February 2015



DPRP Review

November  2014






Mike Hyder – Craftsman

Accompanied by Dominic Lash playing bass, David Hard on moog and Selina Organ and John Halliday on drums, the main man from British Progressive Rockers The Treat has assembled four songs which make up “Craftsman”. In the nature of Progressive Rock, you don’t need to feel short-changed just because it contains merely four songs. Two of the tracks clear 10 minute durations while the other two sit snugly just under nine minutes in length.

Vocally, Hyder projects the honesty and sincerity of Pink Floyd as he lays out his lyrical expertise. The opening song wears the coat of the title track and with this responsibility makes sense as the first track. The chorus flows with the words “I’m just a craftsman, playing for you tonight.” Humble salutations and acquaintances made, our listening journey continues in to “The Rock”.

Fundamentally this album had to be a solo affair as Hyder adorns the cover artwork standing in a countrified environment with his trusty guitar, and, for all intents and purposes, accommodates the role of craftsman. He tackles lead and backing vocals in conjunction with all electric and acoustic guitars, plus a Dobro lap steel slide guitar and some Mellotron and Hammond keys for good measure.   

What is so instantly appealing about this collection is the overall heartbeat and how effortless Hyder makes the proceedings sound. You forget the length of the music as it strolls, runs and occasionally gallops depending on what works the best. “The Rock” at its core is reflective and philosophical thanks to a wee break in Wales. Hyder explains there was a lot of inspiration discovered in this location near the sea.

Embracing the principle of re-evaluating one’s life and celebrating the concept of getting away from the daily mundane stresses and challenges, Hyder presents the magical world of “Eden”. The last time I heard vocals in the way Hyder lays them out, was during a binge on Damien Youth who seemed influenced heavily by Donovan. This style of vocal delivery is reminiscent of the 60s in general, and amongst these four tracks works really well.

“The Organisation” closes the “Craftsman” and provides a journey which lasts over 19 minutes. Telling the tale of a truly bad experience with the educational service provided in the United Kingdom known as the Open University, musically the goal was to capture the ups and downs of his personal encounter which is reiterated by incorporating expletives.

Hyder provides an edgier vocal delivery at this stage and hopefully in the aftermath of such a negative time using their service and finding it a suitable platform as a muse, can now breathe a sigh of relief that it is behind him. Perhaps this song has been cathartic and his emotional well-being is much better for it?

Personally, I’m very pleased he reached out to me and sent me a copy of this album. It is a wonderful ride which gets better with each spin. When I first played it, the cohesive qualities and the pace were easy on the ear and as you play it again and again, it becomes a friend. This is Progressive Rock with a heart and a keen eye on humanity, not technical excellence or showmanship. It is Progressive Rock with a sincere outlook and an honest presentation.

Highly recommended for fans of Progressive Rock, Pink Floyd and sunny afternoons where the day is still and calm.



Fourth Album











Lepers and Deities by The Treat

December 29, 2012
by Ric Albano

Lepers and Deities is the fourth album by the British trio, The Treat. It is the type of album that not only gets more interesting as it goes along, but is also better with each listen, which is the true mark of a great album. Released this past October (2012), the album was produced by Mike Hyder, the group’s vocalist, guitarist, and chief songwriter. The band presents a very authentic and original sound, with the song formulas arranged much in the same fashion as David Bowie’s Ziggy Stardust album – a core acoustic guitar rhythm, dynamic bass, and solid rock drums topped off by strategic sonic overdubs. However, The Treat take this to a new level due to their very own resident “Brian Jones” in the form of multi-instrumentalist David Hart who adds flute, accordion, clarinet, vibraphone, and various percussive instruments along with his drumming duties.

The band was formed by Hyder in 2001 as a classic rock “power trio” and, after a few years of extensively touring the UK, they released their debut album in 2003 called In Technicolor. Bassist Dom Lash joined the group in 2004 and they spent the next several years extensively writing, arranging, rehearsing a crop of new songs, some of which were the earliest incarnations for this album but most ending up on their breakthrough second album, Phonography, and their highly ambitious double album, Audio Verite/Deceptive Blends ,in 2008 and 2009 respectively. These albums took their core classic rock sound and added elements of prog rock, psychedelia, folk, jazz, and blues.

Lepers and Deities is a bit deceiving at first glance and listen. First there is the album cover, which along with the band’s name conjures up visions of Halloween and makes one wonder if this is some occult-championing group. Then there is the opening song “Trust”, one of the heavier songs which may lead a new listener to draw the wrong initial conclusions about the band’s sound. Hyder’s vocals are unique and takes a few listens to tune into, and this first song is not his strongest performance vocally. However, the exquisite production quality is evident immediately and even though “Trust” may be the weakest track on the album, there is enough there to keep you interested. The moody and melancholy anthem “Sparkle” is the closest to a traditional “love song” on the album and the first to feature interesting tidbits like flute by Hart and Hammond organ by guest Jeff Leach.

The album truly comes alive with the title song, “Lepers and Deities”, which showcases the band’s full range in both composition and sonic spectrum. Here Hyder’s vocals have a sense of desperation that fits the mood perfectly, and his great production technique where the sound alternates between acoustic guitar chimes and a full arrangement. It is complete with a vocal chorus, a mellotron, and a violin by Flora Curzon with a very dark Mexican mariachi vibe. Beyond that, everything is arranged perfectly, especially the acoustic rhythm and Lash’s moody bass.

In the multi-page CD insert, the songs lyrics are presented alternately as “L’s” (Lepers) and “D’s” (Deities), and there is a thematic ebb-and-flow as the album progresses. “Bougainvillaeas In the Sand” (a ‘D’) builds throughout with exotic instruments by Hart, especially the vibraphone flavouring through the bridge and last verse. “Headcase Baby” (an ‘L’) is cynical but light and features a great Vox continental organ part by Leach, above a strong Who-influenced rock arrangement. Later in the album, the songs take on a distinct 1960s style. “The Falcon and the Iron Rain” is a musical melodic odyssey which, aside from the vocals, feels a bit like the better Van Morrison material. “SPT” (“Strangers Passing Through”) is perhaps the deepest song on this album, with the acoustic strumming nicely fused with backing organ and well-placed, layered guitars along with profound lyrics;

I’m looking at people that I thought I knew, but it seems they were strangers just passing through…”

“Little Treasures” is a picked acoustic song with upbeat rhythm and a strong accordion presence, first as backing during the verses then in total as the featured solo. This also features trumpet and flugelhorn by Lloyd Payne. “My Old School” shows that the band isn’t all serious and deep, with a very glam, Mott-the-Hoople style tune with frank and obscene lyrics. Hyder shines throughout this song with a good lead guitar topping off the near-Scottish folk with a heavy rock backing. The album closes strong with “Valerie”, which contains interesting passages that contrast between intro and fills consisting of acoustic accented perfectly sync-ed xylophone and flute, and the upbeat Kinks-like pop of the main verse-chorus sequence.

Although all three musicians in THE TREAT have their own individual musical identities, they ‘meet in the middle’ when working on arrangements of the songs that Mike writes for the band. Both Mike & Dom have a love of King Crimson. Dave & Mike have been to see Jethro Tull in concert together, and have an appreciation of Yes. Dom tends to veer more in a jazzy direction, with Dave showing a greater appreciation of folk styles. Mike likes both jazz & folk, with a healthy love of blues.

Lepers and Deities is already the fastest selling album the band has released and has received glowing reviews from other publications. If you like original and interesting art-rock, this is definitely one to check out.

Posted in: Features, Reviews.
2000s Artist · 2010s Artist · 2012 Albums · 2012 Reviews · The Treat



The Treat - Lepers & Deities

Author Tonny Larsen

Mon 17 Dec 2012

Rating: 3.5/ 5

Year of Release : 2012

Label : Rockular Recordings

Total Time : 42.36

Genre : Rock/60’s Rock

This album is quite an ear opener. The first track "Trust" sounds uncannily like The Small Faces (Ogden´s Nut Gone-period) in both music and vocal! Other tracks sound like the Who (track 5), Humble Pie!! Great stuff IMHO!

But there are also tracks with a very personal touch from this fine trio, and even those have an aura of 60´s music about them, which I find very lovely!

Now it is not as such copy-music. It sounds to me like main writer and indeed main figure Michael Hyder (Composer, lead vocals, guitars of all sorts, keyboards, mellotron etc.) really and truly has those musical ideas and follows true on his original ideas here!!

I have heard this album quite a few times now (and that is an understatement) and for every spin, I’ve enjoyed it more! This is NOT a prog album, but it is a very strong Rock/60’s style Rock album. So, if like me, you love that type of music, then you will surely enjoy this outing a lot!

The CD includes a fine booklet, with a 60’s influenced design. Even the pictures of these fine musicians have a haze of psychedelia and flower power about them.

Don't expect broadsides of guitar solos or airy keyboard sequences. What you get here is pure classic old school rock "like the don't make ém anymore", which in my book is great. I’ve come to love this album and it will most certainly visit my CD player often!

If you liked the above statements and love classic rock, then you MUST try this. You know what is always a sign of a great album? The tracks you didn't like on a first listen, which then grow on you, ending up being some of your favourites!! This is one such album.

GO, BUY! I promise you are in for a Treat!!!


Third Album


'Entertaining, enthralling and effervescent’ - Classic rock presents PROG

‘An explosion of talent’ - The Big Takeover

‘It’s impossible to convey the scale and ambition of this album in a review. Suffice to say The Treat pull off a huge undertaking with aplomb’

- Classic Rock

‘The band's third work is undeniably their best so far. This is art rock wandering through genres, while at the same time trying to be as accessible as possible’ - Metal Perspective

‘This sprawling collection has some really good stuff’ - Rock’n’Reel

‘The musicianship, instrumentation and package as a whole is tremendous’ - Classic Rock Society

‘Oxford's finest are back and they have blown the expectations out of the water’ - Room 13

‘Enough variety and quality to justify a long and happy musical relationship’ - Terrascope

'Each track introduces something new and colourful. The album is quirky, undeniably eclectic, creative, idiosyncratic, indulgent, brave, experimental, and yes, ambitious' - Blog Critics

Audio Verite/Deceptive Blends feels like the spiritual successor to The Beatles Abbey Road. A tasty Treat, indeed - Progression

May/June 2012

Jan/Feb 2012



Full Reviews Below




Terrascope Online  

= June 2009 =

On “Audio Verite/Deceptive Bends” their latest, double CD, The Treat harken back to the glory days of vinyl by pretending there are four sides, the music split into “Rock”, “Acoustic”, “Electric” and “Experiment”. Starting with Rock, the band punch their way out of the speakers with the heavy psych-pop of “This is the One”, a statement of intent built over a modish guitar riff and a solid backing. On “Showtime”, the tempo is increased as the band rock out, although the ELP inspired lyrics seem out of place amongst the frantic riffing although may be it is only old prog-heads like me that will notice this. With a wonderful rock shuffle, “For a Reason” closes the rock side with a joyful smile, the band reminding me of mid period family. Moving on the acoustic side features five early seventies sounding tracks with “Cycles” reminding me of The Greatest Show on Earth, including some excellent flute and guitar playing as well as rolling had percussion that pushes the song along at a fine pace, whilst a country fell is evident on the good-time feel of “By the Sea”. To close the side, “The Dragons Den” has some wonderfully whimsical lyrics about Alice and her Dragon, the light arrangement and sympathetic arrangements making the song one of my favourites so far

Basically a three piece, the trio play a huge array of instruments, the variety finally coming into play on disc two as the Electric side threatens to blow your mind wide open with the guitar heavy psych of “Massive Attack”, a crunching riff overflowing with wah-driven guitar and pounding drums, the bass propelling the song forward with an angry buzz. A similar sound is also present on “Anger Management” another rocker of vintage quality; the band beginning to loosen up for the freakier romps that is “Cybernaut”, the tune opening up with some stellar playing from all. Finally hitting the lysergic zone “Silent Voices” is an eastern influenced track that is early Floyd influenced especially in the authentic organ sound, a great song that spins around the room in a perfumed haze. Final track on the side is a slide riddled slice of county whimsy about “Farmer Jack’s Tree”, ending the strongest and most Terrascopic side so far. Ok, onto the Experiment side, an intriguing title that seems slightly misleading as “Citizen of the World” sound like it could be equally at home on the Electric side apart from the fact it uses an acoustic guitar for its riffing, good song though with a very evident 1970 feel. Next up, “The Art of Deception” has a jazzy groove, with some laid back Clarinet playing and breathy vocals giving the song a summery sheen, this feel carried on by the funky rhythms of “Fan the Flames”, the songs of Traffic coming to mind. Featuring sliding, atonal string sounds and half sung, half spoken words, “Little Fly” finally justifies the word experiment, a paranoid tale about a fly in the room; this is a surreal piece of whimsy that is strange in a good way, although you may not play it that often. To end the side and the album, “In My Own Time” is a slice of 70’s rock with more excellent flute a punchy guitar riff and dynamics that lift the song a notch above, add to this some Mariachi trumpets and you have a future classic that is one of the strongest thing on the entire album. A brave experiment, this album may be slightly too long and, personally, I would have liked to have heard the song mixed up over the discs rather than broken into section, however, having said that, I will definitely be returning to the album as I feel that it may be a grower with enough variety and quality to justify a long and happy musical relationship. (

By Simon Lewis




ROUND-UP : PROG By Geoff Barton


Room Thirteen

Treat - Audio Verite/Deceptive Blends

Audio experimental!

It's not just the Rolling Stones that can offer a good double album you know!

Oxford's finest are back with their third album.

Tue Jun 9 14:42:07 2009

Rated 10 out of 13

by Jim Ody

This is the third album for Oxford experimental rockers The Treat, and whilst their last album, ‘Phonography’ in 2007 saw them stretch out further than being just ‘a classic rock’n’roll band’, here they have blown the expectations out of the water by releasing a double album. Packed with twenty tracks, it is in fact packaged as four sides that once again showcases the band’s ability to be different and try their hand at many genres. We have a Rock side, an Acoustic side, Electric side and Experiment side letting main man Mike Hyder unleash his muse, and flex his creative musical muscle.

The first five songs make up the Rock side and arguably this could be what you would be most familiar with as a Treat fan. ‘This Is The One’ has that 70’s rock feel of Zepplin with big guitars and sing-along vocals. This then leads to, ‘Showtime’ that is a quirky rock song with stoner-fuzzbox guitars, and a more theatrical rock-influence of the likes of 12 Stone Toddler partying with David Bowie and WASP…Next song, ‘Drawing Lines’ has chugging guitars before the song explodes into a great anthem of a track. Pulling classic rock influences with a dash of The Ramones it’s a pure joy to my ears. Things then slow down for a chilled, laid back psychedelic rock/jazz number in, ‘On The Waterfront’, and this is the first of the songs that suggest that you shouldn’t take too much notice in the ‘Rock, Acoustic, Electric & Experiment’ headings, as the songs could be under either headings. Then in, ‘For A Reason’ we have a quick-tempo foot-tapper that is catchy with a melodic guitar riff, and a shuffling drum beat. Good stuff.

The first song under the ‘Acoustic’ banner is, ‘Beautiful Way’ that has the band’s almost famous long-intro that we’ve become accustomed to. It’s gentle with a trumpet and flugelhorn along with an acoustic guitar giving a contemplative lazy-afternoon-in-the-sun daydream of a track, before the kaleidoscopic musical mix of ‘Cycles’. This is a song that has a Tonbak & Daf and is head on collision of Folk, Blues, Eastern and a hint of Country, but works well. Then we have ‘Sweet Jasmine’ which is a thoughtful instrumental sounding very much like some of Eddie Vedder’s solo music on the soundtrack he wrote for the film ‘Into The Wild’. The next track is a cross between an Irish Folk track and Frank Turner, and called, ‘By The Sea’. It’s another sing-along and ale drinking song that’s as catchy as scurvy but a whole lot more welcoming! The last song in the section is ‘The Dragon Den’ which once again sees Mike tip his hat to John Lennon and The Beatles in a mid-tempo track in this very vein.

As the beginnings of the ‘Electric’ section starts I realise that this is a side of the band which could very well be their strongest, and whilst I also suspect that Mike Hyder likes to tinker with his experimental side, this is where his true strength lies. ‘Massive Attack’ is a blistering track with big deep guitar riffs and a real Heavy Metal feeling towards it, whereas ‘Anger Management’ is very much Janes Addiction, a side to the band that I’ve not seen before but again whole-heartedly encourage. ‘Cybernaut’ has the big Sabbath-esque riffs and slots nicely under the 70’s Metal umbrella. Things then get slightly strange in, ‘Silent Voices’ that sound a little like Porno For Pyros with it’s experimental melodic Rock, whilst we have some good old Folk/Blues in ‘Farmer Jack’s Tree’ that is poor genius…

Now most bands you might worry a little bit if they had a section of five songs under the heading of ‘Experiment’, and with The Treat this could be multiplied by one hundred. However, ‘Citizen Of The World’ eases us in with a Black Sabbath-esque riff on an acoustic guitar and bongos and vocals that sound a little like Iron Maiden without the warble. ‘The Art Of Deception’ is a 60’s Rock/Pop song with an acoustic guitar and a kazoo, making for a trippy-little number. ‘Fan The Flames’ is a great track that is part Rhythm & Blues, and part Funk found in a bar in 1970’s Manhattan. Beautifully arranged it’s a surprising but refreshing track. Then we have a song that quite frankly is a waste of time for me in, ‘Little Fly’ that might have been funny at the time, but just gets monotonous far too quickly, with little music other than a stringed instrument making fly noises, and… well, I’ll just concentrate on the other tracks here! The last song ‘In My Own Time’ brings in the use of all of the instruments that Mike and buddies have acquired with hints of Mexican brass and a whole host of other percussion. A complex but nice song to finish!

As a whole, the album is a mixed bag, but then you would expect this. The ‘Electric’ side is my favourite with 4 or the 5 tracks making onto the album if I had to halve this to a more modest 10 track offering, however there are possibly 2 in each of the others that are very strong, and the only weak track here is the awful, ‘Little Fly’. The Treat like to try something different, and with each offering you are never disappointed. As optimistic as a double album is, this is an enjoyable CD. It would’ve been easy to pick out 12 strong tracks here and forget the rest, but then it would’ve changed the whole of what this album is about. Wholesome and innocently entertaining, it maybe that The Treat are slowly gaining the musical recognition that they truly deserve. Good work again, lads!

Track Listing
01 - This Is The One
02 - Showtime
03 - Drawing Lines
04 - On The Waterfront
05 - For A Reason
06 - Beautiful Way
07 - Cycles
08 - Sweet Jasmine
09 - By The Sea
10 - The Dragon Den
11 - Massive Attack
12 - Anger Management
13 - Cybernaut
14 - Silent Voices
15 - Farmer Jack's Tree
16 - Citizen Of The World
17 - The Art Of Deception
18 - Fan The Flames
19 - Little Fly
20 - In My Own Time

Room Thirteen - Where Music Rocks

© 2003 - 2007 - All rights reserved.


Blogcritics is an online magazine, a community of writers and readers from around the globe.

Music Review: The Treat - Audio Verite/Deceptive Blends

Part of: Eurorock

Author: Jeff Perkins — Published: Jun 26, 2009 at 7:03 am

The Treat reveal their weapons of mass construction

Open the cover of The Treat’s sprawling new double CD and you will see the band's own weapons of mass construction. An impressive array of old and newguitars and instruments ranging from Fender to sitar and bongos to didgeridoos (and from such countries as Africa to India) help give an indication of the eclecticism on offer within.

Last year I caught up with The Treat and reviewed their highly original album Phonography. I wrote, "it will be interesting to see where they take it from here". So, has my own question been answered on this ambitious release, Audio Verite/Deceptive Blends?

Straight away my intrigue is made deeper by the fact that each disc is further divided into what would have been ‘sides’, in the days of good old vinyl. The four ‘sides’ are in fact themes, starting with 'Side Rock' and the anthemic “This Is The One”. However, you will soon learn that you can’t second guess this band and when the oddball “Showtime” kicks in you realize it’s going to be an intriguing ride.

“Drawing Lines” draws its own lines from neo-punk whilst “On The Waterfront”, complete with melodica solo, takes us off in a more gentle direction of lazy days down by the river. Listen closely and you can hear that the display of instruments is no mere showcase and each track introduces something new and colourful from the collection.

The hooky rockabilly of “For A Reason” leads on into 'Side Acoustic' (same disc, different section) and a track called “Beautiful Way”. Its arrival signals another side-step within this journey. “Cycles” tackles the never ending world of senseless politics, conflict, and war with a set of lyrics set within a Middle-Eastern vibe. Meanwhile the delicately performed instrumental “Sweet Jasmine” shimmers nicely.

The retro sounding “By The Sea”, and “The Dragon’s Den” bring the acoustic side of the Audio Verite section to a close with two well told storybook songs. Changing discs we have Deceptive Blends, with the first theme being 'Side Electric', which arrives within a fog of psychedelia.

“Anger Management” captures the rage and anxiety of its title. The mystical “Silent Voices” weaves a smoky vibe as one of the album’s stronger offerings.

The last section, 'Side Experiment', opens with the politically inspired “Citizens Of The World” which strums its way like a protest song from a different era whilst sadly reminding us that nothing ever really changes. “The Art Of Deception” has a village green quirky Englishness about it.

However, another twist takes us to the deep south with a funky “Fan The Flames”. The persistent “Little Fly” made his way into the studio and onto the album, before happily flying off to annoy another day.

'Side Experiment' ends the album with the colourful “In My Own Time” which comes complete with an excellent first take trumpet solo by Chris Lewis. One of the best songs on the album, it’s tucked away at the end leaving a strong impression.

I bet my hideous overdraft on the fact that the word ‘ambitious’ will crop up on the vast majority of reviews for this album. The album is also quirky, undeniably eclectic, creative, idiosyncratic, indulgent, brave, experimental, and yes, I have to agree, ambitious.

It draws firstly from a huge range of influences, utilizes a vast collection of instruments, and is somewhat reflective of the constantly changing world in which we live. Its presentation in sections is proudly retro with its four sides grouped around their themes and yet it is an album that also gives it all a contemporary twist.

It represents, as guitarist, composer, and producer of The Treat, Mike Hyder says, 'a three and half year musical collage'. Inevitably some parts of the whole will work better for some than others. It is most definitely an album by a band following their muse and one that is clearly destined to divide opinion.

It is also just what its title promises it to be, and is ever changing, often promising, sometimes frustrating, always surprising, occasionally disappointing, yet never predictable.

In an age when it is all but impossible to explore boundaries that have already been pushed countless times before, The Treat have decided to attempt to do just that. They have bravely dived in, gone with their instincts, and created a diverse musical experiment that expands some of the signs contained within Phonography.

As a result my question of ‘where next’ has been somewhat torn up and thrown into a swirling wind with this wholly individual project. Now, I am left asking exactly the same question for next time. One thing for sure is that it won’t be easy to predict.

Have a look and a listen on the band's website.



DPRP - Dutch Progressive Rock Page



The Treat – Audio Verité/Deceptive Blends

Country of Origin: UK
Format: 2CD
Record Label: Rockular Recordings
Catalogue #: RRT03A/B
Year of Release: 2009
Time: 85:15
Info: The Treat
Samples: Click here


Audio Verité: [Side Rock]: This Is The One (4:16), Showtime (3:23), Drawing Lines (3:30), On The Waterfront (4:16), For A Reason (3:26) [Side Acoustic]: Beautiful Way (4:52), Cycles (5:19), Sweet Jasmine (3:16), By The Sea (3:50), The Dragon Den (3:56)

Deceptive Blends: [Side Electric]: Massive Attack (5:23), Anger Management (4:33), Cybernaut (3:06), Silent Voices (5:20), Farmer Jack’s Tree (3:38) [Side Experiment]: Citizen Of The World (5:58), The Art Of Deception (3:08), Fan The Flames (5:49), Little Fly (2:49), In My Own Time (5:19)

Eclectic Oxford-based rockers The Treat – and their main-man Michael Hyder in particular – are clearly not short of either material or ambition, with this new double album coming just a year after their Phonography CD of 2008, and is only their third release overall. As can be shown by the fact that the track list is broken down into clearly defined sides of different styles, The Treat cover a lot of ground here, although Hyder’s distinctive vocals and a certain seventies-leaning aesthetic help give a sense of cohesiveness to proceedings. The press release compares the band’s music to that of The Beatles (in their White Album era), Led Zeppelin and Queen – I certainly wouldn’t say the music reaches the greatness of these three bands in their pomp as yet, but you can see where the comparisons come from, in that these bands certainly pushed the envelope creativity-wise whilst retaining their own identity. The cover shows a variety of instruments, all of which are used (some extensively) over the course of the album – occasionally the use of the more exotic of these seems a bit superfluous but more often they are put to good use, often adding some interesting touches that help add to the songs.

As you might expect, “Side Rock” sees the band bashing out some blues-tinged seventies influenced hard rock in true power trio style. The opening This Is The One, which grooves hard and has a strong chorus, is probably the pick of the bunch although Drawing Lines, with its chugging guitars (reminiscent of Queen’s Now I’m Here) and almost punk-ish attitude, is also worthy of special mention. Less “rock” is On The Waterfront, which almost seems like Hyder’s own interpretation of the Otis Redding classic Sitting On The Dock Of The Bay. David Hart’s bass clarinet playing adds some interesting textures here.

“Side Acoustic”, as might be expected, is an altogether more laid back affair. The stand-out here (and one of the album’s highlights) is Beautiful Day, an atmospheric, mellow ballad which benefits a great deal from the warm vintage keyboard sounds Hyder employs on the song. The politically-charged Cycles is driven by Hart’s tabla playing and sees Hyder playing the mandolin, whilst the instrumental Sweet Jasmine is nicely melancholy, with some sensitive piano playing from Hart. By The Sea, however, leans (musically at least) a little too close to Queen’s 39 for comfort, in my opinion.

“Side Electric” is subtitled “another side of rock” so once again sees The Treat rocking out. Massive Attack (nice title!) builds slowly and lays on the power chords, culminating in a powerful chorus and some great wah-wah drenched guitar work from Hyder. Cybernaut has distorted vocals and a vaguely grunge-esque feel, whilst Farmer Jack’s Tree is a raw, country blues track with added banjo. Silent Voices is almost a pastiche of Pink Floyd’s classic Set The Controls For The Heart Of The Sun, and again sails a bit close to the wind. The only real faux-pas, though, is the rather naff rap-come-spoken word section on Anger Management, which spoils the flow of what is an otherwise good track.

We’re in to ‘anything goes’ territory with “Side Experiment” where Hyder presumably put anything that didn’t fit into the other categories. Citizen Of The World opens with a riff which has similarities to the best-known riff in the world – the one on Deep Purple’s Smoke On The Water – except its played on acoustic guitar and tabla! There’s also some sitar on this one. The Art Of Deception is quirky pop with Hyder singing in a “posh” accent; the song reminded me of something that New Zealand avant-garde pop outfit Split Enz might have done in their earliest days. Fan The Flames sees the band indulging in some cod-funk playing, and is another strong track carried by an inventive rhythm section. The album closes with In My Own Time, which even has a mariachi band-style section, mixing surprisingly well with the song’s epic rock feel. The only pity is that Little Fly got left on the album, a truly terrible spoken-word-and–effects piece that was no doubt fun to make but should have been left on the cutting room floor.

Overall, whilst there are a few weaker moments here and there, and you could always make the argument that the best of these songs could have made a stronger single album, I doubt that was the point of this album, which aims to showcase a wide variety of styles and, in Hyder’s own words, create ‘a song for practically every occasion’. Another good album by The Treat then, which I hope will be backed up by some touring, as its surely in the live environment that these songs will shine the brightest.

Conclusion: 7 out of 10



Martin Hudson - Editor, Classic Rock Society Magazine

Metal Perspective - Online Heavy Metal & Hard Rock Magazine
Metal Perspective Review
The Treat - "Audio Verite / Deceptive Blends"
[Rockular Recordings, 2009]
The Treat - Phonography
01 - This Is The One
02 - Showtime
03 - Drawing Lines
04 - On The Waterfront
05 - For A Reason
06 - Beautiful Way
07 - Cycles
08 - Sweet Jasmine
09 - By The Sea
10 - The Dragon Den
11 - Massive Attack
12 - Anger Management
13 - Cybernaut
14 - Silent Voices
15 - Farmer Jack's Tree
16 - Citizen Of The World
17 - The Art Of Deception
18 - Fan The Flames
19 - Little Fly
20 - In My Own Time

Mandolin, Banjo, Sitar, Theremin, Bongos, Castanets, Tabla, Timpani, Didgeridoo, Djembe, Congas, Flute, Clarinet, Mariachi Trumpets, Tonbak, Daf, Setar,  2 discs classified in 4 thematic sides/categories (Rock, Acoustic, Electric, Experiment), 20 songs and the third album by the Oxford elitists The Treat is a fact. A double CD isn't something quite common nowadays, especially when it doesn't include any cover versions… Now, there's an interesting detail I'd like to share with you, before we cut to the chase. Whatever this may means to whomever, the first issue of "Classic Rock presents Prog Magazine" featured a brand new track of The Treat, namely "Citizen Of The World". I mentioned above one by one all those unconventional musical instruments for two reasons mainly. On the one hand, for they are quite exotic regarding a rock album and on the other hand, for making clear that "Audio Verite/Deceptive Blends" broadens even further the musical palette of the band. Their idea of dividing the album in four sides proves just that.

First in the row is the Rock side, which, in essence, is the expected sequence of their "Phonography" album. Finely crafted songs that hark back to the sound of bands like Led Zeppelin ("This Is The One") and Beau Brummells & Violent Femmes ("For A Reason"). I should also mention the superbly arranged leisureliness of "On The Waterfront", which takes you to a euphoric state of mind. The Acoustic side brings to the fore a certain 60s and 70s folkish and jazzy flavour. The majestic Tim Buckleyesque "Beautiful Way" and the instrumental ode to Ennio Morricone "Sweet Jasmine" are the definite highlights. Temperature rises in the Electric side, which is dominated by two up tempo and aggressive tunes. "Massive Attack" is heavy and excellent with its fuzz guitars and the sing along chorus, and the same goes for "Anger Management" as well.  Eastern melodies flow throughout the psychedelic gem of "Silent Voices" (Hyder sings down the telephone on this one!). This is a really impressive attempt to capture the Syd Barrett's feel.  Experiment. The last side. I'm not sure if the title lives up to the expectations it creates though, as with the exception of the outrageously surreal "Little Fly" there's little that differ to the previous quality standards of songwriting. Unless, the word experiment is about the use of horns in three songs, firstly on "Fan The Flames" that tips the wink to Dr John's legacy, secondly on The Kinks-inspired pop-craft  "The Art Of Deception" and lastly on the brilliant "In My Own Time", probably the most suitable epilogue.

Productionwise, the sound is much similar to that of a 70s record in its re-mastered edition and this is a good thing, as it depicts the atmosphere intended. Don't get me wrong though; the album might lean towards a vintage aesthetic, but is also modern in terms of attitude. Technically, there are no faults given that all three musicians are skilful and the arrangements, either complex or simple, are methodical and inspired. Some possible complaints would include Hyder's nasal and limited range vocals, although his performance (raw, intense and immediately recognizable) occasionally brings to mind Mark E. Smith of The Fall, plus the total amount of tracks, which could have been lessened. Nevertheless, band's third work is undeniably their best so far. There's passion involved, not just an academic approach. This is art rock wandering through genres, while at the same time trying to be as accessible as possible. An overambitious album that succeeds (to a large extent) on its own terms.

Rating: 8/10 Reviewer: Stefanos Lountzis Rating Guide
Band info
Hard Rock


Official Website(s):

Label's Website(s):

Current Line-up
Mike Hyder (Guitars, Vocal)
Dom Lash (Bass, Keyboards)
'Purple' David Hart (Drums, Tabla, Bass Clarinet)
Agent 555 (Single) [2005]
In Technicolor [2006]
Phonography [2007]
Audio Verite / Deceptive Blends [2009]






Audio Verite / Deceptive Blends

Rockular 2009

"The pieces of the puzzle have finally come together and fit", declare the Oxford trio aiming to bepuzzle their listener.

To come up with a double album in the economy times is an ambitious move, but THE TREAT have been riding their ambition for a long time now, since "In Technicolor" colored the arid sonic landscape in 2003, and the retro-futurism of 2007's "Phonography". Those were tight records but the new one is sprawling and takes too many strains in to be whole, with allusions too obvious to savor. While the tasty opener "This Is The One" comes full of swagger, the following "Showtime" unashamedly lifts the hook of ELP's "Karn Evil 9"; that's as far as the band's previously infectious humor goes with titles such as "In My Own Time", the full-on progressive, Mariachi-tinged assault, and "Massive Attack", an alluring heavy metal smash.

It doesn't take away the sheer enjoyment of any given song - and who can resist the "Fan The Flames" gritty funk or the band's leader Michael Hyder's acoustic guitar-and-harmonium ripple on "On The Waterfront" from "Side Rock"? Yes, the album has not only two parts but also four sides as if it was on vinyl. The borders are blurred, still, with the "Silent Voices" Middle Eastern haze on "Side Electric", yet "Side Acoustic" sounds pure, if varied. There's "By The Sea", a folk-based ditty with a catchy banjo twang, and "Cycles", a tremendous groover with a Moroccan jive in its snake-like charm. Here's your aural truth of disc one; disc two, meanwhile, has "Farmer Hack's Tree" turning from the slide-awashed swampy blues into country rock and gaining weight as it progresses, and the similarly shaped powerful theatricality of "Citizen Of The World", plus vaudevillian "The Art Of Deception" which open "Side Experiment".

Too multicolored to digest at once, the album is best to be sipped slowly to let its wonders get under the skin. And they will creep in!


Dmitry Epstein                                                                      Let It Rock



The Big Takeover > reviews

The Treat – Audio Verité/Deceptive Blends (Rockular)

by Michael Toland
20 June 2009

If you’re a neo-classic rock group, you’re duty-bound to attempt a double album at some point. The follow-up to the TREAT‘s remarkable sophomore effort Phonography, Audio Verité/Deceptive Blends essentially combines its third and fourth LPs into one package. Though divided into four parts – “Side Rock,” “Side Acoustic,” “Side Electric,” “Side Experiment” – in truth the album mixes and matches as it sees fit, with a stronger folk rock element than in records past. That’s not saying much, though – MICHAEL HYDER and his troop always make a virtue of eclecticism, and this record is no different. As before, the band casually masters heavy grunge (“Massive Attack”), whimsical folk (“By the Sea”), moody psychedelia (“Silent Voices”), rockin’ pop (“This is the One”), groovy blues-rock (“Farmer Jack’s Tree”) and mixtures of all of the above (“Citizen of the World”). Unsurprisingly for an album this jam-packed, the tunestack could’ve been trimmed a bit (the jammy folk-pop cut “Fan the Flames” starts to irritate fairly quickly and “Little Fly” proves that no one needs to emulate JANDEK), but overall AV/DB is an explosion of talent.


The Treat - Audio Verité/Deceptive Blends

on Sunday 21 June 2009

by bato

author awarded score: 80/100

           Rockular Recordings Ltd., April 2009

Audio Verité/Deceptive Blends is the third album from experimental rockers The Treat, coming from Oxford (England). The Treat is one of the best and most underrated bands to emerge in recent years on the UK musical scene. We’ve previously written a few words on their second release Phonography, but I must say; this new album is in a league for itself.

They have divided this album into four themed sections exploring prog rock, country, folk, jazz and ethnic styles, while still pursuing their love of classic hard rock in all its forms, and of course, psychedelia. This is actually a double album packed with twenty tracks showing band’s rock side, acoustic side, electric side and finally experimental side.
There’re used a whole bunch of musical instruments in order to create this quite unusual and unique release. Old and new musical instruments have been collected from around the world, which was also shown on the album cover.

However, the first five songs marking the Rock side are without any doubt the best ones leaving biggest impression on me. Those five tracks summers up what The Treat is all about, a true essence of the band I guess. With sing-along vocals, great theatrical atmosphere and big guitar parts it reminds me of old rock acts such Led Zeppelin, David Bowie, Pink Floyd etc. It contains just everything you would like to hear in a rock release; changing tempos, catchy and melodic guitar riffs, shuffling drum beats and above everything very pleasant and fresh sounding vocals.

After this masterpiece follows an acoustic side also contains five songs, but for me less interesting. It is relaxing and mostly instrumental, with too long intros and mostly acoustic guitar driven parts that tend to get boring if listening to it more than once. All of the songs put forward on this part of the album have this almost folkish sound to it mixing blues, eastern and western folk elements and almost The Beatles like parts. I definitely do see the artistically value of this part of the record, but for me as a metal fan this is pretty boring to be honest.

Electric section
starts of the second CD surprises me a lot, as you can hear clear influences of Black Sabbath, Queen, Janes Addiction and all those classic UK rock/metal acts from the 70s. Esp. song like “Cybernaut” is good having this Black Sabbath touch to it with nice and dark riffs. Even though I’m not the biggest fan of this kind of music I find it very decent and something that will please all classic rock fans.

Experimental side
closes this album with a whole range of instruments that can be heard here; from bongos over acoustic guitars to percussions and kazoo (Remember; Kazoo is not just an Italian word for ‘dick’ but also a wind instrument with a ‘buzzing’ timbral quality to a player's voice when one vocalizes into it). You can hear just all sorts of influences here, from Black Sabbath riffs, to some Rock and Pop sounds of the 60s and 70s to more Funk sounds of 70s and early 80s. It is quite refreshing and… well just experimental but again not something that will please metal fans and majority of the readers of this webzine.

All in this entire album is very enjoyable but it is also very anonymous as most of the songs are just sounding the same. This music is like something from outside of this world; that’s why it is hard to recommend it for anyone in particular. It sure has its genius and brilliant moments that deserve your attention. Do not take my words as truth, just go and order this strange release from or




THE TREAT is a UK based band, which musically combines all sorts of UK Rockstyles from the past and on their 3rd album ‘Audio verite deceptive blends’, this seems to be working best, as this is a whopping double-CD that contains 20 songs divided in 4 different parts/sides. Side 1 is by far the favorite side, because this is the Classic Rocksound, which see the band playing songs in the style of THE WHO and VAN HALEN. The other sides include an acoustic part, an experimental part and a heavy electric side. The experimental part is also very interesting, as on the 5 songs in this part of the CD the band uses a lot of ‘out of the ordinary’ type of instruments, such as a Daf and a Setar from Iran or the Indian Sitar. Like said before, the beginning of the CD is pure Classic Rock, 70s style, but the rest of the CD digs deep in the music history. Quite an original CD and definitely recommended to people who would like to hear influences from all sorts of bands combined, because in each and every song you can hear a different influence, ranging from 70s GENESIS, PINK FLOYD, LED ZEPPELIN, RUSH, BLUE OYSTER CULT to THE BEATLES. Check it out for yourself at:

(Points: 8.0 out of 10)

(Review by Gabor Kleinbloesem) 


R2 (Formerly 'Rock'n'Reel)

specialising in roots, singer-songwriter,folk, rock, world & blues music


Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Review: The Treat - Audio Verité/Deceptive Blends


Rockular Recordings, Ltd.

Released: June 15, 2009

One of the best things about the Treat's last album, 2007's
Phonography, was its ability to really move around through rock's past. It was the movement from influence to influence that gave the album a lot of its life and that's why their new approach is a little bit disappointing. The double CD Audio Verité/Deceptive Blends is organized more like a double LP with four sides, each with its own direction, and that makes the whole affair more of a sterile exercise than a celebration. While it's a significant hit to the album's overall energy, there are still some good fine songs here even if not displayed as well as in the past.

The first "side," Side Rock, takes a straightforward approach, dealing mostly in 70s hard rock (with the exception of the rather pop-oriented "On the Waterfront"). I could have done without the opener's bow to AC/DC, but things kick into gear with the bombastic "Showtime." Whether tapping blues rock or glam or something in between, the Treat show clearly that they can rock in a way that brings the past alive.

Side Acoustic is broader than the name suggests, dabbling in acoustic psychedelia as much as folk or blues. Syd Barrett and Led Zeppelin make their mark on the side's best cuts, which far outshine the weak, meandering "Sweet Jasmine."

On Side Electric, they take another stab at hard rock with the heavier "Massive Attack" and the edgier, bluesier "Anger Management." With the exception of the psyche trippiness of "Silent Voices," this is ground largely covered by Side Rock, only amped up a bit.

Side Experiment is a bit of a misnomer as experiemntation isn't really what the Treat is about. These "experiments" are more about reliving the experimental music of the late 60s rather than reliving its experimental spirit. Still, there are some fine detours into psyche, funk and early prog even if nothing really goes out on a limb.

The Treat essentially attack their music in detail on Audio Verité/Deceptive Blends and that does a better job of illustrating their skill than it does of making a great album. Even if they prove their point on all four counts, which is questionable at times, my head understands it better than my heart...and that is the album's principle flaw.

Satriani: 8/10
Zappa: 6/10
Dylan: 7/10
Aretha: 5/10
Overall: 6/10


Second Album


 'One of an up and coming crop of ...mind blowing bands delivering the goods in spades' - Classic Rock Magazine

'Phonography...pushes radio-friendly power pop to the edges of heavy metal in considerable accomplished piece of work from the Oxford based trio' - Rock'n'Reel

'Phonogrphy...demonstrates a new level of maturity' - Classic Rock Society Magazine

'One of the best albums of the year' - Let it Rock

'An excellent overall package that hits the spot' -Terrascope

‘Phonography ....shows how a classic hard rock album should sound and look in 2008'’ - Metal Revolution

'With a catchy tune like 'Roaming', the band has a hit on their hands!' - Strutter 77

'The music has a far greater range, and as a whole the album is better produced showing a real maturity' -Room Thirteen

'These rockers have the talent for writing good songs' - Metal to Infinity

‘The Treat not only incorporate a lot of British rock styles from the late 60s and early 70s, but they manage to do it seamlessly and make it fresh, drawing on everything from the raw bluesiness of Led Zeppelin to the grandiose prog of Genesis’ - RNRN

'A treat for all vintage rock fans' - Metal Perspective

'The Treat have delivered an imaginative collection of styles and influences it and adding some freshness...and pieced it together in their own way'. -Blogcritics Magazine

'There’s plenty to enjoy here from a band who clearly know their way around a melody & know how to incorporate a wide variety of styles' - DPRP

'Accomplished and engaging, Phonography is fresh and familiar all at once' - The  Big Takeover

'Phonography' is a belter, the more I play it the more I like it' -Jon Wisbey (The BCFM Rock Show)

'The album just seems to get better with each listen!' - Paul Baker (Soundscapes, ARFM)

'wow!' - Richard Allen (DJ Magazine Programme on hearing an advance copy of ‘PHONOGRAPHY’)

PHONOGRAPHY : Top 3 best album of 2008

THE TREAT's 'Phonography' album has been voted in the Top 3 best albums of 2008 by the BCFM Rock Show. DJ Jon Wisbey has been playing THE TREAT on a regular basis over the past year on his show, broadcast from Bristol, in the UK. The album was voted third best (bronze medal) album by a panel of judges who had this to say about THE TREAT & the 'Phonography' album :

'An interesting band'

'Good, no nonsense rock songs in that good old fashioned way'

'Great musicianship, reminds me in place of early Iron Maiden'

'This album spins tales of war & life with great lyrics'

'There are lots of influences mixed here into a great, listenable whole, with a neat and tidy production'

'This album has a highly distinctive guitar sound'

'This doesn't sound like any other so-called indie rock band I've heard, around at the moment'

'Looking at the album artwork, the singer looks like he's entering a Liam Gallagher lookalike contest. However, thank God, that's where the similarity ends'

'They're a great band'

Full Reviews Below


REVIEW IN TimeMazine Issue #4

THE TREAT - Phonography 2008 (CD Rockular Recordings)
The Treat are coming from Oxford, England and they claim to be the UK’s best new Progressive/Psychedelic/New Classic Hard Rock band! I don’t know if this is true but I can assure you that the guys are really great musicians with great skills in composing and performing the music they like. There is plenty of ‘garbage’ from the new Brit rock scene that hits the charts and the radio, but the true rock ‘n’ roll is coming from these guys and their 2nd release “Phonography” sounds really fresh and quite imaginative. The sound is guitar based (“Fanfare for the King”), sometimes dark (“Effervescence”) sometimes more melodic (“Erased”) while the progressive elements are giving it a more 70s oriented feeling (“Bolivian Diary”, “Clutching at Jagged Glass”). Sometimes they flirt with 80s FM rock (“Roaming”, “Too Late”) and sometimes they add a psychedelic/progressive feeling to their songs (“Meadowland”). “Haitian morning Dress” is a cool blues number with slide guitar. Such a variety! The production is really good. This is their 2nd album (the 1st “In Technicolor” was released in 2004 and they have a new comer “Audio Verite/Deceptive Blends” released summer 2009) and so far The Treat have earned praise from critics, magazines and radio stations. It’s time for you to discover them! TLM


CLASSIC ROCK featured THE TREAT as one of a new crop of up and coming progressive bands to watch in the August 2008 issue of the magazine. They included the track Meadowland on the cover mount CD & printed the piece below.




The Treat’s second album Phonography looks set to

consolidate their growing reputation as accomplished

musicians and gifted songwriters. The Oxford band

have an eclectic approach to making music, effortlessly

blending various genres while forging their own unique

identity. Their love of psychedelic is hinted at

throughout Phonography, particularly on the acoustic-

flavoured Meadowland - not to mention the album cover

artwork which, they claim, is as extravagant as any late

60s/early 70s album sleeve.

Taken from Phonography, On Rockular Recordings






Phonography has been reviewed in this month's edition of Classic Rock magazine, by the legendary Geoff Barton (formerly editor of Sounds, Kerrang & now Editor At Large of Classic Rock)....and a good review it is too......!



The Treat:

it’s only Xerox ‘n’ roll.





Rockular Recordings

Belying their instrumental limitations,

Oxford three piece The Treat have

Created an idiosyncratic album full of

Numerous twists and turns.Socio-

Political commentary is the name of

The game on tearaway tracks such as

Fanfare For The King (‘He’s been

digging for black gold to grease his

own machine’) and The Deathday

Parties, which is ‘dedicated to the two

B’s - how can you sleep?’ Hmm…we

can assume they’re not referring to

Buster Bloodvessel.

Elsewhere Bolivian Diary is a

Deceptively jaunty ode to Che

Guevara-style revolutionaries;

Meadowland (a track on last issue’s

free prog CD) is a clever critique of the

urbanisation of Britain’s countryside

that name checks nursery-rhyme

characters (‘If Doctor Foster goes to

Gloucester/He’ll step in a pool of acid

rain’); and Black Cat Whites is a

madcap Syd Barrett-esque ode to an

extremely fat feline.



The review below is in the current issue of Rock'n'Reel, the roots, rock, blues magazine.


THE TREAT’s second album

pushes radio-friendly

power-pop to the edges of heavy

metal in considerable. Firmly

rooted in the hard blues, rock and

psychedelic of the late 60s and early

70s, Phonography is nevertheless an

accomplished piece of work from

the Oxford-based trio.



The Treat    Phonography

Rockular Recordings

The Treat are an Oxford based trio playing a hard guitar led mixture of indie and classic rock. This, their second album, demonstrates a new level of maturity and a step up in the quality of the song writing from their debut in 2004. Where the first album was a straight rock album, this one has a bit of variety with the acoustic blues of Haitian Mourning Dress, the grungier Make You Crawl, and the Faces-like Too Late. I haven't had a chance to catch them live yet, but I hear they put on a good show. MB

Review in Classic Rock Society Magazine


The Treat – Phonography (Rockular)

21 April 2009

Led by frontperson MIKE HYDER, THE TREAT plays guitar rock. That sounds a little too plain and simple, admittedly, but it’s accurate. If it’s a rock-related style powered by sounds coming out of six strings on a piece of wood – blues rock, folk rock, power pop, prog rock, hard rock – this Oxford-based trio incorporates it. Phonography, the band’s second album, could have ended up as a headache-inducing hodgepodge of style-hopping genre exercises. But thanks to Hyder’s consistency as a writer, guitarist and singer, tracks as superficially diverse as the hard rocking “Fanfare For the King,” the pop-minded “Roaming” and the storytelling “Bolivian Diary” sound of a piece with each other and the rest of the record. Accomplished and engaging, Phonography is fresh and familiar all at once.

Filed under



The Treat - Phonography

Country of Origin: UK
Format: CD
Record Label: Independent
Catalogue #: RRT02
Year of Release: 2008
Time: 48:02
Info: The Treat
Samples: Click here

Tracklist: Fanfare For The King (5:41), Make You Crawl (3:36), The Deathday Parties (3:22), Bolivian Diary (4:30), Roaming (2:55), Meadowland (3:32), Haitian Mourning Dress (2:54), Too Late (4:37), Clutching At Jagged Glass (3:53), Effervescence (4:12), Black Cat Whites (1:59), Erased (5:55)

The Treat, a three piece band from Oxford, show themselves to be a power trio in the traditional sense, the pure joy of making music with guitar bass and drums shining through. The first couple of tracks on this, their second album, sees the band drinking from the same musical well as the pioneering late 60’s early 70’s UK hard rock acts who used traditional blues as a base for exploring new territories; Fanfare For The King kicks things off with confidence, with a great lead guitar fanfare and a rollicking verse which echoes Black Sabbath’s classic Paranoid, whilst Make You Crawl has a swagger and groove that reminds one of early Led Zeppelin. Band main man Mike Hyder’s deep, gritty voice has a hint of Ian Gillan to it, which only emphasises the connection to the period. Yet Make You Crawl also nods towards a harder, alternative rock sound reminiscent of Soundgarden, which starts to hint at the variety of sounds and influences which The Treat proceed to, err, treat us to over the fifty-odd minutes of this disc.

At one extreme we have the hard-edged, politically charged Bolivian Diary, at the other the melodic indie rock of the world weary closer Erased; in between we get the band’s take on traditional blues (Haitian Mourning Dress), edgy new wave (Clutching At Jagged Glass) and Faces-like mod rock, complete with rollicking piano and Hammond (Too Late).

Of most interest to readers of this site will be the tracks which show Hyder’s clear love of Syd Barrett – Meadowland (a gentle, hazy track which could have come from one of Barrett’s solo efforts, and also nods to Ogdens’ Nut Gone Flake-era Small Faces) and Black Cat Whites (which echoes Floyd’s Bike a little too closely) – and the instrumental Effervescence, which with its flute work, pastoral guitar jangle and fluidity evokes the spirit of classic English prog bands such as Camel and Caravan.

Overall, not every song is a cracker and The Treat occasionally struggle to come out from the shadows of the bands who clearly influence them, but there’s plenty to enjoy here from a band who clearly know their way around a melody, know how to incorporate a wide variety of styles without seeming disjointed and certainly seem to be enjoying themselves. Kudos to whoever designed the great cover too, which compliments the album’s contents perfectly.

Conclusion: 7 out of 10


DPRP Webzine

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Review: The Treat - Phonography

Rockular Recordings

Released: 2007

On Phonography, the Treat not only incorporate a lot of British rock styles from the late 60s and early 70s, but they manage to do it seamlessly and make it fresh. They draw on everything from the raw bluesiness of Led Zeppelin to the grandiose prog of Genesis. Starting off an album with as much bombast as "Fanfare for a King," sets high expectations. In this game, there isn't much room between perfection and silliness and there's no doubt that the Treat are over the top, but what they pull off over the course of the album is rivaled today perhaps only by

The 70s are a curious time in rock history. In the wake of the Beatles-inspired experimentation of the late 60s, a lot of the music began trading its youthful energy for big, fat bombast. So often bands that rehash the 70s fail to correct that problem (and exacerbate it instead), but The Treat tap into only the very best and re-energize it. I can imagine a song like "Too Late," their homage to the Who and Faces, fizzling in the hands of the average purveyor of nostalgia despite being a fantastic song. But The Treat do more than just remake the sounds of the past, they relive them. And they live such a broad range too. They follow up "Too Late" by taking on King Crimson and Genesis. Earlier they live up to Sabbath and Cream and later to Traffic. "Black Cat Whites" jumps back and forth between Syd Barrett and Sweet without missing a beat. It just shows how good a handle they have on the music they love.

Their influences are a who's who of great British rock. Though they do occasionally slip into AOR flatness (for a few moments here and there, not for a few songs), but it's their energy and love that makes the album so exciting. Phonography does pretend that nothing has happened since 1975, but that's not the end of the story. Whether you like Zeppelin or Genesis, Cream or Procol Harem, Jethro Tull or Traffic, Syd Barrett or Sweet, the Who or Queen (I could really just keep going), the Treat has a reinterpretation that is more appreciation than copy.

Satriani: 8/10
Zappa: 5/10
Dylan: 7/10
Aretha: 7/10
Overall: 7/10

If you're curious about my rating categories, read the description.

Satriani - This category is based solely on technical ability and no one illustrates technical ability and absolutely nothing else better than Joe Satriani.

Zappa - This category is for innovation. In order to score high here, an artist must be successfully pushing musical or performance limits. Unlike Zappa, this won't always correlate to technical skill, but I felt he was the best choice for pure innovation.

*** It is important to note that the Zappa scale is different from the other three. For instance, a 1 on the Aretha scale would be "no soul." On the Zappa scale, a 1 would be a lot of innovation, but the innovation would be entirely bad. No innovation at all would be a 5. So, in a sense, it starts at 5 and goes in a negative or positive direction while the others start at 1 and only increase.

Dylan - This one is just about the songwriting. An artist could score high here and do a terrible job of performing their own great song. Dylan couldn't sing, but when he was on, he sure could write.

Aretha - Who better to represent soul than the Queen of Soul herself. However, don't be confused by the terminology, because this doesn't refer to Soul Music, but the soul of the music or its truth (even if that truth is just about good times).

The overall rating will not just be an average of these four categories, but it will be based on them. I'm not going to disclose the formula, because it may need to be tweaked as I go. Besides, anyone who loves rock and roll should know which is most important.

Labels: , , ,


Music Review: The Treat - Phonography

Written by Jeff Perkins
Published September 19, 2008
Part of Eurorock

Oxford is not only the city of dreaming spires it is also the home of the rock band The Treat. The three piece rock outfit released their first album In Technicolour in 2004. It was, in many ways, a straight ahead rock album with its feet set firmly in the classic heavy rock era of the late sixties and early seventies. Now they bring us Phonography (Rockular Recordings 2008) and it is clear that some changes have been taking place.

The Treat have taken a broader look at the troubled world and have become more outwardly political. Whilst not turning away from the classic driving rock of days gone by, they have added more dimension and texture resulting in a heady mix of styles.

The result is Phonography and it opens with a, recurring, mystical eastern tinge before opening up into the stomping “Fanfare For The King”. This is near ‘time warp’ stuff not only paying homage to the classic rock era but actually re-writing it and adding some freshness. This is clearly a band that has something to say and this track has lyrics that cut to the bone. “Make You Crawl” has a whole cross section of influences with touches of Queens Of The Stone Age, amongst others.  Yet, it has that heavy rock vibe from the early seventies as an irresistible undercurrent. Michael Hyder sings just within his limits and the threesome generate an admirable degree of power.

“Deathday Parties” is again cuttingly direct ‘there is a reason for this season of pain, and all your illusions will bring you only shame’. The highly effective “Bolivian Diary”, for me a clear highlight, has a revolutionary theme while generating a depth of sound that shows this band grew up absorbing classic rock like a sponge. “Roaming” takes us towards, but not quite into, radio friendly territory. Clearly recognizing a good melody when they write it, they are not afraid to build upon it. “Meadowland” shifts an acoustic gear down with a well worked statement about urban sprawl. Combining children’s nursery rhymes in with the edge of what the song says creates a good counter-balance.

A sudden right turn takes us into, “Haitian Mourning Dress”, which drips traditional blues and sits high within the set. The Treat return to classic rock with “Too Late” complete with swirling keys. “Clutching At Jagged Glass” takes us off in a whole host of different directions with a near progressive and edgy feel, which successfully emphasises the word ‘jagged’. Next we are into the psychedelic with the atmospheric and dramatic instrumental, “Effervescence”. Maybe the word ‘effervescence’, (“Effervescent Elephant”), hints at the Syd Barrett, “Bike”, styled opening to the following song, “Black Cat Whites”.

Having got the fixation that no-one can write like Syd out of my mind it does highlight the character of the band and how they have mopped up music and pieced it together in their own way. When the track opens out it begins to grow on you. All this leads to a rather disappointing “Erased” that rounds the album off. It’s a strong well written song with plenty of potential but on this cut it misses something.

The Treat have knocked on enough doors and delivered an imaginative collection of styles and influences. Rooted firmly in the music of past generations it is served up with huge dollops of personality. It will be interesting to see where they take it all from here.

Visit The Treat's Official Web Site for newsand information on the band.

Jeff is a writer who lives in France. He writes DVD inserts, reviews, and has had a book published about David Byron of Uriah Heep. He is 'busy' exploring the rock scene in Europe with his wife Debbie and dog Dylan. It's Dylan that does the writing of course. There are two series to check out - Eurorock & Classic Eurorock.
Keep reading for information and comments on this article, and add some feedback of your own!

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Phonography Phonography
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Music Review: The Treat - Phonography
Published: September 19, 2008
Type: Review
Section: Music
Filed Under: Music: Rock
Part of a feature: Eurorock
Writer: Jeff Perkins
Jeff Perkins's BC Writer page
Jeff Perkins's personal site


Metal Perspective Review
The Treat - "Phonography"
[Rockular Recordings, 2007]
The Treat - Phonography
01. Fanfare for the King
02. Make You Crawl
03. The Deathday Parties
04. Bolivian Diary
05. Roaming
06. Meadowland
07. Haitian Mourning Dress
08. Too Late
09. Clutching at Jagged Glass
10. Effervescence
11. Black Cat Whites
12. Erased
13. The Wedge

The Treat come from Oxford, England and "Phonography" is their second release. They seem to belong to the same league with The Answer and Voodoo Six in terms of common influences (70s driven hard rock), however they are not as one-dimensional as their colleagues. The classic rock sound of Uriah Heep, Led Zeppelin and Deep Purple may be their musical keystone, yet they don't confine themselves to it. The first two tracks is the living proof of how Soundgarden would sound if they were releasing albums in the early seventies and The Byrds would be proud to call them their sons on "Meadowland". There's also some pure blues dose on "Haitian Morning Dress" that's being accompanied by some Cream hints (or Rod Stewart's Maggie May if I dare to say this) on "Too Late", which by the way is certainly one of my favorite songs. Wait, the painting hasn't been completed yet. 60s psychedelic progressive springs from "Effervescence" and "Black Cat Whites", which blends Gong with Zappa, to assure us that The Treat have a treat for all vintage rock fans out there. This fact is proven also by the cover artwork, the booklet (lyrics included) and even by the disc appearance that is very similar to Decca logo used for classical music releases. There is of course an indie direction on a couple of songs, something unnecessary and boring in my opinion.

Overall, seems they have absorbed their influences and, even though this multidimensional sound of theirs might have caused trouble regarding the cohesiveness of the final result, however they managed to avoid the trap. I think that time is on their side and the future prospects are quite promising.

Rating: 7/10 Reviewer: Stefanos Lountzis

Rating Guide

Band info
Hard Rock


Official Website(s):

Label's Website(s):

Current Line-up
Mike Hyder (Guitars, Vocal)
Dom Lash (Bass, Keyboards)
'Purple' David Hart (Drums, Tabla, Bass Clarinet)
Agent 555 (Single) [2005]
In Technicolor [2006]
Phonography [2007]




The Treat - Phonography Print E-mail
Written by Celtic Bob   
Friday, 13 June 2008
The Treat

2008, Rockular Recordings
Rating: 3.5/5


From out of the UK come The Treat with their sophomore release. PHONOGRAPHY is the follow-up to 2004’s IN TECHNICOLOR which received some fantastic reviews.

Sounding like Daltry of The Who at times, singer Michael Hyder hold’s his own. His smooth voice mixed with the acoustic guitar and mid tempo songs sets the apart from the other “The” bands. Upon receiving this release I was expecting your typical “The” indie rock band music but I was pleasantly surprised. The music is good and very enjoyable and has received countless spins on player thus far. A few of the standout songs include “Reaming”, “Meadowland” and “Too Late”.

Check these guy’s out as they will be big sooner rather than later.







The booklet shows this CD isn't a Metal CD. Nevertheless we, from Metal To Infinity, are feeling the need for making a review about this release. I was critical at first but I admit this is a surprising CD.


To be honest this is a flexible trio of musicians who invited some guest musicians for these recordings. Their classic rock reminds me most of all to a more rocking and less Metal kind of Tesla or AC/DC. These lads surely know the history of Rock because also The Beatles and Pink Floyd seemed to be a source of inspiration. On some songs I even hear some grungy parts, like we heard tons of times before in the early nineties.


With only a few chords these guys wrote 'easy on the hear' music, sometimes a bit experimental, on other moments 'poppy' or even 'bluesy'. Sliding guitars are often heard and these rockers have for sure the talent for writing good songs. Don't expect finger fast guitars or devastating riffs but prepare for varied and even intelligent compositions with only a little bit of distortion on the guitars. In my opinion The Treat is a bunch of alternative guys who are honoring their idols from their youth years and far beyond. No, these guys have no original ideas but who are we, Metal heads, to criticize it because also our scene counts plenty of clones.


'Effervescence' for example is a very strong track with multiple varied elements, a 'free rocking' spirit and outstanding musicianship. No doubts these guys know how to play their instruments! I have the feeling, although I don't know these guys, they will not care about bad reviews and they shouldnet. The Treat needs to be proud on this release but they should also try to search their own path.


Michael Hyder, guitarist and singer, is a talented man, even an artist. He has a good voice, wide raging and strong enough. His guitar parts will not blow you away but will, instead, often make you quiet because theyere played with a  lot of feeling. The band also makes use of some classical instruments like the flute, harmonica and clarinet and as usual that gives a special effect if therees no exaggerating.


Pure Metal Heads, who keep on denying all other music genres, shouldnet spend their money on this record. Open minded music fans, interested in some tentative Rock, should really give The Treat a chance because Iem sure there will be no disappointment.. My Points: 80/100 (review by Officer Nice)


The Treat

CD - Phonography

Play 90 second soundbite of 'Make You Crawl' @ 'CD quality'

In this indie age it would be all too easy to put The Treat into the indie pigeonhole! But, The Treat are more than just indie, The Treat shouldn't be tarnished with that 'get out' classification - The Treat probably nestle somewhere in the soft to heavy rock side of things and at times verge on the 'progressive' and occasionally drop into 'blues' mode. Typically British in feel and musical demeanour, The Treat play mature, cultivated rock for the more discerning ear!


Throughout this pretty epically sized album, all thirteen tracks of it, there's a feeling of empathetic unity and hard-nosed experience; the sound is solid but never nerve-jangling, the music is maturely crafted and superbly structured and The Treat give off an feeling of total professionalism and confidence without ever sounding cocky. The Treat sound as if they've been around the block a bit and learned a thing or three. 'Phonography' leaves me with a feeling that I've just been 'touched' by a more worthy entity - The Treat sound familiarly unfamiliar like I've known them for years when in fact this is my first encounter!

'Phonography' by The Treat is a very polished piece, an accomplished piece of work; there's plenty of variation here to keep the interest levels high, lots of light and shade to keep you 'on your toes'. Although The Treat mix it up pretty well here and offer something for almost everyone, they don't actually go anywhere totally new or 'uncharted' - there's nothing obviously innovative, experimental or professionally 'dangerous' here, just loads of subtle and very interesting genre-melding that sets them apart from the indie and rock 'norm'. Hey, that's fine, in fact it's quite cool coz The Treat stay nicely within the bounds of reality, they remain totally believable and quite tangible. What The Treat do, they do bloody well and 'Phonography' is an impressive and accomplished album that's easy to enjoy and a real worker that slowly grows on you with repeat listens.

'Phonography' kinda puts me in mind of all that was good about 70's prog rock - very early Genesis, Jethro Tull, Caravan, that kinda thing but obviously with a modern twist - now that can't be bad can it!! The Treat have impressed me no end with 'Phonography' - this is a big album from a hefty outfit that pack quite a punch when they need to but can also do subtle and understated. 'Phonography' by The Treat is a slightly unusual beast - just different enough to stand out from the crowd but never straying too far from safety!! The more I hear, the more I like - very very tasty, very very enjoyable - quite a cracker actually!!! No, I lie, it's better than that - it's a little beauty!!

Peter J Brown aka toxic pete (



THE TREAT from the UK are all about Classic Rock, with their debut CD sounding very close to bands like UFO, URIAH HEEP, THIN LIZZY, DEEP PURPLE in the 1970s. ‘In Technicolor’ was the band’s debut album, released in 2004 and it seems like now is the right time to release a follow-up, which musically should also interest fans of bands like FOO FIGHTERS, THE DARKNESS, QUEENS OF THE STONE AGE, THE ANSWER, WOLFMOTHER, because THE TREAT has a sound not far removed from such popular bands. 11 tracks are included and most of them are pure uptempo 70s Hardrocksongs, with here and there an exception (“The deathday parties”), but overall sounding quite close to the URIAH HEEP of the 1970s, with some DEEP PURPLEish influences and also TRAPEZE, MOTT THE HOOPLE and WILD HORSES and such typical 70s British Rock comes to mind when listening to THE TREAT. With a catchy tune like “Roaming” the band has a hit on their hands! Definitely a great band to check out, highly recommended to fans of Classic 70s British Rock/Hardrock. More info at:  and e-mail at: 

(Points: 8.0 out of 10)


(Review by Gabor Kleinbloesem) 

To the reviews index

Rockular 2007
As retro as it sounds, it's all about the future sounds.

Four years on since their spectacular debut, the Oxford trio might be in the same place geographically, but they've moved on music-wise. While most of the modern rock crop take on the superficial gloss of the '70s, this bunch dig deeper to the basics: the opening Eastern-flavored motif captures a listener by the throat before dipping into the swampy riffage of "Fanfare For The King" with a neat neo-classic lace woven into its fabrics. But even this doesn't prepare the ears for the "Haitian Morning Dress" pure, harmonica-oiled country blues as well as for vibrant instrumental "Effervescence".

The song titles say it all: with all the seriousness of the music, the humor pumps the gears here, but there's no showing-off from the band leader Michael Hyder who sets a perfect gutar-and-voice unison in the edgy "Make You Crawl" and has a good time in the infectious romp of "Roaming", it's the old-school lessons learnt-well and re-imagined for the new age, and what a groover the dynamics-exploring "Bolivian Diary" is! Growing on with every spin, "Phonography" is one of the best albums of the year.


Dmitry Epstein                                                                      Let It Rock                                            



Those who enjoy the moment in time when beat became psych should certainly find much to savour on ‘Phonography’, the new album from The Treat. Opening with a heavy eastern-sounding riff, ‘Fanfare for the King’ kicks things off magnificently before ‘Make You Crawl’ displays defiantly beat tendencies in its riffery. Thing continue in a similar vein until ‘Meadowland’ shifts gears, a gentle psych nursery rhyme with a fine arrangement. From here on in the album gets more varied with some fine freakout guitar on ‘Effervescence’ the icing on the cake, although the short but wonderful ‘Black Cat Whites ‘ deserves a mention too. The cover pushes all the right buttons as well making for an excellent overall package that hits the spot. (

This review was  published in Rumbles for November 2007  and was brought to you by Simon Lewis. Artwork, layout & editing: Phil McMullen.  © Terrascope Online 2007



Treat - Phonography

Buy a copy of Treat - Phonography here.

Find out more about Treat here

Musical phonograffitti!
Mon Nov 26 21:57:31 2007

Click the image for a full gallery

Rated 11 out of 13 [

by Jim Ody

Click here for more

reviews by this writer.

Oxford's hard rocking band, The Treat, come storming out with what is the usual 'awkward second album' after their great debut, 'In Technicolor' a couple of years back. 'Phonography' is a good follow up album, and when you have already delivered a musically strong debut, it's difficult to know what to do next. Do you follow the same formula with another ten hard-rocking '70's influenced classic rock tracks, or do you branch out and take a few risks? This is obviously a questioned that came rather easily to Mike Hyder, who is not only the singer but the driving force behind the band.

First song, 'Fanfare For The King' has an extremely long intro, which is a theme that tends to run through this album. Sometimes you wish bands would just get on with the song, however in this case it only adds to the charm of the band. This is a band that tips it's hat off to classic guitar-led rock of the '70's and '80's, and in the first song it kicks into a very Black Sabbath-esque stomper, with thick guitar riffs and a slight Ozzy-like vocal. The beat speeds up a bit more for the more stoner rock song, 'Make You Crawl' that nods it's head towards the likes of Queens Of The Stone Age mixed with Soundgarden. 'The Deathday Parties' has a nipple-hardening good beat whilst the song is a slower and more gentle number.

Mike's vocals turn very Robert Plant in, 'Bolivian Diary' that is pure Led Zeppelin whilst being sprinkled with political and socially aware lyrics. 'Roaming' is one of those songs that is simple but very successful. With it's keyboards and melodic guitars it's an instantly likeable song and one of the strongest here, which just goes to show that amongst all of the technically superior songs that have been layered and well crafted, it is the simplistic melodies and happy-go-lucky feel that makes this song so strong.

Next we have a song that I am undecided on whether it is a very good song or a big and unsuccessful risk. It's an acoustic song called, 'Meadowland'which has clever lyrics surrounding famous characters from nursery rhymes being stuck into days world. Like, " There was an old woman that lived in a shoe // She had so many bills, she didn't know what to do // Developers came and bought her home // Now her memories are rubble and stone" sings Mike. Things then turn to classic old school blues for 'Haitian Mourning Dress', and although the song is adequate, the problem that I have with lot of blues music is that it sometimes sounds like my old walkman when the batteries were on their way out. It's a slow plod of a song that is pure blues by numbers, and possibly nothing more.

The tempo raises up with the shuck and jive of 'Too Late' which is a little like The Black Crowes, before the chunky guitar riffs of 'Clutching At Jagged Glass' which is more like the band Clutch with added psychedelic breaks. 'Effervescence' is a chilled out mid-tempo instrumental before the no brainer and slightly bizarre song about the singers cat in, 'Black Cat Whites' which is a little bit like The Eels doing a slow Zeppelin before quick riff-ridden flashes of pure rock heaven. Again it's another of those songs that I'm left wondering whether or not it is a good idea. Apparently this was included to give a lyrical balance, though I'm not sure that it is more a case of over self-indulgence. The low and more rounded song of 'Erased' finishes up the album.

It's clear that with this second album, The Treat, have looked to break out of the box exploring a little more musically and stretching their wings to be a little more than a Led Zeppelin wannabe band. The music has a fair greater range, and as a whole the album is better produced showing a real maturity. The Treat know that they will never be a fashionable band, but it's clear that that is something that Mike has never cared much for as he travels on his musical journey stopping of to take in the sights of other genres periodically.

Anyone who loved 'In Technicolor' will not be disappointed, and along the way 'Phonography' is likely to pick up more than a couple of new fans. It's a good slice of classic rock and that can never be a bad thing.

Track Listing
01 - Fanfare For The King
02 - Make You Crawl
03 - The Deathday Parties
04 - Bolivian Diary
05 - Roaming
06 - Meadowland
07 - Haitian Mourning Dress
08 - Too Late
09 - Clutching At Jagged Glass
10 - Effervescence
11 - Black Cat Whites
12 - Erased


The Treat - Phonography


The Treat - Phonography (Release Year - 2007)

In 2007, Oxford trio, The Treat, have released their sophomore album, Phonography. This is the first Treat album that I have listened to, so I wasn’t sure what kind of sound to expect by this band. The Treat’s sound appears to be heavily influenced by 70’s hard rock. I can hear elements of Deep Purple, Led Zeppelin and Pink Floyd in the music.

As you can tell by the song titles, the song writing on this disc is much more than just your typical subject matter of sex, drugs and rock and roll. This disc requires a few listens before you can fully absorb what you are hearing.

I struggled with some songs, and others proved to get a little better with successive plays. Make You Crawl, and Too Late, are my favorite cuts, but those were the only ones that I could truly get into.

There have been quite a few newer bands adopting a 70’s hard rock sound, including the Answer, Thieves and Liars, Glyder and Wolfmother. The Treat’s Phonography lacks the polish that so many of the newer classic sounding bands have. For this listener, quite a few of the tunes on Phonography sound too dated. For some people, this will not be a problem. 70’s die hard rock fans will certainly enjoy this disc a little more than I did.

The Treat shows potential with this release, but Phonography isn’t going to set the world on fire.

You can check out several of the cuts below. You can purchase Phonography, at this link.

Rating:Out of 10

Track Listing:
Fanfare For the King
Make You Crawl
3. The Deathday Parties
4. Bolivian Diary
7. Haitian Morning Dress
Too Late
9. Clutching At Jagged Glass
11. Black Cat Whites
12. Erased
13. Track 13

The Treat is:

Mike Hyder - Guitars/Lead Vocals
Dom Lash - Bass/Keyboards
David Hart - Drums

by Rob Rockitt on July 2, 2008        www.hardrockhideout


THE TREAT – ‘Phonography’

Review by Deb

This was weird with a capital ‘W’.

The Treat’s guitarist must be commended for is commanding performance throughout this album, along with his band mates for their precise delivery, excellent heavy bass and powerful vocals which were far from ‘normal’ and displayed with versatile pitch and tone change.

‘Phonography’ has elements of emo and classic rock, with a modern twist I would attribute to the less than run of the mill vocal style.  Delivery is clean and clear, vocals are cocky and confident, and the guitar solos are mind blowing, until you get to the track entitled ‘Deathday Parties’, where the album starts to go a bit pear shaped.  ‘Phonography’ loses momentum at this point, slows down quite dramatically and the vocals begin to drawl.  Then we begin to climb again (bit like the Pepsi Max, this…) with ‘Bolivian Diary’ , which contains lots of sound effects, and some very twisted vocals – quite fast paced, with a blues overtone.  By now, the album had become more upbeat again, with a poppy overtone and cringing karaoke lyrics – exit the rock elements, enter an average, mainstream sound.  ‘Meadowland’ then took this in another direction, and it all got positively weird, with sparse, strumming guitar and vocals that sounded like Murdoch from the A-Team when he does his posh voice, and he’s singing about Nursery Rhyme characters……..  This was bizarre, to say the least, but there was more strangeness to come.  ‘Haitian Morning Dress’ was a country and western disaster song, with lyrics that were very fucking strange, ‘Clutching at Jagged Glass’ had great pace, but the chorus sent it all wobbly, ‘Effervescence’ was an instrumental with loads of flute playing – what the fuck is going on ??????

Then we get to the song about cats.  Yes, you just read that right – cats.  At this point, the vocalist is sounding positively eccentric, like he needs locking up, but then suddenly turns into a male Suzi Quattro, and then quickly back to Mr Insano.

Twelve tracks of head frying madness.  Make of it what you will……



First Album


"Infectious, arresting pop-tinged hard rock with a dose of the blues. A remarkable proposition".- Martin Popoff (Author ’Top 500 HM Songs of All Time')

The band's debut album, In Technicolor, does not simply evoke general comparisons to the gods of classic rock -– it is classic rock, direct and unmitigated. - Ink19 (Florida, USA)

“It sounds fresh & completely different from anything in the UK” - Strutter (Holland)

 "Like a breath of the fresh stuff to have a band that play music straight from the heart, tapped directly into the real roots of rock....they have bundles of integrity for classic rock, and Lord, do they play it well!" - Room Thirteen (UK)

“Full marks for non-stop energy and enthusiasm. 2004’s answer to the Darkness” - Oxford Courier (UK)

"A cross between Zeppelin and The Clash, not only in terms of style, but also in it's depth. Unlike many modern bands, The Treat know a way with a melody" - Let It Rock (Israel)

“This is bloody brilliant ! The epitome of "driving music". If you're ever on the road, this is one of the albums to have blasting out the open window" - Daily Vault (USA/Canada)

"A competent band with much to recommend. Tracks such as the pacey, straightforward rock of 'Burnin'', The pumping pace of 'Rock You', and the excellent head bobbing 'Let's Get Beautiful', show a style and maturity that point to good things ahead for the band".  - Powerplay (UK)

'A commendable start...well worth checking out'.

Rock Something (UK)

"A bravery of sound and one hundred percent rock'n'roll attitude make The Treat look like no other hard rock band". - Metal Kings (Russia)

"I found these tunes rolling through my head all day" - Music Mayhem (USA)

“A ten track slab of tough guitars, and catchy melodies“ - Oxford Mail (UK)

“Classic hard rock elements, with a fresh & modern sound. An album that will lift your spirits from the moment you press ‘play’” - Rock Pages (Greece)

"Consistently stylistic with their music, mixing Led Zep and Van Halen influences with pop-rock writing to create a great rock album" - This Is Not TV (Manchester, UK)

“This is dirty, greasy, beer sodden sore-throat-in the-morning rock & roll man!” - The Thread (New Zealand)

"Hard Rock in the vein of AC/DC, with a little bit of the Beatles" - From The Underground (Germany)

"The music is bright and spirited, with strong, clear vocals, reminiscent of the Stones at their best. Bands like this exist to make you happy. They succeeded in my case” - Oxford Bands.Com (UK)

"They’re more Stones than The Strokes or The Hives could muster" - Smother (USA)

"A solid basis, for forthcoming steps" - Barikada (Bosnia)

"Amazing. This band is 99% of the time NWOBHM" - Georgios Sidiropoulos (Rock DJ, London, UK)

'These songsters of music show to own enough personality to challenge the chart champions of  rock -The Silent Scream (Italy)

Keep the great music coming! - iSOUND.COM

“The Treat” kick out cleanly executed, tight fitting, classic rock but have added a modern style to it. - Hard Rock House (UK)

Full Reviews Below

Treat - In Technicolour

Find out more about Treat here

The treat you can have between meals!
Wed Jan 11 05:02:05 2006
Rated 10 out of 13 [
In Technicolour
Click the image for a full gallery
by Jim Ody
Click here for more
reviews by this writer.

Despite my feelings towards Oxford United, the city of Oxford is a nice place and The Zodiac is a great venue, however Oxford band The Treat are, well to be quite frank, an audio treat! With the airwaves still riding high on the popular trash of recent guitar-lead indie it's like a breath of the fresh stuff to have a band that play music straight from the heart, tapped directly into the real roots of rock. Sometimes rock'n'roll, sometimes rhythm and blues - The Treat deliver a rockin' good time!

First song 'Burning' starts off with a great classic rockin' riff a little like AC/DC, however if I may be a little critical, for me, Mike's vocals sound as though they need more 'umph' - by that I mean it's almost like the sound is a little low and so he's not quite bellowing out like a guy who's "Burning rock'n'roll" should!

There's something very Sixties about 'Don't Think Twice', which sounds just right. Past single 'Agent 555' is a little Black Crows-esque, which is always a bonus with me. Mike's voice sounds at its strongest when singing the original r'n'b - the one that doesn't feature scantily clad dark skinned females shakin' their booties, which isn't to say that I am not averse to listening to said music nor depriving myself of such viewing pleasures.

The album's anthem song 'Rock You' has chugging guitars and more than one opportunity to raise your fists and yell! 'Let's Get Beautiful' has Poison riffs and a party-rock feel even mentioning rock lines like, "Let's do the rattlesnake shake!" Pure genius.

'Silver Eye' nods its head towards Led Zepplin with its psychedelic rock and hallucinogenic lyrics guaranteed to have you swaying from side to side or tapping your feet. The 70's classic rock moment near the end is purely majestic. This may not be an original sound but hats off to Mike Hyder, Bassist Andy Sutton and the drumming skills of John Halliday, this is what music is all about.

'The Hunger' sounds almost a little like Blind Melon, and 'Nightclubbing' could well be Soundgarden doing a Zepplin tribute.

Having already spent 8 consecutive weeks as the best album in London Skywave Radio's chart, it's easy to see the appeal for some of that classic rock sound to be brought back to life again.

The Treat will not be groundbreaking, and they may not be cool, however what
they have bundles of is integrity for classic rock, and Lord, do they play it well! So raise your fist and get ready to strum your air guitar, those great days are back again, and this time it's a real treat...


Track Listing
01 - Burnin'
02 - Don't Think Twice
03 - Agent 555
04 - Rock You
05 - Let's Get Beautiful
06 - 24/7
07 - Silver Eye
08 - The Hunger
09 - Nightclubbing
10 - Hypertonic


The Treat -'In Technicolor'

(Rockular Recordings)

"A strange, entirely unique mix between the NWOBHM and The Darkness. Infectious, arresting pop-tinged hard rock with a dose of the blues. A remarkable proposition, The Treat sound like a NWOBHM band with pop sensibilities".

Martin Popoff
(Author : The Top 500 Heavy Metal Songs Of All Time)                                                    



The UK was always very important in the Hardrock/Metalscene, but ever since the early 1990s it seemed like there wasn’t any good new band coming from the UK. The 1990s were a horrible time when it comes to good quality British bands, and in 2003 we even got a very average band called THE DARKNESS who went onto having huge success, although they had a singer who absolutely can not sing! In these desperate times you are longing back to the early 1980s when thousands of new NWOBHM bands came to the scene, and only MAIDEN, SAXON and TYGERS OF PAN TANG survived the 2 following decades. Anyway, now there’s a new band called THE TREAT, and they play a mix of early 80s NWOBHM, Melodic Rock and Poprock. It sounds fresh and completely different than anything else in the UK. Without a doubt, this sounds much better than THE DARKNESS. The lead singer can sing and the songs are catchy, with as highlights great uptempo melodic rockers like “Burnin’”, “Rock you”, “24/7” and “The hunger”. Finally, a good new band from the UK, let’s hope they will get some attention from the British media, and turn one of the above mentioned songs into a huge hit. Almost forget to mention that the band in general reminds me of the early 80s UK acts DEADRINGER, NIGHTWING, RAGE, GEORDIE and EXPORT, so you know a bit what to expect from this little band.

(Points: 8.0 out of 10)

Gabor Kleinbloesem                                                                          Strutter (Holland)
In Technicolor
Rockular Recordings 2003

Treat yourself to some colourful rock : complicated it ain't.

It takes three to do that, you know? What with the latest tendency of rocking duos, they're more about pretension which leaves little space for real music and humour, and the Oxford trio masters both. The artwork - even the CD itself remindful of the Atlantic Records LP label - tells about the latter, while the former, driven by Mike Hyder's guitar and voice, takes a listener on a mindtrip to the times when rock 'n' roll was something primeval. Opening "Burnin'" is a good specimen of it, a cross between ZEPPELIN and THE CLASH, not only in terms of style, but also in it's depth. Unlike many modern bands, THE TREAT know a way with a melody - a garagey way theirs may be, yet bubbling with the same mid-60's energy that introduced technicolor to the sonic brew. "Hypertonic" lays it all out in declarative detail, and single "Agent 555" has enough wah-wah in the solo and vocal harmonies in the chorus to bite into the charts, so contract shouldn't be too far away. That may mean an end to Hyder's Rockular Recordings though.....but his combo deserve more. 

**** (4 out of 5 stars)

Dmitry Epstein                                                                      Let It Rock (Israel)



Oxford-based rockers The Treat are celebrating the release of their debut album this month.

Formed in 2001 by songwriter-guitarist Mike Hyder, the trio play classic hard rock and indie anthems laced with killer hooks.

After circulating an excellent three-track demo among promoters, it wasn't long before the band were gigging extensively across the country and playing dates in prestigious London venues.

The Treat began this year with a live TV appearancre on Channel Six - The Oxford Channel where they performed a staggering rendition of their first single 'Agent 555'.

Amazingly, the band even found time to record at Shonk Studios in Bicester - with ex-Candyskin John Halliday - and release the resulting album on their own Rockular recordings.

Featuring 'Don't Think Twice' , 'Rock You' and live favourite 'Silver Eye', 'In Technicolor' displays a diverse range of styles reflecting the band member's eclectic tastes and backgrounds.

Together with drummer Mark Thomas and newly-recruited bassist Nuno Lourenco, the band intend to embark on a winter promotional tour - with home dates promised!

'In Technicolor' was made to be played loud and gets full marks for non-stop energy and enthusiasm from us.

It is available now in all good record shops and more information on The Treat can be found at Check them out NOW, before they become 2004's answer to The Darkness!

Marc West                                                                                Oxford Courier (UK)






The Treat

Rockular Records, 2003




Review by: Riley McDonald

Originally published: January 6, 2004

 I'll admit I'm definitely not a fan of post-1992 rock n' roll, but when I slid this CD into my walkman, I was taken aback. "This is bloody brilliant!" I proclaimed, temporarily disrupting the English lesson. When the teacher turned back to continue some gammer lesson-err-another, I returned to this excellent British rock trio.

 As soon as the opening drum beats, chords, and vocals kicked, the first word that came to my head was "The" immediately followed by "Beatles." The opening track ("Burnin'") was like a cooler, updated version of the rock legends' magnum opus, "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band." All other tracks on here are just as good, if not better, and the epitome of "driving music." If you're ever on the road, this is one of the albums to have blasting out the open window.

 The guitar is the shining star of this album. The chord  playing can be very light and fun, as seen in the intro of "24/7" (which, to me, is also the best song on the album), but can also be very heavy, such as the song "Silver Eye." And the melodic leads flow perfectly (the ending lead in "The Hunger" is proof). The drumming is very well-done as well. While not overly difficult, it reminds me of the classic British rock bands of the '60s.

 As for problems with the album, there are only two trivial ones I can find. The first is the bass, which is very hard to hear, but I'm used to the bass not being very prominent, so it doesn't bother me…too much. The other is the lyrics, which at times can be fairly shallow and redundant, but I can look past those for the most part as well.

 Since I haven't been in touch with the rock releases of this year (or the past five years, for that matter) I can't say for sure this would be one of the best, but if the best the big labels had to release were Nickelback and Avril Lavigne, then yes, this would and should definitely be topping lists. I recommend this to any fans of The Beatles looking for something new, or rock fans in general.


© 2004 Riley McDonald and "The Daily Vault."          Daily Vault (USA/Canada)




The Treat

In Technicolor


“The Treat” is a hard rock band from Oxford, trying to include in their playing hard rock riffs, indie tinged grooves and pop vocal harmonies.

“The Treat” were found in 2001 in Oxford. The following two years they made a series of  live shows in Oxford, London, Leicester, Dudley, supporting Ken Hensley, Cambridge, and Birmingham.

In 2003 they released their first single “Agent 555”, which was circulates among local media. And recently, the LP is finally out. «In Technicolor» has all the characteristics of the musical taste of the band and its basic composer and guitarist, Michael Hyder, and this is obvious throughout the album…

The album is mostly hard, with fast rhythm and catchy refrains, which will easily stick in your head. It has classic hard rock elements but it also sounds fresh and modern. The opening track, “Burnin’”, is getting you straight to the point. A song that was made for the car (or at least that’s where I listen to it). The rest of the album goes on with the same style: Mid tempo to fast and very fast riffs and rousing refrains. Also, all the solos of the guitar are ideally fit in the songs, without breaking its flow. It’s an album that you are certainly going to like.

One day, I tried to put one song of “In Technicolor” for a friend to listen to. I realized that I could not distinguish which one was better than the rest. Most of them can be listened very easily and will lift your spirits from the first moment you press “Play” on the cd-player. I think that most of the songs would be perfect for live. Anyway, I finally chose “The Hunger” as the best track in the album, but the same thing I could say for at least another 6 songs of the 10-track album.

It’s worth the listening.

George Anasontzis                                                                            Rock Pages (Greece)


Underground Bands

Centred around Oxford based guitarist and songwriter Mike Hyder, three-piece outfit The Treat have spent much of the last two years gigging up and down the UK, playing venues such as the Garage and the Hope & Anchor in London and a support with ex Uriah Heep man Ken Hensley. A feast of 70s style rock, their debut album, "In Technicolor", was launched in October. Highlighting a competent band with much to recommend, tracks such as the pacey straight forward rock of  "Burnin'", the pumping pace of "Rock You", and the excellent head bobbing of  "Let's Get Beautiful"    show a style and maturity that point to good things ahead for the band.

Mark Hoaksey                                                                                      Powerplay (UK)



<the treat> <"in technicolor"> <rockular recordings>

In case you have been living in Siberia for the past twelve months the UK music industry has been seized by the snakelike grip of old fashioned rawk music. In a movement led by The Darkness we are told that rock is now cool again (when wasn't it?) and the doors are open to bezillions of other bands to come and rock out for the record buying masses.

One of these bands is The Treat, a three piece from Oxford which has already earned the plaudit "2004's answer to The Darkness" and who are doing very well in all kinds of places ranging from the UK to Chile.

I would be very wary of any band compared to The Darkness but in The Treat's case I can see the reviewer's point. "In Technicolor" does sound very retro in its approach to its music. When the album launches into opening song "Burnin'" the guitar part almost sounds like Iron Maiden and the vocalist has a clarity in his words that I haven't heard since Ian Anderson picked up a flute and formed Jethro Tull. The one major difference between The Treat and The Darkness is that where The Darkness are all the flamboyance and pomp The Treat are much more a denim and leather band - perhaps playing Saxon to The Darkness's Kiss.

All the songs on this album are proper old skool rock with lyrics about cars, girls, drugs and rock 'n' roll. The melodies are simple and solid and at times sound almost poppy because of their light tuneful verses and choruses. The band are consistently stylistic with their music mixing Led Zep and Van Halen style influences with pop-rock writing to create a great rock album. It's also interesting to note how honest the band are in their songwriting. Whilst much new rock music is hitting a much younger demographic this album definitely has a more mature feel to it. Whereas the over 35's at gigs these days are often the parents stood at the back looking out for their children, you really feel like if you went to see The Treat, the grown ups would be the ones up front (which is how it should be).

"In Technicolor" is a very honest very rockin' set of songs and it's also an album that never tries to be something it's not. It's all about old skool rock, un-PC lyrics and having a good time with a guitar. Not everyone will like it but those who do will be at The Treat's gigs every time the band come to town.

<emma farrer>

                                                                             This Is Not TV (Manchester, UK)


The Treat : In Technicolor
Review: This is my first review for, so I'm glad it doesn't have to be a bad one. These guys are pretty good! If you like straight ahead rock with a catchy, poppy feel, then check these guys out. There are a trio from Oxford, and you can tell they've been influenced by such bands as the Beatles. I found some of these tunes rolling through my head all day. Great guitar work, and good lyrics. The production quality on this CD was fantastic. I was blown away by how technically good it sounded. The case had a great cover, and complete liner notes with lyrics printed.
Favorite Tracks: "Don't Think Twice", "Agent 555","Let's Get Beautiful"
Least Favorite Track: "Silver Eye"
By Ryan Lane

The Treat

In Technicolor


Dissatisfied with every contemporary trend in rock music (and who can blame them?), The Treat have decided to shut their eyes and ears to the last few decades and pretend they never took place, going so far as to design a circular band logo straight out of the mescaline-laced '60s to complete the ruse. Likewise, the band's debut album, In Technicolor, does not simply evoke general comparisons to the gods of classic rock -– it is classic rock, direct and unmitigated.

For this Oxford-based three piece, rock 'n' roll was and still is a way of life; the other two components being the oft-mentioned sex and drugs. Listening to rock means waking up just before lunch on a stained mattress on the floor of a seedy apartment next to a blonde (dyed, of course), lighting a cigarette, taking a pull of what looks and smells like bourbon straight from the bottle and wondering just how the hell you got here after that killer show last night. The music on In Technicolor -- with all its unabashed homage to Sabbath, AC/DC, Zeppelin, Iron Maiden, et al -- celebrates that questionable existence. Meanwhile, Radiohead is finding new ways to criticize the crushing pointlessness of modern life just across town.

What The Treat do, they do very well. The opener, "Burnin'," is highly charged stuff, geared for the folks in the audience who came to rock. "Agent 555," the album's first single, is catchy and anthemic, especially for those looking to score some hard shit from the guy loitering in the gents' toilet. And so it would be a mistake to dismiss this outfit just because it happens to be so resolutely retro as to be unfashionable, even in these desperate, originality-starved times of ours. If you offer the devil sign (the two middle fingers held down by the thumb, pinkie and pointer extended) without irony when something pleases you, enjoy more than your fair share of air guitar in mom's full-length mirror, drive around in a beat-up auto while yelling flirtatious obscenities at girls out the passenger window and consider Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure the apex of cultural achievement, The Treat will fit your musical bill exactly. The same goes for listeners who tend to deviate from this callous stereotype slightly. Not surprising, angst-ridden fans of Limp Bizkit, Hundred Reasons, Linkin Park and the like won't find much here. Neither will the dance crowd. But should straightforward rock 'n' roll hedonism ever regain its once-lofty status, The Treat might even recruit a few converts from among their ranks.

Eric J. Iannelli                                                                            Ink19 (Florida, USA)



In Technicolor
The Treat
Reviewed by Adam Harrold

Tracks:Burnin', Don't Think Twice, Agent 555, Rock You, Let's Get Beautiful, 24/7, Silver Eye, The Hunger, Nightclubbing, Hypertonic.


Admittedly, “In Technicolor” has been around for some time now, but upon discovering a decent British rock album it often seems a little irresponsible not to tell others. If attention isn’t drawn to as many good new rockers as possible, then it could well be that we’ll see the country fall under the dark veil of musical bollocks once more. And since the noughties (for want of a better word) has so far been very welcoming to so many rock bands, it’s about time you were introduced to The Treat.

Dabbling with the sound of the Rolling Stones, AC/DC and even a little bit of The Beatles, The Treat manage to tread a well-worn but let’s face it popular path. Main man Mike Hyde’s vocals might not be as distinctive as Jagger, but he certainly knows how to lay down a fat guitar riff – see “Hypertonic” – which more than gets him off the hook.

“Burnin’” and “Agent 555” are two other highlights from an album that has much to recommend it by. Both songs have memorable choruses which no doubt explain the regular radio plays that both songs are receiving at the moment. It’s difficult to say where The Treat will go from here, but “In Technicolor” is a debut release that is well worth checking out. Hopefully the next album, being recorded this summer, will build upon this commendable start. © 2005


In Technicolor (Rockular Recordings)

Oxford rockers The Treat bring their hard-edged indie music to the Bullingdon on Sunday, to promote their new album In Technicolor.

Mike Hyder and his band have attracted comparisons with the Stones, Neil Young and even a poppy AC/DC.

The band play original material, with the emphasis on putting on a great live show.

Their album, recorded at Shonk Studios in Bicester, was released earlier this month on Oxford-based Rockular Recordings. A 10-track slab of everything you can expect from a Treat gig, it features tough guitar riffs, softer pop and catchy melodies.

Go on - treat yourself....

Tim Hughes                                                                                        Oxford Mail (UK)



 THE TREAT  " In Technicolor "                       ( Rockular Recordings )
               A new hope for the British rock scene is a band called The Treat.

They are a trio, lead by main person, author, composer and guitar player, Mike Hyder.
" In Technicolor" shows a group as a band with intensive indie attitudes. Their songs are mostly mid tempo, and the band musically cover impressive harmonies and a pop vocal style. Their lyrics are about women, fast cars and similar themes. They try to equalize urban psychology and a conventional mainstream approach with current, trendy media attitudes. They are very comparative with The Darkness, but that fact is not an advantage for the group.
               Generally, we can regard "In Technicolor" as a solid basis, for forthcoming steps.
               Rating : 7 / 10      

Bane Lokner                                                                              BARIKADA - BOSNIAN site/zine


In Technicolor
Rockular Recordings
melodic hard rock

This band seems to be a total newcomer in the world of hard rock music. At least no interactive or printed encyclopedia provides even a couple of words about the UK-based combo. Music-wise The Treat sounds like a cross between Aerosmith, Led Zeppelin and the more obscure glam rock likes of Jetboy. Sloppy and funny lyrics are surely taken from Steve Tyler and glamour-bands in general while the performance is obviously Led Zeppelin-ish. Most of the tracks sound brave and up-tempo but the lack of guitar attack and drum power make them sound like Poison (if it could have emerged in the 1970s) but nothing like KISS. At the same time such a bravery of sound and one hundred percent rock'n'roll attitude make The Treat look like no other hard rock band. If this sounds like you cup of whiskey - you may want to give this one a try. (Dead Ripper)

                                                                                                       Metal Kings (Russia)



Advance Three Track Promo of 'In Technicolor' :

Agent 555/Nightclubbing/Silver Eye

Back in the sixties, when Mr Fleetwood and Mr Mac were looking for a guitar player after their own guy had shot himself/got Jesus/busted (delete as appropriate), they were checking out a candidate called Peter Green, slogging away onstage at some godawful bloodletting-Tuesday-night-three-men-and-a-dog-spit-and-sawdust yowl-in. Mr Fleetwood points at Green and says: ‘Oi’ve heard enough, mate. That bloke only plays three chords.’ Mr Mac, clearly the brains of the outfit, strokes his not-insubstantial beard and returns: ‘Yeah. But don’t ‘ee play ‘em well?’

These were pretty much my reactions to The Treat. The group seem to have a legion of influences, mostly old and including AC/DC, Led Zep and the Chili Peppers. The latter is prominent on the single ‘Agent 505’,a driving and funky hymn of praise to the pharmaceutical inventory of said Agent. The music is bright, bouncy and spirited with strong, clear (although not always in tune) vocals, capped by a simple but effective chorus reminiscent of the Stones at their best. The best way to hear this is probably on the jukebox of the Gloucester Arms; I’m sure the rocking gentlemen of that establishment would give this number a fair wind. Let's hope the landlord’s reading this!

The next tune, ‘Nightclubbing’, is a disappointment. More hectic than ‘Agent’ but far less memorable melodically, it’s burdened by a tedious lyric, again devoted to artificial highs (haven’t these guys ever tried paintballing?). The motto of the band seems less ‘sex, drugs and rock n’roll’ than ‘drugs, drugs and a side order of garlic bread’. Fortunately, ‘Silver Eye’ picks up the slack. The Eye in question is a sort of Tolkienesque palantir (or Orwellian telescreen, if you’re sick of hobbits), probing our private lives and finding out our dirty little secrets (The Treat’s are, I fear, a stash of hard drugs and an overly-comprehensive collection of Foghat albums).

But anyway, bollocks to all this - does it rock? Hell, yes. A lumbering Brontosaurus of fuzz awakes and lollops away through the tundra, with the drummer and singer desperately holding onto its scaly tail for dear life. There’s another stonking chorus, a lyric of inspired Zep-style portentousness and the sort of guitar solo that can only be played with your tongue out.

The big criticism of The Treat is that they don’t do anything new - its all been done before, many a time. And yet, the same can be said for most modern bands, especially The Darkness, with whom The Treat are often compared. In the end, bands like this exist to make you happy. They succeeded in my case. Now where I put my bong?

By Colin MacKinnon                                                                       Oxford Bands (UK)




In Technicolor

The Treat give their hearts for guitar oriented rock.

The Opener “Burnin” reminds me of early Iron Maiden but, because of the production, its not really that “metal like”. If you go through the whole album you’ll find a mix of The Stones, The Clash and other British rock acts from the seventies.
From time to time composer, guitarist and singer Mike Hyder gives the songs a kind of blues feeling, Hard Rock in the vein of AC/DC
, with a little bit of the Beatles – and every track's got an independent touch. The groovy “Let’s Get Beautiful”, the more poppy “The Hunger”, which has a cool chorus and the up tempo song “Nightclubbing” are good and interesting but most of the time the songwriting has to be better to claim the next step on the ladder of success. 6/10

Hansy Heider                                                                         Metal District (Germany)

                                                 Also published in : From The Underground (Germany)



The Treat – In Technicolor

By Cameron Officer

In 2004, old is new and retro is refreshing. Reinventing some key musical concept that worked for someone 10, 20 or 30 years ago is the widely perceived ticket to chart success.

The Datsuns are The Stooges. Jet is The Small Faces. The Mars Volta is Emerson, Lake and Palmer. Beyonce Knowles is Donna Summer. The Rapture is Depeche Mode. Justin Timberlake is Michael Jackson and Robbie Williams is an assemblage of people including, but not limited to, Dean Martin, David Cassidy, Johnny Rotten and both Eric Morecambe and Ernie Wise.

If you want to get ahead of the rest of your rock n’ roll peers in 2004, go back to your dusty vinyl and do your homework.

And really, who can blame anyone for rummaging through the dress-up box, strapping on a guitar, donning tight trousers and a false beard and going, “For sooth! I am a musical genius with odd time signatures. My songs go on for three months and have titles like “Interrupted Archaic Mechanism”. I’m totally hip. I’m totally new. I’m totally now,” when all anyone with more than a passing interest in popular music is thinking, “Hey, that guy looks like Rick Wakeman from Yes. How interesting!”

Before you can whine about how no one is original anymore, they’re in the charts, getting huge press coverage and you’re nodding your head to their first single because – well, gosh darn it – it just sounds so catchy and different.

Cultural observers and psychologist types often point to this as an example of how we nostalgically yearn, in these troubled times, for simpler, sun- and fun-filled memories. We react positively to music that sounds like it was made two decades ago because it reminds us of being younger and carefree.

Justin Timberlake has brought funky, sweaty electro soul back to pop, for example. Outkast’s Andre 3000 has stepped outside the realms of hip hop and embraced, among other things, classic swing and jazz. The Darkness “Believe in a Thing Called Love”.

And The Treat’s Mike Hyder knows the soothing, exciting value of a power chord.

The Treat is a three-piece from Oxford who has just released their debut album, In Technicolor. Their press material doesn’t give away many indicators as to whom they’ve been compared with by those in the know, but like musical stalkers, they seem to follow in the footsteps of earlier rock bands, playing venues where many a famous shoe has trod before.

The Police, The Who, Elvis Costello and The Rolling Stones are all mentioned as having inhabited the same dance halls and pubs The Treat love to play in, so in a way there are no surprises as to what they’ll sound like before putting their CD in the stereo.

In a word; retro.

It’s tight fitting, cleanly executed, hard rock. It’s not world shaking but, in the same manner as the bullish, fat, three-day growth-sporting builder with 30 years experience and a hammer he calls ‘old faithful’, it gets the job done, without any fuss or bother or questions about occupational safety and health.

Over the course of In Technicolor’s 10 original compositions, The Treat display a competent pub rock style, somewhere between a heads down Status Quo and a straight backed Jam or Clash. Tracks like album opener “Burnin’”, melodic rocker “The Hunger” and “Agent 555” stick to a formula you can’t help but feel Hyder and his fellow band members feel very comfortable with indeed.

The Treat never really extend themselves beyond the expected, but it’s a retro sound, so the sudden introduction of samples or a cheeky melodica four tracks into the album is neither sought after or welcome. This is dirty, greasy, beer-sodden, sore-throat-in-the-morning rock n’ roll man!

Sometimes reinventing the musical wheel can work brilliantly, somehow resulting in a totally fresh sound and fooling punters to varying degrees as to the authenticity of the new product.

Radiohead have been underlining bits in the Cliffs Notes to Pink Floyd for years now and everyone (this reviewer included) thinks they’re geniuses for doing so. Supergrass were so obviously rehashing early Who that we didn’t care a jot and cheered them on for it. Oasis? Don’t get me started... but we bloody loved them for a few years there as well.

The Treat do what they do well, but the pub rock corner from which they’ve drawn reference isn’t as exciting a proposition as, say, Eels ripping off Burt Bacharach or a thinly veiled Sly & The Family Stone copyist.

Trends come and go though, and for all I know we could be on the verge of a Motorhead/Iron Maiden/Status Quo revival. At this point in time, however, I can’t see that particular retro revival providing The Treat with their transport to the top.

The good thing here though is, you get the feeling Hyder and Co. couldn’t care less about success – they’re too busy just having fun.

Like most people without the aid of small mirrors and a collection of drinking straws and biros’ sellotaped together, I can’t see round corners. But should ‘80s Judas Priest and Uriah Heep make a big mainstream comeback any time soon, you’ll be going to bigger venues than the local pub to see The Treat.

This article comes from Thread

The URL for this story is:


English band that plays NWOBHM and does that very well too! It's almost unreal that they do, but it is true!! I don't know if they ended up with that sound and style by accident, but the end result is NWOBHM indeed.

Georgios  Sidiropoulos                                                        Let It Rock Magazine (Germany/Greece)                                                


                         The Silent Scream                                            

    Artist The Treat   
  Title In Technicolor   
  Record Comp. Rockular Recordings   
  Year 2004   
  Lenght 36:01   
  Genre Rock   
  Vote 6,5  
Just get to an agreement. If The Treat really want to sell their sound for retro rock in the literal sense of the term, they won’t find in me an accomplice. After assimilating with devotion the word of Rolling Stones, Led Zeppelin, The Who and all the other glorious acts that wrote the history of rock, I find hard to see in the obvious easy listening of “In Technicolor” the stigmata of a sound which, for strong traditions, must be soaked into rebellion and shamelessness. Premised that and premised that at present I can’t stand all the groups whose name begins with “the”, this debut of the british band is an appreciable summary of provincial contestation rock: polished never too energetic sounds of strong English approach, seventies-like attitude, head among the clouds, rooted boots on earth. Well, ten fitting songs like “Agent 555” (first single), “Don’t Think Twice” and “Silver Eye” that can be listened without regrets or jumps. A light listening, but not bad: a sort of catharsis in tunes of a seventies rock world with extravagant trends, so fragile to risk to get broken like a played string with too much strength. Easy to realize how the band cares about the retro cause, with the croaking “Let’s Get Beautiful” and “Burnin’”, and they don’t even miss the class strike, that is the vaguely southern tasted bluesy homage to AC/DC (“24/7”). There’s who, in matter of old rock, is much more clever than The Treat (in the sense that can exploit this attitude better like The Darkness or The Jet), but these three songsters of the music that once was show to own enough personality to challenge with the chart champions of exhumed rock.

Flavio Ignelzi





The Treat - In Technicolour

Rating - 6.5/10

Review Don Gibbs

The Treat are a band that formed in 2001 in Oxford and then spent the majority of 2002 doing what all new bands need to do, trying to get as much exposure as possible by gigging the year away up and down the country.  They released their first single “Agent 555” in December of the same year and also began working on “In Technicolor”, their debut album, which was finally released in December of 2003.  The liner notes for the CD lists Mike Hyder, Andy Sutton and John Halliday as the musicians involved in this CD but I guess there must have been some changes made as their website states that the current players are Mike Hyder (Electric & Acoustic Guitars/Lead Vocal/Multi-Instrumentalist/Songwriting), Dom Lash (Electric Bass/Double Bass/Keyboards) and 'Purple' David Hart (Drums/Tabla/ Percussion/Bass Clarinet/Multi-Intrumentalist).  They are currently pushing for an autumn release of their new CD, which is why I think I was sent this CD to review, even though it has been doing the rounds for nearly 3 years already. 

On first listen I had a huge feeling of deja-vu, I was immediately transported back to the late 60’s/early 70’s style of pop rock/pub rock music.  The first comparison that came into my mind was the debut release from GENESIS – “From Genesis to Revelation”, although The Treat have not managed to do it quite as good as Messr’s Gabriel et al.   

The first track on the album, “Burnin”, starts off with a great rock riff which could be compared to the likes of AC/DC, “Don’t Think Twice” is a definite 60’s throwback with faster rhythms and quite a catchy refrain which leads onto their initial single “Agent 555” which has some Black Crows influence in it.  The 4th track on the album is what has been classed as the albums anthem song, “Rock You”, which is probably one of the better tracks with its chugging guitars and dominant drums however my favourite track is “Silver Eye” which takes a lot of inspiration from the psychedelic sounds and hallucinogenic lyrics that Led Zepplin blessed us with previously. 

This is an album with a definite retro feel to it, almost as if they are trying to re-invent the musical wheel and turn back time to the days when British Rock ruled the world.  Some of the reviews done when “In Technicolor” was initially released in 2003 were classing these guys as the new Sabbath/Motorhead/Iron Maiden rolled into one, but you must remember that this release came out at the time when those Rock Icons The Darkness (sarcasm rules) were at their height of popularity so it was pretty obvious that the Rock genre had lost it’s way a little and I think that the public were desperate for someone to knock them off their perch and would clutch at any straws available. 

“The Treat” kick out cleanly executed, tight fitting, classic rock but have added a modern style to it.  If I was to make any sort of criticism at all it would be to say that while Mike has a fairly decent voice, it needs a bit more meat to it so that he can do justice to the rockier sound they are trying to produce.  These guys are not going to be world shakers, their albums won’t be ground breaking and a lot of people may not look on them as cool, but they do produce a fairly decent sound. 

Overall I would say that this is a mediocre release which isn’t really going to amount to too much, but with a bit more musical maturity they could, if they tweaked things up a bit, go on to bigger and better things.  At the same time they could also completely cock things up and fade into obscurity.  I wait for their next release to see which path they are taking!


Track List

Don't Think Twice
Agent 55
Rock You
Let's Get Beautiful
Silver Eye
The Hunger

Line Up

Mike Hyder - Guitars/Vocals
Dom Lash - Bass/Keyboards
David Hart - Drums



The Treat - In Technicolour (Rockular Recordings Ltd.)

T: Well, whilst I like what the band are doing, mixing Led Zeppelin with Wire and calling in Uriah Heap every now and again, I really DON'T like the production on this album. It sounds way too clean, yet somehow sounds rather muddy at the same time. I realise that's something of a misnomer but hey, I know what I mean! The songs are well constructed, and I can see many of the comparisons made previously by various webzine writers (The Clash, AC/DC and Van Halen in particular) so it's a release that makes me want to see the band live, because I suspect they will come across far better than they do on CD.

N: To be honest, listening here, I found this a little too "comic book". The songs just came across with less impact than I felt they deserved, almost as if this band could perform to a script, somewhat like the Monkees did in the sixties. But hey, it got THAT band noticed! 6/10




'AGENT 555'


(Rockular Recordings)

7/10 - An all round winner.

The Treat

British Rock is the order of the day, courtesy of The Treat. A treat eh? Well I'll be the judge of that methinks.

'Agent 555' is caught up in sixties, not just conceptually but with harmonious melodies that could have come from The Byrds and an open style of drumming to match. The backing vocals towards the end of the track add some of the seventies styles that The Feeling are currently breathing back into life and altogether it's good enough to deserve the treat label.

A tad faster and with a more prominent lead vocal, 'Hypertonic' is another retrospective belter with a crazy fast chorus lyric and a smouldering solo.

The Treat are like poppier cousins of The Delays, bringing to life one of Britain's finest decades with plenty of contemporary slant to the songs despite the re-born components. This is music from a time where it was a whole lot of fun and it's worth taking a moment to enjoy Agent 555.

Written By: Saur (3695 - More Information) View The Mag Team

Date: 02/07/2006


After a 3 minute episode of jamming to your music we have approved Agent 555 for distribution on iSOUND.COM.

This means your song is now available on all sections of our website in addition to your artist site.
Keep the great music coming! Live Life Loud  Max (Content Manager) - iSOUND.COM



Live Reviews

"AC/DC with pop overtones" - HOPE & ANCHOR, Music Venue (London,UK)

"Very Stones-y" - THE UNDERWORLD, Music Venue (Camden, London, UK)

"Promise of melody and rhythm from The Treat" - Oxford Mail (UK)

"Neil Young inspired melodic rockers" - Nightshift (Oxford, UK)


Radio Play Lists

'The following tracks have already been in rotation and were received well by my listeners - Hypertonic, Let's Get Beautiful, and Nightclubbing. I am currently featuring Agent 555. Thanks for turning me (and my listeners) on to this refreshing new band'. -DJ Ajay


KAOSFM, Australia


ROCK FM , Greece

RADIO RASA, Switzerland





KGFN, El Cajon, California, USA

WRHU, New York, USA

CIUT, Radio Toronto, CANADA

KAOS, Olympia, Washington, USA

KBVU The Edge Indie Show, Iowa, USA

SYN FM, Dive Into My Adam's Apple Show, Victoria, AUSTRALIA

SYN FM, Music To My Ears Show, Victoria, AUSTRALIA


The Treat are also listed on the site