Fortuna Pop Records News

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A couple of gigs coming up for you, the first being a cracking bill featuring the ever excellent Gold Sounds, Fireworks Night (one of the highlights of last year’s End Of The Road festival for me), and our own very wonderful My Sad Captains at Hoxton Bar & Kitchen on Monday. In recognition of the fact that it’s a Monday, and also because we want a big posse to ward off the Nathan Barley-types, we’re practically giving the tickets away at £3 a pop, although only to you, because you’re our very special friend. Follow the secret link below for what’s sure to be a cockle-warming mid-winter show of immense proportions…

Then, next Friday, on the 22nd of February, we’ve our regular Beat Hotel night at the Buffalo Bar, this month with a line-up of bands that are all out of the ordinary, but each different in their own way, from the analogue ensemble of The Keyboard Choir, to the jerky englishpopness of Champion Kickboxer, to the hypnotic lullabies of Hong Kong In The 60s. Perhaps the band we’re most excited about seeing though is the one bottom of the bill, as one of our favourite bands, The Leaf Library, make a return to live performance after a long search for a new stick-wielder. Tickets here…

Now for some record news.

If you’ve not bought the Club 8 album yet we’ve rounded up some of the great reviews it’s had and pasted them below in one final effort to entice you. It’s a sure-fire bet for any lover of Swedish pop music, so go get it, now.

Our next album release will be from a band new to the label who we’re very excited about, firstly because they’re an indie-bluegrass band and we hate being called narrow-minded, and secondly because amongst their members they feature Mr Darren Hayman of Hefner-fame and Mr Dave Tattersall of The Wave Pictures, both of whom contribute songs to go alongside Townes Van Zandt and Mountain Goats covers, with the odd trad number thrown in for good measure. It really is a great album and although it’s all performed in a bluegrass stylee there’s plenty here for any fan of Darren or The Wave Pictures to love, and more besides. They’re called Hayman, Watkins, Trout & Lee and it’s available now for if you would like to order a copy, or a Club 8 album, go to the bottom of this e-mail for details of how to do so.

Finally, there’s a great radio show in Dublin on Dublin City FM called Songs To Learn And Sing, and Paul the DJ has asked me to spread the word about a radio documentary he’s produced about the legendary band Five Go Down To The Sea (Creation records, Setanta records etc.). If you want to give it a listen it’s available to podcast from

Hasta luego,

El Presidente


My Sad Captains + Fireworks Night + Gold Sounds

Monday 18th February 8pm
Hoxton Square Bar & Kitchen
2- 4 Hoxton Square
N1 6NU

Nearest tube : Old Street
Tel : 020 7613 0709

Advance: £5 from We Got Tickets/Door: £6

London-based quintet My Sad Captains take the country-tinged American sounds of Sparklehorse and Wilco and lend them a sparkling, harmony-rich pop edge, touched with occasional fiery noise outbursts. Named after a poem by Thom Gunn, My Sad Captains were picked by The Fly magazine as ones to watch without releasing a note and their debut single “Bad Decisions” on Fortuna POP! garnered acclaim from Uncut, the NME and Drowned In Sound; radio support from Steve Lamacq, Huw Stephens and Gideon Coe; and its lilo-tastic video featured on MTV2. Already live favourites on the London gig circuit they’ve sung their hearts out across town with the likes of Tilly and the Wall, Loney Dear, Get Cape Wear Cape Fly, Rumblestrips and The Broken Family Band and stolen the show at this years End of the Road festival. A new single “All Hat And No Plans” will be released on the esteemed White Heat label in March.
“Sparkling indie pop in the vein of Pavement, the Lemonheads or Broken Social Scene, and the kind of music it’s possible to fall deeply in love to with people across the room whose gaze you momentarily caught but will never meet.” (RockFeedback)

Fireworks Night play slow-burning, tragi-folk infused with the drama of Brel, bluegrass and gypsy traditions. They have made two albums, 2003’s ‘It’s A Wide, Wide Sea’ and last year’s ‘As Fools We Are’ and have recently supported Frog Eyes, David Thomas Broughton, Patrick Watson and St. Vincent.
“An assured set of defiantly melancholy hymns informed by the noirish intent of Nick Cave, the bleak minimalism of Tindersticks and shanty-toting auteurs such as Tom Waits and Vivian Stanshall”

With a name that points a less-than-subtle referential finger to their musical heroes Pavement, Gold Sounds play perfectly crafted classic pop songs that also nod a head to prime-period REM, with the odd Alisdair Roberts folk styling here and there.
“…when these four studious young believers get their heads down and give us a tune as delightful as ‘Prints’ – think David Gedge duetting with the Divine Comedy – they’re a joy to behold…” Drowned In Sound


The Keyboard Choir + Champion Kickboxer + Hong Kong In The 60s + The Leaf Library

plus Fortuna POP! DJs playing indiepop, punk, 60s psych and northern soul

Friday 22nd February 8pm til late
Buffalo Bar, 259 Upper Street, London N1 1RU
Nearest tube : Highbury & Islington
Tel : 020 7359 6191
E-mail :

Advance: £5 from We Got Tickets/Door: £6

The six-strong Keyboard Choir formed in Oxford during winter 2004 in an attempt to create live music with the turbulence and dynamics of ‘traditional’ ensemble performance using purely electronic sound sources – keys, synths, drum machines, samplers, fx boxes, laptops. Taking their cue from a myriad of influence including, but not limited to, Godspeed You Black Emperor, The BBC Radiophonics Workshop, Slowdive, Vangelis and The Chemical Brothers, The Keyboard Choir are a unique proposition even before you factor in the robots made from tin foil and cardboard boxes that accompany their live shows. Gigs to date have included a Coldcut Support and a slot at Truck festival, while they recently released their debut album on Brainlove records.
“Live, Keyboard Choir are a real spectacle. Cues are introduced by way of a conductor, samples drift in and out of the ether, and then there are those robots who lazily dance around like Castrol GTX was like some kind of cyborg Ketamine… ” (MusicOMH)

From Sheffield, Champion Kickboxer are signed to the ultra-hip Thee SPC label who first brought us The Long Blondes not so long ago. Jerky art-rock rhythms combine with classic English songwriting to create something akin to a Robyn Hitchcock-fronted Wire or Blur with a Beefheartian maverick edge. They’ve recently released a new EP called “Candlepower”.
“Champion Kickboxer sound like no band you ever heard. Eccentric, English, full of character,as beautifully unique as Pulp or Cardiacs or XTC in their very own way.” (Organ)

Taking their cue from old Oriental pop, classic AM radio and the baroque melancholy of groups like Blonde Redhead and Broadcast. The band play hypnotic lullabies through a filter of cheap keyboards and guitars.
“A lovely understated and quite beautiful sound” 
(Sean O’Hagan – High Llamas)

The Leaf Library is Matt Ashton (guitar and vocals), Kate Gibson (vocals and keyboards), Jona (bass), Ben Smith (guitar and button-pushing), plus a brand new drummer. Matt used to play guitar in Saloon who released three albums and a whole heap of 7″s before they split in 2004. Think Yo La Tengo, Appliance, Electrelane, Broadcast, Lali Puna and Stereolab, or a big long low leafy drone that’s got some nice clever words sung over the top of it. Come along and welcome them back.


We’ve had some great reviews for the Club 8 album we released way in in, oooh, January, so we thought we’d round them all up for you in an effort to persuade you that you really are missing out if you’ve not bought this album yet. C’mon, all the other kids are laughing at you ‘cos you’ve not got it! Ordering details at the bottom of this mail.

“Exquisite, perfect creamy dreamy pop, classic sunny Swedish minimal pop. Karolina Komstedt’s voice is perfect, perfectly beautiful, she has the ability to gently melt just about everything with her perfect perfect beautiful voice. Classic sensual creamy sunny breezy indie pop that just really is perfect. Classic beguiling St. Etienne, Cardigans, Whipped Cream style indie pop and a just right in every way mix of melancholia and sunshine – gloriously good. This is just perfect simple clever dreamy indie pop. Beautiful, you really need to go find it.” (Organ)

“Focused on the melancholy pop that is their forte, Karolina Komstedt’s breathy vocals are very much to the fore on these ravishingly pretty melodies. These songs about love and the fleeting nature of existence pack an emotional punch. (**** Q)
“it throbs to the pulse of deliciously bittersweet guitar melodies, a lifelong passion for The Smiths and even a shaking of Latin percussion” (**** Metro)

“Hushed vocals soar dreamlike through the glacial-pop of Club 8’s oeuvre; shoe gazing, 60’s girl bands and a penchant for Belle & Sebastian worshipping Rule the waves, a perfect partner to the sheer wonder of Asobi Seksu!” (SubbaCultcha)

“And no wonder he couldn’t stop dreaming, if he was listening to this album. After a four-year absence, Sweden’s Club 8 provide the dreamiest dreampop imaginable, with Karolina Komstedt’s feather-light voice placed delicately over Johan Angergard’s gently evolving backing tracks.” (4 Stars, The Sunday Times)

“The kind of sweet Swedish pop that makes references to the Concretes, Camara Obscura and Belle and Sebastian kinda unavoidable, and their sixth album is assured,classy and, in Whatever You Want and When I Come Around, home to at least two choruses that hit you like a sunbeam. Delicious.” (Buzz)

“A gorgeous offering from Swedish duo Club 8… cool and melodic ditties, ranging from classy 60s pop ballads to the more upbeat slices of pop. File under: Yummy.” (AllGigs)

“Club 8 are on sparkling form here, seemingly having absorbed a little bit of extra pop-nous, a la Peter, Bjorn And John while the sugary finish of Karolina’s vocals, brings to mind Saint Etienne chanteuse Sarah Cracknell or Dubstar at their most angelic. This is comedown music imbued strangely with the ghostly groove of the swinging Sixties. Themes of loss and death are beautifully rendered, as melancholic as the pale winter sunlight.” (NARC)

“An absolute bundle of Scandinavian indie-pop brilliance from start to finish… the vocals are beautiful from Karolina Komstedt, weaving a dreamy pop way around the instrumentation with nods to bands like The Concretes, St Etienne, Joy Zipper and Husky Rescue as reference points. I’m so glad that i’ve been blessed with this album, it’s really wet my appetite to hear more. (The Beat Surrender)

“Six albums in and the Swedes of Club 8 are showing no signs of dipping in quality. The Boy Who Couldn’t Stop Dreaming is another album of delightful female fronted indie pop… listen carefully and you’ll see it’s a gem.” (Russell’s Reviews)

“They do this well, the Swedes. Clean guitars, vocals like water over ice, frictionless.” (Plan B)

“An album that sounds like warm breath steaming up frosty windows, fairy lights reflected in faraway eyes, and smiles going distant and dreamy whilst ice cubes melt into vanilla vodka.“ (Kitten Painting)

“The duo of Karolina Komstedt and Johan Angergård have seemingly given us the Summer album of the year. Err…six months too early. Fey, filigree pop music of the highest caliber… the finest 60s-influenced, acoustic-led pop south of the arctic circle… exquisitely delicate and melodically seductive.“ (BBC Music)

“Club 8 hark back to the glory days of C86 indie-pop: ‘The Boy Who Couldn’t Stop Dreaming’ recalls the summery guitars of Sarah Records and Simon and Garfunkle harmonies. Jaunty beats, cheerful strumming and a dose of Neil Young’s more pastoral side: a derivative mixture, yet one that will fill the gap until the next Belle and Sebastian release.” (Is This Music?)

*** NEW SOUNDS ***

Some brand spanking new records for you to order…

“The everything-but-the-kitchen-sink arrangements of Arcade Fire, the warped melancholy of Pavement and the fuzz-pop heart of Teenage Fanclub” (Subba-Cultcha)
“Like The Magic Numbers going toe to toe with Wilco in a meadow full of summer flowers.” (The Beat Surrender)
” Dangerously addictive… kiss any other soundtracks to your summer goodbye… all the best bits of Sparklehorse, Pavement and Yo La Tengo” (RockFeedBack)
“A lushly laden gem of classically appreciated soft-centred country pop currency, packed to the rafters with honey-crusted tip-toeing melodies… In a word – perfect.” (Losing Today)
“A warm, orange, summer evening, of song; it is warm, hazy and relaxed, with a hint of American alt folk. It is utterly charming in its effortless simplicity.” (Neon Buzz)

“The finest baritone warble in indie rock, unfailingly catchy pop tunes and perfectly
pitched melancholy ballads… the Ladybug Transistor’s best work equals the best pop
music made at any time in the past 50 years.” (All Music Guide)
“Six albums in, Can’t Wait Another Day develops the Ladybug’s
earlier indiepop and psychedelic sounds towards a sound which is more
classic baroque pop, with a glorious melancholic lilt and the sort of
impressive crooning you thought was lost decades ago… it strengthens
their reputation as purveyors of intricately arranged and stately pop songs.
“Forty minutes of Pop in its most beguilingly classical, sparklingly emotional form.” (Miwsig)
“A surprisingly mature collection, all playful guitar lines and smooth saxophones. Gary Olson’s baritone is worth of the late Lee Hazlewood while other tracks find the middle ground between Burt Bacharach and Belle and Sebastian” (Uncut)
“Brooklyn’s The Ladybug Transistor have been playing their elegant, lovelorn pop since 1995. Their latest sees strings and brass adding lushness to songs of heartache. File next to Belle & Sebastian, The Magnetic Fields and The Go-Betweens”(Q)
“Newcomers will enjoy Gary Olson rounding his vowels like an indie pop Scott Walker, and hearing organs and warm guitars roll by like 1960s beauties. Long-term fans will envelop themselves happily in the album’s soft loveliness” (The Guardian)

“A heady brew of T-Rex swagger, Super Fury’s oddness and the jubilant pop-mindedness of The Zutons at their sweetest… perfect for those missing a little ram-a-lama-ding-dong in their lives.” (Subba-cultcha)
“The Loves are part Monkees and part Os Mutantes but for ‘One-Two-Three’ they’re T-Rex. It’s a stupid/genius gram rock stomper with girl-group harmonies, an air-punching chorus and a sleezy groove” (SoundsXP)
“The results are fantastic… One-Two-Three rolls in pop heaven with irresistible call and response vocals and chugging guitars” (Music OMH)
“One has to wonder why the likes of The Loves are not huge popstars… a glam rock inspired floor stomper complete with the catchiest chorus this side of planet Mars. If T-Rex were on the C86 tape this is what they would have sounded like. Buy!” (Indie-mp3)
“Mixing T Rex and Johnny B Goode, the Loves have cooked up the feel good song of the year. A chorus so good that you’ll be singing before you’ve even heard the song” (Fat and Confused)
“There’s nothing in the entire spectrum of medical science that’ll get this one out of your head… a football-chant simple glam-rock stomper so catchy it makes Rhianna’s ‘Umbrella’ sound like free jazz performed on out-of-tune instruments by tone-deaf chimpanzees.” (Pennyblack)
“A delirious dandy of a ditty that manages to shoehorn nods aplenty to Suzi Q, the Rubettes and most curiously the Beach Boys in surf mode and ‘end of the century‘ era Ramones (I kid you not) while wiring into the mutant matrix some nifty touches of 50’s bubblegum pop tendered with the essence of Spector while hoodwinking a spot of acutely faux Bolan-esque boogie while playfully cross fusing Glitters ’I love you love me’ with the Bay City Rollers ’bye bye baby’. Buy on sight.” (Losing Today)
“A piece of fine bubblegum pop.” (Russell’s Reviews)


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