With Just A Hint Of Mayhem

Music trivia, useless info, extra added random stuff and the odd rant from me

Bull, Crybaby, The Sunset Radio & Glass Traps – City Screen Basement, York – Thursday 23rd November 2017 November 25, 2017

Filed under: Review — justwilliam1959 @ 9:58 pm
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Four bands for under a tenner at the City Screen Basement in my adopted city of York. Stuff Black Friday this is indeed a bargain given the calibre of the bands on stage at this gig. First up were the Glass Traps and this lot would have fitted perfectly into the post punk environment of the late 70s/ early 80s. I can sense a bit of Tom Verlaine and Television along with a smattering of 60s style psych garage rawness. This young band is very tight and play like they have put in the time rehearsing. Their versatility is strong given that three of them are able to sing lead vocals. A very talented band from York! Click here to hear their excellent new song “No Tomorrow”

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The next band is not one that I had heard before, but I definitely will again, positive proof that York has a thriving music scene with some truly marvellous bands. The Sunset Radio produce excellent power pop and oh so much more. Personally I heard shades of the Jam and the Levellers at times with a nice slice of the Manic Street Preachers. In fact I reckon their lead vocalist could give James Dean Bradfield a good run for his money. They might not look like punks but they project a great punk style and attitude in their music. Introducing some powered up punk snippets of “La Bamba” and “Twist And Shout” into their final song (which I think was called “Burning Up”) was genius!

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Second on the bill were the the magnificent Crybaby. I saw them over a year ago at the Crescent in York. Click here for my review of that gig.Crybaby are yet another stunning band from York. I suspect that I may be guilty of overusing words like punk and punky in this review. But Crybaby are a punky, hard rocking bunch with a dash of the Killers about them. Some of their songs suggest to me what perhaps Oasis might have become had they taken a more heavy approach after their first two albums. A big shout to their drummer too, he is bloody ace. Has he been injected with some of John Bonham’s DNA?

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Finally it was time for the headliners another of York’s finest bands, the mighty riffmonsters that are Bull. A band that I last saw in 2015, click here for that review. This is a band that everyone needs in their life. At times they appear shambolic, but it is easy to see that they are in fact totally on top of their game. Their gargantuan Godzilla sized sound is built around some stunningly simple yet exquisite songs. Those tunes evoke everyone from the Ramones to Elvis Costello via Nick Lowe and the Pixies. They have moments of quietness that jump to frenzied sonic magnificence. Punk happened back in the 70s to allow the creation and generation of bands like Bull. To summarise, Bull are fucking brilliant!

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Images were ‘borrowed’ from each bands Facebook page and the videoes were found on Youtube.

 

 

Average White Band – Leeds Irish Centre – Wednesday 22nd November 2017 November 23, 2017


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It is now just over 45 years since I went to my first gig (the Jackson 5 if you’re interested) and here I am still going, as are the incredible Average White Band. I saw them once in London back in the 70s and they were great back then. I can honestly say that they still are, in fact they are better than great. The Irish Centre is a magnificent venue, although this is only the second time that I have been here, the last was many years ago for Chumbawamba.

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It always amazed me that a bunch of white Scottish blokes managed to out funk and pour more soul into their songs than some of the finest black soul and funk musicians that the USA could muster. When I first heard that phat slab of funk that is “Pick Up The Pieces” back in 1974 I assumed that it was by someone like the BarKays. I believed that for weeks until I read an article in the UK music press, probably Blues and Soul magazine.

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There may only be two original members of AWB left in Onnie McIntyre (guitar) and Alan Gorrie (bass, keyboards and lead vocals), both of whom can still find the funk, but they have picked some stunning players to join them in the seven piece band that blew the crowd away at the Irish Centre tonight. I think they all deserve a mention; Rob Aries (keyboards and bass guitar), Cliff Lyons (alto and tenor sax), Fred Vigdor (tenor sax and keyboards), Rocky Bryant (drums and percussion) and Brent Carter (Lead Vocals).

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When someone describes a band as ‘tight’ the Average White Band epitomise and define what it is to be a ‘tight’ band. At times they showed that they could have been backing James Brown and would never have been fined by the Godfather of Soul for playing a bum note. All the really big hits were aired tonight; “Pick Up The Pieces”, “Cut The Cake” and a stunning encore, with full crowd participation, of “Let’s Go Round Again”. Yes even I shook my rump to the funk on that one. The occasional deeper cuts were played, with “When Will You be Mine” being a particular highlight. The Average White Band have enjoyed success with some cover versions of songs that they really made their own. Particularly soul standard “Walk On By” and a version of “Work To Do” that in my opinion tops the original by the Isley Brothers. Both of these tunes were given full and funky workouts tonight along with a new take on another Isley Brothers classic “Harvest For The World”. This was a truly exceptional performance from a band that remain at the top of their game. I would also like to thank my gig buddy Audrey for making this such a fun night.

 

BAD SOUNDS – COMMUNITY ROOM, BRUDENELL SOCIAL CLUB, LEEDS – WEDNESDAY 15TH NOVEMBER 2017 November 16, 2017


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Click here to read my review of Bad Sounds in Leeds. You will be so disappointed that you weren’t there! A big thank you to those lovely folk at the Hype Media for getting me a review slot!

 

‘Roach’ – Aerial Salad November 12, 2017


Manchester has produced many fine bands over the years and with pop punk trio Aerial Salad I think you can add another to that esteemed list. Formed in 2016 and Jamie Munro (Guitar & Vox), Jack Appleby (Drums) and Michael Wimbleton (Bass Guitar) claim influences from Jawbreaker, Green Day and Weezer to name but a few. I can hear elements of old school punk like the Damned, Sham 69 and the Clash along with a hint of ska punk a la Reel Big Fish. ‘Roach’ is a classy début with hard-hitting life stories and a wall of punk sound that smacks you in the face from the opening bars of “Habits And Problems”. When I listening to “97” I am gobsmacked as to how three people can make such a full on barrage of solid guitar attack.

“Worst Case Ontario” sounds musically like the Undertones and Jamie Munro gives it his best Jimmy Pursey vocal. Aerial Salad are bona-fide rockers who have some great songs, magnificent musicianship, punk attitude and to top it all it feels like they enjoying the bloody hell out of it all. The album has twelve tracks and there is not a dud among them, all I wanted to do after my first listen was to play it again. My favourite tracks after two listens are “Alone Forever” and “Dunhills” but that will probably change after the third. This record is most definitely crammed with top tunes. The album is out now on London-based label Plasterer Records. I definitely want to see this band live, how about Reading/ Leeds 2018? You can still catch them on their UK tour this month. If you have been to any of the shows feel free to let me know what you thought in the comments below. Dates are (can you come to York or Leeds next time please lads?);

08 Nov – Exeter, Cavern
09 Nov – Southampton, Joiners
10 Nov – Brighton, Sticky Mikes
11 Nov – Bristol, Louisiana
12 Nov – London, New Cross Inn
13 Nov – Watford, Flag
14 Nov – Bradford, Big Bang Theory
15 Nov – Glasgow, Bar Bloc
16 Nov – Newcastle, Jumping Jacks
17 Nov – Scunthorpe, Lincoln Imp
18 Nov – Morecombe, The Carleton
19 Nov – Stafford, Redrum
20 Nov – Worcester, Marrs Bar
21 Nov – Canterbury, Lady Luck
22 Nov – Norwich, The Owl Sanctuary
23 Nov – Chester, Live Rooms
24 Nov – Derby, Hairy Dog
25 Nov – Abertillery, Dolls House

A big thank you to those lovely funky punky folk at Wall Of Sound PR for giving me the chance to review this album.

 

“I Wish I Missed You” – Kramies November 11, 2017

Filed under: Review — justwilliam1959 @ 9:47 pm
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Dutch-American singer songwriter Kramies, who hails from Ohio in the USA, has spent some time living in Ireland, in a castle no less. He has used these historic and serene surroundings to record new songs. The first of these that I have heard is the haunting, other worldly, ethereal “I Wish I Missed You”. I could go so far as to describe it as a lament, but it also strikes me as a man trying to find feelings that he thinks he ought to have about a past lover. Either way Kramies pours so much heart, soul and emotion into this tune that it haunts your brain in a good ghost kind of way. Check out the beautiful video to accompany the song below.

With thanks to those lovely people at Noisy Ghost PR for giving me the chance to hear this song.

 

Laura Kindelan – Centre for Early Music, York – Saturday 4th November 2017 November 7, 2017


I first saw Laura Kindelan back in July when she was part of the bill supporting Billie Marten at the Basement in York. She was an absolutely delightful and talented performer back then which made me really keen to see her play again. This showcase gig at the beautiful venue that is York’s Centre For Early Music was to promote “Sippin’ Whisky” which is her newest release. Was she as good this time as she was in the summer? You will have to read on to find that out. Zak Ford was tonight’s support act, this young man is a little folky, a little soulful and he has written some excellent songs based on tonight’s evidence. Notably “Honest Man” and “My Body”. My only criticism is that at times his enunciation could have been clearer. But that aside it was a very good set of songs and a heartfelt performance.

Now bearing in mind that Laura is barely 18 she has a talent and an ability that is way beyond her years. Yet she still maintains the enthusiasm and hope that youth brings. Her songs tell stories and evoke some of the best ‘kitchen sink dramas‘. She is a consummate song-smith and wordsmith and she really seems to love her time on stage. listening to Laura’s recordings on CD, Spotify and the like it is easy to hear that she has a precocious, natural talent. But for me she is also one of those relatively great artists whose live shows make the recorded music really come alive. Laura supports her emotionally strong and soulful voice with some relatively sparse guitar accompaniment. Let’s not forget that she is also quite a skilled guitarist.

In my earlier review I likened Laura to the late great Jeff Buckley and I still believe that her approach and style oozes the spirit of Mr Buckley. But then on songs like “The Beginning” she could be channelling Kate Nash. But while these comparisons exist for me that does not take away from the fact that Laura Kindelan has the potential to become a towering talent. Lyrically she clearly shows a mature understanding of life and relationships, perhaps most notably on “Fists”. If pushed I think I would say that “Sweet Tooth” is still my favourite Kindelan classic, but that is facing tough competition from “Colours” and the aforementioned “Sippin’ Whisky”. Her cover of the Billie Holiday standard “Good Morning Heartache” reaches in to the heart of the song and turns it into a more modern electric, but still so sad, blues lament. While I am not saying Laura is the new Billie Holiday she does totally own the song with a stunning arrangement and a very clever use of a loop effect. In my opinion covers should take a step away from the original and this takes a long stride, similar to the strides Jeff Buckley took with covers of “Lilac Wine” and “Hallelujah”. I really hope that Laura makes the right choice and gets the University that she wants, but selfishly I also hope her time as a Uni student doesn’t take her too far from her wonderful music. You really need to check out her music, you will not be disappointed and many of you will join the growing ranks of Laura Kindelan fans!

All videos searched and sourced from YouTube and the photos are courtesy of the Magnificent Marc McGarraghy at Yellow Mustang Photography.

 

 
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