By Mary Chang on Friday, 29th November 2013 at 4:00 pm
Oxford group Wild Swim have revealed a video from an intimate secret performance in London they did for Sofar Sounds in October. In this video, they play new song ‘Too Late’ in a stripped back way while being surrounded by their adoring fans. Watch it below.
By Mary Chang on Friday, 29th November 2013 at 11:00 am
The music business is a hard one. In recent years, we’ve seen the decline of record sales and record shops closing as an unfortunate consequence of music piracy. This has hurt bands and the industry as a whole. So it’s all the more important that we support some of the most important unsung heroes of music: independent music venues.
These places where we go to worship our musical heroes might not physically be as massive as those larger, sponsor-backed venues (you know which ones I’m talking about) but independently-owned, small- and medium-sized venues far exceed those behemoths in heart. They act as meeting places for culture, where the local community can come together and watch up and coming artists just starting out, and gigs there often serve as significant milestones for musicians and fans alike. But just like other sectors of the music industry, these smaller places to see music are struggling in this economy, and we are losing some of the most historic, important places of our musical heritage. So it’s high time we gave independent music venues the credit they deserve.
The inaugural 6-day event Independent Venue Week 2014, already receiving support from PRS and BBC Introducing, will boast a blinding assortment of amazing shows at 18 independent venues across Britain. Drowned in Sound, Moshi Moshi Records, Domino Records, The Musicians Union and UK Music have already pledged their involvement in the event as well. Jo Dipple of UK Music said of Independent Music Week:
Our great musical heritage is what defines us as a country and UK Music is fully committed to supporting venues large and small. Live music is the backbone of this country; from the Cavern Club to the Leadmill we have some of the most interesting venues in the world and it’s great to see them among those being celebrated as part of Independent Venue Week.
Venues confirmed for the 6-day event include Cardiff Clwb Ifor Bach in Wales (celebrating its 30th anniversary in 2013), Belfast Oh Yeah Centre in Northern Ireland, Glasgow King Tut’s in Scotland, Bristol Louisiana, Guildford Boileroom, Leeds Library, Liverpool Zanzibar, London Putney Half Moon pub, Manchester Soup Kitchen, Newcastle Cluny, Norwich Art Centre, Oxford Jericho, Plymouth Tiki Bar, Stoke Sugarmill (celebrating its 30th anniversary in 2013), Southampton Joiners (celebrating its 45th anniversary in 2013), Sheffield Leadmill, Tunbridge Wells Forum (celebrating its 20th anniversary in 2013) and York Fibbers. Drummer Philip Selway of Radiohead fondly recalls The Jericho’s importance in their band’s history:
Small venues are the lifeblood of British music. When you start out as a band, you aspire to playing in your local venue and feel a sense of achievement when you get a gig there. In Oxford, we grew up wanting to play at The Jericho Tavern, and were lucky enough to be signed after one of our shows there.
We’ve been lucky enough to have covered shows at many of these places, and we’re chuffed they’ll be participating in Independent Venue Week in 2014. Specific dates, locations and line-ups will be announced in the coming weeks, so stay tuned. But we’re already excited about this new event to celebrate our favourite places to see live bands.
By Mary Chang on Friday, 29th November 2013 at 10:00 am
Eclectic singer and electronic and guitar artist Sivu is currently on tour supporting TGTF friends Stornoway. No rest for the weary though; straight after the Stornoway tour, he will on a co-headlining tour with Marika Hackman that begins on the 10th of December in Brighton.
Ahead of that tour, here is a free download of a track he and Marika collaborated on, called ‘I Hold’. It all adds up to a Sivu lends electro eeriness to the track, while Miss Hackman provides her usual style of dreamy vocals. Haunting. Listen to and grab it for free below.
By Mary Chang on Thursday, 28th November 2013 at 6:00 pm
Norwegian electronic duo Royksopp have revealed this lyric video for their forthcoming single ‘Running to the Sea’, to be released on the 16th of December. It’s a slow burner, it will keep your heart rate pumping. Watch the lyric video below.
2013 may have seen Pure Love unceremoniously dumped from their label and frontman Frank Carter grow a rather unsightly and incredibly hipster ginger beard. But Pure Love are nonetheless one of easiest to recommend live acts doing the rounds at the moment. (And quite nice in person too:read my interview with Carter and musical partner Jim Carroll from last year here.)
Anybody familiar with Mr Carter knows that any live show – whether it’s The Rescue Rooms in Nottingham, The Engine Shed in Lincoln or the NME tent at Reading/Leeds Festival – carries with it a warning, that warning being “at any point Frank Carter may punch you in your face and make you look like a dick”. Yeah, so he is singing songs about being “sick of all the hate”, but that won’t stop the ex-Gallows man slugging you in the chops if you act like a mug in the crowd. Add in to that equation that he spends 90% of the gig in the crowd, singing, screaming and scrapping while also having his photo taken numerous times, and it’s a pretty volatile situation.
A volatile situation, but one that is at least 99% rock and roll.
I mean, for example he got the entire drum kit in the crowd, and started a circle pit around it. That’s fucking cool.
For the epitome of a total live experience, it’s difficult to look any further than Pure Love – and in the searing heat of Austin, Texas, Jonny and Frank are going to cause the kind of sweaty catastrophe of bodies that you would only really expect to find at a really good orgy.
That’s right: a Pure Love gig is like an orgy – sort of. [The kind of orgy that might involve inflatable dingeys; watch below - Ed.]
By Mary Chang on Thursday, 28th November 2013 at 10:00 am
New York City band the Postelles had gone quiet since the release of their second album ‘And It Shook Me’, released here in America in April. But I’m very pleased to announce the boys are back, and they’re being so sweet by giving away this free mp3 of new-ish song ‘On My Shoulder’. I say new-ish, because I know I’ve heard this song live before, it’s just been a while, but I’m happy it’s finally seeing the light of day. And now you can have the song for absolulely free. Have a listen below and if you like it, you can download it too.
And oh yeah, for those who celebrate it – HAPPY THANKSGIVING!