Posts in SKOA Presents
[SKOA Presents] The BBC 6 Music Blog Awards 2013

Has it really been a year since we last did this? Oh how time flies when you're having fun, that's how the saying goes, isn't it?! Anyway, the good folk at the BBC and the amazing 6 Music have been kind enough to ask us back for another round of awards and we're having our own category again and need to get you guys involved once more. Last year we picked...The Album of the Year That You Never, Ever Skipped a Track On...Ever. And the winner was Bon Iver's beautiful self titled album. A tonne of awesome blogs are once again involved this year and the show will air later this week.

This year we threw some ideas together but the one that stuck was this: "The EP or Single That Has(Had) You Most Excited About A Full Release"

There's several that immediately have jumped to the front for us personally but hey, we wouldn't be awesome without you guys, so of course we want your opinions and your suggestions. We'll have a winner this weekend and the show will run from 6-8pm on Sunday Feb 24th on BBC 6 Music so get your votes and suggestions in ASAP!

To vote you can leave a comment below or hit us up on Facebook or Twitter but be sure to @ reply us and include the hashtag #Blog6Music so we don't miss any votes! The awards ceremony is set to take place this Friday on BBC 6 Music, from 7PM onwards and are presented by the wonderful Tom Robinson. START VOTING NOW and show your love for your favourite album. We'll add a shortlist later today of the front runners but for now, anything goes... 

Our shortlist:

The 1975 - Sex EP

David Bowie - "Where Are We Now"

Disclosure - "White Noise" Feat. AlunaGeorge

[SKOA Presents] The 1975

I don't know if you've noticed, but it's 2013. Not only that but January is nearly over and time seems to be melting away unlike the bloody rubbish weather hitting the UK right now. I've celebrated my birthday, started the year in New York and now I'm sat at a desk in a very cold Manchester counting the days until the weekend. Normality has resumed and I am well and truly in need of things to look forward to. Step forward Manchester's The 1975. We've talked about the four-piece before with tracks such as "You" and "Sex", but  I think 2013 is the year we'll truly see them shine. Plus, it's always nice to have things to look forward to. 

So what do we have to look forward to from The 1975 this year I hear you cry? Plenty. That's what. The band have just announced a new EP, following up last year's Sex, and they've set its release for March 4th via the ever trusty Dirty Hit. Music For Cars (yeah, how good of an EP title is that!?) is bound to be a riot. Lead track "Chocolate" can be heard below and it sure is a sweet treat. If you've seen these guys live no doubt you'll know it already. The band are also planning a full-length release later in the year and have been busy co-producing it with the award-winning Mike Crossey (Arctic Monkeys, Foals). That's just the start.

In March they'll make a trip to Austin, Texas to perform some shows at the magical music pilgrimage known as SXSW and prior to that they've penned in even more UK dates. Yes, more UK dates! I think they'll need a fair few Now That's What I Call Music compilation discs for the tour bus and not just Music For Cars! Check out the dates below and keep your eyes well and truly peeled for more from these guys. We'll be sure to keep you in the loop. We'll be catching up with the band soon for a chat about what more you can expect from them in 2013. They'll be everywhere by the end of the year, and we'll be right there with 'em. 

The 1975 2013 Tour Dates 

Mon 28th Jan - Sheffield - Soyo 

Wed 30th Jan - Bristol - Exchange

Thu 31st Jan - Guildford - Boileroom 

Fri 1st Feb - Aldershot - West End Centre

Sat 2nd Feb - Birmingham - Temple 

Mon 4th Feb - Cambridge - Portland Arms

Tue 5th Feb - Exeter - Cavern 

Wed 6th Feb - Chelmsford - Hooga

Thu 7th Feb - Kingston - New Slang

Fri 8th Feb - Brighton - Green Door Store

Sat 9th Feb - Southampton - Lennons 

Mon 11th Feb - Liverpool - Shipping Forecast

Tue 12th Feb - Middlesbrough - Mixtape @ Keys

Wed 13th Feb - Nottingham - Bodega

Thu 14th Feb - Chester - The Compass

Fri 15th Feb - Preston - 53 Degrees

Sat 16th Feb - Manchester - Deaf Institute 10pm curfew

Mon 18th Feb - London - Borderline 

[SKOA Presents] Some Kind of Mixtape: October 2012

So this month's mixtape is terribly late but it doesn't discount how great all the selections this month are! As the year is coming to a close we're starting to get some previews of what we can expect for the beginning of 2013 as well as rounding out a year of great music. As always, you can read about the selections after the jump and be sure to follow us on our mixtape medium of choice on 8tracks.

<3 <3 <3

kibbe, rocko, shey & adrian

Some Kind of Mixtape - October 2012 from skoablog on 8tracks Radio.


Ace Reporter - "Untouched & Arrived"

Ever since we premiered Ace Reporter's "Untouched & Arrived" it has turned into one of those ear worms that will get stuck in your head for days on end. Fortunately, that's a very good thing, as it always seems to resurface in my brain at times where I'm stressing out the most as a way to calm me down. If this is an indicator of what we can expect from his upcoming debut album, Yearling, we will most certainly be starting 2013 off right. - kibbe!

Black Moth Super Rainbow - "I Think I'm Evil"

It's been a while since the release of BMSR's last album Eating Us. I, like the rest of the hardcore BMSR fans, have been patiently waiting for the groups return and oh did they return. The groups latest LP Cobra Juicy is all and then some. It brings a nice polished feel to it while remaining weird and original as we expected from the continuously evolving experiment band. Take a listen to one of my favorite cuts from the album "I Think I'm Evil" from the album the band classifies as Demon Skater music. Enjoy! - Rocko 

Wazu - "Councillor"

With the release of their debut full length on Halloween, it was only natural that Wazu's lead single, "Councillor" be included in this month's mix due to the reaction I had the first time I heard it. After spending a lot of time with their self-titled EP, this first cut from Robobo had me even more excited about the band then the first time I heard them. Unlike the EP, this time around singer-guitarist Matt is fearless behind the microphone to a point where he can make the little hairs on the back of your neck stand on end while Rizz carefully sends chills down your spine. A lot of growth in only a few months since the EP. I expect to continue to hear more great things from the duo in the coming year. - kibbe!

AlunaGeorge - "Your Drums Your Love"

Every now and again I hear a song that just just automatically puts me in a good mood. Vicious hangover? Forget it, cured! Can't be bothered with work? Wooosh, it's gone once you hit play. This track from AlunaGeorge does that for me. It may perk me up but the lyrics touch upon a turbulent relationship, and it's as though we're looking in but we never truly find out the answer. Nevertheless, I find this track is a great way to start the day, so see if you do too The track is out now and we can expect a full length from them next year. - Shey

Hot Sugar - "Honeycomb Hideout" ft. Aaron Livingston + Izza Kizza

I said it once and i'll say it again, I need some more Hot Sugar and Aaron Livingston in my life. The duo known as Young Vipers (Hot Sugar and Aaron Livingston), along with Timbaland protege Izza Kizza, hook up for another astounding track from Hot Sugar's latest FrEP Midi Murder. Sugar's sexy production comes correct with The Hunter S Thompson of R&B (Livingston) dropping an even sexier hook and the contribution of some dope rhymes from Kizza make this track an absolute banger. Check out the track on this mix and head here to download Hot Sugar's newest EP which features more dope beats and nice guest features. - Rocko 

Local Natives - "Breakers"

I've seen Local Natives once in concert, but that one experience solidified them as one of my favorites in the muddied waters of indie rock. Their debut album Gorilla Manor has seen its fair share of replay over the past three years, and deservedly so. The album had captivating instrumentation, great harmonies, and a cohesive sound, but most of all it had charm and personality. Local Natives is a band that has fun when they play, putting their individuality forth in a genuine way. That mentality stays true with the band's new single "Breakers", the first song from their upcoming sophomore LP Hummingbird. Everything the band does so well, the harmonies, the quirky and alluring combination of instruments, and the charm, all finds a rightful home here. January 29th isn't too long of a wait, right? - Adrian

Foals - "Inhaler"

So I did have another track in my last spot before the whole madness of the last few weeks took hold of everyone but that all changed earlier this week. Back with one hell of a big bang are Foals with a brand new album announcement in the shape of Holy Fire for February next year. Teasing fans with this track titled "Inhaler" it starts with a foot stomping delicate guitar line and a vocal hook that not many ill be able to sing along to (well). What grabbed me by the hair and iced me in the nuts about the track though was the heavy guitar riff after the chorus. Turn it up loud and look forward to 2013 and more new sounds from these guys. - Shey

Kendrick Lamar - "good kid"

Kendrick Lamar's major label debut good kid, m.A.A.d. city was well worth the wait, but in the end it's pretty hard to deny that the Compton rapper aimed for a darker, more depressing tone on the album. That's why the track "good kid" stood out so much, as it envelops the brooding lyrics of Lamar in a mellow, Wu-Tang-style beat that works amazingly well. But seriously, with The Neptunes on production duties, how could it not be amazing? - Adrian

Toro Y Moi - "So Many Details"

Speaking honestly here, I wasn't the biggest fan of Toro Y Moi to begin with. His sophomore album Underneath the Pine took quite some time to grow on me, but it was ultimately Chaz Bundick's debut Causers of This that roped me in. The funky beats, the mellow vibe, the '70s and '80s throwback style, it all worked so well and has made Toro Y Moi a mainstay in my music library. When I heard "So Many Details" for the first time, it reminded me instantly of why I enjoy listening to Toro Y Moi: atmosphere. As an enthusiast of chilled out, downtempo beats, there was no need for a sales pitch, I was sold. What can I say, I'm a sucker for good music. - Adrian

The D.O.T. - "Right Side of Madness"

After waiting months following my first listen of the new project from Mike Skinner (The Streets) and Robert Harvey (The Music) in the form of "And A Hero", I knew that the debut album from The D.O.T.. And That, was going to speak to me in a way that I have wanted an album to do so in months. It did not disappoint me when it dropped last month, specifically with songs like "Right Side of Madness". Once again as he did on "And A Hero", Harvey delivers a vocal performance that will kick you right in the feels. The give and take happening between Skinner and Harvey for the album as a whole yielded a much more deeper emotional response than I had been expecting, as I wasn't exactly sure what to assume from the two of them.  One thing's for sure, it's definitely one of my favorite albums of the year. - kibbe!

 Alt-J - "Taro"

So as I've mentioned I witnessed one of my all time favourite gigs a few weeks ago and the band that I witnessed was Alt-J. The lads have since gone on to win the prestigious Mercury Music Prize for their wonderful album An Awesome Wave. An album that sounds like each intricate noise is meant to be there and is placed perfectly. Album close "Taro" has come to be my favourite with it sounding a little different from the rest while similar too. Nice use of kids shouting "Hey taros!" mid way through too. A perfect end to one of my favourite albums from this year, it seemed fitting to put it on here this month as we begin to round out the year. - Shey

Adrian Younge Presents The Delfonics - "Stop and Look (And You Have Found Love)"

To most the name Adrian Younge doesn't ring a bell much. Now if you see the movie Black Dynamite or its recent cartoon series on Adult Swim, you have heard his soulful tunes already as he provides most of the score for both. Aside from the score, Younge and his band Venice Dawn released an album titled Something About April, a nice soulful album that feels like a throwback to the motion era and he recently collabed with Brainfeeder producer The Gaslamp Killer on his newest album. Younge is currently set to release 2 new albums, one is a collaboration with Ghostface Killah titled 13 Reasons To Die and the i'm super excited about which  marks return of the legendary Delfonics. Take a listen to this awesome single above its so throwback its perfect. - Rocko 

[SKOA Premiere] Ace Reporter - "Untouched And Arrived"

With the slew of bands hustling to make a name for themselves in a place like New York, it becomes a seemingly impossible task to sift through it all to find the diamonds in the rough. Take for example, Brooklyn based band Ace Reporter, who I share the same stomping ground of a borough with. I was completely unaware of their existence until just recently. Once I laid ears on "Untouched And Arrived", however, I had to have the full lowdown on these guys. The story goes that after his former band The States broke up, longtime musician and frontman for Ace Reporter, Chris Snyder spent all of 2010 writing and recording a song per day, which he appropriately dubbed the threesixfive project. From there, Snyder took the best songs from all 365 of his creations and throughout the spring of 2011 poured over the songs to see if he could transform them beyond their inception. The results of his refining eventually were shaped in the form of his upcoming full-length debut, Yearling, which is slated for a February 2013 release.

"Untouched And Arrived" was a already a gem of a song as you can hear from the threesixfive version. Clearly Snyder took a lot of elbow grease to it in order to give it the polish and sparkle that it rightfully deserved. The final product is crisp like an early autumn morning and the vibrato in his vocals during the chorus are sure to send a slight bit of goosebumps down the side of your body. I am anxious to hear more from Yearling as we are still a few months out of February, but for now will be more than satisfied to come back to this song again and again.

Have a listen and download "Untouched And Arrived".

If you're in the NYC area, be sure to catch him next week during at least one of his three CMJ shows:

10/16/2012 | New York, NY | CMJ Ooh La La Showcase | Studio @ Webster Hall | 8pm

10/17/2012 | Brooklyn, NY | Deli Magazine CMJ Showcase | Spike Hill | 8pm

10/20/2012 | Brooklyn, NY | 24 West CMJ Showcase | Legion Bar | 4pm


[SKOA Presents] Some Kind of Mixtape: September 2012

Some Kind of Mixtape - September from skoablog on 8tracks Radio.

It's the most wonderful time of the yearrrrrrr.... well, for releases anyways. Now that fall is officially hear, everyone and their next door neighbor are releasing something (or are about to) and we are more than ready to embrace them all with open ears. Don't be surprised if we end up doing multiple mixes a month for awhile to make sure that none of the good stuff makes it to the cutting room floor in the SKOA HQ. Please enjoy Some Kind of Mixtape: September 2012  courtesy of the 8tracks player above. Make sure you head over to 8tracks and check out our other mixtapes, to. Oh, and as always, make sure you have a look below to learn more about the tracks selected for this mix.


kibbe, rocko, shey & adrian


Tame Impala - "Elephant"

When they released their debut in 2010 I was kind of indifferent towards them. Not because I didn't like what I heard but I don't think I let myself listen to Tame Impala all that much around my normal listening patterns. With album two this will not be happening. Lead single from Lonerism is a psych-rock chug of a track called "Elephant" and yeah, it's been floating around the net since back in July but it's a bloody great track that just gets better and better with each listen. The album is just as good and set for release next week on October 9th so why not pick it up. - Shey

P.O.S. - "Fuck Your Stuff"

For the 2nd month in a row, Doomtree rhyme spitter P.O.S. makes it on our SKoA mixtape with his 2nd single "Fuck Your Stuff" from the upcoming album We Don't Even Live Here dropping later this month. The Lazerbeak production on the track has a nice mainstream rap feeling but P.O.S. keeps the track true to his roots with his anti-material rhymes and punk demeanor making this one to bump loudly in your whip while flying your rebellion flag high. - Rocko

Lucius - "Turn It Around"

I simply cannot stop championing NYC band Lucius. I am so proud of how far they come, especially with tracks like "Turn It Around" off their most recent self-titled EP. The song stomps through your ear drums as singers Holly Laessig and Jess Wolfe boldy belt and blend their beautiful vocals and walk you through the trails of a girl  who is unable to let go of a failed relationship. The sheer power in this song as well as the rest of the EP is why I can't stop coming back to it. - Kibbe

Ricky Eat Acid - "(stay)"

Sam Ray's ambient soundscapes are always a pleasure to indulge in, and "(stay)" is in no way different. Using a somewhat out-of-left-field Ashanti sample, the producer builds around it with a pounding haziness and echoing synthesizers. It's easy to get lost in the dreamy sounds that Ricky Eat Acid offers here. Who knew Ashanti was still a viable presence in music? - Adrian

Deftones - "Leathers"

We've been waiting for Deftones new album for what seems like forever. I'm exaggerating of course but their last studio release was Diamond Eyes and with that they raised the already high bar they'd set themselves. That album was devine to listen to from front to back and their new tease of LP number seven, Koi No Yokan, seems to have picked up just where that one left off. Titled "Leathers" it's a rather chilled out introduction before your head is knocked off your shoulders with Chino's screech of a vocal. It's the kind of track your parents might tell you to turn down if you're living at home with it on yet all you want to do is turn it up louder. The new album is set for release on November 12th via Reprise and we are oh so excited. - Shey

Breakbot - "Break of Dawn"

It's hard for me to talk about Breakbot without comparing his music to my favorite Daft Punk album, Discovery. With the release of his debut LP, By Your Side, Breakbot brings back the funk with his signature electronic disco style which will keep you grooving all night long and again reminds me of all my favorite parts of Daft Punk's sophomore album. Don't believe me? Take a listen for yourself with the opening track "Break of Dawn". By Your Side is out in Europe and we hope to see a stateside release very soon. - Rocko

Blackbird Blackbird - "All"

My addiction to Blackbird Blackbird has everything to do with how effortless every lushly layered track that they release seems to be. "All" is no exception to this. Since we first met the electronic outfit it's quite apparent that they have most certainly continued to step up their game. This time around they pair dark hazy vocals with bright chiming synths and gentle murmurring guitars. Definitely worth grabbing for yourself. - Kibbe

Patchwork - "Cigarettes"

If there is anything Patchwork absolutely nails with every release, it's mood. The guy knows how to evoke a certain atmosphere and emotion in his songs, such that it translates seamlessly to the listener. "Cigarettes" is the type of song perfectly fitting for those nights where you find yourself in the city late at night, being swept up in all kinds of crazy experiences and meeting new people left and right. It has a certain mystery to it, a sense of ambiguity and curiosity that urges you to continue listening, despite the uncertainty. It is charming yet skeptical, a song that is somehow as addicting as its title implies. - Adrian

Danny! - "Evil"

It's been a long time coming for Danny Swain who has been trying to out his latest record Payback for the last few year. After running the gauntlet and overcoming the label circus, Danny! has found a home with buddy ?uestlove of The Roots and his newly revamped OkayPlayer label. After being signed to the label, Danny dropped the first official single from Payback titled "Evil" featuring Gavin Castleton and Amber Rose Tamblyn which I haven't been able to stop playing since its release and witnessing Danny's domination of Jimmy Fallon performing the track alongside The Legendary Roots Crew. Payback is out now. Go pick it up. - Rocko

Muse - "Panic Station"

Haters gonna hate. I've been an avid Muse fan for quite some time and with each release they get more and more wacky and crazy. Their new album The 2nd Law is no exception and with it being released this week the world over people are struggling to find a set theme for the album. It jumps from genre to genre like a fly on crap but if you throw enough of said crap at a wall it's bound to stick eventually, right? Some indeed does and an early favourite of mine is track three; a funk filled, slap base heavy eccentric piece just showcases how well Muse can be Muse when they want to be. Yeah they're going to be everywhere for the next 12 months or so but so be it, when they can go from playing heavy RATM riffs to something like this and then a dance-filled Dad rock number all in the space of 10 minutes it's going to get weird. - Shey

Y LUV - "Driftin"

Following their EP How Chill Can You Let Go comes a new track, "Driftin" from LA rockers Y LUV. This time around the four-piece show a new depth that they hadn't explored in tracks like, "All Night" as the song slowly gets ahold of your heart strings and refuses to let you go until the very end. It's easily just as beautiful as it is heartbreaking. "Driftin" is off their new EP, It Doesn't Have To Make Sense, which was released yesterday. You can stream it over on Soundcloud.

Teen Daze - "Garden 2" (from his upcoming LP The Inner Mansions)

I've listened to this song over and over since Vancouver producer Teen Daze dropped it two weeks ago, and every single time I come to the same conclusion: the song is absolutely stunning. In a way that quickly recalls the tranquility that Sigur Rós so often exemplifies, "Garden 2" is a beautiful and dazzling arrangement. It is a sensory overload, yes, but one that you want to submerge yourself in and listen again and again. I tweeted this to Teen Daze yesterday, and it sums up this song nicely: ""Garden 2" is an amazingly tranquil song. I just wanna lay in a field and smoke with a pair of headphones on." 'Nuff said. - Adrian

[SKOA Presents] Some Kind of Mixtape: August 2012

Things are slowly but steadily starting to cool off as summer comes to an end. It seems once we all stopped running around doing our collective festival and bar hopping that we all were able to focus on things that we've been missing out on that we hold dear to our hearts. For Shey, he was missing sweet ass guitar riffs, Rocko was in dire need of a new P.O.S. & Kid Koala fix, I've missed obsessing over vocalists and Adrian was keeping his ear to the ground for some rich new sounds from bands both new and old(er). Thanks to Shey, I can happily say this is one of the louder mixtapes that we've done in awhile. With that said, please enjoy Some Kind of Mixtape: August 2012. Make sure you follow us on 8tracks and let us know what you think of our picks!

<3 your SKOA fam,

kibbe, rocko, shey & adrian


Some Kind of Mixtape - August from skoablog on 8tracks Radio.

Biffy Clyro - "Stingin' Belle"

When a band releases a single ahead of an album, especially when it's a band you hold close to your heart you can't help but be a little nervous. With Biffy Clyro, they're about to follow up the highly successful Revolutions with Opposites recorded with Garth Richardson. The aforementioned first single is titled "Stingin' Bell" and it opens up with a ferocity of early Biffy yet it grows into an arena filling track, even casually throwing in bag-pipes like it's no big deal in the bridge. It's fair to say after the first listen I was happy that the band were back on top form and hadn't slowed their ever growing pace. I expect big things next year upon the release of the album.—Shey

Plugs - "Set Fire"

I've been on this band's bandwagon since day one when frontman Morgan Quaintance announced that he was leaving Does It Offend You, Yeah? and be working on new music with his band, Plugs. After about 3-4 years since they emerged on the scene, Plugs have finally released their self titled debut earlier this week and it does not disappoint. Check out the rocking track "Set Fire" off their new album. - Rocko

Bloc Party - "We Are Not Good People"

Bloc Party's triumphant return happened a few weeks ago with the release of their long awaited album, Four. The track I've picked from their album is the last on the album and after my first play of the LP in full it just stuck with me. A brash and in your face riff heavy track that I did not expect. I say that yet others on the album like "Coliseum" and "3x3" are also 'big' but this, "We Are Not Good People" is just phenomenal. I've always loved these guys and this is just an awesome track from and awesome band. Pick up their album if you haven't already!—Shey

Big Black Delta - "Betamax"

Team SKOA fell pretty hard for Big Black Delta when BBDLP1 was released last year, so naturally when some of the songs were being re-released as part of his tour EP for his recent tour where he was supporting Janes Addiction, M83 and even headlining some shows himself I jumped at the chance to re-state just how much we love "Betamax". Between the dark sensual synths and singer Jonathan Bates' chilling falsetto in the chorus, it's hard for your heart to not feel lighter and to find your hips involuntarily swaying. - Kibbe

Young Cairo - "Ghosts"

Although relatively unknown and yet to release more than a single song, Young Cairo has incredible talent. The moment I heard his debut single "Ghosts", I was immediately sold. From start to finish the song is pure fun, a relentless barrage of summery guitar riffs and energetic vocals. This is the kind of song that would perfectly soundtrack a day at the beach, with waves crashing, people laughing, and good times to be had all around. Not too shabby for a debut.—Adrian

Trash Talk - "F.E.B.N."

Trash Talk are set to make some noise in October when they release the follow up to Eyes & Nines, and last year's EP Awake, in the shape of 119. Our first taste of that album is 1 and a half minutes of in your face bass heavy hardcore that will make you want to stomp your feet and smash things. I got introduced to these guys a few years ago by a friend and after witnessing their chaos in a live setting shortly after I was converted into a fan. More energy than a kid after 3 packs of Smarties. Very much looking forward to the LP's release.—Shey

Birds & Batteries - "Be My Girl"

From their latest album Stray Light, "Be My Girl" is one of the most beautifully heavy songs I've heard in a good while. With every thud of the bass and the sincerity in singer Mike Serpent's voice it manages to slowly start tugging away at your heart strings. If you manage to catch them on their current tour I highly recommend it. You can have a look at dates here. - Kibbe


Wild Nothing - "Paradise"

Wild Nothing's sound has always been grounded in '80s nostalgia, and his sophomore album Nocturne hasn't lost that one bit. In fact, it is even more wrapped up in this nostalgia than his debut LP Gemini. The song "Paradise" is a shining example of this. Beginning with sweeping wave synths and deep, groovy basslines, the track evokes all kinds of '80s-influenced goodness. Catchy rhythmic guitar riffs, strangely alluring flutes, and Jack Tatum's deep, wandering voice all work amazingly well together, resulting in five-and-half-minutes that you will want to repeat over and over again.—Adrian

P.O.S. - "Bumper"

Our favorite Doomtree returns with a vengeance with the first single from his upcoming album, We Don't Even Live Here. Much like his previous single "Drumroll" off the album Never Better, P.O.S. continues to push the envelope with his style of punk and hip hop and this time around adding a lil electronic/industrial feel to his sound. After hearing just one track from his new album I, myself am on the edge of my seat anticipating the release of the new album and the always entertaining live show from P.O.S. and crew. - Rocko

Kid Koala - "8 bit blues (Chicago to LA to NY)"
As some may already know, i'm a big fan of innovative DJ/Producers who continue to push their craft beyond just the basic mixing and scratching of hip hop tracks (i.e. DJ Shadow, RJD2, Dan The Automator). So of course it comes to no surprise that we wouldn't be excited for Kid Koala's upcoming LP 12 Bit Blues. The new album has 12 wonderful tracks mixed with dirty drum breaks, soulful blues and Koala signature scratch technique and feels like what I would have on repeat if I owned a modern day Saloon. Check out one of the first tracks from the album, "8 Bit Blues" and make sure you pick this album when it drops later this month. - Rocko

Grizzly Bear - "Yet Again"

Every song from Grizzly Bear's upcoming album Shields has already proven that the Brooklyn outfit is expanding their sound, exploring more aggressive avenues and tinkering with their old formula. "Yet Again" fits right into the band's new mentality, never letting go from the moment the first drum kick hits. Every high and low moment is never without a dazzling array of instrumentation, drawing you deeper and deeper into the brash soundscape they have created. If "Yet Again" is any indication, Shields looks to be the most impressive Grizzly Bear project to date.—Adrian

Ultraista - "Bad Insect"  

I am nothing short of delighted to have been caught up to speed on Nigel Godrich's latest project, Ultraista. There is something about their latest single, "Bad Insect" that feels so oddly familiar but in the best of all possible ways. Something in Laura Bettinson's voice is so interesting and calming at the same time that it just sort of makes me want to put the track on repeat for about an hour. The song comes from the bands forthcoming self-titled debut that is scheduled to drop on October 2nd courtesy of Temporary Residence. Additionally the band has some dates coming up in the US that would be foolish to miss out on. - Kibbe

[Outside Lands 2012] Three Mesmerizing Light Shows That We Can't Wait to See

This Friday marks the beginning of this year's Outside Lands Festival in San Francisco, the fifth edition of the cultural highlight. SKOA will be attending the festival this year, and each day leading up to the festival we will be dishing out a feature focused on the bands set to appear at Outside Lands. Today, our spotlight is focused on the top three light shows we can't wait to see during the festival.

Every live performance hinges on the talent of the musicians themselves and their ability to convey their music in a live setting, but that's not the only important aspect; a truly great concert reaches that status through the perfect combination of the music itself in conjunction with an absolutely mesmerizing light show. Nothing compares to being front row at a concert and hearing a beloved song live, only to have every kick of the drum met with entrancing flashes of light, each low moment combined with a dimming atmosphere, and every high met with a grand array of colors and illumination. Most concerts have good light shows, but some seem to stand out above the rest. Take a look at the top three picks for this year's Outside Lands Festival after the jump.

Justice: The French electronic duo has made a name for themselves with their grimy, industrial brand of Paris house, and it translates beautifully to the live setting. Justice clearly put a lot of effort into their light show, with every hard-hitting delivery of the drum kick accompanied by pulsating flashes of light, walls of light drawing the drug-fueled crowds into a trance, and colors so vibrant it's impossible not to look away.

What makes their shows truly unique, though, is their use of the cross imagery. It has appeared on the cover of each of their studio full-lengths (both and Audio, Video, Disco), and during live performances they prop up a massive, illuminated cross right in the middle of their modular synthesizer prop. It's such iconic imagery, and the duo has very intelligently utilized it. What is there to not get excited about?

Sigur Rós: What is there to say about Sigur Rós gorgeous, unique soundscapes? How could I describe my excitement for seeing them live? The Icelandic quartet has been drowning my eardrums in beautiful, ambient music for nearly a decade, and the odd stylings of their music and their personas is what makes their live performances so unique. Jónsi alone is so strange and out there that the allure is beyond questioning.

The idea of witnessing Sigur Rós' live music backed with a colorful, dream-like light show is the truly alluring aspect, though, and online videos aren't enough to satisfy the desire. What could compare to hearing "Sæglópur" amongst a dazzling display of colors and streams of light? I'll just have to see for myself.

Explosions In The Sky: This Texas post-rock outfit might not be the first band that comes to mind when speaking of mesmerizing light shows, but it's the combination of their music and the live setting that excites me. The band has become known for their sprawling, lengthy musical compositions, with echoing guitar riffs, expansive percussion coming together to form beautifully atmospheric and cohesive songs. It's difficult to form such immersive sounds, but these guys pull it off without a hitch. Place this in a live setting, and something amazing is bound to happen.

Explosive percussion, a distant, distorted guitar juxtaposed by a beautifully rhythmic one, captivating sounds coming from all angles amidst a hypnotizing-yet-subtle shower of lights; slow-rising instrumentation building to an eventual frantic climax met with a well-timed burst of illumination. This is what live performances are all about. This is what I want to see.

[SKOA Presents] Some Kind of Mixtape: July 2012

The heat is ON! Many parts of the US are reaching record breaking temperatures resulting in all sorts of things melting that shouldn't (and obvs many that should). From the sounds of Some Kind of Mixtape: July we were all on the same page and provided you all with some tracks that are perfect for laying around to while beads of sweat collect on your forehead. So sit back, relax, and press play on this month's mix. As always, you can learn more about each track below. Make sure you add us on 8tracks and if you have mixtaps you think we should check out, hit us up on Twitter or Facebook and let us know!

Stay cool (literally)!

kibbe, rocko, shey & adrian

Some Kind Of Mixtape - July from skoablog on 8tracks.

Divine Fits - "Would That Not Be Nice"
Sometimes I feel bad for side projects featuring musicians from multiple different bands because you KNOW that everyone is going to be analyzing every last note to see who has the most influence. Such is the case with indie super(?) group Divine Fits - which consists of Britt Daniel (Spoon), Dan Boeckner (Wolf Parade) and Sam Brown (New Bomb Turks). Admittedly, I fell for "Would That Not Be Nice" for it's obvious Spoon-esque sounds, but I've found the other tracks from the upcoming album titled A Thing Called Divine Fits to tickle my fancy in non-Spoon-loving ways as well. Make sure you pick up the "My Love Is Real" vinyl which dropped this past week and be on the lookout for the full length coming up on August 28th.  - kibbe

Tame Impala - "Apocalypse Dreams"

I've said it multiple times. Tame Impala rules all. These Aussie psych rockers amazed me with their 2010 debut album Innerspeaker. Now the boys are back to do it again with their sophomore effort, Lonerism. The first single "Apocalypse Dreams" continues right where Innerspeaker left off with it's spacey/dreamy landscape of amazing. With their take on the classic psychedelic rock sound, I don't see Tame Impala going away anytime soon.—Rocko

Carnivals - "Departners"

The atmospheric style of Sheffield producer Carnivals has had me completely addicted since hearing his debut Mavi Kara EP last year, and his latest cut has heightened my addiction to whole new levels. "Departners", the first offering from the soon-to-be-released Humility EP, sees the artist embracing the sounds and influences of India, medling them beautifully into his ambient, sprawling soundscapes. This is the kind of music you can put on late at night and fully lose yourself in, the type of song that treads the line between dreams and reality.—Adrian

Bat for Lashes - "Laura"

Taken from her third album, Haunted Man, Natasha Khan aka Bat for Lashes seems to return to form in her new single "Laura". Cast your mind back to 2009 and I must say I wasn't a great fan of Two Suns and her single "Daniel" (what's with all the first names for song titles?) but with this new single she seems revived. A stripped back sound and the results are stunning and certainly something to be excited about in the coming months. Of the sound she's gone for with the new album she says "I really wanted to strip things back in honour of women like Patti Smith." Can we argue with that? The album is set for release on October 15th but I'm sure we'll see more of it before then.—Shey

Dirty Projectors - "Gun Has No Trigger"

Swing Lo Magellan is on the shortlist for my top albums of the year, and rightly so. Each song the Dirty Projectors delivered on their sixth full-length is perfection, but "Gun Has No Trigger" stood out above the rest. As a whole, the song evokes a strange mood, entering a near-Radiohead level of weird, and it's so damn addicting. The atmospheric instrumentation is fantastic, but it is Dave Longstreth's vocals that stand out. The way he bends his voice, contorting it in amazing ways and hitting the oddest of notes, is what makes this song. It's just so good. I. Can't. Stop. Listening.—Adrian

Two Door Cinema Club - "Sleep Alone"

As Olympic fever sweeps not just the nation but the entire world, it's easy to forget that Two Door Cinema Club have to-date only released one album yet last Friday during the opening ceremony of London 2012, lead Alex Trimble performed alongside rocks biggest names. Pretty big for a band that have not long had their training wheels off. Lead single from their forthcoming sophomore album, Beacon, sees the band doing what they do best. "Sleep Alone" features soaring melodies intricately woven around exquisitely placed guitar hooks resulting in a single you want to play again and again. The single drops on September 3rd, the same day as the album.—Shey

Black Moth Super Rainbow - "Windshield Smasher"
For me, what's always been so nice about Black Moth Super Rainbow has been the music's ability to seemingly float around in my head and get into all of the creative nooks and crannies that I sometime forget exists. "Windshield Smasher" from their upcoming album Cobra Juicy speaks well to that same feeling. For more feel-goodness make sure you take part in their Kickstarter to fund the upcoming album, which is slated for an October 9th release. Even though the kickstarter project is already completely funded, it's hard not to pass up the sweet deals that come with each tier in the funding process. - kibbe

Frank Ocean - "Forrest Gump"

With all the hype surrounding Frank Ocean it's easy to get lost in the sea of Orange he's managed to thrust upon the world. That performance on Jimmy Fallon and the surprise release of his album certainly added fuel to the fire but once you hit play you're left reeling of a man haunted by his own past and one that's wise beyond his years. A stand out from the release for me was "Forrest Gump" being as it's a little different, it's playful in its lyrics and it puts a smile on my face when I hear it. Music that evokes emotion is always going to be a winner.—Shey

Flea - "Pedestal of Infamy"

This. This is just amazing. I knew Flea was a great musician but I had no idea he could create something as beautiful as this track from his recently released EP Helen Burns. If the Chili Peppers were to break up and we'd get continuous album's from John Frusciante and Flea, i'd be completely okay with that. If you disagree, just listen to the awesomeness of this track. It's completely mind-blowing.—Rocko

Flying Lotus feat. Earl Sweatshirt & Captain Murphy - "Between Friends"

Adult Swim's Singles Program has delivered some definite gems so far, but Flying Lotus' collaborative track with Earl Sweatshirt and Captain Murphy is easily the top contender. FlyLo never ceases to amaze us with his mesmerizing experimental style of instrumentals, and the added spitfire delivery of Earl Sweatshirt blends seamlessly into that. It's the addition of the anonymous emcee Captain Murphy that makes this track so interesting, though, as he comes across as a more intelligent Tyler, The Creator with a smoother lyrical flow. Who is Captain Murphy? Who the fuck cares, because when Flying Lotus' captivating instrumentals, Earl Sweatshirt's smooth flow, and Captain Murphy's intelligent charisma combine, it makes for an amazing listen.—Adrian

John Frusciante - "In Your Eyes"

I wish I could just limit this blurb to "It's John Fuckin Frusciante. Nuff Said." He's the reason most people got into the Red Hot Chili Peppers and is one of the greatest guitarists of all time, and now he's back for the first time since his departure from the Chili Peppers with a new solo EP titled Letur-Lefr. Frusciante is a master of melodics from his production down to his harmonic vocals and his masterful licks. Although he's no longer part of RHCP it's great to see him back in the driver seat creating beautiful artistry. /fanboy—Rocko 

Snowden - "The Beat Comes"
It's been six long years since Austin-based band Snowden dropped their debut full length Anti-Anti and I fell for their catchy post-punk sound with songs like "Black Eyes", "Counterfeit Rules", and "Like Bullets". I had seen bits and pieces over the past few years that frontman Jordan Jeffares had left his hometown of Atlanta, GA and spent some time in New York City before settling down in Austin, TX, but I hadn't heard anything about new music in the near future until a few month ago. To my delight this past month I finally got to lay my ears on the first single from the upcoming sophomore album, No One In Control. "The Beat Comes" is a great avenue for Snowden to travel down since last we heard from the band with it's dark but inspiring undertones. It could have been because my first listen was by way of its outstanding video directed by John Merizdale when it premiered on Stereogum last week, but I still love it either way. No One In Control is slated for a fall 2012 release on Kings of Leon's label Serpents and Snakes. - kibbe