I’m a musically eternal optimist, forever hoping the next track that I listen to will blow my mind; the next band I see will create a defining moment in time; the next contact on social media eliciting a plea to listen to their bands new single that’s set to ‘take the world by storm’, will at least be palatable enough to get beyond the first chorus. Sadly and frequently, eternal optimism can be crushingly disappointing!
There’s such a tidal wave of music out there ethereally vying for aural attention that sometimes it all just blends into a beige cacophony of nothingness, grand statements of sterility, voluminously vacuous………………… but still I live in hope for salvation, of enlightenment.
I follow many bands who get in touch and will usually engage with most initially, often with no real expectation of progressing any further than number bumps on the followers scale. But sometimes it’s a worthy exercise and you find real gems, niche artists, bands deserving any promotion they can get. And so, proudly waving my ‘fortune favours the brave’ flag, last week I opened a Twitter message from a band who had recently followed me called Cairo Son who were throwing out a ‘Hi and thanks for following us!!! Check out our video for our new single ‘Devils Tongue’’ message replete with a link to their new single via their YouTube channel. My curiosity was piqued but my expectations were held in check.
London based Cairo Son are a band who instantly look like they belong. Whether it be ripping apart Barfly or owning the Saturday night headline slot at Download, they LOOK like they were put on this earth to fulfil a clear objective, rock and fuckin roll.
And rock and fuckin roll they certainly do!!
This is not a band who mask a lack of substance with a calculated ‘on-brand’ style. If vocalist and guitarist Magdy, bassist Rico and drummer Dave look like they could be staring off the cover of the latest issue of Rolling Stone, they carry a heavy, riff laden punch that would knock most pimped-up, preening pretenders clean off any stage. There is a tightness to their sound, a heavy Cantrell-esque expanse of brutal savagery, interleaved with melodic heaviness that leaves you questioning whether you missed an announcement that a new post-grunge super-group had been born from the ashes of bands that defined your life. I’m sure there is a story behind them but right now, with the launch of their new album Storm Clouds, the solid follow-up to 2012’s stunning Heart Against The Feather debut, the headlines should start to write themselves.
This is an album that should take centre stage in any ‘repeat play’ line-up. From the dark intricacy of the opening riff and hook of the first track, Lost In The Shadow, this album demands the spotlight. Vocally, Magdy has the ability to emote on a very engaging level, imploring you to believe that he has lived every tortured moment of the sublime lyrics. This isn’t a band devoid of experience. Second track, Lion In A Cage, and the following track and latest single Devils Tongue, define just how cohesive this band are. They create a sonically surging powerhouse of a sound with a rhythm section that drives relentless pillars of power that allows Magdy’s guitar and vocal to deliver that killer punch. You can’t pull a standout track from the six on offer with this album. Each instantly hook you in and mainline straight to your brain. Give Me Strength, the penultimate song on Storm Clouds is a stunning, pulsing beast that builds melancholy layer on melancholy layer to a fevered climax but it’s the closing track Storm Clouds that elevates this to a ‘MUST HAVE’ album for me. It is one of those tracks made for the intimate gig but with the menacing latency to devour a festival crowd.
And in that sentence resides everything that should have Cairo Son as a name that trips off your tongue when discussing your favourite bands, gigs that will forever remain in the emotionally etched memories of ‘I was there’ moments. This band rock, REALLY ROCK. They are not pretenders. To me, this band are the downright clearest example of how the music establishment is so fucking lost because, while the mainstream rock music stations are airing the bland and banal there are bands as good as Cairo Son who are not getting the attention they deserve and this desparately needs resolving.
So go out and rectify that right now…… buy this album, go see them, contact your favourite venue and implore them to book these guys, request songs by these guys from your favourite station because ROCK MUSIC needs them and YOU need them……Seriously, if you only buy one album from a band you haven’t heard of before, make it THIS ONE!! Stunning, absolutely stunning.
ps.. checkout the acoustic set from The Whisky A Go-Go on YouTube (see below). Incredible!!!
Storm Clouds is a self-release on Cairo Son Records and can be purchased via the bands website www.cairoson.com
You can follow the band on Twitter here: @Cairo_Son
On Facebook here: Cairo Son Official
On YouTube here: Cairo Son YouTube Channel
On BandCamp here: Bandcamp
Images by Real Gig Reel with no rights implied: Link