It's twenty years since The Cure last played Manchester Arena and as they returned to the UK at the end of a year-long world tour expectations were high amongst the 16,000 sold out crowd. The career- spanning set was cut short by Robert Smith's vocal issues but they still delighted with a two hour mix from most of their albums leaving their biggest songs to the end. Support came from Glaswegian heroes The Twilight Sad.
Wednesday, 30 November 2016
Monday, 28 November 2016
Back in February, Lanterns On The Lake collaborated with the Royal Northern Sinfonia for a one-off show at The Sage in Gateshead. Bella Union have just released a digital version of ten of the songs from one of our favourite shows of the year and it's every little bit as special as we remembered.
Aatma played host to LIINES' hometown launch show for their first physical release, the double A-side single Be Here / Disappear, on Saturday night. A packed crowd was delighted by a forty minute set that left both band and audience gasping for breath.
When I Think Of You is the third track to be revealed by Glasgow's Lucia Fontaine from her forthcoming Best Boy EP which will also include her previous tracks Best Boy and Lose My Mind,
Saturday, 26 November 2016
Divided Kingdom is the fifth in the series of Pocket Albums that Trampolene have released over the past couple of years. As with previous releases there's a huge variety on show from full-on everything turned up rock songs to delicate heartwrenching acoustic tracks and poetry from one of Britain's most underrated bands.
Friday, 25 November 2016
Four bands playing for free on a Thursday night? When it's the calibre of established acts such as October Drift and Larkins playing a venue much smaller than their previous Manchester headline shows, then it's too good to turn down especially when highly tipped local acts Plastic House and Sly Antics are also on the bill.
Thursday, 24 November 2016
With the critical success of recent album Front Row Seat To Earth still ringing in her ears, Natalie Mering brought Weyes Blood to a packed out sweltering Castle music room in Manchester for a ten song set that focused heavily on that record but also gave a glimpse of her previous work.
Tuesday, 22 November 2016
Craig Douglas Gill was drummer in Inspiral Carpets, but he was much more than that. He was a father and husband first, a friend second and a musician and music lover third. His death on Sunday at the age of 44 leaves a massive hole in the lives of all three of those worlds. In the absence of being able to do anything else meaningful, we'd like to pay tribute to an incredible drummer, a dry witted, intelligent and humorous man that we feel privileged to have been able to call a friend.
Joined At The Lip is the first product of High Hazels' recording sessions for their second album which will be preceded by a new EP next year, their first material in eighteen months since their Valencia single was taken from their self-titled debut. It's unmistakably them from the very first second, but it feels like a massive progression in both sound and ambition.
Spaceheads have augmented themselves to a trio for their new album Laughing Water, inviting Vincent Bertholet on double bass to join their trumpet and drums duo to record an album that's been eleven years in the making. It bears all the hallmarks of Spaceheads previous albums but the addition of Bertholet brings different nuances to the record which at points feels like they're making a commercial grab whilst at others sees them retreat further into delicate jazz-tinged improvisations that were captured at the moment of creation never to be repeated in that way.
Monday, 21 November 2016
Leave Alone The Empty Spaces is the title track from John Bramwell's forthcoming debut solo album. He's released a video of the song being performed recently at Manchester's Royal Northern College Of Music.
Sunday, 20 November 2016
One of Manchester's fastest rising bands Lunar headlined the latest This Feeling club night at the Night And Day Cafe on Saturday night to a packed crowd of their ever-expanding fan base and those curious to see what all the fuss is about. A seven-song set crammed full of singles present and future kept the hot and sweaty room dancing and wanting more.
Saturday, 19 November 2016
Friday, 18 November 2016
Across the road from Gorilla, Reverend And The Makers have a habit of making the legendary bouncy dancefloor resemble a trampoline from start to finish of their customary tour stop off. Tonight is a different beast altogether though as they embark on an acoustic tour that strips back some of their best known songs as well as some of their favourites to their bare bones. It doesn't stop Gorilla heaving, sweating and at times drowning them out in a room full of love and adoration.
Thursday, 17 November 2016
One of the country's most under-rated bands Dutch Uncles have announced details of their fifth album Big Balloon to be released via Memphis Industries on February 17th. They've also revealed the rather striking title track which heralds a return to the more guitar based sounds of their earlier records.
Wednesday, 16 November 2016
Ryley Walker is a unique character in the music industry, a man with an immense talent that refuses to play by any rules other than his own, which tend to be to do whatever the hell he likes. He returned to Manchester on Monday night for his fourth show in the last eighteen months, each one different in set up, in band mates and in style. Plugged in this time round with a band of four brothers in tow, he proceeded to play an hour and forty five minute set with just eight songs to an absolutely captivated audience. He was supported by Kayla Cohen who performs under the name Itasca. Prior to the show he rocked up at Piccadilly Records with just an acoustic guitar and proceeded to play four songs with no amplification.
Monday, 14 November 2016
Luckless / Thomas And The Empty Orchestra / Katie O'Malley - Manchester Gullivers - 12th November 2016
Luckless, aka Ivy Rossiter, hit Manchester for the first time since her 2015 performance at A Carefully Planned Festival on Saturday night, playing an intimate show in the lounge room at Gullivers. We caught up her playing songs from her last album Vindication Blues as well as songs from her next record, hopefully due out in 2017. Support came from Sheffield's Thomas And The Empty Orchestra and Katie O'Malley.
Kristin Hersh is in the middle of a rare UK tour to support the release of her new book and double CD entitled Wyatt At The Coyote Palace. We caught her in conversation with John Robb and performing a short acoustic set at the Louder Than Words Festival at Manchester's Palace Hotel on Saturday afternoon before Sunday's sold out show round the corner at Gorilla.
Stargazing is the latest single from She Makes War's album Direction Of Travel released to coincide with her upcoming UK tour. The video is set around Clifton Suspension Bridge and Troopers Hill in Bristol and sees her space-obsessed character seek ways of leaving the planet.
Saturday, 12 November 2016
Ahead of the Spring 2017 release of his debut solo album Leave Alone The Empty Spaces, John Bramwell has embarked on two preview shows, the first at Manchester's Royal Northern College of Music. Accompanied by a pianist, cellist, guitarists and a pedal steel player, he revealed eight songs from the album as well as working his way through the beloved I Am Kloot back catalogue to a rapturous reception from a sold out crowd. Support came from Dave Fidler.
Friday, 11 November 2016
Fresh from the studio where he's been writing and recording songs for his second album and follow up to 2014's I'm Not Here, Dave Fidler played a well-received set at Manchester's Night And Day.
Thursday, 10 November 2016
With the release of their third album Sunlit Youth, Local Natives made their return to Manchester for the first time in three years. With a set that mixed songs from the album with those from its predecessor Hummingbird and their celebrated debut Gorilla Manor, they performed an exhilirating infectious hour and a half set that touched all bases and left the crowd dancing and singing along to both old and new.
Julia Jacklin has been one of the discoveries of 2016. Her debut album Don't Let The Kids Win is a soul bearing stirring record that lays emotions and feelings bare. We caught Julia's first ever Manchester show supporting Whitney at Gorilla to see how the songs translated to the live environment.
Tuesday, 8 November 2016
Clint Boon's inaugural Set2Go podcast saw eleven great acts grace the stage over two floors at Sound Control on Sunday night. The two final acts Saytr Play and The Blinders rounded off the evening upstairs in the loft, two very different bands that thrilled a crowd at the end of a long day of great music.
Luckless, aka Ivy Rossiter, is a New Zealand artist currently residing in Berlin. To date she's released two albums, a self-titled debut and 2014's Vindication Blues. Touring constantly, she's returning to the UK this week for a series of shows including a return to Manchester, where she plays Gullivers on Saturday, just over a year after she stunned a packed basement at Cord as part of A Carefully Planned Festival. We caught up with Ivy about her recollections of that and her plans for new material.
Monday, 7 November 2016
The Slow Readers Club have been making their mark across the Irish Sea in Dublin. Following on from a sold out show at The Workmens Club earlier in the year on word of mouth and support from local station TXFM, they returned to pack out the much bigger legendary Whelan's on Saturday night. We got the guinness in and watched a stunning performance including the first play of a new song Lunatic from the writing sessions for their third album.
Friday, 4 November 2016
She Makes War is opening up for The Wave Pictures on their current UK tour. A long time favourite of Even The Stars, whether playing solo or with her band, she charmed a static Manchester audience with songs from her recent album Direction Of Travel, a couple of old favourites and two great new songs from her fourth album due next year.
Just a month after their Uber Capitalist Death Trade EP was released, Cabbage are back with four more songs that take a journey into the mysterious world of their minds where they touch on subjects like Savile's relationship with the royal family and the Blairs and comparing the North / South divide to the one in Korea. It's every bit as wild, weird and wonderful as its predecessor.