giovedì 31 dicembre 2009

Murry The Hump "Songs of Ignorance"



Simpatici i nostri ragazzi, autori di un disco leggiadro e intelligente, in bilico tra pop, folk e indie i Murry durarono decisamente troppo poco, ma la piacevolezza di questo disco rimane intatta! (2001 Too Pure)


....A second single for the label, "Don't Slip Up" and the debut album Songs of Ignorance followed. The album was described by Andy Gill in The Independent as displaying "a warmth and charm to the group's jangly indie-pop that's entirely engaging", while the NME's April Long said that it revealed "a canny aptitude not only for hook-laden guitar tricks but also story-telling", describing the band as "somewhere between the bucolic surrealism of Super Furry Animals and the cerebral pop of XTC." The Sunday Times selected "Cracking Up" as one of the 'Tracks of the Year' at the end of 2001, describing it as "Joyous, mad, brief. 2001's perfect pop song, from a great Welsh band"; [8] Their review of Songs of Ignorance from May that year also described the track as "so ripe - it has three different choruses - and so joyous, it makes you want to tear your clothes off and run for the hills.".... (http://wapedia.mobi/)

In the wake of Brit-pop, it seemed the sole export of Wales consisted entirely of the earnest stadium rock of Kelly Jones or the whoopee-cushion psychedelia of bands like the Super Furry Animals and Gorky's Zygotic Mynci. But occasionally, as with Songs of Ignorance, there was a fair indication that at least wry acoustic trios named after one of Al Capone's henchmen could survive just fine. Songs here revolve around coke-dealing wedding ceremonies ("We were walking down the church aisle, tried to score some ultra white/So I called him on his mobile, did not think it right," from "Don't Slip Up"), and the results often sound like an emo cabaret act covering Rod Stewart's "Maggie May" ("Cracking Up"). And yet, Murry the Hump rarely let the mirth boil over. Lo-fi, Amish acoustics are peppered throughout, seldom overstaying their welcome -- as they do in the charmless opener, "Green Green Grass of Home," which the band clearly find more amusing than anybody else -- and it's easy to lean back in the chair and let all the uncomplicated insincerity soak itself into the pores. (Dean Carlson - All Music Guide)

They might hail from the idyllic Aberystwyth in the heart of West Wales, but Murry the Hump's Songs of Ignorance in no way evokes the whimsical, eccentric air of mysticism that hung in the air like sweet dope smoke around the debut records from Gorky's Zygotic Mynci or Super Furry Animals. No, despite a passion for the dynamic of glam rock and the occasional countrified slide guitar, this is a thoroughly modern, exceedingly British record--far more in the spirit of Pulp's "Do You Remember the First Time" than any wistful nostalgic foray into musical yesteryear. This is largely down to Murry the Hump's incredibly charismatic, exceedingly lanky lead singer Matt Evans--a songwriter with all the wry charm of his self-confessed lyrical hero, Hefner's Darren Hayman. Take the unashamedly sentimental love song "Booze and Cigarettes", which breaks hearts with beautifully simplistic allegory ("You fill my spleen with nicotine") or the slightly goofy charm of "Green Green Grass"--a song about scoring Class Bs with a helplessly grin-inducing opening couplet: "My dealer drives a three-wheeler / Lives in a house by the side of the sea". Thankfully, for all their arch-eyebrowed humour, Murry the Hump write such pretty, affecting music that it's no trial to take this glorious debut seriously. "Songs of Ignorance"? It's bliss. (Louis Pattison - http://www.amazon.co.uk/)


- Green Green Grass
- Cracking Up
- Thrown Like A Stone
- Don't Slip Up
- Colouring Book
- Valley Girl
- Booze And Cigarettes
- The House That Used To Be A Ship
- Five
- New Deal
- Vodka And Wine


MURRY THE HUMP

mercoledì 30 dicembre 2009

Marion "This World and Body "











Quanto amavo i Marion, quanto ho adorato questo disco che ebbe il merito di arrivare fino al decimo posto nella classifica britannica. Esordio magnifico per un gruppo che aveva nel divino Jaime la forza e la debolezza dell'insieme...così angelo o così diavolo? Mah. Fate voi. Nel disco c'è chi ci sente dentro echi di Joy Division, primi U2, Cult, Cure, Smiths. Io ci sento guitar rock sincero, diretto, intenso e avvolgente...ci sento l'incanto, il sogno e l'incubo. Ci sento i Marion.
Ps...Tania, tocca a te!! (1996 London)


After a string of slightly inconsistent singles, Marion pulled it all together for This World and Body, a fiery and thrilling blast of rock with some fine hints of delicacy cropping up throughout. The neo-Smiths comparison that the band won for itself -- and just as arguably created for itself -- makes a certain sense, mainly through the guitar work. Grantham and Cunningham combine into a fine team, and if together it's not quite Johnny Marr reborn, the two balance full, blasting riffs, clipped rhythm sections, and abbreviated, crisp soloing, acoustic and electric guitars both regularly used. It's not so original that it's immediately recognizable, but it's really good, inspired playing from both track for track that draws on any number of styles to make a great end result. The rhythm section is agreeably frenetic as well, Mousa's drumming a clear step above timekeeping thrash and bash. Harding is another matter -- while there's no doubting his sheer bravura and desire to throw himself into his singing, sometimes the effect is unpleasant. "Let's All Go Together," which should be a totally triumphant charge, is almost ruined by his extreme yelping of his lyrics in the verses, a clear case of loving his voice not too wisely but too well (the overwrought words don't help much). Other examples could be cited, but thankfully it's not endemic through This World and Body; often the band, helped by Al Clay's solid, lively production, and Harding combine just right. The re-recorded "Sleep" makes the best case for the album and band, the musicians bursting with energy right from the opening riff to the galloping conclusion, Harding riding the song with vim and controlled passion. Other definite highlights working seeking out include "Your Body Lies," which shows Harding can tone things down where appropriate, and the moody crawl into louder thrash of "All for Love." (Ned Raggett, All Music Guide)


- Fallen Through
- Sleep
- Let's All Go Together
- Wait
- The Only Way
- I Stopped Dancing
- All For Love
- Toys For Boys
- Time
- Vanessa
- Your Body Lies
- My Children

MARION

domenica 27 dicembre 2009

Kinesis "You Are Being Lied To"



Decisamente un peccato che questo sia il saluto definitivo per i Kinesis. Non si piega il gruppo a canzonette commerciali e a finte chitarre per bambini finti rockers, anzi, rilanciano e si fanno ancora più secchi e brucianti. Ma si sa, il mercato va da 1 altra parte. (2005 Captains Of Industry)

Just over three minutes into this record, Michael Bromley is choking on a mixture of anxiety and regret as he spits out the prophetic riposte, "You are being lied to by those who should protect you." It sounds bitter, it is bitter, but then again, if you were in Kinesis' position, you'd have have every justifiable reason to be.
Five years ago they were being touted by all and sundry as the saviours of British rock, and tours with the likes of Muse and the Manic Street Preachers seemed to only enhance their reputation. But then along came the Strokes and every other band with a "The" prefix in one hand and the entire back catalogue of the Velvet Underground and Chas & Dave in the other and before you know it, redundancy beckoned
As a final epitaph of Kinesis' short-lived legacy, You Are Being Lied To doesn't have the immediate charm and charisma of it's predecessor 'Handshakes For Bullets'. Instead it pays more than a passing nod to those who've inspired the Bolton foursome both before and during their brief passage through the music industry, with 'Everything You Thought You Knew To Be' and 'Rainbow In The Night' casting a brief glance in Matt Bellamy's direction and the fiery 'Principles Are A Luxury' owing more than the odd Corgan-ism to Mellon Collie...-era Smashing Pumpkins.
Nevertheless, Kinesis do leave their own distinctive blueprint throughout, with 'Perception Management' easily rivalling the timeless 'Billboard Beauty' as one of their finest moments, and the penultimate blast of 'A Prayer For Death' finally bringing the curtain down on their agit-rock manifesto.
"Just remember, we are a vacancy" Bromley reminds us and quite frankly, despite the good time ethos of Franz, The Killers et al, the sooner that gap is filled the less complacent the music industry will be.
R.I.P. Kinesis. You will be missed. (Dom Gourlay - http://drownedinsound.com/)

"Kinesis do leave their own distinctive blueprint throughout, with 'Perception Management' easily rivalling the timeless 'Billboard Beauty' as one of their finest moments, and the penultimate blast of 'A Prayer For Death' finally bringing the curtain down on their agit-rock manifesto." - DrownedinSound

"Heartbreaking…this record shows the fragility and emptiness of the rock ' n’ roll dream we all secretly harbour. Kinesis have to be applauded for having the balls and strength to make this album, one that has such conviction and honesty to put most other bands to shame." – Sounds XP

"Given time Kinesis have proved they can produce some stunning music." – Designer Punk

"This is a superlative record - not the last rites of band in decline but a documentary of four musicians at the height of their powers and stretching every style they approach to the limit." - Tasty

"'You are being lied to' is certainly a different album, a difficult album, one that will show you its greatness when you listen to it intentionally. It's one of those records that will only be visible to the lucky few who have open eyes, brains that work and a good set of ears. Don't miss it." - 4.5/5 europunk.net

- A Voice To Preserve
- You Are Being Lied To
- Everything You Thought You Knew To Be
- Principles Are A Luxury
- Perception Management
- Like Vultures
- Have My Sympathy
- Rainbow In The Night
- A Prayer For Death
- The Question Has Changed

KINESIS

Sneaker Pimps "Splinter"









Se ne va la signorina Kelly e la festa sembra finire, invece è un nuovo inizio per il gruppo che si sposta su sonorità più oscure: elettronica romantica e "dark" che non disdegna chitarre acustiche per sottolineare malessere e inquitudine. Chris vocalmente è impeccabile. (1999 Clean Up)


QUANDO ERA CIRCOLATA LA NOTIZIA DELL'ABBANDONO DELLA FRONTMAN KELLY, AI PROFANI ERA SORTO PIÙ DI UN DUBBIO sul futuro degli Sneaker Pimps. Finito il momento di hype che circondava il trip hop, Six Underground era finita a far da colonna sonora per spot di lavastoviglie, e tutto sembrava ormai fagocitato a beneficio delle pause serali di casalinghe e impiegati pantofolai.
Il quartetto che firma Splinter, oltre a essere lo stesso già di scena in tour, è in realtà il nucleo originario che aveva dato vita ai Frisk, diventati i Pimps quando la necessità, che sembrava impellente, di una voce femminile, aveva spinto a inglobare nella band Kelly Dayton, poi rivelatasi un bagaglio ingombrante, una prima donna invadente. Quel che è certo è che nessun'altra voce meglio di quella di Chris Corner, ambigua, androgina, avrebbe potuto trovare toni di un romanticismo talmente cupo e appassionato, una dose di ossigeno per chi ha amato Joy Division, Virgin Prunes, i primi Tears For Fears, Cocteau Twins, Dead Can Dance, Marion.
Tralasciando Low Five, un singolo che è davvero troppo Depeche Mode, da Splinter emerge intatta l'anima oscura della band, malata, figlia della new wave legata all'elettronica (non alla dance), ma non ancora degenerata nel goth, che ha preso il sopravvento sulle apparenze, su quello che era trendy, ed è sfociata nell'aria struggente di Destroying Angel, nella fragilità di arpeggi di chitarra su cui la voce filtrata costruisce una rete sottile, che intrappola in un'oscura onda di solitudine. Paradossalmente, masochisticamente, non si può che inneggiare alla resurrezione degli Sneaker Pimps. (Monica Melissano - http://www.stradanove.net/)


- Half Life
- Low Five
- Lightning Field
- Curl
- Destroying Angel
- Empathy
- Superbug
- Flowers and Silence
- Cute Sushi Lunches
- Ten to Twenty
- Splinter
- Wife by Two Thousand


SNEAKER PIMPS

giovedì 24 dicembre 2009

Mansun "Attack Of The Grey Lantern"













E' di fronte a dischi così che si può esclamare "CAPOLAVORO TOTALE". Non credo di poter trovare altre parole per esprimere l'immensa esplosione di suoni, colori, immagini, riverberi, riferimenti che i Mansun crearono in questo album d'esordio. Così ricco che a risentirlo adesso ancora si scoprono cose nuove. Gli anni 80 al potere? E allora?? E' mai questo il problema?
Ridondanti, sinfonici, epici, romantici, aggressivi, oscuri, ballabili, visionari, malinconici,iper melodici, pensierosi....tutto e il contrario di tutto, così sono i Mansun in questo disco.
Mi ricordo che sopra il letto di camera mia avevo il poster gigante che raffigurava proprio la copertina di questo disco e mi sentivo il ragazzo più felice del mondo....i miei sonni erano vegliati dai Mansun!!
Invito il mio carissimo amico Aurelio, che credo essere uno dei massimi esperti in materia Mansun esistente sul pianeta terra, a lasciare una testimonianza dell'importanza e dell'impatto di questo disco nella storia della musica inglese. Ci conto Aurelio, perchè le mie parole non bastano...qui ci vuole il super esperto! (1997 EMI)

I Mansun, ignorati dalla stampa quando debuttarono nel 1995 con una serie di singoli, in particolare Take It Easy Chicken (SciFi-HiFi, 1995) e Skin Up Pin Up (SciFi-HiFi, 1995), divennero improvvisamente la "next big thing" del giorno quando Attack Of The Grey Lantern (Parlophone, 1997) svetto' al primo posto delle classifiche inglesi. Egg Shaped Fred, Stripped Vicar, l'hit Wide Open Space, She Makes My Nose Bleed (i quattro singoli che precedettero l'album) rievocano il disco-punk dei primi anni '80 con un pizzico di hip hop e Brit-pop. Meno pateticamente retro' della maggior parte delle "next big thing" del periodo, i Mansun caddero nella stessa trappola di musica generica per menti generiche. Canzoni come The Chad Who Love Me sono fatte per andare di moda per alcune settimane, e poi essere dimenticate per sempre. Il cantante Paul Draper ha l'inventiva di un uomo che urla al mercato del pesce. (Piero Scaruffi - http://www.scaruffi.com/)

Mansun whose records regularly go Top 10 in the UK, whose tours sell out effortlessly, but whose lead singer most people would be hard-pressed to name are impossible to figure out; one gets the impression they prefer things that way. In successive photo shoots, they've been known to appear as safety-pinned punks, eyelinered New Romantics and Adidas-clad lads just to mess with people's perceptions, and never feature in their own videos.
Led by singer Paul Draper and guitarist Dominic Chad, Mansun arrived in 1996 straight outta Chester. While their peers were worshipping at the altar of Lennon, Marriott and Weller, Mansun were name-checking such off-limits influences as Duran Duran, Talk Talk, the Associates, Simple Minds and ABC. It's this blatant disregard for indie credibility that allowed Mansun to make such an ambitious, astonishingly opulent debut album. Attack Of The Grey Lantern creates a lucid musical narcosis, a waking dream, all multi-layered guitars and spooky samples: the mewing of drowning cats, the tolling of submerged church bells, WW2 air raid sirens (smoothed and airbrushed to sound like whalesong), ghostly operatic tenors, oceanic strings, and the Fahrenheit 451 crackle of burning paper (money? books? bibles?). It's almost--whisper it--a CONCEPT album. The titular Grey Lantern is a superhero exposing the moral hypocrisy of smalltown England, as exemplified by the irresistible "Stripper Vicar", the true story of a female friend, the daughter of a church minister, who found S&M apparatus in her father's wardrobe. A fantastic debut. (Simon Price - http://www.amazon.co.uk/)

- Chad Who Loved Me
- Wide Open Space
- She Makes My Nose Bleed
- Naked Twister
- Take It Easy, Chicken
- You, Who Do You Hate?
- Mansun's Only Love Song
- Taxloss
- Disgusting
- Egg Shaped Fred
- Dark Mavis

MANSUN

Nyack "11 Track Player"



E il buon Claudio tira fuori dal cilindro i simpatici Nyack. Ottimo power pop, sporcato da chitarre soniche, dove con sapienza si sanno anche rallentare i toni e alzare il livello di melodia. Le coordinate sono quelle dell'indie anni 90 di matrice americana, ma i fantasmi di Teenage Fanclub o 18 Wheeler sono decisamente presenti, per non parlare di certi rimandi (magari appena accennati) al dream pop. Decisamente un disco e un gruppo da riscoprire. (1995 Echo)


- Lost In You
- Knumb
- I'm Your Star
- Heartsore
- Summersleeper
- I Remember Red
- Savage Smile
- Evergreen
- Sepia
- All That Shines
- Sunrise In My Head


NYACK

domenica 20 dicembre 2009

Kinesis "Handshakes For Bullets"











Una botta di energia, un pugno in faccia dritto e senza compromessi. Rock, ecco cosa sono. Sincero rock. Chiari, senza fronzoli e decisi. Le idee chiare non mancano, le chitarre taglienti nemmeno, la melodia non fa certo difetto, insomma...perchè i Kinesis non ci sono più?? (2003 Independiente)

Kinesis formed in a small town of Bolton , England . Soon after, Kinesis began to do the usual regiment of touring and making demos. But Lamacq on Radio 1 is who helped break the band to the masses. After that, countless listeners have said they sound like an early Manic Street Preachers, and here we are treated to their debut full length.
“One Way Mirror” leads off the album. The song starts with a blundering guitar riff. The song fucking rocks and with the jarring bass and brute vocals this song really starts us off with something awesome. “Billboard Beauty” is your usually song about how the media portrays people’s images. But they do it with such a pop appreciation. “Civilized Fury” is well civilized fury. Kinesis delivers solid messages behind a hard and forceful melody. “Conveyor Belt Destruction” starts with a fucking hard guitar riff and then breaks down into a softer tone. The song is reminiscent of a more modern pop rock song but they do it with more style and class than any of today’s agro rockers. “ (Comfortcomes - http://www.comfortcomes.com/)

"Kinesis are what it is to be young, doomed, kicking and screaming against a reckless world...a band to believe in." - 8/10, NME

"Kinesis may just be the best new band in the world." - 4.5/5 - The Fly

"...inspirational, something that reaches beyond the mundane." - 4/5, Kerrang!

"A furious, thrilling, vital debut album." - 5/5, Rockfeedback.com

"Sharp as a razor." - 4/5, Bang

"Handshakes for Bullets is a snapshot of potentially one of the most important bands of their generation." -4/5, The Observer


- One Way Mirror
- Billboard Beauty
- Civilised Fury
- Bloodstained Lips
- This Dead End
- Conveyor Belt Destruction
- ...And They Obey
- (Cling To Your) Innocence
- Forever Reeling
- Average American Corpse
- Everything Destroys Itself
- Generation Devoid Of Inspiration


KINESIS

Lush "Black Spring EP"





Eh, che meraviglia. Lo shoegazer vive di momenti, ecco perchè se nella lunghezza di un disco si rischi di perdersi, nella breve distanza di un Ep le cose vanno a gonfie vele. Ecco lo splendore di questo ep quindi, che presenta i Lush più che mai ispirati, angeli sonori che socchiudono le porte di un paradiso estatico e vibrante. Noi umili fedeli ringraziamo e aspiriamo alla redenzione. (1991 4AD)

- Nothing Natural
- Fallin’ In Love
- God’s Gift
- Monochrome

LUSH

Longpigs "Mobile Home"







Un disco da 10 e lode. Come scrisse Carlone Villa tanti anni fa...Mitico Ritorno. Fermi ai box i Longpigs mescolano le carte e se ne escono con un disco che spiazza chi già li conosceva, il loro guitar pop epico sembra scomparso, frammentato in mille soluzioni sonore nuove, più ricercate, attente, difficili. melodie non più immediate, ma che entrano sotto pelle piano, per poi esplodere. Vince la mente, non il cuore stavolta, ma la gente non capisce e non si inginocchia di fronte a tanto ben di Dio. Ingrati. (1999 Mother)

It could have all gone so wrong for the Longpigs. By 1999, they hadn't stepped into the public eye for over two years and relations with their previous drummer had reached such a low point that he'd glassed frontman Crispin Hunt in a Sheffield nightclub. In lean times, they needed to come back with something special; thankfully, comeback single "Blue Skies" was precisely that--a shrieking, soaring post-Britpop monster that eclipsed even the impassioned anthemics of their debut album, The Sun Is Often Out. Sadly, elsewhere Mobile Home tarries over Longpigs' favoured talking points--drugs, relationships, kissing with tongues--with increasingly diminishing returns. "Free Toy" might shimmer with the seedy glamour of yesteryear, but as Mobile Home rolls on, it seems that Longpigs' dirty passions are spent. "There is not yet a neat media label to describe you and me in this age", sings Hunt on "Gangsters". Uh, how about "past it"? (Louis Pattison - http://www.amazon.co.uk/)

Qualche anno fa con The sun is often out i Longpigs crearono amio avviso un piccolo capolavoro.
Ricordo quell'album con molto affetto e soprattutto ricordo le sonorità di certe canzoni. Erano le sonorità del mio cuore, quelle che più adoro. Guitar pop puro ed emozionale che non dimenticava gli Smiths ma che conviveva con le miscele esplosive dei Radiohead.
La voce di Crispian Hunt si arrampicava su vette così alte da fare a gara, quasi, con Jamie Harding dei mai dimenticati Marion. Ebbene, cosa rimane oggi di quella splendida atmosfera, cosa troviamo oggi in Mobile Home? Difficile rispondere ma ci proverò! Se è vero che cambiare è spesso sinonimo di coraggio è altrettanto vero che cambiare non corrisponde sempre a progredire. Infatti le "nuove" sonorità, più morbide e addolcite, dei Longpigs non mi convincono del tutto e seppur la produzione sia molto ben curata (c'è di mezzo anche quel volpone di Stephen Street) spesso le canzoni mi danno l'impressione di mancare di mordente e genuinità: qualità che furono proprio alla base del precedente album.
Belli sicuramente alcuni arpeggi e melodie ma, ripeto, la produzione generale mi pare troppo ridondante per non destare il sospetto di essere studiata a tavolino per puntare ad una diffusione maggiore del passato. Tutto questo per portare successo e pubblico nuovo mentre a me porta solo perplessità.
Forse un passo falso dunque questo Mobile Home per i Longpigs, o magari sono io che non sono entrato in sintonia con il mutamento musicale della band, avevo in testa dei piani ben precisi sui Longpigs ma come sempre si rivela i piani sono fatti per non essere realizzati. (Giordano Forcina - http://www.music-on-tnt.com)



- The Frank Sonata
- Blue Skies
- Gangsters
- Free Toy
- Baby Blue
- Dance Baby Dance
- Miss Believer
- I Lied I Love You
- Keep The Light Alight
- Speech Bubble
- Dog Is Dead
- Loud and Clear
- In The Snow


LONGPIGS

giovedì 17 dicembre 2009

Longpigs "The Sun Is Often Out"











Di fronte a dischi così è inutile spendere tante parole. In ginocchio signori e signore. Adoriamo la reliquia. Fondamentale. (1996 Mother)

- Lost Myself
- She Said
- Far
- On And On
- Happy Again
- All Hype
- Sally Dances
- Jesus Christ
- Dozen Wicked Words
- Elvis
- Over Our Bodies
- Sleep

LONGPIGS

mercoledì 16 dicembre 2009

Little Hell "Demonic Advisory Centre"





Un bel dischetto di rock metalloso con chitarre grintose ma dalle quali la melodia emerge sempre con dei bei cori e dei corettoni che ci fanno pogare per tutto il salotto. Cantato tagliente e rauco come piace a me. Rispettabili. (2002 Double Dragon Records)

Little Hell is a heavy band that create songs with a "bash my teeth in and I'll still be smiling" mentality. Yes, they may not write music that requires a PhD to get (song titles run like "Eat Shit President Bush" and "Love Makes You Come Hard"), but sometimes a little senseless fun is necessary to make music good. Their debut album, Demonic Advisory Centre, is sick, twisted and yet, it makes for some great aural entertainment. Filled with Kerrang-approved screams and riffs, DAC's heavy metal punk would be shelved nicely beside the likes of Queens of the Stone Age, Burning Brides, Faith No More and of course, Iron Maiden. Their aggression collides with their silly sense of humor on nearly every song, avoiding the clichéd tortured soul routine. While a lot of the songs come off as daftly catchy and riff-happy, this isn't another Andrew WK schtick. They aren't cheese, they're more likely to be committed for such subject matter as Satan's scalp and monkeys. Perfect for those times you just want to turn off the brain and enjoy some loud music, DAC takes so little out of you to enjoy it. Switch off, tune in and let the metal consume you. (Cam Lindsay - http://www.inmusicwetrust.com/)

- Welcome To The DAC
- Virus With Shoes
- Bottomless Pit
- Smart Kids Rock
- Hemotoxic
- Everybody's Cursed
- Hurting For Pleasure
- Use Your Brain
- Music Masochists
- Mouth Of The Bull
- Lose It Now
- You're All I've Got In This Lousy World


LITTLE HELL

Cast "Beetroot"



Più che un disco, una colossale boiata! (2001 Polydor)

Cast's fourth album starts off with a big pop bang and never lets up. "Desert Drought" is a whirling blast of horns, bongos, soulful backup vocals and John Power's reedy and wailing vocals that sounds a bit like what the Stone Roses may have done if they hadn't disappeared up their own arses. The song's message is one of positivity and hope and that feeling runs throughout the whole album especially on the sprawling and semi-epic "Jetstream". So does a sense of sonic adventurousness as each song sounds like a lot of time was spent on the small details like the surface noise on "Kingdom & Crowns", the cheesy wah-wah guitar on "I Never Can Say", the circus-like keyboards on "High Wire", the parping flute on the groovy "U-Turn". Beet Root is a really solid modern rock record; John Power's vocals are great and the songwriting is uniformly strong. Yet another case of a band doing their best work once no one cares about them anymore.If you were a fan of Cast and wrote them off you really should give them another chance. (Tim Sendra - http://www.allmusic.com/)

It's hard to believe now, but for one brief shining moment Cast were at the very centre of the pop zeitgeist. Back in the summer of 1995 their punchy brand of Liverpudlian beat music seemed to perfectly capture the spirit of Britpop. Since then, however, fashion has moved on and it's been one long slide into irrelevance for John Power and co. They acknowledge this themselves on their fourth album by adding flutes, echo effects and even hip-hop samples to their staple jangly guitar sound. Sadly it all falls rather flat and the neo-hippie lyrics don't stand up to repeated listening. To put it politely, an uninspired album. (Andrew Lynch - http://entertainment.ie/)



- Desert Drought
- Heal Me
- Curtains
- Kingdoms and Crowns
- Giving It All Away
- Lose Myself
- I Never Can Say
- High Wire
- Meditations
- Jetstream
- U-Turn
- Universal Grinding Wheel


CAST

martedì 15 dicembre 2009

The Sundays "Static & Silence"







Mi ricordo la prima volta che feci sentire alcuni pezzi di questo disco al buon Vanoli, ne fu incantato. Ecco, direi che questo è l'effetto che al terzo disco ancora riescono a fare i Sundays, incantare. Semplici melodie, più spostate verso il folk in questo lavoro che verso i classici echi "Smithsiani", che mantengono intatto quel senso di cristallino, di puro e di intimo: sensazioni che da sempre la musica del gruppo ha saputo trasmettere. Ancora una volta, chiudendo gli occhi, scompare il mondo attorno a noi. La splendida copertina, così evocativa e suggestiva rappresenta benissimo il senso del disco. Bravissimi. (1997 Geffen)

The Sundays’ career seems, with hindsight, to have been one of a band who may have been a little before their time. True enough, their sound may have seemed to have been mainly forged out of a melding of those two 80s icons, The Smiths and The Cocteau Twins – all fey vocals and flanged, jangling guitars – but it was a wilfully more commercial take on the formula. Their legacy in the UK may have faded somewhat, but their influence on US college-based rock is still felt today.
Time may not have been as kind to Static & Silence as many of its contemporaries: Unfortunately one can easily see why their poppy, lighthearted fare seems so suited to its frequent role as either atmospheric soundtracking to stateside teenage dramas (their music has been used in both Buffy and The OC) or as a signifier for shows wishing to convey ‘young, carefree and hip’ (this album’s “Another Flavour” was used as the theme tune to comedian David Baddiel’s show). But if this makes Satic & Silence sound shallow it’s only by association. It’s a lovely collection of summery pop rock, all balancing on Harriet Wheeler’s delightfully sparkling voice.
Recorded after a lengthy hiatus (self-enforced by Wheeler and co-founder Dave Gavurin’s break to have a child) Static... was a much chirpier collection than the previous album, Blind. Featuring their most successful single, the slightly funky (in a late 80s indie kind of way) ''Summertime'', it still played to all their strengths; filled with songs that are gossamer light (to the point of non-existence) but still hauntingly effective, such as the other best cut here; ''Monochrome'' (about watching the '69 moon landings).
Other highlights include the aforementioned “Another Flavour” and the whispy “Folk Song”. But Static & Silence should really be seen as a whole piece and as a completion to a fine run of three albums. Now on permanent break, who knows whether we’ll ever see more from this seminal band? (Chris Jones - http://www.bbc.co.uk/)

Dopo un lungo silenzio il gruppo si ripresenta con Static And Silence (Geffen, 1997) Il sound e` retrocesso a quello dei Fleetwood Mac di Rumours, con Wheeler nei panni di una roca Stevie Nicks.
Il "piu` grande complesso del mondo" (come titolo` un rispettabile periodico musicale della Gran Bretagna) per adesso non e` probabilmente ancora entrato neppure fra i primi mille. (Piero Scaruffi - http://www.scaruffi.com/)

- Summertime
- Homeward
- Folk Song
- She
- When I'm Thinking About You
- I Can't Wait
- Cry
- Another Flavour
- Leave This City
- Your Eyes
- Monochrome

THE SUNDAYS

Catherine Wheel "Adam and Eve"







Un gran bel disco a mio avviso, splendida mediazione tra le chitarre soniche e power e la creazione di atmosfere incantevoli. Un gruppo che decisamente meritava molto, ma molto di più!! (1997 Polygram)

Adam And Eve (Mercury, 1997) rappresenta un punto di partenza piu` che di arrivo. Il sound impiega arrangiamenti molto piu` ambiziosi, e questo potrebbe essere un punto di arrivo come per qualsiasi musicista che con il tempo diventa piu` smaliziato. Ma quegli arrangiamenti sono messi al servizio di un intento melodico, intimista e romantico che diverge nettamente dal passato. La produzione e` il mezzo di cui il gruppo ha bisogno per esprimere una nuova sensibilita`. L'album e` strutturato come un concept che fluisce da un brano all'altro senza mai perdere il filo del discorso (un lungo saggio sulla nostalgia).
Le carezze delle chitarre di Rob Dickinson e Brian Futter pennellano la delicatissima fiaba di Future Boy, e la ballad Phantom Of The American Mother, un po' REM nel suo alternarsi di acustico e elettrico, di bisbiglio e di urlo. Le tastiere (prima l'organo Hammond e poi l'orchestra sintetica) trascinano l'orgia sonora di Here Comes The Fat Controller (il loro ennesimo omaggio a Wish You Were Here dei Pink Floyd, ma anche alla Like A Rolling Stone di Dylan) e Goodbye, che ne e` la naturale appendice, ancor piu` melodrammatica e nostalgica.
Il gruppo rispolvera gli stereotipi degli shoegazer nel singolo Delicious, e recupera la grinta rock and roll dei dischi precedenti, con la caratteristica cadenza solida e l'avvitarsi delle chitarre attorno ad accordi boogie, in Broken Nose e Satellite. Per intensita` emotiva, e` uno dei loro dischi fondamentali. (Piero Scaruffi - http://www.scaruffi.com)

Catherine Wheel began, in the early '90s, as a moody, distortion-heavy "shoe gazer" band, but the English group's attention and ambition have since shifted to the stars. With its fourth LP, Adam and Eve, it eschews the guitar-heavy haze of previous efforts for appealing melodies and a sense of drama and musical sweep rarely found in '90s guitar rock. "Here Comes the Fat Controller" offers a beautiful melody filtered through a fuzz-toned fog; "Delicious" adds textured guitars and psychedelic sounds to power-pop energy; and "Future Boy" conveys naked emotion on a scale so grand that it would make Billy Corgan proud. Steering clear of art-rock excess, on Adam and Eve, Catherine Wheel deliver beautifully embellished pop with a sonic scope rarely seen since Pink Floyd's prime. (Robert Levine - http://www.rollingstone.com/)


- (Intro)
- Future Boy
- Delicious
- Broken Nose
- Phantom of the American Mother
- Ma Solituda
- Satellite
- Thunderbird
- Here Comes the Fat Controller
- Goodbye
- For Dreaming
- (Outro)

CATHERINE WHEEL

lunedì 14 dicembre 2009

Cast "Magic Hour"




Eh, che dire? Sempre più in salita la strada del povero John e sempre meno idee. Giunti al terzo disco i Cast provano a giocare carte nuove, ma il piatto piange e anche un pò gli ascoltatori, purtroppo. (1999 Polydor)

“Era fondamentale che la band girasse pagina”, dice John Power, il leader della band, riguardo a questo terzo, sofferto album. Si sbaglia di grosso John. Si sbaglia e, soprattutto, dispiace vederlo cadere nel tranello dei trend dettati dalla onnivora stampa inglese, sempre alla ricerca di nuove facce da sbattere sulle copertine di Melody e NME, sempre snob verso ciò che fa parte del passato. E’ un tranello che ha portato John e i suoi compagni, con la paranoia di ripetersi e di “suonare britpop”, a lasciare da parte tutti quei punti fermi che avevano reso “All change” un gran disco (la psichedelia, il modismo, le melodie pop alla Beatles) e ad imbracciare sonorità che non gli appartengono. Il risultato? Sicuramente “magic hour” non è, come la annunciano i Cast, un’ora di magia. Gli sforzi per abbandonare la pop song tradizionale sono, appunto, troppo “forzati”. Si notano fin dall’inizio, fin da “Beat Mama”, un imbarazzante scivolone in territori glam rock (alla Status Quo) che fa rimpiangere il peggior britpop. Subito dopo è la volta di “Compared to you”, altro brano lontano dai punti di riferimento del gruppo, che, anziché pensare pop, tira in ballo i Led Zeppelin. Un disastro, verrebbe da pensare dopo questi due brani. Fortunatamente John imbrocca prima una bella ballata psichedelica in odore di shoegazer (con “She falls”). Poi arrivano le sfuriate alla Who (nella versione psichedelia, in “Dreamer”, e in quella più rockettara di “Higher”). E poi? Poi nient’altro. Un rincorrere continuamente gli altri (i Verve, gli Oasis), abbondando in arrangiamenti d’archi (che, sia pur curati da un maestro degli archi come David Arnold, risultano essere molto spesso ridondanti) e in riff inutili. Insomma, l’impressione è che John Power abbia perso la vena creativa e, soprattutto, abbia dimenticato come si fa a scrivere una semplice pop song. (http://www.rockol.it/)


- Beat Mama
- Compared to You
- She Falls
- Dreamer
- Magic Hour
- Company Man
- Alien
- Higher
- Chasing the Day
- Feeling Remains
- Burn the Light
- Hideaway


CAST

domenica 13 dicembre 2009

Crashland "Glued"



Un colpo al cerchio ed uno alla botte. Provano a fare un pò di tutto i ragazzi in questo esordio e come sempre i metri di riferimento si sprecano. Che poi il tutto suoni già sentito non è una meraviglia, ma devo dire che non è neanche male il prodotto finito, che si muove su un guitar pop rock che ogni tanto va a nozze con un punkettino di discreto livello. Nelle recensioni i termini di paragone erano spesso i Supergrass, ma anche i Placebo o gli Stereophonics a dire il vero e pure gli Weezer o i primi Radiohead....insomma, un bel minestrone!! Onesto disco, di un gruppo onesto, che onestamente se nè già andato. (2000 Independiente)

Three blokes, like a drink--you know right where you're going with Bristol's Crashland, and it's a route that takes you past all the familiar old sights. Glued recalls the three-chord punk rattle of the Buzzcocks, the spunky pop anthems of early Supergrass and the raucous stagger of fondly remembered Welsh pub-rockers 60ft Dolls--but while it's an album that's as musically accomplished as reasonably expected from a debut, there is precious little substance here to elevate Glued beyond the crop of Britpop also-rans. Sure, "Modern Animal" and "New Perfume" are as rough and ready as a council estate kick-about, and the closing "We're On Fire" offers a fine, sentimental Dylan-esque closer, but when you are waiting for Crashland to reveal a hitherto unseen dimension--sensitivity, eloquence, sense of humour--the best that frontman Alex Troupe can offer is drivelsome sub-Gallagher spot-the-next-rhyme games: "It was never my attention/But now you come to mention/I adore you/If I ignore you/ You know I'd do anything for you". Time may refine and reshape their dull, blunt edge, but too often, Glued finds Crashland sitting in the gutter looking down at the gutter. (Louis Pattison - http://www.amazon.co.uk)

Crashland are a three piece from Bristol who got together in late '97. They have recently toured the UK with Symposium and Toploader and have upcoming dates in November and December with Reef. 'Glued' is the band's debut album and is twelve tracks of adrenaline-fueled power pop which is all a little predictable, but enjoyable nonetheless. Indie they are, with obvious reference points being the like of Stereophonics and Placebo.
Cover of Crashland's album 'Glued'The current single and first track 'Modern Animal' rings of the Pixies, with plenty of hooks and a catchy chorus. Unfortunately most of what follows is very similar in style to the opener. The majority of the tunes stick to the tried and tested quiet verse / loud chorus format and, while they are good tracks individually, as a collection they seem a little monochrome. There is nothing off the beaten track and no risks taken. It makes for a welcome break when the songs do differ a little - 'Submission' and 'Little Dreams' are two minute punky blasts. Really though, the reason they are welcome is only because they are a little different to the tracks before them, not because they are great songs. There are also a couple of quieter moments also, namely 'Swinger' and 'We're on Fire'. On these tracks the vocals are clearer and guitars less frantic, but the songs don't really go anywhere.
Crashland seem to be trying to write great pop songs but they haven't written that killer tune yet. A fairly mediocre debut album, decent enough but not terribly exciting. (Niamh Grimes - http://www.cluas.com/)

- Modern Animal
- New Perfume
- Lemonade
- The Sun In My Eyes
- Standard Love Affair
- Collide Again
- Submission
- Glued
- Swinger
- Little Dreams
- Waiting For Someone
- We're On Fire

CRASHLAND

mercoledì 9 dicembre 2009

The Supernaturals "It Doesn't Matter Anymore"



Un pò retrò, un pò Beatles, un (bel) pò di Pop acqua e sapone, qualche chitarra rock, melodie semplici semplici, il piano che fa le sue marcette pop, un pò di sole e un pò di quella pioggerellina che fa tanto bene quando si muore dal caldo....insomma, un disco che ci porta il sorriso, niente di più, niente di meno. Ma in fin dei conti non è questo lo scopo del pop? (1997 Food)


- Please Be Gentle With Me
- Smile
- Glimpse Of The Light
- Lazy Lover
- Love Has Passed Away
- Dung Beetle
- Stammer
- I Don't Think So
- Pie In The Sky
- The Day Before Yesterday's Man
- Prepare To Land
- Trees


THE SUPERNATURALS

The Boo Radleys "I Hang Suspended"





Un magnifico singolo tratto da un magnifico album, e potrei chiudere così. Fantastici come sempre i Boo piazzano anche 3 b-sides che più visionarie non si può. Caleidoscopio di suoni e di colori. (1993 Creation)

- I Hang Suspended
- Rodney King (St Etienne Re-Mix)
- As Bound A Tomorrow
- I Will Always Ask You Where You've Been Even Though I Know The Answer


THE BOO RADLYES

domenica 6 dicembre 2009

18 Wheeler "The Revealer"



Penavo proprio a quanto bello sia il primo disco degli 18 Wheeler, lo dimostrano i mganifici singoli estratti da questo lavoro. Anche in questo caso grande pezzo e grande melodia e B-sides che vanno sempre a nozze con un pop dal retrogusto vagamente country e solare. Adorabili! (1994 Creation)


- The Revealer
- I Won't Let You Down
- Huggy Bear
- Suncrush (Demo)

18 WHEELER

18 Wheeler "Suncrush"



Ed è tripudio. Partiamo dalle B-sides, vagamente sapore country per Yer Eyes, Dinosaur Jr per la traccia 3 e commozione pianistica nell'ultimo pezzo, ma è il singolo che ci fa letteralmente gridare al miracolo. Il pezzo pop perfetto. Da rimanere senza parole per l'incanto. (1993 Creation)

- Suncrush
- Yer Eyes
- Falling Out Of Love
- Some Things Last A Long Time

18 WHEELER

18 Wheeler "Nature Girl"



Beh, un pezzo commovente e da antologia per i nostri amati 18. Da ascoltare con gli occhi chiusi e il paradiso del pop sarà a portata di mano! (1993 August)

- Nature Girl
- Pillowfight
- Golden Candles

18 WHEELER

venerdì 4 dicembre 2009

Catatonia "Crai EP"







Della serie "come eravamo" e pure..."come cantavamo". Raccolta dei primi ep del gruppo e parecchie canzoni sono cantate nella lingua natale della splendida Cerys.
Il gruppo muove qui i suoi primi passi e lo fa con grazia e gentilezza, un potenziale ancora tuto da scoprire, ma che già si intravede! (1999 Crai)



- For Tinkerbell
- New Musical Heights
- Dimbran
- Sweet Catatonia
- Gyda Gwen/New Mercurial Heights [Welsh Mix]
- Hooked
- Fall Beside Her
- Difrycheulyd (Snail Ambition)


CATATONIA

18 Wheeler "Year Zero"





Che le cose potessero cambiare lo si intuiva già dal secondo disco dei ragazzi, ma che cambiasserò così tanto proprio no. E se il singolo Stay ce li mostra sempre attenti alla melodia e alla ballata il resto del disco è infarcito di battute dance e di un tentativo (forse non troppo riuscito) di modernizzare il loro suono. E' il disco che meno apprezzo dei Wheeler. Mi ricordo come me ne parlò Claudio, sempre attento a trovare le parole giuste per non ferire i suoi idoli....Mah, sono un pò cambiati, diciamo che sono un pò peggiorati. Eroico. (1997 Creation)

- The Hours And The Times
- Crabs
- Stay
- Grease
- Prozac Beats
- The Ballad Of Paul Verlaine
- Everything's Dead
- Retard
- Blue Eyed Son
- Den Dagen, Den Sorgen
- Planesong


18 WHEELER

giovedì 3 dicembre 2009

18 Wheeler "Kum Back"



Singoletto per i nostri amati 18 Wheeler, qui ancora nel periodo di devozione massima per i Teenage Fanclub. Kum Back è una cavalcata power pop ai mille all'ora con assoli che si rincorrono 1 dietro all'altro, esaltante. B-sides nella media. (1994 Creation Records)

- Kum Back
- Pots Of Tea
- Alness Girls
- Pond Life

18 Wheeler

Blind Mr. Jones "Stereo Musicale"



Ringrazio il buon Claudio che tanti anni fa mi parlò dei cari Blind Mr Jones, shoegazer visionari che si distinguevano fra i tanti perl'uso del flauto, almeno in questo primo disco. Tra Ride, Revolver e dei Cure in paradiso un disco che merita grande attenzione. (1992 Manifesto Records)

Fra i tanti imitatori di Ride si distinguono i Blind Mr Jones, che forse superano anche i maestri nei singoli Crazy Jazz e Eyes Wide e soprattutto sull'album del 1992, Stereo Musicale (Cherry Red).
Il disco e` per meta` solo strumentale, impostato sul singolare fraseggio fra un basso ipnotico e versatile, chitarre usate in contrappunto come se fossero violini e gli intrepidi assoli del flauto di Jon Tegner. Il sound a meta` strada fra rock progressivo e psichedelico, fra Ozric Tentacles (soprattutto negli impasti armonici) e Ride (soprattutto nel registro del cantante Will Teversham e nelle sue armonie vocali con il chitarrista Richie Moore) e` buono tanto per canzoncine da shoegazer come Dolores quanto per vignette atmosferiche come Lonesome Boatman. (Piero Scaruffi - http://www.scaruffi.com/)

- Sisters
- Spooky Vibes
- Regular Disease
- Small Caravans
- Flying With Lux
- Henna and Swayed
- Lonesome Boatmen
- Unforgettable Waltz
- Going on Cold
- Spook Easy
- One Watt Above Darkness
- Dolores
- Against the Glass


BLIND MR JONES

Bis "Intendo"



Compilation di b-sides e rarità per i 3 giovanissimi alfieri del Teen C Power. Adorabili come sempre, anche in questo disco che ovviamente è raccomandato ai veri completisti del gruppo. (1998 Grand Royal Records)

Intendo dei Bis è un album puramente commerciale. Dato alle stampe per far fronte alla grande e inaspettata massa di fan nati col precedente New Transistor Heroes, Intendo è una raccolta di demo, bozze e scarti del periodo e degli esordi. Non c'è da meravigliarsi quindi della pochezza del disco e della sua vacuità, è un'operazione di marketing e prendendola da questo punto e fatte le dovute precisazioni andiamo alla recensione. Intendo nulla aggiunge e nulla toglie a quanto detto fin ora dalla band, dal disco si può già capire che il gruppo, seppur agli inizi, aveva le idee molto chiare sul suo suono e anche sul suo modo di porsi, un po' strafottente e ironico nei confronti del pubblico (alcune canzoncine sono da cartoons, e ci vuole una bella faccia ad andare in giro con cose di questo tipo quando, nel 98, tutti si impegnavano in una svolta) e totalmente menefreghista nei confronti del mercato che ha trovato in loro dei nuovi genietti del pop da fast food. Cosa veramente abbia trovato poi il mercato in loro è mistero, come mistero è ciò che affascina così tanto i fans dei Bis. Chissa se in questo album , tra le solite canzoncine proto punk, spunti simil dance (Statement of Intent, la più valida) e filostrocche alla distorsione avranno trovato ancora di che sfamarsi o avranno scoperto una band che ha ancora molto da crescere (troppo rispetto alla fama che si è fatta). (Francesco Sciarrone - http://www.rocklab.it/)

Bis would make a great Saturday-morning cartoon. The young protagonists Manda, Sci-Fi, and Disco would roam the galaxy, fending off boring, stupid, old-people music and cruising for fresh beats from friendly alien types. The singles collection Intendo is a great way to become acquainted with these Scottish superheroes. If you're not an obsessive singles collector, you probably missed the chance to buy the Japan-only or limited editions that these songs are culled from. "Hi-fi, lo-fi, sci-fi, my-fi" is their mantra, and you'll find it all, from the computer-geeky "Clockwork Punk" to the angry grrrl power in "I'll Get You Back." Dance-punk sounds like a weird combination, but Bis reminds us that disco is the first part of discordant. (Lois Maffeo - http://www.amazon.com/)


- Grand Royal with Cheese (Intro)
- Statement of Intent
- Girl Star
- Clockwork Punk
- Famous [Demo Version]
- Ninja Hi Skool
- Kid Cut [Demo Version]
- Automatic Freestyle
- I'll Get You Back
- Cookie Cutter Kid/Grand Royal With Cheese (Outro)


BIS

martedì 1 dicembre 2009

Bennet "Supernatural"



Il trionfo dell'onestà pop, della semplicità, del fare le cose fatte bene con passione, gusto, umiltà e voglia di far muovere il piedino dell'ascoltatore. le melodie dei Bennet potrebbero ricordare tanti di quei gruppi che finiamo domani a dirli tutti, ma mi piacciono. Mi piacciono perchè sono un gruppo sincero. E nel pop, questa sana sincerità la gradisco davvero. (1996 Roadrunner)



- Norway Wife
- If You Met Me, Then You'd Like Me
- Only Thirty
- Jordan Bennet
- Cha Cha Charlie
- I Hate My Family
- Wanker
- Colossal Man
- Young, Free & Sorry
- Sandman
- Mum's Gone to Iceland
- Someone Always Gets There First
- Mockney Rebel
- Kiss the Radio
- Never Ending Blue/Secret Track


BENNET

lunedì 30 novembre 2009

3 Colours Red "Revolt"







Altro bel dischetto per i nostri power pop punk inglesi. A dire il vero qui c'è meno punk e magari 1 occhio in più per un certo tipo di hard rock melodico (anche molto melodico!), con qualche ballata di notevole impatto, com'è giusto che sia. Perchè anche i rockers hanno un cuore tenero! (1999 Creation)

After the success of their debut, 3 Colours Red returned with the stylistically similar Revolt, an album that managed to gain moderate commercial success on both sides of the Atlantic thanks to the minor U.S. hit, "Beautiful Day." Revolt isn't much of a departure from the band's debut album, however, and it also isn't a very compelling listen. 3 Colours Red is essentially a punk band, but unlike other mainstream punk contemporaries like Green Day or the Offspring, Britain's 3 Colours Red don't have much of a sense of humor or an individual personality. The majority of Revolt rattles on at breakneck speed without ever leaving much of an impression. When the band does shine, however, its in their pop songs. The string-laden power ballad, "Beautiful Day," is a centerpiece here, as are catchy rockers like "Back to the City" and "Pirouette." On songs like these (there are a handful of genuine pop songs on the album), 3 Colours Red truly shines, and in that respect, Revolt works as a showcase for what this band could become. (Jason Damas, All Music Guide)


- This Is My Time
- Pirouette
- Beautiful Day
- Song On The Radio
- Calling To The Outside
- Intermission
- Paralyse
- Cancel The Exhibition
- Paranoid People
- Back To The City
- Be Myself
- Age Of Madness


3 COLOURS RED

venerdì 27 novembre 2009

3 Colours Red "Pure"











Bello, bello, bello. Un disco che ancora adesso riascolto con piacere. Grinta hard/punk rock. Uscivano per Creation, ma prima avevano inciso anche per la Fierce Panda, e le idee erano proprio chiare. Tosti, sonici ma con l'anima melodica che sapeva emergere. Un gruppo davvero valido. (1997 Creation)

- Pure
- This Is My Hollywood
- Nerve Gas
- Nuclear Holiday
- Copper Girl
- Sixty Mile Smile
- Sunny in England
- Alright Ma
- Mental Blocks
- Fit Boy + Faint Girl
- Halfway up the Downs
- Hateshick
- Love's Cradle
- Aniseed


3 COLOURS RED

giovedì 26 novembre 2009

Addict "Stones"





Qui mi commuovo. 1998 esce questo disco e il mio collega d'appartamento universitario, il buon Fabri, se ne innamora. (Hard) rock molto melodico, una buona via di congiunzione tra suoni americani alla Stone Temple Pilots o primi Pearl Jam e i britannici Radiohead, ma quelli degli esordi, ovviamente. E visto che in casa andavano 24 ore su 24 ecco che pure io cado nel Tunnel. Incredibile ma vero, gli Addict vengono in Italia per un tour. E così andiamo a vederli al Binario Zero. La serata fu memorabile e Fabri aveva pure la febbre! Un pomeriggio con loro nel backstage e a vedere le prove e poi un concerto splendido e commovente che ci hanno praticamente dedicato (storia Teenage Angel con loro che aspettavano di sentirci cantare!), anche perchè eravamo si e no in 15 persone. Pazzesco. Ho ancora un sacco di foto di quella serata indimenticabile e postare adesso questo disco mi ha messo addosso tanta nostalgia. Questo era il loro esordio. (1998 V2)


- Dust
- Monster Side
- All Change
- Red Bird
- Heavy
- Teenage Angel
- Caned
- Underneath
- Nobody Knows
- Stones
- Black Hole
- Abused


ADDICT

martedì 24 novembre 2009

The Candyskins "Sunday Morning Fever"



A scuola di pop. Giuro ma in questo disco ci sento dentro di tutto, un compendio magnifico di quello che era il brit pop degli anni 90, dai Rialto, ai Thurman, ai Mantaray, Teenage Fanclub...si, tutto già sentito, e allora? Chitarre che veicolano melodie travolgenti, gentilezze acustiche, arpeggi, dolcezza e rumorosità. Un disco di vero e onestissimo Brit Pop! (1997 Ultimate Records)

Returning to indie status after a failed effort for Geffen, the Candyskins recorded the charming Sunday Morning Fever. Like the group's previous two albums, the record is filled with alternately crunching and ringing guitar hooks and pretty melodies, but it is hampered by undistinguished and uneven songwriting, as well as predictable melodies. Nevertheless, the album has a raw, infectious energy that makes it a return to form of sorts for the Candyskins. (Stephen Thomas Erlewine - All Music Guide)


- Mrs Hoover
- 24 Hours (u.s.e.d.)
- Car Crash
- Monday Morning
- Get On
- Europe & Japan
- Hang Myself on You
- Disco Hell
- Circles
- Face The Day
- D.r.u.n.k.
- No No No
- Help Me
- In My Hair

THE CANDYSKINS

The Candyskins "Death Of A Minor T.V. Celebrity"





Il mondo del pop ha sempre bisogno di eroi sfortunati, di onestissimi lavoratori che continuano a sfornare ottimi album, grandi melodie, pregevolissimi lavori, ma chissà perchè il successo, i titoloni dei giornali, le groupies più calde, vannosempre ad altri gruppi. Beh, a me i Candyskins hanno sempre dato questa impressione. Bravissimi nel loro power pop, chitarre e melodie, capaci di farti saltare man anche di farti ocmmuove con grandi ballate, eppure mai troppo lodati, considerati e ricordati come avrebbero meritato. Beh, sono qui per questo! (1998 Velvet Records)


On their fourth album, and first American release in five years, the Candyskins deliver driven pop melodies that are fun to sing along with, but also portray a consistent theme throughout the eleven original tracks. Easily labeled as "Brit Pop," this Oxford, England quintet plays sweet, energetic power-pop with a British feel.
Leading off with "Feed It," their first single, which is gaining good-sized airplay across the nation, this upbeat, infectious number showers you with sing-along lines and inspirational lyrics. However, its inspiration is less than happy. Written after the Heaven's Gate incident, the pop rock feel of the song hardly even hints at the tragic event. It just goes to show the songwriting sophistication and ideas that help make this (and every) song one that is open to the listeners' translation, regardless of what event 'actually' inspired the lyrics.
Quieting down a bit, and leaving the amped-up hooks at the door, the title track shows the band in a new light. Led by an acoustic guitar and piano, the rhythm section softly walks along with the rest of the band. The vocals are the main draw, releasing serious ideas with a first hand perspective. Even as Nick Cope (lead vocals) is seemingly singing about a man who tied helium balloons to his lawn chair for attention, the lyrics hint at other possibilities and emotions. Several angles possible, none being the 'right' way to look at the song, they wrap you up as you come up with your own interpretations.
Even though they can get a lot of feeling into a toned down, soft number, the fun lies in their upbeat, jumpy pop melodies. And, that's exactly what "Somewhere Under London" will bring to you. More hooks, more guitar driven steam, and a bouncy rhythm section help propel this pop-charged ditty to the front of your mind. Mixing in soft spots, they draw you in and then step on the distortion pedals -- cranking out some heavy hooks.
Always mixing a serious message under the happy hooks, "Teenage Suicide" deals with controversy, heavy-handed emotions, and cries for help right from the get go. Arguably the emotional high of the album, and near the top when it comes to infectious-ness, the Candyskins have no problem wrapping you up as the story unfolds. "And everybody wants to hide, from a teenage suicide. And everybody wants a ride, from the teenage suicide," the lyrics that you'll find yourself singing along with during the chorus, keep you clinging to hope that the story will turn out positive. Mixed with unforgettable hooks, a potent mix of emotions and melodies drill this song right to your heart.
Ending with "Going Nowhere," the band finishes off with spacey, Brit-Pop number that, although not nearly as infectious as some of the high points on this album, helps finish off any lose ends and brings the album to a comfortable stop.
Previously not a fan of Brit-Pop, The Candyskins have broken any stereotypes I previously had on the genre. Delicious melodies, sharp images, and realism make their passionate pop songs come to life. Gone for five years, the wait seems to have been worth it. I'll give this disc an A-. (Alex Steininger - http://www.inmusicwetrust.com/)



Do you like Oasis?
Well . . . do you?
That’s all you have to ask yourself. The success of Oasis has produced many sound-alikes, The Candyskins being one of the best of them.
But don’t think this means The Candyskins are a completely unoriginal band with no sense of identity. There are points within their new album, Death of a Minor TV Celebrity, that they achieve a sense of themselves. Take, for example, the name of the album. It’s creative. . . that would be a start, right?
Okay, maybe that’s a bit harsh. This probably stems from my unbridled hate for Oasis (please don’t throw anything at me or send me hate mail, all you die-hard groupies) and I can’t stand unoriginality (can anyone tell the difference between the song "All For You" by Sister Hazel and any Blues Traveler song? Seriously). So many Brit-pop bands fall into this rut. But there is light at the end of this tunnel. Remember Radiohead’s Pablo Honey? They broke out of their "Pixie sound-alike" rut and have achieved sounds beyond anyone’s wildest dreams. See? If fellow Oxfordite Thom Yorke and the crew can. . .
One great aspect of this album is it’s emotion. Unlike other recordings, these lyrics and wafty vocals drip with emotion and sincerity (a good example of this is their song "Songbird"). The song "Feed It" sounds especially like Oasis on the vocals, but the lyrics ("If you want it / you’ve got / you feed it / you love it / you say that / you need it, etc.) are catchy and hip-- everybody loves a good song to sing along to. (WARNING: Don’t get confused! The very first note of the song sounds like "Margaritaville" by Jimmy Buffet.)
"Death of a Minor TV Celebrity" is a very promising ballad, and probably one of the most promising tracks on the album. The vocals are appropriately reminiscent of Oasis (not a blatant copy), and the back-up piano work is beautiful and flowing.
So, are you?
An Oasis fan, I mean?
My advice? Watch for the Candyskins in the future. They plan to tour the US soon, and the live shows are supposed to be their forte. Their present work looks very promising, so any future albums will certainly be welcome.
Hey, who knows how long Oasis is going to last? (Tiffany Funk - http://www.music-critic.com/)

- Feed It
- It's a Sign
- Death of a Minor TV Celebrity
- Loser Friendly
- Swimming Pool
- Somewhere Under London
- A Song
- Songbird
- Teenage Suicide
- Friday Night, Saturday Morning
- Going Nowhere

THE CANDYSKINS

domenica 22 novembre 2009

Menswear "Nuisance"














Signori e signore....IL BRIT POP!!!....nonostante quello che dice Scaruffi!!! (1995 Laurel)


I Menswear furono l'ennesimo gruppo britannico degli anni '90 a balzare in prima pagina prima ancora di aver firmato un contratto discografico. Questa volta la novita` stava nel rispolverare (per la millesima volta) la civilta` mod, e nelle pose (ancor meno originali) del leader Johnny Dean.
I singoli I'll Manage Somehow (Laurel), un'indegna scopiazzatura di Backwater dei Meat Puppets, e Daydreamer, una versione per scolaretti dell'idea di Line Up degli Elastica che era a sua volta rubata ai Wire, si dimenticano dopo cinque minuti, tanto sono familiari i riff e i ritornelli su cui poggiano, e l'album Nuisance (Laurel, 1995) fa acqua da tutte le parti, sia che imiti i Monkees (Little Miss Pinpoint Eyes) sia che imiti gli Small Faces (Around You Again). Tracce dei Cream in 125 West 3rd Street, di David Bowie in Stardust e del soul "bianco" in Hollywood Girl non bastano a trasformare un pezzo inerte di materia in arte. (Piero Scaruffi - http://www.scaruffi.com/)

Perhaps Menswear was always destined to be a footnote in pop history, a product of the heady good times of London in 1994 and 1995. Reportedly signed after only three shows, the band was never given the chance to fully develop before they recorded their debut album, Nuisance. At the time of their first single, they appropriated the sound of Blur and the style of Pulp; by the time Nuisance was released, they also incorporated the sound of Elastica and Oasis, making the band a virtual Cliff Notes of Brit-pop. Naturally, Menswear doesn't quite have the skills or panache of any of their idols, but that doesn't mean they are lacking in charm. Like Oasis and Blur, Menswear appropriates sections of pop history, claiming them as their own. However, they aren't half the songwriters that Noel Gallagher and Damon Albarn are, which means many of their ideas are never developed. Nevertheless, when they assimilate them fully -- like the intoxicating rush of "Around You Again" or the sweeping ballad "Being Brave," which lifts the intro to Pink Floyd's "Comfortably Numb" -- the band is an undeniable guilty pleasure. When pressed, the 'swear can come up with irresistably infectious pop gems, from the frazzled Monkees pop of "Sleeping In" to the flat-out great single "Daydreamer," which sounds more like Wire than Elastica, only funnier, even if it may be unintentional. Even funnier are Johnny Dean's lyrics, from the groupie saga of "125 West 3rd Street" to "Stardust," a silly attack on Primal Scream's Bobby Gillespie. In all, Nuisance is the perfect product from a band that is better known for being seen than being heard. (Stephen Thomas Erlewine - All Music Guide)

- 125 West 3rd Street
- I'll Manage Somehow
- Sleeping In
- Little Miss Pinpoint Eyes
- Daydreamer
- Hollywood Girl
- Being Brave
- Around You Again
- One
- Stardust
- Piece Of Me
- Stardust (reprise)



MENSWEAR