Playing catch up here with a few of the CDs, new and old, that I hadn't managed to get around to reviewing. So in no particular order here we go.
Kings of Nuthin – Old Habits Die Hard (CD)
Evolution is a funny old thing. That relentless move forward to maintain relevance to your environment.
You can see it happening in music. If a band doesn't move forward and explore new sounds then they are as dead as the dinosaur.
All those stars of yesteryear stuck in the tar pits of where are they now.
Victims of not being able to keep relevant to the record buying public.
The exceptions are the bands who are the equivalent of the shark. They needn't continue adapting to a changing world as they're already at the top of the evolutionary tree.
They've found a style that sounded fresh yesterday, still sounds fresh today, and will undoubtedly manage to kick you in the balls on first listen decades down the line.
The Kings of Nuthin are one of those bands.
They sound like every drunken bar room brawl that has ever kicked off from here to eternity.
Wherever people will drink, carouse and party then these guys will be the soundtrack to those times.
This is actually how rhythm and blues should be played.
In fact fuck that. This is how music should be played. With passion, attitude and a sense of wild abandon.
There is a vibrancy to what they do. Something that sounds alive. It feels like hot blood thumping from your heart to the brain.
For all I know they sit for hours at a time crafting an exact sound, going over it again and again until like Brian Wilson they descend into lunacy to achieve what they perceive as perfection, but if so then you can't tell as the impression given is that they simply slipped their coats off, rolled up their sleeves, loosened their ties and cranked it out.
If you can't hear just how alive this album is then someone may as well slip a tag on your toe and slide you back into the freezer as you are beyond salvation.
(People like you records)
The Plimptons – 00s Nostalgia with The Plimptons (CD)
You described The Plimptons as the square peg that you try to force into the round hole?
Are they a punk band?
Well yes and no.
Do they play ska tinged pop punk?
They have been known to, but they're not a ska tinged pop punk band.
What sort of crowd do they attract? Is it indie kids, punks, wee guys in anoraks? Maybe the demographic could hint to what sort of band they are. So what's the crowd like?
Drunken. Usually drunken, very, very, drunken.......and loud.
I heard a song once called “Lonely Old Man” that sounded like young guys doing a stars in your eyes impression of the Pogues. Was that The Plimptons?
Okay. Now I'm confused.
I think that's the idea.
Are they any good though?
Yes. They are very good. In fact and you should buy the CD.
(16 Ohm Studio)
The Law – A measure of wealth (CD)
When I listen to this I can hear the bands record collection being played. Their influences are more so tattooed on their foreheads for all to see and hear rather than worn on their sleeves.
Nine times out of ten that's a complete turn off, but The Law buck the trend and transcend being simple plagiarists by unashamedly wallowing in the music they collectively love.
It's all there. Bass lines from The Who, a song that sounds like The Libertines, another one that could have come from an Embrace album. A bit of Oasis and a sprinkle of the Seahorses plus more, more and even more. Oh, and there's the Jam.
It's mod flavoured brit pop for the modern age, and I say that without a hint of sarcasm.
The reason that it works is because the band have an ear for a song and everything that is plundered from the past and remoulded for the present is of the highest quality.
It would be churlish to highlight the references to their influences as a negative point when I'm sitting hear grooving to the album.
Let's call it a keeper.
(Local Boy Records)