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David Ellefson (Megadeth) Bass Solos

26 Oct

Dave Mustaine: “Holaaaaaaa Santiagooooo!”  😉


Band of the Week: Morning Smoke

25 Nov

Brighton noise-pop quartet Morning Smoke are set to release their third single, ‘Soft Decay’ through Cannibal Hymns on 4th December.

The band have released an EP, ‘In Euphoria’ and two singles ‘Hunger’ and ‘Unknown’, since forming in 2013, and already gained support from Radio 1 and XFM. Still, ‘Soft Decay’ might be their most impressive statement yet. Underpinned by Isaac Ide and Christopher Shaw’s inventive bass and drums, Milo McNulty and Max Wright wring thick fogs of distortion from their guitars, as McNulty passionately howls his way through the track.

Recorded by Rory Atwell, who has previously worked with Parma Violets, The Vaccines and Yuck, ‘Soft Decay’ is the kind of infectious, disaffected anthem you thought bands had stopped writing since the nineties/

Listen here:

Live Review: Jaguar

1 Jan

Venue: Old Blue Last, London.

Date: 29th December 2012.

Image: Crash Alternative Music Blog

Image: Crash Alternative Music Blog

With the addition of new bassist Simon Patel in 2006, the newly-reformed Jaguar seemed to have  had a somewhat sporadic return. They’ve played just a handful of venues and festivals over the years, including the Astoria London and Thrash ‘ Till Death festival in Germany, but beyond this their presence has been muted ever since the band folded with their second album This Time (1984). Despite reforming and remoulding several times, they have never been able to replicate the success of their earliest days.

It must have been quite a surprise to long-time Jaguar fans, then, to see the band live in Shoreditch. Musically, it was very easy to see the appeal. Playing several numbers from the band’s original album ‘Power Games’, as well as some very good new material (‘No Lies’, ‘War Machine’) the composition was classic heavy-metal. Lead singer Jamie Manton was interacting and talking with the packed room as if he was having a beer down the local.  The devoted crowd must have loved him because by the end of the set, he was crowd-surfing around the room. There’s not much about Jaguar on the web at the moment – they are yet to get going on the social media side of things – but it will be interesting to see if they can reinvent themselves for 2013.

Have a listen to the set here:

Review: Black Manila – Single Launch

15 Dec

Date: 7th December 2012.

Venue: The Macbeth, Hoxton, London.

Image credit: victoriamckinney

Image credit: victoriamckinney

For the past month, three-piece London band Black Manila – consisting of Conrad Armstrong (vocals, bass), Liam Ramsden (vocals, drums) and Gareth Hoskins (vocals, guitar) – have entertained a residency at the Macbeth pub in Hoxton. This was both their final show at the venue and coincided with their single launch of June ’95.

Despite the fact that they took an hour and a half to come onstage, they more than made up for, putting in an electrifying performance. There’s a certain je ne sais quoi about BM and I am not sure if it was Conrad’s Hawaiian shirt and long blonde locks, or Gareth’s Miles-Kane sideburns intertwined with husky, rock-sexy vocals. Musically, they are very good.

I am not much of a fan of the crowd usually. Most of the time, gigs are spoiled by a handful of annoying East-London types at the front who jump around aimlessly, with very little musical appreciation. Heads bopping-along nonsensically, I had the impression that if many there had no care for the band playing that night, they left with a feeling of being in the right place at the right time. That is certainly true for the woman at the front, who – halfway through the Wild Eyes’ set – started licking her boyfriends’ neck.

Plunging into ‘Fiasco’, a song with a guitar underlay so sexy that it actually makes me want to cry every time I listen to it, they were a little slow to get going. They followed with their most recent single ‘June ‘95’, as well as several new pieces that don’t feature on their social media pages.  They are natural performers. Conrad Armstrong, several times, pleaded with people to pick up some freebies. Two songs in and Conrad shouted ‘That’s on the tape. The CASSETTE tape. Old school.’

                                                                                                        “It’s a song that shares a similar feature with many of the band’s music; only half a dozen lines of lyrics and the rest just pure guitar”

What I love about this band is the versatility of their music. From deep guitar riffs to the softer tune ‘England’, the band show their ability to mix hard garage rock with indie. With only half a dozen lines of lyrics, it’s a song that shares a similar feature with many of the band’s music; only half a dozen lines of lyrics and the rest just pure guitar. Just as god intended.

The crowd went wild, begging for more songs when front-man Conrad announced their last song. At one point, he passed the microphone around the crowd. An unbelievable performance and well worth the standing around.

Have a listen to a (bad) recording of the gig here: