The idiosyncratic Brian ‘Bordello’ Shea rummages through another month of new and upcoming releases. (Unless stated otherwise, all releases are already available to buy).


Vieira and The Silvers ‘The Judge’
(Catch 21 Records)

There is something very Liverpool about this track; I was sure they would have been from Liverpool as they have the same Scouse pop feel that the Coral and the many bands from the Bandit era have. Maybe they take the same drugs and listen to the same records, either way this track is very good.

It starts off all Captain Beefheart and ends with the kind of Gospel inflections that Booby Gillespie would sell his favourite battered egg to have included on the much over-rated Screamadelica album; a good album, but not all as it is made up to be, unlike this single, which is pretty spiffing and yes spiffing is indeed pretty, and my word of the day. As is this single is my song of the day.

The Budos Band ‘Frontiers Edge’
(Diamond West Records)

I love this track; a sexy shimmy of spy Bond glamour with a hint of 60s hip swinging jazz in a spaghetti western type of way. The kind of track you want your night out on the town to be like – all glittered mini dresses bouffant hair and neon lights offering temptation and seduction. Yes indeed, just the kind of track to paint your evening. A hip swinging triumph.

Josienne Clarke ‘Anyone But Me’

“Anyone But Me” is a dark and bewitching folk song filled with both a sadness and relief that the affair is over, and I am quite taken with how Josienne sings the line, “how can you love anyone but me”. But that is the magic of song, a few brief seconds can transport one back to the dim and distant past and remember not so happy times. A beautiful song and an excellent video to go with it.

Beach Fossils ‘Dare Me’
(Bayonet) 2nd June 2023

Modern indie radio friendly guitar pop normally bores the pants off me: it does. I normally end up taking off my pants and wandering around the house with my them on my head, pulled over my ears whilst wondering how long the kettle is going to take to boil and what would come first: the boiling kettle or the end of the soulless dirge that someone has sent for me to review? Or the soulless dirge that BBC 6 music is forcing upon their daytime listeners, who I think have probably given up on life. But saying that, for some strange reason this song by Beach Fossil does not have that effect on me, even though it has all the lack of qualities that modern produced indie guitar pop has; the soulless production and the spray on radio BBC6 music sheen. But for some reason I like this. Why? Answers on a postcard.

bigflower ‘The Event’

The event by name, an Event by nature, we have a fine slab of mellow dance solitude that is both funky and slinky and electronic-like. And at just over three minutes long is far too short for its own good; double it and you have an ideal floor filler: yes, a floor filled with fine Manchester musicality. This could and should be a 12”, and reminds me a touch of Fatima Mansions in its dark outer grooves. How many times do I need to say, come on record labels sign this man up.


Tony Valentino ‘Dirty Water Revisited’
(Big Stir Records) 26th May 2023

Tony Valentino was of course the lead vocalist with the 60s garage punk legends The Standells, and this, the Dirty Water Revisited album, is where he revisits his past with an album of reworkings of some the band’s classics, and some new songs too. And the reworkings of the classics are fun as all 60s garage songs should indeed be. “Good Guys Don’t Always Wear White” was always one of my fave garage rock songs and this version does not really take anything away from the original, as does none of the reworkings. And lets be honest, garage rock bands have been including these classics in their sets for years so why should Tony not revisit and pay respect to his own past. On the whole he has made an enjoyable romp of 60s garage punk/pop reworkings. And with last years new song single, “I’m A Sexy Punk Rocker”, included reminding us all where Iggy might have got some of his pop from.

Armstrong ‘Summer Is Here EP’

Summer is on its way, so what better way to celebrate than to listen to this 4-track beauty of pop overthrow; a quartet of summer breeze pop; an EP of pure jangle and sci-fi synths; a 4-track treasure of shadows of yesterday’s delights. But what else can one expect when it is the latest release from Armstrong, everybody’s favourite pop picker songs that has one thinking back to when Aztec Camera and Prefab Sprout would occasionally sneak into the top 40 and the internet was only something Leeds Utd supporters used to shout at three o clock on a Saturday afternoon. Sublime pop indeed and Summer Is Here is so summer sounding it has brought on my hay fever.

Cat Box Room Bois ‘Tinder Vittles’
(Metal Postcard Records)

Ah the lovely subtleties of American shambolic rock ‘n’ roll spews forth from this magical album featuring a member from the genius Legless Crabs. So it being shambolic rock ‘n’ roll is indeed nothing to be surprised at. And indeed, it is pure undiluted rock ‘n’ roll, with traces of the DNA of The Modern Lovers, Neil Young, The Marychain, the Velvet Underground and The Stooges in a loose and casual way that gives casual a new looseness.

It is the sound of a party in your pants. It is raunchy. It is sexy. It is funny. It actually sounds like a band rehearsing in your neighbour’s shed whilst the singer juggles extravagances in a cartoon denim and leather clad clown like way. Whilst the guitarist shows off his fretboard prowess imagining he was once a member of Red-Hot Chilli Peppers but was thrown out for being good and having lo-fi punk attitude. So if Lo-fi rock ‘n’ roll is your thing and you want an album that sounds like one of the most out of it bands from your neighbourhood jamming wildly on a summers day with the essence of weed and alcohol slowly drifting  on a gentle summer breeze, or, The Beach Boys Party album but made by drug addled stoners brought up on a soundtrack of 70s Fm Rock and early 80s American punk , this album is for you. This a gem of an album.


Dominic Valvona

Cult B-movie European soundtracks, spine-tingling schlock and spooked, chain-rattling horror fuzztones aplenty. Yes, its that time of the year again, the bewitching hour is nigh, and so another one of Dominic Valvona’s special Halloween playlists.

To accompany any freaks ball, ghoulish themed soiree, candelabra lit dinner party, macabre shindig and black mass, the perfect soundtrack of devilish nonsense. Includes the bell tolled meaning doom of Acanthus, the kool aid hell-trippers St. John Green, the rebel county seedy James Gang, horrorcore rap doyens The Gravediggaz, the despairing Gothic romantics Vukovar, bewitched folk troupe Sproatly Smith and many more.

Previous ghastly selections:

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