Circuit Sweet Interview, Feature, Reviews

Rad Releases ’15- Surprise Attacks

December 31, 2015

Skye Portman Rad Releases

It’s that time once again, as the countdown to the end of 2015 quickly approaches we take a personal look back on familiar names, features and musicians’ best releases of the past 12 months. Circuit Sweet will be hosting takeovers from the featured artists of the site with their personal top 5 releases of the year.

Continuing our annual end of year tradition we let our favourites take over the site to tell us the records that have made their end of year lists, their favourite events/gigs and what we can look forward to from them next year.

Our final take over of the year comes from our good friends and the most excellent promoters around- Surprise AttacksWorcester based DIY promoters Surprise Attacks are one of the hardest working promoters out there, surprise attacks is a 100% not-for-profit music promoter, record label and vinyl distributor. We love the DIY mentalities and hard working ethos of all at SA! Each show they host is incredible, they truly put on some of the best events we’ve attended and their line ups are always unmissable.  We’ve enjoyed some of our best gigs of the past 12 months in the company of a SA show, they’ve introduced us to some fantastic talent and without these guys on our doorstep we would be lost. We hand over to the men to find out their most loved albums of the past 12 months and to review their year…

Best releases of 2015 in no particular order:

USA Nails – No Pleasure


A powerhouse record of angular & driving noise rock. Saw them live this year & they were astonishing. A great band we’ll be targeting to play Worcester in 2016

Blanck Mass – Dumb Flesh


Benjamin John Power has created a masterpiece with this LP. Sonically rich, layered, deep, uplifting and fierce. One of the best electronic releases of recent years in our opinion. Stand out tracks being Dead Format, Detritus, Double Cross, No Lite. The packaging is beautiful too, with it’s abstract Chris Cunningham style artwork, wax seal & human tooth included in a little card envelope. Essential stuff & a brilliant concept.

Levitation – Meanwhile Gardens


Terry Bickers post-The House of Love band finally released their second album ‘Meanwhile Gardens’ 22 years after they split, but was it worth the wait?
We certainly think so. A superb LP of trademark psychedelia drenched shoegaze / indie which sounds as good and relevant today as it would have 22 years ago when it was indefinitely shelved. An LP full of dynamics, it brings something fresh and new each time we hear it. Stunning.

Standout track – Gardens Overflowing.

Hey Colossus – Radio Static High


A singular orgy of god-like noise. Raw and brutal at times, a beautifully crafted near perfect blend of noise rock and kraut rock with psych / stoner monolithic heaviness.

Kosmischer Laufer – 3.


An amazing concept of lost music for the East German Olympic Program, and the 3rd release in the series. Mesmerising and hypnotic kraut rock, beautiful artwork, just a complete joy to behold in every aspect. We urge you to seek this series out.

Best Surprise Attacks shows of 2015.

2015 has been a great year for us!
We kicked it off with the awesome Petrol Girls / Calm Like A Riot / A Werewolf! / Fight Rosa Fight! show in January which was definitely one of the year’s highlights.

Repo Man in July were absolutely astonishing live, completely blew us away & we’ll definitely be getting them back in 2016.

In August we had a mammoth 5 band math rock bill which was such a killer gig. 100 Onces / Steve Strong / The Broken Oak Duet / Aulos / A Werewolf!……all bands were insanely good that night & The Broken Oak Duet & A Werewolf! Probably played their tightest & best sets for us yet. A great atmosphere too. We’re lucky to have such lovely crowds at SA shows.

As usual Worcester Music Festival was a great show too.

In November we were honoured to host Hey Colossus and one of our best line ups to date, with Vault Of Eagles / Falling Stacks / Mutt supporting. That was special. An absolutely fantastic show which left us buzzing for days.

Other honourable mentions go to Sly & The Family Drone who nearly shook the plaster from the ceiling, and our recent Christmas show with the amazing underground hip hop collective Population 7, dark electronic nutcases Rosebud, brand new raw funk & soul trio Desert Boots and of course Abel Gray, an incredible underground hip hop talent and one we’ll be watching in 2016.

Best shows we’ve seen in 2015.

We’ve seen a stack of incredible performances, but the ones that stand out are:
USA Nails at ArcTanGent
Chaos UK at Rebellion Festival
Cousin at ArcTanGent
Blanck Mass at ATP Festival
Repo Man at Surprise Attacks
Hey Colossus at Surprise Attacks
Vessels at ArcTanGent
Circle / Hey Colossus / Opium Lord at The Supersonic warm up show at Hare & Hounds Birmingham.

Plans for 2016.

We have some exciting shows in the pipeline which will be announced very soon.
Generally our plans are to continue as we have been and believe in the power of DIY punk ethics, to keep pushing boundaries, stay progressive and never stay still – for the love of punk, not profit.

We’d like to thank all the bands and people who have supported Surprise Attacks so far. Let’s make 2016 another great year. X


A huge thank you as ever to Surprise Attacks for all their hard work and continuing to bring excellent music to town! We can’t wait to see what 2016 brings.


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