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SINGLES, SINGLES, SINGLES... BEST OF THIS WEEK'S RELEASES..
19th April.. Due vocanic ash clouds, the Lucy Gang, flights of fancy being cancelled as near normal services as we normally have will be back here next week provided airspace is open again... . 
12th APRIL '10....
12th April... SINGLE OF THE WEEK.. 

EHNAHRE – Alpha/Omega (Fun With Asbestos) – They’re from over there in Boston (USA not Lincolnshire), they got a giant slab of a new limited edition twelve inch single out (one hundred of them in hand printed covers). Just two tracks – two tracks is enough here - one just over nine minutes long, the other a mere seven and a half. Some kind of blood-thirsty schizophrenic ride through experimental doom/death/black metal that takes that raw old school sound and shoves it through an avant blender with all kinds of dark atmospheric experimental twitching and screaming along with those giant metal riffs, yelps and growls. Atmospheric space, taut tension, a beautifully ugly atonal Armageddon and something that revolves around the poems Leda And The Swan and The Second Coming (the work of Irish writer William Butler Yates). Delicious malevolence, disturbing darkness and what lurks in those quiet bits that are so much more powerful than the release of the noise - horrifically grotesque and uncompromising dissonance, unstable intensity, aural depravity, glorious noise, everything an extreme metal band should be... no need to bother with anything else this week, single of the week without a doubt...   -  www.myspace.com/funwithasbestos or www.myspace.com/ehnahremetal
X

5th APRIL '10....
APRIL 5th, no easter eggs here, just singles and....

ANTI-SINGLE OF THE WEEK 

CUTTHROAT CONVENTION – What The? (Double Edge Scissor) – They say it isn’t a single, they say this is an anti-single, no idea what that means, this is a classic single, what are they one about? Cutthroat Convention, like we’ve said before (several times) are a band who just don’t fit anywhere, who sound like no one else – see, you can still be genuinely different, you can still challenge yourself (and your listeners). London’s Cutthoat Convention are one of the best bands out there right now, there’s this little knot of ‘other’ London bands existing on the outskirts and doing things differently – Cutthoat Convention, Rude Mechanicals... Two tracks here, (wrapped in that scissor art again), and where do we start? We’ve only got words here, dancing around strange looking architecture and sharpe edges and other rhythms and foreign-sounding textures. Asian drum and bass for post-rock fans who don’t really like post rock but do like a touch glitching twitching string-scratching or a touch of Captain Beafheart contradiction and orchestral drum’n bass stabs, genuinely avant sting-like sounds, track jumping train rides but nothing like any of that really so forget this last sentence, shut the f up!  Their sound is starting to establish itself now, instantly recognisable fingerprint and this could be no one but Cutthroat Convention putting that bullet to your head. Anti-single then, no easy on the ear pop convention, no three minute verse chorus verse, none of those boxes ticked - other dimensions, things burnt, different noises, different sounds getting beneath your dirty skin – see, classic single, play it three times and it sticks in your head, you’ll be singing the slice of cutting double edged beauty on the 18 bus while you avoid the ticket inspectors with your stencils and Crimson king spray cans and there’s discipline here, found something! Those weird-arse things King Crimson were doing in the 80’s that King Crimson fans hated and turning and spanners and drum ‘n bass prog rock that’s nothing like either notion and slowing and swerving and finishing and ending and what the?  Shut the f up, I don’t care, I don’t give an F.... you really should though, we need bands like Cutthroat Convention out there genuinely challenging in these days of sheep-like musical conformity, we need to see this city burn and what the f indeed – download it (for free if I have my often wrong facts right) from  www.myspace.com/cutthroatconvention
x

SINGLE OF THE WEEK 2

CAPTAIN AHAB – I Don’t Have A Dick (Deathbomb Arc) - You did already download that other single we told you about a couple of weeks ago didn’t you? Acting Hard, It was free, you had nothing to lose and I do have the biggest hat in the world so you should be taking notice of everything ever said here and pay attention now for this will always be, you will live and die in a blink of his eye for he is Captain Ahab. He has colours no painter could ever mix, he lives in a house bigger than cities, he makes the loudest beats in the world and if you dare to taste them then you’re gonna get f**ked up for Captain Ahab rules! We told you all this before and he you should know he also has the biggest gun in the world, it can shoot a hole right through the sun... If you haven’t downloaded that free song we reviewed a couple of weeks ago then do it right now, scroll down very this page and do it right now, the link is there waiting, just down the page, go grab it and listen to it, see what we’re on about, agree with us, smell our sweat, the sweetest ever. Then when you’ve grabbed the first one, and only then, you  should you go grab this second slice of Captain Ahab’s power, honour and ambition, Go grab this and then come back and agree that possessing or not possessing the male reproductive organ does not effect anything. This is no metaphor and he does not have the female reproductive organ either – this is of no matter for he is alive, he has been alive forever, alive and there sitting atop of his mountain stronghold – go listen to his words and be dazzled by his golden chains and his hat that can shade all the starving children of the world at the same time. Be warm in the knowledge that he drives the fastest car in the world, that it has a windscreen made from the finest diamonds and dreams (and that he don’t have a dick...). Captain Ahab rules, go see why -  here’s all you need, (and when you have come back, tell us we were right and thanks us, we will receive your thanks with grace) Here come the links...
    Acting Hard is the first track we told you about a couple of weeks ago. the opening track off the forthcoming (6th April) album called The End Of Irony, you can have this track right now as a free download via http://captainahab.bandcamp.com - no, hang on, you missed the first freebie, serves you right, pay attention when we yell! That link now means you can chase up this second free single/download/whatever called I Don't have A Dick and then find out more Captain A via www.myspace.com/captainahab. Meanwhile you can find out about the constantly good DeathbombArc label via www.deathbombarc.com

Also this week, check out (or avoid) the following singles and things...

FUTURE ISLANDS – Tin Man (Thrill Jockey) – The ever productive outfit from Baltimore with a single out ahead of the new album In Evening Air. Tingly goodness and chiming yellow brick road tales and that North American Animal Collective sound of ringing is in the air once again. Distinctive instinctive voice though, different tingle, chime of their own, tunes of their own, tales of their own, brick roads of their own – www.myspace.com/futureislands

DEATH OF LONDON – The Independent State Of Death Of London (Function) - Five tracks from the rather defiant sounding Leicester band. More of their wired-up post hardcore and sense of unease, that constant feeling of injustice and state of confrontation, voices in their heads, voices saying not that much about them? Chips on shoulders, big riffs, abrasive edge, disturbed edge. Some of it is maybe a little bit standard issue screamy throaty post-hardcore, when they do hit the spot they hit it well though -  Kiri Kiri Kiri is the stand out track on this five song EP (that’s the one you might have heard on the Organ  radio show over at Resonance FM last week). Death of London are a standard issue set if post-hardcore alt.indie English guitar rock barbs that want to rip at your skin and provoke some kind of reaction, now and again, with a track like the aforementioned Kiri Kiri Kiri, they do. Most of the time they kind of fly by in a blur of semi-interesting almost spot-hitting though and come on, is that all you got for us? Is energy your only real weapon? Really with so many bands out there fighting for everyone’s attention, we need a little more besides all the energy and the attitude, need a little more from Death Of London before we get really excited, more that bite with the edge of Kiri Kiri Kiri, one out of five, however good that one is, is not quite enough (do get the feeling that one day soon they might just drop that bomb though, it might just be in there somewhere)  – www.functionrecords.com or www.deathoflondon.co.uk

VICTORIA & JACOB – With No Certainly / There’s A War (Voga Parochia) – Harmless enough slice of sugar sweet thrift-shop alt.pop. Delicate voices, fairytales even though they’re certain there are probably no fairytales. A rather sweet electro duo with a touch of an Animal Collective in there with the hint of Joanna Newsom, probably a little too nice and sweet for these ears. Mice nice nice enough organic samples and delicate gentle bleeps and she has a nice sweet voice and a nice sense of beauty. None of the acoustic xylophone play of last time, and these electronic voice manipulating machines do not please ears around here. Nice enough single, interesting direction they’re taking themselves in, here it is. Nice... sweet...   – www.myspace.com/victoriaandjacob

WE’LL ALL BE HEROES – Everything Must Go (some label or other) – Rule-obeying, herd-following Emo pop-metal band warning! What a punchable singer, what a predictable set of heard it a million times before tunes, signposts the size of Mars telling you where they’re going way before they ever get there with their bag load of cliché-ridden we want to be American nonsense from the North East of England... One of them boasts about studying at the “acclaimed” Los Angeles Musicians Institute, what a f**king w*nker!  “Post-hardcore” proclaims the press release, hardcore? You haven’t got a clue! What a nest of super-slick soulless shite-sucking Hot-Topic wannabe bullprint-following rule-following gutless chickenshit bullcrap. By far the worst thing we’ve heard in ages, worse than Fightstar (yes really!), everything must indeed go. Yep, that’s right, things are leaving us in a rather constructive mood today, why the flip do people make such soul-destroying heartless cynical ‘music’? Some things just can't be ignored, something had to be said, why does this even exist!? If you really must then www.myspace.com/allbeheroes

ECHOES FALL – Ignite The Fall (Self release0 – Scremo thrasho thrown the kictchen sink in silly-beard look-at-my-tattoos and how good we can  pose for the band photo while we copy our record collection metal conformity from Suffolk.. Melodic deathcore is what we’re supposed to say it is here, technical wankery once more... Heard this a million times already, not a single note that leaves anything like the notion of an identity or a fingerprint of their own . Another metal band happy to just pose the pose, go through the motions, obey the rules and sound something that amounts to ‘professional’ and something like their rather narrow record collection. “Go easy on them, this is their debut, don’t be so harsh, give them a chance” I hear someone cry. Why? Why give them a chance? They can clearly play, but this is more gutless rule-obeying when they really should be grabbing hold of our ears and challenging! Grow a collective set of balls and do something more than meekly conform to the ‘melodic deathmetal’ blueprint and being happy to sound something like your record collection for gawd sake, this is coward-metal, it will not do – www.myspace.com/echoesfall
x

THE CURSORS – Slow Burn (self release) – New three tracker from the London band, arrived here with a hand-made (slightly disturbing) hand-delivered valentine card back in Feb. Waited until now to tell you, we like to tie things in with release dates and have some kind of semblance of organisation around these chaotic parts. They’re London based, from all points of the global village and alive with a dark-edged slightly sinister (bunny-boiling?)  new wave female-fronted post-punky left-field pop sound. Best of the three tracks here is the last one, Spit And Swallow has a menace of an aftertaste about it, a cold sweat, she’s your bitter pill (so she says). Or maybe the slow burn of the open track is the one, something about it eats at blackened hearts and that undercurrent she leaves you feeling..   Hand delivered cards, would you want her knowing where you live? Is there something slightly disturbing about that? Another disturbingly tasty single from those rather good Cursors – www.myspace.com/thecursorsmusic

DAISY CUTTER – M.O.N.O (NCB) - This lot again, given up on making bad bad hair metal now and discovered melodic grunge and 1992 with this their bad Nivana impression. CD came in here with a load of positive quotes from several of those slick bullshitting music websites that cluelessly positively review anything they get for free, shitehawk freeloading websites with names like Room 13 and such encouraging bands that are at best very very average (covering note seemed to think that we should agree with said reviews from clueless websites and how out of touch we were not to be doing so). Oh dear, first track and that Nirvana impression that we mentioned a moment ago was the highlight here. Rest of it really does sound like a bad bad hair metal band waking up and trying to jump on the Grunge band wagon circa summer ’93. All them LA Sunset Strip second division bands who suddenly relocated to Seattle and bought striped jumpers and plaid shirts. Daisy Cutter are from Norway, their bad grunge pop is threatening to sending us to sleep now, where’s the fast forward button..... Enough, eject. If you want average things like this then go read one those boring freeloading music websites that embarrassingly seem to like just about anything and everything, kind of sites that give us all a bad name ... No more records (and bullshit press releases) like this cluttering up our post bag please, we won’t keep on politely ignoring then, prospective is sometimes needed, far too many bands (and websites) cluttering things up, can't see the wood for the trees -   www.myspace.com/daisycutterband

THE EX – Maybe I Was The Pilot (Ex Records) – New seven inch from the rejuvenated long-standing Dutch agit-post-punk legends. They’ve got a new frontman after all these years, they’re still that wired-up question angular vessel of old with their anarcho undertones and their Dutch cousin of Crass question throwing otherness. So new guitarist/vocalist/claxon player Arnold De Boer’s first recorded work with the band, stepping in to G.W Sok’s twenty nine year old shoes. Let’s not beat around the bush here, this is good, this still flows in that awkward challenging unpredictable way you require The Ex to flow, this is still the same vital band and they’re sounding fresh, dissonantly weird and ready for the challenge of the next thirty years. Helps that De Boar (also of Zea) sounds rather like Sok -  www.theex.nl

ROBIN GUTHRIE – Sunflower Stories (Rocket Girl) – The Cocteau Twins doing exactly what you expect him to do, slow moving floaty fluffy pink clouds and that refined refreshing dreamscape floaty dreamy thing he does. Kind of sounds like an instrumental version of every Cocteau Twins record ever to these ears, you know if you want to float along with his Sunflower Stories or not, these ears kind of need a little more, suspect he could do this on automatic pilot – www.robinguthrie.net or www.rocketgirl.co.uk

BLEEDING THROUGH – Anti Hero (Roadrunner) – Yeah right... um... got to go now, beans to cook, someone at the door... before I go let me quote the screaming metal bleeder on vocals here, he did just sing “I’ve had enough, not impressed with a f’’king thing you do” didn’t he? Echoes Fall were far better... “f**king go away” sings yer Bleeding Through man, indeed mate... you said it...

Alternative big lump of rock cheese single of the week

RATT – Best Of Me (Roadrunner) – Yeah, what you gonna do about, Ratt! The good old ‘round and ‘bleedin ‘round, Ratt are back, how old are these flippers now, do they still have big hair? See there’s bad hair metal and there’s good bad-hair metal and this classic radio friendly great big AOR flavoured Ratt single is good bad-hair metal. How much more preposterously big and unashamedly radio friendly could it be? None more, none more preposterously big. This is a massive slice of Journey-sounding 80’s rock radio good good good. Taste those slices of undiluted rock cheese piled up on tasty slice of big thick throwaway rock cheese – a feeling your never going to stop, spinning like a top - and what you gonna do about it? Ratticus ruleicus, don’t get all strangled up now... They got a new album on the way, that’ll probably be crap, they only ever have one good song per album and we already got that one here. Don’t go throwing things, we came here to band some f**kin’ heads, none of that eyeliner and baby baby in every fuggin’ song, ride the fuggin’ lighting, we’re out of here, another classic Ratt single, you know you want it. 
      (N.B Everyone else here in Organ land would like to disassociate themselves with this last review, there again everyone else around here knows nothing about proper big radio rock cheese and the glories of AOR and... ) – www.therattpack.com
x29th MARCH '10....

29th MARCH '10....
Monday Monday, single time... March 29th....

SINGLE OF THE WEEK..

DEATHPODAL - Exu_Wow (Electropapknit) – A warm vibrant inviting set of lo-fi post rock flavours, raw pieces of quiet consideration that know when to step aside and make way for naked edgy post-punk aggression. Aggression that’s still controlled and considered though, this is clever music, this has a little more thought to it, an experimental edge, an understanding of space and the power of less is more. This is the art of creativity rather than just another post-something rock band. Five impressive tracks and a debut EP from a project (from Glasgow) that is mostly a solo artist called Deathpodal (otherwise known as Alastair J Chivers). Alastair is a multi instrumentalist armed with guitar, synth, piano, metalwork, percussion, an Indian flute called a soo soo, melodica and a sampler, the EP brings in friends / musicians collaborating the live flow and the instant feel of it all. Recorded in various locations across Scotland – the university of Glasgow, various flats, a church in Edinburgh, a portacabin in Stonehaven, as well as on the streets of Prague ...  There’s some rather delicate, rather jagged, rather beautiful moments here, some genuine rewarding composition, some considered art and  yes, the whole thing does work as one whole enjoyable body of work, the shades may change but it does flow as one sublime piece. Positively lo-fi, feral, post-rock without ever descending to the cliché that post-rock so often is these days. Kind of feels like some of the good North American things of the early/mid 90’s, experimental post hardcore/post rock creativity delivered with flowing warmth and a bit of an artistic challenge along with the genuine progression. Recommended  - www.electropapknit.com

          Anything else worth bothering with this week? We got some slick homogenised boyband punk-pop here, worse than that Busted offshoot emo lots who’s name I have no wish to remember right now. Self-proclaimed ‘punk’ that’s about as far away from punk as a never-ending Emerson Lake And Palmer sound check in some enormodome on the planet that exists in the bubble on the arse-end of one of David Cameron’s phoney humanoid I really care about the working class smiles. Look at that smirking smile and tells us the f**ker isn’t going to shaft us all as soon as he gets in! These slick mass-produced airbrushed boyband ‘punks’ are the David Camerons that clutter up our music, they must be destroyed, humanoid production line ‘punks’ the lot of them, don’t let any of them get a foot in the door now... 
           What else have we got here in this week’s pile of singles? We’ve got some dreadfully predictable heard it all before ‘alternative’ sub-source industrial pop and some dreadful Hoxton twat electro junk that sounds like it landed here direct from the back room of the Nailgun Arms. We got a pile of generic indie-rock guitar bands, we got several bands who want to be some slight variation on the Muse playing at being Radiohead thing... Ah hell we got more of that generic ska pop, this one is accompanied by a slick corporate press release telling us how utterly punk rock it all is. We got some weak-kneed emo poop and look at me aren’t I oh so sensitive (and a little like Frank Turner) with my acoustic guitar and by open-hearted honesty, get out on the street and get some living done yourself wet boy! Damn candle thieving waste of time... Lot of waste of your time and mine singles in the pile this week...
                 Hang on hang on, eyes on the prize, Violet Violet, they won’t let us down, it was all looking like just one single worth bothering with reviewing this rather thin on decent singles week...

VIOLET VIOLET – For The Young & Fresh Boned (Nrone) – We’ve said good things about them before, played them at you on the radio and such, we like their spiky goodness and their fresh boned energy... Not just energy and attitude though, there’s always a touch of depth with these two feisty girls from Norwich. They don’t half have a full-bodied sound for a mere two piece, not that things are over produced or anything, no no no, eyes on the prize here, big sound indeed. Guitar riffs that bite, hand-clap pop chorus, bubble-gum energy, fizz and rampage and calls for extra security, a Nightingales track as one of the b-sides, Kit-Kats in the canteen, songs to sing along with, plenty of driving bite, this ain’t no throwaway lightweight pop and no one is giving up on you here, Violet Violet are not the kind of band to let you down and this might just be their best thing yet – www.myspace.com/nronerecords or www.myspace.com/violetviolet1

SKINDRED – You Can’t Stop It (Bieler) – These Skindred records are just far too slick and nowhere near the former glories of the mighty Dub War are they. I’m told Benji and company still kick it live, their output these days doesn’t have anyone around here running to find out. Dub War were one of the essential bands for a while back there, Skindred sound like an over-slick over-produced compromised corporate watered down version. No shark bites here, And I really do want to say good things, Benji’s a good guy, he deserves it all and more, alas Skindred records there days just seem to disappoint, we’ll leave it with you and wish a good man all the best... www.myspace.com/skindred

SORRY AND THE SINATRAS – Hated Hearts (Seven Inch) – Press release says this is out on April 1st, got to have arrived here trying to catch us out like some early April fools right? They thought they’d catch us out! Can’t get us, we know a joke band when we hear one... Generic punk pop, generic hot-topic temporary tattoo emo beano artwork, silly hats and a song line that goes something like “got a feeling this is going nowhere”. Oh hang on, they’re the band Danny Wildheart put together then got out of when he realised what a cliché it all had become (or something like that, so the press release says). What we have left here is a transit van full of people from semi-name eternal support slot down the pub on a Thursday generic punk pop bands churning out the same old thing you've heard a million times already. Is there anything sadder than English bands with tattoos and hats trying to pretend they’re mean barroom bands from Baltimore or Oakland or some such place...? Some people it seems are happy churning out any old generic crap, oh well, live and let live, ain’t our way to clutter up time and saddle our space with this kind of review, All Fools Day isn’t until Thursday, no one caught us out. If you think it be you're thing and want a slice then here’s a link, can't say we didn't tell you where you get it if you want it, live and let live, we’re out of here before something gets broken again – www.seveninchrecords.com

OOOO, STOP PRESS: Seems we've upset emo punk pop look at my hair gel brigade again, oh dear me... Seems a couple of facts are wrong in that Sorry review, so bleedin’ what! So the record company can’t get their press release right, and now they’re sending us moaning f*** e.mails about how we've been mean and how we don't support the underground and how crap we are, that and getting their mates to send us speedurchin boo hoo crybaby e.mails aswell, oh dearly me, so bleedin’ what? Fact here is non of you punk pop look at my tattoos while I play the same tune you’ve heard a million times f**ks have had an original idea in the last ten years - you all follow the same blueprint, you all obey the same rules, strike the same pose and frankly who cares who’s in this sad-sack of a band, who was in the band, who going to be in the band, where  the band are from, where they want to be from, who was born in Canada, Australia, Wales or Finland, the Sorry lot could be from anywhere and who cares? Gutless faceless generic rule obeying conformity is the bottom line here. Obey the rules punk pup conformity that’s about as punk rock as Phil Collins on a big pink pogo stick, go enjoy it if  you need to, have a nice day now...  Oh look at them with their hearts with daggers through them, and look at that, record label moaning that they sound nothing like the fuggin' Wildhearts and have nothing to do with said Wildhearts while they damn label website says they damn well do...! Fug me, get your own shit together and your own facts in line before you come moaning and crying here! Generic second divsision Wildhearts punk pop emoshite is what your trying to flog us here Mr Seven Inch, we're knee deep in that poop already... Having another listen now on MySpace, how much more second division Wildhearted could it be, none, none more black... Get out of here..

Hey labels and bands, If you don't like what we say then no one asked you to send it in in the first place did they.. We've been supportingthe so called underground far longer than you and we'll be doing it a long time after you... now shut the flip up and go gel your hair and don't send us any more of this generic crap... 
 

 22nd MARCH '10....
Rage rage against the dying of the light... and the bible blackness if it all. 

Cats is good things and so is Cate, poetic justice and singles? We don’t know about singles, they are still good things aren’t they? They still live don’t they? We’re not wasting our time (and yours) here are we? Kicking against the packets of, hang on, what is the point here? 
           Is there a point to all this? Trying to find some words for this single that’s playing right now, but but but, why be polite and uncommitted about the decently average nice enough stuff that we really don’t care about that much? if DON’T MOVE don’t move us to anything more than a polite uncommitted review that says they’re quite nice and pleasant and a little folky with a touch of Yardbirds in there then what is the point? Move along, big pile of singles here, here’s comes some mellow SOULSAVERS blues, not the best thing we’ve heard from them, a decent enough cover of Gene Clark’s Misunderstanding, from his 1974 solo album No Other. That mid 70’s country rock thing members of bands like The Byrds were doing in LA in the mid 70’s when everything went all dull and Jackson Browne, I’m sure you can go Google Soulsavers and find if you really care that much, I got places to be, things to throw, go find a link if you that curious about this latest Soulsavers release, it really isn’t as good as the original, you surely need to bring something different to a cover? And the least interesting Soulsavers release thus far, bit of a dirge actually.... next... 

Six singles later... no, hang on, seven... none worth a mention, here comes number eight... 

           This one sounds like someone doing a comedy Mark E Smith impression, some band called PIFCO and a single called UK Adults (on the Run Of The Mill label), Huw Stephens apparently thinks it to be the bee’s bollocks or something like that, he’s doesn’t have the highest of standards does he...? Would Mr Peel have played this? Bad Mark E Smith wannabe singer, only one track on this ‘single’, I hate one track promo singles. Singles should have b-sides! Dreadfully bad Mark E Smith impression, didn’t someone think to stop him? Are they just taking the piss? Is this meant to be a comedy record? Someone from the far better Quack Quack is involved. Surely this is a piss take? They have a couple of tracks on their MySpace page that are far better than this, maybe they are serious? Link time, here you go, www.runofthemillrecords.co.uk or www.myspace.com/pifco1

...and on we go, this next one here sounds, well it sounds like we shouldn’t bother saying anything, it sounds like you don’t really need to know...    and this next one! This one sounds like Tight Fit or Black Lace or the 1983 Eurovision entry from Belgium... enough, who’s next? 

MY LUMINARIES – Parasol (Cottage Industries) – Sounding like a lot of those slightly epic indie rock things that fall somewhere near that space not far from the polite gap between Muse, U2 and Elbow. There’s freedom in the burning sun they sing in their indie-epic way, something’s killing her from the inside and surrendering to the tides and broken skin and freedom as we walk as one... yeah well, um, formulaic indie rock and U2 never meant jackshit around here and no plans to go walking towards any burning sun in the name of freedom this week thank you very much. I was at one of those ‘secret’ Muse gigs once, it was being filmed, I was asked to either leave or look more enthusiastic, I guess those enthusiastic people who were there in the Camden pub that day would love this. Freedom as we walk as one and all that. Go out from the cities, walk down towards the sea and make your own mind up, these lyrics are killing from the inside. Put away your parasol, no surrendering to any tide, killing from the inside you say... what is all this nonsense about optimism and getting out of the rat race and back to your home anyway? Oh look, not the greatest lyrics ever, a politely pleasant indie rock tune for those who like a bit of the mildy epic in a Muse or U2 or Elbow or Editors or all the others kind of way, no surrendering to their tide or any of this Elbow Editors stuff today... www.myspace.com/myluminaries

Not a great week for singles then, but this Cate Le Bon just may have been single of the week on the even the very best of Captain Ahab weeks (and it certainly got lots of enthusiastic who was that feedback when we played it on the radio show last week... )

CATE LE BON – Shoeing The Bones (Irony Bored)  - This is just beautiful in every way, this is a shiver down the spine piece of simple uncluttered perfection. Perfect in terms of the simple tune, the simple lyrics, the simple uncluttered delight of it - everything right (including the production and the “not quite right guitar sounds” and the way those other perfectly right instruments come in at just the right time (every time). So deliciously warm and those notes get right inside and touch those bones her delightful voice is shoeing, a song that just gets inside in such a delightfully warm way. And yes I know she’s from Wales, but this sounds like a perfect piece of gripping English folk and these may be hard times to fall in love and yes if you listen she is so so gorgeously obviously Welsh but this with this song Cate Le Bon is Sandy Denny good. Timeless and rich, English folk rock goodness that’s not anyway near as obvious as that lazy bit of writing makes it sound and diolch and da indeed for this is so easy to fall in love with – and yes Welsh but you know what I’m trying to say. Perfect in the clever way that every uncluttered sound and every single word matters so much, every considered note is there serving a purpose and just being perfect and play it again and again. And if Cate Le Bon and her delightfully glowing songs haven’t found their way to your heart yet then this is the song that will do it. She can be darker than this, she can be more experimental and lo-fi and mysteriously bright-eyed than this, but this really is the song to take you by the hand and lead you down her beautifully dark path with all the sparks and ebbs and flows and the shadows. And these are fine times to fall in love, just a beautiful song in every way – www.catelebon.com

  Thems were the singles this week, we may just do it all again next Monday.... maybe? 
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15th MARCH '10....
15th March, that's Captain Ahab there, this is the calm before is the storm.... SINGLES time, we live at the mercy of these falling bricks that are the singles that demand our attention, there she blows Captain! What we got here? We still care about singles, little seven inch things that you download and then flip to check the b-side... 

COCO ROSIE – Lemonade (PIAS) - Parisian sisters with some delicately beguiling French pop that comes with a touch of very subtle electronica, a hint of folk and maybe just a hint of a Bjork feel in there with their uncluttered sugar-sweet glide. Real home-made lemonade poured from a friendly jug on a sunny day and nothing like that mass produced fizzy stuff in a can – www.myspace.com/cocorosie

SWING YOUTH – Jennifer /Hey Keith (Bloody Awful Poetry) - Punchy power pop and upbeat 80’s sounding new wave indie wholesomeness from East London, classic bit of infectious indie power pop that might have found itself on Stiff back in the days when Stiff was the label. They sound like The Motors or The Cars or Joe Jackson of maybe The Vapors with their sharp sound and Jenny sitting on there with all the surprise when you open your eyes and.... Infectious as infectious pop singles should be, all bouncy and new wave and bright light good and hey Keith...  Good good good, a proper single is what this is (only thing wrong is the unexciting artwork, don’t let the dull artwork fool yer)... www.myspace.com/weareswingyouth

CLUB SMITH – The Loss EP (All Sorted) – Now we’re on a run, good week for singles, told you the single wasn’t dead. Club Smith are from Leeds, they sing of misdirection, they certainly don’t suffer from any kind of misdirection. This how we hoped those Kaiser Chiefs would sound, always felt let down by those Chiefs, this is how it should have been - classic pop once more. Four tracks, all good enough to be the lead track. Lush indie pop, big pop, bold pop with wide pointed eyes and hook-baited breath. You know what, the lead track may be the weakest of the four, something in their water and you could never say this pop was wrong. Touch of the Heaven Seventeens in there (take that as high compliment). You could never say this pop was wrong, no you could never say...  the art of the single is very much alive, haven’t got an axe to grind, all four of these tracks would make excellent a-side pop singles, classic pop... damn good week for singles – www.clubsmith.co.uk

Alright not every single we throw on is good, this one that’s on now really isn’t worth a mention, don’t need no horse hoof in no soup. Everything does get a listen, not everything is covered... this is a non-stop operation, we are dust junkies and we’re busy cutting stencils to spray on the reject discs...nothing goes to waste here, recycle recycle recycle, next please... 

S.C.U.M. – Signal 3, Paris (download) – As S.C.U.M travel across Europe performing shows, they create new music in new environments, a body of work called Signals (so the press release tells us).   Taking studio time in each city they visit and recording new works specific to each location. Each Signal is available for a limited period as a download, signals from around the globe... “Signals are rapid fire experimentations in sound and visual information, immediate access to the creative output of a band, bypassing all time consuming process, a fluid connection, a conversation, a discourse...”    Signal one and two came from Berlin and Warsaw, signal three comes from Paris, recorded in October 2009 and released on March 22nd 2010 (doesn’t that kind of defeat the idea of immediate access?), 
         Signal three doesn’t sound that Parisian to these ears, doesn’t really feel like anywhere other than any vaguely dark city on any vaguely dark Autumn night. Is a good track though, a slow building piece of atmospheric word-rich melancholy from the first days of winter... just not really suggesting it has come from any particular place, like it lots, not really feeling Paris though... www.myspace.com/scum1968 or www.youtube.com/scumsignals

LUTHER RUSSELL – Motorbike EP (Wool) – An EP of songs taken from Luther’s upcoming fifth album (so it say here in the blurb that came with the disc). Opens with a mellow slice of slightly psychedelic easy on the ear Americana, follows it up with something a little more country flavoured and maybe even more mellowed out and even easier on the ear.... Song three opens like it might be a lo-fi piece of Beck style mellow gold with that slide guitar and the easy beat that’s going down, until it turns in to a retro piece of Seventies sounding blues that kind of wants to be a little Hendrix but comes out more Lenny Kravitz (that wasn’t meant to come out sounding so insulting as it did). Mellow songs, subtle laid back blend of classic American rock, blues, country flavoured Americana and rather pleasant relaxed psychedelia. Fourth track rocks out a little more, sounds like a prime piece of Big Star, Byrds, Teenage Fanclub alternative pop... and on we go... Nothing groundbreaking or different, all done with a sense of style and a touch of mellow class though, kind of enjoyable, rather liked it, six song EP... www.myspace.com/lutherrussell

Time to cut to the chase, we knew before we started listing to all the others that this was single of the week  And don’t be telling us a free download is not a single, don’t be getting technical on anyone’s ass, we told you before about the rules around here... 

SINGLE OF THE WEEK

CAPTAIN AHAB – Acting Hard (Deathbomb Arc) - One of those things that just stops you, what’s this!? Played it last night on the radio and straight away got a response.  People from Derby, people from Boston (Boston Mass, not Boston Lincs, have we got any readers or listeners in Boston Lincs?), people from Belfast, this track opened the show and stopped everyone listening to last night’s radio show. Now I hate it when everything get described as stunning, that word is the most annoyingly overused word in the English language, especially when it comes to lazy music reviews. We make a point of never saying anything is stunning. This is stunning! Here comes the notes from the radio show playlist.... 
        “How good was this opening track tonight! Sometimes you hear a piece of music and yes! Lots of exciting cutting edge music waiting to challenge if you know where to look, Captain Ahab are from Los Angeles. Brian from Foot Village and Deathbomb Arc brought them to our attention, he talked of a “strange mix of Viking chants, harsh noise, Hyphy and Steve Reichian timing” and yeah, but he was only telling half of it. We got a new favourite band here (and judging by the almost instant Twitter/e.mail response we’re not alone!). This is why we do this Organ thing! Band like this who sound like no or nothing else and who sound so damn good while go about the business of sounding unique”. 
              Acting Hard is the opening track off the forthcoming (6th April) album called The End Of Irony, but but you can have this track right now as a free download via http://captainahab.bandcamp.com you can chase up Captain A via www.myspace.com/captainahab you can find out about the constantly good DeathbombArc via www.deathbombarc.com. Oh look, the track is there and free, there to get you addicted to the Captain, go download, go take a risk risk, delete the file if you don’t like it, we guarantee you won’t delete it, you will not be back slapping us for being so sure... just be a f**king believer, I will be your f**king god.. get you f**k on... hang on that’s the album, you need this message, these are not lies, pay attention or you’ll pay for your crime...  death to false techno... enough, back to the single, oh no, here we go, shake your body like a whore... the album rules toooo... this is the calm before the storm, raise your goblets high. What is that honking sample, that sample has been bugging me for hours now! Is that a Camel sample? Off Nude? Time to be out of here, single reviews done for another week...   good week, no staring in the middle of no desert here... 

Hang on....  late entry...

SINGLE OF THE WEEK 2 

CITIZENS – Try Smiling (Wolf Among Wolves) - Scuzzy urgency from Glasgow, wired up edgy three piece with some jagged guitar and a touch of shouting to wake you up of a morning. That throaty post-hardcore jaggedness and that hint of a mathematical barb or two that’ll hook your bottom lip. A touch of musical challenge going on here, a sound we’re all familiar with, I’m imagining pasty ratty skinny boys in washed out T-shirts bent over instruments and stomping on peddles, a familiar ferocity but these three citizens do have an edge of their own, a positive energy. Another good band from Glasgow, Glasgow bands are impressing us right now. Forth track is a clever little instrumental called Self Indulgence, self indulgently good indeed, while lead track Don’t Be Late kicks down the doors with a killer riffs and some shouty urgency – could name drop a load of mostly U.S post hardcore Helmet type reference points here, won’t though - this is good, four fine tracks and a clear declaration of intent from Glasgow, four different slices here, no one trick pony these Citizens – www.myspace.com/citizensuk or www.myspace.com/wolfamongwolvesuk
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8th MARCH '10....
8th March... 45 time... 

SINGLE OF THE WEEK 

KILL THE CAPTAINS – Rummy (Armellodie) – Sheffield’s Kill The Captains back with a new three track collection of slightly scratchy slices of that double jointed pop of theirs. Scratchy English new wave flavoured wrong pop with a more than healthy skip in that slightly off-line step of theirs. Think something near Les Savy Fav, a not so lush and far more scratchy XTC, that if Pavement were from and English town sound of bands like Herzoga... that smell of gin so you let him win.  B-side Reverse Psychiatry is the stand out song of three here with that shimmering two-note repetition that slowly builds up to some kind of frantic battle of ascending chord patterns and swooping vultures and.... Third track Supermarket Sweep is a “stripped-down yarn”, a “feel good ditty” about a security guard being trampled to death on the first morning of a Wallmart Black Friday shop sale...  Three rather different songs that both stand on their own and work so well together as a collective whole - maybe Supermarket Sweep is the standout track? Then again Rummy is rather good... www.myspace.com/killthecaptains or www.myspace.com/armellodie

Also worth your ears this week..

GET WELL SOON – Angry Young Man (City Slang) – Gorgeously simple, cleverly arranged, slightly orchestral, tingly bright – one of those put it on repeat and play it again singles. Poetic goodness, classical depth, you will know, you tried to hide... Single from the new Get Well Soon album Vexations, the project of classically trained singer and multi-instrumentalist Konstantin Gropper. When Gropper isn’t making gloriously good pop he’s busy composing film scores, the latest being for Wim Wenders. There’s a depth to this, a gorgeously uplifting depth, beautiful details, every note matters, every word has a purpose, just a beautiful piece of timelessly good pop, rich and alive... www.cityslang.com or www.myspace.com/youwillgetwellsoon

THE BROTHERS MOVEMENT – Blind / Sister (Rocket Girl) - Another excellent moment from The Brothers Movement, they have an Echo And The Bunnymen feel, a voice almost as rich as Ian McCulloch (that is to be taken as high compliment). The creamy controlled side of The Jesus And Mary Chain, that full-bodied 80’s feel. Two rather accomplished songs from the rather impressively classy Dublin band. Most bands would have held these two songs as singles in their own right rather then being confident enough in the rest of their material to hand them both over as a very impressive double a-side. Significant band emerging here – www.myspace.com/thebrothersmovement

DANNY FONTAINE AND THE HORNS OF FURY – No More Girlfriends (El Bomb) – Catchy London ska pop and another one of those big ensembles with lots of horns, Madness moves and such. They keep on coming and they’re all throwaway fun (especially live), Imperial Leisure and such, The Horns here are as good as any of them... Catchy ska pop should you want it, bit of class to what they’re doing here, can’t say the idea of yet another horned up ska pop band excites us much but they do do their thing rather week  – www.hornsoffury.com

DEVIL DRIVER – Another Night In London (Roadrunner) - More of their always good modern blister-metal... Blister-metal - I like that. It take people like you, to make people like me, no future for you and.... blister blister. You know, as slick modern glossy corporate toe-the-party-line hot topic throwaway kill switch metal goes, the engaging Devil Driver do have an edge on most... No great substance to what they do or anything, kind of satisfying in an instant fast food kind of way  www.devildriver.com

HOLE – Skinny Little Bitch (Mercury) – A free download thing ahead of the new ‘Hole’ album. Courtney railing on some skinny little bitch and liar liar lie alone and don’t flip with me... or f**k with me or something like that. You know she kind of lost the plot, the edge and everything else sometime ago and she does spout a lot of horsepoop but this is nowhere near as bad as it could have been. Just maybe angry Courtney hasn’t lost it all after all? Does it hurt? Maybe just go slower? A lot more scathing and raw and biting that we really expected it to be. Could it be that is may just be worth bothering with Courtney still after all? Has she found the plot again? The download was free for a day, you missed it now if you weren’t paying attention on the day it was free, we did tell you... 
 

1st MARCH '10....
Singles and things things things, some weeks they flow, other weeks they just don’t. Endless CDs throwing at the music crunching machine employed to play these little round silver discs only to have the discontented machine spit them back out in a fit of indifference. Is there really any really real point in really writing about any of these singles and things this week? Really? If it isn’t really exciting then should we really bother? Answers on a postcard as a preamble to something or other.... Here's those worth a word this week... 

1st March, that's Viv Albertine there with her guitar..

THE IRREPRESSIBLES – In This Shirt (CoOp) –  First single from the rather rich full bodied new album Mirror Mirror. Glorious strings, richly voiced, orchestral ‘performance orchestra’, powerfully big, theatrical, playful, soaring beauty, cathartic goodness, costumed drama, orchestrated pop...  www.theirrepressibles.com

SIR YES SIR – Not Excited (Hope Club) – Gloriously frantic scratchy mess and we don’t need the press release to tell us they’re from Manchester, and this is where we should say something and and and... Urgent set of songs, scratching and twitching and wired and Northern stoicism and The Fall messing with Dinosaur Jr and raw and like it might just really matter... www.myspace.com/siryessiryessir

BROKEN SOCIAL SCENE – World Sick (Download) – New Broken Social Scene, taste off the forthcoming Forgiveness Rock thing and available as a free download from the website. More of that tingling jangling North American uplifting bright and breezy indieness that they all seem to be doing right now. That slightly hopeful, slightly euphoric, almost generic sound of North American indie rock right now. That ‘dream-pop’ thing they’re all doing like they’re all one big band. I know we said all this last week and it isn’t that we don’t like this great big lump of a North American indie-rock sound, just that, we’re kind of hearing a reasonably good  slight variation on the same theme from a different set of music makers almost every day now. one great big animal collective of mercury revs and... You can download thing legal freebie taste (in exchange for your e.mail address on a mailing list) from www.brokensocialscene.ca

MAHAVIRA – Half Light (self release) – London band with a four track EP (in the most boringly uninspiring of covers). All Fretless guitars and ‘clever’ playing and some kind of alternative 90’s sounding clean cut, slightly dark, slightly moody technical alt.rock. The image of pony-tailed seriously earnest musicians with guitar equipment logos on their t-shirts and more interested in the gauge of string and the right plectrum then any kind of notions of art or danger... Oh look, technically clever alternative rock three piece, touch of Soundgarden, hint of Kings X, modern Rush. They’re playing the Dutch Fretless Guitar festival soon, the notion of such a festival sounds like a muso nightmare to me, if the thought excites you, then I guess this rather new young band are going to be for you - they certainly can play.  They talk of a fusion of hard rock and classical Indian music, can’t find any kind of hint of the classical Indian music part of their fusion on this EP - that might have made them far more exciting... Fans of technical heavy rock and tight cleaver playing will appreciate this, good luck to them, hell is other people’s opinions, they do their things well enough, crying out for a bit of soul and a touch of dirt though and do something about that boring artwork! www.mahavira.net

SERGEANT BUZFUS – Popes 4 Cops 1(Blang) – In which Sergeant Buzfuz rework their Here Come The Popes single yet again. More tales of Papacy doings and devilish corruption, they seem to have been reworking this single for a good few years now... three more slight variations on a admittedly fine theme via an addictively good tune and www.sergeantbuzfuz.com

SINGLE OF THE WEEK 

VIV ALBERTINE – Flesh EP (Ecstatic Peace) - Sounding a little like a sugar sweet slightly mystically cosmic Genesis P. Orridge via a naughty Syd Barrett, sounding all bright and breezy and kind of psychedelic in that post-punk way of things... Back to recording music after a break of some twenty-five years and I guess this really is how the now middle-aged singer of those brilliant Slits songs should sound in 2010. Wood to believe in, concrete to believe in, time not to believe in, Marc Bolan and all his curls and songs of love and very personal and almost confessional “mind-worm melodies and kinky boots”. Slightly dark but extremely cute and don’t let anyone tell you it wasn’t love and... Four fine songs, four strong songs, personal songs, deliciously honest open very real songs and don’t let anyone tell you is isn’t.... Single of the week by a long long way and out right now as a limited edtion of just 500 on Thurston Moore's Ecstatic peace label -  www.vivalbertine.com

     Meanwhile outside there the first hint of Spring that is this sunny first day of March and someone is playing Jilted John very loud
 

22nd FEB '10....
Airbourne yesterdaySingle time is here again, there's an Australian man stood right there who wants to know if you want a fight over it? 

SINGLES SINGLES SINGLES... 22nd FEB... Single time.comes around once a week, just like line drawing, beans, cats, eels, easter eggs, daffodils and a million house wives everyday pick a tin of beans and say review the fuggin' singles and cut the crap.... best hat on, politeness is all...

Here we go...

SENNEN – Age of Denial (Hungry Audio) – Classy sounding melodic alternative indie pop single from the Norwich four piece. Their most melodically lightweight release yet, that’s not necessarily a bad thing. Think breezy radio friendly Mercury Rev poppy brightness and shoe-gazing flavours. Sennen keep on coming up with these rather decent releases, never quite seem to impose any kind of identity of their own though, always vaguely sounding like lots of things and doing it all rather well without ever really imposing themselves... Another good release...but...but... will we remember it in an hour or so? www.myspace.com/sennenwidows

THE KISSAWAY TRAIL – SDP(Co-Op) - Is North American alternative indie rock morphing towards one big blob of pleasant enough sounding Mercury Rev flavoured Animal Collectiveness? Is it blanding a little as it all blends in to one big amorphous baked bean (in an admittedly rather tasty sauce) to be served up again and again by an endless stream of almost identical bands? The Kissaway Trail aren’t from North America, they’re from Odense, Denmark and they’re as good at doing this North American alternative indie dream-pop thing as anyone. SDP is an enjoyable enough single with all that dream-pop epicness and the uplifting church bells and the panoramic ambition of it all... But isn’t it all sounding a little safe, a little familiar, a little like all the other things that are a little like Mercury Rev and Animal Collective and baked beans (in an admittedly rather tasty sauce) that can be found North American space between the Mercury Collective? www.myspace.com/thekissawaytrail

PRIESTESS – Lady Killer (Tee Pee) - Does this sound like Rainbow’s Spotlight Kid, has everything already been done? Are The 17 going to put out a single? Do keep feeling the need to sing those Spotlight lyrics along to the Canadian band’s latest non-more-heavy-metal single. Nothing wrong with sounding like Rainbow, no one else does these days and this is a righteous slab of galloping old school pre-thrash proper NWOBHM flavoured heavy metal goodness and well... um... heavy metal baked beans are better than most baked beans – www.myspace.com/priestess or www.priestessband.com
In the UK this week touring with Big Elf but you knew that already right? 

Are you sensing that this week’s pile of singles isn't inspiring us much? Beanz meanz you really should be here to hear the things you really don’t want to hear, the one we hear here, the one’s not worth a bean of a mention. The pile of orange singles in thin tomato sauce that really aren’t worth a mention is much bigger than the measly few we’ve just about found enthusiasm for this week.... next... at least Airbourne are on their way, their baked beans are the very best, we know hat thwy taste like and we want more of the same.. next...

THE HEIGHTS – The Land, The Ocean, The Distance (We Are Heights) -  Well they pulled that opening track back from the brink with that epic finish... Mostly though, this is the same old razor ripping throatal screamo give that man a Locket and tell him to shut shit up with his infernal screaming! Oh, right on cue, here comes the slightly more melodic other one, same old two singer screamo beano metal one trick pony...  They’re from Welwyn Garden City, that figures, they sound like they’re from one of those places - Milton Keynes, Welwyn, Telford, all faded blandness and England gone to seed and the thing is, somewhere in this stew of vocal clichés and Killswitch Engage juvenile tantrum throwing there actually a rather decent forward looking epic metal flavoured post-hardcore outfit trying to break out.  This is not what we wanted, we’re still worlds apart...  All hope is not lost though and yes nurse, pass the pliers, there’s a damn good chance that, as flawed and clichéd as this debut EP is, there is hope for this patient and we suspect the next single The Heights release (or maybe the one after that) might just be rather good... Yes, there is a good band fighting to break out somewhere here, maybe next time around them...? www.myspace.com/weareheights

CRASHED OUT – The One And Only (self release) - Low budget cur-price Sainsbury’s own brand basic tin no thrills dent in the side punk-pop baked beans and some second hand Wildhearts North East grit. Didn’t do much for us, might interest you – www.crashed-out.co.uk

AND SO I WATCH YOU FROM AFAR – The Letters EP (Smalltown America) – From Northern Ireland with some feisty instrumental post-rock flavoured energy and an ear-catching twist or two here and there. Kind of need all this to push forward a little more now though, running on the spot a little ian’t it? They got some drive, they’re certainly not content to keep things nice and polite and they piss all over the look-at-us aren’t-we-importantness of those not-as-good-as-they’d-like-to-think-they-are bands like Mogwai or Pelican. Not satisfying enough though, sounds like a lot of bands we hear in soundchecks waiting for their singer who claims he got stuck on the tube to finally show up... Hang on, there goes a good bit, that bit sounds like heavy metal Battles, they do have flashes of real inspiration...  we’ll stay here on this fence and see what happens next... www.myspace.com/andsoiwatchyoufromafar

EASTSTRIKESWEST – Stumble (Thirty Days of Night) More extremely clean cut epicness of a highly polished rather heroic Radiohead, Mew, Muse, U2 nature... All too perfect and all in need of having some dirt rubbed in to that faR too perfectly polished face. For fans of clean-cut Muse type indie rock epicness, not for people who don’t always wash their hands after they take a piss. If ever there was a need for a bit of feedback or just a tiny bit of dirt, a hint that something might go wrong this is it, all too perfect and lacking in heart or soul and get it out of here now please, take it away before I stop being polite and tell you what I really think of this over-produced piece of... – www.myspace.com/eaststrikewestband

EELS – A Line In The Dirt (E Works)  – A delicate first single and a nice piece of gentle reflectiveness from the “critically acclaimed” new album End Times.... all very nice.... www.eelstheband.com
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AIRBOURNE - London Borderline 2008 (Organart)At last, throw it on... SINGLE OF THE WEEK BY A MILLION MILES

AIRBOURNE – No Way But The Hard Way (Roadrunner) – Ah yes, new Airbourne, exactly the same as old Airbourne, which in turn is exactly like AC/DC were before they got old and tired and stadiumortis set in. No worries, we don’t need no old AC/DC, not when we got fresh new AC/DC! And no, we don’t want Airbourne getting all experimental or boundasry pushing or anything else, we just want them plugged in, turned up and rocking the flip out. We want to know what do they do for money honey, where do they get their kicks? Airbourne back again and once again its a long way to the top when you want to rock ‘n roll, Airbourne baked beans and the goodshit type of baked beans in the finest regulation no messing tomato sauce and there ain’t no substitute for a stack of Heinz baked Marshalls a never ending tour van ride with a can or two of beer shotgun'd right at yet ....  The Aussie rockers are right, you know they’re right! There is no way but the hard way! 2008 they were debuting at the Borderline in front of about two hundred of us beer spilling scumbags and this year they’re packing out the big fat Hammy O, climbing to the top rather quickly then, and rightly so, they do it properly – and don’t come here telling me the place is called the Apollo now either! The place is called the Odeon, the Hammy fuggin’ O! The place over which you don’t sleep ‘till you get there! The place Cliff Burton played the best gig his band metallica ever did and nearly managed to get blown off by openers Anthrax! The O is the home of Motorhead, the home of metal and the place that Airbourne are rightly headlining with their walls of Marshalls and their rivers of beer and their dirty hair and their whole lotta everything you could ever want this coming April... Single off the second album that’s out next week then - sounds just like everything off the first album and for once this is a very very good baked bean drenched thing. Airbourne are a good thing, proper rock played on ten with no messing about is a good thing - if you want blood you got more of it, dance and sing, rock ‘n roll is king and woof woof woof, bark bark bark I got a rose tattoo a fast right hand and a hard rocking band, take it to the top, never gonna stop, pass the beer, get out of the way, this is single of the week, we’re out of here, if you don’t like Airbourne this ain’t the place for you, a million house wives everyday pick up a tin of beans and say bark bark bark, get your fuggin’ jumbo jet out of my airport – www.airbournerock.com
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15th FEB '10....
To boldly stay where we were meant to say, no more going to the moon said the man with all his audacity of hope, let’s scale this week’s mountain of singles...

SINGLES SINGLES SINGLES... 15th FEB...

SINGLE OF THE WEEK

LONELADY – Intuition / Bloedel (Warp) - Sounds like one of those really good ear-catching left-field new wave flavoured pop singles you’d occasionally catch in amongst all the dross on Top Of The Pops back in the day. Sounds a bit like one of the better Comsat Angels singles (they were good, won’t have a thing said against them) or a far more stable Grace Jones messing with a healthy touch of Joy Division  (but not in that obvious way all those post-Franz boy bands think they touch on Joy Division and somehow never do). Lonelady sounds nothing like any of that really but you get the drift don’t you?  Sounds like a PiL single with Johnny handing over vocals to some kind of intriguing girl who knows as much as he does... And then there’s the b-side and I know I keep saying anything strange sounds like Liars brilliance but this really does... like she’s dragged you off in a bag to the forest or something - some kind of bizarre pagan ritual and one more time for the record, a strange disturbing lullaby that counteracts the 80’s crispness of the a-side so so well . She’s Julie Campbell, she’s rather good, and this single is excellent. Paul Morley said she was a love/hate child of those Bunnymen, he’s right (and he is one of the few music journalists that deserves real respect, always worth listening to) and this fine two track just sounds like one of those strange left field pop singles you’d find somewhere in the 80’s, one of those discoveries you’d love forevermore.. Those Liars via The Slits and strange instrumentation and a lament of quiet again and.... One of those classic singles you’ll talk about for years - like you talk about that Ex Post Facto single or the first time you really heard The Associates or got what The Fall really were or that single the Raincoats once put out, or A Certain Ratio and... She’s from Manchester, of course she is, thrilliant single...   www.myspace.com/hiholonelady
 

ALSO CHECK OUT

MARIA & THE MIRRORS – Omar (Parlour) – Now we would have reviewed this last week if Levi Stubbs hadn’t stepped in, it is rather good (but this is a thankless task and Omar coming, a hunting we will go...) and she does headpeck with those yelps and screams. Excellent single, came out last week, delicious drum patterns that sound like they’ve fallen out of the Foot Village school of hardcore tribalism, that or some Eastern island where rabid trance-like states of polyrhythmic forward movement drive on to a stage of glorious Din. Foot Village, Liars, Gang Gang Dance and as someone else pointed out a kind of deranged Yoko Ono yelping in a most magnificent way.   Well they didn’t point out she sounds deranged, that was an observation from over here where mentions of Polly Styrene and Throbbing Gristle also have to be made.  Dream crazy treats and Netto disco sounds and sorry we were late, blame the carpenter and the moon trip being cancelled and watching Omar and series one again and that wall of love stuff that was going down last week  - excellent single, glorious noise, fine band – www.myspace.com/mariamirrors or www.parlour-records.com

AVOSETTA – Of Our Lives (Burnished Salmon) - Oh gawd, go fetch that twelve gauge pump action big blue emo gun, we got yet another band who sound like they want to be that dreadful Enter Shikari lot! And they cite Finch, Thrice and Alexisonfire as influences (not the proper Finch I wager, the proper Finch made fine fine prog, the proper Finch  would not influence this poopheep of generic emo-flavoured post-hardcore conformity nonsense). Though to be reasonable and fair as we reach for the blue gun ammunition, Avosetta do do this highly polished generically-tedious post-hardcore melodic emo thing rather well. They got all that punchable screamo-emo quiet/loud double-vocal follow-the-rule-book stuff sorted and hey, if you do like this dreadful stuff then this Norwich band do it as well as anyone. All polished up and well produced and  technical playing and yes all very accomplished and get it out of here now, dreadful! 
         “Why did you review it then?” I hear your oily lawyer yell, well they do do this awfully dreadful stuff rather well and  they are a new young band trying to make their way in this big bad world and it isn't harming me and if it sounds like you’re thing then you got the link now and see, I can sometimes be nice... Enough with being nice already, gun please, throw the disc up... bang... sorted, that’ll learn him to get all screamo emo Enter Shikaty in here – www.myspace.com/avosetta

MISTERLEE – I didn’t Kill Anyone Today (Rubber Czech)  - You are what you are, you are what you are, what you are, try cutting you own hair.... Found this in a the camouflage of a reject bin and with a badge of an unfriendly white flag firmly fixed to it... Very much an unfriendly f**k shit up kind of badge... Sounding like the finest work of Misterlee so far... Take all your bastard souls and f**king egos and your badges of whatever and let the music be the thing that it really should be all about. Second single of the forthcoming album and it really needs you to cut to the chase and let the whole album flow rather than just this rather good single. Some kind of experimental wordy lo-fi anti-folk punk thing and try cutting your own hair pretty boy and a tightly tied white flag and scratchiness and tunes divine and yes indeed. Misterlee sounding better that ever, more alive than ever, a little more angry than before and take it all and howl and scratch and dance around that scratchy-thin guitar and all the fine energy... Don’t bother with the single, you need the album to get the full flow of the hardware and the slightly frantic wiredness of it all... More next week, more on air, more on line, more on land and sea and two eggs for breakfast along the pristine paths of those Dutch canals - no grudge in the here and now, wear no badge of anything, fly your giant Ajax flag. Great single, taken from his best work yet, the work of a real maverick, Misterlee comes to full bloom like he’s been threatening to for a few years now, album is what you really need though – the fine things we find in reject bins, it is about the music isn’t it? Take all your bastard souls and f**king egos and your badges of whatever and...  Recommended leap forward from Misterlee then, nice one sir, deserves better treatment, we shouldn't be finding things like this  in reject bins posted to people who don't exist should we? www.myspace.com/leeallatson

LAMB OF GOD – Grace (Roadrunner) – Lamb Of God getting all thoughtful and mellow and gentle - well for the first twenty seconds or so before it all explodes with the usual onslaught of Lamb of God kitchensink-throwing metal and cramming everything in with the riffs and the growls and all that modern metal slickness. It all whirls past in a growl of well produced noise, slick guitars and really not much grace all things considered - a whirl that whirls like some kind of extreme metal whirl that's strapped in to some kind of safety harness and all ready for the mass consumption of the parade of the Download festival-going corporate metal generation.... Decent enough but we really need our metal with a little more danger don't we? A  little more in terms of rough edges, dirty fingernails and just a hint that just maybe something might go wrong and the ride may come off the track before they take the money and we all get safely to the end and go home for tea... www.lamb-of-god.com

SWORN AMONGST – Severance (Rising) -  More metal, choppy technical metal that’s pushing cleverly towards those extreme areas of modern metal life.. A kind of Pantera-like set of metallic values that flirt with a touch of Meshuggah what with the pace-shifting foot-changing gallop of it all. Decent enough single off the young British metal band’s forthcoming third album, bodes well, have they taken a step up? We shall see... www.swornamongst.co.uk

THE LOW ANTHEM – To The Ghosts Who Write History Books (Bella Union) – Another almost perfect moment of beauty from the always beautiful Low Anthem. That Charlie Darwin single was probably single of last year and this is more of their refined wistful gliding peaceful alt.americana flavoured folk-touched beauty. Everything about The Low Anthem is just right – www.lowanthem.com or www.myspace.com/lowanthem

SINGLE OF THE WEEK 2

GALLEONS – Swans (Casket) - Stop the boat and all who sail with her, this is more like it (just ploughed through a whole stew of mostly metal things that didn’t make the grade and so don’t get to use up time and space being reviewed here), Galleons just stopped us calling a halt to this week’s single reviews. Three tracks, three slices of million-notes-per-second extreme math high-wire trapeze jumping escape plans and yes! We can indeed watch these cities burn. Galleons are from Nottingham, they’re an onslaught of tantrums and textures and light and shade, and this is about as far away from the effortless grace of swans as you could possible get (besides those couple of seconds almost two minutes in). No swans here, more like a thousand epileptic woodpeckers going off and things - jack-hammer tantrums, screaming vocals, screaming riffs, eclectic technical extreme prog-math-metal. Yappy extremes, choppy chaos and all harnessed and under some kind of gloriously positive control. This is good, twists, turns, twisted-blood inducing metal onslaughts and all kinds of earths unfolding, come grab my hand, come join with me – a bit like Dillinger once were before they sold out and compromised, yes, that good, all three tracks – www.myspace.com/galleonsuk
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8th FEB '10....
SINGLES SINGLES SINGLES... 8th FEB...
         What we got here waiting this week then?  Cut to the chase, this week’s single of the week is from BACK TO THE FUTURE THE RIDE...

UFFIE – MC’s Can Kiss (Because) – kiss my ass electro pop, something to with My Space numbers and not flipin’ with her (or some word that sounded like flipin’ that may have featured a u as second letter and a c as third), don’t ask us, electro pop? None of it as good as the rather impossible headpecker Gene Serene, wonder where she got to? Kind of like this chessy electro-crunch in a throw away kind of way, suspect we’d be really throwing it away after a couple more plays though... Next... www.myspace.com/uffie

          Last in the series of DANCE TO THE RADIO’s 4x12” series of compilation singles, played the last one on the radio last night, the mighty chunk of  Chickenhawk... The four contributors to this forth and final instalment of the D.T.T.R series features a track each from DRINK UP BUTTERCUP, MILK WHITE WHITE TEETH, SUPER EXTRA BONUS PARTY and PAUL THOMAS SAUNDERS, none of them are really doing anything much that stands out from the current alternative/indie/call-it-what-you-will crop of slight variations on a theme heard many times. Which leads us to consider The 17 and the possibility that their notion that all music has already been made could well be right... but them last night’s radio show shoots that one down don’t yer think? New EXTRA LIFE and such...  Paul Thomas Saunders is the best of the four on this Dance To The Radio collection, timeless singer/songwriter of a certain discernible quality, sounds like those people on the records your dad would buy in the 70’s and play on repeat on the eight track player in the car alongside his James Last and his Tony Christie down those Avenues And Alleyways and that Mantovani’s Music For The Motorway that everyone had... www.dancetotheradio.com

Next please
             Oh hell, one of those wet lettuce emo boy singers is what we have up next, you know the sort, whinny lyrics with a wimpy guitar sound and an annoyingly wet voice, is it any wonder she doesn’t want you? She’s probably off listening Motley Crue or something by now, you’ve driven her over the edge with your whinny songs that no one wants... 
          Next... 
    PLASTISCINES – Bitch (Because) -  “The New Wave of Teenage Rock ‘n Roll” is what the press release with this one is trying to sell us here... Clean cut, slick, over-produced sanitised radio friendly all-girl pop packaged as rebellion and what with Iggy selling insurance on yer telly and a Runaways film any moment now then why the hell not? All sounds rather safe and manufactured and at least that woman of the telly who covered Wild Horses seems to have a touch of soul. “Parisian riot grrrl rockers” and the next big thing say the press release hype, yeah sure, riot grrrl! Go tell Tribe 8 to get doing things again, the world needs them more than ever, go get Huggy Bear on the phone, where’s Pussy Face when you need ‘em. This?  Throwaway over-produced slick pop harmlessness for people who thought The Stokes were radical  – www.myspace.com/plastiscine

NAVEL – John Q Public (Louisville) – This is more like it, more from Navel, haven’t we heard this single before though? Didn’t we review this last year? Raw messy car crash of a feedback drenched single. Raw production, overheating amps, dirty grungy punky mess and maybe we heard it on a demo last year? Yeah we did, stuck in our head see, good things always do. They’re from the Swiss mountains, they’re the real deal, they sound like they give an f, they’re making music rather than selling product and yeah, so what if they sound like all those 90’s bands doing the grunge-punk thing, they’re doing it properly, it sounds like it matters to them, they sound like raw Mudhoney with a knife to your skinny throat... and thank flip for that, a single that matters at last – www.myspace.com/navelofswitzerland or www.louisville-records.de

 BACK TO THE FUTURE THE RIDE –  Back To The Future The Ride (Deathbomb Arc) - Some weird wired off in the distance microphones in a different room to the band instrumental synth driven Ace Of Spaces, or at least that’s what these ears detect through the fog and hiss of track one. Yer man Brian from Foot Village making some kind of solo electronic musical sound art or something like that, the mysterious Ace sounding track is just called ‘Intro’, second track is a resonant drone called Sitting Under The Pyramid, sounds more like sitting inside the pyramid chamber if you ask these ears (that’s a compliment) - and on we go with the rather organic drone-hum, something to do with “zero-gravity yoga jams, corporate mystercism, capitalist drones” and well, you can download it for free, keep it if you like it, throw it in your virtual bin if you don’t, I burnt mine on to a CD, made a cover, filled the rest of the space up with Crass tracks and Yes tracks and one Four Tops track I downloaded from somewhere or other, they all seem to flow well together and if I Were A Carpenter I’d be Going For The One, Punk is Dead.... here’s a download link, long live everything to do with Foot Village...  Of course there’s no point in reviewing singles once the Four Tops have kicked in and so this week’s single reviews have come to an end and everything else can wait until next week and this one is single of the week and Levi Stubbs has a voice to stop everything and just.... never mind this week’s singles, go find some Four Tops, go explore the elegant ranting beauty of Crass, remember that man is spelt big M.A.N and watch out for those headlights behind you.... More singles and sheep farming and whatever the else we might have for you right near here next week (maybe?) 
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1st FEB '10....
SINGLE OF THE WEEK - 1st Feb

SUPER ADVENTURE CLUB – Pick Up Sticks / SAC Attack (Armellodie) – An attention-demanding tuneful three piece get me out of this rat-race trio from Scotland. Twisting and tuning and there they go with a bit of Cardiacing in that big instrumental bit that comes in the middle of an almost twee attack of being hung up on things they need to give up and fighting like marsupials and eat your beans, brush your teeth, feed the cat, avoid zombies. We’re under attack like a dog named Sparky and lock the door, feed the cat, cancel plans, avoid zombies. They get all jazzy, ninja-jazz they say, and she has one of  those sweet no-it-wasn’t-me-I-would-never-do-that type of voices, a voice that compliments his reason so much, two fine voices bit like those Bobby McGees actually.  Ghoulish tune-wielding so they say and bad luck comes in threes, but not here, good luck comes your way here and stranger things have happened than this and attempting deconstructive thinking and this is a brilliant debut single and the more you dance around in it the more you tend to notice it. They don’t really sound like anyone, but they do sound like lots of things we like and there’s lots of sticks to pick up and every time I play it it makes me smile a little more, eat you teeth, wash your hands, avoid zombie, what a brilliant debut single, especially the second of two very fine clever songs and read the news, put on your shoes, prepare for a riot – www.myspace.com/superadventuremusic

ALSO CHECK OUT

HUMMUNE – Three Song EP (M.R.S) – Aggressive imagination and some colourfully abrasive hardcore, post-hardcore, crossover metalcore, call in what you will, who needs names and labels? (those were just vague signposts).  We’re talking Helmet, Converge, Unsane flavoured hardcore awkwardness, a touch of Killing Joke (the early days of Pulkas for those who’s minds are still able to reach back there), Hummune are an impressively raw aggressive band from the South of England, they’re already hinting at something a little extra here, something that says they’re a cut above your average English metal band. Three jagged tracks, and for once a relatively new band from the heavier side of musical life who are not content to just sound like their record collection, a band clearly ready to challenge themselves and their audience. Three strong grinding biting hardcore metal tracks with a mean do-not-mess abrasive churning nasty stomp to them. And lucky you, for it seems you can download them free of charge, with the band’s blessing, more details from www.myspace.com/hummune

TEETH OF THE SEA – Hypnoticon EP (Rocket) – Lead track of three here is a very space-rock fuelled cover of Queen’s In The Space Capsule, from the Flash Gordon sound track. Seems they covered the whole album live, in costume, playing in front of the film, seems this version went down so well it has stayed in the live set as opening track ever since. Laser-cut synth lines, space rock drumming, pn-point flights.... Elsewhere on this impressive EP the UK band are a very synth driven Hawkwind and space ships taking off in the mists of time, keyboard-driven psychedelic euphoric goodness and we took the right step years ago.... Deep space advnture, panoramic ambience and forward motion, white-light propulsion and far away in outer space a lighthouse shining star, there to guide you human race and... Until they get to the point of blast off and go all space rock heavy metal and galloping synthified Iron Maiden on us while they hyperthrust. Rather recommended – www.myspace.com/thewrongjaws or www.rocketrecordings.com

COLD WAR KIDS – Behave Your Self EP (V2) – Five songs recorded after the Loyalty to Loyalty album and now. ‘Now’ being the start of work on the Californian band’s third album. And you know what, these five songs might just be the best things they’ve ever done. No might be about it, there’s a new found easy flowing soul here and a band relaxing and being far less obvious about the way they do things, a band demanding you go back and take a fresh look... Wonder if this soulful approach is going to stretch in to that next album? Really hope so, almost gospel at times, classic sparse 60’s soul sound, that real feel that just wasn’t there before.... 
      Out in the UK on Feb 8th (Came out in the U.S last December so it seems) 

WHAT WOULD JESUS DRIVE? - Transylvania Time (Guerrilla) - Whoooo, they’ve changed their sound and style, unless, as I suspect, this is a completely different band to the What Would Jesus Drive who’ve been kicking around the South of England in recent years. This is all swizzing lo-fi atari punk rock synth energy and shouty sugary female vocals and cheap sounding slightly 60’s garage spiky punky bubblegum rock and things all gone wrong on Transylvania time and kooky horror movie Adams Family synth lines and trying to be good and always ending up bad and now the sun don’t shine... Nah, can’t be the same band...  Not bad really, sounds like a trip to Planet Alice, not the most original thing you’re going to hear. Not bad in a throwaway pop kind of way, kind of like it... www.myspace.com/whatwouldjesusdrive

ISOLATED ATOMS – Tell Me What I Want (PPS/Weekender) -  We’ve been hearing how this “hotly-tipped quartet” are “the next big thing” for the last year or so now. We get lots of press releases proclaiming the ‘hotly-tipped next big  thing”, claims like that always raise the bar of expectation, bands very rarely live up to that kind of unreasonable pressure. The bluster around this young West Midlands band really isn’t doing them any favours, they are not the new Joy Division, they are not the next coming, they are not the next New Order - even if someone has bankrolled Peter Hook on to the production team for the next single.  Hey, didn’t they say that last time? Is this the last single re-issued yet again? Out once more with new artwork, new PR team, second shot? Can’t really tell? Yes it is, got six or seven copies of it now! Had to double check they had two songs here and that the second track wasn’t a reworking of the first? The two songs sound so alike... And this hype is all so unfair, because what we actually have here is a half decent relative new band with a slick clean-cut well voiced sound and a not bad early single. Fine voice, decent tune, little bit of a one trick pony so far, not a bad trick though, they might have a chance is everyone gives them some space and stops with all this hype, stops with all this hotly-tipped next big thing nonsense and just lets them evolve in their own time and space.  Right now Isolated Atoms sound very much like The Bravery, they sound rather like Franz, they sound like quite a few Joy Division influenced indie rock things we’ve heard in recent years, they have that ‘heroic’, slightly epic, almost widescreen, synth flavoured sound that we’ve already heard a number of times since Franz broke big. Yes, a sound that does relate to New Order/Joy Division in some kind of safe sanitised way, no danger here, nothing anywhere near being on the edge like Joy Divsion were -  Isolated Atoms are not the new anything, the don’t need all this hype and these trumpet blowing next big thing press releases holding them back, What Isolated Atoms are is a half decent slick indie rock band with an enjoyably pleasant sound, a sound that, given some time and space, might just evolve and become something a little more than yet another slick Bravery Franz type band. Good luck to them, rather like it actually, not a bad little single from a half decent new band – www.myspace.com/isolatedatoms
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