendrix, Floyd, Leonard Cohen, Small Faces, John Martyn, Caravan, as my dad listened to them. I like a bunch of local bands, though I don't get to see a lot of gigs, so may overlook a few I haven't seen. Zoe Konez, Admiral Sir Cloudsley Shovel, Sand Rabbit, Kid Kapichi, Ceyote, Tim Hoyte, any band George Macdonald is in, and any band Darren Morris is in (maybe they should form a band!).
You recently mentioned to us that you signed a new record deal, how much can you tell us about that? is there perhaps going to be a tour involved?
It's with a label called BBE, a true independent, as in I can meet, and speak to those that turn the cogs. They're based in London, and have a lovely office here in Hastings. The album was produced with master-sound-craftsman Harvey Summers, and is to be released very early next year. There will be a single in the coming weeks/month! There may be a tour, am still in organize mode, so no details, though it will mostly be the south, with a popping into Aberdeen.

A slightly more personal question perhaps as we draw towards the end, which of your own songs is your favourite and why?
Don't have an answer really. Every song ends up finished, recorded, and on an album, because I have had moments of liking it, and that changes with the weather.

Before we go, we asked a couple of friends if there were any questions they were dying to know the answers to, and one seemed to come out on top, so we have to ask can you tell us a little bit more about the dancing man (plays live with you, on the keyboard we think!)
His name is Thad Skews, a great friend, film /performance collaborator, songwriter, and musician. I play drums in the band 'Unicorndad vrs Robodad', in which we interpret his gorgeous songs in the style of AAAAH. We have our first EP out on Vinyl, with Gensing Farm records. He is also an astonishing illustrator, who has already created the cover to my third album. A lovely man, is Thad Skews.

Thank you very much to Otti Albietz for shedding a little light on him as a musician, we wish you the best of success in the future!

Indieed Kids

Thursday, 18 October 2012

The Kid Kapichi: Gin & Chronic album review

If you have followed us here at Indieed Kids at all, you’ll probably have the impression that we’re quite biased towards the local music scene, and you could well be right. The problem is, it’s just too damn good! Which admittedly we hadn’t really realised. Here we are again, reviewing The Kid Kapichi’s debut album Gin & Chronic this time. Still with barely a bad word to say.

The Kid Kapichi are a 4 piece indie rock band in the vein of the Arctic Monkeys and even The Black Keys, comprised of local talent; Jack Wilson, Ben Beetham, George Macdonald and Harrison Caruana. Perhaps the first thing that struck us whilst listening to Gin & Chronic was the sheer professionalism, everything from the stylish and tidy album art work, even the track listing scream polished enthusiasm and that’s before you’ve even taken the disk out. These aren’t just a few kids fucking about on guitars. They take themselves seriously, and so should you!

We’ve already made a comparison to the Arctic Monkeys and we weren’t joking, when we first chucked the album on, a friend walked in convinced we had found a rare Arctic Monkeys b-side. However after a couple of playthroughs we began to notice a hidden depth and influences from bands such as the Smiths (perhaps most evident in the lyrics) and even the odd solo, bringing back fond memories of listening to Hendrix as a kid. I guess while we are making a Hendrix comparison we should probably justify it, and believe us its easy enough - The Kid Kapichi will blow your mind! The riffs are catchy, the bass booms, and Macdonald takes the drums by storm, these guys are no doubt at the top of their game. Their album destroys the local opposition, and we cant believe they’re not signed already. You may be wondering why we have not touched on the vocals yet, but don’t worry we have plenty to say in a second.

About now we should probably start raving on about the lyrics. They’re flat out incredible. Telling tales of messy nights out, sexual exploits and the adventures of being a young adult, they perhaps don’t have the widest topical range but its something we can all relate to, and we’ll be damned if there aren’t some truly poetic moments in there. Maybe our favourite has to be found in the first verse of Inflated Sense Of Self Importance (“I get stressed, I’m an amateur/ my heart beats, iambic pentameter”) but that’s only one gem from within a vast pool to pull from. Of course the lyrics are only one side of the coin, what happens if you look at the flipside of things? The vocal presentation is extraordinary switching between gentle and restrained to rowdy and unrelenting. The singing compliments both the lyrics and the instruments perfectly.

As far as we can tell that just about brings our review of Gin & Chronic to a close. Before we head off though, we have just a few more things to mention. For one a huge round of applause to the guys who recorded, mixed and mastered the album, they’ve done a phenomenal job releasing one of the most professional and authentic sounding albums we’ve heard in a while. Unfortunately we haven’t had a chance to see the Kid Kapichi live yet, but don’t worry when we do we’re sure we will have plenty more to say about it. You can pick up Gin & Chronic just by getting into contact with them on their face book page with a £5 asking price. Its definitely worth it.

As if we haven’t said it enough they really are the “alpha males” of the Hastings music scene.

Thursday, 20 September 2012

Otti Albeitz: Initial Thoughts

There is something quite unique about Otti Albeitz, whilst comparisons to artists such as Jack Johnson and Dallas Green are inevitable, he seems to of taken the acoustic genre ( or as he likes to put it “Folktronica” ) in new and unexpected directions. This is impressive as many would argue that acoustic music has been done to death - until Otti hit the scene. Unfortunately we couldn’t find much background for you, generally all his info is quirky and comical - aptly reflecting his great live performances and musical style.

Perhaps the best way to describe his music is as a stripped back, more beautiful, more menacing Grizzly Bear. This works perfectly. The gentle, melodic vocal presentation doesn’t hint at the surprisingly dark and twisted lyrics occasionally found within, (“Oh the story so far/ The innocence of aching” “go ahead with colors blinding,/ though we fall we fly “) this is possibly best exemplified in songs such as Story so’fa. Characteristically his music is arranged with haunting vocals and soothing guitar melodies, these two contrasting components work eerily well together. We should warn you that unless you see him play live you wont get the full experience (and believe me you’ll want to!), namely for a couple of songs, chiefly The Hopeful Children. Perhaps this is down to limitations imposed by recording equipment, this isn’t to the advantage of the song (nothing compares to hearing his unrestrained and unhinged laughter!).

Like we mentioned two seconds ago seeing him live is an experience quite unlike any other, he puts on an incredible show. Making each member of the audience feel involved, he has this great personality which engages and enthrals everyone present. When going to an Otti show we’re not sure what we’re looking forward to more, the music or the conversation in-between. He also has a couple of well designed tee shirts on sale, not that we have one (much as we want one!).

We definitely prefer seeing him live, but his album is still awesome and available online for only seven quid (link after the jump) We love the direction he’s taken, its ethereal, progressive, inspiring and scary all at once - he recently finished recording a new album and we cant wait to hear it!

He’s one of the few local bands we’ve seen live who’s actually signed ( and he well deserves it. Album is on sale here:

Words by Suspicious Shades and Captain Harrington

Friday, 7 September 2012

Blue Stragglers: Initial Impressions

We recently had a chance to sit down and give the Blue Stragglers debut E.P a listen. At first you could easily be forgiven for thinking that you were listening to new material from Radiohead, however dig a little deeper and you’re sure to uncover influences from everything from Nine Inch Nails to Queens of the Stone Age and even a little bit of the Black Keys.With solid drum beats, a raw ambient effect, and spine tingling lyrics presented through chilling vocals, they seem to be one of the most haunting bands we have ever had the pleasure of seeing in the flesh.

Hailing from Horsham they have been going steady for at least 5 years now playing their own brand of raucous rock in a variety of local venues including one of our local favourites the Tubman (where we have seen them twice). You can tell they have built up a great relationship with their fans, after each set we’ve enjoyed conversation with each of them - they’re down to earth relaxed guys (not that you would tell from their music) which is again reflected in their eagerness to react with the audience whilst on stage. You could perhaps argue their stagemanship lacks a little, however perhaps this is just a side effect of the music they play; we’re not sure if it would work with them all over the place all the time (This could easily be blamed on the venue, the Tubman is a tiny hell hole after all).

Their songs are characterised by punchy bass riffs and an enticing vocal arrangement which reel you in, in such a way that can be compared to Thom Yorke, haunting and addictive. Each member is a master craftsman of their instruments, incredibly tight and cohesive it’s a setup that works both live and recorded. Of course very few bands can get away with shoddy lyrics, luckily this is an area where the Blue Stragglers excel, slithering into your subconscious they constrict you like a snake, laced with melancholy they sing of things that have been, not that are to come. You keep going back for more even when you know its not necessarily healthy, listening to these guys we couldn’t care less for our health. Perhaps this is best exemplified in the song She (eyes/you’re such a fake disguise/for what I’ll never be). Its hard to put down into writing just quite how we feel listening to them, we recommend you go and listen for yourself perhaps then you’ll understand (

All their songs are great, of that there’s no doubt, between us we can’t quite decide if She or Tall Tales is our favourite. Every fan will relate in a different way and that’s what makes them extraordinary! Their live sets are wicked, their E.P is brilliant and to top it off they’re nice guys - what’s not to love? As if to reinforce the fact that we cant get enough of this band the two of us ended up destroying our prized Blue Stragglers t-shirt (one of the best t-shirt designs we have ever seen) at a festival this year when fighting over who got to wear it (it got heated!)

Health and safety disclaimer
: We would not recommend listening to them following a break up!

Words by Suspicious Shades and Captain Harrington

Wednesday, 5 September 2012

Liffanway and the Magic Dragons: Initial Impressions!

When listening to up and coming local bands such as Liffanway and the Magic Dragons its hard for critics such as ourselves to remain objective, however in the spirit of honest journalism we’ll try our hardest to appear unbiased.

We first met  Liffanway and the Magic Dragons during their 2012 formation when they were a meandering selection of fragmented local talent. We have been part of their avid following for a month now  (surely a badge of pride for any aspiring indie kid) . We’ve watched them grow from wailing alley cats to triumphant, titillating tigers. Stalking the local music scene closely, now’s their time to pounce!

Coming from a collection of other successful bands (ska’d 4 life , stand against reason) theres no doubt they know what there doing ; and it shows. Influences range from bands such as the artic monkeys, the fratellis and madness to their own teenage experiences (perhaps most evident in the hit single crumptons)  leaving us with an assortment of eccentric teens doing what they love best.  There’s clearly no doubt that their an indie band (with all the characteristic twang of the kooks) with a lot to say for themselves. By now it might seem we’re little more than gushing fan boys, and that’s because we are - and believe us, we hate the fact.

The range of their lyrics stretches from discussion of drunken teenage antics to childish nostalgia fuelled love for Disney. Perhaps our favourite is from the song Trust in Me (slip into a silent slumber/sail into the mist/slowly but surely your senses will cease to resist), whilst this is clearly lifted straight from the Jungle Book, it works incredibly in the context of the song, perhaps enhanced by the perfectly engineered and haunting  reverb?  Although we love how far they have come already, you get the sense they have not quite hit their stride yet, it will be interesting to see  if over the next few releases they can push the boundaries of contemporary indie rock and truly go from filler to killer.

We have seen Liffanway and the Magic Dragons play 5 or 6 times now, at a variety of venues from festival fields (not quite mainstage, but close enough to the people that cared) to rooftops, living rooms and even the occasional beach hut. Each experience has been characterised by fun, laughs  and a vibrant atmosphere; they seem to have this great ability to interact with their audience (breaking the fourth wall with style and finesse) making sure everyone has a great time.  One thing we’re particularly excited about is the promise of upcoming merchandise, which will hopefully be on sale at the next few gigs.

In short we can’t state enough - We love Liffanway and the Magic Dragons! They are enthusiastic and talented enough to capture our imaginations (even though they have pulled this together in little over a month) even in spite of some outlandish and occasionally crude lyrics (which if anything make us love them even more!) We hope they get even more outlandish, even more crude for the next few gigs, we cant wait for them - and neither should you!

Even if Eddies scat singing sounds like this….

Words by Suspicious Shades and Captain Harrington