Al Spx
December 15, 2012 9:22 PM   Subscribe

Cold Specks hails from London, and is fronted by Canadian singer [and sometimes guitarist] Al Spx. Her vocals are beautifully inspired by gospels of the American South.

I Predict a Graceful Expulsion is their first album, released May of 2012.

Official video for their single Hector.
Video of the Huxton Hall Session for Winter Solstice
Other videos
posted by FirstMateKate (29 comments total) 37 users marked this as a favorite

 
She's got a really cool voice. Thanks for this.
posted by Ephelump Jockey at 10:23 PM on December 15, 2012 [1 favorite]


Is she a praying mantis?
posted by Brocktoon at 10:48 PM on December 15, 2012


Just listened to Hector, and yeah, very likable voice. Honest. Refreshingly free of the various kinds of overdone affectations that pass for "soul" or "feeling" among so many singers today.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 11:02 PM on December 15, 2012


gorgeous, thank you.
posted by guybrush_threepwood at 11:18 PM on December 15, 2012


Is she a praying mantis?
black widow
posted by stbalbach at 11:39 PM on December 15, 2012


Her music is being called 'doom-soul'. I was intrigued why the song is called "Hector" and thought it might be inspired by this painting The Grief and Recriminations of Andromache over the Body of Hector Her Husband, but who knows (and can't find lyrics). Seems closer to Night of the Living Dead than Greek mythology.
posted by stbalbach at 11:50 PM on December 15, 2012 [1 favorite]


Ooo. Lovely. Thank you. Their sound fits right within my "comfort music" zone.

The Hoxton Hall Session versions of the songs are my favorite. This is a group I'd go out of my way to see live.

When I was looking for more information about the group, I noticed the coined phrase "doom soul" to describe Al Spx's sound (and apparently she's the one who first used the description). But is this a real genre? Because I'd love to fill a playlist of "doom soul" (and I'm sure I've got some already but just didn't think about classifying it that way, because she really reminds of someone that I can't think of at the moment).
posted by paisley sheep at 11:55 PM on December 15, 2012


Great videos. Glad to know about her. I'll be keeping my eye out for more.
posted by Pudhoho at 12:58 AM on December 16, 2012


Is she a praying mantis?
black widow


Except black widows aren't particularly known to remove their mate's head.
posted by Brocktoon at 1:30 AM on December 16, 2012


This is great, thanks.
posted by iamkimiam at 1:52 AM on December 16, 2012


She has a nice line in covers, too (I was at this show).
posted by Infinite Jest at 2:37 AM on December 16, 2012 [1 favorite]


Ever since you posted that inexhaustible wellspring of awesome, the quasi folk music AskMe, I have decided that I'm just going to listen to anything you like. This band is further proof that my strategy is working.
posted by Harvey Kilobit at 4:25 AM on December 16, 2012 [1 favorite]


Your favourite band doesn't suck. Huh, surprising.

This is good.

posted by ersatz at 6:14 AM on December 16, 2012 [2 favorites]


I try to hate Starbucks like I'm supposed to, but between their standing up to the antigay people and having Cold Specks as one of their free downloads recently, I'm just not managing to do it.
posted by texorama at 6:22 AM on December 16, 2012 [2 favorites]


Sounds at various times like several of my favorite bands. The rollicking rhythm in Hector reminds me of Pinback. The quiet tumbling of Winter Solace and the way she's singing reminds me of Constantines or Crooked Fingers. Pretty great, thanks for the link!
posted by carsonb at 7:01 AM on December 16, 2012


Whoa. Beautiful stuff, thanks. My wife says she sounds like Adele, but I don't know who that is.
posted by Aversion Therapy at 7:37 AM on December 16, 2012


Her music is being called 'doom-soul'.

Something that actually resembled a cross between doom metal and soul would probably be pretty cool, but this—while also pretty cool—ain't it.

If trip-hop were invented today, would people be calling it doom-hop? Probably.
posted by kenko at 8:15 AM on December 16, 2012


My wife says she sounds like Adele, but I don't know who that is.

Lucky you!
posted by ashbury at 8:26 AM on December 16, 2012


Hooray I'm glad this went well.

I think her being described as "doom soul" is due to the subject of her songs, and how lamenting the music is. It's a bit doom-and-gloom. But doom already has a really specific connotation, like kenko said. And her music doesn't really subscribe to that meaning of doom. So, yeah, it's a bit off but I totally got what they were saying.
posted by FirstMateKate at 8:35 AM on December 16, 2012


I heard her interviewed on Q awhile ago and she said the doom soul thing was a joke. Apparently on her Facebook page she had described her genre as doom soul and a couple other pairs of words/genres that were a bit ridiculous and the media picked up on doom soul once they noticed her.

Also, she's great.
posted by carolr at 9:01 AM on December 16, 2012 [1 favorite]


Really enjoying the videos. Definitely going to be looking out for her at SXSW this year if she comes.
posted by immlass at 10:19 AM on December 16, 2012


I feel like there's something missing in me that I just don't "get" her. I saw her live a few months ago and it was the most boring show I've ever seen. I get that she has a haunting voice, but I found the music totally bland. I'm willing to accept that I'm the problem though, since she's clearly blowing up all over the place. I also don't really Joel Plaskett's music, so there might be a broken segment or two in my Canadian Music gene.
posted by arcticwoman at 10:25 AM on December 16, 2012


For those of you that are wondering about the "doom soul," thing, it exists.

I give you Witch Mountain.
posted by Ephelump Jockey at 11:21 AM on December 16, 2012 [3 favorites]


arcticwoman: I saw her at the Calgary folk festival and I have to agree.
posted by Pruitt-Igoe at 12:03 PM on December 16, 2012


Digging this. Really liking "Blank Maps" too. There's so much good indiepopfolkrock of this ilk coming out of England recently that I'm kind of jealous of Londoners.
posted by threeants at 12:07 PM on December 16, 2012


I feel like there's something missing in me that I just don't "get" her. I saw her live a few months ago and it was the most boring show I've ever seen. I get that she has a haunting voice, but I found the music totally bland.

(Even though I'm liking their stuff, I can totally see this too. My first thought was, if this music has one primary flaw it's that it's a little of-the-moment. "Winter Solstice" sounded like Bon Iver to me.)
posted by threeants at 12:09 PM on December 16, 2012


Brocktoon: "
Is she a praying mantis?
black widow


Except black widows aren't particularly known to remove their mate's head.
"

Well, they eat their mates so that would include the head part presumably. And you gotta admit, black widow is a visual pun. She's black. She's a widow because she has a cannibalized (?) mate next to her.
posted by stbalbach at 12:19 PM on December 16, 2012


"Winter Solstice" sounded like Bon Iver to me.

Sounds kind of Ra Ra Riot to me, which is juuuust fine.
posted by kenko at 1:04 PM on December 16, 2012


Hey, I saw her play at the Hillside Music Festival last July. She played a good set!
posted by kaibutsu at 6:25 AM on December 17, 2012


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