Jan 28 2010
Jan 28 2010
Jan 31 2010
Jan 30 2010
Bluescene @ The Lion
Jan 30 2010
Fox and Duck
Jan 28 2010
Jan 31 2010
Jan 30 2010
Bluescene @ The Lion
Jan 30 2010
Fox and Duck
Raw Glory was formed in 2006 as a vehicle for the accomplished professional musicians, drummer Mick Underwood and guitarist
Cosmo (along with their ‘old bassist’ Johhny Heywood) to keep the rhythm rocking.
The combined talent and the significant antecedent histories of these three notable rockers (Cosmo and Mick were playing professionally back in the 1960s) together with their new bass player Andy Hodge and their flamboyant frontman Paul Manzi, easily earn them a place in the ‘Rock Royalty’ section of the lexicon of popular music With these credentials, they really should be sipping margueritas on a sunny tropical shore somewhere.
But it is not enough to rest on your laurels, especially if you wanna live a rock n ‘roll lifestyle to the extreme … these guys are still out working every week – making new music and recreating their old fire and magic at local venues around West London.
These guys still rock. They still perform out-and-out guts and glory assaults on the tender eardrums of unsuspecting punters any given Saturday night.
Big dirty tunes like ‘Bad Girl’ are overblown heavy metal anthems stylistically blasted through with bombastic beats and heavy riffs. These songs crash out of the Raw Glory speakers in waves and waves of sound, drowning the audience, and making ‘em gasp for air.
I am at that ‘dangerous age’. So, when I had my first “sound attack”, inflicted upon me by Raw Glory, I clutched my heaving chest. My arms went stiff like a starfish, but at the same time, my legs turned to jelly. Then my ears started to drum, hiss and crackle intermittently and, finally, a shooting star whooshed up the left side of my brain and fired out of my pineal gland like a flame blasting from a blow torch. I thought that I would never recover. Wow – this is potent stuff. If heavy metal was illegal then Raw Glory would be ‘class A’ – and this stuff they are still pedalling would be the equivalent of 100% pure Colombian.
The rest of the audience at Hard Rock Hell also suffered severe “Sound Attacks”. We even had a taste of the kinda magic that drummer Mick Underwood could still evoke on the skins. It seems unlikely that there was a better, faster, fatter performance on the drums over the entire three days of the festival. And guitarist Cosmo also cranked up the angst and let fly with furious laments, banshee cries, whispers, whelps and raining chords. It was all there in the sound attacks that he performed for the crowd at Prestatyn.
But it was the singer who stole the show from his distinguished colleagues and turned a modest pub sized gig into a major tour de force suitable for a stadium-sized sell-out. The tail of the peacock, the enlarged claw of a male fiddler crab and the overblown curly mop of hair upon the head of wild rock singer such as Paul Manzi or Robert Plant are all sure-fire signs of male virility. Here was an alpha-male strutting the territory of his stage in glorious dominance. The truest definition of all that is, and ever was, so macho. He said that he owed everything to Led Zep. And the band’s startling rendition of ‘Whole Lotta Love’, to round off their set, proved this to be true.
Like the rest of the eager audience I was swept away by the sheer vibrancy of the Raw Glory act – and my favourite number “White Lies” was still ringing in my ears several hours later. Raw Glory is the sum of all that is noble and strong in the world of heavy metal and rock n’ roll.
And they prove that you don’t have to be youthful to be vital.
I wish them many, many more years of rocking. Good Health!
Lady and the Lost Boys Nov 28, The Old Fire Station, Windsor
Playing music from the Berkshire school of damp labradors, green wellies, moist Edinburgh woollens and ‘Mummy Knows Best ’ attitudes, this band played a short but sweet set at the Firestation Arts Centre, Windsor on Sat 28t November.
The smallish crowd sat in patient lines, cross-legged on the wooden floor, humble like children in the school end-of-term concert.
Lady and the Lost Boys are a female lead five-piece band with chunky bass guitar, tantalizing percussion, emotive keyboards and a multi-talented muso who bounces between guitar, keys and even supplemental percussion, providing layers of texture as each song unfolds.
The introspective topics of the songs are based upon personal experiences and transparent memories – coming largely from a female perspective. Sipping a coffee in the breaks, petite dark haired vocalist Annabel Jones sings the Legoland, Camberwick Green, Technicolor songs from the Lady and the Lost Boys song-book. Her delivery reminds me of ‘Alanis Morissette’ and to a lesser extent, ‘Elizabeth Fraser’ (not so ethereal) and her voice is airy, high register and distinct enough to cut above the harmonic texture of music. Some of the songs ended with melodramatic yet creative ‘shoe-gaze’ blended sounds – others ended on a hand-clap or a jingle.
A few pared down guitar riffs are well hidden and tend to illuminate rather than detract from the amorphous sounds and add drama and insistence when required. The experience is fascinating and calming reminding me a lot of ‘Alison’s Halo’.
One of my favourites was the bass heavy (bass by Robin Pearson) song ‘That’s OK’. This is a song rippling with action, combining integrated piano tinkling and rat-a-tat percussion with honey sweet lyrical content delivered in a breathy, whisper-in-your ear style. The clappy and trilling chorus was nod-headingly joyful and the extraordinarily well-behaved and obviously well educated audience showed their appreciation with understated murmuring claps. Gently unfolding lyrics such as “How many gold coins should I put aside before I’m out of debt in your eyes . . . “ demonstrate the band’s ambitions as poetic quality shoegazers.
This is a band for a damp autumn evening by the open-fire, or to listen to on your Ipod as you take your golden retriever for a walk down the leaf-fall winter lanes. Thoroughly recommended.
News From the Bridges – November 7th 2009
TrueBeat are looking for a new drummer!
Yes Truebeat are parting company with their old drummer (on good terms) because of commitment issues so the new guy must be dedicated and willing to go the whole hog. A car and the ability to do backing vocals are also very useful but not essential! Anyway, have a listen to ‘em and see what you think; if you want an audition, get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org. Catch these skasters in STAINES on Nov 26 2009 at The Hobgoblin [www.myspace.com/truebeatuk]
WAXHOUSE are going into the STAKEOUT STUDIOS Hampton next week to start recording an EP with Chris Coulter … we wish them a pile of luck [www.myspace.com/waxhouseband]
Melodramatic Surrey rockers ARCANE ROOTS have a new website they want you to visit : www.arcaneroots.com …. it is coming to life a bit more too with some live tracks and some demos up as well as a discography … but they would like to see more fans coming in tho! Click on, send ‘em messages, tell ‘em what you want and who you are!
Feltham eccentric yet sensible indie rockers “The Eccentric Sensibles”
[www.myspace.com/eccentricsensible] will be in the Studio next week to collaborate with artist Lori Sims (acoustic), on a blinding new song entitled “Player” . . .
Indie poppers AUDIO VIDEO DISCO [www.myspace.com/audiovideodiscouk] will be playing The Fighting Cocks Kingston-Upon-Thames Dec 5 2009 at 8:00P
Guildford’s Fab Four GETSETRADIO is coming to STAINES for all you lucky people – catch ‘em on Nov 15 2009 at 8:00P at OUR FAVOURITE STAINES venue The Hobgoblin w/ 8th Time Luckie [www.GETSETRADIO.com]
Twickenham punksters ANONYMOUS TIP (who will be playing STAINES Nov 26 2009 at 8:00P The Hobgoblin W/ True Beat) have been getting some seriously strong support from radio and hot reviews from tastemakers Subba Cultcha and Music Week …
WITHOUT THOUGHT are lined up for two sparkling Christmas Shows… the first is Dec 19 2009 8:00P at Guildford – The Boileroom **Christmas Party** w/ Polar + JB Conspiracy and the VERY NEXT DAY the band plays STAINES Dec 20 2009 8:00P at The Hobgoblin (w/ Purge & Polar) [www.myspace.com/withoutthought ]
After a gob-routing shockingly successful show at the BUCKLE UP Rock Goblin, STAINES hometown’s favourite pop act MISS PINK SHOES is back in TOWN playing THE HOB Dec 3 2009 7:00P so if you missed ‘em in November come back and support this LOCAL ACT this December.[www.myspace.com/misspinkshoesofficial]
Sweet and frothy on top – dark and mysterious when you delve deeper – stained and smeared with a light bloom of self-belief and a love-of-life, Hollow Limit is a joyful and optimistic young band – not doom laden and nihilistic like many of their melodic metalcore compatriots.
I was fortunate enough to see their recent performance at The Hob, Staines Sunday 25th October. Sharing the finesse of Avenged Sevenfold together with the egotistical majesty of Iron Maiden, these local lads have grand aspirations and tip-top musical talent to boot.
I loved the clean vocals (not too many metalcore growls) from Dan, the dual guitar symphonies from the twin guitar maestros of Tommy Goodrick and Mike Lidiard, the rattling rapid-fire drum notes (with plenty of radiating blast beats) from Luke Veryard and, not forgetting, the exquisite bass patterns from George Pardoe.
Yes, hardcore Hanworth head-bangers Hollow Limit nail their symphonic intentions firmly to the mast right from the outset.
Their twin lead guitars take turns to tango, the shrieking breaks and rippin’ and searing solos tending to lacerate your eardrums. It soon becomes clear that the cruel intention of this lively and lucid band is to frizzle your brain hair, slap a smile upon your chops and twist your insides inside-out, whilst simultaneously demolishing your ear-drums, in an all-out tactical assault on your mind and body.
I particularly enjoyed the ‘Bon Jovi’ sounding shallow snarling low-points and well positioned breakdowns on ‘The Devils Hour’ but my favourite Hollow Limit number has to be ‘Our Desperate Story’ with its complex metal basslines, carved and exquisitely handcrafted riffs and inventive, adventurous, twisting leads.
Dan Evans is the band’s fresh cheeky-faced ‘cockney looking’ front-man (he looks like a character from those 1970’s ‘Confessions of a Window Cleaner’ type films – you can just imagine Dan shinning down the drainpipe with his shirt-tails flapping between his legs, because the headmistress’s husband - known to us as ‘the colonel’ – has just arrived home unexpectedly … you can then picture him having to hastily make off in the nearest possible vehicle – in this case a milk float – just before the Colonel appears blustering and red-faced at the door, weilding a shotgun.) His charmingly fresh
vocals tend to add clarity and counter-points to the intricate musical compositions whilst his cheeky boyish grin, mop of golden hair, and innocent smile adds to the bizarre sense of ‘Britishness’ that pervades the overall style of this group.
If you like metal and you are looking for an authentic British equivalent to Avenged Sevenfold, with a capacity to produce astonishing, twisting and turning aural landscapes where grungy gravely low chords are cut through by exciting high points, then your are gonna just lurve Hollow Limit.
See ‘em now before they become too old!
The quixotic charm of The James Warner Prophecies is that their music contains a myriad of styles, oeuvres and impressions – much like J-Rock - but theirs is less disposable pop in style and more harmonic indie in ambition. Thus we get thick slices of American Punk (i.e. think ‘Bad Religion’) laced generously with Brit indie folk sound reminiscent of ‘The Magic Numbers’.
So with The James Warner Prophecies you get melodic singing together with hardcore drum beats and haunting flute. Yeah, I know it shouldn’t work. But it does. Just. Sometimes you feel poised on the edge of something a little too grand and opulent to be really honest … but then the twinkle-in-the-eye gentle humour of the band shines through, and the result is an agreeable love fest of sound and virtue.
Benign Rasputin-like figure Joe Brown is the mighty front-man power-house lead singer/guitar of the band. Striding about the stage looking like a kindly ginger version of Edward Teach (the notorious pirate) – with an enormous burning red beard and a savage glint in his cruel eye. Instead of cutlass and sword, though, we get electric mandolin & guitar – but the results are similarly battle hardened with an abundance of inventive fireworks from the fret-boards and vindictive encounters with the spiteful strings of the mandolin.
Bringing some calm and beauty to the proceedings, Kate Rounding plays a mournful flute on many songs, plus the haunting chords on Korg. I understand Kate also adds violin to the mix – but we didn’t see her fiddle at The Hob. Lanky long-haired hippy Matt Anthony adds some low inventive and, ultimately, reassuring bass to the songs and the ‘Noel Fielding’ look-alike Dan Williams in assured and competent on drums.
The band moved ruthlessly from song-to-song keeping up the pressure and starting with an appropriately named tune ‘Braincell Piracy’ before launching into ‘King of The Killers’, then onto ‘Judas Stone’ and ‘The Itch’. The big end to the show was their ‘Set The World on Fire’ track (the unimaginatively named) ‘Mandolin Song’. This song has some fierce fretting from Joe (on mandolin) with audacious flares of light and fire from Kate and plenty of pounding crashing percussion from Dan and Matt. A truly exciting and heart pummelling joy of a song.
From my own point of view, I would prefer something a bit more languid and soulfully helpful from Kate (at times it seemed like her contributions were repetitive and almost go through-the-motions routine in content) and I would also like a little less sympathy from the band for the folk-country traditions of their home county (Derbyshire) and a little more hard driving rock from the ensemble … but that is just my personal taste.
Overall, though, the band makes a positive contribution to the Rock / Folk Rock scene. The band members are a jolly hardworking crew with a capable and naturally talented energy. I Strongly recommend that you see their live show soon.
Avenge Thee + Naime – Staines Hobgoblin 03 September 2009
Called up, Unbound
At its best metal/hardcore is de-rationalised but the stubbornly experimetal sounds of Avenge Thee + Naime take it to the next level … an almost astringent hard-core mix of mutually assured distraction. Avenge Thee place more emphasis on the avant-garde shades of metal (almost jazz metal) than most other bands do. They like to create complex sound platforms with unorthodox time signatures that are both flexible and yet adaptable to the surroundings… like a mixed up protean beastie.
The band tend to explore new techniques and possibilities but always play within the limits of the stage setting and the tolerance of the public. These guys, led, with enthusiasm by Adam Wesgate on vocals and ably supported by Marc Prentice on the guitar with Danny Westgate (bass) and Chainy Rabbit (drums) in the power plant, give this new metal monster a face and that face is experimental hardcore at its finest.
The insatiable audience in the Hob, Staines were treated to several surrealistically short microsongs (under 2 mins) and a new kind of aggressively grungy thrash metal that was less smash n’ bash and more wounded soul. Adam’s extended vocal techniques were generally softer than other compatriots in the field of hardcore metal and, oft times , the accompanying complex weave of slightly off-tuned guitars and emerging blast-beats were a delight for the ears and brought joy to the heart of all the jaded metal luvvas out there. There were plenty of enjoyable, slower, intense passages and these left the breathless audience moshing freely in the warm night air.
Fine metal from this promising and hard working band.