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Header photo by Shervin Lainez
Australian singer/songwriter and recent Transgressive Records signee Julia Jacklin has announced a list of UK headline dates for early next year in support of her debut album ‘Don’t Let the Kids Win’. The LP was released back in October, and its title track is due to be released as a single on the 12th of December. Jacklin’s last-minute performance of ‘Don’t Let the Kids Win’ at the British Music Embassy on the Saturday night of SXSW 2016 tugged at my heart and brought tears to my eyes. Have a handkerchief ready when you watch her new video for the track, which is featured below the tour date listing.
Jacklin is currently on tour in the UK opening for Chicago-based duo Whitney, who we also caught at SXSW 2016. A full listing of Jacklin’s upcoming shows, which include dates in Europe and Australia, can be found on her official Facebook. TGTF’s previous coverage of Julia Jacklin is collected here.
Wednesday 22nd February 2017 – Brighton Green Door Store
Thursday 23rd February 2017 – Manchester Soup Kitchen
Friday 24th February 2017 – Nottingham Bodega
Monday 27th February 2017 – Glasgow King Tut’s
Tuesday 28th February 2017 – Leeds Headrow House
Wednesday 1st March 2017 – Bristol Louisiana
Thursday 2nd March 2017 – London Scala
By Mary Chang
on Friday, 4th November 2016 at 6:00 pm
Get ready, hipsters: Grandaddy are back! After their breakup in 2006, their frontman Jason Lytle wasted no time in moving to Montana and happily making two solo albums. Following a further uprooting to Portland, he eventually found his way back to Modesto, California, where he felt he was in a place to write songs for a new Grandaddy album.
The fruits of his and his now reunited bandmates’ labour will be contained in ‘Last Place’, their first album in a decade, which is expected to be released on the 3rd of March 2017 on 30th Century Records. And for long-time fans in the UK, you’ll be happy about this development: they’ve announced a series of live dates in blighty in March and April (more details here). But hey! This is a Video of the Moment post, right? Check out early single ‘Way We Won’t’, a prime cut from the forthcoming album, in the video below. The song is understated in that uniquely West Coast way, but solid proof that Grandaddy are going to kill it when March comes round next year. Stay tuned.
By Mary Chang
on Friday, 4th November 2016 at 12:00 pm
It’s a month now since I last touched down at Dublin Airport, and I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about my trip. America may be a proud nation, but its pride is nothing compared to Ireland’s. Think about the number of times they’ve been invaded and been under someone else’s thumb. And yet they’ve still managed to come out on the other side, holding steadfast to their culture and traditions. How did this happen? Plenty of stewards dedicated to preserving their way of life, the history, even the landscape. You might think that those folk are now few in number and dwindling, aged, but in fact, there are plenty of young people ready to take on the baton and continue their hard work. Daithi, from County Clare in the West of Ireland and staunchly proud of where he is from, is one of them. And he’s decided to go about this in his own unique way through music.
I was lucky enough to be invited along for an outdoor sound-mining expedition the Irish singer/songwriter/producer undertook on a typical autumn day in Ireland. That is, driving past a major sheep farmers’ auction and through windy gales and at times lashing rain, making for a somewhat treacherous but altogether highly memorable experience I will never forget. Along the now famously named Wild Atlantic Way up and down the west coast of Ireland – arguably Ireland’s greatest advertising campaign yet to introduce the world to the splendour of their little, green island – Daithi was eager to collect the sounds of the land he loves. The surf, the pooling and running of water, the wind: these are the evidence of nature’s beautiful fury he committed to tape.
As I mentioned in my review of his Canadian Music Week 2016 show in May at the Rivoli, it is a stretch initially to consider in your mind mixing electronic beats with a fiddle. However, Daithi does it with such finesse, and the same finesse can describe what he’s doing with these recordings so lovingly collected in the field. He is releasing a new EP next March, ‘Holiday Home’, and he’s decided to preview the EP with a single. ‘Falling For You’ was recorded in various cottages in the West Country he rented, so there’s a literal connection between this song and the name of the EP. By living alone and away from most direct everything else, the experience allowed him full immersion into and be inspired directly by his environment.
On vocals is his longtime collaborator Sinead White, whose voice can be heard on the exemplary ‘Love’s on Top’ and ‘April’. This summer, she appeared with him at Irish festivals, and judging from the rapturous response from audiences, theirs is a match made in heaven. Her vocals, which complement the at times grand, at times bouncy instrumentation, were recorded on Valentia Island, off the coast of County Kerry in the southwest part of Ireland. If you’ve read any Greek mythology, you will feel like she’s on a craggy rock off the coast, emoting her siren song out to sea. Sounds from the ocean at Inch Beach in Cork and the gentle tones of a chime that he happened to come across in one of his rented houses on Achill Island in County Mayo are truly distinctive touches he’s placed on this track. Electronic producers are notoriously known for their attention to detail, and Daithi is no exception. Instead of hitting you over the head with these samples, they’ve been layered on to add to and heighten the mood.
The overall effect of ‘Falling For You’ is awe-inspiring, and its accompanying video by Feel Good Lost shows the many faces of Western Ireland. The song sounds nothing like you’ve heard before. While most dance floor bangers have the intention of transporting you to a night out during which you may or may not have made some questionable life decisions, this one’s different. The raw beauty of his homeland, put together with the emotional beauty of elicited from a thing called love, makes for a very special track you won’t soon forget.
‘Falling For You’ featuring Sinead White, Daithi’s newest single, is out now. It’s the lead single on his ‘Holiday Home’ EP, which is due out in March 2017. For more of my coverage on Daithi on TGTF, follow this link.
October got off to a bit of a slow start here at TGTF, with editor Mary running off to Ireland for the first week of the month to cover Hard Working Class Heroes 2016. But her absence proved to be productive, as Mary brought back with her a veritable treasure trove of new music, from artists like Tiz McNamara, Saramai and Callum Stewart among many, many others.
In other October news, we featured final goodbyes from two bands on the verge of calling it a day—New York alt-rock trio Augustines and Oxford folk pop quartet Stornoway. We debuted excellent independent music from Sheffield’s Tom Baxendale and showcased new tunes from established artists like KT Tunstall and Pete Doherty. And we continued our ongoing coverage of several artists from SXSW 2016, including Holly Macve and Barns Courtney.
If you like our monthly playlists and want to subscribe to the TGTF Spotify account, you can plug “spotify:user:tgtftunes” (no quotes) into the search bar and hit the Follow button. Enjoy!
By Mary Chang
on Thursday, 3rd November 2016 at 6:00 pm
‘Lullaby’, the name of Frank Carter & the Rattlesnakes‘ most recently unveiled track, doesn’t make a whole lot of sense, given the kind of music they make. Err, the ear-splitting, hard rock variety. And thankfully, they’ve stayed true to their ethos with the new single. You won’t be sleeping to this ditty anytime soon. Watch its accompanying music video, directed by Frank Carter himself, below. ‘Modern Ruin’, the new album from the band, is scheduled for release on the 27th of January 2017. Catch up on our Steven’s interview with the man at LeeFest 2016 through this link. For even more on Frank Carter & the Rattlesnakes on TGTF, use this link.
If you missed part 1 of our interview with Sheffield singer/songwriter Tom Baxendale about his debut solo album ‘In the City a Short Time Ago’, you can catch up on it right back here.
Though the album was recorded in fairly short order, the individual songs on ‘In the City a Short Time Ago’ evolved over a much longer period of time. “Some of them are really new, or were at the time they were recorded, and some of them are really old.” Rather sheepishly, Baxendale admits, “I’ve just got millions and billions of songs that I need to record that are kind of stockpiled. I used to write songs in bunches, like with an album in mind, and I’d have them sort of lined up. At any given time I’ve got about six of those. But this [album is] the first time I’ve ever just kind of ignored that mindset and picked songs across the different kind of ideas that I’ve got. I picked them [based on] how they were going to work together, so there are kind of themes [on this album].”
The album’s first electric guitar-based single ‘All My Nightmares’ is one of those older tracks that began its life with Baxendale’s old London-based band, the Rainy Day Club. “[We had] a double bass player, and a ukulele player, and a fiddle player and I was playing acoustic. You can imagine that that’s quite a different sound.” But ‘In the City a Short Time Ago’ has its folkier moments as well, including the simple-yet-heartfelt ballad ‘All I Ask’, which surely carries over some influence from Baxendale’s earlier venture.
Recording the songs alone, part-by-part, presented a unique challenge for Baxendale, but playing them live turned out to be somewhat easier. Baxendale performed an album launch show in Sheffield on the 30th of September, with his friends from The Payroll Union stepping into the role of his backing band. “We’re so used to playing with each other, [and] I think everyone’s enjoying it. It’s quite a fun way round of doing things, actually, that the music already exists. It’s not like they’re just learning it and playing it exactly as I did, but they’ve got those kind of reference points to get their head round what the song is meant to be, do you know what I mean? Whereas with Payroll, we always develop that together and spend a lot of time doing that. This is a completely different process.”
Baxendale has lined up a handful of local gigs in Sheffield to support ‘In the City a Short Time Ago’, but he hasn’t yet made plans to play shows any farther from home. “I’d quite like to, I’ve kind of half-heartedly put some feelers out, but not really got anywhere.” He cites the difficulty of being away from his family and his graphic design job as the main obstacle. “Say like, just a week-long tour, you have to sort of cash in all your brownie points to go away for a week. It’s got to be worth it, there’s got to be a reason to do it. It’s not like [we] can go and do these really cool, high-profile gigs, because we’re not a high-profile band, outside Sheffield. Or even in Sheffield, but definitely not outside Sheffield. We just kind of thought, “what’s the point?” Which is really defeatist, but I don’t know.”
Beyond the few gigs scheduled for this autumn, Baxendale looks forward to more solo recording. “I’m really, really dying to start recording again, and I actually might be buying better equipment. I’ve been investing in some cool things, like, to make my recording sound better and be easier and more fun. I’m really dying to start using all this nice, fancy, expensive equipment that I’ve bought and seeing whether I can actually make it sound good. I think I’ll do it on my own again, just because I really like that process. DIY writing is really cool. I mean, I would be quite happy if like a big record label came and gave me loads of money to make music, but that doesn’t really happen, because of the state of the music industry or whatever. But the flip side of that is, you can actually do all this stuff on your own, you can make a half decent album in your own house, and put it out for very little cost, which you wouldn’t have been able to do in the ’60s or ’70s or whatever, so you might as well make the most of it.”
Tom Baxendale’s decidedly better than “half-decent” album ‘In the City a Short Time Ago’ is available on Spotify, iTunes, and on his Bandcamp page. If you missed our earlier coverage of ‘In the City a Short Time Ago’, you can read it right back here.
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