Tuning Into the Shifting Sands

shifting sands

New Zealand record label Fishrider Records has ably picked up the baton from Flying Nun in recent years. A quick look at their track record and you see albums from the Prophet Hens, Males, Trick Mammoth and Death and the Maiden. All informed by their country’s past, but fresh and new sounding as well. Fishrider continues its kiwi streak with the sophomore album from the Shifting Sands.

Cosmic Radio Station is a record that was made by three guys who run a music venue near Dunedin called Chick’s Hotel, so you can assume they know their stuff. And of course they do. Their brand of pop is the fuzzy downtrodden sort. They have a bit of the Straitjacket Fits to their sound and at times they threaten to launch into Bailter Space territory. Both tendencies get the stamp of approval from this blog.  They also have a more whimsical side which is demonstrated on a couple of pretty instrumentals that sound like they could be from David Kilgour‘s bag of tricks. And of course after a quick  glance at the liner notes I see Mr. Kilgour is lending a hand and some shimmering guitar licks to the title track and Coming Back, one the album’s standouts. Part past, part future, the Shifting Sands aim hits the right cosmic spot.

Shifting Sands’ Cosmic Radio Station is out now on Fishrider in New Zealand, Occultation in the UK.

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