Sometimes it is just plain astonishing how much time it might take something (and by what avenue) to find it's way onto your radar.
On Monday morning I walked into the KCRW music library as I do every Monday morning to distribute their copy of the playlist from that day's Morning Becomes Eclectic. I was greeted with a gently dance-able sound of synthesizers, drum machines, and softly distant vocals. "What are we listening to?" was the immediate question I posed to my friend/library employee Nassir well before taking the time to say hi.
"The Radio Dept. Do you know about them?"
"No," I replied and was so shocked that there was something this good and this rooted in everything that I like about music that I struggled with my words, "It sounds like... It sounds like..."
"Yeah," he said "I've been trying to figure out who they remind me of too."
I pointed out that whether or not they sounded like anyone in particular their sound was dance music that was rooted in an indiepop tradition which is sound that I am in no way indifferent to. Fortunately there was an extra copy of the record that I promised to provide a loving home for. The album in question is called Pet Grief it was released by Labrador Records in 2006! This is around the same time that I discovered Suburban Kids With Biblical Names having just had their originally released by Labrador record #3 released by Minty Fresh here in the States. I've visited the Labrador site several times since then for information on that band, and I'm sure something about the Radio Dept. must have entered my subconscious somewhere. I simply cannot figure out why it has taken me so long to actually hear this band! Of course when you discover something is never the important part, the important part is that you discover it at all. I have the Radio Dept. now; we all have the opportunity to listen to their new single, "Freddie and the Trojan Horse" on their Myspace page (while you're there you *really* should listen to "Worst Taste in Music" from Pet Grief it's sad/clever pop perfection,) and by September (or thereabouts) we'll all be able to order copies of their brand new record right here. Should be pretty great, something to look forward too...