Author Archives: Laurence Todd

Took early retirement after many years as a teacher in order to write books as well as about music. A long-time music obsessive, has wide and eclectic tastes but particularly likes prog rock and rock in general. Enjoys going to gigs and discovering new acts.
Rebecca Downes

Rebecca Downes – More Sinner than Saint  

Following on from her last album, 2016’s Believe, Rebecca Downes has released the follow-up, putting it out on her own label, Mad Hat Records. The title track ‘Believe’ won the accolade of Song of the Year at the 2016 British Blues Awards, so she’s set her own bar high for the follow-up. Rebecca Downes is an artist said to be a ...

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MYRATH - Shehili

North African band MYRATH play powerful rock on new album Shehili    

In case you were unaware, there is such a thing as North African hard rock. Myrath (pronounced Meer-rath) are a band from Tunisia, a nation not exactly overflowing with well-known rock bands, and they’ve gone some way towards blending the sounds of their nation with the kerrang of heavy metal and hard rock. Over the time they’ve been playing together, ...

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 ANTENNA - The Gift

The Gift continue to evolve on Antenna

Following on from 2016’s Why The Sea Is Salt, The Gift have now released their much-anticipated follow-up, Antenna. Three years in the making, it’s an album which probably won’t count as the band’s most ambitious work, but it’s one which sees The Gift moving away from playing the lengthier, more complex pieces they’ve become known for (no song here is ...

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Hank Marvin strikes ‘Gold’ in this new collection

The UK has consistently punched above its weight when it comes to producing the world’s stellar rock guitarists down the years, with many of them going on to sustain long, illustrious and influential careers. Few of these players, though, can truly be described as having been seminal, in the sense they’ve inspired a whole generation to want to learn how ...

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CJ Ramone proves punk’s not dead with ‘The Holy Spell’         

If the Rolling Stones are the greatest rock ‘n roll in the world, then Ramones have a more than viable claim to be the greatest punk rock band in the world. And while arguments will forever rage over which band were the first real punk band, there can be little doubt, circa 1977 -Ramones were the most influential, certainly here ...

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Why Keith Richards’ solo album ‘Talk Is Cheap’ is still a classic 30 years on

There’s an interesting story about the gestation period of this album. Talk Is Cheap was put together by Keith Richards and his side band, the X-Pensive Winos, during 1987-88 while the Stones were off the road. In fact, they’d been off the road for several years by this time and hadn’t toured since 1982 because Jagger believed he could do ...

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Salem’s Bend explore fuzzy sounds on ‘Supercluster’

“Three dudes crawled into a garage-turned-studio and dug out some tracks from the nether regions of Sabbath, Purple, etc, and other 70’s rockers, infused these with other musical elements and slithered out as Salem’s Bend,” which is how the band describe their origins. Supercluster is their second album and, if there’s still some justice in the world, it’s an album ...

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Here Comes The Rain Again

Warmrain… Here Comes The Rain Again           

This is a four-track precursor to Warmrain’s debut album, Back Above The Clouds, scheduled for June release and, if it’s anything as good as this EP, I’m definitely interested in hearing it.  This is an EP likely to appeal to anyone who enjoys the kind of music performed by John Mitchell and Steven Wilson and other similar artists, indeed anyone whose ...

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John Lodge

Moody Blues bassman John Lodge brought his 10,000 Light Years band to London for a rare solo gig

In the almost baronial splendour of Cadogan Hall, Sloane Square, Moody Blues bassman John Lodge brought his 10,000 Light Years band to London for a rare solo gig in the capital. The Moodies have always been a class act so it was only fitting he chose to perform with his band in similar surroundings. He’d already done a short solo ...

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The Far Meadow - Foreign Land

The Far Meadow’s Foreign Land

The Far Meadow are a symphonic, prog rock band from London who emerged from Blind Panic, and who’ve just released their third album, Foreign Land, the follow-up to 2016’s Given the Impossible, which was this writers introduction to the band. Actually, the real introduction was seeing them open up the Saturday afternoons proceedings at the 2018 New Day Festival where, ...

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