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Release Archive
< < Release Reviews on Manchester Music For August, 2004

Bringing you all the Release Reviews that matter since 1999

WORLD WITHOUT SOUND
31 August 2004 / Demo / 5-Trk CD
:: The Mule Boom (Pre Cherry Ghost) ::
The Mule Boom are like those that you envied at school. Shrewder than the rest they could calculate just the minimum amount of work necessary to produce impressive results.

6 DEGREES OF SEPARATION
31 August 2004 / Demo / 7-Trk CD
:: The Ghosts ::
Mossley goth rockers return in punkier form.

WAIT AND SEE
31 August 2004 / Demo / 15-Trk CD
:: Rob McCulloch ::
The battle in music between “entertainment” and “art”. It is a war fought out between “talent” and “substance” and Rob McCulloch unfortunately has shades of one, but is in short supply of the other.

THE SUN RISES IN THE EAST
31 August 2004 / Artificial Records / 7-Trk CD
:: Ronin ::
Like Iron Maiden on a massive and violent, post-binge come down or Robert Plant after having a really bad day at Wizardry College, they aren’t half loud and downright miserable.

HYPERTENSION
31 August 2004 / Performing Chimp Records / 11-Trk CD
:: Jon Gomm ::
It is this lack of intensity, which leaves more space for the musicianship to take centre stage and allows Gomm’s nifty acoustic guitar playing to cut out any brooding doubts over the content or quality of the actual songs.

SCHOOL UNIFORM
31 August 2004 / Promo / 2-Trk CD
:: The Pipettes ::
Imagine if all the bloke-dominated musical movements of the last 30 years never happened. Next, imagine the girl groups had spent less time perfecting the ideal hairdo and more time carving who was fit into bus shelter.

ALBUM SAMPLER
31 August 2004 / Demo / 4-Trk CD
:: Dear Eskimo ::
You may have noticed pop's been having a bit of a funny turn of late. Not everyone wants to listen to "four tousled young men with two guitars and a bass and drums" nor does that mean they want every record in the Top 20 to sound like a cola commercial.

ALBUM SAMPLER
30 August 2004 / Promo / 2-Trk CD
:: Blind Jackson ::
The vocals antagonise and grate with incredible force, reminiscent of Ozzy Osbourne trying to rap with the Beastie Boys.

ALWAYS OUTNUMBERED, NEVER OUTGUNNED
23 August 2004 / XL / 12-Trk CD
:: The Prodigy ::
One of the longest hiatuses from one of Britain's biggest and most revered. Has the wait been justified?

FUR SOFT AS FUR
30 August 2004 / Demo / 3 Trk CD
:: The Boy Least Likely To ::
The first thing that goes through your mind is Dexy’s Midnight Runners (Dungaree version) spliced with the Mammas and The Pappas.

MY CD
30 August 2004 / Demo / 4 Trk CD
:: SAY (Say Jansfield) ::
The quirky seriousness of Yes and the digital cybernetics of John Foxx in a brilliant soup of sprightly verses and an epic chorus - as much charm as an on form Abba with rock sensibilities.

I TRIED IT, I LIKED IT, I LOVED IT * record of the week *
30 August 2004 / Demo / 3 Trk CD
:: Decoration ::
Take as many cues from Coronation Street as they do from the cutting edge inspiration of the original days of Postcard, Creation and Rough Trade

ONLY FOR YOU
30 August 2004 / 3 Trk CD :: Stop The Clock
:: James Carrington ::
Definitely a case of setting an example for solo singer songwriters everywhere

BRAND NEW MORNING
30 August 2004 / 9 Trk CD :: SPV
:: Magnum ::
Like the pensioner’s blown vinyl wallpaper in the old house down the road, it’s from another era

I WANT MORE
30 August 2004 / Promo / 4 Trk CD
:: Dean Walker ::
Splattered guitars, chunky distortions and more than enough energy to make the walls bow out in a mid garden terrace

FAILURES NOT FLATTERING (WHAT’S YOUR PROBLEM)
30 August 2004 / Universal / 1 Trk CD (Geffen, Drive Thru, Island)
:: New Found Glory ::
“Failures Not Flattering” may be sugar coated faux-punk with hints of modern metal, but it’s a great pop song

WISHING ON A STAR
30 August 2004 / V2 / 3 Trk CD
:: Paul Weller ::
The growing gap between his airborne thrashings of fed back Rickenbackers and this orchestrated cabaret, is now like a chasm

THE LIBERTINES
30 August 2004 / Rough Trade / 14 Trk CD
:: The Libertines ::
Whilst tabloid coverage guarentees Doherty an almost "Pop Idol" level of interest, the real stuff seems to be right here on this slab of Rough Trade plastic

BROTHER DOWN
30 August 2004 / Universal / 1 Trk CD (Vertigo)
:: Sam Roberts ::
Neither too polished, or too off the beaten track, it all seems just right and provides a nice, surprising summer jangle

STEP CLOSER
30 August 2004 / Demo / 3 Trk CD
:: The Wandering Step ::
spent Six Gun cartridges and smashed up Surf boards have been mysteriously found on the moors of Belmont

FLAMINGO HONEY
30 August 2004 / XL / 10 Trk CD
:: Whirlwind Heat ::
Says more in a minute of scratchy chords and swirling guitars, than 3 minutes of hackneyed retro rock

PIES
30 August 2004 / XL / 3 Trk CD
:: Wiley ::
Tapping into (or tucking into..) something quite basic but ultimately entertaining

YOUNG FOREVER
30 August 2004 / Rough Trade / 12 Trk CD
:: Aberfeldy ::
Hang onto your hats. Aberfeldy have arrived just as the new wave of folk and acoustically fuelled balladeering takes off

WHERE DAMAGE ISN’T ALREADY DONE
23 August 2004 / XL / 3-Trk CD
:: The Radio Dept. ::
Rife with sunny melodies, fuzzy droning guitars and soft breathy vocals it could well belong to the Creation archive from about 1991.

ISSUE #7
24 August 2004 / Promo / Fanzine
:: High Voltage ::
Produced by Richard Cheetham patron of the website and revered live promotion night of the same name, ‘High Voltage’s’ seventh outing adheres to much the same principles that make his other projects so appealing.

LO-TECH SOLUTIONS TO HI-TECH PROBLEMS
24 August 2004 / Cityscape / 12-Trk CD
:: Merchandise ::
Making summer a real possibility is the latest album from Merchandise creating a catchy alt-pop essence, ready to shine its bright torch over our souls to give us back the summer that was almost never there.

THE FLOATING FORMATION EP
24 August 2004 / Seldom / 4-Trk CD
:: OKJunior ::
OKJunior can create a more happy Verve sound while holding on to some of its darker attitude.

DEMO
24 August 2004 / Demo / 3-Trk CD
:: Charm Offensive ::
Charm Offesnive are definitely not charming, nor particularly offensive - just your average rock band pelting out hard tunes one minute, then the slower numbers the next.

PLAN E
24 August 2004 / Demo / 11-Trk CD
:: Instant Species ::
How a still-unsigned band can finance the whole production and distribution of five albums shows that these guys have spirit. And that very spirit has created an eclectic mix of 11 sleazy tracks coupled with the sound of rock, pop, disco and even country.

WHAT COME NEXT/TAKE THESE EYES
24 August 2004 / Demo / 2-Trk CD
:: Loose Canon ::
Lo-fi punkie indie thingies come up aces.

AGNES, QUEEN OF SORROW
23 August 2004 / Domino / 1-Trk CD
:: Bonnie "Prince" Billy ::
For those not savvy in the discipline of alt-country this is none other than William Oldham in yet another guise.

PROGRESSION OF DIRECTION
24 August 2004 / Demo / 3-Trk CD
:: Allerjen ::
Dischuffed radio-unfriendly grindcore with shards of potential.

SYNCHRONISE YOUR SMILES
24 August 2004 / Demo / 3-Trk CD
:: Omerta ::
The sound of the moors high above the M62 on a late summer evening and Cath Aubergine can't stop playing it.

SCREW YOUR HEAD ON
24 August 2004 / CNR Records / 3 Trk CD / 2 Trk 7
:: Acarine ::
I'm amazed the Streets backlash hasn't hit yet. Perhaps nobody wants to point at the emperor's new Burberry cos having a half-decent Britrap star is better than none at all. Good job Acarine are here then really.

THE BOY WITH THE FIREWORK
24 August 2004 / MoonBaboon / 14-Trk CD
:: Limousine ::
Serves up uninspiringly varnished transatlantic chunks of beefed-up guitar topped with post-grunge vocal melodies, delivered with the double-underlined competence which might appeal to people who buy guitar magazines.

DEMO
24 August 2004 / Demo / 3-Trk CD
:: Cognoscenti ::
A genre-defying slab of borderline insanity where early 80s Fall meets post-rock, Sonic Boom’s EAR and the weirder end of Belle and Sebastian.

THE FIRST ALBUM * record of the week *
23 August 2004 / 13 Trk CD :: banana
:: Ella Guru ::
Traditional but uncompromisingly Impeccable arrangements, performances and outstanding vocal work

SMILE
23 August 2004 / 1 Trk CD :: Loog
:: Madaction ::
Whilst its both big and pretty at the same time, it also remains somewhat predictable

ALIVE & AMPLIFIED
23 August 2004 / SonyBMG / 1 Trk CD
:: The Mooney Suzuki ::
Cock rocking chorus lines and classic rock references

I WANT MORE
23 August 2004 / 1 Trk Promo :: Cheeky
:: Faithless ::
Faithless have stoked up a credible dance number, which swims with energy and vibrant sequencing.

SICK FIXATION
23 August 2004 / Integrity Records / 3 Trk CD (Devil In The Woods)
:: Meow Meow ::
If Brian Wilson had fallen in love with Neil Young and My Bloody Valentine

WHISKEY TANGO GHOSTS
23 August 2004 / 4 AD / 12 Trk CD
:: Tanya Donelly ::
Described as a beautiful album and there’s probably no other way term to use.

BUBBLEGUM
23 August 2004 / Beggars Banquet / 15 Trk CD
:: Mark Lanegan ::
A deep, introspective but eminently accessible album

OMERTA (re-Issue)
23 August 2004 / 2 Trk CD :: Eat Sleep
:: The Belles ::
Nice but in all honestly, reasonably ornamental.

MOVING TO BLACKWATER
23 August 2004 / 3 Trk CD :: Xtra Mile Recordings
:: Reuben ::
Reuben have the guts and melodic inspiration to challenge the biggest names in the current crop of genuinely original British rock

GREY WILL FADE
23 August 2004 / Double Dragon / 10 Trk CD
:: Charlotte Hatherley ::
Hartherly has produced a consistent and uniquely personal stamp on her solo efforts

FEELINGS ARE GOOD AND OTHER LIES
23 August 2004 / 12 Trk CD :: Revolver
:: John Taylor ::
Maybe hackneyed in the post Nirvana / Grunge explosion of '96, but in today’s retro-fuelled frenzy,essentially relevant

SHOTS IN THE DISTANCE
16 August 2004 / 3 Trk CD :: Comedown Records
:: Amityville ::
Former Geneva frontman dishes out lessons to under performing indie hopefuls

HELLO IS THIS THING ON ?
16 August 2004 / Warp / 2 Trk CD
:: ! ! ! (Chk Chk Chk) ::
Jazzy dub that could have fallen off the edges of The Clash’s Sandinista sessions

L.S.F. [LOST SOULS FOREVER]
16 August 2004 / RCA / 4 Trk Enhanced CD (BMG)
:: Kasabian ::
“It’s all just fuckin’ America at the moment and Britains gonna fight back….”

THUNDER LIGHTENING STRIKE
16 August 2004 / Memphis Industries / 11 Trk CD
:: The GO! Team ::
A must have. Listen to ”Panther Dash” and tell me otherwise.

LIGHT IN HER WINDOW
16 August 2004 / XL / 3 Trk CD
:: The Golden Virgins ::
Subtle songs and folky implosions melded to grinding basslines and fractured guitars

MICHAEL
16 August 2004 / Domino / 1 Trk CD
:: Franz Ferdinand ::
“We’re Just Making Plans For Nigel”. As played by Orange Juice and The Hives

BAREFOOT IN THE HEAD
16 August 2004 / Southern Fried Records / 3 Trk CD
:: A Man Called Adam ::
Fug Remix provides that lazy Sunday afternoon chill out feeling with ease.

MY MY MY
16 August 2004 / Southern Fried Records / 3 Trk CD
:: Armand Van Helden ::
“It’ll-Be-A-Hit” by the time your flight touches back down at John Lennon (International) Airport

SIL NUM TAO
16 August 2004 / Skint / 3 Trk CD
:: Freq Nasty ::
One for the dance floor or a fully pimped up Vauxhall Corsa

SOMETHING’S GOING ON
16 August 2004 / City Slang / 1 Trk CD :: (Labels, EMI)
:: Lambchop ::
Kurt Wagners vocal lines are even more frazzled and broken than ever

BURN YOUR YOUTH
16 August 2004 / 1 Trk CD :: Braking Dog
:: Johnny Panic ::
McFly and Busted are just a short step away

MASTER OF THE MOON
16 August 2004 / 10 Trk CD :: SPV
:: Dio ::
A relatively slow but heavy album, which makes it a bit stodgy and despite obvious clichés, allows Ronnie James Dio to age gracefully

GLITTER AND TRAUMA * record of the week *
16 August 2004 / Beggars Banquet / 3 Trk CD
:: Biffy Clyro ::
It's the mix of both the beautiful and the head shrinking that has allowed Biffy to amass an army of dedicated followers

PEARL NECKLACE
16 August 2004 / Riverman / 11 Trk CD
:: Colour Of Fire ::
Colour Of Fire jut their explosive moments next to some strong, melodic material

I WANNA LOVE YOU
09 August 2004 / 2 Trk CD :: Longlostbrother
:: Pearl ::
Up to the heady expectations of a top 40 hit that you won’t-remember-the-title-of-next-month.

STILL STRUNG OUT
09 August 2004 / Storm / 4 Trk CD
:: The Koreans ::
South Londoners, The Koreans are another addition to Manchester label Storm

HELP YOURSELF
09 August 2004 / Universal / 2 Trk CD (Island)
:: Amy Winehouse ::
Dour outlook and jazzy noodlings from Amy Winehouse

ANY MINUTE NOW
09 August 2004 / Pias / 1 Trk CD
:: Soulwax ::
Skewered guitars break into a finale that sounds like the needles been torn out of the groove

LESSER MATTERS
09 August 2004 / XL / 13 Trk CD
:: The Radio Dept. ::
An intoxicating array of spaced out rock songs and ballads. Real indie is back. Let's buy some shoes to gaze at.

CAN'T STAND ME NOW
09 August 2004 / Rough Trade / 2-Trk CD
:: The Libertines ::
Call me old fashioned but I remember a time when bands that frequented the covers of well-read publications did so for one specific reason.

SUMMER
02 August 2004 / Double Dragon / 3-Trk CD
:: Charlotte Hatherley ::
The prettiest member of Ash in an unsurprisingly Ash-like debut.

DEMO
03 August 2004 / Demo / 3-Trk CD
:: Three Ways West ::
As the saying goes, ‘The pen is mightier than the sword’ but sometimes the sword is still necessary to enforce things.

DEMO
03 August 2004 / Demo / 4-Trk
:: Ceratones ::
Grounded in the Brit indie of the mid 90s Ceratones are a little more exciting than one might initially imagine.

BROWN FLAG
03 August 2004 / Demo / 2-Trk CD
:: DeSalvo ::
If The Jesus Lizard collaborated with Sepultura it could sound something like this.

DEMO
03 August 2004 / Demo / 2-Trk CD
:: The Deadbeats ::
Yee-ha brother! Hillbilly swinging blues all the way from…er…Withington, probably.

DEMO
03 August 2004 / Demo / 3-Trk CD
:: Megarider ::
Megarider lack no amount of charm, it’s just owing to your character whether you choose to recognise it or not.

DEMO
03 August 2004 / Demo / 3-Trk CD
:: Serotonin (Portsmouth) ::
Pop punk from Portsmouth with more balls than snooker halls.

(___) IS MISSING SAMPLER
03 August 2004 / Demo / 3-Trk
:: Transelement ::
The one thing you can always expect with Transelement is that you’ll never get exactly what you expected. There is still not one band that sounds like this and few sound nearly as great.

DEMO *Record of the Week*
03 August 2004 / Demo / 4-Trk CD
:: I Had An Inkling ::
I Had An Inkling are probably what Wire or PIL would sound like today if they had been incarnated a couple of decades on. They are what today’s new wave revivalists wished they sounded like had they any imagination. A true classic.

LAY THIS HATE TO REST
03 August 2004 / Demo / 4-Trk
:: Forena ::
The whole tortured soul that smokes 90 lung liners a day aesthetic has been a boring truism since the death of grunge.

THE COMPLETE GUIDE TO SPACE FOLK
03 August 2004 / Demo / 4-Trk CD
:: Lynskey ::
Is it a pop record? Is it a club record? Is it a chill out record? Who knows? Hours of hard graft may be needed to decipher what the record is trying to make you feel.

NOT AFRAID TO BE HAPPY
03 August 2004 / Demo / 9-Trk CD
:: Hilton ::
Hilton have produced a very compassionate collection of songs that sound quite eclectic whilst all still maintaining a quite soothing quality.

S/T
03 August 2004 / Demo / 5-Trk CD
:: Gabriel Minnikin ::
With a sickly resistance to most things, this record sounds like a painfully slow break up that lasts for years.

FRIDAY NIGHT – MONDAY MORNING BLACKOUT EP
02 August 2004 / Promo / 3-Trk CD
:: The Vaults ::
To put that another, crueller way, you’re always going to sound better smothering an old genre in shit, than rerunning an old genre that sounds like someone having one.

MOO SICK - SERIOUSLY GROOVY LABEL SAMPLER
02 August 2004 / Seriously Groovy / 13-Trk CD
:: Mother Goose :: Jet Johnson :: Emetrex :: Econoline ::
An independent platform for underground alternative and pop music this revoltingly (we presume unintentionally) titled compilation provides a worthy window in the world of cutting edge alternative and sparkling pop sounds.

AUTUMN BREAKS EP
02 August 2004 / Memphis Industries / 5-Trk CD
:: Broadway Project ::
Broadyway Project returns with another set of dark, psychedelic beats

UNHOLY WARCRY
02 August 2004 / Steamhammer / 1-Trk CD
:: Rhapsody ::
Rhapsody have apparently created their own genre – ‘Film Score Metal’ and if that doesn’t send a rumble through your intestines then the appearance of none other than Christopher Lee will have rushing for the commode.

THE WEIGHT OF THE WORLD
02 August 2004 / Steamhammer / 10-Trk CD
:: Metal Church ::
Are you ready to rock like it's 1982?

SO REAL EP
02 August 2004 / Headwrecker / 4-Trk CD
:: Accelerator ::
Accelerator subscribe to that ‘look at how fast we’re living’ cliché. It’s old and it’s boring and frankly rather like this EP.

THE UGLY AND THE BEAUTIFUL
02 August 2004 / Pias / 4-Trk CD
:: The Real Tuesday Weld ::
Decent lounge pop when it frees its head from its own arse.

HELIOPOLIS BY NIGHT *Single of the Week*
02 August 2004 / Rough Trade / 1-Trk CD
:: Aberfeldy ::
Gorgeous west coast vocal folk pop from Edinburgh

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