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H T I W M A H G N I M R I B G N I R O L P X E
S E I R O L CA Plus: a look Inside the region’s most inspirational new venue Around Wolverhampton with THE LINES
Win comedy festival tickets and cases of beer ALSO INSIDE: FUN LOVIN’ CRIMINALS / JONSI / MODIFIED TOY ORCHESTRA
Brum Notes Magazine: Issue 12, September 2010 Brum Notes Magazine The Moseley Exchange 149-153 Alcester Road Moseley Birmingham B13 8JP email@example.com To advertise contact: advertising@ brumnotes.com Editor: Sean O’Muir Contributors Words: Tom Pell, Adam Smith, Ross Cotton, Lyle Bignon, Andy Roberts, Daron Billings, Richard Moynihan Pictures: Drw-Images, Gobinder Jhitta, Ian Dunn Design: Ryan Killeen, Andy Aitken, Sleepy Design 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. Twitter @BrumNotesMag Facebook search ‘Brum Notes Magazine’ www.brumnotes.com
The view from the balcony with final preparations underway for this month’s opening of the HMV Institute in Digbeth. See more on p4.
contents NEWS 4-6: Enjoy an exclusive peak inside the new HMV Institute venue and catch up on what you need to know this month. COMPETITION 6: Win tickets to the Birmingham Comedy Festival as well as fine local beer. FEATURES 7: PROFILE: Supersonic We get the lowdown on next month’s Supersonic Festival, one of the country’s premier alternative music showpieces. 8-9: Fun Lovin’ Criminals The world’s coolest band are back and they want to talk about laundry. No seriously, they do.
10: Jónsi The Sigur Rós frontman on going it alone. 13: Modified Toy Orchestra We talk to the humans behind the toys about their ongoing mission to create joy-filled electronic pop. 14-17: Calories Birmingham’s finest poppunkers spill the beans on their impending second album before taking us on a tour of their favourite haunts. 18-19: The Lines Not to be outdone, the Black Country indie kids show us the sights of Wolverhampton. REVIEWS 20-21: Live
The summer may seem quiet for gigs, but we made the best of it with Goodnight Lenin, Tunng and more. FOOD & DRINK 23: The Soul Food Column Our favourite rock and roll chefs serve up their recipe of the month plus their guide to what’s hot in foodie land. 24: Drink of the Month Island Bar experts show you the best ways to enjoy rum. 24: Reader offer Going to a gig? Well have a drink on us first. GIG GUIDE 28-31: Gig season is starting to go into overdrive so find out where to enjoy it.
INSTITUTE TO OPEN ITS DOORS AGAIN THIS MONTH Landmark Digbeth venue ready after £4million facelift These exclusive pictures give a first glimpse of the revamped Institute building in the heart of Digbeth, following its multi-million pound overhaul. As the images show, many original features of the historic former
chapel have been preserved and enhanced ahead of the re-opening of the venue – renamed the HMV Institute - later this month.
Around £4 million has been spent on restoring the iconic 100-year-old building and bringing it bang up to date as a 21st century club and concert venue. The Digbeth High Street landmark, formerly known as The Sanctuary, has been closed for two years but now boasts three concert rooms, including the 1,500 capacity main auditorium with seated balconies, the former Barfly area will be known as The Library catering for 600 gig-goers, while a third top floor venue The Temple will hold 300. There are also additional club rooms and a stunning VIP bar area boasting an outdoor terrace with eye-catching city centre views.
An eclectic mix of names has already been lined up to appear over the coming months, including local boy Fyfe Dangerfield and legendary Stourbridge rockers Ned’s Atomic Dustbin, as well as Mark Ronson, Kelis, Kate Nash, Hurts, The Drums, We Are Scientists, Tinie Tempah and KRS-One. Club nights are also returning to the venue, including the official launch night on September 18, which sees the unveiling of Adventures in Stereo in Birmingham, presenting the resurrection of the legendary indie club night PANIC!, combined with the all new Klub Kerrang alongside the likes of local heroes Chicks Dig Jerks and other special guests. Dance pioneers Eclectricity will also be taking over the venue for a series of postsummer parties, hosting the likes of Joy Orbison, Annie Mac, Roni Size and Chase & Status. For full details and line-ups visit www.hmvinstitute.com.
Pictures by Drw-Images
appy days for the civic Wolverhampton’s top gig venue the Civic Hall has joined the iPhone revolution, launching an app allowing fans to buy tickets straight from their phone. The Wolves Civic app has now gone live following five months in development and venue bosses are promising further developments soon.
Twitter links, ticket alerts and embedded video are also thought to be on their way, as are iPad and iPod Touch compatible updates. Development is also underway on an Android app for Blackberry and other smart phone users. Search ‘Wolves Civic’ in the iTunes App store.
At the moment users can see the gig listing for the next 12 weeks, browse by date, by venue and by genre and with just a tap can get more information, links to book tickets or send details to friends.
Tom’s a-peeling release
Pop folk experimentalist Tom Peel unveils his latest EP this month. TrippleClick It is his first official release on Speech Fewapy Records after joining the likes of The Traps and Greg Bird & Flamingo Flame on the Birmingham-based independent label’s roster. It was recorded on a variety of vintage, retro and modern equipment in his Witton bedroom and will be available to download from September 13. In true Tom Peel style, the EP will only be downloadable after fans connect pieces of Tom’s ‘vintage’ equipment online at the interactive TrippleClick It game at www.speechfewapy.com.
Jazz Café and Mean Fiddler present
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ZINE FEST DEBUTS THIS MONTH The full details for Birmingham’s first ever Zine Festival have been revealed, with events and exhibitions taking place across the city to celebrate DIY comics, books and magazines. September 2 sees two special exhibitions opening in honour of the festival, with the Zine Art Exhibition launching
at 5pm at Urban Outfitters in Corporation Street, ahead of the 7pm unveiling of the Postcard Mail Art Exhibition at Framers in the Custard Factory, Digbeth. Both will run throughout the month. The festival officially opens on September 10, with a short film night, followed by a day long Zine Fair at
The Victoria in John Bright Street on September 11 with the Atta Girl Zine Party at Island Bar, Suffolk Street, that night. A picnic in the park takes place at the Mac on September 12, Cannon Hill Park, for people to meet and share their zines. Details www.birminghamzinefestival. com.
cum clubbing at vivid
music on the buses
VIVID Gallery in Heath Mill Lane, Digbeth, hosts a ‘disco-as-art’ event on September 10, paying tribute to the infamous camp clubnight Cum Club, held at the Fantasy club in Birmingham in the 1980s. The retro disco night will feature DJ sets from Cum Club founder John Lupton (aka ‘Gay Jon’) and a host of other guests. Tickets £5, www.vivid.org.uk.
Oxjam will hijack the longest urban bus route in Europe next month, with a chance to get on board a musical extravaganza on the number 11. The charity campaign teams up with the Green Bus company on October 3, offering a full lap of the infamous Birmingham route complete with live music and food, starting and finishing at the Hare & Hounds.
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COMEDY FESTIVAL AND FREE BEER!
Birmingham Comedy Festival returns to the city next month, boasting more than 50 performances from some of the biggest names in comedy as well as a host of rising stars. The festival runs from October 1 to 10 at various venues, from intimate pub settings to glamorous arenas. Headliners this year include Armstrong & Miller and Ross Noble, with events running at host venues including Highlight, The Glee Club, Alexandra Theatre, the Electric Cinema, Mac, the Hare & Hounds, The Jekyll & Hyde, The Station in Sutton Coldfield, The Red Lion in Hockley and more. We’ve teamed up with festival supporters the Warwickshire-based Purity Brewing Co to offer three lucky winners a chance to taste the cream of comedy talent at one of the festival’s top venues, Highlight comedy club in Broad Street. On Friday, October 8, and Saturday, October 9, Bob Mills, 2009’s English Comedian of the Year Matthew Osborn and Steve Williams, as seen on Michael McIntyre’s Roadshow, will all be taking to the stage at the venue. Tickets are £14 and £17 (from 0121 632 4936 or www.thehighlight.co.uk) but we have three pairs of tickets to give away, along with your choice of a case of Purity favourites Mad Goose, UBU or Pure Gold, courtesy of the Warwickshire brewery. To be in with a chance of winning, simply tell us: What is the name of the Warwickshire farm where Purity Brewing Co is based? (hint – if you’re struggling, check out www.puritybrewing.com or search ‘UBU’ on Facebook) Send your answer with name, date of birth and a contact number and email address to email@example.com by September 30. All entrants must be aged 18 or over. Full terms and conditions apply and are available on request from firstname.lastname@example.org.
ONIC SUPERS stival e-day city fe 0 re h T : T A H W 01 ber 22-24, 2 WHEN: Octo around the Custard and WHERE: In igbeth Factory in D clectic line-up of S: E HIGHLIGHT , new talent and eers global pion wans, , including S playing after a day of local artists Godflesh, as well as th, electronica, psychedeNapalm Dea le and the addition al a lia and noise rather than re cakes and s’ events. onic for Kid al.com just a day of metal! That’s rs e p u ‘S w e of n nicfestiv something that is really ww.superso DETAILS: w
profile So, how long has Supersonic been running and how did it come about? Supersonic is now in its eighth year, it started as a one day event at the Custard Factory and is now a three day event of music, art, film, workshops, talks and cake. And who is behind it? Capsule are the brains, and hearts, behind the festival. It’s Capsule’s mission to bring the most exciting new music to Birmingham and also provide a platform for creative activity in the region. We’re often associated with the ‘darker’ side of music and art but we’re also partial to dogs in clothes, homemade cakes and booze with bubbles. What’s your main aim with the festival? Our aim is to join the invisible dots between music and art and invite people to engage with exciting new creative practice in a variety of ways, whether its going insane to a band or taking part in an instrument building workshop, we aim to be so much more than a straightforward music festival. Compared to mainstream festivals, there are a lot of ‘cult’ acts, and not so many household names. What would you say to someone who wasn’t familiar with much of the bill to convince them they should come to Supersonic? The bands on the fringe today often are recognized more widely in the future, for instance Supersonic put LCD Soundsystem on way back in 2003 and Battles when they were still relatively unknown. You don’t need to know something beforehand to enjoy it, I know people who have attended in the past have said that Supersonic provides a way for people to discover new artists they wouldn’t have found elsewhere. Which is nice! It’s a very eclectic line-up, what’s your process for choosing the acts? It’s a combination of trying to get the acts on our wishlist, with trying out things people approach us with. Once the headliners are confirmed we can use that as a starting point, so programming artists that reference them and thinking about the general feel of each stage each day to build a certain atmosphere. There’s quite a few ‘coups’ on the bill as well. What is it do you think that keeps acts coming back to play for you? I think Supersonic has managed to develop a reputation as a festival that’s unlike any other and bands like to play on a bill that’s diverse and unusual. So Godflesh will be
important to Supersonic, finding the connections between different styles of music that aren’t necessarily obvious. It makes the whole process a lot more exciting and interesting for both the audience and the performers.
You moved it to October to get away from ‘festival season.’ Do you think the festival circuit is becoming saturated these days? Festivals are tons of fun and it’s great to have a wealth of choice but unfortunately so many festivals around the country share such a similar bill, so much so that they begin to become fairly identikit. With Supersonic we’re trying to carve out something that’s quite unique and never really felt affiliated with other summer festivals. What is it that will make Supersonic stand out from the rest? Well, there aren’t many other events where you can listen to dubstep, doom, prog, folk, avant jazz and grindcore in one weekend. And who are you most looking forward to seeing yourself? The Swans (pictured) reunion is extremely exciting and it’ll be incredible to hear some of those early songs live, but it’s often the smaller stuff that excites me the most. The collaboration between Lash Frenzy and Japanese noise artist KK Null should be ear shattering, and if I wasn’t working I’d really want to take part in the God’s White Noise project, a seven hour continuous performance where trained and non trained musicians can contribute and move in and out of the action. Another exciting addition to the line up is the Hallogallo project which features krautrock legend Michael Rother and Steve Shelley of Sonic Youth performing the music of Neu! Who would be on your dream festival line-up? Mike Patton and Lionel Richie collaborating on ‘Easy’. Now, that would be a coup. Tickets for Supersonic are on sale now, starting at £20 for day tickets and £75 for weekend tickets. Visit www.supersonicfestival.com for full details and booking information.
COOL AS FUNK They were the epitome of cool when their Tarantino-endorsed blend of hip hop, funk, soul and rock emerged in the mid 90s, with classic hits such as Scooby Snacks to their name. Now, wise guy New Yorkers FUN LOVIN' CRIMINALS are back and they mean business. Frontman and professional charmer Huey Morgan talks laundry, legal wrangles and his love of music with Tom Pell. After he's stopped mixing him up with his wife that is. “Hellooo ‘dere!”, bellows a put-on, over the top,
wrangling and went back to their roots, leaving out
leprechaun-esque Irish accent. “Hello? Is that
any moany, bitter business. “We didn’t wanna make
Huey?”, we reply, eager to find out who has kidnapped
a record that would burden the listener, and we also
our interviewee, before a familiar New York drawl
didn’t wanna make a record that would remind us of
appears on the other end of the phone, “....oh, sorry
all the bullshit. So we did a '180' and decided to make
dude. I thought you were my wife. I’m always doing
a record that would be fun. Everybody’s got problems.
these silly accents. I’m just doin’ some laundry. How
I’ve got problems, you’ve got problems - we’ve got laundry to do, bro’. You don’t want me
you doin’?” You might be wondering where they’ve been, or, if you’re about 15, who they are – as FLC have been involved in a long running legal battle for the last five years when a manager they fired in 2003 tried to take them to the proverbial cleaners. But even after marriage, Huey insists the boys never considered walking away from music. “It wasn’t ever an option I don’t think. The one
“I’ve got problems, you’ve got problems — we’ve got laundry to do, bro”
thing we do that makes us feel good, and makes other people feel good, we can’t stop
to write a song reminding people how horrible laundry is to do, you want me to write a song about somethin’ else!” The sound of the new record is typified by listening to it, “....When you’re in your car, with your homeboys, and you’re driving to the beach or for a night out on the town”, which, realistically, doesn’t sound as glamorous when there’s five of you bunched up in a Renault Clio, lost on the Wolvo ring road on the way
to Blast Off, but you get the idea.
doing it just because some fucking prick manager wants to sue us, y’know?”
Huey balances his FLC work, They Huey Show which he fronts on BBC 6 Music, acting (keep an eye out in
With heads held high, they rose above the court
Plan B’s ‘Prayin’ video) and random bits of TV work.
metropolis music present
“Opportunities are great when they come up, and you try them out, especially at my age,” Huey continues, opportunities like presenting Never Mind The Buzzcocks. “Jupitus and Bailey are the two coolest guys. Mark Lamarr asked me to do it, and I said ‘I don’t know if I can really swing” and he said, '...you can swing. You’ve got Bailey, you’ve got Jupitus - they’ll carry you through it.' And they did, they’re such nice guys.” But he’s careful not to become, “... the
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musician slash Celebrity Big Brother guy” and insists, “I’ve turned down a lot of stuff; they wanted me to do wife swap. I was like, 'get the fuck outta here, I’ve got way more respect for my wife than that.'” So with his head screwed on, his appetite for music as strong as as ever - “I was talking
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to Mick Jagger, and he knew more about new music than I did. And that guy doesn’t have to – he’s Mick Jagger! Dudes like that give you inspiration; if Mick Jagger’s gonna listen to 10 new CDs a week, then I should do too” - Huey doesn’t seem to be slowing down anytime yet. “I look in the mirror when I wake up and I think hey, you’re not doin’ too bad, kid.”
Monday 22nd November
BIRMINGHAM HARE AND HOUNDS 24 Hour Ticket Hotline: 0844 811 0051 or book on-line: www.gigsandtours.com The Album ‘As Day Follows Night’ out now sarahblasko.com myspace.com/sarahblasko A Metropolis Music presentation by arrangement with Pitch & Smith
Nope, not too bad at all.
Fun Lovin' Criminals play the Wulfrun Hall, Wolverhampton, on September 18. Tickets are £22/£20 from www.wolvescivic.co.uk or 0870 3207000. Words: Tom Pell | Design: sleepy.me.uk
Monday 22 November
BIRMINGHAM O2 ACADEMY2 0844 477 2000 24 Hour Ticket Hotline: 0844 811 0051 or book on-line: www.gigsandtours.com A Metropolis Music presentation by arrangement with Primary Talent International F o r ex c l u s i ve l i ve a n n o u n c e m e n t s a n d p r i o r i t y b o o k i n g g o t o : w w w. g i g s a n d t o u r s . c o m
H T I W P U G N I P E E K
i s n ó J Icelandic epic wonders Sigur Rós may be taking a wellearned break while several members get settled into parenthood. But lead singer Jónsi Birgisson has been a busy man without his usual bandmates. Richard Moynihan finds out more, as the enigmatic singer prepares to bring his jaw-dropping live show to Birmingham. Since his band released their 2008 album, the impenetrably-titled Með suð í eyrum við spilum endalaust (“with a buzz in our ears we play endlessly” in English), Jónsi teamed up with the man behind much of Sigur Rós’s iconic artwork, boyfriend Alex Somers, to release their first album together. Riceboy Sleeps, an ambient and experimental offering, was released in 2009 alongside a series of the pair’s artworks, and in 2010, Birgisson put out his critically lauded solo effort Go. Since Jónsi’s reverb-steeped, falsetto vocals and soaring guitar drones are so integral to the Sigur Rós sound, Go is reassuringly sating for fans of the band, and probably as unappetising to those not so keen. Yet there’s a notable difference in sound between band and solo work. There are fewer dirgeful strings and more glitchy synthesisers while Jónsi sings mainly in English. With Sigur Rós, he sang the majority of the songs in Icelandic and Hopelandic, a made up language that lacks meaning and grammar, and focuses entirely on the sound of the indistinctive words. Frankly, he could have been singing his shopping lists for all that time and most listeners would have been none the wiser. With Go, listeners can pore over his lyrics for their first time; a daunting notion for the singer, surely? “It’s been good,” he explains. “Most definitely a challenge but a good learning experience. I’m asked about that a lot actually, about singing Icelandic and English. I guess because we have been singing in Icelandic for so long, with Sigur Rós, so I think people are curious to see why I am singing in English now. It’s kind of a good experiment; good to try it out and stuff.” Encouragingly, and perhaps surprisingly, Go’s songs don’t lose any of the mystique associated with Sigur Rós, despite being understandable without the help of an Icelandic dictionary. The much-mentioned ethereal spell created by the four piece isn’t broken by their lead singer going it alone; despite the difference in approach to song-writing. “When I do the Sigur Rós stuff, I do it with the other guys, basically, but when it’s a song that I am writing on my own, it’s just me on my acoustic guitar or a piano, or something,” Jónsi reveals.
From those initial solo sketches, it’s through collaborating with others that the album’s songs take on their unabashedly poppy, symphonic feel. Somers leant both production and playing duties, and Jónsi joined forces for the first time with composer Nico Muhly, who‘s previously worked on song arrangements for the likes of Antony and the Johnsons, and Grizzly Bear, and completely re-envisioned Birgisson’s early versions. “With Go, I think the best thing for me was to work with different musicians and artists,” he enthuses. “I’ve been working with Sigur Rós for 16 years now; quite a long time, so it’s kind of refreshing for me to work with different people, to expand a little bit and go out of my comfort zone and try something new.” Go expands on the thumping percussion of Sigur Rós’ last album and, though it’s crammed with a range of diverse instruments, the album’s notably vocal driven and high energy; a burst of cacophonous joy. The lyrics are largely positive, and urge listeners to “make your voice break, sing it out” and assure that “we should always know that we can do anything.” However, it does draw to a close with two songs ‘Grow Till Tall’ and ‘Hengliás’ that harp back to the sorrowful sound and crescendos that Sigur Rós are associated with. It’s the result of a diverse, creative process that Birgisson appears to have enjoyed. “Some Go songs are quite different and a lot of the songs sound like they have more percussion than Sigur Ros songs,” he acknowledges. “Maybe a little bit more colourful and playful, so it kind of lends itself a little bit to more like theatrics and having fun rather than work.” Those theatrics come through especially well in live performances. To tour the album, Jónsi’s worked with 59 Productions, who specialise in operas and ballets, to create a thrilling, hypnotic spectacle. Described as ‘epic’ and ‘innovative’ by reviewers, his concerts involve a headdress-adorned Jónsi going from intimate, pin-drop quiet whisperings to leaping around the stage in a primal dance, as coarsely sketched animals burst onto giant screens behind him; all very redolent of a Bat For Lashes gig (“I’ve heard the name but I’ve never heard them”). For the finale, high-def water visuals cascade around him to bring the show to a genuinely awe-inspiring close. It’s an astonishing feat from a man who has just the one album out so far. With no date confirmed for a future Sigur Rós album, who knows what he could achieve if he continues at this rate? Jónsi plays the O2 Academy, Birmingham on September 9.
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It's Playtime When it comes to putting on a unique live show, there aren’t many acts out there who can compete with MODIFIED TOY ORCHESTRA. Theirs is no ordinary electronic pop, the Birmingham six-piece, the brainchild of Brian Duffy, make their music by circuit bending toys rescued from car boot sales producing a fresh, melodic and visual experience like no other. Four years on from their debut album Toygopop, they are preparing to unleash their follow up record and an electrifying new live show entitled Plastic Planet, to be premiered in the UK with a celebratory homecoming performance at Birmingham’s Town Hall this month. Ross Cotton catches up with the conductors to delve deeper into the world of Modified Toy Orchestra. Where did you get your initial influence from to generally get more press and bigger audiences in mainland Europe, but Hong Kong was one of the explore music through the use of toys? highlights. We out-sold Kraftwerk by three times and The revealing of the hidden world beyond our senses there was a lot of interest in the ecological subtext of is a long-term subject for me. Exploring the hidden the show. latent potential of old toys was a very concrete way of working with this theme. When I first realised When will the new record be released in the UK? toys could produce a new landscape of unintended sounds I became obsessed with it and had no choice We are hoping it will be ready in time for the but to follow, I was trying to find a way of removing Birmingham show, official release shortly after that. the self referential/autobiographical tendency when Most of the tracks have had small changes made to composing music and the habits one eventually forms them. After performing the tracks live little changes occurred which we liked, so we reworked these back when playing more conventional instruments. in to the recordings. This album was made to be Are there any new toy instruments coming out to performed live and then has evolved as we have been performing tracks from it. play this time around? This album has a few new things. Vocals from a LeapPad talking book; a rocket that can count to 10 in eight different languages; two recording yellow plastic bear heads made by Lego; a blue guitar made by Boots. We’ve used some of these instruments live for the past two years as we refined different parts of the album. For the Town Hall show there may be a few new things that we are building at the moment, including a completely unpredictable journey into the random mind of the Casio SA mini keyboard range. After performances around the world, including unveiling Plastic Planet in Hong Kong last year, do you find that other countries hold a larger fan base for your music?
How would you describe Plastic Planet to a potential audience? Ten tracks of avant pop performed on modified children’s toys, devoid of autobiography and personal narrative, while at the same time being emotive, dark yet fun. Sometimes joyous, sometimes sombre but always life affirming.
Modified Toy Orchestra perform the UK premiere of Plastic Planet on Sept 8 at Town Hall, Birmingham, with support from Micronormous, the latest project from Matt Eaton of Pram. Tickets are £12. Visit www. thsh.co.uk or call 0121 780 3333. Plastic Planet will be released on Warm Circuit Records.
Well we have been fortunate to have performed in a many countries in some amazing venues, and we Words: Ross Cotton | Design: sleepy.me.uk
Pop punk three piece CALORIES caused quite a stir across the indie spectrum with their boisterous 2009 debut Adventuring, the perfect showcase to their blend of melodic mastery, hardcore roots and lo-fi gang ethic. With a fanbase stretching far beyond the borders of their home city of Birmingham, the trio of John Biggs, Pete Dixon and Tom Whitfield, survivors of former noise-pop anti-heroes Distophia, are back on the trail with new album Basic Nature out this month on Tough Love Records, a monochrome journey to the end of youth which sees the band plotting new territory through the distorted independence of home-recording. It’s a step back to take a huge leap forward, as Adam Smith finds out. “Apparently the album is more mature,” insists drummer Tom, mulling over the end product of their new album, Basic Nature. Far from second album syndrome which sees many bands going all out for over-zealous production values, their approach to the new record has seen them strip things right back to their roots. “Rather than simply follow on from Adventuring we wanted to do something different,” Tom continues. “When we first went into the studio we wanted to make a Hot Snakes album, that’s what a lot of the demos were, just a real fast punk record, but it was too one dimensional so we went back and put all the demos in.”
While last year’s debut album Adventuring was recorded entirely in the studio Basic Nature is, as bassist and vocalist Pete explains, “...70 per cent studio and about 30 per cent home recording, things like Dictaphone and reel-to-reel.” The band champion the lo-fi aesthetic, with Pete claiming that they “wanted to go backwards.” “When you’re home recording things because its a bit trashier you can get away with writing something really poppy and it will never feel over produced,” explains Tom. Some of Basic Nature’s strongest moments came out of this inverted process, songs such as forthcoming single FFWD were churned up as part of this return to the drawing board. One of Calories most infectious songs to date, the track was originally named Fast Forward to the Rape Scene, (a reference to controversial film Irreversible, as Tom explains), a title the band were forced to change because of it being touted for possible daytime radio airplay. Indeed with Basic Nature, Calories look set to capitalise on the grass roots popularity that built up around Adventuring. Not bad for a band who seem to have a conscious indifference to success . “It’s not about being on the cutting edge of music,” insists Pete. “We’ve always done our own thing. We’re not a cool band, we just did Adventuring and it was cool at the time.”
Thus its fallen to the band’s record label Tough Love to inject some much needed hip-appeal. “With Tough Love, Steve (Pietrzykowski) is a bit more clued up on promotion, packaging and blogs,” explains frontman and guitarist John. “He’s trying to make us cool, people think we may be cool, they’re Googling it and they’re like ‘oh! calories are cool!’”, adds Tom. Calories decision to follow an independent route, embracing home recording and releasing on small labels seems in part to have been informed by their experience in former band Distophia. Despite the hype at the time, much of Distophia’s music never actually saw the light of day due to record label politics. The band though seem far happier with the current situation. “Before, when we made a living out of it we didn’t release any records, so whats the point? If someone came to us and said we’ll give you a record deal and you can do this, this and this but we want to release the album in a years time we’d say no,” explains Pete. “As you get a bit older you understand how it works a bit more.” This is the hard fought wisdom which comes with the years, it would seem. And coming of age seems to be the great adventure which drives right from the heart of Calories music, “the songs are about growing up,” admits Pete.
Singer John concedes they may have once been “young and experimental,” but now they have slightly different ambitions about their music. “Now we’re old and we wanna do songwriter albums,” he adds. It just so happens that in doing this they’re making their most exhilarating music to date. They may claim in FFWD that “the old days were better” but with Calories you can’t help but feel as though the best is yet to come. Words by Adam Smith. Photos by Gobinder Jhitta. Basic Nature, the second album from Calories is released on September 13 on Tough Love Records, as a combined vinyl and CD release and on digital download. Visit www.toughloverecords.com to order. New single FFWD is out now and available for download, accompanied by a video by acclaimed director Ollie Evans (Foals, Klaxons). The Basic Nature album launch party, hosted by Chicks Dig Jerks, takes place at The Rainbow, Digbeth, on September 11, with live performances from Calories and support from Echo Lake plus DJ sets from Chicks Dig Jerks and This is Tomorrow.
TURN OVER FOR CALORIES GUIDE TO THEIR FAVOURITE HAUNTS IN BIRMINGHAM.
(Well, a four mile stretch of it at least...) While they may insist they are “not a cool band”, we reckon Calories are pretty good judges of a cool place to go in Birmingham. And with thousands upon thousands of wet-behind-the-ears students descending on the city this month, desperately seeking a comforting arm around the shoulder and words of wisdom from someone older and cooler to tell them where to go and spend their loan money, we thought we’d let John, Pete and Tom share their favourite haunts. You see, life in the Second City is not all about Broad Street and the Bullring, so if you want to shop, eat or drink in places with their own distinct charm and style then you can’t go far wrong then following these handy hints. Just tell em Calories sent ya. (Now don’t go thinking Calories are a lazy band just because they’ve picked three places within spitting distance of each other and two more a couple of miles down the road. It just means that they reckon Kings Heath, Moseley and Digbeth are clearly the coolest parts of town. And who are we to argue?)
TOP BANANA POLAR BEAR RECORDS York Road, Kings Heath “This is pretty much the only good record shop left in Birmingham now,” says John. “They have a mix of used and new records from labels as diverse as Incus, Domino, Drag City, Rune Grammofon, ReR, Caldo Verde etc. Steve and Nathan are the proprietors and they sometimes make tea for hard up students as long as they spend over £300 in one transaction. Also, Editors shop there so make sure you bring your autograph books along with you.”
York Road, Kings Heath “DJ and promoter extraordinaire Maz of Chicks Dig Jerks fame is the manager of this little vintage shop on the same street as Polar Bear. A great selection of second hand dresses, jeans, leggings and sunglasses. If you want to look cool in Birmingham this is the only place to shop. You could leave looking like Michael Jackson, Pee Wee Herman or 30 Seconds To Mars if you bring some pals with you. Maz will also make you some tea (a bit weaker as she reuses the tea bags) - again though you have to spend £300 of your student loan in one transaction. Also Editors shop there as well so you could follow them out of Polar Bear and get another autograph.
Photos by Gobinder Jhitta (www.gobinderjhitta.co.uk).
To win a set of limited edition prints from our exclusive Calories photo shoot, along with a copy of their debut album and a meal for two at the Hare & Hounds, courtesy of Soul Food Project, simply tell us the name of Calories first album. For more inside tips on the best that Birmingham has to offer for newcomers to the city, keep your eyes peeled for the Brum Notes Student Guide to Birmingham, out later this month.
THE RAINBOW^ High Street, Digbeth
“This is where we’re doing our album launch on Saturday, September 11. It’s a good place to come and make friends with people. If you’re from out of town you might be feeling a little bit vexed so come to our album launch for a few hours then get a taxi or bus back to the halls of residence or the union bar for a night cap.”
SOUL FOOD PROJECT AT THE HARE & HOUNDS^ High Street, Kings Heath
“Matt Beck is the CEO of the Soul Food Project. We tried to make him wear a cat suit for the photos but he said: ‘no, you’re alright’. Soul Food make lovely little dinners that are inspired by the ‘diverse food landscape of America’. What he made for us was delicious and we left the kitchen satisfied, walking around licking our lips. The Hare & Hounds is a great pub with a good choice of beers and hard crisps. Not good for people with thin teeth.”
THE FIGHTING COCKS^ St Mary’s Row, Moseley
“A great place to visit if you want a fresh drink. All the beers are good and the ales are looked after by Ben. Ask for him if you want to buy some ale. He will advise you on the top brands. The outside area is where we sometimes go. It’s nice out there under the heaters.”
THE LINES GUIDE TO WOLVERHAMPTON They’re the best thing to come out of Wolverhampton since the tram back to Birmingham, so who better to show you around the beating heart of the Black Country than local heroes THE LINES? Their much-maligned and oft-misunderstood home city may not have won many fans in a certain national tourist guide book, but that doesn’t mean Wolvo is without its own little gems. It already boasts one of the finest venues in the country in the shape of the Civic Hall, as well as its smaller but perfectly formed siblings the Wulfrun Hall and the recently launched Slade Rooms. But they are not the only places worth turning visiting to sup on a pint of Banks’s. So whether you’re a fresh faced student new to the Millennium City, an outsider turning up for a gig, or you just simply fancy a day trip out of Bilston, you can do worse than follow this route as Danny, Dean, Alex and Paddy from The Lines take Tom Pell on a tour around the sexy hotspots of Wolverhampton. And The Pork Joint.
ALCHEMY North Street One of the many fine places in Wolverhampton to pick up this here magazine! If you’ve just picked it up in Alchemy and you’re reading this right now.....we’re watching you. We’re not, we’re joking. Quiet during the day and buzzing at night, Alchemy boasts the best smoking area in Wolverhampton. It’s a beach, sand and all. And as Alex points out, it was a good starting point for The Lines playing open mic nights.
THE SLADE ROOMS Broad Street
THE POSADA Lichfield Street A selection of real ales, alcoves, newspapers left on tables and a copious amount of tiling sets a scene that wouldn’t be out of place in Heartbeat. Described by Paddy as “an old man pub”, The Posada does a Ronseal on you. Located on Lichfield Street, it’s a must hit for a cheeky one on your way into town, ‘one’ being an ale, and a bag of scratchings. Best mates, them two. “It’s just a proper old mans pub,” elaborates Paddy, “there’s actually old men in there and everything.”
Formerly The Little Civic in nearby North Street, the charismatic little venue had to close and relocate due to safety fears, presumably caused by the fact that the walls were made from 85 per cent posters. It has now been moved, tarted up and renamed. After, you know, Slade. Formally the Little Civic, before it was closed incase someone died and got trapped inside the impending wreckage that was the result of the shaky old foundations collapsing and the fact the walls were made from 85% posters, the venue has now been moved, tarted up, and renamed. “The Little Civic was great but it needed a change,” says Dean. “The Slade Rooms are smart too, and right near the cinema.” Cinema and a gig in one night? That’s stamina.
THE CIVIC HALL North Street “It’s one of my favourite venues, and it’s just had some amazing bands,” states Alex. “Radiohead have played there. I really do think it’s one of the best venues in England.” Add to that An Evening with Ricky Hatton, KoRn, and Pixie Lott in the coming months and you can start to understand the kind of things that go on at the Civic. Blast Off is also a must, Wolverhampton’s premier indie and alternative night every Saturday.
See next month’s issue for a full interview with the band.
THE GIFFORD ARMS
THE PORK JOINT Princes Square Ahh, The Pork Joint. Proud owner of the best, and simplest menu in the world: “Pork Bap, Turkey Bap, Mixed Bap.” That’s literally it. Want something else? Tough. Forget the Civic Hall, forget The Posada, this is where The Lines couldn’t wait to take us.
Words by Tom Pell. Photos by Gobinder Jhitta.
LOOK. AT. THAT. CHAIR. Just down the road from Beatties, The Gifford Arms is, as they say, an experience. Fancy sitting inside a replica of The Hog’s Head from Harry Potter, sitting on red leather furniture whilst listening to heavy metal at full blast? At three o’clock in the afternoon? Good There’s also a condom-esque machine in the toilets that bizarrely sells aftershave. As Alex rightly emphasises: “The Gifford Arms is an experience.”
The Lines headline The Wulfrun Hall, Wolverhampton, on October 8 ahead of the release of their debut album on October 11.
live GOODNIGHT LENIN (single launch party) Hare & Hounds, Kings Heath August 6 In a little under 12 months Goodnight Lenin have moved on from playing kitchens (mental note to self - avoid any jokes about ‘tapping’ in to an audience or becoming the ‘toaster’ the town) to selling out the Hare & Hounds. With people being turned away and copies of their limited edition single flying off the merch table (this season’s must have, the Goodnight Lenin tote bag, actually sold out), this was their biggest triumph to date. The by now traditional crowd pleasers were all in evidence, Ragged Schools, Wenceslas Square and, of course, the new single itself Crook in the Creek, which tonight enjoyed a particularly spirited rendition and
received an equally ecstatic reception. Their newer songs have started to sound stronger too though with Mannequins, the distinctly Dylan-esque After All and Old Cold Hands all sounding noticeably more polished than before. There was a little less banter than in previous gigs and you get the sense that the Lenin have their eyes firmly on ‘the next level’. With prestigious slots lined up for this year’s Bestival and Moseley Folk Festival what came across tonight though, as the sweat dripped from the walls, is that this band’s on fire right now. Once again Goodnight Lenin score top Marx. Words by Daron Billings
THE PHENOMENAL HANDCLAP BAND Hare & Hounds, Kings Heath August 4 If you’re going to form a band and call yourself something as ambitious as The Phenomenal Handclap Band, you’ve really got to live up to your name. Take Average White Band for instance, they set the public’s expectations pretty modestly and probably didn’t disappoint too many when they turned out to be slightly better than average. So, 10 minutes into tonight’s set and we’re not exactly on the phone to Trading Standards, but neither are we in the grip of a religious, funk fervour. There’s nothing wrong with them in fairness, it’s just that the atmosphere is a little cold in the room with the band not connecting completely with the entire crowd. Still, they look as though they’re having an awesome time and some funky dancing is really going on down the front. The sultry ‘15 to 20’ has a particular pelvic pumping effect on the those engaged. Perhaps less phenomenal than expected, certainly with less handclaps than suggested, but not bad for an average band. Words by Andy Roberts
Pictures this page: top by Ian Dunn, middle by Ian Dunn, left by Drw-images.
THE ADAM & EVE
TUNNG MAC, Birmingham Aug 13 With an unfortunate downpour, the Mac’s cleansed outside arena was forced to be abandoned for the inner theatre, leaving fans slightly dis-entranced for the enticing performance ahead, initially set in the heat of a beautiful summer’s day. But the gloomy, grey-skied exterior was about to be contrasted with a spectacle of glee, scooped up into an energetic interior. Quirky six piece Tunng came kitted with a washing line full of bells, shells and trinkets, hanging down and ready to act as organic percussion, background to angelic vocals. “It’s getting so, so cold, what are you going to do, you should stop
worrying” sings Becky, uplifting the Mac from the dampness and bringing out the sunshine. Poncho-wearing Mike’s raw acoustic guitar beauty and vocals entwined a tremor of joy, conflicting the late Elliott Smith’s sorrowful acoustic folk music with graceful views. The bohemian sound grew deeper into a completely rustic experience, turning off all amplifiers and microphones to perform a stunning and robust piece, before brightening up the stage with ‘Bullets’, a magnetic sing-along that caught the hearts of the crowd with rhythm. The dark clouds were well and truly destroyed by now. Words by Ross Cotton
YEASAYER The Slade Rooms, Wolverhampton Aug 25 They might draw on Depeche Mode’s vocal style and borrow percussive ambition from fellow New York hipsters LCD Soundsystem on record, but live, Brooklyn’s Yeasayer deliver an exceptionally unique sound. Playing an intimate show at a hot and packed out Slade Rooms before weekend appearances at the Reading and Leeds festivals, achingly cool and original band members Chris Keating, Ira Wolf Tuton and Anand Wilder - with Jason Trammell and Ahmed Gallab in support - opened with the raga-like Wait For The Summer, before increasing tempo and temperature with a string of tracks from their debut album All Hour Cymbals. At times feeling both like a jamming session in someone’s front
room and an express lesson in how to translate a near perfect recording into to a blinding and experimental musical experience on stage, the Secretly Canadian and Mute backed five piece dropped a devastating mix of cow bells, wood blocks, distorted samples, pitch perfect vocals and harmonies into driving rhythms and basslines so tight and funky James Brown could have used them for a doorbell. Pop friendly tracks from the band’s second and most recent album Odd Blood, including ONE, Mondegreen and set closer Ambling Alps drew the biggest cheers of the night - turning an already memorable performance into one of the must-see live shows of 2010. Words by Lyle Bignon
Bradford St, Digbeth, Birmingham B12 0JD SEPTEMBER LISTINGS: Every Monday: ‘Broken Amp’ - weekly acoustic evening hosted every Monday by the “inestimably lovely” Richie Chappell.
CHECK OUT OUR STUDENT NIGHT DRINK DEALS. Carlsberg, VS and Glass of wine all £1.50. Apple Sourz £1. Live Music, DJs till late and cheap drinks too! BRUM PUNX PICNIC 2010 SEPT 3RD, 4TH & 5TH LINE UP ANNOUNCED, INSIDE AND OUTSIDE STAGES! Friday 3rd: The Nerks: straight up punk from Brum/ Comply or Die: Balls punk from York/ Seven Crowns: Hardcore BATHstards/ Contempt: West Midlands anarchy punk/ Middle Finger Salute: So-cal punk from the North West/ Hammerlock: Dirty Rock ‘n’ Roll from the USA Saturday 4th: Mangled: Mangled by name, Mangled by nature/ Falling Down : Female fronted hardcore punk via London/ The Pikes: German mod punk ft. Ex Tower Blocks/ Running Riot: Drunk Irish street punk/ Criminal X: 77’ style punk from Chesterfield/ Septic Psychos: UK E2 in 2010/ The Dead Class: Dead Classy Punk from Ireland/Liverpool/ GBH : Whoy! Outside acoustic sets from: The Banditos: Very drunk Northern people/ 5 Shitty fingers: Morris dancing f*ckfest ft. Dunc Snuff Sunday 5th: Primeval Soup: Anarchy Ska from sunny Brighton/ Grind the Enemy: stenchcore from London/ Scarred Society: Brummie Ardcore/ Black Marias: Peterborough streetpunk/ Sister Automatic: Garage punk from Birmingham/ Global Parasite: Welsh anarchy Punk/ Punk Wreck: Yam-Yam flavoured punk/ Cracked Actors: Brummie Ska Outside acoustic stage: Cracked Johnny : a little bit like the Cracked Actors!/ Balsall Heathens : Folk Punk wi d fiddle! Thursday 9th: Loop Promotions presents: The Celturian + guests + Far Future + Agents of the future. Drinks promos: Carlsberg,VS, glass wine £1.50, Apple Sourz £1. Friday 10th: tbc Saturday 11th: tbc Sunday 12th: Birmingham vs. Liverpool 4pm shown live here. Free half time food. Thursday 16th: Silent Filter promotions presents The Monicas. Drinks promo’s: Carlsberg,VS, glass wine £1.50, Apple Sourz £1. Friday 17th: Silent Filter presents.... Saturday 18th: Birmingham vs. West Brom, 3pm shown live here. Free half time food, ring for further details. 360 ! An 8 piece ska outfit fresh from Glastonbury festival. A unique collective who always get the party started . Highly recommend this gig and best of all its all FREE ! Sunday 19th: Punky beats presents The New Town Kings & The Sub-divisions. Drinks promos: Carlsberg,VS, glass wine £1.50, Apple Sourz £1. Wednesday 22nd: The Void presents... 3 live bands and DJs. £3 entry with a free shot ! Thursday 23rd: Fingers Crossed Cabaret ! A night of comedy , magic and music. A monthly affair, free entry. Featuring Harriet Dwyer, Crumbs’ magic show and much more. Friday 24th: Mod favourites The Coopers ! All the classic Mod and Soul tunes, FREE ENTRY ! Saturday 25th: Old Skool revival - house breaks, dirty jams and a splash of techno. Sunday 26th: Punky beats presents live Ska/Punk. Drinks promos.
D REF BR EQ U AN UI RB D PM IS NE EN HM W T U EN PG T RA DE
In your room you will find at least the following equipment: 1 x Tama Superstar EFX 5 piece Shell Kit (Vintage Nickel Sparkle) 2 x Roadpro cymbal stands 1 x Ashdown ABM C210-500 Combo and ABM 1x15 Cab 1 x Marshall AVT 150H Stack 1 x Marshall MA50C (50Watt all valve twin channel combo) 1 x Peavey Bandit 1 x Peavey XR8300 PA and 2 x Peavey UL-15 PA Speakers
STUDIOS AVAILABLE FOR AS LITTLE AS ÂŁ8 PER HOUR FREE CYMBAL HIRE, EAR PLUGS AND TEA/COFFEE
Boxes will contain the following: 2 x Shure SM58 2 x Neutrik XLR Leads 2 x Wing nuts 4 x Cymbal Felts 1 x Hi-Hat clutch
WALSALL TOWN CENTRE
B4151 From Sutton Coldfield
OA DW AY N
HAL L ST
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AD L RO GHIL SPRIN
WE ARE HERE
REET BATH ST
Tel: 01922 629700
20 Pool Street, Walsall WS1 2EN
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A4031 From West Bromwich
BRAND NEW IN-HOUSE PRO-TOOLS RECORDING STUDIO
JJM Studios is a purpose built complex of six luxury, sound proofed rehearsal studios, professional recording studio and tuition services located in Walsall, West Midlands. At JJM Studios we always make sure you have the best possible rehearsal experience.
For FREE membership and further details visit A34 From Birmingham and M6 Junction 7
food & drink
food & drink the soul food column:
Soul Food Project is a concept kitchen based in Kings Heath’s Hare and Hounds – the menu is inspired by Soul Food and diner food from America’s Deep South. For more information visit www.hareandhoundskingsheath.co.uk or search ‘Soul Food Project’ on Facebook / Twitter.
September sees a plethora of activity in the Soul Food camp...
recipe of the month
First up.... September 18 Soul Food Project hosts the second instalment of our free live music events. Here’s the lineup: JON PRESLEY/ SWAMPMEAT/ LIAM CONWAY (GOODNIGHT LENIN)/ JAMES SUMMERFIELD/ TOM PEEL/ RICHARD BURKE/ TOOTE TOOTE, as well as DJ sets from the likes of Leftfoot, Freestyle, Funkbox, Sugarfoot Stomp, Speech Fewapy and of course the Soul Food DJs. The event is sponsored by Purity Brewing Co who are not only local, but also make some incredibly good beers (www.puritybrewing.com).
DEEP FRIED OKRA
Then from September 21 our Autumn / Winter menu will be live! This includes our sharing platters, Jambalaya Tuesdays (buy one get one free all day / night), waffle Wednesdays and our po’boy lunch menu. Finally on September 26 we launch Soul Food Sundays. Sundays are precious food days and as such we take our Sunday roasts very, very seriously so to say we’re exited about the official launch of our Soul Food Sundays is an understatement. Our roasts, featuring the likes of honey roasted ham, Cajun beef, beer glazed turkey and much more, will be served from 1pm through till 5pm and we’ll be welcoming jazz cat Andrew Dubber to curate the sound system in the soon to be refurbished back room of the Hare. To reserve a table and receive a weekend paper of your choice on the house email us at email@example.com.
by Soul Food head chef Carl Finn
Also known as ladyfingers, these elongated pentagon green seed pods originate form Africa and have a wonderful crunch and unusual sweet taste. Ingredients Handful of okra 1 pint cooking oil 180g plain flour 200ml sparkling water 1 egg 1 tsp paprika, cayenne pepper, thyme 1 pinch salt, pepper Method Wash the okra and dry well then heat the oil in a pan up to 178C. In a bowl put half the flour with the salt and pepper and make a well in the centre, adding the water and egg. In a separate bowl put the remaining flour with the paprika, cayenne pepper and thyme. Add the okra before dipping it in the batter mix and placing carefully into the oil. Fry until golden brown, serve with a pinch of rock salt, a sweet chilli dip or a rich cheese sauce and an episode of True Blood.
this month we shall be...
Finally dining at Lasan, Birmingham’s premier, Gordon Ramsay-endorsed Indian restaurant - report to follow next month • Making our weekly visit to Maison Mayci, whose establishments in Kings Heath and Moseley are, in our opinion, the finest patisseries in Birmingham • Drinking copious amounts of Sierra Nevada Pale Ale, which is available by the bottle at Island Bar or on tap at The Fighting Cocks in Moseley. It’s a full bodied ale with an incredible nose reminiscent of orange blossom and coriander and is a great partner to spicy food • Looking forward to the opening of Jamie Oliver’s first Birmingham venture Jamie’s Italian in October, on the site of the old Borders book shop in the Bullring. The emphasis is on ‘affordable, rustic Italian food with a neighbourhood feel’ (www.jamieoliver.com/italian).
food & drink
drink of the month: rum By far the most popular cocktail in Birmingham at the moment is the Mojito,” says Matt Marriott, manager of Birmingham’s premier rock n roll cocktail bar, Island. “It is a classic Cuban cocktail of fresh mint, lime sugar and most importantly rum. Rum is a personal passion of mine, at Island we currently stock 53 different varieties – eat your heart out Mr Heinz.”
The classic Cuban cocktail and by far the most popular cocktail in Birmingham at the moment. Ingredients 8 mint leaves 4 lime wedges 12.5ml sugar syrup (adjust to taste) 50ml light rum Method Press the lime and mint in the bottom of a tall glass using a rolling pin. Add the sugar syrup then fill the glass with crushed ice. Add the rum and stir vigorously with a long handled spoon. Top up with crushed ice and top with a dash of soda water. Garnish with a nice mint sprig.
Most of the rum we see in the UK is from the Caribbean, where a rum punch is a traditional favourite. These are easy to make, you just need to follow a simple rule of thumb: 1 part sweet, 2 parts sour, 3 parts strong, 4 parts weak. Ingredients 12.5ml sugar syrup 25ml freshly squeezed lemon juice 37.5ml dark rum 50ml pineapple juice Method Shake and strain over fresh ice in a tall Collins glass.
One of the all time classic rum cocktails which particularly suits Bacardi Superior, the world’s biggest selling rum. Ingredients 50ml light rum 25ml freshly squeezed lime juice 12.5ml sugar syrup (adjust to taste) Method Shake with ice and strain into a chilled Martini glass. The sugar syrup is made by combining equal volumes of white sugar and boiling water and leaving to cool. Island Bar, 14-16 Suffolk Street, Birmingham, hosts 5pm-8.30pm and all day Monday socials, when all cocktails are £3.50.
Going to a gig at the O2 Academy Birmingham? Then take advantage of our exclusive voucher, giving you the chance to enjoy 2-for-1 cocktails at Island Bar’s sister pub, The Victoria in nearby John Bright Street, just two minutes walk from the O2 Academy. The offer applies both before and after the show on production of your ticket. Enjoy!
ALL EVENTS FREE ENTRY, UNLESS OTHERWISE STATED
ENTERTAINMENT EVERY WEEK DOWNSTAIRS:
FRI SAT SUN MON TUE WED THU
HOWL - MIXING UP A STORM OF FUNK, SOUL, ALTERNATIVE & ROCK N’ ROLL VERTIGO - TIP-TOP DJ’S CREATING GENRE-HOPPING DANCEFLOOR MAYHEM SUNDAY LUNCH - SERVED 1-8PM + BLOODY MARYS + 2 FOR 1 COCKTAILS ALL DAY HAPPY MONDAYS - ALL WINE AT HOUSE PRICES (EXCLUDING FIZZ) + PIE & A PINT £9 SOUND AND VISION QUIZ NIGHT - £1 ENTRY AND THE WINNER TAKES IT ALL! POKER @ THE VICTORIA - £5 GETS YOU INTO THE GAME 7:30PM REGISTRATION NEW YORK TUNES - LAID BACK THURSDAYS NYC STYLE - LAUNCHING 24th SEPT
SCARLOT HARLOTS AND BACK TO PAPER PRESENTS - MOSCHINO HOES AND VERSACE HOTTIES Taking over The Vic! 1990’s RnB and Hip Hop and beyond - 8pm, £2
SILENT FILTER PRESENTS - Cancer Research Charity Gig - KARMA SUITE + WE WRITERS + JACKPIKE + 4 QUESTIONS ABOUT WHAT? + CARRIE-ANNE McNALLY - 8pm, £5
HASSELBAINK SAYS RELAX - Hasselbaink DJs and friends present an I ♥ 80s special 9pm, FREE
EAT A BOOK PRESENTS - A Matinee from URBAN BLIGHT + THE SCEPTRES + THE LOVE TRIANGLE 12:30pm-5:30pm, £5
SICKNOTE vs BUNKA - Birmingham’s finest techno showcase - 9pm, FREE before 11pm, £3
M4TP - Music For The People - A night that YOU control, party to the people’s choice 8pm, FREE
BIRMINGHAM ZINE FESTIVAL! - Zine fair - Workshops, animations, zines and live music from BOM & HIS MAGIC DRUMSTICK + WINSTON ECHO + SIMON FOX - 12-6pm, FREE
CHAOS ACOUSTIC CLUB - Live acoustic music every month downstairs - 8.30pm, FREE
SWEAT - The finest cuts of Soul, Funk, Disco, Northern Soul, Motown AND Hip-Hop - 9pm, £5
THATCHED - Dance, Pop and Soul club classics from under Thatcher’s reign! 1979 -1990 - 9pm, FREE
JOCKO HOMO - Disco, re-edited party classics, deep, proto and house music! - 9pm, FREE
ENTERTAINMENT EVERY WEEK DOWNSTAIRS:
WED THUR FRI
CARNT SLEEP - Funk, Soul, Indie, Disco - Launch Night! - 8:30pm, FREE ENTRY
ATTA GIRL - Official BIRMINGHAM ZINE FESTIVAL AFTER PARTY! Birmingham’s female vocalist clubnight. Indiepop, post-punk, pop riot grrrl and all things female vocalist!- 8.30pm, £1
SILENT FILTER PRESENTS - KARMA SUITE + NAKED REMEDY + PAN & THE POETS + CHARLIE CAN’T SURF + THE DIRTY KNECKS + CIRCUS TOWN - 8pm, FREE
AFTER WORK SOCIAL ALL DAY MONDAY & 5-8PM TUES-SAT ALL COCKTAILS £3.50
CLUB BOMB - FORTNIGHTLY LIVE MUSIC UPSTAIRS, £4/£3 OPEN MIC – ACOUSTIC LOUNGE WITH JASON PEGG OUR ALTERNATE WEEKLY RESIDENTS ‘THIS IS NORMAL’ & ‘THE BEAT ROOM’ CURATE AN ALTERNATIVE SOUNDSYSTEM SPANNING INDIE, ALTERNATIVE, DISCO, PUNK, ELECTRO, FUNK ... ON THE ROCKS – DJs SPINNING GUITAR CLASSICS FROM ACROSS THE DECADES FOR AN ALTERNATIVE GENERATION
ISLAND BAR, 14-16 SUFFOLK STREET QUEENSWAY, B1 1LT
WWW.BAR-ISLAND.CO.UK TWITTER: @IslandBar TEL: 0121 632 5296
THE VICTORIA, 48 JOHN BRIGHT STREET, B1 1BN
WWW.THEVICTORIABIRMINGHAM.CO.UK TWITTER: @TheVictoria TEL: 0121 633 9439
gig guide THE REGION’S MOST COMPREHENSIVE MONTHLY GUIDE TO GIGS OF ALL SIZES
PICK OF THE MONTH:
Want your gig or club night listed in our monthly guide? Send details to: firstname.lastname@example.org All details correct at time of going to press. Check with venues before setting out. For latest information and ticket details visit: www.brumnotes.com. While every effort will be made to ensure the accuracy of listings, Brum Notes Magazine will not be held liable for any errors or losses incurred from errors which may materialise. Be good kids.
GIGS 1. MODIFIED TOY ORCHESTRA, Sep 8, Town Hall, Birmingham Joyous electronic pop from internationally acclaimed Midlands pioneers, using only modified toys. Tickets £12, www.thsh.co.uk. 2. Jónsi, Sep 9, 02 Academy, Birmingham The Sigur Rós frontman goes it alone with stunning effect, with a mesmerising audio and visual show. Tickets £18.50 adv, www.ticketweb.co.uk. 3. CALORIES, Sep 11, The Rainbow, Digbeth Local boys celebrate the launch of second album Basic Nature with a live show, hosted by Chicks Dig Jerks. Tickets £6adv, www.theticketsellers.co.uk. 4. FUN LOVIN’ CRIMINALS, Sep 18, The Wulfrun Hall, Wolverhampton The hip hop-funk-rock fusion stalwarts make a welcome return to bring their New York swagger to Wolverhampton. Tickets £22/20, www.wolvescivic.co.uk. 5. NED’S ATOMIC DUSTBIN, Sep 25, HMV Institute, Digbeth The Stourbridge indie-rock legends perform their seminal 1991 album God Fodder in its entirety. Tickets £17 adv, www.ticketweb.co.uk. CLUB NIGHTS 1. BELOW MEETS FACE September 4, The Rainbow Uplifting house and a mix across the rooms as two of Brum’s best brands combine. £7adv.
2. LAUNCH PARTY September 18, HMV Institute PANIC IS BACK! Legendary indie rave returns to help open new venue in style. £various.
3. THATCHED September 24, The Victoria Dance, pop and soul club classics from the Thatcher years 19791990. £free entry.
BIRMINGHAM: O2 Academy, Horsefair, Bristol St B1, 0844 4772000; 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; Sound Bar, Corporation St B4, 0121 2362220; 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; Bulls Head, St Marys Row, Moseley B13, 0121 2567777; Island Bar, Suffolk St B1, 0121 6325296; The Jam House, St Pauls Sq B3, 0121 2003030; The Asylum, Hampton St, Hockley B19, 0121 2331109; The Rainbow, High St, Digbeth B12, 0121 7728174; Adam & Eve, Bradford St, Digbeth B12, 0121 6931500; Poppyred, The Arcadian, Hurst St B5, 0121 6871200; The Yardbird, Paradise Place B3, 0121 2122524; The Glee Club, The Arcadian, Hurst St B5, 0871 4720400; MAC, Cannon Hill Park B12, 0121 4463232; WOLVERHAMPTON: Civic Hall/Wulfrun Hall, North St WV1, 01902 552122; ; The Slade Rooms, Broad St WV1, 01902 552122; Alchemy Bar, North St WV1, 01902 711998; Robin 2, Mount Pleasant, Bilston WV14, 01902 401211; WEST BROMWICH: The Public, New St B70, 0121 5337161; COVENTRY: Kasbah, Primrose Hill St, CV1, 024 76554473; Warwick Arts Centre, University of Warwick, CV4, 024 76524524.
SUPERSONIC FESTIVAL Oct 22-24, Custard Factory £20-£75, www.seetickets.com
KRS-ONE Oct 23, HMV Institute
CARL BARAT Oct 25, The Slade Rooms
FAITHLESS Dec 10, The NIA
Wednesday, Sep 1 FRANK FAIRFIELD Kitchen Garden Cafe Kings Heath, Birmingham THE DEPRECIATION GUILD Hare & Hounds Kings Heath, Birmingham CW STONEKING O2 Academy3 Birmingham Thursday, Sep 2 KARMA SUITE, WE WRITERS, JACKPIE, 4 QUESTIONS ABOUT WHAT?, CARRIEANNE MCNALLY The Victoria Birmingham LOOCA, HOODOO FIFTIES, OPEN THEIR EYES, SONS OF THE DESERT, LOBSTER O2 Academy3 Birmingham FURTHEST FROM ITHACA, TSURIS, ADELAIDE ARCADE, VERITY’S BRIDE Actress & Bishop Birmingham TRADITIONAL SONG SESSION Kitchen Garden Cafe Kings Heath, Birmingham Friday, Sep 3 ROMANS, DULLER IN COLOUR, PANACEA DREAM, FOURQUARTER Actress & Bishop Birmingham SENCE, SLIM FIT GYM KIT, SEAN STEWART The Sunflower Lounge Birmingham THE NERKS, COMPLY OR DIES, SEVEN CROWNS The Adam & Eve Digbeth, Birmingham Saturday, Sep 4 CHIEF The Flapper Birmingham URBAN BLIGHT, THE SCEPTRES, THE LOVE TRIANGLE (matinee
Jonsi, August 9, 02 Academy, Birmingham performance) The Victoria Birmingham SICUM, THE BASHFUL ALBERT EXPERIENCE, THE WICKED MESSENGERS Actress & Bishop Birmingham MANGLED, FALLING DOWN, THE PIKES, RUNNING RIOT The Adam & Eve Digbeth, Birmingham Sunday, Sep 5 PRIMEVAL SOUP, GRIND THE ENEMY, SCARRED SOCIETY, BLACK MARIAS The Adam & Eve Digbeth, Birmingham BLACK MOUNTAIN Hare & Hounds Kings Heath, Birmingham UNDERLINE THE SKY, WHO’S DRIVING? BEAR’S DRIVING!, SAIL THE STARS, COWLEG Sound Bar Birmingham ARK Robin 2 Bilston, Wolverhampton Monday, Sep 6 KATH BLOOM Kitchen
Garden Cafe Kings Heath, Birmingham FURY, STEEL TROOPER, DEPRIVED Sound Bar Birmingham Tuesday, Sep 7 HEIGHTS O2 Academy3 Birmingham Wednesday, Sep 8 MODIFIED TOY ORCHESTRA Town Hall Birmingham THE LIKE The Rainbow Digbeth, Birmingham
AVENGE VULTURE ATTACK Actress & Bishop Birmingham THE CELTURIAN, FAR FUTURE, AGENTS OF THE FUTURE The Adam & Eve Digbeth, Birmingham THE FRIENDLY CAMPAIGN Sound Bar Birmingham ROBIN TROWER Robin 2 Bilston, Wolverhampton Friday, Sep 10 BARENAKED LADIES O2 Academy Bir-
Want your gig included in this guide? Email details to email@example.com. Thursday, Sep 9 JONSI O2 Academy Birmingham HATE THE FAITH, ODESSA, HUNGER FOR THIRST, SPLINTERSTONE, YOUR TRUTH BE VALIANT O2 Academy3 Birmingham THE BARLIGHTS,
mingham THE UPPERS, ON SCREEN HEROES, 4S A CROWD, THE COYOTES Actress & Bishop Birmingham CHANTEL MCGREGOR BAND The Little Civic Wolverhampton Saturday, Sep 11
THE MOODY BLUES LG Arena Birmingham CALORIES The Rainbow Digbeth, Birmingham BOM & HIS MAGIC DRUMSTICK, WINSTON ECHO, SIMON FOX The Victoria Birmingham HEADTRAP, MOTH-
SENNEN The Flapper Birmingham CHAOS ACOUSTIC NIGHT The Victoria Birmingham ZARA MCFARLANE The Public West Bromwich Tuesday, Sep 14 GABRIELLE APLIN The Flapper Birmingham
FADING LIGHTS, THE COSMICS O2 Academy3 Birmingham THE MONICAS The Adam & Eve Digbeth, Birmingham DIRTYSCORE, MEATFEAST Actress & Bishop Birmingham THE WILDERNESS OF MANITOBA Hare
op Birmingham SHANA TOVA, THE MILITANTS The Sunflower Lounge Birmingham ONLY AFTER DARK Sound Bar Birmingham SATURDAY, SEP 18 360! The Adam &
Save money and buy your gig tickets in advance at
ERLESS, PARADISE VALLEY, PICK YOUR WEAPON Actress & Bishop Birmingham TOM HINGLEY (INSPIRAL CARPETS) - SOLO ACOUSTIC Kasbah Coventry Sunday, Sep 12 WOLF PARADE The Glee Club Birmingham JANE TAYLOR Kitchen Garden Cafe Kings Heath, Birmingham Monday, Sep 13 WILLY MASON The Glee Club Birmingham
PIERRE BENSUSAN Robin 2 Bilston, Wolverhampton WEDNESDAY, SEP 15 TWO DOOR CINEMA CLUB O2 Academy2 Birmingham HALF MAN HALF BISCUIT Robin 2 Bilston, Wolverhampton THURSDAY, SEP 16 FRAMING HANLEY O2 Academy2 Birmingham JUST SURRENDER O2 Academy2 Birmingham TALLULAH FIX, ONE TON BULLET, THE
& Hounds Kings Heath, Birmingham RACEBANNON Sound Bar Birmingham CORINNE WEST & KELLY JOE PHELPS Robin 2 Bilston, Wolverhampton FRIDAY, SEP 17 JOANNA NEWSOM/ ROY HARPER Symphony Hall Birmingham WES FINCH & THE DIRTY BAND, DREAMERS NIGHTMARES, DON’T TOUCH THE WALLS, SAM ROGERS Actress & Bish-
Calories, September 11, The Rainbow, Digbeth
Eve Digbeth, Birmingham RED LIGHT ROOM, THE JACKDAWS, THIS MODERN YOUTH Actress & Bishop Birmingham FUN LOVIN CRIMINALS Wulfrun Hall Wolverhampton PAGE 44/THE SHOWER SCENE O2 Academy3 Birmingham STRANGLE KOJAK O2 Academy2 Birmingham THE ALAN PRICE SET Robin 2 Bilston, Wolverhampton NELL BRYDEN The Slade Rooms Wolverhampton SUNDAY, SEP 19 THE NEW TOWN KINGS, THE SUBDIVISIONS The Adam & Eve Digbeth, Birmingham BREED 77 O2 Academy3 Birmingham DELTA SPIRIT Hare & Hounds Kings Heath, Birmingham WRECKLESS ERIC & AMY RIGBY Kitchen Garden Cafe Kings Heath, Birmingham IN GRATITUDE, SCHOLARS Sound Bar Birmingham
Fun Lovin’ Criminals, September 18, Wulfrun Hall, Wolverhampton MONDAY, SEP 20 GONG HMV Institute Digbeth, Birmingham A LOSS FOR WORDS Sound Bar Birmingham TUESDAY, SEP 21 YASHIN O2 Academy3 Birmingham DENNIS LOCORRIERE Robin 2 Bilston, Wolverhampton WEDNESDAY, SEP 22 PETE MOLINARI The Glee Club Birmingham TOMMY REILLY The Rainbow Digbeth, Birmingham THE VOID PRESENTS... The Adam & Eve Digbeth, Birmingham THURSDAY, SEP 23 MGMT O2 Academy Birmingham BRING ME THE HORIZON/CANCER BATS/ TEK-ONE O2 Academy2 Birmingham NO AMERICANA, RAVEN VANCELLE, PERRIN EMPIRE O2 Academy3 Birmingham TINY TIN LADY The Glee Club Birmingham GIRLYMAN Hare & Hounds Kings Heath, Birmingham
HOWARD JONES Robin 2 Bilston, Wolverhampton PULLED APART BY HORSES The Flapper Birmingham ALPHA DE MUSICA Sound Bar Birmingham FRIDAY, SEP 24 TANTRUMS, THE ARCADIAN KICKS, MISSDAVINALEE, CAJOLE CAJOLE Sound Bar Birmingham THE ED PUDDICK DANCE BAND (SUGARFOOT STOMP 6TH BIRTHDAY PARTY) Hare & Hounds Kings Heath, Birmingham HAYSEED DIXIE The Slade Rooms Wolverhampton LITTLE DRAGON The Temple at HMV Institute Digbeth, Birmingham ELLIOT MINOR O2 Academy2 Birmingham KARMA SUITE, NAKED REMEDY, PAN & THE POETS Island Bar Birmingham TURN OFF THE SUN, BATTLE FOR PRAGUE, LAST GASP, SLIM FIT GYM KIT Actress & Bishop Birmingham CAPTAIN HORIZON, THE GLASS GODS The Sunflower Lounge
Birmingham THE COOPERS The Adam & Eve Digbeth, Birmingham THE CELTURIAN, SPACE ODIC SAMURAI Solihull Theatre Arts Complex Solihull SATURDAY, SEP 25 THE LAST SUPPER O2 Academy2 Birmingham FYFE DANGERFIELD The Library at HMV Institute Digbeth, Birmingham NEDS ATOMIC DUSTBIN HMV Institute Birmingham HEROICA, CROOKED DAWN, BLUE NATION, STAVEHEART Actress & Bishop Birmingham LOS PACAMINOS FEAT PAUL YOUNG Robin 2 Wolverhampton SUNDAY, SEP 26 ACEY SLADE The Asylum Hockley, Birmingham PATSY MATHESON WITH CLIVE GREGSON Kitchen Garden Cafe Kings Heath, Birmingham PAUL HEATON The Glee Club Birmingham 3OH!3 O2 Academy2 Birmingham LAMOUR LA MORGUE O2 Academy2 Birmingham
THE CRIMES, THE RIPPS, BLEMISH, THE TWO EIGHTS O2 Academy3 Birmingham SILENT FILTER UNPLUGGED Sound Bar Birmingham DOGS Kasbah Coventry MONDAY, SEP 27 ROSE ELINOR DOUGALL O2 Academy3 Birmingham THE JOY FORMIDABLE, CHAPEL CLUB O2 Academy2 Birmingham TUESDAY, SEP 28 BURY TOMORROW O2 Academy3 Birmingham DETACHMENTS Hare & Hounds Kings Heath, Birmingham OCEANSIZE/THIS TOWN NEEDS GUNS/ MOJO FURY O2 Academy2 Birmingham GLENN HUGHES & BAND Robin 2 Bilston, Wolverhampton MARK RONSON & THE BUSINESS INTL HMV Institute Digbeth, Birmingham MAX RAPTOR The Slade Rooms Wolverhampton WEDNESDAY, SEP 29 DEAN FRIEDMAN Robin 2 Bilston, Wolverhampton THURSDAY, SEP 30 MAYDAY PARADE/ THE MAINE O2 Academy2 Birmingham JAY DALLEY O2 Academy3 Birmingham HERESY, AND FATE WAS FOOLISH Actress & Bishop Birmingham JOHN COOPER CLARK Robin 2 Bilston, Wolverhampton
The September edition of Brum Notes Magazine, featuring local heroes Calories and their favourite city haunts, Wolverhampton's finest The Li...