Go-Zilla – Self Titled

Robot dinosaurs.  They’re great; arguably they should be the mark of quality for any good album.  This bodes well for Go-Zilla.  Their debut album not only has a robot dinosaur on the front but eleven diverse and brain hijacking tracks. Having played established venues such as the Tonbridge Wells Forum interest around Go-Zilla is starting to swarm like … people running from a robot dinosaur.

Go-Zilla introduce themselves with an ominous and pounding instrumental opening.  This reveals Go-Zilla’s inspired fusion of  drums and guitars alongside synths and electronic vibes.  Following straight out of this audio entrance music is the first contender, Camden Queen.  Camden Queen maintains the same level of energy and intensity as it storms out your speakers and down your brain holes.  Camden Queen starts off with an aggressive riff and urgent drumming before descending into driving synths.  Go-Zilla blur the lines between these two worlds skillfully as Camden Queen ends in a flurry of charged synth lines and guitars.

Go-Zilla, Self Titled

Vocals provide complete the tri-force of elements that make Go-Zilla’s sound so compelling.  They switch from melodic deliveries to rapping and spoken word with ease and even encompass female vocalists.  This creative approach to vocals is shown in Our Tomorrow. A triumphant and determined track, Our Tomorrow gives a platform for nearly all of the above complete with fitting moments of vocal production.  Chasing Shadows is another example of Go-Zilla’s vocal talents.  A moody electronic opening becomes a striking and brain hooking synth line.  Reflective and melodic vocals share the story with spoken word to help create a soulful and captivating track.  They give life to honest lyrics which are easy to relate to, something true across the album.

Go-Zilla cover a range of moods across the album, covering tracks such as the somber sounds of the stripped back Don’t Wait For Me to the demanding nature of Throwdown.  Throwdown features dominant guitars and synths that will make you bristle with energy, and think of pirates (you don’t believe me now I know but wait til it hits your ears).  This dominant nature peaks with tracks such as Get On The Dancefloor.  A statement of Go-Zilla’s live intent Get On The Dancefloor is laced with energy and intention.  The formula is completed by a direct and infectious chorus.

Go-Zilla Live

A strong album throughout, Go-Zilla have created some tracks that shine brighter than most.  The first of these is Keep Breathing.  Keep Breathing is a stripped back and bare track that shows Go-Zilla using guitars and synths in a more subdued and thoughtful way.  The second is the albums closer Wolfpack.  From the first second this is the sonic fusion at its best.  Wolfpack begins with a floor filling EDM influenced synth line which hijacks your ears instantly before entering the dubby and driving chorus.  The vocals are again diverse as a distinctive female vocal turns into melodic and spoken word deliveries.

This is a highly accomplished album using the combination of sounds to explore a variety of soundscapes.  A strong live band, Go-Zilla are a band you should experience .  A creative and versatile album Self Titled is entirely free.  Get it.  Find links to the album below alongside related posts and a video at the bottom of the page.

Go-Zilla on Facebook / Album Download

Live Photography from GIGgle Pics

David Horn

Track Listing:

  1. Go-Zilla (Intro)
  2. Camden Queen
  3. Our Tomorrow
  4. Get On The Dancefloor
  5. Throwdown
  6. Chasing Shadows
  7. What Would You Give
  8. Don’t Wait For Me
  9. Keep Breathing
  10. The Rise
  11. Wolfpack

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25/03/2013: Coco and the Butterfields – Low/Encore

cocoandthebutterfileds

Fip Fok.  A genre you might not be aware of but one you need to wrap your ears around quick.  Coco and the Butterfields are the Canterbury based band that created this genre, and as well as having a live E.P available they’ve just launched their shiny new website.

Available from the site are three free downloads.  This weeks free download is the first of these, a fusion of Flo Rida’s Low and Jay Z’s Encore, brought together by Coco and the Butterfields’ unque sound.  Sailing in on a violin Low/Encore anchors in your head instantly.  Driven by a double bass, guitar and bango Coco and the Butterfields even have a beat boxer.  A genius combination already; the rapping completes this fast paced and joyful mash-up of Low/Encore alongside the inventive beat boxing.  You won’t have heard anything like this anywhere else today.

Your ears need this inside them.  Get your free download of Low/Encore by Coco and the Butterfields here.  Also find a cover of Just a Dream by Nelly and Feeling Good by Nina Simone.  They’re only available for a limited time however so get them quick.

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CzechMate – Pipe Bombs

CzechMate, Pipe Bombs, E.P

With interests that include washing lines and basements it will come as no surprize that CzechMate create exciting and raw guitar music.  Fuzzed up guitars and gritty brit pop vocals slide down your ears easier than an energetic front man on a slippery stage.  CzechMate are a five piece from Sittingbourne, though like all the most interesting things they are currently scattered across the country.

As you press play on CzechMate’s E.P Pipe Bombs it soon becomes obvious why the band have play venues such as The 100 Club.  The E.P opener is Bus.  A charged indie riff instantly captures your attention and builds anticipation.  As drums and then punky brit pop vocals come in the anticipation becomes entirely verified.  A hooky riff and fast pace drag you along.  A powerful bass solo only helps to keep your ears trained in.  Ultimately Bus not only sounds exciting and urgent, but reminds you why the back of the bus is the only place to sit.

The sense of style and swagger established by CzechMate only increases as the Pipe Bombs E.P continues with Ties and Lies as CzechMate take a swing at business culture.  Short and punchy, Ties and Lies delivers it’s swing with a sharp riff, vocal harmonies and a chorus the whole band pitch in on.  The drums take the stage in With Me.  Fiery guitars help a drum build up to drop into another track that drips with so much indie swagger that it probably leaves a puddle, just a little heads up for you.  Driven by strong drumming With Me shows a more desperate side to CzechMate as the track begs ‘Just be with me/The one for me’.  Tonight ends the Pipe Bombs E.P on a similarly emotional tone.  A slow and inviting riff reminiscent of Modest Mouse starts Tonight, setting the tone for the track.  Warm drumming and vocals intoned with care cruise out your speakers and show CzechMate in a new light.  Tonight represents a new level of relaxation from CzechMate, but they still manage to sneak in a cheeky guitar solo.

The 100 Club, Live, CzechMate

At four tracks long the Pipe Bombs E.P is too short and will leave you wanting more.  All the elements of CzechMate come together perfectly to make a highly listenable and accomplished E.P.  It’s no one wonder Bus was picked up by BBC Introducing Kent whilst With Me has been played by GU2 Radio and ourselves.  All that’s left is for you to check it out.  Find a link to CzechMate’s music with two demo tracks up for free download and related posts below.

CzechMate on Facebook

CzechMate’s Music

David Horn

Track Listing:

  1. Bus
  2. Ties and Lies
  3. With Me
  4. Tonight

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The Banned Reviews Takeover 10/03/13

Another great night of music!  Bands from the UK, Canada and America fell out your speakers into your ears!  There was even a twenty minute portion of Pawse’s most recent DJ set!  Our ears are still feeling happy!  Check out tonight’s show for more great Kent and underground music!  Listen anytime for independent music here.

Track Listing:

Artemis Redeemer – Something More / On Facebook

Voodoo Brother – Still Water / On Facebook

Third Place Victory – One Year Wasting / On Facebook

The Gang – Mania / On Facebook

High Tide – Home / On Facebook

Craig Sheridan – Nitewish / On Facebook

The Zolas – Escape Artist / On Facebook

Escape the Ocean – One Sided Dice / On Facebook

Insult – Young and Reckless / On Facebook

Insult – Our Money Your War

Generation Graveyard – The Empty / On Facebook

Go-Zilla – Throwdown /On Facebook

Pawse – Live at Wooly’s 03-02-2013 / On Facebook

Much love,

Banned Reviews

Social Media in Music

Social media has changed all aspects of life.  Whether you’re attempting to bring down a Middle Eastern Government or plugging your favourite band, social and digital media are probably involved.

I Like

Digital developments in music have had mixed results.  If you’re a multi-national label or distributor you’ll probably curse the day someone decided it would be awesome to share files.  File sharing in itself isn’t inherently a bad thing, unless it’s the latest album by [insert teenage sensation here] which has been leaked.  Conversely for small independent labels and unsigned bands, social and digital tools are essential.  Whether its Facebook, Twitter or Bandcamp to name but a few there has never been a better way to reach and target your audience, and to raise awareness of your music.  Facebook alone has 1.6 billion monthly users. Platforms such as Bandcamp gives musicians and labels the opportunity to distribute music for free, for whatever the user deems fit or at a cost.  These changes the way the music industry operates drastically; it takes away power from multi-national bodies by allowing small labels or bands the chance to do much of what these offered themselves.  Even iTunes is open to the submission of music from artists of any level.

There are examples of the positive impact these developments have for independent labels and bands across the world.  One such example can be found within the Chicago music scene and is exemplified by individuals such as Keeley Carson.  Keeley has worked at two independent labels in the city, using social media and other digital tools for different purposes at each.

Victory RecordsWorking first at Victory Records Keeley used Twitter, Facebook and blog accounts to promote customer awareness of the label’s artists and music.  In addition to liaising with businesses and retailers this provided an effective method of boosting brand awareness   Victory Records has worked with bands such as Between the Buried and Me, Hawthorne Heights, Silverstein, Atreyu, Taproot and Funeral for a Friend.

Invisible RecordsLater working with Martin Atkins at Invisible Records Keeley used online marketing in a more direct way.  As Events and Marketing Assistant Keeley utilised social media to help deliver PR and promotional material to the label’s target audience regarding live events and tour bookings.  The social presence managed by Keeley was important in Invisible Records and the TourSmart brand’s increase in popularity.

Every new device – from toasters to phones – incorporates digital and social media.  The power of these will only grow, increasing the potential for labels and bands to maximize social media to reach more and more people.  Larger labels need to adapt or face challenges in the near future.

Victory Records on Facebook

Invisible Records on Facebook

Keeley Carson on LinkedIn

David Horn

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IRIS – Out of Fiction

Tour Dates

IRIS are reaching the end of their February tour.  The tour has seen them play venues across the country, supporting their E.P Out of Fiction as well as new material.  Out of Fiction is happily very real and will do all kinds of nice things to your inner jelly.  Signed to Engineer Records anyone that’s seen IRIS live will have seen the strength of their songs, professionalism and performance.

IRIS’s sound is a fusion of passion, energy and emotive riffs.  This exemplified across the six track E.P.  The title track Out of Fiction starts the E.P with energy and urgency.  A fast pace and infectious chorus sweep you along as Out of Fiction charges down your ears.  IRIS’s sound reflects the wide range of influences and continually keeps you on your toes as the band switch the delivery and urgency of the song naturally and seamlessly.  The band continue with the fluid transitions of style and delivery across the E.P.

Adding a bright sound Your Surprize is an energetic and fast paced track.  Vocal harmonies, crisp drumming and intelligent guitars show IRIS’s technical skill as much as their creativity.  The guitars maintain a bright but heavy edge as vocals and drums provide more hooks than a giants curtain rail.   A drum breakdown steals your ears as the song builds back up to a high energy finish.  This heavy and dominant sound is also reflected in Long Walk to Sleep.  The band’s latest video, Long Walk to Sleep hits you instantly with heavy and driving riffs.  More strong drumming adds to this to help carry the chorus and another chorus you’ll begin to sing instantly.   As the track goes into a dark vocal break down you anticipation builds, before Long Walk to Sleep explodes back into life.  The Out of Fiction E.P is a tale of relationships, something everyone can relate to they are driven down to the center of your brain harder than a shot of tequila to the eye by passionate and direct vocals.

IRIS

IRIS do have a softer side however.  The Shade begins with another emotive riff as strings sound above it.  As the guitars soften, Adam Smart’s vocals have a more delicate feel to them.  These add to the fragile sound of The Shade and show IRIS’s versatility.  As your ears get comfy however The Shade packs a big guitar lead heartfelt chorus, snapping them alert like a dog that’s heard the word walk.   This mostly delicate sound is echoed in the E.P closer Thicker Than Water.  An acoustic track, clear guitars complement tender vocals.  Despite being an acoustic track Thicker Than Water picks up intensity as it continues.  Despite working acoustically when played live on electric guitar it will still sound all kinds of good.

On an E.P of strong songs Lie To Me shines a little brighter.  Aggressive from the start; riffs, drums and vocals conspire to create a louder and pounding monster of a track.  Lie To Me flies out your speakers as one more vocal breakdown breaks the track into a new urgency.  Even with thirty seconds to go the track reaches a new level of energy and determination as everything turns up and vocals become screams.

IRIS have a dynamic and versatile sound which will press all the right buttons in your brain.  This E.P promises big things of new material to come.  See them and hear them.  You know it makes sense.  Scroll down to see the new video to Long Walk to Sleep.  See live photography links from IRIS’s last Canterbury gig below.

Image by GIGgle Pics / Sarah Quinn.

Image by GIGgle Pics / Sarah Quinn.

IRIS on Facebook / IRIS’s Music

Engineer Records on Facebook

IRIS Photography from GIGgle Pics

David Horn

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