Attention Thieves: Year Of The Jackal
Reading rock band Attention Thieves have been on quite the rise recently, with it all coming to a head with the release of their highly anticipated new album, Year Of The Jackal, and I feel I’m right in saying it delivers on the goods big time.
Straight off the bat, the opening track Crooked Teeth demonstrates what we’re in for over the course of the record: an aggressive, explosive energy created by a combo of fierce vocals, kinetic riffs and forcible drumming.
Throughout, we get fantastic writing in the likes of Coins, If You’re Not With Us and Actors Cast As Heroes; and ridiculously catchy numbers in the form of Tell Me, Hangnail and the ferocious Culture Of Fear.
This is an undeniably excellent album that should certainly do the job in getting Attention Thieves on the map as one of the finest rising rock bands in the country. If you’re looking to spend a few pennies on some new music today, ensure this is right at the top of the list. You won’t regret it.
Fresh off their signing to Hopeless Records, St Albans pop punkers Trash Boat have fired out a brand new EP under the name of Brainwork.
Simply put, this is a vibrant record chock full of high tempo, adrenaline-fueled tracks accentuated by really rocky guitars and dynamic drum work, with the most memorable having to be the closing number Eleven, a tune so relentlessly rapid that it gives the listener very little chance to catch their breath.
While it does fall on the short side, the band make the most of the little time they have, providing us with another tight EP signalling their swift rise as one of the best pop punk outfits the UK has to offer.
Exile The Traitor: Winter Eternal
In the past few years, Glasgow melodic death metal band Exile The Traitor have established themselves as one of the best in their category, and there’s no better proof of that than their latest record, Winter Eternal.
This EP was my first chance to experience the talents of new co-vocalist Wull, and he does a damn good job delivering vicious high-pitch screams, and combined with the renowned demonic Scandinavian growls of Anton, together they dish out a double dose of vocal ferocity.
Add to that blistering riffs, bass lines and drumming, all contributing to a quartet of heavy tracks, we get a delightfully brutal EP that once again shows Exile The Traitor as an essential go-to band for some of the finest death metal in Scotland today.
Final Silence: Arcadia
And on the subject of Scottish metal, Final Silence from Stirling are a band I’ve known for over a year that I quickly became a fan of after first working with them. Their debut record More Human Than Human I found to be a really good album, and now I’ve been given the opportunity to review their upcoming new album Arcadia a couple of months ahead of it’s release.
With high expectations going to it, and their first album being quite a hard act to follow, does it deliver? Damn right, it does. In fact, it’s even better.
In no time at all, Purification hits with the force of a speeding mach track, with Landscapes afterwards to kick up the pace a few notches and get the blood pumping; the music having such a heavy, brunt force behind it. Redeemer follows suit and is undoubtedly the highlight of the record, demonstrating the band’s qualities at their best, in addition to having an insane rhythm and a really memorable chorus. Other notable tracks include Solace, Sinners and the catchy as hell Tyrant.
Final Silence have absolutely topped themselves with this one. A superb record that ranks as their best work to date, maybe even among the best albums from the Scottish metal scene this year. When this launches, I implore you all to grab it ASAP.
Recently emerging from Newcastle, alternative rock band Picture Frames sought to make a statement with their debut EP, Playground, and they’ve done a pretty good job in doing just that.
The Waiting Room is a decent opening number, although I have to admit it does lack an oomph. But things properly pick up with Reverie which features enjoyable guitar work and a neat melody, followed by the catchy title track which is highlighted by a bouncy rhythm and a lot of energy behind it.
On the whole, a solid first effort from the band that is certainly worth checking out. The production could do with a touch of tinkering in the future, in order to allow their already good music to truly pop out and unravel the great potential they clearly hold.
All The Franklins: (Self-Titled Album)
From the humble town of Crawfordjohn comes a humble alternative folk band by the name of All The Franklins, who were brought to my attention via their self-titled album, and what we get here is a smashing little record.
Where Were You kicks off the proceedings very nicely with a catchy, swaying melody, and that’s only the first of many tracks which stand out on this album. Canabal Carnival features addictive guitar work and an enjoyable beat; Brothers Life is a hip tune that is very difficult to resist tapping your foot along to, and throughout they are a collection of songs with very memorable lyrics including Happy Place, Beauty Of The Breakthrough and The Show.
With the fantastic Dreams to close us out, this is a great record that any fan of the folk genre will be most certainly entertained by.
As I Was Hunted: Anthroapology
On one of my regular surfs across the realms of Facebook, I came across Edinburgh metalcore band who had just recently released their debut single Anthroapology, so I took the time to check it out and I was pleasantly surprised at how really good it was.
The vocals and screams are great, the lyrics are memorable and most notably the chorus is addicting as hell.
They’ve made a hell of a first impression, so I ought to keep my eyes on these guys, for it looks like we have quite a talented new band going here.
Poor Frisco: Take What You Want
While my hometown of East Kilbride has very little of a music scene to speak of, there are a number of talented bands that regularly emerge from here; a category that Poor Frisco fit into nicely.
The band recently put out a new single entitled Take What You Want, and while pretty short, it is an amusing tune regardless, with great vocal work, top notch guitars and a catchy beat.
Indie rock fans, take heed and give these guys a listen, you may find a new band worth becoming a fan of.