Posts Tagged ‘America’

Tickets to catch The Killers at some point on their November arena tour of the UK have gone on sale this morning. Word has it that websites were typically jammed soon after 9AM this morning, (the time of their release). The American act fronted by Moorman Brandon Flowers have already announced a second show at Birmingham’s LG arena, to satisfy the unlucky ones.

Mitt Romney, also a publically confirmed Mormon, recently voiced his liking of The Killers. When quizzed about this, bassist Mark Stoermer gave the deadpan response, “he’s, I guess, a guy and he listens to music and happens to like us, that’s fine”. Genius! He was also wise to steer clear of political persuasion, in fact denying any at all. “We’re not really a political band. And we don’t necessarily have all the same views, but none of us are very politically active anyway”.

Killers’ new album Battle Born is released on September 15th. Will it be a fourth straight UK number 1 record for the Nevada band, Flowers’ fifth? Almost certainly. Battle Born is a return following a four year drought for fans. During this time Killers took an 18 month hiatus and Flowers unleashed Flamingo, his solo debut, on the world. Below is Battle Born’s first single Runaways. Pulsing with their familiar throb, the chorus wallops you round the chops with the force of double-decker bus. “Blonde hair blowing in the summer wind, a blue-eyed girl playing in the sand” cooes Flower in a Morrissey-esque opening line.


Speaking to the NME about Battle Born, the Olympics & other topics, Killers had this to say:

Flowers: “we’re taking what we’ve acquired from playing all these shows on the road, that experience and that fire… and we’ve applied it to song-writing, I don’t think we’ve ever done that. You never know what you’re gonna get when you get in the [studio] room, we spent more time in the room on this one than we spent on any other one, hopefully it doesn’t sound like it!”

Stoermer: “so far on every record we’ve always gone and tried to make a big sound… I guess we hope to mature”

(On recording) Dave Koening: “it’s got more guitars but not necessarily on every song, it’s a lot more diverse, it’s got some rock songs, some ballads. everyday was different depending on what we were doing, if it was a day of singing I would probably watch basketball”

So, in short, there’s a lot to look forward to. Including the unnamed support acts accompanying them on the arena tour. Hopefully this winter will also bring another killer Christmas tune to add to their stocking. Last year’s Cowboy’s Christmas Ball sure was a festive treat.

Are you human or are you dancer? Me for one, I’m dancer.

Ever wondered why French music persistently fails to cross the “English” Channel, swamp our shores and pervade our playlists? Strange, non? Especially given that the Irish Sea continually fails to drown the wails of Jedward, Westlife, B*Witched & co. Neither did the North Sea successfully submerge the Barbie Girl antics of Aqua. The mighty Atlantic Ocean rarely proves an insurmountable obstacle for the hordes of American acts. Mysteriously though, the 21 mile stretch from Dover to Calais is some kind of Bermuda Triangle for the tricolor-waving troops of French bands…

This next post aims to change that fact, beginning with an introduction to a most eccentric act called Dionysos that I shall label the French Bellowhead.

Hopefully this post will help the English & others unearth French bands from across the Channel, or what the French call la manche [the sleeve]!

Merci et aurevoir.

Any thought on Alabama Shakes‘ debut performance on Later Live with Jools

Quite an individual style I thought… To me they looked like a group of misfits who had converged only because of music. Lead singer Brittany Howard is a male version of Lenny Kravitz. Bassist Zac Cockrell looks like a Magic Number who’s recently returned from a shopping spree at H&M, or simply – Zak Dingle off Emmerdale. Meanwhile, the woolly hat perched upon drummer Steve Johnson’s scalp makes him look like a small-time bandit.

On Hold On, Brittany Howard’s gob has no limits to its aperture! The rubbery thing just keeps stretching to the point where you could shove a baseball down there. Or any other sized ball or object of equivalent dimensions. Her voice has such power and soul. Combined with guitarist Heath Fogg’s (what a name, incidentally)  jazzy, groovy and bluesy twangs, the Shakes are a unique recipe

The Guardian spoke to the Shakes a few weeks back, see here for full interview.  Candidates for 2012’s best breakthrough?

‘I bring a little bit of that punk with me. The energy, man; I can still thrash. I can’t play the guitar very well but I can fake it’ – Brittany Howard.

Lonely Boy, the new single from The Black Keys has gone viral [or at least microbial], as smartly predicted in advance by Ethan, author of Letters From The Wasteland. The video features a Village People-style cameo from an uncuffed and unnamed bloke outside a motel lobby. Resemblance to Dave Benson-Phillips perhaps, anyone?


Previously, the blues-rock pairing were probably best known in the UK for their Jools Holland performances of Tighten Up, Next Girl and Howlin’ For You.

To label the duo from Ohio as understudies of the Kings of Leon would be a touch flippant. Dan Auerbach‘s guitar breeds a raw sound backed in emphatic style by Patrick Carney’s clattering drums. Underlying humour in their videos also deserves recognition, and is reminiscent of New York indie trio We Are Scientists.

The Keys have been plying their trade for over 10 years now, producing 6 studio albums in that period. Brothers, their most commercially successful record to date reached #29 and silver status here. El Camino their hotly-anticipated next effort will premiere in shops on 6th December. It looks certain to be the long-awaited Gold on the Ceiling for the Americans. The forthcoming winter could well be a Hell of a Season for them.

The only question remains, at what number will El Camino break into the Top 10 UK albums charts?