Already Heard
FESTIVAL PREVIEW: HIT THE DECK 2014 - 10 MUST-SEE BANDS
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.
FIVES: MUST BUY RECORD STORE DAY 2014 RELEASES
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.
INTERVIEW: THE MENZINGERS
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.
ALREADY HEARD RECOMMENDS: NEW CITY KINGS
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.
VERSUS: ALKALINE TRIO - 'FROM HERE TO INFIRMARY' VS. 'MAYBE I'LL
CATCH FIRE'

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.
POP-PUNK A&R: BOSTON MANOR
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.
ALREADY HEARD RECOMMENDS: EMPLOYED TO SERVE
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.
ALREADY HEARD TOUR TALES: HORNETS - MARCH 2014 UK TOUR
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.
EXCLUSIVE EP STREAM: WALLEATER - WALLEATER
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.
INDUSTRY INSIGHT: LEWIS JOHNS (PRODUCER)
In the first edition of our new "Industry Insight" feature, we talk to producer Lewis Johns
to find out his beginnings, his recent work with Funeral For A Friend, and Southampton's
Ranch Production House.


Album Review: Salem Rages - Aspects of the Deepest Gloom

Think Joy Division, think Misfits, think AFI sometime around the year 2000. In many ways this review could begin and end with that sentence. If you’re down with those bands, you’ll likely be down with Salem Rages. If you’re not, you likely won’t. Of course there’s more to it than a simple ‘FFO:’ list. For a start ‘Aspects of the Deepest Gloom’ isn’t as untouchable as those masters. It’s an excellent debut though. Dark and theatrical – recorded in Yorkshire because that’s the last place in England to see a woman burned as a witch. Recorded in a storm. It reeks of showmanship but remains organic, as if grown from the charred earth beneath the stake.

Following instrumental introduction ‘1692’ (the year of the Salem Witch Trials, of course), Salem Rages tears through next half hour in style. Starting strong but growing as the record moves on. ‘B.A.T.S.’ ( “Burn at the stake!” ) is excellent. Following track ‘New Grave’ has a creepy piano intro before combusting into more gloom punk magic. Earlier, ‘Thirteen Times’ (these song names should be telling you what to expect of this record) could be Joy Division covering The Cure. Penultimate track, ‘Fall Of Greatness’ is top pick though. Featuring some Davey Havok-esque soaring vocals this track nails down the band’s fantastic sound.

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Peasant’s King Set to Release Double EP

Pontypridd, Wales alt-rockers Peasant’s King have announced they will release their ‘Kingdom’ and ‘Four Walls Are Home’ EP’s as a bundle on May 12th through Visible Noise.

Studio Report: Colt 45 - The Tide Is Turning (Week Two)

Cumbria punk trio Colt 45 are back with the second and final part of their "Studio Report" feature. The band have been working with producer Romesh Dodangoda on their debut full-length, which is set to be released through Visible Noise in May.

Week two sees the band working ahead of schedule and finishing off 'The Tide Is Turning' before they begin a run of UK dates.

If you’re interested in setting up a future “Studio Report” feature, please contact Sean Reid.

Week 2
Half-way point and we’re ahead of schedule, with all drums, bass and a bunch of guitars tracked. We ventured for a night out in Cardiff with Romesh and his good friends from the Kids In Glass Houses camp and went to see what the Welsh capital had for us, which soon transpired was a hellish one-way traffic system and nowhere to park! We eventually made it round a few pubs and clubs which was a good way to relax after a few hectic days in the studio, and to hang out with Romesh outside of the sessions was a nice change. We then spent our day off (Sunday) by going for a drive to Porthcawl on the South Wales coast to revisit my youth (many a teenage summer was spent here with my Dad), and we enjoyed walking along the angry sea front and stopping to take some photos. All refreshed and relaxed we headed back in to the studio bright eyed and bushy tailed for week 2….

Day 6
A big coffee fix was needed all round this morning following our night out with Romesh and other than the sound of guitars being tracked, the control room was silent. Plenty to do however, and Neil bashed on with tracking lots of guitar layers whilst Gareth and I started looking at extra bits and pieces – harmonies, acoustic parts, post-production ideas. By the end of the day we had nearly all the guitar tracks completed, not bad at all. Now home to watch Metallica: Some Kind of Monster, what a hoot, was that serious?!

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Studio Report: Colt 45 - The Tide Is Turning (Week One)

Today we’re launching a new feature called "Studio Report". As you might of guessed, the feature sees us checking in with a band who are currently in the studio working on new material.

To launch the feature Cumbria punk trio Colt 45 have offered to give us a day-by-day account of their first week recording their debut full-length. They are currently recording with Romesh Dodangoda who has previously produced for the likes of Funeral For A Friend, Bullet For My Valentine, Kids In Glass Houses, The Blackout, and many others.

Colt 45's debut LP will be titled 'The Tide Is Turning' and will be released in May through Visible Noise. As we join the band for week one of their "Studio Report", we learn the trio and Romesh quickly get to work on putting the record together.

If you’re interested in setting up a future "Studio Report" feature, please contact Sean Reid.

Week 1
We’ve been looking forward to returning to Cardiff to work with Romesh for months. Our previous visits have been amazing, if brief, and we were so pleased with the results heard on our debut EP releases (re-issued as 'Coughing Up Confessions' last year on Visible Noise). So he was the obvious choice when it came to deciding who was going to produce our debut album proper for the label. 'The Tide Is Turning' is released in May, and approaching the project with so much more time than we’re used to has helped us relax and get the best out of ourselves and the songs. Romesh knows how we work, and we know how he works, it gels, and the sessions so far have been really enjoyable and laid back as a result. We can’t wait for people to hear it! Here’s what’s been going down so far…

Day 1
The drive from Cumbria to South Wales is a pretty long one, we’ve done it many times, but it was nice to do it in half-reasonable conditions for a change. Despite all the flooding, we made it down fairly quickly in Fritz (our van), and got acquainted with our new home for the fortnight – a really nice ground floor flat just outside Cardiff near the sea. It’s even got different colour LED lights in the hallway for Gareth to do his yoga on in the mornings. All settled in, down to business.

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Salem Rages Confirm Debut Album Release (‘Aspects Of The Deepest Gloom’)

Gloom-Punk protégées Salem Rages are set to release their debut album, 'Aspects Of The Deepest Gloom' through Visible Noise in April.

1. 1692
2. One For Sorrow
3. Thirteen Times
4. Death Tides
5. Black_White II
6. Smokescreen Afterlife
7. 1985
8. Shaddow Of A Rat
9. B.A.T.S
10. New Grave
11. Fall Of Greatness
12. Purging Of The Flowers

Visible Noise Sign Peasant’s King

Pontypridd, Wales alt-rockers Peasant’s King have signed to Visible Noise.

The quintet are currently working on new music to be released later this year. In the meantime, the bands video for 'Antidotes' can be viewed by clicking read more.

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Colt 45 Reveal Debut Album Title

Colt 45 have revealed their debut album will be titled 'The Tide Is Turning' and is set to be released in May through Visible Noise.

The band made the following comment about the record:

“‘The Tide is Turning’ offers a pretty good insight into our collective mind-set just now - both musically and in terms of our ambition for the future.

The last few years have been a hard slog of gigging all over the UK and self-releasing EP’s to build our profile and reputation, whilst holding down full time jobs and juggling the rest of our lives to make COLT 45 our priority. We’re now lucky to enjoy the support of Visible Noise and this has enabled us to enter 2014 with a fantastic opportunity to really make our mark. That’s what we want to do with this album; we believe in the new songs and feel as though a change is on the horizon - one that will hopefully enable us to take COLT 45 to new heights. That’s why ‘The Tide is Turning’ stood out as THE lyric from the album which really sums up the mood in camp just now….we can’t wait to get started and for you everyone to hear it!”

The album is currently being recorded and the trio are working with producer Romesh Dodangoda.

Colt 45 will follow up the recording of the album with a UK tour next month alongside Electric River and The Hostiles.

March
01 London – The Garage w/ Electric River
07 Gateshead - Black Bull w/ Electric River
08 Carlisle - Sands Centre w/ Electric River
11 Glasgow - Bar Bloc w/ The Hostiles
15 Lancaster - Yorkshire House
21 Lancaster - Yorkshire House w/ The Hostiles
22 London - New Cross Inn w/ The Hostiles
23 Manchester - Gullivers w/ The Hostiles
April
10 Kendal - Bootleggers
18 Bolton - Alma Rooms
24 Consett - Club That Rocks

Colt 45 Set To Record New Album

Colt 45 are set to record their debut album next month with producer Romesh Dodangoda (Kids In Glass Houses, Twin Atlantic, Funeral For A Friend).

The band made the following comment about the record:

“The new songs expand on theme’s we’ve covered before, but come from a more optimistic point of view - we’re still pissed off, but nowadays we can see a little more light at the end of the tunnel…

Having Romesh back on board is amazing. He really understands our music and always gets the best out of us. 2014 should be a very exciting year - we can’t wait to get this album released and get back on the road playing as many shows as possible.”

Colt 45's debut album is set to be released in May through Visible Noise.

Colt 45 Posts Acoustic ‘I’m Drowning, Not Waving’ Video

Colt 45 have posted an acoustic session video of 'I'm Drowning, Not Waving' from Gibson Studios London.

The video can be viewed by clicking read more and the track appears on the bands latest album, 'Coughing Up Confessions' which is out now on Visible Noise.

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Album Review: COLT 45 - Coughing Up Confessions

When your influences include Alkaline Trio, At The Drive, The Gaslight Anthem, Glassjaw and Brand New you know that a band has a repertoire of influences that when combined will create something special and COLT 45 do just that.

Playing a mixture of punk infused alt-rock COLT 45 could be lumbered with a whole myriad of similar bands who could simply play linear rock hits that have no real guts to them but this album feels more focused and raw which sets it apart.

‘Coughing Up Confessions’ is a re-release of their last two EPs into the form of a full release, which showcases the journey that the band has taken in regards to their evolution. I wish more bands would do this as it shows they’re proud of their beginnings and the direction which their band has taken.

For the most part the songs are well moulded to create memorable passages, this is aided with guitar hooks, riffs and warming vocals but what really pushes this album forward is the drums. The punk edge really shows in the drumming, disco beats, rolls and over the top fills are scattered throughout the whole of ‘Coughing Up Confessions’ and adds a fun factor and gives the songs an extra layer of depth.

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Album Review: Salem Rages - Splinters

It seems fitting that Liverpool 4-piece and gloom punks Salem Rages release 'Splinters' - a compilation of self-released EPs the week after Halloween. With their recent signing to Visible Noise, and an album due for release next year, it’s a nice nod to their roots, with only one new track it’s a good way of looking back before moving forward. There’s a sense that there’s a real love of the occult and of the b-movie horrors that make film buffs happy at this time of the year in their music. yeah, things are a little bit cheesy and schlocky, but that’s really a thing that makes music like this work. There’s quite clearly a love of old school punk rock, and of bands like the Misfits, AFI, The Independents, and of the simplicity of 70s punk like The Cramps with some dashes of over dramatics.

The thing that Salem Rages have done with this cocktail is to try and strip it to the essentials and make it their own. There are still a lot of nods to their inspirations throughout. There’s a strong sense on tracks like 'Black Rain Falls', 'The 7th Night' and 'Skulldaggery' that Danzig era Misfits are a strong influence. While the vocals of singer Roman Remains aren’t quite there yet, the stories of tortured loves and the macabre are fairly well realised. The organ/keyboards added over the parts in 'The 7th Night' really affect that mood, with an air of Hammer horror, you could imagine Vincent Price in costume with that organ part playing in the background. The tolling bell in 'Territorial' is pulled from a gothic horror film as well, and against the marching rhythm that starts the song, the effect is pretty convincing.

There’s also a sense of drama with tracks like opener 'Curtain Fall', which feels like a hat tip to older AFI (of the 'Black Sails in the Sunset' era), which then doubles back into a driving, toe-tapping drum and guitar part, with a simple chorus with a call to arms of “crucify” being yelled. This is more straight down the line of punk rock, and I really enjoy it. 'Casket' is similarly stripped down Cramps-sounding punk, but that gothic edge remains while talking about death and “seasons missed”. 'Black/White' and 'Skulldaggery' both feel less overtly macabre, and more shouty angular punk, with a bif of a ramones and New York punk influence evident

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Warner Music and ADA Distribution Launch ‘Metal Matters’ Independent Record Store Campaign

Warner Music and ADA Distribution have launched a new campaign called Metal Matters which sees them working a range of rock and metal labels; UNFD, UDR, Eleven Seven Music, Earache, Visible Noise, Relapse, Roadrunner, Rise, and Listenable.

Metal Matters offers discounts on a range of titles to independent record stores throughout the UK.

As an added bonus, anyone picking up any of the records in the campaign will receive a free sampler (subject to availability.)

1. Motorhead – Heartbreaker
2. Five Finger Death Punch – Battle Born
3. Trivium – Brave This Storm
4. Red Fang – Blood Like Cream
5. True Widow – hw:r
6. The Charm The Fury – Carte Blanche
7. The Temperance Movement – Midnight Black
8. 77 – Down And Dirty
9. Dead Letter Circus – Lodestar
10. Sleeping With Sirens – Alone
11. Dangerkids – Hostage
12. The Browning – Fifth Kind
13. The Devil Wears Prada – Martyrs
14. Northlane – Quantum Flux
15. We Butter The Bread With Butter – Mein Brille
16. Escape The Fate – One For The Money
17. Scar The Martyr – Blood Host
18. Papa Roach – Silence Is The Enemy
10. Saxon – The Eagle Has Landed
20. Annihilator – Deadlock

A full list of participating record stores can be found at metal-matters.com and a Spotify playlist can be found here.

Colt 45 Join Visible Noise and Announce Double EP Re-Release

imageCumbria alt/punk band Colt 45 have joined Visible Noise. The trio are set to re-release their 'Chasing Yesterday and 'Inside The Triangle' EP’s together on November 4th. The release will be titled 'Coughing Up Confessions'.

1. Think For Yourself – Question Authority
2. Everybody Will Let You Down
3. Happiness Is A Dying Art
4. I’m Drowning Not Waving
5. Brick Wall
6. Chasing Yesterday
7. Shit Happens
8. In These Dreams (I’ll Live And Die)
9. These Unspoken Arguments
10. Six Months In Chino

The video for 'Happiness Is A Dying Art' can be viewed after the jump.

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Salem Rages Join Visible Noise; ‘Splinters’ EP Re-Release Planned

imageGloom punk/hardcore band Salem Rages have joined Visible Noise and will digitally re-release their EP trilogy, 'Splinters'on 4th November.

1. The Curtain Fall
2. The 7th Night
3. Territorial
4. Black Rain Falls
5. Our Halloween
6. Casket
7. Black/White
8. Skulldaggery
9. Love Is Alive

The Dead Formats Announce ‘At Sixes and Sevens’ Album Launch Show + Free Song Download

The Dead Formats have announced an album launch show which will take place at the Camden Barfly, London on September 11th.

The album is entitled ’At Sixes and Sevens’ and is released on September 10th via Visible Noise.

A free song, 'Just What The Doctor Ordered' can be streamed by clicking read more and downloaded from TheDeadFormats.com.

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