Category: features

Interview: WINACHI TRIBE by Matt D

As we have approached the halfway point, what have been your highlights of 2018 so far?

Liam Croker – Lead Singer – touring Los Angeles / Hollywood man…it’s was brutal in the most beautiful way…a bit of brutality never hurt anyone if it’s done right 😉

Which new bands/artists would you recommend in 2018?

LC – None…they’ve all got sausage hair cuts or are making fisher price Hip Hop. I’d recommend The Winachi Tribe and ‘Parliament Funkadelic’…go and educate your ears kids.

 

What was the band or artist that got you into music or inspired you to be a musician?

LC – Sly and The Family Stone / Happy Mondays / Guns N Roses and Tricky

 

 

You’ve been playing a lot of festivals this year, including Bearded Theory, how’s the response been?

LC – Response has been unreal…people don’t expect to see bands like us when they’ve been listening to baked bean heads all day…we’ve been headlining all the stages we’ve been playing and it’s been emotional to say the least…Bearded Theory was the best. If we wanna get turned ion at a festival and get a little moist…come see The Winachi Tribe!!!

 

What’s next for you?

LC -Touring the U.K all summer then back to the States in the Autumn for more…errrr….touring. There’s be more releases too.

You’ve got a new video out for the song “Transition”. How’s the response been so far?

LC – Fucking Outstanding!!!

Interview – ELEVATION FALLS by Matt D

As we begin 2018 what were your highlights of 2017?

Gabriel Grecco (Bassist/Drummer) We spent our year recording the new album, played Sheffield, stablished a strong formation, it was amazing

 

Chris Young (Lead Guitarist): Gigging and being in the studio. I don’t have one gig in my head that stands out because I love them all.

 

Alex Sanchez (drummer): throughout 2017 I have been focused on several Spanish bands where I highlight Katarsis, we recorded the first EP of the band

Darragh Shields (Lead Guitarist) The production of our new album what will be and it’s first performances live.

Hazel Jade Rogers (Lead Singer/Pianist) Going to Sheffield, UK for the Hard Rock Hell BoB which we won the opportunity to play at through public vote!

What are your goals for 2018?

GG:Play the new album as much as we can, record a new video, and possibly tour Europe

 

CY: To make 999999999999999 yen

 

AS: Now I’m focused on Elevation Falls which is an exciting project that can be a great thing, and makes me feel very alive. For me it has very important having been contacted by them. I have been researching a lot about their job and I am delighted to take part on this project. It is really compatible with my way of working within one team and making music.

DS: To hopefully go abroad playing our new album.

HJR: Go on tour abroad, and hopefully get some industry recognition for our music!

Which new bands/artists would you recommend in 2018? GG: Royal Blood, Minus the Bear, The Dear Hunter

 

CY: Us followed by a big plate of us also Damien rice is bringing out a new album.

 

AS: The Last Vegas are incredible I discovered them recently and they seem to be incredible. Superb performing! I would also strongly recommend Black Stone Cherry, another good one.

DS: Reprisal, catastrophe. HJR: Stone Broken, Samarkind

What was the band or artist that got you into music or inspired you to be a musician?

GG: Angra (band), Aquiles Priester (drummer), Helloween (band), Iron Maiden (band)

 

CY: Thin Lizzy the amazing lyrics by phillo and the epic Scott Gorham on guitar really ripens my slice.

 

AS: Undoubtedly one of the bands that made me fall in love with music was the Mexican rock band Maná and specially his drummer Alex Gonzalez. But I also like bands such as Kiss or Motley Crue . They made me tell myself “I want to be like them”.

But I would also like to say that I like playing another rhythms like funky, Bossanova, jazz, I mean I can also enjoying being versatile, although that´s true rock is first on my list.

DS: John Sykes, a British guitarist that played with Whitesnake and Thin Lizzy!

HJR: Pink, early years, she was way more rock and her ability at performance, singing and composition was inspiring to me. Just be yourself that was her motto.

Interview – Sons of Alpha Centauri – Marlon Ki…

Prior to the release of Continuum, we caught up with Marlon King from SOAC:

As we begin 2018 what were your highlights of 2017?

Marlon King (Guitars) – 2017 was an eventful year for both us as a band and for myself as I had my first born arrive in March 2017 which definitely added a new challenge to the mix. SOAC managed to record and finish the last few tracks to our album Continuum and the main highlight for me was having the opportunity to work with Aaron Harris on the mixing of the album. I’m a great fan of the music from Palms and Isis (the band) as is Nick (bass), so to have Aaron mixing the album was a great experience and he didn’t disappoint on the delivery.

 

What are your goals for 2018?

MK – The release of Continuum will be one of our biggest goals. We have been working towards this release for several years now and had a few detours along the way. It will be great to finally get this album out there. Post Continuum, we already have several ideas for new material that we plan to start working on. So to break it into goal terms I’d say the main one is to speed up our release process so there is less of a gap in between Continuum and our next album.

 

Which new bands/artists would you recommend in 2018?

MK – Not necessarily a new band but if you like the likes of Arcade Fire or post rock/indie type vibes you should check out Volcano Choir. Also check out Between Waves by The Album Leaf.

 

What was the band or artist that got you into music or inspired you to be a musician?

MK – I grew up listening to a lot of classic rock, Stones, Kinks, Jimi Hendrix etc. so I had a lot of good choices there. But it wouldnt be one single band or artist that inspired me. I was influenced in different directions from several. One of my favourite albums growing up was Jailbreak by Thin Lizzy, I loved the riffs (some of the first I learned on guitar) and the guitar solos really spoke to me.

There is another side though, and that is the journey. For me, whilst listening to an individual track is cool, I much prefer getting involved in the journey of an album. Nick on the other hand is more about the singles and loves to work on the more hard hitting riff in your face type stuff which is great as between the two of us, we get a good blend of riff and journey. So I’d say the likes of Pink Floyd and Moody Blues were my main inspiration from the Journey perspective.

The Hinterlands Volume 2 by David Lees

Welcome to column number two! This time out we have  some techno, a fair bit of ambient and a seasoning of hardcore electronica, so hopefully something to please everyone.

First up we have Offending Public Morality by DJ and producer Dax J, a release on his own label Monnom Black. This album has a little more depth than a lot of techno releases, lacing each track with simmeringly aggressive drum’n’bass and mixing vocal samples from old British movies to explore themes of racism and police brutality, a dystopian vision that feels all too relevant right now. Though guest vocals by Zanias on Waves of Isolation add some melancholy to the mix, overall this is the soundtrack to a dark urban fable with no happy ending in sight.

https://monnomblack.bandcamp.com/album/offending-public-morality

Just out from [aufnahme + wiedergabe] is Psychoterrorpriest by Acid Vatican which consists of two tracks, Repent Motherfucker and Preacherman. There’s a touch of the 80’s synthwave sound going on but it’s far more rooted in the world of Italian horror movies than that of mirrorshades and neon. It also includes a particularly meaty remix of Repent Motherfucker by Sarin which throws in some murdery vocal samples to add another layer of menace. One to listen to while driving through a rain-slicked city at night looking for murderers in leather hoods lurking down alleyways. As we all do from time to time.

https://aufnahmeundwiedergabe.bandcamp.com/album/psychoterrorpriest

Odd Scene/Shit Luck is a bit of a surprise single release from Blanck Mass, not related to or taken from any recent album and considerably more hardcore (as in the genre) than their usual output of experimental electronica and post-rock influences. Driving guitars, distortion  and growled vocals are the order of the day here. Is this a cathartic release or a change of pace after the experimentation of World Eater and its Re-Voxed remix album? Either way it grabs you by the head and shakes for a solid 8 minutes.

https://blanckmass.bandcamp.com/album/odd-scene-shit-luck

Slowing things down a bit we have some Dark Ambient from Shamsiel with Mighty Sun of God. Unsurprisingly for a project named after an angel there’s a heavily religious overtone to this, with the sounds of echoing, distant ritual worship and Latin (I assume) chanting creating a sense of vast, sepulchral spaces, like a journey through an abyssal cathedral or great slow slabs of sound drifting across a dark arctic ocean.

http://music.cephalopagus.com/album/mighty-sun-of-god

Heart Murmur is the new album by Darkrad, the dark-industrial music project of multidisciplinary artist Jana Komaritsa. A collection of subdued electronic soundscapes made to evoke themes of “inner blackness and disturbances of mind”, to me the album sounds like the ambient soundtrack of a psychological horror movie steeped in darkness punctuated by brief patches of neon light, dragging you further and further down into anxiety inducing weirdness as it progresses.

https://darkrad.bandcamp.com/album/heart-murmur

Review: Dewolff – The Dust Coda at The Black H…

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Here i am tonight at the iconic The black Heart, a small yet cosy place giving the audience the chance to get up close and personal with the bands they come to see.

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Although I have come to check out the main band, I always make a point to come early; being short-arsed I need to find a spot to perch on my stool but most importantly support bands can surprise you in the best way.

Warming up the stage for the main act are THE DUST CODA, bringing their soulful and bluesy tinged music to a responding audience.They knock out tunes after tunes from their self titled debut, storming the stage on a full throttle roar with opener ‘The More It Fades’, slowing down mid set to the smooth and seductive ‘Sweet Love Is Gone’ showcasing john’s groovy vocals whilst passing through the fist stumping riff of ‘When The Tide Comes In’. A strong and full blooded set keeping the Rock’n’Roll alive along the likes of The Temperance Movement and Rival Sons.

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Next up is psychedelic rockers from the Netherlands DEWOLFF. Although we are always told never to judge a book by its cover, their attire of santiag boots, flared trousers, wispy moustache and flowing hair bring an air of the 70’s; and on this occasion the cover matches the book to my delight.Their catchy 70’s infused songs kept us all enthralled and mesmerised from start to finish. A highly energetic set filled with blues, soul and psychedelic riffs bringing contemporary lyrics with music from the past. Having been around since 2007, their repertoire was diverse with a set mixed with songs from ‘Strange Fruits and Undiscovered Plants’, ‘Grand Southern Electric’, ‘Roux-Ga-Roux’ and latest album ‘Thrust’. 

Pablo, Luka and Robin are a thunderous 3 piece with boundless energy, virtuosi stretching each song as far as they can dare ( some lasting a good 10mns as you can see on the iPhone footage) and very much attuned to the southern USA music. It is hard to pinpoint which songs stand out but my 2 favourite will have to be politically geared ‘Deceit and Woo’ (allegedly written on Trump inauguration)  and inter-dimensional cosmic beauty written whilst philosophising drunk AND stoned in their hotel room ‘Love Dimension’. Seeing DEWOLFF live is certainly an experience I will never forget as it brought me close to an era I would have like to have been part to.

Pictures gallery here:https://goo.gl/Pwd3xQ

Here are some footage taken at the gig, I won’t win an Oscar for best feature film but it gives you first hand view of what words can not always convey.

Review and photos: THE SOAP GIRLS @ The Monarc…

Show date: 2nd May 2018

Sitting in the girls’ tour bus on the pavement outside the Monarch having a chat with sisters Millie and Mie Debray prior to them taking the stage was a confined and fun experience as they insisted I tried a shot of their chocolate tequila. I have to say, if you’ve never tried chocolate tequila, give it a go. The Soap Girls are now embarking on their ‘Stinks Like Punk’ tour lasting until the end of the year. Chatting to them is always a pleasure because they are honest, intelligent, fun, and say it as it is!

It’s been twelve months since their album ‘Societys Rejects’ and nine months since their last London appearance. So what have the girls been up to? They have nine new songs toward their next album of which the title is yet undecided although the girls intimated it may be something like “Catch, Release, Kill”

The album is half finished and due for completion after their current tour and released at the end of the year or early next year. The girls promise the next album will be better than “Societys Rejects” and will be brutal and dark covering topics like animal rights, human rights but also promises melodies. Some of the track titles include “My Development” about a mindless neighbour who complains about the girls practising their music, “Chains” about standing up for your rights. The girls sang a verse of this to me in the bus – promising!

The gig was as you would expect although to be honest, their new drummer (Sam from Stoke) is an improvement from the last time I saw them. The girls have accepted Sam and enjoy banter with him. They have developed their own version of a Stoke accent which isn’t too bad. All of the numbers they performed were in the set that you would want, predominantly from “Societys Rejects” and a couple from the upcoming album.

The Soap Girls will return to the road after the release of the next album with plans to tour the United States and possibly Australia. This will be breaking ground for the girls. For the UK fans, they will also be playing Camden Rocks this year on June 2nd.

Whilst the girls are great to listen to, and great to watch, their image of nudity isn’t really necessary and I do wonder if this detracts from them being taken more seriously. They have great talent and music ability and if they continue producing albums like “Societies Rejects” they will continue to grow respect and following. They continue to be a breath of fresh air, they are not shy in sharing their views or standing by their values so if you haven’t seen or heard them, give them a go but brace yourself!

Interview: CANCEL by Matt D

With their new album Dark Reveries being released on May 12th we catch up with the swiss hardcore mob that is Cancel about 2018 so far and more…

As we
begin 2018 what were your highlights of 2017?

Yves Bucher (Drums): Bandwise it definitely was when we decided to write a new
album with our new guitarist Felix. It gives sort of a motivation boost. I’m a
forward looking person and need to have goals like that. Other than that I
started a new job at the end of 2016, so 2017 was the year of changes and
challenges, there were highlights at all times.

Felix Mechelke (Guitars): We had a Balkan tour in summer 2017, so
I really enjoyed that moment when we were somewhere in Italy, having a swim
(naked of course) in the sea right after a huge thunderstorm.

Remo Stalder (Vocals): For me it’s recording our second LP as well. I’ve learned
so much vocal-sound and recording-wise.

What are
your goals for 2018?

YB: To play and
tour whenever and wherever possible.

RS: I go with the
Yves’ answer. I think all of us know where we
wanna go as a band. It’s important to us to have similar goals.

FM: I want to share
our new record with as many people as possible, but I also want to learn more about sound, recording methods and gear in
general.

Which new
bands/artists would you recommend in 2018?

RS: God Mother
from Sweden are pretty furious. End is kind of
a supergroup with members of Counterparts, Fit
For An Autopsy, Reign Supreme etc. and their EP “From The
Unforgiving Arms of God” is heavy as hell.

What was
the band or artist that got you into music or inspired you to be a musician?

YB: When I was younger I emancipated from my parents music and
the first two heavy bands I started to listen were Metallica and System Of A
Down. They were  without doubt the two bands who made me want to have my own band. Later, Thrice showed kept my passion alive,
since they showed me how you can change as a band and still keep a fanbase by
just making great music.

RS: In the
beginning, it was just fun and to have a reason to be in a band room with
friends. These days bands like Converge, Norma
Jean, Dillinger Escape Plan and Every Time I Die inspire me. Not in a way to
copy their music, rather their ambition and methods to create something new and how to push yourself into new directions.

FM: Machine Head!

Interview: KRISTA D by Matt D

We recently caught up with musician/visual artist Krista D about her projects, digital consumption of music and more…

Firstly congratulations with the success of Land Mine. How has the reception been so far for the EP as a whole?

Thank you! I was actually surprised that Land Mine received any attention at all- especially given how unceremoniously I had released it. I’m so happy that people seem to like it.

The reception of the EP, in terms of actual sales, is nowhere near the response I had digitally- sales are a bit dismal actually, but that’s mainly my fault. I hadn’t planned anything for it. I just quietly released it to digital platforms and went back to working on my visual art. I had no tour plans in place, no performances or official release party scheduled…nothing.

Earlier on, I had contacted some companies to see if I could promote it to some radio stations here in Canada, and thought maybe I would be able to schedule some show dates in any receptive areas. A small scale, targeted kind of thing. I was mainly fishing to see if there was any potential viability to the project, since I had been out of music so long; I really didn’t know the market anymore. I was either ignored or rejected- being told that the single wasn’t considered a fit for anywhere.

So, with that, my hope for the project went from low to non-existent. I still released it, mainly for myself, and it was actually intended as my last release as Krista D.  But, where the digital response was so encouraging, I’m planning on booking some live shows in hopes of provoking EP sales and to fan the spark as best I can.

What led to your return to music in 2016 and what led to the decision to create three different bands?

I had returned to music simply because I missed expressing myself through singing and songwriting. On a deeper level I think I wanted to wrap up the musical part of my life in a more dignified way. The events and conditions surrounding why I stopped music in the first place were unsatisfactory, so I wanted to take back a piece of myself and end things on my own terms.

The decision to be 3 different projects was due to the fact that I tend to switch genres depending on the mood or topic. It had been suggested to me, several times, by industry people that I was too all over the place and that I lacked brandability. My previous release was very eclectic and part of me always wondered if that’s why I’d never been able to make a better go of things… but I really didn’t want to change how I created.

This time around I thought it might be interesting to treat my music catalogue the same way I had been treating my visual art- where I create different styled work and have gallery shows under 3 aliases.

I think I’m like the human version of a junk drawer.. the best I can do is sort myself into 3.

We have heard what to expect from Krista D with the EP plus the Hooha and The Peter Guns track Green Mazes – what can we expect from Molly Grue’s EP?

The Molly Grue EP, well… it’s going to be sad and a lot softer than my other two projects.

With the Krista D EP, I kind of candy-coat dark lyrical themes with perky music, and the Hooha material is mainly intended for my angry venting. Green Mazes was honestly not the best track for me to have put out as an example of this project- it was just the first track that was completed. It’s not meant as an official single.

The Molly Grue EP is based on topics like mental illness, child abuse, domestic abuse.. it’s not really a “feel good” album, but it comes from a real place. There’ll be 3 new tracks and 3 re-releases from an old album. I’m finishing up the last track, Ghost in the Room, right now, but where the isolated scratch vocal made a guy cry-  I’m currently debating whether I should relieve some of that with instrument production. I don’t think I need people *that* sad.

The 1st single, ‘Anyway’, is going to have it’s debut feature on May 25th for the 13th anniversary of the Pop Garden Radio show. I’m really curious to see how it’ll be received. That track, and ‘Hush’ ( a re-release from Janes’ World) will probably be the most radio friendly songs from the EP.

Given that music is being consumed more digitally – do you see more opportunities to create a crossover between your visual art work and your music?

I do – but I’ve not set things up to take full advantage of that yet. In the near future I intend to create an online store to sell both art prints and music. Creatively, I’ve already begun pairing my art and my music by creating each EP cover in the style of one of my art aliases.

Apart from the digital realm, I want to sell visual art prints at my merch tables and intend to sing at my art show openings- whenever the gallery allows for it.  The subjects which inspire my visual art are the same topics that move me to write songs- so it all links together; I think it makes sense to market everything I do collectively.

Are there plans to sign other artists to Loose Lamb records in the future?

Maybe! I think that would be extremely cool, actually. I’d love to get to the point of success that I could sign artists I believed in.

Loose Lamb Records was essentially created as means to park all 3 projects in one place. It’s currently only a vanity label- meaning it’s completely self-absorbed.

*But* if I ever do find enough success with any of my projects, and build up enough industry contacts who trust and believe in what I’m doing, then I would certainly look to help, or “sign”, other similar minded artists.

But I certainly won’t have any credibility as a label, and wouldn’t be much help to anyone, until I can first figure out how to succeed on my own projects. We’ll see what the future holds.

Any plans to tour the UK soon?

I would absolutely love to tour the UK. I intend to look into whether it’s financially feasible after I finish up a few visual art projects I’m committed to. The last few months I’ve been entirely focused on making a 15 foot long whale, three large baby robins and 400 clay bees for a solo exhibition I have in June- but I will be switching my focus to booking some performances after all of the art is installed.

In recent years there has been an increase on surprise albums from acts – >even going as far as no early singles in the recent case of Arctic Monkeys – >what are your thoughts on them?

I honestly don’t know a huge amount about them but I think I remember reading that their first material kind of caught on through demo file sharing… like everything just unfolded in a really cool “perfect storm of success” kind of way for them. That had to have been so validating and empowering.

I think they’d be like a shining example of organic success and it really shows the power of pro-active fan support and how the internet can facilitate major success for an indie band in todays’ market. 

Review and Photos: BETH HART @ HEXAGON THEATRE…

Show date: 30th April 2018

Entering in a very unorthodox manner, Beth walked through the almost capacity crowd and welcomed fans, shook hands, gave hugs and opened her first number at the same time. Finally making it to the stage leaving the fans in a very happy mood.

There is no doubt that this lady is an exceptional talent. She can clearly write great songs. She can very clearly sing with a range only to be envied. She is a versatile musician too playing electric and acoustic guitars as well as the piano.

For an artist that has had many challenges through life she has turned out well. Openly discussing her abusive relationships, mental health issues, and her own concern that she may be a serial killer it is obvious where the emotion in her writing stems from. She sings about getting out of relationships, loving someone deeper and even about an ugly house!

Beth obviously appreciates where she has come from and is thankful of where she is. Giving homage to her Mom (who was in the audience) for being so supportive and explaining that she was a difficult child. More subject matter for a song.

The music speaks for itself and the audience were pleased throughout. Personally, I felt there were too many slow tempo songs at the piano. Beth has the ability to raise the energy in anyone and this was the case in her rocky blues numbers especially as she came out to her encore. The final song being another slow tempo number left me deflated though. Not a great way to end a set.

Review and photos: KRIS BARRAS @ HEXAGON THEAT…

Supporting one of L.A.’s great blues artists, Beth Hart, Kris Barras took to the stage to perform his acoustic set to an almost capacity crowd at the Hexagon Theatre in Reading.

Initially influenced by his Father, Barras takes inspiration from the likes of Hendrix. He’s had a ride through his short life with being bankrupt, being a professional Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) cage fighter (retired), to a very respected Blues musician.

The Kris Barras band normally give the satisfaction of great blues with substance and style and all the grit you can take. They are a big sound blues rock band. So when they took the stage with acoustics, I didn’t know quite what to expect.

My concerns were quickly quashed with what I can only say was some of the best acoustic blues I have seen live.

The band’s ability to deliver their style, power, and maintain technical content was achieved with a four star rating. This was also evident by the crowd’s reaction to each and every song on the set list.

The brand new album ‘The Divine and Dirty’ featured throughout the set and if you haven’t heard the album I would certainly recommend you afford a listen. Songs featured from the album were ‘Hail Mary’, ‘Propane’, and ‘Watching Over Me’.

I have to say, the acoustic set was great. However, the full band experience rocks. So if you’re impressed by the acoustics of Kris Barras, you will be blown away by the full experience. This places Barras on another plain by displaying his diverse music ability.