Yes – already we are at the end of the first twelfth of the year and time for the Editors’ choice for band of the month.
A month in which thirty nine bands were on the long-list such has been the joy of material and I thank every musician who puts thought to composition, whether featured or not, you make the world a brighter place.
The Australian prog-rock band Voyager are on the verge of releasing the single Misery Is Only Company.
With a return to the punchier sounds of their earlier material Misery Is Only Company equally retains the melodic elements that distinguish the territory of Voyager.
The track spreads its wings calmly around the room before suddenly steeply diving, like a bird of prey hunting, into a foot on the throttle rock track in which the keys are the fulcrum as they slide in and out of focus, whilst setting both rhythm and temper. The drum-kit is given room to explore adding some delightfully crisp power dives. The guitars stretch from supporting act to full-frontal assault whilst vocal drives from headlong battle lines to balladeer.
The bass, as you will know, tends to be my obsession and I haven’t yet mentioned it – which isn’t due to its irrelevance, rather its importance. Whilst Misery Is Only Company allows the remainder of the band to showcase themselves the instrument is the ever present handler ensuring none of the parts forget who is holding the leash, pulling sharp tugs to hold back any wayward ideas that may have been lurking in the minds of those in the spotlight.
It is always a delight to come back to the English avant-garde-rock band Blonde Bunny.
I never know quite what to expect playing a Blonde Bunny track and it is like tearing the wrapping of a shiny birthday-present – Loreta doesn’t disappoint.
Pulsing percussion and bass thread their way whilst the iconoclastic vocal spirals like a spectral presence and electronics flow in and out of range. Blonde Bunny have the ability to take an idea, throw it up in the air and gather up the pieces, delivering material which is simultaneously challenging of preconception, whilst being accessible to the ears.
As always, like a spoilt child, I am already eagerly awaiting the next Blonde Bunny track to surface.
The Welsh dark-rock quintet Beach Fatigue are due to release their Eponymous LP on the 4th of March.
Beach Fatigue – To Die For
The track – To Die For, which is the third of the dozen on the just under forty minute LP that I have had the pleasure of listening to in full and will provide a full track by track review when I am able to share my picks of the pieces of music, was made available a few hours ago.
To Die For rattles the foundations and will have you checking there isn’t a herd of elephants in the cellar as a luscious bass and bass-drum battle as to who can gain greater attention, whilst the shoegazy guitars sound as they should be featuring on a Moriconne soundtrack from which the signature vocal splits the eardrums.
The absolute joy of Beach Fatigue is their ability to coalesce all these disparate ideas into a just under four minute track of coherence that just needs to be heard again immediately.
It was back in 2014 that the English alt-rock duo Brockley Forest last featured.
Brockley Forest – The Die Has Been Cast – artwork
From the five track EP The Die Is Cast, the opener – Rubicon fires its way into the room in a blister of shorn guitar to be joined by scrummaging percussion and pugnacious vocal as Brockley Forest remind me of all the reasons I enjoy their blend of rock with its punchy energetic no-nonsense power-base.
I will try and avoid another eighteen month gap before coming back to the duo.