QUINCE RECORDS.

At a time when many labels are slowing their release schedules, Quince Records of Japan are thriving. Over the past several years the label has become an international destination for indiepop, indie rock, shoegaze, and, yes, Scandinavian pop.


Distribution for Quince Records in North America (and, to some extent, beyond) is coordinated by Radio Khartoum. If you are a shop looking to purhase wholesale quantities, please click here for a list of our wholesale distributors.

THE APHRODISIACS: In the Name of the Father

Quince Records (Japan)
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Scottish experimental trio have been around since 2002 when they reportedly sounded like Mogwai with a Casio keyboard thrown in for good measure... Since then, the band released the mini album “This Is A Campaign,” the title track of which landed in John Peel’s 2002 festive fifty and which landed the band a Peel Session to boot. “In the Name of the Father” is The Aphrodisiacs’ first full-length album and features 6 remastered tracks from the mini-album plus 6 brand new tracks recorded in 2006. “The Scottish trio use soothing vocals to lure you into their dark and eerie electro rock world where tense guitars suddenly explode over insistent clipped beats, and it’s all frighteningly catchy and incredibly good. New Order, Depeche Mode and The Cure references abound on the more upbeat tracks, the slower efforts warmly reminiscent of Death Cab For Cutie, making This is a Campaign a sparse and utterly beguiling slice of disco music for the quietly deranged.” (Camilla Pia)

01. In the name of the father

02. Nothing or something

03. 21st century love

04. St. Ann

05. Salvation

06. The covenant

07. Backbone of society

08. Against the grain

09. If u want me

10. The hour is late but please consider

11. Help us do enough

12. 15 pillars of despair

ARIEL KILL HIM: Named After You

Quince Records (Japan)
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“Named After You” is the first new full-length album by Ariel Kill Him (aka David Lehnberg of Gävle, Sweden) since 2003’s successful “In The Pyramid” (10,000 copies sold in the US, Japan and Europe). Although more electronic than AKH’s three previous albums, “Named After You” feels more organic; an effect which Lehnberg achieved by keeping his arrangements stripped down and spontaneous. The Quince release features two bonus tracks, “It’s Christmas” and “With Celesta.” Lehnberg was the singer for Lelah (3 albums) and currently sings and writes songs with the band Ikaros (1 album so far). For fans of Mum, Sagor & Swing, Mew, Jeniferever, Stina Nordenstam and The Gloria Record.

01. Vivid and Alive

02. Technical Put Down

03. Last Blast First

04. The Half of You is Me

05. Pulse B

06. The Lystra Set

07. Tape

08. Untitled Ache in a closed Casket

09. The White Cut

10. Vinaya and the Cracks

11. Altus

12. Feed the Sharks

13. It's Christmas *

14. With Celesta *

THE BROTHERS WITH DIFFERENT MOTHERS: Daffodils and Devils

Quince Records (Japan)
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Imagine a world where The Monkees were played by The Stone Roses. From Manchester, UK, The Brothers With Different Mothers love the vibe of the live stage, at the same time being masters of pulling pop magic out of the studio hat. “Daffodils and Devils” features 12 cuts, five of which appeared briefly on a self-released album which quickly sold out in 2004. Opening track, the brass-driven dancefloor bouncer “Rocktopussy” was released as a single in the UK and gained play on both the BBC and Virgin Radio. It also attracted international attention, gaining radio play as far away as Sweden, and winning fans from around Europe. There are nods to the Stones, Supergrass, CSNY and The Super Furry Animals, but with a sound and attitude that is theirs alone, The Brothers distill their own tasty brew. “Daffodils and Devils” is English pop at its very best, refined yet fresh. You can dance to it, sing along to it, dream to it.

Legendary US producer Kim Fowley says “The Brothers With Different Mothers are wonderful...a 21st century variation on Aztec Camera and Simon & Garfunkel...what they promised, TBWDM deliver...”.

The Poptones website (Alan McGee’s post Creation Records label) made TBWDM their ‘Download of the Week’ recently and said “The Brothers with Different Mothers have taken up the DNA of the psychedelic prime minister of hippie-punk-rock-freakery David Crosby and twisted and turned it into a completely different m*therf*cker that is next to impossible not to love...”.

01. Rocktopussy

02. Friends are Family

03. Friday Morning

04. Dreaming

05. Super Magick Garden

06. Glass of Fresh Air

07. Rainbow

08. Today is the Day

09. The Golden Meadow

10. The Book is Open

11. Stepping Away

12. The Autumn Leaves

KEITH CANISIUS: Waves

Quince Records (Japan)
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last copy!

On this totally self produced album, Keith Canisius (Rumskib) takes his romantic ocean dream pop one step further from his previous album Ferris Wheel Makeout (2008), making it sound even more psychedelic and ambient on one side, yet more poppy, melodic and modern on the other. His great sense for creating atmospheres and melodies together with a sharp structural awareness will take you places you’ve never been before. Yet again Canisius often seeks the explosive moments in his music, but only with an exceptional sense for timing where the listener would least expect it. Listen to the 7 min. dream pop anthem with guest appearance by Isol Misenta (Entre Rios, Alsace Lorraine, Isol/Zypce) and you will know what we’re talking about. Canisius’s music has an emotional depth and musical vision that seems quite unique which allows him to work with a wide musical pallet without limitation and specific genre loyalty.

Anything can happen and will on a Canisius album, often with a classic sounding underline to it, but always pushing the boundaries and seeking those key moments where thoughts loose their sense of basic control.

01. You want to touch my eyes

02. Diving day (feat. Isol Misenta)

03. Ocean ocean

04. We are in reverie

05. Sleepwalking

06. Before we dive

07. Waves

08. I used to live on an island

09. Eternal moments

10. Getting ready for summer (feat. Lærke Askholm)

11. I stayed 25

12. Remember the lake

13. Lucidity

14. Before we say goodnight

DOLOUR: The Years in the Wilderness

Quince Records (Japan)
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The fourth and strongest album to date by Shane Tutmarc’s Dolour, “The Years in the Wilderness” is an ambitious 19-song set split up into two parts: the bombastic, occasionally dark rock of Storm & Stress and the lighter, but moody, jazz-pop of Hell or Highwater. The new album is a departure from Dolour’s previous albums, New Old Friends (2004) and Suburbiac (2002), which were very manicured, production-heavy albums, featuring hundreds of over-dubs performed by Tutmarc himself. On this album, Tutmarc looked to the past to find a fresh way to record; inspired by Miles Davis’s recording sessions, he gathered his favorite musicians and let the songs come together live in a Seattle studio over two very full sessions. Storm & Stress combines the grandeur of Led Zeppelin’s more ambitious tracks with the pop-noise of the Pixies and Nirvana. Hell or Highwater showcases Tutmarc’s love for traditional American songwriting, with nods to gospel, country, Americana, and Tin Pan Alley. Themes of love, spiritual yearning, and self-doubt lend a warmth and depth to this music that is beyond Tutmarc’s years.

01. Wake Up Wake Up

02. Naive

03. An Easy Life

04. I've Made Up My Mind (I'm Never Gonna Make My Mind Up, Again)

05. The Girl I Dream Of

06. Above That

07. Let Go

08. I'm Just No Good for You, Babe

09. To Lay a Ghost

10. Everything Changes When the Sun Dips Out Of Sight

11. Lyin', Hidin', Cryin'

12. Mother/Son

13. The Beginning of Love

14. My Dream Come True

15. I Sold My Guitar to the Devil

16. Summertime is Finally Here

17. Take Me or Leave Me

18. Been In Love for a Long Long Time

19. Evie

DOLOUR: A Matter of Time 2000-2005

Quince Records (Japan)
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Dolour has been a steady buzz on the American pop underground since their first album come out at the turn of the 21st century. This compilation puts 14 of their best songs together for the first time on one CD. Be prepared to start singing-a-long after just one listen. With songs like Cleopatra Eyes, Menage a Trois, Iceland, Cheer Up Baby and Before Tonight’s Big Party - this will be a instant indie classic for any road trip or house party. John Richards (Program Director for KEXP, Seattle) has called leader Shane Tutmarc “one of the best songwriters in Seattle, let alone the rest of the music world”. This collection also offers a few rarities released for the first time. For fans of classic Weezer, Wilco, The Beach Boys, The Flaming Lips and other indie darlings like Belle and Sebastian, Rilo Kiley, and Sufjan Stevens. A must have for lovers of good pop music everywhere.

01. I Smell a Lawsuit

02. Cheer Up Baby

03. CPR

04. Iceland

05. (Why Don't You) Come Around

06. Menage a Trois

07. Next 2 U

08. Suburbiac

09. A Billion Odd People

10. You Can't Make New Old Friends

11. Before Tonight's Big Party

12. Cleopatra Eyes

13. A Matter of Time

14. Rest Your Head

ECOVILLAGE: Phoenix Asteroid

Quince Records (Japan)
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Ecovillage is a two man Psychedelic/Shoegaze band from Sweden. They have both been involved with different bands over the years. In 2005 they went on an journey together which changed their view on music radically. In 2006 they formed the band Ecovillage...with this band everything fell into its proper place and just clicked from the beginning. They felt that Ecovillage was something special so they put everything else on hold and dedicated all their time to their music. Ecovillage's music has often been described as euphoric, melancholic, ethereal and very psychedelic. Members of the band: Emil Holmström and Peter Wikström. The album features Jonas Munk aka (Manual/Darla Records), Jakob Skott (Syntaks/Benbecula Records/Ghostly International) and Sherlie Matthews (Motown Records).

“When I first heard Ecovillage, I couldn’t believe my ears. Sometimes it sounds like radiofriendly boyband pop filtered through shoegaze aesthetics, other times it comes across as psychedelic music — not so much in sound as in effect. This really is Dream Pop in the original sense of the term, but still sounding strangely timeless. Somehow it’s the kind of personal sounds that could only originate deep in the flourishing Swedish nature, far away from hipsterness and fancy musical trends. Killer album!” — Jonas Munk/Manual

“Fantastic album! Can easily imagine this doing really well!” — Ulrich Schnauss

01. Small Bright Points

02. Arise From The Ashes

03. Lost In The Tides Of Time

04. Here And Now

05. The Sun Will Shine On

06. Dawn Was Brand New

07. Horizons And Beyond

08. Invitation

09. When Souls Collide

10. The Key

11. Phoenix Asteroid

12. Mustard Seed

GOLDSTONED: Le Connoisseur

Quince Records (Japan)
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Sergeant Pop is back. Mistaken by many for the unlawful child of Paul McCartney and Ronnie Spector, nephew of Belle & Sebastian, and/or cousin of Paul Weller, he is in fact heir to the complete Henry Mancini and Burt Bacharach catalogue as well as Mayor of Motown: Patrick Goldstein is his name, GOLDSTONED is his game. International peddler of luxurious production, sparkling melodies and trader in jangling guitars, on "Le Connoisseur"--his fourth release from Japan--solo artist and multi-(instru)mentalist GOLDSTONED even crosses over into Kraftwerk and Steely-Dan territory. Our Man In Berlin ensures an early spring with his spirit lifting "Don't Look Down," gives you the Thomas Crown feeling with "One for the lovers" and gets heavily funky with soulful brass and mean guitars on the late 70s Londonesque "She is love." ... Ah, if only you, dear reader, could hear what I have heard. This is Pop. Live. Direct. And in Technicolor. Get GOLDSTONED!

01. Don't Look Down

02. She Is Love

03. One For The Lovers

04. Those Were The Days Of Disco

05. All The Things She Said

06. Take Her In Your Arms

07. Brand New Girls

08. Waterdaze

09. Always On My Mind

10. Greetings

11. Enter Me

12. Summary

HEAVINESS: s/t

Quince Records (Japan)
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last copy!

Heavïness are a shoegaze/experimental three-piece based in Stockholm, Sweden. They might be one of the best things since My Bloody Valentine. At least they do sound a bit like MBV on the first listening. Quince Records wondered why this 2006 album was originally only a self-release in Sweden.

Swedish orchestra Heavïness’ own make of mayhem pop has been very well met in the recurring shoegaze camp. Electric violin, driving drums, flowing guitar and bittersweet vocals lead the the path through a dark forest of young anxiety, longing and oppression. Songs that strike you down with their brute force only to pick you up with the the beauty of their melodies. Live they have been known to blow the hats off unsuspecting audiences. This is their acclaimed debut album in a special Japan issue featuring a bonus track and new artwork.

01. Not Yet

02. Saddest Colour

03. Nothing Forbids You

04. Vermilion Boots On

05. Your Velvet Wrapping

06. How You Avoid The Sugartrap

07. Places

08. Where The Pixies Go

09. Black Marzipan

10. Touchlast

11. Curtains Of Rain *

THE HUSSY'S: Super Pro+

Quince Records (Japan)
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Do the departed listen to their T-Rex records in heaven? One of many questions posed on the second album by Glasgow's The Hussy's. A superabundance of hooks explains the handful of commercial licensings already under The Hussy's belt (from Payless Shoes to MTV's The Hills and Paris Hilton's BFF), but for the rest of us, there's ALSO a solid dose of lyrical wit and humor. The punchy quintet features the sly yet substantial vocals of a lass called Fili and lead guitar of James McColl (ex-Supernaturals), while lyrical coverage takes in the semi-square, mods, roller discos, nuclear plant workers turned Russian beauty pageant contestants, and cross dressing nuns. This Japanese version of the album features "Rock Steady," "Jesus," and "Sister Mary Jo" as bonus tracks.

01. Rock Steady

02. Jesus

03. T-Rex Records

04. The Thrill

05. Roller Disco

06. Catherine

07. 1980's

08. Sister Mary Jo

09. Rachel

10. Atom City Girl

11. Instantly Attractive (The Barbecue Song)

12. Radar

13. This Must Be Love

14. Poppy Day

LOTHAR: Montgolfier

Quince Records (Japan)
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Snappy Swedish pop gets an uncharacteristic shoegaze treatment on the debut album by Lothar, a Stockholm 7-piece (4 guitars!) whose sound was purportedly changed when the members set up their rehearsal space next to a whirring, ticking, and buzzing power station on the outskirts of the city. "...[V]ery very good stuff recalling Blonde Redhead, Stereolab, Pia Fraus and the straightforward end of Deerhoof. The guitars are set to 'noisy', the songs are very catchy and very energetic and the singer is a lady. I'd heartily recommend this to those folks who are rather fond of early Lush records." —Clinton @ Norman Records

01. Malone

02. Whizz

03. Nesebar

04. Montgolfier

05. Carol is knitting

06. Orange skin, guillotine

07. By November

08. Coq au vin

09. Cars and cranes

10. Raincoat

11. Our days will pass

LOVEBITES: Essence

Quince Records (Japan)
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Danish cult favorites Lovebites have returned after a long hiatus with the album “Essence”. Though well-travelled, the band claims Copenhagen, Denmark as their home, where they had a string of hit singles in the mid-90’s. This time around, Lovebites offer up a dish: power pop guitars, oftentimes driving and energetic, somewhat reminiscent of Popsicle with Mathilde Lunderskov’s reflective voice singing of summer and travels over carefree melodies. A refreshing album, “Essence” will captivate fans of The Cardigans and Ivy without a doubt.

The album on Quince Records includes re-recorded songs from the band’s second and third albums, which were originally available in Denmark only.

01. Are You Ready?

02. 10,000 Miles Away

03. In Essence

04. Someday

05. Another Girl

06. Snow on a Summer's Day

07. Picture Book

08. Star

09. Last Summer

10. Face the Mirror

11. Smooth

12. Travelling

13. Hey, Look Around

14. A Strange Week

MAÑANA: Interruptions

Quince Records (Japan)
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With ‘Interruptions’, Swiss 5-piece Mañana take us on an eclectic journey through their very own universe, thriving on contrasts and experiments. Their powerful, stirring and epic soundscapes can occasionally be referenced to influences like Mew and Sigur Ros. The driving drumbeats serve as a solid basis on which the keyboards and guitars can develop their unique spaces and the freedom to spin out of control at the right moment. And in the middle of this is Manuel Bürkli’s powerful yet fragile voice as the focal point of their music. Produced by Ken Thomas (Sigur Ros, M83, Bjork).

“Mañana’s music does a lot to you. It triggers things in your head and deep inside, in your heart. ‘Make A Tiger’ is outstanding proof of that — a song that sends you on a far-away trip, yet never leaves you alone. This touches me, and there’s no higher compliment I could pay to music.”
- Markus Kavka, VJ and Producer, MTV Networks Germany

01. Loyalty

02. Unbalance

03. Make A Tiger

04. Broken Solid Side (To Be)

05. Monster

06. Red

07. Elephant

08. Little Lights

09. Berliner Blau

10. Roadside Museum

11. Unbalance (sonic.ht Betty & Waveforms Remix) (bonus track)

12. Make A Tiger (sonic.ht Remix) (bonus track)

13. J+A (bonus track)

MIXTAPES & CELLMATES: Rox

Quince Records (Japan)
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Stockholm combo Mixtapes & Cellmates return with “Rox,” their highly anticipated second album. Previous albums and EPs were compared with The Radio Dept and Postal Service. The band is now a 5 piece with a new drummer and three lead singers. While the rock elements of guitar feedback, up-down rhythms, and judicious keyboard usage hint at the influence of Primal Scream’s “Give Out But Don’t Give Up”, the group’s distinct melodies and fantastic song writing are intact and better than ever. “Rox” was engineered by Johan Gustafsson (Last Days of April) and recorded at Studio Grondahl. The Japanese edition of Rox features two exclusive bonus tracks: “Summer” and “Apoidea.”

01. Never

02. Soft Eyes

03. Soon

04. Rain, Letters, Memories

05. Sunday

06. On Fire

07. All The Lights

08. The Lesser Half of Cynical Boys

09. The Brighter Place to Go

10. All of The Above

11. Summer (bonus track)

12. Apoidea (bonus track)

MY LITTLE PONY: Think Too Much

Quince Records (Japan)
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last 2 copies

My Little Pony is a new band on the friendly Oslo pop scene. The debut album "Think Too Much" is a critically acclaimed gem. My Little Pony pull on influences like Paul Simon and The Beatles, but create their own convincing mix of classic pop music and newer indie like Jens Lekman and Raymond & Maria. With their mellow, indiepop and folk-tinged soundtrack packed with trombones, saxophones, banjos and slide guitars they have charmed their way into the hearts of at least one or two people. Enough people, in fact, that this Norwegian release from late 2008 is now being re-released in Sweden, the Philippines, and Japan. This, the Japanese edition on Quince Records includes three bonus tracks. For fans of Camera Obscura, Belle & Sebastian, Rilo Kiley, and Acid House Kings.

01. Skipping Down The Street

02. A Song For You (On Your 40th Birthday)

03. Comic Relief

04. Stars

05. Do You Really Love Me, Or Am I Just In Your Network

06. The Sunshine Goodtime Song

07. I Don’t Know Pt. 2

08. I Don’t Know Pt. 1

09. West Wing

10. MacGyver Blues

11. The Sun Turns *

12. I Don’t Know Pt.3 *

13. ----- *(hidden track)

NO AND THE MAYBES: No And The Maybes

Quince Records (Japan)
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No and the Maybes are an eclectic three-piece from Copenhagen, Denmark, on a mission to save and reclaim the catchy melody from wedding singers and Eurovision.

This Danish chamber pop ensemble have set their sights on creating vivid, engaging yet easygoing music with an after-kick, taking inspiration from 60s sounds through to more thoughtful 80s New Wave music. No and the Maybes make it their obligation to bring something fresh and exciting to the table, celebrating that little extra something to catch your attention and make you fall in love: surprising hand claps, finger snaps, a choir arrangement or an unexpected instrumentation.

Their DIY principles mean that everything they produce is lovingly stamped with their own unique signature, be it their music and videos. Similarly their live set breaks down the conventional lead singer set-up and gives way to a more democratic use of the stage, the band forming a line with a standing drummer and all members sharing vocal duties.

No and the Maybes’ eponymous debut album was released in Denmark on the reputed A:larm Music label (The Raveonettes, Mew, Band of Horses, The Dø to name but a few) towards the end of last year and led to the band hitting no.1 in the Alternative Radio charts, being nominated at the Danish Music Awards, performing on national television and being lauded across the press and media. And lately their single “Petra Petrified” was selected “Single of the Week” on the BBC. 2009 sees the band bring their warm electro-tinged pop to the Americas for the first time.

“Their sunny vocals lean towards The Magic Numbers, but instrumentally they evoke the early Cure, 1979 XTC and Aztec Camera. They’re a winner.” —MOJO Magazine, UK

01. Hummingbird Bed

02. Petra Petrified

03. Mouth

04. Can I Sleep With Your Friends?

05. Pretty Boring

06. Soldier

07. Monday

08. Hilarious

09. Washing Machine

10. I Know a Girl

11. Delirious

12. Bring Back the Sensations!

13. Melody *(Bonus Track)

POPFACE: Eleven Pieces of a Broken Heart

Quince Records (Japan)
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Popface has been synonymous with the Norwegian indie scene, or — more to the point — the shoegazer scene, since they first started in the mid nineties. For many years the band have perfected the balance between loud and quiet, between cascading walls of electric guitars and the gentle whisper of an acoustic guitar. On the new album "Eleven Pieces of a Broken Heart" the band has taken a step in a new direction. Instead of searching for the musical climaxes, the band is on a quest for harmony. The indie feeling is still very much there, and you can feel something building under the beautifully constructed pop songs, but the wild guitars have been pretty much turned down and the band comes forward as an harmonic unity, building up rhythms and patterns underneath the pop structures. Popface balances beautifully between their artistic vision and the great Scandinavian rock of today such as Sigur Ros and Mew. Fans of The Appleseed Cast should also take note.

01. See My True Colors

02. Easy Falling

03. Teardropper

04. Engel

05. In the Night

06. Strange/Quiet

07. Soft Spoken

08. Hear the Same Heart

09. My Time

10. Etienne

11. Leaving Song

12. Swimming Triplet *(Bonus Track)

RADIOSEED: There Has To Be More

Quince Records (Japan)
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RadioSeed is Peter Wikström of Swedish duo Ecovillage (whose debut album Phoenix Asteroid was released to much critical acclaim in 2009). The RadioSeed project combines undulating electronics amidst atmospheric, shimmering guitars, perfectly topped off with soulful, cathedral-like vocals. The album has some dream-pop moments but is always anchored by existential roots: a reflection of the emotional roller coaster that characterized the past two years of Peter’s life. Instrumentation includes guitars, saxophone, violin, piano, field recordings, cello, organ, Rhodes piano, synths, drums and bass, with Peter playing everything himself except for Indian dilruba and Greek bouzouki. Female vocals provided by Elin Blennborn.

“I’m loving the epic, shamelessly romantic sounds!” —Ulrich Schnauss

01. Magic Friday

02. Raspberry Cream Dream

03. Kissed Your Galaxy Goodbye

04. Like Water

05. Summer Shower

06. There Has To Be More

07. Keep Your Friends Close

08. Pearly Sister

09. You Make Me Better

10. Rise Your Mountain

11. Miracle Of Triumphant

RED CARPET: The Noise Of Red Carpet

Quince Records (Japan)
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Second album by the unsung heroes of Finnish indie pop, now available in the US! Sharing two members with jangle and shuffle meisters Ultrasport, Red Carpet’s new album is further testimony to the vitality of the (criminally overlooked) pop scene currently bubbling under in Finland. These 12 gorgeous, colorful songs are the perfect new discovery for fans of everything from Nada Surf to Buffalo Springfield!

“What do you get when you cross the songwriting of Simon & Garfunkel with the Red House Painters and have Teenage Fanclub play the results? Red Carpet!” -recordoffice.net.

“Finland’s #1 harmony pop group” -Rumba Music Magazine (Finland).

01. My First Goal!

02. Traitor On The Inside

03. Blood, Sweat And Tears

04. Reminder

05. What Have I Done

06. Sigh

07. Home

08. When You Sing

09. Golden Days

10. End Of The Season

11. Leave A Light On *

12. Second Thoughts

SANTA DOG: Kittyhawk

Quince Records (Japan)
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Santa Dog play sparkly, sassy, summer-soaked pop with chiming guitars and a sinister fringe. Think Blondie going two rounds with the Throwing Muses on the edge of a cliff with a stiff breeze whipping up skirts and mischief and you’re still nowhere near capturing the band’s distinctive sound and uniquely English charm. This Bristol-based four piece’s debut album, Kittyhawk, comes on the heels of their three self-released EPs that captivated audiences and press alike. Santa Dog are ‘perfect pop’ (Lostmusic), ‘more addictive than opium’ (Whisperin’ & hollerin’), and play ‘the kind of classic guitar pop that exists in its own universe, mercifully free of the shackles of hyperbole & trend’ (Norman Records).

01. Big Bang

02. Are you hot enough

03. Belle de Jour

04. Yeah Yeah Yeah

05. Rosa

06. Chemical

07. West Coast Boy Racer

08. Pop Coloured

09. Katy

10. Lucky me

11. Martyr on the ropes

SCARLET YOUTH: Goodbye Doesn't Mean I'm Gone

Quince Records (Japan)
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Scarlet Youth—Kalle Pyyhtinen’s (Shamrain) new band—blends huge, enchanting shoegaze melodies with dreamy Finnish melancholia. Add a dash of electro-pop and gently catchy indie goodness, and this Japanese double-CD echoes the best of The Radio Dept, Slowdive, and My Bloody Valentine all in one package. Disc one is their first album, plus two bonus tracks, “Silence 5am” and “Guiding Star.” Disc two is a special bonus EP, BREAKING THE PATTERNS, which was released in 2009 on the band’s own Homesick Music label. This is a collection of songs that will “truly make you feel lighter...not an autumnal or wintry soundtrack but one for late August days and nights. There’s a subtle premonition of the barren cold to come, but in that very moment you just cling to the warmth, the hunger for life, and go with the flow–wherever it takes you.” (tuskasi.com)

01. Sofia C

02. Catch Me When I Fall

03. Farewell Ghosts

04. I Will Be Waiting

05. Between Summer And Spring

06. Silence 5AM

07. Somewhere

08. Twilight Room

09. Walls Of Freedom

10. Night Falls Over London

11. Sunshowers

12. Guiding Star

13. Gleaming Endless Ocean

14. Wave Goodbye

15. Tokyo Daydreamer

16. High On Sky

17. Before The Surface Breaks

18. Sunshine Girl

SEASHELLS: Remains of Something Sweet

Quince Records (Japan)
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How I learned to stop worshiping UK pop, part one. It’s little secret that Radio Khartoum fell out of love with the UK in the 1990’s and fell in love with just about everywhere else. From the wooly north of Sweden, Seashells were one of my biggest early loves—or you might have called them a nail in the coffin of UK pop monotheism. And a lot of people agreed with me. But the weird thing was that everyone I talked to seemed to adore the the band for their 60’s pop loves (Love, The Association, The Zombies, The Kinks, Phil Spector and, of course, Brian Wilson), whereas I was getting something completely different out of the ‘Shells: incredible snap, bounce, brass, jangle and boundless zip. Great songwriting and tight arrangements which always seemed to be stopping and twisting on a 5-öre coin. Whatever your preference, here’s a brand new 2004 album (the first in ages) and it finds me loving the ‘Shells all over again (and for my same old reasons).

01. To Be Alone

02. Rivals In Love

03. Never Seen Anything Like This

04. Thru With Love (I Quit!)

05. Holy Girls

06. What I Need

07. No Points To Score

08. Older Than Yesterday

09. Landmarks (Of Our Love)

10. No Questions Answered?

11. Waving Goodbye

THE SONNETS: Sea Storm Blows Plus

Quince Records (Japan)
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last 2 copies

“Sea Storm Blows Plus” is the debut album from The Sonnets, a 5-piece band out of Malmö, Sweden, headed by songwriter Per Magnusson. The Sonnets are quite fond of writing handsomely breezy pop songs; frolicsome and playful, fellow Scandinavians Eggstone comes to mind. Ostensibly, “Sea Storm Blows Plus” is a shimmering production which is very much influenced by sunny sixties guitar pop. Substantially, The Sonnets blend within their swinging, sweet melodies glorious string arrangements and resplendent piano playing. And atop everything else is Magnusson’s affecting voice that’s as propelling as the layered, infectious pop The Sonnets create. The Japanese edition on Quince Records adds 4 songs taken from their debut single “City, Spark, Fire” (2003).

01. Shout at the Top

02. Happiness

03. Tale Told by the Cynical

04. Music

05. How It Feels

06. City, Spark, Fire

07. Capital City in the Sun

08. Sea Storm blows

09. Louden Up, Pretty!

10. Soldier

11. Succharine

12. Dissatisfied

13. Deborah

14. A Thousand Summers

SWEETNESS: Ashtray Floors

Quince Records (Japan)
QRCP-33

This charming band comes to our shores way of Japan’s Quince Records, but Sweetness hail from California. The quartet took a lot of time with their garage-y, bossa-nova-y, fuzzy country-ish boogie-woogie mish mash songs. The results sound like a blend like of Heavenly, The Cardigans, The Smiths, The Replacements, Joao Gilberto and Motown. It’s worth mentioning, though, that lead singer, Marie, is closer to Fairground Attraction’s Eddy Reader than to the Cardigans’ Nina. “Ashtray Floors” was originally released on the band’s own label in 2005. This Japanese edition is remastered and features new artwork and a bonus track.

01. Spellbound

02. Angry Candy

03. Renne Ran Home

04. I'm Not Sorry Anymore

05. Inbetweenwhiles

06. A Synonym

07. The Ballad Of You & Me

08. 5 Beautiful Things

09. I Shall Return

10. Time To Say Bye Bye

11. Lovenaplove

12. Rachel & Neil

13. The Way You Say My Name

TEANECK: Masters of Achievement

Quince Records (Japan)
QRCP-46

California three-piece, Teaneck, flaunt a confident rock sense and eminently hummable pop melodies on Masters of Achivement, their first full-length album. Known for their energetic live performances, Teaneck formed after lead singer, Loren Isaac, was hit by a car and realized the time to rock out was ‘now or never.’ The fast-charging trio developed an international following through the magic of MySpace, and eventually recorded with the producer of power pop faves, Ozma. The resulting songs fuse past and present, pungent and pleasant, with the taut simplicity that only a three-piece can generate. Skipping along through sunny, country-tinged rock, alt-pop catchiness, and triumphant rock and roll, Masters of Achievement certainly lives up to its title. For fans of Weezer, Fountains of Wayne, and The Foo Fighters. Initial release features limited edition special packaging.

01. So Will I

02. Kiss And Tell

03. I Won't Lie

04. I Could Never

05. Shining Thru

06. Midday Monster

07. I Should Care

08. Anne Marie

09. New Fast Song

10. Crybaby

11. Fall For It

12. Grievous Theme

13. Gone For Good

TUPELO HONEYS: Tupelo Honeys Salute You

Quince Records (Japan)
QRCP-52

Stockholm-based boy/girl duo of twins Joel and Linn Edin have played music more or less all their lives, and finally released their debut “Tupelo Honeys Salute You” this summer. After their passion for making fresh and unpretentious music was re-ignited by none other than Lily Allen, Tupelo Honeys concocted a mournful but optimistic, lush but intimate album, brimming with allusions to Eggstone, Camera Obscura, Arcade Fire, and The Kissaway Trail. Sub Pop artists Loney, Dear guest on a few songs, along with other friendly cohorts who also lend their talents. The Japanese version has different artwork and two great bonus tracks.

01. Boy you're all right

02. Oh what a day

03. Seven o'clock

04. Nothing, nothing, nothing

05. Moonlight serenade

06. Andy, are you sure?

07. Without my princess

08. The return of the weeping man

09. In her sphere

10. Le Grande

11. ---

12. And she cried out loud *

13. We are so much more *

ULTRASPORT: Nothing Can Go Wrong

Quince Records (Japan)
QRCP-23

High speed jangle pop from Finland brought to you by way of Japan. Appropriately, Ultrasport’s sound comes from somewhere between Keigo “Cornelius” Oyamada’s first band The Flippers Guitar and Finnish organ quirksters Karkkiautomaatti. Think of bouncing guitars and the quick pitter-pat of brushed drums, eccentric organ styling, backing vocal choruses that might have come from surf rock, twisting flute action, and endearingly humble lyrics tumbling sing-song style from the young pipes of four fine Suomi lads. Scandinavian pop is sweet, and on their debut album Ultrasport are hell bent on proving that there’s more to the “genre” than Sweden and the Kings of Convenience. Still, fans of Sweden (whose Seashells would make a great reference point) and the Kings are hereby advised to take note. Echo that for The Lucksmiths, The BMX Bandits and early 22-Pistepirkko. 10 songs, 2 of which are previously unheard, 4 remixed and 4 re-recorded (and rearranged) versions of songs from the band’s 3 sold out EPs.

01. Nothing Can Go Wrong

02. Fire On The Streets

03. Kissing Summers

04. Behind The Playground

05. You Are Evil

06. It's Hard To Look Dignified When People Sit On You

07. The Boy That Never Lied

08. Ballgames

09. Sharing Secrets

10. Much Of Your Heart

V/A: Guitar Sketch

Quince Records (Japan)
QRCP-20

A collection of guitar pop curated by Quince Records of Japan, a label that obviously has its finger on the collective pulse of a global movement. And what a diverse and widespread movement it is, ranging from Sweden (the bittersweet but ever-graceful Club 8, breezy shambolic legends Seashells, and quirky spaghetti-tinged newcomers Caroline Soul) to Indonesia (the ethereal jangle of Sweaters) and the Philippines (the uptempo and swinging Carnival Park). And a lot of places in between like Ireland (the fab jangle of the much ballyhooed Language of Flowers), Scotland (the intimate plinky-plonk of Ally Kerr), France (the Riviera-esque space bossa of Discover), Spain (the bouncy Carrots, and the sophisticated orch-soul of Fine!) and Denmark (laid back romantic grooves courtesy of Tiger Baby), to name a few. Names more familiar on this continent would include Fonda (US, jangle and pulse), Mascott (Le Grand Magistery act, need I say more?), Evening Lights (angular and emotive house band from the Shelflife Records crew), and Canadians Paper Moon (powerpop Cardigans) and The Heavy Blinkers (rising stars on the “soft rock” orch scene). 17 songs in all, and predominantly exclusives. Australia and England are strangely absent, but then you probably didn’t need Quince’s help for that too, now did you?

01. Paper Moon - So Nice

02. Seashells - A Distant Bell

03. Fonda - Life

04. The Heavy Blinkers - Try Telling That To My Baby

05. Mascott - Turn Off / Turn On

06. Language of Flowers - Tara Mascara [Supermarkets edit]

07. Caroline Soul - That's When She Came In

08. Evening Lights - On & On [new version]

09. Tiger Baby - Kelly [M. A. edit]

10. Discover - My Jet Setter Friends

11. Hollow Horse - One Day

12. Carrots - One, True, Three, Love [acoustic version]

13. Fine! - Two Moves

14. Sweaters - Somethings Are left Unsaid

15. Carnival Park - Poignant

16. Ally Kerr - Future Mending

17. Club 8 - If You Say