Top Sounds - U

USELESS - Neglect {Ambulance} New four piece outta Switzerland with a five track EP that’s Grungy but arty in a Post-Punk hipster sense. Opener ‘Madcap’ certainly cranks out some convincing jams with barbed guitars, embittered vocals and a rather catchy chorus. ‘Dreamer’ got a bit lost in its own attempt to be overtly adventurous - plus it’s over six minutes long. ‘Cerebral Coma’ could actually take the highlight, being a droning blitzkrieg of whirling guitars and nihilistic vocals. I did find the tracks a bit over-long and over-complex. It’s without a doubt that these guys can create a decent sound when they just crank the guitars and kick out the jams, but too often it gets a tad muddled and doesn’t always hit the spot. Production across the whole EP is crisp and bruising. Make the songwriting a bit more concise, and this could be an interesting bunch indie rockers. (13.05.18)

Hit HERE for material reviewed prior to 2018 including:
UNDERCLASS UK, UNDERGROUND RAILROAD TO CANDYLAND, UNSANE, UPRIGHT CITIZENS and USELESS ID

Top Sounds - V

VACATION - Southern Grass: The Continuation Of Rock ‘n’ Roll Vol. 1 & 2 {Recess} Mammoth, sprawling 32-track double album from this band outta Cincinnati, Ohio. There’s a myriad of sounds here, ranging from WIRE-Lo-fi art-punk, through to high-melody POSIES ragged Indie Rock, subtle TELEVISION PERSONALTIES psychedelia and onto balls to the wall Garage Punk. Plenty of good moments too, be it opener ‘Sharptooth Tinsel Town’ that blasts like THE POSIES playing at The Fest, ‘Charades’, ‘Caked Joy Rag’ and closer ‘New Residue’ all of which brought to mind a lo-fi ROBYN HITCHCOCK, ‘Burnt Hair, Good Pair’ and ‘Lose Interest’ that are all killer raucous Pop-Punk tracks worthy of TOYS THAT KILL, ‘Blueberry Patch’, ‘The All’ and especially ‘Without You’ that had a killer guitar solo were all top notch Shoegazing Psychedelia a’la third album BIG STAR meeting LOOP, while ‘Sleepyhead’ and ‘El Bako’ brought to mind JAY REATARD at his very best. Hell, there was even ‘Conventional’ that had a killer ANGRY SAMOANS riff! Unfortunately, there was a lot of throwaway stuff too: ‘Sucking Bricks’, ‘Bad Hunter’ and ‘Sometimes’ to name but three. Sure, variation is good but these screamed ‘Filler’ (and I don’t mean in a MINOR THREAT way!). A shame, as they made this rather fractious and disjointed. Had this been a double 10", it would’ve been among the best releases of 2017 and among the very best on Recess Records in general. As it is, the good bits (which far outweigh the poor bits) are killer - just a tad more of the cliche ‘quality over quantity’ would been desired. (19.05.18)

Hit HERE for material reviewed prior to 2018 including:
VANILLA POD, VARUKERS, VIOLENT ARREST (2 reviews) and VIOLENT SOCIETY/ External Menace split