The Answer - Keep Believin' (EP Release/ALBERT)
Reviewed By Steve Rudd
When a band like The Darkness requests that your band open for them at the Brixton Academy,
then you surely know that you are onto a very good thing indeed.
This is what happened to this truly awesome band in The Answer, who are busting out of
Downpatrick in Ireland with a metaphorical fistful of dynamite and an aching ambition to be the best.
The Darkness first saw - and were understandably impressed by - these four long haired
lads at a show in Ireland, yet The Answer only recently made their debut festival
appearance in England at the Download weekend in June.
Perhaps one of the reasons that The Darkness were so impressed by The Answer is because
in front man Cormac Neeson there is more than a bit of Justin Hawkins.
Cormac's violently versatile voice is astounding, overwhelming - simply extraordinary.
Hitting the high notes like a young man possessed, Cormac is one of the most exciting singers
around right now, dominating both the stage and the band's hard-rocking sound with a
soulful and sensual voice that could bring Robert Plant and Paul Rogers both to their knees in tribute.
This EP is a fantastic four-track affair, with Keep Believin' an incredible cut that would sit
nicely at the top of the charts if justice prevailed.
No Questions Asked rampages with a
similar burning desire, before Be What You Want (which is arguably the greatest song here)
opens with a swift acoustic guitar melody before the electric guitars and drums kick in, and
The Answer's dynamic sound hits out in its own unique and thoroughly beastly manner.
The Answer aren't a metal band. They play stupendously catchy hard rock, and make the most
of an incredible presence.
Their sublime swagger ensures that So Cold is yet another brilliant track that has
to be heard at all costs.
Indeed, every song on this EP is an out-and-out anthem - and everyone's a winner.
Cormac's rousing lead vocals complement the band's harmonious backing vocals, with
the guitarist in Paul Mahon reeling out angular riffs as though he was born to be wild.
Paul was the man who first rallied the troops, even going so far as to tempt Cormac
back across to Ireland from New York, where he was living at the time that Paul was
trying to put the band together.
Micky Waters is the bass-man, while James Heatley
has the freedom to hit on his drum-kit as much as he wants to without any fear of rejection.
James, incidentally, was once Ash's stand-in sticksman back in 1993.
Regardless of the question, The Answer are The Answer are The Answer, yes it's true.
On the strength of this staggering release alone, they are certainly one of the most
exhilarating bands around right now.
One of the most magnificently original and shamelessly eccentric demos that I've heard in absolutely ages, these three tracks from this refreshing Brighton band might just blow you away for good.
The type of music herein is almost impossible to categorise, as the delightfully contemporary Prog-Rock
Sunburn hurls itself at you in a most explosively
Album Reviews - The Apostacy - Demo By Steve Rudd
What to expect from a band that opens up a demo with a song entitled Asparagus?
Well, this slick rock-loving trio are no way as boring as asparagus, with such a tune in
fact having roots in blazing Funk-Metal folds, as front man Shaun Garner sings and plays
guitar as though System Of A Down are his favourite God-damned rock band since time began.
Album Reviews - Edwina Hayes - Out On My Own (Radar) By Steve Rudd
I came to know and love the music of Edwina Hayes, who was born in Dublin, via something of a simple twist of fate.
I was reading my local paper - The Driffield Times - and there was an article in there mentioning Edwina's music.
Strange, I thought - I've heard of Edwina and have previously read good things about her and her music,
Music News - Mr Beasley - Radio 1 Tip Hull Band's Debut Single! By Matt Hill
With Radio 1's One World show playing their debut white label single, this month
Neon charts in DJ Magazine's top 40.
So who are Mr Beasley and what's this new music they're making?
After a few years of jamming, Bobby, Matt and Will met singer Sarah a year or so ago,
and started to get some concrete ideas together.
For the recent live gigs James has joined the line up on guitar
Album Reviews - Marissa Nadler - The Saga Of Mayflower May (Beautiful Happiness) By Steve Rudd
This album certainly won't be to all tastes, and it's very unlikely that we'll hear any of Marissa's
music in the charts anytime soon. Still, that is no reflection whatsoever on the quality or the
originality of the music. It's simply that Marissa's music unfortunately isn't the
type to really permeate into the mainstream, with one of the primary reasons being
Music, Album Reviews - A Certain Type of Person - The Great Bishop Robbery EP II By Michelle Dee
I didn't go out today; instead I reached for the attractively packaged seven- track EP from Sheffield band
A Certain Type of Person. They are a folk tinged five-piece with an eye for detail and unusual instrumentation including organs and vibraphones. At times the gentle acoustic sound is reminiscent of our own folk advocates Cowfish albeit with a more gravel laden Levellers style lead vocal.
Album Reviews - Foreign Sun Demo By Steve Rudd
I first came to know of this Hull-based band back in 2000 when I was lucky enough to catch
one of their gigs at the Hull Adelphi venue. Back then, I was stunned.
Here and now, I'm gob smacked.
Pretty soon after I saw the band, Foreign Sun seemed to disappear, but
between then and now the band front man Rich Goldspink has been knuckling
Album Reviews - Love As Laughter - Laughter's Fifth (Sub-Pop) By Steve Rudd
This Alternative American rock band is the brainchild of Sam Jayne, who has been releasing LAL-affiliated work since 1996, with this astonishingly brilliant 11-track LP being the band's fifth album.
Laughter's Fifth was recorded in Sam's friend's basement over the course of
five months in Delaware (that area in the USA that Wayne and Garth blatantly
Album Reviews - Steve Reed - I Have To Go By Nick Quantrill
I Have To Go is the debut full-length release from Hull based singer-songwriter,
Steve Reed. His debut release, And So On And So Forth was a promising, yet
ultimately one-dimensional record that nevertheless showcased the potential
of his considered approach to guitar pop.
This new release sees significant steps
Album Reviews - David Wrench - The Atomic World of Tomorrow By Steve Rudd
This ten-song-strong masterpiece of an LP is in a league of its own, as this
David Wrench character proves to be something of an Alt-Pop-loving genius in his own right.
Boldly opening with World War 4, this upbeat tune is literally out of this
world and heaving with the chorus-based pop elements of Erasure and Duran Duran
in their musical prime.
Album Reviews - Emma Rugg - Oceans / Depart EP By Steve Rudd
Since Hull singer-songwriter Emma released her fabulous debut album
Isolated Impression, her song writing style has changed somewhat,
with this five-track EP being the perfect showcase for two brand new
songs (in Oceans and Depart), along with appearances from her older
tunes When I Looked At You and Prelude To The EndRead more...
Singles Reviews - Chart Review 18th July 2005 with DJ Chris Plant
Sorry I haven't done any chart reviews in a while. I've been busy with my American girlfriend.
Well, we have a new Number One single this week.
Just for a change it isn't a new release that has been hyped to the hills or a record bought
in bulk by a small hardcore of fans that will struggle to appeal to a wider
Single Reviews - Morning Runner - Gone Up In Flames (Parlophone) By Steve Rudd
Morning Runner are fast-becoming one of the nation's most exciting rock bands, and here
they follow-up their fabulous Drawing Shapes EP with yet another masterpiece of a
tune that is in truth an epic anthem.
Their second single Gone Up In Flames is an upbeat and fast-paced pop-rock cut
of staggering and mesmerising proportions, and their sublime and emotion-toiling
sound might remind some folk of Terris.