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Monthly Archives: August 2012

An Arizona five-piece have recently become new Twitter followers of
mine and their happy, energetic pop-punk sound meant that I simply had to shout about them on here. They’ve just released the full length album On Your Way, which is available on iTunes and if you’re into a slightly indie version of All Time Low, RadioDriveBy are going to be your new musical crush.

Born in autumn 2009, RadioDriveBy have played shows with Forever The Sickest Kids and Family Force 5 and are rapidly climbing to the top of the Arizona music scene. Their debut EP Nothin’ But Better was released in June last year followed by the single Hope You Know in October. The new four-track EP was unleashed in March and it could well be the band’s breakthrough record with plenty of catchy choruses and ear-friendly riffs.

A classic American punk tone backed up with slamming drums and melodic guitars mean that RadioDriveBy have a sound that is probably one of the most marketable in the music industry. They could well be the next pop-rock sensation to emerge from across the pond but even better, they’re not a straightforward teeny-rocker type band. Dark, metallic smatterings on tracks such as What You Need put them into a whole different genre. Here they begin to incorporate elements of alternative rockers such as Escape The Fate, transforming their initial innocence into something a little more edgy.

They are indeed a band for those who love the punk vocals with darker undertones and a little bit of drama on top. Sound like your sort of thing?  Visit http://radiodriveby.net/ for all the official news as well as streaming of their tracks. Keep up with them at https://www.facebook.com/radiodriveby and https://twitter.com/RadioDriveBy.

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TITLE: Between The Sea And The Sky
BAND: Some Were Satellites
LABEL: Unsigned
RELEASED: July 14th 2012

If you loved All At Sea, who I introduced last week, chances are that you’ll also fall head over heels for their friends Some Were Satellites. This alternative outfit are five more Essex lads with another sack full of passion and emotion. Featured on BBC Essex Introducing and playing at a host of local events and London venues, Some Were Satellites’ new EP comes from a band who have grown since the recording of earlier material, which can be heard on iTunes or at http://www.youtube.com/someweresatellites where you can also follow their studio escapades.

Between The Sea And The Sky begins with a classical intro which ends with a frenzy of guitar. Violins and a bass drum are eventually drowned out as the intro expertly melts into Without Intent, an alternative ballad with plenty of punch and the heart-rending quality to the vocals that the best pop-punk bands possess. This is a band who write songs with depth and capture an audience with a sound that has been done plenty of times before but you can’t escape the fact that these guys are doing it right. Without Intent is a track that you know would make an amazing show without even having to see it played live. The singing guitars and crashing drums create the atmosphere while the backing vocals towards the end of the song give it an air of mystery, which makes it an intriguing and enjoyable track.

Who’s Comin’ With Me? is a step towards pop-punk but with a Bullet For My Valentine style guitar playing accompaniment. Singer Mark Spiers’ voice is shown off to perfection and just like their friends in All At Sea, the Funeral For A Friend comparison is undeniable. Rocking love songs seem to be Some Were Satellites’ specialty but Who’s Comin’ With Me? seems to be about more than just love. It’s about carrying a burden and becoming close to breaking point -“With the weight of the world on my shoulders, there’s only so much I can take” while being desperate to keep hold of love. It’s almost like he’s pleading with love to stick with him because he needs the support, which is something that we can all relate to.

It drifts into the closing chill-out track I Can Walk Faster Than I Can Run, which features a dangerous woman who he simply can’t resist. Again, a pop-punk thread runs through it but it’s vamped up by the fast metallic riffs and racing drum heartbeat. With a touch of Mayday Parade meets All Time Low about it, this is Some Were Satellites mixing the alternative sound they’ve honed with the natural pop quality in Mark’s voice. It’s another track that you know would send a crowd of fans into moshpit heaven and it really leaves a positive last impression of the band. Expert licks and plenty of energy make it a rock classic.

Some Were Satellites are a band with a lot to offer a wide audience. Fans of both British alternative groups and American pop-punks will love this EP and that accessibility is a pretty essential ingredient for success. Follow them at https://twitter.com/swsatellites and https://www.facebook.com/someweresatellites

TITLE: Naked
BAND: Hero Jr
LABEL: Desa Records
RELEASED: August 17th 2012

Can’t get enough of your American rockers at the moment? Here is a new one for you. Hero Jr are four Indiana guys with a lot of heartfelt raw emotion and a serious passion for rocking big venues. Having released their self-titled debut album two years ago, they are about to release the follow up Back-Up Plan on October 23rd.

Hero Jr are bringing a little bit of American fire across the pond and Naked dropped just a couple of weeks ago. To say that it’s three minutes of guitar heaven is a bit of an understatement, as the riffs really carry the track. Backed up by a constant heartbeat courtesy of drummer Matthew Haughey behind Evan Haughey’s Caleb Followill-esque vocals, it’s an incredibly addictive song.

Catchy choruses are normally what makes a song successful and Naked certainly has that. In fact, the melody of the verses is equally as catchy, making it a track that will be forever doing loops in your head. With its sing-song rhythm and resonating guitars, it’s also a great live anthem, which will no doubt get everyone jumping in the moshpit.

Feeling vulnerable and/or exposed in a relationship where you’re head over heels in love is something that we’ve all felt and Naked’s subtext seems to allude to this situation. Putting all your energy into someone and giving them complete control of your feelings is scary but Naked describes it perfectly. It’s a great song to turn to when you feel like you’re giving too much to your lover.

Hero Jr are experienced rockers with a lot of grit and talent to boot. Keep up with them at http://www.herojr.net/ and https://www.facebook.com/herojrmusic

TITLE: Summertime In The City
BAND: Scouting For Girls
LABEL: Epic Records
RELEASED: August 27th 2012

The popsters who brought us She’s So Lovely and This Ain’t A Love Song are back with a new summer tune to send us off on our holidays. It’s the first taste of their third album The Light Between Us, which is due to be released on Monday. Your typical summer pop release is what the lead single is and if you’ve just come back from a festival or long summer holiday, it has probably arrived a bit late for you. Also, if you like songs to challenge you as to their meaning, this isn’t one for you.

A simple piano-led backing supports the song, which explores a youthful look at the joy summer brings. It’s about getting together with your friends and enjoying a few beers with some scantily-clad women in the baking sun we foolishly believe will appear in the British sky.

The band aren’t really known for sophisticated or clever lyric writing and the new single is no different. Summertime In The City focuses on young love and the sexual attraction that teens experience when seeing the opposite sex in skimpy summer outfits -“girls dress hot, boys go silly”. Yes, it’s juvenile but Scouting For Girls are a little bit on the kiddy side. However, this year’s uni goers will probably love it and they should because no doubt it will be a fresher favourite.

A catchy chorus means it will be around way into the winter but it is essentially just a middle-of-the-road pop track. An urban tone to the verses make it cooler than the band’s previous material and it is a step up from their flop of a second album, Everybody Wants To Be On TV. Scouting For Girls could still do with some better lyricists though.

May I introduce everyone to an Aussie singer-songwriter who has become something of a superstar in his homeland? Jacob Butler is an indie-pop artist who has ventured across the globe to shoot his latest video for UKOK? and wow, is it a catchy track!

An Australian TV talent regular, coming fifth on Australian X Factor in 2005 and reaching the top eight in the 2007 series of Australian Idol but he’s far from just a semi-successful auditionee. Setting up his record label Lions Share Recordings and releasing his debut EP Coma through it in 2009, Jacob has gone from strength to strength. National success across Australia with Coma led to a full length album with Reason, which came last year.

After a heartbreaking failed attempt to crack London back in 2006, Jacob shot his new video on his first trip back to the British capital. UKOK? pokes fun at his failures, while emphasising how lonely such a big city can be to a foreigner. A fresh upbeat sound and bags of potential to cause a stir in the UK charts mean Jacob could have a definite hit on his hands.

Something that Jacob does brilliantly in UKOK? is give us a whole new look at a city that is written about so much in both music and literature. London has been portrayed repeatedly as both a dirty, crime-ridden place as well as a glamorous, liberal city but Jacob keeps it real by offering an honest unbiased view. Incredibly refreshing all set to a catchy beat and a great commercial sound.

Keep track of Jacob’s future releases and UK gigs at https://www.facebook.com/thejbproject and https://twitter.com/jacobutler

A new London pop-punk band are hovering around the internet.
Cheerful riffs and songs that have a real story at the heart have earned the praise of Hitchin Gig Reviews, who said of them:

“Their tunes are great, catchy and have a real commercial edge. This band are young, fresh in their approach and certainly look the part. I have no doubt they will go very far!”

They’ve also received the approval of ex Busted member and songwriter, James Bourne, who can be seen listening to their song Seven Thousand Years on this exclusive YouTube video, which also features other musical members of the band’s very loyal fanbase.

Count The Days take inspiration from some of the best American pop-punk bands, including Blink 182 and New Found Glory. Although the sound does of course have that upbeat Stateside style, they aren’t short of British class, which sets them apart from others in the oversaturated market. This is how we do it in the UK and it’s actually a whole lot better.

The band are currently gearing up to release their EP Midnight Skylines, which they will be touring before unleashing on iTunes very soon. To show their commitment to the fans, Count The Days encouraged online followers to send pictures which would be used as an advert for the new record. A pretty pop-punk thing to do, no?

Listen to Count The Days and their spell-binding covers at http://www.youtube.com/user/countthedaysofficial . For news on the EP and tour dates, keep up with them at  https://www.facebook.com/pages/Count-The-Days/121855937871531 and https://twitter.com/CTDOfficial

TITLE: Madness
BAND: Muse
LABEL: Warner Bros
RELEASED: August 20th 2012

The new Muse song dropped this week and it’s already being dubbed “Muse’s best song ever” by none other than Coldplay frontman Chris Martin. Of course, he should know a thing or two about good music. It has however divided the fans and if you like your Muse to be big stadium-filling rock stars, you’re gonna hate it.

Because Matt Bellamy and co appear to have jumped on the dubstep bandwagon and mixed in a bit of 80s pop rock with it. Madness is unlike anything you’ve ever heard from Muse and as a result, it’s a real Marmite track.

Kicking things off with “ma-ma-ma-ma-ma-mad-madness” which runs like a stuck record throughout the song and then marrying Matt’s soft vocals with it, means it is all together quite a strange sound. There isn’t any argument that it’s sexy though. It grinds and sways in all the right places and it’s really quite exciting -probably more so than Fifty Shades. There are no epic Muse vocal moments but instead it has opted for the melodic approach and NME even pointed out that it has a touch of George Michael’s Faith about it.

The Queen comparison has never been more relevant on Madness. Muse are a modern day version of the legendary rockers and with the addition of the choral backing towards the end and the bursts of guitar, it makes for a late Queen impersonation. It does pick up into more of a “normal” Muse track in the last minute and you actually can see how it could completely captivate a live audience just like their other big tracks.

The 2nd Law is the new album, which is out on October 1st and Madness is the first clue as to what exactly is on it. Following on from their Olympic single Survival, which was much more classic them, Madness seems a huge leap into the unknown for them. Let’s hope it pays off.