Fictionist are an Electro-pop / rock band from Provo, Utah. Band members Aaron Anderson, Robbie Connolly, Brandon Kitterman, Stuart Maxfield have shared the stage with Imagine Dragons and Vampire Weekend, and are now back with their latest record ‘Free Spirit’.
‘Free Spirit’ is an uplifting and vibrant track with an electro-pop sound and bursting with sunny vibes. This dance worthy pop track was made for blasting through your speakers on a hot sunny day. Full of cool tones conveyed in the fresh airy echo vocal accompanied by shimmering synths, energetic beats and radiant guitars. Its infectious chorus will have you singing along and dancing in no time.
Stream ‘Free Spirit’ below
We headed out to the Olympia early to get a feel of the atmosphere and see what the fans of Catfish and The Bottlemen were thinking and expecting after the year long wait for the Indie bands return. One obvious change was of course that the show last year was 18s and over and this year I found myself walking along a queue of fresh young faces (most of those I asked told me they were 16 and 17 years old) all eager and excited, some of them had been sitting there since 6 am! just to see a glimpse of the band. When finally they do see them the screams and frenzy caused by their arrival was immense. The band entered the venue in twos separated by about an hour or so. Van, being the last to enter the venue stopped to take pictures with his adoring fans. When finally that was over everyone resumed their positions in the queue to reflect and to my surprise cry with joy.
The support act came from The Crookes who gave an amazing energetic performance that loosened up the stiff hips from the long wait in the queue and impressed the crowd for their first gig in Ireland. With bouncing tunes and the bright lustrous guitars in ‘After Glow’ and the infectious upbeat ‘The World Is Waiting’ that had everyone bopping along as frontman George Waite performed with an Elvis Costello swagger and energy. Every song followed smoothly and went down a treat with the audience. They swayed and danced perfectly contented with the beaming radiant tunes as they joined in with the “crowd friendly” clapping bridge of ‘Backstreet Lovers’. Their new track ‘Real Life’ went down particularly well with the crowd. The girl beside me turned to her friend and yelled “Oh my god I love these guys!” I wouldn’t be surprised if they have a strong Irish following after Monday nights performance.
After a brief intermission Catfish and The Bottlemen explode onto the stage with flashing lights and full of energy as adoring fans scream. While they blast into ‘Rango’ frontman Van McCann shows of his confidence and swagger with every guitar pose and strut. Everyone is in awe of this larger than life character. Not even a trip over a guitar lead can take him off his stride. The performance is well rehearsed with dramatic strobe lighting that excites the crowd and draws them into every beat and strum. They hold everyone’s attention from the energetic’Homesick’ and frantic ’26’ to the acoustic ‘Hourglass’ and with one command get everyone in the balcony up jumping and dancing. The fans bellow out the lyrics as McCann stands back to hear his fans serenade him. To which he humbly thanks them, reminding us of the down to earth sweet guys we met last year. They blast back into some huge tunes and give us a sneak peak at tracks on their forthcoming album, before finishing as they did last year with the fiery ‘Tyrants’ that ends the show on an explosive note leaving everyone wanting more.
Catfish and The Bottlemen have evolved immensely since we saw them last year at the Academy. The gig at the Academy was savage, it had a raw, fresh atmosphere. You could tell Catfish and the Bottlemen were “diamonds in the rough” as they brought something different and exciting to the indie scene. One year on we see them more polished and rehearsed but still energetic and arena worthy. McCann has developed a frontman swagger that captivates the crowd. This it definitely a band that will stand the test of time.
The Cradles are a five piece rock band from Cardiff. Band members Joe Norman (Vocals), Kieran O’Brien (Lead Guitar), Declan Andrews (Drums), Luke Haines (Bass Guitar) and Toby Andrews (Guitar) have created a catchy 60s style sound that is unique. They have been championed by Tom Robinson, received BBC Radio 6 airplay and have a number of sell out shows and support slots with The Bohicas, Pretty Vicious and The Ordinary Boys under their belt.
Their New single ‘You Can’t Stop Thinking About Me’ which will be released 29 th July is a catchy melodic track that is smooth and instrumentally innovative. Its sleek gentle guitar riff draws you in and makes this song extremely attractive. The guitar runs along in the background of the verses giving a free airy vibe. While Normans vocals are simple, gentle and effortless making this song so easy to listen to. The delicate elastic beat gives a bendy quality to the track that persuades your body to sway and bop along with it. The guitar solo has a melancholy tone which gives a sweet nostalgic dreamy feel to the track with a soft beat behind it.
‘You Can’t Stop Thinking About Me’ is an infectious innovative track that shows The Cradles have great potential.
Stream ‘You Can’t Stop Thinking About Me’ below
Our Worth A Listen track this week is Johnny Llyod’s ‘Pilgrims’
‘Pilgrims’ is the new track from London musician and former Tribes frontman Johnny Lloyd’s début EP. This follows the amazing ‘Hello Death’ which we did a feature on last month. ‘Pilgrims’ is a swoony, hazy laid-back indie rock track. With Lloyd showing us his warm deep vocals accompanied with soft beats for the verse. With sweet luscious guitar features that add a dreamy utopian vibe. This track comes together perfectly with a romantic hopeful melody teamed with bright polished sounds and smooth creamy vocals, that still manage to hold a rawness and give this song some bite.
We are big fans of Johnny Lloyd and are looking forward to his EP ‘Dreamland’ which will be released on June 10 th via Xtra Mile Recordings.
Stream ‘Pilgrims’ below
Photo Credit : Phoebe Fox
London band Hidden Charms consist of Vincent Davies (singer, guitarist & bassist), Ranald Macdonald (co-singer, keyboardist, guitarist & bassist), Josh Lewis (guitarist & bassist) and Oscar Robertson (drummer). They have revealed their new single ‘Cannonball’ which follows their successful single ‘Love You Cause You’re There’ which was released in 2015 on Deltasonic records (The Coral, The Vryll Society). Hidden Charms had made a name for themselves as a psychedelic rock band but refuse to be tied down to one genre as we see from their new single.’ Cannonball’ which is now available to stream on Spotify and SoundCloud and will be available to purchase on iTunes on 17th June.
‘Cannonball’, produced by Mr Chop (production credits include MF Dooms/Stones Throw Records), is a confidant , funky tune full of swagger. They still however hold onto the psychedelic vibe with the distorted guitar solos but have added a bit more pop into the mix with this track. The funky beat gives a 70s glam rock strut to the track which adds a cool, daring, boldness to the song. This song has an infectious sing along quality to it. With a simple melody and “La La La La La” backing vocals that act as a call and response to the main vocals in the verse that makes this track so easy to love. Full of cool tones conveyed in the vocals and slick seductive guitars that add a provocative teasing effect while the drums give us a strong groovy bounce full of spirited energy. The track ends with the main vocals singing “Na Na Na Na” answered by the ‘La La La La La” backing vocals. This is perfect for engaging with a live crowd as its simple and so catchy.
Hidden Charms have played with Benjamin Booker, Hanni El Khatib, X Ambassadors and YAK over the last 18 months alongside a four-week Club NME Koko residency, so they know how to put on a good show!
We highly recommend seeing these guys live!
You can catch them live at:
19 May – The Great Escape, Brighton
20 May – Republic of Music Courtyard, The Great Escape, Brighton
21 May – Stadtpak, Eupen Music Marathon, Belgium
29 May – Purple Turtle, Reading
04 June – Belgrave Music Hall, Leeds
10 June – Isle Of Wight Festival
18 June – Bushstock Festival, London
02 July – De Beschaving, Utrecht, Netherlands
03 July – Barn On The Farm Festival
09 July – Cornbury Festival
23 July – Smoked and Uncut Festival
24 July – Blackthorn Festival
31 July – Kendal Calling Festival
05 Aug – Euro Ye-Ye, Gijon, Spain
06 Aug – Field View Festival
12 Aug – Boardmasters Festival
14 Aug – Down To The Woods Festival
02 Sept – Lodestar Festival
04 Sept – BML Festival
Stream ‘Cannonball’ below
Lecaudé (pron. ‘Le-co-day’) is the self-titled solo project of London based producer, songwriter and singer Jack Durtnall. Lecaudé has just released his second single of 2016 ‘Powder Blue’ from his Circles EP which is due for release 3rd June 2016 and sees Lecaudé continue to work with long time co-producer and mixer Fred Prest.
‘Powder Blue’ is an infectious synth pop and soul infused track with a cool light bouncy vibe. With its catchy melody and smooth vocals its a silky luxurious track with soft lush backing vocals. The contrast between the female backing vocals and Durtnall’s main vocals adds a refreshing and attractive element to the track. The shimmering synths and playful pop melody give this song a picturesque glow leaving you with a refreshing bright care-free vibe.
‘Powder Blue’ is a infectious track that you cant help but bop along to and is a strong single to follow ‘Circles’ which was released earlier this year. Can’t wait until the release of the EP next month! If ‘Powder Blue’ and ‘Circles’ are anything to go by its going to be an excellent EP for the summer.
Stream ‘Powder Blue’ below
Nashville-based alt/blues rocker, Jack Berry has released his album ‘Mean Machine’ via Consequence of Sound and it is a horde of gritty rock, lustful blues and swagger all mixed together, bubbling and festering creating a beast of a 9 track album.
The album begins with ‘King of Diamonds’ a slick groovy blues track with sizzling guitar riffs and punchy drums. Berry’s gritty vocals brings a bite to the track while the instrumental bridge gives us that groovy dance vibe. ‘Human Woman’ again is a bouncy blues rock track with a great hook and riff. The call and response feature in the bridge between the backing vocals and main vocals is a refreshing break before a final blast on instruments. ‘ Bad Dog’ is a “whisky warming” riff based catchy track. This song is full of swagger and confidence and is insanely infectious. Barry howls over a heavy guitar and drum sound as you feel every drum beat pulse through you and make you move while the guitars demand attention with their enticing luring solos.
‘Other Shoe’ slows things down with an emotion filled vocal full of regret and sorrow. Berry’s vocals become more husky in this track with harmony on backing vocals in parts. This track is full of anguish and pain which is conveyed exceptionally through Berry’s amazing vocals. ‘The Bull’ and ‘Told Me Not To’ follow in a similar blues emotion filled melody with attitude, laying the path for ‘Coal’.
‘Coal’ has a “Black Keys ” feel yet with Berry still maintaining his individuality. With a dirty bass line, slick guitars and a pulse beat that hits you like a hammer in the chest this song packs a punch. ‘Kiss Like’ is a mosh worthy heavy driving track full of energy. This track is full of smouldering emotions with lustful fiery guitars and ravaging drums. ‘Heavy Hopes’ finishes off the album on a high with a “Led Zeppelin” style sultry vocals, kicking beats and of course no song on this album would be complete without the dynamite guitar riffs.
‘Mean Machine’ is a brilliant gritty album from the ever talented Jack Berry
Stream ‘Mean Machine’ below
Founded in 2013, Brooklyn band Of Clocks And Clouds are Joe Salgo ( vocals, guitar, electronics ) and Ross Procaccio (drums, vocals, electronics ). They combine classic and modern rock with a hint of electronic and psychedelic influences. They have released their new single ‘She Had To Go’ from their forthcoming, self-produced album, Better Off, due out July 15th.
‘She Had to Go’ is a heavy brawl like track full of intense festering emotion and dark, driving, electric guitar. The track begins with a strong infectious guitar hook that runs throughout the track. The husky smooth vocals adds a psychedelic trance feel to the song. The addition of a slick seductive guitar lick in parts reinforces a tone of conflicting emotions. The intensity of the song breaks briefly for the bridge into softer strumming on guitar with vocal harmony. This then builds into a massive mosh instrumentally into the verse that follows, which gives you a breather before the final chorus where the vocals intensify for the final chorus.
This is a huge rock track showcasing Of Clocks And Clouds talent for song writing. We are eagerly awaiting the release of their new album this summer.
Stream ‘She Had To Go’ below
Nashville, TN based “Theatrical-Scamp-Rock” band Fable Cry consist of Zach Ferrin ( vocals/guitar), Jo Cleary (violin/ vocals), Scott Fernandez (bass) and Rachel Gerlach (percussion). They draw their inspiration, musically and poetically, from all things imaginative, mythical, and spooky and their new song ‘Dead Or Alive’ is definitely an imaginative narrative of spooky supernatural happenings.
‘Dead Or Alive’ is a wild unique theatrical track that takes you on a journey of eerie entrapment. With its colourful haunting melody and menacing, yet cheery vocals definitely gives you those creepy ominous goosebumps while still maintaining a light hearted fun vibe. It has an elaborate tango style instrumental before the chorus that gives the image of a slick dark deceptive villain that can lure you into a trap. The bouncy percussion and strings add a humour to the story and give this song a dance like quality. The fast passed vocals in the second verse adds to the imagery of this song as it acts like a pulse or heartbeat that has quickened due to fear. The music slows down to a waltz like pace played on strings and then builds again to heighten the dramatic tension before we return to our tango like main melody. This song is definitely a unique experience and it showcases Fable Cry’s ability to not only tell a story through their music but also convey the emotions of the characters and in turn make you feel those emotions as if you are there.
This track is an unusual yet refreshing track and fun to listen to Look forward to hearing more from these guys!
Watch ‘Dead Or Alive’ below
La Bête Blooms are a Post-Punk band from Hull. The band consists of members Daniel Mawer (Vocals/Rhythm Guitar), Jack Gallagher (Bass) , John Copley (Vocals/Lead Guitar), Louisa Robinson (Keyboard) and James Coggin (Drums). Their song ‘SUMMER’ which is released on Adult Teeth Recordings is a track about unrequited love in the summer heat.
‘SUMMER’ bursts into a sunny grunge sound to start which softens to light guitar strums while we focus on the melancholy vocals of the verse that conveys a hopeless atmosphere. The interruption of angry heavy guitar strums and pounding drums displays the singers frustration of his love for someone who doesn’t love him back. The catchy chorus has a gritty sound with bright slick guitars which give us a sunny ” intense heat” vibe while the contrasting, irritated and almost enraged vocals give us that grunge punk feel. This track is full of conflicting emotions and depths which makes this a great diverse track to listen to and shows us another way you can write a summer song without it being all lollipops and rainbows.
Stream ‘SUMMER’ below