Reviews

It’s not as if they’ve got magician’s fingers, the five members of pathos weavers The National, they just tend to work in your blind-spot. It’s kind of like they’ve been round to your house daily, sneaking a shiny pound coin from your wallet while you weren’t looking, until one day they arrive on your doorstep with a high yield savings account you never knew you had, a return on the half-inched deposits and the monetary means to fulfil your life’s Continue Reading

Reviews

Cake Or Death ~ Lee Hazlewood

Last year we lost our own Dad to cancer. Born in 1928 he was roughly the same age as Mr Hazelwood but sadly never achieved the same cult status. Jarvis Cocker never cited my Dad as an influence and artists like Primal Scream, Nick Cave, Lambchop and Lydia Lunch never covered any of his songs. When he did die, it wasn’t after some prolonged, heroic struggle lasting years; it was because we pulled the plug on his life-support machine after Continue Reading

Reviews

The Flaming Lips – At War With The Mystics

Flaming Lips records always begin with a puff of fairy-dust and a bang. Take the gradual psychedelic bell-ringing delight ‘Abandoned Hospital Ship’ from ‘Clouds Taste Metallic’, the bouncy-rubber robotics of ‘Flight Test’ from ‘Yoshimi…’ and of course the unrivalled ‘Race For The Prize’ from their definitive ‘Soft Bulletin’. But even by those proven standards it feels like they’ve glued their goggles on and taken a calf-crunching run up this time. The ecstatic ‘The Yeah Yeah Yeah Song’ is a teetering Continue Reading

Reviews

Just Like The Fambly Cat ~ Grandaddy

There are probably a thousand fancy guitar-shaped platitudes you could string together to form a wreath to lay at the foot of this painfully grand departure. Parting is such sweet sorrow. Sometimes you have to grow farther apart to keep growing together. Yesterday brought the beginning, tomorrow brings the end but somewhere in the middle we’ve become the best of friends. Do not go gently into that good night. Personally I prefer a phrase my late Dad used to repeat Continue Reading

Reviews

So you’re stuck in a random truck stop in some two bit desert town.  A 300lb local takes exception to your ‘purdy’ clothes and ‘your one of them city folk’ accent.  So what do you do? You fight the bastard! And the soundtrack, well it’d be exactly like this.  Purveyors of the ‘less is more ethos’, The Kills return with a brooding indignation of an album.  It’s devotion and its necessity and although they’re still rocking the monkey on my Continue Reading

Reviews

LCD Soundsystem ~ LCD Soundsystem

There’s homage and there’s homagé. Whilst The Rapture imitate almost to the point of exactitude the clanking, cantankerous punk-funk posturing of the early eighties post-punk scene (what little I know of it, anyway) another disco-punk lynch-pin is fathoming how create something far more gloriously original. True, the cod-disco beats are all present and correct but tracks like ‘Too Much Love’ are just too goddam black and intuitive to be the spill of some shambling, computer generated music-geek – as much as Continue Reading

Reviews

Guitar and Drum ~ Stiff Little Fingers

There are a couple of things about Stiff Little Fingers that I didn’t know I didn’t know. I didn’t know that their debut album, ‘Inflammable Material’ was the first release on Jeff Travis’s Rough Trade label (and now home to The Strokes, British Sea Power and a host of other new inspirables). I didn’t know that ‘Inflammable Material’ was the very first Independent album ever – ever – to enter the national UK music charts. That’s pretty lax isn’t it? Continue Reading

Reviews

That the irreverent trans-stylist Jarvis Cocker and the delightfully bonkers Fat Truckers have yet to concede defeat with their loose and eccentric DJ collective, the Desperate Sound System perhaps shows the sheer tenacity of character these daft Sheffield folk have in pursuing the fantastic and the bizarre in the most brutal of everyday places. Pulp charted this territory better than anyone with their priceless and eerie narratives on psychotic suburbia, but it’s apparent also in the volatile, monster-pop of Baby Continue Reading

Reviews

Ha Ha Sound ~ Broadcast

Now a trio following the departure of original member Roj Stevens in 2002, Broadcast release ‘HaHa Sound’ off the back of the excellent ‘Pendulum’ EP. Coming somewhere between Pram, Stereolab and the Pizzicato Five and sharing their influence amoungst everyone from Ladytron , Toktok Vs Soffy O to the nursery freak outs of Lemon Jelly, Broadcasts’ Trisha Keenan, James Cargill and Tim Felton pursue the hugely whimsical and melodic grooves of 60s psychedelia stretched out on a broad canvass of Continue Reading

Reviews

Previously referred to as “the heaviest band in rock”, one might (erroneously) predict that the guitars opening “Diamond”, are playing tangled barre chords with raging dual kick drums, grinding bass, and a singer imitating Tom Waits, or his uncle with the scissors down his throat.Here is a band that easily disproves the concept that “weighty” or “big” is ever really down to the amount of distorted guitar tracks on a single number, and shows, again, the overall sensation of the Continue Reading