Indie/Indie Rock Punk/Rock Why We Love

Why We Love: Airways

Five years ago, upon being gutted on missing out on a ticket to see Muse and then Nothing But Thieves, I decided to check out who’d be supporting the latter on their tour and check out the band that I’d now be missing out on. I found myself one gloomy morning on my way to college checking out that very band, Airways, and from the moment that first chorus dropped I was hooked. The song in question was One Foot, a track that blends sounds from such indie rock icons such as Oasis, Arctic Monkeys and Gorillaz, but in a very modern way a’la YUNGBLUD or RAT BOY, taking indie and punk right into the heart of the 21st century. Discovering this band as the support act of the support act of my favourite band at the time, it can’t be said anymore but, man never skip out on the opening band.

Later I managed to encourage my mates to listen to Airways because they just so happened to release a smash hit that made it onto Spotify’s ‘Walk Like A Badass’ playlist, Reckless Tongue. A song that combines the classic style of 2007 Arctic Monkeys with the indie and hip hop modernity of 2017. Just a menacing tune that makes you want to headbang in the middle of the street, shop or wherever you may be when you find yourself listening to their EP Starting To Spin. Alongside One Foot and Reckless Tongue, this EP boasted White Noise Boys a track that sparks some lowkey ska vibes, not the most conventional vibes but enough that you can hear a band like Madness or The Specials perform it. But the classic indie rock sound wasn’t all they had to offer, scratching the surface of some electronic sounds with the title track.

So fast forward a year and the Airway boys settle for Nothing But Thieves‘ guitarist Dominic Craik to do some producing work for them, which splashed a cavern of depth so visceral in the form of Blue Gasoline. God you can just taste the talent Airways have to offer here on out, it’s a dick tease the fact they’ve not released an album at this point. Combining synths to reverb-drenched guitars in a dreamy journey that makes you want the clouds to just swallow you up.

Fast forward a year yet again and we’re gifted the double single Trampoline / The End. The latter gets overshadowed by Trampoline a bit so I want to gloss over The End which is a beast of a track. What do you do when you’ve done the whole indie rock thing and the ethereal soundscape? Combine them in the most monstrous way possible. Fans of Twenty One Pilots seem to take a liking to this track in particular, so if that stuff is up your alley, make it a point to check out this one.

But then switching stuff up once again, going back to a more indie realm, Airways dropped their latest single, Out Of Luck in 2019. Which is a little while ago so I am praying this means we’re all the more closer to a debut album. Back to a faster pace upbeat style, but taking guitar inspiration from the likes of Johnny Marr but perhaps with a more disciplined surrounding, but then kicking off into another classic headbanger in the chorus.

Imma leave you guys with Alien. A song about the bands rejected US Visa’s leaving them unable to play at SXSW. Lyrically it’s actually more of a funny story, I mean I’m sure not for them the amount of money they probably lost in that application was probably no joke, but hey it made for a good song and hopefully, in a few years time they’ll be playing it to huge crowds on a headline tour through the very country that said “nah mate, not today”. I’m paraphrasing here but you get me bro.

Listen to Airways on Spotify before they blow up so you can tell your mates “I told you so”.

Indie/Indie Rock Reviews

Review: Oscar Lang – Antidote to Being Bored (Single)

Slacker rock superstar Oscar Lang is back with a brand new track that really nails in the new psychedelic gritty rock combo we were gifted with in Hand Over You Head in September. The cosmic hobo soundscape here completely lifts you out of your shoes, a wall of noise to rock your body till the cows come home. Lang announcing a brand new EP (with ‘Antidote..’ being the title track), was exactly what I needed to hear amongst the misery of the UK’s second lockdown.

The track definitely lives up to its name, after listening to it, I was the complete opposite of bored. Whatever Lang does to mix his music is always astounding and the new track is no exception. Something in the way his voice becomes buried within the instrumentation just blows your mind. ‘Antidote’ has a heavier and more brooding vibe, expelling so much nostalgia for mid-90s rock with such a filthy sound.

Lang said in a recent interview about the upcoming EP “I wanted to get a little darker with this EP but continue with the sound of the previous one. I feel like with the last one I really found a style of music that I love and am just excited to play. So this EP was all about developing that sound further.” And thus the stadium rocker Antidote to Being Bored was born and the EP to follow on December 4th. I think we’re all praying this will be the soundtrack of a post lockdown life, a glimmer of hope to look forward to.

There’s not much I can say aside from the fact it’s an absolute banger, the guy knows how to write a mega tune. I’ve had this song on repeat for about an hour now and my sandwich has gotten cold as I’ve been so immersed in the rapid ecstasy of ‘Antidote’. Just listen to the song, it’s a beautiful thick mess of noise. If you could fuse the sounds of Oasis’ ‘Morning Glory’ with Interpol’s ‘Marauder’ and put them in the Oscar Lang blender, you’d have this masterpiece.

So start adding to your playlists, and check out your local record shop to see where you can pre-order your copy because it’s going to be a stomper you’ll have to own.

‘Antidote to Being Bored’ Tracklist:
1. Antidote to Being Bored
2. That Wasn’t What I Said
3. Pretty Princess
4. Red Cherry Chapstick
5. Something Has Changed

Listen to the title track on Spotify now.

Indie/Indie Rock Pop/Indie Pop Why We Love

Why We Love: Inhaler

Just when you thought Dublin couldn’t possibly produce any more incredible bands, you suddenly discover the music of Inhaler. This four-piece rock band, fronted by son of U2’s Bono, have a more unusual beginning than most. They met and first began playing together in 2012 while still at school in Ireland. Their first ever gig together was the school’s talent contest, where they performed a cover of Nirvana’s ‘Smells Like Teen Spirit.’

In 2015, they became Inhaler after being given the nickname by their school friends due to lead singer Elijah Hewson’s struggles with Asthma. Three years later, the band released their debut single ‘I Want You’ and the boys quickly gained popularity, becoming known for their dirty bass lines, heavy rhythms and psychedelic melodies which are highly reminiscent of early 2000s bands like The Killers. Despite this relation in sound, the boys dress sense and album artwork actually bare a strong resemblance to an early version of The Smiths.

Hailing from a regular Irish college rather than one that specialises in music, the band have said their ‘weird’ style and music taste was ‘poles apart’ from their fellow peers, which naturally meant the boys had to stick together.

After recording a demo of their single ‘Ice Cream Sundae,’ they quickly gained the attention of none other than Antony Genn, producer and former member of Pulp, who nurtured the band, giving them the studio space they needed and forcing them to practice harder. This school talent show band soon began playing sold-out venues in and around Dublin, and after releasing six more singles, have become the fully-fledged band-on-tour they are today.

Inspired by their parents vinyl collections, which included bands such as The Stone Roses, Depeche Mode and New Order, they’ve managed to produce a sound of their very own including the best bits of all these inspirations. They possess a psychedelic structure similar to Interpol, a drop of New Order’s synthesizer experimentation and a splash of Sonic Youth’s kick.

Robert Keating (Bass), Ryan McMahon (Drums), Josh Jenkinson (Guitar) and Elijah Hewson (Vocals) together have gained industry-wide attention, being featured in The NME 100 and finishing 5th in The BBC’s Sound of 2020 vote, incredible achievements for such a young band.

As the son on music legend and U2 frontman Bono, lead singer Elijah Hewson has clearly learnt from the best. For the sons and daughters of established musicians, there always comes a certain amount of pressure, but it seems Elijah and his band have managed to pioneer something new and blow those expectations out the water.

Inhaler have now gigged with the likes of Noel Gallagher on their first American tour. They began this year with the release of their single ‘We Have To Move On’ a song I haven’t stopped listening to since it’s release. Later, they released the double-sided single ‘Falling In’ in the build-up to the launch of their debut album which is yet to be announced. The band released this awesome video filmed during isolation of 2020, a time where they should have been gigging:

This is a band we can’t stop listening to, a true must-have on the playlists of fans of The Killers, The Smiths, Oasis, Pulp or any of the other bands mentioned above.

We look forward to the release of their album, but until then, indulge yourself in one of their fantastic singles.