Tag: northamptonshire

New Music Friday: Ashborn

Northampton metallers Ashborn – Marcin D on vocals, Mietek on guitar, Peter on bass, and Marcin K on drums – are preparing for the release of their debut album Awakening….

Northampton metallers Ashborn – Marcin D on vocals, Mietek on guitar, Peter on bass, and Marcin K on drums – are preparing for the release of their debut album Awakening. New Herculean single ‘Light That Creates Darkness’ precedes it. Following their recent well-received HOP Fest appearance, New Boots spoke to Marcin D to get the lowdown.

How/when did you guys get together?
We have been together since December 2017. We met before playing some gigs together in previous bands. 

How would you describe your sound? Who are your main influences in music?
We are trying not to copy anyone, but obviously we will sound similar to some bands. I don’t really want to mention any bands. I will leave it to listeners. 

What was the reaction like to your demo EP from last year?
The reaction was really really good. We did get lots of messages and comments from people saying that they like our music. It was similar to our Metal 2 The Masses win from last year. Not many people knew us then. We played, I think, two gigs before entering the competition. It was kind of surprise for some people.

Tell us about this new single, ‘Light That Creates Darkness’.
First thing that is really unusual for us is the fact that the lyric to this song has been written by our drummer Marcin [Ozzy], not myself. He did really good job. In a few words, the song is about nuclear weapons. Not really about political side of the attack, but more about consequences. How much it can destroy and how much pain it can bring.

What are your live shows like for those that haven’t seen you?
We have a lot of energy! We’re a never ending head-bang! We do love playing gigs and I think people on front of stage can feel that. Northamptonshire is very strong in metal music, and we are so proud to be part of it. 

What can you tell us about the debut album?
We did the best what we could. The songs are going to be a bit different from each other, so people shouldn’t get bored while listen to it. It’s going to be heavy! Probably one of the best albums of 2019, hehe, 

What has been your favourite band moment of the past year?
Winning Metal 2 The Masses and playing Bloodstock Open Air! But we are enjoying pretty much every moment of being in this band.

Who are you currently listening to?
I’ve been listening to [American death metallers] Deicide quite a lot recently. I do listen to lots of different music and bands. 

What is your burning desire for the band to do in the future?
We are trying to get better and better so we can play bigger shows. Also we will try to get to the bigger festivals as well. Promoting our album as much as possible.

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It’s A Shoe In: Northants gig guide Jul 17th – Jul 23rd

THE PHYSICS HOUSE BAND + LAPYEAR Thursday July 18th The Garibaldi Hotel, Northampton Brighton quartet who create avant-garde compositions that capture everything from jazz to prog to psych to doom-metal,…

THE PHYSICS HOUSE BAND + LAPYEAR
Thursday July 18th
The Garibaldi Hotel, Northampton
Brighton quartet who create avant-garde compositions that capture everything from jazz to prog to psych to doom-metal, all combined together with a furious energy  Playing some songs fro their recently completed third record. Lapyear meanwhile are an alternative/indie pop band from London. Doors 7.30pm, free entry

THE WILDE + AXIS ERAZED
Thursday July 18th
The King Billy, Northampton
Loud, raucous rock’n’roll, with a Motown groove. Support comes from ShoeTown’s “female-fronted metal-rock, industro-pop” band. Doors 8pm, free entry

LAY IT DOWN
Friday July 19th
The Lab, Northampton
Urban music night involving rappers, instrumentalists, spoken word, poetry. Plenty of spots open to the public early on, plus confirmed performances from Thunder, Reality, Smiley, Infinite Lore, and many more. Doors 8pm, free entry

BLOOD-VISIONS + BIG LOSS
Friday July 19th
The Garibaldi Hotel, Northampton
NN alt-rock heroes and no mistake are your main draw. Support from local trio, all of whom are ex-members of My First Tooth. Doors 8pm, free entry

LIVING COLOUR + CATS IN SPACE + JARED NICHOLS JAMES
Saturday July 20th
The Roadmender, Northampton
NYC jazz-rockers performing their iconic 1988 debut album Vivid, plus other hits. Stellar support too. Doors 7pm, £28 tickets

AMONGST THIEVES + RXPTRS + WHEN WE WAKE
Saturday July 20th
The Golden Horse, Northampton
Quality metal co-headline from the south-west and York, with Luton easycore quartet opening. Doors 7.30pm, free entry

FLYBYFEST
Saturday July 20th
Coronation Park Pavilion, Corby
A one day music event brought to you by Flybybars. Alt-funk from Supergiant, loungey indie from Baby Lung, plus ExP and Versatile, Seniorem & Dukebox, DJ O.P.1, and R U INDIE all on the decks. Doors midday, £5 tickets

TU-KAY & RYAN
Saturday July 20th
The Shire Horse, Kettering
Harmonious duo bring the good vibes for the afternoon. 3-6pm, free entry

EMPYRE [acoustic]
Sunday July 21st
The Black Prince, Northampton
Sunday Afternoon Acoustic Session, with local Self Aware rockers doing their thing in an acoustic fashion. Plus open mic spots beforehand. 3pm-6pm, free entry

DAMN TEETH + ROLLING THUNDER
Sunday July 21st
The Pomfret Arms, Northampton
Glasgow group featuring current and ex-members of Thin Privilege, Black International and Joanna Gruesome, Damn Teeth produce a synth-heavy sound that touches on the dance-noise of Six Finger Satellite, the melodic hysteria of Xiu Xiu and the pop sensibilities of LCD Soundsystem gone sour. Support from new Towcester indie rockers. Doors 7pm, free entry

DEAD FREQUENCY + CRASH INDUCTION
Sunday July 21st
The King Billy, Northampton
Daventry pop-punk trio and MK punk-party starters to enliven your Sunday arfternoon. Doors 4pm, £5 entry

 

 

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New Music Friday: Dizmack

Northampton rapper Dizmack returns to the fold after a short break with perhaps his most interesting work yet, and there’s plenty more to come. Strap yourself in for an in-depth…

Northampton rapper Dizmack returns to the fold after a short break with perhaps his most interesting work yet, and there’s plenty more to come. Strap yourself in for an in-depth interview; trust us, it’s worth it.

How would you describe your sound in 2019?
I’d like to think I’m still making lyrical, meaningful, I’d say emo music. Its still very truthful and personal. I couldn’t really put it into a genre, as I feel like I’m make so much different kind of sounds. It’s a bit difficult to put under a genre. I’m influenced by all sorts. I don’t tend to listen to grime or hip hop, I’m more into bands and indie music. Anything with feeling. I try and just create good music really: go into the studio and see how I’m feeling and whatever the vibe is that day work with it, and try and come out of my comfort zone. The new songs are quite melodic, the format is in a more traditional song format, what with loads of pre-hooks, post bridges, stuff like that.

What’s influencing you the most right now?
Just life really. I live a very unconventional life. I deal with ADHD and Aspergers on the day-to-day, but then I’m a practitioner of Chinese medicine working towards my doctorate. And then I get to live a bit of a musician’s lifestyle, so between those three elements it gives me all the ingredients I need to cook up my music.

The ‘Spectrum’ EP from 2017 was a big moment for you, musically and emotionally. How did you feel after its release? Did it get a strong reception?
That’s really personal for me. It’s kind of a life changer really, because it was my first proper release that I’ve been working towards for a while. It was the end of a chapter and the start of a new one. I lost my grandma a week or so before it was released. Then it was released on the anniversary of my grandfather’s death. Because it came out the worst time: Christmas, getting prepared for the funeral, and burying my grandmother. There’s a lot of emotions. Plus ‘Spectrum’ is about me being on the autistic spectrum. I was just going to the studio and cashing in on my moods really. I didn’t really have a plan. There wasn’t a direction for the project. It was like “well I’m going through this, this down feeling today, let’s document it”. Because my moods are so all over the place, it’s kind of crazy. I could be happy this morning and then proper emotional later. It was interesting making it. It helped me grow a lot. It was good to touch on certain things, and get certain things off my chest, and put it out in the open. It helps coming to terms with getting the diagnosis of having Aspergers and ADHD. It took a lot out of me. But it needed to be done, because I had so much to touch on and music I wanted to make. I felt like until I touched on certain things it was never going to happen. It was very emotional; good and bad. It just came such an unfortunate time. There was a lot going on and it summed up how my life was and all of the stuff going on. I say on ‘How About That’ “I’m both happy and sad”. That sums that up. I was going through some of my hardest times of my life, but then I achieve something that I wanted to achieve for a while, and really worked hard to do it. I feel like I did achieve that. It’s hard to be happy about something when such a big event happens in your life, and it puts everything into perspective. But it kept me going. Soon as I got that out I finish my follow up EP a couple of weeks later, which I have been sitting on for a while. It set the tone for that because the next one is ‘357’, which is the acupuncture formula for emotions. It’s quite fitting. It’s funny how universe, God or whatever you believe in kinda gives you all the ingredients and aids you on your journey. I think it was more of a case I’d finally done it, and people were happy that I got it out and there’s a body of work for them to listen to. I can’t complain. It showed me that I’m doing what I should be doing and I need to keep at it. Plus ‘Spectrum’ is 1 of 3: the plan was to do three projects in the year. Put them all together and you’ve got an album, so I’m keen to get the other two parts out that have been recorded for over a year now. Hopefully by the time you get the third project you see the bigger picture, and it will all make more sense.

Fellow NNer Izzie Gibbs is a regular collaborator, you both appearing on the Foreign Beggars tune ‘Toast’ last year. Tell us about that relationship.
He’s actually my younger cousin, so we’re always on the phone, always creating. He’s currently producing an EP for me now. We’ve got a few things in the works. I worked on his last EP. It’s always great to have a family member you get along well with. Plus we’re both on the same things, we are both very similar.  We’ve got a collective called Camotage. When we do our things we roll under the name Two. We are working on a joint project called The Amazing Adventures of Two, which will be him and I. It’s been fun. Obviously I’m on the road with him, gigging with him a lot. He took me to America to do South By Southwest. That was great. He’s took me on loads of tour dates: Bugzy Malone, V Fest, the lot. I’ve got to touch many stages with him. We’re constantly talking about ideas, sending each other references: what we like, what we should do. His basically the little brother I never had. And I’d like to think I’m the older brother he never had. We are so tight, to the point that we’re on the verge of communicating via telekinesis and telepathy because we just seem to get it. We can look each other and we both know what we’re on about. He’s a blessing, he’s an amazing artist. The best little brother I could ask for, and a good friend. Definitely someone I can turn to. It was great to appear last year on the Foreign Beggars album, and Big Narstie’s. Obviously we did the Channel 4 Big Narstie Show together and performed the track. I couldn’t ask for a better relationship, nor I couldn’t be any tighter. Hopefully there’s a lot of great music to come from both of us this year; it’s only going to get bigger and better.

You’ve had some changes on the backroom side of things, which has hampered you releasing new music. What can you tell us about that? What have you learnt?
Life is full of surprises for me. I’m constantly learning. Finding out more about myself and life. I’ve learnt loads about the music industry, and being on a label. There was no problem on the label side of things, they’re like family. Big Narstie is one of my best friends, so it’s all love there. I’ve just realised that what with my life and having Aspergers and ADHD I just like to have things a certain way. I like to have control and to be able to implement my vision. I’ve noticed sometimes on a label, or whatever, you have to deal with outside people who don’t always get it. People can’t see your vision. I know what I want to do, from start to finish: how I want it to be presented, and what I’m aiming for. I found it difficult waiting: making so much music, waiting and then getting things done. I don’t think people saw my vision, and knew want to do with me, or where to put me. I just thought I know what I want to do, I know where I want to go. I’m capable of doing it. I’ve got a lot of music, so let’s just try and do this my way and have full control over it. I’d much rather that than try and do it a way I’m not fully comfortable with, and that doesn’t work out. I’ve got nothing bad to say about my situation. It just wasn’t working for me and how my life is set up at the moment. I just wanted to be more of myself, and embrace the weird side of me. I’m a proper artist, and I’m not really interested in image and all the other stuff. I’m about making quality music with meaning, and getting it out there. Everything else is secondary. It’s all love. Big up to everybody at Dice Records. I’m grateful for the opportunities I’ve had. I’ve got good memories. I’ve got to do some great stuff that wouldn’t have got to do otherwise. I wish everybody the best, and hopefully my thing goes from strength to strength now, even though it may be a bit different and a bit weird to some people. I think that’s a good thing, because it’s unique and that’s who I am. So I can’t do anything better than by being me, and doing things my way.

Tell us everything about these new songs, ‘Leanface’ and ‘Stress/Basic Procedure’.
The new singles are quite old actually, recorded almost two years ago now. It was just music from the sessions I’ve been doing that I hadn’t done stuff with. Obviously with my odd situation certain things are meant to go a certain way. It didn’t turn out like that, and and I have ended up sitting on a lot of music that I want out before I push these next EPs out. There’s no time like the present really. ‘Leanface’ was produced by Izzie Gibbs and Spooksville. Trolley Snatcha brought it all together with a final mix and some arrangements, adding a few sounds here and there. ‘Leanface’ is about THC or CBD-based syrup that I drink to help manage my Aspergers. Obviously there’s a big thing going on about Lean, which is made with promethazine and codeine. I’m not for any of those kind of things. I like to keep it natural. I don’t take medication for my conditions, and I find that cannabis and CBD helps, so it’s about me being a bit of a herbalist.
‘Stress/Basic Procedure’ is a weird one. I was actually at my cousin’s funeral, and I came home still drinking. I’ve had a couple of bottles of champagne; I ended up playing Monopoly with a friend all night. Then still being drunk and going to the studio, and just continuing drinking. I had a song that I was working on that I was struggling to finish. A kind had a bit of a meltdown, what with my emotions being high, I got a bit tearful. Then obviously I felt stress. I made a phone call to one of my friends, and he was basically like “suck it up, go in there and make something new”. So it was just kind of messing about, playing with sounds and what not. So I got ‘Stress’ locked in, then I started working on something else. This time I was so drunk I could barely stand up, and that turned out to be Basic Procedure. Trolley Snatcha was playing the beat, and I was just freestyling. I didn’t write a word for that. We freestyled and dropped in and and ended up with that. I thought they complemented each other, so let’s give them a two-in-one.
We are using them to try and build up a bit of momentum into this next EP. So I’ve got a few more tracks to come out and then we can start with ‘357’.

Obviously people like slowthai and Izzie are doing great things locally. But any brand new producers or MCs in Northamptonshire that you rate, that you want to give a shout out to?
I’m out of the loop with who’s coming out of Northampton at the moment. I like DeBe, he’s got a lot of stuff going on. I follow the Northampton band scene to be honest, I’ve got a lot of friends in bands. I’d say Born Stranger and Kinships are favourites. Rest In Peace to Matthew King and Daniel Padmore; they were both musicians I had the pleasure of working with, and friends of mine.
It would be the same people that I have always known, like your Ill Murk and Jam D and CP. Audio Nurks, he’s got a nice project coming out soon. He would be a good one to watch. I quite like Weirdoe and Samuel Lox, I like their sound and what they’re doing. Also you got producers like Harlz and Spooksville. Oh and Kaotic, my favourite lyricist and brother from another mother. We’ve been through a lot together and he’s a genius when it comes to music. Slowthai and Izzy are flying the flag really hard, so props to those two – they’re doing their thing.

How’s the acupuncture going?
It’s going great. I’m a fully qualified acupuncturist. Just about to start my masters and work towards my doctorate. So hopefully once I go back to that it will be two years, and then I will be a fully qualified doctor of Oriental medicine, which I’m excited about because I love acupuncture. I’m getting great results: it helps a lot to feel like I’m able to give back. I’ve got something of substance that actually means something, and can make a difference in not only my life but the people around me. Health is wealth. Plus I’ve got loads of knowledge, loads of stuff that will serve me for my lifetime, and serve my friends and families. It’s helped with the diet. Plus it’s the way I manage my own condition. I don’t take medication. That’s where ‘357’ comes from, it’s the acupuncture formula for emotions. That’s the name of the EP coming next. Acupuncture is one of the best things I’ve ever done. I’m hoping to have a clinic in due time. That’s part of the bigger plan. Just keep going on from strength to strength. I went back to be a supervisor this year, I’m going to be a lecturer. I’ve also been esquire-ing for the Knights of Truth this last year. So I believe I will be knighted in October. It’s crazy; I think back five years ago and I was the patient going to get assessed for mental health reasons. And now I’m practically a doctor, and managing myself. I’m my own GP, and I take care of my family and all of that. I take the most pride in that, because I started it when I was in a really bad place and I struggled. At times I thought my life was going nowhere. So to go through it and come out the other side and build on it and now taking it to even higher levels is is a big thing for me. Plus I was recording the music at the same time. I’ve really applied myself in the last few years to get this stuff done, and fix up my life in all areas. I’m just grateful and thankful that I didn’t mess my life up too badly, and had the opportunity to redeem myself and right the wrongs.

What is your burning desire to do in the future? What plans do you have?
To show the world how good I am. And how the high standard of music is, the levels that I work at. I have a really good understanding of it. In all areas, not just personal stuff. Stuff I can work on with other people, the writing stuff. I definitely want to have a career and get all my projects out, and be consistent and deliver. I feel like I’ve got a lot of people waiting on my music, and asking for stuff and what not. Now I just want to get it done. Get that out, get my doctorate, get a clinic. Try and merge the music and medicine together. The EP series seemed to do well. I’m a big advocate for mental health. Just trying to do right, be a good responsible adult. An upstanding member of the community. Do my charity work for the Knight’s stuff. I would like to get to the position where I can actually do some stuff, where I’ve got money and backing. I could do stuff for other people, for the Next Generation. whether it’s music or medicine. Youth club, whatever. I just want to be able to make a difference. Give back to NN, make it cool. And just live a full life. Be a nice person. Get my music out to as many people as I can. Do some features. Try and see how far we can take it. I definitely want to be doing some live shows. I just want to get these next projects out, and start some new material. See where we are at. Then hopefully aim for a headline show. I believe I will probably be going on tour with Izzie when he does his tour. Right about now it’s just about getting the music out, the visuals out, and trying to work to the level where I can do my own headline show, and start doing something a little different because I’ve got so much music that covers a few different genres and styles. I’d like to be able to breakout an hour set into three 20 minutes. Give them some of the jump up, give them some emotive stuff, meaningful stuff. Then probably do some stuff with a band. That’s the ideal vision of my show, how to break it down. I’d also like to do a documentary series called Travelling The Orient, where I travel the Oriental cultures. Cover music, medicine, martial arts, fashion. I see it as a Vice style kind of thing. Go out there and bring a few friends, maybe Izzie and Big Narstie covering all areas. But base it around medicine and then try and build from there. I’d love to end up as a celebrity acupuncturist. Trying to get my music into a state where I’m recognised for that. And then cross it over and be like a Dr Hilary Jones type fella.

‘Stress/Basic Procedure‘ is out now via the usual digital platforms

 

 

 

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It’s A Shoe In: Northants gig guide Jul 10th – Jul 16th

DON GALLARDO Thursday July 11th Little Country Smokehouse & General Store, Cransley Nashville-based singer-songwriter playing Americana/country/folk, with four albums to his name. Doors 8pm, £10 tickets NO WORTH OF MAN…

DON GALLARDO
Thursday July 11th
Little Country Smokehouse & General Store, Cransley
Nashville-based singer-songwriter playing Americana/country/folk, with four albums to his name. Doors 8pm, £10 tickets

NO WORTH OF MAN + aAnd? + DEVASTATOR + PRIMAL HOLOCAUST + ORKA
Friday July 12th
The Black Prince, Northampton
Funk-infused metal hailing from Farnborough, deathcore from Bournemouth, speed metal from Derby, plus NN stalwarts. Doors 6pm, £6 tickets

KETTFEST
Friday July 12th – Saturday July 13th
Various locations, Kettering
Annual creative arts celebration over two evenings in various venues. The Shire Horse has JD Blues, Stuart O’Connor, and The FeversThe Three Cocks has Midnight Honey Club and The Abrahams. There’s probably more too, we just can’t find it right now. http://www.kettfest.org

DAXTONBURY FESTIVAL
Friday July 12th – Sunday July 14th
Airfield Road, Podington [nr Rushden]
Located on farmland just beyond Santa Pod Raceway, 30 acts plays, including Electric Black, Naked Next Door, Saving Amy, The Boston Shakers, The Expletives, and many more. Day tickets are £15, weekend £40

ECTON INTERNATIONAL MUSIC FESTIVAL
Friday July 12th – Sunday July 14th
The Three Horseshoes, Ecton
Live sets from Fargo Railroad Co., The Vincent Vega Band, Stone Mountain Sinners, and Massy Ferguson. There’s food too. Free entry

SILVERSTONE WOODLANDS
Friday July 12th – Sunday July 14th
Silverstone Racing Circuit
The British Grand Prix has plenty of entertainment on offer outside the racing, including music. Ska Face and Candidates play the main stage, among others. The Under The Apple Tree area is curated by Northampton’s very own Whisperer, Bob Harris. Foreign Affairs, Howard Rose, Blue Highways, Curse Of Lono, Clara Bond, Harry Pane, Robert J Hunter Band, Izzie Walsh, and Loud Mountains all play there. Entry to the whole thing is £75

NN LOCALS MARKET
Saturday July 13th
NN Contemporary Art Courtyard, Northampton
Level Records & Hometown Projects present a day of local businesses, artists and music to celebrate all things NN. 12 hours of music, including DJ sets and live electronic performances from Soul Groove and Makobi. The day will include food, art/craft stalls and live art. From 11am, free entry

ACOLYTES + SHARKTEETH GRINDER + BERMUDA
Saturday July 13th
The Garibaldi Hotel, Northampton
The first New Music Friday feature we did was in January 2018 with this Rushden lot. The honour must have weighed so heavy, as they pretty much did nothing since then, and are now doing a farewell show. Balls. Support from Corby hardcore sexiness, plus long-presumed-dead experimental funkers from ShoeTown. Attendance is compulsory. Doors 8pm, free entry

PAT FISH
Saturday July 13th
The Black Prince, Northampton
He’s not dead yet! The man they call the Jazz Butcher has been enlivening these parts for many a year, and it’s never nothing short of wholly engaging. Doors 8pm, free entry

THE BLACKHEART ORCHESTRA
Saturday July 13th
The Sargeant Memorial Hall, Brafield-On-The-Green
Proggy Mancunian duo with lots of press praise. The band “blend musical styles in a non-conformist way seamlessly sidestepping boundaries to create their unique classically driven, emotion-drenched music”. Doors 7pm, £10 tickets

BISONS + CANYONS
Saturday July 13th
The Lamplighter, Northampton
Double feature of gritty and woozy alt/country/folk/rock from NN types who have a bit of experience at this sort of thing. Doors 8pm, free entry

WELLINGBOROUGH DIGGERS FESTIVAL
Saturday July 13th
Old Grammarians Sports Field, Wellingborough
A celebration of “the Poor Inhabitants of the Town of Wellinborrow”. Appearing: Renaissancecore and Baroque ‘n’ Roll with Barnstormer 1649 [feat Attila The Stockbroker], The Blue Foundation, rockin blues and Americana with Dawson Smith & The Dissenters, and local young ‘uns A Time Of Day. Doors 5.30pm, £10 tickets

HAZEYJANE
Saturday July 13th
Kettering Library
The local folkies will be playing two 45 minute sets. The band will be in quartet format with Chris, Kev, Steve and Anna. Doors 7.30pm

SOAP GIRLS + DIVERSION
Sunday July 14th
The King Billy, Northampton
Real, raw and revealing rock’n’roll from the popular sister duo. Support from Bedford punks. Doors 4pm, £5 entry

 

 

 

 

 

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Album review: Empyre

EMPYRE Self Aware [self-released] The opening track ‘My Bad’ sets out the template for the debut by this Northampton quartet and their wrought, minor-chord melodrama of a debut album. Solid…

EMPYRE
Self Aware [self-released]

The opening track ‘My Bad’ sets out the template for the debut by this Northampton quartet and their wrought, minor-chord melodrama of a debut album. Solid and thick rhythms; crunchy blues-metal riffs, intense-yet-introspective lyrics sung by front-man Henrik Steenholdt. Self Aware is not something that’s ever going to wash over you in the background.

Taking their cues from the likes of Alice in Chains and Stone Temple Pilots, with occasional forays into Muse-like bombast, Self Aware is a thrilling and atmospheric ride to be on. Recent single New ‘Republic’ is the first heads-down rocker to come along, cruising confidently on those Soundgarden-style verses and Metallica vocal workouts. 

A band that’s no stranger to accomplished and almost progressive songwriting ideas, they aren’t afraid to be bold when they need to, as ‘Just A Ride’ with it’s gentle feedback passages, ably demonstrates. But then ‘Too Close’ shows they are able to be just as melodic as any classic band you care to name. Steenholdt’s wail on the latter is something to truly behold too, holding long notes with aplomb.  

‘Drive’ perhaps sees them coming too close to aping their heroes, not offering the originality that’s clearly evident elsewhere on the album.  It’s the mid album dip I guess; same applies to ‘Only Way Out’. ‘Cut To The Core’ though has a touch of the pop-punk in its rhythm, and it suits them well. The previous single, the catchy and hard-hitting ‘Too Little Too Late’, is the one to ease yourself into their world; the drums cut hard, as do the lyrics. By the time the finale, the atmospheric and epic grunge workout ‘Homegrown’, finishes you do feel emotionally exhausted, but in the best way possible.

A hard-working band, the general buzz around Empyre is there for good reason. They come alive in the gig environment, and they’ve done a great job of getting that energy in the studio across these eleven tracks, whilst still adding enough texture to warrant repeat plays. If you like your hard rock with some proggy bites then Self Aware really should be happy nestling in your collection very soon.

Phil Moore

Self Aware is out now

 

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New Music Friday: Greasy Diablos

Visceral rock’n’roll will never go out of fashion, and from Rushden come riding those Greasy Diablos to provide some. Back in the saddle for 2019 with new single ‘Sarah’s Nose’,…

Visceral rock’n’roll will never go out of fashion, and from Rushden come riding those Greasy Diablos to provide some. Back in the saddle for 2019 with new single ‘Sarah’s Nose’, New Boots spoke to singer Matt Bland and guitarist Ian Marshall.

How did you guys get together?
Matt: Difficult to pinpoint really; I would say around 2010. I  joined after spending many of my youthful years as a drum & bass MC. I fell out of love with the scene and wanted to do something different. I knew Ian through BMX when we were younger, I found out he had a band; that was it. Dan Stocker was destined to be in the Diablos, and Matt on bass we met through the local music scene around Rushden.

How would you describe your sound? Who are your main influences in music?
Matt: Definitely not happy hardcore, definitely not jazz. Its Rock & Roll, its Greasy Diablos!

You had a busy 2017 and then took a break in 2018, and are now back strong gigging again in 2019. Has the break recharged the batteries?
Matt: Rotation of band members didn’t help, that’s probably been more stressful than doing gigs and travelling etc. Now though we have commitment to the cause, so 2019/2020 is looking good and hopefully we can do a lot more festivals and further afield gigs.

Tell us everything about this corking new single, ‘Sarah’s Nose’.
Matt: I believe in all music and arts it’s best to leave to the listener’s interpretations. If you force a subject to strongly it ruins the fluidity of the ride. It’s Rock n’ Roll, and I hope you like it.
Ian: I’d been listening to a lot of old Chicago blues scene stuff from the 60’s, had bit of the riff and Stocker and myself went to the Bunker [our man cave] and finished it off roughly lay-out wise. We took it to practice and Bland was straight on it. It came together really quickly after that! I really enjoy playing it live as has good energy and bounce to it; also everyone loves a story!

Describe the Greasy Diablos live show in less than five words?
Loud, filthy, greasy Rock’nRoll!

Are you part of a wider scene in Northamptonshire, playing with like-minded bands? Any favourite bands/venues/people you wanna give a shout out to?
Matt: We live on the Northants/Beds border and other than SBD Promotions we have mainly been supported from the Bedford side of things- The Pad Presents guys. As gigs go supporting The Spitfires at The Picturedrome was a great night, and with Salpa Sulpa at Roadmender also. Shout outs to Garden, Type 22, and Kenneth J Nash.

What has been your favourite band moment of the past year?
Matt: Getting over 5,000 hits of ‘Sarah’s Nose’ the first week on Spotify.

What was the last album you bought/streamed?
Matt: The Kumari [self-titled] – shout out to them, great band.

What is your burning desire for the band to do in the future? What plans do you have?
Ian: Get more of our songs recorded and released. I would love to play some iconic festivals next year; the smallest stage will be fine!
Matt: Enjoy ourselves & be happy! Keep progressing: new songs, and getting them out there.

Sarah’s Nose is out now via the usual digital platforms

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It’s A Shoe In: Northants gig guide Jul 3rd – Jul 9th

SUNSINGER & THE HIGH SEAS + PHIL DOLEMAN + KENNETH J NASH Wednesday July 3rd The Rooftrop Arts Centre, Corby Bedford Americana headliner, plus ukulele virtuoso, playing roots/jazz, and opened…

SUNSINGER & THE HIGH SEAS + PHIL DOLEMAN + KENNETH J NASH
Wednesday July 3rd
The Rooftrop Arts Centre, Corby
Bedford Americana headliner, plus ukulele virtuoso, playing roots/jazz, and opened by one of Northants’ most distinguished singer-songwriters. Open mic slots available between acts. Doors 7.30pm, free entry

THE HERRON BROTHERS
Thursday July 4th
Albion Brewery Bar, Northampton
To promote the release of their new EP ‘The Next Ones’, The Herron Brothers will be touring an intimate, “two voices, two acoustic guitars” show. From 8.30pm, free entry

MUNDAYS + KIAN RUSSELL + TRAGIC
Friday July 5th
The Lab, Northampton
The local stoner rockers Mundays are relocating to Leeds [boo!], so one last chance to wish them well. Bluesmen Russell wowed everyone at the Northampton Music Festival, and here’s another chance to see him in ShoeTown. Teenage punky types open proceedings. Doors 8pm, £5 entry

REPRO JAM SQUAD + P-HEX + LITTLE BITBOY
Friday July 5th
The Pomfret Arms, Northampton
Get ready to be funked up! Funk fusion, baggy funk, and a lil’ bit of Chiptune at the start. Mega! Doors 7pm, free entry

TANNERFEST
Friday July 5th – Saturday July 6th
Loddington Grange, Cransley
The long-running “best party ever”. Main stage acts on Friday are Family of Noise, Unorfadox, Thee Telepaths, Yur Mum, and Electric Cake Salad. Wildfire Sessions stage is Stevie Jones, Wildflower Rogue, Doz, Ideal Forgery, and The Brandy Thieves. On the Saturday Main Stage you get The Abrahams, Jouska, Leisure Tank, Orange Clocks, Sacred Geometry, Spirits of the Earth, Paradise 9, Flutatious, and The Ukrainians; Wildfire Sessions stage involves Steve Birks, Markus Reeves Brotherhood, John Gibbs, Monica and The Explosion, Rob Matheson, JD Blues, Kenneth J Nash Band, Jess Orestano, Paul Henshaw, Modern Age, and Jono and the Uke Dealers.  Tickets are £31 for the weekend.

SKIRT + BENNY P
Friday July 5th
The KK Club, Corby
Birthday special from the spiky indie kings and queens of the Corby underground. Rapper in support. Doors 8pm, £5 tickets

NORTHAMPTON TOWN FESTIVAL
Saturday July 6th – Sunday July 7th
The Racecourse, Northampton
The annual town festival always has a music stage. This year catch Repro Jam Squad, Future Love, GoGo Loco, [sane], Bushpigs, Pure Genius, Ash Tu-Kay, Dee-Ja Vu, and Deep Sea Mountains on the Saturday. Then it’s The 2 Tones, Lunaxis, James Watts & The Avenues, The Very Lazy Sundays, Canyons, and Similar Jones on Sunday. Doors 11am, music from 1pm. Free entry

BOSS CAINE + ODDITY ISLAND
Saturday July 6th
The Shire Horse, Kettering
Americana in the evening, indie psych/folk in the daytime session. The latter is 3-6pm, the evening session begins at 9pm. Free entry

LUNAXIS + JESS ORESTRANO
Saturday July 6th
Coach And Horses, Wellingborough
ShoeTown dwelling, folk and blues-influenced, festival-vibed indie pop from Carly and her gang. Support from NN singer-songwriter at this Retro-Beat night. Doors 8pm, free entry

ARNOCORPS
Monday July 8th
The Lab, Northampton
Heroic Proportion Tour Launch Party. The San Fran Bay Area band take ancient Austrian myths such as “Predator,” “Commando,” “Terminator” and “Total Recall” and set them to a sonic onslaught known as action-adventure hardcore rock ‘n’ roll. For nearly 20 years the anti-Austroploitation combatants continue to garner international critical acclaim for their inclusive and empowering live performances. Doors 7pm, tickets £10

 

 

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New Music Friday: Krysthla

Emerging in 2012 from the ashes of Gutworm, Krysthla bring you intense heavy metal, emanating from the Wellingborough area. They released their debut full length album, A War Of Souls…

Emerging in 2012 from the ashes of Gutworm, Krysthla bring you intense heavy metal, emanating from the Wellingborough area. They released their debut full length album, A War Of Souls And Desires, in September 2015, and speedily following it up in 2017 with Peace In Our Time. Krysthla’s powerhouse delivery is brought by Adi Mayes [vocals], Neil Hudson [guitars], Carl Davis [bass], Noel Davis [guitars], and Wayne Minney [drums]. On the verge of album number three coming out New Boots shares the new video for single ‘Zero Sum Game’, and spoke to bassist Carl for more juice.

How would you describe your sound, and how has it evolved over the three album cycle?
It’s basically the groovy end of extreme metal. The sound has evolved over the albums and we’ve introduced more melody, texture and layers as we’ve progressed.

What was the reaction like to the last album from 2017, ‘Peace In Our Time’? You seem to have gotten great press and radio support.
The reaction was amazing. To be sat at number two in the Amazon rock and metal charts was pretty mind blowing. We received some great reviews, and the support from the industry and the fans has been great all along.

Tell us about this new single, ‘Zero Sum Game’. Who directed the video?
‘Zero Sum Game’ is about life, death and everything in the middle. The constant pursuit of a way of life that ultimately doesn’t fulfil yourself, either emotionally or spiritually. The video was directed by Josh Gurner from Hacktivist. He did a great job.

What can we expect from album number three, Worldwide Negative?
It’s another progression and it’s a darker album than the first two. There’s a lot of personal elements and it’s probably more relatable to the average person. It’s going to be heavy. Very heavy.

You are a strong part of the music scene in Northamptonshire. Any favourite bands/venues/people you wanna give a shout out to?
The Northampton scene is very strong at the moment and there’s loads of great bands. From Eden to Exile are one of our favourites.

Looking forward to Bloodstock 2019? Have you played before? What other festivals do you love to play?
Yes we played with Gutworm back in 2004 and Adi played with Deadeye in 2005. We played it with Krysthla in 2016. It’s an amazing festival and we can’t wait to hit up the main stage. We are also playing HRH Metal in February [in Birmingham].

What was the last album you bought/streamed?
Adi and I both bought the new Wildhearts album. It’s a great straight up rock record. The latest Vola album Applause Of A Distant Crowd is awesome too.

What is your burning desire for the band to do in the future after the album is out? What plans do you have?
We’d still love to play Donnington as that’s a box we’ve not ticked as yet. The plan is to spread our wings and hit as many cities as possible. There’s plenty of countries that we are still to cover so we’ll be back on the road in support of the release that’s for sure.

Zero Sun Game’ is out now via the usual digital/streaming platforms. Worldwide Negative is out August 16th

Krysthla live this summer:

13th July – WOLVERHAMPTON, The Giffard Arms
20th July – AMPLIFIED FESTIVAL, Eastington
10th Aug – BLOODSTOCK OPEN AIR (Mainstage), Catton
25th Aug – NOTTINGHAM, Ye Olde Salutation Inn
27th Sept – GLASGOW, Nice N’ Sleazy
28th Sept – DUNDEE, Hordes X
29th Sept – INVERNESS, The Market Bar

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It’s A Shoe In: Northants gig guide Jun 26th – Jul 2nd

THE DEAD SOUTH + NOBLE JACKS Wednesday June 26th The Roadmender, Northampton Four hatted, hairy and bearded Canadian fellas. Neo-folk/bluegrass/alternative country fulfilled with sophomore album Illusion & Doubt. Doors 7pm,…

THE DEAD SOUTH + NOBLE JACKS
Wednesday June 26th
The Roadmender, Northampton
Four hatted, hairy and bearded Canadian fellas. Neo-folk/bluegrass/alternative country fulfilled with sophomore album Illusion & Doubt. Doors 7pm, £20 tickets

MARA + STEREO SKULL + PRIMAL HOLOCAUST
Thursday June 27th
The King Billy, Northampton
Metal super group from Latvia/Germany headline, plus Death/prog metal and black metal from Northants in support. Doors 7pm, free entry

HOP FEST
Friday June 28th – Sunday June 30th
The Black Prince, Northampton
HOP Promotions return with their weekender, this time with three stages each day! Friday brings Holding Absence, Confessions Of A Traitor, From Eden To Exile, High Rise, Kill The Ideal, Faces Of Eve UK, In Fear They Follow, Ursus, Jonestown, Death Valley Knights, A Titan A Dierty, Cutting Teeth, End Of Salvation and Fractions. Saturday brings Vader, Divine Chaos, Ashborn, Crimson Tusk, The Hope Burden, Siderian, Project Noise Death Remains, Sworn Amongst, Democratus, Lady Jane’s Revenge, The Final Clause of Tacitus, Take Refuge, and Akilla. Sunday brings Glamour Of The Kill, Bigfoot, Metasoma, Mage, Repulsive Vision, The Young Hearts, On Hollow Ground, Bleed Again, Soulride, InVisions, The Guts, Dishonour The Crown, Selfworth, Broken Empire, Black Tree Vultures, A New Hope, Dorylus, and Sail. Weekend tickets are £50, day ones cheaper

MADNESS + LIGHTNING SEEDS
Friday June 28th
Franklin’s Gardens, Northampton
Ska-pop legends and Britpop stalwarts combine on an early summer’s evening to entertain ShoeTown at the rugby ground. Doors 4pm, tickets from £44

BITSTREAM
Friday June 28th
The Garibaldi Hotel, Northampton
Launch party for Bitstream’s new Union EP on Vinyl Underground’s in house label – Live show in the basement , VU and Vintage FutureDJs upstairs. Doors 6pm, free entry

BISONS & THE DEATH ALLEY DRIVERS
Friday June 28th
The Lab, Northampton
Two new-for-2019 ShoeTown bands. Expect talented musicians playing rootsy-inspired music. Doors 8pm, £3 entry

NO MAN GO + ONE LEAF FALLS + NEEDLE IN THE HAY
Friday June 28th
The Pomfret Arms, Northampton
New Northampton based rock/ pop duo consisting of John and Darran [aka Slimskinny]. Support from local alternative rock quartet, plus art-rock from Leicester. Music from 9pm, free entry

DAN HUGHES
Friday June 28th
The Saxon Tavern, Earls Barton
Local singer-songwriter. Music from 8.30pm, free entry

SHARKTEETH GRINDER + GHOST OF BLU + NAILBREAKER
Saturday June 29th
The Garibaldi Hotel, Northampton
Corby hardcore leaders have an adjusted line-up that will be debuted in ShoeTown. NN digital hardcore supports. Doors 6pm, free entry

THE KEEPERS + BASEMENT STRIPPERS + ROLLING THUNDER
Saturday June 29th
The Pomfret Arms, Northampton
A trio of NN/Bedford indie rockers collectively aim to raise the Pomfret’s garden roof. From 7.30pm, free entry

TRAGIC
Saturday June 29th
Radlands Plaza, Northampton
Skate jam with some teenage punk rock to enliven things. From 6.30pm, free entry

STEELFEST
Saturday June 29th
Corby Town FC, aka Steelpark
Annual festival over six arenas. Live music includes performances from Doctor & The Medics, Shadow On The Sun, Solarise, James Watts & The Avenues, King Purple, G & The Sound Tribe, Veins, Flash Peasants, Damon Tang, Haema, Family Of Noise, Yur Mum, and First Wave. Tickets are £10

999 + FIRST WAVE
Saturday June 29th
The Kingfisher, Corby
Punk legends return to SteelTown, with Leicester gang in support. Doors 7pm, £8 tickets

NILE RODGERS & CHIC
Sunday June 30th
Franklin’s Gardens, Northampton
The funk and disco legend brings his hits to the Saints rugby ground. Ticket prices start from £31.88

JACK IN A BARREL
Tuesday July 2nd
The Old White Hart, Northampton
A seven-piece acapella group from Turvey, Bedfordshire. They sing a range of traditional and ‘sounds traditional’ songs, from standards like John Ball to more reflective numbers like John Tams´ Devonshire Carol, taking in the odd shanty and music hall number along the way. Doors 8pm, £5 entry

 

 

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Madness and Nile Rodgers shows this weekend at Franklin’s Gardens

Northampton sees a couple of big shows happening this weekend! This year is the 40th anniversary of Madness, the north London Nutty Boys with the multiple hit singles and albums….

Northampton sees a couple of big shows happening this weekend!

This year is the 40th anniversary of Madness, the north London Nutty Boys with the multiple hit singles and albums. They celebrate this feat with a number of large shows, including an open air concert at Franklin’s Gardens, this Friday June 28th.

Speaking recently about their longevity, frontman Suggs commented: “I think the reason we endure is that we genuinely do enjoy ourselves. From the very beginning you could see the joy in the early videos we made and hear it in the records. The fact that we were friends before this band started is key. I genuinely think the whole spark or art of craft and creativity was a by-product of our friendship. I think that’s what people feel. It’s a genuine experience”.

Ticket prices start from £40 and include pitch standing, seating and accessible tickets. Paid car parking is also available at the venue.

photo credit: Getty

Also this weekend sees Chic songwriting legend Nile Rodgers at the Saints rugby ground too, on Sunday June 30th. Speaking about the live shows, Rodgers enthuses about the response they get. “We really believe in having fun” he explains. “Good times and happiness. People tell us that the happiness seems to last. Like in other words, after the show is over you’re still happy the next day! You’re still thinking about ‘man we had a blast last week’. I mean for me, at my age, having done so much music and have an audience really appreciate it, it blows me away…I don’t think there’s anywhere I can go on the planet where I can’t go ‘1,2, aaaah’ and then they go ‘freak out’’. It’s the funniest thing”.

Ticket prices start from £31.88 excluding booking fee.

New Boots has a pair of tickets for the NILE RODGERS & CHIC show this Sunday to give away. To enter, email the answer to the following question to: competitions@newboots.uk
From what city did Chic originate?

The subject field of the email must be ‘Nile Rodgers Competition’
You must include your full name and daytime contact phone number.
Entries must be received by 11.59pm on Wednesday, June 26th.

Competition Terms & Conditions:
This competition closes at 11.59pm on June 26, 2019. Entries submitted after this time will not be counted.
A winner be selected at random from all correct entries received by the closing date and notified within 24 hours of the competition deadline.
Only one entry per person is permitted.
Prizes are non–transferable and there is no cash alternative.
The competition winner is responsible for all travel and transport costs to and from the venue.
If the concert is postponed and the winner is unable to attend a rescheduled date, a new winner will be drawn.
New Boots reserves the right to disqualify any entrant if there are reasonable grounds to believe any of the rules have been breached.

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