Monday, 23 January 2017

Carnival Club / Kashmere / Crimsons - Manchester Soup Kitchen - 21st January 2017



Saturday afternoon and night saw the first Lucoo all-dayer in Soup Kitchen with eight bands on the bill. Due to other commitments we were only able to catch three in the early evening, but with Carnival Club, Kashmere and Crimsons, we struck lucky.

Track Of The Day : Ist Ist - Silence


Ist Ist are a band on an unstoppable rise. Already famed locally for their incendiary and often controversial live shows, the three-piece have just released the video to their new single Silence ahead of their now sold out show at Salford's Sacred Trinity Church on February 3rd. We exclusively tipped the song on Shell Zenner's Amazing Radio show a couple of weeks back, but now it's online in all its doom-laden glory.

The Strawberries / The Assist / Jordan Allen / April / Dantevilles / White Room - Manchester Night And Day (This Feeling Big In 2017) - 21st January 2017




This Feeling club nights have become a thing of urban legend in music circles, the night that all bands want to get on as a stepping stone to bigger things. To see in 2017, they've set up Big In nights to showcase new talent that they believe will make an impact this year and we caught up with six of the eight bands on the Manchester bill on Saturday night at the Night And Day.

Sunday, 22 January 2017

Peaness / Cowtown - Manchester Soup Kitchen - 20th January 2017


A packed Friday night Soup Kitchen crowd were treated to two sets of contrasting brilliance from Chester three-piece Peaness and Leeds' Cowtown.

Saturday, 21 January 2017

The Vryll Society / Francobollo / Purple Heart Parade - Manchester Deaf Institute - 19th January 2017



The Vryll Society made a triumphant return to Manchester on Thursday night following last year's dual headliner with Hidden Charms at Gorilla. Throwing off front man Mike's throat infection that could have pulled the gig, they deliver a spellbinding set supported ably by Sweden-via-London's Francobollo and Manchester's own Purple Heart Parade.

Wednesday, 18 January 2017

Track Of The Day : Rhine Valley - Tell The Truth


Tell The Truth is the debut song from the mysterious two piece Rhine Valley.  They describe themselves as "Melody & Riddims. Explosive heavyweights" and reveal nothing else other than their names on their Facebook page. But one listen to Tell The Truth and the two dark mysterious playful one and three quarter minute snippets on their Soundcloud page and it's very quickly clear that they're going to be a force to be reckoned with.

Tuesday, 17 January 2017

October Drift - Manchester Night And Day Cafe - 15th January 2017


It's one of life's mysteries why October Drift are not much bigger than they are. One of the most visually thrilling live bands around, never standing still for a minute, either lost in the music or seeking to engage with and in the crowd, they brought their ever increasingly powerful live show to Manchester's Night And Day on a cold January night and swept away the cobwebs of the post-Christmas gig slowdown.

Thursday, 5 January 2017

Track Of The Day : Blaylock - Lighthouse


We don't know much about Blaylock other than Lighthouse is the debut single from the Manchester based artist. A piano based track, simple, plain and emotional, it lets the words and his voice do the bidding for it. It feels dramatic, heartfelt and genuine and hopefully the first work of a real talent.  It precedes an EP that's due out soon.

Saturday, 31 December 2016

Puppet Rebellion - The Pact EP


Rounding a successful year off with their most radio friendly EP yet, Puppet Rebellion demonstrate again that they deserve their place in the “next big thing” category.

Wednesday, 28 December 2016

EVEN THE STARS TIPS FOR 2017

As the year draws to an end, we reveal our top tips for 2017. Not necessarily bands that will make it to the top of the charts, but the bands that excite us for what they could achieve in the year.

Tuesday, 27 December 2016

The Tapestry - Ashton-Under-Lyne Witchwood - 26th December 2016


The final moments of The Tapestry's existence as a band are chaotic, shambolic, drunken and magnificent, with a full on stage invasion, equipment being knocked over and out and everyone singing along to Rode Your Luck, one of their finest tracks and a fitting epitaph to a foursome that were at their best in their riotous live shows that should have catapulted them to bigger and better things.

Monday, 26 December 2016

Jordan Allen / Stillia / Oddity Road / M60 - Manchester Ruby Lounge - 23rd December 2016



At the end of a successful year that leaves him on the brink of a breakthrough, Jordan Allen and his band came back to The Ruby Lounge for their Christmas party. Backed by a strong line-up of local bands queuing up behind them on the road to success, a riotous evening ensued. Alongside Jordan we also caught Stillia, Sheffield's Oddity Road and the very Mancunian M60.

Friday, 23 December 2016

Lanterns On The Lake - Interview


Live With Royal Northern Sinfonia is the winner of our Album Of 2016 listings. To celebrate we had a chat with Hazel from the band about how they came to record the album and their plans for the future.

EVEN THE STARS ALBUMS OF 2016 - FIVE TO ONE


The final five of our top twenty albums of 2016 have all been number one in the various versions of the list that have been written, crumpled up and thrown away, such is the closeness of the five. But here we present our final decision.

Thursday, 22 December 2016

Wednesday, 21 December 2016

EVEN THE STARS ALBUMS OF 2016 - FIFTEEN TO ELEVEN


We continue our countdown of our twenty favourite albums of the year with those we've placed in fifteenth to eleventh place.

Tuesday, 20 December 2016

EVEN THE STARS ALBUMS OF 2016 - TWENTY TO SIXTEEN


Our end of year album poll starts with a look at the records we placed at twenty to sixteen in the list. We'll continue our countdown five albums a day until Friday when we reveal our top five.

David Ford - London Bush Hall (Milk And Cookies) - 18th December 2016


Every year David Ford puts on a special event called Milk And Cookies in December to raise money for charity. It's no ordinary gig though, as the title suggests people bring milk and cookies to sell for donations, there's auctions, an interval and a selection of his own songs, some covers he's selected and others that are randomly picked from a book by members of the audience. It all sounds like it could go terribly wrong, but it never does thanks to Ford's ability to fashion covers of classic songs, guilty pleasures and some of his own favourites from his home-made looping machines and the most basic of kit.

Friday, 16 December 2016

Track Of The Day : One Way Song - Dr Spraza Lies


Back in August, we introduced One-Way Song and they're back with a new song called Dr Spraza Lies which represents a new direction for the project that morphed from a theatre project into a band. Scrapping their early work, including an almost-finished debut album, was a brave move, but if Dr Spraza Lies is anything to go by, their new approach is set to pay dividends.

Thursday, 15 December 2016

Track Of The Day : The Slowdown Family - Pomona


Pomona is the first fruits of the sessions that Liam Frost embarked on with The Slowdown Family once they got together earlier this year to perform their debut album Show Me How The Spectres Dance at Manchester's Deaf Institute earlier this year.

Track Of The Day : The Sundowners - Great Beauty


Great Beauty is the first single to be released from The Sundowners' forthcoming as-yet-untitled second album. The follow up to 2015's self-titled has been eagerly anticipated for some time now as they've been slowly revealing tracks at their live shows throughout 2016.

Tuesday, 13 December 2016

Festival Preview - When In Manchester


We don't do previews as a rule, but we'll make an exception for When In Manchester. It's a festival that was the brain child of four young women (Abi, Miriam, Ellen and Nicole) that ran their first successful event at Gullivers and The Castle back in April. Their second festival takes place at The Ruby Lounge on Saturday and promises ten up-and-coming acts across two stages, some of whose profile has already sky-rocketed since they were booked. It could be the last chance to catch some of them in such intimate surroundings and an excellent opportunity to show your support to young promoters taking on the big boys.

Sunday, 11 December 2016

James / The Charlatans / The Slow Readers Club - Liverpool Echo Arena - 10th December 2016



Perhaps the finest triple bill in recent history saw James, The Charlatans and The Slow Readers Club sell out Liverpool's Echo Arena on Saturday night. The evening saw collaborations during both sets with Tim and Andy of James helping The Charlatans cover Echo And The Bunnymen's Rescue and Tim and Mark of The Charlatans joining James on Laid. The Slow Readers Club had earlier played to a couple of thousand people on the foyer upstairs.

Saturday, 10 December 2016

James / The Slow Readers Club - Sheffield O2 Academy - 9th December 2016


The third night of James's short December tour rolled into Sheffield on Friday night and continued in the same vein as the previous two, with a set that varied considerably from the previous ones, resurrection of old favourites from the depths of their back catalogue and some of their biggest songs in one triumphant event. Support came from Manchester's The Slow Readers Club who look and sound completely at home on these bigger stages.

Thursday, 8 December 2016

James / The Slow Readers Club - Wolverhampton Civic - 7th December 2016


Day two of James' UK mini tour saw them return to Wolverhampton for the first time in nineteen years to the Civic. A set full of surprises and seven setlist changes from the previous night and a band at the peak of their powers in one of the best venues of this size in the country delighted a packed Black Country crowd. Support came from The Slow Readers Club.

Wednesday, 7 December 2016

Rocketship Forest - Fingerthief EP


The brief accompanying Rocketship Forest’s new EP Fingerthief states that the songs “wrestle with the themes of charlatan clairvoyants, alien abduction, riot mentality and pyromania” which was reason enough to have a listen to it and we weren’t disappointed.

James / The Slow Readers Club - Nottingham Royal Centre - 6th December 2016


James returned to Nottingham Royal Centre to fulfil the gig they had to cancel at the end of their May tour due to Tim Booth's illness to deliver a set full of songs from their number 2 album Girl At The End Of The World as well as highlights from their pre- and post-reformation. Support came from an impressive set from Manchester's The Slow Readers Club who now feel very much at home in these big venues.

Monday, 5 December 2016

Pixies / Fews - Manchester Apollo - 4th December 2016


Pixies' latest tour in support of their second post-comeback album Head Carrier hit Manchester Apollo on Sunday night. A thirty-four song set covered all bases in their career from Surfer Rosa through to their latest album and left us with one of the most spectacular encores we've witnessed. Support came from the excellent Fews.

The Slowdown Family / Baby Brave - Manchester Gorilla - 2nd December 2016

 

Back in September, Liam Frost reunited The Slowdown Family for the tenth anniversary of their debut album Show Me How The Spectres Dance. At the end of the shows he revealed that they were writing new music for a record that they hope to release in 2017. This first show since then revealed a couple of new songs, revisited some old favourites and a little Christmas spirit. Main support came from Baby Brave.