Carbon County – When I Fly
Genre: 90s Rock, Psychedelic Rock, Alternative Rock
Rock stars are supposed to play up to the need for mystery and build their own myth. Guitarists like Jimmy Page or Bernard Butler were compared to Lord Byron. They were, supposedly, mad, bad, and dangerous to know. They were into magic, weird sex fetishes, and could pick off great riffs straight out from the sky.
Try bands as they may to make music as ambiguous as possible, most of us who grew up asking our parents for an electric guitar really had one or two ambitions. The first was to learn to play Black Sabbath riffs. The second, perhaps, was to get some of these tunes on the radio, earn a few bob and pretend to be rock stars.
Carbon County’s When I Fly is an unashamed mixture of both those things. There’s a certain sound going around and still landing guitar bands a spot on the radio. It’s blues-pop-rap and it deserves to be perverted. Just like Carbon County do here. It’s over the top hard-rock taken into a brave, new direction.
HOXSEY – Bath Salts
Genre: Grunge, Alternative Rock
In South Korea, the world capital of shiny pop music, producers take on would-be stars at a very young age and train them for their life in front of an audience as if they were training them for the Olympics. It’s hard work that requires discipline and diligent practice. Now, you can’t quite argue with results.
When it comes to the twisted, weird worlds of rock a similar preparation that lasts for years is needed, but the ingredients are altogether very different. Take the Pixies, for example. In their heyday, they were the favourite band of many other musicians but never achieved great commercial success. Their tremendous, distinctive work was born out of years of obsessions with religion, sex, violence, and Buddy Holly, that invaded the imagination of the very talented Frank Black.
The Pixies may have infected pop music from within forever. No, they didn’t exactly sell out stadiums, but from Nirvana to, now, HOXSEY they influence others. HOXSEY adopt, primarily, the twisted visions of Black delivered in a childlike vocal tone over steaming guitars that go from a murmur to an earthquake. It takes the ability to take some sharp turns with ease to write this kind of music. This U.S. group has that down to an art.