Sunday, April 28, 2013


I'm a little bit irked by the split of JLS, because I sort of liked them. compared with the likes of One Direction they were simply 4 nice talented lads and they seemed like genuinely nice people. At first I kind  of hated them but they kind of grew on me later when they were able to get better songwriters. This links into Birmingham because at the 2009 light switch on I was able to see them live. On paper this should have been a brilliant night. A line up of JLS,Calvin Harris, Pixie Lott,Chipmunk, Tinchy Stryder and a few others plus a few fareground rides was enough to bring well prety much the numbers you'd expect to the the think tank. What could possibly go wrong?
For now though lets focus on what I did get to see. JLS put out a good 30 minute set, including all the recent hits and a cover of Rihanna's umbrella, I didn't see much of them considering where I was but I did get to see some impressive back-flips.
Afterwards though we got half an hour of people announcing that if we wanted to see Calvin Harris we'd have to all push back. We had no idea what was going on but after a while of waiting it all just stopped. no one knew what had happened or were the bands were but something had bought the show to a standstill. . As youtube showed us later what had happened was that about a mile behind us a few hundred people had been pushed into a tiny space, people broke out of  the gates an ran out bringing the whole show to standstill.
I was angry about this at the time as there had been next to no reporting in the news, and that the event had been so badly planned, people had felt caged, and that many acts in such a small place was obviously going to attracted far more attendees than they had planned for.
The problem is though that while I don't know what's been done for the lights since, I think we need another go at this, in a bigger venue, with more quality rather than quantity based shows we could put on something really special. That night in 2009 could have been a brilliant night but ultimately it was just a badly organised fiasco.

Anyway that was the only time I saw JLS, I wont miss them but they were okay, they were the boyband that it was borderline okay for hetrosexual males to like 

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Jaws, Milkshake EP- Review

JAWS - BREEZEJAWS new EP 'Milkshake' is a collection of everything they've done so far with a few added new songs. The vibe is mellow yet with a kick to it, its best saved for very hot summer days with cool windy breezes

So the opening track 'BreeZe has a very fitting title, I just put it on and the sun came out, its perfect summer material. The lyrics are all about love and summer and what starts off as a quite melodic piece quickly changes into a wall of sound, before spinning off into another direction. Its hazy and chilled out yet packed full of meoldies and pounding drums, and while the production adds a heavy layer to it all, it doesn't drown anything out. Connors singing is now  a bit easier to make out but low in the mix and subtle as usual. Frankly if there is any song that marks JAWS out to be a big deal its this. It even comes with a bit of cowbell.
'Donut' is more grungey, and dirty and on this one the vibe is more surf rock, rather than loads of melodies this ones more stripped back, with simpler riffs and repeated melodies. Think Nirvana on Happy Pills, unfortunately I can't make out a word that's being sung as its so low in the mix but that doesn't matter so much.
'Toucan Surf' was an early hit, (it may have been the first single)  and when I saw them live this track got a enthusiastic reaction from the bands loyal fans, everyone in the front 3 rows was po-going along, which is odd for such a mellow song. This track mixes echoing guitar lines with synth melodies and a bouncy rhythm, I can see why the crowd loved it.
New Single Friend like you follows on and its another newbie, so like BreeZe it shows JAWS settling into their melodic hazy, sunny sound. if you didn't think that JAWS could get any-more chillled out and relaxed then this one will prove you wrong, its a slow burner that starts of slow but half way through changes gear when the band decide to kick out the jams, its a trick that the band use a lot, no song ends on an anti-cilmax.
'Stay in' is more of the same, a chilled out track that mixes melodies with frantic drumming, Connors lyrics ring out on this track with repeated lines such as 'Stay in Stay out I don't want to know where you gonna go' before yet another grungey wall of sound, I'm running out of metaphors so lets just say it rocks, you wont know whether to mosh or relax.
'Surround You' finishes of this little career best of, and its still my favourite, in its own way its completely psychedelic, I adore the intro and the keyboard riff that pins down the song. It fits in brilliantly with the sparse guitar melodies. Lyrically its not that amazing if taken out of context but its simplicity is what makes it work. lines like ”Let the wind blow through your hair/Send me crazy with your stare” make the song seem even more euphoric when surrounded by such beautiful melodic sounds. It proves that JAWS are essentially a pop band who can write memorable catchy songs. The whole EP is full of contradictions, Its mellow yet grungey, its full of simple hooks and melodies yet it sounds complex when its all put together

I'm looking forward to an album after hearing this, if this is what the two first singles + their B-sides and two new tracks sound like when put together, then an album of freshly put together new songs could be amazing. some good evidence of this is that the 2 new tracks are some of the best on here.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Female Smell

"FEMALE SMELL - A who’s who of nobodies, dead beats, and duddards, stricken with addiction and bad attitude, but the “you can’t help but love em” spit on a cloth Nan and wipe his face, scuzz buckets of FEMALE SMELL."

Listening to this bands Demo tape has given me a headache. That's not necessarily a bad thing, Crystal Castles nearly gave me a migraine the first time I heard 'Courtship dating'. the thing is though that while I grew to slowly love Crystal Castles, whether I could truly love female smell remains to be seen. you see thing thing is the three tracks on their 'No Mards' demo are so loud, noisy, chaotic and completely unhinged that its nearly impossible to write this blog and listen to them at the same time.

The first track 'Can't Help it Anymore' is a sort of garage rock/punk/screamo/metal mash up that literally sounds like 3 songs playing at the same time. whether you like it or not it will grab your attention and make your ears hurt. It's the sound of a band who clearly couldn't give a fuck, and might be taking the piss slightly. frankly I'm amazed they managed to get a clean recording of it all. They can play though in its own way its quite intricate and if they even use time signatures they must be all over the place.

'Look at me now' is pretty much more of the same, except it has a more metal feel and you might make out a few of the lyrics. and 'Screw' which is track 3 starts off with a proper intro, and a repeated guitar rhythm  and then more of the same. it shows that they can play at less than 100 mph though, as its mostly a slow builder before the choruses (if you think they can be called that).

Remember that I do not write this blog to slander, I'm not saying that they're bad, just that they're not for the faint hearted, you should listen to it purely to see what you think, whether you like it or not they will inspire a reaction.

Pics and quote from

You'll find a download of their EP on their bandcamp page. You can chose whether you want to pay for it or not.

Monday, April 22, 2013

The other day I nearly got to see Dog Is Dead.

I love blogging, it gives me a great sense of satisfaction and an enjoyable creative outlet. I enjoy being able to promote my city and in particular writing about the bands that don't always get the attention they deserve in the trendy rags. However there are times when it annoys me, such as when earlier today I accidentally deleted my blog on Dog Is Dead, So I'm going to try and rewrite it, hoping its as good as when it first got published.

It all started a few hours before I was able to leave for work, (I'm currently attending trial shifts at a Starbucks in the city centre) I got a text from a friend of mine asking whether I like Dog is Dead, it was an odd question so responded by saying that I thought they were okay. he responded by telling me that they were doing a secret gig in the bullring that he had a ticket for but couldn't make. I found this really exciting, a proper established indie band playing a secret gig in the bullring! I got my break at half 5 for half an hour because that's when he said it started. It was exactly where I expected it to be, between the bullring and the church, same place I saw Cage The Elephant play a free gig in 2009.

It was a small cordoned off section by a little van. The whole thing was an obvious promotion of a new app by the streaming service Deezer, I saw people queueing up to get in and I nearly did my self, people were being given free tote bags and from what I heard the staff saying I think they may have had T-shirts in them as well. People were being given cordless headphones, at first I thought maybe it was a live stream of a Dog is Dead gig elsewhere but I saw the band themselves hanging around. from talking to some girls in the queue what I gatherd  was that its a live stream of a gig  happening in front of you, so you watch the band tyet you hear them through headphones. Its a great way to promote an app but its not what I want from my live experience, I want the sweat, the banter, the interaction, the earache, the social aspect. Although when I told my work colleague about this after he thought it was a great idea.

unfortunately I didn't get to see it in the end, I didn't feel to comfortable about lying about my name to get past the guest list (It was not a ticket after all) and my shift started at 6:00 when the gig actually started. I was a bit disappointed about missing it,but then again I was also a bit disappointed that the raucous impromptu live gig I was expecting was actually a headphone streaming session. I don't mind though, I don't even like Dog is Dead that much anyway.

I thought the guy stroking his hair was in the band, now i'm not so sure