Tuesday 26 December 2023

Déjà Vega / Velkro - Manchester Yes - 23rd December 2023

Déjà Vega saw out their most successful year to date with a show in the Pink Room of Yes in Manchester on Saturday night, adding a festive twist to their set.

Monday 11 December 2023

Music Feeds Live - 27th February 2024

Music Feeds Live has been announced today to take place at Manchester Apollo on 27th February 2024. Featuring the likes of James, The Slow Readers Club, Lanterns On The Lake and Chicane accompanied by the Joe Duddell Orchestra, the concert aims to raise money to fight food poverty. It will be hosted by Gary Neville, Jamie Carragher and Chris Hawkins.

The Johnny Marr Orchestra - Manchester Aviva Studios - 7th December 2023

Johnny Marr has proved unstoppable this year - juggling multiple projects and leaving an indelible mark on the music scene. From joining The Pretenders at Glastonbury to releasing a photography book and a Greatest Hits album, his relentless creativity and dedication has made it a truly prolific and unforgettable 2023 for the legendary guitarist. To commemorate his tenth anniversary as a solo artist, Johnny has just performed two homecoming concerts at Manchester’s Factory International Aviva Studios, where him and his band were joined by a 30-piece orchestra. Led by conductor Fiona Brice, the orchestra was assembled by Johnny himself and composed of musicians from across the North.

Saturday 9 December 2023

The Slow Readers Club - Manchester New Century - 8th December 2023

The Slow Readers Club completed their Manchester mash-up with the biggest show of the three, a sold out show at the imposing New Century. A career spanning greatest hits set was accompanied by a brand new song in front of an adoring hometown crowd who sang, danced and lost themselves in music for an hour and a half.

Thursday 7 December 2023

Tom A Smith / Jack Valero / Tom Abisgold - Manchester Deaf Institute Lodge - 6th December 2023

Sold out months in advance Tom A Smith brought his tour to The Lodge of Deaf Institute in Manchester on Wednesday. Wielding an impressive set of songs and a razor sharp live performance he marked himself out as very much an artist to watch develop and grow in 2024. Support came from Jack Valero and Tom Abisgold.

Wednesday 6 December 2023

Lanterns On The Lake / Sophie Jamieson - Manchester Band On The Wall - 5th December 2023

Lanterns On The Lake brought their UK tour in support of this year's fifth studio album Versions Of Us to Manchester's Band On The Wall on Tuesday night. In front of an enthralled and attentive Manchester audience they played the album in full plus standout tracks from its Mercury Prize nominated predecessor Spook The Herd and a couple of old favourites. Support came from fellow Bella Union artist Sophie Jamieson.

Saturday 2 December 2023

The Slow Readers Club / Test Card Girl - Manchester Canvas - 1st December 2023

The Slow Readers Club played an extra-special show on Friday night at Canvas as the second part of their Manchester Mash-Up trio of shows. Accompanied by a wonderful seven-piece ensemble arranged by Joe Duddell, they performed a sixteen-song set of fan favourites and deep cuts that swerved many of their best-known songs yet held an audience captivated by the raw stripped down beauty of the music and Aaron Starkie's gorgeous voice. Support came from Test Card Girl.

Thursday 30 November 2023

Dirty Laces - Blink For Nothing

Eight years into their existence Dirty Laces have this week released their debut album Blink For Nothing, the culmination of a journey from a bunch of lads seemingly without focus and a plan to a band with a clear vision and ambition about exactly how they want to sound. It's an impressive first full length collection of songs and testament to their steadfast belief in their music.

Sunday 26 November 2023

Spaceheads / Paddy Steer - Manchester Carlton Club - 25th November 2023

Spaceheads, featuring Andy Diagram of James on trumpet and Richard Harrison on drums, played their first post-pandemic gig at a sold-out Carlton Club in Whalley Range on Saturday.

Saturday 25 November 2023

The Slow Readers Club / May Payne - Manchester Yes Basement - 24th November 2023

The Slow Readers Club opened up their three-show Manchester Mash Up with the most intimate hometown gig they've played in nearly a decade. Eighty or so lucky fans got the chance to watch them up and close and personal and pick the setlist for a show in the basement of Yes. With songs selected from all the way back to their self-titled debut through to this year's Knowledge Freedom Power and including a few real rare live gems, they delighted an ecstatic crowd. Support came from the very excellent emerging Manchester artist May Payne who performed a half hour solo set on keys and guitar.

Friday 24 November 2023

TRACK OF THE DAY : Rosellas - The Same Curse

Rosellas continue their impressive volume of output with a new single Same Curse and b-sides Feels Like Yesterday and Who Remembers Love? ahead of support slots with The Stanleys and Starsailor to top off an impressive year of growth in the size of their own shows both in Manchester and further afield.

Sunday 19 November 2023

Ist Ist - Manchester The Yard - 17th/18th November 2023

Classic albums gigs have become a thing in recent years, heritage bands recreating an early album that's still the fan favourite by which they're defined. A current band taking on all three of their albums to date in one night is unheard of - but that's the challenge Ist Ist placed upon themselves as they celebrated the end of their most successful year to date where they laid down concrete markers both here and abroad both in the charts and on the stage where they're at their best. The first night sold out straight away and a second night followed it at The Yard, one of the city's best yet under-utilised venues.

Sunday 12 November 2023

The Murder Capital / Teeth Machine - Liverpool Invisible Wind Factory - 11th November 2023

The Murder Capital continued their Clown's Reflection tour on Saturday night at the Invisible Wind Factory with a set taken heavily from their second album Gigi's Recovery as well as older favourites from their debut When I Have Fears supported by Teeth Machine.

Sunday 5 November 2023

Spangled / The Assist / Arkayla - Manchester Gorilla - 4th November 2023

Spangled headlined the reopening of Gorilla's gig space on Saturday night supported by Walsall's The Assist and Manchester's own Arkayla. A perfect choice for the first night back, a Manchester band filling a room that is a rite of passage on so many local band's journeys to bigger spaces, Spangled delighted a packed crowd with an hour of songs that demonstrated their readiness to take that step themselves.

Friday 3 November 2023

The 76 Club - Interview

The 76 Club release their new single Beside Myself today. We caught up with drummer Riley for a chat about the single, how their name pays tribute to an iconic venue in their home town of Burton-on-Trent and how they've built up a following further afield as well as their plans for the future.

Wednesday 1 November 2023

Rews / IDestroy - Manchester Deaf Institute - 31st October 2023

Rews continued their tour in support of their third album Meridians with a Tuesday night show at the Deaf Institute supported by Bristol's IDestroy. Two very different sets warmed up a crowd that drawn in by the sheer force of energy coming from the stage on a cold Autumn night.

Tuesday 31 October 2023

James / The Snuts - London Shepherd's Bush Empire - 30th October 2023

James concluded their 2023 live activity with their most intimate London show in years headlining Absolute Radio's 15th Birthday celebrations at Shepherd's Bush Empire. A hit-heavy set with a few curveballs for the hardcore fans saw them sign off the year in celebratory mood whilst still finding new ways to twist and turn old classics. Support came from The Snuts.

Sunday 29 October 2023

The Mission / Theatre Of Hate / Ist Ist - London Roundhouse - 28th October 2023

The Mission concluded their short UK tour with a triumphant first-ever performance at London's iconic Roundhouse venue playing a career-spanning set in front of a dedicated adoring audience. Support came from Theatre Of Hate and Manchester's Ist Ist.

Saturday 28 October 2023

Shed Seven / The Slow Readers Club - Glasgow Barrowland - 26th October 2023

As they approach their 30th anniversary, and a new album, Shed Seven hit the road, with this tour serving as both a preview of the new and a celebration of the old. They've asked The Slow Readers Club along as special guests.

Thursday 26 October 2023

James - Nottingham Royal Centre - 25th October 2023

 James concluded this year’s show with Orca 22 and the Manchester Inspirational Voices Gospel Choir with an exhilarating rearranged show at Nottingham’s Royal Centre. Switching the set around from the previous night in Bath, this collaboration felt at its most powerful yet and the love and connection between band, orchestra and choir fuelled them and the orchestra on as James took us on a journey through their forty-year career.

Wednesday 25 October 2023

James - Bath Forum - 24th October 2023

James returned to Bath for the first of two shows rescheduled from their May tour with Orca 22 conducted by Joe Duddell and The Manchester Inspirational Voices Gospel Choir. A two-set performance captured songs all the way from their beginnings in the 1980s through to their last album All The Colours Of You, stopping at most bases in between. With perfect sound allowing all the subtlety in the instrumentation and vocal interactions to be heard, they built slowly into a crescendo of some of their best loved songs at the end.

Tuesday 17 October 2023

TRACK OF THE DAY : Better Joy - Hard To Love

Hard To Love is the debut single from Manchester-based Better Joy.  Already having picked up airplay on 6 Music and performed at Beyond The Music festival, the band fronted by Bria Keely introduce themselves with a wonderfully rhythmic immediate earworm of a track about the joy of finding love and accepting yourself for who you are.

Sunday 15 October 2023

The Blinders / Yasmin Coe - Salford White Hotel - 13th October 2023

As they prepare to return with their third album, newly signed to a major label, The Blinders performed two low-key shows at the back end of last week. After a sold-out show in London on Thursday, they headed back to their adopted home for an intimate night amongst friends at The White Hotel in Salford, a venue that made it feel like they were returning to their roots. With five new songs in the set alongside old favourites they delighted an ecstatic crowd that welcomed them back like homecoming heroes. Support came from Yasmin Coe.

Saturday 14 October 2023

Déjà Vega / Mewn / The Rolling People / Uninvited / Ether Mech / Ellen Beth Abdi - Manchester Beyond The Music Festival - 13th / 14th October 2023

As part of Beyond The Music, the new music conference taking place at Manchester Central and other venues across the city, a key element is a showcase of new and emerging talent from the city and further afield.  We caught up with some recommended acts across Friday afternoon and early Saturday evening - Déjà Vega, Mewn, The Rolling People, Uninvited, Ether Mech and Ellen Beth Abdi.

Thursday 12 October 2023

The Last Dinner Party / Picture Parlour - Manchester Academy 2 - 12th October 2023

The Last Dinner Party are the name on everyone's lips. Whether it be the naysayers who dismiss them as industry plants or those throwing best band in the world accolades at them and everything it between, the six-piece have made waves with just three singles to their name. We caught their sold-out show at Academy 2 and witnessed a band set for greatness hold the audience spellbound for an hour. Support came from the magnificent Picture Parlour, a hometown show of sorts performing songs written a walk away in a Manchester flat.

Friday 6 October 2023

Dream Wife / Prima Queen / Ash Kenazi - Manchester Canvas - 5th October 2023

Dream Wife opened their UK and Ireland tour in support of their recent third album Social Lubrication in a packed Canvas basement on Thursday night. Celebrating the diversity of their crowd with a message of community and a fuck you to those who seek to discriminate, they stormed through an energetic set that got the crowd moving from the off. Support came from the depleted but nevertheless impressive Prima Queen and Ash Kenazi.

Saturday 30 September 2023

Seb Lowe / The Guest List - Manchester New Century Hall - 29th September 2023

Seb Lowe played his biggest headline show to date on Friday night with a sell-out show in front of 1,300 fans at Manchester's New Century Hall. Politically and socially astute, with tunes to back up his poetic bravado, he announced, if it wasn't already clear, that he's a force to be reckoned with and set for bigger and bolder things. Support came from Altrincham's The Guest List.

Friday 22 September 2023

TRACK OF THE DAY : Seb Lowe - Billionaire Extraordinaire

Seb Lowe is pretty prolific these days and his latest track Billionaire Extraordinaire is accompanied by a b-side Don't Go. The single deals with the pressures placed on young people down to expectations placed on them by their peers and social media, but leaves with a positive message that coming together is a way of dealing with them.

Tuesday 19 September 2023

Naked Lungs - Newcastle The Tyne Bar - 17th September 2023

Naked Lungs, a ferocious four piece post-punk noise band from Ireland, rolled into the Toon on Sunday evening and left a lasting impression in more ways than one.

Sunday 17 September 2023

Little Sparrow / J P Worsfold / Eva - Manchester Portico Library - 16th September 2023

Little Sparrow returned to the beautiful Portico Library, one of Manchester's best kept secrets, a year after her first performance there for a trio show revealing new material and reinvigorating old favourites.  Support came from J P Worsfold and Eva who delivered compelling sets perfectly observed by a respectful audience in a stunning setting.

Thursday 14 September 2023

TRACK OF THE DAY : The Miserable Rich - FHS

FHS is the second single to be taken from The Miserable Rich's forthcoming album Overcome which will be released digitally on December 1st and physically in February 2024. A reinvention of an old track criminally hidden away on the b-side of their standalone single Anything's Possible, the band are sounding as fresh and strong as ever.

Sunday 10 September 2023

Ellen Beth Abdi - Manchester Soup - 8th September 2023

Ellen Beth Abdi's first headline show packed out the basement of Soup in Manchester's Northern Quarter despite currently having no released material. Performing tracks from her debut album and more over a seventy minute set she impressed the audience with the breadth of material and her showstopping voice.

Sunday 3 September 2023

The Murder Capital / She's In Parties - Manchester Psych Fest - 2nd September 2023

Manchester Psych Fest took over venues along the Oxford Road corridor on Saturday night. With clashes galore, we caught just two bands - our first time seeing She’s In Parties at the Deaf Institute and our old favourites The Murder Capital in The Ritz.

Saturday 2 September 2023

Head For The Hills Festival (The Slow Readers Club / Cut Capers / Gentlemen Of Few / Katherine Priddy / Izzie Walsh) - Bury Burrs Park - 1st September 2023

Head For The Hills has been resurrected by its creators The Met in Bury at a new location since the pandemic. Moving away from its traditional home of Ramsbottom Cricket Club, the picturesque surroundings of Burrs Country Park are its new home, the two stages situated either side of the railway bridge on the East Lancashire Steam Railway. Impeccably organised as ever, the festival was a wonderful day out, with a diverse line-up across its two stages with lots of family activity for kids during the day and supporting local businesses with the food and drink offerings. Friday's main stage saw The Slow Readers Club headline with sets from Cut Capers, Gentlemen Of Few, Katherine Priddy and Izzie Walsh.

Monday 28 August 2023

VLURE / Crimewave / Sugarstone - Manchester Night And Day - 27th August 2023

VLURE made a long-awaited return to Manchester after eighteen months bringing their high-energy all-inclusive electro-rave to the Night And Day on Sunday night as part of their nationwide Music Venue Trust show. Support came from Sugarstone and Crimewave.

Saturday 26 August 2023

Thus Love / Van Houten - Manchester Yes - 25th August 2023

Thus Love delighted a packed Pink Room at Yes on Friday night with a set of tracks from their 2022 album Memorial as well as some brand new tracks from its unreleased follow-up supported by Leeds six-piece Van Houten.

Sunday 20 August 2023

Johnny Marr - Frome Cheese And Grain - 16th August 2023

Johnny Marr is currently in the midst of a Summer tour that’s seeing him play a combination of festivals and independent venues across the UK and Europe. One of the hardest working musicians on the scene, the legendary guitarist and solo artist kickstarted the week with a euphoric set at the Cheese and Grain in Frome - and we were delighted to be there.

Saturday 12 August 2023

James / Happy Mondays / Girlband - London Crystal Palace Bowl - 11th August 2023

James completed their mainland UK summer season with a headline show at Crystal Palace Bowl as part of the South Facing Festival, thirty-three years to the day that they supported The Cure in the same venue.  Support came from old friends Happy Mondays who delivered a greatest hits set to an reminiscing crowd and the excellent Girlband from Nottingham who won over a whole new set of admirers with an energetic and powerful set.

Tuesday 8 August 2023

TRACK OF THE DAY : The Miserable Rich - Glue

The Miserable Rich return after a decade-long hiatus with a new single Glue, a deeply personal song to front man James de Malplaquet and his wife Sarah about the loss of their first son and the impact it had on their lives.

Saturday 29 July 2023

James / Razorlight / The Clause / Tom A Smith - Dundee Slessor Gardens - 28th July 2023

It's our first ever visit to Dundee, the biggest city on the mainland UK we've never visited before, for James performance at Slessor Gardens, close to the river front and the V&A Museum supported by Razorlight and the up-and-coming The Clause and Tom A Smith. A hit-heavy set with a beautiful tribute to Sinead O'Connor delighted an enthusiastic and passionate Scottish crowd as James played the city for the first time since 1986.

Friday 21 July 2023

Inspiral Carpets - Dunfermline PJ Molloys - 20th July 2023

Stuart Ralston made the short trip down the road to Dunfermline as Inspiral Carpets continue their renaissance. 

Friday 14 July 2023

Morrissey / The Slow Readers Club / The Lottery Winners - Leeds Millennium Square - 12th July 2023

Morrissey's UK tour arrived in Leeds on Wednesday night for the biggest show of the tour at Millennium Square supported by The Slow Readers Club and The Lottery Winners. Stuart Ralston travelled to Leeds for the evening and was completely blown away.

Sunday 9 July 2023

James / Jamie Webster / Tom A Smith - Halifax Piece Hall - 8th July 2023

Thunderstorms couldn't stop James on Saturday night in Halifax's Piece Hall. Despite having to stop their set for twenty minutes midway through as lightning threatened to strike the stage after an hour's torrential downpour that soaked a resilient crowd, they returned with a set of crowd favourites to reward the audience for their patience as they started to dry out. Support came from Tom A Smith and Jamie Webster, who had even worse fortune with the weather.

Saturday 8 July 2023

James / Tom A Smith - Halifax Piece Hall - 7th July 2023

James played the first of two nights in the remarkably beautiful surroundings of Halifax Piece Hall on Friday night. Performing with six singers from the Manchester Inspirational Voices Gospel Choir they moved from songs from the early 1980s right through to the current day with effortless ease, mixing their songs of celebration of life, death and everything in between in front of a celebratory audience in the late evening sun.

Friday 7 July 2023

Blossoms / Inspiral Carpets / Seb Lowe - Manchester Castlefield Bowl - 6th July 2023

Blossoms returned to the scene of their triumphant 2017 headline show at Castlefield Bowl that saw out the end of the era of their debut album for the first of two huge shows to mark the end of the Ribbon Around The Bomb era, their fourth album and third number one. Support came from old friends Inspiral Carpets and rising star Seb Lowe.

Wednesday 5 July 2023

James - Leicester De Montfort Hall - 4th July 2023

James headed to Leicester's De Montfort Hall on Tuesday night with Orca 22 and the Manchester Inspirational Voices Gospel Choir for a sold-out warm-up show for their date at the Odeon of Herodes Atticus theatre show at the Acropolis in Greece next week. Their set covered most of their career from their days on Sire in the 1980s right through to a brand new song written for their Be Opened By The Wonderful orchestrated album that came out last month.

Monday 3 July 2023

John Bramwell / Harriet Bradshaw - Manchester The Yard - 2nd July 2023

Sunday afternoon saw three of John Bramwell's Full Harmonic Convergence perform an intimate set of songs from their forthcoming album as well as selected cuts from John's debut solo album and his I Am Kloot back catalogue to an attentive appreciative audience at The Yard in Cheetham Hill in Manchester interspersed with John's stories of life and experiences in the music business.

Grian Chatten - Manchester Night And Day Cafe - 2nd July 2023

Five years after Fontaines D.C. played a barnstorming set on the very same stage the songwriter of his generation Grian Chatten returned to perform tracks from his stunning debut solo album Chaos For The Fly. Jason Wynne reports back from the Piccadilly Records out-store at Night And Day Cafe on Sunday evening.

The Slow Readers Club / Ist Ist - Holmfirth Picturedrome - 2nd July 2023

The Slow Readers Club concluded a trio of weekend appearances with a sold out show at the Holmfirth Picturedrome on Sunday night supported by fellow Mancunians Ist Ist. A career spanning set delighted a rapt audience for ninety minutes touching all bases from their self-titled debut to this year's Knowledge Freedom Power.