ThePunkSite.com

Hollerado Born Yesterday

Hollerado

Born Yesterday

Royal Mountain Records
By

Rating: 3.5/5

 
 

 

 

Toronto’s most energetic indie rockers, Hollerado, have released their new full length, Born Yesterday, today, the 21st April 2017,on Royal Mountain Records. The latest release continues a prolific pattern of releases that started with a series of demos and progressed to their debut album Record In A Bag in 2009, and continued with their 2013 sophomore release, White Paint, and the ambitious 111 Songs project in 2015, where Hollerado wrote custom songs for specific fans. It was this exhaustive and continuous songwriting project that built the working framework for the release of Born Yesterday.

Born Yesterday starts with the high energy power pop of the title track, and you couldn’t really ask for a finer start to an album than this fuzzy hook filled opener, the album takes a downturn with the slower yearning number, Don’t Shake, and continues to veer wildly between styles, from the glam rock influenced tracks Brick Wall and I Got You, the sparse pop of Grief Money and Rollerskater, shining upbeat tracks such as Sorry You’re Alright  and If It Is Love, and of course further helpings of power pop in the shape of Eloise and Better Than the Cure. All the while Born Yesterday boasts an infectious guitar hook littered style with perfect vocal harmonies

To me Hollerado resemble a union between the stripped down power pop of The Thermals and the melodies and harmonies of Weezer, whilst Born Yesterday never quite hits the heights it promised on the first few tracks, especially the stunning title track, this is an original and varied album that would be well worth investigating for fans of the aforementioned bands and the likes of Silver Sun and Japandroids. Hollerado have released a catchy and eclectic mix that encompasses just about everything from the indie scene of the last thirty or so years, Born Yesterday is clearly a misleading album title as to produce an album this varied and consistent indicates they certainly weren’t.

Born Yesterday can be ordered digitally via iTunes and on physical formats here

The Beat Release Stream Of Long Lost Track

Paul Collins BeatLegendary power pop band The Beat will re-issue their two long lost EP’s on one handy album, this will be the first re-issue in over 30 years, the album will contain all the tracks from 1983’s To Beat Or Not To Beat and the follow-up EP, 1985’s Long Time Gone. The album will be released on vinyl, CD, cassette and digital formats on April 28th via Lolipop Records.

You can stream the track Always Got You On My Mind via Vive Le Rock Magazine here

The Lolipop Records website is here and Paul Collin‘s solo tour dates can be viewed below Read More…

Gnash Rambler Release Self Titled Debut Album

PrintVancouver’s Gnash Rambler released their debut album on the 31st March. The self titled debut album contains their unique brand of hooky punk rock and metal tinged power pop. Gnash Rambler‘s debut album is available via Bandcamp and also from all the main digital streaming services and retailers. A review of the album will appear later today on The Punk Site.

Gnash Rambler‘s debut album can be pre-ordered here

You can stream the track Man Over that is taken from the album here

Gnash Rambler’s Debut Album To Be Released On Friday

PrintVancouver’s Gnash Rambler are releasing their debut album this Friday, the 31st March. The self titled debut album contains their unique brand of hooky punk rock and metal tinged power pop. Gnash Rambler‘s debut album will be available via Bandcamp and also from all the main digital streaming services and retailers.

Gnash Rambler‘s debut album can be pre-ordered here

You can stream the track Man Over that is taken from the album here

Jess Kemp Vondelpark Launch

Jess Kemp - Vondelpark Single Launch Party

Sacred Trinity Church, Salford, UK

10th March 2017
By

Rating: 3.5/5

 
 

 

 

Jess Kemp 10th March - David GormanI always feels a bit strange watching a gig in a church as these are not places I’ve made a habit of attending, but religion seems to be on the decline and they have to keep the lights on somehow, so the result is there’s a bar and a healthy turn out for the sold out concert to mark the release of Jess Kemp‘s Vondelpark single at this small historical church that lies on the boundary between Salford and Manchester. David Gorman opens proceedings with a delicate acoustic set, his fine picked guitar work is accompanied by a mournful cello, whilst this isn’t the hyperactive start I’m used to at concerts he manages to get some early evening audience participation, and his thought provoking alt folk marks the start to a genre spanning evening.

Jess Kemp 10th March - Sound Of ThievesJess Kemp introduces Sound Of Thieves who are a band that offer a distinct contrast to the opening act. They are a duo that offer a set of bass augmented technology, I’m unsure how these things work but live loops and some fine vocals that are accompanied by a dub heavy bass is something I haven’t encountered before. I have no idea where to start trying to describe this duo, the sound they make is one that’s unique and they are also unique amongst the live acts I’ve encountered. The combination of the technical alchemy, ethereal vocals and dub bass is unlike anything else out there, the best description I can come up with is dub infused gothic electronica.

Jess Kemp 10th March 1The Sacred Trinity Church has drawn a much bigger turn out than I suspect it’s regular Sunday gatherings attract, and the two foot thick stone walls ensure that the venue is approaching boiling point by the time Jess Kemp takes to the stage. Some mellow acoustic strains mark the start of her set, before the lights flare and the launch party for the Vondelpark single kicks off in earnest. Her emotional vocal growl adds a unique element to her material, and it’s just one of the components that makes the impressive, and deeply personal, material stand out in Manchester’s crowded indie scene.

Jess Kemp 10th March 2Throughout her set Jess Kemp blends power pop with other influences that are all delivered with a trademark style, and it’s style that marks Jess Kemp out as one of Manchester’s up and coming singer songwriters, and it’s one that has attracted an enthusiastic and vocal audience for tonight’s sold out show that celebrates the launch of the Vondelpark single. Her music is a soulful mix of rock, power pop and indie with touches of heartland rock, and even hints of country and rock ‘n roll are thrown into the mix, and the whole package is all delivered with her own personal and powerful touch.

Jess Kemp 10th March 3Of course new material is revealed tonight, including the anthemic No Shouting, that for me is the kind of song that Jess Kemp does best, a driving power pop number informed by personal experiences. Finally we get the moment that tonight has building up to as she gives the freshly released Vondelpark single it’s debut live airing. This is another upbeat indie fuelled floor filler, it’s a song that catalogues the bands joyous experiences in the fine city of Amsterdam, a city that has a reputation for making a positive impact on anyone who visits it, and on the basis of the new single it would appear that Jess Kemp is no exception to this tradition.

Jess Kemp 10th March 4The rowdy vocal crowd demand an encore and they are duly rewarded, in some ways the final song from tonight’s show is the antithesis of the previous track, whereas Vondelpark is a celebration of the positive impact of a city, the title track from her debut Camden EP is definitely not a love letter to that renound part of London, and it marks a fine end to what has been a triumphant showcase for Jess Kemp. Tonight has seen an eclectic mix of acts topped by an impressive headline set, on the basis of my experience this evening maybe I should go to church more often, providing its not too early on a Sunday, and there are bands and a bar.

Jess Kemp 10th March Sacred TrinityJess Kemp‘s Facebook page can be found here

The Camden EP and Vondelpark single are available via Spotify and iTunes

The Sound Of Thieves Facebook page is located here

David Gorman‘s Facebook presence can be found here

Photography is by Dean Unsworth, his Instagram account is located here,

You can click on any of Dean’s photos to view a slide show of the images

Andy J Gallagher Boy Racer

Andy J. Gallagher

Boy Racer / I Don't Wanna Be Like You

JAC64 Records
By

Rating: 4/5

 
 

 

 

Following in the wake of the first single, Sheena’s Big Night Out, from the eagerly anticipated album, Ego, Andy J. Gallagher  has now released another double a-side single featuring the tracks Boy Racer and I Don’t Wanna Be Like You, the single has been released on JAC64 Records today, the 20th March 2017. Ego will be Andy J. Gallagher‘s sophomore album, it follows on from 2009’s Helicopter, Dolphin, Submarine, an album that is now available as a free download via Andy J. Gallagher‘s website.

Boy Racer occupies the a-side, it’s a track that channels the spirit of The Libertines with a spirited chunk of power pop fuelled indie rock, and it marks a damn fine start to the single, however for me the star of the show is the flip side. I Don’t Wanna Be Like You is a darker composition, that whilst still carrying Andy J. Gallagher‘s pop sensibility, has an element of menace and discord that possesses more of a punk rock spirit than the a-side, or the previous single.

Once more Andy J. Gallagher has teamed up with former member of The Damned and The Phantom Chords, and more recently solo artist, Roman Jugg, and their partnership is one that seems to almost effortlessly produce a heady mix of punk and power pop that maintains a sparkling pop sensibility. For me Boy Racer, and especially it’s flip side I Don’t Wanna Be Like You, is a step forward from the first impressive single, Sheena’s Big Night Out, from his forthcoming album, and it’s a one that makes Ego an even more eagerly anticipated release.

Helicopter, Dolphin, Submarine can be downloaded for free here

Boy Racer is available on limited edition CD here

Louise Distras Album Fundraiser Update

louise-distras-bowieLouise Distras‘ fan fundraiser for her new album has reached the halfway mark of it’s goal, she has now recorded two brand new tracks for her, as yet untitled, second album and her new songs will be shared with pledgers very soon. In addition to this Louise has another twenty brand new songs written, demo’d and ready to be recorded as soon as the fundraiser reaches 100%. If you haven’t got involved yet you can help bring Louise Distras‘ new album to life by pledging today.

You can pledge for Louise Distras‘ new album here and details of her spring tour can be found here

Sam Coffey And The Iron Lungs To Release Self Titled LP

Sam Coffey And The Iron Lungs STToday Toronto’s Sam Coffey And The Iron Lungs have announced their signing to Burger Records and Dine Alone Records for the release of their forthcoming self titled LP with the album’s first single, Talk 2 Her. The song is a fitting introduction to the band’s unbridled power pop, bringing considerable bombast and a mountain of hooks with a song that Coffey describes as being about the importance of communication and emotional honesty. Sam Coffey & The Iron Lungs will be released on Burger Records and Dine Alone Records on July 28th.  

You can stream Talk 2 Her via the AV Club here

Sam Coffey And The Iron Lungs tour dates can be viewed below Read More…

Empty Lungs Dont Get It

Empty Lungs

Don't Get It

Hidden Pony Records
By

Rating: 5/5

 
 

 

 

Empty Lungs released the Don’t Get It EP yesterday, the 10th of March 2017, via the Canadian imprint, Hidden Pony Records. Empty Lungs are a band that captures the angst and protest spirit of punk rock, and blend it with the hooks and melody born of the indie rock and powerpop of the nineties. They were originally formed in late 2011, since that time there has been a string of self released EP’s and singles, as well as tours across Europe and America, including playing THE FEST in Florida for the last three years, that’s deservedly earned them an international fanbase.

The opening title track smacks you squarely between the eyes with a heavyweight infectious hooky riff, and follows this up with a chorus that instantly embeds itself in your frontal lobes and refuses to be evicted, Losing It. Finding It picks up exactly where the opening number left off, it boasts a perfect pounding riff that is accompanied by urgent vocals. The closing track, Fragile, makes this a perfect trio of songs, it brings the tempo down very slightly, but it retains all the urgency and vibrancy that were the hallmarks of the first two tracks. To say this is an impressive EP would be an understatement, Don’t Get It is that rare beast of a perfect release, there is not a single thing about this EP that I would change.

Don’t Get It contains equal measures of the spirit of Husker Du, Ramones, The Wildhearts and Therapy?, it has the same kind of urgency, energy and melody, but whilst you can hear the influences, Empty Lungs have very much stamped their own personality onto this release. The insistent infectious title track is the best new song I’ve heard this year, a track that’s been playing on repeat since I first heard it, you can see exactly why the Canadian based Hidden Pony Records made them their first European signing. Empty Lungs are a fine addition to Belfast’s proud musical heritage, and are a band that you need to introduce yourself to as Don’t Get It is a perfect three track EP.

Don’t Get It was released on the 10th March on vinyl and download and is available via the usual retailers

The Hidden Pony Records website can be found here

Empty Lungs Facebook page can be found here

Paul Collins’ Beat To Reissue Two Long Lost EP’s

Paul Collins BeatLegendary power pop band The Beat will re-issue their two long lost EP’s on one handy album, this will be the first re-issue in over 30 years, the album will contain all the tracks from 1983’s To Beat Or Not To Beat and the follow-up EP, 1985’s Long Time Gone. The album will be released on vinyl, CD, cassette and digital formats on April 28th via Lolipop Records.

You can stream the track All Over The World via Blurt Magazine here

The Lolipop Records website is here and Paul Collin‘s solo tour dates can be viewed below Read More…

Punk Site Exclusive: Free Download From Gnash Rambler

PrintAll great bands have a great name and Vancouver’s Gnash Rambler are no exception, their name is a combination of that of a classic car and vocalist Nick Venditti’s habit of gnashing his teeth, this unique moniker, along with their brand of hooky punk rock and metal tinged power pop produces a unique musical vision. The band’s debut album is due out on March 31st and they have teamed up with The Punk Site for an exclusive free download of their second single, Man Over. Gnash Rambler‘s debut album will be available via Bandcamp via all the main digital retailers and streaming services.

Gnash Rambler‘s debut album can be pre-ordered here

You can stream and download Man Over here

HAM MF

Heart Attack Man

The Manson Family

You Did This Records / Triple Crown Records
By

Rating: 4/5

 
 

 

 

Ohio’s Heart Attack Man originally started as a solo recording project for singer and guitarist Eric Egan back in 2013, since then they have gained a further member, drummer Adam Paduch, released two EPs’, their self titled debut and 2015’s critically acclaimed Acid Rain EP, and now they have released their debut full length, the ominously titled album The Manson Family. The album was released via a partnership between You Did This Records and Triple Crown Records yesterday, the 3rd March 2017, on CD, swamp green vinyl and digital formats.

The Manson Family is an album of restrained downbeat power pop, it varies between hooky fuzz laden riffs that sit alongside introspective touches, often in the same song. It’s not until you’re well and truly into the album that they kick into gear and up the ante with the wonderful Blood Orange Sun. This track was streamed ahead of the album’s release, and you can see why this was the track they chose, although it’s thunder is stolen by the wonderful Surrounded By Morons, for me this is easily the album’s finest moment, it’s a fuzzy dark sarcastic rant against modern society that is a perfect cathartic soundtrack for those that dwell in an urban sprawl.

Heart Attack Man are the first signing of the union between two fiercely independent record labels, and it must be said that their debut full length hits the spot nicely. The Manson Family was recorded with Ian Farmer, of Modern Baseball fame, his influence on the production is certainly present, but his style doesn’t overly insinuate itself into the album, as Heart Attack Man definitely have their own character. The Manson Family is a potent mix of melody and enormous hooks, when this is combined with the rage and grace that is present in their compositions it makes this an album, that like it’s namesake, is best not ignored, but, unlike it’s namesake, this is something that you’d actually want to appear in your house.

The Manson Family can be pre-ordered via Triple Crown Records here

Knitts Retreat

The Knitts

Retreat

Knitting Factory Records
By

Rating: 4/5

 
 

 

 

Originating in an unassuming industrial area of California there lie a dozen neatly stacked repurposed shipping containers, one of these, the doors of which feature on the album cover, is the home of The Knitts, a band that has spent the last five years playing the live circuit and releasing multiple EPs and singles, before finally recording their debut album in North Hollywood and New York in a frantic week. Their debut full length album, Retreat, will be available on digital and streaming formats from tomorrow, March 3rd 2017, via Knitting Factory Records. 

Opening number, She Likes The Idea Of Gold, takes melodic power pop and infuses it with a sixties sensibility, this mix of styles is something that remains in place throughout the album, they are a band that would wear their influences on their sleeves if they were long enough. Hold Steady Pretty Lady and We Got Time takes the album into a more energetic bouncy place where the punkier side of their personality comes to the fore, before we head back to the garage with Personal Pyramid. The album continues to tread an idiosyncratic path across it’s twelve tracks, encompassing all manner of influences from the dawn of rock ‘n roll onwards.

The Knitts sound takes in a broad range of influences, from sixties psyche and garage pioneers such as The Seeds, through the seventies punk rock explosion with the Ramones and onto the later power pop and indie influences such as The Strokes, all of these elements are skilfully blended on The Knitts debut album. Whilst I doubt there are many people that will love every moment on Retreat, I can pretty much guarantee that there is something that everyone will love, The Knitts have made a unique album that refuses to be pigeonholed or attached to a specific scene, Retreat is an original and impressive debut release that deserves to be heard, and it is something that I’d recommend taking some time out to experience.

The Knitts website can be found here and their Facebook page is here

The Knitting Factory Records website can be found here

Louise Distras Confirms Tour And Festival Dates For 2017

Louise Distras Feb 17Louise Distras has announced a string of headline shows and festival dates for 2017, she is also currently working on the follow up to her critically acclaimed debut album, Dreams From The Factory Floor, and has launched a fundraising campaign for the new album.

Details of the Fundraising campaign for the new Louise Distras album can be found here

Louise’s Facebook page is here and her website can be found here

You can view Louise’s tour dates below

Read More…

Louise Distras Announces Spring Tour And Festival Dates

Louise Distras Feb 17Following a sold out UK tour supporting The King Blues, Louise Distras has announced a string of headline shows and festival dates for 2017, she is currently working on the follow up to her critically acclaimed debut, Dreams From The Factory Floor, and has been championed by Kerrang! Magazine as a ‘Star of 2017’. 

Louise Distras‘ official website can be found here

Louise Distras‘ Spring tour and Summer festival dates can be viewed below Read More…

mohawk radio deaf institute feb 17

Mohawk Radio 'Shoot From The Hip' EP Launch

The Deaf Institute, Manchester, UK

February 10th 2017
By

Rating: 4.5/5

 
 

 

 

Tonight The Deaf Institute is hosting is the launch for Mohawk Radio‘s latest EP, Shoot From The Hip, the band have toured relentlessly and built up an impressive following, this has resulted in tonight’s show being completely sold out, an even more impressive feat when you consider that Mohawk Radio have done everything on their own terms. The crowd for tonight’s sold out show is certainly an eclectic one, boasting an intriguing mix of everything from indie kids to old rockers, this diversity is reflected in the quartet of bands that are on display tonight, a line up that makes tonight as much a showcase for the thriving musical environment in the North West of the UK as it is an event to celebrate the release of Mohawk Radio‘s latest EP.

Mohawk Radio DI Katie MacTonight’s journey to catch Mohawk Radio at the Deaf Institute didn’t start well, gridlock near the venue means that I’m running late, when we finally reach the venue the combination of new Converse and a wet pavement leads to further drama, but ripped jeans are in fashion and a few more scars aren’t going to make much difference at my age. I dust myself down and finally limp into the venue to catch the tail end of the opening set by Katie Mac. From the brief snatch I manage to catch it’s clear she possess a soulful voice, one that is backed up by a quartet that channels the more introspective side of indie. As their final number builds to an impressive crescendo I find myself wishing we’d managed to get here earlier .

Mohawk Radio DI Ideal ForgeryIdeal Forgery are next on the bill, they have an eclectic line up that includes violin and cello alongside the usual suspects of guitar and drums, after a mournful start they kick into some spirited indie rock that embraces the more melodic side of the folk punk scene, along with a hint of emo. For me the violin and cello brought an orchestral dimension to their sound, and it’s this that really separates them from the pack, Ideal Forgery are yet another local discovery that I can’t help but feel will be headed for bigger things, as there is no one else that sounds quite like them. The other factor that struck me about them is that their vocalist, Zak Heaney, peppers the gaps between songs with the word fuck as much as anyone I’ve ever seen. 

Mohawk Radio DI Jess KempJess Kemp is tonight’s final support, she delivers accomplished indie fuelled power pop that is mixed with a dash of rock, as their cover of Fleetwood Mac is testimony to, but don’t let that put you off, she twists the old rock classic to her own purposes to give it a fresh lease of life. There is something about Jess Kemp that for some reason reminds me of the energy of bands such as The Muffs and Against Me!, albeit on one of their quieter days. Maybe this is beacuse Jess Kemp possesses a vocal delivery that contains the kind of emotive melodic growl that few possess and for me her set is further evidence of the North Wests healthy and burgeoning DIY scene.

Mohawk Radio DI 1The Deaf Institute is packed to capacity for tonight’s Mohawk Radio show, this is even more impressive when you consider this is a totally DIY affair, artists with a label backing frequently play this venue to smaller crowds, and its to their credit that they’ve achieved this on their own terms. Three quarters of Mohawk Radio take to the stage and kick things off before vocalist Mia Page joins them onstage and their set starts in earnest. Mohawk Radio deliver the kind of hard edged alt rock that, as good as they are on record, really is at it best when experienced live. Mohawk Radio channel the best of rock, and they are a rock band at their heart, but they channel this with a harder edged sensibility more akin to alt rock and grunge that gives them the kind of cross genre appeal that most bands would kill for.

Mohawk Radio DI 2Mia Page has a striking vocal delivery, when you couple this with a razor sharp band you inevitably have a winning formula. On Your Knees, the lead track from their latest EP, sounds even better live, Mia Page works the stage like she’s playing to an arena crowd, whilst the band provide a rock solid backing. Their set varies between their upbeat heavier numbers and the softer side of their material, whilst the studio versions of these tracks didn’t appeal to me as much, live they are transformed into crowd pleasing foot stompers. The whole set is delivered with a joyful zeal, and there’s something about this band that makes you feel they are destined for bigger venues and crowds.

Mohawk Radio DI 3Mohawk Radio were incredible tonight, the level of showmanship on display is normally reserved for bigger venues and established acts, as a result their impressive set passed by in a blur. I’ll be honest, as much as I liked the Shoot From The Hip EP I wasn’t expecting to enjoy tonight as much as I did, the unrestrained hedonism of their rock influences, combined with their alternative roots, makes for an irresistible combination, and I feel privileged to have caught Mohawk Radio at this sold out intimate show. It’s not often you see a band with this kind of stage presence in a venue of this size, and on the basis of tonight’s show I’d recommend that you to tune into Mohawk Radio as soon as you get the chance.

Mohawk Radio DI 4Katie Mac‘s Facebook page is here

Ideal Forgery‘s Facebook page can be found here and their website is located here 

Jess Kemp‘s Facebook page is located here

The Punk Site review of Mohawk Radio‘s Shoot From The Hip EP is here

Mohawk Radio‘s website, where you can order the Shoot From The Hip EP, is located here

Photography is by Dean Unsworth, his Instagram account is located here,

You can click on any of Dean’s photos to view a slide show of the images

Green Day Feb 17

Green Day / The Interrupters

Manchester Arena, Manchester, UK

6th February 2017
By

Rating: 4.5/5

 
 

 

 

I’m not usually a fan of arena concerts, I tend to find they lack they the atmosphere and intimacy of the small to mid sized venues, add to this that these enormous venues aren’t usually designed for live music, they are better suited to Disney on ice or sports events, along with the inflated bar and merchandise prices and the ridiculous queues for absolutely everything, you potentially have a recipe for a disappointing and expensive evening. But I must make it clear that I’m in no way blaming the bands for this state of affairs, there is no way that Green Day could appear at any other venue in Manchester and play to everyone that wanted to see them, and on the basis of tonight’s crowd I’d guess there were still a fair few disappointed fans, so the choice is to simply to put up with the downside of these shows, or stay at home, and as I’ve missed the last few tours by Green Day I’m taking the former option.

Green Day are touring in support of, Revolution Radio, their twelfth studio album, and a release that has marked something of a return to form for the band, this epic tour is covering three continents, countless countries and tonight is the penultimate night of the first European leg of the tour, one that has covered pretty much all of Western Europe, and for me there is a added attraction to this section of the tour as Green Day are accompanied by The Interrupters, a band I’ve wanted to catch live ever since I heard their triumphant sophomore album, Say It Out Loud, that for me was one of the best albums to be released in 2016. As it’s an early start for their set the only sensible option is to brave the rush hour traffic, and the typically damp Mancunian weather, and head down to the Manchester Arena to ensure I catch them.

There is a fine selection of well chosen tunes covering the last forty years of punk belting out in the arena, everything from seventies UK punk acts such as The Clash and Elvis Costello, through to harder edged American acts such as Bad Religion, which marks a promising start to the evening prior to the opening set by The Interrupters. The three Bivona brothers that make up three quarters of the band, who are clad in matching monochrome outfits, and vocalist Aimee Interrupter take to the stage, whilst the arena is nowhere near full, a healthy crowd has had the good sense to turn up early to catch tonight’s support act. From the opening number, A Friend Like Me, it’s clear that The Interrupters are going to make a lot of friends tonight, the sound is perfect for their set and their enthusiasm and energy shines out from the opening chords.

Despite not having played venues of this size before The Interrupters seem at home on the cavernous stage, their set is a riotous high energy snapshot of their career to date, with a few well chosen covers thrown in, Too Much Pressure by The Selecter and Operation Ivy‘s Sound System, that highlight their influences. My personal highlights from the set were By My Side, She Got Arrested and Media Sensation, all of which appeared on last years stunning sophomore album, Say It Out Loud. The Interrupters capture the spirit of the original two tone movement like no other band that I’ve encountered, the hyperactive quartet swiftly garner an enthusiastic reception from the Green Day faithful with their short set of ska infused punk, a set that for me is all too brief, as this is a band that you need to see live if you get the chance.

The Manchester Arena is packed by the time Green Day are due take to the stage, after the welcome of selection of punk tunes the epic Queen single Bohemian Rhapsody emerges from the PA, and it receives a response from the crowd that is straight out of Wayne’s World, this was followed by the Ramones classic Bliztkrieg Bop, which is accompanied, for some reason, by a cheerleading drunken pink bunny, that I strongly suspect was Tre Cool, warming the crowd up, before the ominous strains of Ennio Morricone‘s The Good, The Bad And The Ugly ring out indicating that Green Day‘s arrival is now imminent. I’ve previously seen Green Day at this venue, back on the Warning tour, a tour which was marred by many of the pitfalls I highlighted earlier, any concerns I may have had about history repeating itself were swiftly laid to rest by Green Day.

Green Day open with a rousing Know Your Enemy, with Billie Joe Armstrong engaging the crowd from the off, these days Green Day are augmented by three additional musicians, providing additional guitars and vocals, and in the case of Jason Freese pretty much everything else, there are impressive pyrotechnics, that I can feel the heat from from my stage right position, circle pits appear early in the set and there are rabble rousing speeches for freedom, and of course against the baffling election of Donald Trump. The set covers much of Green Day‘s three decades and twelve studio albums, although much of it is drawn from the classic albums Dookie and American Idiot, and of course their latest album, Revolution Radio, but it includes material from the majority of their releases, including a few numbers from their 1991 sophomore album, Kerpunk.

It was pleasing to hear Billie Joe Armstrong make a plea for people to stop filming the concert, not for copyright or ego reasons but encouraging people to live in the moment rather than filming it, a sentiment I wholeheartedly endorse, there was a brief reduction following this appeal, but it was sadly shortlived. Their set veers between the epic numbers, that are designed for arenas, and their upbeat punker material, and even a rather self indulgent extended medley that was comprised of King For A Day and compositions by George Michael, Lulu, Monty Python, The Undertones, The Rolling Stones and The Beatles, whilst this might indicate a shift away from Punk, their decision to include a cover of Operation Ivy‘s Knowledge in their set, the second time this influential band has been covered tonight, indicates they are not as far removed as some would have you believe.

For their first encore they return with two tracks from what is regarded by many, myself included, as their best album, American Idiot, the title track from that LP and Jesus Of Suburbia are riotously received, before Billie Joe Armstrong returns on his own for a final downbeat acoustic encore. Green Day played an impressive two and a half hour set, they were so good tonight I almost forgot how much I dislike the Manchester Arena, and there is no higher praise I can think of. This was at it’s heart a rock show, but Green Day have retained enough of their roots to make it a punk rock show. I leave the arena to further vintage punk strains and the inevitably huge queues. By the time I actually exit the venue half the stage has already been dismantled by a small army of roadies, and when I eventually step outside, and finally get to have a cigarette, the roads surrounding the venue are flooded with a sweaty and delirious horde who are slowly making their way home in the chilly Manchester night.

Everything about tonight’s show, apart from the venue, was perfect, from the pre show music and The Interrupters flawless opening set onwards, throughout their set Green Day had the capacity crowd in the palm of the hands, from the opening chords of Know Your Enemy through to the delicate closing chords of the inevitable final encore, Good Riddance (Time Of Your Life). I got the impression that this is a band that is still loving playing live, and importantly they are a band that still believes that rock n’ roll still has the capacity to change the world for the better. Green Day have kept there political rage, if anything it’s even more prominent now following recent unfortunate developments in US politics, yes they can be a little self indulgent in places, but what’s the point of playing an arena show if you can’t have fun with it?

Green Day will be returning to Europe later this year, as well as further legs that will cover Oceania and North America, and on the basis of tonight’s show this is a tour that you really don’t want to miss.

Tre Cool visited Manchester’s Cat Café whilst he was in the city, you can read about his visit here 

The Punk Site review of The Interrupters 2016 album, Say It Out Loud, can be found here

The Interrupters website can be located here

Green Day‘s official website can be found here

Capital Youth Release Video Of ‘Where You Are’

Capital Youth LemonadeGeneva’s Capital Youth have released their debut EP, Lemonade, via their own label, Roosevelt Records. The release can be purchased and streamed via Capital Youth‘s Bandcamp and a review of the EP will be posted on The Punk Site shortly. The band have now released a video for the track, Where You Are, that is taken from the Lemonade EP.

Capital Youth‘s Facebook page can be located here and the Roosevelt Records Facebook page can be found here

The Lemonade EP can be streamed and downloaded here and the video can be viewed below Read More…

Empty Lungs To Release ‘Don’t Get It’ EP

Empty Lungs Dont Get ItManaging to capture the angst and protest spirit of punk rock and blend it with hooks and melody more akin to the indie rock and power pop of the 90’s, Empty Lungs have an energy and determination second to none. Then again, when you grow up in Belfast, Northern Ireland at the tail end of a bitter and divisive 35-year conflict, grit and determination to create something positive and unique are instilled in you. This determination has seen Empty Lungs become the first European artist to sign with Canadian label Hidden Pony Records, their Don’t Get It EP is planned for release on March 10th on vinyl and digital download through all usual retailers.

The Hidden Pony Records website is here and Empty Lungs spring tour dates are below Read More…

The Role Models Announce UK Tour

Role Models Tour Feb 17London power pop quartet the Role Models have announced a UK tour in support of their impressive Forest Lawn album, that was released last year via Glunk Records. The tour will start in Sheffield on the 16th February and the will culminate at the legendary 100 Club in London on the 24th February.

Forest Lawn can be ordered here and streamed via the Role Models Bandcamp here

You can read The Punk Site review of Forest Lawn here

The tour dates can be viewed by clicking on the tour flyer

The King Blues And Louise Distras UK Tour Announced

louise-distras-kbBritish punk rock band The King Blues have announced Louise Distras as main support on their forthcoming 2017 UK tour. Louise Distras has just completed a tour across mainland Europe in support of her latest single, Aileen, a live album was recorded on the tour, at the legendary Wild At Heart venue in Berlin, that will be released shortly.

You can order Aileen, and Louise Distras’ debut album, Dreams From The Factory Floor, here

You can pre-order Louise Distras – Live In Berlin here

Catch Louise Distras and her band on the tour dates below Read More…

Louise Distras Announces 2017 Tour With The King Blues

louise-distras-nice-guys-dec-17The British firebrand singer songwriter Louise Distras has just completed a tour across mainland Europe in support of her latest single, Aileen, a live album was recorded on the tour, at the legendary Wild At Heart venue in Berlin, that will be released shortly. Never one to rest on her laurels, Louise has announced that she will be back on the road in the UK next month with The King Blues.

You can order Aileen, and Louise Distras’ debut album, Dreams From The Factory Floor, here

You can pre-order Louise Distras – Live In Berlin here

You can view the tour dates with The King Blues below Read More…

Louise Distras Releases ‘Nice Guys Finish Last’ Video

louise-distras-nice-guys-dec-17British firebrand singer songwriter Louise Distras pays homage to punk legends Green Day in a new video covering their 1997 hit, Nice Guys Finish Last. The track was originally recorded and released as part of Kerrang Magazine’s American Superhits CD. Louise Distras has just completed a tour across mainland Europe in support of her latest single, Aileen, don’t miss your chance to see her live in London this Friday 16 December at the Camden Rocks Xmas Party at Nambucca.

You can order Aileen, and Louise Distras’ debut album, Dreams From The Factory Floor, here

You can view the video for Nice Guys Finish Last below Read More…

jagger-holly-djfe

Jagger Holly

DJ Free Europe

Outloud! Records / Swamp Cabbage Records / Monster Zero Records
By

Rating: 4/5

 
 

 

 

Punk power pop trio Jagger Holly, that features former members of The Spastic Hearts, The Johnie 3 and the Hollywood Blondes, released their debut album, DJ Free Europe, earlier this year. The album is available from Swamp Cabbage Records in the USA and Monster Zero Records in Europe, additionally in the US the CD version of the album is available via Outloud! Records with an alternate, and in my view superior, version of the album cover that can be seen adorning this review.

DJ Free Europe kicks off with the high energy punk of Friday Night, from this point you’re in for eleven high energy blasts of authentic punk rock with only a few deviations from this well worn, and well loved, template. There’s a fifties rock ‘n roll vibe incorporated into my personal highlight on DJ Free EuropeAnd Then She Kissed Me, and there’s the comparatively mellow acoustic number of International Love Song, but other than these two songs this is relentless punk rock that carries on the legacy of the Ramones, you find yourself mentally inserting the 1234 before each track. In keeping with tradition there is a punked up cover included, DJ Free Europe closes with an upbeat punk rock version of the often covered song Some Guys Have All The Luck, and for me the joyous punk rock energy brings new life to a song that was flatlining after being trampled into mediocrity by Rod Stewart and Robert Palmer.

This an album that channels the likes of The Methadones, Teenage Bottlerocket and of course the Ramones, and it does it with style, if you were looking for faults with this album the only one you could accuse Jagger Holly of having is that there’s nothing new, it treads the same ground as the aforementioned bands, but that’s never been a problem for me providing it’s done well, and DJ Free Europe is a damn fine album of punk rock that carries a slight rock n roll twist, whilst it’s not original this is as good an album of straight up no frills power pop tinged punk rock as I’ve heard this year.

DJ Free Europe can be streamed and purchased on CD here (USA) and here (Europe) and it can be downloaded here

superweaks-bh

The Superweaks

Better Heavens

Lame-O Records
By

Rating: 4.5/5

 
 

 

 

The Superweaks were born out of the Philadelphia scene, they have members in common with fellow Pennslyvanians Thin Lips and Dangerous Ponies, the band evolved from a loose music collective to a full time band for their first EP, The World Is A Terrible Place And I Hate Myself And Want To Die, that was released as The Weaks. Since that first release they have gone from strength to strength, building a solid fan base, and changing their name to The Superweaks, and now they have released Better Heavens, this is their sophomore album and it follows on from their acclaimed 2015 debut, Bad Year.

Better Heavens combines varied influences, from the geek rock of Weezer and Nerf Herder, through to some traditional rock and DIY punk ethics, of bands such as The Ergs, to create a melodic and intense brand of power pop. They have retained the sound that made Bad Year such an impressive debut, but they’ve expanded their sound, and their range of influences, to create an album that surpasses their first release. Paralyzed is a fine starting point, it boasts a heavy riff, keyboards and effortless energy that is the hallmark of a great power pop release, the pace varies but the constant factor is the hook laden riffs that populate Better Heavens. The heavy pop is not the end of the story, tracks such as Heavy Dreams demonstrate a more reflective quality, the pace of the album is brought down but the riffs inexplicably get heavier, whilst Oh God We’re All So Miserable Now features an unashamedly melancholy feel.

Better Heavens is dedicated to the memory of the band’s bass player and family member, Corey Bernard, brother of vocalist Evan Bernard, who passed away at the age of 22 this summer. The artwork featured on the album, both on the cover and further art within the LP, come from drawings and sketches made by Corey, and the album was recorded prior to his death. Better Heavens is a fitting tribute to the their departed brother and band member, and I can’t help but feeling that this would be an album he would be proud of, it’s The Superweaks finest release to date and it’s a tribute to them that they carried on in their wake of their loss.

The Superweaks released Better Heavens earlier this month and the album can be ordered here

Louise Distras To Release ‘Live In Berlin’

louise-distras-berlinLouise Distras has announced that she will be recording a live album tomorrow night, 27th November, at the legendary Berlin venue Wild At Heart. The album will be entitled Louise Distras – Live In Berlin, and it will include songs from her acclaimed debut album, Dreams from the Factory Floor, as well as offering a first chance for many fans to hear some of her brand new material.

All the funds raised from the sale of this download only live album will go directly towards funding the making of her as yet untitled sophomore album.

You can pre-order Louise Distras – Live In Berlin here

Excuses Excuses Release ‘Frame Of Mind’ EP

PrintExcuses Excuses is a punk rock n’ roll three piece that reside just on the the outskirts of Canada’s Music Capitol Toronto. The band is calling for people to take responsibility for their actions through their thoughtful punk rock anthems. Since February 2016 the band has been developing their own version of punk rock inspired by bands like Green Day, Billy Talent, and Foo Fighters. Their debut EP, Frame of Mind, is released today, Friday November 25th, it is one that focuses largely on events and experiences from their teenage years, touching on topics of drug use, personal matters, loss, and the uncertain future.

Excuses Excuses Facebook page can be found here

You can view the video for The Outsider below and purchase the Frame Of Mind EP here Read More…

Jack Lee’s ‘Bigger Than Life’ To Be Released On 25th November

jack-lee-btlLegendary singer/songwriter Jack Lee has been on the radar of rock fans since the late ’70s, when he formed the iconic power pop band The Nerves, alongside Paul Collins and Peter Case. His songs have been covered by a multitude of artists, including the legendary power pop hit Hanging On The Telephone that has been covered by Blondie and L7, but fans have found his solo work very hard to come by prior to this release. Bigger Than Life is a double album filled with 23 memorable songs, all reissued for the first time since the 1980s, and showcasing the incredible songwriting of this reclusive pop genius. Jack Lee‘s Bigger Than Life will be available this Friday, November 25th on limited edition hand-mixed starburst vinyl and CD formats via Alive Naturalsound Records.
 
You can order Bigger Than Life on starburst vinyl here and on cd here
 
andy-j-gallagher-sheena

Andy J. Gallagher

Sheena's Big Night Out

Self Released
By

Rating: 3.5/5

 
 

 

 

Remember the AA side single? back in the day there were singles that didn’t feature a remix or a live track on the reverse side, just two equally matched studio tracks, either of which could front the release. This has largely been a dying format, but Andy J. Gallagher is here to remind you of just how good they could be. Sheena’s Big Night Out and it’s double a side, Because We Are, are the first shots across the bows from his forthcoming new album, Ego. This single, and the forthcoming album, is produced by long time collaborator, and former guitarist of The Damned and The Phantom Chords, Roman Jugg.

The A side, Sheena’s Big Night Out, is a slice of the catchy new wave inspired power pop, and a damn fine one it is at that, however, it’s on the chorus it comes into it’s own, a perfect sing along bouncy number that grabs you before it comes to an abrupt halt. The AA side, Because We Are, starts with an off key vocal into taken straight from The Beatles song book before it breaks into a fast paced indie number, Because We Are would happily sit alongside anything from the Arctic Monkeys first album, and it’s as lyrically and musically sharp as anything by that band.

Andy J Gallagher‘s material always wears it’s influences on it’s sleeve, you can hear Buzzcocks in the guitar lines, alongside the aforementioned influences, lyrically the single displays Andy J. Gallagher‘s biting social commentary which features his trademark sardonic lyrical touch. To complete the package you can hear Roman Jugg‘s influence seeping through into the track, he’s done a perfect job of mixing the two tracks that make up Sheena’s Big Night Out, there’s a delicious rough edge to the single that suits the material perfectly. The combination of these elements form a strong single that whets your appetite for his forthcoming album nicely.

The limited edition CD of Sheena’s Big Night Out can be ordered here

Andy J. Gallagher Makes Debut LP Available As A Free Download

andy-j-gallagher-sheenaAndy J. Gallagher‘s forthcoming single, Sheena’s Big Night Out, and it’s double a side Because We Are, is the first taste of what’s to come from his eagerly anticipated sophomore album, Ego. He has resumed his collaboration with former guitarist of The Damned and The Phantom Chords, Roman Jugg, who plays guitar on a few tracks, as well as producing and mixing the album. To celebrate the release of the new album and single Andy J. Gallagher has made his debut full length, Helicopter Dolphin Submarine, available as a free download.

The limited edition CD of Sheena’s Big Night Out can be ordered here

Helicopter Dolphin Submarine can be downloaded for free here

Excuses Excuses Release Video For ‘The Outsider’

PrintOntario punk rockers Excuses Excuses will be releasing their debut EP ‘Frame of Mind’ on November 25th and before it drops they have released a video, and are offering fans a free download, of their third and latest single The Outsider. The track is one of five on the band’s debut EP that focuses largely on events and experiences from their teenage years, touching on topics of drug use, personal matters, loss, and the uncertain future.

Excuses Excuses Facebook page can be found here

You can view the video below and download The Outsider here Read More…