So Death Rock, Garage Doom is upon us.  A couple of new genres to add to that list that people need to pigeonhole our Rock and Roll.  Black Totem are exponents of such sub-genres, you can call it what you like – I’ll just add right out the traps that this here new record is full of fine tunes and whatever pigeonhole it be this is gonna be one of the best albums of 2021 and its only January.

I’ll tackle the Danzig tag right here and now sure its there but so what if Glen released a record as good as this anytime post Misfits I’d tip my hat and herald his genius instead its Fins Black Totem and their second offering that we gather here today to champion and what a breath of fresh air it is too.

Heavy as an anvil, sharp as a tungsten dart, cool as a frozen moon.  Black Totem have moulded an album full of hard rock meets punk rock and jams on the best of the Cramps and Stooges for good measure.  Its a hell of a record with twists and turns aplenty as they jump from the bombastic opener ‘Begone Vampire’ with all its chilling dark Gothic overtones and Rock guitar work it’s as heavy as a breezeblock yet stylish as Elvis in black.  To be fair the whole record from the artwork to the delivery is Gothic and dark but it’s enticing and warm as the heaving ‘the Devil’ will testify. from the Stooges like intro to the chiming chorus that will have you chanting and throwing your arms in the air with approval.  It’s a brooding mauling slice of the dark stuff and I’m sold. Respect! top tune!


‘1990’s’ is up next and as the he vs she vocals works a treat to add another texture to the hellish howls as the guitar work is on point and very much appreciated. The record goes full throttle for ‘Black Nekro Gloves’ as the punk and metal worlds collide in a fantastic romp and Death Blues is a pretty decent description as all hell breaks loose.  Once I’ve finished getting this oof the player I’m digging into their back catalogue to see if this is a fluke or was the debut album leading the way and something I’m missing out on until then songs like the dark ‘Bloodstained Owl’ are dominating my stereo speakers.  Band members Spit Poison (don’t Laugh at the back) and Wera Wolf have appropriate names much like Guitarist Sam Hate who by the way owns this record with some fantastic breaks and diabolically heavy riffs that Ron Ashton would have been proud of its a delightful record to stumble upon.

‘Dead Meat’ is the perfect blend of what this album is about as the melting pot of styles works perfectly. Its not all full tilt mind as the doom-laden ‘Welcome Lucifer’ sails closer towards the Danzig mould as does ‘Warlock’ but like I said earlier if Danzig penned this record it would be being championed from the rooftops for what is essentially one hell of a record and for dark, heavy, bluesy Rock it’ll take some beating this year and I’ll confidently put that out there Black Totem – if you’ve never heard them well here’s your chance to familiarise yourself because they might just fly when the time is such that they can get out there and play live because on record they are most excellent. ‘ii: Shapeshifter’ is fuckin’ champion all hail Black Totem!


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Author: Dom Daley

THE NEW OK came out mere months after the release of the band’s highly acclaimed THE UNRAVELING. Drive By Truckers stayed prolific releasing more than most in 2020. Here’s the latest track with the accompanying video. CONNECT WITH DRIVE-BY TRUCKERS:  Website / FACEBOOK / INSTAGRAM / TWITTER / YOUTUBE

Second single from Tom Atkin ‘Honey Brain’ Former frontman of indie-punk pioneers The Paddingtons, Toms new music is innately matured and natured into a more diverse melting pot of creativity. The gritty, brutally honest storytelling of his past has pensively evolved, with the adolescent swagger replaced by stoic confidence.

An olden forgotten should be classic gets dusted down shaken up and released on vinyl here in Europe for the first time just prior to Christmas and thank Gawd! Nikki first came to our attention with her ‘Feline Roots’ album and we were impressed with her Blues meets Rock and Roll tunes and a voice that was as soft as Marshmallow and as loud as a clap of thunder.

As good as Nikki might be on record I’m sure she comes alive and playing Rock and Roll shows so Covid and all the shutdowns haven’t been good to her but we’ll have to make do and this delve into the back catalogue is a welcome relief from all these here lockdowns.


Think the obvious -Tina turner (for that soaring vocal), Joplin (for that raw blues n soul), DC (for the volume and Rock and Rolla) and hell yeah The Bellrays for lighting the touchpaper for all this noise.  All this talent would be irrelevant if Hill didn’t have the songs to back it all up and walking the walk as well as talking the talk is something Nikki Hill most certainly does.  Take ‘Oh My’ for some straight down the line boogie-woogie Rock and Roll that just kicks out the jams old school. or the Stonesy ‘Struttin’ ‘ that comes from the same school as The Black Crowes did.

The shake and shimmer of the more laid back darker ‘And I Wonder’ makes way for the glorious Faces barroom of (Let Me Tell You Bout) Luv’ it’s sunshine Rock and Roll that deserves to be heard and to compliment Hills vocals the rollicking barroom joanna playing is wonderful. It’s definitely the more swaggering staggering blues numbers that steal the show here.  ‘Hot Shot’ is gloriously confident and the lyrics “Too little ain’t enough for me” is about spot on.  The licks might be as old as time but the delivery is superb and that solo hits the spot.


It’s not all bluster and partying because tucked in the tail is the stingingly beautiful soulful ‘Nothing With You’ where Hill shows restraint again playing the song, which is excellent, rather than just wailing and less is certainly more here. But wait, the yang to the balladry is ‘Scratch Back’ that was surely written to be rocked out live which is where all this leads – Live has to be the place to hear this album much like the excellent ‘Feline Roots’ as an artist you can see Hill growing from one record to the next and this is a well-rounded place to start full of top tunes handled by professionals who clearly believe in what they do and if Rockin is their business then business is good…no business is great.  Check it out and come join us in twistin’ the night away.

Buy Here


Author: Dom Daley

With large parts of our planet covered by a cloud of doom and gloom right now (and for very valid reasons I might add) I’m feeling somewhat moved to be able to dip my first (metaphorical) toe into the 2021 review pool and come out with a smile right across my face.


That’s because this second EP from American power poppers The Lickerish Quartet is quite possibly the most joyous record you will hear anywhere in the world right now.


Following hard on the heels of 2020’s excellent ‘Threesome Volume 1’ release the initial thing that hits me about this new release from Messrs Dover, Smith and Manning Jnr (I mean c’mon, do really need to explain who these guys are) is just how much more immediate the songs feel than those on its’ predecessor. Don’t get me wrong, I loved that first EP, it’s just that from the very first acoustic guitar strums of ‘Do You Feel Better?’ it actually feels like I’m welcoming back an old friend, and having recently played catch up on YouTube with the engrossing interviews Roger did with Warren Huart I now totally get what he means about XTC being one of his go-to bands for inspiration. This is quirky angular pop music that is sugary sweet with just the required amount of introspection and if the ‘Go With The Flow’ segment doesn’t get any Jellyfish fans out there all dewy eyed, then you’re certainly a tougher human being than I.


‘Sovereignty Blues’ pops up next, driven by a drummer throwing his kit down the stairs kind of rhythm that is equal parts Ringo and Jeremy Stacey (for it is he who actually makes up the mythical quartet status for this release) and this beauty is the type of social commentary The Dowling Poole did oh so well on their stunning 2020 LP ‘See You See Me’. Firmly rooted in the widescreen world of 60s psych-pop culture you’ll have this song stuck in your mind for days after.


Moving matters very much into the world of 80s pop we then have ‘The Dream That Took Me Over’, which is without question my favourite song on this EP. Initially reminding me of Scritti Politti at their very best this song soars like a Top Gun (Uma)jet and feels like it would not have been out of place on say a George Michael or Go West album at the peak of their popularity.


Closing things out with ‘Snollygoster Goon’ (Google it – it’s much deeper than you might think) we return to the world of Sid and Marty Krofft inspired power pop where the guys’ previous bands lived most of their lives, and here if anything they come as close as possible to recreating those magnificent ‘Spilt Milk’ days of yore. Glorious stuff!


Already available to buy via Lojinx on CD/download and on streaming worldwide it might be worth your while also pre-ordering a copy of the vinyl, which is due around April time, as that (just like with ‘Volume 1’) adds four instrumental versions of the tracks on the B side, and trust me on this -you can never have enough Lickerish Quartet in your lives.

This is truly wonderful life affirming music and if we did do ratings here at RPM it would be an instant 5 star review. Now (Imperial) drag your mouse over the links below and go BUY IT!


Website  /Facebook

Author: Johnny Hayward


“We were on tour in Germany opening for Iron Maiden when Powertrippin’ crashed into the UK National Chart at #5. The Maiden boys held a party for us that night in their hotel to celebrate. We suddenly felt very validated, looking back I think we were “

Ricky Warwick

Although initially inspired by punk, when Scottish school friends Stump Monroe (drums), Floyd London (bass) and Ricky Warwick (guitar, vocals) joined forces with guitarist Tantrum in 1988, they chose a harder rocking, heavy metal sound. Snapped up by Polydor Records for 1989 debut “Blood, Fire & Love”, their more punk infused aggressive approach was a welcome relief from the glam orientated sounds imported from across the Atlantic. This was followed by “Soul Destruction” in 1991, and then “Powertrippin’” in 1993.

The Almighty demonstrated that British hard rock had plenty to offer at the beginning of the decade, and in 1991 The Almighty were special guests of Megadeth, a tour where Alice In Chains were the opening act. This tour highlighted which way the wind was blowing, away from hairspray bands in favour of something grungier from the Pacific Northwest of America. “Powertrippin’” was also the first album to feature guitarist Pete Friesen, replacing original member, Tantrum.

As well as the singles ‘Addiction’, ‘Over The Edge’ and ‘Out Of Season’, this expanded, deluxe reissue of “Powertrippin’” includes the B-Sides ‘Blind’, ‘Bodies’ (originally by the Sex Pistols), ‘Insomnia’, ‘In A Rut’ (originally by The Ruts) and ‘Fuckin’ Up’ (originally by Neil Young and Crazy Horse). Live versions of ‘Takin’ Hold’, ‘Jesus Loves You…But I Don’t’ and “Powertrippin’” illustrate what a powerful band The Almighty have always been on stage. The bonus disc also includes demo versions of ‘Free ‘N’ Easy’ and the title track from Soul Destruction: which was never officially recorded or appeared on the final album. Plus there’s even time for an acoustic take of Neil Young’s ‘Rockin’ In The Free World’!

This release features a fully illustrated booklet, complete with detailed liner notes from Malcolm Dome based on interviews with the band.

Disc One: Original Album

1. Addiction
2. Possession
3. Over The Edge
4. Jesus Loves You…But I Don’t
5. Sick & Wired
6. Powertrippin’
7. Takin’ Hold
8. Out Of Season
9. Life Blood
10. Instinct
11. Meathook
12. Eye To Eye

Disc Two: Bonus Tracks

1. Takin’ Hold (Live)
2. Jesus Loves You…But I Don’t (Live)
3. Powertrippin’ (Live)
4. Blind (B-Side)
5. Soul Destruction (Demo)
6. Addiction (Radio Edit)
7. Insomnia (B-Side)
8. Wild And Wonderful (Demo Version)
9. Fuckin’ Up (B-Side)
10. Out Of Season (Demo Version)
11. Bodies (B-Side)
12. Free ‘N’ Easy (Demo Version)
13. Rockin’ In The Free World (Acoustic Version)
14. Hell To Pay (Acoustic Version)
15. In A Rut (B-Side)
16. Out Of Season (Radio Edit)



Pre-order the album HERE:


Buyers will also receive the non-album instant-grat track ‘Tunnel Of Love’




“We knew the new album had to be special. We’ve been away for a while. The first album was a straight shot, the second on the rocks, with this new one we had to kick down the brewery doors!” Pete Spiby


Back in June of 2017, Sheffield rock beasts Black Spiders waved goodbye to an army of loyal fans with some sonically charged shows at London’s House Of Vans and Sheffield’s Corporation before retreating into the shadows to lick their wounds and shed their skins.


And then, in November of 2020, with the world in the grips of the Coronavirus pandemic and after a long year of very little fun and even less rocking, from out of the silhouettes they returned with ‘Fly In The Soup’, the first new Black Spiders music in six years. And it felt good. Just under four-minutes of prime riff-crammed rock action, a stadium filler waiting to happen, and exactly the feel-good shot in the arm the world needed, while we await that other vaccine.


The seeds of the Black Spider return were actually planted last summer, when singer and guitarist Pete Spiby began taking to guitarist Ozzy Lister to start writing new material and before they knew it, they had amassed the best part of 40 songs in a very short period of time which they honed and whittled down to album contenders, ready to hit the studio. And then the pandemic hit.


“It’s certainly been a strange process, in unfamiliar territory,” explains Pete. “We started to look at how we could do it given the restrictions and not only that, but we had to replace our original drummer too. More obstacles throw in our way to smash through. We found a way. For us and probably most other bands, we would usually take a riff or song idea to a rehearsal and thrash it out ‘till we either had something or it ended up in the song graveyard! This time around we couldn’t do that, so myself, Ozzy and on occasion Adam Irwin (bass player) started to send ideas back and forth until we had something to work with in GarageBand. We got to a point where we had enough song ideas with basic structure to go into a studio proper, at a convenient time, to put something down. It was at this point when we had to look for a new drummer.”


With former drummer ‘Tiger’ Si Atkinson unavailable to play, with a week or two of grooming, the band took a chance on Planet Rock DJ Wyatt Wendel to occupy the drum stool. Without having played with him, and in some cases, never having met him, they demoed some of the songs through the wonders of modern technology and once they got into the studio (Axis Studios in Doncaster) with producer and engineer Matt Elliss, who had recorded both previous Black Spiders albums, the music came together thick and fast.


“I’ve never joined or worked with a band in this way EVER,” laughs Wyatt. “2020 certainly made it surreal. One minute I’m making some online drum videos for a radio station and then Pete pops up and asks if I’m busy. In the second minute I’m asked if I’d like to record some tracks. The third minute I agree. Soon after I’m in a studio recording tracks I’ve only heard demos of, having NEVER met the band or rehearsed, and it was all done on a wing and a prayer. In a weird twist of fate none of this would have happened without the pandemic of 2020! Funny how things can work out….”

“A Pete/Ozzy writing session at the beginning of the year had produced some promising results, but it felt like barriers were popping up everywhere,” explains bassist Adam Irwin. “We started talking about how we could use technology such as GarageBand to help, and slowly but surely the song writing gathered pace. We could sketch out ideas on the iPad, send them out to everyone else who could then add their own parts, suggest changes etc. Confidence grew, as did our newfound editing and recording skills. It was time to hook up with our old producer Matt Elliss and try these new songs out in the studio.


“Heading into the studio to record songs we’d written but never played together, with a drummer that we’d never met, is one of the stranger experiences I’ve had while being in a band. Thankfully, Wyatt has turned out to be an excellent addition, who despite his faults (loud, southern) has fit right into the band dynamic. I feel like I’m already starting to get a feel for his playing style despite the fact we’ve still not actually played together, and I can’t wait until the moment when we can start playing live again. Covid has made life really tough for so many of us in our industry. And yet, this new way of song writing has been liberating, this is the most consistent and prolific we’ve ever been, and I am immensely proud of this album.”


And they have every right to be. Against all of the odds, Black Spiders have crafted an album that features thirteen tracks of high-energy, feel-good rock n’roll contrasted by demonic doom that despite the disjointed, isolated way it was recorded (even second guitarist Mark Thomas, in lockdown in Spain, recorded his parts remotely), sounds like a band, firing on all cylinders, sweating it out in a dark and dank practice space with lyrics that perfectly document these insane times we are living through.


“We had to dig down deep to pull out some gems and what would we want from Black Spiders,” questions Pete. “Probably not just your regular boys adventure stories, so I looked at themes for the songs, in the bands that I held dear and what was relevant to my and our lives, as a lot had gone on personally for us all, over the time we have been away. Sabbath had all the answers I needed…war, vengeance, mental health, death, conservation & climate change, where are we from? Relationships, friendships, our flaws. Where are we going? Alien life and Mother Earth – some of which made the record.”


Kicking off with the aforementioned ‘Fly In The Soup’ single, this third self-titled long-player wastes no time in grabbing you by the scruff of the neck and dragging you through an album where good times, hooks and riffs are not in short supply, but the doom-drenched likes of ‘Wizard Shall Not Kill Wizard’ and the psychedelic groove of album closer ‘Crooked Black Wings’ give us an album of many moods and dynamics and a reason to be cheerful in 2021.


And why does the album have no title?


“It wasn’t hard picking a title for the album, as we decided that the focus should be on the band, not the album title, so we decided not to have one. It was the easiest thing of the whole process. Let the music do the talking….


Play Loud. Black Spiders are back.


‘Black Spiders’ track-listing:

Pre-order the album  Here


You can support the band via their new Patreon Fan Club.


For the cost of a couple (even in London) beers you can get exclusive content, merch and more.


Check out and see the different levels available.




Norwegian rockers Death By Unga Bunga have recently announced the release of new album ‘Heavy Male Insecurity‘, out on 12th February via Jansen Records.
The band has now shared the video for latest single ‘Egocentric’ below.
‘Egocentric’ is a beer-drenched banger about looking out for number 1. “The egocentric mind has no empathy for others and their opinions. Something you’d expect from a child, but it’s often still the case for an insecure grown man. It’s OK to be selfish sometimes, but it doesn’t mean you have to be a complete dick all the time”. It follows the release of bombastic first three tracks ‘Not Like The Others‘, ‘Trouble‘ and ‘Live Until I Die‘.

Welcome back pop pickers and the first Rainy Days & Monday of 2021 is here with a few new releases we think you should investigate.  First up is Canadian rockers Dirtbag Republic with the first single off their new album. ‘Wannabees’ which is taken from ‘Tear Down Your Idols’ which is due in the spring. Unlike Donald Trump you can find Dirtbag Republic on the internet here: Website / / /


Second up we have the new video from our very own Craggy Collyde with the splendid ‘In The Shade Of The Big Oak Tree’ Hit Craggy up over on Bandcamp Here 

Then finally how about some ‘Panic’ from the fantastic Millie Manders & The Shutup’   Taken from their debut LP Telling Truths, Breaking Ties. Panic discusses our destruction of the planet and our horrendous farming practices, and the release date for the video reflects Millie’s desire to inspire New Year’s Resolutions for change.

For those wondering what 2021 has in store for Texan singer/songwriter Ryan Hamilton, a cryptic teaser came early in the first week of January with a video merely carrying the number 1221 and the hashtag: #newmusic

Hamilton, recently heralded by Spin magazine as one of the ‘Best Lesser-Known Artists of the Last 35 Years’, now explains the concept: “It’s a song a month, on the 12th of every month, for the whole of 2021. 12 songs. In 2021. Not only does ‘1221’ look cool, it’s not like I’ll get another chance in my lifetime to take advantage of this numerical palindrome”.
The first release coming on January 12 is a goosebump inducing cover of Spin Doctors’ ‘How Could You Want Him (When You Know You Could Have Me)’, a track from the band’s seminal debut 1991 album, ‘Pocket Full Of Kryptonite’. Each monthly track will be released digitally across all regular platforms for download and streaming via Stevie Van Zandt’s ‘Wicked Cool’ label.
Giving the origin behind the Spin Doctors cover, Hamilton says: “Credit to Producer extraordinaire, Dave Draper for the nudge on this one. He knows I love the music of the 90s, and he suggested this Spin Doctors song. Lyrically the song is SO interesting, and I thought the chill, sunshine-y vibe was a great way to start the year. Plus, I know Chris Barron a little from when my former band played with the Spin Doctors. I can’t wait for him to hear my cover of his song. “
Future 1221 monthly releases will see brand new songs from the pen of Hamilton, creating a virtual album across the year.
Facing the real potential of several more months in isolation, the kernel of 1221 took root. Renowned for his killer live shows, but with any regular form of touring currently off the table owing to the prolonged pandemic, Hamilton considered how best to stay busy in the coming year. Using present-day recording techniques across the internet, having producer and collaborator Dave Draper on a separate continent was certainly not a barrier. The pair had recorded Hamilton’s solo EP of Country covers, ‘Communique’, during the very first lockdown of 2020, in isolation from Texas (Hamilton) and the UK (Draper). Communique proved to be a winning formula, scoring Hamilton his first iTunes No. 1, a feat repeated with his subsequent release with the Harlequin Ghosts, ‘Nowhere To Go But Everywhere’, an album that also scored high on multiple Official UK Charts.
With several UK festival appearances transplanted from 2020 to – everything crossed – this summer, thoughts for Hamilton’s return to live & in-person shows preoccupy the artist’s thoughts for the year: “I’m used to spending half the year in the van touring and that thrill in hearing audiences singing my lyrics back at me will never grow old. Online shows are fine for engaging with fans in the meantime, but it’s no replacement. On a recent Stage-It show we lost the live feed and I ended up giving the performance of a lifetime for an entire song to an audience of literally just my dog Peaches. We had to plan a ‘safe word’ in the live chat in case it happened again. That word, I can proudly say – is ‘BANANA!’ 
Here’s to Hamilton having the opportunity to share these new lockdown creations with live audiences again very soon – this time without the need for a ‘safe word’.

(When You Know You Could Have Me)”


Website / Twitter / Instagram


Well, you’ve had yer clocks you’ve had yer paintings and yer messages on bottles.  He’s made music that’s soundtracked yer life and played shows you’ll take to the grave.  He tells tales and japes and never acts his age and on this here CD he does what he’s best at and that’s writing music and songs that we’ve all championed at some point during our adult and not so adult lives.

More Pam Airs and John Cooper Clarke and Bukowski than Shelly Or Keats and that’s where the charm lies.  If you’re a fan you get it.  Some do some don’t but it is what it is from the wonderful artwork to the fractured recitals it’s all part of the charm.


‘Isolation Station Blues’ is a rugged often dark walk on the Wildside where the bottleneck gets put to good use and the blues come rolling on by. The opener sets the tone and is something we’ve all been living for the past twelve months and jolly good it is too.  The great thing here is the songs come thick and fast and the next one to peel open is the wonderful ‘Humans Just like You’ its classic Tyla from the style of playing to the drawl and melody.  You lean in closer and drink it all in.  Demo or not it’s a quality slice of tunage that for sure.


If you are looking for a reference then I’d happily put this next to the magnificent Johnny Thunders and his ‘Hurt Me’ album. take songs like ‘The Chambers’ for example it could easily have come out of a Thunders writing session full of dark melancholy. The delivery is late night and exquisite.

The fact that it’s not just a man with an acoustic guitar but he plugs in a dry Electric for songs like ‘Life Goes On’ is cool.  It’s the germs of some fantastic songs right here some of the best I’ve heard from T in quite a while he’s mining a rich seam of songwriting recently maybe this lockdown malarky is focussing and in turn some fine fine material is pouring out not just here but ‘The Powder Dry EP’ was exceptional. I love the melody of ‘Where The Past Never Goes’ but this was only release number one there are two more to go.


Volume two begins with a reflective ‘Deliver Me’ then ‘Ballad Of An Extraordinary Man’ and the big Chords of ‘Lighthouse’ in contrast ‘Mayday Mayday’ is a bruising electric riff.  ‘Rewind’ is a short recital along with ‘Tales Of The Money God’ which is a little piraty oh argh! But Vol 2 ends with the excellent ‘Tenderhooks’ and onto Vol 3 which is entitled ‘El Dia De Los Muertos’  you know Day of The Dead.  It’s another ten demos folks and again some crackers are hatched in here I mean I love ‘Best Thing Ever’ dont know why I gravitate towards that one over another but thats the beauty of music right there hell, ‘Dorian’ has the potential to be a glorious Tyla song.


We have spoken words amongst the demos as well so in a nutshell this two-CD collection we have over forty compositions and all flavours and shades of Tyla that we know and love ‘Wherever You Go’ has touches of Bowie and Ronno going on from the melody to the delivery its Hunky Dory either way.  I’m sure when normal human gatherings are a thing and Tyla can get in a studio and explore these songs with his fellow musicians they will grow and blossom further and some will be just right as they are in this early raw form.  Either way, my advice would be to get your mitts on these here demos and get em on the player pronto yer lockdown will fly by, trust me I’m a…happy chappy.  Chin chin as they say around these parts and with almost a dozen additions to the previously available tunes its a no brainer.


buy the set Here

Author: Dom Daley