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This Week: Gig Roundup 23rd February – 1st March

February 24, 2015 in News

We have a very busy week of gigs this week with something for everyone, including a very special intimate show with Icelandic composer/performer Olafur Arnalds, a sold out show from folk-pop duo Slow Club, and fresh from supporting Twin Atlantic, a visit from Southend rockers Nothing But Thieves. Check out the full listings below for more info…


Olafur Arnalds @ The Glee Club

Since the release of his debut album Eulogy for Evolution in 2007, the Icelandic composer has built up a dedicated international following and is well established for his genre-crossing compositions blending classical, pop and ambient/electronica influences to create a unique musical language. Known for having his music featured in films such as Hunger Games and 300 – Rise Of An Empire, Arnalds recently provided the music to ITV thriller series Broadchurch, which went on to scoop a BAFTA for Best Music. Tickets are available here.

Watch the video for ‘Only the Winds’ below:


Leddra Chapman + Lee Broderick + Corrina Jane @ The Sunflower Lounge

The critically acclaimed folk-pop singer songwriter, favoured by Radio 2 and described as “pitch-perfect acoustic pop” by The Independent plays The Sunflower Lounge playing songs from her latest album Fidelity and Grace released January 2015. She will be joined by Liverpool singer-songwriter Lee Broderick and piano driven singer/songwriter Corinna Jane. Tickets available here.

Watch the video for ‘Playground’ below:


Sivu + James Attwood @ The Sunflower Lounge

Described as a ‘one man Wild Beasts’ by The Guardian, London based Sivu aka James Page, first caught attention for the innovative MRI-machine video for his critically acclaimed single ‘Better Man Than He’ back in 2013. He released his debut album Something On High in October 2014. Support comes from Birmingham indie-acoustic artist James Attwood. Tickets available here.

Watch the video for ‘Better Man Than He’ below:


Slow Club + Happyness @ The Sunflower Lounge *SOLD OUT*

The Sheffield boy-girl duo Charles Watson and Rebecca Taylor, released their career-defining album Complete Surrender last year to widespread critical acclaim. The record breaks away from the nu-folk sound heard in previous years, touching upon Motown and the output of Memphis’ Stax Records to the immaculately produced pop of the 1970s, via Frankie Valli and David Bowie. The band are joined by much-hyped London trio Happyness. 

Watch the video for ‘Everything Is New’ below:


DELS + TrueMendous + Lady Sanity @ The Rainbow

London hip-hop artist, championed by Radio 1, makes a triumphant return with second album Petals Have Fallen, following his critically acclaimed debut GOB. The album is a stunning consolidation of everything that makes DELS great, a giant leap forward sonically and imaginatively, an ultra-modern hip-hop masterpiece. Support comes from Birmingham female hip-hop artists  TrueMendous and Lady Sanity. Tickets available here.

Watch the video for ‘Burning Beaches’ below:


Nothing But Thieves + Twin Wild + Romans @ The Sunflower Lounge

Southend five-piece Nothing But Thieves evoke the profound dynamics of music’s more creative imaginations. Drawing inspiration from the bombast of Muse, the playfulness of Kasabian, the unpredictability of Arcade Fire, the songs on debut EP Graveyard Whistling reimagine the majesty of rock and roll. Support comes from Twin Wild and Romans. Tickets available here.

Watch the video for ‘Wake Up Call’ below:

Sivu to play The Sunflower Lounge Birmingham

December 15, 2014 in Introducing, News

Born in the sleepy town of St.Ives, Cambridgeshire, but moving to London to pursue music, 24-year-old James Page struggled to adapt to the capital. He worked as an administrator for a bailiff company, played a crash-course of depressing open mic nights, and then took up a permanent fixture in a call centre in Waterloo – the latter of which strengthened his work ethic, and the songwriting process itself.

Sivu’s luck began to change when, whilst playing bass for a friend’s band, he struck up a relationship with Charlie Andrew,who had just finished producing Alt J’s then to be Mercury winning An Awesome Wave. Charlie encouraged him to keep pursuing his own material, as James began to build strange sounds and textures around these dark yet ultimately hopeful songs. The MRI-machine video for ‘Better Man Than He’ went viral, and even more people began to take notice. At the end of 2013, after delaying the process for as long as humanly possible, Sivu finally handed in his notice at the call centre, signed a record deal with Atlantic Records and finished up his debut album Something On High which was released in October 2014.

“Heavenly…like one-man Wild Beasts” – The Guardian

“Heartswelling acoustic dexterity and glittering electronics…irresistible” – NME Radar

Sivu Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter 


Watch the video for ‘Better Man Than He’ below:

Weekly Gig Roundup 18th – 24th November

November 18, 2013 in News

Check out our list of live music events to warm your fingers and toes at this week!



On Wednesday, electro solo artist Brolin plays a free entry show at The Yardbird as part of his UK headline tour. Described as ‘the new Burial’ by The Guardian and ahead of his tour support with Gold Panda, Brolin plays with local sample improviser James Brough at this special and intimate event. Find out further information over on the event page.

Listen to ‘Reykjavik’ by Brolin below.



Thursday welcomes Northern Irish songwriter Foy Vance to the Hare & Hounds in Kings Heath. Influenced by his time in the southern states of America and drawing from the feelings that love inspires, Foy Vance promises a beautiful set including numbers from his recently released second album, Joy Of Nothing. On support is Rams’ Pocket Radio, the alias of Northern Irish multi-instrumentalist Peter McCauley. Taking inspiration from Beethoven to brutalist architecture, be sure to get down early so as not to miss this varied performer. Tickets for this event are priced at £12 advance and are available over on the event page.

Listen to ‘Guiding Light’ (ft. Ed Sheeran) by Foy Vance below.



On Friday, indie pop five-piece theLights return to Birmingham to play their last show of 2013 at The Victoria. Fresh from recording with legendary producer Gavin Monaghan, they’ll play a selection of old and new material. Entry to the evening is priced at just £5 on the door – find out further information here.



Saturday sees a very special performance from Birmingham indie-punk ruffians Untitled Musical Project who reform this year to play two shows only. Friends again for this night at least, Untitled Musical Project are joined by Birmingham three-piece Youth Man and electronic math duo, Tales. Purchase your tickets for what promises to be a completely explosive performance for £5 advance here or make your way to The Sunflower Lounge from 7:30pm.

Listen to ‘The People Versus Michael Miller’ by Untitled Musical Project below.



Round off your week on Sunday with one of the following; the weekly extravaganza which is the Sunday Social at The Yardbird which this week features performances from Nottingham five-piece, Amber Run; plus support from Merseyside-based singer-songwriter Natalie McCool; local singer songwriter and Bombergs’ frontman, Rick Wellings; and folk blues musician, Zee Khattak. Pop into this free event from the cold of the German Christmas Market which runs outside it, and find out more about all of the acts here.

Listen to ‘Noah’ by Amber run below.


Over at The Institute in Digbeth, Oxford indie folk four-piece Stornoway celebrate the release of their second album, Tales From Tera Firma, and an incredibly successful year. Drawing influences from Tom Waits, and John Adams and with nods to 19th century poets John Clare and Samuel Coleridge along the way, expect a wonderfully wistful affair from these boys. Support comes courtesy of intricate Cambridge singer songwriter, Sivu, and local folk/Americana five-piece Goodnight Lenin. Expect something truly special at this event – pick up your tickets for £14 advance from the event page.

Listen to ‘When You Touch Down From Outer Space’ by Stornoway below.


Finally, husband and wife indie pop duo Summer Camp return to Birmingham to play live at the Hare & Hounds. Having released their self-titled second album earlier in the year, the couple will play a selection from both LPs in what promises to be a stunning performance. Support is provided by London’s Fryars – pick up tickets for this event, priced at £8.50 advance, here.

Listen to ‘Fresh’ by Summer Camp below.

Stornoway to play The Institute Birmingham

October 23, 2013 in News

Fresh from releasing their highly acclaimed second album Tales From Tera Firma, and concluding their spring headline tour, Oxford’s finest Stornoway have announced their return to the road this winter for a run of dates during November and December including Birmingham’s The Institute.

It starts with a breathless, brimming affirmation of enduring love and ends with a becalmed reflection on life and loss as dusk draws in. Between these two elemental bookends Stornoway’s superb second album pauses to contemplate birth, death, family, sex, nature, joy, pain and the precise location of home. There are Turkish zithers and there are German spoons. It is the sound of one long song of life unfurling.

Drawing from influences as varied as Tom Waits, John Adams and David Gilmour, with nods along the way to 19th-century poets John Clare and Samuel Taylor Coleridge, it is a multi-textured, hyper-melodic, stirringly emotional piece of work. It is also a fantastic pop record.

If their debut captured the guileless rush of first love contemplated from a teenage bedroom, the follow up, Tales From Terra Firma, frequently describes a deeper, more complex world and more readily acknowledges the shadow as well as the sun. The title of their second album might place them firmly on solid ground, but in every other respect Stornoway are soaring.

Stornoway Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter


Watch the video for ‘The Bigger Picture’ below:

Benjamin Francis Leftwich plays The Institute

May 19, 2013 in News

The first thing you notice is the voice. Haunting and sublimely otherworldly, it stops you in your tracks proving that sometimes the intoxicating simplicity of a single voice is all you need to make an impact. With Benjamin Francis Leftwich, that hypnotic, breathy voice is the reason for it all. Not just your average singer-songwriter then.

Growing up on a diet of Rolling Stones and Nina Simone, Benjamin discovered Bob Dylan and Elliot Smith in his teens, starting work as a solo artist at 18 and beginning to write what now makes up his debut album Last Smoke Before The Snowstorm.

The breathtaking results were well worth waiting for. Inspired by the likes of Ryan Adams, Bruce Springsteen, Arcade Fire and Sigur Ros, Benjamin took his time creating a sound that is truly his, that reveals a little more of himself with every single breath and moment.

Released to much critical acclaim, the album was an instant Top 20 hit in the UK Album Chart, and enjoyed heavy radio support from the likes of Radio 1, 6Music and Xfm. A huge number of festival appearances followed including Glastonbury, Reading & Leeds, Green Man, Bestival, and many more, plus a massive 28 date sold out UK tour. This May, Ben and his band embark on a short run of headline shows including Birmingham’s The Institute and his biggest headline show to date at The Forum in London.

Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter


Check out the video for ‘Pictures’ below: