PLAYLIST – Geronimo by Sheppard

Geronimo by SheppardSheppard is a Brisbane-based indie-pop band. Originally formed in 2009 as a duo consisting of siblings Amy and George Sheppard, they expanded by adding Jay Bovino in April 2011 before reaching their current six-member state, including the third Sheppard sibling Emma.  They have released two singles to date and one extended play under their own label entitled Empire of Song. Their second single “Geronimo” spent three weeks at number one, knocking Pharrell Williams’ single “Happy” from the top spot after its 12-week run.  “Geronimo” was accredited platinum by ARIA in April 2014.  “Geronimo” is the first #1 single to be recorded in Brisbane.

In March 2014, Sheppard became the first Australian band to sign a contract with Decca Records; within Australia, however, the band’s material will continue to be released under Empire of Song/Chugg Music. 

Sheppard performed at the 2013 ARIA Awards ceremony, and were nominated for an ARIA Award at that ceremony in the category of Best Independent Release. They also played at the Sonic Bang festival in Bangkok on 24 August 2013, sharing the line-up with Placebo, Pitbull, Far East Movement, Jason Mraz, and Owl City. 

Sheppard also performed at Sullivan Hall in New York City on 18 October 2013 for the 2013 CMJ Music Marathon showcases. Sheppard opened for Michael Franti & Spearhead in Sydney’s Metro Theatre (15 April 2014) and Melbourne’s Prince of Wales Ballroom (16 April 2014).  The band were also the main support act for Australian dates on Keith Urban’s Light the Fuse Tour in June.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

GIG – The History of Apple Pie at The Joiners – Sunday 12th October 2014

history of apple pieThe background: With Mona’s debut album getting so-so reviews, the Vaccines record underperforming, and Brother hardly becoming the stadium giants of their frankly unrealistic ambitions, it’s not been a vintage year so far for bands. Meanwhile, outfits from opposite ends of the sonic spectrum such as Wu Lyf and Odd Future are doing things differently, operating, notionally at least, more as collectives with music as just one aspect of their outputs. And the sheer plethora of singer-songwriters and solo performers, whether folk, country, grime-tinged or neo-soul, suggests the writing’s on the wall for the traditional four-square indie rock band.

But there’s Yuck getting rave notices, and now here come the History of Apple Pie, helping to keep the guitar/bass/drums unit alive. In fact, they’re mates of Yuck, or anyway Yuck have been saying nice things about them, and like their London counterparts they appear to have a similar reverence for late-80s US and UK rock. We’ve had the C86 revival, courtesy of Vivian Girls and, oh, too many to mention. Now it makes sense to move on to the 1987-8 revival as we approach the 25th anniversary of that period. We’ve read that they’re also influenced by 13-era Blur and Pavement, but that amounts to the same thing, because they, too, were born out of the dream melange of melody and noise as pioneered by Sonic Youth, Dinosaur Jr and My Bloody Valentine.

This isn’t quite clear from their debut single You’re So Cool, which incidentally was written about a schoolfriend (of theirs, not ours) who knew every word to the film True Romance. This one, in terms of clarity of production and vocals, nods more to 60s girl groups as per the C86 bands. It’s on B-side Some Kind that their 88-worship becomes apparent as a burst of guitar-noise like a revving motorbike leads into a tune that uses Dinosaur Jr’s Freak Scene – the Smells Like Teen Spirit of the pre-grunge generation – as its model, with an MBV-ish approach to dazed-and-confused, when-you-wake-you’re-still-in-a-dream sleep-singing from the two girls in the band, who play the Bilinda Butcher/Deb Googe roles to near perfection. On Tug, over a chugging rhythm and an overlay of solo guitar drizzle, “singing” becomes a series of gaseous, sibilant sighs. Woozy does it. We’re not sure about their name – it’s a bit twee – but the History of Apple Pie are giving bands a good name.

From The Guardian


GIG – Childhood at The Joiners – Tuesday 7th October 2014

childhoodA little over two years ago Childhood frontman Ben Romans-Hopcraft had a revelation. “I’d gone to uni purely to meet people, and I’d just started hanging out with Leo,” he says, referencing his songwriting partner and Childhood’s devil-eyed guitarist Leo Dobsen. “And even though we’d had this vague idea about forming a band together, we didn’t have any songs or anything. We’d never played a single note, in fact, but for some reason we just started going around telling everyone that we were this amazing new band, like, ‘Yeah, were Childhood, have you heard us? Oh, you haven’t?! You really should, we’re pretty sweet…’.”

Somewhat bizarrely, this back-to-frontapproach paid off, kicking Ben and Leo into action so that by the time their first demos – recorded in Ben’s room between listening to everything from old Marvin Gaye records to new Bradford Cox ones – found their way online, there was already a baying audience waiting for them. Record industry scouts and tastemakers soon followed, even though the twosome weren’t anything approaching a proper band yet.

“We literally had no idea what we were doing!” Ben laughs now. “We were still experimenting with everything – how to write together, how to play live, what gigs to do, who ran them, what line-up. It wasn’t until we left that we released ‘Blue Velvet’, and then we got it together with Dan (Salamons, bass) and Jonny (Williams, drums) and became what you know today as Childhood.”

Still one of the band’s best loved songs, ‘Blue Velvet’ tells you everything you need to know about the mini-masterpieces Ben, Leo, Dan and Jonny craft. Lush, sonically-infused, scarily melodic, boisterous and brimming with a dreamy wanderlust that sets them apart from the rest of London’s new band scene, it’s one of the many gems they’ve come up with ondebut album ‘Lacuna’, made earlier this year with London’s producer-of-the-moment Dan Carey.

A re-recorded and beefed-up version of ‘Blue Velvet’ opens the album in fine style – unequivocallyrealising its full potential. “It had to be good, really!” says Ben, adding,“I think the main thing we were going for, and this counts on all the tracks, was to get this juxtaposition between having loud guitars and soft melodies. We’re all about the contrast and personality.”

It’s this idea of split dynamics that drives Childhood, he continues. “I love people like the Cocteau  Twins ” and Felt, but then you’ve got Leo who’s totally on newer stuff. He was onto Mac DeMarco before anyone else in the world, and Real Estate and Deerhunter. It’s quite a potent mix, and we always try to define Childhood as that. It’s always eclectic, it’s aware of soul, and dub, and indie, and dance, and it’s all about mixing up English and American music and seeing what you get.”

Mind you, ask Ben where the beating heart of Childhood lies, and the singer will tell you south London. Brixton, where he grew up and still lives now, is a key influence – most obviously on the likes of the slow, dubby ‘Right Beneath Me’, but also more ambiguously on the album’slyrics. “It’s nostalgia,” he explains. “The gentrification of Brixton pisses me off massively, and a lot of the songs are about having that foreign feeling of when you’re somewhere so familiar that’s changing. ‘Blue Velvet’ is about that, ‘Falls Away’too in a way. Similarly, I can’t help but write songs after the name – Childhood. Maybe I’m inherently nostalgic? I almost think I don’t wanna be like that, but the truth is I can’t avoid it. I think writing about it is my way of taking the shackles off…”

Perhaps the most commendable thing about ‘Lacuna’is how as an album it twists and turns, showing off manydifferentsides to a band who, lest we forget, are still in their infancy. One minute they’re evoking Motown if re-imagined for the post-noughties generation (‘You Could Be Different’) before taking in krautrock (‘Pay For Cool’), baggy (‘Solemn Skies’) and even veering deep into Todd Rundgren territory (‘When You Rise’).

It all makes for a thrilling listen, but Ben’s unphased when it comes to trying to pin down what it is that makes the songs work so well together. “A lot of bands have a certain sound they’re defined by,” he says. “But in Childhood we do it all on a vibe. When I feel like I’m listening to us then I know we’re onto something good.”

Make no mistake, on ‘Lacuna’ Childhood have come up with something very good indeed. And as they’ve been telling all and sundry since even before theygot going – you really should check them out, they’re pretty sweet…

GIG – Dry The River at The Wedgewood Rooms – Tuesday 2nd October 2014

DRY THE RIVERDry the River are an English folk-rock band, formed in the Stratford district of East London in 2009.

They played their first headline show at the Luminaire in Kilburn, London, in April 2010. Since this time, the band have toured extensively in the United Kingdom, as well as worldwide, including Europe and North America.

After two extended plays and significant early radio support from BBC Introducing, the band signed to Transgressive Records in 2010.

They released their debut single, “No Rest”, in March 2011.

The band’s subsequent run of UK festivals in 2011 included the Glastonbury Festival, The Great Escape Festival, the iTunes Festival, the Latitude Festival, Summer Sundae, the Green Man Festival, Bestival, and the Reading and Leeds Festivals.

In March 2011 the band created a charity t-shirt for the Yellow Bird Project to raise money for Asylum Aid; an organization that provides specialist legal representation and advice to people seeking asylum in the UK. They also filmed a four part video series called the “YBP Wilderness Sessions”, to promote the release of the shirt.

They were on the long list on the BBC’s Sound of 2012 poll. Paul Lester compared them in The Guardian to fellow Londoners Mumford & Sons, commenting that the group “offer a glimpse of the pastoral with their infectious semi-acoustic ditties”.

The band recorded their debut album, Shallow Bed in the United States in Bridgeport, Connecticut, with producer Peter Katis. Katis had previously worked with Interpol, Jónsi and The National. The album was released in the UK on 5 March 2012, and in the US on 17 April 2012.

During 2012, they played festival shows throughout Europe, including the Roskilde Festival, the Underage Festival, 2000 Trees, Pohoda Festival and Open’er Festival, as well as North American festivals, including the Sasquatch Festival, Lollapalooza 2012 and the Austin City Limits Festival.

In November 2012, Dry The River released a limited edition beer, brewed with Signature Brew, called Mammoth.

An acoustic version of Shallow Bed was released by download only on 17 December 2012.

The band recorded their second album in Iceland in early 2013, to be released later in the year.

In February 2014, Dry the River announced on their Facebook page that violinist William Harvey had departed the band in order to pursue other projects.

On June 16th of 2014, Dry the River announced via Facebook that their second album, titled Alarms in the Heart, will be released August 25th and that it will be supported by a UK Autumn tour.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


GIG – Jake Isaac at The Joiners – Monday 29th September 2014

jake issacSouth London singer songwriter, Jake Isaac, has announced his first UK headline tour following an eventful summer of touring which included festival performances at Barn On The Farm, Summer Sound, Leopallooza, Kendal Calling and a slot on the coveted Other Stage at Glastonbury. After supporting Ella Eyre on her UK tour earlier in the year, Jake returned to support Ella at her Brixton Electric show on June 12th.

Jake released his latest EP ‘War Child’ on June 28thwhile at Glastonbury, which went straight into Top 10 on the iTunes Singer-Songwriter chart. The ‘War Child’ EP reveals a wealth of fresh talent to be found in Isaac, from the beautiful, soaring ‘Hope’ to the energetic melodies of ‘Long Road’.  Jake is joined by Virgin/EMI’s Josh Recordon ‘Never Leave’ and by JP Cooper on ‘Carry You Home’.

From The Joiners website

GIG – The Novatones at The Joiners – Saturday 20th September 2014

novatonesThe Novatones are Southamptons anthem kings. The Britpop/punk 4 piece are gaining praise from bbc introducing.

Fresh from their perfomance at The Isle of Wight festival they release there highly anticipated Sunday Romance ep and embark on there first uk tour.

A band fueled on a love/hate relationship for all things British. proud to be part of England and the legendary music scene that comes with it, but fed up of the spoon fed bullshit synonymous with the x factor generation and all the pop puppets. Hard grafting, hard hitting well dressed punk with a sound that smacks you in the face and leaves you thirsting for more.

From band website

PLAYLIST – On My Way Back Home by Band of Horses

band of horsesBand of Horses, originally known briefly as Horses, is an American rock band formed in 2004 in Seattle by Ben Bridwell.

The band has released four studio albums, the most successful of which is 2010’s Grammy-nominated Infinite Arms.

The band’s lineup, which included Mat Brooke for the debut album, has undergone several changes; although, the current members, Bridwell, Ryan Monroe, Tyler Ramsey, Bill Reynolds, and Creighton Barrett, have all been with the band for several years.

Band of Horses’ fourth studio album, Mirage Rock, was released in September 2012.