blackheart afterglow
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Battle of the Bands down to the wire

Our local music scene is thriving at present and the Ma Murphy's battle of the bands final was further proof.

While bands such as The Heartbreaks, Idol Minds and Liar Liar have grabbed the headlines of late, five entrants in the Irish pub's contest on August 25 are definitely coming up on the rails.
Up to 300 people jammed into the pub to hear the performances from punk metal teenagers Scarred ID, some of whom were only 15, rockers Blackheart Afterglow, funk soul Big Door Open, melodic pop act The Remedy Project and loud and proud heavy metal-heads Massive Wagons.

Scarred ID had their army of young fans screaming with excitment as they played a mixture of original songs and covers including Green Day's American Idiot and Enter Sandman by Metallica. They and Massive Wagons ran the eventual winners, Blackheart Afterglow from Morecambe, very close but in the end the five piece's dynamic brand of brooding rock 'n' roll earned them the £500 prize. The band, fronted by Turner, are tipped to go on to great things.

The music was fantastic and there was a great atmosphere in the pub. Judges were Greg Lambert, chief reporter and entertainments editor for The Visitor newspaper, Cherish Otoo from Ma Murphy's and musicians Cameron Seddon and Jeepster Gaz (Rattle and Hum).

Report by The Visitor 6/9/2011 - The Visitor Newspaper


Blackheart After Glow formed in September 2010. Their new EP is available online and is soon to be printed, pressed and released to the wider world. Red Rose had a listen to see what we thought.

For a band so recently formed, opener “Crash” gets off to a mature and strong (like a cheese) start. The guitar rocks, they sound cool and heavy; giving the song real presence and attitude.

Another good part is the vocals; slow and broody, they lead the song nicely, partnering the guitars well and giving the song an edge. Lyrically, the song is mysterious and a little obscure. “Spike the waves and throw them to the shallows” doesn’t really mean anything straight away, but it sounds good, which is essentially what you want from a song.

Indeed I have my feet tapping and I have repeated my listening more than enough times before actually writing anything. I am not just reviewing this song, I am now a fan.

The chorus with the main vocals, helped with the aid of higher backing vocals, is something done on millions of Brit Pop style songs, but here it works well and takes the song on; keeping you interested and thinking yeah, this is decent. A really positive start.

After I ate my Quavers, I moved on. Track two is “Pressure Drop” and this too impresses me a lot. The opening few moments of guitar had me feeling like I was listening to a U2 record and from then on in there was lots of impressive sounds.

Again the vocals are good; this time quicker and pronounced, with more passion. They kick at you and again, despite being in the university library at 11.05pm, my feet are tapping and I am humming along. Not bad for a first and second listen.

I obviously cannot comment on what influences a band, because I don’t know, but the middle parts of this song, and the guitar elements towards the end, sounds to me like some of the later Oasis songs; fast and frantic and then the last moments of the songs sound influenced by the better parts of “The Second Coming” by The Stone Roses or The Seahorses.

Maybe I am wrong, but that is certainly how it sounds and it works well.

So far, so good. This moves us onto the song “Seven Sisters”, which closes this brief EP. I hate to sound like I am writing a review solely to make the band happy, but I can’t really find anything bad about this song either.

Less guitar and more vocal, this starts stripped down and sounds very good. Accompanied by virtually no instruments, the voice stands out and makes you listen, it’s punky, funky and a little bit folk. I like it.

After this, the rest of the song goes back into the indie style we saw before and again the loud, higher vocals in the chorus appear. If I was to have a pop at anything, it would be that I would like to have seen more of the song in the minimal guitar and powerful folksy vocals style that the song started with, but saying that, the songs still sounds good as it progresses. It’s a winner too.

Overall, I have to say I am a massive fan of this three-track EP, I am almost saddened that it is only the three, because for a band that has been together for such a short time, they have hit a winning formula.

Verdict: Buy it - Red Rose Music


Discography

Walk into the Sea EP - released Sept 2011
Pressure.Crash.7 EP - released april 7 2011

Both EP's have add national and international air play.

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Bio

Born September 2010 The Blackhearts quickly got onto the North of England's live music circuit starting at Lancaster University in November. From there the band has gigged extensively at some of the best known music venues through out the UK with an ever growing army of dedicated followers who cram into buses and cars to support the band home and away.

The band have been compared to The Raconteurs, Oasis, Black Keys, The Doors and David Bowie by various music writers and have received favourable reviews, noted especially for intense and engaging live performance.