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From paintshop to barbershop...
the lounge kittens answer dumbass questions
ALSO INSIDE - bloc party | vicki musselwhite | xmas and new year event round up
ENGINE ROOMS LIVE LISTINGS
UPCOMING EVENTS 27
FRIDAY 27TH NOVEMBER
SATURDAY 28TH NOVEMBER
SUNDAY 29TH NOVEMBER
SATURDAY 19TH DECEMBER
FRIDAY 22ND JANUARY
SATURDAY 20TH FEBRUARY
(FEAT. CHRIS JERICHO)
WEDNESDAY 2ND DECEMBER
WE ARE SCIENTISTS
THURSDAY 3RD DECEMBER
HEAVEN’S BASEMENT FEAT. DANNY WARSNOP
04 SILENT SCREAMS FRIDAY 4TH DECEMBER
PLUS THE BROWNING, CAPTURE THE CROWN & WALKING WITH STRANGERS
08710 220 0260 (24HR HOTLINE)
FRIDAY 18TH DECEMBER
TRIBUTE TO AC/DC
PLUS CROBOT, SCORPION CHILD & BUFFALO SUMMER
THE LOUNGE KITTENS CHRISTMAS CABARET
PLAYING INFERNAL LOVE IN FULL
SATURDAY 20TH FEBRUARY
THE CRAIG CHARLES
FEB FUNK & SOUL CLUB
04 THE WONDER STUFF FRIDAY 4TH MARCH
Thanks for picking up the December 2015 Issue of Southampton Music Magazine, your one stop guide to the best music in the city. This month we hook up with reformed rock legends the Darkness to talk tours, new members and sock eating (no really). We also have a chat with harmonious quintet The Overtones ahead of their O2 Guildhall show and we have a very silly Dumbass Questions session with The Lounge Kittens who are back with another Xmas Cabaret event. Plus we round up the best of all of the cityâ€™s festive events for Xmas and New Year so you donâ€™t have to. All this plus previews, listings and announcements for all of the best venues and events in the area.
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T H E
P RE S E NTS
LIVE LISTINGS 02 DEC
WEDNESDAY 2ND DECEMBER
STRAY FROM THE PATH
WEDNESDAY 20TH JANUARY
ALIEN ANT FARM OLD FIRESTATION, BOURNEMOUTH
05 THE BOHICAS
SATURDAY 5TH DECEMBER
TALKING HEADS, SOUTHAMPTON
TUESDAY 8TH DECEMBER
THURSDAY 17TH DECEMBER
SUNDAY 21ST FEBRUARY
THE CROOKES TALKING HEADS, SOUTHAMPTON
FRIDAY 26TH FEBRUARY
CJ WILDHEART JOINERS, SOUTHAMPTON
MONDAY 29TH FEBRUARY
FEB & ALESTORM
SOUND CIRCUS, BOURNEMOUTH
O2 GUILDHALL, SOUTHAMPTON
FRIDAY 18TH DECEMBER
087 10 220 0260 (24HR HOTLINE)
S E E T I C K E T S . CO M
TUESDAY 08TH MARCH
TALKING HEADS, SOUTHAMPTON
G I G A N T I C . CO M
T H E M J R G R O U P. CO M
“The Darkness will make you shit in your pants, in a good way” exclaims eccentric frontman Justin Hawkins. Yup, it sure is good to have the hard rocking, catsuit wearing, acrobatic performing, flamboyant troubadours Justin & Dan Hawkins (guitar), Frankie Poullain (bass) and newly indoctrinated drummer Rufus Tiger Taylor back on the scene.
after having caught their not-so-secret set at Download festival where punters surrounded the Maverick tent in the drizzle to rock out with no hope of peaking inside, it’s clear that the UK has not forgotten and, in fact, has already assumed the brace position, ready to accept the full onslaught of The Darkness.
Armed with a new album‘Last of Our Kind’ which is squished full of rock n roll bangers infused with the unmistakable wail of Justin’s signature falsetto and over-laced with tongue in cheek monologues, The Darkness are clearly throwing everything they’ve got into reminding us that they are still here and still absolute champions of their craft. And
After a busy festival-filled summer they jumped into their space-bus and headed out for a whirlwind round the world tour which has already left fans in the States, Europe and Australia gasping for breath. We nabbed a few minutes on the phone with big-haired bassist Frankie to get his thoughts on their comeback, the new album and sock eating…”
southampton MUSIC | december 2015
Where are you right now and how many minutes has it been since you had your bass guitar in your hands? Outside the bus trying to get phone reception ha ha! Good question, this is a disgrace, but the last time I had a bass in my hands was when I handed it to my guitar tech, my best technician I should say, a gentleman by the name of Ollie, after the gig at Download Festival in the Maverick tent. I walked off, and straight into promo, can you believe it? After a show like that! I asked for a beer, and they looked at me like I’d said my name was Adolf Hitler or something. These days you’re not allowed. They don’t like it when you drink when you’re doing promo. That’s how ‘corporate’ rock has become. The bankers are way more rock ‘n’ roll than the rock ‘n’ rollers. How was Download? We couldn’t get into the tent… I could hardly get in! It was extremely difficult to cram our collective egos on to the stage. It was incredible, I have to say. We were behind the screen, just waiting to go on, and we could just feel it. The hairs on the back of my neck stood up, in fact the hairs ever ywhere were standing up, even public hair, and it takes a lot for public hair to stand up because it has to detangle. It’s quite course and bristly as well. But Download really was incredible. Then we actually walked out there and myself, Dan and Rufus had come up with this idea that with the intro to Barbarian, we’d keep going until Justin had made it to the stage having come through the crowd. It was such a success. We had ten Viking re-enactment people there. They had their shields up and they formed like a Guard of Honour, with Justin lying on the shields occasionally standing up to wave to the crowd. The Darkness have always sported a strong look, what can we expect from your wardrobe on tour? I went to Ray Brown, the costume designer. He made it big in the 80s, he pretty much designed the 80s hair metal look, he did Judas Priest, Bon Jovi and Motley Crue. He designed the whole kind of outlaw/pirate/ bohemian look. I have this flamenco style shirt which I’ve only worn once, to a press and fan club lunch, so I’m going to get that altered. He’s adjusted the collar for me. I have to keep up with Dan and Justin now!
come out too much. So I’m really pleased with this one because it’s much chunkier and fatter sounding. There’s a lot of emotion in it. The idea was really to emote. It wasn’t something we planned, but that’s what happened. I guess looking back it was a way of possibly altering people’s perceptions, perhaps to encourage them not to look at the clichés all the time and accept that this band are bonkers but that we don’t just wear cat suits all the time, you know? You provide vocals for the final song ‘Conquerors’ – how did that come about? Was it something you’d always wanted to do or did you all feel like mixing it up a bit? It was spontaneous, y ’know? It came from the lyrics and the vibe and everything. It came from the subconscious. Dan was playing the arpeggio that opens the song, and it just clicked something in me and I started singing. Now thinking about it, the words in the first verse just came spontaneously, so that was all intact, and the melody, the whole song was intact, but we were kind of stuck for a while and Dan suggested the word ‘conqueror ’, to hang all these abstract emotions on, and immediately it felt like the right way to go. It’s like an epic rendition of regret and defiance. I think the theme of the album, looking back, is defiance. Even the historical songs like Barbarian and Roaring Waters, involve people of the past, the Barbarians, the East Anglians, during the Viking invasion, really had to show defiance. The rest of the songs are dealing more with emotional courage and adversity. When you’re faced with situations in relationships and life in general and the challenges that come from being a band that were once ver y successful and high profile, having to go through the struggles, having to lose a member, and the sadness of losing Ed. I think all those things and the professional relationships that we have, all those life incidents bled into the album. You can hear that through the lyrics, despite what people might think he’s not singing about fast cars and loose women, he’s singing, and I’m singing on that one song, about personal issues.
At the moment Dan & Justin are rocking these incredible suits. Justin’s got this kind of cross between David Bowie and Alexis from Dynasty suit, massive shoulder pads, electric blue satin, high waisted trousers, big flares, and it just pops, it’s a beautiful suit. It’s the epitome of The Darkness’ aesthetic as on first impression it looks ridiculous, but then your eye just keeps coming back to it and you realise it’s beautiful, it’s only ridiculous because we’re brainwashed to think that something loud and out there with strange angles is ridiculous. Last Of Our Kind is finally out, how does it feel to have unleashed it on the world? Personally it’s the proudest I’ve ever been of anything we’ve done. I had a problem when Permission to Land came out because it didn’t have enough bottom end, drum and bass-wise. Of course I knew that the top end was really excellent, with Justin’s vocals and the guitar solos, and Dan’s guitar, but the bottom end didn’t
southampton MUSIC |december 2015
So, Rufus has joined the band. Where did you find him and what do we need to know about him? The connection was Brian May’s guitar tech, Pete Malandrone. He’d suggested Rufus when we’d already employed Emily (Dolan). Emily did the album with us, and we did intend to carry on with Emily, but she found it hard to make the sacrifices, she wasn’t really relishing being away for a long time and I think you have to have the attitude where you relish the sacrifice because all art in a loose sense of the word is a sacrifice to the Gods if you like, he he. You have to relish that sacrifice and the whole package. If you start dissecting it you can’t do 150 gigs a year and give it your all, y’know? So Rufus came on board and his first day was the day we had to do a press lunch at the new Gibson showroom. But Rufus wasn’t arriving until about 6am that day on a flight from Australia. So by the time he got to London it was 9-10 o’clock, and he had to come straight to a three hour rehearsal, where he learned the five songs we were playing - he hadn’t slept for 24 hours - then straight into a photo shoot, and to the gig. He did really well! He’s got a great sense of humour, and has injected some youth and vitality into the band. He’s just what we need at the moment. He’s also made each of us 15% more attractive just by standing next to us with his golden aura! There’s not many people that can pull off wearing a white safari suit, how did you land on your eccentric style? To be honest I’m not sure I carried it off! I think it was a mistake to wear it on stage but off stage and at an award show I feel quite comfortable in it. It’s something you wear when you’re taking a picture. Also I think the sweat stains are quite elegant. I think normally sweat stains are quite crude but sweat stains on a white safari suit remind me of Tarzan and the apes. Like the explorers of the 19th century in the Congo. Award shows in the music industry are also like being in the jungle, because the music industry are wild, kind of ferocious, animals just waiting to devour you. I should have a machete tucked away somewhere in case a tiger or a jaguar decides to devour me with their seductive bullshit. Recently one of your fans ate their own socks to secure meeting you. If you had to eat socks, which kind of socks would you choose? I would eat edible socks. Probably rice paper socks. As well as playing the bass, you also provide the allimportant cow bell section of The Darkness. We’ve discovered that the combination of you and a cow bell is so overwhelming to some of the population that there is a Facebook group called The Cow Belles dedicated entirely to you, allowing fans to discuss their deepest feelings about this phenomenon. Is that a bit weird? Or possibly
the coolest thing that’s ever happened? Harmless. I think the cow bell is an underrated instrument and deserves it’s time to shine. So much so that I’ve even wrapped mine in tin foil so it shines even brighter to enjoy its brief period in the lime light. I didn’t imagine it would go on for so long really, it’s been going on for a good 18 months now, this Cow Belle thing, but all good things come to an end…I’ve been introducing the tambourine but it hasn’t been having the same effect… During the band’s hiatus you wrote a warts and all autobiography, was it supported by the rest of the band or was it a bridge that had to be crossed when the band got back together? I didn’t see it as an autobiography because of course I’m not important enough to write an autobiography. I tried it make it into something silly and irreverent, and it was structured kind of like a self-help book. I just did it for a laugh, some people find it amusing. I tried to make it into an anti- sex drugs and rock ‘n’ roll book, so it was about begging for sex, smuggling drugs, and pretending to be rock ‘n’ roll, that was the concept behind it. It was based on the fact that in my teenage years I was begging for sex, in my 20s I was smuggling drugs, and in my 30s I was pretending to be rock ‘n’ roll.
How tall are you and are you the tallest member of the band? We’re all almost the same, myself, Rufus and Dan, around 6’ 2”, so Rufus sits well with us. I noticed this particularly at Download; since the 90s rock has become more of an expression of naked emotion, damaged people, I guess it’s an angry thing, and some people say that shorter men are more angry. I mean, I don’t say that, it’s quite a harsh thing to say but I noticed that anger was the currency in lots of 90s rock music, and there were a lot of people of more, er, diminutive stature, at Download.
If you could go back to 2002, just before it all took off, what advice would you give 2002-Frankie? ( Very long pause…) Frankie are you still there? Hang on, I’m time travelling, it takes a while! To be honest I can’t remember 2002, it’s a blur. I’ve gotten to 2004, I can remember that, and 2003 I can remember half of it, but I get to 2002 and there’s nothing it’s just blank. What advice would you give yourself in 2004? Don’t trust the builder. I had a builder that ran off with £24,000 of my money… What’s your favourite thing about being in The Darkness? The freedom. What I like most is that we have our distinct personalities and we encourage each other to really express that. So there’s no real uniform or blanket rules. It’s very liberating and fun as well. The Darkness have a plethora of great songs, but if you could have written one song by another artist, from any era, which song would it be? Purple Rain by Prince. So profound that song. Apparently there are seven levels of spirituality and purple is the seventh level. So if you reach the sixth level, then you are being rained on by this purple energy. That’s one of the theories of the song. There’s a verse where he’s singing to his bandmates, then to a woman he’s seeing at the time, and then a verse where he’s talking to his deceased father. He’s talking about living up to his example as a musician, and so it’s kind of deeper than people think. He’s basically trying to take his father relationship, his love relationship, and his band relationship, all up to this level where they’re stood in the purple rain, this cleansing level of enlightenment. This isn’t some religious thing, it’s spirituality in the abstract sense of the word. Words: Zan Lawther
Catch the DARKNESS live @ 02 guildhall | december 14
After three consecutive Top 5 albums, 750,000 sales and three sold-out headline tours, you’d have to be living under a rock not to have come across The Overtones as they reboot classic songs, executing their unmistakable doo-wop style through the use of flawless five-part harmonies. Lachie, Darren, Timmy, Mark and Mike are the poster-boys for all things suave, cool and sometimes cheeky as they bring a new and refreshed edge to the classic hits they choose to record and a soulful, funky groove to their original self-penned tunes. Their three previous albums – ‘Good Ol’ Fashioned Love’ (2010), ‘Higher’ (2012) and ‘Saturday Night At The Movies’ (2013) – established their reputation as a group with the unique ability to deliver consistently uplifting music infused with exquisitely crafted vocal harmonies. Their ‘Sweet Soul Music’ album released earlier this year is a tribute to doo-wop and soul pioneers such as The Drifters, Al Green, Marvin Gaye and The Temptations, artists that the chaps grew up listening to and who have influenced them throughout their career and their latest offering, ‘A Good Ol’ Fashioned Christmas’ is no exception to the rule. The Overtones take their audience on a journey through some of our all-time favourite Christmas songs, proving themselves as masters of the current trend for choral singing. Consistently popular with the crowds, they’re often spotted at super fancy events such as the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Concert, BT London Live and British Summer Time and this month their off on a festive jaunt round the country to delight fans with their crooning sounds and on point harmonies at their ‘Christmas Party’ shows. Their previous three headline tours have all sold-out, so we jumped at the chance to have a chat with ex-model and all round nice guy Mike Crawshaw as they got started on preparations for what is sure to be a fantastic show… You’re not far off heading out on tour now, are you excited? We are getting excited now yeah. We’ve been having the end of the preliminary meetings of what we’re going to be doing on tour, the songs we’re gonna be performing, how the tour’s gonna look and everything so things are starting to get quite exciting now and we start rehearsals next week. There’s lots of work to come now, before we head out but we can’t wait. Do you have a live band with you out on the road? We do, yeah. It’s really important to us. You get an energy from a live band playing behind you that not only we feel, but the audience feel as well. And they’re a great band. They’ve played with us ever since we started and the five Overtones always insist that we go out with the same band. It’s really important to us because they know what we like, they know what the audience likes so when we meet up to rehearse we can add energy and flourishes and segues to link the songs. It’s a big creative process and our Musical Director and drummer Ricki Ricardi is incredible at going through how creatively we’re going to make the show bigger and better than the albums they’re emulating. Do you find it a different challenge singing live compared to recording? Oh yeah, of course! With ‘Sweet Soul Music’ it was interesting recording because we went back to the old
southampton MUSIC | december 2015
school way of standing around the mics, all together, singing a song as it is live and as a result of that, an energy was built that I don’t think we’ve achieved in the other albums so we’re really proud of that. Having said that, you sing in a more intimate way in the studio, you’re closer to the mic, the sound is a lot better in your ear, you can really get to the depth of what you’re singing whereas when you’re in a live situation on stage in front of 2,500 people there has to be an energy and a performance behind it as well. And when we’re on tour you have to look after your voice! It’s an hour and 45 minutes show every night and that’s tough cos we always give it everything we’ve got so you have to look after yourself. We’ve built this team around us who are all good mates so with the producer on ‘Sweet Soul Music’ Jools Hinton, we were able to relax, stand round the mics, knowing what we had to do, being able to just completely focus on the harmonies or the leads and the blend. It’s a lovely thing when you’re stood in the studio and you can see all five guys and you’re looking at each other and you’re giving signs to each other ‘crescendo here’, ‘bit softer here’, ‘let’s go all out here’ and I think you can really hear it when you listen to that record. But there is a bit of pressure cos every now and then, we’re only human, in 7 months you’re going to record something and just not be able to get your
Muscle memory is a very strange thing… You get that on tour – after 20 odd dates on tour, you’re very tired and you’ve done the same song every night so it’s important not to go into auto-pilot. Because everyone’s bought their ticket, everyone deserves the same amount of energy so it gets to the point where you’re concentrating on continuing that performance as opposed to just letting it flow out. But then you get to the stage where you’ve done 20 shows and nothing else and you find all these new bits in the songs and it all builds… And that’s one of those really nice things where you even find different melodies to go to and you play around with it. Often we finish a tour and say ‘if only we’d done the tour first’ then the album would have all those little flourishes in but you don’t get the luxury of that normally.
Is it true that you guys were discovered whilst painting a shop? Well, yeah. It’s really hard and time consuming and financially draining trying to make an impact in this industry and because there were five of us all having to work part time jobs or whatever to pay rent and put food on the table, it was getting really difficult to find enough time to rehearse. So after one rehearsal we weren’t going to see each other for 3 weeks, which seemed ridiculous, so Darren and myself had the idea to start a painting and decorating company with the idea that if we can get a job big enough, we can all work on it, make some money and it would free up our schedules to spend time together and rehearse. It was our first job, we were painting an office just off Oxford Street and we got there a bit early so we sat on the steps singing Billy Joel’s ‘The Longest Time’ and this woman stopped and she said ‘I work for Warner Bros and I think you guys might be interesting to them’. A few days later we get a call and we go down to meet the president of Warner Bros, have a bit of a sing to them and they give us a demo deal. We recorded those songs, they went down really well and we got given a five album deal and the rest is history really. It was a bit of a whirlwind in the end.
head around a harmony. But we’re all mates and we all support each other through. None of us have any musical training, we always say we learned our trade on the job and in the early days it might have been a bit more frequent the times when you can’t get your head around it but we’ve been in the professional music business for over 5 years now but we’ve been singing in harmony together for over a decade now so you get to a point where the vast majority of times thing sink in really well. The one thing I find, when I struggle to get harmonies, I just let my body do it. Don’t think about it too much and just sing, cos you know it.
So it was a mixture of lots of hard work, and then fate stepped in… It’s funny isn’t it? We know that we’re lucky boys, we’ve always said it, we won’t deny that, but we’ve always put ourselves in front of that luck. We sang everywhere! Bus stops, on the tube, street corners, we feel like we put Do you have a favourite track to sing live? ourselves in the way of that luck and it was only a matter It changes all the time. I love performing Keep Me Hanging On by Diana Ross and the Supremes. There’s an of time before somebody who could help us walked by. energy to that that gives me shivers every time we do it. Words: Zan Lawther The music in it is insane. For this album Heard it Through the Grapevine is such a cool song but what we’ve done Catch the overtones live to it allows us to all get into it to a point where you’re @ O2 Guildhall Southampton | december 19 just completely lost in the song and I love it.
Tue 1/Wed 2/Thu 3 Dec • £9 Doors 6.30pm Show 7pm
Christmas Carol Concert Southampton Schools Music Association
Sat 05 Dec • £22 EBO From 1/11 £21 Doors & Start 8pm
Dance Yourself Dizzy Modern Jive Christmas Ball Sun 06 Dec • £6 £9 £11 Concessions may apply 11.30am 2pm 6pm
Southampton Gymnastics 47th Annual Gym Gala Wed 09 Dec • Free entry including refreshments and an afternoon tea dance. Start 10am
BBC Radio Solent Big Christmas Cuppa A chinwag, mince
Tue 15 Dec • £22
Sat 20 Feb • £25 Tickets still Valid
Sat 19 Dec • £22.50 £30.50 £39.50 VIP £100 Show 7.30pm
Rescheduled from 10 November
The Kooks* Plus Guests
Sabaton + Alestorm*
Sun 20 Dec • £13.25 £17.95 Doors 2.15pm Show 3pm
Psychic Sally: Call Me Psychic
Daddy McGuinness UK Tour 2015 Mon 14 Dec • £25
The Darkness* Plus These Raven Skies
023 8063 2601
Sat 30 Jan • £26.60 (Tickets are subject to a 50p+ vat donation to Teenage Cancer Trust)
Bloc Party, Drenge, Rat Boy and Bugzy Malone*† Thu 04 Feb • £23.00
Thu 17 Mar • £29.50
Inspiration Southampton–Joy To The World
Thu 10 Dec • £15 £16 £17 Concessions apply Show 7.30pm
Fri 11 Dec • £17.50 £25 £35 15yrs+
Fri 04 Mar • £23.50 Show starts 7.30pm
Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra with
pie and a smile!
Concert In Aid Of Seafarers UK
Mon 29 Feb • £19
Christmas Party with The Overtones*†
The NME Awards Tour 2016 with Austin Texas
The Royal Marines Band Charity Christmas
Plus Special Guests
Sat 19 Mar • £19 16yrs+
Ed Byrne Outside, Looking In Sat 16 Apr • £14.50
Neck Deep and Creeper*† Plus Special Guests
Wed 27 Apr • £20.50 Seated Balcony £25.50
Bellowhead The Farewell Tour† No support
Sat 07 May • £28.50 £32.50
Plus Special Guests
Ten Good Reasons & Greatest Hits
Fri 05 Feb • £18.50 14yrs+ Concessions apply Show 8pm
Sat 21 May • £19.50
Father John Misty†
Katherine Ryan – Kathbum†
Plus Special Guests
Sat 11 Jun • £10 Show 7pm
Sat 13 Feb • £20 VIP Package £50
Bowling For Soup* Plus The Dollyrots + Lacey
Thu 18 Feb • £22.50 £28.50 £35
Dance Fusion 3
*U14’s must be accompanied by
Includes Theatre Levy charge
Lady Sings the Blues Tour
Box office opening hours: Mon-Thurs 9am-6pm Fri 9am-5pm Sat 9am-4pm. A booking fee applies to online & telephone transactions
West Marlands Road Civic Centre, Southampton Hampshire SO14 7LP Doors 7pm unless stated
Christmas Opening times: Close at 4pm Saturday 19 December Re-open 9am Monday 04 Jan (We will be open at doors on show days)
Edition 12 • 2015
SATURDAY 30 JANUARY
O2 GUILDHALL SOUTHAMPTON GIGSANDTOURS.COM | TICKETMASTER.CO.UK AN SJM CONCERTS PRESENTATION
The Magic Gang + Sheikh
The Total Stone Roses
+ Nai Harvest
Sean McGowan + Gecko
Kris Roe of The Ataris
Saints of Sin
Heaven Sent: Party Like it’s 1999
DECEMBER 141 ST MARY STREET, SOUTHAMPTON, SO14 1NS // Twitter: @joinerslive 02381 782021 // email@example.com // access: one step // live room: 14+ // bar: 18+
RICHARD HAWLEY RESCHEDULED DATE - ORIGINAL TICKETS REMAIN VALID
SATURDAY 20 FEBRUARY
02 GUILDHALL SOUTHAMPTON GIGSANDTOURS.COM & VENUE BOX OFFICE
A METROPOLIS MUSIC PRESENTATION BY ARRANGEMENT WITH X-RAY
NEW ALBUM ‘HOLLOW MEADOWS’ OUT NOW “Setting the standard for seduction, once again.” 8/10, NME “Sorry I’ve been away so long,’ are the album’s first words, ‘I needed just a little more time’. Worth every second of the wait.” **** Q Magazine “Meditations on love, age and the smaller things in life, they may be the best he’s written.” ***** Event, Mail on Sunday
“Hollow Meadows finds the crooner at his most affecting and fragile.” **** Observer New Review
Tis the season to be jolly and merry and maybe even slightly sozzled! Here’s our picks of the big events happening all across the city this Yuletide…
Get supersonic at the Shooting Star this Christmas Eve as DJ Hammy sees in the Christmas morn with all your favourite hits from all the eras. FREE ENTRY from 8pm till 1am. The Frog & Frigate are opening early this Christmas Eve so you can pop in from 12pm on your way home. Free homemade mulled wine & mince pies all afternoon, plus live music with Derek on guitar from 7pm. Closing 11pm.
Joiners celebrates local talent this month with a string of performances from some of Southampton’s hottest bands – Three Times Over (6th), Sean McGowan (11th), Dendera The Silver Beatles return to The Brook for a fab four filled (15th), Toupe (16th) and Saints of Sin (19th). Support your Christmas Eve and The Big Town Boppers put on a FREE scene and get involved. ENTRY show at The Old Mill in Holbury. Then shake off those hangovers on Boxing Day as Ben Pearce takes to the Andy C takes you all night long with a massive 5 hour set decks at Junk. at Switch on 5 December.
the silver beatles
Mango kick things off with a Christmas End of Prohibition Party on the 5 December at their new site in Ocean Village - live jazz & and electro-swing style DJ plus all thrown into the speakeasy style. FREE ENTRY Friday 18 December those naughty Lounge Kittens take over the Engine Rooms with their three part harmony twists on your favourite rock and metal classics, this time with a little help from their acoustic rave mash up friends, The Showhawk Duo. Two YouTube sensations in one night and a Christmas disco to boot! £12 in advance or splash out for a table for ten with a bubbly on ice.
the lounge kittens
All three Mango restaurants are open this New Year’s Eve with the Black Kat Boppers plus funny man Mr Owens DJ set and a burlesque dancer popping into the Ocean Village site. Tickets £15 in advance from any Mango and includes a glass of bubbly!
black kat boppers
Talking Heads host the 3rd annual Voice FM / Jurassic Mark Christmas Charity Event on Saturday 19 December. There’s no entry fee, just bring a gift along that they can take to the Children’s Ward at Southampton General on Christmas Morning. Festival experts Blissfields throw their 3rd annual Christmas Bash at The King Charles Pub in Winchester on 19 December. With a lineup including the festival stars Son of Dave, & Too Many T’s and, the hotly tipped shiny new three price girl band, HEY CHARLIE in support, they aim to get the festive season off to a massive start! Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra bring Joy to the World, or at least to the O2 Guildhall on Sunday 20 December.
SOUTHAMPTON MUSIC | DECEMBER 2015
See your favourite (tribute) bands at Talking Heads on NYE as they present you the best of AC/DC, Foo Fighters and Paramore. Tickets only £8 and the bar is open late, late, late. The notorious Frog & Frigate New Year ’s Eve fancy dress bash kicks off at 8pm. Tickets are only £10 and include a single shot of your choice. Disguises mean prizes at this table stomping fiesta with cash prizes for the best fancy dress ensembles!
See in the New Year at The Hobbit with a bit of a buffet and Just round the corner at Junk, Bicep and Karousel a party with indie-rockers Echoic. £7 advance or a tenner and a whole host of mates will be spinning you on the door. senseless until 5am.
Orange Rooms, Buddha Lounge & Club, Tokyo Bar and Tiger Lilly have teamed up to bring you a multi venue fiesta street party with a snowballin’ theme. Bedford place will be transformed into the biggest snow resort this side of the Alps and up to 2000 revellers will party like it’s St Moritz. Or if you fancy things a little less hectic, it’s business as usual at The Cricketers who keep their regulars regular without hiking a door price.
Just across the divide there’s awesome DJ action from Sean “Damaged Goods” Seymour, Black Feather and DJ Further along the valley DJ Hammy returns to the Consigliere at The Alex. Only £4 in advance or £6 on the Shooting Star to party you into 2016. It’s only £5 in advance door. or £10 on the night itself. Oceana’s NYE celebrations have sold out the last two years Keeping in the valley, Lennon’s brings you District, the alt. and it looks like this year will be no different. You can expect rock, metal, pop-punk night with a Comic Con theme for Big Acts, Big Fun and Big Fairground and entry is £25. NYE The Firehouse has renowned classic rock covers band Rufus Stone ring in the New Year at The Brook. For £16 you Recluse playing an extensive set of the songs everyone can be there too – it’s always a cracker of a party. wants to hear; Guns n Roses, Bon Jovi, Led Zep, Skynyrd, Free, Thin Lizzy etc. plus a selection of drinks promos rufus stone (including £2 Jägerbombs) and it is only £5 in advance. Over at Engine Rooms, HTID presents Premonition 2015 featuring a range of artists spanning Happy Hardcore, Freeform, Hardstyle and everything in between.
The Big Town Boppers pop up again, this time at The Travellers Rest in Hythe – tickets only £10. Switch will be ringing in the New Year with none other than tech-master Eats Everything who takes to the decks for the chime of midnight. Tickets are £20 and going fast. Meanwhile over at Joiners, Europe’s infamous DJ Ian D brings one helluva big gay party to help you bust a groove till 3am. Bedford Place is always a good go-to on NYE and this year is no exception… 90 Degrees & Penthouse are keeping things classic this NYE with 4 floors of party featuring all their resident DJ’s, normal price entry and normal price drinks – or buy in advance for £5 and nab yourself a free glass of champagne at midnight.
festive event round up
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Engine Rooms O2 Guildhall The Frog & Frigate The 1865 Platform Tavern Firehouse The Old Farmhouse Popworld Lennons The Rockstone The Shooting Star The Hobbit The Joiners Sadlers The Alexandra O2 Guildhall Box Office Mutant Lab Studio Tattoo Monkey Oxfam Music Asgard The Art House Lucid Beatnik Emporium Ph Music Media Mango Planet Sounds Harbour Lights The Guitar Store Academy of Music & Sound
DECEMBER THURSDAY NIGHT LIVE MUSIC
FREE ENTRY! 7.30PM - MIDNIGHT 3rd CHARLIE BATEMAN & JAMES ‘JIMMY’ HERRITY
10th THE HALF-ARSED HEROES + SAM GREGORY 17th REMEDY SOUNDS & TOM MARTIN DOUBLE BILL 24th CHRISTMAS EVE SPECIAL EARLY OPENING FROM 12PM, FREE MULLED WINE & MINCE PIES, LIVE MUSIC WITH DEREK FROM 7PM. CLOSING 11PM. CHRISTMAS DAY & BOXING DAY - CLOSED
F&F A6 flyer outlines.indd 1
NEW YEAR’S EVE
OG & FRIGATE THE NOTORIOUS FR SH!! 8PM - 2AMOT FANCY DRESS BAINC LUDE A SINGLE SH TO TICKET ONLY - £10.00 TICKET INFO SEE OUR WEBSITE FOR E OIC CH UR YO OF
IZES - CASH PRIZE DISGUISES MEAN PR LES! MB FANCY DRESS ENSE
S FOR THE BEST
CLOSED NEW YEAR’S DAY AL ‘FROG NIGHT ’ RM SAT 2ND JAN - NO - 7.30PM - 1AM WITH DEREK AND DJ
The Brook 466 Portswood Road Southampton SO17 3SD Box Office 1pm - 7pm Mon - Sat 023 8055 5366
Current Original Artists - Now On- Sale...
KARNATAKA ~ SECRET AFFAIR, THE CHORDS UK & THE LAMBRETTAS SLIM CHANCE + CLOCKWORK CAROUSEL ~ ROY AYERS ~ SHOWADDYWADDY SILVER BEATLES XMAS EXTRAVAGANZA ~ RUFUS STONE’S NEW YEAR PARTY VOODOO ROOM ~ JOHN WHEELER (HAYSEED DIXIE) ~ JOHN COGHLAN’S QUO TURIN BRAKES + TOM SPEIGHT ~ BANCO DE GAIA + SOPHIE BARKER (ZERO 7) BROKEN RECORD ~ COLIN BLUNSTONE ~ 9BACH ~ HEATHER PEACE LOVE REVISITED + Lots of new shows on sale in December
+ A Selection of Quality Tributes...
SOTON music Oct 15.indd 1
twitter.com/TheBrookSoton 20/11/2015 20:29
’ N O T P M A H T U O S
k u . o c . o i d a r m voicef Southampton’s own local FM radio station voicefmradio
Opening with stand-out banger ‘The Love Within’ which we can already feel pulsating across fields next summer, ‘Hymns’ gets off to an impressive start. Combining electronic synths, a bouncing beat and uplifting vocals it sets you into a party groove which doesn’t let you settle, particularly when the interestingly placed modulation kicks in.
‘Only He can Heal Me’ incorporates chanting vocals and lyrics that attach themselves to the religious themes expressed by the album title. “The first music I ever heard was hymns at school. I started to think, if I was going to make music that had a spiritual dimension that was sacred to me and to the things that I held important, how would I do it?” says Kele. ‘The Good News’ takes things in a different direction with a bluesy slideguitarriff whereas ‘Into the Earth’ has a jangly indie-funk edge, both songs taking a step away from the electronica featured across the rest of the album.
Bloc Party ‘Hymns’ After 16 years as a band, countless tours and awards and four studio albums, Bloc Party are all at once taking things back to where it all began and pushing forward into a new era with latest album ‘Hymns’. As the band enter their next chapter with bassist Justin Harris and newly recruited drummer Louise Bartle, the concept of faith and devotion flowing through this record succinctly describe founding members’ Kele Okereke and Russell Lissack’s commitment to their craft.
It’s clear throughout that Bloc Party haven’t been afraid to try new things on this LP and for the most part, they’re successful. “It’s still a very live record,” says Russell. “Everything has been played, though it doesn’t necessarily sound like that. We take a lot of influence from electronic music, for example, and then try to bring that into a completely different environment.” Kele is astounded at the results. “What Russell is doing now is completely blowing my mind. He’s using the guitar as an instrument of white noise, as well as a melodic tool. I’m so excited about getting this music in front of people.” And we’d agree, by transposing instruments to make them sound synthetic and challenging themselves to create new soundscapes we reckon this new era of Bloc Party is going to sound massive live.
southampton MUSIC | december 2015
catch bloc party live @ 02 guildhall | january 30
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What’s your favourite tour bus snack? Avocadoreos, as invented by me on the Steel Panther tour-bus - which had a ready supply of both avocados and Oreos. Put one in each hand and alternate bites. I don’t remember much about that evening, but I’m pretty sure it was the greatest thing I’ve ever tasted. If you had the choice to make unicorns real or bring dinosaurs back to life, what would you choose? Zan would kill me if I passed up an opportunity to bring her beloved dinosaurs back into every day existence...dangerous though it may be. Plus- I’m pretty sure that if you slap a bit of Manic Panic on a white horse and strap a dildo to its head...BOOM. Unicorn.
Would you rather have a photographic memory that can only retain disgusting thoughts for life or have a 1 minute memory where you constantly introduce yourself to everyone? What this question actually is - is, “Would I rather be internally tortured all the time OR would I rather everyone else around me was eternally tortured?” As a people-hater I’m going to have to go with the 1 minute memory. With any luck, people will leave me alone and I’ll get a bit of bloody peace and quiet. Would you rather have an extra finger or lose a toe? Extra finger. Without a doubt. I’ll take one now if you’ve got it. I can’t wait until we get to start having cyborg-style upgrades to our bodies. Would you rather kiss a jellyfish or step on a crab? Do I get Kardashian lips if I kiss the jellyfish? I’m assuming I get stung, or is it just that it’s gross to kiss jelly? Honestly, it’s the jellyfish either waythe idea of sand in an ‘awkward to bandage’ toe cut is grossing me out. If you could have any celebrity as a tamagotchi, who would it be? In this scenario, I’ve imagined that my tamagotchi houses their ACTUAL soul- not a likeness of them. That they cease to exist in the material sphere and miraculously disappear and only I am aware of their whereabouts because they’re in my pocket existing only as pixels who want pixel food and every now and again they pixel poo. So naturally I pick Justin Bieber. What would you most like to see David Attenborough do a voiceover for that’s unrelated to nature? I’d like him to follow me around, giving every mundane thing I do a sense of hopeful purpose and gravitas. He can narrate me playing xbox, drinking tea and staring off into space- which is kind of all I do when I’m not on stage. If you weren’t called The Lounge Kittens what would you be called? “Three whiney bitches and a keyboard” It’s one of my favourite comments from a YouTube/Facebook hater. Nailed it.
If you were to have a rap battle, which famous rapper would you chose to rap against? I LOOOOVE rap. If it was about getting schooled by someone awesome and having a bit of a swoon at the same time Childish Gambino or Eminem. If I wanted to win...Vanilla Ice or the guy that does the rap breakdown in Rebecca Black’s ‘Friday’. If you were Captain of a Ship, what would you name it? The Wyld Gallyn, with a figurehead of Bill and Ted in their ‘Be excellent to each other’ hand on heart pose. I might sling that mantra on the main sail too. If you had to have a catchphrase, what would it be? “Go away” or “Don’t touch me”. What would your Pokemon name be? Moodybuff Name your top 5 Steve’s… Steve Martin / Steven Wright (Stand-up comedy legend...not the other one) / Steve Buscemi / My uncle Steve / Dr. Steve Brule What’s your favourite song to perform live? I like ‘em fast and rude. Other than that I have no preference... How many press ups can you do? Loads. Have you SEEN my shoulders? There’s a reason I’m the manly kitten (aside from the huge cock rumours). I’m pretty sure I can bench Jen. If you were a drag queen, what would your name be? What, MORE of a drag queen than I clearly already am? Let’s go for Drag King, seeing as my usual work outfit is essentially drag queen wardrobe. So my Drag King persona would be super sci-fi futuristic; some kind of fetish cyborg with a costume made of latex, metal and LEDs. I’d probably wear those half-stilt things to make me tall and extra imposing, and wear some kind of latex muscle suit so I looked hella ripped. I’d call myself ‘The InTimiadator’. I literally just came up with that. I feel like I should do it now.
catch the lounge kittens @ the engine rooms | december 18
previews Punky protest music straight from the heart
FOR FANS OF: FRANK TURNER / BILLY BRAGG / JOE STRUMMER
DEC 11 | JOINERS
Sean McGowan’s won pretty much every competition going, from supporting Shed Seven at the O2 Academy Bournemouth to being voted ‘Unsigned Act of the Week’ by national radio, and since then has toured every festival circuit you can imagine. Landing somewhere between fierce folk, punky protest and laisez-faire vocals, he’s a natural born performer, weaving through his acoustic melodies with ease.
DEC 15 | O2 GUILDHALL
Indie fizzy Brighton pop-rock
Rising to fame in the 00s with hits ‘Always Where I Need To Be’ and ‘Naïve’, this Brightonian four piece are known for warbling guitar melodies and sublime harmonies that are effortlessly perfect. The band will no doubt entertain with their energetic performance and music that spans almost as many genres as front man Luke Pritchard has skinny jeans. Expect an effectively executed and effervescent show. FOR FANS OF: THE STROKES / KASABIAN / FRANZ FERDINAND
Glam rock meets American 50s pop
There’s no doubt that you’d have heard of Showaddywaddy, the glam rock octet (yes, that’s eight!) from Leicester. Looking back to the 50s for some of their inspiration, Showaddywaddy epitomise a sound that was somehow timeless, managing to get a number 1 single in a time when their glam rock peers were scratching their heads and giving up their left arms for commercial success. FOR FANS OF: ALVIN STARDUST / BAY CITY ROLLERS / SUZI QUATTRO
THE BLACK DAHLIA MURDER
JAN 15 | TALKING HEADS Rock out of this world
DEC 19 | THE BROOK Sweltering face-melting metal
If the band name wasn’t enough to whet your appetite (let’s face it, any band with ‘murder’ as their namesake are going to be darker than the midnight sky), then TBDM are probably not for you. There’s certainly no fluffy bunnies or playing kittens here. What the Michegan based quartet The Black Dahlia Murder bring instead is their raging guitar riffs and screeching vocals that any self-respecting metal head would envy. FOR FANS OF: THY ART IS MURDER / THE ACACIA STRAIN
Hawkwind are somewhat of a law unto themselves. Embracing yet simultanesouly shaking off conventions, they are able to take on synthesizers with heavy and strident guitar sounds to create an end product that is entirely their own. They also embody mythical and fantasy popular culture from the 70s, taking on elements of sci-fi, it’s almost like their music could jump out the speakers and tell you a story. FOR FANS OF: YES / WISHBONE ASH / JETHRO TULL
SOUTHAMPTON MUSIC | DECEMBER 2015
JAN 19 | THE 1865
previews JOHN OTWAY & THE BIG BAND
JAN 23 | TALKING HEADS
Punk (non) perfection
Gaining a cult following through decades of non-stop shows, Otway brings together some of the best elements of punk – a devil may care attitude, a self-deprecating sense of humour and a delightfully amateur approach (despite having 5 records signed to prestigious label Polydor). Although his live shows are undoubtedly not as frenzied or reckless as when he first started out, this true punk rocker is well worth a watch. FOR FANS OF: THE STRANGLERS / EDDIE & THE HOT RODS
Playing Infernal Love in full
With keen pop sensibilities, a skewed sense of humour and a willingness to draw inspiration from diverse sources (notably punk rock) , Therapy? came to attention in the early 1990s rise of alternative rock, but have endured for more than twenty (yes, twenty) years since. Back on the road again to celebrate the anniversary of their classic Infernal Love album you can expect the album in full plus a mixture of hits old and new. FOR FANS OF: UMM….THERAPY? / THE WILDHEARTS / TERRORVISION
FEB 20 | ENGINE ROOMS Modern folk-pop
Sixteen years of touring across continents have sealed Turin Brakes’ reputation as a fearsome live act, able to hold any size crowd with the sheer chutzpah of their no-hidden-tricks raw and direct onstage presence. The duo originally hailing from London, have a sound that’s distinctly British, wobbling acoustic guitar with Lightening Seeds-esque lyrics that scream of seasides, sunshine and showers.
FEB 24 | THE BROOK FOR FANS OF: THE LIGHTNING SEEDS / DOVES / STARSAILOR Colourful pop melodies with screeching guitar THE WONDERSTUFF Originally formed in the 1980s, The Wonderstuff are somewhat of a household name when it comes to British alternative rock. They’ve had almost as many line-ups as we’ve had hot dinners, which has meant that their sound has somewhat changed over the years, but what is certain is that the sneer and air of self-confidence that has seemed to follow lead singer Miles Hunt from pillar to post is still there in spades.
MAR 4| ENGINE ROOMS No barrier here, just unashamedly good British rock
FOR FANS OF: LEVELLERS / SHED SEVEN / THE BLUETONES
MAR 26 | ENGINE ROOMS
Achieving commercial success in the mid 90s, Reef are still a big name in British rock music and that’s no surprise. With a back catalogue that boasts 8 top 10 UK singles, a raw sound that resonates more with grunge than the Brit-pop fashion of the period, and a never ending stream of live shows, it seems that everywhere you turn, Reef are there. And this popularity is no different today. After a hiatus of nearly 7 years, they’re back and we’re glad. FOR FANS OF: OCEAN COLOUR SCENE / FEEDER / SUNSET SONS
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Armed with a guitar, a soulful voice and an abundance of emotion, Vicki’s music has often been described as “haunting and heartfelt”. Vicki has been writing and gigging her own material for 5 years. She’s released two EP’s which have both received radio airplay from BBC Introducing as well as local airplay and they’ve both charted in the iTunes singer/songwriter charts. Vicki has spent a long time gigging the local circuit so you may have already seen her before as she’s taken the time to build up a loyal following as well as playing gigs and various festivals/events/stages up in London and further afield. She has supported artists such as Billy Bragg, Kyla La Grange, Josh Record, Mark Morriss, Jake Isaac and most recently The Japanese House. Vicki is currently in the process of recording her 3rd EP, set for release in 2016 so we caught up with her recently to find out a little bit more…
ones to watch
If you could tour with anyone in the world, who would it be? I would love to tour with Ben Howard! If not, I wonder if Adele would like to take me on tour with her..? If she’s reading this then I can make myself available. If not, Fleetwood Mac will be just fine. Just so I can fangirl over Stevie Nicks for the entirety!
What’s the best gig you’ve ever been to? Without a doubt, Radiohead in Manchester. Thom Yorke is 100% the best and most fascinating front man I’ve ever seen live. They had the crowd totally captivated from start to finish. And your favourite gig you’ve played so far? I think the best gig I’ve played is being added to the bill to support Billy Bragg at The Joiners. I have a lot of love and appreciation for The Joiners and everyone who works there, as they have shown a lot of belief in me and encourage me all the time. I was the opening act and I played to a crowd who probably would never have heard my music otherwise. To silence a room like that and gain their respect was huge.
What do you think are the biggest challenges being a solo musician? I think the biggest challenges are the obvious one of being on stage What made you first decide to pick up an instrument? on your own and having nothing to hide behind. It’s a very lonely Music was always around me growing up, as my Dad is a massive place up there but one I embrace as it pushes me to my best. I also music lover. I grew up in the 90s and Oasis was the first band I really think it’s a challenge to remain true to yourself, especially in a world got in to. I wanted to learn the chords to the entire ‘(Whats The that is so massively focused towards social media. It is easy to fall Story’) Morning Glory’ album as I thought that would be pretty cool! into a trap of losing why you really want to make music and getting I was a very shy child though, so I’d only play when nobody was too caught up in the ‘likes’ and the ‘follows’. I want to make music listening. Ha! because I love what music can do to you when it really moves you. How would you describe your music in three words? Haunting, soulful, real Who are your biggest influences? I can’t really say that anyone specifically influences me when I’m writing music. Often, people tell me at gigs that they can hear certain singers/artists in my music, so subconsciously it is probably there. My real influences are my family. I was brought up to never be afraid to show my emotions and I certainly wear my heart on my sleeve. I guess that comes across in my music. When my grandparents tell me stories, I often watch their eyes well up and if I can emulate that sort of emotion when I’m telling a story through my music, I think that’s a beautiful thing. If you push me for names though, Amy Winehouse was an absolute lyrical genius and someone I hugely admire and vocally, Karima Francis absolutely blows me away every time I see/hear her.
What’s coming up in 2016? I am currently working on new music/a new EP, which will be released at some point next year. I am also developing a bigger sound which I’m really excited about and I am working with a producer who is really bringing out the best of me. Watch this space.
What’s been your biggest achievement so far? Being picked up by BBC Introducing was a wonderful feeling. Having people listen to my music and telling me that it moved them is an incredibly humbling thing, but I would say my biggest achievement is constantly plugging away at this craft. It’s not all fun. As an unsigned artist, you hear ‘no’ far more than you hear ‘yes’, but it’s about taking that ‘yes’ and running with it. I’ve come to learn that patience is the key. I have played the gigs where nobody turns up (literally just to my girlfriend and a dog!) but it has made me thicker skinned and more appreciative of opportunities. I feel the whole thing is a gradual achievement.
SOUTHAMPTON MUSIC | december 2015
Published on Nov 25, 2015
Your one stop guide to the best music in the city! This month we hook up with reformed rock legends the Darkness to talk tours, new members...