METZ: Atlas Vending.

23 09 2020

Like a steamroller over your body; the brand-new record by METZ will crush you and leave you gasping for more. 10 songs that will bust you in the chops and you will be grateful for it.


Atlas Landing is peak METZ, and this means it is beautifully loud. A shit ton of rage, passion and this urge to devour any and everything in your way. Every single song on the record will deafen you and corrupt you in ways you’ve been longing for. The only downside to this record is that it makes you wish you could go to a METZ show, and given the state of the pissing world right now, we have no idea when that will be. If you’ve ever been to a METZ show, you will know just how incredible it is and how these 3 beautiful human beings leave the venue completely annihilated, just how it should be done. But, this is about the record.


A few listens in, and I can safely call this as the most vital record of the year. The Mirror and Hail Taxi are my favourites at the moment, but that can change mainly because this record is too perfect to single one or two as favourites. It’s a masterpiece. METZ have never made a bad record, I genuinely don’t think they can do anything other than incredible to be honest. They are consistently phenomenal, and they blow my mind every single time. Sub Pop has been their home from the start pretty much, and if you go back and listen to their previous records you will hear a band that have always had a solid sound and vision to stick with. They have their own sound and it towers anything else you’ve ever heard. Atlas Landing is full of songs to just unleash your own hell to. Do whatever you want so you can feel free when you play this record. Every record is a leap into their minds and it is the most personal thing a band can do. METZ do it in an effortlessly slick way.


Draw Us In is THE big song. Everything about this one just screams being able to let everything go around you, and finding some inner peace. Take it where you can. Maybe you need to lose your mind in order to find it, or some shit. I don’t know. Alex has such a distinctive voice, and I love that he makes you feel like you are part of this world he’s lured you into with Chris and Hayden. It’s menacing, it’ll keep you on edge and you will love every single twist and turn. Sugar Pill is a prime example of this, and again, it’s another moment on this record where they all show us how exceptional they are. Trust me, if you’re wanting something to get rid of your blues or to make you feel SOMETHING- get this record when it comes out on the 9th. It is a record that will get you right in the soul. Let it take you over in all ways imaginable.


This is their 4th record, and I love that Atlas Vending makes you feel like you’ve discovered METZ for the first time and you know, for some it might be. If it’s your first time listening to them- welcome. It’s such a great record. The production is yet again sublime and that really comes into focus on Framed by the Comets Tail. My god this is METZ at their absolute best. This record is just a gorgeous piece of noise that you cannot get enough of. Every single song will have you on edge in the best way possible, and if Parasite doesn’t scare you a little bit, then I think you’re listening to the wrong record.

So, there you have it, Canada’s finest METZ have yet again given us something to treasure and find comfort in. I’ll probably use this record as a safety net or something. METZ aren’t a band that you can label, and why on earth would you want to? All you need to know is that they’ve done it again with record number 4 and made another record that is out of this world.

Alex, Chris and Hayden- thank you. You’ve made this year less shitty!





BAD DOD: Yikes!

18 04 2020

 

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Nothing makes you wish you could go to show like finding a band from the other side of the world, who just blow your mind and you wish they would tour closer to home. Clinging onto some form of hope as all the shows I was going to go to this year get rescheduled. I’m not the only one, and that makes it easier.

 Right from Singapore we’ve got incredible band called BAD DODD. These guys make a lot of noise, and yesterday they put out their record Yikes! I think it might be their debut, but I’m not so sure. Irrespective of what record it is, it is brilliant. It’s like Grunge meeting Garage Rock then going right off into space and creating something insane. The vocals are something else, but musically too this band are stupidly great. There’s this powerful tone in the vocals where you can really pick up on every feeling, and truly connect with the songs. Ascended reminds me of hearing the In Utero record by Nirvana all over again (I’m not the world’s biggest fan of Nirvana but that record is one of the best of all time) and it’s got something about it that screams out every ugly feeling you’ve got, then forcing yourself to let it go. I LOVE this song, and I’m calling it as my favourite on the record. I know nothing about this band, but I can tell you right now that Yikes! is one of the most powerful records of the year; there is something really special about this record and the sheer rawness on every single song just makes it a joy to listen to.

 

 

There’s a brilliant DIY feel to this record, and it just makes you appreciate bands like this a lot more. I love how every song just feels like a huge riot in the brain. Feel Nothing Yet and Outta My Brain are the songs that you’d definitely expect to make the crowd go apeshit when they do this live, and it just makes me wish that they’d play some shows over here. One day, one day. Clinging onto something to keep going, right? That’s all we can do. But fucking hell! This is a phenomenal record and with every listen this brutal beauty is fast becoming one of my favourites of the year. They are a band to definitely pay close attention to.

 The aggression on the record is so fast and just makes you want to trash everything and throw it out the window. You can really hear how great they are as musicians, and that is something that you pick up on instantly on this record. There’s no bullshit here or showing off at all- they’re a great band, and this record is nothing short of a fine piece of art. If you’re wanting soppy ballads, then go elsewhere. This record is made up of powerful anthems to just blast out as loudly as possible, and to scream along to even louder. Me Gusta is a self-deprecating number that just makes you go back and wallow in teen angst for a while, but don’t regard this as a bad thing- it gives you a kick, and it’s a great song. The whole record feels like a release of built up tension, and it is done in an effortlessly cool manner. You can imagine how insane and gnarly their live shows are as soon as you hear this record, and if it is their debut- then that’s a lot of power to have instantly.

 BAD DOD have unleashed a monster on Yikes! and it’s a real joy to listen to. Everything from the production, the way they play together to the way the songs flow so nicely into each other is just a delight to the ears. This isn’t going to be a record that you listen to every once in a while, it is one to become hugely obsessed with. The record ends with Geezer, and again is another example of why this band are probably intense and insane during their shows. The record stops there, and you can either pause and go back, or just get back into it right away because you need that feeling to hit you all over again.

 

 

Yikes! is a mighty fine record, and every single song on this record is worth your time and money. It is most certainly a record to play as loud as you (and your neighbours) can stand. If you’re looking for a record that can unleash a thousand frustrations and more, then this is the record for YOU.





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





DIIV: Deceiver.

6 10 2019

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Just to make it clear before I go into a possible nonsensical rant about how great the new DIIV record is, I just need to be clear that this is their record of their career. We can dwell on past records if we want, but trust me- this is the record of their career.

The record opens with the glorious and soothing, Horsehead. It’s like early RIDE but with My Bloody Valentine heaviness (Sonny Diperri produced it, so there you go!) It is such a powerful start to the record, and when it kicks in- it really gets you in the gut. It is most certainly my favourite opening on a record this year. It has so much determination and beauty in it. It is 5 glorious minutes of heaven. The remaining 9 songs have a lot to live up to. Fortunately I have utter faith in DIIV and know that this record is perfect from start to finish.

The 10 songs on this poetic and soulful record is a proper headphone experience. You have to make sure your first listen to this record is via headphones, and maybe your second too. But when you are ready, play it so the world can hear. Soak in that beautiful reverb and distorted vocals. Let the reverb take you on this captivating journey, and don’t let go of wwhatever the record makes you feel.

 

 

Deceiver is a record that is an ode to recovery, acceptance and the desire to do, and be better. I won’t delve into Zachary’s personal life as it isn’t the place, but if you’re a fan of DIIV you will know the struggles he has had and what it took to make this record. Of all their records to date, Deceiver is the most exposed and vulnerable. Zachary’s voice at times on this record (especially on Like Before You Were Born) his vocals have the same gentle tone to it like Daniel Johns. I absolutely adore his vocals on this, and it sounds like a sweet lullaby. His vocals have always been soothing, but on this record he’s truly outdone himself. The whole band have outdone themselves, and I can definitely say that this is one of the most important records of the year. One listen, and you’re just hooked. In the 44 minutes that this record has you for, you feel like you are floating through time and space. DIIV take you on this gorgeous journey where it is okay to be completely open and brutally honest. I mean, it is anyway but some think it isn’t but whatever.

There is so much darkness on this record, but the way it has been produced and put together makes you put it to one side, and you see and hear different sides of this record. Like I mentioned, it is a really vulnerable record with some tense subject matter but it’s done in a way that makes you just connect. It’s a record that is easy to love and completely connect with. One of the songs that Zachary has spoken about is Skin Game and how it is a dialogue between two characters, and when you dissect the lyrics and take them in, you truly pick up on this. For me, the chorus is so powerful; “Fighting to get through the door, but I can’t live like this anymore. They gave us wings to fly, but then they took away the sky.” Given what Zachary has been through, you can picture him having the conversation with himself or just anyone who has/is struggling with addiction or any form of demon. It’s a tough listen, but the beauty in the record allows you to just massively respect the band for being this open.

I’ve gone back and forth with trying to pick a song that resonates the most with me, and I think I’m going to have to side with Between Tides. One line on this song just seems to have stuck with me more than most, and quite possibly more than any song I’ve heard all year. “I’m just waiting for the storm to die out” it is so simple and to the point, and sometimes that is all you need. There is so much sadness on this record but there is also so much hope. I think this line just sums it up. It’s the acceptance of how bad things are, yet knowing it may just pass. It has to pass. I guess that’s the kind of thing I need to hear right now. My storm may never pass, but I have to wait it out. I’ve got no other choice.

 

 

DIIV have made the record of their career; the songs Zachary and Colin have written together are just masterpieces. They are the purest form of poetry, and the most hard-hitting songs we may hear all year. The production is nothing short of divine. It is a heavenly body of art, and I cannot wait to see this record live (providing the dates don’t sell out before I get a ticket!) I have loved DIIV since the start, and I am so utterly proud of what they have done on this record, and how unafraid they have been to push themselves on this. They have absolutely outdone themselves on this record. I have never heard Ben, Colin, Zachary and Andrew sound so good and so together. This is such an important record for many reasons. Acheron closes the record, and if you ever wanted to hear what a phenomenal group of musicians sound like- then soak up this 7 minute beauty. It will leave you covered in goose-bumps and in awe of what you have heard.

If you’ve never listened to DIIV before- start from the beginning then work your way on to Deceiver and you will hear just how much they have grown, and developed a sound that is so sacred to them.

Put your headphones on, turn the lights out and play Deceiver until you feel calm again. It’s a record for the soul; a sacred listen that you cannot help but lose yourself in completely, and utterly.





GHUM: The Coldest Fire EP.

28 06 2019

 

 

I want to start this by saying I am going to compare my excitement for this record to when I first heard TwoFiftyFour. Anyone who knows me, or has read anything I’ve ever written knows that this band are massively important to me for so many reasons. It’s that kind of excitement that a kid gets on their birthday; it hits you right in the gut. GHUM are quite possibly, for me, the most exciting band around right now. They have this utterly gorgeous moody sound that you just get lost in, and you know what? It doesn’t matter if you don’t get found.

The EP starts with the powerful Saturn. The bass is what gets you on this, with the drums merging into it. Then the guitar comes in with this infectious riff. Then we are hit with the ethereal vocals. It’s the perfect way to open up this EP. I love the spookiness in this, and it just makes you immediately want more. It has you hooked. GHUM are the kind of band that once you listen to; that’s it. Nothing can touch them. This is how I felt, and still feel about TwoFiftyFour. It’s that heavy sound mixed with something really eerie. I love the sheer intensity GHUM’s music, and I honestly cannot wait to see them next month here in Manchester.

 

 

1000 Men is THE song. It’s so big and so intense. It’s the lyrics, it’s the vocals, it’s the hypnotising sound that just gets you. With this song, you can really imagine it being used in a film or something you know. It’s got that bite to it that just makes you pull really weird faces because you’re all, “Did they just do that? Did the vocals really make that sound? Did the drums really just…holy shit!!” That’s basically how it is when you listen to this one. It’s a beauty. It’s my favourite. I cannot narrow down why, but I just love how it’s got a really deep sound to it. I’ve seen GHUM be compared to Warpaint (which is pretty damn cool!0 and I hear it on this one. It’s like Warpaint meets Melvins. Basically, two bands I am obsessed with. I’m fine with this. The more I listen to this song, the more I can feel my obsession for this band grow. I cannot wait to hear this live, I really can’t. This is the one I’m really excited for. I feel I could write an essay on this song.

I haven’t touched on Get Up because you should know that one by now. The EP ends with In My Head. It’s beautiful, of course. What else would you expect! This record just leaves you wanting more. Four songs isn’t enough, of course but whatever comes next is again just going to blow us all away. In My Head has some really hard-hitting lyrics, and I think it is one of those songs that you play alone. In fact, this is the kind of record that you play through headphones with no one else around. That’s exactly what I’m doing now (I got to work early so I could write this up.) You can hear all different layers in this song; it’s got vulnerability in all the right places and it has this magnetic intensity in the vocals. I honestly cannot praise this record and band enough, but I clearly will try! In My Head has that chilling sound to it that has the potential to spook you- but once you get over that (and you will, immediately!) you can truly hear something really mind-blowing.

The Coldest Fire is nothing short of perfection. With just four songs, GHUM have fully exposed their sound in a way most would hope to do with their debut full length record. They are a band that need to be heard. Whether it’s on your way to work, or laying wide awake at 4am because sleep doesn’t want to be your friend- they are band that will just reinforce every single reason as to why you love music, and why we need bands like GHUM.

 

 

The Coldest Fire is out right now, via Everything Sucks Music. GHUM are also playing a few shows next month. They’re playing London’s finest venue, The Shacklewell Arms on the 13th July, and are playing all over the UK including The Castle here in Manchester on the 15th. They are also playing The Waiting Room in London in October.

Buy the EP right NOW, learn the songs, fall in love with them and come see them on tour.