Monday, 2 March 2015

Revenge Recommends: "Bullet" by Grand Avenue

Bands like U2 and Coldplay are among the biggest on the planet. Denmark's Grand Avenue, founded in 2001, tick all the same boxes, but tick them a lot better – and they even sing in English – so it continues to surprise me that this band is not mega massive.

Saturday, 28 February 2015

Album Review: U2, "No Line on the Horizon"

Bono (on the left), shortly after his demotion to lance corporal.

2009's No Line on the Horizon represents a minor return to form after the relative disappointment of 2004’s How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb, which was a much weaker album than its predecessor, 2000's All That You Can't Leave Behind.

In terms of sales, however, the 2009 album was unable to stem the band's declining popularity. In the fairly representative UK market, No Line sold less than a third of what its inferior predecessor did, and only a quarter of what All That You Can't Leave Behind did. It also failed to generate a hit single.

Sunday, 15 February 2015

Revenge Recommends: "Brave New Soldiers" by The Pack

A brooding, squalling, and sometimes shrill classic goth-punk track from Kirk Brandon's first band, The Pack.

In addition to Brandon on vocals and guitar, the band included two Canadian brothers Simon and Jon Werner on guitar and bass, and Rab Fae Beith (Robert from Beith, a small town in Ayrshire, Scotland) on drums. The group emerged from the anarchist squat scene of South London in 1978.

Sunday, 8 February 2015

Live Review: Faith No More, Sheffield Octagon, 27th January, 1990

What can you say about a band whose guitarist falls over during the first song? Drunk? Crazy? Maybe. But that's exactly what he did as he ripped out the chords during the opening song Out Of Nowhere.

Big Jim Martin laid on the stage undeterred. Mike Patton never stands still very long, leaping about the stage like a demented fool. Goose stepping everywhere, spitting out the vocals over the blur of driving beats. Rapping like a black man one minute and screaming rage metal vocals the next, his style is unique.

Thursday, 5 February 2015

Pink Floyd's "Wish You Were Here"

The twin peaks of Pink Floyd's career are undoubtedly The Dark Side of the Moon and The Wall, but between them there also lies a verdant valley in which the brightest jewel is Wish You Were Here, the follow-up to Dark Side. The album is a reflection on their relationship with ex-band member Syd Barrett and their feelings about the music industry.

Tuesday, 3 February 2015


A BBC "rockumentary" from 2007 about space rock legends Hawkwind, with contributions past members (Lemmy, Michael Moorcock, Nik Turner, etc).

Wednesday, 14 January 2015

Preview: Jamie Cullum, Japan, 2006

Being a jazz musician is a mixed blessing. You get to be cool, but, in return, you are expected to remain underappreciated and known only to a few musical cognoscenti. If you ever get to the point of being famous enough to be recognized outside a smoky jazz club, then you have basically blown it.

Since hitting the big time in 2003 with Twentysomething, an album of covers that made him the biggest selling UK jazz artist of all time, the 26-year-old singer and multi instrumentalist, has been labeled a "Sinatra in Sneakers" and "the David Beckham of Jazz." Comparisons with legendary crooner Frank Sinatra and the current captain of the England football team might not seem so negative, but the connotation of these terms is that Cullum is jazz-lite being packaged for a bunch of kids who know nothing about it, and, in the case of the Beckham comparison, superficial and overrated.

Thursday, 8 January 2015

MTV Japan’s Local Globalization Awards


It's generally agreed that the first MTV Japan awards held at Yurakucho's International Forum in late May [2002] were less than a perfect success. Scheduled for a 7pm kick-off, the show started half an hour late, possibly because of a sudden torrential downpour. Just like the early stages of the World Cup, many of the seats remained unfilled, while some of the guests who did turn up could be seen nodding off in the lengthy pauses that dragged proceedings out by one and a half hours to finish well after midnight.

Tuesday, 6 January 2015

Album Review: White Trash, "White Trash"

This is the first offering from New York quartet WHITE TRASH, and if you like your metal funked up then this is the album for you.

Kicking off with Apple Pie the band ease us thru thirteen tracks including the sassy Po' White Trash, and the excellent Backstage Pass which shows the band at its best, proving that they have their finger on the pulse of what's going on in music right now.