19 Jun 2016

PREMIERE | Jellyskin's frosty debut single Grey Glass Hat

Who are Jellyskin, you might ask if you've clicked this post on a whim wondering what kinda shenanigans it is we're previewing. Well, Jellyskin are a transcendental three piece from eeds who have just unveiled their debut single, Grey Glass Hat. Mixing undulating dream-pop tones, with forlorn vocals, they create a sound that perfectly encapsulates the feeling of a cold, winter morning (in the best way possible).


17 Jun 2016

Latitude Festival Announcement | New Comedy Names!

The next wave of acts for Latitude 2016's highly anticipated Comedy Arena has arrived! Check below for the full list of comedic genius' bringing their hilarious acts to Latitude 2016. (See acts in bold for Vapour Trail recommends)

16 Jun 2016

Declan's Hipster Hovel #8 | A Mike Patton Bonanza

You people are getting SPOILED today. Basically, when I started writing these entries, I had a little list of records that I owned to write about (along with my constant search for something underground and worthwhile). What I noticed right off the bat was the fact that a good five of those records were masterminded by Mike Patton. I’ve already written about one of those, the sumptuous Mondo Cane, but for repetition’s sake I’m going to write about three of them here. There’s more to cover (his Adult Themes For Voice, a guttural scream/throat experiment album, is SOMETHING), but these three cover very far-reaching aspects of his musicianship, and in sounding nothing like each other, work well together… You get me?

15 Jun 2016

Psyblings @ Dot To Dot Manchester (live review)

Psyblings are a lively Manchester based psych-rock band which is made up of Greg Dixon, Ellis Cullen, Dan Coleman, Jordan Lythgoe and Sam Bullock. Their sound is unavoidably and unapologetically noisy in its’ nature, and this was only further amplified by the fact that they were playing in the tiny upstairs bar of 57 Thomas Street in the heart of Manchester’s Northern Quarter.

12 Jun 2016

Lola Colt / Moonlight Mixing (single review)

Taken from their second LP Twist Through The Fire, Lola Colt's new single Moonlight Mixing is a pummelling example of psychedelic pop at its finest. It's upbeat, it's catchy, and it combines subtle organ stabs, rumbling bass parts and pretty soulful vocals to create something a kind of pop music with a dark mysticism. It's a direct, noisy number, and it toys with chaos and beauty so well that you can't help but fall for it.

11 Jun 2016

Minor Victories / Minor Victories (album review)

I hear the phrase "supergroup", I throw up in my mouth, I shiver a little, then eat some peanut butter on toast and let it all blow over. A cycle as old as time itself. Supergroups generally get a lot of attention because they have big enough names to overshadow the artistic output and lack of ideas. But one group bucking this trend, furthering their careers with a new musical direction is Minor Victories, whose self-titled debut is now out...

Sure, there are big names in the world of underground guitar music - huge even. Stuart Braithwaite of Mogwai, Rachel Goswell of Slowdive and Mojave 3, and Justin Lockey of Editors make up the band. But their debut stands out, as an autonomous sonic tapestry that works as an arrestingly beautiful work of art whether you're familiar with Come On Die Young and Pygmalion or not.

MUNCIE GIRLS: MEET THE ANGSTY PUNK TRIO

Round the back of a grim Brighton club, sit potentially the most exciting British punk band for a generation. They’re sheltering in a doorway trying not to breathe in too much of the rancid smell coming from the alley after the backdoor to the venue shut on us. “It beats sitting in the rain” shrugs guitarist Dean McMullen. Muncie Girls, who have been a playing together since they were in school, finally released their triumphant debut album From Caplan To Belsize back in March.

10 Jun 2016

The Stone Roses Second Coming Of The Year Reviewed - A Beautiful Thing?

Stone Roses singles are like buses; preferable only to a long walk in the rain. Last month saw the release of their first single in 20 something years, All For One, which is so bad it kinda hurts, so really, for their second song in however long - the 7 minute long Beautiful Thing - I had low hopes.

I will say something. Those Stone Roses have upped their game a bit from before, although the end result still leaves a bit to be desired. Beautiful Thing's main verses are every bit as bad as those in All For One, and again, it's left for Johnny Squire to salvage it with some guitar magic, which he does a fairly decent job of. The highlight of this song is every single second that doesn't feature Ian Brown's boring vocals - the Happy Mondays groove they have going on at about the 2:20 mark is nearly a patch on the real thing, and the Revolver-influenced guitar solo which fills out most the song's last three minutes is pretty good (if a tad OTT on the self indulgence), and a lot of the instrumentals capture what made the Roses pretty darn good in the first place; it's got a real groove to it, and is basically just pretty fun.  

James Blake / The Colour In Anything (album review)

The Colour in Anything is a refreshing return to the lucid tones of his debut album, departing from the harsher narrative style of its 2013 Mercury Prize-winning predecessor Overgrown.
As a self-professed JB (no, not Bieber) total fan boy, it’s been a struggle to review this album with a level head but this long-awaited and, among fans of Blake, hotly anticipated offering does not fail to impress. Unapologetically reminiscent of the London-based singer/songwriter/producer’s 2011 self-titled album, The Colour In Anything provides a beautifully heart breaking window into Blake’s soul. Announced to be “seventy percent done” in November 2014 and to be “released in about 5 months” it’s been a long and painful wait, with an almost complete lack of information following this until its release. Perhaps the sudden unannounced release of the album is a play on the original name of the album Radio Silence”, which is the name of the albums opener.

9 Jun 2016

Proto Idiot / For Dummies (album review)

There's nothing clever, sophisticated or intricate about Proto Idiot, but at the same time, I don't think there's supposed to be. I mean, just look at their band name. And the fact they've called their album For Dummies. And the fact that all their songs sound like they took longer to play than write. But really - you can't take those pretty sluggish criticisms as actual criticisms, because For Dummies and the snotty garage rock swashbucklers behind it is an example of garage rock at its most senselessly raw and enjoyable. And hey, for a Musketeerian three man gang, here to slam out brain-dead garage rock, they look the part with it, too.


8 Jun 2016

5 Reasons Hinds Should Be Your New Favourite Band

Now I'm not sure if I'm qualified to say this, but Hinds are probably one of the most exciting bands around right now. they have had a pretty rollercoaster year and a half, beginning 2015 by changing their name from Deers to Hinds because of legal reasons.  Then came their first world tour, their brill debut album, and yet another massive tour.  And now I'm about to give you five more reasons you are going to love them...

MELT DUNES: SOUTH COAST PSYCHEGEDDON

Melt Dunes are one of the best live acts in the country, and we've been obsessed a while. The Southampton four piece pull together doomy guitars, banshee-like stage prowess, and songs that flow together seamlessly to make their sets into one continuous freakout. All of this ensures that they've rose to prominence as one of our favourite bands in times of late.

At their Southampton support slot with Seattle's garage rock provocateurs Night Beats, we caught up with them for a chat on new releases, influences and future plans.

Eagulls Unveil New Video For 'Velvet'

Eagulls are one of our favourite bands. As a collective, and with their latest album Ullages, they moved their sound on to more textured pastures. One of the highlights of the album is Velvet, which now has an accompanying video. Inspired by lots of old gothic films, the whole thing has the feel of an eerie Bela Lugosi road movie - the perfect accompaniment, really, to a song that's basically a bad dream. Watch it below, and fall in love with Eagulls all over again.



Read our review of Ullages here

Words: Calum Cashin

7 Jun 2016

EXCLUSIVE PREMIERE & INTERVIEW | Watch Gun Shy's new video for 'With Us'

Gun Shy are the hottest band on the South Coast. Since putting out their debut EP, First Transmission, a visceral reinterpretation of textural shoegaze, they've played lots of shows to great acclaim across Southampton and beyond. Formed around Josh Bannister, former guitarist of punk band Milk Teeth, when he decided to pursue a more experimental kinda music, they're a noisy proposition that I can imagine almost everyone who follows this blog will want to sink their teeth into.

Alongside their shimmering guitar sound, their artistic vision stands them out. Take this - a video ya can only see on Vapour Trail - the Martin Wisniewska directed motion picture for fuzz-feedback nugget With Us. It's an unassailably cool video that rings of Dali and Méliès with its mysterious grayscale radiance. If you need any more proof they're a band you should be following adamantly, watch this...


6 Jun 2016

Common People Southampton Reviewed

Common People is a Bestival-run festival that takes over Southampton Common on the May bank holiday, and this year it delivered a quite frankly phenomenal lineup. Considering this is practically on my back doorstep, the Common played host to the likes of Duran Duran, Primal Scream, and hometown hero Craig David, and with weather that matched the triumph of the weekend, everything ran pretty brilliantly.

Kit Trigg / Thrasher (EP review)

Kit Trigg are a London based 2 piece with a weighty arsenal of heavy stoner rock and blues infused tunes. They are an all out assault, as if the musical embodiment of WW1 Trench warfare were a thing. And before we go any further… fuck Royal Blood.

Psycho Comedy / One (single review)

I don't really need to go into the reasons why the Merseyside is a great historical hotbed for psychedelia, that's been done re: The Beatles (as well as The Teardrop Explodes and Echo & the Bunnymen) before. But here's the future of Merseyside psychedelia. They're a five-piece called Psycho Comedy, and bring together elements of snotty, snarling garage with noisier and more tripped out psych rock. On Friday they released their Gil Norton (Doolittle, Ocean Rain) produced debut single, and it really flags them up as the psychedelic prophets of the future.

5 Jun 2016

How Fluffer Pit Parties Are Breathing New Life Into London's Music Scene

A Fluffer Pit Party is like sealing a pact with your sweat instead of swapping spit. Once your bag’s been security searched, your ticket’s been sharpied on your hand, and you’ve stepped through the threshold, there won’t be a return (well, until at least 2am). No backing out.

Thomas Cohen / Bloom Forever (album review)

On his debut album Bloom Forever, Thomas Cohen actualises the cliche of turning pain into beauty in a way that is almost unparalleled. Aged only 23, the former S.C.U.M frontman became the widow of Peaches Geldof, after discovering his wife (whom he had two children with) dead of a heroin overdose. This is a solo debut unlike any other, and the reason it's taken me over a month of this record being out to finally be able to sit down and review it is because it's such an agonisingly honest way of dealing with unimaginable pain that I didn't want to rush into trying to write about the record. Bloom Forever is a powerful, graphic, mature, and above all, beautiful way of turning almost unimaginable pain into staggeringly poignant art.

"Why weren’t her eyes covered and closed?" Cohen asks on Country Home, the song that deals with Peaches' death most explicitly. The lyrics are brutal, literal, and don't really leave room for any interpretation other than the body of someone the artist loved "turned cold". It's just such an instant, powerful track, complemented by a haunting echo and instrumentation that shifts emphasis onto Cohen's powerful vocals.

4 Jun 2016

Car Seat Headrest / Teens of Denial (album review)

Car seat headrest are a success of the digital music ecosystem, cultivated in the D.I.Y habitat bandcamp, who seem to have found their niche in their latest album Teens Of Denial. It is their second album on Matador records and their best work to date. Will Toldeo has already released a hefty eleven albums available for free on bandcamp, but he described Teens as a “swinging debut” and it certainty lives up to that description.  It is the first album recorded with a real band, which he reportedly found on Craigslist. But the line up does not thrown together, the album is instrumentally wonderful. Lyrically, it is everything. It encompasses trainers, beer, police and existential despair.

Fill in the blank is an earworm, and Toldeo's voice is showcased as opposed to blanketed, as in earlier music, which was recorded in the back seat of Toldeo's car for privacy. This continues throughout Teens which makes the album more accessible.

Declan's Hipster Hovel #7 | Twa Toots - Don't Play A Rainy Night In Georgia

Belle and Sebastian once said; “be popular, play pop, and you will win my love”. It is with this adage in mind that I bring to you "Twa Toots”, an unfortunately named but nevertheless excellent pop band from the 80’s, who trundled out a Peel Session, some 7” singles, an EP, and later a compilation called Don’t Send Me Flowers. It’s their 1986 EP Please Don’t Play a Rainy Night In Georgia (which contains two of the Peel cuts) I’ll be discussing here, but really any song by them is valid, since, given their tiny discography, they didn’t really have the chance to put out any bad cuts.

3 Jun 2016

REDEMPTION SONG: GABRIEL BRUCE

2016 is the year of Gabriel Bruce's comeback, his redemption. After a quiet spell, brought on by an accident, many thought that the gothic crooner and self-styled 'disco Leonard Cohen' might never play music again. However, two years on from said accident, he's returned with a new album, Come All Sufferers. A modern day gospel album for those that have been dealt a rough hand, Bruce's sophomore album is a true masterpiece. Because we're so adoring of Gabriel Bruce, we caught up with him to find out what a song called Jesus Drag Queen might be about, what his favourite lyrics are, and whether Come All Sufferers really is a gospel record.

Spring King @ Dot To Dot Manchester (live review)


Spring King are a Manchester 4 piece consisting of Tarek Musa, Peter Darlington, James Green and Andy Morton – having originally been a solo project of Tarek’s. With Dot to Dot having kicked off at around 4pm, Spring King were one of the last bands to play that day with a start time of 12.15am, meaning it was a late one (which was even further delayed by some technical difficulties). Despite this, the enthusiasm of the band and the crowd was unmissable throughout the set. This is impressive when you consider the fact that the Central Methodist had a strict no alcohol policy, and had become an 18+ venue for the bands set - inevitably meaning many potential fans were unable to attend.

2 Jun 2016

Thomas Cohen @ Gullivers (live review)

Native Kings were a somewhat unusual choice as first support for Thomas Cohen, having stepped in to replace Blueprint Blue who had originally been set to play, and who had been the opening support for Cohen's previous tour dates. The Liverpool alt rock trio's Cameron Warren provided vocals and repetitive guitar, supported by David Knowles on bass and Scott Harold on drums. Closing with their latest single The Sound of Victory, their sound was evocative of a less polished You Me At Six circa 2010. Following on from Native Kings was local band Blooms, playing songs such as Waves and their upcoming single Porcelain. The highlight of their set had to be the atmospheric and dreamy shoegaze-esque guitar echoes which were consistent throughout, this in combination with Matthew Adams' vocals (left untouched by reverb, which you couldn't be blamed for expecting) created an interesting sound which was genuinely enjoyable.