Wednesday, 13 December 2017
Findlay brought what felt like her first UK tour in an eternity to a close on Sunday night at Glasgow's King Tut's Wah Wah Hut supported by Brighton's MarthaGunn and local Baby Taylah. Playing the majority of songs from her debut album Forgotten Pleasures, Findlay and her band delivered a set that warmed up the audience and left us scratching our heads as to why she's still playing venues of this size.
Monday, 11 December 2017
One of the most promising new bands in the country, The Gallerys, made a prompt return to Manchester following a couple of shows in October with a support slot for The King Blues at Club Academy. Playing to a crowd unfamiliar to the three-piece's cheeky brand of indie guitar music that sees all three of them taking on lead vocals during the set, they won over the audience with an ease that suggests that big things may be on the horizon for them in 2018.
With the soft release of his new album Leave Alone The Empty Spaces John Bramwell has been touring the UK and the Netherlands for the past few weeks presenting the songs from it and its follow-up as well as tried and tested I Am Kloot favourites. We caught the train up to the splendid Sage 2 in Gateshead to witness the rejuvenation of one of the country's favourite songwriters.
Average Sex's debut EP Ice Cream is a collection of four songs produced with a refreshing approach to their art. Like their live shows, it's remarkably playful in its approach, particularly lyrically. It doesn't strive for musical perfection, because quite frankly that would be boring. It's the musical equipment of letting someone dig you in the ribs and then tickle your sides, but you don't care because instead of irritating you, you secretly love it and don't want it to stop.
Sunday, 10 December 2017
The Slow Readers Club's triumphant sell out UK tour came to an end in Glasgow last night in the hot, sweaty and celebratory confines of King Tut's Wah Wah Hut, a gig that sold out four months ago with weeks of being announced. It felt like an end of tour celebration and a party at the end of a year where they've capitalised on the success they enjoyed following the James tour in 2016 by filling rooms they'd have only dreamt about two years ago.
Friday, 8 December 2017
Tender is the first song taken from Little Sparrow's new EP Just 3, a collaboration with classical pianist Robin Dewhurst and her first new material since her acclaimed album Wishing Tree. The accompanying video is made up of photographic memories of some of her fans that she sourced through a Facebook request.
Wednesday, 6 December 2017
Having only released their debut LP You Tried earlier this year, Hater’s EP Red Blinders, four new songs, might well have them marked down as prolific. As on the LP, Hater have delivered a set of dreamy upbeat songs that subtly disarm and charm the listener into submission rather than bowl them over with power or volume.
Moulettes returned to Manchester as part of their extensive UK tour supporting their last album Preternatural. The four-piece transformed the concept album into a chameleon-like live set that fused rock and folk and points in between without ever going off piste as the dual vocals and on-stage interaction of Hannah and Raevennan made for a visually as well as aurally exciting hour and a half.
Tuesday, 5 December 2017
Matter Of Mind’s new EP Dead Apologies sees them broadening their horizons on a number of fronts. Featuring a rerecorded version of their single Far Too Wrong and their most recent Stay, it’s their most confident and assured release yet with a sound that’s tailor made for venues much bigger than they’re currently inhabiting.
Monday, 4 December 2017
Sunday, 3 December 2017
Pip Blom returned to Manchester for a final show of the year to build on her and her band's burgeoning reputation as an exciting live band at The Peer Hat on Wednesday night. Support came from another rising star, this time from much closer to home, in Phoebe Green.
The Twang are one of the most maligned bands of the last decade, unfairly dismissed as a lads' band by a sneering music press as the initial hype surrounding their debut album Love It When I Feel Like This subsided. They've continued now for ten years with diminishing returns commercially, but retaining a genuine humility and honesty in their work that often got overlooked. The Ritz was sold out months in advance for this nostalgic look back at that debut and selected highlights of the rest of their career and the audience spent the hour and a half bouncing around to songs that meant, and still mean, something to them. Support came from The Assist and Ivory Wave.
Just over a week after their triumphant Albert Hall sell out show a few hundred metres away, The Slow Readers Club played a seven-song acoustic set that is likely to be more intimate than anything they ever play again. Aaron, Kurtis and Jim treated a crowd packed into Fred Perry's bijou Manchester store to a stripped down performance of favourites from across their two albums as well as recent single Lunatic.
Saturday, 2 December 2017
One of the running topics of conversation amongst our friends group in Manchester is U2. Some hate, some love, without such differences of opinion music would be the sort of bland nonsense that Cowell and his ilk want to push upon us. In the spirit of democracy and free speech, we asked U2 superfan Jason Wynne to give us his views on their new album Songs Of Experience.
Wednesday, 29 November 2017
7 Hours is the debut single from Warrington four-piece Kula Bay. The band only formed in June so 7 Hours is a very impressive opening gambit from a band that's already attracted the attention of BBC Introducing Manchester who have played them two weeks running with deserved rave reviews of the song.
Tuesday, 28 November 2017
Monday, 27 November 2017
Sunday night down in the bowels after the longest weekend known to man isn’t the sort of place you’d expect to have your flagging spirits lifted, your feet compelled to once last (dad) dance and performances as intense as they are fun. But that’s exactly what Nelson Can and LIINES achieved.
Saturday, 25 November 2017
Two thousand plus people have come to pay homage to The Slow Readers Club, a band that's come from the streets of this town to the grand surroundings of this resurrected Wesleyan chapel through their own hard work and perseverance, the never-say-die spirit that makes Manchester so special and a belief in a set of songs, old and new, that somehow sum up feelings that sit deep down within us all and wrest them out and into the world for all to see.
Sunday, 19 November 2017
Having heard Kula Bay's new single 7 Hours on BBC Introducing an hour before, the notification they were playing Academy 3 the same night on Facebook was too much of a coincidence to turn down, to see whether the good impression that song gave on first listen would be replicated by their live show.
The unstoppable momentum of The Slow Readers Club's UK tour rolled into Bristol on Friday night for another sold out show at The Thekla. In a hot and sweaty basement of a boat they thrilled a packed out crowd with tracks from their first two albums and four new songs from their forthcoming third. Support came from the thrilling evocative and dark Desperate Journalist.
Friday, 17 November 2017
When Jordan Allen released his Livin' La Vida Bolton EP earlier this year, it was clear from the reaction both to the release and at live shows, that R.O.S.I.E. was the fan favourite. Rebooted and with a video that perfectly matches the message of the song, it's now being given the single treatment it richly deserves ahead of Jordan's huge UK headline tour.
Launching debut album Chemical Friends to a packed Manchester crowd, Puppet Rebellion celebrate their past, their present and look forward to the future.
Thursday, 16 November 2017
Wednesday, 15 November 2017
Waterworks is the debut EP from singer-songwriter Finola launched this week with a show at Jimmy's in Manchester. Over the four tracks she demonstrates an ability to express feelings and intentions with a clarity of purpose and with a voice that emphasises both the emotions and the intent of the words she's singing.
Opening their marathon two month 30th anniversary tour with a career spanning set, Happy Mondays roll back the years in style at the historic Caird Hall.
Sunday, 12 November 2017
In support of her new album Goodnight Rhonda Lee and ahead of her only UK show at London's Sebright Arms on Monday, Nicole Atkins performed an intimate eight song set of songs from the album at Rough Trade's Brick Lane store on Friday lunchtime. In the absence of a Manchester show, we caught her deliver a set that confirms her as one of the most stunning vocalists operating today.
Thursday, 9 November 2017
Leave Alone The Empty Spaces is the debut solo album from I Am Kloot's John Bramwell. Stripping back all the production gloss of the last two I Am Kloot studio albums, it's a real back to basics record, inspired by both John's incessant solo touring of the last four years and the home-based recording studio where most of this was written and recorded. What remains is an intimate, heartfelt album that lays bare why many of his peers cite him as an inspiration and one of the leading songwriters of his generation.
Juno is the new single from Kent four-piece Salvation Jayne, following on from their well-received Moves That Make The Record Skip EP that was released earlier this year. Accompanied by a predominantly live performance video, the song is a big, bold rock song with a hint of glam to it.
Wednesday, 8 November 2017
False Advertising have just released an EP entitled I Would Be So Much Happier If I Just Stopped Caring, a compilation of the singles they've released through 2017. We caught up with Jen, Chris and Josh for a chat about the EP, becoming an advert for Mobike and their plans for 2018 and new songs.
Tuesday, 7 November 2017
Max And Archie is the third single from Sheffield six-piece The Seamonsters. It captures an infectious energy that has run through their previous two singles, but hides more than a hint of menace and attitude behind its sweet catchy hook-laden tune.
Monday, 6 November 2017
On a wet and windy Friday night in November Ste Ackley took a drive over the moors to Todmorden to witness London’s Black Doldrums roll into town on the penultimate date of their UK tour with support from Purple Merlin and Liberal Violence.
Edits return with their new single Don't Speak, a song that encapsulates their "electronic other world-ness" description of their music perfectly. The follow-up to two well-received EPs is their first new music in over a year and signifies a subtle but noticeable change in direction for the Manchester-based two piece.
Sunday, 5 November 2017
SKIES return with their new EP We Fear Change, four tracks that they've revealed across the course of a very successful 2017 for them that saw them do their own UK tour and then support The Slow Readers Club on their breakthrough tour. We Fear Change is the sound of a fresh, exciting band, ready to win over the hearts and minds of the nation.
The UK leg of The Slow Readers Club's first tour since signing to Modern Sky kicked off at Birmingham's O2 Academy 2 on Saturday night with a set full of fan favourites from their first two albums and four tracks that should appear on their third album early next year. Support came from the impressive Victories At Sea.