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!





BASIC SHAPES: Clockwork Organs.

2 07 2020

I have too much spare time that I have seem to have filled by playing FIFA as soon as I get home from work. I could be doing other things such as going to bed as soon as I get home (yes, it is acceptable to go to bed at 5.30pm, never question it) but FIFA takes priority. Music has slipped, sort of. I’ve not listened to much as it makes me sad not knowing when I’ll next go to a show. But anyway, there’s a wonderful French band called Basic Shapes that are here to kill your blues. Listen up!

Their newest EP, Clockwork Organs came out last week and it’s a really stunning record. It reminds me a little bit of Richard Hell mixed with The Buzzcocks. Basically, it’s a bloody great record and again just reinforces my love for French Garage Rock bands. There’s this beautiful energy on the songs and I love the urgency in most of the songs, and this is so clear on No Creep. It’s a real rowdy number that just gets you going. The songs are short and to the point; there’s no messing about here. Basic Shapes are here to tell you what they think and feel without taking 10 hours to make their point. We have the time to listen, that’s for certain, but sometimes you just need something that’s punchy and grabs you instantly.

There’s been a lot of great records that have come out so far this year, and I guess some could be cynical in thinking some get overlooked. Bands like The Vacant Lots and Fontaines D.C. (okay this isn’t out yet but whatever!) have put out (or about to) some of the strongest records of the year. Jehnny Beth has put out a glorious solo record that feels like an ethereal out of body experience. Then you’ve got bands like Basic Shapes who just go headfirst into chaos. Burning Flats and Night Train are such great songs, and they just make you crave going to shows so badly. Your bones start to turn to jelly and your mouth turns dry; you get the sweats. You just want to see a show. Badly.

Homeless Walk has slight Reggae hints flowing through it, and I love how this song just messes with everything you’ve heard so far. It’s definitely one of my favourites because it just takes a hard left at what you’ve heard so far. Then they go right into MYOB which is just a rowdy and manic number. It’s such a great record, and even thought they formed in 2018, this record sounds like something from a band that have been at it for years. There’s something about MYOB that reminds me of New York Dolls. It’s part the vocals and part the guitar.

The record ends with the 7-minute delight that is Night Train. This is a euphoric piece of art that just needs to be heard by everyone. Play it to anyone you know. Play it loud. Right in their face. Or maybe do it when social distancing fades away if it ever happens. It is such a tense song and the buildup, the crashing of the drums and the way the guitar sounds like an earthquake is just brilliant. It’s an effortlessly slick song, and the last 3 minutes and 30 seconds make you feel like you’ve stepped into a different universe. It feels like a totally different song, but they do it in such an unbothersome manner. It’s such an incredible listen. The vocals resemble a whisper almost on the last part of the song. You can imagine this being what they end their shows on. When those whispers are eventually taken over by the music, getting louder and louder. More intense with every second, flipping back to how the song started. It is SO GOOD! The whispers turn back into yells, and it is done so perfectly. If you’re someone who doesn’t listen to records in order- start with this one. Then maybe end on it also because it is THAT good.

Clockwork Organs is an impressionable listen and will definitely stick with you. You’ll feel exhausted after you first listen to it because it’ll take all your energy (in a good way) but you’re still ready to keep on going and to keep on listening to this mind-blowing record.





THE VACANT LOTS: Interzone.

26 06 2020

There’s no better feeling than that excitement of a band you absolutely adore releasing a new record. I’ve had a copy of the new record by The Vacant Lots for a couple of months now, and it’s been so difficult to not write about it until now. But it’s worth the wait; the record is astounding and will just blow you away.

If you’re looking for something to securely take you into a different universe, with the safe reassurance that you’ll never be able to leave, then Interzone is the record for you. Songs like Into The Depths and Party’s Over fully show us why TVL are one of the best bands around, and their electrifying sound is something to truly treasure. This is their first release on Fuzz Club Records, and given the amount of exceptional records that Fuzz Club have put out, it’s only right that TVL did so too.

Rescue was our first taste of the record, and it was the perfect way to get us to fall in love with the new sound they have created. It is is such a phenomenal record that oozes tense build-ups, dramatic sounds and hypnotising vocals. The vocals on Rescue are captivating, and Brian’s vocals are so strong on this record. Jared’s guitar on this record again sound like a beast. They both have this effortlessly cool way of creating their own noise, and you’d be hard-pressed to find anything better than this!

Interzone crosses all styles and will mess with your head in the best way possible. You will want to hear this record at 3am when everything is quiet and your brain won’t switch off. The comfort of this record will give you everything you need, and more. I strongly advise you to listen to Fracture on your own and through headphones. The same goes for Party’s Over. These two songs are beautiful in all ways imaginable. For me, Party’s Over is my favourite right now on the record and I also love how gentle Brian’s vocals are on Fracture- that’s another reason as to why it is a joy to listen to through headphones. Jared’s guitar on this is tamer than normal, but this more relaxed sound just shows us why they are both exceptional musicians.

The big question. Record number 3- is it their best yet? Yes. A huge YES. I’m obsessed with everything they’ve done, and continue to do but there is something about this record that towers over previous releases. There is something about this record that just feels more sacred, and you know, it could be down to what is going on in the world. There could be many reasons as to why, but I can promise you that this record is so beautiful, so gentle but ferocious in all the right places. The times where Brian’s vocals are gentle and where Jared annihilates the guitar- when these two worlds collide, that’s when it kicks off. That’s when you know you’ve not only found an amazing band but also one of the most exciting (and most vital) records of the year.

The lyrics are poetry, and the music is like a dream. Interzone is such a gorgeous record; it will heal the parts of you that you’ve neglected. It’ll also make your record collection look cooler! Every song on this 8 song masterpiece is a work of art. I love how Station goes into Party’s Over. The way it just gently slides into the last song is so beautiful. You feel like the record is a whole journey into something you can’t quite explain, then as Party’s Over hits, that’s when your body starts to wake up. Maybe your mind too. You come alive again, in a totally different way. The essence of this record feels like rebirth or something. The slick change in style and sound on this record is divine, and it’s something you keep falling in love with on every listen. I’m utterly in love with Party’s Over, and I’m pretty sure I can call it as one of my favourite songs that Jared and Brian have ever done. I love the sorrow in it, I love how it could be a dark song but it can also be full of hope. You can take it however you want, and that’s why I love this song and why this record is a masterpiece. It’s their masterpiece, but to be honest, everything they do is a work of art to me anyway.

None of us know when we will see the bands we love perform live again, but we have the music. We have the new records, and the new music can spur us on. This is what we needed, this is what I needed. Interzone is quite simply, a vital listen.





CLOUD FACTORY: Cloud Factory #1.

20 06 2020

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In a few weeks’ time, the finest Garage Rock band from Toulouse will be releasing their debut EP. The EP is being out by the reliably great, Howlin’ Banana Records who have put out a lot of records that I love, and they’ve done it yet again with Cloud Factory.

The band are made up of formers members of Noir City and Cathedrale; and if you know your French music, you’ll know that this is a pretty cool thing to happen. They’ve com together to create some feel-good music, and right now we need that. There’s a lot of joy in their music, and this carefree sound is really what gets you hooked.

The EP, Cloud Factory #1 is a perfect glimpse into what is to come from this band and how this new sound will blow us all away. It’s a really refreshing listen and the band have so much promise. If live music were something we could indulge in right now, there’s no telling just how great their shows would be. But for now, we wait. Whilst we wait, we can cling onto the EP.

Amnesia opens up the EP and is their current single, but don’t let it make you think it is the highlight of the EP. Oh no! You see, the EP is made up of beautiful moments; and one of my favourites has to be Alice’s vocals on Dead Bodies. For some it’s a pretty morbid name for a song, but her vocals have this Bjork like fragility to it. However, Cloud Factory aren’t a band that you can link another to, they are effortlessly quirky and cool, and it really shines through on this EP. The sound is so new and just a delight to revel in. I know I usually listen to music that’s a bit heavier, but this is such an enjoyable listen. If you’ve got a lot on your mind, you can definitely take a load off whilst listening to this record.

My one gripe? There’s only 5 songs! I want more, but I always want more when it comes to music but like I’ve mentioned, it is such a strong introduction to the band and even if you are familiar with their previous bands, you don’t pick up on that at all on this record. They are exceptional musicians, and I really like the way Ben’s bass sounds alongside Bruno’s drums. Sometimes it can feel like one is competing to be louder than the other, but this doesn’t happen at all on this record. They are all equally heard and enjoyed. There’s a lot of rage on the song No Data, which might be why it’s my favourite for now. I’ll change my mind of course!

Talk Too Much and Try are excellent too, and the joyful noise that Cloud Factory give us with this record and on those two songs in particular is just a delight to listen to. As someone who does tend to sway towards more louder sounds, I can safely say that this EP is a great listen and is the perfect introduction to a band that deserve to be heard, and to be huge. It’s a real feel good record, and ideal for those long summer evenings. Even if we have to stay indoors for now. Also, this record is another that fully backs up my idea that French Garage Rock bands are sublime.

Cloud Factory #1 will be released via Howlin’ Banana Records on 3rd July.





DRUG HUNT.

10 06 2020

Right from the mean streets of San Diego and right into your ears are a band called Drug Hunt. Looking the band name up may lead to weird results, and probably things that aren’t safe for work but when you get to what you want, you fast realise you’ve stumbled upon a band you have no idea how you made it this far without.

If like me you are madly in love with bands like Melvins, OM, Nick Cave and The Bad Seeds, Bambara- then you’re going to be really excited over Drug Hunt. Their sound is heavy, brutal, dark and poetic. They have such a unique style that just blows you away with every listen. Their self-titled EP consists of 4 songs that will twist and turn their way into your mind, corrupt your soul and leave you feeling very strange afterwards. Nothing will feel the same afterwards. Initially I wanted to focus on the EP but the more I listen to their music, the more I’m inclined to basically write a love letter to the band.

Drug Hunt have a heavy Psychedelic sound, and they have that Jim Morrison poetic feel to the vocals/lyrics. Imagine if Jim Morrison was still alive and joined the Melvins. That’s basically Drug Hunt but my analogy doesn’t do the band justice at all. The Tower is about 6 and a half minutes long, and it then slides into the euphoric 5-minute wonder that is, The Well. The EP is beautifully crafted, and the way the songs flow into each other is mesmirising. The songs were made for you to escape deep into, to just ignore reality and go right into their world.

The songs on this EP are mighty and deafening. They are beautifully terrifying; you cannot help but keep going back for more and more. Their sound is everything I want from music- it is uncomfortable and leaves you on edge. I don’t want something to make me feel safe, I want to listen to something that makes me feel a little bit on edge. Drug Hunt do this in such a grand way. Another band that remind me of this are Italy’s finest, Sonic Jesus. Sometimes it is the uncomfortable sounds that provide the most comfort, and you definitely get this from Drug Hunt.

The five of them in this band all play a vital part in messing with your head in the most wonderful way imaginable. The guitar on The Altar for the last minute or so will make you want to weep it is THAT good. There’s a lot of heart and soul in this band, and it comes across so perfectly on the EP. It’s a real joy to listen to, and to just get totally wrapped up in. I love bands that aren’t scared to push themselves, and I love when they do that to the listener- exposing them to new sounds too, and really pushing what they thought they knew.

Drug Hunt are nothing short of exceptional, and although we may only have so far, a handful of songs, there’s absolutely no telling what will happen next. They truly take the listener on a mind-bending journey with their music, and right now, we probably need that.





SPECTRES: Nostalgia.

13 03 2020

 

spectres

 

Today I had the day off work, and I’ve done nothing. Absolutely nothing, so it’s only right I try do something with my time. There’s a new record out today by Canada’s finest Post-Punk heroes, SPECTRES. They create intense atmosphere again on their new record. I wrote about Utopia which came out in 2016. Either on here or for Heatwave- I can’t remember. Either way, I’m a HUGE fan of theirs and I’m super excited to write about this record.

 Nostalgia is a sublime record, and for me I hold it as highly and as dear as I did with Utopia. I adore this dark and eerie sound that is delicately flowing through the record, and there’s a load of devotion too which you pick up in the vocals, and its devotion that just melts your heart. It’s the perfect record to listen to if you’re wanting to escape the news, and such. Or if you just want something to fill your heart up with something really pure and honest.

 There’s something about this record that reminds me so much of early Bauhaus and Sisters of Mercy, which for me is nothing short of perfect. I love the moody sounds of the bass and the guitar. I love the urgency in the drums, and the vocals are delivered in a way that makes you realise that this band are not to be messed with. They are the best at what they do, and this record firmly shows us just how much they’ve grown and how bold they are in experimenting in their sound.

 

 

Songs like Pictures from Occupied Europe have this pace to it that make you really soak up the urgency and brutality in the songs. When a bad is this unafraid to show us what they are made of, you cannot help but adore it and respect it. This is my favourite song from the record so far, but like with Utopia, you cannot just pick one solid favourite. The whole damn record is divine.

 The 9 songs on this record were made to pause you in your tracks and to just make you really think about what you’re listening to. You cannot help but feel that the ideal setting for listening to this record is in the pitch black whilst the rain falls hard and taps at your window. The alternative is taking a walk on a grey, foggy day and just play the record over and over; clear your head and free your mind. Fate and Insurgence are the perfect songs to do this to. I mean, the whole record is but these 2 songs in particular just feel like they made for this. I just love the sheer strength in this record and how you can truly hear and feel the growth in this band. I love how they can channel Seventeen Seconds by The Cure (similar eerie atmosphere) and go spooky like early Bauhaus too. There are nods to Joy Division too I think- the rhythm section oozes it, and it sounds so wonderful.

 Nostalgia has songs that are made to be chanted back at the band with such passion and vigor. I love everything about this record, which I’m sure you can sense. The Call sounds like the song they’d end their set on, there’s something about it that feels like it could close the show in such a majestic fashion. Again, it’s another highlight on the record and it’s met with Along the Waterfront which closes the record. This has a finality to it that’s perfect to closing the record. When the record ends, you feel like you need to take a deep breath, and as you breathe out you start the record all over again.

 

 

 

If you’re looking for a sullen record, but also one that will be a source of comfort- Nostalgia is for you. From start to finish it is nothing short of exceptional, and so worthy of all of your love and attention.

 Nostalgia is out now via Artoffact Records.





NITE FIELDS: A Voyeur Makes No Mark.

23 02 2020

 

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Where do I even start with writing about the new Nite Fields record? It’s spooky one, and one that I’m honoured to listen to let alone write about. A little different to what I normally write about, but there’s no better way of celebrating 12 years of this site than by writing about an incredible record.

 That’s right, 12 years ago I set this site up whilst in my second year of university. I didn’t think I would carry on with it, let alone let it go on for over a decade! So, with that in mind I’m going to tell you all about the exceptional new record by Nite Fields. If you’re obsessed with the likes of Cold Cave (Wes Eisold is a God/Genius) or Psychic TV or Autumns (Derry’s finest) or even Drab Majesty- chances are you will fall in love with A Voyeur Makes No Mark by Nite Fields. It is this glorious Industrial sounding record that has mind-blowing sounds flowing all the way through. It is made up of 8 tracks that will leave you in awe. When I listen to it, I am reminded of The Vacant Lots- my love for TVL is pretty obvious, and songs like Not Your Time remind me of some of TVL’s songs. I bloody love it, and it is such an exciting record to listen to. I adore the distorted and eerie vocals. Sure, I’m a massive Punk fan, but whatever you want to call this- this is what really gets me in the gut too.

 The new record is a 10/10 for production. Yeah, I never ever mark records because I am not that kind of person, but I really want to point out just how fascinating every element of this record is, and the production is really something else. The new record is essentially a solo project now, and Danny did the record in Moscow. You can hear the coldness in this record, and it is such a great listen.  Invitation and Voyeur are such powerful songs, and they have a grander feel to them than what we have previously heard by Danny/Nite Fields. You can truly hear the devotion and connect with the creative process on this record, and in a world where everyone wants everything immediately and has to annoyingly share it online immediately; I love how Danny has made something truly worthwhile and deserving of treasuring. Honestly, the production on this record is flawless.

 

 

 

A Voyeur Makes No Mark is a really stunning record, and I love how Danny takes you on this highly intense, and euphoric journey. It’s like you’ve stepped into this decadent underworld that not many are aware of, and the possibly shy away from. It’s full of songs that will make you move in ways no other could. It is full of songs to really lose yourself in. It is just a phenomenal record, and I’m pretty sure that amongst fans, this will become an instant classic. It’s a record ahead of its time, and I sure hope it causes enough demand for a UK tour. Depersonalisation came out 5 years ago, and the leap in the sound, arrangement and production is so great. It’s such a joy to listen to and although it is only 8 songs long, it is enough to make you realise that Danny is truly making something special here. I mean it was obvious 5 years ago, but there’s something about this record that is really beyond anyone’s expectations of what was going to come next from Nite Fields.

 The record ends with the mind-fuckery that is Do It In Reverse. Everything about this song feels like it was made to mess with the listener’s head, and I love that. I love music that takes a listener out of their comfort zone and makes them feel a bit on edge. Danny does this all through the record, but the final song really, really does this in a different way. I can’t really explain but what I can tell you is that every ounce of his talent truly comes through on this song (obviously on the whole record too, but you know what I mean!)

I only write about what I love and will always do so. I’ll never ever find fault, and I will always do my best to get across just how great a record is. I really hope I have done this with the new Nite Fields record because it is such a great listen, and the whole experience of listening to it is just perfect. Bands/artists like Autumns, The Vacant Lots, Drab Majesty- they are really making a difference with their sound and take listeners to some place sacred with their art. Danny/Nite Fields does exactly that too.

 The record is out in April and will be released via Lost Race (if you want the vinyl version) and Perfect Aesthetics (if you want it on tape.)





VIAGRA BOYS: An Ode To Sweden’s Finest.

25 12 2019

 

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Foolishly, I haven’t written about Sweden’s finest Viagra Boys. They have been a band that I have been obsessively listening to over the past few years. I guess I assumed I had already written about them. Never assume. But I guess now is the right time.

Last year they released the exceptional Street Worms, which is one of the most solid debut records we will ever be given by anyone irrespective of genre. It’s got everything you could possibly want from a record. The dark humour and their take on the world, and how fucked it has become is incredible. For me, they are up there with one of my biggest loves- METZ. They’ve got this heaviness in their sound that just blows your mind with every single listen.

Viagra Boys make you want to break stuff, they make you want to pick up a guitar and smash up a stage. They just present the world to you how you see it, but the way they do it is something else. I cannot think of any other band who have this much strength and power in their music. What I love about the band also, is that their fans are so passionate about them and really appreciate the dark humour in the songs and how the songs just make you feel free. There is freedom in relating to your favourite band, and knowing others feel the same. The same goes for bands like IDLES and The Murder Capital. Dedicated fans who are just in love with the music.

 

 

Sebastian has such a distinctive voice. For me, it’s the song Baby Teeth that really cements the sound and style of Sebastian’s vocals. He’s got this effortlessly cool drawl that makes you feel like you’re listening to Lou Reed or Iggy Pop for the first time. When you find a band like this, you really know you have found something special. I can’t write about Viagra Boys and not mention the anthem that is, Sports.

Sports is such a cool song. It oozes coolness so effortlessly, and you cannot help but lose your mind when you play it and shout “SPORTS”! along with Sebastian. I love how the drums and guitar seem to egg each other on in this song to play louder, and to get faster when the hook hits. It’s an underrated anthem, but us shrimps fucking love it. It’s the kind of song that you cannot help but recite whenever you can. The sax hits, and it is the most glorious feeling ever especially when Sebastian is screaming “SPORTS!” as if he has been wounded. I absolutely love this song, and for anyone who has never listened to Viagra Boys- start with Sports and let your obsession be fuelled. There’s six of them in the band, and they are all so vital to creating a sound that is theirs, and theirs alone. They possess the wildness of The Birthday Party and the storytelling of the king that is, Mark E. Smith. These are just a handful of reasons as to why I adore Viagra Boys.

If you check out their live performances on YouTube, you’ll see just how wild they are and how powerful their shows are. You feel like you’re watching something from another planet, and it’s one of the many reasons as to why you should and will love them (if you don’t already!) You can truly see that they are band that put everything into their music, and the way it comes across in their live shows just leaves you in awe. Again, they are a band that will definitely influence the next generation to make something of their own and thank Viagra Boys for it.

Songs like Frogstrap, Can’t Get It Up and Upside Backwards are just incredible. The more I listen to them, the more I hear how they have truly created something that goes beyond Punk or Post-Punk. It goes beyond anything we’ve ever heard before. All you can do is listen obsessively because that’s the kind of hold they have on you. I wouldn’t have it any other way, would you?

 

 

Viagra Boys are on tour in June in the UK. I didn’t get a ticket to the Manchester show because I’m a twat and it’s sold out. Don’t mess up like I have and go get tickets to their shows, if they haven’t sold out yet!





IDLES: Manchester Academy. 4th December 2019.

5 12 2019

idles

I apologise in advance for potentially how erratic and lengthy this will be. Last night’s show went beyond meaning the world to me, and although I may not be able to eloquently put into words what the show meant to me, I know that there is an incredible group of people who fully understand. That group of people are the AF Gang. Thank you.

Prior to the show last night Joe, Lee and Bobo walked past me. I stupidly (or sensibly) used my self-control to not go up to them and spurt out words of love and ask for a photo. I think part of me couldn’t believe it. Not that these real people walked past me, but because I was a couple of hours away from seeing them on stage. It hadn’t sunk in yet; the tickets were last minute (and I owe it to two complete strangers who have hearts of gold.)

Sadly, I didn’t make all the 45s set but what I could hear was truly wonderful and it sounded so energetic. But I did catch all METZ’s set. I think anyone who knows me, knows I love two bands a hell of a lot- METZ and IDLES. I saw METZ earlier this year when they played the Pink Room at YES (USA Nails supported, and again this was a dream line up.) I was blown away and I was left struggling to hear the day after. It was incredible. Second time around in a much bigger venue- they sounded the same. Full of this beautiful rowdiness that just makes you want to pick up a guitar and make a lot of noise. They are one of the best live bands around, and to see everyone else react the same was a beautiful thing too. Songs like Get Off and Acetate were sheer madness, and of course just made me fall in love with them all over again. If you ever get to see them, GO. In any capacity, just go. They’ll shake your bones and shatter your skull in the best way possible.

The main event. The bit where my heart beats faster in a good way, not from having a panic attack. The part where my life probably changes. Where it all kicks in.

IDLES take to the stage and open with Colossus. If you ever want to see a bunch of passionate, beautiful people rush to the front upon hearing the opening chords to an anthem- go to an IDLES show. This was the first time in a very long time where I was in the midst of the crowd. I normally stay back or near the side. I don’t do big venues usually. But I can safely say that I felt so fucking safe at this show. IDLES played 18 songs, and I’m pretty sure we would have begged them to stay longer and play them all again. They are a band that just make me feel so fucking happy and I honestly don’t know what I would do without them. They are a band that say the things I probably can’t, and just voice out my worries and emotions better than I ever could. They are my outlet and my safety net. I have never sung (well, shouted) like this at a show before. This morning my body hurts and my throat hurts in the best way possible. I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Every single song is a highlight (we got QUEENS for fucks sake!!!) and I wanted to stay in the moment forever. Is this how someone feels when they see their child for the first time? I think this is probably better. From the crowd chanting IDLES prior to them coming on stage, from Bobo ending up in the crowd to Joe ending up with someone’s shoe on stage- this was truly the best gig I’ve ever, ever been to. Sorry Nick Cave, I think you’ve bene overtaken! The crowd chanting “Oh Jeremy Corbyn” to the mass sing along of Wonderwall and All I Want For Christmas Is You. It was the most loving and precious atmosphere; I just wanted to be immersed in it forever.

This was my first IDLES show and it won’t be my last. There is something about seeing them for the first time that just gives you that kick up the arse that you need. Everything that this band and us fans stand for is something to treasure and to pass on. There were kids at the gigs with their parents, and if it was their first ever gig then everything else in life has a lot to live up to! I loved that during Rottweiler birthday girl, Catherine got on stage to play guitar with them. To see a fellow AF Ganger up on stage with the band and just ripping the stage apart was beautiful. That’s how you do a birthday and close a show.

Slow Savage broke my heart. This was the only moment I cried during the show. There is something about the way Joe shouts, “I’m the worst lover that you’ll ever have” that rips you apart. It’s the sheer openness and vulnerability in their songs that lures you in and wraps itself around your heart. This song is a prime example of it. But there is something else about their shows that will wrap itself around your heart- the strong feeling of unity.

Danny Nedelko is sang like a football chant on the terraces. This song means a hell of a lot to me and so many. It’s a perfect example of what makes this country great- the people who come here to better themselves. Our beautiful immigrants. We love you and you are welcome here. Always.

I feel I am missing key moments from the show, but I’ve had 5 hours sleep and a bit of a migraine brewing. I don’t care. I have never felt so alive as I did last night. The atmosphere was safe and full of love- just how it should be. We got Queens for fucks sake! I’m still delirious over that; incredible. Last night changed something in me. I’m not entirely sure what just yet, but something will emerge I’m sure. It has to. Since losing my Gran 3 months ago, I’ve not had hold of any emotion I have; everything has been a downward spiral in my head but last night I had a glimmer of stability. I have to go with that.

There is also nothing more satisfying and therapeutic than screaming along to their song Mother, and yelling “MOTHER! FUCKER!” with a few thousand people. Nothing can beat that.

Keep fucking going, and love yourself. LOVE.YOURSELF.





HATE MOSS.

2 12 2019

HATEMOSS

 

There is so much that I love about Hate Moss that I have no idea where to begin. The name of the band alone should make you love them. This Brazilian/Italian duo are based in London, and I think if I still lived in London, they would be THAT band that I constantly go see. They have something about them that just makes you really want to invest in them. As far as duos go, they’re up there with the best of them. They take elements of bands I love and make something of their own which is beautifully dark and creepy.

I think the best time to listen to Hate Moss is, well, all the time! But aside from that, listening to them in the dark when nothing and no one is around is an ideal setting. I’ve got a few bands that I listen to like this, and there’s something so sacred about listening to music in this vulnerable setting. I guess in a way, it makes you really soak up everything that’s going on in a more heightened manner.

 

 

Hate Moss don’t make sounds for those wanting sickly delicate emotions and thoughts. They’re for those who aren’t afraid to stay on the edge of something that could probably terrify someone else. Their songs have this euphoric glow to them, and it is really brought to life on songs such as The Time Your Remake which is 8 minutes of sheer heaven. Their synth-based sounds remind me of the likes of Drab Majesty and my all-time love, Cold Cave. They give you this atmosphere that gets you right in the gut.

Hate Moss totally stop you in your tracks when you listen to them. You simply can’t do anything when you listen to them apart from just that- listen to them. The vocals will send shivers right through you, and the music alone will increase everything you could possibly feel when listening to them. Two people are doing this- just two people. The incredible thing is that they don’t have that many songs, but every song feels like this ethereal cloak of darkness that you want to constantly cover you. They are such a special band, and you can really hear where they want to go when you stop and listen to their music.

Songs like Evil and Honey were made for you to just play really, loud. They’re the kind of songs you can see yourself screaming back at the band. Sometimes you just find a band or a song that you absolutely cling to, and these songs because your everything for that specific moment in your life.

 

 

I could quite happily switch off from the world and listen to Hate Moss on a loop. I could also sleep for a few days because I am so tired. But anyway, Hate Moss have something about them that just makes you feel like their live shows are really something else. This duo really knows how to get the listener right in the gut, and with just a handful of songs- they have mastered this perfectly.