Gerald Stansbury

Wow… I mean… just wow. This album is a wonderful and tremendous addition to a Dogs D’amour discography that began with ‘The State We’re In’ 35 years ago. There will be those that may refuse to give this a chance, and that is really unfortunate for them. I would consider this the first proper album under the Dogs D’amour name by Tyla, Gary, Matty, and Simon even though they have been recording together for several years now. This album is truly made to feel like a Dogs D’amour album as opposed to a Tyla solo album or the Tyla J Pallas Band. It is not a secret that the last two new studio albums ‘When Bastards Go to Hell’ and ‘Let Sleeping Dogs’ were not everyone’s cup of tea, a bottle of jack…. or maybe I should now say bottle of red. Those albums really reflect a different moment in time where this feels much more like the follow up to ‘Happy Ever After’ in terms of style, sound, and approach. For me, this love affair started back at ‘In the Dynamite Jet Saloon’ which remains my favorite album of all time. The band was refreshing among the wave of hair metal bands that often blended together thanks to the other influences they incorporated such as the Stones, Faces, Hanoi Rocks, etc. Tyla’s lyrics were much more relatable to people like me who would try our best only to find out that sometimes the bad guys win despite our best efforts. Albums such as ‘Errol Flynn’ and ‘More Unchartered Heights of Disgrace’ are part of my DNA at this point. Over the years, Tyla has released a tremendous number of solo albums and projects as well as a couple of albums with Spike from the Quireboys. There has always been a difference between that work and Dogs D’amour albums which is partially where the lines got blurred in my mind on ‘Let Sleeping Dogs’ and ‘When Bastards Go to Hell.’ What we have here though is an album that has its very own identity but captures a true band effort and sounds like a Dogs D’amour album…. A damn awesome one too.

Getting the album started is a stomping version of ‘111,’ which will be familiar from Tyla’s solo work. This version though packs more venom and punch. This is a great opener along the lines of ‘Drunk Like Me’ and ‘What’s Happening Here.’ The guitars burn sharply in the mix with the outside production evident at the outset. The album transitions to the gorgeous ‘Black Confetti.’ The use of the saxophones here is perfectly placed, and the way they arrive after a brief pause at the beginning of the song is sublime. This is not your typical single by any Dogs D’amour incarnation and all the better for it. This is an opportunity for these Dogs to flex some musical chops and create a magical moment. For those of us that pledged, we got to hear just a bit of the up-tempo ‘Bloodline’ that rocks in a similar manner to ‘What You Do’ and ‘Lie in This Land.’ The bass by Matty has some added pop in the mix which really stands out at the beginning of the song. Tyla sounds sensational here. He would never win on any of those reality singing shows, but his vocals have always been more about character, heart, soul, and distilled from the finest blend of rock n roll spirits. I will take that everytime. I really love the guitar solo here by Gary as well.

‘Bottle of Red’ stands out as a future standard in the live show where everyone is singing along at the top of their lungs. Lyrically, I would say that it is like the uplifting cousin of ‘Satellite Kid’ as the music creates much more of a ‘Singin’ vibe from ‘Happy Ever After.’ The band adds some awesome saxophone here which creates some additional depth in the music. A Tyla spoken word ad-lib at the end is another very nice touch. I should mention again here that the mix and production on this album is excellent and truly showcases how great these songs are. Since I am reviewing the vinyl version, the midtempo ‘Everything to Me’ represents the end of Side One. Matty’s bass lines get a chance to stand out here as well as the tasteful guitar lines by Gary and Tyla. With a strong vocal hook carried by Tyla already in the chorus, the band adds some background ‘ooh Sha la la’s’ for good measure. What really stands out is just how happy Tyla sounds as these two songs feel like celebrations. Something I have not mentioned is that this album steers clear of the traditional ballads and acoustic numbers. This is a rock album through and through.

Flipping the record over, the uniquely titled ‘Chicago Typewriter’ begins with gunshots and sirens. Musically, this is a hard blues number driven incredibly well by Simon (drums) and Matty (bass) so that Gary and Tyla can add some great bluesy riffs to the mix which are complemented by a simple and highly addictive vocal hook. In some ways, this song recalls the best of where Tyla had gone on ‘Let Sleeping Dogs’ or ‘When Bastards Go to Hell’ but with a much more listener-friendly production style and mix. It provides a great rocking start to the second half of the record. The single in waiting ‘I Don’t Love Anyone’ follows with its tasteful piano and saxophone sounding amazing in the mix. This song should come with a warning label or two as I can’t help but find myself smiling when it plays and singing along. The loving message shows that even though good guys don’t win all the time; they can win from time to time so let’s take a few minutes to celebrate finding the love of our lives while we can. Up next is the title track ‘In Vino Veritas’ where the band brings in some more tasteful saxophone as Tyla tells us a tale as only he can. This is one song where I do wonder if these gentlemen revisiting Tyla’s ‘Nocturnal Nomad’ album recently added some new ingredients that had never really been on a Dogs’ record in the past. Lyrically, this song feels more like the characters and stories from that album as opposed to the characters we met in ‘Hurricane’ or ‘Baby Glass.’

As we approach the end of the vinyl version, ‘Monster’ slithers and struts out on a biting sustained blues riff. Over the course of these songs, the band really explores multiple musical avenues and back alleys with ‘Monster’ creating an awesome groove with added harmonica and organ. I love the guitar riffs and licks throughout this one with it becoming more and more of a favorite with multiple listens with a wonderful howl added at the end for good measure. ‘Movie Star’ serves as an epic finale that brings everything together over the course of its nearly 5 minutes. There are multiple vocal hooks that can kill at a long distance, great guitar work, rocking piano, and a great beat. The extended musical outro is not to be missed as the song eventually slows down for one last vocal before we hear the arm raise and the vinyl come to a stop.

Some people may approach this album with reservations, but I would urge you to check them at the door. This album exceeds every expectation I had and makes me hope that we don’t have to wait too long before we get a follow up from these guys based on how awesome this is. Tyla’s Dogs D’amour acknowledge the long history of the Dogs in many ways but more importantly, add to the band’s magical history with an album that can stand proudly with every record from their past. With two additional songs ‘Empire’ and ‘Fuck Off Devil’ added to the CD and download versions of the album, there really is no reason to not check out this album. Quite simply, this is a magical record.

‘In Vino Veritas’ is unleashed November 16th



Interview here

Martin Chamarette.

“Ace Welsh, punk power-poppers” Nicotine Pretty are back, with a blast. If you’re already acquainted with their previous tracks, ‘Who’s Gonna Save My Soul?’ and ‘Nicotine Pretty’, this will come as no surprise. This E.P includes said tunes and four newies. 

The opener, ‘Bygone Boy’ fair roars out of the speakers; “whoah!” indeed. Like the Manics rubbing up against the New York Dolls, it’s 2 mins 50 that you’ll want to stick on repeat. Ginge Knievil sings of leaving his darker habits behind, but there’s no let up in energy here.

 ‘This Ship Ain’t Going Down’ is a fitting tribute to the band’s fight against personal difficulties. They’ve had a rough time, but the mood is hard-edged optimism; a fine singalong. ‘Bad Whiskey’ keeps up the addictive choruses, with a gorgeous, melodic solo.

‘Over The Edge’ written and sung by guitarist Lewis, keeps the early Manics feel, and reminds me of the Exploding Hearts, which is a very good thing.


With pre-sales from Sept 23rd and official release on Oct 12th, the rave reviews keep coming, and rightly so.


The band will also be their own support act by evolving into The Moodswingers before their main set. The crowd will be able to enjoy a back-to-back performance of the Wildhearts’ first two EP’s, which were released prior to their debut album. The Amorettes will be opening

The dates are:
Sunday 2nd December – KOKO London
Monday 3rd December – The Mill Digbeth Birmingham
Tuesday 4th December – SWG3 Glasgow

Twenty five years in and the Wildhearts are ready for more – originally formed in late 1989 in the depths of Newcastle, the group are returning to the big stage to perform their debut album, Earth vs the Wildhearts, in it’s entirety. A testament to their celebrated authenticity, 99% of the album is an amalgamation of original  demos, which were aptly recorded on second hand tape, and is characterised by the band’s distinctive fusion of hard rock, perfectly complimented by contemporary melodies.

Having released two EP’s, the Wildhearts prepared to record their 1993 studio album Earth vs the Wildhearts. The album included underground hits, ‘Greetings from Shitsville’, ‘TV Tan’, and favourite, ‘Caffeine Bomb’. An undisputed iconic debut, Classic Rock recently ranked Earth vs the Wildhearts as the 5th best debut rock album of all time, surpassing the likes of Black Sabbath and Iron Maiden.

Despite their many reformations, frontman Ginger will be joined on stage in what is now considered the classic line up of CJ, Ritchie on drums and Danny (bass) to create an extraordinary show.

Never ones to shy away from unusual formalities, the band will also be their own support act by evolving into The Moodswingers before their main set. The crowd will be able to enjoy a back-to-back performance of the Wildhearts’ first two EP’s, which were released prior to their debut album.

Working on their first full-length studio album in 10 years, the live shows are bound to be a reminder of the Wildhearts’ mastery of music and a portrayal of 25 years of prevalence within the industry.

Biter frontman Tuk announced through the band’s twitter account that they will be on an indefinite hiatus.  After some fantastic EP’s and two excellent albums we move onto the next chapter and hopefully, it won’t be too long before Tuk and the rest of the band are back rocking and rolling with whatever they decide to do next.  We can only agree that Rock and Roll never dies and we see Tuk, Matt, Phil and Joey real soon.

Buy Biters Here

That week went quickly.  No sooner did we bring you the finest alternative album reviews but we also ushered in some welcome reviews from the best live bands breezing through the United Kingdom.

You had Canadian rockers The Dirty Nil turning up their master volume last weekend and we also went loco over power-pop royalty Paul Collins and his new album Out Of My Head.  If those two didn’t tickle your fancy then you should try out some UK hardcore in the shape of Welsh upstarts Social Experiment and their stunning debut ‘Rumours of Our Demise Are Not Greatly Exaggerated’.

We brought you Commies who played with Tommy, Some Italians who just rock like fuck in the shape of some Peawees, German sleazy rock n rollers in the shape of Hell Nation Army. and as the week drew to a close we took on board The Virginmarys new record that is a must hear any day of the week.

We also got to have a chat with Alvin Gibbs and get the low down on his soon to be released debut solo album and the UK Subs bass player also had some amusing tales about his band and what he spends his time doing when not on stage.

All that was last week when we also announced details of some great tours and shows and new records being released.


To prove that we should be the bookmark site for all the best reviews, news and interviews over the coming seven days we’ve got exclusive reviews and interviews that you won’t find anywhere on the internet beginning today when we have Tyla spilling the beans about his new record and over the next seven days. Reviews from Deathtraps, Nicotene Pretty, King Brothers, and Bottle Rockets but we also go balls deep into some fantastic live show reviews from the likes of Glenn Hughes and Jesse Malin to name two so you know where to go and click when you’re skiving in work – Oh and Nev just gave you his tips on the shakers and movers in the 2018 ska/punk scene with a few just about to head out around the UK if you’re quick there might still be tickets left for The Interrupters / Bar Stool Preachers Tour.  So skive a bit more with us and keep up to date with what’s what.  As Lux used to say – Stay Sick! Luv

RPM Online

Turbocharged Rock and Roll writing.

Gerald Stansbury.

November sees the release of the awesome new album by Tyla’S Dogs D’amour ‘In Vino Veritas’ which finds the band using Pledge Music platform for the first time. For those familiar with Tyla though, he has been utilizing a similar since the mid 90’s when the brilliant solo album ‘Nocturnal Nomad’ first appeared. These Dogs D’amour include Tyla(vocals/ guitar), Gary Pennick (guitar), Matty James (bass), and Simon Hanson (drums) who have taken elements from the band’s releases over the past 35 years and added some new ingredients into the mix. It has proven to be an album that has me completely reassessing my favorite albums of 2018 as the 10 song version has been on repeat since first getting a chance to hear it. Tyla was kind enough to spend some time answering questions for us here at RPM Online.

Thank you Tyla for taking some time to speak to us here at RPM Online. I would say you have a lot happening right now but honestly, I don’t know if I could recall a time when there was not a lot happening with you.

Let’s start with the brilliant brand new album ‘In Vino Veritas’ which comes out in November via Pledge Music. What can you tell us about this album?

Well, I think that’s for the listener to decide, isn’t it? All I can say is  I had penciled out a few ideas ‘ere n there and so we went into the studio for a few days and laid down the bedrock…that’s when ideas transpose into either nowt or wondrous spirits that will last forever. We then built upon that over a period of weeks adding bits ‘ere and bits there and Bob’s yer Uncle, Fanny’s yer Aunt. Plus we only gave the Vinyl version out to reviewers so there are 2 more songs on the CD edition, not forgettin’ the limited edition double CD version with a whole CD of covers that inspired me from childhood.

You have essentially been making albums in a very similar fashion to Pledge Music since the 90’s starting with ‘Nocturnal Nomad.’ How has the process been with them making this one?

Yep, I’ve been releasing music on my own label ‘King Outlaw’ for almost 20 years now.  Pledge has given us the chance to reach more people which it has indeed done, some new and some old fans who had just lost touch, so not only are they Pledging but now they have discovered my Art Tavern and so are catching up. I wish I’d have done it ages ago, which I nearly did with Spike about a decade ago. I’m sure we shall do another one in the future. The only problem I have is keeping to deadlines and even when I manage it, some gremlins get in the works..but people are getting used to me so while on one hand people think I’ve got minions working away like Amazon others know it’s mainly just me and things take time…especially having to sign and number by Sharpie pen over  1600 CDs last week and about 400 Vinyl next week…me and my big ideas eh? I even did auditions for people to do my signature but no one passed the test…mad that eh? I even considered getting a stamp made..…I must say though I’m glad my name isn’t Baron Von Dribbling Mountbatten the Third eh?

‘Black Confetti’ was an amazing song when I first heard the stripped-down acoustic version on ‘Balancing the Ships of Honour.’ I love how the saxophone enters the song after that brief pause at the beginning. How did this new band version come together?

I actually wrote it on electric guitar and drum machine and sent it to Si, who put ‘real’ drums on it, then we lost the take somewhere in cyber world. I knew it was a good un, and sure enough, I was right.

I love that you guys have also released a four-song EP with the classic unreleased b-sides to make this feel much more like an event and a record release from the past. How did it come to be?

We recorded over 17 songs in the studio, so it was simply a matter of waste not want not. There’ll be another EP to follow after the album as well.

‘Bottle of Red’ has a sense of joy that runs through it which kind of reminds me of a happy ‘Satellite Kid.’ What was it like recording that one, as you also have an acoustic version on the EP?

When we started recording it was just me and Si, next day Matty came into the mix and then the following day Gaz landed.

At the very end of ‘Monster,’ there is a howl that brought a smile to my face as it recalls previous albums and songs like ‘Errol Flynn.’ Was that a spontaneous thing in the studio, or did someone suggest it?

Just Spontaneous .. people do suggest things to me… usually ending in …Off.

(laughing at end of the previous answer) This album really delivers the rock without any traditional ballads or acoustic numbers. ‘Movie Star’ makes a great closer with the guitar work and then the final slow down with the piano for the final words. How did you guys decide on the songs that made the album and the running order?

Well, I’d have said ‘I don’t Love anyone’ and  ‘In Vino ‘ were Ballads…maybe even Black Confetti. We all listen to and put ideas forward initially ‘Movie Star’ was going to be the opener and ‘111’ last.

This set of the Dogs has played with you as a solo act, as the Tyla J. Pallas Band, and now Tyla’s Dogs D’Amour. From an outside perspective, it looks like you guys are fully in tune with one another. What has the process been like with Matty, Gary, and Simon in really forming a band?

Simon has been playing drums for or rather with me since 1996. As I said it’s usually him and me go into the studio and knock out about 10-20 songs in a few hours. Then Gaz came along in about 2010, he played in The Dogs tour when Dave T, Timmo and Danny Fury were on board. Matty wrote to me asking if his band could support…I said ok, then me and Gaz did some solo acoustic gigs and that’s where we met Matty this time he was on acoustic. I liked him and we all got on so I’d ask him to support us, then we could never get a bass player and I said you’re always gonna be opening, do you want to play in the band with us?  Simple as that.

Several spots on the album include some amazing saxophone work as I mentioned regarding ‘Black Confetti.’ Who played it on the album? Did you already know all the spots where you wanted it, or did he add any that you had not anticipated?

Yeah, when we did a gig last year in Newcastle we were about to do ‘Drunk Like me’ and I jokingly said ..”is there anyone out there who can play saxophone?”…and this bloke jumps out from the packed crowd with a sax in his case. Once we had worked out what key it was (in as we use weird tunings) we blasted it out. I remembered and Gaz got in touch with him and he came and did the bits… He can make one sax sound like a brass section and his name is Ian Douglas.

I know there are a couple dates on the calendar before the end of the year. What are the long-term touring plans for this album?

Yeah, by the time we had finished the recording and decided on a release date all the venues we wanted to play were booked up. We are gonna do a few here and there next year including two festival headliners. We have some European dates in the pipeline like the usual Spanish tour which is always great fun… and  I’m planning a few Canadian solo acoustic shows. It would also be splendid to get back over to Japan as I’ve not been there since 1995! 

Your artwork has been indelibly connected with your music over the years thanks to all of the album and single artwork we have seen. One of the rare exceptions has been the live CD/ DVD with Tyla’s Dogs D’amour that was recently released. Why did you go with a photograph for that one?

I see lots of great Photos and thought it would be cool for a change.. if I could get a good one of us all playing together that would be a cover too…so all you budding snappers get your wide angles out for the lads!

As a fan over the years, we have seen your artistic talents spread across a variety of mediums from paintings on canvas to guitars and bottles as well as spoken word albums and books. Are there other mediums you want to try?

Yes, I’m planning on moving into a bit of sculpture. I’ve had the clay in the cupboard for a while and I know exactly what I’m gonna sculpt. I’m being tutored by me Missus Lady Jane as she is a ‘proper ‘ artist in her own right and often tells me that I ‘get away with murder’ in my style of drawing. I mean can you imagine if we all had massive hands…haha!! haha!!

At some point in the past, there were rumors that you had thought about doing some sort of country and western album. Is that still something being considered, or has it ever really been considered?

Yes it’s on my to do list, but please let me just get my speed death metal acoustic album out of the way first eh? haha!!

In this day and age of social media, you have largely abstained from it all with only brief dalliances on Facebook or My Space. I remember you once saying that you never wanted to meet Charles Bukowski because of the risks you run meeting people that you have respected or admired for fear of it going wrong. Obviously, we see examples of that happening today on Social Media where fans can stop following an artist over a different opinion. What do you see as the benefits of this digital age?

The digital age has given everyone a chance to have a bash at what they like, be it good or bad. You don’t need to rely on a record deal to make an album anymore … you just need some ‘friends…or fiends’ and yer away. Simon (Hanson) and Ginger Baker did a drum show once and out of all the 100’s of young drummers that were there only two  had ever done real live gigs. This is young drummers who all had millions of hits and followers but had never actually played outside of their bedrooms till this day. How mad is that?

What are 3 things you would tell yourself if you could travel back in time 35 years to the start of the Dogs?

One.  Don’t take that box of 25 Vinyl, the  Finnish ‘State We’re in’version down to the record and tape exchange because I didn’t like the mix or the cover and flog the lot for a fiver. Then to find out they would be worth a grand each less than five years later. haha!! 25 grand haha!!

Two.  In 1991 don’t smash up that 1957 J2OO Gibson acoustic as that is also worth 25K now.

and Three..Don’t put 50K on a horse that missed the photo finish and got involved in an oil painting!

‘See its not the principle its the Money.’ -Tommy Cooper.

You have lived in several countries and traveled all over the world. Are there countries where you would still like to live?

 Yep, and I’m ere..Edinburgh, Scotland.   

Any final words to fans here?

Thanks ever so for supporting me all these years and letting me be able to live this life of Reilly while I scratch my beard and look up to the sky pretending I’m contemplating the meaning of life and composing yet another song in Eb and oh yeah your order is in the post…honest Guv!



Pledge Music

Pictures 3,5,6 courtesy of Neil Vary Gig Photography

Dom Daley.

Hot on the heels of ‘Justice For The Risca One’ Deathtraps are on a frantic runaway train of garage punk and it’s steaming out of control towards a stereo near you and not wanting the green green grass of home growing under their feet this prolific bunch of reprobates is killing it on album number two.
Its uncompromising and at times brutal as it pounds your ear canal with its twelve tunes of acidic melodies – overdriven garage rock goodness and above all quality tunage.  I can’t shake the quote that the debut cd is the soundtrack you’ll find in the glovebox of a serial killers truck or words to that effect –  imagine Lemmy sharing a lyric book with some people who should know better but choose not to. Hidden inside is a social conscience and an astute eye on what’s going on (and wrong with this (often)  fucked up world we spin round on) VJ might not have the pipes of Aled Jones and have more in common with the dearly departed Mr. Kilmister but these boys have a shit load of melody and have borrowed a riff and a melody from some pretty awesome bands and put them to good use.
By the time you get balls deep (otherwise known as) the fifth track and its Dead Boys like intro as it heads feet first into what is another decent chorus that’ll have you toe-tapping at the very least its not subtle but I don’t spose it’s meant to be sometimes its best to let people know whats coming.  but let’s not get ahead of ourselves.  The titles might not be original but they will give you a feel for where these are boys are hitching their wagon.  ‘Automatic Thrill’ throws itself headfirst into the first slam dance of the day and the next few tunes follow suit (check you’re pulse and practice breathing steadily).
Turning up the speed ‘Track Marks And Lullabies’ thrashes about kicking and screaming whilst ‘Get Loose’ delves into some splendid punk rock waters whilst taking the foot off the gas.
‘Fucked Up’ might not see them nominated for the award for literary finesse and heartwarming lyrics and surely having veins of piss and whiskey can’t be healthy? Saying that ‘Bored Of You’ has a wonderful Fast Eddie like lick that hides behind VJ’s barkin’ dog riffage that goes well with the lyrical tone.  Deathtraps might not be reinventing the wheel but they’re playing garage punk rock n roll and doing it very well. ‘Teenage Knife Crime’ is terrifying and the title track is creepy crawly like that deranged killer who had a tit full and is going loco regardless of the consequences a real slasher of a song and the albums high point.
As we head into the home straight the blues and twos are flashing in the rear view mirror  and the tempo is reaching cardiac arrest levels hearing VJ growl into my ears is a weirdly beautiful thing even considering the subject matter ‘Know Your Rights’ is a grade A bonafide Belter and worthy of five pounds of anyone’s money. (Really only five ponds? I get it; it must be like the kiddie catcher they lure in with lollipops then bosh the cage falls and you’re theirs that’s what Deathtraps are doing)  Excellent tune.
But it’s never over until Deathtraps say so (or the police have managed to riddle this ride with bullet holes) you can’t hear them still breathing because ‘Fan Clubbing’ is also top notch and very well – special.  Sarcastic? Much? To take this bad boy home is the death of rock and roll – no, quite literally Deathtraps try their best to kick the beating heart of Rock ‘n’ Roll to death and almost manage it with this final shit kicker.
If you’ve been paying attention for the last 50 years then you will love this record like one of your own.  They’ve borrowed and stolen off the good and the great and used it to pleasure themselves first and foremost. If Deathtraps have gotta get some then so have you.  No brainer this – Buy It!
I’m now off to check the windows are shut, doors locked and the phone lines working because there are lunatics out there and they might be watching and listening (unless they have a gig somewhere and therefore I know where they are – as you were kids tonight its safe…..I hope)

Fraser Munro.


What is it with Sweden, they must put something in the water because it pisses rock & roll………..and nobody rocks a tash like Gothenburg’s Scumbag Millionaire!

Scumbag are the real deal. A proper rock & roll band playing hard, fast and nasty. For the last couple of years they’ve been gigging like bastards and blasting out great single after great single but now finally, it’s time to stand up and counted. It’s debut album time !!!!


Kicking off with a one finger piano and wah wah attack, “ASAP”, sets out the Scumbag stall. You know how the next half an hour or so of your life is gonna to sound and you can be sure (unless you are a complete bellend) that you’re gonna love it. “Fast Action” (single number 7) drills your head into the wall, while “Go!Go!Go!” nails your balls to the floor.

Next up is the new single “Under The Spell, “which hammers along in fine style. Look for the video on YouTube; quality shit and giggles.

Do you want me to compare them to Hellacopters? I bet you do….. bollocks, Scumbag stand up loud and proud, dragging their high energy action punk, straight out of the gutter.

“Killing Time takes” it up to full tilt, while the previous single “Burn Baby Burn” round outside one in proper anthemic style.

Side two revs things up with “Rolling Heavy”; a tune that will leave any Motorhead fans pumping their iron fists hard and fast. You even get some Stonsey Woo Wooos thrown in for good measure.

You know what you’re gonna get with Scumbag, full on hooky as fuck tunes and “Got No Brain”, “Give Me A Break” and “White Flash” don’t disappoint. There are so many choices for single number ten lurking on this side of this red vinyl slab.

Opening with a thick and greasy bass riff, final track “Get In The Van” slows things down a touch but pounds along like a full-on rocker should with some more one-finger piano and Woo Wooos chucked in for good measure. Culminating in a skull-crushing brain crunching riff, you need to take a breath before flipping the record over and giving “Speed” another crack.

Contender for album of the year……. Full Stop, FACT!

Get in there quick to get hold of the red vinyl because you’ve already missed out on the pre-order only poster.

Buy Me

Nev Brooks.

Picture the scene, I’m Sat watching BBC 4 (someone has to) and on comes out of the blue (not entirely) Roots, Reggae, Revolution, an absolute classic fronted by Akala, an in-depth analysis of the history of reggae and how Ska came forth from the Dancehall.


Sitting where it began as something that came out of necessity, through times of struggles, designed and delivered to help lift up the community sending forth a huge message both political and social.  Further down the line it drifted with real Roots reggae taking hold, sat simmering in the background until it leapt to prominence again in the late seventies/early eighties under the banner of Two Tone. Now if we look at music and cross genres, Rock and Roll always preached rebellion, looking down on an older generation, Punk spat not just Anarchy but a sense of Nihilism, whereas Two Tone (Ska) preached togetherness, Black and White united against a social structure where the far right were at their most active. The message cutting forward against a Thatcherite Britain, promoting togetherness, kicking against austerity measures and giving a clear message through infectious rhythms and well-voiced opinions.


Leaders of the movement The Specials, The Beat, The Selector all still going great guns now, or should I say all re-ignited given their voice back through those same issues coming full circle, the far right rising, Brexit looming and the need for the musical underground to find a voice. Taking the sound on mutating it and adding a hint of Anarchy was always going to be a good thing so it stood to reason that Ska was going to infiltrate the Punk underground for its next stage of development.

Now over the last four/five years I’ve really immersed myself in the sound and one band that look set to cross over into the mainstream has to be The Bar Stool Preachers, skanking out of Brighton I’ve ended up in conversation with vocalist TJ McFaul on a number of occasions raved about both their LP’s Blatant Propaganda and Grazie Governo both of which you can pick up here Bar Stool Preachers live they put on an amazing show and second LP Grazie Governo should be the one to launch them into the big time, if you can get bigger than playing to 15,000 across Europe supporting Die Totenhausen. You might not have heard of them? I suggest you rectify the matter, check it out


Next up if that really takes your fancy bounce along to The Popes of Chillitown again a band simmering away tearing up venues nationwide whether you pick up the first LP A word to the wise (it was a pledge release) their sophomore LP To the Moon or the new LP Work hard, Play hard See you in the Graveyard you will not be disappointed All of which you can pick up here :-


Popes Of Chillitown these are a must-see live act, ripping through Reggae/Ska/Dub/Punk/Hip-Hop and Drum and Bass all done with an infectious smile, check it out


Now you might be starting to build one of those recommended playlists if your streaming this stuff, which granted most people do nowadays, but what you really should be doing is supporting the bands not the streaming platforms, get on the website or better still buy at a gig, you might even manage to get it signed!!!


Next up has to be Skaciety bouncing out of Kent they released an absolutely blinding LP Overstaying our welcome you can pick it up here

Bandcamp again yet another band tearing up stages across the UK, check them out

Sitting on the TNS roster of bands next up Faintest Idea released an LP that absolutely tears your face off called the Minimum Rage, followed up by the second LP The Voice of Treason politically in your face and with a real hardcore edge this attacks the genre from a different angle, still ska undoubtedly but leaning more towards a real punk/ political edge. You can pick both up here


By now your either bouncing around the room or wondering why the fuck haven’t I listened to these bands before, take a breath there are many more what about The Skints, Random Hand, Call me Malcolm, Complicated men of Leisure, Captain Accident and the Disasters to mention just a few more. Or if you want to look further afield what about the mighty Interrupters?


or the band I’m going to leave you with Jaya the Cat? Here come the Drums indeed!! Enjoy go ahead and discover your new favourite band. As with everything the biggest fun you’ll ever have in this musical world is discovering something new.

Jaya the Cat


BSP pic by Dod Morrison

Ben Hughes.

The Virginmarys ain’t had it easy the last few years. Following the release of their mighty sophomore album ‘Divides’ in 2016, the Macclesfield band found themselves at a crossroads. The end of their record contract and the shock departure of bassist Matt Rose left the duo of vocalist/guitarist Ally Dickaty and drummer Danny Dolan with an uncertain future.

Well, you can’t keep a good band down. They picked themselves up, wrote songs and set about doing things independently as a two-piece band. With a new lease of life and a sense of ultimate freedom, the band took things into their own hands, self-producing and self-releasing last year’s critically acclaimed ‘Sitting Ducks’ EP. Now, they release their third and possibly most important album of their career.

Produced and engineered by Ally, during the hottest summer for years ‘Northern Sun Sessions’ is a massive sounding rock album. With its anthemic vocal hook, opener ‘Look Out For My Brother’ immediately sets the tone with pounding, indie beats, big guitars and cool dynamics. It’s clear from the off the band have lost none of their irresistible Northern charm as Ally preaches a message of unity to all who will listen.

The following ‘SOS4UNI’ continues that epic, cinematic feel the band managed to capture on their previous albums. Ringing chords and tribal beats make way for haunting, atmospheric backing vocals. With passion and fire in their bellies, the duo bash out the chorus as Ally spits the lyrics with Northern-tinged venom.

I find it hard to define The Virginmarys sound, which is always a good thing in a band. But, maybe they truly have morphed into Motorhead meets New Model Army. They definitely are a rock band, now more than ever.  I mean, there’s a rhythmic QOTSA meets Royal Blood vibe on the likes of ‘Eye For An Eye’ and ‘Wanna Be Free’, a killer intensity in the rousing chorus of the former with immense regimental drums.

Yet, there are several elements that set them apart from most modern rock bands. They have a knack of creating visuals with the lyrics and the music in a way that not many bands can achieve. Ally has a way with words that draws you in like you’re sharing the ride with him as you take in every bend of a guitar string and every vocal nuance. Whether he’s commenting socially or politically you connect spiritually with what he has to say and what he is feeling.

It might be the guttural vocal delivery of ‘Blind Leads The Blind’ that gets you or the pogo-inducing chorus of ‘Step Up’ that hits the spot, but believe me…something will hit the spot. Maybe it’s when Ally lays himself bare for all to see on the emotive title track, as he swears he’ll never drink again over picked chords with his eyes closed. Or again on ‘Flags’ as he states “six years sober, I’m still hungover”. One thing’s for sure, clever wordplay and a knack of building a song to an epic conclusion is never far away.

‘Get Me Back Home’ shows a slight departure for the band with its trashy blues feel and slide guitar goodness. But its album closer ‘All Fall Down’ that steals the show and reverberates long after the virtual needle has lifted. It’s a classic, signature Virginmarys dark brooder that builds, then drops, creating atmosphere. Ally hits you in the feels with his words as Danny surrounds his verse with wave after wave of percussion.” Waiting like a ticking bomb… like a loaded gun”, you wait on his every word as the song reaches an intense crescendo, Ally screaming his lungs out like his life depends on it. Holy shit, what a killer way to end an album!

In an uncertain musical climate, many bands have taken their careers into their own hands in one way or another. We all love an underdog, right? Well, The Virginmarys are the underdogs, not only have they taken the bull by the horns, but they’ve sunk their teeth in and refuse to let go. ‘The Northern Sun Sessions’ is an album filled with passion and fire, and most certainly a career-defining album for this Macclesfield duo.

Buy Virginmarys Here.