Tag Archives: Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs

Spring Offensive – Not Drowning But Waving

This blog claims to be somewhat Oxford-focused, but let’s be honest, we could do better, Gaz Coombes and TEED posts aside. I was planning on going to Truck Festival this year, and in the build-up to it I set about listening to a whole host of bands that were set to be taking to the stage. As it turned out, I couldn’t make the festival, but I had stumbled across a rich vein of brilliant local bands. For today, step forward Spring Offensive.
A few days ago they posted a video for their new single ‘Not Drowning But Waving’ which I wrapped my eyes around for the first time today. While previous music from them has a charming indie-melancholy lilt, this track feels like a step into a slightly different direction. Again, it’s quite a downbeat current running through the track lyrically, but it feels more atmospheric, grander in its scope and execution. They’ve dreamed bigger and brought this track to life in a brilliant way. The track and video feel a lot like Foals’ wondrous ‘Spanish Sahara’, both in the slow building but ultimately glum-euphoria of the end of the track. The video also uses a body of water to carry the storyline, as in ‘Spanish Sahara’. All of this just further wets the appetite for a potential LP down the line. Check out the video below.

Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs debut album to come in June

We all know about the ethereal properties of the harp; the ability to induce a wistful other worldly realm, often leading to some sort of time travel adventure. What is lesser known is what happens when horses play harps. As it turns out, it leads to me being able to directly predict the future.

So it gives me great pleasure and a large dollop of smugness to reveal that one of HPH’s 2012 predictions has come true already. To quote that  previous post: “A full length record could really help Oxford’s-own Orlando Higginbottom (Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs) etch his music further into people’s skulls.” And hey presto, as I chanced upon discovering this morning while buying the new Maccabees album online (it’s a bit special), Amazon told me that 2012 will see a debut album from Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs.

Of course, upon further research, I’ve now discovered that Orlando has been talking about this debut album as far back as summer last year, but this horse is a bit deaf. But who cares. The album drops in June and to whet your appetites, here is the excellent Household Goods from the EP of the same name which I was lucky enough to review for Culturedeluxe back in 2010.

2012 preview – Jacques Greene, Polarsets, The Heartbreaks and more…

I’m in quite a list-tastic mood right now, so following on from HPH’s top 10 albums of 2011, it makes sense to have a little look ahead.

Well, as the post-dubstep genre continues to fire off into every possible direction, we have some interesting things to look forward to. First and foremost, there will be brand new Burial LP out early next year, which is so exciting it makes my brain want to explode. His little ‘Street Halo’ EP earlier this year was brilliant, but just too short for my greedy desires. So the opportunity to fall head first into the first Burial EP for around 5 years is beyond exciting.

I think it’ll be a big year for producers in general. After seeing the success of SBTRKT this year, moving from dishing out the odd track here and there to a brillant debut full length LP, I’m hoping to see more artists follow in his footsteps. Firstly, will Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs continue dishing out 3/4 – track records? A full length record could really help Oxford’s-own Orlando Higginbottom etch his music further into people’s skulls. Secondly, I really hope 2012 sees a lot more music from Jacques Greene. He’s such a talented producer, I’m pretty much just dreaming of a beautiful LP landing in my lap from the skies. In the meantime, we can just keep listening to what he’s done so far. So here’s ‘Another Girl’ by Jacques Greene.

Moving on, could this be the year that the ‘Blessing Force’ captivate the music world? For the uninitaited: (nicked from the Guardian)

Blessing Force are a community of artists, musicians and writers in Oxford. Often found hanging out at Foals’ stable The House of Supreme Mathematics, the collective are a bit like The Young Ones meets University Challenge. Thankfully, there are a handful of really great bands involved, particularly Jonquil and their frontman Hugo Manuel, aka Chad Valley, Trophy Wife and former Youthmovies member Andrew Mears, aka Pet Moon.”

I’m a big fan of a few of the bands, like Motherhood, Solid Gold Dragons and Trophy Wife. It’s quite interesting to have a bit of a movement going on in Oxford, but they do seem to keep themselves to themselves a bit, in that there isn’t much of a physical buzz about them out on the mean streets of Oxford. Will any of the bands break through on their own to permeate the nation’s consciousness? Who knows. In the meantime, there’s a wonderful mix-tape of the Blessing Force bands that’s been stuck up on soundcloud. You can listen to it here: http://www.guardian.co.uk/music/2011/nov/28/blessing-force-stutters-1?CMP=twt_gu

Finally, there are a few more bands currently floating about in that pre-first-album fuzzy landscape. Various Cruelties look set for big things next year, Chemicals is an excellently executed track and excites me with regards to what else could be coming from them.


Polarsets are another band that have been on my radar for a while since they popped up on a Kitsune compilation I reviewed several months back for Culturedeluxe. I described their track Sunshine Eyes as: “Indie dance at it’s best,” and everything else I’ve heard from them since is equally as good.

Polarsets – Leave Argentina


Another helping hand from Kitsune led me to the excellent The Cast Of Cheers. Angular, Foals-esque fretful riffage leads the way here. The band recorded their debut album back in 2010 and stuck it up on bandcamp for free, but it’s now sadly disappeared from there. Hopefully 2012 will see more from them.

The Cast Of Cheers: I am a lion


And two more bands to end on. Clock Opera seem to have been teasing us for an eternity with a wealth of great singles. A debut LP is on its way next year, apparently. They’ve also thrown together some brilliant remixes too, including a reworked version of Everything Everything’s MY KZ YR BF.

Clock Opera – Lesson No. 7 (In Session)


The Heartbreaks make fantasticly Byronesque indie rock music. They’ve got a great vocalist with great lyrics, catchy riffs and I have absolutely no idea if they have a full-length debut out next year, but it’s about time they bloody well  did!

The Heartbreaks – Save Our Souls: