Tag: new single

New Music Friday: Joe B. Humbled

When he’s not furiously lashing at his guitar and spitting into a microphone [in firstly The Mobbs and latterly GoGo Loco] Joe Martin likes to show off his softer side with…

When he’s not furiously lashing at his guitar and spitting into a microphone [in firstly The Mobbs and latterly GoGo Loco] Joe Martin likes to show off his softer side with his Joe B. Humbled solo project. His new single might be his best song yet, the melancholy widescreen retro-pop of ‘To Be True’. New Boots gets the lowdown on the Northamptonians latest movements.

Please give us a bit of background to your solo project.
Playing as a solo artist came way before The Mobbs. I have a wide musical taste, so my solo projects have usually been an aside to experiment with lots of different styles. I started writing, playing and recording folk acoustic songs in my bedroom in 2003. From there I became obsessed with perfecting a finger-picking style. I was very interested in keeping everything as basic as possible. I’d try to write songs that wouldn’t need any other instruments or musicians – just my acoustic guitar and my voice. It remained like this for a long time. The Mobbs became the real backbone for my songwriting, but I continued to perform and record occasionally as an acoustic act. Right now I am in a sort of songwriting haven. I suddenly have the technology to multi-track properly, and can record and perform everything myself. I have been on quite a personal musical journey since The Mobbs finished last year. I’ve gone back to the music I grew up listening to, and have also opened myself up to a lot of contemporary music.

How would you describe your sound? Who are your main influences for this solo work?
I’ve found myself back in love with 1960s soul and the funkier side of rock ‘n’ roll. I’ve also been highly influenced by the work of Dan Auerbach [The Black Keys] and his record label Easy Eye Sound. Due to my love of analogue recorded sounds I’ve got into artists on Daptone Records, and most recently a label called Big Crown. Traditional and contemporary American roots music has always been something that I get excited about. I’m digging everything from Sam Cooke to Alabama Shakes at the moment. My new experiments in sound are quite soulful, I would say, and there is still a blues influence in some of the songs too. I’m perhaps showing off my ability to sing and do harmonies as oppose making a two minute rock ‘n’ roll noise. Although I still have that outlet with GoGo Loco.

What was the reaction like to the Ten Odes LP of 2015, and also the more recent EP from last year?
Ten Odes was a quick demo collection of the acoustic folk/blues songs I had been performing from 2010 to 2015. It was just a stage in time where I thought I’d better record something. It was nice working with Nick Ellison (on fiddle) and doing a vocal duet with Leila Jane. I didn’t push Ten Odes too much so the reaction was as small, as I intended it to be. This was also the case with the How Did The Folly Begin EP. It was just a point where I needed to make a record of the songs I had been working on. I lost interest pretty quickly with that EP to be honest.

Tell us about this new song, ‘To Be True’.
‘To Be True’ is quite an old song that I hadn’t been able to use for anything previously. This was the first thing I recorded toward the end of last year. When I had finished recording ‘To Be True’ I kept on writing and recording fresher material spurred on by the success of how it had turned out.

Any plans for Joe B. Humbled shows?
I am hoping to put a Joe B. Humbled band together this year. I can just say [at the moment] I have some very talented musicians interested – which is very exciting. We shall see what happens!

Any favourite bands and/or venues in Northamptonshire?
I’ve had a lot of fun playing percussion and knocking about with The Keepers. Those guys have the lust for music that I had at that age and it’s a tonic to be around them and feel inspired by their enthusiasm for it all. For this reason as well as their brilliant songs these guys are probably my favourite band at the moment. I do also like seeing Kilamojo live. The thing about Northampton music is that there has always been a sea of genres and something for everyone, everywhere – long may it continue. I like The Pomfret Arms as a venue, and The Lab. There’s masses of positivity around and plenty of support for Northampton music – same as ever. There’s always new music popping up all the time too!

What was the last album you bought/streamed?
American Love Call by Durand Jones & The Indicators

What is your burning desire for this project in the future? What plans do you have?
I want to perfect some aspects of the recording side of it. I’m always working hard to get the right drum sound. Now that I am a drummer and obsessed with rhythm I realise that the drumming is really the most important part! My desires and plan is to have a fully rehearsed and tight backing group so I can perform my new songs to an audience with a full band. There are more songs ready and I will be releasing these online over the next couple of months.

To Be True is out now via Bandcamp [see below]

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Billy Lockett finishes breakthrough year with new song

Singer-songwriter Billy Lockett has capped a big twelves months by releasing new song ‘Covered In Chaos’ today. The song was the opening number for his Royal Derngate show back in…

Singer-songwriter Billy Lockett has capped a big twelves months by releasing new song ‘Covered In Chaos’ today.

The song was the opening number for his Royal Derngate show back in May of this year, and it’s lyrical content – “Living on no sleep/Barely alive” – accurately reflects his recent hectic schedule. The year began for the Northampton singer with a sold-out London show at Union Chapel, before tours of Europe and much recording/promo work in the summer months. He ended the year with two tour supports: arena’s with Jeff Lynne’s ELO and theatres with Lewis Capaldi. A live session on Radio 2 seemed to confirm his status as a guy to pay serious attention to. 

Following his moves into AOR and dance-pop at various moments in 2018, this song is a return to the role of confessional balladeer that he made his name with. It’s very affecting, as you would expect from a man at the top of his game right now.

2019 will see Lockett out on a headline UK and European tour in his biggest venues yet.

https://www.billylockett.com

 

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New Music Friday: Brazen Foxes

Brand new outfit Brazen Foxes have spent 2018 honing their craft, and finish it with their first single, ‘Fool’. The indie-rock trio will be ones to watch in 2019, but…

Brand new outfit Brazen Foxes have spent 2018 honing their craft, and finish it with their first single, ‘Fool’. The indie-rock trio will be ones to watch in 2019, but for now let Benson Fox tell you all about their development.

How did you guys get together?
“This project is an ambition we’ve shared since we were quite young. We met and started jamming together at Foxhill Music School in our mid-teens. To some extent or another we all have a connection with that place. We used to help out with the annual music festivals they put on, work with some of the younger students, and older for that matter. It was a really nice place to grow up as musicians, and we all learned a hell of a lot during that time. After that the three of us went our separate ways musically for a while. We’ve played in various bands, had lives, got jobs; the usual stuff. Then in November last year Ben seemed to have some kind of divine moment of clarity, messaged both Sam and I, said “Right, we’re doing this” and that was that. We’ve been writing and working together ever since.

How would you describe your sound?
We set out to write songs with anthemic catchy choruses but with a technical, almost post-hardcore edge to them.  We wouldn’t go so far as to put a stick in the ground and say “this is us”, however. There’s so much music and influence out there at the moment. It’s so easy to just put stuff out and see what happens. Three words that spring to mind to describe our current sound: soulful, hard-hitting and melodic.

Who are your main influences do you think?
We took some inspiration from bands like At The Drive In, Cursive and Biffy Clyro but we’re also huge fans of some of the great songwriters and producers of the last 50 years. Quincy Jones, Nile Rodgers and David Bowie just to name a few, so there’s also a really big funk, soul and Motown influence. Then artists like Twenty One Pilots, Public Service Broadcasting and Bruno Major are doing some really interesting things at the moment as well. There’s so much music, so much inspiration out there at the moment it’s impossible to cover all of it.

Tell us about this new release, ‘Fool’.
‘Fool’ is the first song we wrote together as a band, and has almost set the trend for the songs we’ve written since then. For us though this song is just the tip of the iceberg. ‘Fool’ is about misguided love and the feeling you get when your delusions begin to unravel. We’ve all been there: you meet someone, you get to know them for a while, they lead you on and then throw you away like nothing happened. ‘Fool’ is about going through this transitional period between fantasy and reality. The loss, confusion and pain you feel but also the liberation once you come out the other side and realise what a fool you’ve been.

What are your live shows like?
Here’s a review by Jacob Barnaby of the second Brazen Foxes second gig at The Pomfret Arms [November 3rd]
“Modern music often falls into two categories: overly-simple-repetitive-commercial tracks lacking innovation; or music so complex that you need a degree to understand the time-signatures and harmonies. Brazen Foxes found the sweet spot in the middle of that Venn Diagram. In the last few months, I have not heard music so diverse and complex yet so easy to enjoy. The three Foxes bring a stellar repertoire of experience from playing professionally to running jam nights in towns. Through spending so much time immersed in different types of music and the need to please crowds they have developed a unique but familiar tone. One that instantly resonates with your old, rusty memories of certain tracks, but still surprises you by coating those sounds with a new coat of paint”.

Are you part of a wider scene in Northamptonshire?
We’re just starting out at the moment so no, we’re not particularly well established amongst any local scene. We’re really only just working towards that now. With the release of our first single this month and our emergence on the scene we’ve had a really strong end to our first year as a band. We’re looking forward to our fourth gig coming up at Club 43 in Northampton on the 15th of December – and even more so what next year has to offer.

What was the last album you bought/streamed?
Sam Thorne: Outlandos D’Amour – The Police
Benson Fox: Mekong Delta Sunrise – Astronomy Class
Ben Hood: A Song For Every Moon – Bruno Major

What is your burning desire for the band to do in the future?
The biggest one for all of us is to be able to earn a living: writing, recording and playing music. We’ve all got jobs, we’re all financing this project at the moment so the first goal is to get the project paying for itself. After that who knows. Hopefully play some big festivals, make the music we love making and most importantly; have fun!

What plans do you have?
We really want to branch out with our sounds and influences. In the new year we’re taking on a studio space where we can set up all our gear permanently. Hopefully this will enable us to start making decent quality recordings in our own space, rather than spending thousands in the studio. This should give us the freedom to create and release music that appeals to a variety of audiences. We believe the joy of writing music in the 21st century is you don’t have to conform to a genre, sound or set of influences. To quote the old adage, “The whole world is watching”. Throw enough paint at the wall and something might stick.

‘Fool’ is available to stream and buy on all the usual platforms

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New Music Friday: Born Stranger

The dark electronic pop made by Northampton man David Maddox Jones is better known as Born Stranger. The former frontman of noughties post-punkers The Departure has been busy refining the Born…

The dark electronic pop made by Northampton man David Maddox Jones is better known as Born Stranger. The former frontman of noughties post-punkers The Departure has been busy refining the Born Stranger sound over a series of singles, the latest of which is the undeniably catchy ‘Last Night On Earth’. New Boots asked a few questions about the project and single.

After the dissolution of The Departure you started NewIslands in London, before settling into Born Stranger. How did the final transition to Born Stranger come about?
Hi there! Well, when Newislands disbanded it was clear that me and Raife, the drummer in Newislands didn’t want to stop making music together. It was around the time that Hurts were coming out as a two piece and I think it inspired us to go it as a duo rather than having a conventional band set-up. Me and Raife worked together for 10 years [including his time in Newislands], and it was only the start of this year when Born Stranger became my solo project. Raife is pursuing more of a DJ/producer path with his partner Kelda.

Obviously the music stylings shifted, to this more Bastille-meets-Depeche Mode synth-pop thing. Was it an easy, natural shift?
I’ve always loved dark pop, particularly 1980s pop: stuff like Duran Duran, Chic, to more darker bands such as The Cure, Echo & The Bunnymen, etc. So I guess the sound became more streamlined and focused when there were less people involved in the music.

Who are the main influences on Born Stranger, do you think?
A big influence is music I’ve never heard before. I love hearing a new song or band or artist, that’s what excites me. I remember hearing The Weeknd ‘Can’t Feel My Face’ and then writing a Born Stranger song straight after. I like spontaneity in creativity and also to constantly be moving forward.

The last three years has been a continuous release of singles. Do you beaver away in the studio and simply release another when it’s ready? Has the positive reaction of each driven you onto the next one?
Yes. Although we did have a batch of songs ready with Yoad Nevo before we released our first single – maybe 20 songs – but in between singles we actually ended up writing new ones that would become the next single. We have had some cool collaborations – Caitlyn Scarlett, Vivienne Chi, Louise Setara – that have all added their own vibe onto some of our singles.

Tell us everything about this newest one, ‘Last Night On Earth’.
‘Last Night on Earth’ was written around a friend of mines house who sadly isn’t with us anymore. The world has lost a few amazing people recently that were seemingly happy on the surface but battled with depression on the inside. ‘Last Night on Earth’ is about living in the moment, being there for each other and celebrating humanity. We used to work with this French producer who was Yoad Nevos’ assistant called Anthony Chivers. He came up with the original beat and guitars and we wrote the melody over it. It has evolved over time and I am buzzing with how its turned out.

Do you keep one eye on the Northamptonshire scene?
I still live in Northampton, though I’ve just finished a season in Cyprus [but I am moving back, at least for a few months]. I don’t really know whats going on in the scene, is there a healthy local scene? I know Billy Lockett is doing well and Danny Connors and Adam Gammage with Tom Grennan are smashing it. I would be interested to see some of the new local bands for sure.

What has been your favourite Born Stranger moment so far?
Hearing a new tune finished for the first time is the best feeling.

What was the last album and single you bought/streamed?
Probably something by Drake or Khalid. I’ve been going pure pop lately: I like to keep my vocal melodies on point. I love the phrasing of some of the new pop that’s going around.

What is your burning desire to do in the future?
Have a bonafide hit – that’s what I want.

‘Last Night On Earth’ is out now on the usual digital platforms

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New Music Friday: Mio Flux

Mio Flux (aka Jacob Bartoli) is a Northampton electronic producer, who is working alongside Patchy, The Rockstar on many of his collaborations. ‘SNL’ is the latest single to drop, and…

Mio Flux (aka Jacob Bartoli) is a Northampton electronic producer, who is working alongside Patchy, The Rockstar on many of his collaborations. ‘SNL’ is the latest single to drop, and it’s such a great tune [and Northampton love-in] that New Boots had to have a few moments with him.

How/why did you start the Mio Flux project?
I started the Mio Flux project when I was about 17. Before then I was a frontman for indie bands and indie solo projects. My laptop and software changed everything for me musically, I started to appreciate the electronic side of music and ended up totally indulged and obsessed with it. The reasoning behind Mio Flux was to be able to collaborate with as many artists as possible from all genres and mix my two musical loves together. I always wanted to do something different and original.

How would you describe your sound?
Atmospheric. I like to add multiple layers and create my own sounds that are unexpected. I think the intro for ‘Catch My Hook’ describes my sound the best; catchy melodies with bells and airy synths as an under layer. Hopefully interesting for the listener.

Who are your main influences in music? It seems to be everything from Diplo to David Bowie…
I have a wide range. I am very influenced by producers like Murda Beatz, Mike Will Made it, Diplo, Pharrel, Mark Ronson and George Martin. They are all game changing producers in their own right. However one of my strongest influences is definitely Scritti Politti from the 70/80’s. In my eyes they have a perfect combination of outstanding songwriting, production, catchy guitar/synth/bass riffs, and memorable choruses.

What was it about Patchy that attracted you to working with him?
We met working at Toys’R’Us, and he was my manager. He first did a verse on a track I was cooking up with Marcus and George from Sarpa Salpa, and from then we just clicked and began working on ‘Balmain’, and others. Our collaboration has been going on for well over a year now, and I feel we get stronger and better with every track. His hooks are unreal; every single one of them is as catchy as the last.

What was the reaction like to [previous single] ‘Sabo’?
Fantastic, every show without fail people know the chorus [it’s not too complex], so it seems to be a really uplifting song in our set that injects energy into the crowd. It’s a song I always compare our new tracks too, to see if they have the same energy on stage.

Tell us about this new release, ‘SNL’.
The single started by Patchy and I wanting to sample guitars and really demonstrate there’s more to rap than just the beats and repetitive melodies. So we went through a few bands we know in Northampton and ‘She Never Lies’ by Sarpa Salpa stood out. SNL consists of Sarpa’s guitar recordings over the top of a trap beat. Even Marcus’ vocals make an appearance at the end of the streaming versions of the song. We wanted to really break through new ground and collaborate with an interesting mix of genres. The video is also directed by ourselves, and edited by our regular collaborator in the States, Lil Adlib. The video carries on our theme of retro gaming. There are even scenes of me and Patchy fighting in Street Fighter 2.

What are your live shows like?
Energetic and fast paced. We like to keep a continuous flow of music so Patchy and I will talk in intros or filtered outs. This ensures the crowd are kept on their toes. It’s made for every music lover.

What has been your favourite Mio Flux moment of 2018?
Without a doubt it was mine and Patchy’s headline show at the Garibaldi. The atmosphere was unreal, everyone chanting our lyrics, I won’t forget that night for a long time. The line up was so strong too; Leo Robinson, Charlie Borthwick and Kiao opening the show and Ginger Snaps providing the after party. I can’t thank everyone enough for that night, a night I really wasn’t expecting.

What was the last thing you bought/streamed?
Anderson .Paak ‘Tints’ [featuring Kendrick Lemar]. The single has got me really excited for his new album to drop. He’s definitely someone I would love to work with.

What is your burning desire to do in the future? What plans do you have?
Patchy and I are building up enough quality music to be able to release a joint mixtape, and hopefully go on tour with it. I want to keep our momentum flowing with singles and videos beforehand. Also I have nearly finished a collaboration with The Barratts: if you love ‘The Garrison’, I hope you love the remix too.

SNL is out now on the usual digital platforms

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New Music Friday: [sane]

[sane] is the name for a Northampton electronic quartet consisting of Gabriel Halford, Tim Robinson, Adam Bullock and Connor Webb. New single ‘Stitching’ sees the band return from the studio…

[sane] is the name for a Northampton electronic quartet consisting of Gabriel Halford, Tim Robinson, Adam Bullock and Connor Webb. New single ‘Stitching’ sees the band return from the studio with music after a bit of a hiatus. New Boots spoke to the guys to get up to speed.

How did you guys get together?
Gabriel: We formed the band about four years ago, off the back of these four songs I’d made as part of my music tech degree. When I moved back to Northampton and got to see so many bands I was really inspired to start performing again. I asked my old bandmate Adam first because I knew he could nail it and we shared similar tastes, then asked Northampton’s busiest drummer/musician Josh to join. I asked my friend Tim from school to join as we shared very similar tastes in music and I knew he could play keys. In all honesty I didn’t know what to expect as he’d never played in a band before, but when he learnt so much so quickly it became obvious that it was a great bet. The other guys were very keen to try another singer for a song, and after I eventually pushed my ego as singer aside, we got him on ‘Born Lever Puller’ and the difference was undeniable.
Connor: I was drafted into the band a little after its creation, I was originally a guest vocalist on a track (‘BLP’), did a couple of gigs with the guys where I sang on said track, as well as a couple others. I was made an official member sometime after that.
Adam: I was in a band with Gabriel when we were young. We had a break for a couple of years before starting [sane]. Gabriel had written an EP and wanted a band to do live performances and that’s where we started.
Tim: Gabriel had been making music under the moniker ‘sane machine’ for a little while before deciding that he wanted to put the band together in order to play live shows. At the back end of 2014, he assembled Me, Adam and Josh (our old drummer) to fulfil that. Gabs had previously been in a band, called Black Friday, with Adam whilst teenagers, and all four of us have been kicking around together for years. Josh left the band a while back and we gained a vocalist in Connor. He brought so much to the song and had a great feel for the music so we asked him to join .

How would you describe your sound?
Tim: That’s a tough one really. We dread having to associate ourselves with any particular genre because nothing quite fits! We usually tend to go with electronica/ambient techno, but there are elements from all sorts of different places.
Connor: Danceable, emotional electronica.
Adam: Electronic, moody, dance, infectious.
Gabriel: Poorly.

Who are your main influences do you think?
Gabriel: All the guys on Monkeytown Records (esp Siriusmo), Radiohead, Led Zeppelin, Country Teasers, Flying Lotus.
Tim: We are all big Radiohead fans, so some of the songwriting is influenced by them for sure. Artists such as Siriusmo, Modeselektor and Alex Banks are huge influences in terms of production style. Most of what is put out by labels like Monkeytown, and Ninja Tune, is usually a pretty good bet. Bonobo, Machinedrum, Amon Tobin. Maribou state, Dark Sky, and vocalists such as Jono Mcleery, Thom Yorke and Sampha. To be honest, we all just really love listening to music. Our tastes are fairly eclectic, and massively overlap, but we each bring something individual to the table.

What was the reaction like to ‘help your self’ EP? Also, why the two year gap in releases?
Gabriel: It was generally really positive! We put a lot of effort into every song and making sure the CDs looked swanky and professional. We also learnt a lot about how to improve for our next release, mainly simplifying the arrangements. The main reason for the long gap is that we’ve been wanting to make an album. I’m a bit of a perfectionist, and it’s taken a long time to create material I’d be proud enough of to release.
Adam: We had a good response to HYS. I spent six months travelling around India at the back end of last year, so the band was a man down for a while also.
Tim: Generally pretty well received. ‘Holy Poly’ got a fair bit of radio play and is the one people tend to anticipate at live shows. It took us a long time to put together and we have definitely progressed a long way since then, in terms of production and songwriting. We did release another song, ‘Born Lever Puller’ the following year, which was the one that featured Connor. The big gap is down to a combination of perfectionism, lack of time, and various life events that slow the whole process down. Our drummer left the band, so we had to regroup a bit after that as it changed both the type of music we make and the way in which we make it.. And also just miscellaneous work commitments and trying to fit music around a functioning life. It would be great to be able to dedicate more time, but once or twice a week is about all usually manage.

Tell us everything about this new track, ‘Stitching’.
Gabriel: The song is about the feelings you go through after losing something and trying to put yourself back together again. The aches of grieving and trying to also be grateful for having had something worth losing in the first place. ‘Good grief’ I suppose you could call it.
Connor: Very melodic, multi-sectional, fun to play live.

What are your live shows like?
Gabriel: Kinetic.
Connor: Big in sound, lots of emotion.
Tim: For live shows, we have synths, guitar, vocals and a couple of midi controllers to deal with the drums and various samples. The recorded stuff adds piano in to the mix, so we have those on Ableton to drop in for added texture. There’s normally quite a lot going on!

Are you part of a wider scene in Northamptonshire, playing with like-minded bands?
Gabriel: We’ve played with Usurp, Rise quite a few times. There’s a lot of mutual respect there I think. Those guys are amazing musicians. I have a side project called Mr Mulvaney with Angus McAlpine (formerly of Adolphus Tips), which is high energy stuff.

What has been your favourite band moment of the past year?
Gabriel: Playing at The Garibaldi Hotel earlier this year, no doubt. Our live setup is technically pretty complicated so we’ve been haunted by very distracting issues a few too many times. It was about first gig since Adam got back and motivated us all to keep going!
Connor: Our most recent gig: everything ran smoothly, everyone performed well, it was our most successful gig up to that point and it felt like we’d really nailed it .

What was the last album you bought/streamed?
Gabriel: Tyler the Creator – Flower Boy
Connor: Khruangbin – Con todo el mundo
Adam: Unknown Mortal Orchestra – Sex & Food
Tim: Djrum – Portrait with Firewood, and Maribou State – Kingdoms in Colour

What is your burning desire for the band to do in the future? What plans do you have?
Adam: Have bigger gigs with bigger bands and get more releases out on Spotify etc. Work towards an album.
Tim: To get our music out there, really. Its really satisfying to hear positive feedback. Its also incredibly gratifying seeing people dancing when we play live, so more of that. It would be nice to be playlisted somewhere, to get ourselves heard outside of the local scene.
Gabriel: We want to tour off the back of our next release and get some good shows and recognition. I myself want to do more solo live sets (Ableton live) in some different environments. Basically though, play Glastonbury!

‘Stitching’ is out now via the usual platforms

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New Music Friday: Luna Rosa

Corby’s alternative, groovy, abrasive indie rockers Luna Rosa have a new single out, the polemic ‘Fear, Filth, Dirt & Death’. All money generated from the single as well as merchandise…

Corby’s alternative, groovy, abrasive indie rockers Luna Rosa have a new single out, the polemic ‘Fear, Filth, Dirt & Death’. All money generated from the single as well as merchandise sales will be going to the victims of the Grenfell Tower disaster. You can watch the video below. New Boots speaks to the quartet to delve deep.

How did you guys get together?
Rory: This line-up [Rory McDade (guitar/vox), Aidan Furey (guitar), Charlie Thorneycroft (bass)] got together around Christmas 2017 and then Jack Connolly joined us on drums a couple months ago. We all met at a local community centre, in a class on origami. Mr. Binley who ran the class sat us all together and we just got to talking. We were shit at origami so soon dropped that and got on with the music instead.

How would you describe your sound?
Rory: It can be quite brash and raucous at times but with quiet and more tender moments. We try to make each song stand on its own, so we try to make them sonically different whilst still keeping the same attitude and feel. Its hard to pigeonhole it yourself. Maybe ‘Speedfreak punkadelia’, that sounds good.

Who are your main influences in music?
Aidan: John Squires’ left hand
Jack: Foals to Stereophonics
Charlie: Brian Jonestown Massacre, Causa Sui
Rory: James Brown’s funky chicken move

Tell us everything about the new single ‘Fear, Filth, Dirt & Death’.
Rory: Its sad to say that the song pretty much wrote itself over the course of two days. I’d read an article about life before the NHS and one of the quotes was “Hunger, Filth, Fear And Death”. The next day I was driving to Nottingham, the news came on about the fire at Grenfell Tower and by the time I got to Nottingham it was pretty much all over, in a flash all these lives had been lost and there was nothing anyone could do about it. It was surreal and truly awful. I stood with my friends just in silence and shock really. It could’ve happened anywhere to anyone. That night I watched a doc about a nurse who was living out of food banks and just struggling everyday whilst she worked as hard as she could to help people, and this similar quote popped up again – “Fear, Filth, Dirt & Death”. I think it all just hurt too much, knowing that living in a country that’s supposed to be further evolved still suffers because the facts remain the same: the state stays in control and gets rich no matter the consequence. It was actually recorded last year but with a few change ups we did it again this year at The Lodge Studios in Northampton with Colde & Loveless behind the desk. I think they knew the significance of the song and, like always, really got behind us.

A great gesture to give the proceeds to the Grenfell fund. Why make that decision?
Rory: We feel that this song hits on a few sensitive subjects with everything that’s happened and is going on in the UK at the minute. We didn’t think it’d be right to sing about these things and try to gain from them. It’d be like making money off of someone’s pain. We’re under no illusion that we can change whats happened or give the victims what they need, as I don’t think anyone will ever be able to. But if we can bring people together by showing our support at the time of the Grenfell Inquiry it may help and keep peoples attention on the matter.

What are your live shows like? Is it really true you’ve done 300 shows since 2015?
Rory: It’s just over the 250 mark I think. When our EP came out in 2015 we were doing 3-4 shows a week. Playing anywhere that would have us! Our shows are just full on; all the songs are played with an intensity because that’s just how they should be played. They’ve been known to get a bit rowdy, leading to us being barred from a few places, but I don’t think that’s our fault – too many nutcases follow us about! We’re quite calm zen people…

Are you part of a wider scene in Northamptonshire, playing with like-minded bands? Any favourite bands/venues to play with?
Rory: Yeah I think Corby & Northampton have scenes that are getting much better. We always try and play with similar bands from around the way. There’s far too many acts to mention, there’s far more to the local music scene than people realise. So much good stuff out there. We love playing Corby obviously, The White Hart is always good to us. We played The Angel in Nottingham the other week and that was a nice venue.

What has been your favourite band moment of the past year or so?
Rory: We played Dot to Dot and that was pretty fun, but it’s probably – and probably always will be – coming home and playing Corby to a crowd that know the songs. It always feels good. And then after just getting to go out with all your mates. We did break down on the motorway for 10 hours after Jack’s first gig with us, drank some dodgy water and things got weird. Wouldn’t say it was a favourite moment, but I doubt we’ll forget it.

What was the last album you bought/streamed?
Aidan: DMA’s For Now
Charlie: Muddy Waters  Before The Rain
Jack: War On Drugs  A Deeper Understanding
Rory: Ray Charles I’m All Yours Baby

What is your burning desire for the band to do in the future? What plans do you have?
Just to keep going, hopefully play bigger and better shows, record and release better songs. There will be another single coming in October, and then we plan to release a new EP by the end of the year – and we have a few things up our sleeve for that, touring wise. Just ride it like you stole it till the wheels fall off, no other real way to do it!

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New Music Friday: S.G. Wolfgang

An MK-based band with Northampton heritage, S.G. Wolfgang have been planting twisted blues seeds since 2014. The four malcontents are led by the eponymous Sean Grant, who New Boots spoke…

An MK-based band with Northampton heritage, S.G. Wolfgang have been planting twisted blues seeds since 2014. The four malcontents are led by the eponymous Sean Grant, who New Boots spoke to about new single ‘Souls Out’.

How did the band get together?
Myself and Fiske [guitarist] are both born and bred Northamptonians, born in our very own Northampton General Hospital. I grew up in the little village of Sywell, and Fiske the not so little village of Parklands. We both got jobs in the bright lights of Milton Keynes so we relocated together, renting our first place. Romantic really. Myself and Fiske have played in various guises over the years. S.G. Wolfgang begun after many of these years of experimentation when I just sat down with a guitar and decided to write some simple songs to go out and play myself in local pubs. It grew from there. Fiske was the first addition: he’s the left hand, I’m the right. Phil, our multi-instrumentally talented organ grinder, was added, and Matty is the third drummer but was always the guy we wanted. If you haven’t seen him drum live I’d highly reccomend it, he’s incredible.

How would you describe your sound?
Queens of the Nick Cave Turners

Who are your main influences in music?
It’s so vast. Fiske has a huge vinyl collection, I DJ everything and anything, Phil likes real intricate instrumental stuff and Matty is the Spotify find king. Deeply routed in the band is Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds / Queens of the Stone Age with a song smithery edge. My favourite album of last was Idles Brutalism. It really is a gem; the tenacity of the delivery and political slant at a time last year with a disillusioned country.

How did you hook up with Fierce Panda? How do you look back on the 7 Deadly 7 EP now?
Fondly. This EP was a real turning point for us, it felt like we’d reached our sound and feel, recording it at Konk Studios [London studio owned by Ray Davies] too, with Guy Massey producing was an incredible experience. We ended up supporting one of the Fierce Pandas bands at the 100 Club. Mr Simon “Panda” Williams was there and we began a dialogue which later turned into a relationship, which again was a dream after buying Fierce Panda releases as a music fan to being signed to the label ourselves.

Tell us everything about ‘Souls Out’.
It’s a punchy little number, and that’s we wanted for a first single back. Songwriting for me is my form of release / therapy so the songs are very much true to how I feel inside when writing. Before, during and after the writing and recording of this album I went through a tough time dealing with depression and made a lot of changes in my life and learnt a lot about myself. ‘Souls Out’ is the end of the rope: nowhere else to go, exposed to the world, what you are and who you are. I think the instrumentation represents this too with the eerie jerky riff churning its way through the majority of the song.

What are your live shows like?
Miserably fun. I wish I wrote more happy upbeat music that people could get down to! The live setup is a huge sound, Matty is an incredible hard hitting drummer, Fiske is the “octavepus” and Phil has so many cables and pedals and keyboards, which he runs all into a bass amp and a Micro Korg into the PA – which changes up a regular sound somewhat. I think we come across heavier live than we do on record, we certainly class ourselves as a live band.

Are you part of a scene in MK, playing with like-minded bands? Any favourite bands to play with?
We certainly are. Our local venue is The Craufurd Arms which is an incredible venue run by some great guys. I DJ there too. There’s some great bands about. Not a lot doing what we’re doing but there’s Dan Stock recently signed to Heavenly, personal faves Our Man In The Bronze Age, although they’re heavier, but the Craufurd is the hub for it all. It’s great to have a place like that in the area; like-minded people and friends alike.

What has been your favourite band moment of the past year?
The first single finally coming out! It had been such a long process, and it popped into the iTunes Alt chart again which was nice to see people still downloading it / streaming it, however that dark magic works these days.

What was the last album you bought/streamed?
Ah so much. I’m a sponge for new music, all kinds of genres too. I’ve been playing Childish Gambino ‘This Is America’ on repeat. So good: the message behind it, breaking musical boundaries, the video too. Super super cool.

What is your burning desire for the band to do in the future? What plans do you have?
I’m looking forward to having our debut album out end of this year, and I’m looking forward to playing some shows in support of this. I’d love for it to be successful enough for us to make another one, that’s all I want: not much, just to be able to keep creating and pushing out some music that we really love.

Souls Out is available via The Shipping Forecast. Album The Shadows are Lengthening will be released in October. They play the Grey Dog Festival at Roadmender August 18th

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New Music Friday: Wishing Wolf

Kettering emo rockers Wishing Wolf have a new single with accompanying video out, entitled ‘As Long As You’re Here Tonight’. The five-piece – Danny Ray Holmes on vocals, Ben Essam and…

Kettering emo rockers Wishing Wolf have a new single with accompanying video out, entitled ‘As Long As You’re Here Tonight’. The five-piece – Danny Ray Holmes on vocals, Ben Essam and Kyle on guitar, Jazza Wallace on bass and James Angelo Moodie on drums – have been tearing up the local hardcore scene these past couple of years. It was time New Boots got the lowdown.

How did you get together?
Danny: We got together early 2017. Wishing Wolf was originally just me and a few acoustic tracks that I threw together, and while I loved doing that, I wanted to take it in a new direction with more energy, I was listening to a lot of pop punk at the time, and really wanted to throw my own take on it. So I asked Moodie, Jazza and at the time Skye to join, who were all happy to jump on. Moodie then introduced me to Kyle, and he jumped on too. After a few member changes we now have Bessie on lead guitar, and Kyle on rhythm after leaving for a short time.

How would you describe your sound?
Bessie: We take a lot of inspiration for a whole multitude of artists and I think that is reflected in our sound. I don’t think there is a single genre we fit into. We speak amongst ourselves about it and people ask us at shows, ‘what genre are Wishing Wolf?’, and we just say ‘our own’.

Who would you say are your main influences?
Danny: We’re influenced by a lot of different bands, being that all of us listen to a diverse range of music. Most of the songs start from me and the guys add in the their own touches at the end. Our most obvious ones are the older post-hardcore/emo bands such as The Used, My Chemical Romance, The Red Jumpsuit Apparatus, as well as newer bands like Neck Deep and State Champs. There’s a lot of lead parts as well, since most of us have come from metal bands in the past, and I’m also really into the orchestral sounds of music, like strings and pianos, that I like to throw in too.

What was the reaction like to last year’s ‘True Eyes’ EP?
Moodie: We felt that even though we didn’t have much of a following at the time we did have quite a few positive reactions from various people, whether that was from people buying our EP, or just leaving good reviews for us. On the build up to the release we were all quite anxious about whether people would actually enjoy the music we created. However our current rhythm guitarist Kyle wasn’t in the band when the EP was released but was still good mates with us all. So it was helpful to have someone on the other side. As for the feedback from social media it was nice too hear that people really enjoyed it, as well as others giving constructive criticism on certain things the audience would like too hear/see.

Tell us about the new single.
Moodie: We were all nervous and excited about it. The EP had a mixture of different sounds and ‘As Long As You’re Here Tonight’ was the first song we’ve released with much more of an established sound. We decided to go further in the direction of emo rather than the pop punk songs from the EP. From the get go we were nervous about people’s reactions. Thankfully people gave us some great feedback! The reaction was overwhelming and overall made us very proud of the release. We felt this song was the first one to really put us out there and getting gigs and interviews like this off of the back of it only continued the good vibes.

What are your live shows like?
Kyle: We certainly aim to keep a nice balance with our live show, of course as musicians it’s important for us to play to the best of our ability, however as fans it’s important for us to put on a great show. We put a lot of energy into our live show and that’s because we love doing it. We take a lot of inspiration from some of the classic bands of the genre in terms of both music and stage presence – Paramore, My Chemical Romance, The Used – as well as new bands in the scene such as State Champs and Neck Deep.

Are you part of a wider scene in Northamptonshire, playing with like-minded bands? Any favourite bands/venues to play with?
Jazza: We would say we are part of a wider scene in Northamptonshire, although we think we have a unique sound from other pop punk/emo bands from around here. We are very close with a select few local bands including Last Chance and The Young and Restless; we love to play shows with those guys. So far we’ve been lucky enough to work with a few local promoters as well including Metal Wave Promotions, Rocked Up and HOP Events. We also love putting our own shows on: choosing who we want to play with and helping out some of the smaller local bands that are just starting out, for example PT-33, who killed it on their first ever gig!

What has been your favourite band moment of the past year?
Danny: It’s hard for us to really say. Just the joy of jamming together at practice and gigs, and just generally hanging out is the best part of being in a band. It’s essentially a second family when you’ve got the right chemistry. Releasing the music that we’ve got and playing all the shows we have up to this point is probably the most exciting things we’ve done, but we love just being a part of Wishing Wolf all the same.

What was the last album you bought/streamed?
Kyle: My Chemical Romance The Black Parade
Jazza: I Prevail Lifelines
Moodie: Panic! At the Disco A Fever You Can’t Sweat Out
Bessie: Polyphia Renaissance
Danny: The Red Jumpsuit Apparatus Don’t You Fake It

What is your burning desire for the band to do in the future? What plans do you have?
Jazza: Play as many shows as we can and try to build a bigger fan base. We’d love to have the chance to play festivals in the future and have fans show up to our set and sing along with us. We’re also looking forward to bringing out a full album, so we would love to have the chance to make a tour or mini tour out of it when released.

As Long As You’re Here Tonight is out now via the usual platforms

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New Music Friday: Sarpa Salpa

Northampton quartet Sarpa Salpa have been slaying the Midlands with their infectious party indie anthems for the past two years, and celebrate another milestone today with the release of their…

Northampton quartet Sarpa Salpa have been slaying the Midlands with their infectious party indie anthems for the past two years, and celebrate another milestone today with the release of their third single, ‘Circuits’. New Boots asked them all about it, and about the whirlwind build-up.

Can you give us a quick run down of how and why and where you got together?
Ethan: Well Marcus & George had previously played together in another band, so they started Sarpa as a new project with a new sound/image to their previous outing. Then they snared Charlie shortly after a chat at a pub one day. I had met George through a very short lived band/project that I think that did two practices and one meal out before it fell apart. Then a month or two later saw him looking for a bassist again, I drop him a message and here we are! This was all around the last month or two of 2015.

In case there’s anyone left who doesn’t know SS, can you briefly sum yourselves up in a nice soundbite? Or whats maybe better is what’s the best way you’ve seen yourself described in publicity material…?
Marcus: That’s such a hard question, one we always have trouble answering, I think the answer is Indie Pop! Or pop? Or alternative pop? We don’t know!! People say all sorts, we have been told we remind people of Sticky Fingers, Kasabian & Red Hot Chilli Peppers. I don’t even like some of those bands… I even once was told ‘Craig David’? So we just don’t know anymore! In summary: we are four guys trying to not write songs that sound the same as each other, and as different as other musicians music as possible! If you want to find out what that sounds like, come and hear it for yourself .

It’s been a whirlwind couple of years for you. Personal highlight please.
Charlie: There have been so many amazing moments we’ve all shared as a band, but our recent trip to MaNo Festival in Germany definitely stands out for me! The love we were shown over in Marburg was like nothing I’ve ever experienced before, although with the amount of beer we all washed down, I’m honestly surprised we remember a thing!

‘She Never Lies’ was a real moment for you. Is that single release last autumn when it all began to click for you, or has something else felt more significant?
George: ‘She Never Lies’ was definitely a stand out moment for us, It feels like a turning point for the band. Although we had been a band for a little while when we recorded it, it was a bit of a new beginning for us. We’d just got a manager and started recording with a new producer so it kind of felt like the beginning of Sarpa Salpa. We still have a long way to go though and a lot more we all want to achieve

Tell us about ‘Circuits’.
Marcus: ‘Circuits’ got its name from thinking about how humans are wired up. ‘Circuits’ is a mash up of a cry for help from addiction, and a change in character in relationships! The classic combo!! I wrote the lyrics when I was literally hiding by the bin area in work smoking a cigarette, hiding from people who care for me and wouldn’t want to see me doing that or knowing I do it! In that moment I almost looked at myself and thought “what am I doing?” It all became so pathetic, hiding alone in a stinking pen of beer bottles and soggy cardboard just so I can breath in some burnt leaves? So I wrote the first line, and like my anger, the lyrics just kept flowing out of me. “And again and again and again and again and again and again” I remember standing typing that and the repetitive tapping of the same keys over and over very much summed up the relentless rut I was in!
The chorus very much sums up relationships from a brief gaze; people sometimes try and change their partners, for selfish reasons, for good reasons, whatever the reason, there may not even be a reason. People can just sometimes morph into new people over time, new interests, new hobbies, change of politics or fashion! The chorus is just one large chant of uncertainty, disguised in confidence! “Something has changed, and I think it’s you.” Or is it me? Later in the song the lyrics develop into “I think it’s me”.
I took these separately written concepts to a rehearsal one evening. Upon my arrival George said “I’ve got a new riff”. It all took shape very quickly, especially when the bass and drums teamed up, the words were no longer just text on a screen, they were melodies flying around in my head! Circuits was born

You filled the small room at the Roadmender twice in 6 months. What’s the formula, that you might want to share, for making this happen? “Be nice guys with sweet tunes and great management” would be our guess…
Ethan: I think it’s a combination of a few things. Firstly our sound is quite pop-orientated, so it’s easy to bob along to. We also have been lucky to meet some great bands, who very kindly played with us! I also like to think that we put on a good little show these days. Because of the amount of gigs we have done it really has started to come quite naturally to us now, and we can enjoy it a little more instead of worrying about remembering the parts. If the band are having fun there is a good chance the audience will do too.
And as you mentioned since we picked up our manager Kev in August last year he’s really helped push us and keep us focused. He’s always the first to give us honest criticism and point out things we could improve! He also introduced us to our producer Faz, who really helped nail the sounds and idea’s we had in our head! So I guess I would say it’s a mixture of luck and a tonne of hard luck at the end of the day. But always be nice to people, that goes without saying!

You play lots of shows, all across the Midlands. What’s your favourite place to play outside of Northants?
Marcus: I do like The Horn in St. Albans, that’s got a really nice PA system and always sounds crisp! And also Club 85 in Hitchin – there are these great, gigantic, colourful, glow-in-the-dark stars on the ceiling above the stage and I think that’s awesome when you have the crowd in front of you and space above your head! Of course Esquires in Bedford, that has become a second home to us in recent months! Also any festival stage! The feel of that plasticity wooden-ish material gets me so excited! SUMMER TIME SHOWS!! Except for recently at a festival when the stage was so wonky it looked like a ship mid-sinking, that show was cancelled funny enough!! Haha.

Best and worst thing about your own scene here in ShoeTown.
Charlie: The best thing about our ShoeTown scene has to be all of the people who attend local shows, and spread the word about small bands to their friends and families! The worst thing about our ShoeTown scene is the lack of venues that are playable for local bands, it just seems to be the same gigs at the same 3 venues every week!

What are you grooving to currently? 
Charlie: I’ve been really in to Unknown Mortal Orchestra’s latest album Sex and Food, it’s one of those albums that you find yourself listening to 4 to 5 times a day! George has recently introduced me to a band called Porches also, and they have become my synth-caked guilty pleasure.

You’ve got Twinfest coming up, but what else can we expect from the second half of 2018?
George: We’re hoping to be putting out another new single and potentially an EP at the end of the year. We’re also playing a whole bunch of cool festivals like Rocked Up Hootenanny, so there’s a lot to look forward to!

Circuits is out today from the usual digital platforms

Sarpa Salpa selected live dates
June 22nd – The Lab, Northampton
June 23rd – The Music Barn Festival, Kettering
July 6th – Daxtonbury Festival, Podington
July 26th – The Guildhall, Northampton [Twinfest]
August 11th –  Woodfest, Irchester Country Park
September 8th – Rocked Up Hootenany, Rockingham

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