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Singles Bar: April 2006

THE LIKE What I Say What I Mean (2006)

The Like are a teenage three piece and a throwback to The Runaways - an all girl band from LA playing heavy weight pop. They signed to Geffen Records in 2004 and have toured supporting Kings Of Leon. What I Say What I Mean has Blondie pop influences and a big Joan Jett And The Blackhearts chorus making it perfect for those top-down summer cruising moments.

The single is taken from their debut album Are You Thinking What I'm Thinking? ***

Review by Pete Whalley

CALEXICO Bisbee Blue (2006)

Calexico formed in 1996 in Tuscon and are basically a duo of Joey Burns and John Convertino. They incorporate elements of jazz, folk, country, mariachi, and even electronics, and have worked with artists as diverse as Sinatra, Wilco and Lyle Lovett. They've even diversified into film soundtrack music (Collateral).

But Bisbee Blue is the sort of thing you'd hear in many a Nashville bar - a folk/country/blues ballad. Nice enough and pleasantly played and delivered. But it's not stand-out enough to inspire repeated plays or further investigation. **½

Review by Pete Whalley

THE MYSTERY JETS You Can't Fool Me Dennis (2006)

Heralded as purveyors of a new wave of prog and featuring Henry Harrison - father of Blaine Harrison (keyboard/vocals, 20) - on guitar, The Mystery Jets hail from Eel Pie Island, in the middle of the Thames at Twickenham.

While reference points such as Yes, King Crimson and the like have been mentioned, The Mystery Jets sound is more one of British pop than prog, although there are more time changes than you could shake a stick at.

You Can't Fool Me Dennis is a playful quirky pop number of the sort that hero Syd Barret may have conjured up. I suspect repeated listens would find it indelibly imprinted on your cerebellum, but my copy failed to play 4 times out of 5 and crashed my PC. ***½

Review by Pete Whalley

STARSAILOR Keep Us Together (EMI 2006)

Keep Us Together is the third single from the band's gold-selling third album On The Outside. It's a powerful piece of rock that should please the fans and be a stadium favourite. It opens with chiming guitars and James Walsh's instantly recognisable vocals before powering into a chorus that bears more than a passing resemblance to Simple Minds' Alive And Kicking. But there's nothing wrong with that. ****

Review by Pete Whalley

FALL OUT BOY Dance, Dance (Mercury 2006)

Fall Out Boy are one of those US bands that seem to come from nowhere and take over the UK charts and press - Kerrang! are already touting the band as the future of punk rock! Mind you they jump on any bandwagon going! This, the band's second single is not as good as `Sugar, We're Goin' Down' but still has a very catchy hook and you can see it again conquering the charts.

If you enjoy US punk (an entirely different beast than classic UK punk) then Fall Out Boy will be right up your street and they tour the UK as well (although the tour is now sold out). ***½

Review by Jason Ritchie

DISARM EP (2006) Website

With tracks from their forthcoming EP, this young bunch play a mean mix of modern punk and rock'n'roll, and no bandwagon either. Plenty of dirty, sleazy and also commercial influences, this is far from the plethora of manufactured sounding guitar bands around at the moment.

The opening song hits you in the face and the music stays there, even with the touch of Red Hot Chili Peppers in track 3. Worth checking out. ***½

Review by Joe Geesin

LAST STOP CHINA TOWN Soldiers of Fortune (CDS 2006) Website

Tad bizarre writing your lead single about the glory days of watching 80's TV's 'The A-Team' but hey it works. Neat, concise riffs and a vocalist who at times sounds at times like Ian Astbury of the Cult. That deep vocal sound that maintains its melody.

Not bad at all and they will doubtless core well on the airplay stakes with XFM, Kerrang! et al. ***½

Review by Jason Ritchie

3MILEHIGH Always Watching (CDS 2006) Website

Now I am used to getting CD's a few weeks maybe before their release date but this little fella isn't out untiul July! Leeds based band who certainly like their Foo Fighters and Therapy? coupling tight guitar riffs with catchy choruses. The drums are nicely up in the mix as well.

Very competent rock and worth a listen. ***½

Review by Jason Ritchie

THE FONDAS D'ya Feel Lucky? (CDS 2006)

The Fondas have already made a splash here in the UK getting good reviews and Radio One airplay. They trade in spiky riffs and vocals, after a slow intro on the title track. 'We Alone' clocks in at just over two minutes of fairly catchy rock. They are not bad but not really 'must have' in my personal view. **½

Review by Jason Ritchie

RATTLESNAKE REMEDY Drag You Down (EP 2006) Website:

There is a definite swing in rock music to the classic Guns 'n' Roses sound and attitude - just check out Towers of London, Red Star Rebels et al.

Now add to this growing list Rattlesnake Remedy who sound like Axl Rose fronting AC/DC! In vocalist Lee Stone they have the power and attitude needed to pull off this style of music. 'Drag You Down' features a monster riff and close your eyes and you are back in the glory days of G 'N' R. But the band are no tribute act as they have heavier riffs and throw a few curveballs into the mix like 'Angel Eyes'.

Crank it up and enjoy some well played, no-frills rock music! ****

Review by Jason Ritchie


IMOGEN HEAP Goodnight and Go(White Rabbit Records 2006)

Goodnight And Go is bitter/sweet pop from Imogen's **** rated album Speak For Yourself and features a guest appearance by Jeff Beck on guitar. Imogen is currently riding a shooting star having signed a major deal with Sony, reaching #1 on the Billboard Heatseekers Chart, selling out her UK tour and various tracks from her album (shortly to be re-released) being used in films and on TV. ****

Review by Pete Whalley

JOSEPH ARTHUR Can't Exist (14th Floor Records 2006)

Can't Exist is the latest single to be drawn from Joseph Arthur's exquisite Our Shadows Will Remain album. It's intelligent, articulate and beautiful - melodic singer-songwriter rock of the highest order - up there with Ryan Adams and The Boss. Seriously classy stuff. ****

Review by Pete Whalley

***** Out of this world | **** Pretty damn fine |
*** OK, approach with caution unless you are a fan |
** Instant bargain bin fodder | * Ugly. Just ugly

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