Shantelle Records ★★★★
A bunch of very accomplished musicians who do not give a toss about trends or being the next big thing Now here’s a different and unexpected sound from ‘Welsh hillbillies’ The Bleedin
Noses. A name you’d maybe expect for a punk band in the 70s perhaps, which is apt because they have the same levels of power, attitude and energy of those safety pin wearing, spiky haired yoofs of that time.
But this lot don’t spit as far as I know, they throw out a unique sound which they call ‘dirty country’, ‘vicious skiffle’and ‘hillbilly country punk’, mixing genres galore; country, bluegrass, folk, r&b and skiffle with an aggression and a chutzpah that demands we listen.
An attention holding vocal from front man Oliver ‘Olllie’ Ashton, who also plays banjo and guitar here. An impressively varied collection of songs that will do them a lot of good once this record is out there.
A six piece band made up of Ollie, Paul ‘Spook’ Julian on guitar, Darren Lewis on drums, Lenny Molyneux on bass, Kevin Meyrickon lead guitar, mandolin and harp, Louie Williams on keyboards and all six of the guys on harmony vocals.
With a great big sound that take us from the punk rock energy of the opener Win to the Pogues-ish Weeping Eye, and onward to the MumfordsBellowheadLevellers’ territory ho-down of Skin & Bone.
It’s got that retro Dr FeelgoodEddie and the Hot RodsThe MotorsDave Edmunds Rockpile pub rock- punkthing from the 70s, with a modern twist and sound; countryAmericanaroots values chucked into the dutchie for good measure. Think Hank Williams on an acid trip!
There are many layers to this record, and it’s gonna take a few listens to catch on that here is a bunch of very accomplished musicians who do not give a toss about trends or being the next big thing. They care just about their labour of love, an album set to be one of the strongest new releases of the coming year. One of the most unusual, for sure.
They throw in banjo, mandolin, double bass, drums, electric guitar, electric bass, keyboards, piano-accordion, harmonic and joyous rich vocal harmonies across this very live sounding album of 11 songs all penned by the band, who also produced. Together for four years now, they have gigged at venues and festival around the UK including Glastonbury, Greenman and The Larmer Tree festival.
An album that sounds like one there’s one hell of a party goin’ on in them there Welsh hills. The band certainly don’t hold back in performance, butthere’s no clue from the look of the plain white cover with
typed band name bottom right corner, of just what to expect. No fancy, schmanzy photos or artwork. Maybe their mantra is; judge us from the music not the packaging and what we look like.
It will fit snugly into the Americana section of a record store (or what’s left of them,) just at home in the roots or folk section too. There’s a simmering anger and angst, but also humour and a spirit. Yeah, that’s what I get most of all, a real spirit and deep Joie de vivre seeping out of this delightful disc. Bloody marvellous (see what I did there?) Simon Redley www.thebleedinnoses.com