Curated by Monk
Well, with a few exceptions, the pathway out of the dark tunnel that has been the past 16 months finally seems to be getting clearer day by day, as we slowly take those vital steps back to at least a semblance of the normality we enjoyed before the pandemic wrecked chaos on our collective and individual lives. Yes, there are still some restrictions in place in many parts of the Über Kingdom (not least in Northern Ireland, where indoor gigs remain band for the foreseeable future), but at least there is light on the horizon – and it’s not just ‘cos we’re being blessed with a rare bright summer!
One constant throughout the vagaries of inconsistent and often hard to stomach lockdowns has that the ÜR Singles Club has remained open for (virtual) business throughout, bringing you our selection of what we regard as the best new sounds to have come our way every fortnight – with a few special events thrown in for good measure! So, it’s time to once again fire up the death decks and see what joyous gems the past fortnight has brought our way…
Hold on, we might have a technical problem, as I hear a ‘Hum’ in the speakers… oh, that’s OK, it’s only New York alt-rock trio Young Culture and their breezy, poppy, summery new single, which is extracted from their recently released self-titled debut album:
Another trio, albeit of a slightly heavier mien, in the form of Bokassa, who have been building a solid reputation over the past few years with their exciting melding of punk and stoner. New single, ‘Careless (In The Age Of Altruism)’ is a further consolidation of their impressive sound, with a crunchy main riff that will rip your head off at 40 paces. It’s the first track to be taken from their forthcoming third album, the brilliantly titled ‘Molotov Rocktail’, which is being released at the beginning of September and will be followed by a run of ÜK tour dates the following month:
Next up, Bristol combo Novatines are taking us on a high-octane, politically-charged ‘Joyride’, on which the band send out a clarion call against what they describe as “the sheer corruption, greed and contempt that the ruling elite has over the world”:
Another call to arms, but of a different crowd, as Employed To Serve remind us what it is like to ‘Exist’ with the uncompromising and venomously vibrant lead single from their forthcoming new album, ‘Conquering’, which is due to hit with the impact of a planet-destroying meteorite on 17 September. ETS have also been confirmed for one of the most heavyweight tours of 2022, when they will open for Gojira on their European run next March:
We’re keeping it heavy – in fact, this is probably the heaviest edition of the Club in quite some time – as Blood Youth take the term “emotional hardcore” to a whole new level with their cathartic and claustrophobic new single, which sees them hooking us up to an ‘Iron Lung’ and then pummelling our helpless bodies into bloodied submission:
OK, we’re going to ease of the pedal for a few moments, as we light ourselves up with some ‘Flourescent’ light, courtesy of Californian psychedelic new wavers Switchfoot, who combine elements of classic rock with darkwave and ‘60s-style SoCal summeriness into an atmospheric and highly interesting sound:
We’re heading back to the Über Kingdom for our next round of acts, starting off with the chilled-out ska punk vibes of Skinny Lister, who really have catapulted themselves into our collective consciences so far this year, and no doubt they’ll continue to do so, with the help of this new single, which sees them recall a rather hairy encounter with the local constabulary while on tour in Germany, and an extensive run of dates planned for November and December:
We’re heading back to UR’s birthplace now, where we’re ripping up a ‘Storm’ with Welsh NWoCRers Scarlet Rebels, who have delivered us of another slice of full throttle, no nonsense rock ‘n’ roll with this first taster of their new album… but, unfortunately we’ll have to wait until the end of January for that, so in the meantime we better buckle up and strap ourselves in for the ride…
We’re taking a trip to the realm of Planet Fatale… well, actually, they hail from down Cambridge way, from where they are busting out with plenty of rock ‘n’ roll attitude, accompanied by some rather tasty riffs and melodies, which combine heaviness and infectious groove with ease, as they prove on this, their latest single, which should ensure that they won’t be talking to themselves (sic) for too much longer:
Well, seeing as the continued easing of restrictions means that we can ‘Dance Around’ once again, we might as well do so… and what better soundtrack than this, the debut single from The Hot Damn! The band were formed out of the ashes of ÜR faves The Amorettes and Tequila Mockingbyrd, and they’re definitely hitting the ground running (or, should we say, dancing?) with this infectious opening salvo, which is also featured on the forthcoming ‘New Wave Of Classic Rock’ double CD sampler:
We’re heading over to Canada now, where we meet up with the original “metal queen”… we’re talking, of course, about Lee Aaron, who is ‘Vampin’’ it up with this sultry but hard-hitting third single from her forthcoming new album, on which she proves she permanently has her ‘Radio On!’:
We’re going to heavy things up again in a minute, with some serious hardcore, metal and punk action, but first we’re going to enter the space rock world of French prog-psych storytellers Little Jimi, who have invited us to join them for a ‘Palace Afternoon’ and immerse ourselves in the epic third track to be lifted from their forthcoming concept album, ‘The Cantos’:
OK, we promised things were going to get heavy again, and who better to help us do just that than LA metal influencers Armored Saint, who are sharing with us the tale of the ‘Lone Wolf’ as the latest single to be extracted from last year’s massive ‘Punching The Sky’ album:
Fancy some “angry music for happy people”? Well, that’s exactly what you get with August Burns Red, who have spent their career producing just that, as they continue to prove with this ‘Bloodletter’, another song from an album released last year, ‘Guardians’:
Some fast ‘n’ furious punk rock action for your listening pleasure now, as we jump right back into the archive but also come smack up to date with the Noo Yawk underground legends who are the Descendents… The quartet have spent lockdown re-recording their iconic ‘9th & Walnut’ album, featuring songs originally written in the band’s nascent years – including their declaration that they like the way they know, in the form of this revisiting of one of the first punk blasts (it’s just 56 seconds long) they ever wrote:
As Kevin looks up from his crossword to call last orders, that can only mean that it’s time to get in the ring (sic) for some ‘MMA’ action, as provided by New Zealand alt-punks Voodoo Bloo, and this raucous exploration of the subject of teenage subject, a theme which runs through the band’s debut album, ‘Jacobus’…
So, the pumps are nearly dry, as are the optics, which means it’s almost time to get the fuck out of here… but, before we do so, we have one more merry tune to send you on your way – and it comes from those lunatic Italians and Singles Club regulars Nanowar Of Steel. Hey, we all need a heavy dose of silliness now and again, and, let’s face it, they don’t come much more silly than a bunch of heavily warmed arguing over the best recipe for polenta… do they?
Well, that’s your lot for latest 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 take a break to restock the bar and recharge the batteries before delving headlong back into the rock ‘n’ roll action in two weeks’ time, when the big lad by the name of Astrocreep once again (hopefully) will be beaming down from some mysterious corner of the Überverse to take charge of the deathdecks and bringing you some of the hottest new sounds from around this hoary old rock ‘n’ roll planet… Until then, keep ‘er lit, keep ‘er between the hedges and #StayTheFuckSafe!
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