Tuesday, 28 May 2019

Brian P Matheny

Album: The Canary and the Cage

Artist: Brian P Matheny


Brian P Matheny's voice holds a gritty 'people's voice' feel that would not be out of place at Speakers Corner in Hyde Park. His vocals remind me of a cross between Bob Dylan and Michael Stipe from REM. So if you love both those artists you are sure to enjoy this album.  There is more than a hint of protest and rebellion in the attitude of 'The Canary and the Cage.' The track 'Seldom I Rest' has great guitar work. There are traces of Folk Country and Indie here in the album's naturalistic and raw approach to direct one-man storytelling.

Brian's own explanation of the album:

'Objectively the title refers to the act of placing something as beautiful as a canary into a cage and then placing the cage into a potentially life-threatening environment. Subjectively the title elucidates the nature of our existence one of both uncertainty and anxiety in a threatening place.'

I would recommend this album to lovers of an acoustic sound. This album is strictly one for the deep thinkers.

Monday, 27 May 2019

Pete R Jones

Artist: Pete R Jones 

Album: Contrivances for the Soul  

Release Date: March 2019


Pete R Jones has the distinguished music pedigree of being an Ex Bass player for Public Image Ltd which is about as far up the music pole as one can climb as far as I am concerned so I was highly intrigued to hear this album. 

'Contrivances for the Soul' isn't quite what I expected. More Synth-Pop than Punk, but some tracks still hold a Punk attitude 'Liar' for example and 'Psyco Drill'

The first track 'Ocean Blue' is a surprisingly soft start which then moves onto the safer punkier ground with the track 'Liar' 

This track seems to hold a more natural position for Pete 'Joyless' Jones who seems more comfortable with angry vocals than any other kind. No surprise for an ex PIL member. The stand out track for me on this album is 'Spanish Snow.' This is a song that maintains just enough attitude and softness combined to give this track a riff with depth. 'The Reason Why' resonates a very eighties feel and is probably the most commercial track on the album with a hint of Gary Numan. 

The title track 'Contrivances for the Soul' is an epic sweeping track over seven minutes long. This album is extraordinary in the fact that Pete R Jones plays all the instruments and vocal on the album apart from a guest guitar slot by Leigh Heggarty from Ruts DC. So it truly is a solo album.

an interesting listen full of experimentation. 

Sunday, 26 May 2019

Wednesday, 22 May 2019

Flesh Tetris

Album: Wrong Kind of Adults

Artist: Flesh Tetris

Label: Cargo Records

Release Date 10th May 2019


Flesh Tetris mission statement is to create Synth-pop music for after the apocalypse with tin foil weirdness.

In this album, they achieve that aim. 'For Fun' is an urban alarmist track complete with sirens. 'Panic Buy' is a pastiche on consumerism a list song that takes its cues from 'Talking Heads' in its attitude and atmosphere.

Flesh Tetris is a quartet comprising of the members Andy Heintz, Eva Menon, Karen Bell, Andy Duke, and Jez Miller.

This whole album is like listening to an art installation. 'Cat Box Journey' reminded me of the eighties in spirit and is a track reminiscent like Alexi Sayles 'Allo John Gotta New Motor'

This is music not recommended for those of a nervous disposition. I would listen to this album while creating wild graffiti art on a subway wall just having raided a nearby chemist.

This album will stretch the outer reaches of your psyche and take you to places you didn't know existed except in a David Lynch film.

The band met at a Russ Meyer film event in London which explains a great deal of their counter-culture style.

The stand out track on this album is 'Glass Bottom Boat' a soothing water lapping track set in Brighton that dissolves into chaos halfway through.

The track 'Rabbits' is a hallucination.

'Rabbits crawling across the ceiling

Rabbits falling from the sky'

If you are looking for something very different you will like this album.

Tuesday, 21 May 2019


Single: Being Boiled

Artist: Klammer

Release Date: 3rd June 2019

Label: Under Dogz Records


Klammer is a Leeds band with a whole lot of attitude and more than a nod to the dark side. 
Their music combines elements of goth rock, punk rock, and darkwave.

Klammer was formed by UK Producer Steve Whitfield (The Cure/The Mission/Jane Weaver) in 2014 and they have already released 3 albums which have gone down a storm with fans. 

Their latest release is a cover of a lesser known track by the Human League called 'Being Boiled' This track opens with a gorgeous sexy riff reminiscent of an early 'Manic Street Preachers' which then gives way to a goth style vocal. This is a band with a deadpan approach. With a polished style and a hint of world-weariness, Klammer claims this track as their own. The darkness of the vocal synchronizes beautifully with the upbeat jangly soundbites on this single. This is the first time I have heard this Human League track so I compared this to the original which has a muddier darker sound. Klammer has updated this track, and while staying true to the original concept of the recording they have also added brighter tones which bring this song bang up to date. 

This is a great single and I look forward to hearing more from Klammer. 

The Seekers Farewell The Golden Jubilee Australian Farewell Tour 2013

Album: The Seekers Farewell 

The Golden Jubilee Australian Farewell Tour 2013

Artist: The Seekers

Label: Decca Records


The Seekers are a very well loved band both in Australia and all over the world. The longevity of their music lies in catchy tunes and boundless optimism. This is music designed to lift your spirits and unashamedly so. No wonder they are still regarded as music royalty and the tributes and praise from stars such as Olivia Newton-John have come flooding in for this album.  At the forefront of the album as always, there is the voice of Judith Durham. This is the voice of a strong woman with a distinctive and pure pitch with its vocal roots in jazz as well as folk. 

The Iconic 60's hit, 'Georgy Girl' effortlessly invokes the spirit of The Sixties and the equally classic 'The Carnival is Over' tugs at a certain nostalgia for a carefree time. Both of these hits were penned by Tom Springfield (Dusty's brother)
The Seekers talent is their ability to take folk music to a whole new level. When you are listening to their hits you are transported back to an era of Flower Power and a happy sixties vibration. Whatever your taste in music you can't help but have a deep respect for The Seekers as they competed for chart hits alongside the Beatles and The Rolling Stones throughout this prolific time in music. 

The stand out track for me on this album is 'I am Australian'

'I came from the dream-time
From the dusty red-soil plains
I am the ancient heart
The keeper of the flame
I stood upon the rocky shores
I watched the tall ships come
For forty thousand years I've been
The first Australian
I came upon the prison ship
Bowed down by iron chains
I bought the land, endured the lash
And waited for the rains
I'm a settler, I'm a farmer's wife
On a dry and barren run
A convict, then a free man
I became Australian
I'm the daughter of a digger
Who sought the mother lode
The girl became a woman 
On the long and dusty road
I'm a child of the Depression
I saw the good times come
I'm a bushie, I'm a battler
I am Australian
We are one, but we are many
And from all the lands on earth, we come
We'll share a dream and sing with one voice
"I am, you are, we are Australian"
This is just an extract of the full lyrics by Songwriters Bruce Woodley and Dobe Newton. The lyrics stirred my senses, I felt proud of Australia and I am not even Australian! 

This particular live album captures the audience love and enthusiasm for the band and creates a beautiful atmosphere. Fans will be delighted by this Golden Jubilee album.

Tuesday, 14 May 2019


Artist: Cellista

Album: Transfigurations

Release Date: May 31st 2019


I like to review independent female artists here on 'Full Blast Music' and in particular when they are as unique as Cellista.

Do you like punk? ballet? classical music? performance art? Hip Hop? performance poetry?

Well the unusual news here is with Cellista you get all of these elements of the performance and at the same time, all those disciplines are wrapped up in a subversive approach to the Cello. 

Classically trained yet open-minded, Cellista strives to include all of the aspects of expression that interest her both musically and artistically which results in the album 'Transfigurations' which is Cellista's perspective of life and art from a very different sort of artist. 

Cellista combines her Californian viewpoint with a surreal twist while not shying away from darker subjects such as war, American politics and the effect of the Californian 'ghost ship' fire on American independent artists.

 'Transfigurations' is also a multi-media release which also includes literature and sound textures. The stand out track on this album is 'Look Homeward Angel' a tune which combines a cello with rap which is a concept I have never heard of before, but it works and it works really well. 

a unique album from a unique artist. 


The Reals

Artist: The Reals

Single: Stop Freaking out

Independent Artist


This London band are so brand new they have practically just been born. I mean they are so fresh that if they were a painting the paint would still be wet. One woman and three men with a counter-culture attitude.

I'm bringing you an exclusive preview of a brand new band. The Reals debut track 'Stop Freaking Out' lampoons the fake reality we believe to be the truth, spoon-fed to us by a mainstream media. The feel of this band is anarchic and political and explores an alternative viewpoint with a left-leaning stance all wrapped up in a punk attitude with a touch of performance art.

If you enjoy your music with a political edge you will love this, and this is a band that has the courage to put their cards on the table and clearly state where they are coming from.

They also have another single and video coming out in July so look out for these newbies.


Friday, 10 May 2019

The Truth

Artist: The Truth 

EP Title: Keep on Keeping on                                

Label: Splangsongs

Release Date: May 23rd, 2019 
The title track 'Keep on Keeping on' is the most commercial sounding track on the EP and is a jangling optimistic tune in the vein of 'The Monkees.' This is unashamedly pop for pop's sake and would smoothly slot into any into a commercial radio station's playlist and easily appeal to a family audience. 

The Truth began life in 1982 when Dennis Greaves and Mick Lister decided to team up to create a mod, soulful alt/pop band. They quickly gained national recognition with their first single 'Confusion Hits Us Every Time' The band split in 1989 but have recently reformed, much to many loyal fan's joy.

For me, the stand out track on this EP is 'Confusion Hits us Every Time' a reprised track of a 1982 hit which has a beautiful catchy summer vibe. I can imagine this track played at a hundred beach parties and festivals up and down the country as this sweet Mod song conjures up shades of 'The Who' and scooters on a Brighton beach front. There are enough catchy hooks and riffs in this song for a sure-fire summer hit. 

'A Step in the Right Direction' would have a direct appeal to fans of Paul Weller, whereas the track 'Life Through a Glass' brings the tempo down to a slower heartbeat and gives more of a 'chill out' vibration. 

'The Truth has a loyal fan following which can only grow in size after the release of 'Keep on Keeping on'


Broken Toys

Single: Broken Toys

Artist: Kilbey & Koch

Release Date: 12th April 2019

Label: The Planet Company


The Australian Duo Kilbey & Koch have created a single that conjures up the wilderness of the Australian outback in a track that haunts the memory. 'Broken Toys' draws its inspiration from lost objects from childhood and long-forgotten days as shown in the lyrics:

Sitting here with the seaweed and a cold beer Nearly at the end of the pier, just here And it appears to manifest as a white day Gone awry, gone astray, ok Broken toys expect delays Someone says our lives' a maze Which time destroys Sunken mornings turn to days Drunk on all the grief and joys Of broken toys Coming home with just a shilling in my pocket Saw the door but there's no way to unlock it I'm gonna hit it Broken toys on crooked shelves Doing badly acted versions of ourselves Spoken words into the void Woke up all the girls and boys With their broken toys Falling snowflake in your hair There with all the grace and poise Of broken toys

Australian Music icon Steve Kilbey & classically trained ARIA Award winner Gareth Koch have collaborated to create a pared-down sound, with a 'bare bones' atmosphere. This song has stripped down acoustics in the most natural sense that leaves you with the taste of salt air in your mouth and a stark wind whipping around your hair.

Steve Kilbey is best known as the frontman of the popular rock 'The Church' and Gareth Koch brings in the classical element to the music hailing from a background of Classical Viennese training.

This is a thoughtful and atmospheric track ideal for long hot summer evenings.


Thursday, 2 May 2019

The Popravinas

The Popravinas 

Album: Willy Nilly

Release date: 2nd July 2019

Label: Zesty Smile Records 


The Popravinas are Eddy Sill of infamous LA band 'The Mutts' charismatic frontman John Adair (who reminds me of comedian Rob Newman) and David Rogers on drums. This is their third album 'Willy Nilly' and it takes you directly into the world of The Popravinas, the whole album is just like having a conversation with them. If Johnny Cash collaborated with 'The Beach Boys' this marriage would give birth to The Popravinas. 'Willy Nilly' is country music but not as you know it and all of the tracks on this album are drenched in Californian sunshine and lazy laid back optimism. This is an album that will help you find that summer feeling even if we have storms in May. The Popravinas don't follow trends or fads, they are always just authentically themselves and their music comes from a very honest place within that space. This is the best way to make music, with an intent to connect yourself directly with the listener. No wonder audiences love them in Alaska as 'The Popravinas' manage to capture a summer vibe that could be interpreted anywhere. 
'Put it all to Bed' is a track that in the nicest way says 'Forget the fight and move on' and the concept of the song really is that simple and direct. 'Did Ya' is almost like a slowed down version of a 'They Might be Giants' track giving of the same kind of intellectual indie vibe. While 'Sofia' is a warm family orientated track about the passing of time and pride in your relationships. 

'Willy Nilly' is sure to put you in a relaxed and sunny mood that will see you through the whole summer. 


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