Wednesday 15 February 2023

Rediscovering my love of Rock and Roll

So I had a busy weekend, as I am sure you gathered, from the relative lack of blogging. The band were up at the Bacon Lane Club, performing the Burnt Oak Boogie in Burnt Oak! It was a blast!

I've always enjoyed playing with The False Dots and I go to gigs all the time, so it may sound strange to say that I'd sort of fallen out of love with Rock and Roll music. I didn't suddenly start hating it and turning off the radio when I heard it, I didn't give the vinyl to Oxfam, but I realised that nothing much new was inspiring me. The bands I was enjoying all seemed to be a legacy of 1977 and Punk/New Wave or were different genre's such as soul, ska and reggae. Even my songwriting has very much moved towards Ska over the last five years. 

Running a music studio, I hear all manner of new, up and coming bands. I found that the ones I stopped and had a crafty listen to were not rock bands. They just didn't interest me. Was this because the music wasn't great or just because my tastes had changed. Of course there are some that are great and I admired the technical ability or songwriting of, but none were exciting me enough to actually buy a ticket and check them out, something I do all of the time. 

My taste in Rock and Roll music has always been very much skewed towards punk, 60's psychedelia and 50's rock and roll. I never got metal or prog and I doubt I ever will. I suppose by definition, that explained the fact that newer exponents didn't excite me, but over the years, I've always discovered interesting new sounds to get into. It wasn't a conscious thing, but I guess that from around the mid 1990's, I was finding less and less new rock and roll music to get into.

I can hear you saying "Well Rog, that's just getting old and becoming a boring old fart". Well, something has happend over the last year. I've started to find new bands and sounds that I though "You know what, that is pretty good". The first sign of this rock and roll renaissance was when I discovered a band called Voodoo Radio. The singer is brilliant and she turned up at the studio, where we had a chat. She mentioned her band and I checked them out and was blown away. Musically they remind me of a mash up of the sound of The Ramones, with the attitude of Bondie and the vibe of the Cramps. They really are very good. Even my missus who has never really done rock and roll liked them. Check em out

Last November, we played a gig at The Dublin Castle. One of the support bands was a young band called Divided Compass. They were absolutely brilliant. Here is a taster, although I have to say that some of their more rocky numbers are the one's I'd have chosen for a live video. The guitarist is a real dynamo and worth the price of admission to see them. They play pretty good and put on an excellent show. Everyone who came down to see us told me they were pretty blown away by them.

We are playing at the Dublin Castle again, on Wednesday 15th March (Tickets in advance here As I always do, I checked out the sound of the other bands. I was delighted to see that Tony at the Castle had rebooked Divided Compass. I was intrigued by the write up for one of the other bands "The Harlem Racket - ever attended Karl Lagerfeld's Vampire Club? Well tonight's the night...and expect some grinding garage rock with your bloody neck bizniz too. That's just one of the marvellously monikered Harlem Racket's spiky little vignettes of joy...enjoy them all." . As one does, I did a quick google of them and this was what came up. It is brilliant. I must say that I'm really looking forward to the gig. The only thing better, in my view, than going to see great bands is to be on the same bill at a gig as them. 

I've realised that there is plenty of stuff out there, you just have to look and when you do, you find all manner of great new music. It is easy to stay in your comfort zone, listening to music recorded decades ago. I'm lucky, I play in a band and run a studio so I get to hear this. I really feel I should share it with you!


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