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Hannah Peel announces Birmingham show

February 20, 2017 in News

“A beautiful record – one of the albums of the year” – Lauren Laverne, BBC 6 Music
“Rich, detailed and beguiling’ – The Irish Times ****

“A great singer and a latter day Delia Derbyshire” – The Observer

The Northern Irish artist, singer and electronic composer and member of the The Magnetic NorthHannah Peel released her new solo album Awake But Always Dreaming to great acclaim at the end of 2016, with Q Magazine describing the album as a ‘sublime electronic opus’ in their 4 star review.

Peel first came to recognition with her mesmerizing, hand-punched ‘music box’ EP Rebox, featuring covers of ‘80s bands Cocteau Twins, Soft Cell, & New Order. Having released her critically lauded solo debut album The Broken Wave, Peel then formed The Magnetic North, a highly praised and expansive collaborative project with Simon Tong(The VerveGorillaz) and Erland Cooper (Erland & The Carnival).

2016 was Peel’s busiest year to date: in addition to her solo album, she collaborated with Beyond The Wizard’s Sleeve (aka Erol Alkan & Richard Norris) on the singles ‘Diagram Girl’ and ‘Creation’ and her band The Magnetic North released their widely praised second album, Prospect Of Skelmersdale in March ’16.

Hannah Peel Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter

Hannah Peel plays The Sunflower Lounge Birmingham on Mon 3rd April 2017. Tickets available here.

Watch the video for ‘All That Matters’ below:

LISTEN: The Good Water – ‘Mansaid’

February 10, 2017 in News

The Good Water release their new single ‘Mansaid’ on Friday 10th February.

The new single from Birmingham based garage psych-rockers showcases psych-pop harmonies alongside frantic riffs and comes hot on the heels of their previous single ‘See Your Light’. This received airplay from Steve Lamacq, Mary-Anne Hobbes and Shaun Keaveny at BBC 6Music, as well as tastemakers at Amazing Radio and influential LA stations KROQ and Indie 1031.

Since forming in early 2015, The Good Water have been busy. The boys quickly picked up loyal support from Brum Radio with their drone-rock debut single ‘Everything Is’, gained new fans at raucous shows around the Midlands and blew away audiences supporting Mercury Rev, Super Furry Animals and Bill Ryder-Jones at Lunar Festival. The duo’s brand of psychedelic rock grooves, obscure lyrics and nimble riffs is streamlined into tight garage-pop frameworks. The press have been quick to spot their talents, with rave reviews from Soundsphere Magazine, Ear To The Ground Music, Slap Magazine, Diamond Deposits, Born Music Online and Mytacism Music amongst many others.

The Good Water Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter

The Good Water will be supporting King Salami & The Cumberland Three at The Sunflower Lounge Thurs 23rd March 2017. Tickets available here.

Listen to ‘Mansaid’ below:

WATCH: Stevie Parker – ‘Without You’

February 7, 2017 in News

Stevie Parker has launched her stunning new single ‘Without You’ today, directed by Tom Ralph. The track was premiered on Huw StephensRadio 1 show last night.

Stevie Parker established herself as a striking new talent at the end of 2016 with her introductory tracks ‘Never Be’, ‘The Cure’ and her more recent debut EP Blue. Drawing comparisons with London Grammar and The xx, many critics praised the tender emotion of her inimitable vocal as well as her ability to craft tracks rich in both ambient atmosphere, haunting heartbreak and carefully nuanced touches.

Now the 24-year-old Bristol-based musician takes another bold step forward with the release of a brand new track ‘Without You’. The single sees Parker’s expressive vocal range exploring a cavalcade of emotions from yearning to spirited independence, while the track’s relentless rhythmic march gains in intensity before exploding into a dramatic crescendo. People will relate their own experiences to its central rallying cry “I’m doing alright with you”, but early line “Won’t take a breath boy if I’m breathing for you” expresses both pain and pride with poetic precision.

“With this video I really wanted to convey a sense of isolation, which is at odds with the theme of strength and independence evident in the lyrics.” Says Parker, adding “Kind of makes you wonder what the actual message is and I like that ambiguity! The variety in the locations and the number of them only furthers that, a sense of being just as lost in a sea of people as you are on your own.”

Directed by Thomas Ralph with Caviar Productions, the video for ‘Without You’ juxtaposes Parker’s femininity with a series of settings traditionally viewed as masculine, and also contrasts her solitude in places rammed with crowds. The video features many London locations including the recent Women’s March in Trafalgar Square, Billingsgate Fish Market, the Wansted Flats Sunday league football pitches and Hampstead Lido. The video’s memorable opening aerial tracking scene echoes the introduction to Francis Ford Coppola’s 1974 classic The Conversation.

Stevie has just finished touring with Mercury Prize-nominated artist C Duncan, and embarks on her own headline tour this February.

Stevie Parker Links: Soundcloud | Facebook | Twitter

Stevie Parker plays The Sunflower Lounge Birmingham on Wed 22nd February 2017, with support from Bryony Williams. Tickets available here.

Watch the video for ‘Without You’ below:

This Week: Gig Roundup 30th Jan – 5th Feb

January 30, 2017 in News

Coming up in Birmingham this week we have The Head and the Heart at the O2 Institute on Monday, following the release of their album Signs of Light. Wednesday sees singer-songwriter Tom Walker play a sold out show at The Sunflower Lounge. And after supporting the likes of Ryan AdamsFather John Misty and BeckKieran Leonard returns with his new band Saint Leonard’s Horses on Saturday at The Sunflower Lounge. Check out the full details below:


The Head And The Heart + Cattle & Cane @ O2 Institute2

The Head And The Heart‘s new release Signs Of Light, recorded in Nashville, crackles with the upbeat, sing-a-long energy of the the band’s finest work. Throughout, the colors are brighter, the electric guitars are louder and the musical touchstones more universal, with nods to classic Fleetwood Mac. Support comes from Cattle & Cane with their finely crafted indie-pop and mesmerising harmonies.

Watch the video for ‘All We Ever Knew’ below:


Tom Walker + Grafton Ash + Ryan Sparrow @ The Sunflower Lounge

Recently signed to Sony’s Relentless RecordsTom Walker was born in Scotland and raised in Manchester on his father’s extensive record collection – drawn to artists like Ray CharlesThe Police and Bob Marley. His song ‘Play Dead’ immediately conjures comparisons with some of the UK’s brightest crossover singer-songwriters such as Finley QuayeHozier, and Paulo Nutini. Support comes from 4 piece pop/folk band Grafton Ash and Birmingham singer-songwriter Ryan Sparrow.

Listen to ‘Play Dead’ below:


Saint Leonard’s Horses + Joseph Hicklin + Jack Cooper And The Offshore @ The Sunflower Lounge

After supporting the likes of Ryan Adams, Father John Misty and Beck, Kieran Leonard returns with his new band Saint Leonard’s Horses. Born out of a visit to Stanley Kubrick’s family estate in St Albans, Hertfordshire, the intention was to harness the creative forces at work in the Kubrick house and record new material as ‘live’ as possible with the five-piece band playing together in the same room, and even lead vocals being laid down live with each track. Support comes from singer-songwriter Joseph Hicklin, and Bob Dylan and Ben Howard inspired Jack Cooper And The Offshore.

Watch the video for ‘Spooky Lover’ below:

Introducing: Saint Leonard’s Horses

January 25, 2017 in News

In the past few years Kieran Leonard has toured the UK and USA supporting and playing shows with Ryan AdamsFather John MistyBob Dylan, The StrokesBeckThe LibertinesBilly Bragg and Wolfmother, to name a few. Then, early last year he was invited to work on music at Stanley Kubrick’s family estate in St Albans, Hertfordshire. The intention was to harness the creative forces at work in the Kubrick house and record new material as ‘live’ as possible with the five-piece band playing together in the same room and even lead vocals being laid down live with each track.

They then further honed their skills and the songs through extensive touring and festival appearances (including GlastonburyReading & LeedsThe Great EscapeSXSWand British Summer Time in Hyde Park). This marks the start of Saint Leonard, a culmination of two years work in search of a new recorded sound, citing the experience of the Kubrick estate, and several bizarre episodes in the isolation of stays on the Yorkshire moors and the Californian desert, as the grounds for this shift in artistic identity.

Debut album Good Luck Everybody is available to pre-order now via Xtra Mile Recordings.

Saint Leonards Horses Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter

Saint Leonard’s Horses play The Sunflower Lounge Birmingham on Sat 4th February 2017, with support from Joseph Hicklin & Jack Cooper and the Offshore. Tickets available here.

Watch the video for ‘Spooky Lover’ below:

Introducing: RedFaces

January 20, 2017 in News

RedFaces are a brand new guitar band snapped up by a major label RCA. With a debut single – the incendiary ‘Kerosene’ – due on February 3, 2017, RedFaces are four lads from Sheffield treading what was once a well-worn path, these days the road less travelled.

The journey started at 2Fly studios in Sheffield, recording demos with Alan Smyth, the man behind the Arctic Monkeys‘ first ventures.

Out of these sessions came the band’s first release ‘Katie Come Home’ in early 2015 – championed by BBC Introducing it also attracted the attention of the London A&R fraternity. An early gig in Sheffield saw representatives from every major label through the door.

RedFaces Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter

Redfaces play The Sunflower Lounge Birmingham on Sun 29th January 2017 as part of Independent Venue Week 2017 #IVW17. Support comes from SLTP, AutoPilot & Spoort. Tickets available here.

Listen to ‘Kerosene’ below:

Exmagician to play The Sunflower Lounge

January 13, 2017 in News

Belfast duo Exmagician released Scan The Blue on Bella Union earlier this year showcasing a heady mix of guitars meeting synths and spiraling threads of psychedelia from the latest musical incarnation of longtime collaborators Danny Todd and James Smith.

As the songwriting partnership behind Cashier No. 9, the band released the David Holmes produced album To The Death Of Fun in 2011 to widespread critical acclaim. Their new venture is propelled by a love of adventurous, psychedelic sounds, apparent from the opening bars of lead track ‘Kiss That Wealth Goodbye’. Steaming in with a filthy riff that’s the product of a guitar and a synth melding together making one sound indecipherable from the other.

After a succession of radio hits in Ireland with ‘Kiss That Wealth Goodbye’, ‘Job Done’ and ‘Bend With The Wind’, exmagican were nominated for the Northern Irish Music Prize, the band spent Summer touring festivals and doing German dates with July Talk.

Exmagician links: Website | Facebook | Twitter

Exmagician play The Sunflower Lounge Birmingham on Wed 25th January 2017 as part of Independent Venue Week #IVW17, with support from Callum Pickard & The Third Look and Jump The Shark. Tickets available here.

Watch the video for ‘Job Done’ below:

The Wytches announce intimate Birmingham show

January 13, 2017 in News

BBC Radio 6 Music’s Steve Lamacq is touring some of the UK’s iconic independent music venues to support the IVW initiative, where he will be stopping off at Birmingham’s own Sunflower Lounge. Steve says that “Now, more than ever, it’s important to support small, grassroots venues around the country, because, while a lot of them continue to thrive, we’ve seen many of them shut down and many still under threat”.

So to celebrate, Heavenly Records’ The Wytches will be bringing their psychedelic rock to The Sunflower Lounge on Tuesday 24th February in support of Independent Venue Week courtesy of independent promoters Surprise You’re Dead Music and Birmingham Promoters. You may have seen them on the road with The CribsBlood Red ShoesPulled Apart By Horses, at the UK’s major festivals, and more recently headlining O2 Institute2. Thanks to IVW you’ll get the chance to see them in one of the UK’s smallest indie music venues for a completely intimate one off show!

“We wanted to shine a light on these great little places, which nurture new talent and act as a meeting place for music fans. I’ve had some of the best moments of musical life in these little venues, watching all kinds of bands, including several who’ve gone on to huge success. But there’s nothing like seeing a group at its most raw and engaging when they’re first starting out, even if they’re only playing to 100 people.” 

The Wytches Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter

The Wytches play The Sunflower Lounge Birmingham on Tues 24th January 2017 as part of Independent Venue Week #IVW17. Tickets available here.

Watch the video for ‘C-Side’ below:

Introducing: Cosmo Pyke

January 12, 2017 in News

Cosmo Pyke (that’s his real name) is an 18-year-old songwriter and multi-instrumentalist from Peckham. Raised on a diet of blues, jazz, hip hop, and neo-soul, he writes warm, lo-fi songs that he describes as “spacey, beautiful, and lazy”.

His songs draw less on other music and more on his everyday experiences growing up in south east London: reading books, going to pubs, playing football, and other simple pleasures in life.

Cosmo Pyke has a lot of strings to his bow. As well as being a singer and multi-instrumentalist, he’s a skateboarder, spray paint artist, and a model — spot him in Frank Ocean’s ’Nikes’ video. It’s not surprising, then, that he doesn’t have a lot of time for sitting online, as he makes clear in the stoner-friendly acoustic pop of his debut single ‘Social Sites’, a song about an ex-girlfriend and social media’s role in a relationship.

After supporting JAWS at their huge headline show at The Rainbow Warehouse back in December, Cosmo now announces his own headline show at The Sunflower Lounge this March.

Cosmo Pyke Links: Soundcloud | Facebook | Twitter

Cosmo Pyke plays The Sunflower Lounge Birmingham on Wed 1st March 2017. Tickets available here.

Watch the video for ‘Social Sites’ below:

Introducing: Man & The Echo

November 25, 2016 in Introducing

Three years on from previous band Cheap Cuts, neither Gaz Roberts or his Warringon bandmates have had much time to ponder their brush with the pop scrapyard. With the name changed and the songs duly written, they’ve signed to James Endeacott’s hugely respected 1965 Records, been invited to play Billy Bragg’s leftfield stage at Glastonbury, enjoyed lots of airplay and had influential BBC DJ Steve Lamacq call Gaz “a great northern storyteller”, comparing him to Jarvis Cocker and their gigs to the first time he saw Pulp.

There is a bit of Sheffield’s finest’s era-defining mix of smart, observational pop and musical glam about Man & The Echo. But there’s also a bit of ABC, The Smiths, the Divine Comedy, Dexys, Super Furry Animals, blue eyed soul, 50s/60s crooning, literary references, social commentary, humour and much more, as they have arrived at a sound that isn’t retro so much as ricocheting through pop’s many decades and landing squarely in the post-Brexit, conflicted, chaotic UK of the here and now.

Man and the Echo Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter

Man & The Echo play The Sunflower Lounge Birmingham on Sun 5th March 2017. Tickets available here.

Watch the video for ‘Operation Margarine’ below: