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While 2013 hasn’t particularly been a year dominated by rock music, there are two bands who have produced downright dirty, stomping rock ‘n’ roll records that are already appearing at the top end of ‘Best of 2013’ lists: Arctic Monkeys and Queens of The Stone Age. Coincidentally, one of our hot tips for 2014, Brighton duo Royal Blood, saw their profile boosted when Arctic Monkeys’ drummer Matt Helders wore a homemade Royal Blood t-shirt during the band’s headlining Glastonbury set this summer. While the exposure has certainly helped, Royal Blood really only need to rely upon letting their music do the talking, and certainly have the potential to be up their with the aforementioned rock behemoths.

First tipped by us back in April, the Royal Blood hype really kicked off in November with the release of their debut single Out of The Black. With Michael Kerr on bass and vocals and Ben Thatcher on drums, comparisons to The White Stripes have been inevitable and wholly deserved. Embracing Jack and Meg’s successful formula to great effect, Royal Blood’s gritty blues-infused sound is more Deep South of America than Southern coast of England. It never ceases to amaze how just two people can make such a wonderful racket – just look no further than the pummelling drums which open ‘Out of The Black’, before the track thunders into a White Stripes-esque angular stomp, complete with Jack White style sleazy snarling vocals in the chorus. B-Side Come On Over is equally as impressive, drawing comparisons to early Muse, The Black Keys and even rock Gods Led Zeppelin and sizzling with the same scuzzy desert swagger employed by The Arctic Monkeys of late.

2014 is no doubt the year Royal Blood will step out of the black and into the spotlight, with the boys already confirmed to support The Arctic Monkeys at their Finsbury Park gigs in May. They’ll also be travelling to the USA to play SXSW and are likely to be a prominent fixture on the European festival circuit. With only two tracks available online so far, we’re already clamouring to hear more of Royal Blood’s blistering contemporary rock riffs.

Words by Linsey Teggert

 Originally posted on The Tipping Point on April 18th

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