Posts Tagged ‘Mirrors

19
May
10

THE GIG LIST – NUMBER 43 – GREAT ESCAPE REVIEW (DAY 2)

As bad as hangovers are, and they only get worse as you age, they somehow don’t seem to hold us back when you wake up in a good mood, at a festival, with a day of exciting treats ahead.  The same thing happens when you’re on holiday.  Those hangover blues seem to wash away that bit faster.  The glorious sunshine we had helped too, but as we stepped out for day 2 of our mammoth new music festival we noticed the buzz around Brighton was palpable, as the swarm of industry and fans alike we swimming in the streets of our seaside city.

DAY TWO

MIRRORS

EXPERIENCE – We saw this Brighton four piece the previous night, but that was our Recommender vs Source after party, which, although an awesome show, became a far more drunken and raucous affair.  This time we fancied catching them in an altogether different situation, with it’s own challenges for the band.  We now found ourselves at 15:00, in broad daylight, in a tucked away courtyard in the centre of our city’s maze-like South Lanes area.  It was delightful to catch a breeze as we watched this OMD-saturated electro pop as part of the festivals many daytime shows.  These afternoon open air performances were to throw us some of the weekend’s biggest highlights, but more on that in the next post.  We chatted with Mirrors frontman James as he was setting up and he suggested that they wanted to play during the daytime in preparation for festival shows, to see how it went down.  This time the band were in Skint Records open garage, which couldn’t be less matched with Mirrors dark, clean, synthetic music, but they turned out yet another thrilling performance.  The unrelated sign on the wall read ‘Massive Masters’, which although is not quite how we would describe them, is perhaps the kind of adjectives they should get used to if they fulfill the promise on display, daylight or otherwise.

BEST TRACKINTO THE HEART

TinyRedLineForBlog.jpg picture by odelaybradford

WE//ARE//ANIMAL

EXPERIENCE – A couple of beachfront beers in this sunshine were quickly scoffed, before we headed off to The Foundry pub to catch this Welsh five piece. Although their Idolise LP is out, this group is unsigned and roaming up and down the country, as part of Dead Young Records mini UK showcase, where a collection of bands are playing their home towns together. This tour takes in Leeds, Bangor and this show in Brighton, before heading up to Liverpool. We chatted with Dead Young Records at the bar, who were indeed very young, but ultimately enthusiastic and refreshing with their many plans, setting their base in Leeds and aiming their sights on bringing fresh music to the UK. The band jammed through their garage rock sound, which seemed backwards when you consider that I’d just come from a performance that was inside an actual garage, but this was just as enjoyable. Powerful riffs and punched beats crunch out, with just enough keys to lift it, while the vocals garner the focus, sung with guts, style and gravel in equal parts. We spoke with the frontman, (who’s name we think is Cynyr), after the performance and he confirmed that they’d only been together since December, which is remarkable considering they’ve already churned out an album. You might be able to catch them at the Radio One showcase in their hometown of Bangor this summer.

BEST TRACKUNFOLD/FOLD

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GHOST POET

EXPERIENCE – It was a relief to move back out into the fresh air once more, having seen a sweaty show in the tiny backstreet Foundry Pub and the next daytime performance on show was Ghost Poet. We can’t write too much about this as we only stopped for half of their set as we walked past. We also simply don’t know much about them either, short of researching. It’s worth giving them a mention as this is precisely the kind of unknown show (it wasn’t even on any listings) that crops up between your plans. We turned a corner on our way to meet friends at another bar and came across this lyricist chucking out his poetry. Simple, lowered beats with minimal basslines and keys stay in the background while his expressive vocals are delivered in his lazy haze style. Having subsequently checked out the Myspace, he rolls out an interesting, dark urban set of lo-fi tunes that are well worth your investigation. He’s clearly linked one of the tracks up with Micachu too, so with a bit of luck he’s perhaps around the (more important) metaphorical corner of the public’s wider conscience.

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DARWIN DEEZ

EXPERIENCE – Starting our first shows of the evening, we had planned to catch 1,2,3, but it was a waste of time as once down in the basement, it was so rammed we couldn’t even see the stage. We decided to leave and had a choice between seeing Warpaint and Darwin Deez. It turned out Darwin was also rammed and the queue was suffering from the common one-in-one-out policy that you sadly get at many of the tiny venues around The Great Escape. It’s even worse if you only have a standard ticket. Thankfully Jonny Cassell, this venue’s Promotions Manager, was outside and kindly allowed us indoors, but we knew he couldn’t do this all weekend as it’s simply unfair. Inside Darwin was halfway through his set, which didn’t particularly concern us, as we had seen him at the NME Radar Tour the previous week. We had urgently tried to book him when Velo pulled out of our Recommender party at the last minute, but their agent informed us that he planned to stick to just his scheduled Great Escape shows, as the NME Tour had knackered him out. This isn’t surprising considering how active they are onstage, with their busy dance routines, to tracks such as Walk Like An Egyptian, that are squeezed inbetween their own works. The crowd loved it, particularly the killer single, Radar Detector, which we’re glad we witnessed, even if it was from the back of the room.

BEST TRACKDARWIN DEEZ

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WOLF GANG

EXPERIENCE – The great thing about being at the back of a crowd is that you’re able to leave first, which we happily did at the end of Darwin Deez’s show. Virtually next door is another large, decent, beach-fronted club, Coalition, where Wolf Gang (The Recommender’s booking for our end of June party) was due to play. It was still busy but the dancefloor area is broader and stepped so you can’t fail to get a good view. We headed to the photographer’s pit between the crowd and the stage so were in great position to watch him close up. Max McElligott is a talented music machine, with many singles in the bag, such The King And All Of His Men, or Pieces Of You, but watching the rest of his catalogue on show today, he isn’t relying entirely on them. Don’t get us wrong, they are the stand out tracks on this performance, but there’s a clever craft on display. Comparisons to David Byrne, Bowie and Duran Duran are a little over-bearing on anyone, but they also hint that this is a broad, but inventive musician at work, who’s aiming for the charts.

BEST TRACK – PIECES OF YOU (Remix listed below…)

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HURTS

EXPERIENCE – We’ve written up plenty on HURTS before now and discussed them on other forums, as they are fast becoming a bit of a marmite band. In a nutshell their problem is that they’re easy to hate, but that misses their talent and abilities to pen a tight, timeless pop tune. Randomly bumping into The Recommender’s partners in crime, Matt Allfrey and George Nunn, always helps lift our mood, only for HURTS to come onstage and do their very best to lower it. Their songs soar and their show is tighter than an Olympic swimsuit, complete with that silly, out of place opera singer at the back of the stage. We had seen them headline the NME Radar Tour where the room continued to empty the more they played, which seemed a little harsh, but thankfully that wasn’t the case here. So planned out and so delicately constructed is every tiny detail of their set that you get a carbon copy of the NME show. One hand is placed in the pocket. Out comes the comb which he never actually uses. Even the frowns seem deliberate during what should be a genuinely emotional section. Herein lies the issues. With so many excellent, moody, emotive, often dark, but often equally uplifting tunes, they seem to have removed the integrity. Emotion cannot be this contrived and work for long. The fear is that with all their shunning of the blogs and the kind of planned control more common with the US President or Royalty, this spin will lose momentum. Good songs will get you far, but the really successful bands, who they constantly compare themselves to in interviews also have character and a humanity to them.

BEST TRACKBETTER THAN LOVE

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DELPHIC

EXPERIENCE – This was our last showcase of the day and was to be found at one of Brigthon’s largest venues, the Brighton Dome. We arrived, half cut by this point, but buzzing like a power station, to a find another massive queue. We approached the front to see if our press passes were able to jump the queue when we noticed another, even longer queue, snaking away in the other direction. Turns out that was the non-press pass queue! Fortunately we secured photo passes too, so the doorman let us in. Anyway, once inside we witnessed an enormous climax to the day, with a show so spectacular and special that we will never forget it. Delphic are going to be massive and ruled the stage from the outset. We would even go so far as to state they are the new Bloc Party, with the their emotional, thumping set. The strip lights created a gorgeous look as their thundering indie dance tunes spun the crowd into a jerking frenzy. Their album takes a step up, no make that one giant leap, to a whole new level when played live. The drums punch right through, even breaking off for a monster drum roll for periods, like some kind of 70s drummer, but the real trick is their ability to properly jam. The songs are extended into seven or eight minute leviathans that build and build to a close. If that’s not a metaphor for our perfect Friday at The Great Escape then we don’t know what is!

BEST TRACKTHIS MOMENTARY

17
May
10

THE GIG LIST – NUMBER 42 – GREAT ESCAPE REVIEW (DAY 1)

It’s rare that we review anything here on The Recommender, choosing to preview most things instead.  This is so we can keep things positive and remove the pressures involved in reviewing shows, bands and releases that turn out to be rubbish.  However, The Great Escape Festival is such a special event for us, with so many impressive new bands arriving in our home city, alongside the generous helping of unique and memorable experiences, it’s more a case of – where to start!?

We will run through the shows we witnessed from each of the three days and try to include some of the various anecdotal moments too…well, if we can remember them all.  It was quite a messy affair and the hangover has refused to budge for two days now.  Suffice to say, with a couple of Press Accredited passes in hand, we were once again fully able to enjoy this spectacular spectacle, with all the blindingly good experiences it’s able to throw up.

Having decided to co-host The Recommender’s first ever Great Escape party, alongside the Brighton Source magazine, on the opening night of this year’s festival, we were immediately launched into the weekend with a million things to organise.  Starting the whole event by standing in a lengthy queue for our press passes meant that we were late for the start of the band’s soundchecks for our party.  Not the ideal way to begin, but Source legend, (The) James Kendall, stepped in to cover until we got to the venue to help.

The sun was beaming broadly and the first pint of many was poured.  As we sipped our beers we contemplated that drinking this early in the day probably isn’t a great idea when standing at the start of what will be a three day set of Leo Sayers (cockney rhyming slang = an all dayer).  Pope Joan were already there setting up, with Foreign Office arriving soon after.  Mirrors followed and The Agitator hovered around.  Quite a star-studded bar for 5pm on the first day!

We were aware that time was ticking closer to the doors officially opening at 9pm and already the soundchecks were falling way behind.  King Charles arrived last and we all concluded that there simply wasn’t going to be enough time to soundcheck them before their earlier gig that day, at The Queens Hotel.  Like an alcoholic ostrich ignoring the problems we continued to bury ourselves into yet more pints, with Battery Powered DJ (and Recommender contributor), Matt Allfrey, joining me and the delectable Geogre (Poundance) Nunn.  Neither of them are known for their sobriety.  Gulp.

The bar was open during the day, even though we officially started at 9pm, so during the soundchecks you had this strange set up where people were arriving and listening to bands rattle out thirty seconds of a tune, before stopping and shouting and pointing at the sound engineers.  It didn’t stop the crowd actually applauding Foreign Office though.  That’s the first time I’ve ever seen people clap a soundcheck.  Talking of firsts, it was time for me to head over to the first show of the evening, Crystal Fighters, at Digital.  We may have had responsibilities to our own party, but surely we could sneak off to catch a band or two, right?

DAY ONE

CRYSTAL FIGHTERS

EXPERIENCE –  Note to self:  Must not forget to eat during the Great Escape weekend.  One rapid Italian bite later we were around the corner at the excellent beach-fronted club, Digital.  With Brighton’s best soundsystem, large stage and larger dancefloor, alongside some fantastic lighting, controlled by our friend Tom, it felt the perfect set up to watch our first show of the weekend.  We got right to the very front, as with a photography pass in hand, we were able to enjoy that space between the packed crowd and stage.  Crystal Fighters walked onto the stage in complete darkness as the crowd spotted them and began screaming.  Boom!  The strobe started as they launched into their high energy set.  One of them already had his top off as he bashed those Spanish wooden planks that are so synonymous with their sound.  With them all having long hair and constantly headbanging, it has a rocking, metal feel to the show, but rest assured this is octane-fuelled dance music at it’s wildest.  The crowd responded as we looked back to witness carnage, fists pumping and broad smiles aplenty.  As much as their track I Love London ruled the set, it had me thinking – I love Brighton!  We grabbed our photos and headed out to run back to our own party before anyone told me off.  The perfect start.  Phew!

HIGHLIGHT TRACK: I LOVE LONDON

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MIRRORS

EXPERIENCE –  Now back at our party, we realised that the venue was absolutely rammed.  We wedged our way to the stage area and got talking to James and Ally from Mirrors.  We spoke about how we had seen their first ever gig at last year’s Great Escape, so it felt fitting to have them play our event.  They seem relaxed, the crowd was buzzing and well oiled by this point, so all was well.  As the lights went down and those first few synth bars of Fear Of Drowning started on the empty stage the crowd reacted with the expected cheers and clapping.  Mirrors walked on in their dark suits, looking the sharpest dressed people in the building and burst through a majestic set.  Frontman James has grown into a much more complete and confident frontman, even going down onto his knees, James Brown-style, at one point.  It was particularly enjoyable seeing a band that had clearly evolved from last year’s showcase.  All the hard, grafting efforts from the team involved in the run up to this gig felt worthwhile.  Perfection.

HIGHLIGHT TRACK: FEAR OF DROWNING

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FOREIGN OFFICE

EXPERIENCE –  This band are the least experienced on show tonight, still without full management, agent or label, but we fully expect that to change in the near future.  Tonight’s performance was yet another example of a band with a packed bag of tunes, ready for the pop charts.  Hassle free to deal with, punctual for soundchecks, positive and appreciative.  Everything you need from bands as a promoter.  Perhaps it’s once you throw managers, agents and labels in the mix that things suddenly get complicated?  Just.  Saying.  The crowd responded well, perhaps knowing less about this band than the others, which meant that this was a true case of ‘recommending’.  Tonight our suggesting skills were clearly on form, as people enjoyed it, dancing and smiling as they watched.  The set was tight and the atmosphere was buzzing like a stomping house party.  There’s something awesome about gigs where the crowd is packed and only about one yard from the lead singer.

HIGHLIGHT TRACK: VOICES

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THE AGITATOR

EXPERIENCE –  You simply cannot throw a party like this, with five bands on the bill, at minimal costs and not expect a couple of technical issues, right?  Right.  We should start by saying that our friends Derek and Rob entered the stage to perhaps the most anticipated show of the evening.  Those folk in the audience who have never seen them before were salivating over their reputation for being an extraordinary show, whilst those in the crowd that have seen them before were salivating because they knew this was about to go off!  They kicked into gear with the usual rolling, breakbeat thump and the otherwise meek and sweet Derek Meins began his rallying call.  Political lyrics, along with his usual foot-stomping, jerked dancing and thrashed shaker, accompanied his rasping vocals, that are sung like his head is about to explode.  He got through the majority of his set, before the sound problems occurred, so it wasn’t much really, but sadly three microphones died on us for no reason and the set was cut slightly short.  Disappointingly, Derek walked off fuming at the sound engineer, but we did what we could.  It’s perhaps expected when he gives so much energy, drama and anger into his songs that his emotions were running at full steam.  Me and James duly met him outside and sorted out the apology, but this is live music for you.  To be honest, it actually left the crowd wanting more, which is definitely no bad thing.

HIGHLIGHT TRACKGET READY

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KING CHARLES

EXPERIENCE – There was a tap on the shoulder from the bouncer.  Apparently there’s been a one-in-one-out policy all night long on the door, but in the queue outside the venue there were eight or nine people claiming to be in one of the bands.  We squeezed our way to the front door to check this out.  Once outside we were greeted by a patient, but confused King Charles keyboardist, James Barnett.  Behind him were the band, including the distinctive Charles himself and a handful of friends, or seeing how good they looked, probably groupies.  We laughed and took them all backstage via the side entrance.  The giant, but lovely Mitch, who manages the band with James, chatted and helped out, arranging for The Recommender to try to meet with them next week to see the rest of their roster etc.  We remembered that there’s going to be a lot of networking done this weekend too.  King Charles kicked off, roughly on time, with a performance, and this was a true performance, of, well, royal standards.  They looked great, the tunes were as upbeat as they were beautiful and Charles is about as good a guitarist as we’ve ever seen.  They totally rocked the crowd, at one point jumping on top of the drums during a guitar solo.  We witnessed a full on, proper star of the future going at full tilt tonight.  It perfectly suited the hedonistic, drunk party atmosphere.  Extraordinary, considering we’d originally booked Velo for this slot, but they pulled out at the last minute, which meant that we had to run around just 24 hours before as we desperately looked for a replacement band.  What a substitution it turned out to be!  We WILL definitely be booking them again.

HIGHLIGHT TRACKTIME OF ETERNITY

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POPE JOAN

EXPERIENCE – Last on tonight was Pope Joan, who had been around the venue all evening waiting for their slot and observing one blindingly great performance after another, so there was undoubtedly a bit of pressure by now.  At least the crowd were warmed up to boiling point for them.  The key thing with this band is that they have an awesome frontman, who comes out of nowhere, performing with his distinctive moustache and quiff.  Mark’s ability to punch the words out, almost headbutting the microphone as he sways back and forth, virtually fucking with his guitar as he does so, is an astonishing thing to witness.  The pressure to perform evaporated immediately and the crowd responded well to their punked, indie rock tunes.  Although pretty much mullered by now, we continued to take photos, of which many more, from the whole weekend, will be posted up on our Flickr site here.  Jumping around the small stage, Mark and the band ended the night flawlessly, completing the perfect start to what would prove to be a very memorable weekend.  The main problem now was, how can any show top this?  We guess that’s precisely what we were aiming for.  Mission accomplished.  At the party’s close we wandered around to Digital again to meet backstage at the club with their Promotions Manager and good friend of The Recommender, Jonny Cassell.  We compared notes on our respective venue’s performances as we walked home.  Bed by 4:40am.  What a day!

HIGHLIGHT TRACKDICTATOR

13
May
10

THE GIG LIST – NUMBER 41 – SOURCE vs RECOMMENDER

Cue the Eye Of The Tiger music…

Brighton’s gloves are off as The Recommender and The Source magazine go head to head with a showcase born in Brighton.

It’s well known that The Great Escape Festival is a massive industry shindig, with tons of music managers, labels, A&R, agents, journalists, bloggers and of course hundreds of artists all taking the seaside trip to London.

Sadly it’s meant that the whole affair has a London-on-sea feel about it and lacks something local.  This year the festival organisers have pushed for Brighton to be heard and asked for our city to try and organise our own shows alongside the others.

This is where The Recommender, a blog born in Brighton and well known here, alongside The Source magazine, Brighton’s ‘going out bible’ that’s been tipping us on music and cool culture for over a decade, step in and show just how amazing this city can be.  We’re putting on what should prove to be THE best Brighton showcase of the weekend.

The buzz is massive, the venue will be packed, the bands are mostly from Brighton and all of them kick ass.  Below we list some tracks for you to fall in love with.  Please note that the Velo sadly had to pull out at the last minute, so although they’re on the poster, we’ve had to replace them with King Charles, who are just as awesome!

Venue: The Black Lion, Black Lion Street, South Lanes, Brighton.
Doors: 9:30pm
Stage Times: Mirrors (10pm) – Foreign Office (10:50pm) – The Agitator (11:40pm) – King Charles (12:30pm) – Pope Joan (1:20am)

MIRRORS – FEAR OF DROWNING

FOREIGN OFFICE – LEAVING THE HOUSE

THE AGITATOR – GET READY

KING CHARLES – LOVE LUST

POPE JOAN – CENTURIONS

This gig will prove that Brighton is packed with talent and will stand tall against anything London brings down.  It looks like the knock out punch will be Brighton made.

On a separate note, we have two FREE weekend tickets to giveaway to our lucky readers, courtesy of VITAMIN WATER.  To obtain these tickets simply email us at therecommenderblog@gmail.com and we will instruct you how to collect them.  To qualify you must have left a comment on this post with your names.  First come first served.
(MB)

09
Jan
10

THE GIG LIST – NUMBER 34

DelphicMirrors.jpg Delphic And Mirrors picture by odelaybradford

GROVESNOR, HOT CHIP (DJ SET), :KINEMA:

It feels like it’s been a little while since we did one of these ‘Gig Lists’, but quite frankly it’s expected, as December is often full with festive DJ nights, rather than quality bands.  So here we are with a new year, a new decade indeed, and the event horizon looks very bright.  There’s a massive amount of quality line ups through January and February in Brighton.  We begin with this special showcase, involving not only :Kinema: and Grovesnor, but also a DJ set from Alexis out of Hot Chip.  Although they don’t seem to be headlining, it should feel like local band :Kinema:’s night, as it’s set up to celebrate the launch of their fantastic Circles EP.  :Kinema: get our focus today as they are very much a band flying highest over Brighton, with a lot of blog buzz and online chatter suggesting they are leading the current pack of impossibly catchy, fearless, intelligent pop bands.  Singer Dom Ashton’s irresistable, George Michael-esque vocals float over the synth-led, clapped-beat bounce that feels like the soundtrack to your best ever fuck.  Following them will be Grovesnor, who take the shameless pop to Elton John levels, but don’t be fooled into thinking this is music for your mother, as Rob Smoughton creates smart, shiny music for the midnight hour.  Being backed by Paris’ refined Kitsune label adds even more kudos to an already bright star.  To top the night off he brings along a member from Rob’s former band, Hot Chip’s Alexis Taylor, who’s helped to produce and remix his work, and seeing as 2010 could well belong to everybody’s favourite warm potato snacks this really couldn’t get any more t(r)opical.  This is going to feel like a thousand Saturday nights rolled into one.  Bring your best shoes, your best shirts and your best moves.  (MB)

ACTS:                     GROVESNOR, HOT CHIP (DJ SET), :KINEMA:
VENUE:                   Jam, Middle Street, Brighton.
COST:                     £8.50
DATE:                     Saturday 23rd January 2010
WEBSITES:            Grovesnor MyspaceHot Chip Myspace, :Kinema: Myspace
TRACK 1:               GROVESNOR – DRIVE YOUR CAR (HOT CHIP REMIX)

TRACK 2:               :KINEMA: – LETS GET TO IT

TinyRedLineForBlog.jpg picture by odelaybradford

DELPHIC, MIRRORS

Tickets for this gig are selling fast so act quick, or prepare to suck somebody’s cock, because this night is about as good as it gets!  The support slot tonight is filled perfectly by Brighton band Mirrors, who’s buzz during 2009 got as loud in teenagers ears as one of those Mosquito alarms that they hang in shopping malls to deter ‘Hoodies’.  2010 will be the year they fully take off, as they’ve secured their deserved major label signatures and prepare a mighty launch pad.  If the likes of genre-mates, Hurts, can make the top 5 shortlist on the BBC Sound of 2010 Poll, then Mirrors surely should have been on the longlist, but alas not.  The ingredients were all there, with their massive, melodic, atmospheric pop noir (or fantastically named ‘noir n b’), their major label backing, their online buzz and their tight, grey suits and ties.  Topping the bill are a band that seem to be relaunching Manchester, claiming to have finally found the electronic antidote to the Gallagher brothers, sharing more in common with Bloc Party or Klaxons than they do the ugly brashness of 90s ‘Madchester’.  Coming a deserved 3rd on the aforementioned BBC Poll brings with it the sort of hype that could even scare Anthony Volodkin.  They’re almost guaranteed to have a massive 2010, with their debut getting a release this same month and already attaining critical acclaim, being touted as the first great album of the ‘Tenties’.  The proposal is simple: if you want to see what the future might sound like, get to Audio.   (MB)

ACTS:                     DELPHIC,  MIRRORS
VENUE:                   Audio, Marine Parade, Brighton.
COST:                     £7.50
DATE:                     Tuesday 19th January 2010
WEBSITES:            Delphic MyspaceMirrors Myspace
TRACK 1:                DELPHIC – DOUBT (WHAT KIND OF BREEZE DO YOU BLOW? REMIX)

TRACK 2:               MIRRORS – FEAR OF DROWNING

07
Jul
09

Q & A – MIRRORS


Q & A – MIRRORS


We are delighted to be able to bring you an exclusive Q&A with one of the most exciting bands to emerge from Brighton in years. This continues in our growing line of interviewees, from Little Boots, to Marina & The Diamonds, bringing you cutting edge musicians in the early stages of their promising careers.

On this ocassion James and Ally from Mirrors took time out for us, as they prepare for their upcoming Loop Festival performance in their home town of Brighton. Put simply, we couldn’t be more excited if you attached a pair of electrodes to our bollocks. The promise and hype that surrounds this magical band are suggesting big things. The available music that we’ve heard and the live performances to date have only built on the growing reputation.

1.) OK, so you are new to most of us, yet you already have Brighton and the wider music community wetting their pants out there, so lets start at the beginning…We want to know how you all met? We heard you were members of the band Mum-Ra, so is this true and how did you come to form?

I suppose we just gravitated towards one another. James and Tate had just left Mumm-ra and moved to Brighton to start something new. The four of us just clicked. We all had this vision to create a band where the ideas and aesthetic were as considered as the music.

2.) Let’s introduce the band members individually – can we have each of your names and what each of you do in the band?

We are:
James – synthesizer & vocals
Ally – synthesizer & vocals
Tate – synthesizer
Joe – electronic drums

3.) Where do you each come from? Is it fair to introduce you as a ‘Brighton band’?

We think so. Brighton is our spiritual home. Our lives have become so much richer for moving here. It is a very vibrant city. We are all very proud to be a part of it.

4.) Was it true that your first gig was at the New Hero club in town? The Recommender was there and we were surprised at how you came to provide such a tight, well organised set. How many gigs have you played to date? What’s been your favourite?

That was our first show. we’ve only played a handful of shows so far. I think people are surprised how refined the performance is for such a new band. We didn’t want to leave anything to chance. Its all about the details.
Certainly the New Hero show holds a special place in our hearts, as it was the first show in our home city. Our plan is to set up a residency there where we can expand on our ideas – think painted silver dancers handing out trays of frozen flowers, koyaanisqatsi projected on the walls whilst DJ’s throw in some electronic madness. having our own night will give us a chance to create a full on 3D experience.

5.) What’s with the excellent matching ties and suits? Is this perhaps a nod to Kraftwerk or something new you’ve dreamed up?

Kraftwho? The suits compliment our music. A neat, classic image. We’ve seen a lot of scruffy looking fellows in recent times and the suits are just another little thing that separates Mirrors and it’s aesthetic from the other bands around us.

6.) For those readers totally new to you, how would you describe your sound? We heard you mention the fantastic description, ‘Pop Noir’, so can you elaborate?

It’s a phrase we coined ourselves. We wanted to stress the fact that we write “Pop” music as it can sometimes be overlooked when we start talking about our world. We think it’s an accurate reflection of the music we make. It’s memorable.

7.) We have heard reviews that tout OMD, Depeche Mode, Kraftwerk and Blancmange as comparisons, so can you confirm where and whom your music influences and inspirations are garnered from?

Well, yes, they are obvious reference points. But I think our sound is much denser than these bands and what we do also sounds very contemporary. We are living in the 21st century, the world around us will inevitably influence our music.

8.) We see you’re playing at Brighton’s Loop festival, which has our tails up, but are you planning to play any other festivals this summer?

We’re playing latitude, and maybe a couple of smaller shows around Brighton. However, we’re not the sort of band to play every show available to us. There’s no point. our shows will be select, special.

9.) There’s seems to only be a few demo’s floating around the blogs and online, so do you have many other songs recorded to date? Is there an albums worth written yet?

We have written many songs, but a lot of them still need work. Our writing process is very slow and methodical, but yes, the record is starting to take shape.

10.) Do you have any plans for a single, an EP and/or possibly an album launch yet?

We’ve got a single coming out this month on the Pure Groove label. Then there are plans in place for the rest of the year but nothing confirmed in terms of an album.

11.) We also heard a rumour about a haggle between labels for your signatures, in which it’s been suggested, rather over-excitedly, that a giant contract could be be offered. Although we presume this isn’t quite the case, can you please clarify the situation? Has anything been agreed with anyone yet? Who would be your ideal label?

We’ll work with the label that we feel best understands the band and it’s ambitions.

12.) Apart from the Loop Festival, what’s immediately next for Mirrors?

We want to make our live show something special. That’s very important to us. Writing and recording will continue and we’ll be ready to release a fantastic record next year.

13.) Lastly, we always ask at the end of each Q&A for the interviewees to become honorary ‘Recommenders’ by asking them to suggest any new bands/acts/DJ’s that have caught your eye in recent times that you would like to share with us?

We’re enjoying listening to Amadou & Mariam at the moment. It’s just a great pop record.

MIRRORSHIDE & SEEK (ysi)

OK, so that’s another great exclusive interview completed. Search our archives for more from Mirrors, as well as the other interviews we’ve done in the past. The Recommender will be at Loop Festival, so if you plan on joining us this coming weekend, pop here to grab a ticket. See you at the front…
Mike

04
Jul
09

THE GIG LIST – NUMBER 29


THE LOOP FESTIVAL – 2009



As the UK festival season gets into full swing and the likes of  the giant events, (Glastonbury, V Festival, Bestival, Reading/Leeds and T In The Park etc), take all the limelight and national coverage, we are pleased as punch to be sneaking some of the better and quite frankly cooler and smaller festivals into our plucky town of Brighton.

With the Loop Festival now in it’s 3rd year, what it may lack in size, it more than makes up for in quality and fresh originality. The line up gets stronger every year and we are pleased to associate The Recommender blog ever closer, as we know the organisers personally and we see first hand how they make such a massive effort.

The least we can do is list below our selected highlights from the long list of amazing acts that are on show. A handful of tickets, at a variety of rates to suit your budget, are still available here.


FEVER RAY Triangle Walks (ysi)
ESSERWork It Out (The Shoes Remix)       (ysi)
DATAROCKI Used To Dance With My Daddy (ysi)
WE HAVE BANDTime After Time (ysi)
FANFARLOI’m A Pilot (ysi)
THE INVISIBLELondon Girl (ysi)
THE XXCrystalised (ysi)
CASIOKIDSFot I Hose (ysi)
MIRRORSLook At Me (ysi)

As a side note, the band Mirrors have agreed in principal to do an interview with us in the run up to their show at Loop, so as a returned thanks we perhaps should suggest that you see them at the festival above all else. They’re an amazing spectacle, so you won’t be disappointed. See you there. Have an awesome time.
Mike

22
May
09

THE RECOMMENDER – NUMBER 35

With my liver well and truly reversed over, having now stomped off to a health farm for the weekend in a terrible mood and my mind feeling like it’s been electrified by a thousand eels, we bid farewell to the whirlwind that was Brighton’s Great Escape Festival. We promise to stop talking about it soon. Except perhaps to, ahem,  immediately break that promise as we located a trio of bands that we felt deserved their own Recommender posting, so promises aside, here you are…

MIRRORS

Never before have we witnessed such dramatic gossip and building hype as we do with this new Brighton band. Having only played their first live gig a couple of weeks ago at Brighton’s New Hero club, as a warm up for their triumphant Great Escape Festival slot, the label bosses were already in competition to sign them up. Rumours bounced around about a million pound contract, but only time will reveal all. What we do know is that they are by far and away the most interesting and complete act to appear out of Brighton in ages. And that’s saying something from this city. The 4-piece perform there dramatic, emotional, darkly electronic tricks with a great show when seen live. All four of them wear identical grey suits and stand dead-still with straight, emotionless faces between each track. It’s all in marked contrast to their sublime, pounding, intelligent, layered music that creeps out towards you from the shadows. It’s stolen a little from Kraftwerk, Gary Newman and Depeche Mode, but there’s still a magic 2009 ingredient in there too. Totally addictive and truly powerful.

IMG_2372.jpg Mirrors picture by odelaybradford

Find them here:       Myspace

Hear them here:      MIRRORS – LOOK AT ME (ysi)

THE INVISIBLE

Is there a limit to the amount of  new music you can fall in love with? I feel like I’m having about 50 affairs at once, but I must add that this lot are worth keeping the secret for. Yet another band that we were able to catch at the recent Great Escape festival, this 4-piece’s amazing music drifts into your head in a cloud of funky, but gentle basslines. Frontman Dave Okumu, with his crazy clothing and giant stature actually provide a surprisingly smooth and breezy vocal. It’s sophisticated, charming and attractive in equal parts. Skipping along with tasty beats that come towards you at a summery pace, it’s going to be a perfect seasonal soundtrack over the coming months. If comparisons help they’re like a more soulful TV On The Radio. We also are giving you a bonus track, a remix by Headman, because we love it so much. They released their self-titled debut album back in March on the Accidental label so it’s strongly suggested that you go hunt it down. They return to Brighton for the excellent Loop Festival in July, so looks like we will get a second helping this summer. We were hungry for more anyways…


Find them here:        Myspace

Hear them here:       THE INVISIBLE – LONDON GIRL (ysi)
Bonus track:             THE INVISIBLE – OK (Headman Remix) (ysi)

PANAMA KINGS

It’s been a little while since the last good Indie Rock band popped out of Northern Ireland, but the wait was worth it. This excellent 4-piece play out decent synth hooks over some loose, but energetic guitaring and a pounding beat. Don’t let their token Rock-black clothes diffuse away from the amount of funky, buzzing sounds that back their big-scale Indie music. It’s just one of those looks OK – we deeply suspect that they wear sunglasses at night. The singer has a lazy swaggering lilt, which makes for an unpolished and endearing finish to the tunes. Their new single, Golden Recruit, is out on Broken Records this week. They’ve received the useful inclusion on the Xfm evening playlist and also coverage on 6 Music, which may have pushed them past your ears in recent weeks. All this has got them noticed enough to support fellow Northern Ireland giants, Ash, on their upcoming UK tour. Perhaps that tour will be a true case of the Northern Irish rock baton finally being passed?

Find them here:        Myspace

Hear them here:       PANAMA KINGS – GOLDEN RECRUIT (ysi)

Competition time – If you want free guest pass tickets to see the Ash show in Brighton’s Concorde 2 venue on 3rd June, in which Panama Kings support, then email us at therecommenderblog@gmail.com, or leave a message in the comments box and we will enter your details into the prize hat.
Mike

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