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WIN / Tix to Original Penguin Plugged In session December 2014 in London starring Wild Smiles and Citizens

 
By on Wednesday, 3rd December 2014 at 11:00 am
 

Ah yes, it is really December. But before your heart gets too cold, those hip folks over at fashion house Original Penguin are putting on another one of their amazing Plugged In sessions at the famed London venue the Hospital Club on the 10th of this month. As we did for the show in June starring Nick Mulvey and THUMPERS, July’s with Twin Atlantic and We Are Scientists and the one in October featuring Peace and Tigercub, we’re very happy to have a pair of tickets to give away to this month’s event.

The December Original Penguin show will star Southampton’s Wild Smiles and London band Citizens. Whether you’re just up for a gig or planning on gifting these to your beloved as an early Christmas present (and you can never be too early, am I right?), you can enter our lucky draw below. Normally the only way into these special Original Penguin shows is if you sign up here on their Web site to put your name in for the company’s lucky draw. But as I mentioned before, we’ve got a pair of tickets to give away and we want to give them to a deserving TGTF reader.

In the form below, please fill out your full name and your email address. Then to make sure you really want to see this show (and also to confirm you’re not a robot!), you’ll need to correctly answer this question: What’s the name of Wild Smiles’ debut album released this year? Get your entries in by noon British time on this Friday, the 5th of December. We’ll choose a winner from all the correct entries received and contact him/her by email. Good luck! Please note: this contest is open to UK residents only who can get themselves to London for the show, and the winner and guest must be 18+ or you will be turned away at the door (and we wouldn’t want anyone to be disappointed). All duplicate entries will be discarded.

This contest is now closed. The winner will be contacted by email.

 

(SXSW 2015 flavoured!) Live Gig Video: Skinny Lister reveal promo for ‘Trouble on Oxford Street’, filmed at London 100 Club

 
By on Tuesday, 2nd December 2014 at 4:00 pm
 

Recently signed to Xtra Mile Recordings (the label home of Frank Turner and To Kill A King), six-piece folk-punk outfit Skinny Lister are set to release their second studio album ‘Down On Deptford Broadway’ next spring, just after their scheduled appearance at SXSW 2015. Along with the album release information, the band have also unveiled the video for ‘Trouble on Oxford Street’, which will feature on the new LP. Directed by The Film Smith and Wild Stag Studio, the high energy video includes live footage from a sold out Skinny Lister headline show at London’s 100 Club in October 2014.

Previous TGTF coverage of Skinny Lister, including their recently announced UK tour dates for next spring, can be found here.

[youtube]http://youtu.be/AB3ew6BZiv0[/youtube]

 

Live Review: Vance Joy with Jaymes Young at Marquee Theatre, Tempe, AZ – 24th November 2014

 
By on Tuesday, 2nd December 2014 at 2:00 pm
 

I think most live music aficionados would agree that the atmosphere of a venue has an effect on the overall gig experience. Normally, that effect is fairly moderate, either a pleasant surprise or a mild annoyance, but in the most extreme cases, venue staff and policies can truly make or break a show. I found out last Monday night that the Marquee Theatre in Tempe, Arizona, is one of those venues that could potentially go either way, even in the course of a single show. In this case, the gig in question featured Australian hit maker Vance Joy, supported by American blues rocker Jaymes Young. Originally scheduled for the more intimate Crescent Ballroom in Phoenix (where I saw The Antlers back in July), the show was upgraded to the larger Marquee Theatre due to the blossoming popularity of Joy’s recent debut album ‘Dream Your Life Away’.

The Marquee Theatre is located just outside of downtown Tempe, itself a suburb of Phoenix. This just-outside-of-downtown location is somewhat inconvenient, as the venue is nestled into an awkward spot at the intersection of the Salt River, the Tempe Light Rail, the Red Mountain Freeway and main downtown thoroughfare Mill Avenue. The Marquee does offer a limited amount of on-site parking, but because I had to make the two-hour drive from Tucson, I didn’t arrive anywhere near early enough to take advantage of it for this sold-out show. Parking and walking back to the venue took close to half an hour, and I passed no fewer than three ticket scalpers as I traversed the three blocks. Once I arrived, I stood in three different lines before entering the building. The first was for a bag search (my packet of gum was confiscated because the venue has just installed new flooring) and a body pat down (no, that’s not a joke). In the second line, I was asked for ID to confirm my age (which apparently has no bearing on my ability to control chewing gum). I then entered the third line to have my ticket scanned and only to discover that, though the venue offered electronic tickets, the staff were unable to scan the QR code on my smartphone. After the slightly annoying delay of having the code manually entered by the unfailingly polite entrance staff, I walked into the venue just as Jaymes Young strummed the first chords of ‘Habits of My Heart’ on his electric guitar.

[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CDJOP16yNdY[/youtube]

Despite my tardy arrival, I was able to find a spot with a good view, even from the back of the room. One nice thing about the Marquee Theatre is its excellent sight lines and another major plus for the venue is the surprisingly clear quality of the acoustics. I was able to see and hear remarkably well from my place just in front of the sound station. (Unfortunately, my smartphone photos don’t do the sight lines any justice. A new camera is on my holiday wish list!) I can’t speak for what might have gone on nearer to the stage, but in the back of the room, my fellow gig-goers were easygoing and mellow, not at all bothered to push and shove for better position, as there was really no need.

Jaymes Young at Marquee Theatre 24 Nov 2014

The stage and sound set up at the Marquee were definitely favorable for opening act Jaymes Young. He and his two bandmates were able to play a their 7-song set with the benefit of full sound and lighting, which probably kept his r&b-flavoured alt-rock from becoming mere background music for the multitudes of Vance Joy fans. Judging from the occasional squeals and shouts from the crowd, Young had a fair few dedicated fans at the Marquee, and his cover of John Mayer’s ‘I Don’t Trust Myself (With Loving You)’ was a particular favourite. Young and his mates were adept and personable on stage, but their original songs didn’t strike me as particularly special, especially after my recent exposure to English singer/songwriter James Bay. Bay and Young occupy similar niches in the blues rock troubadour market, but Young’s lyrics and vocals pale slightly in the comparison, as does his grey fedora alongside Bay’s trademark floppy headwear. Nevertheless, a quick post-concert listen on Spotify revealed that there might be more to Young’s songwriting than meets the eye (or ear?), and he is now officially on my radar.

Jaymes Young at Marquee Theatre 24 Nov 14

After the brief stage break, Vance Joy’s entrance was surprisingly understated if not actually anti-climactic. He met the enthusiastic applause of the audience with a rather shy smile as he launched into ‘Emmylou’ from his 2013 EP ‘God Loves You When You’re Dancing’. It was an interesting opening choice, as the track doesn’t appear on his hugely successful current LP, but Joy seemed intent on teasing his audience, making us wait to the very end for the songs we already knew and loved.

Vance Joy on the big screen at Marquee Theatre

For the meantime, Joy created a seamless if predictable set list, including 9 of the 13 tracks on ‘Dream Your Life Away’. I was especially pleased to hear ‘Georgia’, which is my personal favorite from the album, while older track ‘Snaggletooth’ garnered nostalgic applause from the members of the audience who were more familiar with Joy’s back catalogue. Joy and his bandmates played a tight, well-rehearsed set, which is to be expected as they near the end of their North American tour, but while the songs themselves were exquisitely performed, they did suffer from a slight lack of spontaneity. Joy himself was reserved on stage, keeping the between-songs conversation to a minimum and for the most part seeming content to stand behind the mic stand and sing. Aside from his guitar and ukulele playing, Joy’s stage movement consisted mostly of marching in place to the more upbeat numbers on the set list. For my money, Joy might do well to let this rather endearing quirk grow into a more natural stage presence to match the relaxed momentum of his music.

Vance Joy with ukulele at Marquee Theatre

Joy did noticeably relax when he started the intro to ‘Riptide’, which received an enormous wave of applause. The energy of the well-known radio hit might have benefited Joy earlier on in the show, as the subdued audience suddenly burst into lively dancing and singing along, and I finally shook off my crankiness about the evening’s earlier events. Joy received a similarly enthusiastic response to current American radio single ‘Mess is Mine’, which closed the set proper. I wondered at that point if Joy would be able to pull off an encore, but there he proved that he had at least one surprise up his sleeve. After an appropriate interval off stage, he and his bandmates reappeared to perform a charming extended version of Ben E. King’s ‘Stand By Me’, with an energetic reprise of ‘Riptide’ in the instrumental bridge.

[youtube]http://youtu.be/uJ_1HMAGb4k[/youtube]

Vance Joy will have plenty of opportunity to polish his onstage manner in the coming months. He will be on tour in America through mid-December before making a run of Australian dates early next year, and he has recently announced a summer 2015 tour of North America in support of Taylor Swift. A complete list of live dates can be found on Joy’s official Web site.

After the cut: Jaymes Young and Vance Joy’s set lists.
Continue reading Live Review: Vance Joy with Jaymes Young at Marquee Theatre, Tempe, AZ – 24th November 2014

 

Live Gig Video: Los Campesinos! play ‘Avocado, Baby’ at Birmingham Flapper on Dr. Martens’ #STANDFORSOMETHING Tour

 
By on Friday, 28th November 2014 at 4:00 pm
 

Last Saturday, off-kilter Cardiff-based indie pop band Los Campesinos! stopped in at the Flapper in Birmingham as part of the second to last date on the current Dr. Martens #STANDFORSOMETHING tour. Here they are performing ‘Avocado, Baby’, off their 2013 album ‘No Blues’. Thankfully, the Haim sisters were nowhere near the place, allowing frontman Gareth to concentrate on the performance at hand. Watch below.

The last date on the #STANDFORSOMETHING tour – starring Sydney group Tonight Alive – takes place tomorrow, the 29th of November, at Newcastle Cluny 2. To read further coverage of the band on TGTF, head this way.

[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fWE-VfdbxbQ[/youtube]

 

WIN / Tickets to see Saint Saviour and Bill Ryder-Jones in Manchester -OR- London

 
By on Friday, 28th November 2014 at 11:00 am
 

Saint Saviour and Bill Ryder-Jones, her collaborator and producer of her third album ‘In the Seams’ out this month, will be coheadlining a UK tour in December. The series of dates kicks off next Tuesday, the 2nd of December, at Cambridge Portland Arms. Our friends at Gigs and Tours have given us a pair each to this tour’s Manchester (the 6th of December at Deaf Institute) and London (the 12th of December at the Tabernacle) shows, and we’re wanting to give them away to lucky TGTF readers. Think of it as an early Christmas present from us! To be in the running for the tickets, follow the directions below to fill out the contest form.

First, give your full name and your email address so we can contact you if you win. Second, tell us which show you want to win tickets for (Manchester or London). Then, to make sure you’re not a robot (who can tell these days?), tell us where Saint Saviour is from. We will then choose a winner for each show all the correct entries received.

Get your entries in by noon British time Tuesday, the 2nd of December. We’ll contact the winners by email. Good luck! Please note: this contest is open to UK residents only who can get him/herself to the city of the show. All duplicate entries will be discarded.

If you’d rather buy tickets to the tour instead, Becky Jones and Ryder-Jones will be calling at:

Tuesday 2nd December 2014 – Cambridge Portland Arms
Thursday 4th December 2014 – Stockton-on-Tees Georgian Theatre
Friday 5th December 2014 – Glasgow Nice and Sleazy’s
Saturday 6th December 2014 – Manchester Deaf Institute
Monday 8th December 2014 – Birmingham Horse and Hounds
Tuesday 9th December 2014 – Bristol Lantern
Wednesday 10th December 2014 – Brighton Studio Bar
Friday 12th December 2014 – London Tabernacle
Saturday 13th December 2014 – Liverpool Kazimier

This contest is now closed. The winners will be contacted by email.

 

Live Review: The Wytches at DC9, Washington DC – 20th November 2014

 
By on Monday, 24th November 2014 at 2:00 pm
 

“Hypnotic. Arabian funeral. Depression in the desert. Sepia rainbows.

“This is the psychedelic nightmare spun by The Wytches, who are spreading their subversive message across the UK in the dark guide of SOS surf riffs, desert riffs, melancholic shuffles and a kaleidoscopic stage performance that will put you under.”

This was the description on the DC9 Web site of Thursday evening’s headliner the Wytches. Quite accurate, I reckon: there is a dark and dangerous undercurrent of subversion to the music of the Brighton-based trio, which initially sounded strange to me, given that they live by the beautiful southern coastline of England. However, I learned on the night that two of their band members are originally from Peterborough; I’ll have to ask our John what the deal is with that place and if it informs the pervading doom and gloom of their sound. But that is neither here nor there: what is far more important to note is that despite my initial impression of the tracks of theirs I heard online and thinking, “is that all?”, the live performance of the Wytches is an interesting, beguiling mixture of swirly guitar and powerful bass and drum beats, delivered with animalistic, raw vocals, and money spent on a ticket to see this band will be worth every last penny.

Further, anyone who has listened to their music before knows of the muscle and raucousness of the group’s sound, but what you will find when experiencing them live is the nuances of brilliant songwriting that might not be immediately apparent to the untrained ear. That is, there is method to this madness. They can write and play a good song, as well as give good show. Isn’t it a truly sad development of popular music that these three things are all too often mutually exclusive these days?

I found myself easily and entirely willingly drawn into the Eastern-tinged melodies of the band, most always delivered alongside a punishing rhythm section. There were moments where I could not help but smile to myself, thinking about my younger years when I thought Led Zeppelin’s ‘Kashmir’ was a pretty cool tune. I’m happy to say that the kind of vibe managed by Led Zeppelin on ‘Physical Graffiti’ has not only been inspirational to a younger generation of musicians, the vibe is been continued. And stretched, modified and improved on.

Past singles ‘Wire Frame Mattress’ and ‘Burn Out the Bruise’ are noteworthy for the anguished screams of guitarist/frontman Kristian Bell and its entirely headbanging-inducing thunder well appreciated by the crowd assembled in Washington. The seductive rhythm of ‘Robe for Juda’, probably better known to most readers of TGTF for its extremely low-budget video, doesn’t fail to bring rapture to tonight’s audience, is a standout at this show too, along with debut single ‘Digsaw’. All the while, you can only be mesmerised by what is enfolding in front of your very eyes: three young men, clearly skilled with their weapon of choice, giving their all and ostensibly, if you pay close attention to the lyrics, giving life what for when it comes to the suffering of relationship-based angst.

‘Weights and Ties’ provides a superb counterpoint, showing the band’s more surf pop, softer side. See, they can play their instruments without pummeling them to death. ‘Wide at Midnight’, characterised by a slower tempo than most of the Wytches’ debut album ‘Annabel Dream Reader’, is another indicator that there is far more here than just loud guitars, loud drumming and wailing. Both tell me that there is still plenty of mileage in the ethos this trio are peddling. More, please.

You might be in luck to catch the band live next week after they return from the States; all the details of their last dates in 2014 are this way.

 
 
 

About Us

There Goes The Fear is where we tell you about the latest music, gigs, and tours we love and think you should too.

We love music that has its heart on its sleeve, tells a story, swims around our head all day or makes us dance like no-one's watching.

TGTF is edited by Mary Chang, who is based in Washington, DC. She is joined by writers in England, America and Ireland. It began as a UK music blog by Phil Singer in 2005.

All MP3s are posted with the permission of the artists or their representatives and are for sampling only. Like the music? Buy it.

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