Tag Archives: album

Top 5 Album Releases Of 2020

2020 has been quite the odd year. During a normal time, I’d usually be doing more write ups, but this year has been a bit turbulent. There’s been an Earth stopping pandemic, protests, elections and more. The result of all of this has had a considerable effect on musicians, DJ’s, creatives and artists across the world. Not to mention the clubs and venues in which they performed in.

Indeed, there is no certainty for when life will return to a sense of pre-pandemic normalcy. Hopefully, the favorite haunts of memorable concerts will still be around, and there will be dance halls for those fond of the twist and pogo to congregate at again. Only time will tell.

However, despite these wild and unpredictable events, the music manages to live on. This year still saw releases by many notable artists. Almost too many to count. For 2020, I have chosen the records by Faz Waltz, Bad Nerves, The Speedways, Jacob T Skeen and Worst Horse as my top 5 releases for this year. Enjoy!

Faz WaltzRebel Kicks

Since 2007, Faz Waltz have been releasing hit maker records meant for another era. Each one of their new albums are tighter than the last. However, their 7th album Rebel Kicks is the Crème de la crème. Released on a pandemic ridden world this is music that uplifts and provides a much needed relief. Within this records grooves fans will hear the familiar influences of T-Rex  and David Bowie glam twisting the night away with late Beatles inspired rock n’ roll. Rebel Kick’s superbly demonstrates Faz Waltz’s maturing style and masterful pop-sensible hooks that makes their unique take on a 1970’s inspired rock n’ roll sound.

For the full review, click here!

Bad NervesSelf-Titled

Admittedly, I did not provide a write up for the Bad Nerves record. No doubt about it though, something about this record stuck like glue. Upon hearing the tracks on this release there is no shame by suggesting that it blew apart my rock n’ roll world.  These cats do what The Briefs did, but faster and with an impressively infectious intensity that few can dare match. This is the kind of music that jumping about like an idiot mixed up on a cocktail of formal one fuel is made for. If you like it was razer sharp riffs, high voltage vocals and of course electro-centric punk infused power pop, Bad Nerves are essential for you. Top tracks for consideration are “Baby Drummer,” “Can’t Be Mine,” and “Dreaming Boy.”

The Speedways Radio Sounds



NixBeat: What was the process like writing and recording Radio Sounds? How was it different than the work you did with Just Another Regular Summer?

Matthew: A fair few of the songs on Radio Sounds I’d already written around the time of Just Another Regular Summer. I also dug into my song book for older tunes like “This Aint A Radio Sound” and “Good Girls Don’t Break Hearts” ..then there were new songs that I wrote as a response to the first album – “In A World Without Love It’s Hard To Stay Young..,” “Daydreaming,” “Brown Eyes Look So Blue..,” “This Is About Girl Who Loves The Sun” etc.. So the writing process was more varied than the first record. Obviously with it being a full band this time there was a collaborative effort in terms of arrangement and individual parts which definitely gave the songs more of a band vibe than before. It’s much more satisfying as a song writer to hear other musicians play and interpret your stuff than to do everything yourself. It makes such a difference. Everyone contributed brilliantly in the studio too (including Jez who produced the album). I enjoyed making it & working with everyone. It turned out really well. A step up in quality for sure.

Jacob T Skeen Death, Thou Shalt Die

Listeners of this record ought to be warned that it is not uncommon to feel a staggering malevolence, as though the cold hand of death has drifted over your heart and into your soul.  The first track, “Elizabeth Felt Payne” captures this essence by luring the unwary listening into the depths of the demented. It’s defined by the wailing razor sharp riffs and Skeen’s booming vocals. This is distorted doom blues at its finest.

Read the full article here!

Worst HorseSelf-Titled

The album as a whole is a trip. It’s got the psychedelic notions that with under the right conditions will evoke a out of mind experience. Songs like “Let The Pain In” carry on the introspective nature that defines this work. It’s mellow, but subtly provoking. This is the same with the track “House of Bees.” Though in contrast, this song has more of the dissociated feel that is also found in Worst Horse.

For the full article click here!

Top 5 Albums of 2016


1. Suicide Helpline — Self Titled EP
“Suicide Helpline initially come across with catchy rock n’ roll that speaks of ‘60s garage rock, but then maintain a firm, raw attitude that harkens on socio-political stances found in that of ‘70’s punk mentality. Unlike others who profess the genre , this four tracks on this EP deliver with a certain and charming diversity in style.”

2. Gloria — In Excelsis Stereo
“In Excelsis Stereo is the perfect album to invoke feelings of reflection. This is because Gloria brings an almost unique a mid-tempo sound that is combined with harmonious vocals to stimulate the mind.”

3. The Monsters — THE JUNGLE NOISE RECORDINGS
“The Jungle Noise Recordings should be considered an essential part of any angsty rock n’ roller’s collection, especially if said individual is still completely able to pride themselves on being full of piss and foul-smelling vinegar. Make no mistake: This album exudes an attitude that exemplifies the dirty thrash-driven desires of gutter-inhabiting rock n’ roll.”

4. La femme — MYSTÈRE
“In its entirety, the record is a ride that initially must be experienced from start to finish. It’s an expedition that guides the forever curious mind through all things vibrant and intriguing.”

5. Hannah Wiliams and The Affirmations — LATE NIGHTS & HEARTBREAKS
“Hannah Williams & The Affirmations are a group whose power to inspire through music is stunning. Certainly, their style is one that begs for familiarity but never fails in their delivery of substance.”


Top 5 Honorable Mentions

1. Fashionism — Subculture Suicide 7”
2.Ivory Williams — Don’t Have To Worry 7”
3. The Wead – By The Whey
4.Rumble Gums — Pool Party Palace
5.The Missing Souls: Alligator/Sweet, Sweet Sadie 7-inch

REVIEW: THE WHEEL WORKERS – CITIZENS


The Wheel Workers
Citizens
ZenHill Records
Street: 05.25
The Wheel Workers = Joe Strummer and Mescaleros + Woody Guthrie

Generations of artists seeking to voice dissatisfaction with the status quo laid out a heritage of sociopolitical consciousness, and when they supercharge those nuances with the ferocity of rock n’ roll, it usually comes across with sheer brilliance.

Dig the full album review @ SLUG MAG!!

Review: Miscalculations – A View For Glass Eyes

Miscalculations= Wire+ The Cute Lepers+ The Gaggers+ Sharp Objects

There are many groups that sound too much alike and too many that lack that punk punchy angst-filled attitude that makes my blood boil into a creative rage. For me, Miscalculations are the much noted and needed exception. Sharp like a razorblade’s edge, the electro-punk quartet, the Miscalculations, are an electrifying field of distorted passionate fury of agitated post-punk brilliance.

Dig the full album review @ Heatwave Mag!!

REVIEW: BOB DYLAN – SHADOWS IN THE NIGHT

Bob Dylan
Shadows in the Night
Columbia Records
Street: 02.03
Bob Dylan = Bob Dylan


Bob Dylan’s 36th studio album is covers of Frank Sinatra pop standards—all chosen by Dylan. After spinning this, I have to wonder whether or not there are still signs of vitality in the genius of this artist or if it has packed up and left the building.

Read the whole review @SLUG MAG!!

REVIEW: THE SKINTS – FM

The Skints
FM
Easy Star Records
Street: 03.10
The Skints = Jimmy Cliff + Barrington Levy + Mikey Dread + The King Blues


FM is styled like listening to a London-based pirate radio station—complete with DJ Mr. Versatile (the alter ego of Tippa Irie) and simulated station call-ins—on the city’s hottest day.

Read the full review @ SLUG MAG!

REVIEW: MONORCHIST – MEMORIES TO KILL EP

Monorchist
Memories to Kill EP
Self-Released
Street: 08.15.14 Monorchist = The Gits + Vice Squad


Monorchist came back after a lengthy hiatus and wasted little time getting into the game as they broke slightly past their punk roots and into a more hard rock n’ roll sound.

Read the full review @ SLUG MAG!

REVIEW: J.P. WHIPPLE – THINKING OF YOU…STARING AT THE POWER LINES

J.P. Whipple
Thinking of you…Staring at the Power Lines
Self-Released
Street: 07.18.14
J.P. Whipple = Slug Guts + Muddy Waters


Thinking of you…Staring at the Power Lines is the lovely combination of prominent banjo playing, gothic folk, a dash of psychedelia and haunted vocals wrapped into a brilliantly unique, dark, vintage sound.

Read the full review @ SLUG MAG!