Album Review: Pulled Apart By Horses - The Haze

Pulled Apart By Horses The Haze

"We wanted to get back to the spontaneity of the first record, to just hang out and have fun and see what happened."

Three years on and with a new drummer in tow, Leeds rockers Pulled Apart By Horses have released their fourth record entitled The Haze. With the ambition of re-discovering the spontaneity of their first record, as well as pushing themselves in new directions, it's an exciting time in the bands career. 

As it turns out, The Haze is the logical next step in this bands progression. With the release of Blood, PABH had found a happy home in the world of rhythm, slowing down the non stop frenetic tempo of their first two releases, and introducing some groove to proceedings. It gave the band a new lease of life, they became PABH 2.0 if you will.

If Blood was about re-invention, The Haze is about progression. The band have struck a bridge between the break neck antics of Some Mothers and the rock n roll vibes of Medium Rare. The result, is a superior album than the last, which adds twelve solid tracks to the bands ever increasing repetoire. 

Title track The Haze sets its intentions out from the get go. With thick guitars and a riff that will have hardened rockers nodding in appreciation, it combines the rough with the smooth to great effect. Next up is The Big What If which uses the same formula (but with the addition of a bigger chorus) and instantly relieves any worries that this album was not going to stack up.

Hotel Motivation shows what you can do with groove at a faster tempo, whilst Lamping highlights that...wait a minute? Can this band actually slow things down? Don't get me wrong, it's certainly not a ballad but it'll be enough to give gig goers a breather during their next live outing.

Elsewhere on the album there's more high speed groove (Flash Lads) as well as some dark moments (Evil Twin) that encapsulate nicely what PABH have to offer in 2017. Gone are the self-titled days of non-sensical song structures, and tracks about high fiving (which is a shame to be fair) but in it's place stand a band with attitude and serious ambition. 

The Haze is available to purchase now.

Introducing: Faux

Faux Hot Headed

It's been a while since we featured some straight up pop rock on this here blog. Too long in fact, too god damn long. So it's a pleasure to introduce you to UK four piece Faux.

Hailing from Southampton, the band released a four track EP last year and are about to join Counterfeit on their UK tour this April. They've also just released a brand new video for stand out track Hot Headed, which features a couple of vocal melodies that you won't be able to shake off easily.

“Hot Headed combines our love of intricate musicianship and pop melodies; lyrically it explores the struggle of big personalities in small tight friendship groups."

Singer Lee Male was kind enough to answer the now infamous introducing questionnaire below. He proclaims his love (and hatred) for Brand New as well as progressively becoming less coherent as the questions go on. Rock n roll ain't an easy gig though, so we'll let him off.

1. What is your favourite album and why?

Deja Entendu by Brand New, purely because it was the first album that I really felt was a single piece, not just a collection of songs.

2. What is your least favourite album and why?

Deja Entendu by Brand New, I've listened to it too much.

3. If you had to describe your music in three words, what would they be?

Indie. Pop. Emo.

4. What made you start making music?

I think just the idea of being creative with friends sounded really appealing, I went straight from being a bedroom guitarist to being in a punk band that only played originals so I didn't do the whole Green Day/Blink 182 covers band that most kids got to have fun with but maybe it's not too late?

5. Favourite swear word?

I'm going to have to go with shit.

6. If you could create a band from musicians (excluding yourselves) living or dead, who would you choose?

Me on lead Theremin, Elvis on Hornucopian dronepipe, Prince on Sharpsichord, Kurt Cobain on Cross-Grainger Kangaroo-Pouch Tone-Tool and The guy on second violin from the titanic on Drums.

7. Obvious musical skills aside, do any of you have any secret talents?

James is really good at looking like Ron Weasley oh and Luke can strawpedo a bottle of red wine.

8. What is your favourite childhood TV show?

Kenan and Kel for sure! Iiiiiiiii put the screeeeeeeew in the tuna!

9. If you weren't making music, what profession would you like to attempt and why?

I would like to be the Tri-Wizard champion, I know that it would be a very risky career path as the competition is strong and you only get one real shot but I feel the eternal glory our weighs that.

10. If Heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the pearly gates?

Everything you can see is made of garlic bread.

You can catch Faux live on the following dates:

18.4 – Leeds, Key Club
19.4 – Manchester, Academy 3
20.4 – Newcastle, O2 Academy 2
21.4 – Glasgow, Stereo
22.4 – Nottingham, Rock City Basement
23.4 – Birmingham, O2 Academy 3
25.4 – Bristol, Fleece
26.4 – London, Underworld
28.4 – Teddy Rocks Festival, Dorset
28.4 – Southampton, Joiners
29.4 – Brighton, Haunt

Sunday Night Ponderings: Linkin Park - Heavy

Linkin Park Heavy

When does re-invention start to hinder a band, rather than help one? This is a question that crops up every time a well loved artist takes a walk on the wild side, and decides to shake off an older image of themselves and hit fans with a brand new side of their musical repetoire. 

One band who have had to do this more than most is Linkin Park.

Starting out as nu-metal poster boys, they transitioned into a more straight up arena rock act with third album Minutes to Midnight, before playing around with electronics a bit (A Thousand Suns) and collaborating with EDM and dubstep artists "which was the style at the time" on Living Things, or more accurately it's companion Recharged.

However it has to be said, these flirtations seem restrained in comparison with their latest foray into R&B and pop with new single Heavy

Straight off the bat, it's not a bad song, but, and here is where things get a bit more complicated, is it a Linkin Park song?

That's a silly question, because yes it is... well technically. The band wrote it, so...who else's was it going to be? Justin Timberlake's? Of course not, plus it's not really his style...but then again, it's not really Linkin Park's style, so whats going on here?

In a sense, it's a question of branding (bear with me here) imagine if Pepsi started selling jeans. Now don't get me wrong, these are nice jeans, in fact in comparison with a lot of other jeans, they were better. Nicer material, fine stitching and the colour doesn't fade after a few washes. A solid product.

But...would you buy these jeans? Or would you look for an established provider of denim based products to fulfil these needs, because quite frankly, it's a bit strange for a soft drinks brand to start producing leg wear. 

Moving away from that slightly tortured metaphor, there's also the fanbase issue. Rock fans are a notoriously tribal breed. They're not as tribal as metal fans (death to all but metal and all that jazz...or metal) but they're still for the most part anti-pop. So does it make sense to release a track that is going to alienate your core demographic? 

In a way I have respect for Mike Shinoda and the gang for just saying "fuck it, we like it" and saying nothing more. After all, art should have no boundaries, right? Don't stay in your lane, do something different, go crazy!

However, I do think it may have been better released as part of a Fort Minor-esque side project, maybe this could have been Chester Bennington's first single as a solo artist?

Jamie Lenman once said in an interview that he played a record producer the Reuben track Freddy Kreuger and asked for his thoughts. He turned to him and said...

"Kid, that's a great song, just not for this band."

I just want the band to be happy. That's all. I want them to be able to play what they want on stage and not have the fear of people shouting "PLAY ONE STEP CLOSER" incessantly. 

You do you, guys. You do you.

The Ultimate Indie Disco Playlist 2004 - 2010

The Ultimate Indie Disco Playlist 2004 - 2010

Last week a selection of indie disco tunes came on whilst preparing for a night out. And you know what? It sounded great.

Indie disco is one of life's great pleasures, and finding a venue that puts on a good "alternative night" should be cherished. It's a chance to enjoy all the benefits of the club scene (if there are any) with the added benefit of an incredible soundtrack to accompany it all.

Anyway, after reminiscing about some of the great indie nights I've been to, shout out to Sumo in Sunderland, I decided to put together...


Now before I share it with you, the playlist abides by a few rules which should explain the thought process behind the masterpiece.

1. An artist can only have one song featured on the playlist (excluding features and remixes).

This was a tricky one, because several artists have more than one absolute classic indie disco banger. But no one ever said it was easy, to quote Coldplay...who you will absolutely not find in this playlist. BECAUSE.

2. Artists who have since become arena/stadium giants are to be avoided, UNLESS they pass the banger/popularity bracket.

It's a complex system...and I won't go into it too much, but in short, the more popular an artist is, the bigger the banger has to be for it be included. But it's so much more complicated than that. Trust me.

3. The song must have been released during the years 2004 through to 2010.

Simple rule really. That's not to say that there aren't bigger better indie tunes released in years outside this period (the fact I couldn't include Azealia Banks 212 still hurts now) but that's the arbitrary limitation I stuck on it, and by God I'm sticking to it!

4. I have to like every song.

"Well...that's not very fair is it"? You might say.

Well actually, yes it is, so shut up.

5. The playlist is best ran through as is, shuffle at your peril.

These songs were not thrown together, oh no. They were carefully curated to serve multiple situations you might find yourselves in on a standard indie disco night.

For example, the first song, would not work as well anywhere else in the's build up is too long. Same with the closing track, a nice northern romantic indie banger to send everyone off in a chirpy mood...but put it in the middle of the playlist and you'll get everyone all befuddled.

Shuffle if you but be warned that the effect may not be as powerful.

And that's it! Without any further delay, I present the ultimate indie disco playlist 2004 - 2010.

If you have any suggestions, feel free to send them across, but be warned that like an indie club DJ, I might just give you an ok sign and completely ignore you.

You can follow the playlist using Spotify and stream to your hearts content. Enjoy!

New Music: The Physics House Band - Calypso

The Physics House Band Mercury Fountain

Psych rock is experiencing something of a boom recently, and whilst there are umpteen indie-psych outfits doing the rounds currently, The Physics House Band are managing to incorporate jazz influences into their music, which is creating a sound far more intriguing.

The Brighton based trio create what can only be described as exciting music. There is a never a dull moment, and keeping up with their stream of creativity can at times be exhausting.

As it turns out, the band have a big fan in comedian Stewart Lee who has explained why you should listen to these guys far better than I ever could.

Take it away Stew...

“I’m nearly 50. I don’t know what’s going on anymore, I’ll admit. The internet’s availability of all sources ever simultaneously has destroyed my understanding of cultural development as a logical progression. All music is time travel, forward and backward both at once, now.

But three years go my friend Simon Oakes, of prog-psych conceptualists Suns Of The Tundra, directed me to a YouTube clip of The Physics House Band. Impossibly youthful looking, and sounding like vintage seventies stadium-prog behemoth, but stripped of any errors of taste and judgment, fed amphetamines, made ashamed of their record collections, slapped in front of the whole school, immersed instead in post-rock procedure and practice, and made to apply their obvious talent and ability to a more worthwhile end than their forebears.

Three years on here’s their second record, a super-dense sci-fi mindfuck of a thing, music scholarship charity case keyboards in combat with squally spacerock guitars, dub boom bass and multi-time-sig clatter; a territory staked out over mushrooms at break-time, on the top floor of the multi-story car park, overlooking the ‘70s Bauhaus shopping centre concrete functional fountain square, but now gone all Escher in the aftermath, like a black and white architectural schematic drawing dipped in tie-dye.

Mercury Fountain’ doesn’t stop, a twenty nine minute surge of tracks that it would be a crime to split apart, the kind of part work The Physics House Band’s progenitors aimed at but never quite produce. It loads you into a water canon and shoots you out through its intermingled opening tracks, the group finally allowing you a pause for breath at the half way point, during 'A Thousand Small Spaces'; and then you’re kicked out of the airlock back into the Negative Zone again in 'Obidant', the laws of physics in reverse, Newton’s apples flying upwards past your grasping fists, your hair on end, arching to follow them, until you’re finally abandoned into the tectonic drift of 'Mobius Strip II'.

It’s a two black Americano experience that makes me wish I still had pin-sharp hearing to lose.”

You can listen to their new single Calypso below.

The Physic House Band's new mini-album Mercury Fountain is released April 21st via Small Pond Records.

Introducing: H. Grimace

Introducing H. Grimace

In the week following the Grammys, which was severely lacking in post punk rock n roll vibes (as well as a lot of other things), I'm pleased to introduce you to London's H. Grimace.

Made up of Hannah Gledhill (vocals/guitar), Marcus Browne (guitar), Corin Johnson (bass) and Diago Gomes (drums), the four piece create guitar driven atmospheric rock laced with self reflective lyrics, intent on tackling life's bigger issues.

Take their new single Land/Body for example...

"Land/Body is a song which took inspiration from the idea that we are living through the end of nature and what changes have occurred from the likes of mass production and standardisation."

Some heavy shit, but it sounds great. See for yourself below.

The band were kind enough to answer the now infamous introducing questionnaire, and with it put together quite possibly the best mythical band line up ever created. Take a look at the answers below!

1. What is your favourite album and why?

Women: Public Strain had a very informative impact on me when I first heard it. I thought they had made something that was as beautiful as it was experimental and explored many of my own interests in guitar music.

2. What is your least favourite album and why?

Least favourite I'd like to say something like Justin Bieber but I actually find bands like Muse harder to digest!

3. If you had to describe your music in three words, what would they be?

Rhythmic, melodic, dynamic

4. What made you start making music?

Loneliness and boredom! I was living and working in Melbourne, I was pretty lost at the time with a lot of time on my own and I just started playing the guitar and going to shows and I remember thinking this is me!

5. Favourite swear word?

I still have my northern tongue and "bint" still comes out!

6. If you could create a band from musicians (excluding yourselves) living or dead, who would you choose?

Ooh lovely Johnny Marr, Morris De Bank (Felt guitarist) Tod Trainer Shellac or Levon Helm on drums... quite different I know! Karen Carpenter/Neil Young on vocals and Dave Paho Papa M maybe on bass... I'm sure he plays bass? That's quite a mix isn't it! I'll make the coffee!

7. Obvious musical skills aside, do any of you have any secret talents?

I have always loved cooking and as a young woman I started early mass producing and eating cake!

8. What is your favourite childhood TV show?

Heartbreak high, I learnt about Australians, skateboarders and warehouses!

9. If you weren't making music, what profession would you like to attempt and why?

Well I've attempted a few and they are all split into groups, practical, passion, or purpose. Combining all three would be a dream. As much as I'd love to be an artist, visual or musician Id perhaps look for a more stable caring profession or alternative medicine like osteopathy.

10. If Heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the pearly gates?

“Here's your mum!"

H. Grimace release their debut album Self Architect April 7th via Opposite Number.

New Music: Sorority Noise - No Halo

Sorority Noise - No Halo

You know what the problem is with the musical landscape nowadays? There's far too much choice. It's impossible to keep up with everything that's going on, which means from time to time you miss out on amazing bands for years and years. Especially when they're from across the pond in the US.

This has been my experience with Sorority Noise.

They're an emo/indie four piece from Hartford Connecticut and consist of members from the bands Old Gray and Prawn...who I'm also unaware of. Really not doing well at this whole music journalism thing.

Anyway, they're great and having indulged myself with their past two records (which you should check out by the way) I was delighted to hear they have a new album coming out this March. They've also released a new track No Halo, which serves as a preview for their third outing.

With nods to the heavier side of Weezer's back catalogue, laced with a bit of Brand New for good measure it's a great record which stands up nicely with their output to date.

Frontman Cam Boucher has also elaborated on the meaning behind the track...

“This song is about having a friend pass away and still keeping them fondly in your mind to the point where you show up to their house forgetting that they’re no longer there. It’s about struggling to keep up with the people you love when you’re away and how to be/how it feels to not be there for them when they need you most.”

You can listen to No Halo below. The bands new album You’re Not As _____ As You Think is due out March 17th on Triple Crown Records.