Fear of Men at the Prince Albert

Last night, Fear of Men played a hometown gig at the Prince Albert in over a year. The Guardian loved it and gave it four stars. Since the last time we saw them the band have grown musically – the new material no longer sits into the standard guitar-guitar-bass-drums indie four piece setup, with Jess putting down her guitar for most of the performance, the rotating bassist chair (currently filled by Dog in the Snow’s Helen Ganya Brown) now being a bassist and keyboard player and backing vocalist and half of Michael Miles drum kit has been replaced with electronic pads. The band are as thrilling to see live as ever – Jess Weiss is an ever more compelling front person, and the rest of the band are tighter than they’ve ever been. Fear of Men deserve to be playing much bigger venues and it was a rare treat to seem them playing somewhere as intimate as the Prince Albert. Make sure you don’t miss them next time.

Here’s our pics from last night. Click through the gallery to view large:

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Weekend Gig Picks – Gaps and Fear of Men

Once upon a time, when we used  to be far more prolific on the blog we used to write a weekly gig picks column. Every now and then we revive it when we feel it’s worthwhile, and this weekend two of our favourite bands are playing at the Prince Albert on different nights, so here we are.

Tomorrow (or thursday, if you’re not reading this the day it was posted) Love Thy Neighbour are putting on GAPS supported by Chelou and Native Ray. Their new EP of remixes of A World Away came out last Friday, and the vinyl edition of their album In, Around The Moments comes out this Friday, so they’ve got lots to celebrate.

Then on Sunday it’s Fear of Men‘s turn, courtesy of Melting Vinyl and Teen Creeps. They’re supported by Girl Ray and Tiger Lion. Their new LP Fall Forever comes out on 3rd of June and they’ve just shared the video for Island, the first taste of the new material. By our calculations, they haven’t played a hometown gig in over eighteen months but we bet it’ll be worth the wait.

 

GAPS at the Prince Albert photo gallery

Last night we braved the cold to head out to the Prince Albert where GAPS played a hometown gig following their recent mini tour. Since the last time we saw them they’ve gained some rather lovely visuals which meant they were standing in the dark – that we got any photos of the band was something of a miracle. They’ve also written an awful lot of new material too which has broadened their sound while still operating within the bands existing premise of folk + electronica, now taking in breakbeats and some trouser shaking bass. Support came folk troubadour Lloyd Williams who did some very clever things with a guitar, a banjo and a floor mounted accordion. Here’s our pics, click to view large:

next week : Bootleg Festival at the Prince Albert

When I first started buying records, a bootleg was something very different from what it is now. Bootlegs used to be live recordings of gigs – if you were very lucky they’d be direct from the sound desk, but more often than not they’d be taped by someone in the crowd so you’d end up with muffled sound and the audience singing along. Next week the Prince Albert and Brightelmstone Promotions are putting on a four night event called The Bootleg Festival, less about mash ups, and more about the live recordings – every night is getting recorded with ticket holders getting a download of one song from each act and full recordings going on sale. And since it’s being put on with the full cooperation of the Prince Albert, recordings from the sound desk are guaranteed! There’s some great Brighton bands playing with Clowns, Crayola Lectern, Flash Bang Band and Thieves by the Code already on the line ups with more bands yet to be announced. Advance tickets can be bought online here.

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Clowns at the Prince Albert

On Saturday night we headed down to the Prince Albert to see Clowns – one of Brighton’s best live bands, but who we hadn’t seen in over a year. In that time they’ve been lying low and finishing off their long awaited album. Hopefully we’ll be able to give you more details of that very soon indeed, but until there here’s what our camera saw:

(click on the pics to view large)

Gigs of the week

If you’re brave enough to leave the house without fear of being blown away or drowned, here’s our gig picks for this week:

BBTonight two local acts are supporting Basia Bulat at The Hope. You can catch Bella Spinks and Heliopause on Queens Road from 8pm. Meanwhile Audiobeach Studios celebrate their fourth birthday with a showcase at Sticky Mike’s with sets from BirdEatsBaby, Nylon Sky, Echo & the Beats and Departure from Normal.

Friday Night is Valentines day, and The Valentines are playing their last ever gig at the Prince Albert, with support from Fire Eyes and Dirt Royal. You can also catch Normanton Street over at the Green Door Store.

 

derriereOur pick for Saturday night is also two local acts supporting a touring band – Ez Stone and Ellie Ford are on the bill with Lily & Madeleine at Sticky Mike’s. We also like the look of Derriere who are playing at the Blind Tiger.

IYES at the Prince Albert / The New Union at the Blind Tiger live gallery

Last night The New Union supported Let’s Buy Happiness at the Blind Tiger and IYES played their first headline show at the Prince Albert. We were torn – we’re fans of both bands – which should we go to? And then we figured that since The New Union were supporting and IYES were headlining, we should be able to make it to both.

When we first heard about the New Union gig, we read that they would be on at 8.15. On the day, we read on Facebook that it would be 8.30. We turned up at the gig to see set times that said 8.45, but the support act who was on before them didn’t get onstage until 8.50. In the end The New Union started just after 9.30, so we only caught a few of their songs before we headed to the Prince Albert. But those few songs sounded fantastic. Every time the New Union head into the studio, they come out sounding even better, taking everything they’ve learned and improving their live sound with it, and just recently they’ve been recording at Metway Studios with Matthew Twaites (of Electric Soft Parade, Milk & Biscuits, etc).

The normal career path for a new band is first to get support slots with other local bands, then headline your own small gigs, then get supports with bigger touring bands that visit. It’s testament to the strength of IYES demos that they managed to skip the first two stages, with all their gigs so far playing before more established national acts. As sods law would have it, the IYES gig was running late too, but that meant we got to catch Londoners Rivieras from the back of a packed room. When they were done, we took the opportunity to get to the front so we could make up for all of the photos that we didn’t take at the New Union gig. IYES were on top form, showcasing the demos that the crowd was familiar with as well as a brace of new tracks including the first play of their upcoming single Infinity.

Click pics to view large: