FRIENDS OF LUCA BRASI CD single – DOVES c/w FELL APART on Big Right Hand Records

Written by Matteo Sedazzari
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I like the Friends of Luca Brasi... it would be fair to say I like them a lot; so much so that after catching them live and kicking at a crowded out 12 Bar Club in Denmark Street one Friday night a while ago (I actually reviewed that gig for ZANI - go to:

I asked them to act as band in residence at the ZANI ‘Diogenes Club’ nights I stage downstairs at the Spice Of Life in Soho... it was an easy choice, cos not only do these fellas pull in a good, lively crowd, they also invest maximum energy and 100% committment to every show, always delivering a powerful and passionate performance that gets both their existing and new fans, younger and older, jumping about, some even having an old school pogo! And right now FOLB have finally released their debut single - a long awaited, corking little record which pretty much captures their punk fuelled sixties garage sound perfectly.

FRIENDS OF LUCA BRASI CD single coverThe band hail from the East End of London and Essex with Adam Bishop on vocals, Tim Mardell and Dave Powell on guitars, Kevin Barry on bass, and Paul McEvoy on drums. FOLB have been gigging for a few years now, gradually gaining a loyal live following, a strong and noisy fan base spanning two generations who dig their resolutely old school, punk DIY attitude glossed over with a sharp Mod sensibilitiy. Their sound is edgy yet jubilant, distorted yet melodic... which some would argue is the very essence of new wave and 79 Mod revival music, yet they are certainly NOT just a Mod revival band... they simply have an overriding passion for classic 60s beat / garage / mod-rock and good old sleazy ‘77 punk and new wave, both British and American - they’ve just mixed it all up, stirred it all up and given it a glorious and thorough shaking up.

There are two tracks on their first release; ‘Doves’ and ‘Fell Apart’, both recorded close to home ground at One Louder Studios in Hackney with Adam Ant’s current producer Alan Emptage twiddling the dials, and the band say more releases are planned for 2015, with the next single already recorded and in the can... they are also booked in this Spring to record 2 new tracks. I'm told an EP or maybe a mini album is in the offing… watch this space.

As it is, ‘Doves’ is a down and dirty, catchy little number, more infectious than herpes. Imagine The Clash and The Who having a punch up in a backstreet Northern Soul club... cheeky and aggressive with a classic power chord opening, Bishop’s vocals quickly dropping in, majestic and engaging, whilst solid bass and drums provide this gritty track with the strongest of insistent back bones. Immediate and bang on the money and, just like the classic singles of yesterday its a proper ear-worm, you suddenly find yourself nodding and singing along within 30 seconds of listening. A track that goes straight in for the kill... not an aural maze of noise leaving the listener confused. With the song building to a great little guitar break, Doves is a confident and poppy dance number, worthy of air play across the radio waves anywhere round the globe. Faint praise this ain’t...

Imagine if, in an alternate universe, Friends of Luca Brasi were playing a stadium and had a band anthem where all the fans held a lit lighter in the air, then the next track, ‘Fell Apart’, is surely the one. With a feel fondly reminiscent of XTC, Fell Apart is haunting and catchy, atmospheric and melodic, with a nice sing-a-long chorus... “Whatever you do, Whatever you say, Won’t be impressed, And I think I’ll walk away”... like a classic 60s kitchen sink drama or a 70s Play for Today metamorphosing into a great tune – it rolls along like a punchy drama with a beginning, a middle and a gritted teeth conclusion… I know I’m being partisan here, but that’s pure ‘pop’ art genius.

2015 looks like it might be a good year for these boys from East London. They just have to keep up the momentum - and I’m sure they will... Even their beloved West Ham are doing well in the league... yet unlike The Hammers these fellas are proving way more consistent and aren’t throwing away results! Boom boom.

At the moment the single is available only via the bands’ Facebook page...

ZANI is already looking forward to their next release and in the meantime, do your very best to catch them live soon. You won’t be disappointed.


Read 4775 times Last modified on Wednesday, 29 April 2015 16:11
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