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Upcoming shows: Rain Parade... Matthew and the Atlas... Gratis: Makushin... 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... John Francis Flynn... Old Sea Brigade... Myriam Gendron... Rob Heron & The Tea Pad Orchestra... Kris Drever... Erland Cooper... Pokey LaFarge... Admiral Fallow... Skinny Lister... The Sheepdogs... The Unthanks in Winter... Emily Barker...

When: 7.30pm on Wednesday 2 November 2022
Where: Gullivers, 109 Oldham Street, Manchester, M4 1LW

We’re excited to be bringing Wesley Gonzalez back to Manchester – this time to Gullivers!

When it comes to songwriting, Wesley Gonzalez has always been a rule maker. There’s always been a plan for each album, right back to when he was a teenager, through his tenure as leader of Let’s Wrestle and over two critically lauded solo albums that translated his undeniable pop smarts from the scuzz of rough lo-fi to the rich production of mid-70s soul and funk. When it came to writing his latest record Wax Limousine, however, Gonzalez had grown tired of rules.

‘This new album was a process of letting it come out naturally, there was no ‘plan’ for what this was supposed to be,’ Gonzalez says. ‘It was a brilliant experience to just write with no pretence at all and to not worry about something fitting a certain musical narrative. The lyrical themes are the connective tissue of the record which came about organically from life experience rather than something altogether more conceptual.’

That’s not to say that the songwriter has left his penchant for an earworm hook behind. He is, after all, the sort of artist who possesses the rare knack of naturally being able to bring things back to the centre no matter how far leftfield he goes, and Wax Limousine is resplendent with the sort of snappy melodies that have long been a hallmark of his writing no matter what style he pushes himself towards. Largely put together with the help of his bandmates, Joe Chilton (bass), Jack Bleckinsop (drums) and Callum Duffy (piano/synths) between home and socially-distanced studio time – with additional mixing from Jamie Neville at Teeth Studios – Wax Limousine is in a lot ways what you might expect of a Wesley Gonzalez record: unflinching, at times acerbic but wound around irresistible pop motifs.

However, on this third studio album of his there’s the undeniable sense of an artist letting go, pushing away the barriers and pushing himself to seek out new terrains. It’s a record that showcases an artist who, despite the personal sadness he’s had to document across these tracks, perhaps feels more at peace with himself than ever before.

Support comes from Reuben’s Daughters. An artist of a region where alternative-pop is like a second religion, Reuben Myles Tyghe, aka Reuben’s Daughters has been evolving for almost two decades at the heart of the local independent scene in the South West of England. In 2022, Reuben wrote a new chapter in his musical history, with a debut album, under the name Reuben’s Daughters. A sunnier, more catchy and even pleasantly heady chapter. Mami Wata, like the African goddess of the same name, immediately seduces by her brilliance. The album is an adventure with psychedelic and hopping tones of which Reuben and a few conscripts have the secret.

His ‘daughters’ accompany on the stage, in the studio and with all creative elements. Behind this nickname, both intimate and affectionate, hide the pillars of a rock-solid pop architecture. Musicians, producers, photographers, directors, designers who are the precious artisans collaborating on an energetic record to which everyone contributes. A collective at the service of the song, a hive of creators whose harmonious buzz is heard from the first notes and then slides throughout an album that can be alternately catchy or exploratory. Mami Wata was released 1 April 2022 via French label Microcultures Records to world-wide acclaim, with lead singles playlisted on French national radio station FIP and plays on BBC 6 Music courtesy of Steve Lamacq.

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.