Thursday 29 November 2012


Photo via

Now it's been a while since Ralph took a look at Slydigs (back in May 2012) and predicted big things for them, a month later and they'd signed a deal with Flicknife Records and have gone from strength to strength culminating in the release of their album 'Never To Be Tamed' in September 2012.

Slydigs debut single 'Electric Love' was a proper Rock 'n' Roller, get the fans jumping, sticks in your head classic tune, fast paced guitar and snappy lyrics...and the good thing is (despite everyone trotting out the usual comparisons ) I can't really compare it to anything.

Slydigs produce their own authentic brand of Indie rock.  'Electric Love' featured as the theme tune of a new US talent show by Acme Productions and was awarded video of the week on Sky music channel Lava.  

Photo via Radka Dolinska

If you're looking for a proper anthem then there's the addictive 'The Love That Keeps On Giving' with raunchy, stylish guitar playing and catchy wooo hoo hoo's, backed up by 'Never To Be Tamed', another hard punching rocker from Slydigs that's destined for bigger stages.

Photo via Radka Dolinska

They're a hard working, committed band and thoroughly deserve the success that's coming their way.  They look the part, they play their part and their music will blow you apart.  The album has to be a 'must buy' for any serious Indie rock lover's collection.

UPDATE: Big news for 2014 is of course their support The Who in December which will bring even wider recognition to the band. The December 13th gig in the Manchester Arena will be huge for these local lads!

More Who Dates Announced

Monday 26 November 2012

Bauer.....Sleeping Giant

Having been quiet for a bit other than the recently released cover of ‘Feels Like Heaven an ’80′s Electro-Pop classic by Fiction Factory from Perth, Manchester band Bauer pulled a cracker out just before Christmas when they released an album of Electro-pop classics of their own.

The album kicks of with the delightful 'Barrel One' a pacy track which flows along with smooth vocals and catchy synths followed by my personal favourite (I've been listening to it all weekend) 'Change Forever' which has club hit written all over it.  Guaranteed to be a Bauer fan anthem and has to be destined for maximum airplay.

'Never Look Back' is another example of accomplished 'poptastic' and poignant songwriting with a catchy guitar riff running through the track and that runs in to their cover of 'Feels Like Heaven' which is a smoother more grown up version of the original.  

Another track that'll prove to be a fan's favourite is the punchier 'Starting Again' which again has the 'anthemic' feel of 'Change Forever'.  There's hint's of Roxy Music and Talk Talk (especially in the track 'Connected') but if you're thinking I'm hinting at too retro than think again.  Whilst paying a homage to the electro-pop of the eighties their feel is very much of today.  With sensitive, cleverly written lyrics and solid synth-driven music they're creating their own brand of 'Synth-Pop'.

The only gig's  on the horizon at the moment are.....

March 1st Oldham - The Junction 

April 11th Manchester - Sound Control 

Sleeping Giant album celebration gig...they'll be playing the album in full plus a few other surprises...and signed CD's of the album will be available on the night.

Tickets are available from this link.....


The album is music to woo your girlfriend by so get clicking on iTunes in time for to buy it as a Valentines gift...she'll love you for it!

Album info:
Album recorded at Redbridge Studios, Battery Studios & Townhouse Studios.
Connected produced & mixed by Steve Power. Engineered by Dave Naughton
Dont You Move & Sky Turn Black mixed by Steve Power. Engineered by Neil Treppas.
Barrel one, Shotgun, Get it right, Starting again, (Feels like) heaven, Nowhere to turn, Change forever, Never look back produced and mixed by Bauer. Engineered by Neil Treppas.
Album mastered by Tim Turan.

This Weeks Top Ten Blogged Bands Chart

OK bands you know the score by now....

the more hits your blog gets by the fans, the higher up the chart you Tweet it, Facebook it.....and generally expose yourself.....

The chart is now on the interactive photo above and all you need to do is click on the links on it to check out your favourite band.....

No 1 Stolen Haven

No 2 The Flutes

No 3 Have Mercy Las Vegas

No 4 Everyday Goldfish

No 5 Boat To Row

No 6 Crystal Seagulls

No 7 The Cottonettes

No 8 Plum


No 10 Vukovi

Saturday 24 November 2012

The Fine Line Project and Rethink Mental Illness London Benefit

Without the artistes, there’d be no event…
The Fine Line Project Benefit for Rethink Mental Illness at The Troubadour Club 24/11/12

Here’s some info about the singers and musicians who are donating their time to entertain on the night and raise some much needed cash and awareness for Rethink Mental Illness.
The headline act is Black River Wild who heroically stepped into the slot at the last minute after they were let down by another act. They are doubly happy to welcome them back, particularly since they we’re smitten by their sounds, which are somewhat hard to get hold of. There's a rumour about some CDs being available at the show…

Black River Wild

What’s been said about them? “Black River Wild are a swampy urban folk-blues band delivering a stormy melting pot of foot-stomping floor fillers, plaintive ballads and captivating acoustica. 

The band blends whisky-soaked vocals and twanging guitar with mojo-cello, close-harmonies and bone rattling drums. It’s an emotionally charged sound that should not be missed!” 

Can’t say better than that..check out their sounds here then book your tickets for the show.
In the line up is Blake Robson on vocals/guitar, Kester Hynds on cello/vocals and Neil Marsh on drums.
Asked about the benefit, Black River Wild’s cellist Kester Hynds said:
“To be honest mental illness is not a question of if – but when. Just like physical illness there are different degrees. Some people are lucky in life and the worst they have to deal with is a common cold, but for others it could be something much more serious. Same with the mind. I myself have had a rocky road at times and been lucky to have professional support networks available to help me through the worst of it. Charities like Rethink and fund-raising efforts like the Fine Line Project help to increase awareness and resources and remove stigma, so it’s a pleasure to be a part of this! Let’s look after each other.”
There's some words about Matthew Neel in a previous post so here's a couple of his debut album reviews and a band pic here: ‘Snappy lyricism and black heart.. a competent and assured debut that promises much for the future’  Americana-UK; ‘The guitar playing and vocals in particular are very powerful, resembling a slightly folkier Eric Clapton, the cryptic nature of the lyrics resemble Elliot Smith and the overall playful nature of the ‘gypsy folk’ music resemble Camper Van Beethoven. All in all, this is a very interesting sound that works extremely well with Matthew’s songwriting abilities’

Matthew Neel Band
Matthew Neel’s band includes Luke Brighty on guitar, Ricky Barber on bass and Jimmy Shoo on drums.
DJ Rogue State is also back to support the Project for a second time and here’s what he has to say:

Mental health issues can affect anyone, it’s definitely a fine line. There’s a lot of stigma surrounding it all and I support The Fine Line Project as it raises money and awareness for charities that, from my own personal experience can really help.”
Rogue State

Rogue State has been producing and DJ’ing since the late 90’s, evolving with the UK underground dance scene. A pioneer of early Sheffield dubstep, 

Rogue now lives in London, continuing to move forward, blending the freshest sounds and rhythms in his own way. As one half of the management for R8 Records, he has helped establish many talented artists and residents on the crews radio show.
With critical acclaim for his releases from the likes of the Beastie Boys and Mary Anne Hobbs, Rogue continues to surprise the dance floors with rumbling riddims!
Check the music link in a previous post.

Grammy nominated singer/songwriter Leslie Mendelson, who we also wrote about in a previous post is a New York City native, currently in the UK developing her next album.
Leslie MendelsonAsked about the Troubadour benefit, she said: “Given how many people’s lives are touched by mental health issues – 1 in 4 worldwide – I’m really happy to be contributing to the Fine Line Project’s event. Because of the global recession more people and services are feeling the pressure so I think it’s especially important that we all try and play a part in supporting charities like Rethink in whatever way that we can.”

Dan Beaulaurier, who’s also from the US is now opening The Fine Line Project show.
Originally from Northern California, Dan is based in London, where he plays in the bands Norton Money and Grace Solero. His music is best filed under Americana brooding space psyched anticipation indie rock. More info at
Dan Beaulaurier London 7 February 2012

Well that just about rounds things up until tonight night at The Troubadour Club. It's going to be another fantastic Fine Line Project. If you haven’t got your tickets yet, here’s the link ! If you can’t make it, you can still donate to the cause.

Thursday 22 November 2012

The Cottonettes.....

The Cottonettes are from The Surrey/Hampshire borders and formed in February 2012. Likened in style to The Jam, The Clash and The Vaccines by some or The Chameleons and House of Love by others with maybe a hint of Sham 69 and John Ottway chucked in for good measure. 

The Cottonettes are..... Ben Madle, Josh Young and Marty Dixon 

Over the course of many years Ben had written many songs, usually about his travels around Europe and encounters with different characters. During this time he would see many new bands come and go until he decided that the songs he had penned were actually pretty good and there was no reason his songs couldn't be just as popular. So he sought out some musicians to join his band.

Ben and Josh had known each other for 10 years through the local music scene and occasionally had casual chats about starting a band since they were 17. Only this time it actually happened. Following Josh’s New Year's resolution to do something interesting in 2012 he decided to take Ben’s New Year approach with great enthusiasm. After hearing some rough recordings of Ben’s songs Josh saw the potential and shared Ben’s belief in his music and immediately signed up as the band’s bassist. 

After rattling through a few songs over the following weeks it was time to find a drummer.  Enter Marty who describes himself as a 28 year old eligible bachelor whose drumming has been described as 'genius' and his musical influences include Dive Dive, and Ben Folds Five.

Josh is the bassist and first started playing in bands back in 2003-2006 most noticeably in a band called In The Dark. He is a follower of fashion and is known for his 'interesting' style. His main musical influences come from bands like The Cure, Biffy Clyro and Bloc Party.

Ben is the guitarist, singer and main songwriter.  Much like Josh he played in bands back in the same era, notably a band called Sucka. His musical influences range from people like Graham Coxon, The Clash, and The Jam.

Josh knew Marty since their college days and had also attempted to start bands with Marty. He had just a month before left the Royal Navy and he was the obvious choice as a drummer. Marty enjoyed the songs and loved being behind the drum kit thus The Cottonettes were born.

Since that first practice they have written a set of energetic catchy pop flavoured punk/rock songs, which they energetically tear through at some of the most well known venues in the UK. 

Track The Cottonettes Notify me when The Cottonettes comes to town.

Wednesday 21 November 2012

Have Mercy Las Vegas

Have Mercy Las Vegas were the third and final of Ralph's trio of lively and energetic folk/rock bands reviewed back in November of last year. They're causing a bit of a stir on the Glasgow music scene with their unique sound, which although largely folk and blues based, is hard to pin down exactly as they appeal to a wider audience with every gig. Each band member adds a different style, resulting in great original songs performed with great enthusiasm and passion making them a must see live band.

Well the good news is Have Mercy Las Vegas have just released a new single - 'Pappy' - mixed and produced by Matt Harvey at Maybank Studios in Glasgow.  It's a complete foot stomper guaranteed to be a favourite at gigs (I'm assuming they'll have played it last night at King Tut's in Glasgow) with it's Cajun-esque folk/rock vibe.  It's frenetic strings guarantee you're heads bobbing and toes are tapping throughout.  It's everything a single should be and Ralph'll be spinning it on his Radio KC show this weekend again!

The summer of 2012 saw the release of their Debut EP, entitled HMLV, which has been well received by respected musical personalities and their ever increasing fanbase. The band worked tirelessly over the summer of 2012, making debut appearances at the Wickerman and Disconnect festivals, whilst playing to packed out audiences at Eden and Loch Lomond festivals. They also played numerous other local festivals and venues across the West of Scotland and further affiield.

Their appearances for the remainder of 2012 were few and far between as they took time out to put the finishing touches to the debut album released in early 2013. To date they have been featured on numerous radio stations, including Radio Clyde, Amazing Radio and Celtic Music Radio, and their songs "Snakes and Horses" and "Tear To My Eye" both entered the top ten entries in Scottish New Music Charts. Tear to My Eye reached number 3 in last Septembers chart.

Have Mercy Las Vegas are..... 

Crispin McAlpine - Guitar, Harmonica, Lead Vocals, Accordion, Ukelele

Eilidh Trotter - Guitar, Lead Vocals, Ukelele

Stephen Scott - Banjo, Backing Vocals, mandolin, Harmonium

Marc McLean - Bass, Guitar, Backing Vocal

Phil Plunkett - Drums, Djembe, Backing Vocal

Andrew Napier - Fiddle

Upcoming gigs.....

Eden Festival Masked Ball     Cumbria            1.11.13

St Augustine's Church            Dumbarton        8.11.13

Butterfly and Pig                    Glasgow            15.11.13

The Doghouse                        Balloch             16.11.13

Ayr Gaiety                               Ayr                    29.11.13

Dram                                       Glasgow           Hogmanay!