As Independent Venue Week continues we head to one of the country’s finest, the wonderful Colchester Arts Centre. Seriously though, those toilets will have you feeling like royalty – toilet-circuit indeed!
In town tonight are Holding Absence who are towards the end of a tour of the UK’s off the beaten track venues and the locals are clearly excited with the show a sell out.
Most of the audience are in the venue early to catch the support (always a wise move!) and up first the crowd are treated to the ferocious Your Misery. Controlling the stage as if they were seasoned veterans, the band are able to not just warm up the crowd but fully win them over. Certainly one to keep an eye on, Your Misery couldn’t have done any more tonight to make a statement.
Our second act, Australians Void of Vision, most definitely feel like a band that know how to make a statement of their own. The group burst onto stage and fill the venue with their huge sound. It’s an audio onslaught for the next forty-five minutes as the likes of ‘DOMINATRIX’, ‘THE LONELY PEOPLE’ and ‘INTO THE DARK’ leave the crowd desperate for more.
There may not be any more Void of Vision tonight, but you can expect to hear much more in the future. With a new EP coming soon, this could be a breakthrough year for the band.
Our headliners, Holding Absence, have felt like they are breaking out for a few years now. Certainly not ones to rest on their laurels; their touring schedule has been intense. The majority of those shows though have been support slots, so it’s refreshing to catch them at a headline show finally.
The core fanbase of the band appear very committed and there is anticipation in the air in this old church tonight. That anticipation boils over as the band arrive on stage and quickly run through ‘Monochrome’, ‘Beyond Belief’ and ‘Like A Shadow’ much to the delight of those fans.
The setlist tonight is a real mix of the bands releases with highlights including ‘Gravity’, ‘In Circles’ and new song ‘Aching Longing’. You’d perhaps expect a little more from a headline show, but I guess the old adage is to leave the audience wanting more.
After a finale of ‘Afterlife’ and ‘Wilt’, Holding Absence most definitely do just that. With so many sing-a-long anthems or bangers as the kids would say, and an engaging stage presence you’d hope that the band will live up to their early promise.
Three bands at different stages of their budding careers tonight all make a valuable impression. It’s worth remembering that nights like this are happening up and down the country, night in night out. It’s tough out there and venues and bands need your support, so perhaps think twice on spending hundreds of pounds on those Beyonce tickets and pop down to your local independent venue instead!
Welcome everyone to another edition of our weekly music News Report!
This week we begin with festival announcements and start off with the incredible first line-up reveal for 2000trees Festival.
Headlining the Saturday night will be Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes. They’ll be joined across the weekend by the likes of Hundred Reasons, Rival Schools, The Wonder Years, Bob Vylan, Holding Absence, Cancer Bats, Dream State, No Devotion, Saint Agnes, Press To Meco and many more!
We move our News Report on now to the best tour announcements from the past week and begin with the iconic Duran Duran.
The group have announced a run of UK and Ireland Arena shows for next year.
Simon Le Bon said: “2022 has been an extraordinary year for Duran Duran – mainly down to the incredible fans we have around the world. In July we celebrated our years together at Hyde Park as part of the British Summer Time Festival. Next Spring we will be back on home soil once again to continue the party. It’s remarkable to me that as a band, we are still hitting new milestones, still able to introduce the sound of DD to new generations of music lovers. We are truly grateful that we get to do what we do on a daily basis, and that we still love our job as much as we did when we started out some four decades ago.”
Scotland’s Dancing On Tables have released their debut album, ‘Colour In The Grey’, including the single, ‘So What’!
The band says, “It feels like the last 3 years of our life have all been building up to this album. You can hear the journey that we’ve been on as a group as you go through the tracks, with stories of love, happiness, loss and frustration sang on top of a sound that we have worked hard to define by combining our original rock influences with our favourite modern music alt-pop styles.
The album is a collection of songs that were put together over a time where as musicians, we were suddenly stuck at home after being used to being on the road for most of the year. Like most people, it was tough for us to stay motivated during this, but working together (remotely) on music was the highlight of each day and left us with over 70 tracks to choose from for this album.
For us, writing and recording this album really was the ‘colour in the grey’ of every day life at this point.”
Humour – ‘Jeans’
Fellow Scots Humour have released, ‘Jeans’, the final single from their EP, ‘Pure Misery’.
The band had the following to say about the single:
“Jeans is about a character who is internally trying to build himself up and convince himself that he’s a successful and confident no-nonsense man. But he periodically has lapses in this forced self-assuredness and realises that he is not any of those things and is in fact quite a sad, pathetic and laughable character. Much like myself.”
Jamie Beale – ‘Champagne People’
Jamie Beale has released debut album, ‘Hello Nimbus’ featuring the single ‘Champagne People’.
Speaking about the inspiration for the single, Jamie says: “ I feel that we are living in this weird age where people are willing to do anything for fame. You see it all the time on social media – it’s so easy to put up a veil and hide all the realities and imperfections of life that ultimately make us human. Quite often, in these industries that promote the idea of fame as success, people surround themselves with an entourage of fake people; people that are only really there to further their own careers. On the outside looking in, it seems that no-one in these circles are truly content, but instead are lonely and looking to fill that void with possessions or short lived moments of attention and gratification.
“I guess I can’t help but feel for these people, so I wrote a song about someone who’s trying to climb the social ladder, and ends up alone, hiding behind a pretty picture of how they want their life to look.”
Our News Report continues with news from the Yard Act camp. Bringing an end to their hugely successful campaign for debut album, ‘The Overload’, the group have revealed four special live dates next year.
The run will conclude with their biggest headline date so far at the legendary Brixton Academy!
This week saw Rival Sons return with news that they will be releasing a new album, ‘Darkfighter’ on March 10th.
The group also debuted their brand new single, ‘Nobody Wants To Die’, which you can listen to above.
Regarding ‘Nobody Wants to Die’, vocalist Jay Buchanan shares, “You live your life knowing that the sword of Damocles is hanging over your head by a thread. You’re fully aware of the impermanence of your existence, but you can’t think about it all the time—or it’ll fuck your life up.
I used to work in a mortuary as a service advisor for a few years, driving and opening the hearses. I’d attend three funerals per day. Sometimes, they would be filled over capacity. Other times, it would just be me, a priest, and a hole in the ground. It doesn’t matter who you are; the great equalizer is coming. I was thinking of this because the music sounded like pursuit.”
Elaborating on the genesis of ‘Darkfighter’, Buchanan notes, “’Darkfighter’ represents the cultural mitosis of isolation, the Pandemic, and the national fabric of the US getting looser and looser. When I say ‘Cultural Mitosis’, there are lines being drawn constantly. We’re so divided, and you can’t step over the lines without offending someone. It certainly informed my writing.
We recognized a responsibility to put a good word on people’s ears so there’s a good word coming back on their tongues too. We missed the joy of the live show and that magical interaction. When it was taken from us, that made me want to sing about topics that were important. There are strong themes on this record of loss of identity, preservation of joy, and beholding light and shape again.”
Lead guitarist Scott Holiday added, “Records are a healthy form of escapism. I hope this one takes you as far away as possible. Our intent was to create a cinematic body of work. As soon as the doors shut behind you, you’re enveloped on the ride. This is the sound of us really coming into our own. We’ve gotten further from our influences and gotten closer to what we are. ‘Darkfighter’ sounds like the Rival Sons.”
This week saw Tigercub return with their new single, ‘The Perfume of Decay’, which you can listen to above.
The track marks Tigercub’s debut release for Loosegroove Records, the label co-founded by Pearl Jam guitarist Stone Gossard, a longtime champion of the band.
“They say comparison is the thief of joy,” says Tigercub’s 7-foot frontman Jamie Hall,“and nowhere is this more acutely felt than on the internet; the public ledger where I must amend my social cv daily, to portray my life to others in the most rose tinted & ineffable way possible. The reality couldn’t be further from the truth of course, beneath this facade I am crumbling, cascading into despair and at odds with my emotions. ‘The Perfume of Decay’ is my expression of this feeling, an argument between affectation and naturalness. It marks the beginning of a new era for us – this is Tigercub at its heaviest, its most accomplished, and most unapologetic.” “Jamie Hall is not only an incredible songwriter, singer, and fucking wicked guitarist,” says Stone Gossard,“but he also has a deep understanding of art and music history. This guy dabbles in it all — visual arts, digital media, world history. This band is generational, and Jamie’s a natural star. Loosegroove couldn’t be happier working with Tigercub.”
“It’s all about opposites,” Jamie Hall says. “Sweet-and-salty popcorn tends to taste better than regular popcorn, even though those are two opposing forces. I wanted to nail that concept with our heavy guitars, softer-sung vocals, Can-style grooves, and a bit of shoegaze. Counterpoints can come together and make a powerful connection. I’ve crossed the threshold from my 20s to my 30s, so I’m getting older, but I’m also entering my prime. This record is a reflection of that.”
Pulled Apart By Horses share video for ‘Rinse & Repeat’
Pulled Apart By Horses this week shared the video for their single, ‘Rinse & Repeat’, which you can watch above. The track comes from new album, ‘Reality Cheques’, which is out now!
Commenting on the track, vocalist Tom Hudson says the single is “an ode to all that have found themselves trapped in the darker corners of the music industry. The repetitive whirring of the machine. A spanner in the works of the daily grind. A helping hand to break out of a vicious cycle. The realisation that they need you more than you need them. Inspired by seeing Ziggy Stardust stood in line at the jobcentre. More punk rock than Iggy advertising life insurance.”
There was also more new music this week from Witch Fever. The group debuted new single, ‘Beauty and Grace’, which you can check out above.
The track features on debut album, ‘Congregation’, which is out October 21st.
Singer Amy Walpole says of the track, “‘Beauty and Grace’ ended up being the dark horse of the record! Before we went into the studio it wasn’t one of our faves but Sam really brought it out of its shell! The song is about pushing back against oppressive feminine beauty standards whilst also finding a place for femininity that you enjoy and makes you feel powerful !! Femininity is not a weakness, as much as society may tell you it is! If it empowers you and brings you joy it’s a strength!”
Norwich-based post-hardcore outfit Other Half have debuted new track ‘Slab Thick’.
Commenting on the video, the band say: “BSM wanted a high-concept, high-production pop video to help shift some serious units so we wrangled the few dogs we know and the one cat we own to produce three and a half minutes of visual magic.”
“We like doing everything ourselves; for DIY punk kudos and because we’re tight and awkward, so it was fun figuring out how to make it look like we’re all playing in a room together even when one of us was filming the whole time.”
“For the second part of the video we had next to nothing and were filming some pretty shudder-inducing stuff in the local park when our friend’s Roya and Charlie walked past with their dogs; Daisy and Lily. Never one to miss a free opportunity for content, we scooped those dogs up, spun around a bit and sung at the camera. Rinse, repeat and the rest is history. Thanks to all the nice animals that starred alongside us.”
IOTA – ‘Ballet Box’
‘Ballet Box’, the latest single from Bristol-based rock five-piece IOTA is out now.
Explaining the inspiration behind the single, vocalist and lyricist Jodie Robinson explains, “Its about a ballerina inside of a jewellery box coming to life as the box closes. Inspired by the thought of the ‘object’ coming to life and how they’d never know what it was like to be outside of that box and nobody would ever know that they were alive. There was a play on the element of control and feeling trapped, fighting with that part of your mind. It’s very much a song about ‘Is there more to life and can we fulfil that void’.”
Blue Violet – ‘Favourite Jeans’
Blue Violet follow up debut album with new single, ‘Favourite Jeans’.
“For all of the chaos and hardships that Covid brought to the world it also provide ample time for people to be creative” reflects singer Sarah Gotley of the ‘Love, Hate & Forgiveness’ EP. “So although we only released our debut album in April this year we wanted to bring out some of the music that we’d been working on in that time”.
Iron Maiden announce new Triple Vinyl to commemorate 40th Anniversary of ‘The Number of the Beast’
The legendary Iron Maiden have announced the release of a commemorative triple black vinyl album in honour of the 40th Anniversary of seminal third album, ‘The Number Of The Beast’, which was also the first to feature Bruce Dickinson on vocals and was to become the record which catapulted the band to international stardom.
Included in the new vinyl package is ‘Beast Over Hammersmith’ – available now officially for the very first time on vinyl – featuring the live concert from March 1982’s now legendary Hammersmith Odeon London show from the ‘Beast On The Road’ World Tour.
Recorded only days before the release of ‘The Number Of The Beast’ album, it’s remarkable to think these now classic songs at that time were still brand new, unfamiliar and being heard live by fans for the very first time. A real piece of history in the making.
Steve Harris comments, “On this vinyl release we get the chance to put ‘Total Eclipse’ in its rightful spot on the album for the first time. The reason it didn’t make it in the first place was that it was all a mad rush when we were finishing the record and we had to get the ‘Run To The Hills’ single out before the tour and we basically had to pick a B-side and it was between ‘Gangland’ and ‘Total Eclipse’ and we just picked the wrong one, really! I think ‘Total Eclipse’ is a stronger song and the album would have been stronger if it had been on there.”
With new album, ‘The Calton Songs’, out soon on October 14th, Gun have shared the new reinvigorated version of firm fan favourite ‘Inside Out’, which you can listen to above.
As Jools Gizzi says: “When the pandemic hit we realised that it was the perfect time to try and counteract the bleakness that was all around. It felt like we couldn’t write anything, or of course tour. Out of that darkness came a desire to completely rework these songs that we know the fans love, and bring a different, stripped down vibe”.
Dante Gizzi added: “It’s ironic that those feelings of negativity led to something so positive, a celebration of our career up to now”.
Willie J Healey has announced that his new album, ‘Bunny’, will be out March 24th. Healey, who support Florance + The Machine on tour this November, also debuted new track, ‘Dreams’ which you can listen to above.
Willie says, “‘Dreams’ is a song I wrote when thinking about the cost of an ambition. The idea behind the video is, what would life be like if you had to carry all of the money you made on your back, and that if you did have to carry it you probably wouldn’t want as much.’”
Asylums have this week debuted their new single, ‘Instant Coffee’, which you can check out above.
The track comes from upcoming album, ‘Signs of Life’, which is out on October 28th.
Producer Dave Eringa says of “Instant Coffee”:“It’s like all of Luke’s songwriting to date has been leading up to Instant Coffee, a beautifully melancholic perfect pop song with real depth! Late 90’s Albarn meets the great bits of American indie at a classical concert & they all get together for a party!”
Incredibly talented youngster Nandi Bushell took the next step in her musical evolution this week but debuted her first single, ‘The Shadows’, which you can listen to above.
“Early in 2022 my Dad fell into a depression as his autoimmune disease worsened. It was a difficult time for our family. I wanted to help cheer my Dad up by writing a song for him. He would describe his feelings to me and I would put them into lyrics letting him know, I would be there for him.
My Dad is now doing much better, he is on medication that is helping with his autoimmune disease and has recovered from his depression.
If you are suffering from mental health issues, please reach out for help. If you know of any good charities, groups or organisation in your area please share them in the comments for others.
We bring our News Report towards a close now with the best tour announcements from the past week and start with Tom Grennan.
Grennan revealed an Arena Tour set for March next year which concludes at the O2 Arena in London.
The news follows new single, ‘All These Nights’ and comes ahead of new album ‘What Ifs and Maybes’.
Speaking about the new album, Tom said: “I’ve called my new album What Ifs & Maybes. It’s about going with your gut, not your head, because you never know what’s going to happen. I’m not afraid to jump into the unknown – because it’s exciting! It’s about rolling the dice and living your best life with nothing to lose. I’m in a new creative space, and I know I’m finally the artist I want to be. I’m so buzzing for these shows, my biggest gigs to date. I can’t wait to get out and play these new songs to everyone. Let’s go!”
TikTok star and queen of angsty pop/rock, Charlotte Sands, has released her hard-hitting, fan favourite single ‘Tantrum’.
On the track, she said, “‘Tantrum’ is so special to me because since the first time I played it live, people immediately latched onto it and have been fighting for its release ever since. This song not only represents experiences of anxiety, panic, and rebellion throughout my life and career but also the journey and relationship between me and the people who have made my career possible. I’ve been playing it live for over a year now and I’m thankful for the people who have pushed me out of my comfort zone to release a song that without them would still be sitting in a folder somewhere on my phone. I am overwhelmed with excitement for this song to finally be out in the world, it’s been a year in the making (almost to the exact day) and I can’t wait to finally be able to throw a tantrum together.”
As Sirens Fall – ‘heaven (spat us back out)’
As Sirens Fall share their new single, ‘heaven (spat us back out)’.
‘i started writing heaven (spat us back out) just as our last ep ‘l’appel du vide (part 1)’ was releasing. that ep was a project about grief, and ‘heaven’ very much comes from that same place. it’s about giving up on the hopeful delusions that often come packaged with grief. it’s about realising you’re coming of age in a dark world and choosing to face it all and grow up anyway – choosing to live.’ Mikey Lord, Vocals
Arliston – ‘Hold My Wine’
Arliston return with the stirring and spirited new single, ‘Hold My Wine’, taken from forthcoming EP ‘Even In The Shade’.
Vocalist Jack Ratcliffe says, “We’ve been wanting to make something a bit more playful for a while, so when we first hit on that chorus idea and made a silly middle-class pun on ‘hold my beer’, everything just fell into place around it. This one was a lot of fun to make.”
Jack adds,“The song is about that occasional moment of recognition when you look up from the narrow corridor of your own thoughts and are seized by the idea that everyone else has progressed and developed, while you are stuck in an unchanged rut. The protagonist attempts to do something about it in the chorus — but inevitably, he gets it wrong.”
Welcome everyone to another edition of our weekly music News Report!
We start this week with festival announcements and we can’t begin anywhere else other than Slam Dunk Festival. The dual location event has revealed the first batch of bands set for Leeds and Hatfield next year and it’s a stunner!
On tap are The Offspring, Enter Shikari, Billy Talent, Bowling For Soup, Less Than Jake, Creeper, Holding Absence, Trash Boat and Kids In Glass Houses amongst many more.
Rou Reynolds of Enter Shikari comments:
“I’ve been intoxicated by the idea of headlining Slam Dunk again ever since our Take To The Skies celebration headline set back in 2017. It’s such a great festival, always nails its bills, and has the added bonus that us lads can actually cycle to the Southern date, being that Hatfield is a neighbouring town to us!
In fact, essentially, this will be our biggest “hometown” show ever, now that the festival has grown even more. I cannot wait. In fact, I will not wait. I demand we play this tomorrow!
I think playing outdoors is my favourite thing to do in life. Just being able to look up and see the sky, with the expanse of people underneath it, all sharing the same emotions and experience, it’s just such a raw, beautiful, and reifying thing.
Slam Dunk is a festival I try to attend every year regardless of whether we’re playing it. I love both the sites, and it’s always full of mates and has such a convivial vibe. (That’s my word of the week).
We’re already thinking about stage production ideas, we’re going to do everything we can to make this our biggest show yet.”
Staying in Leeds, and Live At Leeds: In The City grew by some 80+ acts this week.
Joining the already announced Pale Waves, Dinosaur Pile-Up and Baby Queen will be the likes of Sundara Karma, White Lies, Swim Deep, Lottery Winners, King No-One, The Pale White, The Hara and many more.
Speaking about the new additions to Live At Leeds: In The City, Festival Promoter Joe Hubbard said: “After the incredible reaction to our first wave of names, we’re delighted to announce over 80 new artists joining us across Leeds City Centre this October. There’s something incredible about bringing together some of the most exciting names in new music that us in the Live At Leeds office have been playing constantly or lucky enough to see this year – and Live At Leeds: In The City 2022 feels like the perfect combination of artists we know are set for massive things in the year ahead.
I can’t wait to dive around the city catching set after set of must-see moments, and we’re sure that everyone will come away from the festival with countless new favourite artists”
Our News Report moves on to the biggest tour announcements from the past week, but we start off with another huge summer show set for 2023.
Courteeners will be returning to Heaton Park to celebrate the 15th Anniversary of their debut album, ‘St.Jude’.
Speaking about the special ‘St Jude’ Heaton Park show, Liam Fray says: “They grow up so fast. Can’t believe our darling St. Jude is 15 next year. Think it’s time for a celebration and we all know that great things come in threes….The Star Wars Trilogy, Sooty, Sweep & Soo and now, here we are, with the third instalment of ‘Courteeners at Heaton Park’.
June 2015. June 2019 and now June 2023 …
This time, to celebrate the 15th anniversary of its release we’ll be playing ST. JUDE (in full) PLUS (of course) THE HITS. I can’t think of any better way to celebrate than to make the pilgrimage to Heaton Park with like-minded souls and lose ourselves like it’s 2008. And, because we’re good like that, we’ve remastered the original album … GOD BLESS THE BAND. GOD BLESS THE FANS. OMNE TRIUM PERFECTUM.’
Watch Daytime TV on our ‘Discover’ New Music Podcast
Arctic Monkeys debut new single ‘There’d Better Be A Mirrorball’
Our News Report turns now to the best new music releases from the past week and we start with the iconic Arctic Monkeys.
Last week the band revealed that new album, ‘The Car’, will be released on October 21st. This week the band debuted the first single from the album, ‘There’d Better Be A Mirrorball’, which you can check out above.
The Wonder Years share ‘Old Friends Like Lost Teeth’
As we continue our News Report we look now at The Wonder Years who this week shared new track, ‘Old Friends Like Lost Teeth’, which you can check out above.
The track will feature on upcoming album, ‘The Hum Goes On Forever’, which is out September 23rd.
“As much as I try not to dwell on loss, I can’t help myself from thinking about it, writing about it, singing about it,” Vocalist Dan Campbell explains. “This is a song for another friend who passed too soon and about how I wish I could stop myself from opening the sutures, about how I know it’ll be painful to play live, and how powerless I am to do anything else.”
Pulled Apart By Horses share ‘Sleep In Your Grave’
Pulled Apart By Horses this week shared new track, ‘Sleep In Your Grave’, which you can check out above. The track comes ahead of fifth album ‘Reality Cheques’, out September 30th.
Commenting on the band’s sonic evolution for the new record, vocalist Tom Hudson says: “One major thing we all chatted about was the ‘less is more’ approach, so we made a collective decision for me to ditch my guitar. It was a logical and simple way of trimming the fat, it gave us a more direct ‘to the point’ urgency. Instead of the racket of multiple duelling guitars and a cacophony of noise, everything had a pocket to sit in. A sonic corner. PABH 2.0.”
“Whilst we were working through writing and jamming, we also experimented with load of different recording techniques, an array of vintage microphones that we’d accumulated, trashed 70’s WEM guitar combo amps, routing vocals through old fender spring reverb heads, manipulating sounds with Space Echo tape effects and a load of other things for us to play around with.”
October Drift released new single, ‘Waltzer’, this week, which you can check out above. The tracks will feature on upcoming album, ‘I Don’t Belong Anywhere’, which is out October 14th.
Regarding the single frontman Kiran Roy says, “‘Waltzer’ always makes me think of Robert Eggars film The Lighthouse. The isolation and spiralling madness of the film really echoes with this song. I guess it’s mainly about the fog of depression. It’s a kind of focus lens on my lowest and darkest thoughts, as well as a reflection of people I love and care about who have themselves battled with these kinds of things.”
Check out Episode 10 of The Full Pelt Music Podcast with guests October Drift
Charlotte Wessels shares latest single ‘Toxic’
Charlotte Wessels debuted her latest single, ‘Toxic’, this week which you can listen to above. The track will feature on new album, ‘Tales From Six Feet Under Vol II’, which is out October 7th.
On ‘Toxic’, Charlotte says: “‘Toxic’ is a direct response to the populism, greed, misogyny and victim blaming that come screaming from our screens on a daily basis, and with the recent overturning of Roe v Wade, it has sadly become only more relevant since its initial release on Patreon. I hope you like the song but I mostly hope the issues it deals with will be a thing of the past before I am.”
Doom trap pioneer Mimi Barks has announced her highly anticipated upcoming mixtape ‘DEADGIRL’ which is set for release in December 2022. She has also dropped a new offering in the form of defying single ‘nihil’.
“‘nihil’ is the first track I wrote after having my entire music collection and visuals wiped off all DSP’s including YouTube in 2020. And just when I entered the void, thinking this is it, my brother KOEN sent this beat, which lead me to writing the first song for what would later become the DEADGIRL Mixtape. I needed to move forward from this, and “nihil” be my reboot in a paradoxical way.”“There lies great power in resistance” – Mimi Barks
Sunsleeper – ‘Quitter’
Indie rock band Sunsleeper have shared their new single ‘Quitter’.
“’Quitter’ is about the pains and joys of being a band,” says vocalist Jeffery Mudgett. “How touring is both incredibly fulfilling while also being a detriment to normalcy and comfortability. Poking fun at the comparison game. The realization that creating music in a live scenario is often the place I feel the most present, when I allow myself to be.”
noyou – ‘Same Old Story’
Having recently exploded onto the scene, Synthetic Pop-Rock band noyou have dropped their new single ‘Same Old Story’.
“Same Old Story explores the anxieties and stresses that come with adult life. Are we ‘on track’ with where we’re supposed to be for our age? The track deals with the repetition and monotony of the everyday and the struggles of wanting to be released from it. The train never stops, but what is our destination?” – noyou front man Connor Jobes.
Keep an eye on our Socials this week for the latest episode of the ‘Discover’ New Music Podcast with guests noyou!
Welcome everyone to another edition of our weekly music News Report, where we roundup the best news from the past week. We start this week with the latest tour announcements, including the above from The Hunna!
Having just revealed the details of their upcoming new self-titled album, the band have now scheduled in a lengthy UK Tour for later this year. Support comes from Kid Kapichi and Lucy Deakin.
‘Trash’, the lead single from the new album kicks things off by giving the music industry both barrels, taking pot-shots at the execs who told them “TikTok, TikTok or else you get dropped”.
“We’re not calling anyone specific out,“ explains Ryan. “it’s just overall industry suckiness. It highlights things we’ve experienced in the industry over the years and things we see going on and hear about now. There’s a lot of bad shit that still goes on in the industry and a lot of it gets swept under the rug. But we’re in the position where we’re on our fourth album, we feel refreshed and confident and this is what we’re going to say. You either like it or you don’t, it’s cool either way. We are who we are.”
Nile Rodgers & Chic announces End of Summer Parties
The legendary Nile Rodgers and Chic have announced two massive concert appearances at the iconic London venue O2 Academy Brixton, on Monday 19th September 2022 as well as a second show at O2 Victoria Warehouse, Manchester on the 21st of September.
Nile Rodgers said, “After the blues of Covid we’ve had an incredible summer in the UK getting up front and close with all of our incredible fans. What better way to celebrate the last day of summer and the first day of autumn than with our final UK shows of the year at Brixton and Manchester. We want to invite all the Lionesses who’ve made the whole country so proud to get up on stage for what will truly be Good Times!”
Another band with new tour dates to reveal as we continue our News Report is none other than The Wonder Years, who will hit the UK this November!
Speaking of the tour, frontman Dan ‘Soupy’ Campbell, says “Fun Fact: We’ve been touring the UK longer than anywhere in the world, including the US. This year marks 15 years since our first UK tour and the memories we’ve made—from playing literal basements up to Alexandria Palace—have been and continue to be some of our most treasured. So it’s with an immeasurable joy that we get to tell you today that, for the first time since 2019, we’re doing a headlining UK tour this November. We can’t wait to play everything for you—new stuff from THGOF, old favourites, the whole damn thing.”
A single piece of festival news in our News Report this week and it comes from Manchester event Neighbourhood Festival.
The festival has revealed a second wave of acts including Pastel, Himalayas, Michael Gallagher, Planet, Rats, Rosellas, and Youth Sector.
They join the already announced The Snuts, Everything Everything, Sundara Karma, Baby Queen, Lauran Hibberd, Louis Dunford, Stone, Ten Tonnes, The Goa Express, The Royston Club, The Skinner Brothers and Courting!
This week also saw IDLES debut the video for their track, ‘Stockholm Syndrome’.
Speaking on the video, directors Charlotte Gosch and the band’s own Lee Kiernan explain, “The process of making the video was very fulfilling for the both of us as we were able to physically create what we were imagining. Both the masks and shapes were handmade and painted by ourselves and friends.
Working with our DOP Rob French we were also able to realise the long shots of each verse and the opening scene of the dancers. We both love the exhaustive and immediate feeling that a long shot can convey, like in Gus Van Sant’s Gerry, which we referenced quite literally.
The initial idea of the video was to try and visualise the monotony hell of having to work to survive and how the ‘machine’ eventually engulfs you and strips you of your freedoms. But we wanted to achieve this in a metaphorical way that kept the meaning as open as possible. So it becomes rather a visual representation that can be read in many different ways.”
There was also new music from LIFE this week as they debuted new single, ‘Duck Egg Blue’, which you can check out above.
The track will feature on new album, ‘North East Coastal Town’, which is out on August 19th.
Speaking on the new release vocalist Mez says: “‘Duck Egg Blue’ is a realist’s love song. The journey of trying to navigate through each other’s feelings and emotions, the strains of close quarters trapped in a tiny flat, the minutiae of everyday life. The overarching sentiment is that no matter what happens, after all that is said and done, we love each other, and we are there for each other.”
Fellow previous ‘Discover New Music Playlist members Oakman have also released new music this week. You can listen to new single, ‘All The Way Up’, above.
About the song, the band says, “‘All The Way Up’represents this long journey in a life between fear, hesitation and the desire to never stop going further. Since we were born, we all have dreams that we never stop fighting for. For which we will always be regarded as an alien by others because we are often misunderstood and not supported. And when everything else gets in the way, it’s often psychologically hard to continue to find strength. But every day is a new day and every day brings a new strength to keep going all the way up.”
The Lounge Society have shared new track, ‘Upheaval’, the latest track to be taken from their upcoming debut album ‘Tired of Liberty’, out August 26th.
The band comments, “Upheaval has a calmer atmosphere than anything we’ve done before and looking back on the album as a whole, it may in fact be one of the most important tracks on there. In the studio Dan [Carey, producer] really helped us bring a certain vintage feel to life – with deep textured acoustic guitars, heavily impacted by the ambient room mixing we focused on in the closing stages of the album. This song, more than anything else we’ve ever done, feels like us together as four mates playing a song that we love.”
Grave Goods – ‘Source’
Grave Goods have shared their new single, ‘Source’, taken from debut album ‘TUESDAY. NOTHING EXISTS.’, which is out 9th September.
On the track, drummer Sarah Grimes said, “This was the second song we wrote. It was written on drums and guitar first, we wanted it to be really minimal in the verse with drums and vocals and contrasted with louder choruses with the guitar and drums working together with bass added later. When we were structuring the song we took the guitar line from the chorus and used it as the intro to hook people in.
When we wrote the song initially, I had a mic set up beside me and I whispered “ha ha” at the end of each bar during the verses. Those were dropped as we started to play the song live but while we were recording we decided to add it back in – me whispering “Ha Ha” on my tiptoes trying to reach Lois’ mic.”
ENOLA – ‘Strange Comfort’
Melbourne-based singer, songwriter, producer and multi-instrumentalist ENOLA, sharesnew single ‘Strange Comfort’.
ENOLA says of the track, “There is a comfort in knowing that suffering can be a universal experience. We are alone, yet together in our aloneness.”
On the accompanying video they say, “In the film I am not playing a role or character & I’m not playing myself as I am today. I am looking back at a past self and a time & place gone. A time of fearlessness, hopelessness & rebellion.”
With the pandemic taking a hold back in early 2020, Download Festival became one of the first major festival victims. It was perhaps fitting therefore that the small Pilot version of the event was the first step on the road back to normality last year.
That does mean though that as we head into Donington Park in 2022, it is the first fully fledged festival since the 2019 edition. After three long years, it is finally time for rock and metal fans to convene again on these hallowed grounds.
There are a number of changes this year to the layout of the festival but the best change is the installation of a strange golden orb in the sky. The usual brown flooring has also been painted green. Yes, goodbye Drownload and hello sunburn!
The main changes to the festival relate to the layout of the campsites, parking and transport hubs. Given these new changes, a little extra signage may have assisted seasoned attendees finding their way around, but in general the changes work well. There is a lot of walking required, however there always is at Donington Park however the event is laid out.
Once inside the area the setup is pretty standard if a little cut back with smaller stages, fewer food stalls and no wrestling or other extra areas. But, it’s Download and everyone is just glad to be here.
So then, on to the music! Opening the main stage on Friday are NWOCR favourites Wayward Sons who make the most of their short time on stage. They are quickly followed by Canadians Theory (of a Deadman) who also only have a short time to show their stuff. Thankfully for them they are able to call upon some festival-perfect material as the crowd sing along to ‘Bitch Came Back’, ‘Hate My Life’ and ‘Bad Girlfriend’.
Recently rejigged Bury Tomorrow follow on the main stage and bring the first real taste of heavy to the festival. The band are clearly honoured by the opportunity and try their best to win over the audience, with our first pyro of the weekend helping to add to the occasion. By the time the band leave the stage and a pile of bodies in the audience, the set has to be considered a success.
We go walkabout next and visit first the second stage for a man who has already played Download Festival with both Alter Bridge and Slash, Myles Kennedy. With two solo albums now to his name, Kennedy only grows his legacy with another top class performance.
Secondly we head to the Avalanche Stage for something new. American pop-punk band Meet Me @ the Altar have intensifying hype around them, and keeping with the tone of the day they are able to grasp this opportunity with both hands. Expect bigger things from the band in the near future.
As day one begins to draw to a close with catch two of Download’s house bands with Skindred on the main stage and Airbourne over on the second stage. Both bands attract big crowds, because fans know what to expect from them. High energy, entertaining rock shows are delivered by both as fans get to revel in what they have missed over the last three years.
Having delivered an incredible headlining performance at the Pilot event last summer, Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes return to Donington Park next to headline the second stage. Carter and co show the crowd what they missed last year with another stunning performance. This band must be considered one of the best live bands on the planet and who would put it past them headlining the main stage in the future.
Download Festival after all needs to begin focusing on that next generation of headline acts, because many of the old guard are saying farewell. It is the ‘End of the Road’ for KISS, but not before one final triumphant showcase this year.
The band are able to deliver all the pageantry of a KISS show with every party trick played with precision. As the fans walk away with ‘Rock and Roll All Nite’ stuck in their heads, the band have brought the party and night one is closed out in style.
Saturday morning brings a fresh day with the sun still shining bright, but early risers at the main stage are left waiting with opening act The Raven Age almost forty minutes late. When the band do arrive they are able to show their continued growth with a matured performance.
This delay subsequently leads to a 30+ minute lag on main stage times throughout the rest of the day which plays havoc with fans carefully curated schedules. It does mean however that we can head to the second stage and catch the energetic Cassyette who is capitalising on the momentum earned over the last year.
It’s then back to the main stage for the classic rock sounds of Those Damn Crows and Monster Truck. Both bands continue the impressive start to the festival. Clearly every act is out to cast off the shackles of recent years and make an impression.
Both of these bands leave the fans wanting more, which is all a band can do with these early festival slots. It’s probably a good thing then, that these two bands will be touring the UK together later this year!
Up next for us is one of the performances of the weekend from Holding Absence over on the Avalanche stage. With songs like ‘Afterlife’ and ‘Wilt’ seemingly made for festival crowds to sing along to, the band completely own the packed tent during their time on stage.
Shinedown are also a band that knows how to control a crowd, and they have a large crowd to play with next on the main stage. With a new album on the way, the band incorporate new tracks ‘The Saints of Violence and Innuendo’ and ‘Planet Zero’ into their tried and tested, crowd pleasing set.
It’s then back to the Avalanche stage for another standout performance. This time it’s Creeper on the stage, the band again showing an innate ability to hold the audience in the palm of their hands. Creeper continue to grow and evolve and it will be interesting to see where the band head next.
We stick next to the Avalanche stage for headliners Funeral For A Friend. Perhaps it’s the fact that we’ve just witnessed two fantastic performances on this stage from Holding Absence and Creeper but something feels a little off for this set. It’s not a lacklustre performance as the band give it their all, but on a weekend full of great performances what is probably a really good one feels a little underwhelming.
There is never anything underwhelming however about Iron Maiden. The band are icons for a reason and their current stage show is possibly their best ever. With Maiden on form and a packed Donington Park in fine voice, this headline set was always going to be one for the ages, and it doesn’t disappoint.
Now onto Sunday morning, with hangovers taking hold, feet aching and stamina’s waning. It’s up to Wargasm to blow away any cobwebs as they open the main stage, and that’s just what they do. The band are developing into something of a marmite band, but there is no doubting the passion and energy that they put into every performance; and judging by the reaction they go down very well this morning.
Sidetracking from the music for a moment, we commented in our Neck of the Woods Festival review about the cost of food and drink this year. There are no surprises therefore that prices are high at Download Festival, but the quality on offer at that price is disappointing. Inflation is one thing, but shrinkflation begins to rub, and more than one meal this weekend leaves a sour taste in our mouth (figuratively and literally in one case!).
Well, if the amenities on offer are disappointing, thankfully the music isn’t. As we have said, the quality of performances this weekend is consistently high. Both The Velveteers in the Dogtooth tent and The Last Internationale on the second stage are fine examples of this quality from top to bottom.
Massive Wagons follow on the second stage and again appear on top form. As many bands have this weekend, they tailor their set list perfectly for their time on stage and it’s wall to wall bangers as the kids would say.
Tremonti next are more methodical as they display their technical prowess. Mark Tremonti and co are mightily impressive and the audience are equally receptive.
We shoot then across to the main stage where Rise Against are another band that fail to meet expectations. The band are an incredible force, but sadly today they struggle to translate from the stage for whatever reason.
Volbeat have no problems though as they are instantly able to grab the audience. They deliver a career spanning setlist to the delight of the field, which shows just why they have established themselves as potential future headliners.
We then find time to dart across to the Avalanche stage one last time as Trash Boat showcase one of the albums of last year, ‘Don’t You Feel Amazing?’. Trash Boat have really come into their own and have the entire tent bouncing along.
Korn are the penultimate band to play the main stage this weekend and they make the most of their position with one of the best performances of the festival. The band are longtime Download Festival favourites and they evidence today just why that is.
There is another look at the future next as Yonaka pack out the Dogtooth tent. Those that have made the effort to catch the band are rewarded by an incredible performance from one of the most exciting young rock bands around.
Last but certainly not least with have Biffy Clyro who are one of the biggest rock bands in the UK, but seemingly another marmite band amongst regular Download Festival goers.
One thing for certain is that those that chose to the stay until the end are rewarded by way of a sublime headlining performance. Biffy Clyro are another level live act and tonight they deliver a superb closing show fitting of closing this event.
Consistent high calibre performances have encapsulated the return of Download Festival this weekend. The event has a special place in the hearts of its fan base and will celebrate next year with a special four day 20th anniversary celebration. We can’t wait!
Staying with new releases and this week saw The Kooks debut new single and video ‘Jesse James’. You can watch the video above.
The track comes ahead of new album, ’10 Tracks to Echo in the Dark’ which arrives July 22nd.
Starring the British model, Lottie Moss (half sister of the iconic, Kate Moss) – the video sees Lottie dancing and playing guitar in a futuristic, space-like bedroom setting.
Lottie comments on starring in the video, “It was so fun to be involved in this, I’ve never been able to live out my main character dream before so this was really cool for me to do! I have loved The Kooks since I was younger so that made it even more special!“
Frontman Luke Pritchard comments on the track and video, “Really excited to release ‘Jessie James’, it’s a song about not always trying to prove yourself and losing the ego. We are so thrilled to have the amazing Lottie Moss to bring the song to life in her retro future bedroom floating through space, she really elevated the euphoria of the song with her performance! Check it out now”
Crows debuted new single ‘Garden of England’ this week which you can watch the video for above.
The track will feature on new album, ‘Beware Believers’ which is out April 1st!
Singer James Cox explains, “This is straight-up our Brexit anthem. Don’t get me wrong, I couldn’t care less which way you voted, your vote, your choice. I just hated how much Brexit had become so ingrained in our day to day life. First thing I’d hear about when I woke up and the last thing I’d read before I went to sleep at night. It became all people spoke about. ‘Garden of England’ is more of a comment about the divisiveness it caused, splitting families, friends, widening the north-south divide and empowering nationalism. Public figures’ ability to lie publicly and not be held accountable, it’s just dangerous dog-whistle politics that doesn’t belong in the UK.”
Another band with a new album on the way is Sunflower Bean, who release ‘Headful of Sugar’ on May 6th!
This week they debuted new single ‘Roll The Dice’, the video of which you can watch above.
An indictment of the so-called American Dream, ‘Roll The Dice’ was written about how many young adults now need side-hustles to secure their futures. The band explains, “Almost everyone we know struggles with money. The traditional routes towards success and stability in America have severely narrowed. The only way to get ahead is to take big risks and roll the dice.”
First up are fuzz-rock five-piece Pit Pony and their new single ‘Black Tar’.
Speaking about the track, singer Jackie Purver explains “It’s quite literally about anxiety, about putting the work in to improve things and going back to the beginning. Feeling like you can’t get anything right and you’ll feel like that forever. The whole track being the same riff throughout, and driven by the constant throbbing bass, really conveys the feeling of that constant cycle. That treadmill you feel like you can’t get off.”
Jackie continues, “Of course you do get off, and you can feel better, but it takes time and work. The jagged and garagey sound lends itself to the stark melody and lyrics. It’s not one to overthink. By the end of the song I’m telling myself to snap out of it and keep going.”
‘CAROUSEL’ – REMINDERS
Next is the new single from Isle of Wight indie punks Reminders, ‘Carousel’!
Commenting on the track, front man Leo Dyke says: “‘Carousel’ is a song about telling people how you feel and looking for a sense of relief. Nearly everyday we are asked a variation of ‘how are you?’, and we all say ‘good’, and that made me think; what sort of chaos would ensue if we were honest? At the time I was desperate to be honest with somebody about how I felt, but I didn’t feel comfortable telling anybody ‘I need to vent’. This song is all the things I would have said if I felt as though I could have.”
“The genesis of the lyrics comes from a John Lennon song called ‘Watching the Wheels’, except that song is pretty optimistic. ‘Carousel’ is its angry step-child. Bottling all of my feelings only led to being pissed off with everybody anyway, and caused me to fall out with the people around me. That’s what the bridge is about: we’re all too insecure to talk about how we feel, while being simultaneously too arrogant to concede, and once a row has gone too far, nobody is willing to stand down or rationalise, when all I was really looking for was someone to talk to.”
‘CIGARETTE SMILE’ – THIS DAZE
Finally this week is the track ‘Cigarette Smile’ from Norwegian indie punks This Daze.
Regarding the single This Daze say, “‘Cigarette Smile’ is the colourful person outside the pub with a cig between their lips. The song portrays adolescent themes of distant love together with the figurative and literal fear of meeting each other. The lyric “pick me up in your painted life” represents the wish of getting swept up by the romanticised picture you make upon meeting someone for the first time. If this image is flawed or genuine it does not matter for young adults taking chances. This song for us encapsulates the feelings of youth and being young. We feel that both the lyrics, the attitude of our performances and the urgency of the song reflects being young.”
Welcome to a bumper edition of our weekly music News Report! A plethora of festival announcements to get through this week, so let’s get start with Download Festival!
New additions this week included Skindred, SKYND, Dirty Honey, Kid Brunswick, The Velveteers and the incredible Yonaka.
They join a massive line-up headlined by Kiss, Iron Maiden and Biffy Clyro. Other highlights include A Day To Remember, Korn, Shinedown, Volbeat, Rise Against, The Pretty Reckless, Airbourne, The Darkness, Funeral For A Friend, Creeper, Boston Manor, Trash Boat, Holding Absence and many more.
This week also saw Y Not Festival reveal their second wave of acts including Thursday headliners The Kooks!
Also added this week were Jake Bugg, The Hunna, We Are Scientists, Blood Red Shoes, The Mysterines, Noisy, Daytime TV, MarthaGunn and more.
They’ll join the likes of Stereophonics, Manic Street Preachers, Nothing But Thieves, Levellers, Pale Waves, Dinosaur Pile-Up, Black Honey, Yard Act, The Futureheads, Dream Wife, Beans On Toast, Lauran Hibberd, REWS and many more.
Nottingham’s Splendour Festival this week revealed the event will stretch to two days this year with acts including Richard Ashcroft, Supergrass, Razorlight, The Magic Numbers, Ocean Colour Scene and Happy Mondays.
Bowling For Soup debut ‘I Wanna Be Brad Pitt’ and announce new album
Another band releasing new music this week was Bowling For Soup, who returned with new single ‘I Wanna Be Brad Pitt’.
That’s not it though, as the band also revealed that new album ‘Pop Drunk Snot Bread’ will arrive April 22nd!
Listen to the single above, and pre-order your album here.
Fatherson debut ‘Better Friend’
Fatherson continue to build towards new album, ‘Normal Fears’, which arrives April 1st with new single, ‘Better Friend’.
Speaking on the single, frontman Ross Leighton says, “”Better friend is about losing touch with people when you’re growing up and wishing you were better at staying in touch. Sometimes life gets in the way, but if the last few years has taught me anything life is better with the people you love.
It’s an anthem about friendship and an apology for letting it slip. It was the first song that I wrote for Normal Fears in my old bedroom in Kilmarnock and it really felt like the first normal fear I had going into the record. It became this reference point for melody and groove that the rest of the record built on.
I think everybody has felt a bit out of sorts before and gotten themselves into a space where they lose touch with people that are close to them. This song for me is a reminder to just get back in touch and start to rebuild. I love it!”
Listen to the track above and pre-order your album here.
North London singer/songwriter Louis Dunford shares brand new single ‘The Angel’ from his forthcoming second EP ‘The Popham’.
Speaking about the track Louis says: ‘I wrote this song about my home town. Anyone who’s lived in North London as long as I have will recognise the people and the places I’m talking about in the lyrics. Some that are still here and some that are not. It’s my family and friends favourite song I’ve ever written. Everyone’s London is different. I tried my best to capture ours’ .
‘GIVE IT TO ME’ – CLASSLESS ACT
Los Angeles rockers Classless Act will be joining huge tours with both Dorothy and the Motley Crue/Def Leppard/Poison/Joan Jett Stadium US Tour on their schedule. Check out recent single ‘Give It To Me’ on our Playlist.
‘IT’S ART’ – BLACKGOLD
Described as masked misfits bringing nu-metal vibes, the mysterious Blackgold emerged from the shadows this week with debut single, ‘It’s Art’.
Check out all tracks on our ‘Discover’ New Music Playlist’, and remember to also check out our ‘Discover’ New Music Podcast wherever you listen to or watch your Podcasts. We have multiple Episodes coming this week and just talked with recent Playlisted acts Youth Illusion and Scruffy Bear!
2020 was a year that we all wish we could forget. Could 2021 be any better? Well, it started off just as the previous year ended; with the live music industry on its knees. Lockdown restrictions still ruled out any live in person shows, with even socially distanced shows initially outlawed.
Come late spring, things began to look up and a number of “test” events were planned. We were lucky enough to attend the Pilot Download Festival and the euphoria of being amongst fellow music fans in a field can’t truly be put into words. Things were looking up!
Live music would eventually make a full return but sadly as we write this The Year In Review 2021 feature, the sector is once again holding its breath waiting for the Government to take action. Alas, true normality may still be a long way off, but for a few months this year we got to feel alive again.
That alone elevates 2021 above 2020, but there is plenty more to unpack. We recently undertook our now annual countdown of our top albums of the year over on our social media. 2021 was a truly exceptional year in terms of album quality. Those musicians kept in lockdown last year certainly found their creativity and compiling a list of the top 50 albums of the year was highly competitive.
In our The Year In Review 2021 article, we will be revealing our end of year award winners. As with last year we will announce our Album of the Year, Single of the Year, Artist of the Year, Gig of the Year and Festival of the Year.
This year however we have an additional award to hand out. 2021 was a big year for Full Pelt Music, our first full year in existence. We’ve grown and we’ve enhanced our focus on new music. We launched initially our ‘Discover’ New Music Playlist on Spotify through which we highlight the best up and coming artists.
We also launched not one but two Podcasts this year, including the accompanying ‘Discover’ New Music Podcast where we truly shine the spotlight on your new favourite acts. As such, this year we will also be awarding the ‘Discover’ New Artist of the Year award!
Before we get to those awards though, let’s run you through a few of our highlights this year. First of all, as mentioned we also launched The Full Pelt Music Podcast this year. Fittingly our inaugural guest was Frank Turner, the winner of both our Gig of the Year and Artist of the Year awards in our 2020 Year In Review.
Across the Podcasts this year we’ve had the pleasure to talk with Press To Meco, Beans On Toast, Miss Vincent, Planet Fatale, Mercutio, Light By The Sea, Freddie and the Fabs, The Damned Few, Project Renegade, Icarus and Smoke! Be sure to check out these conversations, and also to Subscribe on Youtube or wherever you listen to your Podcasts. After all, we will have plenty more for you to enjoy in 2022.
The Music Industry has seized on the opportunity to entertain this year both live and on record. We’ve reviewed 66 albums, 2 festivals and 27 gigs in 2021 as fans have been treated to incredible releases and some truly stunning live shows. Again, perhaps the enforced break has allowed creativity to breed innovation.
So with that in mind, let’s work through those award catagories!
Album of the Year
As we’ve already referenced, the pure quality of releases this year made compiling our Top 50 Album of the Year List very tricky. It was hard work but we did it, and you can read the full list here.
The quality is demonstrated best by last year’s winners IDLES only reaching a still respectable number 7. The winner however had to be ‘Blue Weekend’ from the incredible Wolf Alice who continue to go from strength to strength. After three stunning albums, there is no ceiling for this band and we can’t wait to catch songs from the album live in 2022.
‘Blue Weekend’ by Wolf Alice
‘Written & Directed’ by Black Honey, ‘Typhoons’ by Royal Blood, ‘Seize the Power’ by Yonaka and ‘Transmute’ by Press To MECO
2020 – ‘Ultra Mono’ by IDLES
Single of the Year
We move on now to our award for the Single or Song of the Year. This year has again seen us locked down for considerable amounts of time and many will have sought solace in Playlists such as our Spotify Hot List.
In selecting our track of the year we considered which songs we’ve come back to time and time again, which songs remain as fresh now as they did on first listen and what songs simply just resonate on a different level.
Our winner is an incredible track from the fantastic album ‘Transmute’ from Press To MECO. ‘A Test Of Our Resolve’ ticks all of the criteria and also sounds absolutely massive live.
‘A Test Of Our Resolve’ by Press To MECO
‘My Town’ by Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes, ‘Afterlife’ by Holding Absence, ‘Midnight’ by Creeper and ‘Haven’t Been Doing So Well’ by Frank Turner
2020 – ‘Obey’ by Bring Me The Horizon feat. Yungblud
Artist of the Year
Artist of the Year now and for this award we look for somebody who has had a huge, perhaps even career-defining year. Last year we gave the award to Frank Turner for his incredible work for the #SaveOurVenues campaign through his Independent Venue Love series.
This year our winners are a band that also dabbled with livestreams during that first lockdown. This year however has been a hugely important year for Biffy Clyro. A new album, ‘A Myth of the Happily Ever After’ came hot on the heels of last year’s ‘A Celebration of Endings’. It’s another quality album from a band that continue to deliver consistently great music.
The band also had a huge impact on the live music scene this year. Firstly, the band rode to the rescue by stepping in as late replacements for Queens of the Stone Age to once again headline Reading and Leeds Festivals.
Secondly, the band played huge outdoor shows in Cardiff, Glasgow and Margate to help signal the return of live music after around 16 months of lockdown. Highlights of both their Reading and Glasgow performances aired on the BBC.
Lastly, the band played a completely sold out and very intimate ‘Fingers Crossed’ Tour across the UK. Their shows this year giving fans an opportunity to witness songs from not one but two albums live for the first time.
Enter Shikari, Bring Me The Horizon, Creeper and Wolf Alice
2020 – Frank Turner
Festival of the Year
Festivals made a belated return from lockdown restrictions in late summer, although the majority of the usual seasons events were still cancelled. For our Festival of the Year however we can’t look anywhere other than the special event that laid the groundwork for all events to return, the Download Pilot Festival!
Back in June the Government test event was the first opportunity for music fans to camp in a field and rock out for three days. The camaraderie and atmosphere this situation created, combined with the uniquely intimate Download layout and line-up made for a once in a lifetime experience.
British bands took centre stage and delivered an incredible weekend of music; with bands and fans both desperate to experience live music again. Thanks to all involved we can hopefully experience a full fat Download Festival again this summer.
Last year’s winner of Gig of the Year was a socially distancing outdoor affair, this year however true live music returned! Picking a winner this year is difficult because the pent up frustration of lockdown on both musicians and fans vented fully across some amazing gigs.
We reviewed 27 of those shows this year and there were some very special moments amongst them. The winner however must go to Bring Me The Horizon who stormed the O2 Arena with You Me At Six and Nova Twins in tow.
The night was a massive middle finger to any remaining doubters and the band solidified themselves not just as arena fillers but as festival headline ready. Fitting therefore that they have recently been revealed as headliners for Reading & Leeds Festivals next year.
Creeper @ O2 Kentish Town Forum, Idlewild @ Electric Brixton, The Offspring @ Wembley Arena, Biffy Clyro @ O2 Kentish Town Forum, Vukovi @ Norwich Waterfront Studio and Royal Blood @ Norwich UEA
2020 – Frank Turner @ Nottingham Arboretum
‘Discover’ New Artist of the Year
Our final award is a new award for this year where we shift focus on to the future. Having launched our ‘Discover’ New Music Playlist and Podcast this year we wanted to honour an act that we have featured and for whom the future is bright.
With their debut album ‘A Funeral For Youth’ cracking our top 20 for the year, Miss Vincent take the inaugural ‘Discover’ New Artist of the Year award!
Planet Fatale, Dead Nature and Thumper
So, it hasn’t been a usual year again, in fact at times it has been just as hard as 2020. 2021 has however reminded us of what we were missing. Stunning new music, incredible live shows and a return to some normality (nobody say ‘new’ normal!), make 2021 a year that will live long in the memory for many reasons.
We hope you’ve enjoyed our The Year in Review 2021 feature and we wish you a very Happy New Year. Here’s hoping 2022 is a good one!