Video Of The Week – The Cliftons

Ralph’s favourite video this week is Scarlett by Aberdeen band The Cliftons.

The Cliftons have supported luminaries such as The Bluetones and Man Made plus headlined at venues such as The Lemon Tree. The Cliftons are also set to release their follow up EP on January 21st with a hometown show in Tunnels.

The Cliftons are: James Will on Vocals/Guitar, Andrew Joseph on lead Guitar, Bilal Benzahia on Drums and Keir Smith on Bass.

On Ralph’s ‘ones to watch’ list 2017.


Dean Owens. Into The Sea: Deluxe Edition. Drumfire Record

Blabber 'n' Smoke


2015’s Into The Sea is perhaps the most perfectly realised of Dean Owens‘ albums rivalling Whisky Hearts for fans affections despite the presence of his two most iconic songs (Man From Leith and Raining In Glasgow) on the latter. Both albums were recorded in Nashville and both feature Owens’ long time compadre Will Kimbrough but Into The Sea, recorded seven years after Whisky Hearts is a better distillation of Owen’s Celtic Americana, the players and producer Neilson Hubbard at the top of their game. It’s also a more passionate album. At the time of recording Owens and his family were coming to terms with the death of his sister Julie from cancer, the album is dedicated to her. When I spoke to him about the recording of the album he said,” It was a difficult time for me when I was making the album for various reasons and a…

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Interview with Dark Poet Lynn Gerrard

Lynn Gerrard DarkI’d like to welcome Lynn Gerrard to Infinite Pathways today to chat about her first book Darkness and Decadence – the Grumblings of a Gargoyle and other authorly interests.

Lynn Gerrard was born in St Helens, Merseyside, where she now lives with her husband Michael and their Jack Russell, Ralph. Having studied psychology, psychoanalysis, sociology and criminal law, Lynn finds it easy to observe the darker side of human nature and this is reflected in her writing. Lynn is a keen activist for mental health awareness and has performed as part of the Stand Up To Stigma campaign.

Thanks for coming!

A Small Cup of CoffeeYou are most welcome and thank you for inviting me…lovely place you have here! OoOo coffee too, most kind!

I can’t have my guests parched now, can I 😉

Can you describe your poetic style for us and bit about how you’ve developed your written voice?

My poetic style is…

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Ralph’s Top 10 – 15.11.15

Follow Ralph’s Life Indie Music Blog on Pinterest.

Now Mr Snuggles and I have been sitting with our heads down counting the hits on each blog to see which band’s got what place.

The Top Ten Blogged Band Chart is played every Sunday 5-7pm on Radio KC as part of Ralph’s Indie Show. (1)

No 1…Silver Coast

Ralph‘s given tracks by Inverness-based band Silver Coast spins on his Radio KC Indie Show a few times now over the last couple of years so it was with great interest that news of the new Seasons EP (which includes the recently released single Wake Up) hit the kennel’s inbox.

Wake Up is possibly Silver Coast‘s most ‘bouncy’ track to date and definitely aimed at a wider audience. Still holding onto the anthemic feel of earlier releases (big guitars and soaring vocals) but it has a more ‘populist’ and radio-friendly feel in a Twin Atlantic stylee.

Anyone that follows Ralph on Twitter will know he’s partial to a bit of toast, preferably charred around the edges, so it’s no surprise there was a bit of excitement here in the kennel when the soon to be released (November 2nd) Money As Debt Double A Side Single by Official Burnt Toast hit the turntable. With flip side Hi Time it’s a great intro to their Tubs ‘n Tongue-Fu album on Sonskrif.

No 3..Jimmy Brewer

It seems like Jimmy Brewer has been possessed by the artistic soul of James Taylor during the early Sweet Baby James years with the release of  Strangers, a follow-up to his highly acclaimed debut album As Time Stands Still two years ago.

Jimmy Brewer exudes songwriting of the highest and most emotive quality for one so young and no surprise he’s supported the likes of Joan Armatrading prior to embarking on a headlining tour to promote the release of Strangers

No 4…The Undivided

It’s always nice to see a band with a bit of heart and soul and there’s none more so than Welsh four-piece The Undivided as their new single and accompanying video Invincible highlights the need for organ donors and compassionately outlining the issues of gain and loss involved.

Formed in 2009 The Undivided have made quite an impact on the South Wales musical landscape and now their anthemic brand of alt rock is reaching further afield.  They’re impressive live and have a growing fanbase.  

Along with the ‘B’ Side Whisky Going Free, the tracks are from the most excellent new album Rocket Out Of London which has been recieving rave reviews from all the usual suspects and featured as a Steve Lamacq BBC6 Music Recommend. 

Lead track I Hate School is Alice Cooper meets The Stones with a soupçon of Sex Pistols and it’s deeee-liciously manic rock ‘n’ roll by Damn Vandals.

No 6…Hyena Kill

Ralph’s not averse to rocking it out and there’s few better rocking it out duos on the unsigned circuit than Manchester’s Hyena Kill (Steven Dobb on vocal/guitars and Lorna Blundell on drums) who are crowdfunding part of the release of their debut album.

The idea behind the crowdfunding project on is to allow the fans to become involved and help them finish this debut album, which they’ve managed to fund themselves up to this point.

No 7…Peach Trees

As an East meets West collaboration (that’s Cleethorpes and Southport, not Russia and America) Peach Trees have come up with a pretty damn fine piece of get up on the floor, funky-ass disco music, made all the more listenable thanks to the soulful vocals of London-based Mr Ernie Jackson.

The release of This Is The Love by the nascent get-together of musical minds Ambrose Chappel and Dave Hubbard brings a poptastic blend of retro disco vibes and soul vocalising.

Manchester band All The King’s Men have released a new EP called Making My Escape and it’s another step up in their attempt to establish themselves as one of the top rocking it out Indie bands in the North West.

Lead track Fever is very much in the rocking it out vain and guaranteed to be a live favourite, whilst Someday has a more laid back psychedelic feel. It’s one for a lazy Sunday’s listening pleasure.

No 9…The Society

There’s always an abundance of Manchester bands to listen to who tend to try and sound like the usual Manc suspects, however, shiny bright young things The Society are going some way to buck that trend with the release of their latest track Given Up

They’ve got a fresh sounding guitar driven sound and; (it’s got a lighter, bouncier Editors feel to it in a Lottery Winners styleedespite a relatively low on-line profile, The Society seem to be garnering a loyal following locally.

No 10…Black Cat Bone

Ralph has been giving Edinburgh band Black Cat Bone the odd spin on his Radio KC Indie Show recently due to their intensely likeable bluesy sound, so it’s with great pleasure that we can announce the release of their debut album Growl on the 31st October.  Ralph has had a sneak preview and I can tell you now their alt rock bluesy style is shining through with this release.

From the moody John The Revelator to the gritty Canned Heatesque (think On The Road Again) eponymously titled lead track Growl Black Cat Bone are laying out their musical stall…

An open letter to Katie Hopkins


Dear Katie,

Earlier today it came to my attention that you had tweeted your opinions about depression – the biggest mental health issue that faces this country, bar your ignorance.

Many believe that the opinions you spout are nothing more than a cry for attention much like when a dog defecates for the attention of its owner, which ironically is a form of separation anxiety.

When I read your tweets I was not surprised that you had decided to shit on the floor in the hopes of a reaction – Something you have done many times and will probably continue to do until you fade away into obscurity.
Unfortunately this is not the Big Brother house so you cannot be voted out and we cannot turn you down as you did to Lord Alan Sugar – because, like a bad smell you return to fill the nose of society with…

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Now Ralph’s more of a guitar band animal, however after having covered Liverpool’s The Little Secrets and SeaWitches recently he’s been showing his mellow side. So much so, he had a listen in to the low-fi electronic vibings of Chester duo Neutronic.

They’ve just released Closer on download earlier this month and it’s a delightfully melodic soundscape using the contrast of Luliana’s slightly accented vocal backed by Paul’s smooth English tones overlaid on Neutronic‘s cleverly worked 80’s electro musicality in a Cocteau Twins stylee.


Having previously worked together on a one-off electro pop project they’ve got together again to bring us Neutronic.

The duo have crafted an exceedingly assured sound which is proving popular with radio stations. Needless to say Ralph’s giving Neutronic a spin on his Radio KC show. They’ve featured on Tom Robinson’s BBC Radio 6 Mixtape and Dave Monks on BBC Radio Merseyside.