An encapsulation of the last month, the Monolith Cocktail team (Dominic Valvona, Matt Oliver, Brian ‘Bordello’ Shea and Graham Domain) chose some of the choicest and favourite tracks from February. It may have been the shortest of months, yet we’ve probably put together our largest playlist in ages: all good signs that despite everything, from Covid to the Russian invasion of the Ukraine, artists, bands everywhere are continuing to create.

65 tracks, over 4 hours of music, February’s edition can be found below:

That exhaustive track list in full:::

Animal Collective ‘Walker’
Modern Nature ‘Performance’
Gabrielle Ornate ‘Spirit Of The Times’
The Conspiracy ‘Red Bird’
Cubbiebear/Seez Mics ‘All Friended Up’
Dubbledge/Chemo ‘Itchy Itchy’
Dirty Dike ‘Bucket Kicker’
Future Kult ‘Beasts With No Name’
Lunch Money Life ‘Jimmy J Sunset’
Ben Corrigan/Hannah Peel ‘Unbox’
Uncommon Nasa ‘Epiphany’
War Women Of Kosovo ‘War Is Very Hard’
Ben Corrigan/Douglas Dare ‘Ministry 101’
Sven Helbig ‘Repetition (Ft. Surachai)’
Ayver ‘Reconciliacion Con La Vida’
Lucidvox ‘Swarm’
Provincials ‘Planetary Stand-Off’
Wovenhand ‘Acacia’
Aesop Rock ‘Kodokushi (Blockhead Remix)’
Junglepussy ‘Critiqua’
Tanya Morgan/Brickbeats ‘No Tricks (Chris Crack) Remix’
Buckwild ‘Savage Mons (Ft. Daniel Son, Lord Jah-Monte Ogbon & Eto) Remix’
Che Noir ‘Praises’
Koma Saxo w/Sofia Jernberg ‘Croydon Koma’
Medicine Singers/Yontan Gat/Jamie Branch ‘Sanctuary’
Black Josh/Milkavelli/Lee Scott ‘Die To This’
Funky DL ‘I Can Never Tell (Ft. Stee Moglie)’
Mopes ‘Home Is Like A Tough Leather Jacket’
ANY Given TWOSDAY ‘Hot Sauce (Ft. Sum)’
Split Prophets/Res One/Bil Next/Upfront Mc/0079 ‘Bet Fred’
Nelson Dialect/Mr. Slipz/Vitamin G/Verbz ‘Oxford Scholars’
Immi Larusso/Morriarchi ‘Inland’
Homeboy Sandman ‘Keep That Same Energy’
Wax Tailor/Mick Jenkins ‘No More Magical’
Ilmiliekki Quartet ‘Sgr A*’
Your Old Droog/The God Fahim ‘War Of Millionz’
Ramson Badbonez/Jehst ‘Alpha’
Ghosts Of Torrez ‘The Wailing’
Pom Poko ‘Time’
Daisy Glaze ‘Statues Of Villians’
Orange Crate Art ‘Wendy Underway’
Seigo Aoyama ‘Overture/Loop’
Duncan Park ‘Rivers Are A Place Of Power’
Drug Couple ‘Linda’s Tripp’
Ebi Soda/Yazz Ahmed ‘Chandler’
Brian Bordello ‘Yes, I Am The New Nick Drake’
Psychedelic Porn Crumpets ‘Bubblegum Infinity’
Steve Gunn ‘Protection (Ft. Mdou Moctar)’
Jane Inc. ‘Contortionists’
Black Flower ‘Morning in The Jungle (Ft. Meskerem Mees)’
Jo Schornikow ‘Visions’
The Goa Express ‘Everybody In The UK’
Pintandwefall ‘Aihai’
Thomas Dollbaum ‘God’s Country’
Crystal Eyes ‘Don’t Turn Around’
Glue ‘Red Pants’
Super Hit ‘New Day’
Legless Trials ‘Junior Sales Club Of America’
Monoscopes ‘The Edge Of The Day’
Alabaster DePlume ‘Don’t Forget You’re Precious’
Orlando Weeks ‘High Kicking’
Carl Schilde ‘The Master Tape’
Bank Myna ‘Los Ojos de un Cielo sin Luz’
Park Jiha ‘Sunrise: A Song Of Two Humans’
Simon McCorry ‘Interstices’


ALBUM REVIEW/Graham Domain

Carl Schilde ‘Europop’
(Fun In The Church) 4th February 2022

The album title is very misleading – suggesting perhaps, an album of Eurovision synth pop! This may lead to a number of people ignoring this great record! In reality, the title refers to Carl Schilde’s country of origin, being born and raised in West Berlin, Germany in the 1980s but now living in Toronto, Canada. Involved in other musical ventures, this is his debut solo album and very good it is!

The first song ‘Top 40’ sets out the sound of the record, a mixture of sublime 70s soft rock and southern soul augmented by analogue synths and keyboards. The vocals sounding most like Lambchop’s Kurt Wagner (albeit in a higher register). The first song features Chris Isaak-like tremolo guitar licks adding to the laid-back vibe of the music.

By song number 2, ‘John Stamos’, we touch on a theme of the record, the struggle of the unknown artist to be heard, with Carl ‘trying to find my place in the world where everything has been done before.’ The theme continues into the third song Road-worn, with musicians soon giving up their dream of musical success to get a proper job – but still keeping hold of their road-worn instruments, just in case! Another song ‘Phase’ details the delight of the unknown artist to receive a mention, a review or even an acknowledgment of their existence, either physically in a magazine or in an internet blog! Such encouragement can mean a lot to the individual and spur them on!

Meanwhile, the song ‘The Master Tape’ begins with soothing piano arpeggios and acoustic guitar, but soon takes on an air of sad resignation as self-doubt creeps in (and a recording session ends in tears) with Carl singing ‘It’s impossible, I know, to recapture a feeling … it’s impossible, like trying to remember a dream … let’s break up the band … I keep breaking up the band’

Elsewhere, In the song ‘Soft Dads’ we get wry lyrics reminiscent of Bill Callahan (Smog) ‘remember when the 80’s still felt like the 70s’ … ‘when shit gets real, I’ll be the first to fall’. The lovely laid-back tunes continue throughout, at times sounding not unlike Sam Dee’s 1973 album The Show Must Go On while at other times touching on a kind of Stuart Staples or Tindersticks vibe.

There is sublime accompaniment throughout by the talented James Yates on drums, while Laura Gladwell provides excellent girl group harmonies, most notably on the wonderful instrumental ‘Landline Pt 2’ where she sounds like a mermaid sighing in the ocean or perhaps a siren singing a ship and its crew to their doom!

The final song ‘Credits’ sees the singer and his lover enjoying the simple things in life, having the same values, staying for the credits at the end of a film, not caring about money, not being materialistic. Lovely arpeggiated keyboards come in towards the end of the song lifting the music up into a revered state, like a shift in consciousness. It ends with the sound of wind chimes blowing in the wind! All cares gone, for now. The full moon lighting up the night bringing a sudden clarity of thought.

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