New Song: Japandroids

Japandroids have announced the release of their new album Celebration Rock, which will be released on June 4th courtesy of Polyvinyl Record Co. ‘The House That Heaven Built’ is the first taster from the new album, a long awaited follow-up to their critically acclaimed 2009 debut, Post-Nothing, and is delicious slice of dystopian noise-punk-rock. The duo will also tour the UK at the following dates in May, and listen to the new song underneath (and remember to turn those speakers up as loud as they go!).

Henry Rollins @ O2 Academy Oxford – 18/01/12

For those who don’t know, Henry Rollins isn’t just the lead singer of the legendary and highly influential 80?s hardcore band Black Flag. He has also written over 15 books, made 7 solo albums with The Rollins Band, appeared in numerous films and TV shows. Luke Smith saw him reminisce about his past at the O2 Academy Oxford.

Live Preview: Franz Nicolay & Chris T-T

Banjo/accordion wielding troubadour Franz, when not playing accordian for the mighty The Hold Steady or waxing his moustache, is beguiling fans with his somewhat deranged live-show. The New Yorker’s live routine has been described as “witty, melodramatic, poetic, romantic, and sometimes simply bizarre”. Worth a punt? We think so! Playing at The Wheatsheaf tomorrow night, support comes from Chris T-T, Jim Lockey & The Solemn Sun and Alaska. Tickets cost £5/6.

Half Naked – Offers And Refusals

Last time I saw Half Naked, they were the incongruous support for Chicago-based American rock outfit, Fillgar when they came to Oxford to play at The Cellar. Offers And Refusals is the young (fully dressed, at least when I saw them) trio’s latest EP release; a follow up to their solid debut, Falcon Punch EP, reviewed earlier this year. Half Naked have taken a step up and are ready to be heard. Words by Matt Simpkin.

Friendly Fires – Pala

Just as their self-titled 2008 album refused to be pigeon-holed to a particular genre, Pala combines dance, punk, 80s synths, silky smooth melodies and Friendly Fires’ characteristically mental percussive arrangements. It is sure to send festival crowds insane all over this summer a fantastic follow up album, head spinning stuff indeed. Words by Miriam Carter-Fraser.

Times New Viking – Dancer Equired

Dancer Equired sees noisy punks Time New Vikings become slightly less frantic and embrace the Pavement inspired slacker vibe currently popular in American indie-rock. Moving from Matador to Merge, their faintly altered sound sees the band lose a little bit of their previous uniqueness. Words by Tom Jowett.

Half Naked – Falcon Punch EP

What a breath of fresh air! A punk/pop band who are actually making music with a real punk feel. Half Naked are an Oxfordshire 3 piece not afraid to challenge it’s listeners with ambition and scuffed delivery – after all, punk is not about being squeaky clean, it’s about all expression. Words by Dennis Cook.