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And so we come to the number one spot on TGTF’s run-down of the acts to watch for 2014. And the winner of that coveted honour is… Findlay, the dirty-rock outfit fronted by the eponymous Natalie. Their 2013 was momentous, from a raucous set at Liverpool Sound City (photos here, Sound City coverage here), being picked by fashion designer L’Wren Scott (Mick Jagger’s better half) to play the prestigious Serpentine Ball in front of the great and the good of the fashion world, to finishing the year with their very first headline UK tour, the trajectory has been steadily upwards. And even though Findlay is the name of the band, it’s really their lead singer who gets all the attention, and with good reason: it’s her sassy, grungy, sexy delivery that give Findlay their appeal, both live and on record.
2012′s début single ‘Your Sister’ really does start as they mean to go on. Unashamedly pilfering a T-Rex riff, Findlay smoulders and growls something about kissing, through a distorted, reverbed microphone, before things reach such a pitch that all she can manage are a few primordial groans. Well done her. If anything, its follow-up ‘Off & On’ turns every knob a bit further towards 11. There’s a little less smoulder, but a lot more urgency and an almost cod-horror feel to the vestigial chorus – the soundtrack to a zombie car-chase. It’s over before it’s even begun, a crazy, sub-three-minute vignette of vamp-rock.
For latest single ‘Greasy Love’ production duties are taken on by legendary rock producer Flood – a sure sign, if any were needed, that Findlay are mixing it in the big time now. The results are clear to hear – if anything, the drama is brought to even more dizzying heights. The vocal is distorted almost beyond recognition, and the narrative abstraction is on another level – undoubtedly she’s talking about something very naughty indeed, over a swampy guitar groove and thudding drums. The result is neatly summarised by the visual tone of the accompanying video – tinted blood-red, Findlay stalks through a desolate urban landscape, caterwauling about all manner of behind-closed-doors shenanigans.
The involvement of Flood is even more significant when one considers the body of work he’s produced with PJ Harvey, perhaps something of an influence on the nascent Findlay. One could also mention as influences well-known punky females such as Patti Smith and Courtney Love. Findlay isn’t quite a Riot Grrrl yet, though – there’s little in the way of strident feminism, although there may be a glimmer hidden under the abstraction, and her stage persona is, frankly, a little more raunchy than the Grrrls of old would condone – but perhaps that makes her all the more balanced a performer. Either way, there’s plenty of star quality to Natalie Findlay, and there’s no doubt at all that 2014 should be the year she makes the jump into the mainstream consciousness. Greasy or not.
Synth pop duo Goldfrapp have announced a new list of UK shows hot on the heels of their sold out European tour. In addition to the band’s latest release, ‘Tales of Us’, singer Alison Goldfrapp has recently curated her first art exhibition at The Lowry gallery in Salford, which will run through March 2014.
Tickets for the following tour dates go on sale today (Friday the 13th of December) at 10 AM.
Wednesday 26th March 2014 – Birmingham Symphony Hall
Thursday 27th March 2014 – Manchester Lowry
Saturday 29th March 2014 – Brighton Dome
Sunday 30th March 2014 – Portsmouth Guildhall
Tuesday 1st April 2014 – Bristol Colston Hall
Wednesday 2nd April 2014 – Reading Hexagon
Friday 4th April 2014 – Glasgow Royal Concert Hall
Saturday 5th April 2014 – York Barbican
Monday 7th April 2014 – Gateshead Sage
By Mary Chang
on Thursday, 12th December 2013 at 6:00 pm
Try as you might, you can’t escape from Arcade Fire, can you? Continuing their media onslaught is the latest promo video for ‘Afterlife’, a nearly 8-minute long mini-film that does not feature the band themselves. I’ll be honest, the song is getting overplayed on 6music, so I’m sick of the song, but if you’re not sick of it yet, watch the video below.
By Mary Chang
on Thursday, 12th December 2013 at 4:00 pm
At this stage in his career, there’s probably no grander stage for elder statesman of alt-rock Morrissey to perform on than at the Nobel Peace Prize concert in Oslo, Norway. This all went down last night, and he didn’t disappoint, performing his much talked about cover of the late Lou Reed’s ‘Satellite of Love’, in addition to newer song ‘People Are the Same Everywhere’ and 2004 ‘You Are the Quarry’ vitriolic stomper ‘Irish Blood, English Heart’. Watch the performance below.
Just after playing three homecoming shows in Liverpool over the weekend, Miles Kane has announced that he and his band will be playing a string of fifteen dates next spring across the UK and Ireland. In addition, Kane will be supporting Arctic Monkeys at two massive shows at London Finsbury Park in May 2014. Tickets for Kane’s headline tour go on general sale this Friday the 13th of December at 10 AM.
Friday 14th March 2014 – Wolverhampton Wulfrun Hall
Saturday 15th March 2014 – Blackpool Arena Winter Gardens
Monday 17th March 2014 – Warrington Parr Hall
Tuesday 18th March 2014 – Buckley Trivoli
Wednesday 19th March 2014 – York Barbican
Friday 21st March 2014 – Edinburgh Picture House
Saturday 22nd March 2014 – Lincoln Engine Shed
Sunday 23rd March 2014 – Coventry Kasbah
Tuesday 25th March 2014 – Cardiff Uni Solus
Sunday 26th March 2014 – Brighton Concorde 2
Friday 28th March 2014 – Leicester Academy 1
Saturday 29th March 2014 – Liverpool Olympia
Sunday 30th March 2014 – Cambridge Junction
Wednesday 2nd April 2014 – Belfast Limelight
Thursday 3rd April 2014 – Dublin Academy
Friday 23rd May 2014 – London Finsbury Park (supporting Arctic Monkeys)
Saturday 24th May 2014 – London Finsbury Park (supporting Arctic Monkeys)
By Mary Chang
on Thursday, 12th December 2013 at 1:00 pm
#7 on this year’s TGTF 10 for 2014 reader’s poll was young band from Cheltenham Young Kato. Yesterday, we posted this q&a I did with lead singer and master of hair Tommy Wright. Today, we’ve got his answers to the TGTF Quickfire Questions. Ah yes, we take a stroll down memory lane with Tommy, back to the days of early Busted, as well as a sob-filled scene in 1998. I’ve gotten you hooked, haven’t I? Read on…
What song is your earliest musical memory?
I have a ridiculous memory and can still remember myself at about 4-year old playing a toy guitar in front of the whole class. I didn’t play any actual chords, I just strummed along and sung ‘In the Summertime’ by I think Mungo Jerry? Weird child, I know… [Not at all, Tommy. If you're going to remember a song, make it a classic - Ed.]
What was your favourite song as a child?
As I’ve grown up my musical taste has changed dramatically so can’t really say what my favourite song was, but I know I was at the perfect age when Busted released their debut album, haha!
What song makes you laugh?
Colt 45 – ‘Afroman’
What song makes you cry?
Aqua – ‘Turn Back Time’. I vividly remember the video montage after England got knocked out of the ’98 World Cup – I cried my eyes out.
What song reminds you of the first time you fell in love? (It’s up to you if you want this to be sweet, naughty, etc.)
There are at least 2 songs on our album that I’ve written specifically with my girlfriend in mind. We’ve been together for nearly 3 years and she’s been at pretty much every gig, in front of nine people and 9,000.
What song makes you think of being upset / angry? (Example: maybe you heard it when you were angry with someone and it’s still with you, and/or something that calms you down when you’re upset, etc.)
Most likely the one in the previous answer if it all goes wrong. I’m confident it won’t, though.
Which song (any song written in the last century) do you wish you’d written yourself?
‘Imagine’ – John Lennon.
Who is your favourite writer? (This can be a songwriter or ANY kind of writer.)
I’d have to go with Morrissey and Marr as a combination.
If you hadn’t become a singer/musician/songwriter/etc., what job do you think you’d be doing right now?
In 2011, I had my place booked at university, I even had my accommodation. I was off to study Film and Television and had a real passion for it. However after a week at Reading Festival, I knew I had to take at least one year out to pursue music.
If God said you were allowed to bring only one album with you to Heaven, which would it be and why? (Sorry, but double albums do not count.)
U2 – ‘The Joshua Tree’ because it is my favorite album of all time.
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