Monday, 30 September 2013
Anyone in Leeds on Friday/Saturday should be dragging their arses to this place, free entry, and some top bands
This may also be one of the last Wet Nuns gigs if they are to be believed (they are known liars) and Black Moth will be taking a break to work on their second album
This may also be one of the last Wet Nuns gigs if they are to be believed (they are known liars) and Black Moth will be taking a break to work on their second album
Friday, 27 September 2013
So how exactly does a band make it to the top spot on this list? In Zico Chain’s case you just have to release literally the best rock album of the entire year. As a band they’ve been going since around 2004, they released a brilliant debut mini-album and followed this up with at the time a really good album (everything they’ve released prior to this is now considered a warm up) and 2010’s ‘These Birds Will Kill Us All’ EP hinted at a bigger more aggressive sound, what a hint it turned out to be.
So on The Devil In Your Heart, you get everything Zico Chain have worked at so far, Amplified! The choruses which have always been catchy as hell are now stadium sized big, the aggression sounds like someone with roid-rage in full effect, all mix together to create some of the best songs of any bands career. Kicking off with ‘Evasion’ which is truly a statement of intent, showing that the 5 year wait since the ‘Food’ album had been worth it. How they are not huge already since releasing this album I have no idea, when Slash, Duff McKagan and Steve Harris are endorsing your band, more people should be taking notice.
There’s pretty much something for everyone on here and not a single song doesn’t imprint itself into your brain by the end, special mention goes to the adrenaline fuelled ‘Our Evil’ and the heart-breaking ‘Case #44PQ_110807’ inspired literally by the case of Sophie Lancaster, which I urge people to be aware of at http://www.sophielancasterfoundation.com/. The Devil In Your Heart is not only the best british rock album for quite some time, it’s also the sound of band coming into themselves and realising their own limitless potential, the only problem with this album is how the hell they’re going to follow it up.
Buy here: http://zicochain.net/pre-order/
I don’t think I need to go into how big a Wildhearts fan I am, previous posts attest to this enough, so when I heard Ginger was doing a pledge campaign for a triple album, it was a no brainer, signed triple cd please! Now the only issue with pledge campaigns is that you pay your money for the artist to use to record their album, and this takes quite a bit of time as can be expected, plus then there’s the pressing and waiting, and it all pushes you to the brink of exasperation, so yes pledge campaigns are awesome, but also frustrating, luckily in cases like this, they’re well worth waiting for.
Now a 30 track album is indeed an endurance test for any artists fans, but Ginger being the genius that he is has managed to pull it off with aplomb, in fact other than a slight dip in quality around 20 odd songs in, there’s not a dud track on here, and the dip is more just my dislike of instrumental tracks and ‘Very, Very Slow’ just seemed a bit of a filler and that’s literally the only criticism you can levy at this beast of an album.
Stand-out tracks, too many to mention really, but even the missus sings along to ‘Another Spinning Fucking Rainbow’ and ‘Taste Aversion’ has to have the most disgustingly funny chorus ever written. I seriously doubt whether anyone ever could do another triple album of this quality, and I once again find myself humbled by the talent that is Ginger Wildheart.
Buy here: http://gingerwildheart.bandcamp.com/album/555-triple-album-30-songs-2012 (no longer available on physical format)
10 years ago, Hot Water Music released ‘Caution’ an album pretty much perfect, twelve tracks of punkrock greatness with huge melodies and heaps of energy, 2 years later they followed it up with ‘The New What Next’ it was not good, things did not get better, they then split. Now after such a long gap they return with ‘Exister’ so is it any good? Well of course it is, it’s the No.3 album of the entire year!! Now this is what they should have followed Caution with, this is 13 tracks of high energy punkrock with the walls of melody and the catchy as fuck tunes that we all knew Hot Water Music were capable of making again.
Lead single ‘Drag My Body’ is a beast of a track, only outdone by closer ‘Paid In Full’ which is the best way to end any album ever, the album is chock full of short sharp bursts of energy and with 13 tracks in under 34 minutes, none of them outstay their welcome, the choice between this album and the two above it was almost impossible to choose, all 3 really deserve the top spot.
Buy here: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Exister-Hot-Water-Music/dp/B007J5PABI/ref=sr_1_1?s=music&ie=UTF8&qid=1380284724&sr=1-1&keywords=hot+water+music
Sometimes a band shows promise, and you feel that they might become better in future, but even rarer this happens and instead of becoming merely better, the band take things stratospheric, and surpass all expectations, welcome to the new album from While She Sleeps. Previous album(ish) The North Stands For Nothing had some cracking metal songs and its title track had a certain catchiness to it, This Is The Six, melds so many styles and influences together while still keeping a core metal sound but with some of the hugest choruses, and most inventive arrangements heard within the genre. I was watching Download 2012 on the tv the other day and was sad to see so many of the best bands being so old (no offence), and the younger ones were fucking awful, Black Veil Brides (offence), While She Sleeps are up there with Bring Me The Horizon as the future of metal.
While most people I know might balk at listening to a band as heavy as this, I believe they’d still have to agree that songs such as ‘Seven Hills’ have huge crossover appeal. Hopefully with bands like this getting more and more radio play these days, they can go onto bigger and better things, and if you want to keep metal alive, standby up and comers like this.
Buy here: http://www.amazon.co.uk/This-Six-While-She-Sleeps/dp/B0083YTBJQ/ref=sr_1_1?s=music&ie=UTF8&qid=1380284756&sr=1-1&keywords=while+she+sleeps
Technically this album is pulling double duty, it’s included in last year’s Top 50 and it’s just been officially released, so to those who already follow Ginger Wildheart pledge campaigns we’ve had a good 8 months of already enjoying the hopefully first of many Hey! Hello! albums. However now is exactly the right time to give this album a proper release, why? because this is the most perfect summer album you are ever likely to hear, soaked in pop melodies with enough rock to keep fans of Gingers other work happy. This was supposed to be a bonus album that even Ginger himself didn’t expect to become the monster it has, it’s actually the most refreshingly fun album he’s released in years. If Gingers gift for songwriting and choruses that fill your head for days wasn’t enough you also get the lovely Victoria Liedtke’s duet vocals that make these really good songs great.
Kicking off with lead single ‘Black Valentine’ an ode to all the non-romantics out there, with some of the funniest lyrics Gingers has ever come out with, or the insanely catchy ‘Swimwear’ which takes less than a full listen for various parts of the song to become firmly lodged in your brain, like swimwear (sic). The best advice any band can ever be given is contained in the lyrics to ‘How I Survived The Punk Wars’ and if you’re in a band or even thinking about starting one, you need to listen to this first. After multiple listens the main thing you can say about this album is that’s it’s as damn near perfect as a pop rock album can get, there are no lulls, every single song comes complete with killer choruses, witty lyrics, and more energy than my one year old on a rampage.
Considering this started as a bit of fun, the beast that it became is nothing short of amazing, this weekend all I want to do is crack open a few beers sit in the sun and shove the album on repeat, and it’s almost as if that’s what it was created for. So maybe it was never intended to be what it is, but here’s hoping there’s more to come, and when you put it on and open a beer, have a drink to Hey! Hello! and them taking the world by storm, it’s more than deserved. Special credit also goes to the amazing Frank Kozik artwork, which ties off the release nicely, albums like this make writing reviews and this blog worth doing. So don’t delay and get this album right now and help it keep climbing the charts.
Buy here: http://heyhellomusic.bandcamp.com/
The Deftones have always been a band with something a bit special, they stood out from the nu-metal pack and pretty much stuck to doing their own thing, and while that genre of music may have catapulted them to bigger things, they’ve always been more than that. Unfortunately lately they seemed to have almost lost their way a little, and while in the past, excitement of a new release was always high, lately it’s become more along the lines of, yeah I’ll get round to listening to it when I have chance, Koi No Yokan makes you excited to listen to the Deftones again, it is literally the most beautiful metal album I’ve ever heard. Chino’s vocals soar like I’ve never heard him before while still occasionally taking it down to the violent screams that he’s famed for, Music wise the riffs are still massive and more inventive than ever, and even bass bringing tracks like ‘Poltergeist’ to a whole new level. So Koi No Yokan it may literally translate to ‘Premonition of Love’ but for me it translates to it being exciting to be a Deftones fan again.
Buy here: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Koi-No-Yokan-Deftones/dp/B009ERK1T0/ref=sr_1_1?s=music&ie=UTF8&qid=1380284858&sr=1-1&keywords=deftones
This is the first Cribs album that took me a few listens to fully absorb the whole thing, it could be that there’s so much going on or it could be the difference in styles as a result of using a number of different producers, who knows, but when it clicks, you end up with some of the best songs the band have ever produced. Starting off with ‘Glitters Like Gold’ all shimmering harmony and full of melodies only the Jarmans can provide, from this point on there’s ‘Come on, Be a no-One’, ‘Chi-Town’, ‘Anna’ and ‘Back to the Bolthole’ all of which stand up against anything they’ve released prior, all layered with more fuzz than usual, and showcasing influence from if anything Nirvana’s In Utero, maybe it’s because they roped in Albini for some tracks, but the album definitely has the same vibe and distorted style. So while not as poppy as usual, it’s still an amazing album, and chapter in the history of one of the UK’s strongest bands.
Buy here: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Belly-Brazen-Bull-Cribs/dp/B007KE1ID2/ref=sr_1_3?s=music&ie=UTF8&qid=1380284889&sr=1-3&keywords=the+cribs
I’ve always held a grudge against Enter Shikari, back in the day I saw the tail-end of their set on the Thursday night at Leeds Festival 2006 and some dickhead in the crowd jumped and landed on my ankle, putting me on crutches for the whole festival and making me miss half the first day, I blamed Enter Shikari for this completely. Because of said hatred I always avoided their music and branded them wankers, then last year I decided to finally subscribe to Rock Sound (one of the few rock music publications worth reading these days) and I got this album free, hesitantly I decided to listen to it. Okay so maybe I was wrong not listen to their music over my grievance, because A Flash Flood Of Colour is one hell of an album, an album that sounds like it was pure fun to make, with some studio banter thrown in for good measure, plus one of the best intro’s to any album ever. I’ve read stuff saying the album isn’t political but there seems to be a good few rants here and there. Not only have I managed to finally listen to this band but I’ve got another band to look forward to the next release of, still blame them for the ankle though, wankers!!!
Buy here: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Flash-Flood-Colour-Enter-Shikari/dp/B005UQO122/ref=sr_1_1?s=music&ie=UTF8&qid=1380284834&sr=1-1&keywords=enter+shikari
Some bands can just be reliable, as with Dinosaur Jr., you know they aren’t going to release a crap album, even at their worst, they’re still tons better than your regular band. However don’t believe for a second that J.Mascis and co. are playing it safe, I Bet On Sky equals and at times surpasses songs from their heyday, lead single ‘Watch the Corners’ especially, showcasing the thick guitar and laid back croon the band have always been famed for. 28 years as a band on and off and they still write and play with the same passion heard on their self-titled debut in 1985, maybe I’m being cynical but there aren’t too many bands around now that I can imagine being around this far down the line still releasing relevant music, and it makes me a little sad. It’s hard to write anything new about Dinosaur Jr., if you know their music you know you need this.
Buy here: http://www.amazon.co.uk/I-Bet-Sky-Dinosaur-Jr/dp/B008HN05HK/ref=sr_1_1?s=music&ie=UTF8&qid=1380285055&sr=1-1&keywords=dinosaur+jr
Tuesday, 24 September 2013
Jamie Lenman of Reuben's new double album
Pre-order this album now!!!!!
Monday, 23 September 2013
I never really got The Vaccines, didn’t really listen to any of their records much and always thought of them as a bit of ‘meh’ band, then I saw them live on TV at a festival performing ‘Wetsuit’ from their first album, and it got me hooked, now I really like The Vaccines. Luckily for me, just as I was starting to like them, they released another album, a brilliant album that was actually even better than the first that I was just getting into. Come Of Age kicks off with intent on lead single ‘No Hope’ and for the next 10 songs the band treat you to a gritty punky almost at times grungy mess of catchy tunes, when I say grungy they remind me of bands like Pavement who weren’t really grungey but had some elements, slacker rock probably covers it best.
It might sound trite but this album really does see the bands come of age in their own right, gone are the trashy punky numbers that lack memorability and in their place are songs with choruses you’ll be singing along to before you’ve finished listening to the album. With one good album, and one great album under their belts, all bets are off for this band, however tracks heard recently such as ‘Melody Calling’ show a lack of the recklessness that is the bands charm, fingers crossed that they don’t lose their way.
Buy here: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Come-Age-Deluxe-Vaccines/dp/B0086UZWTA/ref=sr_1_5?s=music&ie=UTF8&qid=1379954051&sr=1-5&keywords=the+vaccines
Saturday, 21 September 2013
To say this album has been a longtime coming is an understatement, 15 years since 'Show World' have passed and a few side projects really haven't cut it for anyone wanting their sugar-coated pop rock fix. So finally Redd Kross re-emerge seemingly out of nowhere with an album they've been promising for at least 5 years or so, the big question, is it any good? It's so easy for a band to comeback after this long with a lacklustre version of what they were once capable of, for examples of this see The Stone Roses average 'Second Coming' or Guns N' Roses abysmal 'Chinese Democracy' but that's just not the Redd Kross way. So what we have here is an album that can sit alongside Neurotica, Third Eye and Phasehifter as one of their best, we have 10 perfectly crafted pop rock masterpieces full of melodies that only the McDonald brothers could manage mixed with their obvious love of 70's glamrock. kicking off with lead single 'Researching The Blues' it becomes evident that if anything the brothers McDonald are on a better form than their last album, reducing the number of tracks to make sure there is absolutely no filler here. If you're already a Redd Kross fan then i'm preaching to the converted because you already know how good this band are, if you aren't already a fan then do yourself a favour, seriously.
Buy here: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Researching-blues-Redd-Kross/dp/B008F8GASU/ref=sr_1_3?s=music&ie=UTF8&qid=1379757608&sr=1-3&keywords=redd+kross
Having been a fan of bands Richard Hawley has worked with previously such as Longpigs and Pulp, I decided to take a chance on this album, having heard nothing of his other solo work, and it’s amazing just how talented he obviously is. Being a fan of dark albums this was always going to appeal to me, bringing to mind artists such as Mark Lanegan and Leonard Cohen but with so much more emphasis on the instruments, it feels like the styles wouldn’t go together, dark soulful vocals over heavy psycadelic guitar, but Hawley manages to pull this off with mastery. The first minute of ‘She Brings The Sunlight’ sucks you in to his world of despair and holds you there for the next 50 minutes, this is one of the times taking a chance really pays off.
Buy here: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Standing-Skys-Edge-Richard-Hawley/dp/B007ITJGGK/ref=sr_1_1?s=music&ie=UTF8&qid=1379757572&sr=1-1&keywords=richard+hawley
Another band who decided to end their hiatus (there’s a lot of that happening these days) luckily it’s all the best ones doing it and Ultrasound are no exception, even if we had a 13 year wait!!! Luckily I’ve heard word they’re already working on album number 3 so the next might not be such a wait, anyway Ultrasound were one of the most promising bands of the late 90’s and released a flawed masterpiece in ‘Everything Picture’ I say flawed because a few tracks were on the self-indulgent side, this time around they’ve managed to avoid such traps. Play For Today is chock full of the wit and melody that they’ve always been known for, but trimmed down a little, songs like ‘Welfare State’ prove just how relevant and superior they are and always were to other rock bands. ‘Glitter Box’ provides some beautiful vocals from Vanessa Best which seem a little under-used this time, especially considering how good her voice is, so here’s to album 3 being just as good.
Buy here: http://www.fiercepanda.co.uk/shop.php?release=436
Another band I just got into this year, again recommended by Ginger Wildheart, and what a recommendation, a flurry of different styles and most importantly they bring the heaviness with it, and Laila Khan’s vocals are literally heavenly. Not being ‘with it’ I will tag all the parts not rock as Urban, which is lazy but I’m not going to spout off about dubstep and grime and other things when I don’t know anything about it, but when it comes to music in general I do, and Sonic Boom Six are like a breath of fresh air for all the stale music you come across. You may not agree entirely with everything that this political urban punk band have to say, but you have to agree with the way they stand by their convictions and don’t shy away from voicing them. And again, special mention has to go to Laila’s vocals, amazing!
Buy here: http://sonicboomsix.bigcartel.com/product/sonic-boom-six-cd-album
Having been a Green Day fan since 1994, I’m still not ready to write them off, even after the utter shite that was 21st Century Breakdown I still had faith, then they announced they were to release 3 albums in a year, my hopes were not high. Then I heard Uno, the first of the trilogy and wow, my faith has paid off, this is the album they should have made after American Idiot! Too many huge songs with massive chorus’ to mention but ‘Kill The DJ’. ‘Oh Love’ and ‘Let Yourself Go’ are easily the best, I can imagine the band getting criticism from people saying it’s just Green Day by numbers, well that’s what I fucking wanted personally so I’m glad, unfortunately the other 2 albums weren’t nearly as good as this one, but who cares, this one’s awesome.
Buy here: http://www.amazon.co.uk/iUno-Green-Day/dp/B008C1O8CA/ref=sr_1_1?s=music&ie=UTF8&qid=1379757409&sr=1-1&keywords=green+day+uno
Joining a new wave of extreme metal, Parkway Drive have been pushing the boundaries since the get-go, alongside bands like Bring Me The Horizon and While She Sleeps, they’re proving that the genre can be spiced up a little and proving how stale the other bands have become. Atlas kicks off with a slow carefully picked intro which builds into a crescendo of noise, and while they do experiment here and there believe me they still bring to noise! Favourite track for me has to be ‘Swing’ with it’s “This soul was born for battle, My heart was built for war” refrain but the whole album is a joy to listen to from start to finish, excellent band as always.
Buy here: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Atlas-Parkway-Drive/dp/B009B1UY6O/ref=sr_1_1?s=music&ie=UTF8&qid=1379757375&sr=1-1&keywords=Parkway+Drive
Thursday, 19 September 2013
Buy here: http://babygodzilla.bigcartel.com/product/oche-7-track-mini-album
Buy here: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Lost-Songs-Will-Know-Trail/dp/B0094F2P6O/ref=sr_1_2?s=music&ie=UTF8&qid=1379607876&sr=1-2&keywords=trail+of+dead+lost+songs
Thursday, 5 September 2013
Buy here: http://www.jumborecords.co.uk/tickets.asp?sort=&event_id=16047
Sometimes surprises come along when being a music obsessive, and a band you’ve never heard of manage to blow you away, John Coffey are such a band, recommended by Ghost Of A Thousand’s Jag Jago as he co-produced the album with the legendary Pelle Gunnerfeldt. John Coffey are europe’s answer to Every Time I Die with a load more melody and just as much aggression, which basically means you understand more of the lyrics, ironic as they’re a Dutch band yah? Kicking off with ‘Announce’ and lyrics about sleeping with a gun under your bed, JC don’t let up for the next 38 minutes with a barrage of punkrock hardcore assault, enjoy.
Buy here: http://johncoffey.nl/shop/
Considering the majority of this band came from Joe Lean & The Jing Jang Jong (no seriously) you would quite rightly expect them to be a) an indie rock band and b) a bit shit, thankfully TOY are neither. TOY are psychedelic-post-shoegaze blissful brilliance, music often fits with moods and this album is definitely for the chilled out, it’s an album to listen to when you are doing nothing else but giving it your full attention. Tracks like ‘My Heart Skips A Beat’ wash over you with beautiful melodies while closing track ‘Kopter’ takes you on a psychedelic journey for nine minutes ending with a squalling wall of freakout noise, this is definitely for fans of bands like Six. By Seven, Spacemen3 and that ilk.
Buy here: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Toy/dp/B008DVKTMW/ref=sr_1_1?s=music&ie=UTF8&qid=1378372291&sr=1-1&keywords=TOY