The Automatic return with their 2nd album, This is a Fix, the follow up to their debut album, Not Accepted Anywhere. The Welsh rockers have seen a change in their lineup after Alex Pennie left due to band differences, with Paul Mullen, who was previously in the band yourcodenameis:milo, being brought in as his replacement. I think this will prove to be a positive move, with Pennie’s irritating screaming on backing vocals on the first album not fitting in with the music of the band.

“Monster” was the stand out hit from the debut album, and ultimately was a large part of the records success, with the rest of the album struggling to meet expectation. But This is a Fix is an improvement. The opening track, “Responsible Citizen”, certainly shows a level of maturity from the first album. It’s not as in your face and without the aggressive influence of Pennie, it seems the band have mellowed and this is allowing them to create better music. It’s not a ground breaking first track but I’m definitely intrigued to hear more. Read more

After the huge success of their self-titled debut album, Elliot Minor will release single number five from their first record on June 23rd. Four smash hit singles have already seen the band become one of the breakthrough acts of 2008, with fans singing along to top tracks such as “Parallel Worlds” and “Still Figuring Out”.

Whenever bands do release a fifth single from just one record it’s never anticipated to do that well, one because it wasn’t considered good enough to be launched earlier, and secondly because many fans have already bought the album by the time a fifth single comes out. Well, “Time After Time” may buck the trend; in fact, I’d be surprised if it didn’t. Read more

Leona Ness - Heavy Like SundayShe shares her first name with one of the biggest names in music right now, and Leona Naess certainly doesn’t do her namesake any disservice with her new single “Heavy like Sunday”.

One thing for sure, Naess’ genre is a bit different to Leona Lewis’, but she has just as much talent. This track has similarities to some of Katie Melua’s work, with a chilled out, relaxing vibe.

But “Heavy like Sunday” is unique as it feels more intimate than other work by similar artists, such as Melua. The instruments are used as more of a soft backing track, rather than being used to jazz up a track which is what we see a lot these days. It does make the song feel more intimate, and as Naess is a singer-songwriter, you can understand the thought she has put in to the lyrics. The simple guitar riffs and soft percussion allow her outstanding voice to come to the fore, which works really well in this track. Read more

The ExitsRecently signed to Criminal Records, The Exits are a four-piece electronic indie band from Portsmouth who like to rock, well that’s the easiest way I can describe them.

Their latest record, ‘Neon City’, is a small four-track look into their talents, and believe me after hearing this you’ll be wishing there was more to listen to on this CD.

The opening track of the CD, the self-titled ‘Neon City’, does not disappoint. In fact, it’s the best song of the four. The electronic riff to open this song immediately made me think of Kasabian, and as soon as lead vocalist Ray Charlton uttered the words “Neon City”, comparisons with US rockers The Bravery sprung to mind. If you like The Bravery, you’ll definitely love this band. The track is very upbeat and I can see people dancing to it as well as singing along. This song could certainly be a hit, and it wouldn’t surprise me if ‘Neon City’ becomes a bit of an anthem this summer. Read more