As the festival season rolls on, this weekend the Hit The Deck Festival returns for its fourth outing. As always with over 40 bands playing across 6 stages, the Already Heard team has picked out 10 must-see bands to see at this weekend’s festival.
This Saturday the 2014 edition of Record Store Day takes place. With wealth of rare
releases to buy, Already Heard and Jon Tolley of Banquet Records have picked out 5 must by RSD 2014 releases.
Next week Philadelphia indie punks The Menzingers release, 'Rented World,' one of the
highly anticipated records of 2014 so far. In parts, it picks up where 2012's 'On The
Impossible Past' left off but it also shows the bands growth as songwriters and musicians. We recently spoke to Greg Barnett to discuss the album, the pressure of following up 'On The Impossible Past', their forthcoming London show and the Grozerock Festival.
Despite only forming last year, Essex rockers New City Kings have already gathered plenty of attention from their debut EP - 'Change.' Their radio-friendly rock sound that has seen them compared to a range of bands; Foo Fighters, Deaf Havana, and The Gaslight Anthem.
Already Heard spoke to Mark Kovic to find out more about New City Kings.
With their return to the UK imminent, the latest edition of "Versus" sees us putting the
focus on Alkaline Trio. Self-confessed Trio MEGA fan Jay Sullivan tells us why 'From
Here to Infirmary' is the band’s finest work. Whilst Alex Phelan explains how 'Maybe
I'll Catch Fire' is a superb example of musical catharsis.
12 months from releasing their debut EP, we speak to Blackpool pop-punk/emo
quintet Boston Manor to discuss their influences, achievements so far and thoughts on their contemporaries.
With their latest EP 'Change Nothing, Regret Everything.', Woking five-piece Employed
To Serve have produced 12 minutes of frantic, unrelenting hardcore that finds the band somewhere between The Dillinger Escape Plan and The Chariot. We spoke to Justine from the band to find out how the band has transitioned from a duo to a quintet and she discussed
being part of the Holy Roar! roster, they chaotic yet contained live shows and more.
In the latest edition of our "Tour Tales" feature, Irish doom-punk band Hornets talk us
through their recent UK tour where they played 8 shows in 7 days.
Leeds-based four-piece Walleater are set to digitally release their debut self titled EP next Monday (14th April) through Close To Home Records. We've got the exclusive first play
right here on Already Heard.
Having never heard of these guys, I decided to do some research about them before listening to the album. With the genre described as ‘Punk/Ska’, I got the album on straight away and gave it a good listen.
The first thing I thought was that there really isn’t much of a ska vibe to the music - sure, there’s a trumpet - but I wasn’t hearing the ‘ska’. I’m not saying I was disappointed, because they genuinely are a really great band, I was just hearing something different to what I was expecting. Although it is pretty evident of the ska influence, I would class them more of a heavier pop-punk band, but pulling it off more effectively than the hordes of bands trying to break through in the genre.
The album starts off with ‘Dust On The Hourglass’, a song with pop-punk at its core, hints of Four Year Strong and A Day to Remember, but without the screaming. A great song; you will definitely find yourself singing along. The trumpets come in and you can hear the ska influence, but you’ll find yourself wondering whether it’s still an element strong enough to call it ska, although it definitely gives the music a great edge. Chanted vocal breaks - you can’t go wrong when it’s done right - and this song has it down.
The end of 'Dust On The Hourglass' has an audio clip, almost an introduction to the next track, which I can’t help but think would work great as an introduction to the album, with ‘I Want You To Hit Me As Hard As You Can 1’ as the opening track; it has the definite ska vibe to it. These are evidently talented musicians – the drummer’s prowess is at the forefront throughout most of the music – and with the guitar work and singing all working great together, it’s no wonder this album has been on repeat, these guys have something good, and they’re doing everything right.
'Live Like Mitch' is a great track too, with ska shining through. Whoever this ‘Mitch’ guy is, he sounds like a cool dude. As the album continues the ska influence is more and more evident. As in all ska music, you can’t help but enjoy listening to it, it sounds too happy. I would love to see this band live; I have no doubt they’d be bloody good.
'Hellbound And Helpless'- a track with a chorus that will have you singing along to, an anthem that would be a great crowd pleaser. It’s also another track that shows the true potential of the drummer, still hearing that break through to the forefront of the tracks. It’s refreshing to be impressed by a member of a band who doesn’t shove their talent in your face. If this band weren’t so great I’d definitely wonder why he wasn’t doing something else to show off his skills. You could say the same for the guitarist too.
'If I Can't Smoke Or Swear, I'm Fucked' has a blistering guitar solo that blows my ears away every time I hear it. I’m a guitarist myself, so whenever I listen to music guitarists’ styles and techniques are what I listen for, and from the start it was pretty evident this guy could play some great riffs, but this solo… just WOW. It seems a little self indulgent, but in respect to the track - the fast paced essence of it- the solo fits perfectly and doesn’t take anything away from the song at all, quite the opposite in fact.
'Dead End' is another track with a great hook, catchy chorus style outtro, written to get the chorus sang back to them. Mission accomplished. And once again, in 'Do What You Love…'. These guys can write great hooks.
Straight into the next track, ‘…And Fuck The Rest’, an intro to 'Delta. Oscar. Whiskey. November.', are heavily ska sounding. I take back my first assumptions - They’ve got the ska, they’ve got the pop-punk, and they’ve fused them together perfectly.
And finally onto the last track of this album, ‘The Ghost That Haunted Me’. I am honestly sad there are no more songs. It’s a short track in respect to the others, but a great way to end the album.
To summarise, my first apprehensions of the lack of ska influence were quickly quashed. The fusion of harder pop-punk and ska works really well, and has a refreshing approach to an over-crowded scene. I’ll be sure to keep an eye on these guys, and will definitely look out for dates of them touring here.
'You Can't Hide The Sun' by We Are The Union is out now on Paper And Plastick.
Words by Callum McPhee.