Monday, 30 April 2018

Albums of the Month - February 2018


Ben Mason – Dogs N Yaaa



Read our review here.


🔺🔻🔺🔻🔺🔻🔺🔻


Cahn Ingold Prelog - Tolerance



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Album of the Month - January 2018


Dirtmusic – Bu Bir Ruya




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Sunday, 29 April 2018

Review - LIINES - Stop Start






LIINES - Stop Start (Reckless Yes)

LP / DL

4 May 2018

9 / 10



Review by Amy.


Manchester trio LIINES have gradually built momentum releasing several tracks since their debut single two years ago making the release of their debut album 'Stop-Start' a long time coming.  The wait was worth it. 

From the outset 'Stop-Start' grabs the listener  by the scruff of the neck  and demands attention, there's no hanging about while they slowly introduce you to their work, no, it starts like a pistol and doesn't let up. At all. Everything is immediate, don't even bother trying to catch a breath during this aural assault as it'll be snatched away from you every time.

Comparisons to Sleater-Kinney are obvious but there are other references that can be made;  Savages, Gang of Four and even PJ Harvey  in places.  I will, however,  admit that  'Stop-Start' is  reminiscent of SK's debut  at times, and Zoe's vocals are akin to Corin's in the sense that they are urgent and demand you listen to what she's saying, but for me that's where the similarities end...yes they are a 'female' trio BUT that doesn't (and shouldn't) define them or the music they play - this band are strong enough to standalone from past influences and probably become an influence themselves.  

The thing I love most about this album is how raw and abrasive it sounds.  One thing LIINES  can't be accused of is pretending to be something they're not -  a refreshing break from all the overly polished albums of late.  Everything about this feels authentic, there's no hiding behind production or layers to build the music up, this is how they sound, like it or don't - that's your choice, but this is an honest reflection  of a band doing what they do best.  The musicianship and style of playing has created this beast of an album that pounds relentlessly  - Leila's drums are just what the songs require - nothing overly complicated  but are enough to  make your bones rattle,  Steph's bass is as rugged and muscular as they come, you can hear every ounce of energy going into hitting each note, and as if all of that wasn't enough,  Zoe's acidic guitar work gnaws away over the top  - simple and minimalist but very effective, there's no playing for the sake of filling a gap, every bit is structured and deliberate.

Highlights from the album include, well, every track really, though  'Find Something'  will be stuck in your head for days.   'Stop-Start' is a very solid album which I can only imagine sounds even better live - I'll be keeping tabs on this band and I strongly suggest you do too. I guess all that's left for me to say is go and buy this album on May 4th!








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Published on Louder Than War 03/05/18 - here









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Saturday, 28 April 2018

Wednesday, 25 April 2018

Listen! - Ghost Signs - Before This All Comes Down






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Listen! - Todd Snow - Blue Moon






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Listen! - Horsetail - Under Heaven





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Tuesday, 24 April 2018

Review - Sheer Zed – Do Not Submit To The Control Claw







Sheer Zed – Do Not Submit To The Control Claw

DL

27 April 2018

9 / 10


Experimental, electronic musician releases his new album.  

Make no mistake, this is a remarkable album.  This is an album that is steeped in such incredible feeling and passion that it should leave an indelible mark on everyone that takes time to listen to it.  Newport born, Sheer Zed has come up trumps with Do Not Submit To The Control Claw and, if either ambient, experimental, drone, meditative or trance are your bag then this is an album that you will adore.

Opening with the title track, the album (that feels like it has been recorded in a huge echoing warehouse) begins on subtle, calming tones for over two minutes as a gorgeous, floating beginning eases the listener in.  Soon after, sounds of trance start to emerge with percussion patter and potentially screaming interludes.  It marks the entrance of a giant being, undoubtedly the Control Claw, as it struts its influence over everything in its path.  As gently as it came, it then fades away.

Spirit Sensei’s Guiding Light rattles the cage somewhat, from the opening bass gurgle to the paced percussion which echoes wonderfully against the eclectic background.  It stomps and marks its ground as the Claw establishes the pecking order against its prey.  It breathes and paces its territory with confident assurance. 

The percussion led Magick Square Defense adds an almost far-Eastern feel and provided an exciting taster when the album was announced.  It loops over several sounds and the constant reverb, which is maintained throughout the album, adds suspense and intrigue.  It’s certainly not an album for the fainthearted as it effortlessly moves from calm to energy at the drop of a hat.  The Hypnogogic Encryption Of Star Systems is incredible over eleven minutes as it hypnotises and thrills.  A mid-section of increased pace sets the heart pounding before it ceases its tease and relaxes once more.

Deus Ex Machina (For DIL23) sounds like an engine steam room of massive proportion perhaps fuelling the Claw for one last assault and Slowly Drifting Into Geometric Space sees a marathon hibernation of enthralling ambience before the beast finally dies on Destruction Of The Control Claw.
Call this a concept album, call it experimentalism, call it whatever you will.  One thing that it will certainly be called is outstanding.


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Published on Louder Than War 19/04/18 - here









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Review - The Bordellos - Debt Sounds








The Bordellos – Debt Sounds (Small Bear Records)

CD / DL

Out Now

8 / 10


John Peel would have loved The Bordellos.  He would have loved their unwillingness to confirm, he would have loved their brutal honesty.  He would possibly have repeat played them like Teenage Kicks or, pulled over into a layby to sob in happiness as he did with Pearly Dewdrops’ Drops.  He would invite them to the studio to record session upon session and he would sit next to John Walters aurally orgasming at their sound. 

So what is so special about the The Bordellos?  In reality there is often nothing special and that is probably their strong point, they stand out because they are not shiny, clinical or crystal clear.  They stand out because they are what they are (and what they are needs no excuses).  They use emotion and feeling, and that is surely what music is all about. 

There are aggressive melodies fighting to break free from every track and some may say that they’re anti-music, others echoes of punk – they may be right, they may be wrong – and that is the real beauty of The Bordellos with no-one knowing what they are or what they want to be.  They evoke memories of adolescence and growing up into adulthood, wanting to play in a band and make music at any cost as long as the passion and drive is there.

You might not hear their influences: The Shangri-Las, Scott Walker, Julian Cope et all, but in the same way that The Beach Boys pushed boundaries on Pet Sounds, this tribute of sorts sees how much four lads from St Helens can do the same thing from the other end of the scale.  The Bordellos make music like there’s no tomorrow, song after song after song, always something different around the corner.

There were certain criteria that frontman Brian Bordello gave the band, all vocals being first take, the songs were freshly written and never heard by the band before and, tracks completed every Friday night for ten weeks until the album was ‘finished’.  There is tape hiss, there are fumbled fondles, there are tales of romantic failure and observations as to the fate of Rolf Harris many years before recent revelations.

From the feedback induced, subtle yet disturbing sounding Fading Honey to I May Be Reborn which borders on beautiful and an almost perfectly crafted song, and the backbiting Dead Friend Don’t Leave Me Hanging with its attack on the inevitable fall of the music industry, Debt Sounds is a quite remarkable collection.  It’s about you, me and everyone.





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Published on Fortitude 18/04/18 - here









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Saturday, 21 April 2018

Thursday, 19 April 2018

Sunday, 15 April 2018

Listen! - Dementio13 - 78









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Listen! - District Repair Depot - Barry Jones










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Listen! - Robert Görl - Part 1 (Vince Clarke Remix)









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Watch! - MUGWUMP - No Trepidation









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