All posts by Emily Pugh

NEW MUSIC: CARLOS DANGER takes us on a trip back to the 80s with Neon Daydreams EP

CARLOS DANGER is the latest project by Sam Butcher who takes us on a journey back to the 80s in an attempt to go all in on the sound of 80s pop.

Setting off with his debut release, Carlos’ Neon Daydreams EP has a combination of upbeat tracks as well as other more mellow ones. With this guise being part of a group project named The Taurus; Neon Daydreams aims to be a prologue for this next project.

Bouncy Balls sets the EP off and belongs back in the realms of the Mario Kart 64 soundtrack. Made up of groovy beats and retro sound effects the track gives off a (literally) bouncy and vibrant feel. Track 3, Puppy Love is just as upbeat and similarly belongs on the tracklist of an 80s computer game.

Demarco-esque Blue comes second on the EP and is just over 3 minutes of shoe-gaze psychedelia giving listeners a ride back to the late 80s.

Palm Tree Passion has a funky sound to it with a slightly western edge in parts. As  Butcher’s personal favourite on the EP, he told us:

“I was trying to emulate an 80s cop show/movie theme tune like Miama Vice or Beverly Hills Cop”

Redbone is the final track on the EP which is a cover of the Childish Gambino tune by the same name, a different take on the track, which Butcher described to us as “almost vaporwavey”.

You can stream the EP on Soundcloud:

Sam Butcher has also been involved in other projects including playing lead guitar for indie-rock band Mirror Gorillas & releasing a solo EP back in 2016, find him on social media below:

Twitter

INTRODUCING: Go Gracious

With the release of their debut track Shake, and more material already well in the works, it’s looking to be a huge year for people pop group GO GRACIOUS.

Emily chatted with the Brixton based band to find out more about them…

Hi guys and welcome to indieblogfest! Could you tell us a bit about yourselves?

Dee: You may or may not be surprised to hear Go Gracious is actually a duo! (loosely based on if the person reading this has listened to our music. If you haven’t I’m not sure what you are waiting for?)

   Dee: I sing and play guitars, I was born in a small town on the south coast called Folkestone; basically as south as you can get without getting wet. Morris, who plays Drums and does a little bit of singing himself, was born in Peterborough. I have only ever been there once and I remember the house we were staying in had no light switches…. all the lights would just automatically come on as you walked in each room. True Story. We now live in Brixton, London and we formed late 2016, so very fresh faced and ready to go.

What made you guys want to start making music together?

Dee: We actually met on tour working for a band called Get Inuit. Morris is their Sound Engineer and I was Tour Managing them at the time. It was around a festival camp fire that Morris asked if I ever played music myself and I had that awkward moment of gently telling him that not only did I play music, he had also seen my band before. So we must have been memorable. After a few sips of Whiskey and a little jog of the old memory (we do see a lot of shows), Morris asked if I’d like to hit the studio with him to rework and produce some tunes. Shake being the first of said songs.

Morris: In my defence, you’d lost about a stone in weight, a pair of glasses and a ridiculous bandana between our conversation and me seeing your band.

What was the idea behind your name?

Dee: Well; first of all who doesn’t love alliteration? It’s the perfectly pretentious platform for professional performance! AM I RIGHT? No but seriously, it sounds really cool to say.

Grace is something that we all lack. I really don’t think you can ever be graceful enough in this world that seems to be falling out from underneath us at an alarming rate. So i say: if you are going through Hell keep going…. I think its really important that if we have to struggle through certain things we do it with grace. Sure, we may sound like hippies but I don’t have a problem with that as long as people know that we are about being good to each other.

Morris: As I recall, I let Dee name the band so I’d never have to answer this question.

So you recently released your debut single ‘Shake’ (Exciting!), have you got anymore material in the works?

Dee: YES! It still feels really weird to be able to say our debut single has finally been released. There’s a lot of hard work and love gone into something that only lasts three minutes, but its a bloody good three minutes ay? We are planning on releasing a three track EP very, very soon…. The progression of the project was always going to be a slow ride for us. Nothing rushed and everything relaxed. Then we released Shake and we received such amazing positive feedback now we are throwing every spare minute we have into our first EP hahaha.

Morris: I’ve got no idea what he’s talking about: I’ve been working on this stuff for months…

Who are some of your favourites bands/artists?

Dee: I could ramble on and on for days about this but ill try my best to keep it short!
The lineage ‘Bruce Springsteen’ left in the East Coast of the states changed my life…..

‘The Menzingers’, ‘The front Bottoms’, ‘PUP’ all give me chills deep into my revolutionary heart! ‘The Smith Street band’ and ‘Camp Cope’ fighting the good fight over in OZ. Seriously if you are a fan of song smithery that will make your soul ignite? Listen to ‘Will Wagner’ from The Smith street band.

More close to home? I really respect bands that can write a huge pop banger but still be cool if you get my drift? Catfish and the Bottlemen, Deaf Havana and The Hunna seriously nail that every damn time!

Morris: I’m also going to do my best to keep this short. It’s a dangerous game to ask musicians about music…

My favourite music changes every other day, but currently I’m really enjoying Spring King; I love their energy and live they are totally disarming by being indescribably nice, and having a confusingly polite stage persona, then smashing you in the face with big guitars and gang vocals.

I’ve recently rediscovered “One Hundred and Thirteen” by a band called Middleman. I’ve still not found anything that comes close to it’s lyrical beauty.
And I’m unashamedly pleased that Taylor Swift is back on Spotify.

Were you particularly influenced by any of these as a group?

Dee: I think the songwriting aspect of Go Gracious; very much so. I have always been in love with the revolutionary vibe and the really comes out of my influences. From a production perspective, what Morris adds is something of miracle to me haha, he makes every song turn into a huge pop masterpiece, I feel like he pushes our sound more towards 30 seconds to Mars and the Killers…. #noregrets. The combination of my blue collar writing attitude and his unbounded take on huge soundscape is what makes Go Gracious.

Morris: I’ll definitely admit to being influenced by This is War. It’s an album that changed how I thought about music. And I definitely have more of a pop sensibility than Dee. When the 2 of us started Go Gracious, we did so without any boundaries in terms of style or instrumentation, so I took influences, in varying degrees, from pretty much everything I’ve every listened to. It sounds odd to say but my biggest influence is probably Dee, because I’m always working from his starting point and expanding from there.

What are your hopes for the future?

Dee: I think success is absolutely subjective, but my hopes are honestly to be able to play music in front of as many people as possible. Go around the world twice and talk to everyone once….. also it would be pretty good to have a live horns section. Who doesn’t want horns?

Morris: I like to measure success in terms of memories, rather than anything as crude as money. If the music we make can improve just 1 person’s mood, I’ll feel like it’s been worthwhile. That being said, I’d love to be able to make music and generate enough income to not die too. We can have a conversation in private about the horn section.

If you were going to space and could only take 3 things with you, what would you bring?

Dee:

1. The complete collection of Indieblogfest back catalogue printed so I have something to read 😉

2. Probably a guitar. So I can serenade Morris which will absolutely ruin space for him.

3. A framed picture of Justin Timberlake….. on the odd chance I am the first contact with Aliens there is absolutely no way I would reply to the obligatory “Take us to your leader” with “Oh, well, his name is Donald Trump and um, well, I have a lot to explain”. So I will be rewriting history and naming JT the leader of the free world and Commander-in-Chief and there won’t be a single earthling there to stop me.

Morris: Do I have to go with him?! Ok…

1) Earplugs; to cope with the incessant serenading.

2) A gag; because there is no way I’m letting Humanity’s first introduction to an Alien race come from him.

3) A jacket; in case it’s cold.

Describe your sound in a few words!

Dee:  Feel good groove, infectious melodies, with a blue collar punk sensibility! Think Bruce Springsteen’s English love-child raised in Las Vegas.

Morris: Sounds like 2 fools with extremely limited musical ability took on an ill-advised, entirely limitless project with a handful of decent ideas, a few excellent acquaintances, and no shortage of passion.

Thanks guys for taking the time to answer our questions!

Shake is an up-beat, feel good tune led largely by guitars, but with elements of driving percussion. Sink your ears into it below:

Keep up to date with the bands releases and gigs:

Twitter

Track of the week: Lie Low – Fox Chapel

Dark noise quartet Fox Chapel have made their first release of 2017 with brand new track Lie Low.

A mixture of psychedelic hooks and dark lyrics, Lie Low portrays a dystopian, post-punk vibe from the start. The track is a 3 minute slice of mysterious, electric instrumental combined with husky, ethereal vocals which – much like their previous track Ice Cream – hint toward influence from 80s and 90s punk.

Lie Low is an A-class tune and it is clear Fox Chapel have a firmly developed sound which will see them go far; I can’t wait to hear what’s next to come.

Check out the music video which was written and directed by Benn Veasey:

Make your way down to the single launch on July 18th at The Lock Tavern in London.

The lads told us they’ve been demoing loads over the last few months and are hoping to make another release around October.

Keep an eye on their Twitter for updates on new music and gigs:

Feature image courtesy of: Sam Farmer

FAVOURITES TO SEE AT Y NOT FESTIVAL 2017

At the end of July Y Not festival returns to Derbyshire, with previous years having seen the likes of Noel Gallagher, The Wombats and Circa Waves. As part of our recent series we thought we’d talk about 5 of our favourites to see at the festival which is gaining more and more popular by the year.

Stereophonics

As the Saturday headliners at Y Not, Welsh rockers Stereophonics are still going strong after more than 20 years. They’ve released 9 studio albums, with hints of a 10th being finished already. Responsible for some massive tunes including Local Boy in the Photograph, A Thousand Trees and C’est La Vie; as a band I’ve always wanted to see, these are top of my list for the weekend.

Oddity Road

Hailing from Sheffield, the quartet released their debut EP Handshake last year and have since racked up over 2,500 monthly listeners on Spotify; they even landed support with fellow Sheffield lads The Sherlocks on many of their UK dates. As one of the brightest bands coming onto the indie music scene this year, be sure to catch these in The Quarry on Friday.

Black Honey

Brighton born Black Honey take to The Giant Squid stage on the Sunday of Y Not. The female fronted quartet released catchy single Somebody Better in March this year and with a string of other infectious tracks under their belts I’m certain they’ll put on a fantastic show.

DMA’s

The Sydney trio gained recognition from tracks Delete and more recently their cover of Cher track Believe which gained positive speculation across social media. The band – who’s sound has led them comparison to Britpop legends Oasis – did a headline UK tour earlier on this year. If their performance in Liverpool was anything to go by, these guys sure know how to get the crowd bopping. Catch them on the Big Gin Stage on Saturday.

Happy Mondays

The Madchester icons take to the Big Gin Stage as the penultimate act on the Sunday where I’m sure we’ll hear some massive tunes from Step On and Kinky Afro; to Hallelujah and 24 Hour Party People. Get practicing your Bez moves!

Give our Y Not playlist a listen, including all these artists and a bunch of others from the lineup!

TRACK OF THE WEEK: You Wanna Know – YVES

This week’s track of the week comes from noise-pop Swindon trio YVES with their latest track You Wanna Know.

You Wanna Know is a punchy and dynamic tune. It combines indie-rock with punk-pop giving off similar vibes to the likes of Catfish and the Bottlemen, Circa Waves and Drowners. As a band who have clearly got their sound developed down to a tee, YVES’ material puts me in mind of festivals, romance and lush weather, and You Wanna Know is no exception.

The track racked up over 13,000 plays in just 24 hours, you can give it a listen below.

 YVES are playing three UK dates (18+ entry) this month:

  • July 6th – Sebright Arms, London (Free Entry)
  • July 7th – Green Store Door, Brighton
  • July 8th  The Victoria, Swindon

 

Find YVES on social media:

Twitter

Facebook

FAVOURITES TO SEE AT TRUCK FESTIVAL 2017

 Truck Festival is now just a matter of weeks away and it will see some huge acts take to the stage including The Libertines, Franz Ferdinand and The Wombats. We took a look at the lineup and picked some of our favourites to see over the course of the weekend.

Sundara Karma

Potentially the most exciting indie-pop band around at the moment, Sundara Karma released their debut album back in January and have since done a headline tour, and landed support with the likes of Two Door Cinema Club. The Reading lads take to the Truck Stage on the Saturday of the festival, never failing to put on a crowd moving set; you won’t wanna miss out.

Oscar Lulu
Sundara Karma @ Manchester Albert Hall | 16/2/17

The Wombats

Inevitably, The Wombats are one to fit in to your festival schedule. As the penultimate Truck Stage act of the Saturday, these will sure get you hyped up in time for headliners The Libertines. If you’ve seen them before you’ll know just how good of a show the Scouse trio put on; blasting out indie-anthems such as Let’s Dance to Joy Division, Moving to New York and Tokyo. 

Jaws

Synthpop quartet Jaws are an unmissable part of the Truck Fest lineup. Since forming in 2012 they’ve blessed our ears with two albums filled with dreamy tunes like Stay in, Gold, and 17. As one of the best live acts I’ve seen, these guys are definitely ones to look out for over the weekend.

IMG_5747
Jaws @ Sound Control | 30/11/16

The Big Moon

The London quartet who formed in 2014, released their debut album earlier this year; filled with numerous feel-good tracks. Anticipation to see their performance will certainly be high.

Get Inuit

The Kent quartet will headline The Barn stage on Saturday. Throughout their material there is an energetic theme with the lads describing themselves as ‘surf inspired pop’. Upbeat, breezy tracks like Pro Procrastinator and Teriyaki will give you that summer feeling.

Check out my Truck Festival Playlist filled with tracks from all of these acts, and more!

C4AK79DWQAAeOzk-1.jpg-large

Festival News: Hoyfest add local band Estrons to lineup.

Hoyfest is back for the second year running and they’ve revealed yet another act set to perform at the event.

Earlier today Hoyfest added local band Estrons to the main stage lineup. Many of Estrons tracks discuss wider issues in society, particularly shown in tracks such as She’s Here Now (Lyrics: “Just because I said I want it / Don’t mean you can call me on it / Listen close to what I’m saying / You’re not asking I am telling.”). Honestly, I only discovered them upon this announcement, however they were soon added to my playlist. If quirky bands with a punk kinda vibe take your interest, these are for you.

Other Acts

Taking the headline slot are Welsh four-piece Pretty Vicious. They’ve blessed our ears with massive tunes such as Cave Song and Are You Ready For Me. Their set is bound to be mega.

Sheffield lads Redfaces will also perform, having recently played a set at music festival Dot to Dot. Tipped to be one of the breakthroughs of 2017, their track Kerosene has racked up nearly 100,000 listens on Spotify alone since it was released last year.

You can also catch Swindon lads Misfires at the festival. The southern quartet make for a number of catchy tunes with dynamic vibes; sure to be a crowd starter. They’ve previously been championed by BBC Introducing, and quickly gained a following across social media after forming in early 2016.

Also set to play are: Himalayas, Vida, The Strawberries, Fossette, Palomino Party, Farebrother, Chroma, and The Americas. With more to be announced.

Talking about the future of the festival, the founder of Hoyfest told us: “My dream is a full weekend of camping in fields with loads of bands over several stages.”

Hoyfest have pulled some great bands out of the bag; and at just £15 a ticket, we certainly wouldn’t give it a miss. Grab your tickets here!

Keep up to date on future announcements: @hoyfest

PLAYLIST: Festival Season

So festival season is fast approaching with Download under a month away, and Glastonbury kicking off not too long after. Following on from these come the medium sized ones such as Truck Festival and Y Not, with the end of the season leaving the likes of Reading & Leeds and Bestival.

Festival Season is in my opinion the best time of year… we get to wind down to some of our favourite bands, crack open some bevs and spend some quality time with our pals. Whether you’re camping out for the weekend, or just going for a day, this playlist will be filled with some summery bangers to add to your festival playlist. Get your portable speakers ready.

1.Kids – MGMT

As a track I’ve always loved, this is an energetic tune which everyone knows – whether it be from FIFA 09, or from your mates sticking it on towards the end of a house party. Although it was released back in 2008, Kids will always be a timeless classic; sure to get you hyped for what the day holds.

2. T-Shirt Weather – Circa Waves

As cliche as this may seem, how could this track not be on this? Undoubtably Circa Waves’ biggest hit, it will forever bring me happy memories of my first festival experience, and all that came with it.

3. Lost on Me – Peace

Indie-rock quartet Peace have released plenty of catchy tunes to wind down to. Lost on Me is a funky track led by dreamy vocals and groovy instrumentals; perfect for the sunny evenings.

4. Waterfall – The Stone Roses

This is just another timeless classic which makes me quite nostalgic and happy from the opening riff. It’s a stellar hit that will be sure to get the vibes moving.

5. Something Good Can Work – Two Door Cinema Club

Two Door are set to perform at a number of festivals around the UK this year; they make for some classics hits to warm you up for the weekend. Something Good Can Work is one of many up-beat, vibrant tracks from TDCC to start your day off before you head to the arena.

6. She Changes the Weather – Swim Deep

As one of the slower tracks on the playlist, this classic guitar driven tune is so happy that it couldn’t not be on the playlist. My take on the track is that it’s about love, and spending time with someone and forgetting about the reality of everything. Not dissimilar to how festivals bring you away from the real world for a few days and often, you’ll find mates for life.

7. Your Soul – Coasts

If you’ve heard of Coasts before, it’s most likely from their biggest hit Oceans, but be assured there’s plenty more where that came from. The Bristol based indie-rock band make arena-ready tunes filled with surfy, summery riffs and rhythms; Your Soul is one. Check ’em out.

Other tracks include: Machu Picchu – The Strokes, Be Slowly – Jaws, Fire – Kasabian, Dreaming of You – The Coral, Limousine – Beach Baby

If you think there were more deserving of a mention, drop a comment below but listed are a selection picked from the playlist put together.

Listen to the full playlist: https://open.spotify.com/user/emilyrobbinspugh/playlist/1AcQCau2b57A3la0NJG5Rs 

NEW MUSIC: Overtime EP – Idle Noise

Idle Noise are one of many exciting new groups emerging from the Midlands music scene after the release of their debut EP 18 in 2016. A year on and they’ve returned, with a second EP, Overtime, which undoubtably lives up to their first and creates a sound many of us are familiar with; polished off with it’s own unique edge.

Rooftops sets the EP off as an authentic track giving off a garage kinda vibe as it intensifies. It combines dynamic riffs and percussion with appealing, slightly husky lead vocals which are delivered with ease.

Entourage is the second on the EP which the band tell us “depicts the story of a man who’s blinded by infatuation with his lover.” despite her being disloyal, uncaring and the fact she’s “been with your friends.” The track is powerfully composed throughout from the vocals to the guitars, suitably paired with the redolent message behind the lyrics.

Fortune highlights the bands ability to perform a variety of sounds. It’s an acoustic tune which gives listeners an insight into their slightly gloomier side.

Following on from this, title track Overtime closes the EP, leaving us wanting to hear more. With riffs comparable to the likes of Catfish and the Bottlemen Overtime gives off an anthemic vibe highlighting the band’s talent to write tunes which could one day fill arenas.

With many of their lyrics tending to be an “Outsiders perspective of a people living in a dream world of life and not necessarily accepting reality.” and “Relationships that are just a mess instead of success.” after just a couple of listens it became evident that this band write tunes that will be somewhat relevant to the situations of many.

If you’re into bands like Catfish and the Bottlemen, Courteeners, Circa Waves, and other indie-rock sounds from the noughties, sink your ears into this.

Overtime EP is available to listen to on iTunes/Apple Music, Spotify & Soundcloud.

Idle Noise are currently booking gigs following the release so keep up to date across social media:

Twitter

Facebook

Soundcloud

INTRODUCING: Ivory Wave

Brummie lads Ivory Wave are set to release their next single Separate Beat on 1st May, with it already receiving airtime on BBC Introducing West Midlands. They recently played their first London gig and 2017 is looking to be a huge year for them; with this being their 3rd single release since forming, and it could be their best yet.

We chatted with frontman George ahead of the release to find out more.

Can you tell us a bit about yourselves and your roles in the band?

We’re Ivory Wave from Birmingham, I’m George the singer, Luke plays bass, Connor plays guitar, Seb plays drums and Rob plays synths and keys.

You’ve recently played your first London gig, is there anywhere new you’d like to play in the next few months?

Yeah London was maaad, We’d really love to play Brighton as we know there’s a great musical heritage there Also I’d love to play the Thekla in Bristol as the venues actually on a ship. That just seems like a mad place to play to me.

How has your local music scene helped you with getting to where you are now?

The scenes always been great for us, it’s the same great group of people that go to all the gigs in the city It’s like one big family really

So your new track comes out on May 1st, could you give us an idea of the sort of sound you went for?

It’s the cross between indie guitar driven music and the dance music that we’ve been striving to recreate for a while now. I definitely feel like this is our best track to date that we can proudly say ‘this sounds like ivory wave’ and nothing else.

Who helped you produce the track?

Matt Terry from Vada Studios produced the track for us, he’s worked with the likes of The Enemy and newer bands such as White Room and Cupids.

Can we expect an EP from you guys anytime soon?

Yes that’s definitely in the pipeline for us in the near future!

How did you guys all meet?

Luke and Connor knew each other from playing in bands a few years back. I met Luke by playing in a band in Brum but me and him always talked about creating a band that bridges the gap between the genres of hip hop, dance music and guitar music so after a few months me and him wrote a few demos and Ivory Wave was born. I knew Seb through college and I used to work with Rob’s brother and he heard me talking about wanting a keyboard player in my band and passed me on to Rob.

Have any artists or tracks been influencing you guys lately?

Me and Luke really like the white room at the moment, we also really like the new track by Franko Fraize ‘lines’.

What would be your dream gig lineup?

Kasabian, NWA, Real lies

Where would you like to be as a band in 18 months time?

Who knows what time will bring for us, it’s definitely all up for us at the Minute with all the gigs we’re playing, it’s really exciting for us.

Who would you say is the funniest in the band?

Luke, the kids a nutcase

Describe your sound in a few words!

Groove groove groove!!

Cheers guys! Best of luck with the release.

Separate Beat will be released on May 1st, to keep up to date, follow them on social media:

Twitter

Facebook

Soundcloud