The NBT Review 2


Jaik Miller Band   Jaik Miller Band (Truth Movement)

 Something about this release makes me think of vinyl, American new wave mixed with the grit and glory of a country rock free at last from the self-pity and the tears. This new recording recalls the ghosts of the first two Tom Petty releases and almost famous and always cool artists like John Hiatt and Graeme Parker.

There is a timeless and easy grin feel to this, no airbrushing the anger and the heartbreak, but… that grin, that energy, never falters.

4447 is pure single, a song the listener knows and loves from the first rolling verse, sliding easily into the air and waiting for national fame when the band (WILL) eventually play Austin City Limits. (not being of the US of A, i have no idea if that show is still going but oh i hope so).

That is not to say there is no darkness on the edge of Miller’s town, many of the tunes come weary from the fight (Furthermore) and ready to brawl ( Social Disease) and in ‘After Last Call’ you can feel the heaviness of the night and the stories of the bar as clearly as any Waits ballad.

There are no clever, ‘oh look at me’, twirls in this, but every instrument including Jaik Miller’s spine tingling vocals recall the very best of Vic Chesnutt and the subtle playing of the DBs.


Colour Cold – Safe From Silence (Independent Release)

 Thousands of bands, from all over the world, attempt this style, knowing that if they succeed, their music will be the soundtrack to countless first loves, college adventures and the thrill of discovery within that forever time before the nine to five takes over.

So every time a new band comes up and starts to reveal their creation, it gets harder and harder to notice them amongst the many.

Colour Cold a band from Bloemfontein a small city in the heart of South Africa, not only manage to catch the listener’s attention, but with skill and subtle artistry capture their hearts as well.

Listening to the songs, being caught up in the lyrics, I became aware just how much depth and strength there is on display here. The band is not scared to tackle the darkness and the insecurities of those around them, but never fall into the trap of easy over dramatics that seduce too many bands.

With a production that is crystal clear and shouts and struts when needed, and shines but never dominates and a skill with melody and emotion, this band manages to be both commercial (the song ‘then let live ‘ DEMANDS to be  a number one hit everywhere it is played) and sincere.

This is no facebook/myspace/mtv manufactured band slinging out major company gloss, this is a band that will last and last.

 Plasmabat – Twilight Music (Independent Release)

 The opening music evokes images of a sun-filled afternoon speeding towards night. The thrill of the heat on our bodies, and the knowledge that this will not last forever. It is the perfect opening to a creation called ‘Twilight Music’

Minimal instrumentation by Hugh Caley gives the imagination time to dream and wander about in the spaces in the sounds, seemingly stopping time and making the experience of listening to this for the first (and indeed the 12th, 200th) time, extremely rewarding.

On standout track ‘familiar shadows’ the term ‘Frippertonics’ is used in the press release and while the ghosts of both Robert Fripp and Brian Eno recordings certainly reside here, the mood has an essence and a soul all of its own.

What makes this album stand out is a sense of tension perhaps even fear lying not quite so hidden under the calm 

You will be able to hear all these artists on the NBT podcast

Going out on the 19th march

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