The Rising – “It’s Gonna Be Alright”

If you want something new, original, oh-so-clever and striving to be different, than The Rising are not the band for you.  Oh, no.  So if that is what you’re after, go and listen to some crappy, soulless indie band wearing skinny jeans and sporting painfully pale skin who won’t be around in 12 months time because we don’t want you here.

THE RISING

However if you want heart-on-the-sleeve, honest-to-goodness, life affirming rock n soul, than jump aboard, my friend.  The Rising’s first teaser from their forthcoming debut album is a belter.  Boasting a really authentic 60s Mod feel complete with swirling hammond and an astonishing girl group backing vocal, this is the kind of stuff that will stand the test of time and will win The Hardest Working Unsigned Band In Hampshire even more fans to add to an already impressive fanbase.  Now crack open a cold one and let The Rising be the soundtrack to the fast approaching weekend….

UNPLUG’S VERDICT – ACE!

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Avital Raz – “Blues Of The Ugly Sister”

If anyone would care to explain the genre “acid folk” to me, that would be great.  Thanks.  This is how the covering e-mail from Sotones categorised the tuneage of Avital Raz.   Well, I don’t care much for categories or genres but I do care what I think is great.  And “Blues Of The Ugly Sister” is very nearly great.

It’s sparse arrangement means that Raz’s enigmatic vocals and intriguing story telling skills are brought the fore.  She’s clearly a unique talent and probably a bit bonkers too, which makes it all the more interesting.  There’s a Western and Indian influence here which adds to the mystique.  My only criticism?  It slightly outstays its welcome.

But any song containing such a shock value line as “It’s me he really wants, because I’m a great fuck,” demands to sit up, be heard and be respected.

avital raz

 

Hear it for yourself…Avital Raz – “Blues of the Ugly Sister”

UNPLUG’S VERDICT? – ACE!

 

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Fight The Dice – “L.O.V.”

Nice guitar riff introduction….promising.  Throbbing bass and purposeful drums elbow their way in….OK, where’s this going?  I’m in danger of getting a bit excited here.  Here come the vocals….oh, shit!  It’s a poor man’s Nickelback.  And after all that?  A shame.  Next….

fight the dice

Hear it for yourself….Fight The Dice – “L.O.V.”

UNPLUG’S VERDICT? – DISGRACE!

 

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Calling All The Heroes – Chris Difford of Squeeze

Squeeze are one of my favourite bands ever.  One of the main reasons for this is the brilliant lyric writing of Chris Difford, and he recently took the time to answer a few quick questions for Unplug.  Which was really rather nice of him…

cd

  • Who or what made you realise you loved music?  I learnt to love music by watching David Bowie at a local college one night.  I thought ‘Wow! That’s a great job!  I want a job like that!’
  • What was the first gig you ever went to?  I saw The Who play live and stood back stage behind Keith Moon.  I was still at school and the electricity plugged me into the future.
  • What was the first album you bought with your own money?  “The Sound Of Music”.  ”High On The Hill” and all that…I still love it.
  • What is your favourite Beatles song and why?  “Fool On The Hill”, because it is one of the many that springs to mind and I love them all.   
    The Beatles – The Fool On The Hill

  • What were the last 5 songs you listened to on your iPod?  The Strypes mixes for a new album.  Check them out.

The Strypes – Got Love If You Want It (LIVE)

  • If the world could only hear one of your songs, which one would it be and why?  “Up The Junction”.  I’m proud of the lyric and the melody is perfect too.   

Squeeze – Up the Junction (TOTP)

  • Do you have any pre-gig rituals?  I sleep in the dressing room and pray for kindness.
  • What do you have planned for 2013?  Should we be excited?   I am working with a band called The Strypes.  They are young, gifted and blue….
  • What ambitions do you have left to fulfil?  To write a book and live a happy life.
  • In your opinion, who or what should be making Unplug The Jukebox’s ears smile in 2013?  All of the above, and my new album too…

Thank you Chris!  That Strypes track’s a bit special…..

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The Ordinary Boys – “Run This Town”

I bloody love The Ordinary Boys.  There!  I said it!  Following Preston‘s bizarre decision to appear on Celebrity Big Brother a few years back, it seemed that The Ordinary Boys went from a quite cool, gritty, Mod band to shiny, poppy Hello! magazine property at the drop of a hat.  One minute I was seeing Preston and his band supporting Paul Weller, the next he’s on my television screen, rubbing shoulders with Michael Barrymore and George Galloway as part of the nation’s favourite TV circus.  It was all a bit surreal.  We’re all entitled to a mistake or two though, aren’t we?

ordinary boys

Despite all that nonsense, “Over The Counter Culture” and “Brassbound” remain two cracking albums and even the post Big Brother effort “How To Get Everything…” had its moments.  Now there are rumblings of a new Ordinary Boys album being in the making and I, for one, find this quite exciting.  ”Run This Town” was first aired during the band’s “reunion/farewell/greatest hits/we need the money” tour at the end of 2011 and has just been made available for free download from the band’s Reverbnation page, so perhaps this is a taster of that new album?

To these ears, it ticks all the right boxes.  It maintains the spirit and the energy of “Over The Counter Culture” whilst lyrically it appeals to my love of romance and nostalgia in a song.  This makes me want to round up my oldest buddies, get on the sauce and tell them all how much I love them and how “we must do this more often”.  Which is only a good thing, right?  Until the morning after that is…

The Ordinary Boys – Run This Town

Hats off to Preston.  It’s nice to have him back.

UNPLUG’S VERDICT? – ACE!

 

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Galoshins – “Mink”

If you like your tuneage to be a raw, restless mix of insanity, thunderous drums, squealing organs and distorted guitars topped off with rabid vocals, look no further than the recently released EPs by Scottish nutters Galoshins.

Released on the same day, “EP 1″ edges it for me as it’s slightly more unhinged than “EP 2″ – clearly they’re a band that are happy to use their ideas on the songs themselves as opposed to titles for their EPs.  ”Mink” is one of the highlights although the manic “Fly On You” gives it a good run for its money.

galsoshins

Galoshins make me want to get utterly shitfaced and form a band.  Which sounds like great fun to me but pretty painful to anyone else.  Listen to this and prepare for your life to be made just a wee bit better…..

Hear it for yourself….Galoshins – “Mink”

UNPLUG’S VERDICT? – ACE!

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DoG HeaDed SpiRiTs – “Time”

Is this a joke?  Seriously?  Super slick, super sickly, utterly lifeless, utterly pointless.  This is music for people who don’t like music.  This is music for people who get an iTunes voucher for Christmas and think “oh, I know, I’ll get the new Coldplay album…” and when they do get it, they only play the hits off of it anyway.  And what’s with the stupid capital letter randomness in the band name?

A tip for DoG HeaDed SpiRiTs – stop focussing on stupid ways to make your band name more interesting and write some decent tunes that sit up and DEMAND to be heard instead of this background-music-for-dinner-party dross.  Abysmal.

dogheadedspirits

Hear it for yourself…  DoG HeaDed SpiRiTs – “Time”

UNPLUG’S VERDICT? – DISGRACE!

 

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