Eel Men – ‘Are You There God Its Me’ (NFT Records) Jangly jarring guitars over a good melody is always going to be a single to grab the attention. This one is backed by a metronomic robotic backbeat and guitar lick that is part Devo and part Kraftwerk and a spoonful of Buzzcocks for good measure. There that’s the yardstick to aim for three classic bands thrown into the punk rock melting pot and out pops the Eel Men
Kurt Baker – ‘Keep It Tight’ (Wicked Cool Records) It’s fair to say that this cover of the Single Bullet theory song is held dear by Mr Baker so much so he burnt a cdr of the song from vinyl and ended up covering it here. Coolest song in the world by underground garage sounds about right. Kurt Baker should be huge I guess those of us in the know will just have to hold on to that secret until the rest of the world catch up with us and Bakers genius. until then Keep it tight kids
Get it here
Delusions Of Grandeur – ‘Self Titled’ (Self Released) Lockdown blues got to some Hip Priests and a couple of Bitch Queens and out birthed Delusions Of Grandeur. A noisy (obviously) chug through four blistering tracks of tunes that if the backyard Babies wanted to get back into the groove they should listen to. With guitar licks sparking off the wheels of this Punk and Roll beauty as the EP opens with the bashful ‘Drinking My Life Away’ with some gang vocals on the chorus as these gents trade licks. Sing-a-long drinkathon. Nice. ‘Shits Fucked’ is sped-up snarled punk n roll that just about summed up the past 18 months rather nicely.
If you ever loved the really early ‘Get some Action Now’ era Hellacopters and hankered after some Dragons meets a healthy dose of Gluecifer then this is a no-brainer. With a nod to some spicey Motorhead on the closing track which is never a bad place to be. Excellent EP from top to bottom. Four track 7″ available on gold, white or black vinyl – Buy It Here
Steve Conte – ‘Flyin’ (Wicked Cool Record) with a cool acoustic song Conte is Flyin. The latest track off the upcoming album, ‘Bronx Cheer’ its a song in the mould of The Faces balladeering meets classic early Black Crowes. Steve says of ‘Flyin’, “This one goes back to 1994. We jammed on this in my rehearsal studio very organically and I came up with the lyrics later. I did a few demos of it over the years and it never left my consciousness.” The lyrics focus on perseverance and how, “in the face of adversity, disappointment and trauma, a person of strong will can keep going for their dreams.” Whilst the track has a wonderful sound from the acoustic to the earthy Drum sound and the snap of the snare it showcases Conte’s vocals really well and the track has a really earthy sound. It’s all about light and shade it doesn’t always have t be full-tilt rock and roll. Great tune. You can pre order the album Here
Billy Idol – ‘The Roadside’ EP (Dark Horse Records) Four tracks of vital idol with opener ‘Rita Hayworth’ with his familiar snarl and curled lip vocal it’s glossy and has that Idol pound on the rhythm and slick gang vocals on the chorus. What’s not to like? it is what it is.
Seconds out and the King Rocker cranks up the laid-back acoustic guitar for ‘Bitter Taste’ it’s a reflective side of Idol and one he’s used to good effect on his last couple of records. ‘U Don’t Have To Kiss Me Like That’ sees a pop beat and some female vocals puncturing the wall of sound It’s a big sound and made for the American market and another side of Idol he’s used to great effect throughout his career. To be fair he could write this stuff in his sleep. Drum machine at the ready as he goes for the reflective cool sound on the EP closer which to be fair is a decent tune and his vocals sound really good but I’d have prefered an album please Billy rather than an EP.
Cutters – ‘Midnight Bus’ (Self Release) A cover of Betty McQuade’s 1961 hit ‘Midnight Bus’ sees Australian Punks give the tune a bloody good tuning to be fair. There is no question in my mind that the most impressive new records are coming from down under where there seems to be a hell of a lot of great bands currently kicking the shit out of instruments all over the continent.
Cutters are right up there with the finest exports from Oz now get over to Bandcamp and check em out you might just fall in love with these punks. Their mini lp ‘Australian War Crimes’ is a fuckin belter! Here
Junkyard – ‘Lifer’ (Acetate Records) ‘Lifer’ backed by ‘Last Of A Dying Breed’ sees these Californian Rockers come out swinging. It’s hard-rocking licks with a thumping great rhythm section what were you expecting? If this was a new AC/DC track people would be hailing it as the second coming. These guys are veterans of the hard rock scene and still have energy and a pocket full of tunes that cut it. Never meant to reinvent the wheel just borrow it for the Hog their riding with this as the theme tune for burning rubber on the highway.
The Professionals – ‘Spike Me Baby’ lifted from the new album ‘SNAFU’ is Tom Spencer throwing his Loyalties tip into the Professionals jar and knocking out the best of both worlds. Sure it’s not Jonesy but it has his blessing and once you’re over that it’s a really good song and why wouldn’t it be. Its familiar has a rock-solid beat courtesy of Mr. Cook and a decent melody with some sweet guitar licks to boot. If you’re wondering yes the album is rather good as well some excellent tunes on offer
Jackson Reid Briggs – ‘Fear/Move’ (Legless Records) Jackson Reid Briggs is back with a 4 track EP of punk/soul belters. Jackson got together with two mates a few days after the initial lockdown in Melbourne, Australia ended in November 2020. Noone except Jackson had heard the tracks yet but they smashed them out in a few hours in a storage unit. Coming on like a ragged US Bombs its class punk rock n Roll.
From the opener ‘Fear’ through ‘The Chase’ which happens to be the pick of the four on offer here. ‘Move’ is a blast of ‘on the hoof’ punk rock with a swirling keyboard mixing up some great gang vocals and spat out lyrics. ‘Monster’ closes off this EP in grand style with a great thumping beat and chanted chorus with a cool guitar lick and some splendid handclaps. Fantastic four to be fair and well worth checking out. Buy Here