Drag the lake...

...you'll find it full of love.

LISTEN TO Every Time I Die.

Fierce and black-hearted lyrics humping a fast and furious metalcore din that was good for an EP and an album and almost perfect for last album round, 'Hot Damn!'.
The Ferret/Roadrunner Records punk'n'puke metallers have gone through bassists like other bands go through drummers and hi-jacked Daryl Palumbo to bring you their new album 'Gutter Phenomenon', out August 22nd. Hear a track from it here, go see them here.
Let them change your mind


BUKANDSKIT FESTIVAL 2. Reading Abbey RFC, Reading. 19.06.05

It starts as a distant buzzing, like maybe there's a wasp in the car that you can't see.

Then it's more.

There's a bassy rumble, relentless banging and flashing lights.

Through the pollen haze of a sun cracked field in the middle of Reading comes the sound of loud music and the smell of overpriced beer and burning burgers. A festival is disturbing the peace in Reading but it's not the one you're thinking of.

The BukandSkit festival, a one-day, two-stage event is celebrating its second year today. The event is something of a renaissance day for British bands- Biffy Clyro and Capdown are headlining- and a genuine showcase for local talent- Reading bands open both stages.

The line up reads like a 'who's who' of the UK underground and as an introduction to the day TwinZero's crash site rumble is an ugly early-afternoon wake up call. Karl Middleton leads his merry men through a set of metallic pounding punctuated by razer sharp riffing and tribal tattoos.

Thirteen fulfill every prophecy of their name and suffer the first bad luck of the day- it's kinda hard to play your cymbals when they're at home. But after a mad dash to borrow some equipment they get to play their very now sounding poppy rock but push everyone's stage times back.

But the show must go on.

For Reuben- who transform their normally sedate grunge into sunshine-magnet festival rock- and Oceansize it must go on a little longer than expected when news filters through that Million Dead have broken down in Italy.

Sylosis have recruited Jor's old singer and seemingly pirated his confidence too. Their old school thrash and new style metal mix finally looks good enough to break into bigger leagues, the majors will soon come knocking.

Sikth are on form. There was a worry about how much of the truly awful new stuff they would play but only one song, 'The Death of a Dead Day', is aired and isn't half bad after all. Despite the blistering heat the first real mosh goes to Sikth and a belting version of 'Hold my Finger'.

Inside, on the second stage, it's like standing in an oven but Eden Maine play a blinder. Towering examples of aggressive, progressive mood music like an awesome 'The Hunter and the Hunted' and 'Hail Satan!' shimmer and flex in the heat. Their frontman all handclaps and dancing feet one minute, a flailing storm of plaid and hair the next.

This Girl have to face off main stage competition from Biffy Clyro and the advance of time as last trains and buses beckon but maintain an edge that people never seem to understand and the man will never pay enough money for.
People keep leaving but the band keep playing the good time rock'n'roll they make their own, even turning the mediocre material from their most recent album into hummable quirky perfection.

People are going home tired but happy, BukandSkit 2 has most definitely been a success and proven the British rock scene to be alive and well. As if we ever had a doubt.

Roll on next year.


TEAM SLEEP+Idiot Pilot. Mean Fiddler, London. 17.06.05

Team Sleep are loud. Really loud. Probably the loudest 'quiet' band you've ever heard.

The band throw out grooves other bands would kill for and when they lock together they make a sound like demolition.

No matter what they sounded like Team Sleep would've won tonights crowd over but supporting band Idiot Pilot are fighting that battle from first note to last. Y'see no one in Idiot Pilot is Chino Moreno.

For a two piece the band max out the volume just as well as the headliners but rather than building to their crescendos they commit sudden stop starts of drum machine and screams. If you need a reference point, think Radiohead but think Martin Grech rather than Muse.

Towards the end of their set most of the crowd is nodding its head and the band seem to be having fun and happy to be making friends. Hopefully friends who will buy their records.

As a parting shot one of the skinny duo extols the virtues of the Team Sleep album and asks how many people have it. In the middle of a sold out Mean Fiddler maybe 30 people raise their hands.

And there's the rub...

Most everyone seems to be here for a quick Deftones fix rather than a headfirst dive into something altogether new. After Idiot Pilot's dramatic and unexpectedly fantastic turn you feel were it not for Chino Moreno's prescence the running order tonight would be the other way around. Team Sleep have a lot to prove.

And they are by no means perfect- the drums clatter and jar, loose jams come off without point or promise and Rob Crow's beautiful vocal additions are inaudible, which on a song like 'Our Ride to the Rectory' is criminal.

However, they are special. Chino is as an engaging frontman as always and his band feel cohesive and familiar- a far cry from a bunch of hired hands. The songs feel louder, heavier even, and perfect moments like Chino's wail on the beginning of 'Red Skull' are there to be savoured.

Those looking for some Deftones adrenaline get it, but those looking for something more find that too. Tonight was about a good band playing good songs and what else is there.



'Hours' sounds like Funeral for a Friend.

Despite its resounding success there's no denying that for every perfect pop song on 'Casually Dressed...' there was a weak studio track of emo-fodder filler.

'Hours' is apparently something of a gut reaction to the ten-word-titled songs about girls of their debut but the ghost of that record haunts this one.

The galloping pop rock guitars, 80's metal licks and sing-a-long choruses are all present and correct but this isn't an attempt to maintain fame and fortune by cooking with the same ingredients.

The first few tracks are real reminders of FFAF's uncanny Nirvana-like knack of writing songs you've never heard that feel like you know every word. 'All the Rage' blows away the cobwebs before the charging riff of first single 'Streetcar' ploughs past in three minutes of music made for the air guitar. Unfortunately it ploughs to nowhere.

'Drive' and 'History' are slower, almost acoustic, tracks where Matt Davies sounds like Fred Durst and the band sound like Bon Jovi. And if that can be ignored the absolute banality of the songs cannot. There are good ideas here but no matter how shiny the production, one good idea does not make a song.

Rather fittingly 'Recovery' marks a return to form that remains until the album closes. 'The End of Nothing' is the heaviest track here- complete with guitar noodles, aggressive vocals and the albums darkest lyrics. It works as a real tonic to the weaker middle section.

'Alvarez' sounds like Alexisonfire, maybe because it has a little of the high life and joy in it that that band has made their trademark, life and joy that makes a mark in few other places here.

'Hours' is a fine release but nowhere near perfect. 'Hours' is an album one half towering rock songs and pop genius and one half instantly forgettable filler and plain mediocrity.

Like I said, 'Hours' sounds like Funeral for a Friend.