Author Archives: HalfEdgeMedia

Arrogant, Unseen

In direct contradiction to their name, Paris-based quintet Cowards is anything but weak or inhibited in their delivery. Thundering with massive, low-end amplification and a downcast, scathing vocal delivery, their noxious brew of sludge/doom is not from, or for, the weak of heart.

Formed by current and ex-members of Sickbag, Death Mercedes, Hangman’s Chair, Eibon and Hellbats, they have already built a reputable arsenal of destructive audio since forming in 2011, but will take this year by the throat in several ways, with a reissue of their debut album, and plans for their next full-length studio endeavour confirmed.

Adobe Photoshop PDFGathering Parisians with an already strong pedigree in dark and heavy music, the band combines hardcore, sludge/doom and black metal on their 2012-released debut LP, Shooting Blanks & Pills. Recorded only six months after the band was formed, the album reflects the  crudeness of bands like Eyehategod, Deadguy or Kickback and the darkness of  Deathspell Omega or Thou. Producer Francis Caste perfectly captured the corrosion and angst of these thirty-eight minutes,  with a no-frills approach. Originally released on France’s Throatruiner Records, Shooting Blanks & Pills is long sold out, yet will see a rebirth on CD and transparent 12” LP via Canadian label Secret Handshake Recordings on September 1st, 2014.

Cowards  has also booked studio time this October to lay down their sophomore full-length, the follow-up to 2013’s mangling Hoarder EP. The band will return to Sainte-Marthe Studio once again with Francis Caste at the engineering helm for the as-yet-unnamed works, which will be completed for early 2015 release.

A track from the album will be featured on a forthcoming Sonic Attack podcast.

http://www.cowards.fr

http://www.facebook.com/cowardsparis

Dominion Of Absolute Power

Iconic New York death metal band, Internal Breeding, will release their long-anticipated new full-length, Imperium,  this September via Unique Leader Records. Produced by the band alongside Joe Cincotta at Full Force Studio (Suffocation, Dehumanized, Mortal Decay) in Ronkonkoma, New York and engineered by Cincotta and Derek Boyer, Imperium features artwork from Mircea Gabriel Eftemie (Carcass, Cryptopsy, The Haunted, Nevermore et al) and serves as the band’s most sonically challenging release to date.

Although Imperium is a new album, it is, in many ways, deeply rooted in the band’s past — a culmination of strong emotions that have been bubbling their way to the surface since 1992’s  Invocation Of Evil demo was made available.

Elaborates the band in a thorough analysis of the record, “Ever since Invocation Of Evil was released, many in the music press and industry simply dismissed the band  as another generic death metal band. We knew different, our fans knew different and the underground press certainly knew different. They understood that we offered something fresh and unique: death metal that focused on pit-friendly grooves, catchiness and hooks that you could actually remember. At the time, we called this approach to death metal ‘Total Fucking Slam.’ And though we garnered a great deal of underground acceptance, we had to fight a perpetual uphill battle against critics, naysayers and elitists who did nothing but talk a lot shit and run their mouths behind our backs or in print. We ignored them and kept plowing forward, but we never forget….

To add insult to injury, our first two albums suffered from horrendous productions which no doubt made it more challenging to get people to truly understand our music. And by the time our third and fourth albums were released, we had no label or tour support and limited resources to keep things going. By the early-to-mid 2000s, we were a broken and dispirited unit and eventually fell into inactivity and disarray.

Eventually our term — slam — had been picked up by hundreds of underground bands and a whole new genre of death metal was spawned. The seeds we had planted had finally come to bloom yet we were unable to enjoy even a modicum of recognition for it. It had been an extremely frustrating twenty years. We gave it our best, but in the end, we fell short of our goals.

These experiences, plus other personal setbacks and tragedies, are the impetus behind the album title Imperium. It means a dominion of absolute power. It’s a statement to those who have caused anyone to feel slighted, disrespected, tormented and generally abused. It’s a clarion call to the victims of these tormentors — the abused child, the bands that struggle and come up short, the outcast, the geek and the populations that have been crushed under the boot of totalitarianism — to rise up, join us and take a rightful place at the throne of power. With Imperium, the time has finally come to turn the tables on the tormentors and make them suffer.

Cover Art High ResThe artwork is also deeply meaningful. We wanted to create an atmosphere that was dark and threatening and were really impressed by the work of Mircea Gabriel Eftemie. He nailed it almost immediately. At the center of the cover is a half-human/half-alien creature holding a withered skull. This creature represents the new master that has risen to power. It is half alien because as our fans know, we have carried on a tradition of using alien themes on our albums since day one. It also represents those who are outcast and treated as an alien to their own race. This alien is holding the skull of his past tormentor, which represents the change in power and the rise of the new Imperium. There are a lot of interesting things that go on in the background, which we’d rather leave open to interpretation. And then there’s the music…”

Imperium will released via Unique Leader Records on September 30th, 2014.

A track from the album will be featured on a future Sonic Attack  podcast.

http://www.facebook.com/internalbleeding

http://www.Internal-Bleeding.com

Love comes to a building on fire

So here we have The Parish Church Fire who have arrived among us from the ashes of Sam Smith & Company. Sam seems to have become someone called Franky Jameson, and his right hand man Chris Gilman is still about; Chris and Franky are alternating covering the bass spot pending the hiring a full time player …… they have posted a couple of videos and the second “Luther” is very promising indeed

You can get the first release “Sunshine In My Soul” from Bandcamp. as well as Luther – both demos.

The bands first gig will be at the Castle, Oldham Street, Manchester on November 1st with the Madding Crowd and Mog Stanley in support – not to be  missed I would suggest.

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Twittering Limbs

So good to see Bolton’s finest – Limbs – back with a new EP,  and,as usual,  a generous portion of quality, quirky, tunes with the utterly memorable “Intercourse Intersection” standing out as something a bit special. There is a wry humour to all of this, with the tongue in cheek “The World Is Even Worse Than You Think…..” demonstrating Chadwick and co. can deliver pathos and irony in equal measure.  There are echoes back to the heady days of The Planets in some of the music, but generally it moves forward from the last release…..this is unique english popular music at its best.

Highly recommended.

See also — Mind The Gap

 

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All hardcore fiends will die by me…….

So we now have the first audio sample from Obliterations‘ debut LP, Poison Everything, which shall be released this October via Southern Lord. Click the link to listen to the album preview, “The One That Got Away”

With current and ex-members of  Black Mountain, Saviours, and Night Horse what we have here is  unhinged punk/hardcore delivery. Promo for the album promises “a mangled, modernised amalgamation of The Stooges, MC5, Laughing Hyenas, Black Flag and Poison Idea surging with a dangerous and adrenaline-fuelled pulse of a back-alley brawl on the verge of going down”.

Obliterations will hit UK/Europe on an extensive tour sponsored by Visions Magazine.

Poison Everything will see worldwide release on Southern Lord on October 14th. Recorded with producer Chris Owens (Lords, Coliseum, Young Widows) at Dave Grohl’s Studio 606 in only three days, mixed by Kurt Ballou (Converge, High On Fire, Black Breath) at God City Studio, and mastered by Brad Boatright (Tragedy, Integrity, Sleep) at Audiosiege, the end result of Poison Everything is a thirteen-song, twenty-nine-minute record full of raw brutality, darkness and aggression, weaving its way through the annals of punk and hardcore, while still sounding fresh and vital.

https://www.facebook.com/Obliterations

http://obliterations.bandcamp.com

Obiterations

Here Come The Tears

Standing in stark contrast to the droning, gorgeous slabs of psychedelic and atmospherically infused doom that comprise the aural output of  Megaton Leviathan, the band itself has been in a constant state of flux since its inception in 2007. By the end of 2012, despite the official announcement of a new album, not only that album, but the fate of the entire project itself were positioned beneath a very precariously dangled sword. Circumstance and internal conflict nearly saw the band’s next major release a spectre with no corporeal form. However, after a redoubling of effort, a reshuffling of the deck and some inevitable missteps along the way, the second full length album, Past 21 Beyond The Arctic Cell, has emerged from the chaos of its birth pangs, prepared to thoroughly swathe a blazing path through the dense forest of the modern musical landscape.

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Mixed by Mort Subite (V.I.I.R.L., Alfheimr, Benighted in Sodom live), Past 21 is a slab of layered noise floating somewhere between post-rock and doom. Epic in scope and sound it moves at a slowish pace but is relentless in offering a variety of shifting themes across four lengthy tracks. Much of the material has the feel of  sacred music around  the central tradition of Western plainchant, albeit with dense layers of guitars in accompaniment.

In April of 2014, band founder and lone original member, Andrew James Costa Reuscher and Subite took Past 21 on the road for a first round of American West Coast dates as a one man show/performance piece, featuring heavy visual elements, Reuscher the unifying human component, and Subite as the hidden hand, mixing live audio. Reuscher later tapped V.I.I.R.L. drummer Markus Covello to join the onstage lineup. With Reuscher handling vocal and guitar operations, and Subite continuing his live audio duties, this revamped, three-man cast will form the core of the bands’ live experience for the duration of the forthcoming  American dates surrounding Deadfest in Oakland where the band will perform alongside the likes of Ephemeros, Connoisseur, Augurs and more.

Past 21 Beyond The Arctic Cell will be released via Seventh Rule Recordings on September 9th, 2014 and is highly recommended for lovers of post-rock grandeur.

http://megatonleviathan.com

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Megaton-Leviathan/185853803548

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Mutant Frenzy

Obake had released a brand new track from their second album, Mutations.

This explosive track is instantly recognisable as Obake, their trademark heavy, lurching doom guitar riffs, make room for Lorenzo’s chameleon-like vocal style, changing constantly throughout the songs duration. However, any sense of this being business as usual is soon shattered by the unpredictable pace-changing drum blasts and ear piercing electronics which hint that a broader range of dynamics are at play on the new record.

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Indeed behind the scenes, the quartet comprising Lorenzo Esposito Fornasari (vocals, piano, electronics), Eraldo Bernocchi (guitar, electronics), Balazs Pandi (drums) and Colin Edwin (Porcupine Tree – bass) have been undergoing a metamorphosis, changing the dynamics and channellng their talents to create this new recording.

Mutations was recorded by Daniel Sandor at Metropol Studio in Budapest, produced and mixed by Eraldo Bernocchi and Lorenzo Esposito Fornasari at The Place in Tuscany and mastered by Michael Fossenkemper at Turtletone Studio – NYC. Obake will be touring from October 2014 onward.

Sludge, Doom and Ghosts

On their recent South West US trek, Tucson-based sludge metal band,  Godhunter and Oakland’s cinematic doom outfit, Secrets of the Sky, were selling a limited-to-100 copies, tour-only, cassette-edition of a new split release between both acts. On this combined effort, entitled GH/0ST:S, both bands supply brand new material, showcasing even further experimentation into each of their respective crafts, with forty minutes of material, including a crushing new opus from each band, as well as a haunting, thematic accompaniment bearing the ghosts theme.

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Through a joint effort between Battleground Records and THE COMPOUND, GH/0ST:S will see a vinyl release on September 9th via a deluxe LP version. This will include an 180-gram black/white vinyl swirl edition — limited to three-hundred copies, each including a digital download coupon.

With respect to previous material by the two bands:

  • Released in February 2014, then issued in a deluxe vinyl edition in May, the fifty-minute dust storm of sludge metal intensity Godhunter’s debut LP City Of Dust delivers is the most concise, diverse, and infectious hymns from the politically-motivated outfit to date. Through a brutally honest outcry the album boasts thought-provoking, thematic tirades against the governments/parties responsible for a wide array of vital societal issues. Released through a union of Earsplit’s label, The Compound, and GODHUNTER’s Battleground Records, City Of Dust is available in a deluxe 180-gram clear vinyl with rose splatter, poly-bagged with a black poly-lined sleeve and full-color 12”x24” lyric/liner sheet, as well as eco-friendly digipak. The album was featured on Sonic Attack 37.
  • Italian label, Kolony Records, released Secret of the Sky’s debut full-length, To Sail Black Waters, in October 2013, fusing progressive elements into their crushing doom metal approach. Three of the band’s six members each contribute with multiple instruments, layering synth/keys, violins and an array of vocal styles atop the crushing rhythm section and massive triple guitar attack, resulting in a dense and stunning forty-one minute opus recorded at Trident Studios with engineer/producer Juan Urteaga (Testament, Machine Head, Cattle Decapitation). The album appeared on many best of 2013 lists.

This latest release is excellent combining the intensity of riff battering metal marching with more ambient and considered sections. Most enjoyable.

http://godhunter.bandcamp.com

https://www.facebook.com/godhuntertucson666

http://www.facebook.com/secretsofthesky

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Rarified Mixtures and Sad Farewells

A few bits of news before I disappear for a week to watch England play India at Old Trafford – let’s hope the weather stays dry……anyhow…..

The ever prolific Melvins return with “Hold It In”, their first studio album as a quartet since 2010’s The Bride Screamed Murder. Joining Buzz Osborne and Dale Crover for the 12-song album are Butthole Surfers‘ guitar player Paul Leary and bass player JD Pinkus. The album was recorded in both Los Angeles and Austin earlier this year, and shall be released via Ipecac Recordings this October.

Melvins New Album

Bitchin Bajas‘ self-titled new album is according to the promo  “something delicate yet definite, gradually washing over your consciousness. Something pure and natural is happening-within the sound, within the song; in the album and in you. The shifts that come, make changes in your moods and your body temperature. On one hand, it is in many ways the ultimate album; and on the other, barely even an album at all. Where these ideas meet is immediately realised in the come-to-life video for the song, “Bueu””.

Using analog, modular video synthesizers, the video for “Bueu” was created by Nick Ciontea and is the first in a series of videos planned for each and every movement on the Bajas’ self-titled new album. The rest are set for a special, digital-only release of the album, available exclusively from Drag City. Tune in and drop out and watch 12 minutes of trippy visualisations.

Portland’s furious sci-fi punks, Big Black Cloud, are back from the lab with their latest dirty bomb, the cassette EP Lessons In Fuck You 2. Tripling down on their intoxicating rarefied mix of punk, noise, psych, surf, and rock, the agita trio takes a dark trip that drives and swerves like a B-movie soundtrack through threat-level guitar attacks, groovy alien eviscerations, and goddamn-us-all-to-hell preaching.

The band is from Portland, Oregon, and comprises guitarist/vocalist Nick Capello, bassist/vocalist Soo Koelbli, and drummer Travis Wainwright. Formed in 2005, They have released two 7-inches, a 10-inch, two 12-inch LPs (Dark Age and Black Friday), and the Shitty Vibrations cassette. They channels inspiration from sources as disparate as Brainbombs and the Beatles, Dolphy and Mingus, and Italian horror and creature features into unhinged rock ‘n’ roll that hits the high marks and innovation of noise-punk greats like Pere Ubu, Circus Lupus, Dead Kennedys, Cows, and Alice Donut.

Lessons In Fuck You 2 was borne of demo sessions recorded and mixed by Andrew Grosse of Caravan Recording (Drunk Dad, Tyrants, Tiny Knives) for the next  LP, the record capturing the band in its own anxiety-fueled element, a rollercoaster ride through a collapsing amusement park of overdriven shout-alongs and untethered instrumentals. The recordings, done on location with a mobile unit in the underground lair of the The Fancy Fox, gave the ever-prolific trio a chance to work through a host of new and old ideas. Whether due to the (dis)comfort of their own space, nothing-to-lose abandon, or present states-of-mind, Lessons In Fuck You 2 finds the band in top form: frantic, pissed-off, and sinister as they further explore their own dark territory with off-balance grooves, instrumental street-race sex jams, and wild freakouts, jagged guitar and cracking drums glued together with rubbery bass overlain with can-you-hear-me-now yells.

Big Black Cloud

Los Angeles sludgecore unit, Colombian Necktie  are about to release  their debut full-length, Twilight Upon Us. Named in honor of a song by Big Black but more commonly known as a method of murder where the victim’s throat is slashed and the tongue is pulled through the open wound, the album is  produced by Erol “Rollie” Ulug (Graf Orlock) at Bright Lights Studios, is the sonic equivalent of this violent and visceral act boasting thirteen maniacal tracks of dark, riff-heavy, emotionally stirring audio menace.

Since forming in the Los Angeles in the autumn of 2010, the band — vocalist Scott Werren, guitarists Juan Hernandez-Cruz and Ben Daniels, drummer Ben Brinckerhoff and bassist Alex DuPuis — has earned a reputation for their punishing riffs and maniacal DIY work ethic. Though clearly rooted in hardcore, tracks like the syncopated, sludgy death march of “Play The Game” and midtempo thrash of “Drought,” complete with squealing synths, add a welcome dose of variance to an album that’s uncompromising in its aggression. “We don’t feel like we fit in any one genre, we just kind of slam things against a wall and focus more on how it makes us feel than where it fits in,” Hernandez-Cruz admits. “Our influences range from Cave In and Snapcase to Orchid and Page 99 so we never try to limit ourselves when it comes to what we do stylistically.”

It hasn’t been a painless ride for the members of the band however and correspondingly, much of Twilight Upon Us is rooted in tragedy as evidenced in the ten-minute opus “Kevin’s Song.” “Kevin was a close friend of ours and former bandmate who actually brought the band together. When he passed away, something came over us and we started writing differently,” Hernandez-Cruz reflects. “The tragedy was really heavy because Kevin was just driving to a show in San Francisco and we knew it could have been any of us.” Instead of falling into depression, the band used their friend’s death as the catalyst to the manifestation of Twilight Upon Us.

“So much of the record is about loss and the struggle to try to cope in a city [Los Angeles] that isn’t always forgiving,” Hernandez-Cruz continues. “The silver lining is that this experience brought us closer as friends and musically in the sense that it made us all vulnerable and forced us to really listen to each other.”

Whether it’s the progressive bridge of “Weep For The Future” or ethereal intro to “Sleepwalking,” the bond the members developed over the past two years helped them dig deeper to incorporate elements that they never could have conceptualized in a perfect world. “This record has a lot of pain on it and a lot of unpredictable moments but it also feels good if that makes any sense,” Hernandez-Cruz summarizes, “and listening to this collection of songs, the listener gains the sense that not only are they not alone but that he or she can gain strength in the darkest of moments.”

Twilight Upon Us will be released independently on August 19th, 2014.

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And it is with great sadness I mark the passing of Positronik.  The band has been a key part of my life for the last four years or so and it is regretful that their excellent tunes didn’t get the audience they deserve. MzDee who left some time back continues to work with Blue Zen, and it is has been, I think, the failure to find a suitable replacement for Danielle that has led us to this situation. Monty continues to perform bass duties for Kit B, as well as his solo project The Junta (whose first gig will be at this years Salford Music Festival). Jeff Black is working again with Carl Lingard of Pearl Divers fame. All three of  the latter group of musicians can be heard on the Salford Streets Charity album.

 

 

 

 

A Post Modernist Road Movie

West Coast Sick Line

The Road to Billinge Hill

German Shepherd

1st August 2014

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When it comes around to album of the year it will be a straight up fight between Kill Pretty‘s “Bubblegum Now!”, which hopefully will be out in September, and this third outing from West Coast Sick Line.

And yes I know that  there have been plenty of great albums this year already, and no doubt there will be a lot more to come, but I am convinced that nothing else will come close to what we have here, and the aforementioned planned double CD set from the Pretty ones.

We’ve been building up to this of course, the progress from “Hope You All Have Nightmares, Except Kirsty” through “Our Name on the Door” to this collection of songs is evident and immensely pleasing. The trade mark Dusty Moonan tunes are here, but Stacey Bates is clearly a more potent force in the partnership this time around. The writing has moved up a notch, and as usual it’s lyrically excellent with the usual balance of wry humour, intemperate ranting and sardonic observation.

There is a sort of concept thing going on here, a journey if you would, but it’s not a linear tale, more a series of observations. There is a beginning, a middle, and an end but they aren’t obvious, a post modernist take on a love story perhaps?

The journey starts with a train announcement from Colwyn Bay station mapping out a journey east to Greater Manchester – the drums kick off in tribal style and we are off with a guitar riff in Knack territory with Moonan venting through filtered vocals. A great opener. The short “Keep Her Talking” with its call and response between Dusty and Stacey is a breathtakingly glam-tastic slice of pop-punk. With “You Again” Bates is to the fore with a stunning vocal performance via a tune which echoes Dusty Springfield, an amazing song which places North Wales kitchen sink drama in a para-Motown world – Moonan plays clever little musical tricks, dropping referential hints, the song moves from moody UK soul to straight out rock and roll with effortless wonder, it’s like he has extracted the high points of UK pop over the last 40 years and distilled them in an impossibly wonderful song. Imagine Burt Bacharach co-writing a tune with Godley & Creme with orchestration by John Barry.

“Polygramme Video” is repetitive  in an ear-worm sense, Dusty looks back to the days of VHS/Betamax wars with a caustic wit.

“Into Ya Home” is a typical Moonan rant focusing on some sort of tirade against the middle classes – insanely catchy glam-rock hooks, pumping beats and funky bass, with some sexy uttering from Stacey, make this rather special.

“Wasp In The Car” is pure genius – echoing Roy Wood at his best – the Beatles come to mind as well – both the lyrics and the melodic development is mesmerising taking 60s pop hooks and placing them very firmly in the 21st century. Compare this say with Elbow and their recent releases and this frankly wipes the floor with the Bury misanthropes.

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The second half of the album gets a little more experimental and varied- “Harry Christ” is an acoustic led exploration – I wasn’t sure about it at first but it grows on repeat plays into an impressive tour de force.

“Be The Sunrider” deals with the myth that “Blade Runner” the film was filmed at Stanlow Power Station, “Roundabouts of Birchwood” gets into rock and roll/jive territory no doubt will sound great live, and concludes with a self-deprecating comment.

The last ten minutes of the album are breath-taking – the epic “Bubonic Church” is a triumph of light and shade – with a catchy refrain builds into a crescendo chorus. They say you should always leave them wanting more and closing track “She Reads Subtitles Aloud” certainly does the trick. Starting with a basic guitar line and matching vocals it develops into a catchy pop/rock tune, which then morphs into a piece of experimental word play and then resolves in a superb coda. If you aren’t immediately pressing the repeat play button on this one then I despair of you!

If you want a comparison or two lets say Todd Rundgren at his most inventive, 10CC at their height and in terms of structure and content, but not necessarily sound, I guess i’m looking at something like The Go-Betweens “Tallulah” or “Hex Enduction Hour” by The Fall. There is real genius at work here and you need to listen.

And here is a virtual interview conducted via cyberspace with Dusty about the album…..

So,  the third album – what were you hoping to achieve?

 This was supposed to be our second album. However, the guys didn’t like the idea at the time. In retrospect, they were right as ‘Our name on the door’ really did depict where we were. Getting drunk and having fun.  The Pop element of it kicked down doors and introduced us to an audience we may never have got if we went straight into a concept album at that point. ‘Kirsty’ has a vague theme and I wanted ‘Our Name’ to do too, but it didn’t and that’s just the way it went. But I didn’t want another Pop album this time. If we tried to do stuff like ‘The North’ or ‘431’ again it would have felt like we were forcing it.

States (Stacey Bates)  is more of a partner in this release – was that deliberate?

States being more involved was totally deliberate. There have been so many occasions where I have listened to the previous two albums and wished she sang more. Ever since I came back from Glasgow three years ago she has been the only constant when everyone else has come and gone. I really wanted her to take the lead on some from the start, but it’s difficult, as I write impulsively. It was a happy accident that the parts she sung on sound like they were written for her as she does such a great job,  “You Again”, which I think she could have written herself. One of my favourite aspects of Billinge is States being involved so much.

Is it a concept album? What’s the underlying message.

The concept initially came about because I’ve been accused of always writing in character. I find it’s a good disclaimer for when I write something a bit lewd. I still do on this album, but much of it is from personal experience. Even stuff like family troubles. Some of the lyrics are uncomfortably personal, but I lighten them up with humor so they sound more flippant. It kind of freaked me out a bit when I got too close.

My whole world until the age of about 22 was Colwyn Bay to Wigan and all in between. The fictional part comes in the form of the characters in the story. It’s based on a teenage love lost when the girl moves to Billinge leaving the main protagonist in Colwyn Bay. Some of it is based on real relationships where you mould them all into one, then its part road story about getting to Billinge by any means to rekindle the love that died 20 years before.

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There is a strong 60s feel on some tracks – do you agree?

Yeah, I agree. A bit 70’s too. I’m unsure if some of that comes from the players. Like Dragan’s drums or Mark’s Piano. Some of the nervous energy that dominated the previous two albums was gone and I think the songs are more crafted. I hate that term ‘Crafted’, makes me sound like a twat. But the songs rely more on dynamics and emotion, rather than fun jams. I possibly wanted to conform on the previous album, but it was important that this album sounded exactly how I felt. A journey we can take the listener on. Pleasing anyone was the last thing on my mind in regards to how commercial the songs were. I thought we had enough pop songs on the previous album, so we could please ourselves this time. If any of them sound like singles, that’s fantastic, but it wasn’t deliberate. I think it’s more focused as a result and stands up more as a complete album.

What is Bubonic Church about?

Haha. It was originally the opening track and the story was supposed to start off with a murder. Inspired by Raymond Pettibon’s artwork on Sonic Youth’s ‘Goo’ of  Hindley & Smith. Then the two characters ran off to Billinge. I was talked out of that idea by States, so I came up with the love  story. That’s why ‘Bubonic ‘and ‘Into Ya Home’ sound out of context, lyrically. They are mainly there as I thought they were strong songs. Actually, the folks at German Shepherd talked me into putting “Into Ya Home” on the album. I mean, some of those psychedelic road movies don’t even have a beginning, middle or an end. It has all of them. So the narrative is a lot clearer than some of that stuff.

You are rehearsing the live band at the moment – gigs soon?

We’ve been rehearsing for about two months and we’re just about ready. Got an amazing rhythm section in Nathan & Richie as well as States shocking us all with how quickly she’s picked up the keys. We’ve worked on making the songs more of a performance, so we’ve changed a few things around. One thing is for sure, you won’t be seeing your average shoe gazers when you come to see us.

A limited edition CD version of the album will be available via German Shepherd and for sale at gigs.

The album will be available from German Shepherd from Friday 1st August  – here

 

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