“Bob the Builder, with a Detol-soaked throat..”
Joey Eyebank's latest reviews and ramblings about some new releases

Jim Lockey/ Oxygen Thief/ Ben Marwood- Exclamation At Asterisk Hash

This collection of songs from three “different” acoustic singer/songwriters who met each other at a poorly-attended Cambridge gig last August features three tracks from each musician. Overall it’s a selection of Frank Turner esq. thrashy acoustic folk/rock songs.That’s the only comparison you can make when songs make you feel nothing except boredom, ‘Oxygen Thief’ uses interesting guitar techniques to create brash raw hard-hitting songs but has a voice like Bob the Builder with a Detol-soaked throat, which however in comparison to Ben Marwood and Jim Lockey sounds on a different level altogether.Exclamation At Asterisk Hash is a dry and drab selection of acoustic guitar based music which isn’t terrible, just morbidly dull. 3/10


The Rumble Strips- Welcome to the Walk Alone

Lead single “Not The Only Person” is a humorous anthem with a soulful edge, and the stadium sized drums flourish with sweeping wizardry. As a single it not only stands as a reflection of the knife crime-London-alleyway small part of society with a charming question directed at the “misunderstood” youths, but it is twinned with a 1940’s wartime melody sound that makes it so unique. It is however; the perfection of this song, that makes the rest of “Welcome To The Walk Alone” merge together into a mellow linear-mess.

Another minus to the album is the “Dreaded Ronsons”; “toy-box” jazz production which, just as with every fucking thing he does, spits trumpet phlegm in random parts of the songs, then ruining it (like he did with his awful cover Radioheads “Just“). If a band employs Mark Ronson for the production they should expect to be rammed into a quirky “High-street chic meets New York Jazz-turned fashionable (and less poverty ridden)” cage, forcing them into the fact that they have the same chance in getting bad publicity from both music magazines and the tabloids.

Although the Rumble Strips have taken a fuller-orchestra based sound there are still some of your typical staccato-bar chord led straight-edge pop- to curl the locks of your average indie-boho- which to the ears of any normal listener will fall frail with malnutrition.

The witty “Sweet Heart Hooligan” voices itself like a Phil Spector production of Charlie Chaplin fronting a Stephen “Skip” Spencer tribute band but whirlpools into the vacuous musical-frame that most of the songs on this album stay boxed into.

The Rumble Strips have produced an album with a few stand-out tracks, but not much else.


Sonic Youth- The Eternal

What must be Sonic Youths’ twentieth album sails along with the familiar slack-jaw bemusement that Sonic Youth emulate so perfectly with their smooth yet discordant grunge.

The songs “Leaky Lifeboat” and “What We Know” would fit perfectly on the soundtrack to an early 90’s “Richard Linklater” film and the 9-minute “Massage the History” is an calm nosedive into insanity with the vocals massaging the song in a drifty haze.

The Eternal is no epic. But it just shows Sonic Youth still have that breezy-cool aura that’s graced their albums over the past few decades- and they're still the masters of it.



Elliot Minor- Solaris

The classically trained pop-punk toffs have produced a song more like the candy-dressed equivalent of a Coldplay number as opposed to the operatic-tinged “cute” melodies that scolded our ears with a corporate branding iron on their debut.

With this new musical direction Elliot Minor have traded the harmonies and guitar solos (the only attributes that distinguished them from the usual bollocks) for a straight structured shallow Pop song that could’ve been ripped off McFly.

Everything about the song is formulaic and deathly.



La Roux- La Roux

A small percentage of Pop music, it seems, has taken a turn.

This is still manufactured cadence draped, hook-laden sugar-sprinkled temporary music for the easily influenced.

But there is an underlying difference, in that; the songs are embellished with interesting synth-leads and melodies, that in the days of “SClub 7” would have been deemed alternative and very diverse to the common perception of “chart trash”. And not only that but the lyrics are, well, bearable.

La Rouxs’ debut is an easy listen which doesn’t provide much feeling or passion, but a good set of danceable catchy-tunes.

It is the musical equivalent of Warhol ideologies, like with most pop-music, but young Elly Jackson also has a voice like no-other; a shaky falsetto yell with a lispy delivery.

It is also the substantial song writing element that she teams with catchy pop-music which makes her so diverse to the usual “in-crowd”.


Pet Shop Boys- Did You See Me Coming?

Indeed Pet Shop Boys, I did see this coming.

After exhausting the back-catalogue due to the Brit-awards all the 10’s of millions of fans were wanting some more tongue-in-cheek uberly-camp disco tunes, posing questions with an aura as smooth as craven dale.

And yes, here it is.

And no, they will never stop.

For it is the wonderful irony; that their superficial music can outstand any other superficiality in the music biz, and that’s what keeps people fixated.

www.petshopboys.com ??

Killa Kela- Built Like An Amplifier

Beat boxing champion Killa Kela has discarded the originality of minimalist beat boxing for layers of industrial trash compacted into a pulse-heavy, agitating rhythmically-based pop song.
Built Like An Amplifier is an overly textured affair that reeks of bleach.


InME- Herald Moth

Inme are one of those bands who will continue to produce albums that never get enough recognition. Albums that sore way above other metal bands but lie below in the media.

With the blistering and epic “Daydream Anonymous” Inme crafted a new sound reminiscent of bands such as Sikth and Opeth, “Herald Moth” takes this sound into more progressive territory while also making it poppier.

Unlike “Daydream Anonymous”, “Herald Moth” is a match of extreme highs and extreme lows; while the musicality is amazing- guitar riffs erupting into scatters of musical confetti, some of the songs’ lyrics and “hooks” seem abit too sweet to digest.

When interviewing Inme a number of times, frontman Dave Mcpherson has always commented on how he channels the hardships he’s been through over the past few years into his music, and with most of ‘Herald Moth’ this is evident in the darker more epic sounds to the songs; which flourish with a grand earthy gritty tone matched with brooding sounds but there are also a few songs which rather go limp in their posture.

The songs “Nova Armada” and “Belief Revival” are 4 minutes of hypnotic, hulky metallic wonder; teaming lightning shots of riffs with harmonious choruses and big breakdowns into solo hysteria, this however contrasts with songs like “Captain Killjoy” and “Single Of The Weak” which traverse into “emo-core” and border on into soppy sulk-pop- a mistake Inme made with “White Butterfly”.

The slower “I Will Honour You” lacks the ethereal ballad style that the slow songs “Turbulence” and “Thanks For Leaving Me” had and rather sounds a bit too tender and typical.

Inme are a different band altogether to how they were perceived in the “Overgrown Eden” days, and it shows.

Dan Black- ((Un))

Dan Black would fit well as a character in an episode of “Nathan Barley”.

He would prance along with floppy neon hair extensions wearing a birthing blanket with a clashing array of cute cartoon images, geometric patterns and sickly colours on it and would scurry into clubs holding a tape deck with a short digital-art film playing on a screen behind him; while muttering bollocks into a mic to some jittering drum-samples and keyboard melody- while a dance-floor of Art-boffs pull shapes with bold pretentious statements on their t-shirts.
-So to the large percentage of people who don’t watch ‘Nathan Barley’, he’s your usual hip- nu-rave fodder.

Most of ((Un)) is excruciatingly average minimalist electro. Taking no twists or turns but rather casually drifting down a Usb drive into the database for the mentally bland. Supposed “Love” song ’U+Me=’ squeals with empty passion and ’Mika’ esq. vocal “trills”. Every other song on ((Un)) subsides into grey melody, occasionally borrowing beats and samples from other songs- The first track (and second single) “Symphonies” uses the drum beat from Rhiannas “Umbrella”.
A meek and subtly abysmal debut.

The DevilRock Four- First In Line