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Posts tagged “wales

Album Review: “Home” by James Kennedy

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“Keep an eye out for Kennedy, he’s a man going places” – BBC Radio 1

Radio 1 in this case knows what they are talking about. As I listened to Welshman James Kennedy’s upcoming record Home, it became clear that he was a man with a strong artistic vision. Central to this record is the powerful nature of the song structure. The choruses soar and the verses are tinged with a driving force that calls you to listen intently.

Incidentally the core inspiration behind this record is, as Kennedy’s PR agency told me, his exploration of depression and utilizing the music as therapy. As a fellow sufferer of severe depression, I totally get this. And this understanding is helpful in looking at the record as more than just a collection of great songs.

The songs are powerful and can only come from a place that understands what darkness truly looks like. James Kennedy’s vocals are modern, refreshing, and ultimately an amalgamation of numerous stylistic influences (rock, soul, blues and pop). For me, James may very well be the Welsh Jeff Buckley, as his songwriting reminds me so much of the late, great performer.

Home is an uplifting journey for the listener and it reminds you to dust yourself off and keep pushing on in a hostile world.

Home can be pre-ordered at https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/home/id1182038899

James Kennedy can be found at:

http://jameskennedystuff.com/

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Album Review- “You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet!” by The Spitting Pips

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I remember when Gene Simmons, an over-the-hill rocker with a massive tongue, decided to declare rock music as dead. I was pretty surprised since my music journalism has introduced me to some incredible rock groups. Another group I get to add to this list is The Spitting Pips and their 2015 EP You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet!.

Hailing from Rhyl, North Wales (since I’m Welsh here’s my obligatory “Cymru am byth!”), the band describes their style as “Acid Soul Rock n Roll” with influences from the 60’s and 90’s music scenes. You hear these sounds in You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet!, with songs that remind you of groups like the Stone Roses, Primal Scream, Oasis, and others.

This band is not a derivative group, however, as the EP shows that The Spitting Pips are able to take you from the highest of reverb highs, to infectious melodies and grooves. The band is interested in making music that actually matters, in that, it is about good music over writing hits (and yes there is a difference).

Rather than chasing cheap sounds to make a quick chart topper, The Spitting Pips are making songs that are sonically deep and atmospheric. You are given the rock n’ roll sound you crave if you loved the 90’s UK rock scene and bands that were a part of it. The Spitting Pips have earned the respect of bands from that era, touring with Happy Mondays and the Inspiral Carpets (whose singer I interviewed here).

All in all this is a band I highly recommend as another reminder that rock is alive and well.

The Spitting Pips can be found at:

http://thespittingpips.bigcartel.com/

https://www.instagram.com/thespittingpips/