Monday, 30 March 2020

TRACK BY TRACK : Harry Stafford With Guitar-Shaped Hammers - Gothic Urban Blues


Harry Stafford might be known to some of you as lead singer and guitarist of cult Manchester 80s band Inca Babies. He's continued to make music, most recently under his own name and last Friday he released his latest album Gothic Urban Blues made with his band Guitar-Shaped Hammers. Harry took time out from isolation to walk us through the ten tracks that make up the record.

Friday, 27 March 2020

TRACK OF THE DAY 2 : Ist Ist - A New Love Song


A New Love Song is the fifth track to be revealed from Ist Ist's forthcoming debut album Architecture. It's a radical reworking, more like a complete reinvention, of one of their earliest songs, slowing it down and taking the fierce intensity of the original early live favourite into something more glacial and majestic.

TRACK OF THE DAY : Slyrydes - I Claim To Be Intelligent


Galway's Slyrydes return with their fifth single I Claim To Be Intelligent. Skeletal in parts, frantic, cluttered and urgent in others and accompanied by a simple video that captures perfectly the themes of mental health and trying to live up to others' expectations, it's the sound of band starting to broaden their horizons as they record their debut album.

Thursday, 26 March 2020

Document - A Camera Wanders All Night EP


Document released their debut EP A Camera Wanders All Night last week. Across five songs the Manchester-based five-piece set their own punk agenda that stands them out from many of their contemporaries with a uncompromisingly violent brutalist approach to their art that forces you to stand up and listen to them.

TRACK OF THE DAY : Natalie McCool - Closure


Closure is the latest single to be taken from Natalie McCool's forthcoming third album due for release at some point later this year. As the title suggests, the song deals with the aftermath of a break-up and finally turning your back on the past and looking forward.

Wednesday, 25 March 2020

The Slow Readers Club - Interview


With their new album The Joy Of The Return nestled in the midweek top five album chart we caught up with The Slow Readers Club's front man Aaron Starkie on the phone to chat about the album's birth, its lyrical themes and artwork as well as the impact of the COVID-19 virus on the band's plans and why their dedicated fan base is so important to them.

Monday, 23 March 2020

TRACK OF THE DAY : Janileigh Cohen - Nothin' Blues


Nothin' Blues is the first new material from Janileigh Cohen in 2020. A live solo performance of the song recently posted to her You Tube channel showcases the Boltonian's stunning evocative voice against a simple setting of an acoustic guitar to magical effect.

Friday, 20 March 2020

TRACK OF THE DAY 2 : Koala Club - No Surprise


Koala Club's second single No Surprise follows hot on the heels of January's 360 single and part of a series of releases planned through 2020. It's got an earworm quality to it from the jangling guitars at the start into the chorus - and looks set to build on their growing fan base and local radio support from the likes of BBC Introducing.

TRACK OF THE DAY : The Lounge Society - Generation Game


The Lounge Society have just signed to indie label Speedy Wunderground and their debut single, all five and a half glorious minutes of it, taking aim at the class and age divide in the way that young people are looked down upon by the media, particularly if they happen also to be working class.

Wednesday, 18 March 2020

TRACK OF THE DAY : Asthmatic Harp - Bird Of Paradise


Bird Of Paradise is the first track to be taken from Asthmatic Harp's forthcoming EP Things We Learned To Live With that's due out in the summer. It's accompanied by a live performance video that strips away the autoharp of the original recording into a more traditional acoustic track that still retains the fragile, delicate intricate beauty of the original.

Sunday, 15 March 2020

The Slow Readers Club - The Joy Of The Return


The Joy Of The Return is The Slow Readers Club's fourth studio album and their first as a full-time band as they aim to follow-up the chart success of its predecessor Build A Tower. Across eleven songs they explore the state of the world, the obsession with social media and the divisive atmosphere it creates as well as revisiting some recurring lyrical themes with a more adventurous musical mindset that's been afforded to them as a full-time band.

The Lottery Winners - Interview


The Lottery Winners released their self-titled debut album on Friday. We caught up with Thom, Katie, Joe and Rob on the day of release just before their live performance at Manchester HMV. We talked about the excitement of the debut album, the trials and tribulations around its recording and release, their big upcoming Manchester Ritz headline and the amazing connection they have with their home town.

Saturday, 14 March 2020

The Lottery Winners - Manchester HMV - 13th March 2020


The Lottery Winners celebrated the launch of their self-titled debut album with a short in-store set at Manchester's HMV followed by a signing session.

Rews - Manchester Night People - 13th March 2020


Rews brought their Phoenix tour to Manchester's Night People on Friday night. The new three-piece line up came with a far heavier rockier edge to them, giving us pumped up takes on tracks from their debut Pyro and their forthcoming as-yet-unannounced follow-up.

Friday, 13 March 2020

TRACK OF THE DAY 2 : Ist Ist - Discipline


Discipline is the fourth track to be revealed from Ist Ist's forthcoming debut album Architecture. The live favourite has been in their set for the past year - and like Wolves, You're Mine and Black it's accompanied by a lyric video as Ist Ist attempt to create a body of work that's more than just audio.

Rews - Interview


Rews are embarking on a UK tour in support of Monsters, the second track to be taken from their forthcoming second album. Ahead of their Friday show at Night People in Manchester we caught up with Shauna to talk about the single, the new album, line-up changes and what to expect when they come to town.

TRACK OF THE DAY 1 : The Red Stains - Mother's Ruin (Live)


The Red Stains are one of the hottest most-talked about new bands in town at the moment, having secured a Kendal Calling appearance without a published record to their name. They precede the release of their as-yet-unannounced debut single in April with a couple of live tracks recorded at The Railway Inn in Didsbury last November on their Soundcloud. Mother's Ruin sees Natalie lament on how she's been a disappointment to her parents.

Thursday, 12 March 2020

TRACK OF THE DAY : The Slow Readers Club - Killing Me


The Slow Readers Club have released Killing Me, their third single from their forthcoming The Joy Of The Return album due out on March 20th. It's an upbeat commentary on the state of modern society with a critical eye on who runs the world and the collective apathetic silence to it.

Julia Bardo - Manchester Yes - 11th March 2020


Julia Bardo played her "hometown" show in Yes's Pink Room in Manchester on Wednesday night to celebrate the launch of her debut EP Phase and to introduce new material as well as a cover of one of the most recognisable songs ever recorded.

Tuesday, 10 March 2020

Porridge Radio - Every Bad


Every Bad is Porridge Radio's debut album proper, introduced by three singles Lilac, Sweet and Circling that give a surface level view of the soul- and mind-searching that goes on across its eleven songs- plunging the darkest of human emotions and head spaces as a form of catharsis by opening up in music. It's a rewarding listen if you're prepared to immerse yourself fully into it free of distraction.

TRACK OF THE DAY : PINS - Ponytail


PINS have released their new single Ponytail and announced details of their third album Hot Slick, due for release on 29th May via their own Haus Of Pins label.  Following on from previous singles Hot Slick and Bad Girls Forever, the track confirms the three-piece's shift away from the post-punk sound of their albums Girls Like Us and Wild Nights towards the dancefloor.

Monday, 9 March 2020

The Lottery Winners - The Lottery Winners


The Lottery Winners' journey to releasing their debut album has been a long and winding one, full of pitfalls like a game of Snakes and Ladders, but Friday sees the happy ending of it finally being realised, a well-deserved triumph of an underdog who battled against the odds, the glass ceilings of the music business to create an album that's full of their DNA, blood, sweat and guts and sure to delight their growing fanbase.

Sunday, 8 March 2020

Black Casino And The Ghost - Farewell Marshal Brunswick


Farewell Marshal Brunswick is Black Casino And The Ghost's third album and their first since 2015's Until The Waters Run Clear. It's a record that succeeds in pulling together many diverse ideas, styles and approaches and distilling them into an album that acts as a journey through its creators' minds.

Saturday, 7 March 2020

Dirty Laces - Interview


Dirty Laces release the video of their new single You ahead of an extensive nationwide UK tour. We caught up with them to find out a little more about them, their links with Bands FC, love of physical product and excitement about going on the road to new places.

Futureheads / Saytr Play / Jack Round / Mealtime - Manchester Niamos - 6th March 2020


Futureheads topped a four-band bill to celebrate the final night of the Unconvention Festival at Niamos in Hulme on Friday night supported by local acts Saytr Play, Jack Found and Mealtime.

Friday, 6 March 2020

John Bramwell / Dave Fidler - Darwen Library Theatre - 5th March 2020


John Bramwell brought his never-ending tour to Darwen's Library Theatre on Thursday night for a set mixing classics from his I Am Kloot days with tracks from his debut solo album Leave Alone The Empty Spaces and as-yet-unreleased material from his Full Harmonic Convergence project. Support came from Dave Fidler.

talker - Wax EP


Wax is Los Angeles-based talker's second EP, a journey of self-discovery set across six tracks including previous singles Keep Me Safe, Learning The Feeling and Suck Up plus three new songs.

TRACK OF THE DAY : Springfield - Liqourice


Liquorice is the third single from Whitehaven five-piece Springfield - a synth- and hook-heavy track that's their strongest piece of work to date.

Thursday, 5 March 2020

TRACK OF THE DAY : Jordan Allen - This Is The Rapture


This Is The Rapture is the second single of Jordan Allen's comeback following in the footsteps of Never Give It Up ahead of his headline show at Manchester Ritz on April 24th. The song is his most powerful statement to date and is accompanied by a video that captures the anger of the song at the state of the world.

Scuttlers - Interview


As Scuttlers release their latest single Leaders Of A Lost Generation ahead of a headline show at Manchester's Night And Day on March 21st, we caught up with Kaiden for a chat about the single, how the song reflects what's happening in society today and their plans for the future.

The Murder Capital / Working Men's Club / Odd Morris - London 100 Club - 4th March 2020


The Murder Capital signed off their UK and European tour in style before heading to conquer America with an intimate headline show at London's 100 Club on Wednesday night as part of Annie Mac's AMP Festival. Completing the line-up were Working Men's Club and fellow Dubliners Odd Morris.

Wednesday, 4 March 2020

Alesund / OLA / Luna - Salford Kings Arms - 3rd March 2020


Alesund brought their All Hail To Your Queen tour to the intimate surroundings of The Kings Arms in Salford on Tuesday night with support from OLA (One Little Atlas) and Luna, three very different acts but who each captivated the audience in their own way.

Tuesday, 3 March 2020

Julia Bardo - Phase EP


Phase is the four-track debut EP from Italian singer-songwriter Julia Bardo released this Friday via Wichita Recordings. Featuring recent singles I Wanna Feel Love and Please Don't Tell Me plus two brand new tracks, the EP showcases varied styles with Julia's exquisite vocals as the centrepiece.

Sunday, 1 March 2020

Dirty Laces / Cobain Jones - Manchester 33 Oldham St - 1st March 2020


To celebrate the impending release of new single You and an extensive UK tour, Dirty Laces announced two last minute intimate shows at 33 Oldham Street for this Sunday night that sold out in minutes when put on sale earlier in the week. We caught the second of the night where they demonstrated their continuing evolution as a band and introduced new material into the set. Support came from an acoustic solo set from Cobain Jones.

Déjà Vega / Football FC / The Big Peach - Manchester Deaf Institute - 29th February 2020


Déjà Vega played the biggest show of their career to date with a sold-out months in advance headline show at The Deaf Institute in Manchester on Saturday to conclude a successful nationwide tour in support of their new single Who We Are. Support came from Football FC and The Big Peach.

Ist Ist - Manchester Ritz - 29th February 2020


Ist Ist opened up the night for Ladytron at Manchester's Ritz on Saturday night with an early set that showcased both their forthcoming album Architecture as well as revisiting their two EPs Spinning Rooms and Everything Is Different Now and demonstrating that they're ready and waiting for playing these big stages in their own right.

Saturday, 29 February 2020

Liam Frost / Reid Anderson- Manchester Halle St Peters - 28th February 2020


It's been a decade and a half since Liam Frost announced himself to the music scene with a host of bright new prospect tags attached to him. Fate and the machinations of the industry have meant that he's never had the accolade he's deserved as one of the finest songwriters of his generation - and with the Pledge Music debacle which crippled the release of his third album The Latchkey Kid still resonating, he's decided to stop performing under his own name. His show at the resplendent surroundings of Halle St Peters church meant that he went out with a bang.

Friday, 28 February 2020

The Murder Capital / Egyptian Blue / Unorthodox Coolock / Junior Brother - Dublin Vicar Street - 27th February 2020


The Murder Capital's sold-out Vicar Street show was a sort of homecoming at the end of their triumphant UK tour where they filled venues across the land and left a trail of exhilarated gig-goers in their wake. The biggest show they've played so far in their adopted hometown brought friends together, celebrated those no longer with us and set a marker in the sand before they head off to conquer America.

Wednesday, 26 February 2020

The Murder Capital - Liverpool O2 Academy 2 - 25th February 2020


The Murder Capital completed their biggest UK tour to date with a packed-out show at Liverpool's O2 Academy 2. Keeping everything fresh by changing round the setlist from previous nights on the tour, they left another audience stunned by the ferocious intensity of their forty-minute live set.

TRACK OF THE DAY : Machine - Memories


Machine are a four-piece from Barnsley who've recently released their debut single Memories. They only formed as recently as November 2019 so for Memories to be brimming with such raw potential only four months into their existence is some achievement.

Tuesday, 25 February 2020

The Murder Capital / Egyptian Blue / Unorthodox Coolock - Birmingham O2 Institute - 24th February 2020


The Murder Capital's penultimate night of their UK tour called in at a sold out Birmingham O2 Institute 2 on a sedate Monday night with another exhilarating set that blew away the post-weekend cobwebs supported by Egyptian Blue and Unorthodox Coolock.

TRACK OF THE DAY : The Ryne Experience - Canopy


Canopy is the second track to be taken from Michigan-based The Ryne Experience's third album Funky Town that is due for release on April 3 via Under The Counter Records. The alt-country band have created a concept album about a man who has his identity and everything else about his life stolen and his journey of rediscovery.

Monday, 24 February 2020

Lanterns On The Lake - Interview


Lanterns On The Lake released their fourth studio album Spook The Herd on Friday containing the singles Baddies and Every Atom and seven other tracks. It's their first album since 2015's Beings and has already received universally positive reviews. We caught up with Hazel Wilde to talk about the birth of the album, the themes that inspired her writing and future plans.

TRACK OF THE DAY 2 : Lime - Surf And Turf


Surf and Turf is the debut single from Brighton-based four-piece Lime. Demanding we "get ready to get zesty" Surf And Turf is an impressive first outing from a band highly tipped by the likes of Loud Women to be a breakthrough act in 2020.

Magic Shoppe / The Kundalini Genie / Little Strange - Manchester Peer Hat - 23rd February 2020


Boston's The Magic Shoppe's European tour called in at The Peer Hat in Manchester on Sunday night as part of the 56th edition and fifth birthday party for the Astral Elevator club night.  Support came from The Kundalini Genie and Little Strange.

The Murder Capital / Egyptian Blue / Unorthodox Coolock - Sheffield Leadmill - 22nd February 2020


The Murder Capital's UK tour moved north on Saturday night to Sheffield's Leadmill for a sold-out show supported by Unorthodox Coolock and Egyptian Blue as the band of the moment continued their rapid rise through the thousand capacity venues of the UK to bigger places.

Yuka Tree - Manchester Castle Hotel - 23rd February 2020


Yuka Tree are one of a number of highly-tipped bands around Manchester at present, having recently released their debut single The Preacher and having sold-out their first headline show at the Eagle Inn. On Sunday night they opened for Harpans Kraft in the intimate surroundings of The Castle Hotel.

TRACK OF THE DAY 1 : Egyptian Blue - Never


In the middle of their UK tour supporting The Murder Capital, Egyptian Blue have released a new track Never taken from their forthcoming EP Body Of Itch out on April 10 as well as a series of UK dates of their own.

Saturday, 22 February 2020

TRACK OF THE DAY : Ist Ist - Black


Black is the third track to be taken from Ist Ist's forthcoming debut album Architecture, accompanied by an unsettling video that sees a woman haunted by the ghosts of her past.

The Murder Capital / Egyptian Blue / Unorthodox Coolock - London Electric Ballroom - 21st February 2020


The Murder Capital rolled into the capital on Friday night for a sold-out show at Camden's Electric Ballroom where 1,100 people witnessed a band on an unstoppable ascent to the very top with a forty-five minute set that at the times threatened to finish us all off. Support came from Egyptian Blue and Unorthodox Coolock.