Thursday 30 November 2017

WATCH: Flyte - 'Faithless'

It's been a few months since the Flyte chaps released their debut record The Loved Ones into the world and blessed us all with some incredibly beautiful tunes. The album opens with the mesmerising Faithless, which I shared back in August via a stunning session for Sofar Sounds and the track has just been given a "big, beautiful music video to go with it", shot in the Spanish desert, directed by Femke Huurdman and produced by Canada. If you're already a fan, enjoy, and if not - check it out and be careful not to fall too deeply in love with the band too quickly... but in case you do, here's a link to listen to the full record! 

Flyte play at the Communion Music Christmas club night at Notting Hill Arts Club on Sunday 3rd December alongside Isaac Gracie, Harry from Peace, Lucy Rose, Adam French and a special guest (ooh - the mystery!) There will be mince pies and fake snow so it isn't to be missed... tickets are sold out online at the moment but it's always worth checking back here for more!

Monday 27 November 2017

WATCH: Tempesst - 'Feel Better'

Need some cheery summery vibes to warm up those winter blues? Look no further than Tempesst. Taken from their recent (and brilliant) Adult Wonderland EP they've just released a really snazzy video for Feel Better with some pretty strong 60s vibes, a beautiful accompaniment to the tune which I'm also adoring. They released their first tunes just over a year ago (check those out on Soundcloud) and have succeeded in releasing nothing that I'm not totally enjoying so far and this EP certainly hits the mark. Get listening below and get yourselves along to the EP tour - they'll be taking in shows in London, Southampton and Manchester across the first week of December (tickets/dates here.)

Follow Tempesst online - Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.

Sunday 19 November 2017

LISTEN: Ady Suleiman - 'I Remember'

Added to my playlist (alongside a fab new Low Island song) on Friday, I'm totally loving this new tune from Nottingham singer-songwriter Ady Suleiman, following up singles Say So and Not Giving Up. If you've not listened to Ady before, he's a super talented and soulful artist with "an innate need to turn life experiences into narrative", a real talent performing live and a long list of beautiful tunes. He's just finished up a short run of sold out gigs premiering new material - I'd say that some news on an album is long overdue and can't wait for more!

Follow Ady Suleiman online - Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

Monday 13 November 2017

WATCH: BE GOOD - 'Nightbus'

Following up their debut tune Not Waking Up and the recent (and totally smooth) It's Cool but It Ain't You, BE GOOD are back with Nightbus and Hazelnut, two new tunes which they're releasing through the Communion Singles Club. As an Oxford band I've got a soft spot for them which has only increased with the new video for Nightbus, featuring some familiar parts of the city which I love and miss terribly - most notably The Library music venue on Cowley Road, where I booked my first gig with Little Mammoths almost two years ago! The video premiered recently on The Independent, with the band telling them in a Q&A that the rest of the year involves recording for an EP release early next year - I'm very pleased to hear that! 

You can catch the band in London at the end of the month (30th) supporting Cousin Kula at Servant Jazz Quarters, or if you're in Oxford, they're headlining at The Cellar for Future Perfect alongside Magique on December 14th.  

Follow BE GOOD online - Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.

Sunday 12 November 2017

LIVE: Low Island & Friends at Corsica Studios (8/11/17)

"We don't usually do an encore, but this is a special occasion." The truest words ever spoken, which were met with raucous applause at the first of Low Island's back to back sold out shows at Corsica Studios on Wednesday. It's been just over a year since the band put out their first track Anywhere, which was at the time celebrated with a sold out show at Sebright Arms. Fast forward to this April and a sold out night at Electrowerkz, and you start to see the impressive trajectory the band have taken in such a short space of time. With a couple of EPs released along the way and sets at various festivals this Summer (including The Great Escape where I finally caught them live), this all built up to the Low Island and Friends tour.

Doing just what it says on the tin the tour has been an opportunity for the band to collaborate with various creatives in the towns that they've been visiting - and for the lucky London crowd on Wednesday evening, this meant not only two support bands (Ilk and Our Mother) but two unique performance pieces. The band wrote that "working with people from across the artistic spectrum for this tour has been an incredibly fun and eye-opening experience for us. For the Corsica Studios shows next week, we've collaborated with the designer Shawn Soh, movement director Sara Green and dancers Hae Yon Lim, Aishwarya Raut, Chloe Brazinskas and Sara Kaspersen on a piece that explores the difficulties of growing up in the digital age. There's also going to be a fantastic performance art piece called 'Outburst', devised by Gary Stevens." The different performances, some of which took place within the crowd, kept us on our toes and prepared us for what was to come!

Moments after taking to the stage and beginning their first track, the volume of the bass caused a power cut. As technical difficulties go, it's pretty rock and roll. After a lot of switching on and off again all was sorted, and the band started the first song from the beginning as if nothing had happened - I'm not sure anyone would have any complaints about hearing the first half of the song again! They quickly got into the swing of things, delivering a set full of incredible tunes that make even the worst dancers among us want to bust out some moves. They treated us to tunes from the In This Room EP including the brilliant tracks That Kind Of Love, Holding It Down, as well as recent single The Lines, and they even let us in on some entirely new tunes which got just as fantastic a reception from the audience. Throughout the set it was clear just how happy  the band were to be playing for us, and how grateful and surprised they were that we were all there, which always makes for a lovely atmosphere at a show! As well as being pretty wonderful musically, they're four lovely chaps who deserve all the superb opportunities which will continue to be created for them - since the show, they've been announced as BBC Introducing in Oxford's 'Act of the Year 2017' - an amazing achievement!

Low Island have just announced an Oxford headline show at The Cellar for local promoters Future Perfect on 27th Jan - find all the info and ticket links here!

Thursday 9 November 2017

LISTEN: Fil Bo Riva - 'Head Sonata (Love Control)'

With various other commitments outside of the blog, I (like most music bloggers) have far too little time to listen to all of the tracks that I'm sent to review, but very often find complete gems in my inbox. Rewind to last August and I had one of those moments, discovering the incredibly talented Fil Bo Riva, a half-Italian, half-Irish, Berlin-based musician whose debut single Like Eye Did I instantly fell in love with. Fast forward to May this year and The Great Escape Festival, where I braved the pouring down rain and ventured to a hotel on the Brighton seafront to catch him playing an incredible set to an adoring crowd. I've listened to his If You're Alright, It's Alright EP on a fairly regular basis since the festival and I'm particularly in love with the tune Franzis!

It's been over a year since the EP was released and I was excited (and a little nervous) to find a new tune from Fil and the gang in my inbox. Growing from a solo project into a duo and now a four-piece band, they have had a very busy year, performing at gigs and festivals across Europe, whilst finding time for frontman Fil to head back to the studio consistently to work on their debut album with producer Robert Stephenson. Taking my first listen of the single, seconds into the track my worries were banished - it's just as much of a tune as the EP and an impressive, upbeat and playful taste of what's to come, as the first single from the upcoming album. Fil describes beautifully that “if the EP was a photograph of an idea, what we are trying to create with the album is an actual movie. I’m not trying to sound romantic but it’s like accumulating different pictures and feelings… and we all worship the album format, that’s why we want to take the time to shape it properly.”

Talking about the birth of this new single, he says that “the title “Head Sonata“ was just meant to be a name placeholder at the start. The song was built around the chorus guitar riff and the first time I heard Felix [A. Remm] play it, I felt my head spinning and it immediately gave me a trippy and repetitive feeling. A few minutes later I had the title written down. I simply liked the sound of it. These two words somehow translated my imagination of the songs soundscape… And since the track didn’t have any lyrics nor a melody for the first few months, the word ‘sonata’, literally meaning a piece played, actually suited the song very good. Finally, a breeze of inspiration came to my mind, I wrote down the lyrics and the song was finished. A “Head Sonata” was born.”

Fil Bo Riva will support Milky Chance across their European and UK tour before heading back to Berlin to finish work on the album (hoorah!) Then they're heading back on the road for a headline tour of Europe in 2018, where they will be premiering new material from the debut album, taking in a show at London's Sebright Arms on 17th April.

Follow Fil Bo Riva online - Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.

Wednesday 8 November 2017

VIDEO PREMIERE: Hazey Jane - 'Mother's Lie'

"Hackney based, harmony driven and easily confused." That's the pretty concise description of Hazey Jane that you'll find if you head to their Facebook page, surely enough to entice you in? They're a folk-indie quartet from London and they've just followed up their Us On A Wire EP with the brilliant new single Mother's Lie (their debut single, in fact, released through Animal Farm.) I've seen them performing live a few times this year at various Tigmus shows, including a headline gig in Oxford and this has been my favourite track from their live set each time so I'm chuffed that they've released it and I'm proud to be premiering the video for the track, directed by Liam Egan.

You can catch Hazey Jane live in London at legendary venue The George Tavern for Tigmus on 9th December alongside Richard Morris and Lewis McKale - tickets here, and perhaps they'll throw in a Christmas tune?!

Follow Hazey Jane online - Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.

Tuesday 7 November 2017

WATCH: The Staves & yMusic - Trouble On My Mind

It's never a bad thing when The Staves treat us to new music, and they're not disappointing with the incredibly soothing Trouble On My Mind. They recorded the track with New York based chamber ensemble yMusic, whose strings delicately mirror the beautiful vocals of the trio. Consider my interest well and truly peaked as the collaboration stretches to an entire record, entitled The Way Is Read, which is released digitally on November 24th and as a limited edition vinyl on December 1st. Take a listen to the new tune below and get pre-ordering!

Follow The Staves online - Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.

Thursday 2 November 2017

LISTEN: Crooked Weather - 'Rabbit Holes'

Crooked Weather are an East-Yorkshire based alternative folk four-piece, playing "earthy, unruly and original folk songs" hinged around the beautiful harmonies of Holly Blackshaw and Will Bladen. After being away touring the USA, Ireland, New Zealand and France, the band are back with new single Rabbit Holes, their first new material in two years. What starts as a quiet and harmonic song builds towards a cracking guitar solo, and it's sure to be a favourite for fans of the likes of First Aid KitThe Staves and Laura Marling.

Follow Crooked Weather online - Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.