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: Matthew and the Atlas... Gratis: Makushin... Beans on Toast... Lightheaded + Mt. Misery... Jake Xerxes Fussell... Andrew Wasylyk & Tommy Perman... Cat Clyde... Charlie Parr... Mock Tudors... Dominie Hooper... Steve Wynn... Ryley Walker... Terry Reid... Chime School... The Courettes... Douglas Dare... Tusks... Rachael Lavelle... Roddy Woomble... Mikey Kenney... John Francis Flynn... Old Sea Brigade... Good News... Myriam Gendron... Rob Heron & The Tea Pad Orchestra... Tropical Fuck Storm... Kris Drever... Erland Cooper... Pokey LaFarge... Admiral Fallow... Skinny Lister... The Sheepdogs... The Unthanks in Winter... Emily Barker...

When: 7.30pm on Thursday 1 February 2024
Where: The Castle Hotel, 66 Oldham Street, Manchester M4 1LE

We’re delighted to be welcoming Novelty Island back – this time, to the Castle Hotel!

Novelty Island is the project of Liverpool-based songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and producer, Tom McConnell. McConnell grew up between Newcastle and Liverpool and takes inspiration from the pop music, surrealism and melancholy of the North.

After a series of psychedelic EPs, the debut Novelty Island album How Are You Coping With This Century? was released in Autumn 2021. It led to the Novelty Island live band performing at Glastonbury Festival and supporting Sea Power and The Pale White around the UK.

McConnell then turned to recordings he’d made at Abbey Road Studios and Damon Albarn’s Studio 13 for the second Novelty Island album, Wallsend Weekend Television. The album was released in March 2023 and followed by a 10-date UK headline tour.

Both Novelty Island albums have received five-star reviews from Shindig and R’n’R as well as support from Mojo, BBC Radio 6, BBC Introducing and Absolute Radio. McConnell also creates the surreal imagery around Novelty Island in the form of papier-mâché props, dreamy animations, claymation videos and a never-ending Instagram account.

Main support comes from J. Madden. J. Madden (James Madden) first drew praise as songwriter in off-kilter BBC 6 Music favourites Hooton Tennis Club. In 2020, with an abundance of time, Madden began bedroom recording and sowing the seed for the solo project that would become J. Madden. His debut album Same Day as Yesterday was self released in 2021 and pressed to 100 records. J. Madden returns in 2023 with cinematic single Dawn; his loungey ode to home.

Debris Discs will open the show. Debris Discs is the solo venture of former Coves & Caves/My Side of the Mountain member James Eary. Nestled up in the hills of the High Peak, James crafts homespun dreampop epics with an arsenal of dusty synths, drum machines, effects pedals and a trusty old telecaster. The debut album from Debris Discs, Post War Plans, is out now through AnalogueTrash records. Electronic Sound Magazine say the album is full of ‘shimmering, electronic anthems’, while Bandcamp’s New and Notable describe it as ‘spaced-out synthpop with a psychedelic edge’. For this show, James will be reimagining tracks from the album using live-looped guitar, synths, beats and bleeps.

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All shows are 18+ unless otherwise stated.