Category Archives: Review

Album Review: Kasabian – For Crying Out Loud

Kasabian’s sixth album is fun – a celebratory response to what had been a testing 2016. Tom Meighan still displays his laddish exterior but a more modest and unpretentious personality clearly shines through, reflecting the personal challenges he has had to overcome.
 

This album is full of big tunes and simple uptempo pleasures and takes a step back towards the band’s original doctrine. Whilst still satisfying the followers of their renowned ‘Lad Rock’ the music on this album is more upbeat and moves away from the Kasabian that were in danger of beginning to depress.
Primary songwriter and Guitarist Serge Pizzorno who completed the album in just 6 weeks has described the album as more “simple” than their most recent work and the result is a bundle of massive tunes with instant impact and melodies that sound familiar but bristle with joy.
The opening track Ill Ray (The King) encapsulates the celebratory influence that the band have aimed for, with a thundering chorus that will reverberate around the festival circuit this year.
You’re In Love With A Psycho is a declaration that you can’t choose who you love and features rhythmic and intricate guitar work from Pizzorno that highlight the influences of his hero Berry Gordy.
Other notable tracks include TwentyFourSeven a Stones influenced rock track and the Good Fight featuring a vocal to and fro between Meighan and Pizzorno
There are more mellow tracks such as Wasted which provides a melancholic interlude and the beautiful All Through The Night which showcases the vocals of Pizzorno.
Sixteen Blocks is a definite risk taker with a radical reggae backdrop topped by a big singalong chorus. 
Come Back Kid sees a return to the Kasabian swagger, Bless This Acid House is a cracking track with influences from the Buzzcocks , and the carefree and peppy Good Fight even features a boogie-woogie piano, a reminder that Kasabian do not always follow the expected format.
The final track Put Your Life On It, originally premiered at the band’s King Power Stadium shows last May, is an ode from Pizzorno to his wife, a celebration of love and life featuring the DMU Gospel Choir.
For Crying Out Loud provides confirmation that Kasabian are back where they belong. Inspired and influenced not just by the ups but also the downs of life, this album will certainly not disappoint the loyal following the band have accumulated over the years.
Written by: Lindsy Stott

Album Review: Mallory Knox – Wired

There have been a number of mixed reviews about this long awaited album – described as ‘a journey of self-discovery’ for Mallory Knox, and not all have been favourable. However – this album is good – very good and a showcase of British talent on the alt-rock scene.
To coincide with the release this Cambridge five-piece rock band are embarking on a headline tour throughout March and April.

Whilst the rise of Mallory Knox has been slow, they have developed a sound and dedicated fan base from their previous two albums even though mainstream support has been lacking.

Wired is an album with attitude and will appeal to a wider audience than their previous releases it is clear that the band is appealing to new fans with strains of the Good Charlotte, Biffy Clyro and even All Time Low coming through.

The opening track Giving it up is an exploding, catchy lead single with a resounding chorus sees a more aggressive vocal lead from Mikey Chapman and Lucky Me, Wired and Saviour successfully maintain this loud, aggressive, high-tempo structure throughout.

California is a pop-punk revival, an optimistic love song combining quieter moments that again has a catchy, upbeat chorus.

For You sees a distinct change of pace but will be a favourite with Mallory Knox followers of old and it is a recount of the impact, effects and struggles of living with a mental health issue. This does seem to be a common theme throughout the album, with Better Off Without You referencing Sam Douglas’ personal struggle with anti-depressant medication; both tracks and both tracks feature the heavy riffs and dominant guitars so familiar with Mallory Knox.

Falling In Love a Biffy Cyro inspired track is a quieter , more melancholy track whilst Midnight is a catchy pop-punk inspired track and Come Back Around a reflection of optimistic alt-rock.

Wired sees Mallory Knox opening up to their fans and exposing their more vulnerable side, highlighting issues the band have faced over the years, resulting in an album of exceptional music and exemplary lyrics. 

This may be the album that finally allows Mallory Knox to join their more successful British contemporaries – Lower Than Atlantis and You Me At Six, an opportunity that they so well deserve!
Written by: Lindsy Stott

Live review: Bring Me The Horizon – O2 London – 31st Oct and 5th Nov 2016

BRING ME THE HORIZON ARE AN ARENA BAND NOW

Bring Me the Horizon are in the midst of their first sell out arena tour across the UK – their biggest tour to date – even playing two sell out nights at the O2, London before heading on to Europe.

Not only are BMTH, as they are known amongst their fan base, rapidly staking their claim the best Alternative Rock/Metal band around but are on the verge of eclipsing pretty much every other modern rock band. As well as proving that they are a fantastic arena band, blending seamless production with mind-blowing graphics that together produce a stunning and powerful show, BMTH look completely at home, commanding every inch of the cavernous surroundings, as though this is where they have always meant to be.

An explosive entrance, complete with a torrent of streamers launched BMTH straight into Happy Song and this fusion of energy, pyrotechnics, smoke, light continue right through until the last chords of an arresting rendition of Drown;t he singalongs are big, the mosh pits bigger and rarely has a standing crowd been so big or lively at such a venue.

Follow You, a prime example of Bring Me The Horizon’s newer material incorporating a more progressive sound has been readily accepted by the older fans who were rewarded by a rare performance of Crucify Me and pounding Chelsea Smile from 2008, dispelling any thoughts that this band may have lost the bite that has been their trademark. The music remains loud, strong and exciting, and a true accomplishment that a band can so successfully mix up so many different genres and elements whilst continuing to push the boundaries.

Oli Sykes – whose vocals are on point throughout, seems to have grown in confidence; with a confident swagger Oli commands the stage with a sureness that even sees him sharing with the audience the ‘loss of a wife, and a friend this year’. The heavier songs – House of Wolves and Antivist – from the band’s previous album Sempiternal stand out, an energizing combination of noise and melody whilst the supporting vocals of Jordan Fish and Lee Malia on songs like Sempiternal and Doomed are without doubt equally impressive.

There is so much talent in this band, clearly displayed throughout this big, bold and captivating show. The slick staging, big screens and overall presence of this deserving band, Oli, Jordan, Matt, Lee and Matt brought The O2 to its knees, not once but twice.

BMTH are good – VERY good!!!

Set list

​​Happy Song 

​​Go to Hell, for Heaven’s Sake 

​​The House of Wolves 

​​Avalanche 

​​The Best Is Yet to Come 

​​Shadow Moses 

​​Chelsea Smile 

​​Follow You 

​​Crucify Me 

​​Sleepwalking 

​​Doomed 

​​Can You Feel My Heart 

​​Antivist 

​​Throne 

​​Encore:

​​True Friends 

​​Oh No 

​​Drown

Written by: Lindsy Stott

Album Review: The People The Poet – Paradise Closed

The People The Poet – Paradise Closed

Release date: April 1st 2016

Members: Leon Stanford – Vocals, Tyla Campbell – Guitar, Pete Mills – Bass, Lewis Rowsell – Drums

The Pontypridd rock outfit made lots of new friends at SXSW in Austin, Texas – so much so that the have been invited back again this year. In addition, they will shortly be releasing a new 6 track EP ‘ Paradise Closed’ – a follow up to their critically-acclaimed debut album The Narrator (2013).

‘Happy Being Miserable’ – an upbeat song that is the opening track for a more carefully produced and accomplished collection of songs than the band have previously released . This track is a witty,  heavily laden sarcastic track that is both fun and catchy

‘Club 27’ follows and is by contrast a blues based track and the forthcoming single to be released on 15th March. With a sound that could be likened to Bruce Springstein’ this is a strong anthem track that deserves to receive due acclaim being a stand out song that pays tribute to some of the music world’s young losses; this will definitely engage audiences and have them singing along

‘Matchday’ – this previous released single which has received an encouraging amount of airplay as well as having been used for Welsh Rugby Union coverage – reminiscent of the Killer’s Sam’s Town, with Leon Stanford duetting with occasional support singer Greta Isaac.

‘Same Heart’ – reminiscent of Kings of Leon – an undulating and rolling track with strong drum tempo, lyrically very clever and thought provoking, supported by haunting and delicate guitar riffs.

‘Needle In A Haystack’ – a track that would slip easily into a Coldplay album, another catchy track with changing tempos, it is quite simply instrumentally brilliant.

‘When The Fire Goes Out’ a memorable track with strong acoustics and leading piano. The soft tempo of this track, with delicate guitars, builds to showcase a depth to Leon’s voice that is a match for Chris Martin or Bono.

This EP is superb and showcases a variety and depth to their music and songwriting that few bands around at the moment have, and without doubt the best they have written so far. This band have produced an EP of quality that deserves serious recognition; this band have a strong future.

5/5

Written By: Lindsy Stott

Live Review: Verses – The Hope and Ruin, Brighton – 4th December 2015

Jason Danzelman – Vocals/Guitar
Joe Welsh – Guitar
Dan Freese – Drums
Joe Gale – Bass/Vocals
Brighton rockers, Verses played their first hometown gig in almost two years, due to their relentless touring, at The Hope and Ruin on 4th December.
The venue – though small was filled with the bands staunch supporters including many friends and family and a rousing reception greeted the band.
This energetic band displaying their distinctive and impressive sound played a strong set which defied the compact setting. The clear, melodious tones of vocalist Jason Danzelman packed a punch, against the strong, pounding drum rhythms of Dan Freese. The accomplished bass of Joe
Gale was supported by the catchiest of guitar riffs from Joe Welsh.
These guys successfully mixed softer deliveries with anthemic sing-along tracks, with songs that so obviously have a lot of meaning to the them, backed by the eager and supportive crowd.
This long overdue return to their hometown highlighted just how far this band have come since 2010 with an accomplished and emotional set that will undoubtedly see them out on the road again in 2016.
Written By: Lindsy Stott

Live Review: The Gospel Youth – Hope and Ruin, Brighton – 4th December 2015

Sam Little – Vocals/Bass
Julian Bowen – Guitar
Kev Deverick – Guitar
Max Wingell – Drums
The Gospel Youth – the awesome Brighton pop-rockers played their last gig of 2015 at The Hope and Ruin , Brighton.
The venue – though small and compact did not stop The Gospel Youth from delivering a tight, professional and impressive set.
One year on from releasing their debut EP Kids this band have succeeded in firmly establishing themselves on the music scene – having shared stages with Mallory Knox, Deaf Havana, We Are The Ocean, Verses and many more. This band do not live in the shadow of their more well known peers, delivering a formidable performance that belies their relative inexperience.
The talents of each member of this band cannot fail to impress – strong, powerful vocals, gutsy, driving drums and dexterous guitar playing, result in a consumate pop rock performance.
The only disappointment was the mere 1/2 hour set, but the 30 minutes was filled with a high octane performance of new material – Falling and All She Does as well as original material from their ‘early days’ a mere 12 months ago.
This band have come far in 2015 and let’s hope 2016 will be the year to see them get the greater recognition they so deserve.
Written By: Lindsy Stott

Album Review: No Devotion – Permanence

• Lee Gaze – lead guitar, backing vocals (2014–present)

Mike Lewisrhythm guitar, backing vocals (2014–present)

Jamie Olivervocals, piano, keyboards, synths (2014–present)

• Stuart Richardson – bass guitar, backing vocals (2014–present)

Geoff Ricklylead vocals (2014–present)

Touring

Philip Jenkins – drums, percussion (2015–present)

Session musicians

• Matt Tong – drums, percussion (2015–present)

No Devotion have released their long awaited debut album, Permanence which signals a new sound and a new beginning for the four remaining members of Lostprophets. Teaming up with Geoff Rickly, who has also swopped his frontman duties from his previous band Thursday, and drummer Matt Tong, the former Bloc Party drummer, this seasoned group have produced an album of contrasts – post punk infused with subtle electronic rock, grinding bass and pulsing beats offset with vocal harmonies and distorted guitar melodies. There are elements from The Cure, New Order and Joy Division.

This welcome fresh sound  celebrates a new chapter for this band who emerged from the shadows with the release of the first, and very addictive single Stay last year, which was followed by the catchy 10000 Summers.

These two upbeat tracks contrast with the darker I want to be your God – a track that evokes the sound of fellow Welsh compatriots Manic Street Preachers.

There are experimental longer tracks – Night Drive and Grand Central both run to over 6 minutes each, as well as an unexpected instrumental track Death Rattle.

Permanence is a finely crafted and polished piece of collaborative work that captures the angst of past events but signals a new dawn. Their refreshing sound has been welcomed across the alternative music scene and the future looks bright for this transatlantic group.

No Devotion are currently in the midst of their first US tour, being supported by former Kids in Glass Houses drummer Philip Jenkins, having just played a number of select shows across Europe and Great Britain following their successful appearances at the Reading and Leeds festivals this Summer.

Permanence
Collect Records

  1. Break
  2. Permanent Sunlight
  3. Eyeshadow
  4. Why Can’t I Be With You?
  5. I Wanna Be Your God
  6. Death Rattle
  7. 10,000 Summers
  8. Night Drive
  9. Stay
  10. Addition
  11. Grand Central

Written By: Lindsy Stott