With Just A Hint Of Mayhem

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

‘Duchess’ – Honours May 23, 2018

Filed under: Review — justwilliam1959 @ 9:50 pm
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One of York‘s finest bands, Honours, release their second single “Duchess” hot on the heels of their stunning début with “Freedom”. I truly believe that this band have the talent to become one of the classic British bands. They contain the DNA of everyone from the Kinks, Blur and Paul Weller. In fact the first time I listened to “Duchess” I thought of the Modfather. The guitar lines are comparable with some of Steve Cradock‘s finest. This new song isn’t as instant as “Freedom” however it is still a very classy tune indeed that grows in stature with each listen. If “Duchess” and its predecessor “Freedom” are a harbinger of the first Honours album then that record will be a towering success. Check it out now on Spotify, iTunes and SoundCloud!

 

 

Farewell To Fear – ‘Voices’ May 22, 2018

Filed under: Review — justwilliam1959 @ 10:56 pm
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All you need to do is click here and you will be transported to the rock music wonderland that is 3 Songs & Out. The link will take you to my review of the rather lovely new album from Farewell To Fear, ‘Voices’. But feel free to stick around on the 3 Songs & Out site, they know their music and they are rather fine people too! Of course when you’re done over there come back and pootle around on With Just A Hint Of Mayhem for a while too!

 

“M62” – Little Comets May 18, 2018

Filed under: Review — justwilliam1959 @ 8:26 pm
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I haven’t seen the Little Comets anywhere nearly enough. The first time was back in 2009 at Fibbers in York and the last time was at the Reading Festival in 2015. But I have followed their rise via the web and online blogs and webzines. So I was very keen to be the owner of a 7 inch vinyl release by them when the release of “M62” was announced a few weeks ago. I decided to review the single but not when all I had was the CD version. But last weekend the red vinyl version arrived with a very special dedication from the band on the cover!

“M62” is a relatively simple song with a great hook and some very witty and clever lyrics. My favourite is “Oldham looms like an older brother, I want Bury to be my lover”. This tune probably mentions more UK northern towns than almost any other song, apart from perhaps “It’s Grim Up North” by the JAMMS/ KLF. It feels a little more pop slanted than many Little Comets songs, but that adds to its beauty. Forget “Route 66” we need more songs about British roads.

On top of all that there is the B side, yes vinyl singles bring that back don’t they. The song is “The Punk Is In The Detail” and in my opinion it is most definitely not the ignored sibling but very much a classic b side song. One that easily holds its ground against the A side. I sense a layer of politics in the tune and that adds to the appeal. Just like “M62” it has the hallmarks of a very smart earworm. I am looking forward to seeing this fine band playing live again soon! Oh and by the way Little Comets, if you want to join the quiz, just click here, we would love to have you on board!

 

‘Counting Pennies In The Afterlife’ – Colour Me Wednesday May 17, 2018


The sophomore album from the exquisitely fabulous Colour Me Wednesday is released today on Dovetown Records. It has the best album title that I have seen in years, ‘Counting Pennies In The Afterlife’ and on first listen I can say without a single shadow of a doubt that it is a pop masterpiece. Their first album ‘I Thought It Was Morning’ from 2013 was very, very good but for me this one tops it. I believe it has a really summery feel to it and at times is evocative of the finest late 60s US west coast rock. But at its core it remains, as you would expect from Colour Me Wednesday, a truly British album. If you were looking for a dud track here you wouldn’t find it.

Album opener “Sunriser” kicks off the whole collection with sonic energy and harmonies to die for. The harmonies on this LP surely have their roots in some of the finest Motown and Phil Spector harmonies. I would also argue that some of the jangly indie guitar riffs are almost Byrdsian in their construct. The production is crystal clear throughout and there is sometimes a real incongruity between the depth (and sometimes darkness) of the lyric and the happy vibe of the music. That contradiction, most notable on “Sad Bride”,  is something that the Smiths were masters at, well Colour Me Wednesday are just as skilled with that as Morrissey and Marr were. Are Colour Me Wednesday a punk band? Maybe not in sound but in attitude, approach, boldness, appetite, belief and passion they are 100% punk.

Like their label mates the Tuts this band is political, but not just fashionable pin badge political, they understand life and what it is like to be human and that is writ large in their words. Their songs tell their stories with intelligence, integrity and a soulfulness that is unmatched by many of their contemporaries. One particular lyric, from “Exposure” made me think deeply, “you get one life and you can do more than just survive”. Surely a mantra for living in the 21st century. After two spins so far my favourite songs are “Tinfoil”, “Boyfriend’s Car” and “Edge Of Everything” but that is highly likely to change each listen, largely because every one of the eleven tracks is an indie pop masterstroke. The post song little girl spoken/ sung interlude at the end of “Not My Turf” is bizarre, weird, menacing, disturbing and wonderful. That has to be an adult voice treated by production wizardry right? Jen, Harriet, Jaca and Laura have put together a record that is clearly a contender for album of the year. Is it also the best album ever? Some people believe it might be!

 

 

‘The Great Divide’ – Rival Bones

Filed under: Review — justwilliam1959 @ 6:15 pm
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Thanks to perhaps one of the finest gangs in town I have had the opportunity to check out the rather spiffing new single from Rival Bones. Who is that gang I hear you ask, well it is none other than a gang I am proud to be a member of, the 3 Songs & Out Gang. Click here to read my review and check out what the gang have been up to while you’re on the site! I should also add that the band enjoyed the review and that kind of thing always gives me a warm fuzzy feeling!

 

 

Lower Than Atlantis – Fibbers, York – Sunday 13th May May 15, 2018

Filed under: Review — justwilliam1959 @ 11:25 pm
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Last Sunday I had the absolute pleasure of going to see one of Watford’s finest bands, Lower Than Atlantis playing live at Fibbers in York. It was courtesy of those doyens of decibels over at 3 Songs & Out. Click here to read my review and feel free to stick around on 3 Songs & Out.

 

Beans On Toast – The Crescent, York – Tuesday 8th May 2018 May 13, 2018


Having seen Beans On Toast a.k.a Jay McAllister at the Latitude Festival I knew that I would definitely take the opportunity to see him again. So as soon as I heard that he would be playing live in my adopted home city of York I was among the first in line for tickets. This gig at the Crescent was part way through a UK tour. The support for this tour is none other than Dan Lucas a.k.a Boss Caine, one of York’s finest musicians and songwriters. Boss Caine’s set was an understated masterpiece including songs new and old. He opened with “Ghosts and Drunks” an excellent new song, well new to me anyway. Perhaps my favourite was a little ditty about a friend with an addiction problem and how breakfast was with that person. It was called “Morphine And Marmalade” and it needs to be on the next Boss Caine album (are you listening Dan?). “Leaving Victoria” which Dan dedicated to Whispering Bob Harris is in my opinion one of Boss Caine’s finest tunes and it provokes so many emotions in me. While this was a Boss Caine solo acoustic set Dan was joined by a talented trumpeter for a rollicking romp through “Champagne” from his new album. This was a classic Boss Caine set that lined us all up nicely for Beans On Toast.

Beans On Toast has a habit/ tradition of releasing a new album every year on his birthday in December and this tour was to support the tenth anniversary of ‘Standing On A Chair’ his debut album from 2009. What? 2009? That’s not ten years I hear you say. Well Jay pointed out he miscalculated and hadn’t counted 2009 as year zero. But by the time he had realised everything had been booked. But 9th anniversaries are the new in thing aren’t they? As well as an incredible collection of amazing songs Jay provides some incredibly interesting between song stories. He opened with the delightful and very English “Afternoons In The Sunshine”. This was followed in quick succession by “Don’t Believe The Bullshit” and “Fuck The Smoking Ban”. Jay said that he had split the set into couplets of three songs but then he realised that couplet actually meant two not three. Self deprecation is a virtue and Beans On Toast has it in bundles. Incidentally he is now no longer in favour of fucking the smoking ban as he has given the nicotine up. He has a song about that too!

The song “Lizzie’s Cooking” (Lizzie is his partner) came about with an appearance on a German cooking TV show for which no one had told him that he was there to produce a meal from his recipe. Sticking with the culinary theme next up was “Eggs Benedict” which is in fact a song about sex with an older woman. He told a bloody hilarious story about a chant that began at a festival he had played, that chant was ‘get your dick out’. Jay tried that and almost dropped himself in it, but thankfully he lived to play another day and his tackle remained covered at all times! For me “M.D.M. Amazing” is one of my favourite Beans On Toast songs. Incredibly Jay revealed that some of the story in that song is bullshit. No way, surely  not! The magnificent Walker Sisters provided some excellent gymnastics to support the hilarious “Unlikely Gymnast”. “Nanny Mac” and “Major Oak” were poignant, beautiful and thought provoking. For “No Charlie” we were offered the chance to ‘make our own adventure’ and we chose for Jay to perform this brilliant slice of folky, acoustic reggae in a reggae voice. Bloody brilliant! I am a carnivore, but “The Chicken Song” does make you think how cruel meat processing is. Not many people have summed up the Royal Family in a song as well as Beans On Toast captures in “Harry In A Helicopter” about, yes you guessed it, Prince Harry. This was one of those wonderful gigs were I couldn’t stop smiling and singing for ages after leaving! My wonderful wife Catwoman a.k.a. Catherine absolutely loved the show as well! If you haven’t yet experienced a live set by Beans On Toast, you need to change that!

Obligatory public service announcement: all photographs were discovered via Google searches. If you are the photographer I am more than happy to credit them to you. All videos were found on YouTube.

 

 
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