Sunday, 18 August 2019

James - Doncaster Racecourse - 17th August 2019

Sometimes the best gigs can take place in the strangest surroundings.  Five o'clock in the evening, in bright sunshine, on a stage at a racecourse with a mix of die-hard fans and those out for a drunken day at the races and a huge gap and fences between band and audience weren't auspicious, but somehow James turned their Doncaster racecourse show into a triumph.

Saturday, 17 August 2019

The Murder Capital - Dublin Thomas House - 16th August 2019

As part of The Murder Capital’s extensive touring schedule promoting their brilliant new album When I Have Fears one hundred lucky people were fortunate enough to witness a very special matinee performance on the launch date at the Thomas House public house in Dublin. Jason Wynne was one of them, having flown in from Manchester for the double-header of this and their sold-out Button Factory show in the evening.

Friday, 16 August 2019

James - Edinburgh Princes St Gardens - 15th August 2019

James defied a whole host of technical issues and Edinburgh's draconian decibel limitations to deliver a celebratory evening against the stunning backdrop of the castle towering above the stage in the picturesque surroundings of Princes St Gardens as part of the city's Summer Sessions.

Control Of The Going - Reflections EP

Control Of The Going today release their new EP Reflections, their first new material since their debut album I Love You But It's Going To Rain. Their new line-up captures much of what made people fall for their debut, but also demonstrates that they're a band moving forwards in developing their sound.

Tuesday, 13 August 2019

Control Of The Going - Interview

Control Of The Going return on Friday with a new EP called Reflections, a series of songs recorded before front man Liam Hart relocated to Chicago last year. We talk about the songs on the EP and how the transatlantic distance between Illinois and Tameside hasn't dampened their creative spark.

Monday, 12 August 2019

Average Sex / Tim Burgess / Feral Family / Leon The Pig Farmer - Manchester Castle Hotel - 12th August 2019

Average Sex brought their tour to a packed Castle Hotel on Monday night for a sweaty show of new material and tracks from their two EPs and they were joined on two songs by special guest Tim Burgess, whose Ogenesis label has put those records out. They were supported by Feral Family and two spoken word sets from Leon The Pig Farmer.

The Murder Capital - When I Have Fears

The Murder Capital's debut album is one of the most anticipated releases of the year on the back of three radio playlisted singles. They only tell a fraction of the story of an album that plunges the depths of human emotion, deals in human reaction to the most tragic of circumstances and asks the most important questions about love and life.

Sunday, 11 August 2019

The Maitlands - Manchester Academy 3 - 10th August 2019

The Maitlands played their biggest headline Manchester show to date on Saturday night at Academy 3. Always entertaining, more musically composed than ever and with their unique front man Carl Ingram at the helm, their forty-minute set contained crowd incursions, sardonic wit and a growing collection of outsider tunes that stand them out from the pack.

Saturday, 10 August 2019

Nev Cottee - Manchester Vinyl Revival - 10th August 2019

In support of his album River's Edge and the launch show at Band On The Wall in Manchester next Friday Nev Cottee played an intimate five-song in-store set at Vinyl Revival with just guitarist Jimmy for accompaniment.

The Blinders / Julia Bardo / Millie McLeod - Blackburn Museum - 8th August 2019

The Blinders headed to Blackburn on Thursday night for an intimate stripped-down set in the unusual setting of Blackburn Museum supported by Julia Bardo and Millie McLeod. A seventy-five minute set saw them play very different versions of songs from their debut album Columbia and a series of songs from their second album writing sessions.

Friday, 9 August 2019

TRACK OF THE DAY - Heavy Salad - Battery Acid

Following a euphoric appearance at the Blackthorn Festival a couple of weeks ago, Manc psych trio Heavy Salad celebrate the launch of Battery Acid with a video and a couple of gigs in Manchester this weekend.  Stuart Ralston has a listen and watches their new video.

Thursday, 8 August 2019

TRACK OF THE DAY : Berries - Silent

London-trio Berries return with a new single Silent ahead of their biggest headline show to date in November. Premiered by John Kennedy on Radio X, the single has also seen them played already on Germany's biggest station 1 Live and is the first track to be taken from a new EP scheduled for release in November.

Tuesday, 6 August 2019

James - Vancouver Orpheum - 31st July 2019

James crossed back into Canada last week as part of their North American tour for a seated show at Vancouver's Orpheum Theatre which allowed them to experiment with the setlist as they have been doing across this set of dates.  Our friend Celia caught the show and reported back for us.

Sunday, 4 August 2019

The Blinders / Saytr Play / Déjà Vega / Ryan Jarvis / Dantevilles / Scuttlers - Liverpool Jimmy's - 3rd August 2019

The Blinders headlined the opening Saturday in Jimmy's new Liverpool site in the sauna like conditions of the basement venue supported by an impressive list of bands who'd made the journey up the East Lancs in Saytr Play, Déjà Vega, Ryan Jarvis, Dantevilles and Scuttlers.

Saturday, 3 August 2019

John Bramwell / Secluded Sea - Hebden Bridge Trades Club - 2nd August 2019

John Bramwell made a welcome return to his second home Hebden Bridge Trades Club for an intimate set where he revisited I Am Kloot classics as well as songs from his Johnny Dangerously period of the early 1990s, supported by Secluded Sea.

Friday, 2 August 2019

TRACK OF THE DAY : Natalie McCool - Someone Nue

Natalie McCool has released Someone Nue, her second single of the year, via Modern Sky and Warner. Whilst revealing a more electronic sound to her music, it still retains her standout voice as she comes to terms with the realisation that a relationship is coming to a natural end.

Saturday, 27 July 2019

James / Dear Boy - Royal Oak Music Theatre - 20th July 2019

Royal Oak saw the latest leg of James' North American tour last Saturday. IKWIHF caught his final show of his run on this trip and reports back.

James - Cleveland Agora Theatre - 19th July 2019

James' North American tour continued last week with a show in Cleveland Ohio. As is the nature of their sets, they turned the previous night on its head and came out with a very different looking line up of songs. IKWIHF reports back.

Friday, 26 July 2019

The Murder Capital / Egyptian Blue - Liverpool Arts Club - 25th July 2019

The Murder Capital brought their preview tour for their debut album When I Have Fears to the loft of Liverpool Arts Club and left another packed crowd gasping in awe at the intensity of their live performance and the revelatory insight they give into their hearts, mind and darkest thoughts. Support came from Brighton's impressive four-piece Egyptian Blue.

TRACK OF THE DAY : Kaze - Keep Me Loving You

Kaze release their first single of the year today - a live version of a track called Keep Me Loving You that shows a more soft and gentle side to the band compared to their earlier work.

Monday, 22 July 2019

James - Buffalo Canalside - 18th July 2019

James' long US tour with the Psychedelic Furs rolled into Buffalo last Friday night, the band's first performance in the city for twenty-five years. IKWIHF covered the show for us, noting the band's appeal to a younger audience who connected to the newer songs from Living In Extraordinary Times and the message in those songs.

EXCLUSIVE : Granfalloon - Elephant

Granfalloon's latest single The Elephant is a taster from their forthcoming second album. We're delighted to be asked to do the online reveal for the single after it was previewed on BBC Introducing last weekend.

Sunday, 21 July 2019

The Murder Capital / Roxy Girls - Sunderland Independent - 20th July 2019

The Murder Capital continued their seemingly endless tour with a Saturday night debut in Sunderland at the Independent, one of those wonderful small venues that's fighting against the odds in towns and cities off the usual circuit, supported by local heroes Roxy Girls.

Friday, 19 July 2019

TRACK OF THE DAY : Liam Frost - The Slow Knife

The Slow Knife is the second single to be taken from Liam Frost's Latchkey Kid album that gets a full release on September 13.

Thursday, 18 July 2019

EXCLUSIVE : Control Of The Going - Reflection

With front man Liam Hart moving to the USA last year, it looked like things had come to a close for Control Of The Going. But before he departed, the latest incarnation of the band recorded an EP entitled Reflections that they plan to release next month. We're delighted to be able to reveal the (almost) title track of the EP entitled Reflection.

LIINES / Sink Ya Teeth - Manchester Albert Square - 17th July 2019

The final night of four curated events by Dave Haslam in the tent in Albert Square for Manchester International Festival saw local heroines Liines take to the stage alongside Norwich's Sink Ya Teeth to delight a packed crowd that had braved the Mancunian rain.

Tuesday, 16 July 2019

The Blinders / Witch Fever / The Pagans SOH - Manchester Albert Square - 16th July 2019

The Blinders headlined night three of live music curated by Dave Haslam in Festival Square as part of Manchester International Festival. Mixing in new material with tracks from their debut album Columbia, they set the tent bouncing more than has seen before ably supported by Witch Fever and Pagans SOH.

GHUM / Aufbau Principle - Manchester Castle Hotel - 15th July 2019

A warm evening outside always turn the intimate music room of The Castle Hotel into a sweatbox and tonight was no exception as first Glasgow's Aufbau Principle and then headliners GHUM battled against the heat to deliver two exciting and very contrasting sets to a packed crowd.

Joanna Sternberg - Then I Try Some More

Then I Try Some More is Joanna Sternberg's debut album. It's a remarkable record in many senses - rather than its lowest of lo-fi recording methods hampering the songs and their message, it simply makes them feel even starker, more affecting as they weave their way through many of the darker aspects of the human condition and emotions across just nine songs and twenty-six minutes. It's an album that could change and save lives, the message more important than the songs individually.

Monday, 15 July 2019

Working Men's Club - Manchester Albert Square - 15th July 2019

Working Men's Club opened up the first of three nights of some of the best independent talent in the North West curated by Dave Haslam that puts the Manchester (and surrounding areas) into the Manchester International Festival. A half-hour set in a packed tent felt like it was a turning point for the band as they celebrated the release of their second single Teeth today.

James - Toronto Rebel - 5th July 2019

James opened their North American tour with The Psychedelic Furs on a steamy night in Toronto. Our friend IKWIHF was there to report back on their long-awaited return.

The Empty Page - Interview

The Empty Page's new single He's Very Good At Swimming tackles the subject of how society views the victims of rape and other forms of sexual assault and some of the high-profile cases where the accused was dealt with leniently despite their guilt because of their social standing. We caught up with them to talk about the single, the message behind it and to find out a little more about the band and their plans.

Sunday, 14 July 2019

Stealing Sheep - Manchester Albert Square - 13th July 2019

For those of us not interested in the artistic extravagance of most of MIF's program, the tent in Albert Square is something of a haven with free live music on offer to complement the very un-Mancunian sunny weather. Saturday night saw Stealing Sheep bring their colourful live show for an hour performance that was as much a theatrical performance as it was a gig.

Wednesday, 10 July 2019

TRACK OF THE DAY : The Murder Capital - Don't Cling To Life

Don't Cling To Life is only the third track to be released by Dublin's The Murder Capital, but is certain to increase the hype around the band as they prepare for the release of their debut album When I Have Fears, due for release on August 16 in the midst of a gruelling touring  schedule.

Monday, 8 July 2019

Danny Mahon - Interview

Most Mancunians with their ear to the ground will know of Danny Mahon. For years he's played to packed out venues, picked up some impressive support slots and written songs that capture the spirit and the ups and downs of living in our home town. He's been quiet for a couple of years but is coming back with a headline show later this month and a set of new songs in tow. We caught up with him for a chat to find out more.


LYZA has recently her latest single release Regret with a video filmed in Manchester's Victoria Baths, accompanying a heartfelt and painfully honest reflection over a past relationship.

Friday, 5 July 2019

Vukovar - Interview

On their Facebook page, which you sense is a reluctant nod to mainstream communication, Vukovar describe themselves as "from the Brutalist wastelands in the North of England. Ultra-Realism. Depravity. Monotony. Concrete. Hedonism. Silence. Vukovar are idealists, voyeurs and totalitarians." As they release Cremator, their seventh album in four years, we try to get behind the mystery....

Wednesday, 3 July 2019

MarthaGunn - Interview

MarthaGunn featured in our top tips for 2018 and promptly disappeared. They've returned though in 2019 with two singles - Saint Cecilia and Love And Emotion. We caught up with them for a chat about their name, what they did in 2018, the two singles and their plans for the future.

Saturday, 29 June 2019

Liam Frost - Didsbury St James Church - 28th June 2019

Didsbury Arts Festival welcomed Liam Frost for an intimate solo show in the hallowed surroundings of St James Church on Friday night. A career-spanning set and no shortage of funny and poignant between song anecdotes left the attentive crowd transfixed and appreciative of one of the Manchester's finest ever songwriters.

Thursday, 27 June 2019

TRACK OF THE DAY : Space Monkeys - Submarine

Submarine is the first track to be released from Space Monkeys' forthcoming album, their first recorded material for twenty years. With a video recorded by a friend called Cobbie who was inspired to make his first ever music video on hearing about the band's troubles with the collapse of Pledge Music.

Wednesday, 26 June 2019

Nev Cottee - River's Edge

Nev Cottee's fourth album River's Edge is released this Friday, the follow-up to 2017's Broken Flowers. River's Edge is a wonderfully intimate album, soft and gentle in its approach with an intimacy that will draw the listener in and intoxicate them with his rough yet comforting voice as he sings about love and loss and the spaces in between, cementing his place in the hearts of those that have been fortunate to cross the path of one of the most underrated and underappreciated songwriters of this decade.

TRACK OF THE DAY : Weavers Wave - Sweet

Sweet is the debut single by Rossendale psych-folk-dreampop trio that combine the vocal talents of Mary-Joanna Coogan and Megan Thomas with the guitar of Tim Page to create a wonderfully evocative first release.

Tuesday, 25 June 2019

Stereolab - Glasgow SWG3 - 22nd June 2019

We've been looking forward to the return of Stereolab for some time now. Back in 2009, they announced a hiatus; it was never a split. Tonight sees the first Glasgow show in a long time and it exceeded our expectations. Long term admirer Stuart Ralston heads home for the weekend and reports back.

Cabbage / Afghan Sand Gang / Thomas Haywood (The Blinders) - Manchester Night And Day - 24th June 2019

Three of the most exciting bands on the Manchester scene came together on a hot sweltering night to raise funds for the family of Liam Smith who passed away recently in Australia. Cabbage and Afghan Sand Gang both paid heartfelt tributes to their friend during the course of the night.