Wednesday, 12 November 2014

ACCELERATE: We have a chat with Troi Law, the frontman of The Duke, Detroit ahead of the launch of their new single!

The Duke, Detroit are four boys making noise. Over the last year they have been busy gigging and have played at some of Scotland's most iconic venues, including King Tut's. Their sound is firmly routed in the post punk genre but this is blended with electronica, New York disco and good old indie rock.

The boys are prepping for the release of their new single, "Accelerate", which they will be launching at the Electric Circus THIS FRIDAY. Ahead of this we caught up with frontman Troi Law to have a little chat about the band. We have also written up a review of the new single.

Hi Troi, thanks for taking the time to have a chat with us. First question we ask all artists is what is your first musical memory and what kind of records were on around the house when you were younger?
Troi: "When I was younger there was a lot of live music around my house. My dad is in a band and he would also have bands stay if they were on tour through Scotland. What was getting listened to when I was with my mum was mostly hip hop like De La Soul, Beastie Boys, DJ Shadow, whereas with my dad it was a bit more Depeche Mode, Nick Cave and Prince."
How did The Duke, Detroit come to be?
Troi: "It was a concept I was working on for a while. So I started making demos when I was studying fashion back in Fife, but it wasn't until I moved to Edinburgh and I started getting positive reactions from press and radio that I then began to take it quite seriously. I knew then that I needed to get the right guys onboard to make it a live band."
Considering none of you are dukes and none of you are from Detroit, where did the name come from?
Troi: "Man, where did the comma come from? It's just one of those names that sounds catchy for no reason, thought it was quite original and we quite liked the alliteration and punctuation in it."
You have recently played King Tut's. As a Scottish band this must have been a dream come true to play one of Glasgow's most iconic venues. How did it feel on the night?
Troi: "It was hot on the night! First time I've ever had to lose my jacket on stage! We were all extremely excited, to get the opportunity to play there after only six shows is a real honour! From seeing some of my favourite bands there including my dad's it was a bit overwhelming...until we hit the stage and killed it!"
You are currently prepping for the release of your debut single, entitled "Accelerate" - a very strong post punk tune. What is the track itself about and what influenced it?
Troi: "It is one of these songs where it's more like a story or film and I'm trying to sing the narrative from the first person. It's about a young man who's been outcast and is trying to find someone or something to connect to and naturally he finds a girl... It then becomes one of those Bonnie and Clyde / Natural Born Killer scenarios where they go away and become outlaws together on the run, like so many great films - it's open to interpretation."
You will be launching the single at the Electric Circus this week. What can fans be expecting at this show?
Troi: "Something completely different to what they have seen from us before. Still a lot of energy, still the same old disco, punk and hip hop beats as before... This time we just have a few more surprises in store. Also, our very own Dom is dropping a DJ set after!"

What does the rest of 2014 hold for The Duke, Detroit?
Troi: "We've got a couple more tracks to finish off recording for our album that will be released sometime next year. Some more filming, talk of doing an acoustic session. Then just after New Years we're making the big move to London."
Final question for the main interview - who would be in your dream supergroup?
Troi: "Vocals - James Brown, backing vocals - Michael McDonald, guitar - Thurston Moore, bass - Kim Deal, keys - Brian Eno, drums - Travis Barker and MC - Danny Brown. I really wish this was a band!"


Favourite Beatle?

Troi: "The dung beetle. But seriously, Stuart Sutcliffe."

Favourite band or singer?
Troi: "Lux Interior from The Cramps."

Favourite new band or singer?
Troi: "Not new - but most recent would have to be Childish Gambino."
Favourite song?
Troi: "Virtual Insanity by Jamiroquai."
Favourite album?
Troi: "Doolittle by the Pixies."

Dream collaboration?
Troi: "Would love to work with SBTRKT."
Vinyl, CD or download?
Troi: "Download! No way we would be able to cross over genres the way we do if music wasn't so accessible online."
When you press shuffle on your iPod, what is the first track that comes on?
Troi: "Was gonna try and say something cool but if I'm honest it was Woman In Love by Barbara Streisand. Great song, written and produced by members of the Bee Gees."
Style icon?
Troi: "Yeezus."
Favourite film?
Troi: "Grease."
Favourite TV show?
Troi: "True Detective."
Who would play you in a film of your life?
Troi: "James Dean."
Favourite food?
Troi: "Pizza."
Football team?
Troi: "East Fife."

Troi: "That was pretty fun!"


The Duke, Detroit's brand new single, entitled "Accelerate" is a post punk master class; it almost sounds as if it is a lost classic from the 80's. The song has a strong synthpop edge and a large, cinematic feel in the lyrics. It is extremely catchy and groovy as well with a great sing-a-long chorus to match. It well definitely fit in just fine alongside tunes like "Summer" and "City Breaks" in the live set.

The track will be available online from Friday and can be caught live on the same day at the "Accelerate" launch party at the Electric Circus in Edinburgh.

Hope you enjoyed this feature on The Duke, Detroit! Be sure to check out our previous feature on The Crush!

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Wednesday, 5 November 2014

THE TOWNE: Exclusive interview with Seattle-based power poppers The Crsuh! Also features a review of their brand new single "The Towne"!

Seattle trio The Crush had have a huge year with the release of their debut EP "Future Blimps" and the release of two singles, most recently "The Towne". The band features Kira Wilson on bass, Jacob Thiede on guitar and Daniel Cutting on the drums.
We recently caught up with the band to have a chat which you can read below. We have also written up a review of "The Towne".
Hi guys, thanks for taking the time to chat to us. The first question that we ask every artist is what your first musical memory is and what kind of records were on around the house when you were younger?
Daniel: "My dad played a bunch of 60's music around the house, especially the song 'Turn! Turn! Turn!' by the Byrds. I got my grunge fix from older siblings."
Jacob: "Mine mainly consists of Wings’ ‘Band On The Run” and ELO’s Greatest Hits albums. My dad was really into The Beatles and had a bunch of memorabilia, books and records about them too, so those were probably my earliest memories of music."
Kira: "I heard a mish mash of 80’s/90’s pop, new wave, punk, grunge with notes of 60’s jangle. My first memories of music were passenging in the car on long road trips with my parents, singing along to Talking Heads, Blondie, Lou Reed, Nirvana, and The Monkees, and MANY others."
How did The Crush originally come together?
Jacob: "Well, Kira and I have been going out for a while, and were in bands as more of supporting roles before we decided to hash some songs out and start The Crush! We met Daniel once we moved to Seattle and he writes songs, drums, and plays guitar as well."
Daniel: "I think the cosmos had something to do with it."
Kira: "I am the cosmos!" 
Where did the band name The Crush come from?
Kira: "When I was thinking of band names for this project I wanted to think of something lighthearted, cheezy, and classic all the same… Mostly I just wanted a band name that sounded catchy and this name worked for us!"
Jacob: "Definitely not that 90’s Alicia Silverstone movie!"
You, as a band, are from Seattle. Musically, Seattle has quite a rich heritage. Mainly from the grunge movement that grew there in the 80s. Is there any pressure as a young Seattle band to follow this and what is the scene like there at the moment?
Jacob: "At the moment there are so many amazing bands out there doing a lot of garage, surf, and early-psyc influenced stuff. This is great because you can always go out and see a killer show almost every night of the week here. Given that most of the music has a high-energy, rock 'n’ roll edge I can see how grunge would play some influence on the scene here. As far as Northwest musical heritage goes, I’m much more into The Sonics, The Wailers, The Kingsmen, The Fastbacks, and The Exploding Hearts than grunge though."
Daniel: "I think it's expected for at least one band member to wear a flannel, one to have long hair, one to be female, and one to be exceptionally good at an instrument. I got the flannel and long hair, Kira does as well plus she's a she, and Jake is a splendid guitar player. Plus we fit in with the garage rockers, so we stand a good chance. All of these characteristics are natural of course."
Kira: "I'm just a girl Daniel! Oh ya, like Gwen Stefani and No Doubt...nobody will remember you guys in three years but I’ll be on MTV 'n’ shit tearin' it up! What was the question again?"
Your most recent EP is entitled “Future Blimps”. Why?
Jacob: "Umm..."
Daniel: "Well blimps are a thing of the past, and I wondered to myself what a blimp would be like in the future if we kept improving on them. And our music is kind of like that. We're influenced primarily by 60's music, but adding our own modern twist to it. But if you want the truth, I really just compiled two random words together and they sounded cool and ubiquitous so we decided to use them!"
Kira: "What Daniel said… It’s funny that you ask because this EP felt particularly hard to name. We shared a lot of laughs in the studio trying to weed through all of the joke names we thought of for this album!"
For people who haven’t heard the EP yet, how would you describe it?
Daniel: "Future blimp-esque."
Jacob: "Kind of like a mixture of Creed, Kenny G, Barbra Streisand and GG Allen."
Kira: "The recipe for The Crush sound: add The Nerves, The Go Gos, Teenage Fanclub and a dash of Shocking Blue. At least that's what I’m going for (sorry Jake)!"
The lead track, “Never Gonna Stop”, is brilliant – jangly pop at its best! What is this track about and what influenced it?
Kira: "The song is kinda about Jake and I just being super busy and trying to fit all the fun we could into the summer before we had to go back to school and the weather got cold. Glad ya dig it!"
Daniel: "We needed a song that started off with drums."
Jacob: "Agreed! For 'Never Gonna Stop', I wrote it in the summer when I was doing a lot of traveling. When you travel around, you feel so busy all the time and like there is so much to do and so much going on. And then when you get home you realize there are still shows, parties, and so many other awesome things to do - kind of like catching-up on your life while you’ve been away!"
What’s up next for The Crush?
Daniel: "Future Blimps 2 EP?"
Jacob: "More shows, Trash-Humpers calendar shoots, stalking Paul Westerberg...another single by the end of the year perhaps? Who knows?"
Kira: "Probably the cops that interrogated us after they caught you stalking Paul Westerberg!"
Final question – who would be in your future supergroup?
Daniel: "Three of myself; one for guitar, bass, and drums. Plus a different singer for every song. The band would be called Blank & The Daniels, or The Daniels feat."
Kira: "Chrissie Hynde on guitar and backing vox, Kathleen Hanna on lead vox, myself on bass and backup vox, Moe Tucker on drums."
Jacob: "Hmm...tough question. Probably the guitarist from Powder, a resurrected Brian Jones, Paul Weller, Pete Thomas from Elvis Costello and the Attractions on drums, Sam from Foxygen on vocals, and Dave Berkham on bass! I’d just play the triangle or something and drive the tour bus!"
Favourite Beatle?
Daniel: "Lennon."
Jacob: "Don't ask me that! My head might explode."
Kira: "Paul! He's my bass idol, and a total songwriting genius!"
Favourite band or singer?
Kira: "Ooh, this is a close one! It's a tie between The Beatles, The Pretenders and The Ramones."
Jacob: "Rolling Stones, have been for about a decade."
Favourite new band or singer?
Daniel: "Tame Impala."
Jacob: "Temples or Foxygen."
Kira: "Tacocat!"
Favourite song?
Jacob: "At this very moment? The Mod Lang by Big Star. Oh yes."
Kira: "Zig Zag Wonderer! Captain Beefheart! Nice bass part!"
Favourite album?
Jacob: "Revolver."
Kira: "Release Me by The Like."
Vinyl, CD or download?
Kira: "Vinyl! You can't beat that sound. Tapes are rad too!"
Daniel: "Vinyl for sure, but they can be expensive. I've been purchasing CD's more lately because they're cheaper."
Jacob: "Download for free to get into it; then go see a show and buy the vinyl!"
When you press shuffle on your iPod, what is the first track that comes on?
Daniel: "Kurt Vile - Breathin' Out."
Jacob: "Probably something by The Jam."
Kira: "Shelter Song by Temples."
Style icon?
Jacob: "Paul Weller, Pete Townshend, Miles Kane, Liam Gallagher..."
Kira: "Twiggy for throwback style, and the Calvin sisters from Bleached for modern style."
Favourite film?
Jacob: "Goodfellas."
Favourite TV show?
Kira: "The early seasons of Weeds are the best!"
Daniel: "Hard to choose, but Breaking Bad is up there."
Jacob: "Curb Your Enthusiasm and The Mighty Boosh for sure!"
Who would play you in a film of your life?
Kira: "Anne Hathaway!"
Daniel: "Jim Sturgess, Wiley Wiggins in the 90's, Tom Cruise. All based on looks."
Jacob: "Young Dustin Hoffman or young Al Pacino."
Favourite food?
Daniel: "Pizza. My life is pizza."
Jacob: "The pizza Daniel makes! Or Pad Thai..."
Kira: "Swimming rama noodles. Yum!"
Football team?
Kira: "I love football! I used to play when I was younger, I do like playing the game more than watching..."
Daniel: "None."
Jacob: "Well we live in Seattle so go Sounders! Not much of a footballer, but I like watching FC Barcelona and Real Madrid when I am at a bar."
The new single by The Crush, entitled "The Towne", is certainly a very strong power pop track. The opening riff, and the riff that purveys through the track, is classic vintage rock and roll. Think "Satisfaction" by The Stones or "The Riverboat Song" by Ocean Colour Scene, if there's any justice that riff should go down in history alongside such songs.
Kira's vocals are on form too and could be compared to Blondie's Debbie Harry with a hint of Nico's days with The Velvet Underground. And of course, the drumming is energised and driving.
The lyrics too are on the point and aggressive with lines such as 'I don't love you anymore' and 'somebody get me out of this town(e)".
All in all, this could be the best song by The Crush yet! Check it out, it's free from their Soundcloud page!
Hope you enjoyed this feature on The Crush, be sure to check out our previous feature on Crash Club!
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Sunday, 2 November 2014

RECONDITION: We have a chat to Neal from Scottish electro rockers Crash Club and also review their brand new single, "Recondition", featuring Ian MacKinnon of Medicine Men!

Crash Club are a Scottish electro rock band that specialise in combining the best elements of the gritty electro world and the old school rock and roll world. They have recently supported Klaxons and have played a couple of exciting Halloween gigs as well.
The band have recently released their second single, entitled "Recondition". The track features Medicine Men's very own Ian MacKinnon on vocals and is a fine follow up to their debut single, "Jawbreaker". It is available as a free download via Crash Club's official Soundcloud page.
In this feature we catch up with bass player Neal McHarg to have a chat about all things Crash Club and some other stuff too*. We also write up a review of "Recondition".
* Interview was done a couple of months back so the gig dates listed are from August/September!
Hi Neal, thanks for taking the time to chat to us. First question we want to ask is what your first musical memory is and what kind of records were on around the house when you were younger?
Neal: "My first musical memory would probably be when I was in Primary 7, I used to copy music I liked from the radio onto a tape, probably really dodgy stuff as well and the challenge was to try do it with the DJ being on the tape. Was always crap at that though! For me and Aran, our Carol (our mum) never really had music on around the house, it would be at the weekends we'd hear our first proper musical influences even if we didn't know it then, my auld boy's misses at the time loved Neil Young, Christy Moore, The Smiths, Oasis, Stone Roses, loads of other stuff too but can't remember."
How did Crash Club begin?
Neal: "The band began when Aran and myself had just left our first band. Sammy wanted to try remix a track we had done with that band so we popped up to the home studio he had, and before long we'd kinda moved a million miles away from the remix and started writing some beats, that was the beginning for us. Probably took another year before the idea of going live came about though."
Where did the band name come from?
Neal: "It was Sammy that came up with the name, it was actually between two names, Crash Club or Clash Club."
Your debut single was entitled “Jawbreaker” and was a really strong track. What was the tune about and what would you say influenced it?
Neal: "See it's funny because when we're writing the actual tunes on the synths and then the live parts, we pretty much just go with the flow. The track names came from what we think the track reminds us of, in this case 'Jawbreaker' reminded us of a kinda swagger towards a fight. 'Recondition' is different though, it's title came right out of the song!"
Your upcoming single “Recondition” is a collaboration with Ian MacKinnon of Medicine Men and Selective Service. How did this collaboration come about?
Neal: "Like all the songs we collaborate on, it's with our good mates. Ian is a brilliant lad, a good mate of ours, and just so happens we loved the bands he's been in, including his first band Dresden (long before I even knew him). We played a show with the old Selective Service and we kinda suggested the idea, than it was decided one drunk night out this would definitely have to happen. Track was sent over and two days later the vocal demo was done."
You recently played King Tut’s. This must have been a dream come true, especially for a Scottish band. How did it feel playing this gig and how did it go down?
Neal: "King Tut's was a great night, everything came together perfect on the night, DF couldn't be any more helpful in letting us do what we needed to do to, the lighting show went down great which added to the overall feel of the show, and the fact we had two of the singers joining us on the night (Ian and Tragic) was a good way to say this is what we can do."
What does the rest of 2014 hold for Crash Club?
Neal: "We've got a late night rave to do in Edinburgh on the 23rd / early hours of the 24th of August. Tenement Trail Festival on the 4th of October and there's a couple of things still to be confirmed for the last two months of the year which will be a great way to write off a productive 2014."
Final question – who would be in your dream super group?
Neal: "That's hard, my dream super group... Personally, the Primal Scream of 'Xtrmntr' was the dream super group with Shields, Mani, the Throb all still ripping it up."
Favourite Beatle?
Neal: "Harrison."
Favourite band or singer?
Neal: "Black Angels or Oasis."
Favourite new band or singer?
Neal: "Jagwar Ma."
Favourite song?
Neal: "Wrote For Luck or Swastika Eyes."
Favourite album?
Neal: "Xtrmntr."
Vinyl, CD or download?
Neal: "Vinyl by miles."
When you press shuffle on your iPod, what is the first track that comes on?
Neal: "Just done it there and got the legend that is Eddy Grant!"
Style icon?
Neal: "If it's made by Tenten then I'll probably wear it."
Favourite film?
Neal: "End Of The Century documentary about the Ramones. Proper film wise, Goodfellas."
Favourite TV show?
Neal: "Sopranos."
Who would play you in a film of your life?
Neal: "One of the Osmonds!"
Favourite food?
Neal: "Chicken."
Football team?
Neal: "Ah, best leave that a wee surprise."
Crash Club's second single "Recondition" is out now as a free download via their Soundcloud page.
The track is classic Crash Club; a gritty electronic rock number. Sammy's beats are brilliant and tight as always and the McHarg brothers are on form too. The guest vocalist, Ian MacKinnon from Medicine Men, brings plenty to the overall feel of the song as well; sometimes straight out rock 'n' roll in his approach, other times a bit more mysterious.
Overall, the track does not disappoint at all and follows on quite nicely from the likes of "Jawbreaker", "Tesla" and the anthem that is "Joy".
Keep it coming Crash Club!
Hope you enjoyed this feature on Crash Club, be sure to check out our previous feature on The Struts and Pariah Soul!
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Saturday, 1 November 2014

ROLL UP: Last Sunday night King Tut's hosted an evening of rock and roll featuring blues rock trio Pariah Soul and the sensational indie glam rockers The Struts! Here's a little review!

Last Sunday one of Glasgow's most famous music venues played host to an incredible, raucous, modern rock and roll show! The venue was of course the brilliant and intimate King Tut's Wah Wah Hut and the band was The Struts! Support on the night came from Franklin and blues rock trio Pariah Soul!
Unfortunately we showed up after Franklin's set but we have posted a review of the remaining two acts below!
First up were local boys Pariah Soul. The trio immediately impressed with a future blues rock anthem in the form of "45". The tune and the performance of the band demonstrated a simplicity lifted from punk rock bands such as the Ramones and the Pistols combined with a slightly more complex approach hinting towards great blues rock bands such as Led Zep. The set continued in this vein and reached a climax with the final song to be performed. The track was entitled "Let The Rain Fall" and was a definite highlight in the set.
All in all, Pariah Soul are definitely a band to look out for and their tunes will continue to grow and become bigger and better. But for now you can enjoy their debut EP on their Soundcloud page and hopefully front man John McGuigan will be able to invest in a new pair of jeans! For those who were there, you know what I mean!
Next up were The Struts.
For those unfamiliar with them, they are an indie rock group who are influenced heavily by the golden age of glam - bands like T. Rex and Slade. In interviews they have stated their sound and image to combine "the swagger of The Stones" with "the sophistication of Queen".
Sure, that's quite a big statement to live up to BUT The Struts do it and more. Everything from their intro music (the epilogue from Guy Ritchie's Rock n Rolla film) to the show they put on is top and incomparable to anything else around at the moment.
They opened with "Roll Up" and the shear catchiness of this tune, combined with Luke Spiller's energetic showmanship, certainly got the crowd going. This was followed up by a trio of the biggest, most anthemic singles of 2014 - "Could Have Been Me", "Kiss This" and "Put Your Money On Me".
"Could Have Been Me" was simply off the scale and that tune will certainly be filling stadiums one day soon. Anthemic is the only word that you could possibly use to describe it. "Kiss This" demonstrated the brilliance of Adam Slack's guitar licks which add a lot to the overall Struts sound. "Put Your Money On Me" did not fail to impress and the danceability (yes, that's a word!) of the track left no one in the audience stationary.
The rhythm section of The Struts (bassist Jed Elliott and drummer Gethin Davies) are world class also and provide the song's with their driving power. After some more crowd interaction from Mr. Spiller, containing some X-rated humour, the band launched into "She Makes Me Feel". The song's melody references "Waterloo Sunset" but a 100 miles an hour faster - so the wordy 'catchy' springs to mind again!
More songs from the "Everybody Wants" studio album were played, including a sensational rendition of "My Machine", before the band came to a cover. Which was of course a song from the mighty Tyrannosaurus Rex, from "The Slider" album - "Get It On". This again demonstrates the tightness and expert instrumentation of Adam, Jed and Gethin (not to mention Luke's showmanship which still hadn't let up). The rendition of this song was, quite simply put, perfect and even featured a bit of improvisation when Luke came down and (literally) sat down amongst the crowd.

The main set concluded with the high adrenaline anthem that is "Black Swan", after which Luke immediately collapsed clutching the mic stand! (all part of the theatrics I assume, I hope...) anyway, the mic was lucky to survive the fall!
 Luke and Adam returned to the stage a short while later to perform an "acoustic" rendition of Kiss This b-side, "Matter Of Time", but on an electric guitar... This was definitely a great sing-along moment though.

For the finale the whole band returned to the stage for the pogo-along, sing-along, dance-along glory that is "Where Did She Go". Which is, yep, you guessed it, catchy as hell! The final chorus seemed to be repeated endlessly and Luke found time to bring the whole venue to their knees before instructing them to "get up and dance" one last time for the final chorus!

urely amazing, most definitely the best live show of the year and my advice would be to catch this band shortly, in a nice intimate space before they take to the stadiums!
Pariah Soul Setlist
Bring Me Down
Don't Come Easy
Tears Ain't For Running
Let The Rain Fall

The Struts Setlist

Roll Up
Could Have Been Me
Kiss This
Put Your Money On Me
She Makes Me Feel
My Machine
You & I
Dirty Sexy Money
Get It On
Let's Make This Happen Tonight
Black Swan
Matter Of Time
Where Did She Go

Hope you enjoyed this feature on Pariah Soul and The Struts, be sure to check out our previous feature on The Empty Hearts!

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