If Footmen Tire You - The Bloody Hollies (Alive Naturalsound)

bloodyholliesjpgIf one of those great, booze-soaked rock and roll weekends like Garage Shock or the Las Vegas Shakedown were still a going concern (correct me if I'm wrong and one of them still is ) the Bloody Hollies would have been one of those bands that came in unheralded, blew everyone away and sold a ton at the merch table. And anyone who picked this album up would have been plenty satisfied 'cos it's 30 minutes of fire-breathin' punk fury.

Greetings From Detroit EP - The Rockets (self released)

greetings-from-detroitPssst…Like Rock? I think got something for ya. Like a disappeared postcard that got mailed 35 years ago, this showed up on my porch and promptly blew the doors off. It’s the first Rockets recording since they disbanded in the early ‘80’s.

Monster drummer and songwriter Johnny Bee Badanjek (think Detroit Wheels, Free Ride, Welcome To My Nightmare) has relaunched The Rockets with Jim Edwards - a fantastic singer, and a badass group of Detroit musicians.

BRUCE! The EP - BRUCE (self released)

bruce-epRising from the ashes of trio Hy-Test, BRUCE! (capital letters compulsory) is a band from the once-industrial musical nursery of Wollongong, south of Sydney, that plays skull-crushing guitar rock with occasionally complex arrangements. This EP showcases four of their simpler tunes delivered to mostly damaging effect.

My Name is Charles 'Chicken' Diamond - Chicken Diamond (Beast Records)


my-name-isIt’s the third album for one-man bent bluesman Chicken Diamond and it marks another point on his descent into sonic hell. Ten songs of dirt-flecked distortion with a rusty sawtooth edge.

The Chicken’s coop is France where anything that has the odour of being musically underground is driven so far below the surface you’d need a miner’s helmet and a canary in a cage to find it. Thankfully, brave labels like Beast are around to facilitate tours of the aural subterranean catacombs and cast some light.

Yummy! - Hard-Ons (Citadel Records)


yummy-reish“Yummy!” marked the Hard-Ons’ arrival on a major label's promotional roster and you had to be mad, deaf, both or no longer breathing not to hear the greatness in the songs. A decade-and-a-half later with a re-mastering job in place, it sounds even better.

Pagan Day - PYPY (Slovenly/Black Gladiator)

pagan-dayIf Thee Oh Sees are a version of The Replacements for the Two-Thousand-And-Teens - as in critical darlings overlooked by the mainstream, including me in both instances - where does that leave Montreal’s PYPY? Playing this sort of fucked-up mix of psych, electronica and punk is not going you pigeonholed anywhere fast.

Axels and Sockets: The Jeffrey Lee Pierce Sessions Project (Volume III) - Various Artists (Glitterhouse Records)

axels-socketsCypress Grove, one-time collaborator with Jeffrey Lee Pierce (check out their Rambling Jeffrey Lee LP - "Real Steel Blues") is unwilling to let the magic die. He feels Jeffrey’s echoes all around him.

So do his friends and admirers. One can’t help wondering whether, if Debbie Harry had predeceased him, Jeffrey might have been tempted to do a similar project for Her.

The Man Is Back: A Tribute To Johnny Cash - Various Artists (Beast Records)

the-man-is-backThere’s a news story that’s been doing the rounds of mainstream media about a man with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder who was given a brain implant that turned him into a Johnny Cash fan.

If you want to delve further, the journal “Frontiers in Behavioural Neuroscience” (yeah, I read every issue) describes the case of “Mr B”, a 58-year-old Dutch man who had suffered severe OCD from the age of 13. The insertion of a brain pacemaker apparently turned him into a follower of The Man In Black.

Give It Time - The Revellions (Dirty Water Records)

give-it-timeHere’s an album that starts relatively sedately, grows a brass section and descends into off-kilter garage rock hell. If that sounds like a dissing, think again.

The Revellions are from Dublin in Ireland and have made a nine-song album of two distinct halves. The first recalls, at times, Boston institution The Lyres with its strong reliance on surging organ and wailing vocals, while the second goes to that noisy and mind-altered place where the Black Lips and The Oh-Sees reside. Soulful versus Trippy. Both bases covered. 

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