Archive for February, 2011

As regular MM readers will know, singer-songwriter Jason Ward has found great favour with Mrs M for his acerbic song Bless You, which lyrically was particularly appropriate at the time of its release.

In advance of his new album Last Time I Was There, he is releasing Good Night as a single via iTunes (out tomorrow) and also offering up an older song Oh Man for free as well, the latter is a song he describes thus: “Oh Man was originally recorded five years ago, but I’ve since re-recorded it, and it’s kind of a Johnny Cash meets the Beatles two minute epitome of catchiness.”

You can stream Good Night below and buy it from iTunes from 1st March. You can download Oh Man for free here, whenever the fancy takes you.

You can also visit Jason’s own blog site here for more details on the album release.


Download Jason Ward – Oh Man mp3

Download Jason Ward – Bless You mp3 (from Graceful Bow EP)

When we received an e-mail from Adam Scumbag about his band Scumbag Philosopher it had to be worth five minutes of our time. He was suggesting we might like the band’s video for their forthcoming self-titled single coming from their er, self-titled album. It adds up to (we think), a song called Scumbag Philosopher from a band called Scumbag Philosopher from an album called Scumbag Philosopher. So at least that’s clear!

Anyway we watched it and for once the song lived up to the name. It is a fabulously primitive, sub three minute, ranting gem in the tribal style of The Fall or The A-Frames with shades of another MM fave, Victorian English Gentlemen’s Club.

Apparently “it takes aim at the type of relentlessly and pointlessly opinionated bigot that we all know. Whoever or whatever they are, if you just want them to shut the fuck up or fuck off and die, Scumbag Philosopher is that gulped down primal scream set to music. And, better still, in the song Dave dies a painful death alone (and probably lays undiscovered and gets eaten by an alsatian).”

Watch and enjoy!


The band’s self-titled album is out on 28th March, you can pre-order from the label Words On Music.

Visit the band’s website here.

The Heavenly States will be releasing their brand new EP titled Oui Camera Oui on 19th April.

The EP marks the band’s first album with Hippies Are Dead Records and is the follow-up to their critically acclaimed 2008 album, Delayer.

We have the EP’s opening song for you, Model Son is a foot-stomping rocker with added rasp, rhythm and groove recalling Bob Seger, Talking Heads and Modest Mouse.

In fact the EP features all of the band’s musical traits: hooks, sing-a-longs, the lush string and keyboard arrangements of Genevieve Gagon, ample melodies, the huge drumming of Jeremy Gagon, and the raucous guitar playing of lead singer Ted Nesseth.

Oui Camera Oui is the band’s first in a planned series of EP installments which will include sister songs, prequels, epilogues and other forms to create connections across several releases.

Visit the band’s website here.

Download The Heavenly States – Model Son mp3 (from Oui Camera Oui EP)

Introducing…Street Chant

Posted: February 27, 2011 in Alternative, Indie, Music, Rock

New Zealand rockers Street Chant could easily have never existed. Emily Littler was a teenage binge drinker straight out of high school with an infernal itch to be on stage. Billie Rogers played in a band she hated. Every time they ran into each other, they would promise to get together and jam. One day, quite unexpectedly, it happened. Right away, Emily realized that she wasn’t much into jamming.

But after the usual new band ups and downs, they emerged with a sound that is both taut and direct, and the band travelled to CMJ in October where they played a handful of shows with acts such as The Crystal Stilts and The Mad Scene and created quite a stir for themselves.

Street Chant are also playing at SXSW 2011.

Download Street Chant – The Fatigues mp3 (from Means)

Gospel Claws & Kinch are each celebrating SXSW 2011 with the release of new singles!

With the release of their debut LP C-L-A-W-S in October 2010, Phoenix natives, Gospel Claws had enough soul to spread their “gospel” and enough raw energy to still be called “claws.”

They headed back to the studio last month to record a new single I Can, I Will, which will be released digitally on 1st March.

Download Gospel Claws – I Can, I Will mp3 (from I Can, I Will Single)

Kinch — also Phoenix natives—  write sharp, angular rock songs that burrow into the listener’s ear and refuse to leave, while at the same time penning songs full of warmth, maybe a little bit of naiveté, and — dare we say? — even a touch of earnestness.

Their newest recording is an eleven song album called The Incandenza, which, true to the band’s bookish roots, is named after the family in David Foster Wallace’s Infinite Jest, which helped serve as the album’s inspiration. They promise they’re not trying to be pretentious on purpose; it just happens sometimes when you name your band after a character from Ulysses.

Once, I Was a Mainsail, is the first track made available off of The Incandenza. It should be listened to loudly.

Download Kinch – Once I Was A Mainsail mp3 (from The Incandenza)

Rest is a new mp3 from Parts & Labor’s forthcoming release Constant Future.

The song perfectly encapsulates the band’s ability to take elements of noise and turn them into a truly infectious pop song.

You can pre-order the CD from Insound here and instantly get mp3 downloads of the whole album.

Download Parts & Labor – Rest mp3 (from Constant Future)

Download Parts & Labor – Constant Future mp3 (from Constant Future)

Denton, Texas four-piece Silver Shampoo will shortly be releasing their debut album Higher & Higher.

It promises to be a top quality fuzzed out, reverbed up, psychotic blast of glamorous garage rock, especially if taster track Streaks Of Satan is anything to go by…

…We hope it is!

Visit their MySpace here.

You can pre-order the album from Rough Trade here.

Download Silver Shampoo – Streaks Of Satan mp3 (from Higher & Higher)

Another country. Having returned from “The North” as people in “The South” are wont to refer to it as, I managed to get past border control at Birmingham, with my rounder sounding vowels and soft Southern ways. A misfit now in both parts!

There’s lots of things about heading home that make me feel rather wistful – and so much of it has no real relevance for anyone else in the Mackerel clan. Places you went to when you were too young to be going there anyway (don’t tell the parents!), loud and lairy fun fair rides that the sprats rather fancy (and you went to when you should have been at school), awesome fish and chips where you step outside to have the wind whip your breath away before the salt and vinegar has even had time to crystallise on your tongue. A big-hearted place where people are kinder to strangers, much more straight talking and generally a lot bloody funnier. The place where I grew up.

So now I’m back and a little bit of a fish out of water. The times they are a-changing…yet always a Northern lass at heart.

Mrs Mackerel

Download Woodpigeon – I Live A Lot of Places mp3 (well, just because I like it and it’s a darned good fit).

Incidentally, the photo is borrowed from a blog by Curly called the South Shields Daily Photo. I really hope he doesn’t mind – he’s got some great photos. Spread the word.

New Album from Eddie Spaghetti

Posted: February 25, 2011 in Country, Music, Rock

Can’t say I ever knew much about the Supersuckers, though plenty of others seem to like them, so when I got news of a solo album by former band member Eddie Spaghetti it was his great name (he even has a son called Quattro) that made me bother to find out a bit more.

His third solo effort, Sundowner came out about a week ago and it is one of those straight-up, no frills good ol’ Country albums that can be so refreshingly simple and enjoyable. Take our word for it, this one is!

Check out the beefy honky tonk of Never Thought I Would – it probably has a stool in the local roadhouse and owns it’s own Stetson.

You can order the album from HMV here.

Download Eddie Spaghetti – Never Thought I Would mp3 (from Sundowner)

Introducing…Pet Scenes

Posted: February 24, 2011 in Alternative, Garage, Music, Punk, Rock

Discordant, urgent, brash, visceral, uncompromising, clatter & clang.

And all the better for it.

Welcome to the world of Pet Scenes.

Visit their MySpace here.

Download Pet Scenes – Man Contest mp3

Download Pet Scenes – Easily Fed mp3