Weekend Wonders: Mick Clarke - Deltawerk - Andrew Johnston - Slothrust - Wild Domestic

Mick Clarke - Tailgater.

Background -  Two new digital singles from Mick Clarke are now available. Begging Bowl - From the Shake It Up album this  a funkier remix which was done for the 3 CD re-issue, coming soon on BGO Records. Tailgater - Also originally recorded for the Shake It Up album but not included on the final track list - now available as a digital single iTunes etc.

Mick began his career with Killing Floor part of the British blues boom of the late 60s. The band backed Texas blues guitar star Freddie King and toured with legends such as Howlin' Wolf and Otis Spann. In the 70s Mick co-formed Salt, a powerful four piece band which was a big hit on the UK club and college scene, opened for Muddy Waters in London and played at the Reading Festival.

The Mick Clarke Band was formed in the early 80s and Mick has become an established name on the European scene, touring regularly in every country from Finland down to Italy, plus tours in the USA and Asia. Praised for his fiery "straight from the wood" guitar sound, he has appeared on numerous festivals with artists such as Robert Cray, Johnny Winter and Rory Gallagher. The Southern California Blues Society called him "one of the finest blues players to come out of England". Mick is the winner of the 2014 "best international act" from artistaloud.com, India.

The album "Ruff'n'Roar - Live at Scratchers" was released in January 2016, and in February 2017 the full trilogy of Ramdango / Crazy Blues / Shake It Up will be released on a double CD by BGO Records. Website here, Facebook here.

If you like some unpretentious blues rock then 'Tailgater' may well tick all your boxes. Mick Clarke is a blues natural. The music may span generations, but tracks like this for me, mean it never grows old.


Deltawerk - Sample.

Background - Deltawerk is a new collaborative project by Pascal Terstappen (Applescal) & Hessel Stuut (Polynation). The Amsterdam based artists created an audio/visual live set, titled 'Passages', that takes you on a journey through surreal worlds and sounds. Until summer 2017, eight tracks will be released on four different EP’s: Passages EP.1,EP.2, EP.3 & EP.4.

The Deltawerk live performance is projected to three big screens on stage. The side screens are diagonally placed which gives the impression you fly past all kinds of worlds, through passages.

Hessel Stuut is mainly known for his work as Polynation, a music act he's producing together with Stijn Hosman that became #03 'Best New Act' on XLR8R in 2015. He’s also played drums/keys in theater shows, collaborating with musicians from all over the world. Graduated from the University of the Arts (2009) and with a couple of award winning exhibitions under his belt, Hessel is also responsible for lots of Atomnation cover art and visuals for all kinds of commercial purposes.

Pascal Terstappen has been releasing as Applescal for quite a while and is the founding figure of Atomnation, the label responsible for releasing music by Sau Poler, David Douglas, Weval, Gidge, Polynation and Olaf Stuut. With a label nearing 50 releases and an impressive solo discography, Pascal is without doubt one of the most dedicated curators of the electronic music scene. As Deltawerk, Terstappen & Stuut fuse their love for club music and visual art. More here.

Just short of ten minutes the track 'Sample' envelops the listener with spacious melodic synths and a crisp flowing rhythm. The production is superb and despite it's length this has a play it again quality throughout.


Andrew Johnston - Dictator.

Background from Andrew Johnston - When I first started to work on "Dictator" it was much more of an on-the-nose political type song. That’s a really hard thing to pull off well, and Murray really encouraged me to go back to the drawing board with the lyrics and make them more personal and from the heart. 

As it stands now the track may have been inspired by political stuff but seems to be more about how we can all be our own worst critics. I guess it’s about being your own worst enemy, and trying to free yourself from that.

It's an uptempo track that falls within the tradition of songs that manage to pair dark subject matter within the trappings of a catchy song. It was selected from the Murray Lightburn (The Dears) produced sessions for my next record “The New Great Game”. Facebook here.

Live Dates:
Nov 25th – Toronto – The Central
Nov 26th Wakefield – Kafe 1870
Nov 27st – Ottawa – Shanghai Restaurant

Full of gentle alt rock vibes 'Dictator' is a melodic and addictive song. Musicianship is first class and Andrews vocals are equally pleasing. Looking forward to 'The New Great Game'.


Slothrust - Rotten Pumpkin.

Background - Slothrust has debuted the video for their most recent single "Rotten Pumpkin". The video channels Britney Spears, includes circus tricks, choreography, a gold lamè onesie, tracks suits and of course, jazz hands! "Rotten Pumpkin" along with their two previous singles "Like A Child..." and "Horseshoe Crab" are all on their recently released album 'Everyone Else' out now on Dangerbird Records.

With their long-awaited third album Everyone Else, Slothrust deliver ten riveting anthems that reward repeated listens. The songs grab the ear and pierce the psyche with complex arrangements and lyrical depth intensified by guitarist/vocalist Leah Wellbaum’s penetrating vocal delivery. 

Slothrust is Wellbaum, Kyle Bann (bass), and Will Gorin (drums). The trio first staked out their unique strain of jazz- and blues-afflicted rock as students at Sarah Lawrence College. The band’s 2012 debut Feels Your Pain, and its successor 2014’s Of Course You Do, established the band as a breed apart, serving up deceptively clever epics that veer satisfyingly between incandescent riffing and pop hooks, winsome anxiety and powerful heft. Facebook here.

We featured Slothrust back in early October and the new video for their recent single 'Rotten Pumkin' is well worth a feature. Musically the band deliver another ear pleasing rocker, and the video is very 'out there' and likable.


Wild Domestic - Author.

Background - Indie/ alt-rock band, Wild Domestic is the brainchild of Matt Carlson. Born in Paraguay, Carlson moved to Charlotte, North Carolina when he was six months old, and it is where he resides to this day. According to Carlson, he knew from a young age that music was his true calling, and according to his family, he has been singing since before he could talk.

 As a teenager, Carlson began playing an assortment of instruments including guitar, bass, drums and keys, most of which were self-taught. Completely immersed in the arts as a teen, Carlson was involved as an actor in a number of plays and commercials. While attending college, Carlson simultaneously continued his music career. Following stints in several different Charlotte area bands, he made the decision to pursue a solo career and took on the moniker Wild Domestic.

After spending the last few years writing and performing both locally and nationally, Carlson released his self-titled debut EP, Wild Domestic in 2015. The follow up EP, Singular is slated to be released in early 2017. Wild Domestic’s writing, production and performance is a reflection of Carlson’s personal views and voice. His soulful, honest, and sometimes quirky lyrics are underscored by his strong alternative rock background, which is influenced by bands like My Chemical Romance, Fall Out Boy, Talking Heads and Arcade Fire. Wild Domestic connects in a fresh way with a broad and progressive audience. Facebook here.

'Author' is a fresh feeling, alt rocker. Matt Carlson's vocals fit the bill and are immersed in good old full tilt rock'n'roll guitar lead music. It's a punchy honest song and it works.