Saturday, 26 October 2019

Listen! - Void Vertex - Concrete







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Watch! - Fader - Always Suited Blue







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Thursday, 24 October 2019

Live Review - Creep Show + Kincaid feat Blancmange





Creep Show + Kincaid feat Blancmange

The Trade Club, Hebden Bridge

11 October 2019


There was something very amusing about a twenty-four year old male telling his Dad to hurry up as the later chatted to fans outside the bar area of the Trades Club.  The young man was Joe Arthur (aka Kincaid), his father Neil of Blancmange. 

Up three flight of creaky stairs at the unassuming building on Holme Street is a room appearing like a cross between a car workshop and a church chapel, packed to the rafters with a sell-out crowd.  There is an incredible feeling of anticipation and excitement as cask ales walk freely with their accompanied owners of all ages in the darkened room headed by a stage which appears to contain nothing more than a table and a raft of cables and wires.

Joe and a Neil Arthur take to the stage, dressed head to toe in black and momentarily seem to adjust and twiddle knobs before the opening bars of the new Kincaid single Late For Sum, begin to hit the air.  The young, fresh face on the underground club scene has been remixing sounds for a plethora of artists of late and the opportunity to take up a support slot to Creep Show is a well-timed move.

There’s a hard edge to the tracks which also contain previous single Big Fat Head (with all vocals performed by a bespectacled Neil), think somewhere between Orbital and Underworld and with a deep bass undertone and you won’t be far wrong.  Glances to each other’s actions are commonplace as the LED lights flash on their torsos and in the background.  It’s like Blancmange with a harder, clinical edge or, maybe it’s just the sound of Kincaid, who really knows?



Nods of approval are abound as the Blancmange classic, Feel Me becomes recognisable.  It suits the updated sound and seems the natural progression from Happy Families to Happy Families Too to where it is now.  Similarly, with two more Blancmange tunes – What’s The Time? and I Smashed Your Phone - which are also performed, working superbly well with the new arrangements and sound.   Needless to say that they leave the stage to rapturous applause which could fully justify an encore, instead father and son look towards each other and embrace in a huge hug.  It then becomes heartfelt moment for everyone and the prospect of more collaborations is indeed exciting.

The mini album, Late For Sum is available here.

Creep Show are something of an enigma.  American alternative rocker John Grant teamed up with Wrangler who in turn comprise of Stephen Mallinder (Cabaret Voltaire), Benge (Blancmange, Fader, John Foxx) and Phil Winter (Tunng) make for an interesting prospect and deliver nothing less than a riveting set.

Opening with the title track from their debut album Mr Dynamite, it’s clear that this isn’t going to be any ordinary performance.  Grant’s bluesy voice is a complete contrast to the off-the-wall backing and it seems to work perfectly.  Obviously, there are hints of Cabaret Voltaire too, more so when Mallinder adds his own vocals, and the resulting set is positively perfect.  Shouts of approval from certain quarters of the audience amuse the band and result in reciprocated humour.

Benge stands to the right of Mallinder and provides percussion for the evening, his fingerless leather gloves protecting his hands which must take a pounding as his thrashes out some superb drum patterns and Winter stand to the left of Grant almost hiding under a jacket and baseball cap making him all but invisible though clearly busy on more of the musical accompaniment.  It will doubtless be said again  but, Creep Show look like some modern day bastard sons of Kraftwerk, stood behind laptops and banks of cabling, they are often still (with the exception of Benge) and clearly concentrating on their work.  Less conventional than the German pioneers, Creep Show blend electro with weird (see Pink Squirrel or Tokyo Metro) to a perfect end result.  The performance is phenomenal.

Vocals are shared, maybe unequally, between Grant and Mallinder and the juxtaposition between the two adds another dimension to the performance.  Grant’s vocals on the superb Safe And Sound are nothing short of incredible through an hour long set that is faultless and clearly one of the finest gigs many of the audience have seen in a long time.  Dancing (of sorts), foot tapping and general bodily engagement can be seen everywhere.

Inevitably, there is an encore, just one song but, when it becomes apparent that it is a version of Cabaret Voltaire’s Sensoria from 1984s Micro-Phonies, the place goes wild.  Mallinder relishes every second and on its closing, the band leave the stage to rapturous applause.  Creep Show are superb both live and on recording and, something not to be missed.


Kincaid/Blancmange photo by Terry Tyldesley.  Creep Show photo by Paul Clarke.




Creep Show
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Kincaid
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Blancmange
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Published on Louder Than War 19/10/19 - here









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Listen! - Kincaid - Love Of An Automaton







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Watch! - Underworld - S T A R (#DRIFT Ep.5 Pt.6)







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Monday, 21 October 2019

Review - Deux Furieuses – My War Is Your War







Deux Furieuses – My War Is Your War (Xtra Mile Recordings)

LP / CD / DL

18 October 2019


Ferocious punk duo Deux Furieuses release their long awaited second album. 

There can really be only one way to follow up a remarkable debut album and that is to repeat the feat with the second.  Deux Furieuses stunned the music fraternity in 2016 with their self-released long player Tracks Of Wire and now Ros Cairney and Vas Antoniadou return where they left off, powering their way through eleven all new tracks which seem set to give them the huge recognition they deserve.

Newly signed to Xtra Mile Recordings, who also boast the likes of Frank Turner, Get Cape Wear Cape Fly and Beans On Toast within their roster, Deux Furieuses once more enlist the talents of producer Rob Ellis (PJ Harvey, Placebo, Scott Walker) and mix engineer Mark Freegard (New Model Army, Manic Street Preachers) who continue to breed a familiarity with the duo’s style and move things up a notch.

Album opener and lead track, Year Of Rage was written leading into the Votes For Women centenary and pays homage to the #MeToo movement which also features in the backing vocals.  A rousing call to arms, it spits and splutters from the opening bars and shows the confident intent that the rest of the album is to display as it solidly struts and swaggers with a highly memorable chorus and high powered instrumentation, at times belying the fact that there are only two members to the group.

This new album adds an angrier, darker sound to that of Tracks Of War, the catchy choruses are still there but there’s now an edginess and almost risk taken approach.  Civilians tackles the recent phenomena of fake news, political denial and lies absolving themselves from the obvious truth in a world becoming more and more focused on tabloid and social media news.

The title track is moody and emotive, almost empty with a simple percussive loop, a message and a statement, a wonderful interlude before the biting real life experience of Song For Kat which simply and brutally confronts real life experience of a friends suicide.

Deux Furieuses are exciting of that there is no doubt.  Thorns kicks and roars, Let Them Burn unleashes anger at the horror of Grenfell and, Wired To Hate responds to the London Bridge knife attacks on Borough Market with a ruthless sincerity.  There’s a reason that their debut album was so critically acclaimed and all those justifications are repeated with My War Is Your War.  The road to success may be shorter than they think.









Published on Louder Than War 10/10/19 - here




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Saturday, 19 October 2019

Thursday, 10 October 2019

Watch! - Creep Show - Mr Dynamite







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Listen! - Two Meters - The Nightmare







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Listen! - Assassin Of Sound - Malus Domestica (Full Fruit Sunny Day)







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Watch! - Cerrone - The Impact







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Sunday, 6 October 2019