Album Reviews

The Pretty Reckless

Death by Rock and Roll

The Pretty Reckless Death by Rock and Roll Album Cover
The Pretty Reckless – ‘Death by Rock and Roll’

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The Pretty Reckless – Death by Rock and Roll – Album Review

Over the course of a decade and three albums, The Pretty Reckless have already proven themselves to be more than just a vehicle for Taylor Momsen. In fact the band has far surpassed the expectations placed upon them at the start. Back when they were seen as just another young actress with visions of grandeur.

So as The Pretty Reckless release their fourth studio album, will their consistent streak of releasing quality music continue? The simple answer to that is yes!

Read our review of ‘Medicine At Midnight’ from Foo Fighters

If after all this time the band hasn’t demonstrated their rock capabilities to you, you need to re-evaluate your taste in music. Momsen is now perhaps better known for her musical endeavours than for her acting skills. That is probably the best compliment that could be paid to her.

Whilst discussing Momsen, it must be remembered that this is very much a group effort with Ben Phillips, Jamie Perkins and Mark Damon integral to the bands success.

Another surprise with hindsight is that the band has remained stable since their 2010 breakthrough. With ‘Death by Rock and Roll’ representing their fourth album, that stability has certainly contributed to the bands consistency.

The Pretty Reckless – ‘Death by Rock and Roll’

The singles that preceded the album’s release, in the title track and ‘And So It Went’, gave a snapshot of what to expect. Thankfully the rest of the record sticks to the high standards they set. The likes of ‘25’ and ‘My Bones’ further set the precedent for another quality output from the band.

The album also sees guest spots from Tom Morello on ‘And So It Went’ and both Matt Cameron and Kim Thayil on ‘Only Love Can Save Me Now’ which only add to the spectacle of a band at the height of their powers.

Listen to ‘And So It Went’ on our Spotify Hot List!

With ‘Death by Rock and Roll’, The Pretty Reckless have solidified themselves in the upper echelons of Hard Rock.  

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‘And So It Went’ by The Pretty Reckless will serve as the theme song for WWE Elimination Chamber. Read our countdown of the Top 10 WWE Entrance Themes!

Album Reviews

Pale Waves

Who Am I?

Pale Waves Who Am I? Album Cover
Pale Waves – ‘Who Am I?’

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Pale Waves – Who Am I? – Album Review

Following the success of debut album ‘My Mind Makes Noises’, Pale Waves are back with their sophomore record ‘Who Am I?’.

The album bursts into life from the first note of ‘Change’. There are immediate early-noughties vibes from the record, think Michelle Branch at her best. Another comparison that will likely come up often is that with Avril Lavigne, and that’s not a bad thing.

Pale Waves – ‘Change’

This album is unashamed in its influences and that is part of what makes it so great. With ‘Fall to Pieces’, ‘She’s My Religion’ and ‘Easy’ quickly in tow, you are sucked straight into the upbeat pop rock hooks.

Listen to ‘Fall to Pieces’ on our Spotify Hot List!

There is massive sing-a-long anthem potential at every turn. On this album the band has managed to capture a vibrant and exciting sound that will have you smiling wide and bouncing along.

From start to finish, this album shows very little ease from the pop punk onslaught that makes this such a spectacularly brash collection. Album climax and title track ‘Who Am I?’ however does provide a reflective finale. Overall though this is a stunning pop rock album; and is perhaps just what we need in these trying times.

Pale Waves have created something very special with ‘Who Am I?’ and the album will no doubt be hugely important in the bands career.

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Read our review of ‘FLOWERS for VASES / descansos’ from Hayley Williams

Album Reviews

Hayley Williams

FLOWERS for VASES / descansos

Hayley Williams FLOWERS for VASES descansos Album Cover
Hayley Williams – ‘FLOWERS for VASES / descansos’

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Hayley Williams – FLOWERS for VASES / descansos – Album Review

Last year Hayley Williams shed her Paramore bandmates for her first solo effort ‘Petals For Armor’. We enjoyed her debut so much, that we included the album in our Top 20 Albums of 2020.

Read our ‘2020 Album of the Year’ blog

Williams has now returned with a surprise release for her second solo record ‘FLOWERS For VASES / descansos’.

As with its predecessor ‘FLOWERS For VASES / descansos’ is far removed from the sound of early Paramore as Williams looks to cement her own musical path. Williams’ distinctive voice does however lend a sense of familiarity.

Hayley Williams – ‘First Thing To Go’

Williams recorded the album at home and the record is heavily intertwined with ‘Petals For Armor’. But, whilst Williams’ first album brought together a plethora of musical talent, this album sees Williams credited as “All songs written and performed by Hayley Williams”.

This album certainly feels like a statement from Williams, who has been targeted with many criticisms over the years in relation to her role in Paramore.

The record flows perfectly whilst journeying through folk, country and pop. It’s tender and warm. It’s thoughtful yet uplifting. Really it is a stunning piece of art. Its simplicity creates a majesty that elevates the music to powerful heights.

Listen to ‘My Limb’ on our Spotify Hot List!

On this album, Williams has managed to truly showcase her songwriting and musical talents for the world to admire. The word masterpiece is thrown around too often, but when the dust settles on Williams career, this album will be held up like Simba in the Lion King signalling the dawning of a new era.

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Read our review of ‘Medicine At Midnight’ from Foo Fighters

Album Reviews

Foo Fighters

Medicine At Midnight

Foo Fighters Medicine At Midnight Album Cover
Foo Fighters – ‘Medicine At Midnight’

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Foo Fighters – Medicine At Midnight – Album Review

‘Medicine At Midnight’ is the tenth studio album from Foo Fighters. Let that sink in. The band created by Dave Grohl in 1994 has been a part of our lives for over 25 years now. During that time their sound has largely remained intact. Driven by simple rock at their core, the groups first nine albums took the band from side-project to stadium fillers.

Read our review of ‘OK Human’ from Weezer!

So why would you alter that winning formula? Well, there have been accusations that since the masterpiece that was 2011’s ‘Wasting Light’ the band has been on autopilot. Foo Fighters-by-numbers some might say.

There was much intrigue therefore when they unveiled ‘Shame Shame’ as the opening single from ‘Medicine At Midnight’; the song representing quite the divergence from their natural sound.

Foo Fighters – ‘Shame Shame’

Fans worried that the band may have lost their hard rock sound needn’t worry though. There is still plenty of rocking available on this album. There is perhaps also a far greater amount of experimentation from the band than ever before.

This album is therefore anything but Foo Fighters-by-numbers. Whilst this is still definitely a Foo Fighters record, there are plenty of other elements that make up the album. There are numerous homage’s to the groups influences, with strong 80’s vibes coming through at times.

The album really feels like a love letter to both the bands own history and the music of those that influenced the members. Perhaps the best example of this is the clear Motorhead influence in ‘No Son Of Mine’.

Listen to ‘No Son Of Mine’ on our Spotify Hot List!

Ultimately this feels like an album that needs a little time to fall in love with, but when you do, it will be amongst your favourites.

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Album Reviews


OK Human

Weezer OK Human Album Cover
Weezer – ‘OK Human’

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Weezer – OK Human – Album Review

The pandemic has changed everyone’s plans multiple times over and many in the music industry have had to make big changes. Weezer have already had to reschedule tours and album releases. Now they have completely thrown out the rule book.

The highly anticipated ‘Van Hammer’ is now scheduled for release on May 7th 2021. That’s almost an entire year later than originally planned. Not resting on their laurels however, the band has been busy and this week we are treated to the surprise release of ‘OK Human’!

Buy ‘OK Human’ here

Coming in around the thirty minute mark the album is a little on the short side but what is in there is splendid. This isn’t a rocker of an album from the band; it’s mostly an easy listening affair in truth. There isn’t a lot that jumps out with opening track ‘All My Favorite Songs’ perhaps the song with the most set list longevity.

Listen to ‘All My Favorite Songs’ on our Spotify Hot List!

This is still a very good album from a band whose sound has always been interchangeable. There isn’t a bad moment on the album and fans will enjoy it. Realistically this feels like a present to their fan base as opposed to any attempt to garner a new audience.

Weezer – ‘Aloo Gobi’

That’s probably exactly what we need right now though. This is an album that you can work from home to; or cook Sunday dinner to.

But whilst this album certainly focuses in on the softer side of the band, it is still very much Weezer doing what Weezer does best.

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Album Reviews

Lonely The Brave

The Hope List

Lonely The Brave The Hope List Album Cover
Lonely The Brave – ‘The Hope List’

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Lonely The Brave – The Hope List – Album Review

When Cambridge’s Lonely The Brave announced the departure of singer David Jakes in March 2018 you could’ve been forgiven for thinking the end was nigh. Thankfully that couldn’t be further from the truth and now the band is back with their third album – ‘The Hope List’.

Order ‘The Hope List’ here

With Jack Bennett AKA Grumble Bee now at the vocal helm, ‘The Hope List’ well and truly evidences that Lonely The Brave have plenty left in the tank. Thankfully there is no grand departure from their previous sound for the band. This album is just as full of soaring and ambitious anthems as its predecessors.

The album dives straight in with ‘Bound’, ‘Distant Light’ and ‘Bright Eyes’ to lay bare that this is still the Lonely The Brave that we fell in love with on ‘The Day’s War’ and ‘Things Will Matter’. ‘The Hope List’ adds to the bands impressive repertoire and promises growth with this new line-up.

Lonely The Brave – ‘Bound’

Fears that the loss of Jakes unique talents would have too detrimental effect on the band’s sound are very quickly dispelled. Much like the material, Bennett is also just as gifted as his predecessor.  

Bennett handles the thunderous moments just as eloquently as the tender ones and whilst providing an evolution of the tone that made this band so special, also ensures that its identity remains.

The power of this album doesn’t just lie with Bennett of course and the rest of the band have summoned even more power and majesty then before. The music is sweeping and uplifting with ‘Keeper’ perhaps the perfect encapsulation of a band realising just how grand they can be.

Listen to ‘Keeper’ on our Spotify Hot List!

In these troubled times we all need a little hope, and it seems what we need right now is ‘The Hope List’!

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Read our latest blog – ‘Why We Need To Fix Our #BrokenRecord Industry’

Album Reviews

You Me At Six


You Me At Six – ‘SUCKAPUNCH’

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You Me At Six – ‘SUCKAPUNCH’ – Album Review

You Me At Six are a band that are keen to show evolution on each album. This is often met with demands for the return of their early sound by certain portions of their fanbase. With ‘SUCKAPUNCH’ the band promise to continue their evolution whilst teasing heavier elements.

Those heavier undertones are apparent from the get go as ‘Nice To Me’ and ‘MAKEMEFEELALIVE’ kickstart the album with a blast of angst ridden rock. This abruptly drops into ‘Beautiful Way’ which as a song probably gives the best overall impression of the album.

You Me At Six – ‘Beautiful Way’

From here on in the experimental side of the band really comes to the fore. The title track ‘SUCKAPUNCH’ in particular wouldn’t feel out of place in a nightclub full of Instragram influencers. Well, at least what I picture that to look like!

Thematically this is a darker, harsher album from the band but it retains enough of the pop hooks that have always been present in the bands work. Whilst there is certainly that darker edge on this album it still manages to sound hugely anthemic throughout. Songs such as ‘Glasgow’ and ‘Adrenaline’ will be massive live, whenever that can happen.

Listen to ‘Adrenaline’ on our Spotify Hot List!

You Me At Six right now are a band firmly located between a rock and a hard place. They will either be criticised for changing their sound or lambasted for relying on what made them popular. Thankfully You Me At Six are a band with a thick skin and an appetite to create the music that they want to make.

With ‘SUCKAPUNCH’ they have done just that. It will alienate some old school fans, but it will also earn them many more.

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Read our latest blog – ‘Why We Need To Fix Our #BrokenRecord Industry

Album Reviews

Chris Cornell

No One Sings Like You Anymore, Vol.1

Chris Cornell – ‘Patience’

I can still remember vividly the shock and sadness that consumed me with the death of Chris Cornell in 2017. Cornell’s unique voice had helped to soundtrack the formative years of my life through his solo work and that of Soundgarden, and for me the biggest influence – Audioslave. Memories of not just his death but the manner of that death still thrust great sadness upon me and no doubt his legion of fans.

I recently spoke of the relationship between my mental health and music in my blog ‘Mental Health, Music and Me’. It’s important to remember that talking helps and you can find some vital links to resources in that blog.

With the surprise release this week of the aptly named ‘No One Sings Like You Anymore, Vol. 1’ fans of Cornell have been given an early Christmas present; the chance to savour once again those dulcet tones of his. Looking at the tracklist I must admit that I hesitated to listen to the album. Not because I wasn’t sure that the work would be amazing, but because I knew that hearing Cornell sing these songs would elicit a range of emotions including immense sadness.

I’m really glad however that I took the dive into this amazing snapshot of Cornell. Through the course of the album many emotions are felt including thankfully joy and celebration of an incredible once in a lifetime artist. I’m not ashamed to admit that the one-two punch of ‘Patience’ and ‘Nothing Compares 2 U’ hit very hard and deep. Be prepared to cry at times and smile wide at others. This album is perhaps the perfect way to seal the legacy of a true icon in rock music.

As you progress through this stunning album you can see the effort put into the careful curation and construction of the record. You can feel the love that has been put into the album by those upholding the legacy of Cornell. This is not a cash grab release, and fans of Cornell are privileged to have the opportunity to listen to these songs. On this release, the true power and adaptability of Cornell’s heavenly voice is there for all to see.

Whilst I close by saying that this is a must own for fans of Cornell and his previous work; I must also stress that this album is an incredible piece of work in its own right, and even those not familiar with the great man will find joy, sadness and everything in between, on this record.

Album Reviews



Yungblud – ‘mars’

Yungblud, or Dominic Richard Harrison to his friends, has been on the cusp of world domination since the release of his debut album ‘21st Century Liability’ in 2018. Now it appears he is finally ready to take up that mantle. His second album ‘weird!’ came out on Friday and is a stunning piece of work that may well be recognised as his masterpiece when all is said and done.

From the opening notes of ‘teresa’, listeners are thrown headfirst into the captivating world of Yungblud. The album transcends genre as Yungblud manages to blend tender with ferocious and emerge with outright pop. The crossover appeal of this album will be huge with all ages and persuasions finding the content very accessible. Yungblud comes of age with this release and has set a very high standard for his future output to reach.

‘cotton candy’, ‘strawberry lipstick’ and the exceptional ‘mars’ build this party of an album perfectly to its middle section, which is absolutely packed with sing-a-long anthems such as ‘superdeadfriends’. It has to be said that ‘love song’ sounds like a huge anthem, and is a subtle change of pace together with ‘god save me, but don’t drown me out’ before the electric trio of ‘ice cream man’, ‘weird!’ and ‘charity’ raise the bar again.

As we get towards the albums finish we see Yungblud collaborate once again with Machine Gun Kelly to fantastic effect on ‘acting like that’. It’s then down to ‘it’s quiet in beverly hills’ and the prophetic ‘the freak show’ to close out this superb collection of music. With this release Yungblud has achieved that seemingly rare feat of actually living up to his enormous potential. Expect to see the name Yungblud everywhere from now on, and with music this good, deservedly so.

Album Reviews

Phil Campbell and the Bastard Sons

‘We’re The Bastards’

Phil Campbell and the Bastard Sons – ‘Son of a Gun’

Motorhead legend Phil Campbell introduced us to his Bastard Sons back in 2016 and together they released their excellent debut album ‘The Age Of Absurdity’ in 2018. That album helped to grow the bands fanbase and saw the band accepted as a legitimate entity. Well, two years later they are back with their sophomore album ‘We’re the Bastards’ as they seek to solidify their own legacy.

The elder Campbell is of course accustomed to hard work from his time with Motorhead. The band rarely took a break from touring and were relentless in the studio. Since the untimely conclusion of Motorhead, Campbell has sustained the same work ethic with his new band Phil Campbell and the Bastard Sons. He even found the time to release a solo album, ‘Old Lions Still Roar’, last year!

For those that don’t know, this band is named so because Campbell is joined by his actual sons Todd, Tyla and Dane; a fact that they are proud to proclaim in blistering opening number ‘We’re the Bastards’.  The theme is then furthered on the song that follows the title track, ‘Son of a Gun’. In fact there are a number of lyrical Easter eggs throughout the album for fans to enjoy.

And fans will enjoy this album. It picks up where its predecessor left off; with a steady stream of infectious rock and roll. Singer and sole non-Campbell, Neil Starr is on great form and helps to ensure that there is recognisable progression from the first album. The likes of ‘Promises Are Poison’, ‘Born To Roam’ and ‘Animals’ will fit seamlessly into the bands next set list whenever live music can return.

Whilst we might not know exactly when live shows will return, this album gives fans something to get their teeth into in the meantime. There is plenty here to whet the appetite with ‘Bite My Tongue’, ‘Hate Machine’ and ‘Waves’ particularly worthy of mention. As with Motorhead, you get the impression that Phil Campbell and the Bastards Sons won’t be breaking the mould anytime soon, but why would they when they appear to have formed the perfect style.

Phil Campbell has been consistent with his output throughout his career, and we should be grateful that he once again has an outlet for his talents. ‘We’re the Bastards’ is statement however that this band is a force to be reckoned with in its own right. The bands fans are the loyal kind hence their lyrics proclaim “…’cause we’re the bastards, and you’re a bastard too…”.  If you’re in to good old fashioned rock and roll, give this album a listen and you too will be in that club.