Categories
EP Reviews

EP Review: GrassRoof – GUYAKA

GrassRoof are Cambridge based music students, mixing their own magic formula of psychedelic-indie-pop-rock into one huge epic sound. These Cambridge Band Competition finalists have shown time and time again that they are just as electrifying on stage as they are in the studio.

Their latest release Guyaka is no exception, giving us four new tracks and a fantastic live version of Microdosing Matt With Acid. This is the second EP release we’ve seen from GrassRoof in recent years, their last being Tadpole which dropped just last year. Despite the relatively soon release they have still managed to construct an equally unique and original sound as their first EP, and continue to play packed out shows around Cambridge and beyond.

Guyaka eases into the GrassRoof experience with Microdosing Matt With Acid. This first track is all about atmosphere and isn’t afraid to take its time setting the tone. With deep booming drums and everything soaked in reverb, I can’t help think of a shirtless Dave Gilmore ripping a melancholy solo in a Roman amphitheatre like in Echoes with Pink Floyd. What makes this track for me is their ability to subtly control the dynamics; the electrifying vocals and heavy drum tone lead the track to psychedelic indie ecstasy, only to seamlessly return to the appropriately penned lyrical hook of the first section of the song, “I’m excited”. Needless to say me, and my neighbours, have been listening to this track on repeat.

The second track Tadpole takes less time to introduce itself. A few bars of choppy guitar and a few bars of hi-hat and then you’re thrown in the deep end. This track is a free for all blend of 80s disco synth, funky fresh bass and a vast, effortless guitar section all held together by a rock-solid drummer. This track to me, is quintessential GrassRoof, taking us to the psychedelic stoner disco and throwing the doors wide open.

Spiral Anna takes us on a slightly different journey. It kicks off with a dreamy shoegaze-esque guitar riff, slowly acquainting us with the feel of the track. The drums accompany with some light cymbal ornamentation and then the bass comes into accent the first two notes of the bar giving some depth and a punchy rhythm to the floaty overlapping melodies. What stood out to me in the first section of this track is the unique style in the tone of vocalist James Turnbull; the lyrics and pitch are so reminiscent of 80s prog that Geddy Lee might have well of written the parts himself. It then kicks off into a heaving rocking jam, interluded with an uber tight acid rock solo from drummer Ben Parker, and screeching psychedelic guitar distortion lathered all over it. Tasty. 

The last track on this ep is BLine. A solid, slow polyrhythm from parker sets the pace, being joined shortly after with a funky 80s arpeggio synth from keys section Rayne brown. This band have a remarkable ability to flow from one epic section to another in a perfect hivemind unison, rising and falling between floaty funky acid riffs. This track captures the essence of so many legends in music history, and perhaps wouldn’t have been out of place on my dad’s record player 20 years before now, but the magic GrassRoof formula stands on the shoulders of giants to bring a cutting edge new sound to the Cambridge scene.

This is not an EP you can afford to miss.

Written by James D’Alessandro

Categories
EP Reviews

EP Review: The Catch – How It Seems

One of the best indie bands in the area, The Catch are currently making a name for themselves with their ferocious live performances and awesome track releases. With their new EP How It Seems, they certainly don’t disappoint.

The EP follows on from the release of their two recent singles Tie Dye and Sort It Out which have both shaped the sound of their new work. The trio’s sound has really grown over the past year with more emphasis placed on heavy guitar riffs which are prominent in the opening single Hindsight which also features their trademark catchy chorus.

Drop The Act follows directly on from Hindsight, and it’s more of the same. An awesome indie rock track that instantly pulls you in with incredibly tight instrumentals to open the track and arguably some of the band’s best lyrics to date. The drop towards the end of the track is unexpected but it could be a real crowd pleaser at the live shows.

The title track How It Seems is a track which shows The Catch in a different light with a more gentle approach to their instrumentals and an emotional vocal performance. How It Seems is needed to differentiate from the powerful rock from before, though the second half of the track is the part of the song.

Recently released as a teaser single, Know You Won’t Try finishes the EP off with a bang. Their Bring Me The Horizon and Biffy Clyro influences really shine through on this track with even more intensely sharp guitar riffs and instrumentals.

These four tracks from the trio signals a change in their musical direction. More riffs, a heavier sound and honest lyrics are just three of the reasons why The Catch are one of the best local bands around. This EP is an essential listen.

We take submissions from bands in the East Anglia region, whether it be just one track or a full-length album. Send your music over to themusicblog42@gmail.com and we’ll consider it for a feature or full review.

Categories
EP Reviews

Influx of Insanity: EP review

Influx of Insanity have become recent stalwarts of the local music scene, infamous for their prog rock sound, and the release of their self-titled EP proves why they’ll be around for a very long time.

Aged only fourteen years old, the duo have self-produced this collection of five brand new tracks alongside an acoustic version of one of their most revered songs. The EP is a studio version of tracks that were part of their BurySOUND and Cambridge Band Competition-winning sets.

Envious Souls is the EP opener, a track which builds up into a ferocious chorus which not only sounds awesome on record, but their live performances are also a pleasure to listen to. This has been a track that has always stood out live, and hearing the ‘studio’ version of it has made us love it even more.

Segued in between the heavier tracks on the EP are the psychedelic-inspired instrumentals of Unknown Entity and Kalinthapa. These tracks are more gentler and tranquil than anything the dynamic duo have released before, and shows a more versatile edge to their writing and instrumentals.

Violet and Season of Mist are two tracks that will stick long in the memory and are arguably two of the best rock songs you’ll hear all year. Violet‘s atmospheric guitar riffs from Dom Howard and Oliver Brown’s unique vocals builds up into an astonishing finale which will blow you away. Season of Mist shows off the band’s harder sound with more brutal riffs and intense vocals.

Go and listen now because this is an EP you HAVE to listen to.

INFLUX OF INSANITY launch their EP TOMORROW NIGHT (2nd Nov) at RAMPTON VILLAGE HALL. Support comes from LIMITED TIME and THE GOODS. 7:30pm start.

Categories
EP Reviews

EP Review: False Hearts – Dirty Little Soul

Dirty Little Soul, the brand new EP Cambridgeshire rock band False Hearts, showcases their modern rock sensibilities and their harrowing melodic instrumentals.

With the EP only being the standard four tracks long, the female-fronted band have packed every punch into each track that are bursting to the seams with powerful riffs, tearing vocals and gritty instrumentals. Any fan of rock music will instantly love False Hearts.

Recently the band have played with many upcoming bands including Cambridge counterparts Hollowstar who themselves have had a phenomenal past few years, with the two bands flying the flag for the currently thriving Cambridge rock scene.

Not only do the tracks have such powerful, ear-catching instrumentals, they also have a deep meaning to them with the EP centered around “the murky waters of a troubled psych”, which is brought to the forefront of tracks like Break and Addicted To Pain.

The real highlight of the EP is Cynical Love, the band’s most recognisable track. The track’s juxtaposing chorus is not only awesome, but insanely catchy. A brilliant track to close a provokingly satisfying EP.

False Hearts are on the rise, and with gigs coming up around the region, the band are only going to get better from here on in. One of the best rock EP’s of 2018.

Listen to False Hearts on Soundcloud below!

Categories
Features

TMB42 Anniversary Gig Preview

Tomorrow night (18/08) sees The Music Blog 42 (US!) celebrate a year of blogging in the region with a night of celebration and rock featuring four of the best bands from East Anglia.

The night consists of sets from Latitude-conquering psych-rockers Sun Scream, teenage wonderkids Influx of Insanity, intensely powerful rock duo KULK and Cambridgeshire punk rockers God Hates Astronauts!

Headliners Sun Scream need no introduction when it comes to the local music scene having played Latitude Festival only this year off the back of several gigs around the region and  Brighton. The end of the year sees the band release their new EP Big Red Lazy Sun, and play a support slot for The Brian Jonestown Massacre. Saturday sees them play a headline slot in their hometown which promises to be a truly special set.

Although they’re relatively new to the scene, Influx of Insanity have fast become one of the most popular bands in the area. In March, the duo won the BurySOUND Competition surprising all of the judges along the way. Later on in the year they also won the Cambridge Band Competition whilst up against strong opposition. A new EP is on the way, so expect to hear some new material on Saturday night.

KULK are another band who have seen a sharp rise in their popularity, with their intense, confident live performances winning over audiences in Norwich, Cambridge and Ipswich to name a few. Early 2018 saw them release two singles Fix Me and Toxic, two rock tracks laden with raw power and talent which has seen them booked for shows by Washing Machine and Local Distortion. For a duo, their sound is HUGE.

With hugely successful headline shows in Cambridge under their belt, God Hates Astronauts make their Bury St Edmunds debut on Saturday night. The trio released one of our favourite EPs this year in Triffids, and since then they’ve regularly played Local Distortion nights and have had extensive local radio play. Let’s just say that this won’t be their last gig in Bury St Edmunds.

Entry on the door tomorrow night is £5, cash only! On the door will also be merchandise from local designer Resolute Supply, available with cash only.

SET TIMES

DOORS 7:00
GOD HATES ASTRONAUTS 7:15-7:45
KULK 8:00-8:30
INFLUX OF INSANITY 8:45-9:25
SUN SCREAM 9:45-10:30

Categories
Track Reviews

Track Review: The Baskervilles – Blood In My Mouth

If you’re a fan of full-blooded indie rock, then you’ll absolutely love Blood In My Mouth from Suffolk’s The Baskervilles.

Hailing from Ipswich, the five-piece rockers have been working in the studio for the past two years with award-winning producer Tom Donovan resulting in the absolutely massive 2017 track Kalashnikov and the bloody brilliant Blood In My Mouth released only on Friday (27th April).

Blood In My Mouth definitely has more of a commercial sound than their previous releases however this doesn’t take away from the raw energy that makes this track one of the most exciting releases of 2018.

The Baskervilles themselves said that the track is for “anyone who has lost the one they love and is forced to relive the mistakes they’ve made”.  The emotions of the track are driven by the swaggering vocals from frontman James Betts, which heavily compliments the juggernaut of a guitar riff which comes to the fore in the chorus.

The band have confirmed that they’ll be touring the UK in June, not before a co-headline appearance on the Rock Against Racism stage at the Bury Fringe Festival All-Dayer on Saturday 5th May. Keep an eye out for tour dates when they’re announced!

Blood In My Mouth is available on all platforms.

For all links to their social media, go to http://www.thebaskervillesofficial.com

Categories
Gig Reviews

A Horse Called War @ The Hunter Club, BSE

The annual rock-fest at The Hunter Club to celebrate the Bury Fringe Festival culminated with a headline set from metal heroes A Horse Called War.

Fresh new hardcore trio All We Know opened the night entertaining the growing crowd with new tracks and some of ‘old’ like Hear Me Out and favourite Deprivation. The band are starting to write their debut EP in the coming months and it’s bound to make waves in the local scene, so keep an eye and ear out for it.

Clown Smash Everything played their first ever show at The Hunter Club next, and it certainly won’t be the last time, they were ace. The vocals were absolutely insane on every track in their thirty minute slot, wowing with some rad riffs on tracks like Fight The Fire (Or Fuck Off) and Leave The Forces.

Essex heroes Rad Pitt’s performance was definitely a memorable one. With their lead vocalist recovering from surgery, their guitarist stepped in but it was still stunningly awesome. The band energetically played favourites from their 2017 album Pink like the bloody brilliant track What Is The Point Of Piers Morgan?. These lads are triumphant live, go check them out whenever you can!

Favourites on the local scene, stoner-doom foursome Bracken unleashed furious vocals and intense instrumentals on to a packed room, tearing through tracks from their self-titled EP. And for £5 it’s well worth a purchase. Tracks like Slaves pt.2 and King are well worth a listen. New music is on it’s way and we can’t wait to hear it.

A Horse Called War closed the night with their epic headline set full to the brim with human pyramids in the audience and bruising circle pits to the sound of thrashing guitars and snarling vocal screams. The band have been around for a while and their experience is evident as they ploughed through their fifty-minute show. Most bands get slated for minimal crowd interaction but AHCW really hit it off especially as it means more time for more music! Like all the other bands, check them out next time they’re local to you!

UP NEXT: Bury Fringe Festival All-Dayer @ The Hunter Club from 1pm-11pm! Entry fee is £8 OTD or £6.60 advance!

Featuring Gaffa Tape Sandy, Tundra, SIAH, Fightmilk, Goldblume, The Baskervilles, The Catch, The Glitter Shop, KULK, Enterlude, Interesting Times Gang, Lemondaze, Kelodown, Noah Evans and more!

Categories
Track Reviews

Track Review: The Catch – Sort It Out

In what is their second track release of 2018, The Catch prove why they are one of the most talked about bands in Bury St Edmunds with Sort It Out.

Sort It Out is slightly different to the track that they released in February, in the sense that Tie Dye was a huge indie rock banger, but the former has it’s own merits and shows the band’s versatility at writing great tracks in whatever style.

On first listen, you get a feel of their Bring Me The Horizon and Lower Than Atlantis influences with the hard guitar riffs which roam throughout the track, as well as the shared vocals of drummer Adam Levey and guitarist Eddie Allen giving the track a rougher edge to previous tracks that they’ve released before.

The Catch are playing various live dates over the coming months with shows at The Hunter Club, Cambridge Junction and Conservatoire East @ West Suffolk College. All the information is on their Facebook page, go check them out. They are a band you need to see live.

Sort It Out is a welcome addition to The Catch’s rapidly growing discography and with the band still relatively new to the scene in Bury St Edmunds, they are without a doubt a trio to keep an eye out for.

NOW LISTEN TO: 03. EP – their debut EP is their best work to date!

Sort It Out was released Friday 20th April on all major streaming platforms. 

Categories
Features Spotlight

TMB42 Spotlight: Sunday Arches

Sunday Arches are our focus in this month’s Spotlight, and you’re going to love them!

It’s an interesting tale how the band formed. Having been friends since school in Colchester and playing music together through their teenage years, the four band members met up under a South London railway arch a decade later (presumably on a Sunday) and set about writing and producing new music!

The start of 2018 saw them release their second EP Feels Like Home which is just honestly superb and will get you hooked from the first listen. Each song is great in it’s own right, Holding A Flame is an exuberant thrasher of a track whereas Watch The Thinker is a track that builds up gently in to an awesome guitar solo.

The title track Feels Like Home was played twice on BBC 6 Music in mid-February, the band cite this as a notable moment for themselves, as well as playing a show at the O2 Academy2 Islington in 2017.

It’s hard to pin-point what the main influences are for the band, sometimes they dig into really gritty rock which is seen in their latest EP, but also tend to go for a more indie-rock  sound like in We Never Were. Frontman Sam Juner said “Our focus is largely on melody and energy… we are into a broad spectrum of music”

Their first EP Extended Play sees the band in a different light, combining rock elements seen in their recent music with more melodic tones added in to give tracks like Gentlewomen and Crocodile that extra bit of brilliance.

So what next for the band? Well, they’re currently working on more new music and are looking for summer shows to play. (Any promoters out there, book these lads!)

After asking him where you see the band in the next few years, Juner had this to say to us:

“We’ve been active now for about a year, played some great shows and released 2 EP’s.  It’s gathering momentum, moving in the direction we want it to and it’s so much fun.
We want to push the songs out there as much as possible, record more and more ambitious material and stay active in the live scene.  As long as we’re enjoying what we’re doing and people are liking the songs, we’re happy.”

 

Alternatively, type in ‘Sunday Arches’ on Spotify

 

Band Members:
Sam Juner – Vocals/Guitar/Lyrics
Ben Springett – Drums
Michael Burley – Guitar
Dom Juner – Bass

Facebook/Twitter: @sundayarches

 

 

 

 

Categories
Track Reviews

Track Review: Heathen – Eye In The Sky

East Anglian band Heathen released their debut original track Eye In The Sky on Friday (19th February) and it’s safe to say it’s epic!

The six-piece group started out as a rock covers band, covering tracks by the legendary likes of Foo Fighters, Bon Jovi and Red Hot Chili Peppers. And after learning this, I feel like this has really helped find their sound since they’ve started writing original tracks.

In 2017, the band started to write original material and have produced an EP called Bite The Bullet which is due for release later in the year.

Eye In The Sky is the lead track from the soon-to-be-released EP, and after listening to this, I can’t wait to hear what else they’ve been working on! A classic rock track with triumphant, passionate vocals, Eye In The Sky is a two and a half minute whirlwind filled with jaw-dropping guitar riffs and brilliantly-honed guitar melodies which really help bring the track together.

A fantastic debut track from Heathen. Touted as “Suffolk’s premier rock covers band” by Radio 1’s Nick Grimshaw, now the band are out for original success. And with this track, they’re off to a winner already!

Buy the track on iTunes here: https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/eye-in-the-sky/1331102752?i=1331103734

Heathen band members:
Greg Smith – Lead Vocals
John Turner – Lead Guitar
Steve Smith – Drums
Boli Boland – Bass Guitar
Dave Hetherington – Rhythm Guitar
Jack Turner – Rhythm Guitar

Social Media links:




Heathen are taking part in BurySOUND this year, competing on 9th February in Heat 3 at Haverhill Arts Centre! Kicking off at 6pm and only £5 a ticket! Come along!