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October 2013

www.brumnotes.com music and lifestyle for the west midlands

October 2013

free

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Thurs 17th Oct

Rudimental Thurs 17th Oct • £20 adv

Half Man Half Biscuit Sat 19th Oct • £20 adv / £50 VIP 10.30pm-3.30am • £4 adv Over 18s only - Proof of age required

Thurs 31st Oct • £4 adv

10.30pm-3.30am • over 18s only

Propaganda Halloween Spooktacular

Bowling For Soup Bid Farewell Tour 2013 + Patent Pending

Sat 19th Oct • £14.50 adv

Zedd + Dannic

Sun 20th Oct • £26.50 adv

Weds 13th Nov • £27.50 adv 6.30pm - 11pm

Alice In Chains

The Complete Stone Roses

Thurs 14th Nov • £15 adv

Tues 26th Nov • £22.50 adv

Escape The Fate & Chiodos

Weds 27th Nov

The Lumineers

6.30pm - 11pm

Disclosure

The Road to Warped Tour + The Color Morale + Cytota

Sat 30th Nov • £28.50 / £50 VIP

Howard Jones

Sat 16th Nov • £20 adv

Editors

30th Anniversary Concert

Sat 30th Nov • £12 adv

Sat 16th Nov • £9 adv

+ The Selecter + Erica Nockalls

[spunge]

Kodaline DJ Set @ Propaganda

Weds 23rd Oct

Tues 19th Nov • £22.50 adv

London Grammar

Scouting For Girls

Tues 1st Oct • £15 adv

Fri 25th Oct • £9.50 adv

Weds 20th Nov • £8.50 adv

6pm - 10pm

+ The Drowning Men

Clean Bandit

The Temperance Movement

Fri 4th Oct • £15 adv

Sat 26th Oct • £22.50 adv

Thurs 21st Nov • £20 adv (seated show)

Diamond Head & Uli Jon Roth

Sat 26th Oct

10.30pm - 3am • over 18s only

The Airborne Toxic Event 6pm - 10pm

+ The Mighty Wraith

Sun 6th Oct • £15 adv 6pm - 11pm

Impericon Never Say Die! Tour ft. Emmure

+ Carnifex, I Killed The Prom Queen, Betraying The Martyrs, Hundredth, Northlane, Hand of Mercy

Tues 8th Oct • £10 adv

Black Spiders

+ Hawk Eyes + Baby Godzilla

Weds 9th Oct • £15 adv

The Quireboys + Bonafide + Bad Touch

Travis

Rescheduled show • original tickets valid

The Feeling + Yellowire Sun 27th Oct • £19.50 adv

The Queen Extravanganza Mon 28th Oct Tues 29th Oct

Jake Bugg

Tues 3rd Dec • £12 adv

ft. Ned’s Atomic Dustbin + Cud + Republica + DJ set from Steve Lamacq

FOR COMPLETE LISTINGS PLEASE CHECK OUR WEBSITE

Thurs 31st Oct • £26.50 adv

Suede + Teleman

Fri 1st Nov • £12.50 adv 6.30pm - 10pm

36crazyfists

+ Armed For Apocalypse + Thera

Tues 1st Oct • £7 adv

Sun 20th Oct • £5 adv

Johnny Get The Gun

Heights

Sat 2nd Nov • £20 adv

Mon 14th Oct • £23 adv

Babyshambles

Tues 15th Oct • £19 adv

Lawson

The Everywhere We Go Tour + Paighton + Room 94 + Andreas Moe

Weds 16th Oct • £15 adv

Volbeat + Iced Earth

Electric Six + Only The Good

Nedstock 2013

+ Chip Daddy

Presents Bugsy Malone in Down Town Birmingham City

+ I See Stars + DayShell

Sat 23rd Nov • £20 adv

Bring Me The Horizon

MC Trigga’s Birthday Bash 2013

The Word Alive

+ Middle Class Rut + American Fangs

Thurs 10th Oct • £12 adv

9pm - 5am • over 18s only

Mon 2nd Dec • £10 adv

Papa Roach

+ Attention Thieves + Beyond Seven Signs + Fans of Faye

Sat 12th Oct • £22.50 adv

Flux Pavilion + Datsik

+ Dan Croll

Passenger + Stu Larsen

+ The Summer Set + Hands Like Houses + The Getaway Plan

Mon 2nd Dec • £14.50 adv

Tues 3rd Dec • £20 adv

Weds 2nd Oct • £6 adv

Sleeping With Sirens

The Doors Alive

Imagine Dragons

Sat 2nd Nov • £17.50 adv

6pm - 10pm

Sun 1st Dec • £11 adv

6pm - 10pm

Fri 1st Nov • £17.50 adv

Fri 11th Oct • £14 adv

20th Year Celebrations 1993-2013

Fri 22nd Nov

Thurs 10th Oct • £13 adv

Goldie Lookin Chain

My Life Story

Stephen Lynch Live

+ Sirens

6.30pm - 11pm

Rescheduled show & time • original tickets valid 7pm - 11pm

+ Ghost

Public Image Ltd

Fri 8th Nov • £4 adv

Sat 23rd Nov • £11 adv

6.30pm - 10pm 7pm - 11pm

+ Pierce The Veil + Sights & Sounds 6.30pm - 11pm

Peter Hook and the Light Performing New Order’s “Movement” & “Power, Corruption and Lies” Live

Sun 3rd Nov

Evarose

Fri 4th Oct • £7 adv 6pm - 10pm

Sat 5th Oct • £5 adv

+ Viva La Revolution + All Thought Out

Salvation

+ Fury + Fortress + Bullitstorm + Zombie Extras

Mon 4th Nov • £17.50 adv

“Rapture” Tour

Romeo’s Daughter Mon 7th Oct • £8 adv

Ben Montague

The Boomtown Rats

+ Kristyna Myles

Thurs 7th Nov • £10.50 adv

6pm - 10pm

Deep Vally Sun 10th Nov

Jake Bugg Tues 12th Nov • £18.50 adv

Defenders of the Faith ft. Amon Amarth

Voodoo Six & Sacred Mother Tongue Fri 25th Oct • £7 adv

Sun 6th Oct • £15 adv

Weds 6th Nov • £24 adv

Thurs 24th Oct • £10 adv

Foxes

Bastille

The Toy Dolls

6.30pm - 10.30pm

Weds 16th Oct • £6 adv

The Last Carnival Sat 19th Oct • £10 adv 8pm - 1am • Over 18s only

Quadrophenia Night

(A tribute to the iconic film) ft. The Atlantics (Live) + DJ Drew Stansall + The Coopers

6.30pm-10pm Rescheduled • original tickets valid

Orange

Sat 26th Oct • £10 adv

The Lancashire Hotpots ‘Crust for Life’ Tour + Biscuithead and the Biscuit Badgers

Sun 27th Oct • £6 adv 6pm - 10pm

The Famous Class Fri 1st Nov • £7 adv 6pm - 10pm

Kobra & The Lotus + Santa Cruz

Sat 2nd Nov • £10 adv

UK Foo Fighters

Tues 5th Nov • £8.50 adv / £25 VIP 6pm - 10pm

Cover Drive Weds 6th Nov • £10 adv

Rescheduled • original tickets valid

Young Knives Fri 8th Nov • £12 adv 6.30pm - 10pm

Absolute Bowie Sat 9th Nov • £5 adv

Under Blackened Skies + Malandra + Sirens + Husk + Urgize

Tues 12th Nov • £7 adv

Natives

Thurs 21st Nov • £10 adv

Go Kart Mozart Sun 24th Nov • £9 adv

Akala

Tues 10th Dec • £6 adv

Under The Influence

Fri 13th Dec • £10 adv 6.30pm - 10pm

The No.1 Foo Fighters Tribute

U.K. Subs

Mon 4th Nov • £9 adv

Mon 23rd Dec • £10 adv

Robbie Boyd

Dionne Bromfield

16-18 Horsefair, Bristol St, Birmingham, B1 1DB 2

Doors 7.00pm unless stated • Venue box office opening hours: Mon-Fri 12pm-4pm, Sat 11am-4pm • No booking fee on cash transactions Brum Notes Magazine ticketweb.co.uk • seetickets.com • gigantic.com • ticketmaster.co.uk


PRESENTS

PLUS GUESTS

TUESDAY 26 NOVEMBER

BIRMINGHAM O2 ACADEMY

TICKETS FROM: KILILIVE.COM / SEETICKETS.COM DEBUT ALBUM ‘THE LUMINEERS’ OUT NOW ON DECCA RECORDS

THELUMINEERS.COM FB.COM/THELUMINEERS @THELUMINEERS

A KILILIVE.COM PRESENTATION BY ARRANGEMENT WITH ATC LIVE

THURSDAY 17 OCTOBER WOLVERHAMPTON WULFRUN HALL

TICKETS AVAILABLE AT: KILILIVE.COM / 0844 871 88 03 FACEBOOK.COM/OHDAUGHTER

October 2013

T I C K E T S AVA I L A B L E AT K I L I L I V E . C O M

THE DEBUT ALBUM ‘IF YOU LEAVE’ OUT NOW

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Brum Notes Magazine


CONTENTS

Layers live at the O2 Academy 3. Read the review on P39. Photo by Ian Dunn. Brum Notes Magazine Unit 12 The Bond 180-182 Fazeley Street Digbeth Birmingham B5 5SE info@brumnotes.com 0121 224 7363 Advertising 0121 224 7363 advertising@brumnotes.com Distribution StickupMedia! 0121 224 7364 Editor: Chris Moriarty Contributors Words: Tom Pell, David Vincent, Amy Sumner, Guy Hirst, Daron Billings, Dan Cooper-Gavin, Mark Alex Preston, Abigail Edge, Megan Wooldridge, Edward Ling New Music Editor: Amy Sumner Food & Drink Editor: Daron Billings Pictures: Lee Allen, Ian Dunn, Andy Watson/Drw-Images, Sinéad O’Callaghan, Andy Hughes, Wayne Fox Style editor: Jade Sukiya jade@brumnotes.com Design: Adam Williams, Andy Aitken, Charlotte Audrey Owen-Meehan, Henry Parker Connect Twitter: @BrumNotesMag Facebook: www.facebook.com/ BrumNotesMagazine Online: www.brumnotes.com

October 2013

Regulars News6-7 Fresh Talent 8-9 Live Reviews 38-39 Style40-41 Food & Drink 42-43 What’s On Guide 44-46 Music and Features Preview: Fierce Festival 10-11 Ghostpoet12-13 Lanterns on the Lake 14 Splashh16 Babyshambles18-19 Preview: Bring To Light 22-23 OxjamBrum Takeover Festival Guide 24-25 Suede26-27 Max Raptor 28 Student Special: Insider Guide to Brum31-36 All content © Brum Notes Magazine. Views expressed are those of the author, not necessarily Brum Notes Magazine. While all care has been taken to ensure the accuracy of content, Brum Notes Magazine will not be held liable for any errors or losses claimed to have been incurred by any errors. Advertising terms and conditions available on request. 5


new independent record store opens in digbeth Birmingham’s newest independent record store has opened its doors in the creative hotbed of Digbeth. Milque & Muhle is based in The Custard Factory, off Digbeth High Street, specialising in “alternative music for adventurous audiences”. The new store stocks alternative second-hand records as well as selected new releases and current rare underground vinyl, alongside cassettes and fanzines. The store launched at the end of September with a party at the nearby Muthers Recording Studio, with live sets from Female Smell, Black Veins and Ghold. The team behind the record store will also be organising music events across the city. Visit Milque & Muhle at The Custard Factory or visit www.facebook.com/milqueandmuhle for more information.

black history month celebrated at venues across birmingham

IN BRIEF

More than 60 events will take place across Birmingham throughout October to celebrate Black History Month. The annual month-long celebration will include talks, exhibitions, performances, music, tours, discussions, spoken word, fashion, and visits. Various events will also mark 50 years since Martin Luther King’s ‘I have a dream...’ speech. Among the highlights are a new exhibition from famed photographic agency Autograph ABP, Archive In Focus: Back In The Day, running until October 31 at The Drum in Aston. The collection spans more than 50 years which illustrate the different experiences and struggles faced by black and Asian migrants in their bid to settle in post-war Britain. The Great Wyrley Outrages, when a Mason Science College student was accused of attacking horses near the Staffordshire village, is the subject of a University of Birmingham exhibition entitled Roots Of The University (Oct 1-31), and a talk by playwright David Edgar (Oct 17, Barber Institute), who used the story for his stage play, Arthur And George. Other key events include appearances from former Black Panther party members JoNina Abron-Ervin and Lorenzo E. Ervin (The Drum, Oct 12; UoB, Oct 15), and an ‘urban sermon’ from writer, poet, performer and Peaky Blinders’ actor Benjamin Zephaniah (Birmingham Cathedral, Oct 9). Look out too for an exhibition of paintings by Birmingham-born artist Hurvin Anderson (until Nov 10, Ikon Gallery) and an appearance from legendary Jamaican harmony trio The Black Is Beautiful by Raphael Mighty Diamonds (Oct 19, The Institute). Albert, from the Autograph ABP collection For more details on Black History Month events visit www.the-drum.org.uk.

The Charlatans will headline a fundraising concert at London’s Royal Albert Hall, in memory of their late drummer Jon Brookes. The Midlands-raised musician, co-founder of Birmingham record label One Beat, passed away in August at the age of 44. The show on October 18 will raise funds for The Brain Tumour Charity. Birmingham’s Americana-fused alt-folk outfit Goodnight Lenin will play a one-off show at The Prince of Wales in Moseley on October 25. Tickets are £10adv. Film submissions are now being invited for Birmingham’s Flatpack Festival. The annual festival, celebrating film in all forms, returns from March 20 to 30, 2014. Successful submissions can win up to £1,000 and will be included in the 2014 festival programme. Birmingham’s annual Beer & Cider Festival returns this month. The CAMRAendorsed event runs from October 30 to November 2 at Second City Suite in Sherlock Street, on the edge of the city centre. Day tickets range from £3 to £5.

Moseley bar to relaunch as indie music venue Moseley bar The Cross will relaunch as an indie music venue this month, with a brand new live gig room being unveiled upstairs. It will reveal its new look and officially launch upstairs venue The Loft with a free entry gig on Friday, October 11, headlined by local cult heroes Misty’s Big Adventure playing live, while DJ Andy Hinton spins tunes in the bar downstairs. The live music will be programmed by promoters Catapult Club, run by Arthur Tapp, who this month also celebrates 24 years of putting on gigs in Birmingham. The new venture at The Cross will mark Catapult Club’s first return to live music in Moseley since the closure of the legendary Jug of Ale in 2008, which previously welcomed the likes of Editors, Ocean Colour Scene and Kasabian. The Cross will accommodate audiences of up to 160 in its live space, offering a brand new option for live music in the heart of the bohemian suburb. 6

Brum Notes Magazine


job opportunities

competition: win tickets to see steve mason live at the institute Acclaimed indie star Steve Mason heads to Birmingham next month as part of a full UK tour. The musician, who originally rose to prominence as frontman of The Beta Band, has announced a series of dates following the release of his second solo album earlier this year, the critically acclaimed Monkey Minds In The Devil’s Time. We’ve got a pair of tickets to give away for his show at The Institute in Birmingham on November 5, along with a copy of the album. To be in with a chance of winning, tell us the name of Steve Mason’s forthcoming single, due out on Domino on November 4. Send your answers, with your name and age, to competitions@brumnotes.com by October 31.

is recruiting

for a range of paid editorial positions. If you are interested in joining Birmingham’s best read music and lifestyle monthly and helping shape the future direction of the magazine online and in print then visit www.brumnotes.com/jobs.

full line-up revealed for alternative music festival in kings heath

October 2013

TICKETS wearefierce.org

Cakes Da Killa Eat My Noise RoxXxan Quilla Constance Short films from Kino10

1 NIGHT 2 PARTIES Alternative hip-hop, grimy beats, electro-glitchy-pop, DJs, per formance and short films. AE Harris 20:00 - 23:00 / Club PST 23:00 - LATE £15 / £12 adv for both Club Fierce: Eat My Noise & XXX

15th Anniversary

˛

SAT 5 OC T CLUB FIERCE XXX / EAT MY NOISE

Frankie & The Heartstrings

The full line-up has now been revealed for a new boutique music festival taking place across two days in Birmingham next month. All Years Leaving, curated by new music promoters This Is Trmw, will take place on November 15 and 16 at the Hare & Hounds in Kings Heath. Headlining will be offbeat indie pop outfit Dutch Uncles on the Friday night, while Saturday will see Birmingham’s own lo-fi cult heroes Distophia making a welcome return. Joining Dutch Uncles on the Friday will be Frankie & The Heartstrings, Boat To Row, Kins and Hoopla Blue, while Saturday’s line-up will also boast Yuck, Sky Larkin, His Clancyness, Wide Eyed, Best Friends and Victories At Sea. Other attractions will include visuals and art installations, DJs and a pop-up Soul Food Project restaurant. Weekend tickets have now sold out but day tickets priced £15 are available from www.theticketsellers.co.uk.

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Words by Tom Pell, Guy Hirst, David Vincent and Amy Sumner

Sean Stewart Amidst all this grungy, baggy-shirted, tie-dyed furore of a modern day music scene, meet Stourbridge based folkpop troubadour Sean Stewart. He’s just released the Americana infused Only Truths alongside the moody, sultry You, choosing to chuck the tracks straight onto iTunes, Spotify and his own website, rather than produce any hard copies. “I don’t own a single CD myself any more,” he admits, “I sold them all. You don’t need them, do you? I guess it’s a shame, but, when you’ve got no room, where are you going to put all your shoes? And all your other music stuff, like your harmonica braces? That’s not even a joke.” The tunes aren’t either. Melodic hooks-a-plenty swirl around

Johnny Kowalski & the Sexy Weirdos

www.seanstewart.co.uk Stewart’s delicate vocal on Only Truths, leaving it sounding like the soundtrack to Kerouac’s Sunday evenings on the backs of pickup trucks while he was on the road. Whereas You, the b-side, conjures 90s pop-soul and builds to soaring falsetto highs before a Weller-esque outro. “My attention span moves pretty quickly,” confesses Sean, “so it’s nice to just get a couple of songs out at a time and do it like that. If I write a couple of tracks now, by the time I’ve written enough for an album, I’d be bored of them. It’s nice to have the energy to write them, release them, and play them.” A launch gig for the tracks will be held at infamous Stourbridge local haunt Katie Fitzgerald’s, on October 3. And it’ll be free, so get the bus and get involved. Sean says: “It’ll be a big event on the day, and I’ll have my keyboard player - John Morgan on the organ - with me on the night as well. I hope that people see someone who’s got very hooky songs, and that they go away singing. I hope they can hear the potential for bigger things.” Sean Stewart is live at Katie Fitzgerald’s, Stourbridge, on October 3, and The Actress & Bishop, Birmingham, on October 6.

facebook.com/sexyweirdos Photo by Alice Morelli

“As soon as we played our first gig as Johnny Kowalski & the Sexy Weirdos I knew this band was going to work,” says frontman and founder Johnny Kowalski. “And the more I think about it, the more I love the name. I love the juxtaposition of opposites, like the Happy Mondays.” Since their formation in 2010 Johnny Kowalski & the Sexy Weirdos have toured the UK extensively, and have brought their extraordinary combination of klezmer, Balkan music and punk to audiences all across Europe, with the tour reaching as far as France, Germany, Belgium and the Czech Republic. “We owe what success we’ve had, if you can say we’ve had any success, to traditional   gypsy-folk and klezmer music. Thanks to those melodies and styles we’re able to play music that predates rock‘n’roll by hundreds of years,” Johnny continues. “If something’s survived for that long there’s a definite magic and timelessness to it. None of us have been brought up with that music in our heritage, so I believe we have to put our own original take on it, and that’s something I feel very strongly about.” The band are currently sinking their teeth into their second album, which is set to be recorded later this year. “There’s definitely a conscious effort to have a better sound quality this time round,” Johnny explains. “I want to add things that aren’t currently in our live shows 8

too, extra instruments and maybe some female vocals. A long-term goal of ours is to expand our ensemble, maybe with an accordion, I really want a clarinet.” They’ve got a European tour, UK festivals, and BBC Radio 6 Music airplay already under their belts in 2013, and for the Sexy Weirdos, there’s no end in sight. “We’ve played so many good shows, some big, some small, and we’ve got another European tour in October. We’re gonna keep on doing what we’ve been doing, label or not,” Johnny insists. Johnny Kowalski & The Sexy Weirdos are live at The Wagon & Horses, Digbeth, on October 18. Brum Notes Magazine


Joe Lycett

PREVIEW Birmingham Comedy Festival Birmingham’s annual comedy fest’ was set up way back in 2001, essentially to highlight the city’s great, grassroots comedy scene. Twelve years later, and although it attracts plenty of ‘name’ acts (this year features Russell Brand, Adam Hills, Robin Ince and Tony Law, amongst others), the festival has stayed true to its original aim by continuing to provide a platform for local talent.   The biggest of those is undoubtedly Hall Green’s charming Joe Lycett (Oct 10, The Glee Club). Fast becoming a familiar face on TV (Celebrity Juice, ...Buzzcocks etc) and on course to be the city’s biggest comedy export since Frank Skinner. If Joe Lycett Then You Should’ve Put A Ring On It is his debut UK headline tour show, and it’s a treat.   Elsewhere, Harriet Dyer, ably supported by Freddie Farrell (Oct 13, Kitchen Garden Cafe), show why they’re both making

October 2013

inroads on the national club circuit, while other notables include Aaron Twitchen (Oct 9, Old Joint Stock), Masai Graham (Oct 8, Mono Bar), and Lovdev Barpaga (Oct 10, City Tavern).   It’s also nice to see the University Of Birmingham’s Comedy Society, The Footnotes, making a rare appearance outside of Selly Oak (Oct 11, Six Eight Kafe). No doubt still flushed from their impressive run of 4 and 5-star reviews at this summer’s Edinburgh Fringe, from their 80-plus membership expect to see four Tickled Pig Regional Finalists (Jacob Lovick, Daniel Moroney, Ludo Cinelli and  Dory Wainwright), and an appearance from sketch troupe Everything But The Gravy. Birmingham Comedy Festival runs from October 4 to 13. For full listings visit www.bhamcomfest.co.uk.

THE PLAYLIST FF Korova

Oswin

The best new material from The second offering from dark psych Birmingham and beyond. outfit FF Korova has a sexy bassline and vocals Madchester would be proud of. Keep your eyes on these boys. soundcloud.com/ff-korova/oswin

apollo’s mob

Apple Towns

Now complete with a stunning video to boot, Apple Towns is a gorgeously intricate offering from the Northamptonshire duo dripping in classical folk. Catch Apollo’s Mob at this month’s Issue Launch Party. facebook.com/Apollosmob

germ

Soak

Title track from debut three-track EP, this is classic shoegaze dripping from top to tail in grunge. Download from Bandcamp or you can grab one of two coloured cassettes from the folk over at Birmingjams. wearegerm.bandcamp.com

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FESTIVAL PREVIEW:

Cassils vows to “unleash an assault” on the material under the cover of darkness, sporadically made visible thanks to bursts of light from the attendant flash photographer. The freeze-frames will be burned onto the retinas of the audience, creating enduring images of fleeting moments of struggle.

FIERCE 2013

The Birmingham Town Hall will serve as a suitably epic venue for SOUNDS LIKE CATASTROPHES (OCTOBER 5). German duo Eva Meyer-Keller and Sybille Müller have worked with six Brummie youngsters to explore the particular way in which children perceive and react to disasters, with the artists assisting the 10 to 12-year-olds in realising their creative responses to scenes of devastation. Bristol duo Action Hero concern themselves with the banality of popular culture’s linguistic tropes. Back in July, they called at the Warwick Arts Centre with Hoke’s Bluff, a teen movie-inspired exposition of melodrama and faux-profundity. Now, for Fierce, they return to the same venue with the altogether more confrontational SLAP TALK (OCTOBER 6). For four solid hours, Gemma Paintin and James Stenhouse will face each other and exchange insults supplied by autocue. The audience, no doubt to their relief, will be free to drop in and out as they please. JOSHUA LIGHT SHOW

In the first weekend of October, the cream of global performance art converges on Brum for the 15th anniversary of Fierce Festival. Dan Cooper-Gavin casts his eye over what’s in store. Under the fearless direction of Laura McDermott and Harun Morrison, the Fierce name has become a byword for the bleeding edge of live art – encompassing theatre, music, performance art, visual art and beyond. The festival is now one of the most hotly-anticipated events on the cultural calendar. Tracing its origins back to 1998’s Queerfest, this year’s offering, spread over 10 separate venues in and around Brum, will reflect on the preceding 15 years while offering a pulsequickening programme showcasing today’s most breathtaking creative practitioners. Digbeth’s Edible Eastside hosts the festival’s ceremonial opening on OCTOBER 4, with diners

invited to partake of the BLOOD MOON FEAST. The wholesome, home-grown meal will be visited upon by the six-strong international collective The Wolf In The Winter, touring England under the banner The Blind Leading The Blind, drawing inspiration from Bruegel’s 16th-century painting of the same name, featuring six wretched characters stumbling across the land. Throughout the Fierce weekend, invigorating, envelope-pushing performance is the name of the game, with one example to be found in the intense KNIGHTS OF THE INVISIBLE (OCTOBER 5). DanceXchange, located within the Birmingham Hippodrome, will host the collaborative work, which casts the inventive contortions of dancer Iona Kewney against a harsh sonic backdrop provided by Joseph Quimby, a guitarist otherwise known for his work with Glasgow band Remember Remember. Bracing and life-affirming in equal measure. It’s no holds barred at the Jewellery Quarter’s AE Harris factory, as BECOMING AN IMAGE (OCTOBER 5) sees Canadian artist Heather Cassils thrown into battle against an actual ton of clay.

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There are several events that run throughout the weekend. PAPER STAGES is an imaginative contribution from Edinburgh outfit Forest Fringe. In need of a new performance space after losing their home at the Edinburgh Festival, they found what they were looking for not in bricks and mortar, but in the Paper Stages book. Inside are new works from a range of artists, which readers are invited to perform themselves around the city. The book will be made available to Fierce volunteers. Meanwhile, WORKTABLE welcomes visitors into Digbeth’s Minerva Works. Once handed instructions, equipment and safety goggles, you’re then free to engage with the mystery objects that lie within however you see fit.

WORKTABLE

French artist Denis Tricot will be in residence at the Birmingham Town Hall throughout the weekend, creating looping wooden structures as concepts Brum Notes Magazine


It’s a wide-ranging programme, but one that’s characterised throughout by its audacity, imagination and inspiration. Fierce Festival is an important and exhilarating element of the UK contemporaryarts scene, and an event that Brum ought to be incredibly proud of. Here’s to the next 15 years.

CAKES DA KILLA

for A SCULPTURE FOR BIRMINGHAM, while at the Mac in Edgbaston, FUN WITH CANCER PATIENTS features the creative responses of local youngsters diagnosed with the disease.

that night, New York’s alt-rap rising star CAKES DA KILLA heads up CLUB FIERCE: XXX, bringing his innuendo-laden rhymes to Club PST, where he will joined by local MC RoxXxan among others.

Music’s a huge element of the Fierce experience too. AE Harris hosts one part of the Saturdaynight CLUB FIERCE extravaganza (OCTOBER 5), with Irish production duo Eat My Noise supported by maverick multi-disciplinary artist Bob Parks and the utterly captivating Sarah-Jane Norman. Norman will be delivering one of her extraordinary Songs Of Rapture And Torture performances, in which the audience will enter one by one as she sings the Kurt Weill song Surabaya Johnny over and over again until her voice gives out. Later

And as if all that weren’t enough, the weekend is rounded off by a unique Closing Concert (Warwick Arts Centre, OCTOBER 6), which will see electronica artist NICOLAS JAAR performing against a backdrop supplied by the legendary JOSHUA LIGHT SHOW. Best known for its accompaniments to the likes of Jimi Hendrix and The Doors in the late 60s and early 70s, the reformed Light Show comes to Fierce for a rare UK appearance, combining its original analogue methods with contemporary digital work.

Fierce Festival 2013 runs from October 4–6 at various venues in Birmingham and the West Midlands. Visit www.wearefierce.org for the full festival programme.

NICOLAS JAAR

AUTUMN 2013 DIARY September

October

42 (12a - UK Premier) - Kush Film Boutique Fri 20 Sep, 8pm £10 P The Official Launch of Birmingham Black History Month 2013 Fri 27 Sep, 6pm Invitation Only The Autograph Archive in Focus Exhibition: Back in the Day Fri 27 Sep - Thu 31 Oct Free Admission* 45 Shop Lock: Sound System Friday Fri 27 Sep, 10pm £10, Ladies free Autograph ABP Photography Roadshow Missing Chapter Sat 28 Sep, 11am Free Admission Reggae Salute Sat 28 Sep, 10pm £30+, MOTD

Black History Month 2013 50th Anniversary of Martin Luther King “I have a dream” speech Dear Birmingham Book Launch Wed 2 Oct, 6pm Ticket: £3 (£2) Nubian Readers’ Book Club Fri 4 Oct, 7:30pm - £2 P Birmingham Comedy Festival Fri 4 Oct, 7pm £12.50 (£10.50) MOTD Hip-Hop Shakespeare Sat 5 Oct, 7:30pm £10 P Continuous Journeys: Screening and Q&A Sun 6 Oct, 7:30pm Free Admission* P

Sorry! No Coloureds, No Irish, No Dogs Fri 11 Oct, 7:30pm £8 (£6) Drum Talk: In Conversation Wed 16 Oct, 7pm £7 (£5) Aar Maanta plus Guests Fri 18 Oct, 8pm - £8, MOTD P Sora Cool Jawayi Fool Sat 19 Oct, 7:30pm £10 (£7.50) P Lascar Book Launch Thu 24 Oct, 6pm Free Admission* 45 Shop Lock: Sound System Friday Fri 25 Oct, 10pm £10, Ladies free One Dub Live Fri 25 Oct, 9pm £8.50+, £10+, £15 OTD

Black History Month Dinner and Dance Sat 26 Oct, 7:30pm £35 & £10 The Pomedy Show Sun 27 Oct, 7:30pm £10 (£8) MOTD P

November Nubian Readers’ Book Club Fri 1 Nov, 7:30pm - £2 A Few Good Comics Fri 1 Nov, 7pm £12.50 (£10.50) MOTD Four Fathers Exhibition Tue 5 Nov - Thu 28 Nov Free Admission* Four Fathers Exhibition Launch Tue7 Nov, 6pm - Free Admission* Smile Orange Fri 8 Nov & Sat 9 Nov, 7:30pm - £19 (£17), £22 OTD P One Dub Live Sat 9 Nov, 9pm £8.50+, £10+, £15 OTD Maari Honey-Ne Bhave Money Sun 10 Nov, 4pm - £10

Jongleurs Comedy on the Road Fri 15 Nov, 8:00pm £12 (£10) Affinity 2 Sat 16 Nov, 7:30pm £7.50 (£5) P Viewers Choice Kush Film Boutique Fri 22 Nov, 8pm £10 P The G Spot Sat 23 & Sun 24 Nov, 7:30pm - £12 (£10) Guantanamo Boy Thu 28 Nov, 7:30pm £7 (£5) P Guantanamo Boy Fri 29 Nov, 1pm - £7 (£5) P Nubian Readers’ Book Club Fri 29 Nov, 7:30pm - £2

45 Shop Lock: Sound System Friday Fri 29 Nov, 10pm £10, Ladies free

December Photograph Exhibition: Sonia Audhali - Little Yemen Tue 3 Dec - Thu 30 Jan Free Admission* Autumn Comedy Series Fri 6 Dec, 7pm £12.50 (£10.50) MOTD Town Hall Gospel Christmas Sun 15 Dec, 7pm -£12.50 (£8.50) Raggarella Fri 20, Sat 21 & Sun 22 Dec, 7.30pm - £15 (£13)

THE UK’S PREMIER BLACK-LED ARTS CENTRE www.the-drum.org.uk 0121 333 2444 October 2013

11


Ghostly Sounds

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Brum Notes Magazine


In the wake of his second album, Some Say I So I Say Light, Ghostpoet tells David Vincent why his latest work is the sign of a man “evolving as a musician, lyricist and human being.” Obaro Ejimiwe is a man going places. So much so that he doesn’t have too much time to spare, but still manages to squeeze in a chat. “I’m on the way to Australia, later today,” says the man better known as Ghostpoet. “I’ve been to Australia before, a couple of years ago, so yeah, should be fun… should be fun, yes...” The Aussie dates come after a solid run of well received festival and headline appearances for the brooding urban musical exponent and former Coventry resident. “It’s been fun, yeah, I’ve been touring on my own, there’s been festivals, it’s been nice to play to people. Everything has its time and place, and it’s been good playing new music and seeing how it goes down. I like playing live, I like playing live,” he repeats, “...and I’ve been lucky to be able to do that.” Any particular festival’s stick in the mind?

October 2013

of balancing outside of the studio with inside of the studio, I was aware that in the studio is a very different experience and I didn’t want to forget where music is played when I was there. Not everyone listens to music in a studio setting, they listen in so many other settings. My music is very much about the world outside, and it was very important for me to get that across...” While retaining the grounded mix that made his debut such an appealing prospect, the sophomore broadens Ghostpoet’s musical palette without watering down the results or resorting to studio trickery as he calls on the talents of such names as legendary Afrobeat drummer Tony Allen (Africa 70/ Fela Kuti, The Good, the Bad and the Queen), who contributes to Plastic Bag Brain. “I was in the studio [for the recording]. He was very humble and very professional, and very super talented. We gave him the skeleton of the tune and built the rest of it around him. He was a very inspirational character.”

“They all stick in my mind, there’s been all kinds of highlights – they’ve all been highlights. I saw Drenge, for the first time, which was cool.”

Another guest is (former Brum Notes cover star) Lucy Rose, who lends her tones to Dial Tones.

Following the shows down under, Ghostpoet returns to Blighty for a UK tour promoting second long-player Some Say I So I Say Light, released back in May on new label PIAS, also now home to to fellow former Midlanders Editors.

“She’s great, great,” he enthuses, “and a really great singer. I liked her vocal and I’m a fan of her music and a fan of the stuff she did with Bombay Bicycle Club, and I thought she just had the right voice.”

“It’s nice to be on PIAS, they just left me to make my music, which is what I wanted to do,” he says. “I wanted to work with a co-producer and I wanted to feature guest musicians on a larger scale than the first record, which is what we did and I’m happy with the results. Very happy. It’s a continuation of me being creative, I’m evolving as a musician, evolving as a lyricist, developing as an artist and a human being.”

At a time when music seems to be shifting towards a track culture, where single songs slip out and punters pick and choose from larger catalogues, Obaro prefers to work on the good old fashioned album. “It’s about the album for me,” he says, adding that his label suggests singles. “I’m not bothered. I like the idea of a body of work rather than individual tracks or a series of singles.

While his Mercury Prize nominated debut, 2010’s Peanut Butter Blues And Melancholy Jam, released via Gilles Peterson’s Brownswood imprint, was a bedroom recording, Some Say I... saw Obaro heading into the studio with co-producer Richard Formby, whose CV spans Wild Beasts, Darkstar and Egyptian Hip-Hop, alongside such seminal noiseniks as Spacemen 3 and The Telescopes.

“There are many examples of [artists] who take the idea of an album seriously, it’s important to me as an artist, it’s important to me to make albums, not just a series of singles. It’s not about the singles chart. But everyone has to do what they have to do, that’s fine. I personally choose to focus on making albums.”

“I was very conscious of that [move from bedroom to studio], but I wanted to try a different style of creativity,” he explains. “There’s definitely a case

Ghostpoet is live at The Glee Club, Birmingham, on October 21. Latest album Some Say I So I Say Light is out now.

13


Shine a Light Since the appearance of their 2011 debut, Gracious Tide, Take Me Home, much has changed for Newcastle’s cinematic indie adventurers Lanterns on the Lake. But while their line-up may have fluctuated, their shimmering, atmospheric sound remains very much in tact, as proven by the recent release of new LP Until The Colours Run. Vocalist and guitarist Hazel Wilde answers the questions. You’ve been compared pretty regularly recently with Arcade Fire and Sigur Ros, and previously Mazzy Star – what do you think to the comparisons? They are pretty flattering comparisons. I’d say most of us certainly admire records by Sigur Ros and Arcade Fire. I’ve not heard a huge amount of Mazzy Star stuff if I’m honest but what I have heard was pretty nice. To be compared to any band or artist is always pretty interesting to us – often we find we’re compared to bands that we don’t really feel have influenced us at all. I guess you always get that when people first hear your music though. How do you feel Until The Colours Run differs from Gracious Tide, Take Me Home? I’d like to think that it is a progression for us as songwriters and as a band. The last record was innocent and full of hope. This one is older, wiser, deeper, maybe a little bitter at times. It feels more complex. It was a difficult album to make for a number of reasons and it carries a lot of emotional weight as a result of that. It’s full of contradictions and makes me feel a mixture of things to be honest. It’s dark, anxious and introverted at times but at other times it’s bursting with life and feels confident and bold. It has colour in its veins and a black heart beating at the core. You have previously said “It feels like there is a story that runs through the songs, a personal 14

journey through modern life.” Does that still ring true? A lot of the songs are reflecting on the things that were going on around us at the time. Lyrically, these things were personal, political, worries about the future and frustrations about the present. Musically, it feels like a real release for us in parts and at other times it feels quite dark and fragile. I suppose an example of that in one of the songs would be The Ghost That Sleeps In Me, which I guess is about the difficulties involved in being in a band in this day and age – when people steal music so you can’t make a living from it and you see people in bands who you feel aren’t really doing it for the right reasons. It’s about that fading spirit inside you when you’ve been working towards something that you love for so long and you feel that you’re forgetting the true reason why you started in the first place.

over-the-top political core or being too directly obvious about what you’re singing about. Another Tale.. is a song first and foremost and I don’t think that the meaning behind the words is too overpowering or too blatant when you first hear it. I try to make it that way with all of the songs – I don’t want them to be explicitly obvious what they are about on first listen, it’s good for people to work it out themselves and most people are intelligent enough to work that side of the music out if that’s what they’re interested in. Other people want to listen to the songs in a more passive way, and that’s fine too. Adam and Brendan Sykes left the band last year, what affect did that have on the band and the recording of the album?

Some of the tracks on the new album, such as the single Another Tale From Another English Town, touch on the harsh times we live in – would you describe the record as being a political album, or perhaps more one with a social awareness?

It was a new lease of life for us, not in any way because we were glad they were gone of course – more because I think that any change can give you a new way of looking at things. We suddenly felt very creative and excited about making music together again despite all the upheaval and uncertainty. It gave us a kind of freedom in a way – to approach things differently and to feel that we had nothing left to lose.

I’m kind of amazed that more people are writing songs that carry some of that political and social awareness at the moment. I do feel that you can write songs that have that awareness and some depth and meaning to them without having an

Lanterns on the Lake are live at the Hare & Hounds, Kings Heath, on October 16. New album Until The Colours Run is out now on Bella Union. Brum Notes Magazine


October 2013

15


Splashhing Out

How did two New Zealanders, an Australian and a lone bassist from Telford come together to form one of the UK’s most exciting new bands? One of the aforementioned New Zealanders, drummer Jacob Moore, tells Amy Sumner where it all began for Splashh.

“I’ve known Sasha [Carlson – vocals, guitar] for almost 10 years and our getting together was a case of circumstance,” he explains. “Sasha and Toto [Vivian – guitar, synth] had started writing music together and then they invited Tom [Beale – bass] to start playing with them. I ended up coming at it a slightly weird way because I lived on the other side of the world in New Zealand so Sasha had to convince them that I could be the guy for their project.” Convince them he did though and they ended up in the English capital and in the pages of every music magazine and paper worth its salt devilishly fast. Releasing three singles on Luv Luv Luv records (Need It, Vacation and All I Wanna Do), the band soon saw themselves riding a wave of hype and enthusiasm which set up their self-produced debut record, Comfort, with an extraordinary level of expectancy. What was anticipated was a blissed-out, carefree scorcher of a late summer offering – what was actually produced is a beautiful juxtaposition of upbeat pop, dripping in West Coast influences, all laced through with a kind of accepting despondency. “The response has been really good to it,” enthuses Jacob. “I don’t really read the reviews or 16

anything but my friends say that they like it so that’s the main thing.” The record comes complete with a sleeve designed by artist Leif Podhajsky, a graphic designer and art director who’s also worked for the likes of Tame Impala, Toy and The Horrors. “Leif is from the same place in Australia that Toto is from so they’re friends from home, which is a place called Byron Bay. He’s a friend, we drink beers with him, and he was nice enough to offer to do the record cover for us – it was actually a collaboration between him and Toto’s brother,” Moore explains. Splashh have had a crazy summer, playing festivals across Europe including Reading/Leeds, Benicassim and Midi Festival in France. “Benicassim was a highlight because the weather was the hottest and they took care of us the best,” Moore says, “they do in Europe, much better than in England. They feed you up well and give you loads of drink – take you to the beach and drive you around!” The band head out on a UK tour in support of the new album at the beginning of October, calling at The Institute in Birmingham on October 14. Having already played this venue with

Unknown Mortal Orchestra, as well as the Hare & Hounds in Kings Heath (with Popstrangers), how has Birmingham treated the four-piece so far? “Pretty well,” Moore says, “I’m looking forward to playing, I like Birmingham and I like going into the big old crazy-looking mall! Support this time around comes from the incendiary Charlie Boyer & The Voyeurs, with whom Splashh are looking forward to getting better acquainted. “We’ve seen them playing around in London a little bit and we’ve caught them around the festivals this year,” Jacob adds. “I’ve seen them around town more than I’ve seen them playing though and I know they have a really good taste in music so I’m looking forward to hanging out with them and seeing how we get along.”

Splashh are live at The Institute, Birmingham, on October 14, with support from Charlie Boyer & The Voyeurs on October 14. Debut album Comfort is out now on Luv Luv Luv Records. Brum Notes Magazine


October 2013

17


Not Such a Shambles Babyshambles have surprised a lot of people by managing to return with a third album at all, and even more so by producing something that is really rather good. While frontman Peter Doherty continues to hog most of the headlines, it is bassist Drew McConnell being hailed as the man who has steered the band towards their most coherent work to date. He tells Tom Pell how it all came together. 18

Brum Notes Magazine


“‘Unpredictable’ is probably the best word to sum up Peter. But I think I’ve developed an arsenal of cognitive approaches to deal with the myriad of ways that he is.” Peter (Yeah, you heard) Doherty recently described Babyshambles’ six-year hiatus as, “a fucking shambles,” which, apart from sounding like a rather aggressive tribute act, didn’t bode well for fans of the band. “We had no communication, no direction,” he also muttered. Bassist Drew McConnell disagrees. After a near death experience in 2011, he’s somewhat unsurprisingly more positive. Look out – a leaner and meaner Babyshambles are back. “I wouldn’t say we were particularly far apart,” says Drew, “I think there was just a degree of separation in the fact that Peter moved to Paris. We didn’t see him so much on a week to week basis. Mik and I remained close and spent a lot of time together, even doing little shows together.” On top of these little shows, Drew was “paying the bills” by playing as a session musician for other bands. He’s also been heavily involved in his main side project, Helsinki, and there was even 2009’s flirtation with Mongrel, where he played alongside Arctic Monkeys drummer Matt Helders and Reverend & The Makers frontman John McClure. He’s not exactly been sat at home on the sofa, twiddling his thumbs. “Peter was making a film, and a solo record, and there was The Libertines reunion too,” Drew adds. “Mik’s been recording bands in his studio in South London. What brought us back together was us just spending more time together – Peter and myself.” “Around November he just started coming round my house a lot, ringing my door bell at 11, 12 o’clock at night. He’d be there with an acoustic guitar, throwing picks at my window. So I’d let him in, and he’d play me some new songs. I had quite a few songs that I had written, originally with Helsinki in mind, and Peter liked them a lot too. So we took these songs and added bits on to them, and it got us really excited. Then from about January to April, I spent a lot of time commuting on the Eurostar, between home and Peter’s place. We seemed to tap into this really creative zone, and productivity went way up. And then we decided to take them outside of mine and Peter’s bedrooms and into the studio, so the rest of the world could hear them too.” Nothing Comes To Nothing emerged in August, the first release to come from third album Sequel October 2013

To The Prequel, which followed in September to acclaim – and indeed surprise – from many critics. Nothing Comes To Nothing gave a good taster blessed with an infectious, melodic tone, which would not surprise ardent Babyshambles fans, but the fact that it’s a bloody good song and was followed by a bloody good album definitely appeased them. The habitual knack for a hook is palpable, and a real joy can be heard. The cover art (more on that later) for both single and album – what looks like literally an explosion of colour – is a stark contrast to the black and white front of Albion. Maybe a break is good for the soul. “I love being in this band,” Drew affirms. “I love being on tour with the lads, and I think that our new video [for Nothing Comes To Nothing] is a pretty accurate description of what it’s like to be in Babyshambles. It’s Peter who does the huge stage dive. He only just makes it, doesn’t he! He does it all the time. I remember seeing it on the video, but I can’t even remember what show it was. I can’t remember him hurting himself too severely, so he must have been fine afterwards.” The artistry involved on the record doesn’t end there, as the lads have hit the jackpot on the creator of their sleeve art. It’s only bloomin’ Damien Hirst. “I actually teach his son guitar,” explains Drew. “That was the foot in the door. Basically, we asked him if he could think of anyone that might be prepared to do the cover art for us. In the back of my mind I wanted to ask him, I’ve wanted to ask him for years. But I daren’t ask him directly. So I approached him like that. And when he got back and said he’d do it, it was like ‘Ahhh!’” As well as being the connection to Damien Hirst, Peter has claimed that Drew was the ‘glue’ that brought the band back together in the first place. But, modestly, Drew again disputes his colleague’s thoughts. “It’s delightful to hear, but I wouldn’t try to claim that. Maybe I’m a little bit more proactive and militant about getting the work done, but it wouldn’t have been possible without Mik and Peter there. I can run around and rally around a whole number of people, but Mik and Peter are so talented and so integral to what we do that it’s totally a three way thing.”

Drew, Peter and Mik alone would, however, sound rather hollow, as there would be a lack of the ol’ drums. Three drummers down since 2005, the band have recruited Adam Falkner to take on the mantle. “I met Adam working with John Robinson, who also wrote Fall From Grace and Minefield on the new album. We had a little band called Hey Tourists, and we made a great record, produced by Stephen Street [who has also produced Sequel To The Prequel], that never got released. But this guy Adam played drums. So when we got into a studio, he was my first choice. He’s a remarkable drummer. He’s so good – when you play with a drummer that good, he makes you raise your game. He’s permanently on the drum stool now, he’s the man.” A permanent line-up is not something to be sniffed at, especially when Drew himself was involved in a 2011 road accident, leaving him with three vertebrae, five ribs, a shoulder and a knee all broken. He even had to learn to walk again. “I’m back to about 90 per cent now,” he reckons. “I’m still doing physiotherapy and I’m still swimming every day. But I’m probably the healthiest I’ve been in years physically, despite the injury.” Babyshambles fans can rejoice – they are fit, healthy and ready to seduce your eardrums. But after the drugs, the injuries and the “fucking shambles,” has one of music biggest enigma’s matured into his responsibilities? “Man. ‘Unpredictable’ is probably the best word to sum up Peter. But I think I’ve developed an arsenal of cognitive approaches to deal with the myriad of ways that he is. ‘Fun’ is another word I’d use to summarise him. He’s an extremely funny person, I don’t think people know. He’s just an inherently funny person. If you ever get the chance to spend a day with him, the chances are that you’ll spend that day laughing. But artistically and creatively it’s a real crap shoot as to how he’s going to be. Sometimes there’s just more gas in the tank than on other days.”

Babyshambles are live at the O2 Academy, Birmingham, on October 14. New album Sequel To The Prequel is out now. 19


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Brum Notes Magazine


October 2013

21


PREVIEW: BRING TO LIGHT

Sleaford Mods

In a bold nod to the avant-garde, the sparkling new Library of Birmingham has employed the discerning minds behind our fair city’s peerless Supersonic Festival to curate its inaugural arts programme. The musical centrepiece of Capsule’s Discovery Season is a weekend of far-ranging musical delights under the banner ‘Bring To Light’, a chance for the library to slip off it’s horn-rimmed specs, release it’s tresses and embrace the city’s ‘Forward’ motto… Discerning music aficionado Mark Alex Preston, from Birmingham’s finest skateboard shop, Ideal in Digbeth’s Custard Factory, takes us through the highlights.

SLEAFORD MODS

Don’t be misled by the nomenclature, this is no sealed-knot, two-stroke nostalgia yawn but a truly mod(ern) prole art threat that harnesses hip hop’s stürm to release the blue collar drang. In frontman Williamson’s hands the mic becomes a shank that spills the guts of the boozers and bullshitters that dog modern life from the corridors of power to that flat-roofed pub you cross the road to avoid. Friday (Oct 25), Rainbow Warehouse

EVIL BLIZZARD

With age comes understanding and Evil Blizzard understand the mantric power of bullying rock’n’roll repetition. These

Deaf Heaven

Masaki Batoh

masked psychonauts summon thunderous crescendos, streaked by synth howls and incantations to the heavens, embellished with a playful nod to the prog theatrics of yore. Sunday (Oct 27), Library of Birmingham

KOGUMAZA

HIGH WOLF

CLIPPING

A rising equatorial sun melts a veil of mist to reveal a landscape of orange hued tones and sweeping drones, ancient rhythms beating a path to the here and now. Saturday (Oct 26), Library of Birmingham

DINOS CHAPMAN

It’s a sign of music’s inherent power that the modern visual artist is free to straddle both disciplines without demeaning the credibility, and more pertinently the quality, of either practice. In contrast to his Turner-nominated output, the music is bubbling, seductive electronica, coupled with bespoke visuals to fully immerse eyes and ears. Friday, Rainbow Warehouse

RICHARD DAWSON

Folk without the fiddle-de-dee, Dawson weaves his yarns via the power of wrangled guitar and fermented vocal chords that career from growls to heart stopping howls, exhilarating, disarmingly intimate, unforgettable. Saturday, Library of Birmingham

A psychedelic snarl of pulsating dual guitar motorik that owes more to ripped black jeans than velvet bell-bottoms, prepare to lose yourself in the fuzz wah vortex… Saturday, Library of Birmingham Hip hop that’s veered way more than 8 Miles off the path beaten into smooth banality by countless box-fresh Airforce Ones. Eschewing bass bin booty throb or trad blast of Wesley’s horns for stabs of static and slabs of concrète over which MC Daveed Diggs spits Gatling gun salvos of ghetto reportage. Sunday, Library of Birmingham

HORDES

Drop forged molten metal steeped in local sweat ‘n’ Mild tradition, lump-hammer blows and blasted beats obliterate the mirror to man’s savage soul, the bad luck shards reflecting only the slag and swarf of the naked ape. Friday, Rainbow Warehouse

ZOMES

Asa Osbourne is a musical alchemist distilling transcendental sound from the simplest precious ingredients, his shimmering keyboard flights now augmented by the chiming voice of Hanna Olivegren. Expect nothing less than the beautiful. Saturday, Library of Birmingham

Josephine Foster

22

Brum Notes Magazine Zomes

Sarah Angliss

Dinos Chapman


SARAH ANGLISS

A haunted music box populated by ragged automata and the defunct detritus of progress, Angliss is the ringmaster of a forgotten circus of peeling greasepaint, myth and magick. Sunday, Library of Birmingham

MASAKI BATOH

‘Brain Pulse Music’ is just that, the sonic manifestation of the constant synaptic currents that create sentience. Through this device and reverential excursion into sacred and folk traditions, Batoh strives to heal the still-bleeding psychological wounds of Japan’s 2011 earthquake. Sunday, Library of Birmingham

DEAFHEAVEN

Even genre’s riddled with dogma need the life-blood of progression – Deafheaven strip the corpsepaint from black metal and venture into more experimental pastures, though be assured these fields still shudder with fearsome screams and tinnitus-inducing assaults of amplified guitar. Friday, Rainbow Warehouse

LAURENCE HUNT

Stalwart of the Midlands underground

experimental music scene, Hunt combines his deft percussion skills with dusty analogue ripples, paying homage to the history and regeneration of his environment. Sunday, Library of Birmingham

ROBEDOOR

You regain consciousness on a bed of ornate ice cold marble, a grotesque mask grasps your nape and thrusts a chalice to your lips, its contents sear your tongue and throat and within seconds your mind is spinning out of control. Waves of astral vibrations grip your soul, swooping, soaking reverberations and guttural low frequencies contort your spine. Two figures approach as you struggle to focus your senses – Robedoor are the house band to your arcane awakening ritual. Saturday, Library of Birmingham

SHANGAAN ELECTRO

From rural Limpopo to the townships to the clubs and now to the Midlands, a frenetic 180bpm whirlwind of marimba and ancient voices makes Shangaan Electro a uniquely modern sound of Africa. If your body can take it the requisite dancefloor chops will be workshopped, expect the dust to be kicked up and the ceiling to sweat. Friday, Rainbow Warehouse

JOSEPHINE FOSTER

A skilled and subtle chanteuse who cuts to the heart of the human experience with an ease and grace many try to cultivate but few achieve. Beguiling tales of myth and love intricately rendered from a traditional palette of instrumentation. Saturday, Library of Birmingham

DELIA DARLINGS

The pioneering electronic sounds of Delia Derbyshire are fundamentally ingrained in the national subconscious even if her name is a mystery to the listener. This project from the curators of her archive aims to bring her BBC Radiophonic legacy to the attention of a wider audience. Sunday, Library of Birmingham Bring To Light is part of the Library of Birmingham opening season, curated by Capsule. It takes place from October 25 to 27 at the Library of Birmingham and The Rainbow. Weekend tickets are £40 from www.theticketsellers.co.uk, with limited day tickets also available. Visit www.capsule.org for the full line-up and schedule.

EVERY SINGLE MONDAY OF THE YEAR SINCE 2001

JAM JAH MONDAYS

Serving the best selection of Reggae, Roots, Dancehall, Dub from the greatest to the latest, with live MC’s and Percussion by

JAM JAH SOUND in full effect

9pm to 12am (2am on bank holidays)

FREE ENTRY EVERY WEEK Drinks Promos ‘til 10.30pm / Smoking Terrace

UPSTAIRS @ THE BULL’S HEAD 26 St Marys Row , Moseley B13 8HW www.jamjahsound.com - soundcloud.com/jam-jah-sound facebook.com/jamjahsound October 2013

23


YOUR GUIDE The OxjamBrum Takeover Festival is back. Now in it’s fifth year, the festival will see more than 50 bands playing at six different venues across the city – all on the same day. Abigail Edge takes you through this year’s highlights. OxjamBrum returns for 2013 on Saturday, October 12, with headline acts including folk favourites Boat to Row, ska superstars Tempting Rosie and reggae collective 1Eye. The day kicks off at 2pm with a parade through the city centre led by samba collective Oya Batucada and the Indian Dhol Blasters. Then comes a stream of fantastic acts from the best of Birmingham’s independent music scene, from rock, punk and reggae to folk, funk, electro and hip hop, plus DJs and MCs. And naturally, the venues for this year’s event – The Yardbird, The Victoria, Brewdog, The Sunflower Lounge, Island Bar and the newly-opened Cherry Reds on John Bright Street – are all within stumbling distance from each other.

don’t forget to add your own tweets and photos using the hashtag #OxjamBrum2013.

THE FULL LINE-UP BREWDOG John Bright Street 9.00pm

Matt Stocks

7.00pm 6.00pm 5.00pm 4.00pm 3.00pm 2.15pm 1.30pm

Mellow Peaches Carousel Circus The Mourning Suns 4oz of groove Joint Honours Rob Fellows James Valentine Byrne

THE YARDBIRD Paradise Place 10.00pm Tempting Rosie

Frederick the Canal Barge is also back again this year hosting secret sessions across the afternoon – keep your eyes peeled for more information at the festival. As if that’s not enough, there’ll also be an 8bit retro gaming lounge, live art and rap battles. This special pull-out guide and map not only previews the bands that are playing at each venue but also acts as a festival programme on the day. Handy, eh? All money raised by OxjamBrum will help to support Oxfam projects in Syria and around the world. Tickets cost £10 in advance, available now from the OxjamBrum website, www.oxjambrum.org.uk, or www.wegottickets.com. You can also buy tickets on the day for £12 from the wristband collection point on John Bright Street. Follow the OxjamBrum team on Twitter @Oxjambrum for more exclusive updates on the day – and 24

Former Kerrang Radio DJ Matt Stocks takes to the decks. You can also catch Matt later at The Victoria. 8.00pm Mezzotonic An explosive four-piece funk/rock band, Mezzontonic are currently going from strength to strength on the unsigned scene. Their high-octane mix of funk, rock, rap and hip hop is guaranteed to get you dancing.

Trumpet-waving, ass-kicking band from Birmingham who mash up influences from the realms of ska, dub and rap with a sprinkling of pop goodness thrown in for good measure. 9.00pm 1Eye A 13-strong reggae collective, they take their influences from the likes of John Holt, Ken Boothe and The Heptones and recently supported Jimmy Cliff on his UK tour. Guaranteed to rock the dance-floor their sweet sounds and skanking licks, taking you back to a classic Kingston vibe. Brum Notes Magazine


9.00pm 8.15pm 7.30pm 6.45pm 6.00pm 5.15pm 4.30pm 3.45pm 3.00pm

Youth Man Table Scraps Layers Templeton Pek Jet Pack New Killer Shoes Super 73 Bigger Than Seattle Chasing Skylines

ISLAND BAR Suffolk Street Queensway 8.30pm 7.45pm 7.00pm

The Oddysee + Dantanna “Rap-Battles” Mutes Bailey

THE VICTORIA John Bright Street 8.00pm 7.15pm 6.30pm 5.45pm 5.00pm 4.15pm 3.30pm 2.45pm

The Bluebeat Arkestra Snooty Bobs Kezia Soul The Roots Ambassadors Lumi HD Call me Unique The Emmanuelites Anna Phoebe

CHERRY REDS John Bright Street

9.00pm 8.00pm 7.15pm 6.30pm 5.45pm 5.00pm 4.15pm 3.15pm 2.30pm

Miles Cocker Club Phobia Luke Wylde and the Japes I Am Anushka Racing Drakelow Arcade Parade Moselele Lauren Pryke

1.00am Matt Stocks Fomer Kerrang Radio DJ Matt Stocks provides the perfect finale to the OxjamBrum party. 10.00pm Sunshine Frisbee Laserbeam

THE SUNFLOWER LOUNGE Smallbrook Queensway

10.00pm Boat to Row 10.00pm God Damn

Possibly winning the award for best band name on the OxjamBrum line-up, SFL’s stripped-down, bass-less set up enables them to bash out driving, gloriously widescreen alt-pop anthems at an alarming rate. Cue tracks evoking the best eras of Sebadoh and ‘Trail of Dead sieved through a post-dreampop colander.

Midlands quintet Boat To Row have already earned an outstanding live reputation around the UK thanks to their buoyant, instrumentally deft and harmony-laden performances. Favourites of BBC 6 Music and Radio 2, they’ve shared stages with Slow Club, Willy Mason and Johnny Flynn. Not to be missed. October 2013

The recent single I’m a Lazer, You’re a Radar from Black Country metallers God Damn was hailed by the NME as “a rip-rollicking thrash, brutally mixing grunge and the region’s finest export, heavy metal”. Can you handle it?

9.00pm 8.15pm 7.30pm 6.45pm 6.00pm 5.15pm 4.30pm 3.45pm 3.00pm

Midnight Bonfires The Bombergs Hoopla Blue The Ravens Capital Sun The Scribers Adore Sylvia Chris Cleverley

OxjamBrum Takeover Festival 2013 takes place on October 12, wristbands £10 advance, £12 on the day. Visit www.oxjambrum.org.uk. 25


coming up again More than a decade after their last studio album, 90s guitar heroes Suede are back with a new album, Bloodsports. Bassist Mat Osman tells David Vincent why it’s been such a gradual process to get that “elusive magic” back again. After the deluge that became grunge, Suede were the first great home-grown guitar band of the 90s. Heralded as ‘The Best New Band in Britain’ by the then powerful weekly music press, they had a swagger, power and attitude not seen since The Smiths. “Sexy as fuck, glam as fuck, Suede are turning heads and breaking hearts every time they play,” gushed one reviewer of the time. Though often mistakenly lumped in with Britpop, Suede were less Waterloo Sunset, Tony Blair and lager, more rumbling thunder over concrete tower blocks, and very much a product of Thatcher’s grey and crumbling Britain – they wanted something a little stronger than lager... From the greatness of their Mercury Prize-winning 1992 eponymous debut album, band members came and went (guitarist Bernard Butler famously quit during second album Dog Man Star, later Neil Codling left exhausted), there were highs and lows, fine experiments and grand follies, shining highs and miserable lows, before it all ended in 26

2003 following a disappointing fifth album and compilation, Singles. In a statement issued at the time Brett stated the split “was based purely on creative reasons”, citing a need to “escape [an] artistic dead end”, before concluding: “I can genuinely see us working together again. What we have done has been too special to just throw away.” Now, 10 years on, Brett Anderson (vocals), Simon Gilbert (drums), Richard Oakes (guitar), Neil Codling (keyboards/guitars) and Mat Osman (bass) are very much back in the saddle, with regular shows and a sixth long-player, the acclaimed Bloodsports. Looking back, Mat blames their demise on the distinctly patchy 2002 LP, A New Morning. “People didn’t like it very much,” he recalls, “and we made music for other people, we were a band that wanted to move people, touch people, do

those things that music did for me. A New Morning isn’t a very good record, and we couldn’t have done anything better at that time, so we split up. I never thought we’d do it again, never. It’s incredibly hard for a reformed band to do it as well again. But we did the Royal Albert Hall and... “ A call in 2010 saw the band back together for charity, and slowly the pieces began to fall back into place. “It was a very gradual thing. We did the [2010] Teenage Cancer Trust charity gig as a one-off, and as it was a one-off, I’d said no to the other offers that inevitably came in to do this and that. But then half way through the gig we all thought, ‘this is too much fun not to do again’. So it was very, very, very piecemeal, we did not want to turn it into a career,” says Mat of their return as a fulltime band. “After six months we were all thinking ‘there’s no rush like playing live’, but we also began thinking about recording, we started writing. We did that for a long time.” Brum Notes Magazine


However, and not for the first time, initial plans to make a new record were disastrous. “We actually had an album done, which was a very different sounding record to Bloodsports,” Mat confesses. “We played some of the songs live and they didn’t stand up to what we’d done before. So it was a slow process. “There was such a contrast [between gigs and recording/writing]. Live was like riding a bike, it sounded great straight away, but we wanted to make a record as good as [third album] Coming Up, so we scrapped the album and started again. It just took us time for us to find our feet again. We’d spent 10 years wandering off, doing other things, we didn’t have a strong direction, which is why we ended up with a very schizophrenic sounding record ... it sounded like five solo records. So we sat down and asked ourselves: ‘what does a Suede song sound like? What do we do? What do we do that’s good? What do we do that’s bad?’ And after a while it just creeps in, you’re past that patch where you keep hitting a barrier, and there’s this weird, elusive magic back again.” The man assigned to capturing that magic was producer Ed Buller, who’d steered their first three albums.

October 2013

“We were a band that wanted to move people, touch people, do those things that music did for me.” “[Fourth album] Head Music went in a certain direction – that’s half a really good record, half not so good. So we thought, ‘what if we’d stuck with Ed Buller?’ It was like this Sliding Doors thing with this record,” says Mat, referring to the 90s ‘what if...?’ film. “You can’t do it again in real life, but you can with a band. So we took that part, and this part... I wanted Bloodsports to fit as part of the Suede cannon. A New Morning fits in a place of its own, so let’s bring this back home.” From the widescreen riffage of Bloodsports’ opener Barriers to the reverbed vocals of ballad closer Faultlines, the resulting tracks sit very much within the cannon. Wrapped in a semi-erotic sleeve, it’s classic Suede, as Brett has stated: “It’s 10 furious songs for me have reclaimed from ourselves what Suede was always about; drama, melody and noise.” “I was pleasantly surprised,” says a clearly still slightly stunned Mat. “Having written so many songs that just weren’t right we thought, ‘perhaps

it’s gone’. Then we suddenly started recording things that sounded like a Suede record. It creeps up on you. I didn’t want it to be a nostalgia trip, so we needed to do new material, and it needed to be strong.” So welcome back to another long-gone band. So many split up with declarations of retirements, yet eventually, they pretty well all clamber back on stage. “No-one ever gives it up,” laughs Mat, fully aware of the addictive qualities of being back in a band. “We were thinking the other day, and couldn’t think of anyone who has really given it up. There are lots who’ve been forced to, but no-one says ‘this is not great, and I’m never going to do this again’. But if they do, they still come back. Even Doris Day.”

Suede are live at the O2 Academy, Birmingham, on October 31. New album Bloodsports is out now.

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To the Max

With their debut album fresh out of the blocks, Derbyshire punk rockers Max Raptor are armed with a storming collection of modern British punk rock anthems. Frontman Wil Ray tells Tom Pell why he’s looking forward to getting reacquainted with Birmingham’s ducks. At this kind of starting point, we’d usually entertain some fancy dan way of explaining who a band are, what they’re all about and from whereabouts they piped up. But after front man Wil Ray opens with, “The name? Oh my god. So, erm, well, I went to Guatemala when I left school…” we reckon it’s best if he just takes it from here. Get comfy, it’s story time.

Costa Rican mythological being, which steals the innocence of children in the night. So, I mean, they’re good stories, but what does it say about us?

Wil continues: “We were told to go and see this museum where there was this god. So we got this little boat out to an island, me and a friend, and this little kid greeted us at the shore and said he’d take us to the museum if we gave him a dollar. So we followed this kid, and it turned out the ‘museum’ was this kid’s house.

Yes Will, it is. Good though. We told you it was better coming from him, didn’t we? But as it transpires, conmen of the night Max Raptor are not, instead choosing to roam the airwaves with their brand of catchy-as-hell hardcore. Images of Million Dead and Reuben are conjured, as something quintessentially English comes across in the fourpiece’s sound. None of this, namby-pamby, US of A nonsense.

“We thought we were being conned, and he was like, ‘no, no, go in – it’s in the back of the house’. We walked in, and there was just people sat around eating their tea, watching television, and as we walked through that room we saw some fly-netting up the other end. We were told the god was in there, so we walked in, and there’s this papier-mache man propped up against the wall, with a load of really pissed guys standing around it. This ‘god’ has cigarettes and alcohol at his feet, and about 20 lit cigarettes crammed into its mouth. We just thought, ‘what the hell is this freak show?!’” “But it turns out this is Maximon, the god of drinking and smoking, a god of folklore that they take really seriously. We were trying to hold back laughter as we gave up a bottle of rum and some cigarettes. So, that’s the Max part!” Between spurts of incredulous laughter, Will continues: “And then the ‘El’ Raptor part is this 28

“That we’re well travelled alcoholic conmen, who steal kids? But that’s how the name came together anyway. I dunno, it’s bit different, isn’t it?”

Unusually, songs are put together mostly via the wonders of modern technology, with the lads (Wil is joined by Ben, Matt and Pete) all living in the East Midlands apart from Wil himself, who’s buggered off to London. “We’ve always lived apart from each other, and we’ve always rotated around England. We stay in touch with email. I get songs sent over to me, and then I’ll write the lyrics and the melodies. There’s always a pattern to the songs, there will be the hooky moments, big bridges, big choruses…but it’s not formulaic. We know when we’ve written a Max Raptor song, if you know what I mean.” After actually meeting up and putting down the songs in person, Max Raptor are following their 2011 mini-album Portraits with their first full release, Mother’s Ruin, out at the end of September. Singles England Breathes and Breakers

contain scream-out-loud moments galore, with a rough-around-the-edges honesty teasing what might come from a live performance. Their live show has been honed through previous tours with Billy Talent and The Stranglers, learning tips from either ends of the punk rock spectrum. “Billy Talent gave us a bit of a break, in 2009, when not a lot of other bands would. We were still only rehearsing every sort of three or four months, so when we got a call from Billy Talent we started taking it more seriously. I tend to not get dragged in to the whole scene thing though. What I listen to isn’t like our sound. I don’t want to be overly-influenced by bands that are similar, or considered to be on the same circuit. I look up to my mom and dad, ha! I don’t really have idols. They’ll eventually let you down.” On October 14, the live show that once greeted a 16-year-old boy’s London bedroom (see www. brumnotes.com for more on that little anecdote) will roll back into Brum, this time for a headline appearance at The Flapper. Expect a full run out of Mothers Ruin, including the ‘Pogues-esque’ ballad that Wil is particularly excited about. “We played there about a month-and-a-half ago when it was really hot [supporting Dinosaur PileUp], it was such a sweatbox. It was a really good show though. I love playing The Flapper, it’s a really great venue. I love the barges, and the ducks…”

Max Raptor are live at The Flapper, Birmingham, on October 14. Debut album Mother’s Ruin is out now on Naim Edge Records. Brum Notes Magazine


metropolis music present

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THE THE PAVILION PAVILION The The Pavilion Pavilion isis aa contemporary contemporary new new site site The Pavilion is a contemporary new site situated situated in in central central Birmingham. Birmingham. Comprising Comprising ofof situated in central Birmingham. Comprising of 138 138 quality quality studios studios and and nine nine one one bedroom bedroom 138 quality studios and nine one bedroom apartments, apartments, all all fully-furnished fully-furnished toto aa high high apartments, all fully-furnished to a high standard standard with with LCD LCD TV. TV. standard with LCD TV.

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www.derwentstudents.com/pavilion www.derwentstudents.com/pavilion www.derwentstudents.com/pavilion For Forall allstudent studentenquiries: enquiries: For all student enquiries: Email Emailus: us:pavilion@derwentstudents.com pavilion@derwentstudents.com Email us: pavilion@derwentstudents.com Call: Call:0121 0121643 6434749 4749 Call: 0121 643 4749 30

10MB 10MB internet 10MBinternet internet included included included Just Just off Broad Street Justoff offBroad BroadStreet Street Plus Plus much more... Plusmuch muchmore... more... Brum Notes Magazine


STUDENT SPECIAL

The Insider Guide to

Birmingham

October 2013

As thousands of new students get settled in to Birmingham, we thought we’d welcome you all with our Insider Guide to Brum, to help you scratch below the surface of your new home. The Second City has seen some extraordinary changes in recent years and there has never been a more exciting time to get out there and enjoy it. It’s the youngest city in Europe and there is plenty more to it than meets the eye, so we’re here to help you stray away from the usual student fodder to discover the best of this fine urban hotbed.

Turn the page for our introduction to Birmingham’s music scene, guide to the hottest pubs, bars and nightclubs and a tour of the city’s finest arts and cultural hotspots. Plus, get some tips on making the most of your student loan with our guide to six of the best places for grub on a budget in the Food & Drink section on P42-43, while you can find out where to get your best threads at some of the city’s best boutiques and independent clothes shops, just turn to our Style section on P40-41.

Whether you’re looking for avant garde arts adventures, cutting edge music, underground club nights, quirky pubs and bohemian bars or uber-cool clothes shops, you’ll find it all within easy reach – you just have to know where to look and learn how to navigate the underpasses and flyovers and make sure you venture out to the suburbs once in a while.

So whether you’re a wet-behind-the-ears fresher, a wise returning student or a native Brummie, we hope you’ll discover something new to sink your teeth into. Welcome to Birmingham, now go and make the most of it...

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An introduction to the

Birmingham Music Scene It probably hasn’t escaped your attention that the Birmingham music scene has been pretty hyped over the past year or so – congrats on making the decision to come here, it’s one of the most exciting cities in the UK in terms of live music with new bands breaking faster than your bank balance will be. Moving to a new city and finding your feet and the venues and scenes you enjoy can be pretty daunting, so we’ve broken down the key players across the city to make the process a little easier. Have a read, get out and experience these places for yourselves and discover exactly why Birmingham is such a great city for music-lovers right now. New Music Editor Amy Sumner guides you through the key haunts and the movers and shakers that will help you hit the right notes.

Music pubs The Victoria, John Bright Street, city centre One of the Bitters ‘n’ Twisted independent family, The Victoria is a theatre pub dating back to the end of the 19th century. With an extensive cocktail menu and the current home of Soul Food Project’s Deep South Diner, you can also enjoy DJs playing the best in funk, soul and rock’n’roll, and a full calendar of live music, book clubs and literary debates. The Adam & Eve, Bradford Street, Digbeth One of the key venues in the formation of the ‘B-Town’ scene, The Adam & Eve was the setting for the Troumaca & Friends parties, which saw performances from both Peace and Swim Deep. Tuck into the weekend Caribbean BBQ or party until dawn at The Afterparty every Saturday – a now legendary haunt for those who want to continue the fun after hours. It also hosts live music, club nights and summer street parties. The Rainbow, High Street, Digbeth Nestled in the creative hotspot of Digbeth, The Rainbow and bygone clubnight Zombie Prom was arguably the catalyst of the Peace/Swim Deep movement. With regular club nights and live music in its Courtyard, Cellar, Warehouse or multitude of other spaces, The Rainbow is one of the city’s most adventurous independent venues. The Actress & Bishop, Ludgate Hill, Jewellery Qtr Located between the city centre and the beautiful Jewellery Quarter, The Actress & Bishop hosts a variety of live music across a range of genres, often specialising in local talent and emerging bands looking for somewhere to hone their skills. With regular late nights on the compact dancefloor, rock DJs, cheap drinks and a terrace, as well

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Music bars as free food during its Sunday acoustic sessions, it’s perfect for socialising with fellow music lovers. The Flapper, Kingston Row, city centre Tucked alongside the canal, just over the road from the National Indoor Arena and a short stroll from the landmark Library of Birmingham, The Flapper hosts an array of rock and heavier gigs in its basement every Friday and Saturday, with touring acts dropping in during the week too, as well as quiz nights in its upstairs bar every Thursday. We Are Scientists, Muse and Editors have all called here in the past. There’s acoustic sessions every Sunday, oh, and you can also order pizza and chill out in the huge waterside beer garden. Perfect combo. Hare & Hounds, High Street, Kings Heath A landmark of the independent hub that is Kings Heath, just five miles out of the city centre, the Hare & Hounds is a Grade II listed building dating back more than a century and with a proud musical heritage, including hosting local legends UB40’s first ever gig. With beautiful Art Nouveau features, the pub has two gig and club rooms which have welcomed the likes of Basement Jaxx, The Temper Trap and Mr Scruff, among others. Expect cutting edge club nights too. Hop on the number 50 bus from the city centre to get here. The Bull’s Head, St Mary’s Row, Moseley Sister venue to the Hare & Hounds, The Bull’s Head is in the trendy boho suburb of Moseley, just down the road. The venue orchestrates an extensive programme of live gigs, micro club nights, and spoken word events with its beautifully intimate upstairs space, and also welcomes DJs to its downstairs bar – the 35, 1 or 50 bus from the centre will get you here.

The Sunflower Lounge Smallbrook Queensway, city centre With a real 60s vibe and a bustling street-side bar pulling in punters every day, The Sunflower Lounge has hosted some of the finest local and touring talent. With a 100-person capacity, the bar’s basement live space is one of the most intimate in the city making it perfect for impromptu secret gigs. Cheap drinks, film and pizza nights and super close proximity to the train station make it perfect for students. The Yardbird Paradise Place, city centre Adorned with lampshades and bird cages hanging from its ceiling, The Yardbird shares its name with the 60s blues band and is a stunning jazz and soul venue. Hosting pretty much exclusively free events including local and touring bands and open mic nights, The Yardbird is gorgeously atmospheric and perfect for a cosy evening out or romantic date. Every week, Birmingham Promoters’ Sunday Social brings you the finest acoustic talent from across the midlands making it the perfect chilled out end to the weekend. Muthers Recording Studio Rea Street, Digbeth A recording studio and rehearsal space, Muthers also hosts its own live music events in its conservatory. Fully equipped with a (very cheap) bar and pool table, these nights can also get pretty messy.

Brum Notes Magazine


Music Venues O2 Academy, Horsefair, Bristol Street, city centre One of the mainstays for national touring acts, expect the biggest names across all genres in the main room, while the smaller Academy 2 and Academy 3 play host to emerging stars or local talent. The weekly Propaganda indie club night on Fridays is a student favourite too.

Promoters Birmingham Promoters The city’s biggest independent promoters operating at venues across the city, Birmingham Promoters orchestrate cross-genre live music events, giving a platform to local talent and bringing in rising star touring bands from further afield. This Is Tmrw Formed in 2006 and made up of DJs, producers and musicians, the This Is Tmrw collective has brought acts such as Foals, Yuck, Drenge, Splashh and Casio Kids to Birmingham. Generally found at the Hare & Hounds. Leftfoot Based out of the Bull’s Head and Hare & Hounds, Leftfoot, host underground DJs and soulful live acts from across the world, recently including the likes of Julio Bashmore, Gaslamp Killer, Jackmaster and Mount Kimbie.

Peace Four boys from outside the city, Peace exploded after their Bblood demo went viral. Quickly snapped up by Columbia Records (though only on the proviso that a billboard with the words ‘What the F*ck Birmingham?’ emblazoned across the boys’ faces be erected on Digbeth High Street), Peace went on to release one of the most highly acclaimed debut albums of the year, In Love, and enamoured festival crowds across Europe. Listen to: Bloodshake, 1998. Swim Deep Hot on their heels were Swim Deep who produce shimmery and summery pop tunes and have amassed a completely devoted fanbase across the country. Having toured with the likes of Spector and Two Door Cinema Club, Swim Deep remain fiercely loyal to their city. Listen to: Honey, She Changes the Weather. October 2013

The Glee Club, The Arcadian, Southside Originally opened as a comedy club, it also provides a uniquely atmospheric live music venue, often focusing on folk-influenced or acousticleaning acts, with the likes of Laura Marling, Adele and Mumford & Sons having all graced the stage.

Catapult Club One of the city’s longest established live music outfits, having given early outings to global names such as Oasis and Kasabian and still acting as a stepping stone for countless local acts. PWS Taking credit for booking bands who have gone on to be incredibly successful including the likes of Editors, The Pigeon Detectives and The Twang, PWS work at a multitude of venues across the city, including putting together exciting local lineups at The Flapper. Capsule Pioneering, groundbreaking, eclectic, adventurous...the list of exciting sounding words that could be used to describe what Capsule do is almost endless. The brains behind the ear-melting Supersonic Festival and this year chosen to curate the opening season for the Library of Birmingham.

Troumaca Releasing arguably the best debut of the lot, Troumaca produce a completely unique mix of garage and RnB influenced tropicalia. Remaining staunchly in creative control of their own artwork and videos, Troumaca are signed to Gilles Peterson’s independent Brownswood Recordings label. Listen to: Layou, Gold, Women & Wine. JAWS Four youngsters producing beach-hued pop tunes, JAWS have been championed by the likes of Huw Stephens and The Guardian. Their successful Milkshake EP has just been released in Japan - look out for their best track, Gold and exciting tour announcements to come. Listen to: Gold, Stay In. Ones to Watch: DUMB play Pixies and Built to Spill-influenced grunge, Superfood offer simple, unique and catchy guitar music, Britpop-infused and with nods to early Blur. With a more experimental edge, Victories at Sea produce a delicious mix of indie and electronica, while Black Country four-piece Wide Eyed have garnered plenty of attention for their psychedelic shoegaze.

Photo by Jonathan Morgan

Recent Success Stories

Despite being home to some of the biggest selling bands in the world over the years (Black Sabbath, UB40, Duran Duran), Birmingham has seemingly not enjoyed the same kudos as other British cities when it comes to its shining musical lights. The spotlight has shined brightly on the city in recent months though thanks to some notable breakthrough acts.

The Institute, High Street, Digbeth Another hotspot for big name acts, The Institute is housed in an historic building, full of character and also offers three venues of varying sizes within its cavernous interior. Also home to regular club nights, including from the likes of Ec-lectricity and Cream.

Swim Deep

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We know you’ll be spending a good chunk of your student loan sampling Birmingham’s boozers, so you might as well make the most of it and stray off the beaten track once in a while to enjoy some of the city’s finest drinking holes. Hidden haunts, quirky pubs, and bars bustling with independent spirit all help add some real character to Birmingham’s nightlife scene. Here is our guide to some of the best out there.

Bars, pubs and nightlife Brewdog, John Bright Street, city centre A recent addition to John Bright Street, Brewdog is the shabby-chic bar run by the Scottish independent brewery of the same name. Beers aren’t the cheapest but if it’s taste and flavour you want then this is the place to be. Bar food is easier on the pocket and it’s now hosting some really fantastic live music events too. With hundreds of craft beers and interior design encapsulating the city’s industrial roots, it’s a striking place to kick back and relax or start your night out in style. Island Bar, Suffolk Street Queensway, city centre One of the Top 50 UK Bars according to the Independent on Sunday, Island Bar is a tropical paradise in the city centre and one of Brum’s most established hotspots for those looking to enjoy quality cocktails and a quality soundtrack. Keep your eye on the upstairs tiki bar for live music, while DJs and a cosy dancefloor keep the party vibe going downstairs. The Jekyll & Hyde, Steelhouse Lane, city centre Another hidden gem, this stylish bar offers quirky cocktails, film nights, retro quizzes, food-eating contests and soulful DJs, and also boasts a fairytale-themed courtyard and a renowned specialist gin parlour upstairs.

The Church Inn

The Prince of Wales, Alcester Road, Moseley This unassuming-looking traditional pub is a hive of activity in bustling Moseley, attracting a real melting pot of a crowd. Beyond the cosy main bar, stocked with a great range of beers, you’ll find an even cosier snug room, a cocktail lounge and then out the back is the biggest surprise of all – a vast beer garden, with undercover areas, tables and seats galore and even a tiki bar complete with real sand. No two nights are ever the same here. Talk Bar, The Priory Queensway, city centre This new addition to Birmingham’s indie scene is a subterranean late night bar and club, aimed purely at music fans. It’s perfectly located for BCU students too, and with drinks from £1, perfectly priced as well. Themed music nights, open mic, live sets, gig after-parties and drinks promos throughout the week make it an ideal addition to your social calendar. The Church Inn, Great Hampton Street, Hockley This traditional boozer was given a new lease of life earlier this year, with new owners and a complete boho refurb, while the inviting roof terrace is a real attraction too. Fantastic food from culinary adventurers Soul Food Project, expertly-crafted cocktails and a great range of ales and lagers, plus plenty of guilty pleasures playing over the soundsystem to get you dancing at weekends.

Brewdog

Cherry Reds, York Road, Kings Heath Intimate and sociable cafe-bar nestled in the bohemian outpost of York Road in Kings Heath. Enjoy wholesome grub by day and lovingly-poured drinks by night. Expect occasional cosy acoustic gigs too. Also, check out the brand new city centre sister venue on P42. The Plough, High Street, Harborne Competing for the title of ‘best beer garden in Birmingham,’ The Plough’s cleverly designed outdoor space is a winner in any weather. Within easy reach of the University of Birmingham, it attracts good crowds every night of the week, especially on quiz night or when offering deals on its tasty food. The Lord Clifden, Great Hampton Street, Hockley No mention of beer gardens in Brum is complete without reference to The Lord Clifden. The original ‘hidden gem’, this welcoming free house on the fringes of the Jewellery Quarter offers street art on the walls, international beers and a vast urban garden, complete with games, an al fresco bar, barbecues and plenty of special events. The Old Crown, High Street, Digbeth One of Birmingham’s oldest boozers, this timberframed pub dates back to the 14th century but continues to attract forward-thinking crowds and is a popular stop en route to gigs or club nights at the nearby Rainbow or Institute. The Sun on the Hill, Bennett’s Hill, city centre Based in the heart of the city centre, but with a real chilled-out ‘local’ vibe, this friendly pub has become a popular haunt for students and indie fiends, with its comfy leather sofas, vintage wallpaper, high ceilings, plus live DJs at weekends and free live music on Sundays. The gourmet hotdogs will fill you up too. Newly-opened sister venue The Sun at the Station in Kings Heath is well worth a visit as well. The Post Office Vaults, New Street, city centre It doesn’t get more underground than an actual basement bar. Tucked away underneath the busy New Street shopping strip, but a world away from the mainstream hustle and bustle. Their beer passport encouraging you to work your way through more than 200 speciality ales and lagers is a great challenge to set yourself at the start of term too.

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Brum Notes Magazine


Clubbing

Summer may have faded, and memories of Ibiza with it, but for the influx of new student freshers arriving in the city, it’s not all doom and gloom – and we’re about to show you why, with our quick guide to some of our favourite clubbing spots in Brum. Former University of Birmingham student Megan Wooldridge takes you on her very own club crawl.

Yeah okay, so the Broad Street strip can be a barrel of laughs with its numerous drinks deals and cheesy tunes. But you may well quickly grow tired of the parade of pink limos, devil horns and L-plates, so if you want to party with more discerning crowds and discover some of the more adventurous nights that Birmingham has to offer, fear not, Europe’s youngest city has you well covered.

sure to end up skanking the night away if you do end up checking this venue out.

Let’s start with The Rainbow Venues, one of the biggest independent hot spots in the quirky area of Digbeth. Resident Saturday night FACE will soon be celebrating its fourth birthday and entertains hundreds of clubbers every weekend with three rooms offering different genres of dance music. The Courtyard pumps out house and techno beats right through to the early morning, so it’s here that you’ll find the hardcore ravers. But they could also be skanking out to the heavy bass in the Cellar, in almost complete darkness with smoke machines and beats which seem to run throughout your whole body. However, there is a much less intense room for the people that just want a good ol’ fashioned dance, which is in the pub itself. Here, old school favourites are constant, with 90s hip hop, RnB, country classics, bashment and more. The new FACE autumn/winter season will include headline appearances from the likes of Apollonia, David Squillace and Heidi.

Heading a little bit out of the city centre also opens up a new world of nightlife adventures. The Bull’s Head in the heart of Moseley Village offers free entry club nights taking in house, funk, reggae, soul, rock, indie and disco every weekend, as well as cult favourite Jam Jah every Monday night, attracting people from across the city for a reggae session that will keep you going for the rest of the week. Just up the road, is the legendary Hare & Hounds in King’s Heath, which as well as being a must-visit for live music, also plays host to some of the most adventurous club nights in the city, from reggae, dub, funk and soul through to breakbeat, DnB and techno.

And a couple of streets up from there you’ll find Suki10c, a distinctively decorated venue complete with murals all over the exterior. Rap battles, DJ competitions, live dubstep all nighters and bangin’ tech nights make up the eclectic programme of events.

Just round the corner from The Rainbow, is hidden nightspot Spot*light. Start your weekend in style at its Digbeth Dining Club on Fridays, offering a fabulous variety of multicultural street foods set to a great soundtrack, guaranteeing great grub and top vibes. Another Spot*light favourite is the monthly Moschino Hoe, Versace Hottie, offering retro chic in the form of 90s hip hop, RnB and beyond, with old school urban rhythms and beats, Fresh Prince of Bel Air style. Reggae lovers are well served in Birmingham too, a city with a rich Jamaican heritage. Also in the Digbeth area, hidden away a few roads behind Digbeth coach station, is PST (People Stand Together), a one-of-a-kind, maze-like venue specialising in weekend nights of reggae and dub. Main attractions include the rooftop terrace, a smoking area with DJs from across the globe, soundsystems and a bar with some of the friendliest staff around.

FACE

October 2013

More of a house fan? Not a problem, Birmingham’s underground scene also caters for those of you that like to pull all-nighters. Just a few streets behind the renowned Custard Factory lies Lab 11, a venue that promises to bring the underground sound back to Birmingham. Hosting a variety of different house, grime and dubstep nights, you’re

Lab 11

35


Library of Birmingham Photo by Lee Allen

It’s not just boozing and bands to enjoy in Birmingham, the city is awash with cultural gems as well, so whether you’re looking for somewhere to impress the parents next time they visit or would simply like to expand your artistic horizons, you’ll find plenty to inspire and entertain you in between lectures and hangovers. Arts editor Dan Cooper-Gavin outlines the key places for any aspiring culture vultures.

Arts & Culture Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery Chamberlain Square, city centre The grand Victorian edifice of BMAG houses a collection that has been growing for a century-and-a-half. Established for the betterment of Victorian-era Brummies, it specialises in fine art and works of historical significance. Expect to see: The Staffordshire Hoard, guided tours aplenty. Autumn highlight: Photorealism (from November 30) – a huge European retrospective of the deceptive painting movement.

The Drum Potters Lane, Aston Situated just north of the city centre in Aston, The Drum is the UK’s hub for black culture and arts. Located on the site of the fabled old Aston Hippodrome, the venue welcomes audiences from all backgrounds to enjoy a programme which spans theatre, comedy, visual art and more. Expect to see: Uproarious theatre; black-history photo archives. Autumn highlight: The March (October 10) – a screening of the Denzel Washington-voiced documentary commemorating the 50th anniversary of Martin Luther King’s March on Washington. Eastside Projects Heath Mill Lane, Digbeth A stone’s throw from Digbeth’s wonderful Custard Factory complex, Eastside Projects is an uncompromising artist-run space that opens four afternoons a week. Not ones for pandering to the mainstream, EP present an edifying programme of cutting-edge contemporary fare. Expect to see: A public space influenced by a Peruvian fool’s-gold crystal. Autumn highlight: Haze and Fog (open now, until November 16) – Beijing artist Cao Fei’s fresh take on the zombie-movie genre, with the tepid drudgery of modern life accounting for the death of the soul. Electric Cinema Station Street, city centre The oldest working cinema in the country, The Electric is a genuine local and national treasure. Tucked away behind New Street station, it runs an expertly-assembled programme combining on-the-money obscurities with the pick of the mainstream, resplendent in its restored Art Deco surrounds. Expect to see: Cult horror seasons, sofa seats with waiter service. 36

Autumn highlight: The Let’s Go Adventure Screening Tour (November 9) – a double-header of short films by comedian Josie Long.

Grand Union Minerva Works, Fazeley Street, Digbeth The Minerva Works complex is a monument to contemporary art’s gradual takeover of Digbeth’s disused factories, with Unit 19 being home to Grand Union. Another cutting-edge, artist-run facility, eight purpose-built studios run alongside the project space’s inspirational programme of shows and events. Expect to see: Wilful abstraction, broken language, corrupted data. Autumn highlight: And The Heavens Cried (open now, until October 27) – a multimedia career retrospective of the maverick performance artist, sculptor and poet Bob Parks. Ikon Oozells Square, city centre Ikon has been bringing contemporary art to the people of Brum for almost half a century, and has been installed in the salubrious neo-gothic Oozells Street Board School since the late 90s. Its two floors host a rotating programme of installations, as well as a dedicated itinerary of public workshops, tours and talks. Expect to see: Brum’s only specialist art bookshop, Martin Creed’s sound installation in the lift. Autumn highlight: Reporting Back (open now, until November 10) – works by Birmingham painter Hurvin Anderson, characterised by their yearning dislocation. Library of Birmingham Centenary Square, city centre Brum’s glittering new £189 million public library is far more than a repository of books – it’s also a major new cultural hub for the city. Pioneering local promoters Capsule are in charge of the opening programme of events at the library, with the Discovery Season presenting visitors with a vast range of daring yet accessible works. Expect to see: Art and creativity at every turn, lots and lots of books. Autumn highlight: The Library of Lost Books (November 6-24) – discarded volumes from Brum’s old Central Library, repurposed by a nationwide group of artists and printmakers. Mac Cannon Hill Park, Edgbaston Installed in Cannon Hill Park, a stone’s throw from

Edgbaston Cricket Ground, the Mac has been presenting all manner of artsy shows, workshops, screenings and performances to Brummies of all ages for 50 years. Priding itself on the broad range of its programme, it reopened three years ago following a lengthy redevelopment. Expect to see: Hands-on family craft events; exhibitions curated by local youngsters. Autumn highlight: Monkey Bars (October 23) – an emotionally arresting show, with adult actors using dialogue taken verbatim from snippets of interviews with primary-school children. Vivid Projects Minerva Works, Fazeley Street, Digbeth Another inspirational element of Brum’s contemporary art scene, Vivid Projects is the successor to the acclaimed VIVID centre, running a vibrant, socially-conscious programme with a primary focus on video and performance. Expect to see: Feminist punk weekends, Black Panther Party evenings. Autumn highlight: Slide Tape (October 5-November 16) – an extensive reappraisal of pre-digital audiovisual work, in collaboration with Loughborough University. The Rep Centenary Square, city centre Next door to the Library of Birmingham in Centenary Square, the current Rep building, built in the early 70s, has had a radical refit to keep up with its shiny new neighbour. The Rep draws a discerning crowd for high-profile touring productions, and is also heavily involved in promoting new work. Expect to see: Alan Bennett, emerging local talent. Autumn highlight: Tartuffe (November 1-16) – The Fast Show’s Mark Williams stars in an English-language version of Molière’s legendary farce. Ort Gallery Moseley Road, Balsall Heath An artist-run space in the Grade II listed Old Print Works, just south of the city centre in Balsall Heath. The gallery was conceived as both a showcase for emerging talent and as a project to engage with the multicultural inner-city locale. Expect to see: Thought-provoking sociopolitics, Russian classes in the cafe downstairs. Autumn highlight: Suck The Living Labour (open now, until October 16) – a radical examination of the age of austerity’s impact on young and old alike. Brum Notes Magazine


Still places available for this year! APPLY NOW!

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AUTUMN OPEN EVENINGS Weds 2nd Oct Weds 6th Nov Weds 4th Dec 5-7pm

Courses for Sept 2014 Introduction to Music Music Performance Music Technology: > Music Production > Sound Engineering Music Business Artist Development Music Teacher Training

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BOOK NOW! www.accesstomusic.ac.uk 0800 28 18 42

October 2013

the UK’s leading popular music college

37


Swim Deep Photo by Andy Hughes

LIVE

SWIM DEEP Birmingham Town Hall 20/09/13

It’s less than four months since Swim Deep played a sell-out show at The Institute in Digbeth, so it’s a complete testament to their hometown fans that tonight we find ourselves at only a shade under capacity. Opening up in the gorgeous setting is London’s Wolf Alice, who play capably and to a pretty rapturous response. It’s not the most revolutionary sound in the world and at times, lead singer Ellie Rowsell’s vocals are a little indistinguishable, but they don’t half warm the crowd up for their headliners. Having released their debut album, Where the Heaven Are We, this July, Swim Deep show it off almost in its entirety (less only Colour Your Ways). Highlights are the pop gems Honey and Crush and their cover of Cyndi Lauper’s Girls Just Wanna Have Fun which sounds almost as if they penned it themselves for this very occasion. The boys are joined on stage by a homeless choir (The Choir With No Name) for Soul Trippin’ and She Changes the Weather, the final two songs of the set, and, though in all honesty they don’t add much to the acoustics of the tunes, they highlight the Birmingham darlings’ desire to treat their hometown to something a bit special. Both 38

bands tumble on stage for a euphoric encore of Tassle Man (a song written by Austin and Ellie) and finally, King City. All in all, though perhaps not quite as wholeheartedly jubilant as their Institute show (and with a couple of elements still to work on – Austin’s guitar needs turning up and Cav’s backing vocals tuning up), it’s certainly a night to remember and a beautiful illustration of the progress Swim Deep have made as a live band. Amy Sumner

The Ravens The Roadhouse, Stirchley 30/08/13

Tonight’s bill is a little confusing. It’s never wise to bill a small troupe of amateur gangster rappers after an introspective acoustic set, courtesy of Andy Lawrence Flynn. Fonzo and crew’s hip hop alter egos, trigger-happy lyrics, and the need to introduce themselves using way too many AKAs seems as impractical as their indoor sunglasses. In contrast, Flynn’s personal set of folk songs seems right at home in The Roadhouse. With a voice as soulful as his shirt is all-out snazzy, Flynn has the full attention of audience and sets a modest and serious tone to the gig, which then confusingly switches to guns, Hennessy and bitches, which receives more laughter than awkward applause.

Thankfully Birmingham’s new rockabilly outfit The Ravens are nothing short of astounding. With a more-than-capable vocalist in Stuart Davies and a lead player, Adam Higgins, tighter than his own suspenders, this live performance certainly doesn’t seem like their headline debut. With cluster-plucking solos, shuffle rhythms, and a classic surf-strat tone, the only thing missing from The Raven’s rock‘n’roll identify is a tonne of grease and leather. After paying homage to their origins by performing a cover of Little Richard’s Slippin’ and Slidin’, they play their debut single Let Sleeping Dogs Lie. By the end of their set they’re blurring the lines between rock‘n’roll and psychedelia with wah pedals, spaghetti western trumpet tracks and bluesy guitar solos, but for intents and purposes, The Ravens bring rock‘n’roll home to The Roadhouse. Guy Hirst

Cassette Store Day#1 Swordfish Records, Birmingham 07/09/13

Hipster format du jour or something that’s best left in the glovebox of old Ford Fiestas? Whatever the merits of the cassette tape’s somewhat bizarre resurgence, if it leads more people to their local record shop then let’s rewind it like its 1984. The mighty Brum Notes Magazine


Swordfish Records celebrated the inaugural International Cassette Store Day with a suitably C60 sized in-store gig. Oliver Rudge impressed on the soaring Blue Neon whilst Drakelow made their bid for stardom with festival favourite-in-waiting Swallowing Diamonds. Tom Peel lived the brand by strapping a twin tape player to his chest and mixing it old skool, paving the way for Cannon Street’s sweet sibling harmonies. Bonus points for recording five unique tapes featuring two different tracks each on one side and a special message on the other. Bless ‘em. Finally, Midnight Bonfires wrapped things up nicely. Opening number Darkness Falls was like being rocked to sleep by a hairy angel whilst the last one of their set sounded like Nirvana having a jam with The Faces round a campfire. That’s an impressive sound whatever format you record it on, eh? Daron Billings

Brum Notes presents Layers O2 Academy 3, Birmingham 20/09/13

Well, this was Layers’ night – in both name and fact. End of. But the undercard itself was remarkable. Mutes: a lone indie kid painting the swirling sound pictures inside his head live on stage, this was barking mad.

October 2013

Oliver Rudge Photo by Wayne Fox

But touched with jangling genius. Dead Sea Skulls: imagine a handsome troll dressed as a Peaky Blinder, on drums – standing – and singing like Jerry Lee Lewis. Imagine posthardcore guitar and bass played millimetretight around him. Imagine one of the most striking acts I have seen in years. But of course: Layers. Visibly stoked to be here for their EP launch, emotions were high, and their trademark soaring harmonies had a raw sincerity tonight that readily raised the hairs on the back of the neck. But nothing about this band is or was remotely ‘emo’. This was muscular, metallic soul – fronted by a born showman with Olympic-class lungs.

And by christ can that lad pull off a false ending to a song. Though he ended up ripsliding on the bar at one stage, this performance was perhaps less about the vocalist’s acrobatics, and more about the music. Cue a string section for the set closer. Now that took nerve – and real ambition. At least four of their tracks had “national airplay” written all over them, and their cover of Skunk Anansie’s Weak could easily be their breakthrough single. Seriously. Is it soul punk? RnB/metal fusion? Who knows. But if they keep on this track, many more people will know the name Layers. Edward Ling

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EDITOR'S PICK STYLE STUDENT STYLE GUIDE Hello student loan! Goodbye student loan… It’s that time of year when Birmingham inherits a myriad of new young people about to begin their journey towards adulthood by way of making new friends, struggling with their bank accounts and suffering from severe hangovers. In order to make this transition a little easier, we’d like to provide you with an introduction to the best and most popular retail stores in the city, both high street and independent.

COW

Digbeth, B5

Size?

Autograph Menswear

Illustration by Mo Mularczyk

Lower Temple Street, B2

P&CO

Ethel Street, B2

pandcoclothing.co.uk

TOPSHOP Bullring, B5

Zara

Bullring, B5

Urban Outfitters Corporation St, B2

COS

Liquor Store

Bullring, B5

Great Western Arcade, B2

Provide

The Custard Factory, B9

ATOO

Ethel Street, B2

New Look

Bullring, B5

HYPE

justhype.co.uk

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Frock On Vintage

frockonvintage.co.uk

Brum Notes Magazine


birmingham street style KS photography by Sinéad O’Callaghan

JOHAL, 19, DANCER Johal is wearing shoes from Nike Town London, Topshop denim dungarees and earrings, a patterned jacket from Frock On Vintage, a borrowed tie-dye t-shirt, an Urban Outfitters bowler hat and a bag from H&M. His style icon is Kyle Monaco and his favourite retailer in Birmingham is Topshop.

XIAOLU, 24, STUDENT Xiaolu is wearing Nike trainers, Topshop trousers, a Cheap & Chic jumper with Chanel glasses and bag. Her style icon is Rihanna and her favourite retailer in Birmingham is Selfridges.

HOLLY, 21, ART AND DESIGN GRADUATE Holly is wearing Clarks tan ankle boots, a printed Primark dress and cat patterned jumper, a vintage leather bag and Givenchy glasses. Her style icon is Victoria Beckham and her favourite retailer in Birmingham is H&M.

JOE, 20, ALL SAINTS STYLIST Joe’s asymmetric tweed coat, skinny jeans and brogues are all from All Saints, his watch is by Vacheron Constantin and his sunglasses are new season Ray-Bans. Joe gets his style inspiration from following the latest fashion week trends and his favourite retailer in Birmingham is (of course) All Saints. October 2013

STACEY, 24, COCKTAIL BARTENDER Stacey wears shoes from Dr Martens, H&M jeans, a vintage blouse, a khaki coat from Warehouse and Primark jewellery. Stacey is inspired by menswear trends and British tailoring. Her favourite retailer in Birmingham is Autograph.

JAY, 22, ALL SAINTS STYLIST Jay’s creeper brogues, waxed skinny jeans and shirt are from All Saints and his vintage leather mac is from COW. His style icon is Russell Brand and his favourite retailer in Birmingham is (surprise, surprise) All Saints.

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lasan Dakota Buildings, James St, St Pauls Sq, B3 1SD www.lasan.co.uk 0121 212 3664

As far away as you can get from the places in the Balti Triangle, Lasan shot to fame when it won Gordon Ramsay’s Best Local Restaurant F Word competition a few years back. And judging by how busy the place was on a moist Monday evening, Lasan fever’s still alive and well. Las an elevates Indian cuisine to a-naan-ther level, taking as much pride in the source of its ingredients as it does in the cooking and presentation. After a Cobra beer, some complimentary poppadoms served with three homemade dips and an amuse-bouche of a potato fritter with tamarind, we settled down for starters. I plumped for Burra Kebab, aged Herefordshire beef marinated in hung yogurt and mustard oil. It’s all too easy in Indian cooking to obliterate the flavour of the meat but the iron rich beefiness came through like an amplified moo, with the light char on the outside yielding to tender, juicy and perfectly spiced chunks of beef.

Cuisine:

Indian

Price:

Around £40 per head (3 courses)

Service: Atmosphere: Food: Overall:

My other half had the soft shell Devonshire crab cooked in crisp chilli batter. Again, spice was the guest not the star, giving the subtle crab flavours plenty of room to scuttle across the taste buds. A second plate of amuse-bouche, including a spinach and potato cake and grilled cube of paneer, was delicious enough to make me consider becoming a vegetarian again. Five minutes in the company of the Lamb Lababdar soon dispelled that idea. Wiltshire Downs free range lamb cooked three ways, it offered a trio of unique flavours and textures, the star of the show being a melt-in-the-mouth confit of shoulder

VENUE WATCH: cherry reds

cooked slowly for 10 hours and served with a jus spiced with nutmeg and cinnamon. Little dots of sauce on the plate added additional bursts of flavour, warming but not blunting the palate. My dining companion landed an impressively sized loin of cod, again cooked to saltily moist perfection and as fresh as an ocean breeze. The service was attentive and friendly throughout with our knowledgeable waiter only too willing to explain the various components of each course. Presentation was, as you’d expect, exceptional with each dish served on black slate, laid out to make it a feast for the eyes too. With little room left, pudding had to be shared but the lemon posset was so light and tangy that it was consumed with gusto. Pop to the loo here and you’ll see walls lined with photos of the owners accepting an impressive range of awards. After a meal this good it’s not hard to see why. Daron Billings

88-90 John Bright Street, Birmingham B1 1BN

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It’s opening night and the selection of fine drinks at the new Cherry Reds on John Bright Street is dizzying. There are around 60 different bottled craft beers in the fridges, and more on tap from the west (Anchor) and east (Brooklyn) coasts of the USA. For those who like their local breweries, there are Marston’s and Backyard Brewhouse from the West Midlands. And a special in the form of Hardknott Queboid (8%). And still more. The décor is equally attractive. Retro chairs and comfy leather sofas are arranged to form seating areas, some that are intimate and others that are more suited to bigger groups – or where you can make friends out of the

0121 643 5716  

strangers you are sat next to. This makes for a friendly atmosphere and there are smiling faces everywhere you look. No doubt the quality of the beer helps with this too. Returning a few days later to see if the new venue is as good as those first night memories suggest, we’re soon sat upstairs on a cream corner sofa with a Fentiman’s Cherry Tree Cola (they also have a selection of ‘adult’ soft drinks), while sunlight is streaming through the window. True to the ethos of a good cafe-bar, they’ve certainly nailed it as a place that is just as good on a weekday afternoon as on a weekend night. Brum Notes Magazine Ben Calvert


23 BENNETTS HILL, BIRMINGHAM B2 5QP

SIX OF THE BEST…

student eats urban pie

bullring

There are times when only a decent pie will really fill the gap...when that time comes head down to Urban Pie near the Bullring. On top of a mouth watering range of fillings, all freshly baked in-store every day, you can also pick up half price pies after 5pm. Just in time to get back to digs to write that essay then...ahem.

big wok

& THE BEST IN LIVE MUSIC!

southside

If you want to eat Chinese food until it comes out of your eyeballs pop along to this Chinatown institution. An all you can eat buffet place offering up to 90 dishes at a time and what it may occasionally lack in quality it more than makes up for in quantity. Priced just £5.99 from midday until 5pm.

bohemia

selly oak

A rare beacon for discerning diners among the cafs and pubs of Selly Oak. Specialising in modern British fine dining, this isn’t the spot for your usual cheap eats, but with three courses and wine for just £23 on Wednesdays, it’s the perfect place to splash out.

FOLLOW US @SUNONTHEHILL

50% STUDENT DISCOUNT THROUGHOUT THE MONTH OF OCTOBER, GET 50% OFF ANY FOOD ORDERS EITHER AT THE SUN ON THE HILL OR THE SUN AT THE STATION WHEN YOU PRESENT A VALID FORM OF STUDENT I.D!

university college city centre

If you fancy pushing the boat out a little, trainee chefs dish up three course meals for £26 in the evenings or just £8.50 at lunchtimes. Given that the meals include anything from Butter Poached Blue Lobster to Smoked Gressingham Duck this is a bit of a steal.

Minmin noodle bar Southside

WELCOME TO OUR NEW PUB!

MinMin Noodle Bar serves up superbly fresh meals and superbly affordable prices. Vast bowls of noodle soup will keep you filled up if you’re looking for a quick lunch, while stacks of spring rolls and piled-high stir fries make for a satisfying evening meal too.

the balti triangle

Have a sniff around Brum’s famous Balti Triangle (Sparkbrook, Balsall Heath, Moseley) and you’ll find some amazing food to suit any budget. Jyotis Vegetarian deserves an honourable mention, as does Adil’s, reportedly the first ever balti house. You can also take October your own2013 booze to many places.

DJs EVERY FRIDAY & SATURDAY LIVE MUSIC COMING SOON! 7 KINGS HEATH HIGH ST, BIRMINGHAM B14 7BB

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WHAT’S ON

KEY TO LISTINGS: M = LIVE MUSIC CN = CLUB NIGHT C = COMEDY

BIRMINGHAM: O2 Academy, Horsefair, Bristol St B1, 0844 4772000; The Institute, High St, Digbeth B5, 0844 2485037; NIA, King Edwards Rd B1, 0121 7804141; LG Arena, NEC, Solihull B40, 0121 7804141; The Flapper, Kingston Row B1, 0121 2362421; The Victoria, John Bright St B1, 0121 6339439; Hare & Hounds, High St, Kings Heath B14, 0121 4442081; The Actress & Bishop, Ludgate Hill B3, 0121 2367426; The Sunflower Lounge, Smallbrook Queensway B5, 0121 6327656; Symphony Hall, Broad St B1, 0121 7803333; Town Hall, Victoria Sq B3, 0121 7803333; Kitchen Garden Cafe, York Road, Kings Heath B14, 0121 4434725; Alexandra Theatre, Station St B1, 0844 8472302; Bull’s Head, St Marys Row, Moseley B13, 0121 2567777; Island Bar, Suffolk St B1, 0121 6325296; The Jam House, St Pauls Sq B3, 0121 2003030; Ort, Moseley Rd, Balsall Heath, B12; The Asylum, Hampton St, Hockley B19, 0121 2331109; The Rainbow, High St, Digbeth B12, 0121 7728174; Adam & Eve, Bradford St, Digbeth B12, 0121 6931500; The Rose Villa Tavern, Warstone Lane, B18, 0121 2367910; The Yardbird, Paradise Place B3, 0121 2122524; The Glee Club, The Arcadian, Hurst St B5, 0871 4720400; MAC, Cannon Hill Park B12, 0121 4463232; Nightingale, Kent St B5, 0121 6221718; Scruffy Murphys, The Priory Queensway B4, 0121 2362035; The Wagon & Horses, Adderley St, Digbeth B9, 0121 7721403; Lab11, Trent St B5, lab11.co.uk; The Moseley Arms, Ravenhurst St B12, 0121 7668467; Air, Heath Mill Lane B9, 0121 7666646; Suki10c, Bordesley Street B5; Gatecrasher, Broad St B15, 0121 633 1520

M M M M M M M M M C M M

C C

Tuesday, Oct 1 The Airborne Toxic Event Heights The Scribers

M O2 Academy 2

Birmingham

O2 Academy 3

Birmingham

Bull’s Head

Moseley

All details correct at time of going to press. Check with venues before setting out.

Lily and Meg Markville Salvation

Ort

Balsall Heath

O2 Academy 3

Birmingham

Out of Sanity

The Actress & Bishop The Institute

Birmingham

The Sunflower Lounge The Wagon & Horses Rainbow Warehouse The Institute

Birmingham

Birmingham

Evarose

Library of Birmingham O2 Academy 3

Birmingham

M

Frank Hamilton

The Institute

Birmingham

Daley

Hare & Hounds

Kings Heath

CN Hospitality

My Darling Clementine Stubborn Heart

Hare & Hounds

Kings Heath

CN Uproar Peace, Love

Bull’s Head

Moseley

The Rainbow

Birmingham

Doc Brown

The Glee Club

Birmingham

CN CN SumoSoundSystem

Hare & Hounds

Kings Heath

Thursday, Oct 3 No Age

Hare & Hounds

Kings Heath

CN

Bull’s Head

Moseley

Brum Notes Issue Launch Party with Cowboy + Tom Peel + Apollo’s Mob + Germ Andy Askins

Bull’s Head

Moseley

The Glee Club

Birmingham

The Glee Club

Birmingham

O2 Academy 2

Birmingham

Shappi Khorsandi

The Glee Club

Birmingham

O2 Academy 2

Birmingham

O2 Academy 3

Birmingham

The Institute

Birmingham

Bull’s Head

Moseley

C

The Drum

Aston

The Glee Club

Birmingham

The Glee Club

Birmingham

ing The Rude & Sexy Show Andy Askins Tony Law Saturday, Oct 5

Botwown

Strawberry Blondes

China Rats

& Unity Face x 2:31

C

M Foxes M Miles Kane M CN Freestyle with Yesk-

M M M C

Presents Furney An Evening with Knicker Bocker Corey (5 Hour Set) Andy Askins Sunday, Oct 6 Impericon Never Say Die! Tour 2013 Romeo’s Daughter

M M M

Birmingham

BIrmingham Birmingham Birmingham

O2 Academy 3

Birmingham

R M Hubbert

Hare & Hounds

Kings Heath

Barbara Nice

The Glee Club

Birmingham

Monday, Oct 7 Ben Montague

O2 Academy 3

Birmingham

Bull’s Head

Birmingham

Tuesday, Oct 8 Black Spiders

O2 Academy 3

Birmingham

Laura Cantrell

The Glee Club

Birmingham

Johnny Flynn & The Sussex Wit Laura Mvula

The Institute

Birmingham

The Institute

Birmingham

M CN Jam Jah

M 44

info@ brumnotes.com 

M M

Wednesday, Oct 2 Rise of Birmingham

Friday, Oct 4 Diamond Head

C C

M M

Want your gig or club night listed in our monthly guide? Send details to:

Brum Notes Magazine


M M

Landshapes

Hare & Hounds

Kings Heath

Hare & Hounds

Kings Heath

C

Nadine Shah & Cloud Boat JQ Comedy night

Birmingham

C

Amateur Transplants

Rose Villa Tavern The Glee Club

Wednesday, Oct 9 The Quireboys

M The First M San Cisco M CN Out Da Box Presents

M M M M C C M M

Exodus Freedom Fighters Sound System Thursday, Oct 10 Passenger

Birmingham

O2 Academy 2

Birmingham

The Flapper

Birmingham

The Institute

Birmingham

Bull’s Head

Moseley

O2 Academy

Birmingham

Goldie Lookin Chain

O2 Academy 2

Birmingham

Active Child

Hare & Hounds

Kings Heath

Darden Smith

Hare & Hounds

Kings Heath

Daniel Townes

The Glee Club

Birmingham

Joe Lycett

The Glee Club

Birmingham

Friday, Oct 11 Sleeping with Sirens

O2 Academy

Birmingham Birmingham

M

Arrows of Love

M M M M M M

Blue Nation

The Actress & Bishop The Adam & Eve The Flapper

Kate Nash

The Institute

Birmingham

The Jim Jones Revue

The Institute

Birmingham

Beans on Toast

The Rainbow

Birmingham

Endorphins

The Victoria

Birmingham

Charles Bradley & His Extraordinaires Seams

Hare & Hounds

Kings Heath

Bull’s Head

Moseley

The Cross

Moseley

Rose Villa Tavern Suki10c

Birmingham

The Rainbow

Birmingham

Hare & Hounds

Kings Heath

Ort

Balsall Heath

Hightower

M Misty’s Big Adventure M CN Hot Wax present Hot Potato

CN Mixmaster Morris CN Operation Hardcore CN Hot Wax Vs Regulate C C C M M M

Club Night Emily Rose – Confessions of a Rabbi’s Daughter Daniel Townes

CN

Birmingham

Birmingham

Rose Villa Tavern The Rainbow

Birmingham

CN CN Killer Wave Daniel Townes C

Hare & Hounds

Kings Heath

Bull’s Head

Moseley

The Glee Club

Birmingham

B. Bar

Hare & Hounds

Kings Heath

Birmingham

A Sunday Session

The Actress & Bishop The Flapper

Vance Joy

Hare & Hounds

Kings Heath

Rough Works

The Glee Club

Birmingham

Monday, Oct 14 Babyshambles

O2 Academy

Birmingham

Max Raptor

The Flapper

Birmingham

Splashh

The Institute

Birmingham

Tunng

Hare & Hounds

Kings Heath

Jam Jah

Bull’s Head

Birmingham

Tuesday, Oct 15 Lawson

O2 Academy

Birmingham

Marc O’Reilly

Hare & Hounds

Kings Heath

Spector

Hare & Hounds

Kings Heath

Wednesday, Oct 16 Volbeat

O2 Academy

Birmingham

The Last Carnival

O2 Academy 3

Birmingham

Brother And Bones

The Institute

Birmingham

Lanterns of the Lake

Hare & Hounds

Kings Heath

Pins

Bull’s Head

Moseley

Thursday, Oct 17 Rudimental

O2 Academy

Birmingham

Half Man Half Biscuit

O2 Academy 2

Birmingham

Field Harmonics

Birmingham

The Cat Empire

The Actress & Bishop The Institute

Tich

The Institute

Birmingham

Nordic Giants

Hare & Hounds

Kings Heath

World Unlimited Presents Beatie Wolfe Mark Nelson

Hare & Hounds

Kings Heath

The Glee Club

Birmingham

Ort

Balsall Heath Birmingham

Reaside

The Actress & Bishop The Flapper

Zervas & Pepper

The Glee Club

Birmingham

Damien Dempsey

The Institute

Birmingham

Everything Everything

The Institute

Birmingham

Space

The Institute

Birmingham

Great Uncles

The Cross

Moseley

Stepback Sessions Tour Shadow City presents Karma Kid Fidget Halloween Special Leftfoot & Under The Counter Present Mala

The Institute

Birmingham

The Rainbow

Birmingham

The Rainbow Garden Hare & Hounds

Birmingham

CN Face presents Tough Luck Records Old School Disco II

M M M C M M M M CN M M M M M M M M M M M M M M M C

The Glee Club

Birmingham

Roisin Conaty

The Glee Club

Birmingham

Saturday, Oct 12 Buzzard Lope

Ort

Balsall Heath

The Actress & Bishop The Adam & Eve The Flapper

Birmingham

Various Venues

Birmingham

Gatecrasher

Birmingham

M M M M M M CN

O2 Academy

Birmingham

CN

Rainbow Warehouse

Birmingham

CN

Weatherbird Hellkrusher

The Rattlin Doors M OxjamBrum Takeover M CN Gatecrasher 5th

CN

Birmingham

CN JuQebox

Birthday MC Trigga’s Birthday Bash 2013 10:31 Autumn

October 2013

Birmingham Birmingham

M M

CN

Back Bar Blues Club with Blue Murda Sunday, Oct 13 Contact

Friday, Oct 18 Robert Lane Revolver

Birmingham

Birmingham

Birmingham

Birmingham

Kings Heath

45


CN Freestyle Mark Nelson C M M M M

Bull’s Head

Moseley

The Glee Club

Birmingham

Saturday, Oct 19 Chris Cleverley

Ort

Balsall Heath

Bowling for Soup

O2 Academy

Birmingham

Zedd

O2 Academy 2

Birmingham

Among the Echoes

Birmingham

M M M

Plastic Factory

The Actress & Bishop The Flapper

Deaf Havana

The Institute

Birmingham

Spectrals

Birmingham

M

Johnny Kowalski & the Sexy Weirdos Face 4th Bday Warehouse Rave OOOOOO Look

The Sunflower Lounge The Wagon & Horses The Rainbow Bull’s Head

Moseley

The Glee Club

Birmingham

CN

CN Mark Nelson C M M M M M

Birmingham

BIrmingham Birmingham

M M M C M M M M M M C C M

Kings Heath

Prince of Wales The Cross

Moseley

CN Antics CN Freestyle with Jamtidy Bull’s Head

Moseley

C M M

The Glee Club

Birmingham

Saturday, Oct 26 Attila Vural

Ort

Balsall Heath Birmingham

M M M

Travis

Library of Birmingham O2 Academy

The Feeling

O2 Academy 2

Birmingham

Soldier

Birmingham

M M M M

Delta Sleep

The Actress & Bishop The Flapper

Medusa Rising

The Flapper

Birmingham

Tom Odell

The Institute

Birmingham

Goldheart Assembly

The Sunflower Lounge The Adam & Eve The Rainbow

Birmingham

Hare & Hounds

Kings Heath

Hare & Hounds

Kings Heath

Bull’s Head

Moseley

The Glee Club

Birmingham

Library of Birmingham O2 Academy 3

Birmingham

Birmingham

Bring to Light

Johnny Get The Gun

O2 Academy 3

Birmingham

The MP2 Band

Birmingham

My Great Affliction

The Actress & Bishop The Flapper

Roachford

The Glee Club

Birmingham

The Glee Club

Birmingham

The Institute

Birmingham

Bull’s Head

Birmingham

CN John Fothergill C

The Institute

Birmingham

Hare & Hounds

Kings Heath

Sunday, Oct 27 Bring to Light

The Glee Club

Birmingham

Wednesday, Oct 23 London Grammar

O2 Academy 2

Birmingham

Goo Goo Dolls

The Institute

Birmingham

Ferocious Dog

Hare & Hounds

Kings Heath

Steve Hughes

The Glee Club

Birmingham

Birmingham

Tuesday, Oct 22 Aluna George Catfish & The Bottlemen Daniel Sloss

O2 Academy 3

Birmingham

Kunt & The Gang

The Flapper

Birmingham

Sub Focus

The Institute

Birmingham Birmingham

Circawaves

The Sunflower Lounge Hare & Hounds

The Monochrome Set

Hare & Hounds

Kings Heath

Hal Cruttenden

The Glee Club

Birmingham

John Fothergill

The Glee Club

Birmingham

Royal Blood

Friday, Oct 25 Bring to Light

CN Halloween Afterparty CN CN CN

Thursday, Oct 24 Voodoo Six

Kings Heath

M

M M M M

Clean Bandit The Blackout

The Institute

Birmingham

Broken Witt Rebels

The Rainbow

Birmingham

Bring to Light

Birmingham

M

Brothers of Caedmon

M

Coasts

The Rainbow Warehouse The Sunflower Lounge The Victoria

Birmingham

Birmingham

All Nighter The Haunting Street Party Chicks Dig Jerks’ Halloween Hellraiser Pressure Drop The House Of The Dead Halloween Party Jam Hott

Birmingham

Birmingham

Birmingham Birmingham

M M

The Famous Class

M M

A Sunday Session

The Actress & Bishop The Flapper

The Nightingales

Hare & Hounds

Kings Heath

Monday, Oct 28 Jake Bugg

O2 Academy

Birmingham

Bull’s Head

Birmingham

Tuesday, Oct 29 Jake Bugg

O2 Academy

Birmingham

Portico Quartet

The Glee Club

Birmingham

Euros Childs

Hare & Hounds

Kings Heath

Wednesday, Oct 30 Emma’s Imagination

The Glee Club

Birmingham

John Wizards

Hare & Hounds

Kings Heath

Nomad Mostly Comedy Paul Foot

Ort

Balsall Heath

A.C. Thomas

M CN Jam Jah M M M M M C C

Birmingham

Moseley

& Kinatural John Fothergill

Birmingham

Library of Birmingham O2 Academy 2

46

Hare & Hounds

Goodnight Lenin

O2 Academy

Monday, Oct 21

C

Susan Cadogan

Sunday, Oct 20 Public Image Ltd

Ghostpoet M Nina Nesbitt M CN Jam Jah

M M

M M

M M M M C C

Birmingham

Birmingham

The Glee Club

Birmingham

Thursday, Oct 31 Suede

O2 Academy

Birmingham

Vista Chino

The Institute

Birmingham

The Crummies

Birmingham

Ozric Tentacles

The Sunflower Lounge Hare & Hounds

Ian Moore

The Glee Club

Birmingham

Jarred Christmas

The Glee Club

Birmingham

Kings Heath

Birmingham Brum Notes Magazine


October 2013

47


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Brum Notes Magazine


Brum Notes Magazine October 2013  

The October 2013 edition of Brum Notes Magazine. This month's issue is a student special featuring an insider guide to Birmingham. Plus, int...

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