There’s Still A Future In England’s Dreaming – CULT FIGURES Impress With New Ardent Album ‘DERITEND’

5 May 2021

Band: CULT FIGURES
Who: Yesteryear’s London punks
having sonic fun again since 2016.

Album: DERITEND
Released: 26 March 2021 – 2nd album

Info: ‘Deritend‘ owes its title to a historic industrial area just outside Birmingham
town centre first mentioned in 1276. The mysterious iconic name was a bus route terminus and has a strong emotional connection, evoking the nervous excitement
of those long rides into town on our way to Barbarellas. But it conveys so much more: Deritend is an album that reflects on the past, speculates on the future, but for the
most part is fairly and squarely a comment on the lives we are living now.

Artwork: A huge, monolithic rubble pile on the approach to Deritend (Birmingham).
“It’s a powerful and intriguing image that does somehow encapsulate the past, present
and future
,” says the band’s Stuart Hilton.

Turn Up The Volume hears: Vintage Brit-pop, Brit-rock and Brit-balladry, all rolled into one. You’ll hear echoes of The Boo Radleys (Chicken Bones / Donut Life), the Mekons (Exile / Concrete & Glass), Maximö Park (Privilege / Silver Blades) and Dexys (Concrete And Glass / White Noise). The cliché ‘all killers, no fillers‘ is spot-on accurate here. This is the sound
and look of today’s Brexit. First-class songwriting, first-class tunes, first-class album.

There’s still a future in England’s Dreaming.

Singles/clips: Concrete & Glass / Chicken Bones

– CONCRETE & GLASS –

– CHICKEN BONES –

Stream/buy Deritend here…


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CULT FIGURES: Facebook

Reflections About The Unknown Tomorrow – Portland’s FAR LANDS Released Second Album ‘THERE BE MONSTERS’

4 May 2021

Band: FAR LANDS
Who: Portland-based singer-songwriter Andy McFarlane,
producer Matt Drenik and Ivan Howard of The Rosebuds,
Gayngs, Howard Ivans
.

Album: THERE BE MONSTERS
Released: 30 April 2021 via Get Loud Records.

Info: “The creative simplicity of recording stood in stark contrast to the developing
situation in Portland, with the COVID-19 pandemic being compounded by scattered
protests and calls for racial justice. The album’s themes of exploring the unknown,
both externally and internally, started to take on a different tone as 2020 wound on.
As the sessions drew to a close and the album became ready for release, McFarlane
sat back and took stock…

““Releasing the album in 2020 didn’t feel right. My story wasn’t the one the world needed
to hear”… Not much has changed. The world is still aimless and unsettled, the disease still
rages, and things are still tough, but it’s time for the world to hear McFarlane’s second act.
One of love, growth and change. It’s a reminder to navigate these trying days with an open heart, and take comfort in the ever-expanding unknown, because maybe you’ll end up in an ice storm that will change your life.”

Turn Up The Volume: This is a record that feels and breathes like 2021. What about
the current world problems? What about the future? What about the science-fiction-like pandemic and its unknown aftermath yet to come, the ever-recurring racist monster, not only in the USA, the overall global human intolerance. Time to sit back. There Be Monsters
is a fitting soundtrack to accompany your worrying thoughts. The heart and soul of The National, the gloomy sentiments of Bonnie “Prince” Billy and the indie folk squiggles of Bon Iver come to mind. Sit down, dim the lights, empty your mind and let Far Lands make you hope that the unknown tomorrow will be alright.

Single/video: It’s Time

Full album…

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FAR LANDS: Facebook

BLACK INK STAIN Bulldoze Their Way To Your Dark Side With New LP ‘INCIDENTS’

3 May 2021

Band: BLACK INK STAIN
Who: Noise force from
Clermont Ferrand, France

Album: INCIDENTS
Released: 30 April 2021 – Recorded, mixed and mastered
by David Weber at Studio des Forces Motrices (Drive Blind,
Tantrum, Condense, Portobello Bones
)

Score: Don’t play this thunderous noise-powerhouse on your car stereo ’cause
incidents will happen as Black Ink Stain‘s brain-breaking havoc infiltrates the dark
side of your mind causing 35 minutes of paranoia. All hell breaks loose from the
scorching post-punk opener Slice Of Pain. And the moment you’re halfway the LP
with the obstreperous sledgehammer STO2 you have no idea anymore whether
it’s day or night as the clamorous in-your-face-and-ears vocals prevent you from
thinking clearly. When the demonic closer S.O.M.A. fades out this maniacal trio
has bulldozed you KO. As I said, don’t play this mental disturbance in your car.

Alert your neighbors
before you press play…


.

Incidents CD/LP/Digital available via Pogo Records and Day Off Records

Saturday Night Blues Rock Fever – New ROYAL BLOOD Album ‘TYPHOONS’ Is Out

2 May 2021

Band: ROYAL BLOOD
Who: Blues-rock tandem out of Brighton, UK
who entered the arena with blustery bravado
back in 2014 with their self-titled debut album.

Album: TYPHOONS – 3rd LP
Released: 30 april 2021.
Order info here.

KERRANG! writes: “So confident and perfectly measured are Royal Blood
here that, while definitely focused on the stars, they sound like they never
noticed the gutter was there in the first place. It’s rock’n’roll lit up by a disco
ball, and has there ever been a time when we’ve needed that more?”.

Full review: here. Score: 4/5.

Turn Up The Volume: Expect Saturday Night Blues Rock Fever with several
monumental disco-esque thunderclaps (Trouble’s Coming / Oblivion / Mad
Visions
/Boilermaker / Hold On) that I’ll have on my earphones for some
time to come. Kudos, to Royal Blood, for not milking the same formula
over and over again like The Black Keys did with their last few albums.

Singles: Typhoons / Trouble’s Coming

– TYPHOONS –

– TROUBLE’S COMING –

Dance your ass off…

.
ROYAL BLOOD: Facebook

Wild Party Squad DROPKICK MURPHYS Drop New Fiesta Album ‘TURN UP THAT DIAL’

1st of May 2021

Band: DROPKICK MURPHYS (Boston, US)
Active: 1996–present / 10 albums

New album: TURN UP THAT DIAL
Released: 30 April 2021 – 10th LP – order info here

KERRANG! says: “There can’t be many bands who have given as much back as the Dropkick Murphys. When the music carousel ground to a halt last year, the Irish-rooted Bostonians took to livestreaming – raising some $750,000 for charities and to support their out-of-work crew. It was a huge gesture, but not untypical of these indomitable champions of ordinary folk… The band’s motivation isn’t to tickle every one of our varied aural taste buds. It’s simply to get us back on our feet. Turn Up That Dial won’t dethrone 2005’s career-defining The Warrior’s Code, but it’s a welcome hug from a collective who are, as ever, the best of men.” Score: 4/5.

Turn Up The Volume says: Move your chairs, your couch, your table and your widescreen TV ’cause here come the American/Celtic punks again with another wild fiesta LP. This is the kind of band that makes me long for live music to come back asap, so I can sing along, scream along, jump along, and drink along with thousands when these party animals take the stage again.

Single: Middle Finger

Turn up that dial AND the volume
for the full album

.
DROPKICK MURPHYS: Facebook

Multi-Flavoured Indie Pop – Discover Album ‘ZÖE’ By Scottish Band NIGHTSHIFT

29 April 2021

Band: NIGHTSHIFT (Scotland)
Who: Group formed in 2019 in the ecosystem of Glasgow’s current indie scene.
The band self-released a full-length cassette on CUSP Recordings in early-2020,
laying the foundation of their sound; hypnotic, melodic, understated indie post
punk with hooks that stick around long after you’ve heard them.”

Info: The songs were pieced together and recorded during quarantine lockdown,
with each member composing or improvising their parts in homes/home studios.
The isolation actually allowed for an openness and creativity to flow and many of
the songs took on radically different forms from when they were originally envisioned.
The album became a collection of sketches of hope, growth, awareness of the power
of the world & the power of self, kith, kinship, friendship, resistance, and possibility.

Turn Up The Volume: Echoes of Warpaint‘s trippy pop glow and Fiona Apple‘s
enigmatic art-pop peppiness, a varied pallet of sonic colors, bluesy vocal harmonies
and at times, a relaxing jazzy and folkish feel, that’s what your ears will absorb when
they discover this multi-flavoured record. Exquisite stuff.

Stream/buy ZÖE here…


.
NIGHTSHIFT: Twitter

British Indie Rock Trio THE PALE WHITE Scores With Multi-Faceted Debut Album ‘INFINITIVE PLEASURE’

28 April 2021

Band: THE PALE WHITE
Who: Emotive indie rock trio from Newcastle, UK

Album: INFINITIVE PLEASURE – debut LP
Released: 23 April 2021 – order/stream info here.

The band: “No one knows more than us that this album is way overdue, but there are
twists and turns in every journey that lead you to the right place and time. As a band, that
time is now. As humans, well… we can all agree that the world isn’t exactly ‘normal’ right now – but we refuse to wait any longer! Blood, sweat & tears have went into the past 5 years to get
to this point. We’ve poured our whole lives into it.”

Turn Up The Volume: From pumped-up guitar pop (Take Your Time / Confession Box)
to rollicking stoner rock with Black Sabbath drones in the back (Medicine / Sonder). From turbulent blues stompers à la The Black Keys (Glue / That Dress), to heart & soul balladry (Anechoic Chamber Blues / Still No Taste / Frank Sinatra). This debut is an instant triumph!
Don’t miss it!

Singles: That Dress / Glue / Take Your Time

– GLUE –

– TAKE YOUR TIME –

Full album…

.
THE PALE WHITE: Facebook

THE MARS VOLTA – ‘LANDSCAPE TANTRUMS’ (Unfinished Recordings From Their 2003 Debut Album)

26 April 2021

Band: THE MARS VOLTA (El Paso, Texas)
Who: The founders – Cedric Bixler Zavala and
Omar Rodriguez Lopez – of post-hardcore rockers
At The Drive-In, plus two friends
Active: 2001-2013 / 6 albums

Album: LANDSCAPE TANTRUMS . A special issue of
unfinished original recordings of the duo’s 2003 debut
De-Loused in the Comatorium.

The vinyl version was part of their career-spanning 18-LP vinyl
box set La Realidad De Los Sueños (‘The Reality of Dreams’) released
last week. The box sold out the moment it was announced (only 500
copies were available)

To make it up to their loyal fans who didn’t get a chance to buy the
Box Set The Mars Volta decided to make Landscape Tantrums
streamable on Spotify. It reminds you of why the press loved these
manic prog-rockers’ debut LP.

Here we go…

.
THE MARS VOLTA: Facebook

Artwork original 2003 LP De-Loused in the Comatorium

Stream here…

Lost ALAN VEGA Album ‘MUTATOR’ Is A Thrill-ing Soundtrack For A David Lynch Nightmare

23 April 2021

Artist: ALAN VEGA
Born Alan Bermowitz on June 23, 1938.
Passed away on July 16, 2016 (78 years old)
Active: 1970–2016 (with Suicide,
solo and multiple collaborations )

Album: MUTATOR
Info: In 1995/1996 Vega and his wife Liz Lamere, recorded
an album called Mutator. But it never saw the day of light. Then,
back in 2019 Lamere and close Vega friend Jared Artaud discovered
the original tapes and decided to mix the songs into a proper LP.
Release: 23th April 2021 by Sacred Bones Records.

Order info: here.

NME says: “The late Suicide pioneer’s wife and collaborator Liz Lamere has unlocked
the Vega Vault, spewing forth more NYC gutter rock and apocalyptic proclamations. Vega’s visions have come of age again in the post-indie deconstructions of 2021, and ‘Mutator’ might well find favour with fans of his distant descendants like Squid, Perfume Genius, Sleaford Mods and Black Midi. A quarter of a century on, this lost rumble from post-punk vaults finds new context, as a lesson in uncompromising art from an old master.”

Full review here. Score: 3/5.

Liz Lamere (Vega’s widow) remembers: “Our primary purpose for going into the studio
was to experiment with sound, not to ‘make records. I was playing the machines with Alan manipulating sounds. I played riffs while Alan morphed the sounds being channeled through the machines.’

Sacred Bones (label) says: “Vega was constantly creating. That process naturally led to a wealth of material that didn’t see the light of day immediately when it was recorded, which came to be known as the Vega Vault. ‘Mutator’ is the first in a series of archival releases from the Vault that will come out on Sacred Bones Records.”

Turn Up The Volume: Most of the lost albums that eventually came/come to the
surface one day should have stayed lost forever. If they were good enough to be
released the moment they were recorded they would have never ended up in a
smelly cellar or, worst case, in a trash can.

So what about Alan Vega’s lost one? One: it feels special to have the legend back. Two:
the album seems to come from a very dark place, from the deepest corners of Vega‘s soul, creating a nightmarish and Kafkaesque chill-out atmosphere for a 30-minute David Lynch film-noir. Yes, it’s not a lost album, it’s a lost soundtrack, a thrill-ing one where reality is disguised as surreality. A most welcome find.

Tasters/tracks: Nike Soldier / Fist

– NIKE SOLDIER –

– FIST –

Stream/buy full album here…

ALAN VEGA: Facebook

Psychedelic Stoner Blues – Swiss Engine MYSTIC SONS Dropped Their New Album ‘CURSES AND SPELLS’

22 April 2021

Band: MYSTIC SONS (Switzerland)
Who: Some random guys from Switzerland
playing some random rock and roll.


(photo: Lucien Grandjean / via FB-page Mystic Sons)

Album: CURSES AND SPELLS
Released: 16 April 2021

Turn Up The Volume says: These Swiss motherrockers build a huge
wall-of-titanic-stoner-blues-sound influenced by other motherrockers
such as Black bloody Sabbath (Curses And Spells / Great Horse), Monster
Magnet
(Girls Of The Night / Helpless Blues) and Fu Manchu (False Gods).
LOUD. LOUDER. LOUDEST. Oh, my poor stereo-speakers, I hope they
survive this ear-splitting trio.

Single: Helpless Blues

Stream/buy the noizzzz here…


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MYSTIC SONS: Facebook

Recorded and mixed by Jan Saunier at Blend Studio – Lutry
Mastered by Kent Stump at Crystal Clear Studio – Dallas
Artwork by Bertrand Bouchardeau