TheHalves – Are You Happy? – Single Review

TheHalves is a new grunge quartet from the USA.



So new out of the block TheHalves only have one song to share which is less than twenty hours in public domain and no social media page or website to which I can direct you.

Are You Happy? is more of a rhetorical question than one which needs response as the misery of a world of stolen aspiration is reflected in the precisely three minute track as the quartet draw the dirt out of the carpet far more efficiently than a vacuum cleaner is able with the low slung shoulder of music.

Yet, within the morose tones, lies a captivating beauty which holds the listener fascinated and the latter section of the track suddenly ramps up speed and the speakers respond by beating the loose fibres out of anything nearby, leaving the listener to watch the dust particles as they fly around the room.

I get the impression that TheHalves will be a band I will be returning to with some frequency and I wish them every success as they start the tortuous trail that is the music industry.

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The Rashita Joneses – Wide Eyes / Alien Ocean – Single Review

The US garage-rock trio The Rashitata Joneses released the double A side single Wide Eyes / Alien Ocean on the 1st.

The Rashita Joneses

The Rashita Joneses

Before you do anything – turn bass up high – treble to low and volume high, then kick the speakers. There is some pleasure in listening to new music particularly when you find that already by the 3rd of the month already two bands are on the long-list for Editors’ Choice For Band Of The Month.

The Rashita Joneses are able to find sufficient depth in the lo-fi production to deliver an eight minute and twelve second single that you wish lasted even longer. First to the turntable is Wide Eyes – a thunderous diaphony of colliding taughtly strung guitar and folding bass strings with a sprightly drum-kit that is likely to have broken weaker wrists with the force of the rebound whilst the mewling vocal echoes around the room.

The other track is the psychedelic Alien Ocean – my pick of the release which reverses the stringing of instrumentation to allow the guitar to sway around the room like that walk back from the pub after a long day therein whilst the drum skins are audibly collapsing inside the rims with the bass this time holding the perimeters as the vocal once again submerges to a hallucinogenic imagination of itself.

What is there not to enjoy?

Wide Eyes / Alien Ocean is available on bandcamp.

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Tongues of Fire – Sea – Single Review

Tongues of Fire from the USA is a new-wave trio who released their début single Sea on the 24th.

Tongues of Fire

Tongues of Fire

Formed earlier this year – Sea (available on bandcamp) is their first foray into a fully formed release. Though there are snippets of thoughts they have made available for those of us not locally based in North Carolina since January.

Lasting just under three minutes Tongues of Fire spear angularities of lo-fi rim sheering distortion and feedback which coils out of the speakers like a Spitting Cobra espying a Vole running across the scrub and the trio launch the venom across the room in a singular sound which bites into the soul.

I am intrigued to discover more of Lowell Hobbs (Guitar / Vocals), Chandler Bell (Bass / Vocals) and Jakeb Reel (Drums) whilst anticipating they will feature for a while to come.

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Candlebags – ALBERT – Single Review

The Belgian grunge duo Candlebags were introduced earlier in the year.

Candlebags - ALBERT


Their latest single ALBERT, which came out on the 16th is a different side of their sound. The scruffy riffs of guitar are harangued by an omnipresent industrial percussion while the vocal threads from the coil to the ethereal giving the track a sense of the complexities of life and the emotional turmoil of the thoughts delivered within the track.

Candlebags create music which, on the one hand, is a railing against a soul destroying system with its brutal pressurisation whilst, on the other, discovering reasons for personal optimism and finding spaces where to express fragility results, not in harsher punishment rather, in compassion.

Albert – Single – Candlebags is available on iTunes.*

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Destrends – Papa – Single Review

The Australian new-wave trio Destrends release the single Papa on the 15th of July.

Destrends - Photo by Trace Mclean

Destrends – Photo by Trace Mclean

With a more compacted sound than tracks previously featured, in Papa, Destrends are still able to incite the audience join the track in a pogo. The throbbing bass / percussion combinations are split by distorted guitar as the singular vocal splices the ears.

The just under three and three quarter minutes track has the sense of pent-up frustration which is expressed by the dank brooding tempo and stomping feet which pulses through the foundations leaving windows rattling and listener calling for more.

Destrends are a band with much to say and the ability to express it in their audience engaging compositions and I look forward to hearing their next release.

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