New Brighton Music

It’s been far too long since we made a new music post – transcribing the recent interview took forever, and rare nights out eat into the limited time we have to post. So here we are with a bit of catching up to do. Inevitably we won’t be able to write about everything we’ve sent, so we’ll do our best, and then try and catch up when we can.

We’ll kick things off properly with something brand new – this weekend ex Shrag / Blue Minkies member Steph Goodman released her debut solo album If You Know You Know. I could describe it as experimental DIY pop, but your best bet is to head over to Bandcamp and give it a listen:

Another track hot off the press is My Shirt Guy is High, the new track from Johnny Kills, officially out tomorrow, but up on Soundcloud today:

Next up we have the new single from Strange Cages, called The Cracks. Strange Cages play the Prince Albert on 13th August alongside Brighton Music Blog faves grasshopper:

Don’t Let The Sun Get In The Way is the latest video to be taken from British Sea Power‘s Let The Dancers Inherit The Party.

Wax Machine, a psych band who could teach a lot of other bands about the use of the word psychedelia, launched their new Harlequin’s Patchwork EP a couple of weeks ago with a gig at Sticky Mike’s:

Finally, for this post, is a release which has been deliberately low key. Black Bunny is the latest project from Thomas White. The Fiction Aisle is still his main project (they play at The Komedia this Thursday), but a new EP, called Gold in the Dark, with a new band name and more guitars has slipped without any announcement. Black Bunny play the Prince Albert on 13th August, supporting Piano Wire, although there’s no clues as to the identity of the band on the facebook event. Mysterious…

 

In the pub with Pete Wiggs and David Best

Saint Etienne and Fujiya & Miyagi have both had new albums out this year, so it’s only right that we put together a feature for both bands. We did a proper interview with David Best around the release of EP2 last year though, and we did something fairly extensive with Pete Wiggs when Words and Music came out, so this time round we thought we’d try a different approach. What if we went to the pub and just had a chat? No more boring interview questions that they’ve been asked a thousand times already, and more of an insight into what they’re really like coming out through the topics that came up naturally. So a couple of weeks ago we sat down in The Urchin to chew the cud about being big in China, getting trick-or-treated by Gomez, rotting whales, Twin Peaks, Columbo, Bowie, Aphex Twin and gout:

IMG_0766eesOn Festivals:
David Best: We’ve just played Glastonbury
Pete Wiggs: We played last year – It was raining.
DB: It’s the first one I’ve been to where it wasn’t raining. In a few weeks we’re playing a Festival at the bottom of Mount Etna, alongside Air, which is quite nice, then another one the week after. Then we’re playing Liverpool Psych Fest, which I’ve never been to. The line up is nuts so I’m quite excited about that.
PW: We’re doing Port Eliot Festival, down in Cornwall. I’ve been going to it the last few years. The first couple of times I took the wife and kids, because I heard it’s a good family one, then last year I couldn’t make it and the wife took the kids without me because she liked it so much! We’re playing this year and we’re all going again. It’s really nice. We’re doing Green Man as well, I’ve not been to that before.
DB: We’re hopefully going to China in the New Year. This Chinese band wanted us to do a remix, and they’re really good – kind of post punk. I suggested doing a swap and it’s snowballed from there. I wanna be big in China! There’s a label based there who are interested in reissuing our stuff. I love going to places I’ve never been to, and I love the idea of going to China.

On fellow Brighton & Hove musicians and journalists:
DB: I saw Steve Mason once. There’s some really good conker trees on Pembroke Crescent, and it just so happened that I was looking for conkers with my sons and he just walked past us. When we started, one of the bands that we were into was the Beta Band.
PW: He’s really nice actually, we’ve made friends since we’ve moved down here. He DJs sometimes at the Coopers Cask. I met him at one of those.
Brighton Music Blog: Do you ever see Simon Price?
PW: Hardly ever, actually. I occasionally see him at gigs, he’s easy to spot. I was in Brighton once, and I couldn’t tell – I think it was him without his horns on and I didn’t want to say hello because he didn’t have any make up on. It probably wasn’t him at all! Do you know Tom from Gomez?
DB: We almost shared a studio with him, but I’ve never actually met him.
PW: He’s a lovely bloke – I met him through Steve Mason. I met him in the pub and then about two weeks later it was Halloween, and I’d been out trick or treating with the kids. I came back and they went off somewhere else so it was just me in the house on my own with vampire gear on and there was a knock at the door and I’d only got two sweets left, it looked really dodgy, and it was Tom and his kids!

On Hastings:
PW: A friend of mine who lives here is just about to move to Hastings.
DB: The old town of Hastings is really lovely. Me and my girlfriend were thinking of moving there years ago, when we first had our kid. It was really lovely. But the new part is just rubbish.
PW: It’s quite Brexit
DB: I didn’t really want to bring my kids up there. We’re spoiled because Hove’s so nice, with all the parks and beaches.
PW: When I was a kid in 1976, we were staying with my grandparents in Hastings and they had this sideshow on the beach that was a blue whale. It was a like a cross between something out of League of Gentlemen and David Lynch. There was these two characters who had decked this area off, you know down by the tall black fisherman’s huts, the very creepy old bit. And they fenced it off and they got this articulated truck, and they ushered you in, you paid money, and it was literally a whale on the back of a truck, covered in tar to stop it going mouldy. Just a dead whale, with flies on it. I’m still quite impressed by it though.

On Twin Peaks:
DB: Talking of David Lynch, have you been watching Twin Peaks?
PW: No, not yet.
BMB: I read that interview about you and Twin Peaks in the Quietus which was hilarious.
PW: We were kind of obsessed with it when it first came out in the nineties.
DB: I loved it at the time, but I was a bit worried – how was it going to work? But it’s AMAZING. It’s just staggering.
BMB: I got really, really excited about it coming back. We’ve got Virgin at home, with something like a thousand Sky channels. Brilliant – I’ll be able to watch Twin Peaks! But what’s the one Sky channel we haven’t got? Sky Atlantic.
PW: We’ve got Now TV for those things, cos you can watch it on that. But our kids are a bit older and we tend to watch telly with them, so we haven’t watched Twin Peaks yet.

On writing lyrics:
BMB: Do you still write in those between albums?
DB: I don’t really write music so much, but I always try and write words. So if someone says something I write it down there and then into a note on my phone. I have them by month so I have July words, then I print them off. I’ve got this folder. But also I went through the whole of Columbo and took things from that. I love Columbo – it’s so well written. So I’ve got a big folder of eleven seasons of Columbo. I’m quite interested in Kojak, but the box set is a bit too pricey. I’m waiting till it goes down to twenty quid.
PW: You know record lists, from record dealers? We used to get sent these soul ones, on paper in those days, and we’d bring them into the studio to go through the titles “Oh, that’ll do” and take lines from them
DB: I got bang into Northern Soul and a lot of old soul ballads about six or seven years ago, that’s all I used to listen to for two or three years, but the titles are great, it’s true. I’ve nicked some too.
PW: “Let me slightly rephrase that”
DB: Not even that!
PW: Lyrics are my least favourite bit. I normally leave them till last and hope the others do them. I only wrote lyrics to two of the songs on the new album, and the odd word here and there.

On Aphex Twin:
PW: He did a remix for us way back in 94, and we went around to his flat in London. It was great because he totally lived up to what you’d expect. You went in and there were keyboards all over the floor with wires hanging out, and circuit benders. I didn’t know what that was at the time, but he’d been doing it, and massive speakers which were ridiculously loud. I did actually think “poor neighbours”. We ended up going to watch the fireworks display with him round the corner.
DB: My mate Jordan, who was the Railway Raver on Rephlex, used to go around to his house and play Pong. Jordan’s lovely but he’s the loudest person ever so he’s the last person you’d want to lose to Pong to because you’d never hear the end of it. Apparently Richard James had had enough of him but couldn’t get out the front door because his flatmate had taken the keys so he climbed out the window to get away from Jordan’s gloating. He’s created his own mythology, with all these things he does or doesn’t do. He said he dreamt Ambient Works II, didn’t he?

On major world events:
PW: There’s normally a Saint Etienne gig or recording when any of these big events happen so we expect the worst. We’ve had a few – The day of the Brexit vote we were in Scotland doing a gig and in the morning we had a really sombre breakfast. We went in thinking it was going to be fine. Most elections it’s happened too.
DB: Remember when there was this craze for doing mash ups? Me and my mate did Pied Piper and Axel F on what turned out to be 9/11. I bunked off work – I was working at Amex at the time and I threw a sicky so we could do it. My mate’s flatmate was going “You’ve got to see what’s going on on telly. It’s insane”. And we were like “We’ve just got to finish this”.

On kids:
PW: Bob’s just had his first kid. Late starter. He’s about a year old I think. Bob’s eighteen months older than me, so he’s 52, 53. He’s going to be knackered, especially if he has any more. Now, me and Sarah are like “now you understand”
BMB: Are your kids at the age where you’re influencing their music tastes yet?
PW: I did used to put one of our own records on in my youngest’ s room because it made her go to sleep but they’re both doing piano lessons and that’s the only thing we make them do. They’re much better than me already. They’re both really good. My older boy doesn’t practice but my daughter will just do it. She’s got an amazing memory. She can’t necessarily read it but she’ll remember whole pieces. It’s lovely to hear as well. My son listens to music though – I don’t know what it is half the time. I know what he likes – the stuff we both like is Daft Punk and stuff with vocoders on.
DB: My youngest loves David Bowie. If we sing along to David Bowie and I sing, he’d be like “Daddy, I’m David Bowie”. And if my eldest sings along he says “Daddy, I’m David Bowie, aren’t I? He can’t be”, so I say “You’re both David Bowie – Have you not seen the Blue Jean video? There’s two of him”. And then today before I came out, we invented a game where we had to say the first line of a Bowie song and we all had to guess what it was. It was brilliant.
PW : I feel like I’ve failed in that respect. My son really likes Coldplay. Since he’s liked them I don’t dislike them as much now.
DB: It’s hard to dislike what your kids like.

On gout:
DB: I get gout sometimes. It came on after I went for a drink with Chris who runs Bleeding Hearts Recordings. Some people say it’s worse than childbirth. I haven’t said that – I don’t think it is, but it’s excruciating. I was drinking lots of fizzy pop at the time, so I just stopped all that and I haven’t had a problem in a year or so. Booze is the trigger. Everyone has different triggers – It can be things like asparagus and mushrooms and bacon. For me I always drank too much coca cola, and then if I went out for a drink, I don’t drink too much, often I would suffer. We did a show in Italy once and I had an attack the day before and I had to be wheeled through the airport, and I had to sit on the stage like I was John Lee Hooker. And it was the only show that my mum had come to so I couldn’t cancel it. The funny thing was that it was in an amphitheatre for Nike, and there was these runners, and the finish line was to the left of the stage where I was with my gout-y foot.
BMB: You did that track / mix for Nike – Different Blades from the Same Pair of Scissors.
DB: Yeah – it was tied in with that so it was around that time. And there was Carl Lewis backstage, and I was just there with my gout. It’s not a nice thing. You can control it by taking better care of yourself. But there’s also a correlation between your Uric acid levels and (this is so pretentious) your creativity. “I’ve got to not get gout but push it as far as I can so I can get my songs out”.
PW: Let’s hope it doesn’t come on when you’re on tour in China.
DB: Gout in China. That could be my autobiography.

Home Counties Fujiya

Home Counties by Saint Etienne and Fujiya & Miyagi by Fujiya & Miyagi are out now.

Paul Murray ‘Party’

Paul Murray is well known around these parts, having made many appearances around town at open mics or playing support for bigger acts, such as Steve Mason. However, he has now released a new EP of songs called ‘Party’, produced by Tim Bidwell (Lucy Rose, John Smith), and it’s up there with some of the best of the singer-songwriter genre.

The songs on the EP exemplify an intelligent human story-telling craft that will hopefully see further success before long.

Opening song ‘Holiday Friends’ is a brilliant piece, about being young, wanting to be free and the compromises people have to make along the way. It’s lines about looking up to artists you meet when young, and their honest response on what it takes “it’s a great life, if you’re prepared not to eat”, sticks in the mind. However, it’s the overall excellence of the writing and playing that stands out, with the metaphor of holiday taking on a deeper resonance.

Some of these songs have been around a while, and Paul’s playing suggests the warmth and familiarity of old friends, ably supported by some excellent strings from Amy Squirrel. ‘Tiny Victories’ is an old song and again exemplifies the beauty of Paul’s honest human songwriting and the pair’s musical synergy. ‘Relax with the Devil’ is another song that dwells on the singer’s own fragility and weaknesses.

Our favourite song ‘Not In Front Of The Family’ exemplifies the humour in Paul’s approach, opening with the lovable embarrassment of a drunken Uncle’s honest appraisal of his thirst for alcohol at his Grandma’s birthday. Of course, the lyric carries on the story and goes deeper, with a great rolling melody, a nagging chorus-line (‘Get a tie!’) and a commentary on the human condition.  I’ve posted a link to this song below,

Final song ‘Underrated Alligator’ continues the high quality, and begins with some of the rawest elements on the EP. It’s line “You’ve been underrated…” isn’t self-referential this time, and we hope it doesn’t continue to relate to Paul’s music.

You can listen to and download all of the songs from ‘Party’ on Soundcloud here. Physical copies of the EP are available from Paul or at his shows.

 

New Brighton Albums

I promised an album post last week, maybe even the week before, but what with the heatwave we’ve had, sitting inside writing blog post hasn’t been top of my agenda. So of the albums I’m about to write about that were out already this post is a little bit more out of out of date, but for those albums that aren’t out yet perhaps it’s a bit more relevant.

St Et Home CountiesThe first couple of albums are by bands not traditionally associated with Brighton but who have a couple of members now resident in the city. Saint Etienne’s Pete Wiggs has been based in Hove for nearly ten years now, but the band won’t ever shake their London associations. Their new album Home Counties references their childhood in the outskirts of London and beyond – Pete and Bob’s formative years were in Reigate and Croydon, and Sarah was born in Chelmsford and spend some of her youth in Windsor. The album’s not about being children though, but instead uses the locations as reference points in passing with songs such as The Angel of Woodhatch, and Whyteleafe, and the widescreen vision of Sweet Arcadia taking in train journeys across all of the home counties (where to bring things back to Brighton, Peacehaven gets a mention). Home Counties is out now on Heavenly Records.

Lucky Soul Hard LinesLucky Soul were also a band who had London associations, Greenwich to be precise. These days though, two of the band – bassist Russell Grooms and guitarist Ivor Sims – are both based in Brighton. There’s a gap of more than seven years between their last album A Coming Of Age, and their new album Hard Lines which comes out on August 11th. They’ve ditched their “Motown Meets Morrissey” sound from the first two albums and have gone disco for the new release, but the sound is still unmistakeably Lucky Soul. So far they’ve only announced one London gig so far (and haven’t even said where that is), but they had a photo of them rehearsing at Brighton Electric in their Instagram feed so we’re keeping our fingers crossed for one a little closer to home.

Gaps As It IsWe’ve given the GAPS album As It Is a few mentions over the last few weeks, as they’ve dropped tracks from it on Soundcloud, and met up with the duo for our most recent Brighton Rocks post. The album came out last weekend and is available through iTunes and the other usual download stores.

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Pog Little TrophiesWe saw a poster for the launch gig for Pog’s Little Trophies album up in a café a few weeks ago and made a note to check it out (although we couldn’t make it – it would have been on 1st June). According to their bandcamp page the album been out since January, so we really missed the boat there. Then we did a bit more digging and read that Little Trophies was Pog’s FIFTEENTH album. So we’ve really, really missed the boat with Pog. We’ll be paying more attention in future

Theo Verney One Small PieceLast week Theo Verney shared Letter Down, the second single from his upcoming album One Small Piece, which comes out on 7th July on Cannibal Hymns. If you pre-order the album now through Theo’s bandcamp page you’ll get immediate downloads of Letter Down and previous single Mind Fire.

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Fij Bickers MillionairesPete Fij & Terry Bickers have also recently shared the second single from their upcoming album. The single’s called Love’s Gonna Get You, and is taken from We Are Millionaires, which comes out on 14th July on Broadcast Recordings. There’s a mini tour at the end of August which stops by at The Rialto on 30th. See you down the front.

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Kemper NortonLast up, news of an album inspired by inspired by the story of a semi-legendary Danish privateer and gang leader who terrorised the north Cornish coast in the late eighteenth century. Obviously. The album from Kemper Norton is called Hungan, which is Cornish for Lullaby and is out on July 17th. If that’s too long to wait, you can pre-order the album now and download two tracks from the record immediately, or you can catch them, at Brighton Noise’s Day VI all dayer at the Green Door Store on 8th July.

 

 

 

New Brighton Music

Back to a normal sized New Music post this week, which doesn’t take me several evenings to write up. We’ve got plans for a new album roundup later this week too, so watch this space.

Our first track this week is Impossible Objects of Desire by Fujiya & Miyagi, taken from their self titled album, or EP3, depending on how much you like vinyl. Listening to the lyrical content of the track, I’d say that they’d probably describe it as being from EP3:

Next up is Normanton Street, who played at the Unitarian church last weekend to launch their new single Supreme. As with a lot of their videos, it’s filmed around and about town, so see how much you can spot while you listen:

Dog in the Snow launch their new single this Saturday at the Green Door Store. It’s called Magic and it’s taken from their upcoming album Consume Me:

 

One of the supports at the Dog in the Snow launch is Mother Me, whose debut single  Make Me Whole was premiered on Gold Flake Paint last week:

 

Lastly (I told you it was much more manageable this week) we have M U M M Y, who have just released an EP entitled Others. M U M M Y have a few gigs coming up, supporting Aquaserge at the Prince Albert on Wednesday 28th June, and also on the same bill as Stephen Evans at the Green Door Store on Sunday 9th July.

 

 

 

New Brighton Music

It’s been a fortnight since we made a new music post, and as usual when it’s been slightly longer, somehow there’s disproportionately more tunes to write about (and that’s not counting the ones we’re missing out because the Spotify / WordPress plugin isn’t working for us these days). So without further ado, our first track this week is another new track from the upcoming GAPS album. If We Remain is the latest track the band have shared from As It Is, which comes out on 22nd June (according to the iTunes preorder page)

Theo Verney has shared Mind Fire, the first single from his debut album Once Small Piece which comes out next month on July 7th. You can pre-order the album now on bandcamp, which gives you a free download of Mind Fire.

Next up is the new single from Warsaw Radio called Still Have You To Hold. They’re playing at The Brunswick on July 7th, and are also currently working on their debut album with producer Jag Jago, who’s worked with The Maccabees and Florence Welch in the past.

Slightly more rough around the edges is the new Black Biro track Off The Shopping List. There’s no Black Biro gigs coming up as far as we know, but members of the band will be playing at the Kinks Under Kover night at the Prince Albert on 18th June.

Last time we mentioned Morning Smoke was back in January of last year. Since then they’ve regrouped and reformed as Method Actress and have just shared their debut single Point of View:

If it was a while since we mentioned the last band, it’s been even longer since we wrote about Grace Carter, who we caught supporting Fear of Men at the Dome Studio Theatre back in 2014. She’s now released her debut single, a beautiful, minimal track called Silence:

Other States have been on our list of bands to check out after The New Faith recommended them in their Brighton Rocks interview. As luck would have it, just yesterday they shared a new track, My Beau, which is the b-side to their new single Make Amends:

Talking of the New Faith, our next band were the support at their single launch recently. We caught the last few minutes of Grymm‘s set where they played their new single Gravity:

Next, an apology to Animal House. The original email from their people got lost amongst the hundreds of other emails that get sent to us, and we didn’t pick up on Coca Cola, until they sent us another asking what we think of it. We’re glad they did:

Now we have the debut single from Johnny KillsLet’s Talk about Me, just under three minutes of trashy rock’n’roll:

Sunday is a funny old day to release a single, but that’s what Somebody’s Daughter are doing with their new single Pretty Game. Handily though it does tie in perfectly with the launch gig, which takes place at Latest Music Bar:

On the subject of bands with launch gigs on the day their record comes out, now’s the time to mention the debut Common Tongues album Divisions, out on 16th June with a launch gig at The Haunt. Here’s Pioneer, which came out as a single last month:

Horace sent over a taster of his  In The Garden EP before it was public, which we liked very much. Now it’s up for everyone to listen to it would be rude of us not to include it in one of our new music posts:

Our last track this week is by BUNKR, a Lost Idol spin off  project. A 12″ has come out on Love On The Rocks records, and this is one of the tracks from it – Juno’s Revenge:

 

New Brighton Music

I had a thought this week that I should make all my new music posts on the same day of the week, and then they’d be New Music Mondays or something like that, but then I realised I could never be so organised as to organise my week like that, so we’re stuck with New Brighton Music as the post name, and they’ll come out as I manage to get the time in front of my computer. Anyway, our first track this week is from Dog in the Snow, a song called Magic taken from their upcoming album Consume Me due later this year:

A few years after their first collaboration, Pete Fij and Terry Bickers have returned with some new material. There’s an utterly gorgeous single – Let’s Get Lost Together – all chiming guitars, beautiful harmonies and a lovely world weariness, that they describe as a Bromance song. It’s taken from an album called We Are All Millionaires which comes out on July 14th which we’ll definitely be writing more about in time.

Alyss‘ new EP Alchemy came out earlier this month and is packed with some of the best bass and beats we’ve heard in a while. You can check out the lead single Pyramid from it here:

At completely the other end of the musical spectrum are new Brighton band LOM. Accompanied by some beautiful animation, There is a Place is taken from the band’s Kingdom EP which is out now.

White Room were one of a number of bands whose people got in touch to ask if we’d be catching up with them at the Great Escape. We do our best, but unfortunately we didn’t make it to their gig, but to make up for it, here’s their new single Take Me Away:

We did make it up to the Black Dove to see Bloom though. As well playing three shows at the Great Escape, they’ve also put up a video for their new single Such a Shame, and finished posting all of the tracks for their Letting Go charity remix album too.

I’m not sure about their name, and I’m even less sure about their graphics, but Tidal Rave‘s new EP Neon Pants Party is actually a pretty good synth pop record. I say “record”, but apparently it’s been released on a USB stick inside a UV wristband that you can wear out raving. Obviously.