Cockroach Clan – Songs About Blunt Knives and Deep Love

Veterans of the Norwegian punk rock scene, Cockroach Clan has a rich reputation and eagerly loyal fan base but have still been pretty much a secret outside of their home borders. We are only just getting our introduction to them right now and all thanks to a certain producer, Norwegian record label Fysisk Format, and their new riotously irresistible album, Songs About Blunt Knives and Deep Love.

Formed in 1994, Cockroach Clan released debut album Roach that first year with its successor Just Say Blow! unleashed three years later with the Going Underground EP nestled in between. Equally the years have seen the band share stages with the likes of The Toy Dolls, Discharge, UK Subs, The Exploited, Cock Sparrer, Anti-Nowhere League, Vice Squad, and GBH, Cockroach Clan only drawing thick acclaim for their rousing live presence. As for their releases, all three have gained minor classic status within the Norwegian punk scene but given the chance and luck, it is very easy to see the quintet finally embraced far further afield thanks to the glorious irreverent stomp of Songs About Blunt Knives and Deep Love.

Apparently the album came about through an idea cast by producer Hugo Alvarstein (The Good the Bad and the Zugly, Raga Rockers) who told the band, “Pick some gems from your 1990s recordings and rehearse them properly. Then visit my studio and I’ll make that scrap iron shine.” That is exactly what they did, throwing in a handful of new tracks and a cover song for good measure and from the effort has emerged one of the year’s major treats.

The release opens with a cover of the Mountain Goat track, Going to Georgia. Its melodic southern drawl is soon walked through by the punk scowling of Billy Cockroach, a union which lures attention with increasing potency as the slow swing of the track infests ears. It is a great start to the album but to be honest just a healthy appetiser to the more thoroughly addictive morsels to come.

You have a Bun is next, the track almost teasing ears with its initial strum of guitars before settling into an infectious stroll already accosted by Billy’s galvanic tones. The guitars of Akke Knoff Glomstad and Simen Jeistad erupt with a grin on their strings, their craft openly sharing classic rock/metal prowess to their punk instincts. With a slither of Oi goodness to its punk ‘n’ roll, the track makes way for the rousing antics of Fantasyland. Early melodic hookery leads to contagious rioting, mischief coating every note and gravelly shod syllable as the boisterous rhythms of bassist Morten Mormone and drummer Cato Holmen pounce, the song so lively even inanimate objects share its bounce.

The immediate folkish vocal welcome of Three wishes has devilry in its deception, knowing the swift outbreak of voracious punk rock close on its heels. Nevertheless, that initial hue continues to breed a thickly alluring folk punk stomp, vocals an inescapable carousing and guitars again revelling in the skills of their holders.

If the air and exploits of the song are virulent and they are, an epidemic of temptation erupts within the following On an island and indeed its immediate successors. The track bounds in with rhythmic nostrils flared, riffs swinging their muscles as vocals roar. The keys of Hugo Alvarstein add to the incitement, the track a UK Subs-esque riot with a host of sneaky hooks and bold manipulations proving so impossible to resist.

From one of the album’s major romps to another in Crash ka-boom where punk ‘n’ roll irreverence is in full roar and hosting a galvanic vocals mix rich in its own web of hooks aligning to join those in sounds boisterously hugging their horseplay while Necktie party vigorously bobs up and down poking at its victims. Both tracks rigorously got under the skin as too the even deeper burrowing Facts on the wall where old school punk colludes with pandemic rock ‘n’ roll in a track daring you not to leap in with vocal participation and a limb swinging body.

Favourite album moment came with Gene’s got a bun too, a track originally called Barbies on Drugs on the Roach album. Its first breath brings exuberant beats, its second a groove spun hook, both irresistible and only accentuated by the tenacious sounds and rampant vocals that follow with each subsequent lungful of addiction spreading enterprise.

Dit it again with its fiery rock guitar and swinging gait gave body and pleasure another eager workout with its multi-flavoured punk romp, its successor, Believer, then springing another ridiculously persuasive and enslaving hook within its irritable prowl. Both songs just aroused the spot with the latter another which almost alone had us scurrying to acclaim the Cockroach Clan as our new punk favourite to anyone in close proximity.

Closed up by Cockroach Fandango and its anthemic croon, Songs About Blunt Knives and Deep Love is simply glorious, a release no raw edged rocker should ignore. Whether we are talking about veterans like the Cockroach Clan or fresher aged protagonists, surely punk has rarely seen more exciting days with encounters like this thick reason.

Songs About Blunt Knives and Deep Love is out now via Fysisk Format; available @ https://cockroachclan.bandcamp.com/album/songs-about-blunt-knives-and-deep-love

https://www.facebook.com/cockroachclan

Pete RingMaster 17/09/2019

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Blood Command – Return Of The Arsonist

It is fair to say that we did not know too much about Norway’s Blood Command; certainly their name had cropped up but their death pop had never quite exploded on our radars here. That is until now and the release of new EP Return Of The Arsonist. Uncaging six tracks bred in the band’s voracious fusion of raging hardcore, rapacious metal, irritable punk and virulent pop, the new release simply demanded attention and as we found a lustful one at that.

With plaudit luring shows alongside the likes of Refused, Tragedy, Comeback Kid, and Gallows to name a few under their belt and following a successful tour supporting Rolo Tomassi at the end of 2018, Blood Command are certainly no strangers to real and eager praise and they can expect plenty more through their new offering too.

A conceptual successor to 2011 EP, Hand Us The Alphamale and specifically its opening track, Summon the Arsonists, the quickly inflamed Return Of The Arsonist roars and stomps like an entanglement of Animal Alpha, Deathcrush, and Mannequin Death Squad yet is defiantly unique within its own rapacious skin. The Bergen quartet kick it off with Don’t Strike A Match, Use The Lighter, the song rising up through dark atmospheric mists until settling into its contagious instincts and tenacious incitement. Karina Ljone’s tones quickly challenge and brawl with ears but soon cast their harmonic glamour over the senses too as sounds storm with similar hues. Hungrily brief, too much so in our mind, the track is a seriously rousing punk squall loaded with pop soaked catchiness and simply irresistible.

The EP’s title track follows, seducing with its volatile first breath before chaining attention with appetite feeding hooks and loaded rock ‘n’ roll. The rhythmic trespass of bassist Simon Oliver Økland and drummer Sigurd Haakaas is as infectious as it is punishingly incisive with the guitar of Yngve Andersen equally as animated and mercurial within the caress of keys. A fiery slice of temptation it craftily backs up the potency of its predecessor and the dextrous antics of next up No Thank You, I’m More In To Fake Grindcore. It too aligns instinctive rock boisterousness with its punk instincts, imagination lining every rabid twist and provocative turn.

Live Right Or Go Straight To Hell prowls and stalks the listener across its two minutes of unapologetically catchy punk ‘n’ roll, the track another aggressively manipulative proposal before which resistance is never a thought, while the fifty odd seconds of Ritual Knife is pure agitational contagion and just delicious.

The EP departs on the anthemic exploits of Afraid Of Water, again a proposition which from its throbbing bassline and swinging beats to flavoursome sonic trespass and skilled vocal commotion just hit the spot.

With their rescheduled our alongside Skindred ahead, 2019 is looking a major attention busting year for Blood Command with the rather superb Return Of The Arsonist leading the way.

Skindred/Blood Command European Tour Dates are:

November

29th Amsterdam Melkweg

30th Cologne Kantine

December

1st Karlsrue Substage

2nd Bremen Schlachtof

3rd Frankfurt Batschkapp

5th Berlin Binuu

6th Erfurt HSD

7th Dresden Beatpol

8th Prague Lucerna Music Bar

11th Munich Backstage Halle

12th Milan Legend Club

15th Madrid Mon

17th Toulouse Metronum

18th Paris La Maroquinerie

19th Lille Aeronef

Return Of The Arsonist is out now via Fysisk Format; available @ https://bloodcommand.bandcamp.com/album/return-of-the-arsonist

http://www.fysiskformat.no/wp_ff/roster/blood-command/    https://www.facebook.com/Bloodcommand/

Pete RingMaster 01/05/2019

King Midas – You Know My Name

You_Know_My_Name_Single_Cover

     Ahead of the UK release of their new album Rosso on March 3rd, Norwegian electronic art-rock outfit King Midas unleash the second single from the impending release in the magnetic shape of You Know My Name. The Fysisk Format released invitation into the band’s sixth album consists of three songs rich in eighties breath and melodic dance, a tempting which is very hard not to be hooked by. Rosso has already won a nomination for ‘Best Rock Album’ at the prestigious Spellemann Awards, dubbed as the Norwegian Grammys, and you can suspect you know why taking the new single as evidence.

      An immediate funk swagger breaks out within the electronic pop caress of You Know My Name, the lively and eager pulse of the song invigorating further an already vibrant and seductive breeze of sound. The smooth vocals soon lie their enticing textures on the welcoming lure of sound with that mentioned eighties synth pop breath making the strongest temptation. Thoughts of Blancmange and Heaven 17 spring up as the song continues with its sultry embrace whilst the jazzy croons of brass adds emotive fire and beauty to the lingering treat. It is a song which increases its potency with each play, merging nostalgia and refreshing modern invention in one pleasing melodic romp.

   The single is accompanied by firstly new song ColorSound, a more shadowed and pressing electronic narrative with a darker emotive depth and melancholic kiss to its synth pop weave. As the first, there is a strong familiarity to the track reaching back those decades which stops both from making startling statements on the passions but ultimately like its predecessor it ignites those flavours and essences into something magnetically pleasing.

   Finished by a more than decent remix by minimal-house duo Ost & Kjex of last year’s single Snow, an interpretation which also offers a stronger persuasion over numerous listens, the single is an easy to devour and enjoyable teaser for the new album. King Midas has returned from six years of silence in fine and tantalising form with their singles and album, and though You Know My Name is not breaking down barriers it undoubtedly gives some tasty food for thought with a new look at an arguably already well fed recipe.

http://kingmidas.no/

7.5/10

RingMaster 10/02/2014

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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