Single Review – Arcade Fire – Creature Comfort

‘Creature Comfort’ is the second single from their upcoming ‘Everything Now’ album. Heavy on production, the song has a heavy synth background that has definite 80s vibes. The song is produced well with the simple tuning of the synthesizer blending with the voice of Win Butler. The style of the song is interesting, with obvious continuation from their previous album, ‘Reflektor,’ but whilst maintaining an image of something new. ‘Creature Comfort’ is a good piece f music that would definitely work well in both a nightclub setting or an independent film. ‘Creature Comfort’ definitely ups the excitement for their next album.

Matthew Johnston

This Weeks Music Video with Radiohead, HAIM, Everything Everything, The War On Drugs, Portugal. The Man & Chris Cornell

Royal Blood – How Did We Get So Dark? Review

How do you follow a hugely successful debut album, one which became the fastest-selling British rock debut back in 2014 and appeared on so many adverts and TV shows that tracks were a part of everyone’s day whether they wanted them or not? Well if you’re Brighton duo Royal Blood, you don’t mess with the formula.

After attempting to mix things up just a tiny little bit, by testing out female backing vocals and even being tempted by a touch of synth and, perish the thought, guitars, Mike Kerr and Ben Thatcher decided that a certain old cliché had lasted for a reason. Their signature sound wasn’t something to be broken but refined.

Sticking to the Royal Blood formula ‘How Did We Get So Dark’ is crafted with the same grit and focus as their 2014 debut, so pretty much exactly what you might expect, wonderfully heavy bass lines that beguile the duo format and the kind of relentless cluster-bomb percussion that sends your blood pressure rising.  

Opener and title track ‘How Did We Get So Dark’ might start things off slowly, but there’s more than a little sleazy brooding in the vein of QOTSA and Muse, building towards ‘Lights Out’ as Kerr and Thatcher continue to darken the atmosphere, this time with a little more punch and some squealed bass. ‘I Only Lie When I Love You’ struts with a curled lip and a lethal focus on intensifying the simplistic power of Mike Kerr’s distorted riffs and Ben Thatcher’s unrelenting percussion.

Things fall into a kind of shadowy stumble as ‘She’s Creeping’ and the Arctic Monkeys infused ‘Look Like You Know’ trip sulkily into your ear drums. Beginning intentionally staggered rhythms, which continue within tracks like ‘Don’t Tell’, ‘Hole In Your Heart’ and album closer ‘Sleep’, as things retreat further into the shadows, walking home after closing time in desperate jealousy engulfed insomnia. Though keeping things crawling in the darkness these tales of moody heartbreak aren’t as stirring as album highlights, such as the enigmatic return to QOTSA immersion of ‘Hook, Line & Sinker’.

Overall ‘How Did We Get so Dark’ is Royal Blood letting go of second album stress by embracing what they love. Tracks don’t really come to life through earbuds or weaved into TV trailers but are about live sets. These are about the feeling of standing in a crowd of people as Kerr’s bass and Thatcher’s drum rumble through the air around you, with the kind of visceral power that could knock you off your feet. 

Royal Blood – How Did We Get So Dark? = 8/10

Hayley Miller

Single Review – The Japanese House – 3/3

Amber Bain aka Japanese House release’s reflective third track ‘3/3’ from forthcoming EP ‘Saw You In A Dream’, set for release June 27th via Dirty Hit/Interscope. Following ‘Somebody You Found’ and title track ‘Saw You In A Dream’, with its simple but beautifully captivating video, ‘3/3’ paints the picture of losing yourself to the numbness of autopilot behaviour, despite being steeped in a disheartened air of indifference, ‘3/3’ is a gently soothing tale of fragility within an unsure relationship. Guitar chords are laced with sporadic synth to create a hazy, fluctuating wave of emotion within a tranquil atmosphere that sends you drifting into Bain’s subtle world of lucid dreaming sure to entrance her; Latitude, Lollapalooza and Reading and Leeds audiences. 
Hayley Miller

Single Review – Wolf Alice – Yuk Foo

First track from second LP ‘Visions Of A Life’, ‘Yuk Foo’ is a spite filled scream of vengeance; ‘I don’t want to be cruel, but you’re really grinding. I’m not a fool but I have a rage and it’s blinding.’ Siouxsie and the Banshees meet John Lydon in a dark alley while Black Francis throws stones, Ellie Rowsell’s, sometimes wonderfully yelped, vocals are fuelled with enough boiling, snarled anger to cut glass and reignite a nation of the disillusioned, tired and bored into a joyous form of anger that leaves you bouncing off the walls. Pushed forwards by a fearsome wall of industrial level grunge guitars and a bone shattering rhythm ‘Yuk Foo’ builds into a frenzy of twisted howls and splintered shrieks of frustration distilling everything that’s great about Wolf Alice into one of the best 2 minutes and 13 seconds of 2017.

Hayley Miller

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