This page contains a Flash digital edition of a book.



It’s rare to find a record of such seeming straightforwardness that still manages to enchant so consistently as this. b’lieve i’m going down… is an exercise in frankness and acoustics of such high order that by the end of the hour that it takes to play out you’ll think of dirt as something romantic and wonder why anyone ever bothers messing with complicated words. Tat’s the Vile effect. Tis isn’t a tight album but it embraces its looseness, falling into long trances of instrumental repetition that push up track lengths but just about manage to get away with not feeling forced - though Lost My Head Tere comes closest. Tat’s Life,To floors you with a dreamy fairy tale of brutal realism and is probably the standout piece. Tat said, there isn’t a dud to be found here. Trough the dusty hypnotism of Wheelhouse via the itchy, broken and brilliant All In A Daze Work and on to Wild Imagination with its languid closing breaths Vile fills every nook with airy purpose. And we haven’t even mentioned Stand Inside yet. Oh my. b’lieve i’m going down… will undoubtedly end this year as one of my favourite releases of 2015.



With only two EP’s under his belt, Kwabs has already managed to make an indelible impression across the board. Critics have singled him out as the front- runner of the neo-soul movement, and his singles have done the usual commercial circuit. It would be easy for him, then, to rest on his laurels, smooth out any idiosyncrasies and churn out bland soul/electronic music that would slot in nicely into any BBC Radio 1 playlist. Tankfully, with Love + War, his first LP, Kwabs doesn’t play the game. While tracks such as Walk and Wrong or Right are pulsating, heady and festival-friendly, the rest of the album pushes boundaries. Take the title track, which spends a good 40 seconds building up a shimmering layer of synths. Or, Father Figure – one of the album’s high points - which tentatively explores an absent father figure. Unlike some of his counterparts, Kwabs isn’t afraid to lay bare his emotions. Te star of the album, however, is undeniably his voice. Such is its range, it could be tempting to overwhelm the music but Kwabs manages simultaneously to restrain and showcase his smooth vocals; Sam Smith take note.



Tere comes a time in every rock star’s career when two things can happen; either they continue crafting fantastic, glamorous guitar music, planting their flag in a generation’s pop culture lunar surface, or they stagnate, cheesing and sleazing their way through album after album about girls and fast cars but with less passion than they used to. It’s at this difficult crossroad we find Josh Homme (of Queens of the Stone Age fame) rekindling the EODM fire with long-time collaborator Jesse Hughes for their first LP in seven years. As the title may suggest, Zipper Down is a pretty half- arsed attempt by two grown men to recapture the spirit of their youths, and in all the wrong ways. Te churning guitars and hook-driven choruses are energetic and catchy and Homme’s dreary vocals bring substance to the record, like on Skin Tight Boogie, but the lyrics and even the song titles let the side down. Got A Woman is slapdash and careless “I got a woman who likes to shake her ass… come on baby get movin’” and Te Deuce is disappointingly old fashioned. Not even a Duran Duran cover, 1982’s Save A Prayer, can save Zipper Down, a mid-life crisis of an album which comes across creepy and vulgar more than a balls-out retrospective of two aging rockers’ golden eras. No pun intended. / October 2015 / 37

Page 1  |  Page 2  |  Page 3  |  Page 4  |  Page 5  |  Page 6  |  Page 7  |  Page 8  |  Page 9  |  Page 10  |  Page 11  |  Page 12  |  Page 13  |  Page 14  |  Page 15  |  Page 16  |  Page 17  |  Page 18  |  Page 19  |  Page 20  |  Page 21  |  Page 22  |  Page 23  |  Page 24  |  Page 25  |  Page 26  |  Page 27  |  Page 28  |  Page 29  |  Page 30  |  Page 31  |  Page 32  |  Page 33  |  Page 34  |  Page 35  |  Page 36  |  Page 37  |  Page 38  |  Page 39  |  Page 40  |  Page 41  |  Page 42  |  Page 43  |  Page 44  |  Page 45  |  Page 46  |  Page 47  |  Page 48