Introducing Rinse 16/11/14

Recently formed, local up-and-coming band Rinse’s trio of demos inflict nothing less of an auspicious introductory impression, riveted in potential prosperity. Evidently the sound is something of a variable in these precursory stages of musical identity; within each track elements are alternated, mangled and transposed – which is anything but a negative. I’d oppose any opinions which convey that experimentation signifies a scarcity in creative direction; what Rinse have done to commendable effect is established three contrasting, but elegant sounds.

Undoubtedly it’s trademark indie, but on the same note hard to characterise; there’s sprinkled embers of Peace in the psychedelic ‘Going Under’, a rhythmic lingering Foals influence oozing from ‘Stick Around’, perhaps a miniscule dash of The Maccabees within the pace and vigour of ‘Drown’. However even then the influence is exceptionally minute and immensely subjective to respective tastes, creditably this can only act as a tribute to the way Rinse maintain a bold, statuesque individuality throughout every track. Another asset to the local scene… eager to hear more!

Finn

Psyence – Phoenix- Single Review 09/11/2014

Once again Psyence take us on a psychedelic rock n roll journey into a world of entrancing talent, this time with their new single Phoenix.

The spine tingling intro catapults you into an exquisite guitar riff and a pounding drum beat, both giving this song that memorable and die-hard rock n roll sound. The chorus brings with it a sensational sense of chaos and freedom and definitely does not disappoint. Near its end the song briefly calms and then launches into a superb guitar solo which rounds the track off to its top potential.

Psyence never fail to impress me and they always deliver that electrical experience you get when you listen to them, live or recorded. A magical and euphoric track which without a doubt will drown out those winter blues.

Alisha

Psyence, Two Skies, Rinse, James Biddulph Jnr @ Underground 08/11/2014

What a night to end an 8 day tour, Psyence complete the wild week in their hometown, where they are very well loved, along with excellent support.

James Biddulph Jnr, big fan of Psyence and cracking opener to the night. Originally known as the front guy of The Noise he occasionally performs solo. It’s nice to hear something so old and soulfully sounding coming from modern day performers. The melodies touch borders of, late 60’s, old Rnb, bluesy, folky and a warming Britpop lyrical style.  James played tracks from The Blues Man EP which you can find on the soundcloud page; https://soundcloud.com/james-biddulph

A band with a sound everyone wants to hear this year, it’s Rinse. Musically have they have it, they’re an appetising cocktail with a  velvety vocal, heart melting lyrics, riffs that fizz like sherbet then the hammered kick of the drum and bass is like a shot of Sambuca. They have 4 demos out on Soundcloud and on CD, which range massively in influences; https://soundcloud.com/rinseuk

As well as Psyence on tour for 8 days, they were joined by Two Skies from Sheffield. The bond between them seems unbreakable after the last week. Bands that support each other like these do are a big inspiration for the music scene. As a three piece sounding like a five piece, Two Skies fall into the hard rock groovy psych scene. The vibrant energy in the music and attitude creates a QOTSA, BRMC atmosphere. Looking forward to seeing these coming back to Stoke.

What an entrance and welcome. Psyence love it and so do the audience, the atmosphere from when they walked on was electric to when they finished. It all started with a howling scream from Jamie, the new single Phoenix was smoking. Closing my eyes whilst watching Psyence is like hearing musicians with years and years’ experience, their something edgy, something fresh and something unreal. Won’t be long till these are the next biggest ground-breaking band of the year, national.
Lucee

Bonamalis, Cold Committee and Adam Atkinson @ The Full Moon 08/11/2014

Opening the night was solo artist Adam Atkinson, with a set list full of good, old, indie, rock and roll covers the audience couldn’t help but sing along. Adam’s been in the local music scene, in bands and solo, for a while now, he’s slowly getting better with confidence and writing his own material. He goes down the path of a Kasibian/Oasis influence in his performance.

They finally made it to Stoke-on-Trent, Cold Committee from North Wales didn’t disappoint. All four lads have the look, have the personality and most importantly have the music that mesmerised the audience. Still only young the experience they have is incredible, touring with Beady Eye and Miles Kane, as well as their own tours. The set is hung up with catchy hooks, fierce melodies and slick vocals. Ending the set with Masquerade certainly set the bar high, the connection on stage is electric, and it was an explosive ending.

First headline for another yet huge sound band. It’s been a long time since I’ve watched a new band sounding so tight and musically, naturally raw. Bonamalis make each tune with a different vibe, the tempo of the whole set kept the attention of The Full Moon as they ripped through some audience favourites. They have been working with an experienced producer to get some recorded tunes out, we look forward to hearing the final result.

Lucee

Bare John Track Reviews – 07/11/14

Bare John describe themselves as “Female fronted noise from the Midlands” and I couldn’t have put it better myself. Their new LP Routine Kiss is out very soon and from the two tracks I’ve heard so far I’d say any fans of alternative rock are in for a treat.

Birds Teeth has a classic rock intro which bursts into a thrashing guitar riff and empowering lead vocals, which together carry the song along with intensity and force.

Slight Rebellion is another powerful track which showcases wonderful vocal ability and is executed masterfully throughout with fantastic guitar playing and drumming.

Anyone who loves a bit of rock will certainly get a kick from this new record.

Alisha

Halloween @ Full Moon 01/11/14

Personally I’m not one for celebrating Halloween but I got myself dressed up and headed to The Full Moon. I wasn’t disappointed.

It was a great mix of local talent. The Taskers started the spectacular night off with their grungy rock sound. Performing as a duo is a popular trend in the music industry at the moment, Jack and SBT have being rocking the look for 2 nearly 3 years now. Jack has this gritty vocal which contrasts with SBT soulful voice. The avalanche of fuzz that they create flowed into every ferocious riff perfectly. Next gig will be 7th November in Birmingham at Victoria.

With some spooky happenings as an interval, the only guy who can pull golden cuban heels off, Ben Owen was next to perform at Venombase’s Halloween Ball. His overall performance was solid, solid for again, another duo. The rock and roll groove was something refreshing in the Halloween line up. The newly written songs have an influence of glam rock for definite, his stage persona is exciting and puts a real edge and personality to the music. The mash up of Thriller and Ghostbusters got the crown interaction going wild, great choice! His new single Dirty Little Secret is currently number 1 on the Hype Chart and can be found on ITunes – http://benowenmusic.com/

Just before Sea Based Turtles entertained there was a costume competition. It was amazing to see how many people actually dressed up, it came down to a Jacko and Frank-N-Furter the winner was Frank-N-Furter which in fact was the saxophone player from SBT – well deserved winner! They are one of the best experimental bands I’ve seen live – Sea Based Turtles have such a wide range of talent as a 6 piece. The combination of sounds, styles and personalities make the set enjoyable, they always gather the biggest crowd, due to their originality. It amazing to see a band have so much fun on stage – https://seabased-turtles.squarespace.com/

Chainsaws, spooky noises and projections built up the tension ready for Halloween headliners – Circus Junkie Rebels. It was fresh to hear a raw, dirty, rock and roll band with genuine, hard life lyrics. There’s a single out now Take Me Out which screams a Led Zep influence. There’s so much energy on the stage, it fed off into the audience and gave the whole venue a buzz. They finalised their set with a stage invasion performing MJ cover Beat It. Overall after this performance I can’t wait for the release of the Sleeping in Vegas EP!

LC

Adam French – Ivory – Single Review

Ivory is the intensely beautiful and entrancing new single from local singer/songwriter Adam French.

The delicate guitar in the intro glides you effortlessly into what can only be described as 4 minutes of pure serenity, despite the emotion channelled into the song. The lyrics are crafted excellently and the raw talent that shines through really sets this track apart. The song as a whole is faultlessly executed and has a calming, hypnotic quality which completely immerses you in another world.

This single has huge support and has even been playlisted on BBC Radio 1, and if that doesn’t show potential and a flare of genius then I don’t know what does and I’m certain even more great things are to come from Adam French.

Alisha

Moving Moscow – A Shape has a Concept – Single Review

Moving Moscow’s new single A Shape Has a Concept is one of the best tracks I’ve heard in a while and I’m very impressed. With an infectious quality to it, the song reminds me very much of Mallory Knox’s boisterous spirit, which is perhaps one of the reasons I enjoy this track so much.

The vocals hold power but also a more delicate tone which creates a magical effect with the powerful guitar playing and drumming. The build up to the chorus is brilliant and the piano surprising blends in well despite the rock vibe. The song finishes on a slightly slower note but this only adds to its striking impact. Definitely worth checking out!

Alisha

Shakedown Stockholm – Who Say I? – Track Review.

Latest track Who Says I? is my prolonged overdue encounter with Shakedown Stockholm, and for a six piece who are ceaselessly ‘touted’ as rock, conflictingly all I can construe is an undefined, illusive elegance.

Tainted melodies; gristly, quelled guitar work and galvanizing drums; evidently, that radiating rock influence resides profoundly entrenched within the musicianship. So, why oppose its unshakable rock tag? Well hold on, I’m getting there – the irrefutably distinguished component here is the voice; take the enchanting authority of Siouxsie Sioux, supplement with hypnotic Cocteau Twins harmonies and not only do you get the silky grace of Shakedown Stockholm (whose vocalists coincidentally are also twins) but personally, you achieve complete isolation from any orthodox musical classification. In one word, unique.

Finn

Venombase Presents; Luke Gallagher, Bonamalis and The Black Widows @ The Exchange

First gig in Hanley for Wrexham lad Luke Gallagher, first ever gig for Bonamalis and one of The Black Widows last gigs, it was a night presented by Venombase studios at The Exchange.
Smartly dressed, friendly faced Luke Gallagher kicked the night off. For a young fella, he has grown into a great songwriter and intriguing solo performer. Luke takes influences from the 60s and 90s era heavily and for just one guy the music is raw and pure. As well as musically talent and captivating, Luke’s stage presence for an intimate gig is spot on, his cheery personality and charming charisma is something that you come away and remember, he makes every gig personally which the local crowd love. Someone to definitely  keep your eye out on.

Bonamalis were well and truly welcomed into the local music scene on Friday night. Their promising sound, didn’t disappoint the crowd or anyone for that matter, I saw no miserable faces. There is a raw natural feel about the four piece, the connection together for the first gig was electric and the talent musically was great. Something that grabbed my attention was the decision of covering The Animals House of the Rising Sun. I’ve never seen that performed live and they twisted it into a modern Bonamalis way. There is an obvious indie rock, 60s era 90s britpop era influence that seeps through their music. The popular crowd and good vibes from the audience massaged the lads egos and gave Bonamalis a stand out personality. They’ve ticked off a solid first gig as this band.

One of The Black Widows last gigs turned into a headline due to Suburban Radio pulling out. They never disappoint with their good old folky rock and roll sound. Over the past four years they’ve created some vibrant songs, especially in the album Love&Lust. All five members tell the tales behind the songs through their talent, they all add a different texture and create a different sense of musically drama in each individual track. The Black Widows are excellent live performers, especially fronted by Scott, his friendly personality makes the band loveable and memorable. The crowd were loving the live music, dancing and singing along with the good old favourites!

Lucee