Salford Music Festival 2016

Dear reader it’s that time again, the last week in September, when I wax lyrical about the utterly wonderful Salford Music Festival. . Now in its’ seventh year this grass roots, no nonsense event, is part of the musical life blood of the city in which I live. Often overshadowed, in entertainment terms at least, by our noisy neighbours in Manchester, this Festival plays a big part in redressing that imbalance and puts Salford firmly on the map, where it deserves to be.

The difference between any other festival that you might care to join in on is that it is absolutely free for punters, no wristbands, no overpriced beer or food, and no tents. Ed Blaney’s desire for the events to be free is a key driver for the popularity and success of the three day celebration of music. And the added benefit is there isn’t a tribute band in sight.

The Festival has been stripped back to three days this year, Thursday 29th September to Saturday October 1st, and centres around the Chapel Street/Blackfriars area close to Manchester City Centre, and the peoples republic of Eccles and the delightful village of Monton, just five minutes up the road from where I happen to live. This more compact and focused approach makes this years Festival feel more important and vibrant than ever.

And of course I have a direct interest in that I am looking after two nights at the Eagle Inn – Friday and Saturday.

So what can you expect?  Well all the gigs are listed on the Salford Music Festival website so I encourage you to go there, but here are a few of my highlights from the three days……

THURSDAY

The ultra talented Tamsin Middleton (Mr Heart) has a solo show at The Crescent at 8:30pm followed by ded.pixel and The Kingdom

The excellent Salford Arms has Duke and the Darlings, Wintergreen and Crimsons

Bobby Peru close the night at the always  excellent Wangies in Eccles with support from The Comics and Sioux.

FRIDAY

The beautiful Sacred Trinity Church is the main stage for a headline concert featuring local big new things Cabbage, the excellent Blaney, Sound of Thieves and Jess Kemp

The Eagle Inn has the first of two German Shepherd Nights with The Junta, Bouquet of Dead Crows, The Scissors and Kit B.

Highly regard all female trio Liines play The Crescent.

SATURDAY

The second German Shepherd stage at the Eagle features Taser Puppets, Poppcock, JD Meatyard and West Coast Sick Line.

Highly regarded Death to the Strange play The Crescent.

A packed day at the Salford Arms sees seven acts on between 5pm and closing time.

Milton Keys duo The Rusty G’s play Wangies.

Y Key Operators with guest bassist John “The Junta” Montague play the Blue Bell in Monton.

Here are some examples of what to expect over the weekend. I hope to see you at the Eagle for what promises to be an excellent weekend.

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Some things to look out for……

I’ve been hiding away at a Lancashire match for the last four days and inevitably a lot of things have come in while i’ve been out getting frozen……so here’s a round up of stuff in no particular order……

Tara Jane O’Neil plays the Castle, Oldham Street, Manchester on June 9th – this is from her album “Where Shine New Lights” which is very good……

The Reads have a new album out – they were in my top 30 singles of 2013 with Galaxy Egg – the album is called “Lost At Sea” and comes out in June – the lead track is called “Spitting Feathers

The legendary BL’AST play Star and Garter, Manchester on 25th June and the similarly legendary POISON IDEA play the same venue on 12th August

Death To The Strange are releasing a final cut from their EP – the very moreish “Openshaw Blues”

Recommended albums which are out now or due soon…….

NOMEANSNO – DANCE OF THE HEADLESS BOURGEOISIE (WRONG RECORDS) – re-issue

OUGHT – MORE THAN ANY OTHER DAY (CONSTELLATION)

THEE SILVER MT ZION MEMORIAL ORCHESTRA – HANG ON TO EACH OTHER EP (CONSTELLATION)

RUDIMENTARY PENI – DEATH CHURCH (OUTER HIMALAYAN/SOUTHERN) – re-issue (I don’t think the mix is as good as the original but it’s still an essential album)

USA OUT OF VIETNAM – CRASHING DISEASES AND INCURABLE AIRPLANES (AURORA BOREALIS)

HISS TRACTS – SHORTWAVE NIGHTS (CONSTELLATION) – out 12th May

TORCH RUNNER – COMMITTED TO THE GROUND CD RELEASE (SOUTHERN LORD) – out 12th May

FRIEDEMANN – UHR VS ZEIT (EXILE ON MAINSTREAM) – out 19th May

STEPHEN O’MALLEY, OREN AMBARCHI & RANDALL DUNN – SHADE THEMES FROM KAIROS (DRAG CITY) – out 19th May

NIGHTFELL – THE LIVING EVER MOURN (SOUTHERN LORD) – out 26th May

BUZZ OSBORNE – THIS MACHINE KILLS ARTISTS (IPECAC) – out 2nd June

AMENRA – LIVE II (MY PROUD MOUNTAIN) – out 30th June

WOLVES IN THE THRONE ROOM – CELESTITE (ARTEMISIA RECORDS) – out 7th July

and finally BORLAND are back with a preview track from their forthcoming album Omar

 

The Last New Music Show

I had the pleasure of standing in on the new music show on Salford City Radio for the last few weeks as I am leaving the station this week this is my last show……the music can be heard by following the links at Hour One and Hour Two below

The tunes played are

Hour One

  1. The Gin Circle – Just Watch Me (Reverbnation Artist Of The Week)
  2. Stalagmites – City Of Love (Local Artist Of The Week)
  3. Ninetails – Body Clock (Tip for the Top)
  4. Glass Heads – Derelict House
  5. This-Way Up – Disaster Street
  6. We Could Be Astronauts – Look Frank, It’s A Toaster!
  7. Electric Clowns – Yeah She Looks Alright
  8. Miss Lucid – Seduction of Solitude
  9. Dead Sea Souls – Trendsetter
  10. The  Gifted – Break
  11. Suzerain – Frenzy
  12. Limozine – Tokyo 1970
  13. Stalagmites – The Blue Rose
  1. Rapid Pig – To The Mountain
  2. This-Way Up – Animals
  3. Kotodama – Dichotomy
  4. We Could Be Astronauts – Astronaut Blue : Stop Including Me
  5. The Gin Circle  – Drink, Drugs & Prostitutes
  6. Ninetails – Rawdon Fever
  7. Maia – The Grandfather Plan
  8. Band of Skulls – You’re Not Pretty But You’ve Got It Going On……
  9. Mumiy Troll – Love Contraband
  10. Death to the Strange – Bandit
  11. Death to the Strange – Drink and the Devil
  12. The Outreach Project – Twisted Persona
  13. The Tapestry – Rode Your Luck
  14. Kill For Company – To Disappear
  15. Trojan Horse – When The Lights Go Down

Salford Music Scene – 28th February 2012

I was extremely pleased to get the OK from Ian “Moet” Moss to share with you four new studio recordings from Kill Pretty which were recorded at 6dB Studios a few weeks back – they give you another angle on this productive band and feature Mr Leigh and Mr Scanlon playing together for the first time since 1980. Also two further tracks from the excellent new EP from Taser Puppets “Twisted Pop”. You can see both of these bands with The Sexual Objects and Factory Star in a couple of weeks at Gullivers.

A full track listing is below – and you can listen in here

1 Kill Pretty Kill Pretty Album Sessions
2 Kill for Company Thoughts Loaded Like Bullets Singles
3 Hellbound Rebels Vulture Demo
4 Kill Pretty Rob A Bank Album Sessions
5 Toska Wilde and Luis Drayton I Am Kathy Kirby (AAAK Remix) Demo
6 Vei Surelines EP
7 Taser Puppets A Beautiful Song for the Ripper Twisted Pop
8 The Loaded Dice Love Hindsight of a Brand New Soul : Halo of Fireflies
9 Kill Pretty What About Me Album Sessions
10 The Darlings Stop and Go Monitor Mix
11 Death to the Strange Drink and the Devil Album Sessions
12 Kill Pretty The Year of 13 Moons Album Sessions
13 Taser Puppets Wasp Twisted Pop
14 The Fall Muzorewis Daughter Totales Turns

Music Diary #38 – Salford Music Scene 21st February 2012

Having been plagued with the lurgy for the last few days i’ve not had the energy to do much – main thing to report on is an excellent gig by Kill Pretty at the Shangri-La event at the Carlton Club in Prestwich last Friday Night. A most enjoyable set which ties in with a handful of new tunes sent my way by Mr Moss including the excellent new one “Year of 13 Moons”. Anyway here are a few snaps to show you what it was like……

Josh on the bass
Moet in Action

On other matters I have had a pile of new stuff but generally the lurgy means I have not had time to properly sort through it……however current recommendations for your listening pleasure include:

  • Hong Kong In the 60s – their most recent album (from last year) My Fantoms is rather excellent……
  • New York Dolls – Live From The Bowery – can they be the same without Johnny Thunders, Arthur Kane and Jerry Nolan? Probably not but Sylvain and Johansen manage to revisit the early debauched madness of the band.

And so to this weeks Salford Music Scene……some great new tunes from the local scene – the new EP by Taser Puppets is excellent, Easter are remarkable, and Jonn Deans new offering as Vei is spectacularly good. All the rest are rather stunning as well……

To listen in click here

1 Taser Puppets Broken Dolls Twisted Pop
2 Easter Damp Patch Damp Patch
3 Vei Internettiquette EP
4 The Brakes All Forgotten Demo
5 The Fiction Medicate The Greatest Hits EP
6 Rapid Pig Flight (Edit) Rehearsal Recording
7 Periscope Lifeboat Single
8 Cyril Snear Confabulation Four in Hand Two In Face
9 Death to the Strange Bandit Album Demos
10 The Brakes This Time Monday Demo
11 The Fiction Worlds Apart The Greatest Hits EP
12 Vei Faceplant EP
13 Taser Puppets Dim Twisted Pop
14 The Fall Totally Wired Live to Air In Melbourne

Music Diary #36 – 14th February 2012 plus Salford Music Scene Radio Show

I’d been concerned for some time that there was not enough new local stuff to play on this radio show – however things have improved of late and the selection on this weeks broadcast reflects a very healthy scene across Salford & Manchester and the surrounding boroughs (with a sideways trip to Margate to reflect a forthcoming extravaganza at the Crescent).

So the track listing for this show is – and you can listen here

1 Naked Veins Ride EP
2 The Kindest of Thieves Personal Best Ever The Optimist
3 Boomin Chocolate Demo
4 The Christophers Wisdom Single
5 Kingdom Lost Reverence Demos
6 The Fevers Dead Single
7 Death to the Strange Fill Up The Days Album Demos
8 The Kindest of Thieves Bones Ever The Optimist
9 Toska Wilde and Luis Drayton I Am Kathy Kirby EP
10 Naked Veins Second Nature EP
11 The Words Demons Single
12 The Words Siren Single
13 Stolen Mushrooms Miami Demos
14 The Fall Smile Perverted By Language

Music Diary #32 – 7th February 2012 and Salford Music Scene Radio Show

And since the last diary entry:

  1. The new Tim Berne album on ECM which is rather fine indeed – typical Berne performances however this time with a modicum of modal meandering which is perhaps more in keeping with his first leader role on the famous record lable.
  2. A couple of new tracks from the impressive Comet Sands  available here – tracks 1 and 2 are the new ones. And very fine they are as a well.
  3. The Christophers  are offering a free download of their new single “Wisdom” here – up to their usual standard I have to say. You can see them  live opening for Brooklyn based band The Static Jacks at `the Manchester Roadhouse on February 26th (sunday) from 7pm. For more info visit www.thechristophersmusic.co.uk
  4. Enjoying the Paper Tiger Illuminated EP on Mind on Fire – fascinating mix of styles.
  5. Impressed with the sound of Naked Veins from Swinton – just waiting for some tracks from the band.
  6. As reviewed elsewhere on the blog the new EP from The Kindest of Thieves is rather yummy.

Vis a vis this weeks Salford Music Scene show – the mix is as follows….and you can hear it here……

1 Mr Heart Boredoms Device The Hide
2 Kill for Company Black and White Demo
3 Whipcord Dread Stop Bop Whipcord
4 Solar Race Get Ahead Homespun
5 Kill Pretty Brown Eyes Live at Brixton Jamm
6 The Portlands Blue Sea Blues EP
7 Death to the Strange On the Clock Album Demos
8 Boomin Buckaroo Single
9 Kingdom Lost I Hope You See Demo
10 The Fiction Bragging Rights The Greatest Hits EP
11 Stolen Mushrooms Out of Zone Out of Zone
12 The Portlands Every Word I Sing EP
13 Kingdom Lost Better Than Life Demo
14 The Fall Deer Park Words of Expectation


Music Diary #29 – 31st January 2012 – Salford Music Scene Radio Show

Well as the month draws to a chilly end it’s worth reflecting on the first month of the calender year…….well over 50 new bands , whether demos, singles or albums have come my way in 31 days and that’s not counting the absolute dross I have had to reject on the grounds of public well-being taste and decency. That’s a dizzying amount of new music to absorb in the context of having lots of older stuff to recall and bring forward for consideration. On the most part things have been good and the standard, variety and uniqueness of the material is all very high indeed.

However having said that today’s listening has been somewhat marred by a pile of things which I will not even bother listing – awful in extremis…..somewhat rescued by….

My recommendation of the day which is:

  • Mark Lanegan Band – Blues Funeral : chap out of the “Screaming Trees” for those who know them, also “QOTSA” and “The Twilight Singers” amongst other things….his latest release is out next week and I have to say it’s rather fine indeed – dense and intense bluesy material which sort of sums up and concentrates into one excellent package the material he has produced over his previous six albums.

On this weeks Salford Music Scene…….to listen click here…only one deliberete error this time when I describe Novelty as being Dead Souls…..

Tone Puppets Late Nights Demo
Joy Division Novelty Plus/Minus
Death to the Strange Vertigo Dreams Demo Album Tracks
The Ascension Precipice Blood on The Rose
Humanizer A Fine Farewell Demo
Stolen Mushrooms Soulfly Out of Zone
Kingdom Lost Englands Grey Unpleasant Land Demo
Kit B Rock-Ola Rocket Demo
Long Hat Pins Already Stone Compilation Album
Tone Puppets All I Know Demo
The Ascension Useless Gift Blood on The Rose
Kill Pretty Happy Families Live at Brixton Jamm
The Fall 2×4 The Wonderful and Frightening World of

Music Diaries #20 – #23

Keeping these things up to date over the weekends is proving to be a little difficult due to other distractions – but as usual things have been piling up so this is by way of four days of ruminations.

Thea Gilmore appears to have a released a complete clone of “John Wesley Harding” last year which i’ve just got round to- never my favourite Dylan album (Blood on the Tracks in case you are interested) i’m not sure it works that well – seems to be more Springsteen than Dylan in its delivery. If you like that breathy folky stuff that appears to be all the vogue these days then no doubt you will have already acquired it and are enjoying, I’d much rather listen to ……

Kill Pretty  who made available a Soundcloud stream of their Brixton Jamm gig here  and rather fine it is too – looking forward to seeing them live this Thursday at the Kings Arms in sunny Salford. Sandells and Factory Star are also playing so it’s a bit a special night for me.

Death to the Strange also released some tracks from their long awaited album on Soundcloud here – not sure whether this will see the light of day due to line up changes but the material is excellent and demands attention.

Was pleasantly surprised by the airy art-pop sounds of Clinic who manage to combine a certain amount of scouse irony into their material. Just been perusing their 2010 album “Bubblegum” following a recommendation by a chum. I realise they have been around since 1997 but i’ve only just got to them.

The 25th anniversary re-release of The Residents “Heaven & Hell” as a two-CD set offers 44 tracks of the usual madness……only 300 made.

The posting of Womb’s  track from a gig in London “My Meat Is Bigger Than Yours” gives the opportunity to more closely listen to what they are about. I guess this is  improv in the traditional sense of the form  with a mantra like attention to the soundscape and the ditching of conventional “rock” structures to create work in the spirit of say Faust, and to some degree Gong – without the pixies and the flying tea-pots mind you. I like the way the insistent rhythmic core created a sort of structure for the guitars and the voice to weave in and out of. Not sure it’s something I could play on the radio but I like listening to it.

Irvin Mayfields “A Love Letter to New Orleans” came out last year – his seventh album and the next one along from his last release in 2008 – a relaxed affair, it offers both the Basin Street side of the city, along with a cooler Afro-Cuban feel. Mayfield is a great trumpet player and he makes his way round some great latino rhythms.