Following Sharks decision to call it a day James Mattock and Carl Murrihy, along with former Computers band mate Aidan Sin, began work on new music under the name of The Violent Hearts. The Birmingham, UK trio will release a brand new EP on the 28th July, that will feature the tracks Porcelain World and Hex On Me, that will be released via Roosevelt Records and features a perfect mix of power-pop and post-punk that is infused with the spirit and romanticism of The Only Ones, Buzzcocks and The Chameleons.
By AJ Phink
Hundredth released their third album, Rare, earlier this month, it follows on from their sophomore album, Free, but on this release Hundredth have shifted away from their hardcore roots and into radically different territory. After the release of their last album Hundredth felt like they’d taken hardcore as far as it could go and they were left with a stark choice, either reinvent themselves and take the risk of heading out into uncharted territory, or call it quits and end the band, thankfully they picked the former option. They haven’t abandoned the heavy side of their nature, but they have incorporated shoegaze, post punk and even dream pop into their sound to create something unexpected and new.
Vertigo and Neurotic kick things off with an energetic and atmospheric wall of sound that makes you think you’ve got a handle on their new direction, when along comes White Squall, a track that channels Mancunian post punk and indie influences such as The Chameleons and The Stone Roses. The breakdowns and channelled rage are now a thing of the past, instead they have adopted the lush soundscapes of indie and shoegaze, but for all the changes they have made a punk attitude still underpins the album and there are still moments for their old school fans. Disarray in particular brings a heavier punk element back into the mix and shows that they haven’t forgotten their roots, but for the most part this is an adrenalized interpretation of the aforementioned influences and bands.
Many punk bands over the years have adapted, mutated or just downright changed their sound to embrace new influences and ideas, personally I always like to hear a band experimenting with new ideas, their are noble exceptions to this rule who have a sound of their own, but let’s face it, they are few and far between. There will be those who will feel that Hundredth have turned their back on their roots, but I can imagine that a greater number will be coming into the fold as a result of this album. Hundredth have proved that change isn’t always a bad thing and have produced an impressive and brave album that makes me hope that they keep changing
Rare can be ordered here via Hopeless Records here
VultureGood Cheer Records
By AJ Phink
Turtlenecked is the work of 20 year old Elliot Harrison, the latest album, Vulture, was recorded in Smith’s living room, having graduated from making his previous recordings in his bedroom, and it was released yesterday, the 16th June 2017, via Good Cheer Records. Vulture is an idiosyncratic album that represents an ambitious and compassionate work of post punk baroque and roll that will build on Turtlenecked‘s reputation for being a singular recording artist.
Opening track Boys Club kicks things off with an off key pop intro that sits between disco and classical before the track kicks in with an impassioned attack on toxic masculinity. From here on in Vulture is an unpredictable beast of an album that veers between moments of falsetto pop and muscular punk rage that combines with a manic indie energy and angular post punk rhythm, along with a distinctly pop sensibility, to create a wildly original slab of art punk that confounds any expectations you may have had. Any album that is the work of one person can veer into the self indulgent, the near seven minute long track Tummy proves this with it’s epic groove oriented serial killer perspective, but overall Turtlenecked avoids slipping into the trap of being self indulgent.
If ever there you were looking for something to illustrate the importance of not judging by appearances, Turtlenecked‘s latest release would be a good candidate, beneath the somewhat underwhelming album cover lies a varied and original album that channels influences that vary from The Sparks through to The Dresden Dolls, The Smiths and Wire. I can confidently state I won’t hear anything else even remotely like Vulture this year, and to be honest that probably goes for every other year as well as this is an idiosyncratic and original blend of indie cool and angular post punk
Vulture is now available on extremely limited edition vinyl and download formats via Good Cheer Records.
You can order and stream Vulture via Turtlenecked‘s Bandcamp here
Exploding In Sound Records recently announced that Milked‘s debut album, Death On Mars, will be released on the 30th June as the second instalment in their ongoing EIS Tape Club. Formed by former Geronimo! guitarist and vocalist Kelly Johnson following their split back in 2015, he began creating solo music as Milked, Death On Mars promises to expand on Geronimo!‘s fuzzy post-punk and post-hardcore sludge.
You can subscribe to the EIS Tape Club here
The video for the track White Punks can be viewed below Read More…
Hundredth‘s daring new full length, Rare, is out today via Hopeless Records. The album is now available for purchase and streaming, Rare features the South Carolina band’s dramatic sound change from aggressive hardcore to a dynamic blend of lush shoegaze and driving post-punk. Hundredth will be supporting Rare all summer long on the Vans Warped Tour with more tour dates to be announced soon.
Rain Follows The PlowSelf Released
By AJ Phink
(the) Medicine Theory have now been with us for the last decade and the duo have now self released their latest EP, Rain Follows The Plow, today, the 16th June 2017, the latest release is the band’s fifth studio recording, and it follows on from their last release, 2014’s Like An Old Man EP. Rain Follows The Plow has taken a distinctly different turn to their last release, it feels more focused and coherent, along with this newfound focus there seems to be something of the night inherent in their new material, their songs have always tended towards darker subject matter but this latest EP seems to be even more foreboding than before.
The Rain Follows The Plow EP contains the raw stripped down combination of post-punk and post rock that (the) Medicine Theory have been developing for the last ten years, the ominous opener, Choke, sets the tone for the EP with claustrophobic and sinister undertones, a feeling that characterises the whole of the Rain Follows The Plow EP. The sparse and stripped down Promise is if anything an even darker number, and it continues with (the) Medicine Theory continuing to take you ever further into their dark narrative, one step at a time. With this portentous and sinister release (the) Medicine Theory have unleashed what for me is easily their finest material to date
With this release (the) Medicine Theory have produced an EP that resembles the soundtrack to the mental anguish of someone descending into their own personal darkness, but don’t take that as a negative, as this is an accomplished EP that manages to capture the darker side of post punk and combines it with a post rock sensibility to create something that is truly compelling and disturbing. Rain Follows The Plow carries more than a hint of menace in the dark narrative style that accompanies the stripped down soundtrack, we all need something to satisfy the dark corner of psyche that whispers to us in the night, and Rain Follows The Plow is the perfect accompaniment to those moments.
The Rain Follows The Plow EP can be ordered and streamed via Bandcamp here
Pillow TalkNo Sleep Records
By AJ Phink
Canada’s Pine are the newest signing to No Sleep Records, and it seems the band have wasted no time in brining out their first release for the label, the Pillow Talk EP. The EP is now available on vinyl, on a limited edition pink with green swirl variant, as well as being available digitally. Pine offer a unique mix of post punk intensity that is blended with influences ranging from emo to shoegaze that brings a unique combination that’s as refreshing and cathartic as it is nostalgic.
Dolya opens with a mellow emotive slice of post punk influenced shoegaze, ethereal vocals combine with a gorgeous dream like melody to create a blissed out introduction to Pine that just washes over you. Viable ups the ante, but despite the more strident beat it maintains the dream like quality of the opening number with it’s delicate multi layered vocals, whereas (Un)rest delivers the kind of song you get the feeling the Pillow Talk EP has been building up to, a perfect dreamscape that has a subtle intensity that blends perfectly into the penultimate track, Jilt. Blue Jacket closes the EP with a truly epic and mellow finale that brings the Pillow Talk EP to a subtle crescendo.
If your tastes are towards snarling punk rock then the Pillow Talk EP won’t be for you, but for me this is an EP for those mellow moments after a late night that has unexpectedly become a very early morning, it’s subtle intensity is strangely beguiling and the vocal delivery from Darlene Deschamps is one that is hypnotic and entrancing, and it is backed up by a lush soundscape. There are post punk influences aplenty on the intriguing EP, but it avoids recreating the past and instead they mark out their own territory with an original and blissed out EP, and this is a release that come the right moment will be one that you’ll be glad that you own.
SeafoamBig Scary Monsters Records
By AJ Phink
Leeds based duo Kamikaze Girls released their debut album, Seafoam, a few days ago on June 9th, the album, which follows on from last years critically acclaimed Sad EP, has been issued via Big Scary Monsters Records in Europe and Wiretap Records in North America. The album marks a shift away from the Sad EP, whilst Seafoam maintains their commitment to political and social change, it demonstrates a broader range of musical influences and styles that doesn’t diminish the impact of their brutally honest and personal lyrics, rather it makes the new album feel somehow more focused and accessible, and this is important for a band whose message is one that I think needs be heard.
Seafoam kicks off with the dark and haunting One Young Man that segues into the intense Berlin, this was the lead single from the album and you can see why it was chosen as the track to grab your attention. There seems to be a more confrontational attitude to the songs, a change that is exemplified on the intense KG Goes To The Pub, a track that challenges attitudes and stereotypes with an enviable level of venom and fury, but this is counterbalanced by tracks that display a greater level of subtlety and harmony. Tracks like the superb Unhealthy Love channel northern post punk influences whilst still lyrically packing as much of a punch, I Don’t Want To Be Sad Forever comes across as a manifesto for much needed change before the bonus track, Anxious, lays bare the realities of managing mental health issues.
From the start it’s clear that a lot has changed since the release of their Sad EP last year, Kamikaze Girls sound like a band whose confidence has grown and their mix of punk, riot grrrl, shoegaze and post punk gives them a unique place in the British punk scene. Whilst the Sad EP sounded like an act of catharthis, Seafoam in comparison comes across as coming from a more hopeful place, issues are still confronted, a change of perspective doesn’t mean that Kamikaze Girls have in anyway abandoned their principles or the attitude that lies at the heart of the band, this just sounds like they have come to terms with the past and are now focused on confronting the future head on.
The Beautiful StoriesDine Alone Records
By AJ Phink
Sweden’s INVSN have released their new album, The Beautiful Stories, today, it was originally released earlier this year in their homeland on Woah Dad! Records, but today marks the first release of the album outside of their native Scandinavia and it is now available via their new international home, Dine Alone Records. INVSN are a band born of the Swedish punk and alternative scenes, their line up features members of Masshysteri, Tiger Forest Cat, Deportees, DS-13, Refused and The (International) Noise Conspiracy, The Beautiful Stories is their sophomore album and it follows on from their critically acclaimed self titled debut that was released in 2013.
Immer Zu opens with a distinctly post punk feel, it’s a track that recalls Joy Division, The Cure and Siouxsie And The Banshees and it veers between sparse verses and intense momens and rises to an irresistible chorus. This is a style that carries across the entirety of The Beautiful Stories, it’s an album that is informed by the intense angular post punk influences that populate all seven tracks with a moody and atmospheric feel. Over recent years I’ve found many post punk releases to be somewhat formulaic, with many bands merely adopting the style and attempt to recreate it, whilst INVSN are undoubtedly influenced by the same bands this is no pale imitation, INVSN bring the post punk influences right up to date and as a result they have brought something new to the genre.
The Beautiful Stories is a dark and atmospheric album that is born of post punk, but it’s combined with the collective members of INVSN‘s experience to bring new life to a scene that all to often wallows in the past. The Beautiful Stories is an accomplished and original album, yes of course you can hear the obvious influences, in particular there’s an obvious comparison to Siouxsie Sioux in some of the vocal deliveries, but this is an original dark hypnotic release that grows on you with every listen, and it is one that deserves to be heard beyond the confines of the Scandinavian borders.
You can purchase The Beautiful Stories via Dine Alone Records on CD, vinyl and digital formats here
(The) Medicine Theory will release the Rain Follows The Plow EP on the 16th June 2017. The EP is the band’s fifth studio recording and it continues the raw stripped down heavy post-punk approach to songwriting that they are known for, with a visceral focus on storytelling. (The) Medicine Theory formed in 2007 with the writing duo of Jeff Irvine and Tyson Schroeder, whilst the band has had many incarnations they have always stayed true to their initial mission, to create music that they enjoy, now in a Punk Site exclusive they have unveiled the hard hitting track Choke that is taken from the forthcoming EP.
You can stream the track Choke here
Atlanta’s Pallas will release their self-titled debut album this Friday, May 26th via Drop Medium Records, ahead of the release the band are streaming the record in full. The young Atlanta post punk quartet have created a unique and challenging mini album that shows the band’s strength in manipulated repetition, art-rock expanse, and abrasive rhythmic shifts.
You can pre-order the self titled debut album here
You can stream Pallas‘s self titled album here
Atlanta’s Pallas will release their self-titled debut album on May 26th via Drop Medium Records and they’ve now released a stream of the track Cast A Lion, Cured A Crow. The young Atlanta post-punk quartet have created a unique and challenging mini-album that shows the band’s strength in manipulated repetition, art-rock expanse, and abrasive rhythmic shifts.
You can pre-order the self titled debut album here
Cast A Lion, Cured A Crow can be streamed here
Atlanta’s Pallas are getting ready to release their self-titled debut album on May 26th via Drop Medium Records and today they are sharing the track Render (Location 13). The young Atlanta post-punk quartet have created a unique and challenging mini-album that shows the band’s strength is manipulated repetition and abrasive rhythmic shifts. Led by Danielle Brutto’s sharp and sinister howls, there’s a cold sense of calculated chaos throughout the band’s swerving punk movements, a sound that is tightly wound and volatility explosive.
You can view the video for Render (Location 13) below Read More…
Southampton’s Gun Shy draw influence from genres ranging from post punk and doom to post rock, and they have now announced their new EP, The Long Dance, is due for release on May 12th via Wrong Way Round Records on both cassette and digital formats. Gun Shy continue to ask their followers to remain vigilant and to keep watching the skies.
The video for Test You Like Gold can be viewed below Read More…
True MoonLovely Records
By AJ Phink
Sweden’s True Moon released their self titled debut album in their native Sweden at the tail end of 2016, now the band are looking to spread their wings beyond Scandinavia with True Moon finally receiving it’s deserved international release on the 28th April 2017 via Lovely Records. Sweden has long been known a breeding ground for noted bands producing upbeat pop music and conversely for releases from the dark and dissonant underbelly of rock ‘n roll, True Moon‘s debut album is one that definitely fits firmly into the latter category.
From the dark opening chords of Voodoo it’s clear that this is an album that’s born of the post punk and gothic scenes that appeared in the wake of initial punk explosion, the influences are easy to pick up on this, dark brooding Peter Hook bass lines sit alongside dark intense post punk guitar riffs, with the whole package being topped off with a mesmerising vocal delivery by Karolina Engdahl. For those of you who have previously spent nights, and the early hours of the morning, in sweaty alternative night clubs then True Moon‘s debut album will be something that will be simultaneously familiar and new, as this is a contemporary and original take on the gothic and alternative scenes that first emerged from the batcave back in the eighties.
There is a hefty influence on this release from the likes of Joy Division, Killing Joke, Siouxsie And The Banshees, The Sisters of Mercy, The Mission and The Cure, but this is an album that isn’t embedded in the past, True Moon will appeal to fans of their contemporaries such as The Duke Spirit, White Lies, The Raveonettes, Calling All Astronauts and The Sounds. True Moon have produced an impressive album that for me recalled hazy nights spent in Manchester’s legendary Banshee nightclub, but more important than my reminiscences is the fact that this is an album that brings something new to a scene that has become stifled by endless reunion tours and nostalgia.
Monkey See Monkey DoSelf Released
By AJ Phink
Alternative combo Super 73 have returned to the fold with their new single, Monkey See Monkey Do, that is due out on the 14th April. The Midlands based quartet have previously received glowing comparisons to everyone from acts as diverse as Coheed & Cambria to Biffy Clyro to Taking Back Sunday. Super73 come armed with a barrage of powerful riffs, melodic vocals and unique angular phrasing that would set them apart from the pack, if there was a pack to run with, as this is as unique a release as I’ve heard this year, and they’re pretty much out there on their own.
Monkey See Monkey Do kicks off in a laid back almost jazzy style that slowly builds up, and just at the point you start to get worried, the song kicks off in earnest with a strident drum beat that is accompanied by a hypnotic spiky riff. Super 73 are a hard band to pin down, one moment is mellow and jazzy with harmonic vocals, the next it’s bouncing with intense energy levels that build up to an almost hardcore intensity, before gently fading away again. This is a single that leaves you thinking “what the fuck just happened?”, then you find yourself playing it again… and again.
Super73 combine alt rock with post punk, the result of this unlikely marriage is an impressive and unique hybrid that makes me wish that there was more to hear of Monkey See Monkey Do than the radio edit version I received for review. This is an idiosyncratic and addictive release, and if this is what Super73 can cram into a three and half minute single then I can’t wait to see what they can do with a full album.
Super73’s website can be found here
(The) Medicine Theory will release the Rain Follows the Plow EP on the 16th June 2017. The EP is the band’s fifth studio recording and it continues the raw stripped down heavy post-punk approach to songwriting that they are known for, with a visceral focus on storytelling. (The) Medicine Theory formed in 2007 with the writing duo of Jeff Irvine and Tyson Schroeder, whilst the band has had many incarnations they have always stayed true to their initial mission, to create music that they enjoy.
Post punk pioneers The Nightingales are heading out on a UK tour at the end of the month in support of their latest six track EP, Become Not Becoming, that is available on ten inch vinyl and download formats and was released via Tiny Global Productions on 27 January 2017.The EP features art by Konrad Wallinger, and is their first record to feature James “Bo” Smith on guitar.
The Nightingales website can be found here
Vancouver’s Blessed are getting ready to release II on April 28th via Kingfisher Bluez (Canada) and Cointoss Records (US) and they are sharing the second single from the EP, Body. Blessed‘s artful post-punk and twitchy indie rock sound has earned the band comparisons to everyone from Television and The Fall to Ought and Radiohead.
Blessed‘s extensive North American tour dates can be viewed below Read More…
RaysTrouble In Mind Records
By AJ Phink
Rays are a band that is comprised of four Bay area music veterans whose current and past musical projects include local bands of note such as The World, Life Stinks, Violent Change, and Dadfag, that means Rays are something of an underground supergroup that was born of the golden states dark recesses. The band’s self titled debut album was released at the end of last month and is now available on CD and good old fashioned black vinyl via Trouble In Mind Records
The opening plodding discordant chords of Attic bring to mind the more experimental side of the UK’s post punk scene and the fledgling indie scene that followed in it’s wake, Rays have released an album that has come distinctly out of leftfield, there is nothing predictable and the album takes you on a rambling discordant journey across it’s brief run time of a shade under twenty five minutes. Tracks such as Gambler and Theatre Of Lunacy provide the album’s most coherent moments, but for the main part this is a album that channels the more idiosyncratic elements from punk, post punk and the early indie scene.
Rays self titled debut comes across as the troubled offspring of post punk bands such as The Fall and Wire, along with a fair influence from the UK indie scene of early eighties, the whole album has a loose shambolic feel to it and you have to admire an album that seems to give no fucks whatsoever about commercial intent, this is the album Rays wanted to make and there is clearly no compromise. This is not an album that sits easily in your head, there are too many dark and discordant twists and turns for this to be a regular on your playlist, but when the moment is right you’ll be glad this is sitting and lurking in the corner of your collection.
Rays release their self titled album today on Trouble In Mind Records, the Oakland band is comprised of four Bay area music veterans whose current and past musical projects include local bands of note such as The World, Life Stinks, Violent Change and Dadfag. On Rays debut album the band spins eleven tunes of wiry, urgent post-punk that has it roots firmly planted in the nihilistic apathy of 70 & 80’s punk, Australian punk both past & present and the addictive strum of 80’s & 90’s New Zealand and Flying Nun pop.
The video for the track Made Of Shadows can be viewed below Read More…
Forged in the depths of the outermost reaches of existence itself, Gun Shy was first uncovered taking temporary residence in Southampton in January of the Earth year 2016 before announcing their First Transmission, which was released in May via Failure By Design Records, a five song audio transmission that drew influence from genres ranging from post-punk and doom to post rock. Gun Shy asks its followers to remain vigilant and to keep watching the skies as their new EP, The Long Dance, is due for release on Earth date May 12th 2017 via Wrong Way Round Records on both cassette and digital formats.
You can watch the video for the tracks Whilst You Execute and In Perfect Silence below Read More…
Rebel Dykes is a documentary about a bunch of kick ass post-punk women who lived the life in London in the 1980s, the documentary film is being made because the history of the London Rebel Dykes of the 1980s is in danger of being forgotten. Rebel Dykes created their own world, made their own rules, and refused to be ignored. We can’t let history tidy them away. They were a bunch of kickass women in leather jackets who made their own punk bands, zines and squats. They were the first generation of sex positive outlaw women, and nothing has been quite the same since.
You can read more about, and view the trailer for, Rebel Dykes below
By AJ Phink
Somewhere in the middle of Florida is UV-TV, they write melancholy pop songs that are a mass of jagged and abrasive edges that combine strong hooks with infectious chainsaw guitar riffs, a sound that has drawn comparisons to Black Tambourine, The Jesus And Mary Chain and The Shop Assistants, but for me there’s also a hefty dose of two of my home town’s, Manchester UK, favourite sons woven into their DNA. Glass was self-recorded over a hectic two days in a retired Gainesville train station, and it was released via Deranged Records on the 10th March.
From the opening hyperactive blast of Wasting Away, the finest minute of buzzsaw guitars you’ll hear this year, I had a good feeling about this album, and my gut feeling about this release was right on all eleven counts. The first six tracks are all sparkling amphetamine laced punk rock that should have you bouncing round the room, it’s only as you get deeper into the album’s latter stages that they branch out and their other influences become apparent. Take It All has a distinctly post punk feel to it, whilst Severed Hand and the title track bring a darker element to Glass. The penultimate track, FEAR, channels the authentic feel and sound of the first wave of UK punk bands, whilst the epic Dissolve closes things in a hectic squall of feedback and noise that builds to a crescendo that is a fitting end to what for me is undoubtedly going to be one of my favourite albums of 2017.
This Is All PretendAnimal Style Records
By AJ Phink
It’s been two years since Pillow Talk‘s last release, their new album is one that has been shaped by singer Joshua Cannon‘s personal experiences, including family bereavement and the toll this took on him over the last few years, but he has channelled these negative events into the creation of This Is All Pretend, a release that follows on from their 2015 EP, What We Should Have Said. Pillow Talk released their debut album via Animal Style Records on the 10th March 2017, and it is available on vinyl, on gold and red and white swirl variants, and digital formats.
Monogamy eases you into This Is All Pretend with ethereal tones, echo drenched guitars and synths that are stretched across a strident drum beat that belies the mellow feel of the opening track, This is All Pretend comes across as the kind of late night mellow soundscape you need in your life from time to time. It’s a release that washes over you with waves of treble and echo, there is no upbeat track to lift the album, it remains in a firmly mellow state across it’s ten tracks and thirty five minute run time, whilst this is not necessarily a bad thing it meant that I found that the tracks tended to blend into each other, not in an unpleasant way, but there is no moment that makes you sit up and take notice.
I can’t help feel that this release owes a hefty debt to the mellower side of the post punk bands of the eighties such as The Cure and The Chameleons, but under their placid exterior there is fire that is fuelled by injustice, they released the track Little Worries ahead of the album’s release to support organisations that are working to combat the current US administrations policies. This Is All Pretend is a natural progression from Pillow Talk‘s previous releases, their name is well chosen as this is an album that’s perfect for the late night’s that merge into early mornings, although on a personal note the use of auto tune, even though it’s used for effect rather than to hide deficiencies, did detract from the album and was a jarring element that I never like to hear used.
You can purchase This Is All Pretend here
By AJ Phink
Hailing from Leuven, Belgium, Brutus create a pummelling, meteor-shower of sound, they mix intense black metal blast beats and math-rock flourishes with brash post rock tones and hardcore punk intensity, to make make a sound as monolithic and frantic as it is emotive and unique. Stefanie Mannaerts delivers both the beats and the vocals, a delivery that to me seems reminiscent of Penetration‘s Pauline Murray, alongside guitarist Stijn Vanhoegaerden‘s ethereal treble laced style and Peter Mulders’ powerful sub-frequency bass lines. Burst was released yesterday, the 24th February, and is now available via digital platforms, and on physical formats via Hassle Records.
Frantic opener March means that Burst hits the ground with pounding drums and a driving technical riff that’s juxtaposed against a soaring female vocal, this segues into All Alone that delivers more of the same, intricate riffs played at breakneck pace that are overlaid with an emotive female vocal, one that carries melody and sweetness one second and abruptly switches to a vocal straining rasp the next. This style occupies much of the album but there are tracks that deviate from their genre spanning hybrid, Drive stands out on the album, with it’s revved up post punk style and echo drenched guitars, a track that hints at an influence from the likes of The Chameleons, whilst the atmospheric Bird brings a more reflective downbeat element to the mix.
Brutus‘s sound spans everything from rock and punk through to math rock and hardcore, this kind of marriage is a hard trick to pull off, yet Brutus have managed it without breaking sweat. There are constant changes in the timing and pace, often during a single track, if this had been a straight up full tilt assault it would have become a repetitive technical exercise, but the creativity and unpredictability contained on this album mean that Brutus have delivered something unique on their debut release. The intensity of hardcore is married to the technical elements of math rock and the attitude and delivery of post hardcore to create a deceptively subtle and melodic debut release, one that simultaneously manages to be brash and heavy, making Burst an impressive and original debut
Iris JupiterOpen Door Records
By AJ Phink
Reviewing an album is always going to be a subjective exercise, but sometimes an album can be exactly what you need to hear and can reflect your mood, and there are few things better than finding a band that unexpectedly manages to match your state of mind. With that in mind this Southern Californian trio’s self titled debut landed in my inbox at exactly the right moment, it’s a downbeat, yet energetic, fuzzed out soundscape that is a hybrid of punk, hardcore, post punk and shoegaze that brings something unique and very welcome to 2017. Iris Jupiter‘s seven track offering follows on from 2016’s Zero Cool EP, that was released on Pacific Nature Records, it represents a logical progression from their initial lo-fi offering, everything sounds tighter and more refined, but crucially without losing the spirit of their debut release.
The opening track, Carly Beth, opens with a driven bass line that breaks down into a chorus that reflects pain and anguish, all the while this is accompanied by a twisted fuzzed out guitar line that encompasses punk and shoegaze, along with pulses of intense hardcore. Life Pile lets the bass line take the lead, with more than a hint that there’s a debt owed to Peter Hook‘s low slung influential bass style, before it explodes into heartfelt rage, a style that carries over into Mizar. Eat The Sap takes things into a darker place with a brief ode to isolation before we hit the glorious Ween (V4008), this track carries a hypnotic bass line and a piledriving guitar riff that abruptly segues into Science Is A Liar (Sometimes), this brings the pace of the album down with a melodic riff that builds to a climax with it’s anguished refrain of “feel the weight that’s pressing me down”. Solar Denial wraps things up with the heaviest riff on this impressive debut album, and it brings what has been an all too brief septet of slabs of heady dark fuzz to a close with a satisfying squall of feedback.
There’s a hefty influence from the likes of Joy Division, Smashing Punpkins and Placebo in their sound, but this is married to elements from punk, indie, shoegaze and emo that stops Iris Jupiter from being derivative of the bands that came before them. This impressive self titled album is delivered with a dark disturbed feel, and a genuine yearning rage and pain in the vocal delivery, that delivers something that is very much a product of 2017. Iris Jupiter have delivered the perfect soundtrack to those moments of doubt and introspection, but crucially I found that rather than encouraging you to wallow in dark places Iris Jupiter lift your mood. Their restrained rage is matched against an ominous distorted soundtrack, the end result is that this is a debut full length that is something to be treasured.
Iris Jupiter‘s self titled EP was released on the 13th January 2017 and can be ordered here
Iris Jupiter‘s web presence can be found here
Open Door Records will be releasing the self titled debut album from Southern California’s Iris Jupiter, the debut full length delivers a collision of down tuned power pop riffs and noisy shoegaze, that is shored up by steady beating pulses of hardcore. Iris Jupiter will be playing an album release show at VLHA, Pomona, CA on the 14th January with I’m Glad It’s You and The Total Bettys.
Iris Jupiter‘s website can be found here
Open Door Records have confirmed that they will be releasing the self titled debut album from Southern Californian trio Iris Jupiter, the debut full length promises to deliver a collision of down tuned power pop riffs and noisy shoegaze, that is shored up by steady beating pulses of hardcore. Iris Jupiter will be playing an album release show at VLHA, Pomona, CA on the 14th January with I’m Glad It’s You and The Total Bettys.
Iris Jupiter‘s self titled debut album can be pre-ordered here
Iris Jupiter‘s website can be found here
Basically Johnny MopedGerman Shepherd Records
By AJ Phink
This is the first release of 2017 from Manchester based independent label German Shepherd Records, Basically Johnny Moped is the new single from the Hamsters with the bands live favourite occupying the A-Side, coupled with the anarchic punk sea shanty, Freudian Ships. This is the long lost Hamsters single that was recorded and ready for release back in January 2015, it was scheduled for release as a double A-Sided vinyl single before label funding issues meant that the recording never saw the light of day, thankfully German Shepherd Records launched a rescue mission so at last it may be heard, and as a result it has finally surfaced today, the 6th January 2017
Basically Johnny Moped occupies the A-Side and it’s a track that celebrates the legendary outsider punk band, appropriately enough this is a single that is delivered in the experimental style of the some of the more eccentric outfits that the UK punk scene spawned four decades ago. The single weaves a condensed tale of the rise and fall of one punks largely forgotten bands, and it name checks a lot of their contemporaries and people who were involved in the band. It’s an entertaining and eccentric salute to a band that trod their own path, and it’s one that’s delivered in a style that’s a cross between the pub rock and early punk bands of the 1970’s. Freudian Ships occupies the AA-Side, this is a departure from the A-Side, it’s a deranged sea shanty concerning a hapless bunch of mutineers who end up adrift in both a physical and moral sense, it’s delivered in the same shambolic style as Basically Johnny Moped but as I’ve indicated it has more than a whiff of piracy and the high seas about it.
German Shepherd Records have a varied and unpredictable roster of bands and the Hamsters could not have found a better home for the release of this almost lost single. The Hamsters channel elements of the original punk attitude with a post punk style, as befits a band who were originally around in the late 1970’s, that is all delivered with a gruff eccentric approach that is not without it’s charms. If you have a love for the more experimental side of the UK punk and post punk scenes then Basically Johnny Moped would be a single that will make a fine addition to your collection. Basically Johnny Moped is now available for download via German Shepherd Records.
The German Shepherd Records Bandcamp can be found here
The Hamsters Facebook page can be located here