Curated by DJ Astrocreep
Ushering in the new year (albeit a bit belatedly) the way we know best, with yet another Singles Club feature, and it falls to DJ Astrocreep to make his selections… though he really wished that the over 500 submissions were not so competitive as to make it so hard for him! It’s time to pour yourself a large one, kick back and enjoy what our resident DJ has selected from a huge bag of tricks as the soundtrack for our virtual speakeasy on this occasion.
Let’s start with a band we on the site are well versed with in the form of Midnite City as they are ‘Crawlin’ In The Dirt’ with their latest single. With sing-along choruses this good, their feel good melodic AOR shows all the hallmarks of the talent their members have shown across the years is still in abundance!
The Pretty Reckless may have developed a reputation for being among the foremost alt-rock artists of the last 10 or so years or so but they seem to have created something of a monster, decorated somewhat in lace for the somewhat more melodic bits, with their latest effort ‘And So It Went’, though with the featuring of legendary guitarist Tom Morello this is not as much of a surprise, maybe. A fantastic effort that seems like it may be aimed at a certain outgoing world leader in its lyrical style!
Taking a turn to the heavy now, we have Mancunian groove-sludgers Barbarian Hermit – admittedly already a personal favourite – with ‘Through The Periscope Of The Deadly Sub’ as they promo the re-release of their debut album. Full of their usual downtuned, monolithic groove, this is going to give myself and many many more plenty of whiplash in live settings to come!
Norwegian hardcore artists Shevils are back with another single, ‘Monsters On TV’, kicking up an unruly, in your face wall of noise that leaves unable to help feeling pumped up, full of energy and ready to riot!
…Of Concrete Gods are a bit of a strange one – in a positive sense, of course – with their latest single ‘Good Samaritan’ sounding like Alice in Chains decided it was time to try and emulate Lamb of God! Full of riffs, varying vocal styles and an extremely catchy track that is mercilessly earworming me as I try to continue this roundup!
Stepping down a touch from the above, we still have plenty of energy from 24/7 DIVA HEAVEN, with the ‘Bitter Lollipop’ they are sharing from their upcoming debut sounding like it owes as much to the likes of L7 as to Bikini Kill in a heavy grunge-punk/wall of noise style! As they themselves say, without shame, they’re here to, “FUCK IT UP!”
AFI have been around a long while and while it may have been approaching 20 years since fan anthem ‘Girl’s Not Grey’, they’re still going strong, as demonstrated in their latest effort, ‘Escape From Los Angeles’. All the melody and alt-punk action you’d expect from the early 2000s heroes remains and shows they’re as ready to rock you as ever!
Hayley and the Crushers are readying the sermon in their ‘Church of Flag’ in their latest punk ‘n’ roll effort, combining a softer vocal style that still has all the balls you’d want from the genre with plenty of appeal for both those more into their rock side as well as punk – finely crafted and just about teetering along that perfect line between the two that will keep you compulsively wanting to drive with your foot right down!
Up and coming post-punkers Honey Lung have another track that is ‘Oh So Real’ and continues what seems to be another strong showing from one of Britain’s leading lights in the current wave of post-punk outfits, with another distorted, fuzzy mishmash of sonic brilliance.
Some heavy psych now from LA stoner rocks Karma Vulture, who have not exactly given us ‘The Gift Of Nothing’ with their latest single. An anthemic sounding heavy blues/stoner track that sounds like it would fit in well alongside some of the Mojave’s best desert rock acts with that fuzzy early Queens of the Stone age appeal.
Aussie rockers Wicked Smile are a chip off the melodic metal block, with ‘Killer At Large’ sounding like it would fit in seamlessly, vocally and musically, to the likes of such classics as ‘Operation: Mindcrime’ – high praise indeed that their talents are very worth of!
The Limit may not be known to you offhand, but some of their related bands may be – The Stooges, Pentagram and Testors, to mention but three – with their debut single ‘Black Sea’ being a punk ‘n’ roll track as fine as you’re likely to hear either in the past or present.
Ok, time for that palette cleanser track now, with some highly melodic indie-rock now from Mancunian act Pale Waves, who make their music sound all so ‘Easy’ on the ear. Yet another highly approachable, ready for a huge audience track from the ever-rising rockers!
While we are on the whole highly melodic, anthemic sound, there will almost always be room for anything Roine Stolt related, as The Flower Kings have their latest single ‘Black Swan’. The usual hallmarks of ridiculous levels of talent across the board – in melody, in songwriting and musicianship – there’s a good reason Roine and company are so highly rated!
A debut single up next with One Last Day, a melodic metal track that showcases an interesting blend of softer sounds into something rather more frantic and heavy – never mind being ‘Not Ready to Die’, these talented guys should be preparing to live it large!
Tomahawk are one of those cult bands that I just truly cannot help but love. Experimental sounds, Mike Patton vocals combine with a menacing soundtrack – ‘Business Casual’ is another bass-driven track that comes in, takes a shit on your desk and leaves – you just cannot help but notice it whatever your feelings about them may be!
Taking on from there with have Danish post-hardcore act Siamese that relies as much on a mishmash autotune and clean vocals that are ably carried along by an anthemic chorus and able musicianship – how have these guys not broken into a wider knowledge here before now?
Pyjama Planet have to be one of South Africa’s best-kept secrets, with their latest single ‘Storm The Gates’, truly living up to its name with their instrumental symphonic heavy rock! Plenty of tempo, ability, and highly charged riffs create a sound that verges on experimental at times without ever losing its grip!
Aussie prog metallers Voyager are back, letting us know that ‘This Boy’s In Love’ with their latest melody fuelled opus. A strong guitar hook alongside atmospheric keys and vocals and a driving rhythm section make for a gorgeous, soaring sounding sonic delight.
Slowing the pace down now, we have the epic ‘Skugge (Shadow)’ from pagan metal outfit Wardruna, with a strong Nordic shamanic atmosphere reverberating heavily throughout this stunning epic.
Our penultimate track sees us sit back and just admire the talents of Steve Hackett in ‘Sirocco’, the third sumptuous track from ‘Under A Mediterranean Sky’. Guitar playing, atmospheric harmonies and symphonic afrobeat merge into one hell of an expertly crafted prog track from the legendary guitarist.
For our curtain call of this edition of the Singles Club, we have Kiwi Jr., who we covered recently, with the feel-good melodies of ‘Waiting In Line’. Incorporating in melodic rock, bits of punk and retro psych in a manner similar to Elvis Costello’s ‘Oliver’s Army’, it’s the perfect vibe to close the doors on. Enjoy!
Well, that’s your lot for this iteration of the Singles Club. Yet again, we’ve drunk the pumps dry and the optics are running low, so it’s time to neck the dregs and feck off to enjoy what’s left of this Sunday afternoon sunshine. We hope you agree that it has been another eclectic collection, and that you found something to tickle your earbuds and drive you to explore some new musical horizons. Until next time, when our hooded leader Monk once again will be inserting his headphones under his cowl to take his place behind the death decks, keep ‘er lit, keep ‘er between the hedges and #StayTheFuckSafe!
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