Killing The Summer…
Fi Beckett reviews some sounds too cool for summer…

Element vs Ben VP - Name and Number (Megafan Records)

I really wanted to say something nice and constructive in my first review, just to set the tone,but as it's a reworking of Curiosity Killed the Cat's single I just can't do it. I fuckin HATED em!! I know I'm showing my age here, but anyone who lived through the musical void that was the mid-eighties will know what I'm talking about. They looked like a bunch of Cornish fishermen, about 200 miles adrift,singing about absolutely nothing and led by Ben Volpeliere-Pierrot dancing his horrible, gangly dance like your pissed uncle at a wedding. And, as remixes go, it's not even that good, just plods along with Ben sounding as smug as ever. Avoid it like the clap.

Devil in Miss Jones - Smile/Turn off the Radio (Waks Records)

See, this is more like it! ...Miss Jones are a heady mix of rock, rap and ranting, sounding like Ian Dury and Mike Skinner having a punch up in the Gents while Towers of London are backcombing their hair in the mirror. Only with more swearing. Which is nice, as I've been told that I swear too much
('shitmouth' being one of the kinder comments), so to be able to set my profanities to music makes it far more socially acceptable and means that I
may be invited out more, so they get my vote right there!

'Turn off the Radio' is, as you would expect, an attack on the predicability of the music industry, which is always a winner. 'Smile' sounds all Parklifey with it's wry observations of the minutiae of life, ending with the killer line 'for fuck's sake - smile!'. Support slots with the likes of Babyshambles (yes, Pete actually turned up!), The Rakes and Art Brut have secured them a loyal fan base and if this single is an indication of things to come, then this should be a very exciting year for them.

The Singleman Affair - Let's Kill the Summer (Poptones Records)

I felt quite encouraged by this album's title, as I am one of that rare breed who actually dislikes being hot and tanned (this is what comes of
being a one-time goth) and was hoping for some bleak, wintry soundscapes to cool me down. But no such luck as the first track sounds exactly like the intro to Kula Shaker's 'Tattva', thus evoking images of somewhere even hotter than here! the rest of the songs continue in much the same vein, all dreamy and hippyfied with the singer sounding like Donovan going to San Fransisco via Delhi. Really inoffensive, which would usually mean that I should find it offensive because of that, but it's actually quite soothing and making me feel like I should have flowers in my hair, a Greenpeace tattoo and a bong. Peace out.

Circlesound - Feel the Energy EP (Reverb Music)

Here we have a four-piece from Chester, relocated to Manchester where they're busy making a big noise and receiving lots of critical acclaim (and
we all know how important that is...) apparently. two of them met whilst on a raft, dressed as spacemen and throwing cowshit at each other. now, if that's not rock n roll I dunno what is! Their sound has been likened to 'Johnny Marr's infectiously jangling guitar', it says here, don't see it myself as they sound too 'rock' for that, but I can hear loads of other bands' influences in there; The Cult being the main one, if I close my eyes I can imagine Ian Astbury belting any of these tracks out in his foghorn voice. They also remind me a bit of My New Favourite Band, Johnny Panic, musically speaking, with the singersounding like the lovely Rob Solly on the final track, but lyrically they don't even come close I'm afraid.

They say that nobody has quite pinned down their sound yet and I think that's because they themselves don't know what sound they're going for. On one track the singer starts to sound like Chris Martin/that bloke from Maroon 5 (yawn), then on another they veer alarmingly into Fallout Boy territory. So who knows? Someone said that they will 'bring hope to the masses', dunno about that but they have certainly brightened up my night, though mainly they've made me want to replace them with Johnny Panic to remind myself how it should be done...

The Fallout Trust - When We Are Gone (At Large Recordings)

Naturally, I'm immediately suspicious of anything with 'fallout' in it's name as it has connotations of Bad Things - nuclear fallout/fallout
boy/falloutofbed etc; and my suspicions are proved very much correct with this steaming pile. I'm convinced I must've been sent the wrong thing
because exciting phrases like 'Razorlight used to be this much fun', '...super furrys hook-laden anthems' and 'Television guitars bolted onto a
not-crap strain of Britpop' are used to describe this band.

Wrong, wrong, wrong! The Fallout Trust manage to combine air raid sirens, whistles, violins and what sounds like the pips from the speaking clock with a droning, synthesized 'oh,oh,oh'. And that's it. I can listen to the Super Furrys 'til the cows come home but I couldn't bear to hear another 30
seconds of this.

Do your stereo a favour and put on The Resistance instead, your ears will thank you for it.

Fi Beckett

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