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: Chew Magna... The Once... Irma Vep & Band... Odetta Hartman... The Wave Pictures... John Metcalfe... Beans on Toast... Poppy Ackroyd... Advance Base... Group Listening... Laura Gibson... Buke and Gase... Man of Moon... Mugstar... You Tell Me... Kristin Hersh... Tiny Ruins... CC Smugglers... Dan Mangan... Skinny Lister... Steve Gunn... Liela Moss... William the Conqueror... Otoboke Beaver... Simone Felice... Rozi Plain... Josh Rouse + Grant-Lee Phillips... The Unthanks... James Yorkston... Robert Forster & Band...

When: 7.30pm on Tuesday 26 February 2019
Where: The Castle Hotel, 66 Oldham Street, Manchester M4 1LE

We’re delighted to be presenting Group Listening’s headlining debut in the city!

PRAH Recordings is excited to present Group Listening, a new project by Stephen Black and Paul Jones. Clarinet & Piano: Selected Works Vol.1 is a collection of ambient works – from the likes of Brian Eno, Arthur Russell, Euros Childs and Robert Wyatt – arranged for clarinet and piano.

Having met at music college, Stephen and Paul went separate ways creatively. Stephen delved into pop, recording albums and touring extensively under the guise of Sweet Baboo, while working with Cate Le Bon, H. Hawkline and others. Paul leaned into the piano, pursuing a career as a jazz pianist and experimental musician. He played with Keith Tippett, formed the Jones O’Connor group, performed with noise improv bands and composed orchestral and chamber music.

Reconnecting years later, the pair discovered that their music tastes, bizarrely, met in the middle; they have a shared love of The Beach Boys, Ghost Box Records, Messiaen and Angela Morley. They both like ambient and new age music, bubblegum pop, Artie Shaw, Moondog and the outsider music handbook Songs in the Key of Z.

Clarinet & Piano: Selected Works Vol.1 is the spontaneous, beguiling culmination of this friendship. Cutting out post-production and keeping overdubs to a bare minimum, the pair passed their clarinet and piano through guitar stomp boxes and other analogue effects to enable processing and manipulation directly in performance. The result hums with the ghostly energy of sound pioneers Joe Meek and Martin Hannett, while mbira and drum machines are sparingly deployed amid enveloping folds of space echo.

Like Virginia Astley or Simon Jeffes, Group Listening tread the overlap between classical and experimental music. Perhaps most startling here is the breadth of material arranged as one atmospheric whole. The pieces range from the ever-spiralling, fractal phrases of German composer Roedelius to the haunting rasps of Hollywood and game soundtracker Disasterpeace, via the groundbreaking sonics of early electronic inventor Raymond Scott. Somehow, shot through Group Listening’s electro-acoustic lens, these works evolve into something supremely calming, poignant and new.

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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