Tag: Northampton

New Music Friday: King’s Gambit

Chris Startup – songwriter, lead vocals, guitar and harmonica – is the musical director of King’s Gambit, the decade-old Northampton folk-rock collective. They are now drip-releasing a live album, and…

Chris Startup – songwriter, lead vocals, guitar and harmonica – is the musical director of King’s Gambit, the decade-old Northampton folk-rock collective. They are now drip-releasing a live album, and New Boots spoke to him about the band’s history and this live project. 

How did King’s Gambit get together?
In 2006 I met Katie [Paton] and Cheese at separate events as I was playing full time with Tarantism. Katie agreed to sing a few songs of mine, and I convinced her to do more backing singing in 2008 as we got a few gig in the local pubs and local festivals. I remember our first ever King’s Gambit gig playing at The Umbrella Fair in the summer of 2009: we played songs such as ‘Carry Out Some More’ and ‘A Girl Called Moira’. The audience loved it.

In 2006 I did a separate gig with cheese and a few other friends of mine. We played a TwinFest gig in Beckets Park and I can only imagine now it sounded very ‘folk-rock’, as I had a drumkit that was played by a great friend Mr Will Stevens – and bass by Matt Clayson. Cheese then disappeared and came back later in 2014 to become a massive part of our sound that you here now.

Early in 2010 I met up with Helen Turton she was playing with InVocal at the time and travelling all over playing different festivals and clubs. We met during a ‘TEACHERS’ drinks party and I asked if she wouldn’t mind playing the cello with me… she said yes! Later that year Katie, Helen and I started to take it seriously and started to practice once a week with Katie not realising I will soon ask her to play bass guitar. 

King’s Gambit was formed out of friendship, festivals and great times. The origin of our band name ‘gambit’ means to “trip over your opponent” (the Italian is Gambetto), or chess move. It also means to me a reference to the King Tripping LSD style lover. I loved the fact we all have a dance-infused sense of rhythm within us, and I hope we now achieve the same vibe for our audience

How would you describe your sound?
Folk-rock dance anthemic party music 🙂

You’ve put out three albums since 2012. What’s been the reaction to them? Do you feel there’s a narrative progression with them?
We first released Lines and Verses in 2012. These were all my first songs I wrote during 2001 – 2006. I had recorded some of these songs before, but without success. When I started working with Katie and Helen I knew the time was right. I recorded all of this album myself, except for Helen’s cello and Katie’s vocals, and at home. I didn’t know my audience, or who I was trying to reach to. I just wanted to record music and share it. To my surprise we sold out all our CDs in the first 4 weeks.

In 2014 FolkBeat was a huge deal for all of us. We had worked hard with our ‘live’ sounds now for a few years and had been gigging these songs at pubs and festivals. I began almost immediately after Lines and Verses teaching Katie the bass guitar, and finally we started to progress as a group. Helen Turton played the cello, I played the kick drum, vocals and harmonica, and Katie Paton played bass and vocals. It was also great to ask Cheese to come and guest on a few tracks ‘Andrews Song’ and ‘Dressed To White’ with his own hand-crafted Mandola. When we released this album we saw the difference with many more festivals and venue bookings. We had gone to France, Germany on Twinfest gigs and had been started to play the festival circuit on the back of Tarantism.

Over the next few years Cheese joined us full-time. All our previous albums had progressed and changed by his amazing sound and ability to play the mandolin, mandola and banjo. We started playing folk clubs around Banbury and Brackley and other parts of the UK, and working a lot in the summer at small festivals – and now in 2018 working with the likes of Continental Drifts.

From One To Another, from 2016, I feel is OUR album. We individually play all the way through on it. I asked my father-in-law Mr Chris Hewett to guest as the accordion player on the album, so I really feel it has family vibe for me.
The songs are so important to me and represent what we do best: playing original folk tunes such as ‘Old Town’ ‘Charles Baker’ and ‘From One To Another’. It is also in some ways an expression of rebellion and protest: ‘The Only One’, ‘Mary Jane’ and ‘Clockworks’.

I’ve been on the underground festival scene for so long with Tarantism I take inspiration from them and other bands such as AOS3, Back To The Planet, RDF. These groups have been the back bone of what I am and was a part of for many years on the festival circuit. Each year has progressed well with King’s Gambit. We have learnt so much from each album and I guess so do the audience. I think that we have had a very natural narrative progression with our band and the music and sound reflects this. We are of course a LIVE band and now play for around 2 hour sets.

With From One To Another you said that this is the album that provides the full picture you’ve been working towards since the beginning. Do you think you achieved that?
Yes it does in one way, but doesn’t in another. I feel I have achieved my goal of writing original folk tunes with arranging vocal melodies. But I still feel it’s just the beginning of the whole picture. I want to create a dance-fuelled party atmosphere. The last three albums is what we do collectively as a group, and will always play them live, but I want to push new boundaries and explore more dance tunes with a banging kick beat.

One review of the album declared “I’m surprised they’re not better known”. Do you share this assessment? Hell, how does a folk group break through; Radio 2?
I do wish we were better known. I feel over time we will be and that our albums and live sound will see more and more people come and see us and dance. The bigger the stage the better. We are totally self sufficient. I am the manager, promoter, designer, songwriter, record producer. It doesn’t take 8 years. I believe it takes a lot longer to achieve goals such as Radio 2, and that is why we are starting to release a live album over the next year and anyone can hear or view it.

Tell us everything about these two new performances that have appeared online. On Facebook recently you said it was “the start of our live album”…so more to come?
Earlier this year I set up my recording equipment and had a meeting with a great friend of mine who is a camera and video editor, Dom – and got to work in creating a live album. I wanted to ask around 50 people to come along on a Sunday and see us live. They sat down during the whole gig and listened to what we asked, so I really feel it captures a cool Sunday vibe. I press record and we start to film. I think a lot of the audience thought it was for a music video, and that they had to listen to one song 50 times over a two-hour period. This wasn’t the case. We play 12 songs in total for just over an hour. I go back home and start to produce and couldn’t quiet believe what we captured. We will be slowly releasing the whole album over the next year on Youtube and other streaming services whilst we concentrate on our next album.

What made you do the Open Stage performance in the first place?
I make a living teaching music. I teach 12 instruments and also teach singing workshops around the county; singing4breathing , people with COPD [chronic obstructive pulmonary disease], and I also have a 30 + piece choir at Open Stage. To me Open Stage was the perfect opportunity to use this venue as I have strong links and also it is central for people to come and watch us in Northampton.

Are you part of a wider roots scene in Northamptonshire, playing with like-minded bands? Any favourite bands/venues to play with? Favourite local festivals?
We love working with any local bands and yes we are definitely part of the wider roots scene…Jono and Uke Dealers, VHS Pirates, Howling Owls – we also had a great new talent Jacob Braithwaite perform at our From One To Another album launch. We play at least once or twice a year at The Lab, The Lamplighter and The Umbrella Fair.

What was the last album you bought/streamed?
The last album I was listening to was Fat Freddie’s Drop – Dr Boondigga and the Big BW. I have recently been streaming CamelPhat and loving a track called ‘Gypsy King’. And Jacob Collier ‘With The Love In My Heart’ – great tracks…

What is your burning desire for the band to do in the future? What plans do you have?
I want to record our next collection of songs at a studio and mix from home. I think we deserve to now move out of the bedroom and into a recording studio to record the next album. I would love to put it on vinyl too. It will be a very dance-lead euphoric sound, and will include songs called ‘Patterns’, ‘Le Bop’, ‘Ballad of a Man’ and ‘Songs in June’. e are also hoping to support a few bands next year, headline new festivals, go on a mini-tour around the UK and generally reach out to as many people as possible.

King’s Gambit Live at Open Stage is available for streaming now, and more tracks will be added over time





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It’s A Shoe In: Northants gig guide Dec 12th – Dec 18th

SKIRT + MUNDAYS + EX-PETS Friday December 14th The Lab, Northampton Corby indie-punks come to ShoeTown, plus excellent stoner-psych and punk supports. Doors 8pm, price TBA SKINDRED + SONIC BOOM…

Friday December 14th
The Lab, Northampton
Corby indie-punks come to ShoeTown, plus excellent stoner-psych and punk supports. Doors 8pm, price TBA

Friday December 14th
The Roadmender, Northampton
Welsh ragga punk metallers promote new album Big Tings. Support from London ska rockers and local rap rockers. Doors 7.30pm, £21.50 tickets

Friday December 14th
The King Billy, Northampton
Three albums in, East Anglian classic rockers who tour a lot. Doors 9pm, free entry

Saturday December 15th
Club 43, Northampton
Two bangers at the Rebel Waltz clubnight. The ‘These Kids’ band make pop-punk with every fibre of their beings, taking from bands such as Microwave, Boston Manor, Seaway, Fleetwood Mac, Green Day. Support from new ShoeTown alt-rock trio. Doors 8pm. Free before 9pm, £4 after

Saturday December 15th
The Lab, Northampton
“Some Christmas songs, joy and merriment with the least merry musicians ever to grace the streets of this town”. Former ShoeTown resident Malco brings an old telecaster and her voice along. The singer-songwriter has since been in the studio writing and recording her as-yet-untitiled debut album. Velvet Engine is the brainchild of Latina Northamptonian San-D Godoy, described as “yearning pop folk, with a sprightly but reflective soul”. Harries is a well-know local musician and songwriter. Doors 7.30pm, free entry

Saturday December 15th
The White Hart, Corby
Christmas party as two local bands join forces: one brings the “glunk rock”, the other the twanging riffs. Doors 7.30pm, free entry

Saturday December 15th
The Horseshoe Inn, Wellingborough
Atmospheric post-hardcore from Oxford, metalcore from Nottingham, five-piece ShoeTown thrash metal band, and a rock trio from Milton Keynes. Doors 7pm, free entry

Sunday December 16th
The Albion Brewery Bar, Northampton
Eight-piece band from Birmingham, made up of brothers and sisters and twins and saxophones and trumpets and cute, weird dancers. Their music is an eclectic mix of jazz, lounge, psychedelia, two tone, pop and punk. Plus support from three brothers from Rugby who mash up funk, disco, and hip-hop, and local solo guitar indipopper.
Door 7.30pm, £8 tickets

Sunday December 16th
The Drunken Duck, Kislingbury
Songs from Rosie Swayne’s eco-political satirical show, newly evolving into a super exciting musical double act with long term singing collaborator Rachel Duncan. Dawes folk/pop debut album ‘Little Blue Book’ is out now Opening is a singer-songwriter who offers a jazzy style. Doors 7.30pm, free entry

Sunday December 16th
The Garibaldi Hotel, Northampton
Bringing you solo vibes including country music, ambient cello jams and a downtempo korg volca set. Doors 7pm, free entry

Sunday December 16th
The Three Horseshoes, Ecton
The troubadour – of Bennett Wilson Poole / Grand Drive / Danny and the Champions of the World fame – plays a solo show at 2.30 pm. Free entry




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Rapper slowthai included in annual ‘BBC Sound Of’ longlist

Only a matter of weeks after been named in YouTube Music’s ‘Ones to Watch’ list, Northampton rapper slowthai is making national headlines again with his inclusion in the ‘BBC’s Sound…

Only a matter of weeks after been named in YouTube Music’s ‘Ones to Watch’ list, Northampton rapper slowthai is making national headlines again with his inclusion in the ‘BBC’s Sound Of 2019’ list.

BBC Music today revealed the 10 acts which make up this year’s long list.

Joining slowthai is Dermot Kennedy, Ella Mai, Flohio, Grace Carter, King Princess, Mahalia, Octavian, Rosalía, Sea Girls and Dermot Kennedy. The longlist was chosen by a panel of industry experts including Stormzy, BBC Radio 1’s Annie Mac, Emily Eavis and Olly Alexander.

slowthai started out freestyling with the older kids from his estate and has cemented himself as one of the most exciting new rappers in Britain. This year he has released a slew of singles and will take his Brexit Bandit tour across the UK and Europe in March and April next year.

Previous ‘Sound Of’ nominees include 50 Cent, Adele, Florence +The Machine, Frank Ocean, Sam Smith, Dua Lipa and Rag‘n’Bone Man.

The daily countdown of the Top 5 will kick off on Monday, January 7 and the winner announced on Friday, January 11.

The list was compiled using recommendations from 136 influential music experts, who were asked to name their three favourite new acts.

The music experts included radio DJs and producers, TV producers and music supervisors, newspaper critics, magazine and website editors and respected bloggers.



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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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It’s A Shoe In: Northants gig guide Dec 5th – Dec 11th

TC & THE BOBCATS + MATT CARTER + DAVE CLEMO & KAREN ANGELA Wednesday December 5th Rooftop Arts Centre, Corby Another Kontra Roots acoustic night. Open mic slots available between…

Wednesday December 5th
Rooftop Arts Centre, Corby
Another Kontra Roots acoustic night. Open mic slots available between acts. Doors 7.30pm, free entry

Thursday December 6th
The Carriage House, Higham Ferrers
Northampton folk-rockers take a small trip east to bring the good times. Doors 8pm, free entry

Friday December 7th
The Garibaldi Hotel, Northampton
Psych-driven fuzz four-piece from Kettering play tracks from their forthcoming LP The Velvet Night. Plus special guests, the Cambridge-based kraut-funk space rockers Psychic Lemon. Doors 8pm, free entry

Friday December 7th
The Roadmender, Northampton
Northampton’s very own small faces do the headline show thing at the Roadmender, ably supported by fellow local rock boys. Doors 7.30pm, £5 tickets

Friday December 7th
The Pomfret Arms, Northampton
Lush harmonies on the original songs of this local duo. Doors 8.30pm, free entry

Saturday December 8th
The Roadmender, Northampton
Watford-based quartet who take in a wide range of influences from reggae and ska through to punk and soul. Third album ‘Year Zero‘ came out last July. Last ShoeTown show rocked, and this will do likewise. Support from former New Street Adventure frontman. Doors 7.30pm, £13.50 tickets

Saturday December 8th
The Black Prince, Northampton [front bar]
Local, 1980s-formed anti-fascists with a nice line in rocking songs. Doors 8pm, free entry

Saturday December 8th
The Lamplighter, Northampton
Relatively new alt-rock trio bring the Xmas spirit to the Lamp. Doors 8pm, free entry

Saturday December 8th
Raff’s Bar, Wellingborough
Energetic pop-punk/emo from Kettering, alt-rock from the south-west, and “easy-core” from Newbury. Doors 7pm, £5 entry

Sunday December 9th
The Lab, Northampton
Metal night. Headliners are launching their new record When I’m Breathing Without You, with fine ShoeCounty support. Doors 7pm , £6 tickets

Sunday December 9th
The Drunken Duck, Kislingbury
Acoustic folk ambience from the Kettering-based project. Music 6.30pm-8.30pm, free entry

Tuesday December 11th
Zapato Lounge, Northampton
Get the festivities started with a mid-week song and food extravaganza. Doors 7pm, free entry




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Live review: From The Jam

From The Jam / Nine Below Zero Northampton Roadmender November 30th 2018 Some bands age like fine wine and that’s certainly the case with Nine Below Zero. Opening their set…

From The Jam / Nine Below Zero
Northampton Roadmender
November 30th 2018

Some bands age like fine wine and that’s certainly the case with Nine Below Zero. Opening their set with an energetic version of fan favourite ‘Riding on the L&N’ the band deliver a masterclass in rhythm’n’blues. ‘I’m in the Doghouse’ follows and simply swings while evergreen vocalist Dennis Greaves makes his guitar sing on a hard edged rendition of blues standard ‘Killing Floor’. With his partner-in-crime, the harmonica maestro Mark Feltham the pair have been performing together for four decades and share an obvious chemistry – as evidenced by a tight but fun rendition of ‘Tequila’. Nine Below Zero turn in a crowd pleasing, greatest hits set with ‘Wipe Away Your Kiss’ and ‘You Can’t Say Yes, You Can’t Say No’, both from their seminal Third Degree album, following in quick succession. As you’d expect a fiery run through of ‘Eleven Plus Eleven’ sets the venue alight and ensures they end on a high.

From The Jam are touring the classic All Mod Cons album to celebrate it’s fortieth anniversary. Nowadays a word like ‘classic’ is thrown around casually but All Mod Cons is certainly worthy of such a title. More than just an album it really captured the spirit of the times, both musically and lyrically, and the triumph of tonight’s show is that some of that essence is replicated. The short, sharp shock of opener ‘All Mod Cons’ is performed with the aggression it warrants, before the band ease off the throttle with ‘To Be Someone’. In the live environment it becomes evident what a kaleidoscopic album All Mod Cons is. From the power-pop of ‘David Watts’ to the neo-psychedelia of ‘The Place I Love’ to the primitive punk of ‘Billy Hunt’, From The Jam paint each song with the appropriate shade.

‘English Rose’ affords the opportunity for an acoustic interlude and the band deviate from the original track listing to include ‘Smithers Jones’ and ‘Private Hell’. The latter, when stripped bare, reveals a lyrical depth hidden in the original. Then it’s back to All Mod Cons for the Orwellian ‘A Bomb in Wardour Street’ and the poetic ‘Down in the Tube Station at Midnight’.

What follows is a ‘best of’ set full of songs that defined a generation. ‘A Town Called Malice’ turns the venue into a huge dancefloor, before we’re treated to the “too good to be a b-side” ‘The Butterfly Collector’. Vocalist Russell Hastings sounds uncannily like Paul Weller, but he still manages to impart his own stamp on proceedings. Bruce Foxton has cut down on the trademark leaps and bicycle kicks but he still turns in an energetic, lively performance and his vocal on ‘News of the World’ sounds vital and fresh.

The band return for three well-deserved encores: ‘In The City’, ‘Eton Rifles’ and a rousing ‘Going Underground’. Purists may dismiss From The Jam as a glorified tribute act (albeit with an original member), but they obviously haven’t seen the joy their performance brings. Thankfully Bruce Foxton cares enough about his past so we can relive a little of ours.

Peter Dennis

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New Music Friday: The Sunchymes

The Sunchymes is the psychedelic/power-pop project of Northamptonshire artist Aaron. Three albums over seven years have been met with much critical acclaim, and he’s back with a brand new single…

The Sunchymes is the psychedelic/power-pop project of Northamptonshire artist Aaron. Three albums over seven years have been met with much critical acclaim, and he’s back with a brand new single ‘Masquerade’. Time for a New Boots chat, then.

How did you get this project together?
I started in 2007 after a band I was in split up. I had lots of songs written and I wanted to record some albums and release them.

How/where do you record?
Mainly in my home studio.

How would you describe your sound? You had a very particular mission statement when you set out to “distill the songwriting and musical values espoused by The Beach Boys on ‘Pet Sounds’ and The Beatles on ‘Sgt Pepper'”.
My main influences are definitely The Beatles, The Beach Boys and The Byrds. I think there are influences from all these bands in my music, but with my take on those sounds.

There’s been three albums since 2009. The reaction to them has been fantastic, that must spur you on…
Yeah, it was a pleasant surprise that there are people out there that like my music. It does spur me on, but I love writing songs in any case.

You’ve dropped your toe back in the water this year with ‘Try’ and now ‘Masquerade’. Do you like this approach to putting music out, i.e. whenever you feel like it?
I do and it’s great that anyone can do this in the modern age with the likes of Bandcamp and CDBaby, etc.

What is ‘Masquerade’ about, may we ask?
It’s basically about a toxic relationship where the bad person pretends they have changed but ultimately it’s found they have not and the person is unmasked.

You began a side project last year, an indie-psych trio called The Paperweight Array. Can you tell us briefly about that, and how you approach it as a separate thing from The Sunchymes?
Yeah, I have really enjoyed doing that. I wanted to do something with a slightly darker edge, so I called up some old friends. Luckily they were up for doing the project. The Sunchymes has probably taken a back seat over the last couple of years as a result of it though.

Being a solo artist it must be tough to bring the full sonic vision to the stage?
Yeah definitely. I do solo acoustic gigs, so the songs are really stripped back. However some of them work really nicely, and it’s good to get out and play them to new audiences and meet people on the scene.

What has been your favourite Sunchymes moment to date?
That’s a difficult one. On one hand I would say recording the second album was the best time [2012’s Let Your Free Flag Fly]. On the other hand playing at the International Pop Overthrow Festival at The Cavern Club [2014] was great too.

What was the last “new” album you bought/streamed?
Cabin Life by Linus of Hollywood

What is your burning desire to do in the future? What plans do you have for 2019?
To keep writing songs, and hopefully do another album, as well as playing a few gigs.


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It’s A Shoe In: Northants gig guide Nov 28th – Dec 4th

THEE MVPs + BLOOD-VISIONS Thursday November 29th The Garibaldi Hotel, Northampton Repeatedly being called the best live band in Leeds, Thee MVPs have a pounding rhythm section, punch-to-the-gut guitars and…

Thursday November 29th
The Garibaldi Hotel, Northampton
Repeatedly being called the best live band in Leeds, Thee MVPs have a pounding rhythm section, punch-to-the-gut guitars and gusto-filled choruses. They provide rock’n’roll that’s “caked in krautrock rust, protopunk grease and ’77 powerpop spit”. Support from back-from-the-dead, revered local punkish sorts. Doors 8pm, free entry

Friday November 30th
The Black Prince, Northampton
A big bad filthy hardcore show at The Black Prince: mathcore from Corby, metalcore from Ireland, post- hardcore from NTown, digital hardcore from Rushden, and synthcore from NTown. Doors at 7pm, £4 entry

Friday November 30th
The Lab, Northampton
Hatstar has spent the last 20 years on the UK and European festival and cabaret circuit, playing the accordion and honing her own unique brand of musical entertainment. With a trio of local, ramshackle and lovable supports. Doors 8pm, £3.50 entry

72% + LDMR
Friday November 30th
The Garibaldi Hotel, Northampton
ShoeTown’s three-piece instrumental noise rockers return to the stage, with Marburg’s four-piece instrumental shoe-gaze post-rockers returning to Northampton after their triumphs at Twinfest last summer. Doors 8pm, free entry

Friday November 30th
The Yards, Kettering
Pop-punk party! Headliners from Stoke, with sumptuous ShoeCounty support. Door 7pm, free entry

Friday November 30th
The Stitching Pony, Kettering
They never know when to stop, and that’s why folk love the classic rockers. Doors 8.30pm, free entry

Friday November 30th
Manor School And Sports College, Raunds
After a period as a covers band, the youngsters release their first EP of original material today. Doors 6pm, £5 entry

Friday November 30th
The Red Lion, Raunds
Hard rock from Rugby, and grungey trio from ShoeTown. Music from 8.30pm, free entry

Saturday December 1st
The Black Prince, Northampton
Northamptonshire Health Charitable Fund is the charity that supports Northampton General Hospital and all profit from this years festival will go to the Dryden Cardiac Ward. The King Of Hearts Festival started last year in memory of Rob King. Acts this time: Century City, The Barratts, Monarchs, King Purple, Drinsipa, Jack vs Hotdog, Hyll, Corinne Lucy, LDMR, Kilamojo, and Keiron Farrow. Doors 12.30pm, £5 entry

Saturday December 1st
The Garibaldi Hotel, Northampton
A night to focus on live electronic music from NN. Doors 8pm, free entry

Saturday December 1st
The Pomfret Arms, Northampton
The hip-hop and grime night with open mic returns to the Pom. Grime cyphers with DJ Towner. Featured artistS this edition: HarQ, Reality, Anonymous, and more. Also featuring a live hip-hop band, plus a graffiti workshop. Doors 6pm, free entry

Saturday December 1st
Raff’s bar, Wellingborough
Rap-rock from Norfamtun with a scintilla of funk are your headliners, followed by an international bluesy hardcore/metal band from Leeds. Then dirty grunge from ShoeTown and opening up are a five-piece black metal band from “the sluggish pit of Northamptonshire”. Doors 6pm, £5 entry

Saturday December 1st
The Three Cocks Inn, Kettering
Urban rail punk from Brum/Northants. This show supports Family Support Link`s Christmas Toy Appeal and asks people who are attending the gig to bring a new toy or make a donation. Doors 8pm, free entry

Sunday December 2nd
The Roadmender, Northampton
The Pete’n’Dave Bauhaus roadshow returns to ShoeTown, whence it all began. The Roadmender website says sold out, but there’s a handful of tickets left on third party sites, such as here.

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New Music Friday: Corinna Jane

Corinna Jane is a singer and songwriter who did most of her growing up in Northamptonshire. Known mostly for her pop-rock style [see her ‘Hard In Love’ EP from 2015,…

Corinna Jane is a singer and songwriter who did most of her growing up in Northamptonshire. Known mostly for her pop-rock style [see her ‘Hard In Love’ EP from 2015, for example], in recent times she’s dabbled in dance music, collaborating with renowned DJ Mark ‘Oh. Their single ‘That Feeling’ has just been released, already racking up over 40,000 hits on Spotify. Time then for New Boots to catch up for a chat…

Tell us about your upbringing. How did you get into music and begin singing?
I was born in Germany and lived the until I was eight years old. My mother is French and my father is British. I think music was always going to be in my blood, particularly seen as my father named me after a Bob Dylan song called ‘Corinna Corinna’! I owe all my love for music to my father. He would play piano and we would have singsong sessions; a particular favourite was ‘Streets Of London’ by Ralph McTell, which my guitarist and I have since covered on YouTube for sentimental reasons. This is when I began to start picking out melodies by ear as a toddler. MTV and knock-off tapes from his travels to China were other contributing things that my father would subject me to. However the desire to really want to become a singer-songwriter came from having seen Sheryl Crow on MTV and wanting to be as cool as her!

How did you get to work with German producer Mark ‘Oh?
Getting to work with Mark ‘Oh was a very luck twist of fate! He and his team discovered me on Soundcloud. They found it quite amusing that they specifically wanted to get a British singer, only to find that I spent my formative years in Germany and spoke the language fluently! I was very excited to work with him, as he’s a well-known DJ out there whose career has spun over twenty years, with a few number 1’s under his belt. They flew me out a couple of times and we worked on numerous tracks (some that are yet to be released), but this one was the one that had something about it that we knew was a bit of an ear worm – or “Ohrwurm”, as the Germans say [in fact we stole that term from the Germans!]

Tell us about ‘That Feeling’.
‘That Feeling’ is a very uptempo melodic dance track. For me it was particularly enticing to work with a genre that wasn’t what I had typically done before. Usually those who follow me know me to be a piano-driven, pop-rock kind of singer songwriter, but this was tapping into a different side. Mark ‘Oh and I wrote a catchy melody and I was keen to tell a simple romantic, yet relatable story. At the time of writing it, I was quite infatuated with a guy and for me it was a song of hope and just depicting “that feeling” you get when you are falling for someone. The sense of comfort and feeling safe when you’re with them.

Will you do more of this dance-orientated work in the future do you think?
I’d love to do more dance tracks. We’ve got another track coming out in the future, but I’ve also been approached by some other DJs to work on their tracks – so it’s quite an exciting new venture!

Most favourite and least favourite thing about the Northamptonshire music scene?
My favourite thing has to be the talent there. We are actually home to a lot of talented artists like Will Rogers, Hannah Faulkner, Greg Coulson and of course Billy Lockett, who is doing tremendously well now! I guess the downside to our music scene is that there isn’t enough to cater for us. Venues have closed down, some are more like clubs now than gig venues. Plus the public need to support musicians more by actually going to the shows! I guess this is the reason why many of us, like myself, have moved to London recently to seek more opportunities.

What plans do you have for 2019?
Solo wise I will be gigging across London and releasing some unreleased material that I’ve been sitting on. I’m currently making plans to shoot a music video/short film around my song ‘The Train’ – something glamorous and cinematic. This is a seed of an idea that I’m developing with some people, which will result in a crowd funding campaign. Aside from music I’m also a travel presenter, and we are about to launch a brand new travel show – stay tuned for that!

‘That Feeling’ is out now across all digital platforms. Visit https://www.corinnajane.com

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

KARL PHILLIPS & THE REJECTS Thursday November 22nd The Three Cocks Inn, Kettering Acoustic show from the ‘Plastic Gangsta’ singer. A completely original mashup of ska, punk & grime with a hip-hop…

Thursday November 22nd
The Three Cocks Inn, Kettering
Acoustic show from the ‘Plastic Gangsta’ singer. A completely original mashup of ska, punk & grime with a hip-hop nod at luminaries like The Clash, The Specials & Mike Skinner. Karl’s refreshingly honest lyrics test the boundaries of the human mind and the English etiquette, coming from a place most people can relate to but never dare to mention. Doors 8pm, pay as you feel (suggested £4). All profits go to Johnny’s Happy Place.

Thursday November 22nd

The White Hart, Corby
Alt-country singer from London promoting his brand new, fourth, album Modern Man. Support from local alt-rockers. Doors 8pm, £9 tickets

Friday November 23rd
The Lab, Northampton
Skankdown volume 2. Unknown Era are a collective of party heads from Nottingham, mixing ska, reggae, hip-hop, and funk. Bandits!! formed in 2013 in Newbury, and bring their high energy hip-hop styled ska-punk to ShoeTown. Hinckley act open with an acoustic performance. Doors 8pm, pay as you choose entry

Friday November 23rd
The Roadmender, Northampton
Formed on Canvey Island in Essex in the early 1970’s, the Feelgoods have become one of the most popular live rhythm and blues acts in the world, enjoying a string of hit singles including ‘Milk & Alcohol’, ‘Down at the Doctors’, ‘Roxette’, ‘She’s A Wind Up’ and ‘See you later Alligator’. The current line-up is led by their drummer Kevin Morris, and features Steve Walwyn on lead guitar, Phil Mitchell on bass and charismatic vocalist, Robert Kane. Doors 7pm, £18.50 tickets

Friday November 23rd
The Yards, Kettering
Alt/indie night of four local acts. Doors 7pm , free entry

Friday November 23rd
The White Hart, Corby
After a year of solid touring around the U.K. and Europe, Sharkteeth Grinder will play their last hometown exhibition of the year. Support involves metallic hardcore out of Cork, Ireland, and a couple of local heavy hitters. Doors 8pm , £5 entry

Friday November 23rd
Althorp Coaching Inn, Great Brington
Northampton singer-songwriter of repute plays at the oldest pub in the shire. Doors 8pm, free entry

Saturday November 24th
The Roadmender, Northampton
British electronic act Blancmange first broke through in the early 1980s with their mix of synthesizers and surrealism, fused in groundbreaking singles such as ‘Feel Me’, ‘Living On The Ceiling’, ‘Blind Vision’ and ‘Don’t Tell Me’. They returned in 2011 to great acclaim, and tonight the latest album Wanderlust is launched. Support from member of the Anti-Ghost Moon Ray collective. Doors 7pm, tickets £19.50

Saturday November 24th
The Lamplighter, Northampton
Unrivalled folk-rock-dance since 2010 from the headliners. And similar from the support! Doors 8pm, free entry

Saturday November 24th
Raffs Bar, Wellingborough
Drum exclusive from Ward, plus a selection of fine singer-songwriters. Doors 6pm, £4 tickets

Saturday November 24th
The White Hart, Corby
Three piece indie rock band, The Lids have made a real name for themselves in their home town of Leicester, selling out a headline show at The Cookie. Support comes from young ShoeTown quartet who trade in fuzzy guitar psychedelic pop, and edgy guitar pop/rock from Corby itself. Doors 8pm, £4 entry

Saturday November 24th
Rushden Athletic Club
Five-piece band from Bedford who use the sounds and traditions of 1950s skiffle and combine it with the energy of punk and a splash of reggae. This is their first major headline gig in Northants. Doors 8pm, £10 tickets

Saturday November 24th
The Walnut Tree, Blisworth
Respected Northants ska-reggae outfit perform a mix of originals and old favourites. Music from 9pm, free entry

Sunday November 25th
Club 43, Northampton
One Last Daybreak are an upcoming emo/post-hardcore quintet hailing from Romford, Essex. Pop-punk and grungey local supports. Doors 7pm, £7 entry

Sunday November 25th
The Albion Brewery, Northampton
Singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist living in Sweden. Former member of Oysterband, he sings with a cello. Cooper is currently promoting third album Between The Golden Age & The Promised Land. Doors 8pm, £12 entry

Sunday November 25th
The Garibaldi Hotel, Northampton
Londoner George returns for his first ShoeTown show in three years. Doors 8pm, free entry

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