Music - live music and CD reviews
Kamelia Kountcheva reviews two rising stars in the Leeds music scene.
On the cold Wednesday evening of February 8th, in the heart of Leeds, a little epicentre of excited heat radiated from the Nation of Shopkeepers bar. Fans gathered, eagerly waiting to see two of their rising local bands perform.
Hunting Bears, a five-piece folk band from Leeds, took to the stage first, warming up a steadily thickening crowd of edgy fringes, floral dresses and schoolboy jumpers. The folk feel was imminent with this band, as the violin rang and the ukulele jangled the first chords of ‘Heavy Tree’. Their beautiful harmonies were only enhanced by the infectious chemistry between the…
Live Review Reel Big Fish
Cat Marr reviews the veteran pop-punkers who bring their party vibes back to Leeds one more time.
The ska pop-punk band Reel Big Fish once wrote a song called, "Don’t Start A Band" and after a sixteen plus year career, this isn’t their mantra.
If you haven’t heard or seen Reel Big Fish, imagine an American Madness, with a lead singer sporting a 50s style. Their music is ska-influenced and live they are extremely entertaining and the one simple word to sum them up is fun!
Without a song appearing in the charts recently, it was difficult to imagine how good they were going to be, they jumped on to stage and the first noticeable thing was…
Live Review Still Corners
Neil Chapman checks out the English Sub Pop signings whose recent album has received a good deal of praise.
Still Corners arrive at the Brudenell Social Club with some strong recommendations. The debut album Creatures of an Hour received universally strong reviews. It made a prominent appearance in the Leeds Guide album of the year list and was named Album of the Year by Jumbo Records. So it was with great expectations that a hardy few souls braved the bitter cold and snow on a Monday night to see what all the fuss was about.
Support for the night came from Just Handshakes (We’re British) and My Sad Captains. Both come and go having received a warm reception from…
Live Review Big Country
Scottish anthem-merchants take their new line-up out on the road.
The Scottish mountains backdrop that illuminates the O2 Academy stage leaves you in no doubt as to who is playing tonight. Big Country consists of the original members Bruce Watson (guitars), Tony Butler (bass) and Mark Brzezicki (drums). Since 2010 they have been joined by Watson’s son Jamie (guitar) and Mike Peters of The Alarm (vocals), who has taken over the vocal duties once filled by the much missed Stuart Adamson.
Big Country never quite reached the pinnacle of success other stadium rockers of the same era, such as U2 or The Waterboys, did. They still share many of the…
Live Review Clap Your Hands Say Yeah
American alt-rock band that now appear to have weathered the early barrage of hype and return to Leeds with a knockout performance.
At first glance, CYHSY looks like a complicated set of letters thrust together chaotically and haphazardly. However, in reality, this American indie rock band is refreshingly simple: good tunes played to an audience of fans who can’t wait to listen to them.
Clap Your Hands Say Yeah formed in 2004 and gained international success through a flurry of online exposure that was sealed with their self-released, self-titled debut album in 2005. A second album, Some Loud Thunder, followed in 2007 and then the rumour every devotee fears. The band was “taking a break” and the thousands of international followers that…
Interview One Night Only Play It With Style
We talk tailoring, shopping in the VQ and modelling for Burberry with two fifths of Yorkshire band One Night Only, singer guitarist George Craig and drummer James Craig
You got your big fashion break through the band.
George: Designer and Burberry’s chief creative officer Christopher Bailey saw the video for ‘Just For Tonight’ and called me in. I tried on some suits and didn’t really know what was going on, but then I got a call to ask me to model for the brand. Talk about a big break. It opened so many doors and I’ve met some great people. Burberry’s a real part of my look and they’re so savvy when it comes to music, it’s brilliant to be part of it. The team at Burberry are…
Interview Martin Tinsdall
The man behind the 1977-8 new wave fanzine, New Pose, tells us about the music scene in Leeds when punk was taking off
"There was no one writing about punk rock in Leeds at the time, none of the big newspapers seemed bothered so me and the girl I was going out with at the time thought that if you could just get a camera, any camera, and just go to a gig and write about it, take a few photographs that it would be like the NME, but it couldn’t have been further from the truth, you really do have to take a lot of photographs and write a lot.
"We’d seen the Anarchy in the UK tour [with The Clash, the…
CD Review The Rosie Taylor Project
Twin Beds (Odd Box)
One time Leodensian (now London-based) sextet the Rosie Taylor Project arrive with their second album Twin Beds, continuing their blend of poetic lyricism with gentle acoustic tunes. The result of this combination is a record that superficially sounds very thin, but will offer more to those prepared to concentrate on the lyrics.
Tracks such as ‘For Esme’ and lead single ‘Sleep’ give the album some sonic substance, with the latter in particular offering up an infectious rhythm, but often the instruments are too fleeting to give any of the songs any real musical bite. All too regularly the melodies are…