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Thursday 30 November 2023

Dolph Chaney - Mug


Another returning hero on IDHAS. I suppose you might consider us generally having a Pop Rock base and so I can tell you that Chicago's Dolph Chaney is probably the nicest musician and man in Pop Rock. Forever modest and appreciative, I'm not sure that he appreciates what a great singer songwriter that he is.

His previous two albums, 2020's Rebuilding Permit and 2021's This Is Dolph Chaney appeared in both of our Best Of Years and now we have Mug. As well as this lyrically being an open your heart affair, the guests also take the songs into unexpected directions.

Firstly multi instrumentalist Nick Berlin adds greatly to album as well as producing and mixing the offering and throughout our lifetime, I can't remember when Bertling hasn't added gold dust to an album. The wonderfully acoustic Cool In The Sunshine is enhanced by the backing vocals of voice of an angel, Gretchen's Wheel's Lindsay Murray. 

The centre piece is the magnificent Piano Pop of Bad Bet with some stunning Piano and Organ from Brian Simms. However, I don't want to give the impression that it is the guests that make the album, because they just enhance it, these are the performances of Dolph Chaney and his songwriting.

From the AOR of Good Luck With All That to the Jangle of How It Really Was. From  the Americana of Love Around You to the urgent back story of Californiagain, Then there is the epic West Coast Rock of Only Hope, a splendid thing that approaches 6 minutes. Ice Cream Embers even enters 80s Pop Rock.

For all the depth on show here, there is something really special when Chaney lets rip. Mr Eli threatens to explode but manages not to detonate. But Celtic (The Mirror) doesn't hold back courtesy of some top notch guitar from Walker Brigade's Jeff Charreaux and the rock out vocal from Chaney.

Mug is one of the great Singer Songwriter albums, lyrically adept, heart warningly melodic and a wonderful production of 13 special songs. Varied, but incredibly well hell together, the songs provide a platform for Chaney to continue to his forward momentum. By The Way, I want one of those mugs.

You can listen to and buy the album here


The Lunar Laugh - In The Black


Oklahoma's The Lunar Laugh get their fourth album review on here, which is a rarity, so there must be something special about them and there is. You can read the previous three here and here and here.They specialise in a sort of Monkees 70s Pop Rock Update with Glam Rock Guitar Solos.

This is most explained by the wonderful Fake It Till We Make It. But throughout the album, Bubblegum Pop isn't too far. Even the twang and Country-ish instrumental vibe of Stranger Than Oz has big hints of 60s Bubblegum.

Pour Votre Santé is a great reminder of the ace 70s Pop Rock bands such as Jigsaw, Pilot and Liverpool Express and has a real popped up Soft Rock feel and an added great Guitar Break that allows the song to change into a more West Coast vocal harmony affair.

Still Gets To Me is great Jangle Pop with flashes of Power Pop, whilst Picture Perfect has a weeping Guitar run, very West Coast, sort of Doolin' Dalton Eagles. Out Of Love is all bop-she-wop 60s let's do the show right here fayre. 

So So Long even has a real 1977 Disco Rock feel accompanied by a Guitar interruption of say The Outlaws. In The Black is a corking gentle melodic joy and I can't think of a band that suit my beloved Big Stir Records more.

You can listen to and buy the album here and it is Bandcamp Friday tomorrow.


Tuesday 28 November 2023

Christmas Songs And Albums


The image isn't me, but it could easily be. 

Just a reminder that we don't do Christmas songs or albums. Never have and never likely to. Personally, I can't be doing with all the forced jollity and cover songs. We are also an all round year place, so I don't see the point of songs that appeal for a month and then get in the way when people are backtracking the reviews. That also applies to Listening To This Week

But on a site opinion, as artists may relate to you, we have a big backlog of album reviews to get through in December and intend to hopefully start the best of year earlier than the Mid January onwards run that we normally cover. We aren't one for rules. Our only rule for the Best 100 Albums is that they have to have been reviewed on here. 

So if we don't get a move on, there will be some that we want to appear that won't. Listening To This Week upcoming releases also dictate that there aren't masses of slots left on that prior to Christmas.

Sorry and all that, but there are plenty of other sites that will cover your jingling bells.


The Smivets - How We Fade


Last Year, I discovered The Smivets completely by surprise and reviewed the Mountain Highway album here. It was an album that came from nowhere on a new artist site that I had never visited before and is so good that it made the Best 100 Albums Of The Year.

The Smivets are a one man affair, Uttoxeter's Steve Smith who describes himself as a music dabbler. You really would think this is a group, it so well performed, arranged and produced. How We Fade shows that Mountain Highway was no flash in the pan.

This is glorious Rock, genre defying rock, largely 70s orientated and covering everything from Pop Rock to Classic Rock and all in between. Not only is it instrumentally ace, but the album is incredibly lyrically adept and it is the genre crossing that adds to the interest.

The opener, Galaxies, is awesome blasting through Indie Rock, Psych, Prog and Melodic Rock. Keep The Change is another monster affair, this time more of a Classic Rock bent. To The Fires is top notch Prog whilst England Sleeps is West Coast Rock as if it were performed by Lindisfarne.

Alpha Male Arse borders on Psych Rock, yet My Car's A New Pair Of Shoes is closest to Merseybeat. Cutting The Cord is more getting it together in the country late 60s Rock. Tulip sounds more than a little Gabriel era Genesis, although acoustically so.

How We Fade is a crackerjack of an album. It is a Rock album and not all of our followers lean towards something so Classic Rock. But this is such an inventive and well put together that it just demands your attention. 2 out of 2 in the IDHAS Best Of Years methinks.

You can listen to and buy the album here.


No Tears - Heart Shaped Eyes


Power Pop has suffered in the past from fans who wanted it to be particularly one thing and artists and reviewers who didn't want to be associated with it because of this. I've been vociferous about this as I believe the genre is a broad church and there is no doubt that the excellence of the music was lost in a wave of pointless fall outs.

Its revival of late has been on the backs of the new younger breed of artists, most who don't really care about what's gone before, most have probably never heard of Power Pop until their music was deemed so. This revival is just as melodic and riff driven but there is a slightly harder rockier edge.

So it is refreshing to listen to an album that is unashamedly Power Pop. Retro vibe wise, indeed reminiscent of the great 80s Power Pop when keyboards became a part of the mix and No tears have such a lot in common with say Donnie Iris. 

No Tears is Kristianstad's Christoffer Karlsson and Heart Shaped Eyes is a wonderful joyous listen. If you like Power Pop, you will love this. There is also a side issue to be discussed about how a country like Sweden continues to produce so much great Guitar Pop.

Just listen to Electric Eyes and you will be hooked. The song has everything from the opening riff through the chorus and hooks that you can ever need. Even when Karlsson deviates from the template, it is to some other period of the genre.

Echo In My Head is pure UK New Wave with a big hint of Glam Rock. Get Away even gets close to The Glitter Band. Broken Mirror adds some great Sax to its 60s feel and the background could be Wizzard. It is left the two closing songs to really divert your attention.

The Silence Is Speaking is largely instrumental, 80s style and a little melancholic. Without Your Love is Grand Ole Opry fairy and a fine duet with Beatrice Rosdahl. But is the Power Pop that will grab listeners most, particularly as there has been so little like this lately.

It is also interesting that I discovered the album via a single submission for Listening To This Week with little known about IDHAS. I think some think that LTTW is a separate part of what we do here, but the two are interlinked and it has really opened up our audience.

You can listen to and buy the album here


Monday 27 November 2023

Listening To This Week Playlist

Listening To This Week has hit its second year. How time flies! Initially set up for this Album Review site to pay attention to the great singles around, it has become surprisingly popular and is probably the most work we do here with all the listening and compiling.

We are still an Album review site, but what LTTW has done is bring a whole new audience to I Don't Hear A Single and this audience is as equally engaged as our regular followers and they listen to the archive here. So we win all around. IDHAS is as popular as ever and new artists get the chance to bring their music to a very interested audience.

27 songs this week. There is no song preference in track order, just what we think flows.  I do hope that you can listen to all the songs across this week. The last listed is as great as the first and you have all week to listen.

This weekly playlist is solely for submissions, not the usual stuff that we dig out ourselves. All embeds open in new windows to aid scrolling. Links to the artists will also appear on I Don't Hear A Single Social Media sites over the next 24 hours. This will help you to discover more about the artists who appear here.

Steven Wright-Mark - Change

Perry Moon Band - Sounds Of The City

The Sonic Redemption - Johnny23

M'Grasker - She’s Drugs

Fresh Art - Come In Waves

Transistors - High Hopes

The Violet Parade - Soldier

The Regulars - Wastin' Away

War & Peace Party - Maggie Knows

Papa Satch - I'll Be There

Tonight's Hero - Nothing New Under the Sun

The Pierce Kingans - Procrastination

Makeshift Stopgap - After the Storm

Megayacht - Caviar Eyes

The Avelons - Blondie

Dream On - Flashing Blade

Stanmore - Waiting

Camping Lagon - Slotche

Joe Nacco - Who You Once Were

Zach Madden - Patience

Juppe - Andy, I Have Your Lighter

The Fourth Wall - Never A Part

Mortigi Tempo - Full Sail Vertigo

Shoulder Season - Why Would I?

Carl Dolphin - Head Gasket

Psychic Shakes - Little One

Sherbet Tone - Late Summer's Eve (Rustling Leaves)


Sunday 26 November 2023

The World Famous - Totally Famous


Imagine that Not Lame still produced a newsletter and list of new releases. If so then this debut album would certainly feature heavily. The Los Angeles five piece nail the 90s Pop Rock that we know and love. If I tell you that three of the five are guitarists, you will know that you are in for a treat.

There used to be a cascade of this type of sound, but year by year, that market seems to have dried up into a trickle. Think prime time Fountains Of Wayne, mid period Teenage Fanclub and many that drifted at the edges of the 90s Power Pop Revival.

There is also a West Coast mellow rock vibe on more than one occasion and nods towards the great UK 70s Pop Rock albums. There is also a tendency to change genres part way through a song which is fascinating and splendid.

For instance, Delinquents starts all Weezer and then unexpectedly turns into something more 70s Country Rock. This sort of thing just adds to the enjoyment and variety and there is plenty of variety. Hollywood Pawn has massive hints of prime time UK Glam Rock. 

Lipstick Trick is 70s Melodic Pop to a tee, Heartburst is even a little Lemonheads with dashes of modern day TFC and Love Song For A Lost Friend mixes 90s Slacker Rock with big heaps of Classic Rock and reminds me a lot of a rocked up Dropkick.

There's also a real wit in many of the lyrics when they could easily use the throwaway I Love You type in other hands. There's also a real Jangle Pop joy about Danvers Opening. In future years, this will be looked upon as one of the great debut Pop Rock albums. I'm a bit confused about the album cover though, seems more Metal than Guitar Pop. 

You can listen to and buy the album here. It is also available on Cassette which is a format that I don't intend to return to as I haven't got enough pencils at IDHAS House.


Odd Robot - Deathmates


I've reviewed the last two Odd Robot albums and still absolutely love both. You can read my words on 2017's A Late Night Panic here and 2018's Amnesiastic here. The latter appeared high up in our Best 100 Albums Of The Year.

After the rapid turnaround of those two albums, it has been five years since for the latest. There are still some who refer to them as a Pop Punk when there has been little inkling of that for a while. Amnesiastic was really a New Wave Power Pop album.

2023 sees a much wider remit. The Power Pop is still alive and well, but there are additional journeys at times into 80s Guitar Pop with killer keyboard riffs and American Rock and Roll in an American Grafiti (or if you prefer Porky's!) soundtrack sort of way.

Songs are largely on the short side, not in a run out of ideas way, but in a say what you want to say and move on to the next song. What is key is that every song glistens with melody and sheer catchiness. I can't pick out any dud amongst the 17 songs. 

This makes it hard to pick out individual gems as you can miss out equal joy, I know I bang on about the liberal use of the word fuck in songs for no apparent reason, but You're A Fucking Nightmare is a gem of a song, all riff and charm in a poppier Green Day way.

Second Hand Noose is great singalong twanging affair whilst Let's Start This Over has that late 50s vibe that I mentioned earlier. Anti Revolution is a great 80s Pop duet with The Bombpops Poli van Dam which has a rapid pace and a great keyboard interlude.

Fake Warm Fuzzies Are Still Warm Fuzzies is great New Wave with a real early Costello vibe and California Emptiness is a big nod to the band's roots and shorter pants days. Take A Look At Yourself, Sinner is a crackerjack Pop Rock song.

There is even room for a Big Ballad, yes I did say Big Ballad, in Alone Together In The Sand and they nail that. Lost Inside Yr Ocean is one of the best things that you will hear this year and instrumentally as a little Jeff Lynne feel.

It is really difficult to pick out individual songs as any of there will grace your record player, Santa Ana  most be very proud of this lot. No doubt at all that this will be high up in our End Of Year. It is a terrific album, Go Buy It Now!

You can listen to and buy the album here. It is available on Vinyl on the excellent Wiretap Records label here,


Tuesday 21 November 2023

The Pozers - Something Pop (Name Your Price)


The Pozers return for Album Number 8 and Jim Richey's scuzzed up Power Pop vehicle is in rude health.

For an album such as this, you can't get through it without a reference to Cheap Trick and Alison With An Edge is Da Trick to a tee with a false ending that completely fooled me. From the opening on the opener you know you are in for a treat.

And You Love begins all Baroque and 70s Easy Listening then bursts into a killer riff that absolutely hooks you and the quality goes on and on from that point. Make Up lands somewhere between Classic Rock and UK Glam Rock, splendidly so.

It's All About You bursts out the blocks at a rapid pace with added Thin Lizzy light riffs and adds a George Harrison 80s style. If I Asked You Once Again is a Ballad, but that doesn't tell the whole story as the Vocal is very Zappa like.

Ease Off My Heart mixes Jangle Pop with 60s UK Beat and Missing You (Missing Me) is all 60s Happy Clappy, let's do the show right here. What You Do To Me even flirts with 80s Film Soundtrack Rock. Her Facade even flirts with Doo Wop and has a real 70s UK slurred vocal.

There's even the bonus of four additional Acoustic versions from the ten songs which showcases the songs in a very different unexpected light. Something Pop isn't as in your face as previous Pozers albums and this allows Richey to show that he is far more than up and at 'em.

You can listen to and buy the album here.


Diners - DOMINO


Diners' sixth album fully enters Power Pop after heading in that direction on the previous two with a wonderful blend of mellow 70s Pop Rock. Assisted by Power Pop maestro Mo Troper and Guitarist, Brenden Ramirez. Blue Broderick nails the genre.

There was a time that I was really noted for Power Pop, but the days are a little behind me. However this doesn't mean that I can't appreciate the genre and I can honestly still say that I know great Power Pop and this is really great Power Pop.

It has everything you need. Big choruses, killer riffs and wall to wall melody. Foot tapping singalong joy. So What veers towards the 60s and you sense a little Surf Rock trying to get out. Yet Someday I'll Go Surfing is not a bit Surf, more 70s UK Wave Pop, a song that prime time Blondie would not be ashamed of.

From My Pillow is great West Coast Bubblegum and Wisdom is almost a show song, you can even imagine Laurel And Hardy singing it. More than a little yes haw campfire. But it is the Power Pop that you hear for. 

And I don't think that you'll hear a better PP song this year than The Power. Working On My Dreams follows suit, very first half of the 80s US in feel. I Don't Think About You The Way I Used To is even bottled up Teenage Heartbreak and adds a great fuzzed up Guitar Solo.

There's even time for a big Easy Listening Pop Rock Ballad with Your Eyes Look Like Christmas. There is not a bum note in sight across the whole album. DOMINO is the sort of album that appeared regularly. Why they don't now, I know not. Splendid Stuff!

You can listen to and buy the album here.


Monday 20 November 2023

Listening To This Week Playlist

A monster 28 songs for your listening delight. There is no song preference in track order, just what we think flows.  I do hope that you can listen to all the songs across this week. The last listed is as great as the first and you have all week to listen.

This weekly playlist is solely for submissions, not the usual stuff that we dig out ourselves. All embeds open in new windows to aid scrolling. Links to the artists will also appear on I Don't Hear A Single Social Media sites over the next 24 hours. This will help you to discover more about the artists who appear here.

Demob Happy – Run Baby Run

The Gold Needles - Hit The Main Drag

No Tears - Echo In My Head

Ex Norwegian - Short On The Wire

DDE's - Fracture

Steve Creep And The Wildcards - Wind Me Up

Han - Astray

Jack O' The Clock - Division Blues

Sheer Calm - Stagnant

The Artist Formally Known as Vince Band - Expiration Date

Richard E - To The Moon

Scenic Brooke West -Willow Tree Daydream 

Stephen Selski - Ames

The American Hotel System - Can You Hear It?

Penny Mob - Addicted

Conor Clements - All Good Things

Niccokick - Crazy

Jus Rus - Northeastern

Springworks - We Are Not Amused

Late Night Lies - (I Think I Love) Taylor Swift

Slut Magic - NY Trash

circle round a sphere- lrlr

The Grain Hoppers - I'm Not In My Right Mind

Gabe Chiarello - Rise, Set

The Forest Effect - Nicotine

Skye Matlock - Reminisce

Ava Della Pietra - Talk It Out

Frog - Goes w/o Saying


Sunday 19 November 2023

Jumbo Chords - Saturday Night, Sunday Morning


Although emanating from bands in the second half of the 90s, there is not a hint of Brit Pop on this splendid debut album from the Leeds quartet Jumbo Chords. In fact, there is something very 60s about the band. The base camp is maybe somewhere between UK Guitar Pop and Psych Pop from that decade.

The arrangements are wonderful and complement the various genres they visit. Whether acoustic or electric, there is a real gentleness that allows you to fully appreciate the quality of the songs. The stripped down Angela is great Acoustic Folk embellished by fine harmonies.

Half As Good is outstanding Beatles Pop whilst Tipping Point is enthralling gentle Psych Pop of the highest quality. There is a seemingly deliberate lo-fi quality to proceedings and a real first take feel to the recordings, even though this may not necessarily be the case.

There is also a West Coast harmonic feel to what's on show and the understated quality just grips you. A real demonstration that you don't need bells and whistles to make a great album, just the bottle to allow the songs speak for themselves.

You can buy and listen to the album everywhere. The full 12 songs can also be listened to here.


Friday 17 November 2023

KC Bowman - Crushes Of Context


There was a time in the 90s when my musical world was awash with quality Singer Songwriters wo turned lyrical adeptness and worthy subject matter into mini masterpieces. Even love songs were putty in their hands. I'm thinking go the likes of Jason Falkner and Michael Penn.

They didn't need bells and whistles, just pure talent. These were different times, albums sold and musicians had careers. Nowadays, you don't see exposure of too may similar characters, so we should be thankful that the likes of KC Bowman are still around. 

Crushes Of Context is an ace album. Songs with a message and performed with grace. No embellishments, just great playing and performance. Songs with depth that fit in different genres that make you sit and listen and admire.

Everything's Fluid sounds very 60s, but also can be compared to modern day Americana. Good Behaviour has gentle acoustic Jangle, Gimme The Concentrate is Funky, a little 80s and yet The Last Days Of Gloria Trillo instrumentally is more than a little 12 Bar. 

Irregular Cool Kids is pure Andrew Gold and Talus Monkey could be Gilbert O'Sullivan backed by Elephant Talk era King Crimson. Armed To The Pepsodent Teeth is a wonderfully venomous political affair which this time could have Petty's Heartbreakers as backing band sound wise. 

Cold Wartime Economy is one of the simpler songs, but also one of the most effective. It has a Country Rock vibe and compare that to Elves which is just splendidly gobsmackingly weird and thankfully not a Christmas song. You will love the songs here, but my top tip is to also listen to the lyrics.

You can listen to and buy the album here.


The Blood Rush Hour - Sanity Fare


Again we return to the early days of IDHAS to revisit The Blood Rush Hour. Who Folds First was a delightful surprise. A real flavour of 70s classic Pop Rock provided melodic joy. You can read that review here at your leisure.

Sanity Fare still has those Pop Rock delights, particularly on No One's There (At All), but there are plenty of steps in other directions. Robert DiStefano felt spent musically after the efforts of the previous albums that it has took six years for the follow up.

Teaming up with Willie Dowling of our beloved The Dowling Poole, there is at times a move into wonderful Prog Pop on the likes of Within This Tragedy and Here We Go Again, reminiscent say of Yes's Drama period.

There is also more than a hint at times of The Alan Parsons Project. Dowling's unfluence can be heard clearly, especially on Watching You Make Love which is a popped up shuffle, a little salsa in vibe with its lounge piano and some great Brass.

See You Again picks up the pace and (No More) Happy Ending is incredibly jaunty alternating vocals between 60s West Coast Pop and 80s urgency. There is a hell of a lot packed into its three minutes and reminds me a lot of Andrew Gold.

The closing Waves Set In Motion is probably the best song The Dowling Poole didn't write. Instrumentally, it has a slight Christmas feel, but why would you turn a joyous song into forced jollity when you can provide the real thing. The arrangements and performance reveal the work that has gone into Sanity Fare and it has really paid off.

You can listen to and buy the album here.


Monday 13 November 2023

Listening To This Week Playlist

Welcome to the latest Listening To This Week Playlist. A little shorter this week at 23 songs. A little rockier in places. A few more You Tube embeds than usual as that is the way the links have appeared. We usually prefer to link on Bandcamp or Soundcloud where possible as those sites make it easier to get to the artist's other work.

There is no song preference in track order, just what we think flows.  I do hope that you can listen to all the songs across this week. The last listed is as great as the first and you have all week to listen. With a week to listen, we hope you can fit them all in.

This weekly playlist is solely for submissions, not the usual stuff that we dig out ourselves. All embeds open in new windows to aid scrolling. Links to the artists will also appear on I Don't Hear A Single Social Media sites over the next 24 hours. This will also help you to discover more about the artists who appear here.

The Pale White - Taste The Sun

The Popguns - Indie Rock Goddess

The Alright Maybes - Come On, Charlie

RedPrint - Stop Running

The House Of Jed - This Is Where It All Begins

Catnip - Waste My Time

S.J. Armstrong - One Of These Nights

The Infinity Chamber - The Opposite Of Everything

Newspaper Taxis - Know Better You Know

Therum - The Darklines

Marley Simon - Feet Don't Touch The Ground

Slut Magic - NY Trash

To Follow

Casino Havana - Bite The Blues

Of Love And Lust - OLAL - Spot

Root Cause - Peace Out Chuck

Philosopher Pirate - Fragile Fragments

Modern Alibi - Boy You Better

Margarita Mantis - Between the Devil And His Deep Blue Sea

OK PANDA - The Background

The Hollow Frays - What's Stoppin' Ya? (2023 remix)

roseinstereo - Aladdins Lamp

Big No No - Stain Your Soul

No Waves - Missing All


Sunday 12 November 2023

Demob Happy - Divine Machines

Another Newcastle Trio, but now based in Brighton, Demob Happy's third album is built around an extraordinary soundscape. As a threesome that can mix Prog and Psych, there will be obviously be comparisons with Muse, but these comparisons would be more than a little unfair.

Demob Happy are far more melodic and accessible and veer into both Pop Rock and Classic Rock. There are even hints of latter day Led Zeppelin on the likes of Tear It Down and at times, there is some great melodic Space Rock in their material. 

Token Appreciation Society is a great opener and even sounds as though Russell Mall is on joint vocals. Super-Fluid is delivered with a sort of UK Glam Rock 1974 riff and then changes tack around a paint stripping solo until getting back to the groove.

You sense that the album is itching to jump into a harder melodic rock and Run Baby Run comes close, but the complex arrangements just won't allow this, particularly the choruses.  She's As Happy As A Man Can Be allows aware slowdown and isn't a million miles away from The Killers.

If I Have A Problem (I Ignore) is a cross between Psych Rock and Noise Rock and everything comes to a close with the Classic Rock of Hades, Baby which is a sort of culmination of all that's gone before with a wonderful almost heavy Brit Pop arrangement.

The real take from Divine Machines is the exceptional arrangements. These are massive, but never overblown. It is an album that actually grips you because of this. The lyrical sentiments and vocals are both top notch, but it is the sound of the thing that absolutely grabs you. Complex yet incredibly melodic, what a cracking album this is!

You can buy the album everywhere and listen to it via any of these links. You can find out more about the band here.


Saturday 11 November 2023

The Popguns - Popism EP

The Popguns are well into their fourth decade and it is always wonderful to see them again. Released through the excellent label Matinee Recordings. This is great Pop with a capital P, splendid melodic flourishes that chirp up your day. 

The Brighton five piece offer up a happier version of say The Beths, more pop led and less deep than our New Zealand friends, less Indie Rock, more Indie Pop. The songs are built on hypnotic riffs with big choruses that soon have you singing along.

A big part of this is obviously the sweet voice of Wendy Pickles whose vocals vacate the pure pop displayed here, but also sound a little folky at times. However, this vocal is ideally suited the splendid songwriting strength of Simon Pickles and in particular the performance of the band.

Caesar is pure second half of the eighties in all its Jangle Pop joy and it is the jangle that hits home most, although the guitar solos and arrangements run it close. Red Cocoon is very 60s Girl Pop, you can imagine the song on a 60s kitchen sink film.

Dirty London is lyrically adept and displays much more urgency than what surrounds it and the riff just grabs you. But it is the closing Indie Rock Goddess that is the stand out. Pickles gets a little Shirley Manson. thankfully without all that up itself fuzz.

The song is much more Indie Rock and all tongue in cheek attitude. The chorus is one of the best things that you will hear all year, a little American, a little Elastica or Sleeper. It is a top notch end to a top notch album. Available as a download or CD or 7 Inch Vinyl EP, this is an essential addition to your collection.

You can listen to and buy any of the formats here. You can find out more about the band here.


The Pale White - A New Breed


We could get back into the debate of whether 6 songs is an EP or a mini album and mention that many Power Pop albums are not much longer than the 22 minutes revealed here. But let's not and instead celebrate the excellence of The Pale White.

The Newcastle Trio have been getting more and more attention and deservedly so. They have the happy knack of being in touch with the new breed of Guitar bands that have emerged over the past couple of years, but having far more substance.

The I Love You, Yes I Do, You Know its True is not for them. Instead you have great riff driven albums that are excellently arranged and produced. This allows them to appeal much wider audiences than their peers. They can do everything from 60s Beat to Indie Rock, Pop Rock to Big Rock, Brit Pop to something approaching Psych. They have it all.

These six tracks show plenty of their range. Dogs reminds me of the better fringe of Brit Pop, similar to the likes of Octopus and Straw who demonstrated great melodic arrangements that fitted the current trends, but also gave great nods to what has gone before. It is a cracking song, but all six here are.

How Far Can You Push A Man flirts with Prog and 70s Pop Rock, whilst List Of Enemies is great 90s College Noise Rock delivered with plenty of Fuzz at an urgent pace with just a hint of Muse. Time Bomb has more of an 80s vibe at times mixing say INXS with a great anthem chorus.

There has been a lot of attention given to the opener, Validate Me, fairly it has to be said. It has everything you need in an Indie Pop Rock song. A killer chorus just takes it up another level and a killer riff, but the real joy is the closer, Taste The Sun.

The song reveals everything that was great about Brit Pop with big 60s hints in the arrangement. That period was never really about Oasis, it was songs like the quality of this. It is an epic affair that rounds off a belter of an album. The Pale White leave you wanting more as all great bands do and I suspect that the future is large for these three.

You can buy the album everywhere and it is available to listen to on all the streaming sites including YouTube Music here. You can find out more about the band here.   


The Luck Of Eden Hall - An Introduction To The Luck Of Eden Hall


There are a number of things to celebrate with this release. Firstly, it would be the magnificence of Mr Curvey. We have delighted in the growth and recognition of his current adventures with Custard Flux, but it was The Luck Of Eden Hall that led us there for a period of over 25 years.

Secondly, we can acknowledge the wonderful Fruits De Mer label and its ability to release albums that are consistently more than interesting. This year saw the introduction of the An Introduction To series starting with Us And Them, followed by this and Bevis Frond are soon to follow.

Finally, it is a personal thing for me. For all the types and genres of music that I listen to, my first love is Psych Pop and many think that the genre is just one thing, I am here to assure you that it isn't. There are elements that lean heavily to Pop such as Toytown and the likes of Orgone Box.

There are others in the middle, Cotton Mather being a great example and there are those that lean more towards Psych and The Luck Of Eden Hall are probably the best exponents of this groove. The band had an ability to veer off into spellbinding territory instrumentally, but keep things in an even keel with melodic vocals.

This collection covers appearances on the FdeM label. It is predominantly covers, but these covers have a unique stamp on them. There are songs that you will obviously be aware of such as Something In The Air, SF Sorrow Is Born and Stop Stop Stop.

But there are also great selections that you may not of amongst songs from the likes of The Count Five and The Association. There is even a Beatles cover which of course is not what you would expect ant everyday band to choose.

The centrepiece is a cover of Yes's Starship Trooper. It all starts pretty faithful until the closing Steve Howe riff and then just explodes into Psych, Rock and Prog racking up just under 19 minutes of sheer wonder that you simply do not want to end.

This is a fine place to start with The Luck Of Eden Hall, but you really should investigate their album discography to get the full flavour of what an outstanding band they were. Fortunately we still have Custard Flux, but would we be there without the excellence of this Chicago outfit?

As with all Fruits De Mer albums this is a physical release, only available on CD. FdeM have unexpectedly sold out but copies are still available from The Luck Of Eden Hall site here.


Friday 10 November 2023

IDHAS Ten Songs Mix 60

After an absence akin to nipping for a paper and never returning, Lord Lucan-esque, The IDHAS 10 Song Mix returns. It is ready to liven a quiet week on here. due to the Internet going on strike. The ISP had to bring a cherry picker and everything to get us up again. The Mix will now be fortnightly and from Volume 61 will include a write up on each of the 10 songs chosen on I Don't Hear A Single.

10 Songs in 34 minutes and with its unreasonably long absence, it had to return with a cracker and this is exactly that. As well as revealing that new music continues to thrive, it demonstrates how buoyant the Indie scene is. The songs are not placed in the order of preference, just in a way that makes the mix flow. There are many album reviews to get through from tomorrow.

 Here is the playlist of the ten songs this week :

01 The Jellybricks - Monday's Never

02 The Len Price Three - Man Out Of Time

03 The Journals Kept - Heartache

04 The Veras - Something To Say

05 Jonny Swift - She Said

06 Spearside - Trendsetters

07 Silent Forum - Cat Pose

08 Shangri-Lass - Father's Daughter

09 Diners - The Power

10 The Mommyheads - Such Beautiful Things

IDHAS Ten Songs Mix 60


Sunday 5 November 2023

Listening To This Week Playlist

The latest Listening To This Week is brought to you by 4G this week, running as usual from Monday to Sunday. In a week when everything seems to have broken down, the router packed up on Saturday evening. Hence this being posted a little early as we work round things until the new router arrives.

26 songs for your aural pleasure. There is no song preference in track order, just what we think flows.  I do hope that you can listen to all the songs across this week. The last listed is as great as the first and you have all week to listen.

This weekly playlist is solely for submissions, not the usual stuff that we dig out ourselves. All embeds open in new windows to aid scrolling. Links to the artists will also appear on I Don't Hear A Single Social Media sites over the next 24 hours. This will help you to discover more about the artists who appear here.

Armchair Oracles - Nilsson Wilson

Friends With Boats - The Point

Kyle Poppen - Save Me

On Being An Angel - Playin' It Cool

The Idiot Kids - Wilted Bloom

Sorry Monks - What You Make It

DeeOhGee - NaNaNa

Way Down The Rainbow - Pool Party

Espumu - Multiplying Colours

Scarlet Drive - If I Knew Your Name

A.N.J.A. - The Season Of Evil

Carousels - The Fine Line

Crash Exhibition - Alright

Frankly - Figure of Speech

Dave Burn - World In My Way

Adam's Sister - My Life Might Suck (But So Do You)

Twins Sport - Luminous

Meatball Sludge - Disco Fang

Baïki - Les Boites

Soft Contact - Boyfriend In A Band

Local Hero - End Of The World

TV Death - Scarecrow

Joschko - Home Without Bed

Teenage Tom Petties - This One's On You

The Fit - Turn to Gold

Urban Hane - Nätter Utan Drömmar


Redprint - The Plan

Many people get sniffy about Cover Bands and I understand that when wigs are adorned for T Rox or Pink Flood. but most bands to some extent begin with covers and debut album tour setlist are awash with such. We also forget how learning these songs adds to musicianship and direction.

Dutch quartet, Reprint, began as a cover band over a decade ago and this has resulted in one hell of a debut EP. I've found myself listening to more rockier stuff lately, more of a diversion as you can get blocked up with all the crashing chords and big choruses. 

I've not grown my hair (well I have a bit, but that's because I'm too lazy to go to the Barbers and currently exhibit a sort of Robyn Hitchcock look) and I have not gone all banging. These diversions have to be melodic, well performed and vary across Classic Rock, Psych and Prog and riff driven.

Thankfully, Reprint cover all those bases. In many ways they remind me of Rush in their early days without the concepts and the lyrical depth, but instrumentally. They also exhibit a massive amount of power. A groove and boy do they hit it.

You find yourself engrossed in the hypnotic riffs, wonderfully so, yes this is Rock, but it has such a melodic bent that you become completely hooked. Immersion's eight minutes combine Classic Rock, Prog, 90s College Rock and Harder Rock and do it so well. It is a monster of a song with a monster extended solo.

Stop Running is built on a belting riff whilst Telephone is much more in Classic Rock. Herd fairly races along and Colour Me Insane mixes slight Desert Rock with big hints of Prog and is very Rush. The biggest take of the EP is how well these four can play.

The biggest plus I got was the reaction to Immersion on this week's Listening To This Week. It was so favourable from listeners and showed how many followers have open ears. It is not often that a 7 minute 55 seconds track creates such as a buzz, particularly when it is surrounded by Guitar Pop.

You can listen to the EP here and on the streaming sites. I just wish it was available to buy as the band deserve recompense for a recording as great as this.