THE FLUX MACHINE TELL ALL ABOUT EARLY INFLUENCES & NEW MUSIC 32

Having earned themselves an army of fans thanks to their impressive cover of Billy Idol’s “Rebel Yell”, The Flux Machine, an alt-rock band from New York, most certainly know what it takes to get noticed in an ever-competitive music world.

On the back of a hugely successful year, vocalist Luis Accorsi kindly agreed to write the newest of our guest blogs to spill the beans on the music genres that impacted his life and plans for a new record.

“All my influences were bad. Nothing good went into raising me. Then rock music came along and that was the whammy I needed to recognize that everyone has a voice, including some god forsaken kid growing up in Venezuela.

As far as music, it was my brother’s fossil rock/dinosaur vinyls, until I was infected by punk.

Now The Flux Machine is a morphing of years of experience combined with fresh, powerful progressions courtesy of Raphael Sepulveda (band producer) and Asher Zeitschik, our new guitarist and songwriter. Honestly the highest high you can achieve. One of the highlights of this year for us was opening for Michale Graves, singer of The Misfits during the 90’s. 2016 has been really good to us. 

We have big plans for the future and we’re currently working on a brand new album brimming with attitude and verve.”

For more information on the band, visit their website or give their page a like on Facebook.

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REVIEW: MAROON 5 – RED PILL BLUES 13

As one of the few (at least few I can name) bands of the modern age to have a career lasting more than a decade, Maroon 5 were once the dominant force in pop-rock charts around the world and now, they’re back to try and reassert said dominance with their sixth album Red Pill Blues.

There’s a glint of humour to Levine’s voice on opening number “Best 4 U” which makes the vocal seemingly shimmer on a track that’s as catchy as it is lyrically simplistic – (very). Follow up “What Lovers Do” featuring SZA, fares batter, upping the tempo somewhat and bringing back that almost infamous Levine falsetto that made the band so noteworthy back in their heyday.

“Wait” adds an R’n’B vibe to proceedings, something which doesn’t quite fit with the bands’ usual sound, but they should be commended for experimenting at a time when many of their artistic counterparts refuse to do so. “Lips On You” slows things right down, which is a shame as it disrupts the albums’ rhythm up to this point, however it does allow Levine’s vocal to take centre stage without distraction caused by guitars and a thumping drum beat. Nevertheless, it is the album’s weak point thus far.

“Bet My Heart” picks things up somewhat, certainly in terms of the tempo, although the track is far from anything special, while Julia Michaels’ guest vocal on “Help Me Out” is the best thing about the track and makes the song worthy of repeat listens and of its status as a current single. “Who I Am” meanwhile has a toe-tapping rhythm which is enjoyable enough, but its lyrically basic enough to have been written by a pre-teen.

A$AP Rocky’s appearance on “Whiskey” doesn’t fit with Maroon 5’s style or the album they’re unveiling to those who listen to it and so his vocal talent is lost among lyrics that make little to no sense such as “she kissed me like a whiskey.” That part of the song is memorable, but sadly for all the wrong reasons. “Girls Like You” is only marginally better, helped by its considerable club feel which “Closure” attempts to recreate, but it’s “Denim Jacket” that returns the album to somewhat stronger and more stable ground, and brings back Levine’s (much missed at this point) falsetto, before “Visions” injects a rather reggae twist to proceedings, although, despite being so different to anything else featured so far, works rather well.

It’s a shame therefore that “Plastic Rose” undoes most of the hard work delivered by its two predecessors, but the ‘mistake’ is rectified somewhat by the arrival of 2016 ‘s lead single “Don’t Wanna Know”, featuring Kendrick Lamar, although the song would work perfectly well without his input.

Closing with “Cold” which features Future, the collection ends on a surprisingly positive note as the instrumentation and vocal blend impressively well and while the album is no modern-day classic a la Songs About Jane, and is certainly more experimental, notably thanks to Levine and THAT vocal ability, Red Pill Blues certainly won’t see Maroon 5 fade into obscurity any time soon.

YOUR GUIDE TO UPCOMING TV APPEARANCES 14

Here is your guide to the upcoming TV appearances, from X Factor to Strictly, awards show to chat shows.

CELEBRITY JUICE – THURSDAY 16 NOVEMBER 2017
Keith Lemon hosts the final helping of Celebrity Juice fun this series as regulars Fearne, Holly and Gino welcome singer Emeli Sande, First Dates star Fred Sirieix and funnyman Brian Conley to their teams.

CHILDREN IN NEED 2017 – FRIDAY 17 NOVEMBER 2017
The BBC Children In Need Appeal Show is back with an all-star line-up of presenters as Tess Daly, Graham Norton, Mel Giedroyc, Ade Adepitan, Rochelle and Marvin Humes guide viewers through a night of dazzling entertainment and aim to raise millions of pounds for BBC Children In Need.

The show will feature performances and treats from some of the nation’s most loved stars. Highlights include the cast of EastEnders revealing hidden talents as they sing their way round The Square in a show-stopping musical medley.

Six well-loved Blue Peter presenters from the past 60 years will enter the glitz and glamour of the ballroom, as Mark Curry, Diane-Louise Jordan, Anthea Turner, Tim Vincent, Konnie Huq and Radzi Chinyanganya join forces with the Strictly professional dancers in a bid to win the Pudsey Glitter Ball trophy for BBC Children In Need.

The Queen Of Mean Anne Robinson returns for a Special Edition of the Weakest Link for Children In Need. Seven brave celebrities work as a team and attempt to answer a series of general knowledge questions to win up to £15,000 for the charity. However, only one can win, six will leave with nothing as round by round their teammates vote them the weakest link.

In the studio, the presenters of Countryfile swap their welly boots for cowboy boots in an unmissable performance and Joanna Lumley will present the Sir Terry Wogan Fundraiser Of The Year. The Children’s Choir perform live in unison across the nation and some deserving children get the surprise of their life!

Straight from London’s West End the cast of Annie – featuring Strictly’s very own Craig Revel Horwood as Miss Hannigan – will take the stage, and three of Theatre-land’s fabulous leading ladies, Amber Riley from Dreamgirls, Beverley Knight from The Bodyguard and Cassidy Janson from Beautiful: The Carole King Musical will dazzle us with a very special performance.

Superstar Rita Ora will join the fun in the studio as will pop band The Vamps and US star Jason Derulo. More exciting content will be announced in the coming days.

Along the way, appeal films will feature some of the children and young people whose lives have been changed through the support of BBC Children In Need, and the people who work tirelessly to help them.

THE JONATHAN ROSS SHOW – SATURDAY 18 NOVEMBER 2017
In the last edition of the current series, Jonathan Ross chats to comedy star Peter Kay, Hollywood star Luke Evans and award-winning actress and singer Sheridan Smith.

MICHAEL McINTYRE’S BIG SHOW – SATURDAY 18 NOVEMBER 2017
Bafta award-winner Michael McIntyre returns with the third series of his BBC One family entertainment show.

Featuring music from chart sensation Emeli Sandé and rock legends Stereophonics, unmissable new comedy material from Michael himself and Strictly hero Ed Balls plays Celebrity Send To All.

THE CHASE CELEBRITY SPECIAL – SUNDAY 19 NOVEMBER 2017
Tonight, Mark Billingham, Aldo Zilli, Lucy Pargeter and Joey Essex take on the challenge hoping to win thousands of pounds for their charities

STRICTLY COME DANCING BLACKPOOL RESULTS – SUNDAY 19 NOVEMBER 2017
There will be a magnificent group performance from our celebrities and professional dancers on the grandest scale; and if that wasn’t enough, we will be treated to two musical acts from vocal powerhouses Michael Ball and Alfie Boe and Tears For Fears, who will each perform a classic song.

SOUNDS LIKE FRIDAY NIGHT – FRIDAY 24 NOVEMBER 2017
Tonight’s star co-host is Craig David.

The Ivor Novello and MOBO Award winner will be chatting about what he’s been up to, including a forthcoming album. Along with his co-hosting duties and singing live in the studio, Craig will be introducing the performances from The Killers and British singer-songwriter, Anne-Marie.

THE GRAHAM NORTON SHOW – FRIDAY 24 NOVEMBER 2017
Making his first appearance on the show, Oscar-winning film-maker and actor Mel Gibson joins Graham. Plus hilarious star of Anchorman Will Ferrell; actor and producer Mark Wahlberg; and multi-award-winning stage and screen star John Lithgow. With music from singer-songwriter Kesha, who performs Learn To Let Go.

MICHAEL McINTYRE’S BIG SHOW – SATURDAY 25 NOVEMBER 2017
Albert Square favourite Danny Dyer hands over his phone in celebrity Send To All, and there’s a very special appearance from Gary Barlow.

Plus there’s music from Grammy Award winners Clean Bandit and stand-up comedy from Russell Kane.

STRICTLY COME DANCING RESULTS – SUNDAY 26 NOVEMBER 2017
Amongst all of the sequins and sparkle, American superstar Kelly Clarkson will be performing

THE CHASE CELEBRITY SPECIAL – SUNDAY 26 NOVEMBER 2017
One Chaser is all that stands between actor Patrick Baladi, cyclist Vicky Williamson, TV legend John Craven and comedian/actor Kevin Eldon and thousands of pounds for their chosen charities.

THE GRAHAM NORTON SHOW – FRIDAY 1 DECEMBER 2017
Together on Graham’s sofa: legendary rock star Sir Elton John; actor and writer Stephen Fry; Oscar-nominated actress Carey Mulligan; pop star Robbie Williams; and singer-songwriter Pink, who performs What About Us.

STRICTLY COME DANCING – SUNDAY 3 DECEMBER 2017
There will be a spectacular music performance from the Leading Ladies, Beverley Knight, Amber Riley and Cassidy Janson