Various Artists - On The Bone: Compilation One

Christopher Low 31/01/2007

Just when you thought Leeds was maybe a little full of indie labels/bands (which they seem to have ten to a penny) and the steam engine had finally stopped at its destination, this little gem pounds over the hill. Is it a monster? On The Bone Records (formerly Leeds on The Bone) has appeared in the crowd of indie/schmindie labels and has a comfortable looking position on the front row.

Leeds shining and hardworking promoters James Brown and Tom Goodhand have been running live homemade music events together for over a year now in Leeds where they have tip topped venues to the max with the likes of This Et Al, The Lodger, Wild Beasts etc, and have now decided to dip feet into the deep sea of record labels. There first release is a compilation CD of the finest acts to play there continuing nights originally titled "On The Bone - Compilation One".

With a healthy array of thorough bred acts to choose from we break the bones with the mighty Downdime track 'easy go easy gone' which wrestles speeding synth, stabbing guitars and a high pitched chorus similar to the likes of Placebo but with added pop grime. Indie slow-mo rockers Samsa produce beautiful goods with 'the fight', a haunted guitar sound and a very memorable voice and melody. Newcomers to Leeds 'Mother Vulpine' look set to spin off into the stratosphere with success if this tune is anything to go buy with 'We'll be detectives for the day' which provides beaten out menacing riff rock with well constructed layers and warming vocals (word on the grape vine is a single is on its way with the bone team). This Et Al knock of anyone's socks with the huge 'Free Adam Innocent', this stand out track crashes around with a robust n' catchy chorus and is also ladled with trademark guitar/vocal Et Al beauty. Surely success is imminent here. Wild Beasts stand alone in the woods of difference and male screeching with the track Boom and its catchy, jazzy undertones. Its not all bands here for the recipient though mind. Acoustic voyeurs Fran Rodgers and Benjamin Wetherill make two incredibly noticeable appearances' at other ends of the disc which produce marker points for a rest for the listener from the din of acts such as That Fucking Tank who riff out with awesome choppy rock noise and the filthy yet very much likeable It Takes Bridges.

I'm surprised by this for a first release for a another young baby of a label in Leeds as stigma seems to already have been built up and the goods provided are of exceptional quality. I could not find a single dull moment in this record. You'll even find some dark, difficult listening, electro smatterings from worriedaboutsatan's 'the butterfly effect' (which is still stuck in my head) proving this label have no fear of what's hot and what's not.

From the outset of the first play of this compilation you can see it's blindingly obvious that this is an important piece of admirable and loving work for a CD which could easily be another stab at making nothing but another tiny mark in the Leeds hall of fame. With 19 tracks of which 14 are unreleased and a price tag of 4.99 I cant see why anyone would want to miss this. Just 500 have been made so I'm keying in my debit card details now to exchange my promotional copy for a soon to be rare shop copy.