If rock music were made of gold, these eight nuggets would this week’s be 24-carat contenders.
Trivium - Blind Leading The Blind If you’re of the opinion that Trivium don’t have a sense of humour, this peculiar video suggests you’re very much mistaken. Set in a bar torn straight from the set of a David Lynch movie, Blind Leaving The Blind is performed by a group of middle-aged rocker stand-ins, while the band themselves are reduced to the role of extras, with bassist Paolo Gregoletto beating a small child at darts. For money.
Mike Tramp - Give It All You Got With a hint of Tom Petty’s I Won’t Back Down in the guitar, Give It All You Got is a brightly polished wedge of melodic rock with a chorus catchier than measles. “Share this with the whole world,” says Mike, “and don’t forget to order the album, as there are almost no shops around where it can be bought.” Alright!
Blitzen Trapper - All Across This Land Blitzen Trapper is an anagram of ‘Zebra Pelt Print’, which is great, but not as great as All Across This Land, the title track from the band’s forthcoming album, which is a fine scrap of 70s FM rock with a sleek modern edge. The accompanying clip is described as a “visualiser,” which we believe to be a bit like a lyric video, but without any lyrics.
Exxasens - Hugeness The video starts off as if it were filmed by a drunk, but the wibbly-wobbly camerawork makes more sense once this thudding prog monster of a tune is up and running and discombobulating its audience. Exxasens are from Barcelona, but it sounds to us like they’re from outer space, such is the cosmic fury exuding from their very pores.
Walter Trout - Almost Gone Back from the brink after a life-saving liver transplant, the blues master’s bounced back – with this feast of harmonica, driving chorus and virtuosic guitar. Catch the rest of his triumphant return to form on (42nd album… yes 42nd, if you count his pre-solo stuff with Canned Heat and John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers) Battle Scars.
Jackaman - Can’t Find My Way Home Former Saint Jude frontlady Lynne Jackaman has been creating a bit of a buzz lately with her soul-rock crossover voodoo, and this stripped-back cover of Blind Faith’s only great song clearly demonstrates why. Lynne does’t so much nail the song as hammer it into the ground, where it lies broken and sobbing, probably pleading for mercy. Strong stuff indeed.
The Bloody Nerve - Place To Hide Featuring the kind of lascivious riffing Keef would be proud of, Place To Hide is a rollicking nugget of hard-nosed blues’n’roll with a driving piano backing. It’s taken from the Nashville band’s forthcoming album Taste, which they recorded without any record company support. “It’s kind of like natural child birth,” says their excellently named guitarist Stacey Blood. “Liberating and inspiring, but hurts like a sumbitch.”
Ume - Barricade Barricade’s video is the greatest thing we’ve seen in ages. It features a sinister child, an even more sinister box, and the most amount of blood you’ll see this side of an abattoir. In fact, it’s probably NSFW unless you work in abattoir. There’s also a song, but we weren’t paying much attention, so excited/terrified were we by the visuals. So we listened again, and it’s a gleeful scrap of shoegazey alt-rock.