Leeds Music Scene

A Collection of Calamity: Volume One by Various Artists

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Reviewed on 19th March 2010.


A Collection of Calamity: Volume One

By Various Artists

This review is being submitted later than intended due to the initial CD not having the correct postage, and after paying the difference, the post office managed to redirect it around Leeds before it arrived on my doormat. So right from the start this "collection of odd-core classics" is fashionably late, and its title of 'Collection of Calamity' seems appropriate. However, describing this as calamitous is a bit like describing Oasis as Dangerous when they sound like The Beatles. Not calamity, but a lot of nice pop music.

This CD is being given away free (you probably have a copy of it by now, so you can give this review a review) in the finest record shops this great city has to offer, to promote the Rock and Roll Circus Studio, as well as to support the bands that use their facilities. So, I don't want to start reviewing each band individually, but rather this collection.

I may be getting old but I have found it hard to read the track listings on the back, and am pleased they sent the CD with a typed biog to aid my ailing eyes. But the artwork is eye-catching, and sets the tone for the delights in store. Eighteen tracks, all different, all well produced, mixed and mastered, and would make anyone with an interest look into using the studio - as well as investigating the bands on the CD. It is an excellent introduction to the Leeds indie-pop scene, featuring many recent cover and feature stars of Vibrations and NoTitle. Many of the names have been around for a few years honing their skills, with a few names I have not come across before to give added interest (for me anyway.)

The first three tracks pull you in nicely, starting with a keyboard riff from The Bacchae, we are straight into summer pop territory, catchy and bouncing along. The Rent Boys (a bold name by anyone's standards,) stamp on their pop in a discordant way and provide the first bit of rock n roll, a great freak out, although at five minutes they could do with learning to leave us wanting more. And to ensure diversity, a Pogues style stomp from The Hydropaths keeps your arse a-wiggling through track three. We then progress through Buzzcocks style punk, the simple pop of Just Handshakes (We're British), then some gentle folk courtesy of Gary Stewart. Also on the CD is some shoe gazing, some straight rock, a bit of metal from Lasse Brawn. So my first description of a lot of nice pop was contrite, though pop is the main ingredient.

This is a varied and well put together CD, that has made me look into artists I had not heard before, and with the overall quality of the recordings this is a perfect advert not only for the Rock n Roll Circus but the Leeds indie-pop scene as well. Volume 1, and looking forward to Volume 2.



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18 bands associated with this article.

Buffalo Bones

Three piece rock band who drink milk to get strong bones.


Afrobeat / post-punk / synth party bangers explore space and time in skewed fashion!


Punked-up psychedelic indie pop.

Gary Stewart


Saving Time

Energetic Leeds based pop punk band


A group of like minded folk in Leeds who play experimental, semi-improvised cosmic drone punk music.

The Bacchae

NME- "A Dirty, skuzzy garage-rock band whose tracks sound like they were actually recorded in a shed in Detroit by Nick Zinner from Yeah Yeah Yeahs. 'Man' in particular makes us want to neck a bottle of JD, turn up the stereo and shake it like a Polaroid picture."

The Cupid Stunt

Ramshackle nasty-pop

The Rosie Taylor Project

indie alt-country


The Frontier Indie band with more twists and turns than a Haunted Tree The frontier indie band with more twists and turns than a haunted tree

We Sell Seashells

We Sell Seashells are a 5-piece outfit based in Leeds.

The Hydropaths

Raucous rock and roll punk rock with an folk tinge.


Listen to Buffalo Bones.