This is the problem when two music journalists who write for the same webzine set up home together. All of a sudden, what was once your own personal CD collection becomes a shared one. The up side of this – you discover some cracking new music via your nicer half. The downside, especially if your musical tastes were fairly similar to begin with, when it comes to doing an end of year “Best of” chart, you suddenly realise there’s quite a lot of similarities there. For our Top 10 albums, this wasn’t a problem – yes, there was some overlap but generally the two charts were different enough to be distinguishable from each other.
No such luck with our Top 5 EP’s chart though – when we compared notes, the two were practically identical. So, after much consideration, we decided to submit a joint list between us – well, kind of anyway.
5= Los Pepes – “Los Pepes”
5= Sorry & The Sinatras- “The Kings Of Shambles Street”
Okay, we know this is cheating slightly but the truth is we had to axe one of these from our list and couldn’t decide. Ironically enough, these are two bands at the very opposite ends of their career paths – Los Pepes saw former Winnebago Deal frontman Ben Perrier rise from the ashes of his former band in style with six tracks of super-tight garage rock while “The Kings Of Shambles Street” was a quality effort from beyond the musical grave from the Sinatras which rammed home what a much-missed band they were.
The return of everyone’s favourite pink punk princess Kiria proved to be a shot in from left field as she roared back into the musical picture with a storming three-track rockabilly EP, making crossing musical genres looking as easy as falling off a log. A tempting taster for the forthcoming Viva Le Pink debut album in 2013.
3 The Damien Cullen Band – “Paved With Good Intentions”
Four tracks which reminded you just how great good old fashioned scuzzy rock ‘n’ roll in the Ramones/Dead Boys mould can be when it’s done right. Helsinki based British ex-pat Mr Cullen and his band are touring over here in March and if this EP is anything to go by, it should be well worth your while going along to see ‘em.
2 Electric River – “In Your Name”
In which the Kent ska-punks moved their sound forward into all sorts of exciting new directions. Songs like “Happy” and the excellent “Hold Your Nerve” have attitude in buckets and killer riffs and choruses to match. If the world sits up and takes notice the way it should then this band are going to be massive in 2013. You heard it here first.
1 Jonny Cola and the A Grades – “Halo”
Four tracks, all killer no filler, pretty much what we’ve come to expect from Mr Cola and his crew in recent years to be honest. From the pure pop delights of the title track to the punky fury of “Rain Stopped Play”, the epic hypnotising “Ripples” and a well-chosen cover of Erasure’s “Ship Of Fools”, this is a group who keep getting better and better with every release.