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Singles Bar: March 2010

We've listed singles/EPs/demos in order of star rating. Best first.

Reviewed by Pete Whalley


Who are they: East London alt rockers and winners of the Glastonbury Emerging Talent Competition.

What's It Like: In the mould of bands like Keane and Starsailor - delicate piano opening lines over a gentle backbeat, building to crescendo choruses, with a glorious melodies. The B-side Clementine has subtle hints of Bowie circa 1969.

Should I Buy: Absolutely no reason why not. If they can maintain this level of quality control, then Coldplay are yesterday's men. ***½

PROJEKT The Compass

Who are they:
London based 4 piece rock n roll unit.

What's It Like:
Well, they sound like they come from Madchester - The Compass could pass muster for an Oasis number, the acoustic version of Heroes And Villains a Noel Gallagher busk, and the unmastered demo of Desert Storm is a dead ringer for classic Stone Roses.

Should I Buy:
Perhaps not yet, but with a little sprinkling of magic production dust, Projekt could be a force to reckoned with. ***

BROKEN LINKS The Fine Line Between Choice / Decay

Who are they:
An alt three piece from Southampton

What's It Like:
Wearing their 80s influences proudly, powerful industrial pop techno rock somewhere between Ultravox / OMD and Muse. And despite being an EP, you get more minutes of music than on some albums - 6 tracks running out at 41minutes!

Should I Buy:
Personally, I think Muse are massively overrated. On that basis, Broken Links will probably be huge. ***

VOLCANOES Sugar and Snarls

Who are they:
Sheffield / Leeds based indie act, formed in 2005.

What's It Like:
Arctic Monkeys meet The Stranglers.

Should I Buy:
With the Arctic Monkeys having moved from their roots closer to a more mainstream sound with Humbug, there's a definite gap in the market. And Volcanoes could be the band to fill it. **½


Here Come The Popes Part 1 was the highlight of Sergeant Buzfuz's third album The Jewelled Carriageway. This remix is an edit of the continuing tale - Here Come The Popes Part 4 which appeared on last year's High Slang album.

And on the same theme, it's supplemented here by an instrumental inspired by the recent Vatican scandal where a priest led police on a high speed car chase after being stopped in Rome's red light district

Unfortunately both have a techno crossover vibe that falls a long way short of the Part I which remains a prime example of new British folk at its very best. **½


Who are they: Sheffield wonky-pop albinos (according to their PR)

What's It Like: skittish lo-fi indie pop, moulded in the image of off beat band's like The Coral.

Should I Buy: depends if you're into indie. I'm not. **½

WE'LL ALL BE HEROES Everything Must Go

Who are they: Post-hardcore tunesters. To you and me, a high energy three piece.

What's It Like: While not a zillion miles away from the NME indie/ post-Busted scene i.e. constantly up-tempo songs with shouty choruses, We'll All Be Heroes add a loose sleazy rock feel that gives their sound an edge and credibility that most of their counterparts lack.

Should I Buy: Bursting with energy, with an authentic rock swagger **½

THE GOOD THE BAD From 005 to 008

Who are they: The new school of surf and flamenco - a band of two guitars and drums from Denmark, and if the artwork is anything to go by, a band with a keen interest in female genitalia.

What's It Like: Four imaginatively named tracks - 005, 006, 007 and 008 - all instrumentals that are a throwback to the sound of the Shadows, on 004 like Hank and the boys covering a John Barry number. 006 - 008 add a slightly more contemporary edge to the sound.

Should I Buy: Difficult to see there's a career to be made here, aside from as a festival or backstage novelty act. **½


Taken from the second album by the six piece Swedish shape shifters Petter and The Pix Never Never is an unusual amalgam of lo-fi indie pop and the classic song writing style of, Souxsie and The Banshees.

Melodic, uptempo and at the same time, utterly barking, the album has an innocent, endearing multi layered quality despite being recorded 'live'.

More likely to find favour with NME readers as opposed to rock audiences, although the band offer more depth and intrigue than most of their contemporaries. **½


Who are they:
Dallas based 6 piece formed in 2006.

What's It Like: T
he first of 3 'mini' albums, following on from their Underdog Alma Mater debut - an album which broke into the US top 50 in 2009. An emo power pop, bubble gum band who add a hint of electronica to their clean cut act.

Should I Buy:
If Disney created a boy band, got Avril Lavigne to write a few songs, and got the Busted boys to oversee the project, Forever The Sickest Kids would be the result. Formulated in the extreme, but insanely commercial. Lock up your daughters if they ever make it as far as these shores. **


Who are they: Aussies. Formed in 1999.

What's It Like: Rudimentary lyrics, rudimentary playing, r and rudimentary production. Not unpleasant, but cheesy in the way that only Paul McCartney is capable of exceeding.

Should I Buy: In a word, 'no'. *

STARS & SONS It's Good For Me

Who are they: Brighton's rising Stars & Sons have garnered support from Jonathan Woss, Zane Lowe as well as being feted by the likes of Q and The Guardian as 'the next big thing'. To GRTR! that can only mean one thing - the kiss of death.

What's It Like: Hot Chip. And frankly, we'd rather have colonic irrigation with an ultra hot chilli sauce.

Should I Buy: Aaghhh!!!!!! Aaghhh!!!!!! Nurse, more ice!!!!!! *


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***** 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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