Saturday, 26 May 2018

The Slow Readers Club / October Drift - London Islington Assembly Hall - 25th May 2018


The Slow Readers Club played their biggest headline date outside of their native Manchester at Islington Assembly Hall in London on Friday night. A celebration of the recent top 20 success of their third album Build A Tower, they blew away a crowd of devotees and those who've only recently discovered the band with a ninety-minute non-stop stomp through songs from all of their three albums. Support came from an energetic performance from October Drift.

Friday, 25 May 2018

Sahara / The Roques - Perth The Green Room - 17th May 2018


Perth's premier venue plays host to two promising Dundee bands who have made the short journey through to play to a packed and enthusiastic crowd. Stuart Ralston enjoys a rare home town gig.

James - Oban Corran Halls - 23rd May 2018


Stuart Ralston ventures to the picturesque Scottish town of Oban on a beautiful summer's evening to catch old favourites James, and witnesses something spectacular.

Wednesday, 23 May 2018

James / Lanterns On The Lake - Middlesbrough Town Hall - 22nd May 2018


James continued their Better Than That tour with a sold-out at the recently refurbished Middlesbrough Town Hall. In front of a seated crowd that didn’t remain that way for long, they debuted another new song, resurrected an old favourite and introduced some new selections from their back catalogue. Support came from Lanterns On The Lake, playing the closest they get to a hometown show on this tour.

Monday, 21 May 2018

James / Lanterns On The Lake - Halifax Victoria Theatre - 20th May 2018


James continued their Better Than That tour with a twenty-three song set covering all bases of their career from debut album Stutter right through to six songs from their as-yet-unreleased fifteenth studio album Living In Extraordinary Times. Over two and a half hours of moments of musical magic and death-defying moments captured on film, James proved exactly why they have no equals on the live stage. Support came from Newcastle’s Lanterns On The Lake.

Sunday, 20 May 2018

James / Lanterns On The Lake - Blackburn King George's Hall - 19th May 2018


James continued their Better Than That tour with a sold-out Saturday night show at Blackburn's King George's Hall, a venue they hadn't visited for twenty-seven years. Dan Starr was at the show for us and reports back on a night of new songs and old favourites. Support came from Lanterns On The Lake.

The Slow Readers Club - Northwich Library - 19th May 2018


As part of The Charlatans' North By Northwich Festival, The Slow Readers Club headlined the town's library. In slightly surreal surroundings with bookcases moved out of the way to create a stage and a powerful sound system to accommodate a set that covered all three of their albums to date in front of a partisan hardcore of the band's fan base that had travelled from far and wide for this unique experience.

Saturday, 19 May 2018

Average Sex - Manchester Jimmy's - 18th May 2018


As part of The Charlatans North By Northwich Festival, the Friday night show was broadcast live to a number of venues across the country, many of which had a live band as support. At Jimmy's in Manchester that band was Average Sex, one of the most exciting new bands around. They ignored the small numbers that had turned up early to deliver a set that was every bit as thrilling as if the room was full and bouncing.

Friday, 18 May 2018

James / Lanterns On The Lake - Warrington Parr Hall - 17th May 2018


James' Better Than That tour continued into its second night with a first return to Warrington's Parr Hall since the band filmed a live concert of their then-unreleased Seven album. In front of a packed crowd, they recreated the feel of that with songs from their forthcoming Living In Extraordinary Times album, as well as revisiting both some of their biggest hits and some rarities pulled out of the deep rabbit hole of their extensive back catalogue. Support came from Newcastle's Lanterns On The Lake.

Jess Kemp - Interview


Jess Kemp releases her latest single No Shouting / On The Ground today and celebrates with a co-headline show at Manchester's Deaf Institute tonight. We caught up with the proudly independent songwriter for a chat about the two new songs, her songwriting process and how she got into music in the first place.

Thursday, 17 May 2018

ILL - We Are ILL


ILL’s debut album has been a long time coming. The volatile boundary-challenging band have made their name in Manchester and beyond with their voracious mix of styles and approaches to their art and a series of often chaotic on the brink of breakdown live shows. We Are Ill somehow manages to distil this melting pot into an album that demands your full attention, often baffling, spliced with moments of off-the-wall genius that you’d blink and miss as the next curveball smacks in you right between the eyes.

James / Lanterns On The Lake - Llandudno Venue Cymru - 16th May 2018


James opened their Better Than That tour at Llandudno Venue Cymru with a set that mixed half of their newly-announced Living In Extraordinary Times with some old Best Of era favourites, highlights of their most recent two albums as well as the odd rarity. Support came from Newcastle’s wonderful Lanterns On The Lake, eventually making their bow with James after years of trying to make the support slot work.

Wednesday, 16 May 2018

The Magic Numbers - Outsiders


The Magic Numbers return with their fifth album Outsiders, their first since 2014's Alias. Whilst their commercial star might have dimmed since they burst onto the scene over a decade ago, they come out fighting with the best record of their career to date.

James Announce Living In Extraordinary Times Album


James have announced the release of their fifteenth studio album Living In Extraordinary Times on August 3rd. Featuring Hank and Better Than That from their Better Than That EP plus ten additional tracks as well as four further songs on a deluxe version, the album is available in a number of formats to pre-order from the James webstore.

TRACK OF THE DAY : James - Hank


Hank is the final track to be revealed from James' upcoming Better Than That EP, to be released on May 18 to coincide with a run of seven intimate shows to preview their fifteenth album due in July and two festival appearances. It's a scathing attack on Donald Trump and US society under his presidency and also represents a sonic departure for the band.

Tuesday, 15 May 2018

Déjà Vega - Northwich The Salty Dog - 14th May 2018


Déjà Vega opened up the North By Northwich Festival with an no-holds barred seven-song set in the Salty Dog on the town's pedestrianised High Street. An intimate setting for the Winsford band, they took the opportunity to win over new converts curious at the band hand-picked by The Charlatans as their semi-official support for their own show over the road at Memorial Court.

The Charlatans - Northwich Memorial Court - 14th May 2018


Returning home for a week-long festival to celebrate their hometown of Northwich, now called North By Northwich in honour of the Austin festival, The Charlatans played the first of four sold out nights at the town’s Memorial Court with a career spanning set from their debut album Some Friendly right through to two tracks from their forthcoming EP Totally Eclipsing, from which two tracks are debuted tonight.

Monday, 14 May 2018

TRACK BY TRACK : The Slow Readers Club - Build A Tower


The Slow Readers Club entered the UK album charts at number 18 with their third album Build A Tower this week. As part of the campaign, they released a series of videos to accompany the release where they walked through the history and meaning of some of the songs.

Sunday, 13 May 2018

Neon Waltz - Dundee Beat Generator - 10th May 2018


Scotland's hardest working band bring their brand of 60s influenced pop tinged psych to a packed Dundee crowd and Stuart Ralston joins them.

The Slow Readers Club / SKIES - Nottingham Rock City - 12th May 2018


The seemingly unstoppable The Slow Readers Club bandwagon rolled into Nottingham and the iconic Rock City venue for the biggest show of their Build A Tower tour and the band took on the cavernous hall and made it feel intimate. Support came from SKIES.

Saturday, 12 May 2018

The Slow Readers Club / SKIES - Hull Welly - 11th May 2018


With the announcement that Build A Tower had entered the album charts at number eighteen, a phenomenal success for not just The Slow Readers Club, but their growing army of loyal followers and every band that is playing the local circuit of their hometown starved of the attention of radio and media that has belief in what they're doing. A party atmosphere ensued in a hot, sweaty and packed to the rafters Welly Club in Hull.  Support came from SKIES.

Friday, 11 May 2018

The Slow Readers Club / Wild Front - Newcastle Riverside - 10th May 2018


The Slow Readers Club bandwagon rolled into Newcastle on Thursday night on their Build A Tower tour. A triumphant show saw them win over an initially cautious audience by the sheer power of their performance and discover their festival-slaying, radio-conquering moment in the process. Support came from Southampton's Wild Front.

EXCLUSIVE : TRACK OF THE DAY : Jess Kemp - On The Ground


We're delighted to exclusively reveal On The Ground, the first of two new singles from Jess Kemp ahead of her co-headline show at the Deaf Institute in Manchester next Friday (May 18).

Wednesday, 9 May 2018

David Ford - Animal Spirits


David Ford returns with his fifth studio album Animal Spirits, a collection of songs written about the concepts of macroeconomics applied to day to day situations. We asked long term fan Andy Sweeney to have a listen to the album and compose his thoughts.

The Slow Readers Club - Manchester HMV - 8th May 2018


The Slow Readers Club continued their campaign in support of their Build A Tower album, announced earlier as being number twelve in the midweek charts, with a hastily-arranged full band acoustic performance in the HMV store in Manchester Arndale. In front of a crowd of all ages, they played five songs - a mix of three from Build A Tower and two from their previous album Cavalcade.

Tuesday, 8 May 2018

Blossoms - Leeds O2 Academy - 7th May 2018


Blossoms are back on the road celebrating the chart success of their second album Cool Like Out. A sold-out Bank Holiday Monday crowd braved the sauna-like conditions within the O2 Academy to witness a mix of tracks from the new album and their number one self-titled debut in an atmosphere that never dipped below fever pitch for the hour and a quarter they were on stage.

Monday, 7 May 2018

Liverpool Sound City (Berries / Average Sex / Hey Charlie / Peaness / Dirty Laces / White Room / Dish Pit / Violet Youth / The Seamonsters) - Various Venues - 6th May 2018


Day two of Liverpool Sound City saw us avoid the big venues and headline acts and concentrate on some of the smaller stages and bands that have been on our must-see list for a while or those we'd missed when they were last in Manchester. Across another scorching hot day in Liverpool, we caught The Seamonsters, Violet Youth, Dishpit, White Room, Dirty Laces, Peaness, Hey Charlie, Average Sex and Berries.

Sunday, 6 May 2018

Liverpool Sound City (The Slow Readers Club / Rews / Déjà Vega / Luvia / Calva Louise / Catholic Action) - Various Venues - 5th May 2018


A scorching hot summer's day isn't the ideal time to spend in indoor venues watching bands, yet that was the choice of thousands who flocked to Liverpool's Baltic Quarter for the first day of this year's Sound City Festival. Back in its spiritual home, the festival put on over a dozen stages championing the best in new music. We caught Catholic Action, Calva Louise, Luvia, Déjà Vega, Rews and The Slow Readers Club.

Saturday, 5 May 2018

The Slow Readers Club / Bang Bang Romeo - Manchester Cathedral - 4th May 2018


On the day of release of their third album Build A Tower The Slow Readers Club played the iconic Manchester Cathedral, a show that sold out under an hour on presale alone. With a nineteen song set featuring all but one of the ten tracks off the album and a selection of old favourites, Manchester celebrated their newest favourite sons in style. Support came from Doncaster’s favourites Bang Bang Romeo.

Friday, 4 May 2018

LIINES - Stop - Start (Track By Track Commentary)


Stop - Start is LIINES' long-awaited debut album released today. To celebrate we asked guitarist and vocalist Zoe to walk us through the album track-by-track.

The Slow Readers Club - Manchester 20 Stories (XS Session) - 3rd May 2018


As Manchester's intent to build a skyscraper a hundred stories high hasn't yet come to fruition, 20 Stories, one of the newest and most talked about new bars and restaurants, seemed like a fitting place for local radio champions XS Manchester to invite The Slow Readers Club to play an intimate acoustic set with views overlooking the city to celebrate the impending release of their album Build A Tower.

Thursday, 3 May 2018

Fuzzy Sun - Interview


Newly-signed to Blossoms' Very Clever Records and with their debut EP Want Love fresh out in the world, there's a huge buzz about Fuzzy Sun at the moment. Although they can count the number of gigs they've played on one hand so far, they're about to go out on tour with their label bosses and pop up a whole load of festivals this summer.  We caught up with them for a chat about who they are, how they formed and what to expect next from them.

Wednesday, 2 May 2018

Belly - Dove


Dove is the reformed Belly's first album since 1995's King. Self-released via a Pledge campaign that was set up following a successful reunion tour in mid 2016, the album draws from their two 1990s albums Star and King enough to make it very obviously a Belly album, but they've also given it a modern shine and with no pressure for commercial success and the band clearly having more fun than they ever did in the past as a result, it's the perfect comeback, greater than the sum of its parts and the expectations placed on it.

The Slow Readers Club - Build A Tower (alternate review)


The Slow Readers Club are a band on the rise. From the doom and gloom of their debut, arriving at a crossroads of disillusion and hope on their second album, to their third, and finest, most positive album yet.

TRACK OF THE DAY : James - Broken By The Hurt


Broken By The Hurt is the third track to be revealed from James' forthcoming Better Than That EP. According to tweets from Tim, this song is going to be exclusive to the EP and will not be included on their fifteenth studio album, currently unannounced but slated for a July release.

Tuesday, 1 May 2018

LIINES - Stop - Start


Stop - Start is a moment we've been waiting for since we first saw LIINES play to about ten people at a fanzine launch back in December 2014. Within seconds we knew they were a very special band, one that we had to champion. Fast forward three and a half years and we're proudly placing the needle down on a gorgeous slab of white vinyl and listening to ten songs that, like the album's title suggests, represent a battle to get this record out into the world. There might be scars, but the minute the bass and drums kick in and Zoe's trademark almost out of breath vocals start to give absolutely everything to the song, it all makes perfect sense.

James - Better Than That EP


James return with a new four-track EP, released on 10" and download with a CD version exclusive to their official store. Featuring two songs - Better Than That and Hank - from their forthcoming fifteenth studio album - and two others - Busted and Broken By The Hurt - that didn't make the cut for that record, the EP shows the band continuing to evolve, refusing to rest on their laurels or recreate what they've done before.

The Slow Readers Club - Live At Festival No.6


To accompany their third album Build A Tower, The Slow Readers Club are also releasing their performance with the Festival No.6 classical ensemble at last year's festival consisting of six songs chosen from their first two albums and arranged by Joe Duddell. With some rarely played tracks making an appearance and some old favourites given a radical makeover, it's a stunning companion piece to the album itself.