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p i lot i s s u e

HUDDERSFIELD MUSIC MAGAZINE

//SPIDA LEE //SONS OF MISCHEIF //WOBBLY BOB //ONE STOP RAILWAY //AND MUCH MORE


Hear & Now Magazine...Welcome! It is with great pleasure that I introduce to you this new Huddersfield music scene magazine. Every artist, group, and even writer is connected with the town in some way, whether as a local resident, a university student or a regular contributor to the Huddersfield music scene. A few months ago, we came to a realisation – that there is so much music and creativity in the area and no one is covering it. Well here we are, a magazine devoted to artists and bands to hopefully help promote them and the scene as a whole. For this winter issue, you do have a treat. Featured bands include the one and only Sons of Mischief, and University of Huddersfield Battle of the Bands winners Silent Circus. Also, we have an exclusive interview with Huddersfield hip hop legend, Spida Lee as well as a selection of reviews from autumn shows and releases. We hope you enjoy this make sure you spread the word. If you do, we’ll do it again! David Rangel – Editor Staff: David Rangel - Editor/PM Lucas Jubb- Design/PM Andrew Raymond - Writer Mark Tomlinson - Writer Jenny Miller - Writer Ahmed Haroon - Writer Laura Prestbury - Writer Matt Hill - Writer

david@theoxiigenclub.com


SPIDA LEE// // Exclusive interview with Huddersfield hiphop legend, Spida Lee on his latest EP Make Money part II

In your opinion, what should future MCs do to get their music played on mainstream radio support? What I did basically was get involved with a PR firm, and they pushed my songs out to radio stations and TV stations and magazines. You sometimeshave to pay for your stuff to be heard and otherwise there can be no other way. How do you see the growth of the local hip hop scene here in Huddersfield? It is definitely growing. There are MC nights going on all the time like Hip Hop Champloo and Beats and Pieces, which are drawing in a lot of crowds. But the people who organize them

they are from all over, so it’s more of a West Yorkshire thing rather than a Huddersfield thing. How did you start out as an MC? Can you cite your musical influences? I started when I was about 8 years old. I was involved in a rap group and we’d have MCing competitions with other MC groups and since then I have been on it. We used to get a record player and a tape recorder, which a microphone attached to it and we’d spit rhymes on the tape recorder. And if there would be any disrupting sound in the background we’d have to start again. We actually made our first


album that way back in high school. I am an old school person now. (laughs) Can you cite your musical influences? Just 90s hip hop and R’n’B - East and West Coast American stuff ‘till about the early 2000s. An interesting thing about the first two EP tracks, there are little dialogues taking place between different street gang members, was that sampled from Hollywood films? Yes. My plan was originally to make an album inspired the by the film called “The Broncs Tale” but I scrapped the album idea but thought I’d release short EP series three or four tracks. This EP has snippet references from the film. The first dialogue on Make Money track is all about making money in a gang and what lengths do gang members resort to make cash. The 2nd track on your EP, Mic Fool , is it about being a wannabe songwriter or MC by any chance? Yes, it’s just about making it in the music business and never giving up really. ‘Cause some people think it’s going to happen straight but it actually takes a long time. What is your opinion of electropop music having seeped into urban music and totally turned the face of pop music as a whole? Can’t stand it. I just think it’s turned to ‘Hip-Pop’. I just don’t it’s the

same anymore. I don’t play it in my house anyway. Can you talk about some of your collaborations on your EP? The EP was produced by local talent Miss Tofelees and features members from Practical Heads, my first hip hop crew and Belinda Hards from a crew Knew Jeru’slum, who’s also a label mate. Make Money Part 2, the title track is basically a continuation of a song that I did on my first solo album. The Foundation has Chief Wigz from Leeds, another label mate. Ever thought of doing a concept album? I am trying to do a story-telling album at the moment but I don’t know about a whole concept record because I find it a bit boring. I like talking about different things. Any hopes for the future? Just to keep on making music and to see where it takes me. Go spidalee

to for

facebook.com/ more information

written by Ahmed Haroon


ACOUSTIC REVOLUTIONARiES Huddersfield acoustic music night launches music downloads website Acoustic Revolutionaries, Huddersfield’s bi-monthly programme of acoustic music organised by The Media Centre, is launching a new website featuring live recordings from over thirty bands and musicians who have performed at the popular event. What’s more, users can download their favourite tracks absolutely free, to listen again at their convenience. Acoustic Revolutionaries, based at The Media Centre’s Café Ollo, has been running since March 2007 and since then has grown to be a premier showcase for young Kirklees-based musicians aged between 16 and 25. The concept was devised by Programme and Marketing Manager for the Centre, Clare Danek; the events are organised and delivered by local music successes Ruby Wood and Noah Burton. Performers have included local hip hop

heroes Extra Curricular, the award winning human beatbox Ball-Zee, accomplished jazz guitarist Graham Garside, and a host of other musicians from bluegrass in the west to world music from the east. Danek said, “Acoustic Revolutionaries has grown to be an established feature in the local events calendar, and the new website gives more people chance to hear great bands and musicians. It’s great that The Media Centre can support talent in this way. The website can be found at www. acousticrevolutionaries.co.uk


Image from left to Nathan Mills (drums guitarist - featured


o right: Maddy Sutton (keys), s), Adam Findlay (lead singer/ d) & Sam Mercer (bass)

SILENT CIRCuS// // Fresh from recording their debut EP and have just announced some major gigs, Jenny Miller catches up with the band.

S

ilent Circus, an alternative/rock band from Huddersfield, West Yorkshire, are fresh from recording their debut EP and have just announced some major gigs. Jenny Miller catches up with lead singer and guitarist Adam Findlay to discuss how he and the band feel about their rising success and what great achievements are in the pipeline. First of all you’ve recently announced you will be supporting well established indie band One Night Only during Huddersfields Freshers’ Week, will this be one of your biggest gigs to date? Yes. To date we’ve only supported the fantastic local talent that Huddersfield has to offer. And I’m sure you agree, there is a lot of musical talent in Huddersfield. There is plenty of things music related for us to get excited about however! Are you more excited or nervous? Or do gigs just come naturally to you? Well when we are on stage, the whole nerves side of playing live disappears. However, it is well documented that I’m a nervous wreck before I go on stage to the point where I feel rather ill at big gigs. So, at this stage I’d say it was definite excitement, but on the night I’ll be a bag of nerves until I hit the first chord then we’re all away! As for the others I know Sam likes to have a few pre gig drinks to loosen himself up a bit. Our new drummer Nathan (Mills) apparently doesn’t get too nervous and


Maddy deals with her nerves very well. I generally tend to get myself psyched up. As a band from a smaller town, do you feel it can be harder to get recognition? Huddersfield, although a hive of local talent is dreadful for exposure to the point of where now, we look elsewhere for promotion. Luckily, we have a fantastic management team and devoted set of fans that help us where they can and we are talking to high profile industry representatives who are giving us new insights into how to further our careers. The only problem with having a town full of bands is that a lot of people don’t always see all the musicians there is to see which is why Freshers is very important to us as a band. Do you feel students are more appreciative and supportive then? I feel it depends on what type of person the student is. Battle Of The Bands attracted a certain clientele of people but we need to branch out a bit further and transcend audiences. We do have a following of adults who are also big fans of our music so it’s not all doom and gloom. Last year, it was difficult to attract people to gigs but I feel this year will be different. Students love music, that’s a fact. Very true. Do you feel as winners of Battle of the Bands last year there is more pressure to perform? And do you feel this is the best competition in Huddersfield for bands to get noticed? I feel there will be the obvious feelings of jealousy that we won but we don’t walk around with our ego’s held high, we aren’t that sort of band. The only thing we are interested in is having a good time and entertaining people. My view point is haters are going to hate but if I can perform and people in that

room have a great night, then we’ve done what we set out to do. We aren’t rockstars, we’re still just a bunch of kids in our eyes. So I suppose to answer your question, no I don’t feel any pressure to perform because I know we’ll be good enough. As for best competition, it got us where we are today so it has to count for something ey! Definitely. How has recruiting a new drummer affected the band? Well it was lucky for us that Nathan is one of my best friends and is also friends with our old drummer Callum. We all get on really well with Nathan so it’s like a family now. As a transition, Nathan brings new ideas to the table so we’re very excited to get the ball rolling. What was it like recording your EP? The EP was an absolute blast to record! We had a fantastic day in the recording studio getting the favourite tracks we had written recorded. These songs are always our most popular live so it was a no brainer to get them recorded. It’s been pretty well received and we have a free download up on our Facebook page. As you only formed in September 2010, do you feel this has happened quite quickly? I don’t think it matters when a band forms, I think if the ingredients are there to make something great then who cares how long it takes? Yeah, you have to learn your craft, but we’re almost a year in, look how far we’ve come! And look where we’re going. It’s very exciting to be a part of something and we’re very proud of what we’ve achieved in the amount of time. Agreed, it is a great achievement. Where did you record the EP? Chairworks Studio in Castleford. How did it feel to finally get your songs recorded properly in a studio environment? It was weird hearing them in their fully


mastered state because I actually can’t stand to hear my singing voice. It’s weird, I just go all funny inside and get really embarrassed. I was really happy with how they came out though and I think it captures little bits of exactly what we’re all about. I mean, it incorporates a lot of our personalities and each member of the band is proud of what we’ve achieved. It’s obviously been a success because your upcoming gigs include a date in London, do you feel it will be any different to your gigs closer to home? It’s more pressure because the venue we’re playing at in London is big on the Southern scene. It will be a different audience and different vibe, we’re a northern band travelling south so I can’t wait to see if we go down well! What’s the venue? The Bedford That’s pretty impressive, where do you hope to go from here? There are things in the pipeline for a mini tour. Not to mention a couple of things in the pipeline regarding supporting big bands on smaller tours. We’ve also got the Grosvenor Casino gig which we’re really looking forward to. Can you reveal any more info on the gig at the Grosvenor Casino, are you headlining? Yeah. It’s part of their big Freshers Week promotion. They’re decking out the Casino with a stage and big PA system and during the Freshers Fayre handing out free drinks/bets etc to invite people down on Saturday 24th September for a night of music in a casino, how cool is that? Pretty cool, I like the fact that a gig in a casino is rarely done. It’s going to be amazing. I recommend everyone come down to see it as well as the One Night Only show in the Student

Union two days prior. I’m sure both will attract a lot of people. Finally what do you hope to have done by this time next year? The future is always uncertain but where I’d love to be, although its everybody’s dream, is on a stage at one of the major festivals. The BBC Introducing stage is where we hope to be as a band and I think our future at this time looks bright indeed. Go to facebook.com/silentcircusuk for more information and a free download of Scandal. written by Jenny Miller


FOR LOVE AND HATE

+ SUPPORT PARISH CLUB

Being the place to be if you want a taste of Huddersfield’s punk/rock and metal scene, The Parish’s miniature gig venue never disappoints… So for a night of hardcore, the bands on the bill for For Love and Hate took no prisoners. With supporting acts like Lovelife, Atlas and Swimming with Sharks, it’s no surprise that the crowd were more than warmed up for the final act. All three of these obscure bands marched on stage, one after another, tearing up the room with some thrashy hardcore; intense death growls, furious guitar slamming and enough distortion to moisten your ears. So when female dominated posthardcore band For Love and Hate took the stage, the well awaited mosh-pits filled the floor without hesitation… Songs from their up and coming EP were fired out like bullets; lead vocalist, Mya, howled from the bottom of her lungs with unbridled passion as tattoo ridden, guitarist sang her own verses. Each band member thrashed out every song manically on their instruments as

if they possessed hatred towards them. Half way through the set, in celebration of their friend’s birthday, they brought her on stage and played there own disturbing rendition of ‘Happy Birthday’ – screamo style… After they had finished claiming the eardrums of all those present, feedback echoed throughout the venue, drawing the gig to an end, and it was clear to see that their crowd were satisfied after a good night of torrential hardcore. I strongly recommend that you go and see all of these bands. written by Laura Prestbury


OS TNO EP

RAILWAY + SUPPORT at BAR 122

One Stop Railway headlined a show of local talent as they played a farewell concert as one of their members is departing for university. First up was acoustic duo Bisley who were a nice way to start the evening but unfortunately played for too long causing their set to drag on. Next up young trio Dirty Green Vinyl hit the stage and seem to have revived an old school garage punk sound, however they soon hit a groove of

indie pop showing potential for a young band. Penultimate band The Lost Cassettes look like they would sound like Kasabian but come across more like The Eighties Matchbox B-Line Disaster whilst they fire through a high energy set. Unfortunately when the headliners, One Stop Railway, make their way onstage most of the crowd have dispersed, this does not deter the band who are on good form and seem to be really enjoying themselves. They play an upbeat brand of indie whilst various members keep entering the crowd during the show. One Stop Railway were having lots of fun and this was portrayed in the music as they sounded good throughout, Mr. Hyde particularly stood out and the band sounded even better when they speeded things up. Overall the night was really good with plenty of Huddersfield’s local talent showing there are good things happening in the area. written by Matt Hill


sons of mischief// //If you had started to miss Huddersfield band Far From the Dance, have no fear, former members Alec Townsend, Jake Miller and Thom Thornton are back under a new guise; Sons of Mischief. Jenny Miller catches up with them to discuss what’s been keeping them busy, what really happens on tour and working in the same studios as Elbow.


Your sound takes influence from a range of genres such as indie/rock/ Britpop/grunge. Does having different influences make it harder to make your music as a group? Alec: We all have slightly different influences. Me and Thom were definitely majorly influenced by bands through the 90’s Such as Radiohead, Placebo, Supergrass as well as all the Britpop bands. I’d say there are a lot of shared influences between us these days, although I’m sure there are a few guilty pleasures kicking about. Jake: Britpop passed me by really although I do hold it in high regard retrospectively. As a kid I was more into bands like Nirvana, Soundgarden, Pearl Jam etc as well as a lot of heavier bands. Thom: We’ve been writing and playing music together for so long now the writing process is very fluid. This sound is also different from your old band Far From The Dance, is change a good thing in this case? Alec: We think so. With FFTD the sound was a lot more dance orientated with elements of psychedelic prog rock stuff but now we’re a three piece it’s been great to get back to our roots & just rock out. Jake: I think in terms of the writing process, moving back to more straight up rock has been a natural one, although we still try to keep an element of the prog side of things alive in the live shows. You’re going to record your debut E.P at the same studios that Elbow record at (Blueprint Studios, Manchester) and


your producer Fredrick Kindt has also worked with Phantom Band and Cherry Ghost. These are all well known names, does this make you feel even closer to ‘making it?’ Or is it all just very exciting? Alec: I wouldn’t say it makes us feel closer to ‘making it’ but it is a great experience being surrounded by artists you respect. Recording your music in the same environments for us does give you the feeling that you’re making something of consequence. Thom: It was really amazing to have Elbow banging out ‘Build A Rocket Boys!’ upstairs as well as characters like Mike Joyce from The Smiths popping in. Jake: Fred’s a great producer and we all got on really well from the start, the fact he’s worked with some established acts really gives you a boost when he’s into what we’re making. Also it was great to have part of the old team back together with our Sound Engineer from FFTD, Oli Hutchinson, working with us again while he was on a break from touring Europe with Wild Beasts. Does this prove in order to succeed; it is who you know not what you know? Jake: I think in music there has been and always will be an element of moving forward from knowing the right people but to keep any kind of longevity in the industry it’s all down to the public getting behind you.

You’re also lining up a UK tour. Will it live up to the rock ‘n’ roll image of no sleep, large quantities of alcohol and many a groupie? Or will you all really be tucked up in bed by 10? Alec: Touring is great fun and probably the most enjoyable part of being in a band for us, just because you’re playing your music night after night to different crowds. Thom: The UK tours we did as FFTD definitely lived up to the stereotypical image you think of. Lots of booze, hazy after parties, very little sleep, groupies & breaking down on the M62... How do city gigs compare with playing in Huddersfield? Have you found different vibes in different places? Jake: Most towns/cities have different vibes and its great playing to a fresh audience but we obviously love playing home town gigs. There is always a great feeling of camaraderie between the band and the crowd. Although we’ve been really enjoying the London shows lately. Thom: There’s a similar homecoming feeling with London these days from the years we spent living down there as FFTD. Alec: We obviously enjoy playing in Huddersfield but other than trips back to London and the one off gigs we’ve played in Manchester, Leeds, Liverpool, Brighton & Chester we’re anxious to get on the road and sample more places with the new sound. What’s been your biggest gig to date? And your favourite?


being high on the priority list. Jake: For me, our best gig as Far From The Dance was at the O2 Wireless in London so it would be great to get back on to hitting the Festivals with Sons Of Mischief asap. There’s literally so many great smaller festivals popping up in the UK these days the possibilities for up and coming bands are excellent. Thom: For me obviously Glastonbury would be a must but we’d love to get out of the UK over to Europe & America for their festival scenes when the opportunities arise. And finally, where do you hope to go from here? We’re first and foremost back at Blueprint with Fred recording our debut E.P then onto a UK tour. The listings will hopefully be up by mid October on sonsofmischief.co.uk. After that there are exciting plans in motion but we can’t go into details just yet so watch this space... We’re starting up ‘Smuggler’s Cove’, a monthly night on the 3rd Saturday of every month at The BlueRooms, which if nothing else will be a big visual spectacle... Feel free to come and join us for limited free drinks and cupcakes from 8pm, first come first served!

Alec: We’ve only had the current outfit on the road for a number of months but for me the gig at Brighton’s Great Escape Festival was a highlight. The city was buzzing with people and creativity and by the end of our show the venue was absolutely packed. Jake: As Al says, Sons of Mischief is very much in its infancy so the biggest venue in size we’ve played to press is probably The Cockpit in Leeds. A personal favourite gig for me was the launch party we played in London this summer for ‘Storm in a Teacup’ alongside Australian singer/songwriter Steve Smyth (one of my big tips for 2012...) Thom: Another stand out gig I’d say was our last visit to Bar 122 in Huddersfield. It was great to play with our producer’s band The Slow Show, definitely worth a look. Your sound would fit in well with the festival scene at the moment, is it a dream of yours to play at a festival? If for more info visit so, which ones and why? www.facebook.com/SonsOfMischief Alec: This year we played a couple with Great Escape in Brighton & Sound written by Jenny Miller City in Liverpool along with some more locally run events. Next year we’d love to hit a lot more with Glastonbury


FIVE MINUTE LIMIT// \\SO USELESS REVIEW

Five Minute Limit - So Useless Choosing a band name such as Five Minute Limit is surely asking for trouble. Imagine the fun journalists could have: ‘It’s a pity the song didn’t have a four minute limit’ or ‘Let’s hope the album only has a five minute limit’. Oh how we would laugh. Fortunately for FML, this cracking slice of guitar driven power pop will ensure the critics will have to keep their powder dry for another day. writtern by Mark Tomlinson

spida lee// //make money part 2

Huddersfield MC Spida Lee releases his 3-track EP Make Money Part 2. Being an advocate of old school hip hop sounds, the title track is reminiscent of smooth 1960s soul-jazz brass arrangements and talks about gang culture realities of extorting money in tough economic times. Mic Fool’s a 60s soulfunk inspired track with a strong string-brass layered sample, great for some midnight club dancing - concepts links between gun culture and being a Rap wannabe. The R’n’B slice Party Life choruses on about hooking up with different people. It’s certainly an outcry for Hip Hop to return to its roots. written by Ahmen Haroon


No PretensE// //Horror Epicz EP Review

In a reality where George A. Romero, Stanley Kubrick, Rick Rubin and the Wu-Tang Clan have combined their talents to form a rap group then we’d probably have something amazing, of course, but we’d also have a piece of work that could be compared to No Pretense’s latest EP Horror Epicz.I may be guilty of some hyperbole but Horror Epicz is truly a work from dark and gifted minds, from the start an eerie atmosphere pervades, with melancholic strings and devilish guitar lines creating the perfect setting for some gruesome and blood soaked wordplay ; “My entrails leave blood trails of an afterlife..” Some listeners maybe snobbish about them keeping their Yorkshire accents but do we really need any more cockney or London sounding MCs? The hub of British hip hop has always been London and a few other areas in the South of England but Horror Epicz will certainly raise awareness and bring some serious attention to the North. written by Andrew Raymond


wobbly bob//

//life lessons for losers To put it bluntly, if you need cheering up, listen to this. Huddersfield based Wobbly Bob aren’t your traditional Ska Punk band, but, like many, they build their material upon what’s important to them and their listeners; getting wasted. ‘Life Lessons for Losers’ does exactly what it says on the tin, uplifting your spirits with a handful of quirky and unmistakably catchy anthems. Horns and off beat rhythmic guitars, equipped with fun, playful lyrics and boisterous vocals. ‘Hey! Kimosabe’ appears to be the soft, warm centre of the album, with its lyrical simplicity and feel good chorus. Whereas upbeat, high energy tracks like ‘Rock this Place’ and ‘Let’s Get Wasted’ sees the bands love for partying and will undoubtedly get you in the mood to do so. With songs like ‘Captain Hell Yeah!’ (which sounds suspiciously familiar to the theme for ‘Sponge Bob Square Pants’, and yet, just as lovable) and ‘That’s What She Said’, it’s quite clear that this album isn’t meant to be too serious, it is meant to remind you that life’s too short to dwell upon unfortunate mishaps… So get some good Northern Ska Punk down your throat.- Laura Prestbury


Hope you enjoyed the issue. if you want to be part of the next issue then please contact us on

info@theoxiigenclub.com

Hear & Now: Pilot Release  

A pilot music magazine for Huddersfield, covering local artists from all genres.

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