Stellarscope – March Of The Lonely – LP review

Sometimes it surprises me how long I have been reviewing bands and it was back in 2010 I first took a look at Stellarscope.

Stellarscope - March of the lonely cover art

Stellarscope – March of the lonely cover art

On the 8th October 2013 they revealed their latest release, the 14 track LP March Of The Lonely. Opening with Stay Away From Me there is a recognizable sound, though perhaps more matured as the instruments blend more subtly in to each other. This is a delightful opener and if nothing followed, worth the price of the LP on its own.

Fashionably Late, Again is another fine delivery which finds the band squeezing in the style that Tom Lugo has a penchant for – Shoegaze.

Damn, I Hope Your Happy and you can probably guess by now why this LP is such a treat for me purely for the song titles. This takes a new tangent of exploration and is somewhat space rock in the ears.

Set The World On Fire brings in connectivity from across the globe as the track swims in incantations of tribal dance.

Breaking the pace we find Never Fit In with a more considered pace and the evocations of Stellascope are given space to fill the room prior to sloping into the ears.

Overblown immediately ups the ante and you can feel yourself in the world of Las Vegas. Though why Overblown and Las Vegas should have hit my head in one sentence I am not absolutely convinced was the intention, but for me the pick of the release for its gemstone spark in my head.

Next up is One Terrible Place – a shimmering glide of vocals and percussion.

Status Quo isn’t a pastiche of the iconic British band, rather an interesting switch of emphasis as delay is sliced on vocal and the guitars are left to reverberate in the background and intriguing track for the contrasts.

Hypervolicity Stars is next. A sound of echos, rising and falling. Stellarscope are utilsing this LP to identify the diversity of sounds and for long time fans it makes perfect sense.


It Is Too Late once again ups the ante with rock melodies subsumed behind the gauze that defines the sound of the band.

At just shy of eight minutes Island Universe gives the listener a retrospective of March Of The Lonely, as pace and texture flow across each other like melting silica.

All For You brings forth distortion with little of the accustomed planing as the trio once again gather the audience by the scruff of the neck like kittens to proffer us new experiences of Stellarscope.

Conversely Up In Smoke lands us in familiar territory though it takes time to reorientate to after the previous tracks.

Concluding with the title track March Of The Lonely, Stellarscope has throughout the LP once again set out their wide ranging stall over about fifteen years of ever exploring and they are now very comfortable in asking the audience to come to them, rather than the other way round.

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An Interview With Adam Elara About The EP Destroy Something Beautiful

I had a chance to catch up with Adam Elara of Southerland Nights once again.

Southerland Nights - artwork for Destroy Something Beautiful

Southerland Nights – artwork for Destroy Something Beautiful

On this occasion we had a conversation about the forthcoming release, set for the 18th – Destroy Something Beautiful.

The collaborative video for Here I Am is here.

Indie Music Tips? The Series.

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The Sea The Sea – Sub Rosa – EP Review

The Sea The Sea who were introduced back in April have just released their new EP the four track Sub Rosa.

The Sea The Sea - Sub Rosa - EP Review

The Sea The Sea – Sub Rosa artwork

Opening with The Shadows and immediately the improvement in quality of the workmanship since the last review is recognizable. There is a shift slightly to more radio friendly sounds, but the essential essence of the band remains intact with their ability to gauze the music within hazes.


System Sleep is a slower and more intense track and a fine demonstration of what The Sea The Sea do best. Layering their music across an extraordinary range of octaves from deeper elements of the bass to a soaring vocal that reaches for the falsetto to deliver a track that is very much the signature sound of the band.

What Came Before has a delightful opening with a rapidity of notes encased in a reflective and an even keeled over-all pace and the contrast of the two gives this track a sense of mischievousness and my pick of the release.

Concluding a well considered EP Sub Rosa finishes with Anemone which slows the pace to a subterranean space of calmness in which The Sea The Sea demonstrate the ability to compose symphonics that gather the listener in an ever more evocative track the longer it lasts.

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Vienna Ditto – Ugly – EP Review

Vienna Ditto have a new EP – Ugly – coming out on CD through Ubiquity Project Records on the 14th October.

Vienna Ditto - Ugly  - EP Review

Vienna Ditto – Ugly – EP artwork

The EP comes in various iterations from a three track to seven on the CD version which has four bonus live recordings. I will concentrate on the three compositions all formats will offer.

With each piece of work running at around the four and a half minute mark, the listener has plenty of time to immerse themselves in the evocative music that is Vienna Ditto. Opening with the title track which has a background sound of a boot being pulled out of warm sticky mud  and this sets up the EP for a slip slide into the deeper recesses of the mind.

By Way Of An Apology is an atmospheric laden piece in which Hatty Taylor seduces the audience with a sultry vocal whilst the instrumentation wraps the ears in a shadowy embrace and the over all effect draws the mind to paint images of dark and fog shrouded gothic buildings. My pick of the release.

Sadly Stop is just that – the end of the standard EP and once again the music is visually stimulating with its circular repetitions. It would be very easy to conceive of any of Ugly appearing on a French Arthouse film. Fortunately they aren’t so the audience is able to find a much easier route to access while they create their own film score in their head.

I look forward to future releases by the duo who make up Vienna Ditto.

Ugly – EP is available on iTunes*

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Vegas With Randolph – Rings Around The Sun – LP Review

Vegas With Randolph have just released their fourteen track LP – Rings Around the Sun.

Vegas With Randolph - LP review - Rings Around The Sun

Vegas With Randolph – cover of Rings Around The Sun

Opening with You Set The World On Fire which at just under four minutes lets the listener settle into Rings Around The Sun with sounds that contain the familiar, yet demonstrates the evolution of the band over the years as the lyrics take us through some of the significant scientific, astrological  and other figures in history.

Salt Water Taffy takes the sounds to a more centrist garage rock tilt with a space-rock undercurrent. I particularly enjoy this track, which was featured just a few days ago.

Cool Things shakes the release in to full flow with a track that picks up the pace with a summery rock feel to it.


Next up is Nikki’s Plan takes the story of life goal and delivers a more thought provoking lyrical concept yet keeps it in tune with the up-beat and effervescent nature of the story so far. It isn’t easy to maintain the journey that is Vegas With Randolph as within four songs we have had four distinctive styles, yet this is the essential core of who they are and why it is always a pleasure to review their material as although they maintain that creative streak and continually wrong-foot the listener, there is at the heart of it the unmistakeable sound of the band that keeps it all coherent.

Almost to prove the point – Broadway – a blues rock number lasts for all of 40 seconds of pithy commentary.

Empathia is classic rock and roll and a fine addition to the release.

Everybody Wants An Atomb Bomb is somewhat jingoistically anthemic and not for me.

Julianne which opens up the second half of Rings Around The Sun more than makes up for it as the melodic guitars sail across the room astride a soul searching vocal.

Snow Day has a delightful almost symphonic introduction before hurtling back to the core sounds of the band.

Late June is my pick of the release as it shows the band in full flow and showcases their talent.

Open Roads is an acoustic led piece and the construction of the song demonstrates Vegas With Randolph have a full handle on making the most out of compositions.

My Lost Colony finds the band once again in a more reflective mood as the deeper notes are given space to set the mood.

The penultimate and title track runs at over five minutes and is the longest piece on the album and the listeners find themselves in another completely different mood setting.

Closing out the LP is Drops of Gold and Vegas With Randolph complete a delightful journey around the Rings Around The Sun with a flourish.

An appropriately named LP given the vast distances musically that the audience is taken, which the band carries off with style.  As with previous releases by the band there are various bonus tracks depending on the format you get hold of the LP so I won’t cover these in the review.

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