Best Rarely Heard Songs of 2009 Vol. III: Furcast, Ape School, Regrets and Brunettes, Lower Heaven and Pure Ecstasy

furcastthebandThe Best Rarely Heard Songs series continues today with music from bands that many of you have probably never heard of: Furcast, Ape School, Regrets and Brunettes, Lower Heaven and Pure Ecstasy.

California
indie duo Furcast – comprised of Johann Carbajal and Vincent Mazza – evoke a dark, cinematic film noir sound on the track, “Grey is Old,” a composition which could have fit nicely on a Kill Bill soundtrack. Shortly after the mid-point of the nearly seven-minute track, the song explodes into a brief fury, and subsequently transforms into a creepy, shifting piano and percussion piece that ultimately winds down and fades away, leaving the listener transfixed. Chances are if you like this track, you’ll enjoy most or all of Furcast’s debut EP, Together. Massive Attack fans take special note.

“Grey is Old”Furcast from Together
Furcast on MySpace

On “Wail to God,” one-man band Michael Johnson, aka Ape School, carries along the torch of film noir influenced music, and takes it to another level with the ascent of firey, almost disco-esque, beats accompanied by a neo-psych, Moog-heavy flare. The two and a half minute reverb-loving track closes with a steady descent “back to earth,” complete with space alien-like sound effects. Throughout the Ape Man debut, Johnson’s influences, which range from Phil Spector and Brian Eno to The Beach Boys and Animal Collective, are unmistakable. Before founding Ape School, Johnson was briefly a member of two terrific bands, the Lilys, and Florida‘s indie outfit, Holopaw.

“Wail to God”Ape School from s/t debut
Ape School on MySpace

The attraction to Los Angeles indie rock band Regrets & Brunettes was immediate within the first half minute of hearing the band’s song, “Tough Love,” off their debut LP, At Night You Love Me, released last December. This single is the perfect precursor to the album itself, so if you really dig this track, you’re probably going to love the album.


“Tough Love”Regrets and Brunettes from s/t debut
Regrets and Brunettes on MySpace

Lower Heaven are an accomplished quintet from the Silverlake area of Los Angeles that crafts haunting, reverb-heavy melodies obviously influenced by some of their favorite self-proclaimed bands, such as My Bloody Valentine and Jesus and Mary Chain. Lower Heaven took their name from the lyrics of an Echo and the Bunnymen song, and they’ve opened for bands such as the Black Rebel Motorcycle Club, Darker My Love and The Black Angels.

“Fruitless”Lower Heaven from Ashes
Lower Heaven on MySpace

Pure Ecstasy crafts sweet, lo-fi psychedelic pop reverberations that sound a bit like Wavves and Animal Collective in myosis. While we usually dislike songs that stop and restart at various points in the composition, Pure Ecstasy’s track, “Easy,” is too good to pass up. We hope the band will receive more “blog love” soon, and continue to grow their fan following.

“Easy”Pure Ecstasy from Voices
Pure Ecstasy on MySpace

Other installments in this series:

Best Rarely Heard Songs of 2009, Vol. I – Sun Airway, The Ambience Affair, Brian Olive, The Bats, Land of Talk & More

Best Rarely Heard Songs of 2009, Vol. II – Ex Norwegian, We All Have Hooks for Hands, Pistol for Ringo and Fredrik

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