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.

Review: Civil Villains – Snake Oil EP.

‘SCV-EP-SNAKE-OIL-COVERART.jpgnake Oil’ is the new EP from Civil Villains, which is released this week. For fans of acts such as At The Drive In or Modest Mouse, Civil Villiains have some great comparisons and some great music too – with thoughtful lyricism and melodies that deliver some excellent DIY tones. Give a listen to ‘Dead Still’ now here.

Gritty and determined, Civil Villains bring intense melodies and beats that bring a tension to a song that is unmatched. Songs such as ‘Gargoyles’ are incredible as the band add a depth to the track with guitars that build something huge and add an air of mystery to the song that just work so damn well. This band continue to bring it throughout this record, having such perfect timing throughout – exploding in sound to perfection, see ‘Dead Still’ for proof.

The vocals pack a punch throughout, ‘Dead Still’ is a good example of this too and the chorus is delivered with a ferocity that just takes your breath away, the verses delivered with a raw edge that works so well with the bouncy melody the band create. ‘Siren Bound’ takes down the pace and adds a touch of gloom to end the record with and end it with perfection.

Snake Oil sees this band deliver on everything. Vocals that are brutal but brilliant, melodies that kick you in the face and grooves that just work, this is a band you should not be ignoring any time soon.

Review: Dry Cleaning – Boundary Snacks And Drinks.

Out on Friday, ‘Boundary Snacks And Drinks’ is the new record from Dry Cleaning via Its Ok – the record available digitally, both EP’s will be compiled together for a 12″ vinyl release on October 25th. The follow up to ‘Sweet Princess’ this band continue to expand on their sound and it makes for incredible listening.

This record for its melodies, is pretty intense. The sombre delivery of the words packs this record with thought and feeling as they delve in to society and people. ‘Dog Proposal’ delivers a honest take on the way world works today and ‘Viking Hair’  is inspired by romantic ideas of someone you don’t know well, in harmony with a sound reminiscent of a heart rate monitor and it works together so damn well.

Tracks such as ‘Sit Down Meal’ on this record display this band’s way with melodies, melodies that perfectly suit the the delivery of the lyricism throughout the record. Bouncy guitars in combination with psychedelic moments of Synth blend together perfectly. Tracks such as ‘Spoils’ also stand out for their sound too as the band produce cool drum beats and a riff that just drives this track to a whole new level of brilliance.

An intriguing and fantastical album that delivers something completely refreshing, Dry Cleaning bring us something excellent on their new EP that I’ve not heard quite the like of before. Melodies that work so well with the moods of the lyricism, that makes you pay attention, ‘Boundary Road Snacks And Drinks’ is a record you will not forget.

Review: The Run Up – In Motion.

The Run Up this month release their new record, ‘In Motion’ through Real Ghost Records. The band were holed up for 10 days at Reel Recording Studios in York where they created a heartfelt, fun and honest record and it makes for a great listen. The band are soon to be on tour across the US, and if you can, go and see them.

A band that from the start gives us a vocal power that delivers great lyricism, we have soaring and roar vocals that make you pay attention, this is especially clear on tracks such as ‘Discretion’. ‘Discretion’ gives us great drum work, fierce guitars and a vocal that tears through the track delivering every word with incredible feeling – and it makes for one of the stand out songs on this album.

This band’s energy just reaches new levels as the album goes on. Bringing to our attention power-packed riffs and drums that lay the foundations for an album that is infused with big rock melodies, The Run Up are impressive throughout. Tracks such as ‘Sticky’ are perfect examples of this band’s talent for making songs that just live are going to work so damn well. A band with a musical dynamite stick when it comes to melodies, this band really do know how to make a song and it shows throughout the whole of ‘In Motion’.

A fantastic listen, this band keep the pace and the emotion going until the end and leaves you wanting and waiting for more, for me, this is a musical delight from beginning to end.

Review: Suggested Friends – Turtle Taxi.

Turtle Taxi album copy.jpgThis week sees the release of the debut album from Suggested Friends, ‘Turtle Taxi’ released via Fika Recordings. Described as ‘an indie rock quartet with a firm grounding in queer identity, DIY punk roots with interweaving guitars of 90s indie’ this is the band I’ve been waiting for, and listening to this album, it was worth the wait.

Pop sensibilities abound on this record, with cool melodies and upbeat beats that work throughout this album and that make it so much fun to listen to and keep you putting it on repeat for as long as you want. Tracks such as ‘At Ease’ are great examples of this band’s way with melodies as they give us that incredible grooves and bring together elements of Folk and Math Rock that make this such a stand out song.

Suggested Friends pack this album with incredible choruses from the start and hooks that just grab you and pull you in, leaving you in their capture for days on end, as these songs roll around your head. ‘Pretty Soon Your Grave Will Be Landfill’ has an incredible title, but also some of the most honest lyricism and a statement on just how the world works for young people in this day and age, it stands out on this album for those reasons.

An album that captures and is a sign of the times, Suggested Friends on ‘Turtle Taxi’ make an album that gives us feelings, anger, frustration, and love with a dash of nostalgia –  it’s a really incredible listen that captivates from the beginning to the end and an album that will make you listen and those albums, they are the best ones.


Review: Tirade – Nothing Dramatic EP.

Tirade Cover Artwork.jpgNothing Dramatic is the new EP from Tirade, which is self-released this week. Formed in 2015, and rendering influence panning from Press to MECO and Lower Than Atlantis, to Enter Shikari and Boston Manor, Tirade cleverly bind intoxicating up-tempo alt-rock with contagious hooks and unique phrasing. Listen to ‘To Be Honest’ from the EP here.

Packing the EP with power from the moment it begins with awesome guitars that make these tracks pop, Tirade really do know what they are doing with a riff and it is well worth giving these songs a listen to for. Tracks such as ‘No Time’ are great examples of this band’s ability to really accentuate their melodies, especially the guitars that this band really make their own on this record.

Listening to this EP I see the band’s inspirations and elements work together and really shine out on these songs. Tracks such as ‘To Be Honest’ and ‘Burned Out’ make clear this band have a vocalist to believe in. Delivering feeling and great lyricism throughout the album, this band keep the writing infectious but still keep that integrity that makes for some great listening – something Lower Than Atlantis for example do to pefection, and so do this band.

A great EP for riffs and big choruses, Tirade here deliver an EP that gives us an idea of what they are capable of, and it is made clear that that is plenty. Highlights for me here are ‘Burned Out’ and opening/title track ‘Nothing Dramatic’ which sums up this band’s sound so well.

Review: CULTDREAMS – Things That Hurt.

Things-That-Hurt-2500px copy.jpgFormerly known as Kamikaze Girls, Cultdreams is the new name for a band that hasn’t changed anything about it’s greatness, if new album ‘Things That Hurt’ is anything to go by, which is released this week through Big Scary Monster Records. Give a listen to ‘We Never Rest’ from the album now here.

A sound that expands throughout the album, Cultdreams do not hold back on this record when it comes to pushing in new directions even if lyrically they still challenge and defy in every way. Tracks such as ‘Not My Generation’ are huge songs, with incredible melodies and then crashing Rock sounds that with the vocal work so well – Cultdreams throughout deliver melodies that just fill up your ears and it sounds incredible from beginning to end.

Livingstone is an incredible vocalist, and this record allows that to shine throughout. Raw but delivering something filled with feeling, this vocalist just makes this record something to marvel in every moment of it. Tracks such as ‘Statement’ are incredible and raw, just feeling like a punch to the gut from second to second, this followed up by the anger of ‘Repent, Regress’ makes for something to listen to, with amazing power behind every word and an anger that just delivers every single time.

An incredible album that sees the members continue to grow and move in new directions musically, Cultdreams makes an album that just works together beautifully from start to finish. This band took time to come back with a new record and what they made is something that shows their hard work and it makes for exquisite listening – great things should be waited on, and this is a great thing.

Review: BTS @ Wembley – 1/6/2019.

Jimin emerges from a bubble, ala Love Yourself Answer Artwork to sing Serendipity, his solo.

BTS are a band beginning to take over the world. A phenomenon that many can’t explain, but only by watching them and listening to the passion they have for their fans and what they do can you really see for me, why this band are selling out Wembley and doing it twice as they continue their world tour tonight in the same venue. I would recommend checking out their new album Map Of The Soul: Persona to fully understand this band’s direction.

The band last night opened with Dionysus. Packed with incredible choreography that I feel is a new direction for the band in how it’s stage produced, the band’s presence is made abundantly clear no matter where you are in the stadium as they take the stage and moved down the platform working down the stage area – a platform that I feel isn’t taking advantage enough in such a big venue, considering the size and number of people in the building (think of the picture takers!).

Moving through the evening, the band play fan favourite tracks including ‘Fire’, ‘Not Today’ and the solos each member has on the Love Yourself albums. RM for me with his solo track ‘Love’ bursts with energy and you can tell why he was chosen to lead this group as it’s rapper as he oozes charisma and delivers a song he seems even after all this time to sing with feeling – this is a band that is not bored of performing together at all yet. I also appreciate ‘Singularity’ V’s solo, with the incredible timing with the choreography he has.

Of course with this band we have a production that a band would dream of and I feel one aspect that is often overlooked is how the band use their fan’s lightsticks (or army bombs) to light up the venue. Yes, they do cost each person going in £45 but I feel without these sticks you lose a dimension of the show. Each stick connects to the beat and mood of the song, changing colour and filling the stadium with light – the room turning purple (purple is the colour of love, according to V from BTS and it’s stuck!) is such an incredible thing to watch during ‘So What’ and the room looked like a meteor shower as the audience led a mexican wave.  (The giant leopards, are pretty cool too).

Incredibly supportive fans (my sister got quite emotional and there were people asking her if she was okay), an incredible level of production including fireworks, lighting and a bouncy slide, with a powerful collection of songs. this is a band that I am not sure are heading towards, but whatever it is, we should be watching them, as I think we will be watching history being made.


Review: Holly Rees – Text Me When You Get There.


Holly Rees Text Me When You Get There The Live ...

Holly Rees this week sees the release of her live EP, ‘Text Me When You Get There’. The latest release from this UK Folk Indie Artist, Rees delivers songs that are powerful and confessional and it sounds so good. You can give a listen to first single, ‘Better’ now through Soundcloud here.

I could probably listen to Holly Rees forever. Maybe an exaggeration, but this musician, is just what I want to listen to. Beautiful melodies that showcase her astounding voice from the moment this EP begins, it makes for such a great listening. Tracks such as ‘Toast’ and ‘Better’ are great examples of this talent on show as she delivers honest lyricism with energetic melodies.

Rees on this record sounds so good. A gorgeous voice that delivers both attitude and a sweetness on this EP, ‘Text Me When You Get There’ makes clear live and on the record she is an amazing talent. Songs such as ‘His Thermos Song’ are great examples of Rees voice being put on display, and it makes for some of my favourite listening. Catchy hooks and a storytelling way to her lyricism that I absolutely adore.

Reminiscent in moments of Lucy Spraggan, Holly Rees certainly makes for some great listening. Fun melodies, but with lyricism that makes for so much emotion, Rees is a delight to the ears. Highlights for me on this record are ‘Toast’ and ‘Feel Something’ where she really showcases that emotional lyricism and easy melodies that make her such a brilliant talent.

Review: Neverlanded – FuU.

Neverlanded today release their new EP this week, FuU. Raising funds for the incredible Mermaids charity with this new record, the band deliver tracks for fans of bands such as L7 or Nirvana. You can find out more about the band through their Facebook page or Insta here and here, and you should. 

Raw and powerful vocals and slower moody vocals combine on this record brilliantly from the beginning of the EP, this band making clear how strong vocally they are. Delivering lyricism that’s packed with emotion and strong with metaphor, Neverlanded skillfully put together songs that make for intriguing and incredible listens.

To accompany these storming vocals, are some really good melodies. Strong riffs pack these tracks and give them them the energy they need to really make a great live show. Tracks such as ‘MesS.O.S’ in particular comes to mind as the band bring incredible energy to the end of the record with a riff that lifts the song from the intro and makes for one hell of a end to the record they have created.

A great record for an incredible cause, Neverlanded really have four songs here that just burst with their talent for great melodies and hooks that will stay with you for days, if not weeks. Highlights for me on this record are ‘MesS.O.S.’ for definite, but opening track ‘Brainsane’ is a fantastic start to this record, that is well worth paying for, especially for a such a great reason to.