UK indie trio Amber Run has a song likely everyone has heard, whether realized or not. Their saturnine piano hit ‘I Found’ from their 2015 debut album 5AM has been used in several television shows, played immeasurable times over the radio, and of course, became a viral TikTok sound. With nearly a gargantuan 325M streams on Spotify alone, the timeless hit has covered unfathomable ground. Now with their fourth full-length album How To Be Human (TRIPEL Records) Amber Run kicks off a promising album with a short yet equally captivating piano-vocal intro with ‘Flowers (Interlude I)’.
You Me At Six is now encroaching upon their twentieth year of being a band. With seven albums under their belt to show for their work, what else does the band have left to showcase to the world? In the past, the band has shown that they are willing to stray into other genres. The previous album, Night People ‘was a foray into the world of indie-rock, taking inspiration from their peers in the likes of Royal Blood and The Black Keys. Continue reading →
Founding member of the band Television and an early influencer on Punk, Post-Punk, and later the Alternative Rock movement, Tom Verlaine has died. He was 73. Tom died “peacefully” in New York City, “surrounded by close friends,” following a brief illness, according to a news release from Jesse Paris Smith, the daughter of Verlaine’s former partner Patti Smith. Originally teaming up with Richard Hell in Neon Boys, the band eventually became Television, along with fellow lead guitarist Richard Lloyd, helping transform Rock music with their inventive guitar playing and songcraft. Television was one of the first regular bands at CBGB’s which galvanized the Punk Rock movement. Even before Television, Verlaine has a 50-year of song-writing partnership with Patti Smith, a former romantic partner. Later Verlaine’s solo work had a massive effect on Post-Punk as well as Alternative, and he left his imprint on countless other bands he produced, wrote for, and side projects he participated in. RIP.
Following the departure of drummer and founding member Josh Morgan, and an eight years gap between albums, comes The Subways fifth offering Uncertain Joys (Alcopop! Records). A lot has happened during this time, the dreaded c word notwithstanding, frontman Billy Lunn took three years out to study English at Cambridge University. The personal and personnel changes refreshed the band, with the introduction of synthesisers and pop to their brand of indie rock resulting in a textured and more interesting sound.
‘Love Waiting On You’ is a jolly little number with effervescent flourishes of synth, a great marriage between crunching chords and an upbeat pop melody. The title track is a triumph, with a bouncy melody straight from the pages of eighties pop, eased along by the silky smooth backing vocals of bass and keyboard player Charlotte Cooper. It is not just a collage of synths though, as in ‘Lavender Amelie’ they are in the background and complemented by a lush acoustic melody and a soft, XTC style hook.
They are still moments of no frills rock n’ roll, but it is tempered by the lighter moments and stands out all the more for it. The loud love letter to music ‘Black Wax’ blows away the cobwebs, with its punchy, almost primal riff reminiscent of Muse’s big rocker ‘Psycho’. The brash ‘Fight’, about standing up for the oppressed, is a spikey little number with a punk-like simplicity. ‘The Devil and Me’ motors along thanks to its nimble bassline and the propulsive drum beat of new member Camille Phillips. This is followed by the measured pace, alternative sound and subdued melancholia of ‘Joli Coeur’ – showcasing the balance on show and the progress made since the simpler, meat and potatoes like indie of their self-titled album eight years ago.
With Uncertain Joys, The Subwayshave come on leaps and bounds, mixing bold synths and bouncy pop to their straightforward Indie Rock to great effect.
Arising from Cincinnati, Ohio, indie singer and zany songwriter Lincoln puts out his debut album Everything Is Wrong (I Surrender Records), the follow-up to his 2017 EP A Constant State Of Ohio. Twelve tracks dive deep into his mind and thought processes, each one finds inventive ways to stimulate the listener’s senses with their vivid ambiance.Continue reading →
Nuclear Blast Records have had a storming year, and they continue their hot streak with the release of Hell Is Where The Heart Is by Oceans. The four piece whose members hail from Berlin and Vienna released their debut EP Into The Void in 2019 followed by Cover Me In Darkness, a second EP in the same year featuring their interpretations of tracks from the likes of Alice In Chains, Deftones and Radiohead, before dropping their debut LP The Sun And The Cold in 2020.
Respect where it is due. Heavy metal titan, political activist hero and System Of A Down frontman Serj Tankian has yet to offer up a project or product unworthy of the intense and continued attention of those who love music, love the world around them and care deeply about the overt inadequacies of those entrusted with its protection and future.
Bloc Party burst onto the UK music scene with their raucous debut album Silent Alarms in 2005, proving to be a unique act in the indie rock scene, with a collection of uptempo songs blending contemporary post-punk with art rock. The band immediately resonated with a new generation in a similar way that contemporaries such as Arctic Monkeys and The Libertines had, largely helped by the flamboyant personality and distinct vocal style of frontman Kele Okereke. The record went platinum in its first year as the band were championed on mainstream UK radio by the likes of Steve Lamacq and Zane Lowe, with a buzz also being created in the States where extensive touring followed.
From the very first second of the new cut from A Deer A Horse, I was instantly transported. I was instantly back in high school riding a skateboard and skipping school to check out records with my bros. The tracks presented here are so reminiscent of the good old days of grunge and punk. The angst-driven lyrics; the minimalistic approach. I really got into the tones of the guitar. They are very cool and melodic which gives them their own awesome presence.
From the moment of Royal Blood’s self-titled debut seven years ago, the Bristolian duo’s rise was meteoric. Their music is simple, brutal, and effective – taking inspiration from Queens of the Stone Age and The White Stripes and combining big hooks, tasty riffs, and volume to full effect. This beefed-up take on indie rock can only take you so far though, so on the new album Typhoons (Warner Records), they looked toward Dance and Disco to broaden their sound. Continue reading →