Chris T-T: Best Of

We had this a couple of weeks before playing it. A bloke we’ve never heard of issuing a best-of package as he jacks it in after 20 years of limited success? What’s going to be good about that? A lot, it transpires. The man’s a genius at what he does, with an unlimited supply of […]

The Undercover: Hippy Truth and Fiction

The Undercover Hippy — his mum calls him Billy — is one mixed up dude: he sounds like he should have long hair but doesn’t; on record he sounds a bit of a crusty but he’s a smart young man (his mum must be proud); he raps like Eminem but to reggae. He’s certainly different. […]

The Jesus And Mary Chain: Damage and Joy

We were never ones to worship bands; we never raved about The Jesus and Mary Chain — they’re just a band, all said and done — so this new album, the first new one in 19 years, seems pretty good. Maybe diehard fans will feel differently. The main problem for the band’s Reid brothers is […]

Creeper: Eternity, In Your Arms

For some reason, were we expecting swampy goth rock from this but it’s mostly punk, in some parts the rapid snare/kick drum punk of bands like NOFX (though there is no band like NOFX, of course), as well as that shouted call/more melodic response thing that punks do. Elsewhere it’s somewhere between AFI/Alkaline Trio/Blink 182, […]

Bleeker: Erase You

Bleeker are a Canadian trio and this album is as polite and well-behaved as the national clichés have it. Opener Highway is somewhat of an imposter and kicks things off in misleading fashion. It’s a sleazy glam stomper, with scuzzy if polished riffs and a throbbing bass. It was, the internet reports, played at the […]

Vant: Dumb Blood

We like this because they sound like a band at all times; some of the songs may not be the best but they always work because the band works as a unit. Opener The Answer is a great first track, with feedback, swirling guitar and throbbing bass held together by a tight drum pattern; if […]

Frank Carter and The Rattlesnakes: Modern Ruin

A friend in music radio once told us that some pretty decent bands fail because their members are so unpleasant — be mean to venues, music journalists and sound engineers and your career will be short lived. By the same token, Frank Carter must be the nicest man in music. Despite a decade-long career that’s […]

Beans on Toast: A Spanner in the Works

Beans On Toast is the stage name of folk singer Jay McAllister from Essex. He’s a mate of Frank Turner, and thus gets to play Wembley supporting Frank and then considerably smaller venues on his own account. (He just played Manchester Gorilla). A Spanner in the Works opens with an angry rant about 2016. If […]

The Membranes: Inner Space/Outer Space

We were going to say we’d never heard The Membranes but looking on Wikipedia we have — they are a post-punk band formed in Blackpool in 1977, and their first release was the Flexible Membrane flexi-disc in 1980, which we bought and still have somewhere. The band included John Robb, who we always think of […]

Letlive: If I’m The Devil…

We’ve not come across this band before. From what we can tell from other reviews, their previous albums have mixed raucous punk with soul; singer Jason Aalon Butler is revered by fans as a genius, and this new album is either brilliant or terrible. One website had two reviews, one good one bad. We can […]