Sunday, 31 January 2010

Review 31/01/10- The Joe Public "Take It Back"


Band Name: The Joe Public

CD Title: Take It Back

Press Pack Included: Yes

Review: Starting with the press pack, it was short but included all of the essential information. The reviews section contained some famous names which will be a tipping point in any negotiations in the future.

The demo sent through was only a single track demo, but this was an unreleased mix of the lead off track of their next EP. “Take It Back” is a typical new indie style song, with a chugging bass line and heavy guitars restrained in the overall mix. The vocals are clear and concise which means that after a few listens we even began to know the words, the sign of a great songwriter. The song may have only been 4 minutes in length but included dynamic changes, which put us very much in mind of Muse.

While this is a good track, it lacks a cutting edge to distinguish it from quite alot of the other bands out there at the current time. We would have liked to have heard more which could have demonstrated this, but because only one track came through, we will make sure to check The Joe Public in future and keep up to date with progress. We would however have preferred to hear some more.

Review 31/01/10- Rockburn "Rockburn"


Band Name: Rockburn

CD Title: Rockburn

Press Pack Included: Yes

Review: First off, the press pack included with this CD is very concise and includes all the information needed to make easy contact with the band. The review page is very enlightening, giving us a brief overview of how they’re often labelled. Some of the information regarding where their songs were being played demonstrated their capabilities (Anfield being a particular highlight) and their reach. The photos included showed them both staged and in the middle of performing, making it easy to see how album inserts and promo material would look. The sticker was a much appreciated personal touch.

The demo itself immediately got us dancing, which is a fantastic sign when it comes to a band who are heavily connected with their 70’s blues rock. “Red Dress” had some issues with the sound quality (there seemed to be a muffled hiss throughout-this could be a reproduction issue) but nothing that could not be ignored. The first 2 tracks were typical blues rock stompers with catchy riffs and drum beats. The vocals were raspy and well executed, putting us in mind of a young Robert Plant (Led Zeppelin I/II era) and everything was mixed in equal measure. The final track of the demo “The Last Stop” demonstrated a new dynamic, still classic blues but with country touches, again all mixed beautifully. Despite this being an under-represented genre in the modern alternative rock scene (The White Stripes being the flag carriers for the genre) this still has a sense of the new about it, no bad thing in itself. A modern twist on something as well regarded as 70’s blues rock shows how Rockburn have been creative in their approach.

The presentation of the disc itself could have been a little better, maybe including rough artwork, but overall this is a cracking little demo with a band who already have high expectations with airplay at Parkhead & Anfield (Celtic & Liverpool FC respectively) and thoroughly deserve more.

Review 31/01/10- Al Baker & The Dole Queue "Demo 2008"


Band Name: Al Baker & The Dole Queue

CD Title: Demo 2008

Press Pack Included: Yes

Review: To start with, very impressive press pack. Well written and well presented, including pictures of the band and contact details. Also gave overview of upcoming dates and of what was on the demo, along with coining the genre “Troubacore” which is a stroke of genius!

The demo itself is well recorded and well constructed, Baker and his Dole Queue really showing what they’re worth in terms of raucous energy and spirit, much (and I’m sure they’re heard this) in the Frank Turner/early Jonah Matranga spirit along with more Flogging Molly than Dropkick Murphys. Even with the premise of the first song here “Thank God I’m An Atheist” being about a troubled relationship between a Christian and Atheist, Al Baker et al. don’t try and dilute their sound or raw energy. The vocal interplay between Al and Ali is beautifully executed and well balanced in what could be a very cluttered mix, another factor they avoid with ease. Despite earlier praise for the band not diluting their sound, with an album on the horizon, the band could have included something a little slower, a style which is only briefly eluded to in the intro of “I Won’t Forget You.”

All in all though, a brilliant little package and it’s more than enough to look out for them on tour and get your hands on Al’s solo debut “On The Use Of Jack Boots.”


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