First up is my (Luke’s) guest selector. I first came across Fika Recordings based on a suggestion from a Norwegian friend, even though the label is based in London. Their stable of beautiful folk and indie bands have had me enraptured since, so I was rather excited when Tom Fika agreed to choose a record for us. Here’s what he has to say:
“People often ask me what exactly it is that, as a record label boss, I look for in a band in order to take them under Fika’s wing. It’s an impossible question to answer – yet back in 2011, watching sisters Hannah and Jen perform an early show as Owl & Mouse, I knew they had something special: the ability to tie my stomach in knots, make my eyes well up and bring a permanent smile to my face.
A year or so later, Hannah’s vocals featured on a couple of Tigercats’ b-sides, yet it was to be another year before I managed to convince her the time was right for a debut Owl & Mouse EP. Don’t Read The Classics from that 7” still takes me places few songs manage. It took another couple of years or so to bring Departures together, and that slow gestation has seen Owl & Mouse evolve in to something truly special.
Hannah’s songwriting is bittersweet and honest, the melodies infectious and joyous. It’s one of the best sounding albums I’ve put out on Fika Recordings, and courtesy of Tom Humberstone’s artwork, one of the best looking too. Departures remains an album I love to escape into. I hope you do too.”
Next up is Josh’s pick. Here’s what he has to say about his pick, No Intro: “Heard this release a few weeks ago and instantly fell in love. The jazz rock disco combo some how really works. Can’t wait to get my hands on the vinyl of this myself to interrupt all the Christmas music.”