Sunday, 30 August 2015

BRUJA - EP REVIEW

Bruja - Bruja EP 
Bruja - EP

Release Date: Out Now

If you're looking for the bastard child of the Long Blondes, the Lovely Eggs, Nirvana and Helen Love then you can stop looking....you weirdo. Barnsley trio Bruja have a new EP for you and those that love their music with a raw, unbridled energy will love this. 'XXX' kicks things off with a guttural, gang-like grunge romp that leaves you in no doubt that these three have arrived. The deadpan delivery of the vocals on 'Drone' puts frontwoman Delyth Wadsworth in the same league as Courtney Love or, more importantly, Kathleen Hanna while 'Horsey & You' takes things down an energy peg and gets a little more spaced out on your ass while retaining the spirit of Nirvana at all times.

'Sugarbaby' is not the sweet, love ode that you might have expected but is, instead, a bass driven and thumping tune full of menace and a macabre spirit with an unhinged sense of perspective. On 'Buzzy Bee' the trio take the rock aspect up a notch and the bass work of Wadsworth again makes for a dirty foundation while Lewis Naylor's guitar wails like a recently released banshee. Final track 'Bon' has a more jerky feel to it that returns to that Lovely Eggs space on the Venn diagram as the bass pops and bounces before a Brassy-esque melody sweeps in to end this EP on a positive note. Bruja have definitely made it on to my list of bands I want to see live but as their forthcoming tour only gets as far South as Reading and I'm holed up down in Cornwall this is unlikely to happen......yet.

More information: https://www.facebook.com/brujaband

Listen/Download Here: https://bruja14.bandcamp.com/

Live Dates:

4th Sept - The Intake, Mansfield
5th Sept - The Sun Inn, Reading
6th Sept - The Parish, Huddersfield
8th Sept - West Street Live, Sheffield
9th Sept - Verve Bar, Leeds
10th Sept - TS One, Middlesborough
11th Sept - The Shed, Leicester

12th Sept - The Rigger, Stoke

VICTORIA - SINGLE REVIEW

Victoria - Summertime 
Victoria - Summertime

Release Date: Out Now

As the British summer (stop laughing at the back) draws to a close it's probably a bit late to discover a stomping indie-pop summer anthem but there's always next year, right? Looking like Marcus Mumford's chirpier little cousins, London five-piece deliver 'Summertime' like a tune that was written by Ed Sheeran for One Direction before they announced their split so instead they offered it to the Feeling to give it a sense of authenticity before selling the rights to a major mobile phone network for their summer advertising campaign. In all seriousness, this is a song with serious pop chops and the commercial potential huge - especially if the US market picks up on this and makes it the main montage tune of next summer's big rom-com. This might be your last chance to get a slice of sunshine in to your summer months so jump on board (no reference to the Victoria line, honest).

More information: https://www.facebook.com/VictoriaBandUK


Watch The Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lmETygZHocA&feature=youtu.be

ABLE ARCHER - SINGLE REVIEW

Able Archer - The Warden 
Able Archer - The Warden

Release Date: Out Now

This is a more mellow affair than this Dublin quintet's last effort but where 'Ghost Maker' was all edgy guitars and impassioned vocals, 'The Warden' is more mature and influenced by alternative 80s tunes. A wash of keyboards and bouncing guitar notes are nudged along by gentle but persistently rolling beats and a vocal full of charm and wit. This isn't the most instant or immediately engaging track every created, not even by this band, but it fits the mood as the light fails on a disappointing summer and the greyness starts to set in.

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

Listen Here: https://soundcloud.com/pluggin-baby/able-archer-the-warden-1

Watch The Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sdJVDc2mB74&feature=youtu.be


MELANIE CREW - EP REVIEW

Melanie Crew - Until The End EP 
Melanie Crew - Until The End EP

Release Date: Out Now

So much of what I get sent these days is packaged as 'new', 'fresh' or 'emerging' but the truth of the matter is that it has come through a PR Agency or direct from a record label who represent the very fact that these artists have had at least a little investment already. London singer-songwriter Melanie Crew feels much more like the real thing. For example, the opening song of this 6 track collection, 'Hiding Away', is a timid, gently probing song with an acoustic guitar that occasionally falls out of tune and a tambourine that is far too high in the mix - but I love it. There is a purity to Crew's voice and an innocence to her guitar playing that makes the listener feel privileged just be listening in, especially on the child-like waltz of 'Finding A Place'.  

If you fondly remember the delicate vocal of Stina Nordenstam on her hit 'Little Star' and combine that with the imagery of the film Amelie then you will enjoy the St Etienne meets Belle & Sebastian beauty of 'Do You Know?'. 'Take Me Back', on the other hand, channels some Pulp melodies and a long-lost acoustic Dubstar demo as the vocals layer up beautifully over the top of that simple but effective guitar refrain. We're waltzing again on 'With You' with its East European vibe before the EP closes off with 'Waiting For Someone' - the most indie lullaby you'll ever hear that could have been a softly sung ditty from the 1940s which would only be improved by making this a duet with Nick Cave. This is the very epitome of why I write this blog, to connect with music at all levels and to find a talent like Melanie Crew who I can now follow and, hopefully, watch steadily rise to the acclaim she richly deserves. Now pour yourself a drink that makes you feel warm inside, wrap yourself in a blanket and let this EP fill up your emotional cup.

More information: https://www.facebook.com/melaniecrewmusic


Listen/Download Here: http://melaniecrew.bandcamp.com/

ELIZABETH KOSTOVA - SINGLE REVIEW

Elizabeth Kostova - We're Going Down 
Elizabeth Kostova - We're Going Down

Release Date: Out Now

A soulful voice coming out of Norway for your very own ears right now, just in case you ever wanted to try accusing me of being one-dimensional! Elizabeth Kostova has enlisted the help of producer on OD Hunte to give 'We're Going Down' a dark, foreboding sound that is full of Regina Spektor pianos, Muse's epicness and DeadMau5 beats. All this is laid out for Kostova to luxuriously unfurl her velvety smooth voice all over and it's part Jessie J, part Amy Winehouse and part Robyn which puts her up with the mid level pop royalty of the modern age. There is a bluesy, jazzy guitar break which is an unexpected and delightful change of direction but the ending leaves a little to be desired for a tune that promises so much. More to come from this talent, I'd wager.

More information: https://twitter.com/elizkostova 

Thursday, 27 August 2015

AMANDA HICKS - SINGLE REVIEW

Amanda Hicks - You're Not The One 
Amanda Hicks - You're Not The One

Release Date: Out Now

I went to a party once where you had to go as someone famous from your home town. I went as Sir Francis Drake and a friend of mine, from Stevenage, went a Zebedee from the Magic Roundabout. The reason? Because Stevenage has more roundabouts than the average British town. Now, Amanda Hicks is also from Stevenage and may be hoping that future Stevenagians will be dressing up as her at similar parties. 'You're Not The One' is an instantly chilled and soulful slow jam that has a touch of the Joss Stone's about it as Hicks stretches her vocal range atop some soft keys, a shuffling beat and some gentle guitar playing. There's no question that Hicks possesses a velvety, sensual voice that is soothing on the ears but the song is not particularly noteworthy so I don't think anyone will be dressing up as this songstress just yet. There will be an awful lot of people aspiring to sound like Amanda Hicks though and that's not a bad place to start for a singer.


More information: https://www.facebook.com/amandahicksmusic

DR MEAKER - SINGLE REVIEW

Dr Meaker - Good Fight (Circus Records) 
Dr Meaker - Good Fight

Release Date: Out Now

Bristol crew Dr Meaker have been being hotly tipped for a while now and it's about time they started to get the recognition from the masses that the critical acclaim suggests they deserve. New single 'Good Fight' could be the track to make that leap as the sparse piano and dusky, soulful male vocal opens the tune up but you know it's just a prelude before that beat drops in. More soulful than Rudimental and more energetic than Massive Attack with an almost Gospel feel to the vocal this is a big tune for the summer's end as we all pack up and head home from the festival fields ready to hunker down for the winter. Infectious, soulful and with as much substance as it has style, 'Good Fight' is a great tune but whether it's got that key hook is for you to decide, masses. Make the right choice.


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

BREEZE - SINGLE REVIEW

Breeze - Same Wave (Warren Records) 
Breeze - Same Wave

Release Date: Out Now

The warm guitars that open this tune and summery sense you get from the name Breeze are not synonymous with the images that most folk have of this band's home town, Hull. Nothing against the place, I've never been so can't comment, but summery, poppy, indie guitar fun isn't necessarily what I'd have expected. Still, 'Same Wave' fuses the likes of the Pigeon Detectives, the Cure, Swim Deep, the Arcade Fire and the Maccabees to fit in to that raw, edgy indie-pop category quite nicely indeed. There's not much here that makes me particularly excited or energised but this is an entirely acceptable slice of guitar noise and I could think of a lot of worse ways to spend three minutes of my life.

More information: https://www.facebook.com/wearebreeze

Listen/Download Here: http://wearebreeze.bandcamp.com/album/same-wave-2


Watch The Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1vXpWJb8eu4&feature=youtu.be

Monday, 24 August 2015

LANA DEL RAY - SINGLE REVIEW

Lana Del Ray - High By The Beach (Polydor Records) 
Lana Del Ray - High By The Beach

Release Date: Out Now

The enigmatic talent of Lana Del Ray is one I've never quite managed to immerse myself in but, nevertheless, I still get that pang of excitement and intrigue whenever I see her name pop up with a new track. This new single ,'High By The Beach', comes from a starting point of having a beautifully exotic and cinematic piece of artwork which is a part of the single release so often overlooked these days. The music itself is light, airy and sparse but, when played over the video, there is a sense of enormous space and horizon to this tune. This is music to listen to while staring out at an endless sea while the sand works its way in between your toes and the warm breeze teases your hair. The trademark breathy vocals are in full effect while the subdued melodies and subtle beats barely edge the song along. So, I'm still not in love with Lana but she continues to intrigue and inspire which is more than most artists can manage in an entire career.

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


Watch The Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QnxpHIl5Ynw 

CASPER SKULLS - SINGLE REVIEW

Casper Skulls - King Of Gold 
Casper Skulls - King Of Gold

Release Date: Out Now

I have no idea what the name of Ontario band Casper Skulls means but it sounds good when you say it out loud and just has that aura of cool about it that is hard to ignore. Fortunately, their music is similarly enthralling as the sub three minute 'King Of Gold' single shows of beautifully. A dirty, dark, brooding intro that lasts for nearly half the song is all Queens Of The Stoneage meets At The Drive-In before the song embraces the spirit of Mark E Smith and starts singing intensely at you, eyeball to eyeball in a dark room as a single lightbulb swings menacingly from the ceiling revealing a different shadow with each swing. The B-side, 'Because I'm Down', is a more frantic, punk inspired number that has its roots in the disaffected sneer of British punk before the Americans took it on and made it all slick. Casper Skulls are yet another example of the excellent range of musical talents emerging from Ontario and, on this evidence, they have a bright future - albeit one that will be built on layers of macabre darkness and nefarious intent.

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

Listen/Download Here: https://casperskulls.bandcamp.com/releases 

Sunday, 23 August 2015

SOUND OF THE SIRENS - EP REVIEW

Sound Of The Sirens - All We Have Is Time EP 
Sound Of the Sirens - All We Have Is Time

Release Date: Out Now

So I've been championing this Exeter duo for a while now and it finally seems to be getting them somewhere - that's right, I'm taking all the credit for them getting picked up by Radio 2 and generally booked for a whole host of festivals. This latest EP opens with 'The Confession', a song full of agitated passion, uncomfortable energy and a real sense of urgency all wrapped in gorgeous two part vocal harmonies and pin-point guitar playing. 'All For The Best' has a mellower, more traditional folk opening as the intermingling acoustic instrumentation and carefully placed piano notes stir up images of a misty morn in a country orchard as a day breaks but the heartache of the night still lingers in the shadows, refusing to leave completely.

The a cappella opening to 'The Fear' is soon joined by some smooth violin and a subtly strummed rhythm building the tension to go with the sinister, menacing tone that really ought to be sung with the head tipped forward whilst the eyes strain upward to maintain an unsettling level of eye contact. To close matters off, 'Together Alone' is a sweet, cinematic piece of optimism set to a hopeful melody and is a song that takes Sound Of The Sirens to a new level - here we have a band that I no longer liken to other acts but instead I compare others to this talented two-piece which is one of the greatest compliments you can ever pay a musician. Predictably, wonderfully and, perhaps, reassuringly this EP is marvellous in every way so, once again, I've been right all along. So there.

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

Live Dates:

28th August - Watchet Festival, Watchet
5th September - Occombe Beer Festival, Paignton
19th September - Looe Festival, Looe w/Johnny Marr + The Buzzcocks
17th October - The Factory, Barnstaple
3rd December - Hare & Hounds, Birmingham
4th December - O'Neills, Birmingham

5th December - The Crown, Birmingham

THE KING'S PARADE - SINGLE REVIEW

The King's Parade - Bunched Up Letters 
The King's Parade - Bunched Up Letters

Release Date: Out Now

London lads The King's Parade play what they describe as Soul-Blues-Pop and after about 30 seconds of their new single, 'Bunched Up Letters', I'm inclined to agree. There is an incredibly soulful sound to the vocals but the melody is pure blues and could be Otis or BB tugging forcefully at the heart strings. The pop element comes in with a James Morrison vibe but wrapped up in the package of band that are approaching Brother & Bones levels of intensity this is a much more powerful prospect. Roll in an ingenious and touching video animated by Lily Fang and you have one of the purest, most intense and genuinely refreshing new sounds to have arrived in my ears in quite some time. Bravo The King's Parade, bravo indeed.

More information: https://www.facebook.com/thekingsparade

Watch The Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Fqqs3i3OXw

Live Dates:


4th September - EP Launch @ Oslo, Hackney

METHOD MAN FEAT. RAEKWON & INSPECTAH DECK - SINGLE REVIEW

Method Man feat. Raekwon & Inspectah Deck -
The Purple Tape (Tommy Boy Entertainment) 
Method Man - The Purple Tape

Release Date: Out Now

Riding on a wave of Breaking Bad Meth awareness, Method Man is back with a new album, 'The Meth Lab', and a new single ahead of that in shape of 'The Puple Tape'. Featuring the guest talents of Raekwon and Inspectah Deck,  this is a stomping, teeth-baring track with a dirty guitar lick on a loop trying to keep a classical piano melody in check while those beats just pound relentlessly like some kind of factory (or lab) equipment churning out the product. The rhymes come thick and fast without letting up as that industrial beat keeps going and the voices of our three protagonists get closer, more intense and while you want to take the message on board it's a bit like the ranting guy at a party who makes sense but keeps spitting bourbon on your face, such is his passion. Dark, mechanical and unforgiving - just the way I like my women.....wait, no, that's wrong. The tune is awesome but I like my women human. I'm gonna stop now....

More information: https://instagram.com/methodmanofficial


Listen Here: http://pitchfork.com/news/60696-method-man-shares-the-purple-tape-featuring-raekwon-and-inspectah-deck/

THE LOST GECKO - SINGLE REVIEW

The Lost Gecko - Rescued By Waves 
The Lost Gecko - Rescued By Waves

Release Date: Out Now

This acoustic trio from Cork are an intriguing bunch with influences ranging from Pearl Jam, Jimi Hendrix and Metallica to Bon Iver, Sigur Ros and, erm, Elvis Presley. At the same time, they describe their vehicle, The Lost Gecko, as a modern folk trio which tends to drag you in from a point of curiosity if nothing else. Latest single, 'Rescued By Waves', has a gentle acoustic opening with rippling notes soon joined by calming piano chords and then the voice of lead protagonist Malcolm Urquhart. This is filmic, cinematic music with a sweeping chorus that, if sung by the likes of Enrique Iglasias, would be done in a white shirt and filmed from a drone camera swirling around about 6 feet above the impassioned singer. As it is, this doesn't feel particularly folky but more like a slightly more organic and unsanitised version of a pop power ballad that doesn't really hit you in the feels as much you would hope for. Close but no cigar, then.


More information: http://www.thelostgecko.com/ 

DIRTY THRILLS - EP REVIEW

Dirty Thrills - Sweetheart Of The Slums EP 
Dirty Thrills - Sweetheart Of The Slums EP

Release Date: Out Now

If you met these guys on a film set you'd assume they were taking a break from playing the arch nemeses of the Darkness in some sort of Victoriana themed rock'n'roll face off movie with plenty of St Trinians style girls in school uniform running around. In real life, Dirty Thrills are a four piece from London town with barely a year under their belts as a band but a serious sense of mischief and determination that most bands can only dream of. New EP, 'Sweetheart Of The Slums', kicks off (in every sense) with 'Lettebomb' and immediately you get the unwavering sense that these guys are here to have their say. Sleazy, bluesy, Buckcherry style guitars mix with Black Keys vocals and a grinding driving rhythm section to create a perfect rock'n'roll ditty to get hot and sweaty to.

'Feelin'' has a chugging vibe to it with a snaking, hypnotic guitar riff that snakes in to your ear like the song of a sensuous siren only for front man Louis James to scream his Steven Tyler aping vocal over the team and keep you on the straight and narrow. The final official track on this collection is a slower, more deliberate blues rock track, 'Hourglass', that snarls, growls and generally howls through the verses before the chorus sings out with an almost gospel-like sense of affirmation to it. Luckily for us, there is a bonus track in the shape of a live version of 'No Resolve' from Lechiade Festival which just shows that these guys can cut it live and have the rock'n'roll chops to pull this kind of thing off outside the studio. These guys channel some of my favourite bands - Reef, Brother & Bones, Lynyrd Skynyrd, the Black Keys - and add a slightly more sexual, sleazy feel which can only be a good thing, right? I mean, what can't be improved by a little sexing up around the edges?

More information: https://www.facebook.com/DirtyThrills

Live Dates:

10th September - The Barfly, London w/Leogun
10th October - The Old Moot House, London
14th November - The Rolleston Arms, Swindon

6th December - Planet Rock Stock, Porthcawl

UNITED HIGHS - SINGLE REVIEW

United Highs - Talk About Us 
United Highs feat. Abby Miles - Talk About Us

Release Date: Out Now

There is definitely something bubbling away down in Falmouth, one of the most unlikely places that you'd ever find a scene forming, but here we have another band emerging from the Cornish town with something to shout about. Quartet United Highs are unleashing new single 'Talk About Us' with a little help from guest vocalist Abby Miles and it's a bit of rock beast by all accounts. The moody, thudding drums are dripping in 80s hair metal influences and then when those dual vocals hit in the chorus this could LA in 1986 with more leather trousers, back combed hair and big hooped earrings than you could shake a bootlegged cassette tape at. If I heard this on a 'Best 80s Rock Anthems' album I would be more than happy with it's place in amongst Aerosmith, Bon Jovi and Pat Benatar tunes. In terms of originality there isn't much to go on here but if you're looking for a big, powerful rock ballad to belt out while you're driving home in the dark then this is the one for you.

More information: http://www.unitedhighs.co.uk/

Live Dates:

29th August - The Prince Of Wales, Falmouth

4th December - The Prince Of Wales, Falmouth

Wednesday, 19 August 2015

LOST DAWN - SINGLE REVIEW

Lost Dawn - Electrify (Easy Action) 
Lost Dawn - Electrify

Release Date: Out Now

Cornish lotharios Lost Dawn are back with a new single and a select few dates in their home county over the summer. 'Electrify' is a digital only release to whet our appetites and moisten our gussets as the summer reaches its soggy climax. Scuzzy, fuzzy guitars stumble around a house party fuelled by thudding drums and a sense of mischief that is infectious. Elements of indie, glam, punk-pop and a sense of the psychedelic all intertwine wonderfully and it's all topped off with a lo-fi, bonkers video that looks as though it was as much fun to make as it is to watch. This isn't the best track these guys have ever released but it's fun, infectious and just a precursor to bigger things to come in the Autumn. Much bigger things.

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

Listen Here: https://soundcloud.com/thisislostdawn/electrify-1

Watch The Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ov_HIraxUlc

Live Dates:

30th August - In The City Festival, Truro
18th September - Looe Festival, Looe

30th October - Princess Pavilion, Falmouth

Tuesday, 18 August 2015

SEAWAVES - SINGLE REVIEW

Seawaves - With Or Without You 
Seawaves - With Or Without You

Release Date: Out Now

U2 were a gateway band for me that took me from borrowing library tapes of the Pet Shop Boys to being genuinely interested in something more meaty, more passionate. I've moved on since then but those songs of Zooropa and everything that preceded it will always have a special place in my heart. So, this cover of 'With Or Without You' is an intriguing prospect with its blissed out, dubby feel and moody, electro-mod vocals that works in terms of retaining the spirit of hope and desperation of the original song. What this version doesn't achieve, however, is the full on, stadium filling, sweeping, soaring swell of emotion that this song had in its original format. That said, for a song allegedly about Heroine abuse, perhaps a more down tempo approach is more appropriate. It's not every day you hear a truly original cover though and certainly not one that brings U2 in to a credible market for the first time in over a decade.


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

Sunday, 16 August 2015

JERRY WILLIAMS - SINGLE REVIEW

Jerry Williams - Cold Beer 
Jerry Williams - Cold Beer

Release Date: 21st August 2015

For a variety of reasons, I haven't had a drop of alcohol since May and, worryingly, I'm starting to get twitchy at the mere mention of the substance. So, Portsmouth songstress Jerry Williams' new single 'Cold Beer' has brought me out in full on convulsions before I've even pressed play. The song itself is a poppy, sugary sweet tune with a tight guitar melody and Williams' voice is like a smooth caramel layer atop the crunchy, Mark Ronson-esque beats. To hear this melody you'd expect to see some moody, edgy Hoxtonite with improbably hair but from the video our heroine appears to be a down-to-earth, girl-next-door type with a sense of humour and a friend with some serious grooming issues. This is one of those songs that could hit big if it's played enough during a few hot summer days but I suspect there's more to come from this lady so pour yourself a cold one enjoy this one while it lasts.

More information: https://www.facebook.com/Jerrywilliamsmusic


Watch The Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JQ5ZTboTP8Y 

THE FRATELLIS - SINGLE REVIEW

The Fratellis - Baby Don't You Lie To Me (Cooking Vinyl) 
The Fratellis -  Baby Don't You Lie To Me

Release Date: Out Now

Ah, The Fratellis. Long standing favourites of the football highlights montage and mid priced European car advert. It's been a while but the trio are back with their brand of perky, dirty indie-pop-rock in the form of new single 'Baby Don't You Lie To Me' . Essentially, this is somewhere between early Supergrass, the Datsuns and the Zutons with a suitably chunky bass line and simple but effective pounding drums. There's a bit of Slade and Mud in there as well and really these guys are just continuing a long tradition of uncomplicated but fun guitar based music and for that, if nothing else, we should be glad they are back. And they can't even be doing it for the money as those royalty cheques must be rolling in.

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

Watch The Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DprUg4PucMM

Live Dates:

21st August - King Tut's Wah Wah Hut, Glasgow
16th September - The Danforth Music Hall, Toronto
18th September - Webster Hall, New York w/Grizfolk + Mark Lesseraux
19th September - Paradise Rock Club, Boston
22nd September - TLA, Philadelphia
25th September - Varsity Theater, Minneapolis
30th September - The Commodore Ballroom, Vancouver
1st October - Neptune Theatre, Seattle
6th October - House Of Blues, San Diego w/Grizfolk

8th October - The Wiltern, Los Angeles w/Grizfolk

THE PINSTRIPE PIGEON BAND - SINGLE REVIEW

The Pinstripe Pigeon Band - Never Be Apart 
The Pinstripe Pigeon Band - Never Be Apart

Release Date: Out Now

I don't get enough music from Preston these days so it was a treat to get the new single from 6 piece The Pinstripe Pigeon Band (awful name, by the way). The press bumph describes this new single as sounding like St Etienne and I get where they're coming from with that but for me 'Never Be Apart' has more of the Jess Glynn or Clean Bandit about it. A jerky, dubby rhythm is coupled with some key stabs and twitchy guitar to provide a kind of Massive Attack backdrop for Kirsty Harvey's superbly soulful voice to wash over like crystal clear waters on clean, golden sands. This is a song for the end of summer, one last walk on the beach with your holiday romance or that tear soaked coach trip back to Preston after a week in Camber Sands.

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


Tuesday, 4 August 2015

CAVE MOUTH - SINGLE REVIEW

Cave Mouth - Deep Water 
Cave Mouth - Deep Water

Release Date: 19th August 2015

I love these guys. Just getting that out there straight away. The Exmoor quartet have created a beautifully crafted niche for themselves which is just at the back of a dark, whisky soaked bar behind the White Stripes with that Jazz saxophone leaking through the walls. New single 'Deep Water' is a truly muddy, dirty blues stomp with a rattling acoustic guitar battling with a groove that Beck or Eels would be glad to have. Then there's the dual male and female vocals that are, in turn, downright gravelly and soulfully soaring. Throw in some saxophone, an instrument that doesn't always work but definitely does in this instance, and you've got an engagingly original sound that you can dance to and that gets better with each listen. Baby, if this is 'Deep Water' then I'm all for drowning so don't pull me out...

More information: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Cave-Mouth/200251623444291?sk=info&tab=page_info

Live Dates:

8th August - Sandford Rockes Festival
19th September - EP Launch @ BBC Introducing Devon

17th October - Oxjam, Exeter

FOREVER STILL - SINGLE REVIEW

Forever Still - Awake The Fire 
Forever Still - Awake The Fire

Release Date: Out Now

Some songs make you want to dance, some songs make you want have sex, some songs make you want to scream and some songs make you want to cry. This song, the new single from Danish rockers Forever Still, makes me want to drive a cool car in to the sunset whilst giving the world I'm leaving behind the finger. 'Awake The Fire' is a relentless, high energy and unapologetic piece of rock'n'roll excess all topped off with the powerfully slick vocals of frontwoman Maja. I would say this is a guilty pleasure but I'm enjoying too much to feel any guilt so I'll just call it a few minutes of pure hedonism with swirling guitars, sledgehammer drums and a grinding bass line that don't give your senses a break. From the looks of the video they put a lot of energy in to their performances as well so, y'know, get down the front and worship at the altar of Forever Still in the church of Rock.

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

Watch The Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kswE3645ieQ

Live Dates: 

25th October - Black Mass Festival, Sheffield

20th November - Rock At Sea Hardrock, Stockholm

COAST TO COAST - SINGLE REVIEW

Coast To Coast - Empty 
Coast To Coast - Empty

Release Date: Out Now

Easycore. Easycore. It's a new one on me, as far as genres go, but when it's coupled with pop-punk I can kinda see what these guys are going for. Coast To Coast are a sextet (no sniggering, it's a real word) from the wilds of Nagoya in Japan where Easycore is surely all the rage. 'Empty' is the new single from these chaps and it is certainly a powerful slice guitar driven alt-pop with the dual vocals of Matty and Brent giving the sound another layer altogether. This is a real gang mentality tune with each 'gang member' adding their own layer and element of personality to the song as choppy guitars collide with pounding guitars and a real sense of purpose. This isn't the most original or catchy song I've heard this year but it sure is powerful and I can only  imagine these guys perform some serious force when they are all crammed on to a stage together.

More information: https://www.facebook.com/coasttocoastjpn

Watch The Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6_zxzEPBxoY&feature=youtu.be

Live Dates:

5th September - Reflect Studio, Nagoya
19th September - Shibuya The Game, Tokyo
20th September - Sakae Party'z, Nagoya
24th September - Imaike 3-Star, Nagoya

26th September - WOW!, Fukuoka 

SINEAD O'CONNOR - SINGLE REVIEW

Sinead O'Connor - The Foggy Dew (Nettwork Records) 
Sinead O'Connor - The Foggy Dew

Release Date: 5th August 2015

As a youngster I always rejected history as a subject, largely in rebellion against my father's love of the subject and the fact that he taught it at school. One area that did often pique my interest, however, was Irish history so it was a fine day indeed when I recently got to go on a tour of key sites of the Easter Rising in Dublin with my dad finally getting to see the bricks and mortar that witnessed so much of what he had taught for so long. Conversely, I've always had a lot of respect for Sinead O'Connor and her unswayable single mindedness in whatever she does but have never owned a single song of hers. And so, we come to 'The Foggy Dew', the new single from Sinead O'Connor written about and in tribute to Jeremiah O'Donovan Rossa, a renowned leader of the Fenian movement whose funeral is being re-enacted in 2015, 100 years after he died. The single itself is unmistakably O'Connor with power and fragility in equal measure as one of the most recognisable voices of all time moves smoothly through the gears like a rousing battle cry on a worryingly still morning. There is a striking blend of tradition and modern in the music, one that has been so successfully used by the likes of Florence + The Machine more recently, and the journey the song takes moves from threatening aggression to calm resolve in under three minutes. Sure, this isn't going to be an A-list radio hit but, like everything she's done, Sinead O'Connor has a purpose, a message behind this and I don't think shifting units has ever been a priority which is just as it should be.


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

WILLO WONDER - SINGLE REVIEW

Willo Wonder - Find Yourself 
Willo Wonder - Find Yourself

Release Date: Out Now

London based Welsh ex-pat Willo Wonder has a new single for our consideration and it could be set to be an empowering, self-worth boosting anthem for the disaffected pockets of society. 'Find Yourself' treads that fine-line between 80s Motown influenced pop and head-back power balladry (yeah, that line) and not only does it hold its balance, it also holds its head up high throughout. Wonder's voice is a masterwork in defiant pop androgyny and, as the song builds to an arms-in-the-air crescendo, you can easily imagine a Kelly Clarkson, Will Young or X-Factor runner up belting this out to an adoring audience (note, I say runner up as they are usually the better artists). Willo Wonder is one of those artists that is new on the scene and currently sits at a cross roads of performer, writer, producer or, let's face it, all of the above.  And probably fashion muse at some point as well.


More information: https://www.facebook.com/WilloWonder