Trevor and The Joneses’ 2012 full length LP ‘There Was Lightning’ was a well-constructed celebration of retro rock. The Vegas band’s fuzzy guitar driven style pulled a bunch of great late 60s and 70s influences together and gave garage band fans a record that blended psych and rock with the best elements of The Stooges, Lou Reed and Neil Young’s Crazy Horse. What it lacked in originality it more than made up for with enthusiasm, and despite being the kind of record that took a while before it found an audience, it had a few very vocal fans. Not least of these was Chris Topham, owner of the independent UK record label Plane Groovy, who picked up the album for a vinyl release in 2014, long before vinyl sales rocketed and twelve inches of shiny black plastic became the hip medium of choice.
When Enuff Z’Nuff are at the top of their game, they’re a fantastic band. Their first three albums (‘Enuff Z’Nuff’, ‘Strength’ and ‘Animals With Human Intelligence’ rank among the best melodic rock and power pop discs ever. From that point on, you’ll find good songs scattered throughout their next half a dozen releases, but the cut and paste nature of these can be a little frustrating. From 1999’s ‘Paraphernalia’ onwards, the band seemed to settle into a pattern of bulking out “new” releases with bits and pieces from their extensive vaults. Their 2000 release ’10’ is a blatant example of this, having been pieced together from recordings made over the previous half a decade. Just one listen to ‘There Goes My Heart’ might even be enough to convince some listeners that the song had been kicking around even longer, such is its quality (being comparable to the best bits of the 1985 demos and the EZ’N debut album). Their 2004 release ‘?’ was even more scattershot, featuring new songs alongside a bunch of material dating back to the ‘Animals…’ sessions in 1992. Frankly, if the songs weren’t good enough in the 90s, they certainly felt like third division off cuts over a decade later.
For a band who claimed they were “All Done With Rock N Roll” as 2017 drew to a close, Watts continued to keep themselves busy. A digital single, ‘Queens’ followed in October 2018 and a new EP ‘Breaking Glass’ kicked off 2019 in their typically retro rock ‘n’ roll tradition.
It’s been a year since the world last heard from Boston’s underground heroes, but they’ve returned with a couple of new tracks that you can download on a “pay what you want” basis.
Ahead of their second album’s release, Norwegian indie/goth band Mayflower Madame are streaming their new single, ‘Vultures’.
Taking a pinch of Jesus & Mary Chain and a huge influence from Bauhaus and ‘First, Last & Always’ era Sisters of Mercy, the track really delivers in terms of mechanical rhythms, cold riffs and a brilliant alt-pop darkness. Everything has been recycled with so much love, it could even pass as authentic find from a vault of rare 80s alternative music.
Essex band Found Missing? released their debut EP in the summer of 2019. While the band were a relatively new arrival on the UK rock scene at that point, their members had been working the live circuit for some time as members of Cosmic Joker, Twelvepointhead and La Muerte.
La Muerte were fantastic. They left the world too prematurely with one EP that fused elements of punk, hardcore and a debt to early Killing Joke. If you’re approaching this band expecting more of the same you’re surely going to be disappointed, but what Found Missing? do, they often do very well. Opting for something very retro, the band takes a huge hard rock swagger, injects it with a love of funk and then dirties it up a little, ending up sounding like an early 90s funk metal band covering tracks from Bush’s US million seller ‘Sixteen Stone’. Obviously, at the time of release, it sounds rather…out of time, but for fans of that sort of thing, it very much fills a musical hole.