JOHN: Out Here On The Fringes.

7 10 2019

JOHN

 

What’s got two heads, four arms and four legs? No, not some weird mythical creature but an exceptional duo called JOHN. Two pals, both called John. Drums and guitar. Rowdy and really exciting. What more do you need?

JOHN are a band we all need. A band we need to truly treasure. Their new record, Out Here On The Fringes came out on Friday. I’ve been playing it almost religiously since yesterday evening, and if I could fully explain why I’m in awe of this record in a way that makes sense, I would. Sadly, I can’t. So, you’re going to get a weird rant, again

The record consists of nine mind-blowing and deafening songs to just make you go apeshit to. It is a record that will stick with you because you become obsessed with the sheer heaviness and passion in this band and they have brought it to life once more on this record. It is a record that deserves to be heard and praised by all, those who have heard this record already know just how remarkable it is. We’ve seen this band grow and grow, and what they have created- what these two friends have created, is something beautiful. They have such a loud sound, you sort of expect there to be about five of them in the band, but these two know exactly what they are doing here. They’ve created a cult classic with Out Here On The Fringes.

 

 

I love how the songs feel like tormented souls trying to push out of the body. They’ve nailed that heavy industrial like sound that’s in bands I love, such as Pop.1280. There’s this effortlessly menacing sound on this record; sometimes bands try really hard to have a bruising sound, but for JOHN it just comes so naturally and that’s what makes you become obsessed with them. The vocals are so tough and snarly. You can hear the importance of every single word, and when you feel this you truly know you have found something to cling on to with bloody hands.

What makes this record so memorable? Well, as cliched as it sounds- everything. You want tight production? Got it. You want anthems? Got it. You want riffs that make you puke in your mouth because you get that hyped up from listening? Got it. Out Here On The Fringes has everything you could possibly want (and more) from an intense and heavy Rock record. There are essences of Punk on this record, of course. The Stoner Rock heaviness of drums and guitar make you feel like you’re in this insane world that you can only get to when you play songs like Solid State or Dog Walker. It is such a fucking strong record. It’s a record that just makes you want to kiss someone it’s that good!

The more I listen to this record, the more I notice about the record. Everything about this record is just an instant classic, you know? This could be one of those albums that the younger generation hear and think, “I’m going to do that.” It’s such a powerful record, and I really don’t think JOHN get how vital they are. Bands like JOHN, their buddies IDLES, and Heavy Lungs are SO important. They’re my holy trinity and have been for some time now. Each of them is just getting better and better. With this record, JOHN have created something to really wake you up. It’s the record you play when you just need to feel SOMETHING. The title track is one of the best songs I’ve heard this year, and musically it is an absolute beast too.

 

 

Out Here On The Fringes is one of the most exciting records you’ll hear all year. There is no way we can deny just how phenomenal JOHN are. They’ve got everything you could possibly want from a straight-up Rock record. The Punk attitude is infectious on this record, and with one listen you will be hooked. I have no idea how many times I have listened to this record today; I’ve been playing it on and off since 7am ish when I left the house.

My love for duos has fully be thrown into overdrive with this record. JOHN are just a joy to listen to, and the songs on this record need to be played really loud. Soak it all up and embrace your favourite duo.





LEATHERS: Class Action.

1 10 2019

 

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On my day off today I have done what I set out to do- sleep past noon. I got up at about half past one. A well-earned rest, and I’m still tired. It’s okay, just a few more hours to kill before bedtime is upon me. I cannot wait. Anyway, I need to listen to some music to keep me awake for a little while longer whilst I avoid doing things I should probably be doing.

Bristol is the home to some amazing bands from IDLES to Emily Breeze to Oh, The Guilt and beyond. It’s a place that is just oozing talent of all kinds. It has this solid community and it’s a place that deserves to be praised for all the music it has given us. It is a truly phenomenal place, and there is no shortage of masterpieces coming out of there.

So here we are, another excellent Bristolian band to praise- Leathers. A brilliant duo who make you feel like you are listening to a Gospel version of The Cramps. There’s a lot of soul in this band, and they have something that just makes you want to absolutely play the shit out of this record. Before you know it, you will be chanting along to all the hits such as Bad News and One Track Mind (not a Johnny Thunders cover but still awesome!)

On their new EP, Class Action the band are firmly letting us know that this is the kind of sound that NEEDS to be heard, and it needs to be heard pretty loud. Luckily no one is home and I’m playing it as loud as I want. The more I listen to it, the more I can really appreciate how great they are as musicians. They play with this unified sound that maybe sounds tighter because they are a duo. If there was more of them, it may spoil it and besides, it just reinforces my fondness of duos. Of course, the only downside is that the EP is only four songs long, but you make do, don’t you? You just hit repeat.

 

 

I love that real trashy sound they have. It’s a really raw Garage Rock sound with beautiful notes of Psychobilly. Fully aware I’ve just made the band sound like a wine, but it’s alright! Anyway, the songs are easy to get hold of and learn by heart. You can really imagine their live shows and the crowd going nuts and singing along as loud as they can.

Class Action has a strong DIY feel to it, and I love when you can hear the hard work and passion gone into a record. I love how their song No More reminds me so much of Talking Heads’ Psycho Killer; part of me was hoping for part of the lyrics to pop up. Maybe they’ll do it at a show, that’d be pretty cool right? You know the part that would work, it’s obvious! It’s probably one of my favourites off the EP right now. There’s a level of fury in this one that coms across in such an effortless manner Ed beats the shit out of the drums on this one, and Chris’ voice just keeps you locked in- you find yourself going back to this song the most.

If you’re into trashy Garage Rock, then Leathers are the band for you and Class Action is most certainly the EP for you. Play it loud, play it often!

Class Action is released via KM Records.





BROKEN BRIDGE.

11 08 2019

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Sometimes finding the will to write about music slips from me. I stare at the keyboard hoping something comes out. I’ve hit delete many times recently over anything I’ve written. But, I seem to have found some inspiration from a band from Geneva called Broken Bridge.

Broken Bridge have a heavy, Garage Rock sound that is found in my favourites Table Scraps. They just make you want to trash shit, start a band, stir up some trouble. Anything, everything. They really smack you in the kisser with their exceptional sound. They are one of the best bands around right now, and are probably the best band from Geneva right now also.

 

 

So far up on their bandcamp page is a Live From Geneva release. These live versions of their songs show you just how exceptional they are, and how they play like a band who were sent here to just deafen us with their magnificent sound. The three of them (although the recordings on bandcamp are from when they were a duo, or they could be a duo now? I don’t know!) just take you some really wild place with their sound. They have a typical Garage Rock sound, but there is something super slick about them. Honestly, if I didn’t know I’d have assumed that they were from the 60s. They have bits of The Gruesomes in them, bits of Count Five, bits of The Vagrants in their sound but they add something else. Their song Sugar has like a sped up feel of The Doors which I love. It’s a brilliant song, and to be honest with you- Broken Bridge should be huge. They are brilliant musicians who are utterly cool and fearless with their sound. For me, I’m putting them up there with my favourite French band, Dr Chan. Both bands have this beautiful energy and soul within their sound. You can’t get enough of it.

Broken Bridge aren’t afraid to give us that raw, lo-fi sound. That fuzzy sound that has the potential to burst your eardrums if played at the right volume. Everything about their sound has this elegant yet brutal tone to it. They aren’t afraid to be gnarly and raw, but at the same time have this clear and crisp sound that you just want to hear 24/7. For me, it’s heavenly. I love how they can truly move you, and how they make you feel like you’re falling in love with all those sacred music moments all over again. Get Away and Worst Shadows are two of the songs that you just need to blast as loud as possible, and really get how brilliant they are. Broken Bridge are such an exciting band to listen to, and to just really invest in.

With just a live release up on their bandcamp page, it is enough for me to know that are most certainly a band to watch. I really hope they come to the UK soon because they deserve to just take over the world in their own slick way. They remind me ever so slightly of The Pretty Things and I think this is evident on Don’t Go To The River which sounds like it has nods to Midnight To Six Man. Broken Bridge have a really together sound, and you can’t help but think you are listening to a band that have been around for decades.

 

 

If you catch them live, please go see them. Then demand they do a UK tour. Until then, play their music as loud as you can, watch their music videos and just fall madly in love with them like I have.





THE HONEY CULT.

29 11 2018

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The Honey Cult are a duo that sound like there’s about 20 of them. This huge sound is brutal, it’s fuzzy and it’s insanely loud. They come from Maryland, which is home to two bands I love- Beach House and Void. Maryland doesn’t have a set scene, and the diversity within the exceptional music that has come from there has left plenty of room for bands like The Honey Cult.

Their first release came out earlier this year, and the day after my birthday they released a few more songs. Including a brilliant cover of Do You Wanna Dance, which makes you feel as if the song is theirs. That’s the power of a great cover, but there’s something you need to know about The Honey Cult- they’re spooky as hell. Their sound is like The Mummies, The Cramps and some off the wall Garage Rock sound- which is obviously why I love them so.

They make the kind of music you want to play stupidly loud, and to then press your ears right up against the speakers. Who cares if you go a bit deaf- if this is the last band you’ll ever hear, then so be it. I love how they make you feel like you’re in a straight to video horror film. Where the fake blood is obviously ketchup, you know the film. The songs wallop you right in that mush of yours. You want every song to consume everything you are, and you want to live deep inside of these songs. There’s this alluring decadence to these songs that just completely enamour you. I can’t get enough of this band, and it’s tough to wrap my head round the fact that they are a pretty new band. They sound like they’ve been doing this for decades.

The Honey Cult make machine gun sounding songs, songs that sound like a motorbike leaving a trail of dust behind as you ride off into the sunset. That machine gun sound coming from the guitar creates these jolts that work with how you move your body to these songs. These songs are incredible. They are fast, they are off the wall and they just leave you wanting more, and crave them to be louder. I think The Honey Cult are a band that are just going to get louder each time, and I just adore that about them. They make the kind of music that would have The Cramps and Captain Beefheart losing their minds over. They have something about them that just instantly makes you want to throw your limbs about, turn the volume up to an anti-social level and just lose yourself in these songs. The songs have so much soul to them, and the creepy atmosphere that they give off is nothing short of exceptional. The only band I can think of that they come close to in the UK is Table Scraps. They’ve both got this wild energy to their songs, and this energy just makes you want to go to all of their live shows, and be free of any daily responsibilities. If you love Table Scraps, then you’ll love The Honey Cult for sure.

I love the reverb in the vocals, and how the drums and guitars speed up in certain songs (Crimson Mask is the prime example) to keep up with each other, and they then create this pace that just keeps you on edge. I love the sheer excitement that they bring, and I love how they have this ability to just make you oblivious to where you are when you listen to them. They really make you lose yourself in the music, and for me that is such a powerful thing. It’s something that doesn’t hit us all too often, but when it does- you’ve got that band for life.

If you check their Facebook page, The Honey Cult don’t even have 100 likes yet. They are still in their baby pages, but don’t let that put you off- they are absolutely one of the best bands you’ll hear. For me, they are most definitely one of the best and most exciting bands I’ve listened to this year and I can’t wait to hear a hell of a lot more from them.

Play ’em loud!





THE DEVILS.

3 10 2018

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If you’re looking for a real Garage Rock/Trashy band, then look no further than heroes of Naples- The Devils. A duo who have been sent from the fiery pits of Hell to lure you in with them, and to convert you at their church of Rock ‘n’ Roll. If at first listen you are afraid, then stick with it.

Buckle up.

The Devils are a proper exciting band; Gianni absolutely destroys the guitar, and Erica is sent to brutalise you with her screams and drumming. They both rip right through you with their smutty sound that would have Lux Interior smirking. These songs aren’t meant to be heavenly, but they sure sound it. The way they just make you feel several shades of wrong for getting into these blistering songs that are evidently about the things no one else dares touch on. Just look at the song titles, and you’ll understand. The songs are loud and sound like the end of the world approaching. Maybe The Devils are a cult- where do we sign up?

The songs ooze all the things that you’d probably shy away from, but the way in which they grip you with their sound is nothing short of inevitable. With even just a few seconds in, you know that they are going to be a band that you cannot shake off. Don’t Tell Jesus is a massively eerie song that makes you feel as if you’ve done something you maybe shouldn’t have. They bring out the side of you that others may want to suppress. Unleash it.

They released the funny but weirdly cool titled record, Iron Butt at the start of the year. I guess you’ve got to be kind of a hard ass to stomach these songs. We have some exceptionally romantic songs on this record such as Guts is Enough and Put Your Devil into my Ass. Some will turn their noses up at these songs, mainly for their titles but they are missing the point. Put all that aside, and you’ll easily hear that you’re listening to a really, really exciting band who will just ruin you completely with their glorious sound.

The feedback in the songs, the screaming, the sheer loudness is what kept me going back for more from them. I’m obsessed with how much noise two people can create, and how they just make it sound like a constant Horror film. One of those low-budget Horror films that has brilliant music kicking in when something terrible is about to happen. You can’t help but think something is going to go off when you listen to The Devils. You don’t feel safe listening to them, and for me that is most certainly part of the charm and attraction.

Sin, You Sinners was their first record but by no means treat this as a record that makes you feel the band are being cautious. This is a band who right from the start knew what they wanted to do, how they wanted to do it and who they were coming for. Their songs are consistently great, and the sheer speed they play at is amazing. You can’t help but invest a lot of time into them, they just have a sound that you feel you have been searching for, for so long. Now you have it, can anything else compare?

Gianni singing and Erica’s screaming are a perfect match, and you can’t believe that they have only been making music as The Devils since 2015. They sound like the spawn of The Cramps, but at the same time- unlike anything else you’ve ever heard.

Of course I am slightly biased with my love for the band as they are Italian, but to be honest- I’d still be obsessed with them regardless of where they are from. When you listen to them, you can’t help but let your mind go off and make you imagine you are at their live shows. Their live shows are probably completely wild, and I sincerely hope they come over to the UK soon and unleash their Hell upon us all with their brutal sound.

Play loud, of course.





SEXTILE.

14 08 2018

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I thought I had written about Sextile but I clearly hadn’t. I’ve been a fan of them for a couple of years now, so better late than never to write about them. They are touring the UK in September along with a new EP coming out, but I’m just going to focus on their music to date and try put across my love for them in a somewhat coherent manner.

They’ve had a few line-up changes, but now it’s just Brady and Melissa. I’m always in awe of duos because I feel they work a bit harder than most, and when they make this much noise- I can’t help but be impressed. There’s a real rugged industrial feel to their music, and if you’re a fan of my biggest loves, Cold Cave, then you’ll adore Sextile. Or you’re probably smart and love them already.

What I love about Sextile is that they make me feel like I am listening to Seventeen Seconds by The Cure all over again. If you’ve read anything I’ve written before, you probably know that I’m always looking for music that makes me feel like I’m listening to Seventeen Seconds all over again. Sextile do it in such an incredibly eerie way. They’ll freak you out with their wonderful synth based sounds. This is the kind of music you’d find in some real dark and twisted thriller. You know, when someone really creepy is chasing someone through a forest or down a desolate street. It’ll give you the chills, and you won’t be able to stop listening.

I love how they make their drums sound like Bobby Gillespie when he was in The Jesus And Mary Chain- simple but genius. They’re an effortlessly brilliant band that have something about them that just makes you want to cast daily responsibilities aside and follow them on tour. Sure the set may be the same, but imagine having that constant feeling of seeing a band you love every single night on stage. There’s no better feeling, if you’re a music obsessive like me. One Of These which is taken from 2017’s release, Albeit Living is one of the best openers I’ve heard for a record in a long time. It’s a probably smack in the belly, and like I mentioned- the drums on it is just like The Jesus And Mary Chain’s Psychocandy era. As well as Seventeen Seconds, Psychocandy is another record I use as reference for how a new band I’m listening to make me feel. If they have that urgency and eeriness to their sound like those two, I’ll probably love them.

I’m currently playing them loud enough to drown out the car alarm that keeps going off across the road, and it’s a pretty solid distraction. Maybe my neighbours would get into Sextile too, but its 10:30pm and I’m not that much of an asshole to cause a disturbance. But the person with the car alarm, that’s a different story. It’s been going on since 3 this morning. Anyway, enough of that.

I’m pretty sure they’ll get the Cold Cave, Nine Inch Nails and Drab Majesty comparisons lobbed at them. They’d be in good company (I’m being biased but still) but Sextile have something about them that gives them a brilliant distinctive sound. Part of you feels like you’ve gone way back in time, and another part of you feels like you’ve headed deep into the future because this is totally unlike anything else you’ve heard before. I love how Sextile can create such a dark and creepy atmosphere with their music. It feels so natural, and it is something to absolutely treasure.

For me, I’d say the best time to listen to Sextile when it’s dark out. Allow yourself to feel a little on edge and unsure, then go full pelt into the music. Don’t hold nothing back. Sextile will take you on this journey into what you didn’t think you were ready for, but you totally needed. I love the sordid and animalistic sound they have, and I’m pretty sure in a live setting it’ll just be out of this world.

Sextile do have a new EP coming out in September, and I think it is the first where it is just Melissa and Brady. It was recorded in their home- imagine being their neighbour! That’d be ridiculously cool. They used a LinnDrum on this record, and it sounds so, so good.

You can pre-order it here: https://sextile.bandcamp.com/album/3 and it will be released via Felte Records. Buy the EP and come see them on tour!





FRANK’S DAUGHTER- The Sound Of A Heart Unravelling.

1 07 2013

 

 

 

 

Formed over wine and whiskey in one of the best places I’ve never been to (Brooklyn) Frank’s Daughter make music that is made to be enjoyed alone; in the midst of an emotional breakdown. Purely because they will pull you through. Not much can lure you out when your mind decides to go askew, but they are perfect enough to assist with bettering you. Each song is an insight to how sometimes, when it feels insanely dark- it is sometimes when you are at your best.

They’ve recorded some of their songs in a closed season Alpine hotel when London got too much, or maybe it didn’t provide enough. I fully understand how this city can break and lift one’s spirits at once. Oxford Street is grey hell hole. Soho is a thriving den of the weird and wonderful. You find bliss after a stint in hell.

The Sound Of A Heart Unravelling is one of the best titles for a record I’ve heard in a while; mainly because it fits the mood of the record. Frank’s Daughter posses the darkness that is found in the likes of Placebo; they make you flail about in angst and despair. In a way that doesn’t seem self-pitying but feels like an anticipated catharsis. They manage to provoke all your troubles in a way that, if anyone else did it- you’d be massively pissed off. Frank’s Daughter caress your internal wounds and make you feel as if nothing else even matters. Maybe it is what you need; maybe it’s what we all need.

Song For The Witches is a delicate piece of art; the whole record in general is a gentle rocking of the soul. I’m not a massive fan (or really a small fan) of Radiohead, and I feel quite reluctant to state that Frank’s vocals are similar to Thom Yorke. He’ll probably get it a fair amount because the vast majority of Music “Journalists” are lazy and pretentious. Personally, I feel he has the vulnerability in his vocals that is found in the likes of Antony Hegarty. Vocally they don’t sound the same- but both make you connect to the music in such a heartbreaking way. This is music that just bares complete and utter soul. Soul music. Song For The Witches and Ugly Water are beautifully frail songs with a haunting atmosphere that is set to melt many hearts.

In the piece I wrote about Frank’s Daughter for Music Broke My Bones (here, have some shameful plugging: http://www.musicbrokemybones.co.uk/?p=8836 ) I likened the atmosphere they create to similar bands I really adore such as Deptford Goth and Wife. The kind of music you play late at night when you know the world is asleep, but slumber misses you out.

This debut record is one that as horrifically clichéd as it sounds, should not be ignored. It will heal souls, it will open minds and it will free those who feel trapped in the mundane aspects of their daily lives. And although many have said it about many records in the past (and those to come) The Sound Of A Heart Unravelling sounds like it was created from a band who are well into their career. It just proves that time means nothing; it is in the moment. It is truly beautiful. A perfect duo making perfect music to get you through; and to get through to you.

The Sound Of A Heart Unravelling is made up of soul-filled symphonies with dark moods and heartfelt lyrics. Every moment in all of the songs is rare and to be treasured. What you feel the first time you listen to it will be different to how you feel times after. Moments are created as old ones fade. Frank’s Daughter aren’t for certain kinds of people. They are just for those who want something more, and know it is out there; using music as a means to get there.

You can stream the record here: http://franks-daughter.tumblr.com/ and you can purchase it here: http://www.franks-daughter.com/shop.php