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This Week: Gig Roundup 6th – 12th April

April 7, 2015 in News

As touring season gets into full swing, we’ve got even more musical treats lined up for you with a show for every day of the week! The week kicks off with a visit from up-and-coming Scottish fuzz-pop duo Tuff Love, followed by a welcome return from New York noise-makers A Place To Bury Strangers, then a long-awaited hometown headline show from local heroes Superfood, plus Suburban Legends, Ekkah and Balthazar closing the week with a bang! The full week’s listings can be found below:


Tuff Love + The Jacarandas + Jump The Shark @ The Sunflower Lounge

Glasgow two-piece Tuff Love are creators of hyper-infectious, fuzzed-up, lo-fi pop music that the city is so famous for. The band have previously supported the likes of Real Estate, Perfect Pussy, Joanna Gruesome, Honeyblood & PAWS and have been championed by the likes of Lauren Laverne, Steve Lamacq, Rob Da Bank and Huw Stephens. Be sure to catch this band in a small venue while you can! Support comes from Birmingham indie-popsters The Jacarandas and Brit Award Winners Jump The Shark. Tickets are available here.

Listen to ‘Groucho’ below:


A Place To Bury Strangers + September Girls + Fauxchisels @ The Rainbow

New York noise purveyors A Place to Bury Strangers returned with their fourth studio album Transfixiation, released on the 17th February 2015 via Dead Oceans. Catch them debut tracks from the critically acclaimed album when they play The Rainbow on Tuesday, joined by Irish all-female noise-pop five-piece September Girls and local racket-makers Fauxchisels. It’s gonna get loud… Tickets are available here.

Watch the video for ‘You Are the One’ below:


Bipolar Sunshine + Cape Cub + Shatter Effect @ The Institute 

After announcing festival slots including Longitude, Reading & Leeds and Glastonbury, Bipolar Sunshine will once again make a hotly anticipated appearance at The Institute Birmingham. The solo project of Manchester based Adio Marchant, previously of Kid British fame, continues to impress and carve out his own singular path. Latest single ‘Daydreamer’, described as “a warm breeze of a song… that channels 1970′s Elton to dreamy effect” by  The Times, provides a teaser for his upcoming album. Support comes from much-talked-about solo artist Cape Cub and local electro rock act Shatter Effect. Tickets are available here.

Watch the video for ‘Deckchairs on the Moon’ below:

Superfood + YAK + Black Honey @ Rainbow Warehouse 

The Birmingham indie quartet play their biggest hometown headline show to date following the sold out NME New Breed Tour and the release of their debut album Don’t Say That on 3rd November through Infectious Music. Originally touted as heralding a re-birth of cheeky, choppy indie guitar pop, Superfood dug deeper to record an album that’s energy, warmth, and wit was infectious. The Midlands four-piece have travelled well over the past twelve months, taking to the road alongside Wolf Alice and We Are Scientists, but now they take to the Rainbow Warehouse joined by London-based buzzband YAK and up-and-comers Black Honey. Tickets are available here.

Watch the video for ‘Mood Bomb’ below:


Retox + Warsawwasraw + Opium Lord @ The Sunflower Lounge

Featuring Justin Pearson (The Locust, Head Wound City), Retox have emerged from the collective depths of San Diego & LA with their latest antagonistic effort, Beneath California. Varying styles and sonically experimenting, melding the raw with the refined, the band continuously teases, yet never settles on any one genre. Since their conception in 2011, they have toured with similarly like-minded acts such as Melt-Banana, Tomahawk, OFF!, The Dillinger Escape Plan, and Doomsday Student. Support comes from blistering avant-thrash punk duo Warsawwasraw and Opium Lord. Tickets are available here.

Watch the video for ‘Lets Not Keep In Touch’ below:

Suburban Legends & MC Lars + The Bottom Line @ The Rainbow

Third wave ska vets, Orange County’s Suburban Legends, return with their distinct blend of fizzy ska and sugary pop, with accents of disco and funk. The group’s latest EP, Dreams Aren’t Real But These Songs Are (Rock Ridge Music), is a reverently played and imaginatively arranged collection of Disney classics. Suburban Legends have built an impressive live profile playing multiple tours throughout the US, UK, Europe, and Canada, undertaking successful runs with big names like Reel Big FishLess Then JakeBowling for Soup, and GoldfingerThe band are joined by MC Lars and The Bottom Line. Tickets are available here.

Watch the video for ‘Kiss the Girl’ below:


The Assist + Fleece @ The Rainbow

The Assist are a 4 piece indie/alternative band from Walsall. The lads have a huge passion for real music, and their honest, hard hitting lyrics speak for themselves. It’s music that anyone can identify with from sing along anthems to infectious guitar riffs. They recently featured in the Itunes Alternative Chart with their track ‘Walsall FC Go To Wembley’, the official anthem for Walsall Football Club’s trip to the stadium. The band are joined by local indie four-piece Fleece. Tickets are available here.

Listen to ‘In Your Ear’ below:


Ekkah + Chartreuse @ The Sunflower Lounge

Hotly-tipped Birmingham duo EKKAH have announced they will return to The Sunflower Lounge this spring, following a triumphant headline show back in January. The pair recently released their much-anticipated debut EP Last Chance To Dance in November via new label Year One Recordings (UK) and Honeymoon (US). The band will be joined by local favourites Chartreuse. Tickets are available here.

Watch the video for ‘Last Chance to Dance’:


Balthazar + CHAMPS @ The Sunflower Lounge

The Belgian indie-rock quintet return with their much-anticipated third album Thin Walls, released 30th March via Play It Again Sam, the follow up 2012′s acclaimed effort Rats. Having been holed up in the studio, the band emerge bearing new tracks, whetting appetites and their first live shows of 2015, including a show at Birmingham’s Sunflower Lounge. Balthazar are joined by folk-pop duo CHAMPS. Tickets are available here.

Watch the video for ‘Bunker’ below:

Watch: A Place to Bury Strangers – ‘What We Don’t See’

April 2, 2015 in News

New York noise purveyors A Place to Bury Strangers have released the video for their latest single ‘What We Don’t See’.

Directed by Jimmy Fusil, the track is taken from the band’s latest album Transfixiation, released via Dead Oceans on February 17th. The album, that scored an impressive 8/10 on Drowned in Sound, sees the band produce a sound even closer to the intense level of their infamous live show.

Rather than fixate on precious recording techniques and minute details, the members of the group — Ackermann, Lunadon, and hard-hitting drummer Robi Gonzalez — trusted their instincts and tried to keep things as pure as possible. If that meant a mess of cross-contaminated microphones and mud-caked mistakes, so be it. Music is much more exhilarating when it’s unpredictable, and from the tortured straight-to-tape transmission of “I Will Die” and molten funk melodies of “Straight” to the violent guitar spasms, cannon-like drums and not-so-idle threats of “Deeper,” this is very much an unpredictable record.


Watch the video for ‘What We Don’t See’ below:

Interview: A Place To Bury Strangers

March 24, 2015 in News

We caught up with Oliver from A Place To Bury Strangers ahead of their gig at The Rainbow on Tuesday 7th April to talk about the creative process behind the band’s latest album and their pursuit of achieving the perfect live sound. Tickets are available here.


What’s the story behind new album Transfixiation, bearing in mind that previous releases seem to draw upon events that are happening in your lives? Does the same apply to this album?

It is a reflection of that and the past. As the albums go on they get a little bit more focused in their message. We are getting older so we have learned a lot. It is futile but we are working through the meaning of life.


Robi Gonzalez has been with you since 2012, yet he makes his recording debut on this album. Has there been much of an impact on the recording process and overall sound achieved with Gonzalez’ addition to the band?

There has. It was really easy to record this record. We were focusing on recording as much as we could live and Robi and Dion shine like diamonds when it comes to their capabilities. I wanted everyone to write their own parts for this record so that it could be something which related to them more personally. There is a big part of Robi’s style and finesse in the drum parts on this record and I think that makes it what it is.


Transfixiation is your fourth studio album. Looking back at your previous releases, how would you say your sound has evolved?

We did a lot of things differently on this record. It was recorded mostly live and that was the approach we were going for. We did play the songs many many times and tried different ways of capturing them. We were attempting to capture the sound of your eardrums rippling. I don’t know if you’ve ever had this happen but it you stick your head right in front of a very loud speaker cranked up eventually your eardrum feels like it is folding in on itself or bending. It’s like the little hairs are getting bent out of shape. This confuses you and makes you feel weird. Sort of a sick metallic sort of feeling. The power of the band live. The moment you beg for the vomit to get the hell out of your stomach.


You’ve said that on this album you tried to keep the recording process as pure as possible. Why is that?

People always say that our live show is so special. I always figured it had to do with something happening in a specific moment and being there while that was being created. This record has songs that were recorded right at the moment they were written, songs which are recorded live, songs which were demo recordings and songs which were crafted for days. When I said pure I meant for what is appropriate for each captured piece. It didn’t have to be recorded in any specific way. We just had to capture that magic moment. That was what was pure. Finding the essence and not creating it.


You’re known for your blisteringly loud live sound and wild, energetic performances. Would you say you put a lot of time and effort in creating such a captivating atmosphere for your live shows? How necessary is it for you to achieve this atmosphere considering your live reputation?

We spend a lot of time creating the tools we use as artists. We build lights, pedals, guitars and a lot of other things we want to use. I also feel like if you get the opportunity to do something then do it well. We get the chance to tour around the world and transform a space and venue into something else for a moment, we owe it to make that moment.


Your pursuit of achieving such an intense, distorted sound has manifested itself in your practice of assembling your own recording equipment. Could you tell us more about this and why it holds such an importance to you?

I am interested in the way sound works. How it interacts with other sounds and how these ways are perceived. We use these tools and creations to create our music. After diving so deeply in to wave theories and my own personal effects of music on myself these modes and methods are as important as the arrangement of the song. We focus on the whole creating and the act of creation from the beginning. This way it is something that we created and I can feel proud of that and feel that it is honest. If we had someone else create it for us it would only be an idea through another persons idea. This is not a bad thing. Collaboration is important and no one is so damn special they can do everything on their own. But the more we have a hand in what we do the more we can be precise with our message.


A Place to Bury Strangers play The Rainbow Birmingham on Tues 7th April 2015, with support from September Girls. Tickets available here.

Watch the video for ‘Straight’ below: