I have had the privilege to assess the dabblings of Smashing Red prior to this latest venture and I was very much taken by the 'rule free' approach and the fact that the sounds emanated didn't fall into any obvious niche.  Here I have another 5 tracks to consider, I am appreciative of these EP offerings, I always prefer something to leave me wanting more or, if the material is pure pish, then I can escape with my sense of sonic well-being intact.  Whatever the outcome though I go in, give it my all and strive to be honest and fair. 

So from the Metal Postcard realms Smashing Red opening up their latest venture with 'Hot Sun' - a slow, dreamy sojourn back into the worlds of open fields where flower-power was used to encourage a switched off ambience and a certain senseless liberation.  Within the weave here though we have a pertinent warning, the world is getting hotter, nature is thankfully kicking back after years of idiot abuse and neglect, the over-populated lands are going to pay a heavy price - so much for the hippy thinking hey?  I like the clash of the floating and sinking styles, the almost acceptance of a pending doom that is temporarily kept at bay by some sweet music.  This is a cutely crafted song and has many meritorious aspects, but please don't avoid the crux of the matter. 

After the absorbing opener we get served the music loving 'I Love You' - a Kink-esque number with homage paid to the joys of noise, especially when discovered in one's pimpled youth.  Here the essence of innocent times is captured and relayed our way via an infectious lilt that shows enthusiasm is all one needs.  The tonal touches and the odd slight angular inclusion does not in any way mar this charming piece that is a mere nostalgically absorbed curio.  It isn't a song I would play every day but now and again it soothes one and helps remind one that music is a beautiful thing. 

2 songs about gardens next, namely 'Joni's Garden' and 'Magic Garden' – the shock comes initially due to no mention of Alan Titchmarsh or Percy Thrower within the acoustic undergrowth.  The first gift is a quite charming sub-hippy Beatle flow that seems it has been gently Peppered and given some relaxing chemicals.  There is a 'back to the earth' feel here with a subtle psychedelic wordage that adds to the general colorisation of the offering.  I think this calls for a time of meditation.  The second vegetative snippet 'coo's', stutters and then slowly uncoils into a tender trap of delicacy with a slight hint at westernised pondering.  The garden is highlighted, the great salvation for many species and general well-being - oh how many miss this and concrete over their own last vestiges of salvation.  I like the fact that here an oasis is taken, admired and respected - time as been taken to contemplate that which has endless depths and which will afford timeless good health.  A soothing piece if ever I heard one. 

We finish with 'He's No Angel' - a lovely drift throwing things right back to 'Kink'ed times of yesteryear that came and went and left behind just the gentlest of ripples.  The construct here is done with emphasis on keeping things almost domestic, earthy and very smooth.  The softened application is done with hues perhaps not strong enough for the spiky characters out there but for me, warrant good respect.  The band do what they do, mix and match and stretch themselves with admirable success.  This may not be my usual sonic fodder but I do like to keep things varied and this is easily slotted in to my daily playlist (well, for now anyway). 

The 5 tracks have entered my aural sphere, I have tried to sum matters up and have come away tickled in areas that too many neglect – this is how I operate, always seeking new sonic sensations – my time is well spent. 



It doesn't seem like a minute ago since Headstone Horrors first hit the stage and began plying their trade.  In fact the crew have been making a din since 2012 and have racked up some good giggage and done a few releases in that time.  Alas we live in a saturated sonic realm with too much going on for one head to keep up with.  I have seen this lot 'live', they weren't bad at all but I do need a catch up again soon.  So here we have the band’s latest release, I have been asked to scribble a review and of course that is what I do - I just hope my expectations are met and the black ink of honesty runs true. 

We begin with the eye-opening, rear hoofing speed attack of 'I Want To Be The Alien' - a song of rapid assuredness with the bass surging, the guitars thriving and the skins knocked about with wild but mighty accurate passion.  The she-throat opens, it is a joy and duly convinces, whilst words suggesting disgust, disaffection and despair fly forth with good clout and necessary clarity.  The initial pace, the no-nonsense drive and the quality of the mix gives the CD a healthy and rewarding foundation on which to rise mighty high - on this evidence we may be in for a real treat.  'Resist’ is a firm follow-up wallop, I am finding melodic flavours akin to things 'Lillington-ised' and this hits my pleasure zones with eyewatering accuracy.  The pace and the tightness of the surging package make a gratifying impression, the blue-light urgency and the anguished and yet comforting oral tones all make for a splendid second track that keeps this CD on a solid footing.  The bass weaving is magnificent, the blend of all string units is spot on, the stick slapping is precise and as said, the vocalisation is bang on the mark - the HH pack are onto something rather special here. 

'To Lighten The Weight Of Their Greed' moves in with high functioning liquidity and offers much.  The first verse is less fluid and opts for a slap and state style that contrasts quite marvellously with the free-moving chorus.  Melody is neatly maintained, a shout with clout is offered, once again the production values are excellent and the foaming spit back against the greedy grabbers and controlling bastards who get off on others misery is done with solid viciousness and stubborn defiance.  The more one plays this one the more one gets in tune with the quality and the natural application - this completes a very agreeable hat-trick. 

The fourth song in the mix is a nostalgic trip back looking at youthful times and wonderfully wasted hours.  This instalment that is labelled 'Loud And Clear' requires the band to alter the approach and create a musical strain that is more emotional.  Pace is maintained, a certain gentleness is applied to all areas but the song still parades admirable muscle and an inner strength.  Perhaps this is a song that is a trifle soppy and looking back at things through distorting spectacles of rose-tinted hues but, even as a cantankerous old git, I can still appreciate the grand way in which the effort is composed and delivered. 

'This Is Not A Test' strums, rolls, sets its stall out with no apology.  'Whoa hoas' temper matters, the following arrangement is unorthodox and so some time is needed to adjust.  Once the whole package has been digested over several sittings a grasp is had of the content and the noisy nutritional value is better appreciated.  The masses are again seen to be under the cosh, they live, they ignore, they will pay the price - here the Headstone Horrors state their views on things, it will make no difference.  This song is my least fave so far but still worthy of an 80% positivity grading, I think that reflects my feelings up to this point. 

On we go, 'From Earth To Sky' creeps in with a certain threat before the refusing lyrics come and give hint at a rebellion with a cause.  A call for unity from a pride-filled heart comes, the natural delivery of the tune impresses, I would be even further impressed if this tune were used as a flag-waving noise to get people taking note of the planet and its plight. I like the 'hey, hey' chant here, the controlled snarl and the never-say-die suggestions that keep me, and hopefully a few others, kicking back against the pricks.  There is too many nodding dogs and not enough active sods, think on, play loud, shift yer arse. ‘Through The Vast Of Night’ is airwave terror, the radio waves emit, brains turn to shit, a superfluity of victims can’t switch off.  The song plays it safe and sticks to a certain amount of regularity with verse and chorus tidy and accoutrements minimal. When the players get their heads down the power increases and an inner glow of caveman appreciation is cultivated. Not bad at all! 

'Silence Loves My Company' is a cracking donation with the front lass being put in the spotlight and duly excelling.  The throat work is marvellous, it comes into its own and makes a sincere contribution to one cracking track.  Of course, there are comparisons to be made with Ms Bondage and her Vice Squad tribe but this is merely a compliment and here the song has a wallop and merit all of its own.  The twangers and bangers make for a musical treat with good bounce, musical intelligence and the insight into what makes an agreeable tune - I am utterly impressed.  'We Call It Creeper' hammers along and does so with an obvious style and a somewhat routine drive but, this does not deny the fact that the song has solid gumption, an admirable waterproof arrangement and a sinister content akin to the foggy miasma that was borne from the noggin of James Herbert or indeed that came from the celluloid creations of John Carpenter.  The horror suggestions are in my groove, the thrust of the song may be without any great surprises and decorative touches but I have no complaints.  Beware the mists of malevolence my friends.  

By heck, the finale is here (already) and we are dragged to the final silence via the swiftly shuffled and scuffled and pertinent warning of 'Gone And Lost It' - a fast moving song with no let up.  The aim is to get people pondering what the fuck we are doing and how much we have to lose, alas we are in a mush of deadheads who can't seem to think beyond a beet glass, a cheap fashion statement and a shallow rebellious rant.  This may sound cynical, the fact is I have seen a world decline over 57 years with most people just in this pantomime just for what they can get.  I like this number, its force, it intent, its effect - I hope it works for others in the same and many different reasons. 

Headstone Horrors have produced a quite billowing and banging piece of work here, with 10 tracks (which is just enough) that clash, collide and contrast whilst working as a complete entity.  There are some sincere highpoints that get the attentive juices flowing - I do need to see these 'live' again, it would be good to get em' on a gig, I must make a note in this hectic life of mine, I see much but I miss much - make sure you don't miss out here. 



Appendage-free goings on, more rhythmic ravagings that are set to scramble the senses and put the wind up my rather vulnerable jacksie.  I should have more sense than to expose my carcass to the pincer-laden freaks of malevolent intent - I don't, so I shall gird my loins and tuck my todger away down the crack of my tensed up arse. 

Track one, 'Noiseboat' - a shuffle of fairground fuckery that spins one around, throws one sideways and leaves them in a panting heap - what the fuck was that all about.  A mere intro, a warning, perhaps a 48 second slap of nefarious filth - nothing surprises me - creative villainy at its most decadent.  Track two can almost be consigned to the same battered and buggered filing cabinet with its grimy and corrupt sense of musical decency.  'Bright Smacker' is schizoid crank wanking done in a slow and steady style with the end ejaculation failing to make its splattery presence felt.  I relisten and hope to add my own lubes of positivity but I can't and just label this as more throwaway experimentation. 

'Christer Cracker' mopes in like a cannabis addled slug, a slug unsure of where it wants to go and what it wants to do.  It eventually makes progress into the inner sanctum of the eavesdropping caverns and here takes time out to nibble at your resisting receptors and strives to force one into a position of supplication.  I bow down but stand back up - I want lyrical content. 

'Slight Stacker' is a mere mocking fuzz-fuck of the load-up vibes that came my way when waiting for Jet Set Willy aka Manic Miner to hit the screen and absorb my interest.  We have a subtle sub-suggestion of ZX Sprectrumised time-wasting rinsed through with a malevolent filth of wire warping manipulation.  This is cloying decadence not meant to entertain but simply meant to disgust - it does what it does and I am sure banishes some quite nefarious demons. 

'Insurance Manager' follows on in a more subdued way, this time with an untrustworthy aspect that provides a certain danger.  I am finding this polluting spillage a threat unfulfilled and thank the heavens when matters are over after 1 minute 16 seconds.    The ensuing fly-blown smog of indecipherable horror is not to my liking, I think that it will only find salvation if thrown in the midst of more orthodox tuneage. 

'Three F's and a D' is haywire swirling grubbed up by an unwashed bass bumble that does little to enhance the aggravating sandpaper sidewind that cripples the senses.  Short, annoying and with no intent on pleasing any area of grey matter, this is an experimental shit-splat that has missed the basin.  The three 'F's in this instance may be best estimated as 'foggy', fucked' and 'flaccid' - the 'D' is perhaps the grade of the noise. 

We close with 'If You Change Your Mind About Rock And Roll', the closest we get to anything melodic and with added oral offerings that merely state, confess and piss off out of it leaving us bewildered.  I sign off before my mind melts and I think about things a little too much. This last incident does pick up the pace and begins to groove and move but it is all a little too late in the decadent day. 

The end verdict is a big fat 'No' - I am tolerant of many vibes and review all sorts but now and again I have to hold my hands up and say I don’t like what I am hearing and so fuck off with the noggin intact.  To add though, just because I don't like the spillage here doesn't mean it shouldn't have been created and others shouldn't investigate - the world of noise needs all flavours and eternal contributions.  Now for some Northern Soul methinks (and a cuppa with the feet up - oh for the realms of sanity again). 



Unwashed rock and roll pollution here, discharged the listener's way in a raw and visceral style that I find quite appealing.  Many a session has been spent dousing my inner lugs with grimy noise, a little bit more won't do any harm I am sure.  So, via Metal Postcards Records I plunge in and am greeted with... 

...'Moped With A Gun' is a fine scuzz-scrape that moves with all the basic elements of melodic noise-making as well as a good slab of sleazoid relish.  The guitar is slung low, the cerebral gunk zoned in, the aim to rock it up with a sub-glam, no sham, retro NY feel that works a treat. The bass here pulses with sound ambition, the guitar is wonderfully unprocessed and jangle-jazzed with a naturalised hand and the sticks hold all in some kind of order (just).  I like the feeling of listening to something on the verge of being reckless but holding a tune - cracking stuff for sure. 

'Asshole On A Moped' avoids an initial collision, puts the foot on the accelerator and fuckin' cuts through the awaiting panorama with untamed zeal.  This is a real windblown beauty, racing along, breaking various zone controls and even when coughing and spluttering at the last, still showing enough fight to meet the silence with a spittle-soaked attitude.  There are no apologies made during the swift journey, this is 'have it' and 'outta the garage' exhaust noise blown your way with serious intentions.  Whoosh!   

'Tackled By Men' comes next, is a murky affair with its own tempo found and maintained - there ain't no rush.  A slow and deliberate groove comes, a suggestion of some 70's glam penetrates the grime with moments of string-bending indulgence fleetingly thrown in to keep one guessing.  This is oil-slick sonica laden with detritus and care-free crud that gets by on naturalness alone - I don't mind that at all.  The quick follow-up expulsion is 'Canadian Exit' - a glorious interjection of corruscated melody making done with a forthright zeal that will surely mow down any resistance you may have.  The bleeding wound is scabbed over, the flaking wreckage that falls our way is caused by a scratching sound-smith who can’t leave alone - the mitt molests, the acoustic injury is aggravated, the accompanying racket is an ideal escort - what great septic success is had - I love this kind of wounded noise - fuckin' marvellous.   

We hit the road again with 'Rebel Ryder' - a more controlled cruise with the gear shifts kept steady and the pumping of the pistons held in check.  This is a 'no rush' affair that travels at a mid-pace and has no real highs or lows.  One of the longer tracks and as a result, losing some of the impact that is found in other expulsions.  A few blow-outs of the exhaust are too brief and nothing in the way of a snagging hook really grabs my attention - I rate this one as the duffer in the pack or one of those that you have to be in the mood for. 

Another slow paced song ups the ante due to it have a high cock-sure factor and a certain oil-spill sleaziness that is right out of a back-street dive where biker chicks get horny and greased up dudes get lusty.  'Can't Get What I Want' seems borne from frustration and yet still has a solid sanguinity that emanates from the deep-grooved grind and general arrogant acoustica.  I like this early NY feeling hip-grinding dirtiness - the vibe, the easy rhythm and the general unshaven, unscrubbed approach works a treat. 'Gotta Roll' is a sinister number - it deals with a dude who keeps his victims locked away whilst he goes about his everyday tasks.  Alongside the feeling of unease there is a paradoxical comfort in the ghetto groove, it is a clash of vibrations that collides and compliments with little fuss.  From the initial innocent strums a weight comes and a darker sub-layer is found - I think it works mighty well. 

The last 3 are here and with a few double strums, a hurtling bout of chain-rattling madness 'Vroom, Vroom' travels with huge rush and a gratifying impact with any bystander duly left standing and staring.   After the initial stuttering kick-stark we are whipped by the plumes of roused detritus before a brief cruise is had prior to the final headlong surge into oblivion - nice.  'Bad, Bad Boy' eases up, goes on a tourist tonal cruise with a Doll-i-fied glam sleaze invading and a hazy, lazy recline emanated throughout the ensuing  journey.  I rate this as sex-scuzz for those who like a dirty ride and enjoy the feel of a good vibrating beast between their sweating thighs - I hope you get the drift.

The closure is slagged under the tag of 'Million Dollar Moped' and is par for the course.  DIY and nasty this jerk and roll session of free-wheeling goodness is a colliding and clashing affair with moments given free rein and others kept in nervous check. Ad hoc reactions are thrown in, the usual outback twangs and drawling vocals come and we are left at the end wondering if the song will sound the same when played again.  This one lacks a structure that is easy to initially grasp but that only gives us a reason to take a little more time and grapple with the grindings.  I do just that-  it isn’t my fave track, it does what it does though. 

Despite the last number not nobbing my zones of appreciation I still find this collection of cacophonies quite a treat.  There is gumption, passion and a fine unwashed oil rag of acoustica to get soiled by.  I have a penchant for things unhygienic, here I am the veritable pig in stinking sonic shit. 



Entropy are a relatively new band, in fact it was only last year that they played their first gig and that was (luckily for me) on a Fungalised stage.  These are a grand bunch of lads, laden with zeal and passion and are only set to get better and better.  3 viewings to date (2 gigs pending) and I am rather taken - this for me, is what it is all about, the raison d'etre of my sonic existence - DIY pure and no bollocks.  So with their first 4 recording tracks sent my way I was on the edge of my seat wondering if expectations would be met and the sword of honesty would be kept tucked away and discordant decapitations would be minimal.  Here is what I think, feel, live and breathe - have it. 

I dabble with the 4 tracks, juggle, jive and play - the order they come out in is of no consequence, and first to get my digits pressing lettered keys is the quite fuckin' stupendous 'Side Effect' - an offering awash with healthy power moves, a gruff and abrasive feel, some tidy stick manipulation and the expected clear and ruddy gratifying vocal delivery.  The song flows from the acoustic piping without hindrance with only a midway skin molestation the nearest we come to a breather.  From the hesitant bass through a semi-skid to the initial power and rewarding first verse this is a super treat from the off.  The chorus is delicious with a magnetising lick that will have the ones in the know singing along.  In the midst of matters the skin whipper is left to rule the roost and clatters and batters his kit into grovelling submission with an episode that neatly breaks up the song and leads into the last flamboyant throes - fuckin' marvellous is the verdict. 

'Jawbreaker' is always a 'live' fave, here it builds with sanguinity, takes a brief pause and then nails the first chorus.  The intent of the musical machinery is noted, the room given for the vocalist to do his stuff is perfect and the tonsil-wobbling twat at the front does what he does oh so well - top stuff.  The grinding buzz of the strings is invigorating, the slapped tympanics reinforcing and the complete shebang bowls me over.  As I said, I expected, I didn't reckon I would get anything like this.  A taut and intense inner burst comes, a natural reaction is taken before we head on with all focus on making a good noise.  The last hoorah is scintillating - well done chaps. 

'Voices' is a work of beauty and is the pick of the pops as far as this prickly sonic pirate goes.  The opening throes show a belief, a lack of fear and after a salvo, a cut, a holler, we fly into a song awash with youthful energy, class-A tones of addictive levels and a popped and punked hybrid that is both rhythmic, rabid and fuckin' rockin'.  The end execution and the whole orchestrated piece is a joy and when the volume is cranked up one is ready to ping, pogo and put the noggin through a window.  The soaring chorus cuts are fresh, blown through and tidily echoed whilst the joy de vivre is eternally oozing right up until the very last pulsation.  For me this completes 3 crackerjack sounds, I enter the final track with hopes determined not to be dashed. 

'Broken' chops in, careens and during the first verse has a relish not to be surpassed. A frustration, a disgust and vigorous disgruntlement with the current state of play this is a foaming and fucks-given escapade with the band aware, animated and having their say.  A few cute touches, much forthright driving and an end mix that is both raw, complimentary to the bands style and with a distinct under-processed DIY streak that gives the whole creation true lifeblood and a believable approachability.  The slow and steady switch-off is a gamble, but is smoothly included and in no way alters the overall running of the song.  In fact when matters rise once more one is ready to go for it with a born-again desire.  Smashing stuff. 

And so, 4 tracks, 4 reasons why you should see and support this band.  The crew have taken their time, picked their gigs with care and are doing things in their own way - after 57 years on this planet and almost just as many dousing my head in noise, I am still happy to say that when I hear new dinnage like this I get one helluva thrill.  It is in the blood, the DIY passion is irrepressible, what can I do?  Oh yes, prepare myself for the next release - another 4 tracker would be just perfect. 



If punk is indeed a thing and it is based on in yer face noise with no fucking about then I suppose The Hate are best described as one of these bands.  I care not for any label, I just know that when this unit has graced a Fungalised stage they have been fuckin' spot on and they don't waste time dragging matters along.  The CD here was passed my way and listened to whilst I hammered the punchbag - it helped get a good sweat on and keep the fists flying.  I am not going to piss arse about here and will compliment the CD's style with fast, to-the-point' evaluations of each song, I hope it does matters justice. 

Track One, 'All About' and a subdued strum, a rising skin thump before a 'oomph' is given and an Oi-esque bollock-kicker is delivered in a typical, appealing cobblestoned manner.  No nonsense verses, a good easy snag and sing chorus with the tympanics nicely twatted and the riffs posted with a buzzsaw danger.  The song comes, fucks off and leaves an acidic aftertaste - up yours.  'War Crimes' picks up with a slow and stated string section whilst the drums add rhythmic prowess.  A pause and then matters cut to the quick with all hands to the deck and steering the good ship SS Hate over a whipped up ocean of great discontent.  The waves are lashed, the spume spat far and wide and elements of hardcorian abuse are thrown into the melting pot to keep one guessing.  This is once again a quick sonic arse-shafting and I am bent over, with the cheeks pulled apart, ready for more.

'Political Agenda' is a favourite, I like the undulation and melody of the strings, the way the gruff gob violence keeps in line with the motif and the clobber-tastic stickwork that injects an extra wallop in the overall punch.  This is a song that is to the point and obvious punkery but in no way is any the worse off for it.  Something within the spiked soul cannot resist this kind of spillage, all common sense and reasoning is thrown out of the window - sorry folks I just can't help it.

'Good Time' is a cruel humping slag of sound that fucks the senses without apology or with any sense of decency.  Hurtful cuts of guitar wanking invade, the heave ho of the acoustic buttocks is incessant and the end orgasm is one of blood and sonic spunk best tasted when the mood is only exactly right.  This bitch takes no prisoners.  'Totalled' has more control and in the whorehouse of sound is a more gratifying session of sexual sonica.  The thrill however is not as great as the preceding number and the overall danger levels are lacking and so we get a session of molestation that falls into the shadow of greater poundings.  This is still a good way to relieve ones stress though and my thumbs are still up (up where, who knows).

'Born Too Late' is a peach.  From the off the hook has me addicted and the delicious verses and steaming chorus assaults are a delight to my damaged lugs.  The roaring, the soaring, the general pummeling is a fuckin' pleasure and on my next 'live' viewing of this lot this is one I shall be waiting for.  This is razor-edged aggression with the intent to slice and dice any fuckwit with the temerity to question its value - you have been warned.  'Nothin' At All' is thrown our way next and blasts forth with orthodox fashion before exploding in an orgy of demanding dinnage.  The crew go at matters full-tilt, the call for truth and honesty rather than bullshit and lies rings a bell in my ticker, the overall balls-out action and muscle flexing mania of the creation is impacting and rock solid - I have no complaints with this belligerent beauty.

The last two come, the first is the ever hopeful 'Tomorrow's Yours' - a forthright piece that has a paradoxical edge with one end offering, the other taking away.  The underlying sinew and the blatant meat on the bone make sure that the band cannot be accused of easing up on the gas or letting slip the intensity - there is no nonsense here.  The final effort strides in on seizured, stamping feet with the aim to kick up the dirt into your face and leave you screwed.  'God Save The King' is nasty, toxic and spat with vehement desire.  The king can go fuck himself, he is an emblem of imbalance, this number increases my disgust at a topsy-turvy world with slanted thinking and worshippers of false idols.  We are fucked if we continue to keep on indulging in this idiocy. I turn up the volume here, banish some demons, spit forth some frustration and throw a brick in my royalist neighbors face - it feels fuckin' good.

The Hate may be old school punk, they may call on a few clichés, they may offer nothing new - but so fuckin' what!  They are up there, doing it, ranting and raving and delivering music with necessary clout.  You can piss on all the hairy-fairy tweak and twang showboat noise out there, you can flush the half-arsed rebel music down the u-bend - this stuff still works and still has me salivating - it is just the way it is.



By heck it seems an age since I reviewed anything by this lot.  Having seen them recently though it was ruddy good to note the lads are as keen as ever and producing some wonderful 'live' sonic spillage for we denizens of the DIY mire to utterly wallow in. A glance through the songs on the CD under scrutiny revealed a few I was more than familiar with and several that I had yet to get to aural grips with - a perfect balance methinks.  So, with the juices dripping from areas best left unmentioned, a few tingles nearby and a stiffening of the pecker (it really is a DIY problem) I put the acquired disc in the player and listened in several times over.  I came up with some initial thoughts, then some secondary inklings before I cracked off an assessment.  If you are interested in what a low-down dabbling dog thinks of such good-to-honest earthy music then read on.  If you think you know better, are of an idle persuasion or are too busy living a socialised tick box sonic life I think tha' best piss off now.

'Secrets' is a melodic effort that certainly sticks in the noggin.  The tune flows well, the mix is sweet but the content rather shady with a lying bint exposed as a cock-happy deceiver in a matter-of-fact 'so be it' kind of way.  I am not a fan of shag-around behaviour, I like the ethos behind decency, love and faithfulness and so, as I listen to this, I tap my feet but have an unsettled feeling whilst hoping the two committers of carnal crime get a good dose of the pox - one has to be consistent tha' knows.  Even though the material is not to my liking the song itself is a sound opener.  'Suck On That' is a gruff follow up that is committed to disc in a more forthright and orthodox punky fashion.  A spittle and spite chomp with a backstabber given his comeuppance, much to the delight of the cacophonic creator.  The touches and twists are all routine and lack anything original but the band get by with sharp musicianship, a forceful intent and a song that lacks idiot affectation - solid stuff indeed.

'Wild, Wild Time' is a musical toss-about regarding a bunch of goons going on the lash in foreign shores - you know the score - Brits abroad and all that shittery.  One for the pissheads here and those who consider a mad time is only had when booze and drugs are involved with no thought of arson, bestiality and murder - ooh the slack bastards.  For me this is a sunshine number many will adore, it is easily put, lacks depth but does what it does - I call this the weakest number thus far, many will disagree.

'Age Of The Machine' is a good mover, warns about the wired up and plugged in madness that is ruining the world and the lives therein.  Heads are frazzling, social skills lacking, fat building whilst asses become idle.  The idiot humans become confined to the rear ranks, control is disappearing, the end is nigh - so fuckin' what! I find this a composite with meat on the bone and a nice dark edge to proceedings - Is it the best song yet?  You decide!  For me the best song is 'History (Tear Out The Pages)' - a mature and pertinent song with depth, a flashlight urgency, a gritty verse and a contrasting and simply effective chorus that has an honesty and outlook that cannot be denied.  The surge is potent and the grit rewarding - the only blip is that the song could have been given a bit more juice in the production room - that is a minor critique though but one I hope the band bear in mind for their next release.

'Armageddon' pounds in with a mid-paced, high drama before unwinding itself with tight and perspired effect that works mighty well.  There is a constipated threat, a releasing promise, the times are warning us and so are the band with a real doom-laden pounding that has much muscle, great weight and an unstoppable impetus - just like the kick back from the natural world in fact.  Listen, pogo, fuckin' do something you deadheaded cunts.

'The Fox' tumbles, finds its feet and quickly pulses beneath twilight acoustica.  A beast on the move with a reason to live is the name of the game here, a man with a reason to take a life is in the mix with fear created and the discomfort of inane cruelty exposed.  Tally ho and the twats ride forth whilst something innocent suffers and those with a perversion are sated.  A song to take heed of! 'Any Hole Is A Goal' is crass and cheap and for me has content not worthy of the sweetly textured music.  The lightly flicked tones, the easy swing and the atmosphere caught are surely worthy of more erudite lyrics - this one could have been the best song of the lot but as a non-shag-around chap I find this a severe let down.  I reckon the band should do this one again with something more serious to say - it would be a fuckin' beauty.  

'Punk Rock Girl' is spiked sonica of a traditional arrangement and just does what is does.  It is a sing-a-long effort with a few trimmings, an orthodox set up and nothing really to find fault with.  A song to not read too much into, just get yer beer, play loud and celebrate something rather harmless - Hospital Food do this stuff very well indeed.  'Derek Shags Convicts Wives' is a tale regarding some vandalism and a cowardly cunt who dips his dick into sluts who deserve nothing better.  A dose of clap, a darn good slap would soon fix this situation but there ya go - such is the world of scum.  Once again the HF lads take a tacky subject, add their views and rattle away with a hard-hitting affair that doesn't hold back, just like the man at the centre of the song in fact (ooh the cheap prick).

'Bastard' is a gritty shit-shoveler that 'nah, nahs' snarls and moves with a certain fluidity.  With a mix of quick moving music, a gob off against the preaching pricks and some good to honest rhythm this is quintessential HF noise with a sound simplicity but with a certain solid arrangement.  'Voice Of Reason' quickly follows up and is a good song that lacks that final finishing 'oomph'.  I think given a better production and some full-on welly this could be a real tasty bit but what we get is a decent song that has too many inner air-pockets for its own good and a distinct lack of wire fuzz and stick clobber.  I know this may sound harsh but my job as a reviewer and mate is to get the best out of the band, it is only fair.  A certain twist of the volume button does help matters though - get it racked up on high folks.

We close with the unconvincing 'Weirdo' - a construction that strums in, has a certain plodding feel and just goes about its business with a frustrating sedentary feel and an inner switch-off that has the drums and gob produce an insert that throws me somewhat off kilter.  The vocalist seems to eventually crack, I sign off before I do too.

I am a long term Hospital Food fan, I remain fair and honest and here I have got to say the fulfillment of the 'live' promise is not had.  I wish I had some dosh to throw these guys into a full-on, all singing and dancing recording studio and let them really get the best out of themselves but - alas I am a potless pirate with passion and a desire to remain honest.  This is a decent album, many will like it, some won't, and a few awkward buggers like me will always be demanding of more (and there ain't nowt wrong with that).  The squeeze is now on for the next offering, guys go blow my socks off and ask me to 'Suck On That' – my oral orifice is waiting!



A Texas-Based unit mixing the melodies and just doing what seems natural.  Again I am a pure as the driven snow when it comes to knowing anything about the creative forces here, and as you should ruddy well know, I like it that way.  Time is given and thoughts rolled around the belfry before any arthritic finger hits a key, the aim is always to get the balance between spilling an assessment that is natural, non-processed and fair - here we go again. 

'Next To Me' is tinkled tiptoe ballad-ising with a strong emotive essence tattooed deep within the flesh of the construct.  It is a surprising opening moment and has enough character and somewhat mystery within the mix to keep one intrigued.  The yearning and the lust combine to make one panging piece of neatly arranged music to laze along with.  The added vocals further enhance this somewhat needful and moody piece.  We need an upswing in noise next and we duly get the feisty dirt fest of 'Rock (Your City) Tonight' - a real grubby grinder that plods along in an unhurried fashion with a promise to tear it up and make a fuckin' mess. The controlled passion and promise of a 'rock out' are delivered with a simplistic orchestration and this creation is best deemed as a survivor on the detritus of raw dinnage.  It is basic rock and roll shabby chic - executed with a sprawling drawling accent - like it or loathe it, your call. 

Textured strings, a careful oral offering and something to ponder further - these are my thoughts on 'Brothers In Arms Part 2'.  A loss is dealt with and yet the heart still bleeds with untold needs - I am quite taken by this touching and sweetly arranged number.  The delicacy is assisted by a feeling of tragedy, an emotive strain that sometimes gets a little too much.  The whole aching intention is played out to a certain exactness and what is meant is achieved in a terse and effective outpouring. 

'D2TD' is a strange alien-ised visitation borne from Planet Vex for those of a nervous and impatient nature. A message is relayed but is too far in the shadows and so I am left floating in a vacuum without much of a clue as to the intent of the creation.  In this position I can take a more detached viewpoint and judge the song on its magnetic melody and eerie ambience - it is an odd number that is best played amidst a more riotous collection. 

'J. O. 1.' sneaks in beneath the crack in your receptive door, like a shifty sonic mouse looking to creep up yer trouser leg and nibble away at your resistance.  The gist of the song (as far as I can make out) is to lead one astray and take them away from the shackles and restraints of everyday life and fly free - albeit under the oceanic depths.  I find this a mere pressure release, a therapy session for those with a need to take off - I think to some degree the creation works. 

'Live At Joeys' has a submerged Peter Gunn whilst ad hoc tomfoolery and tuneless fuckery overrides the rhythm.  I am at a loss as to what the point is of this inclusion, maybe a homage to a bar, a capture of some real life or just a need to fuck around and dabble - whatever the reasoning I am not keen at all.  I dash on and enter the next splat of noisy experimentation.  'Zoom On The Can' begins with a sedated boom that reminds me of a doped up E. L. O. vibe.  Twists turn into torments as misfires and disconnections take place and random shut downs attempt to screw the sub-serenade.  The orchestration is loose but efficient and the whole shebang is one of semi-soporific proportions done with a space age tinting - this is no bad thing. 

'Roger Exists' is one last expulsion of grating annoyance - it lasts 18 seconds, I reckon that is too long. 

So I have had a bash at something I really don't like or understand.  I do know though that some people need to create and need to do what they feel and that should never be stopped.  Just because I am out of sync here or rate this one as almost unlistenable I still think matters should proceed and the DIY ethos maintained.  I hate not liking everything I hear, I hate being honest but this one is definitely not for me although there are one or two moments that do tickle the senses. 



A local band to me, one with much experience in the tank due to the players having done the rounds in many guises.  I expected a quality production with some well-crafted tunes - I was ready to scribble after only a couple of rotations but put myself in check as eager beavers usually trip up and it is far better to be a tortoise of trepidation and try and get things as spot on as possible - here's trying. 

The first two tracks are taken as a double-header and in truth I enter the ensuing punctuating silence with fuck all to criticise.  Both tunes are sharply crafted, exhibit a noisy know-how that is always gratifying to encounter and with a most appealing je ne sais quoi I find myself quite stricken.  The opening gambit entitled 'Kingsway Flyer' is a tale of despondency and a need to escape with a familiar soundbite included from a tale that was 'Made In Britain'.  This adds to the docu-real-life feel and gives the song extra substance.  In truth though, even if these accoutrements were taken away, this is still a thriving song with lots of vigour and may I add, a certain stubbornness.  The chaser needs to be something special to make the opening one/two salvo a real impacting moment.  The follow-up to the opening hefty jab is a crunching surprise that really bowls me over.  'Cosa Nostra' is a minor underground classic borne from a band who never spat their dummies out but who stood firm and fought their corner.  One member is no longer with us, he was a gent, this is a fitting moment to ponder his presence and his manipulation of his 4-wired weapon of musical war.  The original is a pip, this is even better with greater texture and a better end production that gets the most out of a great song.  A quite stupendous moment. 

The third song in is a more sedate affair with a more laboured flow that takes a little extra time to adapt to.  I listen, the first impression is of something average, the second listen earns greater favour and then, after more rotations my feelings considering 'Change To Colour' are more than generous with the thumbs raised with sanguine assuredness and the foot tapping with ensnared acceptance.  A world is changed, a presence comes and a soul saved, I can relate to this as an old 'erbert who was floundering and then who was highly motivated - love is the key, enjoy the vibes here. 

'Precious Time' pounces in, has a very new-school feel (new school as in the early 00's) and goes at it with a pattern that is slightly ad hoc and off the cuff but with a certain magnetism that is subtle and quite invasive.  This isn't my normal cup of sonic swill but I do like to vary the head bombardments and this is far from offensive material.  All areas are neatly blended, some may love it more than me and the inner wire wankings will certainly tickle the undercarriages of those metalised. 

I grab a batch of two, 'Sting Like A Bee' is reggae-ragged - comes on minimalist touches and mutterings.  We are given hint at something positive, after the initial blurry verse matters gain in clarity and a confidence kick is emanated with serious intent.  We are soon back into areas laid back, a contrast is had with the band showing a willingness to stretch themselves and avoid all this punk rock tick box pissery.  By staying clear of the sonic strait-jacket so many willingly sacrifice themselves to a certain success is had.  This is a sweet inclusion.  Next and drums palpitate, strings prepare and then we are on our way with a regular riffage.  'Don't Let It Go' is a eureka moment, an epiphany has been had, the song is a celebration of the fact with the underlying bass a very attractive component that keeps all areas functioning to a vibrant and sprightly level.  The arrangement is perhaps the most orthodox so far but the precision, the layering and the efficiency make this an easy winner. Sometimes the easy option is best, and if you can throw a few nobs on top and use much nouse you are usually guaranteed a winner - just like here in fact. 

'Whiplash Jack' has a crisp and assured intro, an honest and uncomplicated first verse with the tympanics solid and keeping the stringmen and singer in line.  The tale of a bent bastard is neatly posted through our cerebral mailboxes and thoughts arise of a mass of deviant fuckwits all on the make and trashing the trust within society. Despite the subject matter the band do well to keep a lid on their tempers because the corrupt fucks under the spotlight really do need taking out.  I like this one, can't you tell - harrumph. 

The last trio to trespass into my turnip begins with the crepuscular twinkling’s of 'Abandon Ship'.  As matters develop I find this one a rather tame voyage that doesn't fulfil the initial atmospheric potential.  The production and the musicianship are all fine and dandy but do not really grab me and so I am left standing on the shoreline waving ‘tatty bye' to this one.  These thoughts though do not suggest a duff tune, it is just that I can't like everything and will not feign favour as a cover up.  The penultimate offering is slapped down under the tag of 'The 1883' - a song that relates to Heaton Norris Rovers (now known as Stockport County FC) and the joy that football brings to many sport-loving folk.  This is a fair-to middling number that could have been given a little more Oi-esque clobber methinks but it is still rewarding to see a band do things their own way and pay homage to the game they love.  I prefer non-league football and have no time for tribalism but I am sure many fans will love this and embrace the gist of the jangling.  Not a bad do at all, not as good as Denton Town's No 1 hit back in 1973 though ha, ha. 

We close with the aptly named 'Clocking Out' - a song that immediately reminds me of early 80's new wave weavings borne from the realms of bands testing new waters.  This song is tidy, has a good depth and deals with the mundane work routine so many get strangled by.  The weekend release is celebrated by a fine chorus followed by more angular inclusions.  From the initial bass punctuations, via the inner goodness to the final flourish that is breeze blown and very fresh – it is just what I needed. 

So a good CD methinks, plenty of weight and polish and some strong musicianship.  To be fair this is what I expected, as said these musos have done the rounds and are no spring chickens - you now have the choice to pluck or fuck - my bit here is done - whoosh. 



From the ashes of a band I used to deal with, namely Rising Strike, came a message from the dark recesses of the World Wanked Web. The sender of the wordage was a guy called Wiv, a lovely fellow I remembered well who was now laden with sprogs and wife and yet was still dabbling with music. The outcome to a terse exchange of digital text was a request to review his latest solo project which I, as a keen and enthusiast dabbler of DIY, duly accepted. I listened over several weeks, sometimes fully clothed, sometimes in the nude and now again whilst dressed as Huckleberry Vim, the age-old retailer of cleaning products. After receiving another dose of cerebral counselling I created this review of the tonal product, this I did whilst using a pair of attachable lobster claws (clever hey).

With the silver circle rotating, the pincers pecked at the qwerty, track one was digested and I began my scribblings.

We open with 'None Of The Above' - a soundbite, a push and a roughening up. A pounding comes and then the main thread of the track. Disgust at the political situation is the theme in this opening gambit that has weight, blends tones both UK and US whilst keeping one wondering. The components all need the assistance of the volume button to get the best out of the song and patience is needed to grasp the swinging thread - I consider this one a steady opener. More political ravings come via the more orthodox strains of 'Uncertainty Lies Ahead'. The vocal applicator finds himself burdened with a lack of assuredness, a million doubts and a future of fuckwittery. The verse has spite and good energy, the chorus is easily fallen in line with and as a whole the creation moves well. The inner break that is laden with tension and demon-banishing may be a good or a bad idea - I am still uncertain.

'Anti Social (Please Subscribe)' begins in a laborious manner and takes a little too long to make its point. Eventually the guts of the song are spilled with a good riff and a fine intent. The heads are rattled by a bombardment of media effluence; the result is that no one is free. The observant words are backed by a tetchy tune and a somewhat authoritative pronouncement - especially during the sub-chorus cuts. Not a bad do at all.

'Blame' is a sad song that looks at a world turning to shit from a position of hopelessness. I like this one a lot, there is a distinct honesty that doesn't shy away from being culpable and doesn't run and hide like many in this 'not my fault' society. I think the musical interlude is a mistake somewhat as it impedes great promise, but these are the desires of the dabbler and to curb such acts would be wrong. Each side of the musical pondering though we have a song with good clout and a good message. 'Withering Plights' once again looks at the desperate situation that society is in and how it is all self-inflicted. Sober tones welcome, matters are shaken up with hearty gusto and passion before statements are made and an old-school chorus chunk is delivered in fine style. The ethos of the concoction is sound - fuck the system before it fucks your mind. The 'whoa hoas' are splendid and lead into a simple but impacting chorus - but only if you are truly listening mind!

'Red Leader Standing By' is one I am not overly keen on, it has too many suggestions of Americana punkery that came our way during the 90's and left many lovers of things more straightforward way behind. It is the verses that impede my favour and the rapping drums that get on my troubled tits. I like the chorus though and so some salvation is had, just! 'Up And Shout (shh)' is a rapid rodent shooting up the trouser leg of the listener and causing great consternation around the nether regions due to the flustered feel and overspill of activity that comes. One has to be in the mood here, if the head is a clutterbucket and patience thin the song will not garner much praise, if the energy levels are high though and something feisty is needed then this may just work

Into the back 5, 'Fools Paradise' leads the way, cutting and thrusting with meaty relish before tumbling upward and manifesting itself in a pure-open hearted way with the message being to face up to your responsibilities and stop living in a bubble of ignorance. The structure of the song is well thought out, the delivery impacting and the snarl factor done in such a way as to convince rather than distort and deter. 'Cease And Resist' begins with sound texture, dawdles a little too long before the cobbled rough ride of the verse quickly leads us into a defying chorus with savory chomp. The only debilitating factor here is the brief pauses that seem to be catches of breath rather than deliberate musical touches. I know that the latter is what they indeed are but I feel as these cooling moments don't work. A song marred by being overcooked when a simple 'resist and run' rampage would have been enough. The rally call towards the latter end though is a slight salvation.

'Refuse To Break' opens on brisk, breezy drums, a subdued guitar lick and a reliable bass manoeuvre. The verse that comes is semi-clad, collides with the fully attired chorus and so provides the listener with a clash and compare concoction that is not easily digested over one or two listens. Time is needed, time that is laden with concentration, this may be a problem for some in the crash, bang, wallop lifestyle - their loss methinks.

The CD is nearly done, 'Utopia Is Burning' is one of the more obvious and orthodox songs and is perhaps one of the easiest to grasp. A real straight-ahead creation with another wonderful message - 'do your best'. Many will interpret this as to get what they want, I consider these folk self-serving cunts of the most foul order. I listen, use it as more fuel to add to the fires that keep me doing my bit without thought of self-gain. I think the song has done its job here.

We finalise matters with 'Leave The Light On', a song with a slow start and a modus operandi that is too similar to all that has gone. The chorus call is worthy of attention though and pleads that the eyes open and action, as one, is taken. A consistent track with a good sense of timing and a fine emotive angle, as a stand alone it works, as a finishing piece I am afraid I wanted more.

For a first effort from a solo creator this is a very admirable and worthwhile effort and if fear is abandoned and experiments made, I reckon a follow-up offering should easily trump this 12 tracker. I would like a snippet of the riff-up and orthodox, a slap of skank, more raving against the machine and some real unexpected surprises - one has gotta squeeze the best out of folk don't ya know.

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