REVIEW | Venkman: Kakorrhaphiophobia

Trying say that title three times fast.

Hailing from the city of Lichfield, Venkman describe themselves as an off-kilter funk band. We didn’t necessarily know what that meant at first, but we were curious enough to get a taste for ourselves courtesy of their debut EP – Kakorrhaphiophobia. It proved to be a decision well made.

They kick off with Tapout, a swift, catchy as hell toe-tapper further amplified by crisp vocals and a really cool accompanying sax, before firing straight into The Friar, notable for it’s addictive hook and excellent guitar chords.

Deep Sea Diver moves forth at a more laid-back pace but continues to deliver splendid guitar and rhythm work, soon leading into the transcendent Andrew, You’re Horizontal to wrap up the record.

With just one listen, we have instantly fallen in love with these guys, for this is a simply intoxicating, groovy EP that will certainly go down as one of 2015’s strongest debuts. It’s early days yet, but it’s already clear that Venkman are set to go far.

 

REVIEW | Lucy Mair: Naive

Fresh on the British music scene, we have up and coming Oxford singer-songwriter Lucy Mair, who is seeking to make a name for herself with her debut EP – Naive.

I Will Wait grabs the attention of the listener quickly with a warm folk melody, in addition to a showcase of stunning harmonies, whilst the lead single The Fool brings us a catchy rhythm. The Sixties certainly stands out as the highlight, being an astounding anthem with amazing writing and enchanting piano work.

Lucy then follows up with the great It’ll Take More Than You which is accompanied by a simple yet effective lone riff, before finishing on Left Behind; featuring nothing more than a basic drum beat, she takes full control with her captivating vocals one last time.

Being a wonderful collection of charming, acoustic pop tracks, this young artist’s first effort is a strong one, and we’re sure it’s only a matter of time before her full potential is realised.

 

REVIEW | GoodCopGreatCop: Write On Me

GoodCopGreatCop have developed into one of the finest rock acts to emerge from Perth; spawning a fan following courtesy of an EP, several singles, plenty of touring and a decent amount of airplay in a variety of radio stations.

Their latest venture comes in the form of a new track entitled Write On Me, an incredibly spirited tune with a number of positive elements that include a ridiculously addictive chorus, memorable lyrics passionately sung to us via heartfelt vocals, a catchy hard-hitting rhythm and poignant riffs.

A really dazzling single, to say the least, that never declines in quality with each listen. As they continue to only get better, it’s clear the sky is the limit for this band and we are already anxiously awaiting their next record.

 

REVIEW | The Deadline Shakes: Zealots

For weeks on end, we’ve been hearing countless good things about Glaswegian pop rock band The Deadline Shakes and their upcoming debut album, Zealots. So naturally, once a copy ended up in our possession, we were keen to experience it for ourselves.

A mild intro lends way to a glorious, bombastic opener in the form of Bright Spot In A Bad Year; quickly leading into Shelters which features excellent guitar work as well as an addictive swaying rhythm.

Slipping From Your Heart is a warm folk number where the acoustics truly shine, whilst a catchy drum beat is the stand out characteristic of You Bring The Class.

In addition to neat mandolin riffs, an engrossing atmosphere is notable in the passionate Frozen Out, and Sweeten The Deal is a real fast-paced toe-tapper.

Starting slow and steady, the riveting Phonecalls In The Bath picks up for an exciting latter half with enjoyable lyrics; a theme that continues into undoubtedly the highlight of the album – A Little Waiting While – which brings us a memorable chorus that lingers in the head even long after at it’s done.

An intoxicating melody embodies Don’t You Be Too Cool, before the band at last bring the record to a close with the thrilling Boy.

The Deadline Shakes have provided something simply amazing with Zealots, with it being one of those awfully rare compilations where each and every single one of the robust tracks is bursting with creativity and bringing their own individual qualities to the table.

Accomplishing that, this band have proved themselves to be a force to be reckoned with. Nowhere else but onward and upwards for these chaps.

REVIEW | Cherri Fosphate: We Didn’t Come Here To Say Goodbye

At the launch night of St Lukes back in September, we were introduced to Glasgow rock outfit Cherri Fosphate, who made quite a good first impression. In our review of the show, we considering purchasing their debut album once it was released.

Now that time has come, We Didn’t Come Here To Say Goodbye is out, we’ve listened to it and we are ready to share our opinions.

The record brings us a first-rate assortment of songs with lively exuberant melodies and engaging lyrical work, with the highlights including the memorable Neighbour, the fast-paced Pretend and Auf Wiedersehen.

Slick riffs are prominent in tunes such as WoolLosing Teeth and the upbeat Kerry Rodgers, whilst the likes of the groovy Sea Foam Green, the bass-heavy Lady Aniseed and Monster present stand out rhythm sections; the latter in particular featuring a simple yet catchy hook.

Ending on the temperate Didn’t See You, Cherri Fosphate’s inaugural full-length album is a splendid listening affair that any indie music fan is sure to get a kick out of. Just one example of the quality talent brought to us courtesy of the acclaimed Bloc Music label.

 

REVIEW | Dream State: Consequences

Today we turn our attention to the Welsh music scene, and more specifically a band by the name of Dream State. We’ve heard good things about the post-hardcore quintet now and again, but it wasn’t until recently that we took the plunge and finally checked them out via their debut EP, Consequences, and man were we blown away by the results.

It was the case from the very get-go, as Burden impressed with a catchy, potent rhythm and some mighty assertive harmonies; qualities that continue into Burn Them Down where we bear witness to emphatic choruses.

The tempo drops a touch for Try Again, a tune in which the striking lyrics are brought to the forefront, before kicking back up for the fittingly titled Relentless that is highlighted by a galloping, frenzied melody.

But boy oh boy, they sure save the best for last: the lead single Rebuild, Recreate. Easing in with gentle acoustic chords, they swiftly fire into a blistering number fueled by a ferocious energy that only amplifies whilst the pace accelerates and builds towards an explosive finale.

Immense is the best way to describe this EP. Dream State’s debut record is hands down one of the best to come out of Wales all year; forceful, thrilling and only sounding better with each countless listen.

It took very little effort for us to get hooked, and we’re already holding out for them to head on up and play Glasgow as soon as possible. Meanwhile, if any record companies are looking for a young, red-hot metal act with unlimited potential to sign up, then look no further.

 

REVIEW | Fallen Arches: Footprints

For months we’ve been hearing rumblings about Fallen Arches, the solo project of Colin Bell, and now it’s time for us to see what he has to offer with his debut EP – Footprints.

Twist & Turn is an engaging opening number with a striking chorus; likewise with the title track, this time backed up by endearing pianos and glockenspiels.

The catchy Heartbeat is fittingly enough encompassed by a pounding rhythm, whilst Private Show entertains with a calm and pleasant melody, before the upbeat Where Are The Drums caps off the record on a high note.

Colin’s first effort is a very well done one. A smashing EP that is sure to satisfy the ears of anybody in need of some good old-fashioned folk pop.