Lush reunite

It's been almost 20 years since Lush, one of the original shoegaze groups of the 1990s UK music scene, split after the tragic passing of drummer Chris Acland.  Now Miki Berenyi, Emma Anderson, and Phil King are back as Lush, with plans to release a box set featuring most of the band's recorded output and an upcoming performance at the Roundhouse in … [Read more...]

Comet Gain – Paperback Ghosts

Since their first releases in the early 1990s, Comet Gain have ploughed an erratically individualistic furrow alongside any other more well known Britpop band you can remember. Less cynical than The Beautiful South, less satirical than Pulp, as lyrical if less self regarding as Morrissey, their music has found fewer admirers than you might expect. … [Read more...]

The Kooks – Down EP

You might expect the Kooks to know what they're doing. Formed in 2004, the south London four piece are unashamed survivors of the wave of 00s UK guitar bands that included The Libertines, Kaiser Chiefs and Franz Ferdinand, and a decade of experience needn't make any guitar band a dull bunch, as the Kooks can show us today. Lead track "Down" is … [Read more...]

Suede – Bloodsports

Hunky-dory Bloodsports heralds the welcome return of British band Suede after an over-10-year absence from the music scene.  Who would have thought that a band that made its name during the heady years of the 1990s, when Britpop ruled the U.K. and indie U.S. airwaves, would make a comeback in 2013? Who would have thought that, after all these … [Read more...]

The Boo Radleys – Giant Steps & Wake Up Boo! (deluxe 3CD editions)

Hindsight can be both a help and a hindrance to old records retrieved from semi-obscurity for another bid to find affectionate space in CD racks.  Certainly, retrospective reviewing of the two ‘middle’ and best known albums in the six-strong album catalogue of The Boo Radleys throws up flattering and not-so-flattering new lights. Released to … [Read more...]

deVries – Death To God

The deVries album Death To God caught me completely by surprise. Apparently bandleader and namesake Travis DeVries was in a Seattle band The Turn-ons, whose output received critical praise and endorsements from the likes of REM's Peter Buck. Having gone solo -- with backing musicians, natch -- DeVries put together this record a couple of years ago … [Read more...]

The Molotovs – And The Heads Did Roll

I heard The Molotovs for the first time earlier this summer, and "Flowers"  is the best song I think I heard this year. Simultaneously frantic and laid-back, an actually danceable slice of cool, sharp Britbop that manages to recall the giddy heights of 2-Tone, the near chaotic funk experimentalism of 23 Skidoo, the gritted teeth of Babyshambles, … [Read more...]

Pictures Of Then – And The Wicked Sea

An overwhelming sense of guilt is the only thing I feel as I review this second long player from Minnesota's Pictures Of Then. Here's a band that's had its music featured on two different MTV reality shows and even toured as part of the network's Choose or Lose Tour. This is also the same lot of musicians who garnered decent billing at four … [Read more...]

Placebo – Battle For The Sun

Critically acclaimed overseas since their debut album hit British record stores back in 1996, the occasionally turbid and consistently androgynous sounds of neo-glam trailblazers Placebo never truly caught on stateside. Despite consistent adoration from the U.K. press, the band was quick to move away from the alt-rock crush of the eponymously … [Read more...]

MEandJOANCOLLINS – Love. Trust. Faith. Lust.

Like the finest glam rock of yore, the Cambridge, MA outfit MEandJOANCOLLINS specialize in a sweaty fusion of sexual perversion and hard rockin’ bombast. But unlike the genre’s forefathers (T. Rex, Roxy Music) this indie-minded foursome steers clear of any campy theatricality and fantastical preoccupations with grandeur. The grouop's debut LP … [Read more...]