Photos : Ollie Bentley
Photos : Ollie Bentley
What better way is there to spend a Friday night than at a gig? Well here I am once again at The Black Heart. It’s kinda became one if my favourite places for gigs! I make my way in and after a little bit the singer from “Eliphant” comes to introduce himself and we have a little chat.
The clock is ticking; it’s now time for the show to begin. As mentioned the first band is “Eliphant” a Punkadelic Rock band from London. The band was born in North London this spring but this trio are already very close and work together perfectly. They manage to combine psychedelic garage tones and punk urgency with a modern twist. All their songs are inspired by the city life, from night illusions to blunt realities. The love for what they do and their complicity it’s very visible on stage. The room starts to get fill of people that are calmly enjoying the good music.
The next up is “Mongrel Dogs”, a Rock and Roll band from London. Their music has influences spanning several decades and nationalities, touching three continents – to create an infectious, hi-energy experience. These guys gravited to London to pursue their careers in music and the power of internet put them together. The one thing I can say about these guys is that they are pure energy and bloody good Rock and Roll. The crowd is literally going mental and enjoying every single moment of their performance. It is unbelievable how they own the stage and make everyone feel at home. To give a twist at the night, at one point they decide to all go shirtless as the old Rock and Roll legends used to do. At the end of their set the crowd wants more and, at the screaming “one more song”, they come back on stage.
The night goes smoothly and we are now waiting for “Daxx & Roxane” – a Hard Rock and Roll band from Montreux, Suisse. They are a ticking time bomb of raw Rock n’ Roll power and crushing heavy riffs. These guys own such a big strength that resides in the passion and energy that they manage to deliver on stage and the power of their sound that mix the Hard Rock attitude to the savageness of Heavy Metal. I can see that some people in the audience start head banging, others starts jumping around and singing along with them. To spice things up, one of them takes out a bottle of Jack Daniels and starts to pour it down to the mouths of the people in the crowd. As happened for the previous band, at the end of their set the crowd screams once again “one more song” and they run back on stage for an epic last song.
Each band played a quite long 45 minutes set and managed to involve the audience very much, like it should always be.
Photo : Femuline by Ben Breading
Debut track ‘Londons Children’, from the (you guessed it) London based Femuline, surfaced online earlier this month and dropped into the Spilt Milk inbox for review. I’m not going to lie – this track and this band fill me this intrigue. What draws me into ‘Londons Children’ comes in two forms; firstly the track itself, but secondly these guys as artists.
‘Londons Children’ clearly draws influence from darker, synth-saturated 80’s romance, yet Femuline have given it a contemporary spin to create a track that is pretty unique. Musically it isn’t complicated or flamboyant, remaining sweet with a gentle pulse that keeps it chilled yet consistent. The vocals come with a rasp of effortlessness that, again, leans on the 80’s for inspiration – I can’t help but hear hints of Robert Smith in the bite around some of these lyrics. This track is definitely atmospheric and I can imagine that live it would come across rather powerful. Lyrically however, I feel it’s too simple – though the minimalism of it does express what these guys, as artists, want to convey. This does allow the meaning and passion behind this track to take the leading role. It’s fair to say that I am getting more and more addicted to this track with each listen.
Femuline emerged online recently, initially appearing a little mysterious, yet they had their image and ethos nailed from the off – which has given them a platform for their music to flourish – all we need now is more.
As a whole they stand for self-expression, with a handwritten statement on twitter embodying what they are, and standing as a fantastic introduction to what they are about. ‘An individual who obtains both feminine and masculine qualities + doesn’t associate specifically with either one.’ You can tell through the way that Femuline is presented that it’s not just about the music, and they are hear to act as a voice for anyone that relates to what their tracks say and mean.
Their sound is unique and what they are about is very current and relevant, it’s refreshing to hear self-reflection come through in a track like this. I’m looking forward to hearing more from these guys and seeing what journey their venture will take them on.
Check out Femuline online and listen to ‘London’s Children’ here;
‘Don’t’ – A brand new track from alt-indie rock four-piece Eyes To The Skies dropped this week, on the 18th of August to be exact, and it also dropped into the Spilt Milk inbox for review too!
‘Don’t’ is your 2017 quintessential indie rock track, delivering everything that you would want and expect from a gritty yet bouncy artist like this. It’s pretty upbeat and fast paced from the go, with a contented guitar riff that hums throughout. It suggests the guitar work leans on influence from some early Green Day and rock artists that follow suit, which gives this track a more punk-y bite. This is reflected in all aspects of the track, with the boyish vocals pulling it into a more indie realm. The pace keeps up through the track and it will probably shine live, as it has the energy and kick to encourage a crowd to up the rowdiness.
These boys have just landed a support slot on The Sherlocks upcoming tour for the Southampton date! The Sherlocks are rising stars of the genre at the moment, giving supports like Eyes To The Skies a fantastic platform! We will definitely be keeping an ear to the ground for these guys over the next few months!
Catch them with The Sherlocks on the 21st of September (Southampton 1865) and check out ‘Don’t’ now!
If we’re being honest, a Monday evening probably isn’t the most optimal night to play in an industrial town with no formal student scene. That said, shows put on by promoter ‘Sheer Music’ are always worth attending: in recent times he’s put on Gnarwolves, Boston Manor and WSTR – an ace set of bands for a town that often feels neglect, due to the more prominent scenes in Bristol and Oxford.
The opening band, the deadnotes, came as a late addition after their initial gig plans fell through. The German 3 piece proved a great addition, keeping with the pop-punk theme, with raspy vocals and the traditional power chord laden songs. Faint hints of math-rock inspired guitar licks appeared once in awhile, such as in song ‘Beautiful Minds’, helping the band to bring a trademark to their sound.
Next on the bill was Swindon band Over to You. Regularly featuring on bills of local pop-punk shows, Over to You bring a heavier sound very much in line with traditional Lower Than Atlantis. Frontman and guitarist Jimmy never fails to bring plenty of energy into live performances, so God only knows why he decided to wear a long sleeve jumper, maybe a slight oversight?! The 30-minute set saw Over to You showcasing said energy, breathing further life into already energetic set of songs.
The first of the 2 out of town bands was Weatherstate. The Bristol boys launched into a set full of quick progressions with an upbeat bounce to them – it’s like blending Four Year Strong with Gnarwolves and then topping it off with a UK Pop-Punk seasoning. It wasn’t hard to get drawn into Weatherstate who put on a great set; hopefully the boys from down the road will be back to Swindon again in the near future. ‘Sympathy’ was a highlight from their set, if it’s a taste of what’s to come then they could very well make a big impact within the UK scene.
The night’s headline performance came from Brighton based Muskets. The songs at times feel like they could fall straight into punk, while at other times (most notably the newer songs from their catalogue) feature fantastic vocal melodies, backing and lead guitar lines, ‘17 Years’ being an example of such. A high-energy performance from start to finish saw Muskets show why label ‘No Sleep’ has confidence in them; if the new songs are anything to go by, Muskets are going to be winning over a lot of new fans in a short amount of time.
Firstly, how could we resist writing about a band that have such a great name.. (we may be biased)
And secondly…how great is it that this 5-piece hailing from Birmingham are also incredibly talented and geared up with a summery track that is the perfect addition to our playlist!
Now I know, the weather doesn’t always play fair, but it IS summer right? And we all know that Summer requires feel good tracks that you wanna relax in the garden too whilst also jump around too? …Well if you don’t know what I mean then let me present you with a song that will make you understand!
Spilt Milk Society’s new single ‘She Tastes Like Summer’ is “the ice in my lemonade” and the perfect dose of indie-pop that we need.
Intimate raw vocals that contrast a hazy guitar-line open the track, building you with a state of relaxation before the drum kicks in and lifts the track to that classic upbeat, but still as delicate, indie rock sound. A cocktail of inescapable vocals mixed with an almost MGMT arrangement and Swim Deep energy make this to be a cool distinctive sound.
Such a strong and perfectly designed track from the Spilt Milk Society, that captures their sound and balances it with that indie direction, fans wont be able to get enough of this refreshing sound- so let’s hope these guys keep up the good work!!
Check out their new single here: soundcloud/SpiltMilkSociety
After a few days break, I’m ready to get back in action. For a good start of the week, I head down to the usual “The Black Heart” in Camden.
I have a quite early start to the evening and the room is already packed! The first artist to jump on stage is “Luke Rainsford” – a young man from Wolverhampton that plays Acoustic Emo/Punk music. This guy is truly amazing; he has so much energy and every song that he sings come straight from his guts and his heart. You can feel his passion in the air. The crowd know him very well and it is so nice to see everyone singing along with him.
Second act of the evening is “ICYMI” an Alternative Pop/Punk band from Gloucestershire. Their performance is explosive, infectious and energetic and lead singer Elin Allan surely knows how to own the stage. Her voice it’s great and reminds me of Hayley Williams from “Paramore”. To spice up the show they decide to play a cover of “Bye Bye Bye” of NSYNC, where the audience starts to dance with them.
Time for a little break and we move on with the show. It is now the turn of “All These Years” a Pop/Punk band from Hertfordshire. Their sound is upbeat, sun-soaked and aggressive all thanks to their music influences such as “A Day To Remember” to name one of them. As they just released their second EP “Pull it, Tug it, Love it!”, they are already working on the new one touring the UK in the meantime. Their set is unbelievably great and funny and everyone in the room really enjoyed it.
So far so good – time now for “Maypine” a Pop-Punk/Alt-Rock band from Brighton. Formed in mid-2016 they have rapidly progressed through the Brighton scene, established themselves as one of the most exciting new Pop/Punk bands in the UK. They have a fresh sound with upbeat and catchy melodies. The crowd is already warm up, but with them people start to head bang and open up to a big mosh pit. These guys have the talent and the energy to go even further in their career.
It’s hot and everyone it’s sweaty but ready for the main act, “Better Than Never” a Pop/Punk band from Oxford. The duelling vocalists and the guitarists make a huge impact on the killer sounds of this band. The audience is on fire and I can spot some of the other artists in the front row, having the time of their lives singing along with them. They are superb and by the intensity of their performance, it’s very difficult not to dance.
It is a good way to end a kick ass gig!