Got a couple of Brighton-flavoured talents on show for you today. Big things are very much anticipated as the local buzz is building like an Ann Summers store with a Duracell salesman in it…
We are a little over excited here at The Recommender, so we better make sure we don’t bubble over on this one. Here is a genuinely exciting two piece band, with one instrument between them – drums! However, banging said instrument is the ex-Maccabees Rob Dylan Thomas, so they arrive with credentials. What has us about to burst though is the massive talent that is the singer, Derek Meins, an eccentric, theatrical poet, but don’t let that put you off. He’s quite simply astonishing. If you want your frontmen to have bags of committed energy, a distinctive, original vocal and a style not seen from anyone in the last half century, then you have it here. Their live show is a mind blowing, rapid fire blast of nuclear proportions. He belts out sweaty, rocking, blues-bang vocals, squeezing everything possible out of his chest. Backing him up is the racing, broken, big beats that thunder on behind him. Empowering lyrics, “tell them there’s no time to wait anymore. Get ready!”, rally the crowd. For their bravery and originality alone they should be praised. It’s direct and guaranteed to shake you up, which is an amazing feat, with no guitars, no keyboards, or anything else, bar the odd sample. It’s stripped down to the bone, but able to rattle you raw in a way that will leave you inspired. Real talent and true songsmiths should be able to play without plugging anything in at all. Never before has an artist been so electrically charged without a plug in sight! (MB)
Find him here: Myspace
These next two listings share a certain amount of gloom that surrounds their sound. We mean the sort that’s born out of the kind of school Ian Curtis and Nick Cave are found teaching at. That’s no bad thing so long as you can hear the song behind the fog, the melody in the scary mist. Thankfully this four piece remove the boredom and the tedious noises that often came out of their early 80s influences. Even though they take their name from an old Bad Seeds track, they introduce a modern lift and certainly don’t take themselves quite so seriously as the other recent similar purveyors, such as Editors or Interpol. One single is already out on the Deadly People label, with both the A and B sides having a deathly subject matter. Both tracks successfully bring us a great example of the rumbling doom pop they cover so well, with Tobi’s vocals sounding so baritone it’s as if it’s been slowed down! It’s all backed up by delicate guitars, a sweeping, echoing synth and upbeat drumming that helps build the climactic tunes to bursting point. For music written with the lights switched off they certainly have a bright future, but you won’t find a smile between them. They are playing a part and it’s in this contrast that you realise they aren’t that serious after all, (nobody could really be this moody could they?), and that lifts it. A lesson missed by other pretenders to the post punk and nu wave revival. (MB)
Find them here: Myspace
OK, so many bands seem to leech off of Joy Division these days it could seemingly become a genre all its own! For the extreme evidence of this just see the Russian band Motorama, which we blogged about here. Although Lyrebirds have much to owe Joy Division, there’s just as much to be paid to the likes of Echo & The Bunnymen and Interpol. However, we were invited to see them perform twice in recent weeks, including a charmingly confident show at their first ever headlined gig. Encouraging indeed. their frontman is a chip off the Richard Ashcroft block, with his tight leather jacket, lanky looks, confident swagger and intense, committed performance. This Brighton five piece are at a very early stage, but there’s already a giant buzz around town. Playing dark, brooding rock, they always seem to lift off as the songs middle out to a powerful chorus. There’s a great mixture of pace and patience from track to track, with a lot of talent on show in their pounding guitars, shaking drums and rumbling bass, (which incidentally is played by, ex-Kooks, Dan Logan). Nothing has been confirmed yet, but The Recommender is requesting a photoshoot with them, so we will let you know if that comes off. In the mean time you can see a couple of the photographs we took during these recent gigs at The Recommender’s Flickr page. (MB)
Find them here: Myspace
Don’t panic, we haven’t gone all dark and miserable on you. Perhaps the music we’ve selected today is simply a reflection of the economic times we live in and we know that won’t last forever, so pop back soon for more cheery positivity in the turn around.