CASUAL DRAG: Revolution Will Eat Itself.

This should have been written weeks ago but we’re here now and that’s all that matters.

I’ve written about Casual Drag before, and my love for them is ridiculous. Now I get to write about their new one, Revolution Will Eat Itself and it’s a proper DIY Punk work of art. Do you need to play it loud? Yes. Will it make you want to trash your room and throw shit out the window? Absolutely. I wouldn’t expect anything else from them. They are one of the most exciting bands around and they are totally feral with their sound. This beautiful and passionate aggression in the songs is just a delight.

This record is one of those that make you wish you could immediately catch the band live. I know that they are well adored in their city of sweet, sweet Glasgow but the rest of us really need to experience the joy of a Casual Drag show. Until then, we play the songs as loud as we can and on repeat. Is there any other way to do it? Nah.

The record is made up of 5 songs to melt your face and ears- and you’ve got to remember that there’s only 3 of them in the band making this stunning racket. You can’t help but instantly love them with your first listen, and this record was so easy to love. Every single song is an anthem. An anthem for those of us who are fed up- and I’m sure there’s a lot of us out there! This record has a lot of attitude but you cannot compare it to anything else. The only other band I can think of that have the same bite are Bruise Control. Some of the songs you can scream along to, but don’t let that borderline Pop feel fool you at all- this band know exactly how to hit you between the eyes.

When you listen to the record, it’s hard to believe that this is their debut EP. They’ve nailed this sound, they’ve figured out their sound so easily and it just makes you so excited to hear more from them. Every single song on this EP deserves it’s place- no fillers here! Every song will move you and make you want to immediately go to a sweaty Punk show and throw yourself about whilst covered in your own drink and probably someone else’s!

Have a fun fact: Casual Drag were formed over a cigarette break by Richard and Dominic. They share a love for the Amazing Snakeheads (Dale Barclay forever) and IDLES; and you can hear it in their music- there’s this same ferocious sound that others may fear but it sounds SO good. It’s such a comforting sound. See, some people take comfort and safety in quiet and peaceful songs- I can’t do it. I’ve tried, and I can’t. When it’s as loud as Casual Drag- then all is okay. I feel I can focus. The songs are made to be blasted out live- those snarling and gnarly vocals, the slick bass and guitar and drums adding fuel to the fire- pure heaven.

I Like It is the one you probably have to play the loudest- the drums on this are wild. Matt is one incredible drummer, the way they play the drums is so wild. All 3 of them have this raw style and approach and I think I Like It is the song that really shows this. It’s just a perfect record all the way through, and sure you’ll want more- but we’ll get it soon enough!

This is one of the finest and loudest records you’ll hear all year; treasure it and let’s all hope they do a tour soon because lord knows we need it! I know I do!




A few years ago I started writing about a brilliant band from Glasgow called The Creeping Ivies. They were like The Cramps meets a Vincent Price film- effortlessly cool and eerie. I’m now super excited to write about Becca’s new band, The Raptors.

The Raptors have a really wild sound. There’s still a hint of The Cramps but there’s a real Rock’n’Roll sound that is found in my absolute idol, Johnny Thunders. There are only two songs (so far) but in those two songs, you can truly hear what a brilliant band The Raptors are.

The first song, Death Becomes Her definitely sounds like it was made for playing whilst wandering through a graveyard with a cloak of mist descending upon you. There is something really spooky about this song, and the band. The way they use this spookiness in their music is just so good. They keep you wanting more and more, but for now we just have to settle for these two songs. Death Becomes Her has this exceptional chant-like chorus that has you shouting the words back at them. Don’t worry if your neighbours tell you to be quiet, they’ll be doing the same in no time too. I love how great they all sound together.

Teen Witch sounds like it could have easily been on American Horror Story: Coven. It’s such a brilliant song, and I think for now I’ll call it as my favourite. Again it has a chant-like chorus. The Raptors have a sound that feels like a cult. They lure you in to what you do not know but are massively curious about. They take you some place where no one else has, and you daren’t go with anyone but The Raptors. They have this amazing way of luring you in and out of this creepy atmosphere. Where their song, Death Becomes Her makes you feel like you’re in a desolate graveyard- Teen Witch makes you feel like you are being hunted in a mist filled forest. Every single time you think you are close to escaping, one of them appears to cause you to lose sense of where you are. Before you know it, they’ve captured you. When you realise what has happened, you probably won’t mind and will wonder why you kept on running.

I am really excited to hear what else The Raptors have been working on. For now they are playing a few shows in Glasgow and Edinburgh, so if you’re lucky enough to live close by, then definitely go see them. I’m pretty sure their live shows will be wild.

There is something really special about The Raptors, and I think for me it is down to them having a Johnny Thunders & The Heartbreakers kind of sound. The sound they had was like a gang- them against everyone else. I get this from The Raptors, and I love that they in only two songs, have already given that impression. They most certainly have a united sound and each member of the band totally shines on Death Becomes Here and Teen Witch. Becca has such a distinctive voice, and I honestly cannot think of anyone else that sounds like her. She’s got such a strong voice, and it definitely needs to be played loud so you can pick up on how strong it is.

When Halloween comes around, play The Raptors super loud at your parties and ignore anyone knocking at your door. The Raptors are coming for you, so you might as well give in.




I’ve always believed that music should be somewhat terrifying. Whether it is similar to the frightening rage that is found in the likes of my beloved My Bloody Valentine or if it is done in a more gentle manner like The Long Wives; I want what I hear to scare me a little bit. I don’t know where this comes from, maybe from a young obsession with Nick Cave. His dark imagery in his lyrics is the same kind of genius that came from Poe’s pen. Troubled, dark and sinister. There’s another level to this, Marquis De Sade. The sexual perversion in is writing is uncomfortable but for the times he wrote it- it is nothing short of challenging. I have one of his books, but reading it on public transport means never holding the cover up so anyone can read the back of it. I want to hate myself for being in awe of his work, but I can’t. I just keep reading.

I should have written about Ela a few years ago when I first hear her music. I have bouts of being utterly lazy. I’ve not written in my notebook since July. Everything I had the intention of jotting down has gradually left my mind. I suppose it wasn’t important to start with. Ela Orleans is yet again another example as to why music from Scotland is astounding. From Shirley Manson to Bobby Gillespie; it is a place that just oozes talent from all over. Parts of England have certain sounds. The further North you go, the darker the sound. The better the sound, of course. However (with the exception of Glasvegas, The View and others) you can’t always tell with Scottish bands. That just proves how excellent they are. You already knew that didn’t you.

Ela Orleans reminds me of someone I admire- Alex Zhang Huntai aka Dirty Beaches. Seeing him live last year had a massive impact on me in ways I wasn’t aware of. Now when I go to shows I notice more than normal, I let it mean more than it used to. He has this powerful presence without even saying a word. His music on record is a pleasure to listen to. It’s a pleasure to listen to because it’s so different to anything I’ve ever listened to and I can’t pick up on what influences him apart from general life and the hunger to make music- that’s the same feeling I get when I listen to Ela.

Her voice resembles nothing like anything else I’ve ever heard. However she can convey torment in her voice like Billie Holiday did. Ela can rip right into the core of you with her voice, the words become hazy because the way she rings pierces through you. But then, on the other side of this, her voice can make you weep with how gorgeous it truly is. Maybe I’m feeling her music more because I’m ill (I’m losing my voice and I sound like a teenage boy’s a good job I’m not a big talker) and I’m swaying towards how her music makes me feel emotionally. Sorry, I don’t know what my excuse is for the rest of the time.

Her music makes you want to pack up your belongings and move to a city where nobody knows you. Where nobody who claims to know you can bother you. Until you get the guts to do so, all you can do is sit and listen to her music and live briefly in the moment through it.

I so desperately want to write thousands and thousands of words telling you all about Ela and why you need to listen to her music, but I can’t. She is one of those singers who you don’t really need to say a word about. When you listen to her music, you immediately become drawn in and you know you are listening to something truly special. Writing this is taking me back to how I felt when I first heard her music- it happens every single time I listen to her music. You keep falling for her music. It is honestly like looking at the one you love and finding new reasons as to why you love them and remembering why you love them. Ela’s music is something that obviously goes behind these words I have typed, anyone can see that. She’s the kind of singer I wish I could be, but I cannot sing. That’s alright though. I’m more than happy to have a voice like Ela’s being projected into my ears and cleansing my soul.




Soft Power Records have got a back catalogue that is on the same level as Sacred Bones to Art Fag. They have the weird and wonderful on their label. From Dirty Beaches split 7″ to Autumns, they are responsible (for the most part) for what I listen to on an almost daily basis. So it is with no surprise at all that they’ve sent me something else for me to fall hopelessly in love with.

This time, they’ve sent something they’ve never done before- a split LP. Knowing this is an entirely new thing made the whole listening process of the record much more exciting than most. This is a big deal for both bands and of course Soft Power Records.

The first half of the record belongs to The Wharves, and it’s ridiculous. They’re from London. They have a creepy late night alleyway danger feel about them. It’s the kind of music you’d imagine Jack The Ripper stalking the streets of Whitechapel to. It is entirely eerie but nothing short of brilliant. They do have a Garage rock atmosphere that floats throughout, but the thing that really stands out for me is the vocals. The vocals on Thick Syrup is just stunning, a brilliant way to start this LP. The vocals are on a different level. I’m not even going to try find a comparison because it will not work. But if you’re fans of September Girls and The Black Belles, then you’ll probably love The Wharves. Unhand Me is something that should be on Halloween playlists. Again, the vocals are divine but on this one they are slightly chilling. There’s a cryptic  feel that flows throughout and I think that is what instantly draws you in. I probably couldn’t switch it off even if I wanted to. The Wharves make music that sounds like it should have been in a Vincent Price film. They stir up the beast inside of you and unleash a thousand furies. Bloody brilliant.

Scotland is the home to fine music. From my hero Shirley Manson to The Jesus And Mary Chain to The Creeping Ivies to The Rosy Crucifixion. Emily from the band was once described in an interview as Patsy Cline’s evil sister. To be described like that is awesome, more singers should aspire to that. Her vocals have an attitude that is found in the likes of Faith from PINS to Alison Mosshart from The Kills. There’s this infectious power there that just lures you in. I feel as if I should be wearing a cloak whilst listening to them (I’m actually wearing Superhero and a band t-shirt. The band? Loom.) They have a ghastly vibe; and I firmly believe that if music doesn’t scare you even a tiny bit, then there’s no point. Most of the bands I listen to have sinister sound. I think this makes up for the fact that I’m far too sensitive/gentle for my own good at times. Even if I’m not, music makes me feel tougher than I am. It’s like when you listen to the Ramones and you feel as if you can take on the world- you just don’t care. The Rosy Crucifixion and The Wharves have come together, and has led to something truly memorable and beautiful being created. I’ve heard a lot of new music this year, but to hear two of the most exciting bands around on one record like this just, as a music lover, well it feels like Christmas but better. Sinners has an enchanting voodoo feel about it. You can imagine Screamin’ Jay Hawkins (if he was alive obviously) just creeping up and yelling some crazy shit.

Both bands have made something that would sound perfect in a film from say, the 1920s. If I was 15 years old hearing this, it would sure make me go out and learn to play the guitar and create something as thrilling as this. This is what I want to hear. This is what I want on the airwaves and television sets. This split LP is something that sounds like it is from another time and planet. Play it loud and let everything around you just spiral out of control.

The LP is out 25th November 2013 on Soft Power Records.

Stream it here: