Venue Talk: Doe on Brudenell Social Club, Leeds.

I spoke to the indie trio Doe about their favourite live venue, which is Leeds’ Brudenell Social Club. The band are building up to the release of their second album ‘Grow Into It’ on the 28th September. Check out their latest single ‘Labour Like I Do’ below, and read what they had to say about the social club.

“After careful consideration, Brudenell Social Club in Leeds.”

“Leeds is generally a lovely place to play with a great music scene (special s/o to also excellent Wharf Chambers), so the audience is always really mixed and responsive. The sound at Brudenell is always good, the toilets are clean (extremely important) and there’s loads of space to chill / chat / hang out so you’re not cooped up in one intense gig space.”

Have you ever played there?

“Yes we’ve played there a few times on tour and are playing there again in October with Speedy Ortiz.”

Who else have you seen there?

“Only really the other bands we’ve played with because we’re not from Leeds, but they were all GREAT.”

Brudenell Facts:

  • Upcoming shows at the Brudenell include Albert Hammond Jr, Mitski and Teleman.
  • The Social club was established December 8th, 1913
  • Kaiser Chiefs, Franz Ferdinand, The Cribs, Four Tet and The Fall have all played at the Social Club.
  • It is a community ‘non profitmaking’ venue, that holds charitable status.
  • Photography, Film and even Origami groups meet up at the Brudenell.

You  can pre-order Doe’s album here, and check out upcoming events at the Brudenell here.

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My Big Mental Head Interview

I had a chat to Connie from My Big Mental head about the mental health based project, billed as a ‘safe space for musicians and fans to openly talk about their mental health’ and how important it is to her.

“I started MBMH for a number of different reasons but the main two were the fact that I was starting to feel as though my original blog, where I just wrote reviews, wasn’t doing what I wanted it to and it wasn’t helping people or inspiring people.”
I wanted to feel like I was impacting at least one person and so I started to feel like it was a waste of time. This then ties in with the second reason which was IDLES.”

“I had recently become a fan of them and their music inspired me to get back into all of my creative hobbies, when, at the time, I was feeling depressed and unmotivated. It made me want to give something back to them, along with all the other bands and musicians that have helped me in the past, all of which have suffered themselves.”

When I asked her why she specifically decided to focus on the Music industry, this is what she had to say:
“The music industry is something that I grew up learning about, due to my aunty being in a band in the 90s. I learnt about the pressures and the hardships and I heard all the horror stories. “

“My love for music and my passion for supporting bands and artists blossomed from this and I always made it my mission to ensure that these musicians are being supported and treated fairly. “

“I think that bands, artists, fans, managers, sound engineers – everyone that contributes to the music industry – need to take the leap and talk about mental health. It’s a domino effect – when one band speaks out about something that they have been through or experienced, someone that has had a similar experience will feel comfortable enough to talk, too. Everyone just needs to be supportive and non-judgmental.”
You can find out more about  My Big Mental Head here, and follow them on Twitter at @mybigmentalhead.

New Release Roundup: 10th August 2018

Twenty One Pilots – Levitate: The third track taken from Top’s upcoming ‘Trench’ album signifies the biggest shift in sound from the duo, with a fairly chill, vibey beat underneath Tyler’s rapped verses. It’s a short one too, coming in at just over 2 minutes. 70%

Ray Blk – Run Run: A catchy, thoughtful track from Ray Blk here giving an autobiographical perception of violence and crime in London. A very nicely produced beat and a good, heartfelt vocal performance. 80%

She Drew The Gun – Resister: This is the lead single from She Drew The Gun’s upcoming album ‘Revolution of Mind’ out in October, and it’s a brilliant galloping, groovy rock track. Sick. 90%

Leadley – Like I Did: Pleasantly surprised by this new Leadley track; great vocals from Bethan over a really groovy synth-pop production makes this her best track so far. 80%

Anteros – Call Your Mother: Reaally like this new one from Anteros. With an instantly infectious chorus and the best performance by the band i’ve heard so far, this is by far their best song to date and I’m very excited for what’s next. 94%

Nina Nesbitt – Loyal To Me: This has been in my head since Nina played it at Tramlines a few weeks ago and I’m glad to report it’s still a bop. Hopefully going to be a massive hit for her. 90%

Tkay Maidza ft. Duckwrth – Flexxin: An aaaabsolute banger. Amazing beat, amazing bars from both Tkay and Duckwrth. 93%

Jetta – Fool: A great funky, synth-pop track from Jetta here, with the great production on the track giving off a really rich layered sound without it being too cluttered or messy. Niiice. 80%

L.S.D. – Thunderclouds: L.S.D. is Labrinth, Sia and Diplo. Despite all this great musical power behind the track this one falls a bit flat to me, feeling uninspired and just forgettable. 40%

Maland2016 – M-Sides: A really solid debut release from upcoming Canadian electronic producer Maland2016. A groovy, varied collection of videogame-esque tracks. 80%

Venue Talk: Gengahr on The Astoria

I chatted to John from Gengahr about his fave live music venue. He chose the late Astoria in London. Watch Gengahr’s video for ‘Before Sunrise’ below, then check out the interview.

Can I choose one that no longer exists? The Astoria. Saw so many great bands there, it was the perfect size and if you found the right spot it sounded great either downstairs or upstairs.

“You could sit down upstairs if you were knackered. Also it was twinned with the Mean Fiddler and after many years we worked out how to get downstairs to the separate venue without anyone seeing so you could get two gigs for the price of one. This was only useful once when there was a great support band downstairs and a great headline act upstairs.

Unfortunately I didn’t make any music anyone would want to hear before it got torn down. The gap by Tottenham Court Road station still makes me sad.

I got to see loads of stuff there. A lot of US rock stuff as well as U.K. Indie. I think the last gig I went to was Rancid. I saw Death Cab For Cutie and my mate fell asleep upstairs on the chairs, entirely apt for that band. Saw Biffy Clyro at there last London show before they signed to a major and changed a fair bit.

“I saw a UK band called Seafood that was great, the album ‘when do we start fighting’ is worth looking up. I saw Regina Spektor there before she got really big, I think it was the only time she had a full band and she did some truly awful dancing, probably why she sat behind the piano the rest of her career. The video for Radioheads ‘my iron lung’ is shot there (I’m pretty sure), I wish I was around for that gig.”

Venue Facts

  • The Astoria originally opened as a cinema!
  • It was sadly closed in 2009.
  • Richey Edwards had his last live performance with the Manic Street Preachers in the Astoria.
  • Radiohead, Smashing Pumpkins, Feeder and The Cranberries all had live albums recorded at the Astoria.
  • Nirvana, The Strokes, Prince, Blur, Bowie, Madonna and Oasis all played the Astoria.

Gengahr’s second album, Where Wildness Grows, is out now (and its bloody good.) Buy it here or stream it here.

New Release Roundup 3rd August 2018

Interpol – Number 10:

Another great track from New York indie legends Interpol. Paul still has it vocally, with his performance here being as strong and emotional as ever. 80%

No Rome – Saint Laurent: A well produced, very pleasant and nicely sung but in my opinion ‘Saint Laurent’ is a bit of a dull and uninspired track here from No Rome. I like the ending though with the nice guitary instrumental. 65%

Robyn – Missing U: I quite like this new song by Robyn but it isnt quite the banger i was expecting. It has a really lovely, twinkly instrumental however and a very good hook. I think its a grower. 65%

Black Honey – Midnight: Midnight is a disco-pop banger done very well. Black Homey’s debut album could be a bit more varied than i had anticipated. Sound of the summer potential. Nice. 80%

Yonaka – Waves: An absolute banger of a song from Yonaka here. A really groovy bassline and pounding drums give the track a dark tinge, with singer Theresa Jarvis’ vocals really pushing the track up another level. 90%

Ten Tonnes – G.I.V.E. – An very, very catchy summery indie-pop cut from Ten Tonnes sounding a bit like The Magic Gang but in a good way. 75%

Neneh Cherry – Kong: With amazing production on this track by 3D of Massive Attack and Four Tet, Neneh has put together a really interesting, brilliant track, with her vocals perfectly complimenting the great, minimalistic instrumental. 95%

Kid Bookie – Shake Up EP: A very solid grime EP from Bookie here, packing so much into a collection of tracks that only lasts about 15 minutes is no small feat? The highlight for me is the emotional, honest ending track. His most cohesive project to date. 80%

Gengahr – Live LP: A great little live album recorded on tour before recording their lastest album, with tracks from that being played for the first time as well as some faves from their debut. Very lovely. 90%