New Music Friday: We Are Giants

Northampton trio We Are Giants, with the huge sound and quirky style, keep coming up with the goods. Following last years well-received debut album The Empire they are back with…

Northampton trio We Are Giants, with the huge sound and quirky style, keep coming up with the goods. Following last years well-received debut album The Empire they are back with new single ‘Respond’. Time to ch-ch-chat…

How did you guys get together?
We first started in mid-2015, originally connecting through adverts on joinmyband.com. Our first gig was on NYE of that year. We started off as a four-piece playing softer rock and practising in Griffs lounge, but soon found our heavier sound and transitioned into a trio. Alex came on board as a WAGlad [and drummer] last summer. We play together as good friends and because of our passion for writing and playing original rock music.

How would you describe your sound? Who are your main influences?
This is the question that usually throws people off! Our sound is heavy modern rock but with gritty vocals rather than any screaming. That being said….Griff can sing quite beautifully as well. Our influences range from Alexisonfire, old-school Biffy Clyro, Don Broco and Press to Meco and we certainly think that you can hear a little bit of each of those bands in our tunes.

What was the reaction like to The Empire?
Lee’s Nan loved the artwork but not so much the music. Being serious, it’s tough being a small unsigned originals rock band, and unless you’re pumping money into pushing your stuff it’s difficult to get heard. That’s why it’s always fantastic when people grab a CD from us at gigs or stumbling across us on the streaming platforms. BBC Introducing has also played some tracks off of The Empire, which is cool! We’re proud of the songs that we’ve created and recorded together, and if nothing comes from it then at least we’ve had some good times doing it all and have something for our grandkids to listen to [and hate].

Tell us about this new song, ‘Respond’.
‘Respond’ was written by all three of us pretty much as soon as Alex came on board. Griff came up with the riff at 1am when we were all pissed, and we never looked back. We recorded the song at the WAG studio and had a great time adding all of the layers….especially the ukulele in the breakdown! When it was time to release the song, we thought about ideas for a music video and being the lazy bastards we are, we decided to stand in front of a green screen and shoot a one take dancing video…..but it turned out great! It seems that when we run out of ideas we always turn to the comedy, crazy costumes, green screen video approach. We probably did the main video in one take but also created five or six bonus clips that we released before the launch and those probably took the most time because we were laughing so much! Recording and shooting videos is the most fun part of being in a band for us because we get to have a laugh and record whatever idea pops into our heads.

What are your live shows like?
We like to have fun and bring energy to the stage, it’s usually a weekend so why would we want to be all serious and moody? Crowd wise, it’s always hit or miss. We’ve played some absolutely insane gigs, and also played to practically no one on many occasions. Our proudest moment has to be when we were runners up in MK11’s battle of the bands competition, but we won the best bassist and guitarist award. We also got a cool support slot for a CJ Ramone gig from that show.

Are you part of a wider scene in Northamptonshire, playing with like-minded bands? Any favourite bands/venues to play with?
We’ve had the opportunity to play with 100s of bands in 10s of venues in our brief history. We’ve made great friends playing shows in Northants and always enjoy playing at The King Billy, The Roadmender and the cool pubs in Daventry. These days there are a lot of gigs where the majority of the crowd is the bands that are on the line-up, so it’s important to drop the egos, have a beer and enjoy each other’s show.

What has been your favourite band moment of the past year?
Shooting the music video for our next single…coming out soon! The video was soooo much fun to film and we hope that comes across on camera. Stay tuned to our Facebook page for more details soon on that.

What was the last album you bought/streamed?
Lee – Biffy Clyro Balance Not Symmetry
Alex – Press To Meco Here’s To The Fatigue
Griff – Acoda Truth Seeker

What is your burning desire for the band to do in the future? What plans do you have?
We have a new single coming out soon with an awesome video to match. We think that this is possibly our best work to date so we’re excited to release it! After that we’re just going to focus on having a good time being in a band: whether that’s working on new tracks, jamming or recording and shooting video content. We’re not ruling out the odd live show but we live busy lives and the rewards for the time, effort and money that you put into playing shows is slim, but that’s cool….we have a laugh together and do what we want, when we want.

Respond is out now

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It’s A Shoe In: Northants gig guide Aug 21st – Aug 27th

THE GREG COULSON BIG BAND Thursday August 22nd The Charles Bradlaugh, Northampton Northampton’s own king bluesmeister, when he isn’t busy touring the world with Spiritualized, continues to wow us with…

THE GREG COULSON BIG BAND
Thursday August 22nd
The Charles Bradlaugh, Northampton
Northampton’s own king bluesmeister, when he isn’t busy touring the world with Spiritualized, continues to wow us with his own sounds, as heard on last year’s debut album, What’s New?.  He presents his big band with the big sound for the first time in 2019 tonight. Doors 8pm, £10 tickets

AUGUST ROCK FESTIVAL 2019
Thursday August 22nd – Monday August 26th
The King Billy, Northampton
No creative juice spared with that title, the second of the Billy’s 2019 garden extravaganza’s runs over five nights!  You get ODS SAXON, DIRTY DEEDS, BURNT OUT WRECK, THE BIG DIRTY, STILL REMAINS UK, SILVER STEREO , EL BRONSON, STAR LIZZY, DREAM DROP, WISHING WOLF, SAFEST SPACES, STANDING LIKE STATUES, CRAWLSPACES, CHARLIE TARRY & THE OUTLAWS, MOLLY KARLOFF, and more TBC. Thursday and Friday are free entry, Saturday to Monday is £5 on the door. A ticket for 3 days is £10.

THE PIG & APPLESTOCK FESTIVAL
Friday August 23rd – Sunday August 25th
Next to Naseby Reservoir
The last big weekend of the year for festivals in 2019, and this is a firm favourite on the calendar. Music is the main focus of the festival, so this year you get Friday delights from The Evil Usses, The Anteloids, The Yes Mess, Diego Brown & The Good Fairy, and Chris Duckett. The evening finishes with a late night Lay It Down special hosted by Troopz. Saturday brings Benny & The Jengo Massive, Dubi Dolczek, Zayk, Laetitia Sadier [ex-Stereolab], [sane], A Noble Ghost, Slide Machine, Ben Jennings, and James Grady. Finally the Sunday sees C Joynes, Nim Chimpsky, Wax Myrtle’s Special Structure, Nick Jonah Davis, Ji & The Rainbirds, and Nina Harries perform. Day tickets are £15 [Fri and Sun] or £20 [Sat], or £30 for a weekend camping ticket. See all the info here

KAYA UMBRELLA FAIR WORLD MUSIC WEEKENDER
Saturday August 24th – Monday August 26th
The Umbrella Fair, Northampton
Kaya breaks down the borders within the Arts and Music and celebrates World Music, Diversity, Community and Family. Showcasing many world music artists over three days, including Kiziah & The Kings, Thabani & The African All Stars, The Repro Jam Squad, Drones Club, and Jono & The Uke DealersTickets are £25 for the weekend, £50 for a family ticket, or £5 per child over six.

ACOUSTIC WEEKENDER
Saturday August 24th – Monday August 26th
The Sun Inn, Northampton
A Ni Ni Sessions hosted event over three days. Performances from Hannah Faulkner, Nigel Lewis, Rebecca Ryan, Dem urban foxes, Marieke Vink, ‪Andy Clarke, Ant Richards‬, Cameron Grace‬, Harrison Coleman, The Laura Baker Band‬, George Holmes, Amii Dawes, Way Bak Then, Break‬, Just Mike, Tom & Sophie‬, J D Blues , Uncovered‬, Tim Jon Brophy, Scott Walters, Lew Bear, Dan Hughes, and Terry Slade. From lunchtime each day, free entry

PLANETMAN + GOVERNOR TIGGY & THE ROOTS LAB BAND
Saturday August 24th
The Lab, Northampton
Big celebration and iration. Conscious reggae star Tiggy will be joining the roots reggae Londoner. Doors 8pm, £5 entry [£4 for members]

MIRANDA LEE RICHARDS + JOE WOOLEY
Saturday August 24th
The Lamplighter, Northampton
MLR was our first ever gig review two years ago, so we’re excited she returns from Los Angeles to perform upstairs at the Lamp. Support from her occasional folkie collaborator and talented NN mainstay. Music from 8.30pm, £7.50 entry

SHIRE FEST
Saturday August 24th
The Shire Horse, Corby
A great line-up of local musicians: Ethan Kenna, The 182s, Veins, Deeper Cut, Rock Follicles and Kushty. From 1.30pm, free entry

EMPYRE + DIG LAZARUS + JD BLUES
Saturday August 24th
The Red Lion, Brackley
The Self-Aware rockists continue their album campaign trail by returning to a favourite haunt, and are joined by the Nuneaton riffy trio, plus the Northants acoustic blues duo. Music from 8.30pm, free entry

PROJECT NOISE + TAKE REFUGE
Saturday August 24th
Raff’s Bar, Wellingborough
Special co-headline show from the two MK metal outfits. Doors 7pm, £5 tickets

RAVENFEST 19
Sunday August 25th
The Raven Hotel, Corby
An outdoor event, featuring Machines, The T100s, Prisoner, James Watt & The Avenues, and The Rising Suns. Doors midday. All proceeds go to Prostaid.

THE TOUCH
Sunday August 25th
The Prince Of Wales, Kettering
In superhero costumes no less! Stick around after the jam to watch their rock moves. Doors 4pm, free entry

 

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Spiral Archive celebrates 20 years of making Northampton better

This Saturday is a day to celebrate a Northampton music institution. Spiral Archive has been selling records and showcasing local bands for a whole 20 years now. In a world…

This Saturday is a day to celebrate a Northampton music institution. Spiral Archive has been selling records and showcasing local bands for a whole 20 years now.

In a world in which vinyl has taken a back seat to first CDs, and latterly streaming, that’s nothing short of miraculous. Inside an industrial-looking building on St. Michael’s Road lies approximately 50,000 items for sale.  Seriously. New and old music-related records, CDs, tapes, DVDs, books, t-shirts, mugs, badges, it’s all there. The man to thank? Alex Novak of course. He’s been at the helm since the very beginning, the first shop location on Wellington Road.

This Saturday August 25th you can join the celebrations two-fold

1. Spiral Archive the shop offers a one-day half-price sale on ALL STOCK. The shop opens at 11am for that.

2. Alex Novak plus guests will have a DJ party upstairs in the function room at The Charles Bradlaugh [1 Earl St] from 10pm to 3am, and it’s free entry.

SPIRAL ARCHIVE RECORDS 1999-2019. The record shop was opened in 1999 by Alex Novak (of The Venus Fly Trap fame) as an alternative to the mainstream stores. It is one of the few independent record shops left in the area.
Open WED-FRI 11-4pm/SAT 11-5pm [tel.07974 885450]
Or alternatively online; stores.ebay.co.uk/spiralarchiverecords
The shop stocks INDIE, GOTH, ELECTRONIC, INDUSTRIAL, ROCK, METAL, PSYCHEDELIC, PUNK, NEW WAVE, SKA, MOD, FUNK, SOUL, REGGAE, PSYCHOBILLY, ROCK N ROLL, SOUNDTRACKS and more.

To commemorate this auspicious milestone Peter Dennis caught up with proprietor Alex for a chat.

SPIRAL ARCHIVE on Facebook

 

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New Music Friday: Rolling Thunder

West Northampton outfit Rolling Thunder are the fresh-faced assassins come to kick in your ears on the grubby indie dancefloors of 2019 and beyond. Seemingly fully-formed already, New Boots asked…

West Northampton outfit Rolling Thunder are the fresh-faced assassins come to kick in your ears on the grubby indie dancefloors of 2019 and beyond. Seemingly fully-formed already, New Boots asked singer Charlie Smith about how they got here and how music gives them their kicks.

How did you guys get together?
The band was formed in a history class at school in 2015 by Ryan and myself as a bit of a joke. No one took us seriously because only Ryan could play an instrument. We were studying the Vietnam War at the time and that’s where the name came from. We were just a bit obsessed with the idea of being in a band and thought it would be pretty cool, so we have just gone from there really. Joe and Harry were also proper keen to be in a band despite no music background or experience at all, so they learned their instruments from scratch by themselves – which again was another reason I think people didn’t take us very seriously. We’ve only really called ourselves a proper band since 2018 when we started doing local open mics. Harry asked his cousin Josh to drum for us when we got some gigs and has recently become a fully fledged member of the band. He was the missing piece and brings so much experience and level headedness. He holds everything together when the rest of us are getting a bit overexcited and making mistakes and stuff.

How would you describe your sound?
Definitely heavily guitar-driven. The sound is quite varied though, and there’s all sorts coming from different decades. Predominantly like an indie 80’s jangle, a more raw 90’s rock ‘n’ roll sound and then some early 00’s indie. What’s interesting is that when people try describing our sound we get completely different responses. We’ve had comparisons to all sorts, from Mod to post-punk to Britpop.

Who are your main influences in music?
The likes of Oasis, Kings of Leon and The Strokes influence the songwriting and guitars. The guitars are also influenced by Harry’s love of early Arctic Monkeys and obsession with Interpol. Joe on the bass idolises Peter Hook [Joy Division/New Order] and Bruce Foxton [The Jam], so there’s definitely some older new wave and post punk vibes there. Josh on the drums is influenced by Radiohead and Counting Crows, which is different again, and then my main influences in terms of vocals are people like Bernard Sumner [New Order], David Byrne [Talking Heads] and Damon Albarn [Blur].

What was the reaction like to the first single, ‘Break In At The Nachtwinkel’?
It’s been mental; we were completely taken aback by the positive response we got. People had only ever heard us live, so we weren’t sure how they’d take to the studio version of the track. But they seem to love it, and it means so much to us. We were on holiday the night it came out and so things got pretty silly. We were just so overwhelmed that something we had made was now out and available on the same platforms we all get our favourite music from, it was unreal. Josh has been in lots of other local bands and said he’s never seen such a quick online uptake of a track, so that seems really promising and gives us the confidence we need.

Tell us about this new one, ‘John Doe’.
At the time Ryan was struggling to write any songs, he wanted to try and write in a different way. He was listening to a lot of Paul Weller and the Kinks so he wanted to write a song in a more observational way. He looked at some of his neighbours and saw how well kept their gardens were and how clean their cars were, and that gave him the idea of writing a song based on people we’ve seen out in Northampton and Nottingham [our uni location]. The idea of a bloke who has all these outward possessions and a seemingly perfect life, but on the inside their life is a bit of a mess. We’re not saying his neighbours are actually like that either, before they try and kick his door down.
From this general idea the whole track has grown into what I suppose you could call almost a concept piece with the artwork, promotional pictures etc…all elaborating on the lyrics and initial idea. Things escalated when I even wore John Doe’s tattered suit and tie on stage. Sound wise it’s pretty big: definitely heavier than ‘Break In At The Nachtwinkel’, with a more rock ‘n’ roll vibe. Especially with the lyrics and vocal delivery the whole track has a lot more attitude. It also has a groovy bass line, driving drums and the usual big guitars. The recording of it was a good laugh, and the overall sound is massive thanks to the great work of Jon Martin at Stalker Studios.

Describe your live show in five words?
Energetic, Entertaining, Endearing, Exciting and Sweaty.

Are you part of a wider scene in Northamptonshire?
We’re definitely becoming more and more integrated, our first gig in town was supporting The Keepers and we’ve supported them again since. They’re really good guys and we’re big fans of them. We recently played at TwinFest which was an awesome experience, and it meant we got to meet a lot of the other bands from Northampton and we got a really good reception which was cool. The more we play the more connected we feel which is really promising, so hopefully the scene will continue to reveal itself to us or grow around us. In terms of venues Peggotty’s Lounge in Towcester is our Cavern Club; an awesome place for us to do our own thing, as its proper local, so we get silly.

What has been your favourite band moment of the past year?
Playing live is our favourite thing, the best reception we’ve had was at a local gig at Peggotty’s Lounge. The place was totally packed and there was mosh-pits and pints going everywhere. To have people singing and screaming our own words back to us was really special. We loved every second of it.

What was the last album you bought/streamed?
Charlie: It was a 12” single rather than an album – ‘Life During Wartime’ by Talking Heads
Ryan: Dogrel by Fontaines D.C.
Harry: Part 1: Everything Not Saved Will Be Lost by Foals
Joel: Joy as an Act of Resistance by Idles
Josh: The Fall of Hobo Johnson by Hobo Johnson

What is your burning desire for the band to do in the future? What plans do you have?
The ambition is just to be as big as possible. Ideally we want to be on tour supporting bands and playing festivals as soon as possible. Hopefully in the not too distant future a gig at the Roadmender will be on the cards. An ultimate dream of ours would to be become proper successful and do a big homecoming gig either at Sixfield’s Stadium or Franklins Gardens. As well as big live gigs we want to push ourselves technically and develop the songwriting. Even though we think the current songs are pretty awesome we’ve only just got going and think it’s just the tip of the iceberg.

‘John Doe’ is out there now on the usual digital shelves

 

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ExP + DJ O.P.1 live review and interview

ExP’s ‘Fully Fledged Fraud’ Album Release Tour, featuring DJ O.P.1 Friday August 9th The Garibaldi Hotel, Northampton Friday night and myself and Bernie Beirne are heading down to the Gari…

ExP’s ‘Fully Fledged Fraud’ Album Release Tour, featuring DJ O.P.1
Friday August 9th
The Garibaldi Hotel, Northampton

Friday night and myself and Bernie Beirne are heading down to the Gari to catch one of the usual faces, DJ O.P.1. A Northamptonshire DJ with exquisite blends of hiphop, funk, jazz, rock, jungle, dnb, he’s always guaranteed to put on a dancefloor filling night of fantastic tunes. Although on this night, he has a rather special treat in store…
O.P.1 has teamed up with Yorkshire’s finest Rapper ExP, to be his Jazzy Jeff on the latest album Fully Fledged Fraud. And tonight, they bring their ‘tiny’ tour to Northampton. Starting in Leeds last night, the tour stops at The Garibaldi Hotel for one night only before they move down south to the Old Blue Last in Shoreditch.

Ben “ExP” Goodwin draws on influences for his current style of rap from classic old skool hiphop artists such as De La Soul, Jurassic 5, Tribe Called Quest. As he says, “people who know how to have fun on stage and make joyful music”. And having fun on stage is one thing that ExP is really good at, drawing in the crowd with his lyric boards and audience participation. So, whether you know his tracks or not, you find yourself joining in with the chorus of “we don’t do that” and “work is so shit”. Plus, you are bound to recognise some the of the classic songs which ExP has skilfully sampled; from the Ratpack to Bill Withers and Sly & the Family Stone.

ExP has a large following based in Corby from his group Flame Griller, so it was great to see the Corby crowd trek across county and turn up to support their tour.

New Boots had a chat with Ben and Robin before the show began..
The album is called Fully Fledged Fraud, so what’s the concept behind this album. Are you the Fully-Fledged Fraud?
Ben: Yeah exactly, as is everyone. That was kind of the point of it. The last album had tracks that I could name the album after in the end, but this is one is a bit more of a summary of everything. I think the summary of it was that everyone is a fraud, everyone is pretending to do what they do, even if they are doing it to a good level. So, you look at yourself and say I am doing this but if I told them how rubbish I really am…

Ok, I get it. A good example of this is Michelle Obama who talks about imposter syndrome?
Yeah, it’s like when people just feel they aren’t right, and apparently Penelope Cruz too. With every film she does she thinks “I shouldn’t be doing this. I’m a complete fraud, I’m not a real actress”, thoughts like this. This is a major thing for people.

Does this mean that you don’t feel like a real rapper?
Well that and many other things. It’s a very strange thing to think of yourself as a rapper in the first place, especially being white and from Yorkshire! You know and being very grumbly. The content is very grumbly and non-rap in its own way, but it is also about being a fraud in my work life, my married life, everything and anything really.

So, you are gigging tonight at The Garibaldi Hotel, where slowthai recently held his album launch as well. What are your thoughts on the current British hip-hop scene?
The British hip-hop scene is cool and busier the further south you get! So it’s great as you get into London but its also busy under London with Brighton and Bristol over the way. Its good, its bubbling, it has its own thing. But hip-hop in itself is such a big word that it incapsulates so much stuff. You can include trap and grime in that, and if you do it’s as buzzing as it’s ever been.

So, if you were to sub- genre yourself under hip-hop, what genre would you say you are?
Haaa! Well the cool thing now is Mumble Rap! So, I have coined ‘Grumble Rap’ because I’m just having a grumble man.. when you start sub-genre’ing…what I’m doing and its like boom bop and classic hip-hop.

What’s it like working with O.P.1?
This is my third gig ever working with O.P.1 and mate it is incredible. He is the best DJ I have ever worked with by a long shot. He knows his stuff man, he’s the best.

Some of your lyrics are just downright hilarious. Do you spend time trying to craft the joke or does that just happen naturally?
No! there is nothing worse then trying to be funny and I don’t think that I am funny. Its just observations, so if something pisses me off from time to time, I will write it down on my phone and I’ll put that into something. Somethings write themselves really quick and something things take ages to craft.

The new album got a promotional tweet from Frankie Boyle! How did that happen?
It was years ago when people realised that he was into hip-hop and he was sharing tweets about the music that he liked. So, a member of Flame Griller messaged him out of the blue and said we do this music and he really got into it. Since then he has followed us, he’s supportive of us and we can shoot him a message and he will promote our music. Its very, very cool. Romesh Ranganathan as well! Its great to have that boost.

So, London tomorrow, then what’s next for you?
Then I have a small gig on the 17th August – Autopot Summer Social then literally nothing. Another Flame Griller gig in October but nothing else. Ever since putting the album out in July I’ve been running around trying to get everything out, trying to talk to everyone so I think once it gets to mid to late August I can try to start promoting the album and get new people to listen and share. Word of mouth is the most important thing for me. Then hopefully there will be another album by 2022.

Over to you O.P.1 – how did this collab come about?
I was DJing at a festival in Corby last September and I was DJing for a local group and a few other MCs on the night. ExP came down, saw me smashing it [as usual!] and he said we need to work together. He asked me to do some scratches on a track, I threw some ideas together, did the cuts and he liked it and went with it. So that’s on the new album, a track called “High Horse”.
He then asked me to do the southern gigs, but it ended up me being his DJ full time now. The video should be out in a couple of months. I don’t know how much I can say, its an animated video. It looks pretty dope from what he sent me. Check out his videos on YouTube, as they are all proper.
I think we both have the same work ethic, the same ideas and the same background in hip-hop so it just kind of worked out really well. We will definitely be doing some more stuff together in the future, for sure.

Except for this project, what else are you up to?
I have regular nights at the Garibaldi Hotel, The Pomfret and the Charles Bradlaugh. I have a few festivals coming up and there are a few local artists I will be working with. You can keep up to date from my Facebook page “DJ O.P.1”

Lisa Eversden

Fully Fledged Fraud is available online here

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Album review: Krysthla

KRYSTHLA Worldwide Negative [PHD] Formed in 2013 Wellingborough’s Krysthla have been carving out their own niche in the realm of extreme metal. Their first album A War of Souls dropped…

KRYSTHLA
Worldwide Negative [PHD]

Formed in 2013 Wellingborough’s Krysthla have been carving out their own niche in the realm of extreme metal. Their first album A War of Souls dropped in 2015 and was followed in 2017 by the critically acclaimed Peace in Our Time. Their third full length Worldwide Negative comes hot on the heels of a triumphant main stage appearance at this years Bloodstock Open Air festival, and this record is the sound of a band confidently reaching maturity and standing on the verge of world domination.

By way of an introduction opening salvo ‘Negative’ is the perfect calling card. Beginning with a brief, cascading guitar motif that gently reels in the listener, it creates a moment of serenity that means when Krysthla arrive as a band they hit with the force of a hurricane: a blast beat that’s overlaid with a tortured scream breaks the still, and heralds a musical maelstrom. The guitar motif recurs throughout as Liam Turland’s powerhouse drumming dictates the pace and gives proceedings a groove metal feel as the group constantly shift gears and effortlessly switch tempos. The incendury ‘Negative’ would make a great set opener for Krysthla’s live show, and it seems destined to ignite mosh pits wherever they play. Next track ‘Reawaken’ is bookended between two punishing riffs, and the mid section evidences an intelligent use of light and shade as clean vocals juxtapose the more guttural – while the intricate guitar lines highlight the hammer blow riffs.

‘Grief is New Love’ has a real industrial, surgical feel, kinda like Fear Factory on amphetamine, the drums fire like pistons while the guitars capture the cold, brittle atmospherics of black metal. Next cut, and lead single, ‘Zero Sum Game’ continues in a similar vein, relentless without being repetitious. Krysthla have a modus operandi similar to Killing Joke, but whereas the Joke use the same riff as a battering ram Krysthla have more in their arsenal and attack your senses from different angles. Guitarist Neil Hudson also produced Worldwide Negative and his wizardry unobtrusively brings different instrumentation to the fore at various junctures, and subtly repositions the listeners perspective. Despite the band drawing on different strands of extreme metal this album has a unified feel. That’s partly due to the production, but primarily it’s the introspective lyrics that deal with alienation and the impact of our actions on ourselves and the planet. Linking all the songs thematically gives Worldwide Negative the feel of a concept album, and ensures it hangs together as a cohesive whole.

‘White Castles’ is like facing an artillery barrage as vocalist Adi Mayes tackles his lyrics with hardcore fury and sings with indignation. However the band aren’t all about pure bludgeon, as some nice guitar work provides brief respite; the band lulling us into a false sense of security before we’re attacked sonically once more. On ‘Psalm of Heartlessness’ the band have created a song that simply sounds huge and towers over the listener – threatening with a monolithic enormity. Penultimate track ‘Aurea Mediocritas’ swirls in a musical tempest with sinister guitar flourishes that suggests we’ve arrived at a dystopian future. Befitting of an album closer ‘The Gift’ is truly epic and neatly pulls all the bands influences together. It begins by thrashing like Metallica’s ‘Battery’, before undergoing a transmogrification and then sinking like Immortal’s ‘Beyond the North Waves’ which ensures the album ends of a rather ominous tone.

Artists often speak of the ‘difficult third album’ but obviously Krysthla haven’t had that problem. By refining their sound and playing to their strengths they’ve produced an album in Worldwide Negative that could propel them into metals top tier.

Peter Dennis

Worldwide Negative is out on Friday. Pre-order here

Feature Photo credit: Amplified Gig Photography

 
 
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New Music Friday: Props

It’s good when the music scene surprises you. Wellingborough’s idiosyncratic Props popped up out of nowhere earlier this year. Off-kilter lo-fi digital pop-psych might cover it as a description, with…

It’s good when the music scene surprises you. Wellingborough’s idiosyncratic Props popped up out of nowhere earlier this year. Off-kilter lo-fi digital pop-psych might cover it as a description, with various reference points from the 80s, 90s, and 00s thrown in the mix. It’s great that this is where music can go in 2019, and still sound gloriously fresh.

Curiosity got the better of New Boots, so we got the keyboard working for an interview…

Hello Props. Who are you, and where are you based?
I’m Mark. I’m in and out of London a lot nowadays, but most of my music is still made in my old bedroom at my mum and dad’s house in Wellingborough. There’s something nostalgic and comfortable about being there which makes being imaginative and experimental easy – and they don’t mind me making noise too much…

How/why/what/when did you get this project together?
This should have happened years ago but I think laziness, ironically, had a positive part to play. I’d write an idea for a tune and then just abandon it, because I thought I had something better to do. But then I gradually started stitching the good bits together and decided it sounded okay!

How would you describe your sound? Who do you feel are your main influences?
Weird alternative psych pop I guess. Odd sounds, cheerful melodies, sarcastic and usually pessimistic lyrics. When I was younger, classic US emo-pop was my jam, which I think influences my desire to find a killer hook. Nowadays my Spotify playlist covers everything from new indie bangers to weird new jazz… My new favourite artist is Hobo Johnson. He’s so fun.

What was the reaction to those two song releases earlier in 2019 [‘Wired’ and ‘House on Fire’]?
Considering I did all the production/artwork/mixing etc. myself and the fact that hardly anyone I know is aware that I’ve been releasing songs, it’s been quite good!

Tell us everything about this new one, ‘You Don’t Care’.
This one’s only been in the pipeline for about a year and a half [everything else is way older]. It’s pretty miserable, political and a bit stupid. When I wrote it, I’d just come across the band Superorganism and I accidentally (on purpose) copied their kind of trippy and colourful production style.

Any plans for live shows?
Eventually. I’ve only got so many limbs, so I’m working out how I can play my stuff live. And obviously I don’t want to be employing musicians, because I’m skint enough as it is!

Do you identify with a wider musical scene in Northamptonshire? Any favourites?
I’m a self confessed bedroom musician at the moment, but Slowthai is absolutely killing it. Such a vibe for the times.

What has been your favourite Props moment of the past year?
I’ve been sitting on these tunes for a while, pretty nervous about putting anything with my voice on into the world. Getting some pretty positive industry responses has been a boost…

What was the last album you bought/streamed?
I’m really good at discovering stuff that other people have known about for years and getting hooked on it. So Frank Turner Positive Songs For Negative People.

What is your burning desire to do in the future? What plans do you have?
I’ve always wanted to put an album of my own stuff out. I’m about half way there…

You Don’t Care is out now via the usual digital spots

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New Music Friday: Robyn Wilson

Northampton singer Robyn Wilson has been a mercurial talent from a young age. Now a young adult she embarks on the next stage of her burgeoning career with breezy new…

Northampton singer Robyn Wilson has been a mercurial talent from a young age. Now a young adult she embarks on the next stage of her burgeoning career with breezy new summer single ‘Hotel Room’. Interview time then!

You broke ‪through at 16‬ with your debut EP. When did you first pick up an instrument and began writing songs, and how did it get from there to that first release?
I’ve loved music for as long as I can remember, I would always be singing along to a bit of Taylor Swift or Miley Cyrus. If I’m honest, they are the artists that inspired me to learn the guitar at the age of about 12. After getting the guitar I would learn covers but I always preferred messing about with my own stuff, it was so much easier because I could just mess up and say it was intentional. One day the messing up turned into whole songs.

How would you describe your sound? Who are your main influences in music do you feel?
I listen to a lot of different styles of music and have a lot of favourite artists, but I wouldn’t necessarily say that there is any single style or artist that has influenced my sound. Some people say I sound ‘poppy’, some people have even said I sound a bit country. But I just sing whatever comes out.

Tell us everything about this dreamy new single, ‘Hotel Room’. It’s about the events of your travels…
I wrote and recorded Hotel Room in 2016 after a holiday in Mexico. I was 16 and really fancied a guy at our resort. I put the recording online and people started listening, it was just for fun really. But then I was contacted by somebody who heard it and said he could help me release it properly as a single! Shout out to Matt! We re-recorded it and and also have plans to record more. Following this I’m going to record an album, so what started as a stupid crush turned into this incredible experience and new journey.

Have you played live much? More plans to do so?
I’ve played at open mics and small festivals and venues since the age of about 13, with the occasional bigger gig. However since my focus has been on recording the single I haven’t been around as much. I definitely plan on gigging a lot more after summer, and hopefully it will include Northampton and other areas too.

What’s been your experience of the Northamptonshire music scene so far? Any favourite people/act/venues etc you wanna give a shout out to?
Everybody involved in the Northampton music scene is so supportive and friendly, it feels like you belong to a very special club and everybody supports and follows each other. There are some great venues, my favourite was performing on the main stage at The Roadmender. To grace the same stage as some absolute legends such as Arctic Monkeys, Coldplay and Oasis was amazing! It was an event called The Y Factor, where local artists performed and we managed to get the venue full, it was awesome … I wish they still did that.

You seem to be travelling a lot. How has it been, experiencing different cultures? Has it influenced your sound at all do you think?
I love travelling and it’s always been a passion and ambition of mine – so many places on my bucket list! At the moment I’m travelling around Eastern USA with no firm plan apart from I need to come home by September 😂. It’s most definitely given me lots of inspiration for new songs, lyrics are buzzing around my head. I’m soaking up the vibe ready to bring home and tell my stories via some new songs. I feel like my songs are personal diary entries ….apart from I share them with everyone!

What has been your favourite artistic moment of the past year?
I’ve had lots of great artistic moments, they don’t come every day but when they do it’s like a little boost to let me know that I should carry on on this path. Things like getting a random message from somebody you have admired and followed for years, a musician or songwriter. A random follow on social media or an inbox from somebody telling you they love your music.
For years I’ve been singing my own songs in front of small crowds, big crowds and sometimes no crowd. Sometimes people will listen and sometimes they talk over me – I’m sure every singer-songwriter knows this feeling. What has been the most amazing thing is with ‘Hotel Room’, people are actually singing along – they know the lyrics and it feels fantastic! 😊 I can’t describe how it feels when I play the song and the whole audience starts dancing and singing at the top of their voices, it’s kind of euphoric 🤪

What was the last album you bought/streamed?
Ed Sheehan, it would be rude not to!

What is your burning desire to do in the future? What plans do you have?
If I can carry on singing and writing music in the future then I’ll be happy, and if I could make a living off it then I’d be ecstatic! So if all my dreams could come true I would carry on expressing myself via music, and people would enjoy listening to it. And I need to travel the rest of the world too obviously 😂

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Twinfest 2019: The Review

TWINFEST July 25th – July 28th 2019 Northampton, various venues THURSDAY, THE LAB The weekend starts early at Twinfest, the annual hootenanny / shindig that celebrates all that is good…

TWINFEST
July 25th – July 28th 2019
Northampton, various venues

THURSDAY, THE LAB
The weekend starts early at Twinfest, the annual hootenanny / shindig that celebrates all that is good about the music scenes of Marburg, Poitiers and Northampton. Tonight is special in that we get just the German and French acts, and it’s Oclaire‘s honour to kick us off. Before we get to the amiable German fella, can New Boots just point out that it is literally a sauna-type atmosphere in here tonight, as befits the hottest day of the year. If you didn’t go we will simply say: we suffer so you don’t have to. Not that we really did, what with what’s happening on stage. Oclaire is a man who frenetically strums his acoustic guitar, and sings his heart out. Playing songs from his recent sophomore album There Is More, his songs are open like gaping wounds, a space for him to pour his jumblebox of emotions through a redemptive filter and find some solutions to share with us.  We are blessed to hear them.

From solo to duo, and French pair The Aries. Jeanne Casseron and Chloé Bonnet are your chanson for the evening, as they give off sweet and unassuming vibes. They sing solely in French, so goodness knows what the songs are actually about, but one would hazard a guess they are as charming in word as they are in voice. A nifty version of the Beatles classic ‘Across The Universe’ is the icing on the cake.

Cressy Jaw are your solidarity brothers, a trio who take on social and environmental subjects and pull no punches, Reggae-type songs, the rest of the tracks developed into a wild mixture of punk, grunge and blues. Their tight songs switch between reggae-rock and RATM-style alt-rock noise. Their reggaegrungepunk works surprisingly well. 

By the time Bazouka Groove Club unleash their primal rock’n’roll the Lab is producing casualties, and standing outside and listening to the music is becoming a real survival option. Luckily there’s enough punters around for our German friends to work their magic, and work the crowd. Theirs is a modern alt-rock sound mixed up with more of a noughties pop-punk spirit. Singer Basti took his top off [it was definitely a night for that], people moshed until they, literally and figuratively, dropped: it was one of those instantly memorable nights.

It would have been easy to have gone home now satisfied. Bazouka have absolutely destroyed all listening, and the body count is still rising alongside the steam. Yet Full Fiction still have something in their locker to make you reconsider any premature evaluations. The slightly bashful French trio have got some musical chops, as they unleash their slightlydelic punk rock that gets heads nodding furiously, even without anyone knowing the songs. FF felt like the awe-inspiring bonus album track you were not expecting. Tonight the taxi ride home was very, very beatific.

FRIDAY, THE LAMPLIGHTER
The Vincent Vega Band start off proceedings at the Lamplighter in suitably sharp and sophisticated style. Drummer-less and acoustic they are on fine laid back form. Tonight, the band’s sparse, stripped back instrumentation leaves plenty of room for their lyrics, reminiscent of a lo-fi Scott Walker, to shine. Their songs play out like snippets of kitchen sink dramas; held together by moody bass lines and decorated with pretty viola passages. ‘Claude’ and ‘Fireflies’ are particularly well-received moments in a superb opening set. ‘Tout royale pas de fromage’, as they might say in Paris.

Following, in the spirit of these events, with something completely different are Krankhead, aka Mio Flux & Patchy, The Rockstar. Their party-starting hip-hop gets the crowd well warmed up, starting football chants as well as a one-fingered salute to the new prime minister that is much appreciated by the Twinfest crowd.

Upstairs at the Lamplighter, with its fireplace and atmospheric lighting, it feels more like a classy house party; a setting that fits quirky folk-pop duo The Aires quite well. The first of the acts from Poitiers tonight, they instantly win over the Northampton audience. Songs sung in a language the audience may be unfamiliar with are very much dependant on the strength of the performance, but this pair have a wonderfully expressive stage presence and vocal harmonies that cross any language borders.

By the time those watching The Aires get downstairs quite the crowd has amassed for local boys The Barratts, whose mid-evening set showcases why they are quickly becoming one of the towns biggest acts. Punchy indie rock with stinging guitar solos and an assured presence marks them as a force to be reckoned with. By the second song things are already getting rowdy at the front, and your left with the impression that the band are destined for bigger venues than here. The band closed with ‘Lights Out In London’ leaving the audience howling for an encore, but it was already time for the next act to start upstairs.

Oclaire, one of the musicians from Marburg, is up[stairs] next. An acoustic singer-songwriter with a punk spirit and a big heart, he talks openly about the mental health issues that he’s dealt with as he sings about learning to be positive. Throughout the set he drinks from a cup of green tea due to the bad throat he developed on the plane over, and apologises. But his voice is in no way hindered, and he storms through his set with a bit of audience participation.

Back downstairs for the second of tonight’s German acts and Cressy Jaw keep the night pumping with their mix of reggae, punk and bluesy rock. While the audience had thinned a bit since The Barratts, by the end of the set the room had filled up again and there was quite a bit of dancing down at the front. The band’s final song tuned into an extended jam session, with each member of the three-piece getting a spotlight and inviting the audience to join in.

The final act on tonight are Full Fiction, from Poitiers, who pretty much level The Lamplighter with their full-throttle rock and roll. The songs are largely instrumental, with some occasional screamed vocals, but the draw here is the face-melting guitar playing and raw power of the band as a whole. Partway through the set a pit opens up at the front, the front man leaping over the monitor, guitar in hand to shred amongst the audience. The set comes towards its close with the him dropping his guitar on the floor and kneeling over it, attacking it to coax out all manner of sounds. A powerful end to a great night of music from the three cities.

FRIDAY, THE GARIBALDI HOTEL
At 26°, The Garibaldi resembled a blazing inferno, though, the topic of conversation was how it was not as hot as the Lab the day before, when temperatures had reached 37°. The newly formed Joe B. Humbled & His Band opened proceedings with their debut performance, fronted by Joe Martin on guitar and vocals [also known for GOGO LOCO and previously The Mobbs], and joined by his brother Jon Martin on bass and Alex George on drums. The band performed previously-released tracks ‘The Straight & Narrow’ and ‘To Be True’ with some new numbers, such as, ‘Why Did You Kiss Me’ and the never heard before track, ‘Bloodshot Eyes’. With less jumping around, this is Joe’s opportunity for more singing. The new solo venture stays true to Joe’s blues and rock’n’roll influences, with an added essence of some soul. Their admirable cover of Alabama Shakes ‘I Don’t Wanna Fight’ gave severe evidence to said soul influence. With a live performance that was true to the record, Joe B. Humbled are a musical treat with lush, panoramic tones reminiscent of influences from the likes of The Doors and Buddy Holly.

“Are we all drinking ir-responsibly?”, asked Jordan Jones, as he took to the stage. The Keepers were up next with two new faces to the indie-mod quartet. Introducing Charlie Pinnacle and Jack Isaacs to the mix, The Keepers still delivered a tight knit performance. The setlist included some older anthems such as ‘Here Comes The Spring’ and ‘You’re All I Need’, as well as, still-to-be-released ‘Velvet Hands’. Opening with the lines “Don’t take me to the movies, take me to a cemetery,” the song is influenced by the line from beatnik poet, Gregory Corso’s ‘Marriage’. A riotous performance of ‘Cocaine Champagne’ from frontman Jones had the crowd’s eating out of the palm of his hand, as he used the bar as an extension of the stage, crouched below the hanging industrial lighting.

Next on the bill were the night’s hosts, Deaf Trap, marked by Tom Wright’s signature suit and Matt’s ever-impressive beard, they performed before a moshing crowd, whilst meanwhile others melted and fanned each other on the outskirts. The set included firm favourites ‘Guillotine’, ‘Fate Thinks’ and ‘Dirty Echoes’, as well as upcoming single ‘Face’.

Bazouka Groove Club headlined the evening. The conscious-rap group performed in their native tongue, to the remaining survivors of the room, headbanging until the very last note, the audience demanding an encore which was gratefully received.

SATURDAY, THE POMRFET ARMS
In true summer fashion the rains come in early on Saturday and by the time the Saturday leg of Twinfest is open the picturesque beer garden on The Pomfret resembles an overgrown water feature. But the show goes on, and in the barn Laughing Man Marsh kick things off with Crowded House’s ‘Don’t Dream It’s Over’, and it definitely isn’t. The band played a solid set of blues-rock with a mix of originals and covers, ending in a storming cover of ‘The Chain’, assisted by two of the festival’s organisers on vocals.

Due to the delays in starting this is immediately followed by singer-songwriter Andy Hawkins, who apologises for being slow and not as funky as the preceding band, but that’s no problem. The emotional songs complement the atmosphere of this rainy afternoon and capture those inside.

This is followed by another set from Marburg’s Oclaire, whose emotional folk-punk has been one of the many highlights of the festival. While on stage he is sweet and just happy to be able to play music for people, his songs are still sung with emotion and power that could fill a much bigger room. He ends the set in the middle of the audience with an unplugged sing-along rendition of Frank Turner’s ‘The Ballad of Me and My Friends’.

Following this, and something you don’t see that often, is Northampton’s Jack Vs Hotdog, a solo performer appropriately dressed as a sausage in a bun. Starting with a Scroobius Pip line seguing into a fantastic cover of AJJ’s ‘Brave As a Noun’ he plays through a set of originals and covers ending with ‘Please Don’t Feed The Crackheads’, a song deemed not safe for anybody.

Another wonderful find from our French twin city has been The Aires, and despite technical issues they once again wow the crowd with their francophone folk-pop. Despite self-deprecatingly referring to some of their songs as “stupid love songs” they wow the afternoon audience, whose calls for an encore at the end of the set are actually answered in the shape of a cover of Vance Joy’s ‘Riptide’.

Fossilheads are next and the self-descibed folky/comical/theatrical/eco-political duo’s songs about the looming global climate catastrophe are as timely and pointed as they are funny. The pair are fantastic performers with great chemistry and stage presence. Songs about climate change denial and corporate greenwashing are delivered with a mix of comedic character work and incredible musicianship. As per their introduction, they do indeed put the ‘ooh’ back in ‘existential doom’.

After a delay due to more technical issues Jono and the Uke Dealers take to the stage. Whilst ukuleles are commonly seen as somewhat of a gimmick or at best a bit twee, the band is never in danger of seeming like a novelty. The band balance heavier political tracks with lighter fare, but either way underpinned by assured songwriting and performance. They performed well known tracks ‘Beautiful Things’, ‘Speccy Four Eyes’ and ‘Joe Meek’s Ghost’ with Katie Paton, known for P-Hex and Kings Gambit, joining him on stage for a sobering song dedicated to the troubles in Palestine. The slightly abridged set is brought to an anthemic close with new anti-war track ‘Old Grey Wolf’.

New Boots couldn’t get into the barn for Kings Gambit, as it was packed with people dancing to their pirate-esque dance folk-rock. Old-time rockers The Mental Straights were up next with some nostalgic numbers, followed by Tom Rose & The Heathen Orchestra. Tom stunned audiences into submission with his Nick Cave-esque, gravely, macabre tones and Tom Wait style quirky charm, completed by his heathen orchestra, featuring not one but two percussionists. The band performed some personal favourites ‘Dance to Hell’ and ‘Trouble’s What You Got’.

Your correspondent got right to the front for rock-garage, heavy-blues trio, Full Fiction, from Poitiers, France. They tore it up with their guitar-humping, floor-rolling solos that were so epic frontman Camille Pizon broke a guitar string. With more hair-flicking than a l’Oreal advert, Full Fiction, proved their worth. Bazouka Groove Club performed again, before psychedelic rockers King Purple from Corby, the penultimate band of the evening. They delivered their smooth panoramic sound, with intricate layers interwoven with different shapes and textures. The atmosphere was dense, and drenched with entrancing guitars and hypnotising melodies.

Cressy Jaw headlined the evening, with their reggae punk-rock, managing just four songs before they were sadly unplugged. The revelries still carried on well into the evening though, with the night-time hours melting into day for many of the bands and festival goers.

SUNDAY, THE BLACK PRINCE
With a few still jaded from the night before, and the weekend catching up with many, some acoustic acts were just what the doctor ordered. The crowd congregated, sat cross-legged before the stage, in atypcial intimate setting. Dan Plews was up first with his beautiful acoustic guitar/ ukulele variety performance. 

Duncan Bisatt was up next with original tracks; ‘White Shoes’ and the ethereal ‘Captains & Kings’. Duncan’s track ‘Capybara Love Song’ became the soundtrack to the rascality and roguishness during their trip to Marburg earlier this year, for ManoFest, that saw them miss the flight home. It was met with knowing appreciation from those in the travelling party. Duncan performed his up and coming single, ‘Young Man’, and had local audiences laughing to tongue-in-cheek number, ‘£1 Town’.

The Aries were next on the bill with their charming Francophile tunes, that were rhythmic, upbeat and humorous. As much a duet in life, as they are on stage, Jeanne and Chloe’s friendship shows through in their performance.

Occlaire, from Marburg was up next. The solo acoustic artist delivered his dynamic compositions, ranging from soft to loud in a colourful alternation, conveying passion and emotion, supported by catchy melodies. One could lose oneself, just for a moment, and wander through the alternate planes of the music.

Next up are Rolling Thunder, a relatively new, lively indie-rock five-piece, who stepped in at the last minute. Very tight from the get-go, they jangle and fuzz like true pros even at this early stage of their career. Chant-worthy choruses are their trade in stock, and with the likes of ‘Break In At The Nachtwinkel’ and ‘John Doe’ you can already see them being firm festival favourites throughout the land. Some more variation amongst the bangers wouldn’t have go amiss [the New Boots lighter remained firmly in pocket throughout], but they have an awful lot to work with there already. Popular already, gang spirit, and charming banter from singer Charlie: they have all the right ingredients to do great things in 2020. The boys certainly made an indelible mark, and are here to stay.

Cressy Jaw really are very good musicians, that much is clear by their fourth weekend appearance. After the disappointment of an abridged set last night they really turned it on to an appreciative crowd. The songs seemed more 4/4 today, the reggae edges smoothed off [or maybe that’s just New Boots’ brain after four days of drinking]. The drummer from Bazouka Groove Club got up to join in with a double-drumming solo which was one of the many highlights of the weekend’s festivities.

Our next act, Baby Lung, bring some perfect Sunday afternoon relaxed vibes. Max, the two Matts and Harry are the NN band who only began a few months ago, but now seem indispensable to our scene. The quiet drama encased in all their sax-filled, jazz-chorded indie-pop is as seductive as it is unexpected from a band from the East Midlands [we can say that, right?] . Following highlights ‘Casualty’ and ‘She’ is final song ‘Falling’, which, with the help of a devilishly handsome guitar solo, ratchets up the drama to fever pitch. The love affair has just begun, Northampton.

Full Fiction, who have been reminding us of Hyll all weekend, are still on fire today. Their Thee Oh Sees/King Gizzard wig-outs have been propelling everyone out of any stupor they may be in. Proper good guys.

Locals The Jackal Nine are back for a one-off. Like they were back at Twinfest in 2017. Why mess around trying to be ace every weekend when you can do a show every couple of years and knock it out the park with ease? They start with a lengthy intro music, the spoken word effort from Meatloaf, ‘Wasted Youth’. The busy room knows they are going to burst into life any moment now. And when they do it’s with considerable vigour; like a bat out of hell, perhaps. The mosh pit is perpetually busy as they work though their intelligent punk rock repertoire – ‘S.A.D’, ‘Gruffalo’, etc – with gleeful abandon, as you might imagine from people having not performed for that long.

“You gotta choose between those who love you and those that wanna own you” states Danny Adams, the singer/guitarist. “This [his protruding middle finger] is a toast to Boris Johnson, Donald Trump and all their ilk”. Toward the end of their set a young rapper called Paton comes on briefly and gave it some serious, glorious attitude. Then there’s the ‘Fuck Brexit’ chant, and you can quietly be assured of their political leanings. In these tumultuous times the Jackal Nine are a reassuring presence, so we’re quite sad that they now go back into the toy box. Time to start a petition perhaps…

Bazouka Groove Club are again monumental. There’s a small stage invasion tonight, and plenty of crowd interaction in general. So pleased to say this weekend they’ve lived to the quality of that first-rate band name.

Phantom Isle are the final band of the weekend. The Northants-and-now-in-London band are doing great things wherever they land, having the songcraft to match almost any new band around. They dress up in ritualistic outfits to scare the bejeesus out of us Sabbath-observing folk. They open with ‘Channel’, then run through a confident set which includes the recent singles ‘Focus’ and ‘Four Walls’. Their indie-psych pop is infectious and skyscraping, and they feel like worthy headliners for an eclectic festival which has covered a range of styles.

And that’s it for another year. Time for a lie-down. See you in 2020.

Words by Phil Moore, Rachel Thomas, Sonny JD, and Tom Rose

Photos by David Jackson and Phill Phree

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AudioStage alldayer this Saturday

This Saturday August 3rd sees The Pomfret Arms host the first ever AudioStage Festival. As we discussed last year, AudioStage is a platform for recording and interviewing artists in an…

This Saturday August 3rd sees The Pomfret Arms host the first ever AudioStage Festival. As we discussed last year, AudioStage is a platform for recording and interviewing artists in an online series format.

Acts from series 1 and 2 of AudioStage will appear, plus exclusive sneak previews of the upcoming acts in series 3, plus some extra guests. The full line-up is:
Corinne Lucy
The Drones Club
The Vincent Vega Band
Jess Orestano
EMPYRE
Humblebee
Jono And The Uke Dealers
Kenneth J Nash
Brazen Foxes
Jacob Brathwaite
Little Bitboy
L30 Robinson Artist
Har-Q

It opens at 2pm down at Cotton End, in Northampton. New Boots spoke to organiser Marcus Still

How’s the AudioStage experience been so far? You’ve achieved a lot in first two series, and now the podcast too.
The AudiosStage experience so far has been really incredible. The number of acts we have worked with so far and the response we’ve had has restored our faith that people still care about unsigned musicians. It branches out further than we could’ve first imagined, with viewers and listeners all over the world now. The podcast we feel is our opportunity to have a chat to people we want to speak to, and hash out ideas amongst ourselves with invaluable advice from tried and tested experts in their fields for musicians. Also it’s a really good chance to have a bit of a laugh and relax while still providing entertaining content for our viewers and listeners.

What’s been your personal highlight so far of working on AudioStage?
My personal highlight is really difficult to pick from if I’m honest, there are so many amazing moments, breathtaking performances, hilarious interviews and podcasts etc. But from an achievement stand point I think it was the birth of the concept. It will always be the day I realised that I could do something with this passion for trying to elevate musicians, and try to get their great music to the masses.

Can you tell us anything about series 3 yet? When’s it coming/who appears etc?
I can: we have a release date of August 5th, which is only 2 days after the festival! Obviously we’ve released a bit of a teaser in regards to promo, you’ve already seen Steph Brown and Kev Minney on the date announcement social media post, no doubt more will follow and we will tease you with some more artists from series 3. We are going to playing some previews at the festival on August 3rd, which is where people will get the ability to check out the videos before they are released to the general public, so even more reason to come down!

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