Geoff Topley

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Before I begin, can I just say I’m utterly hopeless at writing biographies, in all my years of knocking out CD-Rs under my many artistic guises I’ve never cobbled together a decent press release. Whether it be through shy modesty or plain embarrassment at blowing my own trumpet, I struggled when it came to self promotion. Just as well then that I’m not trying to inflict anything apon you here.

As you may have gathered, I’m a musician of sorts from Portadown. I’ve been floating in and around the Northern Irish music scene for over 20 years. (If you really want to know more about this aspect of my life, google me) In fact, it was through sending Dan my music that I came to know about Echoes and Dust.

I listen to a wide range of musical styles but my main interest is in instrumental rock/metal, dreampop/drone and I do have a leaning towards electronic music. My ears are very much tuned into melody, whatever the genre. Though I have a penchant for the extremities of Noise Rock/Hardcore when the mood takes me.

It’s been a lifelong ambition to write music reviews and I’m very grateful to have been given this opportunity.

Articles by Geoff Topley

Norma Jean – Polar Similar

Norma Jean are a new band to me and their seventh album is a sonic storm of energy, vitality, brutality and seriously twisted riffs. If extending the fan base was the intention, consider this a plus one. – By Geoff Topley.

Helms Alee – Stillicide

With every release Helms Alee raise expectations. ‘Stillicide’ is another album to add to the ever expanding ocean of brilliance. – By Geoff Topley

Singers From Berlin – Minor Hooks

The debut e.p. from Belfast’s Singers From Berlin sounds like “Mogwai meets Massive Attack, only shitter than that”. Their words, not mine! Taking Minor Hooks at face value and considering the creator of the e.p. does a pretty good line in self-deprecation, it’s not a bad wee trio of tunes. By Geoff Topley

Gone Is Gone – Gone Is Gone

Featuring members of Mastodon, At the Drive-In and Queens of the Stone Age, Gone Is Gone is an EP occasionally showing much promise, will there be more to come? – By Geoff Topley

Heart – Beautiful Broken

Heart release their 16th album in a career spanning 5 decades. The good news is, Ann Wilson is still as fine a vocalist as ever. – By Geoff Topley

Tomydeepestego – TMDE

Roma’s Tomydeepestego deliver a fine self produced/released post-metal album that fans of Russian Circles and Pelican should enjoy. – By Geoff Topley

Bonny Billy – More Revery

Yet another album from Will Oldham that delivers diamonds and dogshit at the same time. Recommended for completion of a lengthy collection, but ultimately, not that essential. By Geoff Topley.

Bitchin Bajas and Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy – Epic Jammers and Fortunate Little Ditties

Another out-there collaboration from Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy to further extend this prolific artist’s cannon of weird and wonderful. By Geoff Topley

Bossk – Audio Noir

Ashford’s Bossk return with a full length album of magnificent post-metal that is a worthy addition to the growing list of greats in this genre. – By Geoff Topley

Conrad Keely – Original Machines

Conrad Keely once again shows his amazing way with melody throughout this intriguing solo debut album. By Geoff Topley.

Steve Mason – Meet The Humans

Steve Mason returns with solo album #3 and it’s a triumphant nod back to the initial thrills provided by The Beta Band. By Geoff Topley

BRITNEY – BRITN3Y

If fucking heads is BRITNEY’s mission then mission accomplished. This is easily the most challenging album I think I have ever encountered. But yet, I would rather listen to it again than 99.9% of the excruciating shite that currently constitutes the Top 40. – By Geoff Topley

Documenta – Drone Pop #1

The sound they create isn’t new, but it’s a lovely lovely sound and most welcome in this age when traditional guitar sounds are being spurned. By Geoff Topley

Public Enemy – Live From Metropolis Studios

Live from Metropolis Studios contains some excellent pumped up versions of their classics mixed with extended jams. By Geoff Topley

W.A.S.P. – Golgotha

This is a triumphant return and includes some tracks that are sure to become staples in the live set for as long as Blackie Lawless deems it necessary to hit the stage. ‘Golgotha’ is a worthy addition to the back catalogue and a definite confirmation that Lawless is a songwriter and performer deserving of better recognition. – By Geoff Topley

Lou Barlow – Brace the Wave

I’m left a tad underwhelmed, which is unfortunate as this album isn’t bad, you really need to be in the right mood for it. Perhaps it will fit better on an autumn or winter evening, when the open fire is lit. Yeah, that’s it, come back to me in a month or two. By Geoff Topley

Low – Ones and Sixes

Low are beyond special, the music they make is truly enchanting and Ones & Sixes is one of their finest albums. By Geoff Topley

renate/cordate – Growth

Renate/cordate continue to make progress in terms of how they sound, the transition to might and metal is welcome and yet they retain a keen ear for melody and groove. I’m not familiar with any other bands from Finland, but if these guys are doing a fine job of promoting any possible scene there might be. – By Geoff Topley

Chelsea Wolfe – Abyss

Chelsea Wolfe is a prolific artist who widens the hues and textures of her musical palette with every release. With Abyss, she has created something that is unique, original and an absolute certainty to be appearing in a lot of end of year polls. Truly amazing. By Geoff Topley

Giza – Migration

It’s good to hear how a band’s sound widens to incorporate new ideas and Giza have obviously allowed themselves the freedom especially with the guest musicians involved. Worth a listen. – By Geoff Topley

Wages – L’oeil

Shady Chamber still gives me goose bumps when I hear ‘South China Sea’, and those sublime vocal melodies that permeated throughout that e.p. Regrettably, I really have no desire to listen to L’oeil again, and I certainly won’t be extolling the joys of this e.p., because there just aren’t any. By Geoff Topley

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