“Dear Joe,

This is probably not the correct place for a death metal band, but I just love to be irrational from time to time…”

So began the email from Bram, the guitarist from Skeletor, a Dutch death metal band. The Dutch speak simply wonderful English.

Happily for all of us, Bram couldn’t be more wrong. It’s true that Skeletor is the first death metal band to appear on ANBAD since the entertainingly disgusting Coprophagia a couple of years ago, but that doesn’t mean that ANBAD is death-metal-phobic.

It’s just that death metal is the kind of thing that most people only listen to every few years. When you do choose to listen though, remember to ensure that Skeletor are your go-to death metal band.

Skeletor //  Deathmarch

There is so much that I love about death metal, that I don’t really know where to start. Part of it is the sub-genre itself: ‘metal just isn’t gloomy enough’, someone must have thought, ‘I’m going to introduce mortality into the equation.’ This is the same reasoning that brought us Epic Doom Metal, by the way – an altogether more ridiculous brand of noise.

Simply put though, death metal sounds like a whole ton of fun: alternately howling and chugga-chugga guitars, pulverising drumming, and vocals that sound as if sung by the results of a human-wolf gene-splicing experiment gone wrong.

Skeletor might not make music that you’d admit to liking, or have even considered liking, but they are as entertaining as hell. Prove yourself wrong.

>Today’s New Band – Frozen Bears

When I typed Today’s New Band’s name into Google, one of the search results was a question on from an anonymous poster – “Can a bear’s tail break when frozen?” If the internet has proven anything, it’s that humanity’s capacity for mindlessness can always find a new, stupider low.

Assuming if you’re not kept awake at night by this kind of idiotic query, you’ll love Frozen Bears. Even if you are now pondering the brittle nature of massive mammals’ tails, try to distract your mind momentarily from such tribulations with Frozen Bears’ garage-psyche-crunch-rock punch to the face that is all pleasure and no pain.

Like Tuesday’s new band, Nutrition On Tape (see below), they grab at all the best sounds from years ago, churn them up and cough out songs that laugh at the past and greedily eye the future. The bullish insistence of They Don’t Need You will reach up your trouser leg and grab your attention with delicious echo-stretched guitar howls, riffs from a dark, warm place and drums that fall apart.

Speaking of which, The Hoax features a drumbeat that is so broken that an entirely separate rhythm develops. Perfectly, just as your rattled mind begins to appreciate this, another monster riff begins, and it’s all you can do to hold on for the ride.

Dirty, chewy and grimy, Frozen Bears are here to shake you awake with thrills of their own crafting. If you were wondering, the answer given to the earlier question was: “If its cold enough anything can break.” And thus the world can now get back to whatever mundane business it was doing before such wild theories were pondered. So listen here!

>Today’s New Band – The Counterpoint

>Have you ever watched a group of Spanish men cook? It’s a carefully plotted exercise, which can be broken down as follows: 50% lounging, chatting and keeping generally relaxed to the point of muscle deterioration, 22% talking lecherously about women, 2% fussing with a knife and 1% cooking. I partook in this culinary ritual recently, and thoroughly enjoyed it – though it did alter any preconceptions I had of a ‘quick snack’, which is how it was advertised to me.

I don’t know what frame of mind one would be in when writing a song titled Vaginal Tendancies, but I imagine a similar laissez-faire spirit endures. Which makes Today’s New Band, The Counterpoint, are, at the very least, a curiosity.

Imagine a grunge cod-funk lounge band and you’re only part of the way there. Guitars bandsaw and grunt in small doses, but leave plenty of room for finger snappin’ and foot tappin’.

I may be wrong – I hope I’m not – but I’m sure that one of their lyrics runs, “You know you’re looking so nice/ Let me make up your latte – you know I do it just right,” sentiments which make the mind boggle and the heart weep. Song The Bandit utilises the deepest, gruntiest basso voice, and is all the better for its ridiculousness.

The Counterpoint make music that’ll make you scrawl “Pearl Jam 4 Eva” on your cashmere cardigan. Smoooooth – and rough. I’m not sure if they’re for real or not, and don’t care either. Listen here!

>Today’s New Band – Leroy McQueen & The Gussets

>I said that Yesterday’s New Band, Liechtenstein (see below), ‘owes a little to Jesus and Mary Chain‘; this wasn’t a criticism, but I suppose it could be interpreted as such. A large proportion of bands are eager to distance themselves, sonically, from the past, as if this in itself is innovation. It isn’t – and it often results in bands that might well tick the ‘new’ box, but is a million miles from the one marked ‘fun’.

Grabbing a bunch of sounds or attitudes or ideas from the past isn’t to be frowned upon. It makes sense if you want to have a good time, all the time. Today’s New Band, Leroy McQueen & The Gussets has a great name and a sound you’ll know and feel happy slipping into, like an old pair of slippers.

Leroy McQueen & The Gussets make a land grab for the grimy, punchy fuzz-blizzard of The MC5 and Johnny Thunders and the Heartbreakers, and then proceeds to wring as much enjoyment out of the straight-into-the vein excitement as possible. Boomtown City is so heavy with crunchy sound that it may collapse in on itself and form a rock ‘n’ roll black hole.

It’s not ‘new’ – even Shakespeare wrote lyrics about wanting to go out and party all night – but it doesn’t need to be. It’s a big, friendly slap in the face from a leather-coated, tobacco-and-booze-smelling hand, and I’ll find it hard to believe if you don’t want to go out all night long after listening to it. RAWK! Listen here!

>Today’s New Band – Baby Long Legs PLUS! U2-mageddon!

>Hooray! U2 have got a new single out! It’s so great that I’m going to buy the album on the day it comes out! They totally rock, and Boneo is, like, a genuine rock star, yeah?

OK – that bit was for all the estate agents who were reading A New Band A Day by mistake. It’s safe to assume that they’ve jumped into their Audi TTs and are heading off to their local record store* to wait to buy a copy. Anyway, guess what? The new single sucks and blows at the same time. Steel yourself and listen to it here. (Done? Feeling dirty? Here’s something brilliant to compensate.)

*the supermarket

So, in yet another land-grab of public consciousness, U2 have managed to rip off not only Subterranean Homesick Blues by His Bobliness but also (say it ain’t so!) Dirty Boots by Sonic Freaking Youth. The horror, the horror.

Before, they’d at least stuck to the tried-and-tested routine of just using delay pedals, being dreadfully bland and knuckle-bitingly over-earnest. But here, in their most audacious, crafty, awful move yet, they’ve gone for the credible jugular.

Fortunately, for those of us who can actually hear normally, it’s obviously a clunker of epic proportions. Expect to hear it on drab local radio, everywhere soon. Don’t expect to hear Today’s New Band, Baby Long Legs, on AOR FM any time soon, because life just isn’t fair like that.

Just like Sweden (see yesterday’s new band), Sheffield seems to be squeezing out good new bands, one after the other, like sausages from a machine. Except that Baby Long Legs are filled with quality ingredients, with no pig anus, eyelid or ear in sight.

Floor Turtle, mixes the hitherto unexplored combination of a huge – no, epic – howling riff and the swanny whistle to create a touching song about the shelliest of reptiles. There are too few songs about turtles, and this goes some of the way to redress the balance.

Today, the only experience most people have of the true, life-affirming squeal of a rock solo is while playing Guitar Hero on the Xbox. Hopefully No-One’s Around will have those pasty teenage boys dispatching their plastic guitar-shaped controllers in favour of the real thing, combining bitchin’ guitar wandering with disconcertingly familiar musings on love’s quirks to be a suspiciously true-sounding love song.

Baby Long Legs remind us that all of the world’s mystery, joys and – GASP! – even life itself are contained in one shuddering Les Paul screech. That their songs are throwaway, catchy and straight faced only seals the deal. Supremely fun, serious and silly all at once. Rock out here!