Experimental post-punk project, Abrasive Trees release three-track debut

Abrasive Trees, Band Of Holy Joy, Indie, Jo Beth Young, Matthew Rochford, Music, Noir Songs, post punk, Punk Noir Magazine, Rise, Torch Songs

mail (1)

Experimental post-punk project, Abrasive Trees have announced the release of a three-track single Bound For An Infinite Sea on Wise Queen Records/Shapta on Friday 4th September.

The title track, a driven, layered and atmospheric song with spectral, intricate guitars – sits alongside two more ambient, immersive tracks and features vintage drum-machines, acoustic drums recorded in a Victorian rectory and an array of acclaimed musicians.

Abrasive Treesis the solo project of Scottish-born guitarist and singer Matthew Rochford.  About the release he said:

 “These songs are a bit dark, but there’s also a positive energy behind them. In essence they are about the importance of staying compassionate – whatever the circumstances.  The title track is actually about witnessing suffering and finding a way to be empowered to do something meaningful in the face of sorrow.  There is so much intensity in this world and it can get a bit overwhelming can’t it?  I wrote and recorded these three songs amidst loss so there’s heartbreak, but also something hopeful and spiritual that I hope will connect with how others might be feeling right now.

“Creating music is simultaneously a release for me and an offering to those who feel that ‘just coping’ is a good day.  I think being a musician you learn the value of being in the moment and expressing what needs to be expressed. During this strange time, it’s especially important to me to stay present in a positive way and this single is part of that.

Matthew is a former member of Jo-Beth Young’s live and studio bands for RISE and Talitha Rise as well as being in the post-punk bands Council of Giants, The Impossible Moon and a recent Rothko collaborator.

The production features an line-up of collaborators including Jo Beth Young (RISE/Talitha Rise), Steven Hill (Evi Vine), Mark Parsons (Eat Lights Become Lights) and Matthew’s brother, Sebastian (Polar Bear/Pulled By Magnets).  The single was mixed and mastered by Mark Beazley (Rothko/The Band Of Holy Joy).

All three tracks are available on limited-edition cassette or CD or download from their bandcamp page on Friday 4th September as well as streaming via all the usual platforms.  A video to accompany the release (by visual artist Jess Wooler) will premier on the day prior to release.

Bio:  Abrasive Trees is the creative vehicle for the music of Matthew Rochford. 

Matthew was born in Aberdeen to Anglo-Indian/Anglo-Irish parents and has been playing guitar since he was a child. He’s a former member of Jo-Beth Young’s live and studio bands for RISE and Talitha Rise as well as being in the post-punk bands Council of Giants and The Impossible Moon. This year he has been recording for Mark Beazley’s Rothko and Jo Beth Young.


The approach is experimental and immersive and the sound could be described as spectral, layered and brooding with intricate, drone-drenched guitars.  The overall energy owes as much to post-punk as it does to ambient psychedelia, grunge or post-rock.

Strings, dulcimers, guitars that sound like old synths or sitars, voices in the distance and stories that take you somewhere. Esoteric bass, analogue drum machines and acoustic drums recorded in a Victorian house all help to forge the sound.

As well as writing the music, lyrics and producing, Matthew also sings, plays guitars, dulcimer, Ebow and programmes the analogue drum machine.

The debut single and video is scheduled for release September 2020 via Wise Queen Records with an album following in 2021.

An array of accomplished collaborators have contributed to the project so far, both live and in the studio:

Nadia Abdelaziz – Voice, Dulcimer

Ffion Atkinson (Johnny Powell and The Seasonal Beasts) – Voice

Mark Beazley (Rothko/Band of Holy Joy) – Electric Bass

​Laurence Collyer (Diamond Family Archive) – Shruti Box, Steel Guitar

Steven Hill (Evi Vine) – Guitars

​Jay Newton (Quiet Quiet Band)  – Keys

Mark Parsons (Eat Lights Become Lights) – Electric Bass

Ben Roberts (Evi Vine) – Cello

Seb Rochford (Polar Bear/Pulled By Magnets) – Drums

Peter Yates (Fields of The Nephilim) – Guitars

Jo-Beth Young (Talitha Rise/RISE/Yates & Young) – Voice, Guitars, Percussion, Tibetan Bowl, Recorder

Appearing on this single:

Steven Hill – Guitars

Mark Parsons – Electric Bass

Matthew Rochford – Vocals, Guitars, Drum Machine

Sebastian Rochford – Drums

Jo-Beth Young – Additional Voice

 Written and Produced by Matthew Rochford

Mixed and Mastered by Mark Beazley

Released by Wise Queen Records/Shapta

Publishing: Speegra


Spellbound: The Story of John McGeoch

Art, John McGeoch, Manchester, Music, post punk, punk, Punk Noir Magazine

john mcgeoch

From Wikipedia:

John Alexander McGeoch (25 August 1955 – 4 March 2004) was a Scottish rock music guitarist who played with several bands of the post-punk era, including MagazineSiouxsie and the BansheesVisage, and Public Image Ltd.

He has been described as one of the most influential guitarists of his generation. In 1996 he was listed by Mojo in their “100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time” for his work on the Siouxsie and the Banshees song “Spellbound“. Signature characteristics of his playing style included an inventive arpeggiosstring harmonics, the uses of flanger and an occasional disregard for conventional scales.

Musician and producer Steve Albini praised McGeoch for his guitar playing with Magazine and Siouxsie and the Banshees, qualifying as “great choral swells, great scratches and buzzes, great dissonant noise and great squealy death noise What a guy” and further commenting: “anybody can make notes. There’s no trick. What is a trick and a good one is to make a guitar do things that don’t sound like a guitar at all. The point here is stretching the boundaries”.

Big Gold Dream

Grant McPhee, Indie, Music, Orange Juice, Paul Research, post punk, punk, Punk Noir Magazine, Subway Sect, Vic Godard

big gold dreamFrom Wikipedia:

‘Big Gold Dream is a 2015 film documenting the story of Scotland’s post-punk scene, focusing on record labels Fast Product and Postcard Records. Directed by filmmaker Grant McPhee, the film’s name is taken from the 1981 Fire Engines single of the same name, the final release on the Pop Aural label. The film won the 2015 Edinburgh International Film Festival Audience Award.



Johnny Britton

Indie, Johnny Britton., Music, Orange Juice, post punk, Punk Noir Magazine, Subway Sect, The Clash
johnny britton
Johnny Britton’s career has beaten a strident path as an innovator through the cutting-edge first wave of punk, the sophistication of post punk, as a solo artiste protégé, a catalyst for new acts, as an in-demand singer/musician in the prominent musical groups Subway Sect and Orange Juice and the DJ of Soho’s Club Left and the WOMAD festivals
Singer/guitarist with Subway Sect, Orange Juice and solo artist protégé of Clash/Specials/Dexys/Subway Sect/Joboxers manager Bernard Rhodes.
This album is a ‘best of’ encompassing the wide range of musical styles in the world of Johnny Britton, from his singles ‘The One That Got Away’ and ‘Perpetual Emotion’, to rare acoustic Latin, Cool Bop and Swing, Punk and Classic Rock. Many of these tracks are now heard for the very first time.


released November 23, 2018

Johnny Britton: vocals, guitars
Chris Bostock: spanish guitar, bass
Sean McLusky: drums, percussion
Rob Marche: electric guitar
DC Collard: keyboards, bass, trumpet
Alfonso: Bass
Charlie Llewellin: drums

Contraband by Liz Davinci

Euro Noir, Indie, International Noir, Liz Davinci, Music, Noir, post punk, Punk Noir Magazine, Torch Songs

The song “Contraband” was originally called “Emergency”.

One of the songs originally planned for the EP “Contraband” stopped breathing about 85% of the way to being done and I needed to write a new one – an “emergency” song.

At first I didn’t want to give up on the originally intended song and it was a sad thing to eliminate it, but we did it.

I’m so glad I was honest with myself because “Contraband” was born and it’s a unique song that I really like.

It’s the only one of my songs that I completely made the beat for (and I am proud of the beat, but I prefer tapping Underhatchet’s expertise in this area).

“Contraband” is vocally/pianistically pretty much as close to an improvisation as it gets for me.  I just let the ideas flow linearly and used abstract lyrics to try to create a mood.  It went smoothly and I preserved almost all of the initial ideas in the final version.

I composed the bass line last and Underhatchet liked it so much on the demo that he wanted to play it on the final version.  In the video he is playing it on a bass guitar, though in the recording it is played on a keyboard.

liz davinci


Songs 1978 – 2010 by Richard Sanderson

Music, Paul D. Brazill, Peter Ord, post punk, Punk Noir Magazine, Richard Sanderson, Ronnie Burke, Teesside

richard sanderson

For the second release in Linear Obsessional’s “Retro Linear” series, we present a collection of songs recorded over a 32 year period by Richard Sanderson.

We have taken the unusual step of allowing tracks to be downloaded individually, as there is a wide stylistic variety.

“I am now mainly known as an experimental musician and free improviser. This collection, however, focuses on the other side of my work – as a singer and songwriter. This is an area I don’t really work in any more – my band “Foulkestone” (with Jude Cowan Montague) only performs traditional material, and I have found that traditional song can express more than enough of the things I’d like to say. So this is something of a “goodbye to all that”

The tracks on this collection run from “Hollow Call” recorded by an early version of Drop in 1978 to “Quill” a solo recording from 2010. Other tracks were recorded by the groups Halcyon Days and The Euphoria Case (in several incarnations)

The recordings range from 24 track studio recordings to mono cassette recordings. All the recordings have been re-mastered where ever possible from the original tapes.”
Richard Sanderson 2012

All songs composed by Richard Sanderson except “Babes in the Wood”, which is traditional, but arranged by Richard Sanderson.

Richard Sanderson – Vocals, Guitar, Keyboard, Electronics, Alto Saxophone, Melodeon, Accordion, Laptop

Other musicians in chronological order-

Mark Spybey – Drums
Mark Sanderson – Percussion
Neil Jones – Keyboards
Chris Oberon – Bass
Andy Kiss – Drums
Paul D Brazill – Bass
Ronnie Burke – Drums
Peter Ord – Guitar
Martyn Simpson – Guitar, Bass
Gary Phillips – Keyboards
John Silvester – Tenor Sax
Pat Power – Bass
Dave Power – Guitar
Simon Lindsay – Drums
Chris Cundy – Bass Clarinet
Ian R Watson – Trumpet
Debra Scacco – Flute
Clive Pearman – Guitar/Banjo

With many thanks to the other musicians who’ve been kind enough to play on my songs,- Duncan Goddard, Gary Simpson, Stephen Weatherall, Helen Walker, Chris Burton, Mark Braby, Andy Coules.




Stumpfer Gegenstand by GROTTO TERRAZZA

Art, CUT SURFACE, GROTTO TERRAZZA, Music, post punk, Punk Noir Magazine


Transforming from a blunt object into a smoldering saint, just another day thought on the never ending collage of life, a pattern that continuously evolves like Grotto Terrazza, the Munich based art/music/life project of Thomas Schamann.

‘Stumpfer Gegenstand’ (Blunt Object) is his musical debut for Cut Surface and Maple Death, a beautiful intimate album of translucent dark beat poetry, that flickers between rhythmical murder ballads, Neue Deutsche Welle, the early experiments of Palais Schaumburg and the industrial malaise of Cabaret Voltaire; this is art-punk that plays with musique concrete and finds it’s pop sensibility rooted in EBM and folk noir.

Schamann started collecting bits and pieces of this and that in order to use them for a cut-up of some sort in 2015. Slowly two distinct and cohesive pieces came to life, his editorial debut, “Trattoria Nihil”, a 250 page collection of beat poetry in German & drawings, and this album ‘Stumpfer Gegenstand’, started roughly in 2017 in Paris, France. Thomas was on tour with his other band, darkwave Berlin project Bleib Modern, with a few days off, and decided to split from his bandmates and embark on an odyssey through Pigalle and other parts of the city; this is where the seeds of the album were firmly planted.


My Chemical Romance – The Black Parade: A Blast Of Emo Charm by Mark McConville

Mark McConville, Music, My Chemical Romance, post punk, Punk Noir Magazine

my chemical romance

My Chemical Romance – The Black Parade: A Blast Of Emo Charm.

In 2006, a band revitalized the emo genre by releasing an album that would dominate the airwaves and solidify them as pioneers. This band, aptly named My Chemical Romance, powered through with black magic in their hearts and songs of heartbreak and poignancy at their disposal. Fronted by Gerard Way, the act also raised up their ambitions and proudly exhibited these tracks that would create a storm in the music industry.

Aside from brewing a storm, the outfit garnered a tribe of emo followers who flocked to see them in concert. And the Black Parade was the tour de force of 2006, a staple of true intensity. Forever in their hearts, these fans would dress like their heroes too, and they’d replicate their style, and they’d proudly buy the album to hear it in its sombre glory.

And they cited The Black Parade as the next great album after Green Day’s American Idiot which hit the industry two years previously. An audacious claim, but a legit one. With it being deemed as the opus of a generation, many critics and fans dissected it, giving their opinions. After analyzing it, they said it deserved the attention.

A hard listen, The Black Parade signified rage and harshness. But, it propelled this band to dizzying heights, putting them under the limelight. This meteoric rise was on the cards even before The Black Parade hit the shelves, as My Chemical Romance released their breakthrough Three Cheers For Sweet Revenge in 2004. That record may not have been as successful as the behemoth, but it shook the bones of the darkened elite.

Sweet Cheers For Sweet Revenge was a raw affair. On The Black Parade, My Chemical Romance showed their excellence. Little sparks of lyricism turned into full-blown storylines, hope hung by the balance, guitars sprung into life, and dreams rang true. Connecting it to the army of emo devotees didn’t take long either.

And what is it that makes The Black Parade Definitive? Why is it an innovative record? It could be its subject, its arresting plot, its dark narration, its inner core of recklessness. Or, maybe it alerts all the disenchanted to stand up and collectively put their fists up in the air.

Rebellious fans aside, The Black Parade is a decisive record because it exudes emotion and brings people together. All of it, rings true and takes emo music out of its cage and gives it a chance to exert its themes and influence. Plenty of people were skeptical, but then downed their cynicism like weapons of power.

Songs, there are 13 tracks. All dark and despairing. Some slow and some fast, some trigger hysteria and others hit the nerve of sadness. Gerard Way sings with authority and laments. His voice a signature sound, his lyrical prowess sublime. A prime example of this is on Welcome To The Black Parade.

This track dazzles. Think Green Day’s Jesus Of Suburbia, but dressed in blackness. After such blistering thrills, I Don’t Love You lowers the heat. This song hit the airwaves and stayed there for weeks. Guitars are slower here, there’s little punch, but the sentiment is infectious.

Disenchanted does this well too. Snapshots of youth becomes obsolete. It’s an experimental track, conveying loss and youthful abandonment. Way sings quietly until the guitar presence thunders through. Famous Last Words relights the tension. A fueled track, which bursts the banks of emotion. It also showcases the band’s instrumental credibility.

The Black Parade doesn’t dwell on pop dramatics. It is an emo record with rock underpinnings. To this day, the record resonates, and its charm vigorously pulls at the emotions. With it here, it aids the disenfranchised, and that’s commendable.


Green Day – Father Of All: A Slide Into Pop Dramatics That Don’t Fully Work by Mark McConville

Green Day, Hardcore, Mark McConville, Music, Non-fiction, post punk, punk, Punk Noir Magazine

Green Day was a band that tackled political surges. And the last time they fully exerted their musical muscle entirely was when smash hit American Idiot hit the foundations of the music industry with an almighty bang. In present times, the band hasn’t eclipsed the raucousness and importance of that record. Yes, we received Revolution Radio in 2016, and before then, we got Uno, Dos, Tre, which came as a trio of uninspiring discs. In 2009, the outfit had to try and outshine American Idiot in subject matter and chords. Unfortunately, 21st Century Breakdown didn’t surpass its predecessor. It did have its hits, but also had too many uneventful notes. Not many fans or critics praised 21st Century Breakdown, and its relevance quickly evaporated.

Green Day

Roll on today and Green Day don’t give a damn. All of the adrenaline and musical fundamentals have been sucked out of this trio. New record Father Of All, doesn’t highlight the band’s creative ingenuity at any point. It has its moments where they can be forgiven for their reckless abandon, but missteps are aplenty. The first half of the album, drags on, plastered in mediocre lyrics and one dimensional instrumentals. If you listen on, you think it’s all a dream.

It isn’t a dream. It is reality. Green Day of days gone by wouldn’t have released Father Of All as a record of significance. They were against this sound, this melting pot of inferiority. Some critics have praised the band’s audacity, the risks. But, many fans have been left bewildered by a chocked sound. Father Of All’s second half, although still assaulted by cheap lyricism, beats life into a sound lacking in development and invigoration.

Father Of All Image

Let’s say the opening period of Father Of All didn’t exist and Green Day released an EP with the last remaining songs. The songs which aren’t fit enough, but are infectious enough to count, then we’d be somewhat entertained. Sugar Youth brings forth some stability. It’s a catchy number. Lyrically strangled, but the riffs will please the sceptics. Junkies On A High sparks some eagerness. The words seem to fit into a cohesive sequence, which is a rarity on Father Of All. Grattifia begins with claps and a 1980’s backbeat. Lead singer/songwriter Billie Joe Armstrong, sings with intent and says ‘’This city isn’t big enough for dreamers’’. Surprisingly the song isn’t a slog.

Die hard Green Day fans will be left disappointment, there’s no doubting that. They may revolt, but what can they do? And a revolution will not happen, not a chance. This powerhouse of a band have declined, they may have fallen into state of writers block, or maybe they don’t give a f**k? The latter seems legit.

Bio: Mark McConville is a freelance music journalist who has written for many online and print publications. He also likes to write dark fiction.