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Profile for Iain Macaulay > Reviews

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Reviews Written by
Iain Macaulay "imaca11" (edinburgh)

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Between Wine And Blood
Between Wine And Blood
Price: £12.99

5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Although I do like the last album, 16 Sept. 2014
This review is from: Between Wine And Blood (Audio CD)
Although I do like the last album, Between Dog and Wolf, I did think that the somewhat 'soft' mastering let it down a bit and wished it had been given a bit more bite. I have to admit I was a bit cautious as to how the songs would convey live but that quickly disappeared. The songs work so much better live than recorded and fit so well with the older material. Now, to have those songs so quickly available as a live alum is fantastic. The sound is great and the songs really come alive as a complete body of work with bite and attitude a plenty.
I was also a bit cautious when I heard new recorded material was going to be coming out so soon after BDAW, with the same technical team behind it. But that too was quickly put to bed on hearing them. The six songs have a great sound, great production great mastering and more importantly are bloody great songs, probably some of the best the band have issued, in my humble opinion. They are also songs I can't wait to hear live. I think the fact that the release is not a full album helps. The songs are immediate and different enough from each other to keep you interested and make you want to hit repeat, repeatedly. This is a great release from an unstoppable band. And see if we can get another mini album in a years time....
Actually, maybe it's the way to go...
One very happy New Model Army fan.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Sep 19, 2014 10:19 AM BST

Price: £7.92

9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Dark rainy night... Leeds...1984...., 12 July 2010
This review is from: O.Children (Audio CD)
A generation ago this band would have been based in Leeds and played gigs with 'Red Lorry Yellow Lorry', 'The Sisters of Mercy', 'Alien Sex Fiend', 'Sex Gang Children', 'Bauhaus' and any other so called Goth band of the time. They would have been dying to put out a slew of classic 12" singles on 'Merciful Release' before putting out the full length album eponymous album on a major label and overdosing in a sea of pretence and speed bombs. To the band - Please don't do that because I think the best is still yet to come, if its done at your own pace.
This is a dark collection of songs for sure, but is also quite uplifting and affirming the way 'First and Last and Always' was in 1985 for the Sisters and 'Dawnrazor' was for 'The Fields of the Nephilim' in 1986. Yes they take their name from a bad Seeds song and there is a bit of his majesty 'Nick Cave' hovering over their sound but more in the guise of 'The Birthday Party' than the Bad Seeds, especially through the hidden track 'Lilly's Man'. I apologise for the over flow of name dropping here but if you are young and have just discovered this band and don't know where they are coming from then you could do no wrong by checking out those bands next.

'The Ruins' is the most evocative and immediate song on the album but every song is different and stands up in its own way. Not least for Tobi's voice. It is by no means a 100% complete masterpiece of an album but that is not a bad thing. This is an album that is going to grow and withstand repeated listens to get the full effect. The band are heading down the right dark alley and I for one look forward to the next album. They have captured the sound of the 'Batcave' club and hit the spot perfectly that 'The Editors' and 'White Lies' missed by a country mile. This is the real thing and the benchmark for a new golden dawn of dark fun. Watch this shadow.

In Excelsis
In Excelsis
Price: £3.99

9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Killing Joke get their groove back... and then some!, 30 Jun. 2010
This review is from: In Excelsis (MP3 Download)
The sound of discontent indeed!
What a way for the original line up to step up to the plate. This is a superb EP and more akin to KJ of old than the last couple of albums. But then every KJ effort sounds different to the last. This is a raw and in your face collection of songs but they are all incredibly catchy with great socially aware lyrics, as usual. Endgame has to be one of the best KJ songs in decades and I can't wait to hear it live. If anyone had trebidation that bringing Youth and Paul back into the mix was just a nostalgia trip that would create something soft and lackluster like most reunion cash grabbing exercises, how wrong you were. There are new bands out there at the moment that could never reach half the ferocious energy and bile that this collection of songs puts across. All hail the mighty joke 'A three dimensional screening of the end of the world.' Absolute quality!
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jul 8, 2010 12:31 PM BST

Offered by Fulfillment Express
Price: £18.85

4.0 out of 5 stars max goes back to the 80's, 7 Jun. 2010
This review is from: Omen (Audio CD)
This CD, regardless of some great solo's, has not got that much to do with metal. The music here is like max plundering his own record collection and writing songs that have more to do with 80's D-beat and Crust Punk than Heavy metal. Bands such as Discharge, Amebix, Extreme Noise Terror, and probably even Motorhead, are the sound of this CD which to me explains the negative reviews. This is rough, raw, in your face, brutal, and hardcore. There is no real let up in the proceedings other than Rise of the Fallen, which, not taking away from it being a great catchy song, seems slightly out of place on this CD. This CD to me is a great curve ball for the fans but if you want Soulfly of old watch the DVD that comes with it.


2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars surprisingly better than expected, 24 July 2009
This review is from: Spinnerette (Audio CD)
I never liked the distillers, even after seeing them live. Hated the Rancid rip off style, the faux punk attitude and the music. I'm a big Rancid fan - but i'm also a fan of the Oueens of the stone age, so there are many reasons for me to hate this album but I can't, it is actually quite good. Of course there is Josh Homme's big shadow straddling over it but there is also huge chunks of Siouxsie Sioux, Shirley manson and Kim Deal in there too. As an album it has more to do with 90's alt rock than punk or stoner so don't expect a raw dirty sound, overall it is quite processed but because of that it has a sound of its own and for that it is great. Personally speaking it could have been two songs shorter, which is why only 4 stars and there could have been a bit more variation to the song writing. Here's looking forward to the next album, hopefully sooner rather than later, unlike her ex and her current husband who's speed at releasing things is quite slow these days.

Let the Dominoes Fall
Let the Dominoes Fall
Offered by Fulfillment Express
Price: £20.27

1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars distilling a career into one album, 7 Jun. 2009
This review is from: Let the Dominoes Fall (Audio CD)
Now, every Rancid album has been different to the precedding one and this is no exception, thankfully they are not Green Day.
It's not going to win any new fans, really, lets be honest, it's preaching to the converted, in a good way. I love Rancid and like everyone else have been waiting a long time for this to come out, in between times seeing them live twice, on two different world tours, which is where they are at their best. A new band they are not but an excellent band of songwriters they have become.
Basically, what they have done here is taken, inadvertantly or by design i don't know, the best of their previous six albums and distilled it - please pardon the unfortunate pun there - down into one albums worth of eclectic material, and it works. Punk, Ska, Rockabilly, it's all there, which i personally think is a good thing, but no doubt some old Punx will think it a sell out, but who really wants to hear them re write Salvation and Ruby Soho on every album?
It is an interesting listen and needs repeated listening to really get it. I think it will make a lot more sense in retrospect after the hype and expectation has died away, and there has been a lot of that.
On the other hand the acoustic CD is superb and may even have been worth releasing as a CD on its own right. Now that really would have created a good Punk furore.
The only reason i am not giving the whole thing a full 5 stars is down to the monochrome/Discharge/Crass style packaging. There is even a nod to Discharge's Never Again in the lyrics to 'Disconnected'. While it looks good Rancid are too big for the DIY anarcho style imagery, they are not an anarcho band, never have been and will be.
And, as always, they have put a few too many songs on the CD. Just because you have them all writen doesn't mean you have to release them in one go. If there is that much spare material kicking around, as the DVD implies, why not release another album in eight months, now that would be cool.
Looking forward to hearing it being played live though and at least it is better than indestructable.
As an aside, you should go and read the 2K Kerrang review it's hillarious but then Rancid aren't Iron Maiden or Trivium who release the same album time after time to make it easier for the reviewers to absorb, thank god.

The First Three Years
The First Three Years
Price: £7.99

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars ....all the best stories, 17 Dec. 2008
This review is from: The First Three Years (Audio CD)
There's not much you can say about Frank Turner's music that hasn't already been said. Fantastic story lyrics, strong tunes, superb singing. This man deserves to be big and the quicker he steps out of the shadow of Million Dead and get promoted on his own immense tallent the better. The best live act i have seen this year, even better than Rage Against The Machine at T in the park, and that was spectacular. Looking forward to a new CD sooner rather than later.


4.0 out of 5 stars pure underground class, 17 Dec. 2008
This review is from: Pheromones (Audio CD)
Saw the video for Bundy on scuzz and on the strength of such a quirky song bought the CD. And it was well worth it. This is one tough band, musically intelligent and different enough to cover quite a few bases. If you like Queen Adreena, Muse, Skunk Anansie you will love this. There is also a touch of the epic euro goth sound around some of the more haunting aspects of the CD. The voice the girl has is astounding and there are even some guitar riffs that would not sound out of place on a Soulfly CD. This is a great CD and packs a mighty sonic punch in quite a clever way. If they come to britain in 2009 i for one will be in attendance.

A Poet's Life
A Poet's Life
Price: £8.38

12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars operation tim, and friends, in the area!!, 23 May 2007
This review is from: A Poet's Life (Audio CD)
Now, i hadn't heard about this CD until last week and bought it just to fit in the rack next to The transplants, Lars and the bastards and, of course, Rancid. I wasn't expecting much to be honest and boy was i put in my place. I dont know if it was due to todays weather being warm and sunny but this just hit the spot. Outside, annoying the neighbours with some good old ska and dub. And that's what this is 'old' ska. The production is absolutely spot on and the name of the game is Trojan. Its only 10 songs long, coming in at 33 minutes, which is perfect, the last two Rancid CD's could have done with a bit of quantity editing. This CD is not new, its not groundbreaking and its not exactly up-beat, there is a huge hazy green cloud hanging over this, but it is certainly good fun. Being backed by the Aggrolites has certainly added to the atmosphere of the songs. Of course the spirit of Rancid is evident here but, this is more in tune with Operation Ivy than Californias finest. Its Tim Armstrong solo album, what can i say the mans a genius and he's on a roll. Hell, even his lyrics have an almost optimistic tone to them, he must be in lurv, or at least in lust! This is my sound of the summer. You know, i think i'll go and put on some Lee Perry and kick back. Roll on the return of Rancid! Oh, one complaint, the DVD, that two tone effect on all ten videos gets a bit wearing after a while. It would have been nice to have had a bit of clarity on some of them, when you watch them you will know the ones i mean. Bring on the dancing Punx!

The Weirdness
The Weirdness
Price: £9.98

4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Do you think they care about critics?, 12 Mar. 2007
This review is from: The Weirdness (Audio CD)
It has to be said there was too much expectation around this album. But who got the first album the first time they heard it back in the day? It was way ahead of its time back then as is most of iggy's output. OK so the production is a bit ropy but the more you listen to it you find it does actually work and each time it sounds better. Go on give it another try. 'critics aint gonna like this.' Well i do and i dont really care!

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