Category Archives: Ska

Ratatat – The Skints Are At The Front Door!

After much umm-ing and aah-ing, whether it be over choices of songs to cover, songs to release, and generally how much to tease their loyal fans, the Skints have kept the attention of thousands, mainly due to their frankly fantastic debut album, ‘Live, Breathe, Build, Believe.’

But finally, and thankfully, they have given us something! Their new single Ratatat has been released, and it’s a cracker!  A great mix of rap, dub, ska and reggae, it sees a slightly different take on the last album, whilst keeping the aspects that make them so fantastic!

Not only this, but they’ve also released the album artwork AND title for the new album – ‘Part and Parcel’ is due to be released on April 9th and  I cannot wait! Designed by the same designer of their t-shirts and last album, it’s a great bold statement, and I’m sure it’ll look great as it rises up the charts on it’s release. Enjoy!

Advertisements
Tagged , , ,

Slam Dunk

Well, everyone’s been waiting. I say everyone, it’s not exactly a major festival, but ho-hum. It’s out. As you can probably tell, I’m not exactly thrilled by the first announcements of this year’s Slam Dunk Festival. The line-up includes Architects, Cancer Bats, and Forever The Sickest Kids, and, aside from the King Blues, who are just fantastic, and I cannot wait to see again, it’s all sounding like a bit of a headache! Maybe I’m just being negative, and I’ll wait and see, with some updates on the new announcements, but I’m hoping for more ska, as last year’s festival was probably the most fun I’ve ever had at a show, with bands like The Skints, who I’m sure will be making a return this year, Reel Big Fish and Less Than Jake.

Slam Dunk to me, means punk, reggae, and ska, but it all seems to be getting a little bit screamo for my liking. We’ll have to wait and see!

Tagged , , , , , , , ,

Tell The Skints I’m Getting Impatient.

So, the Skints have finally closed their PledgeMusic account, after recieving far more donations than they ever could have hoped for. Which means their album MUST be on the way. I’ve been listening to their first album ‘Live, Breathe, Build, Believe’ for years now, and it has to be one of my favourite debut albums of all time. So my expectations built up by the variety of different acoustic covers released over the past few months on their facebook page have made the wait almost unbearable. Their covers have opened my eyes up to a whole variety of old reggae artists, whether it be Desmond Dekker, with their cover of ‘It Mek’ or Dennis Brown and his ‘Lips of Wine.’ The most recent release, which is set to be their most popular with almost 30,000 views already, is a cover of Katy B’s ‘On a Mission.’ I can’t say I’m a big fan of the original, but this ‘dub-ified’ version is sure to get reggae lover’s pulses racing. Check it out below. I’ll let you know when the new album’s out, it’s sure to be one of the highlights of 2012!!

Oh. Also, Marcia, musician extraordinaire from the Skints, is a bit of a blogger herself. Check out her Tumblr which features everything from Skints news to recipes and random information about her life, if you’re into stalking talented people.

Tagged , , , , , , , ,

R.I.P Mouthwash!

It was a shame to hear about the split of long-standing British ska-punk group Mouthwash this month, just days after the release of the video for new single, ‘Nine To Five.’ The video, as seen below, was released on 20th June, whilst the split was announced on the 21st:

The band have been going since 1995 and have made a name for themselves as one of the most underrated British groups out there within the genre.

Despite being christened as an official ‘Erbert only last year, after seeing them support the King Blues with the Dirty Revolution in May, it was still sad news, as their music has made a big impact on me, especially their last album, ‘True Stories.”

Many bands have been paying homage to the group since the split, and it’s clear to see that this band have made a huge impact upon the scene, so they will be sorely missed. One such group are Sonic Boom Six, so Barney Boom decided to publish his first videoblog as a tribute to the band and their successes! R.I.P Mouthwash!

Tagged , , , , , , , , ,

Light The Horizon Finally Available!

For all of you Bedouin Soundclash fans in the UK who have been wondering when on earth they are going to release Light The Horizon, in a format that doesn’t mean buying the imported CD for £40 on Amazon, you’ll be pleased to hear that you will be able to download the album from iTunes from 23rd May. If you pre-order now, the album is only £6.99.

From what I have heard already, with classic tracks like ‘Mountain Top’ and ‘Fool’s Tattoo,’ the album will be worth the very long wait. Enjoy!

http://itunes.apple.com/gb/preorder/light-the-horizon/id437348648?affId=1409847

The band also have an upcoming UK tour. Check out the link for more details: http://www.bedouinsoundclash.com/events

Tagged , , , , ,

Artist of the Week – Buster Shuffle

Doing a cover of Madness’ ‘One Step Beyond’ at my school’s version of Stars In Their Eyes was enough to reaffirm my love of classic 80’s ska. Bands like the Specials and Madness influenced not only me, but countless of UK ska bands around today, such as Sonic Boom Six, The King Blues and The Skints.
So when I saw an advert that described Buster Shuffle’s ‘Our Night Out’ as like ‘Madness’ early days,’ my favourite Madness period, I knew I had to check them out! The album has been out since 2009, and since then they seem to have developed quite a fan base, and have been touring with the likes of The Holloways and The Wombats
The first thing to hit you is lead vocalist Jethro Baker’s punchy and original cockney accent. The band have even been described as ‘more English than the Queen,’ which embodies itself in the cheeky, carefree lyrics of songs like ‘Maneater’ and ‘You’re Alright’ His lyrics are simple, yet still funny, clever and infectiously catchy. Baker’s voice adds a touch of fun and a ‘cheeky chappy’ tone to every song. He is also the pianist of the group, and it is the piano which really helps the band stand out from some of today’s other ska and rock bands.
Baker took advantage of his piano skills with an impromptu busking session with him and his band mates, utilising the ‘Play Me, I’m Yours’ scheme set up in 2008 with the aim of bringing people together through music in cities across the globe. The band played mini-gigs at 10 different pianos in London, before being rudely cut short and moved on by the police??!! Personally, when the piano actually has ‘Play Me, I’m Yours’ written all over it, it seems like an opportunity not to be wasted?
Anyway, you can see the video from their street performances below:

The album itself is incredibly short, at only 28 minutes, yet every song is packed full of fun and energy, making every minute worthwhile! Whilst the album ventures little further than the title suggests lyrically – Our Night Out – it is not music designed to be listened to for its deep lyrical content, it was made to have fun to, however Baker’s lyrics are far from bad – they are really clever and witty, and I can guarantee you’ll walk away in a much better mood with a smile on your face – what more could you want?
Check out the unique cover of the Jerry Lee Lewis Classic here. It really shows off what the band are capable of, even on such a tiny stage! (You might want to skip to about 1:30!)

Tagged , , , , ,

The King Blues – Punk and Poetry

Well, seemingly lightyears since the news of a new album from The King Blues was first released, Punk and Poetry is finally here! And thank god it is, because it is yet another stunning album from the UK’s best up-and-coming punk band!
Whilst the band were originally intending on writing more of a love and relationship based album, the current political climate led them to have a change of heart. So from the onset, there is no doubt that The King Blues are as angry as they have always been!
The opening track features a dramatic and theatrical instrumental section backing Jonny Fox’s poem for the ‘Last of the Dreamers.’
See an a capella version of the opener below:

As if they didn’t need to certify that they were angry any more than was already clear, this is followed by the aural assault of ‘We Are F**cking Angry.’ Commenting on the political turmoil around the globe, as well as at home in the UK, this couldn’t be any more hard hitting if they tried, with a pounding mix of Dubstep-style synths, heavy guitar, and Itch’s grating vocals.
Next up is the band’s new single – Set The World On Fire. This adds a lighter, poppier sound into the mix, whilst always managing to retain great lyrics. The song draws parallels between Itch and a stereotypical MP – highlighting how, as a country, we have a tendency to just skip over what is in the news, as we have all become so numbed to what is going on, after years and years of it, such as in the line: ‘The war wages is on and it’s only eight o’clock!’ This is only one of many issues that this song addresses, others including plastic surgery and asylum seekers.
With a new lineup comes a new sound, and it is instantly obvious that whilst Itch’s lyrics remain as they used to be, there is a very different tune driving them forwards. Additional guitarists and new bassists and keyboardists have brought a much fuller sound to the band. It is very noticeable that the ukelele takes much less prominence, and instead there is more room for electric guitar, rather than Jamie Jazz’s trusty acoustic!

This new style includes other songs, such as I Want You, another of my personal favourites, which likens his love to how ‘the fat boys want Chubby Checker!’ The older single Headbutt, and Everything Happens For A Reason are two more of the poppier tracks, yet still stand out for me as some of the best, the latter being a vivid account of Itch’s buildup to becoming a father.
However, one song which really stands out to me is one which sticks more within the boundaries of the traditional ska-punk style – The future’s not what it used to be – My favourite track on the album. The song kicks off with a good old ska beat, accompanying a slow horn section, where Itch claims to have drawn inspiration from the Specials’ ‘Ghost Town.’ Whilst the song may seem a little slow at first, it picks up towards the end into a breakneck, almost incomprehendable fury, before dying back down into the chilled out chorus.
This is yet another unmissable release from the King Blues, so DON’T miss it! With a running time of 30 minutes exactly, the pace remains quick throughout, but the King Blues manage to cram in everything that needs saying, and much, much more within this time, thanks to skill of the band themselves combined with Itch’s one-of-a-kind lyrical talent! This album is a real credit to what this band are capable of, and is yet another example which goes to show that just because a punk band changes their style, THEY HAVE NOT SOLD OUT!

Tagged , , , , , , ,

More Bands and Dates Announced for Slam Dunk Festival!

Four additional bands have been added to the ever growing line up for this year’s Slam Dunk Festival due to take place in mid-May. Set Your Goals, Francesqa, Hit The Lights and Tek-One will all be playing this year – clearly Francesqa and Set Your Goals made a good impression at last year’s festival and are back for more fun this year!

Not only this, but the Slam Dunk organization has organized a series of mini-festivals.
Goldfinger, Anti-Flag, Less Than Jake and Set Your Goals will all be playing two shows together. One at the Glasgow ABC on 27th May, and the other at Guildhall, Southampton on 31st May.

On top of this, there will be another show with more acts at the Birmingham HMV Institute on 30th May, with Less Than Jake, Goldfinger, Anti-Flag, The Starting Line, MC Lars, Set Your Goals, Hit The Lights and We Are The Ocean.

So there’s no excuse for all you punk and ska fans out there saying there’s never any decent shows for you to go to! Slam Dunk is there for everyone to enjoy!

See the full line-up for the main festivals so far below:

Tagged , , , , , , , , , ,

Slam Dunk Acts Announced!

Slam Dunk Festival is all set to take place again this year in May. The original festival will be held in Leeds as usual, on 28th May, at Leeds University, whilst last years new addition of ‘Slam Dunk South’ will be held at the University of Hertfordshire in Hatfield again, on May 29th. I attended Slam Dunk South last year, and despite the gaping holes in the festival’s organization, it was still a fun little festival. This year, there looks to be a lot of ska, with two of the headliners as Reel Big Fish and Less Than Jake, the other being 3OH!3, who rose to fame last year with their song featuring Katy Perry, not that I’m familiar with them! I wasn’t sure about the festival’s line up to start with, but the most recent acts to be announced included Anti-Flag, Goldfinger and The Skints, so I’m going to try and get my tickets.
See the full line up so far for this years festival below:

Tagged , , , , , , , ,

The King Blues NEW SINGLE – Set The World On Fire

The King Blues have released their new single from the upcoming album, Punk and Poetry today, and it looks promising!
The band have received a lot of criticism from older fans recently, about their new ‘poppier’ sound, but the messages are still there, and I think this new song will hopefully encourage all those doubtful fans, who are coming out with the usual rubbish about the band being sell-outs, to have a proper listen to their new sound, and realise that The King Blues are still one of the best bands out there today!
Check out the official video for ‘Set The World On Fire’ below:

Tagged , , , ,