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Press Club debut album out 25 January 2019

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Album release: Press Club
Release date: 25 January 2019
Label: Hassle Records
More info: Band website

  • Watch the video for first single ‘Headwreck’ here

  • First UK tour dates set to be announced for Spring 2019

With Press Club having already risen way out of Australia’s underground punk scene, to become one of the country’s buzziest new bands, today they announce that they have signed to Hassle Records for the UK / EU release of their debut album Late Teens on Jan 25. Support from the influential Triple J radio station has come thick and fast for the band, with a number of singles gaining heavy rotation, and a coveted ‘Like A Version’ session slot generating over 150,000 views. Rolling Stone Australia and Beat Magazine have also touted the band as Ones To Watch, as the first pockets of UK media support have begun to emerge from Kerrang! magazine and the BBC Radio 1 Rock Show’s Dan P Carter.

Press Club are also sharing lead single and accompanying video for ‘Headwreck’; two and half minutes of frenetic, raw, self-assured and commanding punk, stacked with buzz-saw guitars and brimming with honesty. The track is about a place we’ve all been; in a relationship with someone that doesn’t treat you right, doesn’t respect you. It’s a call to arms to respect yourself, to demand more. The video was shot in a Collingwood warehouse, with the help of two friends, Nick Manuell and Will Maconachie, who have created a video that captures the band’s brash energy, and embodies how the song was recorded: live and in one take. It’s a glimpse at the kind of performances that have won them so many fans in support of the likes of Japandroids, Joyce Manor, Cloud Nothings, The Smith Street Band and Dream Wife on the road in their native Australia.

Press Club will also play their first ever live shows in the UK this coming Spring, with more details to be announced shortly. Bassist Iain MacRae comments; “Absolutely over the moon to be part of the Hassle posse! It's great to finally have someone we trust in our corner after being independent for so long. Let the Antipodean takeover of Europe commence!”

Late Teens is what happens when four Melbourne musicians come together to create a body of work entirely devoid of outside influence, being answerable to only themselves. Over six weeks, bassist Iain MacRae’s house was converted into a temporary song-writing sweatshop where the band wrote forty songs that were distilled into the dozen that make up the track list on Late Teens. Relying upon the experiences of their friends and people they know as subject matter, Late Teens thematically approaches displacement, relationships, internal turmoil, gentrification and inequality. Press Club is the musical embodiment of the attitude of a generation experiencing impermanence in every way.

Pre-order Late Teens on limited colour vinyl / CD / Digital here.

“A rootsy, passionate emo-punk gem… They’re another band with an incredible frontwoman, Nat Foster, whose voice imbues the songs with passion and yearning.” - Kerrang!

“One of our records of the year for sure – so great.” - Dan P Carter, BBC Radio 1

“There’s plenty of buzz surrounding Press Club, with firebrand frontwoman Natalie Foster proving she has one of the strongest set of pipes that we’ve heard in a while.” - Rolling Stone Aus

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Deer Tick new album out 1 February 2019

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Album release: ‘Mayonnaise’ by Deer Tick
Release date: 1 February 2019
Label: Partisan
More info: Band website

On Feb 1st Deer Tick will release a new compilation album entitled ‘Mayonnaise’ – a 13-song companion piece to last year's full-length albums 'Deer Tick Vol. 1' and 'Deer Tick Vol. 2.' Listen to two tracks from ‘Mayonnaise’ now - a cover of George Harrison’s ‘Run Of The Mill’ as well as brand new track ‘Hey! Yeah!’, which is accompanied by a Scorpion Dagger animated visualizer.

  • Check out ‘Hey! Yeah!’ here.

  • Listen to ‘Run Of The Mill’ here.

The band explains: “On ‘Mayonnaise,’ you’ll find alternate versions of songs from ‘Vol. 1’ & ‘Vol. 2’ that we feel have their own merit and wanted to share. We also decided to record some of the cover songs that ‘Vol. 1’ & ‘Vol. 2’ inspired us to play on our Twice Is Nice Tour. We had such a good time playing these covers live that it felt appropriate to document them here. And, lastly, if we are going into the studio, why not write a few new songs, record them, and give the fans something new to round everything out? So, here you go, this is ‘Mayonnaise.’”

'Deer Tick Vol. 1' and 'Deer Tick Vol. 2' were the band’s first new material since 2013’s ‘Negativity’ and were recorded at the legendary Ardent Studios in Memphis, TN. The albums earned raves everywhere from Vice Noisey, Consequence of Sound, Mojo, Uncut, Uproxx, as well as a performance on CBS This Morning. The band will be on tour in the UK / Ireland this November, with more dates to be announced soon.

Praise for 'Deer Tick Vol. 1' and 'Deer Tick Vol. 2’

"...with Vol. 1 and Vol. 2, McCauley solidifies his status as a modern-day barstool poet...throughout both albums, the band varies its rhythms and arrangements with surprising agility." – Pitchfork

“Vol.1 is raw, introspective and rootsy… Vol.2 is its noisy yang” – Mojo

“Vol 1 is reflective and rootsy… Vol 2 is high-class punk thrash” – Uncut

"...'Deer Tick Vol. 1' and 'Vol. 2' find the Rhode Island roots rockers back and better than ever...Deer Tick's most optimistic effort yet, a masterclass in newfound maturity not losing what made the band so likeable in the first place." – Noisey

"If the motive behind putting out two albums with contrasting volumes was intended as a demonstration of ambition and range, well, mission accomplished" - NPR Fresh Air

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Foxwarren debut album out 30 November 2019

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Album release: Foxwarren
Release date: 30 November 2019
Label: Anti-Records
More info: Band website

Growing up in scattered small towns across the Canadian prairies, Foxwarren is comprised of singer songwriter Andy Shauf (guitars/keys/vocals) and his childhood friends Dallas Bryson (guitar/vocals) and brothers Darryl Kissick (bass) and Avery Kissick (drums & percussion) who eventually found themselves in Regina, Saskatchewan. The initial sessions for their self-titled debut – coming out November 30th via ANTI- Records – began ten years ago in the Kissicks’ parents’ farmhouse while they were away on vacation. Upon their return, Foxwarren was forced to relocate and recording resumed back in Regina in a rented house where the members lived as roommates. The band's name comes from the Kissick brothers’ family home in Foxwarren, Manitoba.

Today the four-piece has released its first song 'Everything Apart'; the driving krautrock, drum machine backbone of the song evokes a ticking clock – a race against time. “Combined with Andy’s existential lyrics, the song’s propulsive feel reminded us of the noir-ish tension of classic spy thrillers like ‘The Conversation’, ‘Three Days of The Condor’, and ‘Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy’,” explained the video’s directors, the Ft. Langley Production Company. “With the band’s blessing, we set to work on creating our own micro cold-war thriller, paying homage to era tropes like zoom-heavy camerawork, trench coats, and analogue tech.”

Watch Foxwarren video ‘Everything Apart’ on YouTube

As college friends, Foxwarren initially bonded over Pedro the Lion and drew influence from The Band and Paul Simon. Now a decade into the project, Shauf reflects on their debut release: “So much time and effort went into making this album; it's something I think we're all really proud of. My touring and recording schedule got pretty wild over the past three or four years, so it put the Foxwarren album on the backburner. Making the album was such an enjoyable time - the collaboration and frustration of it all. All of us trying to make something better than we previously had. I'm excited to get it out into the world and have other people listen to it. We've been a band for 10 years or so and never properly released an album, so this is special for the four of us.”

"...recalls classic pop songwriters in the vein of Harry Nilsson or Randy Newman, coupled with the plainspoken timbre of a Paul Simon, albeit with a laconic Canadian drawl." - NPR Music

"...one of the single most promising voices to emerge from Canada in recent memory." - Flood Magazine

"...Shauf has always had a way of portraying characters and telling their stories in the most delicate and piercing ways." - The Line Of Best Fit

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JP Harris & The Tough Choices new album out now

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Album release: ‘Sometimes Dogs Bark At Nothing’ by JP Harris & The Tough Choices
Release date: Out now
Label: Free Dirt Records
More info: Artist website

  • UK Tour begins this Saturday in Scotland. Tickets here.

  • Featured: 10 New Country Acts You Need To Know In August 2018 - Rolling Stone

“...thoughtful, authentic music.” - Don Henley, The Eagles

“…has the rugged edges of outlaw, the danceability of honkytonk, and classic country’s beloved emotional candour - Harris has a timeless voice.” - Wide Open Country

After performing across Europe earlier this month, JP Harris is set to start his UK tour this Saturday November 10th with his full band, The Tough Choices, accompanying him. Including three dates in Scotland to kick things off, the critically acclaimed musician will also be stopping in Newcastle, Bristol, Oxford, Bedford, and headlining at the Omeara in London on November 16th.

With his latest album ‘Sometimes Dogs Bark at Nothing’ (released October 5th on Free Dirt Records), Harris is back after a four-year hiatus to remind folks what a lifetime dedicated to country music looks and sounds like. Sure to please fans of his hardscrabble earlier work, this new collection of songs finds the acclaimed songwriter and vocalist stretching himself both musically and personally.

In today’s musical culture, the word “authenticity” seems to have lost all meaning. What used to represent something bona fide and true is now just watered-down marketing speak, stamped onto press releases without a second thought. Born in Montgomery, Alabama in 1983, JP Harris doesn’t fancy himself a musician as much as he does a carpenter who writes country songs. However, his stranger-than-fiction story begins after the eighth grade, when he left home on a Greyhound bus in the middle of a summer night. And he’s never looked back.

For over a decade, Harris travelled the country, often alone, hitchhiking and hopping freight trains while making his living as a farm labourer, shepherd, woodsman, and carpenter, among many other titles. Still an in-demand carpenter to this day, Harris has been writing and performing country music for nearly ten years, releasing his debut album, ‘I’ll Keep Calling’, in 2012. He followed that release with ‘Home Is Where the Hurt Is’ in 2014, which only saw his star rise both among country fans and critics at major outlets like Rolling Stone. Even Eagles frontman Don Henley referenced Harris in a 2015 interview with Hey Reverb saying that Harris made “thoughtful, authentic music.”

Working with producer and Old Crow Medicine Show member, Morgan Jahnig, Harris tapped a handful of his favourite players, sent them acoustic demos, and gave some pretty unconventional instructions: “Take five days to think about these songs. Please write notes of whatever ideas come to mind. Please don’t talk to each other about it. Let’s all just get in the studio on day one and compare notes as we go.”

The resulting sessions featured a palpable spontaneity and creative energy, both of which manifest in an album that’s real, raw, and more akin to his live performance than anything Harris has put out thus far. “We took a counter-intuitive approach,” he says. “We had no pre-production. There were no rehearsals. We basically had a whole studio full of multi-instrumentalists, a six-piece band total, for the whole recording session. Everybody played at least two instruments. It was a really interesting way to do it and I think it helped us avoid anybody, including myself, overthinking the songs.”

Sometimes Dogs Bark at Nothing opens with ‘JP”s Florida Blues #1’, a hard driving country rock number that details some of Harris’ darker days touring Florida with his band, the Tough Choices. ‘Lady in the Spotlight’, an affecting song with layered strings, turns a critical eye to the stark gender imbalance and the seamy, predatory side of music industry.

Album highlight, ‘When I Quit Drinking’, is, as its title suggests, a tender look at one of Harris’ most personal struggles. ‘Gossamer’ strands of pedal steel complement the gentle quaver in his voice, underpinning some of his most personal lyrics to date.

After years of writing and playing, Harris is more in love with country music than ever before. He sums up his hopes for the album simply: “I’m just hoping that me coming to the table without gimmicks or cool-looking costumes or fancy vintage jeans—just the grubby guy I am with a sleeveless shirt and a pair of boots on—is enough to get people into the music.”

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The Steel Woods new album out 18 January 2019

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Album release: ‘Old News’ by The Steel Woods
Release date: 18 January 2019
Label: Thirty Tigers
More info: Band website

"Though there is not a shortage of Southern rock bands, few have the edge and darkness The Steel Woods bring to the table..." - Saving Country Music

‘Old News’, the new album from Nashville based southern-inspired rock band The Steel Woods is set for a January 18th release via Woods Music/Thirty Tigers. Centred around the soulful and commanding vocals of lead singer Wes Bayliss and the instrumental prowess of guitarist Jason (Rowdy) Cope, Old News makes a statement in the continuing evolution of The Steel Woods as a unit and the Bayliss/Cope combo as songwriters, something their 2017 debut ‘Straw In The Wind’ only scratched the surface of. Listen to the title track here.

Over the last two years The Steel Woods have built a loyal and passionate fan-base through their road warrior touring mentality and extraordinary live shows. Whether headlining or supporting artists such as Dwight Yoakam, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Jamey Johnson, Cody Jinks, Miranda Lambert, Blackberry Smoke and many more, The Steel Woods consistently convert audiences with each performance. Click here for a full schedule of The Steel Woods tour dates.

The themes reflected on Old News range from perseverance (‘Wherever You Are’, ‘All of These Years’), to unity (‘Blind Lover’) to hope and resilience in the stand out title track ‘Old News’. Their belief in finding common ground through shared life experiences and a musical connection was inspired by the conversations the band had with people they met on the road.

As with their acclaimed debut album, The Steel Woods again included a Black Sabbath cover (‘Changes’), but also felt the need to acknowledge some important artists we have recently lost. The four tribute tracks honour Tom Petty (‘Southern Accents’), Merle Haggard (‘Are The Good Times Really Over (I Wish A Buck Was Still Silver)’), their dear friend Wayne Mills (‘One Of These Days’) and Gregg Allman (‘Whipping Post’).

Old News was recorded at Echo Mountain Studio (Asheville, NC) and Blackbird Studio (Nashville, TN) and features band members, Wes Bayliss (guitar/vocals/keys/mandolin/harmonica), Jason Cope (guitars), Johnny Stanton (bass) and Jay Tooke (drums/percussion).

The Steel Woods are a band steeped in Southern culture with a modern approach and powerful intensity in live performance. Though their style is apologetically Southern Rock and Rock, just pull back the layers to find lyrics that feature passionate storytelling and messages that resonate.

Brand new album from The Steel Woods, ‘Old News’, available for pre-order here.

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Paul Smith new solo album out now

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Album release: Diagrams’ by Paul Smith
Release date: Out now
More info: Artist website

Today, Paul Smith releases his brand-new solo album ‘Diagrams’, a record that strips bare his work to this point and ploughs fresh songwriting pathways. Already riding a wave of positive reviews, the record will be BBC 6 Music’s Album of The Day on October 29. ‘Diagrams’ sees the Maxïmo Park frontman continues to sharpen his skills via a keenness to step out of his comfort-zone, and an ever-present desire to digest culture in all its forms. Most recently he found himself performing alongside folk star Rachel Unthank for Lauren Laverne’s Great Northern Soundtrack, and he is currently a host for publisher Penguin’s podcast alongside David Baddiel and Konnie Huq, discussing the latest book releases.

Smith gives songs from the album their first live airing at a sold-out launch show at The Waiting Room in Stockton on Oct 28th, before taking the show on the road with a full band through November. Full details can be found here.

With each Paul Smith release we expect an evolvement, and on Diagrams he remains committed towards expanding the parameters of his songwriting. From the anthemia of his debut solo outing ‘Margins’ (2010) to the exploratory minimalistic jazz of his Peter Brewis (Field Music) collaborative album ‘Frozen By Sight’ (2014) and the spirited, guitar pop record that was ‘Contradictions’ (2015), Diagrams sets its stall out as a vivid and complex album that binds the obscure and the everyday, searching for romance under stones that not many songwriters would think to turn over.

As a body of work, it seeks to unite the strengths that Smith has in his canon, drawing on his ability to both write from experience, yet also conjure new stories of unknown protagonists. Sidestepping (but not wholly ignoring) the more autobiographical work that played out through previous releases, ‘Diagrams’ instead sees Smith further explore his nous for telling these short stories. Alongside co-producer Andrew Hodson, of 6 Music favourites, Warm Digits, he charts a course into the yearning, melancholic jangle-pop of The Go-Betweens, finding himself drawn to the literate, grunge-pop of The Lemonheads, to build a cohesive collection that pulls in his many strengths.

“I try to absorb information and filter parts that interest me into the songs, while retaining my own, singular voice. I still believe in the power of a pop song to alter someone’s day, and although this record was mostly made in a bedroom, I felt the songs would have a universal appeal.” – Paul Smith

With his ability to unravel the day-to-day and transform the commonplace into an eloquent turn of phrase, the thread that holds ‘Diagrams’ in place is Smith’s honesty and empathy. It’s these matters-of-the-heart elements that push and pull at the listener’s emotions. Resultingly, it’s a collection that feels incredibly relatable.

Album opener ‘The Public Eye’ sets the tone with a dark undercurrent and was written in the aftermath of the ‘Hostile Environment’ policy adopted by the British Home Office. Taking aim at our climate of suspicion, it shines a light on how vulnerable groups are attacked without factual foundation (‘Convictions without proof’). ‘Around and Around’ similarly details the futile merry-go-round of the news cycle, before ‘Silver Rabbit’ conjures a story of self-doubt, set against the low-budget romance of the seaside, and channelled through overdriven guitars. ‘Lake Burley Griffin’ - inspired by the story of Walter Burley Griffin, an American who designed Canberra alongside his wife Marion Mahony Griffin – is the album’s discordant left-hand turn, taking in the post-rock influence of Slint or Tortoise. A love story featuring prominent clarinet, it showcases – along with the saxophone in ‘The Public Eye’ – Smith’s addition of woodwind instruments to his musical palette. Elsewhere on ‘John’ he imagines a life that can never be known, inspired by a name scrawled on the back of a toilet door, extrapolating the sentiment and following it into a world where the story unfolds from schooldays to falling in love. It’s in these instances that Smith’s talent is subtly exemplified. He envisages unknowable situations and turns them on their head to evoke truly universal emotions of hope and regret (“what if the first chance, is the last chance?”).

Through ‘The Beauty Contes’t and ‘Critical Mass’ – the former featuring folk royalty, Marry Waterson, the latter inspired by JG Ballard and Cormac McCarthy's 'The Road' - Smith again shows us he can veer into and out of songs inspired by reality. ‘The Beauty Contest’ plots a late-night train journey, and ‘Critical Mass’ plumbs bleak and apocalyptic depths, albeit alongside a black sense of humour.

‘Diagrams’ is a collection that further cements Smith’s reputation as a revered songwriter and lyricist, whose skills continue to find new avenues through which to develop. Listen to ‘Diagrams’ here.

PRAISE FOR DIAGRAMS

"Always an artist doing interesting, exciting and unexpected things." - Lauren Laverne, BBC 6 Music

"A wealth of strong songs… Shapeshifting between bright guitar pop and darker, introspective tales" - Mojo

"Around and Around and John pleasingly recall the breezy stylings of early Real Estate or Best Coast" - DIY

"His way with words is as a poet, and mastery of the English tongue shines throughout" - Dork

"Around and Around offers fine poetic storytelling" - The i Paper

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Josephine Davies' Satori new album out 9 November 2019

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Album release: 'In The Corners Of Clouds' by Josephine Davies' Satori
Release date: 9 November 2019
Label: Whirlwind Recordings
More info: Artist website

  • View the new single 'Wabi-Sabi' premiere with JAZZIZ

  • Listen/share new single 'Wabi-Sabi' on YouTube

Saxophonist and composer Josephine Davies is engaged in a continually evolving, creative musical expedition with near-chordless trio project Satori; and for this second recorded waymarker, ‘In the Corners of Clouds’ (the follow-up to the 2017 Whirlwind debut, Satori), she welcomes drummer James Maddren alongside existing double bassist Dave Whitford to explore eight original numbers, fronted by her own inquiring tenor resonances.

The spontaneity of this purely acoustic trio has already captured imaginations, as well as spurring Davies on in its progression. “We played a lot of shows after the first release and soon after I had written another album’s worth of material; and because our approach has become more and more open, I began to see my tunes mainly as a basis for improvisation. It might be seen as limiting to have no traditional "harmonic instrument" in this line-up—especially with the deeper frequencies of the tenor—but it actually throws melody to the fore, which I like. And if melody is happening you really can do whatever you want. We create so much space together that it actually encourages me to both compose and play in a different way.”

Comprised almost entirely of first takes, the less-rehearsed immediacy of Satori’s sound is fundamental to the ambiences which Davies seeks, and is encapsulated in opening number ‘Wabi Sabi’, named after a Japanese philosophy which embraces and celebrates the beauty in imperfection.

Here, Whitford’s rhythmic ostinato and the core melody are broken up, creating an oriental long groove for improvisation before being put back together into a similarly beautiful state. Davies’ long-held fascination with the music of John Coltrane can be heard in ‘Dancing Saint’, its bluesy, smouldering rhythms and long, shaped tenor lines paying homage (with animated individual features for bass and drums).

Title track ‘In the Corners of Clouds’, prompted by two Haiku based on these opposingly angular and ineffable subjects, “arrived very quickly and fully formed”, explains the saxophonist; and its almost singer/songwriter feel is characterised by an attractive, cantabile, downward sequence.

Gingerly-trodden ‘Oddities’, built from a clutch of motif snippets, leads to ‘The Space Between Thoughts’, whose finely-spun thoughts echo Buddhist meditation. The impassioned weight of Coltrane-like tune, ‘Cry’, pushes tenor out close and high, dramatized by rumbling bass and drums, only to be contrasted by the joyful South African township sway of ‘Lazy’. To close, ‘Scattered’ (a favourite of the saxophonist) travels through differing key centres, sans time signature, with complete abandon.

Reflecting on the affecting unrestraint of Satori, Josephine Davies concludes: “As a culture, we mostly don’t celebrate the crusty, technically imperfect, unglossed aspects of life, but rather seek perfection—and that doesn’t move me. I’ll always go for the intangible or the emotional; that ‘creative something’—which is what I feel all the timeless albums have got. The enduring appeal of Satori is its freedom—a wonderfully exciting and valuable experience.”

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Frankie Davies debut album out 2 November 2019

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Album release: 'Wherever I Go' by Frankie Davies
Release date: 2 November 2019
More info: Artist website

Bob Harris has had the first play of the new single by Frankie Davies called 'Open Road' taken from her debut album 'Wherever I Go'. Frankie has described the song as articulating how she feels about the love between her and her partner and their journey together:

"I wrote this song after a big road trip with my partner," says Frankie, "...sometimes it's rough and we have no idea where we are going but actually it takes us to some place beautiful. More importantly, when it seems there is no more road left to take, we just turn a corner and carry on our adventure."

Listen to 'Open Road' on Bob Harris Country BBC Radio 2.

Listen to 'Open Road' on Spotify.

Previous single 'High On Love' came with a playful new video that saw Frankie meandering home ‘the morning after’ around her local streets with the gorgeous landscape of Jersey as a backdrop. 'Wherever I Go' is released worldwide this Friday November 2nd. The album reached Number 2 in the iTunes Country Chart last week upon UK release.

Watch the video for 'High On Love' here.

Pre-order the album here.

“Wherever I Go is me, encapsulated.” says Frankie Davies, Jersey-born songwriter, on her highly anticipated debut album. This is an important release for Davies, in fact, she has said that the record “represents me, my journey and experiences over the last 4 years.”

In 2015 Davies released her debut EP ‘Dancing All Night’ out of which came 3 singles, critical praise and national airplay. In 2017 she began work on her debut album, recording with renowned Nashville musicians in the home of Country, and back in the UK with her all-female band. Davies has visited Nashville on many occasions to write and perform, once notably with BBC Radio 2’s Bob Harris as one of just 3 UK artists selected to represent BBC Introducing in Nashville at the Americana Music Festival. She continues to enjoy support from Bob and his team on his radio shows and festival stages. In 2016, Davies was invited back to Nashville to perform at an international showcase at one of the world’s biggest Country festivals, CMA Fest.

Davies performs at the highest level touring the UK and wider Europe with some of the biggest names in Country Music including Maddie & Tae, Chris Young, Charlie Worsham, Mo Pitney & Josh Kelley. Closer to home Frankie has appeared regularly at the UK’s biggest Country Music Festival ‘C2C’, toured with UK favourites The Shires, supported Ward Thomas & completed her first headline tour in 2017.

2018 marks an important step in her story, the release of ‘Wherever I Go’, Davies’ debut album on the 2nd of November, something fans have been waiting to hear for a long time. Its variety of influences are tied together by Davies’ evocative vocals and addictive melodies that transport listeners through both painful and joyful moments in her life.

“In one sense this album is a showcase of lessons learnt from my beginnings and being young and naive in the music industry. From the rockier, You Don’t Know Me, written with Emily Linden, where I let my frustration pour out, to the contrasting Front Row Seat. The latter song is about an experience that broke me. I had been led to believe that a show I had been booked for would suddenly change my life. When it came to showtime there was only one person in the audience.” This confrontation with a harsh world at such a young age only pushed Frankie forward and adds a grit to her songwriting as well as moments of heart-breaking honesty.

“I went out and I played and from my disappointment, I discovered something truly valuable. Even if there is only one person to listen to my music they deserve my best performance. I am always grateful to anyone who wants to listen.”

'Wherever I Go' was released to the US and UK on October 26th before the worldwide release on November 2nd.

Album launch shows:

  • 7th November - Ruby's Lounge, St Helier, Jersey

  • 9th November - The Acorn, Penzance, Cornwall

  • 11th November - Gullivers, Manchester

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Pedro The Lion new album out 18 January 2019

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Album release: 'Phoenix' by Pedro The Lion
Release date: 18 January 2019
Label: Big Scary Monsters / Polyvinyl Records
More info: Band website

  • First album as Pedro The Lion since 2004's 'Achilles Heel'

  • Watch the Jason Lester-directed video for the album's debut single 'Yellow Bike'

Pedro the Lion has always been David Bazan, but it took a long time to get back there.

In August 2016, during what he now recognizes as his lowest point, Bazan was touring the country alone in an aging minivan and found himself in his hometown of Phoenix, AZ. In need of a break from the road, he spent a night off at his grandparents’ house instead of driving on to San Diego. Before leaving town the next morning, after realizing that even the most familiar places can become unrecognizable, Bazan gave himself the gift of a quick detour past the house he grew up in, and on the way, experienced a breakthrough - one that would lead him both forward and back to another home he had built many years before.

From the beginning, Pedro the Lion didn’t work like the bands Bazan had played drums in, where each player came up with their own parts. Instead, like scripting scenes of dialogue for actors to play with, Bazan recorded and arranged all of the skeletal accompaniments for his obsessively introspective lyrics and spare melodies. Each player would then learn their parts and, together as a band, they brought the skeleton to life. While bandmates played on a few recordings, Bazan often played all or most of the instruments himself.

“I found so much joy working this way,” Bazan remembers. “It came naturally and yielded a feeling and a sound that couldn’t have existed by any other process. At the same time, I was also aware that not everyone wanted to play in a band where the singer wrote all the parts and might perform them on the record. Someone even suggested it might not be a valid approach to having a band in the first place. Being insecure and wanting to find camaraderie, I became conflicted about my natural process.”

By 2002, after recording Control, the high rate of turnover in the band finally caused Bazan to ditch his “natural process” in favour of a collaborative writing process. When, after a couple more years, this move did nothing to stabilize turnover, Bazan was perplexed. In November 2005, Bazan decided to stop doing Pedro the Lion altogether.

Ironically, Bazan didn’t see “going solo” as a chance to revert back to his original process of writing and playing all the parts. For the next decade Pedro the Lion felt off limits, even forgotten, like a childhood home Bazan had moved out of. He pushed forward with releasing solo albums & relentless touring in living rooms and clubs, through every part of the US and beyond, sometimes with a band, but mostly on his own. It took a toll on his family and more acutely on himself. By the summer of 2016, he still hadn’t found the personal clarity or the steady collaboration he’d been seeking and was at the end of his rope.

“I had abandoned my natural way of working in the hopes of creating space for a consistent band to write with...and it hadn’t worked. So I got a rehearsal space, mic’d up drums, bass, and guitar, and really leaned into my original process again. It immediately felt like like home. Before long I realized it also felt like Pedro the Lion.”

In June 2018, with Bazan on bass, vocals, and arrangement writing, Erik Walters on guitar and backing vocals, and Sean Lane on drums, Pedro the Lion went into Studio X and Hall of Justice with producer Andy Park to create Phoenix, the first new Pedro album in 15 years.

The songs themselves are the result of mining your past for who you are now. On opening track 'Yellow Bike', Bazan encapsulates a core ache he’s been exploring since 1998’s ‘It’s Hard to Find a Friend’ with the line:

“My kingdom - For someone to ride with”

Phoenix also deals with having to be better to yourself in order to be better to others on 'Quietest Friend', and harkens back to Control’s 'Priests and Paramedics' with a story about EMTs facing a gruesome scene, and storytelling as coping mechanism, on 'Black Canyon'. It bears witness to both what was around and what was inside, with the signature kindness and forgiveness that lightens Pedro the Lion’s darkest notes.

The result is a twisting, darkly hopeful introspection into home and what it means to go back, if you ever can. It is rock and roll wrapped in tissue paper, its hard edges made barely soft. Every melody is careful, a delicate upswing buoyed by guitar lines that hold each tender feeling together like string before ripping them apart to see what’s inside. It is an ode to the place he still loves despite how alien it can appear to him now. It is the story of a life from the beginning, but not a linear one. This life is a circle, and 'Phoenix' goes back to that first point, to show that when we are looking for home we’ll eventually run into it again, whether it’s in the desert, in a rehearsal space, or on a stage.

"He's both singular and reliable, and within a narrow but potent vein of subject matter and style, he's an explorer." - NPR

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Spielbergs debut album out 1 February 2019

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Album release: ‘This Is Not The End’ by Spielbergs
Release date: 1 February 2019
Label: By The Time It Gets Dark
More info: By The Time It Gets Dark website

  • Pre-order on CD / DL / coloured vinyl here.

  • UK headline tour for February 2019

When Oslo’s Spielbergs brought their debut single ‘We Are All Going To Die’ to the world in February this year, their impact was immediate. It was a rallying cry, an urgent and insistent examination of mortality that instantly exploded through the rafters and shot for the sky. It was a track that united rock and indie fans and writers the world over, topping the Hype Machine as most blogged about band in the world, making Lamacq’s Livener on BBC 6 Music and cementing the band as ones to keep a very close eye on going forward.

However, along with the many plaudits that the debut EP ‘Distant Star’ received, one question usually followed; how do you follow-up a statement like that?

Where some see a hill to climb, others see the weight as a gift, and if there’s one thing Spielbergs are never short on it is ideas. Fast-forward to the winter, and the band are sharing ‘4AM’, the first single from their debut album ‘This Is Not The End’. With its strength in immediacy, boldness in simplicity, and trademark Spielbergs when-are-the-wheels-going-to-fall-off intensity, it’s a track that broadcasts their talent for melody and emotionally wrought song writing clearer than ever.

Listen to ‘4AM’ on YouTube | Soundcloud | Spotify

Listening to Spielbergs is like picking up that classic record that you and your friends bonded over as teenagers. They have that rare skill of finding a way to channel their own life story – through a thick wall of guitars and feedback – into something that makes you pine for the past, but gives you the strength to stare down your future.

As far as album introductions go, ‘4AM’ is a handshake that threatens to either turn into a hug, or tear your arm off completely. For Spielbergs, it’s a line they are happy to tread again and again.

Praise for Spielbergs

“‘We Are All Going To Die’ is the perfect introduction to the trio – with clattering rhythms and razor-sharp riffs combining for a devastating listen.” - NME

“Big, heart-on-sleeve guitar-rock with a go-for-broke anthemic intensity… “We Are All Going To Die” will have you either tearing up, punching the sky, or both.” – Stereogum

“An amazing band” – Dan P Carter, Radio 1

“Fans of fuzzy, propulsive cathartic jams, are about to have a new favourite band.” – Kerrang!

“Pummelling yet melodic guitars batter you round the heart with nary a pause for breath… Full of huge, lung-busting, shouting-into-the-wind vocals and relentless drums, guitars and everything else, cheerily-titled new single ‘We Are All Going To Die’ shows little concern for restraint.” - DIY

"We Are All Going To Die" is encased in a relentless soundscape of drums and guitars, owing its all-encompassing musicianship to shoegaze that is underpinned by a distinctly emo heart.” - The Line of Best Fit

“A roller coaster ride of rollicking riffs, descending and ascending with a luminous fury and friskiness, before delivering us back home again safe and sound, but breathless.” - 405

“An alt-rock banger, ‘We Are All Going To Die’ is a lot more fun than it sounds.” - Dork

“Guitars drill down at all angles, while the pummelling percussion sounds like a cement mixer trying to chew up a steel beam.” - CLASH

“It offers the kind of swaggering, punch-drunk escapism we used to spend all our time wishing for in our teenage years, while making it feel utterly achievable even now we’re much older and far more cynical.” – Gold Flake Paint

“Harnessing the sun-kissed escapism of road-trip-rock acts like Japandroids and Cloud Nothings, their pessimistic streak is cast aside be searing riffs and an urgency most lo-fi groups could do well to glean from.” - AnotherMan

“One of the most exciting bands of 2018.” – The i Paper

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The Trials Of Cato debut album out 9 November 2018

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Album release: ‘Hide And Hair’ by The Trials Of Cato
Release date: 9 November 2018
Label: Water Records
More info: Band website

“one of the real discoveries on the folk circuit in recent times.” - Mark Radcliffe, BBC Radio 2

The Trials Of Cato are today sharing their new single ‘Gloria’, the first to be taken from forthcoming debut album ‘Hide And Hair’. Folk Radio have premiered the song, which you can listen to here.

Guitarist and vocalist Tomo Williams comments on the track; “When the band first returned from Lebanon we travelled around the folk clubs of the UK in our van and came across an inspiring individual that we couldn’t resist writing about. It’s a story of self-discovery and a celebration of being true to oneself. Lots of old folk songs talk about women dressing up as men for financial or personal gain, and we wanted to write a song about someone doing this simply because they want to! This is a song about the emotional journey of a person who comes to terms with their own identity and learns to take pride in it.”

See The Trials Of Cato live on the following dates:

  • Oct 20 - Lichfield Folk Festival

  • Oct 21 - The Canteen, Bristol

  • Nov 1 - Album Launch in Storyhouse Theatre, Chester

  • Nov 3 - FATEA 30th Anniversary, Bournemouth

  • Dec 6 - Newport Folk Club

  • Jan 11 - Ram Folk Club

  • Jan 13 - Folk at the Froize

  • Feb 14 - Falkirk Folk Club

The Trials Of Cato, a band that arrived fully formed and functioning from Beirut in the winter of 2016, have since torn a shape very much their own into the canvas of the UK folk scene. Originally from North Wales and Yorkshire, whilst living in Lebanon they spent a year boiling down the roots of their sound into a sweet hybrid of traditional influences that intrigued Lebanese audiences in the country’s biggest venues. They moved back to the UK to quickly produce their self-title debut EP at the Abbey Road Institute in London. The recording was well received – BBC Radio 2’s Mark Radcliffe hails them as “one of the real discoveries on the folk circuit in recent times.” Their musical development in the run up to their debut album proper, has been swift and sure.

This winter the trio release ‘Hide And Hair’, after a year of near-vertical ascent from a standing start. The trio may inhabit the folk genre with a grateful respect for its history but with this album they twist its old bones into something febrile and contemporary. Stunning instrumental technique hooked to an innovative presentation of traditional and original material leads to a sound where a seventeenth century widow’s lament for a lost soldier lover (My Love’s In Germany) can segue into a stomping dance tune – transporting us from the gloom of the Thirty Years War to the vibrant bounce of beckoning festival main stages.

With a clear nod to the musical revivals of the sixties and seventies, Hide And Hair is rooted in the folk traditions of Ireland and Britain but the themes remain decidedly contemporary and questioning. Recorded in the spring of 2018 at Penylan studios in mid-Wales, the array of material is hugely diverse, the album almost being treated as a journey across both time and continents. Album opener Difyrrwch is their own arrangement of three traditional melodies, two Welsh, one English (Hen Ferchetan, Difyrrwch Gwyr y Gogledd, The Parson's Farewell) and Kadisha – the title of which was taken from the name of a spectacular valley in northern Lebanon - finds the band inspired by their first steps into a part of Lebanon peppered with monasteries and ancient buildings. Hide And Hair is as much about characters as it is places, however. ‘Gloria’ is a story of self-discovery and a celebration of being true to oneself. And Gawain takes its inspiration from the medieval tale of Sir Gawain and the Green Knight. It's a folk song in spirit but perhaps one which here draws on some heavier rock, psychedelic and Eastern influences, with the electric guitar even making a rare appearance. Like ‘Gloria’, it is essentially the human story of an ordinary character trying to deal with extraordinary circumstances – in this case a beheading match with the supernatural character of the green knight.

Throughout ‘Hide And Hair’, the band’s skill, playfulness and willingness to keep exploring and developing their sound – and the genre – is clear. Whether plying their trade busking, performing in front of thousands at festivals across Europe, or frequently selling out their own club shows, The Trials of Cato have the wind behind them.

Mixed by Donald Richard in Toronto and mastered by John Davis of Metropolis Studios in London.

The Trials Of Cato are: Robin Jones - Mandolin, tenor banjo, vocals / William Addison - Irish bouzouki, vocals / Tomos Williams - Guitar, vocals

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Hauschka debut album due February 2019

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Album release: ‘A Different Forest’ by Hauschka
Release date: February 2019
More info: Artist website

Sony Classical is pleased to announce the release of the first single ‘Curious’ on October 12 – by renowned pianist and Oscar-nominated film composer Hauschka (Volker Bertelmann). The single ‘Curious’ offers the first glimpse of his upcoming album ‘A Different Forest’ in which he does away with his customary instrumental preparations to return to the pure piano. The first single heralds the central themes of the album: the experience of nature as the basis for Hauschka’s understanding of life and the composition of music. For him, the concept of nature is epitomised by the image of a forest.

Listen to ‘Curious’ on Spotify here.

“In A Different Forest, I’m focusing on the forest as a natural environment and contrast to the urban everyday life; to my surroundings. Where do I want to live and work? What surroundings do I need in order to feel fulfilled? By examining these questions I always come back to nature. How often have I gone for a walk and finished on the crest of a hill or mountain top, and found a new perspective on things. It’s quite a moving experience. The experience of the sublime. Realising that everything has been there for such a long time and will continue to exist, yet in contrast, our human existence is reduced to but a fraction of the earth’s history.” The forest is also a symbol of change for Hauschka. Here people can find themselves again and feel surrounded by, as well as a part of, a unified whole.

Wandering in the forest is also comparable for Hauschka to his way of composing. He doesn’t initially write down his music, but rather develops melodies, motives or rhythmic ideas that he tests at the piano and then records. So a piece comes into being through the process of playing. A technique he also applied in his early works, that can be attributed back to his experiences walking in nature.

“My way of composing is similar to walking freely through the forest. When wandering you simply set off into the unknown. You find yourself in surroundings where nothing can be certain and you must trust your own senses in order to find orientation. You select the starting point and certain pointers along the way, but you cannot foresee what will take place enroute. I experienced this very early on and it was essential in order to discover my senses and to realise that when I trust my intuition, a lot can be achieved. So musical ideas are for me in this sense like waypoints while playing and the playing itself is like the wandering that joins them together. In a way I organise sounds into a musical journey.”

Hauschka often lets his compositions sit for weeks after he has recorded them, only later coming back to listen to them, further develop or rework them. The track Curious displays the process of development very clearly, as Hauschka explains: “With Curious, there is a pause after the first 20 seconds. This originated from the live recording, because as I played through the opening motive, I realised that I had to start the piece anew. But I ended up retaining this “false-start” in the final mix, because I wanted to show the development process."

For Hauschka every musical work is therefore a momentary recording of his activities in the here and now. Similar to a hike it’s often first in looking back, that the way reveals its ‘meaning’. So too with Hauschka’s compositions – it’s often on looking back at the process of their creation that their sense crystallises. Furthermore A Different Forest is also a plea for us to protect and preserve our natural world.

Hauschka will take the album on tour in 2019

Ever prolific, Hauschka has worked on numerous projects throughout the last decade, most notably in the fields of theatre, dance and classical ensemble works. In recent years Hauschka has also built a prolific career writing scores for films, coming to international prominence in this field through his soundtrack for the hit film Lion in 2016. Scored in collaboration with Dustin O’Halloran, the soundtrack was nominated for numerous awards including an Academy Award, Golden Globe and BAFTA. His other recent soundtrack work includes the films Hotel Mumbai (premiered at the Toronto Film Festival 2018), Adrift (2018), In Dubious Battle (2016), Exodus (2016) & Praia do Futuro (2014); and music for the new US TV mini-series Patrick Melrose (2018) starring Benedict Cumberbatch. This Fall he will be inducted as a member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

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Deer Tick new album out 1 February 2019

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Album release: ‘Mayonnaise’ by Deer Tick
Release date: 1 February 2019
Label: Partisan
More info: Band website

On Feb 1st Deer Tick will release a new compilation album entitled ‘Mayonnaise’ – a 13-song companion piece to last year's full-length albums 'Deer Tick Vol. 1' and 'Deer Tick Vol. 2.' Listen to two tracks from ‘Mayonnaise’ now - a cover of George Harrison’s ‘Run Of The Mill’ as well as brand new track ‘Hey! Yeah!’, which is accompanied by a Scorpion Dagger animated visualizer.

  • Check out new track ‘Hey! Yeah!’ here.

  • Listen to ‘Run Of The Mill’ here.

The band explains: “On ‘Mayonnaise,’ you’ll find alternate versions of songs from ‘Vol. 1’ & ‘Vol. 2’ that we feel have their own merit and wanted to share. We also decided to record some of the cover songs that ‘Vol. 1’ & ‘Vol. 2’ inspired us to play on our Twice Is Nice Tour. We had such a good time playing these covers live that it felt appropriate to document them here. And, lastly, if we are going into the studio, why not write a few new songs, record them, and give the fans something new to round everything out? So, here you go, this is ‘Mayonnaise.’”

'Deer Tick Vol. 1' and 'Deer Tick Vol. 2' were the band’s first new material since 2013’s ‘Negativity’ and were recorded at the legendary Ardent Studios in Memphis, TN. The albums earned raves everywhere from Vice Noisey, Consequence of Sound, Mojo, Uncut, Uproxx, as well as a performance on CBS This Morning. The band will be on tour in the UK / Ireland this November. More dates to be announced soon.

Praise for 'Deer Tick Vol. 1' and 'Deer Tick Vol. 2’

"...with Vol. 1 and Vol. 2, McCauley solidifies his status as a modern-day barstool poet...throughout both albums, the band varies its rhythms and arrangements with surprising agility." – Pitchfork

“Vol.1 is raw, introspective and rootsy… Vol.2 is its noisy yang” – Mojo

“Vol 1 is reflective and rootsy… Vol 2 is high-class punk thrash” – Uncut

"...'Deer Tick Vol. 1' and 'Vol. 2' find the Rhode Island roots rockers back and better than ever...Deer Tick's most optimistic effort yet, a masterclass in newfound maturity not losing what made the band so likeable in the first place." – Noisey

"If the motive behind putting out two albums with contrasting volumes was intended as a demonstration of ambition and range, well, mission accomplished" - NPR Fresh Air

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Amgala Temple debut album out 2 November 2018

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Album release: 'Invisible Airships' by Amgala Temple
Release date: 2 November 2018
Label: Pekula Records
More info: Band Facebook

  • Feat members of Jaga Jazzist, Susanne Sundfør, Todd Terje, Morudes, Bushman’s Revenge and a-ha.

  • Amgala Temple share new single 'Amgala Avenue'

  • See the premiere via Noise Magazine

  • Hear/share the single here

Made up of three incredibly prominent Norwegian musicians: Amund Maarud, Gard Nilssen and Lars Horntveth, who have made a name for themselves as bandleaders, solo artists and musicians in an array of projects including Jaga Jazzist, Susanne Sundfør, Todd Terje, Morudes, Bushman’s Revenge, a-ha and Gard Nilssen’s Acoustic Unity, Amgala Temple is the sound of three experienced musical forces combining to create an overwhelming clash of spontaneity and control.

Amgala Temple sounds little like their previous output. These musicians’ profound interest in old and new sounds, and their deep respect for each other, was essential in creating this space where they could create more freely - venturing into new sonic landscapes - letting whatever happens happen. Built out of a love for improvisation and merging sounds from the 70s right through to the present day, the lead single ‘Amgala Avenue’ is a perfect snapshot of what to expect from the record. It’s a beguiling blend of progressive, jazz-infused, instrumental psych-rock channeling influences from King Crimson to Miles Davis to Black Sabbath.

Their debut album ‘Invisible Airships’ was recorded at Oslo Konserthus and Amper Tone Studios and was recorded in only a few days. As a document of their natural sound, the recordings remain untampered, resulting in a very honest display of their core sound. Lars Horntveth’s multi-instrumentalism - playing bass, synthesizers and more, Amund Maarud’s wild guitar abilities and Gard Nilssen’s impeccable freeform drumming makes for a breathtaking and hugely exploratory new direction.

Amgala Temple is one of the most exciting musical projects to come out of this Norway in a long time, and this is only the very start of their new journey. This album is the first of a series of records that will be offered by Amgala Temple through Pekula Records, a record label set to document bold sounding, experimental and imaginative music from in and outside of Norway.

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Touché Amoré new album out 30 November 2018

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Album release: ‘10 Years / 1000 Shows at The Regent Theater’ by Touché Amoré
Release date: 30 November 2018
Label: Epitaph
More info: Band website

On February 16th, Touché Amoré played their 1000th show at The Regent Theater in the band’s hometown of Los Angeles to celebrate their 10-year anniversary as a band. The recording of the sold out show will be released as a live album entitled ‘10 Years / 1000 Shows at The Regent Theater’ on November 30th via Epitaph.

Watch the live video of “Flowers and You” from the 1000th show Touche Amore here.

‘10 Years / 1000 Shows at The Regent Theater’ features 27 live recorded tracks that were mixed by Kurt Ballou at GodCity Studio in Salem, MA.

In late 2016 Touché Amoré released their fourth studio album, ‘Stage Four’. The album ‘Stage Four’ graced many Best of 2016 lists including A.V. Club’s 20 Best Albums of 2016 list, Stereogum’s 50 Best Albums Of 2016 list, one of the year’s best L.A. albums by L.A. Weekly, and one of the 20 best emo/punk albums of 2016 by Brooklyn Vegan. In addition, Apple Music ranked the Stage Four single ‘Palm Dreams’ among the Best Rock Tracks and Best Hard Rock Songs of 2016.

Praise for last album ‘Stage Four’

“This thing is close to flawless” – Brooklyn Vegan

“A harrowing and unrelenting record, Stage Four is a glowing testament to the post-hardcore band’s melodicism, honesty and unconditional empathy” – Pitchfork – 8.1

“A songwriting maturity now marked by complex and soaring melodies.” – NPR

“Bigger, louder and grander.” – Stereogum - Album Of The Week

“An essential release.” – Metal Hammer

**** - DIY, **** - Upset, 8/10 – Rock Sound, KKKK – Kerrang!, **** - Dork, **** - Total Guitar

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Sarathy Korwar new album out 9 November 2018

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Album release: ‘My East Is Your West’ by Sarathy Korwar
Release date: 9 November 2018
Label: Gearbox Records
More info: Artist website

Off the back of his critically acclaimed Ninja Tune debut ‘Day to Day’ and his lauded collaboration with Shabaka Hutchings and Hieroglyphic Being on A.R.E. Project in 2017, indo-jazz percussionist, producer and composer Sarathy Korwar and his newly formed UPAJ Collective are now ready to release their debut record, ‘My East Is Your West’.

Made up of estimable Indian jazz and classical musicians that share Sarathy’s passion for jazz and Indian music, UPAJ collective consists of 10 members including the likes of adroit Indian musicians such as Aravindhan Baheerathan (bansuri), Jasdeep Singh Degun (sitar), Aditya Prakash (vocals) and B C Manjunath (percussion) alongside John Ball (santoor and tabla) and respected jazz musicians including Tamar Osborn (sax and flute), Alastair MacSween (piano), Jesse Bannister (saxophonist), Giuliano Modarelli (guitar) and Domenico Angarano (bass).

Recorded live at Church Of Sound in early 2018, the new album sees Sarathy and his fellow musicians explore and challenge the concepts of ‘East’ and ‘West’ and the intersection at which western jazz meets Indian music. Led by Sarathy in a seated circle facing one another, the ensemble guides the audience through a selection of homages that explore Indian ragas and talas with smatterings of western harmony and hypnotic jazz. The result is an a truly contemplative 10 tracks traversing fervent percussion, meditative passages of ambience, raw improvisation and traditional Indian music, which is as beguiling as it is edifying.

Throughout the history of contemporary jazz many artists have had a fascination for Indian music, leading to records which are now considered to be quintessential spiritual jazz milestones. However, whilst most popular spiritual jazz from the 60s and 70s set out to explore the music, culture and religion in foreign continents, the material sometimes only incorporated certain elements of these cultures and what East meant to, or was perceived as, by those particular artists. Importantly, these musicians were also only at the start of a narrative that has become more complex as time has gone on with a greater accessibility to different music and cultures and with many more people studying Indian music and contributing to Indo-jazz.

On ‘My East Is Your West’ Sarathy balances the scales for the current and future generations, providing insight and criticising the sometimes-simplistic adoption of “Eastern styles”, whilst also building on the narrative of what ‘East’ is, and equally challenging listeners to consider where ‘East’ is. Speaking about the album Sarathy says, “For this album, the musicians play the songs of notable jazzers and Indian classical musicians who have all been interested in this cross-cultural musical exchange in the past. But this needs redefining, as the narrative has moved along considerably since these songs were initially recorded in the 1960s-70s. Although great recordings, many of which are considered classics, their nod to any non-jazz traditions of music today seem tokenistic and express a deep-rooted orientalised view of Indian music and it's music makers.

'Eastern music', much like the term "African music' are still ubiquitous and are indicative of how the UK sees, hears and consumes a lot of music that is from afar. This album (and it's title - My East Is Your West) attempts to question notions of what and where 'East' and 'West' is, in the disturbingly common and casual use of these terms whilst talking about music and bringing together both jazz and Indian classical music with a shift in the power dynamic.”

With every record Sarathy releases his music becomes more exploratory and insightful, delving into his personal influences, which also inspire much of the music in the jazz scene that surrounds him. At a time where UK jazz is being heralded for its progression, innovation and far-reaching appeal to people from varying backgrounds, ‘My East Is Your West’ is an essential record that explores cultural and musical diversity in way that will continue to be relevant for years to come.

The title ‘My East Is Your West’ is taken from artist Shilpa Gupta’s exhibition at the Venice Biennale, 2015 and is used with her permission. Featuring liner notes from jazz writer, radio presenter and editor of Straight No Chaser, Paul Bradshaw, Sarathy Korwar’s new album is available to pre-order now on 3xLP, CD and digital platforms from Gearbox Records.

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Hajk new album out 1 February 2019

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Album release: 'Drama' by Hajk
Release date: 1 February 2019
Label: Jansen Records
More info: Band website

'Drama' – of the interpersonal kind – that’s what Hajk have turned their focus to in 2018. The band burst onto the scene with their self-titled debut album last year, garnering support around the world as well as making a name for themselves in their home country of Norway. Now, the highly anticipated follow-up 'Drama' has been announced for February 2019 – a record that both pulls at the heartstrings and urges you to dance away your sorrows. Lead single and first taste of what is to come arrives in the form of the bubblegum-flavoured new cut, 'Dancing Like This'. It's a lyrically melancholy and wide-eyed love song, with an addictive melody that looks to sugarcoat your tears.

Hajk’s 2017 debut received praise from the likes of Astrid S, Sigrid and Kimbra, as well as actress and model, Chloë Grace Moretz. International acclaim came in waves from Noisey, Stereogum, The Line of Best Fit, Drowned In Sound, V Magazine, The Independent, Indie Shuffle, and more, noting their idiosyncratic, yet supremely catchy pop tunes, while likening them to everything from Fleetwood Mac and Aztec Camera to Dirty Projectors and Little Dragon.

With their second album, 'Drama', a more self-assured band reveals themselves. Sharpened by more studio experience, they have once again produced the record themselves, taking extreme care over every second and minute detail of their work. Blending analogue and digital sounds, switching between programmed arrangements and live takes from the studio, drawing on three lead vocalists and an assortment of guest musicians, Hajk conjured up whatever was necessary to fulfill their creative vision.

The title 'Drama' relates to the drama of humanity and a somewhat naïve yearning for love in a world in which love can sometimes seem in scarce supply.

'Drama' is due for release on February 1st via Jansen Records. First single from it 'Dancing Like This', is out on September 28th, listen here.

PREVIOUS PRAISE FOR HAJK

"This new Oslo-based band will make you feel so very fine" - Noisey

"The soaring vocals of Feist with the erratic percussion of Dirty Projectors" - V Magazine

Ones To Watch at The Guardian

"Hajk has delivered one of the best debuts of the year" - The Line Of Best Fit

"Crisp, clear, and smooth... street-ready guitar-pop" - Stereogum

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Anne Marie Almedal new album out 26 October 2018

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Album release: 'Lightshadow' by Anne Marie Almedal
Release date: 26 October 2018
More info: Artist website

Norwegian singer-songwriter Anne Marie Almedal has shared a new single from her forthcoming album 'Lightshadow', which is due out 26th October 2018. The single 'You Keep Me At Arm's Length' was premiered by For Folk's Sake, who said "The new record brings a fresh new sound for this beguiling musician, as she blends folk, electronics and some indie-pop beats in an addictive mix." You can see the premiere HERE. The single is also accompanied by a stunning new video by Pål M. Laukli.

Watch the video for 'You Keep Me At Arm’s Length' here.

Somewhat destined to be the first track of Anne Marie Almedal’s new album 'You Keep Me At Arm’s Length' arrives with just Anne Marie’s commanding vocals and Nicholas Sillitoe’s wistful folk guitar accompaniment, a brooding piano and synth bass slowly adding momentum. Melancholy as ever, bittersweet, focused and full of longing, the new single is a bold blend of folk, electronics, indie-dream-pop and nonchalant vocals. It’s a song about unrequited nearness, love forlorn, hopes and dreams flailing in the distant horizon. Something familiar, something new.

'You Keep Me At Arm’s Length' was recorded in Anne Marie’s hometown Kristiansand in a summer break with producer/co-writer Nicholas taking time off his busy soundtrack schedule together with new-found producer/multi-instrumentalist Alf Vaksdal. Drums were added by the young and talented Marius Trøan Hansen, and Nicholas returned home to London to polish the mix with producer Tim Bran (London Grammar/Halsey/Birdy). The result, a one-listen-and-you’re-hooked defining new direction and perfect introduction to the new album.

Previous praise for Anne Marie Almedal

"Sweetness multiplied, sadness tripled, her music brings you a closer step to heaven...as fantastic as sharing the last cigarette with the one you love." - Esquire

"...a hint of Norwegian ice sends chills through all the rustles in the hedgerow." - Financial Times

"Breathtaking" - Daily Express

"Superbly chilled, the low-key approach seems to apply further intensity to the Norwegian singer's delivery, really focusing in on each word. A very lovely, pretty, sensual piece of music, it takes preconceptions around Anne Marie Almedal's music and shunts them into a different plane." - CLASH

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Butcher Brown new album out 2 October 2018

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Album release: ‘Camden Session’ by Butcher Brown
Release date: 12 October 2018
Label: Gearbox Records
More info: Band website

Today, Virginia jazz/funk/hip-hop collective Butcher Brown have shared a new video from their recent Tiny Room session for ‘Camden Square’. The single is taken from the bands new album ‘Camden Session’, which was recorded direct-to-disc at Mark Ronson’s London studio and is due for release on 12th October via Gearbox Records. You watch the video here.

Alongside the new album the band have also been announced as a direct support for Kamasi Washington’s ‘Heaven and Earth’ US tour, which will take place over November 2018.

Butcher Brown’s releases to date range from the polished soul/funk of “All Purpose Music” (Ropeadope) (2014) to the 20-track underground groove-laden beats cassette “GrownFolk” in 2015. Both were released to critical acclaim and explains their almost cult status in the music world. The band have come in leaps and bounds in recent times: last year’s “Live at Vagabond” (Gearbox) record showcases the raw energy of their live shows, whilst the band’s most recent Bandcamp release, Afrobeat-themed “Afrokuti: A Tribute to Fela”, provides further testament to the band’s tight synchronicity as well as the truly unbelievable musical capabilities of each band member.

Whilst each individual member maintains their own illustrious side-projects (working with artists such as Christian Scott, Nigel Hall, Mumu Fresh, Black Thought, Phonte, Rapsody, 9th Wonder), Butcher Brown is a hard-working band in an era where most groups are fleeting assemblages, together only long enough to record. The band cultivate a dedicated audience through combining a conventional, label-oriented approach with releasing “underground” tapes, disciplined rehearsal and engaging, adventurous performance. Recent high-profile performances include touring with Galactic last year & performing alongside bands such as Lettuce, Eric Krasno, Soullive, John Schofield, Tauk, & Motet and more - Full bio below.

As a band dedicated to innovation and informed by a love of the past, Butcher Brown’s modernistic fusion is aptly described as “hip hop Mahavishnu.” Impressive as they are individually, together they are something increasingly rare: a real band, playing for their audience and for each other, on the verge of a brilliant future.

‘Camden Session’ is available to pre-order via Gearbox Records here.

Butcher Brown is an up-to-the minute throwback to the great progressive jazz bands of the 60s and 70s. Whilst all members were born after the mid-70s golden age of fusion, their modern, hip-hop-inflected funk has rich echoes of Weather Report, Return to Forever, early Earth Wind and Fire and, perhaps, a pungent whiff of Zappa. Like those bands, Butcher Brown’s unified sound comes from the intertwined talents of the five members, each bringing something unique to the mix.

Multi-instrumentalist Devonne Harris is arguably the visionary of this egalitarian band. His responsive keyboard work shapes the harmonic colors through which the music pulses and flows. Under the name DJ Harrison, he’s created a vast catalog of hip hop beat tapes. He recently released a solo album entitled “Hazy Moods” on Stones Throw Records, the Los Angeles label responsible for releases by Madlib, J Dilla, and many more. Jellowstone Records, his home studio, is a pivotal focus of the vital Richmond music scene, with a growing reputation drawing big name visitors including Nicholas Payton (who recorded his 2014 record “Numbers” there with Butcher Brown). Recently projects include playing keys and synths on Jack White’s latest album “Boarding House Reach,” having selections featured on Phonte’s solo album “No News is Good News,” and taking part in DJ Jazzy Jeff’s 2nd and 3rd annual Playlist Retreat

Bassist Andrew Randazzo is arguably the band’s navigator. “He’s the cool one, the calm one. He’s the mortar, binding together the rhythmic and harmonic side of the music. Both onstage and off, he holds everything together and makes everything go smoothly. And he is an amazing player.” In the band’s funk-inflected music, the foundation is foreground; the bass as much a lead as a rhythm instrument.

Drummer Corey Fonville is pure explosive energy. “He’s always ready for battle,” Harris says. “A huge, controlling factor in our sound.” A percussion prodigy turned international jazz sideman, Fonville’s national performance career when he was just 14, with a 2005 appearance on Late Night with David Letterman. In the years since, Fonville’s taken his propulsive energy around the world, playing with Christian Scott at New York’s The Blue Note and performing alongside Chris “Daddy” Dave in China. He’s the beating heart of Butcher Brown, pumping out fresh, danceable rhythmic complexities aimed at both the brain and the hips.

Guitarist Morgan Burrs is the youngest of the group. Coming from a family of musicians, and being surrounded by all types of music since birth, you could say he was destined to lead a life as a musician. In high school, he was awarded 2 full tuition scholarships to study at Berklee College of Music’s 5 Week Summer program 2 years in a row, & having attended VCU, he’s become a force on the Richmond Music scene. He’s recently performed at Budweiser’s Made In America Festival with hip-hop producer legend 9th Wonder and rapper Rapsody.

Marcus Tenney is a multi-instrumentalist from Richmond, Virginia. Working freelance since 2005, Marcus has been playing trumpet and saxophone with bands such as Foxygen, No BS! Brass and Butcher Brown. He has also done studio/session work for Spacebomb Records and records and performs original music with a host of his own ensembles. Marcus has worked with artists such as Braxton Cook, Count Bass D, Matthew E. White, Natalie Prass, Billy Williams and many others.

“As with Kamasi Washington, BADBADNOTGOOD or labelmates Binker & Moses, progressive rappers should be queuing out the door for their blessing.” - Mojo

“It’s fusion, Jim - but not as we know it!” - Record Collector

“Fusing funky backdrops against interweaving textures and daring harmonic dissonance, the Virginia group fuse the dancefloor with the art gallery.” - CLASH

“...although some of the studio albums are more funky and hip hop centred, this [‘Live at Vagabond’] may be a solid introduction to this possible future supergroup.” - UK Vibe

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The Rocket new album out 30 November 2018

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Album release: ‘Another Reason Not To Fear The Sky’ by The Rocket
Release date: 30 November 2018
More info: Band Facebook

Belgian pop-punk outfit The Rocket have shared the first single from their forthcoming album ‘Another Reason Not To Fear The Sky’, which is due out 30th November. The single ‘Focus’ was premiered by New Noise Magazine, who described the band as having “a super keen ear for infectious melodies”, calling the track “punchy and impactful." See the premiere here. Share the video via YouTube here.

Speaking about the single, the band said “It’s a very personal song, about dealing with loss. Or rather: about not dealing with it for way too long. The track has an up-tempo kind of energy to it; we really let our inner Four Year Strong demons out in the intro, ha. In our minds, the song serves as a mission statement for the rest of the album: time to get back from hibernation and literally regain focus.”

Having taken a break from writing together, the Rocket's new album ‘Another Reason Not To Fear The Sky’ sees the band return in full effect. Produced by Marc McClusky (Weezer, Motion City Soundtrack, Bad Religion) and mastered by Chris Athens (Beastie Boys, AC/DC, N.E.R.D), the record is proof of the reinvigorated energy that has seen the quintet earn an illustrious live reputation playing stages at the likes of Groezrock and alongside many other major European festivals.

The album also features guest appearances from Justin Pierre (lead vocals/guitar) & Joshua Cain (lead guitar) of Motion City Soundtrack, merging the band's first-era pop-punk influences (think-Millencollin, NFG, Blink 182) with some of their more synth driven melodic sensibilities.

With years of gigging experience their shows are full of anthemic choruses, hook-driven emotive vocals, melodious synth lines and rapturous drumming, The Rocket are ready to blow all expectations away with a record that pushes genre forward with new layers of intricacy and depth, whilst packing in the vigour and irrepressible choruses fans of the genre have come to know and love.

'Another Reason Not To Fear The Sky' is due out on 30th November and will be see the band continue to a number of shows across Europe throughout the rest of 2018.

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