THE MURDER CAPITAL: When I Have Fears.

16 08 2019

Image result for the murder capital when i have fears

 

Some find beauty in things like flowers, sickly sweet gestures and the like. Others want the less conventional type. I’m with them. Within this darker side of beauty is this vulnerability and honesty that is found nowhere else. It makes us curious, and it can heal. I don’t want to get too personal, but I recently lost a friend. They took their own life and of course those left behind are constantly thinking “What if I did this…what if I said…” anything, everything runs through your mind. Every fucking day. It is so permanent, it is so final. There’s no comfort, so all you can do is think about them. What used to never touch you can cause you to cry at a drop of a hat. I’m too sensitive, but I won’t change that. Music has been something I’ve always leaned on, but the past few weeks I’ve not really paid much attention, I’ve not wanted to listen to anything at all let alone write about it. That was until, today.

The Murder Capital are one of the most brutally honest bands around. They are fearless, exposed and powerful with their music. What they have done with When I Have Fears is something truly special. It’s a record that gives you comfort, it will be scary and you feel every single word beautifully poured out in this hypnotising record. Is it the record of the year? Well, if you’re into making lists then it definitely is. I can just give you the straight up fact that it is. These Dublin lads show us how to be brutal in the most beautiful way possible, and James’ vocals will tear you apart but will also make you feel less alone, and vulgar.

 

 

When I Have Fears is a security blanket. It is safe yet unsafe. It will break you, then fix you. You’ll heal, then fall apart again. It is every emotion physically and mentally possible. James unleashes these hard-hitting lyrics in ways no one else could do. He spews them out as if he is ridding his body of venom and I am completely in love with it. I love the sheer passion that The Murder Capital have, and for me, with this record they have truly let us in on things others are afraid to dive into.

More Is Less is one of those songs that you just know will electrify their live shows. The way in which the line, “If I gave you what you wanted, you’d never be full” is brimming with this exceptional rage that just makes you feel so connected to the band. There is absolutely no denying just how phenomenal The Murder Capital are, and with this record they have done something that you don’t get from a lot of debut records. This is a band that WILL be heard- you simply cannot silence a band like this, and why on earth would you even want to?

There is something mournful about this record, and maybe it could be down to personal loss within the band whilst recording- either way, there is so much comfort in this record. For me, it couldn’t have come at a better time. We sometimes need something bigger than us to cope, for me it is music. For me it The Murder Capital. As the rain pours from the grey sky here in Manchester today, I can’t think of a better place to completely and utterly devote myself to listening to this record to. When I Have Fears is the kind of record I could write about constantly. It’s also a record I know I am going to find new things to be in awe of and fall in love with every single time I listen to (which will obviously be daily.)

Although I have made no comparisons here, I’d like to add that When I Have Fears reminds me of discovering The Birthday Party for the first time, and to then become further obsessed with Nick Cave and The Bad Seeds. Poetic darkness and eternal wonder in the lyrics and music- it’s something I cannot get enough of. Every song on this record is easy to be obsessed with. I cannot get enough of Feeling Fades. Don’t Cling To Life is easy to just cherish and lose yourself in. Love, Love, Love closes the record and just makes you want to start the record all over again. Make it never-ending. Just keep this phenomenal record on repeat.

 

 

When I Have Fears captures every feeling we are conditioned to ignore or be scared of. The Murder Capital bring you in to feel every ugly feeling possible, and to own it. Let them break your heart and fix you with every listen.

Advertisements




BROKEN BRIDGE.

11 08 2019

BB

 

Sometimes finding the will to write about music slips from me. I stare at the keyboard hoping something comes out. I’ve hit delete many times recently over anything I’ve written. But, I seem to have found some inspiration from a band from Geneva called Broken Bridge.

Broken Bridge have a heavy, Garage Rock sound that is found in my favourites Table Scraps. They just make you want to trash shit, start a band, stir up some trouble. Anything, everything. They really smack you in the kisser with their exceptional sound. They are one of the best bands around right now, and are probably the best band from Geneva right now also.

 

 

So far up on their bandcamp page is a Live From Geneva release. These live versions of their songs show you just how exceptional they are, and how they play like a band who were sent here to just deafen us with their magnificent sound. The three of them (although the recordings on bandcamp are from when they were a duo, or they could be a duo now? I don’t know!) just take you some really wild place with their sound. They have a typical Garage Rock sound, but there is something super slick about them. Honestly, if I didn’t know I’d have assumed that they were from the 60s. They have bits of The Gruesomes in them, bits of Count Five, bits of The Vagrants in their sound but they add something else. Their song Sugar has like a sped up feel of The Doors which I love. It’s a brilliant song, and to be honest with you- Broken Bridge should be huge. They are brilliant musicians who are utterly cool and fearless with their sound. For me, I’m putting them up there with my favourite French band, Dr Chan. Both bands have this beautiful energy and soul within their sound. You can’t get enough of it.

Broken Bridge aren’t afraid to give us that raw, lo-fi sound. That fuzzy sound that has the potential to burst your eardrums if played at the right volume. Everything about their sound has this elegant yet brutal tone to it. They aren’t afraid to be gnarly and raw, but at the same time have this clear and crisp sound that you just want to hear 24/7. For me, it’s heavenly. I love how they can truly move you, and how they make you feel like you’re falling in love with all those sacred music moments all over again. Get Away and Worst Shadows are two of the songs that you just need to blast as loud as possible, and really get how brilliant they are. Broken Bridge are such an exciting band to listen to, and to just really invest in.

With just a live release up on their bandcamp page, it is enough for me to know that are most certainly a band to watch. I really hope they come to the UK soon because they deserve to just take over the world in their own slick way. They remind me ever so slightly of The Pretty Things and I think this is evident on Don’t Go To The River which sounds like it has nods to Midnight To Six Man. Broken Bridge have a really together sound, and you can’t help but think you are listening to a band that have been around for decades.

 

 

If you catch them live, please go see them. Then demand they do a UK tour. Until then, play their music as loud as you can, watch their music videos and just fall madly in love with them like I have.





SUN SLAYERS.

31 07 2019

a3984282121_10

 

The bio for Sun Slayers reads, “Lo-fi Garage Rock that misses the beach” and to be honest, it’s pretty accurate. They are easily one of the most exciting bands around not just from Nottingham, but in the UK as a whole. They have this brilliant heavy sound that makes you want to just immerse yourself in everything they give you. I could easily sum up how great they are in a paragraph, but they deserve way more than that.

Sun Slayers have this sound that is found in say, Keep On Your Mean Side by The Kills. The heaviness that The Kills brought to that record is found in Sun Slayers new EP, Not Alone which was recorded on a TPS-L2 Sony Walkman, which is pretty cool. I love how Sun Slayer have this fearless approach, and on this EP they truly take you some place magical. I remember when I first heard Birmingham’s finest, Table Scraps and I’m getting the same feeling from listening to Sun Slayers. There is something really special about their sound, and how they aren’t afraid to posses a heavy sound. It’s a gorgeous EP that you simply cannot get enough of.

 

 

My Mistake is just over 5 minutes, and it has this wonderful yet bleak tone to the lyrics. It is dark, but it is beautifully put together. The vocals are soft, but once the guitar kicks in it brings this almost sorrowful sound. It’s so far, my favourite song I’ve heard by them. It is so sad and so fragile, but there’s this weight to it that really hits you in the gut. I’m all for songs that hit you right in the pit of your stomach. I love how the guitar takes on a fuzzy kind of sound when the chorus kicks in. In some ways, it reminds me of the Darklands record by The Jesus And Mary Chain. There’s also quite a Bluesy feel to this song, and it appears throughout a few of the songs on the EP. They may have missed the beach, but they’ve delved into something else with their sound.

I’m not quite sure how long they’ve been making music together for, but this solid sound is something to truly admire. They sound like they’ve been together forever, but time doesn’t mean a thing- they just sound phenomenal. I truly hope they become a band that people cannot get enough of. I have a feeling that their live shows are probably wild too. This is the kind of sound I love to get lost in, and I love where Sun Slayers take you with their music. You just want it to wrap you up and throw you into the unknown. Ever element of their sound is a reminder as to why I love music so much, and why I feel I need to write about what I’ve heard.

The EP ends on the glorious, Braindead. The echoing of the “I can’t feel anything at all” is so great. It’s the kind of song that you just know when they do it live, that part of the song is going to be screamed back. A simple phrase, yet easy to relate to. Sun Slayers not only have a brilliant band name, but they have this sound that makes you wish you were in their band making this noise with them. I love how they make you want more and more from them. This EP may have only just come out, but I am so excited to hear what else they do and of course, for them to tour.

 

 

If you like your music loud with a Lo-fi bite to it, then you’re going to fall in love with Sun Slayers, quite easily and obsessively too. Get lost in their sound, and let it consume you in the most wonderful way imaginable.





NIGHT SHADES: Dead Nerves/The Desert.

16 07 2019

nightshades

 

 

Today I woke up to see that Night Shades had announced a new release, and I knew I was going to have a good day (I also had the day off work so that’s a plus *note- I love my job, but I do like to sleep!) Night Shades are making the kind of music I’d love to make if I was in a band. They are creepy and wild; they are just a phenomenal band that I cannot get enough of, and knowing that there’s a new release coming real soon is just great.

I’m going to give you a little breakdown into the songs- there’s only three so hopefully you’ll stick with this. It’ll be worth it, trust me.

DEAD NERVES: The first track on the record, and as Shaun counts in the band you get a sense of just how intense this song is going to be. He has SUCH a distinctive voice, and it’s the kind of voice you want to hear when you need music to just get your heart beating a little faster. The urgency on this song is exceptional, and I think for me, a large part of this is Niall’s drumming. Niall is a great drummer, and he brings this urgency to Night Shades that is backed up by Clare, Shaun and Vince on this song in particular. I guess you could sum it all up quite easily by saying Night Shades consist of some of the best musicians around. There is this bite to Dead Nerves that makes you feel like you’re the toughest person around. I love music that gives you this energy, and Dead Nerves definitely gives that feeling. It’s a real rowdy song that feels like a bar fight. If you’ve never listened to Night Shades before, this has got to be the one that wins you over.

KATIPO: To soothe your bones a little bit, Katipo is a beautiful instrumental moment on the record. Sure I love their loud and rowdy songs, but this instrumental is so gorgeous. It is delicate in some parts, but it picks up. The song twists and turns, and takes you on this trip. You stay on edge as you listen to it. One thing I adore about Night Shades is their effortless way to keep you on edge. As someone who has anxiety and can have a panic attack when I least expect it/probably at inappropriate times, Night Shades give you this positive anxiety- you’re on edge from excitement with their music. You know something is going to happen, and the butterflies are brewing in your belly- it kicks in, and all these euphoric moments occur. That’s, for me, one of the best ways I can sum up Night Shades and although there are no vocals on Katipo, it perfectly sums that feeling on edge feeling.

 

 

The Desert:  Hello song of the year! Clare and Shaun’s vocals on this are insane. Everything about this song oozes a real creepy feel and I love it. It’s like hearing The Cramps for the first time. The first time I ever heard The Cramps, it changed my life forever and I was in awe of every tiny detail. Night Shades give you that same feeling. You’re hearing something really incredible, and it just moves you in a range of ways. The way they deliver the urgency on The Desert is ridiculous, and it’s the kind of song that you know is going to be magical when they do it live. It’s a song that just makes you fall in love with them all over again. We had the instrumental in the middle, and we are smacked right in the face with The Desert. Although it ends on this song, it just makes you play it all over again. But, you’re going to have to wait until 26th July to do this.

This 3-track record was recorded live, and I think that adds some romanticism to it. The songs are perfect, loud, tender and raw. They will make you move and by no means will they make you want to rest. Night Shades make the kind of music that would fit perfectly in a eerie horror film, or a thriller. Something that messes with your head, for sure.

The launch party for the record will of course be held at The Shacklewell Arms on the 26th July. There’s no other venue that can do their sound justice nor can any other venue sum up the feel of the band. You can pre-order the record on their bandcamp page here. It’s going to be on hot pink vinyl, and will be released via El Beasto Records.

Buy it, play it loud and feel like the toughest motherfucker around.





GHUM: The Castle Hotel, Manchester. 15th July 2019.

15 07 2019

ghum

 

Of all the gigs I’ve ever been to, the show tonight was the hottest and most sweatiest. A tiny venue with no air con but who cares? One of the most exciting bands around played here tonight, and it was something truly special.

Their debut EP came out a couple of weeks ago, and it is one of the most remarkable and gorgeous records of the year. It is a euphoric dream of a record, and has the most intense sounds and ethereal feelings within the songs. It is perfect; so how does it come across live?  Divine. Absolutely divine.

Before I get into their more known songs, they played a new one called California which I am obsessed with! I wish it was on The Coldest Fire, but it definitely proves that they are pretty much the best band around in this country. For me, I got the same feeling I did when I first heard TwoFiftyFour and Warpaint years and years ago. They have that same dark yet euphoric feel to their sound.

 

 

Their live show is something else. This was their first time that they had played Manchester, and it honestly felt like a band that were “coming home” in a way. Everyone was just having the best time, even if it felt like we were in a sauna. For a band that have put out their debut EP, they just make you feel like they’ve been around forever. They are so sure of their sound, and that just makes them even more inspiring.

I loved finally seeing 1000 Men and Saturn. These are two songs I’ve had on repeat more than usual, and the live versions of these songs are truly mind-blowing. GHUM are band that you cannot help but fall in love with from your very first listen. They have something about them that just sucks you in, and nothing else comes close to it. They have this colossal sound and presence that you know means that this will probably be one of the last times they play such a small venue. They played the best venue in the world over the weekend, The Shacklewell Arms and honestly, it is the best venue for a band like this. But tonight at The Castle Hotel was something else. It isn’t a big venue, and it has a proper intimate feel to it. A rare treat to have such a band play here, and I think it has the potential to be one of those shows that in decades from now, you’ll be gloating that you were there. Like when the Sex Pistols played the Lesser Free Trade Hall.

The sheer passion in the way they play and deliver these songs is truly astounding and hugely inspiring- they are effortlessly haunting with their sound, and you just want it to consume you. Everything about GHUM just leaves you in awe. You cannot help but feel that you were part of something really special tonight. I hope it is one of those shows that this city talks about for years to come. The crowd were equally as perfect. It’s been known that Manchester crowds are the best, and tonight they really did prove that theory correct.

I think Get Up was the song that really got everyone going. I love how the song vocally is delicate, then the hook comes in and just smacks you in the face. There’s honestly no reason as to why GHUM won’t become massive and win over thousands, and thousands more fans. They are a band that have you hooked immediately and tonight, they fully exposed that notion in ways I’ve never seen a band do before.

 

 

For me, this show is one that will stick with me. When they play bigger venues, this show will still go down as being one of my favourites. The venue may have been a sweat-fest, but it didn’t matter because we were in the presence of one of the best bands around who will undoubtedly go and take over the world.





ISSUE: Cross The Line.

14 07 2019

issue cover

 

 

If you’re looking for a band that sound like KRAUT mixed with VOID, then you’ll find it in Paris’s finest Punk band, ISSUE. One of the greatest guitarists of all time are in the band also (Charlie from Crocodiles, of course!) Cross The Line, their debut record, came out on Friday and let me tell you, it’s obnoxiously loud and really cleanses the soul.

Cross The Line is a proper rowdy record. Every single song, all nine of them, will blow your mind and eardrums in 16 quick minutes. The record is over far too soon, but there is no harm in playing it all over again, and again. And again. It’s record to trash shit to, it’s a record to just go completely wild to. It’s everything you want from a raw Punk record. Play it as loud as you can, then try a bit louder. Only a couple of the songs are over the 2 minute mark- how it should be done with this kind of music. The songs are full of this rambunctious energy that makes you want to just play it so loud, and throw shit out of the window. I mean, maybe don’t do that but you get what I mean. They have this ability to make you feel like you are right at their show taking it all in with elbows hitting you in the face and lukewarm beer being thrown about.

 

 

This is definitely one of the most enjoyable and out-there Punk records I’ve heard in a long time, and it just makes you feel like you’re experiencing bands like KRAUT for the first time. As soon as I heard this record, I automatically likened it to An Adjustment To Society by KRAUT (which is one of the greatest records ever made.) The same level of excellence is there, and I can’t get enough of it. By no means am I comparing the bands in a lazy way. I’m just holding them up as highly as each other because they are fucking incredible.

25 and Spit Mask are currently my favourite songs on the record, but my mind does change quite a bit. I’ve found that the record sounds best if you play it in order but the thing is, when you play it in no particular order you still get that “OH SHIT!” feel- like it’s hitting you for the first time. There is so much to love about this record. The production is perfect; the sound is something that’s been well thought out and you can definitely hear how much effort has gone into creating something so powerful. Mirror is a song that is meant to be play a hell of a lot, and definitely at a deafening volume. It’s a record that makes you want to start your own Punk band or just immerse yourself in as much live music as possible.

In terms of touring, I have no idea where they are going but if someone could get them to the UK that would be really much appreciated by me. They definitely have a sound that is made to be heard live. I love how the songs feel like an animal that’s been trapped for years, and is now being released into the wild. It has this brilliant untameable sound that I adore so much. In the best way possible, this record is so chaotic and brutal. I can’t get enough of it, and songs like  I Surrender just annihilate your eardrums in the most perfect way.

 

 

Cross The Line is out now via Third Coming Records; and the record artwork is by Nicky Rat.





HAXON.

13 07 2019

 

HAXON

 

 

When I left London early last year, I know I was going to miss something in particular. I wasn’t going to miss the city at all, but I was going to miss my favourite venue ever- The Shacklewell Arms. I’ve seen some of the best gigs of my life there. I’ve seen TwoFiftyFour play to about 10 of us for an acoustic show, I’ve seen L.A Witch and Tall Juan’s first ever UK shows there. But I’ve missed out. I’ve missed out on seeing a whole bunch of bands, and I’m going to write about one of the most exciting London based bands around (aside from GHUM who are playing The Shack tonight, but I’m seeing them on Monday so it’s alright!) HAXON. Remember the name. HAXON make music to terrify you. Ready?

HAXON have members of bands I LOVE (Lovers Club and Night Shades.) If you’re looking for the coolest band around, then look no further than HAXON. They played The Shack last night, which is a venue made for bands like this. They sound like The Cramps mixed with Screaming Lord Sutch and The Birthday Party. Basically, fucking weird and absolutely off the wall in the best way imaginable. The kind of music you’d hear in a Vincent Price film. Perfect. They are a band that just need to be played really loud so you terrify your neighbours, In my apartment block, we’ve got some really annoying neighbours so for me, HAXON are the ideal band to use to drown out their noise.

 

 

If you’re looking for a band to blow you away and to leave you covered in goose bumps, and I don’t mean goose bumps just for the reason of them being brilliant. I mean for them scaring you- then you need HAXON in your life. You need to just play them, and go crazy to the songs. The songs sound like a mad-man rambling, and I love that. I love how possessed Alec’s vocals are. He’s easily one of my favourite singers of late, and with HAXON he really pushes his vocals and gives us something that is so insane and powerful. The songs will make you move in all kinds of ways. It’s just perfect.

 

Their debut EP, Haxoff, came out in May. It consists of 5 songs that will leave you salivating for more, and more. If you have seen them live, then I can only assume that it was one of the best shows you’ve ever been to. However, if anyone would like to bring them up here to Manchester- I’d really appreciate that! The EP is nothing short of stunning. It sounds like nothing else, and I truly mean that. I know I mentioned The Cramps, The Birthday Party and Screaming Lord Sutch earlier, but this EP is truly something else.  There is something about it that will freak you out, but at the same time you’ll just be beautifully overwhelmed by what you are hearing. Sometimes I’ll hear a band, and think “this is why I still write about music, this is why I love music.” For me, I can happily add Haxon to that list. With just one EP they have definitely left their mark, and I do hope that there is a lot more to come from them because 5 songs just isn’t enough.

I’m A Tree is like a drunken rambling, and I absolutely love it. I love how manic and ferocious it is. I love how it twists and turns, then slides into Lucky John which has the same tone to it. It’s just an excellent EP that will make you want to make your own noise, it’ll make you want to down a bottle of Bourbon in a saloon bar and cause a fight. It’s got this infectious rage to it, that I just cannot get enough of. It’s everything I want from music, and more. They should be hugely proud of what they have created here, because it is out of this world.

 

 

It’s a real sleazy and seductive EP that’ll make you feel a bit dirty and in the need of a shower after listening- and that’s always a great thing. Honestly, if you get the chance to see them, please go. Let the music take you over, let it freak you the hell out and let it put everything you’ve ever known to shame.