Northcote - Northcote (Xtra Mile Recordings) 
Northcote - Northcote

I'm starting to get excited when I get a release and I notice it's from the Xtra Mile Recordings camp. Northcote (aka Matt Goud) has thankfully not letting the team down with this collection of songs that fit perfectly with his fellow artists on the roster. The Canadian opens proceedings with the Springsteen-esque duo of songs 'How Can You Turn Around' and 'When You Cry' that are acoustic driven numbers full of inspiring, sing along moments. New single 'Hope The Good Things Never Die' has a slightly Killers feel about it but without all the Vega glitz and glamour while 'A Thousand Nights' betrays Northcote's early country music leanings before settling in to a good time rock'n'roll rhythm and taking you deep in to the night. But there is subtlety to Northcote too and the Bragg-meets-Costello thrum of 'Burn Right Past Them All' shows off a more tender side that label mates Frank Turner or Crazy Arm would be happy to jam on. Although 'Counting Down The Days' may sound like the title of a Bryan Adams love ballad, Northcote has a more road-trippin' approach to the sentiment.

'Drive Me Home' gets back to the tight, acoustic strumming and idealistic but wistful lyrical content before things take a turn for the smoky and cigarette lighter waving lilt of 'Knock On My Door' which shows off Goud's gravelly voice superbly. In terms of big songs, 'Find Our Own Way' has Killers meets Kings of Leon with a pop melody written all over it so I'd put five bucks on that baby. Then again, I get the feeling that Northcote is on a musical journey that is nothing to do with the destination as the tender and heart rending 'Speak Freely' perfectly exemplifies. Finishing up with 'Walking Home In The Rain', Northcote typifies just what it is that drives him - proper songs with lyrics that mean something set to rock'n'roll tunes that lift your spirit and free up your mind. Goud and the gang are over in Europe for a few dates before Santa comes to visit so get out and see him if you can, I'm sure the live experience will be intimate as well as energising.

Live Dates:

24th November - BiNuu Berlin, Berlin
26th November - Gloria, Cologne
27th November - Batschkapp, Frankfurt
28th November - Strom Linienclub, Munich
30th November - Factory Area2, Milan
2nd December - B72, Vienna
3rd December - Universum, Stuttgart
4th December - JH Kavka, Antwerp
5th December - Joiners, Southampton
6th December - The Garage, London
7th December - Bodega Social Club, Nottingham

8th December - The Cluny, Newcastle