Tuesday, 20 September 2011

New music and new album: The Duke Spirit - Bruiser

Since I first heard The Duke Spirit, I have been hooked. For me it was such a fresh breath of air to hear someone who still makes good arrangements, have great guitar riffs, and last, but not least, the voice of Liela Moss. She also is one of the greatest front woman I have seen in a long, long time. She in some ways remind me (and others) of Debbie Harris in Blondie. Thought they are very different, she certainly have the same edge and is able to hold you under her spell.
It makes me believe in contemporary music. It's been a long time since I have seen this kind of soul, heart and drive.

On their latest album Bruiser, they have done it again. This is classic great rock'n'roll that makes you want to party and run around the room, but thankfully there are more depth to it as well. Lielas voice is the core of it all, she takes you by the hand and takes you through tough screaming hard core rock tunes, but also more tender moments with an intensity that reminds me of PJ Harvey at times, for instance in the beginning of the song "Sweet Bitter Sweet". The guitar riffs are always edgy and if they had just gone totally through every song, it would have been very boring, though quite powerful. Thankfully The Duke Spirit are also masters of building up to climaxes and arrangements of instruments and when to take one or all away to give the music air and excitement. Brick walls of guitars works extremely well in small portions and I think they know :)

In addition to all of this the intensity is always present. I feel like shaking my head constantly to the beat. I always like artists that play and sing like they would die if they weren't allowed to do it, and I get that feeling from The Duke Spirit. I also tend to love music that I would love to play myself, because it sounds like they are having so darn much fun. This is no exception.

My favourites so far are "Everybody's Under Your Spell", "Villain" and "Surrender". They all have some kind of "perfect hit" sense about them. They are just darn good songs and good . But I am starting to love the others more and more. They are growing on me for every play. I love how "Everybody's Under Your Spell" has an amazing beginning of rhythms. You think you finally got the rhythm, but then it changes, before it plummets into the deep and drags you with it, and reaches a climatic refrain. So sexy, so raw, so cool. "Villain" is just deep haunting and grand.

To fully appreciate The Duke Spirit, you need to see them live though. I can see them live in my head when I listen, and to me that adds an extra dimension to the music. So here are my favourite live clips and other useful links:

Bruiser on Spotify
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Monday, 19 September 2011

Great voices: Kelly Jones

If you have heard the voice of Kelly Jones of Stereophonics, you will not forget it or confuse it with something else. To me he has the quintessential rock'n'roll vocals. It's hard, raw and rusty, but at the same time it has so much emotion, sexiness, passion and feelings to it. When he reaches the first high note of Rooftop it just gives me the chills. And his version of Sumertime is my favourite version of the classic. At the same time he is one of the few who have managed to continue and push is band through after the 90's. They were after all one of the first brit-pop bands I listened to, even though I didn't get my ears really open for them until 2001 and the great JEEP album :) Strictly speaking I guess they are a little bit post-brit-pop, but to me they are part of the same period. Here are some of my favourites.

My first favourite:

Not as good as the album version, but still great: Spotify


With Tom Jones: Spotify

Other then that, the whole best of album is great stuff.
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