Live review: Yard Act with Baba Ali at Exchange Bristol – 21/02/2022

Over the last year, British post-punk band Yard Act have gone from strength to strength, going from playing little basement stages to selling out venues across the country in a short space of time. We managed to catch them at Exchange Bristol earlier this week, and this is what we thought.

The show was opened by Baba Ali, a London based Techno-Funk duo. These guys played us a range of their songs, some released, some unreleased, to a warm and very appreciative crowd. There was lots of people moving around and enjoying the music, even if they didn’t know the words.

Although not most matching of the sounds of Yard Act, these guys still did their job of warming up the crowd well, and I’ll certainly be seeing them again live if I get the chance.

And before long it was onto the main act of the night. The room was full and there was a buzzing energy, and the self-confessed Robbie Williams of post punk came onto the stage for a belter of a show.

I think the reason why these boys have gained so much popularity recently is because they are just so relatable. Just 4 guys trying to make it in the world and trying to make something work.

With songs about politics, life, love, and everyday normal stuff, they are certainly rocking the new wave of post-punk indie music that is currently sweeping the country, and they are doing it well! If you are a fan of Sports Team, Sea Girls or Wet Leg, I’m sure you’ll find something you love in Yard Act too!

The energy they came on stage with was kept up throughout the night, as more of the crowd got into the songs and the mosh pit got bigger. Front man James was interacting with the crowd well, having a laugh and joke with them, and even trying some magic tricks on stage! One thing I love about gigs in Bristol is how much of a mixed crowd you always get, and everyone there was enjoying just as much as the band was enjoying playing on stage. They even brought an audience member onto the stage to help with one song.

For the big finish of the night (The Overload, I think), these guys brought it all out, going absolutely insane with energy on stage, and the crowd brought their A game one more time, with even an attempted stage dive from one brave audience member! When I say these guys play hard, I really mean it.

If you ever get the chance to see Yard Act live, I would highly recommend you take it! They’ll be playing Marble Factory in Bristol in November, tickets can be found here.

I’d like to say a massive thank you to Yard Act and Baba Ali for putting on an awesome show, and to the guys at Chuff Media for inviting me down to the show. These guys are destined for greatness, get on board now!

Photos and words by Ted Stargatt for TrueStyleMusic

We chatted to TASH about their new single Hurricane Man

Can you tell us a bit about Tash? Where are you from and how did you all meet?

I grew up in Chichester (near Portsmouth), Robbie is from Brighton and we both met whilst at university in London studying music. Found we had a love for the same artists and were able to truly commit to a project like this and the rest is history really.

Why the name Tash?

Good question, we seem to get this a lot with a lot of comments about ‘moustache’ ! Not sure how that seems relevant to a female-fronted alt-rock band but it seems to be something many have fallen apon! Haha! Originally we wanted to be called TRASH, but as the music developed and realised there was someone else out there called TRASH, we settled on TASH. We have always loved bands with a women’s name in them e.g Wolf Alice, think it creates a great persona considering my name is actually Tara.

If you had to sum yourselves up in three words, what would you say?

Chaotic, inclusive and impatient 

You recently released your new single Hurricane Man. What does this song mean to you guys, as a band?

Hurricane Man is our first single of the year and we wanted to set the scene for what is to come in the rest of 2022, it is our heaviest yet and certainly a favourite to play live. From the moment I heard the riff I knew the lyrics had to be just as destructive and hoped that once listened to, it could be used as an outlet and release.

Who produced it? Have you worked with them before? How did you find working with them?

So Robbie does all our producing for us in house, I feel very lucky to work with him as he does so much! But with this track, we were approached by The Motor Museum legend Al Groves who mixed the track, helping create that ‘punch in the face’ style we wanted, it’s safe to say we were very happy with the results.

What is next for you guys?

Just over a week after Hurricane Man came out we were very lucky to get signed to ITB, so planning some very exciting shows and hopefully some festivals. We feel this release is hopefully the start of something big for us – with a couple more releases heading your way over the next few months and some very exciting support slots to announce shortly.

Elly Robert

If you had to give some advice to those looking to make music, what would you say?

I would say persistence is key, it’s taken us a long time to get to where we are now and if I had stopped I wouldn’t have the opportunity to see where it would take me. Especially on those days where you feel like you want to quit, those are the most important because they just help you build more resilience and belief in yourself in the future.

Where can we find out more about you?

Using this link you have access to what we are up to at the moment:

https://linktr.ee/wearetash

Or by following our most used social media, Instagram: @wearetash.  

We chatted to SUKKO about their new EP A VIOLENT DEEP FEEL

Released back on the 11th February, this new release had a lot of hot competition out the same day. We thought it would be good to chat to Eliot from the band about all things music

Can you tell us a bit about yourselves? Where are you from and how did the band start?

We are a 5-piece alt-indie band formed in Norwich, we write and record our own music straight out of a bedroom (or occasionally our kitchen). From what originally began as a duo back in 2018, Sukko has gradually grown and evolved into our current fully fleshed out line-up; which has given us the means to express ourselves when we play shows and give our audience that extra bit of live energy. Having moved about for university, we are now dotted all over the country in Norfolk, Lincoln, Sheffield and York. Naturally, we’ve had to overcome the obstacle of living so far from each other with virtual online writing sessions and frequent video calls. But on the other hand, we’ve had the opportunity to play in many different cities at such an early point in the band’s journey!

What made you decide on the name Sukko? It’s certainly an interesting choice

Haha yeah definitely an interesting choice! It took us a long time to come up with a unique name that hadn’t been used before and equally reflected our personality. Throughout our music we frequently allude to themes surrounding floating and the calmness that comes with being on water. We chose Sukko as our name, after lake Sukko in Russia. It’s a beautiful and peaceful looking place with a unique name, and definitely somewhere we’d love to visit!

If we were to use the phrase for fans of, who would you liken yourselves to?

As a band, our music tastes vary quite drastically. All the way from punk to neo soul and jazz. It initially made pinning down our own sound and genre challenging. We draw a lot of our inspiration from Radiohead and Pink Floyd, there’s something about the purity of their music that really appeals to us, you can tell that it hasn’t been tampered with by modern music production methods. We also liken our sound to bands such as Foals, Wolf Alice and Bombay Bicycle Club.

You released today your new EP A Violent Deep Feel, what does it mean to you, as a band?

We’ve been working on this EP for a long time now. The recording process began back in 2020 which seems absolutely crazy, but things take slightly longer when you’re a band who is self-producing. Naturally it feels incredibly satisfying to see your own music being released into the world, especially when you receive positive feedback on a track. But with A Violent Deep Feel, we really wanted to use the record to address and raise awareness to some specific topics that we had been troubled by recently. Throughout the EP we discuss how important mental health awareness is in this modern age we live in, and how living through the covid-19 pandemic has been so distressing for so many people. However, we’ve also witnessed some shocking and appalling stories regarding racial and gender equality, to such extreme consequences which have truly highlighted how much work we must do as a society to eliminate discrimination based on an individuals race or sexuality. As a band, we are committed to spreading this message and we wanted to use our music to shed light on some of these topics which are not spoken about enough. A Violent Deep Feel is not necessarily an attack on society, but rather a means to encourage self-reflection and improvement.

What’s your favourite track from the EP?

I think I speak for us all when I say that our favourite song is the final track on the record, titled ‘Look’. We chose not to release this one as a single leading up to the full EP launch as we really wanted it to be heard in context and as a final closing message. Out of all of the songs on the EP, ‘Look’ is the one that calls to action and addresses the topics mentioned previously head on. It’s not aggressive, more passionate. The song discusses how those who are lucky enough to not be on the receiving end of abuse have a responsibility to educate themselves on discrimination, sexism, racial injustice. To do what we can to stand in solidarity. Many of us do not possess the ability to relate to people who are in these positions of pain. I don’t know how it feels to be mistreated in the way so many people have, but I must not be complacent. There is a lack of action preventing prejudice. People simply “look on” while horrific injustice happens all over the world. We are stuck in the belief that we can’t make a difference. A vital message of this EP is that change can and should happen for the better. People must be given equal opportunities. Race, gender, sexuality should not be a cause for discrimination. Yet they are, still. We must educate ourselves. We have a responsibility to enforce a change. With enough belief and action, change can and must happen.

Are there any tracks that are much different from how you initially imagined it would be? How did you come to the decision to make the song in that way?

I think the song that went through the most change and development was ‘In My Head’. This track was the first initial idea that we had for the EP and in its raw form sounded drastically different to the final version. With so many different inspirations, our initial ideas for songs often come out sounding very different to the previous one. We then gradually tailor them towards the ‘Sukko sound’. In My Head began sounding very electronic with drum machines and synth lead melodies. Over time we added more guitars to replace some of the synth parts, playing this song live helped massively with finding our vision for this one. But the triggered drum machine aesthetic remained throughout the production process, only giving in to real drums for the final chorus.

Is there anything you encountered that you didn’t expect to encounter when creating your new music?

There were definitely many challenges and obstacles during the making of this EP, not to mention working and recording through the pandemic. But I think the biggest surprise was simply how long the whole process took from start to finish. Most of these new songs you’re hearing were written in the summer of 2020, but the initial ideas stemmed further back to 2019, and only now in 2022 are we releasing them. For sure the distance between us all slowed the process down, but the major time killer was our desire to get each track right, and to feel right. With this kind of lyrical content we had to approach the creation process in a delicate way, and I think it just took time to get the tone right, we didn’t want these songs to come across in the wrong way. As mentioned, this EP should ultimately have a positive conclusion, to help change for the better.

Are there any plans to take Sukko on the road, and play some live shows?

Yes!!! We definitely have plans to get back out there and return to the live scene. Having recently played our first ever headline show in Norwich back in September, we’re looking to hit the ground running and build on that night! I’m sure I speak for every artist out there when I say we truly missed playing live in 2020 and the first half of 2021. I think it’s made us a lot more appreciative of the experience of playing a show and we’re so grateful to have that opportunity again. As mentioned, one of the perks of being dotted around the country is that we have a foot in the door of a few different cities. We’re also keen to get to areas of the country that we’ve never played before as well, Leeds, Nottingham, Bristol to name a few!

What’s next for Sukko?

Hopefully more of the same! We’ve recently started recording our second EP which should be ready for the summer! We’re constantly trying to improve ourselves as songwriters and musicians, and I’m confident that the next EP will be another big step up. We’ve just announced our next show in Norwich supporting local legends Pretty Terry on March the 4th. It’ll be our first show of 2022 so we’re very excited for that!

Where can we find out more about you?

The best place to keep up to date with us and our music is on Instagram @sukkoband, from there you’ll be able to find links to our music on Spotify, and our frequent video uploads to YouTube!

 Anything else you would like to tell us?

 I think that’s everything covered!! 

I’d like to thank Eliot and the rest of the band for taking the time to answer our questions, and wish them the best of luck with the new EP and with whatever comes next

Album review: Frank Turner FTHC

Frank Turner’s highly anticipated new album, FTHC is out now. Like most albums these days, a few songs have already been released as singles, and one even had a mini tour named after it. But for this album, most of the songs have already seen the light of day in one way or another, whether that is a live stream or a real life show. As always, this album review is based on the first listening to the album as a whole.

Non-Serviam

Short, sweet and angry, this song sets the prescience for this album perfectly. It goes hard and makes no apologies for it, in a way we haven’t seen from Frank for a long time.

For me, this song shows a new attitude to life for Frank. With lines like “I know who I am, Non-Serviam”, although quoted from Lucifer, it feel like Frank is taking that on himself. He has matured, he knows where he is in life now, and is no longer going to take anything from anyone.

When this was first released, lots of people commented that it sounded like the old days of Million Dead – and rightly so, it certainly does sound like one of theirs. I think this is a way of Frank going back to his old ways, but as his new self. Heavy and angry, but also matured and firm in who he is now, and able to make better decisions.

What a way to open the album.

The Gathering

If you haven’t heard this song by now, what rock have you been hiding under?

A lockdown song (there had to be one), but one that is more triumphant and positive that a lot of them out there. This song has already rocked many live crowds and will continue to rock many more.

Haven’t Been Doing So Well

Released on day 1 of Lost Evenings IV, and played 3 times over the 4 days, this song is a stark and almost brutal look at mental health, while keeping it in a Frank Turner rock-and-roll way. This song has it all, with tongue twisters, guitar solos and crowd singalongs, it just works.

The everyday struggles of life are explored well, making this one we can all relate to. There are certainly days when I haven’t been doing so well, and I’m sure there are many out there who feel the same. But at the same time, there is still a personal touch to it. Frank mentions Mohammed Ali, not for the first time in his music (and also not the last time on the album), and he really knows his own struggles and where he is in life.

Untainted Love

A real turn in direction from previous Frank Turner albums, this one keep up the theme so far seen in the first songs. Although a little cheesy on the rhymes, the song still rocks out. I can only imagine the state of the crowd when this gets played live, a true punk rock song if ever I heard one!

Lyrically, this song is another one on the deeper end of the emotional spectrum, exploring Frank’s past substance use, and the dark places that took him. This is something I’ve noticed Frank be a lot more open and honest about, especially when talking about some of his older songs, like Nights Become Days. Maybe this is a note back to the older days, after all, FTHC marks the 10 year anniversary of England Keep My Bones.

In the latter half of the song, it goes into a personal monologue, with Frank really expressing where he took himself to, but also where he is now and what in the end, saved him. Life isn’t about being off you face all the time, but so much more.

Fatherless

The opening of this one took me by surprise, a piano solo? This one must be different.

Ah, there it is, the drums before it gets seriously loud and angry.

At Lost Evenings last year, Frank mentioned that this song forms the first of a trio, with My Bad and Miranda completing it, and tells the full story of his upbringing and relationship with his father. As part one, this tells the story of his youth, and being sent to boarding school, away from home and his family, and how for most of his life he didn’t have a father.

Although a heavy start, the end becomes a lot more ‘folk-y’, with the chorus and verses becoming full of lyrics and personal stories. Even to end there is a crowd singalong, similar to older songs. Although there is still the anger that was present in that song, this time it is a lot more resolved and there is an end to it.

My Bad

This is the shortest song of the album, coming in at 1:44, and really gets straight to it. I know Frank is a big fan of NOFX, and this is certainly one in their style, even down to the slightly mismatched drums vs guitar, and Frank not so much singing, but shouting. Very brash and in your face.

As my first listen, this song has been one that has been really difficult to understand and get my head around. Production wise, it feels less clean than all the other songs, and at points it isn’t easy to hear what Frank is saying.

But from what I do understand, it is an angry song about politics, and about the straight white guy always being in charge and getting what they want. Frank has always been passionate about bringing people who don’t fit into these categories into the spotlight, whether that is the bands booked for his support sets, his work with charities and even the album No Mans Land.

After listening a few more times, I’m starting to enjoy it more and get it more, and I think over time I’m sure it will be one I’ll love.

Ben Lloyd/The Sleeping Souls at Lost Evenings. I can imagine this song will be great as a full band on stage

Miranda

This song is obviously a very important song for Frank, and one that he had to make. And to me, I think he has done this really well. As a song, it shows his true feelings and experiences of his relationship with his Father – now Miranda, but also keeping the song in the style of the album, and while also keeping it restrained enough and respectful enough that it doesn’t feel overbearing or over the top. What I’m trying to say is, he got this one right.

One thing to note is the classic Frank Turner singalong, very similar to the one in Fathers Day, which is probably very deliberate. When Fathers Day was released, there was still a lot of pent up anger and unresolved feelings. Now those feelings have been resolved and the anger and resentment has started to fade.

Frank did an interview with The Guardian, and this does a much better job of exploring the thoughts and feelings behind this song that I ever could

A Wave Across A Bay

From what I gather, this song has been around for quite a while, and with the permission of Grant and the rest of the band, a tribute to Scott Hutchinson has made it onto FTHC.

This song, dedicated to Scott, is a perfect combination of his and Frank’s style, to make a song that is both unique, but also brilliant. A song that would happily be played by Frank or Scott. The almost bluntness style FR were known for, with strong powerful lyrics and sounds, are greatly accompanied by Frank’s writing style.

Lyrically, this is a really powerful song, exploring those final moments for Scott, and the thoughts and feelings associated, both for Scott and those who knew him – and even those who didn’t. To say there weren’t tears in my eyes the first time I heard it would be a lie.

It is through these words that we get the feeling that Scott, although not physically, is still with us, in spirit, in the music he made and in the tiny changes he helped inspire. Ever falling, never landing.

The Tiny Changes Foundation was set up in Scott’s honour to help young people suffering from mental health issues. You can find out more about them and donate here.

Frank Turner at day 1 of Lost Evenings, where he played A Wave Across A Bay

The Resurrectionists

This song was originally debuted on one of Frank’s live streams over the lockdowns, in the same one that The Gathering shows were first announced.

It is said to be inspired by Charles Dickens, and would probably feel more at home in a west end musical than a punk rock show. But what’s more punk than that?

This is another about growing up, and understanding yourself, again with some call backs to older work (although this time is pretty obvious which songs). I can imagine this one is a crowd pleaser, with plenty of easy to lean words and singalong sections. However I still can’t escape the thought of Frank doing a comical stage dance with the song (and maybe the souls as backing dancers).

The addition of Simon Neil from Biffy Clyro to close the song was unexpected but welcome.

Punches

Opening with an acapella start, followed by a classic punk riff, this one goes back to the earlier, heavier sound of the album. I think this song was played on a live stream a little while back, and from what I remember, the reaction online was incredibly positive.

This song reminds me of Plain Sailing Weather, not just in the sound but also in meaning. Plain Sailing Weather is about always messing up a good thing, but punches is about accepting that things go wrong but knowing now how to make the most of when things go right. More maturing on Frank’s part it seems.

Throwing in the crowd chant near the end was unexpected, but I love it and I’m sure it will be a hit on the live shows, keeping up that message of togetherness and making things better. Maybe even a new contender for show finisher?

Perfect Score

Keeping up with the indie-punk sound from the last one, it also keeps the feeling going. But this time there is a bit of an apology mixed in with it. “I’m genuinely sorry, for all the stupid things I’ve done”, a feeling we all have, as everyone has made some mistakes in the past.

This song is honest about perfection. Frank has always been the first to admit he is not perfect, but this one is coming to terms with the fact that everyone is the same, and learning from them and not making the mistakes from our past. There’s also some political jabs thrown in, similar to the song 1933 about history repeating itself, just not quite as in your face.

Finally there is also an element of calling people out on their BS, especially those who hide behind the screens. No one has a perfect score, weather that is on the screen playing call of duty or in real life.

 The Work

One of (if not the) first songs to see the light of day was The Work, which I first heard live in March 2020, and others I know heard it even earlier.

This song is a tribute to Frank’s wife, Jess Guise. But it’s also a song about daily life, doing ‘normal’ things and how he is no longer on tour, playing shows around the world all the time. But the key message of the song “the work that makes it worth it” really hits home. In many past songs and interviews Frank has made it clear that the life of a musician is not always all it’s cracked up to be, but in keeping of the spirit of the album Frank is making it better and really now putting “the work” in.

Sound wise, it is also keeping in the same theme as most other tracks, a new-ish indie-punk sound Frank has started to find for himself.

An extra note on this song, when I interviewed Frank back in August last year, I asked if working with Pet Needs had started to influence his new album, and although Frank claimed that it didn’t, this track stands out to me as one that certainly has a Pet Needs sound to it.

Little Life

This is the first song on the album which I have absolutely zero idea about before listening. All the others I have heard, either as a single, live or on a live stream, or have seen Frank talk about. But Little Life, no idea.

As a song, this one is a lot folky-er than the others, using an acoustic guitar to really drive the song forward. I think this still is a hark back to his earlier work, but this time songs like The Real Damage and My Kingdom For A Horse.

Another lockdown song, but Little Life is also about simplifying, and knowing when to make a change for the better (even if a global pandemic is what is needed), and when to slow down. The new post-lockdown Frank and Jess are changed, and although there is a hint of bitterness and sarcasm in the song, it is overall happy and loving. Even though this is a song dedicated to Jess, I think the message of forced relaxation caused by Lockdown is one many of us can relate to. I certainly have a better understanding of what it means to relax now.

Farewell To My City

The album ends with a rumination on leaving the capital after 7300 days for a new life on the Essex coast with the bittersweet ‘Farewell To My City’. It’s a mini autobiography rooted in time and place, but one that ultimately accepts that it’s time to move on.    – Frank Turner/Xtra Mile Recordings

The opening city sounds are a little confusing, especially with the spoken word over the bass solo. I did not see that coming.

This is certainly a song from Frank Turner, to Frank Turner, and is another song he really did need to write and release, for himself more than anyone else. He is leaving a place he once vowed never to leave, while reflecting on himself and his previous life, for one more time in this album. From the days of student life, Million Dead, skirting endless bars and venues and doing countless substances, he has realised he doesn’t need to be the person he once thought he would become.

As a song, it is really difficult to put my thoughts about it into words. I really enjoy listening to it the first time, but I don’t think it’s one I’ll be able to listen to often. And live? I’m not too sure.

However if you ever want a really angry walking tour of London, you’ve got that sorted.

The proper singing does start later on, and the song itself is starting to feel like a counter to This Town Ain’t Big Enough For The One Of Me. No longer is he longing for the big city and getting out of the boring life he thought of his childhood, but for the escape, peace and quiet. But I guess that’s growing up for you.

Well, what an album. One that certainly goes back to Frank’s routes, the music and ideology that he started with, but while also pushing himself in some new directions musically. I’d be lying if I didn’t think that part of it is to fit in with the new music trending at the moment, with the likes of Sam Fender and Declan McKenna, to name two. By no means is that a bad thing, I think it’s always good to try to be popular and get more fans.

There are some songs that I don’t think will make it into the regular live setlist (Farewell and Miranda), but there are also some which I think will become a regular – Haven’t Been Doing So Well, Non-Serviam, Punches and probably more.

In a move away from the pervious, there is very little cynicism in this album, overall it is a very positive album and one with a bright outlook. But there doesn’t need to be any negativity. Frank has continued to grow up and mature, he now has a much better outlook on life than ever before and his songwriting has made this clear.

This is certainly an album that Frank Turner, as well as all who featured and help make it, should be proud of.

FHTC is out everywhere on the 11th February 2022.

Words by Ted Stargatt

Pictures courtesy of Frank Turner/Xtra Mile/Ted Stargatt

Live Review: Palace at 02 Academy Bristol with Billie Marten. 5th February 2022

On a cold, slightly damp Saturday evening in the heart of Bristol, who would have known what a special night we were in for. With the release of their new album Shoals last month, these boys brought their tour to the 02 Academy in Bristol for a night of good music, with support from Billie Marten.

Only one support for this show, coming from singer-songwriter Billie Marten. Billie, with the backing of her band, played us a few songs from their discography. Although the songs started very soft and quiet, come the end of the set they picked up, and more people became interested in what was going on on stage.

A really good choice for the opening band, with music that perfectly set the mood and was really enjoyable.

And then it was on to the main act of the night.

Although Palace aren’t one for big entrances and fan fares, the roar that greeted them as they came on stage showed they had some dedicated and appreciated fans at this show.

Although the first couple of songs took a while to warm up the crowd, by the 4th song they had them in the palm of their hand, with people across the venue singing and dancing along, everyone there having a good time. I could feel the balcony start to shake underneath me from the movement!

Not one for lots of crowd interaction, these guys just got on and played their music, playing a massive 16 songs throughout the night. It was clear that the music meant a lot more than just words and sounds to so many people at the show. From my position on the balcony, I could see friends dancing hand in hand, singalongs and even some happy tears. For many people this was certainly that gig.

In keeping with their restrained, laid back nature of the night, there was no walk-off-walk-on (and those who know me will know how happy that makes me), they just kept playing for us. And the crowd kept loving it.

Again, there was no big, over the top finish from the band, just a calm end to a set of good music. That isn’t to say the audience wasn’t going insane, and there was smiles and happy faces from everyone as they left the venue after what was a truly magical night.

Words and photos by Ted Stargatt (all photos are copyrighted to Ted Stargatt/TrueStyleMusic)

To see more photos, head over to our Instagram

We chatted to BLUE VIOLET about their new single POSTER GIRL

Released just over a week ago, we thought it would be a good idea to chat to Sarah and Sam about the music music and a host of other stuff.

Can you tell us a bit about Blue Violet? Where are you from and how did you start as a band?

Sam: Sarah is Scottish / French and I’m from Bristol, we started playing music with aech other a few years ago. Blue Violet came to life in 2021 when we decided to start a new project together.

What about the name, where did that come from? 

Sarah: Those two colours portray the emotion of our music. Both melancholic and vibrant / uplifting.

If you had to sum each other up in one word, what would you say?

Va-Va-Voom

You recently released your new single Poster Girl, what does this song mean to you, as a band?

Sarah: It’s a song about fighting back. We liked the idea of having this strong female character in the narrative and in a way I kind of step into her shoes when we play it live. I like getting into that headspace when I’m performing.

Is this a hint at more new music on the way?

It’s no secret that we’ve been sitting on an album and we’re pleased to say the wait is almost over, we can’t reveal the release date just yet but we will be very soon!

Who produced this? Have you worked with them before? How was it working with them?

Rob Ellis, It was our first time working with him and we really enjoyed the process. We recorded it at Middle Farm Studios in Devon over the course of a month. We had a great team and it felt like a very natural meeting of minds. 

Did you find that lockdown had an effect on your songwriting and music? 

We wrote loads in the first few months and then did lots of demos. We were lucky enough to be living up in Scotland at the time in the countryside, and so had a lot of nature and quiet around us which is ideal for writing.

Looking back, is there anything you would have done differently?

Never! “No ragrets”

We hear that you are playing a couple of live shows soon. What can we expect from these?

We like to mix it up and do acoustic, intimate gigs as well as full band gigs. We have a bit of both coming up and more announcements on dates very soon.

What advice would you give to those looking to make their own music?

Even though things have been hard recently it’s worth sticking it out, music is important and hard times make for good art.

Where can we find out more about you?

Get in touch on our instagram or head over to blueviolet.uk

Anything else you would like to tell us, or even ask us a question?

What’s your favourite album of 2021?

Well for us it has to be The Lottery Winners with Something To Leave The House For.

We chatted to LOSTBOY about their new single WEIGHT, out today

Released today across all streaming platforms, we thought it would be a good opportunity to chat to Lostboy about the new song and all things music.

Can you tell us a bit about yourself? Where are you from and how did Lostboy start? 

I grew up in a tiny place in nowhere land called Wotton-under-Edge. It’s quiet there, school was about as you’d expect and outside of that there wasn’t much going on for the likes of kids like me. Music however, opened up doors to an escapism I had long craved – it all took off from there really. I met Robbo (Henry Robinson – Bass) and Eth (Ethan Reeves – Drums) at secondary, started pumping out shit covers interspersed with my first dodgy writing efforts, then relocated to Sheffield where Bezza (Lead Guitar) jumped on board and we started to find the sound. 

If you had to use three words to sum up Lostboy, what would you say?

Eager, determined and loud

You’ve released today your new single Weight. What does the song mean to you?

For me it came about from my thinking about the metaphorical ‘weight’ we all carry around in some aspect. I think post lockdown and reflective I was able to see how things had affected me in a more objective way. The song kind of cries out for that weight to be left behind, for us all to start anew in this new year. To be honest I never know what they mean until after they are written, it takes some processing myself. More often than not my songs know me better than I do.

Were you expecting to find inspiration there?

 I wasn’t really looking for inspiration as such; like with all my writing the best ones tend to come about when I’m feeling either troubled or elated – i do have lockdown and current societal pressures to thank for sure.

What is one thing you have learnt from making music, maybe something you weren’t expecting?

 Probably that I don’t find myself alone in the way my brain works (or doesn’t). Everyone has experienced their own ‘weight’ over the past year and that’s unique only to them, but I was surprised to find the way that would affect those around me not to distant to my own experience.

I hear you are about to go on tour soon. What can we expect from these live shows?

 We cannot wait for these shows. We’ll be touching places we’ve never been before and stretching our reach further afield – I can’t wait to see what energies the crowds bring.

How are you preparing for the tour?

We’ll have studio space booked for a good week or so to hone the set but to be honest it never takes the lads and I long to pull it back – although there are new tunes that may need some extra ironing.

What advice would you give those looking to make their own music?

 Write about things you love, things you hate and things that make YOU feel. Don’t try and write about things you don’t understand to jump trends, the people who love your music will smell bullshit a mile off. Make it all about having fun and you’re winning.

Where can we find out more about you?

We have a website which is thatbandlostboy.com – everything you need is there

Anything else you would like to tell us, or even ask us any questions?

Nothing other than thanks for having me and for all you do with your platform to support artists this is class. I hope you enjoy the music and I hope you’re keeping safe. See you round.

I’d like to thank Max for taking the time to answer our questions and wish him and the band the best of luck with the new single and the upcoming tour. Hopefully we’ll catch up again soon!

We caught up with Bristol based SUPERLOVE about their new single MAYBE I COULD TELL YOU

With their new single Maybe I Could Tell You out now on all streaming services, we couldn’t miss out on the opportunity to chat to Jacob, from the band Superlove, about the new single and all things music

Tickets to Superlove’s headline show at The Black Heart, London are available here.

Stream Maybe I Could Tell You here.

NEW SINGLE from Frank Turner: A Wave Across A Bay

Today, Frank Turner has shared his latest single – A Wave Across A Bay, taken from the new album FTHC, out 11th February.

The song, dedicated to Scott Hutchinson from Frightened Rabbit, is one lots of us can relate to. A song of loss and sadness, but also one of hope, and the future.

The song got it’s first airplay on Steve Lemacq’s BBC radio 6 music show earlier today, and it’s now available to stream everywhere.

FTHC tracklisting

1.“Non Serviam”
2.“The Gathering”
3.“Haven’t Been Doing So Well”
4.“Untainted Love”
5.“Fatherless”
6.“My Bad”
7.“Miranda”
8.“A Wave Across a Bay”
9.“The Resurrectionists”
10.“Punches”
11.“Perfect Score”
12.“The Work”
13.“Little Life”
14.“Farewell to My City”

Deluxe version

No.Title
15.“The Zeitbeast”
16.“The House Where I Was Raised”
17.“Haven’t Been Doing So Well” (acoustic)
18.“A Wave Across a Bay” (acoustic)
19.“Punches” (acoustic)
20.“The Work” (acoustic)

Unfortunately Frank’s UK tour dates have been cancelled, but the Europe dates, Lost Evenings V and a few other shows are still planned to go ahead. Dates and tickets can be found here.

We chatted to Frank about the new album and a host of other stuff at ‘The Gathering’ show in Frome back in August, check it out here.

We chatted to The Heavy North about their new single SATISFY YOU

Released at the beginning of 2022, Satisfy You made sure this year got off to a band. We chatted to the band about the new single and all other things music

Can you tell us a bit about yourself? Where are you all from and how did you meet?

We’re The Heavy North, a five piece garage-blues rock band from Liverpool and we’ve just released our latest single ‘Satisfy You’ on New Year’s Day 2022, taken from our upcoming debut album Electric Soul Machine.

The band is made up of Kenny Stuart (singer/songwriter & guitarist), Jose Ibanez (guitarist and producer), Andrew Horrocks (bass player), Ste Penn (keys player) and Mark Rice (drums). 

The Heavy North started out in Summer 2018 when Kenny and Jose invited Ste, Andy and Mark to visit Jose’s 3rd Planet Recording Studios in Liverpool. A few of us had played in bands together before and some of us were mates who knew each other could play.

Blue22 Photography

Where did the band name, The Heavy North, come from?

The band name was one of the few suggestions we came up with in the early days that none of us laughed at! As our sound developed and things started to come together, we felt ‘The Heavy North’ suited our style of music. 

We were originally thinking of themes around “loud”, “soul” and “northern”, and we
stumbled across The Heavy North and it sounded ok! There’s also a bit of a vague Liverpool connection too because the word ‘heavy’ can be used to describe all sorts of things – good and bad! Like “a heavy one” and “heavy salad”. 

If you had to sum each band member up in one word, what would you say?

Kenny: Soul
Jose: El Jefe
Andy: Cycling
Ste: Dog
Mark: Goth 

You recently released your new single Satisfy You. What does this song mean to you, as a band?

Satisfy You was a bit of a surprise release for us that we put out on New Year’s Day without any previews or teasers or anything like that. It also means a lot to us as it’s the fourth single taken from our debut album Electric Soul Machine.

To mark the year that our first album is released, we thought what better way to kick it off than by releasing an unannounced single at the stroke of midnight on New Year’s Eve! 

Who produced it? Have you worked with them before? What was it like working with
them?

We’re really fortunate that not only is Jose the band’s guitarist and songwriter, he’s also our producer and runs 3rd Planet Recording Studio in Liverpool. Jose has recorded everything for the band and plays a massive part in creating ‘The Heavy North’ sound.

Are there plans to play any live shows soon? 

We’ve just announced our first live show of 2022 will be a free gig at the legendary Cavern Club on Wednesday 26th January in conjunction with BBC Introducing in Merseyside. This will be a great opportunity to play a handful of tracks from the upcoming album as well as our new single Satisfy You. 

We hope to be playing a handful of UK shows at the end of February, followed by a run of
our own headline gigs in April to support the release of the Electric Soul Machine LP.

Blue22 Photography

2020 and 2021 were difficult years for the music industry. What did you learn from
lockdown?

We were quite lucky as a band to remain active during the pandemic, and when it all kicked off we were just preparing to release our first EP back in 2020 and we’d just finished filming some music videos and playing some live shows.

We also took the opportunity to write and record new tracks between lockdowns well as
getting involved with some of the live streaming events and online gigs – including a live-
streamed set from the M&S Bank Arena during the pandemic for the Liverpool Digital Music Festival in August 2020.

What advice would you give to those looking to make their own music?

All we can say is stick to your guns and be respectful of your fans and followers as well as other artists. Whether someone has 10 followers or 10,000 followers, if they’re willing to support you and your music make a point of thanking them and keeping in touch. As a band we’re really thankful for the support from our fans and followers, especially over the past two years during the pandemic!

Where can we find out more about you?

All of our releases, videos, merchandise, gigs and more can be found at theheavynorth.com, and we’re also across most of the socials @theheavynorth 

Anything else you would like to tell us, or even ask us?

We’d just like to thank TrueStyleMusic for giving us the opportunity to talk about our new
single and upcoming album. We hope 2022 will be a big year for us with the release of Electric Soul Machine and look forward to catching up soon.