Screeching Weasel legend to join The Radio Buzzkills at one-off gig


twenty-sevens-logoIn the 80s and 90s, many punk pop bands took their cue from Ramones and set about creating similarly fast paced tunes with simple and catchy hooks. In the twenty first century, there are still hundreds of bands plying their craft and playing what many have now dubbed Ramonescore. As the years pass, however, it’s just as likely that these bands were just as influenced by The Mr. T Experience, The Queers and Screeching Weasel. One such band, Missouri’s Radio Buzzkills, released their ‘The Quick and The Cheap’ via Braindead Records in the spring of 2016, but heading into 2017 – and celebrating their fifteenth anniversary – they are about to hit a career high.

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needy-sons-lpOriginally a live project where friends played cover tunes and numbers from their respective catalogues as a way of letting off steam, The Needy Sons is a Boston supergroup of sorts. Mike Gent has recorded several albums with power pop/rock outfit The Figgs, Ed Valuskas has associations with Gravel Pit and the legendary Bill Janovitz has recorded various solo albums as well as being a member of Buffalo Tom (whose ‘Big Red Letter Day’ is one of the finest albums in the history of recorded music). Augmented by Eric Anderson and with their debut album ‘Vis a Vis’ mixed in part by Mike Viola’s matey Ducky Carlisle, you could say this band got off to a good start.

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THE FOREIGN RESORT – The American Dream EP

foreign-resort-epWelcome to our faceless lives” implores The Foreign Resort’s frontman Mikkel Jacobsen during ‘Suburban Depression’, a neo-gothic, downbeat look at the dark side of the modern world. Set to music conjured through a remoulded sonic image of the 80s and released as a standalone track via the Danish band’s Soundcloud account, this is both the perfect introduction to The Foreign Resort for unfamiliar ears and an equally perfect homage to the sounds of some thirty years previous. The recycled sounds of a Peter Hook-esque bassline placed against the measured rhythmic pacing of The Cure’s classic ‘A Forest’ forge ahead, as the tale of “your own private hell” unfolds. With the repeated refrain and suggestion that “everybody’s empty now” being bandied around with sheer abandon, some may experience knee-jerk feelings that the track itself is depressing, but nothing could be farther from the truth. There’s a sense of knowing within this band’s gothic throwback of a sound. As the track builds, never ever shifting from the basic rhythm – pulsing, pulsing – and the guitars increase, the bass holds firm and despite the familiarity, The Foreign Resort strike musical gold.

It’s not a fluke, either.

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New video from Lasers Lasers Birmingham

In July 2016, Lasers Lasers Birmingham released a four track EP exploring different elements of country music.  While the Band-esque ‘Shedd Aquarium’ was undoubtedly the highlight, each number showed Lasers’ head honcho Alex Owen to be a man with a well-rounded talent.

The title cut, ‘Royal Blue’ now has an official video, which you can watch in full below.

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DAN OWEN – Hands And Enemies EP

dan-owen-epShrewsbury’s Dan Owen isn’t an artist who can’t by stylistically pigeonholed beyond being called a singer-songwriter. Judging by his 2016 EP ‘Open Hands and Enemies’, he principally uses the piano and acoustic guitar to write material (like so many), but on occasion, also seems happy to enlist many other hands to turn what could have been basic arrangements much bigger adult pop affairs. The four songs featured here range from the downbeat and folky to including big and bolshy strains of electronic beats and bass.

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