Wednesday, 1 August 2012

Review - High/Low 'Forty' EP

How’s this for a debut EP? Essex based band High/Low have unleashed a cheeky, catchy beast of an EP which backs up the rather awesome video (see previous post below), and it’s very, very good. If you didn’t miss the video posting of the title track, then your appetite has been teased already with the balls out riffs and hooky melodies, it’s a no brainer that it kicks this EP off at all. Hell, I’ve posted the video again for you to save you searching, thank me later, OK? With familiarity out the way, it’s quickly followed by the rather awesome ‘Spy Eye’, which, and please tell me to shush (I don’t care if you do, so there), has the feel of some Pains Of Being Pure At Heart-style dream pop sitting in the under-current , mixing it up with the rush of distorted bass and crashing drums. If POBPAT wore badges declaring their love of Foo Fighters, Feeder, Failure & Doves, then they might sound something like this. Pretty impressed so far? You should be. Don’t be fooled, as I was, by the intro of ‘In Flight’. It’s quiet, almost confessional and perhaps a little sickly for my beastly, manly belly, but it kicks in romps home at a tempo, galloping away with atmospheric guitars and fuzzy bass, with vocalist Steve Weston belting out the words “if I fall apart” over the top like someone who’s had their finger stuck on the repeat button by some pesky kid. It’s all pretty tense stuff. It’s right about now you get hit firmly between the eyes, remembering that this is just their debut, and you’re only 3 tracks in.

I’m going to have one slight criticism – after the strong opening 3, the last 3 tracks, for me, do kind of blend into one which, although still pretty decent in their own rights, aren’t quite as memorable. ‘Sunshine Recorder’ is like some bastard offspring of Idlewild, My Vitriol and the Foos, (My Idle Foo anyone?), ‘Tell Me Something’ follows the same tempo/riff template as ‘Forty’ ie it chugs along at a fair old pace and lodges itself into your head like an axe, and ‘Cures’ riffs it out to round things off nicely, albeit it does have a rather abrupt ending.
Overall opinion? A strong opening EP from a band who certainly know how to deliver the meaty riffs and the hooks to suck you in. It’s stuff like this that makes you remember how shitty the mainstream music industry is when you’ve got decent unknown bands like this, putting out awesome music. Get behind them, and get some High/Low in your life.

HIGH/LOW - Forty (HD) from High/Low on Vimeo.

Sunday, 29 July 2012

Download - Das Russians!!!

Southend alt/rock trio Das Russians have just put the rather awesome (and rather Eighties Matchbox/At The Drive-In influenced) tracks 'Private Ambulance' and 'Bee Line' available for download on Soundcloud. Enjoy, these are fucking loud and pretty fucking rocking.

Introducing - The Last Men

Coming across like a more pop Bombay Bicycle Club, Essex/Hertfordshire band The Last Men mix up indie melodies with summery pop hooks laced with danceable guitars and brass. Currently, the band have had 2 tracks synced with Unirversal and are currently in the process of releasing 11 new videos on Youtube. Their EP 'TLM' is now available on iTunes which contains the rather lovely 'Anyway' and the ska-tinged 'Wannabe'. Enjoy


Tuesday, 24 July 2012

Deferred Sucess Live @ ThingamaGig 21/07/12

Those lovealbe folk/punk chaps Deferred Sucess (yes, that is the right of spelling it before you ask) were given the honour of closing the 2nd stage at the ThingamaGig charity festival at the New White Hart pub in Billericay, and in true form, they delivered a singalong set of epic proportion.
From the moment opener 'Bored' kicked in, the crowd are clearly up for sing and dance, and the band are quite clearly up for the "dare you to break the stage" challenge that's been thrown down, by leaping and stomping without any care in the world. Sensing the crowd's appetie, they blast through 2  covers - Carter USM's 'Sherriff Fatman' and James' one and only hit, 'Sit Down', which sends everyone into some kind of delirium. With the additonal of Ed Rome (The Big/Ed Rome & The Connectors) on mandolin, Deferred sound immense.
In their vain attempts to break the stage, they end up killing the power to the stage during 'Don't Worry About It', which prompts vocalist/Guitarist Doozer and harmonica-weilding Rich to pile into the crowd for an imprmptu unplugged/singalong section to the song.
One thing you get with Deferred Sucess is audience participation. Everyone sings loudly to the chorus of 'Ode To The Memory of Twat Rock' and the memorable 'Cider On The Beach'. Even the kids gets involved with percussion being passed out during the finale of 'Get Up And Do It Again'. It's all excellent stuff in the alcohol fuelled crowd enjoying the sadly setting sunshine.
So, if you've never seen Deferred Sucess before, make sure you do, they're bound to be playing a festival near you soon....


Monday, 23 July 2012

Band of the Week - High/Low

Do you like crunchy guitars with catchy melodies being backed up by fuzzy bass and hooks the size of your head? You do? Then Essex duo High/Low are just what you’re looking for.  From the ashes of The Nurse Who Loved Me, High/Low have risen quickly and brought their brand of alt rock to our attention very quickly with the rather awesome ‘Forty’, in which you can see the video below.
Consisting of vocalist/guitarist/drummer Steve Weston & bassist Lee Yates, High/Low’s debut 6 track EP, also titled ‘Forty’, is set to drop on August 6th on their own label, InStereo Records and will be available on CD, download and cassette. WNTEAC! will be bringing you the lowdown on the EP next week with a review, so keep your eyes peeled. In the meantime, enjoy the video for ‘Forty’ and spread the word.

HIGH/LOW - Forty (HD) from High/Low on Vimeo.

Official Site

Friday, 20 July 2012

Baddies announce split!

Essex band Baddies have announced they are to split.
A statemet issued on their Facebook page last night (19th July) said the following -

"It is with heavy heart and a lump in our collective throats that we announce Baddies are splitting up. We're still great friends/family but it has become a ongoing struggle that's too difficult to continue with.
Thankyou and goodnight"

The band released 2 albums, 'Do The Job' and most recently 'Build', in which you can see the video for 'Bronto', the first single from this album below, incase you missed it before.

Official Site

Monday, 16 July 2012

Hard Rock Calling? More like Hard Rock Muted By The Man...

Before the backlash, let me get one thing straight – I know from a previous visit to Hard Rock Calling that there’s sound issues, so in a way, I shouldn’t have been too shocked, but even still...
I’ve been waiting to see Soundgaden for years. They split when I was 16 (I’m 32 now), so needless to say there’s some child-like excitement about this gig. The weather sucks, but who cares? The band, who were once nicknamed Frowngarden, would probably be suited to blasting out their grunge in the rain anyway. The organisers do deserve a big pat on the back for getting Hyde Park in shape for the weekend of shows, even if it meant denying sad, resentful, thirty something women the opportunity to have flashbacks to 1980’s school discos where they smooched their long lost love to Kylie & Jason on the dance floor, by cancelling some god forsaking pop concert. And anyway, does London really need the sound of Steps polluting the royal parks? No fucking chance.
Anyway, so from the moment Soundgarden hit the stage and launch into Spoonman, it becomes apparent that the sound is terrible, and too quiet. I’m well aware of the issues last year that caused many to complain regarding Arcade Fire’s headline show in Hyde Park.  So when we’re getting songs like Outshined, Jesus Christ Pose, The Day I Tried To Live & Rusty Cage, we really want to hear them shattering our, erm, (rusty) rib cage, if you will. The fact the weather is bad doesn’t help, but it doesn’t excuse the fact that Hard Rock Calling is severely hampered by its choice in venue. I bet it sounded great down the front, but those of us who want to stand back a bit and enjoy it without some lairy teenagers wanting to mosh over you, it’s not good enough.
So what to do? Pearl Jam in 2010 was louder than this, and was still disrupted easily enough by the annoying chatter of disinterested people (don’t start me on that one...) and I also understand that the posho’s of Mayfair have had a whinge over the volume and number of events being held at Hyde Park (heaven forbid anyone coming into a park and enjoying themselves – if you don’t like it, then maybe have a nice weekend away, it’s not like you can’t afford it), but for Hard Rock Calling to continue, it really needs at a better venue. Surely you can’t have a gig called Hard Rock Calling, when the whole event turned down to 6, so it emits a polite whisper. You could argue, on the plus side, that the size of Hyde Park allows the organisers to lay on 4 stages of music, which also includes unknown bands given an opportunity to show their stuff, and at £50-odd a ticket, does represent some decent value, but then those dreaded noise levels kick in and the feeling of being slightly cheated creeps in. Even standing just on the edge of the tent for The Mars Volta was bad.  There must be somewhere within London that this festival can move to and not have to face the same noise restrictions? Or perhaps Westminster Council/Royal Parks could reduce the number of events it gives permission for, on the basis the volume restriction could be lifted? With the amount of revenue they must make having so many events on in the park, this isn’t an option that would be taken lightly. Money certainly does talk far louder than the music in this case. Failing venues in London, why not shift it to Milton Keynes Bowl? Logistically, it’s further out, and can be a pain to get out from after, but after Foo Fighters last year, it’s a cracking venue for outdoor shows. And after going to Big Day Out festival there back in 1999, they quite easily had 2 stages set up. Just a thought...
I’d pre-warned my Dad on the Saturday morning before he headed out to the Bruce Springsteen show, that the sound would be bad. I’m not sure if he believed me. By the end of Saturday, he knew exactly what I meant.  He also felt slightly deflated after reflecting back on Sunday morning at the fact the sound had ruined it, which was the exact same feeling I had after Soundgarden. Hard Rock Calling? More like Hard Rock Muted By The Man. I challenge the promoters to find an alternative venue for next year where the music can be enjoyed by everyone, regardless where they are in the venue, otherwise, I, like many others, will probably give it a miss. Shame that. They’ll probably end up getting someone I really badly want to see play....