Italian punk-blues musician Gianni Tbay alias THE BLUES AGAINST YOUTH has unveiled a video from his new album. ‘Particle Filter Blues’ is the first single to be taken from As The Tide Gets High And Low. His first full-length album for Turin’s Escape From Today label, it follows on from 2019’s acclaimed Evil Flatmates album. The album was composed (mostly) and recorded during lockdown by Gianni himself, a first-time occurrence. The album’s main inspirations can be found in the countless tours undertaken by him throughout Europe and especially his US tours during 2018 and 2019. 

“Along the never-ending process of getting and shaking the blues you may bump into a type of blues you can’t shake, no matter how hard you try,” he says. “You just gotta deal with it. The Diesel Particulate Filter can be one of those unshakable ones when it starts to show signs of subsidence. A real itch when you’re on tour and driving to the next destination. So you will find out that you and your vehicle have to put your heads together to keep consumption low, watch out for the oil levels and drive smoothly fast. Preferably on a highway.”

Initially hailing from Rome, but resident in Turin since 2014, Gianni/TBAY is a prolific artist, releasing five full-length LPs and five 7” singles since 2009. Rooted in Outlaw Country and Delta Blues, Gianni’s sound has evolved over the last ten years or so, partially through his discovery of John Fahey and Doc Watson, but mostly through relentless touring to the tune of well over a thousand shows, sharing stages with the likes of Watermelon Slim, Bob Log III, DM Bob, CW Stoneking, Bob Wayne, Popa Chubby and others along the way.

As The Tide Gets High And Low is available to pre-order here.

Theatre Of Hate


In 1980, Kirk Brandon formed Theatre Of Hate from the ashes of heralded punk band The Pack.  Joining Kirk on vocals were notable punk musicians Stan Stammers and Luke Rendall, along with old school friend, Steve Guthrie and Canadian born John “Boy” Lennard, who revolutionised the band’s sound with his haunting sax lines.
Theatre Of Hate’s debut double-A-side single, “Legion”/”Original Sin”, topped the independent chart in 1980, and “Westworld”, their debut album, produced by Mick Jones from The Clash and released in 1982, held the number one position for 21 weeks.  The single taken from the album, “Do You Believe In The Westworld?” has become an anthem and is still widely played in clubs and on international radio, as well as featuring on numerous compilation albums.
Supporting the likes of The Clash & Ian Dury lead to Theatre Of Hate headlining major venues across the UK & Northern Europe.
Theatre Of Hate imploded in 1982, with Kirk taking Stan forward to form Spear Of Destiny, but the band has resurfaced over the years to play some very special shows.
Having been asked by John Curd to join The Damned for a massive show at London’s infamous Roundhouse in December 2014 the band once again joined the fray. A short set of dates around the London anchor show attracted rave reviews, as did a 6 night night SOLD OUT run in December 2014. (see reviews below)
2015 saw the band play two short jaunts across the UK in April and December both sets of dates wowed large crowds.
During touring in 2014 and 2015 the band constantly recorded at Oxygen Studios in Manchester, the first new studio album in 30+ years is now complete and released via a private pledge! ‘Kinshi’ was released on October 14th 2016 on CD, Vinyl, Download & Dub to pledgers. The 12 brand new songs are simply stunning. 
On their upcoming tour, Kirk, Stan and John will be joined by current Spear Of Destiny band member Adrian Portas (New Model Army) on guitar and Chris Bell(Hugh Cornwall) on drums to pay homage to the iconic TOH sound.

APRIL 2022
13th– Stockton, Georgian Theatre
14th– Darwen, Library Theatre
15th– Grimsby, Yardbirds
16th– York, Crescent
17th– Dunfermline, PJ Malloys
20th– Brighton, The Albert
16th– Georgian Theatre, Stockton
22nd– Guildford, Holyroyd Arms
24th– London, New Cross Inn

The Loyal Cheaters are an Italian/German Rock n’ Roll band formed in 2020, inspired and seduced by the 70s and 80s sound of bands like AC/DC, Runaways, Slade and the latest Scandinavian Action Rock. The band has signed a deal with Atomic Stuff for the worldwide promotion of their debut album.

Next up we have no less thann the 9th video off their debut album. Acid Blood are a Swedish punk rock band and you can pick up their debut album in Europe and North America. “Acid Blood” LP in Europe Here Ltd ed “Acid Blood” CD in the USA Here Digital version available on most platforms

Finally how about the third video from Ravagers? Cooler than an ice cube these cats have a new album out on Spaghetty Town and Wanda Records and this is the third video from the album

Cyanide Pills ‘The Kids Can’t Be Trusted With Rock N Roll (Damaged Goods Records) Don’t know bout you but this pandemic seems to have gone on longer than expected and in its wake, it’s delayed the new Cyanide Pills album so for that reason alone it should fuck off pronto along with the Tory Government.

Two new tracks landed in the Singles Club jukebox and are like a breath of fresh air and right up to speed with the expected standard of tunage from these Yorkshire lads with the lead track. Mashing up The Beatles with the guitar break and some on-point cheeky lyrics all tacked down with a Ramones Undertones riff that doesn’t leave your head for days. But wait, ‘Do You Wanna Know’ is just as good as the A-side with an insanely catchy chorus. I love Cyanide Pills and on this evidence, the new album will rule, the only downside is it’s only two songs and not more. Still brilliant Record of the Month? Maybe. Buy Here

Steve E Nix & The Famous Lizards – ‘Motorcade EP’ (Damaged Goods Records) Holy Shit! I thought that Cyanide Pills having a new single out was a nailed on no brainer for record of the week, month, year and then This arrived! Steve E Nix has penned four new tunes (more is good) and they are trefuckinmendous. The lead track ‘Motorcade’ is an epic earworm and as it seeped into my brain I was grinning from ear to ear and punching the air like Rocky. What a stunning tune. It infectious, power pop with a bit of a rockin edge and the hook is to die for.

We all know who Steve E Nix is but the Lizards are bassist Kicks (also from The Briefs), guitarist Emi Pop and drummer Miles Freeborn and they deserve a tip of the hat because this band is awesome. ‘Hallways’ is slightly dreamy and very laid back almost Johnny Thunders meets Hanoi Rocks like in arrangement and delivery and that excites me big time. ‘Nite life’ is a retro thumper with a great riff and some top BV’s. Before this EP cuts and runs, there’s time for a bit of a rock and roller in the shape of ‘Avenue Child’. Cool hook and some punchy guitar licks all wrapped in some cool Chuck Berry twelve-bar not sounding a million miles from Toilet Boys. Nix and the band nail it and off the back of this, I hope there’s a long-player involved? because SEN&TFL are dredging some seriously good ground here.Record of the week/month? You bet! Buy Here

The Courettes – ‘Misfits & Freaks’ (Damaged Goods) What a hattrick this is from Damaged Goods or are they just showing off their roster of acts that are as diverse as this and yet still churn out banger after banger. ‘Misfits & Freaks’ is a brand new version of one of the standout tracks from the third killer album, Back In Mono. It comes backed with an exclusive new song ‘Killer Eyes‘.

‘Misfits & Freaks’ was penned after a bittersweet concert in France in 2020, on the last tour in the pre-pandemic world. They played at 9 pm then lockdown at midnight. What was a pandemic? and what the hell we were getting into, so people that day really partied as if there was no tomorrow. If you missed The Courettes latest album then you were well and truly locked down and in a bunker. It’s Rock and Roll baby and it’s got style and swing and is a fabulous song that really does sum up that bittersweet feeling the duo spoke of. On the B side its,- well more of the same really just a bit less focussed and perhaps a little hazy but a great arrangement and perfect delivery. another top single. Buy Here

Lammping – ‘Everlasting Moor’ (We Are Busy Bodies) purveyors of psych-rock, release the first single from their forthcoming album due out this March on We Are Busy Bodies. The highly anticipated EP Stars We Lost is a collection of 70’s soaked space-rock bangers that’ll surely win the hearts of fans of Black Sabbath, Blue Cheer, Spacemen 3, Stereolab, De La Soul, Kraftwerk, and Eels. It’s an infectious track that burrows into the ear canal and takes hold as it swirls around your head. It’s a headfuck of sounds alright and this track is the lead off of this five-track EP ‘Stars We Lost’ Buy Here

Drug Church – ‘Detective Lieutenant’ (Pure Noise Records) Lifted from the new album ‘Hygiene’ it’s a quirky track that builds into a wall of noise before falling back into a dreamy riff with a pavement-like vocal leading the way. Its an understated lead track off the new album but it does take time and if you invest you’ll be rewarded big time from a band I’ve got a lot of time for. Buy Here

Split System – ‘Hit Me’ (Legless Records) Melbourne punks Split System had only one jam together before lockdowns kicked in in Melbourne in 2021. 5 songs were written and with rehearsals and gigs on the back foot once again the only option was to record remotely via email. Everyone recorded their parts at home and Split System’s self-titled EP was recorded, ‘Hit Me’ is the first released and what a banger it is.  The band is fronted by Jackson Reid Briggs on Vocals and members of Stiff Richards, Speed Week, No Zu and The Black Heart Death Cult.

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Vulture Lord – ‘Hark! The Hymns Of War’ (Odium Records) We don’t get to cover some old-school black metal in the singles club very often but today’s our lucky day. Harking back to some Venom like Black MEtal Vulture Lord knock it out the park with this track lifted from their split (we love a split) with Black Altar ‘Deathiah Manifesto’. All Hail Vulture Lord because this is a banger. with four tracks each on the split, it’s VFM all day long. C’moooooooooooooon! As it stands I know fuck all about Vulture Lord but if there’s more like this then bring it on top-notch old-school black metal and the packaging is on point and extreme, brilliant. Hark! is almost as good as the stuff Midnight is knocking out and this is after an 18 year break. Welcome back Vulture Lord how can you not like a band that has a track called ‘Bloodstained Ritualknives’ – Brutal.

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The Hollywood Stars -‘The Bottom’ (Golden Robot Records) After more than 40 years apart, they are performing together again and making new music and ‘The Bottom’ is the start of a new chapter as we move into 2022. It’s a rolling heavy distorted lick is akin to the likes of ZZ Top and tenuously Aerosmith (maybe) the band gets their groove on and jam out the tune.

It’s not the strongest track this session of the singles club but there are plenty of meaty notes beign bent out of shape on them there six strings.

Suicide Notes – ‘Trampstamp EP’ (Self Released) Opening this four track EP with the thumping bass line that signals a rollocking tune ‘Rolling With The Punches’ thats as good as anything the LA Guns street sleazy bands write. this Oxfordshire five piece kick up a shit storm on the opener with a really good tune that has all the chops and attitude youd expect. The only thing missing is some honking horns under the chorus but the breakdown is timely and I’d imagine this would go down a storm live. ‘Snake Skin Blues’ is more of the same with a more laid back less intense rhythm than the opener.

Theres time for a decent cover of ‘Dead Flowers’ that has some nice guitar breaks and a suitably sleazy tempo but if I’m being picky I’d rather have an original song than anothe rcover of this Stones classic even if it is very well executed. Wrapping things up with a very sweet acoustic song ‘Black Dog Howlin’, Suicide Notes offer plenty of variety in these four tracks on this here EP and three very varied original songs. the band shows they have talent aplenty and can craft some really good songs as well as being able to go through the gears if they need to. Very impressive EP indeed. I look forward to hearing more more more! Facebook

Feeder – ‘The Healing’ (Big Teeth) Nice to have the Welsh boys back making music this their first new music since 2019s ‘Tallulah’. Before the new album ‘Torpedo’ is released they offer up ‘The Healing’ via this rather cool video. the song is classic Feeder and builds as the three piece dish up an epic sounding slice of alternative rock.

Torpedo is released on March 18th and will be available on digital, CD and vinyl. Pre-order here.

Diplomatic Immunity – ‘The Hunt (Golden Robot Records), Hailing from Denmark they play big sounding rock’n’roll – and to be fair its catchy! The band successfully fuse the best elements of both U.S. and British rock to create one big sound. ‘The Hunt will be released on February 15th via Golden Robot Records on all digital platforms.  Facebook

X-Plicit – The Party Is Hot’ (Sneakout Records) Sounding like Cock Rock was never wiped out by Grunge this rocking four piece are defying time and partying like its 1998. throwing out shaes not seen since skid row toured with white lion and Diamond Dave. oh hang on, the eighties called and they want their party dancers and jack daniels back and yes there is a lot of cowbell happening and it is called ‘The Party Is Hot’. Wow! Cowboy boots on and lets rock! Facebook

Pat Todd & The Rank Outsiders – ‘Tell Us All Story’ (I-94 Recordings) We had to end this sitting of the singles club on a high and what way to do that than with the most excellent PAt Todd & his rank Outsiders with ‘Tell Us All a Story’ an uptempo thigh slapping, harmonica honking slice of good times. It thunders along and leaves you wanting more. The guy simply doesn’t write bad songs so these two are most welcome with the B side ‘Prison Of Love’ being a smouldering rocker originally recorded by 60s band Frut.

Its not reinventing the wheel its just rolling along with plenty of rock to accompany that roll. Sounding as good as ever its in the vein on a cracking maincourse of Dave Edmunds meets Nick Lowe for some Rockpile with a side of Georgia Satellites – whats not to like? Always going to be a winner with those ingredients. pick it up Here

To celebrate the release of their new album, ‘The Fantasy Life of Poetry & Crime,’ Peter Doherty & Frédéric Lo will be touring in May with shows in the UK, France, Germany, The Netherlands and Belgium. Tickets go on general sale on Friday 4th February at 10:00am and are available if you preorder the new album now  Here or  Here

The dates are:

THU 5th Paris Le Trianon

FRI 6th Cologne Carlswerk Victoria

SAT  7th Berlin Metropol

MON 9th Amsterdam Zonnehuis Amsterdam

WED 11th Ghent Handelsbeurs

FRI 13th London Koko

SAT 14th Birmingham Town Hall

MON 16th Liverpool Olympia

WED 18th Aberdeen The Lemon Tree

THU 19th Hull Tower

FRI 20th Cambridge Junction

‘The Fantasy Life of Poetry & Crime’ is released through Strap Originals on Friday 18th March and will be available on Vinyl (in multiple colours), CD, cassette and digital download along with exclusive and signed items from the Official Store  Here

A new single ‘You Can’t Keep It From Me Forever’ is available now to stream and download, along with the previous single ‘The Fantasy Life of Poetry & Crime,’ when you preorder the album Here

The Undertones are proud to release ‘Dig What You Need’, The Best Of The “Reformation Years” 1999 – Present on 11th March, on Dimple Discs.

Bandcamp ‘Dig What You Need’ Pre-Order:  

Digital ‘Dig What You Need’ Pre-order:

Possibly one of the greatest pop-rock bands of all time, Derry’s The Undertones have roots that go back 45 years to the 1977 punk explosion when they were beloved and championed by BBC DJ John Peel. Songs like ‘Teenage Kicks’, ‘Get Over You’ and ‘My Perfect Cousin’ are household staples beloved by millions across three generations of music listeners. The band’s reputation as recording artists and a brilliant live act has carried them through the recent two decades since they reformed in 1999 with new singer Paul McLoone. ‘Dig What You Need’ collects the best of their two reformation albums, 2003’s “Get What You Need” and 2007’s “Dig Yourself Deep”. Both albums have been digitally remastered and both are being released for the first time on vinyl. In addition, all tracks have been remixed by producer Paul Tipler (Stereolab, Elastica, IdlewildPlaceboJulian CopeThe House Of Love). 

Guitarist and founder member Damian O’Neill notes…“So dig this: Thrill Me / Oh Please / I’m Recommending Me / Dig Yourself Deep / Here Comes The Rain  – all firm favourites on an Undertones set list these days, songs penned by John O¹Neill and Michael Bradley. So it’s a no brainer really that all these songs (and more) should finally be included on a best-of compilation taken from the two albums we’ve recorded withPaul McLoone. Even better is the fact we got producer/mixing maestro Paul Tipler to remix them with fresh ears and make them sound even better than the originals. Add to that the wonderful packaging and sleeve design courtesy of Bruce and Mary from Arthole and lo and behold we have a sonically cohesive bunch of nuggets waiting to be rediscovered all over again. So dig this compilation my friends – you know you won¹t be disappointed”.Since their reformation, the band has toured several times across the UK, Ireland, Continental Europe, Japan, Turkey and North America, with highlights that include Glastonbury and a pre-game performance at Celtic Park in Glasgow before a UEFA Cup play-off between Celtic and Arsenal. The band is much loved in all quarters of the British and Irish music media, with their debut album being voted into the Q Magazine Top 100 albums of all time. The band will spend March – May on the road with gigs across the UK, Germany and Scandinavia.  

The Undertones dates in full:

March10 – Sheffield, UK @ Leadmill *

11 – Northampton, UK @Roadmender

12 – London, UK @ Electric Ballroom

17 – Brighton, UK @ Chalk

18 – Frome, UK @ Cheese & Grain ^

19 – Cardiff, UK @ Cardiff SU Great Hall ^

31 – Newcastle, UK @ Boiler Shop ^

April01 – Manchester, UK @Academy – ^

02 – Liverpool, UK @ O2 Academy ^

09 – Munich, Germany @ Feierwerk

10 – Weinheim, Germany @ Cafe Central

22 – Dublin, Ireland @ Academy

May13 – Bremen, Germany @ Kulturzentrum Lagerhaus

14 – Düsseldorf, Germany @ Zakk

15 – Hamburg, Germany @ Markethalle

17 – Malmo, Sweden @ Plan B

18 – Oslo, Norway @ Vulkan Arena

20 – Göteborg, Sweden @ Pustervik

21 – Stockholm, Sweden @Slaktkykan

22 – Copenhagen, Denmark @ Pumpenhuset

*Special guest Neville Staple Band ^Special guest Hugh Cornwell Electric

Tickets available from

Social Media Links –

new solo album out 18.03.22

Pre Order Here

Frontiers Music Srl is pleased to present ‘Perfectly Imperfect’, the new solo album by Chip Z’Nuff, who is best known for being one of the founding members of the popular Chicago-based rock band Enuff Z’Nuff. A first single and video from the record entitled ‘Heaven In A Bottle’ is out today, with the album out on 18th March.

‘Heaven In A Bottle’ is co-written by former Enuff Z’Nuff vocalist Donnie Vie, but all other songs on ‘Perfectly Imperfect’ are written by Chip, with the exception of a cover version of Honaloochie Boogie’ by Mott The Hoople. The album includes guest appearances from Joel Hoekstra (Whitesnake, Trans-Siberian Orchestra), Steven Adler (Adler’s Appetite, ex-Guns ‘N Roses), Daxx Nielsen (Cheap Trick) and Daniel Hill (Enuff Z’Nuff).

“All the songs have been written as I see the world through my rose-coloured glasses. It’s my heroin letter to the new generation,” states Chip.

Chip Z’Nuff is an American singer, songwriter, bassist, producer and radio personality. He founded the popular glam rock band Enuff Z’Nuff in 1984, with their self-titled debut album issued in 1989 and becoming a huge hit. Chip has released more than twenty albums with Enuff Z’Nuff and has toured with the likes of Missing Persons, Steven Adler, Cheap Trick, Poison, The Tragically Hip, Foreigner, Alice Cooper, REO Speedwagon, Ace Frehley and more. The Grammy-nominated artist has also produced dozens of other records and has had his music hailed by renowned US TV host David Letterman and radio personality Howard Stern.

In addition to writing, recording and touring with Enuff Z’Nuff, Chip currently hosts The Monsters of Rock radio show on the Dash Radio Network, playing the finest hits in hard rock and heavy metal to a large and dedicated audience.

Social Media –

Following the release of 2020’s extensive compilation ‘Too Cow to Punk’, tenacious troubadour Pete Berwick continues the rich retrospective of his ever-expanding career with the arrival of ‘Ballads that Bleed’. Whereas the former focused mostly (but not solely) on the harder side of his creative spirit, the latter tackles the more melancholic side of Berwick’s personal journey.

As rousing as his tougher anthems may be, it’s the ballads where the biggest part of the story is told, and it’s where Berwick appears most in his element. While the audience might be calling for Nuclear Boy or Rebels and Cadillacs, it’s not difficult to imagine Berwick sitting comfortably in the corner of a dark roadside bar, bleeding out through the microphone over Only Bleeding, Island, or I Fought with Angels.

Ballads that Bleed contains 23 tracks covering much of this introspective output throughout the many years that he’s been honing his craft. From the beautifully delicate Just Make it You and Me Tonight, to the thoughtful Streets of Pasadena or the observant This Used to be a Town, each song inspires a different image – each presenting another small part of the wider picture Berwick is masterfully painting. Some songs are purely about hardship, such as I Ain’t Going Back There Anymore whilst others, like Anyway, focus on the complex nature of personal relationships.

As an accomplished storyteller, it’s fitting that for every hard rocking song that’s slugging it out in the trenches, there’s an equally self-defeating one, battered and bruised in the gutter. It’s a pattern many of us can relate to, and it’s part of what makes Berwick’s music indeed so relatable. As an artist there are many sides to Pete Berwick – musician, actor, boxer and all-round entertainer. For him the work never quits, and thus the journey continues.

And long may it do so…

Buy Here


Author: Craggy Collyde

Hot on the heels of the Edsel box set ‘Black Francis: 07 – 11’ comes the vinyl debuts of ‘The Golem’ and ‘Nonstoperotik’. Color vinyl, 2LP, Remastered, Gatefold is just about right for this series of Black Francis releases on wax for the first time.

‘The Golem’ is (for those who are unaware) a soundtrack album written and performed by Black Francis for the San Francisco International Film Festival screening of the 1920 silent horror film ‘The Golem: How He Came Into The World’. Of the concept, Francis said “Film fest wants a soundtrack to be performed at a screening… I don’t know how to do that exactly, but the idea that me and some buddies hang out at a studio and make a record I understand. So that’s what we do.” This vinyl reissue features the “rock songs” version of the album across two 140g grey vinyl and very nice it is too. I guess having a decade of distance between the release and the re-release is great as you can really put some love into the detail. I’ve not seen the film and have no inkling to do so but I might after hearing this record. from the first real track ‘Makanujo’ with its jazzy saxophone my brain is bouncing. ‘Bad News’ is like something the Eels produce. eighteen tracks splashed out over two slabs of Vinyl is great and don’t feel intimidated by the “Soundtrack Album” tag because as Francis fans will know all his albums are more like a journey anyway and some of the songs here are excellent and some of his finest to date off any album.

It’s a lot of music to get through but the experience is rewarding and the songs are great even out of context or sequence I raised an eyebrow and chuckled at ‘Little Star Theme’ when I first heard it on CD and still do on record with its dramatic pauses and flute work. I guess as a record Francis was able to throw the kitchen sink at this project and from Flutes to harpsichords and loud distorted crazy horse guitars, its all in here The acoustic strum of ‘Stars’ to the chaotic ‘You’re Gonna Pay’ its a great bunch of tunes and well worth picking up.

Buy Here

‘Nonstoperotik’ – First released in 2010, NonStopErotik is the final Frank Black Francis solo album. It was written in the back of a Cadillac whilst being driven around the “crispy brown hills of Cali”. It was then Recorded in Los Angeles, Brooklyn, and RAK Studios in London. producer and frequent collaborator Eric Drew Feldman was at the controls. Black said of the recordings “I had the title of the record and decided that was the theme, so I guess it’s supposed to be an erotic record. For me, I think it’s more of a weird record.” Here it is on wax for the first time on coloured vinyl.

Two months after The Golem, ‘NonStopErotik was done and dusted. The album was recorded in double quick time much like a lot of Francis’ records with cohort producer Eric Drew Feldman.

A lot of this record feels like it could have been Pixiefied and flows really well. tracks like ‘Corina’ are just rock n rollas plain and simple but with that lose feel. Again a record I perhaps overlooked when it came out and one I’ve not played in a few years but have throughly enjoyed revisiting it here. Sure I go back to the first three solo albums that were Frank Black but maybe these re releases have sprinkled a bit of magic in these here grooves and this one has benefitted from the straight rockin feel. ‘Six Legged Man’ is majestic lofi fuzzed up and to the point which is uncomplicated and spot on. Between two and three minutes long makes for a cool album I’m not sure its erotic but Frank was right calling it a little weird but not too weird except for maybe ‘Wild Son’ and the mental picture of ‘When I Go Down On You’ and the title track is piano heavy epic and dark all without being any of those things if you catch my drift? it never builds into a loud ending but maybe a touch jazzy and smouldering before ‘Cinema Star’ closes off a really good record maybe ut of step clocking in at almost six minutes sounding like a Sonic Youth song especially the first third but then veering off with the querky keys at the end.

Tip of the hat to Mr Francis / Black hes a great songwriter and releaser of records with a hefty and impressive back catalog that has now been rightly released on vinyl. Do yourself a favour and get involved and dive in. Quality!

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Author: Dom Daley

The man behind the Pixies who has contributed plenty to the musical landscape of the last 20 years, Black Francis, the singer, and chief songwriter, has produced plenty of albums under different banners and changed styles from Rock to Grunge, country to folk, and back again but has such a distinguishable voice that ties the lot together and makes sense of them all. His first solo album, 1993’s ‘Frank Black’ was a belter, as was his second, a real tour de force.   2006’s ‘Fast Man Raider Man’ had some country stylings and the synth and brass re-arrangements of his Pixies songs on ‘Frank Black Francis’, you could pick up a record, and whilst the style changed the voice didn’t and nothing was out of bounds and as a result fans seemed more accepting of whatever he would throw at them.

‘Paley & Francis’ isn’t any different. Teaming up with Reid Paley for this 10-track LP, sees this 2011 album pressed on wax for the first time and comes in a gatefold sleeve and gets the love it probably deserved. ‘Curse’, is still a great opener with its shuffling snare and walking bass line with Francis’ dirty telecaster guitar very much in the fore.

The record trades lead vocals as it meanders through some gentle Paley led tracks before you get to the off-kilter piano tinkering ‘Seal’ with its dragged six strings that sounds like it could fall into a drunken stupor at any moment or the pair would forget where they’re taking it but you know this is meticulously crafted don’t you?

It’s a record that works really well and the two styles bounce off for a really strong left-of-center album that is excellent in its flow. ‘The Last Song’ is Paley being dark and throwing up a Johnny Cash like drawl that plays with your brain. It’s been a while since I played this album but the Gun Club stomp of ‘Magic Cup’ fills me with joy as does the Johnny Thunders like ‘Copy Cats’ rock n roll of ‘Deconstructed’ with its sleazy saxophone over some uptempo rock n roll and there is the Neil Young like ‘Crescent Moon’ before it draws to a close with the dreamy ‘Happy Shoes’. A really good album that has stood the test of time and over a decade later still throws up new curves that excite.

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