Browsing Tag

Funk Rock

The Fortune Tellers show us the future of funk-rock with ‘Addicted to You’.

Funk, blues, indie and rock n roll all feed into the forcefully infectious single, Addicted to You, from the up and coming artist, The Fortune Tellers. The shimmering Gretschy guitar tones progress in slick grooves through the anthemic production that will be a hit with any fans of Blue Oyster Cult.

Monika’s rock vocals confront you with pure soul as they harmonise around the blues-rock instrumentals and choral backing vocals that allow Addicted to You to share reminiscence with a religious experience. Addicted to You is the title track from The Fortune Tellers’ debut album, released in July 2021.

The official music video for Addicted to You premiered on July 8th; you can check it out via YouTube.

Check out the album on Bandcamp.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

The Unwriters deliver serious sonic flavour in their blues-funk-rock single, ‘The Devil’s Run’.

The Devil's Run (Freedom & Justice) by Tᕼᕮ ᑌᑎᗯᖇITᕮᖇS

Italian alt-rock outfit The Unwriters have unleashed their latest blues-funk-rock single, The Devil’s Run (Freedom & Justice); any fans of Black Midi will want it in their ears. Despite the, quite literally, devilish sensibility to the single, there’s a potent amount of soul weaved into the psychotropic release.

The funk-riding bass lines, reverb-drenched choppy guitar chords, snapping percussion, and psych-heavy synths all pull together to offer some serious sonic flavour that you’ll want to devour time and time again.

The Unwriters may be relatively fresh from their inception, but between them, they have over 25 years of experience in the industry, which goes a long way in explaining the level of maturity in their highly nuanced sound that dabbles in everything from old school hip hop to gospel.

The Devil’s Run is now available to stream and download via Bandcamp.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Harry And The Hootenannies and ‘The Scam That Never Ends (Part 1)’

Harry Braswell, Ben Wescott, and Nick Woehrle – aka Harry and the Hootenannies – are all University of South Carolina graduates who met in a bagel shop and – long story short – put together a trio that’s been variously likened to Primus, the Grateful Dead, Rush, and Led Zeppelin. There’s certainly a proggy, psychie, rocky sort of feel to ‘The Scam That Never Ends’, but there’s some serious funk groove too, courtesy of some proper five-string bass grind and jazzy, folk-inspired drums.

‘The Scam That Never Ends’ is upbeat, bouncy, wacky, zany, and disjointed in a totally good way; there’s elements of Fantomas, early Faith No More, and Mr. Bungle in there too, with elements of ska and psychedelia amidst the funk-rock chaos. It’s all damn good fun, with an impressive amount of musical virtuosity and time-signature-changing noise-making (especially for a three piece) on offer here.

You can hear ‘The Scam That Never Ends (Part 1) on SoundCloud. Follow Harry and the Hootenannies on Facebook and Instagram.

Review by Alex Holmes

Square go for baroque in their theatric prog-punk rock single The World is Square.

With more funk and insanity than Mr Bungle’s debut album and a touch of baroque eccentricity writhing in the electrifying mix, Square’s chaotically enthralling Avant-Garde Rock track ‘The World is Square’ is a wild ride right from the intro.

The trio of three Canadian composers who are all accoladed in the contemporary scene made their debut in 2017. James Maxwell, Edward Top and Alfredo Santa Ana combined their eccentric visions, experimented with complex time signatures and allowed alchemy to crawl from the progressions that are as pleasantly disturbing as The Residents’. With Vancouver’s indie legend, Nathan Dillon’s, talent at their disposal, their powerful tracks that are unapologetically not everyone’s cup of tea hit with maximum artful impact.

It’s hard not to be drawn into Square’s experimentalism when they introduce listener’s to their sound with the following descriptor.

‘Multicultural, overeducated, and ironically trying to justify art-making in our current (dis)information age, Square asks a unique musical question: what happens when you know all the rules, and where all the roads in life lead, and somehow still get lost?’

For the full Square experience, you’ll want to check out the official music video which premiered on March 29th via YouTube. 

You can check out the full EP from Square via Bandcamp.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Bruce Mack – Ugly Head: Dystopic Industrial Be-Bop

Funk rock meets industrial metal in the latest single to be released by New York native Bruce Mack. It wouldn’t be out of place on the Judgement Night soundtrack. With his signature be-bop style paired with co-producer Michael Cox’s guitars that resonate like siren calls, it is impossible not to be consumed by the gritty track that gives the same vibe of preachers in apocalypse films.

‘Ugly Head’ is truly dystopic. Which sadly means that it perfectly captures the state of 2021. It lyrically attacks the odious souls that bitter our polarised society with affirming lyrics such as, “there are beasts on both sides”.

You can check out Ugly Head, which features on the Black Rock Coalition’s new compilation album, Rock n’ Roll Reparations by visiting blackrockcoalition.org. Or by checking out Bruce Mack via SoundCloud.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Babybrutha gave us a guide to aural salvation in their funk-driven soul-rock track ‘Black Vinyl’

Aural salvation-seekers with a penchant for funk-driven soul-rock will definitely want to delve into the latest release ‘Black Vinyl’, by Chicago-based fourpiece, Babybrutha.

Black Vinyl exhibits Babybrutha not just as dexterous artists, but as eccentric alchemists of soul-stroking high vibes; you’ll feel existentially lighter before the chorus hits. With Hendrix-style solos, vocals from Tim Lee which prove that his soul could sate the grim reaper for a decade and deep Motown grooves, it’s impossible to entertain any notion of apathy when the track is running through.

You can check out the official video to Black Vinyl by heading over to YouTube.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Moon Rabbit Retreat have released their psychedelically interstellar single ‘Sine Language’

Mixing alt-rock, prog, electronica, jazz fusion, and elements of funk, is never an easy task, but New Jersey experimentalists Moon Rabbit Retreat do just that with their new single ‘Sine Language’.

There’s something for everyone here; seventies TV incidental music, soaring meandering Rick Wakeman-esque keyboard excursions, Pink Floyd-like multi-layered catchy choruses, Neil Peart drum explosions, and some epic synth and guitar sounds, across the nearly seven-minutes of this, the lead single from their new EP ‘Habitat’ (available from the band’s website or from Bandcamp). It’s excellent, with ascending interwoven parts which feel at once familiar and encompassing and never exclusionary, some epic musicianship, and a pretty fitting play on words for a track title, too. It doesn’t come much better than that.

Check out ‘Sine Language’ – and download the album – from Moon Rabbit Retreat’s website; follow the band on Facebook.

Review by Alex Holmes

 

Westerner is set to release their polyphonically enrapturing Indie Synth Pop hit ‘Restless’

Westerner

Indie Synth Pop doesn’t come much more entrancing and anthemic than the forthcoming release ‘Restless’from the LA-hailing trailblazing masters of rhythmic electronica, Westerner.

With lockdown claustrophobia thick in the air, this exuberantly dynamic release perfectly captures the collective frustration as the desperation to live instead of simply exist intensifies. All the while, Restless feeds you euphoria through the deftly crafted sticky-sweet polyphonic progressions which unravel with a kick of psychedelia.

You’ll have to wait a little longer before you can check out Restless for yourselves. In the meantime, head on over to the artist’s Spotify to check out their earlier releases.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Indiana Heights put a modernist spin on Prog Rock-Fusion with “In the Thick of Things”

Indiana Heights

Indiana Heights treated us to a preview of forthcoming single In the Thick of Things which offers a modernist Avant-Garde spin on time-old tones.

There may be a serious amount of pioneering complexity within In the Thick of Things, but the Boston-based Prog Rock-Fusion 5-piece succeeded in making it alluringly accessible from the first hit.

With the bendy throbs of the bass, the eccentricity of the Jazzy piano progressions and the ardent passion which blasts from the sax, In the Thick of Things could only be described as mesmeric and insane in equal measure.

A frenetic Jim Jones-esque energy runs through the Jazzy Funk-laden ensemble – especially with the vocals – but the soundscape remains radio-ready all the same.

You can check out Indiana Heights via Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Mychael Gabriel wrestles with racism and intolerance with their Funk-Rock track ‘Fury’

With a funk/rock pedigree that includes collaborations with artists such as Sheila E, Stevie Wonder, Ringo Starr, John Legend, St. Vincent, and George Clinton, Mychael Gabriel is at the forefront of a new Minneapolis Sound generation. Now, with ‘Fury’, he brings forth probably the most danceable groove of a protest song that Michael Jackson never wrote.

Sounding like early, Off The Wall-era Jackson coupled with some of Nile Rodgers’ best ‘Chic’ guitar chops – plus some proper ‘guitar hero’ funk shredding on the solo at around the two-minute mark – ‘Fury’ rages at the injustice of peaceful protest scapegoating rioting and unrest, wrestling with racism and intolerance, but always with a style and groove that lifts it above being ‘just’ a protest song. ‘Fury’ is a bona fide funk/rock powerhouse of a track, chock-full of swagger and funk alongside its outrage and, well yeah, Fury.

Check out the video for ‘Fury’ on YouTube. Follow Gabriel on Facebook.

Review by Alex Holmes