Monthly Archives: April 2012

Dan Mangan Releases Mini Documentary

Dan Mangan

Folk artist Dan Mangan

Dan Mangan is back with a mini documentary, European tour and single release. Not too much eh?

The documentary follows Dan Mangan on a journey through the British Columbia countryside where he talks about the roots of his music and what helps him to produce his highly acclaimed folk music.

Dan Mangan is also currently on his European tour and will be back in the UK this week in time for his single release. About As Helpful As You Can Be Without Being Any Help At All will be released on April 30 and is taken from last year’s album, Oh Fortune.

Dan Mangan will be playing the following UK shows:

APRIL

27th: BRIGHTON, The Hope

28th: MANCHESTER, Castle

29th: GLASGOW, Stereo

MAY

1st: NEWCASTLE, Cluny 2

2nd: BRISTOL, Louisiana

3rd: LONDON, Bush Hall

4th: OXFORD, Jericho Tavern

5th: LEEDS, Holy Trinity Church

6th: LONDON, Camden Crawl

AUGUST

17-19th: SUMMER SUNDAE WEEKENDER, Leicester

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Doldrums signs to Souterrain Transmissions

Doldrums

Doldrums single artwork

Doldrums has signed to record label Souterrain Transmissions to release their forthcoming three track single, Egypt.

Ahead of their European tour with Grimes and appearances at The Great Escape and Dot to Dot festivals, Doldrums will release the three track single on limited edition 12″ vinyl and digital download on June 4.

Egypt is a track full of influences from the UK and European electronic music scene but it has a huge foot print of North American style stamped across it.

Listen to the track here.

See Doldrums live at the following shows:

MAY
11 Brighton, UK @ The Haunt, Great Escape
11 Brighton, UK @ Great Escape venue TBA
15 Strasbourg, FR @ La Laterie (Supporting Grimes)
16 Paris, FR @ La Fleche D’or (Supporting Grimes)
20 Amsterdam, NL @ Exio
22 Oslo, NO @ Blaa (Supporting Grimes)
23 Stockholm, SE @ Cafetreaten (Supporting Grimes)
24 Malmo, SE @ Inkonst (Supporting Grimes)
25 Berlin, GER @ Berghain (Supporting Grimes)
26 Hamburg, GER @ Ubel & Gefarlich (Supporting Grimes)
28 Rome, IT @ Circulo Degli Artisti (Supporting Grimes)
29 Ravenna, IT @ Hanni Bi (Supporting Grimes)
30 Turin, IT @ Astoria (Supporting Grimes)

JUNE
Bristol, UK @ Dot To Dot Festival
Nottingham, UK @ Dot To Dot Festival
Manchester, UK @ Dot To Dot Festival

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Maglia Rosa Group Interview

Maglia Rosa Group are a pop quartet from East Anglia but this isn’t pop in the modern form. There’s no cheesy lyrics, stupid dance routines or crazy outfits Lady GaGa style here. The Beatles, the Beach Boys and other bands such as the Monkees were all classed as pop bands once upon a time. Maglia Rosa Group mean pop in that form.

Consisting of brother and sister, Daisy Lawrence (lead vocals, guitar, synth-organ, flute) and Sam Lawrence (guitar/piano/backing vocals) with Owen Cox (drums), Matt Gadd (bass), Maglia Rosa Group produce music that would be hard to come across elsewhere. Combining chilled rock, slightly thematic music with operatic and classical vocals, this band sure do bring something completely new to the music scene.

Having been enticed by their newly recorded track Solace, I decided to find out more about this pretty unknown band. Sam Lawrence answers all my burning questions.

How long have you been together?

The band have been together for about a year now, although being bro and sis, Daisy and I have been playing and writing together for many a year.

Maglia Rosa Group

Maglia Rosa Group

How did you all meet?

I met Daisy during my infancy, shortly after her debut on planet earth. On being introduced, I’m told I tried to bite her. I was only one and a half.

Owen responded via e-mail to an advertisement we put up in a local music shop. Although he emailed us just a month or so after the ad, by that time we’d kind of forgotten to keep checking the email account we created for it. Eight or nine months after posting the ad, we inexplicably decided we would check it. On sifting through reams of months old emails, we tried to make contact with those who hadn’t since moved, changed email address, found a new band, or died. That narrowed the list somewhat. It turned out Owen was among those still living and, as it happened, he was also the most talented at hitting things. We liked him and luckily he liked us too and so that, as they say, was that. Now we’re hardly ever apart except for non-band practice times.

Looking back, I should have just posted my personal email address on the ad and none of the above lunacy would have come to pass. Still, that’s life. One minute you’re not checking a forgotten email account, the next minute you’re in Maglia Rosa Group.

By a stroke of good fortune we found Matt under a rock one day whilst out on a band walk. NOT! We actually found him by a stroke of good fortune on the world wide internet web.

What made you decide to make the music you do?

Well, thats a tough nut to crack. I think for me its just something that has to be done and it comes out how it comes out. That sounds unsatisfactory but I can’t think there’s an overly interesting reason as to why I must periodically pick up a piece of wood strung with metal wire and pluck away at it until it makes noises that I like.

Who are your influences?

No matter how corny the production is or talentless the singer is or lousy the lyrics are or emotionally manipulative and dishonest the writing is, I still find some pop songs very seductive. That said, most mainstream music sounds pretty ugly today. I think electronic things are starting to influence the way we write now, as well as artists such as Kate Bush, The Beach Boys, Talk Talk. People that have stood the rather demanding test of time.

Would you say your band and its music are original? Having a classically trained voice with modern music is rather unheard of…

Well, Daisy’s voice certainly helps us approach the ‘pop’ genre from a different perspective. She was a choir girl once (albeit very briefly) and that juxtaposition of a choral sounding tone with instruments more conventionally associated with the pop than classical genre hopefully produces some interesting results. It certainly directs much of our writing – the nature of her voice kind of sets the parameters for the songs, in terms of what they will be able to deliver lyrically and emotionally.

She’s also recently developed a new technique which I think makes her sound much better than ever she has done before. I’m really looking forward to hearing it recorded on our new stuff. But I’m her big brother so I guess I’m a bit biased.

Maglia Rosa Group

Maglia Rosa Group

What genre would you place your music in, if any? Maybe you have created a new genre…?

Well I’m happy to call it pop but I use the term loosely.

Who writes the songs? 

Daisy and I tend to always write together – unless we’re going through one of our  periods of temporary estrangement. Typically when writing, we’ll be hurling obscenities at each other in one breath then saying something complimentary in the next. It can get quite volatile but that often helps us work out whatever it is we’re trying to achieve. It can also be quite hilarious.

 If you could all choose one musician each to dine with (dead or alive) who would you choose? 

We talked about this in band practice last week and all agreed that we’d choose each other. We’re a very loving band. I think dining with anyone you admire would inevitably result in disappointment and disillusionment (and indigestion). You know the old adage ,‘Never meet your heroes”?

You can find Maglia Rosa Group’s music on their facebook page – click here.

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Gaggle – From the Mouth of the Cave

Female choir Gaggle is to release its debut album titled From the Mouth of the Cave on June 4 through Transgressive Records. The first single to be taken from the record is Army of Birds which will be available from May 21.

Gaggle female choir

The colourful choir, Gaggle

The 21-strong choir is led by Deborah Coughlin who co-writes songs with Simon Dempsey. Gaggle formed in 2008 and started as a vision for Coughlin, a vision of a mass of women onstage. Since then, Gaggle has continued to grow in popularity from playing their first gig at Club NME, Koko, to being named as one of NME’s Top 50 Innovators. There’s no holding back this fully female choir.

From the Mouth of the Cave is a record designed to conjure up images of a futuristic carnival or celebration. It tells of stories about trying to be powerful in a group (Army of Birds), about being alienated (Lullaby), about economics (The Power of Money) and about leaving things behind that aren’t good for you (From the Mouth of the Cave).

Gaggle is something extraordinary. It’s definitely innovative in a time when all music seems to sound the same. You’ll find the choirs’ ability outstanding and the result just as mesmerising.

The teaser for Army of Birds is below:

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Two Wounded Birds Announce Debut Album

Rock ‘n’ Roll band Two Wounded Birds are back with their debut album due for release on June 4.

The self-titled debut album will be released through The Drums’ Jacob Graham’s record label, Holiday Recording Friends. To accompany the release of their album, they have numerous shows lined up including a tour with Glasvegas which started last week in London as well as a Tracy Emin Exhibition in their home town of Margate, Kent.

Two Wounded Birds

Two Wounded Birds

Two Wounded Birds have managed to grab the attention of Debbie Harry and Brian Wilson after their single and EP releases. Not only this but they also managed to land themselves gigs playing shows with Grouplove, The Black Lips and The Drums among other festivals.

Jacob Graham (The Drums) describes Two Wounded Birds’ music: “It’s easy to see why these rising stars caught the ears of such legends as Brian Wilson and Debbie Harry. Their songs capture the American spirit with clear allegiances to the Beach Boys, the Ramones and Elvis—all while still acknowledging the band’s British roots. You won’t hear any Elton John-style American accents here; instead Johnny Danger’s sound recalls the velvety tones of Colin Blunstone in his Zombies heyday—a voice with true character.

“In an age in which the shroud of “pop” can describe any poorly constructed jingle that comes along, it’s nice to see the dust settle and discover the genuine article…. Here you will find proof that sincere pop songs are truly timeless.”

Take a listen to three previously recorded songs here.

Two Wounded Birds remaining live tour dates below:

May 5th Live At Leeds

May 6th Camden Crawl Last FM @ Dingwalls.

May 26th Margate The Turner Gallery, Tracey Emin Exhibition opening

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Plastic Youth

Plastic Youth are a young band from Southend Essex about to unleash their first full release. Spending the last year running circles around their gig circuit, they have managed to land themselves a deal with Libertines/Dirty Pretty Things’ Gary Powell on his label, ’25 Convenience Store.

Plastic Youth

Plastic Youth

Their first release will be two tracks titled Death Row and Animal Style. The singles will be available for free download and limited edition seven inch vinyl.

After slipping into the studio with Verve and Black Ships’ guitarist Nick McCabe last year, Plastic Youth have gained massive support from the likes of Alan McGee who tweeted after hearing their demo, “I hope this is the first nail in the coffin for Mumford and Sons”.

Hearing Plastic Youth’s sound transports you back to the days of Oasis and the 90s when pop rock was at its height. Death Row is a song about the fall of society and was the first track produced by Nick McCabe. It has husky vocals with heavy grunge 90s rock music accompanying them. The grumpy attitude of the band added to these elements of the track makes it all fit together perfectly.

Animal Style is a little less in your face. With softer vocals and more of a laid back Oasis-esque feel to it, it’s a pleasant track to listen to. The musical instrumental between the chorus and verse brings forward the happier and fun side of the band that is lacking in Death Row.

Death Row and Animal Style will be available from 23 April.

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Stealing Signs – Roman House

Emerging from what they call the “sexy end of Essex”, the indie rock/pop dance quartet Stealing Signs are about to release their forthcoming single, Roman House.

Stealing Signs Roman House

Stealing Signs Roman House

With their first single hitting number 14 on iTunes’ Rock Chart on the day of its release and gaining radio play from BBC Radio 1 to BBC Essex and beyond, Stealing Signs have caused a bit of a stir in the music industry.

Their upcoming single Roman House shows what they are all about with quirky guitar riffs and gentle vocals which blend to make a great indie track to listen to. Their influences can be heard clearly in this song with elements of Bombay Bicycle Club shining through.

Roman House has a cracking chorus of “Nothing fits in our home and you won’t move on your own” which won’t fail to get you singing along. The rhythm and melody of the track are spot on lending it to become a great party tune, especially for the fast approaching summer months.

The EP also contains three other remixes of the song. They have been done by Jake Bullit who has produced a Daft Punk inspired remix. The other remixes have been created by bloggers favourite Das Heat and Fluttert who hails from the Netherlands.

Roman House will be released on 23 April through Noise Kitten and will be available on iTunes and all other digital stores. Pre-order is available from 9 April.

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