Richard Ashcroft - Keys To The World (Parlophone)
By Steve Rudd
Thank God for the songwriting talents of Richard Ashcroft.
He is now some six years into his solo career since the nation's favourite band from
Wigan - The Verve, that is - split.
Luckily, the material that Richard has released as a solo artist has consistently
been just as enticing, and this latest 10-track album of his will have surely to
goodness attracted plenty more fans to his music.
This album kicks off with one of the coolest and catchiest tunes therein with Why Not Nothing?,
an upbeat anthem to get hugely excited about.
The chart-smashing single release in
Break The Night With Colour is another highlight, but not before the
acoustic-rooted and funkily chilled-out vibes of Music Is Power makes its stylish mark.
Richard obviously sings his way through every single song while playing
guitar and keyboards, yet he has an excellent 'backing band' in tow to help out as
and when, with ace guitarist Terry Britten just one of the talented band members.
Lush string arrangements back many of the songs, and this gives an epic feel to
proceedings, with this album being a mixture of upbeat anthems and slower, more
melancholic cuts such as the tantalisingly tender Words Just Get In The Way, a
reflective song that harbours the lyric Fear is coming fast; you think your time is past.
Cry Til The Morning is another beautiful tune, proving that even the subtlest
keyboard melodies can be thoroughly enchanting, against Richard's sensually soul-fuelled vocals.
Right up until the majestic closing tune in World Keeps Turning, Richard keeps the
listener entertained in a way that few singer-songwriters can in this day and age.
Singing from the heart, he connects with the listener in a most bewitching fashion,
making Keys To The World a little masterpiece of an album in the process.
Thus, there's little wonder why he's held in such high regard by the music establishment at large.
Album Reviews, Music Videos - Torso Horse - Every Dog Has Its Day Reviewed By Steve Rudd
Calling all Torso Horse fans! Your favourite Goth-Metal maestros have recently
reworked their classic Every Dog Has Its Day anthem, and shot a brand new promo video
to boot, which - in a word - is stunning.
The original version of this track was fantastic as it stood, but Adam and band have felt
compelled to rework it a little, and have even added a short-but-sweet keyboard
Album Reviews - Faith No More - The Platinum Collection (Warner) Reviewed By Steve Rudd
A never-to-be-forgotten rock band for so many reasons, Faith No More hailed from
California, and for fifteen years they produced some amazing rock music, a fact
that is proven by this awesome collection of some of their best material.
With fifteen of their own classic tunes being included, along with a live
version of their old classic We Care A Lot, and their infamous cover
Music News - Shine On at Hull City Hall By Alex Firth
I'm currently studying at Northumbria University in Newcastle though I
shall be back home in Beverley on the 29th April. Why, you ask?
I have a concert to go to at Hull City Hall ...
Last year, I couldn't believe all the fuss that was being made about a local
(to Newcastle) band doing their first show at the most famous venue in town -
the City Hall.
The band was called Shine On, and was a tribute
Single Reviews - The Waking Eyes - But I Already Have It (Coalition)
Release date: March 20th 2006. Reviewed By Steve Rudd
Probably the finest rock 'n' roll band to have busted out of Winnipeg, Canada, in
recent years, the four guys that comprise The Waking Eyes clearly sound to have
been born for this type of life in the limelight.
This is the quartet's eagerly-awaited second single, and the follow-up to
their awesome Watch Your Money debut.
But I Already Have It comes packed
Album Reviews - Rising Sun - Dirty Daisy EP Reviewed By Steve Rudd
An indie-gilded rock 'n' roll quartet with a difference, Rising Sun here present
eight extraordinary tracks that prove to be sound testament to the band members' collective talents.
The title track in Dirty Daisy is up first and is bolstered by guitarist Dan's
heavyweight and swaggering riff. Nathan's raw, soul-inflamed vocals work a treat,
while the music is both
Album Reviews - The Soledad Brothers - The Hardest Walk (Polydor) Release Date: March 6th 2006. Reviewed By Steve Rudd
Potentially the perfect support band for any future Rolling Stones tour,
these three lads that make up The Soledad Brothers are such a talented
trio that they seem to be leaving most Blues-based rock 'n' roll bands
in their wake right now, especially on the back of this astonishing
twelve-track album that runs for almost an hour.
Opening cut Truth Or Consequences is a riff-raring
Single Reviews - Yellowcard - Lights and Sounds (Parlophone) Release date: March 6th 2006. Reviewed By Steve Rudd
They're back! And they're sounding better than ever!
These punk-loving Emo-rockers return with a new single and a new album (both entitled
Lights And Sounds), ready and willing to follow-up the astounding success that was
the band's globally popular Ocean Avenue album that has sold well in excess of two
million copies worldwide.
The lads have been
Single Reviews - The Marshals - Make Her Cry (Vertigo) Release date: March 6th 2006. Reviewed By Steve Rudd
What's in the stars is never meant to be, so croons Marshals band-leader Michael John.
That might be the case, just like this song might literally MakeHerCry -
whoever she might be,
for this is an extraordinarily moving tune that is proving to be a wise choice for the band's
debut single release, given the widespread acclaim that it's receiving.
The Marshals is an Irish trio,
Album Reviews - B-Movie - The Platinum Collection (Warner) Reviewed By Steve Rudd
Cast your hazy minds back to the glory days of the Eighties, and the Synth-Pop Brit bands
that were scaling the charts, and does the band name B-Movie ring any bells?
It might do for a few people, but this band isn't as much of a household name as it
deserves to be, given the quality of the music.
This 15-track retrospective is comprised of ten of the band's best tunes
Album Reviews - Dialog - Feel EP (Deuce Management) Reviewed By Steve Rudd
This band is interesting from the off, with all four of its members hailing from a different
Frontman Plamen is from Spain, and is clearly a terrifically talented singer,
while lead guitarist Adam Petty is English through and through.
Dialog ply a rare brand of rock music. The strong and catchy riffs do hark back to
that Classic Rock era of the
Album Reviews - Teddy Geiger Stepladder EP By Jimmy Reed
Teddy Geiger has a voice, a look and a song writing style which will appeal
to a wide spectrum of listeners; which is always a good start.
A very simple formula employed on 6 track EP Step Ladder - the production is very
understated, which is good to hear, and Teddy combines the elements of dusty vocal,
acoustic guitar and at times, strings and a
Music, Columns - Andy Tullock's Music Column January 2006
Hey, hey! Welcome to the first of my monthly columns, running you through the crazy, crazy world that is the modern music scene. Every month I will be going over the previous month's key events, as I see them (i.e. my get-out clause in case I forget some painstakingly obvious stuff, which, in time, will become painstakingly obvious that I do).
Alright, so first
Single Reviews - Your Vegas - Flybuzz By David Thurlby
Now don't get me wrong, I'm not accusing decadent Leeds based quintet
Your Vegas of having ideas above their station, but Flybuzz has
the air of a song which was composed, arranged and recorded purely for the Rock Stadium.
From the opening tinkles of the piano, which would be used to portray glacial rain
in a music class devoted to sound association
Album Reviews - Vib Gyor Five track EP By Michelle Dee
The chiming keyboards and guitars opens Fallen followed by a soft breathy
vocal then, as the song continues it takes on a definite Bono sound.
As the guitar quickens, you find yourself exploring a fresh wind swept arena.
Quiet, quick passionate wavy lines of guitar underpinned with urgent drumbeats,
floating falling into deep wells of white noise.
Plaintive pianos will oft be
Album Reviews - The LVRs - Death Has Become Her (Undergroove) Release date: March 13th 2006
Reviewed By Steve Rudd
This dazzling spoken-word album is a side project for two of the members of
LA rockers My Ruin, with the singer in Tairrie B doing the talking and musician
Mick Murphy providing the background noise, mainly in the form of
atmospheric soundscapes that are genuinely dark and deadly.
Listeners of a nervous disposition might want to give this a miss, especially
Single Reviews - The Somatics - Elemental (Engine Room) Release date: 27th February 2006. Reviewed By Steve Rudd
After the sad demise of cult heroes Ultrasound, ace guitarist Richard Green wasted
no time in forming the Leeds-based trio The Somatics.
Thus, we have Richard on lead vocals and guitar, backed up by bassist Stephanie
and drummer Bruce.
This single was also recorded and produced by Richard, to further prove just
how talented he is both in front of and
Album Reviews - Yeah, It's Supposed To Sound Like That Vol 2 (17 Track Compilation Album - Colchester Recordings) Reviewed By Steve Rudd
The second compilation release on the label that's run by the singing and
songwriting force behind the ace band The Party, James Sherry has once
again collated seventeen hugely exciting and varied tracks from some of
the best underground and unsigned bands/ artists not only from around the
UK, but from around the world.
Having said that, most of the tracks