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By Mary Chang
on Thursday, 22nd January 2015 at 11:00 am
It’s been a great running tradition that the BBC has hosted a night at massive band showcasing festival South by Southwest, and in just under 55 days, the Beeb will be making waves with yet another esteemed appearance in Austin! Taking place on the evening of Wednesday, the 18th of March, at the home of the British Music Embassy for the week, Latitude 30 on San Jacinto Boulevard, the event will no doubt give unprecedented attention to the acts chosen to perform on the night, and we here at TGTF are really pleased we’ll be in Austin for the festivities.
Last night on his evening drivetime programme on 6music, Steve Lamacq welcomed his fellow BBC presenter Huw Stephens to announce the line-up for the BBC Introducing night at SXSW 2015, partnering this year with PRS for Music Foundation, who gives their never wavering support to up and coming UK artists and their developing careers. Who will Lammo and Huw be bringing with them to the big dance in Austin in March? Here’s a rundown, in alphabetical order:
Blossoms – Stockport has the distinction of being the birthplace of Delphic and Dutch Uncles (both via Marple). But in 2015, all eyes will be back on the Greater Manchester town and five-piece Blossoms, putting on the psychedelic mantle that became cool again after the success of Temples last year. Will they surpass the Kettering group’s success in Austin in 2014? We’ll have to wait and see. One thing’s for sure, their name should not lead you to assume they’re fragile Northern flowers: check out the swaggery cool of ‘Blow’.
Gengahr – there always seems to be contention on who will be the next great British guitar band. On the current list of hopefuls, London’s Gengahr certainly have their supporters. They aren’t the hit-you-over-the-head loud kind of obvious guitar band, preferring more thoughtful vocals and well thought out melodies that might bleed over to pop territory. Except they’re quite masterful on guitar: have a listen to ‘Powder’.
Jack Garratt – in case you were concerned that the epic British beard would not be covered at this year’s SXSW, have a look at Jack Garratt think again. But that’s beside the point. What’s far more important are Garratt’s piano playing and deep, soulful voice. One wonders if the Austin event could be his jumping off platform to superstardom as it was last year to Ireland’s Hozier.
Little Simz – it’s probably not a wise thing to ignore Islington’s Simbi Ajikawo. The rapper, who goes by the moniker Little Simz, had her debut EP ‘E.D.G.E’ exclusively premiered on Billboard last summer and has already been noticed by Jay-Z and his crew for her experimental style of rap. And just in case the music thing doesn’t work out, she has acting to fall back on as a vocation: you may remember Ajikawo as the character Meleka in a few episodes of E4’s Youngers.
SOAK – we’re not entirely sure why Derry teenager Bridie Monds-Watson goes by the stage name of SOAK. Her highly acclaimed EP in 2013 was titled ‘Sea Creatures’, so maybe she feels some kind of affinity to the sea and water? What we do know for sure: she’s got an achingly sweet voice, she recently signed to Rough Trade and her debut album for them is expected later this year. Stay tuned for more news on her in the coming months.
Spring King – with a new promo video just uploaded to their YouTube channel 2 days before Huw Stephens’ big announcement, something tells you Manchester garage rockers Spring King are just raring to go to Austin. The aforementioned promo, for the song ‘Not Me, Not Now’, was filmed when the band were in New York City last October for the other biggie American emerging music festival CMJ. Will the prior experience playing for American audiences help them in Austin? We shall see.
To read the official announcement from BBC Introducing, go here.
We here at TGTF will be bringing you even more preview coverage of SXSW 2015 in the coming weeks leading up to the big week in Austin in March. To catch up on any of our past reporting or if you want to keep an eye on our coverage as it continues, head this way.
Tyneside folk duo The Unthanks will set off on a lengthy tour of the UK and Ireland next month in support of their forthcoming album ‘Mount the Air’. The self-released album was recorded over 2 years’ time in Northumberland and is the first new recorded material from The Unthanks in 4 years. Sisters Rachel and Becky Unthank will scaffold their formidable vocal talents on this tour with a full 10-piece instrumental ensemble. Tickets for the following shows are available now.
On Monday, TGTF posted the Unthanks‘ new video for single ‘Flutter'; watch it here.
Saturday 21st February 2015 – Southampton Turner Sims
Sunday 22nd February 2015 – Exeter Corn Exchange
Tuesday 24th February 2015 – Yeovil Octagon Theatre
Wednesday 25th February 2015 – Bristol Colston Hall
Thursday 26th February 2015 – Cardiff St. George’s Hall
Friday 27th February 2015 – Nottingham Albert Hall
Saturday 28th February 2015 – Sheffield City Hall
Sunday 1st March 2015 – Liverpool Philharmonic Hall
Tuesday 3rd March 2015 – Bury St. Edmunds Apex
Wednesday 4th March 2015 – Brighton Dome
Thursday 5th March 2015 – Ashford Revelation St Mary’s
Friday 6th March 2015 – Norwich Open
Saturday 7th March 2015 – London Roundhouse
Sunday 8th March 2015 – Warwick Arts Centre
Tuesday 10th March 2015 – Leeds Irish Centre
Wednesday 11th March 2015 – Manchester Ritz
Thursday 12th March 2015 – Dublin National Concert Hall
Friday 13th March 2015 – Belfast Empire
Saturday 14th March 2015 – Newcastle City Hall
Thursday 19th March 2015 – Middlesbrough Town Hall
Friday 20th March 2015 – Edinburgh Queens Hall
The Vaccines have announced a tour of the UK to go along with the release of a new single from their forthcoming third album. The new track, titled ‘Handsome’, was recorded with Dave Fridmann (Flaming Lips, Tame Impala, MGMT) at his Tarbox Road Studio in upstate New York and features Fridmann’s reinterpretation of the the track ‘Handsome Reimagined’ as its b-side. You can watch the video for ‘Handsome’ below the tour date listing, before the single’s official release on the 9th of March. The intimate regional shows scheduled for this spring comprise The Vaccines’ first UK tour since they played a run of arena dates in May 2013. Tickets for the following shows go on sale tomorrow, Friday the 23rd of January, at 10 AM.
Previous TGTF coverage of The Vaccines can be found here.
Friday 27th March 2015 – Nottingham Rock City
Saturday 28th March 2015 – Hartlepool Borough Hall
Sunday 29th March 2015 – Glasgow Old Fruit Market
Tuesday 31st March 2015 – Scunthorpe Baths Hall
Wednesday 1st April 2015 – Manchester Albert Hall
Friday 3rd April 2015 – Portsmouth Pyramids
Saturday 4th April 2015 – Bath Pavilion
Sunday 5th April 2015 – Folkestone Leas Cliff Hall
Wednesday 8th April 2015 – London Brixton Electric
By Mary Chang
on Wednesday, 21st January 2015 at 6:00 pm
Halifax band The Orielles have a new video for their single ‘Space Doubt’, out this week. With plenty of sunnies and backward baseball caps, it’s got a summery feel that is just perfect to lift you out of the winter doldrums. (I’m writing this just as it’s snowing outside TGTF Towers…again…groan…) Word on the street is the single will be released on vinyl, so hang tight for that if you’re a collector. For now, enjoy the promo below.
By Mary Chang
on Wednesday, 21st January 2015 at 1:00 pm
Words by Harry Gold
he garage rock moniker usually carries connotations of abrasive and energetic guitars, steeped in fuzz to an immeasurable degree. However, in the case of Virginia’s The Young Sinclairs, the genre is given a new meaning entirely, with their interpretation of it seems to be largely different from other bands classified as such, offering a cleaner, more vintage sound, leaning less towards punk rock and intertwining themselves with the garage rock’s predecessor of rock ‘n’ roll. Describing themselves as “far more than just a fleeting retro act” on their Facebook, it’s clear that the band are filled with the confidence and conviction, and indeed, justifiably so. Taken from their recently released, self-produced LP ‘This is the Young Sinclairs’, the opposing sides of the band’s latest single both offer a welcome complement to each other, drawing out different musical ideas from the group’s evidently sizeable list of influences.
Single ‘Dead End Street’ ambles into view with jangly guitars that would not have been out of place had they appeared alongside The Velvet Underground’s softer, more conventional songwriting moments. The brilliantly haphazard piano sound manages to seem simultaneously both childlike and endearingly antique, characterizing the track with a late ‘60s psychedelic atmosphere, cohesively coupled with a jangly C86 indie twist.
With vocalist Samuel J. Lunsford sounding like a stoned Paul McCartney fumbling his way through a Byrds classic, the flip-side of the double A-sided single ‘Mona Lisa’ is equally as impressive. More Beatles comparisons arise in the artful harmonies of the backing vocals throughout the track, the overall effect being that the whole song feels like a genuine unheard relic that has not been newly recorded, merely recently unearthed. The band’s refusal to submit to the conventional way of recording, making the decision to record and produce all their music independently, flitting between various indie labels, distances their work from modern influence and corruption.
The double A-sided single ‘Dead End Street / Mona Lisa’ from American band The Young Sinclairs is out now on Ample Play Records. You can listen to both songs below.
Brianna Price, who is better known by her stage name B.Traits, is a DJ, record producer and radio presenter from Nelson, British Columbia, Canada.
At 18 years old, B.Traits made a name for herself at drum & bass club nights across Canada, having been taught to DJ by a friend. This led to regular bookings throughout North American and Europe. During her travels, she met Shy FX (best known for his re-edit of DJ Fresh’s ‘Gold Dust’), who signed B.Traits to his Digital Soundboy label in 2007, making her the first female artist on his roster.
Nevertheless, we had to wait 5 years for the release of the Canadian’s debut single ‘Fever’, which featured vocals from Elisabeth Troy, who recently featured on Clean Bandit’s cover of the house classic ‘Show Me Love’. ‘Fever’ charted at #36 in the Official UK Charts to give B.Traits her first top 40 UK single.
In April 2012, B.Traits hosted the “In New DJs We Trust” show on BBC Radio 1, appearing as part of a 4-week rotation. She later secured her own weekly slot as part of the Friday night line-up, broadcasting underground dance music to wee hour ravers from 1 to 4 AM. Her work for the radio station was recognised when the 28-year-old Canadian was nominated for Best DJ at the 2014 Bass Music Awards.
Most recently, B.Traits turned her efforts to television presenting, as she fronted a BBC Three documentary entitled “How Safe Are My Drugs?” The programme, which was broadcast in December 2014, explored the reasons why drug-related deaths in the UK had suddenly increased, and how much of that was down to the rapid growth of legal highs.
Looking ahead to later this year, B.Traits has more singles and a debut album in the pipeline. She is also appearing at a number of music festivals throughout the year, including SXSW 2015 in Austin.
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