C’mon folks cheer up its only week 752 of Lockdown but worry not here are a few bangers for you to enjoy. First up is the awesome Wyldlife with their brand new video for ‘Kiss And Tell’ taken from the wicked Cool Records Album ‘Year Of The Snake‘ enjoy!
Next is the awesome Duncan Reid & The Big Heads with the lockdown video for ‘To Live Or Live Not’ taken from their most excellent ‘Don’t Blame Yourself‘ Album
Finally bringing up the rear is the awesome Death By Unga Bunga with their first new track ‘Not Like The Others’.
Well, these are strange times and Rock and Roll won’t be clamped down even if we are. Thanks to the magic of this here interweb we can still get our mitts on new music (gloved up of course) first up on this playlist is a right banger from Noo Yawk Citys Wyldlife . It’s recently been reviewed on RPM and I happen to agree with Ben when he claimed it could be a contender for record of the year. We have added ‘Sacre Bleu’ to our banging playlist.
Next up is a band from Sweden called Dictator Ship and Fraser covered this one and ‘Your Favourite’ is a great slice of scandiRock with ‘Eat The Poor’ making the cut in our Playlist.
Australia is quickly becoming the epicentre of Global Garage Rock and you sure can add The Chats to that list of fine Australian bands and with their recent record ‘High Risk Behaviour’ hitting the shelves we’ve included ‘ The Kids Need Guns’ to our playlist with its classic DC early days rawness and their snotty lyrics The Chats rightly are causing a stir around this globe all of their own.
It’s not all snotty records this month we did have some offerings from the Classic Rock and Grunge crossover of Buffalo Summer so included the excellent ‘Hit The Ground Running’ taken off their recently released album ‘Desolation Blue’ with some fine cool slide on the otherwise beefy riffs it’s a real tour de force from Soth Wales on this new album.
It might have been a lifetime ago that The Psychedelic Furs last released a new album but the wait is over and Made Of Rain is almost upon us. We’ve included the first single taken from the record ‘You’ll Be Mine’.
Naked Six have a new album out and the lead track off that album is ’21st Century Brawl’ and that makes our playlist with its jarring poke before the album kicks off with some great tunes. Well worth investigating so let this opener suck you in but don’t forget to buckle up.
Ben found his stereo working overtime as The City Kids released ‘Things That Never Were’ so we’ve added ‘You Get Nothing’ To our playlist.
I know a girl, a girl called Party, Party Girl. Bono sang that but the Dahlmanns sing ‘Party Girl’ which was released as part of a split with Tommy & The Rockets on Beluga Records a classic castanets clacking slice of power pop with saxophone and New Wave approved piano.
Then Comes Silence who we include ‘Devils’ from their most excellent ‘Machines’ album that was recently reviewed with some dark Goth undertones this has been on heavy rotation around some RPM circles as the corpse paint went on and certain writers were only venturing out after dark with this on their playlists. Get on it kids.
If a bit of Goth isn’t your thang then why not grow out those sidies and some facial hair and get on down with Rookie. We’ve got ourselves a ‘One Way Ticket’ to listen to this great playlist and ride out this Global pandemic.
As well as some awesome reviews April sees us bring some news that bands push out so why not include some of the movers and shakers who are busy this month either re arranging tours or putting the final touches on new releases. How about some Rock with American Jetset? ‘Gold & Nines’ is classic cock rock n roll so it makes the cut. Our old friend Jizzy Pearl also announced that he has signed a new deal with Golden Robot Records so expect some new music and live shows soon. We head back to when he did the album ‘Just A Boy’ and include the cracker ‘Do You Wanna Get High’.
With everybody with a guitar and camera phone shooting home shows we have a few suggestions of who you could check out starting with Rich Ragany & The Digressions who bring ‘Later Than It Is’ to our playlist off the excellent debut album and rumour has it that recording has begun for the follow up which commenced before this lockdown but be sure we’ll bring you the news as and when.
Another artist smashing the numbers watching his home broadcast is Mike Peters with his ‘Big Night In’ I’ve not tuned in yet but rest assured I will. Heres one from his recent output ’13 Dead Raindeers’. Another live streamer is Jesse Malin who we also interviewed recently and who has a brand new single out sadly it’s not on this service yet so make do with a cut off his last album ‘Chemical Heart’.
There’s fifteen reasons to stay in and have RPM Playlist be your companion and while away the hours playing some quality rock and roll . Go on a journey of discovery and see where it takes you as you avoid the rocks on the choppy water of Rock and Roll 2020.
‘The Time Has Come To Rock & Roll’, so proclaimed New York punk ‘n’ rollers Wyldlife back in 2013. Now in 2020, they find themselves still rock ‘n’ rolling with their fourth long player. Following hot on the tails of 2016’s ‘Out On Your Block’, ‘Year Of The Snake’ is the band’s second album on the ever cool Wicked Cool Records label. Owned by the legend that is Steven Van Zandt, Wicked Cool Records has brought us quality albums from the likes of Ryan Hamilton, Jesse Malin and Kurt Baker over the past few years.
Recorded at Little Steven’s very own Renegade Studios in NYC, the album title is taken from the Chinese year of the snake; 1989, the year that band mates Dave Feldman (vocals), Sam Allen (guitar), and Spencer Alexander (drums)were born. ‘Year Of The Snake’ is everything you want from a Wyldlife record and more. The spirit of NY punk flows through these boys veins. From the early years, when Ramones and The Dolls were treading the boards of CBGB’S, to the late 90’s when D Generation ruled the underground, they have it all. But its more than just cool shoes and leather jackets, you have to have the rock ‘n’ roll minerals to stand out from the crowd, and Wyldlife prove they have it in spades.
Opener ‘Deathbed’ comes on with the anthemic bravado usually reserved for the likes of Green Day in their prime. Featuring a melody you will swear down you’ve heard before. It grabs you from the off, a musical crockpot of low slung riffage and high energy melodies guaranteed to give goosebumps and raise hopes in equal measures.
Quick as a flash, before you have even had time to pick your jaw up off the floor it’s over, and we’re into first single ‘Neon Nightmare’. This… this is the rock ‘n’ roll sound I need in my life right now. High energy, upbeat and catchy as fuck. Also, it’s the perfect escape from the nightmare that is reality right now.
Two tracks in and its pretty safe to say vocalist Dave Feldman and guitarist Sam Allen have my full attention with their songwriting antics. You could say their themes of paranoia, anxiety and bad relationships are par for the course in 2020, well now Wyldlife add the soundtrack. With the spirit of Hanoi Rocks and the power pop suss of The Replacements, Wyldlife run though 11 tracks of highly essential rock ‘n’ roll.
Highlights are plentiful. ‘Kiss and Tell’ rides on tribal beats and Ramones chords as it builds to yet another catchy chorus that’ll surely incite air guitar and hairbrush vocal action in bedrooms and living rooms the world over. The radio friendly ‘Automatic’ is the albums curve ball, a song that hits right in the feels. Inspired by The Jesus and Mary Chain, it’s a song written by the frontman about a girl he knows who works in a florist shop. With lush, indie pop melodies, female backing vocals and lyrics full of sentiment, its pure power pop goodness coming on like Squeeze meets Fountains Of Wayne and that’s a good place to be.
The fast and furious ‘Sacre Bleu’ is as punk as fuck. Spiky, high energy bursts of noise, think Hives meets Randy and you’ll get close. Sam’s chord bashing matches the frantic drums as Dave spits vocals with the venomous antics of a snake. This and the aforementioned ‘Automatic’ couldn’t be further apart in sound but they are fired from the same Wyldlife gun and both definitely hit the spot.
An overly familiar riff takes the title track into orbit as it builds to a relentless, killer refrain that pummels the senses. Gang vocals and guitars are the order of the day as the likes of ‘Tulsa Superstar’ and ‘Keeping Up With CT’ marry the power pop goodness of The Replacements and The Exploding Hearts with urgent beats, swathes of Hammond and Johnny Thunders licks, very nice indeed.
As I write these words New York is the hardest hit city in the world as far as the Coronavirus goes. No one could’ve predicted this turn of events and no one knows what the future holds for live music or our favourite bands. All we can do is be grateful that albums this good are still coming our way and do our best to help by buying albums, merch to help support the bands we love and the music they create.
2020 will be remembered as the year of the virus, but I also hope it will be remembered by the cool cats as the year Wyldlife gave us ‘The Year Of The Snake’. Essential listening, buy or die punks!
In these strange times you can always rely on the RPM singles club to come up with a full basket of tasty Easter treats from the 7″ department of some of the best independent labels (and some major ones too) We have a slimmed download this month for obvious reasons but a pandemic won’t stop the rock, no sir. Let me introduce some of our picks from recent releases and ones about to come out from New York to Europe and everywhere in between check out these pretty pieces of plastic that came our way…
Watts – ‘Seventeen’ (Rum Bar Records) You want Rock and Roll in these tough times? sure you do what about FREE Rock and Roll? Hell Yeah! Well, hit up the link and download yourself some stonking foot-stomping bullshit-free Rock and Roll courtesy of those dudes Watts and rum Bar Records. It’s got keif Richards riff-a-rama on the guitar and those rasping hard-living vocals wrapped around a shitgrinning rocker get on it already. ‘When The Party Ends’ is a more ‘morning after’ feel but it’s an absolute belter oozing Rock n Roll. Hit the link and grab it now and let the good times enter your life Here Record of the week? Hell Yeah! not because it’s free but because it’s so damn good. Watts and Rum Bar are a match made in heaven and this is as good as it gets, timeless and class.
Sin City – Hold On (self Release) Holed up in Alicante Spain Two Cavemen recorded a couple of bluesy American classics in the shape of ‘Hold On’ and ‘Broken Hearted Man’ obviously being quarantined has seen them open their beat-up soul. Recorded with one mic, an acoustic guitar, an electric piano, a tambourine and whatever else they could find lying around the house. So plug it in, turn it up and let Sin City and their Mojo Machine get to work on ya! hit the link for the Bandcamp page Here Hell they’ve even worked out how to press record on their phone to shoot a video. It’s taken from a download album that’s rather tasty to be fair showing their not just drunken marauding animals who like fast n loose they can chill out and plonk da blues. Check it out Here
The Dollyrots – ‘Make Me Hot’ (Wicked Cool Records) With a cracking chorus The Dollyrots have got themselves a banger of a seven inch single. ‘Make Me Hot’ is a blast of power pop that should be heard across the globe this summer blazing from radios everywhere. flip it over for a rip ride cover of Lisa Loeb ‘Stay (I Miss You)’ in all its unashamed glory pop music rocked up. This will sell out no doubt as the band go from strength to strength with a hugely confident single. Buy Here
Mickey Leigh – ‘It Felt Like Love’ (Wicked Cool Records) If you want a distraction from the global pandemic it seems Wicked Cool has happened upon one antidote for the self-isolation blues and that’s by releasing a bunch of wicked cool singles. Mickey Leigh being one such 45. If your wondering who is he well, let me introduce you to Joey Ramones brother who has a wonderful slice of rock and roll with the A-side that reminds me of Stiv Bators solo era. A wonderful track that has a great hook on the chorus as the song just chugs along effortlessly. Keep digging though because the B Side is a real vibrant cracker ‘Trouble Man’ motors along. His brother would be proud of these tunes and the playing is fitting and really impressive, I like this a lot. Buy Here
Primo! – ‘Machine’ (Anti-Fade & Upset The Rhythm) Jangly Power Pop courtesy of Melbournes Primo! lifted off their album ‘Songi’ which will be released later this month. Check out their hotrod video now
Electric Frankenstein / Scumbag Millionaire (Ghost Highway Records) If ever there were two bands best suited to do a split single then these two would certainly be contenders. USA v Europe yet bonded by a love of loud guitars and some Garage Punk Rock n Roll attitude. EF contribute the riff-a-rama of ‘One Step Away’ with its bruising riff its classic EF then on the flipside you have the brutal and rapid riffs of Scumbag Millionaire ‘Strike Me Down’ its reminiscent of when Hellacopters broke onto the scene with the same vocal style and crash bang wallop of the verses colliding with the chorus and then smash – we’re into the soaring solo. Winner by a country mile!
Twisted Wheel – ‘I Am Immune’ (The Orchard Music (on behalf of Independent) Taken from their brand new album ‘Satisfying The Ritual’ Your left in no doubt that this is a right banger folks. Check it out and pre-order the album Here why don’t you?
Bloodshot Bill – ‘Its The Out Of This World Sounds Of…Vol 2’ (Ghost Highway Records) 1950 rockabilly inspired rock and roll just like The Cramps used to mess with your brain and some. ‘It’s A..Aa,a.Aaaggghhh!’ B Movie rock n roll from Bloodshot Bill its certainly out there from another planet ‘Moon Rocketing’ then ’50 Megaton’ sparse and authentic but totally fucked up and wonderful. Then you have the acoustic ‘Be My Satellite’ sounds like it was recorded on moonshine round an old wireless in the woods. Its got whistling n all so whats not to like. this is what makes the wonderful world of Rock and Roll so entertaining. Facebook
The Dahlmanns / Tommy & The Rockets – ‘Scandinavian Affair’ (Beluga Records/Ghost Highway Records) Yes through times of adversity you can always rely on some people to keep the spirits high. Another great team up in splitsville as One side is the Dahlmanns with the power-pop piano lead of ‘Part Girl’ it’s like an early ray of sunshine on a cloudy day. Music that should be on the radio playlists everywhere but isn’t but don’t let that get you down just let this ray of sunshine into your life. Then you have Tommy & his rockts turning the amps up for another slice of power pop but from another angle. ‘you Don’t Know What You Do’ again like The Dahlmanns they just ooze classy power pop and if you ever had a hankering for something pop but with guitars then Tommy & the gang are for you. Pick it up from Beluga or Ghost Highway before they’re all gone. Buy Here
The Cocktail Slippers – Nighttrain (Wicked Cool Records) Oslo Norway isn’t the place I thought would throw up some cool street power pop not a million miles from Blondie rockin out had you said Queens then I’d have assumed it present and correct. Its got the swagger of the lower east side These ladies have got themselves a catchy glam rockin slice of power pop.Buy the track Here / Facebook
Aborted Tortoise – Scale Model Subsistence Vendor (Goodbye Boozy Records)
Their new EP, ‘Scale Model Subsistence Vendor’, is one that backs this up once again. Arriving via cult-adored Italian punk label Goodbye Boozy Records, the EP brings together another four tunes bursting with energy. Moulding rock with heavy punk It’s sharp and succinct, ‘Making A Mint’ is frantic and will get yer blood pumping then ‘Factory’ is more laid back (really? Laid back?) ok, its not so rapid on the verse and sounds like its hanging on by a thread as the guitars chop away its got Pavement meets the Dead Kennedys running through its blood stream but so much more going on besides. Perth Australia has never sounded so inviting. Flip it over for the frantic ‘Violent Consumer’ before ‘Plastic Orgasm’ takes this EP home with its sharp romp to the finish line. Aborted Tortoise make it sound easy but being this good isn’t easy. Cracking EP from the artwork to the noise in the grooves buy it! . Bandcamp
Wyldlife -‘Automatic’ (Wicked Cool Records) I’ve not had the pleasure yet of hearing the new long player but have had a couple of glimpses through the window so to speak and of course I’ve loved what I’ve heard, why wouldn’t I? I’ve always loved Wyldlife and on hearing the new single ‘Automatic’ I can fanboy swoon once again and tell everybody I know that the album is coming. With the loud guitars and understated melody, it’s exactly what I wanted to hear in these dark times. A band who are nailing it every time and this new Wicked Cool Record is going to blow away the opposition – great tune – simple buy it! Inspired by a mutual love of Jesus And Mary Chain with a friend this is Rock and Roll Year of the snake be damned it’s the year of Wyldlife get on it pop pickers it’ll brighten up your social isolation Facebook
The BD3 – ‘Snowfake’ (Dischordia Records) Bradford ner do wells The BD3s have a double-sided single out and with the understated menace ‘Snowfake’ cruises along with a lovely slice of post-punk edge with a rasping buzzsaw guitar and spoken/chanted vocal jarring away its got some of the Fall happening its the audio equivalent of being poked in the chest and told whats what. Much like Greater Manchesters Cabbage The BD3 have carved out their own niche and they sit comfortably in there or should that be uncomfortable? the other tune on offer is the raging ‘Sypharus’ with a wicked riff and jarring lyrics its post punk for the 21st century and on this introduction, it sounds bloody good. Facebook
SHVPES – Lions Den (Spinefarm) Ahead of a decent UK tour and new record these rockers knock out another interesting video for ‘Lions Den’ Keep up to date Here
Tyla’s Dogs D’Amour – ‘Lightnin’ Bar Blues’ (King Outlaw Records) Tough times currently can be made easier by some sweet tunes and Tyla and his Dogs D’Amour have covered the classic Hanoi Rocks ‘Lightnin’ Bar Blues’ Tyla style.
Its all for a good cause don’t you know. Get on over to the Bandcamp page and drop a virtual quid in the box and own this most wonderful take of a wonderful song. Originally Hanoi put the track on their ‘Oriental Beat’ album but this take on a classic is very different but totally Tyla (if you know what I mean). Pour yourself some ripple wine and turn it up. You know it makes sense now what are you waiting for? Fark Orf if you’d be so kind and click Here
L.A. Guns – ‘Crawl’ (Golden Robot Records) Having recently signed to Golden Robot Records part of the Golden Robot Global Entertainment Group, the legendary L.A. Guns are set to release their new single ‘Crawl’ on April 20th. ‘Crawl’Pre-Order / pre-save: https://smarturl.it/LAGuns-Crawl Not to be confused with the other band called L.A. Guns of course. Not really having a clue where I stand on this name game but as far as songs go this one is alright and sounds like you’d expect L.A. Guns to sound but don’t think its the Phil Lewis vocals because it’s not this one is Kurt Frohlich on vocals. With a very 80s sounding track ‘Crawl’ is turning back the clock for all you cock rockers. Facebook / Instagram / Label link
Johny Skullknuckles – This City (Self Release) Free music? Johny Skullknuckles is giving away a tune? Today just got a lot better. We love free music and we love Johny Skullknuckles and we love ‘This City’ as it drifts in on an acoustic strum and meanders toward the chorus with just a bass drum and occasional snare and acoustic (and a voice or two) Skullknuckles opens his heart about his town and how time moves on and places change and not always for the better. Cheer up Johny you’ve still got yer memories and the ability to write proper rock and roll tunes keep it up and we look forward to your next offering already. Get it Here kids you know it makes sense.
Brassick – ‘They Say’ (TNS Records)Brassick seem to have been around for an age and when they used to turn up and play Slugfest they always turned in a thoroughly convincing and passionate set and when I’ve seen them at Rebellion the same. I did wonder what they would be like on record and don’t quite know how I managed to avoid it thus far and to be fair this is a belter. You get taken on a roller coaster of a journey from the bass rumble that will loosen any fillings to the soaring chorus. To the Buy the track Here ahead of the album release later this month.
OK, so we’re flying into March 2020 already? Hell, this year is roaring for sure so this month Spotify playlist is as follows.
First up we have Sick Bags and the track ‘Boys Bleed Too’ from the awesome NFT/Spaghetty Town Records EP ‘Only Thee Young Die Good’ if you love a blast of Punk Rock with plenty of Roll and a howling attitude then check it out.
Next up we have the magnificent Jeff Dahl and ‘The Violence Squad’ taken from his recent album ‘Electric Junk’. A sparkling track from an equally sparkling album – Worthy of any Spotify playlist.
Green Day slipped a brand new album out there as well recently and it seems to have shaken a few as to their expectations for what a “punk Band” should sound like. Well, ‘Stab You In The Heart’ sees the band rip it up old school and what an excellent job Butch Walker did on the production front. We love it.
Deathtraps make a noise and we love that. With a brand new album out right about now we dig into their back catalogue and bring you the awesome ‘The Death Of Rock And Roll’ taken off their second album ‘Gotta Get Some’ but you can check out the review of the new album here.
With the brand new album scheduled for release in April we got excited that a new long-player from new yorks Wyldlife was on the way so we added the last single ‘Neon Nightmare’ Can’t wait for ‘The Year Of The Snake’ to drop as I think you’ll be hearing a lot more from these boys this year.
Another band I caught up with recently is Empty Suits and their EP that blew me away, We recently welcomed Dave Prince to the team and he delivered a review of the brand new Brian Fallon album ‘Local Honey’ so here’s the mellow tune ‘I Don’t Mind’.
Ben reviewed the new offering from Stone Temple Pilots ‘Perdida‘ so we’ve included the track ‘Miles Away’. Also with a new album coming out soon is Dirtbox Disco so here’s a reminder of what they were all about and with Spunk Volcano now handling the vocals you can find out soon enough but we’ve heard it and you have nothing to worry about.
Having just landed the support on the Status Quo winter tour of the UK Rich Ragany & The Digressions also released a video for the title track so we’ve added it to this months playlist.
Also heading out on tour this month are The Bar Stool Preachers so why not warm up to ‘8.6 Days (All The Broken Hearts)’.
Bang Records are releasing the ‘In Heat’ album by The Fuzztones as it was intended so of course, we’re reviewing that in the coming weeks. It would be rude not to include the title track off that. Continuing along the Garage Rock line Thee Hypnotics are treading the boards again so here’s the classic ‘Shakedown’.
Finally, for March, we’ve got the lead track off the Biff Byford solo album ‘Me And You’. A true legend of hard rock Biff has decided than now was the right time for a solo album. Good luck to him we all have a bit of Biff in our hearts of that there is no doubt. Enjoy our mixed bag kids and we hope you find something you like.
Give us a like or a follow or whatever you do on streaming services and hey buy an album and support the bands they deserve it. Thank you.
Seeing as they have a brand new album out this week and were reviewed last week and we’ve got a special interview exclusive up tomorrow we thought we’d dig into the back catalogue for a showing of ‘Rebecca Receiving’ from their ‘One Hyde Park’ Album ladies and germs The Dowling Poole.
Brighton based three-piece, Dramlove have a brand new video ‘Written In The Stars’ check out the video here Facebook
Finally, A new album set for early 2020 release and presales announced we thought we’d treat you to what we already knew and thats how damn good Wyldlife have always been. This beauty is from wayyyy back – Enjoy!
New York Punk Rockin Power Poppers Wyldlife announce pre-sales for their brand new album ‘Year Of The Snake’ on Wicked Cool Records. Available on yin and yang black/white vinyl. All pre orders get instant two track download. Bandcamp / Facebook
Album pre-orders have launched along with a bold new single titled “Kiss And Tell”.
Of the new single, frontman Dave Feldman says, “After listening to “Definitely Maybe” for more times than we can count, Sam and I wanted to make a song that was tough and angry but still confident and cool. The lyric “I’d rather be ignored than be adored” was a riff on another favorite Manchester band, the Stone Roses. Obviously we as a band want to be celebrated and have an impact on people’s lives, but most times I just want to be left the fuck alone. WYLDLIFE tends to have a larger than life personality, but most people don’t actually know anything about us. I’ve said “good to see you” to more people I don’t know than I’m comfortable with.“
“I feel like WYLDLIFE is kind of the biggest outlier band of our time,” says Dave Feldman, lead singer of the fierce four-piece NYC Rock ’n’ Roll machine that continues its stylishly anachronistic upending of Rock ’n’ Roll expectations with their fourth album and boldest artistic statement yet, Year Of The Snake, out April 17 on Wicked Cool Records.
Stuffed with catchy riffs and choruses, charmingly specific lyrics and a palpable love of ’70s punk, glam and power pop, Year Of The Snake is the long-anticipated follow-up to WYLDLIFE’s Wicked Cool debut, Out On Your Block. That 2017 release, featuring their breakthrough hit “Contraband,” made the upper half of the CMJ and NACC college radio charts and was hailed by Thrasher as “Rock ’n’ Roll that makes your heart beat faster and your fists scream.”
All 11 songs on the retro-fueled new album were co-written by Feldman with guitarist Sam Allen. The two are “the Mick and Keef of the band” as bassist Spencer Alexander puts it. Dave and Sam have been friends since age 11 and have been writing songs together for nearly two decades.
“A lot of times, I’ll have a melody in my head, usually with lyrics, and I’ll just have to sing the thing out to Sam since I can’t play guitar to save my life,” says Dave. “I’ll be frantically trying to explain, ‘It should sound like this Stooges song, but with this Oasis song for the drums and this bass line like The Rezillos or whatever. Sam will transform it into something that’s close to what I meant but even better.”
The childhood friends have been augmented for some time now by Spencer on bass and Stevie Dios on drums. Dave sings their praises: “Stevie is like a self-flagellating workhorse. After every take he’ll be like, ‘I fucked that up, let’s do it again,’ when he’s the only one who heard anything. Spencer is super fucking relaxed pretty much about everything in life. He’s a rocker, but he’s even more of a roller.” An in-demand illustrator and designer, Spencer is also the visual genius behind the album’s striking art direction.
The record and its title track drew naming inspiration from 1989, the year in which Dave, Sam and Spencer all were born, and the third most recent year of the snake according to the Chinese zodiac. “We’ve always been crawling for glory, unwilling to compromise and are considered to be mesmerizing while simultaneously dangerous,” Feldman offers, without a trace of venom.
“There may be listeners who think there’s a bit more negative energy or anger on Year Of The Snake,” says Feldman, “but there’s always been a hard truth to our songs. Topics include paranoia, anxiety, bad relationships with others, bad relationships with self, hustling in every sense of the word…but it’s not all good news! I guess the overarching theme is: ‘It’s 2020. Life is obviously fucked, nothing matters whatsoever, let’s party about it.’”
The album kicks off with “Deathbed,” in which Dave laments about “Joey and Bowie and little old me,” referencing departed heroes Joey Ramone and David Bowie. He explains: “Death seems like the easiest, fastest way to make your mark, like a cheat code to notoriety. There’s always been a fear in my head: ‘Will people remember you? Will they remember WYLDLIFE?’ I hope someday I die with a bit of certainty that the answer is ‘yes.’”
While packed with upbeat rockers in the classic three-minute WYLDLIFE mold, the album does find the band showing off some new tricks. The taut “Automatic,” a song both inspired by The Jesus and Mary Chain and named after one of their albums, features harmony vocals by friend of the band Sasha Cibic, the first woman to guest on a WYLDLIFE song. Barrier-breaking album closer “The Falcon” is an epic five-minute cocaine bender with ominous overtones, complete with tubular bells and perhaps Feldman’s most intense vocal to date.
“The track was recorded in December and it just so happened that there was a set of tubular bells on loan in the studio; we knew we had to use them and to be honest, it’s my favorite part of the track. Upon completion Spencer pointed out that the Falcons happen to be Atlanta’s NFL team. As it stands, this is the only time I feel like I’ve ever been in the absolute right place in the absolute right time: fucked up soaking wet in a parking lot in Atlanta, Georgia.”
The blistering “Neon Nightmare” was the first Snake track to see the light of the day when released as a single in late 2019. It quickly achieved Coolest Song In The World honors on Little Steven’s Underground Garage, heard on SiriusXM and internationally syndicated radio. “Kiss And Tell” is the band’s first single of 2020, with a typically madcap music video on the way. Both “Automatic” and the irreverent French travelogue “Sacré Bleu” are also slated for airplay.
Recorded in late 2019 at Renegade Studios, NYC, home base of Wicked Cool head Stevie Van Zandt, the album was produced by Sam with Geoff Sanoff, the engineer known for his work with Bruce Springsteen, Fountains Of Wayne, Dashboard Confessional and others.
The latest release in Wicked Cool Records’ ongoing partnership with The Orchard as distributor, Year Of The Snake is poised to sustain the label’s momentum on the heels of its 2019 Billboard Heatseekers Top 10 albums by Jesse Malin and The Dollyrots. Both Malin and The Dollyrots are releasing new music via the label in 2020, as are The Empty Hearts, Soraia and more.
Dave Feldman — vocals
Sam Allen — guitar
Spencer Alexander — bass
Stevie Dios — drums
To give a sample of what to expect check out the youtube clip of the single ‘Neon Nightmare’ that’s taken from the album
Canada does it again I don’t know what they’re putting in the water up there but fuck me sideways they’ve got the rock and roll happening all over the country at the moment no doubt about it and Isolation Party join the, Um, Party!
Post punk power pop with melody and enough Buzzcock vibe going on to reel you in Isolation Party are more than that. Songs like the happy go lucky ‘Fine Lines’ remind me of the trashy elements of The Replacements. there isn’t much polish going around but the tunes are really hitting the spot.
They keep up the trashy power pop noise going on ‘Mr Telephone’ as it hurtles along sounding like when Dando recorded ‘Lick’ but with more melody. The songs are short and oh so sweet with plenty of snot mixing it with New Yorkers Wyldlife and Baltimore’s Ravagers Isolation Party are the real deal. The Briefs and The Stitches must have a bearing on Isolation Party’s record collection because they dance to the same beats on tracks like the frantic ‘Pointing fingers’ and how can you not love ‘Sleeves’? for all its trashy drug talk and bittersweet melodies.
Throughout the ten tracks, the band weaves a really enjoyable tapestry of twisted melodies and its very listenable and fairly instant as well. I guess if you have even a mild interest in any of the bands that I’ve referenced then you really should check out Isolation Party because they’ve definitely got the chops and this album is really consistent and most definitely doesn’t fade away and right up to the last chorus of ‘These Things’ I know I’m going to hit repeat and go right back to the beginning and play it all over again. Great album!
With the sun turning Shit Island a lighter shade of brown due to a lack of rainfall on Englands not so Green and pleasant land it was only Rock and Roll that could save us and in marched Hey Honcho & The Aftermaths with their absolute banger ‘Chico Purito!’ In a nutshell it’s everything that is great about wild and reckless garage punk others Might call it Action Rock. Hey Honcho are the newly crowned kings of Spain and boy can they wield those guitars. They make a real pretty noise let me guarantee you that and we love that off the hook shit here at RPM. Click on the links and let some sunshine into your lives and say hello to the boys and tell em RPM sent you. Now July just got a little bit hotter!
On the live front, Leigh took a trip no not like that he went to Birmingham to catch Lenny Kravitz raise vibrations at the NEC and rated Lenny as a guy who still has the chops and on his way back he caught Richie Kotzen rock the Thekla in Bristol for another highlight on the live front.
Other notable releases were those belonging to dragSTER who released a new long player via Louder Than war label entitled ‘Anti Everything’ which saw fi and the boys unleash their most brutal offering yet. they seemed focussed and really up for it on this release and certainly one of July’s better albums.
Twin Flame Radio is perhaps better known as Bam (he of the Dogs D’Amour and Wildhearts) and Share Ross (Vixen) released their debut album and what a little bobby dazzler this one was and took us by surprise especially Bams voice which wouldn’t look out of place alongside a youthful Ian Hunter or perhaps Robin Zander as Bam belted out a bevy of beauties taking half the vocal duties a real 70’s glam rock vibe happening here.
There was one massive release as far as a lot of the team RPM were banking on that was released (just in time for Rebellion) for Bar Stool Preachers and that was the follow up to ‘Blatant Propaganda’ debut the much anticipated follow up ‘Grazie Governo‘. Not that there was any doubt but it lived up to all expectations and Nev Brooks commented that it was the high point of the year let alone Month which is some accolade. To be fair Nev had this to say about BSP,”So where do I start, how about next year the Bar Stool Preachers exploding to the next level, playing to ever-growing crowds these guys are the real deal and destined for ever bigger things, they have the potential to worm their way into every household” (in the nicest possible way that is)
July being a pretty lean month compared to some others – this album really impressed with the quality and passion put into the songs it’s there for all to hear.
Other impressive releases go to the Italian punk rock n rollers Idol Lips who put out ‘Street Value’ on the ever impressive Wanda Records label. There was however an impressive bag of singles that landed on the RPM turntable notably More Kicks with their impressive power pop melodies and seven-inch debut ‘Its A Drag’ and of course it wouldn’t be right if we didn’t mention The Hip Priests and their split with Scandinavians Scumbag Millionaire. There was also noticeable singles from across the pond by some of our favourites in Wyldlife who put out ‘C’mon Christine’ and their pals in Ravagers who released the awesome ‘Drowning In Blood’. To be fair that’s not a bad month, is it?
Sadly July also said goodbye to Alan Longmuir who was the bass player in the Bay City Rollers Alan died after a short illness but his legacy lives on as girls and boys of a certain age won’t ever forget the tartan and the awesome haircuts. Rest In Peace Alan.