Angst-throbbing garage punk rock ‘n’ roll with the Mourning Birds

Mourning Birds continue to fly high above the rest, somewhere between The Ramones and Dr Feelgood, and always with a full tank of petrol.
Mourning Birds continue to fly high above the rest, somewhere between The Ramones and Dr Feelgood, and always with a full tank of petrol.

Mourning Birds are back with their brand new riff-chugging heavy angst-throbbing garage punk rock ‘n’ roll single, ‘Leave Me Alone.’

Mourning Birds continue to fly high above the rest, somewhere between The Ramones and Dr Feelgood, and always with a full tank of petrol. ‘Leave Me Alone is 100% sweaty garage rock ‘n’ roll. LOVE IT!

The video was directed and designed by the up and coming Stephen James of ‘2Steaks Production’ and the high standards represent the progress of a band on the rise.

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_Xd3MyVM-AY

The band aim is to get across the energy that is put into the live show and with this audibly achieved by Rhys Downing in-between engineering Mark Ronson/Bruno Mars smash hit ‘Uptown Funk’ the achievement to match this success with such raw energetic imagery cannot be understated.

One day all rock ‘n’ roll will have this much energy… again!

The next big step in the Mourning Birds journey has finally arrived in truly glittering form. Through the brand new heights of last year’s Camden Crawl and The Great Escape Festival whilst riding off the back of BBC Introducing Single of the week recognition, BBC Radio 1 , BBC 6 Music, Amazing Radio and NME coverage the band wrote and recorded their debut album which was then released via the notoriously reputable P-Vine records in Japan.  The album will be available in the UK soon… I hope!

Mourning Birds will be playing in London @ The Black Heart, Camden on Thursday 5th March via Club Fandango (In association with Music Week).

Mourning Birds – Exile – Free download

Mourning Birds play exciting high energy garage punk rock & roll
Mourning Birds play exciting high energy garage punk rock & roll!

After their brilliant debut release ‘Oh Yeh!Mourning Birds spent the rest of the summer locked away in Foel Studio in Wales recording their debut album.  The album has since been released via P-Vine Records in Japan.

To mark the next chapter in the band’s short but exciting story so far, the garage rock three-piece have released a free download. Exile is a quintessential Mourning Birds track. This is another exciting high energy slice of garage punk rock & roll!

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From supporting Slaves at their home coming show to Camden Crawl, from the pages of NME magazine to the ears of BBC Radio 1 listeners up and down the country, Mourning Birds don’t do things by halves and have excited and infuriated in great measures. 2015 is already geared up to an exciting start with the three-piece equipped with a debut album ready to be unleashed on a public fast catching on to a garage rock n roll revival, it starts with Exile.

Catch Mourning Birds Live:
Mourning Birds @ Ramsgate Music Hall, Ramsgate 17/01/15

Rockabilly: The Twang Heard ’round the World – The Complete Illustrated History

Rockabilly: The Twang Heard 'round the World - The Complete Illustrated History
Rockabilly: The Twang Heard 'round the World - The Complete Illustrated History

Before I even opened this book, I fell in love with it!  A sumptuous hardback cover photo of Elvis strumming his acoustic and singing his heart out; with a cut out to top and right with the word ‘Rockabilly’ designed to mimic the King of Rock n Roll’s debut album cover; and one ‘borrowed’ by The Clash for their album, London Calling.

In 1977 I was a 12 years old quietly listening to Radio Luxembourg on my little yellow transistor radio pressed against my air when DJ Tony Prince announced in a broken voice that Elvis, the king of rock n roll, was dead.  At the time the only effect this had on me was surprise that it meant so much to someone that he stopped playing the contemporary music I tuned in every night to hear, and began playing back-to-back songs by Elvis Presley (though he was the president of the UK fan club)!

I never forgot that night in August 1977, though rock n roll at the time for me was God Save The Queen, The Sex Pistols and The Clash.  But as I became older, and the constraints of Punk Rock made way for Post-Punk and New Wave, influences from further afield began new hybrids of music in the late 1970’s. Retro sounds merged with punk angst and soon there was a flood of new terms and genres to describe new sounds.

In 1979 my musical tastes were broadened by the re-emergence of Ska music as The Specials paid homage to 1960’s Jamaican legends such as Prince Buster, while a group called The Cramps took influences from old 1950’s Rockabilly, b films, 60’s surfing and garage music to create a grungy, dirty, punk-riddled Rockabilly sound that had music journalists fighting over new labels – Punkabilly, Psychobilly, in fact anything with ‘billy’ in the title.

Like The Specials signposted me to 1960’s Jamaican Ska and Bluebeat, The Cramps opened my ears to less commercial, garage punk Rock n Roll and in turn the original recordings for the Sun Records label by Elvis Presley. Great songs like ‘Mystery Train’ and ‘That’s Alright Mama’ sounded so wonderful to me, where my opinion of Elvis and Rock n Roll had hitherto been tainted by the likes of ‘Blue Suede Shoes’ & ‘Hound Dog’.  It was not so much the quality of the songs, but the clean, over-produced production that left me cold, whereas the original Sun recordings gave the music a certain edginess and something more akin to garage and punk.

So, now I am reviewing an illustrated history of Rockabilly music – a music born out of country, bluegrass, jazz, and the blues in the 1950’s that became known to the world in a more commercial sense as rock ‘n’ roll.

Rockabilly: The Twang Heard ’round the World – The Complete Illustrated History by Greil Marcus tells the history of the genre and its main characters.  Of course there is a large splash on Elvis Presley’s first steps to becoming the ‘king of rock n roll’ along with other great Sun Recording artists like Carl Perkins, Johnny Cash, Roy Orbison and Jerry Lee Lewis; along with such legends as Gene Vincent, Eddie Cochran, Buddy Holly & Wanda Jackson along with lesser known artists of the day, as the book relives the golden years of Rock n Roll between 1955-1959 full of photos, movie posters, rare records, the guitars and the fashion.

The story picks up again in the late 1970’s with the revival of Rockabilly with bands such as The Cramps and The Stray Cats. I never knew Brain Setzer, the amazing guitarist & singer with The Stray Cats almost joined The Cramps in 1979 before he enjoyed a short burst of worldwide success in the early 1980’s with songs ‘Runaway Boys’, ‘Rock This Town’ & ‘Stray Cat Strut’.  During this period, the UK was flooded with garage punk / rockabilly bands influenced by The Cramps, those early days of rockabilly from the 1950’s and garage punk of the 1960’s; and the final chapter is a show of strength for the influence of rockabilly today in the music and fashion of artists like Imelda May.

This is a truly great book, a wonderful read, assembled with great loving care by Greil Marcus and worth every penny to all rockabilly psychos or just plain music lovers that have ever wondered where rock n roll came from.

Rockabilly: The Twang Heard ’round the World – The Complete Illustrated History by Greil Marcus published by Voyageur Press in hardback priced £20.00 (RRP).

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Michael Monroe confirmed for Download 2010

michael monroe - sami - ginger
michael monroe - sami - ginger

Legendary punk rocker Michael Monroe is hitting the UK again this summer having just been announced for the infamous Download Festival 2010! While the band demos new material in NYC for their debut, they’re still finding time to get a few summer festival appearances in.

After a sensational stint at SXSW this year followed by a captivating debut UK show earlier this month at London’s Islington Academy, the band, completed by Ginger from The Wildhearts, Sami Yaffa, Steve Conte and Karl Rosqvist, are more than a little bit excited to revisit the UK audiences.

Ginger shared some fond memories of Download;
“Fuck yeah!! Download is the first and the best. I was educated at Donnington Monsters Of Rock, it was always the place where magic happened and the stories would last a year until the next one. I’ve had so many great moments at this festival (bad acid trips, public blowjobs by complete strangers, arms impaled onstage by the Psycho Cyborgs …the list goes on) and playing here with Michael Monroe continues the theme of great moment after great moment. We’re bringing the punk, we’re bringing the rock n roll, now all we need is you. Be there or be elsewhere.”

Great stuff, Rock & Roll or what?

Here is a current list of Michael Monroe upcoming gigs around the world:

09.05.10
Highline Ballroom
New York
USA

05.06.10
Helsinki Live 2010
Helsinki
Finland

09.06.10
Sweden Rock
Sölvesborg
Sweden

12.06.10
Download Festival
Derby
UK

03.07.10
Peace & Love Festival
Borlänge
Sweden

10.07.10
Ruisrock
Turku
Finland

16.07.10
Pakkahuone
Tampere
Finland

17.07.10
Simerock
Rovaniemi
Finland

07.08.10
Summer Sonic Festival
Osaka
Japan

08.08.10
Summer Sonic Festival
Tokyo
Japan

15.08.10
Ankkarock
Vantaa
Finland