The Sifting Pan

Helping you find those Indie Gems!

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Song of the Day! Cut Off Your Hands – You Should Do Better

Cut Off Your Hands, New Zealand based Indie Rock band, are back making music after a three year absence.

Cut Off Your Hands are still the amazing indie rockers I remember them being back in 2007. But now it’s 2011 and we’re on the brink of the bands newest LP Hollows which, so far, sounds very promising. The song You Should Do Better is the first single off of Hollows and I can tell just from this track the LP will be something big. You can just hear the artistic passion surging out from this wonderful new song. This song is leaving me with some very big exceptions for the upcoming album, but its not like i’d expect anything less then great from a band who has delivered so well in the past.

You can hear how the band has made some changes and strides from their 2008 debut album You & I. Just listen to the wonderful track Still Fond off their debut to hear what has happened in the course of three years and also just to know how amazing these guys were for their time. The song remains one of those great indie rock tracks from when I was still being influenced heavily in alternative music.

Cut Off Your Hands – Still Fond


Song of The Day! Floraline – Eighty One

You best believe the shock I received when I discovered the year Floraline released the track Eighty One. Apparently Floraline has released one album, and one album only, and that would be the band’s self-titled debut Floraline which was release waaaaay back in the year 1999. It’s hard for me to wrap my brain around the fact that a tune like this could possibly be 12 years old. The pleasant electronic beat and laid back guitar seems like they’d fit in so well in today’s modern indie pop music, not the new wave movement of the late 90’s/early 00’s. They other interesting fact about Floraline is that they make seemingly euro-pop music from Atlanta, Georgia. I never would have been able to guess that a southern indie band in the year 1999 would’ve crept its way into my Itunes and into my heart. Everytime I had listened to Eighty One, up until this day, I had been lying to myself and convinced that this five-piece outfit was just another indie act on the verge of breaking out. I now find they existed in a magical time before before Myspace, Facebook, and all other forms of social media so information on Floraline is very limited. This is somewhat disheartening because I now find the sad truth that I will never get to see new material from this hidden gem of the nineties. I guess I have no choice now but to pick up Floraline on Amazon and see what other untold gems are in store for my listening pleasure.

This is the only image in existence on the internet of the Atlanta based Floraline

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Song of the Day! Passion Pit – Cuddle Fuddle

Who ever said indie gems had to be new? This is a little treat from the now immensely popular Massachusetts band Passion Pit and it glistens out from the band’s early and unknown days. Cuddle Fuddle is a whimsical fairy tale-esque song with a beat that never ceases from their 2008 EP Chunk of Change, which if you didn’t already know started out as a simple Valentines Day gift for lead singer Michael Angelakos’s love interest at the time. Well what started out as a gift found its way to the internet where the EP circulated and blew up big time, primarily due to the band’s song Sleepyhead. Since that point Passion Pit decided to get serious and got to writing and recording their spectacular debut album Manners, which in my opinion became one of the best albums of 2009. If you had asked me who my favorite band was at anytime between 2008 into early 2010 I would of most likely said Passion Pit, but sadly I’ve been exposed to bigger and better things and they have failed in keeping me interested with their lack of new material. I eagerly await news of the bands follow up album, which was slated for a spring 2011 release, but nothing of the sort exist at this time. It seems with all the hype and popularity the band garnished they have found no need to make new music and instead choose to re-issue Manners as a deluxe edition in 2010 and now sit on a gold mine in record sales. I really hoped early on the band would take the path of music, not profit, but what’s a band supposed to do when everything they’ve made is amazing electropop music that everyone can love and bang it out to. I guess for now I can just listen back to the good old days with some Chunk of Change as I patiently wait for a sophomore album from what used to be my favorite band.


Song of the Day! Balthazar – Fifteen Floors & Throwing A Ball

Balthazar are throwing a ball from the Kortrijk area of Belgium

Balthazar – Fifteen Floors

Balthazar – Throwing A Ball

Kind of a busy weekend for me so I don’t have much time to keep up with my Song of the Day. I’m so sorry to disappoint my immense amount devoted viewers (Could you pick up the sarcasm?) so to make up for missing yesterday, and possibly tomorrow, I’m throwing two amazing indie gems at you today.

For most people I feel the name Balthazar gives the wrong impression as to what this Belgian Rock/Pop outfit is all about. Try to wipe clean your demonic pre-misconceptions and understand that Balthazar make music that is more on the heavenly end of the spectrum. Their 2010 debut album Applause was like a gift from the Gods themselves and never ceases to sweep me off my feet with each listen, and is undoubtedly the best album of 2010 that you have never heard. So what makes this album so special? Just listen to Fifteen Floors and tell me with a straight face it is not in fact something special. (And if you did I’d simply call you a liar) The trumpet, the bass, the mother-fucking Disney endings… it’s all there! And that’s only track numero uno out of a wonderfully crafted set of eleven songs. Now I could’ve added any other track from the album to this post but I had to choose my personal favorite from Applause, Throwing A Ball. It’s like a fairy tale dance hall hit minus the glamour and princess bull sh*t. The bass guitar in the song just takes over and the gritty viloin accompaniment just drives it all the way home. Throw in the catchy lyrics and it’s very hard for me to find reasons not to love this song. If Fifteen Floors or Throwing A Ball even remotely sparked your intrest I highly recommend sending a few euros Balthazar’s way and pick up a copy of Applause. 

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Song of the Day! First Rate People – Girls’ Night

First Rate People are sure that it's never not happening from Toronto, Canada

Download the Girls’ Night MP3 free via

Girls’ Night is a sugary sweet duet that will make even the coldest hearts thaw out. The layering of girl to boy vocals works so damn well and gives the song a sort of whimsical lovers appeal for me. This is a beautiful indie pop gem that more then deserves some attention. In fact, the whole band First Rate People deserve some well needed recognition. Girls’ Night isn’t the only wonderful thing you can look to from this folk-pop outfit. First Rate People’s EP It’s Never Not Happening offer an expansion on this talented young bands sound. From the groovy as hell track Orion, to the funkadelic influenced Charlie Kaufman, this band has more to give then the average indie artist and covers a wide array of the indie music spectrum. First Rate People is definitely a band I will be revisiting constantly as await news of an upcoming debut album.