Review: Sarah & The Safe Word – Goodness Gracious! Bad People.

This week sees the release of the fantastically named new album from Sarah & The Safe Word. A band that has blend of musical vibes including Dresden Dolls, My Chemical Romance and Panic! At The Disco, this band will certainly leave you with an incredible impression (they certainly did with me, with their last album!). 

A band packed with panache and eclectic melodies, this new album certainly continues in the same style as their former record but with a whole new concept and incredible melodies that play on their spooky energy in combination with their baroque sound. Tracks such as ‘ – “A Celebration–With A Vengeance?!” are great examples of this as the band bring their distinctive sound with catchy hooks that work throughout this record – and just pulls you in to their narrative so easily. 

The melodies are incredible, but the storytelling lyricism throughout this record is on another level. Reminiscent of early Panic! In that respect, this band delve into and deliver dark moments and lyrical pearls that make for such amazing listens. ‘When Oskar Fische Comes To Town’ is a great example of this, as they weave a character in to the album with such incredible sophistication.  ‘The Miscommunication’ is another great example of this creepy in a good way energy combined with incredible hooks that this band create so naturally. 

A band that continue to harness their Halloween vibes to perfection throughout their music, this is a record that is definitely going on my playlists as soon as its released and for the rest of my spooky season! 

 

Review: Marcelyn – Monstrous Experience.

Marcelyn, release their new album this week, Monstrous Existence Originally the solo project of classically-trained singer Marcelyn Lebovitz, the now-trio delivers ‘indie rock weirdness on a silver platter with a side of smooth vocals, audacious bass playing, and groovy beats’ and that is definitely the case on their new album. You can give a listen to ‘Quarantine Song’ from the album now here

A band that certainly has a firm grasp of melodies, this band never fail to deliver fantastic grooves and cool beats that work together to create great things. ‘Set It On Fire’ is a great example of that combination and makes you have to move to it, this followed by the rumbunctious melodies of ‘I Smell Like Experience’ which has some incredible beats – the drums making an impact, which combined with the vocal work working with the melodies, makes for an incredible sound. 

The vocals throughout are extraordinary. Up front but used as another layer in the melodies the vocals are incredible no matter how they are used on this record. ‘Number A’ and ‘The Show Is Over’ show this, the first highlighting the softer tones layering incredibly together to make for an amazing sound. However in contrast the raw, powerful edge of Marcelyn’s voice on ‘Sled Ted’ is incredible and delivers a powerful message on the track and makes for such a fierce song on this album. 

An album that highlights every facet of this band’s talent for melodies and vocals, Monstrous Experience is well worth listening to see just how this band use every talent to create brilliant but haunting in parts sounds that you need a moment for to take in. 

Review: The Neptunes – Mermaid A Go Go.

After a long break, this week sees the return of The Neptunas. Releasing ‘Mermaid A Go-Go’ on Friday via Altered State Of Reverb, the band have worked with With Daddy-O Grande from Los Straitjackets to make a record that is just such a fabulous listen from beginning to end. You can give a listen to some of the band’s work now through Youtube here.

It’s very hard to ignore, in fact impossible to ignore just how groovy this record is. Packed with bops from beginning to end, this band use guitars with such genius throughout this record allowing for every song to be something you move along to no matter where you are, for me, my kitchen table. In there with the guitars are fantastic drum beats that keep incredible beats that entwine through these tracks and make you forget your job is meant to be writing a review.

Great instrumental pieces abound, but where this band deliver vocals, they deliver infectious choruses and catchy hooks. ‘Secrets Of The Sea’ and ‘Shark Tooth Necklace’ are great examples of this as the band may keep it simple lyrically in moments, but really deliver songs that live no one is going to be able to stop themselves getting involved with.

Fun, funky and groovy for every minute of it, The Neptunas make a record that is light and brilliant in every second – these songs are definitely going on my playlists when release day comes, there’s no way you can’t like this record as this band deliver sea-themed rock tunes to incredible melodies.

(I also really like their mermaid themed wardrobe, those dresses are cool!).

Review: Movements – No Good Left To Give.

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This week sees the release of the new album from Movements via Fearless Records. ‘No Good Left To Give’ sees the pop punk band, push their sound to a whole new level and standard as they bring us a record that is packed with storytelling that makes this record something personal and melodies that compliment that perfectly proving that Movements is an apt name for this band as they continue to create one. You can give a listen to ‘Tunnel Vision’ here

Masters of melodies, Movements make this abundantly clear as soon as the record begins. Guitars that sweep through the darker tones of the record, this band together create sounds that compliment the lyricism and feeling of the record so well. ‘In My Blood’ opens the album and shows what this band can do and they follow through with the rest of the album – smart tones and incredible melodies build together to make an album that just hits you with the emotion packed into it. 

Patrick Miranda on this record. How on every song he makes you feel how he feels through the powers of his vocals and the strength of the lyricism, is quite frankly unheard of. Not that this record doesn’t have infectious choruses and hooks. ‘Don’t Give Up Your Ghost’ has that huge chorus that live one day is going to sounds incredible but the power of this record dominates throughout and makes for a listen that leaves you reeling and also wanting to go through it again –  just listen to a track like ‘Garden Eyes’ to see all this in action. 

A phenomenal record from start to finish, this band are ambitious and driven, and ‘No Good Left To Give’ is proof of it. Raw and intense from beginning to end, Movements here once again prove their prowess. 

Review: TULIP – High Strangeness.

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Recently releasing their new album ‘High Strangeness’, TULIP on their new album create something that weaves and works together throughout. This female fronted Symphonic Groove Metal band have on their new album blended together a collection of songs that highlight their talent for atmospheric but heavy sounds. You can listen to the album now through Brave Words here

This band’s vocalist is a powerhouse. A voice that projects with full power on every song, TULIP here lead with force. Incredible high notes that weave into the melodies on such songs as ‘Deep State’ and raw and aggressive on others such as ‘Transfiguration’, this band truly use that powerful vocal perfectly throughout this album and in combination with this band’s high standard with melodies it makes for a partnership that works throughout this record.

This album is certainly reminiscent of the genre, but that doesn’t stop it being a thunderous sound. Awesome riffs that pack a punch throughout and drums that ramp up these songs to another level, TULIP are not a band without its magic when it comes to creating a sound so big, you need a stadium to hold it all in. This is especially clear on tracks such as ‘The Inner Light’ which starts light but crunches down into a track with awesome melodies and huge drums that makes for such a great listen on this record. 

A powerful album that makes clear what this band can do, TULIP are a band hard to ignore. 

Review: First Responder – Courage.

Released on the 13th, ‘Courage’ is the new record from First Responder. The follow-up to 2016’s In My Dreams My Windows Faced West, First Responder took a hiatus leaving Courage half finished but with new bassist Collin Geddis (guitarist Cameron Carr and drummer Zayn Dweik round out the band), a couple fresh songs, and some updated arrangements Courage came to life and what a life it is.

If there is anything you notice on this record, it must be Mollenkopf’s incredible vocal. Operatic and lilting throughout, this singer’s vocals are stunning throughout this album. Soft tones on tracks such as ‘Birds Of Prey’ and ‘Dog Days’ make for powerful listens and throughout this record her voice delivers beautiful, heartfelt lyricism that just makes for such an incredible pairing. 

In partnership with these glorious vocals are some just as equally glorious melodies. ‘Dog Days’ is a good example of this too as the melody and vocal work in perfect harmony, and tracks such as ‘Dreams Of Dancing’ continue that theme, with a brilliant vocal tone with easy guitar melodies and cool beat entertwining to make for a beautiful song on this album – everything just shines throughout this record, the band working together to create something that highlights their incredible talemt. 

A beautiful record, ‘Courage’ is an album crafted to such a high standard and if you have been waiting for more from this band, it sure is well worth the wait. Stunning vocals and brilliant melodies, go listen to this masterpiece of melodic musings!

Review: The Wants – Container.

FriThe Wants - Container album packshot.jpgday sees the release of the new album from The Wants, ‘Container’ which is released via Council Records. A band formed of members of Bodega, a band that is a class of their own, The Wants show a lot of that same promise and it’s well worth hearing. ‘Fear My Society’ from the album can be heard here.

The band on this record really do bring a sound that is unique to them. Beats that seem other-worldly and melodies that push sound to another dimension, The Wants on this record certainly know what they’re doing. Tracks such as ‘Fear My Society’ have a cool groove and a huge beat that come together to make for an excellent track and that combination seems to become a norm throughout this record. 

With these incredible melodies we have angsty and raw vocals that keep up with such ease. For instance, the excellent ‘Ape Trap’ is packed with a simple hook which is delivered brilliantly here and ‘Clearly A Crisis’ is powerful and gently delivered with a harsh riff that makes for such a highlight on this record. This band bring together such powerful songs here, with lyricism that delves into the human psyche with such sophistication. 

An always interesting record to listen to, ‘Container’ from the beginning to the end flows melodically and delivers biting and powerful lyrics that keep you hooked on this record. The Wants here really push the edges of Techno, Pop and Alternative to make something incredible to listen to. 

 

Review: Disq – Collector.

This week sees the release of the new album from Disq, ‘Collector’ through Saddle Creek. Assembling together a razor-sharp, teetering-on-the-edge-of-chaos melange of sounds, experiences, memories, and influences on their new album, this is a band that you have to hear. The band on the record give us the pop-rock vibes you can only dream of and a style all of their own that leaves you wanting more.

Disq on this record really do make melodies, and make them on another level. Huge beats and riffs that drop through the record and weave into the beat with expertise, this band really have a talent for making melodies that keep this record building and bouncing around to perfection. Tracks such as ‘Konichiwa Internet’ in particular are great examples of the way with this band create such chaotic but brilliant melodies.

With these beats are the band’s way with words. Telling stories through their lyricism, this band work everything in harmony so well and it especially shows on tracks such as ‘D19’ and ‘Loneliness’ which in tone sound so different and lyrically too, however these songs unfold and have such a quality to them. ‘Loneliness’ in particular feels like listening to a stream of consciousness that sounds incredible to melody.

Disq continue to highlight the strength of their melodies on this record, pushing their sounds to new levels – ‘Fun Song 4’ certainly seeing the band using all kind of sounds and tones to make an instrumental that certainly connects the album perfectly. Lyrical storytelling and moody melodies make this an album that works to perfection.

 

Review: Thick – Five Years Behind.

Thick this week release their new album, Five Years Behind through Epitaph Records. On the record, THICK confront the countless disappointments and injustices: the reckless hypocrisy of people in power, social media’s erosion of genuine connection, dudes who feel inexplicably entitled to share their most loathsome opinions – and that description certainly sounds like my kind of record.

Delivering incredible hooks that get into your head with such ease, Thick on this record craft some great songs, delivering raw and honest lyricism that keeps you hooked from beginning to end. ‘Sleeping Through The Weekend’ in particular gives us the bouncy melodies you need in combination with some fantastic hooks that never stop giving on this song, and that runs throughout the record.

Packed with energy, which is delivered by great riffs and awesome drum beats that keep the pace going throughout the whole of the album, 5 Years Behind does not let you breathe all that much. ‘Won’t Back Down’ for example builds into something excellent, with drums that really pack a punch and a riff that winds up the song with such style, it makes for such a good track on this album. The great riffs continue on tracks such as ‘Can’t Be Friends’ and give this song a whole new energy that just sounds so good.

An album that live is going to go off, 5 Years Behind is a raw, energetic and pacey album that keeps going and going for days, and it makes for an incredible listen as they delivery their own firey, bouncy punk vibe that you will never not be a fan of. ‘Your Mum’ is definitely going on a playlist as soon as possible.

 

Review: Johanna Glaza – Exile.

 

Photo: Kat Bumbul.

Johanna Glaza, Friday, released her new album ‘Exile’ and what an album it is. Beautifully delivered throughout this album is a collection of harmonies and melodies that ensnare throughout these seven songs, Exile truly is worthy of giving a listen to as soon as you can – these thirty minutes might be some of your favourites of 2020.

Using her vocal as a stunning instrument from the beginning of the record, Glaza gives you vibes of musicians such as Kate Bush with stunning notes and high hitting vocals that leave an incredible impression. Throughout the album Glaza pushes her boundaries melodically and keeps using her vocal to explore different styles and it sounds so good, especially on tracks such as ‘Dear Life’.

Dramatic beats and moments of intriguing synth weave together and make for such fascinating listening. Tracks such ‘Isabella’ for example bringing eery melodies and dark moments to the record that conflict with the intriguing and unique beats of ‘Dear Life’, the song before. Ominous beats combined with the haunting lyricism makes for a track that just grabs you from the moment it begins, the vocals delivering such drama to the song too and make for one of the most interesting things I’ve heard so far this year.

An intriguing record melodically and vocally, Exile is an incredible record which continues to highlight the talents of this formidable writer throughout. Tracks such as ‘King’s Alive’ are soft, light and beautiful and ‘Dear Life’ brings to your ears incredible sounds and a vocal range that you have to hear. Go listen.