It’s February and time for our second singles round up of 2021. Eight classy tunes from eight proper talented bands and singers, none of whom have featured on With Just A Hint Of Mayhem before. This bunch come from Essex, Norfolk, Rotterdam, Liverpool, Lancaster and Manchester. Crank your volume up to 11 and dive into a sea of wondrously great tunes!
“Story Of Strife” – Gloria
Austin Woodcock, Evan Butcher and Will Eagles are Gloria. They formed in 2018 in Lancaster. They claim that they write music for the soul. On the evidence of “Story Of Strife” I think that I believe them. This has deep feeling embedded in every part of it. At times I am reminded of Richard Ashcroft at his most introspective. The line “Freddie and Ziggy are in paradise now helping me write this song” is an absolute killer. “Story Of Strife” is an anthem we didn’t know we needed, but we really do!
“Soho” – Ben Wood & The Bad Ideas
Essex boy Ben Wood has been putting out great tunes since 2012. He has a very British sound with fragments of Paul Weller, Blur and the Arctic Monkeys among others. His lyrics for “Soho” can probably stand on their own as modern poetry. It is very much a story song and frankly if you are able to successfully mention Marianne Faithful in your song lyrics then you definitely get my vote!
“Gobshite” – Das Kapitans
A wonderful punky riff-fest from Das Kapitans with delightful punk harmonies throughout. The backing vocals are reminiscent of Steve Jones back in his Pistols prime. The video is a psychedelic jamboree and probably not for anyone who suffers from epilepsy. This is a great single and I reckon it will sound even better live. On his BandCamp biog Norfolk based Das Kapitans main man Stephen Potter describes himself as a Potato expert. Well if this song was a potato I believe it would be a Russet Burbank, probably the best potato in the world!
“Looking For Faces” – The Vices
Recently signed to Rotterdam based Mattan Records this lot are pretty ace. They sound like a punked up, funked up and fucked up version of the Strokes with a dash of Talking Heads. I reckon this band is an instant party machine live. This track has taken up residence in my head and it doesn’t seem to want to leave anytime soon!
Roses” – Karl McCann
With it’s dark and sparse video “Roses” makes its whispered way into the world. It seems, to me, to be about a broken, abandoned relationship. Karl’s delivery oozes emotion and the song resonates long after it is over. It makes me want to hear much more from Liverpool based Karl McCann.
“Getting Better” – Flowers Of Evil
Positive Indie Lounge Core from Manchester’s Flowers Of Evil. “Getting Better” is essentially a positive tune and one that would be ideal to accompany us on the journey out of this Covid hell. Lead vocal and well drilled harmonies drift wonderfully over subdued but close to perfect instrumentation. I sense that you will be hearing a lot more from Flowers Of Evil!
“Rain’s Gonna Fall Where We Walk” – Hurray For Tuesday
Manchester’s Hurray For Tuesday refer to themselves as anti-folk. I assume that they mean they are anti folk music rather than just anti folk as in people. Either way it won’t work, this tune is steeped in the history of folk with a modern twist that evokes the Pogues and for me there is an undercurrent of glam rock in the driving incessant and fabulous beat. In the days when the charts mattered this would be instant top ten. It made me want to dance around the room, so I did! Based on this I want to see them on a festival stage when festivals are reborn! They make me want to shout Hurray for Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and every fucking day of the week.
“Slow It Down” – Doozer McDooze
Doozer’s new single is the perfect sound to chill to after a heavy night out, do you remember what they were like? It is a hypnotic lofi style tune which stays with you like your favourite pillow or that old teddy bear you’ve had since you were a kid. I cannot think of a nicer tune to end this singles round up with. Doozer McDooze is, put simply, bloody ace!
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Below is a play list of all these great tunes, apart from Karl McCann’s “Roses” which I can’t find on Spotify.