For a young band Blitz Kids sound mature beyond their years with latest mini-album ‘Never Die’. Opening track ‘You’re Dead To Me’ shows great intent to carve their own space in the new wave of British rock acts taking the world by storm. And with emotional vocals and uplifting guitar tone during ‘Strangers With Memories’ an overall feel of anthemic rock slots Blitz Kids neatly alongside their peers We Are The Ocean, Lostprophets and Deaf Havana.
The band recorded the 6 track album at Stakeout Studios with Jason Wilcock which appears to be an intelligent choice as the slick production refines the sound to a polished finished product. With stand out track ‘Never Die’ available for a FREE download from the band’s website and with an extensive UK tour coming up (including a support slot with the awesome Mallory Knox) it’s worth checking out Blitz Kids now as they prepare to fully make their make in 2013.
WE ARE THE OCEAN
19th September 2012
Giants have been gigging for sometime and have firmly established themselves as a band to be watched with their latest effort, the mini-album, ‘These Are The Days‘. The Essex band storm the stage with Ed Parker, their highly energetic front man, leading the charge. The riffs are fast and heavy, the bass shakes your teeth, and this mash up of skate punk and hardcore blast your brains out of your ears (but in a good way, if you can imagine that?). You can see that hardly anyone in this room had heard of them before tonight, but one thing is for sure, they won the crowd over completely by the time they left the stage. They are definitely ones to keep an eye on.
Then it’s time for the headline act to take to the stage. We Are The Ocean have lost a vocalist since I last saw them, and I’m not quite sure what to expect from the live performance. The band start with ‘Machine’, a solid new track, and the crowd loves it. However, the set comprises the old for the new, and although the bands new screamless line-up is as polished and as slick as Simon Cowells hair, yet there is definitely something missing…
The real problem lies in the fact that the new material is lacking edgey excitement and anxiety. You wait for the songs to reach their heights and then burst through a barrier and stand balls out in front of you, but they don’t. Now that’s not to say the performance is bad, in fact the band are great, it’s the simple fact that they’re not We Are The Ocean anymore. They’ll be people wanting to guillotine me for saying this, but if it was another band you couldn’t complain about the evening. It’s when they stand they’re old material up against their new that you see a sort of sleek and polished decline, and the fact they’re missing that raw, rasping voice in certain parts to push the songs into the stratosphere is noticed.
Like I said, if this was any other band and you’d have had me singing praises. I just have such fond memories of other live shows of theirs that this one was more of a damp squib. Regardless the new line-up works as a polished unit, its just not We Are The Ocean of old.
WE ARE THE OCEAN
Maybe Today, Maybe Tomorrow
With ‘Maybe Today, Maybe Tomorrow’ being the first album to come from British band We Are The Ocean since the slightly controversial departure of unclean vocalist Dan Brown, full attention will be paid to every move the band make on this one by fans and critics alike.
The first – and maybe most obvious thing – to say is that if you’re expecting more Alexisonfire inspired post-hardcore like their earlier releases ‘Cutting Our Teeth’ and ‘Look Alive’ you will be disappointed. Its clear that after Dan’s departure the band have sharpened up their image and gone for a more refined, mainstream sound with Liam Cromby stepping in to the lime light. Interestingly it’s similar process to what once tour partners Deaf Havana went through; who previously were a southern-hardcore inspired quintet lead by aggressive vocalist Ryan Mellor, now a straight-forward (but still bloody good) rock quartet with guitarist/clean-vocalist James Veck-Gilodi at the helm.
Its no surprise that Zane Lowe picked single ‘Bleed’ as his ‘Hottest Record In The World’ as it jumps straight out as the real star of the album. Other highlights include anthemic title-track ‘Maybe Today, Maybe Tomorrow’, sensitive opener ‘Stanford Rivers’ and ‘Pass Me By’ which has an almost Frank Turner-esque vibe to it.
Despite the album being solid, it may turn off some of their older fan base. With their newfound maturity, We Are The Ocean have lost a bit of charm; the gritty spark that saw them leap out of their local scene to dominate the underground market. The band won’t be too disheartened though as ‘Maybe Today, Maybe Tomorrow’ will sit comfortably on Radio 1’s playlist and HMV’s shelves, instantly appeal to fans of You Me At Six, Kids In Glass Houses, Lostprophets and (new) Deaf Havana. ‘Maybe Today, Maybe Tomorrow‘ is an focused and accessible album showcasing whats hot in British rock music right now. Its sure to be a hit and will see the We Are The Ocean boys go far.
After a triumphant Reading & Leeds last weekend, the outdoor festival season has pretty much drawn to a close, but fear not, there are plenty of gigs coming up to get your teeth into for those still hungry for more gnarly music. Below is a list of shows that Crossfire recommends over September 2012.
B.DOLAN’s “The Church of Love & Ruin”
1st – MILTON KEYNES, UK – Crauford Arms (B. DOLAN ONLY, EXTENDED SOLO SET), 2nd – BRISTOL, The Croft (B. DOLAN ONLY, EXTENDED SOLO SET), 3rd – LONDON The Jazz Cafe, 4th – LIVERPOOL Kazimier, 5th – BIRMINGHAM HMV Institute, 6th – READING SUB89 (ft. headlining set from SAGE FRANCIS), 7th – BRIGHTON Coalition (ft. headlining set from SAGE FRANCIS)
Rapper B.Dolan presents ‘The Church Of Love & Ruin’. In the words of the man himself expect the following: “Inspired by the ’boutique festival’ scene, “Church” focuses on atmosphere, handpicked artists, and chaotic, inspired moments of surprise throughout the show (i.e. being part of a ‘toilet paper dodgeball’ game with 800 other people). Come & be blessed.”
BLOOD OF THE SPECTRE / DOOMED FROM DAY ONE
11th – BIRMINGHAM Scruffy Murphy’s, 12th – LONDON The New Cross Inn, 13th – SWINDON 12 Bar, 14th – MAIDENHEAD HOBFEST Hobgoblin, 16th – HIGH WYCOMBE Scorpio’s Bar
Pay particular attention to Doomed From Day One on this UK tour. The young band mix everything from The Black Dahlia Murder inspired vocals and riffs to experimental jazz in their unique sound! Out of all the dates, Maidenhead looks like the one, although it doesn’t hit the map too often in musical terms, catching them in this sweaty venue with fine ales on tap seems like an opportunity not to be missed.
16th – BRIGHTON Concorde2 , 17th – NORWICH Waterfront, 18th – BIRMINGHAM O2 Academy 2 19th – READING Sub89, 20th – MANCHESTER Club Academy, 21st – GLASGOW Cathouse, 22nd – DUBLIN The Pint, 23rd – LONDON Underworld
It’d be a challenge to find a tour that is more deadly than the’ Womb to Waste Tour’. The line up consists of headliners Dying Fetus, Job For A Cowboy, Revocation and Cerebral Bore.
28th – LONDON Old Blues Last
Gnarwolves, a sick band, they were awesome at Hevy Fest and their latest release ‘Cru’ is always spinning at Crossfire HQ. This show is free, so there’s no reason not to attend!
18th – LONDON Camden Barfly
The Barfly is renowned for showcasing the best in new talent, with this gig being one of those nights. Her Parents are an exciting indie band born from the ashes of Dananananaykroyd, Stairs to Korea, and Internet Forever.
LA DISPUTE/TITLE FIGHT
20th – LONDON The Garage
If you are luckily enough to have a ticket for this one off show, you don’t need telling how special it will be. If you don’t it may well be worth splashing out on Viagogo or ebay. La Dispute put on a mesmerising live performance and Title Fight’s fast paced pop-punk is second to none. This is going to be amazing.
PIERCE THE VEIL
16 LEEDS Cockpit 2, 17 NEWCASTLE Academy 2, 18 GLASGOW Ivory Blacks, 20 NOTTINGHAM Rock City Basement, 21 LONDON Underworld, 22 BIRMINGHAM Asylum, 23 MANCHESTER Moho Live, 25 SOUTHAMPTON Joiners, 26 CARDIFF Clwb Ifor Bach, 27 BRISTOL The Fleece, 28 KINGSTON The Peel
Pierce The Veil are a growing phenomenon over the pond and we can’t get enough of their latest album ‘Collide With The Sky’. These shows seem pretty intimate for a band ready to explode into the scene, catch them while you can.
15th – SOUTHSEA Festival, 17th – GUILDFORD The Star, 19th – KINGSTON Bacchus, 20th – SUNDERLAND Bar One, 21st – HARTLEPOOl The Studio, 22nd – BIDEFORD Palladium, 27 SOUTHAMPTON Avondale House, 28th – RAMSGATE Red Arrows Club
The excellent Scholars are touring in support of new single Blinda Data which you can view below.
15th – SOUTHSEA, Various Venues
Bastions, Tall Ships, Polio, Veils, The Social Club, Black Moth, Gnarwolves and many more play this award winning festival that celebrates underground and independent music. Plenty of names on the bill to check out whilst they are still under the radar.
19th – BIRMINGHAM Hare & Hounds, 20th – MANCHESTER Moho Live, 21st – GLASGOW Captain’s Rest, 22nd – LEEDS Cockpit III, 23ed – SOUTHAMPTON Unit, 24th – BRISTOL Croft, 25th – LONDON Borderline
Melodic punk rock doesn’t get more emotional than The Menzingers, their latest album ‘On The Impossible Past’ is absolutely perfect. Expect songs taken from that release and their large back catalogue of impressive tunes.
WE ARE THE OCEAN/GIANTS
18 – EXETER Cavern, 19 – LONDON Barfly, 20 – LEEDS Cockpit II, 22 – MANCHESTER Deaf Institute, 23 – GLASGOW King Tut’s, 25 – CARLISLE Brickyard, 26 – SHEFFIELD Academy II, 27 – WREXHAM Central Station, 28 – DUBLIN Academy II, 29 – BELFAST Speakeasy
After the controversial departure of vocalist Dan Brown and with a new album up their sleeves it’ll be interesting to see the new look We Are The Ocean perform in front of their own fans. But what’s even more exciting is that skate-punks Giants are opening up the shows. We featured this band latest single ‘Snakes’ earlier in August and are expecting big things to come from them.
17th – LONDON, The Borderline
Origionating from Aberdeen, The Xcerts draw influence from iconic Scottish bands such as Biffy Clyro and Suciperro. At this intimate show the young band will be playing their critically acclaimed album ‘Scatterbrain’ in full.
We had a rad time at Hevy Fest last year and this year looks set to compete with a line-up that shows great potential for another fun weekend packed with great music.
Back in Port Lympne in Kent, at the Wild Animal Park, Saturday night will be co-headlined by The Dillinger Escape Plan and Architects. Dillinger aren’t even doing any other European festivals this summer. NONE! The rest of the line-up is looking like this so far:
The Dillinger Escape Plan (European Festival Exclusive), Architects (co-headline), Bouncing Souls, We Are The Ocean, Zebrahead, Capdown, Ceremony (UK Festival Exclusive), Polar Bear Club, Your Demise, Rise To Remain, Touche Amore (UK Festival Exclusive), La Dispute (UK Festival Exclusive), November Coming Fire, Awaken Demons (UK Festival Exclusive), Man Overboard, Lemuria, Brutality Will Prevail, Spycatcher, Death Is Not Glamorous, Rot In Hell, Polar, Cheap Girls, Heart In Hand, Hang The Bastard and Hildamay.
Weekend camping tickets are priced at £89 and will include free entry to Port Lympne Wild Animal Park for the weekend. Tickets will be available online from www.hevy.co.uk / 0843 221 0100 / and from selected HMV stores across the UK.
Probably worth it for Dillinger, Architects, Ceremony, Polar Bear Club, Touche Amore and La Dispute alone. OK, that’s quite a lot already. Roll on the announcement of the rest of the 80 band strong bill!