One, Two, Three, Four…Sound Check Please!

Yeah, I'd be this depressed if I was in Staind as well.In the words of Staind, it’s been a while since I’ve done one of these, mostly because a) I haven’t bought Rock Sound for a few months and b) I’ve devoted my allotted magazine reading time to Xbox 360 Gamer and Razzle.

The Ghost of A Thousand – Running On Empty

This sounds a bit like The Bronx, instantly awarding The Ghost Of A Thousand two very enthusiastic thumbs up. You could be forgiven for thinking the scratchy vocals are that of Matt Caughthran, such is their raw hoarseness. The music itself is a persistent car-pile-up of punk rock and really it’s quite excellent and a decent start. It also begs the question why I haven’t listened to this band before. Needs more backing vocals as well.

Anti-Flag – Bring Down Their Wall Again

I see Anti-Flag haven’t changed much since I last heard them. I still stand by the fact that they will never top ‘911 for Peace’ which is pretty much perfect, but this is by the numbers, fist in the air, shout-along, rabble-rousing punk, which is decent by their standards, but feels like something they recorded about 7 years ago. “It’s time to chose what side you’re on, the side of the people or the side of the gun!” ”“ actually I can see this being a popular live track, so disregard any of the negative points above.

The Blackout – ShutTheFuckUppercut

Hahahaha, I approve of the song title (which sounds like a phrase Steven Seagal would utter before he introduces you to Mr. Fist) and of The Blackout’s dual-vocal, hardcore onslaught. Splitting both melodic and harsh screaming between the two singers is nothing inherently new, but it’s a technique that works, especially on a track so full of body and pumped up energy as this one ”“ a winner in my book.

Placebo – Battle For The Sun

Dear Mr Moloko, whilst listening to ‘Battle For The Sun’ I couldn’t help but notice how annoying you sound repeating the last word of each sentence over and over. This is also the first time I’ve listened to Placebo in ages and ‘Nancy Boy’ was really good. This” isn’t bad and the chorus sounds decent, what with the slight string parts I can just about hear, and the “dream brother”¦my killer” my lover” bit. Anyway, lose the crappy repeated bit at the beginning and it could be great. Warmest wishes, Ross.

CKY – Hellions On Parade

CKY are still together? Blimey. Thoughts on this: ehhhhh”..well, it would work about 8 years ago. I see they’ve opted for some big plodding riffs and the howling vocals, and if you were drunk then I’d probably sing-a-long to this. It is however, the kind of thing that would fit on Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 27, which is by no means a bad thing.

Sucioperro – Are You Convinced?

Really, really boring until the last 25 seconds when they all started screaming “do you think it fucking matters who we say we are, who we think we are and who we try to be.”

Cursive – From The Hips

This is really quite stunning. There’s kind of a Hold Steady, ramshackle-pace, accompanied by some noisy, clattering punk, leaving quite a change of tune between the tracks sombre, jazz-band-on-the-slow opening. (Yeah this makes no sense, but I know what I mean.)

Moving Mountains – Lights and Shapes

Twisting down the melodic hardcore path, backed by a heavy wash of reverberation, muted strings and smatterings of electronics, Moving Mountains create a solid wall of sound and the instrumental breakdown has a certain stirring complexity about it.

Codes In The Clouds – Don’t Go Awash In This Digital Landscape

Needs to be louder, so, so much louder. Or perhaps heavier? Anyway, this isn’t challenging enough ”“ it’s too standard – it’s like they’ve followed some post-rock for dummies yellow book; needs rawer, gutsier riffs and the drummer needs to beat those skins until he busts straight through and his left smashing the sides to pieces with his blood-smeared hands.

Coalesce – The Plot Against My Love

Sorry Coalesce fans, but this sounds well nu-metal. The stupid distorted rapping for one thing does this no favours, but at the least the guitarist has the decency to bend his sound so it see-saws between the standard knucklehead plod, to an almost “my time signatures have gone to shit” flourish.

Youves – Fully Erect, Serve and Protect

I’m sorry, but Youves really do sound like Liars, circa ‘They Threw Us”.’ But then they also sound like a pack of dogs  jumping up and down on some instruments. Whatever the case, this is some fantastic dance-punk that makes my body twitch like Michael J. Fox.

Telepgraphs – Your First Love Is Dead

One particular riff in this track is bugging me, because I’ve heard it somewhere before and I can’t think where. Whatever the case, I bloody love this. It has the same giant crushing choruses of Renee Heartfelt’s emo-channelling hard rock, along with some suitably tormented, yet passionate and irate cries from vocalist Darcy. Would definitely listen to more Telegraphs given the chance.

White Light Parade – Burn It Down

“She hates this town”she’s burning it down tonight” so you date an arsonist do you? Wowzers. I don’t have any real opinion on this, just I’m glad it was over really. Not offensive, just not really anything there to ‘wow’ me.

My Passion – Crazy & Me

I really can’t put into words how bad this is. Even if Hitler, Harold Shipman and Fred West formed a band, they’d still be better than My Passion.

Serpico – Godforsaken

Ah, the band name reminds me of this classic scene from Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back:

Jay: “Whoa! What the bleep, Serpico? What’d we do?”
Cop: “We got a report of two guys hanging around outside a store selling pot.”
Jay: “We don’t smoke pot, yo.”

Etc.

Brilliant. Oh yeah, I don’t like this, mainly because of the rather lacklustre vocals, but it’s still streets ahead of My Passion.

Lizard Hips

Lizard Hips

Junior Vice President of Keep It Fast. In other news: I work in social media, talk about dinosaurs, run a book club and have amazing facial hair. I am also a male man who is still not dead.

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