Classic Album Review: The Maccabees -‘Colour It In’



As The Macabees have just released their critically acclaimed fourth album ‘Marks to Prove it’, it would be interesting to take a step back and look at where they started by zoning in on their colourful debut album ‘ Colour It On’.

When the album came out the indie music scene was in a a relatively dire state, with only Arctic Monkeys only really flying the flag, do not even mention Razorlight. They had one song. So when The Maccabees graced us with this album it was like breath of fresh air after a year working in a dust ridden warehouse.

The album had a number of high points throughout, and never lets you down with any song. You can nit pick all you like but, you’ll struggle to find a fault.  As the album opener ‘Good old Bill’ settles you in , ‘X-Ray’ hits you and you weren’t ready for it. The frantic pace of the song is good enough, but combined with the aggressive riff the song completely blows it out the water.

‘All In Your Rows’ , ‘Latchmere’ and ‘About Your Dress’ provide you with with those moments of the crowd unifying and screaming the words straight back at the band. Not all songs have to be intricate and mind boggling and, these songs prove it as none of them are particularly doused with guitar trickery,but they have the vital component which is getting you hooked.

The highlight of the album could be several songs, but for in this particular instance it’s ‘First Love’ as it takes you from the depths of subtle guitar playing to a complete riot. The Maccabees have this particular skill in abundance, and the frightening fact is that they had it from the get go.

Each classic album has that slow song, which everyone attempts to learn on guitar and sing to themselves about a girl, ‘Toothpaste Kisses’ is that song. Its completely stripped back to an almost lo-if recording with the vocals and guitar sounding underproduced, giving it that honest feeling, which surround ps the album.

This sparked off something that has blossomed into one of the UK’s most underrated bands, but the people who appreciate and understand The Maccabees, will hold them dear forever.

Words by Alex Wise @al4563



Arcade Parade – Cave of Swimmers EP

Arcade Parade

Band: Arcade Parade

Hometown: Shropshire

Influences: The Maccabees, Foals, Bombay Bicycle Club

Arcade Parade is the new fresh faced young ‘Indie’ band from Shropshire. With gigs at The 02 Academy3, Birmingham Ballrooms and The Slade Rooms already under their belt, the band is definitely set for great things…

On first listen, the EP: ‘Cave Of Swimmers’ introduces catchy melodies, pounding bass lines, innovative guitar riffs and rather impressive husky vocals; a wonderful blend of talent from the young quartet.

Grace, the first track on the EP opens on a strangely infectious drumbeat, a beat that causes the head to bob and the foot to tap. After the minute and a half introduction the roaring and grisly vocals step in; Kelly Jones instantly appears in my mind. The sound is so mature you almost forget you’re listening to four teenage boys.

Cave of Swimmers is the second track on the EP that immediately explodes into a memorable guitar hook and a mash up of drumbeats. The almost chaotic opening and alternative nature of the beats makes you immediately listen up. I can’t help but lean towards that Stereophonics ‘anthem’ type vibe yet again, with a bit of the Arctic Monkeys thrown in for good measure.

Eyes Open is the third song on the EP Cave of Swimmers. Eyes Open unveils itself as a lot more raw than the other two songs, that ‘in a tin can’ kind of jumbled sound is definitely a positive. The rhythmic fires of electric guitar continue throughout, never allowing the song to soften and fiercely overlapping the vocals.

Finally there’s the fourth track, Out Of The Picture. The mystifying opening is very different than the other 3 tracks on the EP and definitely sends that ‘alien invasion’ shiver over your body… once that steady yet catchy beat kicks in again we realise where we are. The euphoric sound is ensnaring in Out Of The Picture as the lead singer sings with such conviction, “I just can’t let you in”.

The passion, catchiness and tightness of the band is so apparent, especially as the EP progresses. All of the ingredients are there; it’s just up to Arcade Parade to separate themselves from the rest of the ‘indie’ bands. They’ve definitely got the goods, they’ve just got to use it right.

Words by Amy Morrison





Shoot The Rabbit – Scribble EP


Band: Shoot The Rabbit


Boys in the band: David Bullough – Lead Guitar & Vocals , Rhodri Davies – Drums, Matt Norton – Bass, Adam Taylor – Rhythm Guitar

Sounds Like: Arctic Monkeys, The Maccabees

‘Scribble’ EP

Shoot the Rabbits intentions are clear throughout the EP, which is to create enticing, catchy and beautiful good old fashioned indie music, and they demonstrate this perfectly in the EP. Some bands now class themselves as indie, and when you’re listening to you feel led astray because it’s not really indie, it’s just some alternative nonsense, this won’t happen with STR as they deliver what they said they would.


From start to finish we’re gifted with fun and intrinsic riffs, which sound like something you’d hear off an early Maccabee’s album or perhaps an early Arctic Monkeys album. The first track ‘Scribble’ is what is described as indie music, pacey, catchy, seductive vocals and marginally lo-fi. The substance of the track lies with the lyrics as they prove to be clever and witty, something that Mr.Turner himself would perhaps write. It’s a bright and lively opening to the EP, which runs into the next song ‘No bugs or flies around me’.

Once again this features a toe-tapping riff that could linger around your head for days, this isn’t helped either by how jumpy it is in parts. This track easily paints a picture of how it would be received live, with people jumping from wall to wall as they try to keep up with the singing and the pace of the song, which is something that rarely ends well. It’s somewhat reminiscent of the first Arctic Monkeys album, because the song could’ve snuck itself onto the track list without anyone realising. The final track ‘Best Keep Quiet’ take as slight turn down to XX avenue, with the intro and the riff inherently reminding me of their distinct style. Although they seem to take a different root for this song, they seem to pull it off. However, the breakdown part is a bit scrappy and runs on for a bit too long, but we are rewarded after that long breakdown with a huge ending that would go down so well live.

To get the full brash effect of this EP, your speakers need to be relatively loud so you can appreciate every element in there. After listening to the EP, I will be keeping my eyes wide open, looking out for a pair of STR tickets round my area.