Bless the punk heavens and praise the mullet Gods for we have an Amyl and The Sniffers’ debut album. The Queen of punk and her sniffers have composed a straight up, short and sharp album and it has been on repeat since it was released. If you like one song you’ll like them all. The album from start to finish retains the same fiery pace you want it to. You can close your eyes and imagine you’re in your mate’s garage listening to your friends jamming out. It’s unsophisticated in the best way.
Amy Taylor, the lead singer is “Gacked On Anger” and the lyrics easily explain why; “I’m working off my ass every single day for the minimum wage”. The lyrics in this album portray a clear message as to what the meaning of the songs are. There is no bullshit, no mystical questioning of ‘what could this song be about’, you know exactly what point Amy is trying to get across in each song, there’s no room for your own interpretation. Basically, just shut up and listen to what she has to say.
“GFY” is a brief but piercing expression of punk rage. Considering the song stands for go fuck yourself, It’s a pocket rocket of a song that will add fire to your flame. The album uses the resources of repetitive lyrics and chanting back vocals excellently. Although not the most technical album, Amyl and The Sniffers have produced a really strong group of songs. “Monsoon Rock” is like “Eagle Rock” but not alike at all and is a good song. There are no rules when it comes to this band, they come up with what they come up with and it just works.
Amyl and The Sniffers hold much greater importance than just providing us with riot tunes. They are so themselves and it is refreshingly inspiring. Amy Taylor represents the sickest of the sick leading women in the music industry right now. She is absolutely doing whatever the f**k she wants and making waves in the punk scene. She is not to be messed with. She takes complete control when on stage and has a raw, unprocessed voice. She doesn’t take shit from anyone and it’s really motivating to see as a woman. Amyl and The Sniffers are Melbourne punk royalty, and this album just nails this reputation on the head.
Calvin Clone – Machines [single]
Meshed together with the cyber sounds of machines throughout, it’s a weird but working combination
The year is 2040. The war between human vs machine is at the forefront. Is it too late for humans to take back the world from Artificial Intelligence? Are we already outrun by machines? Have no fear, Calvin Clone is here. “Machines” is the first of three singles released by Melbourne artist Calvin Clone. This first track allows listeners to see into the future through song. Setting it simply, according to Calvin Clone, our world is taken over by machines, and I don’t know about you but that doesn’t sound too crazy to me.
Founder and creator of Calvin Clone, Jack Alexandrovics, “combines dance, pop, industrial and rock to create a vision of cyberpunk.” This single shows a great connection music can have between modern and classic interpretation. There is a fantastic guitar riff throughout the song and really stands out when played. Meshed together with the cyber sounds of machines throughout, it’s a weird but working combination.
Alexandrovics’s theatrical voice adds yet another element to the song. He explains that his music is “closer to a theatre production than a conventional gig”. The vocal element in “Machines” exposes an ability to move up and down the scales flawlessly.
It is really exciting to see artists thinking outside of the conventional box. Calvin Clone explores modern and futuristic ideas yet keeps the integrity of a smashing guitar riff and untouched voice. There will be two more singles released by the end of the year which will all be part of his EP Kinetics. Calvin Clone is ambitious with visuals and sonics, and wants the live audience to be fully engaged in all aspects of his live performance. “Machines” has been stuck in my head for days. It’s catchy and engaging and I can’t wait to hear what else may be coming our way. This is only the beginning.
The Ritualists – Painted People
The Ritualists play some determined, strong-willed music
After listening to Painted People by The Ritualists, I was very surprised to learn that this is their debut album. This band shows a maturity in their music that I would not expect from a first album and provides inspirational sounding tracks with ‘reach for the stars’ type of guitar riffs. I hear a modern version of U2 in The Ritualists, along with an influence of Radiohead. Their songs are full, wholehearted post-punk hooks with a lead singer that has a sizeable range.
“Rattles” opens the album, and it’s the type of song that shows their audience that they are here to stay. It has a great build-up of excitement and intensity. The band explains that this song is “A combination of dark, deep-pocketed verses juxtaposed with big, flashy choruses is a key element to tracks”.
“Ice Flower” and “Worthiest One” welcomes an electronic wave to the album and showcases just how impressive lead singer Christian Dryden’s range is. His ability to hit those high notes with such conviction puts my falsetto abilities to shame. “Worthiest One” brings this sort of nostalgic feeling- it’s a rock ballad with a floaty guitar riff.
“She’s The Sun” is a great follow-on from “Worthiest One” as it transfers the mood upwards and directs the music into more of a hypnotic vision, which conveys “the band’s inner Sixties Love Child”. “I’m With The Painted People” has a really relatable background to the song. Dryden felt a larger than life inspiration from people like David Bowie and Simon Le Bon, these artists felt like soulmates, which can be lonely at times. It wasn’t until he ventured out into the clubs of the lower east side of New York which helped him feel comfortable to express his creative vision freely. The song is all about finding like-minded people.
There are hooks galore and catchy choruses in pretty much every song. “With this record, I’ve specifically tried to be anthemic,” admits Dryden. “I’ve always loved going to shows, where immediately after the performance, and even on the ensuing days after, you just can’t help but remember and sing the songs you’ve just heard. It’s almost like a higher form of communication.” The Ritualists play some determined, strong-willed music and Painted People shows hints of variations with different genres explored throughout. They sound motivated and in return have produced motivating music for their listeners.