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For the release of her ‘Hard as Hello’ EP earlier this year, Kimberly Anne held a release party at London’s Social. Such was the demand from the hundreds stuck outside that she had to perform twice on the same night to ensure everyone went home happy. It’s the personal touch that makes Kimberly stand out, not only as a person, but in her music. Following the release of her ‘Liar’ EP last month, Kimberly spoke to TGTF about her latest release and her plans for the future.
It’s no secret that Kimberly had an unconventional way of getting into music, as she explained. “Originally, I wrote poetry and I performed it at poetry nights in South London. I was learning the keyboard at the same time, so I’d take my keyboard along, play some chords and sing a few repetitive lines in the middle. One day, someone sort of tapped me on the shoulder and was like: ‘Do you reckon that you’re just a singer-songwriter?’ I was like: ‘Oh, yeah.’ It wasn’t the most natural thing at the beginning because I thought I was just a poet and an actress, but I got into telling stories through music.”
Throughout her music, Kimberly Anne has had a DIY approach, using items and furniture that she found around the house as instruments: “At first, I didn’t have a drum kit and I couldn’t get my hands on one. In my initial demos, they were actually quite DIY, as I was recording with IKEA tables and stuff. What I found from going through that process was that I couldn’t replicate some of those sounds in the studio. They just didn’t sound the same, so we kept in some of the quirkiness. It got me excited, and it put me in a bit of an experimental sort of journey.”
“On one of my singles called ‘Hard as Hello’, we have a two second sample of a SEGA Megadrive Sonic game. On ‘Liar’, a lot of the drum fills are actually my drummer playing on an empty water cooler bottle. We like to have a bit of fun in the studio. I think that’s the way it should be.”
‘Liar’ is the lead single from the EP of the same name, which was released on the 22nd of August. Kimberly describes the EP as “a musical playground”. “I got the opportunity to work with some really cool producer”, she explains, “It was a good chance for me to explore where I wanted to take my music before putting the album out. It was a chance for me to show people a reflection of what the album’s going to sound like.”
One of the tracks on the EP, ‘Almost on My Feet’, was written and produced within 4 hours using a home demo set-up: “I don’t normally write like that, but it’s actually been really valuable. It taught me to just accept what happens in the moment and to not always try and achieve perfection.”
Speaking about her forthcoming debut album, which is set to be released in the first half of 2015, Kimberly said that she hopes “people feel like they’ve heard a girl’s honest story. I just want it to be a genuine record. I’m an acoustic pop artist with a dash of indie for good measure and I hope I successfully get across an album that is a little bit more adventurous. I want it to be more exciting than just a straight singer/songwriter, girl with her guitar record. That’s definitely not all that I am.”
Prior to the release of her album (apart from “learning how to cook”), Kimberly is releasing a number of collaboration tracks. While she is playing her cards close to her chest, she did reveal that she has teamed up with D/C, fellow South Londoner Dan Caplan who recently joined Kimberly on stage at her London headline show. “The whole point of the collaborations process was that I wanted to go work with people that I’ve just known about for the last couple of years and that I’ve really been feeling. I just want to get in a room with them and just make something. D/C is just brilliant and I think he’s going to do so well. I just had to be in a room with him. I wanted to see what we created.”
“The rest of the collabs are quite different, so they’re not all in that realm. D/C’s quite soul/electronic, but there’s a vast range of genres that are going to be involved.”
Many thanks to Kimberly Anne for chatting with us and to Danny for sorting this interview out for us. Kimberly Anne’s ‘Liar’ EP is out now on Polydor Records. Catch her on the Communion New Faces tour, which commences in November and also stars FYFE, Oxford pop quartet Pixel Fix and Nottingham five-piece Amber Run.
After spending 8 years establishing themselves in Dublin, Irish quartet the Coronas have recently uprooted and moved to London, where they were signed to Island Records for a new album due out early next year. Having already played epic dates at Dublin’s O2 and Olympia Theatre, the band are ready to move on to England and Scotland.
The four-piece will play three live shows next month, starting with a headline date at the The Soup Kitchen in Manchester on the 22nd of October. For a quick preview, check out an acoustic live video of Danny O’ Reilly and Dave McPhillips of the band performing ‘All the Others’ below the tour date listing. Tickets for the following shows are available now.
Previous coverage of the Coronas on TGTF is here.
Wednesday 22nd October 2014 – Manchester Soup Kitchen
Thursday 23rd October 2014 – Glasgow King Tut’s Wah Wah Hut
Tuesday 28th October 2014 – London Scala
By Mary Chang
on Sunday, 14th September 2014 at 10:00 am
Brother/sister Aussie folk duo Angus and Julia Stone have premiered their latest music video for ‘Grizzly Bear’, which appears on their third yet self-titled album out now. In the promo, scenes from their touring life are interspersed with lovely images of Australian forests and beaches for a truly enchanting visual. Watch it below.
The siblings will be touring the UK this December.
By Mary Chang
on Saturday, 13th September 2014 at 10:00 am
The 1975‘s newest video is for new single ‘Heart Out’. A preteen version of the band plays a school talent show, recalling Wolf Alice‘s ‘Moaning Lisa Smile’. See what I mean by watch the video below. Frontman Matt Healy describes what you’re watching as follows:
With the video for ‘Heart Out’ I wanted to return to the classic performance scene. I love a good performance video and wanted to try my hand at creating something that represented my grandeur and slightly deluded sense of self, whilst also adhering to the simplistic rules of a performance. The video is about narcissism, belief and delusion in equal measure. It represents how antiquated and romanticised visions of past and future shed a blazing light on the present and in turn provoke a self-analysis that soon shifts from the material to the ideological. It was in this state of excitement and obsession where the ‘Heart Out’ video was born. Obviously i can delve into the artistic vision of the video – what it means to me, the subtext and my own emotional investment within it – but in doing so I fear defacing what the video truly is about, at face value. It’s a bunch of kids who think they’re rockstars. And…they are x
In 2 weeks’ time, the 1975 are on tour in the UK.
By Mary Chang
on Friday, 12th September 2014 at 6:00 pm
A raucous favorite at festivals this summer, Slaves‘ song ‘Hey’ now has a promo. The video reminds us all how important it is to keep an eye on your drinks or strange things will happen. You have been warned. Watch the video below.
We gave away ‘Hey’ in this previous MP3 of the Day post. Catch them on tour supporting Jamie T in October and November; all the details are here.
Last week, Irish art rockers Bell X1 began part 2 of the touring cycle for ‘Chop Chop’, their fifth studio album that was released back in July 2013. When I caught up with frontman Paul Noonan via e-mail a few days ago, he was surprisingly frank about the album’s reception thus far. “To be honest we hoped it would have gotten to more ears by now. When we made the record we had such fire for it, and were aching to get it out there. We love playing so we’re glad to be out again, but we had hoped we’d get to visit a lot more places in the US this second time around.”
In my interview with him from last spring, Noonan talked about the “mentality shift” that went into the making of ‘Chop Chop’, particularly with regard to technical skill and playing the songs live. “We really wanted to do it quickly and mine a little more instinct and intuition and become better musicians.” He emphasised the live aspect of the band’s music as not just the end result, but an important part of the songwriting process. “Initially, actually, we wanted to make two short albums, and call one ‘Chop’ and the other ‘Chop’ and then have some kind of a way of connecting them that they would become ‘Chop Chop’. The time from making a record to it actually getting out is often frustratingly long, and often you spend 6 months or so sitting on a record you’ve made and are burning to get out and play and to bring to people. And so we wanted to make a record and put it out very quickly and then tour that, and then (repeat the cycle)”.
While events didn’t work out exactly according to that plan, circumstances did conspire to highlight a few other dualities surrounding Bell X1 relative to ‘Chop Chop’. The band spent the remainder of last year on the first part of the album’s tour cycle, including the October 2013 live date reviewed here. They then took a brief hiatus, which saw two of the band members working on side projects. Noonan introduced his treble-oriented duet project Printer Clips, which realised the idea of combining two component parts into a single unit. Meanwhile, multi-instrumentalist David Geraghty continued his understated solo work under the new title Join Me in the Pines. Noonan puts the side projects into perspective, saying that they fit comfortably into Bell X1’s current touring schedule. “Musicians and writers have a lot of time to make stuff, or to avoid making it, or to dream up new ideas for one day making stuff. And sometimes the stuff gets made. I suppose the band has become a hub from which lots of other projects have sprung over the years, and long may it continue. Sometimes there’s a clearing of the head required alright, when it comes time to work on new material as a band.”
After a busy start to 2014 with activity from both side projects, this summer saw Bell X1 reunite for a handful of festival dates in Ireland before they embarked on their first-ever tour of Australia in July. Of the antipodean experience, Noonan says, “It’s a hell of a long way down. We’ve been wanting to go for a while, so it was great to finally get there, and for people to show up to the gigs phew! It was a mad, spacey dash around the country in a week.”
Bell X1 began the North American leg of their autumn tour this past Tuesday in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Noonan hints that the set lists for these shows might be less focused on the recent ‘Chop Chop’. “We’ve added a few songs from other records to the pack this time out, it’s been good to get them together. We’ve been juggling various ideas for the set, trying something new every night so far.” Their opening act for the tour is Los Angeles singer/songwriter Gabriel Kahane. If Bell X1’s past support acts, which have included Lyla Foy and Duke Special, are any indication, Kahane should prove to be another undiscovered musical treasure. A full list of North American tour dates can be found on Bell X1’s official Web site.
Looking beyond the completion of their North American dates, Noonan says, “There’s some moonlighting to be done when we get home with the solo/side projects, some shows in Ireland. We’ve been offered some shows in the Middle East in December, so I’m hoping that will happen.” He is also cryptically optimistic about the potential new Bell X1 music in the near future. “We’ve been working on new songs over the summer. It’s been great to feel that thrill of jumping on that train again, glimpses of where the songs might go and what rags they may wear.”
Thanks to Paul Noonan for taking time to answer my questions, and to Foye for facilitating the e-mail exchange.
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