What a year this has been - 2016 has been the year that rock music has been yearning for since the turn of the decade.
Just from bands that didn't make the final ten, we've seen stunning new British bands break through in the likes of Milk Teeth and Zoax, while the Dillinger Escape Plan signed off with a record that eclipses even their own impeccable standards.
Never before has a list changed shape and order so often, and had so many records conspicuous for their absence. These ones, however, have made the cut...
Continue reading: David Straw's Top Ten Albums Of 2016
Letlive. are a band with something rare to defend in 2016, a perfect two-for-two with regards recorded output, and a flawless reputation in the live arena.
Building their reputation on politically-charged songs served alongside an incendiary, razor-sharp live show led by charismatic, enigmatic frontman Jason Aalon Butler, letlive, brought their brand of 'soul punk' to the forefront of this decade's musical landscape.
All eyes on If I'm The Devil, then. A sonic step away from Fake History and The Blackest Beautiful, it sets its stall out early. I've Learned To Love Myself is sprawling, expansive and a devastating tidal wave to Casino Columbus' flick knife to the eye.
Continue reading: Letlive - If I'm The Devil... Album Review
A week in music videos... Kanye West has been doing a lot of promotion for his edgy, rock-infused track 'Black Skinhead' (or 'BLKKK SKKKN HEAD' as it's otherwise known'), the lead single from his US and UK number one album 'Yeezus', so his anger when the unfinished video directed by Nick Knight was leaked earlier in July was unsurprising. He described the unauthorised distribution as 'heartbreaking' and no wonder; a video as unique as this was definitely worthy of a grand entrance but, nonetheless, the spoiler has definitely not affected the viewing experience.Watch the video for BLKKK SKKKN HEAD here.
French house star Kavinsky has already become a hit in his home nation with his debut album 'OutRun', released earlier this year, reaching number 2 in the charts and he's certainly turning heads overseas too. Teaming up with Canadian producer The Weeknd on one of his newest singles, Kavinsky delivers a driving dance beat with 'Odd Look' - the single from his new EP of the same name. The track also features on his album as a collaboration with fellow electronic musician SebastiAn. Listen to Odd Look here.
Let the fresh and unique combination of melodic, screaming vocals, heavy guitars with reggae vibes and inspiring lyrics, live.
The influences on Letlive.'s new record, Blackest Beautiful, are so clear it could pass as a Rage Against The Machine, Skindred and Bring Me The Horizon greatest hits constellation on a nu-metal version of NOW hits: 2013. With such a broad selection of styles, it is intentionally difficult to marginalise letlive. into a single genre, as they remain so positively unpredictable with each track supplying a different sound, yet containing the same unmistakable identification recognised with letlive.
Opening track 'Banshee (Ghost Fame)' immediately informs you what letlive. are all about - freedom. The band aren't afraid to use daring lyrics to compliment their daring sound; as 'Banshee' openly states, the tragic humour in the entertainment industry which can 'bastardise' an ideal or person. Their courage is admirable and their sound astonishing.
Continue reading: Letlive - Blackest Beautiful Album Review
letlive's new single, Muther, is taken from their album Post History, which was released in April 2010 on Tragic Hero Records. The album was re-released in April 2011 on Epitaph Records, with three additional tracks. Letlive will be finishing the Kerrang! Relentless Energy Drink Tour with New Found Glory in London tonight, after two sets at Manchester and Birmingham on the 15th and 16th February 2012 respectively.
Continue: Letlive - Muther
Letlive.'s new single, Renegade '86, is taken from their third album, Fake History, which was initially released in April 2010 on Tragic Hero but was re-released on Epitaph in April 2011 with an additional three tracks. Letlive. will be performing in the UK on the Kerrang! Tour in February 2012.
Continue: Letlive - Renegade '86
Back in my teens, the first music genre I truly fell in love with was hardcore punk, as well as some post-hardcore. While my friends were discovering the likes of Metallica and Iron Maiden, I was vibing like a maniac to Amen and Million Dead. If I saw the Epitaph logo on the back of the CD case, that was enough of a seal of approval for me. Bands like Refused and Glassjaw used to give me a dizzy thrill, but as my musical tastes grew and matured, those hardcore CDs became a little neglected and put back on the shelf. Nowadays, when a media frenzy ensues around a new hardcore band, I always have a little peak for old times' sake, but that original thrill has been replaced by a lesser nostalgic buzz. This is the case with Fake History, Letlive's first album on Epitaph.
Continue reading: Letlive, Fake History Album Review