Well there have actually been a couple of things about the blog to update you on, for a change. First of all my review of The Pianist which you may have read before, was posted up on my friend Tyson Carters site Head in a Vice as part of his iMDB Top 250 challenge, you should swing over and check out his blog if you haven’t before. Following on from that I have revamped the theme of the blog, the Vertigo theme was nice but had limited accessability and I think ultimately put people off from reading my stuff so with the new theme we’ve got all the categories for you to choose from up at the top we’ve got my most recent posts on the home page and some useful stuff for finding your own way around in the sidebar, hopefully you’ll find it much easier to read what you want to read! And to atone for losing the film themed theme we’ve got some nice Lynch red curtains to back all my posts, hope you like it.
From now on these weekly updates are going to include some more of my creative writing to make them more worthwhile rather than just being me telling you to look at my other stuff so I recommend for you to keep looking at these posts to see a bit more of more fictional output. For this week though you’ve got four posts to get through to make up for the fact I only did two last week, first of all you’ve got my review of The Joy Formidable’s second album Wolf’s Law. Then there was my conclusions on the multi-Oscar nominated Zero Dark Thirty. I also managed to get hod of new Foals album Holy Fire and got round to reviewing that. And finally, I had a look at Cronenberg’s mind-bending latest Cosmopolis. I hope you enjoy have a flick through those, please leave me any comments you may have.
And this week I’m going to leave you with what can only be described as a huge tune from Thom Yorke’s new supergroup, Atoms for Peace, the albums due out on the 25th so keep your eyes peeled for the review:
If you’ve been a reader of the blog you might have read my last post on The Joy Formidable which you should be able to find on the band plug page. It’s been a couple of years now since the band burst on to the scene with their debut The Big Roar, a record which shattered my expectations and make me take notice of the Welsh three piece who pack a lot more bite than the majority of indie bands out there. Last week the group returned with their second album Wolf’s Law.
The albums got a lot of similarities with their last one, juxtaposing grungy riffs with more awkward indie sensibilities and again this record really does pack a punch. It’s not hard to see why these guys are now regarded so highly. My personal favourite tracks are the heavier ones in particular The Maw Maw Song which feels like the closest thing they’ve got to match some of the best tracks on their first album. But ultimately when compared to their debut Wolf’s Law just doesn’t quite match up for me. When The Big Roar came out I’d never heard of these guys and they demanded that I listened to them, over and over again. With Wolf’s Law I haven’t felt that again, I’ve enjoyed, I’ve listened to it a few times but it’s not grabbed my attention enough and it’s release date was a stupid one being one week before the new Biffy and three before Foals two very similar but more established bands. Wolf’s Law is good but it’s not great.
So after managing to do two blog posts this afternoon I am just about getting my weekly update on time, think I should be able to get schedule better this next week. So first of all this week there was, of course, the new Tarantino film, Django Unchained get reading that one and please leave any comments you may have on it. Next I wrote a post on a group that I have been being intrigued hugely by for the last few weeks, the bizarre Die Antwoord. The finally I did I quick sum-up of how much I enjoyed playing Dead Space 2. Hope you enjoy reading all of those.
This week I’ll leave you with a choice because I’ve got two exciting albums to review in the next seven days, the first is The Joy Formidable’s Wolf’s Law and the second is Biffy Clyro’s Opposites so here’s a song from each, watch this space:
Back in early 2011 I was on the prowl for some new music, while scrolling through some new releases on iTunes I came across the release of The Joy Formidable’s debut album The Big Roar. I listened to a couple of track snippets and thought they sounded like a decent indie band so I bought the album. What I got from The Big Roar, though, was so much more than I was expecting. The trio from North Wales can hardly even be called an indie band really. Their album is a powerhouse of indie, rock and at times metal and grunge.
The group are not afraid to just burst into an assault of sound. Songs like ‘Austere’ and ‘A Heavy Abacus’ spend a lot of time rocking your socks off with a cacophony of guitars and drums. Their sound is made even more impressive by the fact that they’re only a three piece and they still manage to replicate this stuff live. It also speaks to their musicianship that with only three members they can be so diverse. As well as being able to burst out your speakers they show, as well, that they know how to be sensitive. For example in ‘Llaw = Wall’ they use one of the boys voices creating a calming juxtaposition from Ritzy Bryan’s usual vocals. The Big Roar genuinely roars.
The two songs they’ve released ahead of their new album, Wolf’s Law due in January, show that they’re still pushing boundaries and creating great new music. ‘Cholla’ is perhaps the bands grungiest song to date with a big rock riff blaring throughout, whereas, ‘Wolf’s Law’ shows, again, their more gentle side and sensitive approach. The Joy Formidable are a band that actually have something fresh, whenever you think you might be able to pigeon hole them they’ll show you something that proves you can’t, and they manage to shatter through a number of different genres. These guys a band to watch. Watch this space for an album review in Jan.