Tuesday, 19 December 2017

Feature: Ferris & Sylvester

Ferris & Sylvester are London based alternative Americana duo, Issy Ferris and Archie Sylvester. They met as solo musicians battling through London's vibrant music scene and started writing together. In early 2016, the pair recorded their first record 'The Yellow Line EP' and are now getting ready to release their forthcoming EP 'Made In Streatham', set for release 2nd Feb (2018). 

1. What process did you go through creating 'The Room' and how much did it differ to your previous release?
We had a lot of fun creating The Room as part of our EP, Made In Streatham. The whole record was written and recorded in our South London flat; we kitted out our kitchen/living room with insulation, recording equipment, all the instruments we needed - including a full drum kit - and a bunch of great musicians. Not sure if we’re too popular with our neighbours now sadly! The Room represents such a defining moment in time for us, so it was only right to record it our way with our favourite people. Our last EP had a very different journey. We were incredibly honoured to create our first ever record with the legendary producer, Martin ‘Youth’ Glover in his recording studio looking out over Sierra Nevada… quite different to looking out over Streatham Hill’s train tracks from our homemade studio. Despite both being very different, both were centred around long days with seriously talented musicians and engineers. We feel we got so much out of both journeys and are very proud of both records.

2. Who influences you musically and what inspires you lyrically?
We are both constantly listening to music to inspire us and we consider it a really important part of songwriting. We listen to a really broad range of artists and genres from Fleetwood Mac’s hooky lyrics to D’angelo’s irresistible funk to Django Reinhardt’s gypsy jazz guitar. Lyrically, we love the poets; Dylan, Joni, Johnny, Simon & Garfunkel. We love listening to albums, which sadly grow less and less popular in modern day music. However, we have found some true gems like Flyte’s album ‘The Loved Ones’ and Laura Marling’s ‘Semper Femina’. What inspires us most is listening to new music that we haven’t heard before, no matter the genre, giving us new ideas to play with. 

3. With your forthcoming EP 'Made In Streatham' looming, what track are you most excited for people to hear?
We are so excited for the new year because it means people can hear our favourite track off the EP, ‘Sometimes’. We are so proud of this one and feel it’s the most important song of the lot. We talk about togetherness when everything else seems unclear, which couldn’t feel anymore relevant. We’re also so excited for people to sit down and listen to the whole EP as one!

4. You recently played a three-week residency at The Spiritual Bar in Camden, but where in the world would be your dream venture to play a residency?

We love playing at Spiritual Bar. It’s where we met and where we developed the band, so it’s a very special place for us. It’s hard to think of any place where we would feel more at home! Although, we would love to go somewhere new with a great music scene like New Orleans and find a new stomping ground… any suggestions?

5. Would you rather only drink chocolate milkshakes for the rest of your life, or only eat pizza (for the rest of your life)?
PIZZAAAAA! All day, everyday. 

'The Room' Review:
'The Room' is my definition of a perfect folk song. It's a steady track with a brilliant harmonica intro, building into vocals that compliment each other wonderfully. Ferris & Sylvester effortlessly combine a classic 60s/70s sound with a warm modern indie vibe. I'm really looking forward to hearing the rest of their EP 'Made In Streatham'!

Ferris & Sylvester's Links:

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Friday, 15 December 2017

Spotlight: Don Broco

London four-piece, Don Broco, have just released their latest single ('T-Shirt Song') from their third album, 'Technology'. The album follows their 2015 Top 10 album 'Automatic', which propelled the band into mainstream consciousness. Since that release the band have played a sold out headline show at O2 Brixton Academy and played arenas across the UK, the United States, Europe, and Japan with Bring Me The Horizon, 5 Second of Summer and many more. They've just played their biggest headline show to date at London's Alexandra Palace and are looking forward to the album release and February 2018 tour... 

'T-Shirt Song' Review:
Don Broco are back with another punchy and incredibly catchy track. It cuts and builds into fantastic thrashing choruses that are bound to get to stuck in your head. This release highlights why they're supporting the likes of Bring Me The Horizon on tour. Their tracks are full of energy and bound to get the crowd going. Everything comes together so well and fronted by strong vocals it's a song you'll be drumming along to in no time! 

See Don Broco Live (2018):
8th February: Pyramids, Portsmouth
9th February: O2 Academy, Bristol
10th February: Great Hall, Cardiff
12th February: UEA, Norwich
13th February: Rock City, Nottingham
15th February: O2 Academy, Birmingham
16th February: Academy, Manchester
17th February: O2 Academy, Leeds
19th February: Northumbria Institute, Newcastle
20th February: Garage, Aberdeen
21st February: Barrowlands, Glasgow

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Tuesday, 12 December 2017

Feature: Ella Grace

Indie folk artist, Ella Grace, recently released her single 'Here We Are Again', telling of a love lost to depression and the journey onward from that space. Ella has built a supportive online community, sharing her views on sustainable living, mental wellness and feminism on Instagram. Now in her early 20s and signed to 'Ont Sofa Records, she is sharing her music for the first time... 

1. What process did you go through creating your latest single 'Here We Are Again'?

My creative process is probably a little... different than most trained musicians only because I'm pretty much totally untrained and so writing has always been a very primal/natural experience for me! I'll usually feel a song/melody/words ready to come out of me - and this can happen when I'm driving, cooking, out with friends, it's totally random - and if I'm able to I will find a quiet space, open my phone notes, grab a guitar if there's one handy and let it come out of me. 'Here We Are Again' was written in this way, within 15 minutes, on my parents houseboat. The writing process for me is always hugely spontaneous, therapeutic and quite an intense experience in terms of trying to get down the words and melody I can hear in my head.

2. If you were to tour anywhere you wanted, which three countries would you most like to visit and why?

South Africa, Hawaii and Spain, they're just all places I resonate with!

3. Who influences you musically and what inspires you lyrically?

Musically my inspiration are pretty mixed; I love Nick Drake, Jack Johnson, T-Rex and The Rolling Stones. Lyrically I've always loved musicians who are also storytellers, my favourites growing up were Lily Allen and Kate Nash.

4. You've caught a lot of people's attention with your music so far, is there more music on it's way or any tour plans in the works? 

Always... I've got a new single on the horizon and next year I'l be touring independently and playing festivals.

5. If you could change three things in/about the world, what would you choose? 

My biggest wish would be that there were no injustices in this world, that covers most things! But more specifically, I would get rid of all slaughter houses, I think it's important to be personally connected to what we are eating. I want to live in a world where we celebrate our differences, and I would end the destructive practices we make the natural world endure for our greed.

'Here We Are Again' Review:

This single is a simply beautiful track. Ella's sultry vocals are reminiscent of the likes of Laura Marling or Billie Marten and add to the theme of the lyrics. The addition of ethereal harmonies add to the atmosphere of the song and bring out the simple but incredibly effective guitar and drums. A wonderfully warm folk song that I'll definitely be listening to again and again. 

Ella Grace's Links:

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Friday, 1 December 2017

Feature: Hannah Trigwell

Pop singer/songwriter and YouTube sensation, Hannah Trigwell, has released her latest single 'Nobody' taken from her debut album 'RED', coming early 2018. Hannah previewed the album to fans on a sold-out UK tour last month and has another live show at Finborough Arms on 15th December. With over 500,000 subscribers on YouTube and millions of views on her videos, she has secured a string of top ten international singles and was crowned the 'Best Unsigned Artist' at the Online Music Awards. 

1. What were your main inspirations and influences when writing your latest single 'Nobody'? 
I started to write a song about a popular kid wanting an unpopular kid to like them back... that inspired the title 'Nobody', but the song quickly became about something else when I thought my ideas weren't up to scratch. I got so frustrated at second guessing and doubting myself. I wanted to break the cycle of negative thoughts that I had fallen into, and stop calling myself a nobody. This song was the soundtrack to me forcing myself to give myself more credit really. 

2. How would you compare the reactions and interactions with your YouTube videos with those of your live performances at gigs? 
There's no live audience, so the experience for me is totally different. When you can see people's faces their instant reactions, it's just a really powerful thing. Especially with emotional song performances. I love making videos but nothing beats the feeling of a crowd signing your songs back to you, or meeting people at the shows! 

3. You've just been on a sold out tour in support of your forthcoming debut album, what was your biggest headline?
Each show was amazing, and so different from the last. The atmosphere at each gig was perfect, I haven't enjoyed a tour as much as that before! My hometown gig in Leeds was great, I had family and friends there too, which adds to the nerves, but it's great to have their support of course! When people sang 'Another Beautiful Mistake' (my previous single) with me, that was a really special moment. 

4. Where do you hope to be in a year's time?
In the studio recording the second album!!!

5. Would you rather wear gloves for socks, or socks for scarves?
Socks for scarves. I've heard it's very on trend at the moment... 

'Nobody' Review:
'Nobody' is a single that follows on well from Hannah's previous releases, concreting her sound, ready for her debut album. The listener can definitely hear influences of heavier artists, potentially the likes of PVRIS, but Hannah's made it her own. The lyrics are raw and honest and the video also brings those to life. It's a catchy track with an infectious hook and memorable melody, this song is bound to get stuck in your head! 

Hannah Trigwell's Links:

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