Well, summer is finally here and I don’t know about you but for me that means lots of Beach Boys, Ramones and classic 60s Reggae/Ska/Rocksteady on the stereo. Now, like I stated in my review of Unitone HiFi/Jefferson Belt‘s split 7″ (read it here) I am fully aware that it’s a bit snobbish attitude but my main problem with modern reggae is the production. It’s just too clean-sounding and lack the grit and sheer oomph of let’s say Lloyd Charmers‘ outings. French group The Rockin’ Preachers might still sound a bit too polished but they thankfully avoid the modern dancehall sounds and sure have the vibe and songwriting down!

Four songs of upbeat, midtempo summer-esque reggae/ska vibes are served up on their debut (?) EP (the last one an instrumental version) – my favorite being Give Me Some Light. Great, great musicianship and some really good vocal delivery from the lead singer and his back-ups (sorry, no names as their site is low on info and no linked website) proving me once again wrong. Enjoy yourself (it’s later than you think)!

Sample track: 

Website: N/A


January 3, 2012

Wow, wanna talk about instantly falling in love with a band? Orange County outfit Suedehead is made up various scenesters from bands including TSOL, Aggrolites and Beat Union and offers up a great blend of 60’s mod, soul and ska with a delivery that brings to mind early Elvis Costello. The band started out in late 2010, earning an opening slot for Social Distortion early on and is currently creating much deserved waves with their music.

Three EP’s has been released so far – both digitally and on vinyl – all showcasing brilliant songwriting, great musicianship and with a perfect production giving them a slight punk “edge”. It was damn near impossible choosing just one sample track – I Believe in Love is taken from their most recent The Constant EP released in October – so take your time checking out everything with these guys!

Sample track:

Bandcamp: http://suedehead.bandcamp.com/
Website: http://www.suedeheadband.com/

Rocksteady Breakfast

December 17, 2011

Minneapolis outfit Rocksteady Breakfast offers up a nice blend of punk/SoCal hardcore and UK-flavored rocksteady on their self-titled debut released earlier this year. Nice snotty vocals alternating between English and Spanish covering pretty classic themes, nice horn section with some neat organ noodlings, and even though they’re not breaking new ground musically it’s still catchy with nice hooks, the occasional sing-along chorus and a healthy dose of Punk Rock sloppiness.

Fans of Rancid, The Specials or Operation Ivy should definitely check this out, and it’s a free download, so what ya got to lose?

Sample track:

Bandcamp: http://rocksteadybreakfast.bandcamp.com/
Website: N/A