Sunday, 22 July 2012

ill Manors- Plan B

Rated: A Kind of Magic

A well done soundtrack of a film about London surviving and violence. Plan B is back with an album that is exactly what you expect about a sountrack and very narrative even have the little chats from the film that make it bit confusing but overall is a great album.At first the lead single 'ill Manors' made me laugh, to be honest sound kind of a joke,but turns out the album is better and stronger-

Determined to do something commercial but that doesn't have that massive consuption feeling and inspired by the 90's vibe of blending of rock and rap the songs are really enjoyable and good. Songs like ' Great Day For A Murder'  have that urban flow mixed with angry guitars and with a point of view, very old school and it does has that great sense that you're listening to music that probably is not the best but has something charming and gives and is quality and pure. And the same nice sensation of  listening to vintage styled tunes comes in many songs on the album like the brilliant and more poppy 'Playing With Fire (Featuring Labrinth)' or 'I Am The Narrator' which samples 'The Carnival of the Animals: The Aquarium' and make it really good and familiar. There are also songs that have an vintage vibe but more modernized like 'Drug Dealer' ,with a circus beat,  and 'Pity The Plight' which is more like out from mid 00's with marvelous music.

Finally Plan B ditched the Michael Bubble style and the poppy
tunes and now delivers something more rappy and credible (more personal). Although it still a reminder in songs like the brilliant 'Deepest Shame' that has amazing music and is a bit of a slow down. There's also 'Live Once' which yet again has and very old 90's vibe is more positive but still is a reminder ,as-well, of previous Plan B albums. The songs released to date aside from first single,  'Falling Down' and  'Lost My Way', gives you a clue of the growth of Ben Drew career and describe slightly what the album is,a soundtrack of film based on hard life and songs narrate that superbly. 

Probably the most gutted and sincere Plan B work, which is weird because is about a film so is from a character perspective and not suppose to be very personal, but it is. Ben captured the feeling  of the movie and translate it to music that gives the same feeling. it haunts you and makes you create pictures or imagine the film. Ben took it seriously which is fantastic cause is so notorious, too much effort but good, a great story teller. At the end it let you a positive feeling of what doesn't kill you make you stronger and to not forget but to ditch off what doesn't set you free and start doing something.

Recommended: Playing With Fire, Deepest Shame, Live Once,Falling Down
Not so much: The Runaway

Sunday, 8 July 2012

Hold Fast by The Crookes

Rated: A Kind of Magic 

The 2nd album from a band that means fun and pop, and does incredible. The joy fact is all over the album from an amazing electric introducing song of the album 'Afterglow' to the very last song. All songs are playing in such a good harmony which is a bit hard to find nowadays. 

The style of the album is unique,sounds like a good mix of Maximo Park, a poppy version of Babyshambles and shreds of The Smiths. The sound is varied but always on same string  so don't really goes bonkers.A bit of early days of rock and roll is in songs like 'American Girls' which sounds so American golden age of rock and roll and fantastically this leads to 'The Cooler King' that has more a 1960's style and have the amusement fact more exposed. Another song that have a good 60's vibe is 'Sofie' but the sound is brought to modern days properly not destroying a genre. More modern and party songs includes 'Holds Fast' which is so enjoyable and rocky and defines the concept of the band and album 4 minutes. 'Maybe in the Dark' is the more dancy tune or jumpy very up-beating and edifying with energetic guitars and lovely percussion. The Party goes on with a more beat-to-follow song 'Stars' the voice is somehow melancholic, well not entirely, but gives a magnificent feel that catch you easily, and made you rejoice thoroughly. 

The slowdowns are more like chill-downs songs, the joy stills there eventhough are not party songs are twisted to be entertaining. 'Sal Paradise' contents beats of 1980s alternative rock but bring it to this age in a very personal The Crookes style. Another song that is made to delight is  'The I Love You Bridge' which is a brilliant close, rawness played by instruments and a powerful voice, sort of a "post britpop" track that turns all the energy of the whole album into a alleviation feeling that explodes superbly to a great finale.

Probably not the best album of the year but worth more than just one listen, is so enjoyable and has no lows just 1 forgettable song , 'Where Did Our Love Go', which is relaxing but average.The album is a refreshing concept and gladly the band are trying to push Pop music further from commercial electronic-dubstep dive pop is living. 

Recommended: Maybe in the Dark,American Girls,The Cooler King,Hold Fast,The I Love You Bridge

Days Go By- The Offspring

Rated:(I can't get no) Satisfaction

The years are taking their toll to the band and amazingly sounding the same, in most of the tracks, but the big hard effort the band made is shown.But Album has redeemable tracks and sound so is not that bad.

As soon as the first song,'The Future Is Now', you can recognize easily The Offspring,is almost like an old one but as it goes forward you feel this band is elder and repetitive, the song also have a strange twist. The album moves to the next song 'Secrets From The Underground' which is sort of an forced anthem but is quite good and one of the best in the album, incredible music. Other songs that sound like old stuff from the band but forced are 'Hurting As One', which is plain and forgettable, and 'Dividing By Zero' that is fast and energetic but still not giving a amazement fact, like the album as a whole.

The sound in some songs like in the long 'Days Go By' is very 80's like Bon Jovi but with the originality of The Offspring. 'I Wanna Secret Family (With You)' is another song that sounds like 1980's and familiar but it is more enjoyable like the second half of the album. The sound takes a ride to the Punk scene yet again in the 80's but with bits of The Clash (or a rip off, 'Guns From Brixton' American style) and a little modern Gorillaz-ish twist in the chilling good song 'Oc Gun'. And even more from the same decade but now with a mainstream horrible twist, 'Cruising California (Bumpin’ In My Trunk)', which is cool but sounds a lot like an awful track from electronic pop to the masses like Black Eyed Peas mixed with Michael Jackson's Billie Jean (My brother described like "WTF! is This Katy Perry?" maybe they sampling ? California Girls )so the sound is very familiar and catchy but gets to annoying and that's sort of the idea in the whole album.

At some point the band try so hard to modernize their style and sounds pretty hideous like in 'Turning Into You' which have serious "WTF! is this shite music" moments and is very long, kind of a torture.

Not everything is wrong the band reached a good (THE) sound in incredible tracks like 'All I Have Left Is You' that is a slowdown to the album but what a song! it's so charming and powerful you can't even feel that is the longest song in the album it goes so fast. And the band close with a flourish,'Slim Pickens Does The Right Thing And Rides The Bomb To Hell' (don't mind the long name) is more punk, happy and fast like the band used to be but grown so is probably how the album should sound but unfortunately is the last song so lets a hunger and a need that should been filled before. The rerecord of 'Dirty Magic' is good nothing much to say is not very different from original (1992) so is brilliant just voice sound elder and bitter but is fine and not forced which gives a relief accompanied with all lifesavers songs that saved the album from a awful disaster.

To Listen:All I Have Left Is You, Slim Pickens Does The Right Thing And Rides The Bomb To Hell,I Wanna Secret Family (With You)

Up To You : Cruising California (Bumpin’ In My Trunk),Oc Guns

Avoid: Days Go By,Turning Into You,Dividing By Zero

Monday, 2 July 2012

'Under The Westway' And 'The Puritan' - Blur

Rated: Like A Virgin 

Double of joy.The Band have two new massive tracks todelight  their fans and not fans.Both songs are incredible and stay true to bands style, nothing has change and they just improved to give the best. Both songs premier online on a live broadcast "via twitter" live streaming on band's official website.

'Under The Westway' is a melancholic tune, much in Damon Albarn style.A beautiful song that has a "lyrical link" with band's second album song 'For Tomorrow".The Epic music in the song is like a marching band with bells introducing it that easy hook up and has the same enormous potential as 'The Universal' & 'Tender'.An incredible comeback song for fans and a demonstration of quality for new ones and people who doesn't believe that there's no new good  music.

The second song the band introduced is 'The Puritan' which is more uplifting track with electronic beats. The song sounds like a proper Blur's b-side and quickly takes you back to the 1990's but more in the Pulp style. At first the song could not perceive as a amazing song but after a second listen it grows on you. A sing-along sort of anthem with crazy catchy synths but not cheesy and even it feels 'old' is very modern and poppy. Perhaps not their best but still incredible compared to charts music and is on the same electric genre.This song is more in Graham Coxon style and is fun and so entertaining.A great song to sing it live.

This pair of  songs is THE must have of the year (so far). A classic tune accompanied with a rejoice-able track both showing the versatility of the band and their very own signature. Songs gives a fresh air to the ears is like hearing something very familiar with beautiful memories but at the same time is very shiny and new. Simply a puff of great well done work and harmony created from a band that haven't lost their aim.