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The Big Takeover Issue #94

David Browne

David’s love of post-punk, power pop, new wave, shoegaze, Britpop, dreampop, and ambient music goes back 40 years. He’s been a fervent record collector with acts from labels like Rough Trade, IRS, 4AD, Factory, Fiction, Statik, Midnight Music, Beggar’s Banquet, Red Eye (Sydney), Flying Nun, and more. He’s seen too many bands to mention, coast to coast, having lived blocks away from The Fillmore in San Francisco, and near to Slim’s and Bimbo’s, and in decade’s past at Providence’s Living Room, Lupo’s, and The Rocket.

His love of bands is equaled by his desire to connect directly with them. Way back before the Internet, he chased after Mark Burgess (The Chameleons) and Martin Phillips (The Chills) while on tours, or in letter writing. These days he appreciatively hounds bands via social media. Stuart Adamson (the Hendrix of Scotland, said John Peel) remains his musical hero.

Reach out via email any time!

Chameleons - Where Are You? (EP) (Metropolis)

19 May 2024

The Chameleons are back with their first new music in 11 years. The brand new 3-track “Where Are You? EP” covers all the important bases, featuring a rousing lead track, a cool revisit to a long-lost track, and a foray into the band’s occasional elegiac quiet side. I asked frontman, Mark Burgess, to tell us more about the new music, and the upcoming North American tour that kicks off in San Diego on May 30th.

Stephen’s Shore – Neptune (EP) (Meritorio)

10 May 2024

On the new Stephen’s Shore ”Neptune (EP)” , the California beach, sun, and surf are distilled into three- and four-minute jangle-pop goodness.

The Shop Window – Daysdream (Jangleshop)

2 May 2024

The Shop Window has just released its third—and by far best—album. Building on a solid foundation of jangle-pop and shoegaze, along with superb harmonies characteristic of their prior albums, the band has pushed through a global pandemic with an epically rousing and rich double LP, ”Daysdream”.

Big Bliss – You’re A Man (Single) (Good Eye)

20 April 2024

NYC’s Big Bliss is back with a cracking outtake from their insanely good “Vital Return” LP released last September on Good Eye. Featuring Wallace May’s vocals (with BV’s from normal vocal frontman, Tim Race), the biting lyrics fit the snarling music perfectly.

Martha Johnson and Company – Slow Emotion (Single) (Popguru)

20 April 2024

Singer/keyboardist Martha Johnson (known for her work with Canadian art-pop outfit, Martha & The Muffins), has just released “Slow Emotion” under the Martha Johnson and Company moniker. The uplifting single brings awareness to Parkinson’s disease, which she’s had since 2000, and features an array of musicians who have PD as well.

The Shop Window – Blues (Single) (Jangleshop)

29 March 2024

Kent, UK’s The Shop Window have digitally released their fourth single, “Blues”, ahead of their ambitious double LP, ”Daysdream” coming out in early May. “Blues” sparkles with the band’s trademark jangle, mixing in welcome infusions of RIDE’s “Twisterella” and Teenage Fanclub’s “Songs From Northern Britain” LP.

RIDE – Interplay (Wichita)

15 March 2024

RIDE’s seventh full-length (and third since their reformation 10 years ago) arrives March 29th. Most certainly worth the five-year wait since the last album, “Interplay” builds on their prior two records with cohesiveness and conviction.

The BV's - Taking Pictures ... (Shelflife)

22 February 2024

The BV’s offer up their third long player, continuing to explore indie pop with a dollop of krautrock and shoegaze thrown in for good measure. The resulting bigger, bolder album is rife with jangly riffs and mesmerizing instrumental passages.

Ducks Ltd. – Harms Way (Carpark)

10 February 2024

Efficient, edgy-yet-melodic jangle pop is the order of the day on Ducks Ltd.’s newest and second long player, ”Harm’s Way”.

The Shop Window – Run (Single) (Jangleshop)

25 January 2024

Maidstone, Kent’s The Shop Window is back with another single off the forthcoming third LP, ”Daysdream”. “I Run” is a gorgeous, three-minute melodic miracle.

Shed Seven - A Matter of Time (Cooking Vinyl)

20 January 2024

In sync with their name, Shed Seven has just released a cracking new record seven years after the last one. “A Matter of Time” rings with up-tempo, riff-laden glory, and has already charted at #1 in the UK.

SWiiMS – Into the Blue Night (Mint 400)

11 November 2023

Toronto’s shoegazey dream poppers SWiiMS are back with their first album, ”Into The Blue Night”. Long story short, it was well worth the wait since their stellar 2020 EP.

The Shop Window – A World Where We Remain (Single) (Jangle Shop)

29 October 2023

“A World Where We Remain”, the dreamy, jangly second single from The Shop Window is out November 10th. This gem from Maidstone, Kent’s indie pop merchants will be the lead track on an ambitious forthcoming third album, ”Daysdream” coming in 2024.

Sea Ray – "Lashes" single and LP remaster (Bodan Kuma)

22 October 2023

New York’s Sea Ray is back after an 18 year break with a smashing new single, “Lashes”, and a 20th anniversary remaster of their chamber rock album, 2003’s ”Stars at Noon”, coming December 2nd.

Emma Anderson – Pearlies (Sonic Cathedral)

18 October 2023

Emma Anderson, guitarist and songwriter of shoegaze legends, Lush, releases her first solo record, “Pearlies” on Sonic Cathedral October 20. Largely written and performed on her own, the welcome album successfully blends Lush’s shimmering dreampop with electronic and psych-folk elements producing ghostly, cinematic pop songs across 10 tracks.

The Julies – Always & Always (Lost in Ohio)

28 September 2023

After releasing two indie rock/Britpop-soaked EPs in the 90s, The Julies have sufficiently nabbed our attention with their outstanding first full-length LP, out September 29.

Gareth Koch – Ghost Stories (Foghorn Records)

16 September 2023

”Ghost Stories” is Gareth Koch’s newest instrumental album; an evolution he says that builds off of ”Songs From Another Life” with Steve Kilbey and “Music in the Afterlife” with Martin Kennedy. Dreamy and steeped in lushly layered guitars, the album incorporates elements of classical, prog-rock, and ambient music, referencing music past and present.

Big Bliss - Vital Return (Good Eye)

10 September 2023

Formed in late 2015, Brooklyn-based Big Bliss is back with ”Vital Return”. Composed during Covid and amidst an array of setbacks and challenges, their liberating newly released second LP brims with superbly crafted melancholic and intense tunes.

Cowboy Junkies – Such Ferocious Beauty (Cooking Vinyl)

4 June 2023

The stellar new *Cowboy Junkies” record captures the band reflecting on death and loss, while firing on all cylinders and engaging listeners with their signature sound.

Constant Smiles – Kenneth Anger (Sacred Bones)

24 April 2023

I recently caught up with Ben Jones from Constant Smiles to ask him about the new LP, ”Kenneth Anger” that came out in early March. The captivating album from Ben and his “collective” of band members flows with gorgeous indie dreampop/synth-pop.

Big Bliss - A Seat at the Table (single) (Good Eye)

8 April 2023

Swirling with R.E.M. —infused sparks, the powerful new single, “A Seat at the Table”, from NYC trio Big Bliss surges and uplifts musically while capturing the grim reality of daily gun violence in America.

Flyying Colours - You Never Know

25 March 2023

Just out March 10th, psych-shoegaze jangle merchants, Flyying Colours, have crafted a truly outstanding new LP. Their third album delivers 10 dreampop tunes with bite that will immerse and wash over you.

Philip Selway – Strange Dance (Bella Union)

11 March 2023

In his third and most rewarding solo record to date, Radiohead drummer Philip Selway has scored with “Strange Dance”. Blending artful orchestral arrangements and outstanding songwriting, he explores life’s deepest themes with candor and curiosity.

Gareth Koch & Martin Kennedy - Music in The Afterlife (Foghorn Records)

25 February 2023

Gareth Koch and Martin Kennedy have come together to make ”Music In The Afterlife” after collaborating separately with The Church’s Steve Kilbey. Playing to each other’s complementary strengths, the two have produced a magical new instrumental album that’s a much-needed salve for bleak and uncertain times.

bdrmm – “It’s Just a Bit of Blood” single and 2nd LP coming in June

11 February 2023

bdrmm’s new single, “It’s Just a Bit of Blood” meanders and surges with epic dream pop— and shoegaze—drenched results. Now we have to wait til June 30th for the LP, “I Don’t Know”.

New Music “…In the Void”

4 February 2023

Hammock and The Reds, Pinks, and Purples have each recently released music around the theme of “the void.” Hammock writes of “love in the void” while RPP sings of “life in the void.” With uncannily similar themes from music released just a few days apart, the results are outstanding and dramatically different. Dive in.

Old Town Crier – “You” EP (Self released)

14 January 2023

Old Town Crier (aka Jim Lough) quietly put out the “You” EP last summer. Over the Christmas break I listened in enthusiastically and asked him to tell us all about it, and what’s next in 2023.

Modern Studies – “Cassandra” EP (Fire Records)

17 December 2022

Scotland’s Modern Studies just released its latest 8-track EP “Cassandra”. Armed with vintage instruments, the band has further mapped a wonderfully fresh and somewhat uncharted niche of arty chamber folk pop.

The Shop Window – “A 4 Letter Word” (Spinout Nuggets)

10 December 2022

Two albums in, The Shop Window has dived into the warm sound of jangle pop with outstanding results. The Kent, UK band’s ”A 4 Letter Word” has just been released on limited edition vinyl and is a record I can’t stop playing.

Trashcan Sinatras - Lay of the Land (EP) (Last Night From Glasgow)

25 November 2022

Scotland’s Trashcan Sinatras released “Lay of the Land” over the summer as a digital-only release. A new physical-format EP (12” orange vinyl or CD) with three bonus b-sides is fresh off the press.

Big Bliss - Sleep Paralysis (single) (self-released)

14 November 2022

“Sleep Paralysis” marks Big Bliss’ first new music in four years. The Brooklyn band has been biding their time through the depths of Covid and recently surfaced with their latest single. Expanding on their trademark edgy, angular post-punk exploration, I asked founder Tim Race to bring Big Takeover readers up to speed on the single and the upcoming second album.

Columbia Mills – “Heart of a Nation” (Self-released)

2 November 2022

Ireland’s Columbia Mills may not be widely known in the US, even among Big Takeover readers, but their post-punk—infused, indie-electronic music is a perfect fit. Bassist, Uisneagh Treacy, recently discussed the band and their outstanding new LP, “Heart of a Nation” with me.

Lumenette – “All Around My Head” (Hammock Music)

22 October 2022

Lumenette has released their debut album, “All Around My Head.” Vocalist Christine Byrd has created a sonic stunner built on the gorgeous post-rock and ambient instrumentals of her husband’s Nashville-based outfit, Hammock. This is a must listen.


15 October 2022

Just three years out from being minted as a Rock & Roll Hall of Famer with Roxy Music, Brian Eno returns with his 22nd solo LP. Adding vocals to many of his compositions, the new record paints a thoughtful, artful, dreamy, and bleak emotional portrait of our planet at present. Listen in.

Weyes Blood – "It's Not Just Me, It's Everybody" and new LP (Sub Pop, 2022)

23 September 2022

Weyes Blood (Natalie Mering) just announced her new full-length, “And in the Darkness, Hearts Aglow” (Sub Pop, 2022), out November 18th. The first track, “It’s Not Just Me, It’s Everybody” perfectly sets the tone, musically and lyrically, simultaneously balancing themes of loneliness and hope.

Paul Thomas Saunders – "Bloodlust" (single) and "Figure In A Landscape" LP (sevenfoursevensix)

17 September 2022

Brighton, UK-based Paul Thomas Saunders has come back from an extended break after his first album, “Beautiful Desolation” (Atlantic, 2014). His new LP, “Figure in a Landscape”, is out October 21st (sevenfoursevensix). The dramatic single, “Bloodlust”, was released September 1st.

The Church  - "The Hypnogogue" cover art

The Church - "The Hypnogogue" (Unorthodox)

6 September 2022

The newest single from Australia’s long-running psych-rock outfit comes out in advance of their 26th album and touring. The slow-building and mesmerizing single is a standout in recent memory. Enjoy the ride.