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Summer 2012 saw the release of arguably one of the most original and inspiring albums to ever hit the indie and alternative scene. Alt-J’s debut LP, An Awesome Wave, was so incredibly well-crafted that it bagged them the Mercury prize and album of the year at the Ivor Novella awards. More importantly though it brought experimental, avant-garde art rock/pop (or whatever else you want to attempt to label it as) to the attention of the masses – the band went from practically a secret to media frenzy fodder in a matter of months. They have since spent most of the time relentlessly touring, selling out large venues globally and playing at some of the world’s most popular festivals. Their music has also been used in advertisements and TV shows, and they were even commissioned to write a song, ‘Buffalo’, for the Silver Linings Playbook soundtrack. This month saw the release of This Is All Yours, their highly anticipated second album. Since Alt-J’s breakout, people seem to have developed a taste for this unique styling and that’s where my latest pick, Febueder, step in. Febueder are the reason I’m rattling on about Alt-J since their meteoric rise paved the wave for emerging, experimental bands.
This Ascot-based teenaged trio are incredibly similar in sound to the aforementioned pioneers and their music is as quirky and left-field as their name suggests – for anyone still struggling, I’m told ‘Febueder’ is pronounced similar to ‘Bermuda’. As well as Alt-J, Febueder have also drawn comparisons to psychedelic rockers Animal Collective. It’s a blend of two ends of the spectrum; from the rather sophisticated intricacy and formulaic happenings associated with Alt-J to wild and chaotic brashness synonymous with Animal Collective – a rather contradictory sentiment that the band has found to be “heart-warming” but is undeniably a lot to live up to. Last November they released their debut EP, Soap Carv. It’s a collection of four tracks that proved the hype around them was grounded in substance. It embraces the kind of freedom, playfulness and identity formation that we would expect to come with a debut release, offering listeners a chance to submerge in the material without any preconceptions. This was also the reason for the completely nonsensical name apparently. It’s high-energy and a real banquet for your ears in its depth. They create a busy and attention grabbing soundscape which screams originality and excitement. EP number two, Lilac Lane, is scheduled for an October release and if lead single ‘Owing’ is anything to go by then we’re in for much of the same gorgeous bass lines, syncopated percussion and wailing vocals that were married so well together on their first effort.