Category Archives: introducing …

New favourite band: Crucial Features

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Crucial Features are a “riot grrrl inspired” band from Vilnius, Lithuania –  FFO Petrol Girls, Downtown Boys and Pussy Riot. They’ve just released their debut EP, ‘Kaprizai’ (“Caprices”), and it’s awesome. Have a listen:

The band say the EP:

“deals with the absurd mindset of the ones who believe that emotionally violent topics are not dialogue worthy.”

The all-girl trio formed in 2016, in response to the lack of female role models in the Lithuanian music scene. Right after releasing their debut single ‘Miršta Sovietynas’ (“Dying Sovietism”), the band provoked plenty of serious discussions about the socially and culturally damaging heritage of the Soviet era.

Fast, full of rage and sincere cynicism driven by catchy riffs, dynamic vocals and vigorous drums, the band continues paving their way to confront social issues, inequality and stereotypes of post-soviet Lithuanian society. We want to see them in London as soon as their legs can carry them here!


Find Crucial Features on:

Bandcamp

YouTube

Facebook

Instagram

 

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Casey Tufnell – 10 question interview

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Casey Tufnell is a an awesome protest folk-punk musician, and they're coming to play a LOUD WOMEN show on 9 June at the Hope & Anchor! To get to know Casey a bit better, we asked them our 10 questions ...

1. Who would you most like to cover one of your songs?
A member of public on the other side of the world. This is because success to me is reaching as many people as possible with my music and to have someone on the other side of the world cover one of my songs would show the expanse of my music. “GLOBAL TAKEOVER” (haha, just kidding.)

2. If you could add one member to your band – any person, living or dead, musical or otherwise – who would it be, and what would they play?
Nai Palm from Hiatus Kaiyote. She is so talented, I love her style of music and writing and would love to work with her.

3. What was the last song you wrote, where were you when you came up with the idea, what inspired it, and how did it turn out?
The last new song of mine doesn’t have a title. I was playing at an open-mic night in SE London and I do improvisations in my set. The inspiration was literally the audience: I ask them to shout out random words (objects, emotions, whatever is on their mind at that point in time). I think people loved it! I think the audience love to be included in the making of something, which is what I find really special.

4. Which was your favourite gig you’ve a) played and b) watched?
My favourite gig I’ve played is probably the International Animal Rights Conference in Luxembourg 2017. My favourite gig that I’ve watched would be Petrol Girls at Loud Women fest, I was going through something personal and their songs resonated with me so much it brought me to tears!

5. Recommend a record and a book that you think our readers might not have heard of.
Steve Lacy – Dark Red. I recommend this record (and music video) because it was all made on garage band on an iPhone using an iRig to record the guitar. Its genius and just shows that you don’t have to have the fancy equipment to make amazing music. The music video was all filmed on an iPhone as well. Pure and raw talent, I love that.

Jeff Garvin – Symptoms of Being Human. This book is the first time I was able to connect to any character fully. The protagonist is a gender-fluid person and really helped me normalise my gender, show me that it’s okay to identify as non-binary and that there are other people out there like me. Representation is so important, this is also what fuels me on with my music.

6. What’s your best piece of advice for young musicians?
Do it. Don’t listen to the adults telling you to be ‘realistic’. Take risks. And most importantly: tell those creepy men to fuck off if they tell you they can get you gigs in return for a sexual favour. You deserve way more than them.

7. Your top 3 most beloved albums ever – go. 

Choose Your Weapon – Hiatus Kaiyote

Update Your Brain – The Tuts

New Amerykah Part Two: Return Of The Ankh – Erykah Badu

8. What are your musical goals?
To always keep exploring with genres, I’m the kind of person that can’t stick to one thing – and I often question whether or not that’s positive or negative I’ve decided to not think of things that way anymore. I wouldn’t like to get to a point with writing music where it feels like a chore, so keep on exploring sounds would be my first goal.

Another goal is to play. To play as much as possible, get more people listening to my music. I’m still quite new but I know what I need to do.

Also get merch and proper branding. I’m D.I.Y, so I’m learning a lot on the way, but I’m enjoying it!

9. Give your top 5 contemporary bands/musicians. 

Hiatuis Kaiyote

The Tuts

Erykah Badu

Steve Lacy

Peter and Kerry


Catch Casey Tufnell when she plays LOUD WOMEN on 9 June at the Hope & Anchor, with Think Pretty and Charismatic Megafauna.
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track of the day: RUEN drops ‘Bad Behaviour’

RUEN Promo 2Rhiannon Mair is an awesome and in-demand producer, working with artists including Laura Marling, Port Erin, Kimberly Anne and Emma McGrath. She is also a talented pop artist in her own right, making her own music as RUEN. Her new single ‘Bad Behaviour’ is out today – check it out here.

 

Rhiannon says:

“The song was inspired by being close to someone in an abusive relationship. Witnessing the negative cycle of going back again and again after being repeatedly hurt. It’s as if they were becoming addicted to the abusers bad behaviour.”

 

Ruen_Bad_Behaviour_Single_ArtworkNEXT LIVE SHOW  3 JULY 2018 at THE FINSBURY

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BARQ: in her own words

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 Introducing Dublin's BARQ, whose double A-side Sassy Mouth / Earthquakes is out now. Lead singer Jess Kav told us about it in her own words.

“Sassy Mouth” has been the most vocal I have been in lyrical content about the social change happening in Ireland and the world right now. Our world currently feels like its experiencing a tumultuous time where healthy debate is not always prioritised. Instead, we end up in black-and-white echo chambers unable to show empathy with ideologies that don’t fit our world view.

To feel anger is natural, which people can sense within our song. In “Sassy Mouth”, I discuss ideas about bodily autonomy, that we make reality, but we also have the power to break and change that reality. It is in our power. In the second verse I list multiple archetypes used to reduce the female identity. I go on to remind us that these are all ways to demean our roles. We are not just a “bossy bitch” or a “siren” or some enigmatic meta-human, we are multi faceted individuals with hopes and dreams for ourselves and for society as a whole. Inherently we all want to live in a place that feels safe and accepting. “Sassy Mouth”, in a way, is an anti-shit-slinging hadouken, intended to remind us all that we can overcome the bullshit and move forward with strength and compassion.

 

Hayley Chillcott talks us through her EP, ‘Finally Home’

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Hayley Chillcott is a singer-songwriter from Bristol, living in Brighton, and she's releasing her debut EP 'Finally Home' on 20 April 2018, with an EP launch gig the night before. We've heard it, and it's awesome. So we asked Hayley herself to talk us through each of the tracks, and she kindly obliged!

 

Track 1: Circles
Circles is a song I wrote two years ago in my first year of university. It’s based around the idea of meeting someone and having a brief relationship whilst caught up in the whole ‘uni lifestyle’, and how the whole experience can be overwhelming. You tend to make decisions that are centred around this new life you’re starting to lead even if they aren’t the best.

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The lyrics are some of the most honest I have written, with lines like “you don’t know me, I don’t understand where we’re at”. I had the idea of writing a really ambient song and playing it on my electric guitar which isn’t something I do often. I came up with an atmospheric guitar riff; then the vocal melody and the lyrics seemed to fall together after that.
When it came to recording this track I felt like it was the one we could have the most fun with. Although I had a vision of what I wanted it to sound like I wasn’t necessarily sure of the exact journey we would need to take to get there. After laying down my guitar and vocals we toyed around with ideas and it ended up being exactly what I envisioned.
Track 2: Better Off That Way
I wrote Better Off That Way about a year ago, unlike the other tracks on the EP this song isn’t entirely personal. The song is about being in a relationship and reaching a stage where you both aren’t happy and decide to accept your fate. I originally had the idea of it being a happy, sweet song but it actually ended up being quite sad!
The lyrics describe how it feels to be the person on the other end of the break up I guess, knowing that the other person is falling out of love with you. There was also some frustration to the other person with lines like “you’ve got me falling out of line, trying all the time and running out of words to say”.
In terms of the recording of this track I already knew that I wanted this song to remain acoustic for the EP. I feel like it’s such a personal and intimate one that if I were to start adding other instruments it would take away from that. It was really lovely to just sit and play the song as if I were playing a gig and I feel like you really get that vibe from the recording.
Track 3 – A Lot Like Home
A Lot Like Home was written most recently; it tells a story of where I am at right now. I wanted to write a song that was happy and left people feeling uplifted and reflecting on the good things in life.
Hayley Chillcott 001Weirdly the title to this track came first. It’s about feeling at peace with everything and finding ‘home’ in a person rather than a place. I’ve always loved the idea that if you were with the right person it wouldn’t matter where you were, because you could always potentially feel at home. Therefore it felt great that i was able to portray that message in the lyrics for this song.
When it came to recording this track I knew that I wanted it to have a much fuller sound. Working with a full band is something that I have always wanted to do and it definitely pushed me to work harder and learn new things. I don’t have a favourite track from the EP (because of course I love them all), but if I had to choose one I’m most proud of – this would probably be it.
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Hayley Chillcott’s EP ‘Finally Home’ will be available on all digital outlets from 20 April. Catch her live 19 April in Brighton
Instagram and Twitter:  @hayleychillcott
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Track of the day: ‘Turned to Ash’ by Black Palms

London trio Black Palms have just released their debut single ‘Turned To Ash’, and it goes like this …

The band say:

“Like most Londoners, we descend from a melting pot of cultures including Jamaica, Greece and Iraq, and like most Londoners, we also find the city has the ability to drive you insane! In ‘Turned To Ash’ we’ve metaphorically captured that build-up of frustration…until you…implode…and turn to ash…

We also love guitar music and wanted to draw on our diverse range of influences to create a contemporary sound unafraid of being both heavy and song-driven. For us, combining the soaring vocals of Lianne La Havas with the down-tuned heaviness of Royal Blood is a perfect match!”

eed6c9_5b4a4c3c47944e7d84ec1669c94d310e~mv2_d_3000_3000_s_4_2The track can be downloaded free from the band’s website if you sign up to their mailing list, which seems like fair does: www.blackpalms.co.uk

And you can catch them live in London:

30 March at Nambucca
2 May at Bar 512
17 June Notting Hill Arts Club
22 June The Amersham Arms
 

 

Introducing: The Violet Kind

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The Violet Kind are a Scottish indie rock trio, releasing a lush EP, OXTR, on 16th March 2018 via Kindness Records.

OXTR acts as a poignant reminder of the reality of rape culture and a means of catharsis for the survivor of sexual violence. In a brave endeavour to tackle a heavy subject, The Violet Kind show a sensitive and powerful regard to survivors by championing those who are brave enough to speak out and standing with those who aren’t able to. Influenced by film scores, the compositions each contain a motif; descending melodies to represent the villain and ascending melodies to represent the hero. The same rhythm appears throughout OXTR to showcase the repetition of gender based violence within society.

Although each song tackles a different issue within the main topic, the trio’s bright chords, delicate melodies and intelligent songwriting remains a constant. Lead single Speakeasy immediately introduces front woman Katya Mansell’s dynamic lead vocal, sounding akin to the likes of Paramore’s Hayley Williams.

OXTR is out on 16th March 2018 via Kindness Records.

Find The Violet Kind on Facebook and Twitter