Friday, 31 October 2014

Dave Fidler / Mano McLaughlin - Manchester Whiskey Jar - 30th October 2014

We've raved about Dave Fidler's brilliant solo debut I'm Not Here for quite some time tonight and last night saw the launch gig for it at Manchester's Whiskey Jar.  As people were being turned away at the door, Dave put on a show that added new textures to the album as well as a few covers and some as gems from his days in Bluebird Kid Clark.

High Hazels - Interview

High Hazels released their debut self-titled album yesterday, one of our favourites of the year so far.  We had the opportunity of a brief chat with them to find out a little more about them.

Thursday, 30 October 2014

Whisky Sessions Unsigned - Manchester Whiskey Jar - 29th October 2014 (Beck Lanehart, Larkins, Troubadour, The Tapestry, The Jordan Allen Band, Death To The Strange, The Gramotones)

The Whisky Sessions are a new festival being held at Victoria Warehouse in Manchester on November 21-22.  Tonight’s Unsigned competition is effectively a battle of the bands competition to win a place opening the second day of the festival ahead of Gomez, Turin Brakes and Badly Drawn Boy.

Liam Frost - Interview

Liam Frost has released his first solo material for five years this week in the form of the Wild Places EP.  We caught up with him to run us through the songs and talk about his future plans.

Wednesday, 29 October 2014

Dave Fidler - I'm Not Here - Track By Track

Dave Fidler releases his superb debut album I'm Not Here with a launch gig at Manchester's Whiskey Jar tomorrow night.  He took time out to walk us through each song on the album.

Tuesday, 28 October 2014

Money - Salford Eagle Inn - 27th October 2014

Ahead of going into the studio to record their second album, Money are playing a series of low-key shows to preview material that will form that record as well as favourites from their debut Shadow Of Heaven.  We crammed into the intimate Eagle Inn in Salford along with 80 other lucky punters.

Monday, 27 October 2014

The Lottery Winners / Liam McClair / The Dom Major Band - Altrincham Cinnamon Club - 26th October 2014

A Sunday night in the leafy Altrincham suburb of Bowdon isn't the most rock and roll place in the world and neither are The Lottery Winners the most rock and roll band in the world, but sometimes the power of great songs and the charm of the front man can be worth more than regurgigated cliché as we found out at an entertaining Oxjam evening.

Lily And Madeleine - Fumes

Even The Stars first fell head over heels for Lily and Madeleine back in June 2013 when they released their debut EP, The Weight Of The Globe, which was recorded when the sisters were still at High School in Indianapolis. Their eponymous album followed soon after and that further beguiled us with enchanting harmonies and tales of lost love.  They are back with Fumes, a beautifully crafted ten song collection which sees the sisters, seamless, velvety smooth vocal harmonies continue to impress.

High Hazels - High Hazels

There's been a lot of talk recently about a much-needed renaissance of rock music in the public conscience.  High Hazels are ploughing a completely different furrow, but one that's been equally ignored in recent years.  Their self-titled debut is possibly the finest pure guitar pop album of the year.

Liam Frost - The Wild Places EP

It seems an age, five years to be exact, since Liam Frost released his last solo work, the wonderful We Ain't Go No Money, Honey, But We Got Rain.  He's back with a four-track EP entitled The Wild Places and it shows that time hasn't diminished his ability to produce seductive, intelligent songs as well as producing an interesting take on a 1980s classic.

Sunday, 26 October 2014

Reverend And The Makers - Sheffield O2 Academy - 24th / 25th October 2014

It's ten years since Reverend And The Makers burst onto the scene with a batch of high-octane singles and their State Of Things debut album.  Follow-up A French Kiss In The Chaos failed to hit the same chart heights and their number seemed up, but two further albums @Reverend_Makers and Thirty Two reversed that fall. And so, ten years on, they play all four albums in full over two nights at Sheffield's O2 Academy.

Saturday, 25 October 2014

Paul Heaton And Jacqui Abbott - Salford Kings Arms - 23rd October 2014

Paul Heaton and Jacqui Abbott took the unusual step of opening up their rehearsals for their upcoming Irish tour to the public in the beautiful little venue hidden away on the top floor of Paul's Salford pub The Kings Arms.  Our friend Glenn Wallworth went along and the afternoon more than lived up to his expectations.

Thursday, 23 October 2014

Dave Fidler - Interview

Dave Fidler releases his debut solo album I'm Not Here next week and plays a launch night at Manchester's Whisky Jar on Thursday night (30th).  We spoke to him about his career to date, the album and touring with I Am Kloot's John Bramwell.

Tuesday, 21 October 2014

Introducing - The Vendettas

The Vendettas are a three-piece sixties inspired band that term their music as Britmod.  They are releasing a double A-side single Stuck In Your World / What You Say Girl this Saturday with a launch gig at The Wardrobe in Leeds. We found out a little more about them.

Monday, 20 October 2014

Inspiral Carpets - Inspiral Carpets

It's two and a half years since Inspiral Carpets announced the return of original singer Stephen Holt, who left prior to what's been termed the "Glory Years" of the band between 1989 and 1994 where they were chart regulars and released four albums with former vocalist Tom Hingley.  Since that changeover they've released a couple of limited edition singles, but they're back with a self-titled album that surpasses anything they've released in their career so far.

Sunday, 19 October 2014

Northside / The Northstand - Sale Waterside Arts Centre - 18th October 2014

One of Manchester's established and one of the finest upcoming bands joined forces took a trip on the tram down to the excellent Waterside Arts Centre in Sale to look back at one of the most under-rated albums of the Madchester era and give a glimpse of some of the best of what's coming out of the city today.

Saturday, 18 October 2014

Introducing - William Stead

William Stead has recently released his second EP Indigo Bird. The follow-up to 2012's Saint Christopher Protect Us is available as a free download from his Bandcamp page.

Friday, 17 October 2014

Nicole Atkins / The Colours - Manchester Gullivers - 16th October 2014

Nicole Atkins made her first trip to Manchester as a headline artist to support the release of her third album Slow Phaser.  She wowed the crowd with a set spanning those three albums and a personality and voice that enveloped the room.

Thursday, 16 October 2014

Nina Baker - Single Bed wins Best Of British Unsigned Song Of The Year Award

We championed Nina Baker back in June this year and we're delighted to hear that she's won Unsigned Song Of The Year at the Best Of British Awards for her recent song Single Bed as well as runner-up in Female Of The Year.

Wednesday, 15 October 2014

Blossoms - Liverpool Shipping Forecast - 14th October 2014

Tonight is the opening night of Blossoms' first UK tour so we made the short trek to Liverpool to watch them wow a packed Shipping Forecast.

Tuesday, 14 October 2014

James - Manchester Hard Rock Cafe - 13th October 2014 (review 2)

James round off a busy week of promotional activities with a small hometown gig. As you can imagine, Even The Stars were out to witness a little bit of magic on a wet Monday night.

James - Manchester Hard Rock Cafe - 13th October 2014

The final stop on James' whistle-stop promotional tour of the UK was a hometown show at Manchester's Hard Rock Cafe for Absolute Radio.  Used to playing to 16,000 people just across the street at the Arena, this 300 capacity venue took them back to their early days of playing to small, enthusiastic and devoted crowds.

Friday, 10 October 2014

Andrew Montgomery - Interview

Former Geneva frontman Andrew Montgomery has released his splendid debut solo album Ruled By Dreams this week.  We caught up with him to find out what he's been up to in the intervening years and why now is the right time for him to release the album.

Thursday, 9 October 2014

Sara Lowes - Manchester Kraak - 8th October 2014

We've been fans of Sara Lowes for quite a few years now.  After what seems like an age, she's readied the follow-up to her debut album Back To Creation and we saw her perform an increasingly rare live set showcasing some of those songs at Manchester's Kraak Gallery.

Wednesday, 8 October 2014

James / Ainslie Henderson - Stirling Tolbooth - 7th October 2014

Taking a break from recording sessions, a stripped-down five-piece James played an intimate one-hour show to 150 lucky people at the Tolbooth in Stirling.  We were there to catch them mix songs from their current album La Petite Mort with some less familiar tracks from their back catalogue.

Tuesday, 7 October 2014

Introducing - Disco Casino

Disco Casino are an exciting new four-piece from Manchester, Glossop and California who've just made their debut EP Printing Guns available on Soundcloud.  We spoke with bass player David Gould about how they got together and their influences.

Monday, 6 October 2014

Johnny Marr - Playland

Johnny Marr releases his second solo album Playland today.  Stuart Ralston is suitably impressed by the former Smiths' guitarist's latest offering.

Sunday, 5 October 2014

Andrew Montgomery - Ruled By Dreams

The debut album by ex-Geneva, Amityville and St Famous front man Andrew Montgomery has been a very long time coming.  We asked our good friend, and Geneva devotee back in the day, Stewart Howie to review Ruled By Dreams for us.

Saturday, 4 October 2014

The Gramotones - Manchester Band On The Wall - 3rd October 2014

It's rare for a band to sneak under the Manchester hipster radar and get to the point where there's sold-out signs on a venue the size of Band On The Wall, but tonight The Gramotones demonstrate that this is merely a stepping stone to much bigger things.

Friday, 3 October 2014

Introducing - Kobadelta

Kobadelta are a five-piece from Newcastle who play what they describe as "dark and brooding indie-psych-rock". They've just released their new EP Remain Distracted.