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Four bands that will break your balls...

Hello everyone reading this (namely Michelle, Jeremy and my Mother),

I am a guest blogger! Let me introduce myself...

My name's Steve and I'm a musician (which is a fancy way of saying “I'm unemployed”). I play in a couple of bands, broadly in the genre of “rock”, with my main focus being “The Blue Screen of Death”. I also do various bits of ridiculous sillyness which I call “comedy” under the guise “Smeghead Steve”, so I have no qualifications or accreditation which entitle me to fairly pass criticism on music. Therefore I am perfect for blogging.

Here are four bands of various stature that are all currently making my ears purr:

Pohl - http://pohl.bandcamp.com/album/pohlsmoker

When I was younger, I submitted a question to CITV's “It's a mystery with Neil Buchanan”. On my postcard, scrawled in crayon were the words “How is it that the less people there are in a band, the more noise they are able to make?”

I never heard back from Neil, but after years of crying myself to sleep, I came to understand that his silence was all the answer I needed. It is an unanswerable question, demonstrated and exemplified by this pair of west country doom junkies.

Pohl are a two piece Bristolian guitar and drums duo. If you've ever crashed a van into a garage whilst high, you'll be able to imagine what they sound like.

My only disappointment with their music is that they don't sing in a west country accent. At very least they should cover “Im a Cider drinker” by The Wurzels.

If Daleks developed arms and opposable thumbs, they would make music as evil as this. These two are more than ready for the impending apocalypse. In fact, they're quite looking forward to it.

My personal favourite is the last track on “Pohlsmoker” - “Vampire”.

Muddy Miles - http://muddymiles.bandcamp.com/album/another-headache

People use the word “epic” too freely these days. I know this because I am one of those people. However, it is the perfect adjective to describe these musically gifted vagrants. I feel the band members' nomadic nature (they move house more often than Nick Clegg breaks promises) is reflected in the ambiance they create.

I've always wanted an arch nemesis, and in the Muddy Miles drummer, Andy Baxter, I found one. We agreed to become mortal enemies after playing a show together a year or so ago. The result is random outbursts of aggressive, sometimes violent behaviour, often ending in packets of McCoys crisps being hurled. Mainly at Andy's face. I encourage everybody to go see these guys live and throw individually packaged deep fried potato snacks of your choice at Andy's face. An added bonus of this is that their frenetic live shows are almost certainly their strongest attribute.

Their recently released “Another Headache” was recorded at the excellent “The Ranch Production House” in Southampton and has a passive/aggressive feel. It's relaxed, but pent up. It has ebb and flow, chicken and chips, Dalziel and Pascoe etc.

Brace yourself, because Muddy Miles are armed, dangerous and in possession of some serious “prog” sounds.

Listen to “You blew it up” for some monkey film referencing goodness - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eRPUJhTMqE0

Burn The Fleet - http://burnthefleet.bandcamp.com/album/burn-the-fleet

Burn The Fleet are a local band. This means that they live near where I live. Depending on where you live, this may or may not be true for you too. However, they are deservedly acquiring a national reputation and have managed to “break free” from the stranglehold of Southampton. They're fronted by the bass-wielding bearded behemoth, Andy Convey, who's previous band (from way, way back), “Sidecar46”, were great, but “Burn The Fleet”, are on a new level. In fact, it's not just a new level, it's a whole different game.

Production credit again must be directed to The Ranch Production House who have a keen understanding of the guys' balance between melody and mosh. Music and production-wise it is a delicate destruction. Imagine being punched by someone wearing a glove made from a lace doily.

This band are a herd of Persian War Elephants (I'm thinking specifically of those featured in Age of Empires II) that have been to finishing school. They will trample you to death, but they'll do it with a remarkable grace and elegance.

BTF carve out catchy melodies for fun. They are skilled aural butchers carefully serving up the finest cuts of succulent-delicious-meaty-musical-goodness.

I recommend “Six Sisters” - http://burnthefleet.bandcamp.com/album/the-modern-shape

Turbowolf - http://soundcloud.com/hassle-records/turbowolf-read-write

Earlier this year, these guys signed to Hassle Records. They're doing phenomenally well for themselves, and certainly don't need my help in promoting their brand of sonic assault.

My band were lucky enough to support Turbowolf when they brought their form of audio blitzkrieg to Southampton on their tour supporting Dinosaur Pile Up (who are also tres good). Since then, I am able to identify when my band are doing something important (a big gig, photoshoot etc.) by the fact that our guitarist will turn up wearing his Turbowolf Tshirt (incidentally, their artwork and merch is rad).

Listening to them, I imagine I'm driving a super-charged bulldozer through a field of X-factor contestants. They are the musical equivalent of Heroin (without any negative side effects). It's angry, but still with enough focus on a good choon to mean you can sing along without the neighbours calling the police suspecting the occurrence of domestic violence.

“Ancient Snake” sums up what Turbowolf are all about - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MrUZumvQWjc

The Blue Screen of Death

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