MY FESTIVAL GUIDE FOR BN1 MAGAZINE

Glastonbury

25th-29th June 2014

www.glastonburyfestivals.com

The festival of all festivals: Glastonbury at Pilton Farm. No other has come before, no other has come near after. The mile and a half wide festival that puts the actual town of Glastonbury cowering in its shadow will take place between the 25th and the 29th July. Confirmed acts so far? Dolly Parton. Arcade Fire. Blondie. So far that’s the big guns looking good. Throw in acts like James Blake, MIA and Chance the Rapper, and it appears that they have yet again hit the nail with the best of todays and yesterday cult musicians. So if you’ve been lucky enough to get a ticket, congratulations. For the rest of us, there is second batch on offer at the end of this month. If not, there’s always Latitude.

Latitude  

17th-20th July 2014

www.latitudefestival.com

Set deep in the Suffolk countryside, Glastonbury’s little sister Latitude is in its ninth year and as always, the theatre, comedy and arts lineup are just as spectacular as the music. This family friendly, flower-power festival will be offering some of the best talent from across the world for you to feast upon, without being poked in the eye every two minutes. Headline acts include Two Door Cinema Club, The Black Keys, (surprisingly making Latitude both band’s first UK headline slots) alongside Blur’s Damon Albarn. The BBC Radio 6 Music Stage and The Lake Stage, curated by Huw Williams, is also looking strong, with names such as Lykke Li and Bondax. Giggles provided by a number of comedy figureheads such as Dara O’Brien, Simon Amstell, Al Murray and Milton Jones.

Secret Garden

24th-27th July 2014

www.secretgardenparty.com

Even Latitude even a bit too commercial for you? Secret Garden Party festival is a non-branded, non-commercial three day escape for the edgier, more unconventional of us. Described as the festival that brings out the artist in all of us, the music at Secret Garden Party doesn’t necessarily come first. However, there are some brilliant musical highlights that include David Rodigan, Little Dragon and Martha Reeves & Vandellas.

 It’s time to bin the timetables and maps, this year’s Secret Garden Party has been themed with ‘Goodbye Yellow Brick Road’. This tranquil festival will take you far away from all of modern life’s pains, and encourages you to explore further and fully submerse yourself in what they have on offer in their mystical wonderland.

 

Lovebox

18-19th July 2014

www.loveboxfestival.com

If you can’t hack all the camping and countryside that comes with most festivals, there’s always Lovebox. Set in Victoria Park over two days, Lovebox neatly compacts all the festival best bits in a tidy, urban adaption. The festival has now matured from an inner-city dance festival to one of the best exhibits of genre blurring acts, with queen of rap MIA headlining the bill. Also jam packed into the two day event are Chase and Status live, Nas, A$AP Rocky, Bonobo live and Katy B.

 

Reading & Leeds

22nd-24th August 2014

www.readingfestival.com

For those who will gladly suffer mud, moshing and mayhem to see their favourite bands live, we’re sure you’ve already got your tickets ready for this pair of festivals. With a bill you could literally do nothing other than lose your nut to, it’s hard not to see why Reading is one of the UK’s most popular festivals. With a slightly heavier mix of genres than the other events in our guide, headliners range from rock gods Queens of the Stone Age, Blink 182 and the Arctic Monkeys. All ingeniously balanced out with smaller cult names like Warpaint, Chvrches, and more rap acts than usual that include Danny Brown and Vic Mensa.

 

Sunsplash

1st-8th June 2014

www.sunsplash-festival.com

For some people however, the chances of getting caught out by the horrendous British weather-no matter what festival you’re at- sounds like hell on earth. In recent years however, ­­boutique festivals have been popping up everywhere across Europe, and luckily for us Brits who don’t fancy knee-deep mud and sodden mildew-ridden tents, these European weekends combine scorching sun, golden beaches and dynamic music festivals all in one. Top holiday & festival combo? Sunsplash in Turkey returns for its sixth year this June for a week long mixture of sunny beaches and incredible dance music. Set in a beautiful mountainous beach location in Bodrum, this resort based festival lies between a palm fringed beach and a magical creek. Just looking through photos of the stunning beach views, happy tanned faces and historical mountain scenes brings a tear to your eye. So if you’re stuck for choice on whether to splash out on festival tickets or a holiday in the sun, Sunsplash is the answer you’re looking for.

 

 

 

PREVIEW FOR 2014 ALTERNATIVE ESCAPE.

Proving to be in no way a second thought, this year’s Alternative Escape is certainly rivalling the line-up of the official strand of events at The Great Escape.

Not wanting to annoy the thousands of you who have bought your wristbands for TGE, but those without them are in for an absolute treat with a superb set of free performances across the city as part of The Alternative Escape. A whole manner of different promotion companies provide this annual sister festival alongside Lout’s ticketed three day weekend of new music, and this year 15 venues are host to some of the even newer, and even hotter, up-and-coming music. Certainly no-one will be missing out this year- in fact, it’s going to be a nightmare trying to fit it all in. As a result, here we have provided you with a quick guide to where you should be on each day from Wednesday 7thTH to Saturday 10th May, so you can stay one step ahead of who is the future’s most promising stars.

Kicking off the weekend early on the Wednesday night are a few small shows to get us punters warmed up for the days ahead. The most favourable of which looks to be a showcase from SEXSW (South East x South West) at The Prince Albert. The night will be opened by Brighton based Garden Heart from 8pm, a sunny and melodic band with a beautiful three-piece harmony, who have been much likened to Florence and the Machine. Following them, Plymouth’s rock triad Black Foxxes and new-gaze inspired The Sleepwalks keep the ball rolling until promising headliners Patron take to the stage.

Thursday however sees a full schedule across the city, but local band Common Tongues have put together what looks to be an amazing night of worldly, funky music at The Marwood coffee shop. The line-up is made up with a huge range of folkloric bands that include themselves, Time For T., The Cadbury Sisters and Ellie Ford. Shows start from 2pm and will be running late into the night.

Decisions on where to be on Friday only get harder, but two events that stand out the most are two all day and night events of the newest names around at Neighbourhood and The Pav Tav. From midday, The Pav Tav will open their upstairs and downstairs to two different sets of shows, but it’s the downstairs line-up curated by Alcopop! Vs Big Scary Monsters that seems nail it year after year. With such a huge scope of talent that includes Tangled Hair, Johnny Foreigner and JAWS, this definitely high on list of what’s not to be missed for the weekend. Spindle magazine also return with another superb set of gigs at Neighbourhood that will see performances from Norwegian electronic pop Sea Change and the highly rated Eagles for Hands.

Ending this spectacular weekend of the freshest sounds are a whole selection of different shows that will perfectly wind up the festival. Our suggestions? Get yourself down to The Tube and check out massively appraised bands Tigercub, Eighteen Nightmares at the Lux and Whales in Cubicles- see what all the fuss is about for yourself. The club will be open after months of being closed exclusively for Alternative Escape with some great line-ups across the weekend. Other highly rated sets of shows will be running across the city well into the night at venues from Beyond Retro to Northern Lights. Any short walk through town will throw a whole manner of outstanding unofficial gigs and performances, it really is looking to a brilliant weekend of the newest musicians on the cusp of fame. Just get out and have a wander, who knows what you’ll come across.

The Alternative Escape will take place over the city from Thursday 8th –Saturday 10th May.

For more information on The Alternative Escape and the full line-up, please visit:

www.greatescapefestival.com/alternative-escape/

 

More examples of Feed.- the magazine I edited.

The Lounge full rebrand, including menus, boards, logo and social media platforms.

Logo rebrand for The Lounge Cocktail Bar, Ship Street.

Client wanted an Art Deco feel. 

DRINK || DRIVE || DISNEY

Stills from our Bobby Abley shoot.

Behind the scenes of our Bobby Abley shoot.

spot my work.

FULL STEPHEN O’MALLEY REVIEW FOR BRIGHTON NOISE

If you were anywhere within the proximity of the Green Door Store on the evening of Sunday 13th April, I am more than certain that you would have been caught out by the terrifying rumble of Stephen O’Malley’s guitar reverberating throughout the North Laine. If you were actually inside the venue, the terror was overshadowed by an overwhelming feeling of spiritual epiphany. 

On our way to the venue, the anticipation was mounting as we discussed our expectations. Having seen O’Malley’s Sun O))) before, I could envisage exactly the kind of gig I was about to walk into. Only, talking to those who had seen O’Malley perform solo, we were told that he is simply louder, darker and heavier.

We arrived to catch the beginning of the second support from French black metal band, Aluk Todolo. Warily climbing through the black curtains, it was busy enough to really have to squeeze through the crowd to get a decent spot. The lighting made everything look as if you were viewing the scene in black and white; whilst the band’s runic logo flickered above the wall of Sun O))) amps behind the trio.

Their sound was surprisingly diverse, the ten minute instrumental arrangements fluctuated between a multitude of styles and genres; from grungey melodies and krautrock grooves that accentuate Matthieu Canaguier’s bass; to Shantidas Riedacker’s brooding chords that occasionally rose into hostile melodies and surly riffs. However, it appeared no one could take their eyes away from drummer Antoine Hadjioannou. Prior to the gig, I had been told the occult rockers felt that the music they played had to the power to ascend them into another world and a prolonged trance-like state. And oh how evident this was when it came to Hadjioannou. Non-stop, his energy was hypnotising and yet tiring to watch. He switched from tempos effortlessly- clanging jazz cymbals that brought about images of melancholic rain showers, to a slower, more catastrophic beat. Sporadically rising into a huge crescendo, Hadjioannou’s head tilted back, jaw slackened and eyes rolled into the back of his head; all of which signalled for that ritualistic state of summoning previously mentioned. Then out of nowhere, at the height of the music’s climax, a light bulb from above was released, came swinging down from its long wire and swung wildly in front of Hajioannou’s kit like some ghostly spectre. Pretty awesome.

The huge variety of sounds that erupted from Aluk Todolo left everyone impressed. The smoking area after their set was buzzing with a mutual spellbound awe. Everybody agreed- Hajioannou was incredible, and they were surprisingly fun, and easy-listening. You didn’t have to be the world’s biggest black metal fan to enjoy the ritualistic music of Aluk Todolo.

Ear plugs at the ready, the excited crowd hungrily moved back into the venue to settle in for O’Malley’s set. He took to the right side of the stage, poised calmly with his guitar next to the towering amps that lined the back wall. As he strummed his first echoing note, the Sun O))) amps lit up with a projection of abstract greyscale images- pulsating shapes and lines that incarnated the vibrations we were hearing. As soon as that first note was hit, it lingered, resounding the body of the crowd. You could feel the pressure of the noise knead into your face, and with an inquisitive removal of your earplugs you could hear just how loud it actually was. Really loud. The chord remained- thunderous and deafening. The crowd stood still- tranquil and immobile. Along with the projection and the feeling of utter numbness that the vibrations anaesthetised your body with, the whole set left you completely mesmerised. The words ‘sound sculpture’ that O’Malley frequently uses to describe his work had finally come to make sense- your head started to imagine other dimensions of sound that you had to tell yourself weren’t really there. Against that one drone that reverberated from O’Malley’s single guitar, haunting apparitions of vocals, melodies and effects began to mess with your grip on what you were actually hearing.

The pulsations from the huge amplifiers made the experience a physical and spiritual one; and when the hour ended, the crowd were snapped back into reality with feelings of calm and mystification. Raising his guitar to the crowd, he was met with a huge round of applause from the hypnotised audience. All in all, a captivating night that underlined the spirituality and ritualistic properties of sound and music. 

Long overdue final shots from the BN1 Magazine festival fashion editorial I styled and assisted on.

Full set and model/clothing details available at: 

http://www.bn1magazine.co.uk/festival-fashion-by-bn1-magazine/

Sneak preview of the festival fashion shoot I styled and assisted on for BN1 Magazine tonight.

STEPHEN O’MALLEY AT THE GREEN DOOR STORE
Preview for Brighton Noise here.

To those of you familiar with the drone doom metal genre, the name Stephen O’Malley will be a recognisable one. The founding member of pioneering experimental act Sun O))) and other countless names such as Burning Witch, Khanate and KTL, O’Malley’s influence on the doom sphere since the 1990’s is a profound one. O’Malley will almost certainly be bringing the 20-minute compositions of the heaviest drone and spine-numbing reverb he is famous for to his show at the Green Door Store on Sunday 13th April.
Hailing from Seattle, the 39 year old’s discography is a lengthy catalogue of collaborations, cross-overs and side projects including various journeys into the art and theatrical world. As a guitarist first and foremost, O’Malley has proven time and time again how he can turn his hand in a whole manner of production and composing feats. When Thorr’s Hammer disbanded after a short-lived six week stint in 1995, O’Malley teamed up with Greg Anderson of Goatsnake fame to found the extreme doom metal band, Burning Witch. Combining the sludge characteristics of the Melvins and a strong influence from drone godfathers Earth, Burning Witch’s amalgamation of tortured screams and melodic hymns against the backdrop of feedback were pivotal. This unusual sound was carried through into O’Malley’s and Anderson’s next project, the famed Sun O))). The resulting sound image is a hypnotic experimentation of vast expanses of quiet that intermittently erupt into resonating bass and guitar – loud, slow and heavy. Other accomplishments and alliances to adorn O’Malley’s résumé include work with American sculptor Banks Violette; album art for the likes of Emperor and Burzam; in creating labels such as Southern Lord and Ideologic Organ; and the black metal fanzine, Descent.
Supporting O’Malley: ritualistic black metal from French occult rockers Aluk Tolodo and Brighton’s own folk duo, Lutine. You can be assured that the Green Door Store’s stone walls will be resounding with some of the most thunderous and sculptured sound pressure your ears will ever be exposed to.

STEPHEN O’MALLEY AT THE GREEN DOOR STORE

Preview for Brighton Noise here.

To those of you familiar with the drone doom metal genre, the name Stephen O’Malley will be a recognisable one. The founding member of pioneering experimental act Sun O))) and other countless names such as Burning WitchKhanate and KTL, O’Malley’s influence on the doom sphere since the 1990’s is a profound one. O’Malley will almost certainly be bringing the 20-minute compositions of the heaviest drone and spine-numbing reverb he is famous for to his show at the Green Door Store on Sunday 13th April.

Hailing from Seattle, the 39 year old’s discography is a lengthy catalogue of collaborations, cross-overs and side projects including various journeys into the art and theatrical world. As a guitarist first and foremost, O’Malley has proven time and time again how he can turn his hand in a whole manner of production and composing feats. When Thorr’s Hammer disbanded after a short-lived six week stint in 1995, O’Malley teamed up with Greg Anderson of Goatsnake fame to found the extreme doom metal band, Burning Witch. Combining the sludge characteristics of the Melvins and a strong influence from drone godfathers Earth, Burning Witch’s amalgamation of tortured screams and melodic hymns against the backdrop of feedback were pivotal. This unusual sound was carried through into O’Malley’s and Anderson’s next project, the famed Sun O))). The resulting sound image is a hypnotic experimentation of vast expanses of quiet that intermittently erupt into resonating bass and guitar – loud, slow and heavy. Other accomplishments and alliances to adorn O’Malley’s résumé include work with American sculptor Banks Violette; album art for the likes of Emperor and Burzam; in creating labels such as Southern Lord and Ideologic Organ; and the black metal fanzine, Descent.

Supporting O’Malley: ritualistic black metal from French occult rockers Aluk Tolodo and Brighton’s own folk duo, Lutine. You can be assured that the Green Door Store’s stone walls will be resounding with some of the most thunderous and sculptured sound pressure your ears will ever be exposed to.

My preview for Magnum Opus Tattoo studio’s exhibition of custom Marshall Amps in Brighton’s BN1 Magazine.

THE YOUNG KNIVES @ THE HAUNT, BRIGHTON
20th March 2014

The Young Knives reaffirmed their title as ‘Britain’s Weirdest Band’ last week with a mesmerizingly eccentric performance at The Haunt. The Leicestershire born, Oxford based trio were on tour promoting their latest self-produced, self-released album Sick Octave, described by the band as their ‘ripest album yet’.
Against a backdrop of bizarrely entrancing video footage that reaped inspiration from the likes of Jan Švankmajer to Jackass, the band delivered a dizzyingly passionate post-punk performance. At times electronically poppy, and others gravely sombre, Henry Dartnell’s vocals were confident and self-assured amongst a myriad of organs and other nonspecific noises. Interludes were expansive spaces filled with experimental space-agey electronica and feedback. ‘White Sands’ stood out as a prime example of the weird, almost psychedelic-rock sound that define the band, with Dartnell and brother Thomas (or ‘House of Lords) taken in by some sort trance, chanting “I took a hundred of these”, against the urgent drum beat from Oliver Askew.
 Never overstepping the mark of ‘too-much’ theatre, the barks of poetry and visual spectaculars didn’t distract from the thrashing drums and manic guitars that formed together perfectly in ear-pleasing anthems. All of which came to a fanatical climax as Dartnell came flying through the audience in a sweaty, fervent blaze.
A breath of fresh air: a highly underrated band who thrive off life’s oddities and create non-conformist music for their own pleasure, The Young Knives ensured the packed out audience were craving more of their sheer energy and catchy tunes. Their new album, Sick Octave, definitely warrants a listening to.
Find more information about new releases and gigs from The Young Knives, visit their website:
www.young-knives.com

 

THE YOUNG KNIVES @ THE HAUNT, BRIGHTON

20th March 2014

The Young Knives reaffirmed their title as ‘Britain’s Weirdest Band’ last week with a mesmerizingly eccentric performance at The Haunt. The Leicestershire born, Oxford based trio were on tour promoting their latest self-produced, self-released album Sick Octave, described by the band as their ‘ripest album yet’.

Against a backdrop of bizarrely entrancing video footage that reaped inspiration from the likes of Jan Švankmajer to Jackass, the band delivered a dizzyingly passionate post-punk performance. At times electronically poppy, and others gravely sombre, Henry Dartnell’s vocals were confident and self-assured amongst a myriad of organs and other nonspecific noises. Interludes were expansive spaces filled with experimental space-agey electronica and feedback. ‘White Sands’ stood out as a prime example of the weird, almost psychedelic-rock sound that define the band, with Dartnell and brother Thomas (or ‘House of Lords) taken in by some sort trance, chanting “I took a hundred of these”, against the urgent drum beat from Oliver Askew.

 Never overstepping the mark of ‘too-much’ theatre, the barks of poetry and visual spectaculars didn’t distract from the thrashing drums and manic guitars that formed together perfectly in ear-pleasing anthems. All of which came to a fanatical climax as Dartnell came flying through the audience in a sweaty, fervent blaze.

A breath of fresh air: a highly underrated band who thrive off life’s oddities and create non-conformist music for their own pleasure, The Young Knives ensured the packed out audience were craving more of their sheer energy and catchy tunes. Their new album, Sick Octave, definitely warrants a listening to.

Find more information about new releases and gigs from The Young Knives, visit their website:

www.young-knives.com

 

"‘The day that I quit punk rock was the day I found out while the boys love to talk about how they aren’t sexist and how oh so fucking PC they are, it never seems cool to be a girl in the scene’ – Sarah, The Day I Quit Punk Rock, (one off zine). Women found themselves at gigs and shows being pushed to the back of the room; laughed at, mocked for being ‘dykes’ for joining in the pit and getting up on stage themselves. And thus, angry, bitter and disillusioned girls banded together with one protest in mind: girls to the front.

The only subcultural groups who have seemed to circle around the idea of creating a female safe haven for women who feel alienated, not only from society and ‘the norm’, but from male-dominated subcultures, are the Riot Grrrls (and the closely linked but not entirely related Kinderwhores) of the late 1980’s/early 1990’s.  The first group focuses more on media production, whilst the latter converse more spectacularly through their dress. Riot Grrrls are more of a subculture, whereas Kinderwhores are more of a style, and were born from the discontent they felt from not being allowed to wholeheartedly join the subcultures they wanted to. They felt alienated from most of the masculine post-punk scenes: the grunge scene stemming from Seattle, and the Hardcore scene from Washington DC, they wanted to build their own spheres rebelling against the sexism and estrangement they felt. Both became Oedipus counter cultures, and their aim was to create a safe-haven for women to navigate freely, built on the foundation of: ‘anything you can do, I can do better’. (Irving Berlin, 1946)

Angry and excluded, women wanted to build a scene where they could be ‘something more than eye-candy’ (Piano 2003: 253). A counter-counter culture, where women could move freely without judgement, where they could promote feminist virtues and discuss issues that only women could be concerned with that were not acknowledged in earlier punk movements, like sexuality, sexism, racism, pro-choice, body image, plastic surgery etc. Where they could become producers as opposed to consumers, and unite disillusioned girls in solidarity through music, zines and other productions. Piano describes the spread of Riot Grrrl as an ‘intense and magnetic’, and it created ‘alternative positions for women within subcultures… and paved the way for the development of sustained feminist subcultural activities’ (Piano 2003: 253). Bands like Bikini Kill, (see fig. 3)  L7, Bratmobile, Heavens to Betsy and Huggy Bear dominated the scene, and utilised new and upcoming technologies mixed with traditional Lo-Fi DIY punk aesthetics to be seen, and heard.”

[Extract from my case study on Women and Subcultures.]