Monday 29 June 2015

Purple Heart Parade / Velvet Morning / This Other Kingdom / The Jungfraus - Manchester Gullivers - 27th June 2015

Astral Elevator is a fabulous monthly night at Gullivers in Manchester. The line-up is hand-picked by the promoter from bands from in and out of town that she loves that loosely are attached to the "psyche" monicker. Tonight's line-up sees local returning heroes Purple Heart Parade play their first hometown show in ages, supported by fellow Mancunians The Jungfraus, Dublin's This Other Kingdom and London's Velvet Morning.

Saturday 27 June 2015

Inspiral Carpets / Dub Sex - Holmfirth Picturedrome - 26th June 2015

Ahead of their headlining slot at York's Apollo Festival, Inspiral Carpets returned to one of their (and our) favourite venues - the beautiful Holmfirth Picturedrome set up in Last Of The Summer Wine country in the Pennines. They play a set of old and new favourites to a boisterous crowd supported by fellow Mancunians Dub Sex.

Introducing - Control Of The Going

This week we're very excited about our tip on Shell Zenner's Amazing Radio show. A drunken chat outside the Night And Day, a scribbled name (if iPhone notes count as the modern day equivalent) and a listen to the songs the next morning and Control Of The Going had us hooked. As well as their debut EP, Epilepsy Bus Ride, there's lots on their soundcloud for you to get your teeth into ahead of their debut show at the very same place we met them on July 10th. We had a bit more sober chat with them to find out more.

Friday 26 June 2015

Track Of The Day : The Jackobins - Waiting On The Sun

Waiting On The Sun is the new single from The Jackobins. Following up on last year's debut Ghosts EP, the single cements their burgeoning reputation with its soaring huge chorus that springs from a glorious electro-beat driven verse. It crams all the hallmarks of a great crossover pop single into its three minutes whilst remaining true to their roots.

Tuesday 23 June 2015

Tracks Of The Day : GØSPEL - Ain't Gonna Let You In / The Other Side

We've been huge fans of Gospel since their debut track Disasters Running Wild dropped last year, closely followed by their first single EMPR. We've waited patiently for their next offering and we're not disappointed with their latest two-track single which pairs Ain't Gonna Let You In with the appropriately titled The Other Side.

Monday 22 June 2015

Headlander Festival - The Slow Readers Club, Dave Fidler, Ruby Tuesday, INEGO, Clockwork Radio, Finola Daley-Dee, The Hyena Kill, Isembard's Wheel - 20th June 2015



Headlander Festival is set in the grounds of Stockport Rugby Club. Billed as a family festival, the headline act on the Saturday night was 80s/90s favourite Roachford. But tucked away near the entrance was the Scruff Of The Neck stage, curated by the record label, where we found a mix of Even The Stars favourites as well as some acts we were catching for the first time.

Saturday 20 June 2015

Blossoms / The Pretty Pennys - St Helens Library - 19th June 2015

A Blossoms gig in a library? In a summer of increasingly important festival appearances and before they make the step up to venues like The Ritz on the back of the forthcoming Blown Rose single, there's no way we were going to miss a gig in such an interesting location. We made the trip up the M62 and were rewarded with the debut performance of a new song as well as a great support slot from local heroes The Pretty Pennys.

Thursday 18 June 2015

Track Of The Day : Black Casino And The Ghost - Age Of Contagion

Black Casino And The Ghost are back with a new single Age Of Contagion from their forthcoming second album Until The Waters Run Clear.

Control Of The Going - Epilepsy Bus Ride

Control Of The Going describe themselves an "psychedelic / shoegaze alternative sounding band" and they've just released their debut EP Epilepsy Bus Ride following a number of demos revealed on their Soundcloud.  What we found is an interesting proposition, a sound that instantly feels familiar, but not like anyone else around the Manchester scene at the moment.

Wednesday 17 June 2015

White Boy - Glitoris

Glitoris is the eagerly awaited debut album from White Boy. It's a record that's spectacular in both its range and its ambition, delivering on the building buzz, excitement and mystery about the band and then some. From exuberant glam-rock stomps through brass-drenched nods to ska to beautiful shimmering electronic and piano ballads, it flits from style to style, changing direction constantly without ever losing impact.

Tuesday 16 June 2015

Manchester Psych Fest Part 2 - The Black Tambourines, The Sundowners, The Watchmakers, The Lucid Dream - Manchester Night And Day - 13th June 2015

On Saturday we saw nine bands in our second home the Night And Day in Manchester as part of the third annual Psych Fest. We reviewed five bands yesterday and conclude today with four excellent, but very different sets from The Black Tambourines, The Sundowners, The Watchmakers and The Lucid Dream.

Monday 15 June 2015

Manchester Psych Fest Part 1 - Freakout Honey, Black Lung, White Noise Sound, Déja Vegà, Hey Bulldog - Manchester Night And Day Cafe - 13th June 2015

Manchester's Night And Day played host to the city's third Psych Fest, a day full of ten acts in one venue starting mid-afternoon into the early hours of the next day. From local bands through to nationally and internationally recognised bands, the line-up consisted of a wide scope of the bands that fall under the "psych" banner. In the first part we review the first five acts - Freakout Honey, Black Lung, White Noise Sound, Déja Vegà and Hey Bulldog.

Liam McClair / Sobi - Manchester Stevenson Square - 12th June 2015

A rooftop of Stevenson Square in the centre of Manchester isn't your traditional venue, but hidden away on the top of the building that holds Ply and Guilty By Association is an intimate performance space with views across the city. We were lucky enough to be invited to attend an acoustic performance by Liam McClair and Sobi.

Saturday 13 June 2015

Ash - Manchester Sound Control - 12th June 2015

Armed with a new album Kablammo released a couple of weeks ago, Ash came to Manchester to play a sold-out show at the sauna-like Sound Control that mixed tracks from it and classics from their mountain of celebratory punk-driven three minute hit singles.

Friday 12 June 2015

British Sea Power - Manchester Ritz - 11th June 2015

Ever the awkward, British Sea Power have picked the twelfth anniversary of the release of their debut The Decline Of British Sea Power as the time to reissue it in a range of deluxe packages and to undertake a short tour to play the album in full. We caught their Manchester show and were given a stunning reminder of how inspiring and unique they are.

Thursday 11 June 2015

Lily-Jo - Manchester Noho - 9th June 2015

One of the things about writing is a blog is that you get categorised as only liking one type of music. We'd been invited to the launch of Lily-Jo's new EP Need To Know, but we felt it was with a sense of trepidation of what we'd think. What the night showed that is that a great voice and songs can transcend artificially created genres and by the end of the evening we're nodding and tapping our feet along with everyone else to the soulful rhythms filling the room.

Danny And The Champions Of The World - What Kind Of Love

What Kind Of Love is the fifth studio album from Danny And The Champions Of The World. Led by frontman Danny Wilson, the album is an exploration of love in many different forms set to Danny's unmistakable soulful country-tinged voice and is drenched in beautiful brass and pedal guitar throughout.

Wednesday 10 June 2015

Patti Smith - Manchester Apollo - 8th June 2015

The word legend is one that has wormed its way into common parlance to such an extent that its usage is practically meaningless. However, a packed Manchester Apollo had gathered for Patti Smith to witness someone truly worthy of the monicker play their timeless classic debut album Horses album in full.

Monday 8 June 2015

PINS - Wild Nights

Even The Stars favourites PINS return with Wild Nights, the follow-up to 2013's Girls Like Us. It's a more reflective affair sonically than their debut, merging its post-punk spikiness with classic girl-group harmonies to create a cohesive record that's more ambitious than its predecessor.

Bathymetry - Bathymetry

At the weekend we tipped Bathymetry on Shell Zenner's Amazing Radio show ahead of the release of their self-titled debut album which is out today. It's an exciting record that lives by its own conventions and rules devised in the minds of Ariel, Emily and Dave and it sounds like no other record you'll hear this year.

Sauna Youth - Distractions

Distractions is the second LP from London based Sauna Youth. Stuart Ralston enjoyed their slight Buzzcocks tendencies.

The Mostar Diving Club - Horizontal Hotel

The Mostar Diving Club deliver their long awaited third album Horizontal Hotel, the follow up to the critically acclaimed Triumph of Hope.

Sunday 7 June 2015

Thousand Yard Stare - London Borderline - 6th June 2015

Twenty-three years since they last played a gig, Thousand Yard Stare staged a one off show at London's Borderline. At Even The Stars there was much excitement at the news of a reunion and we made the journey south to catch them. We, and the rest of the crowd, were not disappointed.

Saturday 6 June 2015

Bird To Beast / Foxtales / Megan Dixon-Hood / Reid Anderson - Manchester Night And Day - 5th June 2015

Tonight’s gig is the latest in a series of MUK Records club nights at the Night And Day. Featuring a varied and eclectic line-up, the evening also doubles up as a charity fundraiser for the Mustard Tree charity. Headliners Bird To Beast reveal nine songs from their yet-to-be-recorded second album and are supported by the eclectic mix of Reid Anderson, Megan Dixon-Hood and Foxtales.

Introducing - Bathymetry

This week's tips on Shell Zenner's Amazing Radio show are Bathymetry.  A three-piece hailing from Warrington, Carlisle and Washington State USA, they've set up camp in the North West. They release their self-titled debut album on Monday and play a launch show at Aigburth Cricket Club tonight. We spoke to Ariel from the band to find out more.

Thursday 4 June 2015

Courteeners / Liam Frost / Louie Louie - Liverpool O2 Academy - 3rd June 2015

Ahead of their huge sold-out Heaton Park homecoming gig on Friday, we caught Courteeners in an intimate warm-up show at Liverpool's O2 Academy mixing together a set of songs from across their four albums to date as they strive to pick the perfect setlist for the biggest gig of their career. Support came from the people's poet Liam Frost and his band and thrilling Manchester-based newcomers Louie Louie.