PLAYLIST – Worlds Apart by Seven Lions ft. Kerli

world apart - seven lionsJeff Montalvo known professionally as Seven Lions, is an American record producer, remixer, instrumentalist and DJ from Santa Barbara, California.The name Seven Lions comes from a fantasy book called Latro In The Mist by Gene Wolfe. Seven Lions is a character in the book.

Montalvo’s interest in music production began at the age of 7 when his father came home with a Macintosh and keyboard. He grew up as a metal and punk-inclined drummer, but he eventually segued into electronic music production.

Montalvo explains, “For me, it was the most accessible thing, to start picking up something like drums as opposed to something like electronic music. My transition out of playing with a band was because I got tired of waiting for my band all the time – I wanted to just start making music so I started composing electronic music by myself.” He took the initiative, and after a friend gave him the program Fruity Loops, he was set to become a producer

After releasing his debut Polarize EP in April, Seven Lions had several Beatport #1s (four in the dubstep chart) with remixes for the likes of Above & Beyond, Matrix & Futurebound, Paul Van Dyk and Delirium. His song, “Below Us” feat. Shaz Sparks, was also featured as Zane Lowe’s ‘Hottest Record In The World.’

The Worlds Apart EP was released April 29, 2014 on Casablanca Records. The EP contains five tracks: “Don’t Leave” with Ellie Goulding, “Worlds Apart” with Kerli, “Nepenthe”, “Strangers” with Myon and Shane 54 & Tove Lo, and “Keep it Close” with Kerli.

Seven Lions has stated that “It’s more experimental than the last EP and the focus is on songwriting instead of pure dance-floor aggression.” The EP showcases a wide variety of genres including elements of trance, dubstep, bass music, and electro while also including more vocals.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

GIG – Nothing But Thieves at The Joiners – Thursday 24th July 2014

nothing but thievesIn an era where tracks are produced by committee and honed by focus groups, Nothing But Thieves are a rare beast indeed – a band with the talent, integrity and vision to create heartbreakingly beautiful music entirely on their own terms.
Their origins lie in schoolmates Conor (vocals), Joe (guitar) and Dave’s (drums) efforts in a variety of bands in their hometown of Southend, Essex.

Inspired by artists as diverse as Ray Charles and Led Zeppelin, Foo Fighters and Arcade Fire, they gained valuable experience on the local live circuit, even if they weren’t going to change the world. 

Then Dom joined their school in the sixth form and everything went up a notch. A classically trained guitarist from the age of six, Dom brought a musicality and learning to the table which made everyone sit up and take notice. 

Not that this puts him on a pedestal with his bandmates. They all agree that it’s the mix of his formal training with Joe’s self-taught chops which lies at the heart of the their sound. 

As Dom puts it, “Joe knows shit-all about theory and that’s the best thing about him… if it sounds good, it sounds good”. Knowing the ‘right’ way to play is all very well but, Dom continues, “You want a million different options for the next chord”.
It’s a sentiment you feel sure would have been shared by the band’s foremost influence, Jeff Buckley, whose rip-up-the-rulebook approach Conor describes simply as “effortless genius”.

Buckley’s legacy has loomed large over the last 20 years of alternative music and there’s no point denying his influence on NOTHING BUT THIEVES. It’s there in Dom and Joe’s intricate guitar lines and unusual chord progressions, and most obviously in Conor’s soaring, angelic vocals.

Yet although the band readily acknowledge their debt to the late singer-songwriter, they have spent the three years since their formation developing their craft to the point where their sound and style is very much their own.
Like all the best things, however, it took time and effort to perfect.
Crucial to this process was a six-week trip to the States in 2012. Feeling they were stagnating in familiar surroundings, the band embarked on a journey which took in LA, New York and Nashville to work with songwriters and producers of the highest calibre.

Joe refers to this simply as “the best decision we’ve ever made as a band”. They returned energised, inspired and, most important of all, accomplished songwriters in their own right.  From this point on, the songs came tumbling out; each seemingly better than the last. The rate of progress was such that they’d find themselves embarrassed by tunes they’d written just two weeks previously. 

Once the proverbial tap had been turned on, it seemed there was no stopping the flow of creativity.
It’s a flow which continues unabated even now. Days before they were due to record their self-financed debut EP, a new song, Emergency, came together in the studio which everyone felt was too good not to include. No less an authority than Radio 1’s Zane Lowe agreed, insisting it be played on his show on the strength of one listen.
That these boys are writing material of such maturity and sophistication while barely out of their teens is astonishing. That they’re doing it all outside the traditional music business framework is even more impressive still.
If they continue to grow at the current rate, and there’s nothing to suggest otherwise, the album should be very special indeed.

GIG – Rainbow Girls at The Railway Inn – Tuesday 22nd July 2014

rainbow girlsAdding colors to the duo Red & Yellow (Caitlin Gowdey & Erin Chapin), Rainbow Girls loosely formed in 2010 with the addition of Cheyenne Methmann (Green) and Vanessa May (Violet), playing at a weekly underground open-mic in Isla Vista, California, at the unofficial housing coop known as Rainbow House. In December 2010, they set off for a week long self-recording camping trip to Joshua Tree and Big Bear Mountain, where they made their very own 5 song demo.

At the end of January, after only a few shows, Rainbow Girls was put on hold while one of the gals skipped town to study abroad in Rome. Impatient, the three remaining members followed suit in June, and the group of four spent the summer of 2011 busking and couch surfing their way around Europe, playing gigs and spreading music throughout Switzerland, Germany, England, Italy, the Netherlands, and France. Fifteen cities, six countries, four self-recorded audio tapes, two French recording studios, and 1 deportation later, they found themselves back in Santa Barbara with a drummer -Savannah Hughes (Blue)- and the beginnings of a whole new sound.

Since then they have toured the western half of the US extensively, playing festivals and opening for bands like ALO, Nicki Bluhm & the Gramblers, Brothers Comatose, and the California Honeydrops. In May 2013, they released their first official studio album, “The Sound of Light,” featuring 16 original tracks and funded by almost 200 friends, fans, and family members. That summer the gals returned to Europe and the UK, but this time with a van, a tour manager, an album, and a legitimate list of gigs and festivals lined up.

After returning to the US in September, the girls decided to take the winter to make money, work on new material, and gear up to tour both the US and Europe again in the Spring and Summer of 2014.

From Band website

GIG – The Merrylees at Lennons Nightclub – Friday 20th June 2014

merryleesWith a potent mixture of psychedelic and wild west influences, The Merrylees wouldn’t sound out of place on a cool Quentin Tarantino soundtrack.

The band’s debut single – ‘For You’ – which features The Coral’s Bill Ryder Jones on guitar and production duties, swings along like the clappers; a folk explosion full of pleasing harmonies and galloping guitars.

Clever songwriting comes easily to these Scots, too, it would appear. There are moments of close to pop perfection in the early demos which you can hear online. Should be a big year for these boys…

GIG – The Hoosiers at The Joiners – Sunday 15th June 2014

hoosiersThe Hoosiers are an English pop/rock band from Reading. They consist of members: Irwin Sparkes (lead vocals, lead guitar), Martin Skarendahl (bass guitar, rhythm guitar), Sam Swallow (keyboard, backing vocals) and Alan Sharland (drums, percussion).

Their first single “Worried About Ray” reached #5 on the UK Singles Chart in July 2007. In October 2007, they released their debut album The Trick to Life, which reached number 1 in the album charts.

The band released their second top ten album The Illusion of Safety on 16 August 2010 and was preceded by the lead single “Choices” which was released on 1 August 2010, it reached the UK Top 20.

In October 2013, they unveiled a preview of their forthcoming new single Somewhere In The Distance exclusively on entertainment news website Digital Spy. It began receiving airplay on the radio shortly afterwards including on 106.9FM WHCR.

The song serves as the lead single to their third studio album ‘ ‘The News from Nowhere, which follows on 14 April 2014. Fans who pre-order the LP from their official website now will be sent the record a week ahead of its official release as a thank you for paying in advance and now have created the news from nowhere out now. “What this does is allows us to create an album that we totally control, and will sound like what we want it to sound like, and we can release it on our own record label and control our musical destinies,” the band said in a statement.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

PLAYLIST – Thanks for Leaving by Alexandra Stan

Painted in WaterlogueAlexandra Ioana Stan
 (born 10 June 1989), better known as Alexandra Stan, is a Romanian singer and model. She released her debut single, “Lollipop” in late 2009, peaking at number-eighteen in her native country.

Her second release dance hit, “Mr. Saxobeat”, became her worldwide breakthrough hit, selling more 10,000,000 copies in less than a year and reaching the top five in over thirty countries, such as New Zealand and the United Kingdom, and the top 10 in Australia, plus top 30 in Canada and United States.

She released her debut album in August 2011, titled Saxobeats. The album spawned two more singles: “Get Back” and “1,000,000”, the latter featuring rapper Carlprit. On 4 June 2012, she released a new single, “Lemonade” taking a different musical direction away from her initial euro dance sound.

Following a break Alexandra’s newest single is called “Thanks For Leaving” released on 28 April 2014. It foretells a different musical direction to a more reflective, mature pop sound. This video, filmed in the US, also represents an expressive, autobiographical approach and a clear attempt to appeal more internationally.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

GIG – Martha’s Man at The Railway Inn – Friday 13th June 2014

martha manWho is Martha’s Man? Well, I am an evolving solo singer songwriter who keeps changing every day. I don’t want to fit a particular mould, I just do what comes naturally to me…

I picked up my first ‘pen’ after I listened to The Beatles, because I wanted to write songs as catchy as theirs. Although The Beatles were my initial inspiration, I am influenced by so many different artists andgenres, past and present. As long as the song is catchy and/or the music is sound, I will probably like it. I believe there is no wrong or right when it comes to music, you either connect with it or you don’t, almost like fancying someone – someone’s toad is another’s prince.

The guitar came later, around the time of my University days… I had already learnt how to tailor my lyrics and melodies around other people’s chord progressions, but I wanted to learn my own chord structures. So I taught myself how to play and I have been working my lyrics around my own music ever since.

Fast forward to present day and you will find me playing acoustic gigs and festival slots around the South Coast of England. But what can you expect from a Martha gig if you have never been to one before? I’m loud. What I mean by this is that my singing voice is often louder than my softer acoustic counter-parts.

My passion seems to channel itself in the way I propel my voice. I am not what I would refer to as a ‘fiddley’ guitar player, I like my rhythms and chord progressions.

What do I write about… very rarely is it about me. I often write about situations that I see my friends find themselves in. They could be sat in the audience singing along to one of my songs without realising its about them.

I do love for people to interpret their own meaning of the song and find comparisons with their own lives. To connect in this way is amazing!

Above all, I want my songs to be catchy and melodic, for you to walk away singing or humming my song after one listen. If I’ve done that, I’ve accomplished all that I stand for.

Gig – The Enemy at the Wedgewood Rooms – Thursday 12th June 2014

the enemyThe Enemy (The Enemy UK in the United States) are an English indie rock band formed in Coventry in 2006).

The band’s debut album We’ll Live and Die in These Towns (2007) went straight to Number 1 in the UK Albums chart on release. Their second album Music for the People (2008) went to Number 2 on the UK Albums chart. Streets in the Sky, their third studio album, was released on 21 May 2012 and was also their third UK top 10 album.

Drummer Liam Watts and bass player Andy Hopkins originate from Coventry, while frontman and multi-instrumentalist Tom Clarke is originally from Birmingham, later moving to Coventry. Clarke attended Finham Park Secondary School in the city during his teenage years, with Hopkins attending Heart of England School in nearby Balsall Common, while Watts studied at the city’s Cardinal Newman secondary school.

They first gained acclaim when they were mentioned in NME as the act most likely to “break your windows” for 2007. They supported Oasis, The Fratellis, Kasabian, The Paddingtons, Ash, Manic Street Preachers and Stereophonics on their UK tours.

The Enemy aim to make music about friendship and social commentary like The Jam & The Libertines. Tom Clarke has said that bands such as The Clash and Oasis have had a “huge influence on our friendships within the band and with our families. These bands taught us to open our hearts”

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia