Ben Walton picks out ten of his favourite albums of 2015
10. Metz - II
Toronto's Metz returned with their obviously titled second outing this year, offering up a relentless 30 minute blitzkrieg of feedback riddled guitars and pounding drums. They didn't make any huge changes to their usual formula, but II adds some impressive new tunes to the bands back catalogue, including the unhinged opener Acetate, the aggressive dirge of Spit You Out and the blistering I.O.U. Metz are an incredible force and are fast cementing themselves as, if not the best guitar band on the planet right now, then certainly the noisiest.
9. Ringo Deathstarr - Pure Mood
For a few years now, Ringo Deathstarr have plied their trade as a solid, if fairly unremarkable shoegaze act, but on Pure Mood - their third album in four years - their time spent touring with The Smashing Pumpkins has rubbed off, and the grunge dial has been turned all the way around to 10. There's big riffs aplenty splashed all over Heavy Metal Suicide and guitar histrionics in Guilt. This album is a huge step forward for Ringo Deathstarr.
Continue reading: Ben Walton's Top Albums Of 2015
Edinburgh five-piece Idlewild have now launched a video for their latest single 'Every Little Means Trust'; a melancholy anthem taken from their highly praised recently released album 'Everything Ever Written', out on Empty Words records.
The video features a hitchhiker (played by Canadian actor Jay Baruchel, voice star of 'How to Train Your Dragon') on a lonely country moor, apparently looking back on a bonfire party and various other countryside antics that he had with a girl. Much of the video is shot with the effect of badly focused film, emphasising that sense of memories. The solemn guitar and steady drums give it a real folk-rock vibe, especially when you add in the anthemic vocal harmonies. By the time it gets to the chorus, any listener is hooked.
Recently nominated for a Scottish Album of the Year Award, Idlewild are scheduled to perform at Glastonbury 2015 alongside the likes of I Am Kloot, King Creosote and Lamb, following their weekend at Cheltenham's 2000trees Festival in July. It also comes ahead of their appearance at Bingley Music Live in September. Previous singles from the band's latest album are 'Collect Yourself' and 'Come On Ghost', which are just as much worth checking out.
As one of the most prolific groups of the late 1990s and early 2000s, last December's news Idlewild had recorded a new album felt like the icing on a mouthwatering Christmas cake. Having been on a self-imposed hiatus since the early part of 2010, it was always touch and go whether Idlewild would make another record together, particularly with Roddy Woomble's solo career having taken off during the interim period.
Nevertheless, there was also a sense of trepidation. For starters, the Idlewild that recorded their most recent long player, 2009's 'Post Electric Blues', were coming from an entirely different place musically to the one that recorded their first, 1998's 'Captain'. Forget the personnel involved; aside from Woomble, fellow original members Rod Jones and Colin Newton also play on the new record. It's clear from the direction taken since the departure of long-standing bass player Bob Fairfoull after 2002's 'The Remote Part' Idlewild were mutating into a new entity.
So it shouldn't come as too much of a surprise that 'Everything Ever Written', their eighth studio album and first in five years, follows a similar path to that of its last three predecessors. With newcomers Andrew Mitchell (bass) and Lucci Rossi (keyboards) on board alongside the aforementioned three mainstays, it's a mature, focused yet overtly safe record that announces their return with a whimper rather than scream. While the songs themselves sound polished, there's an air of politeness surrounding their existence that suggests the fire of yore has disappeared for good.
Continue reading: Idlewild - Everything Ever Written Album Review
Idlewild return this year with their album 'Everything Ever Written'. It's their eight album and one that crosses genres from Folk to Indie then American and back again. But what is undeniably true is that it is pure Idlewild at their best, back on form and with the addition of new members Andrew Mitchell and Luciano Rossi, they're a band reborn.
Guitarist Rod Jones answers some questions about their return and their plans for the future.
CM: How does it feel to be back?
I: Really good thanks. Its been a couple of years we've been writing and recording but since we announced the new record and tour the support and reaction has been great. Its not something we expected and its incredibly heartwarming to see the enthusiasm from our fans. It really feels like a new band now, with our very talented new members Andrew and Luciano and the possibilities for the future musically are limitless and exciting.
Continue reading: Idlewild - Interview Jan 2015
Idlewild - A look into The Remote Part of Idelwild (Gavin Fox interview)
The amiable and laid back Irishman Grant Fox, joined Scotland’s Idlewild from Irish rock band Turn, approximately two and a half years ago to replace bassist Bob Fairfoull and has cemented his status as an earnest and genuine member of the band ever since.He kindly took time out from sound checking fortheir showat the Manchester Academy to give us a peek into the world of one ofthe UK's most honest and sincere musical outfits.Their fourthand latest album ‘Warnings/Promises’ was the first one written collectively as a five piece, as oppose to front man Roddy Woomble instigating matters, so do they feel more of a unit and has their song writing process drastically changed?
Continue reading: Idlewild - A look into The Remote Part of Idelwild (Gavin Fox interview)