Music ReviewsRock

EP Review: Cease and Desist by Manilow


With a cover depicting a jet-set yacht, you’d be forgiven for thinking this record was the work of a cheesy 1980’s band. Also, the name, Manilow suggests an aging MOR crooner with coiffured hair. Rest easy dear reader. “Cease and Desist” (released 10th, October 2014) is pure post-punk energy and a joy to behold.

Twitchy, with intelligent lyrics and enough rock sensibility to satisfy the head bangers, Manilow channel the best that British punk could ever provide on this debut EP. This three-piece from South London is a hurricane with a brain – a beguiling combination.

“Missing” bursts into your eardrums with fervent rock guitar. Its tight therapeutic viciousness is infectious, and its Sex Pistols-like attack will make you want to pogo all the way round your living room. “Law Here” is slower, looser and, whilst it drips with paranoia, is strangely uplifting. At one minute and fifty-seven seconds, “Control Issue” is true to its punk roots – frantic and over very quickly. The Ramones are smiling down. Frenetic punk-rock guitar and raw glorious energy. “Vitamins” is a mix of psychedelic rock guitar and punk – pleasing but it doesn’t have the hooks that stick in your brain like the previous three.

Like Route One in football, Manilow has a straight arrow approach. As lead vocalist, guitarist and lyricist, Dean Moston, explains “We’re not into pastiche. Our songs are about real life; there’s no redemption stories, no cute resolutions. We just write and play the stuff we are going through”.

This is a turn it up to 11 situation. I hope you have thick walls or, better still, no neighbours.


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Anne Iredale

Anne is an experienced writer, published poet and proofreader from the UK. She is passionate about promoting new music whilst paying tribute to past greats. Her other passions are for films, books and art plus walking in the woods or on the beach.