Friday, 14 March 2014

OXYGEN THIEF - EP REVIEW

Oxygen Thief - One Day This Will All Be Fields (Xtra Mile Recordings) 
Oxygen Thief - One Day This Will All Be Fields

Release Date: 24th March 2014

One man song machine Barry Dolan is back with another fist full of songs for ears - whether you like it or not. This latest EP is conveniently coming out just as Dolan and crew embarks on a meticulous tour of the UK which pretty much gives you no excuse not to catch this guy live. The stuttering acoustic punk of 'Badge of Dishonour' kicks things off like Frank Turner or Jamie Lenman and instantly I'm hooked in to the world of Oxygen Thief once again. 'Trial & Improvement' has an alarming relentlessness about the circular riff that only pauses to sharpen its teeth before coming at you again before the slower pace of 'Vectors' stumbles in to the early morning light with a sense of hope and despair in equal measure. Now, here's an idea we can all get on board with: 'Self-Righting Mechanism'. Dolan sings of a "sudden crisis of confidence, sudden crisis of common sense" and you'll either be completely on board or lost to his words.

Dolan's battered acoustic guitar and bruised vocals are in fine form on 'Flight Paths' but I would love to hear this song with a rumbling bass line, thumping drums and maybe some distortion on that guitar. Then again, there are times when I remember how lucky I am to even be able to hear music and then I stop bitching about stuff and get on with life. Just in case you weren't sure where this EP was going next, it's off to the early 90s for a cover of Wildhearts classic 'Suckerpunch' which demands a circle pit and cheap beer in plastic glasses. The final track of this salvo is 'On Your Easy Marks, Get, Set Go' which features the brilliantly simple but political repeated chorus lyric of "I Want My Vote Back" - a message to Nick Clegg I'm assuming as I can't imagine Barry Dolan even tolerating David Cameron's face never mind supporting his policies. Get out around the UK with Oxygen Thief, I think you'll not only enjoy it but I have a sneaking suspicion you might learn something as well...

More information: https://www.facebook.com/oxygenthief666?fref=ts

Live Dates:

21st March - The Monarch, London
25th March - Gwdihw, Cardiff
27th March - Murphy's, Waterford
28th March - Thomas House, Dublin
29th March - Sandinos, Derry Londonderry
30th March - McHugh's Basement, Belfast
1st April - Cellar 35, Aberdeen
2nd April - Cerberus, Dundee
3rd April - Opium, Edinburgh
4th April - Fox & Newt, Leeds
13th April - JT Soar, Nottingham
14th April - Star & Garter, Manchester
16th April - Grumpy Whisker's, Cheltenham
29th April - The Exchange, Bristol
9th May - Talking Heads, Southampton
10th May - White Rabbit, Plymouth
11th May - The Fleece, Bristol
12th May - The Flapper, Birmingham
13th May - Rock City, Nottingham
14th May - Audio, Glasgow
15th May - Corporation, Sheffield
16th May - Sound Control, Manchester

17th May - Islington Academy, London

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