If you, like me, think M.I.A. jumped the world pop shark with the "Born Free" video, try Abjeez, an Iranian pop/ska group based in Sweden fronted by sisters Melody and Safoura Safavi. Their music is political, personal, satirical, funny, catchy and accompanied by great videos (included after the jump!).
After a string of EPs and self-released singles, Brighton's Peggy Sue finally have an LP out!!….. in the UK. Fossils and Other Phantoms will be released in the US in June, but if you're in Europe, you can probably see this soul folk wonderfulness live! Multi-instrumentalist original members Rosa Slade and Katy Young have absolutely gorgeous voices, and their live shows are supposed to be amazing. If you've never heard Peggy Sue (formerly Peggy Sue and the Pirates), start off with Body Parts & First Aid (two EPs put together on one record).
More news after the jump!
I was lucky enough to attend a SXSW screening of Blip Festival: Reformat the Planet, a documentary about chiptunes, an underground music form that uses hardware from old video game consoles, like classic Nintendo Game Boys and NESes, to create new, original music. Most of this music bears little resemblance to 8-bit video game music (except, of course, for the sound quality); it's more like bright, happy amped-up techno, the kind of music that makes you feel like you're going on an adventure. Reformat the Planet tracks the creation of Blip Festival, a four-day chiptune extravaganza that happens in Brooklyn and features artists from all around the world. The movie is just 82 minutes, but is packed with great live footage, interviews and insights into the chiptune-making process.