Eric, Matthew, Adam, Pat and Kurt – split between Philadelphia and New York in the USA – form the cinematic-rock band PALMAS.

PALMAS - cinematic-rock from the USA


Atmospheric textures ooze out of the speakers (unlike the shouty capitalisation of the band name) filling the room with puffy down-filled pillows of luxury. Harking of ’60s Merseybeat the quintet have added surfy froth, to festoon the listener, in luscious compositions in which to recline. It is easy to imagine the soundtrack to any brightly light Lynch film with PALMAS adding the finishing touches of context to the scenes. Far more than this, the creations are not merely backing music but stand on their own legs with considerable poise.

Easily spaced reverbed and delayed guitar is interwoven with blurred percussion giving the out-put its other-worldly qualities as the vocal peeks its head above the mix without ever aiming to become an over-riding element of the creations.

PALMAS are, unsurprisingly, gaining significant traction in live performance and the release of To The Valley yesterday will, if justice be served, break to a global audience a quintet who should be far better known.

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To the Valley – EP – Palmas is available on iTunes.*

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The Jones Rival

The Jones Rival from Sydney in Australia is the garage rock line-up of Adam (Vocals / Guitar), Evan (Guitar), Shaun (Drums) and Lanky (Bass / Vocals).

The Jones Rival - Garage Rock from Australia

The Jones Rival

After a brief introduction via a video in October it is about time I got round to a full review of The Jones Rival.

My advice, turn up the volume as this is music which is best digested loudly. Whilst loosely garage rock, the band play with shoegaze influences, to provide tracks which reverberate around the room, bouncing from wall to wall before coalescing centre stage in a continuum of sounds.

Considered phrases thread their way round the room, filling the audience with music arriving from all directions, yet inside the brain it settles to a mesmeric focus. The shimmering sounds develop intensity whilst another refrain emerges from the speakers, but simultaneously the sounds are absorbed by the ears as-though being applied by a soft sponge, resulting in a slightly psychedelic feel.

There is little for the listener to do, other than open the ears and wallow in the compositions that The Jones Rival extend.

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Straight Arrows

Straight Arrows a garage rock band from Sydney, Australia is Adam, Owen, Alex and Angie.

Straight Arrows - Garage Rock from Australia

Straight Arrows

The lo-fi reproductions and enough reverb to confuse an echo are based on classic rock ‘n’ roll, delivered typically within less than two and a half minutes enrapture the listener. Living up to their name Straight Arrows deliver a sound that isn’t complex, though it is a band immediately heading on to my ‘play this now’ playlist.

Coming up to three years since their debut LP, Straight Arrows have the freshness of a band just starting out as they maintain a high voltage enthusiasm for producing music to sing-along to, even though the lyrics are distorted into the almost undecipherable, but it doesn’t matter that the audience is singing completely the wrong words. This is a band who want their listeners to have a good time and the band delivers that every-time they perform or release material.

The fact that it is pouring with rain, cold and dark outside as I write doesn’t matter at all, this is like a carefree night out mid-summer. Thanks for making it a better day Straight Arrows.


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Scenic from Perth in Australia is the ambient electronic quartet of Adam, Eric, Doug and Nicholas.

Scenic - ambient electronic from Australia


Scenic produce a sound which would make you think they sit squarely in the South West Coast America scene as the washes of watercolour sounds flow across the room. Generous loops of electronica are given room to explore the spaces whilst percussion and guitar define the shapes and hazed vocals blur the edges leaving the listener feeling as though they are in an immersion tank.

I really should have set this for publication on Saturday after a great Friday night out, but having spent some time having a listening to the unhurried and relaxed sounds I thought the weekend needed extending back to Thursday.

This is music which fits across much of the globe, to such an extent it was a French label – Tigersushi who gave them their first recording breaks. Now signed with the Australian label Future Classic they have recently released a five track EP – Shockwaves. Their music is gaining far broader recognition and with the Australian summer festival season just beginning to set up schedules and get into flow, I would expect to hear far more of Scenic over the coming year.


Shockwaves – EP – Scenic is available on iTunes.*

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