Category Archives: Pop

THEATRE ROYAL: ‘Incidental Friend.’

It’s not very often that a band appears on the music scene, one hundred per cent ‘ready.’

Rochester band Theatre Royal are one .

I have been banging about them from virtually day one, and now, ahead of their fifth album release, due early next year, they have confirmed my faith with their excellent new ‘Incidental Friend‘ EP.

The four tracks will be drip-released over the next three weeks, with the title track available from today (1st November.)

Theatre Royal have never really strayed from what they do best – clear, melodic harmonies with hooky choruses and thoughtful lyrics. Their songs have the knack of immediacy, without being in your face, as such. And ‘Incidental Friend’ is no different in that regard.

Although I have said they arrived ‘one hundred percent ready,’ there has always been a natural progression, and this track shows a further maturity. It somehow feel just a little bit more polished; a little bit more relaxed in the delivery – like this is a band who appreciate their strengths and know where they want to sit in whole scheme of things. A band confident in their skin.

Look – it’s not just me. If blokes like Steve Lamaq dig them, then I need say no more.

Go check ’em out.



BANDAID BRIGADE: ‘Break The Grid.’

It’s never been enough for me, a band just producing excellent music; there needs to be more for them to make it onto my ‘favourites’ list.

In the case of Bandaid Brigade, the first criteria is easily fulfilled. Just listen to their latest offering, ‘Break the Grid,’ and their debut track, ‘Travel Light,’ (both below.)

But why are they my new favourite band?
Their debut album is not due until the turn of the New Year, and they certainly haven’t played here in Glasgow.

I’ll tell you why – it’s precisely because I can’t put my finger on what they offer! There’s an air of mystery about them, but a real punk attitude, harking back to the fun punk of the early 2000s. The music seems based on punk, but then isn’t what you’d call ‘punk.’

Their music and attitude makes me smile. They make me wanna dance … though you really don’t wanna see that.

Heck! Who cares what label is put on Bandaid Brigade. They have fun – we have fun. Everyone’s a winner.


BANDAID BRIGADE: ‘Travel Light.’

Bandaid Brigade are a new band out of somewhere, USA. The press bio doesn’t say. Not that it matters. But given the band’s instigators are Zach Quinn, of hardcore punk band PEARS fame, and Brian Wahlstrom (ScorpiosGods of Mount Olympus) then I’ll take a punt on New Orleans and California.

The band’s makeup is completed with Paul Rucker (Street Dogs) on drums and Chris Fogal (The Gamits) on guitar.

Now, given the pedigree, you, or at least I, would expect any such collaboration to result in something, well, punk based.

But see, that’s the trouble when writing of bands with connections to the American punk scene of old – and especially any who have had connections to Fat Wreck Records and worked with the likes of Lagwagon. They just didn’t seem to take life too seriously. You could never be sure what to expect next.

And so it is with Bandaid Brigade. With the release of their debut single, ‘Travel Light,’ the band seem determined to laugh in the face of genre convention. See? Even with something serious like releasing the lead track from their forthcoming album, ‘I’m Seperate,‘ they’re still laughing.

Details of the album are scarce at the moment, and given what I’ve written so far, I hesitate to suggest the following video is typical of what to expect.

The humour of the video, yes. Song style? Who knows?

Travel Light’ is about as far removed from the hardcore punk of PEARS as you can get, but you don’t have to listen too hard to pick up on some delightful pop punk vibes mixed in amongst the 80s disco beats.

The video is of course, both fun and excellent. But I listened to the track a few times without the ‘distraction,’ and you know – this song is catchy as f***!

I do tend to think Bandaid Brigade are more making some kind of ironic comment on the state of mid-80s, commercial music than seriously hinting they are headed off in that direction.

But if they are going that way, I think I’ll join them. It could be a right laugh.