New Music Monday: Napoleon ‘Brought Here To Suffer’

Hey you! Yes you! Like a bit of melodic-hardcore? Then stop what you’re doing and listen to this..

Napoleon are a 4-piece unsigned hardcore rock band from Exeter. Unfortunately, vague youtube comments tell me their singer is leaving, but hopefully that won’t stop them from being awesome tunes like this to the public!

Check them out here: https://www.facebook.com/Napoleon.Devon

RC xx

Anti-Flag Join ‘Toast To Freedom’ For Amnesty International

I love hearing that bands I admire are involved in something that I really care about. This is a perfect example: Anti-Flag are the newest bands to team up with Amnesty International for their 50th Anniversary.

The song, ‘Toast To Freedom’ was written by Carl Carlton (Robert Palmer, Eric Burdon, Keb Mo) and Larry Campbell (Levon Helm Band, Bob Dylan, Elvis Costello), as well as  Jochen Wilms and Art for Amnesty founder Bill Shipsey.

Nearly 50 artists collaborated on the recordings, including Marianne Faithful and Kris Kristofferson. More have joined in later to record their own versions of the track, ranging from students at the Institute for Music of the College at Osnabrueck to Russian rapper Basta.

Proceeds of the song will go to benefit Amnesty International, a charity campaigning against human rights abuses.

You can listen to Anti-Flag’s cover below:

For more info, check out http://toasttofreedom.org and http://www.amnesty.org/

RC xx

Kerrang Tour, Brixton Academy 15/02/13

After two weeks of ransacking the UK, the now infamous Kerrang tour finally reached the capital. I went along, just to see what the fuss was about..

Arriving late, I breezed through security and rushed straight into the main standing area, just in time to catch Tonight Is Alive performing their last few songs. There’s a nice moment where the crowd get their lighters out (only in London would there be more lighters than mobiles). It’s only slightly ruined by a friend of mine telling me how much the band like to run around naked backstage. Constantly.

Tonight Alive

The Aussie’s slick pop-punk tunes go down nicely. Its just a shame the venue isn’t more full. It might be the downstairs age limit, or the early start time, but for a tour so huge, its surprisingly to see so many empty spaces.

The arrival of Chiodos is heraled by Taylor Swift’s ‘We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together’ blaring out of the speakers. The crowds reaction is overwhelmingly positive. There group of barely clothed teenage girls behind me scream and dance around. They scream even more as the band come onstage.

The band growl their way through the set, inspiring a few ‘hands in the air’ moments, but overall its nothing spectacular. By the time they start to clear the stage, the crowd are already chanting..

‘Black Veil Brides’. ‘Black Veil Brides’. ‘Black Veil Brides’.

The sound echoes off the dusty ceiling. Swarms of kids in face paint and black skinny jeans push past us, racing to the front. Its clear who everyone is here to see.

Black Veil Brides

There is a thunder of applause and screams as Black Veil Brides appear. Playing at about 10x the volume of all the other acts might give them an unfair advantage, but its one that they don’t need. They tear through the set, mostly comprised of tracks from their mind-blowing new album ‘Wretched and Divine’.

Wil Francis joins the band for a brief moment, but the real star of tonight is vocalist Andy Biersack. Strutting about the stage in jeans so tight they may as well be painted on, he exudes a confidence far greater than his rakish frame would suggest.

Wil Francis with Black Veil Brides

The banter between songs is short, but the performance is immaculate. There’s two brief, and slightly unnecessary disappearances from the stage, but the audience doesn’t seem to mind.

Black Veil Brides are clearly a band on the way up. From what I’ve seen tonight, there’s going to be no stopping them..

RC xx

 

Friday Tune – Fightstar ‘Paint Your Target’

Ok, so I’m not leaving you guys with a classic tonight. Its more of a great tune to start the weekend off to.

Fightstar were born out of the flames of singer / guitarist Charlie Simpson’s first “band” Busted. Possibly the only popstar to credibly re-invent themselves into the rock sphere, much respect goes out to the guy for even braving to try it in the first place.

I think my best memory of Fightstar is watching them on the Radio 1 stage at Reading festival the first year that they came out. There were a lot of bottles being thrown. “Busted” being chanted. They didn’t shout anything back though. Simpson just lowered his head, closed his eyes and screamed into the microphone like his life depended on it.

After a while, the barrage stopped. People actually listened to the music. It was good. Very good.

RC xx

(Anti) Valentines Day

So let’s be honest, if you’re reading this, you’re probably not spending Valentines with that special someone. I’m definitely not. Today I’ve been baking with a friend, spent a long time stuck on a delayed train trying to get in / out of London (story of my life really) and now I’m curled up alone on the sofa watching South Park.

For anyone who’s feeling the same as I am, here’s my pick of the best anti-Valentines songs.

 

Blink 182 – I Miss You

Don’t waste your time on me, you’re already the voice inside my head‘.

Sums it all up really. I find it hard to tell whether this is actually an unconventional love song, or an ode to a break up. Either way, it works pretty well.

 

Funeral For A Friend – Juneau

Yet I’m nothing more than a line in your book

One for anyone who’s feeling sorry for themselves. Now with the added comedy value of seeing FFAF back in the old flicky emo-hair days.

 

Papa Roach – She Loves Me Not

‘Fighting all the time, this is out of line, she loves me not, loves me not
Stuck in a relationship that’s gone bad?

 

Evanescence – Call Me When You’re Sober

How could I have burned paradise? How could I? You were never mine

This one’s for anyone who knows they’re better off alone. Or anyone who needs reminding of that. You’re too good for them anyway..

 

Well I hope that whatever you’re up to this evening, you’re having a good time.

Night guys,

RC xx

Wednesday Wish List: IAWIA Custom Converse

I’m always on the lookout for unique converse, so absolutely love these beauties. IAWIA, run by artist Meg makes lots of custom-painted shoes, plus a few other bits.
Prices start from £30 for custom converse, with these below going for £40 plus p&p.

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For more info, check the Facebook page here.
RC xx

New Video From Anavae ‘Storm Chaser’

Honestly, I was quite stuck for something to write about today. I checked all the usual spots, music magazine sites, rock blogs, even trawling through Facebook for any video posts that I might’ve missed. Still nothing worth writing about.

Feeling a bit stuck, I decided to try Vevo. I don’t use it enough really. A quick flick through the rock section produced this awesome tune from Anavae. It’s a catchy one, a kicking pop punk sound with an electronic twist (if that makes sense?).

These London alt-rockers have already been featured in Kerrang, Rock Sound and AbsolutePunk.net. You can catch them on tour in the UK with I Divide this April, or at Islington Academy on February 21st. Dates on their Facebook here.

‘Storm Chaser’ is the first label release from the band and is out now!

If you like this, youtube search: Invaesion, World In A Bottle

RC xx

New Music Monday: Scholars

Note to anyone thinking of forming a band: Pick a name that’s easy to search for.

scholars

Apparently no-one mentioned this to North London’s Scholars. Lucky for them then, they managed to grab the most obvious Facebook page name: https://www.facebook.com/scholars (I’m linking this now, because if you search for them on there, you’ll find nothing).

The 5-piece have been paying their dues for the last six years, working hard at honing their sound and live performance. The effort has clearly paid off as they’ve landed some impressive support slots, touring with the likes of Pure Love, Twin Atlantic and Canterbury.

A quick rummage around their YouTube channel produces a few gems too.. Drifting between The Bravery style indie rock, breezy pop-punk ‘Tornadoes’ and the more post-hardcore influenced new single ‘Black and Blue’:

You can catch Scholars on tour in the UK this March, or at Camden Barfly on April 10th for their debut album launch show. ‘Black and Blue’ is out on April 1st, with the album ‘Always Lead, Never Follow’ out on April 8th. For more info, check their Facebook page here.

RC xx

Album Review: Mallory Knox ‘Signals’

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I’ll be honest, I bought this album based on the weight of ‘Lighthouse’ alone. That and I’d heard the band name whispered by a few of the other bands / musicians I’m a fan of (Wil Francis, I think this was your doing).
Luckily for me, Mallory Knox’s debut album ‘Signals’ doesn’t disappoint. ‘Beggars’ kicks things off nicely. ‘Wake Up’ and ‘Lighthouse’ are the key tracks though, they scream out, demanding your attention.
There’s a sweet ballad hidden in there too, ‘1949’ is an ode to growing old together (a nice bit of out-of-the-box thinking from a band that clearly haven’t been married for 60 years).
‘Hello’ has to be my favourite track on the album though. There’s something about the vocals from Mikey Chapman in that song, the way he really sings, and like he means it as well. He shows off his skills again in ‘Bury Your Head’. half singing, half whispering and its genuinely touching.
We might have been kept waiting since 2011for this album, but it looks like the time was worth it. Here’s a band starting out with a clear sound and real talent behind it. Expect big things from these guys.
RC xx

Stream The Wonder Years’ New Album ‘Sleeping On Trash’

Philadelphia’s pop-punk 6-piece The Wonder Years are streaming their new album ‘Sleeping On Trash: A Collection of Songs Recorded 2005-2010’ on their YouTube channel. If you haven’t heard of the band before, this is a good opportunity to catch up on their past releases (and then you can pretend you’ve always been a fan..).

If you live in the States, you can catch them on tour with FireworksHostage Calm and Misser this March. They’ll also be hitting the road in the summer for the Vans Warped Tour (which I’ve always wanted to go to. Shame I live in the wrong country!). UK readers, they’re playing Slam Dunk Festival in May.

Here’s my favourite of the album tracks, ‘Zip Lock’. Think early New Found Glory at their best..

You can buy the collection here.

RC xx