Thursday, 25 August 2016



HUNTER & THE BEAR ANNOUNCE NEXT TRACK RELEASE

The 4 piece rock band are in the process of making their much awaited debut album, and are giving their dedicated fans a track a month for 10 months. Then a full release, with hopefully, some added extras too.

This is all part of their plan for world 'domination'

The rationale behind the  monthly release process is to give 'spotlight' to each track as it's released and perhaps giving their dedicated fan base a bit of time to indulge and divulge, thus giving each track it's own moment.

As the boys say "albums get lost" and that is quite true.

August we had the  'anthemic' rock track 'Renegade', which was their introduction to the forthcoming debut album.

September we have 'Oh Daisy'

Oh Daisy is a more balladic rock track but certainly does not distract from the direction these lads want to go and is already a sure fire favourite of their 'Hunters' fan base.




I have heard this track live too, and believe me it is certainly ramped up onstage.

Will Irvine's 'gravel-like' voice is accompanied 'choir like' by the other members of this superb band.
These fellas are sculpturing a unique sound that is passionate, powerful and yet at the same time truly delicate and sensitive.

Hunter & The Bear have everything they need to continue to sculpture their work . It is graceful, melancholy, exciting and at times incendiary. There is a true driven passion that continually runs through their presentation.
Their present sound is attractive, and I am looking forward to more.

THESE FELLAS ARE GOING TO BE BIG













Tuesday, 23 August 2016

Whiskey Myers



Texas southern rockers Whiskey Myers have released the first single from their new album Mud



Whiskey Myers, the soulful Southern rockers, will release their latest / fourth studio album, Mud, on September 9th via Spinefarm Records, featuring the single ‘Lightning Bugs and Rain’. Helmed by Grammy-winning producer Dave Cobb (Chris Stapleton, Rival Sons, etc.), this record sees the East Texan outfit taking their easy style and sound to fresh levels, straddling a number of different genres – soul, country, classic rock, blues, etc. – in the process.
The follow-up to Early Morning Shakes (2014), Mud features ten new tracks packed with narrative vocals, emotive hooks and twin guitar strength, including ‘Frogman’ (a co-write with Rich Robinson previewed live at the Download Festival) and ‘Deep Down In The South’, a classic slice of Southern Rock celebrating a culture rich with tradition and solid values.
Through the quality of their song-writing, ability to straddle different genres, plus their undeniable power in concert and on record, the band has attracted a devoted army of home-grown fans who pack out venues, sing their praises online, and continue to make Whiskey Myers a word-of-mouth sensation… and that fervour is now spreading quickly overseas.
On the live front, Whiskey Myers (Cody Cannon – Lead Vocals, Guitar | Cody Tate – Guitar, Vocals | John Jeffers – Guitar, Vocals | Gary Brown – Bass | Jeff Hogg – Drums) will return to the UK for their debut headline UK tour in December; due to strong demand, the venues in Birmingham & Glasgow have already been upgraded.
Whiskey Myers were recently here for Ramblin’ Man Fair (July), Download (June), and prior to that they made their first visit to these shores Special Guesting with kindred spirits, The Cadillac Three (January / February 2016).

'Lightning Bugs And Rain' is the brand new single from Whiskey Myers, one of the USA's most exciting bands and pioneers of  southern rock & roll. Whiskey Myers are a seven-piece whose combination of melodic sensibility with riff-laden tunes represents the very best of guitar-driven music today. While the biting tones and driving rhythms of ‘Lightning Bugs And Rain’ stay true to hard-edged origins, for Whiskey Myers the song is king. Intelligently overlaying well-crafted melodies over thunderous soundscapes, Whiskey Myers have reengineered and revitalised guitar-based music for the modern age. On top of their polished studio offerings, the band have a fierce reputation as a live act. Whiskey Myers live show is truly a spectacle to behold, each player captivating their audience with individual personality and total command of their instruments. The group reveal a range of surprises throughout each set, showcasing a wide spectrum of styles from driving southern rock to acoustic ballads. 
I absolutely love this song, the first 30 seconds or so has everything you could ask for, it opens with acoustic guitar,clapping,drums, horns, female backing, the lot. Musically it's a cocktail of Springsteen,Skynyrd,St.Paul &The Broken Bones with a hint of fellow Texan Gary Clark Jnr.
What makes this song, in my opinion, is the fact that Whiskey Myers do not move from their 'southern'roots but just add to it with the horns...
I LOVE IT...
SKYNYRD YOUR SUCCESSORS AWAIT





The full list of headline UK dates is as follows:-
DECEMBER 2016
1st – London, The Dome
2nd – Birmingham, O2 Institute2*
5th – Manchester, Ruby Lounge
6th – Glasgow, St Luke’s*







Monday, 22 August 2016

UNCLE LUCIUS



Country-infused Southern rock band Uncle Lucius have confirmed their full European tour in October and November, spanning the UK, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Holland and Germany. The band have also released a brand new live video of their latest single 'Age of Reason', shot at Gruene Hall, New Braunfels, Texas earlier this year.

From the hotbed of music that is Austin,Texas we have Uncle Lucius. What is in the water in Austin..Uncle Lucius,Nelo,Wo Fat, Alpha Rev, The Fabulous Thunderbirds and many many more.....

Band members:
Jon Grossman : Keys/Accordian
Michael Carpenter: Lead Guitar/Vocals
Kevin Galloway: Vocals/ Rhythm Guitar
Joshua Dane Greco: Drums/Percussion
Johann Valles: Bass

Having shared stages with Merle Haggard, Zac Brown Band, Shooter Jennings, Ryan Bingham and Hayes Carll, Uncle Lucius will already be familiar to many who consider themselves fans of country, Americana and southern rock. 

For a decade, the band built its fan base the hard way, through relentless touring and restless searching.
When the time came to exit the Nashville ‘machine’ and find a new way to create and release the music they needed to make, they called on their die-hard fans for help. Hundreds of believers pledged tens of thousands of hard-earned dollars. Both humbled and exhilarated, the band hit the studio, eager to justify their fans’ love with the labour of their hearts and souls.
The resulting fourth LP, The Light, is the statement their fans have waited for, with its songs of seeking and questioning, of reaching out to others, of excavating the hidden strength within. After years spent spreading their message across Texas, here at last is the vehicle that can take them to the national - and international -level.



Much about Uncle Lucius sets them apart. Five songwriters combining forces is neither common nor easy, but what each individual loses in pride the band more than gains in power. The song itself matters more than who wrote it, more than the genre to which it belongs. “It’s not about trying to write a certain kind of song,” says Galloway, “it’s about harvesting whatever song comes.”

Despite that organic method, The Light’s 12 songs share themes of travel, movement, and quests without destinations. The album places the band in unfamiliar sonic territory, and much credit belongs to producer George Reiff​(Shinyribs, Ray Wylie Hubbard, Band of Heathens) for testing their limits. 
Every member influences every other, and that combined filter comes close to defining what Uncle Lucius is. “We’re a five-headed beast,” Galloway insists, “and our songs speak for us. Whether we succeed depends on how well they resonate in the world.”

A band Carpenter calls “Southern rock for the thinking man” doesn’t shy away from outside-the-box influences. Galloway quotes philosopher Jiddu Krishnamurti and mythologist Joseph Campbell in the same breath as Willie Nelson, while Greco evokes The Band and bebop drummer Max Roach with equal aplomb.
Each member recognises that authenticity requires a constant seeking, that at no time may an artist arrive at who they truly are. Instead they must look always beyond their present confines, in order to remain unsettled enough to create.

Certainly there’s risk involved when a band decides to go its own way. Freedom carries with it the weight of responsibility after all. That Uncle Lucius seems destined for a broader audience should come as no surprise, for music that comes from the heart and speaks to the soul.

There’s a sense of unrivalled freedom on ‘The Light’ that’s hard to find on other records. From start to finish, Uncle Lucius provoke images of the open road, exploring scenes in the Deep South and taking it easy. It feels like they’ve been let loose on this record and haven’t held back with experimentation. This is a pensive look at leaving something behind and heading into pastures new, a great pairing for the long summer ahead…hopefully.

Uncle Lucius have announced ‘Age of Reason’ will be their new UK radio single.


Written by founding bassist Hal Vorpahl it certainly is one of the stand out tracks on the album, it seeks out common sense in the face of political polarisation. Galloway's vocals are both soulful and tender. “It’s a call to let go of limitations,” said singer Kevin Galloway, and among these barriers are religion, tradition, and tribe, for no matter their power in shaping us, “where we come from will never mean as much as where we’ve been.” As the track quiets to a dissonant murmur, Galloway offers his sternest indictment: “We claim to serve divinity, yet we exploit those who believe.”

I missed these fellas back in January when they visited Bristol and it looks like I will miss them again as , much like other touring bands, they are not venturing into South Wales. 







ONE TO WATCH

CLARA BOND



Clara Bond is a country-pop artist from the South-West of England. Although so far, Clara has described herself as a pop artist, her songwriting style and experimentation with the blending of elements from different genres produces something that stands outside of traditional pop, and over the last year this has taken her in the direction of some of her country influences. Having had the good fortune to work with chart topping writers, Clara has made waves as a songwriter since the release of her first EP The Chase, which has pushed her to new levels of media presence. A busy couple of years has included appearances for The Telegraph, one of her songs being featured in a film at the Cannes Film Festival, and being invited to play the iconic stage at Ronnie Scott’s.

Travelling to London from her native Devon for gigs, writing sessions and media appearances has become second nature for Clara, all the while continuing to grow her fan base on YouTube and social media with cover songs, attracting the interest and support of Ryan Seacrest who described her as having “one of the best covers on YouTube”. To coincide with the release of her new EP Out Of Towners, Clara was invited to record and film an exclusive full band live version of the EP for BBC Introducing.

In 2012, Clara released, at the young age of 19, her debut EP "The Chase". This was the followed by another EP ' Focus' in 2014
Now at the age of 23 Clara is about to release her 3rd EP "Out Of Towners" on the 19th September.
 First up though is the single of the the same name which is out Monday 22nd August.

I had the pleasure of receiving a digital copy recently and I have to say this young lady is some talent and this song could be straight out of Nashville or Austin,Texas..a "proper" country style of mega proportions.
If you did not know Clara was from the UK , you would imagine her being from the heartland of US country. Her tones are delicate yet have a twang of US country.
I for one will be looking out for this young lady.




In her own words: "Every single person who had anything to do with this record is a close friend. This includes anyone who played on the record, anyone who filmed anything and all the campaign photos and website design. That’s why this project is so close to my heart; it’s a group effort from everyone that I love. We didn’t record this EP in a professional studio but in several locations, including a boathouse, a church, my own home and even a garden shed. Two of the songs on this record are my way of closing the book and getting closure on a relationship that I spent many years in, the other two songs are me moving on from that relationship. 'Out Of Towners' was written during my trip to the States; the first time I had travelled by myself and feeling like a fish out of water - exactly what I needed. Love Can’t Stay is about the man I met whilst I was out there who made me feel a little more at home, but if you’ve heard the song, you know it was not meant to be!"

This EP 'Out Of Towners' is Clara's first venture into the genre of 'country'

Here is an earlier video release of  "Focus", which has a more 'pop' feel around it but I still think with a hint of country.


I had the privilege of asking Clara a few questions too:

1 So, #3 ep , excited?

So excited! We've been working on this EP for nearly a year so it feels kind of scary to finally be releasing it to be honest. It's unlike anything I've ever done. It was the first time I had ever not recorded in professional studios. Most of the vocals were recorded in a makeshift vocal booth above a fridge in a garden shed. I worked with a Jazz/ Funk producer to make sure we could work some interesting influences into the country sound. 

2  Why the change in genre to country?

The country aspect to my music has always been there, I just decided to fully embrace it with this EP. When I started writing these songs, I didn't think "This song has to sound country". I started writing and the country sound just sort of came out and I love that because it means it's a natural thing. 

3 You have an incredible voice..what/who got you into music?

Thank you very much. When I was a kid I used to watch my older brothers play computer games and the GTA Vice City soundtrack was an amazing 80s playlist. I used to ask them to "play the songs I like" until they were sick of them and me. The first CD I ever bought was 'The Best of Eagles' when I was about 8 because I just wanted to listen to Hotel California on loop. That's where my love of country started: those great stories told through catchy melodies. 

4 When can we expect a full album?

I haven't really thought that far ahead but I do love the idea of creating an album. I guess one will be coming in a couple of years but I'd want to take my time with it. 

5 Any tour plans?

At the moment I'm booking some key shows in the large cities in the UK. Eventually I'll be touring with my lovely band and hopefully booking a few European shows in the near future.  It's definitely on my radar. Anyone who has seen me live will tell you that my band are amazing. I think they are the musicians that inspire me most in the world. 

6 Apart from Taylor Swift and Bryan Adams any other musical influences?

Oddly I don't really get my musical influences from other country artists. I've tried my best to listen to other genres and get inspired from them to create a new sound. I feel like if you try and do something that Taylor is doing, you will always be chasing a bandwagon and won't come up with your own original thing. I do think John Mayer is brilliant though. What a great songwriter. I guess he's bordering the country/ blues crossover. 


7 Who is on your ipod right now?

The 1975's new album and a hugely underrated band called Vulfpeck. I'm seeing both bands live this year and I'm so excited. My guitarist has got me into Jeff Buckley recently too but I have to be in the right mood to listen to him. He's an intense fella. 

8 Any plans to move away from Devon to further your career?

Yes, definitely. I have loved growing up in Devon. There's nothing like living 5 minutes from the beach and being able to walk your dog along the cliff tops but I'll definitely be moving to a city to be closer to everything. 
I love Bristol, it has a great music scene and is between Devon and London so that would be perfect. So who knows? 








Monday, 1 August 2016

"RENEGADE"

 

HUNTER & THE BEAR SINGLE RELEASE

5TH AUGUST 2016

This is a first from me, a blog on a forthcoming single. I have been asked to do blogs on tours,albums, artists. I have completed blogs on gigs too, but a single.....never

But this is different, this is Hunter & The Bear, this is Renegade.

I have heard this song several times live so I knew what I was going to hear and I was a bit worried. Not that it would be crap, but live music, to me, is always a few notches up from the studio as all the "studioisation" is removed.When played live you get the raw energy and none of the mixing.Having said that, Renegade is a fantastic song and a superb introduction to the bands forthcoming album. They intend to release 1 track per month and Renegade is the 1st. 
The song itself is a far cry from the bands "folk" days of a few years ago and that is fully stated in an interview I saw on line when the band were being interviewed. Forgive me, but I cannot remember where or when, but what I distinctively remember is the interviewer describing them as folk and Will intervened and said "Rock". That, to me,certainly says..that's our direction now, but we will keep our folk roots embedded in our set lists, although we will oomph them up.

So, as I said earlier "Renegade" is the bands 1st track release from their,yet unnamed, debut album.
From the opening percussion and guitar riffs, it hits you in the midriff with a gusto of pure raw energy. It certainly is a tune that gets your feet tapping and socks rocking..in fact, don't bother with socks...
It is a simplistic track yet brilliant in it's production and delivery.
 Every one of the band performs majestically and is utilised to their full.

I LOVE IT

Great track fellas....cannot wait for more....