It’s been a long, hard January, right? Traditionally a gig free month, it feels like forever since my last soiree of 2018 with Tyla’s Dogs D’amour at The Fulford Arms back in December. It may be snowy and cold outside, but The Spangles are here to warm the cockles with their hometown album release show.

It’s not all gone to plan though. Caught up in the recent PledgeMusic debacle, The Spangles (as with many other artists) have had to shell out from their own pockets to fulfil pledges and get CDs made. Then the original venue for this gig fell through and just days before, main support Rich Ragany & the Digressions pulled out.

But all’s now good, a new venue was found, support also arranged and fans have the products they pledged for.

Located on the outskirts of Harrogate, The Empress might seem an unlikely venue for a rock ‘n’ roll album release show. But to be honest, it’s perfect. The upstairs function room is homely, there are carpets, pictures on the wall and I wouldn’t be surprised to see a dog sleeping by the fire if there weren’t so many punters in the way. You see, this room is about twice the size of my living room and it’s already packed as Damp take to the stage.

Damp are a local four-piece band residing in the heavier end of the rock ‘n’ roll spectrum. To my ears, a heady mix of Kyuss and Mudhoney. Grungy, stoner rock goodness flows from the speakers as aptly named frontman Wolfgang wrings unworldly noted from his guitar and growls his way through 30 minutes of lo-fi stoner rock goodness. Ably backed by Modern Day Dukes man Rory on bass, George on guitars and Rob on drums, they sure have the tunes ladies and gentlemen. Great gang vocal choruses and face-melting riffage, what’s not to like here? “No one wants a damp t-shirt, but we have dry ones for sale!” announces the singer, prior to introducing the last number. Well said, that man.

 

Another new name is local funky monks PIPS. A late addition to the bill, replacing Rich Ragany & the Digressions. As guitarist Tom tells us after the opening song, PIPS have drunk 7 pints already; things might get interesting from here on in.

With funky, slap bass and metallic riffage, the trio proceeds to bounce through a magnificent high energy set of songs that come on like Infectious Grooves jamming out with Primus. My brother would’ve loved this band, he would’ve wanted to join this band… hell, I want the drummer to join my band and I don’t even have one!

The likes of ‘Soul Katt’ and ’20 Years’ are delivered with the energy and precision of a seasoned live act. They handle the intricate passages with ease and you would never have guessed they were full of lager, they’ve done this before methinks! The combination of Tom’s Vernon Reid style guitar chops, the funky slap bass work of singer Chris and the imaginative and relentless pounding beats of Josh make PIPS a mesmerising band to watch, and certainly a band I will go out of my way to see again. I love it when bands excite and ignite on the night!

No disrespect to the opening bands, but The Spangles are in a different league entirely. As far as I’m concerned they have released the album of the year with ‘#Sweet FA’, and although there are imminent releases from The Wildhearts and Michael Monroe to come soon, The Spangles sure are contenders.

Was there ever any doubt that they could pull it off live? Nah, of course not. If you’ve ever seen The Main Grains or The Idol Dead do their thing, then you know what these guys are capable of, and with an arsenal of great songs under their leather belts, it’s a given that it will be an entertaining set at least.

From the opening chords of ‘Growing Up’, it’s raw, tight and exciting. Ever smiling guitarist Ben Marsden takes lead vocals for the majority of the set and does a mighty fine job. The Idol Dead singer Polly Phluid looks comfortable with a bass strapped on, the pair even has matching black Hagstrom guitars and a shirt & waistcoat combo going on. Behind them, drummer Ginna keeps the beat and delivers great backing vocals as always.

‘Get Over Yourself’ follows, the first of many infectious shout-along choruses that make this Spangles show seem like a greatest hits set. Honestly, there is not one average song tonight, let alone a bad one.

As the energy levels rise, so do the heat levels, as the drunken packed room get rowdy, so do the band. I didn’t pay attention to the song order they played, as I was having too much fun watching and singing along. Suffice to say they pretty much played the whole album, plus a few choice covers including The Sonics ‘Have Love Will Travel’, which was up there with Crazyhead’s version.

Singer Eloise Kerry joins them for a few tracks including awesome bubblegum -infused renditions of ‘One Good Reason’ and ‘Hold My Hand’. All their songs sound ace live, and the crowd already know the words. From the bubblegum pop of ‘The Only One’ to the heavier chanting choruses of ‘Back On The Meds’ and killer Ramones tribute ‘Ramone’, these are songs designed to make you smile and make you sing, job done.

Comedy banter between band and audience flows nicely; all three have always had a good rapport with their fans. The chants of “Rory! Rory!” are swiftly put to bed by a smiling Ben, as he jokes about going home tonight with the Damp bass player, who also happens to be his former bandmate. Ginna and Ben even manage to slag each other off mid-song, during Green Day’s ‘FOD’, in the middle of singing and playing.

As we reach the climax of the show, a visibly emotional Ben can barely sing the chorus of the magnificent single-to-be ‘I Don’t Wanna Go’, a concerned Ginna watches his every move and has his back, covering the chorus when he can.

 

Hot and sweaty, exciting and euphoric, The Spangles delivered maximum rock ‘n’ roll tonight, in a pub in Harrogate, and I’ll wager no music venue has been that packed in Harrogate for a long time. This time last year they weren’t even a band, this time next year, who knows where they will be. Three eclectic local bands for 6 quid, who said rock ‘n’ roll is dead?

 

Author: Ben Hughes

Photographs: Neil Vary 

February 14, 2019 (Baltimore, MD) – American Jetset release their first music video and want everybody to “Go it Alone” this Valentines Day.
The sights, sounds, and mood of the footage expose the band’s DIY philosophy and in the words of singer, Ian Kaine MacGregor, “It’s not pretty, it’s rock and roll with all the bumps and bruises that come with it.” Armed with a volunteer crew, the band shot and edited the entire video on a pair of iPhones, using their hometown as a backdrop to this sleaze influenced track.
“Go it Alone” appears on American Jetset’s Live Love Die on Main EP, released at the tail end of 2018. Since then, the song has been an independent rock radio success and is currently playing on 90+ FM stations in over 20 countries worldwide. On top of that, the attention garnered by the single led to high profile tour dates with Faster Pussycat, Bang Tango, Every Mother’s Nightmare, Kickin Valentina, and Babylon Shakes.
The video for “Go it Alone” is 100% American Jetset – gritty, grimy, and steeped in their “no label, no thanks” attitude. Download the single and the rest of their EP free at Bandcamp and add it to your Apple Music and Spotify playlists today.

So the brand new Lemonheads album is another covers affair but this time they’ve gone bananas, no literally they have.  It’s pressed on Banana yellow scratch and sniff vinyl.  I’ve still got my Damned Strawberries scratch and sniff but it no longer smells of Strawberries though. Anyway, The Lemonheads and Mr Dando what have they got for us?

Thirteen tracks that entered the head of Dando and from his influences it was always going to be an eclectic wide-ranging affair with all aspects of their back catalogue ranging from the country honk of Parsons to the fury of Minor Threat and just about everything in between I guess the only thing to expect is the unexpected.

So clear your mind sit back relax and float downstream as they say. Yo La Tengo are up first and Lemonheads take on ‘Can’t Forget’ then I realise its been almost a decade since the last album of covers and flitting from GG Allin to Gram Parsons you won’t find a more diverse set of tunes yet Dando managed to own the lot of them and on this Varshons he’s managed exactly the same.  Why do covers and not write yourself? Who knows only Evan Dando can answer that one but its once again an inspired collection

I love the quote that Lemonheads’ mainman Evan Dando has this strange ability – he could sing his order for a takeaway over the phone and make it into an achy three-minute epic fit for any bar. Indeed, many moons ago when Bush was dallying with the big red button over a Middle East catastrophe, he delivered an impromptu ‘Eve Of Destruction’ losing his sunglasses due to added angst. is a spot on assessment.

Jayhawks, Westerberg, Nick Cave and The Eagles all make it onto this album and they all fit right into that Evan Dando Lemonheads pocket once again. There’s maudlin beauty in the likes of ‘Settled Down Like Rain’ from The Jayhawks and he’s clearly heavily influenced by the likes of Lucinda Williams and Paul Westerberg.

Dando always liked telling stories and his lyrics like ‘Shame About Ray’ helped carve and style his career so heading out into a Nick Cave tune is something that sits really well and you can tell who wrote it but like previously mentioned Dando takes ownership as well not an easy task.

‘TAQN’ sounds like a hoot as they turn the amps up whilst ‘Unfamiliar’ – a tune Dando penned with former Smudge man Tom Morgan, a kind of skank like Keith Richards number that might have been written whilst under the influence of some substances with its Reggae undercurrent.

They (The Lemonheads) never shied away from covering other peoples songs seeing as in the early days ‘Luka’ helped get airplay in the UK for sure whilst ‘Mrs Robinson’ was a big deal and his version of ‘Hey Thats No Way To Say Goodbye’ was only surpassed by Michael Monroe when he did it. On ‘Varshons 2’ they take the covers idea and really go to town on the concept. Dando crooning on Nick Cave and The Bad Seeds ‘Straight To You’ is fitting even if it’s not the most obvious or indeed popular Cave song he could have borrowed but it works and I like it. Calling time on this album Dando takes a run at the Eagles ‘Take It Easy’ and I’m sat here with a mental picture of a contented Evan Dando taking his cans off saying its a wrap and grinning out the door having just delivered a full stop that was easy peazy playing a bunch of tunes you love and live and getting to take em home with you and shove em on your very own Lemonheads mixtape Evan Dando style – I like it always have liked his work and with records like this there’s no reason to stop just yet.  great work and a lot of fun!

Buy Varshons 2 Here

Author: Dom Daley

The Gun Club will get a full-length documentary in 2020. It’ll focus on lead singer and main songwriter Jeffrey Lee Pierce it’s been revealed that it will carry the title ‘Elvis From Hell’ which was the title of a double compilation record released by Bang a couple of years ago. Pierce passed away at the young age of thirty-seven over twenty years ago.

The band was Formed in Los Angeles in 1979, the Gun Club’s style of mixing punk, blues and rootsy country have made them one of the most influential bands of the last 50 years. Influencing the likes of R.E.M., Sonic Youth and a whole host of other bands that went on to have huge success. Jack White even went as far as to say that Pierce’s songs “should be taught in school.”

The Gun Club managed over the course of their career to release seven studio albums, including ‘Fire Of Love’ and ‘Miami’, being two of the most popular best sellers. Blondie singer Debbie Harry contributing background vocals under the name D.H. Lawrence.

Directed by Heiko Lange and Jessica Andree, ‘Elvis From Hell’ will feature interviews from fans and performers such as Nick Cave, Jim Jarmusch, Mark Lanegan, Iggy Pop, Moby and Kid Congo Powers. It will also include never before seen footage of the band.

This is not the first time Pierce has been the subject of a film. Kurt Voss’ “Ghost On The Highway: A Portrait Of Jeffrey Lee Pierce And The Gun Club” was released in 2006, while 2008 saw the release of ‘Hard times Killing Floor Blues’, which chronicled Pierce’s life while he lived in London. Further details will be brought as and when released

Buy Gun Club Here

It seems like an eternity since the news was released that Bob Mould was releasing a follow up to the fantastic ‘Patch The Sky’ but the day is upon us and on this day ‘Sunshine Rock’ is breaking out over the skyline.

The album opens with the title track and a sprightly jump around it is too. There’s a rough edge and a fire inside his belly that still burns and fans will be delighted that everything is in order and ‘Sunshine Rock’ gets off to a fizzing start like a pop song with loud guitars. We head off in an upward trajectory from there on in as the guitars are turned up loud and when I say loud anyone whos seen the guy live can testify he doesn’t scrimp on the volume and he’s transferred that onto this record. ‘What Do You Want Me To Do’ is loud and it sounds like the record of a guy with hunger and love for what he’s doing its exhilarating stuff.

Splitting Mould albums into light and dark categories can get in the way, sure sometimes it’s inevitable but for me, this one most definitely goes into the big bright happy category.  I don’t think its a coincidence it has the title it does.  Clear your mind and let Sunshine into your life.  Blimey, it works. I must say I’m really enjoying this record on initial plays and I’m sure the deeper I get into it and over time my views might well change but initially this might just be one of his finest offerings to date (solo wise) ‘Sunny Love Song’ is vibrant and skips along LOUDLY!  I find the coloured vinyl quite hypnotic as well looking at it whilst spinning and letting the music try and sink in ‘Thirteen Dozen Roses’ has a sharp riff that dominates the song as Mould slashes at his Strat and beats the chords out.

‘The Final Years’ is a real shift in gears as a keyboard dominates the intro but as the verse begins it drops back to the rhythm section and sparse keyboards as the band locks in for a real slab of new wave This could easily be some 80’s brit pop. Bob turns the amps back on and lets the warm valve heat up as ‘Irrational Poison sounds like a band just playing live and capturing some real live in the studio magic.

If your looking for possible radio singles ‘I Fought’ wouldn’t be one of them as Mould spits out the lyrics laden with expletives like he really means it maaan. ‘Sin King’ sounds like cruising down the freeway in a classic car with the sun blazing down and the radio on full volume its got a real road trip feel to it hidden in the depths of ‘Sunshine Rock’ a song that will give more and more over time I’m sure of it.

‘Lost Faith’ is a more laid back mellow affair at first few plays it had some REM in its melody with strings in the background and well in the background to be fair. the track builds up to a bridge that just soars before falling back to and repeat its like song climbing with Bob Mould it ebbs and flows wonderfully  and like he might be in the next room writing these and your the first person and maybe the only person he’s singing to its got that personal feel to it which is a magical thing to capture. mould stays ahead of the game on ‘Sunshine Rock’ and is as relevant as he’s ever been which is some mean feat considering how quickly the musical sands of time shift and many a musician and songwriter lose their footing and stumble and fall, Mould remains at the top of that dune. He can change gear from song to song whilst ‘Lost Faith’ is calm ‘Irrational Poison’ and ‘Sin King’ are heavy but in a good way and the campfire stum of ‘Camp Sunshine’ is as easy listening as you’re going to get. As a final hoorah you have the frantic one-two of ‘Send Me A postcard’ (made for throwing your ageing body around at some sweaty live show sometime soon.) Mould bows out of ‘Sunshine rock’ with the splendid ‘Western Sunset’ and already the world is a better place as a Bob Mould record gets released into the ever-maddening and confusing world there are few things to rely on and this guys records are one of them. ‘Sunshine Rock’  is a must own record it’s as simple as that what an awesome way to end your week than playing this over and over and over again.  Buy It!

 

Buy Sunshine Rock Here

Basel reprobates Bitch Queens release a new video for ‘R Rated’ taken from the album ‘L.O.V.E.’ Filmed whilst on their USA tour last year its taken from their awesome long player. the boys from Basel don’t just play dumb punk or glam rock n roll they put those elements into a pot along with a whole heap of other influences and tip them upside down and turn them into something quite beautiful as their albums testify. The video gives a snapshot of what the band are about on stage as they tear the shit out of wherever it is they play.  Watch it love it and check em out!

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Buy ‘L.O.V.E.’ 

 

 

Toronto punk band PKEW PKEW PKEW might be owners of one of the weirdest band names ever but you’ll remember it that’s for sure, besides the music they play is fanfuckintastic!

This new album, ‘Optimal Lifestyles’, hits the shelves on 1st March via Big Scary Monsters (UK) and Dine Alone Records (US/Canada).

Pkew Pkew Pkew also announces a run of UK tour dates for May 2019 supporting hotly-tipped LA punks du jour Spanish Love Songs, so it’s fair to say they mean business and are keeping themselves busy which excites me.

While Pkew Pkew Pkew’s 2016 self-titled debut told tales about the late-20s punk life, ‘Optimal Lifestyles’ reflects on the band’s previous fun-loving, hard-partying behaviour with clarity and precision. Pkew writes songs that are plot-driven stories like The Hold Steady’s Craig Finn, who actually went to Toronto to workshop songs with the band for this record.

The first single ‘I Don’t Matter At All’. sees Warne’s songwriting, pulling inspiration from The Hold Steady, and showing influences of bands like The Strokes and Japandroids. that’s where the band are today Warne sings. “It’s fun to live like an idiot, but it’s probably bad, also. We’re all constantly wondering if we’ve ruined our lives forever or not, being in a band.”

Song-by-song, ‘Optimal Lifestyles’ lays out the sort of living Warne speaks of, but its not shoegazing or apologetic for being self-indulgent or self-destruction. It’s an acceptance of the life in Toronto, rent increases and unfeeling gentrification (much like London or New York I guess, it’s a global thing but who is really wanting it? not these guys that’s for sure and neither do I (so we’re on the same page there then)

This is a record about trying to cope with a city or a world that increasingly doesn’t seem to give a shit about people or history, art or culture just cold hard cash. This is where Pkew Pkew Pkew come in, pissed off and calling out the bullshit.

There’s an air of optimism happening here  A band that you can feel their togetherness its better than getting a real job this travelling around making a noise lark and so it begins.

If this is a new band on you then what are you waiting for – dive in –  get acquainted. There are fifteen songs on this album so they certainly pack em in and with most of them around the two-minute mark you can be sure they never ever overstay their welcome.  They don’t reinvent the wheel that much is true maybe its fair to say they just ride the fucker and on this new record they just go for it – Turning the amps up on the opener ‘Still Hanging Out After All These Years’ (the title is almost as long as the song) it’s a heady mix of alt-rock and American college rock like The Replacements or early Lemonheads. ‘Point Break’ could easily be off one of those early Mats albums and I love the saxophone solo it wasn’t expected and takes the song somewhere different.

A band destined for bigger and better things and one along with say,  Beach Slang deserve a shot and their fifteen minutes of fame as a bare minimum.  In fact, after repeated plays, this might just be my new favourite band and certainly an early front runner for top ten album of 2019.  Once the single ’65 Nickels’ gets in your head its hard to shake it off it’s like A punk rock Gaslight Anthem (if I might be so bold) had they headed through the mats door and not Springsteen door (nothing wrong with the Boss I’m not saying that) but one enjoyed a case of beer and some shots whilst the other went jogging and got fit. (we know that the beer and shots win right? Right! well thats pkewx3)

‘Skate 2’ comes out swinging whilst ‘Passed Out’ is more reflective and as you head into the home straight who doesn’t want to see a wolf? or end up at an ‘Adult Party’? you’ll be punching the air when the gang start chanting “Rich Kids Go fuck Yourselves” amen to that brothers, Amen.

C’mon enough words just click the link and thank me later ‘Optimal Lifestyles’ should be in your collection you know what to do next and get excited for the wait will be over soon-

Buy ‘Optimal Lifestyles’ Here

May 2019 UK Tour Dates w/ Spanish Love Songs:

07.05.19 – Brighton – The Hope & Ruin
08.05.19 – Manchester – Soup Kitchen
09.05.19 – Birmingham – The Flapper
10.05.19 – Bristol – The Exchange
11.05.19 – London – New Cross Inn

Stoked to announce The Bronx ‘Dead Tracks’, Volumes 1 & 2 — a double vinyl release featuring all b-sides and rarities and limited to only 750 made. Bundles come with long sleeve t-shirt, vinyl record holder, tote bag, slipmat and patch. Available now at shop.thebronxxx.com 

Remember kids you snooze you loose on these.  Only 750 available then they’re gone!

 

The Bronx – "Dead Tracks" Bundle

Stoked to announce The Bronx 'Dead Tracks', Volumes 1 & 2 — a double vinyl release featuring all b-sides and rarities and limited to only 750 made. Bundles come with long sleeve t-shirt, vinyl record holder, tote bag, slipmat and patch. Available now at shop.thebronxxx.com

Geplaatst door The Bronx op Maandag 4 februari 2019

This Rebellion Festival news announcement gave RPM HQ heart aflutter as the already strong line up just got a little stronger with the inclusion of Walter Lure putting together a pretty decent line up for Something very special for the OPERA HOUSE. Like we weren’t going to be all over this one. 

Walter Lure’s LAMF featuring
Mick Rossi of Slaughter & the Dogs with
Mark Laff of Gen X
Nigel Mead of The Duellists
They will be playing tracks from The Heartbreakers iconic L.A.M.F. album on Saturday night in the Opera House.
TICKETS: www.rebellionfestivals.com/shop

Camden Rocks Festival 2019
1st & 2nd June
The next wave of artists for Camden Rocks Festival 2019 is here! The multi-talented punk and folk singer-songwriter Frank Turner is joined by hitmakers The Wonder Stuff, Random Hand, Discharge, Richie Ramone, The Professionals, Eliza And The Bear, Sonic Boom Six, Area 11, Spunge, Shvpes and ninety other phenomenal bands across indie, rock, punk and metal announced.

They join the first wave of acts that includes Ash, Ratboy, New Model Army, Wheatus, Carl Barat, Ginger Wildheart, Milkteeth, Pretty Vicious, Raging Speedhorn, Angelic Upstarts, The Virginmarys, The Last Internationale, Bang Bang Romeo, Rews and many more.

This year Camden Rocks Festival is a two day event for the first time! Bringing you 400 artists across twenty grassroot venues in Camden Town.

Get out your microscopes and open up a spreadsheet to map out your days.  If you were to ask us here obviously the star attractions of The Wonderstuff and Ash will have their fans but watching The Hip Priests, The Spangles or Rich Ragany & The Digressions is where the gold dust is.  We’ll be doing our bit on the run-up to the event when we know venues and band times and let you know where we’ll be heading.

Tickets