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: James Yuill... John Murry... Jack Cooper... Danny & The Champions Of The World... Slim Cessna’s Auto Club... Avec Sans... Kiran Leonard... Michael Nau... Good Morning... Jen Cloher... Dotan... Jolie Holland & Samantha Parton... Jeffrey Lewis & Los Bolts... The Dears... Thomas Truax... Frankie Rose... The Weather Station... The Breath... The Lovely Eggs... The Proper Ornaments... Robbie Cavanagh... BA Johnston... Wesley Gonzalez... CC Smugglers... Weyes Blood... Jared & The Mill... Julie Byrne... The Burning Hell... Left Lane Cruiser... Son of Dave... Daniel Romano... The Travelling Band... Aldous Harding... William the Conqueror... Wolf Parade... Skinny Lister + Beans on Toast... Lost Horizons... Leif Vollebekk... Euros Childs... Lowly... Jesca Hoop... Karl Blau... The Deslondes... Will Varley...

When: 7.30pm on Wednesday 13 September 2017
Where: The Castle Hotel, 66 Oldham Street, Manchester M4 1LE

We’re delighted to be working with James Yuill for the first time!

James Yuill is pleased to announce his fourth studio album A Change In State, due out on 28 July. Four years in the making, A Change In State is the much-anticipated follow up to 2013’s These Spirits. James has also announced a string of UK dates in September.

Having toured around the world alongside the likes of Phoenix, Hot Chip, Royksopp and M83, to name a few, James has become renowned for his incredible one-man, electro-folk shows. The Hackney-based musician’s music has been featured on Gray’s Anatomy, Scrubs, One Tree Hill, The Inbetweeners and Pretty Little Liars. He also wrote the music and starred in his own Guinness Christmas advert.

He has received support from Radio 1’s Zane Lowe, Huw Stephens and Rob Da Bank, along with BBC 6 Music’s Radcliffe and Maconie and Steve Lamacq.

James Yuill will release A Change In State on 28 July on The Happy Biscuit Club.

‘Minimalist beauty’ – The Sunday Times

‘Winning union of synths and folk, James Yuill performs a skilful balancing act as he reconciles influences as diametrically opposed as Nick Drake and The Chemical Brothers’ – Q

‘Gorgeous and gargantuan at the same time’ – Clash

Local support comes from Falling Ghost. Falling Ghost is the solo project of Manchester based multi-instrumentalist and producer Daniel Sweeney; formerly singer-songwriter with the band Sylvia. With Sylvia Daniel recorded two albums, toured both the UK and Europe and achieved national radio play (BBC Radio 2 and BBC 6 Music). Their music was described as ‘daring and original’ by Ivor Novello-winning producer Jon Cotton and as ‘absolutely amazing’ by Janice Long of BBC Radio 2. Since leaving Sylvia Daniel spent all of 2016 writing, recording and producing his first solo album. The album Pure O is set to be released later this year on Regent Street Records. It inhabits a sound world similar to the XX, London Grammar, James Blake, Burial and Radiohead, mixing electronic drums with atmospheric textures, mesmeric production and heart rending melodies. It was mastered by John Davies (The XX, Lana Del Rey, Gorillaz). Falling Ghost is due to begin touring Pure O later this year to coincide with the release of his first single.

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.

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All shows are 18+ unless otherwise stated.
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When: 7.30pm on Friday 15 September 2017
Where: The Castle Hotel, 66 Oldham Street, Manchester M4 1LE

PLEASE NOTE: This show is completely sold out! Join our mailing list, above, for details of future Manchester shows.

We’re delighted to be working with John Murry again – this time, at the Castle Hotel!

John Murry was adopted at birth into the family of William Faulkner. Some have speculated that the Faulkner blood might also run in his veins, but that should be left for a Southern Gothic novel yet to be written (or perhaps re-written). Raised in Tupelo, Mississippi, in the shadow of Elvis, his undiagnosed autism led to troubles at an early age, which led to prescribed medication, which led to unprescribed medication, which led to being institutionalised for addiction and mental health issues at a too young age. Eventually, discarded onto the streets of Memphis, he found music, which became the one constant positive force in his life. Memphis led to San Francisco and San Francisco led to heroin and heroin led to a near fatal overdose on the corner of 16th and Mission, so harrowingly memorialised in his song Little Colored Balloons.

Music again came to his rescue and led him to Tim Mooney (American Music Club) and the group of musicians that helped create his 2012 masterpiece The Graceless Age. The album was hailed by MOJO magazine and received a 5 out of 5 rating, UNCUT called it a ‘masterpiece’, both magazines included it in their Top 10 albums of the year; American Songwriter put it in their Top 5 of the year and the Guardian included it in their best of the year as well. The accolades rolled in and John toured the world. He entranced and devastated audiences with his raw, unfiltered live performances, and it looked like his trajectory was set, that music had won and would have the final word. And then Tim Mooney, John’s mentor, his beacon, his bedrock, died suddenly and unexpectedly… and John’s world fell back in to chaos.

Over the next few years, John would lose the footing that he had struggled so hard to establish. He would lose his wife, his daughter, temporarily his freedom and ultimately his country.

Somewhere along this journey, John crossed paths with Michael Timmins of Cowboy Junkies. John had opened for the band at a show in Glasgow and Michael watched side-stage transfixed by John’s performance. Over the next few years the two of them kept in touch, they talked about the music business, politics, books, but most of all they talked about music. And they talked about making an album together. Michael wanted to capture the rawness of John’s songs, capture the vibe that he experienced that night in Glasgow and was even more convinced of this approach when John came through Toronto opening for Chuck Prophet and did a solo set at The Horseshoe Tavern, which was as disarming and emotional as the set of music that he had experienced in Glasgow a couple of years earlier. ‘On The Graceless Age you can hear John’s affinity to artists such as Mark Linkous and Mark Lanegan, but seeing him on stage, with just his guitar and his songs reminded me of Townes (Van Zandt), that raw-boned, exquisite beauty, so real that it borders on the uncomfortable, you feel you should look away, but it’s just too compelling to do so. The pain, the intensity, the honesty just draws you deeper.’

Eventually John completed his descent and landed in Kilkenny, Ireland where he found some solid ground as part of a welcoming arts community. Michael then convinced him to travel to his Toronto studio where Michael put a band together consisting of brother Peter Timmins (Cowboy Junkies) on drums and Josh Finlayson (Skydiggers, Gord Downie, Lee Harvey Osmond) on bass. John brought along Cait O’Riordan (The Pogues, Elvis Costello) whom he had met in Ireland and who wanted to be a part of John’s journey. The five of them put aside five days to record all bedtracks and overdubs, with the brief that they would let the songs dictate where the journey took them, spontanaity was the order of the week. Michael Timmins describes the sessions, ‘I felt that it was important that John got out of his own way and that we set up a situation where he would just play and sing and the rest of us would just react, no second guessing, just react and capture the moment. It was a very inspired and inspiring week of playing and recording. Very intense. And I think we captured the raw essence of John’s writing and playing”’

A Short History Of Decay is an intensely personal document of an artist’s fall from grace. It contains all the tragic elements of that unwritten Southern Gothic novel: the revelations of a man coming to terms with the personal shortcomings, the flaws and the perverse twists of fate that led him to the end of one journey and the beginning of another.

Special guest is Nadine Khouri. Nadine Khouri is a musician and songwriter currently based in London. Influenced by dream-pop, film soundtracks and spoken-word, Khouri’s sound has been described as a ‘music born of perennial outsider status’. Noted by John Parish (PJ Harvey, Giant Sand) for her voice, Khouri was invited to sing on a track on his Screenplay LP and subsequently to record her album The Salted Air with the producer in his hometown of Bristol. Sparse and minimal in its arrangement, the record is a haunting collection of poetic and atmospheric meditations on loss and transformation, reminiscent of the dreamy alt-folk of Mazzy Star and Sparklehorse.

‘Meditative, spectral dreamscapes… extraordinary voice: a fragile, sensuous instrument’ – MOJO

PLEASE NOTE: This show is completely sold out! Join our mailing list, above, for details of future Manchester shows.

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When: 7.30pm on Friday 15 September 2017
Where: The Eagle Inn, 19 Collier Street, Salford, M3 7DW

We’re delighted to be working with Ultimate Painting’s Jack Cooper, who is touring his debut solo album!

Sandgrown – Jack Cooper of Ultimate Painting’s first solo record – is nine concisely beautiful songs inspired by his hometown of Blackpool and his upbringing on England’s Fylde Coast. Evoking the delicate but often widescreen musicality of Bill Fay and the abstract lyricism of the late 60s Scott Walker records, as well as the more experimental sounds of John Cale and Robert Wyatt, Sandgrown’s tranquil ballads evoke feelings of nostalgia and re-evaluation about where you come from, wherever that may be. Its lead track is North Of Anywhere.

Jack says of the song: ‘I think one good thing about the EU referendum that happened last year is that everyone seems more engaged with politics in the aftermath. I’m quite open with my opinions and I enjoy discussing things, but my opinions change from week to week and like most people my world view changes when I’m presented with a compelling argument. There’s a huge pressure on people and especially young people to think a certain way, especially online. If you don’t subscribe 100% to a particular ideology, then you’re out the club. I think it can be incredibly intimidating nowadays to voice an opinion… If you’re young, maybe people will say “you don’t know what you’re talking about” or if you’re Northern and you voted to leave the EU, you’re immediately a racist.’

‘Everyone’s from somewhere,’ continues Jack. ‘I don’t think it’s particularly important people know this album is about Blackpool, but I think everyone can empathise with the themes on the record.’

Jack spent the first 13 years of his life living in the rural village of Poulton-le-Fylde, about five miles outside Blackpool. On moving into town, he spent his summers as a deckchair attendant, soaking up the community of people who lived and worked around the seafront – lifeguards, carnival workers, donkey owners, skateboarders, transients and hippies. ‘There were just a lot of interesting people around all the time… weirdos who were drawn to the seaside in the summer. Winter would come and you had this huge community of people who didn’t really know what to do.’

By the time Jack was 15, Blackpool’s role as a holiday destination was dwindling due to the introduction of cheap air travel to Europe. Stacks of deckchairs were increasingly left unused, and in the winter months it became a place of drugs, seedy bars and people struggling to get by without the tourist trade. As the Blackpool he knew slipped away, 20-year-old Jack moved to Manchester where he soon began playing in bands and recording.

Sandgrown is about those formative years and the creation of it: ‘I’ve been trying to do this record since I was about 18… I bought my first four-track with the proceeds of a summer working on the promenade and I guess I got sidetracked along the way. I’ve been listening to Terry Allen’s Lubbock (On Everything) a lot and I wanted to make something that painted a picture of a place as vividly as that. I love how Frank Sinatra’s Watertown feels so cinematic.’

Uninhibited by band members for the first time was a freeing experience for Cooper. ‘Recording on my own liberated me to sing more like I actually sing. I think I’ve spent a long time in loud bands singing in a way that can be heard through music,’ Jack says. ‘The songs that I wrote for Sandgrown suit my voice more than anything I’ve done before.’

Working within the confines of a four-track cassette machine, Jack has produced his most satisfying work to date: ‘I love the physicality of working on tape. I’ve always had a four-track but I sought out a particular machine. I’m not a huge Bruce Springsteen fan but I love the sound of Nebraska… I needed that specific machine.’

Sandgrown by Jack Cooper is released 25 August via Trouble In Mind Records.

Tour support comes from Cian Nugent. Night Fiction (January, 2016) is Cian Nugent’s third album but his first taking on the role of singer-songwriter. Where his previous two albums: 2013’s Born With The Caul and 2011’s Doubles saw him exploring extended guitar based instrumentals with his band, The Cosmos, here he has reigned things in and focused his songwriting skills. Guitar fans, do not fear, there is still plenty of soloing and fingerpicking here. With seven songs both solo and with his band, this album amalgamates everything Cian has done up to this point and reveals a more broad palate of influences, including The Velvet Underground, Richard Thompson, Television, Neil Young, John Lennon, Fred Neil, etc.

Local support comes from Manchester’s own Songs For Walter – aka Laurie Hulme. Signed to Red Deer Club, he lists The Magnetic Fields, Bill Callahan and Destroyer among his influences, and has been described by Tom Ravenscroft as ‘one of my favourite discoveries of recent years’.

This show is a co-promotion with Comfortable On A Tightrope.

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

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All shows are 18+ unless otherwise stated.
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When: 7pm on Friday 15 September 2017
Where: Soup Kitchen, 31-33 Spear Street, Manchester M1 1DF

We’re delighted to be working with Danny & The Champions Of The World again – this time, at Soup Kitchen!

Here come Danny & The Champions Of The World writing themselves large, giving themselves the space, and taking the time, to deliver a magnum opus. With Brilliant Light Danny Wilson has made his All Things Must Pass – a big record of hit after hit stretching over two albums plus a further bonus set of instrumentals. He’s allowed both himself and his band the absolute freedom to explore, experiment, and collaborate, and they’ve grabbed it with both hands. Hidden away somewhere in this diverse collection you’ll find the question: ‘can we release ourselves back into the brilliant light?’ For Danny the brilliant light is creativity, but more than that it’s collaborative creativity, and the process of birthing these songs, both by design and then serendipity, has been to maximise the creative potential of all The Champs.

The two previous Champs collections, Stay True (2013) and What Kind Of Love (2015), were recorded in intensive ten day stints. The songs written and rehearsed, the musicians gathered in North London at bassist Chris Clarke’s Reservoir Studios and tracked everything at one fell swoop. This time around Danny wanted something different allowing an all-encompassing view of what the band was capable of. They started going into Reservoir once a month, recording what they had live, without too much reflection or correction, and then putting those results in a box and leaving them be. Every month saw a scramble to find songs to record requiring an encouragement to every band member to bring something to the table. Writing with guitarist Paul Lush for What Kind Of Love had proved liberating to Danny who’d rarely co-composed since writing with brother Julian for his previous band Grand Drive. It was exciting and rejuvenating. Scary too but reawakening, and so he’d repeatedly be asking, ‘have you got an idea for a song?’ and as the months passed and the cache grew more things were tried; different configurations, other collaborators, and along the way a cluster of instrumentals arrived too.

Of the eighteen songs here only Waiting For The Right Time is solely composed by Danny; personal philosophy, reflections on Ronnie Lane, and a paean to neckerchief rock all rolled into one. It’s the same spirit imbuing his music-making all the way from the early Champs barn shows in rural Oxfordshire with cider and painted faces; it found particular expression on Streets Of Our Time (2010) but burns through Brilliant Light just as strongly and shows up in the singalong Everything We Need. Chris Clarke co-wrote that, and with John Wheatley of The Suburban Dirts came up with the soulful Arthur Alexander-ish It Hit Me. Guitarist Paul Lush provided Never In The Moment – a hard-hitting number with a lot of brass and something akin to The Band doing The Weight with The Staple Singers. The beautiful Coley Point, one of Danny’s personal highlights, sees him set a tune to words by Caught By The River‘s resident poet Will Burns. Bring Me To My Knees and the cryptic The Circus Made The Town are both co-writes with James Yorkston, while Polly Paulusma and Carra Bacon contribute to Swift Street. Deeply personal and inspired by three family photographs; Swift Street in Melbourne is where Danny’s mother grew up, and where in childhood he stayed with his grandparents. The song is near-Proustian in its recall of smells and tastes of past days.

You can’t overstate the importance of family and friends to Danny. It was surely, in part, a kind of loyalty to Julian that he didn’t co-compose for so long after the demise of Grand Drive; certainly until now, and Andy Fairclough’s arrival, there had been no specialist keyboard player in the Champs. Andy brings a Mod sensibility, a jazz grounding, and a fearlessness to the band. He plainly pushes Paul Lush, already a key improviser in live performance. You see them raising the bar for each other in the run-outs of two of the longer songs; Consider Me and Gotta Get Things Right In My Life. Giving them free rein and allowing them the space to show what they regularly do on the stage was another reason for the extended format, though it’s not entirely coincidental that The Allman Brothers, and Al Kooper and Mike Bloomfield, have been much on Danny’s turntable over the last year or so. Thus Brilliant Light is shone on a year in the life of the Champs and all the pieces are seen in play; Chris Clarke on production duty, and with Steve Brookes comprising the formidable rhythm section. Geoff Widdowson still blowing on that alto sax, and Henry Senior Jr ensconced on the pedal steel. Robin and Joe Bennett from The Dreaming Spires, Siobhan Parr, Danni Nicholls and Treetop Flyer Reid Morrison all singing along, and from time to time a pair of brass players (Gram Canyon and Craig Chapman) and another sax (Helleanor Fitt).

The Champs are understandably proud of what they’ve achieved. Chris Clarke says outright it’s the best record this line-up has come up with so far, while for Danny it’s ‘a bit like taking a peek into somebody’s house; there’s great stuff that immediately grabs your attention, and then there’s other stuff and you start out thinking it might be a bit mundane but as the whole picture takes shape it proves to be incredibly beautiful’. That’s typical Danny Wilson, a brave stab at modesty but far too honest to sell himself short. He and his band are already much loved; for their whole-hearted openness, their democracy, and their sheer joy in what they do. They’re going to be loved too for this record. Very soon Brilliant Light will be the soundtrack to an awful lot of people’s lives, and that is no small achievement.

Tour support comes from William The Conqueror. William The Conqueror’s bluesy indie-Americana has already seen them head out to Nashville to perform at AmericanaFest, share a stage with the likes of Richard Thompson and Van Morrison courtesy of a nomination for Song of the Year at the UK Americana Awards, and sign to Loose Music, where they join an immensely impressive roster including Courtney Marie Andrews, Sturgill Simpson, Andrew Combs, The Handsome Family and Danny and the Champions of the World.

Their eagerly awaited debut album is called Proud Disturber of the Peace and will be out on 4 August. Recorded in sessions that took the band from Cornwall right up to the Isle of Lewis and back again, the album features the multi-instrumental talents of Harry Harding, Naomi Holmes and Ruarri Joseph, a name many folk fans may remember from his acclaimed solo output.

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.

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All shows are 18+ unless otherwise stated.
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When: 7.30pm on Wednesday 20 September 2017
Where: The Castle Hotel, 66 Oldham Street, Manchester M4 1LE

We’re delighted to be working with Slim Cessna’s Auto Club for the first time – plus guest Breadfoot!

In September 2016, Slim Cessna’s Auto Club released their new album, The Commandments According to SCAC. It has been 24 years since Slim Cessna parted ways with The Denver Gentlemen, that grand progenitor of the peculiar strain of Gothic Americana unique to the Mile High City, to form Slim Cessna’s Auto Club with a group of talented peers.

Many bands with a long and successful run like that would stick close to its roots. But rather than rest on well-earned laurels, the Auto Club challenged itself to break with well-worn modes of operating for the new record.

Wallace Stenger may have captured the spirit of the west in his 1971 novel Angle of Repose. Jim Thompson surely exposed the lurid underbelly of the Western experience. Cormac McCarthy definitely evoked the conflicted, tortured spirit of small town life on the frontier. William Faulkner and Flannery O’Connor informed all of them with a humour and soulfulness. It is that literary tradition that imbues the harrowing and celebratory sound and riveting stories of Slim Cessna’s Auto Club. And for a full 20 years it was largely in that realm of art that the Auto Club revelled and garnered a loyal cult following well beyond the boundaries of The Queen City of the Plains.

But no band can be satisfied with treading the same territory that it helped to define forever. The Commandments According to SCAC will be the first full-length album of original material released on the Auto Club’s own imprint, SCACUNINCORPORATED.

The title evokes the themes of cosmic punishment and redemption that have served the band’s songwriting engine so well in the past. But this set of songs sounds more hopeful and expansive, a quality that was always there but this time out the brighter sides of the songwriting are emphasised. Hints of this saw early full-flown expression on 2008’s Cipher and Unentitled from 2011.

With The Commandments, however, the Auto Club seems to step forward into the promise of its own possibilities. It remains capable of the heady darkness and celebratory intensity with which it made its name.

Now that charmingly dusky and spare sound breathes with a color and delicacy of feeling that perhaps sat in the background in times past. Maybe it’s partly due to the greater creative contributions from longtime collaborator Rebecca Vera and The Peeler or the inclusion of upright bass player Ian O’ Dougherty. But the core of the band’s songwriting and sound is anchored firmly in the vision of Slim, Munly Munly and Lord Dwight Pentacost.

Whatever the true source of this transformation, The Commandments According to SCAC sounds like a band marshalling its creative inspiration to mark out a new chapter of its existence. When you get to see the Auto Club tour following the album’s release, you’ll get to see an already mighty band reinvigorated by this new spirit as well as by the fire that has long burned in its collective belly.

Special guest is Breadfoot. Breadfoot was spawn of the East River Delta. He digs his whiskey neat and his coffee black. He is a one-man band whose idiosyncratic take on life and wide range of influences from The Carter Family and The Sherman Brothers to Tom Waits, fuels his unique brand of Tin Pan Americana.

Live, Breadfoot has been described by London Time Out as ‘gritty guitar picking and home-spun wisdom… a raconteur par excellence’. He has shared the stage with The Avett Brothers, Malcolm Holcombe, Regina Spektor, Kimya Dawson, Langhorne Slim, The Decemberists, Richard Buckner, Gary Lucas and the Larry Love Show Band (the acoustic branch of Alabama 3).

His most recent album Salvatella was released in August 2015. The new album from the opening solo acoustic salve of the title track to the final cymbal crash of the Dixieland inspired Still Can’t (Find My Heart) that closes out the side is his most adventurous to date. It has been described by Americana UK as ‘a refreshing alternative to some of the more archetypal Americana’.

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.

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All shows are 18+ unless otherwise stated.
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When: 7.30pm on Thursday 21 September 2017
Where: The Castle Hotel, 66 Oldham Street, Manchester M4 1LE

We’re delighted to be working with Avec Sans again – this time, at the Castle Hotel!

Avec Sans are Alice Fox and Jack St James, from Manchester and Trinidad respectively, now living in London. They make dreamy electronic pop music. Signed to US label Beverly Martel, Avec Sans’ single releases have achieved national radio play and media acclaim and their debut album Heartbreak Hi charted in the top 50 on iTunes.

Avec Sans started performing live in 2014 and quickly gained recognition for their energetic shows. Aiming to break down the walls of electronic laptop performances, Jack hacked his Novation launch pad to display a light show and uses three of them in tandem tilted towards the audience.

Avec Sans supported Ladyhawke on her 2016 UK tour and have played alongside acts such as Little Boots, Capital Cities, Bright Light Bright Light and The Pet Shop Boys. They’ve played live for BBC Introducing and at events such as SxSW, Cannes Lions, Canadian Music Week, CMJ New York, The Great Escape, Kendal Calling and other European events.

‘Avec Sans are a cut above your average duo… right on the sweet spot between hazy ‘80s nostalgia and 21st century introspection’ – NME

Support comes from brand new Manchester synth-pop duo Koalas.

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.

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All shows are 18+ unless otherwise stated.
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When: 7pm on Saturday 23 September 2017
Where: Band on the Wall, 26 Swan Street, Manchester M4 5JZ

We’re delighted to be working with Kiran Leonard again – this time, performing his new album, Derevaun Seraun.

Kiran Leonard announces details of a new album Derevaun Seraun, set to be released 15 September on Moshi Moshi. It is the follow-up to 2016’s acclaimed Grapefruit LP, his first for Moshi Moshi.

Lead single, Living With Your Ailments, is a seven-minutes-plus song inspired by Albert Camus’ 1942 philosophy work The Myth of Sisyphus. ‘I read it for the first time as an unhappy, nervous 17-year-old and I found it deeply moving and comforting,’ says Leonard. ‘It is an essay about taking the cards we are dealt – mortality, nothingness, uncertainty – and doing our best with them, in humour and in optimism and in open-mindedness.’

Leonard has also announced details of a UK tour to coincide with the release, on which he’ll be accompanied by a string trio to perform Derevaun Seraun in full. The short tour includes a special night at Manchester’s Band on the Wall on Saturday 23 September, featuring voice, piano and string trio.

Read on for Leonard’s statement on Derevaun Seraun.

‘DEREVAUN SERAUN is a piece I wrote a couple years back in five movements for voice, piano and string trio. Each movement is written about a different piece of literature, exploring the value I see in each work and the impression it has made on me, and there is nothing more to it than that. The pleasure of books – of good verse and stories and ideas – is a very simple thing, and I felt that some lofty unifying theme for the entire piece would be a betrayal of that belief. I think that when a work resonates with you it is an instinctive response to something. You can be taught to understand a challenging book, but not to feel affection for it; I think a lot of conversation around art, especially around literature, sometimes forgets this. In my experience, the art I like the most, irrespective of its “difficulty”, is the art I can advocate most directly and plainly, and about which I can say: “I read this piece and now I do not read or think in the same way that I did before”, or: “This is a story that I could not explain to someone; I do not understand it word-for-word, yet I feel like innately I understand the whole, and that the whole spoke to me”. This is a piece about five books that I like and why I like them.’

‘A singular new talent is being forged’ – the Guardian

‘Leonard is an autodidact of amazing talent and energy’ – Pitchfork

Support comes from Leantime. Leantime is Elin Rossiter (of Elle Mary & The Bad Men) and Nick Ainsworth (of Former Bullies). Their songs are melancholic and hopeful – focussing on harmony in sound and disharmony in content. Think Emmylou and Gram, Nancy and Lee or June and Johnny. It’s classic songwriting, delivered honestly and plainly.

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

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All shows are 18+ unless otherwise stated.
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When: 7.30pm on Monday 25 September 2017
Where: Gullivers, 109 Oldham Street, Manchester, M4 1LW

We’re delighted to be working with Michael Nau again!

Michael Nau is just 6 months on from putting out his first album under his own name and is preparing for its follow up with a sense of immediacy. A new collection of twelve songs entitled Some Twist represents some of his most sharp and moving work to date, and finds the Maryland-born songwriter looking to move quickly enough to avoid some of the stop/start nature that had previously left large gaps of time falling between his output. While last year’s Mowing and its standout single Love Survive can be viewed as commercial and critical successes for Nau, it was the act of putting the album out to begin with that was perhaps the biggest victory. After veering away from two different outfits he had fronted in the mid-to-late aughts, Nau had spent an a good deal of time overthinking his next move to a semi-paralysing degree:

‘Mowing felt like a success for me because I had just spent so long with no idea if was ever-going to put out a record again. I felt like I was going to write music for the rest of my life and maybe go play some shows, but in the back of my mind I wasn’t sure I still had the courage to put an album out into the world. I spent so much time passing through, working on things and then just throwing them away and moving on to the next thing. So really, it was a success because it came out at all. At the time I would tell people in my life that I was working on a record, but nothing would happen. So when it finally came out it felt like getting over a wall in a way, because I had somehow forgotten how to put things together and finish them.’

Upon the urging of others around him, Nau did eventually put Mowing together and saw fans and the critical community alike respond in 2016. Said Pitchfork upon the album’s release: ‘His masterful instinct for arrangement, along with his reedy voice, earns Nau a place in the rock’n’roll underdogs’ Hall of Fame.’ Shortly thereafter, the uplifting single Love Survive caught the attention of various BBC Radio DJs and programmers, leading to an extended run of airplay that has spread to a brand new audience throughout Europe. But Nau is resisting the urge to fall into the same habit of tinkering for too long again. Some Twist was recorded just after Mowing saw its release in Europe, wrapping it up in early January 2017. February saw Michael debut some of the new material live on KCRW’s Morning Becomes Eclectic.

The album’s first single, Good Thing, was released in March, a driving flurry of introspection laid within a piano and fuzz arrangement. Second single Light That Ever was released just now. Some Twist will see its release on 16 June via Full Time Hobby. Overall, the album splits its time between feeling both energised and unhurried, while featuring the same penetrating songwriting that has led fans to latch onto Nau since he arrived.

Tour support comes from The Saxophones. Alexi Erenkov’s duo The Saxophones create beautiful and personal music. Accompanied by his wife, Alison Alderdice, on percussion and samplers, they blend the darkness and melancholy of 1950s balladry with minimalistic woodwind arrangements, creating a hypnotic sound that hearkens to the past while affirming its place in the present.

This show is co-promotion with Now Wave.

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.

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When: 7.30pm on Wednesday 27 September 2017
Where: The Castle Hotel, 66 Oldham Street, Manchester M4 1LE

We’re delighted to be working with Melbourne’s Good Morning for the first time!

Good Morning are a two piece recording project made up of Stefan Blair (Gemini) and Liam Parsons (Aries) from Melbourne, Australia. The two met in high school and have been writing songs ever since. In 2013, they went halvies in a Foxtex 4 track tape machine; Good Morning is the result of that investment.

They have released two mildly received EPs, Shawcross and Glory, and some similarly received singles. In a live setting they are joined by James Macleod (Libra) and John Considine (Sagittarius). Together they have performed in the United States at CMJ Music Marathon and most of Australia.

Career highlights include being unfavourably compared to Mac DeMarco a lot, that time Urban Outfitters asked to play their music in stores and when Tyler, the Creator tweeted the cover of Shawcross.

This July, Melbourne-based independent label Bedroom Suck Records will re-issue these two beautifully produced and incredibly catchy records on one 12-inch vinyl package.

‘The slow tempo and gentle instrumentals are simply mesmerizing’ – The Fader

‘Evoking both the hazy, slacker tones of Captured Tracks superstar Mac DeMarco with the bittersweet bossa nova act Little Joy … layering sliding guitar ditties and mellifluous harmonies over fuzzy guitar strumming’ – SPIN

Local support comes from 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.

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.
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When: 7.30pm on Friday 29 September 2017
Where: The Eagle Inn, 19 Collier Street, Salford, M3 7DW

PLEASE NOTE: This show is completely sold out! Join the mailing list, above, for details of future Jen Cloher shows in Manchester.

We’re delighted to be working with Jen Cloher for the first time!

Acclaimed Australian singer-songwriter Jen Cloher has released her much anticipated self-titled album – her fourth.

By now you would have heard the singles – the raw and unflinching examination of Forgot Myself, and the melancholy sweep of Regional Echo – pointing towards Cloher’s unique way with a double edged lyric and serrated guitar chord. It’s certainly something critics have picked up on, with the album so far winning accolades from the likes of the Guardian, Observer, Loud and Quiet and more.

A letter in triplicate addressed to the themes of love, music and Australia, Jen Cloher is the culmination of a period of artistic and personal growth in which the artist took her rightful place as a punk-rock figurehead of Australia’s famous DIY music scene. She is an outspoken advocate for artist rights and co-founder of the incredible Milk! Records label, which includes the likes of Courtney Barnett and Fraser A. Gorman among its luminaries. Since 2013, Cloher’s output has been increasingly sharp-witted and poetic, with her last album, the critically lauded In Blood Memory representing an artistic apex for the artist and garnering her a prestigious Australian Music Prize nomination.

Released through Cloher and Barnett’s own label Milk! Records, Jen Cloher represents another quantum leap forward for the artist. Recorded amidst the rolling greenery of South-Eastern Australia and mixed at Jeff Tweedy’s famous Loft Studios in Chicago, the songs are split by Courtney Barnett’s extraordinary lead guitar and anchored by the rhythm section of Bones Sloane and Jen Sholakis. The end result is bold, assured, and piercingly observed, seeing Cloher face up to painful truths with unwavering honesty and emerge triumphant. On tracks like Analysis Paralysis and Shoegazers Cloher dissects the complacency of privilege, while on the stirring anthem-to-be Strong Woman she looks to her Maori heritage of women warriors, proud that her mother ‘wanted respect more than love’.

This is Cloher at her most incisive and witty, cutting and expressive, and represents possibly her most stunning body of work to date.

‘Her fourth and best album yet… incredible’ – The Guardian

‘Astonishingly candid… (she) tackles politics, equality and pride with frank intimacy’ – The Observer New Review

Tour support comes from Melbourne’s Cable Ties. Cable Ties are frenetic lead lines tethered to a hypnotic rhythm section. They take the three-minute punk burner and stretch it past breaking point. Suddenly the garage rock gives way as primitive boogie, kraut and post-punk take things way out to the horizon.

PLEASE NOTE: This show is completely sold out! Join the mailing list, above, for details of future Jen Cloher shows in Manchester.

Attend on: Facebook


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

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