With Just A Hint Of Mayhem

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

Mayhem Virgins – Bonnie Mai September 4, 2022


This is the eighteenth in our Mayhem Virgins series and features talented British artist Bonnie Mai. Sometimes you can come across new music and artists in strange and random ways, can’t you? I met Bonnie Mai at the Leeds Festival last weekend, she wasn’t performing there (not yet anyway), she was at the BBC Introducing Stage. We got talking and I discovered that Bonnie Mai is a singer and has released a clutch of great songs, so having heard them I think she is an excellent choice for our Mayhem Virgins series. For those who don’t know what the series is, it is simply an opportunity for us to showcase artists who have never appeared on these pages before. So please welcome Bonnie Mai to the expanding Mayhem Virgins club, most of who will feature regularly after that initial post. Bonnie Mai struck me as a cool and decent human being on that first meeting, although her online presence gives her a nice air of mystery like she just appeared on the planet a few years ago to grace us with some great music. Check out her Spotify profile detail below, I love it!

Not your standard potted history is it? That is what makes it stand out. Anyway, let’s talk about Bonnie Mai‘s music as we open the doors to the House Of Bonnie Mai. She has six singles and EPs available on Spotify, check them out. My favourite so far is probably “Slush Papi” which oozes confidence and sexiness over a modern R & B sound with some harmonic overdubbed vocals that drag you into the song and won’t let you go until the song ends, but even then you can’t forget it. The video is great too, you can see that below. “Chasing The Feeling” is a percussive tour de force of a kind of message song, with Bonnie Mai delivering a sultry and powerful vocal. The acapella version showcases just how good Bonnie Mai’s voice is. Meanwhile “Fall In Love” has a hybrid ska/ reggaeton/ electronica style, once again with some ace percussion and the keyboards give the song an almost oriental feel. The Ian Solo remix of “When Time Stands Still” is an anthem for female empowerment and I suspect may be directed at a former partner. The synth sound on here is reminiscent of early Depeche Mode. The enigmatic Bonnie Mai is a woman of many talents who deserves wider exposure, you need to check out her music, you will not be disappointed!

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Mayhem Virgins – Lynx Deluxe August 22, 2022


This is the seventeenth in our Mayhem Virgins series and it features Lynx Deluxe an Anglo-American rock band. But the rock band moniker does not do them justice, they encompass rock, blues, rock ‘n’ roll, funk, soul, post-punk, glam rock, and many more musical forms. The band consists of

Andy Browne (vocals, guitar)
Lucy Theodora (bass, vocals)
Brad Mattson (drums, samples)
Dean Browne (guitar, vocals)
Billy Fields (keys, arp)


Andy Browne (vocals and guitar) was raised in Birmingham in the UK. He fronted Atlanta band Nightporters and with them got to support some great bands; The Clash, REM, the Beat, and the Replacements. Lucy Theodora (bass and vocals) is Andy’s partner and muse she was raised in Georgia and studied psychology at Georgia State University. Brad Mattson was born and raised in Minnesota and delivers a perfect beat with his drumming. Billy Fields (keys, Moog, and vocals) was born in Atlanta. The band members have an eclectic musical taste which includes David Bowie, Bob Dylan, Marvin Gaye, Curtis Mayfield, Barry White, Stevie Wonder, Japan, the Clash, Mick Ronson, and Bill Nelson of another band that uses Deluxe in their name, Be Bop Deluxe. They released their first album, ‘Jungleland’ last year.

The album is a classy collection of songs that has many influences and yet remains very original. “Jane Goodall” reminded me of the Cramps and is a song about the English Primatologist Jane Goodall. I can hear a Clash influence in “A Little Piece Of England”. It is hard to believe that “The Struggle” was written before Covid struck, given how pertinent to these times it is. My current favourite track on the album is “Steppin’ On Gold” which has tones of Tom Petty, Paul Weller, and Roger Daltrey. The eleven tracks are all damned good and there is no filler on the album at all. It has anger, love, spirit, passion, and hope in every note, riff, and groove. The production is clear, crisp, and incredibly clear. It has a live feel to it. I have listened to the album a couple of times now and I am definitely hooked on Lynx Deluxe! Click here to check out the album on Spotify.

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Mayhem Virgins – Velvet Insane August 18, 2021

Filed under: Mayhem Virgins — justwilliam1959 @ 5:32 pm
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Unlucky for all you triskaidekaphobics out there but this is the thirteenth Mayhem Virgins entry. This time it is the turn of Velvet Insane who have taken Glam Rock, dusted it off, wrung its neck and made it ready for the 21st Century. These Glam Glitterati are from Sweden and take the best of the Sweet, Bowie, Mott The Hoople and others and make a sound that, while still glam based, is uniquely their own. Their social media presence and bio on Spotify describe them as “a 3-piece gang of rockers that reinvented glam rock by mixing the pop harmonies of the 70’s with the heavy sound of today” They add that they “have been moving forwards since their debut album and now they’re ready to deliver a swaggering statement” and “In fact Velvet Insane’s star is shining so bright they might be the next thing to explode!” Having listened to their debut album, ‘Rock ‘N’ Roll Glitter Suit’ a few times those statements are hard to disagree with. I think this bunch would be a brilliant support act on the next Darkness tour, so Justin and the boys, if you’re reading this please give them a shot!

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Mayhem Virgins – Promethium May 6, 2020

Filed under: Mayhem Virgins — justwilliam1959 @ 6:14 am
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The last Mayhem Virgins post was back in November, so it’s about time for another one I reckon. To refresh your memory the Mayhem Virgins series, which began in November 2017, only covers artists that I have never mentioned or featured before. This is the seventh recipient of the Mayhem Virgins title and it is the turn of Promethium, a five-piece metal band from Lancaster, Lancashire in England. Promethium have been on a slow but always upward trajectory since forming more than ten years ago in 2007. They released their fourth album last year, ‘Revisions’, an acoustic take on some of the best songs from their earlier albums; ‘Welcome To The Institution’ (2010), ‘Origins’ (2013) and ‘Faces Of War’ (2018). Their influences range from across the hard rock and metal spectrum from Black Sabbath to Metallica via Anthrax and Slayer with a little Pantera thrown in. But do not be fooled into thinking they are copyists, Promethium are definitely very much a magnificent metal band in their own right.

‘Welcome To The Institution’ clearly laid out the Promethium metal manifesto and showed that they had far more depth than “just another metal band”. “Visions” has the power to blow up a planet with its huge pulsating riffs courtesy of Dan and Rossi. In fact, the whole album exudes immense power, but Promethium also show their slightly softer side on opening track “Distant Illusion”. Meanwhile “33.1” starts out sounding like a very dark 80s power ballad before moving immaculately into early Linkin Park territory. This was an incredibly confident and mature debut album and their sophomore release needed to be pretty special after the powerful statement of intent made by that first release. ‘Origins’ was very special too, “Won’t Break Me” pushes the riffometer up to eleven and shows just how important their rhythm section is with drums being attacked with the force of Mjolnir and body-shaking bass playing. The vocals are up by another notch from an excellent performance on the first album, especially so on “Rain” and “Gunslinger”. Once again the band show their more mellow side with album closer and title track “Origins”. It is nice to hear a band step beyond their prime sound in this way. It is something that Led Zeppelin were always good at.

A band’s third album is often referred to as the “difficult” one. I don’t know if this is the case for Promethium, but it sure doesn’t sound like it. ‘Faces Of War’ sees the band stepping up to yet another level with what sounds to me like a concept album about the futility and horror of war. This is a really tight band revelling in their talent and rocking like bastards. I heard a ghost of Iron Maiden in some of the tracks here. “Enemies Fate” kicks off the album in the hardest and heaviest way possible and it barely lets up for breath after that. This is an album that hits you with a tsunami-like force from start to finish and still leaves you feeling good at the end. “P.O.W” is probably my favourite track on this collection although “Shellshock” has a great hook and again takes a small sideward step away from their full-on metal assault in places. Their latest album is an acoustic rework of some of the best songs from their back catalogue and it showcases the strength of the songs as they work as perfectly in this softer acoustic setting as they do in the full band hard and heavy versions. Promethium have had some pretty tasty support slots in their career to date; Blaze Bayley, Diamondhead, We Are The Catalyst, and fellow Lancastrians Massive Wagons. They had big plans for 2020 with festival appearances and the recording of a new album. I am sure that the COVID-19 lockdown has put the brakes on this but hopefully, they can get moving on the new album soon and hit the festival fields in 2021. I have so far missed out on seeing them play live but I hope to rectify that as soon as it is possible post lockdown.

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Mayhem Virgins – September Sky November 17, 2018


This is the first in a series of posts about artists that are completely new to the With Just A Hint Of Mayhem Blog. Just because we have only just heard of them doesn’t mean they are new to you. But whether they are or not we would love to hear your thoughts. The series will be called Mayhem Virgins (there is no link to any company associated with Richard Branson’s Virgin empire!). Incidentally With Just A Hint Of Mayhem is now available on FaceBook and Twitter.

The first act to feature in this new series are all the way from Indianapolis, Indiana in the USA and they are called September Sky. If you like your metal heavy and your rock hard then this band are for you. They have a collection of riffs that would challenge any other metal band. If you are a fan of Avenged Sevenfold, Metallica, Trivium and the like then you will certainly love September Sky. Their classy riff-laden, harmonic sonic assault called “Fallacy” gets into your head from first listen and the video for that song is pretty darned good too.  September Sky is; Scott Bernhardt – Vocals, Larry Craig – Guitar, Scott Rainey – Lead Guitar, Kevin Rickett – Bass
and Becket Weir – Drums. Their bio says that they have ‘made it a priority to write original tunes that empower and inspire its audience to conquer all that is life’. I reckon they are well on the way to achieving that! You can contact them on Facebook and Twitter

Are you a fan? Tell us what you think of September Sky!

 

 
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