laurence

laurenceDecember 17, 2012
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4min93

Today we get to hear a few words from the man himself, Peter Bruntnell, after releasing London Clay on the Independent Charts, and coming in at number 3 on the week of December 7th.

 

Hi Peter, thanks for talking to us today. So when did your life in music begin? Was there any other interests growing up, or were you always going to be a musician?

A. It was either be an astronaut or a musician, I thought the musician route would be more financially rewarding,

 

Where does your inspiration come from, what motivates you to write the lyrics you do?

A. Things I read about or what just comes out of mumbling melodies and a desire not to sound like all that cliched crap one hears every single day on commercial radio.

 

What kind of shows have you been playing lately? Have you got a favourite venue, or place to play?

I like the Borderline in London. I also like playing in the U.S. especially in the dirty south.

 

You’ve just released your single ‘London Clay’ on the Independent Charts, care to tell us more about that song? Does London have a special place in your heart?

The lyrics were written by myself and my co-writer Bill Ritchie who lives in Vancouver B.C,  they mean many things to me, I wanted this song to sound like a sixties pop song, which, in the verse , I think it does, the chorous sounds maybe a little more modern, not sure really. Yes London has a special place in my heart, I live in Devon now but every time I’m in London I get excited and drink too much.

 

What have been the main challenges getting to where you are now? What have you done to overcome these challenges as an artist?

My main challenge is stopping my wife from throwing me out for being poor musician. I do as much laundry and D.I.Y. as I can to overcome this as flowers don’t work anymore.

 

Who are your main influences? If you could play a show with any artist in the world, alive or dead, who would you play with?

Neil Young.  If I could play with anyone it would be with the one and only John Lennon.

 

What should we expect from you in the future? Is it world domination, or are you just going to keep doing what you love?

I have applied several times this year to NASA but so far I have not heard back so it’s more of the same I’m afraid.  I think we might be touring in the U.K and the U.S. a bit next year. I would like to start another record next year too, not sure what kind yet, I’ll have to wait and see how the songs come out.


laurenceDecember 12, 2012
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7min62

Rhys Coleman gives us an in depth interview and speaks about his music, life as a musician and his new Single ‘Waterfall’ out now on the Independent Charts!

 

Hi Rhys, thanks for talking to us today. So when did your musical journey begin, how long have you been writing for?

My pleasure! I was quite little when I started playing music, about 8 if memory serves. My first real instrument was the piano – I moved on to drums and singing when I was older, and ended up playing in a fair few bands for/with others, but didn’t start writing solo material properly until about 2 years ago. It took me that long to find a sound I was happy with.

What are your songs about? What parts of life do you draw inspiration from?

A lot of artists draw from life experience when writing their material, but when I started writing solo stuff I was in the very fortunate position of having a very nice life! It sounds weird to mention that, but a lot of the best songs come from bad situations, and I’d had the good fortune of being in very few! So originally I wrote about hypothetical scenarios and fictional worlds, but in that time I’ve been around a bit more and have a bit more experience to draw upon.

Who are your favourite artists? Have you got an iPod or anything like that? Who would be on the ‘most played’ category?

I get mocked a lot for this, but I’m a big My Chemical Romance fan. I’m really excited about the next few months, because they’re releasing some more material, and Biffy Clyro are releasing a double album. The most played album on my iPod at the moment is bound to be In Between Dreams by Jack Johnson – I remember spending this awesome summer listening to that album so it’s got so much value. No Other Way’s a particular favourite track.

You’re just released a track called ‘Waterfall’ on the Independent Charts, how did that song come about, are there any hidden messages?

Waterfall started out as completely hypothetical – in my mind it was about this couple that wake up one day and just don’t feel the same way about each other. The track took ages to write, I was working on it for about 2 years, and about halfway through the writing process – a year ago – I was having a really bad time of it, so it started to take on more relevance to me personally. So if anything writing the song became a stress release. A few people have guessed what the waterfall is a metaphor for, and I really love hearing their ideas so I’m keeping my meaning for it close to my chest.
What kind of shows have you been playing lately? Have you got a favourite venue, or place to play?

There’s a little venue called Ye Olde Farmhouse at the top of Bath where my friends and I like to play music and have a laugh – it’s become a really great family vibe. I was asked to play a gig there which was a lot of fun, and it’s become one of my favorite venues. I played in Moles with some friends, a nice little acoustic set, which was fun. Out of town, The Fleece in Bristol put on some great nights, the Vic in Swindon was awesome too.

What have been the main challenges getting to where you are now? What have you done to overcome these challenges as an artist?

Like I say, I’ve been really lucky with the life I have thus far, so there were only really two main obstacles to my music; the first was apathy. Until I really cracked on with writing, I had this attitude of sitting back and waiting for inspiration and success to fall in my lap. Sometimes people are very lucky and it does, but I did my research and discovered what a difficult job being a musician is. That was a wake up call and got me off my arse. The second was nerves – I used to be very nervous around people, whether they realised it or not, and had to overcome that to meet cool new people and make good music with them.

What does the future have in hold for your music? Where would you like to be in five years time?

The idea of being really famous has never really appealed to me. My ideal life would be being successful enough to make the music I want to make and be able to pay for a roof over my head and some food to eat. I don’t mind slumming it too much, in fact couch surfing can be quite fun! I’d absolutely love to play Later With Jools Holland at some point, I think I’d feel like I was doing well if I played there.


laurenceDecember 8, 2012
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6min61

We get to speak with Steve Keenlyside, musical mind behind ‘The Boondock Hippy’ and where his soulful acoustic songs come from…

 

Hi Steve, thanks for talking to us today. So where did the Boondock Hippy come from? Are you really a hippy or is it just a stage name?

I’ll begin with the 2nd part of the name if I may. I think i’ve always been a bit of a hippie at heart. It all stems from the kind of music my father introduced me too as a kid. He was into the folk heroes of the 60’s/70’s like Dylan and Hendrix and bands like Zeppelin, Creedence and Canned Heat. Artists who really had something to say and whom preached strong messages of equality and peace.  I used the term hippy with a “y” simply because it seemed more iconic.

The 1st part of my name comes from one of my favourite films; called “The Boondock Saints”, which; if you haven’t seen it, actually makes my stage name a slight contradiction in terms, as the saints are vigilantes. However, they fight for a good cause……I’m all about good causes me, and doing what’s right!!!

 

What motivates you to write music? Has it always been a big part of your life?

Music has always been a huge part of my life. I started playing the guitar when I was around 12 years old and have never looked back. If I am not playing music then I am listening to it and vice versa. I also wanted to be able to record songs in their entirety, so I I taught myself to play the piano, the bass and the drums.I’m certainly no John Legend, Flea or Reni respetively…but Its important to me to be able to view songs from each musical perspective, so that’s why I learned……

 

Who are your main influences? If you could play a show with any artist in the world, alive or dead, who would you play with?

The one contemporary artist that I fully admire right now is Cosmo Jarvis. The way he structures songs and the way he puts lyrics together is nothing short of genius, so i would definitely say him as a current influence.

If we are talking any artist, alive or dead to play with, It would have to be The Rolling Stones….no question

You’re releasing a track called Maverick on the Independent Charts, this is your second release now I believe, could you tell us a little more about the song?

Level Films released a flick this year called The Endless Winter-A Very British Surf Movie, which absolutely blew me away. I was so inspired by the film that I wrote a couple of songs dedicated to it. …..”Maverick” is one of these songs. I’m a surfer myself so that is why it really struck a chord with me. If
you haven’t seen the film then please check it out!!!.

What kind of shows have you been playing lately? Have you got a favourite venue, or place to play?

The band is based in London. Recently, we have just been playing pub shows and some smaller venues in the city just to keep the live performences “tuned”. We took a bit of time out from live shows this year in order to write new material. 2x albums have been produced since that point. “Life in the Slow Lane” and “Dylan’s Gold”, both of which has been received really well.

My Favourite venue that we’ve done would have to be The Clapham Grand.

What have been the main challenges getting to where you are now? What have you done to overcome these challenges as an artist?

The main challenge is one that every unsigned band faces really. It’s so difficult to take it to the next level because the competition is so fierce. I have found that Social Networking has really opened up new avenues for the band that just weren’t available before. I am now getting my music out to people on a much larger scale, and things are really beginning to take off. Supporting my local music scene has also been a big thing. The IIC Showcases being a great example of this

What does the future have in hold for the Boondock Hippy? Are you interested in taking on America, or the rest of the world? 

Haha, Of course, but I need to focus on our own fair shores first!


laurenceDecember 3, 2012
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15min96
A SUCCESSFUL 10TH ANNUAL ANNIVERSARY CELEBRTED BY THE URBAN MUSIC AWARDS
Chart toppers Chris Brown, Sway, Lemar, Rihanna , Rudimental, Flux Pavillion, DJ Fresh, Clement Marfo & The Frontline win big at the 10th annual Urban Music Awards this weekend (1/12/12).
It was a successful night at the 10th annual Urban Music Awards which took place this weekend in London (1/12/12). Past UMA winner, Sway who has had a successful year in and out of the charts won the award for Best HipHop Act 2012 .
Collecting his award, Sway commented “The UMAs is one of the original and credible awards ceremonies in Europe for HipHop and R&B music. I don’t think most artists understand that without the UMAs , UK urban music would never have been taken seriously or become the commercial success it is today. Most new artists today currently topping the charts might be unaware of the significance the Urban Music Awards made in promoting and investing in UK urban music acts at a time were 10 years ago no, and I mean no, other awards ceremony cared about British urban based acts”.
This year over 1.5 million votes were received online and the social media has seen an increase over 10,000 new followers supporting a movement that started over 10 years ago. Loaded Magazine and Loaded TV (Sky Channel 200) were announced as the official media and broadcast partner this year and were on hand to film the awards ceremony in it’s entirety.
The night’s catering was provided by Grain of Salt who tantalized everyones tastebuds preparing guests for drink sponsors Bassline Bars , MyCocktail and Jaigermiester who made sure everyone was in a cheery, merry mood with their brand of cocktails and shots put together exclusively to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the Urban Music Awards.
The Best DJ category, was picked up by Kiss DJ, Shortee Blitz who commented “This is a proud moment” whilst in the heavily contested Best Radio show category, Kiss, 1xtra, and Choice presenters battled it out for this category which was in the end won by BBC 1Xtra’s Charlie Sloth who in his acceptance speech, thanked the UMA and all his listeners for the support.
Newcomers, Rudimental won Best Music Video for their hit single ‘Feel the Love’ featuring John Newman, and Best Producer was a tie between Naughty Boy and Flux Pavillion with Flux Pavillion just about making it ahead of Naughty Boy with a slight lead in votes towards the closing deadline. Flux Pavillion, currently on tour, sent a video acceptance speech to show it’s support. London station, Choice bagged the award for Best Radio Station sponsored by Wozityou.
 
2012, was ultimately set aside as the year for the Urban Music Awards to celebrate a decade of history making as the first ever awards show to break the UK urban genre into the mainstream and expand across the pond launching in the USA, France, Jamaica and now Africa. The night moved into some fantastic performances from Afrobeats star and new UMA winner of the Best AfroBeats/African category, Fuse ODG, who got the crowd going and even taught members of the audience how to do the Azonto Dance. Award winning and Best Gospel Act nominee Rachel Kerr, also graced the stage with her full band giving an electrifying performance to get the crowd going.
The awards show was hosted by UMA founder, Jordan Kensington, who introduced a plethora of comedians to add the laughter to what was a great an exciting event. Comedy legend, Bobby Davro, dazzled the crowd with his one liners and comic routine, Paul Chowdry, then stepped up for a 5 minute routine that got the all audience in pieces. Newcomer Jimmy James Jones warmed up for what was the best comedian of the night, Abandoman who got the audience literally on their feet with laughter as his brand of comedy freestyle rap from Ireland made people understand the diversity of what the Urban Music Awards is all about. Celebrity presenters including Denise Welch (Loose Women), Preeya Khalidas, Star Boy Nathan, Poojah Shah , Levi Roots, Lembit Opik, Francis Bouille (Made in Chelsea), Danny John Jules (Red Dwarf), Jimmy Akingbola (Holby City) and more graced the stage to add some fun into the mix of activity.
Winner of the Best DJ in 2011, DJ Nikki , had the honour of bringing the soundtrack to the whole awards ceremomny. Nikki literally showed the audience why she is one of the best Dj’s in the UK by keeping the music and rythms to the UMA consistently in flow! Denise Welch commented “I am here with my son, we are having a great time and think this is an absolutely fantastic event. What is great about this, is that the UMA obviously understand that this music is now listened by people across the country in all different sectors of life young and old and to incooperate all this into one event is totally mind blowing”.
As the night drew to an end, host Jordan Kensington took the audience back to the old skool by introducing a plethora of past UMA legends who have paved the way for what it is today. From Elisabeth Troy who performed all her MJ Cole hits and DJ Luck & MC Neat who did a medly of 7 chart topping numbers from the 90’s era before presenting the prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award to legendary DJ , Norman Jay M.B.E .
Norman Jay M.B.E who attended the event with his Dad gave the most touching acceptance speech . He commented ” I have waited 10 years for this, and I am extremely proud of my MBE and now my UMA. The UMA means so much to me, because I understand the struggle, adversity and critiscms that this organisation has had to go through to reach were it is today. The Urban Music Awards is an inspiration for standing, sticking and never moving even when the weather is not in your favour. If there is anything that can be said is that when you believe you will achieve. I am part of that, from a single record that my Dad sitting here let me play to several years later having played to thousands and millions worldwide”.
The night, was closed by Reggae Reggae Sauce, entrepreneur/musician, Levi Roots who after bursting into an impormptu performance added “I have attended the UMA’s every single year now and this night is by far the best UMA’s ever. Congratulations to all the nominees and the winners of this year’s UMA’s”. The officially 10th anniversary Urban Music Awards album produced by Experiment and Stef Gizzi was announced as officially out now on ITUNES. The 10th annual Urban Music Awards will be broadcast this Friday, the 7th of December on Loaded TV (Sky channel 200) The Urban Music Awards 2012 was sponsored by Zuricom, WozitYou, Mycocktails, Grain of Salt, Easy Limos, Justpose!, Blueberry Nation, Loaded TV, International Independent Charts, Flower Factory, Disc Wizards and many more.Full list of the 10th annual Urban Music Awards winners list include:
Best Newcomer
Sneakbo
Best Single (sponsored by Blueberry Nation)
Azealia Banks ft. Lazy Jay ‘212’
Best Female Act (sponsored by Zuricom)
Lady Leshurr
Artist of the Year (sponsored by Invincible Radio)
Rita Ora
Best Male Artist
Maverick Sabre
Best R&B Act
Lemar
Best Hip Hop Act
Sway
Best Group
Clement Marfo & the Frontline
Best Radio Show
Charlie Sloth (1Xtra)
Best Collaboration (sponsored by Chelsea Monthly)
Devlin ft. Ed Sheeran ‘Watchtower’
Best Grime Act
Big Narstie
Best Producer
Flux Pavillion
Best International Artist
Chris Brown
Best DJ
Shortee Blitz
Best Album 2012
Rihanna ‘Talk that Talk’
Best African/Afro Beats Act
Fuse ODG
Best Gospel Act
London Community Gospel Choir
Best Reggae Act
Movado
Best Electronic/ Dance Act
DJ Fresh
Best Music Video
Rudimental ft. John Newman ‘Feel the Love’Best Radio Station sponsored by Wozityou
Choice
Lifetime Achievement Award
Norman Jay M.B.E
(Pictures by Javier Sauras)

laurenceNovember 25, 2012
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5min69

If you were in London last Wednesday you’d know it was grey and rainy, as you would expect it to be mid-week. So when I got a call from work inviting me to review the seven-course taster meal launching at The Cumberland’s new restaurant W1 by head chef Paul Welburn, you can imagine my face lighting up like we all wish the skies did that day.

The first thing that struck me visually about the restaurant were the chandeliers, where crystal beads hung round the light, which caused hints of blue green and red to refract through the gently lit room. This magically set the mood, which served only to entice my imagination for the flavours to come. The anticipation built, as did the empty champagne glasses on the bar, before finally Paul, the head chef, made an appearance and humbly introduced himself and launched W1. He also, rather touchingly, dedicated his menu to the two chefs from ‘The Fat Duck’ who died earlier this week, before moving on to welcome us and usher us to our seats and to the first course.

My colleague Jonny and I sat at a four table and were lucky enough to dine with Sophie and Rhone (South African, I hope I’ve spelled it right), who clearly shared our passion for good food.

The first course arrived, an English carrot mousse with salted walnuts, burnt orange and coriander. I’ve had dishes similar to this in the past, however none so light and delicate, I felt it was a fantastic way to break the palette; a subtle blend of sweet and savoury which achieved exactly what the chef had set out to do. As enthralled as I was by the course, there was an element of mystery to it, the blend of flavours was so composite it was difficult to separate and understand. Quite the bemuse bouche.

The courses followed on one after another, each more welcome than the last. One course which stood out was the foie gras with parfait, pineapple, duck ham and monbazillac, which usually I would have reservations about eating, just from bad experiences as a young child and my father trying to mature my tastes too soon. However in the hands of Paul Welburn the dish was divine and I might even consider eating it a second time.

To each course was it ‘s own wine, well chosen, effectively complimentary of the course it was sharing. A particular favourite of the night, and not just from myself was the Lagrein, alongside the Squab pigeon.

The highlight of the meal had to have been the monkfish, perfectly cooked and exuding flavour. Even the way my knife managed to delicately cut through the morsel had an incredibly appealing aesthetic, which only served to further drive my appetite. The Squab Pigeon with a confit leg, cep risotto and espresso jus was equally delightful. Though the monkfish was a tough act to follow, I felt it held up well.

Lastly the deserts were split into two taster courses, the first being a Chocolate cremeux, soil, peanut and salted caramel, and the second a pear, hazelnut, Brillat saverin, and anise syrup. If I had to find one fault throughout the entire night I would say that the wafer of caramel covering the chocolate, whilst a good idea and perfectly complimenting the rest of the textures and flavours, was annoying to have stuck to my teeth after everything, but maybe that’s just me and my irrational fear of fillings.

The contour of textures and flavours throughout the evening was well structured; every course flowed from the previous and led to the next with a precision that gratified whilst keeping you guessing as to exactly what was to come. Honestly I believe that the dining experience here has been perfected, as by the end of the meal every one of my expectations and desires had been skilfully satisfied leaving me content to enjoy the rest of the evening.

Paul and indeed all the staff at the W1 should be proud of a successful launch, and the delicious taster menu we enjoyed that night. I sincerely hope I get the time to visit again and the chance to compliment the chef myself. Highly recommended.


laurenceNovember 22, 2012
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2min67

If you were anywhere on the 9th of November you should have been at the Download Music Awards. A quintessentially British music night with an eclectic showcase of artists ranging from Urban Hip-hop, gentle acoustic songstresses, and the real ‘Movers and Shakers’ of the night the headline act ‘The Fores’.

The Fores stormed the stage after picking up the Best Newcomer award, previously awarded to the Saturdays in 2009, which had clearly rocketed the group to the forefront of the music scene at the time. The Fores have taken the title with pride and rightly so, their performance at the end of the night really had people rocking the dance-floor.

The Leicester Mod-rocker five-piece is fast becoming the band to watch as every performance lights up the floor. At serious events such as the Download Music Awards and the National Reality TV awards the band have given their all yet managed to retain that natural flow to their sets, as if they’ve spent more time on stage than off.

Their style suits that energised Brit-pop vibe that’s effortlessly in your face with punchiness and flair. In a way they are reminiscent of a young Rolling Stones, with elements of a British sounding Offspring, whilst still managing to forge their own identity, a somewhat epic yet down to earth quality that uniquely resembles each of the band members themselves.

The future will be bright for The Fores; everyone who has seen their shows knows it, and anyone who haven’t seen the shows should.

 

www.facebook.com/TheFores

www.reverbnation.com/TheFores


laurenceNovember 6, 2012
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10min70

The Download Music Awards show is fast approaching. Since the Awards began in 2009, many artists have launched their careers off of the recognition from the Awards and the opportunity for their fans to support them by voting. Some of the winners from the first awards included: Lilly Allen, The Saturdays, Calvin Harris, The Arctic Monkeys, The Noisettes.

Now it seems it’s time for a new generation of music to have their say. Some of the nominees this year include: The Fores, Wildflowers, The Correspondents, Ana Free, Carousel, and George Montague. We can’t wait to see who’s going to walk away with an award this year after the Awards show on the 9th.

Greg Ryan from acoustic act ‘Nothing North of Alaska’ had this to say:

“After seeing the standard of the other great bands involved in these awards, we consider it an incredible honour to be nominated alongside them. We are looking forward to playing at the ceremony as its a great venue, we are in great company and we know it’s going to be so much fun both on and off the stage!”

Jamie Burgess from headline act The Fores said:

“Myself and the guys are over the moon to be nominated at this years Download Music Awards; it is an incredible opportunity for a hard working band like us and we couldn’t be happier that people are enjoying our music as much as we enjoy writing and performing it. We’re ready to give the performance of our lives on Friday”

 

The Line up is looking fantastic and set to entertain all who attend, so we thought we’d dig up some info about each of the acts performing on the night for you all. Enjoy!

 

The Curious Incident

The Curious Incident is a mixed bag band of foreigners based in London. They started off experimenting with worldly sounds in early 2011 and racked up frenetic live shows in London at venues such as IndigO2, 100 Club, and Proud Camden as well as supporting diverse bands such as The Zombies and Die Antwoord. Further adventures consisted of them independently touring South Africa and Canada including showcases at Canadian Music Festival leading them to being asked back in 2013. The band has now narrowed the focus, taking the best of their experimentation and contemporary influences, packaging it with enough mainstream appeal whilst boiling over their energetic performances

 

Jess Clayton

Jess Clayton is a singer-songwriter who is passionate about writing songs to make an impact. Growing up in a musical family it was inevitable Jess would do something in music. But it was her work with the TRC (a charity that offers free play therapy and counselling for children who are facing trauma and crisis) in Bath that changed her songs from pretty to passionate. She released her single ‘Voice for the Voiceless’ to raise awareness of Human Trafficking and 100% of all profits from the single are donated to the TRC’s Treehouse Project which provides an aftercare service in the UK for survivors of Human Trafficking.

 

Carousel

Carousel are a c​hilled easy-listening​ three-piece teen a​coustic band from Mottingham, South-East​ London. The band w​as formed in 2008 and have perfected their craft writing and​ performing at sever​al venues in London​ and throughout 15 cities in the UK. CEO &​ Founder of Invincible Records & IEG, Jo​rdan Kensington comm​ented on the signing​ “2012 is already p​roving to be a very ​exciting year. I have​ complete belief in​ Carousel. The boys​ are talented musici​ans/songwriters with​ a humility, creativ​ity and genuine pass​ion for music which ​is refreshingly rar​e in today’s music i​ndustry. Carousel has ​what it takes to be​come the biggest ban​d in the UK without ​a doubt and it will ​most certainly happe​n. Carousel has the ​crossover potential​ to reach a worldwid​e audience in a very​ short time and the ​credibility to last ​in the music indust​ry for a very long t​ime”

 

Sober

Ever since early age Sober has had the talent to take the world by storm. From an early age he had the credentials and potential to make his own and actually prosper from his own music. Growing up listening to Michael Jackson and rappers such as 2pac, 50cent, Eminem, he was inspried and influenced to start writing his own music. Started off as an MC on garage sets and pirate radio stations his long path to stardom started. And as he got older and his music got more mature started writing actual songs and created his very own mixtapes off his own back, and performing at various spot’s and events. Years later Sober is now ready to take the music scene by storm as he looks for longevity in the scene, currently working on commercial singles and his EP there is alot to come from this artist so dont bet against him, stand with him.

 

Nothing North Of Alaska

Nothing North Of Alaska are an acoustic style duo from South Wales comprising of Greg Ryan on vocals and Tim Miles on guitar. Drawing influences from Tim’s love of the lyrical based themes of country music and Greg’s love of folk, the result is an eclectic mix of fast picked acoustic melody lines, raw, energy filled vocal performances and the occasional appearance of an absolutely rockin’ tenor ukulele solo. The duo plays regularly with the outstandingly talented violinist and vocalist Rosie Bell who contributes to many of their tracks and plays at many of their shows. Tim and Greg try to show equal attention to vocals, lyrics and instrumentation rather than just base it all around the singer and often like to do instrumental features in our songs.

 

Nikki Murray

Nikki was awarded ‘Acoustic Guitar Player of the Year’ by Guitarist magazine for his song ‘You Stole My Music’ from the four-track demo of the same name. Guitarist magazine hailed his outstanding musicianship and song-writing abilities, going on to comment: ‘Ability alone is not enough to get a crowd going and even the most brilliant guitar player has to have something memorable on stage as well as coming out of your stereo, Nikki Murray certainly does.’
The following year, his song ‘I Wonder Why’ was chosen by Guy Chambers and Beverley Knight to be included in the Top 10 of BBC Radio 2’s ‘Sold On Song’ initiative and his track, ‘The One Thing I Like About You’ was recognised in MTV Networks VH1 ‘Unsigned Song Of The Year’ poll. VH1 said, “The song is wonderful and has true hit potential.” Nikki’s distinctive vocal style has been described as ‘Neil Young meets with Tom Petty for a drink with Jimi Hendrix.’

 

George Montague

George Montague is a 21 year old singer, songwriter, composer and musician based in The Cotswolds. George began his life in music as a double bass player at the age of 9. At the age of 11 he remembers sitting down at the piano and figuring it out, in his words, “Something just clicked, a hunger I never knew existed awoke and the fire of my Songwriting began to burn.” George was inspired by musicians such as Jamie Cullum, Chris Martin and Freddie Mercury; he decided he wanted to follow in their footsteps. George has been gigging around the southwest of England as a singer-songwriter since 2010.

 

The Fores

The Fores came into the music scene in 2006 and were born out of four students from the same music course at a local college. Year after year they have evolved and have taken their music more and more seriously. The band take their influences from the likes of Oasis, The Who, The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, and many modern artists. The Fores fresh, rock n roll style shines through within a crescendo of guitar riffs and chords supplementing their thought-provoking lyrics. With an attitude and performance likened to Guns N’ Roses, they perform with a passion and energy which is difficult to ignore.


laurenceOctober 31, 2012
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8min74

Today we have the privelidge of speaking with a band from New Zealand. ‘The New Brides’ are releasing their first single through the Independent Charts entitled ‘Record’ we at Chelsea Monthly can’t wait to hear it! Let’s get in deep with the band.

 

Hi New Brides! Thanks for speaking to us today. So how and where did you guys meet? Was it music at first sight?
Hey Laurence, hows it? Thanks for getting in touch. Yeh, the new brides, basically we’ve all converged on the same city and we’re playing all over it. Theres Billy, a young bass player with a car. Billy met Qedric, a seasoned muso with a good ear and some limited ability on his chosen instrument the guitar – though a later purchase of a delay pedal helped him along. They met through an accomplice who drummed well (for a while). We managed to get a refund on the drummer and bagged a great deal when Mark, a beat machine with cash to buy a new kit joined up and was initiated into the group with the now infamous new bride roof fight.

Who writes the songs, or is it a collaborative effort?
During this time and unbeknownst to the three, a keen musician named Johnny had just moved to the city from the UK, following his heart but unfortunately leaving behind his guitar. Now guitarless, Johnny spent most of his time drinking and writing, and so unwittingly wrote the basis of what is now a good chunk of the songs and lyrics.

Where can we find you playing live?
We play all the local venues and have faced every kind of stage, sound, room & crowd which has made us a lot tighter and stronger in loads of ways. Our first gig was at this top venue but on a bit of a shitty night, we learnt that its not where but when you play, and we’ve since been back there to smash up a Saturday nite.

Are you writing anything new at the moment? Do we have any new tracks to look forward to?
We’ve got a solid catalogue of tunes and plenty more on the way. We picked five and recorded an e.p. in August. We spent three days at a premier studio, we actually couldn’t get the date we wanted because Flight of the Concords were in there. Those tracks were mixed and then bussed off to New York City to get mastered. They sound great by the way New York, thanks guys!

You are just about to release your song ‘Record’ through the Independent Charts, could you tell us a little more about the song and how it came to be?
We grabbed Record from those 5 for the ‘single’ or top track. There’s a bit of a weird disco feel goin on, in the best sense possible. It has a great intro; fast enough, and if you can remember a few lines you pretty much have it down, then just get the air guitar solo nailed and you’re done. It’s catchy, whistle it and see.

If you could play any venue with any artist who would it be and where?
At the moment we’re trying to get a slot with the Beatles at the Cavern but they never return our texts, otherwise we reckon we’d have done well as support for the stones at altamont, or maybe not, who knows.

What challenges have you faced as independent artists? What have you done to overcome these challenges?
Writing and playing music is by far the easiest part of being an unsigned band. We don’t have the management and PR hookups that come along with a major record deal so making contacts and figuring out how to get our music out there has been the biggest challenge, a learning curve.

How are you managing to balance Music and life?
Music and life… it’s not so much of a balancing act as you obviously can’t have one without the other. So we play music when we’ve ran out of jokes or beer; we do a lot of gigs so we can sometimes have them as our practices and jam the new stuff when we’re hanging out. We play great venues and we have a great set up, huge space, & as much noise as we can get away with until the police show.

We throw parties, do what we like and there have been some times, some bad times, but that’s the life part. There’s 4 band members in the new brides but there’s a lot of people who come see us or that we know who are just as much into this as we are, we’re just the soundtrack. Without the music we’d probably get into some bad habits.

Where do you see yourselves in five years time with the music? Is there some kind of master plan, or are you just going to keep making the music you love?
Both. The music will keep on happening. We’re working on a video – that’s something coming up to look forward to. We’ll gig, we’ll tour, we’ll do an album and then another. Chances are we’ll be playing your local dive soon, so be prepared! We’ve had some great interest from local and international promoters and we’re pretty excited about the future!

 

Thanks for talking to us guys, we can’t wait to hear record when it hits the Charts! Good luck with the video, hopefully you’ll be playing the local spots down London way in the future!


laurenceOctober 29, 2012
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THE FORES, JESS CLAYTON, THE CORRESPONDENTS, SOBER, ANA FREE, RACING GLACIERS, SINCERE, RICHIE HAWTIN, CAROUSEL are just some of the acts nominated for this year’s Download Music Awards!

Today the annual Download Music Awards announces the nominees for this year’s highly anticipated Awards Show taking place on the 9th of November.

Each year artists from around the UK are given the fantastic opportunity to be nominated for 10 categories, whilst thousands of fans vote to decide which artist wins in each category.

Previous winners the Saturdays won The Best Newcomer category at the first ever Download Music award in 2009, and have gone on to become the number one artist in the UK and internationally.

– http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N9GHITKOKPY

 

Leicester based group ‘The Fores’ are amongst this years nominees in several categories, including Best Newcomer, Best Music Video, and Best Single going head to head with artists such as Ana Free, Gemma Mewse, and Wildflowers. Other Nominees include acoustic songstress ‘Jess Clayton’ who is looking to steal Best Single, and four-piece indie folk band ‘Racing Glaciers’ who have their sights set on Best Album, if competition from ‘The Correspondents’ isn’t too much to handle!

The Download Music Awards is held in association with British Music Week, The International Independent Charts, and the Official European Charts. The awards ceremony was launched in 2009 to recognise the achievement of independent artists, DJ’s, and bands throughout all different genre’s of music including: rock, pop, acoustic, indie, electronic, and urban to name a few.

The Voting goes live from Tuesday, 30th October – 7th November

Email: voting@downloadmusicawards.org

Follow us on twitter: @theindiecharts

For tickets email: laurence@independentcharts.org

Or buy them online here: http://downloadmusicawards.eventbrite.co.uk/

 

The Full list of the Download Music Awards Nominations is as follows:

 

Best Newcomer

The Fores

Cold Fields

Moonjets

Jakobi

Ana Free

Chameleon Boy

Gemma Mewse

Kritikal

Nothing North of Alaska

The Boondock Hippy

Tom Bradley

Wildflowers

Zephyr Reign

Carousel

Sober

 

Best Indie Act

Will and the People

Carousel

Cold Fields

Moonjets

Jakobi

Moral Dilemma

Jess Clayton

Black Vendetta

Fred Irwin

Tiger Lilly

 

Best Acoustic Act

Carousel

Tom Bradley

The Boondock Hippy

Nothing North of Alaska

Jess Clayton

Fred Irwin

 

Best Live Performance

Moonjets

Ana Free

George Montague

Mercury Underground

Wildflowers

Grania

Tiger Lilly

 

Best Music Video

Sober – Tipsy

Carousel – Big Issue

The Fores – Let Go

Will and the People – Lion in the Morning Sun

Cold Fields – Never Get Back

 

Best Single

Ana Free – Electrical Storm

Cold Fields – Never Get Back

Gemma Mewse – Feels So Right

Sober – Tipsy

Jess Clayton – Voice for the Voiceless

Nothing North of Alaska – Memphis Time

Racing Glaciers – South

The Fores – Let Go

Tom Bradley – Sandy Shoes

Wildflowers – Took me to the River

Carousel – Big Issue

 

Best Album

George Montague – Have you met George

Kritikal – Urban Poetry

Racing Glaciers – Racing Glaciers

Zephyr Reign – Tempus Fugit

Becoming Real – Solar Dreams/Neon Decay

The Correspondents – What’s happened to Soho

Eugene McGuinness – The Invitation to the Voyage

Everything Everything – Arc

Daytona Lights – The Modern Landscape

 

Best Urban Act

Sober

Redz

Fliptrix

Sincere

Dot Rotten

Sneakbo

Cashtastic

Kritikal

 

Best DJ

DJ Pioneer

DJ Target

Logan Sama

Andy Moor

Richie Hawtin

Toddla T

 

Best Website

Cold Fields – www.cold-fields.com

Fred Irwin – www.fredirwin.com

Tiger Lilly – www.tigerlillymusic.co.uk

George Montague – www.georgemontague.com

The Boondock Hippy – www.theboondockhippy.co.uk

Fear of Fiction – www.fearoffiction.com

Jess Clayton – www.jessclayton.com


laurenceOctober 18, 2012
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During my regular search for new music, looking for something different, I came across this guy ‘Howl’. The first track ‘HV’ off his newly Released 10 track EP ‘Happy Valley’ instantly felt right at home in my head. Howl’s mix of ambient electronic sounds with gorgeously attended Vocals will melt you into the back of your chair. I couldn’t help but drift off peacefully, as I found the constant voice in my head silenced for once so I could take it all in. The space in the mix is fantastic, they say it’s just as much about the notes that are not played as much as the ones that are. Howl has superbly balanced the two to create a beautiful atmospheric EP satisfying your ears, but still leaving you wanting more.

After listening to the whole album, guess what? I wanted more. I got in touch with Josh (the man behind the music) and asked him about how the EP came about, and what ‘Howl’ was all about. I soon found out that Josh had written the EP in Hong Kong, where the ‘Happy Valley’ race track is located. It felt like fate. I myself am born in Hong Kong, and when we moved to England we named one of the Parks back home where I walked my Dog ‘Happy Valley’. The music so perfectly fit my foggy childhood memories of Hong Kong, though it retains a timeless, placeless quality that refused to leave my attention.

 

Just after releasing a single ‘Leo Johnson’ through the Independent Charts, Howl is playing at the Official Independent Charts Live Show at Cargo on Friday the 19th of Oct. I can’t wait to see what he has in store for the live act!

 

Support Howl by listening to and downloading the track ‘Leo Johnson’ he’s released on the Independent Charts: http://www.independentcharts.org/products-page/asia/leo-johnson/

 To listen to Howl’s ‘Happy Valley EP’ check out: http://howlhowlhowl.bandcamp.com/album/happy-valley

 

 

 



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