18 Jul 2017

Pop Crimes: Revisiting The Film Noir World Of Rowland S. Howard

"Rowland was Australia's most unique, gifted and uncompromising guitarist. He was also a good friend. He will be missed by many." - Nick Cave

The Birthday Party set the world alight between their formation at the end of the seventies and the mid-eighties. Here we had a band that had the raw, depraved toxicity of The Cramps, combined with the lethal onstage energetic output of The Stooges and the oblique gloom of Joy Division, but a band that did this without compromising their literary prowess. The Birthday Party's focal point was the central duo of one Nick Cave, singer, screecher, squawker, and Rowland S. Howard, a guitarist whose fractured, splintered playing was delivered with such venomous vigour that he was able to share the onstage limelight with Cave, something that miscellaneous Bad Seeds could not quite match up to (whether they tried to or not). 

17 Jul 2017

Raw Power: an interview with the almighty Bo Gritz

Bo Gritz are a noise-rock band like no other; a pummelling screech of industrial guitar noise, their sound is invasive and unignorable. Indeed, if you've caught them as the support for the likes of Ho99o9, HMLTD, Table Scraps and Taman Shud, you'll be fully aware they deliver so much noise with such an intensity that you simply can't help but be engulfed. Last week, I caught up with them for a quick chat.

14 Jul 2017

Another Li'l Mid-2017 Post: Our 16 favourite songs of 2017 so far...

I don't have the strength to write another introductory paragraph, but you know what this is. Read the title. You've seen them before. Unordered list of songs what are good. Read list. Listen songs. Go forth and prosper.

13 Jul 2017

2017: The Best Records Of This Here Year So Far

Salutations dear friends, the halfway point of this year means that our little blog is now three years old. A lot of things have happened since then, but with a world that - despite the rise of Corbyn's Labour Party - seems bleaker by the day, maybe it's best to focus on the strictly musical things. From the exciting crop of new bands emerging in the capital, to Nick Cave reaching the peak of his powers, and Europe seeming alive with the most exciting psych music we've heard in a while, there's lots to celebrate. Here is our - that is me, Cal, alongside other Vapour Trail writers' - favourite albums of the year so far. Due to the fact that I'm working a lot over Summer, I haven't had the time to do this earlier, or write out a fleshed out description for each album, but there's so much great records that you should go through 'em all one by one. Without further ado...

5 Jul 2017

Joshua Jones/Scarecrow Boat - Fresh Prince of Nowhere (Split EP review)

A collaboration between two Southampton artists, Fresh Prince of Nowhere is a split EP arriving hot off the press. Dreamt upon between tourmates Joshua Jones and Dominic James (of Soton emo troupe Scarecrow Boat), it's a mixture of Jones' own stream of consciousness spoken word (delivered in a thick Welsh accent) and the caustic, reflective acoustic songs of James, as well as the EP's best moment, which is the title track and a collaboration between the two.