With Just A Hint Of Mayhem

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

‘Tons Of Tins – Ten Ton Tinnies September 5, 2020

Filed under: Review — justwilliam1959 @ 2:05 pm
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First of all what a great band name. And it just gets better from there. “Part-Time Hillbilly” sets out the stall . Big power chords and riffs with big meaty vocals. “Down In The Country” continues the style with no punches pulled . A rip snortin’ full tilt country boogie. “A Song For The Bruce” is a slower ballad  with a touch of Lynyrd Skynyrd and a great vibe. “Throwdown” , and the boogie is back faster than ever . The drums provide a beat that makes you want to kick up the dust. Live I bet this one’s a monster!

“Tons Of Rain” tells the story of a flood in epic style. “Take Me To Town” has a touch of ZZ Top about it. “WHPH” has a riff worthy of those Aussie legends AC/DC and a rap feel like Aerosmith in collaboration with Run DMC. “Over Me” is a ballad with strong vocals which demonstrates the range of this band and “Here’s To Drinking” is a great song about …well… drinking! “Bad Gas” has a rap feel which this band do so well . There’s a lot of innuendo and more straight bawdy humour here which is a refreshing change. This bands songs are as catchy as anything and this album is a great night out in recorded form . In short they do exactly what it says on the Tinnie! Excellent . 

Written by Paul Bamlett.

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‘Kaliyuga’ – In Hearts Wake

Filed under: Review — justwilliam1959 @ 12:21 pm
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In Hearts Wake are a fantastic heavy rock band from Australia with a very clear environmental conscience. They have organised carbon offset for all of their consumption creating this excellent album. This instantly draws our attention and commands respect. The album opens with striking sounds and complex and captivating riffing and rhythms. “Worldwide Suicide” features barking vocals and big heavy riffs . Drum and bass sounds feature, Slayer meets the Prodigy. “Hellbringer” has fast thrash riffs and interesting additional vocals. “Moving On” has a more dancey opening . This track has a more melodic and epic feel. Doomy vocals are still there but nicely balanced by a more melodic vocals.

“Timebomb has angry vocals and a great loping riff”. “Son Of A Witch” once again has a nice mix of angry vocals and a more melodic approach . “Crossroads” has a more melodic feel. “Husk” has a gentler intro which shows the multiple skills of this band. “Naga” is a brilliant instrumental intro to “Form Of Life” which has strong vocals. “Dystopia” is the strongest track here with a superb melancholic melody. “2033” is a heavy closer with a great mix of angry riffing and vocals and a more melodic approach . This is a winning combination!

Written by Paul Bamlett.

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‘Letters From Spain’ – Victor Dahlberg September 3, 2020

Filed under: Review — justwilliam1959 @ 9:19 pm
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This is a gentle easy on the ear album with some great melodic touches. “Give 2.0” opens with lovely piano and some nice harmonies to back up a soulful song. “Cry” has a more folk rock feel . There is a slight feel of Randy Newman in the vocals. “Found” has a country feel . The vocal itself has a touch of Stevie Wonder. On “Living Now” the horns add an additional dimension with a laid back feel and a beautifully controlled vocal. “You Know” features a reggae backbeat and once again the vocal is strong. This is not challenging music but that is its charm . A strong commercial feel and a great upbeat vibe which in these tough times is a very uplifting feeling.

Written by Paul Bamlett

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‘Staring At The Sun’ – Decay August 22, 2020

Filed under: Review — justwilliam1959 @ 8:04 am
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Decay are a post-hardcore band from Liverpool with a strong emo influence. They number Basement and Title Fight amongst their prime influences. The title track kicks things off and is a good leadoff single. “September 27th” has a slower more ballad feel, great vocals, and strong melodies. “Empty Feelings” has a panoramic sound with some big guitar sounds. “Hold On” has a menacing bass line leading to a passionate vocal. “Misery” features ringing guitars and a raw vocal. “Endless Silence” has an ambient opening and is a short piece. “10.23” is just guitar and vocals. This track shows the true depth of this band. This is a strong anthemic ending and is beautifully balanced and well-executed. The melody is very strong and this is a very satisfying closer to this confident debut from this young and exciting band. More of the same, please!

Written by Paul Bamlett.

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‘We Want Blood’ EP – Mandown

Filed under: Review — justwilliam1959 @ 7:59 am
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Mandown reference Rage against the Machine and the Prodigy. Certainly they bring the sound and attitude of both of these bands to what they do.
Vocalist Ian Turner and drummer Lawrence Arnold are just the kind of intense and committed musicians we need right now. “Try or Die” leads off with big monster riffing. The RATM influence is writ big but this is no bad thing. “We Want Blood” is a big confrontational song with demanding vocals over big boomy riffage. These tracks are short, intense and mesmerising and this is a stirring call to arms. This EP is 12 minutes of monstrously good riffs and epic melodic vocals so I say never mind we want blood, we want more Mandown!
Written by Paul Bamlett

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‘Documentaries’ – EP – The Long Faces August 19, 2020

Filed under: Review — justwilliam1959 @ 10:49 am
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Referencing the early incarnation of Soft Machine in their publicity this band include Prog, Psychedelia, contemporary jazz and choral music in their armoury. Melodic purity and harmonic surprise are key . First track “Sail Away” has an innovative opening with distinctive vocals and great guitar parts. An intriguing rhythm and a hint of Orange Juice. “Documentaries” has a good soundscape opening and a distinctive jazz feel. The vocals are strong with lovely falsetto. “And Where Have You Gone, Mr. Wolf?” has a more prog opening with wonderful melody and a superb bass breakdown. This is the strongest track here for me with fabulous harmonies. What the Long Faces present here are a multiplicity of potential musical futures. The dilemma will be which one to choose . Whatever their decision you can guarantee that the results will be fascinating.

Written by Paul Bamlett.

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‘5 Songs’ EP – DITZ

Filed under: Review — justwilliam1959 @ 8:27 am
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DITZ have been championed by Idles and Slaves and their music certainly fits the bill for these endorsements. This EP has excellent sound with spoken word and some great melodic interludes. It all kicks off with “Role Model”, the rising tension in the vocal is reminiscent of Slaves and harks back to early Wire and the Members. “Seeking Arrangements” is more full-on Hard core Punk with a great guitar sound full of energy and menace.
“Fuck The Pain Away”, which is a Peaches cover has a gritty full on sound and feel and a touch of the Stranglers at times. The scary noise and full on punk chord thrash make this EP an interesting ride. DITZ are exciting enough on record, live I imagine they are a whole other ball of fury!

Written by Paul Bamlett.

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‘The Other Side’ – Ionne August 18, 2020

Filed under: Review — justwilliam1959 @ 8:42 pm
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Ionne is a new and refreshing talent in the world of electronica. ‘The Other Side’ starts with a Tangerine Dream style opening which moves into a soundscape. This artist has a beautiful voice and this is real singing with a wonderful falsetto set over a fabulous dance track which features some excellent melodic touches. Track 2 is a remix of “The Other Side” which points up the exquisite idiosyncratic vocals and melancholic lyrics. “Distance” is a mesmerising synth instrumental . This is good thinking music, melodically uncomplicated but deeply interesting. The remix of “Distance” features soulful vocal harmonies and is a completely different take on the track.

Something More Than Love” features a very strong melody. This is a thoughtful song and for me the strongest song on the recording. There is a hint of Erasure here which makes it even more interesting . This track has huge commercial appeal. The remix of this track has a more Depeche Mode feel. There is a more experimental touch and the mix really plays with the track to great effect. This is a very strong collection of well developed and constructed tracks from Ionne and I have no doubt that we will hear a great deal more from this undoubtedly talented and skilful artist.

Written by Paul Bamlett.

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‘Baikal’ – Asian Death Crustacean July 30, 2020

Filed under: Review — justwilliam1959 @ 12:34 pm
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The opening to this  fascinating album is very interesting. Ringing guitars and straightforward rhythms. The music is heavy but very melodic and well developed. The synth sounds have an ambient feel with hints of melody. There is a more riffy feel places. Doomy guitars are plentiful but beautifully crafted melodic passages are never far away whether suggested or overt. The album is a clever mix of differing though not conflicting ideas. There is intensely heavy riffing of a Sabbath , Metallica style. In places there are reminders of ‘In Absentia’ era Porcupine Tree. The album concludes with ambient drone and bassy thrum. I really enjoyed listening to this but have one suggestion for this clearly talented group of musicians, change the name? I know people will say what’s in a name (look at the Beatles!) But I think it could help. Whatever , I hope to hear more from this band, whatever they are called. 

Written by Paul Bamlett. 

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‘Sudden Fictions’ – Bo Ningen

Filed under: Review — justwilliam1959 @ 12:13 pm
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Bo Ningen means Stick Man in Japanese and this band are a Japanese alt rock band (never really know what alt rock means). The album is produced by Drew Brown who has done desk duty for Beck and Atoms for Peace so the pedigree is good here. Any album that begins with a track called “You Make A Mark Like A Calf Branding” will be at the very least interesting. This track features a minimalist feel with spoken word and a simple rhythm. “AKA-Fuller” has a brilliant bass sound and a full on rhythm with intriguing vocals and lyrical ideas. “Silenced” has a simple rhythm with ringing instrumental ideas and a great poly rhythmic backing. “Zankoku” is all sonic experimentation , a little reminiscent of Hawkwind or Primal Scream at their experimental best.

“Minimal” has a more commercial feel and features Bobby Gillespie from the aforementioned Primals on spoken word and some vocals. This is the standout track of the album. “Kyukai” takes us back to the more experimental feel with whining guitars over a loping beat . Great insistent guitar interplay. “Kuzurenai” has a keyboard opening which draws you in . With a shifting beat and phased vocals this has slight feel of Yellow Magic Orchestra. “BC” has an interesting opening which makes you want to delve further . The songs main rhythm kicks in late. The final track “Riff” has an insistent rhythm and a multiplicity of guitars leading to a more basic rhythm. This band remind me in places of Can for some reason. A questing , fascinating group of musicians aiming to find new sounds and approaches while injecting everything they do with exciting rhythm and melodic finesse.

Written by Paul Bamlett. 

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