Sunday, 12 August 2018

Idles - Joy As An Act Of Resistance - Album Review


Joy As An Act Of Resistance

Partisan Records


Release date: 31st August 2018

For all you old seventies punks out there, this is the revival. It's noise with a purpose, It's got a message. It's punk as fuck and brings back all the memories of intelligence in punk by the likes of Crass who were more than just a bunch of noiseniks trying to out loud the rest of them. I can't do this for Louder Than War as me mate Ged Babey is doing it the twat! Join me in a journey of reviewing the most important and brilliant album of the year....

I must admit I've heard some quality albums this year including the awesome Evil Blizzard which has been on rotation for a while now, however this one ups the stakes in a different way. Where the Blizz  have took Psych rock into new realms Idles have revitalised punk in the same way with a blistering album. Their first album Brutalism was a slab of punk that got everyone excited with noise again. This difficult (fuck off!!) second album stays on the same path but addresses issues we need to hear about. It's like a personal autobiography to slamming tunes from lead singer Joe Talbot and is sometimes disturbing.

Colossus kicks off with a one note heavy riff and clicking drumsticks and just Goes and it goes and it goes into a mental riffery of noise reminiscent of The Jesus Lizard. Then it all folds in with a growling bass lick, then ends. BUT it doesn't! It turns into an Iggy Pop punktastic gem mentioning putting homophobes in coffins, Evil Knievel, Fred Astaire??? Crazy shit!

Next up is Never Fight A Man With A Perm which dwells on blokes who think they are hard. Again more guitar heavy stuff with funny as fuck lyrics such as 'You look like a walking thyroid' and 'You Top Shop tyrant, even your haircut's violent'! Quality.

I'm Scum covers your basic Sun reading wanker and kicks in with a Sleaford Mods style bass line and hits you in the face with a killer chorus and clever lyrics.

If you listen to 6 music you've probably heard this song a lot. It's all about unification and loving everyone, colour, creed, religion, we're all one community. Danny Nedelko is already an anthem and catchy as fuck. The bring em up knock em down brigade are already out to bash Idles but this song gets catchier every listen. Early Pixies comes to mind with this one.

Love Song slows down a bit but still sounds menacing, especially when Joe gets ironic with his 'I fuckin love ya... la la la la la la la la la' bit' with a back ground of crunching guitar.

I get really uncomfortable listening to June which his obviously about his unborn child. That's what I respect about this guy. He writes songs about tragedy to a punk theme which must be his way of dealing with it?? 'Babies shoes, for sale, never worn' For fucks sake....

Samaritans is just blinding. Kicking off with upbeat drumming and lyrics like 'Man up, chin up, grow some balls' A punk thriller this one all about hiding behind your fears by being a man and not getting upset about a death in the family or other tragedies. They were even on ITV News about speaking out to vulnerable people with similar problems. A song with a message...

Television rocks out like fuck and ramps up the punk with it's message of 'Fuck TV' Another nod to Sleaford Mods here which is no bad thing as they are the forefront these bands need to follow.

Great is another bass driven thundering track from the eyes of a remainer in these Brexit shitty times. All about flying the flag for Blighty and all that bollocks but also coming from a British muslim point of view to set the balance straight.

By far the best track on the album for me Gram Rock is fuckin quality! it kicks straight in with a quite quiet start of disturbing noise 'I'm sorry you're Grandad's dead.... lovely spread' then ambles along nicely until a big FUCK OFF guitar drum bass thing smacks you in the face at full volume. Sends those music shivers up my neck every time I hear it. You need to hear this song...

Cry To Me slows it down a little little bit (honest) but still gives you that sense you're listening to something special. For some reason Kermit The Frog pops up in my head when listening. Must be a subconcious thing....

Rottwelier just rocks out to make the whole album a special thing. Mad guitars, snakes in boots, vultures in breakfasts, a great end to a thriller.

If you want to hear an album that kicks you in the face but also gives you a message then it's right up your street. If you don't like punk rock then fuck off and buy Now That's What I Call Music 100....

On tour soon.

Wayne Carey.

Friday, 3 August 2018

Road To Rebellion live review

The Road To Rebellion – The Salty Dog Northwich.
Tuesday 31st July.
The Queers.
He Who Cannot Be Named.
The Attack.
Pardon Us.
As Rebellion Festival is getting closer hundreds of bands are warming up in the smaller venues across the country in anticipation of the UK’s biggest punk get together that is still thriving in Blackpool. Wayne Carey hits his local venue to take in four of the acts heading to the seaside soundclash.
The Salty Dog is fastly becoming the place to be for bands new and old to tread the circuit and has started attracting the Rebellion mob after being open for just over a year. Tonight I get talking to a few heads in the crowd that are heading to Blackpool and are whetting their appetite with a taster of these bands, three of them coming over from the USA.
First up are newcomers Pardon Us from Liverpool. They steam straight in with their power pop punk sound and sound like they’re enjoying every moment. They thank The Queers for giving them the chance of a support and do a short set of song mainly about Tories. Lead vocalist Morgan seems to have problems with one of his guitar strings but seems to persevere and just tells his guitar to fuck off. Good start.
The Attack hail from Florida and pack a punch with their tight punk set mostly from their last album On Condition. It’s a straight up performance and tracks like Skeleton and Sons & Daughters stand their own. As does new track Bad Guys which makes for what may be a promising new album in the pipeline.
Now it all gets a bit strange… He Who Cannot Be Named was guitarist in punk legends Dwarves and even faked his own death at one point. Tonight he treats us to an acoustic set and it’s fucking funny! Songs about Hate, killing, hating kids, eating babies is all the norm for him apparently? He comes up with lines like ‘Saturday night, wrote my life story on a brick, does a love song section in his own warped way and a quite disturbing song called Duct Tape Love (I’ll let you work that one out). All this in his personally modelled gimp mask and black Y-fronts. Brilliant stuff.
The Queers are no stranger to the Rebellion crowd. They have been around for years now and their brand of Americana Ramones style punk is still as loud and strong as ever. They do a set full of crowd pleasers including the excellent Fuck The World which gets the fist pumping and clapping going, even the grumpy as fuck old school punk stood near me eventually smiles. They can command the crowd with thei large back catalogue and give us some favourites like Granola Head and I Hate Everything. The three main band members are all donned in their trade mark baseball caps and are really going for it. They are joined onstage by another guitarist who looks like he’s been drafted in from a metal band up the road, donned in a Queers t-shirt and rocking out like fuck. They pull off a great version of Motherfucker and do the obligatory cover of Wipeout which was featured on the film Surfs Up. And they even said the immortal line ‘Thank You Norwich’!! It’s a great way to warm up for Rebellion and they did the Northwich punk contingent proud tonight.
Rebellion stage times:
Thursday 2nd August.
Pardon Us – Rebellion Introducing Stage – 11.45am.
He Who Cannot Be Named – Almost Acoustic Stage – 9.55pm.
The Queers – Club Casbah – 10.10pm.
Saturday 4th August.
The Attack – Arena Stage – 3.00pm,

Monday, 4 June 2018

Cabbage's Favourite Albums.

Photo credit: Andrew Whitton.
LTW favourites Cabbage have had a good year. Their own art exhibition, a top 30 with their ace debut album and a great UK tour ending with a mini festival at The Ritz in Manchester (see live review here: They take some time out to let me know their favourite albums. Each member of the band gives me their top two picks!

Lee Broadbent - Vocals
Butthole Surfers - Locust Abortion Technician
I remember very clearly the first time I listened to the satan introduction collapse down the stairs and fall into a black Sabbath cover. This album just tips the rest of the records for me due to that immediate feel of 'getting it' right away. I heard it at a time when contemporary music sounded dull and resting. It felt like the music I wanted to hear and wanted to play. Going from incredulous to inspired after The first listen I always have to include it in my favourite records. The human cannonball is my person favourite, it sounds like if joy division were raised feral and ate mushrooms and pro plus for tea.

Country Teasers - Destroy All Human Life
For anyone like me who's niche is DIY anti-country ballads then this is the perfect album. His ability to insight all negative stereotypes into first person lyrics is such a great reflection of British conscience that people could relate to from any of the last 4 decades. The repetition in the music is captivating and the direction it takes always increases your attention. From the musical letter to Datblygu singer David Edwards to the paradox of conservative yearning in come back maggy every song is just spot on. Golden Apples could possibly be one of the greatest and simplest songs ever written and although he now has a resounding cult following its hardly known.

Eoghan Clifford - Rhythm Guitar.
Beach House - Bloom
Perfect for getting yer 'ed down in the van...that may not sound like much of a compliment but it truly is. When I hear that intro to opening track 'Myth' it conks me reet out it does. The perfect antidote to our hell inspired sprautrock.

Echo & The Bunnymen - Ocean Rain
I spend a lot of time with people from Liverpool and they have brainwashed me in to choosing this album. My heart also now lies with with other artists such as Kraftwerk and Bob Dylan but this one pips it for me. Hats off to Will Sergeant...the guitar work makes me weak at the knees, especially on the track 'Angels and Devils', it cuts me in half with a bread knife.

Asa Morley - Drums.
Sugar-Copper Blue
This album has been a favourite of mine since a young age. My parents played it alot in the car and its just stuck with me since. Bob Mould just writes great songs, it's as simple as that

Fugazi will always be one of my favourite bands and this album is the reason why. Every song on it is terrific. As a drummer, listening to Brendan Canty and his ability of writing interesting parts but also playing for the song is admirable.

Stephen Evans - Bass Guitar.
The Beatles – The White Album.
I was given 2 albums at an early age which continue to influence the way in which I listen to and write music. Black Sabbath’s self titled debut released in 1970, and Help by The Beatles released in 1965.
Help encouraged me to further investigate The Beatles’ back catalogue, where I found the 1968 Beatles self titled album, otherwise known as The White Album. To me, this double album, full of such a variety of different styles of song, is a masterpiece and firmly holds the number 1 spot in my list of favourite albums. I continue to aspire to write a song half as good as anything on this album, perhaps excluding Revolution Number 9 which just annoys me. My top 3 songs off this album are Rocky Racoon, I Will and Julia.

Black Sabbath – Self Titled.
Black Sabbath’s debut album inspired a fondness of the macabre and riff based music inside me. The band intended to combine their music with horror, subject matters concerning the occult, and dark stage theatrics. They named the band after the Mario Bava film of the same name, which is responsible for my ongoing obsession with horror films. Black Sabbath are the pioneers of the heavy metal genre, as they combined riffs with dark imagery and dark lyrics of dread. Led Zeppelin is not heavy metal, as it misses the key macabre element. My top 3 songs off this album are N.I.B., The Wizard and Black Sabbath.

Joe Martin - Vocals / Guitar.
Chameleons - What Does Anything Mean? Basically.
Unsung heroes of the 80's indie scene. The Chameleons paved the way for all of the following Manchester scene. This, their second album as they were pulling away from their existing record company, pushes Mark Burgess and Reg Smithies song writing ability in another direction from their stunning debut album Script for the Bridge. Fantastic, atmospheric, powerful, stunning songs.

My Bloody Valentine - Loveless
What at first comes across as an aural manifestation of the Texas Chain Saw Massacre soon reveals itself as a spellbinding mix of complex song structures, melancholy vocals and droning but intelligently applied feedback guitar. Behind the white noise lies a whole world of hidden melodies, sleepy moans and mesmerizing rhythms that with every listen evoke further oneiric horizons.

Words by Wayne Carey who writes for Louder Than War. His author profile is here and you can catch his blog here.

Evil Blizzard: The Worst Show On Earth - album review.

Ey up people! Get your ears round this album!!

Evil Blizzard
WSOE front cover_preview
The Worst Show On Earth
Release Date: 26th June 2018
Louder Than War Bomb Rating 5
Evil Blizzard crawl out of Preston, and deliver their third album which is clown shoes and epitomises the Spinal Tap review ‘Shit sandwich’. Wayne Carey reports the torment….

Who the fuck do these guys think they are? Dressing up like nonces and a bloke dressed like a pig trying to look hard with a few big knives? Fuckin’ Boy George scares me more! The one with the mop should make a comeback and sweep up this sorry messs…
Joking apart this third album from Preston’s finest delivers on every level. When Everybody Come To Church came out a few years back you’d have thought they couldn’t get any darker or menacing. This 8 track stunner proves me wrong. It opens  like a soundtrack to a horror film before evolving into a belting rhythm of drums and bass, then more bass as it cranks up the volume with amazing guitar effects you thought couldn’t be made with a bass guitar. Hello is as powerful an opener as Are You Evil was and doesn’t stop here. Blizz fans will have heard the glam stomp of Fast Forward Rewind and it is becoming a live favourite as I witnessed at The Ritz earlier this month. Unleash The Misery is like a menacing nursery rhyme you’d use to keep your kids in order as Side sneers the lines ‘with half an ounce of avarice and half a stone of spice’ like a whispering Ozzy, and then sprawls into a pysch stomper with bollocks. Those We Left Behind continues the assault and has a nice surprise in the chorus as you can actually hear a tinge of a more rockier Embrace going on which was probably planted by that McNamara bloke! Like A God chugs away into a Sabbath mantra and you just know these freaks can play and fuck about with that bass. Blizzpig plays a big part on this album as there are lots of synth effects going on throughout the show. Stand out track is a pure blast of 2 minute speedpunk, namechecking FilthyDirty and the Blizz Family and totally blows me away with its Motorhead meets the Ramones stylee. Then comes the obligatory dub pysch 12 minuter which is what they do best. Slow building into a dark rock cracker reminiscent of Whalebomb. Closer, The Worst Show On Earth is eerie as fuck and crashes out into an apocalyptic storm and insane German ramblings which Stoko from the band explained to me. You work it out…
The whole point of Blizz is they’re not trying to be different or groundbreaking. They’re just doing amazing stomping Black Sabbath tinged hard rock shit which is what the people are missing. They glam up in their weird costumes and masks, play fucked up bass driven tunes and just wanna rock like fuck for their own pleasure and our displeasure. They write great tunes that worm their way into your head and batter your senses. It’s all about the stomp rock that drags you in.
Another album of the year by a mile!

Official Website
Evil Facebook
Blizzard Twitter

Tour Dates:

Tickets on sale

Saturday 9th June – Blitz, Preston, UK.
Saturday 16th June – Stoke Prior Sports & Country Club, Bromsgrove, UK.
Saturday 30th June – Sunday 1st July – Jesstival 2018.
Saturday 7th July – The Hairy Dog, Derby, UK.
Saturday 27th October – Brudenell Social Club, Leeds, UK.
Friday 14th December – Manchester Academy 3, UK.
Words by Wayne Carey. His author profile is here and you can catch his blog here.

Monday, 14 May 2018

Parquet Courts - Wide Awake! - Album Review

It's me again. This latest album by Parquet Courts is my favourite album of the year so far!

Parquet Courts

Wide Awake!
Release Date: 18th May
Louder Than War Bomb Rating 5
This stunning new album by New York’s finest will set your ears alight with it’s vast array of sound on their finest moment, having honed that clever song writing craft with a little help from Danger Mouse.
Wide Awake! is New York’s Parquet Courts’ fifth record since their formation eight years ago. It’s also their most groundbreaking. It’s an album about independence and individuality but also about collectivity and communitarianism. Love is at its centre. There’s also a freshness here, a breaking of new territory that’s testament to the group’s restless spirit.
In part, this may be attributed to the fact that it’s produced by Brian Burton, better known as Danger Mouse, but it’s also simply a triumph of their songwriter’s art. The songs, written by Austin Brown and Andrew Savage are filled with their traditional punk rock passion, as well as a lyrical tenderness, but are elevated to even greater heights by the dynamic rhythmic propulsion of Max Savage (drums) and Sean Yeaton (bass).
The plan from the start was to introduce new musical ideas previously unexplored by the band. These were varied. For Brown, a few of the touchstones were Grace Jones, The Upsetters, Townes Van Zandt, Parliament and Augustus Pablo. For Savage though, the soundtrack to the sessions in Electric Lady Studios in New York and later at Sonic Ranch in Texas, was different.
“I found myself listening to a lot of ‘80s American punk,” he explains, “I’m talking about Big Boys, Minutemen, The Dicks, Flipper. Bands that were no doubt punk but don’t quite fit in. I’ve always loved the playfulness of Minutemen and Big Boys, and especially the way the latter mixed funk into their sound.”
It all kicks off (wait for it…) with Total Football a punky anthem typical of the Courts and lyrically gives a nod to creative and inspiring individuals and is named after the Dutch theory of soccer and has an almost terrace like chant in the chorus.
Violence is an excellent track with it’s spoken word proto hip hop sound and explores how violence is accepted as casual and part of every day life, ie; the recent shootings in the USA being a footnote. It also has that classic New York sound as does next track Before The Water Gets Too High with it’s clever lyrics and more chilled out beats going back to the ballad like tunes on Human Performance.
Mardi Gras Beads is another ballad type tune and has a mellow stoned out groove with an excellent guitar hook added to give you a rush. It’s a song that Brown says he’s always wanted to write but never had the courage. I love it!
Almost Had to Start A Fight / In & Out Of Patience is my standout track on the album and one of those songs that grab you after one listen. It’s a NY punk stunner that rolls into a Fall like garage stormer which Mark E Smith would gladly put his name on. It ends bizarrely like a live track to introduce the next hit Freebird II which sounds fuck all like Freebird by the way and chugs along nicely.
Normalization starts as a Talking Heads style number but gets far too funky for its liking and makes me want to dance like a muthafucka. My legs are wiggling typing this just thinking about it. Definitely got some Funkadelic in there but punked up.
Next up Back To Earth just totally confuses the shit out of me as it’s nothing like anything they’ve done before. It’s a stone cold dub reggae wonder with brilliant lyrics. It reminds me of the scene from the Young Ones (80’s comedy classic kids!) where the hippy floats back down from the moon after hitting the bong.
Wide Awake! if you’ve not heard it yet is an upbeat funk number with the disco overtones and whistling to give it that party sound which has Danger Mouse written all over it. A tune for the summer festival crowd. Then NYC Observation is a short punk number that takes you through the streets of New York, taking in the sights and smells of the mean streets, and lyrically is, well, a NYC observation!
Extinction is another stand out tune, fusing punk with funk and lyrically the epitomy of what the Courts stand for, songs about emotion and stepping out of that comfort zone to good effect. Death Will Bring Change again changes tract and has a 15 strong Upper East Side boys choir singing the chorus to great effect with it’s lyrics about life and death.
The album finishes strongly with Tenderness, an upbeat song which starts off sounding like George Michael recording with Warren Zevon, a summery funky upbeat number about spreading some tenderness around to everyone leaving you feeling happy in yourself.
I’ve followed Parquet Courts since their amazing debut album. I can honestly say I thought they’d never match the likes of Light Up Gold but this is genuinely their best album to date, ambitious, diverse, one of those ‘you can’t pigeonhole’ bands that keep on amazing me. This is probably their most accessible effort to date and should hit all the clubs with it’s punk funk sound and disparate theme. One of the best albums this year!

You can pre-order the album here
They don’t do Facebook or Twitter apparently…
Words by Wayne Carey who writes for Louder Than War. 

Wednesday, 2 May 2018

Frank Turner - Be More Kind - Album review.

Latest album review!

 Frank Turner
Be More Kind
Release Date: 4 May 2018
The punk folk chameleon is back in fine form with his seventh solo album and it sounds refreshing and summery despite the songs themes dealing with  this crazy world in which we live. Wayne Carey reviews the Frank Turner’s latest outpourings.
Three years on from his last solo album Frank has definitely not been having a break. His gig count has gone up to over 2,100, he’s reworked his old material on the release of Songbook last November and brought back Mongol Horde for a few dates earlier this year.
Turner was halfway through writing a very different sort of album, a concept record about women from the historical record who had been ignored, when he was reading a collection of Clive James’ poetry and one particular line compelled him to re-think his direction. It was from a poem called Leçons Des Ténèbres: “I should have been more kind. It is my fate. To find this out, but find it out too late.” “It devastated me the first time I read it,” he says. “A lot of older, wiser people tend to say things like that, that the things that come out in the wash at the end of a human life are the way you treated the people around you. In the modern world, that’s a lesson that all of us, myself included could do to learn.”
Turner and his band, the Sleeping Souls, were on tour in the USA in 2016 “when the world decided to go collectively nuts” and the songs that make up Be More Kind started to come together. “Somewhere in the record, there’s a convergence of the ideas of personal and political, which is a central theme of the album,” Turner says. One of the driving themes of the album is empathy, even for your enemy. “You should at least be able to inhabit the mental universe of the people you disagree with. If you can’t do that, then how do you communicate with people other than through force of arms, which is something we all agree is a bad idea.” Behind some of the best songs of Turner’s career is the idea that the human race needs to find better ways of disagreeing than screaming each other down. Turner’s last two records, 2013’s Tape Deck Heart and 2015’s Positive Songs For Negative People, dealt with the fallout from a break-up and saw Turner struggling to cover the cracks in his personal life. Now happily in a relationship and living with his partner and their cat, he again set his sights to the bigger picture.
After the stripped-down, live-sounding Positive Songs…, Turner wanted to try a new approach for the record. Originally, he contacted Jenkins and Block at their Niles City Sound studio in Fort Worth, Texas with the idea of recording a white soul album in the vein of Dexys Midnight Runners. He found they were equally enthusiastic when he changed his mind and decided he wanted to record a more rock-led album with tints of electronic-pop. “I have an obscure corner of my music taste where I’m into glitch electronic music and Warp Records,” says Turner. “It’s not an electronic record but I got into arpeggiator synths.” Positive Songs… was cut in nine, intense days whereas Be More Kind was made over a period of seven months, giving Turner the opportunity to turn songs on their head, try different versions and shake up the dynamics within his band.
Be More Kind is a big shift from his earlier material with a lot of experimenting going on using new ideas. It’s definitely no Mongol Horde or Aphex Twin although he has used some new techniques to change his earlier sound.
It starts with Don’t Worry which builds up into a crescendo of clapping and gospel overtones mixed with that familiar FT mantra. 1933 is the closest you’ll get to a ‘punk’ song on the album (besides 21st Century Survival Blues) and is a good sharp witted dig at the politicians and the world in their bubble.
Little Changes is a cracking little pop song and you can tell he’s been listening to 80’s pop for some inspiration. . It started out as a simple folk song about relationships, in particular drawing on his experiences with CBT therapy in the last couple of years – the idea of trying to make small, practical adjustments to your life. A great track for the summer.
Be More Kind is more back to his folk roots and is quite straight forward but hits the heartstrings with it’s beautiful melodies. Lyrically, it draws on Clive James’ poem “Leçons Des Tenebres” and Kurt Vonnegut, and theoretically ends up somewhere simple but powerful.
Make America Great Again is a song aimed straight for the indie pop jugular and is a call to the people to make the racists ashamed again, a good call in these recent times. The sentiment gathered itself as he was on the road in the USA in August 2016, during the election campaign. He’s a huge fan of America, its people and its culture, and finds the current nativist outbreak pretty dispiriting – not least because they’ve so obviously misidentified what’s “great” about America, historically and conceptually.
Going Nowhere continues the theme and is a straight up folk love song. Not all of the album is trying to be in radically different musical territory. The line “In there like swimwear” is an expression that Americans haven’t generally heard before, which Frank enjoys.
Brave Face is Frank’s turn on a road trip style song recapturing his travel across the USA and is a cracking folk rock number. There She Is has lots of influences flying around with an 80’s pop feel and more charming melodies. The stand out track for me has to be 21st Century Survival Blues which is classic FT, the sort of song that got me into his music in the first place, that punk folk sound with clever lyrics. Will go down great live with The Sleeping Souls. I also rate Blackout, good guitar licks and the lyrics about a power cut that gives you the image of the council estate blackouts in the late 70’s and 80’s (if you’re an old bastard like me).
The last three songs Common Ground, The Lifeboat and Get It Right are all heartwarming folk songs that take you to lazy summer days with a cold lager. It leaves a good feeling and you know Frank hasn’t just stalled in the songwriting stakes just yet. This album would be a good introduction to new listeners and has more diversity than his earlier stuff. Another winner!

Pre-Order the album here:
A nice guy all round and a songwriter to be cherished. Frank Turner is still touring with The Sleeping Souls and you can catch him at the dates below.
May 2018
1st – Southampton Guildhall.
2nd – Southend Cliffs Pavilion.
4th – Leicester O2 Academy.
5th – Oxford O2 Academy.
8th – Hull City Hall.
9th – Norwich UEA.
11th – London Roundhouse.
Jan 2019
22nd – Birmingham Arena.
25th – Victoria Warehouse Manchester.
27th – Leeds First Direct Arena.
29th – O2 Academy Glasgow.
Feb 2019
1st – Bournemouth Windsor Hall.
2nd – Cardiff Motorpoint Arena.
3rd – Alexander Palace London.
The Frank Turner website is  here
He is also on Facebook  and Twitter
Words by Wayne Carey who writes for Louder Than War. His author profile is here and you can catch his blog at

Brix & The Extricated / Blanketman - The Ruby Lounge Friday 27th April

My latest live review people!

Brix & The Extricated / Blanketman
The Ruby Lounge, Manchester
Friday 27th April
Back on home turf the wonderful Brix & Co kick out their post Fall new wave stuff to a delighted home crowd and some rather excited stage invaders!
Last time I was in The Ruby Lounge was to see my favourite Manc band at that time (I’ll let you guess…) and discovered a gem of a venue.
This time I arrive just as local support band Blanketman hit the stage. Their frontman is like a reincarnation of Ian Curtis and their dark post punk sound is similar in many ways, not that they are copyists as their tunes prove and they will be local favourites for the future. They do a short set that gets the young and old (that’s me) music fans going and please everyone with their dark pop stuff. They air new single as the encore ‘The Long Arm Of Entrapment’ and Adam Hopper wears his guitar almost under his chin battering those strings and looks intense and brooding with his I.C. mannerisms.

Next up comes the gift of 3 ex Fall members, with Paul and Steve Hanley being the powerhouse of rhythm, added by Jason Brown and Steve Trafford fronted by a Blondie-esque Brix kicking it with style. They play most of their excellent album and have the place bouncing with their glam racket (ha!). Obviously there are a few Fall numbers in there including an excellent Dead Beat Descendant, US 80’s 90’s, and LA. A few new tracks were aired and sound promising. Damned For Eternity goes down a storm and we are treated to a couple of young fans (Emily and Eden who I chatted with later) getting on the stage and getting booted off by security. Hollywood is fuckin ace live as is Valentino and Brix looks like she has a new lease of life with The Extricated. Sadly we’ll never see The Fall again with Mark E Smith so this is like a breath of fresh air knowing that the Hanley brothers and Brix can keep the torch going and play live like this for young and old alike. Highlight of the night for me was New Big Prinz as the encore after a frenetic Totally Wired. Emily and Eden were invited back on stage by Brix and danced like maniacs as she lost her shit to the dynamics of one of The Falls finest moments from I Am Kurious Oranj. A delightful night and a step back in time with some classics thrown into the mix of a great debut album by these Manc legends. Bring on the next album.

Blanketman Facebook
B&TE Facebook
Words by Wayne Carey who writes for Louder Than War. His author profile is here and you can catch his blog at