27 April 2017

Kovax - If There Was Ever Any Doubt EP

Kovax are back!  The last time we heard from this Leeds mob was the release of their single 'Godot' (review cleverly linked here) which I really enjoyed, so I am glad that they are back with the first EP called 'If There Was Ever Any Doubt' which will be released on 8th May 2017.  Since I last checked them out they have released another single called 'Monkeys', they have been touring in the UK with bands such as Youth Man, Nova Hand and I Cried Wolf, played some festivals and appeared in a few publications.  All good work for the DIY outfit, but how has the music progressed? 

01 - Breathe

Starting this EP is 'Breathe' which sounds like it could have been used for an old-school skateboarding video from the late 90's.  This is actually meant as a compliment as it has some fantastic break with a melodic hardcore feel to the guitars, a drop of low, slung nu-metal to the end riff and a great performance from the band.  The sound is somewhere between 'Godot' and their last single 'Monkeys', as it has a lighter melody in the mix - a good start to this EP.

02 - Atlas

There is a bit of lounge music added to this song, but instead of going all Faith No More and just staying in that style for the song, it jumps between the lounge verses and low-lunging, bass driven choruses that will start a fight in an empty room.  It is another interesting song that has a great bass hook, it digs its way into your brain and stays there for hours!

03 - Waves

This is another song that is itching to explode, with more hooks than on your average fishing boat.  It is a storming number that jumps out of the stall with an energy that never dips below manic from the first note of this song to the very end, as the quality of each song improves with each song.

04 - Kennel

Now this one is very interesting, with a bass line that could puncture a hole through a wall. 'Kennel' does not just come out with on attack mode, it is primed and ready to induce a mosh pit in the space it takes for the penny to drop that shit is going to get real.  It is a crunching number, one that relies on a looping aggressive riff, that bass that is built like a tank and drums that sound like a machine.  It is a storming track and a great ending to this EP.

On this EP, the band have added some lighter melodies, but there is also a hardcore punk element to their sound.  It is an EP where they are exploring what it is that they can achieve with their sound, trying out different things and see what works.  Now, as the old phrase goes "Rome was not built in a day" and the same goes for any band who are starting out in the world.  But Kovax have released a good EP here which has some cracking tunes, with each song taking the energy from the previous and building on it.  If they come to your neighbourhood, check them out and also check out their Bandcamp page on 8th of May and get this EP.

4 out of five - This is good, well worth checking out

Top song - Kennel

You can follow the activities of Kovax on Facebook here.

You can visit the Kovax Bandcamp page here.

You can visit the Kovax page on Musicglue here.

At the time of writing, 'If There Was Ever Any Doubt EP' is not available on streaming sites.

A guide to some of the lesser known UK festivals which are happening in 2017

As we approach festival time in the UK, I have been getting a lot of press releases from various acts and PR companies to promote these events and I usually just sort of ignore those posts.  This is not really a blog that has a history of live reviews, but I am aiming to add more live reviews in the future.  But there are a few festivals this year which have caught my eye, some old favourites which are grabbing our attention and I thought that I would do this one post for some of these events.  For full disclosure, not all of the festivals on this page have contact me for publicity, some of them I am just a fan of that event and as I have been entertained at their events, I want to repay that back a little.  Now, I am not going to add Glastonbury, Download, Leeds/Reading, i.e. the big ones.  They already have such a huge publicity machine behind them, that they do not need any further help.  But any help I can be for other festivals, I will try my best.  So, much like this blog, this post will focus on many different style of festivals and shows.  I will also add links of where you can get tickets on See Tickets if there is not a link on the festival website on this blog (but other online web box offices will be available) and all photos will be from the said festivals Facebook page:

Hit the North Festival:

15 venues, 75 bands and on one day!  On 28th April (TOMORROW), one of the biggest things to happen in the Newcastle upon Tyne will hit every venue and make this Toon glorious again!  Acts playing this include Honeyblood, JAWS, Slaves, Better Days, Frightened Rabbit, Judas, Ten Tonnes and so many more.  It is £32 a ticket and it is almost sold out! 

You can purchase ticket from SeeTickets here.

You can visit the Hit the North festival Facebook page here.

Damnation Festival: Genres – Metal, Grindcore, Noise, Amplifier Worship

This is one of my favourite festivals in the UK, ever since it started in Manchester it has always brought some of the best underground metal acts together and has improved with each year.  Whilst only four bands (Dying Fetus, Warning, Nordic Giants and Gatekeeper) have been announced so far, there is still plenty of time before the 4th November for that line up to fill out.  It is held at Leeds Metropolitan University, the cost of a ticket is £40 and I am hoping to make it this year.

You can visit the Damnation website here, which also has a page for purchasingtickets.

You can visit the Damnation Facebook page here.

Mouth of the Tyne Festival: Genres – Indie, Classic Rock, Soul, Folk

Over three days, Tynemouth in Tyne and Wear (about 10 minute drive from where I am sitting) will host three days of music at the wonder Tynemouth Priory and various other venues in the village.  Acts playing include Elbow, Laura Marling, Billy Ocean, Roddy Woomble, Cattle & Cane and many more.  It is more mainstream than to be honest, but there are still some fantastic acts playing.  Now, some of the events are already sold out, but you will be able to find out more information on the Mouth of the Tyne website.

You can visit the Mouth of the Tyne festival page on the North Tyneside Councilwebsite here.

You can purchase tickets via See Tickets for this event here.

You can visit the Mouth of the Tyne Facebook page here.

Infest Festival: Genres – EBM, Darkwave, Industrial, Noise

Coming from Bradford, Yorkshire, Infest Festival is a EBM, Darkwave, Noise, Industrial festival that has to be attended to be believed.  This events happens on 25th-27th August and it is held at the University of Bradford Student Union.  Acts playing this year include Revolting Cocks, Die Krupps, Sidewalk and Skeletons, Rotersand, Among The Echoes, Vampyre Anvil and many more. The tickets are just under £75 for the full weekend, you can also book to stay at the University as well, which can work out cheaper than staying at a hotel.

You can visit the Infest Festival website here, there is a link to purchasetickets on the site as well.

You can visit the Infest Festival Facebook page here.

ArcTanGent: Genres – Alternative Metal, Amplifier Worship, Sludge Metal, Mathcore and many more.

On 17th-19th of August, Bristol will be invaded by the ArcTanGent Festival, which is sort of the same as Damnation, but outdoors and over three days.  The line-up this year has three exclusive UK shows from Explosions in the Sky, Converge and God Is An Astronaut, as well as performances of Sikth, Russian Circles, Boris, Bossk, Future of the Left (is all forgiven now?), Tesseract, TTNG and many other acts.  A two day ticket will cost £87+, a three day ticket will cost £105+ and there are various options, VIP packages and all that sort of jazz.  It does look like a spectacular line up this year, could the one of the best of the summer.

You can visit the ArcTanGent festival here, there is a page for purchasing tickets on the site.

You can visit the ArcTanGent festival Facebook event page here.

Camden Rocks: Genres: Alternative Rock, Classic Rock, Acoustic, Indie Rock and many more

This festival is one that I am hoping to attend one day – 250 bands, 25 venues, in the legendary Camden area of London on 3rd June, Camden Rocks will bring so many bands that it hurts!  Acts include The Virginmarys, Andy Cairns from Therapy?, Ruts, Feeder, Love Zombie, Moses, Imperial Leisure, Hey! Hello! and many more.  It is £39 (plus a booking fee I guess) and should be one hell of a party.

You can visit the Camden Rocks website here, there is a page to purchasetickets on this site.

You can visit the Camden Rocks festival Facebook page here.

Coxhoe Festival: Genre – Folk

One of the smaller festivals on this page, this festival is ran by the people behind Driven Serious, one of our favourite bands and it happens in Country Durham on 17th June.  Tickets for this folk festival cost £15 (plus a booking fee) and the line-up includes Driven Serious, Broken Symmetry, Mullholland, Head of Light Entertainment and a few more. 

You can visit the Facebook event page for the Coxhoe Festival here, there is alink to purchase tickets on this page.

Gnaw Festival: Genre – Amplifier Worship

The year’s gathering of all things sonic and noisy!  Well, it will be once the date and venue is announced!  I have been told that it is happening, but they are working on the line-up as we speak.  This Newcastle based noise-fest is something to behold, take ear plugs!

No links for the festival are currently available.

Cotton Clouds Festival: Genre - Indie, Rap, Pop, Rock

Cotton Clouds Festival is a one day event that is happening on 12th August 2017, at Saddleworth Cricket Club, Greenfield, Oldham, Greater Manchester.  It is a three-stage affair, the main stage is headlined by The Coral, the Jimmy’s stage is headlined by PINS and the Tim Peaks Diner is headlined by The Rhythm Method.  Other acts playing include The G-O-D, The Whip, Hello Operator, the Sugarhill Gang and any more.  Tickets cost around £42 (plus booking fees) with concessions for kids.

You can visit the Cotton Clouds Festival website here and you can also purchasetickets from the website as well.

You can visit the Cotton Clouds Festival Facebook page here.

Supersonic Festival: Genre – Bad crap crazy, Noise, Alternative

From the 16-18 June, Super Sonic Festival opens its door for all people to see the strange and wonder.  This is not a festival for the faint hearted as it contains such delight as Melt Banana, Zonal, Anna Von Hausswolff, Ex Easter Island Head, Pigs X 7, Richard Dawson and many more.  It takes place in Birmingham, England and a weekend pass will cost £90 and I would recommend heading to this one if you have any interest in how the underground sounds.

You can visit the Super Sonic Festival website here, you can also purchase tickets on the website as well.

You can visit the Super Sonic Festival Facebook page here.

Lindisfarne Festival: Genre – Indie, Dance, Rock

As summer comes to a close, Lindisfarne in Northumberland will hold its festival from 31st August to 3rd September.  Acts playing this year include The View, The Fratellis, The Pale White, Colonel Mustard, Talk Like Tigers, The Lancashire Hotpots, The B Hives and many more.  It is a beautiful place and I cannot think of a better way to end the summer, tickets start from £55.

You can visit the Lindisfarne Festival website here, where you can also purchasetickets for the event.

You can visit the Lindisfarne Festival Facebook here.

Hardwick Live: Genre – Pop, Rock, Indie, Dance

Another North East based festival, this time at Hardwick Hall, Sedgefield, County Durham.  Headlined by Ocean Colour Scene, it also has performances from Fun Lovin’ Criminals, the Buzzcocks. Cattle & Cane, the Brand New Heavies and many more.  This is another festival which has alternative faculties for kids and that sort of thing, but it is good to see another show in the North East going from strength to strength.  Tickets for adults start at around £49, with optional extras attached.

You can visit the Hardwick Festival website here, which has links forpurchasing tickets.

There is no Facebook page for this event.

Rebellion Festival: Genre - Punk as fuck!

The one that almost got away!  Thanks to Sue Welford for reminding me about  (knew there was one I missed).  This 4 day punk festival at the Winter Gardens, Blackpool, UK is the premier Punk event in the UK, it has seen some legendary bands and this year is no exception.  You have the likes of Bad Religion, Pennywise, Face to Face, Richie Ramone, UK Subs, 999, The Vapors, Skids, Saves and other acts.  Over 250 bands for £160 and more mayhem than a night out in Newcastle (or any other place to be honest).

You can visit the Rebellion Festival website here, there is a link to purchase tickets on the site as well.

You can visit the Rebellions Festival Facebook page here.

So that is some of the festivals happening this year, no matter which genre of music you are into, there is definitely something out there for you.  Get yourself along to one of them, you are bound to have a great day!

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