STEAL SHIT DO DRUGS.

26 02 2017

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What’s in a name? Nothing? Everything? Something? Who cares! Steal Shit Do Drugs (SSDD if you like censorship!) are one of the most exciting bands around, and they are currently a couple days into a month long tour of the UK and Europe. They’re playing some neat sweaty venues, which is perfect for their brilliant degenerate sound.

I think they’ve only been around for maybe 2 years and I think last year was when their first record came out. I could be wrong though. The record consists of 11 in your face Punk/Garage Rock songs that are made to be screamed back at the band out of fury and love. Find your passion and yell. I’ve read nothing about Steal Shit Do Drugs, so I have no idea who they are being compared to. It’s lazy to make any comparisons, so I’ll stay away from that. But in all honesty, I can’t really think of anyone that they sound like. They sound like a band from the Punk era but they also sound like a band that are slightly ahead of everyone else right now. We need more rowdy sounds in our ears to unleash the frustrations of daily life, and Steal Shit Do Drugs are the best band to do it to.

I don’t know what the Seattle music scene is like, but I’m going to declare Steal Shit Do Drugs as the best band from there. It’s not really a bold statement, more like an honest one. But, it’s just my opinion and that’s never counted for much. I love how their sound can just capture the true hell of a daily routine that eats at you, surrounded in a place that you are desperate to get out of. You’re in a version of hell that others would probably be okay with, but it’s your hell and this is the comforting soundtrack to it. I can only imagine that their live shows portray this in a fantastic way. They strike me as a band that you’ve just GOT to see live to really dig the sound.

Lead singer, Kennedy has this glorious charm that comes across beautifully on record and he allows you to imagine him strutting about on stage. Getting in the face of the crowd and screaming the words at them, just waiting for someone to scream them back at him. There’s a real urgency to this sound, and they are band that just need to be heard. There’s simply no denying how great Steal Shit Do Drugs are, and I’m pretty sure this month long tour of the UK and Europe is going to win a number of people over

Organdie is my favourite track so far. It’s a real loud number that echoes sounds of The Stooges in the best way imaginable. It’s got a real dirty Punk sound, it’s the kind of Punk that shocked parents like the Dead Boys and The Stooges. It’s flamboyant and it’s in your face. There are quiet moments and all of a sudden the last 2 minutes of the song are just a massive yelp-fest. It’s brilliant! I can’t get enough of it. I think it’s the one that’s going to really get the crowd going at their shows, if they play it,  of course.

They’re the kind of band that you’d want to tour with, that you’d want to go record shopping with, hang out with, join their band and the kind of band you MUST go see live at any given chance. Buy the music, play loud, learn the words and yell with them as loud as you can.





DR CHAN: Southside Suicide.

23 02 2017

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Last night I wrote about how much I love Dr Chan and how excited I am for their new record, Southside Suicide which comes out tomorrow on Stolen Body Records. I’m going to attempt to now write about why it is one of the finest records around and why if, you’re into making lists, it should top your Records of the Year list come December.

I tried to listen to it at work but I realised something would lose my attention and I didn’t want it to be Dr Chan. Within first listen I feel like I am at one of their shows or watching them rehearse in some cramped room. It’s definitely not an overproduced record nor is it one that sounds like they’ve tried too hard to sound a certain way. It sounds like a very honest and brutal record that stems from frustration and the sheer passion to make music. That’s how it should be. If all bands sound like this in Paris, then let’s runaway there right now and cast ourselves deep into it. The songs on Southside Suicide sound like they are for those who are fed up with what’s around them or those who just need some form of escapism. I can relate to all of that. For me, it’s everything I’d want from a modern Garage Rock band but at the same time it would fit nicely next to The Vagrants or even The Mummies.

Currently my favourite track off the record is BLANnnK$$$ (Bloody No$e) I love how unapologetically loud and rowdy it is. It feels like a drunk person losing their shit in a bar. They start ripping up a pool table, throwing glasses and punches. Going absolutely nuts for no valid reason. There are no calm moments on this record, and that’s why I love it. BLANnnK$$$ (Bloody No$e) is such a hyperactive song and it’s so addictive too. I find myself going back to it, just constantly hitting repeat. When it kicks it, it just sounds like a thousand riots and gunshots in the mind. It goes completely off and it’s easily one of the best moments on the record, but even that is hard to pick. It’s a solid record from start to finish, and I can’t get enough of it.

A real party for the ears this record is. It deserves to be played on a loop and as loud as you can possibly stand. It’s got something remarkably special about it, and I have no idea how big they are in France or out of France, but I know that I just love them and their sound is for me, entirely perfect. It’s like finally meeting your soulmate or breaking in a pair of Dr Martens or eating a really great pizza. It just makes you feel really good, and right now- I fucking need that.

I honestly cannot compare this record or this band to anything else I’ve heard before, and that’s such a rare thing to be able to do now. Everyone wants to buy into some pissy phase that means nothing and holds no meaning. Bands like Dr Chan are rare. You pick up on every tiny detail in the songs and it makes you want to go see some live music, it makes you less afraid of your own shadow, it makes you want to start your own band.

The songs are short like a real Punk song, but they have something else to it. It’s such a fantastic record and if I had the words, I’d easily write hundreds and hundreds more about why I love it so much. I like certain sounds, and sometimes I just need a certain sound in my ear but Dr Chan are unlike anything else. Buy the record this weekend and play it loud. Damage your hearing to make Monday less of a drag, just so you can block everything out.





DR CHAN.

22 02 2017

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Music should freak you out. It should corrupt and warp your mind. It should make you think outlandish things and make you behave wonderfully irrationally. But within reason, of course. It should take you somewhere no one can touch you, it should be all kinds of sordid, gentle, poetic and like a thrash to the body. It should heighten everything you think and feel. It should make you feel ten feet tall.

Here come Parisian greats, Dr Chan. They make this Psych infused Garage Rock that sounds like The Doors meets Wavves. You feel like you could be on a beach in California but in the same thought, you feel like you could romantically be wandering around a cemetery in Paris then onto some dingy alleyway trying to find your way home after dark. Their sound is brilliant, and once you start listening- you’re hooked good and proper.

Sometimes you hear something really bloody great and you know that whatever you write about them just isn’t going to be good enough. I’m not going to dwell on my inabilities right now. This Friday, Stolen Body Records are going to put out their new record, Southside Suicide which again is probably going to be a right I fawn over constantly. I can’t wait to hear it and play it obnoxiously loud in my ears.

Dr Chan aren’t the kind of band you play quietly in the background and every now and then, you pick up on key moments in their songs. Far from it. They’re a band that you play as loud as you can stand and totally lose yourself in their music. Last year they put out Mental Dhead which was one of the most underrated records of the year. It was everything I wanted from a band- it was loud, snotty and deliriously great. It sent you off into another world. You didn’t know if you were in a daze or truly floating round the streets of Paris with these guys. There’s something about them that just makes you want invest all your time into their music, and to go to every single show they do. On record they’ve got this brilliant energy that makes you wish you were in a band. I’m pretty sure their live shows are equally as infatuating.

These guys truly send you off into a whirl. They’re every part Psychedelic but not in your typical way. They’ve taken it, and made it their own. Dr Chan are going to blow minds again with Southside Suicide on Friday, I’ve not heard it but I just know. I know I’m never right about anything, but we can let it slide this time.

Mental Dhead is a mighty fine record, and as far as debut records go it is most definitely a really tough record to top but I’ve got every bit of faith that they can do it. If all bands in Paris sound like this, maybe we should all move there and just lose our minds at their shows. There is something effortlessly freeing about the music Dr Chan make and that’s something to alone, be admired. I’m still hooked on their first record, but I can’t wait to hear their new one on Friday.

If you’re looking for a band to set the mind free and to just forget everything for a while, go give them a listen. Play as loud as you want and cancel the world out for a while.





MIND RAYS.

22 02 2017

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Sometimes you just need to listen to something that feels like a massive jab to the face. I’ve become more and more restless but also annoyingly tired, so I need to listen to something that fits my mood. I don’t want to move but I don’t want to sit still. I want to listen to something that heightens all of this because nothing else will cut it.

Belgium is a beautiful place. I fell in love with Brussels twice. I spent a lot of money in a record shop there, twice. I could have happily spent all my time in there. It’s one of the best places I’ve ever been. Peaceful and timeless. Mind Rays are from Belgium- their sound isn’t peaceful. Well, to some it isn’t but for me? It sort of is. It’s what I need right now.

This Ghent based band have been around for some time, and upon first listen you can easily picture them thrashing about on some dingy stage in a sweat infused basement bar where all the outcasts unite- the best kind of place. You can picture them injuring each other and themselves as they flail about on stage, how much they bleed from smacking their face into a mic stand justifies how good the show was. Their sound is brutal and loud. If you want a label then I guess you can have Garage Rock with a bit of Punk. I’d just call it a riot to be honest.

Their new record, Nerve Endings is out next month and it’s probably going to be one of the most rowdy records you’ll hear all year. They make it easier to deal with your frustrations of daily life and being a bit of a loner, but that’s probably just me. These kinds of things just get you through. I was going to go to the gym tonight, but I just want to find more bands like Mind Rays and get totally lost in them.

Mind Rays make the kind of music to just straight up melt your face. Their earlier stuff is slightly less aggressive but only slightly. It’s all the right kind of loud and beastly. They make the kind of music that makes you morph into some kind of scary monster that isn’t to be fucked with, lurking in the shadows. I have no idea what their live shows are like, and I can only imagine that they are just as lively on stage as they are on record. Their songs don’t feel like something that has been recorded in a studio, you feel like you are listening to a band practicing and lobbing their all into it. You really pick up on the blood, sweat and maybe a few tears. And screams.

They’ll melt your mind, they’ll awaken the rusty and sleepy parts of you. They’ll make you want to slam your body into stuff, they’ll make you want to throw things around. They’ll make you want to act like a rebellious swine, and that’s one of the best things a band can do to you. They’ll lure you out of your comfort zone and before you know it, you’re comfort zone is going to be immersing yourself in this mind altering and thought bending sound. There are some bands that you just cannot get enough of, and for me, Mind Rays are easily one of those bands.





THE MUMMIES.

9 01 2017

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For Christmas I was given a record by the best person I know. Some time ago I mentioned to her that I found it virtually impossible to find anything by The Mummies. Anything I did find would have just cost me a stupid amount to have posted, so I resigned myself to the fact I was going to live the rest of my life with an eternal gap in my record collection reserved solely for The Mummies. That changed on Christmas Day. I was given their compilation, Play Their Own Records! My holy trinity of records is complete- The Gruesomes, Count Five and now, The Mummies. I mean I’m obviously still going to prioritise buying records over food, and any spare money I have will always go on records but finally having these three records means a hell of a lot to me.

The Mummies are a band that I know virtually nothing about. I love that there is hardly anything about them on the internet and they have no social media accounts. You may find out about them by accident (I did, and I can’t really remember how or when) or a band you like already may have mentioned them at some point. Regardless of how you find out about them, when you become a fan you become obsessed with trying to find their music or whatever else you can about them. Let it rule your life, take what you can get.

Their sound is loud, raw and has frequently been labelled as “budget rock.” For me, they are one of the greatest Garage Rock bands of all time. They’ve got a creepy style- it feels almost cult like and that’s how they lure you in. Covered in bandages (like a mummy) thrashing their instruments around (the musical kind, easy now) and just playing with this fury that makes you loathe yourself for not having any musical talent (this could just be me, mind.) This urgency they evoke can only be appreciated if you play it ridiculously loud. They recorded most of their songs on the cheapest equipment they could get their hands on and you know what? Sounds a billion times better than pretentious arty types spending thousands and thousands on a guitar they are scared to get a drop of sweat on. The Mummies can teach all of us a thing or two about their approach to how they make music.

The underdawgs for sure. The Mummies are one of those bands that, if you saw them live, it would probably stay with you forever and would be the reason as to why everything you get into is compared to that moment. They broke equipment, got barred from venues, made arses of themselves on stage and didn’t give a shit about it. Their approach to music was something to be admired- they just didn’t give a shit about pleasing self-absorbed “music critics” who tell you what to listen to and who slag off bands for no reason. They were for those who wanted something else, for those who were bored of the mundane- and they still are. They’re a band that once you love, you will always hold them dear to you. Whatever you own of theirs will be something you play almost every single day and possibly turning the volume up a little louder each time. Scare the neighbours but also- blow their minds and let them in on the world of The Mummies.

Some may have regarded them as joke but others, like myself, see them as one of the greatest Garage Rock bands of all time. One of the best bands of all time, especially as they are quite elusive. The not knowing is what draws you in and their sound is what keeps you there.





THE DRUNKEN DRACULAS.

18 12 2016

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If you’re looking for a band that’ll make you shit your pants, then dance (or the other way round) then you should probably listen to The Drunken Draculas. They are part Safe As Milk (Captain Beefheart) and part A Date With Elvis (The Cramps) with something else thrown in. I can’t work out what the “something” else is, but it’s brilliant regardless.

I’m not sure what they’ve been up to recently, so I’m just basing this on past releases- and there’s a substantial amount of it for me to decide that they are nothing short of excellent. I don’t know much about the band other than they are 3 gentlemen based in San Diego. They sound like they are from a lost underworld somewhere, where daylight is a myth and blood is their poison. The songs have everything from hypnotic, hip-shaking grooves to blood-curdling banshee like yelping. The kind of band you’d want to meet in a dingy alleyway and beg them to take you into their world.

The songs sound like they could be part of some creepy Horror B-Movie. The kind that goes straight to DVD but still has an amazing soundtrack. The camera isn’t steady at all, but the music creates the mood. The Drunken Draculas are the kind of band you’d want to join. They sound like they got lost somewhere and magically came together to create this intense and lustful sound that can drive any of us crazy with the urge to hear more and more by them.  I need to hear more from them; they’re just insanely great and for the life of me, I can’t work out why they aren’t the biggest band in the world.

There’s a brilliant Psychobilly/Garage Rock sound flowing through the songs- it takes parts of bands/records I love but by no means are The Drunken Draculas a cheap rip off of anyone else. They remind me of the Count Five and The Gruesomes- they’ve got that kick to them that just sets them above most. I don’t feel like I am listening to a band from recent years (I think 2014/2015 was their last release maybe, but please correct me if I’m wrong!) They catapult you back to the 60s with their sound but at the same time, launch you into a mystical and cryptic underworld that you just want and need to be part of.

The Drunken Draculas not only have one of the best band names but they also make you believe that these guys are friendly vampires who don’t want your blood, they just want to shake you up a bit and make you dance. There is virtually nothing about them online, and let’s be honest- we don’t need to know everything about them. I have no idea if they’re still making music or not, but I do know that what they have created thus far is enough to make me want more. Their sound is exciting and different to anything I’ve heard in a long time. Some may write them off as a typical Garage Rock band, but there’s really nothing typical about this magical trio. I’m all for bands/songs that send me off elsewhere, and they do it so perfectly. I can’t describe where they take you, that’s all on the listener. But when you do listen to them, don’t settle for the four walls that trap you every single day. Let them take you somewhere else, stay there a while. Be creeped out and enjoy.

I wish I had more music by them to go on, but that’s just how it is for now. The Drunken Draculas may not take your bloody but they most certainly demand your undivided attention with their unconventional style and exquisite sound.

Play loud: https://thedrunkendraculas.bandcamp.com





SHADY AND THE VAMP: The Holy Teachings Of Rock ‘n’ Roll.

15 12 2016

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A few months ago I wrote about Shady And The Vamp. They’re not a new band, but they were new to me. One song, and I was in love. That’s how it is with me. I instantly know if I’m going to love a band or not. I need all the distractions I can get, which is why I’m choosing to write about their new record, The Holy Teachings Of Rock ‘n’ Roll now rather than putting it off.

The record came out last month and I foolishly forgot to write about it. I’m not into writing, or even reading reviews of records. This isn’t a review, I guess. It’s just going to be me going on and on about why I love the record. I’m not going to pick out weak songs and pull it apart. Instead, I’ll just go on about why they are one of the best bands around and why this is one of the finest records of the year.

The Holy Teachings sounds like an extra smutty version of the first New York Dolls record. I’m fairly sure Johnny Thunders can hear this record wherever he is now, and is probably impressed by what he hears. The Holy Teachings is the perfect level of rowdiness and has a beautiful obnoxious sound. It’s effortlessly Punk sounding and it feels like a kick to the gut. The kind of kick that sets you back and leaves you in awe of what you’re hearing. It might even leave you wishing you were in a band so you could make this kind of noise.

Every song is so powerfully loud and sinfully short. Selfishly I want the songs to last longer than 2 and a half minutes but it just means I’m playing it more than 3 times in an hour- and I’m cool with that. Shady And The Vamp are everything I want from a band, everything I want from music. They’ve got this brilliant Punk/Garage Rock sound that is probably in virtually everything I listen to. Maybe that makes me a bore (I just know what moves me, and it isn’t just one style of music.) We all have a preference, and this is mine. They execute this sound so well. All you can do is play it loud and by the fourth listen, you’ve memorised every word and you are shouting along with them.

Shady And The Vamp’s debut record sounds like something that caused a whirlwind decades and decades before- they’ve captured the raw essence of Punk and Rock ‘n’ Roll. They’ve truly created something wonderful with their debut record, and it just leaves you begging for more and more from them. We’ll have to wait. They’ve got a little Psychobilly sound flowing through which makes me love them even more.

They’re not from this planet. Nothing from this planet can make something like this. The fury and passion in their sound is so powerful and so genuine. This isn’t a forced sound, this isn’t a sound that feels like they’ve cottoned onto something fashionable for the hell of it. They sound like a band who truly need to make music. They sound like a band that will hopefully be around for a long time. Creating this exceptionally weird and brilliant sound that just shoves the middle finger in the face of those who buy into the crap they are constantly forced to listen to. You need to escape the inside and embrace what’s on the outside because it just sounds much better- it sounds like Shady And The Vamp.

I refuse to pick a favourite song off the record, all I can say it is one of the best records of the year and is criminally underrated. The Holy Teachings Of Rock ‘n’ Roll is out now on the consistently brilliant, Bachelor Records.

Shady And The Vamp sound like the kind of band you must see live in order to appreciate just how loud they can get. I hope next year they find themselves in the UK playing as many dark, dingy basement bars as possible