Brighton Music Blog Great Escape / Alt Escape 2017 preview

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It’s almost that time again – the highlight in the Brighton musical calendar, when anywhere you can fit in a PA becomes venue for a few days. Yes, this coming weekend is The Great Escape Festival. We haven’t finalised our plans, but we’re probably going to end up seeing more Alt Escape stuff than proper Great Escape stuff, because that’s where the bulk of the local bands are playing. If you haven’t got yourself a ticket yet then you can get into all the Alt Escape stuff without one anyway.

If you want to start really early then there are actually a couple of shows on Wednesday night, our pick of which is the Fiddlers Elbow where you can see the likes of Fable and Porshyne.

Things really kick off on Thursday though. We’ll probably spending a lot most of the day at Alive Gym on Castle Street – not to work out, but to enjoy the Small Pond / Republic of Music all dayer which has an ace line up – Pussy Liquor, The Hundredth Anniversary, Our Girl and Dream Wife are all on our list. There are also three unannounced acts, which is often Great Escape code for secret gigs by much bigger bands. We’ll also be spending some time up at the Black Dove, which has a line curated by Octopuses that includes Bloom, Fukushima Dolphin, Tom White, Speak Galactic and Frost. In terms of non Brighton bands, we like the look of Anteros at 2pm at Bleach and Gurr who are playing at 3.30pm at Sticky Mikes and also at 9.15pm at Green Door Store. Liberty Music PR’s GRL PWR showcase at Hotel Pelirocco has a mix of tourists and Brighton bands, including Ex-Phanton Runner Adal who’s joined by Michelle O Faith, who are on at 8pm. Also representing Brighton on the main line up are Yonaka (8.30, Patterns), Jacko Hooper (9.15, Jubilee Square) and Fickle Friends (11.15pm, East Wing).

Possibly the strangest gig of the weekend is early afternoon on Friday when Nick Heyward from Haircut 100 (ask your mum) plays at the Black Lion. What we’re most looking forward to though is the Shipwright’s Yard Sessions (also put on by Republic of Music, who seem to be pushing all our buttons at this year’s festival). The whole bill look pretty good, but we’re most excited by The Magic Gang at 4.55pm and Rose Elinor Dougall at 5.35pm. It’s an Alt Escape gig, but you need to register for a ticket so don’t miss out. Elsewhere Porridge Radio are playing at the Hope & Ruin at 6.30pm, Thyla are at the Mucky Duck at 8.30pm, Dog in the Snow play at the Windmill at 10.30pm, and Chris Anderson plays in all three of his Crayola Lectern, La Momo and Zofff guises at the Black Dove over the course of the day.

Saturday daytime is all about Love Thy Neighbour’s Alt Escape gig downstairs at The Hope & Ruin for us. From 2.30pm there’s a run of Kub followed by Our Girl followed by TEEFF which you’ll be hard pressed to beat. Saturday night things get really busy at the festival so your best bet to avoid the queues is to get into a venue early and stay there. There are two great Brighton heavy line ups which we’ll be torn between – Over at the Old Market,  Blood Red Shoes headline with Tigercub and Marthgunn lower down the bill. Alternatively at Sticky Mike’s Magic Gang, Dream Wife, Abattoir Blues and Our Girl are all on the bill at Cannibal Hymns showcase. Also on our list (which has clashes everywhere) are LOM at the Prince Albert at 12.50pm, Bloom at Café Plenty at 1pm, Fable at Hotel Pelirocco at 2pm, Kudu Blue at 2.30pm upstairs at the Hope & Ruin, and The Big Moon at 11pm at Horatios. Saturday night is also Bleach’s last day ever. After the Great Escape festival they’re shutting their doors and closing the venue. Who knows what’ll happen to it – whether it’ll be a function room for the Hare & Hounds, or whether they’ll build it into more pub to be used on a daily basis, or hopefully it’ll come back as a new venue before long – but if you have fond memories of the place Saturday will be your last chance to say goodbye.

New Brighton Music

Here’s this week’s new music roundup, and we’ve got LOADS to write about. First up is the new one from Sea Bed, who show that they can pen pop songs as well as dance tracks with Pretender. The band head out on tour with Clock Opera next week, playing at The Hope & Ruin on 3rd March.

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Great Escape / Alternative Escape Preview

Stacked_plain_colour_Twitter_400x400In case you hadn’t realised, this weekend is The Great Escape festival, probably the most important musical event in the local calendar. There’s a few Brighton bands tucked in the main festival, but the bulk of the homegrown talent features in the line-up of the Alternative Escape – a sister festival that runs side by side where for most events you won’t need a wrist band, or have to shell out any money to see some fantastic live acts. There are literally hundreds of bands playing over dozens of events so to help guide you through the weekend here’s our pick of some of the BN postcode-based performers you can catch.

The fun begins on Wednesday night with Late Night Lingerie vs The Great Escape at Sticky Mike’s Frog Bar, where can catch the first of Demob Happy‘s many sets of the festival as well as Skirts last ever gig. Inspired Artists Agency who represent quite a few Brighton bands are taking over Latest Music Bar on Thursday, and we’re hoping to pop in for The Slytones at 2.55pm and Moulettes who play at 6.30pm. There are 20 bands over 28 sets on at The Mesmerist on thursday, on the stages put together by Liberty Music PR, amongst others. If we had to pick one it would be Phantom Runners who are on at 9.40pm. Bleach is being taken over by Strong Island Recordings and Pic & Vinyl on thursday, where Brighton Music Blog favourites Curxes take to the stage at 5.40pm. Over at London Road’s newest cafe Presuming Ed, Cate Ferris tops their line up. Miamigo play their debut show at Patterns (formerly Audio) at 6.45pm.

Brightonsfinest are in charge at Latest on Friday, and they’ve got a cracking line up. You could pop in at any time and see a great local band, but we’ll be popping in for GAPS at 2.45pm and Spit Shake Sisters at 7.45pm. The Mesmerist also has a pretty good line up, with Black Honey and Oslo Parks catching our eye. One of Brighton’s most written about bands at the moment are The Magic Gang, and they head up the DIY / Echochamp showcase at Bleach, playing at 10pm.

Moving on to Saturday, Earworm events and Northbrook college are hosting proceedings at Bar Rogue where we’re tipping Flash Bang Band at 6pm and newcomers Bloom at 6.50pm. The Fiddlers Elbow are having a street party, which is a great idea since I couldn’t get in to see the bands I wanted to last year. If I were you, I’d be down there for Yumi & The Weather at 4pm and Tigercub at 5pm. Marwoods Cafe are hosting some more gentle gigs over Friday and Saturday, but expect things to get a bit more riotous when Black Rooster Black Shag take to the stage at 8.10pm on Saturday night. Tyrannosaurus Dead play their last ever gig in Brighton at Fitzherbert’s a part of Cupboard Music’s line up. They’re only playing one more gig after that, and that’s in London, so expect it to be rammed. Hotel Pelirocco also have an all Brighton line-up – Time for T headline at 10pm, but get down there for 3pm to catch grasshopper who are fantastic. Bleeding Hearts are putting on a gig on Saturday afternoon at the Rialto theatre, which will be the first opportunity to buy headliner Clowwns debut album. It’s not an official Great Escape gig, but it would be churlish not to give them a shoutout. Finally, one of the very last gigs of the weekend is KLDSCP’s party at Sticky Mike’s which doesn’t even kick off until 1am. Mount Bank, who’ve put out one of favourite EPs of the year so far are playing, so hopefully we’ll still be standing by the time they’re on.