Irish brothers Harry and Alfie Hudson-Taylor, better known simply as Hudson Taylor, will follow their September 2014 tour in support of Jake Bugg with their own headline tour of the UK and Ireland in early 2015.
The 21-date Singing for Strangers Tour will include shows at Shepherds Bush Empire in London and the Olympia Theater in Dublin. Tickets go on general sale today, the 3rd of October. Below the tour date listing, check out a live performance of Hudson Taylor’s upcoming single ‘Chasing Rubies’, due for release on the 19th of October.
Sunday 1st February 2015 – Edinburgh Caves
Tuesday 3rd February 2015 – Newcastle Riverside
Wednesday 4th February 2015 – Leeds Brudenell Social Club
Thursday 5th February 2015 – Sheffield Plug
Saturday 7th February 2015 – Manchester Academy 2
Sunday 8th February 2015 – Birmingham Library
Monday 9th February 2015 – Nottingham Rescue Rooms
Tuesday 10th February 2015 – Cambridge Junction 2
Thursday 12th February 2015 – London Shepherds Bush Empire
Friday 13th February 2015 – Brighton Concorde 2
Sunday 15th February 2015 – Oxford Academy 2
Monday 16th February 2015 – Falmouth Princess Pavilion
Wednesday 18th February 2015 – Exeter Phoenix
Thursday 19th February 2015 – Bristol Trinity Centre
Friday 20th February 2015 – Liverpool Academy 2
Saturday 21st February 2015 – Belfast Mandela Hall
Monday 23rd February 2015 – Galway Roisin Dubh
Tuesday 24th February 2015 – Dundalk Spirit Store
Thursday 26th February 2015 – Dublin Olympia Theatre
Saturday 28th February 2015 – Limerick Dolans
Sunday 1st March 2015 – Cork Savoy
By Mary Chang
on Thursday, 2nd October 2014 at 6:00 pm
In ‘Montreal Rock Band Somewhere’, Happyness show their more introspective, slower side in a drone-y, ’90s easy listening grunge style. The promo, which features a pulsating black light image of Jesus, seems to fit with the London band’s sound in this song perfectly. Watch the video below.
By Mary Chang
on Thursday, 2nd October 2014 at 4:00 pm
I think it’s safe to say that being Zane Lowe is a pretty cool thing. The list of brilliant things that only Lowe has gotten to experience just keeps growing, including this appearance by Josh Homme on the MTV programme Lowe hosts called Soundchain. The Queens of the Stone Age frontman played an acoustic version of ‘Long Slow Goodbye’, appearing on the QOTSA 2005 album ‘Lullabies to Paralyze’, just for him. Watch the performance below.
While Arctic Monkeys are busy both seducing and being seduced by America, and psychedelia is experiencing a powerful revival, the mainstream British guitar band format is arguably languishing (the efforts of a ragtag bunch of Britpop has-beens aside). Step forward Catfish and the Bottlemen, a vaguely Welsh group who specialise in big, guitar-y choruses and the occasional swear word. Considering they’ve been together for years, plugging away with local gigs whilst subsisting on nothing but dole money and dreams of stardom, the past few months must represent an unparalleled whirlwind of activity for Catfish and the Bottlemen. It all comes to a head with the release of their début album, ‘The Balcony.’
The last year or so has seen them release no less than six singles, first on the Communion label and then on Island records, which means ‘The Balcony’ is less album, more greatest hits collection of the band’s short career so far. Album tracks are outnumbered by single releases, which means it takes until track six before a previously unheard song makes an appearance. ‘Homesick’, ‘Kathleen’, ‘Cocoon’, ‘Pacifier’, ‘Rango’ and ‘Fallout’ will already be known to keen Catfish followers, and to this reviewer’s ears ‘Sidewinder’ sounds familiar, too. So the question is, by collecting their singles together and throwing in some B-sides, does ‘The Balcony’ add up to a more coherent release than the singles taken alone?
Sadly, not quite. Despite how appealing the occasional guilty pleasure of 3 minutes of chewy pop-rock is, trying to digest 11 such morsels in one sitting serves to highlight the genre’s inherent one-note dynamic. It’s a single paradigm – crunchy guitars, classically gritty British frontman vocals, big drums, loads of lead guitar flying over the top – and every song bar one is constructed from the same ingredients. Which is not to say there aren’t individual exciting moments here – McCann does have a genuine talent for delivering a hook-laden lead vocal, as heard particularly on ‘Kathleen’, and an everyman way with lyrics, generally concerning slightly tawdry, drunken liasons with the fairer sex (on ‘Cocoon’ and ‘Business’, for example), enlivened by the liberal use of F-bombs.
After the singles have come and gone, the mid-album ‘Hourglass’ starts acoustically, showcasing McCann’s ability to deliver a folky vocal style, his chugging rhythm guitar style, and fondness for swearing, and contributes a welcome, if modest, respite from the previous five songs’ walls of overdriven electric guitars. But after that it’s literally ‘Business’ as usual, as the overdrive pedals get stomped on, with five more big-hitters to come before the end. Subtle it’s not; effective – at least in the sense of getting people excited and jumping around – it certainly is.
None of these songs are likely to change anyone’s life or appear in a Desert Island Discs top 10. But what they do have the power to do is put a big, fat grin on one’s face for half an hour or so, particularly if they’re played loud and accompanied by a paper cup of slopping lager. Unlike sniffy, jaded reviewers, subtlety and complexity are clearly unimportant to a big chunk of the record-buying public. Big riffs and infectious enthusiasm go a long way, and with their first post-album tour sold out across the country (a tribute to the boisterous and powerful Catfish live show, the energy of which isn’t quite captured here), there’s no doubt that Catfish and the Bottlemen are one of the big cheeses of British guitar music right now. All they need to prove it is an offshore bank account.
‘The Balcony’, Catfish and the Bottlemen‘s debut album on Communion / Island Records, is available now. They are on tour in October and November 2014, as well as in March and April 2015 as recently announced.
By Mary Chang
on Thursday, 2nd October 2014 at 9:00 am
Maximo Park’s Paul Smith and Field Music’s Peter Brewis have joined forces on a new collaboration, which has yielded a brand new album. ‘Frozen by Sight’ will see the light of day on the 17th of November on Memphis Industries, and in mid-December, the pair will be playing the new material during a trio of English dates. Tickets are on sale now. For a taste of ‘Frozen by Sight’, have a listen to the track ‘Barcelona (At Eye Level)’ at the bottom of this post.
Thursday 18th December 2014 – Manchester Band on the Wall
Friday 19th December – London St. Giles-in-the-Fields
Saturday 20th December – Gateshead Sage
By Mary Chang
on Wednesday, 1st October 2014 at 6:00 pm
I remember watching a tv show years ago on American public television in which travel writer Rick Steves described Blackpool as Britain’s Coney Island. I had a hard time imagining a Coney Island in blighty, thinking that if it really existed, I’d be walking round the place in a confused daze. For their new promo for ‘The Horizon’, the title track of their upcoming EP, Natives took the idea of a cowboy visiting the North West seaside time for the first time and married it with another concept. Here’s how the band themselves describe their efforts:
With The Horizon we wanted to do something different to our previous videos. We had the initial idea of a cowboy experiencing a vibrant British town like Blackpool for the first time which we really liked the juxtaposition of. Together with Duncan Howsley we turned this into the final concept, a video about both the wonders and fears of exploring something new – about being young and sneaking out of your house and into the big city without your parents permission!
Watch the video below. ‘The Horizon’ EP from Natives will be out on the 13th of October.