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: Ariel Sharratt & Mathias Kom... Giant Sand... Melanie Baker... Sophie Hutchings... Jerron Paxton... Ghostly Kisses... Sounds From The Other City 2024... Francis of Delirium... The Buffalo Skinners... The Handsome Family... Robbie Cavanagh... Memorial... His Lordship... Florry... Bad Bad Hats... Dana Gavanski... Caoilfhionn Rose... The Lovely Eggs... James Yorkston... Rain Parade... Matthew and the Atlas... Gratis: Makushin... Lightheaded + Mt. Misery... Andrew Wasylyk & Tommy Perman... Charlie Parr... Ryley Walker... Terry Reid... Erland Cooper...

When: 7.30pm on Thursday 27 April 2023
Where: Gullivers, 109 Oldham Street, Manchester, M4 1LW

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

Cindy are a band built around the singing and guitar playing of Karina Gill that she self-nurtured after finding an abandoned Squier Strat in her San Francisco apartment basement. Her intrigue soon grew into the band that is Cindy who have found a worldwide following of their slow-moving, dream-pop world that shrouds Gill’s songs thanks to support from model independent labels Mt. St. Mtn. [USA] and Tough Love Records [UK].

‘Everyone’s hoping that nobody sees/all our little efforts at dignity’

This last line of the title track from Cindy’s fourth LP Why Not Now? works as a slogan for Karina Gill’s evolving musical vision. Her music is simple out of necessity and introverted in delivery, but the songs contain vivid worlds and are quietly ambitious. With this latest batch, Gill pulled the process of making Cindy music even more inward. ‘Some of these songs were first recorded as demos alone in my basement. I think that process set the tone for the record… Maybe it set up a kind of starkness,’ she says.

Moving on from the fixed quartet that performed the first three albums, Gill worked alongside original keyboardist Aaron Diko to develop the songs and they enlisted players from the ever-blossoming SF pop scene to realise her minimalist vision – members of Flowertown, Telephone Numbers, April Magazine, Famous Mammals and Sad Eyed Beatniks to name a few. The collective sounds fill out the record perfectly with John Cale-esque viola on August, lo-fi fairground organs, and a tasteful full-band sound that crops up throughout.

A Trumpet on a Hillside is the most triumphant Cindy has ever sounded, all ascending chords and a wedding march melody tumbling out of an old synth. Still, some of the best moments are Gill alone, as on Playboy, just naked guitar and voice, and when the forlorn whistling solo kicks in, it feels like the loneliest star is imploding in a distant galaxy.

While the dream-pop tag is probably still relevant, this isn’t algorithm-fed genre ambience. Gill’s vocal/lyrical presence can be as gently momentous as Leonard Cohen or as intellectually potent as any ’79-’80 Rough Trade post-punk. ‘In writing a song,’ Gill says, ‘all the disparate parts of being me momentarily correspond, like car alarms and party music momentarily matching beats.’ Cindy’s Why Not Now? is that muffled street symphony inside a passing daydream.

Velvets minimalism with an evocatively British-style, introspective indie’ – MOJO

‘Others have mentioned Galaxie 500 in reference to this, but this is bleaker in tone, more quizzical, maybe closer to Low’s harrowing take on slowcore’ – Freeform Freakout

Local support comes from Test Card Girl. Test Card Girl is a solo project by independent synth-folk Manchester singer-songwriter Catherine Burgis who started writing songs in 2019 to escape a life of perpetual admin. Having spent a year as a musical comedian, travelling the country with a miniature Yamaha keyboard, Catherine won North West Comedian of the Year before re-purposing the tiny keyboard to write her first single Holds Me Down. The song featured on BBC 6 Music and Radio X, and she was named amongst Steve Lamacq’s ‘Ones to Watch’ in 2021.

Catherine received an Arts Council grant to record three more singles in 2021 and released her debut EP Fly in September 2022. The EP was recorded at Airtight Studios in Manchester and ranges from stripped back indie-folk songs to large-scale synth-pop singles featuring guest performances from drummer Andy Hargreaves (I Am Kloot) and bass player Nathan Sudders (Miles Kane, Guy Garvey, Nadine Shah). In January 2022 she was announced as one of ten Manchester International Festival Sounds Artists and longlisted for the Glastonbury Emerging Talent Competition. She’ll be touring the throughout 2023.

‘Life-affirming Mancunian electro-pop’ – Tom Robinson, BBC 6 Music

Buy tickets now. Tickets are also available from Dice.fmWeGotTickets.comTicketline.co.uk and on 0871 220 0260.

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All shows are 18+ unless otherwise stated.