Gigs we’ve spotted

Right now, with the evenings going sub-zero it might not seem too appealing to get off the sofa and into town for some live music. We’ve seen a few upcoming gigs which will hopefully change your mind though, starting off with a couple from newly refurbished venues:

10931282_934707609896845_3118508573256408749_nYou might have noticed that right now The Hope is covered with scaffolding and has been closed for a few weeks. on 12th February it reopens as The Hope & Ruin, And Riots Not Diets are hosting their opening party, with Shopping, The Soft Walls and Keel Her setting the bar for what’s to come.

Another venue which has just had a facelift is The Martha Gunn on Upper Lewes Road. Not traditionally known for gigs, it seems that’s to change in their newly reincarnated form. This Saturday (7th February), Becky Becky headline, supported by a stripped down Fiction Aisle, for a free gig put on by the Flash Bang Band affiliated F=KX.

10945724_10155148307895534_4596353916626696870_oFiction Aisle are also support for The Academy of The Sun‘s gig at The Old Market on 19th February. Nick Hudson’s most ambitious project to date have played a few low key gigs so far, but Nick has a history of turning his bigger gigs into events not to be missed.

Fiction Aisle aren’t on the bill for the welcome return of The Bleeding Hearts Club, but it’s surely only a matter of time since Bleeding Hearts put out Tom White’s solo Yalla album. The Bleeding Hearts Club has left it’s old home of the Prince Albert and has relocated to a new home at The Rialto Theatre on Dyke Road, with Gary Goodman, The Hornblower Brothers, Tandy Hard and Mudlow playing on 16th February. After this month, they’ll be back every second monday of the month for the rest of the year.

Another regular night which is making a return soon is The Harvest Sessions, which are restarting on 4th March at The Komedia, coming back with a bang with Luke Sital-Singh, Jacko Hooper and The Standard Lamps.

The following night Della Lupa launches her new single Storm of Swallows at One Church. Not content with just playing a gig, the evening also comprises an art exhibition by Beth Steddon who provided the artwork for the single, a dance performance from the dancers who choreographed the video, and support from Ellie Ford, Summa, and Kwil.

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Dark Horses live at the Hope

You’ll have read our interview with Ali Tollervey last weekend and know we like this band, so it’s no surprise we were at the Hope for Dark Horses‘ stellar show to promote Ali’s exhibition and their new album ‘Hail Lucid State’.

For those not in the know, Dark Horses produce gritty sexy rock music, somewhere in-between kraut rock and gothic new wave, with lead singer Lisa Elle giving out vibes of Patti Smith and Jim Morrison.  Sunday night was special, with the band on top form playing a bundle of songs from their two albums, kicking off with the latest single Saturn Returns and ending with a dark moody cover of the Doors’ Hello, I love you, in amongst an array of visuals and light effects.

Brighton Music Blog took a double pack of camera folk to capture the spirit. If you head to the Hope, downstairs  you can see Ali Tollervey’s photography of the band, but for now you have these.

Photo by Rob Orchard

Photo by Rob Orchard

Photo by Rob Orchard

Photo by Rob Orchard

Photo by Rob Orchard

Photo by Rob Orchard

Photo by Rob Orchard

Photo by Rob Orchard

Photo by Rob Orchard

Photo by Rob Orchard

Photo by Rob Orchard

Photo by Rob Orchard

Photo by Jon Southcoasting

Photo by Jon Southcoasting

Photo by Jon Southcoasting

Photo by Jon Southcoasting

Photo by Jon Southcoasting

Photo by Jon Southcoasting

Photo by Jon Southcoasting

Photo by Jon Southcoasting

Photo by Jon Southcoasting

Photo by Jon Southcoasting

Brighton Photo Fringe – Interview with Ali Tollervey of Dark Horses

Here at Brighton Music Blog we love a festival. The festival we’re writing about today though isn’t actually a music festival but a photography festival. Throughout October Brighton Photo Biennial and Brighton Photo Fringe have events all over town. The event within the festival we’re writing about is music related however – One of the exhibitions that forms part of Brighton Photo Fringe is being held at the Hope and showcases the collaborative photography between Dark Horses and Ali Tollervey, who works so closely with the band that he’s considered a member. Tonight there’s the private view for the exhibition and a Dark Horses gig too, so we sent over a few questions to find out a bit more about his work with the band:

Brighton Music Blog : How did you end up being Dark Horses photographer?

Ali Tollervey : I was already friends with Lisa & had photographed her performing before the band that Dark Horses would become had taken shape. I was actually staying at Lisa’s house for a brief period around the time that Dark Horses were evolving, they were recently back from early recording sessions at the Key Club Studios in Michigan with Richard Fearless. New members were joining. Lisa had played me the recordings from the states, I was excited by the project & believed in the music. It seemed very natural to work together & developed organically. After hearing a demo Kasabian offered them tour support. Things all moved very quickly, within a few short weeks we were on stage at Brixton & Wembley.

BMB : Were you considered a member from the beginning?

TV : Again it’s something that evolved .There was always the idea of collaboration, a collective approach, trying to create an energy, something more than just music. There was visual feedback as counterpoint to the sound..they fed into each other..As I was on board from the start we grew together. It was immersive. I was pretty much at every show / tour for the first couple years. We were a family or better a gang. It felt like we were all working together, my role just happened to be visual. It’s more usual for photographers to be outsiders, quickly meeting a band for a press shot or maybe joining them for part of a tour`. This was different, we’d be lugging equipment together, on stage together, if necessary sharing beds together.. Aside from the photography I was involved with other areas relating to the band.

hells-angels-irving-pennBMB : What do you remember of the first proper shoot you did with them?

TV : It was a late evening group shot at Lisa’s home which became our ‘clubhouse’. They were taken in front of a back wall which happens to be adorned with a giant floor to ceiling black & white print by Irving Penn of the Hell’s Angels – a group portrait in itself. So there were twice the sets of eyes staring back at me. (On a side note we realised afterwards that every male member of the Hell’s Angels in the Penn backdrop bore a striking resemblance to our guitarist Bobby Waterson, the only band member unable to make the shoot)

BMB : When you’re shooting Dark Horses, how much input do they have and how much is about your vision for the band?

TV : Everybody involved with Dark Horses has their own vision they bring but together it works.. Though it’s a collaboration, we all trust each others individual strengths & input. There’s a dialogue but we have our own areas we work in. So I have freedom… Pierre Angélique the filmmaker behind the videos has played a very significant role also.

BMB : Your work with the band covers reportage shots, promo shoots and live shots, have you got any favourite local locations or venues to shoot them?

TV : I’d say it’s the reportage I enjoy the most… I don’t have favourite locations & don’t tend to shoot that much locally… Anywhere can be good.. There was a particularly hot & atmospheric derelict building we used as a rehearsal space in Malta with an abandoned wedding dress floating in a heavy old wardrobe.. a beautiful forest we explored in Switzerland.. We did a show with Sigur Ros in an 8000 seater outdoor amphitheatre in Perth which was an incredible setting, particularly memorable for me as I’d broken my toes earlier that day so fighting my way through the crowd from the stage at the bottom of the valley to the very top for a wide shot was pretty scary. The best however shots could equally come from a Holiday Inn car park.

BMB : You’ve traveled quite a bit with Dark Horses, occasionally taking an exhibition of your photos with you. Are there any tales you can share, or does what happen on tour stay on tour?

TV : It does to an extent stay on tour. it’s an amazing thing to do but mostly not that glamorous. Some of the best after parties happen in the back of the van.The best part is the time spent together, experiences shared & the people you meet along the way. In Malta (with Kinemastik & Bare Bones) we took over an entire subway underpass as an exhibition space, pasting giant prints directly to the walls, we had a launch party down there too with a bar & music. Rather than being taken down afterwards the prints stayed up long after we’d left slowly disintegrating over time. We’ve spent quite a bit of time with the Dandy Warhol’s & that’s always good. We played an impromptu game of Boule with Pete Doherty in a field in France once. I can’t remember who won.

Bjork by Ali Tollervey

Bjork by Ali Tollervey

BMB : Is your music photography just limited to Dark Horses, or have you shot other bands?

TV : I’m not solely a music photographer but I’ve always been involved with music in one way or another, I ran a record shop, promoted shows for several years, worked on music videos etc so I have photographed many bands in different contexts.. My first proper official live show where I had a photo pass was Bjork, I had a very basic old film camera & all the old pros in the photo pit must have thought I was a joke. My first real portrait session was with David Axelrod, I got to spend an hour with him which was amazing. Like a lot photographers I used to document the scenes going on around me. I realise I don’t go to so many gigs with my camera anymore though, I think I just want to enjoy the show.

BMB : Finally, will you be shooting the band at their gig on 12th October?

TV : I haven’t decided yet, it will be hard not to but they’ve worked out an amazing set for this one off show so I may wish to simply be a spectator.

Horse Latitudes, an exhibition of Ali Tollervey’s photos of Dark Horses is on at The Hope now and runs until the 2nd November, with Dark Horses playing live tonight.

Dark Horses gig

Gigs of the Week

There’s an excellent week of gigs ahead in Brighton with some of the best local bands gracing some of our stages, and we wouldn’t be doing our job if we didn’t give you a heads up about them.

Tomorrow (Tuesday) Cate Ferris launches her new EP at Latest Music Bar. Disappear was crowdfunded (with pledgers already having received their downloads), and now the EP is getting a full release. Support comes from Moughrabi and Bird.

Dog in the Snow’s new single Africa is out today, but the launch party is at the Green Door Store on Wednesday. Also on the bill are Brighton Music Blog favourites Momotaro and Winston & Goldstein.

Fear of Men kick off their first headline tour this week with a hometown gig at The Hope on Thursday. To mark they event, the band have put up a new cover onto Soundcloud, of Ty Segall’s Sleeper. Get there early and you can also catch The Hundredth Anniversary who are opening the evening’s proceedings.

Friday night is the next Spectrum event, run as a partnership between Brighton Dome and Resident. This month’s night is headlined by Gazelle Twin, whose new album Unflesh is released today. The whole night is being billed as an Anti Ghost Moon Ray showcase and Gazelle twin is being joined by her labelmates Bernholz and Great Pagans.

Finally, on Saturday Lutine play a show at St Laurence Church in Falmer village. Lutine’s debut album White Flowers was recorded at the church and is released on Monday 29th September. Support comes from Bela Emerson.

Weekend Gig Picks – Moulettes, Tigercub, Crayola Lectern, Blood Red Shoes, Phantom Runners, Spit Shake Sisters, Ellie Ford, Milk & Biscuits

It’s been a while since we made a Weekend Gig Picks post, but with as many great gigs as Brighton has this weekend, we couldn’t resist.

moulettesTomorrow night we’ll be down at The Haunt where Moulettes play a hometown gig in advance of their upcoming album Constellations. Also on thursday, at Bermuda Triangle, Tigercub are launching their new single Blue Blood (which comes out on limited translucent blue 7″ on 5th May). And as if that wasn’t enough choice, Brighton Music Blog favourite Crayola Lectern is playing at the Verdict, on the bill with Cardiacs’ William D Drake.

hopturbulencephantom-27955On Friday night we’re off to the Concorde 2 for Blood Red Shoes, currently on tour around the UK (where Wytches joined them on a few dates, but unfortunately won’t be at the Brighton gig). Up at The Hope, Phantom Runners are holding their album launch, supported by Glossy Coat and Young Night. It’s also this month’s Les Enfants Terribles at the Blind Tiger headlined by Spit Shake Sisters. And then over at the Red Roaster café Hidden Trail Records are hosting a night showcasing their first proper signing Ellie Ford.

We’re also out on Sunday night too, for Milk and Biscuits‘ gig at the Blind Tiger where Prince Vaseline and Cuddly Shark support.

 

 

Brighton Unsigned with Yourgardenday, Stark and Mortie Pockett

 

Brighton Unsigned launched their latest issue with a gig at the Hope featuring their cover stars yourgardenday, and three other up-and-coming acts. Another excellent night’s entertainment, emphasising the vast musical talent that exists in Brighton.

First up was a young guy called Mortie Pockett, who hails from Storrington but is now a local town player. His sound felt like a throwback to Elvis in his Sun Sessions period, strong rhythmic strumming and a twang-infused vocal style over some nice rocking tunes.

Mortie Pockett

 

 

 

 

 

 

Next up were the startlingly youthful looking but exceptionally talented Stark, with a harder powerful sound that took us out of 1950s rockabilly into a late 60s bluesy heavy rock vibe, akin to Led Zeppelin. All three members of Stark were incredibly impressive, and the sound whilst rocking was also soulful and full of great tunes. They ended their set with a stunning and original version of Dylan’s Crash on the Levee. There’s an EP being launched at the Prince Albert on 4th March which comes highly recommended.

Stark Stark

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Then came the cover stars yourgardenday with their first full band set of the year, following last year’s successful launch of the Flat Stream EP. Another favourite of this blog, Robin Coward has a bunch of really strong songs which are highly memorable and stand out form the crowd. Robin can be heard every week at one of the open mic spots he runs around town, but in a full band setting songs like the opener Something in the Music, sons of a Gun and the beautiful closer Spring is Springing can be heard as they were intended. Pop classics every one.

Robin Coward (YourGardenDay)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

YourGardenDay YourGardenDay

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Final band Unsung Lilly are out-of-towners, reflecting Brighton Unsigned magazine’s desire to spread a little more widely and cover more of the talent across the south east. They’re a big loud band with a powerful pop sound and oodles of talent.

Unsung Lilly (Sera and Frankie)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Photographs and word by Jon Southcoasting

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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.