Spotlight issue 35 (April 2006)

The Laddz - Chant Like an English Fan

T: One of the more innovative attempts to capture the hearts, minds, and above all vocal chords of the nation's football fans, this is a rather clever reworking of the old Bangles standard "Walk Like an Egyptian" It's a lot less painful than hearing Jimmy Pursey's makeover of "Hurry Up Harry" where he reinterprets the words "We're going down the pub" with, predictably, "We're gonna win the cup". At least this makes an effort to inject something new.

N: As an Englishman I can't really put this down. As has already been said, this is an effort to capture the hearts and minds in the run up to the most important football tournament in the last 4 years. As we can all agree, there have been a lot worse, and having read the lyrics, they're pretty well conceived. Get behind this one and repeat 'til England win the world cup. Ooh whey oh. 8/10

Learn the lyrics - click here - Sing the song (Go to the website below) and join the band on their very own myspace.




Soular - Waiting For Tomorrow (Centari Entertainment) 25/04/2006

Tipped by college radio play following their 2004 release of "Time and Space", this is the ambitious, inspired collection of new songs from Soular, and with its release, the truth that the US can no longer keep this band to themselves.

T: It would seem that this album has turned you into a bell ringer...

N: What is that? A veiled form of abuse?

T: No, it's flat out, GENUINE abuse. After all, pfft, how many people who read this site are likely to be bell ringers anyway. I was referring to the fact that you appeared to be doing a "bell ringing dance" to this music. How the hell you can associate bell-ringing with Muse's evident American counterparts?

N: I was milking a virtual cow. And don't try to read anything into that!

T: You seemed to be enjoying it anyway.

N: Yeah. For an unsigned band, this is quite an eye opener, or should that be ear trumpet?

T: Well, it's quite majestic in places, this album, and the Matt Bellamy style musings (ouch, sorry) are effective enough to hold your attention for a full album, so that can only be a good thing. The Morris Dancing thing must have subsided a bit by now, surely? 8/10

web site

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Johnnie Burton - Johnnie Burton (Unsigned)

Born and raised in the east end of Hollywood, Johnny Burton and her band it is said are carving out a niche for themselves " an area few female artists have occupied", performing rock music fused with art-punk, roots, pop and poetry. It certainly sounds impressive, but how did the AD team find this debut release of the girl set to become queen?

T: Blimey, this is a cross between loads of legendary female singers, probably most notably a certain Patti Smith, but there are also elements of Courtney Love, Juliette Lewis and The Licks, Pat Benatar, Queenadreena and even The Slits hidden amongst an impressive array of gutsy, infectious tunes that would be pretty much perfect for those of us who haven't been able to do any moshing lately due to a drought of "moshable" bands. Johnnie has definitely got that extra something and her music is extremely sexy as well as powerful. Great stuff.

N: You forgot to mention Liz Phair, L7 and certainly less Sheryl Crow. Johnnie Burton kicks proverbial arse and does her bit for feminism with her female wile. Music that's very immediate and certainly "in yer face", I can certainly see this filed along with her contemporaries. 8/10



The Treat - In Technicolour (Unsigned)

T: Well, whilst I like what the band are doing, mixing Led Zeppelin with Wire and calling in Uriah Heap every now and again, I really DON'T like the production on this album. It sounds way too clean, yet somehow sounds rather muddy at the same time. I realise that's something of a misnomer but hey, I know what I mean! The songs are well constructed, and I can see many of the comparisons made previously by various webzine writers (The Clash, AC/DC and Van Halen in particular) so it's a release that makes me want to see the band live, because I suspect they will come across far better than they do on CD.

N: To be honest, listening here, I found this a little too "comic book". The songs just came across with less impact than I felt they deserved, almost as if this band could perform to a script, somewhat like the Monkees did in the sixties. But hey, it got THAT band noticed! 6/10



Computerman - No More Broken Hearts (Must Destroy)

T: This Nottingham band would be perfect bedfellows (musically only, I hasten to add) for Leicester's own up and coming stars The Screening, and if we could add our very own label signings Hicks Miligan-Prophecy to the gig listing, that would be one heck of a good night. This band is one great adrenaline rush with some storming tunes, emotionally charged vocals and effective use of electronica, and they will surely satisfy the needs of every music lover generously.

N: Three songs presented on this demo that possess good vocals and musical presentation, a lesson to all that the less work an unsigned band give their audience to conceive a completed product, the easier their path may be. 9/10



Trouble Over Tokyo - 1000 (Tokyotron Records)

"Trouble Over Tokyo" is the sound of a boy trying to become a man, without killing the boy". So says Toph Taylor, the chap behind the project.

T: In other words, he's trying to get shot of his virginity and to have a damn good time before he turns 30. Sorry, that was a bit mean wasn't it, but that's just how my mind worked when I read that description. You know what though, the other description here that says "If you threw Bjork and Michael Jackson in a blender you'd pretty much be there. But with less blood" is about as good a reference I've ever heard. Perhaps it all goes a little too AOR at times for my liking, but there's no denying the wealth of talent these guys possess and there is a depth to the music here that is rarely found in today's artists.

N: Listening to this album, you're right. The further you proceed, the deeper it becomes. Well conceived and produced songs. My only regret is that we never received a tracklisting from which to quote. Never mind, a thoroughly absorbing listen. 8/10



JMF - December Demo (Sundissentialstomper)

A very tidy mix Cd! Some great tracks too. Not the biggest fan of the harder elements of dance music but I found this to be a very good blend of hard pounding techno tracks and more vocal structured tracks. All the tracks were of a high quaility in that the production etc was superb. Massive swelling anthems mixed with relentless pummeling beats and subtle drops and breakdowns.

The mix itself builds well and flows superbly with long gliding mixes and shorter in yer face blends! S&M for the eardrums!!!

Good stuff! 8/10

Nic Caesar

We don't actually have a website for this artist, but if you'd like further information - pass me your requests and I can put you in touch - contact editor


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