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P.21 Africa Oyé

P.30 Emily Tilzey – Today I Realised Something (2014)

P.33 MMU graduates – Natalie Dawson

June 2014

I N D E P E N D E N T

C U LT U R A L

J O U R N A L I S M

Issue 15, June 2014 © Radge Media Ltd. Get in touch: E: hiya@theskinny.co.uk T: 0161 833 3124 P: The Skinny, Second Floor, Swan Buildings, 20 Swan Street, Manchester, M4 5JW The Skinny is distributing 24,680 copies across Liverpool and Manchester, a wide range of advertising packages and affordable ways to promote your business are available. Get in touch to find out more.

E: sales@theskinny.co.uk All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced in whole or in part without the explicit permission of the publisher. The views and opinions expressed within this publication do not necessarily represent the views or opinions of the printer or the publisher.

Printed by Mortons Print Limited, Horncastle ABC verified Jul – Dec 2013: 24,680

Printed on 100% recycled paper

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Contents

Editorial Northwest Editor Film & Deputy Editor Events Editor Music Editor Art Editor Clubs Editor Deviance Editor Fashion Editor Food Editor News Editor Theatre Editor Travel Editor

Lauren Strain Jamie Dunn Laura Howarth Dave Kerr Sacha Waldron Daniel Jones Tasha Lee Alexandra Fiddes Jamie Faulkner Bram E. Gieben Alecia Marshall Paul Mitchell

Intern

Charlotte Casey

Production Production Manager Designer Sub Editor

Amy Minto Thom Isom Kristian Doyle

Sales/Accounts Northwest Sales & Marketing Manager Sales Executives

Caroline Harleaux Issy Patience John Stansfield

Lead Designer

Maeve Redmond

Company PA

Kyla Hall

Editor-in-Chief Sales Director Publisher

Rosamund West Lara Moloney Sophie Kyle

THE SKINNY

Photo: David Howarth

Photo: Andrew Ellis

P.15 Natalie McCool


Contents Up Front 06 Heston gets the Hero Worship: plus

Skinny on Tour, Shot of the Month, Stop the Presses, Online Only, and all of the BALLS.

29

08 Heads Up: Things to go to innit. 10

12

Danny Brown’s got nothing against the Scotch egg, so long as it’s nice and warm. He checks in with us before his UK festival dates this summer to reflect on quitting the purple stuff, changes in Detroit, and said British delicacy. With the release of their debut, Light Up Gold, Parquet Courts found themselves lumped in with the indie crowd – but that’s doing their fired-up punk roots a disservice. Follow-up Sunbathing Animal puts the world to rights.

15

Liverpool’s Natalie McCool knows what she wants: and with a new sound and single Wind Blows Harder, she’s gonna get it.

16

Words themselves become raw material for Lawrence Weiner in his show at the brand new Bury Sculpture Centre.

18

19

21

Moving into its 22nd year, Africa Oyé remains the country’s biggest free celebration of African music and culture. Incumbent artistic director Paul Duhaney explains its power to unite Liverpool’s communities in one big song and dance.

22

Druids? Rick Redbeard and Duncan Marquiss dismiss some theories about The Phantom Band; but new record Strange Friend finds them as atmospheric as ever.

24

25

Lifestyle

30

32

It’s been 25 years in the game for both Nightmares on Wax and Warp Records; with the release of compilation N.O.W. IS THE TIME, they celebrate in style.

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Next up: keen cyclists and mountain bikers explain how we’re well-placed to take that morning commute up a notch and head for the hills; plus, a newbie runner discovers why fell-running need not be so daunting.

June 2014

Deviance: Heather Peace on moving from the personal to the public; plus, one writer stands up for not taking a stand.

22 PARQUET COURTS

35

Food & Drink: As you ready your tinfoil barbie for the impending three days of sun, think again: what’s the real meaning of ‘true BBQ’? We also kick off our new Reviews section with visits to Jenny’s Bar in Liverpool, and Manchester’s best-kept secret, Phetpailin.

THE KAZIMIER

06 - EINDHOVEN PSYCH LAB - 07 EFFENAAR, EINDHOVEN THE NETHERLANDS THE KAZIMIER W/ EVOL

JULY 21 THE JAYHAWKS

AUGUST 18 FAT WHITE FAMILY + THE GROWLERS THE KAZIMIER

28 ST. VINCENT 02 ACADEMY W/ DHP

SEPTEMBER 26 - L’POOL INTERNATIONAL - 27 FESTIVAL OF PSYCHEDELIA CAMP AND FURNACE

NOVEMBER 04 THE WAR ON DRUGS

O2 ACADEMY W/ LIVERPOOL MUSIC WEEK 2014

THE KAZIMIER

TICKETS AVAILABLE ONLINE: TICKETWEB / SEETICKETS / TICKETLINE IN PERSON: PROBE RECORDS (SCHOOL LN) & THE BRINK (PARR ST) FOLLOW ON TWITTER: @HARVEST_SUN @LPOOLPSYCHFEST

Review

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Music: Your round-up of the month’s recommended gigs and festivals, plus the verdict on new releases from Tom Vek, Fucked Up, and debuts from locals Shield Patterns and Young British Artists.

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Clubs: Saine picks ten albums that’ve influenced his state of play, and there are too many Clubbing Highlights to shake a stick at, but what are you doing with a stick in a club, jesus what’s wrong with you.

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Art: Assessments of Open Eye and Cornerhouse Projects’ current offerings.

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Film: Cheap Thrills, Mistaken for Strangers and more in review; oh, and you totes need to come to our screening of Some Like It Hot at Screenfields on 5 Jun </plug>.

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Books/DVD: Well c’mon now, listing what’s in review this issue here would be spoiling it. (The suspense!)

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Theatre: Quarantine are first under the microscope in our new series of pieces focusing on trailblazing troupes, In Good Company… plus our Theatre ed gets along to The Lion King, and looks ahead to a musical with a difference at The King’s Arms.

49

Comedy: Adam Staunton gets the Spotlight treatment. Plus Competitions: Win shoes! Amazing, right? As well as tickets to the always-stonking Beacons Festival in August.

50

Listings: A list of the things.

Jay Mewes reflects on his potty mouth days. Silent Bob remains silent.

Want to explore more of the Northwest and get active at the same time? Our inaugural Sports Supplement takes an introductory look at the opportunities on our doorstep, and makes a splash (woahhh!) with: water!

THE SHIPPING FORECAST W/ FREAK BEAT LIVE

05 FUTURE ISLANDS

Fashion: Our section ed tips three Manchester School of Art grads for big things.

Sports Supplement 2014 27

JUNE 04 NIGHT BEATS + DJ AL LOVER

Showcase: You may recognise Emily Tilzey’s work from her recent posters for clubnights at Soup Kitchen; she explains the relationship between the ‘dreamy and distorted’ and ‘the more organised realms of design’ in her pieces.

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Brother of Matt, Tom Berninger’s rockumentary Mistaken for Strangers documents the fraternal ups and downs of being on the road with The National. Shelagh Delaney’s 1950s classic A Taste of Honey comes to the Lowry in a revival with Rebecca Ryan in the lead role. We ponder the longevity of this ‘magic play’.

We consider the rise of interest in yoga, which offers myriad benefits relating to mental and emotional wellbeing as well as physical; and, if poise and positioning are really your thing, why not explore the burgeoning world of circus and aerial arts?

Contents

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Editorial

Online Only Eyes to the website Clubs quizzes Jimmy Edgar on the significance of his symbolism, while Berlin producer Answer Code Request dishes us a DJ Chart to coincide with the release of his debut, Code, on Ostgut Ton. www.theskinny.co.uk/clubs

H

ello! I am at my quarterly loss for a thematic hook so I am simply going to tell you what is in this issue. Welcome! Who better placed to put together a Sports Supplement and urge you to get on your bikes/ in your trainers/inside a canoe than The Skinny team, currently tucking into seven portions of fish and mushy peas on ‘Chip Friday’? Turn to page 27 to find out how not to be like us. The man behind – or should we say on – that energetic cover shot is of course one Danny Brown, who, as anyone who’s seen him live will attest, has gotta be one of the most failsafe feelgood prospects of the festival season (he plays Parklife and Field Day). We found him relaxed and happily reflective on his porch in Detroit a few weeks ago, snuffing any received opinions you may have of him as either an out of control party animal or an introspective grump, and you can read the results on page 10 – before taking in Parquet Courts, Natalie McCool, and a checkin with Africa Oyé’s new artistic director as he prepares for the 22nd instalment of Liverpool’s landmark festival. Last but not least in Music, on our sister edition’s cover, bravely, er, braving the most unforgiving elements we’ve seen in a while, even for Scotland, are The Phantom Band – read their chat with us on p22, as they (somewhat disappointingly) put paid to the myths that they all commune with wizards from inside stone circles. Film also gets in on the act with an interview with Tom Berninger, filmmaker of on-the-road documentary Mistaken for Strangers and brother of Matt, who you know as the man who breaks all of the hearts as frontman of The National. And if you’re one of those people who don’t ‘get’ The National, it’s just a matter of time until one day you’re absently supping wine on a night in and High Violet cracks yer veneer. The degree show glee continues with our Fashion ed’s profile of three graduating designers from Manchester School of Art, while Emily Tilzey

of the same alma mater makes the Showcase spread with her colourful, dream-blurred pieces. Elsewhere, the Comedy Spotlight continues to rove, Theatre kicks off a series of profiles of the region’s least orthodox companies, and there are christenings and birthdays galore as Bury Sculpture Centre takes its first baby-steps as a new cultural destination – in contrast to 25 years in the game for Warp Records’ Nightmares on Wax. Our Food section gets a bit of a makeover this issue, with the introduction of bar and restaurant reviews. We’d like to think our first two choices, eclectic in contrast to each other, reflect what we hope to do with our coverage; that is, to offer critical, informed but fun perspectives on places you might not have tried, places worth a reappraisal, new menus and new openings. Oh, and to try all of the cocktails containing ‘Chinese takeaway syrup’ that there are, of course. Gizza shout if you know of any others. And finally! If you’ve picked this issue up in time, do come and join us on The Lawns at Spinningfields in Manchester on Thursday 5 June for a screening of Some Like It Hot, which our Film editor selected because, and I quote directly from him sitting right next to me as we go to print, “it’s a screwball riot, and Marilyn was never more effervescent.” Dedicated reportage there. The film begins at 7pm and it’s a measly three quid in – now we just need the skies to hold out. [Lauren Strain] ON THE COVER: Danny Brown, by Nick Bojdo Nick Bojdo is a Manchester-based freelance photographer with a keenness for gig photography and photo essays. His preferred medium is 35 mm black and white, shot with a Leica 3F. @boj_ www.25exp.blogspot.co.uk

Brown Brogues at Dot to Dot, Manchester, Fri 23 May, by Haydn Rydings

Chat

Our sister paper speak to Lauren Holt, who started out as a jazz singer in Liverpool and now

We talk to Laura Marney ahead of her new novel For Faughie's Sake, a wryly-observed political comedy about the referendum, sustainability, and American imperialism. wwww.theskinny.co.uk/books The Skinny will be at Doc/Fest and Edinburgh International Film Festival in June – look out for our reviews of the films screening. www.theskinny.co.uk/film

Jock Mooney - www.jockmooney.com

The Skinny on Tour

www.vimeo.com/nickbojdofoto

Shot of the Month 6

Demdike Stare are master craftsmen in hunting through hidden and secret histories to create scorching sonic experimentalism. But are they happy with being so readily categorised? Our Scottish colleague braves the witches' gaze to find out… www.theskinny.co.uk/clubs

finds herself in Edinburgh making enigmatic soul music with a hard edge as LAW. www.theskinny.co.uk/music

Either this month’s Skinny reader is really tiny (and has went to the bother of creating a mini version of The Skinny’s May issue that’s proportionate to her minuscule size) or she’s standing next to a really big bottle. Don’t let the glorious sunshine fool you, she didn’t travel far for this holiday adventure. Why is she here, you ask? Maybe she’s a football fan and was watching her team, who play at the Riverside, finish 12th in the Championship. Or maybe she ended up there by mistake? The town’s name, after all, is misleading: this is very much a borough of the North.

I’d give you more clues, but I’m a tees. For your chance to win Blackbird by Tom Wright (courtesy of those lovely folk over at Canongate), just head along to www.theskinny.co.uk/about/ competitions and tell us where you think they are visiting. Competition closes midnight Sun 29 Jun. Winners will be notified via email within two working days of closing and will be required to respond within 48 hours or the prize will be offered to another entrant. Full T&Cs can be found at www.theskinny.co.uk/about/terms

THE SKINNY


to locate nearby venues and events and gain an overview of what films are currently screening in their area. Launches 12 Jun, The Kazimier, Liverpool, 6pm. www.screeningfilm.com

Weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re very excited to be screening Some Like It Hot, Billy Wilderâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s ebullient gem, in collaboration with Screenfields on Thu 5 Jun. After the screening, the outdoor cinema season takes a break until 17 Jul (thereâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s some footy tournament on we hear) so itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ll be your last chance for a month to enjoy some cinema under the stars. Spinningfields, Manchester, 7pm, ÂŁ3. www.spinningfieldsonline.com/events/ screenfields

This is chicken liver mousse, not an orange

Hero Worship The British Street Food Awards have been taking in regional heats around the country on the run-up to the ceremony in Leeds in September â&#x20AC;&#x201C; founder Richard Johnson tells us why his dream judge would be his hero, Heston Blumenthal

I

donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t know how it happened. But happen it did. And, to make matters worse, it happened on a cookery show â&#x20AC;&#x201C; in front of a live studio audience. Heston Blumenthal, the most creative chef in the world, was cooking me smoked scallops. They were meant to taste like they had wafted in on a breeze of lavender. Instead they tasted like an old ladyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s underwear drawer. I spat them out. A lesser chef would have swanned off, but not Heston. All he was interested in was whether, next time, the scallops would work better with tangerine. We were younger then. Heston had just the one jacket â&#x20AC;&#x201C; now heâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s got 25. And heâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s gone from an oddbod (admittedly, an oddbod who ran the worldâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Number One restaurant, but an oddbod nonetheless) to a national treasure. Heâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s got two critically-acclaimed restaurants â&#x20AC;&#x201C; the Fat Duck and Dinner by Heston Blumenthal â&#x20AC;&#x201C; and a string of hit TV shows to his name. Heâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s even got his

BALLS.

own range in Waitrose. But food is still central to everything he does â&#x20AC;&#x201C; which is why he loves street food. This is what he said in GQ: â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;In a Britain that is fascinated by food, street eating has become a whole movement. It is not only delicious, but itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s brilliantly creative and good quality and celebrates our eccentricities. Fabulously decorated vans are popping up throughout the country at farmersâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; markets, festivals and events.â&#x20AC;&#x2122; And Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m trying to get him to come and judge the British Street Food Awards in Leeds in September. If he says yes, Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ll know heâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s really, really, really forgiven me for the smoked scallops. The North heat of the British Street Food Awards, hosted by Guerrilla Eats, takes place 14 Jun at Old Granada Studios, Manchester, 6pm, free Read our Q&As with some of the traders taking part online at theskinny.co.uk/food www.britishstreetfood.co.uk/awards/awards-2014



with Mystic Mark ARIES some sort of Hannibal Blumenthal  Like you open the UKâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s first human bellend restaurant, blowing diners away with your exotic award-winning cuisine. From a steaming bowl of bell-end soup to spicy bellend tempura, critics rave about the freshness of the ingredients, but a few bitter human rights campaigners picket the restaurant. You address the allegations that the humans are thrown back after their bell-ends have been harvested, assuring the media that all ingredients come from â&#x20AC;&#x153;sustainable sources.â&#x20AC;? You even hint that a human being has the ability to regrow the bellend once removed, and that since it probably contains no major nerve endings the procedure is completely painless.



TAURUS Kerry Katona has written more books than you ever will.

June 2014

GEMINI Thereâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s nothing better than getting home, putting your feet up and lighting your methane-rich farts.

CANCER You shouldnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t really be using the centrifuge at the lab for drying your underwear, but you have a big date on the Friday and need fresh pants. A single pube is left hurtling around the accelerator all weekend. Returning on Monday you discover something remarkable â&#x20AC;&#x201C; you have inadvertently isolated pure pube! Theorised for decades, the sheets of pube atoms possess a conductivity 10,000x higher than copper and 5,000x stronger than steel. You dream of a glorious future where all computer chips, kitchen worktops and drinking bottles are made from pube technology.





LEO It takes a big person to admit that they can only get out of their house by having firemen take the roof off and remove them with a crane.

Chester Film Co-Op are looking for the best film and video talent in the Northwest for their Emerging Talent summer show. Theyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re inviting submissions from film and moving image-makers who have graduated within the last three years from the Northwest region. The work can be of any subject, of any duration and can be existing or new work â&#x20AC;&#x201C; but nothing rude or violent, people, the films will be screened in the gallery window showing on to the street in the evenings. For details on how to submit work, go to chesterfilmco-op.co.uk/opencall. The deadline is 30 Jun; selected artists and filmmakers will be contacted mid-July. Weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re psyched for 24:7 theatre festival next month, but before that kicks off the festival is holding its first convention, called Herding Cats, at New Century House in central Manchester on 19 Jul. It includes a Market Place, where theatremakers can showcase their work. 24:7 are currently looking for contributors (set and costume designers, puppeteers and mask makers, lighting and sound designers, makeup artists, photographers, etc.) to take part, each of whom will occupy a display space free of charge 1pm-5pm and will be invited to attend the rest of the convention. Interested? Then get in touch with Robyn Leech at robyn@247theatrefestival.co.uk Ever wish it was easier to find what films are screening where in your area? Then youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ll be interested in Screening Film, a new website launching 12 Jun that will â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;provide a platform for independent, community based, and pop-up exhibitors to post details of their organisations and events in order to connect with audiencesâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;. Functioning as a map, directory and listings site, the plan is that Screening Film will allow film fans VIRGO This month the Tories raise the retirement age to +1 whatever your age is, a perpetual carrot dangling in front of your wrinkly, emaciated mouth.



LIBRA  You discover a family member after theyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve taken an overdose of helium, too late to save their life. They do, however, have time for a few emotionally loaded yet comically high-pitched last words.



Urban Outfitters have launched a great competition that offers you the chance to win prizes to some of the finest summer festivals. From The Peacock Society in France to Way Out West in Sweden and MS Dockville in Germany to Unknown in Croatia, you could be winning tickets plus accommodation and flights from across Europe. No camping required. Ready to be the most popular in your friendship group? Thought so â&#x20AC;&#x201C; then check out URBAN OUTFITTERS X FESTIVALS online at www.urbanoutfitters.com/uk/festival now, and get festival ready with their eclectic edit of everything you need for your best festival season ever, plus exclusive mix tapes, city guides and interviews.

Video Jam at Manchester Art Gallery

After Video Jamâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s hugely popular event at Manchester Art Gallery last January, where they curated a night of film and music in response to Jeremy Deller's All That Is Solid Melts Into Air, theyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re heading back to the gallery to respond to its upcoming exhibition, Ryan Ganderâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Make every show like itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s your last. For this special event, Video Jam are asking for submissions from artists working in all disciplines within the mediums of moving image and sound. The films selected for the programme will be paired with a musician/band/sound artist who will provide an original live accompaniment on the night. For more details on how to submit a piece, go to videojam.co.uk/manchester-art-gallery-call-out. Deadline is 13 Jun. Following the release of his cassette You Only Live Fifty Million Times, performance poet Zach Roddis will be touring the Northwest this summer, bringing his blistering spoken word to Liverpool, Manchester, Salford and beyond. Heâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ll be supporting bands that identify as DIY â&#x20AC;&#x201C; â&#x20AC;&#x153;this is important to me as it is the do-it-yourself attitude of punk music that I carry over into my own workâ&#x20AC;? â&#x20AC;&#x201C; and popping up at lit events and comedy/ poetry nights. Full details of the tour can be found here: facebook.com/zachroddispoet

she needs to knuckle down and concentrate in the run up to her GCSEs. CAPRICORN This month Right Guard develop an anti-perspirant so powerful it stops turds coming out of your body, giving you full 24-hour round the clock protection at work or play.





AQUARIUS Suffering from a voracious bout of feminine rotting, your doctor prescribes a twelve week course of Quim Relief with Rot-B-Gone technology.



PISCES The nits on your head have uncovered evidence of a mind-shattering conspiracy that their planet might actually be hollow.

SCORPIO If STDs were a game of bingo youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;d have won a car, a washing machine and a holiday for one in Tenerife.

SAGITTARIUS  Attending a PTA meeting about your daughter with the infamous demon headmaster, you enter the assembly hall to find him calmly sitting on a throne of skulls, a swirling cloud of blood mist enveloping his viscera-drenched horns. Taking a seat, he occasionally belches wasps as he explains that Staceyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s attendance has been satisfactory but

twitter.com/themysticmark facebook.com/themysticmark

Chat

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Sun 8 Jun

Mon 9 Jun

Tue 10 Jun

Folk at the Royal Northern College of Music will be getting their make on for the RNCM Craft Fair – just one of the many events they're hosting to highlight all they do. Alongside 40 stalls from local makers, there are also free percussion workshops at 1pm and a performance from Project Jam Sandwich at 3pm. RNCM, Manchester, 11am, Free

Catch a double-bill screening of Crop and Winter of Discontent as part of the Liverpool Arab Arts Festival, with each offering a poignant look at the revolution and uprising in Egypt. The former takes place in the offices of a state-run newspaper; the latter exposes the plight of the victims of state-instigated terror. Picturehouse at FACT, Liverpool, 7pm, £9.50 (£7.50)

HOME haven't yet moved into their new home, but they're not going to let this minor practicality stifle any plans! Catch Angel Meadow, a site-specific performance taking audience members into the grisly world of a Victorian slum at the heart of industrial Britain. Meet at Cutting Room Square, Manchester, until 22 Jun, various times, £10, see homemcr.org for more details

Button Boudoir RNCM Craft Fair

Angel Meadow

Crop

Sun 15 Jun

Help needed: the British Street Food Awards are looking for some hungry tums to help whittle down their 20-strong shortlist of street traders from the Northern heat to determine which lucky winner will be heading to the final in Leeds. It's a tough job, but y'know, someone has to do it. Old Granada Studios, Manchester, 6pm, Free

June's half-way point sees the start of the fifth annual Barnaby Festival (14-29 Jun), with over 35 exhibitions of contemporary art cropping up around Macclesfield. Take part in meet-the-artist events, collaborative drawing sessions and even a steampunk fancy dress party. Various venues, Macclesfield, until 29 Jun, see barnabyfestival.org.uk for full listings

British Street Food Awards

Photo: Bill Robinson

Sat 14 Jun

Stephen Morris

Fri 20 Jun

Sat 21 Jun

Marking the 70th anniversary of the death of Dutch abstract artist Piet Mondrian, a major new exhibition of his work goes on display at Tate Liverpool, complete with a reconstruction of his Paris studio. Catch a talk with Dr Danielle Sands, philosophy tutor at Queen Mary University, as she explores key works in the collection. Tate, Liverpool, 5.30pm, £5 (£3)

London-based trio Happyness return to our neck o’the woods following a tour with Ezra Furman and a packedout appearance at Sounds from the Other City last month. The melodic indie-popsters play in advance of their debut full-length release, Weird Little Birthday, which drops on 16 June. The Castle Hotel, Manchester, 7.30pm, £5

Africa Oyé, the UK’s biggest festival of African music and culture, takes to Sefton Park for its 22nd year, showcasing an eclectic mix of artists and ramping up the vibes with workshops, a DJ tent, an active zone and delicious food from around the world. The Saturday sees a headline appearance from Finley Quaye. Sefton Park, Liverpool, until 22 Jun, 12.30-9.30pm, Free

Mondrian - Reconstruction of 26 rue du Depart, Paris based on 1926 Photo by Paul Delbo

Photo: Fas Keuzenkamp

Thu 19 Jun

Finley Quaye

Happyness

Thu 26 Jun

Fri 27 Jun

Arguably the best thing to come out of Norfolk ever, Luke Abbott drops by the Kraak gallery to play a special set in support of his latest offering, Wysing Forest – his first full-length release since 2010’s Holkham Drones. He’ll be joined on the night by Rival Consoles and HOWES. Kraak, Manchester, 8pm, £7

Touring comedy night Festival of the Spoken Nerd makes its way North with a – you guessed it – nerdy night for the sci-curious, presented by geek songstress Helen Arney, stand-up mathematician Matt Parker and resident experiment guy, Steve Mould. They're joined by by guest scientists and comics, so make your heckles dead clever. 53 Degrees, Preston, 7.30pm, £15

If you like your punk rock noisy and your pizza, er, delicious, Antipop Records might just have the Friday night plans for you – as Punk Rock Pizza takes to Maguire's Pizza Bar for a night soundtracked by The Domestics, Casual Nausea, Code Break and Boycott the Baptist. Maguire's Pizza Bar, Liverpool, 8pm, £4 (£5 door)

Luke Abbott

8

Chat

Helen Arney

Photo: Idil Sukan/Draw HQ

Wed 25 Jun

Punk Rock Pizza

THE SKINNY

Photo: Alessandro Simonetti

EMA

Photo: Graeme Cooper

Botanical Beard

Photo: Jon Parker Lee

EMA – the stage moniker of South Dakotan artist Erika M. Anderson – takes her City Slang-released second album (and our April album of the month) The Future's Void out for a live airing. Her noise-folk sound will be matched by support from LA-based stoner popster Colleen Green. The Ruby Lounge, Manchester, 7.30pm, £9

Photo: Pam Berry

As the temperature slowly creeps up, June gives us plenty of excuses to be outdoors; either in a field for Parklife and Africa Oyé or with scrummy street food from Grillstock and the British Street Food Awards. Pop your head indoors briefly to catch EMA, Parquet Courts and Luke Abbott.

Graduates from The Manchester College present Yellow Banana, a student-led exhibition with photography spanning traditional landscapes to more conceptual work on display. The exhibition is the latest to use Castlefield Gallery's New Art Spaces. 4th Floor, Federation House, Manchester, until 5 Jun, 12-9pm, (preview, 3 Jun, 6pm), Free

Photo: Johnny Reay

Compiled by: Laura Howarth

Wed 4 Jun

Photo: Jessica Crewe

Heads Up

Tue 3 Jun


Sat 7 Jun

Manchester's outdoor cinema Screenfields ushers in the summer season with their winning combination of perfectly manicured lawns, deck chairs, and chilled beer. For the fourth screening of the season, our very own film editor was invited to pick the flick, settling on the 1959 comedy gem Some Like It Hot. Spinningfields, Manchester, 7pm, £3

Taking visitors on a simulated journey to the CERN institute in Switzerland to learn about particle physics and whatnot, immersive exhibition Collider will be staying open late to let us make like an accelerated proton at the roller disco, get handson with a screenprinting workshop, or rub shoulders with some scientists. MOSI, Manchester, 7pm, Free, booking required

Returning for its fifth year, the Parklife Weekender pitches up in Heaton Park for another two-day festival of jamz, inevitably resulting in a mass pilgrimage of the student population. Highlights across the eight stages include Snoop Dogg, Katy B, Jon Hopkins, and Warpaint. And did we mention all the afterparties...? Heaton Park, Manchester, 7-8 Jun, Returns only

Collider

Screenfields

Warpaint

Thu 12 Jun

Fri 13 Jun

Following the launch of the 13th Liverpool Arab Arts Festival on 7 June, Unity Theatre plays host to fourpart theatrical endeavour Waiting for Summer, presented by an all-female cast and exploring everything from cooking in Palestine to getting hitched in the midst of the Syrian uprising. Unity Theatre, Liverpool, until 12 Jun, 8pm, £10 (£8)

Unless you plan to take up residence under a rock for the World Cup season, it’s probably best to just get in the Rio spirit now. Camp and Furnace’s World Cup Fanpark might just be the ideal place to kick back with some Brazilian street food and a caipirinha, and enjoy the footie on the big screen. Camp and Furnace, Liverpool, until 13 Jul, Free

Presented in conjunction with Word of Warning, the Flare Weekender brings together some of the most daring and original artists from around Europe for two days of boundary-pushing theatre, including A Brave and Startling Truth by SheepKnuckle. Plus live music, discussions and workshops. Z-arts, Manchester, until 14 Jun, £16 weekend

Waiting for Summer

World Cup Fanpark

Tue 17 Jun

Wed 18 Jun

Voted by FACT’s Science Fiction: New Death visitors as one of the best sci-fi movies ever made, the 1986 classic Aliens will enjoy some time up on the big screen once more, reminding us of the depths of HR Giger’s terrifying genius. Bringing your own pillow to hide behind = optional. Picturehouse at FACT, Liverpool, 8.30pm, £9.50 (£8.50)

Grayson Perry's touring collection of tapestries continues its run at the Walker Art Gallery this month in advance of the Liverpool Biennial – catch a guided tour of The Vanity of Small Differences with curator Pauline Rushton and delve into Perry's luridly coloured world, in which he documents 'the taste tribes of Britain'. Walker Art Gallery, Liverpool, 1pm, Free

Showcasing the work of up-and-coming art-filmmakers, a touring selection of shorts, Selected 4, features the work of ten artists chosen by a panel of Jarman Award-shortlisted individuals. Expect to see the cream of the crop in contemporary, boundarypushing and experimental art film. Picturehouse at FACT, Liverpool, 8.45pm, Free, booking required

Grayson Perry, The Agony in the Car Park (2012)

Aliens

Photo: Stephen White

Mon 16 Jun

NYC-based, Americana-punk four-piece Parquet Courts show face in Liverpool for the first time with latest album, Sunbathing Animal – the follow-up to their Record Store Day single release of the same name, and their critically acclaimed 2013 EP, Tally All the Things That You Broke. The Kazimier, Liverpool, 7pm, £12.50

Holding the title of London's longest-running comedy after nine years on the West End, the hyper-condensed The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (Abridged) crams in all 37 plays in under 100 minutes. Life's too short to read all the Bard's best stuff, but you'll at least get the gist from this production. Stockport Plaza, 7.30pm, from £16.50

Tmesis Theatre present Wolf Read, an energetic show on the border between fairytale and reality, offering a disturbing portrayal of a woman held captive in the woods. Questions are raised as to whether the captor is after her body or mind, as the leading lady employs skilful physicality to portray menacing transformations. Unity Theatre, Liverpool, until 25 Jun, 8pm, £12 (£10)

Photo: Will Pitcher

Tue 24 Jun

Photo: Steve Gullick

Mon 23 Jun

Stockport Plaza

Flare Weekender

Kerstin Schroedinger Red She Said, Selected 4

Sun 22 Jun

Parquet Courts

Photo: Tom Johnson

Wed 11 Jun

Wolf Red

Sat 28 Jun

Sun 29 Jun

Mon 30 Jun

Put down those supermarket value burgers, chuck out that chintzy disposable grill and go get yourself some proper barbecue at Grillstock. Albert Square hosts two days of meat, music and, er, more meat, with Vintage Trouble headlining Saturday night, and Hayseed Dixie on the Sunday line-up. Albert Square, Manchester, until 29 Jun, £15 Saturday (£20 weekend)

The Pillbox Vintage bunch return to Leaf for their monthly residency, setting up shop upstairs with their hand-picked selection of vintage clothing, jewellery and home wares. Make a Sunday of it, mooch around the fair and then hotfoot it downstairs, where the Leaf lot will likely have something caffeinated or sweet to tempt you. Leaf, Liverpool, 11am-5pm, Free

Carl Grose’s Dead Dog in a Suitcase (and other Love Songs) – based on The Beggar’s Opera by John Gay – gets a world premiere in Liverpool under the direction of Mike Shepherd. Following the plight of contract killer Macheath as he falls in love and faces the hangman’s noose, we ask: what is the world coming to? Liverpool Everyman, until 21 Jul, times vary, from £11

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Grillstock

Retro Sunday

Dead Dog in a Suitcase (and other Love Songs)

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Photo: Sonia Mallan

Fri 6 Jun

Photo: Nick Rochowski for MOSI

Thu 5 Jun


A Good Egg As he prepares to play the Parklife Weekender, we speak to Detroit rap star Danny Brown about leaving the lean years behind, mankind’s internet future, and why hard-boiled savoury snacks are not the enemy Interview: Bram E. Gieben

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n the three years since the release of his worldwide breakthrough, the XXX mixtape, and its follow-up, 2013’s Old, Danny Brown has become very famous very quickly – and he has often found himself reduced to a caricature. The giggling, molly-addled party animal with a taste for narcotic cough syrup and weed – that’s Danny, right? After a handful of interviews in which Brown became fed up with the line of questioning, he began to be portrayed as emotional, hypersensitive – and he has spoken candidly about his struggles with depression and addiction, his shyness, his time in prison for drug dealing. The former jailbird and bipolar genius who just wants to be taken seriously – that’s Danny, yeah? The fact is, both of these caricatures are reductive. Speaking to Brown via a dodgy connection as he stands outside his house in Detroit, his home city, it quickly becomes apparent that he is a sensitive, thoughtful, consummately professional musician with real passion. He’s as excited about making both the most upfront, hedonistic party music for his core fans, and intelligent, brutally honest and confessional tracks for those who come to hip-hop seeking pure lyricism. He’s equally accomplished at both. That purist, lyrics-focused approach to hip-hop can have its downside in the live arena. “I’ve been to a lot of rap shows... that stuff can be pretty boring,” Brown says diplomatically. “I wanted to make my show more of a party atmosphere. A lot of people go to rap shows just to vibe in their head, but I wanted to make people dance.” This explains, perhaps, why a live set from Brown is more likely to feature the pill-popping anthem Dip than, say, the eloquent, nostalgic autobiographical track Grown Up. Brown is unapologetic that his shows tend to go ham more than they make heads nod. “I have a lot of fun performing,” he says. The crowd are into it too – witness the regular moshpits that break out at his shows. Has he ever feared a riot kicking off? He laughs. “I mean, we’ve had a few hairy situations. But at the end of the day, I don’t promote any negativity at my shows.” UK audiences will have another chance to experience this for themselves, as Brown heads to the UK to play the Parklife Weekender in Manchester, and Field Day in London. Brown is already a big fan of UK crowds: “I love being over there,” he says. “Every time I go I have fun.” Brown is excited by the internet age. In his thirties now, he grew up in the era before broadband, forums, Twitter and Instagram, but he has embraced the technology, both on a professional level, and a personal one. “I just look at it

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as the future, you know what I’m saying?” Brown becomes audibly excited, warming to the topic. “Like, you could be a radio star, you could be a TV star, but being an internet star is what we’re going to be talking about for the next few years, now. Like, video killed the radio star? It’s like the internet killed the TV.” That, says Brown, is no bad thing. “I don’t watch things on TV any more, I watch things on the internet. That’s my world. I don’t listen to the radio, so I don’t know what happens in that world. But anything that happens on the internet, I know what happened.” He is no prophet of doom when it comes to predicting the effect of global connectivity on the next generation, either: “I think life will be better for kids who grew up with the internet. I remember a time when the internet wasn’t there, but who’s saying that was a good time? The internet is the future. I’m just happy to be alive and be able to see stuff like that.”

“To me, hip-hop is an expression of your life. It’s the way you live” Danny Brown

Growing up in Detroit, with a DJ father who introduced him to house, techno and other electronic music, it’s no surprise that Brown’s choice of producers has been wide-ranging and genredefying – over the years he has worked with bass music luminaries such as Rustie, Baauer, Evil Nine and others, as well as a clutch of producers from Detroit and beyond. He talks passionately about his love for grime and dubstep, particularly Dizzee Rascal, whose influence can be felt in Brown’s tightly-laced double-time cadences. He was never tempted to become a producer: “I played around with beat machines my whole life because they were around me, but I always looked at it like writing was my thing,” he says. “I always wanted to be a rapper.” Should hip-hop always be a wide-ranging, diverse, portmanteau art form, borrowing freely from a huge array of different musical styles? Brown seems reluctant to reduce the genre to a set of instructions. “To me, hip-hop is an expression of your life,” he says. “It’s the way you live.

Whatever you think that sound should be, that’s what it should be. I don’t think anybody should cater to what’s going on around them; just be yourself. Use the sound that you think you should use. Don’t follow, just lead.” Asked about Detroit, which has experienced grinding poverty and a mass exodus in the wake of continued industrial, infrastructural and economic collapse in the past decade, Brown is cautiously optimistic. “Whenever things get that bad, when there’s not a lot of money around, people have different ways to express themselves,” he ventures. “Like now, we have a really thriving art community. A lot of artists are moving to Detroit. It’s a place where you can do graffiti. You can put up a tag, and it’s probably going to be there for a long time, it’s not just going to disappear next week. It’s starting to make the city look better, actually, the more and more graffiti that goes up – we have artists from overseas, from New York – all big-time graffiti artists. There’s a big art community there, so that’s what I see happening.” Brown served time for drug offences before his rap career took off in earnest, and he credits this experience as a formative one. “Before that happened, I would say I was probably a bit more shy. I figure it worked out, just for my personality, in some sense. When you’re in jail, if you don’t talk, you don’t eat. You have to speak up for yourself. You’ll always be around different personalities, every day. So... I had to start talking. And once I got out of jail, it was just easier to communicate with other people. Before, I was just real shy. I wouldn’t tell people I knew how to rap.” With those years firmly behind him, Brown is still shaking off the notion that he is a full-time party animal. He has given up drinking ‘lean’ – a concoction of codeine-laced cough syrup and soda favoured by rappers such as Soulja Boy, who was recently rumoured to have bought up a large stack of the medicine’s ingredients after the company that made it elected to close down production. “I didn’t hear about that,” Brown says with some trepidation. He takes a deep breath. “That’s on him. I drank lean for like two years maybe, and it was just a bad time in my life. Good luck to him, you know?” Are the lean years something he is happy to put behind him? “I’m happy leaving it in the past,” he says. “I don’t even want to think about that stuff.” Giving up lean was no picnic, either – and yet, when he went to The Guardian’s office to be interviewed about his music, they decided to pitch him a humorous interview whereby Brown would try various British delicacies, the first being a Scotch egg. “A lot of people look at me and think I’m a funny person,” he laments. “And I

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am, I have a warm personality. But at that time, that was when I was starting to get off lean – I was very moody, and I was going through a lot of things. I wasn’t up for playing any games. I just wanted to do the interview, be serious, and then be out, you know? I didn’t expect to go to The Guardian and be having jokes.” Brown, understandably, walked out of the interview. Now, the rumour that he hates Scotch eggs follows him around like a bad smell – The Skinny is happy to help him debunk this particular falsehood. “See, I ate a Scotch egg before that,” he insists wearily. “I don’t have a problem with Scotch eggs. The Scotch egg I ate was fresh from a restaurant, it was warm, it was nice. But this Scotch egg happened to be one he had just grabbed from a deli or something – it was cold, and it looked like it had been sitting there for who knows how long. I just wasn’t up for it that day. It wasn’t really bad, it was more of a funny situation. I just left because... I was there to work. I wasn’t there to play any games.” Brown is not currently working on a followup to Old. “I take my time to make albums. I’m not the type of person that goes to the studio every day,” he says. “I’m not the type of person who literally has to make music all the time, because the music is not my life. I have to live life, in order to have things to write about. So right now, I’m in a living phase.” He’s happy at Fool’s Gold: “I love those guys, they are my family. That’s the label that I wanted to sign to. At the end of the day, there aren’t so many labels that are going to let an artist take his time with his music. They trust me, they give me that space to do what I have to do, to make these projects.” How does that differ from releasing his own music? “I guess the biggest difference to when I was releasing my own stuff is that being with Fool’s Gold, it’s a movement. They have a scene. That’s what enticed me to want to be over there. Before, I was just putting music on the internet. With the label, that music is able to reach a lot of people that it probably wouldn’t have before.” Crucially, music should never feel like work, as far as Brown is concerned. This is why so many producers have praised him for his easy, natural flow and relaxed approach in the studio. Brown laughs when reminded of a few of these comments. “I only do projects I can have fun with, so if I’m having fun, it’s always going to be an easy time.” Danny Brown plays the Parklife Weekender in Manchester on 7-8 Jun Old is out now via Fool’s Gold www.xdannyxbrownx.com

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Ascending the Animal Kingdom Simultaneously everyone’s favourite band and completely misunderstood in 2013, Parquet Courts are back to clarify their position with Sunbathing Animal

Interview: Simon Jay Catling

arquet Courts are not as sullen as you think. Sure, you might think it – after all, plenty of the music press have tried to claim it. However, as their guitarist Austin B. Brown speaks to The Skinny enthusiastically over a Skype line from his Brooklyn home, while preparing to head out and watch the New York Yankees, there’s nothing like the hostility or antagonism that was reported last year in the wake of the group’s sleeper success story of an album, Light Up Gold. They leave that to their music. “Yeah some of those interviews seemed like we were being rude, right?” starts Brown, addressing a handful of articles written in the UK last year that suggested something of a distaste towards the press from the punk four-piece; “but on most of those occasions we were talking for well over an hour, talking about specific lyrics in detail and giving anecdotes – and quotes were being taken from the first five minutes of them meeting us. I understand that for a writer there needs to be a narrative – but for me it was a frustrating experience and as a new band it then becomes hard to fight off the reputation that comes from that type of writing.” Part of the problem seemed to be that Light Up Gold, initially released in late 2012 by the band themselves through Dull Tools, wasn’t picked up until months later by a music media who – kicking themselves for missing a trick in the ever vapid race to be first – hastily tacked on a narrative before meeting the people behind it. It’s easy to see why they opted to paint the band in the image of disaffected mid-20s caricatures; although Light Up Gold was the group’s second album, it bristled and spat with the unedited rage of youth. It was a record that was – as Brown says – “about growing up in 90s America and figuring out what our place in the world was. Working out how to explain it.” With an intelligent, caustic wit to it too, it felt like one of the most vital punk records of recent times – though Brown admits he wasn’t happy with where some people seemed to want to bracket them. “We were being put into this slacker rock/90s nostalgia kind of thing – and we didn’t really feel like we were doing that at all,” he says, before admitting that such misappropriation in part influenced their forthcoming record – describing the band as “more deliberate” in their intentions now. Recorded over a handful of sessions with friend and long-term producer Jonny Schenke, Sunbathing Animal certainly shares traits with its predecessor – the sense of disillusionment waiting for a promised future that never arrived; a vocal delivery that toes the line between snarling sarcasm and aching sincerity – but in its 13 tracks lies an even greater sense of claustrophobia. Guitar tones are so clean and jagged that they sound like they’ve been scrubbed until they’re bleeding and raw; lyrical imagery is discomforting in its up-closeness. ‘Bodies made of slugs and guts,’ yelps Andrew Savage on its opening track. ‘What colour is blood? The same as it always was,’ he drawls elsewhere, as the ante is upped further by instrumental melodies that pick and bite as they pass, nipping enough to aurally draw crimson. Blurring man and animal throughout, the claustrophobic nature of the record peaks at the seven-minute Instant Dissassembly, which sees the refrain ‘I can’t breathe, I can’t breathe’ repeated over and over again, the band seemingly fully aware that they’re pushing its repetition beyond tolerable levels. “When we started out to make this record, the focus was – more than ever – on the lyrics,” Brown says. “They came first in the process and

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Parquet Courts

are meant to be right at the front, so that you’re forced to listen to them. I mean, I don’t know if there’s a hook or chorus on the whole record; but that forces the audience to create their own, depending on which lyric pops out to them – so in its own way it becomes the chorus.” The intention is that the narrative is broken down by each individual, allowing for a myriad of possible interpretations to arise – although Brown is keen to iterate that there is a cohesive concept behind it too.

“Although we’re talked about in the greater indiesphere now, where we exist is in a different place” Austin B. Brown

“The songs are written from a place of longing for something better,” he elaborates. “This record has a lot of themes, finding the grey areas between obligation and freedom, between oppression and expression and filling your duties to yourself but also working out how they fit into your place in the world.”

For Parquet Courts, their place is on the brink of changing rapidly, even while they get used to their recent ascension. If they were the most anticipated act of the week at Texan music showcase SXSW in 2013, then this year saw perhaps an even greater demand as the music industry – now fully up-to-speed – licked their lips at the prospect of another band to sculpt and mould. Brown, though, is insistent that won’t happen. “We did some official showcases, sure, but all that did was give us the money to get there – and with the extra cash we rented out this DIY venue called the Owl on the east side of Austin and booked our own show and it was awesome.” Brown says that it was the best line-up of the whole weekend “because it wasn’t put together by industry content providers or brands” – and it’s hard to argue with him. Eagulls, from Leeds but cut from similar cloth as the Brooklynites, and Sacred Bones’ guttural garage-psychheads Destruction Unit were among those that played on a bill that re-asserted the company Parquet Courts feel they truly belong with. “We have a duty – and a desire – to maintain the relationship we have with the community that has supported us up until this point,” Brown says. “Although we’re talked about in the greater indiesphere now, where we exist is in a different place. We’ve a pretty strong will and determination to show that and maintain our place in that world.” Before coming to Europe the group have a show coming up in New York and, backing up that quote, the venue they’ve chosen is Sugarhill Supper Club – a food banquet hall in Brooklyn. “We could’ve played a standard venue but it didn’t feel appropriate given that we’re playing at home,” comes the explanation. Decisions like these allow Parquet Courts to maintain their

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sense of where they came from – self-funded, self-released and truly DIY – even as they take advantage of the opportunities that are coming their way, so long as it suits them. “It would be impossible to ignore the machine,” Brown admits. “But I don’t see where we are now as a different place ethically; it’s just an extension of what we’ve always been doing. We came from a place in New York playing DIY shows with our friends and that goal hasn’t left at all.” Last year the Guardian wrote that the band were at the forefront of an “outernet” culture, purposefully minimising their presence online and what information people can find out about them. While such a movement is surely inevitable in an age of internet over-saturation, Brown rejects the term when applied to his band – pointing to the fact that they have a Wordpress and admitting that someone ultimately set up a Facebook page for them anyway. “I guess what we don’t want to do, though, is get into the advertising business,” he ruminates, talking – as he has for our whole conversation – in a slow but concise manner. “Part of the fun is people finding you for themselves, right? I mean people are writing about us and we can’t really help that – and to be honest I don’t feel a desire to stop that, because we do want to share our music – but it’d be a bummer if you watched a Parquet Courts ad before you watched a video on YouTube or something. It does fans a disservice to make them feel like they’re being advertised to. As a band we make records and play live, and I don’t think our duty should really go beyond that.” Sunbathing Animal is released 2 Jun via Rough Trade. They play The Kazimier, Liverpool, 22 Jun www.parquetcourts.wordpress.com

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Photo: Jacob Daneman

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Boom Town Glory Natalie McCool was working with one of the most respected producers in music. As she readies herself for a new single and an appearance at next month’s X&Y Festival, she tells us why it wasn’t working out

Interview: Simon Jay Catling Photography: Andrew Ellis into a studio with someone she didn’t know at all – the pair struck up an easy understanding. “He just gets it,” she says. “I have been writing really poppy songs recently, which is really fun. But Dave’s been the one to pull them more towards where I want them, adding guitar textures and different bits of percussion. Plus I’m a real guitar person – I’d had no real interest in keyboards or anything like that; but Dave put all this extra stuff on and managed to twist it to make it fit.” The first fruition of the pair’s creative partnership is new single Wind Blows Harder, out on Young & Lost Club at the end of June. Likened by McCool to Thin Air – the Bernard Butlerfeaturing single of her debut LP – it acts as a bridge to new material that she says is “far removed” from what we’ve heard of her so far. However, the seeds of McCool’s new direction are there – in the crisp production around the percussion, in the sparser feel to the elements that shadow the song’s key components of vocals and guitar, and in the lightest bleed of distortion, which works to pull everything together with a slightly scuzzy undertone. “A lot of the time during the making of the last album I was trying to write a really interesting guitar part, but they were ending up so busy it was like, ‘What do you put over that?’ There was no room.” She says, “Here the song comes first, and any guitar parts are textural and not as dominant.”

“You’ve got to be careful. You can go as big as you want; but if the song isn’t there then that’s all for nothing” Natalie McCool

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atalie McCool’s life in music has so far been defined by awards and the events that closely followed them. First, there was winning the Yamaha-sponsored Make It Break It award for songwriting – a competition judged by Coldplay’s Chris Martin and the chairman of the Music Producers Guild, Steve Levine, among others. McCool was still a teenager when she won the Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts-based title in 2007; but it set her and Levine on a collision course, resulting in him signing the LIPA graduate to his own Hubris Records and working as her producer through two EPs and her selftitled debut LP, released last year. Then came the Liverpool Music Week Awards last autumn, and the singer-songwriter’s success in winning Best Female Artist of the Year. “I’m proud to have won it,” says a cheerful McCool over the phone. “Titles like that are cool because they get people interested.” She hasn’t, however, put too much stock in such accolades. “I don’t think I’ve got to prove anything around it,” she adds. “This year there’ll be another winner after all, and it’ll move on.” Given such recognition and her ongoing partnership with Levine – in the 80s recognised as one of the finest pop producers in the game, thanks to his work with Culture Club – from the outside it appeared that McCool had managed to set herself on a resolutely upwards trajectory. Her self-titled album

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– a collection of new songs and those taken from previous releases – was a rich listen, balancing the simplicity of her natural tendency for writing pop hooks with lavish production that took in string arrangements and embellished its tomheavy rhythms with cavernous reverb. However, it becomes apparent during our conversation that McCool doesn’t necessarily consider herself a pop artist; and there’s an incongruity between that record – with its bright production and defined elements – and the person speaking down the phone of her love of, on the one hand, Deftones, and on the other, Cocteau Twins. The latter perfected a balance between songcraft and textural ambiguity that it’s clear McCool would like to achieve herself. “I was pleased with my first album, but it didn’t really reflect me as an artist one hundred per cent,” she admits. “What I’ve always wanted to do is to start with a great song, but then pull it towards somewhere more alternative. The album was very commercial-sounding, which isn’t really me. A lot of the time you couldn’t hear my guitar on some of the songs – which is important to me.” And so they split. Not acrimoniously – Levine lives on Merseyside and McCool still chats to him – but, in moving on from one of the most well-known producers in the country, the Widnes-born songwriter has boldly shunned a potentially safer route to making a commercial

dent in favour of going it alone to reach artistic fulfilment. She is aware that she tiptoes the line of those big, chart-friendly melodies, but says, “You’ve got to be careful. You can go as big as you want; but if the song isn’t there then that’s all for nothing. I play solo a lot as well as with a band, and always think, ‘Would that work in a solo gig?’” Confessing that she’s been a long-time defender of Coldplay’s Chris Martin as a songwriter (“that first Coldplay album remains timeless and I think people forget how good it was”), even she cites their recent output as an example of an act uncoupling themselves from their true artistry to instead tick marketing boxes. “They’ve just completely lost it, haven’t they!?” she sighs. Given what McCool’s been saying, the news that she’s linked up with fellow Liverpudlian David Berger from Outfit to produce her new material sounds like a perfect match. With Outfit’s brilliant debut album Performance a perfect storm of balancing pop nous with more further-reaching sensibilities – in their case taken from the worlds of house and krautrock – Berger seems like someone who’ll understand the tightrope McCool wants to walk with her own sound. Having previously done live engineering for McCool at a festival, Berger invited her to visit his studio after liking what he was mixing. Months later, having split from Levine, she decided to take him up on his offer and – despite the nerves of going

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Natalie McCool

Wind Blows Harder taps into McCool’s familiar use of weather and nature as metaphor – implemented, in this instance, to document the conflict of a doomed relationship. It’s not a trait she can really explain, though when pushed suggests, “I grew up in Widnes, which is very industrial. It’s got a big power station which is kind of the whole landscape. So maybe it’s a reaction to that.” It’s one of a handful of new songs she’s been working on that will see the light of day over the next few months – unlikely many, McCool isn’t one to stockpile songs and then discard them. “Every song I write I probably release, which is quite strange,” she says. “I’m quite a perfectionist in a way, I guess – I don’t like to leave things unfinished.” Having collaborated with fellow Liverpudlians Bird last year, McCool has also joined the band Broken Men on guitar and claims that it’s been the influence of these local projects, as well as Liverpool’s current tight-knit community in general, that have informed her more than anything else of late. “Everyone’s just mates and plays with each other round here at the moment,” she observes. “It’s booming. I hope it booms for a long time!” Wind Blows Harder is out 30 Jun via Young & Lost Club Natalie McCool plays X&Y Festival, O2 Academy, Liverpool, 11 Jul www.nataliemccool.co.uk

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Bury Bury Good for You Bury Sculpture Centre opened its doors for the first time last month with the fourth edition of Bury Text Festival. The Skinny caught up with Sculpture Centre boss Tony Trehy and super-sculptor/conceptualist Lawrence Weiner

Interview: Sacha Waldron

Lawrence Weiner at Bury Sculpture Centre 2014

“THE WORK DOES NOT HAVE AN AFTERLIFE IT HAS A LIFE THE SCULPTURE WORKS IN ANY WAY THAT IT CAN BE REPRESENTED TO ANY ONE + ONE DOES HOPE THAT THE RECEIVER REMEMBERS IT IN THE SAME MANNER AS THEY REMEMBER ANYTHING THEY HAVE SEEN THAT HAS IN SOME WAY MANNER OR FORM AFFECTED THEIR PERCEPTION OF THEIR PLACE IN THE SUN WHICH IS THE WHOLE POINT OF THE OPERATION” LAWRENCE WEINER AMSTERDAM 22 MAY 2014

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ury Sculpture Centre opened its doors for the first time last month with the launch of the fourth Bury Text Festival and a new exhibition from superstar conceptualist, New Yorkbased Lawrence Weiner. The Centre occupies the ground floor of Bury Art Museum, a space formerly occupied by Bury Library and is the coalescence of several long-standing conversations: the role of public sculpture in the area, the growth of Bury Text Festival and the ongoing relationship between Lawrence Weiner and the Northwest. The Sculpture Centre’s history is rooted in the Irwell Sculpture Trail which runs from Salford Quays up to Bacup in the Pennines. “The trail really came out of a phenomenon of the 1990s,” says Tony Trehy, the driving force behind the Centre and founder of Text Festival. “Public art was very active and people were very interested.” The big money involved, from organisations such as the National Lottery, meant that projects such as the Irwell Trail could invest in internationally renowned artists and attract a wider audience. Today the Irwell Trail includes the work of over 70 artists across 33 miles. During this boom time, Trehy took over Bury Museum’s gallery programme. “This is when we really began to join up our thinking between the public art commissioning and the gallery. If an artist was invited to make a new work we would have an exhibition simultaneously.” This was working fine for a while but the economy was changing. “Of course the Lottery money ran out,” he says. “The partnership between the local

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authorities was faced with the question of what would be the next step.” Bury, at the time, was going through a library review and it was inevitable that there were going to be cutbacks. Part of the decision taken was to reduce the size of the library. “It seemed like the perfect opportunity,” says Trehy. “We had been thinking about the success of other sculpture centres like Tatton or Yorkshire Sculpture Park. The difference, particularly with YSP, is that you arrive somewhere, a hub, before you begin to navigate the park. Having a first point of public contact for the trail seemed a good [idea]. We also wanted this indoor hub to have an exhibition programme with its own integrity – somewhere that would work as an individual experience.” So Bury Sculpture Centre was born, and its launch exhibition of the language-based sculptures of Lawrence Weiner coincides with the fourth edition of Text Festival – fitting, given the space’s former use as a library. Weiner made his name in the 1960s conceptual art movement alongside Joseph Kosuth, Carl Andre and Robert Barry. Working prolifically since the start of his career, he is collected by most major museums and is still travelling and exhibiting all over the world. Weiner uses language in his work – phrases, sentences or individual words on paper or vinyl on the gallery walls. In Bury, the gallery exhibition opens with black text on bright blue: CONTOURED OVER THE HORIZON & / JOINED AT MANY FIXED POINTS / ALONG THE CURVE DELINEATING / THAT AT THE WATER & / THAT NOT AT THE WATER “The work is an aphorism which came about in a conversation with the curators in Bury,” says Weiner. “As with most aphorisms, it functions as a drawing using sculptural materials.” In the public realm his materials change accordingly: “None of the work is site-specific,” he says, “although often the materials themselves are specific to the location. My work over the years has changed in its awareness of various cultural materials. As the work finds different plinths, material itself becomes more informed and hopefully so do I.” Language, for Weiner, is resolutely sculpture. “It is not sculptural, but sculpture. The material is language.” This is not the first time Weiner has

poetry, text art, sound, media and live art. Now that the Sculpture Centre is up and running, it is a busy year ahead. After Text Festival closes in August, a group show, Remix, is planned, which links up to another international festival, Manchester’s 2014 Asia Pacific Triennial. Curated by David Thorp, Remix will bring together the work of three artists from the UK and three from China. Trehy comments that this will be “more recognisable as a sculpture show,” which may answer some critics of the current space and exhibition. During my visit I overheard several people commenting, “Is this it?” or something along the lines of, “Where’s all the sculpture then?” This is to be expected, in some sense, with an exhibition of sculpture that is wall-based and in a space that has been under the spotlight recently. When I put it to Weiner that some visitors to his exhibition might take quite a conservative view of his work, he firmly admonished me, “I’ve had the pleasure of working in Bury several times and I don’t find it conservative.” Bury, says Trehy, “has always had a very international outlook. We have a commitment to our young people to engage in the dialogues of globalisation. We are not apart from that just because we are not a large city... We have a reLawrence Weiner sponsibility.” This is followed through in the commitment to not just temporary exhibitions, but in the permanent public works that the area of Bury Weiner’s influence stretches further than his is known for. “The sculpture is part of the patrimony of public commissions in the area. It turns out that the Text Festival itself was inspired in part by the Bury,” says Weiner, and he’s right. Chanced upon, artist. Trehy had, over his career, been establish- revisited, discussed and endlessly snapped, works in the public realm have their own existing himself not only as a curator but also as a ence beyond the exhibition moment or the ‘big poet. Initially he saw these practices as separeveal.’ They can also be passed down through rate. “I had been talking with Lawrence about generations and transform slowly into the landhow language functions, but then I was talking with the American poet Ron Silliman and realised scape, becoming part of a place. I’m glad they have not just crash-landed a fancy new archithat I had just had the same conversation with tectural building into the town. The Sculpture both of them. There seemed to be an artificial Centre is the product of ideas developing over distinction between these practices and I was time, opportunities taken, threads coming toalso making that artificial distinction by keeping gether and various conversations arriving at the them separate in my own work. I wondered what same place at the same time. would happen if I put them in the same space at the same time. The first festival happened in Lawrence Weiner runs at Bury Sculpture Centre until 30 2005 and it has just kept on growing and getting Aug. His public sculptures are installed along the Irwell a bigger response.” The festival has now become Sculpture Trail permanently increasingly non-art form specific and includes www.textfestival.com

exhibited in the Northwest, or even Bury. In 1998 he was commissioned to make a work as part of Arttranspennine98 for a site in Hull. The work, Horizon, consisted of words on steel placed at different heights on the water-side of a river wall. As the water levels go up and down, the words are obscured or revealed. In 2000 there was risk of the work being put on sale or destroyed and Weiner gave the commissioners the option to re-site the work somewhere in the North of England, preferably in a river location. Bury Art Gallery saw the opportunity and, in conversation with Weiner, the work was reconfigured for a new location on the River Irwell under the new title Radcliffe Horizon. Keen to invite Weiner to make a new work for the Trail, when the 2005 Text Festival came around it seemed like the right moment. A large steel text in red, Water Made It Wet, was installed on a railway bridge by the canal in Radcliffe that year and an exhibition of Weiner’s poster archive was held in the gallery.

“The material is language”

ART

THE SKINNY


Image: Bartlomiej Staszowski BA (Hons) Photography

The UK Biennial of Contemporary Art 5 July – 26 October www.biennial.com #biennial2014 liverpoolbiennial @biennial

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EXHIBITIONS

Join us at our degree show exhibitions and see our students’ most creative work in the fields of Architecture, Design, Fashion, Fine Art and Photography. All welcome – free parking and free admission

Private View Fri 13 June, 6 - 9pm Public View Mon 16 June – Sat 21 June, 10am - 6pm Guided tours available for industry Call 01772 894106 or book online: www.uclan.ac.uk/cf

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June 2014

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Blood on the Road You know his sibling Matt, frontman for The National. Now meet Tom Berninger, the family misfit who followed his big bro on the road with a camera and a thirst for rock’n’roll excess. The result is the hilarious and touching doc Mistaken for Strangers

Interview: Lewis Porteous

Tom and Matt Berninger

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n the 30th anniversary of its release, This is Spinal Tap remains the definitive music documentary, a work of fiction against which real life characters and events will forever be judged. If the enduring popularity and relevance of Rob Reiner’s monumental comedy prove anything, it’s that the cinema-going public like their rock stars to be larger-than-life personalities whose inflated sense of artistic worth somehow withstands the constant failure and humiliation to which they subject themselves. Tom Berninger’s Mistaken for Strangers has garnered rave reviews and proven a hit with festival audiences, most likely because it subverts the conventions of the ‘rockumentary’ while still serving up the genre’s requisite helpings of onthe-road buffoonery. Although conceived as a piece in honour of The National, Brooklyn’s arenafriendly purveyors of urban isolation and despair, the film places its focus squarely on the director himself. A decade younger than his brother Matt, who happens to be the band’s frontman, Berninger is very much an aimless slacker at the onset of a movie that turns out to be both the trigger and document of his own hard-won redemption. Most of the comic moments found in this otherwise deeply affecting work are the result of the protagonist’s efforts to immerse himself in a world of rock’n’roll excess long abandoned by the consummate professionals to whose coat-tails he clings. “I’m not saying The National are boring, they’re just a well-oiled machine,” explains the younger Berninger brother via Skype. “I began on tour with these guys around the release of their High Violet album, when they were kind of finished with their partying days. When I got on board, they were playing these big shows and

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they were being responsible. I felt kind of left out by that. Not that I was purposefully being the irresponsible one, but there was nothing juicy to film so I just filmed myself kind of... partying.” Recognising that sharing his hedonistic attitude would have spelled disaster for the performers, Mistaken for Strangers stands as a uniquely pragmatic glimpse into the inner workings of an immensely popular live act. “The reality is that they still have the best jobs in the world,” he says. “There’s a definite camaraderie among the five core members of the band. But really, these big shows are tiring and a lot of people spend a lot of money to go to these giant venues and you have to play for those people in the very back seats.” Of course, Berninger can say this with hindsight, but it took several international flights before the reality of his responsibilities as a roadie was made clear to him. “I was always kind of nervous, not around The National, but around the opening bands and these indie rock stars that would occasionally pop up at a show. I just wanted to have fun and so I started drinking too much. I was drinking when I was filming and when I was trying to be a roadie. I thought that loosening up with a few beers or a few shots would make me a better person and it didn’t. It made me harder to deal with, made me sloppy. I either wanted to be re-hired as a roadie or make something cool for the band. I was under a lot of pressure and when I finally got fired, things really started to suck because I got worried about the footage I was getting. It took a long time to manipulate it into a coherent story.” Indeed, it’s at Berninger’s lowest point that the movie takes a truly interesting turn, the drunken auteur turning the camera on himself for a prolonged bout of brutal self-examination.

“I’m never going to be as cool as my brother in a certain way, but I’ll be cool in a different way” Tom Berninger

“I owe a lot of that decision to Carin Besser, Matt’s wife. She and I cut the entire movie, up until the last six months. One day, I was just scrambling through footage and she saw me drunk on the bus. I was like ‘Oh Jesus, I guess that’s kind of funny,’ but I didn’t put it in the movie because at the time I shot it, I was really drunk and thought that people were going to want to see Matt’s brother Tom partying like a rock star on the band’s bus. But when I looked at the footage, it was sad and embarrassing. I was slobbering drunk and it was kind of depressing. It was Carin who said, ‘This is what the movie’s really about. You’ve got to put this kind of stuff in.’ So then I told her I had a big scene of me crying to the camera and she demanded to see it. It was really hard for me to watch and I still don’t like watching it. But she convinced and pushed me to make the movie about myself and I wouldn’t have been able to do that without her.

FILM

“I was in a nervous-breakdown mode and was overwhelmed with everything, like I was going to cry. But this is where the weirdness of the whole movie comes in. I thought, ‘Let’s just talk to the camera and if I cry, I cry. This is what I’m feeling.’ So I did, I pressed record and it was like, ‘What kind of movie am I making here? I am in control of the movie, but it’s definitely controlling me in some way.’ So I can’t really tell you what came first, but I knew that if I cried, that might be compelling. So I did it. It was a weird moment.” Difficult as it is to watch some of the movie’s more intimate scenes, least of all for the director himself, it’s their catharsis and honesty that elevate Mistaken for Strangers to something approaching great art. As Berninger admits, “Finding myself was what I personally got out of the whole experience, because I became OK with who I am. I’m never going to be as cool as my brother in a certain way, but I’ll be cool in a different way. I had to stop comparing myself to people, to my brother or to other filmmakers out there who are my age and doing amazing things. To have fun with my own life and stop being so embarrassed by my situation. “I’m more confused about my career trajectory right now than I was going into the tour. I’m 34 years old and I think in the last two years I’ve grown up a lot and there are different pressures now to those that I had before. They’re all good pressures, I have to say, but the film has changed me and I don’t know if I like this feeling!” Mistaken for Strangers is released 27 Jun by Dogwoof A special preview screening of Mistaken for Strangers takes place 14 Jun, which will be followed by an on stage Q&A with Tom Berninger and Matt Berninger that will be broadcast live via satellite to 57 participating cinemas nationwide, including FACT in Liverpool and The Lowry in Manchester

THE SKINNY


The Sweetest Revival Shameless veteran Rebecca Ryan injects a shot of vitality into Shelagh Delaney’s 1950s masterpiece, A Taste of Honey

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here are a handful of plays that never leave our stage, remaining relevant and touching to us all. Shelagh Delaney’s social realist classic, A Taste of Honey, is one such jewel: a magic play that refuses to fade or lose its touch. Its longevity has been recently demonstrated. It emerged in the Edinburgh Lyceum last year and just this May wrapped up a critically acclaimed run at the National. Now the play continues its revival with a tour that started at Hull Truck in March and reaches the Lowry in Salford this month. A Taste of Honey tells the story of spirited teenager Jo, a girl with a mind of her own and problems to match. She’s constantly bickering or rebelling against her acerbic, bullying mother Helen, and determinedly looking for something to add a spark of passion to her downtrodden life. She finds that something in a romance with a black sailor, but is left adrift and in trouble when he is called away and she finds herself pregnant. Fiercely independent, Jo makes the decision to leave school and keep her baby. After her mother’s unceremonious departure (car salesman in tow), Jo finds a friend – and a surrogate parent for her child – in an unconventional gay art student by the name of Geoff, but their shaky security can only last so long. The play churns with the ugly undertones of prejudice, rearing its head in areas of race, gender, class and sexuality. It is unarguably a socially significant story, and a story of the 50s when it was written – but at its heart this is a family story (albeit a fairly dysfunctional one) and it is rich in themes that will always resonate with its audience. It is one thing, however, to brand a play ‘timeless’ and another to make it fresh and new for the world of the modern audience. Nonetheless, it is a challenge producers eagerly take on time and time again. Yes, some scripts

Interview: Conori Bell-Bhuiyan

are potent enough to breach centuries, but it takes a good director and the right cast to bring a flavour of originality to each revival. Sometimes this takes a bit of tweaking… Take Anya Reiss and Ben Kidd’s new version of Frank Wedekind’s 1906 Spring Awakening (recently leaving the Liverpool Playhouse to commence a cross-country tour), written so many years ago and yet frighteningly relevant. The divisive and definitive play has much in common with Delaney’s – both causing a stir upon release, sparking riots with their no-holds-barred scrutiny of the teenage experience and provocative examination of sexual discovery. Yet, like A Taste of Honey, it manages to be both dark and moving and incredibly witty at the same time. With a dynamic young cast and carefully re-worked and re-written by Reiss (thus fitting seamlessly into the modern age), the surface of the play may have been polished, but the central question – are young people shaped by a prior generation that doesn’t understand them? – remains the same, and just as poignant and powerful. A Taste of Honey, on the other hand, needs no rewrite to catapult it into the 21st century – its youthful touch will be provided, as it originally was, by its feisty lead and the talented young actress who brings her to life. Rebecca Ryan is best known for her parts in TV dramas such as Shameless and The State of Play but a well-timed move to the stage has enhanced her reputation as a promising name. Well acquainted with Jo, having previously tackled the character in Edinburgh, Ryan is notably excited to take on the role again. She describes Jo as a character who is as exciting to play as she is challenging: “She goes up and down and up and down. One minute she’s happy and she great, and the next minute she’s angry. That’s really exciting for me

to play – to get those moments when, within a line, she’s goes from being really happy to really frustrated. It’s a challenge in itself to try and get those moments right.”

“It’s got everything that a great play should have. It’s gritty, it’s funny, it’s tender” Rebecca Ryan

Just like Jo (and Shelagh Delaney herself, who was only 19 years old when she wrote the play) Rebecca Ryan is a native of Manchester. It’s through casting young, vibrant and exciting actors like her that directors get the opportunity to give scripts like A Taste of Honey a new lease of life and there is little doubt that Ryan’s version of Jo will be one the more youthful audiences of Manchester will come to know and love. Ryan is quick to agree that the script itself is deserving of its longevity in the spotlight. “It is always relevant,” she says. “It is one of those plays that is always there… it’s got everything that a great play should have. It’s gritty, it’s funny, it’s tender – it’s got all of those different elements in it.” She continues by musing that the themes on prejudice and isolation aren’t as far in the past as many of us would like to think – not just the homophobia and racism expressed by characters

in the play, but the circumstances of its heroine. Despite how desperately she clings to her independence, the circumstances of Jo’s life are so far out of her control that no matter which way she turns, disaster seems inevitable. Her harsh and deflecting wit may not make her the sweetest, most likeable character around, but her snippy-ness is justifiable and her determination, however misplaced, shows a strength that hides a vulnerable fragility. Ryan, with her own determination and fresh vitality, is a fitting choice to bring Delaney’s multifaceted, imperfect, yet utterly compelling protagonist to life. So what is the secret ingredient that makes these plays stick in our minds – and in our theatres? What is the key to writing a play that will last? Of course, the real answer to that is ‘who knows?’ We’ll never really understand why some plays come to stay and some get lost in the mists of time, but both Spring Awakening and A Taste of Honey have two things in common that may have contributed to their staying power: youth and taboos. Two things that go together pretty well, when you think about it. Admittedly, taboos diminish over time, and A Taste of Honey may not seems quite as confrontational now as it did when Delaney first penned it, but the struggles against inequality, racism and discrimination are by no means lost in modern society. The struggles young people face when finding their own way in the world are timeless and universally relatable, and characters like Rebecca Ryan’s sharp-tongued, sharp-witted Jo speak volumes to anyone who is – or has the slightest memory of ever having been – a teenager. A Taste of Honey runs 10-14 Jun at Salford’s Lowry. Tickets start at £18 www.thelowry.com

A Taste of Honey

June 2014

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“Howay” (that’s Geordie for, “Come and join us”)

For a city break decked with a roster of top-notch culture, gigs and performances, visit NewcastleGateshead. Find out what’s happening and plan your city break at

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The Groovy People With Africa Oyé, the UK’s biggest free celebration of African music, returning to its home in Sefton Park this month, we sat down with new festival director Paul Duhaney to find out what makes this event so special

Photo: David Howarth

Interview: Jon Davies

ike many port towns, Liverpool has a rich history of cultural exchange and diaspora. It was the location of the UK’s first Chinatown and has one of the country’s oldest African communities, and both have made and still make a huge mark on the make-up of the city. While the population of African Liverpudlians has dwindled, the culture has not only survived but since 1992 it has thrived thanks to one of the Northwest’s biggest festivals, Africa Oyé. Founded by Kenny Murray, Oyé began as a series of festivals around various parks and large spaces including Birkenhead Park (where it was hosted alongside a balloon festival), the Anglican Cathedral, and Concert Square, before settling as an annual weekender at Sefton Park. Regardless of age, ethnicity or class, Africa Oyé attracts a huge following in and beyond Liverpool for its great party atmosphere and eclectic range of music on show. Paul Duhaney, who has worked at the festival for 15 years and has taken over from Murray as lead organiser, has seen Oyé go from strength to strength in each year he has taken part. “Realising that people in Liverpool were really tuned in to what we do, we saw Oyé grow from a couple of hundred people to, up until the last year, thousands. You can see how much African music and the festival has grown in that time; people are now a lot more receptive to all types of music.” For many communities in Liverpool, Africa Oyé is one of the few music events in mainstream consciousness, along with Liverpool International Music Festival, at which they feel welcome. Oyé is one of the city’s biggest summer events, but unlike other major festivals on the musical calendar, it isn’t built around students with money to burn. Duhaney takes massive pleasure in seeing not just black people, but “Asian, white, rich, poor... just the whole ethnicity and social make-up of the audience is what we’re about,” and credits this to the fact that the team has managed to keep the whole festival free. The idea of free goes beyond the sense of not paying for a ticket; it has to do with the whole environment of the festival. Free of being closed into a park where you can’t drop in and out, and free of having to pay over the odds for food and drink, Oyé feels it’s vital that there are no reasons why you can’t come along. “People who might not go out for a whole year can

June 2014

come here with their own food and have a picnic, which surely has a benefit. The whole point is bringing together those who can’t splash out and those who have money, and they can both come and have a great time.” And that’s exactly what you see, not just the usual free public festival clientele of families, but also students staying over the summer, musicians and regular culture goers and teenagers – something that Oyé originally struggled with.

“Realising that people in Liverpool were really tuned in to what we do, we saw Oyé grow from a couple of hundred people to thousands”

story: it’s easily one of the most recognisable festivals in the UK, and a vital festival in the world music circuit globally. Its success is not only down to the quality of the music and the festival, but also to the tolerance and community spirit of people of the UK, and Liverpool in particular: “In contrast to Los Angeles,” says Duhaney, “where there are many languages spoken and none of them mix, [here] you can have all these ethnic minorities living next to each other and getting along. That’s why this country is so unique.” Augmented by Liverpool’s famed musical heritage, Africa Oyé is one of the biggest destinations for African musicians coming to Western audiences. Duhaney is keen to express his gratitude towards his predecessor – without Kenny Murray, the summers in Liverpool wouldn’t have been quite as colourful these past 22 years. The popularity of Africa Oyé seems to know no bounds: it has plans to tour other festivals as a stage in itself, and is looking to host regular events throughout the year, such as an African House night, which harks back to Duhaney’s DJing roots. With interest in African music no more fervent than it is now, the Northwest would no doubt welcome more of Oyé’s sunshine vibes. Africa Oyé takes place 21-22 Jun at Sefton Park, Liverpool www.africaoye.com

Joe Driscoll & Sekou Kouyate

Paul Duhaney

Duhaney credits this diverse crowd not just to the fact that Oyé and LIMF are free, but that they are also recognised in the UK music community as major festivals: “I don’t think any city [in the UK] can boast two free festivals of that size and quality… and there’s a lot to be said about that.” The pedigree of Africa Oyé’s programming not only benefits its own reputation but that of Liverpool, especially the surrounding Aigburth and Toxteth areas. The festival is proud of its accessibility, and that feeds into the economic structure of places like Lark Lane, whose businesses, including restaurants, shops and accommodation spaces, are, according to Duhaney, “on fire that weekend – all the businesses are rubbing their hands when Oyé comes round.” The festival also benefits the local stalls that set up inside the festival, the likes of which you won’t see at

MUSIC

Osibisa at Africa Oyé 2013

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other, more corporate-focused events. Of course, Africa Oyé would not be the success it is now without the quality of music that Duhaney and his team programme. It’s taken time but the festival has had a long history of finding breaking acts from across the world, as well as bringing in big global musicians and reggae artists that pull in both the mainstream and the existing local African community from Toxteth. Along with Finley Quaye, there are some big names in African diaspora music this year, as well as a handful of hot tips, including Cuban fusion nine-piece Wara, fronted by not one but three exceptionally talented female singers, and high-energy band HAJAmadagascar & The Groovy People, who blend dance music with a myriad of Malagasy styles. On top of that Oyé also includes the Damon Albarn-affiliated Jupiter & Okwess International, and the Trenchtown stage, which intends to host the DJ and dub-inspired culture of modern African music. Ultimately Africa Oyé does not seek to have a singular headline act, but rather a whole day of top quality acts that works perfectly for the relaxed atmosphere of the festival, allowing the audience to dip in and out naturally instead of there being an onrush to just see one performance, as is the custom at most festivals. From its humble roots in 1992 to the present, Africa Oyé has been a genuine success


Embrace the Strange Rick Redbeard and Duncan Marquiss talk up the new Phantom Band record, and take the time to dispel a few urban myths about their true identities

“R

ick can be quite hard to get a hold of,” is the apologetic response from the Phantom Band’s record label as The Skinny struggles to pin down singer Rick Anthony (aka Rick Redbeard) and guitarist Duncan Marquiss. The band is preparing to release its third long-player, Strange Friend, an album that’s been more than three years in the works. Most of the band hold down ‘proper’ jobs and pursue a dazzling array of side projects. He needn’t apologise: these are busy guys. We eventually track Rick down to Inverness, where he’s preparing to kick off a mini-tour of the Highlands and Islands with Adam Stafford and Yusuf Azak, for Edinburgh imprint Gerry Loves Records. Things have gotten off to an inauspicious start. “We had fairly catastrophic car trouble,” he says with a nervous laugh, while ordering some fish and chips. “About 30 miles from Inverness, going 60 miles an hour, the fucking front wheel burst, we skidded along the road. If that had gone the whole wheel would’ve come off. Fucking pretty hairy.” He’s on a brief hiatus from Strange Friendrelated affairs to play tracks from last year’s fantastic solo debut No Selfish Heart and admits that it’ll be slightly peculiar to be on his own again. “We’ve been so geared up for the Phantoms stuff, rehearsing and talking about what we’re doing for the Strange Friend record. Suddenly I’m back on my own with my guitar again, trying to relearn my songs. I’m always doing my own stuff in the background, writing and playing. It might be weird... yeah it seems like a slightly strange diversion to take at this point. But the opportunity to come up to Shetland and play some tunes was a pretty good one.” Drummer Iain Stewart is originally from Orkney but, as we talk, Anthony is about to pop his Scottish island cherry. Later in the year, he’ll take his troupe back to the Hebridian Isle of Eigg for Lost Map Records’ Howlin’ Fling festival, and he’s anticipating a different sort of response than your average Edinburgh, Glasgow or London show. The first Phantom Band show in Inverness was, he recalls, “fantastic, wild” and “pretty tasty.” One over zealous fan joined the band on stage to sing (or more accurately scream) along to Crocodile. “Everyone was just kind of going along with it,” he says. “In the bigger cities, you get people waiting to see if it’s okay to enjoy themselves. Often people that aren’t in the big cities don’t really give a shit.” Crocodile, incidentally, is an instrumental track. When we get through to Marquiss he’s also keen to discuss live shows. Both men are excited to see how the excellent Strange Friend evolves on the stage. “We kind of improvise when we’re recording,” he says. “The way it works out, there might be a sound on the record that doesn’t ever get repeated in the live show. In some ways it’s a shame if it’s really good, but it also makes it more interesting.” Second album The Wants was wonderfully terrifying, moody and uncompromising. By comparison, Strange Friend is much less dark (it would be wrong to call it ‘light’); more airy. Some of the krautish elements have been waylaid, replaced with more straightforward melodies and lyrics with less opacity. “Perhaps it is less dark,” offers Marquiss. “I think the songs on the new album are parts of tracks we’ve been working on for a long period, that’s what the band do. On The Wants, a lot of the material was a bit more aggressive. The Wants was written in a studio as we were recording it. It was a collage work. There’s a bit of that with Strange Friend, but it’s also the product of us playing together. We were playing

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live together a lot, so playing while we were writing. Maybe that’s given it a bit more life, made it more organic.” While nobody marched into the studio announcing they wanted to make a pop record, there was a feeling that having toured The Wants extensively, the band wanted to do something different. Anthony says: “The second record we came away after playing live and realised a lot of the tracks had a darker feel, which is only one aspect of what we do. We never thought of ourselves as a gloomy band. I think subconsciously when we were writing this stuff there were tracks that we previously wouldn’t have pursued, because they were too light. We decided to tackle those and I think this one is my favourite record. There’s a lot more going on in terms of mood and atmosphere. The first record had a lot of tracks that are slightly lighter, slightly more upbeat. It’s okay to write music that’s fun and we were trying to do that a bit more on this record, but everything we do is subconscious.” Whether or not Strange Friend becomes the band’s ‘breakthrough record’ remains to be seen, but the ingredients required to trouble the mainstream consciousness are all there. Writing this in spring, it is no great leap to envisage the album popping up in end of year lists by the time we complete this lap of the sun, as was the case with the two that preceded it. The media coverage the band currently receive paints them in an interesting light. Words like ‘alchemy’, ‘druids’ and ‘sorcery’ are often used to describe their genre-bending style and sound. Anyone would think a Phantoms recording session plays out like an episode of the Masked Magician, with added acid. “If only that were true,” laughs Anthony. “It’s weird, people find things they can write about us. None of us have a serious drug habit, we’re possibly not the most interesting around so they think: ‘What can we use to spice up the Phantom Band? Let’s pretend they’re all wizards… they’re all druids and rehearse in a fucking stone circle.’ At the start a lot of people were obsessed that we were this genre-meshing beat act, putting everything in a big cauldron and conjuring up this big sound. Maybe our writing was like that but we’d

Interview: Finbarr Bermingham Photography: Eoin Carey

never thought about it like that at all. We’d always played music that was natural to us and people were like ‘wow this is really interesting, so different.’ We thought: ‘Is it really?’ We don’t think it is. We don’t really get where that all comes from. And we’re definitely not druids.”

“We’re possibly not the most interesting around so they think: ‘What can we use to spice up the Phantom Band? Let’s pretend they’re all wizards’” Rick Anthony

Perhaps the band’s dynamism is simply a result of having a range of very different personalities on board, each with their own tastes and ideas on how things should sound. Anthony and Marquiss are markedly different. Both are genial, but conversation is more forthcoming from the frontman. You get the impression that everything Marquiss says is carefully considered and reasoned, Anthony slightly more spontaneous. Both have individual pursuits away from the band, but seem to view their relationship between the Phantoms and their own work very differently. Atacama, perhaps the standout track on the new album, is the one which closest reflects Anthony’s solo work. Despite this, he’s adamant that the two pursuits are inherently different

entities: “I don’t put the two things together at all, I keep them very separate. Something like Atacama, the body was written by me and Duncan and we played it and everyone joined in with their parts. The actual decision to do the track wasn’t me saying: ‘Let’s do an acoustic track.’ We all have our say on what we thinks works in terms of the material we have. That was a late one. It wasn’t a unanimous thing to put on the record. It was one I liked and thought it worked on the record. I think it’s something different sonically, it’s important to have different moods, atmospheres and stuff going on. That track gives you a bit of space. When you’ve got a lot of quite dense material it’s good to have a bit of space.” Marquiss, conversely, is more open to exploring the links between his work as a visual artist and the music he helps create with the Phantom Band. The Scottish Arts Council website carries this quote about Hello - an image sketched by Marquiss in colouring pencil and graphite: ‘There is a threatening but seductive quality to Hello, a classic trope of horror, sci-fi and fairytale narratives.’ It’s a line that could easily have been penned about the Phantom Band’s last record. “It’s interesting,” he broods. “I suppose it’s inevitable that there’ll be some sort of crossover, but I would imagine it’s all unintentional, all subconscious.” His work with the band requires some level of diplomacy: each member has equal say on how things end up sounding. With his art, closure is much easier to attain. It’s just him. “If we didn’t have deadlines, I think the band could end up recording forever,” he says. But where The Wants was thrashed out in a studio and carries that sense of urgency and pugnaciousness with it, Strange Friend has a more natural arc and plenty of room to breathe. The time away appears to have done the Phantom Band good. But, as anyone who has heard the new record will no doubt agree, it’s fantastic to have them back. Strange Friend is released 2 Jun via Chemikal Underground. Playing The Deaf Institute, Manchester, 5 Jun www.phantomband.co.uk

The Phantom Band

MUSIC

THE SKINNY


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June 2014

23


Letting It Roll Before the release of a career-spanning best of album, Nightmares on Wax reflects on his Silver Jubilee

Interview: Daniel Jones

E

ight years ago, a boat carrying George Evelyn, his wife Amanda and all their belongings pulled into an Ibizan port to begin the latest phase of the Nightmares on Wax odyssey. “It was weird,” Evelyn remembers, calling from his renovated farmhouse on the island. “The sun was beating down on the boat as we came in, there was an announcement on the tannoy and then this song started pumping out. It turned out to be one of mine! Morse, off Carboot Soul – not even a single. Right then I knew it was meant to be. I was home, and it didn’t feel like I’d left anywhere.” For somebody who deals primarily in positive vibrations, Evelyn saw the sun-kissed beaches and pine-clad hills of the White Isle as the idyllic backdrop for his musical vocation. Having frequented the island on numerous occasions as a youth, he also saw a niche for feel-good downtempo grooves, picking up where Balearic architects like José Padilla had left off the previous decade. Thus Evelyn’s clubnight Wax Da Jam was born back in 2009, and this year marks the fifth season of what locals quickly came to term as ‘the people’s party’. “When I arrived, I was amazed at what wasn’t here,” he admits. “I didn’t understand it: the sun’s out in full force, so why isn’t this music being played? It was pretty much a blank canvas for me. We started out in a restaurant called Aura, which was totally illegal because it didn’t have a license and we couldn’t advertise at all. Word of mouth got the name around and we eventually had guys like DJ Shadow, Roots Manuva and Nickodemus down in the early days. The concept was to be able to DJ with loops, and have scope to improvise with samples live.” You can imagine that, as Warp’s longest serving producer, Evelyn has been chopping up records for quite a long time. His forthcoming N.O.W. IS THE TIME compilation marks 25 years in the game; but that’s not quite the full picture. The story of Nightmares on Wax actually begins five years prior to 1989’s Let It Roll, in the midst of Yorkshire’s mid-80s B-boy scene. As part of Bradford’s Soul City Rockers, Evelyn first learned to scratch with a little help from a fellow crew member – Kevin ‘Boy Wonder’ Harper. “At that point I was already sampling too,” Evelyn adds, “But I didn’t know that’s what it was called. I’d record an intro of a track on the tape deck, then record snippets from another track to make a megamix. Eventually, a friend of mine introduced me to this landscape gardener called John Halmon, who had two turntables, a double cassette deck, and a reel-to-reel! We started mixing together and that turned me on to a lot of other styles of music. One scenario was that he introduced me to using dialogue from films, soundtracks and special effects. I was about 15 at the time and didn’t know anything about catalogues and all that. “We ended up with this amalgamation of weirdly different styles. John turned round one day and said ‘This stuff sounds like your worst nightmare,’ to which I said ‘Yeah, it’s like a nightmare on wax!’ After debating whether it sounded too negative or not, we decided it was a good representation of our wildest dreams on vinyl – and it stuck. After a year or so, John decided to pack it in, so I joined a DJ collective with Kevin [Harper] called Unit Three. There were actually four of us, but whatever.” After finding himself homeless at the age of 16, Evelyn moved into a hostel with Kevin and their mates and started charging people into parties on the weekend. From the end of ’86 to the end of ’88, the pair were playing

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Nightmares on Wax

all around Yorkshire, running a night called Downbeat and developing a thirst for making their own tunes. “I managed to convince my mum to lend us the money for a Fostex 4-track, a Casio SK-1 – which had about 1.6 seconds sampling time – and a knocked-off Roland SH-101. The Roland changed everything.”

“It’s what I’ve been trying to say all along” George Evelyn

With their slew of new gear, Evelyn and Harper started putting together a few demos, and eventually decided to sample Big Daddy Kane’s Set It Off on their track Let It Roll. “I remember the first time we played it at Downbeat: the place went ballistic. Kevin and I were kneeling down behind the decks because we couldn’t stop laughing. We felt excited, nervous, just every emotion rushing through our bodies. That was the first experience of having… that! We must’ve rewound the track about eight times,” he chuckles. Despite the positive crowd reactions, and shopping around to a whole host of UK imprints, the pair failed to secure an initial deal. This led Evelyn and Harper on a quest to New York to buy music, buy trainers and get a record deal. “We didn’t get the latter,” Evelyn explains. “So, on the way back, we decided to put it out ourselves. I borrowed £400 off my brother and pressed 2000

copies of the record. We hired a car, borrowed a driver’s license from my mate and started pitching to record stores up and down the country. We ended up selling the 2000 copies in two weeks. That was July ’89.” Follow-up single Dextrous caught the attention of Warp founder Steve Beckett, who got in touch a few months later to ask if they wanted to remix the track for his fledgling label. By the end of the year, Dextrous had gone to number 75 in the charts, and the pair had well and truly infiltrated the nation’s musical bloodstream. “Rave culture was kicking off at that point too,” Evelyn recalls. “It was a social revolution. I remember going down the M62 to this warehouse rave in Blackburn and there was three cop cars trying to block all the lanes to slow down the convoy. There was a copper in the street trying to stop cars going past and people were just bombing past – they couldn’t give a shit. I remember looking out the back window at the copper and thinking, ‘This is what the 60s must’ve been like!’ There was a detachment from the system, which forced people to look within themselves. I still believe that’s why some of the most profound pieces of music can come out of the bleakest situations.” Time has since moved on from those halcyon days, but that sense of fearlessness and experimentation has remained fixed in the Nightmares on Wax psyche. Seven albums later and Evelyn has pushed the envelope at every turn, never content to rest on his laurels or to give in to the easy option of churning out biennial imitations of Smoker’s Delight. This is what makes the process of putting together a concise assessment of the entire N.O.W. journey a very tough challenge. “There are so many ways to approach a best

CLUBS

of,” explains Evelyn. “You can go chronologically, but you soon realise that doesn’t work. You have to think about what each album represents, and the different stages of the journey. Each one has its own stamp, and the presence of one album can’t be more prominent than another. “It’s been very, very emotional. There are certain tracks I listen back to now and, because I’m in such a different mental state to when I made it, it sounds completely different to me. It’s amazing having that detachment from a piece of music you’ve made because you start to hear it from an objective point of view – in a good way. You care less about being egotistical about your own stuff, and you start to fully acknowledge what you’ve created. I really dig stuff now that ten years ago I thought wasn’t up to scratch at all.” For Evelyn, the key lies in “getting out of your own way.” The deeper you go into your own productions, the more observant you become, and the more questions you introduce in analysis, which allows doubt and fear to come into the equation. “My last LP, Feelin’ Good, wasn’t about what I thought, or how loud the hi-hats were; it was about what I felt. It’s what I’ve been trying to say all along, my expression of happiness. This journey has taken me everywhere, and I’ve been off the beaten track so many times out of curiosity, just to ask ‘What’s down there?’ It feels like I’ve come full circle, back to the frame of mind where I started out. Ibiza has helped me to unravel, so now I can say things, musically, without having to search for my voice – and I know it’s the truth that’s coming through.” N.O.W. IS THE TIME is out 16 Jun via Warp. Playing Beacons Festival, Skipton, 7-10 Aug www.nightmaresonwax.com

THE SKINNY


All the Mewes That’s Fit to Print As Jay and Silent Bob (Jason Mewes and Kevin Smith) embark on a tour of the UK, we catch up with the former to discuss chat-up lines, his long-lasting friendship with Smith, and people crapping their pants

J

ason Mewes is recalling how he came to know his very good buddy, cult director Kevin Smith – Silent Bob to his mouthy Jay. “Kevin says that I would come over all the time and just kinda force myself on him.” He pauses to check himself, laughing, “Not on top of him! I would just wanna hang out with him!” Although they both attended the same New Jersey high school, they only got to know each other once Smith, who was four years ahead of Mewes, had left. “After Kevin graduated he started working at the local community centre. I used to go there as a 13/14-year-old and that’s when I started to get to talk to him, ’cause he used to sit and read comics and I used to harass him about comic books and ask him for free ones. He’d give me his old ones.” Five years of friendship later, in 1994, Smith recruited Mewes as part of his ensemble cast of mates for his very low-budget debut feature, Clerks. The black-and-white film was shot at the Quick Stop convenience store where Smith worked, and focused on a day in the life of the store’s fictional clerk Dante (based on Smith) and Randal who works in the video store next door, plus a random collection of friends and oddballs who drift in and out. The dialogue is filthy, frank

Interview: Marissa Burgess

and questioning. It went on to be picked up and distributed by Miramax, win numerous awards and garner acclaim from critics. Smith continued to make films that many cite as being definite cult classics – the likes of Mallrats, Chasing Amy, Dogma, as well as Clerks II. That first film also marked the beginning of Jay and Silent Bob, two very small-time drug dealers who hang out together – the former streetwise and full of bad chat-up lines and the latter largely silent but for occasional words that contain a surprising amount of worldly wisdom. Fast forward 20 years and they’re still working together, and not just on films (though Clerks III is apparently imminent). Mewes produces a lot of Smith’s work and there’s a regular podcast, Jay and Silent Bob Get Old, that they record live. It’s billed as an ‘intervention’ for Mewes, who has been clean from his openly-spoken-about heroin addiction for almost four years now. The UK tour they are about to embark on is a mixture of that podcast (as well as, on some dates, the Hollywood Babble-On podcast, which Smith records live with actor and radio host Ralph Garman), a Q&A and a screening of the latest Jay and Silent Bob animated outing, Jay and Silent Bob’s Super Groovy Cartoon Movie,

aren’t laughing then you’ve got to be... ‘Whoa, what about these doughnuts!’ I don’t know, it seems a lot different. I thought about trying it because I think it’s very similar, it’s storytelling but it’s timing and jokes and all that too, so I haven’t done it but, maybe... I’ve been thinking about doing it, so we’ll see.” Though it was Smith who wrote the vast majority of Jay’s lines in the films, Mewes would provide ad libs and was more than just a slight inspiration for Jay. “When we did Clerks I was 18/19 – that’s how I used to act, exactly,” he confesses. “I didn’t have any filter, I used to say exactly stuff like that. I’d get yelled at, people would get upset. A lot of the stuff that would be said, me hanging out and dancing and saying, ‘what up’ this and ‘what up’ that, that’s stuff I had said over the years that Kevin had written down. ‘I’ll fuck anything that moves!’ I used to yell that out of the car window when we were driving. Just goofy and silly stuff.” So did you ever use any of those truly unsubtle chat-up lines? “Not really,” he laughs, “I definitely have joked around and said that, but they never work. I had my real obnoxious sort of forward lines that I used, but not so obscene! Not now because I’ve been married for years, but before I was able to master feeling out people that I could maybe be a little obnoxious with – but never what I did on film, that was just real messy. Jokingly I’ve said things like that but after I knew that things were already involved.” These days the nearly 40-year-old man talking on the phone is far more polite and respectful than Jay and his ‘pussy’ lovin’ ways, yet Jay’s timeline through Smith’s films does mirror Mewes’ own. “In Clerks II I had really just gone into rehab and got sober and so he made the character sober. He adjusted the persona to fit what’s going on in my life.”

which Mewes, as producer, is particularly pumped up about. “The whole process for me was awesome. I got to sit there and watch these guys – Neil Gaiman, Ralph Garman, Eliza Dushku, Stan Lee – do their thing in a sound booth and give the script character, elevate it with their voices. Then Steve Stark, who animated and directed, he’s gonna take the voices, mannerisms, the eyes, mouth and arm movements of them and animate them.” The podcast meanwhile may well be a chatty conversation between Mewes and his old mate, but it will see some preparatory notes being scribbled as well as a certain amount of research, as Mewes always likes to take in the place he’s gigging in for a few days beforehand. “I like to go do some stuff and see things and hang out. Usually something will happen whether it be a guy crap his pants on the street – something usually happens.” So given that there’s a freewheeling nature to the podcasts and that there must be a readymade Jay fan base out there, has Mewes ever considered stand-up? Turns out he has at least considered it: “Stand-up seems to be like you have to be on, it’s all you by yourself and if people

“When we did Clerks I was eighteen, nineteen – I didn’t have any filter”

Jason Mewes

June 2014

COMEDY

Photo: Allan Amato

Jason Mewes

You’ll no doubt get the opportunity to meet the real Mewes and see for yourselves if you go to the show, as he always pops out front afterwards. “I go out and sign stuff and say what’s up and take pictures and hang out as long as I can, it’s just interesting. [In the UK] I love the accent of course – I try to imitate it but I’m horrible at imitating accents. I always sound half Australian and whatever, Cockney stuff all mixed in. Last time [we did a show over here] a lot of people hadn’t listened to the podcast but they heard Jason and Kevin Smith, Jay and Bob, are coming to whatever city it was and it sold out within a week. That to me is awesome and flattering. You guys are a ten-hour flight and I’m like, ‘Wow, these guys want to see us!’” It’s not a bad job is it? “Not at all, not at all,” he agrees, with another one of those good-natured laughs. Jay & Silent Bob’s Super Groovy Cartoon Movie, O2 Apollo, Manchester, 3 Jul

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ARTIST: TYLER JORDAN | CAPTURED BY: TYLER JORDAN

Wear it. Mount it. Love it.™ GoPro App

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THE SKINNY SPORTS SUPPLEMENT

Editor: Anna Tully

Take to the Water With access to the Lakes and the coast, the Northwest offers a range of opportunities for water babies to upgrade from their weekly sesh at the indoor pool. Local instructors introduce us to open water swimming, surf, sail, canoe and more

G

etting involved in some sort of watersport activity probably isn’t a thought that frequently crosses the mind of many city dwellers – lest said city dweller be holidaying on some unspoilt island in the Mediterranean, or, let’s be realistic, Anglesey. But our proximity to both sea (Irish) and lake (Windermere) makes donning our swimming caps and diving into the nearest open water an accessible pastime. (Don’t worry: for most of the following, a rubber hat is not actually necessary.) Perhaps the most ‘entry-level’ activity of the lot (on first sight, anyway), open water swimming offers an obvious ‘in’ to those who are already keen pool swimmers. In fact, it’s the reason why young swimmer Hazel Killingbeck began. “I was deciding whether I wanted to quit pool competitions because I was not nearly getting anywhere sprinting, and I fell in love with open water swimming,” she says. The next week, she found herself completing a one-mile open water swim over in Salford Quays. Killingbeck recommends testing the waters over at Liverpool Docks: “They’re great because the salt water helps you to get used to the sea and even has baby jellyfish!” she exclaims. There’s a Liverpool Open Water Society based at the Docks, or, for those closer to Manchester, she wholeheartedly recommends checking out USWIM Openwater – a swimming group with sessions at Salford Quays and Boundary Water Park, Cheshire. “USWIM has an incredible vibe and is great for beginners or people wanting good training,” she says. In the meantime, Killingbeck has had to ‘make do’ with her local environs, as she awaits

June 2014

her 16th birthday before she can legally swim the English Channel. “I completed my two-way Windermere swim last August,” she explains. “This was 21 miles and considered a harder swim than the English Channel itself. I completed mine in 11 hours and I could not be any happier with that swim.” Events like the Epic Lakes Swim Series, in Ullswater, provide a range of lengths, both for those just starting out and for anyone ready to indulge in a spot of Ironman triathlon training.

“You don’t have to be particularly fit to enjoy a day out on the water” Claire Weller

For those among us who are tempted bythe water, but aren’t quite ready to dive straight into such chilling temperatures, there are many more activities on offer. The Royal Yachting Association (RYA) proves a good starting point for those looking to learn a little more about sailing or windsurfing, providing information on local clubs and training courses. Jonny Cormack, an instructor at Windermere Outdoor Adventure Centre, specialises in working with beginners and thinks the lake itself is a great

place for starting out: “Even though it’s the biggest lake in England, it’s a good spot for learning, particularly because it has many sheltered areas for beginners,” he says. Cormack notes that while significant numbers of people start out windsurfing, the activity can also offer a steady progression from sailing, once you’ve found your balance in the water: “Windsurfing can get quite extreme quite quickly, once you’ve got the experience behind you. You’ve got to embrace getting wet as you’ll be in the water a lot more!” Cormack’s colleague, Neil Mulhall, a paddlesports instructor, also notes that there’s been an increase in interest in recent years, particularly at Windermere: “Since they put the speedboat ban in, there’s been a lot more interest in paddleboard. It’s a lot safer for people to get out on the Lake.” If the idea of all this activity is starting to feel a little bit too much like, well, sport, rest assured: you can choose to take it a little easier by stepping foot into a canoe. Claire Weller, owner of Keswick Canoe and Bushcraft, says that canoeing is “a great sport for people of any age, which I think adds to its appeal. You don’t have to be particularly fit to enjoy a day out on the water. Simply drifting around in a canoe and exploring the quiet areas of a lake or visiting an island is great fun, whether you’re five or 85.” Mulhall agrees: “It’s just a different way of looking at nature and exploring areas you wouldn’t be able to reach on foot.” Weller is also keen to stress the versatile nature of watersports as a whole. “There are of course the high-profile disciplines of white water slalom and sprint or marathon racing, which are

SPORTS SUPPLEMENT

great fun to both participate in or as a spectator, but there is also canoe touring, whitewater paddling, sailing, sea kayaking, canoe polo and expedition canoeing, which is my particular favourite.” Expedition canoeing goes back to basics; the canoe’s original intended purpose was for long-distance journeys across water, and centres like Weller’s offer courses or weekends away that allow attendees to learn more about nature and the environment, as well as basic bushcraft skills, including fire lighting and knot tying – kind of like a grown-up version of Scouts. So are you keen to get your feet off dry land yet? Sound advice from the instructors encourages those interested to join a local club in the sport of their choice, to try out taster sessions. Debdale Outdoor Centre in east Manchester offers taster sessions in most watersports, as does Liverpool Watersports Centre on Queens Dock. If your last experience of being anywhere near water was gaining your five metres, fear not – as Mulhall informs us, “It’s not a prerequisite to be a good swimmer. You just need to feel comfortable being in the water.” Liverpool Open Water Society: liverpoolopenwater.org.uk USWIM: uswimopenwater.com Epic Lakes Swim Series: epicevents.co.uk/open-water-swims Royal Yachting Association: rya.org.uk Windermere Outdoor Adventure Centre: facebook.com/WindermereOutdoorAdventureCentre Keswick Canoe and Bushcraft: keswickcanoeandbushcraft.co.uk Debdale Outdoor Centre: manchester.gov.uk Liverpool Watersports Centre: liverpoolwatersports.org.uk

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On Yer Bike

Want to take your cycle to work up a notch? You’re in luck: the Northwest’s terrain is ideal for bikers both seasoned and beginner hether you mingle in cycling circles or not, it’s hard to ignore that 2014 is a big year for the sport: as the Tour de France takes over our Northern towns, bicycle cafés are cropping up in cities, and there are even festivals positioning the beautiful bike as their raison d’etre. So what’s propelled the growth of interest, and how do we make the move to mountain biking extraordinaire? Eliza-Lee Farrington, of bicycle café MaryMary in Liverpool, believes the increase in cyclists on the road in recent years is a response to the social climate: “People needed to be smarter with their money,” she comments. “It’s become necessary.” The cafe opened earlier this year and Farrington sees its presence as part of the movement to grow cycling in Liverpool: “Working alongside local communities we want to make the public/motorists aware of cycling,” she says, and cites other “big cycling cities” such as Berlin, London and Amsterdam as inspiration. Andy Tucker from BikeRight! similarly sees Europe as inspiration: “While the UK government has started to invest more heavily in cycling and cycling infrastructure it’s a drop in the ocean to what other European governments invest.” According to British Cycling, the national governing body for cycling, countries like the Netherlands invest the equivalent of £23 per person into the activity, while ‘England outside the capital still spends less than £2 per head.’ Schemes like BikeRight! – partially funded by local councils – with centres in Manchester, Merseyside and Warrington go some way towards addressing this imbalance and have helped nearly 4000 people over four years get back on their bikes. Tucker is keen to stress, however, that if

you’re to make the transition to competitive racing, you’ll have work ahead of you: “Road racing is about endurance, muscle memory and conditioning, whereas mountain biking requires these plus strength, fast reactions and technical skills to help overcome trail obstacles,” he says.

“The freedom you can get combined with the exercise is unrivalled” James Dillon

A middle ground is perhaps presented in the inaugural L’Eroica Britannia, a ‘vintage cycle and lifestyle festival’ taking place 20-22 June across the Peak District. The festival, founded in Italy, offers attendees a choice of three routes, ranging between 30 and 100 miles. Tim Hubbard, one of the organisers, sees it as an opportunity “to tell... the incredible stories of British cycling that many may not know.” But you don’t have to rely on new-wave festivals to experience our lush countryside by bike: in the Northwest we’re ideally placed to venture into the rocky highs of the Lake District. Will Lake, a regular mountain biker, moved from York to Hebden Bridge so that he could be closer to a better selection of biking trails: “The Pennines and Lake District both offer a great range of challenging terrain criss-crossed with natural trails

Photo: Forestry Commision Scotland

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offering stunning views,” he says. The Lakes can offer something for the more hardcore among us, though Lake warns that it might not be for everyone: “The high mountain passes make excellent trails, but you need to be able to navigate and be prepared for unpredictable weather and the chance of punctures or technical problems.” He notes that popular areas in this neck of the woods include the man-made trails at Grizedale and Whinlatter Forests, though his preference is to “ride natural trails on the big mountains, stringing together loops in areas like Helvellyn, Buttermere, Borrowdale and Grasmere. The Borrowdale Bash is a popular ‘classic’ route featuring rocky trails, big climbs and beautiful Lakeland scenery.” If the isolation of riding doesn’t appeal, there are plenty of sportives that offer the safety of your fellow cyclist. The Manchester 100 Bike Ride (31 August), leaving from the National Cycling Centre, takes you through either 100km or 100 miles of Cheshire countryside. James Dillon, past – and future – participant, loves the adventure the rides offer: “The freedom you can get combined with the exercise is unrivalled.”

If you’d prefer to take part in something a little more DIY, Dillon recommends a trip to Macclesfield via Poynton. (Liverpool-based readers might want to catch a train to Poynton, rather than cycle all the way!) “I’d say this is a must-do on most cyclists’ lists. It’s long, but a steady gradient so not too bad, and 50 miles per hour is no problem on the descent. The Climb from Alderley Edge Village up to the Wizard pub is another popular challenge too. There’s a side road leading on to this climb called Swiss Hill, which is a nasty little cobbled climb. This is very popular and seen as a real test with it being the closest you can get to the cobbled climbs of Flanders.” It would appear, then, that while we may look to our European neighbours for inspiration, here in the Northwest we can pedal smug in the knowledge that we’ve an enviable array of rides to choose from. marymary.cc bikeright.co.uk eroicabritannia.co.uk nationalcyclingcentre.com britishcycling.org.uk

Uphill Rush Running! Everyone who’s a convert raves about it – but how do you make that first giant leap for mankind and get yourself out the door?

P

erhaps I’d have been a little more enthused about running if I hadn’t insisted on wearing a ten-year-old pair of Dunlops to pound the treadmill. Fortunately, a few weeks ago, I discovered that my size four feet meant I could get away with a pair of kids’ trainers for less than 30 quid. While this has afforded me infinitely more joy when it comes to putting one foot in front of the other, I’ve still not braved the – whisper it – outside world. In an attempt to tempt myself outside the safe haven of my gloomy gym, I decided to seek advice from those with a little more experience. You can thank me when you’re sweating your bottom off running the High Peak Marathon. So, let’s get the hardest bit out of the way first: getting your feet out the front door. Marathon runner and Mind campaigner Ilona Burton, and running hobbyist Nicholas Rezzouk both agree. Though neither offers the magic solution as to how to conjure up that motivation, Burton recognises that, for her, “running for charity definitely helps with the motivation... To know that I’m raising money that will help others makes all the struggles worthwhile.” Of course, we can’t ignore the most compelling reason to run: it’s free! As Rezzouk says, “I started seeing this as a cheap and easy way to maintain a certain level of fitness, as well as [it] proving beneficial for my psyche.” Luckily for him,

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he says that “it must have helped that I grew up next door to a forest where it feels good to fill your lungs with clean air.” If it’s fresh air you’re after, then we’re ideally placed in the Northwest to participate in a spot of fell-running. Enthusiast Emma Pond started fell-running to embrace “the views, the freedom and the fresh air” – less so the “herding sheep or running from adders that you’ve accidentally disturbed.” While the latter may sound a little scary, Pond assures us that “the hills aren’t that bad – and it doesn’t have to be as extreme as the running magazines can make it out to be.” If you’re ready for the challenge, her key advice is to get a decent pair of snug shoes, and most importantly, “ease yourself in. I definitely had to slow down [when I first began]”. If you’re already a seasoned runner, Pond’s favourite route is worth a go: “try Win Hill from Ladybower Lake in the Peak District,” she says. “You get lovely views and you run through woods, on moorland and bag a ‘summit’ all in one go. The route I usually do here is only around 10km so it’s not too scary. While the hill at the start is practically un-runnable, the flat run along from the top is lovely – then it’s all downhill!” For those searching for that extra bit of inspiration, running blogger Sarah Crandon recommends turning to your fellow runner: “Things like @UKRunchat on Twitter [offer] a great running

SPORTS SUPPLEMENT

community where people often ask questions and support each other. Try running with a local group; [it] helps with the motivation, means you don’t have to think about a route, keeps you going when you want to stop and lets you meet up with other runners.” Sold yet? If you’re all for easing yourself in the fun way, try the Manchester Color Run (5 July), a 5k that showers its white-clothed participants with powdered colours and counts 60% of its participants as first-time 5k runners. If you’re already itching for something a little more hardcore, we recommend keeping your eyes peeled for next year’s Rock & Roll Marathon in Liverpool (14 June 2015) – endurance running with musical accompaniments. The Lakeland Trails also offer a varying distance of runs across the Lake District, and you can find a whole host of organised fell runs across the UK on fellrunner.org.uk. And me? I’m off to hunt out my white leggings from the late ‘90s... thecolorrun.co.uk/manchester Rock & Roll Marathon: uk.competitor.com/liverpool/eventdetails lakelandtrails.org fellrunner.org.uk

THE SKINNY


Let’s Get Physical

Gravity Check

Yoga and martial arts aren’t strictly sport, but if you’re looking to get fit they provide a solid base of deeper engagement with your own physical and mental wellbeing. And if bending, stretching and balancing appeals, take a look to the right...

As the National Centre for Circus Arts (formerly Circus Space) reiterates its dedication to the artform by way of name change, 2014 is shaping up to be a year in which we can become masters of balance

Photo: Joel Nilsson

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hile yoga may be centuries old, coming of age in the Western world during the heady highs of the 70s, it seems that the 21st century is where the ancient practice has really come into its own, in part due to popularisation through celebrity endorsement. Yoga serves many as a form of respite from high-pressure lives, with studies continuing to espouse the ever-positive effects of yoga on one’s wellbeing. Ancient Sanskrit texts view yoga as a form of meditation to reach either union with ultimate reality, or separation of spirit from matter. And while rushing off to a yoga class on a mid-week lunch break might not immediately provide one with a transcendence of spirit, it’s certainly a means of introduction for those who feel too short on time to otherwise practice. Matt Ryan began teaching yoga 15 years ago, and started his own series of ‘express’ yoga classes (lasting 45 minutes) in Manchester’s Northern Quarter earlier this year. He has seen an unexpectedly high level of interest, and partially attributes this to the current economic climate: “as people’s stress levels increase at work, so does an interest in yoga.” He notes that the classes have been a way to “break down the barriers when it comes to yoga. Providing short classes opens the practice up to a wider number of people... For many, it begins as a physical pursuit, but once they understand both the physical and mental benefits, it can become a lifestyle.” Growing numbers are being introduced to yoga as a means of improving physical health, and Clare Tunstall, a yoga teacher in south Manchester, has seen a number of referrals from doctors. Keeping true to its inclusive nature, Yoga Kurunta – aka ‘puppet yoga’ – expands the practice to those who are less physically able. “For example, if we had someone in the class who couldn’t do a head balance due to a neck injury,

June 2014

they could easily hang upside down in yoga ropes, so still benefiting from the inverted effects of the posture without placing weight on their neck,” she explains. While Tunstall recognises the positive outcomes of yoga for the physical body, she is keen to emphasise the duality of the activity: “While yoga gets a lot of publicity for its physical benefits, it is important to remember it’s only one aspect of yoga... Yoga and mindfulness go hand in hand. Mindfulness is the sense that we try to be in the present moment [and] yoga keeps us very much focussed on the present moment while we are focusing on the asanas (physical postures).”

“Yoga keeps us in the present moment while we are focusing on the physical postures” Clare Tunstall

Manjunaga – a yoga teacher and practising Buddhist in south Manchester – expands: “In Patanjali’s Yoga Sutra (one of the foundational philosophical texts on yoga), of the eight limbs of training that are offered, asana is only one limb. Patanjali places a lot more emphasis on using the body as a vehicle to support and explore meditative states of consciousness than he does on mastering an impressive back bend.” Chinese arts can offer similar, ‘mindful’

benefits to yoga. Steven Williams, a Crosbybased instructor, appreciates the different skills various martial arts are able to hone and refine. While tai chi is perhaps the most well-known in the West, Williams began practising the discipline as a result of an interest in the lesserknown zhan zhuang and Wing Chun, a form of kung fu: “I looked for something that would help with my zhan zhuang, a more internal art than Wing Chun, and so I started my study of tai chi,” he explains. “Wing Chun [as practised by Bruce Lee] taught me the importance of softness; zhan zhuang gave me the energy and focus; while tai chi linked a great many things together.” Williams emphasises that there are also many physical benefits to be gained from Chinese arts: “zhan zhuang is the one that I’ve found to be truly transformational. It ‘charges your batteries’ with profound benefits to health and activity. I’ve had students tell me that their lives have been transformed by relief from conditions as mundane as hayfever and hypertension to more difficult ones such as arthritis, depression, chronic fatigue and the recovery from old injuries.” Whether your reason for exploring non-traditional forms of exercise is to improve physical health or emotional well-being, these activities can encourage a break away from the daily grind. Manjunaga feels that yoga, in its entirety, can provide an alternative to modern-day distractions: “What needs addressing is this overemphasis on doing and constant activity,” he says. “I feel people should be encouraged to stop and learn to be with themselves; more a ‘state of being’ mode.” As yoga and Chinese martial arts practices continue to be developed and moulded to fit into our busy lives – and with an array of teachers and classes on offer – it’s up to the student to decide which approach is right for them.

SPORTS SUPPLEMENT

f the idea of prescriptive gym sessions leaves you with a feeling not dissimilar to rigor mortis, circus arts may just be the replacement that the right-hand side of your brain has been craving. “Gyms can be quite overwhelming and competitive, something that might not appeal to those of an artistic nature,” says Sian Haslock, of the Circus House in Manchester. “Circus has become more popular over the last few years due to the increase in people wanting to find an alternative.” So what exactly, you may ask, are circus arts? They are usually divided into three areas. Aerial courses tend to involve, well, being in the air – think trapeze (both flying and static), the hoop, and ‘silks’, where the only thing stopping acrobats from falling is a piece of fabric. There’s also acrobatics (y’know, like forward rolls, but better), and equilibristics, i.e. being dead good at balancing. While you’re chewing over which one might be for you and rejoicing in the fact that circus arts sound a little more appealing than cycling at 110rpm in a sweat box of a room, you’ll be glad to hear that the social nature of the activity helps disguise its physical intensity: “[It’s a] great workout, and you’re so busy having fun you don’t notice the work you’re putting in,” says Barry J Welsh, one half of aerial circus theatre company Freefall Circus, based in Liverpool. He goes on to explain: “Circus skills are a fun and interesting way to keep fit. There are many disciplines to choose from, including Aerial Circus, which is great for toning the upper body, for building core strength, helping to increase stamina and improve coordination and flexibility in general.” Though the idea of dangling mid-air may not automatically conjure feelings of excitement in those with acrophobic tendencies, the vast array of disciplines allows for a flexible approach (er, no pun intended), depending on your personal goals. Welsh expands: “Acro-balance is a high intensity but fun way to increase your flexibility, balance and strength. This discipline, while highly technical, can produce quick results and be practised without the need for high indoor spaces. Once you have the basics you can benefit from working on handstands and cartwheels... with friends in parks or outdoors.” “Manipulation of Objects or, in layman’s terms, juggling, can be beneficial to your coordination and spatial awareness. It can help you relax and act as a re-energiser when your brain feels tired through work.” Improving physical stamina through creative means and having fun all at the same time? Sign us up – and as if that wasn’t enough, Haslock has witnessed a positive impact on the mental well-being of class attendees. “It can improve confidence, [enabling an] understanding [of] how strong and capable every human body is,” she says. “I have a lot of women in my classes who have had negative body image problems and, through aerial arts, have found a respect for their bodies.”

thecircushouse.co.uk Freefall Circus are in residence at The Black-E: theblack-e.co.uk

Feature

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Emily Tilzey S

tudying Illustration with Animation, Emily Tilzey is currently in her third year at Manchester School of Art. “A lot of my work is inspired by the delicate state of mind a lot of us are in. We are experiencing constant flashes of energy and bouts of thoughts and feelings, our experience of life can be very uncertain, and is, often. People fascinate me with their complexities; I don’t think I will ever fully understand another person. “I wouldn’t say I have a ‘style’ as such, although other people recognise my work. I think I feel this way as I don’t just do painting and drawing or stick strictly to digital work. I don’t like to stay too long in one particular area – it is important and refreshing to explore other techniques in order to give life to your new ideas. “I create work spontaneously and never have pre-considered visuals in mind that I aim towards. In my younger years I used to agonise over making something look like something else and had to suffer the disappointment when it didn’t. I never really felt content with a lot of my earlier work. Working abstractly and expressively opened my mind and I found my happy place

using shapes, lines and colours. Soon I realised that this new abstract work I was creating had a lot more substance than the stale, lifeless drawings I had been doing throughout school etc. Understanding such things has been a real turning point in my artistic life, and although I have always been confident about my work, I finally feel comfortable with everything I do. “My own processes are somewhat dreamy and distorted although I’m often drawn towards the more organised realms of design. Some of my favourite pieces of art are posters or book covers. I find some sort of modest beauty in objects that are functional. I have dabbled in design work and enjoy it a lot. There is a crossover of fine art and design in some of my work; I feel it lends itself well visually into both categories. I recently created on a series of events posters for Manchester-based club Soup Kitchen after us both coming to the conclusion that a lot of promotional artwork lacks talent and consistency, and it has been one of my favourite projects so far.” www.emilytilzey.com Paths That Have Crossed (2014)

Sound (2014)

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SHOWCASE

Internals (2014)

THE SKINNY


Foreign Objects (2014)

Sorry For Shouting (2014)

Still Life (2014)

June 2014

SHOWCASE

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Writing for Change It’s about time that out actress and musician Heather Peace released what she describes as her ‘big, gay anthem’ Interview: Tasha Lee

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amous in part for being the only openly lesbian cast member of hit sapphic drama Lip Service, Peace has often appeared somewhat uncomfortable with being a spokeswoman for the community. Yet, with her second album The Thin Line, released this month, she has moved from the more personal and introspective style of her debut album Fairytales to one that takes seriously her role-model status.

“I try to help tackle the bigger issue. I try to be visible in the media and live my life honestly”

Heather Peace

Photo: Andrew Whitton

Heather Peace

Peace explains: “My own personal life is definitely less apparent in this album and more of my writing this time came from a place outside of my own self-indulgence! I think that’s because during the writing and the recording of The Thin Line, I was really happy in my own life and that wasn’t necessarily the case during the writing of a lot of Fairytales. Things that moved me this time were often other people’s stories and things they were going through. Or things on a wider spectrum such as the lyrics for We Can Change or The Thin Line, which deal with equal rights and the way we look at an international crisis on the news.” Politics on a wider scale is more at the forefront of The Thin Line. The first single We Can Change is an opportunity for Peace to comment

on how she, as a gay woman, feels about the prejudices that still exist in our society. Inspired by a quote given to her by a friend – ‘The similarities are far more interesting than the differences’ – Peace started to think about how to counteract prejudice. She says: “I just think if people spent a bit more time looking closely at the fact we’re all much more similar than we are different then there would be less hate and less prejudice.” Various gay rights milestones were also being reached at the time, with the equal marriage bill in particular bringing into sharp focus how much hostility still exists towards the LGBT community. “I was watching the equal marriage bill go through parliament,” says Peace. “And although we got there, it was tough to watch some of the comments along the way.” Another factor for the song, which in many ways defines the album, was that younger gay people who are struggling with being bullied often contact her. As part of this she involves herself in charities such as Diversity Role Models, The Albert Kennedy Trust and Kaleidoscope, which support LGBT young people. She says: “We Can Change is dedicated to all of those kids, because although I might send them a tweet to cheer them up, fundamentally I can’t do anything directly for them. I try to help tackle the bigger issue. I try to be visible in the media and live my life honestly and I go into schools to speak to kids and hopefully this all plays a little part in making their lives a little easier – if not right now, maybe in the future. The more gay people there are being visible and saying ‘so what?’ will hopefully lead to less kids being bullied in the future, because it won’t be such a misunderstood thing.” Heather Peace’s new album The Thin Line and its first single We Can Change will be released on 9 Jun www.heatherpeace.com

Why I’m Not an Activist Words: Luke Cockayne Illustration: Elena Boils

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eing an activist is a public job. You sign your name on the dotted line, you retweet, you’re photographed marching down the street. People see you standing up for your rights and the rights of others. People… notice. I don’t want people to notice me. Being myself is, in many ways, being invisible. Moving away from the pressure of being a female-bodied, female-presenting person and just stepping outside of all that for a while. The first time I intentionally dressed in ‘boy’ clothes, binding my breasts and hiding my hair, I was struck by the fact that no-one looked at me. I was used to people clocking me as I walked by, even though by societal standards I have never been much of a pretty girl. But as myself I just faded into the

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background. I would sit in crowds and feel still inside. Calm. Not broadcasting my gender identity, but fading into the bus seat or the architecture. Maybe it’s symptomatic of the continued way our society rewards masculine tropes and signifiers and punishes female ones – and I can see how some bio-men describe it as lonely – but I’ve never not been looked at in that way while presenting as female. I think it’s kind of great. I could go to meetings and demonstrations, join forums and make YouTube videos. There’s a whole trans umbrella of a community that I could join, but I don’t really want to. Being true to myself is enough of a fight for me, for now. I want to remain invisible for a little bit longer. That’s why I’m not an activist.

DEVIANCE

THE SKINNY


Up and Coming Three of MMU’s most promising Fashion BA students prepare to make an impact at Graduate Fashion Week

n 22 May Manchester Metropolitan University’s graduating Fashion BA (Hons) students took their collections to the catwalk to showcase their final year work. Ahead of selected students making the trip down to London for the largest graduate showcase in the world, Graduate Fashion Week (GFW), we caught up with three students who we are tipping for big things in the future. Marianne Callaghan from Paisley, in the west of Scotland, has already won the prestigious Topman Design prize with her 15-piece mini-collection. The award is a paid design internship at Topman HQ in London, where she will be working after she graduates. Inspired by her time living in China, Callaghan was especially interested in the collision of streetstyle and historical dress. She explains, “for example, monks in their robes, builders in their workwear and all other weird but brilliant traditional Chinese garments I saw worn out there. Which actually in many cases looked like it could translate into something really contemporary.” “I’m really interested in really high quality menswear, “ she adds, “but I also wanted to keep the collection young while at the same time really trying to create something completely new.” These chance encounters, and the idea of clashing ideas, are vital to Callaghan’s design process. “Photographing interesting people I see on the street, or unusual garments, often spark off ideas or narratives which can lead to further historical/visual research/trend research.” Callaghan has experimented with silhouette and drape, taking Chinese influences and incorporating them into wearable pieces like bomber

jackets, boxy coats and high-necked shirts. She has also created her own materials – including for a range of waterproofed garments – such as latex-coated knitwear, “transforming something quite dull into something much more exciting and new.”

“I like to take inspiration from something that would never be associated with fashion” Adele McNair

She explains that “I find functionality very important, so I find it interesting to take really unusual sources of inspiration and play with them to turn them into something else. “I tend to combine these often relatively cheap or creative fabrics with durable and high quality menswear fabrics such as wax cottons or denim. I have also been experimenting quite a bit with leather this year.” The resulting menswear collection, of pieces of mainly blue and orange, is practical yet directional – and has a feeling of laidback luxury.

Natalie Dawson

June 2014

Adele McNair

Marianne Callaghan

Another designer graduating from MMU whose work caught our eye is Adele McNair, who has already interned with British powerhouse Burberry and will start a one-year contract with American giant Abercrombie and Fitch in Ohio in February 2015. She tells us that she has always had a keen interest in fashion: “From an early age I would help my granny choose fabrics and make clothes for herself, so I think that’s where it all started,” she says. She then studied Fine Art at A-level. “When I started studying fashion, I decided to specialise in Print, enabling me to combine both my love for fashion and art,” she explains. McNair tells us that she likes to build a narrative around her designs, and always has a customer in mind “so that I can consider her needs and make the clothes in accordance to her lifestyle. I like to take inspiration from something that would never be associated with fashion.” For her final year collection, she has, like Callaghan, based her garments on primary images gathered while interning in China. “I have taken shape and detail ideas from Chinese bin men and the inspiration for my prints has come from imagery of washing lines,” she says. These ideas’ starting points have been recreated in abstract and geometric forms to produce a range of “mix-and-match prints and embellishments.” McNair has created stunning pieces from her own range of screen printed fabrics. “In my current collection I have used a lot of silk, which contrasted with my inspiration of the properties of the workwear, which was my staring point.” Texas-born Natalie Dawson’s work also stood out as something really special. After completing an HND in Fashion and Manufacture from Cardonald College in Glasgow, Dawson moved to Manchester to undertake her degree. She tells us, “I think the Northwest and Scotland have a very similar DIY approach to art and design. It taught me to put myself out there in order to get somewhere I want to be.”

FASHION

She adds that, “I started a workshop night at the Gaslamp called Nicho Box in order to gather research for this collection, but also to meet more artists in Manchester. Collaboration is another thing I learned from being in the Northwest. It helps to get your ideas out there quicker and faster.” Dawson’s colourful collection is based on a mixture of American and Mexican culture and is, in her own words, “A fun and positive meeting and celebration between the two.” Garment details and making techniques have been taken from Mexican nicho boxes, appliqué and pleating from traditional Mexican folk costumes. The silhouette of the collection is inspired by the 1950s American teenager. Dawson says, “The similarities in both are that they uphold cultural icons and share a love of kitsch. I wanted to avoid any Mexican icon imagery clichés such as the Lady of Guadalupe or Frida Kahlo.” Dawson has used a wide range of materials for her work – metallic leather, sequins, beads, gingham, Mexican oilcloth, and various silks – and has used techniques such as digital printing and pleating. She tells us that she is primarily a maker: “Instead of drawing technical designs and then making, first I usually do many samples of an initial idea. Then I start sketching full garments based on what I’ve constructed.” After a selection of MMU work has been shown as part of Graduate Fashion Week, which runs 31 May – 3 June, the MMU degree show will run from Friday 13 June (private view, 5.30pm) to 25 June where you can have a closer look at the mini-collections of the fashion department. www.gfw.org.uk www.art.mmu.ac.uk A shout out goes to our very own Fashion section contributor, Jessica Campbell, whose work has been selected for the GFW showcase

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Photo: Shanique Lemonious

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Interview: Alexandra Fiddes


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Low ’n’ Slow Ahead of Grillstock, the festival’s founders and local traders tell us what makes true BBQ. Plus: how to smoke a pie. Yes, a pie

Interview: Jamie Faulkner Illustration: Ben Kither (OWT creative)

Food News This month: giant pork scratchings and some things beginning with ‘A’, including a new restaurant for Crosby and awards of the street food variety Words: Jamie Faulkner

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n her chapter on fire from Consider the Fork, Bee Wilson writes: ‘There are signs that we miss fire and regret its absence from our lives.’ She moves on to describe the gusto with which we Brits jump on the opportunity to light the barbecue as soon as a protracted period of sunshine threatens. She’s right. We pounce on it, partly for the sheer novelty of cooking with a different medium, harnessing flame and smoke, often to poor effect. Usually it’s a rush job: cook enough food before the coals lose their heat, before the sun disappears, with capricious weather, poor technique, and lack of time conspiring against us. But that ain’t BBQ; that’s grilling, more akin to the Antipodean way. True BBQ is a much slower affair. It’s the Isaac Hayes to grilling’s Pendulum. It could be argued that Jon Finch and Ben Merrington co-founded BBQ festival Grillstock precisely because of this perceived ineptitude, ‘disillusioned’ as they were ‘by the poor interpretation of BBQ in the UK.’ But four years on from the first event, haven’t things changed? Isn’t the standard getting better? Finch has seen a definite trend: “The first Grillstock Festival took place in 2010. We struggled to scrape together ten teams for the first competition. Half of them were made up of friends and family that took part just to help us out. This year will see festivals six and seven for us and the competition places have been fully booked since last November. “It’s not just the sheer interest and enthusiasm that we’ve seen explode, though. The quality of the food being turned in by the teams just gets better and better each year. I think UK BBQ is forging its own style and character now and it’s far more interesting than what’s happening in the US. Unlike traditional US BBQ competitions, we’re seeing guys taking their influences from all over the world and incorporating them into their dishes.” Despite this mix of influences, there is something much more puritanical about

June 2014

American BBQ, with its distinct regional styles and fierce rivalries. And this is something Fire & Salt BBQ’s Malachy O’Connor, a street food trader in the Northwest, touches on: “When we’re talking about American BBQ, ‘barbecue’ is meat. You don’t ‘have a barbecue,’ you ‘make barbecue.’ And the rules for making barbecue are slow cooking over indirect heat using wood smoke. Spice rubs, marinades, sauces and cooking times are all just dressing. It’s the way you cook the meat that makes it barbecue.”

“True BBQ is all about time and patience” Jon Finch

But Karina Jadhav, director of Manchester’s Southern 11, notes the difference that something like a sauce can make to the final product: “It’s amazing how many different ways you can do pulled pork by just changing the wood you smoke it with and the sauce... whether you go for a North Carolina more vinegar-based BBQ sauce to contrast the sweetness of the pork or a classic Tennessee BBQ sauce to enhance the hickory flavours smoked into the meat.” Finch, meanwhile, emphasises the transformative effect that true BBQ, the low and slow kind, can have on meat. Take your humble brisket, pork butt (the shoulder, not the rear end!), or ribs, and make them into something almost unrecognisable: “The real art in BBQ is taking these unloved cuts of meat and turning them into something beautiful. True BBQ is all about time and patience. We want the fat and connective tissue to gently and gradually melt down leaving succulent, fall-apart meat that is packed with flavour.”

Though the three differ slightly, the common denominator uniting these advocates and purveyors of BBQ is that they all travelled in the US before starting their respective businesses. An eagerness to learn the secrets, coupled with more affordable air fares, has meant entrepreneurs and wannabe BBQ experts can head to the States and learn from some of the finest pitmasters there are. The BBQ trend in the UK lies pretty squarely with street food traders, restaurants and festivals over the country who are, in some respect, propagating a culinary art. O’Connor also points out the influence TV programming has had, particularly the escapades of Adam Richman: “The number of people who say to me ‘Oh yeah, I’ve seen this on Man v Food is surprisingly high.’” So, what can you do if you want to practice good BBQ? O’Connor has some sound advice: “You don’t need fancy equipment. A £20 barbecue grill from the DIY shop can make barbecue that’s as good as anything you can do with a £10,000 Fast Eddy smoker. My advice would be: get yourself a good fatty piece of meat (pork shoulder, brisket, meaty ribs); keep your smoker temperature at around 225F (108C); always give your meat at least 20 minutes to rest when it’s come off the grill.” And if you want to try something a little leftfield? “If you’re looking to try something a little different on the smoker or grill this summer, try pies. Apple pies, cherry pies, and peach pies are all American classics. Slow smoke them at around 390F (200C) for about 45 mins.” In a culture that’s increasingly geared to saving precious time, it’s perhaps no wonder that proper BBQ hasn’t caught on. But who knows, with global warming going the way it is, and the trend for copying America, maybe we’ll be a BBQ nation yet. Grillstock, Albert Square, Manchester, 28-29 Jun www.grillstock.co.uk/manchester-festival www.fireandsaltbbq.co.uk www.southern11.co.uk

FOOD AND DRINK

The British Street Food Awards

Speaking of Camp & Furnace, its food and beverage director, the talented Steven Burgess, is set to open his new restaurant, Albion, in Crosby this month. It’s doing ‘Old British’ food (but fancy-like – we’ve seen stargazy pie with rabbit and langoustines mentioned) with a menu that boasts a colonial ‘7 boy’ curry, bacon roly poly pudding and some epic-looking Sunday roasts a la C&F. They’ll be hosting the Crosby Street Food Market too. @Albion_Crosby In a quick round-up of other new openings news (is that tautologous?), Manchester’s Museum of Science and Industry have refurbished their Warehouse Cafe, perhaps to go along with their new direction. A bar called Allotment is opening in the Northern Quarter and as far as we’re aware will not boast any facilities for growing fresh produce. But it will have picnic hamper sharing plates and herby cocktails, so that’s something. @AllotmentBar Finally, we should also briefly mention that the supper club is evolving. In West Didsbury. Wendy Swetnam, of Wendy’s House supper club, and tearoom And the Dish Ran Away with the Spoon are teaming up to offer a group cookery class-cum-two-course meal. Swetnam has spent time at world-renowned restaurant Noma, so you’ll be in safe hands. 12 Jun, tickets £55 at crackinggoodfood.org.

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Photo: Bill Robinson

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une sees the Northern heat of The British Street Food Awards, presented by Guerrilla Eats. Old Granada Studios will play host to some of the region’s best traders and the public will be able to exercise their democratic privilege by voting for their favourite. A bit like a warm-up for next year’s general election, but with food. Which is to say better, but less impactful. Voting will be done on the British Street Food App so you better have a smartphone and signal. The winner on the night will go through to the final in Leeds in September. 14 Jun, Old Granada Studios, Quay Street, Manchester, no entry fee. It’s also time once again for Liverpool Craft Beer Expo. What’s intrigued us most so far is the picture of giant pork scratchings on the website; they look faintly disturbing, like if Dalí re-imagined a breadstick or Salad Fingers flew too close to the sun. Anyway, there are those, and 200 keg and cask beers, more substantial food from the Camp & Furnace lot, and music curated by the likes of The Kazimier and Mello Mello. 5-8 Jun, Camp & Furnace, tickets £8.75-10.50.


Jenny’s Bar rrrrr Our Food editor discovers adventurous cocktails, natural service and an ambience worthy of Winding Refn in a Fenwick Street basement bar Perusing the Ask Me Anything (AMA) pages of Reddit the other day, I came across a thread entitled: ‘I teach waiters how to use psychology to improve their customer service (leading to better tips, sales & return to customers)’. Using simple concepts, like mirroring body language and treating customers how they want to be treated, the Dynamic Waiter, as he refers to himself, will change your life. Well, if you’re involved in the hospitality industry. Sounds much like common sense, but taken a step too far. Those who have been ‘schooled’ often seem all too conspicuous – copy-cattish or cloyingly affectionate, like a madman or some over-zealous suitor. This AMA brought to mind two very different experiences of service I’d had recently. One took place in a Manchester citycentre restaurant, where the waitress did a thoroughly convincing impression of a monochromatically dressed automaton. The other was in Liverpool’s Jenny’s Bar. It was a pleasant, genuine interaction with someone who wasn’t what I’ve seen described as ‘teeth-bearing Disney-princess happy’, or clearly out for a tip. I guess what I’m getting at is: balance. Of course, you could put a good impression down to a one-off, or the particular staff member. But I’ve visited other establishments of Danny Murphy, the man behind Jenny’s, Berry & Rye and Some Place, and the experiences have been equally agreeable. Call it wishful thinking, but I’d like to think it’s indicative of satisfied staff and of a place that swims just strongly enough against the current. Murphy himself has alluded to doing things differently. When giving tips on opening a bar for the SevenStreets Almanac, he said, ‘create an offering so unmissable that you could open in the middle of nowhere and still be busy.’ Jenny’s,

Jenny's Bar

housed in the former seafood restaurant of the same name and set apart from the city’s drinking hotspots, is a testament to these words. It sure ain’t easy to find: keep your eyes peeled for an ever so time-worn awning, a relic of the former eaterie. But, forget the fishy connotations – there’s something almost cinematic about the basement bar. It would come as little surprise to wake up tomorrow to find that Nicolas Winding Refn was using it as a location for his next film. The jungle-scene ceiling, marble bar-top, stained glass, high-backed green leather seating and candle-lit tables all combine to create a strange and unusual harmony. And if balance and unusual harmony are to be buzzwords, then we better talk about the cocktails. The Shangri-La sounds like it shouldn’t

work given the almost ominous-sounding addition of ‘Chinese Takeaway Syrup’; but it does, especially with the fortune cookie ‘garnish’. There’s an odd savouriness (that one might speculate is MSG) that complements the sweet notes. The twists on classics are well executed: their Pool of Life, a take on a Gin Martini, sees the flavour profile of Tanqueray 10 expertly enhanced with grapefruit and lavender bitters, and homemade vermouth. The fresh Aperol Cobbler will help your soul transcend the underground setting on warmer days; and their Espresso Martini is arguably the best in town. Those who hotfoot it to the bar might miss the Whisky Business shop, which, contrary to its name, sells much more than just whisky – you can even avail yourself of the tricky-to-find Liverpool

Gin. Jenny’s permits punters to buy a bottle here and take it through, where you can keep it in a locker and get the bartenders to make you a drink with it. The only indication of a corkage fee is on their Facebook page, where they quote £50! I suppose, if you’ve got the money, there aren’t many other bars in Liverpool that’d make it worth it. [Jamie Faulkner]

Service would be best described as ‘psychic’. The majority of the staff have that front-ofhouse spidey sense that means they appear split seconds before you decide what you’ll order; you never have to wait for anything, and you’re never pestered unnecessarily. Questions about the menu are answered with polite confidence, so if you’re an indecisive dish selector fear not: just pass all the responsibility to the waitress, they’ll see you right. Starters cover the classic spring rolls and Thai fish cakes, but though both are executed well I urge you to push the boat out and snap up some Mee Grob (crispy noodles with prawns and tamarind) or a Tom Yam Hed (vegetarian hot and sour soup). Both perfectly represent the food of Phetpailin in that they provide serious challenges to most of your senses. You will taste striking

flavours, see vibrant colours, feel the burn of bird's-eye chillies. It’s the closest you’ll come to synaesthesia. At least without narcotics. The main courses offer the same sensory ambush, except this time there’s a classic option that I’d recommend. On my first visit I played it safe, sharing a Red Thai curry with one of my dining partners, who had just come back from a visit to Thailand. I was reliably informed that, in both appearance and taste, the Thai curry was bang-on authentic. If you insist on being adventurous, the menu provides more ‘exciting’ options: I’d firmly recommend the Pla Rad Prik (crispy fried tilapia with chilli garlic sauce) as an alternative. Appearance-wise the ample portions are heaped into bowls and on to plates with care but no great flair; if they did attempt a finer class of plating up it wouldn’t sit well with the place’s

homely style. And, one final word (or acronym) on the menu. BYOB. Yes, BYOB. Manchester has some fantastic restaurants. What it doesn’t have are many eateries where anybody and everybody is going to have a great time; a venue with such broad appeal and undeniable quality that you’ll wish it was less of an anomaly. Phetpailin is one of those places. [Jamie Faulkner]

If you liked Jenny's Bar, try: Berry & Rye, Liverpool From Dusk Til Pawn, Manchester Hemingway Bar, Prague Jenny’s Bar, Fenwick St, Liverpool, Merseyside L2 7NT

Phetpailin

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The word 'authentic' gets flung around a lot these days, but this tucked-away Thai restaurant gives the loose use of the term a run for its money Can a restaurant be described as an ‘everyman’? I hope so because that’s what I’m about to attempt. Let me elaborate: in fiction, an everyman is often a well-rounded character, with whom readers can readily identify. There is nothing lofty or extraordinary about these individuals; and they behave realistically (often in extraordinary circumstances), allowing for an even greater emotional connection. Take, for example, Arthur Dent in The Hitchhiker’s Guide to The Galaxy or Stan Marsh of South Park (if you’re a young buck). In the world of restaurants an everyman is rare, but that’s exactly how I’d describe Phetpailin. You’ll find this homely Thai restaurant nestled on the North side of Manchester’s Chinatown opposite Woo Sang supermarket (with its impressive bank of tiny bubblegum machines) and wedged between karaoke bars, traditional Chinese restaurants and an establishment called ‘Long Legs’. (I promise you I don’t know what goes on in there.) The restaurant itself has the now-familiar entrance-cum-archway, which leads to a staircase flanked by images of Thailand, which look like they’ve been artificially aged by an Instagram filter. They haven’t, they’re just quite old. Paired with the fake greenery and fairy lights, they contribute to a pleasant feeling of kitschy nostalgia. If you’ve ever visited Chaophraya, just close your eyes and picture their chandeliers and lifesize golden Buddhas; now think of the opposite and that’s Phetpailin.

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Review

FOOD AND DRINK

If you liked Phetpailin, try: I Am Pho, Manchester Tokyou, Liverpool Koya, London Phetpailin, 46 George St, Manchester M1 4HF

THE SKINNY


28-34 HIGH ST, NORTHERN QUARTER, MANCHESTER, M4 1QB

THERUBYLOUNGE.COM H @THERuBYLOUNGE H @CLASSICSLUM H CLASSICSLUM.COM

------------------------------------------MAY 30 - BBC MANCHESTER INTRODUCING LIVE featuring PAUGWE + RUBBERBEAR + GLASS ANKLE + DJ SET c/o DIRTY FREUD MAY 30 - DIAMONDS ARE FOREVER AN EVENING OF BESPOKE 70’S GLAM ROCK + POP MAY 31 - DANCE OFF! SWISS LIPS + REN HARVIEU DOUBLE AFTERSHOW PARTY JUNE 4 - CLASSIC SLUM present EMA + guest COLLEEN GREEN JUNE 7 - REMAKE REMODEL - THE NATION’S SAVING GRACE OF ALTERNATIVE ROCK’N’ROLL JUNE 8 - OFFICIAL PARKLIFE AFTER PARTY JUICY present DAVID RODIGAN + OSCAR WILDSTYLE + WIGGIE SMALLS + TWO:ONE + DARKA JUNE 13 - THIS FEELING featuring JAKE EVANS + SLYDIGS + THE RELAYS + THIS FEELING DJS JUNE 14 - POP CURIOUS? IT’S POP MUSIC. PLAYED LOUD JUNE 20 - DUSK TILL DAWN A WILD NIGHT OF CLASSIC SLEAZE + HARD ROCK WITH A TWIST OF PUNK + METAL JUNE 21 - GLASS ANIMALS JUNE 21 - HOWLING RHYTHM - 60s SOUL + MOTOWN + GRITTY RHYTHM & BLUES + FUNK JUNE 25 - HOLLY WILLIAMS JUNE 27 - SCARY MONSTERS MANCHESTER’S GREATEST 80’S NIGHT JULY 2 - CLASSIC SLUM present THE PAINS OF BEING PURE AT HEART + guests FEAR OF MEN JULY 5 - THE BRILLIANT CORNERS + guests THE HAYWAINS + HORSEBEACH JULY 5 - REMAKE REMODEL - THE NATION’S SAVING GRACE OF ALTERNATIVE ROCK’N’ROLL JULY 7 - RIXTON JULY 11 - THIS FEELING THE UK’S MOST ROCK’N’ROLL NIGHT OUT JULY 11 - CLASSIC SLUM present BONE-BOX (ACOUSTIC SET) + DAVID REDBRANCH + GREG LARKIN @ FALLOW JULY 12 - POP CURIOUS? IT’S POP MUSIC. PLAYED LOUD JULY 18 - DUSK TILL DAWN A WILD NIGHT OF CLASSIC SLEAZE + HARD ROCK WITH A TWIST OF PUNK + METAL JULY 19 - HOWLING RHYTHM - 60s SOUL + MOTOWN + GRITTY RHYTHM & BLUES + FUNK JULY 25 - A NORTHERN CONTRIBUTION featuring PUSHER + CLAY GARDEN + BLOSSOMS JULY 26 - DANCE OFF! DOUBLE DUELLING DJS DUKING IT OUT! SO FLUTE VS SPECIAL GUESTS JULY 26 - CLASSIC SLUM present THE ECCENTRONIC RESEARCH COUNCIL featuring MAXINE PEAKE @ ISLINGTON MILL JULY 27 - MIKE DIGNAM JULY 31 - CLASSIC SLUM present GUITAR WOLF + guests BONES SHAKE + HOPPER PROPELLED ELECTRIC AUG 1 - THE MOODS ALBUM LAUNCH PARTY + guests THE JOINT + HOSTED BY JB BARRINGTON (AKA WORDS ESCAPE ME) AUG 13 - CLASSIC SLUM present SPEEDY ORTIZ @ THE CLUNY / NEWCASTLE AUG 15 - THE COURTESANS + guests SEARU + HARDTAIL AUG 18 - CLASSIC SLUM present PROTOMARTYR + guests DÉJÀ VEGA AUG 26 - ACID MOTHERS TEMPLE & THE MELTING PARAISO UFO AUG 30 - ARCANE FLUX SEPT 19 - CLASSIC SLUM present RAE MORRIS @ THE DEAF INSTITUTE SEPT 23 - CLASSIC SLUM present RAE MORRIS @ THE CLUNY / NEWCASTLE SEPT 24 - CLASSIC SLUM present ANGEL OLSEN @ THE CLUNY / NEWCASTLE SEPT 25 - SPEAR OF DESTINY ’31 (THIRTY-ONE)’ UK TOUR + guests DAVID R BLACK SEPT 27 - DARLIA OCT 2 - THE IN CROWD featuring SLYDIGS + CLOCK TOWER + VENDETTAS OCT 3 - BLACK SUBMARINE OCT 11 - A NORTHERN CONTRIBUTION featuring SHAKEDOWN STOCKHOLM + VANDETTES + BLACK SONIC REVOLVER OCT 16 - CLASSIC SLUM present DANNY & THE CHAMPIONS OF THE WORLD + guests TREVOR MOSS & HANNAH LOU OCT 18 - VIRGIL AND THE ACCELERATORS NOV 1 - TIGERSIDE NOV 9 - ELECTRIC MARY NOV 10 - TRANS AM + guests PLANK NOV 12 - FEROCIOUS DOG NOV 24 - CLASSIC SLUM present BEANS ON TOAST @ THE CLUNY / NEWCASTLE NOV 27 - BEANS ON TOAST

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THE SKINNY


Festival Watch

Gig Highlights From the sharp pomp of Future Islands to the warped wonk of Luke Abbott – it’s all in a month’s work for you intrepid gig-goers

Words: Gary Kaill

As usual, where to gather without going too far afield – from Pondlife to LIV-BCN

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Do Not Miss Sun Araw & Laraaji: The Play Zone The Kazimier, Liverpool, 7 June

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five-act bill with The Royal Wedding, John McGrath and BLACKHOodS in support is led by a collaborative, dual performance by two unique American artists. Sun Araw is the recording moniker of Texan Cameron Stallones, whose work in recent years has seen him develop his electro, reggae and Afrobeat-influenced stylings both solo and in conjunction with the likes of The Congos and the Not Not Fun label’s ‘supergroup’ Vibes. Having turned 70 last year, Laraaji is veteran musician, actor and meditation guru Edward Larry Gordon, perhaps best known for his 1980 album, the Brian Eno-produced Ambient 3: Day of Radiance. The promoters promise that the two musicians will meet somewhere out in the cosmos – a psychedelic coming together based on a shared sense of mysticism and spirituality. It promises to be a transportive, immersive experience. [Gary Kaill]

June 2014

Words: Laura Swift

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Photo: Shervin Lainez

side from Oyé and Parklife, June in the Northwest is unusually quiet, probably because everyone is totally done in by May’s full frontal bank holiday assault, and saving themselves for summer proper. But a couple of alternatives for those same weekends have caught our eye. The first is posited as an actual alternative to Parklife, with the wryly titled Pondlife Wye Oak taking to Platt Fields Park, the former’s old home before it outgrew its student roots as Mad Ferret festival (remember that? Also: rememNorthwest. On 16 June, the Bridgewater Hall ber Dpercussion? Them’s were the days). It’s the hosts Eels, who pitch up at a venue seemingly most casual of casual affairs, a chilled jamboree made for the stripped-back classicism of recent album The Cautionary Tales of Mark Oliver Everett. of music, art, big sheets to doodle on, and ‘a bit Everett’s live show changes from tour to tour and of food’ – they’re suggesting distributing scran this should be a sharp counterpoint to last year’s for 50p a bowl – and it’s a community effort, so if you’d like to respond to their call-out for musifull band tour. Willy Vlautin, meanwhile, is one of cians and other entertainment (or stalls), you can the US’s great, unsung storytellers, a critically do so via their Facebook page. Looks like jewelacclaimed novelist and member of Americana lery, cake and clothes stalls have signed up so far. stalwarts Richmond Fontaine. He brings his new band, The Delines, to the Night & Day (18 June) on the back of broad acclaim for their stirring debut. Vocalist Amy Boone has a voice that seemingly knows heartbreak all too well. Take tissues. Liverpool grabs its share of the action with Brooklyn’s Parquet Courts on 22 June at the Kaz. Their skewed guitar pop saw them finally break through over here last year, and with new album Sunbathing Animal out in time for this UK jaunt, expect a wiry and uncompromising live show. Max Cooper We close a heady month with a couple of closely matched crackers. Electronic provocaThe weekend of 19-22 June, meanwhile, teur Luke Abbott plays a short tour that calls at brings one of the best-kept secrets on the dance Kraak Gallery on 25 June in support of second calendar – Gottwood electronic music and arts album Wysing Forest. Over at Gorilla on 30 June, festival, in Anglesey. This year is its fifth birthday Merrill Garbus, AKA tUnE-yArDs, plays songs and it’s brought in an anniversary-worthy line-up from her wondrous new album, Nikki Nack. How she transfers her tricksy, multi-tracked pop from with Gerd Janson, Prosumer and Ralph Lawson among the top bookings, while a live set from Max the studio to the stage should be nothing short Cooper paired with the festival’s idyllic woodof fascinating. land setting will maximise your chance of transcending this infernal plane. Other unmissables include Werkha’s slack grooves, Rinse FM fixture Brackles and Shackleton’s pal Appleblim – and Bristol’s tastemakers Eton Messy are always good fun. Finally, before you’re totally spangled and dressed as a tiger in a small clearing, keep an eye out for locals Jonny Dub, Rich Reason, TCTS and the guys from WAXXX all representing. Back in Liverpool, LIV-BCN calls itself the first independent festival of Liverpool and Barcelona, and promises to bring together a number of Spanish artists with local talent for a day of cultural exchange at The Kazimier on 21 June. It’s a varied line-up, with Barcelona-based folk artist Joana Serrat headlining, plus tunes from producer beGun and known Primavera Sound party DJ, DJ Coco. Flying the flag for Liverpool are GhostChant, Etches, and Broken Men. We’re pretty interested in trying the promised Catalan drink vermut, live illustration from Conrad Roset, and generally just kicking back in the Kaz Garden. And that’s kind of it. What can we say? Recharge your batteries; July’s calendar is already looking pretty disgusting.

In Liverpool on 5 June some band called Future Islands play The Kazimier. Unless you’ve made Mars your home these past few months, you’ll know they played the Letterman Show and managed to squeeze out a few gazillion YouTube hits. Those who’ve caught them prior to this year’s breakthrough know that their 80s-influenced synth pop can sustain a whole headline set. It’s sold out, but y’know, you can beg, borrow or steal. Maybe not borrow. Or steal. Just under a week later, 11 June sees US duo Wye Oak return to promote excellent recent album Shriek with a show at Manchester’s Soup Kitchen. Its predecessor, Civilian, saw Jenn Wasner and Andy Stack gain widespread acclaim, despite no-one being able to properly compartmentalise them. They were branded as all sorts – alt-folkies by some, crafty shoegazers by others. Shriek, dispensing with traditional instrumentation in favour of a new electronic sheen, confounds things further. Seeing how they handle the transition in a live setting should be a treat. Stay in Manchester ’til 14 June, when local lads YBAs (Young British Artists) launch debut album Change by Any Other Name at First Chop Brewing Arm. They’ve got the sound. They’ve got the songs. It seems reasonable to assume they can play the shit out of them live. Cross everything. The middle of the month sees a trio of distinct and distinctly American voices visit the

Laraaji

MUSIC

Photo: Liam_Ricketts

une! Summer! Sun! Well, perhaps not the latter. Those of us old enough to remember the by-now-legendary heatwave of 2014 are more than prepared to dream of a repeat, even if the prospect does put us in mind of the encroaching festival season and the gradual migration of gig-goers from dark, dusty dives to, well, dark, dusty fields. Still, apart from the annual Parklife Weekender, which takes place at Manchester’s Heaton Park on 7 and 8 June (with headline performances from Foals, Snoop Dogg and side attractions such as Warpaint, Daniel Avery and a Now Wave-curated stage featuring Bonobo and Factory Floor), those of us with a curious penchant for gigs under roofs can breathe easy for a while yet. An antithesis to festival largesse could be an evening with Night Beats, who are in Liverpool at The Shipping Forecast on 4 June. The Seattle trio are a solid proposition onstage, their psych garage grooves well suited to live performance. (They also play Roadhouse, Manchester, the night after.) The fourth o’ June in the rainy city, meanwhile, presents a triple headache for local music fans. While EMA stops off for a show at The Ruby Lounge, Manchester’s emerging electro duo Shield Patterns are at Soup Kitchen – while Australia’s Howling Bells play a show across town at The Deaf Institute. All three intrigue for different reasons. Erika M Anderson’s The Future’s Void took a healthy swipe at her debut’s art-riot methodology, retaining much of its graffiti fuzz but adding a deepening layer of musicality. One of the albums of the year performed by one of the most exciting live artists around? What are you waiting for? Led by singer Juanita Stein, Howling Bells emerged in 2006 with a brand of scuzzy dream-pop that deservedly won them a loyal fan base in their adopted UK. Their subsequent work has perhaps lacked the black magic of their debut, but comeback single Slowburn, trailing forthcoming album Heartstrings, hints at mojo recovered. Lastly, Shield Patterns launch their astonishing debut album Contour Lines with an intimate gig in the Northern Quarter. Claire Brentnall and Richard Knox have spent the past year perfecting their subby electro noir, and recent live forays confirm they’ve nailed bringing it fully, properly to life onstage.

Pondlife, Platt Fields Park, Manchester, 7 Jun, free Gottwood, Anglesey, Wales, 19-22 Jun, gottwood.co.uk LIV-BCN, The Kazimier, Liverpool, 21 Jun, 3pm-3am, £12, liv-bcn.com

Preview

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Album of the Month Remember Remember

Forgetting The Present [Rock Action, 30 Jun]

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If the sole mark of a good band is the consistent progression of a singular sound whilst remaining true to a core ethos, then Glasgow sextet Remember Remember can be considered up there with the best. Since their 2008 eponymous debut, the group have gone from a side-project for main man Graeme Ronald and his loop pedal to a fully-fledged, prog-like force to be reckoned with. Such advancement continues with third album Forgetting The Past, whose opening salvo Blabbermouth swoops in with such confidence and poise that it’s initially difficult to reconcile this as being the same outfit who gave us protracted, piecemeal epics

Fucked Up

Howling Bells

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Glass Boys [Matador, 2 Jun]

Motherhood has kept Juanita Stein and Howling Bells off the radar these past years, and fourth album Heartstrings must surely be a test of their staying power, eight years after the release of a hugely promising debut. The band’s strength remains Stein’s breathless delivery; she could sing the Australian phonebook and still make it a captivating listen. Where Heartstrings falls down is that when the music slips towards the pedestrian, her dark, sultry tones are not enough to hold it up. After a powerful opening (Paris’s mean hook, Possessed’s battering riffs and the reflective Your Love), the record starts to feel listless and repetitive. Euphoria is less than euphoric and Paper Heart is papyrus-thin – only Original Sin adds a little lust and wrath to the album’s closing stages. It’s all perfectly pleasant, but pleasant just isn’t enough to demand repeated listening. Thus, Howling Bells’ early potential remains unfulfilled for the time being. [Stu Lewis]

www.lookingforgold.blogspot.com

www.howlingbells.co.uk

Glitterbug

Roll the Dice

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A companion piece to Gold Panda’s globetrotting electronic odyssey Half of Where You Live, the second album from Til Rohmann, aka Glitterbug, is almost beatless for its first three tracks – following the by turns drifting and sculptured electronics of Dust and Silent Glory, 47th Floor’s syncopated, reverb-chewed beat sputters briefly into life, giving way to the spare rhythmic workout of Apparition. By the time you reach Far Far Light, a mellow slab of skeletal electro, you will be transfixed by the subtle, spacious alchemy of Rohmann’s minimalist production. When The City Was Bare, all twinkling synths and echoing, portentous drums, is a standout, as is the gently-tweaked prototechno of 1st of July. Rohmann wanted to evoke “urban shadows of the forgotten, the stories of our cities that remain untold.” This is liminal exploration, like Eno’s Music for Airports, and ranks with albums by Konx-om-Pax and Recondite as some of the most interesting ambient electronica of the past few years. [Bram E. Gieben] www.glitterbug.de

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Three and a half years is a long time to wait for a Phantom Band record. The Wants, a dark, brooding beast, was unleashed on listeners still punch-drunk from the sextet’s barnstorming debut Checkmate Savage just a year earlier. But the gestation period has done the Phantoms good: Strange Friend is their most refined and coherent album to date. It’s lighter and poppier than its predecessor and more musically akin to the debut, but their penchant to experiment remains. Shimmering, pulsating opener The Wind That Cried the World, with its squelching electro intro and wordless chorus sets the tone. There are synth splashes all over this, with the band happy to court the sort of hooks they may have tossed away for being too simple before. The gorgeous, folky Atacama and soaring (Invisible) Friends steal the show, on a record that has sound potential to soundtrack the summer ahead. [Finbarr Bermingham] www.phantomband.co.uk

Sage Francis

Until Silence [Leaf, 2 Jun]

Until Silence’s lingering power stems from its galvanising contrasts. For instance, the way the uncompromising Coup de Grace (a visceral combination of infrasonic bass, abrasive clatters and slashing Psycho-strings) is succeeded by the celestial sighs of Aridity, or how Aridity in turn yields to the coldly mechanical Where I Go, Darkness Follows. ‘Darkness’ is certainly an operative noun on Stockholm-based duo Roll the Dice’s third album, as Peder Mannerfelt and Malcolm Pardon venture into increasingly dusky territory with the aid of a 26-piece string ensemble – a forefront addition that adds levity and beauty to some pieces, density and menace to others. Casting a particularly formidable shadow is Assembly – a brooding, ten-minute colossus that builds from bare, purposefully monotonous percussion to an intensely dramatic climax. A similar dynamic appears in condensed form elsewhere, and, regrettably, overuse slightly dulls its impact. But the album’s moody undertow is persistently felt, keeping the synapses and nerves alert and alive. [Chris Buckle]

Copper Gone [Speech Development, 2 Jun]

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Sage Francis returns with a new album on Scroobius Pip’s Speech Development, putting paid to the notion that his step back from the constant grind of touring was also the point at which he hung up his mic. On the evidence of Copper Gone, Francis is back on top form, spitting the kind of melancholic, philosophical couplets which made him the go-to emcee for literate lyrics laced with dense, allusive layers of meaning. Opener Pressure Cooker has him spitting about profit and loss over chopped indie rock guitars. Grace has a killer vocal hook and dark, descending piano chords, Francis reflecting on “the difference between confession and conjecture,” the twin poles of his poetry. The electro-flavoured Cheat Code is another highlight; as is the intense, angry Dead Man’s Float and the propulsive, energised Over Under; while Buck 65’s Make ‘Em Purr runs on soft pianos, gently yearning. His most consistent album since Human The Death Dance. [Bram E. Gieben] www.sagefrancis.net

Shield Patterns

Alpha Male Tea Party

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Taylor McFerrin, eldest son of soul legend Bobby McFerrin, has signed to Brainfeeder, and it’s an excellent fit; more to do with his carefully slack beat-work than his family pedigree. On Early Riser, he takes a stab at reinventing classic 60s/70s soul for the LA beat scene and beyond, downplaying the genre’s heart-on-sleeve emoting, and emphasising its more psychedelic sonic features. The results are breathtaking. The drifting keys, guitar and echoing vocals of Postpartum lead into the stripped instrumental Degrees of Light, in its own way a quintessential Brainfeeder beat. The Antidote, featuring Nai Palm, is worthy of early Jill Scott, with her vocals breaking into tightly-laced raps. McFerrin repeats the trick on the gorgeous Decision, featuring Emily King. Stepps, another instrumental, melds pitch-bent, FX-laden synths with a stuttering electronic beats. Jazz vibes infiltrate Already There (with Thundercat), and Invisible/Visible, which features his father. A gorgeous record, likely to be seen as a touchstone in years to come. [Bram E. Gieben] www.brainfeeder.net/taylormcferrin

Review

Strange Friend [Chemikal Underground, 2 Jun]

Taylor McFerrin

Early Riser [Brainfeeder, 2 Jun]

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The Phantom Band

Heartstrings [Birthday Records, 2 Jun]

From their sprawling 75 minute debut to 2011’s double LP David Comes to Life, Fucked Up have always presented themselves as an atypical punk band despite their expletive-dropping name. Contrary to the dozens of short and snappy 7"s they’ve dropped over the years, the Canadians’ album output has gradually positioned itself further away from hardcore and into the realm of melodic indie rock. Glass Boys opts for brevity above all else, presenting itself as a lean collection of ten well-paced songs. The guitars are as psychedelic and as multi-layered as ever, and Damian Abraham’s almighty bellow ranges from in your face to drowned out and abstract. Echo Boomer piles on layers of colourful noise, whereas The Art of Patrons relies on anthemic hooks, but there’s still plenty of room for experimentation despite the anthem-geared approach, as lead track Sun Glass will attest. By taking a more aggressive stance, quality control-wise, Fucked Up arrive at their most cohesive record thus far. [Ross Watson]

Dust [NOTOWN, 9 Jun]

such as Fountain/Mountain just a few short years ago. Rather than aurally build its structures brick by painstaking brick, much of Forgetting The Past comes on fully constructed in this way, like a pre-fabricated crystalline cathedral spinning in a starry cosmos. The general nod to repetition remains of course, but here the loops form more of a tone-setting background over which the six-piece mesh a looser, livelier organic template. It’s bolstered by the overall feel of more assured production and, despite the countless layers of sound, a mind-set of ‘less is more’ throughout. Despite the contradictory album title, Forgetting The Present is an indelible work, surely bound to remain etched on the memory way into the future. [Darren Carle]

Contour Lines [Gizeh Records, 9 Jun] These songs; even the titles build anticipation. Carve the Dirt. Dust Hung Heavy. Present State. Claire Brentnall and Richard Knox’s debut is a hyper-realised, hugely individual work that splices song-craft with darkly sumptuous electronica. The term’s waning critical currency is a symptom of its overuse, but, for once, here’s an album, such is its scope, that’s properly cinematic. Tracks journey and unfold. Take the discordant clatter of Charon: its extended opening, its unexpected flicker of melody, its deathly fade. Contour Lines’ grandiose orchestrations aim high – think Kate Bush’s Ninth Wave meets Massive Attack’s Mezzanine via Bartok. Buried somewhere within, Brentall’s words are beautifully emblematic: befitting its expressionist stylings, she enacts, rather than delivers. On more than one level, it’s beyond words. Ten songs that, from a distance, are almost overcome by their own self-effacing modesty. Ten songs that carry enough charge to burn a hole in your heart. Contour Lines is immense. [Gary Kaill]

Droids [Superstar Destroyer, 2 Jun] Whoever thought up such a ridiculous genre name as ‘math rock’ anyway? It’s just counting. No sums involved. No challenge, unless you find it particularly difficult to be carried away by molten tides of lurching metrical monstrosity… much like those which erupt from Alpha Male Tea Party’s active imaginations, in fact. Oft compared to the likes of And So I Watch You From Afar and Brontide, their rewardingly complex racket jumps from awe-inspiring metallic proficiency to jagged post-punk gnarl; from brain-crushing heaviosity to wordless, jaw-to-the-floor anthems. Athlete’s Face is filled with fascinating twists and turns – a complete adventure in itself – but the brilliantly-titled You Eat Houmous, Of Course You Listen To Genesis steals the show. Seriously, in order to feel this heroic, one usually needs to be in possession of all the powers of Castle Grayskull. Essentially, Droids is full-colour instrumental wondrousness, with nary an equation in sight. Get on it. [Will Fitzpatrick] www.alphamaleteaparty.com

Playing Manchester Soup Kitchen on 4 Jun www.shieldpatterns.com

RECORDS

THE SKINNY


Tom Vek

The Proper Ornaments

King Buzzo

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Luck [Moshi Moshi, 9 Jun]

Luck as an album title must surely be an ironic nod towards Tom Vek’s curious history. Stardom beckoned a decade ago with a storming debut, but a six-year delay before second LP Leisure Seizure’s release meant his gathered momentum had all but evaporated. It’s to his enormous credit that, despite such setbacks and the passing of time, Vek is still keeping the bar high and producing wilfully awkward, angular and sometimes brilliant fare that dresses itself up as floorfilling pop. The ragged Sherman (Animals in the Jungle) and layered harmonies of Pushing Your Luck are a fine reminder of the Londoner’s talent and equal to anything on We Have Sound. Occasional quality-control lapses seep through (The Girl You Wouldn’t Leave For Any Other Girl is little more than acoustic filler) and Vek’s nasal purr might not be for everyone, but this is an otherwise welcome return from a genuine innovator. [Stu Lewis]

Wooden Head [Fortuna POP!, 9 Jun] The brainchild of Max Claps, who deserves a round of applause for his (real) name alone and Veronica Falls’ James Hoare, Wooden Head is a lovingly imagined collection of neo-psych pop. Think Jesus and Mary Chain but brighter, less reductive. Its melancholic slant and its lo-fi origins (recorded on an eBay-acquired 8-track) make for sturdy, if not necessarily thrilling, gloom pop. Its sensibilities are authentic but it’s eventually hamstrung by its running time, 14 tracks exposing a limited palette. It could do with two or three killer tunes, headline big hitters that might make for a more compelling ebb and flow. The acoustic Ruby is a sweet and dreamy contrast to the largely electric soundboard, as is the epic You Shouldn’t Have Gone, whose flighty atmospherics reference MBV. But too few of Wooden Head’s tunes make enough of a mark to allow for more than reserved recommendation. [Gary Kaill]

Parquet Courts

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If you’re eagerly anticipating the return of punk-rap terrorists Death Grips, or thrilled by the pitch-dark, metal-enhanced goth-rap of BLKHRTS; if Kanye’s Black Skinhead wasn’t feral and intense enough to give you the feels, then LA’s clipping are for you. The trio employ similar tactics on this lean, uncompromising album – it is replete with sheet-metal distortion, 808s that bang like helicarriers under missile fire, and ferociously-spit double-time lyrics. Part of the album’s intensity is down to front-man Daveed Diggs, whose rapid-fire delivery is an exact mid-point between Kanye’s throwaway exhortations to twerk or eat his dick and the ferociously abstract, nihilistic poetry of MC Ride. Joined by some big name guests (Gangsta Boo of Three 6 Mafia, King Tee and others), he ranges between low-slung bumpers like Work Work, coming off like a more gangsta Cool Kids; to the cut-and-paste noise terror of Williams Mix; to the spectral, Antipop Consortium-like minimalism and abstract poetry of Dream. [Bram E. Gieben] www.clppng.bandcamp.com

Young British Artists

Change by Any Other Name [YBAs, 16 Jun]

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Get ready to fall, and fall hard. After so many false starts in the town this past couple of years, Young British Artists are a Manchester band who mould heritage materials as fearlessly as the late 80s mavericks from whom they take their name. Reference points are refreshingly off-kilter – there’s a hint of early Ride in the driving fuzz of A New Language, a nod to Hüsker Dü in Everything in Front of You. Change by Any Other Name is not hugely melodic but it’s the raw physicality that convinces, a guitar thrust that smartly pitches Leo Scott’s warm vocals a couple of layers beneath the tumult. Gravitas and enigma ensue. The closing Forget Your Past is a sweet pull of the rug – as startling a closer as, say, Untitled on R.E.M.’s Green. Much like the old guard this young band surely hold dear, you sense ambition taking hold. [Gary Kaill] www.youngbritishartists.co.uk

They said it couldn’t happen. They said it shouldn’t … oh, OK. We’re fibbing. Still, after 31 years and 19 Melvins albums, it seems odd that Buzz Osborne should finally choose to strike out alone. Speaking disdainfully of solo efforts that sound like “a crappy James Taylor,” he’s promised that This Machine Kills Artists will be “a different animal,” and sweet mother of crap, he’s not kidding. Entirely acoustic but formidably hard-edged, it’s filled with crushing riffology and deranged howls – not entirely dissimilar to those of his day job. There are surprises too, of course: the haunting New River hums with desert-parched blues, and How I Became Offensive plays tricks with us all by bordering on the sweetly reflective before exploding into menacing power chords. Meanwhile, Buzz remains as brilliantly manic as ever, ploughing more intensity into these 17 (!) tracks than most bands manage in a lifetime. Artists beware. [Will Fitzpatrick]

Emma Ruth Rundle

CLPPNG [Sub Pop, 9 Jun]

Sunbathing Animal [Rough Trade, 2 Jun] There’s an uneasy cheeriness in the way Andrew Savage utters “I can’t breathe, I can’t breathe” towards the end of Instant Disassembly’s naggingly repetitious seven minutes, ten songs into Parquet Courts’ addictively disquieting third LP. Their world’s widened since 2012 breakthrough Light Up Gold, but much of Sunbathing Animal proves that the Brooklyners remain at their most comfortable making listeners feel a breath from suffocation. Guitar tones are so clean they’re chapped raw, while the spiking percussion lies like a bed of nails underneath the record’s exterior, most notable on the sadistically chipper What Color Is Blood and sticking out jaggedly amongst Always Back In Town’s tumbling hooks. The tension throughout is palpable, only fully released on the title track, which rips and tears apart the cloying claustrophobia as Savage spits belligerently over the top. This is no huge departure from Parquet Courts, though it makes for another brilliantly jarring experience nonetheless. [Simon Jay Catling]

This Machine Kills Artists [Ipecac, 2 Jun]

Some Heavy Ocean [Sargent House, 2 Jun]

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In a similar vein to label-mate Chelsea Wolfe, there’s a certain desolation and sparseness to Emma Ruth Rundle’s sound that’s both mysterious and alluring. The title track which opens her first solo record outside of her other bands Marriages and Red Sparowes is peppered with traces of subtle despair. Some songs feature more layered instrumentation, like the soft, swayful Run Forever, which features a bouncy, determined chorus, whereas others rely on reverb-soaked acoustics, like the quietly cathartic Oh Sarah. “What have you gone and done?” she sings with gentle peril on Shadows of My Name. On Haunted Houses, she repeats the refrain “keep your distance from me,” and it sounds like a genuine, fearful warning. This is Rundle’s most lyrically rich outing – her voice is given free rein to float above the instrumentation, and the results are simultaneously disheartening and comforting. This is an impressive, accomplished solo debut from a seasoned player. [Ross Watson]

Bob Mould

Martyn

Beauty & Ruin [Merge, 9 Jun]

The Air Between Words [Ninja Tune, 16 Jun]

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Bob Mould’s been cranking out classics for 35 years, from Hüsker Dü’s deceptively-tuneful blitzkrieg to the heroic powerpop of Sugar, and recently he’s hit upon a rich vein of form. Admittedly, this new ’un is probably the darkest he’s been since second solo album Black Sheets of Rain in 1990: Beauty & Ruin was composed in the wake of his father’s death, and morosely mid-paced opener Low Season suggests there’s a rough ride in store. From there on in, however, the mood changes. The melodies get brighter, the pace picks up, and Bob’s buzzing guitar cuts through the contemplative lyrical tone to make for some pretty exquisite rock’n’roll. Kid With Crooked Face and The War will provide succour to long-term fans, each meshing intimate self-reflection with velocity and power, but the softer Forgiveness should melt a few hearts too. “We won’t grow,” Bob insists, desperately attempting to salvage a relationship, before pleading, “so don’t go.” Simple but devastating. [Will Fitzpatrick] www.bobmould.com

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Martyn’s debut album, Great Lengths, was a standout in the first wave of post-dubstep. 2011’s Ghost People, on Brainfeeder, was more restless and experimental, with fewer tracks pitched directly at the dancefloor, although in the intervening time he’s been no slouch at producing solid cuts on 12"s and EPs for other labels. Now firmly ensconced in the Ninja Tune family, he returns with the deliciously analogue, sculptured minimalism of The Air Between Words. Early track Glassbeadgames, with Four Tet, strips back UK garage to its atmospheric bones; Empty Mind luxuriates in a subacid riff and pulsing electro beat; while the filtered, jazzy house of Drones harks back to earlier Ninja Tune artists. Love of Pleasure, with vocals from Hype Williams’ Inga Copeland, is a standout; a hazy, emotive slice of deconstructed broken beat. The rest of the record stands up, with excursions into filtered analogue techno and drifting, spectral house. Elegant and beautifully realised. [Bram E. Gieben] www.soundcloud.com/3024world

PAWS

Youth Culture Forever [FatCat, 2 Jun]

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PAWS took the brave decision to handle production duties of Youth Culture Forever themselves, a bold move that other groups have lived to regret. But the Glasgow-based trio have pulled it off – their second album is a step up from playful debut Cokefloat!, taking them away from a reliance on the trusty quiet-loud-quiet dynamic. In Phillip Taylor, PAWS have a songwriter with a knack for anthemic choruses and lyrics resplendent with fine deadpan humour (“Do you know how long it takes to get from Scotland to Dalston?” he asks on An Honest Romance, a tale of being stood-up in the capital). These moments of levity are needed on a record that deals a lot with relationship breakdown. “Just 22 and I feel like I’m through,” sings a weary Taylor on the attention-grabbing opener Erreur Humaine. His emotional honesty on Someone New never jars; not with a chorus that was made for mass crowd participation. Youth Culture Forever speaks a language that fans of all ages can understand. [Chris McCall]

Jerry David DeCicca Understanding Land [Electric Ragtime, 2 Jun]

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The Black Swans are no more, their fifth and final album, 2012’s Occasion For Song, a frank meditation on the loss of band member Noel Sayre. Sayre was a close friend of Jerry David DeCicca, the band’s singer and songwriter, and the sombre tone of his final band recording informs much of this solo debut. Recorded alone in his London flat and supported by a starry cast (including Will Oldham and Kelly Deal) who also added their parts from their homes, Understanding Land’s spare and muted arrangements are assembled from little more than acoustic guitar, strings and soft percussion, a setting that gives the various voices room to lift and breathe. Eve Searls’ lead turn on Opportunity to Love might just break your heart, so beware; but this is DeCicca’s vision and he emerges as a grizzled troubadour of vision and heart. “I waited my turn to bloom again” is Understanding Land’s closing line. Quite. [Gary Kaill]

The Top Five 1 2 3 4 5

Remember Remember

Forgetting The Present

Shield Patterns

Contour Lines

The Phantom Band

Strange Friend

Parquet Courts

Sunbathing Animal

Taylor McFerrin

Early Riser

www.jerrydaviddecicca.com

June 2014

RECORDS

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Chain and the Gang

The Kazimier, Liverpool, 27 May

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Oh, Ian Svenonius! He’s stood at the front of the stage, lecturing us on Jorge Pardo’s Penelope, a brightly-coloured and multitentacled sculpture of significant proportions, handily located just outside the venue. “You can thank the ravers for that,” he advises, his lip curled into a mock-sneer, before somehow finding a way for Chain and the Gang to segue into another garage-pop stomp. Immaculately clad in preposterous silver suits, the various Gang members provide the po-faced and endlessly cool jerkin’ backing for their frontman’s wildly vivacious stage presence. Together they’re a pleasingly ramshackle rock‘n’roll machine, but there’s little doubt that proceedings are dominated by 46-year-old whirlwind Svenonius as he struts, preens and drunk-daddances the set away. Who else can captivate an

personalities through their interplay. (It’s a mode Sidiki is used to, given that he’s perhaps better St George’s Hall, Liverpool, 27 May known for his work with Malian rapper Iba One.) rrrrr While Toumani plays with an air of statesAs one of the most famous griot clans from Mali, man-like cool, Sidiki’s approach to the kora has the Diabaté family have been bringing West more than an element of swagger: he attacks African folk music and the kora to a wider audithe strings with rhythmic stabs, makes virtuosic ence for decades. Merely hearing a kora played by flurries and provides a certain sense of joyous a Diabaté is a treat in itself. Those at St George’s urgency to the occasion. With Toumani and Sidiki Hall tonight, however, witnessed a true passingclearly glowing off each other’s presence, it’s all of-the-torch moment from father to son, and the the more affecting. direct comparison between Toumani and Sidiki The tradition of kora music has been held in made the performance all the more mesmerising. more than capable hands for around three centuMuch of tonight’s audience would have been ries with the Diabatés, but what’s on display this drawn to this event by Toumani’s name, but from evening is perhaps the first Diabaté to embrace a the outset it is clear that Sidiki would play the truly global culture and, with it, inform his pracfrontman. Opening the proceedings with a solo tice of Malian folk. Toumani is already a star of piece, Sidiki’s limitless energy and inventiveness world music; his son has the potential, perhaps, is on show throughout; Toumani prefers lilting to be celebrated on an even bigger stage. calm. It’s a testament to two confident per[Jon Davies] formers that they are able to express their own

audience with those moves? Who cares? He’s doing it now, and good golly gosh, it’s a joy to witness. With such a showman at the helm, you’d be forgiven for thinking the actual songs might be something of a sideshow. But nope, they’re just dandy: Devitalise loses the Fall-esque groove of its recorded counterpart, but acquires a welcome harshness to its minimalist punk rush. Meanwhile there are highly agreeable hints of Bratmobile in the one-string guitar riffs and shonky solos, giving pep to the likes of Trash Talk and Livin’ Rough. Typically, Svenonius ends the show getting down and dirty among the (disappointingly sparse) crowd, holding the enraptured attendees in the palm of his hand. All shows should be as good as this. That they aren’t is arguably modern rock’s greatest tragedy. [Will Fitzpatrick]

Fat Out Fest

Fat Out Fest

cushions on the fifth floor for some Video Jam collaborations. The Young British Artists give rrrrr Amanda Belantara’s snowy Sonotoki the postWhat is it with Bank Holiday festivals and rock treatment, calling to mind Mogwai’s score Islington Mill exactly? Piecing together another for spooky French TV gem Les Revenants, and set of late, sleep-deprived nights, Fat Out’s latwe catch Charles Hayward, who manages to be est festival – their third – is a claustrophobic, a more hectic spectacle than the colourful film collaborative effort, cramming an international strip he’s scoring. Die Hexen’s ethereal Celtic array of artists into the Mill’s dark rooms to creelectronica is impressive too. Back downstairs, ate a weekend that’s not always comfortable but Terminal Cheesecake give us a healthy dose of is always captivating. shredding picks-to-the-air psychedelia before With only the Club Space active on Friday the standouts of the day, Melt-Banana. Yasuko night, Chicaloyoh makes for an understated Onuki controls the crowd with her futuristic light start, Alice Dourlen putting together eerie glove, yelping her way through infectious grindsoundscapes that vary from demented fairpop songs that last thirty seconds tops, before ground organ to Arabian desert trekking. Despite ending with a delirious cover of What a Wonderful the odd waft of local chippy and camomile, there World. Wow. is a French motif to this first evening as minimalSunday calms down with the delicate Finnish Bougé follow next and steal the day. Few people folkie Lau Nau and a long-delayed visit to the can understand any of their poetry, but their Mill’s yoga room where Danny Saul and Sam flitting steel pans and double bass are infused Weaver are making ambient sounds with disconwith a jazzy energy that’s impossible to deny; bril- nected dial tones. Nadja’s black-clad droners liant, and very distinctive. The same can’t be said try their best at one-upmanship with a bow and for Nisennenmondai, the Japanese trio whose drum loop that crashes harder as it goes on. no-wave ticks along with military efficiency but Once we’ve grabbed some of Kim Irwin’s lovely leaves us with the exhausted feeling of having vegetarian grub in the courtyard we’re back for spent the last half hour stood in a wind tunnel. Farewell Poetry, the neo-classical multimedia We arrive for the end of the white gimpcollective whose post-rock swoons and burns suited Barberos and their destructive double with electric violin and haunting spoken word. drum attack on Saturday: an auspicious start. Cut Hands’ thumping Central African rhythms After having another play with Don McLean’s fill the dance floor to close the festival, but the Contact Hz installation and watching the true climax came upstairs earlier on where all the misleadingly named Naked (On Drugs)’s lithe bands improvise a 360° performance. Sometimes lounge noodlings, we settle down on the comfy you can’t limit unity to a schedule. [Chris Ogden]

Hauschka

Hauschka

The International Anthony Burgess Foundation, Manchester, 16 May

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With the International Anthony Burgess Foundation intimately curtained off and laid out in the round with a piano in the centre adorned with oddities like ping pong balls and ticking pendulums, sitting down to watch Hauschka feels more like watching an eccentric professor at work in his office than a classical recital. Such is the imagination of Volker Bertelmann, the Dusseldorf composer whose boundless experimentation takes us on an evening into unexplored mental alcoves. First up, though, is Elizabeth Preston, the Blackpool songwriter who offers us a “Western sandwich” of a set made up of loops on her trademark cello. There is some of Bat for Lashes’ mysticism about her; her smoky Lancastrian voice hiccups playfully through animalistic lines about weaving spiders and wounded lions, and all her songs creep with the cello’s sonorous menace. Preston’s alliterative lyrics and bare instrumentation expose her true warmth every so often,

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and her last song keep our minds moseying with its hand-clap horse clops. As Bertelmann plays in support of his latest album, Abandoned City, the crowd leans forward in curiosity as he takes knick-knacks from a duffel bag at his side and places them atop various parts of the piano. Over the course of the night his one instrument is transformed into an astounding array of others: a creaking floorboard for Pripyat, a swampy guitar, a full percussive section. The result is hauntingly tactile electronica, effortlessly evoking subway tunnels and apartment buildings that soon vanish into the ether. Bertelmann is generously chatty throughout, expressing his desire to communicate as a way of counteracting the loneliness and ritual loss intrinsic to his creative process. Fittingly, he closes with a funereal dismantling, methodically picking up all his piano props and throwing them to the floor, causing one ping pong ball to bounce down the aisle. When the spirits of these objects die down, what we’re left with is one musician and his remarkable ingenuity. [Chris Ogden]

Photo: Nick Bojdo

Islington Mill, Salford, 23-25 May

MUSIC

THE SKINNY

Photo: Sam Huddleston

Chain and the Gang

Photo: Michael Sheerin

Toumani Diabaté + Sidiki Diabaté


Under the Influence: Saine Contributing to the first release on Andy Hart’s new label Voyage, out at the end of this month, Finnish producer Saine reckons with ten rekkids that have filtered in to his sound

Interview: Daniel Jones

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auri Saine is a friendly Finnish bloke who spends most of his time welding chuggedout house grooves with a snappy hip hop aesthetic. Based in Helsinki, he’s been producing properly for the best part of ten years and has four albums under his belt already; but it’s the recent trio of tub-thumping EPs on Must Have Records, Odd Socks and Sleazy Beats Black Ops that has cemented the name Saine as a marker of reliable quality. His latest Business Hours EP is a vessel for sharp synth lines, soulful refrains and merrier disco vibes. It’s slightly tighter than previous releases, but that doesn’t detract from the signature stable wonkiness at all. And, there’s more to come this year – keep a keen ear out for new track Gravy, rolling out on Andy Hart’s fledgling Voyage imprint this month. Now, the reason we’re all here. It’s not too much of a surprise to find that Saine counts the likes of Tribe, Luomo and Terekke among his major influences, but there’s a fair few selections on this list that may well raise an eyebrow or two.

A Tribe Called Quest – The Low End Theory [Jive] It would be impossible for me to speak of influences without acknowledging The Low End Theory – while perhaps an obvious choice, it’s my favourite hip hop record of all time. Had I never come across this album back in the 90s, my sound would definitely have turned out differently. To this day, I find myself inspired by the smoky, gimmick-free textures of this music: muffled double-bass hooks, discreet use of jazz samples, laidback rhymes. I always liked stuff that doesn’t cry for attention, with all the energy and style found beneath the apparent surface. Luomo – Vocalcity [Force Tracks] Kinda falls in between genres, maybe that’s why I always enjoyed the album so much. Sure, cynical ears will hear some turn-of-themillennia cheesiness but I love the night-time feel throughout and the way these tracks constantly evolve – not necessarily towards a set destination but instead just flowing aimlessly. It’s very hard to achieve that vibe I think. I heard Sasu Ripatti himself never considered this among his best work and the fellow Finn certainly has a lot of different releases under his belt (and under many monikers), but for me, this was always the one. Fela Anikulapo Kuti & Africa 70 – Opposite People [Decca] This music can’t be put into words. The endlessly repeating guitar riffs, the horns, all that movement... Man, it just doesn’t get much better than this. I listen to this stuff so frequently, it’s bound to have left a mark on my tracks as well. The Bees – Sunshine Hit Me [We Love You] A friend of mine introduced me to this album a few years ago (shouts to Steph!) and I’ve been coming back to this every spring since. Known as Band of Bees in the States, this record just makes me smile. This is all about worn-out T-shirts, burning hot asphalt on a driveway, those never-ending summer afternoons.

June 2014

Saine

Jaga Jazzist – A Livingroom Hush [WEA] The debut from the Norwegian outfit, I’ve always been inspired by this group’s instrumentation and clever blend of jazz and electronics. Personally I’m not really into big bands and Jaga Jazzist certainly has a big ass horn/winds section going, but they always somehow manage to keep everything super stylish – beautiful arrangement! Check out their later albums as well. Bill Evans Trio – Sunday at the Village Vanguard [Riverside Records] I’m a big jazz guy and there’s so many records that I wanted to include here, but it’s Bill Evans’ chord work that made me end up with this one. It’s all still a mystery to me, but I think whenever I make music, regardless of style, there’s always an unconscious attempt to reach the vibe of some of those modal passages. The dude really made the piano sing. I also love this album because of Scott LaFaro’s impeccable double bass work throughout – unfortunately, though, LaFaro was killed in a car accident just ten days after the recording of this album.

Led Zeppelin – Houses of the Holy [Atlantic] What can I say, Led Zeppelin is a big deal to me. My personal favourite Led Zep moments are scattered evenly across their albums, though. After this, most modern rock leaves me cold. The drums are but soulless clicks and snaps and you can no longer crank up the volume – yeah, here we go with the usual whine! Well this band certainly shows how it’s done – and their songwriting has always been something I look up to. Erykah Badu – Baduizm [Universal] Classic debut from one of the greats. I’ve always admired Erykah Badu and I even remember the moment I first stumbled upon her music. I was listening to a night-time show on Radiomafia here in Finland around 1998 I think, and Appletree started playing. Bam! This album also got me into the Rhodes piano, finally resulting in me getting one myself. Can’t help it, those neo soul-ish chords played with the Rhodes – I’ll never get tired of that vibe.

CLUBS

Terekke – Damn E.P. [L.I.E.S.] Modern lo-fi awesomeness from Matt Gardner. I wanted to include this EP from a couple of years ago as it’s had such a lasting effect on me – one that’s bound to have made its way into some of my productions as well. Not every L.I.E.S. record has worked for me quite on this magnitude, but this one certainly does the trick every time. Datassette – People Without Mouths EP [Shipwrec] From 2012, this is the newest one on the list. One of those records I keep wanting to go back to and has certainly inspired me. The guy knows his craft, and he’s obviously got an exceptional ear for harmonies and really squeezes the most out of his analogue synths. The drums are crispy as hell, too. Sometimes I like to play a dubby version of this 45 at 33 rpm. Voyage kicks off with a four-track split EP, VYG01, featuring Saine, Harvey Sutherland, CTEPEO ‘57 and Andy Hart, released 30 Jun www.saine.bandcamp.com

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Clubbing Highlights It’s June, it’s time to hold a flame to your recently expired university text books. However, even if you’re not a student, there are more than enough reasons to party... Words: Edwina Chan Illustration: Verbals Picks

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e begin this month right on the dot as London’s daytime party secretsundaze gets a Northern touch from the Polka guys on 1 June at Kitchen St, Liverpool. secretsundaze was founded by Giles Smith and James Priestley and since 2002 has upheld its reputation as a fine purveyor of underground electronic music. They’ve hosted arenas at Lovebox, Eastern Electrics and Sonar, and with second release tickets at only £15, we’re going to be keeping an eye on you until you swap some of your Great British Pounds for one. A larger than life, carbfuelled brunch is advised, doors are at 2pm and you will be expected to not have a stationary moment until 4am. More acts are TBA and we think it’s necessary practice for the endurance you’ll need for those late-night frolics this summer. One thing we all love about the longer days is being able to gallivant from a club and be hit by broad daylight, so what better reason for midweek debauchery? After all, D Tached have a treasure chest of a line-up on 4 June at Sankeys that might momentarily blind you. Their first birthday in February got us sweating over Zed Bias b2b Paleman, but this line-up sees Romare topping the bill with his bouncy, afrocentric rhythms that have seen support from Gilles Peterson and Bonobo. Max Graef and Pedestrian are getting in on the action which means a blend of downtempo hip-hop-infused house and soulful bass, respectively. That’s not even all of the acts and it’s only £10. You’ll then have three days to recuperate and put on a new frock because on 7 June disco young gun Krystal Klear drops his Labour of Love party for the first time in Manchester’s Soup Kitchen – you lucky sods. The blood, sweat and tears began last December and in February saw the debut of Slow to Speak at Glasgow’s Sub Club. This month they’ve invited Jacques Greene whose productions have consistently combined dancefloor-ready rhythms with subtle details and rich, punchy basslines. He dropped his latest EP in April and gave us three tracks of ethereal synths and chopped-up vocals propelled by metallic clangs. Joining Greene is prime selector Jon K, and of course Irishman Krystal Klear will be on the decks, too. £7 advance ticket – be quick. Readers of either a hip-hop, jazz, funk, disco, afrobeat and/or soul disposition will find comfort in the fact that also on 7 June Mr Scruff’s Keep It Unreal monthly residency at Band on the Wall will be celebrating in full pubescent force for its 15th year. Expect a classic mixed bag of goodies for £12. The dancefloor will be allergic to your mobile phone, so keep it away, yeah? Unless you’ve managed to avoid social media, friends, acquaintances and the whole of Manchester, you’re probably aware of the Parklife Weekender bringing its tried and tested line-up to Heaton Park between 7-8 June. You can go with your eyes closed and still trust that any one stage will have at least a little something for your ears to gorge on. All tickets have sold out (apart from Sunday VIP ones, £65) so instead we’ve handpicked some Afterlife shindigs for you to pull your hair over. Born from small midweek parties above a shisha café, Zutekh is one of Manchester’s

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Preview

CLUBS

golden elites when it comes to bookings acts suiting tastes stretching myriad genres. On 7 June they’re calling out to Parklife punters to carry the torch from Heaton Park to 1 Primrose Street (£12) to witness past guest Midland spin a b2b set with master selector Ben UFO. With the latter’s unbreakable reputation as one of the few DJs to make himself a well-known name without fathering any productions, this is some ability we specifically require you to observe for your own good. Support comes from fellow Manchesterbased Meat Free DJs. For those wishing instead to spend the night across the M62, Luna bring Psycatron to Liverpool’s Boutique for a mesmeric evening of techno with enough energy and groove to emanate to the far corners of our island. With praise from the likes of Dave Clarke and John Digweed, this Irish fella makes for a more than suitable alternative to Manchester’s Parklife frolics, especially for £6. Those hell-bent on proving who’s the most resilient dancefloor hopper of the lot will be pleased to know the second round of the Afterlife parties, on 8 June, will provide an opportunity for punters to split their already battered bodies into at least two or more parts. Our pick of the night is headed up by Ame, hosted by Lo-Fi and Unknown at 1 Primrose Street (£10-15). This will be the German duo’s second Manchester visit in three months – but we we’re not complaining. Bonding over Detroit-influenced deep house, the Motor City provides the blueprint for their bold melodic sounds. Joining them is Mano Le Tough who possesses an innate ability to blend headin-the-cloud house with darker vibes, and will no doubt make for a tangible atmosphere that will shake the crowd to the bones. After the storm of techno and house heavyweights, there’s no excuse to ‘have a night in with a takeaway and the telly box’ as DJ Spinna is coming to the Northwest. Brought to you by Hustle and No Fakin at the Shipping Forecast on 13 June (£10) and So Flute and Rag Tag at Dry Bar on 14 June (£6-9), Spinna has a vinyl collection exceeding the number of hot dinners you’ve had to date (probably) and was a key member of the late-90s hip-hop scene. Receiving worldwide acclaim after his tremendous remix of Shaun Escoffery’s Days Like This in 2002, he likes to share the onstage limelight with pals such as DJ Shadow, Cut Chemist, Gilles Peterson, Kenny Dope plus countless other luminaries. Polish off your fanciest kicks for an evening of grooving to funk, R&B, hip-hop, jazz and electronica. Bring a handkerchief too; you’ll break a sweat with all that fancy footwork. Rolling back on the scene after eating all of the Easter eggs, Rubix get in shape for summer with Mark Fanciulli and Martin Buttrich on 21 June at Liverpool’s Nation. Apart from the initial amusement from the latter’s surname, you should be excited for his sparse but complex house productions. You probably know Fanciulli from 2011’s The Tide on Joris Voorn’s Rejected imprint that blew up a few seasons ago. A bit of nostalgia for £12 is good value, wouldn’t you agree? Ticket prices are advance unless otherwise specified; some events may be more on the door

THE SKINNY


Cornerhouse Projects / Ian McKay

Ebb and Flow: A Visual Chronicle of the Changes within Liverpool’s Chinatown

Cornerhouse Cafe/Bar, Manchester, until 17 Jun

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Open Eye Gallery, Liverpool, until 22 Jun

Ah, summer. When you can’t move in Primark for flip-flops even though it’s raining outside and the hottest days are spent in freezing air-conditioned offices with people you despise. Proper holidays involve a plane (or at the very least a tunnel) don’t they? Well let’s face it, even if we had the energy, we’re too broke. There is always the great British seaside. Since the introduction of railways in the mid19th century and the first organised excursions from industrial cities, the seaside has occupied a particular place in the country’s psyche: we love the Wimpy bars and slot machines, faded neons and abandoned lidos. This is the focus for a small exhibition of paintings by Manchesterbased Ian McKay, currently on display on the walls of Cornerhouse’s café and bar as part of their Cornerhouse Projects programme. McKay uses the general format of a landscape, the canvases divided into sand, sea and sky with overlaid printed text – ‘All the fun of the Pier,’ ‘Do not feed the pigeons’ or just simply ‘Sand Sea.’ The text speaks to the postcard clichés of the coast; the paintings use the typefaces found in fish and chip shops or B&B signs. The washed-out colours, however, say volumes about both the jolliness and melancholia of these still sometimes depressed places on the edge, and are based on colour studies the artist makes on his travels.

The faded greens, for example, he observed in Brighton; the light blues come from Scarborough. The paintings, in fact, are just one element of a much larger body of work, including prints, photographs and postcards, by McKay, whose previous career was as an exhibition sign-writer, screen printer and typographer. After being made redundant after 22 years in the industry, McKay started to focus on his own studio work. Remembering childhood trips to Towyn, Abergele, he started to look at the strong seaside photographic tradition in the Northwest from photographers like Martin Parr and Tony Ray-Jones. He began to return to some of these places, taking his own observational images. Particularly influenced by architecture and the colours of broken-down signage, he was also looking at the work of American painters such as Ed Ruscha and Jasper Johns as a starting point for his painted work. Interestingly, McKay now uses vinyl to create the text in his paintings, the very material that put him out of business in the first place. [Sacha Waldron] www.cornerhouse.org

San’s Café, Dock Road (2013)

Ebb and Flow takes us through the history of photographers’ enduring interest in Liverpool’s Chinatown, the oldest in Europe. The exhibition kicks off with a new commission from Jamie Lau, who was invited, despite having no prior knowledge of Liverpool’s Chinatown, to make a body of work based on his initial impressions. His images, often taken at night in a semi-creeping observational style, convey a sense of isolation; peeping through the windows of various takeaways and restaurants, the staff and punters are unaware of his gaze. We spot one man apparently eating alone but then notice his partner’s head amusingly obscured by a large roast duck. The photographs taken in daytime or dusk have a slower, more considered quality. Lau catches the dazzling brilliance of light shining off green supermarket shutters and deep shadows as sunset envelopes the architecture, patterns and dragons. A recent audio-visual archiving project from Liverpool-based duo The Sound Agents (John Campbell and Moira Kenny) occupies the second gallery. Interviews play on a loop alongside two cases with archival material – identity cards, alien stamp books, passports and photographs. Sharing this gallery is Martin Parr, commissioned by Open Eye in 1986 to document the connections between Liverpool and Manchester. He focuses on the Chinese communities and

particularly the rhythms of people’s daily life. The photographs spotlight the older generation: a plump old couple in their living room, older ladies playing Mahjong, and Mr San waving from the door of his café. The upstairs gallery is devoted to Bert Hardy (1913-1995), the prolific press photographer best known for his work with Picture Post. The selection focuses on the Chinese seamen based in the city during WW2. Picture Post did not publish any of the images Hardy took of the seamen, which would have been damaging due to the poor living conditions they reveal. The crew are captured eating, washing, cooking and smoking during their shore leave; they’re packed into hostels or seaman’s boarding houses, sharing bunks, washing in what look like horse troughs. There is some reprieve when out on the streets: we see the men smiling and joking in groups outside shops and pubs, but always with signs of war in the background. The rich, multi-layered narratives are testament to Hardy’s unique style. This is not just an exercise in observation, or even technical prowess – it shows Hardy’s eye for the story and we can read his images like a book. [Sacha Waldron] Tue-Sun 10.30am-5.30pm, Free www.openeye.org.uk

ADVANCE YOUR ART AND DESIGN PRACTICE Liverpool School of Art and Design offers cutting-edge postgraduate programmes which facilitate in-depth engagement with advanced professional practice and lead to further research opportunities (MPhil/PhD). We have places available for a SEPTEMBER START on: MArch (MASTER OF ARCHITECTURE) MA EXHIBITION STUDIES MA FASHION INNOVATION AND REALISATION MA FINE ART MA GRAPHIC DESIGN AND ILLUSTRATION MA URBAN DESIGN All programmes are available in full/part-time modes of study. We also offer a range of competitive bursaries and exciting travel awards.

TO APPLY CONTACT apsadmissions@ljmu.ac.uk or call +44 (0)151 231 5175

ljmu.ac.uk LSAD PG HP 1

June 2014

ART

28/05/2014 13:51

Review

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Photo: The Sound Agents

Seaside Towns, Ian McKay

Photo: Cornerhouse Projects

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June Film Events John Carpenter is all over the Northwest this month, with screenings at The Dancehouse and FACT. There’s also a world premiere in a city centre office block and a classic comedy screening in the open air Chef

Mistaken for Strangers

Chef

Director: Tom Berninger Starring: Tom Berninger, Matt Berninger, The National Released: 27 Jun Certificate: 15

Director: Jon Favreau Starring: Jon Favreau, Sofia Vergara, Scarlett Johansson Released: 27 Jun Certificate: 15

”I feel like I’m on the outside looking in,” opines Tom Berninger, halfway through this brilliantly idiosyncratic documentary of which he is both the director and star. Hired as a roadie for brooding indie rockers The National, a band fronted by his older brother Matt, Tom spends much of the movie enviously orbiting his employers as they bask in the adulation of a devoted fan base and attend private audiences with Barack Obama. The viewer can’t help but share Tom’s sentiments while being shown life on the road from his perspective, but the film takes a disarming turn in its second act. When his immature behaviour results in him being relieved of his services on tour, the kvetching knucklehead returns home to lick his wounds and sift through hours of recently acquired documentary footage. What emerges is a surprisingly weighty meditation on success and self-actualisation that renders Mistaken for Strangers altogether more thoughtful and touching than the average hilarious rockumentary. [Lewis Porteous]

Chef centres on Casper, a cook, once the darling of the LA food scene, who’s stuck in a rut churning out uninspired nosh for his philistine restaurateur paymaster (Dustin Hoffman). Sound familiar? Chef is directed by and stars Jon Favreau, once the darling of the US indie scene (Swingers, Made), who’s now stuck in a rut churning out uninspired movies (Iron Man 2, Cowboys & Aliens) for his philistine paymaster, Hollywood. Favreau’s picture doesn’t represent the filmmaking rehabilitation its meta plot alludes to, but it’s a step in the right direction. Bright and breezy, Chef ’s strongest elements are the blokey kitchen-line banter and the sweetly rendered relationship between Casper and his estranged son, with whom the crestfallen chef goes on the road in a clapped-out taco van to rediscover his culinary mojo. A subplot involving Casper’s social media naïvety and a public spat with a critic lifted straight from Ratatouille, however, is absurd – even more so than the notion Scarlett Johansson’s sommelier would be falling at Casper’s feet. [Jamie Dunn]

Of Horses and Men

Camille Claudel 1915

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Director: Benedict Erlingsson Starring: Ingvar E. Sigurðsson, Charlotte Bøving Released: 13 Jun Certificate: TBC The horse is a decidedly cinematic beast; aesthetically and symbolically rich, its uneasy alliance with man is instantly and almost universally recognisable across cultures and epochs. Traditionally the beast has been sacrificed for art, notably in Tarkovsky’s Andrei Rublev. Horse lovers can rest easy here though: the equine body count may be more than zero on screen, but no animals were actually harmed in the making of this bizarre, offbeat Icelandic gem. A weaving of roughly six vignettes, Of Horses and Men – Iceland’s official submission to the most recent Oscars – deftly crafts a darkly comic portrait of rural Iceland mores. Here, all life revolves around local, wild horses that are seasonally tamed; it’s an idiosyncratically Icelandic way of living. An uneasy triumvirate emerges between the harsh Nordic environs, beast and man: each element primal and civilised to varying degrees. Ultimately, the film is a mediation on our world through an equine gaze, celebrating and critiquing the unequal alliance between horse and human. [Rachel Bowles]

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Director: Bruno Dumont Starring: Juliette Binoche, Jean-Luc Vincent Released: 20 Jun Certificate: TBC The contemporary king of grim French cinema, director Bruno Dumont’s latest, the stark Camille Claudel 1915, is based on personal letters and medical records regarding the lengthy institutionalisation of Camille Claudel (Binoche), the former sculptor who developed schizophrenia. The film follows Camille through her daily banalities, as a stellar Binoche conveys subtleties in even the most vacant stares. Dumont’s casting of non-actors with mental illness doesn’t come across as exploitative as it sounds in theory, though there’s an occasional emphasis on ‘otherness’ conveyed through extended shots of Claudel’s resigned reactions to her fellow inmates’ peculiarities that certainly aggravates. The film stops dead in its tracks with the introduction of stout Catholic brother Paul Claudel (Vincent), a curious result considering that the minimal drama the film has stems from whether his promised visit will actually take place. His extensive intellectual rhapsodising veers the film away from its more complicated and compelling look at a troubled woman silently struggling with how both society and her health have shaped her fate. [Josh Slater-Williams]

Cheap Thrills

Fruitvale Station

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Director: E.L. Katz Starring: Pat Healy, David Koechner, Ethan Embry, Sara Paxton Released: 6 Jun Certificate: 15 How much money would it take to get you to do something totally depraved, like hack off your own finger? Everyone has their price in E.L. Katz’s twisted comedy, as old friends Craig (Healy) and Vince (Embry) are propositioned by a peculiar but loaded couple in a bar and lured into performing increasingly demented stunts, trading dignity for wads of crisp cash. Soon, in ménage-a-madness they return to Colin (Koechner) and Violet’s (Paxton) opulent abode, to perform for more ready money. On a superficial level, Cheap Thrills is exactly that; a low-budget black comedy that delivers knuckle-munching moments of anxiety. Delve a little deeper though, and there is something Darwinian that will resonate with every Generation X-er’s post-recession rawness. These characters are achingly familiar, a reminder that all of us are willing to play our own private, primal games of commerce and sacrifice to get what we want from life. [Kirsty Leckie-Palmer]

46

Review

Director: Ryan Coogler Starring: Michael B Jordan, Melonie Diaz, Octavia Spencer Released: 6 Jun Certificate: 15 The difficulty with dramatising true-life events – particularly incendiary ones from the recent past – is knowing just how much fiction to infuse in that reality. It’s a problem that haunts debut writer-director Ryan Coogler’s otherwise assured depiction of the hours preceding Oscar Grant’s tragic death at the hands of Bay Area Rapid Transit Police on New Year’s Day, 2009. Michael B Jordan plays Grant and we follow his last 24 hours as he struggles to support his young family and kick a life of crime that’s already seen him serve time. Jordan’s subtle performance impresses, and the aesthetic is raw and vital, but there’s clumsiness to the storytelling Fruitvale Station struggles to overcome. There are several scenes of wilful sentimentality, clunky foreshadowing and faintly crass attempts to elevate Grant to martyrdom that really disappoint, given admirable efforts to maintain naturalism and a respectful tone elsewhere. It’s an emotive film about an emotive incident, but an unmolested account of Grant’s demise could have had so much more impact. [Chris Fyvie]

FILM

Words: Simon Bland

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ick of all those blockbustin’ monsters, mutants and superheroes smashing up multiplexes? Well we’ve got a few hidden gems worth hearing about that are sure to provide a nice slice of variety to your cinema summer. First on our radar is a world premier with a twist, as Manchester’s 55 Portland Street is transformed into a pop-up cinema to host director Steve Reeves’ indie thriller Keeping Rosy (world premiere 6 Jun; for further screenings see keepingrosy.com). Starring Maxine Peake and Inbetweeners’ Blake Harrison, this tense psychological drama transports viewers into the shoes of Charlotte (Peake), a London career girl whose high-pressure life starts to disintegrate after she meets a violent security guard (Harrison). With the majority of the film’s action taking place in a high-rise office block, this immersive screening could be a case of life imitating art. Meanwhile, Manchester’s Dancehouse Theatre continues its John Carpenter season with a couple of Kurt Russell-fronted classics. Dystopian actioner Escape from New York kicks things off on 5 Jun, with one-eyed badass Snake Plissken tasked with rescuing the president from a criminally overrun Manhattan. Then, on 26 Jun, Russell loses the eyepatch for a welcome rerun of Big Trouble in Little China, the irresistibly campy and unintentionally hilarious kung fu romp adored by cheap-cinema fanatics everywhere.

Escape from New York

Over in Liverpool, FACT nears the final stretch of its Science Fiction: New Death season, a project designed to inspect our increasingly reliant relationship with technology. Are we living in a science fiction world? To ponder this thought, the cinema hosted a series of classic sci-fi movies, three of which you can catch this month. The 25th anniversary edition of classic manga Akira arrives on 2 Jun, followed by more Carpenter on 9 Jun with the paranoia-fuelled They Live. However, it’s James Cameron’s bulletproof sequel Aliens that visitors selected to end proceedings on 16 Jun. Game over, man. Just can’t resist the summer sun? Well we’ve got that covered too, thanks to a special screening hosted by yours truly. On 5 Jun, The Skinny present a special showing of Billy Wilder’s drag comedy Some Like It Hot as part of Screenfields 2014. Join us on The Lawns for a cold one as Jack Lemmon and Tony Curtis battle it out for the attention of Miss Monroe all for our viewing pleasure. Who said sunshine and cinephiles don’t get on? [Simon Bland]

THE SKINNY


Boomerang!

Delivery Man

The Rocket

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Director: Elia Kazan Starring: Dana Andrews, Lee J. Cobb Released: Out now Certificate: PG

Boomerang!, from 1947, is an early example of ‘docu-noir’ – a subgenre where facts from a real-life incident are used as framework. The street murder of a priest opens the film and sends shockwaves through a small Connecticut town. Police are pressured to issue swift justice, and all witnesses from that night identify an antsy out-of-towner and WWII vet as the gunman. The authorities believe they have the right man, but Dana Andrews’ DA starts to have doubts after meeting the accused in person, and ends up seeking to invalidate the evidence. Shot on location rather than studio sets (another characteristic of docunoir), Elia Kazan’s third feature is a confident affair, bolstered by a particularly strong supporting cast (Lee J. Cobb, Karl Malden) that enriches the margins of this socially conscientious procedural, one that offers a gripping and only occasionally spotty critique of small-town America. [Josh Slater-Williams]

Director: Kim Mordaunt Starring: Sitthiphon Disamoe Released: 30 Jun Certificate: 12

Adding another feckless manchild to his dubious performance portfolio, Delivery Man finds Vince Vaughn in uncharacteristically likeable form. He plays David Wozniak, a big-hearted dupe landed with two paternity bombshells in quick succession: girlfriend Emma (Cobie Smulders) is expecting a baby, and, more improbably, he already has 533 children as a result of sperm donations made 20 years prior. He responds to the latter news by hiring browbeaten best friend and lawyer Brett (Chris Pratt) to fight for his legal right to anonymity, while secretly stalking his surprise brood and staging various interventions. Neither convincing enough to work as drama nor humorous enough to satisfy as comedy, Delivery Man fails to capitalise on its high-concept setup. Supporting characters are acutely onedimensional and plot holes abound; a gushy conclusion. [Chris Buckle]

The Rocket ’s title refers to a traditional Lao festival featured in the film’s final act: a rambunctious celebration people compete to see who can blast their home-made missiles furthest skywards. The plucky efforts of ten-year-old Ahlo, hoping to reverse the bad fortune superstitiously believed to have haunted him since birth, makes for a stirring conclusion to a lively piece of magic realism. Shadowing the film’s feel-good aspects is another, wholly insidious kind of explosive – the innumerable tons of undetonated ordnance that litter Laos as a result of the Vietnam War. Returning to a subject previously examined in his 2007 documentary Bomb Harvest, Australian Kim Mordaunt handles his first foray into fiction filmmaking with considerable skill, sensitively executing sharp shifts in tone (from childish exuberance to stinging tragedy) and eliciting an exceptional performance from first-time actor Sitthiphon Disamoe. [Chris Buckle]

Sullivan’s Travels

Nashville

if....

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Director: Preston Sturges Starring: Joel McCrea, Veronica Lake Released: Out now Certificate: PG Opening with a film-within-a-film’s ending, director and million dollar talent John L. Sullivan (John McCrea) is looking to abandon the mainstream cinema of the Great Depression, the light-hearted diversions of comedies and musicals, and create a masterpiece of contemporary social comment by filming O Brother, Where Art Thou? Ostensibly pampered his entire life, Sullivan sheds his bourgeois threads and dresses as a penniless tramp, planning to infiltrate the miserable existence of America’s poorest. In a downtrodden diner, Sullivan meets “the Girl” (Veronica Lake), a failed actress ready to abandon Hollywood, who takes pity on Sullivan in disguise and buys him some breakfast. Sullivan’s Travels is a classic screwball Hollywood comedy, with snappy lines, slapstick and silly humour that doesn’t let up, even when the film lurches uneasily into tragedy. A seminal postmodern film, Sullivan’s Travels is self-reflexive about Hollywood, cinema and why we watch comedies. [Rachel Bowles]

BOOK OF THE MONTH The Dead Beat

By Doug Johnstone

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Martha Fluke has just been assigned to the ‘dead beat’ – the obituaries desk of an Edinburgh newspaper in decline, and her dead father’s former place of work. As she learns the ropes, hoping to gain a career in journalism, she is drawn further and further into a web of half-truths and white lies which could unravel her sanity, family history, and new career. She discovers some shocking facts about what life was like back in the era of Walkmans and grunge bands. Doug Johnstone’s new novel shows an Edinburgh as seen through the eyes of present-day 20-somethings, and he evokes it vividly. But the other half of the novel is rooted in the indie scene of early 90s Edinburgh, and the interweaving of these periods allows for some masterful suspense. While not as poignant as the magnificent Gone Again, or as unforgettable as the gangster-laden thrill ride of Hit and Run, The Dead Beat still sees Johnstone in fine stride, and in Fluke he has the perfect foil through which to view the bands, songs, technology and culture of his own misspent youth. Her soliloquys on cassettes, The Breeders and Teenage Fanclub charm effortlessly. As ever, Edinburgh is a central character, her geography tightly coiled around the plot’s serpentine twists and turns. This is superior crime fiction, a level up from the repetitive procedurals and thinly-veiled politicising of more mainstream tartan noir. [Bram E. Gieben] Out now, published by Faber and Faber, £12.99

June 2014

Director: Ken Scott Starring: Vince Vaughn, Chris Pratt Released: 9 Jun Certificate: 12

Director: Robert Altman Starring: Lily Tomlin, Keith Carradine Released: 16 Jun Certificate: 15

Nashville, Robert Altman’s 1975 masterpiece set over five days at a country and western festival, is full of contradictions. It’s an epic, running two and a half hours with a cast of two dozen principle actors, yet it’s constructed entirely from small, personal dramas. Each character, be they a C&W diva (Ronee Blakley), a ditzy BBC reporter (Geraldine Chaplin) or a runaway housewife (Barbara Harris), feels fully formed; their individual vignettes, all vital within the giant tapestry, build to a compelling state-of-the-nation address to a country still reeling from Vietnam and Watergate. This is a jigsaw movie that breaks all of cinema’s rules (of narrative, sound, structure) but within the loose sprawl Altman never loses sight of his characters, their passions and their heartbreak. The tunes – it’s basically a musical – are first-rate too. If a fire was ever to engulf the American Film Institute’s archive, this should be one of the first prints pulled from the flames. [Jamie Dunn]

Letters of James Agee to Father Flye

Director: Lindsay Anderson Starring: Malcolm McDowell, David Wood Released: 9 Jun Certificate: 15 Lindsay Anderson’s if... centres on an elite boarding school populated by subservient pupils and fascistic ‘whips’ – head boys who rule the institution with an iron fist. Malcolm McDowell plays Mick Travis, one student who marches to his own drum. It doesn’t take long to spot he’s a troublemaker: his hair is too long, his shoulders too slouched, his walls plastered with iconic figures of rebellion – Guevara and Lenin. Mick targets the school hierarchy for retribution, which is carried out with aplomb in a blistering magical-realist finale. However, the real target here is the British establishment – blithe, complacent and complicit. The film’s beauty is not so much in the anger and passion – though those are powerful enough – but the flourishes and flights of fancy that lift it beyond British social realism and into the realms of the kind of cinema pioneered a decade earlier by the French New Wave: anarchic, funny, and incandescent with rage. [Sam Lewis]

The Four Marys: A Quartet of Contemporary Folk Tales

By James Agee

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The Last Tiger By Tony Black

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By Jean Rafferty

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In one of the later letters of celebrated writer James Agee to his lifelong confidant Father Flye, Agee mentions Montaigne’s essay on his nearperfect, myth-grade friendship with La Boétie, telling Flye that while ‘I have never known anyone, and never expect to, to whom Montaigne’s wonderful essay on friendship could completely apply ... I never expect a relationship dearer to me ... that I have nearly all my life had with you.’ It’s a remark that’s characteristic of the entire collection: loving and open, yet pessimistic and self-pitying. After Agee’s father died, Father Flye, whom he met around age ten at boarding school, became a paternal surrogate. They wrote to each another between 1925, when Agee was in his mid-teens, and 1955, the year of his death. From the beginning, Agee treated Flye as a kind of mirror: the letters are closer to an elongated self-study than a correspondence. But they’re fascinating because the self being studied is contradictory and multitudinous. Agee may have considered himself a failure, but his body of work tells a different story entirely. At the same time, though, the letters show an alcoholic and slothful man reckless with his gifts. You’re left wondering whether the work of Agee’s we do have might have only been the tip of his talent’s iceberg. [Jim Troeltsch] Out now, published by Melville House Publishing, £11.99

Mary, meaning bitter and rebellion, is a name that carries much baggage. We have Mary Magdalene and her namesake, the Mother of God – whores and virgins, those cruel binary stereotypes. Jean Rafferty shows all those vivid hues in between in this quartet of contemporary Scottish folk tales. The third-person prose of a skilled bedtime storyteller lures us into pitch-black fables, with well-formed floral similes running in sync with their themes: ‘vulvular’ petals of lilies, and roses ‘whose ruffled petals... so much resembled the inner crevices of their own bodies.’ Regular acidic twists curdle these tart and bitter stories; they are gutsy and red-blooded with cycle-oflife narratives comparable to George Mackay Brown’s. ‘Do ‘a’ women want a wean?’ the author asks unflinchingly. Why the sea of fertility for some, yet a cruel, childless landscape for others? And how will obsession and longing force her characters to remedy this? Tetralogies can be lopsided, as proved here. The first three stories are merely very good, the titular fourth tale is superb. In it, the plates of myth and legend move above and below each other over centuries. Our famous Mary Queen of Scots with her consorts, linking with a modern Mariana who attends a wonderfully realised Edinburgh Newtown party of such stifling and grotesque pomposity that the famous decapitation sounds preferable. [Alan Bett]

The premise at least is intriguing: a family relocates from Lithuania to Tasmania in 1910. The father is a shepherd, but he’s adept at hunting Tasmanian tigers and is exalted for it. His son, Myko (to which the first-person narrative belongs), is captivated by these semi-mythical beasts and feels compelled to save them from extinction. The tension between father and son is thus pulled taut: the old man trying to make a new life work, the sensitive boy desperate to stop him. The mother, caught between the two, cries a lot. The prose, though, is overcooked, sludgy and over-seasoned with simile: ‘My mother held me, tight as a saddle belt, where I stood. “My Myko… you have come back to me,” she said. I saw her spirits rise, as surely as cream rises to the surface of a milk-pail, but then, suddenly her voice changed.’ In between things ‘suddenly’ happening, the characters shuffle around and talk the plot to each other. For instance, Mother sees Father with his pocketwatch and says, ‘It was your father’s.’ One might assume he already knew that. It’s all symptomatic of a writer who doesn’t trust the reader’s imagination – and without that subtlety, the thing groans beneath its dead weight, descending into melodrama. [Galen O’Hanlon] Out 5 Jun, Published by Cargo Publishing, RRP £8.99

Out 5 Jun, Published by Saraband, RRP £8.99

DVD / BOOKS

Review

47


In Good Company

Interview: Steve Timms

W

hen I last interviewed Richard Gregory – artistic director of Manchester-based Quarantine – he said, “Most theatre bores me silly, and I don’t go very often.” It was fair to say he had a point. “That was a bit harsh wasn’t it?” he admits, “what a curmudgeon!” He confesses to still being a curmudgeon but is clearly passionate about theatre’s possibilities, and reels off a list of artists and companies he particularly admires – one of them being Forced Entertainment. Although the two couldn’t be more different in terms of artistic content, Quarantine and Forced Entertainment have a commonality in that they create a sort of ‘anti-theatre,’ a theatre that rejects the usual signifiers – character, narrative and dramatic structure. “I see theatre as a pretty broad church,” says Gregory, “that has always embraced all kinds of twists and turns of form and the invention of responses to particular time, context and situation. I think there’s room for it all but we seem pretty hung up in Britain on talking about what is

Quarantine – Susan & Darren

and what isn’t art or theatre or whatever, which is a bit tiring as a debate. I don’t really mind how people label what we do – we call it theatre because that’s the tradition it comes from.’ Quarantine have been making and touring original work for the past 16 years. There have been solo journeys in the dark (Something a Taxi Driver Said), a performance inviting one audience to watch another (See-Saw), and an ‘event with dancing,’ staged in one of the cheerfully grubby function rooms of Sasha’s Hotel (Susan & Darren, starring gay dancer Darren Pritchard and his cleaner mum, Susan). Part of Quarantine’s ethos involves ‘a quiet commitment to making intimate with reality.’ This extends to the use of non-professional performers. The company has worked with soldiers, chefs, florists, families, children, pensioners... and rabbits (Old People, Children and Animals). Quarantine productions are usually born of

lengthy research with its participants. So what does working with ordinary people bring to the party? Gregory: “Essentially it’s about not being terribly interested in representation on stage. It’s both an aesthetic and a political choice. I enjoy hearing people speak for themselves and I respond to the human clumsiness and natural grace that can come when someone isn’t trapped by a particular approach or training. Lots of the people who seem to really respond to what we do rarely go to the theatre.” Decades before the flash mob was The Happening – a live art event presented in a spirit of spontaneity. There’s an element of this in Quarantine’s work. Which brings us to latest show Summer., the first part of an ambitious quartet. Autumn., Winter. and Spring. will follow, with all four pieces being presented as a marathon event in 2016. Summer. features another non-professional cast, with stage performers responding to

Photo: Gavin Parry

In the first of a new series circling in on theatre’s most exciting troupes and groups, we decide it’s time that daring company Quarantine, with a seasonal quartet of works commencing this month, were on your radar

questions and instructions they’ve never heard before. “It’s less about randomness than liveness,” says Gregory. “The overall structure of the show will remain pretty much the same at each performance but, as the piece is made out of instructions and tasks that its performers respond to live, inevitably the content will keep on changing. We’re interested in seeing what happens when people respond in the present: those moments of decision and uncertainty – the choices that could go in all kinds of directions.’” The poster for 2005’s Grace featured a Lidl shopping bag, majestically blowing along an empty beach. Visually, it’s a perfect crystallization of the Quarantine world view: beauty can be found in the most ordinary of places. Quarantine’s Summer. runs 5-7 & 11-14 Jun at The Warehouse, Regent Trading Estate, Oldfield Road, Salford www.qtine.com

The Lion King

an instantly captivated audience, as a pageant of wild animals cavort, canter and career their way onto the stage. The scene concludes in a kaleidorrrrr scopic tableau that verges on emotive, the colThis reviewer has a confession to make. Despite lective voice of the ensemble resonating beyond the hype, awards and stream of five-star reviews, the gallery. We are only five minutes in. The Lion King has never been a production at As with any production that defies the ruthe top of my ‘must-see theatre’ list. Admittedly, bric and opens with its climax, The Lion King is not without its flaws: a lacklustre plot meanders Julie Taymor’s innovative use of both mask and to its familiar conclusion, the weaker songs are puppetry has long held intrigue; and there is, of course, a certain amount of desire to engage in a discernible among the show-stoppers, and the spectacle that has captured the hearts of over 65 vocal strength of a certain principle is questionable. These, however, are small complaints in million audience members. But still, the Lyceum the context of Taymor’s vision. The puppetry is would have to wait. It only took a UK tour and a vast internation- breathtaking: humans and animals mingle to create an aesthetic that is simply beautiful. “What al cast to wake me from my ignorant slumber – and an 11ft elephant brushing against my leg as it is wrong with this picture?” Scar asks Zazu as he contemplates a devoid Pride Rock. Nothing, we pushed its way down the aisle of the astonished say. Its broad and colourful brushstrokes are a stalls towards the Empire Theatre stage. The Lion King and his pride have infiltrated Liverpool wonder to behold. [Alecia Marshall] – and they demand your attention. This is a proTue-Sat 7.30pm; Wed, Sat and Sun matinees 2.30pm. duction to savour. £10-£55. Tickets are limited The a cappella opening bars from Gugwana Dlamini (Rafiki) prompt a visceral reaction from Liverpool Empire, until 5 Jul

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Preview

Ordinary Days

Ordinary Days

The King’s Arms, Salford, 16-21 Jun Serendipity is the overriding theme of Adam Gwon’s refreshing new musical, Ordinary Days, which saunters into Salford’s King’s Arms Theatre for a six-day run this month. Performed by Manchester-based company Top Note Arts, Gwon’s lighthearted offering sends its audience to the bustling streets of New York as the lives of four young islanders intersect. Directed by Leah Fogo and underpinned by a score of striking and memorable songs, Ordinary Days explores a series of both humorous and fortuitous events that combine to make even the most unassuming day extraordinary. Audience members are invited to step outside of their daily routine and take a closer look at the bigger picture.

THEATRE

Would-be artist Warren is played by Oliver Yank (no stranger to the King’s Arms Theatre, having performed in Assembled Junk’s Little Shop of Horrors last year), while Aimée Horwich tackles the role of neurotic Modern Lit student, Deb. Matt Concannon adopts the role of easygoing Jason, and Laura Coard completes the quartet as Jason’s troubled girlfriend, Claire. Ordinary Days is the fourth musical to be staged at the Salford pub, which is fast becoming a recognised home of the Northwest’s rapidly growing fringe theatre scene. This is the first time a professional production of this musical has played outside of London, and it’s only its third outing in the UK – don’t miss it. [Alecia Marshall] Preview: 16 Jun, 8pm. Evening performances: 17-21 Jun, 8pm, £12

THE SKINNY

Photo: Martin Ogden

The Lion King


Spotlight: Adam Staunton The Liverpool comic and Maverick Renegade on naff last suppers and fighting small dogs Interview: Debs Marsden Illustration: Vicky Ledsom

A

dam Staunton is a short man from Liverpool with a ridiculously young face, his inner voice far larger than one might first anticipate from someone oddly reminiscent of Elijah Wood after a chemical peel. His passionate rants are sweetly mundane, grimly artful; he’s the kind of man one can easily imagine getting all het up about crisps. Although clips of Staunton’s stand-up are to be found elsewhere on YouTube, a click on his personal account will garner precisely one video, called Set. Which would be all well and good, if it didn’t happen to be an eight-minute clip of him performing nothing more than his daily exercises. Blessed with a disarmingly cherubic appearance, Staunton can run the gamut of emotions, spiralling hastily into a tiny hobbitlike rage if required. This is something he puts to fabulous use alongside Helen Keeler, Danny Sutcliffe and David Stanier in Maverick Renegades, an excellent sketch group that Staunton is almost a quarter of and which can be found living happily in a quiet corner of YouTube, behind a dusty bookcase. He is a thoughtful performer of smiles and warmth with flecks of disdain; he’s quick-thinking, with effortless confidence, and some funny jokes. He’s not very tall, though.

Influences: “Jerry Seinfeld, Dylan Moran and Eddie Pepitone.” First gig: “At my uni at the tail end of 2007, as part of a two-week course. It went brilliantly, because it was full of friends and family. The next 17 gigs did not.” Best gig: “Too many to mention mate. ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D” Worst gig: “See above.” Circuit favourites in the Northwest: “Liam Bolton, Phil Chapman, Ste Porter, Pete Otway, Kate McCabe, Danny Sutcliffe, Phil Ellis and Peter Brush. Oh, and my girlfriend, Helen Keeler.” Favourite venue: “Probably Rob Riley’s Saddleworth gig.” Best heckle: “The old Ray Peacock one where he jokingly flirts with a woman, and when she responds with ‘in

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Beacons Festival 2014 will welcome the very best in cutting edge music and art. Highlights include headline sets by Daughter, Jon Hopkins, Darkside, Action Bronson, Erol Alkan, Daphni, Dixon and The Fall. Special events include British Sea Power performing From the Sea to the Land Beyond, Nightmares on Wax celebrating 25 years, and much more, making this the biggest Beacons line-up yet. Beacons isn't just about music. It's also about top street food, local beer, art, family entertainment, cutting edge cinema and guerrilla theatre, all set in the Yorkshire Dales. Fancy it? We have two pairs of VIP tickets to Beacons Festival up for grabs, plus two ultimate festival survival kits (thanks to ultimatefestivalkit.com).

June 2014

your dreams,’ he says ‘only if I’d been eating a lot of cheese.’” Plans for Edinburgh this year: “To do all the gigs that the better acts aren’t doing, because they’re all in Edinburgh having a big wank.” What are your aspirations? “To live in a one-bedroom apartment in the centre of town above a kebab place.” What would you be doing if you weren’t doing stand-up? “Playing more video games and watching more wrestling.” If you could be haunted by anyone, who would it be and why? “My Grandad. I really miss him.”

meal be? And why are you on death row? “I would have a Dairylea Lunchable, and I would be on death row for first-degree murder.” What’s the largest animal you think you could beat in a fight? No weapons. “A Yorkshire Terrier, which I’d quite enjoy, actually. I hate yappy dogs.” If you lived in medieval times what would you do for a living? “I’d be a peasant, who would sew clothes for nobles and die of consumption at 17.” Question from last month’s Spotlight, Rachel Fairburn: What do you think is on my mantelpiece? “Fuck off, Rachel Fairburn.” Adam Staunton plays Hot Water Comedy Club, in the Holiday Inn, Lime Street, Liverpool, on 14 Jun. Visit www.hotwatercomedy.co.uk for tickets

If you were on death row, what would your last

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COMEDY / COMPETITIONS

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Preview

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Manchester Music Tue 03 Jun RNCM LIVE

BAND ON THE WALL, 19:00–23:00, FREE

Final year students from the RNCM Popular Music degree showcase their final projects. GARY CLARK JR

MANCHESTER ACADEMY, 19:30–23:00, £12.50

Alternative blues singer/actor hailing from Austin, Texas, touring his debut album, Blak and Blu. STUART MCCALLUM

MATT AND PHRED’S JAZZ CLUB, 21:00–00:30, FREE

The Cinematic Orchestra guitarist trying out new material in the realm of beats, electronica, classical orchestration and jazz. GRAHAM PARKER AND THE RUMOUR

THE RITZ, 19:00–23:00, £27.50

The British rock legends reunite for the first time in 30 years, performing a back catalogue of tracks spanning nearly four decades. LITTLE BARRIE

SOUND CONTROL, 19:30–23:00, £10

Nottingham-formed trio (since relocated to London) riding along on a mix of garage rock, r’n’b, surf and psychedelia sounds.

Wed 04 Jun EMA (COLLEEN GREEN)

THE RUBY LOUNGE, 19:30–23:00, £9

South Dakotan artist Erika M. Anderson, aka EMA,takes her City Slang-released second album (and our April album of the month) The Future’s Void out for a live airing. HOWLING BELLS

THE DEAF INSTITUTE, 19:00–23:00, £9

Aussie four-piece fronted by the kitten-sized Juanita Stein, built on gravelly yelps and sexy guitar swirls. MICHAEL CRETU TRIO

MATT AND PHRED’S JAZZ CLUB, 21:00–00:00, FREE

Known for weaving together contemporary, classical, folk and jazz styles, the internationally acclaimed musician and composer, Michael Cretu plays a special show as a trio. SHIELD PATTERNS ALBUM LAUNCH

SOUP KITCHEN, 19:30–22:30, £4

Newly-formed project of Manchester-based artist Claire Brentnall, whose songs are born in cathartic bursts, with subtle poetry intertwined with piano phrases, strings and hypnotic synth patterns. BABY STRANGE

THE CASTLE HOTEL, 19:30–23:00, FREE

FIRST CHOP BREWING ARM, 19:30–22:30, £5

Wed 11 Jun

The Glasgow noisemakers of the tropical thrash variety cart their wares to a gig setting in celebration of the release of their second LP, Youth Culture Forever.

NIGHT AND DAY’S LOCAL SHOWCASE (ARCANE FLUX + SCARLET CASTLES + WE SIGNAL FIRE + ELECTRONIC PIMP) NIGHT AND DAY CAFE, 20:00–02:00, £5

Live music showcase, giving a stage to local up-and-coming performers. BAD MANNERS (SKAFACE)

THE RITZ, 19:00–23:00, £18

Bad Manners churn out the party ska hits, with the larger-than-life Buster Bloodvessel still gurning away at the helm. THURSDAY BASEMENT GIGS (COLTSBLOOD + BASTARD OF THE SKIES + SPACE WITCH + WORT) THE BAY HORSE, 20:00–23:00, £5

Thursday night gigs in The Bay Horse basement, eyes to Facebook for the line-up. P.J. PHILIPSON (PASCAL NICHOLS + RAZ ULLAH)

ST PHILIP’S CHURCH, 20:00–23:00, £4

Manchester-based guitarist and producer P.J. Philipson celebrates the launch of his début solo album, Peaks, built up on stereo delay guitar pieces recorded live in one night. PANGAEA: SUMMER OF LOVE (TALIB KEWLI + GENTLEMAN’S DUB CLUB + RIOT JAZZ BRASS BAND + SHADOW CHILD)

UNIVERSITY OF MANCHESTER STUDENTS’ UNION, 20:00–06:00, £25

Student-run festival now in its ninth year, playing host to some 50 acts spanning dub, bass, electronic, pop, house, metal and disco.

Fri 06 Jun

XFM FIRST FRIDAY (INSPIRAL CARPETS + DANNY MAHON)

BAND ON THE WALL, 21:00–02:00, £SOLD OUT

The gig and club combo night continues, with a headline set from psychedelic Manc rockers, Inspiral Carpets, re-grouped with original singer Stephen Holt. SON LUX (SUN GLITTERS)

THE DEAF INSTITUTE, 19:30–22:30, £7

Post rock/alterntaive hip hop from Ryan Lott, taking to the stage under his Son Lux moniker. GRAMOPHONE JASS BAND

MATT AND PHRED’S JAZZ CLUB, 21:30–01:00, £5

ROYAL NORTHERN COLLEGE OF MUSIC, 19:30–23:00, £12

GORILLA, 19:00–22:00, £9

NIGHT BEATS

ROADHOUSE, 19:30–00:00, £10

Experimental psych-rock/garage/ soul trio from Seattle, led by guitarist and vocalist Lee Blackwell. JOHN RENBOURN AND WIZZ JONES

BAND ON THE WALL, 19:30–23:00, £15

Luminary acoustic guitarist and songwriter John Renbourn, joins forces with Wizz Jones to present an evening of classic Acoustic folk and Blues. THE PHANTOM BAND (PLANK + ALPHA MALE TEA PARTY)

THE DEAF INSTITUTE, 19:30–23:00, £10

Putting various side projects on the back-burner, the group reunite to continue their unholy fusing of indie, folk and krautrock styles. MR G’S BLUES BAND

MATT AND PHRED’S JAZZ CLUB, 21:00–00:30, FREE

Performing an eclectic mix of instantly recognisable songs that charts the influence of blues on contemporary music. SMOKEY BLUE GRASS

TROF NQ, 21:00–01:00, FREE

An evening of live music and DJs spanning folk, Americana, rhythm and blues.

THE ORWELLS

Manchester-based alternative/ experimental psych bunch mark the launch of their album with a live outing in a brewery.

Sat 07 Jun HOZIER

THE DEAF INSTITUTE, 19:30–22:30, £8

Irish soul-meets-blues one-manband, aka Andrew Hozier-Byrne, who joined his first band at the tender age of 15. CHINESE MARBLES

MATT AND PHRED’S JAZZ CLUB, 21:30–01:00, £5

THE POLYPHONIC SPREE

MANCHESTER CLUB ACADEMY, 19:30–23:00, £17.50

Choral symphonic rock outfit hailing from Dallas, Texas, usually made up of a 10-person multi instrumentalist choir, one of which will on’t theremin, obvs.

Sun 08 Jun

CHERIE BEBE’S BURLESQUE REVUE

MATT AND PHRED’S JAZZ CLUB, 19:00–00:00, £8

Bella Donna Berry, Kiki DeVille and, er, Titsalina Bumsquash provide the live cabaret entertainment. PARKLIFE (FOALS + WARPAINT + JON HOPKINS + JAMIE XX + EAST INDIA YOUTH)

HEATON PARK, 11:00–23:00, £SOLD OUT

Returning for its fifth year, the Parklife Weekender pitches up in Heaton Park for another two-day festival of jamz, inevitably resulting in a mass pilgrimage of the student population. Eyes to our club listings for the Afterlife afterparties.

Mon 09 Jun

TARA JANE O’NEIL (ELLE MARY + ROUGH FIELDS + VEI)

THE CASTLE HOTEL, 18:30–22:00, £5 ADV (£7 DOOR)

Bath-based band of brothers who all had previous projects before embracing tropical indie-rock as The Family Rain. GULLIVERS, 19:30–00:00, £8

POND

MANCHESTER ACADEMY 3, 19:30–23:00, £11

Tue 10 Jun

DRY LIVE, 19:00–23:00, £5

Four-peice alternative rock young ‘uns hailing from the Northwest. JULIÁN MAESO IN CONCERT

INSTITUTO CERVANTES, 18:30–21:00, £4

Julián Maeso – formerly of The Sunday Drivers – presents his second solo album, One Way Ticket to Saturn in a concert organised by the Instituto Cervantes Manchester in collaboration with LIPA and AiE en Ruta.

Listings

Baltimore duo composed of Andy Stack and Jenn Wasner, infused with elements of folk, indie rock and dream pop.

NIGHT AND DAY CAFE, 10:00–02:00, £5

Thu 12 Jun

RNCM LIVE SESSIONS PART 2

BAND ON THE WALL, 19:30–23:00, £5 (£3)

Students from the RNCM’s popular music performance degree programme perform their end of year showcase. BRIGHT CLUB

THE DEAF INSTITUTE, 19:30–22:30, £6

A selection of comedic academics do a stint of stand-up for your entertainment and enlightenment. Laughs and learning in one neat package: tick. THE MATT HOLBORN QUARTET

MATT AND PHRED’S JAZZ CLUB, 21:00–00:30, FREE

A newly formed group of musicians playing contemporary gypsy jazz, with violinist Matt Holborn at the helm. RIVAL SONS

GORILLA, 19:30–23:00, £15

Long Beach-hailin’ Californian band of heavyweight rock’n’rollers. THURSDAY BASEMENT GIGS

THE BAY HORSE, 20:00–23:00, £TBC

Thursday night gigs in The Bay Horse basement, eyes to Facebook for the line-up. GEORGE EZRA (PORT ISLA + DANCING YEARS)

MANCHESTER CLUB ACADEMY, 19:30–23:00, £12.50

Young Bristol singer/songwriter known for his bluesy, acoustic balladry. THE PIERCES

MANCHESTER CLUB ACADEMY, 19:30–23:00, £15

ROADHOUSE, 18:30–22:30, £8.50

GO GO PENGUIN (MAMMAL HANDS)

BAND ON THE WALL, 19:30–23:00, £10 EARLYBIRD (£12 THEREAFTER)

Made up of pianist Chris Illingworth, bassist Nick Blacka and drummer Rob Turner, and known for their acoustic electronic sound. THE FEVERS

THE DEAF INSTITUTE, 19:00–22:30, £7

The Brazilian rock bunch, formerly known as The Fenders, play a typical set of electro funk rock you can dance to. FRANNY EUBANK’S THE BLUES

MATT AND PHRED’S JAZZ CLUB, 21:30–01:00, £5

Original Chicago blues from the Manchester-based Franny Eubank – delivering knock out performances with a harmonica and vocals.

SECTION 60 (EMPIRE SIGNAL + DJ PAUL LANGLEY)

NIGHT AND DAY CAFE, 20:00–02:00, £5

Sheffield-based indie five-piece host a World Cup Party with pals Empire Signal, Clay Garden and The Brakes. SCOTT BRADLEE & POSTMODERN JUKEBOX

MANCHESTER CLUB ACADEMY, 19:30–23:00, £10

The New York hailing jazz musician tours with his talented band of musicians, turning songs into ‘malleable globs of silly putty’ as they go. KINGS BAND NIGHT (THE KAPTIVATORS + PETER KASEN + MCCREI + THE RECREATION)

THE KING’S ARMS, 19:30–23:00, £5

An evening of live music from a selection of country bands. YBAS (WEIRD ERA + HORRID)

FIRST CHOP BREWING ARM, 19:30–22:30, £7

Local lads YBAs (Young British Artists) launch their debut album, A Change By Any Other Name.

Trumpeter, composer and arranger Matthew Halsall presents a hometown debut of his latest project, The Gondwana Orchestra.

FREE GIG FRIDAY

THE THOUGHT POLICE (STRANGEWAYS + SONIC PELLET + ACCEPTING APRIL)

Psychedelic acid rock – heavy on the synth ‘n’ fuzz – from the German trio led by Sula Bassana.

WYE OAK

Fri 13 Jun

Australian indie-psych act who share two members with cult Australian quartet Tame Impala.

THE BAY HORSE, 21:00–01:00, £TBC

SOUP KITCHEN, 19:30–22:30, £10

ELECTRIC MOON (BANG)

NIGHT AND DAY CAFE, 20:00–02:00, £10

SOUND CONTROL, 19:00–22:00, £6

Fill your Friday night with free live music – guests and DJs selected by a different band each week. Check facebook for line-ups and prices.

GULLIVERS, 19:30–22:30, £5

Sun 15 Jun

NIGHT AND DAY CAFE, 19:30–02:00, £6

Mancunian pop rock four-piece led by singer Will Sweeny.

Sat 14 Jun

MATT AND PHRED’S JAZZ CLUB, 21:00–00:00, FREE

Alabama-born alternative folk sister duo, seemingly raised on a diet of Joni Mitchell and Simon and Garfunkel.

THE FAMILY RAIN

RNCM LIVE SESSIONS PART 1

BAND ON THE WALL, 19:30–23:00, £5 (£3)

Students from the RNCM’s popular music performance degree programme perform their end of year showcase. THE FAT FACE BAND

MATT AND PHRED’S JAZZ CLUB, 21:00–00:00, FREE

US-based jazz trio performing a variety of New Orleans jazz infused with Americana influences. DAVID GRUBBS

KRAAK, 19:30–23:00, £7

Solo performance from Gastr del Sol, Squirrel Bail and Bastro founding member, David Grubb, also reading from Records Ruin the Landscape on the night. THE FELICE BROTHERS

GORILLA, 19:30–23:00, £14.50

TOGETHER PANGEA (WILD SMILES)

SOUP KITCHEN, 19:30–22:30, £7

Progressive blues trio hailing from London.

PAUL GARNER TRIO

The Portland-based multi-instrumentalist tours her latest album, Where Shine New Lights.

Montreal-based four-piece Hindirock/psych pop outfit, formed in 2009 by sitarist/bassist Rishi Dhir.

WHITE ESKIMO

THE M’GOO PROJECT (MISTY’S BIG ADVENTURE + THE RETAINERS)

MANCHESTER CLUB ACADEMY, 19:30–23:00, £8

Boogie Williams is joined by Alan ‘The Hat’ Whitham on bass and Richard young on drums, playing soul jazz, boogie and 60s groove.

Jazz rock bunch hailing from Manchester and Montreal, placing original music alongside written word, short film and dance.

The London-based duo tour their début album, Oasis.

HEATON PARK, 11:00–23:00, £SOLD OUT

Returning for its fifth year, the Parklife Weekender pitches up in Heaton Park for another two-day festival of jamz, inevitably resulting in a mass pilgrimage of the student population. Eyes to our club listings for the Afterlife afterparties.

Fill your Friday night with free live music – guests and DJs selected by a different band each week. Check facebook for line-ups and prices.

Los Angeles-based trio who made their bones as purveyors of postmillennial punk, with reference to the supersonic 90s rock that first inspired them.

Live music showcase, giving a stage to local up-and-coming performers.

PARKLIFE (SNOOP DOGG + BONOBO + MOUNT KIMBIE + FACTORY FLOOR + KATY B)

ELEPHANT STONE (FORMER BULLIES + TWO SKIES)

Harmony and chorus focused outfit, offering their take on the 90s Americana scene.

THE DEAF INSTITUTE, 19:00–22:30, £9

NIGHT AND DAY’S LOCAL SHOWCASE (FIVE DAYS NORTH + CIRCUS WOLVES )

Raunchy flower punk from the Illinois-residing five-piece outfit, touring with their latest EP, Other Voices, bringing the fresh-faced rock’n’roll energy by the bucket load.

THE BUFFALO RIOT (TINTED LENS + WASHINGTON REED + PORTALIGHTS + STEVE POLAND)

ALPINES (ACRE TARN + GO NATIVE)

Nine-piece jazz line-up, playing a free blend of jazz, funk, soul and ska.

NYC five-piece formed by brothers James and Ian Felice, ready to take you on a mud-stomping folk journey, as is their way.

50

HAPPYNESS THE CASTLE HOTEL, 19:30–23:00, £5

DOUGA (DANIEL LAND)

TWELFTH DAY

Thu 05 Jun

THE BOOGIE WILLIAMS TRIO GRANDE MATT AND PHRED’S JAZZ CLUB, 21:00–00:30, FREE

PAWS

Old-timey Jazz-loving seven-piece from up Glasgow way, known for their Late Night Speakeasy at Henry’s Cellar.

British folk duo made up of Catriona Price on fiddle and vocals, and Esther Swift on harp and vocals.

FREE GIG FRIDAY THE BAY HORSE, 21:00–01:00, £TBC

Jazz guitarist Pat Metheny returns to the stage with his long-standing band, Unity Group.

Hyped Glasgow indie crew with decidedly dark credentials.

FALLOW CAFE, 19:30–23:00, FREE

PAT METHENY UNITY GROUP THE LOWRY: LYRIC THEATRE, 20:00–23:00, FROM £28.50

THIS FEELING (JAKE EVANS + SLYDIGS + THE RELAYS + THIS FEELING DJS)

THE RUBY LOUNGE, 19:30–23:00, £5

The favourited London rock’n’roll night takes a trip North with a selection of live bands taking to the stage. MATT SCHOFIELD

BAND ON THE WALL, 19:30–23:00, £14 EARLYBIRD (£16 THEREAFTER)

British bluesman Matt Schofield does his guitar wizardry thing, playing an intimate set with his live band. FUJIYA & MIYAGI (AK/DK)

THE DEAF INSTITUTE, 19:30–22:30, £10

The Brighton-based trio tour their fifth album, Artificial Sweeteners, continuing their synth line and rich hooks endeavours. HONEYFEET

MATT AND PHRED’S JAZZ CLUB, 21:30–01:00, £5

The Manchester-based six-piece, making raucous and rowdy folkhop, led by the distinct vocals of Rioghnach Connolly.

THE WATCHMAKERS VINYL LAUNCH (BLOSSOMS + RANDOLPH SWAIN & THE RED LIGHTS + INTERSTELLAR OVERDRIVE DJS) NIGHT AND DAY CAFE, 20:00–03:00, £5

Psych four-piece from Manchester, marrying 60s rock’n’roll with alternative influences. GIANT STAR

SOUND CONTROL, 19:30–23:00, £5

Mancunian band, Giant Star celebrate the launch of their album, Year of the Snake.

MATTHEW HALSALL AND THE GONDWANA ORCHESTRA

BAND ON THE WALL, 19:00–23:00, £10 EARLYBIRD (£12 THEREAFTER)

FUCKED UP (CEREBRAL BALLZY + LOWER)

GORILLA, 19:30–23:00, £15

Hardcore punk outfit hailing from Toronto: as brash and ballsy as their name suggests.

Mon 16 Jun

EDWYN COLLINS (COLORAMA)

THE DEAF INSTITUTE, 19:30–23:00, £18

The former Orange Juice frontman returns to the Northwest as part of their 10th birthday celebrations – sounding as fresh as bloody ever, now impressively in his fourth decade of recording. HOLLYWOOD ENDING

SOUND CONTROL, 19:00–23:00, £10

Young pop-rock scamps, taking to the road for what will be their first UK headline tour. EELS

BRIDGEWATER HALL, 19:00–23:00, £25

Virginia’s own tragic hero, aka Mark ‘E’ Everett, and bandmates sing the lo-fi blues – marking the release of their new LP, The Cautionary Tales of Mark Oliver Everett.

NOPE

The Leeds-based super group, featuring members of That Fucking Tank, Hookworms and Cowtown, take their latest album, Walker to a live setting.

Wed 18 Jun NICK OLIVERI

THE DEAF INSTITUTE, 19:30–23:00, £10

Solo project of Ex-Queens of the Stone Age member, embarking on a small European tour, taking to the stage unplugged. STUART MCCALLUM

MATT AND PHRED’S JAZZ CLUB, 21:00–00:30, FREE

The Cinematic Orchestra guitarist trying out new material in the realm of beats, electronica, classical orchestration and jazz.

THE DELINES (THE LOST BROTHERS + AIDAN SMITH) NIGHT AND DAY CAFE, 20:00–02:00, £12

Retro country soul outfit hailing from Portland, formed around Willy Vlautin, otherwise known as the frontman of Richmond Fontaine. ANDY JORDAN (ROOM 94)

MANCHESTER ACADEMY 2, 19:00–23:00, £8

The Made In Chelsea star embarks on his UK mini tour, we’ll do the hiding. IDLE MOMENTS

BLACK DOG BALLROOM NQ, 12:00–17:00, FREE

New monthly speakeasy jazz night, with music, visuals and DJs. KINGS OF LEON

PHONES 4U ARENA, 18:00–23:00, FROM £45

Tennessee-hailing quartet made up of three brothers and a cousin, out and touring their latest LP offering of suitably stadium-sized and chantable choruses. BRAVE BLACK SEA

MANCHESTER ACADEMY 3, 19:30–23:00, £12

Patchwork band made up of exmembers of Kyuss, Queens of the Stone Age and Slo Burn, bringing their rock’n’roll sound from over California way.

Thu 19 Jun ALEXIS TAYLOR

BAND ON THE WALL, 19:30–23:00, £12.50

The Hot Chip co-founder tours his latest solo release, Nayim From the Halfway Line. JURASSIC 5 (UGLY DUCKLING)

MANCHESTER ACADEMY, 19:00–23:00, £25

Perhaps the most revered hip-hop crew of the 90s tour the hits, making five emcees sound like one (aka bow down). KEVIN FIGES QUARTET

MATT AND PHRED’S JAZZ CLUB, 21:00–00:00, FREE

GEORGE BENSON

BRIDGEWATER HALL, 19:30–23:00, FROM £45

R’n’B and jazz-straddling musician whose career spans some five decades. ONCE IN A LIFETIME: THE FINAL TOUR

PHONES 4U ARENA, 19:30–23:00, £42.50

Musical legends The Osmonds, Showaddywaddy, David Essex and Bay City Rollers unite on stage for one last time.

ACOUSTIC AMNESTY (CARWYN ELLIS + MICHELE STODART + CAVAN MORAN + THE LONESOME AND PENNILESS COWBOYS + CHRIS FLYNN + KIERAN KING)

ST PHILIP’S CHURCH, 19:30–23:00, £8

Singers and poets unite for this Amnesty Manchester and Musicians Without Borders charity event.

Sat 21 Jun

LVLS (MERMAIDS + MORNING PILGRAMS)

ROADHOUSE, 19:30–23:00, £5

Manchester-based Loveless present their of dark, shiny pop. GLASS ANIMALS

THE RUBY LOUNGE, 19:30–23:00, £8

Baroque folk trio with distinct pop(ish) influences, launching their new limited-edition double A-side single. PUPPET REBELLION (THE BACKHANDERS + MOSCOW + NO HOT ASHES)

THE DEAF INSTITUTE, 19:00–22:30, £6

The Mancunian indie outfit, known for their half-time performances at Manchester United last summer. SKAMEL

MATT AND PHRED’S JAZZ CLUB, 21:30–01:00, £5

Jazz, ska, dub, reggae and free improvisation from the Manchesterbased Skamel. FÊTE DE LA MUSIQUE (AGUA ROJA + NAKED (ON DRUGS))

KRAAK, 20:30–22:30, FREE

The Alliance Francaise de Manchester present a showcase night featuring bands from both sides of the channel. JUNGFRAUS

THE CASTLE HOTEL, 19:30–23:00, £5

Manchester-based psych pop quintet, touring their debut album FÊTE DE LA MUSIQUE (SONGS FOR WALTER + EMILY ROSE HALL)

THE BAY HORSE, 18:00–20:00, FREE

The Alliance Francaise de Manchester present a showcase night featuring bands from both sides of the channel.

23RD CAREFULLY PLANNED ALLDAYER (SUDDEN SONDER + CECILLE GREY + PEDRO DON KEY + HOT SHORTS + E NUMBERS + AEROPLANE FLIES HIGH + SCREAMING MALDINI + HOT BOTZ BRASS BAND) GULLIVERS, 15:00–23:00, £5

The 23rd Carefully Planned All-Dayer sees the likes of Sudden Sonder and Pedro Don Key provide the entertainment throughout the day – clues in the name.

TROF NQ, 21:00–01:00, FREE

PHONES 4U ARENA, 18:30–22:00, FROM £50

SMOKEY BLUE GRASS

DOLLY PARTON

An evening of live music and DJs spanning folk, Americana, rhythm and blues.

The buxom blonde queen of country-tinged pop works it, 9-5 style, natch.

NIGHT AND DAY CAFE, 19:00–02:00, £TBC

Tue 24 Jun

THE CLOCKTOWER (DIRTY JESUS)

Night and Day host a World Cup party, headlined by indie rock outfit, The Clocktower. THURSDAY BASEMENT GIGS

THE BAY HORSE, 20:00–23:00, £TBC

Thursday night gigs in The Bay Horse basement, eyes to Facebook for the line-up.

Fri 20 Jun NEARLY DAN

BAND ON THE WALL, 19:30–23:00, £13

Steely Dan tribute act.

BAND ON THE WALL, 19:30–23:00, £15

MATT AND PHRED’S JAZZ CLUB, 21:30–01:00, £5

Detroit’s Amp Fiddler – known for his role as the Keyboardist for George Clinton’s P Funk – returns to Manchester for the first time in seven years.

FREE GIG FRIDAY

THE BAY HORSE, 21:00–01:00, £TBC

Fill your Friday night with free live music – guests and DJs selected by a different band each week. Check facebook for line-ups and prices.

Bristol-based quartet fusing a variety of influences to produce highly personal music in a fearless and evolving way.

Tue 17 Jun AMP FIDDLER

Melodic indie-pop from their nativeLondon for a spate of shows in advance of debut full-length release Weird Little Birthday.

TAYLOR JACKSON

Taylor Jackson takes to the stage with her six-piece band, performing a mix of soulful original material along with some classic funk covers.

CHETHAM’S BIG BANDS AND JAZZ ENSEMBLES

BAND ON THE WALL, 19:30–23:00, £10

An evening of contemporary and classic jazz arrangements courtesy of the Chetham’s big bands. BLIND MONK TRIO

MATT AND PHRED’S JAZZ CLUB, 21:00–00:30, FREE

Three Northwest musicians putting a fresh spin on the classic, chordless jazz trio format. GARETH GATES (JAI MCDOWALL)

MANCHESTER ACADEMY 3, 19:30–23:00, £17.50

The former Pop Idol chappie embarks on his UK tour, if anyone’s bovvered.

Wed 25 Jun HOLLY WILLIAMS

THE RUBY LOUNGE, 19:30–23:00, £15

American country musician – granddaughter of Hank Williams, Sr – carving out her own path with her latest release, The Highway. SAMUEL C LEES

MATT AND PHRED’S JAZZ CLUB, 21:00–00:00, FREE

Gypsy guitar playing, emerging as one of the leaders in the UK scene, playing a blend of originals and covers of modern classics.

LUKE ABBOTT (RIVAL CONSOLES + HOWES) KRAAK, 20:00–23:00, £7

The Norwich electronic producer tours new LP, recorded last winter in the middle of the countryside with no mobile phone reception and limited internet access. FIS + KIYOKO + SEERS

SOUP KITCHEN, 19:30–23:00, £5 EARLYBIRD (£7 THEREAFTER)

A trio of Manchester debuts, with New Zealand beatmaker Fis appearing alongside Samurai Music duo Kiyoko and Mancunian collaboration, Seers.

CHUCK RAGAN (NORTHCOTE + BILLY THE KID)

GORILLA, 19:30–23:00, £11

American singer/songwriter of the folk rock variety, formerly of Hot Water Music. THE EAGLES

PHONES 4U ARENA, 20:00–23:00, FROM £50

The longstanding American rockers perform a set of classics (aka Hotel California). CHERRY GHOST

MANCHESTER CATHEDRAL, 19:00–23:00, £15

Bolton-based indie rock fivepiece, touring with their third album, Herd Runners.

Thu 26 Jun THE PAUL FARR BAND

MATT AND PHRED’S JAZZ CLUB, 21:00–00:30, FREE

Manchester native, Paul Farr – known for touring with the likes of Lily Allen and Corinne Bailey-Rae – joined by bandmates John Ellis, Neil Fairclough and Luke Flowers. FOSTER THE PEOPLE

THE RITZ, 19:00–22:00, £17.50

LA-based trio touring in support of their second album, Supermodel. MOD (STAMPIN’ GROUND)

SOUND CONTROL, 19:00–23:00, £12

The New York City-hailing thrash metal outfit MOD (Method of Destruction) take to the stage alongside Cheltenham’s Stampin’ Ground. THURSDAY BASEMENT GIGS

THE BAY HORSE, 20:00–23:00, £TBC

Thursday night gigs in The Bay Horse basement, eyes to Facebook for the line-up.

Fri 27 Jun ALLIGATOR GUMBO

MATT AND PHRED’S JAZZ CLUB, 21:30–01:00, £5

Leeds-based jazz musicians playing a mix of styles inspired by early jazz/swing music in New Orleans – which has surprisingly little to do with large reptilian-based stew. KACEY MUSGRAVES

THE RITZ, 18:30–22:00, £17.50

Young American country music songstress, recently nominated for myriad Country Music Association awards. FREE GIG FRIDAY

THE BAY HORSE, 21:00–01:00, £TBC

Fill your Friday night with free live music – guests and DJs selected by a different band each week. Check facebook for line-ups and prices.

Sat 28 Jun LISAPO

BAND ON THE WALL, 19:00–23:00, £5

An ambitious and inspirational project that will bring together Congolese and other locally-based participants to craft a musical narrative.

GRILLSTOCK (FEDERAL CHARM + ROB HERON AND THE TEAPAD ORCHESTRA + THE FUTURE SHAPE OF SOUND + THE RUEN BROTHERS + VINTAGE TROUBLE) ALBERT SQUARE, 11:00–23:00, £15 (£20 WEEKEND)

Two day festival of meat, music and, er, more meat, with Vintage Trouble headlining Saturday night, and Hayseed Dixie entertaining Sunday crowds.

THE SKINNY


KYLA BROX MATT AND PHRED’S JAZZ CLUB, 21:30–01:00, £5

UK-based blues and soul singer/ songwriter, redefining her sound as a duo performance, joined by Danny Blomeley on guitar.

STRANGE DAYS ALL DAYER (HEAVY TIMES + SEX HANDS + SEIZE THE CHAIR + HOOTON TENNIS CLUB + THE BOOGLYS + BELL PEPPERS + THE BOHOS + THE SLOVAKS + HEY BULLDOG)

KRAAK, 12:00–21:00, £6

Liverpool Music Wed 04 Jun NIGHT BEATS (AL LOVER)

THE SHIPPING FORECAST, 19:30–23:00, £8

Experimental psych-rock/garage/ soul trio from Seattle, led by guitarist and vocalist Lee Blackwell. IAN MCNABB OPEN MIC NIGHT

MATHEW STREET LIVE, 21:00–01:00, FREE

Manchester-based promoters Strange Days host their first all day event with Chicago’s psych/punk quartet Heavy Times making their debut European appearance.

Liverpool-based singer/songwriter and Liverpool Music Award-winner present his new weekly open mic night.

NIGHT AND DAY CAFE, 20:00–02:00, £5

THE KAZIMIER, 19:30–23:00, £SOLD OUT

LITTLE GYPSY (THE SO SO’S + THE MORNING PILGRIMS + SEAN SAVAGE)

Thu 05 Jun FUTURE ISLANDS

Three-piece indie/rock’n’roll band hailing from Stockport, made up of John James on guitar and vocals, Sean Wooller on bass and backing vocals and Jon Coombs on drums and backing vocals.

The mighty Future Islands do their badass new-wave pop thing, with funk-inflected lead singer Sam Herring likely growling his way through the set.

THE RITZ, 19:00–22:30, £26.50

Belfast quartet firmly rooted in the sounds of mid-90s posthardcore.

KENI BURKE AND TOM BROWNE

Soul and funk superstars present a night of non-stop 80s soul classics. SOFAR SOUNDS

SECRET LOCATION, 19:00–22:00, £TBC

The latest in a series of secret house show curated by Sofar, putting bands in living rooms around the city. Sign up at sofarsounds. com to get yerself on the waiting list.

Sun 29 Jun THE DANDY WARHOLS

THE RITZ, 19:00–23:00, £15

The perennial psych-rockers return to Glasgow, touring in support of their new LP, the first single offa which you can download for free at dandywarhols.com.

A PLASTIC ROSE

THE SHIPPING FORECAST, 19:30–23:00, £5

THE POLYPHONIC SPREE (NO MONSTER CLUB)

EAST VILLAGE ARTS CLUB, 19:00–23:00, £15

Choral symphonic rock outfit hailing from Dallas, Texas, usually made up of a 10-person multi instrumentalist choir, one of which will on’t theremin, obvs.

Fri 06 Jun

BITE THE BUFFALO (SANKOFA + HOLLIS BROWN + BANDITO REY)

THE ZANZIBAR CLUB , 19:30–23:00, £5

Scuzzy rock’n’roll leaning sounds from the Bath-based band of brothers, Stos and Miti Goneos. MISTAKES IN THE MEDIA

GRILLSTOCK (RICHIE SYRETT + THE REVEREND PEYTON'S BIG DAMN BAND + THE URBAN VOODOO MACHINE + HAYSEED DIXIE)

Live music, Liverpool.

ALBERT SQUARE, 11:00–17:00, £12 (£20 WEEKEND)

Small Faces tribute act.

ROBBIE WILLIAMS

The genre-hopping London MC/ DJ duo continue with their quest to revamp vintage sounds for the modern ear.

Two day festival of meat, music and, er, more meat, with Vintage Trouble headlining Saturday night, and Hayseed Dixie entertaining Sunday crowds. PHONES 4U ARENA, 19:30–23:00, FROM £55

O2 ACADEMY, 19:00–23:00, £6

SMALL FAKERS

THE CAVERN CLUB, 20:30–23:00, £10

THE CORRESPONDENTS

EAST VILLAGE ARTS CLUB, 19:00–22:00, £8

VERSES

KOROVA, 19:30–23:00, £6

The former Take That-er continues to ride the wave of his profitable solo career, playing tracks offa his new LP, if that kinda thing does it for you.

Brighton rockers of the evocative variety, taking to the road in celebration of the release of their debut LP.

THE LOWRY STUDIO, 20:00–22:30, £12

Sat 07 Jun

MR B THE GENTLEMAN RHYMER

Bringing his unique brand of chap hop (hip hop meets the Queen’s English) to the Northwest as part of his Mad Dogs and Englishmen in the Midsummer tour.

SILICON DREAMS 2014 (TENEK + VILE ELECTRODES + NORTHERN KIND + FUTURE PERFECT + TRACEY ‘ELECTRIC DREAM’ MCKENZIE + DAVE CHARLES)

Mon 30 Jun

The electronic music festival descends on Liverpool, bringing with it the cream of the synth pop crop.

THE INTERNET (ELLI INGRAM)

BAND ON THE WALL, 20:00–23:00, £12

Trip-hop duo, made up of DJ, singer and producer Syd tha Kyd and producer Matt Martians (of OFWGKTA). TUNE-YARDS

GORILLA, 19:00–22:30, £12

Merrill Garbus’ charming lo-fi pop project, inventively bursting with distorted ukulele, horns, bass, drums, and whisper-to-a-scat-rap vocals. ROBBIE WILLIAMS

PHONES 4U ARENA, 19:30–23:00, FROM £55

The former Take That-er continues to ride the wave of his profitable solo career, playing tracks offa his new LP, if that kinda thing does it for you.

Liverpool Music Tue 03 Jun THE STRUTS

ERIC’S LIVE, 20:00–23:00, £5

Indie rock four-piece hailing from Derby, strutting on to the scene as their name suggests. PARRJAZZ (THE ANGRY MEN)

FREDERIKS, 20:30–23:00, £3

The weekly jazz showcase night pitches up in a new home on Hope Street.

June 2014

O2 ACADEMY, 19:00–23:00, £16

SUN ARAW + LARAAJI: THE PLAY ZONE (THE ROYAL WEDDING + JOHN MCGRATH + BLACKHOODS)

THE KAZIMIER, 19:00–23:00, £10

Austinite Cameron Stallones brings his experimental psych dub sounds to Liverpool for an early summer outing. DANIEL BACHMAN (TROUBLE WITH BOOKS)

BOLD STREET COFFEE, 19:30–22:30, £DONATION

The young Fredericksburg musician returns to the UK, bringing with him his mesmeric blend of psychedelic Appalachia, dutifully crafted with acoustic and slide guitar.

WAVE WEEKEND (BLACK DIAMOND + ROOM FOR RENT + JAPENESE SCREEM + PLEASE HEAD NORTH + PADDY CLEGG + NO VACANCY)

EAST VILLAGE ARTS CLUB, 16:00–22:00, £6

FARAH SIRAJ

IAN MCNABB OPEN MIC NIGHT

ST GEORGE’S HALL, 19:30–22:00, £15 (£10)

MATHEW STREET LIVE, 21:00–01:00, FREE

Acclaimed musician makes her UK début as part of the Liverpool Arab Arts Festival, drawing on her varied influences spanning Middle Eastern music, flamenco and pop.

Mon 09 Jun TIR NA NOG

THE LANTERN THEATRE, 19:30–22:00, £12.50

Alt folk outfit formed in 1970 by Leo O’Kelly and Sonny Condell, touring with their first studio album since 1973.

Tue 10 Jun FUNOON WA ALWANE

UNITY THEATRE, 20:00–22:00, £10 (£8)

A Middle Eastern musical showcase, presented by the Funoon Dance Company as part of the Liverpool Arab Arts Festival. PARRJAZZ (ANTHONY KINSEY)

FREDERIKS, 20:30–23:00, £3

The weekly jazz showcase night pitches up in a new home on Hope Street.

Wed 11 Jun

IAN MCNABB OPEN MIC NIGHT

MATHEW STREET LIVE, 21:00–01:00, FREE

Liverpool-based singer/songwriter and Liverpool Music Award-winner present his new weekly open mic night.

Thu 12 Jun

PANIC ROOM (NEIL CAMPBELL)

THE ZANZIBAR CLUB , 19:30–23:00, £12

Alternative rock of the awardwinning variety, served up with a distinctly sultry edge. NICK OLIVERI

EAST VILLAGE ARTS CLUB, 19:00–23:00, £10

Solo project of Ex-Queens of the Stone Age member, embarking on a small European tour, taking to the stage unplugged.

Fri 13 Jun

GENO WASHINGTON & THE YO YO’S

ERIC’S LIVE, 20:00–23:30, £17.50

The 60s soul man takes it back on the road, cherry picking a set list from his impressive arsenal of eight solo albums. MO KOLOURS

THE KAZIMIER GARDEN, 20:00–03:00, £3

The Mauritian/English musician and producer takes to The Kazimier Garden stage with his shimmering début album.

Sat 14 Jun ROSH

HOUSE, 19:00–23:00, £2

DOLLY PARTON

The buxom blonde queen of country-tinged pop works it, 9-5 style, natch.

Fri 20 Jun THE REAL PEOPLE

O2 ACADEMY, 19:00–23:00, £10

The Liverpudlian Britpop stalwarts play a home turf show with a slightly modified line-up.

Four-piece Brit pop band from Liverpool, fond of catchy choruses and big guitar sounds.

Sun 15 Jun CLUB ORIENTALE

THE LANTERN THEATRE, 19:30–22:00, £8 (£7)

Students from the Sirocco Academy of Egyptian Dance present a kaleidoscopic performance of movement and colour.

Mon 16 Jun

THE ZANZIBAR PRESENTS (INERTIA + AYRIA) THE ZANZIBAR CLUB , 19:00–23:00, £7

The alt-rock venue serves up another showcase event, shining the light on local and national talent.

Tue 17 Jun ANDY JORDAN

O2 ACADEMY, 19:00–23:00, £8

PARRJAZZ (HAROLD SALISBURY)

The weekly jazz showcase night pitches up in a new home on Hope Street.

Wed 18 Jun THE CYBORGS

THE KAZIMIER GARDEN, 19:00–23:00, FREE

Italian cyborg-boogie duo, made up of O on the electric guitar and 1 simultaneously playing the drums and keyboard bass.

WHO BROUGHT THE BEAR?

O2 ACADEMY, 19:00–23:00, £TBC

Indie rock four-piece hailing from the Wirral.

PUNK ROCK PIZZA (THE DOMESTICS + CASUAL NAUSEA + CODE BREAK + BOYCOTT THE BAPTIST) MAGUIRE’S PIZZA BAR, 20:00–23:00, £4 ADV (£5 DOOR)

East Anglian hardcore punk lot, The Domestics, headline the latest Punk Rock Pizza night from Antipop.

Sat 28 Jun EVIL BLIZZARD

THE ZANZIBAR CLUB , 19:30–23:00, £5

Four bass players and a singer drummer make up this Preston/ Birmingham-hailing sonic assault on your eardrums. SHAM 69

ERIC’S LIVE, 20:00–23:30, £12.50

Old school-styled English punk ensemble formed in Hersham way back when (aka 1976).

EAST VILLAGE ARTS CLUB, 19:00–23:00, £13.50

Manchester Clubs

Sat 21 Jun

Tue 03 Jun

CHERRY GHOST

Bolton-based indie rock fivepiece, touring with their third album, Herd Runners.

THE SONGBOOK SESSIONS (DOO DAH FARM + THE JAQUES + CLEVER LITTLE TRAMPS + JENNIFER VAUDREY + THE SCIENCE OF THE LAMPS + CARL HARPER)

THE ZANZIBAR CLUB , 19:30–23:00, £5

A showcase event for new and upcoming songwriters in Liverpool and the surrounding areas.

LIV:BCN (JOANA SERRAT + BEGUN + DJ COCO + GHOSTCHANT + ETCHES + BROKEN MEN)

THE KAZIMIER GARDEN, 15:00–03:00, £12

For this cultural meeting of two cities, Liverpool and Barcelona are set to collide in The Kazimier and adjoining gardens for a celebration of music, food and culture.

AFRICA OYÉ 2014 (FINLEY QUAYE + JUPITER & OKWESS INTERNATIONAL + WARA + HAJAMADAGASCAR) SEFTON PARK, 12:30–21:30, FREE

Africa Oye, the UK’s biggest festival of African music and culture, takes to Sefton Park for its 22nd year, showcasing an eclectic mix of artists and ramping up the vibes with workshops, a DJ tent, an active zone and delicious food from around the world.

ITCHY FEET SUMMER PARTY

MINT LOUNGE, 23:00–03:00, £7

A unique blend of rock’n’roll, funk and swing, engineered to get feet moving. GOLD TEETH

THE DEAF INSTITUTE, 22:00–03:00, £4.50 ADV (£5 DOOR)

Legendary weekly mixed-bag night, often invites use of the term ‘carnage’. STUDENT HOUSE

SOUTH, 23:00–04:00, £2

The weekly student house and techno night returns to South, keeping you on the dancefloor till the early hours.

Wed 04 Jun JUICY

JOSHUA BROOKS, 23:00–03:00, £3

All party, no bullshit night of everything from classic hip-hop to disco and funk. HIGHER GROUND

BLACK DOG BALLROOM NQ, 23:00–04:00, FREE

Sun 22 Jun

Residents Stuart Richards and Joshua Goddard guide us through the mid-week slump, navigating motown, ska and rock’n’roll as they go.

THE KAZIMIER, 19:00–23:00, £12.50

SOUTH, 23:00–04:00, £3 ADV (5 DOOR)

PARQUET COURTS

The NYC ensemble return to the UK, mixing up punk-rock and indie in their own inimitable way.

SEFTON PARK, 12:30–21:30, FREE

REVA (SMALL PRINT)

FREDERIKS, 20:30–23:00, £3

ECHO ARENA, 20:00–23:00, FROM £55

THE KAZIMIER, 19:00–23:00, £12

Four-strong line-up of death metal bands, headlined by American death metalers, Incantation, making their first appearance in Liverpool in their 24 year long career.

EAST VILLAGE ARTS CLUB, 19:00–23:00, £6

Sun 08 Jun The folky singer/songwriter celebrates the relase of her new CD, a collection of unrecorded Sandy Denny songs.

INCANTATION (DIAMANTHIAN + SHEOL + VOLITION)

AFRICA OYÉ 2014 (FINLAY QUAYE + JUPITER & OKWESS INTERNATIONAL + WARA + HAJAMADAGASCAR)

The Made In Chelsea star embarks on his UK mini tour, we’ll do the hiding.

THEA GILMORE

Thu 19 Jun

Young Liverpudlian musician launches his latest EP on the night.

One day mini festival showcasing young up-and-coming talent from Liverpool and the surrounding areas.

EPSTEIN THEATRE, 18:30–21:00, £21.50

Liverpool-based singer/songwriter and Liverpool Music Award-winner present his new weekly open mic night.

Fri 27 Jun

Africa Oye, the UK’s biggest festival of African music and culture, takes to Sefton Park for its 22nd year, showcasingan eclectic mix of artists and ramping up the vibes with workshops, a DJ tent, an active zone and delicious food from around the world.

Mon 23 Jun JASON DERULO

ECHO ARENA, 19:30–23:00, FROM £32

Young Miami-based chart topper of the sexy urban dance and poppy love song variety. Deep stuff, we’re sure.

Tue 24 Jun RADKEY

THE KAZIMIER, 19:00–23:00, £8

Punk trio made up of three brothers, Dee, Isiah and Solomon from Missouri. PARRJAZZ (DAVID KNOPOV)

FREDERIKS, 20:30–23:00, £3

The weekly jazz showcase night pitches up in a new home on Hope Street.

Wed 25 Jun

IAN MCNABB OPEN MIC NIGHT

MATHEW STREET LIVE, 21:00–01:00, FREE

Liverpool-based singer/songwriter and Liverpool Music Award-winner present his new weekly open mic night.

Thu 26 Jun

HISTORY OF THE EAGLES

ECHO ARENA, 20:00–23:00, FROM £55

LORD OF THE TINGS

Varied night of bass, garage, grime, hip hop and house, with Skanky, Eden, Marcx and Architect on the bill.

Thu 05 Jun

REASONS TO BE CHEERFUL

THE DEAF INSTITUTE, 21:00–01:00, FREE

New weekly event, with the ever-charming Duncan from Dutch Uncles taking to the decks for a vinyl-only set of golden age pop and disco. STOP MAKING SENSE

COMMON, 21:00–02:00, FREE

Common’s regular club-in-a-bar night of hipster bullshit, with Mr Seb Valentine, Benatronic & Luke Warm. F//CK

FACTORY 251, 23:00–03:30, £3

Student Thursday-nighter, with resident DJs Steve Davies, Bill Murray’s Rock n Soul club, and Nicola Bear serving up anything from retro classics to electro mash ups across three rooms. SHAKEDOWN

BLACK DOG BALLROOM NQ, 23:00–04:00, FREE

DJ Da Funk taking over the decks for a night of hip-hop, funk and dubstep sounds. MURKAGE

SOUTH, 23:00–04:00, £3

House, hip-hop, grime and garage from the Murkage residents. CACTUS DJS

WALRUS, 20:30–01:00, FREE

CactusMCR DJs delve into their collections to serve up some audio yet untold, with a mish mash of genres taking over the bar area.

Manchester Clubs HIGH JINX (STUART RICHARDS) BLACK DOG BALLROOM NWS, 23:00–04:00, FREE (£4 AFTER MIDNIGHT)

Underdog resident Stuart Richard serves up a healthy mix of old skool hip-hop, house, bashment and bass. NWS FIRST BIRTHDAY (CRAIG CHARLES)

BLACK DOG BALLROOM NWS, 23:00–04:00, GUESTLIST

The New Wakefield Street venue marks its first birthday with a special appearance from Craig Charles.

Fri 06 Jun

TRIBAL SESSIONS (DARIUS SYROSSIAN + SIDNEY CHARLES)

SANKEYS, 22:30–06:00, £10

Leeds-based producer and DJ, Darius Syrossian headlines the latest tribal session, delivering a set of house and techno. TRANSMISSION FUNK (HYBRID THEORY)

JOSHUA BROOKS, 22:00–03:00, £4

Launch party for Transmission Funk, serving up a mix of bass, garage, house and techno. TOP OF THE POPS (LOZ NEWY + JUSTINE ALDERMAN)

MINT LOUNGE, 22:30–04:00, £2

Get your weekend off to a great start with this healthy mix of dancefloor fillers and guilty pleasures served up by residents and guest DJs. REVOLVER

THE DEAF INSTITUTE, 23:00–03:00, £3 ADV (£4 DOOR)

Manchester’s premier 60s party, now a bi-monthly reason to get excited. Expect 60s pop, garage, motown, rock’n’roll. WITCH*UNT (TIMANTI + DISCO MUMS + ELEKTRA ROSE + THE MIGHTY QUINN)

KRAAK, 23:00–04:00, £5 ADV (£7 DOOR)

Old school, hip hop and electro are the focus of this female-fronted club night. WELL FUTURE

COMMON, 21:00–02:00, FREE

Guest DJs on the decks, bringing you music from the past, present, and well, future. MELTING POT

TROF NQ, 21:00–03:00, FREE (£1 AFTER 10PM)

A new Friday-nighter offering up smooth soul and elevating disco. BOOMBOX

TWENTY TWENTY TWO, 21:00–03:00, FREE

David Dunne and Andy Daniels embark on a trip through the 90s, taking in anything from hip hop to house to classic pop. CLUB X OVER

THE RITZ, 22:30–03:30, £4 (£5 AFTER MIDNIGHT)

Monthly alternative club night offering an eclectic mix of rock, grunge, metal, hip hop, industrial and more courtesy of their resident DJs. GOOD VIBES

DRY BAR, 21:00–04:00, FREE

Regular club night, with resident and guest DJs spinning anything from funk and soul to pop and indie. FRI251

FACTORY 251, 23:00–03:00, 99P (£6 AFTER 12)

Student Friday-nighter, with mashups in room one, indie, funk and Motown in room two, and electro house in room three. WHOSAIDWHAT?

BLACK DOG BALLROOM NQ, 22:00–04:00, FREE (BEFORE 11PM)

Regular Saturday-nighter, packed with disco, house and funk, with a dash of hip-hop and reggae for good measure. SOUL BOUTIQUE (AITCH BEE)

UNDERDOG, 22:00–04:00, £8

Aitch Bee from the all-conquering Soul II Soul grace the decks for the latest instalment of Soul Boutique. DJ DA FUNK

BLACK DOG BALLROOM NWS, 22:00–04:00, FREE (BEFORE 11PM)

An eclectic mix of genres, with DJ Da Funk bringing a seamless blend of house, hip hop and dubstep sounds until the smaller hours.

Sat 07 Jun

AFTERLIFE: SANKEYS (EATS EVERYTHING B2B CATZ N DOGZ + ROUTE 94 + HANNAH WANTS)

SANKEYS, 22:00–05:00, £SOLD OUT

Official Parklife afterparty, with a selection of guests and resident DJs on the line-up.

AFTERLIFE: PURP AND SOUL (BEN PEARCE + MARK WELLS + 2ND SUN + JOUHL) JOSHUA BROOKS, 22:00–04:00, £12 EARLYBIRD (£15 THEREAFTER)

Official Parklife afterparty, with a selection of guests and resident DJs on the line-up.

AFTERLIFE: D-TACHED (PALEMAN + RICH REASON + ARDSTEPZ)

ROADHOUSE, 22:00–04:00, £10 EARLYBIRD (£12 THEREAFTER)

Official Parklife afterparty, with a selection of guests and resident DJs on the line-up. FUNKADEMIA (SI FORESTIERO)

MINT LOUNGE, 22:30–04:00, £5 ADV (£6 DOOR)

Mancunian nightclub institution – delivering a chronological history of soul on a weekly basis, courtesy of their DJ collective. REMAKE REMODEL

THE RUBY LOUNGE, 23:00–03:00, £4 (£3)

A night of alternative rock’n’roll shenanigans.

MR SCRUFF KEEP IT UNREAL 15TH ANNIVERSARY

BAND ON THE WALL, 22:00–03:00, £12

DJ set from the musical mastermind, known for mixing a junkshop bag of sounds and bringing his beats to life with squiggly, scribbled animations – marking 15 years with a special edition of the much-loved night.

AFTERLIFE: GOLD TEETH (CITIZEN + GIN & CHRONIC + DADDY LONG LEGS)

THE DEAF INSTITUTE, 22:00–04:00, £8 EARLYBIRD (£10 THEREAFTER)

Official Parklife afterparty, with a selection of guests and resident DJs on the line-up.

AFTERLIFE: LOST CONTROL (HAPPA + LOMAS) KRAAK, 22:00–04:00, £8 EARLYBIRD (£10 THEREAFTER)

Official Parklife afterparty, with a selection of guests and resident DJs on the line-up. FRIENDS IN COMMON

COMMON, 21:00–02:00, FREE

Common invite their buddies to take over the decks.

AFTERLIFE: BASS FACE & AWAKEN (T.WILLIAMS + MADEN + KAM + LEWIS POTTS) GORILLA, 22:00–04:00, £8 EARLYBIRD (£10 THEREAFTER)

Official Parklife afterparty, with a selection of guests and resident DJs on the line-up. AFTERLIFE: HERE’S ONE I MADE EARLIER (HENRY BIRD + ROSS DUPREE + HOLSTER)

TROF NQ, 22:00–03:00, £3 EARLYBIRD (£5 THEREAFTER)

Official Parklife afterparty, with a selection of guests and resident DJs on the line-up. WOO HAH

TROF NQ, 21:00–03:00, FREE (£1 AFTER 10PM)

New Saturday-nighter spanning old school, hip-hop, soul and funk. BEATS, BATS & BEERS

TWENTY TWENTY TWO, 21:00–03:00, FREE

Mark Webster and his chums play their take on soul, boogie, funk and alternative pop treasures, providing ample soundtrack to your beer-fuelled ping pong session. ANTICS (THE UNKINDNESS OF RAVENS + HOT VESTRY + POPHYSTERIAVICTIM + ANTICS DJS)

NIGHT AND DAY CAFE, 20:00–03:00, £5

Niche club night pairing indieelectro/surf/psych DJ sets and live music.

AFTERLIFE: HIT&RUN (WILKINSON + B.TRAITS + MY NU LENG)

SOUND CONTROL, 22:00–04:00, £12 EARLYBIRD (£15 THEREAFTER)

Official Parklife afterparty, with a selection of guests and resident DJs on the line-up. 24 HOUR POP PARTY

DRY BAR, 22:00–04:00, FREE

Weekly club night, with resident DJ Tom Bonnanza playing a mix of classics and new music.

AFTERLIFE: JUST SKANK (FRED V & GRAFIX + SALVAGE) DRY LIVE, 22:00–04:00, £8 EARLYBIRD (£10 THEREAFTER)

Official Parklife afterparty, with a selection of guests and resident DJs on the line-up. FACTORY SATURDAYS

FACTORY 251, 23:00–03:00, £2

Three rooms of commercial dance, indie and deep house, powered by funktion one sound. DJ DA FUNK

BLACK DOG BALLROOM NQ, 22:00–04:00, FREE (BEFORE 11PM)

An eclectic mix of genres, with DJ Da Funk bringing a seamless blend of house, hip hop and dubstep sounds until the smaller hours. AFTERLIFE: RUM & BASS (KIDNAP KID + KINYUME + CASSIO CO)

ANTWERP MANSION, 22:00–04:00, £10 EARLYBIRD (£12 THEREAFTER)

Official Parklife afterparty, with a selection of guests and resident DJs on the line-up. AFTERLIFE: KIDS NOWADAYS + FRANK! (MARIBOU STATE + SIAN BENNETT + DISCO STU)

UNDERDOG, 22:00–04:00, £10 EARLYBIRD (£12 THEREAFTER)

Official Parklife afterparty, with a selection of guests and resident DJs on the line-up. CLINT BOON

SOUTH, 23:00–04:00, £5

Mixed-bag night from local DJ ledge Clint Boon.

AFTERLIFE: WHY ALWAYS ME (N.A.N.C.Y + SZANJA + STRICTLY UNDERGROUND DJS) 256, 21:00–03:00, £4 EARLYBIRD (£5 THEREAFTER)

Official Parklife afterparty, with a selection of guests and resident DJs on the line-up.

AFTERLIFE: HOT CREATIONS (JAMIE JONES + LEE FOSS + RICHY AHMED)

ALBERT HALL, 22:00–04:00, £19.50 EARLYBIRD (£22.50 THEREAFTER)

Official Parklife afterparty, with a selection of guests and resident DJs on the line-up. AFTERLIFE: OUSE (BREACH + JUS JORGE + DJ MURR)

VENUS, 22:00–06:00, £10 EARLYBIRD (£12 THEREAFTER)

Official Parklife afterparty, with a selection of guests and resident DJs on the line-up. APOCA-LOCK-N-LOAD (FAR TOO LOUD + WORKSHY RENE + MEL-LOW D + JANE DALTON + THE IMPERATRIXX)

ZOMBIE SHACK, 22:00–03:00, £7 ADV (£9 DOOR)

A mixed up night of electrohouse and filthy bass at Manchester’s Zombie Shack (formerly The Attic), a new rave-cave space serving the student population. AFTERLIFE: ZUTEKH (BEN UFO B2B MIDLAND + BURTON JOYCE)

1 PRIMROSE STREET, 22:00–04:00, £12 EARLYBIRD (£15 THEREAFTER)

Official Parklife afterparty, with a selection of guests and resident DJs on the line-up. JACOB COID

BLACK DOG BALLROOM NWS, 23:00–04:00, £TBC

Rebel Music’s Jacob Coid supplies an unpredictable mix of his left-ofcentre collection, featuring Dylan to Dre, the Strokes to Snoop Dogg, Bowie to the Beastie Boys and anything in between.

Sun 08 Jun

AFTERLIFE: MUSIC IS LOVE (NINA KRAVIZ + ANGUS JEFFORD + OLI FURNESS)

SANKEYS, 22:00–04:00, £15 EARLYBIRD (£17 THEREAFTER)

Official Parklife afterparty, with a selection of guests and resident DJs on the line-up.

AFTERLIFE: KRANKBROTHER (TENSNAKE + KRANKBROTHER + KAPICHE) JOSHUA BROOKS, 22:00–04:00, £12 EARLYBIRD (£15 THEREAFTER)

Official Parklife afterparty, with a selection of guests and resident DJs on the line-up.

AFTERLIFE: STEVIE WONDERLAND (JAZZIE B + JONNY BOTTOMLEY + DISCO HUGH)

ROADHOUSE, 22:00–04:00, £12 EARLYBIRD (£15 THEREAFTER)

Official Parklife afterparty, with a selection of guests and resident DJs on the line-up.

The longstanding American rockers perform a set of classics (aka Hotel California).

Listings

51


Manchester Clubs AFTERLIFE: METROPOLIS (MISTAJAM + GOTSOME + NORTH BASE)

AFTERLIFE: LO-FI + UNKNOWN (AME + MANO LE TOUGH + WILLOW)

MINT LOUNGE, 22:00–04:00, £12 EARLYBIRD (£15 THEREAFTER)

1 PRIMROSE STREET, 22:00–04:00, £12 EARLYBIRD (£15 THEREAFTER)

Official Parklife afterparty, with a selection of guests and resident DJs on the line-up.

AFTERLIFE: JUICY (DAVID RODIGAN + OSCAR WILDSTYLE + WIGGIE SMALLS)

TOP OF THE POPS (CHRISTOPHER DRESDEN STYLES + GUS GORMAN) MINT LOUNGE, 22:30–03:30, £2

Get your weekend off to a great start with this healthy mix of dancefloor fillers and guilty pleasures served up by residents and guest DJs.

Official Parklife afterparty, with a selection of guests and resident DJs on the line-up.

Official Parklife afterparty, with a selection of guests and resident DJs on the line-up. AFTERLIFE: RUM & BASS (WAZE & ODYSSEY + KINYUME + CASSIO CO)

TwentyTwentyTwo.co.uk

Tue 10 Jun GOLD TEETH

THE DEAF INSTITUTE, 22:00–03:00, £4.50 ADV (£5 DOOR)

Legendary weekly mixed-bag night, often invites use of the term ‘carnage’. STUDENT HOUSE

SOUTH, 23:00–04:00, £2

The weekly student house and techno night returns to South, keeping you on the dancefloor till the early hours.

Wed 11 Jun HIGHER GROUND

BLACK DOG BALLROOM NQ, 23:00–04:00, FREE

Residents Stuart Richards and Joshua Goddard guide us through the mid-week slump, navigating motown, ska and rock’n’roll as they go.

Thu 12 Jun

REASONS TO BE CHEERFUL

THE DEAF INSTITUTE, 21:00–01:00, FREE

PUMPING IRON

COMMON, 21:00–02:00, FREE (£2 AFTER 10)

Mixed-bag night of nu cosmic Italio, vintage avant garde disco and lo-fi rhythmic punk funk. STOP MAKING SENSE

COMMON, 21:00–02:00, FREE

Underdog resident Stuart Richard serves up a healthy mix of old skool hip-hop, house, bashment and bass.

GORILLA, 23:00–04:00, £3 ADV (£5 DOOR)

SOUTH, 23:00–04:00, £5

JUICY

All party, no bullshit night of everything from classic hip-hop to disco and funk. MELTING POT

TROF NQ, 21:00–03:00, FREE (£1 AFTER 10PM)

A new Friday-nighter offering up smooth soul and elevating disco. BOOMBOX

TWENTY TWENTY TWO, 21:00–03:00, FREE

CACTUS DJS

CactusMCR DJs delve into their collections to serve up some audio yet untold, with a mish mash of genres taking over the bar area. HIGH JINX (STUART RICHARDS)

BLACK DOG BALLROOM NWS, 23:00–04:00, FREE (£4 AFTER MIDNIGHT)

Underdog resident Stuart Richard serves up a healthy mix of old skool hip-hop, house, bashment and bass.

Fri 13 Jun

SANKEYS’ CLOSING PARTY (PART 1)

SANKEYS, 22:30–06:30, £10

Epic two-part party to say farewell to Sankeys before the crew head out to Ibiza.

Student Friday-nighter, with mashups in room one, indie, funk and Motown in room two, and electro house in room three. WHOSAIDWHAT?

BLACK DOG BALLROOM NQ, 22:00–04:00, FREE (BEFORE 11PM)

Regular Saturday-nighter, packed with disco, house and funk, with a dash of hip-hop and reggae for good measure. OVERPROOF

UNDERDOG, 23:00–04:00, £3 ADV

A night of full strength Overproof sound spanning dancehall, bashment and Afro-beat, complete with all the bells and whistles – literally – plus horns, inflatables and rum punch. DJ DA FUNK

BLACK DOG BALLROOM NWS, 22:00–04:00, FREE (BEFORE 11PM)

An eclectic mix of genres, with DJ Da Funk bringing a seamless blend of house, hip hop and dubstep sounds until the smaller hours.

Sat 14 Jun

SANKEYS’ CLOSING PARTY (PART 2)

SANKEYS, 22:30–06:30, £10

Epic two-part party to say farewell to Sankeys before the crew head out to Ibiza.

Mixed-bag night from local DJ ledge Clint Boon. JACOB COID

BLACK DOG BALLROOM NWS, 23:00–04:00, £TBC

Rebel Music’s Jacob Coid supplies an unpredictable mix of his left-ofcentre collection, featuring Dylan to Dre, the Strokes to Snoop Dogg, Bowie to the Beastie Boys and anything in between.

Sun 15 Jun HAXAN

COMMON, 16:00–00:00, FREE

Michael Holland and Boomkat’s Conor, dishing up radiophonic disco and film score techno.

Tue 17 Jun GOLD TEETH

THE DEAF INSTITUTE, 22:00–03:00, £4.50 ADV (£5 DOOR)

Legendary weekly mixed-bag night, often invites use of the term ‘carnage’. STUDENT HOUSE

SOUTH, 23:00–04:00, £2

The weekly student house and techno night returns to South, keeping you on the dancefloor till the early hours.

Wed 18 Jun HIGHER GROUND

BLACK DOG BALLROOM NQ, 23:00–04:00, FREE

Residents Stuart Richards and Joshua Goddard guide us through the mid-week slump, navigating motown, ska and rock’n’roll as they go.

Thu 19 Jun

REASONS TO BE CHEERFUL

THE DEAF INSTITUTE, 21:00–01:00, FREE

New weekly event, with the ever-charming Duncan from Dutch Uncles taking to the decks for a vinyl-only set of golden age pop and disco.

Free entry every Saturday 52

Listings

Underdog resident Stuart Richard serves up a healthy mix of old skool hip-hop, house, bashment and bass.

Fri 20 Jun

THIRDEYE (CRISTOPH)

JOSHUA BROOKS, 23:00–04:00, £9

Thirdeye mark their launch with Geordie DJ, Chistoph, known for his DJ sets spanning house, tech house and techno. TOP OF THE POPS (ACROSS THE TRACKS)

MINT LOUNGE, 22:30–03:30, £2

Get your weekend off to a great start with this healthy mix of dancefloor fillers and guilty pleasures served up by residents and guest DJs. DUSK TILL DAWN

THE RUBY LOUNGE, 23:30–03:00, £5 (£4)

Tequila drenched night of classic sleaze and hard rock – expect Aerosmith, Motley Crue and Misfits to name a few. UPTOWN

THE DEAF INSTITUTE, 22:00–03:00, £3 ADV (£5 DOOR)

A new night landing at Deaf, offering up the best in disco, funk, boogie and party classics. STOP MAKING SENSE

COMMON, 21:00–02:00, FREE

Common’s regular club-in-a-bar night of hipster bullshit, with Mr Seb Valentine, Benatronic & Luke Warm.

THE DEAF INSTITUTE, 23:00–03:00, £3 ADV (£4 DOOR)

F//CK

FRIENDS IN COMMON

COMMON, 21:00–02:00, FREE (£2 AFTER 10)

Common invite their buddies to take over the decks.

Student Thursday-nighter, with resident DJs Steve Davies, Bill Murray’s Rock n Soul club, and Nicola Bear serving up anything from retro classics to electro mash ups across three rooms. SHAKEDOWN

WOO HAH

BLACK DOG BALLROOM NQ, 23:00–04:00, FREE

TROF NQ, 21:00–03:00, FREE (£1 AFTER 10PM)

Student Friday-nighter, with mashups in room one, indie, funk and Motown in room two, and electro house in room three. WHOSAIDWHAT?

BLACK DOG BALLROOM NQ, 22:00–04:00, FREE (BEFORE 11PM)

Regular Saturday-nighter, packed with disco, house and funk, with a dash of hip-hop and reggae for good measure. GLITCH (MARK WELLS)

UNDERDOG, 22:00–04:00, £5

New deep house night Glitch kicks off with a headline set from Purp and Soul’s Mark Wells.

FACTORY SATURDAYS

FACTORY 251, 23:00–03:00, £2

Three rooms of commercial dance, indie and deep house, powered by funktion one sound.

House, hip-hop, grime and garage from the Murkage residents.

Mancunian nightclub institution – delivering a chronological history of soul on a weekly basis, courtesy of their DJ collective.

HIGH JINX (STUART RICHARDS)

THE DEAF INSTITUTE, 22:00–04:00, £4.50 ADV (£5 DOOR)

Underdog resident Stuart Richard serves up a healthy mix of old skool hip-hop, house, bashment and bass.

An eclectic mix of genres, with DJ Da Funk bringing a seamless blend of house, hip hop and dubstep sounds until the smaller hours.

Fri 27 Jun

HIGH JINX

CASSINI SUMMER SESSIONS 02 (LUKE WARREN + HARRISON + HEW CASSINI)

UNDERDOG, 23:00–04:00, FREE (£4 AFTER MIDNIGHT)

Underdog resident Stuart Richard serves up a healthy mix of old skool hip-hop, house, bashment and bass.

FUNKADEMIA (LES CROASDAILE)

WALRUS, 20:30–01:00, FREE

CactusMCR DJs delve into their collections to serve up some audio yet untold, with a mish mash of genres taking over the bar area. BLACK DOG BALLROOM NWS, 23:00–04:00, FREE (£4 AFTER MIDNIGHT)

DJ DA FUNK

BLACK DOG BALLROOM NQ, 22:00–04:00, FREE (BEFORE 11PM)

JOSHUA BROOKS, 23:00–04:00, £3

Techno night set to work your senses overtime, with meticulous attention played to music and lights.

POP

Pop classics in the music hall and glitzy girly disco in the main bar – all of which is designed to keep you dancing all night. DANCERS WANTED (LUV*JAM + RUF DUG)

SOUP KITCHEN, 22:00–03:00, £5

Ruf Kutz label head, Ruf Dug branches out on his lonesome to pioneer his Dancers Wanted clubnight, serving up lush Balearic vibes to help y’all get a sweat on. FRIENDS IN COMMON

COMMON, 21:00–02:00, FREE (£2 AFTER 10)

Common invite their buddies to take over the decks. WOO HAH

Free entry all night

TROF NQ, 21:00–03:00, FREE (£1 AFTER 10PM)

New Saturday-nighter spanning old school, hip-hop, soul and funk. BEATS, BATS & BEERS

TWENTY TWENTY TWO, 21:00–03:00, FREE

TwentyTwentyTwo.co.uk

CLINT BOON SOUTH, 23:00–04:00, £5

Mixed-bag night from local DJ ledge Clint Boon. JACOB COID

BLACK DOG BALLROOM NWS, 23:00–04:00, £TBC

Rebel Music’s Jacob Coid supplies an unpredictable mix of his left-ofcentre collection, featuring Dylan to Dre, the Strokes to Snoop Dogg, Bowie to the Beastie Boys and anything in between.

Tue 24 Jun GOLD TEETH

Mark Webster and his chums play their take on soul, boogie, funk and alternative pop treasures, providing ample soundtrack to your beer-fuelled ping pong session. FACTORY SATURDAYS

FACTORY 251, 23:00–03:00, £2

Three rooms of commercial dance, indie and deep house, powered by funktion one sound.

Beats, Bats & Beers Every Saturday — A musical outing soundtracked by House, Disco & Pop Obscurities

Legendary weekly mixed-bag night, often invites use of the term ‘carnage’.

TwentyTwentyTwo.co.uk

DJ DA FUNK

BLACK DOG BALLROOM NWS, 22:00–04:00, FREE (BEFORE 11PM)

CACTUS DJS

THE DEAF INSTITUTE, 22:00–03:00, £4.50 ADV (£5 DOOR)

4pm — 3am

Regular Saturday-nighter, packed with disco, house and funk, with a dash of hip-hop and reggae for good measure.

MINT LOUNGE, 22:30–03:30, £5 ADV (£6 DOOR)

MURKAGE

THE RITZ, 22:30–03:30, £8

FRI251

BLACK DOG BALLROOM NQ, 22:00–04:00, FREE (BEFORE 11PM)

Sat 28 Jun

A new Friday-nighter offering up smooth soul and elevating disco.

FACTORY 251, 23:00–03:00, 99P (£6 AFTER 12)

Student Friday-nighter, with mashups in room one, indie, funk and Motown in room two, and electro house in room three.

SOUTH, 23:00–04:00, £3

BEATS, BATS & BEERS

MELTING POT

A new club night sweeping the nation, offering up nothing but power ballads. It’s like one big communal karaoke night.

FRI251

FACTORY 251, 23:00–03:00, 99P (£6 AFTER 12)

TWENTY TWENTY TWO, 21:00–03:00, FREE

Mark Webster and his chums play their take on soul, boogie, funk and alternative pop treasures, providing ample soundtrack to your beer-fuelled ping pong session.

TROF NQ, 21:00–03:00, FREE (£1 AFTER 10PM)

ULTIMATE POWER

Club night celebrating Manchester’s icons, of the past, present and future – expect The Smiths, Happy Mondays and James to name but a few.

An eclectic mix of genres, with DJ Da Funk bringing a seamless blend of house, hip hop and dubstep sounds until the smaller hours.

Guest DJs on the decks, bringing you music from the past, present, and well, future.

TWENTY TWENTY TWO, 21:00–03:00, FREE

FOREVER

DRY LIVE, 23:00–04:00, £5

DJ Da Funk taking over the decks for a night of hip-hop, funk and dubstep sounds.

WELL FUTURE

David Dunne and Andy Daniels embark on a trip through the 90s, taking in anything from hip hop to house to classic pop.

BOOMBOX

TWENTY TWENTY TWO, 21:00–03:00, FREE

David Dunne and Andy Daniels embark on a trip through the 90s, taking in anything from hip hop to house to classic pop.

New Saturday-nighter spanning old school, hip-hop, soul and funk.

COMMON, 21:00–02:00, FREE (£2 AFTER 10)

BOOMBOX

Another Mof Glimmers night, serving up block party essentials with free house punch ‘til it’s gone.

WHOSAIDWHAT?

FACTORY 251, 23:00–03:30, £3

&

SOUTH, 23:00–04:00, £3

FRI251

CLINT BOON

Manchester’s premier 60s party, now a bi-monthly reason to get excited. Expect 60s pop, garage, motown, rock’n’roll.

HIGH JINX (STUART RICHARDS)

S

MURKAGE

HIGH JINX

UNDERDOG, 23:00–04:00, FREE (£4 AFTER MIDNIGHT)

BLACK DOG BALLROOM NWS, 23:00–04:00, FREE (£4 AFTER MIDNIGHT)

REVOLVER

S

BLACK DOG BALLROOM NQ, 23:00–04:00, FREE

DJ Da Funk taking over the decks for a night of hip-hop, funk and dubstep sounds.

An eclectic mix of genres, with DJ Da Funk bringing a seamless blend of house, hip hop and dubstep sounds until the smaller hours.

CactusMCR DJs delve into their collections to serve up some audio yet untold, with a mish mash of genres taking over the bar area.

THE DEAF INSTITUTE, 21:00–01:00, FREE

New weekly event, with the ever-charming Duncan from Dutch Uncles taking to the decks for a vinyl-only set of golden age pop and disco.

T

SHAKEDOWN

BLACK DOG BALLROOM NQ, 22:00–04:00, FREE (BEFORE 11PM)

Common’s regular club-in-a-bar night of hipster bullshit, with Mr Seb Valentine, Benatronic & Luke Warm.

FACTORY 251, 23:00–03:00, 99P (£6 AFTER 12)

F//CK

DJ DA FUNK

REASONS TO BE CHEERFUL

DJ and actor Craig Charles will be manning the decks until 3am, playing his picks of funk and soul.

S

Official Parklife afterparty, with a selection of guests and resident DJs on the line-up.

Three floor club night touting indie/electro, classic rock’n’roll and punk/rock.

FACTORY 251, 23:00–03:00, £2

Three rooms of commercial dance, indie and deep house, powered by funktion one sound.

WALRUS, 20:30–01:00, FREE

Thu 26 Jun

T

VENUS, 22:00–05:00, £10 EARLYBIRD (£12 THEREAFTER)

THE DEAF INSTITUTE, 22:00–03:00, £5

FACTORY SATURDAYS

CACTUS DJS

CRAIG CHARLES FUNK AND SOUL CLUB

BAND ON THE WALL, 21:00–03:00, £13 EARLYBIRD (£15 THEREAFTER)

A

AFTERLIFE: OUSE (ETON MESSY + JUS JORGE + JAXX)

BARE BONES

FACTORY 251, 23:00–03:30, £3

Student Thursday-nighter, with resident DJs Steve Davies, Bill Murray’s Rock n Soul club, and Nicola Bear serving up anything from retro classics to electro mash ups across three rooms.

WALRUS, 20:30–01:00, FREE

Official Parklife afterparty, with a selection of guests and resident DJs on the line-up.

4pm — 3am

David Dunne and Andy Daniels embark on a trip through the 90s, taking in anything from hip hop to house to classic pop.

AVICI WHITE, 22:00–05:00, £8 EARLYBIRD (£10 THEREAFTER)

ALBERT HALL, 22:00–04:00, £20 EARLYBIRD (£22.50 THEREAFTER)

New underground techno and deep house night hitting the North of England, taking over both rooms at Sound Control.

New weekly event, with the ever-charming Duncan from Dutch Uncles taking to the decks for a vinyl-only set of golden age pop and disco.

House, hip-hop, grime and garage from the Murkage residents.

AFTERLIFE: CROSSTOWN REBELS (DAMIAN LAZARUS + ART DEPARTMENT + DIXON)

Mark Webster and his chums play their take on soul, boogie, funk and alternative pop treasures, providing ample soundtrack to your beer-fuelled ping pong session. SOUND CONTROL, 23:00–04:00, £6

AFTERLIFE: BASS FACE (MADEN + KAM + LEWIS POTTS)

Official Parklife afterparty, with a selection of guests and resident DJs on the line-up.

BEATS, BATS & BEERS

House, hip-hop, grime and garage from the Murkage residents.

Residents Stuart Richards and Joshua Goddard guide us through the mid-week slump, navigating motown, ska and rock’n’roll as they go.

Mancunian nightclub institution – delivering a chronological history of soul on a weekly basis, courtesy of their DJ collective.

R

Official Parklife afterparty, with a selection of guests and resident DJs on the line-up.

New Saturday-nighter spanning old school, hip-hop, soul and funk.

MURKAGE

MINT LOUNGE, 22:30–03:30, £5 ADV (£6 DOOR)

A

SOUTH, 22:00–04:00, £12 EARLYBIRD (£15 THEREAFTER)

SOUTH, 23:00–04:00, £3

BLACK DOG BALLROOM NQ, 23:00–04:00, FREE

E

AFTERLIFE: MUTE! (SHADOW CHILD + FRIEND WITHIN + KEIRAN SHARPLES)

COMMON, 21:00–02:00, FREE (£2 AFTER 10)

HIGHER GROUND

FUNKADEMIA (DAVE REDSOUL)

B

Official Parklife afterparty, with a selection of guests and resident DJs on the line-up.

DJ Da Funk taking over the decks for a night of hip-hop, funk and dubstep sounds.

Sat 21 Jun

E

UNDERDOG, 22:00–04:00, £8 EARLYBIRD (£10 THEREAFTER)

Monthly club night tribute to 90s indie – expect Pulp, Nirvana, Suede, Smashing Pumpkins, Pixies and more.

GROOVE IN THE DEEP

Beats, Bats & Beers Every Saturday — A musical outing soundtracked by House, Disco & Pop Obscurities

SHAKEDOWN

BLACK DOG BALLROOM NQ, 23:00–04:00, FREE

Wed 25 Jun

B

AFTERLIFE: BOOTLEG + GET DOWN (SECONDCITY + SIAN BENNETT + OR:LA & TOM DAVIES)

THE DEAF INSTITUTE, 22:00–04:00, £4.50 ADV (£5 DOOR)

The weekly student house and techno night returns to South, keeping you on the dancefloor till the early hours.

An eclectic mix of genres, with DJ Da Funk bringing a seamless blend of house, hip hop and dubstep sounds until the smaller hours.

E

Official Parklife afterparty, with a selection of guests and resident DJs on the line-up.

GOO

Student Thursday-nighter, with resident DJs Steve Davies, Bill Murray’s Rock n Soul club, and Nicola Bear serving up anything from retro classics to electro mash ups across three rooms.

B

ANTWERP MANSION, 22:00–04:00, £10 EARLYBIRD (£12 THEREAFTER)

&

FACTORY 251, 22:00–04:00, £8 EARLYBIRD (£10 THEREAFTER)

S

AFTERLIFE: DISTRIKT (KILLA KAM + ED HOLDEN + SKANKY)

S

Official Parklife afterparty, with a selection of guests and resident DJs on the line-up.

T

SOUND CONTROL, 22:00–04:00, £15 EARLYBIRD (£17.50 THEREAFTER)

S

AFTERLIFE: DROP THE MUSTARD (SCUBA + GEORGE FITZGERALD + LEWIS BOARDMAN)

Mancunian nightclub institution – delivering a chronological history of soul on a weekly basis, courtesy of their DJ collective.

TWENTY TWENTY TWO, 21:00–03:00, FREE

T

Official Parklife afterparty, with a selection of guests and resident DJs on the line-up.

BLOCK PARTY TROF NQ, 21:00–03:00, FREE

TROF NQ, 21:00–03:00, FREE (£1 AFTER 10PM)

A

THE RITZ, 22:00–04:00, £SOLD OUT

R

AFTERLIFE: THE WAREHOUSE PROJECT (SPECIAL UNANNOUNCED LINE-UP)

A

Official Parklife afterparty, with a selection of guests and resident DJs on the line-up.

STUDENT HOUSE SOUTH, 23:00–04:00, £2

WOO HAH

E

TROF NQ, 22:00–03:00, £3 EARLYBIRD (£5 THEREAFTER)

Free entry all night

E

AFTERLIFE: DRY HUMP (HENRY BIRD + DISCO STU B2B DISCO HUGH + ROSS DUPREE)

B

Official Parklife afterparty, with a selection of guests and resident DJs on the line-up.

E

GORILLA, 22:00–04:00, £10 EARLYBIRD (£12 THEREAFTER)

B

AFTERLIFE: NOW WAVE + FACT MAGAZINE (ONEMAN + RYAN HEMSWORTH + MADAM X)

AFTERLIFE: UNDER (HOT SINCE 82 + FRANZ FITZGERALD + MATT HENSHAW)

DJ DA FUNK BLACK DOG BALLROOM NWS, 22:00–04:00, FREE (BEFORE 11PM)

Common invite their buddies to take over the decks.

B

Official Parklife afterparty, with a selection of guests and resident DJs on the line-up.

Official Parklife afterparty, with a selection of guests and resident DJs on the line-up.

F//CK FACTORY 251, 23:00–03:30, £3

FRIENDS IN COMMON

THE RUBY LOUNGE, 22:00–04:00, £12 EARLYBIRD (£15 THEREAFTER)

THE DEAF INSTITUTE, 22:00–04:00, £12 EARLYBIRD (£15 THEREAFTER)

FUNKADEMIA (DAVID DUNNE) MINT LOUNGE, 22:30–03:30, £5 ADV (£6 DOOR)

DJ DA FUNK

BLACK DOG BALLROOM NQ, 22:00–04:00, FREE (BEFORE 11PM)

4pm — 3am

TOP OF THE POPS (PING PONG CLUB + GUS GORMAN) MINT LOUNGE, 22:30–03:30, £2

Get your weekend off to a great start with this healthy mix of dancefloor fillers and guilty pleasures served up by residents and guest DJs. STOP MAKING SENSE

HIGH JINX

UNDERDOG, 23:00–04:00, FREE (£4 AFTER MIDNIGHT)

Underdog resident Stuart Richard serves up a healthy mix of old skool hip-hop, house, bashment and bass. CLINT BOON

SOUTH, 23:00–04:00, £5

COMMON, 21:00–02:00, FREE

Common’s regular club-in-a-bar night of hipster bullshit, with Mr Seb Valentine, Benatronic & Luke Warm. WELL FUTURE

COMMON, 21:00–02:00, FREE (£2 AFTER 10)

Guest DJs on the decks, bringing you music from the past, present, and well, future.

Beats, Bats & Beers Every Saturday — A musical outing soundtracked by House, Disco & Pop Obscurities

An eclectic mix of genres, with DJ Da Funk bringing a seamless blend of house, hip hop and dubstep sounds until the smaller hours.

Mixed-bag night from local DJ ledge Clint Boon. JACOB COID

BLACK DOG BALLROOM NWS, 23:00–04:00, £TBC

Rebel Music’s Jacob Coid supplies an unpredictable mix of his left-ofcentre collection, featuring Dylan to Dre, the Strokes to Snoop Dogg, Bowie to the Beastie Boys and anything in between.

B E A T S B A T S & B E E R S THE SKINNY


Liverpool Clubs Tue 03 Jun DIRTY ANTICS

Thu 12 Jun JUICY

THE SHIPPING FORECAST, 23:00–03:00, £3

Messy Tuesday-nighter, bring your dirty shoes.

All party, no bullshit night of everything from classic hip-hop to disco and funk.

Wed 04 Jun

BUMPER, 20:00–05:00, £TBC

BUMPER, 22:30–04:00, FREE (£4 AFTER 11)

MEDICATION

NATION, 22:30–03:00, £5

Long-running student night serving up three rooms of house, electro, chart and r’n’b – complete with visuals and occasional fancy dress. KILL YOUR TV

BUMPER, 20:30–05:00, £2

An anything-goes affair – think indie, punk, ska, new wave, electro and more.

Thu 05 Jun JUICY

THE SHIPPING FORECAST, 23:00–03:00, £3

All party, no bullshit night of everything from classic hip-hop to disco and funk. SUPER RAD

BUMPER, 20:00–05:00, £TBC

A night of classic rad sounds spanning indie, rock, crunk and disco, with free gin and juice for the first 100 guests. TIME SQUARE

THE KRAZY HOUSE, 22:00–04:00, £2

Staple student night with a mix of music across the three floors (think: rock, indie, alternative, dance and a sprinkling of cheese). GOSSIP!

GARLANDS, 22:00–03:00, £4

Student night with 5 rooms of music spread over 2 floors and occasional theme nights.

Fri 06 Jun

THE CORRESPONDENTS

EAST VILLAGE ARTS CLUB, 19:00–22:00, £8

The genre-hopping London MC/ DJ duo continue with their quest to revamp vintage sounds for the modern ear.

Sat 07 Jun DROME REUNION

O2 ACADEMY, 21:00–03:00, £15

Drome returns to Liverpool for its second outing, with headline sets from Ulta-Sonic, DJ Trix and more. RAGE

THE KRAZY HOUSE, 22:00–05:00, £3

Mixed-bag night spread out over all three floors, serving up indie, rock, alternative and dance tunes. OUR OF THIS WORLD

CHAMELEON BAR, 20:00–02:00, FREE

Following their recent relaunch, Chameleon Bar presents an out of this world Saturday night, with guest and resident DJs taking care of the sounds. BEDLAM SATURDAY

GARLANDS, 22:00–04:00, £10 (£5)

Extravagant and flamboyant club night complete with resident entertainers, including Foxy Grunt and Barbie the hostess with the mostess. SWAG!

CAMEL CLUB, 22:30–04:00, FROM £2

Student night with drinks offers and resident DJs providing the urban soundtrack to your Thursday night.

Mon 09 Jun UNI BAR

CAMEL CLUB, 22:00–04:00, FROM £2

Long-standing student night, serving up a night of hip hop, r’n’b, funk and dancehall courtesy of residents, the RocRite DJs.

Tue 10 Jun

SUPER RAD

A night of classic rad sounds spanning indie, rock, crunk and disco, with free gin and juice for the first 100 guests. TIME SQUARE

THE KRAZY HOUSE, 22:00–04:00, £2

Staple student night with a mix of music across the three floors (think: rock, indie, alternative, dance and a sprinkling of cheese). GOSSIP!

GARLANDS, 22:00–03:00, £4

Student night with 5 rooms of music spread over 2 floors and occasional theme nights.

Fri 13 Jun

HUSTLE + NO FAKIN (DJ SPINNA)

THE SHIPPING FORECAST, 20:00–03:00, £10

The underground hip-hop, soul and house DJ/producer, aka Vincent Williams takes to The Hold with Hustle and No Fakin.

THE CRAIG CHARLES FUNK AND SOUL CLUB (JESS GASCOIGNE)

EAST VILLAGE ARTS CLUB, 23:00–04:00, £10

DJ and actor Craig Charles mans the decks until 3am, playing his picks of funk and soul.

Sat 14 Jun

POSITIVE VIBRATION VOL 2 (EXTRA LOVE + DUB SMUGGLERS + JERAMIAH FERRARI + BOLSHY + WE, THE UNDERSIGNED) THE KAZIMIER, 14:00–02:00, £6

A 12 hour celebration of Jamaican music, food, and culture, spilling out into The Kazimier Garden with headline sets from Extra Love and Dub Smugglers. RAGE

THE KRAZY HOUSE, 22:00–05:00, £3

Mixed-bag night spread out over all three floors, serving up indie, rock, alternative and dance tunes. OUR OF THIS WORLD

CHAMELEON BAR, 20:00–02:00, FREE

NATION, 22:30–03:00, £5

KILL YOUR TV

BUMPER, 20:30–05:00, £2

An anything-goes affair – think indie, punk, ska, new wave, electro and more.

June 2014

Student night with 5 rooms of music spread over 2 floors and occasional theme nights.

Sat 21 Jun

RUBIX (MARTIN BUTTRICH + MARK FANCIULLI)

NATION, 22:00–04:00, £16 EARLYBIRD (£18 THEREAFTER)

Rubix throw a proper summer party, with electronic artist Martin Buttrich showing off his technical prowess alongside forwardthinking Mark Fanciulli, still going strong since his 2011 debut. RAGE

THE KRAZY HOUSE, 22:00–05:00, £3

Mixed-bag night spread out over all three floors, serving up indie, rock, alternative and dance tunes. OUR OF THIS WORLD

CHAMELEON BAR, 20:00–02:00, FREE

Following their recent relaunch, Chameleon Bar presents an out of this world Saturday night, with guest and resident DJs taking care of the sounds. BEDLAM SATURDAY

GARLANDS, 22:00–04:00, £10 (£5)

Extravagant and flamboyant club night complete with resident entertainers, including Foxy Grunt and Barbie the hostess with the mostess. SWAG!

CAMEL CLUB, 22:30–04:00, FROM £2

Student night with drinks offers and resident DJs providing the urban soundtrack to your Thursday night.

Mon 23 Jun UNI BAR

Tue 24 Jun

BEDLAM SATURDAY

Extravagant and flamboyant club night complete with resident entertainers, including Foxy Grunt and Barbie the hostess with the mostess. SWAG!

CAMEL CLUB, 22:30–04:00, FROM £2

Student night with drinks offers and resident DJs providing the urban soundtrack to your Thursday night.

Mon 16 Jun UNI BAR

CAMEL CLUB, 22:00–04:00, FROM £2

CAMEL CLUB, 22:00–04:00, FROM £2

DIRTY ANTICS

BUMPER, 22:30–04:00, FREE (£4 AFTER 11)

Messy Tuesday-nighter, bring your dirty shoes.

Wed 25 Jun MEDICATION

NATION, 22:30–03:00, £5

Long-running student night serving up three rooms of house, electro, chart and r’n’b – complete with visuals and occasional fancy dress. KILL YOUR TV

BUMPER, 20:30–05:00, £2

Long-standing student night, serving up a night of hip hop, r’n’b, funk and dancehall courtesy of residents, the RocRite DJs.

An anything-goes affair – think indie, punk, ska, new wave, electro and more.

Tue 17 Jun

JUICY

DIRTY ANTICS

BUMPER, 22:30–04:00, FREE (£4 AFTER 11)

Messy Tuesday-nighter, bring your dirty shoes.

Wed 18 Jun MEDICATION

NATION, 22:30–03:00, £5

BUMPER, 20:30–05:00, £2

Long-running student night serving up three rooms of house, electro, chart and r’n’b – complete with visuals and occasional fancy dress.

GOSSIP!

GARLANDS, 22:00–03:00, £4

GARLANDS, 22:00–04:00, £10 (£5)

Wed 11 Jun MEDICATION

Staple student night with a mix of music across the three floors (think: rock, indie, alternative, dance and a sprinkling of cheese).

Long-standing student night, serving up a night of hip hop, r’n’b, funk and dancehall courtesy of residents, the RocRite DJs.

Messy Tuesday-nighter, bring your dirty shoes.

BUMPER, 22:30–04:00, FREE (£4 AFTER 11)

TIME SQUARE

THE KRAZY HOUSE, 22:00–04:00, £2

Following their recent relaunch, Chameleon Bar presents an out of this world Saturday night, with guest and resident DJs taking care of the sounds.

Long-running student night serving up three rooms of house, electro, chart and r’n’b – complete with visuals and occasional fancy dress.

DIRTY ANTICS

SUPER RAD BUMPER, 20:00–05:00, £TBC

A night of classic rad sounds spanning indie, rock, crunk and disco, with free gin and juice for the first 100 guests.

KILL YOUR TV

An anything-goes affair – think indie, punk, ska, new wave, electro and more.

Thu 19 Jun JUICY

THE SHIPPING FORECAST, 23:00–03:00, £3

All party, no bullshit night of everything from classic hip-hop to disco and funk.

Thu 26 Jun THE SHIPPING FORECAST, 23:00–03:00, £3

All party, no bullshit night of everything from classic hip-hop to disco and funk. SUPER RAD

BUMPER, 20:00–05:00, £TBC

A night of classic rad sounds spanning indie, rock, crunk and disco, with free gin and juice for the first 100 guests. TIME SQUARE

THE KRAZY HOUSE, 22:00–04:00, £2

Staple student night with a mix of music across the three floors (think: rock, indie, alternative, dance and a sprinkling of cheese). GOSSIP!

GARLANDS, 22:00–03:00, £4

Student night with 5 rooms of music spread over 2 floors and occasional theme nights.

Sat 28 Jun RAGE

OUR OF THIS WORLD CHAMELEON BAR, 20:00–02:00, FREE

Following their recent relaunch, Chameleon Bar presents an out of this world Saturday night, with guest and resident DJs taking care of the sounds. BEDLAM SATURDAY

GARLANDS, 22:00–04:00, £10 (£5)

Extravagant and flamboyant club night complete with resident entertainers, including Foxy Grunt and Barbie the hostess with the mostess. SWAG!

CAMEL CLUB, 22:30–04:00, FROM £2

Student night with drinks offers and resident DJs providing the urban soundtrack to your Thursday night.

Mon 30 Jun UNI BAR

CAMEL CLUB, 22:00–04:00, FROM £2

Long-standing student night, serving up a night of hip hop, r’n’b, funk and dancehall courtesy of residents, the RocRite DJs.

Theatre Manchester

Royal Exchange Theatre BILLY LIAR

VARIOUS DATES BETWEEN 13 JUN AND 12 JUL, TIMES VARY, FROM £14.50

Billy Fisher, a creative and compulsive liar, is a young clerk in a gloomy undertaker’s office who invents the alternative fantasy world of Ambrosia to break up the monotony of his humdrum existence, thus alienating family and friends. MOTHER’S RUIN

8–9 JUN, 9:00PM – 10:30PM, £20 (£12) DOUBLE BILL W/ PUFFBALL

Follow up the performance of Puffball with a raucous cabaret style performance from the Mother’s Ruin bunch.

STUART MACONIE: THE PEOPLE’S SONGS

Manchester Theatre

24 JUN, 8:00PM – 9:15PM, £12 (£10)

Contact

28 MAY – 7 JUN, NOT 1 JUN, 2 JUN, TIMES VARY, FROM £14.50

The BBC Radio 2 presenter takes audiences on a journey through the 50 songs he feels tell the story of Britain. THE LAST DAYS OF TROY

CYAC: I’D LIKE TO SAY SOMETHING

19–21 JUN, 7:30PM – 10:00PM, £9 £5)

Devised in response to the ideas exchanged during Contacting the World Festival 2014 in Tehran, CYAC explore what it means to be marginalised. RE:CON: FLUXUS

28 JUN, 6:00PM – 9:00PM, FREE

Mixed bag night of performance spanning music, film, dance, installation, and performance, blurring the lines between the distinct aspects of each practice.

Hallé St Peter’s ANGEL MEADOW

10–21 JUN, NOT 16, TIMES VARY, PRICES VARY

A site-specific performance from ANU Productions and HOME, taking audience members into the grisly world of a Victorian slum at the heart of industrial Britain.

Opera House

THE TWO WORLDS OF CHARLIE F

9–14 JUN, TIMES VARY, FROM £14

Darkly comic tale exploring the impact of injury during combat on those effected and the people around them, performed by serving and veteran soldiers.

Simon Armitage’s visceral retelling of Homer’s The Illiad makes its way to the stage for a world premiere, bringing the war between The Greeks and Troy to a brutal conclusion. BRITANNIA WAVES THE RULES

27 MAY, 28 MAY, 2 JUN, 4 JUN, 7 JUN, TIMES VARY, £12

The world première of Gareth Farr’s Bruntwood Prize-winning play, exploring contemporary conflict from the perspective of a young misfit returning from war a changed man. PUFFBALL

8–9 JUN, 7:30PM – 9:00PM, £15 (£10)

A cast of LGBTQ dancers present a stunning circus performance, drawing inspiration from the dancers own lives and their experiences over the past year.

Royal Northern College of Music COMPANY

25 JUN – 4 JUL, NOT 27 JUN, 30 JUN, 2 JUL, TIMES VARY, £15

ALL THE FUN OF THE FAIRBURN 11 JUN, 19 JUN, 7:30PM – 10:00PM, £3

Dark comedy from Rachel Fairburn, who observes that life would be more fun if it wasn’t for people, places and things – join her as she explores what life would be like on her terms. STAN

3–5 JUN, 7:30PM – 10:00PM, £5

Loose Lips Theatre present their latest theatrical piece, telling the multi-faceted story of all-round not great guy, Stan, examining the consequences of our decisions in a cyber age. BOUNCERS

7–8 JUN, 8:00PM – 10:00PM, £12

Comic parody of the disco scene, with four bouncers playing 20 roles throughout the production, from giggly girls to lairy lads. ORDINARY DAYS

16–21 JUN, 8:00PM – 10:00PM, £12

Top Note Arts present Adam’s Gwon’s tale of four ordinary New Yorkers and the serendipitous moments that link them together. DEAR DAUGHTER

29 JUN, 7:30PM – 10:00PM, £7 (£5)

Based on the memoirs of Flora Jewsbury, this true story set in North Manchester delves into a bittersweet tale of growing up in the North in the 20th century.

The Lowry Studio KILLING ROGER

13 JUN, 8:00PM – 10:30PM, £12

Edinburgh Fringe Festival favourite comes to The Lowry as part of a national tour – telling the story of Roger’s life through life-size puppetry and original music. THE BREAD AND THE BEER

21 JUN, 8:00PM – 10:00PM, £12

A one-man epic in which myths collide with the modern world, as an ancient god awakes after thousands of years to find a grey and lifeless world. HE HAD HAIRY HANDS

5–6 JUN, 8:00PM – 10:30PM, £12

Grotesque comedy from Kill the Beast Theatre Company and the Lowry Associate Artists, set in the sleepy town of Hemlock-UnderLye where a supernatural killer is on the loose. A MIDSUMMER NIGHTS DREAM

Stephen Sondheim’s musical comedy set in 70s New York, following bachelor Bobby on his 35th birthday as he looks at the five couples around him and finds the source of his inability to commit.

8–9 JUN, TIMES VARY, FROM £5.50

Errr... the UK’s top male glamour show. As in, there’s more than one, and they are the best.

Secret Location

THE WATERY JOURNEY OF NEREUS PIKE

24 JUN, 2:30PM – 4:30PM, FROM £10

The first of four performances from Quarantine theatre company, set to take place over the next three years and taking us through the seasons as they go.

THE DREAMBOYS

26 JUN, 7:30PM – 10:00PM, FROM £21

THERE’LL ALWAYS BE AN ENGLAND

A celebration of all things Blighty, with patriotic tunes at the forefront.

Phones 4u Arena CIRQUE DU SOLEIL: DRALION

11–15 JUN, TIMES VARY, £50

The ever-impressive Cirque du Soleil take their signature production of Dralion on the road for its 15th anniversary, blending acrobatics, choreography, live music and clowns to suitably dazzling effect.

Royal Exchange Studio HOAX: MY LONELY HEART

4–7 JUN, TIMES VARY, £12 (£10)

Exploring the individual’s capacity for self sabotage when faced with love, Hoax is a heartbreaking dark musical written by Ravi Thornton and directed by Benji Reid. THE PARDONER’S TALE

18–28 JUN, NOT 22, 23, TIMES VARY, £12 (£10)

Lewis Gibson’s adaptation of The Pardoner’s tale, telling the tale of three men who tried to kill Death and get rich quick, a plan which inevitably goes south.

QUARANTINE: SUMMER

5–14 JUN, NOT 8, 9, 10, 8:00PM – 10:00PM, £9 (£6)

The Dancehouse CABARET REGALE

21 JUN, 7:45PM – 11:00PM, £5

A variety performance spanning poetry, music, comedy, dance and more. MOVE IT!

7 JUN, 7:30PM – 10:00PM, £5

An evening of dance presented by evening class participants, taking in flamenco, ballet, jazz and more.

The King’s Arms LET’S SEE WHAT HAPPENS

7 JUN, 7:30PM – 10:00PM, £3

Improv from the members of CszUK – using audience suggestions a comedian will tell a story based on this, followed by imrpovised sketches from a troupe of actors. HIDDEN

10 JUN, 7:30PM – 10:00PM, £10 (£8)

Exploring the notion that we all have something to hide, Hidden follows six individuals with seemingly ordinary lives as they head on a collision course with hilarious and dark consequences.

Kid-friendly adaptation of Shakespeare’s best-loved comedy, utilising music, puppets, special lighting, circus tricks and more to tell the tale. 14 JUN, 8:00PM – 11:00PM, £12

Fringe First Award-winning comic Laura Mugridge returns to the Northwest with her new show, presented in collaboration with Katy Schutte and Tom Adams, telling the tale of Nereus Pike’s journey to the bottom of the sea. TONY AND MIKE

15 JUN, TIMES VARY, FROM £6.50

Children’s theatre show telling the tale of Tony the owl and Mike the squirrel. BLACKBIRD.

19 JUN, 8:00PM – 10:30PM, £12

David Harrower’s unnerving tale of revenge makes it to The Lowry stage, set fifteen years after a forbidden love affair when the two parties are forced to reuinte. I WISH I WAS LONELY

20 JUN, TIMES VARY, £12

The Lowry: Lyric Theatre HAPPY DAYS

24–28 JUN, TIMES VARY, FROM £30

The creator of the legendary television series, Garry Marshall, takes the much-loved show to the stage – centred around Fonz’s attempt to save the beloved Arnold’s Diner from demolition. THINGS WE DO FOR LOVE

2–7 JUN, 7:30PM – 10:00PM, FROM £19.50

Natalie Imbruglia makes her stage debut in Alan Aychbourn’s imaginatively staged comic drama exploring the complexities of love. FLASH MOB.

11–12 JUN, 7:30PM – 10:00PM, £28

The stars of various TV dance shows, including Strictly Come Dancing and Britain’s Got Talent, unite on the stage for an energetic and explosive performance. DERREN BROWN

13–21 JUN, NOT 16, 7:30PM – 11:00PM, FROM £34

The infamous trickster brings his latest psychological mind trip to the Lowry for a one man show.

The Lowry: Quays Theatre A TASTE OF HONEY

VARIOUS DATES BETWEEN 18 JAN AND 14 JUN, TIMES VARY, FROM £18

Written when she was just 18, Shelagh Delaney’s bitter-sweet tale of love and betrayal – set amidst tenements, housing estates and bingo halls – gets a welcome revisit for 2014. MORECAMBE

19–21 JUN, TIMES VARY, FROM £18

Heart-warming production of Tim Whitnall’s Olivier Award-winning play, telling the story of one of Britain’s best-loved entertainers. LOST BOY RACER

28–29 JUN, TIMES VARY, £16

On yer bike drama marking the Tour de France Grand Depart, in which and overweight tax inspector puts his life back on track with the help of a ex-pro cycle mechanic.

The Plaza Stockport

THE COMPLETE WORKS OF WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE (ABRIDGED)

23 JUN, 7:30PM – 9:30PM, FROM £16.50

Liverpool Theatre Epstein Theatre MARTINI LOUNGE

21 JUN, 8:30PM – 11:00PM, £20

A tantalising night of burlesque performances, carefully pieced together by Liverpool’s own Millie Dollar.

Everyman Theatre

DEAD DOG IN A SUITCASE (AND OTHER LOVE SONGS)

VARIOUS DATES BETWEEN 21 JUN AND 12 JUL, TIMES VARY, FROM £11

Everyman and Kneehigh present a radical re-working of John Gay’s The Beggar’s Opera, written by Carl Grose with music by Charles Hazlewood, and directed by Mike Shepherd – follow the twisted musical tale exploring moral issues of our time.

Liverpool Empire THE LION KING

VARIOUS DATES BETWEEN 27 MAY AND 5 JUL, TIMES VARY, PRICES VARY

Stage adaptation of the favourited Disney film, bolstered by suitably dazzling staging and elaborate costumes, masks and puppets.

Liverpool Playhouse SIZWE BANZI IS DEAD

10–14 JUN, TIMES VARY, FROM £10

Eclipse Theatre Company present a gripping tale set in 1972 apartheid South Africa, where Sizwe Banzi must choose between deportation or abandoning his identity.

Royal Court Theatre LENNON

VARIOUS DATES BETWEEN 13 JUN AND 19 JUL, TIMES VARY, £13

John Power makes his theatrical début as Lennon in this musicpacked show by writer/director Bob Eaton, returning to Liverpool following successful runs in 2010 and 1982.

Holding the title of London’s longest-running comedy after nine years on the West End, the hypercondensed The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged) comes to the Northwest, cramming in all 37 plays in under 100 minutes.

The Capstone

Three Minute Theatre

The Lantern Theatre

BOLLYWOOD GIRLS OF BLACKBURN

9–11 JUN, 7:30PM – 10:00PM, £9 (£8)

Comic musical following a lonely 30-something dreaming of the colourful world of Bollywood from her home in Blackburn, with the arrival of a new neighbour causing events to unravel. LIVING WITH MR HAPPY

16–18 JUN, 7:30PM – 10:00PM, £9 (£8)

Geoffrey Hannam presents a new comedy about life, love, and trainspotting, delving into the lives of several characters struggling with everyday problems and the troubles of sharing their lives with others.

Waterside Arts Centre NEW PLAYS

14 JUN, 7:30PM – 10:00PM, £6

THE MORGUE TABLE

13–14 JUN, 7:40PM – 9:00PM, £11.50

A musical comedy ghost story set in a prison haunted by past residents of the morgue that once stood on the same spot, and all of this on Friday 13th, no less.

JEFFERSON’S TALE

5–7 JUN, 7:30PM – 10:00PM, £7.50 (£5.50)

An at times philosophical science fiction offering from Liverpool Network Theatre Group, following Jay on a journey through time and the fabric of reality, battling the universal forcesof chaos along the way. BUTTERFLY IN SHADES OF BLUE

20–21 JUN, 7:30PM – 10:00PM, £10.50 (£7.50)

Stage rom-com spanning 17 years, following Stephen and Vicky as they fall in and out of love. FRAMING LIVERPOOL THROUGH MICHIGAN EYES

26–28 JUN, 7:30PM – 9:00PM, £3.50

Students from the University of Michigan present new works based on their perceptions of Liverpool’s sites, sounds and people.

A participatory show exploring communication and contact, during which you’ll have to commit to leaving your phone switched off.

Playwright and chair of the Cheshire Theatre Guild, Gordon Hamlin presents an evening of new drama, touching upon controversial themes and keeping it light with comic undertones.

23–24 JUN, 7:00PM – 10:30PM, £8

Z Arts

Local and national companies present new works in progress, followed by an informal Q&A and networking opportunities.

13–14 JUN, TIMES VARY, PRICES VARY

4–7 JUN, 7:30PM – 9:00PM, FROM £10 (£8)

A MIDSUMMER NIGHTS DREAM + NIGHTLIGHT

Double bill performance presented by the Lowry Young Actors Company.

THE FLARE WEEKENDER

Presented in conjunction with Word of Warning, the Flare Weekender brings together some of the most daring and original artists from around Europe for two days of boundary-pushing theatre.

Unity Theatre SCRATCH NIGHT

17 JUN, 8:00PM – 10:00PM, £5.00

CAROUSEL

What We Did Next present Rodgers and Hammerstein’s darkest musical, touching on issues at the time unheard of in musical theatre.

THE KRAZY HOUSE, 22:00–05:00, £3

Mixed-bag night spread out over all three floors, serving up indie, rock, alternative and dance tunes.

Listings

53


Liverpool Theatre WAITING FOR SUMMER 11–12 JUN, 8:00PM – 10:00PM, £10 (£8)

A four-part theatrical endeavour presented by an all-female cast, exploring everything from cooking in Palestine and getting hitched in the midst of the Syrian uprising, to the realities facing Iraqi women and promiscuity in Vienna. WAR CORRESPONDENTS

13–14 JUN, 8:00PM – 10:00PM, £12 (£10)

Delving into the daring world of war correspondents, Steven Hoggett and Helen Chadwick present a daring new production fusing authentic interviews from those on the front line with music and physical theatre. SIR HENRY AT RAWLINSON END

18 JUN, 8:00PM – 10:00PM, £14 (£12)

A new stage adaptation of Vivian Stanshall’s spoken word solo comedy will see the world of comic characters brought to life. THE CURIOUS DISAPPEARANCE OF MR FOO

21 JUN, 8:00PM – 10:00PM, £10 (£8)

A touching production from The Sound Agents, following an Irish Catholic as she reflects on her lost love, her Chinese fiance repatriated by force. WOLF RED

24–25 JUN, 8:00PM – 10:00PM, £12 (£10)

Tmesis Theatre present an energetic show on the border between fairy tale and reality, following a woman held captive in the woods. GAFFER

26 JUN – 5 JUL, NOT SUNDAYS, TIMES VARY, PRICES VARY

Chris Chibnall’s acclaimed play about a struggling football manager and his star striker comes to the Unity Theatre stage, exploring homophobia within the beautiful game.

Manchester Comedy Tue 03 Jun

XS MALARKEY (CAIMH MCDONNELL + GEIN’S FAMILY GIFTSHOP + JOSH DEEGAN + MC TOBY HADOKE) PUB/ZOO, 19:00–23:00, £5 (£3)

The rather ace comedy night continues with the usual Tuesday night shenanigans.

Wed 04 Jun SOS TV LIVE

THREE MINUTE THEATRE, 19:00–22:00, £5 (£4)

The Superstars on Saturday bunch present an evening of silly character sketches. KNIGHTMARE LIVE

THE LOWRY: QUAYS THEATRE, 20:00–22:30, £18

Following a sell-out run at the Brighton Comedy Festival, the immortal words of Treguard the Dungeon Master come to the Lowry, bringing home the magic of the late 80s kids TV show.

Thu 05 Jun

Comedy Manchester

BRIGHT CLUB

Fri 06 Jun

BARREL OF LAUGHS (NATHAN CATON + BRENNAN REECE + WAYNE DEAKIN + MC PETE OTWAY )

THE FROG AND BUCKET COMEDY CLUB, 19:00–02:00, £16 (£8)

Three top-notch comics, a sprinkling of Frog compere funnies and a late night disco courtesy of the resident DJ. THE BEST IN STAND UP (PAUL TONKINSON + ANDREW RYAN + JO CAULFIELD + NATHAN CATON + MC BEN NORRIS)

THE COMEDY STORE, 20:00–22:00, £18 (£12)

Regular night of stand up with five world-class comedians. FRANK SKINNER: MAN IN A SUIT (GARETH RICHARDS) O2 APOLLO, 19:30–22:00, £27.50

That funny man offa the telly takes his reel of quips out on the road, suitably suited and booted as he goes. FUNNY WOMEN SEMI-FINALS

THE KING’S ARMS, 19:30–23:00, £5

The funny women awards is back for its 12th year, shining a light on the ever-talented female voices of comedy.

Sat 07 Jun

THE BEST IN STAND UP (PAUL TONKINSON + ANDREW RYAN + JO CAULFIELD + NATHAN CATON + MC BEN NORRIS)

THE COMEDY STORE, 19:00–21:00, £20 (£14)

Regular night of stand up with five world-class comedians. THE BEST IN STAND UP (PAUL TONKINSON + ANDREW RYAN + JO CAULFIELD + NATHAN CATON + MC BEN NORRIS)

THE COMEDY STORE, 21:30–23:30, £20 (£14)

Regular night of stand up with five world-class comedians. SAM BRADY: KINDNESS

THREE MINUTE THEATRE, 20:00–22:00, £8

Comedian and failed Buddhist Monk, Sam Brady takes his comic show inspired by a random act of kindness on the road. BEST OF BUZZ COMEDY (GARY DELANEY)

WATERSIDE ARTS CENTRE, 20:00–23:00, £12 (£10)

Gearing up for Edinburgh Fringe season, Gary Delaney presents his joke-dense stand up routine.

Sun 08 Jun

NEW STUFF (MC TOBY HADOKE)

THE COMEDY STORE, 19:30–21:30, £6 (£4)

A night of stand-up from some fresh-faced comics trying to break on to the circuit – be nice.

Mon 09 Jun

BEAT THE FROG (MC JONATHAN MAYOR)

THE FROG AND BUCKET COMEDY CLUB, 19:00–22:30, £3 (FREE WITH STUDENT ID)

A ten-act long heckle-fest inviting a handful of amateurs to take to the stage and try to Beat the Frog, and the audience decides who stays – brutal!

BIG VALUE THURSDAYS (NATHAN CATON + DEREK RYAN + CHRIS PURCHASE + WAYNE DEAKIN + LOU CONRAN)

Tue 10 Jun

THE FROG AND BUCKET COMEDY CLUB, 19:00–22:30, £9 (£6)

PUB/ZOO, 19:00–23:00, £5 (£3)

A Frog flagship event offering up four great acts for stonkingly great value.

STAND UP THURSDAY (PAUL TONKINSON + ANDREW RYAN + MC BEN NORRIS)

THE COMEDY STORE, 20:00–22:00, £12 (£8)

Cheat life and get that Friday feeling one day early with a night of comedic delight from some circuit funny folk.

FRANK SKINNER: MAN IN A SUIT (GARETH RICHARDS) O2 APOLLO, 19:30–22:00, £27.50

That funny man offa the telly takes his reel of quips out on the road, suitably suited and booted as he goes.

XS MALARKEY (FIN TALYOR + LOU CONRAN + TOY KINSELLA + MC TOBY HADOKE)

The rather ace comedy night continues with the usual Tuesday night shenanigans. THE WORST COMEDY NIGHT IN SALFORD

THE KING’S ARMS, 19:30–23:00, FREE

Listings

THE DEAF INSTITUTE, 19:30–22:30, £6

A selection of comedic academics do a stint of stand-up for your entertainment and enlightenment. Laughs and learning in one neat package: tick. BIG VALUE THURSDAYS (MICHEAL LEGGE + DARREN HARRIOTT + PETE ANTONIOU + SMUG ROBERTS + MC DANNY MCLOUGHLIN)

THE FROG AND BUCKET COMEDY CLUB, 19:00–22:30, £9 (£6)

A Frog flagship event offering up four great acts for stonkingly great value.

STAND UP THURSDAY (PAUL SINHA + MC MANDY KNIGHT)

THE COMEDY STORE, 20:00–22:00, £12 (£8)

Cheat life and get that Friday feeling one day early with a night of comedic delight from some circuit funny folk. SHAM BODIE 7 (BAD GRAMMAR + CHEEKYKITA + BEN KEWIN + JAYNE EDWARDS + WAYNE AND GAIN + BEN TONGE)

THE CASTLE HOTEL, 20:00–23:00, £5

Monthly comedy/gig night returning for its seventh outing, headlined by noise-making duo Bad Grammar, the ever-bizarre Cheekykita and a new show from Ben Kewin.

Fri 13 Jun

BARREL OF LAUGHS (MICHEAL LEGGE + TOM TOAL + SMUG ROBERTS + MC DANNY MCLOUGHLIN) THE FROG AND BUCKET COMEDY CLUB, 19:00–02:00, £16 (£8)

Three top-notch comics, a sprinkling of Frog compere funnies and a late night disco courtesy of the resident DJ. THE BEST IN STAND UP (OLA + MARKUS BIRDMAN + PAUL SINHA + MC MANDY KNIGHT)

THE COMEDY STORE, 20:00–22:00, £18 (£12)

Regular night of stand up with five world-class comedians. PENN AND TELLER

PALACE THEATRE, 20:00–23:00, FROM £30.50

The American comic illusionist duo take their show on the road for their first ever UK tour. PENN AND TELLER

PALACE THEATRE, 20:00–23:00, FROM £30.50

The American comic illusionist duo take their show on the road for their first ever UK tour.

Sat 14 Jun

BARREL OF LAUGHS (MICHEAL LEGGE + TOM TOAL + SMUG ROBERTS + MC DANNY MCLOUGHLIN) THE FROG AND BUCKET COMEDY CLUB, 19:00–02:00, £17 (£10)

Three top-notch comics, a sprinkling of Frog compere funnies and a late night disco courtesy of the resident DJ. THE BEST IN STAND UP (OLA + MARKUS BIRDMAN + PAUL SINHA + MC MANDY KNIGHT)

THE COMEDY STORE, 19:00–21:00, £20 (£14)

Regular night of stand up with five world-class comedians. THE BEST IN STAND UP (OLA + MARKUS BIRDMAN + PAUL SINHA + MC MANDY KNIGHT)

THE COMEDY STORE, 21:30–23:30, £20 (£14)

Regular night of stand up with five world-class comedians.

Sun 15 Jun

NEW COMEDIANS (MC ALEX BOARDMAN)

THE COMEDY STORE, 19:30–21:30, £3

Keeping expectations low with this night of open mic stand up, opening up the stage to anyone willing to give it go.

Regular night of stand up with five world-class comedians.

Wed 11 Jun

Comic Robert Broderick and multiinstrumentalist James Hancox get their hip-hop on as Abandoman – their cheeky music act, which sees ‘em creating musical sketches at speed in front of a live audience.

THE RUSTY SHERIFF’S SKETCH LIMOUSINE

THE KING’S ARMS, 19:30–23:00, £3

An evening of sketch comedy at the hands of The Rusty Sherrif. ALL THE FUN OF THE FAIRBURN

THE KING’S ARMS, 19:30–22:00, £3

Dark comedy from Rachel Fairburn, who observes that life would be more fun if it wasn’t for people, places and things – join her as she explores what life would be like on her terms.

54

Thu 12 Jun

ABANDOMAN

THE LOWRY: QUAYS THEATRE, 20:00–23:00, £17

Mon 16 Jun

Sun 22 Jun

Mon 30 Jun

THE FROG AND BUCKET COMEDY CLUB, 19:00–22:30, £3 (FREE WITH STUDENT ID)

THE COMEDY STORE, 19:30–22:00, £3

THE FROG AND BUCKET COMEDY CLUB, 19:00–22:30, £3 (FREE WITH STUDENT ID)

BEAT THE FROG (MC PETE OTWAY)

A ten-act long heckle-fest inviting a handful of amateurs to take to the stage and try to Beat the Frog, and the audience decides who stays – brutal! BLACK COMEDY NIGHT

THE COMEDY STORE, 20:00–22:00, £10

Trevor Lynch presents the first in a series of comedy nights, aptly titled Laff ‘til Ya Fart.

Tue 17 Jun

XS MALARKEY (JOE LYCETT + PHIL JERROD + CHE BURLEY + MC TOBY HADOKE)

PUB/ZOO, 19:00–23:00, £5 (£3)

The rather ace comedy night continues with the usual Tuesday night shenanigans.

Wed 18 Jun

SO YOU THINK YOU’RE FUNNY

THE FROG AND BUCKET COMEDY CLUB, 19:00–22:30, £5 (£3)

NEW COMEDIANS (MC ALEX BOARDMAN)

Regular night of stand up with five world-class comedians. QUIPPOPOTAMUS

FUEL, 20:00–23:00, FREE

Fuel’s free stand up night returns for another night of – let’s face it – slightly bizarre comedy.

Mon 23 Jun

BEAT THE FROG (MC DAVID LONGLEY)

THE FROG AND BUCKET COMEDY CLUB, 19:00–22:30, £3 (FREE WITH STUDENT ID)

A ten-act long heckle-fest inviting a handful of amateurs to take to the stage and try to Beat the Frog, and the audience decides who stays – brutal!

Tue 24 Jun

XS MALARKEY (SUZI RUFFELL + BRENNAN REECE + JOHN TAYLOR + MC TOBY HADOKE)

The rather ace comedy night continues with the usual Tuesday night shenanigans.

THE LOWRY STUDIO, 20:00–23:00, £10

Keeping expectations low with this night of open mic stand up, opening up the stage to anyone willing to give it go.

Fresh Meat Star Tiernan Douieb presents his blend of friendly and political comedy, tackling everything from elitism to spiders.

Thu 19 Jun

ALL THE FUN OF THE FAIRBURN

THE KING’S ARMS, 19:30–22:00, £3

Dark comedy from Rachel Fairburn, who observes that life would be more fun if it wasn’t for people, places and things – join her as she explores what life would be like on her terms.

THE WORST COMEDY NIGHT IN SALFORD

THE KING’S ARMS, 19:30–23:00, FREE

Thu 26 Jun

BIG VALUE THURSDAYS (TONY BURGESS + WILL MARS + PETER MCCOLE + MARK NELSON + PHIL ELLIS)

THE FROG AND BUCKET COMEDY CLUB, 19:00–22:30, £9 (£6)

A Frog flagship event offering up four great acts for stonkingly great value.

Fri 20 Jun

STAND UP THURSDAY (ALEX BOARDMAN + PETE JOHANSSON + MC JASON COOK)

THE FROG AND BUCKET COMEDY CLUB, 19:00–02:00, £16 (£8)

Cheat life and get that Friday feeling one day early with a night of comedic delight from some circuit funny folk.

BARREL OF LAUGHS (GARY DELANEY + KATIE MULGREW + JOHN LYNN + MC DAVE WILLIAMS)

Three top-notch comics, a sprinkling of Frog compere funnies and a late night disco courtesy of the resident DJ.

THE BEST IN STAND UP (JARRED CHRISTMAS + GORDON SOUTHERN + JIMMY MCGHIE + MC MICKEY HUTTON)

THE COMEDY STORE, 20:00–22:00, £12 (£8)

COMEDY AT THE KINGS

THE KING’S ARMS, 19:30–23:00, £3

An evening of live stand up comedy and a cake raffle, what’s not to love?

Fri 27 Jun

THE COMEDY STORE, 20:00–22:00, £18 (£12)

THE BEST IN STAND UP (ALEX BOARDMAN + PETE JOHANSSON + ADDY CAN DER BORGH + CHRIS MCCAUSLAND + MC JASON COOK)

ANU MRU-MRU

THE COMEDY STORE, 20:00–22:00, £18 (£12)

Regular night of stand up with five world-class comedians. THE DANCEHOUSE, 18:30–21:00, £19

Popular Polish comedy sketch trio. GAG REFLEX (PATRICK MONOHAN + HARRIET DYER)

THE LOWRY STUDIO, 20:00–22:30, £12

Edinburgh preview show from the livewire comic, Patrick Monohan and sangry comic, Harriet Dyer.

Sat 21 Jun

BARREL OF LAUGHS (GARY DELANEY + KATIE MULGREW + JOHN LYNN + MC DAVE WILLIAMS) THE FROG AND BUCKET COMEDY CLUB, 19:00–02:00, £17 (£10)

Three top-notch comics, a sprinkling of Frog compere funnies and a late night disco courtesy of the resident DJ.

THE BEST IN STAND UP (JARRED CHRISTMAS + GORDON SOUTHERN + JIMMY MCGHIE + MC MICKEY HUTTON) THE COMEDY STORE, 19:00–21:00, £20 (£14)

Regular night of stand up with five world-class comedians.

THE BEST IN STAND UP (JARRED CHRISTMAS + GORDON SOUTHERN + JIMMY MCGHIE + MC MICKEY HUTTON) THE COMEDY STORE, 21:30–23:30, £20 (£14)

Regular night of stand up with five world-class comedians. COMEDYSPORTZ

WATERSIDE ARTS CENTRE, 18:30–22:00, £7 (£5)

Comedy improv show with two teams battling it out for the biggest laughs, serving up sketches, songs and scenes with audience participation playing a key role in the development. SKETCH APPEAL

THE KING’S ARMS, 19:30–23:00, £2.50

Thespionage Productions bring their latest sketch show to Manchester in advance of their Edinburgh Fringe Festival run.

A ten-act long heckle-fest inviting a handful of amateurs to take to the stage and try to Beat the Frog, and the audience decides who stays – brutal! SIDEKICK COMEDY (KATE MCCABE + STAPLEFACE + GEIN’S FAMILY GIFT SHOP + THE TOURISTS)

VIA, 19:30–23:00, £2

A monthly comedy gig offering an alternative to the usual comedy nights, offering a new take on the template with a nerdy-cool vibe.

Liverpool Comedy

PUB/ZOO, 19:00–23:00, £5 (£3)

The Manchester heat of the long-running comedy night that launched the careers of Dylan Moran, Lee Mack and Graham Norton, to name a few. TIERNAN DOUIEB + KETIH FARNAN

BEAT THE FROG (MC DAN NIGHTINGALE)

Regular night of stand up with five world-class comedians.

Sat 28 Jun

BARREL OF LAUGHS (TONY BURGESS + CHRIS TURNER + MARK NELSON + MC PHIL ELLIS) THE FROG AND BUCKET COMEDY CLUB, 19:00–02:00, £17 (£10)

Three top-notch comics, a sprinkling of Frog compere funnies and a late night disco courtesy of the resident DJ.

THE BEST IN STAND UP (ALEX BOARDMAN + PETE JOHANSSON + ADDY CAN DER BORGH + CHRIS MCCAUSLAND + MC JASON COOK) THE COMEDY STORE, 19:00–21:00, £20 (£14)

Regular night of stand up with five world-class comedians.

THE BEST IN STAND UP (ALEX BOARDMAN + PETE JOHANSSON + ADDY CAN DER BORGH + CHRIS MCCAUSLAND + MC JASON COOK) THE COMEDY STORE, 21:30–23:30, £20 (£14)

Regular night of stand up with five world-class comedians.

Sun 29 Jun

NEW STUFF (MC TOBY HADOKE)

THE COMEDY STORE, 21:30–23:30, £3

A night of stand-up from some fresh-faced comics trying to break on to the circuit – be nice.

COMEDY AT ANTWERP MANSION (ROB ROUSE + ROLAND GENT) ANTWERP MANSION, 19:30–22:30, £5

Edinburgh preview shows from crude comic par excellence, Rob Rouse and the XS Malarkey main man Roland Gent. MR B THE GENTLEMAN RHYMER

THE LOWRY STUDIO, 20:00–22:30, £12

Bringing his unique brand of chap hop (hip hop meets the Queen’s English) to the Northwest as part of his Mad Dogs and Englishmen in the Midsummer tour.

Wed 04 Jun THE LAUGHTER FACTOR

THE SLAUGHTERHOUSE, 20:00–23:00, £5 (£3)

A monthly event giving comics the chance to try out new material before the weekend shows – it helps if you think of yourself as a comedic guinea pig.

Thu 05 Jun

PHILBERTO (TOM TOAL + BEN LAWES + MC DAVE TWENTYMAN)

COMEDY CENTRAL, 18:00–22:00, £15

Milo McCabe presents the lovely Portuguese reality TV star, Philberto, the star of Live On The Floor For A Month.

Fri 06 Jun

PHILBERTO (TOM TOAL + DALISO CHAPONDA + MC DAVE TWENTYMAN)

COMEDY CENTRAL, 18:00–22:00, £15

Milo McCabe presents the lovely Portuguese reality TV star, Philberto, the star of Live On The Floor For A Month.

GARY DELANEY (STE PORTER + PAUL TONKINSON + MC NEIL FITZMAURICE)

THE SLAUGHTERHOUSE, 20:00–23:00, £15

Writer and stand-up comic Gary Delaney continues with his quest to tell as many jokes as possible, because apparently most shows simply don’t contain enough for his liking. BOILING POINT (MC PAUL SMITH)

HOLIDAY INN, 19:00–22:30, £8 (£4)

New and established comics take to the stage (found upstairs at Holiday Inn Lime Street), for an evening of chuckles with their resident compere leading the way.

Sat 07 Jun

PHILBERTO (TOM TOAL + DALISO CHAPONDA + MC DAVE TWENTYMAN)

COMEDY CENTRAL, 18:00–22:00, £18

Milo McCabe presents the lovely Portuguese reality TV star, Philberto, the star of Live On The Floor For A Month.

PAUL TONKINSON (STE PORTER + MC NEIL FITZMAURICE) THE SLAUGHTERHOUSE, 20:00–23:00, £17.50

The Yorkshire chap – a former double award-winning Time Out Comedian of the Year – takes to the road. BOILING POINT (MC PAUL SMITH)

HOLIDAY INN, 19:00–22:30, £10 (£5)

New and established comics take to the stage (found upstairs at Holiday Inn Lime Street), for an evening of chuckles with their resident compere leading the way.

Sun 08 Jun SAM BRADY: KINDNESS

THE LANTERN THEATRE, 19:30–22:00, £8.50 (£6.50)

Comedian and failed Buddhist Monk, Sam Brady takes his comic show inspired by a random act of kindness on the road. TESTING THE WATER (MC PAUL SMITH)

HOLIDAY INN, 19:00–22:30, £3 (£1.50)

Showcase night for up-andcomers and undiscovered stars, offering a great value night out if you don’t mind being a comedy guinea pig.

Wed 11 Jun

SHINY NEW COMEDY LAB (ALASTAIR CLARK + BECKY WEBB + TOBY HALL + BINTY BLAIR + LIAM PICKFORD) THE LANTERN THEATRE, 19:30–22:30, FREE

Variety comedy night pioneered by Alastair Clark, sticking to his ethos of booking anything, as long as its funny.

Thu 12 Jun

KEITH CARTER AS NIGE (DAVID LONGLEY + DALIA MALEK + MC MIKE WILKINSON)

COMEDY CENTRAL, 18:00–22:00, £15

Keith Carter presents the lovable scouse, Nige, renowned for securing Liverpool the title of Capital of Culture, so they say.

Fri 13 Jun

KEITH CARTER AS NIGE (DAVID LONGLEY + SCOTT BENNETT + MC MIKE WILKINSON)

COMEDY CENTRAL, 18:00–22:00, £15

Keith Carter presents the lovable scouse, Nige, renowned for securing Liverpool the title of Capital of Culture, so they say. HEADLINE TBC (STEVE GRIBBIN + JOSEPH WILSON + MC CHRIS CAIRNS)

THE SLAUGHTERHOUSE, 20:00–23:00, £15

Regular triple headline show, with three comics lined up to tickle your funny bone. BOILING POINT (MC PAUL SMITH)

HOLIDAY INN, 19:00–22:30, £8 (£4)

BOILING POINT (MC PAUL SMITH) HOLIDAY INN, 19:00–22:30, £8 (£4)

New and established comics take to the stage (found upstairs at Holiday Inn Lime Street), for an evening of chuckles with their resident compere leading the way.

Sat 21 Jun

GARY DELANEY (GARETH RICHARDS + ANGELA BARNES + MC JIM SMALLMAN) COMEDY CENTRAL, 18:00–22:00, £18

Writer and stand-up comic Gary Delaney continues with his quest to tell as many jokes as possible, because apparently most shows simply don’t contain enough for his liking.

SEYMOUR MACE (DALISO CHAPONDA + CHRIS CAIRNS + MC NEIL FITZMAURICE) THE SLAUGHTERHOUSE, 20:00–23:00, £17.50

Triple headline show with a delightfully hilarious line-up of circuit funny-folk. BOILING POINT (MC PAUL SMITH)

HOLIDAY INN, 19:00–22:30, £10 (£5)

New and established comics take to the stage (found upstairs at Holiday Inn Lime Street), for an evening of chuckles with their resident compere leading the way.

Sun 22 Jun

TESTING THE WATER (MC PAUL SMITH)

HOLIDAY INN, 19:00–22:30, £3 (£1.50)

New and established comics take to the stage (found upstairs at Holiday Inn Lime Street), for an evening of chuckles with their resident compere leading the way.

Showcase night for up-andcomers and undiscovered stars, offering a great value night out if you don’t mind being a comedy guinea pig.

Sat 14 Jun

Thu 26 Jun

KEITH CARTER AS NIGE (DAVID LONGLEY + SCOTT BENNETT + MC MIKE WILKINSON)

COMEDY CENTRAL, 18:00–22:00, £18

Keith Carter presents the lovable scouse, Nige, renowned for securing Liverpool the title of Capital of Culture, so they say. STEVE GRIBBIN (JOSEPH WILSON + MC CHRIS CAIRNS)

THE SLAUGHTERHOUSE, 20:00–23:00, £17.50

Triple headline show with a delightfully hilarious line-up of circuit funny-folk. BOILING POINT (MC PAUL SMITH)

HOLIDAY INN, 19:00–22:30, £10 (£5)

New and established comics take to the stage (found upstairs at Holiday Inn Lime Street), for an evening of chuckles with their resident compere leading the way.

Sun 15 Jun

TESTING THE WATER (MC PAUL SMITH)

HOLIDAY INN, 19:00–22:30, £3 (£1.50)

Showcase night for up-andcomers and undiscovered stars, offering a great value night out if you don’t mind being a comedy guinea pig.

BEN NORRIS (ROB HEENEY + RICHARD MASSARA + MC LOU CONRAN)

COMEDY CENTRAL, 18:00–22:00, £15

Three-strong line-up, headed up by Mock the Week funny man Ben Norris. BOILING POINT (MC PAUL SMITH)

HOLIDAY INN, 19:00–22:30, £6 (£4)

New and established comics take to the stage (found upstairs at Holiday Inn Lime Street), for an evening of chuckles with their resident compere leading the way.

Fri 27 Jun

BEN NORRIS (ROB HEENEY + MIKE NEWALL + MC LOU CONRAN)

COMEDY CENTRAL, 18:00–22:00, £15

Three-strong line-up, headed up by Mock the Week funny man Ben Norris.

MICK FERRY (JOHN FOTHERGILL + CHRIS MCCAUSLAND + MC STE PORTER)

THE SLAUGHTERHOUSE, 20:00–23:00, £15

Triple headline show with a delightfully hilarious line-up of circuit funny-folk. BOILING POINT (MC PAUL SMITH)

HOLIDAY INN, 19:00–22:30, £8 (£4)

Thu 19 Jun

New and established comics take to the stage (found upstairs at Holiday Inn Lime Street), for an evening of chuckles with their resident compere leading the way.

COMEDY CENTRAL, 18:00–22:00, £15

Sat 28 Jun

GARY DELANEY (GARETH RICHARDS + TONY BASNETT + MC JIM SMALLMAN)

Writer and stand-up comic Gary Delaney continues with his quest to tell as many jokes as possible, because apparently most shows simply don’t contain enough for his liking. JEFF LEACH: FIT (WORK IN PROGRESS)

HOLIDAY INN, 19:00–22:30, £10

Jeff Leach presents some in progress material designed to make you chuckle.

Fri 20 Jun

GARY DELANEY (GARETH RICHARDS + ANGELA BARNES + MC JIM SMALLMAN) COMEDY CENTRAL, 18:00–22:00, £15

Writer and stand-up comic Gary Delaney continues with his quest to tell as many jokes as possible, because apparently most shows simply don’t contain enough for his liking. DALISO CHAPONDA (SEYMOUR MACE + CHRIS CAIRNS + MC NEIL FITZMAURICE)

THE SLAUGHTERHOUSE, 20:00–23:00, £15

Malawian comic, with a career spanning Canada, South Africa and more recently, the UK.

BEN NORRIS (ROB HEENEY + MIKE NEWALL + MC LOU CONRAN)

COMEDY CENTRAL, 18:00–22:00, £18

Three-strong line-up, headed up by Mock the Week funny man Ben Norris.

JOHN FOTHERGILL (MICK FERRY + CHRIS MCCAUSLAND + MC STE PORTER) THE SLAUGHTERHOUSE, 20:00–23:00, £17.50

Triple headline show with a delightfully hilarious line-up of circuit funny-folk. BOILING POINT (MC PAUL SMITH)

HOLIDAY INN, 19:00–22:30, £6 (£4)

New and established comics take to the stage (found upstairs at Holiday Inn Lime Street), for an evening of chuckles with their resident compere leading the way.

Sun 29 Jun

TESTING THE WATER (MC PAUL SMITH)

HOLIDAY INN, 19:00–22:30, £3 (£1.50)

Showcase night for up-andcomers and undiscovered stars, offering a great value night out if you don’t mind being a comedy guinea pig.

THE SKINNY


Art

Manchester 5th Floor Federation House YELLOW BANANA

3–5 JUN, TIMES VARY, FREE

Students from The Manchester College present a varied collection of photographic work, spanning traditional landscapes to more conceptual work.

Bankley Studios & Gallery A DREAM WITHIN A DREAM

VARIOUS DATES BETWEEN 15 MAY AND 7 JUN, 12:00PM – 4:00PM, FREE

An exploration of abstract painting as it treads the line between reality and illusion – much like dreaming and the unconscious state – venturing into ideas of cognitive flow and abstract painting as an immersive experience. UNMADE IN ENGLAND

VARIOUS DATES BETWEEN 14 JUN AND 5 JUL, 12:00PM – 4:00PM, FREE

Amanda Whewell brings her Unmade in England project to Manchester’s Bankley Gallery.

Castlefield Gallery SNAIL PORRIDGE

VARIOUS DATES BETWEEN 9 MAY AND 15 JUN, 1:00PM – 6:00PM, FREE

An exhibition of artwork, music and writing from prisons, secure hospitals, secure children’s homes and people on probation throughout the Northwest, curated by Bob and Roberta Smith from entries to the Koestler Awards.

Centre For Chinese Contemporary Art

THE TAKEAWAY: STANLEY CHOW

VARIOUS DATES BETWEEN 11 APR AND 21 JUN, 10:00AM – 5:00PM, FREE

For his first solo UK retrospective, Manchester-born illustrator Stanley Chow will present a collection of his childhood memories, taking viewers on an immersive trip down memory lane.

CHRIS SHEN: FIRST STEP SHOWCASE

VARIOUS DATES BETWEEN 10 MAY AND 13 SEP, 10:00AM – 5:00PM, FREE

The Manchester-based artist takes over the CFCCA stairwell with his innovative project exploring our day to day relationship with technology, encouraging the viewer to consider the impact.

Cornerhouse

CLIFFORD OWENS: BETTER THE REBEL YOU KNOW

VARIOUS DATES BETWEEN 10 MAY AND 17 AUG, TIMES VARY, FREE

For his debut European exhibition, Clifford Owens will display existing work alongside two new commissions: a UK version of a piece he developed for New York’s MoMA PS1, and a participatory piece involving Manchester residents. CORNERHOUSE PROJECTS: IAN MCKAY

VARIOUS DATES BETWEEN 15 MAY AND 17 JUN, TIMES VARY, FREE

Manchester-based artist Ian McKay presents his observational documentation following the rise and fall of the British seaside town, utilising paint and print to depict the familiar calm of seaside towns with melancholic undertones.

Gallery of Costume

OSSIE CLARK, A BRITISH FASHION GENUIS, 1967-1977

30 JAN – 29 JUN, TIMES VARY, FREE

13 MAY – 20 JUN, WEEKDAYS ONLY, 10:00AM – 11:00PM, FREE

Photographer Pam Van-Damned presents a collection of photographs documenting bands, inspirational figures and drag queens, with the majority often captured wearing make-up, a dominant theme in her work.

GAYS OF MANCHESTER: LEE BAXTER AND GEORGE HOUSE TRUST

12 MAY – 20 JUN, WEEKDAYS ONLY, 10:00AM – 11:00PM, FREE

An exhibition of Lee Baxter’s work, capturing portraits of LGBT people from Manchester, celebrating the communities ongoing support of George House Trust, a charity working people people affected by HIV.

June 2014

13 MAR – 7 SEP, TIMES VARY, FREE

A three part exhibition – split into The Human Condition, Abstraction and Transformations – exploring the boundaries between sculpture, craft and design, and the ways the form has been re-invented over the years. BERNHARD SCHOBINGER

5 JUN – 7 SEP, TIMES VARY, FREE

An exhibition of jewellry by avantgarde contemporary designer Bernhard Schobinger, utlising precious stones alongside salvaged scraps – including poison bottles and worn erasers – cementing his reputation as something of an alchemist.

An exhibition exploring the ways Britain’s Jews have taken to the beautiful game, tracing football’s roots from the 19th century to the present day.

WOMEN AND INDUSTRY IN THE FIRST WORLD WAR

27 JAN – 31 JUL, 10:00AM – 5:00PM, FREE

An open air photographic exhibition of work by George Parham Lewis, revealing images of women during the First World War as they took on roles in industry during the conflict. FROM STREET TO TRENCH: A WORLD WAR THAT SHAPED A REGION

5 APR – 1 MAY, 10:00AM – 5:00PM, FREE

An exhibition of over 200 objects, photographs, diaries, letters and artworks from the First World War, revealing the lives shaped by the conflict. Marking the centenary of WWI. REACTIONS14: VERTICAL ECHOES BY BILL FONTANA

16 MAY – 21 SEP, 10:00AM – 5:00PM, FREE

Sound artist and composer Bill Fontana presents a specially commissioned installation, as part of the Imperial War Museum’s Reactions14 series, inviting artists to commemorate the centenary of the First World War.

REACTIONS14: THE SLEEPING GREEN BETWEEN BY JENNIFER VICKERS

14 JUN – 21 SEP, 10:00AM – 5:00PM, FREE

4 APR – 24 SEP, TIMES VARY, FREE

PAM VAN-DAMNED: WORLD WARPAINT

SCULPTURAL FORMS: A CENTURY OF EXPERIMENT

Imperial War Museum North

MMU: Special Collections

Contact

An exhibition of large-scale works exploring the re-development of Manchester Central Library, built up on the artists’ research into the city archives, photographs and from recorded tales.

Manchester Jewish Museum

Common

The latest exhibition to take over Common will see local illustrators and makers Caroline Dowsett and Alex T. Frazer tell the story of a man lost at sea and his heartbroken wife.

22 MAR – 22 JUN, TIMES VARY, FREE

A retrospective of work by renowned British fashion designer, Ossie Clark, famous for his distinct cuts and for working with bold prints designed by his wife, Celia Birtwell.

Textile artist Jennifer Vickers presents a specially commissioned quilt inspired by her connections to the past – part of the Imperial War Museum’s Reactions14 series, inviting artists to commemorate the centenary of the First World War.

SAILING THROUGH THE TREES: CAROLINE DOWSETT + ALEX T. FRAZER

DAN DUBOWITZ AND ALAN WARD: CITIZEN MANCHESTER

TIGERS, CATERPILLARS AND OTHER WILD THINGS: CHILDREN’S BOOKS IN THE 1960S

16 JUN – 5 SEP, NOT SUNDAYS, TIMES VARY, FREE

An exhibition of much-loved children’s books of the 1960s, featuring well-known publishers such as Ladybird and Puffin, and authors and illustrators including Eric Carle, Roald Dahl, Alan Garner and Dr Seuss.

Manchester Art Gallery

A HIGHLAND ROMANCE: VICTORIAN VIEWS OF SCOTTISHNESS

20–1 SEP, TIMES VARY, FREE

A collection of 19th century paintings and works on paper by Scottish artists, displayed alongside visions of Scotland by artists from England, exploring the changing view of Scotland and Scottishness over the past two centuries. ART FOR ALL: THOMAS HORSFALL’S GIFT TO MANCHESTER

29 NOV – 8 JUN, TIMES VARY, FREE

An exhibition of nature-themed artworks from Manchester’s Thomas Horsfall collection, cocurated by local school children.

FOUR FOUR JEW: FOOTBALL, FANS AND FAITH

VARIOUS DATES BETWEEN 18 MAR AND 21 SEP, TIMES VARY, £3.95 (£2.95)

Manchester Metropolitan University MMU: DEGREE SHOW 2014

13–25 JUN, 9:00AM – 5:00PM, FREE

End of year show celebrating the achievements of students in their final year at the Manchester School of Art, housed in the Benzie, Grosvenor and Chatham Buildings.

Manchester Museum

FROM THE WAR OF NATURE

11 APR – 31 AUG, 10:00AM – 5:00PM, FREE

An exhibition exploring conflict and resolution in nature – from boxing hares to prowling wolves – challenging the notion that war must come from conflict.

MediaCityUK CREATE SALFORD 2014

12–14 JUN, TIMES VARY, FREE

Final year students from the University of Salford’s School of Arts and Media host a three day festival of events spanning music, art and comedy.

Museum of Science and Industry

COME CLOSER: WINNERS OF THE WELLCOME IMAGE AWARDS 2014

12 MAR – 7 SEP, 10:00AM – 5:00PM, FREE

An exhibition of images from the Wellcome Image Awards 2014 – from an x-ray of a bat, to a cross section of a flower bud – showcasing the scientists, medical professionals and image makers traversing science and art. OPEN FOR BUSINESS

23 MAY – 3 AUG, 10:00AM – 5:00PM, FREE

A touring exhibition of work commissioned by Multistory and Magnum Photos arrives in the Northwest, with the artist assigned to the Northwest – Argentinian photographer Alessandra Sanguinetti – displaying a collection of photographs documenting contemporary British industry, from wig makers to engineering.

National Football Museum DESIGN DERBY

7 JUN, 12:00PM – 5:00PM, FREE

The National Football Museum join forces with Manchester Print Fair to bring creative designers from across the UK assemble to Manchester to present their work inspired by the beautiful game, with the chance to buy some of the artworks on the day.

Paper Gallery PAPER #13: JEMIMA BROWN: UNTITLED PROFILE PICTURES

VARIOUS DATES BETWEEN 26 APR AND 26 JUL, 11:00AM – 5:00PM, FREE

The latest exhibition from PAPER will see artist Jemima Brown to share her ongoing drawing project for which she produces drawings of her friends public Facebook profile pictures.

Salford Museum and Art Gallery RANDOM VISUAL POEMS: CHARLIE HOLT

5 APR – 6 JUL, TIMES VARY, FREE

An exhibition of work drawing influences from pop art and surrealism, and comprising cut and paste collages and digital montages inspired by Manchester and Salford.

The International 3 HANNAH DARGAVEL-LEAFE : SMALL CONNECTING PART

SCIENCE FICTION: NEW DEATH

14 MAY – 22 JUN, TIMES VARY, FREE

An exhibition exploring modern science fiction, inspired by J. G. Ballard’s landscapes of the future and underpinned by a narrative crafted by China Mieville, with video works, installations and a personal archive made up of open call submissions. ELLIE HARRISON: EARLY WARNING SIGNS

9 MAY – 31 DEC, TIMES VARY, FREE

Touring exhibition of Harrison’s four signs that utilise brash marketing techniques to draw attention to climate change.

International Slavery Museum LAURA FACEY: THEIR SPIRITS...

31 JAN – 7 SEP, 10:00AM – 5:00PM, FREE

Jamaican artist, Laura Facey presents an exhibition exploring the cruelty of slavery and the transcendent nature of the human spirit, with her 2006 piece, Their Spirits Gone Before Them sitting at the heart of the exhibition. BRUTAL EXPOSURE: THE CONGO

24 JAN – 7 SEP, 10:00AM – 5:00PM, FREE

A distressing exhibition of photographs by missionary Alice Seeley Harris, documenting her time in the Congo and exploring the brutality experienced by the Congolese people in what was probably the first photographic campaign for human rights. LIBERTY BOUND

4–5 APR, 10:00AM – 5:00PM, FREE

Metal

THE LIVERPOOL ART PRIZE 2014

VARIOUS DATES BETWEEN 8 MAY AND 17 JUN, TIMES VARY, FREE

The Liverpool Art Prize returns for its eighth year, with the three shortlisted local artists competing for a cash prize and solo exhibition at The Bluecoat – this year Brigitte Jurak, Tabitha Jussa and Jason Thompson make up the shortlist. See the work on display at Metal and have your say in the public vote.

Museum of Liverpool

APRIL ASHLEY: PORTRAIT OF A LADY

27–21 SEP, 10:00AM – 5:00PM, FREE

A exhibition exploring the life of April Ashley, the Liverpool-born Vogue model and actress and one of the first people in the world to undergo gender reassignment surgery. FROM THERE TO HERE

2 MAY – 13 JUL, 10:00AM – 5:00PM, FREE

Wicked Fish present an exhibition exploring the changing family, social and cultural history of Merseyside residents with learning disabilities, examining how these groups often find their stories excluded from history.

Open Eye Gallery

EBB AND FLOW: A VISUAL CHRONICLE OF THE CHANGES WITHIN LIVERPOOL’S CHINATOWN

VARIOUS DATES BETWEEN 17 MAY AND 22 JUN, 10:30AM – 5:30PM, FREE

An exhibition of artifacts from one of the most important archaeological finds of recent years, unveiling a recently discovered burial ground fro ‘liberated’ African’s in Rupert’s Valley, St Helena.

An audio-visual survey curated by Jill Carruthers, charting the history and changes seen within Liverpool’s vibrant Chinese community, the oldest of its kind in Europe.

The Lowry

Lady Lever Art Gallery

Sudley House

8 MAR – 27 JUL, TIMES VARY, FREE

20 JUN – 21 SEP, 10:00AM – 5:00PM, FREE

VARIOUS DATES BETWEEN 28 JUN AND 1 AUG, 12:00PM – 5:00PM, FREE

Solo exhibition of work by artist Hannah Dargavel-Leafe, exploring her diverse practice which often focusses on the structures of the city. IN THE FRAME: DANCE ON FILM

Releasing dance from the constraints of the stage, this exhibition of film work explores how visual artists, choreographers and dance companies can use moving image to capture the art form. JONATHAN YEO: PORTRAITS

15 MAR – 29 JUN, TIMES VARY, FREE

An exhibition of work by selftaught, British portrait painter Jonathan Yeo, bringing together his most famous subjects, including Helena Bonham Carter and Grayson Perry. The final work is shown alongside preparatory materials.

The Portico Library

A NORTHERN NARRATIVE

4–30 JUN, NOT SUNDAYS, TIMES VARY, FREE

Bringing together four leading artists from the UK – David Alderman, David Coulter, Peter Stanaway and Amrik Varkalis – for the first time, A Northern Narrative will see the artists find inspiration in the North.

ROSSETTI’S OBSESSION

20TH CENTURY CHIC: 100 YEARS OF WOMEN’S FASHION 10 MAY – 31 DEC, 10:00AM – 5:00PM, FREE

A collection of work by PreRaphaelite painter Dante Gabriel Rossetti’s, bringing together his numerous depictions of Jane Burden Morris – the wife of poet and designer William Morris and Rossett’s favoured model.

A collection of 12 evening outfits spanning 1900 to 2000, charting the changing role of women in society throughout this period, and how these changes were reflected in the fashion of the time.

Merseyside Maritime Museum

An exhibition of work by participants from the Merseycare NHS Trust, exploring ideas of identity and personal journeys of recovery.

SAIL AWAY: LIVERPOOL SHIPPING POSTERS

16 MAY – 1 JAN, 10:00AM – 5:00PM, FREE

An exhibition charting the evolution and design development in shipping posters between 1888 and 1980.

ENIGMA

10 APR – 31 JUL, 10:00AM – 5:00PM, FREE

Tate Liverpool NASREEN MOHAMEDI

6 JUN – 5 OCT, 10:00AM – 5:00PM, £10 (£7.50)

Paintings, drawings and photographs by celebrated Indian artist Nasreen Mohademi are set to go on display for her largest solo exhibition in the UK, introducing visitors to her varied practice within the modernist tradition.

MONDRIAN AND HIS STUDIOS 6 JUN – 5 OCT, 10:00AM – 5:00PM, £10 (£7.50)

Marking 70 years since his death, Tate Liverpool brings together a special exhibition of work by Dutch abstract artist Piet Mondrian, complete with life size reconstruction of his Paris studio.

The Bluecoat THE NEGLIGENT EYE

8 MAR – 15 JUN, 10:00AM – 6:00PM, FREE

A group exhibition curated by Jo Stockham, exploring the shift in the increasingly critical approach to technology, through print, sculpture, video and mixed media work. THE BIG SATURDAY

7 JUN, 12:00PM – 5:00PM, FREE

All day, family-friendly event kick-starting the Liverpool Arab Arts Festival. CHOOSE YOUR OWN ADVENTURE

7 JUN, 10:00AM – 6:00PM, FREE

Playing with the format of choose your own adventure, Arab designers will be utilising The Bluecoat’s public spaces to imagine eight alternative worlds, with themes including urbanism and current affairs. Part of Liverpool Arab Arts Festival. AL NOOR: FRAGILE VISION

7 JUN, 10:00AM – 6:00PM, FREE

Rachel Gadsden presents her work grounded in the notion of art and culture acting as common ground for discourse around political and religious topics. Part of Liverpool Arab Arts Festival.

Victoria Gallery and Museum

NORTH WEST AND BEYOND: JAMES HAMILTON HAY

VARIOUS DATES BETWEEN 22 APR AND 30 AUG, 10:00AM – 5:00PM, FREE

An exhibition of drypoint prints by 19th century Merseyside etcher and painter, James Hamilton Hay, documenting his travels throughout the UK with his striking landscape prints.

Walker Art Gallery

GRAYSON PERRY: THE VANITY OF SMALL DIFFERENCES

16 MAY – 10 AUG, 10:00AM – 5:00PM, FREE

Inspired by William Hogarth’s A Rake’s Progress, artist Grayson Perry created six tapestries to tell the story of class mobility and the influence of social class on aesthetic taste. PORTRAIT OF THE ENGRAVER

13 DEC – 30 JUN, 10:00AM – 5:00PM, FREE

The Wirral-born artist James Hamilton Hay is the focus of this exhibition of landscapes and city etchings, showcasing his life’s work after leaving the Liverpool School of Art and seeking the guidance of British Impressionist Julius Olsson. DOT-ART SCHOOLS’ ART COMPETITION

16 MAY – 8 JUN, 10:00AM – 5:00PM, FREE

The Brink

An exhibition of work from the dot-art Schools’ art competition by primary and secondary school pupils from across Liverpool. Opens on May 16 as part of LightNight 2014.

14 MAY – 27 JUN, TIMES VARY, FREE

13 MAY – 31 DEC, 10:00AM – 5:00PM, FREE

MAKE YOUR MARK

Taking the Brink ethos – what we make makes us – as a starting point, this exhibition will bring together creative recovery service users from across Liverpool to share their journey and make their mark.

JOHN BATES AT JEAN VARON

A collection of 12 outfits from John Bates’ Jean Varon label go on display at the Walker Art Gallery, including a red velvet mini dress worn by Twiggy in a Vogue photo shoot in 1967.

The Cornerstone Gallery LIVERPOOL HOPE UNIVERSITY FINE AND APPLIED ARTS DEGREE SHOW

2–6 JUN, 9:00AM – 5:00PM, FREE

The final year students from Liverpool Hope University fine and applied arts degree programme present their work spanning painting, sculpture, jewellery design and ceramics.

The John Lennon Art and Design Building LIVERPOOL SCHOOL OF ART AND DESIGN DEGREE SHOW

29 MAY – 13 JUN, TIMES VARY, FREE

Graduates from Liverpool John Moores University’s School of Art and Design take over the John Lennon Art and Design Building for a two week exhibition of cutting-edge work from the areas of architecture, fashion, fine art, graphic design and illustration, interior design and popular music studies.

Liverpool Art Central Library

AN EXHIBITION OF ARTISTS’ BOOKS

2 JUN – 6 JUL, TIMES VARY, FREE

COLLIDER

An opportunity to paw through the work books of various artists, creating an eclectic exhibition of contemporary work, displayed alongside rare works from the library’s special collection.

23 MAY – 28 SEP, 10:00AM – 5:00PM, £7 (£5)

Dot Art

An immersive experience, transporting visitors to the Large Hydron Collider located at the CERN facility in Switzerland, offering a behind-the-scenes glimpse at the world’s leading particle physics lab.

FACT

HEARTS AND FLOWERS: SUSAN FINCH

12 MAY – 27 JUN, WEEKDAYS ONLY, 12:00PM – 6:00PM, FREE

Scotland-born, Liverpool-based artist Susan Finch presents a collection of drawings and paintings employing expressionistic style and vibrant colour.

Listings

55


The Skinny Northwest June 2014  

The Skinny Northwest is Liverpool and Manchester's leading entertainment and listings magazine

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