Tuesday, 25 April 2017

GOZER GOODSPEED – EP REVIEW

Gozer Goodspeed – The Barrel Headlong in to the Night EP 
Gozer Goodspeed - The Barrel Headlong into the Night EP


Release Date: 19th May 2017

Gozer Goodspeed is a bit of a conundrum, I’m pleased to say. On the surface of things, this Plymouth based singer-songwriter is a blues artist, through and through. It doesn’t take long, however, to realise that there are influences hidden just below the surface with rock, indie, reggae and folk all showing their colours throughout the five tracks on this EP. Opening with the title track, Goodspeed hits an immediate stride on ‘Barrel Headlong in to the Night’ with ‘Joshua Tree’ style guitars chiming out through the cold, dark night calling you in you from the shadows. The melodies and pattering percussion give this a slightly sub-tropical feel at times which, mixed with the guitar makes this a uniquely intriguing piece of music.

‘What You Got Going on Lewis’ is a lively Blues number with a wonderful lyrically journey that rolls off the tongue while the ivories tinkle and the guitar keeps a tight rein on the rhythm – it’s also probably the only song to feature characters called Lewis and Wendy which makes me think this isn’t an entirely fictional story. By comparison, ‘Far Away, Blissed Out & Free’ is a far more relaxed tune which speaks of campfires on cliff tops and sunsets wrapping the night around you as rich acoustic strings strum and Goodspeed’s breathy vocal snakes like smoke in to the air. On ‘Every Night, Saturn’s Rings’ we find our hero in more reflective mood, creating those late-night vibes yet again. Goodspeed has a depth and adeptness with a six string that is rare these days and makes for the kind of music that you can get lost in with a good pair of headphones or a great set of speakers.

This EP, the second from Gozer Goodspeed, finishes up with the best of the bunch, in this writer’s humble opinion. ‘When the Blue Man Met the Headshrinker’ is not a song to be taken lightly as it’s raw Blues stomp swaggers in to view through the saloon doors. Some background moans, a tambourine rhythm and Goodspeed’s powerful acoustic riffing make for the kind of tune that will have any venue up on its feet and stamping along. Sure, Gozer Goodspeed is a singer-songwriter, that’s a given. But he’s also a wonderful story teller, a riotous rabble-rouser and an excellent performer. All in all, this is an excellent collection of songs but with two EPs under his built, surely it’s time for an album…


Live Dates:

12th May – Inn on the Shore, Downderry (FREE ENTRY)
20th May – Old Timer’s Wine Bar, Exeter
31st May – Blues Bar & Grill, Plymouth
27th August – Haywood Cider Farm, Bodmin
2nd September – Fantasy Festival 2017, Helston
15th September – Inn on the Shore, Downderry (FREE ENTRY)
21st October – Venezia, Exeter

22nd October – The Rod & Line, Saltash

Monday, 24 April 2017

DOLLIE DEMI – SINGLE REVIEW

Dollie Demi – Ruby Lips 
Dollie Demi - Ruby Lips


Release Date: Out Now

The delectably uproarious Dollie Demi is back with a new single that is everything pop should be in this day and age – that is to say, it’s riotous, bratty and infectious. ‘Ruby Lips’ opens with a sexy little bass line and the repeated “Mwah” which is pure Shampoo meets Kate Nash. This is the by-product of a generation that grew up on the Spice Girls and Hole at the same time – sassy pop melodies but kick ass guitars and lyrics that don’t take any prisoners. Dollie Demi has moved on from the ‘potential’ stage of her career and is now in fully fledged pop-classic creation mode so I wouldn’t advise getting in her way unless it’s to get down the front at one of her gigs.


Live Dates:


9th June – Spice of Life, London

VELVET TWO STRIPES – SINGLE REVIEW

Velvet Two Stripes – Hey Boy (Rough Trade / Snowhite)
Velvet Two Stripes - Hey Boy

Release Date: Out Now

If I started talking about a trio of women named Diggelmann, Diggelmann and Mock operating out of the town of St. Gallen you’d be forgiven for thinking that I was banging on about a trio of nuns or a banking group. But no, I’m actually talking about the hard rocking three piece Velvet Two Stripes and their new single ‘Hey Boy’ is worth talking about – loudly. At almost bang on three minutes, this tune pulls together the dirty, bluesy sound of the White Stripes, the Dead Weather, We Three And The Death Rattle, Royal Blood and the Black Keys to create something gloriously uproarious in amongst the sea of distortion and tribal rhythms. The scratchy, almost desperate vocal of Sophie Diggelmann is as unique as it is enthralling and when you roll that in with the pure rock created by Diggelmann, Diggelmann and Mock (aka Velvet Two Stries) you just have to let yourself get swept away. Ya dig?


Watch The Video: 

SOFI DE LA TORRE FEAT. TAYLOR BENNETT – SINGLE REVIEW

Sofi De La Torre Feat. Taylor Bennett – Views of You 
Sofi De La Torre - Views of You


Release Date: Out Now

“Fuck me up, fuck me up if you want”. That’s what you call an opening, lyrically speaking. The marvellous Sofi De La Torre is back with new single ‘Views of You’ and she’s brought rapper Taylor Bennett along for the ride. This is tripped out, blissed out pop that is half mumbled as the sun breaks the darkness over the horizon at the start of another day. The sparse beats and mellow synths create and ambience for De La Torre to do her more-chilled-than-Lana-Del-Rey thing over the top until you can’t help but be absorbed by her and her music. Blissful.



Saturday, 22 April 2017

INGRID – SINGLE REVIEW

Ingrid – Boom (Dishonest In July) (Stereoscope Music) 
Ingrid - Boom (Dishonest In July)


Release Date: Out Now

“Ingrid slapper debutsingel!” That’s how the PR email accompanying this single from Swedish artist Ingrid began. Now, I’m all for multilingualism but this would seem to be a particularly stark way of selling a female musician so I steeled myself to consider the music on its own merits, regardless of Ingrid’s promiscuity. ‘Boom (Dishonest in July)’ is a perky, poppy piece that sits somewhere between Clean Bandit and Angie with a hint of a modern Eurovision entry about it. You could easily imagine hearing this wafting on a warm breeze out of bars and clubs on the coastal strips of Mediterranean Europe as the sexy synths and Ingrid’s sultry and confident vocal worms it’s way in to your ear. Oh, and there’s a Disney key change at the end just to keep you on your toes. Slapper or not, this is a fun slice of summery pop.


AIDA – SINGLE REVIEW

Aida – Let’s Ride
Aida - Let's Ride

Release Date: Out Now

There’s absolutely nothing to dislike about this tune from French artist Aida unless you hate the 80s in which case you’ll probably hate it. From the video that might as well be a trailer for the Goldbergs, to the squelchy synth bass line and the super soulful but poppy vocals of Aida, ‘Let’s Ride’ is a joyous romp through 80s references (the good stuff, not Thatcher and AIDS). Aida’s voice is so assured, classy and unflinching in its power that it’s hard to believe she’s not gracing national airwaves on a regular basis but I guess sometimes it’s a matter of right place and right time. For those that have enjoyed the renaissance of Nile Rodgers and the resurgence of Pharrell Williams, I would suggest that Aida might be right up your cul-de-sac.


Watch The Video: 

Friday, 21 April 2017

PLASTIC BARRICADES – SINGLE REVIEW

Plastic Barricades – How Goldfish Grow (Plastic Tribe Records)
Plastic Barricades - How Goldfish Grow

Release Date: Out Now

London based trio Plastic Barricades grabbed my attention with the video for this song which is a nicely quirky piece of animation but there is a great song behind the visual as well. ‘How Goldfish Grow’ is a tale of how the environment will impact the size of growth – from Goldfish, to ego to population – and it’s a tale worth taking heed of. Starting with a sad yet perky poppy guitar line that is part Vampire Weekend and part Young Knives, this song immediately grabs your attention before settling in to a satisfyingly choppy rhythm. “We all should know how goldfish grow” is perhaps not the most obvious or rock’n’roll lyric but the message is clear and the video rams it home. There’s a certain Europop charm about this that goes along with the indie-pop kitsch and it’s actually nice to hear a band creating something to be enjoyed whilst also listening to some meaningful lyrics.


Watch The Video: