Wednesday, December 23, 2009


Good news for people who love great news, Christmas has come early in the form of another brand new track from everyone's favorite pop mystery, Monarchy. Saving the earth from bland pop music one hot jam at a time, the fly-by-night London duo are back with one of their best tracks yet in "The Phoenix Alive". It sounds kind of exactly like "Here Comes The Rain Again" without actually sounding like it at all, and we're pretty into that.

MP3: "The Phoenix Alive" (Demo) - Monarchy [expired]

Tuesday, December 22, 2009


It's been a bit quiet 'round our way as of late, but we've been down in DC and busy raging through the blizzard, drinking the house dry while the rest of the eastern seaboard attempts to dig themselves out of the arctic smackdown that hit the mid-atlantic region this past weekend. But we're back now, and in a big way with the first remix from Marina & The Diamonds' upcoming single release for "Hollywood", courtesy of UK electro types Fenech-Soler. We don't know much about them or even how to properly pronounce their name, but they sure do know their way around a remix and do it up big on this one, dropping a metric ton of buzzsaw synths all over this shit and blowing up the brilliant Marina original to epic proportions. 'Tis the season to let loose, so throw this on the stereo and get your rageface on; Fenech-Soler are coming to town.

MP3: "Hollywood" (Fenech-Soler Remix) - Marina & The Diamonds [exclusive]

Wednesday, December 16, 2009


Having killed it on official Neon Gold remixes for The Sound of Arrows and Mille, London's Fear of Tigers is quickly becoming one of our favorite new electronic talents around, and now he's bringing forth more of the same hard-hitting, euphoric electro we've come to love him for on his debut album, Cossus Snufsigalonica.

Heavy on the samples and showcasing more of the next-level synth work that's become his trademark, the Tokyo-born, London-bred producer turns in a pretty stunning compilation of tracks on Cossus. Tracks like "I Can Make The Pain Disappear" and "What Did I Do?" fuck you up with big samples - especially that Robin Thicke one in "Disappear" - and even bigger synths, while instrumentals like "Study Hard Drugs School" showcase his knack for expressive electronic soundscapes and hooky pop melodies. Best of all, he's giving the whole album away for free, so enjoy a taster below or head over to Discodust where you can download the album from the free host of your choice. We're definitely trying to work with this dude in the future and will be unveiling his massive "Crysteena" remix next month, so keep an eye on this space if you like what you hear below.

MP3: "I Can Make The Pain Disappear" - Fear of Tigers


We first posted the amazing Bag Raiders triumph "Shooting Stars" last autumn, and twelve months on it remains one of our favorite tracks of the past few years. This week our new friends over at Handsome Clothing Co. turned us onto a blissed-out cover of the song from ethereal North Carolina dreamweaver Hidden Cat, and we must say, it's mighty brilliant. If we bought into the whole "chillwave" thing we'd probably label it as such, but instead we'll just give it our seal of approval and urge you to download it below.

MP3: "Shooting Stars" - Hidden Cat

Monday, December 14, 2009


We've had a pretty busy release schedule in 2009 putting out some of our favorite artists around, and after a little break this December we're ready to get back in the game and go twice as hard in 2010. We're not only talking new singles from some of the hottest new talents around (Monarchy, Penguin Prison, Yes Giantess, et. al), but also EPs and longplayers. Yeah, shit's about to get really real all over again. To kick it all off we've got a white-hot 12" release from one of the freshest new faces on the electronic scene, the unstoppable electro force that is Sweden's brilliant Mille.

We first featured Mille back in September with the demo version of "Crysteena", and now we're back with the real deal, all polished up with a slick mastering job and a few tweaks to make it even more amazing then it already was. For the uninitiated, "Crysteena" is one of the biggest tracks you'll hear all year, with a glorious synth lead in place of a vocal that makes for one of the most expressive and emotive synthetic compositions we've ever heard. Already championed by DJs the world over including the likes of Starsmith and Russ Chimes, Mille is quickly making a name for himself in the international electro scene and this here is his official coming-out party. Following on the heels of our first-ever 12" release with The Sound of Arrows last September, the Crysteena 12" not only boasts the immense original, but new track "Stargazers" and some killer remixes courtesy of Fear of Tigers, Edwin van Cleef and Justin Faust. Below is the shiny new version of "Crysteena" in it's all it's extended glory, as well as a streamlined radio edit for the ADD generation.

MP3: "Crysteena" (12" Version) - Mille [exclusive]
MP3: "Crysteena" (Radio Edit) - Mille [exclusive]

As per usual, the 12" will be available from the Neon Gold Shop for our stateside friends and exlcusively from Puregroove for our international shoppers. The package is out January 11th featuring handsome cover artwork from Sweden's DW Design, but is available for preorder now. We've also got a lovely little Christmas sale currently underway at the Neon Gold Shop, with 25% off selected items in our back catalogue. Sale ends after Christmas though so act fast. And finally, we're currently developing a line of t-shirts for unveiling in early 2010, so get ready to get some Neon Gold merch all up on your body in the new year. Yes mate? Yes. Mate.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009


A few weeks ago, Swedish wunderkind Erik Hassle and his guitarist Viktor Paronitti were just messing about with covers, going through the pop catalog from Abba to La Roux and went on to record that essential cover of Robyn’s "Be Mine" with newly-anointed Brit Award Critics' Choice winner Ellie Goulding. Today we exclusively bring you this absolute gem of a track that’s got more heart and more break in it than we’ve ever heard from him before.

Sam Cooke’s "Nothing Can Ever Change This Love" reflects a whole lot about Hassle’s sound and songwriting: growing up he’d listen to Swedish punk rock and the usual pop, but the soul music of Sam Cooke, Donny Hathaway and Wilson Pickett are what really stuck, and their influence is clear in his emotive, heartfelt delivery. We’ve been waiting to hear this on record since he ended an intimate London live show with it recently, so take a moment, have a listen, and if you feel you need to: go have a little cry, we’re not judging.

MP3: "Nothing Can Change This Love" - Erik Hassle [exclusive]


Although they didn't quite make our list (mainly because they were on it last year), Delphic are rolling into 2010 as one of the most hotly-tipped acts in the UK, having just picked up BBC Sound of 2010 longlist honors and a shortlist nod for the Brit Awards Critics' Choice (beaten out by none other than our very own Ellie Goulding, it's worth noting). The lead single off their upcoming full-length debut Acolyte is the phenomenal "Doubt", a track we've been in love with since we first heard it in demo form nearly 18 months ago. Thus, we're thrilled to give you the opportunity to try your hand at remixing it by offering up the bass stems for you below.

MP3: "Doubt" (Bass Stems) - Delphic ||| WAV: "Doubt" (Bass Stems) - Delphic

The remaining parts of the track have been distributed among a few other blogs and are available from our friends at Big Stereo, Electrorash, Fucking Dance, Hot Biscuits, The Mix Tape, Too Many Sebastians, and Trash Menagerie, so anyone looking to have a go at a remix would do well to hit up those outlets for the remaining pieces of the "Doubt" puzzle. Above we've got the amazing video for your audiovisual pleasure, while anyone in need of something to aspire to in their remixing endeavors would do well to hit up the brilliant Riton re-rub below.

MP3: "Doubt" (Riton Re-Rub) - Delphic

Sunday, December 6, 2009


We love lists more than pretty much anything, so we couldn't be happier that list-making season is upon us once again. The BBC's annual Sound of 2010 is pretty much the king of all lists, so for all intents and purposes we're gonna just take their exact approach as we look forward to next year. So yeah, same criteria - artists can't have had a Top 20 single or album to date, can't be a solo project from an established artist, etc - and all that jazz. Seems like we were a bit too far-sighted with last year's lists, as most of those acts - while still doing quite well for themselves - haven't actually released their debut album yet. So there will be a few repeats on this year's list, and it'll mostly be concerned with bands that will definitely have albums out next year in the UK and will definitely be massive. And away we go...

DRAKE // Not sure if Drake qualifies as I can't find any evidence of whether or not he's charted in the UK yet, but if he's eligible for the list then he's a no-brainer number one. The BBC Sound of... lists aren't exactly reknowned for their attention to hip-hop so I doubt he'll top the actual BBC list, but Kid Cudi repped hard on last year's list and 50 Cent locked down the #1 spot back in 2003, and Drake's as deserving (if not more) as both of those dudes.

MARINA & THE DIAMONDS + ELLIE GOULDING // Asking us to choose between these two would be like asking a proud parent to choose their favorite child, so we'll let them share this slot and sit nicely alongside one another. I don't think anyone doubts the huge year these two have ahead of them, and with immense lead singles planned for early next year followed shortly thereafter by massive debut albums, we can pretty much tell you with absolute certainty that they're not gonna dissapoint. Ellie's about as Sound of 2010 as you could possibly get, while Marina's more of a timeless pop star operating outside the boundaries of what's currently "in", but we're confident both will be sitting pretty as two of the most successful breakthrough artists of 2010 this time next year. Love our babygirls.

HURTS // For all we know Hurts only have one song and a cool video, but god damn that one song is MASSIVE. Plus, given the amount of money Sony threw at them we're assuming they've got to have a couple more big guns waiting in the wings, and they've just got their whole aesthetic nailed so masterfully that we can't see them not going supernova next year. For now, it's all about "Wonderful Life" though, out next January with an amazing remix package and that aforementioned flawless video. Such a hit.

SKY FERREIRA // I don't think we've even heard a proper track from her yet, but with the biggest UK record deal of 2009 (don't quote me on that), her epic "it girl" status, some serious pipes and production credits on her forthcoming debut album including Aeroplane, Bloodshy & Avant and Paul Epworth, she's pretty much a shoo-in for superstardom next year.

PENGUIN PRISON // We doubt the man they call Penguin Prison will make the BBC list, but if people knew just how unreal his debut album is shaping up to be he'd be all over this shit. Seriously, "Funny Thing" and "Animal Animal" are so barely the tip of the iceberg it's not even funny, he's got about a hundred amazing singles up his sleeve and some of the best pop tracks we've heard in ages. Seriously, dude is the best thing to happen to cool pop music in ages.

DAISY DARES YOU // Yet another girl primed for big things next year, we've got a few tracks from her that suggest she'll be every bit as big as the pop ladies of 2009 who paved the way for this year's crop of talented females. Mainly it's all about "Number One Enemy", which is just such a massive summertime pop smash it's a little bit ridiculous. Sky Ferreira's main competition for Lolita of 2010 honors, Daisy's gonna be all over the place next year.

STARSMITH // Surprise! He's a solo artist too. Literally everything Starsmith's touched thus far has turned to gold, and he's pretty much single-handedly (slight exaggeration) crafted that futuristic pop sound that has defined the last twelve months and will likely continue to reign surpreme in 2010, so we have no reason to suspect he's not going to continue killing it in the months to come. Few people have heard his actual solo material, but trust us, it's kind of amazing.

THEOPHILUS LONDON // Dude is just the biggest superstar we've ever seen on the small stage, he's just oozing swagger and star power, and even if he doesn't quite have the original material to back it up just yet, we really can't see him not being HUGE next year.

THE SOUND OF ARROWS // Quickly becoming our favorite band in the world, the Sound of Arrows can quite literally do it all. Music videos, production, songwriting, remixes, art direction... literally everything. I don't really know where they fit in with the current music scene, but I don't really care, they're just operating on a whole different level than pretty much anyone else at the moment.

OWL CITY // I mean, if this dude can get to #1 out of nowhere with a track like "Fireflies" in the US, I can barely fathom the kind of damage he could do on the UK charts. "Fireflies" is out in February in the UK and it's gonna be kind of a big deal.

ERIK HASSLE // We know things haven't really gotten off to the most promising start for our beloved Swede, but if Island play their cards right Erik could really go massive next year. If they can just stop trying to make him into the pop star he's not and just embrace his weird Napoleon-Dynamite-gone-pop vibe and indie charm I feel like he could really surprise a lot of people next year. And seriously, is there a single person who can honestly tell us "Hurtful" doesn't sound like an international number one?

LOCAL NATIVES // It's about time proper bands made a comeback and Local Natives are just operating on a whole different playing field from everyone else. Their album's already out and shit (and it's one of the year's absolute finest), but if this isn't the best new band of 2009/2010 we don't know who is.

LUNAR YOUTH // Good looking dudes who know how to play their instruments writing stadium-sized anthems. "Venus In Blue Jeans" is stupidly big. They're going to be quite popular indeed.

FREELANCE WHALES // Not a chance in hell these guys make the BBC list and they're still unsigned for the UK, but they've already got one of the year's (this year or next, we'd reckon) best albums under their belt and the best indie label in America on their team (what up Frenchkiss?), so why the hell shouldn't they be big next year? All these lists have to have a token folk-ish act anyway, might as well be the best one around.


I Blame Coco will probably be pretty massive too but we ran out of space for her. Sorry Coco.

UPDATE: BBC's longlist has just gone up HERE. Sounds about right to us.

Thursday, December 3, 2009


So these guys took us completely off guard the first time we heard them, hitting us hard with one of THE most amazing tracks of the year. Offering up lush instrumental soundscapes and torn heartstrings, The Middle East combine straight up folk-rock with more ambient flourishes. Hailing from Australia and without a synth in sight (go figure), they’d split up a while before their first EP, The Recordings Of The Middle East came out, but Thank. The. Lord. they put their differences aside and brought us this incredible collection of tracks.

Full of ethereal vocals, sparse guitars and breathtaking narratives, these are fragile lullabies that make you want to fall in love, fall out, and then do it all over again. "Blood" is the most incredible, reminiscent of a more whimsical Arcade Fire it swells with xylophones and whistles, building up into a beautiful midpoint crescendo right at the heart of it. The band’s intense dynamics are right at the core of their luscious sound, and they’ve absolutely made it into our favorite new bands of the year. Heartstrings, get ready to be torn.

MP3: "Blood" - Middle East


We've been off the map this week, what with being over in London for the big Ellie Goulding debut we put on at Cargo on Tuesday, but we just had to address the flawless new Marina & The Diamonds video. How amazing is this?! Really amazing.