Chris Devotion and The Expectations Break Out

Tuesday, 27 May 2014, 20:28 | Category : Articles
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By Jason Barnard

After hearing the opening chords of Chris Devotion and The Expectations new album ‘Break Out’ I knew I was in for something special. It’s eleven strident tracks capture your heart but importantly they’re just great pop/rock songs.  I had to instantly find out who was making such an exciting racket and speak to their lead singer/songwriter Chris Devotion. 


All hail the new Costello/ Springsteen and let’s take back the charts!

George Young, Harry Vanda and George Alexander

Wednesday, 21 May 2014, 19:37 | Category : Articles
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By Nick Warburton

The legendary Marcus Hook Roll Band’s classic album Tales of Old Grand-Daddy is being re-issued on 2 June with two previously unreleased tracks and three rarities.


The album saw former Easybeats Harry Vanda and George Young collaborate with Young’s older brother Alex Young (George Alexander of Grapefruit fame) on the UK recordings.

However, it is the album’s Australia-recorded tracks that will probably be of most interest to record collectors as they feature the first ever recordings by George Young’s younger siblings, AC/DC’s Angus and Malcolm Young.

Nick Warburton looks back at the various projects that Harry Vanda and George Young pursued with George Alexander after The Easybeats and Grapefruit broke up and the formation of The Marcus Hook Roll Band:

Tír na nÓg – Looking Up

Saturday, 17 May 2014, 20:47 | Category : Welcome
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Tír na nÓg , the songwriting duo of Leo O’Kelly and Sonny Condell, were one of the leading lights of the early 70s folk scene. Releasing three albums and touring with most of the key acts of the time their music was met with critical acclaim and an enduring fan base. Crucially however, are their songs. A marriage of equals Leo and Sonny both wrote tracks that reflected their varied musical influences.

Tír na nÓg - Sonny Condell (left) and Leo O'Kelly (right)

Tír na nÓg – Sonny Condell (left) and Leo O’Kelly (right)

After breaking up in the mid-70s they are now recording new material and touring, playing ageless tracks old and new. Just one listen to “Two White Horses”, “Strong In The Sun” or indeed new EP “I Have Known Love” and you’ll know instantly what I mean.

With an imminent UK tour, the Strange Brew’s Jason Barnard goes over the Irish sea to meet the legends that are Tír na nÓg:

The White Kites UK Mini Tour

Monday, 12 May 2014, 20:16 | Category : Live, News
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The most inventive, witty psych band of the current scene, The White Kites are embarking on a short mini UK tour and in their own words: “The time has come! The Kites are going to fly over Albion.”

White Kites UK Tour poster

A show not to be missed – a splendid time is guaranteed for all!


14th May – 10.30pm – New Cross Inn, London
15th May (with ‘Pink Fairies’) – 7pm – Robin 2, Bilston, Wolverhampton
16th May (with ‘The Things’) – 9pm – The Eagle Inn, Salford
17th May – 7.30pm – IPO Festival, Cavern Club, Liverpool
17th May – 6pm – IPO Festival, Cavern Pub, Liverpool

The White Kites - Percival Buck
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Jeff Curtis & The Flames – Part 2

By Nick Warburton 

West London R&B band Jeff Curtis & The Flames were regulars at the famous Ealing Club in the early 1960s where they rubbed shoulders with the nascent Rolling Stones. After recording unsuccessfully for Joe Meek on several occasions and briefly backing Johnny Kidd, they ultimately morphed in The Kool in 1967. 

Jeff Curtis & The Flames late 1964

Jeff Curtis & The Flames, late 1964/early 1965, left to right: Louis McKelvey, Jeff Curtis, Dave Wiggington, Pete Burt (drums), Jeff Lake and Malcolm Tagg-Randall (soon to be replaced by George Russell)

Individual members later toured and played in such far flung places as Germany, Italy, Romania, Sweden, South Africa, Canada and the United States and worked with such notable bands as The A-Cads, Influence, The Penny Peeps, Manchester’s Playboys, Johnny Kidd & The Pirates and The Army. 

In the second part of an exhaustive history, Nick Warburton tells the story of one of the UK’s long forgotten bands:


Led Zeppelin Remasters On The Way

Friday, 9 May 2014, 18:47 | Category : News
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As any music lover knows, being a diehard fan of a specific artist can often lead to a lot of spending. That’s especially true for anyone who absolutely needs to own every piece of music released by said artist. And for the Led Zeppelin faithful out there, you’re all about to get hit with a mighty wallet wallop.

Led Zeppelin

On June 3, the group is rereleasing its first three albums as part of a campaign to rerelease its entire (!) nine-album catalogue. As outlined on the official Led Zeppelin site, the audio has been remastered and there’s been a lot of digging through the vaults to find new material to share with listeners. While there will be a single-disc option (on CD and vinyl) for anyone who just wants to hear the remastered songs, you will also find deluxe editions with a companion disc (and a mighty box set beyond that filled with goodies).

So why would anyone be interested in these rereleases? Well, it’s all about that companion disc, which is different for each album. Attached to Led Zeppelin I, for example, there is a previously unreleased live recording of the band’s Oct. 10, 1969 performance at the Olympia in Paris, France. That show included a 15-minute version of “Dazed and Confused” (awesome) along with early takes on “Moby Dick” and “Heartbreaker,” both of which appeared on the band’s follow-up. As for the other two albums, you’ll hear outtakes, alternate versions/mixings, and similar.

But what can you do until June 3? Good question, but that’s where some additional research surrounding one of music’s most beloved bands comes into play. In looking for ways to fill the void, I came up with a few options related to Zeppelin and, in one case, former guitarist Jimmy Page.

With the poker boom of the early 2000s leading to a surging popularity surrounding the sport, chances are you have taken part in a game or two (or many more). If so, you should make you’re combining your love of ’60s and ’70s rock with your favorite musical acts. Let’s say you’re new to poker, though, and feeling inspired to give it a shot after hearing the guys’ take on BB King classic “Gambler’s Blues”. Well, first you’ll need to learn the ropes so that you’re not the laughing stock of the table. Don’t worry, it doesn’t take long get accustomed to the game, though mastering it will take a lifetime. From there, you’ll need to right set of chips and cards to accompany your poker night—that’s where these bad boys come in. Get one for yourself and, who knows, maybe no one will notice if your game isn’t up to snuff.

If a (perhaps new) game like that isn’t enough to fill the void, you could also attempt to catch one of of Page’s upcoming speaking engagements. As a means of promoting the remastered albums, he’s heading to the Agganis Arena in Boston, Massachusetts on May 9 and the L’Olympia in Paris, France on May 21. The only problem? They’re both pretty much invite-only affairs. The first is actually for the Berklee College of Music’s commencement while the second is a full-on premier-like event that will feature music from the albums and insight from Page himself. If you (like most of us) can’t make it to Paris, you can always just watch it from home on the band’s YouTube channel.

Below you can watch the trailer for the deluxe/remastered ‘Led Zeppelin II’ below.