Playlist: Best Of April 2012

By Chris Marshman

The Punktastic staff were tasked with picking three songs each from releases that they loved in April 2012, and you can see the results below:

Selected by Tom Aylott:
Straight Lines – Empty Chest
One of the great unsung heroes of the UK scene at the moment, ‘Empty Chest’ showcases exactly why Straight Lines’ second album ‘Freaks Like Us’ is something you need in your life.

Pennywise – Let Us Hear Your Voice
In what will probably be one of the turn ups for the books in 2012, Pennywise’s ‘All Or Nothing’ landed right at the end of April in the UK, and ‘Let Us Hear Your Voice’ is nothing short of awesome.

Cancer Bats – Old Blood
‘Dead Set On Living’ saw Cancer Bats fly the flag for hardcore/metal even higher ahead of a busy UK summer festival season, and ‘Old Blood’ shows off their dirty rock as well as any from the release.

Selected by Chris Marshman:
Balance and Composure – Separation (Acoustic EP from April)
Known for their heavy, hard hitting ways, Balance & Composure showing off of a different side with an acoustic version of ‘Separation’ sounds awesome works surprisingly well, and their acoustic release was a great listen.

The Sun And The Sea – So Far Away
The Sun And The Sea features former members of The Graduate, and are a must listen for any fans of the band. ‘So Far Away’ is a song that will resonate with a lot of people, and it’s taken from debut release ‘Nightfalls’, which is excellent.

Lostprophets – Jesus Walks
The best track by far off their new album, proving that when they want to show it, Lostprophets most definitely do still have it.

Selected by Clara Cullen:
Counting Crows – Like Teenage Gravity
It’s a long held rock n roll truth that cover albums aren’t supposed to be good, right? ‘Underwater Sunshine’ saw the return of my favourite wordsmiths Counting Crows to firmly stamp all over that hypothesis. ‘Like Teenage Gravity’ builds to a crescendo of melodic noise showing why Counting Crows are undoubtedly one of the best jam bands out there.

Jim Lockey and The Solemn Sun – New Natives
Their mix of rustic charm, pioneering spirit and carefully crafted songs have made Jim Lockey and The Solemn Sun’s album ‘Death’ my favourite album of 2012 so far. ‘New Natives’ is a highlight on an album full of them.

Cancer Bats – D.S.O.L
Cancer Bats have really set the bar high with Dead Set On Living. The title track contains all the headbanging fury we’ve come to expect from the band, while it also Shows why they are real crossover contenders, reaching far beyond the bread and butter metalheads.

Selected by Ben Tipple:
Blacklisters – Trickfuck
Edgier and dirtier than the vast majority of releases in 2012, ‘Trickfuck’ convulses through every style showcased on the sublime ‘BLKLSTRS’.

Jim Lockey and the Solemn Sun – Everything But The Heart
Despite taking the tempo down a notch, ‘Everything but the Heart’ shows off Lockey’s painfully real vocals while throwing a new spin on both country and folk.

Lostprophets – Bring ‘Em Down
Packing more of a punch than their last two albums put together, ‘Weapons’ opener ‘Bring ‘Em Down’ features the newer electronic sound while hinting back to some of the best moments on ‘Start Something’. An excellent track on a reasonably good album, and certainly a future live sing-along favourite.

Selected by Jamie Otsa:
Wires – Salve & Sting
Debut EP ‘To Conquer The Waves’ gave glimpses of greatness, and Wires show they’re more than capable of stepping things up with tense and haunting offering from sophomore release ‘Shadows’.

You Slut! – Magnifiererer
The UK’s brightest instrumental hopefuls destroy all competition with this musically superb math-rock offering from album ‘Medium Bastard’ – Derbyshire never sounded so good.

Blacklisters – Ask Yourself A Question If The Answer Is Go Fuck Yourself
The Leeds music scene beats us savagely round the head with another world-endingly heavy offering. Fuck you Leeds, and the horse you rode in on.