Band of the month – February Edition

For my first ‘band of the month’, it’s the Glasgow grunge quartet ‘CRYSTAL’. The band is formed of Anna Shields, Blair Crichton, Lizzie Reid and Aidan McAllister.

One of the best things about CRYSTAL is seeing them live. CRYSTAL’S set is consistently explosive, never gets tiring and keeps you on the edge, wondering what’s next. Despite only having two of their songs available online, they’re the two songs that showcase CRYSTAL as the grungy but polished band that they are. CRYSTAL serve 90’s grunge and punk vibes that are dark and intoxicating but you still can’t help but sing along to the catchy choruses particularly in ‘Heaven’. The band feel different, whilst they definitely have clear influences, they are a big step away from what a lot of their local music scene consists of. They have their own sound and they have certainly perfected it in the form of latest single ‘Sex Rich’.

They have this air of confidence and stand somewhat separate from the rest of the scene which adds to the mysterious and enigmatic vibe of the band, which I have nothing but praise for. Anna and Blair’s chemistry doesn’t go unnoticed and their vocals blend perfectly together above the jagged guitar riffs. How candid Anna is about gender balance and sexism in the music scene makes me appreciate the band even more as it’s not something often spoken about in the punk/male dominated Glasgow scene. I’m always excited to see what Crystal do next and look forward to seeing them blossom even more this year. CRYSTAL are seriously ones to watch in 2019 and you can catch them like at the SAMA takeover festival, The Tenement TV Discover tour and Stag and Dagger festival this spring.

Check out CRYSTAL on Spotify: here.

Follow CRYSTAL on Instagram (@crystalbandx) and on Facebook (CRYSTAL).

(Photo – James A. Grant)

 

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Jonnie Wallace – ‘You’ Review

Jonnie Wallace has made big leaps recently ever since his departure into a solo career.
The singer/songwriter has developed strongly, stepping away from the more rock inspired music of his past with former band Ayakara. He is also evolving, changing things up musically as going from previously being solely a drummer to writing his own guitar songs, his new single ‘You’ is released next month. ‘You’ is a charming and sentimental love song dedicated to an anonymous someone. The song is sweet and warm, featuring careful guitar work and well mixed soft vocals. The song features accompanying strings which build up the wooing romantic tone of the song. Jonnie Wallace sings from the heart with a tune that you can’t help but smile and hum along to. The multi-talented musician writes music that’s made for anyone and this song is perfect for easy listening. Jonnie Wallace is inspired by other acoustic songwriters such as Lewis Capaldi but keeps his songs largely personal and meaningful. ‘You’ is anonymous and lets you fill in the blanks for yourself, maybe even reminding you of who ‘you’ would be to you.

‘You’ is released on the 15th of March. Listen to the rest of Jonnie’s music here:

Catch Jonnie’s next gig on the ninth of March supporting Cloud of Starlings at The Hug and Pint.

Follow Jonnie on Facebook (Jonnie Wallace Music) and Instagram (@Jonnie_wallace_music)

Jonnie is also part of a three-piece rock band ‘Felix and the Sunsets’.  A review of their upcoming single ‘Deja Vu’ can be found here.

Photo – Cameron Avery

Felix And The Sunsets – ‘Déjà Vu’ Review

Following the release of their debut EP ‘Don’t Sleep’, Felix And The Sunsets are back with a new brooding single. The Leith band consisting of Felix Christie, Lukas Christie and Jonnie Wallace take influence from Jack White and The Stooges, and their new single certainly shows this. The atmospheric track erupts into the typical garage rock sound Felix And The Sunsets are known for. The song carries the same heavy riff throughout that gives you a buzz from start to finish mixed with Felix’s unique voice and big energetic choruses made for being played live, and loud. The imaginative lyrics and JQGEsjvkpunchy beat stay stuck in your brain long after you listen to it and leave you wanting more. ‘Déjà Vu’ is the bands best song yet, and another reminder Felix And The Sunsets are definitely ones to watch.

‘Déjà Vu’ is out on the 1st of March. Listen to the rest of the band’s music Here

Catch Felix And The Sunsets next gig at Sneaky Pete’s (Edinburgh) with This Feeling on the 23rd of March! Tickets here: Here

Follow the band on Instagram (@felixandthesunsets) and on Facebook (Felix And The Sunsets).

Photo by: Lensy Henry

 

Fiendz – ‘Tesco Elvis’ Review

What is there to say about Fiendz debut single Tesco Elvis that many scholars and poets already haven’t. The song is, to sum up in one word, mental. It paints a perfect picture of what Fiendz are all about. The song is incredibly catchy, the words ‘Tesco Elvis’ chanted over and over again won’t leave you. Instrumental work on the song is excellent from all sides. There’s a consistent thumping bass line that gets you in to the rage induced mindset of the song, powerful intricate drums and a cacophony of screeching guitar, all of which puts you in a place where you feel like if a bus hit you, it would simply just break in half because you’re just so powerful. The lyrics are just surreal and feel like a very personal vendetta against an unknown Tesco employee. The scary thing is that you can’t help but agree. The song is a perfect opener to explain what Fiendz are and what it’s like to see them live. It’s high energy, it’s easy to remember, the lyrics are hilarious but most importantly it’s a fantastic song. Fiendz are a band that leave your jaw on the floor and then near enough punch  it off.

Listen to the single: here

Follow Fiendz on Instagram (@fiendz_yt) and on Facebook (Fiendz YT)

Catch their next gig at Broadcast on the 9th of March!

 

Top 5’s With Finlay McCarthy

I had the pleasure of talking to Finlay McCarthy, bassist of Glasgow’s goth pop band Walt Disco to find out a selection of his top 5’s when it comes to music at the moment.

Top 5 songs at the moment 

1) Toro y Moi – Who Am I

2) Albert Hammond Jr – Far Away Truths

3) George Clanton – Monster 50728521_943818759160146_7047350220958466048_n

4) Wild Nothing – Letting Go

5) LVL UP – Hidden Driver

 

Top 5 gigs you’ve ever been to

1) Slowdive @ The O2 ABC

2) The Cribs @ The O2 Academy

3) The 1975 @ The Hydro

4) Peach Pit @ Sneaky Pete’s

5) Young Fathers @ Electric Fields

Top 5 songs ever

1) The Bilinda Butchers – Stevie Nicks

2) The Voidz – Human Sadness

3) Ross From Friends – Pale Blue Dot

4) Porches – Now The Water

5) Hebronix – Unliving

Top 5 artists ever

1) The Smashing Pumpkins

2) Hebronix 50019353_317308402141984_1151852443435017009_n

3) The Cribs

4) The Bilinda Butchers

5) Porches

Top 5 Scottish Artists

1) Lucia

2) The Ninth Wave

3) St Martiins

4) Cocteau Twins

5) Young Fathers

Top 5 Scottish Artists Songs

1) Lucia – Blueheart

2) The Ninth Wave – Love You Til the End

3) St Martiins – ur so pretty

4) Cocteau Twins – Heaven or Las Vegas

5) Young Fathers – Shame

 

Photo’s by: Dougy Hill

Stream Walt Disco’s latest single ‘My Pop Sensibilities’ on Spotify here :

Follow them on Instagram (@waltdisco) and on Facebook (Walt Disco)

 

IT WON/T BE LIKE THIS ALL THE TIME – The Twilight Sad album review ★★★★

The twilight sad are a band which crawls breathlessly forward, singing about so much pain and hardship but still providing hope to all who listen in a promise of ‘IT WON/T BE LIKE THIS ALL THE TIME
Their newest studio album feels like a sudden sucker punch in retaliation from someone whos had enough of being pushed around. The sound of the album still carries that recognisable lonely, spacey guitar sound filled with  fuzz and squealing pedal effects which the band are known for but welcomes in a new sense of strength to its angst. Many of the songs on the album feature powerful almost operatic synth which gives everything a higher sense of importance, especially to the very personal and brooding words that frontman James Graham cries out. Songs such as ‘Keep it all to myself’ and ‘the arbor’ exemplify this pounding choir of synths.The album departs at times from a more guitar driven past with 2014’s ‘fourteen autumns and fifteen winters’ and ‘nobody wants to be here & nobody wants to leave’ to a highly synth driven soundscape being built up with the addition of those staple fuzzy guitars, with some still containing that heavy guitar sound such as ‘VTr’ and ‘Shooting Dennis Hopper Shooting’.
The album feels like an unexpected but undoubtedly correct way for the band to evolve, perfectly incorporating something new and unknown while still keeping it as close to their original sound as possible.The balance of this doesn’t even sway, it divides perfectly.
IT WON/T BE LIKE THIS ALL THE TIME’ pulls you in seductively and keeps you there.
The album sounds as true and honest as ever with James Graham’s unedited Lanarkshire accent, lulling you into the echoey space the songs create.
This is a band that have clearly gone through a lot and instead of letting that overcome them, they’ve taken it all on and become stronger for it.


Star Rating – ★★★★☆

Listen to the album here:

Here Come The Brides

Wives haven’t released any music, or even performed live, yet they’re the band people can’t stop talking about. In a time when all eyes are on the Glasgow music scene, with multiple Scottish bands joining the SXSW line up or embarking on UK tour’s, Wives bring something new to the scene with an unusual line up and a different sound. I spoke to the founding members Anna Reeves and Joshua Cakir for their first interview to find out more about the band.

What is Wives?

AR – me and Josh met about a year ago, weboth knew we were into music and I knew he was in a band (Edinburgh based band ‘Nasari’) and I study music now. I moved to Edinburgh and I started to hang out with Eilidh (guitarist in Wives) and decided we wanted to start a kind of riot girl band like a kind of band that had feminist themes, so then Josh and Cal (bass) who I’d met after a gig made a group chat and added Eilidh and Tom (drummer).

What is the inspiration behind wives? 55ace09370dbbb7238efd4078e0b4d6ebde09a331590df290c4b0ac16b0b3ea7

JC – Well, it’s 80s/90s inspired, we draw inspiration from a lot of other bands because all 5 of us are into all different types of music, some of it is similar, but we all have really different tastes.

AC- Lots of kinds of punk and post punk, and some new wave sounds too.

JC – Even some Sludgy, gothy, experimental stuff.

What bands/artists would you say have inspired your music?

AR – We want to make a mix of lots of different sounds, like the Pixies and maybe Slaves too.

JC – Placebo as well, that’s been brought up a lot and I’d say Radiohead too actually.

AR – We’re like a sexy Radiohead!

Why do you think a band like wives is so important at the moment?

JC – Cause there’s a very limited amount of strong female fronted bands out there at the moment.

AR – It’s a band with 5 different people from 5 completely different musical and artistic backgrounds and politics and feminism is really important to all of us. And also, in terms of the amount of music and subculture that’s happening in Glasgow and Edinburgh? Its another product of that.

JC – And I think in amongst the punk scene, all eyes are on Glasgow just now. I think Wives has come at the right time, cause you have a lot of bands and band styles like genres coming back and drawing influence from the 90’s. You’ve got lots of new bands like Hinds etc drawing influence from Bikini kill but making it more modern so it has more of a flare to it you could say.

AR- I think its going to take some working out and development but that’s what we’re most excited about.

b0e438f8e521c92bf297a3ed0d9fbc3ac1a071e54ba3fde97a5cabcffa8ee261JC – There’s a lot of musical talent in the band and what I think is good is that we’re not actually rushing a set, we’ll spend a long time on a song to get it right. The weird thing is we all have really different tastes but when we all come together, they all sound like the belong in the same set.

 What’s your plans for the future, in the next year or so?

AR – Lots more recording and writing. I think we’d like to do some videos too. We’re all really into visual arts, particularly Cal who’s just applied for art school.

JC – We’re looking to gig as much as possible as well, gigging is so important. We’ve only been on Instagram for 2 weeks and we’ve already had people asking us about playing with them. We’re planning to go into the studio in the next 2 or 3 months and get something out as soon as we can. We’re planning to not take it easy and just get right into it with the momentum we’ve already got.

AR – We’re taking our time in terms of being creative and having things how we want but we’re excited about it happening

When’s your first gig?

JC – 14th of March at Sneaky Pete’s (Edinburgh). And then 3 days later we’re doing the Queens of Noise conference with lots of good bands.

Catch Wives at their first live shows of 2019 and keep your eyes peeled for more announcements on their Instagram (@wivestheband) and their facebook (@Wives) .

Photos by Rosie Sco