Editor’s Musings . . . The Gloucestershire Music Scene
So as you can see we’ve had a bit of a revamp and are now MAG or Music @ Glos. Although we’ve had a change of name and a swanky new logo nothing else has changed. We’re still providing you with the most comprehensive listings of music in Gloucestershire every month, alongside live reviews, interviews and local music news. There is LOADS going on this month we have an exclusive interview with Neville Staple from his Guildhall gig in December, a review of Cheltenham’s only alternative club night Judder! as well as a review of Swift Manouver at The 2pigs. The listings for February are bursting at the seams so you have no excuse to go out and enjoy the best music the county has to offer. Look out in next month’s issue for a review of Los Campesinos! NME Award’s warm up show at The Guildhall and lots more musical mayhem in the county. Amelia x P.S. Don’t forget to check out what local folk punk supremo Jim Lockey is listening to in our Playlist Feature!
There is so much going on this month in Gloucestershire. From Prodigy tributes to Reggae and Ska the county has something on offer for everybody in February. Gloucester sees Los Campesinos! Play their warm up show for the NME Awards the day before at The Guildhall. Indie pop sensations The Feeling have sold th out their show at the Guildhall on the 15 and later in the month 2 tone-ska veterans The Beat are to play a oneoff intimate gig at the venue. Not forgetting the Big Bang Festival featuring the best in local bands headlined by Orchid Fever (more information on this can be found in the listings). Gloucester’s not the only place jam packed with good music this month! Cheltenham’s Frog & Fiddle plays host to The Detached (check out the review in next month’s issue) brought to you by Simatik Promotions and resident promoter Gotherini Girl Promotions has The Flashguns playing. As always the 2pigs has a whole host of great bands playing including Reign of Fury and Gagreflex. Stroud Subscription Rooms is joined by Elvis this month in the form of Dolly Mixture Production’s ‘Aloha 2011’ Elvis tribute. Stroud’s Art Centre The Space has original new wave band The Blockheads playing. Next month is just as exciting. Along with Race Week and St Patrick’s day The Chip Shop Boys and Alabama 3 will be visiting The Guildhall. Remember more information on all gigs in the county can be found on the listings pages.
MAG is now also available www.admusicglos.wordpress.com We Need You! We are always looking for news and reviews for MAG from lovely people like you! Being a non-profit initiative we don’t pay but can get you into gigs and publish your work. Please contact Amelia if you want to contribute anything to this fanzine here: email@example.com
Febraury sees the start of our new resident columnist Emily Johnson talking about local bands. This month it’s about Me!Me!Me? Emily Johnson’s Local Music At the 2 pigs Cheltenham on the 12th of February Me!Me!Me? (note the punctuation!) are releasing their second EP "K*I*S*S*I*N*G" on Matchfactory Records but who are they and what do they sound like!? Me!Me!Me? hail from Cheltenham and Gloucester, they consist of Vik on Guitar, Joe on Drums and Alex on Bass and have been working together for two years. I’ve been sent a few tracks and I must admit I’m enjoying it a lot! As the drums get beaten to a pulp and the guitarist does his best impression of Thurston Moore attacking a guitar I cant help thinking that these guys are completely out of place within the local music scene, they have raw indie, grunge sound that Fugazi would be proud of and its a welcome change to the majority of music out there at the moment both local and mainstream. The way i see it, there is two different types of people that will enjoy the music of Me!Me!Me? One being, fans of Queens of the Stone age, Eagle of Death Metal etc, and the other if your a nostalgic grunge fan in the wrong era like myself. Either way this band are sure to make waves, I haven't had the chance to see them live yet but I get the vibe that they would tear up a stage! They will be at the Gloucester Guildhall on the 19th of Feb and I would defiantly recommend checking them out. Me!Me!Me? are Vik Pountney -Guitar and vocals Joe Green on Drums Alex Voss - Bass Guitar And their EP K*I*S*S*I*N*G is out on the 12th of February.
BBC Gloucestershire Introducing… is the show for your new music. Every Saturday from 5:30pm on BBC Radio Gloucestershire, you can hear the tastiest new cuts of unsigned music from across the county. We might have only been on-air since the beginning of October, but the response has been fantastic with shed loads of you uploading your tracks at bbc.co.uk/introducing – keep em comin’! Catch Paul Moss presenting BBC Gloucestershire Introducing... every Saturday from 5:30pm to hear the tastiest cuts from the county's up and coming artists. The 30 minute show also includes interviews with the people behind the music and a gig guide for who to see play live, and where.
Paul Moss presents ‘BBC Gloucestershire Introducing…’ every Saturday from 5:30pm on BBC Radio Gloucestershire 104.7, 95, 95.8 FM, 1413 AM and on the BBC iPlayer
And now a brief Cheltenham’s MND . . .
Swift Manouver, Another Option & Slunk Monkey
Words: Dan Gutteridge Picture: Another Option th
On Saturday 15 January AAR Label put on a night of exciting new ‘Gloucestershireian’ music with a slice of American indie sandwiched in between. st
And welcome to the newly branded Music @ Gloucestershire (MAG – clever, ey?) We’re now online and it’s all very pretty and we’ve got a new website coming soon – not bad for a little eight page black and white fanzine that’s only been going a year… The start of the year is always a bit slow when it comes to music – but having seen the Echoes win the surprisingly excellent “Stars In Their Eyes” at the Frog & Fiddle last weekend (and how it was seemingly rammed from the outset) I’m starting to think this town really has changed in the last three years or so. This month sees the Cheltenham Folk Festival kick off again and another highlight I anticipate would be Zen Elephant making an appearance at Badlands – there are plenty of events I could run my proverbial verbal highlighter over but the best thing to do would be to look through the listings yourself and try and get out to as much as you can! Right – back to planning more musical mischief… AL x
The County’s next Festival is . . .
11th-13th February 2011 at Cheltenham Town Hall. Tickets available from the Box Office. More details can be found at www.cheltenhamtownhall.org.uk
1 band, local four piece indie alternative outfit, Slunk Monkey launched straight into their set as the clock had barely struck 7:30. Front man Tom Love was so full of energy anyone would have thought he’d downed a few dozen cans of red bull before taking to stage, bouncing up and down, left and right. The small crowd gathered in front of the stage duly responded to the on stage vigour and broke out several mosh pits as the songs went on. They were a good solid guitar band, maybe their sound was not as rounded and complete as a more established or more experienced band, but they did put on a great opening show on for the early goers and set the night up brilliantly. nd
2 band Another Option, the American filling in this local music sandwich entered the stage with the venue packing out nicely. Another 4 piece alternative pop rock guitar band. As they opened their set there were obvious comparisons to Kings of Leon and Fall out Boy and they threatened to be your usual heard it all before run of the mill band. However after the first few catchy songs it was clear they were a little bit more special. With a pounding bass drum and captivating riff’s you couldn’t but help smile and like this cheeky indie group. There was audience interaction throughout the set, even stopping half way through to partake in a chant of “ole ole ole”. It was clear they were here for an awesome time and there energy was rubbing off on the now half full 2 Pigs. I have a feeling we may be seeing Another Option back in Cheltenham some time soon. The last band in our U.S.A Gloucestershire sandwich was Gloucester based Swift Manouver. They launched straight into their opening song and had people dancing away. Predominantly a Ska band with a clear Reggae and Indie influence, they continued to put a very large grin on my face. I was captivated by the largely rocky style vocals and how they fitted in perfectly with the rest of the band. There was a strong resemblance to Less Than Jake and Reel Big Fish and Swift Manouver pulled me in, in the same way as these two bands do, and that’s with incredibly catchy singalong tunes. My highlight of the night were the songs “David and Goliath” and “Officer” both songs had me dancing and singing the lyrics as if I’d had the songs on my I Pod for years. Their ability to pull you in and focus only on them at their shows, mixed with their great song writing ability can only mean that great things are just around the corner. If you ever get the chance to catch Swift Manouver live don’t turn it down.
An exclusive Neville Staple Interview from his recent gig at the Gloucester Guildhall. Interviewer: Zoe Harris Picture: Liam Scriven ZOE: SO HOW DO YOU THINK THE SHOW WENT TONIGHT? NEVILLE: I think it went pretty well to be honest, if I’m going to be honest with you. I enjoyed it ZOE: SO WHERE DID YOU INTEREST IN MUSIC START? NEVILLE: My interest in music started when I was young because my cousin had a sound system and he was like a DJ, and I used to go round with him. That’s where I started. ZOE: AND WHO WOULD YOU SAY YOUR INFLUENCES ARE? NEVILLE: My influences are The Motels, The Old Time Reggae Skatalites, Demond Dekker, going way back like that, Delroy Wilson. Honestly all the old reggaes. ZOE: YOU’VE BEEN IN THE INDUSTRY A LONG TIME NEVILLE: You trying to say I’m old? You trying to say I’m an old geeza? ZOE: NO! HOW WOULD YOU SAY TOURING HAS CHANGED? NEVILLE: It’s not as fun as it used to be, its business now. Before it was fun but now it’s all business. That’s how I see it. ZOE: DO YOU STILL ENJOY IT? NEVILLE: I love it when I do it on my own, like here. Because if I’m doing it like The Specials, it gets to corporate but if I do it on my own it’s more fun ZOE: YOU GET TO RELAX MORE? NEVILLE: Yes, and I tend to enjoy it more, I enjoy being on stage all the time but when I’m on my own I enjoy it more, I can stop the band and start it at any time but with The Specials you have to do three and a half minute songs and that’s it, with me I can stretch it and change it about. ZOE: HOW DOES THE SKA SCENE DIFFER COUNTRY TO COUNTRY, OR DOESN’T IT? NEVILLE: It does, it really does. Everybody has got their own interpretation of it. In England, it is more on the Jamaican Reggae but when you go to different countries it’s faster and it’s all different wave of Ska. It’s random now. ZOE: HOW DOES PERFORMING AS A SOLO ARTIST COMPARE TO BEING IN THE SPECIALS? NEVILLE: I prefer being a solo artist more. ZOE: YOU’VE COLLABERATED WITH MANY ARTISTS OVER THE YEARS, IS THERE ANY WHICH YOU HAVE ENJOYED WORKING WITH THE BEST? NEVILLE: No, there are some I don’t ever remember. Young artists and others say “Nev, can you do this on my track, bla bla, bla”. I’ve done so many. I’m not being a stuck up git. ZOE: YOU HAVE AN AMAZING MUSIC HISTORY, IS THERE ANY ADVICE YOU COULD GIVE TO UP AND COMING ARTISTS? NEVILLE: Well no, if you were asking me that thirty years ago I would have answered it. But nowadays, it’s just completely different. Before, you could get a record deal and they would give you two goes, two singles on an album, nowadays they don’t even give you that. Do they have record companies anymore? That’s what I mean, nowadays there no record companies and that’s what used to help us out when we were youngers many years ago but nowadays it’s too difficult. It’s all download stuff and I am not good at computers. ZOE: ARE THERE ANY UP AND COMING ARTISTS THAT YOU LIKE THE LOOK OF? NEVILLE: I like the song by Will Smiths daughter. ZOE: I WHIP MY HAIR? NEVILLE: Yes, Someone said have a listen to this and it was just great and it was this little girl. Honest to god stuff like that. Neville Staple will be performing at this year’s Wychwood Festival, more details can be found at www.wychwoodfestival.com
This month’s Playlist is courtesy of the county’s favourite folk punk supremo Jim Lockey: The Echoes - Exes and Whys Despite these guys being very close friends of ours this isn’t a bias choice, its by far the best piece of British pop punk I’ve heard in years, and I think it'll help the band to develop on all their past successes. It’s just so catchy I always find myself singing it to myself and the harmonies are spot on. I love the guys energy on stage too. Great band. The Vaccines - Post Break Up Sex These guys are having so much written about them at the moment, and I’m not usually one for 'hype' bands but unlike the others these guys back it up, it also helps that I was a big fan of Jay Jay Pistolet who now fronts the vaccines. This song is awesome, reminds me of 80's guitar bands which is never a bad thing in my book, but i could have chosen any of the songs off their debut record as an example of how good they are. Well deserved hype! Midnight Mile - Timber Timber Our label mates MM have upped their game recently, I don’t know how but they get better every week and this song in particular is a stand out for me, shuffling further away from their old sound that gave them their name, its a sweet little pop tune with a great groove, its guaranteed to get people moving at the shows. This song stands up as a hit, i cant wait to get my hands on their new E.P. and listen to this song all day and night for at least 3 months... Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeros - Home This ones a little older, about two years or so but I really got back into it recently, I don’t really know a lot about this band or their records, or how i came across this song but its been on my iTunes for ages. i find it very uplifting and the sounds they create remind me of films of the ol' west and Steinbeck novels, always a good thing. Crystal Castles & Robert Smith - Not In Love I love this band, i rather shamefully saw them play at a skins party in Birmingham a few years back and I’ve been hooked ever since, plus everything Robert Smith touches is gold, the chorus in this song is massive. If all dance music was this good I’d probably not be in a band and would be trying my hand at DJ'ing, luckily most of its rubbish, so apart from the odd crystal castles song I’ll stick to melancholic folk songs. Ben Marwood - They Will Float Your Body Out To Sea This is one of the songs off my friend Ben's debut album (out 31st Jan - shamless plug!). Lyric is a massive part of music for me, without good content i lose interest in certain songs, Ben's a bit of a wizard with words, and this ones no exception. It's incredible, and I’m very proud of him for writing such an impressive album, even if it did take him ages to finally do one.
This Month’s Club Night Review is for Judder! at the 2pigs in Cheltenham. Words: Phil Davies Picture: Judder! JUDDER! Is the brainchild of resident DJ Lee Chaos and organisational mastermind Charlie AntiGirl. Started back in 2003, JUDDER! is two floors of music and entertainment, and is graced with guest DJ’s every month. Martin Atkins (Killing Joke/Public Image Ltd), Adam Lab4, and Paul Wolinski (65 Days of static) are to name but a few of the many guest DJ’s JUDDER! has seen over the years. This relentless support and fresh input has helped JUDDER! Move from strength to strength, and is now recognised as the longest running alternative club night in Cheltenham. Set during every second Friday of the month, its success has only been complemented by its consistently refreshing attitude for a night out. Themes are unique to each and every night, and have seen some truly inspired choices. From Sega Vs Nintendo, to Steam punk, to pirates, or post apocalyptic JUDDER! , there really is something new to look forward to each time. The JUDDER! Halloween special never fails to disappoint. Taking the madness up another level, with the whole venue given that warped madness look that’s become so admired and entertainment from burlesque to stilt walkers and fire performers. It’s an evening of great music, outfits and plenty of entertainment (plus sweets). If you’re looking for something just a little bit different from a normal Friday night, perhaps try out a JUDDER! Then just sit back, relax and just let yourself elope into a night of fucked up music, for fucked up people." www.judder.org
Music according to Jen Duffy. Column number two, and I have so many ideas that I would love to write about, but I have managed to narrow it down to one. BBC Introducing. If anyone hasn’t heard of BBC Introducing or know what it is, then you really need to catch up. It’s one of the best ways that I have seen the music industry attempt to not only get in contact with unsigned acts from around the whole of the UK, but to showcase their exceptional talent. They also give them a chance to play some of the countries’ biggest festivals, which is a massive deal to bands that are genuinely passionate about their music. In particular, BBC Gloucestershire Introducing. I’ve listened to the show a number of times and I have no idea why but I’m always surprised at the amount of amazing bands/artists that I hear. It’s crazy to think that these acts are unsigned and their music isn’t being heard as much as it is deserved to. Bands such as Swift Manouver, Yours and The Roving Crows have all uploaded music on to the website and have been played out on the BBC Introducing show; it is literally as simple as that. If you’re in a band or are a solo artist and want to get noticed, upload your music! It is an amazing way to get your music out there to a different audience and to make yourselves known in the county. I cannot stress how much this can benefit bands/artists in so many ways, and it’s something I hope to be involved in the future. You can listen to BBC Gloucestershire Introducing every Saturday from 5:30 on BBC Radio Gloucestershire. Want to contribute? Very much like this section states every month, we like listings, reviews, editorial, previews, pictures, art, cartoons and would like to fill these pages with things you care about. We‘d love to hear about anything to do with live music in the county really and can help with anything from promoting you here to getting you reviewed, played on student and local radio, putting you in touch with venues, musicians and artists across the county and just about anything else you can think of! Want to advertise? Put your gig posters in with the MAG for distribution? Ask what our favourite kind of ham is? You can contact Amelia – firstname.lastname@example.org AD Music Editor Amelia Scognamiglio | PR/Listings Amelia Scognamiglio | Cover Design Dan Cooper | Listings Design Robbie Pert | Listings Contributor Ollie West | Staff Writer Jenny Duffy | Staff Writer Jack Higgins | Staff Writer Dan Gutteridge| Staff Writer Emily Johnson | Thanks to all the people who contributed to issue 1 of MAG, special thanks (again) goes to Nicky Hughes @ The University of Gloucestershire for organising the funding and production of this work.| All work remains property of the original owner, used with permission. Reproduction in whole or any part (especially the listings) of this fanzine would be awesome as it’s great to spread the word people, just make sure you credit the fanzine : )