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: Jean-Michel Blais... The Burning Hell... Sam Outlaw... The Weather Station... Tiny Ruins... Lithics... Mass Gothic... A Bingo Records Showcase... La Luz... Michael Nau... Horse Feathers... Haiku Salut... Wolfgang Flür... Mull Historical Society... Field Division... Ólafur Arnalds... The Sonics... BC Camplight... Terry Riley & Gyan Riley... The She Street Band... Milky Wimpshake... Dawn Landes... Halo Maud... Jo Passed... Easter... Eleanor Friedberger... William the Conqueror... Hater... The Lovely Eggs... HALEY... The Breath... Holy Moly & The Crackers... Kiran Leonard... Ryley Walker... Great Lake Swimmers... Lera Lynn... Saint Sister...

When: 8pm on Friday 20 July 2018
Where: Low Four, Old Granada Studios, Security Lodge Entrance, Quay Street, Manchester M3 4PR

PLEASE NOTE: This show now takes place at Low Four in Old Granada Studios. Please also note that there is no support act – with doors now opening at 8pm and Jean-Michel performing from 8.30pm. 

We’re delighted to be working with Canadian pianist and composer Jean-Michel Blais for the first time.

Dans ma main, the sophomore release by pianist and composer Jean-Michel Blais, is an expansive album of post-classical piano with strands of electronic detail. Blending his conservatory skill and precise pop sensibility with synthetic accompaniment, Blais creates unique environments where the piano’s intimacy can be subtly disrupted at any time.

Blais sets the stage with gentle, consonant album opener forteresse, a reversed cascade of high tones and accidental ambience. As he describes it, ‘The fortress is our pillow, our bed, our house, our city where we safely rest at night, allowing our mind to ramble, floating between consciousness and id, darkness and lucid dream.’

Largely composed in one week of open exploration, Blais comes closer to the improvisational source of his writing, painting impressionistic stories within the fluid, indefinite outlines of dreams. Dans ma main rolls like clouds of nostalgic fog blown away on a clear wind, at once recalling and signifying the end of Il, his critically acclaimed 2016 debut album.

By contrast, Il was written and recorded by Blais over two years, culled from rolls of accumulated experimentation into an enchanting, unignorable arrival. Il unearthed an unknown musical imagination, with overwhelmingly intimate compositions cloaked in the romantic din of Montreal city noise. The debut album would go on to amass 50 million streams worldwide, reaching #1 on Billboard’s Classical chart in Canada 14 times, and transforming audiences globally.

On Dans ma main, tempted by a tangent first explored on Cascades, his 2017 collaborative EP with Grammy-nominated electronic producer CFCF – born from a featured performance at 2016’s Red Bull Music Academy – Blais steps out with an artistic statement that both reaffirms and refutes his post-classical stature. The disparate universes within Dans ma main are so seamlessly entwined that they appear borderless.

Dans ma main weaves together expressive piano with austere synths in a double-helix of acoustic and electronic arpeggiation, tethering techno, industrial, ambient, and new age music to Blais’ solo piano essence.

The first single, roses, is a binary journey, softly oscillating between despair and hope. Oblique turns meet familiar resolve, as warm chords reference Radiohead’s Pyramid Song, and Eric Carmen / Celine Dion’s All By Myself, in sharp counterpoint to Rachmaninov’s Concerto No. 2 – an unexpected, but intentional cross-hatching of high- and low-art. Its emotional arc – optimistic and funereal – closes soundly with the glint of cinematic strings.

Growing up in rural Quebec, Blais began writing original compositions by age 11, and by 17 was invited to the Trois-Rivières Music Conservatory. However, the constraints of formal training drew Blais off this musical course, putting aside his piano until years later, settling in Montreal, he rediscovered his love.

The result, as Blais’ body of work unfurls, is the creation of a new musical forum where freshly sounded notes bounce back instantly with the magic and wisdom of shared space. Dans ma main captures but one moment of this infinite lineage, but with it comes the reminder of all the energy we hold in our own hands, in this moment.

AGE RESTRICTION: This show is 14+. Under 16s must be accompanied by an adult.

PLEASE NOTE: This show now takes place at Low Four in Old Granada Studios. Please also note that there is no support act – with doors now opening at 8pm and Jean-Michel performing from 8.30pm. 

Buy tickets now. Tickets are available from 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 Thursday 2 August 2018
Where: Soup Kitchen, 31-33 Spear Street, Manchester M1 1DF

We’re delighted to be welcoming The Burning Hell back – this time, to Soup Kitchen!

The Burning Hell is the alter-ego of Canadian songwriter Mathias Kom, and the band has been on the road in one form or another since 2007, playing everywhere from the chaos of Glastonbury to the loneliness of the Arctic Circle, popping up in bars, festival tents, living rooms, abandoned bunkers, and a mental asylum in rural France along the way. In its current formation, The Burning Hell has Mathias Kom joined by longtime collaborators Ariel Sharratt (bass clarinet, drums) and Darren Browne (bass guitar, bouzouki).

In the autumn of 2017, The Burning Hell released their eighth full-length album, Revival Beach, and embarked on a tour that took them from the Rocky Mountains to the Mountains of Mourne, across the Tyrrhenian and the Norwegian Seas, and many other places in between. Always restless, The Burning Hell looks forward to a year of new sounds, new songs, and new people to share them with.

They return this summer for a short run of UK dates, including this show at Soup Kitchen.

Opening the show is Helgi Clayton McClure. Helgi has been writing songs for ten years, always trying to flout traditional lyrical themes but sticking loyally to guitar-based instrumentation. Described variously as ‘the new Jake Thackray’ and ‘like a brownstone step – warm but with a hard edge’, his aim is always to entertain first and self-indulge later. Helgi has made close to 500 public appearances both in his own right and as a bass player and guitarist with various bands; these have included support slots with acts as diverse as Benjamin Francis Leftwich, Neville Staple and cellist Anne Müller. His finest hour came early, when in 2009 he was described live on BBC Radio 1 as ‘a bit of a music mogul – the ladies love it’.

Buy tickets now. Tickets are available from the bar (no booking fee), 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 8 August 2018
Where: The Deaf Institute, 135 Grosvenor Street, Manchester M1 7HE

We’re delighted to be bringing Sam Outlaw and his band back – this time, to the Deaf Institute!

Sam Outlaw – one of Los Angeles’s only modern country artists – has been riding high on the success of 2017’s sophomore LP, Tenderheart, his follow-up to the Ry Cooder-produced debut Angeleno, which raised the bar for West Coast country music.

Outlaw offers an extraordinary refinement of the artistic identity laid out on Angeleno. Sonically, the album elaborates on his ‘SoCal Country’ sound: a sun-bleached, Baja-influenced twang that deftly points to country’s neo-traditionalists and LA’s legendary singer-songwriters. Thematically, Tenderheart is a thesis on self-discovery and the power of love – from the cinematic mariachi-laced climax on opener Everyone’s Looking For Home, to the determined swagger on side-A highlight Trouble, to torch song showstopper Diamond Ring – Outlaw meditates on his own conflicted quest for peace amidst the chaos of his chosen path.

The 13-track collection of originals was recorded in the San Fernando Valley and co-produced by Outlaw alongside Martin Pradler. Outlaw enlisted many of the same musicians that made his first album, 2015’s Angeleno, an undisputed breakthrough and one of the best-reviewed debuts of that year: harmony singer Molly Jenson, pedal steel pro Jeremy Long and guitarist Danny Garcia, along with Taylor Goldsmith (Dawes) and Bo Koster (My Morning Jacket). In addition, Tenderheart features local mariachi group Erwin Vasquez and Mariachi Teocuitatlan.

Sam Outlaw has previously landed tours with Kacey Musgraves and Dwight Yoakam, performed on CBS Saturday Morning and last year won Americana Music Association’s prize for International Song Of The Year.

‘Angeleno made him a legitimate contender to be the biggest country star L.A. has produced since Dwight Yoakam’ – LA Weekly

‘An instant classic’ – NPR Music

Tour support coms from Molly Parden. Georgia may lay claim to Molly Parden, but her music carries us somewhere farther away – and closer to ourselves. Her 2011 release, Time Is Medicine, reveals beautifully crafted melodies and angelic refrains, enough to ensure the admiration of her Nashville peers and collaborators. Performing alongside her fellow crooners and fans, like Matthew Perryman Jones, her songwriting illuminates the intimacy and honesty of an artist who is beginning to define her stars and follow them even further than the reins of the Cumberland Plateau.

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

This show is a co-promotion with Please Please You.

Buy tickets now. Tickets are available from 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 Saturday 25 August 2018
Where: Gullivers, 109 Oldham Street, Manchester, M4 1LW

We’re delighted to be working with The Weather Station once again!

The Weather Station is the fourth – and most forthright – album by The Weather Station, the project of Toronto songwriter Tamara Lindeman. Her most fully realised statement to date, it is a work of profound urgency, artistic generosity and joy. Self-titled and self-produced, the album unearths a vital new energy from Lindeman’s acclaimed songwriting practice, marrying it to a bold new sense of confidence.

‘I wanted to make a rock and roll record,’ Lindeman explains, ‘but one that sounded how I wanted it to sound, which of course is nothing like rock and roll.’ The result is a spirited, frequently topical tour de force that declares its understated feminist politics, and its ambitious new sonic directions, from its first moments. On past records, Lindeman has been a master of economy. Here her precisely detailed prose-poem narratives remain as exquisitely wrought as ever, but they inhabit an idiosyncratic, sometimes disorderly, and often daring album that feels, and reads, like a collection of obliquely gut-punching short stories.

Her previous album Loyalty was recorded at La Frette Studios in France in the winter of 2014 with Afie Jurvanen (Bahamas) and Robbie Lackritz (Feist). Nominated for the 2015 Polaris Music Prize, it earned praise from the Guardian, Pitchfork, NPR Music, Uncut and MOJO, among many others, who celebrated its delicate, carefully worded verse, filled with double meanings, ambiguities, complex metaphors and rich details of the everyday.

Lindeman and her band have toured extensively in North America, Europe, Australia and Japan, both as a headliner and as support for artists such as The War on Drugs, The Mountain Goats, Damien Jurado, Bahamas and Basia Bulat.

‘Timeless… Measured, perceptive storytelling. A singer with an unmistakable & communicative voice, able to convey hope & hurt with equal clarity’ – Pitchfork

‘She writes literate songs with unusual precision & sings them in an understated, open-hearted way that lends good poetry the directness of conversation’ – Uncut

This show is a co-promotion with Now Wave.

Buy tickets now. Tickets are available from the bar (no booking fee), 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 Tuesday 28 August 2018
Where: Gullivers, 109 Oldham Street, Manchester, M4 1LW

We’re delighted to be working with Tiny Ruins again!

Tiny Ruins are a band based in Auckland, New Zealand. Conceived in 2009 by songwriter Hollie Fullbrook to describe her solo output, the group now includes Cass Basil on bass, Alex Freer on drums and Tom Healy on electric guitar. Traversing early influences of folk and blues, Tiny Ruins’ sound draws on ethereal and grungy soundscapes alike. Sometimes likened to Nick Drake, Mazzy Star or Nico, Fullbrook’s voice and guitar work evades cliché, making use of alternate tunings by way of her own self-styled fingerpicking. Lyrically one of a kind, stories are laced with a dark humour that is at times disarmingly confessional,  at others, cryptic and philosophical.

Fullbrook was born in Bristol, England, before moving to New Zealand with her family at the age of ten and settling in West Auckland. She learnt the cello from a young age, picking the guitar up and writing songs from her early teenage years. Asked to support Alasdair Roberts in Sydney, May 2010, she was soon signed to Australian indie label Spunk Records on the strength of some demos. Tiny Ruins’ debut Some Were Meant for Sea was released in 2011 and saw critical praise for its minimalist approach and lyrical flair. Recorded by Fullbrook and producer Greg ‘J’ Walker (Machine Translations) in a small hall in South Gippsland, the album was voted 2011’s Album of the Year by BBC World Service arts and culture programme ‘World of Music’ and was a finalist for New Zealand’s Taite Prize in 2012. Tours of New Zealand, Australia and Europe followed, with Fullbrook performing solo, and later as a duo with Cass Basil on upright bass, supporting The Handsome Family throughout the UK.

Joining forces with drummer Alex Freer, Tiny Ruins evolved into a three-piece, recording a bluesy EP, Haunts, together in the Waipu bush, before working with Tom Healy at The Lab in Auckland on their second album, Brightly Painted One. Championed by the New York Times, NPR and David Lynch, it won Best Alternative Album at the New Zealand Music Awards in 2014, and saw a joint release by labels Bella Union, Spunk Records and Flying Nun.

Tiny Ruins have undertaken several international headlining tours, both in a solo capacity and as a band, opening for Calexico on their 2013 Australasian tour, Sharon Van Etten across the USA in 2014, and an eclectic array of opening slots, from Beach House, Joanna Newsom and Father John Misty to Neil Finn, Ryan Adams and Leon Bridges.

Most recently, Fullbrook has collaborated with drummer Hamish Kilgour of The Clean. An EP recorded in Brooklyn with producer Gary Olson, Hurtling Through, was released in November 2015, featuring two poems by W.B.Yeats set to music. The band are currently working on their third album.

‘Haunting melodies and deeply involved lyricism [mark] Tiny Ruins as one of the best acts to harness the power of dark folk…Expansive, experimental and exciting’ – Hhhhappy

Buy tickets now. Tickets are available from the bar (no booking fee), 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 Saturday 8 September 2018
Where: The Eagle Inn, 19 Collier Street, Salford, M3 7DW

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

Featuring 12 tightly wound fragments of brittle abstract twin guitar, impellent rhythm, and absurd, imagistic lyricism, Mating Surfaces is the second full length from Portland, Oregon’s Lithics – out now on Kill Rock Stars.

Lithics exist in a nervous fragmented world, a propulsive futuristic hell where anything can be consumed at any time, where any sound from any era can be conjured and reproduced and yet most of what we are stuck with seems like a trite reproduction of a sentiment long lost. Lithics fight this impossible dreary reality with a bold minimalist vision, Can I be myself? A stern danceable sound that summons cut up snapshots of Su Tissue and Mark E Smith, an imagined landscape where Captain Beefheart hits that 99 Records Too Many Creeps beat.

This is the sound of possibility. A total collaborative vision: Aubrey Hornor’s stark stilted vocals intoning over her and Mason Crumley’s wired guitar parts, like lightbulb flashes and the whir of insects unspooled and playing off each other. Bob Desaulniers’ basslines give both structure and dissonance to the endeavour, and along with Wiley Hickson on drums, this is a rhythm section recalling art damaged yet danceable noise made in the detritus of failing cities in the late 70s/early 80s (The Lower East Side, Cleveland, Manchester…). Except Lithics is happening now, a continuing part of the vital art punk DIY underground in Portland, Oregon.

Lithics create a world that seems like it is collapsing as it’s being built. Mating Surfaces is an unnerving sound, total in its commitment to a specific vision, DIY minimalist art punk that speaks to the fact that whenever someone says the underground is dead it just demonstrates that they are just too past it to know any better.

Biography by Layla Gibbon (Maximum Rocknroll, Skinned Teen)

Local support comes from Handle – a new project featuring members of D.U.D.S. and B.E.T.H, offering post-minimal pre-sloppy Latin functional proto-samba. Handle’s EP comes out soon on Absolute Fiction.

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

Buy tickets now. Tickets are available from Vinyl Exchange, Ticketline.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 Thursday 13 September 2018
Where: The Castle Hotel, 66 Oldham Street, Manchester M4 1LE

We’re delighted to be working with Sub Pop’s Mass Gothic for the first time!

Even when you’re married and you’re best friends and you’ve spent a lifetime (18 years is a lifetime, right?) collaborating with each other, it’s not often obvious what’s staring you right in the face. I’ve Tortured You Long Enough is the tongue-in-cheek title of Mass Gothic‘s second album for this reason, among several others. Husband/Wife duo Noel Heroux and Jessica Zambri have always dipped in and out of each other’s creative spaces, advising on their respective outputs and supporting one another. But never had they before completely committed to doing an entire album as a duo, sharing an equal load. The time had come. And thank goodness. They have dreamed up a record packed with the tension, chaos and beauty of a fluid and cathartic two-way conversation. In a universe increasingly threatening our abilities to work hard on communication and coexistence, their creative union isn’t just inspired but important. ‘Why did it take us so long?’ laughs Heroux from their home in Queens, New York.

When Heroux put out 2016’s self-titled Mass Gothic record, he was necessarily doing so as a solo entity. Mass Gothic was born as a necessary project for his workings following the aftermath of Hooray For Earth’s end. Plagued by his own insecurities and anxieties, Heroux wasn’t yet ready to deal with putting his trust and confidence into another shared project. He wasn’t in a place to take on the burden of those responsibilities with another individual, especially not an individual so fundamental to his existence. So what changed? He can’t exactly pinpoint when the phrase I’ve Tortured You Long Enough came to him. It was before a single song of this record was written. But it became a mantra, almost a premonition. ‘It just popped into my head,’ explains Heroux. ‘You can say it to a loved one, or to a friend. Or you could wish someone say it to you. It covers so many bases but it’s taken on extra meaning in the past couple of years while everybody is at each other’s throats; frustrated and confused all the time.’

The most important application of the phrase, however, was upon Heroux himself. He had tortured his own psyche long enough, and was particularly in need of forcing himself out of his comfort zone and letting go of that prior stubbornness. ‘I’ve struggled greatly with telling myself that I can’t do things, or that things aren’t good enough,’ he says. Then in the autumn of 2016 circumstances led him to face his biggest fears head on, because he physically had no other choice. ‘We rented a small tiny cabin in the middle of nowhere in upstate New York. We put ourselves away and worked on music all day, wondering what it would feel and sound like,’ explains Zambri.

It began with Zambri penning the first iterations of Keep On Dying, a synth-laden call-to-arms that recalls the frantic energy of Animal Collective and the celestial torch-bearing of Bat For Lashes. Zambri had the melody and lyrics, and Noel arranged the chords to finish the song. Then things started snowballing. While the writing may have begun in New York, it relocated to LA while their lives became totally in flux. They threw caution to the wind last January and got rid of their Brooklyn apartment. Not only that, they also purged all their belongings, except the bare bones for making an album: instruments and recording equipment.

They bought a car and lived out of a duffle bag of clothes for an entire year. They drove to LA, lived with their co-producer Josh Ascalon, and wrote and wrote and wrote. ‘The entire record from start to finish was done without having our own place to live,’ marvels Heroux now. ‘Maybe we wouldn’t have been able to do it if we were anchored at home. We were forced into it. Jess was trying to open me up and if we could have just sat on a couch and thrown on the TV it probably wouldn’t have worked.’

The partnership has distinctly evolved the project’s sound. Mass Gothic was a far more diverse debut, and as the most successful debuts do it was just Heroux by himself, throwing a hundred different ideas at the wall. He describes it now as ‘the hellish sounds’ of his own brain. Its follow-up therefore is a far more intentional meeting-of-minds. Their openness to work with one another had to come without rules as neither of them could afford to hold back.

Last Spring, for instance, when they thought they’d done all the work and had a fully mixed album, they realised separately that it had way more potential. While they were preparing to go on tour with Zambri’s sister, Cristi Jo, and her sister’s boyfriend Joseph Stickney, Heroux woke up one morning, turned to Zambri and said: ‘Oh god, we have to fucking re-record the whole album.’ The rehearsals were the equivalent of pre-records, and they knew the tracks could accomplish so much more. Although he was afraid to say it out loud, they both agreed it was what was required.

The final ten days took place in the studio in Brooklyn where they laid it down from start to finish with Rick Kwan (Chris Coady mixed the record and Heba Kadry mastered it). “’t was too pristine before,’ says Zambri. ‘We wanted it to be perfect but it wasn’t breathing. Even if there would be tension, we wanted it to flow like water.’ On that front they’ve achieved a remarkable arc. Bookended by the tracks Dark Window and Big Window, it begins from a place of uncertainty, overwhelming disquiet and self-doubt, and it works towards a feeling greater than the individual. Via an optimistic number of romantic love songs (Call Me, J.Z.O.K., How I Love You) the record basks in the acceptance of co-dependence. Even though the works are intensive, there’s an element of ease to their overall message. The chords and beats may feel squeezed and claustrophobic at times, but expansive guitar tones and electronics allow the listener to deep dive into a chasm of potential.

‘Overall it’s a conversation between the two of us,’ explains Zambri. It isn’t autobiographical to the point of alienating its listener though. It’s important that the songs provoke. It’s a record that concludes with the comfort in knowing that you can be both independent and successful in a relationship, which speaks quite literally of the pairs’ experience giving in to this process with one another.

Written by Eve Barlow

Buy tickets now. Tickets are available from the bar (no booking fee), 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 14 September 2018
Where: Gullivers, 109 Oldham Street, Manchester, M4 1LW

After having an extremely fun time at the sell out Manchester showcase at the Castle Hotel in March, Bingo Records is bringing its roster back, this time in a bigger venue.

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 has spent most of this year touring with The Lovely Eggs, and his next EP – Happy Shopper – has been played a great deal on 6 music. It comes out in July.

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.

His debut album, ‘Dumbo’ is due for release this summer and sees Sun Drift at their most expansive and experimental.

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.’

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 released the new album Confetti on Bingo Records in March.

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

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

When: 7pm on Monday 24 September 2018
Where: Soup Kitchen, 31-33 Spear Street, Manchester M1 1DF

We’re delighted to be promoting La Luz’s biggest Manchester show to date – with guests Peggy Sue!

Los Angeles has often been described as a ‘dream factory’–both a mecca where dreamers converge to pursue long-held aspirations, and a topography of hallucinogenic contradictions: enchanting tangerine sunsets diffused by smog, crystal-clutching spiritualists mingling with deep-pocketed narcissists, rows of scenic palms competing with garish billboards for commuters’ attention.

It was against this backdrop that the four members of La Luz – singer/guitarist Shana Cleveland, drummer Marian Li Pino, keyboardist Alice Sandahl, and bassist Lena Simon – conceived of Floating Features, the band’s third studio album. For this, their most ambitious release yet, La Luz consulted landscapes both physical and psychological.

References to dreams abound on Floating Features. Loose Teeth catalyses nightmare fuel into a propulsive, intentionally disorienting collision of honeyed harmonies and Takeshi Terauchi-esque jetstreams of distorted surf guitar. Mean Dream unsurprisingly mines dreamstate imagery, and the lyrics and melody for Walking Into the Sun actually came to Cleveland during a particularly vivid night of deep sleep. Looming over the album’s coterie of surreal figures (gargantuan cicadas, a monstrous Creature, The Sun King, aliens, the titular Lonely Dozer) is the magnificent Greed Machine, a skulking, insatiable engine of consumption – Nathanael West’s ‘business of dreams’ fearsomely manifested.

To bring these visions to stereophonic life, La Luz pivoted from the DIY trailer-park brio of It’s Alive and the gritted-up urgency of Weirdo Shrine toward lush, hi-fidelity production value. Li Pino’s drums have never sounded more thunderously muscular, Simon’s basslines more robust-yet-agile, Sandahl’s organ melodies more complementary, Cleveland’s layers of guitar more versatile, or the group’s trademark harmonies more bewitching and rapturous. For every one of Floating Features’ seismic crescendos, there are just as many small, evocative details colouring its somnambulist soundscape.

Only La Luz could conjure up Floating Features’ Leone-on-LSD vibes, and the album finds the L.A. band at the height of their powers – golden rebels in a golden dream.

Tour support comes from Peggy Sue. Peggy Sue are London-via-Brighton indie duo Rosa Slade and Katy Young. Founded in 2007, the band have released three albums on Wichita Recordings, culminating in 2014’s critically acclaimed Choir Of Echoes, and toured with the likes of Jack White, Local Natives and First Aid Kit.

Slow Fade is the first single from Peggy Sue’s upcoming fourth album (due 2018) After a three year break – during which Rosa Slade and Katy Young have been performing with all-female singing group Deep Throat Choir – Slow Fade is an apt comeback; a melancholy celebration of patience. It is a dreamy breakup song, one that lets you hang around lazily in the days when you aren’t ok yet. The single – and upcoming album- borrow in equal parts from the perfectly constructed pop songs of the 1960s and the understated, noisy guitar experiments of 90s indie bands such as The Breeders and Blur. The new material sees frontwomen Slade and Young joined by Dan Blackett (Landshapes) on drums and Benjamin Gregory (GRIP TIGHT) on bass who bring an fresh energy and clarity to the band’s enduringly captivating duel vocals.

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

Buy tickets now. Tickets are available from the bar (no booking fee), 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 Tuesday 25 September 2018
Where: Gullivers, 109 Oldham Street, Manchester, M4 1LW

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

Michael Nau will release his new, full band album Michael Nau & The Mighty Thread through Full Time Hobby on 3 August. Michael Nau & The Mighty Thread is the follow-up to last year’s critically acclaimed album Some Twist and its extension The Load EP. The band, who have confirmed a string of UK shows in September, have unveiled the first track from the album, Less Than Positive.

‘There was a musical language that we created; something without a guiding pattern that you could really just jump into and see where things could go,’ Michael Nau says of the process of recording Michael Nau & The Mighty Thread. He’s wildly poetic, especially when recounting his dedication to music, and the work that led to this particular collection of delicately passionate songs. ‘These things became the vehicle by which we traveled, giving us reason to spend most of our lives in a van of uncertainty.’

The sprawling new album was recorded in guitarist Benny Yurco’s one-bedroom apartment in downtown Burlington, Vermont. Nau and his collaborators had a cool little set up going in Yurco’s spot — drums and bass took over the bedroom, the guitar amp in the bathroom, Nau’s vocals and piano in the living room, and a vibraphone in the kitchen. It’s the first time one of Nau’s records happened all in one place, and ‘it feels most like a band record than ever before’. Nau and this particular group of musicians held it down together as a true team, which is why Nau named the record in their honour.

The songs on this layered record sound sunny and familiar, like sharing stories and worries with a close friend on a late summer day. In a gorgeous and natural way, he contemplates his own process, those feelings of uncertainty. ‘Making it too hard just comes easier,’ Nau croons on Funny In Real Life, an exquisite meditation on creation and self. ‘Truth is such a beautiful force/And every time we find the chorus/There’s no second-guessing the real/I don’t ever know how I feel.’

Nau shines when he’s nestled in that medium between melancholy and carefree. He seems to be thinking about the past, present, and future, all at the same time, and his songs move between pain and joy, fires and rivers, faraway stars, icy Saturdays, clouds of smoke, between shelter and flowers in the rain. ‘And it just keeps going, if it’s done it’s done/Still flow in the flowing, all around the sun,’ he sings on Smudge, the record’s finale, which is about love, and memories, and loneliness, and apprehension — ‘Something coming around some bend/Waiting for something to never end’ — all at once. It’s all just part of the waves of life; sometimes you get stuck, or things move slower, and sometimes the pace steps up. And that seems to be the gist of Michael Nau & The Mighty Thread — that there are ‘different movements’ in the self, that constantly figuring yourself out is all part of the journey. As long as love is the motion,’ Nau says, ‘it might get there.’ Wherever ‘there’ is.

‘Stoner gorgeousness… lingers in the mind long after it’s ended’ – Mojo

‘A master of melodic understatement’ – Uncut

‘Nau’s songs recall Fred Neill, Nilsson and early Hawley, spinning fugs of melodious sound via echo, distortion and tremolo’ – Q

This show is a co-promotion with Now Wave.

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

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