PSYCHIC VOID.

14 09 2020

Some spooky and loud shit for you- Psychic Void. Excellent name for a band, even better music. I love them. They are so loud to the point where it would make someone feel uncomfortable, and I LOVE that about them. There are no romantic tunes here or pitch perfect notes. Far from it. It’s a shouty, chaotic brawl and it’s divine. It’s probably what my version of Heaven sounds like. Oh Canada, you’ve done it again with another exceptional band!

They’ve put a few records out already, so I’m just going to focus on the reasons as to why I love them and why playing them loud enough to cause your ears to probably bleed is so satisfying.

Songs like Morning Anxiety, Day Dreamer and Skeleton Paradise are just INSANE. They remind me of our lovely Newcastle lads, Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs. There’s this Stoner Rock feel that makes you feel like you’ve slipped down a Melvins rabbit hole and you then get smacked in the face so HARD that you are catapulted into this pit of sleaze, sweat and gloriously loud songs. The songs aren’t for the those who like to feel clean and pure. They are for those who aren’t afraid of being an absolute mess. If you want a band that make you feel like you are being possessed, then chewed up and spat out by the Devil- then you will LOVE Psychic Void.

I think Terminal Vacation is their first record, and my god it is so good. It’s one of those records that makes you feel a bit uneasy and afraid to sleep without the light on, but don’t let that put you off! These songs probably were intended to scare you shitless. Stick their songs in a good Horror film, and you’ll get what I mean. Beautifully terrifying in all the right places.

A couple of years ago they released Gutter Butter which is the calmest they have sound, but it is still a powerful piece of art that needs to be blasted out as loud as possible. This band are just incredible. Last year they released the mind-blowing Skeleton Paradise. This is something else. It’s like Nine Inch Nails meets Sleep mixed with Japan’s finest BORIS. It’s all over the place in the best way possible, and is unlike what you’ve heard before. It’s such a remarkable record that again, should hopefully terrify you. These 8 songs are just out of this world and made to be played to the point where your street starts to shake.

You cannot keep still listening to this band at all. I’d imagine that their live shows are an experience too- can you imagine hearing songs like Dirty Hands and Knelt live? It’d be like every part of you finally came alive and you carry that with you for the rest of time; comparing everything to the moment you saw the band live. There is something really incredible about Psychic Void, and it’s that something you seek out in bands that eventually become everything to you. You cling to these songs with all you have.

The energy they have is ridiculous; it’s really unlike anything else around. They’ve just got this brilliant and effortlessly slick sound. Jesse has this growl to his voice that makes you wonder how he can still sing like this! How has he not damaged himself yet? The screams on Denim Daddy will send you into a frenzy. The whole second record is like the obnoxious and snotty sibling to their debut. It’s perfect.

Psychic Void make songs that will make you feel like you’ve had an electric shock to the heart. They will jolt you, bruise you, batter you and make you feel like nothing else will ever top this feeling. You’ll really get this from the song Alley Dweller, which could be one of their greatest songs. But let’s be honest, this band do NOT have any bad songs at all. They are consistently great and that’s why that, although they have perfect this sound, they have made something of their own.

I’m obsessed with what I’ve heard, and now I want more.

My lunch break is over, now I need to try be a little calm for the next few hours!

Check out their songs here: https://psychicvoid.bandcamp.com/





EX-WHITE: Stalker.

12 09 2020

You know when you want to listen to something that’s so loud and obnoxious, then you realise it’s pretty late so you better keep quiet? So your only solution is to play it through your headphones and basically deafen yourself? That’s pretty much what’s happened with the new Ex-White record. It’s a proper unapologetically loud and raw record. The snarly sounds will make you want to trash a room or 3, and you’ll probably collapse in the midst of euphoria, then gently fall into the chaos that will take over.

I know nothing at all about Ex-White but I can tell you this, I know that their new record is a noisy and sleazy treat for the ears. There is something about German lo-fi Garage Rock that just sounds totally different to anything else you can get your hands on, and Ex-White have created something really great on this record. There’s a familiar sound on this record- meaning there’s a solid amount of reverb, the vocals are beautifully chaotic and the production is so tight! It’s the kind of record you find yourself going back to, and finding different things to love about every song with each listen. I know it is such a cliche thing to say, but this record fully backs that up.

These 12 songs will make you move, and it’s best enjoyed at 11pm on a Saturday in your bedroom through headphones. Like I am doing right now. There is so much going on, it’s like listening to someone inhale a shit load of sugar and have this huge sugar rush with no hints of coming down. It’s hyperactive and all over the place. There is a taste of calm moments on Rhythm Is A Cancer, but for the most part this is a hyperactive piece of art, that’s a masterpiece in its own beautiful way.

If like me you’ve never listened to Ex-White before, then this is the perfect record to start with. Stalker is such a fantastic listen and the songs will make you feel like you’re at some secret show with bodies cramped in a small space, sacrificing themselves just to live in the moment of an Ex-White show. Only a couple of songs tip the 3 minute mark, and of course you keep wanting more- that’s natural when you hear something this great. At times this record reminds me of VIRALS, TV Crime and The Cavemen. There’s this huge energy to the record that makes you yearn for live shows. In time…in time. We have to cling on to that to keep ourselves sane. But this record is most certainly one that has the power to cause chaos in a live capacity. There’s this beautiful feeling to this record that just makes you forget all your troubles; during these 12 songs nothing matters and sometimes, you need that. Actually, all of the time.

Bikes and Nightfall are 2 of my favourites right now, but with a record like this you definitely cannot have solid favourites. It’s just such a wonderful record, and although it will have you missing live shows, you’ll also fall in love with your new favourite band. The songs on this record are bold and like a smack to the face. They are hard-hitting and rebellious. So if you’re wanting something to awaken your soul and put some life into you- get hold of this record.

High Society Punk and Love Battle will have you moving your body around in no time. It is such a joy to listen to, and you cannot help but play it loud to the point where you’re probably damaging your hearing slightly. It’s alright- get your kicks when and where you can!

Stalker is out right now!





THE YOU GO GIRLS: Teeth.

29 08 2020

By now it is fairly clear that Kafadan Kontak Records keep on putting out exceptional records by bands that will just blow your mind so brutally and so beautifully. The You Go Girls are another band that KKR have taken on. If you’re looking for something to free your mind, then Teeth is the perfect record to do it to.

Teeth is a hyperactive record from start to finish! Every song is a delight for the ears, a proper Garage Rock treat for you. Every song will make you want to move and it’ll make you think you’ve supped 6 beers,and can’t stand up without even touching a drop. It’s a proper rowdy record and you feel it right in your bones.

These 9 blistering songs never hit the 3 minute  (apart from the closer, Red Planet which hits around the 6 minute mark)they have that fast-paced sound us Punks love so much, and the way they just ruin your hearing with the sheer loudness is insane. You know when you just hear something so loud and powerful, and you start questioning what the fuck you did before you heard this record? That’s how I feel about The You Go Girls.

The record opens with Eaten Alive which sounds like The Doors on the strongest acid imaginable- even the Lizard King himself couldn’t handle this one. There’s a real 60s Psychedelic feel to this record, especially on Eaten Alive. It’s spooky, creepy and it sounds like an anthem for a cult that is trying to lure you in. Hey, if they make music like this then I think a fair amount of us would sign up!

Teeth is a wild record, and it has this beautiful energy to it that you just can’t get enough of. You want to keep it on repeat, you want the band to just keep on putting record after record out. I have no idea how long this band has been going or how many records they have put out, but trust me, this is their best work and most certainly one of the best records KKR have put out.

It’s everything you could possibly want from a gnarly Rock band who have all this energy that they just need to unleash. They are definitely a band we all need to see live- can you imagine how wild their shows are?! You can just imagine it now- a venue that has questionable liquids on the floor so your shoes stick, covered in sweat and warm beer, the band diving into the crowd trying to keep themselves upright and everyone just having the best time. I miss gigs so much, and bands like The You Go Girls make me miss it way more than I anticipated. However, the record does make you feel like you are at one of their shows so if you have the same hankering as me for a gig, then just close your eyes and play Teeth super loud and go nuts!

The You Go Girls cannot be tamed. Their sound cannot be defined. Their songs are drunken anthems to lose yourself in. They are just a really exciting band, and Teeth is by far one of the most energetic and wild records I’ve heard in a while. Take songs like Street Party and Skeleton Baby- they are just off the wall. This isn’t a band who care for making music to please anyone, you can tell they do it to release this pent up energy they have and in turn, they help the listener do the same. That’s why it works and that is why they sound so good!

Take joy wherever you can. Take it from this record. Take it from this band. Let yourself go as wild as possible!





MAD DADDY.

24 08 2020

A few weeks or so I wrote about a band from the Isle of Man called Voodoo Bandits. As I am missing home, my family and friends- I thought I’d make myself even more homesick by writing about THE coolest band on the Isle of Man. They’re called Mad Daddy. Fun fact- the singer is the brother of my best pal’s partner. Small world? Oh you have no idea!

In May, Mad Daddy released their 3rd EP. I was going to just focus on that, but when the music is this good you cannot ignore the greatness at all. If you’re looking for some straight up Rock’n’Roll with that filthy style that The Cramps had- then you’re going to love Mad Daddy. There aren’t many bands around that sound like this now- a lot have come and gone. Left their mark and that’s it. With Mad Daddy, you can hear something else. You feel like you’re in Nashville in the 60s- not the Isle of Man at all!

They released 2 EPs back in 2018, and let me tell you, you’ll be wanting more and more after listening to EP #3. As you go back and listen to their previous releases, you can definitely hear a band that has been influenced by so many bands but have most certainly created something of their own and done the Isle of Man so proud. EP #1 has all the makings of a great band, and by the time we get to EP #2 you know full well that this band isn’t to be messed with at all. The passion is infectious, and it makes you want to dig out some old records too and just have a great old time. They’ve had a bit of a lineup change over the past couple of years, with Matt Twist now as the drummer (he’s a BEAST!) but regardless of who is in the band, you simply cannot deny how tight the sound is and how perfect every damn song is.

I know they’ve probably been compared to The Cramps a stupid amount of times, but to be honest with you, it isn’t a lazy comparison at all. You can hear in Dolyn’s vocals that Lux has played a huge part in his style but by no means does it come across as a replica. What you hear is someone who has been influenced by the greatest band of all time, then gone on to create their own band, with their own style. Pretty sure if Lux was around still he’d love them. How could you not! Songs like One More Time (taken from EP #2) have that signature harmonica sound that makes you feel like a train is about to steamroll into your body then catapult you into the delirious and magical world of Mad Daddy. For me, their first 2 EPs are a solid way of showing the world what Mad Daddy can do but it’s EP #3 that shows us exactly who they are and again, makes you want to hear more and more from them. 

EP #2 has a more Blues feel to it, a little like EP #1 but I’m all about EP #3 because it has a more raw sound to it. Everything about EP #3 is tougher and has way more attitude. It has more of a Punk feel to it, and you’ve just to keep on hitting the repeat button on these songs! The coolest thing about EP #1 and #2 is that they were recorded live at one of the most sacred places on the Isle Of Man- Ballagroove Recording Studios (I think my uncle has  recorded there too with his band/bands.) Knowing they were recorded in this way makes you feel even more so that you’re right there in the room with them. The atmosphere on all 3 EPs is electric and just a real pleasure to listen to.

To sum up, Mad Daddy are one of the coolest bands around and their current lineup is super strong. I’m sure whatever comes next after EP #3 (maybe a full record? World tour? A national holiday named after them?) it’s going to blow us all away. Mad Daddy are a bunch of pals making straight up Punk/Rock ‘n’ Roll music to obliterate your eardrums in the most beautiful way imaginable. So if you like your music fast and like a Glaswegian kiss to the soul, then Mad Daddy are the band for you.

https://maddaddy.bandcamp.com





PANCAKES.

22 08 2020

There are many brilliant things to have come from Japan, and Punk is definitely one of them. There are so many incredible Punk bands from Japan. There’s one in particular that I’ve become obsessed with, and they are called Pancakes.

Pancakes are a real underground gnarly band with songs that have the same attitude of the greats we all know and love. The snarliness of Stiv Bators flows throughout every song on their newest record, released via the always exceptional Kafadan Kontak Records. This is a proper raw record that sounds like they did it in one take in someone’s bedroom or basement. That raw sound is what makes you become obsessed with the music. Every song sounds like an anthem, and every song makes you wish you could go to Osaka to catch one of their shows, and live in that moment forever.

There’s no soppy love songs here thank god! Just a real ferocious bunch of Punk songs that you need to play loud. This is the kind of music that makes me miss going to gigs, and feeling like I’m part of something. This is the kind of music that makes you lose your mind in the most freeing way possible. You can just imagine beers being thrown about, bodies jumping around and into walls of people as the music kicks in. Pancakes are one of the most underrated bands around, but that’s okay because to the 5 of you who read this- I hope you buy their music!

The 6 songs on this record don’t hit the 3 minute mark at all- they’ve got that Punk sound nailed good and proper. It’s the kind of record that you just keep playing over and over, not because it is THAT good because it gives you everything you want from music, irrespective of the genre. These 3 friends make beautiful music, and to pick 1 standout song on this record is impossible. Which is why you just can’t help but play it over and over, almost religiously. The record opens with Trash which instantly makes you fall in love with the band. It is so loud, so obnoxiously rowdy- it is perfect. Honestly this is one of the best Punk records I’ve ever heard; I could happily put this record next to Rocket To Russia. It doesn’t sound like a record from now, or then even. It has something about it that defies time, and that’s what makes it so fucking cool!

If you’re in search of a band with fast, hard-hitting songs then Pancakes are the band for you. They’ve got something about them that just leaves your ears wanting more and more. Bands like this don’t come around often but my god when they do, it is a blessing! I Say Shit and No Future Boy are such great songs, all you can do is play them as loud as you can and just throw your body around. Seeing as we can’t go to shows at the moment, just trash your room and throw drinks around to get the experience of it all! Such a fantastic record, and I’m so excited to hear more from them.

They are noisy as fuck, and that’s part of the appeal. They have this real DIY feel to their songs, and you feel like you’re listening to a band go at in their rehearsal space- there’s that unfiltered sound that just makes you crave this kind of music. As I mentioned earlier, Japan is home to some pretty cool things and people.; Pancakes are probably the coolest. And best.

So if you’re looking for something to blow your mind and to play loud, then Pancakes are the band for you. Who knows if the band will ever make it to the UK with how things are at the moment, but for now, buy the records and enjoy.





L.A. WITCH: Play With Fire.

18 08 2020
Play With Fire | L.A. WITCH

One of the few things I’ve been super excited about is the brand new record by the finest band from L.A. A band who I have been obsessed with, in love with since the very start. A band who perfectly capture everything I love and want from music. A band that have been the soundtrack to my days- good and bad. A band that are just the coolest. A band that everyone should fall in love with.

This Friday, L.A. Witch’s second record, Play With Fire will finally be released. I’ve had a copy for a couple of months, and I’ve been dying to write about this record. Now I can finally do it, I’m not sure if my words will make sense but hopefully you will be able to make sense of my love for the record and get yourself a copy on Friday.

The record opens with the tougher than leather anthem, Fire Starter. It perfectly sets the mood for this record. It’s a record that you can imagine listening to whilst on the open road, the wind blowing in your face and slowly, every worry you carry is falling away from you. This follows right into the anthemic Motorcycle Boy- which is beautiful ode to a loved one in a way that only L.A. Witch can do. There is no room for comparisons here- whether it be to other bands or to their debut record. Play With Fire is the record of the year; that’s all you need to know.

Sade, Irita and Ellie have hugely excelled themselves on this record and have given us that holy water we desperately need to cleanse our mind, body and soul right now. The record is a masterpiece, and everything about it just oozes something so raw, so cool- it’s such an exciting record and they have truly gone above what we thought we were going to get on this record. Forget what you’d previously heard- Play With Fire is where it is at.

Dark Horse is a song I really need to praise. I know I said NO comparisons, but this song gives me serious Jim Morrison vibes. The poetry in the words, the way Sade’s vocals on this are just unreal. On some songs her vocals are distorted, but here we can really hear how strong her voice is. It also shows us how Ellie and Irita have tightened their sound, and along with Sade’s guitar- it’s just the perfect song. If you want a song that shows you how far the band have come and how they have perfected their art once more, then this is the song. Easily.

You know when you hear a record, and you just imagine how it will sound live? That’s what L.A. Witch give you here, and more. I’m not talking dingy and sweaty basement bars here- I’m talking big stadiums where the front row is made up of kids who will cite it as their first show, then go on to form their own bands and change the world. That’s how great this record is. The riff on I Wanna Lose blows my mind every single time, and with Ellie’s drumming and how Irita brings this urgency with the bass, and you’ve got Sade unleashing hell with her guitar- come on! What more could you ever need?

Play With Fire is the record we all need right now, and for eternity. It’s got this seedy road trip feel to it, it makes you feel like you’ve tripped up into an underworld that no one else has discovered yet. You also feel like you’ve joined a cult and L.A. Witch are now your guides. Do what they say, and you’ll be fine. The attitude on this record is on point, songs like Sexorexia (please god make this a single!) is empowering. It’s tough and my god Sade’s vocals will give you goose bumps and make you feel like you’ve found your own nirvana. It is INCREDIBLE. There’s something about this record that feels nostalgic but also unheard of. It is a proper magical record, and every single song on this record will take you over completely. Every single song deserves its place here, and the way the songs are placed is perfect. Listen to it in order first, then do whatever you want with it. Play each song 5 times before the next if that’s what you want to do. Blast it as loudly as you can. Knock on your neighbour’s door to tell them how great it is! Tell anyone who will listen that THIS is the record of the year. Play With Fire is one of those records that we will be talking about in years to come- it’s got a timeless feel to it, and it’s unlike anything you will have heard before. It is a truly mind-blowing listen from start to finish. If you want songs to waste away the day to, to escape to or to even heal parts of you- LA. Witch have got you covered, always.

The record feels like the best acid trip imaginable (I’ve never done drugs, but I’d imagine this record is how it feels.) You are taken into a different world, and what I adore about Play With Fire is that is stands for something. It’s a courageous record, and it gives you something to believe in; and it makes you feel like an outlaw on the run whilst listening to it. This record could easily be the soundtrack to a film, and I hope one day L.A. Witch create the soundtrack for a film because it would just be insane! For me this record fully justifies why I adore the band so much. Ellie is the best drummer around. Irita is the best bassist you’ll hear and Sade is ferocious on guitar, and her vocals are just as powerful. L.A. Witch are a band that are going to get better and better with everything they do- that’s obvious.

I’ll wrap this up with a quote from Sade about the record: “Play With Fire is a suggestion to make things happen. Don’t fear mistakes or the future. Take a chance. Say and do what you really feel, even if nobody agrees with your ideas. These are feelings that have stopped me in the past. I want to inspire others to be freethinkers even if it causes a little burn.”

Play With Fire is out this Friday via Suicide Squeeze Records.





GRAVEST TRIBUTE TO THE CRAMPS.

15 08 2020

If you’re reading this, hopefully you too regard The Cramps as the greatest band of all time. There is something about The Cramps that just pisses over everything and anything you have heard, and will ever hear. What they created will last for an eternity, and to hear bands cite them as an influence is so great. What’s even better is that one of the most exciting record labels around have put out a tribute to The Cramps, and it features a  hell of a lot of exceptional bands.

Gravest Tribute consists of 24 wonderful covers, and they are done in such an effortlessly cool way. If you didn’t know they were songs by The Cramps already, then you’d be even more impressed by what you’re hearing. Every single band has captured everything that The Cramps were about. The best part is that not every song is sung in English- it’s just the coolest tribute record ever! Thing is, after you’ve played it in full you start to think of other bands that could cover songs by The Cramps too. I’ve got a bunch of bands floating in my head that I would LOVE to hear do a song by The Cramps, but this record is stunning. It is the perfect tribute to the greatest band of all time.

Right now I cannot pick a favourite cover, because every band has just blown me away with how great they are! I love how each band have captured that beautiful snarl that Lux had at certain moments and how certain songs had this raw attitude to them (bands like Duende! Morons Morons- they totally nailed this.) Charm Bag have made their version of I Was A Teenage Werewolf just as smutty as the original and slowed it down slightly but they have completely and utterly got down Ivy’s sound. They’ve really gone beyond with this version- it’s a close favourite for sure!

Los Crveles and Shawnis And The Shimmers are two bands you just want to hear cover songs by The Cramps all the damn time. I want Los Crveles to do all of the A Date With Elvis record- that would b magical! No Valentine have also done something truly great on Can Your Pussy Do The Dog, and you cannot help but think that Lux would love this cover and the whole damn record. It’s just such an exciting collection of songs, and it makes you appreciate the legacy of The Cramps even more. See, I’m not someone who is a huge fan of cover versions at all, but when someone takes a song and makes it theirs- then I’m likely to be sold. What every band on this record has done is pay a beautiful tribute to a band that have evidently influenced them in their own way. It’s such a lovely thing to hear. Every version of the songs on this record are a respectable nod to The Cramps, and I like to think the members of the band that are no longer with us would appreciate this tribute.

I think this record will even sit nicely with those who are precious about cover songs (worse than me) and aren’t into a band that are sacred to them having their songs covered. Each band on this record have done something truly impressive, and maybe it will turn fans of these bands on to The Cramps!





VOODOO BANDITS.

8 08 2020

By now you know how much I miss home, and that I haven’t been back on the Isle of Man in nearly a year. I miss the beach. I miss proper chips. I miss pals. I miss my family. I miss my brother’s dog. I miss my mum’s cat. I miss fresh air. It can’t be helped, and knowing everyone is safe and well because they shut the borders so the virus wouldn’t ruin the Island is a good thing. But still, I just want to go home. I thought my need to go home couldn’t be more heightened but the other night, I received an email from a band that are from the Isle of Man. Cue my homesickness going into overdrive.

Voodoo Bandits are 4 buddies from the Isle of Man and they are in short, brilliant. I’m not trying to put a biased view on you, but it’s the truth. They’ve got this powerful Surfer Rock feel, and knowing that there are bands on the Isle of Man that sound like this make me so proud to be from there. If I had bands like this back home when I was growing up, I may have been more sociable. Instead, I stayed in my room listening to music. You could say that I’ve been waiting for social distancing since my teens!

Initially I was going to write about their glorious new song, Backyard Wrestling but they deserve more than that. I’m going all in. I’m just going to give you all reasons possible as to why they are one of the most exciting bands around. They’ve been compared to bands like WAVVES and Hockey Dad, and even The Strokes but to be honest, they’ve got something else. Personally, I can only hear a slight nod to WAVVES and that’s about it. You can really hear a band that are truly dedicated to what they do, and are perfectionists- and that is by no means, a bad thing. You truly feel that this is a band that are sure of themselves, and they’ve only been putting music out since 2019.

Backyard Wrestling came out on the 31st July and it is a perfect Summer anthem. It makes you want to escape to the beach and laze about. I guess it’s a frustrating listen right now (unless you’re a selfish prick who doesn’t know how to SOCIALLY DISTANCE!) but it just gives you that beautiful summer mood. The one band I can liken this to is the debut record by Best Coast which coincidently, turns 10 years old this year. That record is the definition of summer and Voodoo Bandits, 10 years on, have created their own summer mood for us all to enjoy. But it doesn’t start and end with this beautiful song.

Yesterday’s Jam and and Empty Swimming Pool are two ethereal gems, and have made 2020 less crappy. Hearings songs like this just make you feel good. The lyrics have a sadness to them, but the music makes you forget that. Take the music away, and read the lyrics and you’ll see just how gorgeously poetic they are. Again, just another reason to love this band and be utterly proud of the Isle of Man. Watching their music videos, and seeing places that I know so well and seeing the beach makes me homesick but at the same time, just so proud and delighted. Sink Below is the perfect example of this, and the video could even be used as a tourism promo video for the Island. Vocally, it is still my favourite song of theirs and I adore the lyrics on this so much. They’re just an effortlessly cool and slick band. Exceptional musicians and an absolute asset to the Isle of Man!

If you’re looking for a new band to get rid of your blues, or to just make you mentally feel free- Voodoo Bandits are the band for you. There’s this perfect innocence in the songs that gives you such a freeing feeling; they are just a delight to listen to. Of course I’ve not been to one of their shows, but going by the sheer passion and drive they have on record, I’m pretty sure it will come across just swell at their shows. I love them. I just bloody love them; exciting, enthralling and a pleasure to listen to. I’m super excited to hear more from them.

You can waste your days away listening to Voodoo Bandits right here: https://voodoobandits.bandcamp.com





FONTAINES D.C. : A Hero’s Death.

30 07 2020
A Hero's Death Fontaines DC.jpg

In a few small hours, the world will be able to finally hear the new record by Fontaines D.C. I don’t say this lightly when I say it is truly one of the most heartfelt, heartbreaking and brutally honest records of the year. There will be no comparisons to their debut, Dogrel. The only fair comparison is that both records are phenomenal and show us exactly why they are one of the most exciting and exhilarating bands around. If you’re looking for a record that soaks up all of your anger, insecurities, fear, lust and all that goes in between, then this is the record for you. Treasure it.

Fontaines D.C. are quite frankly the best at what they do. We can all agree on that, right? With so much uncertainty in the world it’s hard to find any good in anything or in anyone. It’s totally okay to have a meltdown. It’s okay to feel like shit and not have the words to describe why. You can be as happy as a pig in shit one minute, then be a bawling mess the next. I get it. More than I wish I did. One of the few things that can get me out of a rut is music. Certain bands can drag me out when I can’t. We all look for a crutch in conventional and unconventional things. What they have done on A Hero’s Death is something that goes beyond words. It’s the record you’ve been needing for so long. You’ve been so desperate for this record. You will cling to it- day and night. It will be all you have at 3am when the world goes quiet, but your mind doesn’t.

Vocally, Grian has excelled himself. His voice on this record is that of someone who isn’t afraid to be vulnerable with their words and share them with you in a way you didn’t know someone could. Without being too personal, I’ve struggled since last August when my Gran died to find any joy in music. I didn’t want to hear anything new. I didn’t want to hear anything old. I got in this phase of just playing certain songs over and over. To the point where I didn’t want to listen to music. I cried myself to sleep many times listening to The Murder Capital. I blocked out bits of grief to Fontaines D.C. I was finding ways to cope. Nearly a year on, I’m still there. I’ve made peace with grief, fully not accepting she is gone at times. The poetry on A Hero’s Death is beautifully crafted, a sheer romantic record in all ways possible. The typical to the not so typical. One thing that is constantly constant is the greatness and honesty on the record.

A Lucid Dream is my number one obsession right now; I love the ferocious energy it has, and I cannot wait to see them perform this live (May cannot com quick enough.) There is something about the way it musically sounds like The Birthday Party but vocally, it goes beyond. I love everything about this song. You can just imagine it being played live, with the lights as dim as possible with the smoke machine going on overdrive, and everyone in the room just loses their mind to it. Heavenly. God, I miss going to gigs.

You Said is a gentle number, vocally. But don’t let that fool you. It is a monster of a song and the way A Lucid Dream flows right into it is just divine. I love how the songs flow into each other. The order of the songs on A Hero’s Death is sublime, and you cannot help but fall in love with this record within seconds. Their second record comes just around 18 months or so (a little less) than their debut. You can hear the growth and power in what they do. I’m all for music sometimes keeping me on edge/making me feel a little uncomfortable but A Hero’s Death is a safety net. It is such a comforting record that just soothes your soul. One of my favourite moments on the record is Carlos and Conor’s guitar on You Said. It is so gentle, but it is so powerful. Mix this with Tom’s ethereal drumming and Conor’s slick bass- you’ve got the most beautifully created song imaginable.

There is so much poetic imagery on this record, and songs like Oh Such a Spring feel like a lullaby and all of a sudden you are smacked in the chops again with the title track. It’s an effortlessly brilliant move, and the way Grian chants “Life ain’t always empty” just makes you feel less alone. The song is a mantra for those who are unsure or are struggling. It’s alright. It’ll be alright.

The last song on the record is just over 5 minutes long and I urge you to play No on your own, through headphones. The whole record should be played like this, but this song in particular just makes you feel like you need to go outside and find a place quiet/sacred and listen to it through headphones with no interruptions. Make this song yours. It is one of the most beautiful songs I’ve heard in a long time. I read somewhere that bands like Suicide and Beach House played an influential role to this record. As someone who adores both bands, I can definitely hear a nod to Beach House on this one. It is the most perfect ending to such a perfect record. I’m in awe of every single song.

2019 saw the band probably work harder more than most. Touring was relentless and their music was (and of course, still is) vital. A Hero’s Death is one of the few positive things to happen this year, and my god it is such a powerful and important record. It is one of those records that you hope some kid in a tiny village hears, and they scribble their thoughts in a notebook. They find like-minded pals and form a band which allows them to speak their truth and what they see/feel. It is such an inspiring record, and I honestly don’t think anything is going to top this record. I love the sense of community the band give off. You can feel it on the Facebook group, you can feel it intensely at their live shows. They are a band that just make everyone feel every single word, every note, every beat. Every single detail is felt right in your soul. And you cling to it.

With 11 songs coming in just over 45 minutes, Fontaines D.C. have given us something to treat as our reflection. Something that pulls things out of us that we may be afraid of. It’s comforting but it is also THE most exciting record of the year. My words don’t do this record justice. It’s out tomorrow- BUY IT!





DRIBBLE: Taking Off.

27 07 2020

It can sometimes be pretty difficult to write about a band that you no NOTHING about and they have only one song to go off on. But, when they make the kind of music you love it isn’t so bad.

Dribble only formed at the start of the year, and given how much of a shitshow 2020 has been, we can consider Dribble to be one of the positive things to happen this year. They’ve got this beautiful heavy sound- a real raw Doom sound, and it is that sheer heaviness that lures you in right away. Think bands like KYUSS, Melvins etc. with a gnarly Punk feel. Basically, mix Black Flag, Minor Threat with Melvins and you will get Dribble. The only way to listen to Dribble is as loud as possible.

Something to really be in awe of is that the band are a duo. There’s only two of them making this beautiful noise (see, I was right about duos being the best!) Taking Off is a beautiful nod to the bands and styles of music that Luke and Thomas love. Taking Off has this effortlessly slick and heavy sound- the guitar feels like trees being hacked down and the drums are the intense echoing of the noise ricocheting through. The song will shatter through your rib cage and tear out your insides. All the gore, all the blood, all the mess. It is such a hard-hitting song. To have this much of an impact with just one song, well, you know they are going to do great things. Bands that have a heavy sound like this truly come alive in a live setting. It may be a while before we are able to witness Dribble in all their loud and rowdy glory, but it will most certainly be worth the wait.

I can’t wait to hear more from the band, but for now let’s all sit back and blast Taking Off as loud as possible.

Taking Off is out via the brand new DIY label, Pantherburn Records.