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LISTEN: Nick Mulvey – Wake Up Now

September 11, 2017 in News

Escaping to the isolation of the countryside led to Nick Mulvey reaching out musically for new album Wake Up Now, out now via Fiction Records.

“This is an album about celebrating life, when life is not just your circumstances, work and family, but the vitality of your being, your aliveness,” says Nick Mulvey of his upcoming second album, Wake Up Now. Since the release of 2014’s First Mind, the former Portico Quartet hang drum player and his wife Isadora have moved from East London to an artist’s community in Wiltshire. They’ve also had a baby son, Inka. Nick wrote the songs for Wake Up Now in parallel to his wife’s pregnancy. It’s no wonder he feels dizzy with the preciousness of life.

“When my son was born, everything was heightened,” he says. “Songs started to arrive however they wanted to arrive, and I was just as much writing them down as writing them myself,” he tells me. The result is an album which feels very present – not solely in its themes and lyrical content (although current events cannot help but slip in, as in stories of the refugee crisis in ‘Myela’) – but in its brightness and vivacity. “Oh my goodness me, I’m not ok!” sings Nick, leading a choir, on ‘Transform Your Game’. It’s an admittance of weakness, but sung with a celebratory instinct, because it is the realisation that matters. If ‘Wake Up Now’ isn’t simply concerned with recent political events, it instead touches on a more widespread “awakening of consciousness and opening up a new level of understanding,” in Nick’s words.

Nick is a humble man. He speaks calmly and thoughtfully, often pausing for seconds at a time to ensure he is wording his thoughts correctly. Several times throughout conversation, he’ll hold his hands into a prayer-like shape, and bow his head. The first thing he mentions when asked what he misses most since moving away from London? Local yoga classes. He admits he is speaking “freely” and “openly” today – and that he’s doing so because he is pleased to be able to talk about the world rather than just his personal life.

Nick Mulvey Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter

Listen to Wake Up Now here.

Nick Mulvey plays O2 Institute Birmingham on Mon 9th October 2017. Tickets available here.

Watch the video for ‘Mountain To Move’ below:

Jared & The Mill to play Birmingham show

September 5, 2017 in News

Jared & The Mill is a southwestern indie rock band, formed in 2011 in Phoenix, AZ. The band has spent the past few years touring extensively through the venues, dives, theatres, festivals, and arenas of the U.S. and Canada, playing alongside new burgeoning bands and established acts, and developing a strong and rooted fan base along the way. The band has multiple and successful independent releases, the most recent 2016, Orme Dugaswas recorded and produced by Ryan Hewitt in Nashville, Tennessee.

“Orme Dugas blurs lines to the point where the ambiguity becomes an asset unto itself, a record that sounds exactly like Jared & The Mill to the returning listener but a little more gray to a newcomer. It’s not rock, it’s not country, it’s not folk, but it’s not quite pop. So where do they fit? They’ve opened for the Zac Brown Band, the War on Drugs, Allen Stone, & The Killers, to name a few, and while it’s an impressive list, it’s a still a grab bag. Their undefinable nature is also their strongest weapon.” – K.C. Libman Phoenix New Times

As the band has stated, “Our music has been called, compared and regarded by a number of different names and genres, and we’ve been influenced and shaped by many different events and people, but more than anything, we’d like to think that some shred of the Southwest — of our home — can be found in the heart of our music.”

Jared & The Mill Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter

Jared & The Mill play Actress & Bishop Birmingham on Mon 30th October 2017. Tickets available here.

Listen to ‘Keep Me Going’ below:

Model Aeroplanes announce Birmingham show

September 1, 2017 in News

Since forming in January 2013, Model Aeroplanes have released a string of singles that have seen them work their way into the nation’s pop psyche. After only eight gigs the band were hand picked to perform at their first T in the Park in 2013 and have since been on an epic rollercoaster of tours and festivals, gaining fans from around the country very early on in their career.

The band have been on a journey that has seen them support some of their favourite bands such as The ViewTwin AtlanticLittle Comets and hotly tipped newcomer Saint Raymond as well as their own sold out headline tour. The band have also been busy at other festivals winning crowds over at places like Dot-to-Dot, The Great Escape and Live at Leeds.

Having recently found a new home at Island Records, the rest of 2015 holds big things for Model Aeroplanes with a pile of further festival appearances as well as the release of their debut EP.

Model Aeroplanes Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter

Model Aeroplanes play Actress & Bishop Birmingham on Fri 24th November 2017. Tickets available here.

Watch the video for ‘Whatever Dress Suits You Better’ below:

Kagoule announce show at Actress & Bishop

September 1, 2017 in News

From Nottingham, Kagoule have been slowly carving a name for themselves with a blend of post-punk, progressive indie, and ballistic originality. Getting their big break supporting Dog Is Dead, the trio recently played the BBC Introducing stage at Glastonbury and have toured with Kappa Gamma.

Fiercely independent and with a steadfast vision for the minutiae of every aspect of their presentation, Kagoule are band born out of the school-yard, the trio of Cai Burns, Lucy Hatter and Lawrence English coming together a half decade ago. “We represent the sound of boredom,” says Hatter, of the band’s inception. “The sound of three 15 year olds wanting to do something,” says Hatter.

Recorded while still in their teens, Kagoule’s debut album Urth draws on a wealth of unexpected influences – the best US underground obscurities of the 80s and 90s, the dark folk music of Pentangle and playing style of Bert Jansch, contemporary fantasy and sci-fiction literature, ancient wood-cut artwork and so much more. Sound-wise they recall the energy and ideas of Bikini Kill, the sugar-dusted grunge of Smashing Pumpkins and the angular rhythms and confrontational post-hardcore blueprint of FugaziSlint and fellow Nottingham band Bob Tilton, with a pedal rack (metaphorically) half-inched from Dinosaur Jr. But – crucially – perhaps only to those old enough to have heard those bands first time around.

Kagoule Links: Soundcloud | Facebook | Twitter

Kagoule play Actress & Bishop Birmingham on Fri 10th November 2017, with support from Catholic Action. Tickets available here.

Watch the video for ‘Magnified’ below:

Freya Ridings announces Birmingham show

September 1, 2017 in News

23 year-old Londoner Freya Ridings released her debut single ‘Blackout’ in May 2017. Produced by Rich Costey, it has flown past 1m Spotify streams. Her latest single, ‘Maps’ (a breathtaking version of the Yeah Yeah Yeahsoriginal song) is already proving to do the same as word begins to spread of this young talent.

Fast forward a few months and she has secured numerous summer festival bookings, sold-out her first headline show at St. Pancras Church in London and now she will be playing a bigger London show on the 29th October at St Giles on the Field; both shows promoted by Communion. This is just the start for Freya Ridings.

Freya Ridings Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter

Freya Ridings plays The Sunflower Lounge Birmingham on Wed 18th October 2017. Tickets available here.

Watch the video for ‘Maps’ below: