Punk for the masses? Surely not.. Bexatron seem to think so!

Anything remotely considered ‘punk’ is, by design, meant to be decisive in it’s very nature. So, even with the tassels of ‘pop’ or ‘glam’ sub genre’s tacked on, a punk band that seeks to become a thoroughly accessible, all encompassing live experience is anarchic in itself, right? Well dreams of this nature are being realised by London glam-rockers Bexatron who, through lead track ‘Dirty Disco‘, are establishing themselves as a ‘must see’ live event.

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At first listen, the most noticeable quality the record has is it’s undeniable levels of energy it holds – certainly a great place to start to feed the awaiting masses. In some cases, a high level of production is a thinly veiled mask giving a tired cause an artificial resuscitation, only for the live performances to be found wanting. For Bexatron, Rebecca Eite up at the front is looking to establish herself as something of an icon, a ‘Neo-Blondie’ for the modern era. Through her, a sense of authenticity is ever-present an permeates through the spirit of the record as a whole.

This is the kind of music that is sure to thrive in inner city suburban surroundings. Highly visible bass lines subconsciously slide your stance towards a backward lean as mind follows feet. Imagine being grabbed by the sleeve and forced on the dance floor, only to find the masses aren’t all wearing gin-thinned mascara and stompy boots. The simplicity of the song structure does a lot to ensure the music is easily accessible, dare-I-say DJ friendly, framing Rebecca Eite as an enviable front-woman for the modern age to be seen, heard and emulated.

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Bexatron have taken great strides towards engaging with their fans – offering back stage passes and regular giveaways to fans, which then goes a long way towards making individuals feel just a bit special. Small movements here could pay huge dividends when looking to establish yourself as an icon and, already having scheduled a headline tour in the UK over November and December 2018, with European dates to follow, is a clear testament of that.

When the inevitable pogo-hopping happens, plastic cups are an advantage. I advise to fill it with Snakebite.

Snakebite and Black

 

Psychedelic hip-hop holds the key to understanding ‘The Human Experience’

So often, music has been a prime source of escapism as a creative medium for artists and fans alike – a way to alleviate yourself from the struggles of everyday living. Generally speaking, in both society and in the music industry, there is a primary focus towards fitting into niche categories and labels by which you can assert yourself through a visible and vibrant personality. Such is not the case for alternative rapper Jonny Dee and his exploration of the ‘Human Experience’.

Jonny Dee

While rap itself is, in essence, a rather self-contained entity, first impressions appear more reminiscent of another kind of Experience, namely Jimi Hendrix’s. Jonny Dee’s own brand of psychedelic hip-hop is on a mission to find freedom and peace in everyday struggles, striding towards love and self-understanding.

There’s much on display which differentiates Jonny from his peers in the genre, perhaps most notably his own scattering of guitar performances throughout the record. Immediately striking as being somewhat unusual and special in itself, it’s self evident as a source of pride and inspiration – citing personal tastes flaring towards the likes of The Beatles and David Bowie as possible reasoning behind stemming down that particular path. The main differential comes from the essence of each track, coming less from a place of bragging about personal wealth and aspiration, with more of a heartfelt good vibe that urges people to be at peace and better themselves.

From the first instance, the uplifting nature of the record is self evident. His lyrical style is one that flows with its own back and forth rhythm, which does much to flesh out the underlying theme – you can hear that smile resonate. The overall tone varies from track to track, a subtle nod to the spectrum of the human condition. From the free and laid back dancer in ‘A Ways Away’, to the supersonic soul-funk of lead track ‘Rhythm of My Life’, to the droning distortion found ‘In the Sound’, the flavour of the rainbow bounces from pillar to post.

With a healthy dose of fizz and colour, stave off the voodoo with a Blue Shoe.

Video release for ‘The Man Who Fell From The Sky‘ coming soon

Blue Shoe

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/iamnotjonnydee

Twitter: https://twitter.com/iamjonnydee

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/iamjonnydee/

Website: http://artistecard.com/iamjonnydee

 

 

Bill Magill invites patrons for one last hurrah at the Ha-Ra

In a similar vain to the kind of characters that you might discover on a classic Tom Waits album from the early 70s, ‘Last Night at the Ha-Ra’, the latest release from American songwriter Bill Magill, is a highly thought out collective of tales in which the revelations of a group of regulars of the Ha-Ra bar in sunny San Francisco share their innermost while exploring deep emotional themes such as how far one is willing to go for the woman they love, and even a heartfelt exploration of assisted suicide.

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Now hailing in Aix-en-Provence, in the south of France, the American born Magill, has assembled musicians from Britain, France, America and Australia to flesh out the reality of the narrative – each of them bringing something of their native influence to enhance the experience. As well as Magill’s core band at Vivid Stage Productions, a host of invited guests such as Pete Thomas – drummer for Elvis Costello and the Attractions and Daniel Mille – the award-winning French accordionist, have also contributed.

The record, in fact, has a distinctively French flair to it and as well as an un-satirised favouring of an accordion, it also features vocals in the language from his significant other. Nuance and diversity are real strengths of the recording, and little details such as authentic sounds of glasses being ‘cheers’d’, which were recorded at the actual venue, lie at the heart of its essence.

Take care not to moisten the carpet with spillage on this outing, as elbows will be in full sway as the core themes of this one tug at the heartstrings. We suggest that French lager be in full flow.

 

‘Land of Hope’: a new protest song from Beldon Haigh

Scottish singer songwriter has already written himself into the history books, being one of the only modern day curators of protest songs, but now he is back with ‘Land of Hope’- a song inspired by the refugee crisis which has seen so much exposure in the media of late.

Beldon started off his career back in the 80s playing in a number of bands such as Mikifin and Boxing Clever, but after taking a long break from music, he returned to his passion with a vengeance – penning a protest song about Donald Trump after a dream gave him the inspiration.

However, ‘Land of Hope’ depicts all the feeling and sentiment that you would expect from a song that was written after Beldon saw the famous photo of Alan Kurdi, a 3 year old Syrian boy, who drowned and was washed up on the beach after his family tried to cross into Europe.

Despite the severe nature of what Beldon is addressing in his music, ‘Land of Hope’ is actually a very upbeat song, and whilst some may find this odd, or even disrespectful – those people would be missing the most important word here: ‘hope’. This is a jovial, upbeat song because it needs to be; after all, it’s aim is to get people really thinking and acting on the atrocities they see on the news.

What drink to accompany ‘Land of Hope’?

It doesn’t seem right that we pair an intoxicating beverage with a song of such seriousness and relevance but if anything, perhaps a strong coffee might propel you from your sofa into becoming an activist against the refugee crisis. It might happen. You never know.

 

Links:

https://twitter.com/beldonhaigh

https://www.facebook.com/Beldon-Haigh-Freedom-An-Anti-Trump-Protest-Song-1270990246327550/?fref=ts

https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/freedom/id1195525999?i=1195526008

 

 

‘When The Innocents Go To War’: Marilyn Carino

Having shared stages with the likes of Black Star and David Byrne, Buddhist musician Marilyn Carino has hit us with her second solo album Leaves, Sadness, Science. Also, featuring the talents of Mike Mills (bassist of R.E.M), the record is a unique fusion of electronic, hip-hop and soul vibes.

Carino’s vocals have been labelled, “powerful to the point of bringing you to tears” and it is easy to see why when listening to her music. The Brooklyn native wrote, recorded, mixed and performed all of Leaves, Sadness, Science – a collection of head-space grooves formed from layered, Moog-y synths and potent beats. Her long time practice of Nichiren Buddhism is the force that forms her songs into gripping monologues that explore themes of sex and radical self-expression.

Carino recorded her first album at Neil Young’s studio with Crazy Horse bassist Billy Talbot acting as producer. She then took a one-way ticket to London where she landed a job as an engineer in reggae recording studios. Upon returning to the U.S. she co-founded the vintage electronic group Mudville, producing three critically acclaimed albums and wrote lyrics for the great producers Sly and Robbie (Grace Jones, Simply Red). Mudville’s song ‘Wicked’ went on to win the 2008 Independent Music Award for Best Song. She recorded and produced her first solo album ‘Little Genius’ in 2011, and recently contributed vocals and lyrics to the Words Hurt indie hip hop collective’s ‘Fuck That Pretty Boy Shit’, featuring Samuel T. Herring, vocalist of Future Islands.

Consequently, you can see the experience that Marilyn has at her disposal as a musician and her latest album exhibits this perfectly. Certainly worth checking out if you fancy something a little different.

What Drink?

The craftsmanship in Marilyn’s music calls for something equally well made, like a cocktail- I’d suggest a manhattan.

Links:

https://www.facebook.com/marilyncarinomusic

https://www.twitter.com/marilyncarino

https://www.youtube.com/marilyncarino

http://www.marilyncarino.com

‘Schtum’ by Lunacre

Cambridge based band, Lunacre have released the intriguing video for their track, ‘Schtum’.

The video takes a strong stance against social media, deploring the modern world in which we live where people are obsessed with online gratification.

It follows a man walking around town with his head down, engrossed with his phone; a not uncommon sight.

The song combines beautiful acoustic guitar line with complex, yet subtle beats and crisp, clear vocals. Definitely worth a listen.

What Drink?

Due to the strong message in Lunacre’s track, I’d suggest a thoughtful glass of red with ‘Schtum’.

 

Nancy Black returns with sassy EP ‘Dirty Little Bass’

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In a music business saturated with pop starlets, Nancy Black is an independent singer-songwriter with formidable sass and style that has mesmerised audiences nationally. Having collaborated with hip hop artists Lonzo Starr and Young Rob, gained support from Major Lazor and reached number 8 on the Music Week Commercial Chart, Black has developed her own unique style for her upcoming EP ‘Dirty Little Bass’.

Watch the music video to ‘Dirty Little Bass’ here:

https://vimeo.com/187274476

The English rose meets pop princess started writing music at the age of 13 and soon formed the all-girl rock band Pink Lemons, before gaining the confidence to head out as a solo artist. From going solo Black developed her sound, having a much more commercial sound but with killer dance beats to give her music that unique edge.

‘Dirty Little Bass’ is bursting with pop anthems but with carefully crafted emotive lyrics controlling the tracks.  Black found herself writing the EP in a strange moment of euphoria, after a bad break up with a girl she fell head over heels in love with. Although a nasty break up, it led Black to grow stronger and use music as an escape from the heartbreak.

What Drink?

This definitely one for the nightclub, so I’m going to pick a classic vodka and coke!

Links:

https://soundcloud.com/nancyblackmusic

www.facebook.com/nancyblackmusic

https://www.instagram.com/nancyblackmusic/

https://twitter.come/nancyblackmusic

Get the mulled wine ready – Jon McDevitt releases contemporary, creative Christmas single ‘Father Christmas’

Geist’s former frontman and writer, Jon McDevitt, is returning with his alternative take on a festive anthem, ‘Father Christmas’.

Out today, ‘Father Christmas’ avoids the cliché of the typical Christmas song – really making people think about its meaning and thus helping them understand what Christmas is truly about.

Stream here: https://soundcloud.com/jon-mcdevitt/01-father-christmas-m1-08-09-16-01-44100hz-24bits

McDevitt’s Christmas sing-along includes thoughtful lyrics by co-writer Dominic Hudson which paint Father Christmas as a figure missing from Christmas, whilst allowing the listener to interpret it as to how or why.  An infectious melody, combined with Jon McDevitt’s harmonious vocals make for a great, catchy, Christmas single that you just cannot argue with.

Jon McDevitt has a number of local shows lined up to support the single release – you can see the full list here: http://www.jonmcdevitt.com/

What Drink?

Mulled Wine of course! Sit back, relax and get yourself in the festive spirit with the help of McDevitt’s contemporary Christmas classic.

Lenny’s Version of ‘Blueberry Hill’

Long-time singer-songwriter, Lenny Bunn, has released his own cover of the classic rock’n’roll track ‘Blueberry Hill’ and it’s certainly up there with Fats Domino and Elvis Presley renditions.

Lenny decided to record his own version of the well-known song as a dedication to his late, adopted father whose favourite song was ‘Blueberry Hill’.

There have been many covers of the song over the years since its inception in the 40s, in various different styles too, but Lenny has gone for a smooth jazz feel with his version.

Accompanying the release of the song is a live performance video of Lenny and his band members, but with one intriguing twist: each member of the band is recording their section of the song from the comfort of their own home and different studios via an internet call.

The song also features the talents of Third World Reggae Band pianist, Ibo, and the beautiful vocals of Melissa James.

As far as Lenny is concerned, the outcome of his tribute to his Dad is ‘more beautiful than ever imagined’.

What Drink?

The laid-back, breezy nature of ‘Blueberry Hill’ requires something relaxing, perhaps a classy single-malt or even a sloe gin and tonic.

 

Links:

http://www.lennybunn.uk

Toothless- ‘The Sirens’

Ed Nash, the bassist from Bombay Bicycle Club, is now pursuing his own solo career which he sees as his priority for the foreseeable future.

He has also dropped an acoustic video for his latest track, ‘The Sirens’ that features him taking it easy, playing guitar whilst lounging on a lilo in a swimming pool. This live version also includes indie-pop quartet, Flyte, providing the beautiful backing vocals.

Ed is looking to start playing more live gigs now that he has almost finished the album and then he’ll be back in the studio on the journey to making album number two.

Drink: Since this is a fairly chilled out, folky style track, like something you might hear at a festival, I think a cloudy cider would go down well with ‘The Sirens’.