Ravenbreed: Echoes

Well, what’s to be said?

2021 is always going to be a year that we are dying to get back to the gigs. Yes, the expensive watered-down lager in a plastic cup surrounded by sweaty people has never been so appealing. So when a band – who you respect and admire release a brand new EP it’s always going to be a time of excitement. Especially when you know this very year you will hear it played live. So, all during this time of live music abstinence I blast out the new  EP from Ravenbreed – Echoes.

Firstly, let’s get our ducks in a row. I love Ravenbreed. They have gone through changes in their line-up, yes but after being lucky enough to catch them live  in 2019 let me tell you – they are a band and a half live. With the introduction of Luke Short on vocals Ravenbreed without doubt will go from strength to strength. So the fantastic four – Mikey Watkins, Ross Formosa, Oli Watkins and Luke Short can deliver the readies live on stage.  And finally Echoes the EP has been completed. So can these Welsh wizards deliver the Ravenbreed magic they promise? In a nutshell – yes – and more.

Echoes is a beast of an EP. It starts off with Echoes, a gentle opener that soon opens the door to the sold sounds of a rock classic. Its well crafted verse, leads to a perfectly suited bridge followed by an absolute stonker of a chorus.  I remember being a teenager watching Raw Power and The Power Hour and hearing Can I Play With Madness by Iron Maiden. It’s when I fell in love with rock music. 33 years later Ravenbreed have taken the baton and passed it on. And very securely with that. The time, around 2.40 minutes when we hear Watkin’s solo you have realised 2020 is a forgotten memory and we are back in the rock n roll room. As we hear “Echo down the wishing well”, the magic and power of good solid pounding rock music is truly secured.

The second song Wasted (Over you) is the first single. This song has been listened to me endlessly for two reasons, one – that I love it and secondly that it is played repeatedly on rock radio shows (including mine).  Formosa’s bass hits you square in the face then the song drops quicker than Suarez in a tackle. When I heard this track, a few months ago I had an inkling the Echoes would be a stonker. This was one of my most accurate predictions in 2020.

Pullin’ My Chain follows, an absolute pounder. Yet again, I answer the question many people have asked, “Do they make rock music like they used to?” The answer is Yes. Yes, yes, yes. While Short sings, “Is this who you really wanna be?” Ravenbreed show that this band of brothers are not a flash in the pan. Sterling stuff. If you picture the festivals that Ravenbreed deserve to be on, the crowd currently are euphoric.

The EP concludes with Fires. And what a conclusion it is. In case you hadn’t noticed – Ladies and Gentlemen, Luke Short has entered the building. What a beautiful song indeed. Fires is not a slow song to fill a gap in-between the heavies. Absolutely not. Fires, is a work of art. Fires is a song that of recent years our rock staples are missing. It would be a song that many a mega band would be proud of. A well crafted and a beautiful executed  song that will stand the test of time like so many others have.  Its melancholy graceful tones remind me of Patience by Guns N Roses, What’s Left Of Me by Bon Jovi or Only Woman Bleed by Alice Cooper.

Echoes is in short an absolute fantastic body of work. Roll on 2021. Roll on Ravenbreed.

2021 The year of Inspiration

2021. It’s not a yet a week in and more there’s been more happening than backstage at a Motley Crue concert. There’s this pesky virus which has taken the stage and stole more attention that Gemma Collins and over the pond. America has its issues. Trump has represented that wee kid who doesn’t get his own way so takes his football and the goalposts home, and we have met online the experts of everything through vaccine handouts to immunology to education matters.  However it WILL get better. The experts now have three vaccines, I’ve not seen Bono for a year and I am witnessing the best NFL season I have ever seen.

Over last year I begun writing my book INSPIRE. I felt guilty that I feel positive and hopeful mostly so I asked myself about this. I realised that I have tricks and techniques I have developed over the years -that to me work. I’m not saying I don’t have blips along the way – I was told in October /November that my work wasn’t good enough and it hit me for six. However I re-focused, brought to the front my core-beliefs and re-established my techniques. And with these I’m back. Back walking up every morning at 5am with a spring in my step and happy to be alive in this currently very cold world.

I interviewed people who I find Inspiring from the music world – heroes of mine who have inspired me. Legends such as Ricky Warwick, Nathan James, Myke Gray, Bruce Dickinson, Nic Wastall, Bruce Watson from Big Country as well as amazing individuals whose gifts of music are priceless – Verity White, Imogen Rosemary, Karly Jewell, The Last Great Dreamers, Berty Burton, The Lamleys Dan Byrne, Brad Marr to name but some. I asked them what inspires them and in doing so I got even more motivation.

With all this positivity in my head I decided to take it online. I was frankly annoyed with the moan brigade -how dare Bon Jovi cover a song, how dare they get rid of Dad’s Army, these people or those people need to be shot, what – a couple are walking around with a costa in their hands- string em up!!!

It was time to share our positive stories, our souls. To give our gift of happiness and joy. And so the group Inspire began and the posts have been truly inspirational.

There is more good out there than  bad. The empty can rattles the most and we hear it louder that it all. Inspire the group is changing that.

Join the group, buy (or read for free) the book, listen to music, get some exercise, watch the snow and remember the world is a great place. It’s more Dave Grohl than Donald Trump. It’s more Rustie Lee than Katie Hopkins.




Rock Roll Kindness


BlitZ ‘Fight to Survive’ Album review

Music is memories. I listen to Just Push Play from Aerosmith and I don’t think it’s not as powerful, catchy or good as Pump or Permanent Vacation. I reminiscence about sitting in the Hard Rock Café in Melbourne over a pint of VB listening to it premier. Appetite for Destruction reminds me of me blasting out My Michelle from an amp in my bedroom. Fast forward to August 2040. I’m a 67-year old dude looking back at 20 years ago. I might be thinking of the mask-wearing public, the lack of gigs, the fear and confusion of the pandemic crisis of twenty years ago. But I think I’ll hear the opening of Breaking Out or 99 Ways and think about the time that Blitz’s Fight to Survive hit my earlobes. And by god, I will smile. Because music like this engulfs the politics and the socioeconomics and reminds us why the Earth is a great place to inhabit in 2020.

Kicking off with One In a Million sets the scene perfectly. It hooks you in quicker than Pamela Anderson’s bosom in Barb Wire and doesn’t let you go. The guitar solo forms together seamlessly with its great chorus. Blood Brothers soon enters the fray and buy now you know the next hour or so is going to move quicker than Theresa May in a wheat field. Damage is Done follows Waiting For a Miracle and the pace doesn’t drop. In fact, Damage is Done is a killer of a tune that strongly requires a further crank of the volume knob. This would fit comfortably on any Rock compilation CD and should be included in everyone.

The first single Breaking Out which by now is lodged in my brain as firmly as my love of Discos is followed by the title track of the album Fight To Survive. Party Time holds the tradition of bourbon drinking parties at the pool, birds, booze and bad language then the beautifully crafted Never Surrender soon follows at its rowdy heels. The album’s end track Rock Show finishes on a high, very apt at this time of Covid cancellations but not before 99 Ways and Dance Of Fire– two further outstanding tracks.

BlitZ are the real deal. Let’s get that straight. Welcome to the Rock Show was ace but this album was built on a foundation of hard-graft, relentless work, great attitudes and a mountain of talent. They are a band who bring it live. The attitude is there for all to see but above all, my god they are very spectacular indeed.

Do yourself a massive favour and on August 21st go purchase Fight To Survive. The album artwork itself is awesome but the energy that goes into it from Kevin Simpson, Stuart Corden and Matt Davis is a thing of beauty. Well done boys. Give yourself a massive pat on the back. The world is a better place with BlitZ in it.


Guys, come and join me for my live show.

Yes, I couldn’t make it to your town but I can make it to your living room.


Get your tickets here and now –



With special guests and an hour and a half of stand-up comedy this is gonna be a BLAST.


See you very shortly

No need to dress up. In fact keep these jogger on and get your laughing gear on……

Hello. Hope you are well….

Well, my friends its been a while.

Just a quick note to say hi and hope you are all staying healthy, happy and behaving (this is optional).

My 2021 Tour is fixing up nicely, and from Somerset to Glasgow it’s looking like a helluva tour. I can’t get wait to get on that stage again, the writing process is fun but there’s nothing like making an audience laugh. Together with music festivals, comedy festivals and some very special one off gigs it is indeed something to look forward to.

In fact to try out some new material I am looking at releasing wee 5 minute stand-up shows every Friday. Well, more like sit-down. So I will hopefully see you all this Friday for Episode 1. I’ll be on facebook, twitter, instagram and other social media platforms (but not Tik Tok cause I don’t know what it is)

And thank you for buying The Call and Resurrection Mill – I am very grateful indeed.

Right, my tea’s ready so I’m off.

Big love


Outlaw Orchestra – Pantomine Villians review

In this time of bad news, unemployment, BREXIT and Covid-19 the world needs it’s yin to its yang. And by God the Outlaw Orchestra supply this ray of sunshine fun. The sun is out and as I’m playing Pantomime Villains the lock down is forgotten and instead I feel like I’m being carried through life in a wheelbarrow full of Opal Fruits. Starbursts for the younger generation.

The first time I intro-ed the Outlaw Orchestra on stage I was later bitten in the thigh by an employee of a rum promoter. Two things that night left its mark on me. A fine pair of teeth and the energy, talent, stagecraft, musicianship and fun by this fantastic foursome.

Pete Briley, Ryan Smith, Alex Barter and Dave Roux are what the world needs right now and now is the perfect time for the release of Pantomime Villains their first album.

We all know (if not you should) how brilliant they are live. During their Ramblin’ Man and their Winterstorm set I desperately needed to pee but my eyes were glued to the stage with their rock n roll bluegrass styling and their onstage charm. In fact Eric’s onstage (not offstage) persona , the guitarist from my book The Call is based on Dave. Fact! I think, by memory I did make it to the toilet but didn’t wash my hands as I never wanted to miss a beat of this class act (Note: this was before Covid-19 so acceptable.)

This debut album contains ten songs and begins with Take A Bow, a foot-stomper followed by the released Chicken Fried Snake. Already a live favourite and a great opening sequence of the album. I don’t smoke cigars or drink whiskey on my porch but once Hanging Tree is played I sure want to. Maybe I will just take a trip to the One Stop and sit in a chair outside rocking myself silly.

Whiskey Drinking Liar follows us to the latest single Arabia. “Where’s my camel when I need one?” says it all. In ten years time and believe me in this, in stadiums and festivals around the world, thousand upon thousands of music fans will be singing this at the top of their volumes waving their plastic pint in their hand. I want Arabia to be the theme tune of the Qatar World Cup competition. Come on guys, let’s make this a reality.

The second half of the album continues with the awesomeness of the first half which means unlike Metallica’s Black album they can play it live from start to finish if they want  – and not backwards.

Jumpin’ Jive is quick energetic, dirty and sleazy. In a good way of course. Already you can imagine this live, the grins on the faces of the band, the grass taking a stomping on whatever festival its at.

 In my opinion Voodoo Queen is a real grower.  Certainly not my favourite on the album on first listen, by listen ten questionably my favourite. Either I’m fickle of the Spanish influence is beautiful crafted. Perhaps both.

Send Some Whiskey Home and Too much Willie Nelson completes this brilliant album.

To be honest The Outlaw Orchestra have something about them that could just about satisfy anyone. Even Katie Hopkins would reduce her hatefulness if exposed to these guys. I don’t buy that they don’t fit into a particular genre. They don’t need to. They are The Outlaw Orchestra and their uniqueness along with their writing and playing ability, stagecraft and attitude make them a genre in their own right.

So ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, brothers and sisters. Get Pantomime Villains on May 29th and give your ears a treat. By the 30th I guarantee you’ll turn into a whiskey-drinking, tobacco-smoking, fast-driving, rockabilly, Psycho-billy guitar-yielding, straw dancing bundle of joy.

And when you can next go see them life. And bring Hopkins with you.

Pantomime Villians is out on the 29th May on Voodoo Queen Records.

Check it out right here:






Hello there,
First and foremost I sincerely wish you are all well. I hope you are finding these times bearable and you and your family are keeping healthy. I am working a little when required , heading into school once or twice a week but mainly keeping busy.
Without sounding too much like that woman priest off the telly or the Archbishop of Canterbury I find this time a good time to reflect. Maybe I do too much I think, and when this is over I have no doubt I will go back and hit life at 150 mpoh without taking a breath or smelling the flowers (which I don’t do anyway as I’ve hayfever).
However I am learning something new and rekindling my interest in space missions. Documentaries and books on the Apollo Missions are bringing out my inner-geek. I recommend it!
Also as well as jigsaws (always swear by them) I listen to an album a day. in which kind of passed me by. You know the album that you haven’t got the time to put in the work so yet haven’t reaped the rewards. (In may case, The Getaway by the Red Hot Chili Peppers and The Cosmos Rocks by Queen).
Anyway this message is to say THANK YOU. Thank you for purchasing THE CALL. It’s been lovely for me to get positive reviews and messages about the book. It’s set in my world of rock bands and festivals and is a light-hearted comedy, which hopefully will bring a bit of light relief in this time.
And sorry for my tour cancellation. When it goes ahead I will make it FREE for all punters. I just wanna hang it out with you guys over a beer and a packet of Discos.
Stay in touch.
This will pass.
Rock Roll Kindness
Pete X