Alcest is a band in constant evolution. Since the year 2000, this French collective, lead by singer/multi-instrumentalist, Neige, has managed to go from playing Black Metal to Indie Rock-oriented soundscapes of profound evocative power. Their recent album Shelter is a perfect example of this change. Gone are the blast beats and the screaming vocals that were so palpable in their magnificent previous album Les Voyages De L’ame. Instead, Neige, drummer Winterhalter and a selected group of guest musicians have been able to create an affecting record that has surprised fans (both positively and negatively) and opened new musical and commercial possibilities for the group. Drummer Winterhalter briefly spoke with PureGrainAudio about this brave move.

Christchurch, New Zealand four-piece pop/rock band Ashei share a passion for honest songwriting and a thumping live show all of which caters to rock fans looking for something fresh. With influences ranging from pop to jazz, Liam Muir, Emma Cameron, and Dan Perry each bring a unique musical approach to the group and their sound.