The Uber Rock Singles Club - July 2014 (Part 1) Print E-mail
Written by Dom Daley   
Saturday, 19 July 2014 04:00

It's been a while since our last Uber Rock Singles Club and we did have Record Store Day to contend with in-between but since that day back in April a few singles have dropped into the Uber Rock HQ PO Box that just couldn't go unreviewed.  So it's left to me and Johnny H, the usual suspects, to once again grace a few seven inch slabs of wax.  However this time around it's not just Wanda and No Front Teeth who have quality merchandise to offer us but a few exceptional others that are most welcome here in The Club. 

 

brandyrow07First up is the brand new double A side from Brandy Row, pulling together 'Decline Of A Better Man' and 'Crazy World'.  Now some of you will be familiar with his work as one of The Gaggers but this is his folksy roots rock and roll alter ego. If you ever liked The Suicide Twins or such records then you're going to love this. With horns, an upbeat drumbeat and some very nice guitar playing ‘Crazy World' is a fantastic sounding record, and to flip it over and get the brilliant 'Decline Of A Better Man' just about makes this the single of the year thus far no question about it. Brandy Row goes from strength to strength and it's available on the equally superb No Front Teeth Records too, so rest assured that it comes in several different versions with one being very limited so remember to try not to hang about if you want a copy.  

 

The-Mission-Different-ColoursNext up is a welcome return to the single format for The Mission and their brand new double disc release - 'Different Colours'. Released through the band’s own website what you basically have is a double gatefold with four brand new Mission songs sung by each member of the band, a novel idea I'm sure you'll agree.  Along with the very slick package you get a free poster, and to be fair the track on offer a very decent too.  Wayne Hussey is on disc one with Craig Adams on the other side. Hussey's tune is the vibrant and uptempo 'Atomic Heart' which has the sound of an early Mission song to it whereas Craig Adams much like his debut solo LP has gone for a more gothic tune as 'Carnival' embraces samples and soundscapes and he obviously has possession of that old Sisterhood drum machine. Single two meanwhile sees Simon Hinkler create more of a 'Carved In Sand' era guitar sound with the eastern flavours being used, and his singing voice is, how shall I put it? sixties psychedelic sounding especially on the intro. In fact after hearing all four I'd declare here that after careful consideration Mr Hinkler has indeed turned in the best selection of the four.  That said drummer Mike Kelly has pushed him pretty close with his twisted offering 'Never Leave Well Enough Alone'.  Something for Mission fans and vinyl buff in general no doubt about it.

 

plaindealersI know I'm not the only Singles Club member who likes a bit of old school punk courtesy of The Plain Dealers and here No Front Teeth deliver another fine 7” from the boys in ‘Don't Pull The Plug’.Available in a lovely 3D sleeve and pressed on nice see through green vinyl it’s also nice to see The Plain Dealers haven't lost any of that spunk that they have because 'Don't Pull The Plug' is a caustic needle in the red slab of rocket fuel. The B Side isn't too shabby either, 'Chainsaw' might be a little slower and more laid back but have NFT ever let us down with one of their singles? Absolutely not, another not to miss release from one of the best independent labels out there.

 

As you can probably guess I happen to take my 7" singles very seriously indeed and think it’s a must treasure format, one that should be loved and preserved for people to enjoy, because oh too often its neglected which really upsets me - maybe that’s a bit weird to many but the format lends itself superbly for sampling new darrel bathbands or a quick glimpse to what someone or a band is up to at that moment in time. Well next up was a real surprise for me because I really didn't see it coming at all. As we have Darrell Bath and his ‘Madame Zodiac’ EP on Sunthunder Records. How about this then? Five brand new tracks from the former Dogs D’Amour six stringer or UK Sub or Diamond Dogger, yeah Mr Bath is back on vinyl with this new EP on glorious seven inch vinyl.  'Dirty Rocky Road' isn't a homage to the sweet dessert also known by that name but is in fact a lovely laid back countrified rocker. It’s 'Clingin' On' with its Hammond and lazy beat that steals the show for me though but it's pushed closely by the third track on offer 'Tryin' To Live My Life Without You' a song that shows off some lovely guitar work on this Eugene Williams penned track. Flip this bad boy over and 'Living In Circles' and 'My Rifle, My Pony & Me' are waiting to greet you.  The former being a laid back tune and the Dean Martin cover is Bath sitting on the porch watching the sun set as it builds towards its lazy finale.  Yet another great single and with five tracks it offers real value for money too.

 

bowie diamond dogsThe next single doesn't really need much of a review to be fair except to say how iconic it is, and it sort of fits in with the last review seeing as Darrell played in a band of the same name as the tracks. Of course I’m talking about The Cry….no of course I’m talking about David Bowieand his ‘Diamond Dogs’ 40th Anniversary edition picture disc on Parlophone Records.This iconic picture disc sees one side play out a 33 1/3 version of the song whilst side two offers up a live in 2005 mix.  One thing for sure this song from 1974 has lost none of its bite (sorry couldn't resist that one) and to this day remains one of the finest intros to a song ever. Respect! 

 

nastyrumours02Nasty Rumours with ‘Rats In A Wheel’ Is the third and final No Front Teeth single this time out for The Club and again it’s available in several different sleeves. I picked up the acetate version of this Swiss edgy power pop punk rockin' single that sees two top tunes knocked out in fine fashion and sitting somewhere between The Jam and The Clash influence wise. ‘Rats In A Wheel’ is great lead tune with a great hook kin to something The Boys would knock out.  To my recollection NFT have never ever released a bad record and this latest offering is well worth you investigating.

 

 

Last but by no means least for this day one of The Uber Rock Singles Club’s July update we have The Urban Voodoo Machine and their ‘Pipe And Slippers Man’ single released on Cadiz Music.  Although I’m bending The Club rules here slightly as this is not a vinyl single but a CD single, it still contains three songs, two of urban voodoo machine singlewhich that give us an oh so brief glimpse into the brand new soon to be released long player from this superb London rock 'n' roll troupe. The lead track is your usual off the wall good time tune with an array of instruments used that would make any national orchestra blush, but I particularly like how the breakdown and Nick Marsh's guitar shimmer makes way for a blast on the Kazoo before the finale. This is superb feel good music executed meticulously. 'Jimmy Cuba' is an instrumental as the band take us on an all-out South American trip, Fandango indeed. To cap off this all off you have the heart wrenching 'Last Dance Of The Silver Wolf' (previously on the ‘Rare Gumbo’ album) that belongs to the fiddling of Robb 'The Kid' Skipper.  Now when is the new album ready Mr Angel? Your public awaits.

 

And with that I’ll pass you over to my partner in vinyl crime Mr Johnny H who will be along within the next 24 hours with part 2 of The Uber Rock Singles Club’s July update, featuring a whole lot more bands who are not on Wanda and/or No Front Teeth. Okay maybe my introduction was pushing the limits of truth a bit, but you know you love it….!!!!!!!