E.P Review: All These Days by Gordon’s Alive!

Words: The Captain

Photo: Micky Cooper

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In the words of Kuzco… “BOOM BABY!” (if you don’t know what I mean, watch “The Emperor’s New Groove”, you won’t regret it). Some swish new music to get my lugs around.

“All These Days” is Gordon’s Alive!’s second E.P and they are very much rockin’ (geddit?) the old school rock style. It’s super awesome! Good riffs, nice vocals and I can feel my foot tapping along of its own accord.

If you like the “vocal or instrumental sounds (or both) combined in such a way as to produce beauty of form, harmony, and expression of emotion”* that AC/DC and Led Zepplin make, you’ll LOVE Gordon’s Alive!. Trust me, four songs ain’t enough… WE WANT MORE!

If you want to see them live, then listen up!

Live at Harleys – 16th September 2017 @ Harleys, Ayr
EVENT LINK

SAHROCK – 11th November 2017 @ Ivory Blacks, Glasgow
EVENT LINK  

6th October 2017 @ Smash, Edinburgh

Facebook // Twitter // Spotify // Amazon // iTunes 

*definition of music, by Google Dictionary.

 

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Live Review: The Holy Smokes, The Baroque & Michael Barker @ Sneaky Pete’s 14/03/17

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(L-R: Michael Barker, The Holy Smokes, The Baroque)

Photos: Beth M Cameron 

Words: The Captain

It’s another Tuesday night in Edinburgh. It’s cold and raining, so what better place to be than inside helping The Holy Smokes celebrate the release of their new EP!

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First up is Michael Barker, who introduces himself and says he’ll be playing a mixture of covers and original songs. He makes every single cover his own and performs them so beautifully. If I had to pick a favourite cover, it would be “Adventure Time” by a band called Bry. It was beautiful and quite moving. He also has some good “stage banter” and talks about this “mad hair flapping” and that he doesn’t want to “look like that wonderwall guy” *cue audience laughter*.
Michael has an incredible voice and some damn good guitar playing skills. Unfortunately, I didn’t catch the name of the two original songs he did for his set, but they were amazing!

You can find him on Facebook and YouTube!

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Next up is The Baroque with his incredibly soft vocals layered over an electric guitar with a laptop acting as a piano. This guy is seriously cool and amazing! The music is beautiful to put it very simply and I don’t think any more words could describe it (but seriously, it’s damn good). He has a few funny pun song names too which make me giggle a little for exmaple “Away in a Stranger” from his first album (as he points out, he’s only got the one). and “Sunshine on Grief” (for all you non-Scotland residing folks, that a pun of “Sunshine on Leith” which reminds me… I must actually see that film at some point… anyway…. his last song is from his upcoming album (Songs of Joy and Rhythm) and is called “Song of Joy” and, just like all the rest, it’s amazing and super cool and yeah, you need to check him out! Like now… I’m watching you…..

You can find him on Facebook!

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Last, but by no means at all least, come The Holy Smokes! I’ve reviewed these guys on record before, and loved them, but this my first live show and I’m VERY excited. Like “omg a new kitten” excited. They start out by playing the title track from their new E.P “Let’s Go Out Drinking” and it’s rocky, it’s fast it’s awesome! I’m stood at the back doing a little bum boogie (there’s a lot of people in the venue and I’m small and didn’t fancy getting squashed, plus that gives more room to bum boogie).

They play a lot of their songs that I already know and a few I haven’t heard before so this was a good chance to hear the difference between record and live. The difference? There wasn’t any, they are just as fabulously good live as they are on record, something not all acts can master. They even dedicate their last few songs to the “most dedicated fan in the room”. Which is a guy called Callum (sorry if that’s the wrong spelling, there’s many different ways) who came all the way from Glasgow to see them *cue crowd cheering*. They even point out that they are selling handmade t-shirts at the merch stand, along with hard copies of their new E.P.

I implore you yo check them out because they are so super duper fantasicly cool and awesome. You can find them on Facebook, YouTube and BandCamp 

Live Review: Eyre Llew, L-Space & Echo Arcadia @ Sneaky Pete’s 08/03/17

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Words & Photo: The Captain

It’s a Wednesday night and what better to do than go to a gig on the Cowgate! Out of the line up, I’ve only ever heard Echo Arcadia before because they were on the final episode of “The Captain’s Log” the week before. However, I have heard great things about the two other bands so I am very excited.

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First up are Echo Arcadia and as the smoke machine hisses and releases a cloud of smoke a voice comes through it from the stage… “we get it you vape” which makes the audience, myself included, giggle a little. The lead singer, Leigh, introduces the first song called “Even the voices in my had hate me” which he follows up with “don’t worry haha. Echo Arcadia have an amazing stage presence and know how to please a crowd. Each song is perfectly executed and each one sounds different. You can tell which song is which (you know when some bands make songs that all sound the same, yeah they don’t do that). The vocals are perfectly harmonized and the lead guitarist can really shred the hell out of his strings.

About half-way through their set they have to tune their guitars so Leigh trys to fill that space with some jokes. One of which was “I tried to make a watch out of a belt once… it was a waist of time” *cue loud groan from everyone in the audience* it does mean they’re interacting with the audience and it is quite funny.

Ooooh, wait, I forgot a really exciting bit. THEY HAVE A VIOLA! (I thought it was a Violin until the player told me afterwards what the difference one). If a band has a violin/viola/cello I immediately love them. There’s something quite magical about strings with rock. If I had to choose a favourite song from their set it’s probably “Into the Shadows” with strong bass and drums starting slow and getting rockier and faster and then fading out again leaving only the vocals lingering in the air.

You should 100000% check these guys out and go and see them live.
You can find all their music and social media through their Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/echoarcadia 

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Next are L-Space. These guys are pretty awesome! Think if Doctor Who and Red Dwarf got together and made a band, this would be it. Soft vocals, layered together with guitar, bass and synth and occasional viola. Each song has a story, which I find impressive. It’s all about space and travel and it’s pretty damn cool. They speak about travelling to Mars and ask who would go (about 3 hands go up). They talk about what astronauts have to do in order to be able to go into space. They’re very knowledgeable about space which is very impressive.  It’s a bit out there, but really interesting and I’d definitely go and see them again!

If I had to choose a favourite song from their set I’d have to say the song “Brother Mars”. It was incredibly beautiful with the lead singers soft, quiet voice, no-one is talking, everyone is watching with awe. However, they also do a cover of Radiohead’s “Motion Picture Soundtrack” where they bring in the viola and it’s so slow and peaceful and very moving.

You can find all their music and social media through their Facebook:
https://www.facebook.com/lspaceband/

 

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Last, but not least, Eyre Llew from Nottingham hit the stage. Please excuse my language here but.. OH MY FUCKING GOD THESE GUYS ARE INCREDIBLE WHY HAVEN’T I HEARD THEM BEFORE I MUST NOW GO AND GET ALL THEIR MUSIC!

It seems as if all the songs flow perfectly into each other with no space in between. It’s loud, it’s powerful, it’s incredible.! These guys are an ambient/instrumental rock band. Little or minimal vocals with driven guitars, drums, piano and allllllll the reverb! If you’ve read some of my previous reviews you’ll know I really do have a soft spot for this kind of music… well actually I ADORE it. I often like to quote Andy Johnson from the project “Windsor Airlift” when I speak about instrumental music because it rings so true.
“The beautiful thing about instrumental music is that we aren’t telling the listener how to feel, or what to think. But rather we’re letting them conjure up in their minds their own vision of what this song could mean to them.”

These guys are so so so so so so so so SO worth seeing. Do it, do it now! They are playing in Glasgow TONIGHT and Inverness TOMORROW and then a few more dates back in England.

You can find all of their music and your dates on their Facebook:
https://www.facebook.com/eyrellew/

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