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Wretch 32

Wretch 32 - Traktor (Feat. L) (Single Review)

Hype has been building about the grime MC ever since this track arrived on the internet and subsequently the radio. This was mainly due to him being shortlisted for the BBC Sound of 2011 list whose graduates from the school of 2010 were hits such as Ellie Goulding and Marina and the Diamonds so a bright 2011 is surely in store for the Tottenham born MC.

Written by: Steve Wellman | Date: Monday, 20 December 2010

Arcade Fire

Arcade Fire - CIA, Cardiff - December 9th 2011 (Live Review)

It was quite surprising that a show, put on by one of the most talented bands in the world could sneak up on you like this. Tickets were bought months in advance, but even the day before I was oblivious to the fact I'd be watching these multi talented musicians in 24 hours. Also oblivious to me was just how wide Arcade Fire's fan base was. The crowd was, well, very middle aged. But that didn't stop the crowd being more than energetic.

Written by: Rhys Morgan | Date: Sunday, 19 December 2010

Pint Shot Riot

Pint Shot Riot - Hazy Days (Single Review)

Indie rock band, Pint Shot Riot, is composed of Richard ‘Rocket’ Emmerson, Rob Clements, ‘Baby’ Dave Page and Chris ‘Mini Rocket’ Connell.

Written by: Michelle Wright | Date: Thursday, 16 December 2010

Kassidy

Kassidy - Oh My God (Single Review)

This quartet are causing quite a stir around Glasgow with their folky guitars and vocal harmonies. Yes, Mumford & Sons do spring to mind, but it is Take That or The Kooks that reverberate from this poppy single.

Written by: Jonny Rimmer | Date: Tuesday, 14 December 2010

Matt Cardle

Matt Cardle – When We Collide (Single Review)

X Factor. The yearly Simon Cowell induced singing competition loved by many, loathed by possibly many more. Being a lover of all things “alternative” I guess I should be one of those in the loathing category, but I’m afraid I’m an avid X Factor viewer. I’ve never voted before, I’ve never bought any winners songs, but yes, I watch it regularly. This year has been the first time I’ve had a favourite contestant from day one, and I have to say, it’s made the show that much more enjoyable. I may love anything with a great guitar riff and some fantastic drumming, but I’m also a sucker for a male vocal that can give me goosebumps, and Essex boy Matt Cardle done that for me in X Factor this year.

Written by: Katie Territt | Date: Tuesday, 14 December 2010

Motorhead

Motorhead – The World is Yours (Album Review)

“I ain’t no angel,” Motorhead main man Lemmy Kilmister sneers during ‘I Know How to Die’. Of course, anyone who isn’t yet aware of this needs to go away and check their rock’n’roll history books. Since joining Hawkwind in the early Seventies, Lemmy has been the archetypal hard-living rock star – a trait he learned roadying for Jimi Hendrix during the previous decade. Almost forty years on and Lemmy still refuses to tone down either his lifestyle or his music. Unlike many ageing legends of this magnitude, Lemmy has stayed true to the intensity and excess of rock’n’roll and has never really seen the point in putting the devil in him to rest. This will no doubt come as great news for anyone looking forward to the new Motorhead album ‘The World is Yours’ and will offer a pleasant surprise to any doubters.

Written by: Rob Sleigh | Date: Sunday, 12 December 2010

Foxy Shazam

Foxy Shazam – Foxy Shazam (Album Review)

“There sure are a lot of dogs out this evening,” says Foxy Shazam frontman Eric Nally at the start of their latest album. “Perhaps they can assist me in a song.” Cue a barking intro to opener ‘Bombs Away’. Well, this isn’t ‘Who Let the Dogs Out?’, but it certainly is barking, as is the rest of the album and everything else about Foxy Shazam for that matter. For those who aren’t yet acquainted, this Cincinnati sextet are now six years old and this is already their third offering, albeit their first on a major label. For those of you who are familiar with their previous work, their latest release may come as quite a shock.

Written by: Rob Sleigh | Date: Thursday, 09 December 2010

Arcs

Arcs - Freckles (EP Review)

Following recent support slots with The Chapman Family and Cymbals Eat Guitars, Surrey-based 'indie noiseniks' Arcs released their second EP, ‘Freckles’, last week (29th November) and I got my hands on a copy to check out the five new tracks. The first thing that struck me about the EP was how different all five songs were from one another. It made a change from the repetitive nature of the releases you tend to hear from small unknown bands, and the change in pace throughout the EP was a refreshing change.

Written by: Katie Territt | Date: Wednesday, 08 December 2010

Jay-Z

Jay-Z – The Hits Collection: Volume One (Album Review)

Two years on from the Glastonbury controversy and the subsequent success, Jay-Z, the self-professed greatest rapper in the world, is still doing pretty well for himself. Although many would argue that his relationship with the pop world has tainted some of his credibility, it would be difficult to suggest that he hasn’t at least stayed true to his own style. Looking back to that summer evening in Somerset in 2008, what Jay-Z proved was that rappers could sit comfortably among indie kids and rockers and still manage to win over the entire festival.

Written by: Rob Sleigh | Date: Wednesday, 08 December 2010

Simian Mobile Disco

Simian Mobile Disco - Delicacies (Album Review)

If you have never heard of this London based dance troupe, then a revisit to the incredible Justice vs. Simian collaboration 'We Are Your Friends' or their single from 2009 'Audacity of Huge' will ring a bell for any dance music follower. Since 2007 James Ford and Jas Shaw have been operating under the full name Simian Mobile Disco, mixing with artists as varied as Beth Ditto to The Chemical Brothers, and releasing electronica with modest success.

Written by: Owen Sheppard | Date: Wednesday, 08 December 2010

The Fins

The Fins – And When You Get To The End (Album Review)

With over two hundred gigs and seven UK tours under their belts, The Fins are hardly taking baby steps on the music scene. However, the Farnborough based five-piece have lingered for more than three years on basement stages and carpeted practise rooms before deciding to release their first full-length LP. It may seem more like hesitation than anything else, but one thing is for certain: the maturity of their sound is undeniable throughout every bar of their debut release, ‘And When You Get To The End’.

Written by: James Conlon | Date: Tuesday, 07 December 2010

Sucioperro

Sucioperro - Threads (Single Review)

“Inside my heart, there is a part that can never get over you.”

Written by: Ben Bland | Date: Monday, 06 December 2010

Frank Turner

Frank Turner – Rock and Roll (EP Review)

‘Rock and Roll’ is the name of the new EP from folk-punk troubadour Frank Turner and it couldn’t be a more suitable title. Looking back at Turner’s 2010 calendar it’s clear to see how this is a person whose every waking moment is spent immersed in rock and roll. Although this is his first new material to be released this year following 2009’s album ‘Poetry of the Deed’, Frank Turner has been anything but dormant. In addition to the non-stop touring that has made him the live favourite he is today, Frank has also managed to squeeze in a few dates supporting Green Day – including their Wembley Stadium show in June – as well as almost every summer festival under the sun.

Written by: Rob Sleigh | Date: Monday, 06 December 2010

New Model Army

New Model Army - Anthology (Album Review)

Post-punk pioneers New Model Army celebrate 30 years this year with a collection of ‘hits’ old and new, and whilst they may not be a household name, their influence can definitely be heard on modern music.

Written by: Jonny Rimmer | Date: Friday, 03 December 2010

Paper Crows

Paper Crows - Stand Alight (Single Review)

Towards the end of 2010 sees the release of Paper Crows’ debut single - ‘Stand Alight’. Paper Crows are a newly formed collaboration between Londoners Emma Panas and Duncan McDougal. As a pair they have only been making music together for a year after meeting in college, however as you take his track in you see this relative lack of experience with each other fails to hinder the eminence of their material.

Written by: Tom Austin | Date: Wednesday, 01 December 2010

Sparrow And The Workshop

Sparrow And The Workshop - Black To Red (EP Review)

Upon discovery of Sparrow and the Workshop’s multicultural line-up, which features an Irishwoman, Welshman and Scotsman, I found myself conjuring up the opening line of a rather tiresome quip.

Written by: Brian Thompson | Date: Wednesday, 01 December 2010

OST

OST - So Many Souls (Album Review)

Okay so OST are Birmingham’s latest post-dance indie offering with something to say about modern Britain, packaged in a soundtrack that’s ideal for the ‘cool’ tent at the summer’s festivals.

Written by: Siobhan Hattersley | Date: Tuesday, 30 November 2010

Doris Brendal

Doris Brendal - Latest Fantasy (Single Review)

Doris Brendal is still one of London’s best kept secrets; her distinctive sound if often underrated and overlooked by many but this offering should make people sit up and take notice.

Written by: Siobhan Hattersley | Date: Tuesday, 30 November 2010

Collapse Under The Empire

Collapse Under The Empire – The Sirens Sound (Album Review)

German duo Collapse Under The Empire clearly takes influence from the likes of 65daysofstatic and God Is An Astronaut. Choosing to mix their otherwise standard post-rock with sweeping synthesizers and plenty of electronic ticks and bleeps, the band prove themselves to be expert at keeping a record ticking over without letting things get tired and overlong. The pair creates a sound that is soothing and often takes an uplifting path as opposed to the melancholic route often associated with post-rock acts. The band has taken care, however, to avoid falling into the common trap of being nothing but one of the generic instrumental bands of today. Collapse Under The Empire have recorded an album that sounds more like the soundtrack to an epic worldwide blockbuster than an album by a rock band. The swirling layers of synthesizers and shimmering guitars swell and burst into life without ever threatening to overtake the room in which one is listening and perhaps this leads to a problem with ‘The Sirens Sound’.

Written by: Ben Bland | Date: Monday, 29 November 2010

Marnie Stern

Marnie Stern – Marnie Stern (Album Review)

‘Female Guitar Players are the New Black’ says the title of one track on Marnie Stern’s self-titled third album. This claim may be intended as tongue-in-cheek, but it’s also an interesting observation, bearing in mind the song’s creator. Stern, who has been lauded for her masterful guitar-playing ever since her 2007 debut ‘In Advance of the Broken Arm’, was previously included in Venus Zine’s “Greatest Female Guitarists of All Time” in 2008. The list was written in response to Rolling Stone magazine’s failure to include more than two women in their own “100 Greatest Guitarists in the World”. Venus Zine’s feature named 46 female guitarists worthy of recognition, but Stern easily stood out as one of the most skilful and relevant, despite being somewhat less well-known than the likes of Chrissie Hynde and Courtney Love.

Written by: Rob Sleigh | Date: Friday, 26 November 2010

 
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