Filthy Boy

filthy boy, stolen from their myspace page. by DJW

When a band with the name Filthy Boy adds you as a friend on Myspace, you feel compelled to  check them out.

Filthy Boy, hailing from Mother England, are, according to to their brief bio on their Myspace page, a very young band. Aged between 16 and 17.

They don’t sound it.

With a voice that’s part Nick Cave, part Ian Curtis, with a little tinge of our old friend, Mr Tom Waits, singer Paraic Morrissey definitely commands attention and gives the aura of a man who’s lived life long and hard and still around to tell you all about it.

Their sound is part Nick Cave, and that slight tongue-in-cheek taste of The Magnetic Fields. They are definitely British, a throw back to the late 60s and early 70s, with a nice touch of grunge and a splash of almost (dare one say it?) honky-tonk thrown in for good measure. Like you’ve been transported to Texas in the midst of a kitschy Vampire film of yore.

While there are only three songs on their page, their music is strong and very listenable. So why not click on the link and give them a listen?

The Neil Diamond Seal of Approval? 3.65 stars out of 5.

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Pauline Kyllonen

picture from her websiteBy DJW

I came across Pauline Kyllonen via Twitter. She sent me a link to her website and I checked it out.

I’m pleased I did.

Although there’s only four songs on her website, they’re a nice showcase of her talent. This Canadian singer/songwriter clearly has roots in country music. It’s that clear, simple weaving of story, melody and a voice that can communicate the emotional undercurrent of the situation being outlined in the song.

When listening to the music, I could see myself in a bar somewhere in the middle of nowhere, having wandered in in the middle of the day for a cold beer and stumbling across Pauline singing on a bare-bones stage.

Her voice is strong and clear, reminding me of Australian singer, Deborah Conway. A strong woman who won’t take any crap, but one who’s been through a lot, seen many things in her life and is willing to share.

The melancholy sounds bring Chris Isaak to mind, and they are the kind of tunes to listen to when sipping a cold beer or glass of white wine, most certainly on a balcony somewhere, alone, to immerse yourself in the images and emotions her songs conjure up.

I don’t know if Pauline Kyllonen is ever heading to NYC for a gig, but if she is, I’ll be there to check her out. If you’re in Canada and happen to be where she’s playing, you should check her out…

The Neil Diamond Seal of Approval? 3 out of 5 stars.

Introducing The Nightrats (Night Rats)

the night rat's very own art, pilfered right from their myspace page

the night rat's very own art, pilfered right from their myspace page

by DJW

Of course, I’m meant to be doing something else, so naturally I’m trawling the internets for things to do instead.

I stumbled across The Nightrats (Night Rats).

With only a handful of songs on offering on their page, I found myself instantly liking them. Their music is the kind of laidback, quirky, catchy, deceptively simple instacool that other bands would kill for (and, come to think of it, probably do. Can someone look into suspicious band deaths?)

I feel they really have their own vibe going on, and for some reason I think of Paris in the 40s, 50s, 60s, and I feel the urge to be in a hole-in-the-wall place thick with smoke and the crowd of those in the know before anyone else of what is the It Thing. Actually, they also want to make me wear a beret whilst smoking a cigarette in a cigarette-holder and foraying into beatnik poetry. But that’s probably just me and my issues.

The point is they have a great sound. I’m on my third round of listening to their musical groove and the velvet vocals really do bring an intimate and pared back vibe that keeps giving on each listen.

For me, personally, I am reminded of a pinch of Nouvelle Vague, a smidgeon of Mr. Dylan, a teaspoon of Leonard Cohen and of course, their own sound.

This is the kind of band that will make you all smug when the other peons finally discover them. My two favourite songs from their page? “Alligator Man” and “See You When I’m Stronger”.

Plus, anyone who writes the lyrics “I dreamed of velvet Elvis ” most definitely gets my vote. And, Mr. Neil’s!

Go to myspace and check ’em out. And go see them play.

Neil Diamond Seal of Approval? 4.5 out of 5 stars.

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