The European release of The Unknowns second album, released on Bargain Bin Records in Australia is now out on Drunken Sailor Records in the UK.

The recently expanded four-piece has been bolstered by the addition of The Chats’ Eamon Sandwith on guitar, sees this Brisbane no-nonsense punk release their no frills just business album ‘East Coast Low’. It is not rocket science, it’s punk rock and it’s top-notch punk rock. It manages to draw from some pretty catchy pop tunes and collide it with ragged punk rock Aussie style it has the spirit of The Saints mashed up with The Ramones. It’s energetic, melodic, catchy and bang on the fucking money.

It all kicks off with the infectious big riff-a-rama of ‘Shot Down’. Its snotty, raw and bouncing with attitude. It’s the new school rockin the old school and has a ripping guitar break that’s not flash but spot on. You wont have to play it over and over to join in with the chorus but you’ll be on the bed with the tennis racket ripping out the solo before getting all sweaty with the feedback as the song crashes and burns. However, ‘Dianne’ is like the Dead Boys tipping up with a Ramones Chord book and a bunch of 77 choruses. Perfect!

Its not reinventing the wheel but its cruising along with the tool our forefathers left behind its thunder meets Dee Dee meets the Boys and of Course The Saints and threw them all in the back seat and went cruising round for a killer house party to crash. Garage punk, power pop, and straight-up rock n’ roll its all sewn into the rich tapestry that The Unknowns deliver.

‘East Coast Low’ is ten tracks of anthemic sing-along punk rock n roll and don’t worry about it dragging on it clocks in well under half an hour and is a no brainer if you are looking for a fix of snotty punk n roll done with a carefree attitude ‘Thinking About You’, and ‘I Don’t Know’ and ‘Beat Me’ are full of dumb fun and who doesn’t like that? Its like The Ramones never happened.

We’ve written about Australian Punk Rock and we’ll write about it again right here right now. Punk Rock is in safe hands with them folk down under they sure can rock n roll they do it just about better than most folks do you can now say that The Unknowns are going to come steaming to the front and centre of the cool kids looking for their next fix of sunshine, beer-swilling punk rockers The album crashes and burns with the blinding ‘Supersonic Love’ if AC/DC had grown up on the Ramones and Stooges and had short hair they could have sounded this good. Remember the name kids ‘East Coast Low’ is the Unknowns aiming high and on this evidence they’ve got every chance of success because they certainly got the chops, Buy It!

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Author: Dom Daley

The Fourth Libertines album has been on some journey. After being put back for one reason or another the release is finally upon us. All the anticipation and build-up has been an age but that wait is over and ‘All Is Quiet On The Eastern Esplanade’ is with us, and if it could be summed up in one sentence (Which it can’t) it is fair to say its the most Libertines album you could wish for in 2024 – predictable yet unpredictable it weaves a rich tapestry as the band deliver what might well turn out to be a career highlight.

After a short run of tiny club dates to wet the appetite of the salivating masses the album kicks off in true swaggering ragged glory with the albums lead single ‘Run Run Run’ but that is only the start of it. Buckle up kids this is one hell of an album and as the band open up the ragged ‘Mustang’ as they go through the gears they enter cruise control for the Carl-led song that is masterfully captured on wax, this truly sounds like the band has managed to bottle that spirit and jour de vivre and give it a sound as they weave their merry melodies.

‘Have A Friend’ is Docherty rattling off the vocals, but it’s the energy they’ve captured here from the tight rhythm to the heartfelt lyrics that fall from his mouth – it’s pure audio joy before the relaxed and trippy ‘Merry Old England’ enters the ether. With a slightly dreamy tempo and piano leading the way it’s like a mature (should I call it that?) trip with the solid beat as Pete tackles how people coming to this island might view this land and a song of hope that the real beating heart of a country is still welcoming and hospitable and a place where people can come and make it their own adding to its rich tapestry wherever they come from and its all wrapped up in a very busy arrangement from the backing vocals to the lush string in its undertow. great song.

‘Man With A Melody’ is the record’s first ballad-like track. With its pace slowed right down and the vocals intertwined perfectly as the song unfolds having all voices heard on the twisting vision of a busker (Carls Words) but possibly the most un Libertines track on offer here showing you can indeed teach an old dog new tricks.

Back on brand ‘Oh Shit’ is a blast, shaking off any cobwebs and sure to be a live favourite. On offer with this new album is essentially eleven songs that weave their merry way via uptempo rockers and the slower more thoughtful songs as well as the more jazzy ragged numbers such as the gentle ‘Barons Claw’ as its loose barroom number complete with jazzy trumpet and piano tinkling and hushed late-night vocals.

The second side of the record is certainly a more varied ensemble of tunes than the opening side as the Libertines spread their wings. ‘Shiver’ sounds like Pete opening another chapter of his soul then ‘Be Young’ picks up the pace as Carl spits out the lyrics the energy of the verses then a handbreak turn on the chorus before the bridge of a reggaefied verse before tearing up the solo. An excellent song which only leaves the final thoughtful ‘Songs They Never Play On The Radio’ as the band gently signs off a rather splendid album that twists and turns and draws out the best this band can offer which is so identifiable and original without being original and delivering an album that will be tough to ignore. Exactly the album you want from these four reliable, adventurous, unpredictable but thoroughly excellent – A massive big up The Libertines and ‘Alls Quiet’ their perfect album for this moment in time. A band that it would seem to have found peace with who they are and how and where they fit in, and a sort of maturity (Libertines and maturity? Never) to change it up yet still be those lads full of piss and vinegar who know how to deliver their craft better than pretty much everyone else out of their genre. ‘All Quiet On The Easter Esplanade’ will prove to be a bit of a masterpiece, mark my words – Buy It!


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Author: Dom Daley

Fourteen new tracks from Pat Todd who seems to be immune from the dreaded writer’s block and just seems to be able to knock out album after album of the highest quality. This Cowpunk rock n roll has mastered the sound and energy to make great records – it’s not difficult to see how Eddy Spaghetty holds him in such high regard.

This Americana or Cowpunk rock n roll is poured into every album and with that formula, they seem to get better and better. As his career progresses Todd’s moulded his craft to suit his strengths, Mixing ’70s punk rock, country, blues, roots rock it’s all in here folks. But the magic formula is heart and soul you just can’t fake it if you want it to be authentic and Todd & his Rank Outsiders couldn’t be accused of that.

The lyrics of the 14-track album are heartfelt and honest. New Originals like ‘Why I Sing’, ‘The Company You Keep’ or ‘Victim Of Dedication’ are warm and comfortable – you know what you’re in for and Todd delivers in spades. Be it the Rankoutsiders or The Lazy Cowgirls this brand of Rock n Roll is heartwarming and full of energy, life-affirming energy

The cover version of “Tower of Song” by Leonard Cohen shows how you can own a tune and energise a song that the listener might not have seen coming, but when it does you know it’s done so well and a fine way to close off the album.

Todd is joined again by guitarist and founding Rankoutsider, Nick Alexander; long-time guitarist and vocalist Kevin Keller, who also takes over the mic on ‘You’re Gonna Loose It All’ (I know makes you sick – so much talent); Steven Vigh on bass and Walter Phelan on drums, the rhythm section, who are driving these songs with boundless energy and belief in the power of Rock and Roll. Amen and halleluiah, Rock and Roll is in safe hands and it sounds bloody great! Buy It!

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Author: Dom Daley

‘Oh Shit’ is the latest single from their forthcoming new album due in April listen here: TheLibertines.lnk.to/OhShit

pic Ed Cooke

Oh shit ,oh shit

Lets make some money

Just enough to get us by

The Libertines release a fabulous new single (quite possibly the most Libertines single ever!) on Wednesday 6th March. Entitled Oh Shit it is an earworm anthem for these economically challenging times and is taken from their eagerly awaited new album All Quiet On The Eastern Esplanade which hits the streets on April 5th.

Written by Carl Barat and Peter Doherty, Oh Shit is the fourthsingle to be lifted from All Quiet On The Eastern Esplanade, following the release of Run, Run, Run VIDEO, Night Of The Hunter VIDEO and Shiver VIDEO  You can preorder the new album here: TheLibertines.lnk.to/AQOTEEPR 

The Libertines’ UK/IRELAND tour all but sold out within hours of being announced – faster than any previous tours in their history – which nails the lie that no-one wants to see bands live anymore. To cater for the unprecedented demand, a third and final night has been added at Manchester’s Albert Hall on Saturday 9th November.

The full dates for the All Quiet On The Esplanade Tour are:

SEPTEMBER 

23rd MON Dublin  3Olympia Theatre SOLD OUT

24th TUE Belfast The Telegraph Building SOLD OUT

OCTOBER

3rd THU Birmingham O2 Academy SOLD OUT

4th FRI Norwich UEA SOLD OUT

5th SAT Cambridge  The Corn Exchange SOLD OUT

7th MON Cardiff Great Hall FEW TICKETS

8th TUE Bristol O2 Academy SOLD OUT

17th THU Glasgow Barrowland Ballroom SOLD OUT

18th FRI Glasgow  Barrowland Ballroom SOLD OUT

19th Sat Liverpool Mountford Hall SOLD OUT

21st Mon Nottingham Rock City SOLD OUT

22nd  TUE Leeds O2 Academy SOLD OUT

30th WED London Roundhouse FEW TICKETS

31st THU London Roundhouse SOLD OUT

NOVEMBER

1st FRI London Roundhouse FEW TICKETS

4th MON Sheffield The Octagon FEW TICKETS

5th TUE Newcastle NX SOLD OUT

7th THU Manchester Albert Hall SOLD OUT

8th FRI Manchester Albert Hall SOLD OUT

9th SAT Manchester Albert Hall TICKETS ON SALE 9AM 8TH MARCH

The Libertines will be playing the following in/out-store shows on the week of release of the new album with a special Q&A happening at Rough Trade East.

APRIL IN/OUT-STORES:

5th  FRI  Coventry HMV Empire

6th  SAT Birmingham Acoustic

Manchester Academy w/ Crash Records

8th MON Rough Trade East Q&A w/ Rough Trade

9th TUE Pryzm Kingston w/ Banquet Records

As previously announced The Libertines will headline ‘On The Beach Festival’ in Brighton on Sunday, July 28th.

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A ‘Live’ album from Gypsy Roller but also has bonus Demos / Outtakes. It’s not a band name I’ve heard from in quite a while way before the pandemic but it has to be said a proper throwback to when Glam meant Bolan Boogie and twin guitar attack. Gypsy Roller is essentially Gil Soliz and his vehicle for kicking out the jams.

What you effectively get is a couple of dozen songs with the first ten being a live performance from a proper Rock and Roll band who have it coursing through their veins. Just think the boogie and swagger of early Aerosmith and the street cred of Bon-era DC and you’re on the right path. Mix it up with the unmistakable street smarts of The Dolls and you might be in the right ballpark. The bad boy boogie of ‘City Of Angels’ messes about with the Noo Yawk sass of Lou Reed on ‘Waiting In Line’. These boys can obviously play and they’re quite happy to throw in some tightly woven jazzy breaks to compliment the groovy harder rock but it is clearly all about the music here and when you hit the demos you enter a world that indulges on 60s Kinks and some sleazy Stones on ‘She’s Got The Structure’.

Some of the demos double up which is cool to hear the difference in the recordings from some quite early on generic “live” demos to a much fuller production. ‘Whatcha gonna Do’ is Stonesy meets Primal Scream when they wanted to be Keith n Mick. The no-nonsense straight-up street vibe of ‘I Like It Like That’ is fantastic. There is even time to get a little laid back and sleazy on ‘Some Girls’ of course getting an LUV in somewhere is perfect something David Johannsen would be proud of. Don’t take my word for it Let the music do the talking and get onto Bandcamp for some previous recordings from Gypsy Roller you won’t regret it.

Get on it Here kids it’s a wonderful collection of songs from a very talented group of musicians.

Gil is ably supported by Ron Wesley on Lead guitar, Jonas Greene on Rhythm, Doug Reichard on Drums and Adam Bartell on bass Guitar and produced by Allan Davis. Check it out at the links.

Author: Dom Daley

It’s almost a year since I first set foot in The Cab, and it’s wonderful to see the team behind the place going from strength to strength and keeping the scene alive, it’s also a staggering 10 years since Christmas frontman Max Motherfucker first brought his band of deathpunk renegades over from Germany to play south Wales, as he is quick to remind us during his band’s headline set here tonight.

Where the hell does the time go eh? That’s why it’s perhaps always best to “live in the moment” as you’ll never know what’s around the corner. You might just be putting on your biggest show ever when Sick Of It All play for you this spring, or you might be just about to celebrate 15 years together as a band. Yup it’s all about the here and now folks and tonight is like a mini-Slugfest, but on tour, as four bands who have all played at south Wales’s finest DIY free festival share a stage at Newport’s finest DIY punk rock venue. Four bands, £6 entrance fee…bosh! How’s that for living in the now?

Kicking things off are The Setbacks from Bath and the five-piece fair rattle through their set finishing off with a riotous rendition of ‘Lulu’s Leaving’.  The healthy-sized crowd loving every minute of tonight’s starter for ten and I must admit it had been way too long since I last saw them live. Tidy!

That can’t be said of System Reset, however, as this popular combo seems to pop up wherever there’s a punk rock show occurring, and it shows in just how slick an outfit they have become. Tracks like opener ‘March’, ‘Anxiety’ and (still my favourite track by the band) ‘Fail Safe’ positively bounce along, containing almost as much spring in their step as frontman Stan, who just doesn’t stop. ‘Big Business’ is always how a Reset show ends and it’s a middle finger to the corporate world we all live in. Talking of which, rumour has it that Sutton and Shov from the Reset have got the original Trigger McPoopshute line up back together for one last hurrah! Perhaps a co-headline tour with Terry & The Idiots awaits, or maybe it’ll be Rebellion 2025?

A band that I feel have long since warranted a slot at Rebellion are Newport’s Deathtraps. Now a full year into being a quartet the band are currently recording album number five, and if tonight is anything to go by it’s going to be their most ferocious slab of wax yet. ‘Red Eyes And Black Kisses’, Too Much is Never Enough’ and ‘Cool Kids’ are all present and correct from the old trio days but it’s the new cuts like (please note I may have these titles slightly incorrect) ‘You’re The One’ and ‘Right Thing’ that positively hammer home why Deathtraps in this new expanded format truly are a mighty force to be reckoned with. 

It’s going to take a special kind of band to top the sonic fury of Deathtraps and thankfully Christmas (playing on a leap year day too, just to totally mess with my OCD mind) are just that band. Frontman Max has his shirt off and is in our faces before ‘Wolfpack’ has even had a chance to howl and throughout the band’s 20 odd song set he’s constantly in and out of the crowd cajoling those brave enough to stand in front of him to sing along with the band’s incendiary back catalogue. He’s such a blur of energy that even the Cab’s normally Tonka truck strong vocal PA (this is a set up that withstood Clobber and Conservative Military Image on the same bill remember) gives up the ghost just ahead of ‘Appetite for Selfdestruction’ and with a shorter microphone cable attached and Max finally partially tethered the likes of ‘Hot Nights in Saint Vandal’ ‘Nothing But  A Handjob’ and the immense ‘Candy Me’ all sound like firecrackers in the head. There’s just enough time for a run through of Turbonegro’s ‘Ride With Us’ before ‘Go Hard or Go Home’ sends me out into the cold night air loaded up on band merch, recognising the fact that any group that has driven for 15 hours and passed through 6 countries to get to play for you fully deserves our support.

“Oh I wish it could be Christmas every day…..”

Author: Johnny Hayward

Life’s full of surprises. My teenage self wouldn’t have believed that in 2024 I would be reviewing a new album by One The Juggler. Granted, 2020’s ‘The Ocean Man’ was a welcome return after the ‘Destination Planet Blue’ compilation. There were new, joyous tunes, but while ‘Memoir Days’ might occasionally be reminiscing of the pomp and ambition of youth, it holds together better as an album.

‘We Love It All’ is really an intro, full of optimism and positivity, leading into ‘Talking To Ourselves’. This song, along with lead track ‘Jennifer Heaven’, are the natural successors to ‘Nearly A Sin’; the mix of acoustic guitar and Ronno styled electric, with a touch of Bolan melodies. Yes, the Bowie influences are still here, but it’s the quality of songwriting that was always the band’s strength. Their debut was full of songs they’d already honed live, like many bands. ‘Memoir Days’ sounds like the true follow up album, with the title track urging “be sure to write it all down now, while it’s still fresh in your mind”.

Rokko/Sham’s vocals are as distinctive as ever, and a joy to hear. And with Jerry, he has crafted a fine set of songs here, worthy of the name One The Juggler. I regularly bore people with my enthusiasm for ‘Nearly A Sin’, but everyone I’ve recommended it to has loved it.

‘The Revolution’s On Your Phone’ is like a long-lost Mott classic, majestic stuff indeed.

‘Sylvia Strange’ is as catchy as the title deserves to be, a swoonsome slice of pop,  while ‘When We Get Home’ ups the pomp, an instant hook, like Suede’s dubious uncles who still know a trick or two. This one’s on replay.

‘Andy’s Bar’ has a similar melancholy to ‘(O No) You’re Not The Same’, lyrically I think Brel would approve, and the acoustic touches are beautiful. ‘Into The Blue Eternity’ is a bittersweet end. “Between the dishes and the laundry, her mind is planning an escape…”

Influences aside, this sounds like a One The Juggler album, and it’s all the better for it. Welcome to their world. It will improve yours.

Author: Martin Chamarette

True Sounds of Liberty started causing trouble way back in 1978 and the birth of punk rock/hardcore in Los Angeles. Playing with the fury of their hardcore contemporaries but with a goth rock/New Romantic image and sharp melodies.

T.S.O.L. quickly got a reputation as the band stood pretty much alone and were more than happy to furrow lone paths into different styles something which they’ve done right up to the present and certainly under Jack Grishams leadership.

This is the bands 12th long-player, and probably their most diverse and varied album to date. Still with the throbbing blackened heart they had when they kicked off in this scene but with much wiser more savvy heads. The band has released a handful of singles recently with the help of Paul Roessler at Kitten Robot Studio.

Jack Grisham has his trusty sidekicks, guitarist Ron Emory and bassist Mike Roche (all from the band’s first line-up), they are joined by longtime keyboardist Greg Kuehn and Antonio Hernandez on drums. and armed with twelve brand new tunes, well, when I say brand new tunes I mean new tunes to T.S.O.L. Eight original, and Four covers. Now you might think Four Covers is a bit cheeky but when you dig into them and hear how they take them on you’ll be delighted they bothered and you did as well.

The album’s opening track is a particularly punchy affair entitled ‘Low-Low-Low’, it’s vibrant and has a really bright and energetic production that helps motor the song along and once Jack’s distinguished vocal enters the fray there is a comfortable ease around proceedings. Ron’s guitar is wholesome and sharp just like you’d hoped it would be. Emery is one of those players who has a wonderful touch and tone and can whip up a hurricane through his amp when he needs to and can make you sit up and pay attention much like Brian James. That magical feeling when a band you love hits your ears with new music and it just takes off, well, thats ‘Low Low Low’ right there thundering along its a great opener.

Now I am one of those people who absolutely loved ‘The Trigger Complex’ and happen to think it contained some of the band’s finest material period. Not since ‘Code Blue’ or ‘Abolish Government’ I mean full stop ‘Why Can’t We Do It Again’ was majestic as was ‘Nothing Ever Lasts’ Well this album follows on with that strength of songwriting that I guess a youthful wild and reckless T.S.O.L. couldn’t have delivered and thats cool by me. I did raise an eyebrow when the band threw out the first cover. The Rhythm Of Cruelty’ from Magazine but to their credit its a killer version and they totally own it.

By track three the first curveball is thrown and after a few plays I get it and it makes me smile that Jack and fellow legend Keith Morris join forces on a raucous take on ‘Sweet Transvestite’ is undertaken. It’s epic and is perfectly camp as Jack turns in a spectacular performance alongside Morris. Now, thats how to do a cover.

The album coasts along with some vibrant and uptempo songs with Grisham sounding in fine form with some great melodies and choruses like ‘Never Go Home’. ‘Nothings Ever Right’ has a real earworm in the call back to Jacks barbs in the first verse but the energy thrown out by the band is fantastic. ic. ‘1 Thing’ originally by Amerie is a heaving beast with some great BVs and a huge guitar sound from Emery. ‘The Way You Groove’ and the infectious ‘Swimming’ are deep cuts of real quality particularly ‘Swimming’ built around a really good Ron Emery guitar riff but the subtle keys and handclaps take it somewhere else not to mention the thumping rhythm section who to be fair play a blinder throughout the record stoking the fire in the engine room.

Theres magic in these grooves and it fills my heart with joy that T.S.O.L. are in the mood to deliver such a fantastic album on the back of their documentary and live shows last year. It’s never too late to get into them if you’re not already a fan and this is a blindingly good record to start and maybe work your way backwards.

But wait there’s more. Before the finale, there’s a beautiful rendition of ‘What A Wonderful World’ complete with strings and piano to accompany Grisham at his crooning best. I hold my hands up when I first saw the track on the record I was prepared to close my eyes and hold my nose but by the time I got to it, it was like a great deep breath before signing off with ‘Can You Hear Me’ which is a wholesome slow burner like a wide screen Bowie-esque laid back smokey late-night ballad, yup I did say that and it’s like Jack always told us he loves his Motown and this fits right in the punkers will vomit but fuck em this is T.S.O.L. and they do what they want. Still taking risks, never playing it safe, and delivering a stunning album. Most definitely one of the albums of 2024 and it’s only March.

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Author: Dom Daley

Leeds noisenicks The Yalla Yallas follow up their 2021 album ‘What It Means To Be Human’ with a thought-provoking 6th studio album entitled ‘A World At The End Of The World’. Self-produced and recorded at Loom studios in West Yorkshire, we join singer/songwriter and main protagonist Rob Galloway on a retrospective trip through the cosmos where he questions our whole existence, searches to find out what is real, declares undying love to at least one girl, and ends up hanging out with Elvis, or something, before the end of the world.

With an album title that gives a ray of hope in spite the impending doom, first single ‘Atomic Clock’ offers a ‘no fucks given’ approach, a welcome return to the uncompromising, high energy rock n’ roll the band are known for. But the interesting thing about this album is that The Yalla Yallas throw about some unexpected curve balls through the 9 songs on offer, and it starts right from the word go.

Opener ‘Dream Out Loud (Parts I,II and III)’ is a 5-minute plus, slow burning epic affair full of atmospherics and devious intentions. It builds on a sole, picked acoustic guitar and Rob’s lonesome vocal. A sound that immediately draws the listener in, demanding their full attention. The ebb and flow create cinematic vibes, whether it be the Slash-like guitar noodling from Will Grinder or the chilled outro, full of spacey, sound effects. It sets the scene for a journey of sorts.

Elsewhere, the Bad Seeds influenced ‘Down At The Zoo’ is a 12-bar blues anthem for outcasts and socials rejects. An instantly catchy hook, regimental beats and a laid back but confident swagger make it an early highlight. Some say it’s grim up North, but the band somehow manage to channel Ennio Morricone vibes creating their own West Yorkshire spaghetti western with ‘Drive Me Out Of Town’.

The likes of ‘Reset’ and ‘Hey Brian!’ are more in tune with what we have come to expect from The Yalla Yallas. Full of driving beats, rock guitars and a spoken word extract courtesy of The Rebel Poet (David Holmes), ‘Reset’ is the sound of a band on a charge, and ‘Hey Brian!’ is a low-slung rock n’ roll affair with Rob doing his best Bobbie Gillespie over a shoutathon of a chorus.

Taking things right down with a tinkling of the ivories, acoustic guitars and brushes on skins, is the delicate sounds of ‘Barcelona (Absolution)’. Cinematic in its approach and delivery, it’s a song that is as instant as it is fresh sounding. With a well thought out structure, a less is more approach and a cool outro hook with a spoken word diatribe Patti Smith would be proud of, it’s an album highlight for me.

With any Yalla Yallas album there’s gotta be a radio friendly potential single, and ‘(Baby Baby) I Love You’ is ‘AWATEOTW’s hidden gem. An upbeat song full of joy and positivity with an earworm of a chorus. Imagine the sound of early U2 with Steve Jones cranking out the guitars and you might get close.

The raucous punk n’ roll of ‘Elvis (You Gotta Shake)’ finishes things up nicely with cool bass runs, neat licks and added “uh-huh’s” for good measure.

‘A World At The End Of The World’ is a strong return from a Northern band that are well known for their high-energy, sweat-drenched live shows. Rob and his band of brothers have created an album that is raw and ramshackle and delivered from the heart. It sees the band challenge themselves as songwriters to step outside of their comfort zone and create a diverse sounding set of songs with themes of escapism and searching for new horizons. It’s good to have them back and look forward to catching these songs live in the near future.

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Authpr: Ben Hughes

Six of one and almost half a dozen of the other. Man I love a good split LP, Ghost Highway is good at delivering split records be it 7″ or 12″ they tend to get it right when they pick bands to split. First up one of our favourites at RPMHQ has to be Poison Boys not content with a new record of all their early singles in one convenient record they’re hitting Spain for a quick tour and it makes sense to hook up with one of the best labels dishing out Rock n Roll on the continent in Ghost Highway who’ve pulled in six tunes from Poison Boys being five originals and one from filthy rock n rollas Jonesy from outta Canada.

Of the original tunes they’ve included the most excellent ‘Knocked Down Again’ a tune RPM were pleased to have premiered for the band late last year alongside the opener ‘The Searcher’ with its bruising bovver boy punch rocker. The band are delivering that sleazy Johnny Thunders meets Toilet Boys Rock with plenty of attitude as good if not better than anyone else out there at the moment. The harmonica honkin down n dirty ‘Sleaze City’ is pure 100% Punk n Roll it’s like the dirtiest of early Aerosmith being kicked around the Lower East Side by some nasty punks and the wandering gob iron mixed with that barroom piano is the best night out in one three minute rock n roll song I’ve had the privilege of for a while.

By the time you reach their take on Jonesys ‘Messin Around’ you should get the picture for what these boys are about. truly fantastic, reckless rock n roll and taking an already top tune and owning it isn’t something anyone can do so this makes it top-notch and a winner every time it bursts out of the speakers.

Flip this bad boy over and enter Jonesy and their good time filthy Rock n Roll. ‘8 Track Mind’ begins with a lounge laid-back set of smooth keys and handclaps and then the party begins and builds up slowly and smoothly to the wonderful guitar solo. Not what I was expecting at all but hey it’s a touch of class. Then the shots get downed and someone let the gatecrashers in and the sleazy ‘Down’ turns the Amps up but not to a wrecking ball more a measured scarface coolness as Jonesy ease themselves into this split.

They then offer up their take on the Poison Boys ‘Can’t Get You Out’ and now were cooking. A class tune gets the Jonesy treatment like a proper yob job on those gang vocals and hey presto it’s like a long-lost Hanoi Rocks tune. Marvellous.

‘Only Shams’ is a beast of a lick before heading off like one of those Toilet Boys flaming guitars. Two very different bands doing their thing to a wonderful level and both offering the very best, say two sides of the same coin. It would be a split decision if it were a cage fight but I’d expect them both to fight dirty. If you’ve never heard either band now is the time to get involved and jump on board you won’t be disappointed in the slightest if you are I’d check for a pulse because you might just be dead. Buy It! Banger!

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