Hey! Manchester promotes gigs by folk, Americana and experimental bands from around the world in Manchester, England. Read more here, see below for our latest shows, check out our previous shows, contact us, or join our mailing list, above.

Upcoming shows: Douga... The Handsome Family... The BellRays... Karl Blau... Vinny Peculiar... Spinning Coin... A Bingo Records showcase... Mt. Wolf... Elle Mary & The Bad Men... Sweet Baboo... Josienne Clarke & Ben Walker... The Blow... South Island Son... Brooke Sharkey... The Sheepdogs... Lilly Hiatt... Josh Rouse... Honeyfeet... KAZE... Slug... Pinkshinyultrablast... Wreckless Eric... Simone Felice... Barrence Whitfield and The Savages... Pete Astor... I’m With Her... Chad Valley... The Breath... Aidan Moffat & RM Hubbert... GospelbeacH... Charles Watson... Curse of Lono... Born Ruffians...

When: 7.30pm on Friday 23 February 2018
Where: The Castle Hotel, 66 Oldham Street, Manchester M4 1LE

We’re delighted to be working with Douga again – with special guests Chew Magna plus Sam McLoughlin and David Chatton Barker!

Douga are a band who defy description. The name stems from a childhood nickname. This starting point informs the exploration, expression and freedom they set out to communicate within their music. A heart beat of sorts. They combine influences ranging from folk to 70s German experimentalists, electronic leanings and classic songwriting, creating a sound that’s uniquely their own. Their music has been featured on BBC 6 Music and Radio 3, and they have recently played dates supporting Sweet Baboo on tour.

Their latest album, Hidden Tapes and the Golden Tide, was released in December, and critics have praised it for its scope and ambition. Expect vocal harmonies, guitars, beats, drones and bleeps.

‘Combining elements of Americana, psychedelia and an unmistakable tinge of Manchester grit, Douga go to great lengths to get their sound just right’ – For Folk’s Sake

‘Throughout Hidden Tapes & the Golden Tide Douga consistently reinvent themselves’ – God is in the TV

‘Their imaginative arrangements and interesting bits of instrumentation maintain interest throughout. Good stuff’ – The Crack

Special guests are Chew Magna – featuring members of Songs for Walter, Young British Artists and Butcher the Bar. Their debut single, Learning How To Swim, was released in September 2017.

Opening the show are Sam McLoughlin and David Chatton Barker, who perform as an improvised propulsive duo, exploring rural conjurations and shamanic invocations using an arsenal of handmade percussion and stringed instruments, dictaphones, feedback and projections. Away from the duo, Sam released Flaming Liar as Samandtheplants in May last year, while David is co-founder of the Folklore Tapes label.

Buy tickets now. Tickets are available from the bar (no booking fee), Piccadilly Records, Vinyl Exchange, WeGotTickets.comTicketline.co.uk and on 0871 220 0260.

Attend on: Facebook


All shows are 18+ unless otherwise stated.
Designed by ikram_zidane

When: 7pm on Sunday 4 March 2018
Where: Academy 3, Oxford Road, Manchester M13 9PR

We’re delighted to be welcoming The Handsome Family back to Manchester!

Rennie Sparks disappeared one afternoon while waiting for a flight at O’Hare. A middle-aged businessman, McDonald’s bag in one hand, rolling-bag handle in the other – walked up to Rennie and, without pause, turned and sat down on her lap. A second later his French fries and rolling bag were on the floor and he was sputtering apologies, insisting he’d seen an empty chair.

Rennie often has trouble with automatic faucets ignoring her waving hands, but this unexpected airport invisibility was in 2014, the year the TV show True Detective used her song Far From Any Road as its opening theme. This was the year The Handsome Family (aka husband and wife Brett and Rennie Sparks) became visible to millions. Even as she was getting sat on by strangers, Youtube counts for The Handsome Family’s ‘hit’ song climbed from two million to ten million, twenty million and more. The song was in the top 10 in US and UK Spotify charts and spent months in iTunes top 100 in countries as far-flung as Vietnam, South Africa and the Ukraine.

Millions of viewers ‘broke the internet’ watching the final episode of True Detective S1, but Rennie and Brett watched in their little house in Albuquerque, NM, feeling oddly alone. The Handsome Family were now known around the globe for a song they’d written 12 years earlier about fire ants and desert plants, a song now linked forever to a show about cops in a psychic swamp. The Sparks were arguably famous now, but at the same time unknown. They were not their famous song nor was their famous song written for the show that made it famous. All these disconnections, though, are fine when you’re a writer of songs.

For almost as long as they’ve been married (26 years) Brett and Rennie have written songs together (Brett, music; Rennie, words). Their finished work is never fully one or the other’s, but lives in unseen space between them. William Burroughs claimed he walked busy streets without being seen, simply by seeing everyone else first. This is similar to the Sparks’ approach to songwriting and why Rennie embraces her power to vanish. You have to willingly disappear in order to write lyrics for someone else’s voice, or to write music for someone else’s words. Invisible songwriters are happiest when their songs outshine them, leaving their creators unseen in the dust.

The Sparks have released 10 albums since 1995’s Odessa. Their songs have been covered by countless Youtubers and well-known artists like Jeff Tweedy, Amanda Palmer, Cerys Matthews, Christy Moore and Andrew Bird (who released an entire record of HF covers). Guns ‘N’ Roses used Far From Any Road as stage entrance music for a South American tour, and both Bruce Springsteen and Ringo Starr are fans. Decades into their careers, after winning the TV theme-show jackpot – the Sparks still find their greatest reward in disappearing into new songs.

And so in the strange light of 2014 they began again to write. 2016 brought the release of Unseen – 10 songs by a couple both world-famous and happily invisible. Each song on the record has a guiding colour – gold, silver, green, red, white. Rennie is also a painter known for her vivid and surprising use of colour, and she finds herself painting even when her brushes are made of words. The stories of Unseen are mostly inspired by real events – Gold began when a bunch of twenty-dollar bills blew in Brett’s face in a parking-lot dust storm. Gentlemen is a tribute to William Crookes who built the first vacuum tube in 1875, hoping to detect spirits from unseen dimensions. And Tiny Tina – Rennie still hasn’t seen that little horse.

Unseen is about the light that emanates from things we can’t see – behind The Red Door, in the empty hands of blackjack losers (The Silver Light), and amidst desert bones bleaching in the sun (King of Dust).

Since 2001 Brett has made their albums in a converted garage at the back of their house. He recorded Unseen on a Mac and played most of the parts at night, with only hawk moths listening. There were guest musicians – David Gutierrez: mandolin on Tiny Tina and dobro on The Silver Light. Alex MacMahon: guitar on The Silver Light, baritone guitar and pedal steel on Gold. Jason Toth: drums throughout (except Green Willow Valley). Rennie wrote all the lyrics. She sang and played banjo and autoharp, but didn’t bother to write down on which songs.

The Sparks’ music is steeped in the western gothic of New Mexico life. The unseen is powerful here. Nothing rusts, but entire oceans have disappeared. Ski masks mean robberies, but in the slow dive of the sun, enormous bugs awaken in thorny yards and unseen sirens and coyotes cry out to the purple sky. Just about anywhere you stand there’s been some blood drawn.

‘Unseen is The Handsome Family’s masterpiece’ – MOJO

Tour support comes from Drunken Prayer. Drunken Prayer is Morgan Geer’s longest running project to date. Under this alias he has released four LPs, a handful of singles, a live EP and toured the world. On Drunken Prayer’s last effort, The Devil and The Blues (Fluff and Gravy Records), Geer leads another journey through America’s weird musical heritage. This record is rowdier than previous efforts due in large part to the rhythm section of Lance Wille and David Wayne Gay (Reigning Sound, Freakwater). Adding to the drag-strip atmosphere, Dallas Good of The Sadies makes a cameo on the opening track appropriately named, Hell Raiser. The lyrics are as sweet as they are damning, offering a window into the mind of Morgan Geer. The view that it affords is at once unsettling and familiar. Morgan is also the current guitar player for iconic alt-country goths, Freakwater.

Tickets are available from Seetickets.comTicketline.co.uk and on 0871 220 0260.

Attend on: Facebook


All shows are 18+ unless otherwise stated.
Designed by ikram_zidane

When: 7pm on Friday 9 March 2018
Where: Soup Kitchen, 31-33 Spear Street, Manchester M1 1DF

We’re delighted to be working with The BellRays for the first time!

Punk. Funk. Rock. Soul. The main ingredients in a potent witch’s brew that The BellRays have been mixing for a long time now. Returning with their first full new album since the release of Black Lightning in 2010, Punk Funk Rock Soul Volume Two follows the release of Volume One, the four-track taster EP released in 2017 as an appetiser for the main feast. Volume Two arrives 2 February via Cargo Records.

If music is food for the soul, then The BellRays are thanksgiving and they know how to cook. The BellRays strip down to the meat of what music means to them. Growing up in SoCal, they thrived on radio channels that broadcast more than one kind of music. It was a party. Punk Funk Rock Soul is their party with their songs and friends.

‘We take our ear where our heart lives in simple song writing, making ourselves and hopefully all who hear it feel good,’ explains singer Lisa Kekaula. ‘We are proud of its simplicity and love how the new songs sound like old friends. This release is a collection of songs that illustrates why we do what we do. We are not 20 year olds and that’s okay. We are proud of our mileage and journey and Punk Funk Rock Soul validates our comfort in what music means to us. Viability, trend and meaning are up to the eye of the beholder… we like to rock.’

With each song, The BellRays play with the formula. The dynamics shift and change from straight ahead rockers like Bad Reaction, Junior High and Never Let a Woman to more rock/pop songs like I Can’t Hide and Brand New Day. Man Enough features tornado drumming and Caravanesque guitar solos. How do you make the dark sound light? Listen to Perfect, which is heavy while singing about finding that rhythm together. Now spreads out with a simple melody and message of being in the moment. Every Chance I Get gets to the blues with its plaintive resolution to use time as wisely as possible. Love and Hard Times” closes the album with an easy, R&B tinged lyric reminiscent of Levon Helm and The Band. Throughout Punk Funk Rock Soul, The BellRays slide from song to song, changing the dynamics but not the dynamism. In the studio or on stage, the BellRays equals energy. E=BR(P+F+R+S).

Tour support comes from Fuzzy Vox. Fuzzy Vox ought to have a disclaimer that warns listeners of the involuntary volatile spasms that follow from listening to the infectious nature of this upbeat poppy garage rock ‘n’ roll. They manage to capture a sound that reflects something that borders on rock ‘n’ roll music that is not overplayed. Rather, this group has a garage feeling that is fresh and easily infectious. Pure, high energy songs, tight playing and production, and a groovy 1960s-era comic book cover imagery makes Fuzzy Vox a joyride for fans of fun, unpretentious rock ‘n’ roll.

Buy tickets now. Tickets are available from the bar (no booking fee), Piccadilly Records, Vinyl Exchange, WeGotTickets.comTicketline.co.uk and on 0871 220 0260.

Attend on: Facebook


All shows are 18+ unless otherwise stated.
Designed by ikram_zidane

When: 7.30pm on Saturday 10 March 2018
Where: Low Four, Old Granada Studios, Security Lodge Entrance, Quay Street, Manchester M3 4PR

PLEASE NOTE: This show has been rescheduled from December 2017 to March 2018. Original tickets remain valid and all other details remain the same.

We’re delighted to be working with Bella Union’s Karl Blau again – this time, at Low Four!

Karl-Blau-Castle-Hotel-Manchester-2

On Introducing Karl Blau the enigmatic vocalist charts a new vision of country music. A Northwest indie hero, Blau channels darkness and hope in a cinematic collection of Nashville country hits from the 1960s and 1970s. Produced by Tucker Martine, the record features performances by Jim James (My Morning Jacket), Laura Veirs, Jon Hyde, Eli Moore (Lake), Steve Moore (Earth, SunnO)))), among others.

It all started with cutting a 7” single, a cover of the 1969 Tom T. Hall hit That’s How I Got to Memphis. Blau, whom Martine had come to know from sessions with Laura Veirs among others, asked if he could try singing it. ‘I knew what a special artist Karl was, but I had no idea what a powerful interpreter of songs he was,’ Martine says. The collaboration, pairing Blau’s deeply sonorous voice with Martine’s warm, modern arrangements, recast the Nashville hit in a new light. ‘He was able to communicate the essence of the song in such a moving way that we started dreaming of making a whole record based around our excitement for that collaboration.’ The result was the single and, now, Introducing Karl Blau.

Martine and Blau worked for years on shaping the narrative of the record. ‘I feel like I am starring in this country-western movie, written and produced by Tucker, and it tells a story,’ says Blau. A sense of emergence from the shadows of loss, loneliness, infidelity, and melancholy runs through Introducing Karl Blau. ‘We’ve threaded a story through the record,’ says Blau. ‘My character is moving through this dark place, but there is always this light of hope.’

The record, all covers, is a crate-digger’s feast of forgotten hits and deeper cuts; most of them from the Nashville country-soul renaissance in the late 1960s and early 1970s – Tom T. Hall, Bobby Bond, Allen Reynolds. Other songs are from the Bee Gees (To Love Somebody), Link Wray (Fallin’ Rain) or Townes Van Zandt (If I Needed You). The project was a labor of love for Martine, the son of a Nashville songwriter who grew up listening to many of these songs.

Karl Blau is a multi-instrumentalist, singer, and DIY icon who helped turn his hometown of Anacortes, Washington, into an indie-music mecca. He has released more than 40 records in 20-odd years, many self-released in handmade packaging and mailed to subscribers, and others on iconic indie Northwest labels K and knw-yr-own. Blau has also toured and recorded for years with Laura Veirs, the Microphones, Little Wings, D+ and Earth.

Tour support comes from Sumie. For a singer-songwriter, the benefit of starting from a point of quiet is the room it allows for manoeuvre afterwards. Such is the case with the subtly cinematic second album from Sandra Sumie Nagano, Lost in Light, due for release via Bella Union on 10 November. On 2013’s eponymous debut, Sumie tapped into the mid-point between Scandinavian and Japanese folk music to deliver an album of blissful restraint, its quietude shaped by a combination of parenthood and natural inclination. The follow-up is an album of stealthy dynamism, drama and mystery, its impact made all the greater because it skirts obvious routes to dance just out of hand’s reach, always seeming to be on the verge of departure. Sumie has shared a beautiful animated trailer for the album as well as new track Leave Me.

Completed in 1962, Low Four was built as part of the original Granada Studio. The live-room was originally connected to a control room above and was where The Beatles rehearsed for their first ever TV appearance. In its heyday, it was used to record theme tunes and soundtracks for classic ITV dramas such as Jewel in the Crown, Brideshead Revisited and Sherlock Holmes, often by sections of the Halle Orchestra.

Nowadays, it is used as a professional recording studio, and also streams one-off live performances by the likes of Jane Weaver, Mew, Jesca Hoop, Dutch Uncles, Polica, Alexis Taylor and Everything Everything.

This is a 14+ age restriction show. Under 16s must be accompanied by an adult.

PLEASE NOTE: This show has been rescheduled from December 2017 to March 2018. Original tickets remain valid and all other details remain the same.

Buy tickets now. Tickets are available from Piccadilly Records, Vinyl Exchange, WeGotTickets.comTicketline.co.uk and on 0871 220 0260.

Attend on: Facebook


All shows are 18+ unless otherwise stated.
Designed by ikram_zidane

When: 7.30pm on Friday 16 March 2018
Where: The Castle Hotel, 66 Oldham Street, Manchester M4 1LE

We’re delighted to be bringing Vinny Peculiar back to the Castle Hotel!

Singer-songwriter and poet Vinny Peculiar (aka Alan Wilkes) grew up in Worcestershire and trained as a nurse before signing to Manchester cult label Ugly Man records (former home to Elbow). He’s since put out twelve albums of literate autobiographical pop music over a twenty-year career and has regularly toured band, solo and duo shows.

Variously described as ‘an under sung national treasure’ (Uncut), ‘a warm hearted Morrissey’ (Q) and ‘the missing link between Jarvis Cocker and Roger McGough’ (Irish Times), his past work associations include Bill Drummond (KLF), Luke Haines and Jah Wobble (PIL), and his various bands have included ex-members of The Smiths, Oasis, Aztec Camera and The Fall. He’s also written and recorded as Parlour Flames, the band he formed in 2013 with ex-Oasis rhythm guitarist Bonehead.

Current ‘concept’ album Silver Meadows is set in a 1980s long-stay psychiatric hospital, and is also in development as a musical stage play. New album Return of the Native, a Worcestershire-inspired collection of songs, comes out in May 2018.

‘Part Pulp, part Kinks, and very much part Peculiar, this is observational, punk-tinged songwriting at its best’ – Hot Press

‘A well-measured introduction to an under sung national treasure’ – Uncut

Main support comes from Reid Anderson, a singer-songwriter from Liverpool. He writes dark, mesmerising, sweeping sounds; lyrical vessels, reminiscent of sea shanties, traveller’s songs and folk myth. Imagine The Wicker Man soundtrack written by Nick Cave, or an episode of The Twilight Zone soundtracked by Leonard Cohen and Johnny Cash.

Opening the show is Steven P Taylor. Starting out as a promoter/compere in the North West in the early 1980s at the start of ‘alternative’ comedy, Steven P Taylor worked alongside the likes of Harry Enfield, Jenny Eclair and Phil Cool. After a break in the 1990s he returned with a new comedy club in 2000, which featured among others Peter Kay, Lucy Porter and Dave Spikey. Having written poetry since school it is only over the last few years that he has started performing poetry sets around pubs and folk clubs. He organises open mic nights to encourage new original talent. His style varies from the heavily nostalgic Lancashire lifestyle to silly comic poems and contemporary commentary. His influences include John Cooper Clarke, Hovis Presley and Spike Milligan. His first book, Reflections, is due out later this year. He lives in Ramsbottom, Bury and has a leak on his flat roof.

Buy tickets now. Tickets are available from the bar (no booking fee), Piccadilly Records, Vinyl Exchange, WeGotTickets.comTicketline.co.uk and on 0871 220 0260.

Attend on: Facebook


All shows are 18+ unless otherwise stated.
Designed by ikram_zidane

When: 7.30pm on Monday 19 March 2018
Where: The Eagle Inn, 19 Collier Street, Salford, M3 7DW

Please note: This show has been rescheduled to Monday 19 March from a date earlier in March. All other details remain the same, and original tickets remain valid.

We’re delighted to be working with Glasgow’s Spinning Coin for the first time!

Over the space of three years, two singles and countless gigs, including tour supports with Teenage Fanclub and Real Estate, Spinning Coin have determinedly made their music heard: beautifully rough-hewn guitar pop that takes in frustration and escapism, but also gracefulness and splendour. Their first album, Permo, recorded with Edwyn Collins at his AED Studios, and at Glasgow’s Green Door with Stu Evans, captures this balance perfectly. It’s an album both of bold steps and of simple gestures, coming from a group who have found, seemingly effortlessly, a confident, unpretentious way of working together.

It’s partly down to their history. Starting out in 2014 as a four-piece – Sean Armstrong (guitar, vocals), Jack Mellin (guitar, vocals), Cal Donnelly (bass) and Chris White (drums) – the members of Spinning Coin have all been involved in collective, DIY music-making. They may have formed out of Armstrong’s project, the Sean Armstrong Experience, but their unique sound coalesced quickly, with Armstrong and Mellin both bringing songs to the group. Sometimes, their material is sculpted from jamming in their practice room: it’s an egalitarian way of working, a politic reflected in much of the members’ other music too, whether White’s involvement with the Winning Sperm Party collective, Donnelly’s membership of Breakfast Muff, or Mellin’s time with Smack Wizards.

Spinning Coin released a few cassettes in 2015, but made their first forays into wider consciousness with two seven-inch singles, 2016’s Albany / Sides and this year’s Raining On Hope Street / Tin, both released on The Pastels’ Domino imprint, Geographic Music. Taken together, they sketched out some parameters for the group’s songwriters – Armstrong more melancholic, Mellin’s songs full of nervous energy – with Donnelly and White framing the melodies with deft touches. But initial appearances can be deceiving, and one of the revelations of Permo is its breadth, the way both Armstrong and Mellin are happy to experiment, to take a risk on the next melody, and to see it take flight in unexpected ways.

They’ve also just welcomed new member Rachel Taylor, who appears on the album, offering, amongst other things, ghostly backing vocals on Running With The World. That’s a typically Spinning Coin development: a group fiercely engaged with community, welcoming new experience into their orbit, and looking for ways to move forwards with a warmth for humanity. It’s writ large across Permo – finding better ways to live, and to be together in the world, against the odds.

‘It’s very much an album out of time, music made out of love, rather than in pursuit of a trend’ – the Guardian

Local support comes from Sprinters. Sprinters is the project of Manchester based songwriter Neil Jarvis. The indie rock quartet recently released their self-titled debut LP on Manchester label Icecapades, receiving acclaim from the likes of The Skinny, Gold Flake Paint and Piccadilly Records. The band recently finished a tour of the UK and over the past two years have have played support slots for high profile acts such as The Monochrome Set, Elvis Depressedly, Chastity Belt and Holy Wave.

Please note: This show has been rescheduled to Monday 19 March from a date earlier in March. All other details remain the same, and original tickets remain valid.

Buy tickets now. Tickets are available from Piccadilly Records, Vinyl Exchange, WeGotTickets.comTicketline.co.uk and on 0871 220 0260.

Attend on: Facebook


All shows are 18+ unless otherwise stated.
Designed by ikram_zidane

When: 7.30pm on Friday 23 March 2018
Where: The Castle Hotel, 66 Oldham Street, Manchester M4 1LE

We’re delighted to be promoting a Bingo Records showcase!

The Bingo Records tour sees all four acts from Lancaster independent label Bingo playing around the UK. It is an introduction to the label, the bands and the little weird world that those at the label have created instead of doing something proper with their time.

The self-described ‘ham-fisted folk pop’ of Mr Ben & the Bens caught immediate attention with ‘The Bluest Blues’, which saw the band playing their first ever live performance on BBC 6 Music and being named in Marc Riley’s best of 2017 list. Speaking of his music, Mr Ben said: ‘This project was born in a barn in northern Lancashire in 2012. I’m creating lo-fi experimental folk-pop with an emphasis on melody and lyricism. My work as an artist, designer and potter constantly influences into my songwriting.

‘I’ve written about everything from catching fish to imaginary nightclubs. It’s often surreal in theme, but I always place an emphasis on having a hooky pop sensibility. I’m not a great musician technically speaking. I play the guitar upside down and the keyboard with two fingers! But I guess being naive means you can write a different kind of music and approach it from an original perspective.’

Ben released a split EP on Bingo Records with Sun Drift late last year. He has another EP on the way.

Sun Drift is the project of Lancaster based songwriter and producer Zac Barfoot. It combines his love of layered production techniques with his meandering guitar playing and laid-back mind set. Sun Drift’s offerings on the split EP with Mr Ben & the Bens see Lancaster’s most productive DIY producer expand on the more brooding aspects of his dreamy sound, building up to a full LP due out later this year.

Speaking of the new music, Barfoot said: ‘It’s Okay is a song I felt didn’t really have a place on either my last EP or the album I am currently writing. When I started with Bingo Records it felt like the perfect excuse to share it. The other songs similarly felt like outsiders, and I thought they would be a nice addition to It’s Okay. As I see it, the EP as a whole segues between the dreamier releases I’ve done in the past and a darker, more honest side of my music that is going to feature on the debut album that I am currently working on.’

Dog Daisies is a lush new indie-country-garage-pop band from Lancaster. Inspired by midnight walks, 90’s movies, motorways and the Lancashire coast. Formerly known as Stephen Hudson & the Fiat Pandas, Abraham Heights is the new group’s first recording since the Pandas’ Used to be Fun (2016).

As Stephen explains: ‘Some of our favourite films or songs feel like a dream you’ve just had; they make perfect sense when you’re in it but if you try to work it out, everything unravels. It seemed fun to start turning images in my head into a sonic language and just scatter the words over the top. It was enjoyable singing about hating your job selling cups, or fantasising about burying your best friend’s mum under a hill because she gave you a hard time… but with this new band I wanted to write less autobiographically and let our imaginations wander even further.’

Abraham Heights is Dog Daisies’ first single on Bingo Records and precedes their full length debut album due for release later in 2018.

Family Selection Box are a three piece art-pop outfit from Lancaster. Formed in 2016, Tom Diffenthal asked illustrators Lauren Dowling and Alanna Rusch to form a band to make a new recording project a reality. Both learned their instruments (bass and drums respectively) from scratch, and played their first gig (in Lauren’s mum’s front room) just weeks after forming.

The project soon turned to collaboration as the rhythm section contributed creatively. Tom’s kitchen sink lyrics combine with Lauren’s melodic sensibility and Alanna’s rhythmic intuition to create an instantly recognisable soundtrack to their refusal to take themselves too seriously, and their gloriously DIY approach to everything they do. Family Selection Box release the new album Confetti on Bingo Records in the run up to the label tour.

Buy tickets now. Tickets are available from the bar (no booking fee), Piccadilly Records, Vinyl Exchange, WeGotTickets.comTicketline.co.uk and on 0871 220 0260.

Attend on: Facebook


All shows are 18+ unless otherwise stated.
Designed by ikram_zidane

When: 7.30pm on Friday 23 March 2018
Where: Low Four, Old Granada Studios, Security Lodge Entrance, Quay Street, Manchester M3 4PR

We’re delighted to be working with Mt. Wolf again – this time, at Low Four!

Having impressed the online tastemakers with their early EP releases Red (2015) and Hex (2016), Mt. Wolf’s hallmark splicing of electronic and acoustic elements and layered sounds has earned them comparisons to the likes of Sigur Rós, Bon Iver, The National and London Grammar. In May 2017 the band released their much anticipated debut album, Aetherlight via CRC Music.

Mt. Wolf have seen their presence across the world grow exponentially over the last 18 months, with hundreds of thousands of weekly listeners on Spotify and radio support in both the US, Australia and the UK. Their debut album received significant support from streaming services and online tastemakers overall and their stand-alone single Golden feat. St. South has had over seven million streams on Spotify in just over a year.

On the live side it’s been a busy year and half for the band with a UK and European headline tour in addition to a series of festivals worldwide including SXSW 2016 and 2017, Mondo NYC 2017, Glastonbury 2017, MaMA (France), Secret Garden Party and John Grant’s North Flux Festival to mention a few.

October 2017 saw the release of the Aetherlight ‘Instrumental’ album, highlighting the sweeping sonic landscapes that the band create. There is no hex on this band; just the most mouthwatering of futures.

Completed in 1962, Low Four was built as part of the original Granada Studio. The live-room was originally connected to a control room above and was where The Beatles rehearsed for their first ever TV appearance. In its heyday, it was used to record theme tunes and soundtracks for classic ITV dramas such as Jewel in the Crown, Brideshead Revisited and Sherlock Holmes, often by sections of the Halle Orchestra.

Nowadays, it is used as a professional recording studio, and also streams one-off live performances by the likes of Jane Weaver, Mew, Jesca Hoop, Dutch Uncles, Polica, Alexis Taylor and Everything Everything.

This is a 14+ age restriction show. Under 16s must be accompanied by an adult.

Buy tickets now. Tickets are available from Piccadilly Records, Vinyl Exchange, WeGotTickets.comTicketline.co.uk and on 0871 220 0260.

Attend on: Facebook


All shows are 18+ unless otherwise stated.
Designed by ikram_zidane

When: 7.30pm on Saturday 24 March 2018
Where: The White Hotel, Dickinson Street, Manchester M3 1ND

We’re delighted to be helping Elle Mary & The Bad Men launch their debut album!

On 9 March 2018 Elle Mary & The Bad Men release their debut album. Entitled Constant Unfailing Night, the nine-track record follows the release of the Bloom In Thickened Skin EP, and showcases the beautiful, stunning and arresting voice of haunting folk-noir singer songwriter Elle Mary.

Currently residing in Manchester where she launched and ran The Folk Cellar for two years, Elle Mary started out as an acoustic folk singer, and her debut album sees her wear her heart and colour her emotions on her sleeve. The record started in response to a break up, morphing into a beautiful journey via the process of grief through which Elle Mary found inspiration and rejuvenation, leaving her previous folk textures behind as she picked up her brother’s electric guitar and transformed into the darker, spidery Elle Mary & The Bad Men. This is what lies beneath the subtle tension that tugs at the heart of her and The Bad Men’s acoustically webbed slowcore minimalism.

‘I’ve moved from folk to this “heavy noir” or whatever you want to call it,’ says Elle Mary. ‘The Bad Men – Michael Dubec and Pete Sitch – have joined me on this journey and probably know me too well as a result of it. The weight they add to the songs is incredible and I really couldn’t ask for a better band.’

From the empowering Behave (Video of The Week on God Is In The TV Zine), a song about suppressed rage that sees the singer find strength in saying what she really wants to an ex-lover (‘I pen your name, Try to find a delicate way, To ask you, To ask you, To go, Fuck yourself’), via Pretend, a satirical look into flings in the dreamy and experimental, and the emotional complexity of the brooding Happiness, Constant Unfailing Night is a deeply personal piece of work. The album is dedicated to the singer’s late father: his passing; her mourning; his story telling; their shared memories; as is evident in the heart-wrenching Undead (‘Bloom, In thickened skin, Awaken, A peace within’) and the jangly Later, which brings the record to a close.

The one consistent throughout Elle Mary’s musical metamorphosis, and what pulls you into her compelling world, is the use of space. ‘Space and a minimal approach have always been the most important part of the music to me, to do more with less,’ says the singer. ‘It’s this that draws me in the most about the artists I love (Low, Julie Doiron, Bill Callahan etc). This allows for my voice to sit on top and the words seep in.’

Elle Mary has performed with Low, La Luz, Jenny Hval, Daniel Knox, Dan Michaelson, Smoke Fairies, Jo Rose and Tara Jane O’Neil, as well as playing a house concert tour of Europe and acclaimed shows throughout UK. Capturing these spellbinding live performances, the album was recorded at Queen’s Ark Studio in Levenshulme and the beautiful 80Hertz. ‘It was very simple, we didn’t do too many overdubs or anything as I like the sound to be as close to what it would be live. I find it more honest,’ says the Welsh-born songstress.

‘Striking folk-noir, her work recalls Jenny Hval or even Sharon Van Etten in it’s ability to process the world around her’ – Clash

Main support is Secret Admirer, the solo project from Nick Ainsworth of Former Bullies and Dinner Party fame. In 2016 he released a 20-song self-titled tape via Belfast’s CF Records. He will be joined here by his live band.

Opening the show is Tekla. Tekla is a local solo performer whose eerie lullabies have been described as ‘understated, yet brimming with invention and delicate beauty’. Expect layered imagery, spacious melodies and fragile fingerpicking.

AGE RESTRICTION: This show is 16+.

Buy tickets now. Tickets are available from Piccadilly Records, Vinyl Exchange, WeGotTickets.comTicketline.co.uk and on 0871 220 0260.

Attend on: Facebook


All shows are 18+ unless otherwise stated.
Designed by ikram_zidane

When: 7.30pm on Thursday 29 March 2018
Where: Soup Kitchen, 31-33 Spear Street, Manchester M1 1DF

PLEASE NOTE: Due to unforeseen circumstances, this show has been moved to Soup Kitchen. Original tickets remain valid, and all other details remain the same.

We’re delighted to be bringing Sweet Baboo back to Gullivers – with special guests Seazoo!

Sweet Baboo recently shared the video for Swallows, taken from his most recent album Wild Imagination (June 2017, Moshi Moshi). Featuring Stephen braving the elements in various historical army gear while his partner and child (also played by Stephen) wait anxiously at home, it’s a light-hearted playful video that compliments the French pop feel of the song. Stephen says of it: ‘This, the final instalment in director James Hankins’ trilogy, is my favourite video so far. For fans of Dunkirk.’

After the Harry Nilsson-esque love songs of 2015’s The Boombox Ballads, Black embarks on a new mission on Wild Imagination: to find the perfect pick-me-up antidote to the winter of our discontent.

The result is a bright, wry, melodically buoyant and sweetly melancholy tonic from the North Wales (born in Trefriw, near Snowdonia; now Cardiff-based) singer: a tribute to the joys of travel and the warming return home alike. Previously, Black’s co-travelling collaborators have included Carmarthenshire’s Cate Le Bon. But his sweet sentiments and winning melodies have been constant companions for all open-hearted listeners since 2003. And they prove so once more on Wild Imagination, with impeccable timing.

‘A beautifully judged psych-pop records that hums with warmth, quiet eccentricity and gentle tryness recalling Robert Wyatt, ’60s French pop and Gruff Rhys‘ solo fare’ –  Uncut

‘Wild Imagination is a paean to positivity, the songs united by a single thread of finding joy in little things. The standouts here are among the prettiest work that he’s yet turned out’ – DIY

Support comes from Seazoo, an act that started out as nothing more than a bedroom-recording project in 2013. Surprising momentum built, however, as their Grandaddy/Yo La Tengo/SFA-inspired recordings began to gain support from the BBC. Huw Stephens, Lauren Laverne, Steve Lamacq, Mark Radcliffe have all played previous tunes from the Ken, Car Deborah and JUMBO EPs. Rather excellently, Marc Riley invited them to perform a live session for his 6 Music show. They accepted, ferociously.

Buy tickets now. Tickets are available from the bar (no booking fee), Piccadilly Records, Vinyl Exchange, WeGotTickets.comTicketline.co.uk and on 0871 220 0260.

Attend on: Facebook


All shows are 18+ unless otherwise stated.
Designed by ikram_zidane

Read our monthly gig guides on Creativetourist.com.