FALSE HEADS.

5 11 2019

FH

 

It’s that wonderful time of year where we play, gun shot or firework. To drown out the exploding sounds (I really hate fireworks) I’m playing False Heads super loud. I can just about drown out the fireworks.

 When I lived in London, I heard of False Heads quite a few times, but I foolishly didn’t pay close attention. They probably played a shit ton of shows I could have gone to, but I can’t dwell on the past. Fast forward 3 years since they formed, and False Heads are most certainly one of the most exciting bands in the country and maybe one of London’s loudest bands. Their sound will get out all of your frustrations and disdain. There’s a slight Grunge like feel to their sound, but aside from that you can’t really lump them as anything but excellent.

 Their newest single, Fall Around come out on the 25th October. Initially I was going to write about the single, but they deserve way more than that. The new single is a heavy and raw song to really get stuck into, and to let False Heads suck you into this world they’ve created with their brutal sound that makes you feel like you’re in a pub brawl that’s spilled onto the street. I love the heaviness on Fall Around- that really heavy drum and guitar sound together is just divine, then you get the slick bass hitting you along with the vocals. It is such a perfect sounding song- if you listen to it after listening to previous songs you will massively hear how their sound has just continued to evolve and is still on this brilliant journey. They take you along for the ride, and it is such a joy to listen to.

 

 

Songs like Slease, Retina and Help Yourself were made to just lose your shit to. I’m annoyed at myself for never seeing them when I had the chance in London, but the thing with their music is that they make you feel you’re right in the midst of their live shows when you listen to them. I love Slease, and I think it’s one of the year’s most underrated gems. It’s got everything you’d want from a heavy sounding band. They have this captivating sound that just makes you want to turn it up a little louder, and to try see if you can actually make your ears bleed from the loudness. They’re that great, they’ll have you wanting to do dumb stuff.

Their debut record should be with us next year, and I reckon it’ll be something to truly treasure and pay very close attention to. False Heads have songs that are nothing short of anthems, and in a few years’ time they’ll be playing them to stadiums full of devoted fans. They have this glorious Post-Punk feel to their sound, but they give us something more. Something we may never have heard before; there is so much charm in their sound, and the lyrics are so easy to connect with. False Heads may only just be getting started, but they’ve won over a wealth of fans all over. You cannot deny just how great they are, and how a sound like this is so vital.

 

 

With new single Fall Around thrust into the wild now, there is really no telling how the debut record will sound like but I reckon it will consist of real heavy bruisers that will be destined to be played loud and screamed back at the band.

Iggy Pop and Danny Fields are fans of this trio, and if that isn’t enough to get your attention then I really don’t know what will.

*Photo by Neil McCarty





BAD BANGS.

30 10 2019

 

BADBANGS

 

Bad Bangs are an exceptional Garage Rock band from Melbourne. Their songs are made to make you move, maybe get a little emotional, a little drunk if you want and just have a good time to them. Their debut EP, Grow It Out came out last year and they recently released a new song called Too Much.

They may not have much about them online, but there’s enough to get you hooked good and proper. They have this Bluesy feel to their music, and they remind me a little of the Goddesses that are, L.A. Witch. They have something spooky about them, something really powerful and just captivating. Bad Bangs make the kind of music to lose your shit to, and their song Time is definitely one to go all out on. That instrumental towards the end is so grand and just exceptional. You can really imagine them going nuts to this live.

I really love that you can hear this DIY sound coming right through. All the songs are written (and sung) by Shelby. She’s got such a distinctive voice; it’s distorted in all the right places and it is so strong. She has so much power in her vocals, and her lyrics are just so relatable. You connect so easily with their songs, and this is part of the appeal. The band currently has Ben on bass and Tim on drums. On the EP, Monica Ireland was the drummer. That’s just a little bit of trivia for you.

 

 

Moody is their sun-kissed anthem. This is the song you waste your day to, and just take time out for yourself. Treat it as self-care if you want, but it’s the song that you absolutely soak up and let it take over your soul. This lo-fi sound is something I can’t get enough of, they really put their all into what they do, and you can sense that from the jump on this EP and it is apparent on their new song too. You can’t help but feel that their live shows are totally wild and inspiring. For now, I think Other Side might be my favourite from the EP, but Moody is truly something else. All I know is that with just one EP they’ve made a huge impression.

During the summer they released Crush which again, is another sun-kissed anthem. They have this stunning way of just making you feel like you’ve escaped to the beach and away from all of life’s troubles. The song is delicate in all the right places, but there’s this slight aggression on the guitar that compliments the vocals so well. Shelby is an incredible guitarist, and the way she and Tim sound together is so good. Mix that with Ben’s bass and you’ve got a dream sound on your hands. They truly are such an exciting band, and once you start listening to them- that’s it.

Bad Bangs have such a slick sound, and they sound like a band who have been doing this for decades. They have such a refreshing sound, and this is the kind of sound that just takes over your heart and soul, and whatever else you are willing to allow music take from you. Although there’s an EP and a couple of other songs, Bad Brains have really made their mark. I love how they have this classic lo-fi sound mixed with Phil Spector’s Wall of Sound feel; then they add something of their own that’s not been heard before, and it just makes you fall instantly in love with what you’re hearing.

 

 

I really hope we get to hear more from them, and somehow, they make it over to the UK and play some shows. Bands like this don’t come around often, and what Bad Bangs are doing is something remarkable. They take everything I adore about music and make something to just blow your mind in the most euphoric way imaginable.

These three musicians are nothing short of enthralling, and I hope they get you hooked on their sound like I am. Play loud!





BAMBARA: Soup Kitchen, Manchester 22nd October 2019.

23 10 2019

Image result for bambara band

 

I went to this show as someone who casually listened to Bambara; I left as someone who is now obsessed and in awe of what I witnessed in a room that should have been packed.

I think the best way to describe a Bambara show is wonderfully loud and chaotic. As soon as they ripped into their set, I immediately felt like I was watching The Birthday Party for the first time. They have the same raucous sound that is all over the place in the best way possible. I don’t want my music to sound polished or perfect- I want it to be noisy, all over the place and powerful. I got all of that and more from Bambara’s set. They put their absolute everything into their performance, and honestly, Reid Bateh is quite possibly one of the best performers I’ve ever seen. He absolutely puts all he has into the songs, and in a live setting you can truly see just how much this means to him. It’s like he has to get THIS out. I don’t know what “THIS” is exactly, and maybe it’s something we all have in us, but he gets it out in a way that is beautifully enthralling and terrifying at the same time.

Bambara aren’t a band for those wanting roses and sunshine. They are a band for those seeking something to cling to. They’ve toured with two bands that own my heart- IDLES and METZ. Imagine seeing that! It’d be like witnessing something so sacred, and spiritual. I had a great spot at this show, and maybe it was because it wasn’t sold out. It should have been sold out by the way. I could see everything, and I was so fascinated with drummer, Blaze. His style reminded me so much of one of my favourite drummers- Alex Robins. I loved that Blaze’s stage attire was shorts and cowboy boots- if that doesn’t define cool, then I don’t know what does. His style of drumming is intense and captivating. He’s the kind of drummer that a kid would watch and think, “I want to do that.” He made a 32 year old feel that way (me, by the way.) I love how the band all have this sense of solidarity when they play. It feels like a brotherhood (obviously that’s the case with Reid and Blaze!) and this tight sound they have just makes you completely hooked on every sound they make, and every word that Reid sings.

 

 

Songs like José Tries to Leave, and brand new song Serafina (which I think they had only played once before maybe?) were just magnificent to watch. With this possibly being the second time they performed Serafina, they nailed it perfectly. I love how Reid thrashing the microphone wire like an out of control lion-tamer, and he definitely reminds you of a very young Nick Cave when he was in The Birthday Party. This was probably one of the loudest shows I’ve been to at the Soup Kitchen- it wasn’t as loud as the times I saw The Jesus And Mary Chain (I couldn’t hear properly for 2 days, but I was stood right by the speaker so…it was to be expected!) Although the venue wasn’t packed, but to be honest sometimes it doesn’t matter you know. Sometimes it can feel like the whole world is there, and Bambara definitely made you feel that way. At times it felt intrusive as you witnessed them leave their absolute everything on stage, but bands that do this just have my complete respect. To be that open on stage is something to really appreciate and admire for sure.

I love how bassist, William completely lets go on stage. Sometimes you see bass players who are holding back and seem to be teetering on letting go, but William is unafraid and just makes you wish you were as cool as him. Bryan and Sammy are INCREDIBLE guitarists; they could easily have blown the amps with how loud they were, and take that with how grand Blaze’s drumming is- then you get the general idea of how wild and loud this show was.

There was something about this show that at the end, I felt like I had got what I needed. I felt some kind of release. I’m not sure what of. I mean today is 2 months since my Grandma died and I’m ready to go back to bed and spend the day crying. But last night, that gig gave me that feeling that you get from your favourite band. It was truly special for so many reasons. I urge you to see Bambara whenever and wherever you can. It’s not just a show, it’s an experience. An experience that will stay on your mind until the next time. Over and over.

 

 

Their set ended on Monument, and it was such a high to end on. Of course you wanted more, and you just wanted them to carry on for an eternity but this was just one of the most mesmerising shows I’ve ever been to. Bambara have been around for some time now, and these New York heroes are a band to become majorly obsessed with.

This was my first time seeing the band, and I definitely hope it won’t be my last. Their new record, Stray will be out in February. It’s their fourth record and I reckon it might just be their heaviest to date. I cannot wait to hear it, and can probably call it as one of 2020’s finest records.





HOORSEES: Major League of Pain EP.

16 10 2019

 

72485793_687130481769554_4211792694512451584_n

 

On Friday 18th October, Parisian band Hoorsees will be releasing their EP, Major League of Pain. This EP is made up of 6 songs to comfort you, make you feel alright with feeling low and providing a form of guidance when everything has gone a bit awry.

They are fronted by DR CHAN front man, Alex. If you’ve ever listened to DR CHAN, you will know that they have a real hyperactive Garage Rock sound. Their music makes you want to jump around and get into some light-hearted trouble. The tone in Alex’s vocals with Hoorsees is totally different; it is more mellow and little somber. It just shows us how brilliant he is. It is a totally different sound. Out of respect- no more comparisons.

The sound that Hoorsees have is one that throws you into a world of heartbreak, and every single step that comes with it. There are different stages, different types of heartbreak and Hoorsees delve into this very well and sensitively. The vulnerability in the lyrics especially on Boyhood and TV & Bad Sports just shows us how exceptional this band is, and how being this open is something to really back. Paris is truly home to some incredible bands, and musicians. Hoorsees are most certainly one of them and the beautiful romanticism in this record is so soothing and just a delight to listen to. It is calming in all the right places but will also break your heart. Infectious is such a beautiful song but my god it will rip you apart. It’s got the innocence of a first love to it, but at the same time you can apply the heartache to anything- it doesn’t have to be from a romantic stance. It’s such a beautiful song, and I love the sheer emotion in Alex’s voice on this. It’s a different side to what he can do vocally, and it is a different side to the band. A side I really hope they never leave because they do it so well.

 

There is a glorious distorted feel to the record, and if you’re a fan of music with a lot of heart and a wealth of emotion; you’ll probably love this record. Aside from their demos up on their Bandcamp page, this is their first proper release. The demos and the Major League of Pain EP are totally different, and in the few years that have passed between them, you can really hear a band that are sure of their sound and know exactly what they want.

 

 

I really love how you can feel that these songs are made to be played live. They carry a lot of emotion in them, and the way the vocals and guitars come together to send you off on this journey into their heartache is something to really appreciate and admire. There is something really special about bands from Paris, and France in general, you know. Hoorsees have this really big romantic feel to their sound and that’s what keeps you being drawn back in with every listen. Of course, you want more, but with just 6 songs they take you into their world and what a world it is. It is music to waste the day to, music to watch the world go by, skate to it, absorb in your surroundings- just soak up this blissed-out record.

I think at the moment for me, it’s all about the last track on the record- Horror Sees. I adore the bass on this, and how the drums give you this wave crashing sense. It’s a laid-back EP from start to finish, and I think this is the most relaxing song on the record. It’s one I’d definitely love to see them do live. I know they’ve got a pretty big tour happening in France so if someone could bring them to the UK, I’d really appreciate it!

These 4 friends truly know how to tug at your heartstrings; they gently take you into their secretive world. This lo-fi sounding record is covered in wonderful pop-like melodies that will stick in your head for days. It is a perfect record to just lose yourself in and kill time in a way that means something to you. It’s a laid-back EP with songs to just fit your mood; Merry Grime is the perfect song to capture this. Play this one loud and often.

 If you are lucky enough to live in France, then I urge you to go see them on tour and let me know all about it!

Tour dates are in the poster below:

tourdates

Major League of Pain is released this Friday via Crème Brulée and In Silico Records.





XENU & THE THETANS

12 10 2019

 

xenu

 

 

Here is something to invest in and play super loud: Xenu & The Thetans. You are welcome.

If you want fast and raw Punk, then get this record in your ears. Their debut record is everything you could possibly want from a Punk record; in fact, it is just everything you’d want from music. It is the kind of music you’d play to impress your cool uncle (basically, I’d play this record to my uncle and I’m pretty sure he’d love it, because he’s cool!) Every song feels like a smack in that face in the most euphoric way imaginable.

Xenu & The Thetans are a supergroup based in Mexico. Punk and Mexico go hand in hand, and the scene there should not be ignored. I’d go there if 1- I wasn’t scared of flying and 2- My passport wasn’t expired. I need to sort that, but I keep spending money on other things. I like to put things like this off because there’s always something better to do isn’t there. Anyway, the record. Yes.

 

 

I have no idea what the songs are about, but I’m not going to let that stop me from enjoying the record. Besides, hearing music in another language is just fine! This is the record you get drunk to and trash your room to, isn’t it? Guess my weekend plans are sorted. I jest, I’m going to sleep. A lot. Hopefully. What I love about this record is that I don’t feel like I’m listening to a band from now. I feel like I’m listening to a band that could have been buddies with the likes of Die Böslinge, Kraut or Bad Brains. They’ve got something about them that’s just effortlessly timeless and so, so cool. You cannot deny that Tee Crees Mejor Que Yo is probably one of the best Punk songs you’ve heard in a long time. It’s such a great record, and it’s probably a really great way to learn/improve on your Spanish.

You can always tell when a band plays with a lot of passion, and this band most certainly do. You’ve got one of the best humans around, Brandon Welchez ripping this record apart beautifully, and members from Davila 666 and Descartes A Kant (Johnny and Cristi) going apeshit on this record too. It is everything you’d want from a real Hardcore Punk record. Only a couple of songs go over the 2-minute mark, and it is enough time to just make you throw your body around in an insane way and probably smack someone in the face during it. Careless dancing- we’ve all done it. Xenu & The Thetans are the band you want to hear when you should really be heading home, but they pull you in and once they’ve got you- you’re done for. There is absolutely no denying just how excellent this record is. It’s fast, ferocious and loud- it’s the Punk record we all need. Like I mentioned earlier, it really doesn’t sound like a record from 2019 and that’s by no means a bad thing at all.

This tough and raw sound just makes you fall in love with the sound instantly. Every single song sounds like it should be chanted back at the band. Alternatively, you can just do it at home and have a great time. There’s only one way to play this record, and that’s loud. Super loud to the point where you wonder if you’ll ever hear again. You know how it is. The singer of this insane band, Julián Name keeps up ferociously and effortlessly with the intense drumming of Cachi. I love the sheer colossal sound on this record, and how you can hear influences from their own bands, and like I mentioned, Bad Brains etc. too. The songs are fast and powerful; a true Punk record to let blister your ears.

 

 

Sometimes I just hear something, and it makes me want to carry on writing about music; Xenu & The Thetans have created a record to keep going back to and appreciating every single time. Nadie Por Quién Morir is one my favourites to play on repeat and louder than the others, I love the slickness to it and how it just sounds like a drunken bar brawl. This record could have worked in the (greatest film of all time) The Warriors- it’s got that feel to it. I just really love this record.

Anyway, I’ve gone on enough about this record. Go listen to it, religiously.





THEE WINDOM EARLES: Mai Tai Pink Eye.

8 10 2019

 

TWE

 

 

If you’re looking for something extra creepy, and extra trashy- then you’ve GOT to listen to Manchester’s finest Thee Windom Earles. They are a fascinating band that make you feel like you’ve stepped into some weird Horror B-Movie. They are off the wall, in your face and just brilliant. Think along the lines of Captain Beefheart and The Cramps, then you’ll get it.

 Where do you begin with a band like this? I know nothing about them, all I know is that they are from the greatest city in the world (Manchester) and they make the kind of music that would even move us fellow introverts. They’ve got a really cool style, and this Psychobilly sound is just exceptional. You cannot help but move when you listen to them, and you cannot help but play their music super loud.

 Their debut record, Mai Tai Pink Eye came out in February this year. I know, I’m late with this one. But it’s such a great record. You don’t feel like you’re listening to a band from 2019. There is something nostalgic about this record- they’ve got every essence of The Cramps, but they don’t do it in a rip-off style at all. They take this creepy Rock ‘n’ Roll sound and make it theirs. If The Cramps came from Manchester, they’d probably sound like this. Songs like Sex Pizzeria are MADE to be played super loud and Oom Sha Cha too. Just play the whole record loud at least 5 times a day. You’ll feel better for it.

 

 

 

Mai Tai Pink Eye is not only probably the best name for a record you’ll hear this year, but it’s also got a such a tight sound. The production is flawless, and the sound is beautifully unruly. It is the best form of chaos possible- it’s basically a band making a lot of noise and having a great time doing so. I’m having a great time listening to it! It is such a thrilling record. Bands like Thee Windom Earles and Night Shades who are making their own style of Rock ‘n’ Roll right now; I’d love to see both play a show together. It would be insane. To hear a sound so refreshing on this record just makes you fall in love with music over and over again. Songs like Lunchtime Munchtime and Freight Elevator are just these incredible pieces of real Rock music. There’s the Garage Rock thrown in, there’s the effortlessly cool and weird style that lures you in. The vocals are delivered with this infectious energy that is happening throughout the whole record. I cannot praise this monster of a record enough! You cannot help but play every single song to death. It’s only 9 tracks long, but those tracks are enough to have you hooked in every single way. You’ll be having dreams about this record.

 Lick The Flipper has this awesome Surf Rock feel to it, but it also has something a little eerie/sinister about it. I just love how the band mess with your head. The only thing that’s consistent is how brilliant they are- everything else is a pleasant surprise. You just have no idea how the next song is going to hit you. I think this is the song I’m obsessed with the most (for now) it’s definitely a stand-out song on this record, but truth be told, the whole record is an underrated masterpiece. Manchester is truly home to some amazing musicians and bands- Thee Windom Earles absolutely back this notion up for sure.

 When you listen to this record you cannot help but let it take over your soul. You feel like it has corrupted you in the best way, and all good music makes you feel this way somehow. Imagine being about 14/15 years old, and finding a band like Thee Windom Earles and just letting this sound blow your mind, and you end up starting your own band? That’d be so cool. Instead, as a 32 year old, I’m just in awe of the band and I’m so glad they exist. I’m so glad I found them. Just when I think I couldn’t love this city even more, something like this happens! I think it is safe to say that Mai Tai Pink Eye is probably the year’s most underrated record. It’s got everything you could possibly want from a pure Rock ‘n’ Roll record.

 

 

 

So, there you have it- if you’re looking for something to shake them bones of yours or to just blow your mind, Thee Windom Earles are 100% the band for you. Let them take you on a weird trip- it’s on you if you come back down to earth or not.





FREEZ: Always Friends.

1 10 2019

 

freez

 

This Friday sees the release of Italy’s finest, FREEZ’s debut record. A record that will transport you back to the summer and give you some much needed warmth. I’ve written about FREEZ before, and to now write about their debut record is something I’m really proud to do. They’re one of the most exciting bands around, and just make you fall in love with music all over again and again.

Always Friends is a really exciting record; it has everything you would want from a Surf/Garage Rock. If you love bands like Wavves and DIIV- then you’re going to really love this record. It is such a feel-good body of music, and they’ve honestly created something worth treasuring here. It may be their debut record, but it most certainly does not sound like it. It sounds like a record from a band who have been around for such a long time, and that this is their fourth record or something. They have such a strong and established sound, again it is a record to play constantly.

It is such an enjoyable record, and I hope it is one that brings them over to the UK to show us just how great they are. Always Friends is a record to do nothing and everything to; you can play it whilst on the way to work, or at home doing nothing. Wherever and whenever you play it, it will just make you feel good. With so much shit going on in the world we need bands like FREEZ to make it all a little bit easier and they most certainly do that on this record. I can definitely say that this is one of the best records you will hear this year. It has so much wisdom, youth and joy. You cannot help but feel better when you play this record. It’s got that beautiful Surfer feel to it, and sometimes when bands try to grasp this sound, they end up sounding like everything that’s been done before but FREEZ nail it. They make it their own. There’s the occasional snarl in the vocals that add some bite to the songs, and I love that. It is just a real pleasure to listen to and play super loud!

 

 

The whole record is made up of songs that could be singles and make the band just take over the world. Songs like Bleeding Skies, Heads and Soul are just perfect, but please be assured that every single song on Always Friends deserves its place. Every single song fits perfectly; they’ve crafted this record with so much thought and care. There are no fillers on this record, and that alone makes it such a great listen. Basement is the one you need to play extra loud and soak in.

You’ve got your sun-kissed anthems on this record, and they’re the ones you’ll cling to as the days get shorter and darkness comes earlier than what we’re used to. They provide this warmth and soul that just makes you feel really soothed. It’s the kind of record you’d relax to but also probably blast out at a party. FREEZ are truly a remarkable band who take you on a gorgeous blissed out journey on this record, and it just blows your mind how young they are, and they have perfected such a great sound. Then again, they’re Italian and we know what we’re doing!

I really love that with this record, you can shut your eyes and you can be almost anywhere in the world. You could be on a beach or you could just be hanging out at home. A great way to listen to this record is to just play it through headphones and close your eyes. Right now, it’s a bit difficult for me to pick one song that standouts the most because it really is a phenomenal record, but I think I’m going to mention Soul again. That’s the one I keep going back to, but honestly, the whole record is nothing short of perfect. As far as debut records go, this is definitely up there as being one of the best. I really hope this record exposes FREEZ to new fans across the world so they can show everyone just how great they are. As I mentioned, the songs just fit perfectly together, and I love how Soul flows beautifully into Waiting For which a contender for best song on the record! The whole record is perfect to laze about to, but don’t think for a second that FREEZ are lazy. Oh no! They are one of the most hard-working bands around, and they’ve already toured round Italy a bunch of times. Now it is time that they came to the UK and blow us away with their live shows.

 

 

Irrespective of the kind of music you’re into, FREEZ have made something here for everyone. You cannot ignore how fantastic this record is, and how on their first full length record they have created something so powerful and memorable. It is a divine listen, and I hope you become obsessed with it like I have.

Always Friends is released this Friday via Wild Honey Records.