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Archive for June, 2005

LEBATOL – Circo Russo (Function Records)

Posted: June 30th, 2005, by Fraser Campbell

Strongly reminiscent of The Screaming Trees, this four track EP lacks real punch, mainly down to muddy production.

A shame really, as Lebatol have come up with some interesting, well crafted songs and demonstrate that they are not afraid to mix a pretty straight up rock sound with some unusual and refreshing percussive touches.

Singer Shane Billingham tends to set the musical tone with a very distinctive voice, which I’m sure will be something of an acquired taste to most. Gravely and laconic, he sounds a little like Mark Arm meets Tom Waits.

This band aren’t there yet, but have shown enough potential on this E.P to suggest they may well be in the future.

A clever move in my book to steal the start of Cool Thing by Sonic Youth for their last track, the highly enjoyable Spectator NY, a SY/Heads-esque blast, which closes out the offering in real style.

THE MITFORD GIRLS – The Mitford Girls (Demo)

Posted: June 30th, 2005, by Fraser Campbell

This is a fun collection of three really good songs (Binary Boy, Pills to Paris and my favorite, Angry Raisins) by the Glasgow based band, who appear to have developed a distinctive sound without pulling away totally from Glastronica (my swiftly made up name for the many Glasgow bands who blend electronics with other instruments and, dare I say it, tend to sound vaguely the same in doing so).

I won’t lie, this kind of stuff is generally not my cup of tea. But the songs on this self-produced 3 tracker are all well conceived and executed with amusing, intelligent lyrics.

If you like your Glastronica (it’ll catch on, I’m telling you) tongue in cheek and frankly a cut above the norm, check them out.

You can find out where they’re playing next and what their plans are here.


Posted: June 28th, 2005, by Tom Leins

The Black Tulips would have us believe that they are the latest in a long-line of intelligent English art-pop bands that includes The Beatles, The Kinks, Roxy Music, The Smiths and Suede. However, if you’re expecting a bland, limp-wristed fop-pop jangle then you’ve got another think coming. In actual fact, The Tulips play rabid dosshouse disco that tramples the not-so-thin line between unhinged and erm, hinged. The vocals (courtesy of Alexandra- “Eloquent and vulgar, wild and shy; often to be found taking tea.”) are totally diseased and sound like nothing i’ve ever heard. ‘Just Keep Coming’ is a feral garage/blues stomp, ‘I Don’t Want You’ is propulsive disco-punk that sounds a bit like Franz Ferdinand after a sex-change operation gone-wrong and ‘Sad Sally’ is primal-sounding Bowie fuzz-rock. Scary, but definitely in a good way.


Nike apologises

Posted: June 28th, 2005, by Dave Stockwell

(If you can’t read this, go here)
Just as well really.

BACON & EGG – …are fanduvo (Wäntage USA/Motron Records)

Posted: June 27th, 2005, by Simon Minter

I often have my doubts about ‘side projects’, but when they sound like this CD – a side project from two members of Volumen, combining the best in 1980s drum machine technology, hair metal widdling and lame white boy rapping – who am I to complain? This is further evidence that Missoula, Montana is stuck in some kind of time warp where it’s forever the mid-80s. Breakdance-style simplistic drum patterns are augmented by the wailingest of wailing guitars, ably recorded by Tim ‘Fucking Champs’ Green. The riffs come hard and fast. Heads down, devil horn fingers in the air, and ROCK. The toasting on the M.I.C. sounds like a teenager showing off to capture the attention of a group of cheerleaders. The perfect combination of point and pointless.

Bacon & Egg
W?ntage USA
Motron Records


Posted: June 26th, 2005, by Marceline Smith

By the sounds of this someone has finally invented robots that can play guitars! What’s more these are some fucked up robots that have installed both Rock version 2.0 and Pop version 7.5.5 from pirated software creating all manner of internal errors. They race through XXX Robot out of control on fizzy idiocy, their circuits electrified and vocoders rendering their words of robot rebellion incomprehensible to humans. On this evidence I welcome the day we are taken over by robots. All hail our new robot overlords.

Risc Records

THE DECIDER! – Unshakeable (Topplers)

Posted: June 26th, 2005, by Marceline Smith

This has got some of the most scarifying artwork I’ve seen in a long time. Think Pop Will Eat Itself gone Acid House. Because of this I was expecting some kind of kerrazy electro pop but instead we get join the dots indie over the three tracks. The cheapo drum machine beats, Hooky bass and mournful vocals of Unshakeable come across as a bedroom Joy Division interspersed with Mark E Smith shouty chorus and somehow carries it off as a ramshackle mess of fun. Recommended has that loping Loaded bassline, laconic Bobby Gillespie vocals and stupid organ and sounds like a bad Primal Scream outtake while Recycle It takes all the bad things about the Happy Mondays and matches them up with some amusingly stupid sound effects. Ironically, for a band named the Decider, they seem to be unsure about what they’re actually doing unless they’re trying to record an entire Indie Top 20 album by themselves. Which would be a brilliant idea, incidentally.



Posted: June 24th, 2005, by Chris Summerlin


I don’t know what to think about this or whether I even care. Bear in mind Black Flag are on a Wannadoo ad, Nike already used Search & Destroy by the Stooges, Lyle Preslar from MT is an A&R guy and Brian Baker is about the best example of a career punker known and it’s all splitting hairs really.
I guess all it says is that the MT fan at Nike’s marketing office kind of missed the point.

Haha. Eat shit fuckers.

Posted: June 24th, 2005, by Chris Summerlin

God’s way of damning charging people a hundred and whatever quid for a peace and love experience. Rain on!

DOG MEN POETS: Birth Of The Cool

Posted: June 23rd, 2005, by Tom Leins

Texan/Scottish pop troupe Dog Men Poets describe themselves as ‘The A-Team kidnapping George Clinton on their way to Mexico’. I think they sound more like The Fugees kidnapping The Red Hot Chilli Peppers on their way to Walmart!

The band numbers a Scottish singer (his name’s Matt Barker in case anyone out there knows him), a renowned Slam Poet, a beat-boxing percussive machine and “one of the few guitarists to have played with both Stevie-Ray Vaughan and Snoop Dogg” (presumably not at the same time). [Fact fans: If anyone out there can think of one of the other guitarists to have played with the aforementioned duo, send your answers on a post-card to the usual address, or scratch them into your arm with a blunt pencil – whichever, really…

Oh, yeah- they’ve also got a drummer who used to play in an international reggae band called Buffalo Solder. If that isn’t a mis-print, then Buffalo Solder is my favourite band name since Pubic Enemy(!).
But i digress. This is a slick, multi-cultural grab-bag of radio-friendly, child-friendly, Walmart-friendly funk-hop. Not really my cup of funk-hop, but that shouldn’t affect their depressingly-inevitable progress. They’ll doubtless be huge.

PS. 102.5 FM, Mexico City thinks that “This disc’s loaded with hot adrenalin and funk. Dig it.” Who am i to argue?