Those familiar with Down I Go, will know that a Kickstarter campaign was put together by fellow/rival super-fan, Halldór Heiðar Bjarnason, who invited them out to his Icelandic fljótstunga travel farm to record a new album. You’re Lucky God, That I Cannot Reach You is the warped fruit of their labours and takes the weird metal-hardcore-jazz-harmony-happy-screaming mutation of Down I Go’s sound and amplifies it to the heavens…
Opening with the hammering feedback debauchery of Um Bongo, (the first track from Holding Hands With Jamie) Girl Band launch head first into this 13-song packed set with urgency and unhinged lunacy. Despite vocalist Dara Kiely still suffering from a bad leg, he manages to writhe and hobble around the stage, progressively descending into a sweaty, dishevelled mess of a man, but still utterly captivating.
If you’ve been familiar with Girl Band’s work – any similarities to their France 98 EP of 2013 have been taken outside and fed through a wood chipper. Holding Hands With Jamie takes things a step too far and keeps going, laughing maniacally, trailing a huge splatter of gasoline behind it, whilst repeatedly trying to get a spark from a lighter.
This is a very dark path indeed. I suppose that the week of summer we had back in July is all we’re going to get as we descend into the realms of autumn. What better way then to soundtrack that by listening to something that will not only make you constantly look over your shoulder in fear and head-bang like a bastard. UpCDownC are that band.
Popular Irish beat combo* Girl Band have been busy it seems. You know the life of a band, bit of touring, bit of album recording, holding a giant Shania Twain poster – the usual. They’ve also made another video (directed and produced by Bob Gallagher, who made the video for their Blawan cover, check it out) and it’s super weird.
Two years ago, Honningbarna released the album Verden Er Enkel, an album I frankly, couldn’t get enough of. It was everything that modern punk rock should be, sung in a Scandinavian tongue; and while I couldn’t make out anything cello-totting vocalist Edvard Valberg was saying, it really didn’t matter because the music was so breathlessly brilliant.
There are sudden pattern shifts, time changes and deviations from the norm that make Contact Fix by Derby’s Alright The Captain an exciting and fascinating listening experience. Opening track, Toaster Mouse, is built around a steady, squelching synth-bass line that rises and falls with giddy abandon, whilst the tappy-math rock guitar weaves trickery and pitch-shifting bite throughout..
Braving the Arctic conditions, I thought it would be a good idea to remove myself from the comfort and warmth of my abode and venture to Hitchin to see some rock action happen. Arriving late I miss nearly all of The Grass Is Hairy’s set (sorry lads) – by accident. I do catch the last 10 seconds of their gruff, obstinate punk-core shouting as I make my way to the bar.