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THE FESTIVAL ISSUE

JULY 2019

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ISSUE #5 JULY 2019

MORE LIVE LIVE MORE It’s summer and there’s only one thing on the top of our list (as we’re sure there are with many others’ lists!): FESTIVAL SEASON. We’re discussing Glastonbury, one of the most well-known festivals in the world, returning after a fallow year. We’re also talking about the fresh and new festivals to look out for, all the way until 2020. If you’re not one to participate in a traditional camping festival, there are many non-camping multi-day festivals or one-day festivals; and we’re providing you with an extensive list to choose from. Are you planning ahead as early as we are? Let us know which festivals you’re most excited about! The other things on our list are exciting artist discoveries, whether they’re new or experienced in the industry. We want to get to know anyone that has a passion for music as much as we do, and we make it our aim to share their that passion with our audience.

Eethan Bello Editor-in-Chief, Magazine Editor, Graphic Designer


The MNGR is a student-led multimedia and events platform which aims to support up and coming fresh acts. All students involved are members of the University of West London’s Student Union. Most are studying in the London College of Music and London School of Film, Media, and Design.

Crush Live IG / @crushliveuk

WEBSITE themngrmag.com

Cross The Line crossthelinemusic.com

Facebook, Instagram, Twitter @themngrmag

Best of Enemies IG / @bestofenemiesuk

Spotify, YouTube @themngr

Chalk City IG / @whereischalkcity Fiona Ross fionaross.co.uk Luis IG / @ffmluis Beat-Herder beatherder.co.uk Uni Sound Music Festival unisoundmusicfestival.com Juan Dhas juandhas.com

We have editorial, events, digital marketing, graphic design, and photography positions available. Contact mngr.president@gmail.com for more information.


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PHOTO BY CHRISTOPHER LAUDER

FESTIVAL PG. 07

BEAT-HERDER FESTIVAL

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GLASTONBURY FESTIVAL

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NEW FESTIVALS | 2019-2020

COVER PHOTO BY JO DEXTER


CRUSH LIVE PRESENTS

PG. 06 EP REVIEW / MIDNIGHT BLUE BY LUIS

PG. 15 ALBUM REVIEW / CATHARSIS BY JUAN DHAS

PG. 17 POWER PLAYLIST

PG. 03 INTERVIEW

FIONA ROSS INTRODUCES HER NEW ALBUM: FIERCE AND NON-COMPLIANT

JULY 2019

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Crush Live is back with another gig next month after a great turnout with their most recent hip-hop and rap showcase. The upcoming gig will feature a multi-genre lineup ranging from alternative, rock, and electronic-pop. The Crush Live collective aims to promote upcoming artists, bands, DJ’s, and musicians by booking them gigs and showcases in the London music scene. Previous gigs hosted by Crush Live have included UWL students and alumni Jenny Willett, Tazrian Haq, and Burnt Tongues. This upcoming August, Cross The Line will embark on their EU/UK Tour in support of their debut album, Of Luck And Reverence. The trio Felix Breßmer, Timo Annormalo, and Jonas Grob are travelling from Germany and playing one date in the Netherlands and six dates in the UK. Their London date is set on 8 August 2019 at Roadtrip and the Workshop, presented by Crush Live. They will be supported by Best of Enemies and Chalk City.

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WRITTEN BY EETHAN BELLO PHOTO BY PHILIP J. SCHWARZ

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Chalk City are Sam Threadgold, Kēra Stewart, and Jack Ford. The band formed just this year and their debut single ‘(I Don’t Even) Need Your Love’ was released this past 21 June, which received support from BBC Music Introducing. ‘IDENYL’ is a catchy electronicpop tune that’s fit for a summer tune.

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Supporting band Best of Enemies are London locals based in Croydon. The band consists of Sam Christmas, Ben Sapsford, Christian Kally-Gillmore, and Liam Washford Bent. They have previously received support from Kerrang! Radio and BBC Music Introducing in 2016, and they performed at Camden Rocks Festival 2019 this past June. Their most recent EP A Fear That Comes Around was released this April under Undead Collective Records. The four-track EP showcases a more honedin sound for Best of Enemies, showing growth and progression from their previous releases.

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ross The Line’s Of Luck And Reverence are comprised of nine songs with memorable melodies, and all of the tracks range between three to four and a half minutes long. The album mixes genres of alternative, acoustic rock, pop, and folk; their songs delving into the different themes of love, friendship, and nostalgia. Every track has a different energy that relates to their respective lyrics.

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FIONA ROSS INTRODUCES HER NEW ALBUM: FIERCE AND NON-COMPLIANT

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iona Ross lives in London, she is a songwriter, composer, vocalist, pianist, producer and journalist. She has recently released her new album, Fierce and Non-Compliant. The cover artwork shows a younger version of Fiona looking feisty and confident. With this title and that cover artwork, you expect Fiona Ross to be somewhat formidable and a bit frightening, so it is quite a nice surprise to meet the real Fiona Ross who is very polite, extremely gentle and quite delicate-looking. Her music, however, is super powerful and that’s when the album title starts to make sense! Here she is, in conversation with me about her new album.


SO FIONA, YOU SIT UNDER THE HEADING OF JAZZ… CAN YOU EXPLAIN THAT? Yes, I sit under the heading of jazz and I think it’s a lovely heading. I didn’t set out to be a Jazz anything but I enjoy the freedom and the flexibility you have within that and if you have to put a label on something then I’m quite happy to sit under the under the label of jazz!

DID YOU STUDY JAZZ PIANO? No I didn’t actually study jazz piano as such. I studied classical music, classical vocals and I had a musical theatre voice training. I am self-taught in jazz piano. SO THIS NEW ALBUM…. Yes, it’s called Fierce and NonCompliant and it came out 3-4 weeks ago, so hot off the press! It’s an eclectic group of different songs all under the heading of jazz, some kind of ballads, some Latin jazz… and I’ve got some amazing guest artists on it. But about the title track, yes, this song really describes what I mean by fierce and non-compliant. When writing the lyrics, I used examples of what the press said about me because I wouldn’t describe myself as fierce… but non-compliant yes I am probably! The front cover to the album is me when I was a child and I’ve got ginger hair like a lion’s mane and my mum would make me pose and look sassy for the camera…. so the front cover is me looking all sassy at the age of six or seven I think.

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THERE IS A FANTASTIC TRACK ON THIS ALBUM CALLED ‘DOING MY THING’, WHAT INSPIRED IT? Well, yes I think my way of life is just giving things a go, you know … and if you want to do something just go for it! I know quite a few people that reach a certain stage and they wish they’d done things… As a musician I get that loads… ‘I wish I’d learnt to play the piano’, ‘I wish I’d done this and that’ and I say, ‘Just do it!’ There’s no harm in trying so I’m very much for not being frightened of things… I’m just giving it a go and the worst thing that might happen is if someone says no or it doesn’t work out… but what matters is that you tried. Also what I love about people is when they are genuine and when they’re real

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WHEN DID YOU START WRITING SONGS? I started performing actually when I was very young and had my first kind of professional job when I was about 2 because I trained in dance, drama and music and I had one of these crazy stage mums who, the minute I could walk, was putting me through auditions and things like this. Then I started training on the piano when I was 6 years old. I was classically trained so a lot of my upbringing for my musical influences were my mum’s. She was into opera so she was very much into classical music and my dad was into old school jazz and the crooners. He loved Bing Crosby, Frank Sinatra. I was training in musical theatre so I had those influences and I think when I was about 12 or 13 I started writing really depressing ballads on the piano. You know when you’re a teenager and your concern is ‘who is me?’... I first started biting that type of thing, but I didn’t really do anything with it and my career kind of changed direction and I did some writing for other people. I did some composing, film scores and theatre work so I spent a long time writing for other people. It’s only in the past 4 years that I decided to do this as an artist in my own right and started writing my own material. I have all these crazy things going on in my head and I want to get them out!

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INTERVIEW BY FABRIZIO VINCENTE

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and in some ways that is almost the sexiest thing ever when someone is just content with who they are, confident. So this song ‘Doing My Thing’ in the first verse is about me just going to do my thing and just trying the best out… the best I can do… and then the second verse is about how I feel and natural smiles you’re smiling as you’re happy… you know, from a real place not pretending… so yes, doing my thing is very inspiring. WHAT ABOUT ‘FOR MY DAD’… THIS IS AN EMOTIONAL TRACK ISN’T IT? Yes, it has only recently come out so I performed this song twice only and both times people in the audience have cried. It’s difficult for me to talk about it though because my dad died when I was younger and it’s one of those things that I just didn’t really talk about, it was there you know but I didn’t really talk about the emotions… Then I decided for some reason to write a song for my dad I think because my career has really taken off recently and it was one of those I wish he were here to come and see … To see that I’m finally doing what he wanted me to do! It is a very personal song and it’s just piano, vocal and trumpet so it’s quite a naked song and it is very hard to sing. Both times I performed it I’ve had people in the audience who just came up to me and were in tears! And it’s really hard because you can’t say ‘yes, I’m glad I made you cry’ I don’t what to say to that… but I do like this song and I’m very pleased with the chords, they are beautiful… I don’t quite know how I came up with them! We will actually do a video of this song featuring one of my guests on the album, Adam, who is also a dancer. I’m very excited about that! WHAT KIND OF LIVE WORK DO YOU DO? Of course, I love the performance

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aspect of it so once the album is out, it’s all about gigging. I’ve been quite fortunate… This article came out and it had the ten best jazz clubs in London and I had a look and I’ve actually played at quite a few of them: the 606, Pizza Express, Zeidel, the Bull’s Head… my album launch was at the Bull’s Head in Barnes and Toulouse-Lautrec… This year until Christmas it’s pretty much UK based and then I’m hoping to do some European dates next year and potentially the States. I am working on a plan at the moment … One of my guests on my album is an amazing Grammynominated bassist called Snow Owl and he lives in Vienna so we’re looking at possibly maybe doing a gig over there and in Paris. I work as a journalist as well and I’ve been incredibly fortunate to kind of meet so many wonderful people and it is inspiring. I have a series for jazz in Europe, the magazine, which is about women in jazz, about role models, a look at inspiring women… from emerging artist to established artists. So I met Maxine Gordon (Dexter Gordon’s wife) she has recently written an amazing book about him. I interviewed her and… this is an example of me being fierce… I asked her to write the sleeve notes for my album and she said yes!


EP REVIEW / WRITTEN BY TOM J. WALKER AND JOANA PEREIRA CARVALHO

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he latest EP release by the Portuguese singer-songwriter Luís goes by Midnight Blue. Consisting of two tracks, Luís blends acoustic and electronic elements together to create a distinctive sonic landscape for the listener to enjoy. ‘Living for You’ begins as a chilled out acoustic ballad, perhaps evocative of Ed Sheeran, before being complemented by lo-fi electronic beats and synths for an interesting mix. Standing out with his vocals accompanied by a guitar on the intro, the synths kick in halfway through. ‘Bright Blue’ sees a shift towards a more electronic style from the beginning, with dreamy pads, beats, and sound effects complimenting Luís’ spacy vocals for a more experimental feel. In a more nostalgic feeling, the chorus is characterised by distinct sound effects out of the usual. Both tracks were made for chilled out, easy listening while still maintaining the ability to capture the listener’s attention. The EP from this talented and upcoming Portuguese artist is one not to be missed.


WRITTEN BY ANA BULNES CASTILLO

Beat-Herder continues to exist as it did back when it started as a free DIY party in 1998: uncompromising, unwavering and distinguished by an overwhelming sense of community.

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eat-Herder Festival is a unique platform towards the new generation of music, providing many opportunities for those who don’t fall under a one-genre category. The festival takes place in Lancashire’s Ribble Valley, creating a massive party with technicolour schemes and mystical stages. The festival provides a wide range of entertainment, from live acts, DJ’s, comedians, to other surprises. The first edition of the festival was in 2006 when there were only five stages maximum, and now the festival has extended into 20+ stages. Every edition of the festival since its inception has sold out, and this year isn’t any different. Herd ‘em up! Their headliners include Rudimental, Groove Armada, Basement Jaxx, and Sister Sledge. Sunday night’s final performance will be by Sister Sledge, true powerhouse icons who will be sure to give the festival a closing set that it deserves. Other notable acts

include Red Snapper, Hot 8 Brass Band, Hannah Wants, Skream, Sonny Fodera and many more. Beat-Herder Festival is an umbrella for the electronic music spectrum, supporting genres like electronic, house, techno, grime and many more. The festival has been known for being a creative space and has been supporting hand made, DIY concepts since it began. Most of the stuff that you’ll see at BeatHerder will be unique to the festival, from hand-painted signs and flags, restoring old cars, to homemade hymn books. The festival contains unique characters giving the place a great atmosphere, with a wide range of options to do besides watching music performances. Alongside your expected food trucks, bars, stalls are a chance to explore underground tunnels, get inked in the tattoo parlour, take a dip in the hidden swimming pool, sit by the the huge fire pit, or even enjoy some retro entertainment with the site’s very own working men’s club. This festival is definitely one of the best festivals to experiment with different music styles. No other festival brings up the concept that the Beat-Herder Festival gives. Their distinguished stages have been built with impeccable attention to every detail, created by a team that handcrafts every stage to a particular feeling that makes you want to go back.


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ISSUE #5 JULY 2019

THE LARGEST GREENFIELD MUSIC AND PERFORMING ARTS FESTIVAL IN THE WORLD.

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he iconic Glastonbury Festival returns after a fallow year with tremendous experiences for everyone to share. The festival is located on the 900 acre Vale of Avalon field, dating back many hundreds of years of symbolism, mythology and religious traditions. From revamped stages, surprise performances, inspirational speeches, the first plastic-ban in festivals, and an overall better economical outcome thanks to the sunshine! Glastonbury’s return to the festival scene this last week of June fulfilled an ever-so vibrant and diverse lineup, creating history when Stormzy was booked on the Pyramid Stage, being the first black British solo artist and the second youngest ever headliner on the main stage.

WRITTEN BY JOANA PEREIRA CARVALHO AND EETHAN BELLO PHOTOS [IN ORDER] BY LEE ROBERTS, PAUL BRYAN, ANDY WHITE, MILLIE WIGINGTON, ADEM HOOG, SOPHIE CORNISH, AND RUBY KEIGHLEY


The renowned Pyramid Stage presented an energetic and memorable mixture of performances throughout the weekend. This is the main stage where you can always find your top-charting artists of the past and the present, and they delivered genres ranging between pop, rock, indie, and rap. Though more artists under the urban genre umbrella would have shown the diversity in today’s UK music scene, Friday night’s headliner Stormzy was able to deliver a spectacle for the underrepresented genre in the main stage. Stormzy’s rise to fame has been quick, but it’s been done with humbleness and a clear intent to be the voice for the people. Though his performance was heavily political, he received praises from other mainstream artists such as Adele and Ed Sheeran about his success. Saturday night’s headliner The Killers are finally back at Glastonbury, it’s been over a decade since their underwhelming debut performance due to sound restrictions. However, in this year’s performance, frontman Brandon Flowers made sure that all of the boxes were ticked

in order to redeem The Killers from their first performance. The band have grown and they’ve performed hundreds of different shows since that performance, and it showed. The performing veterans are aware of the opportunities that festivals like Glastonbury have, and they made sure to take advantage of that. Flowers was like a livewire, ensuring that the crowd was interacting throughout the set, singing along to every song, and bringing out surprise guests Johnny Marr and The Pet Shop Boys. Closing the Pyramid Stage on Sunday night is The Cure, bringing no-frills to the stage, just their talent that mesmerised the crowd. This would be the fourth time that The Cure has headlined Glastonbury, but over 24 years since their last. With a long list of experiences under their belt, it’s no surprise at how their minimal approach won over the crowd and intoxicated the atmosphere. They played classic after classic, with frontman Robert Smith tearing up at the end of their set. Other notable performances from Pyramid Stage are from Vampire Weekend, Kylie, Janet Jackson, George Ezra, Hozier, and Bastille.


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The Other Stage provided the same diversity as Pyramid Stage, with a majority of the acts ranging between indiepop, indie-rock, alternative, and pop, but with some hiphop and electronic fusion. This stage brought together a weekend packed with today’s chart-toppers, from Christine and the Queens, Billie Eilish, Lewis Capaldi, Bring Me The Horizon, Two Door Cinema Club, Sigrid, and more. The Chemical Brothers’ set provided a tribute to the Prodigy’s Keith Flint, whose stage slot they took over since Flint’s recent death. The West Holts Stage offered an eclectic lineup full of soul, jazz, electronica and world music to name a few. Janelle Monáe closed the stage on Sunday night, showing off her natural rockstar talent. Monáe, who came out as queer last year, shouted about embracing your sexuality, while Lizzo’s set shouted about self-love and self-confidence. The John Peel Stage provided a mixed bag of established artists such as Sam Fender, Mahalia, Rosalia and Gerry Cinnamon and fiery artists that are the ones to keep an eye on, such as Pale Waves, Swimming Girls, and Goat Girl. During their set, Friendly Fires delighted the audience with some sounds from their new album, Inflorescent, which is coming out this August 16th. Hot Chip, Cat Power and Rex Orange County captivated the fans at The Park Stage. Back with music and art, the Unfairground was located at Glastonbury South East Corner.

Left Field Stage was back with some polemic debates, highlighting topics such as as LGBTQ+, racism, and Brexit.

minutes to an hour during the day and from 20:00 - 23:00 in the evening — to any artists and musicians in the area.

On the other side, Block9 received a stage uplift with nearly double the size as the previous editions; it’s been split off in adjacent fields, east and west. With 3D surroundings, IICON stage presented a pseudo-religious monument with emerging digital realities. This area, in particular, became livelier late at night. This edition presented, once more, a women-only venue with female and non-binary acts. Alongside Block9 is Shangri-La, both areas were providing the best disco sounds, alternative performances, and dance music. The dance stage Glade presented techno and house acts such as John Digweed, Fatboy Slim, Carl Cox, Seth Troxler and Idris Elba (who also performed with Stefflon Don at John Peel Stage). The Silver Hayes area hosted stages such as WOW, Pussy Parlure, and BBC Music Introducing. We saw some incredible performances from Headie One, SNØW B2B Tash LC, Four Tet, Camelphat, Kara Marni and Easy Life, just to name a few.

Arcadia’s Pangea Stage was the innovation on this festival’s edition, presenting full 360-degree lighting and spitfire show around the area. Saying goodbye to the festival is The Beat Hotel Stage which saw sets by Jon Hopkins and Seth Troxler. The promoters mentioned that something new and fresh will take place next year instead.

At the Green Fields area, the dedicated slots reserved for BIMM students and alumni at the Croissant Neuf Bandstand were receiving a well-deserved crowd. Eleven acts from the university performed to the crowd in this stage. Alongside this gold mine opportunity are two open mic sessions every day — ranging from 30

The combination of the plastic-ban and good sunshine showed a great ending to the festival. Organiser Emily Eavis posted on her Instagram that 99.3% of all tents were taken home by the festival-goers. Environmentalist and Television Presenter David Attenborough made a special appearance on the last day at the Pyramid Stage, praising the festival for going plastic-free. This decision has led to 1 million plastic cups and bottles not being used at the festival; not only reducing their damaging impact on the field but also speeding up the cleaning process for the festival.

Next year will bring the 50th anniversary of Glastonbury, and it’s sure going to be bigger than this years!


NEW

FESTIVALS

CURATED BY JOANA PEREIRA CARVALHO

FIELDS OF GOLD

ASHTON CRICKET CLUB (ASHTON-UNDERLYNE) 7TH SEP.

NAKED CITY

Naked City has a collection of new artists in their lineup, with Ezra Collective, Kamal Williams and Tom Ravenscroft amongst the many artists performing. This one-day festival will take place across three stages in a converted golf course, providing a blend of genres including house, jazz, disco and drum and bass.

GUNNERSBURY PARK (WEST LONDON) 6TH — 8TH SEP.

Gunnersville Festival is a new Festival Republic concert series beginning this September. The festival headliners include Doves, The Specials, and You Me at Six. You Me at Six are making a special headline show, playing an exclusive set compiled of each of their singles by year. Sunday boasts the strongest lineup, featuring Deaf Havana, Jimmy Eat World, Sundara Karma, The Maine, As It Is, and Milk Teeth. Gunnersville Festival promises to “blur the line between festivals and concerts”.

GUNNERSVILLE

BECKENHAM PLACE PARK (SE LONDON) 27TH JUL.

Maiden Voyage is an intimate one-day, one-stage festival hosted by The Jazz Cafe. The festival includes genres of jazz, hip-hop, afrobeat, and funk. Their full lineup includes 10 distinct acts, Gilles Peterson, Bradley Zero, and Madlib (DJ Set) are headlining the festival. Other acts include Awesome Tapes from Africa, Bradley Zero, Charlotte Dos Santos, Illa J, Nabihah Iqbal (DJ Set), Roy Ayers, Steam Down, and Zakia.

Fields of Gold Festival will be celebrating the most loved music with tribute bands, such as Oasis, The Courteneers, The Arctic Monkeys and Kasabian to name a few, this festival will be hosted by DJ Clint Boon. A real throwback with the UK’s best tribute bands. SHOREDITCH (EAST LONDON) 19TH OCT.

Uni Sound Music Festival features performances from university students all over the country. It will take place in multiple venues within Shoreditch. The festival aims to showcase independent and diverse talent; their purpose is to bridge new connections and collaborations around the industry. The lineup is still yet to be announced, but ticket sales begin on 15th July for £3.

UNI SOUND MUSIC

MAIDEN VOYAGE

THREE MILLS ISLAND (EAST LONDON) 25TH AUG.


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LINCOLNSHIRE SHOWGROUND (LINCOLNSHIRE) 29TH — 31ST MAY ‘20

THE ENDS

JUNE ‘20

Cross The Tracks Festival had their first edition on 9 June 2019. This new festival focuses on music and food. Inviting a mixture of legendary and upcoming artists representing soul, jazz, and funk. They featured the best 40 food stalls around the city and craft beer brewers. Panels, workshops, a record fair and an independent creative market were also onsite. Another festival not to miss!

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The Ends Festival had their first edition in the first week of June 2019. This brand new festival in Croydon delivered a mix of hip-hop, grime, afrobeat & reggaeton; featuring internationals such as J Balvin, Damien Marley, WizKid, Nas and some UK talent such as Nadia Rose, Ghetts, IAMDDB and Che Lingo. Stay updated with The Ends Festival and their second year through their website.

Created by two individuals who met each other in Workington, sharing a passion for live music and acting as independent promoters, Call Of The Wild Festival was born. This first run of the three-day, threestage festival will have more than 50 bands performing, with the second year of the festival already being BROCKWELL PARK (SOUTH LONDON) planned for 2021.

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Re-Textured Festival aims to connect electronic music, lighting and architecture, Danny Clancy, part of the Krankbrother duo, wanted to focus closely on the visual artists as much as the musical ones. Putting a real effort to find unusual venues, the promoters wanted industrial and brutalist architecture imported from the 50/60’s. Nina Kraviz, Shackleton and Object Blue were amongst the electronic lineup, while Akiko Nakayama will do a live painting combined with ambient music on this LLOYD PARK first and last edition of (SOUTH LONDON) MAY/JUNE ‘20 the festival.

CROSS THE TRACKS

RE-TEXTURED

CALL OF THE WILD

VARIOUS VENUES ACROSS LONDON MARCH ‘20

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ALBUM REVIEW /

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uan Dhas is a young jazz guitarist from Colombia. Born in Dubai to a Colombian mother and Indian father, he began playing guitar at the age of 12. He attended Berklee College of Music, where he was accepted on a scholarship in 2011, and graduated at the age of 20 in 2014. His debut album Embracing Clarity was released just before his graduation and was described as very impressive, particularly in view of the musical maturity that was displayed. Juan returned to Bogotá in 2016 and still lives there, teaching at EMMAT where he is the coordinator of the Guitar Department, and performing regularly with local Colombian musicians. His second album Catharsis, was inspired by a difficult time of his life when he was in Maryland, US, and after going through a less creative 18-month patch, he started composing again and ideas “seemed to flow very naturally”, he says and “as a result the process of writing this album became very cathartic, hence the title”. At that point, he returned to Colombia and became aware that he had put together a body of work that he was very happy with. This album was recorded at Audiovision Studios in Bogotá, Colombia and features 9 tracks: 1. Reverie, 2. Deeper Spirit, 3. Alma, 4. Showers over a Silent Lake, 5. If Only I Could, 6. Story of Night, 7. Conscience, 8. Beacons, 9. Sleep. Ranging from 2’48 to 10 minute-long compositions, the tracks are more deliberately composed by comparison to his previous album, containing more single melodic lines and more adventurous harmonies. Juan describes his inspiration as coming from composers such as Debussy, Ravel, and of course jazz. When I listen to his music, I hear a sound that is reminiscent of the ECM Jazz label, creating space, an airy atmosphere and crisp, crystal-clear production. In order to achieve this of course one needs not

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only a great recording studio and great engineer but also a set of extremely creative and very accomplished players. Accompanying and interacting with Juan on guitar, Kike Harker is on double bass and Ramón Berrocal on drums, with the exception of the track ‘Story of Night’ featuring Jacobo Álvarez on drums. The album is produced by Juan Dhas and co-produced by Anthony Muthurajah. This guitar trio format does remind me of the Gateway Trio, and as Juan says himself: “The ECM stuff is always a treat!” Phew, I was relieved that he didn’t mind my comparison of his playing and sound to the late John Abercrombie’s (my favourite jazz guitarist). The reminiscence that Juan’s music brings me is no doubt due to a similar approach to music that John Abercrombie had, one where creativity and exploration of time and sound are more important than showing off, or prioritising the display of technique over feel, speed over fluidity. Don’t take me wrong, there are no apologies to be made, this band has the technical chops but what you hear first is the beauty of the music, the adventurous melodies, cleverly going into new modes and taking unexpected turns, changing feels, dynamics, while the written themes and improvisation ebb and flow into one another, creating a soundscape that brings joy.


WRITTEN BY FABRIZIO VINCENTE PHOTO BY EDGAR TRUJILLO ARTWORK BY MIHIR RANGANATHAN


er w o p

st li ay

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angel - beabadoobee

bones - georgia meek

bury a friend - billie eilish

in my head - lauren sanderson juice - lizzo

ooh la la la - alyssah masochistic - blithe noises - pale waves

remember my name - mitski sour - venus

listen on our spotify @themngr


1 J u ly Believe the Hype 01, Introduction 2 2 J u ly Grey Area: Luís [Pt. 2] 1 August Believe the Hype 02, ‘Time Crawler’ 1 September Believe the Hype 03, Loud Women Fest 19 September Fresher’s Networking Event Showcase Gig ft. Ellie Jayne, Luis, Nicole Clarke, and Opal Skies October Issue #6 [Print]


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