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'Bar Pandora' EP by Bar Pandora

Review

I think that the last few years taught us about the relativity of our perceptions of time if we had not considered them before. Personally I'm still not very confident with remembering the chronology since February 2020. That's why I nearly started this review with some sort of reference to "the long awaited" debut & eponymous EP from Bar Pandora when I stopped & realised how short, in objective time Charlie Tophill's project has existed as far as we're concerned.  Her debut single came out in September & she is still well short of double figures of gigs.

In subjective time however (and that's what I go on these days), it's hard to think of an artist who has made so profound an impact in so little a time in recent years & so the "long awaited" term makes sense in that condensed frame.

It would seem that Charlie has a similar perspective: and from the sound of it, a greatly enhanced one as it is for her, her first actual completed EP "after a lifelong habit of sitting on unfinished projects" and some fifteen years planning to but not succeeding in working with Dave Jordan (aka Simply Dread) her collaborator on the EP. Seen & understood in that context, you can even better grasp the meaning of today's release.

 And what a few months it has been. As I said, the impact of Bar Pandora has been immediate & powerful. This magazine caught up with her fairly quickly in hindsight, but at the time, given how swiftly the word was spreading, it seemed like we were coming to the party late. In the meantime many other media have reviewed & praised Bar Pandora, they are in high demand for live appearances & are BBC Introducing for Coventry & Warwickshire's Band of the Month for July 2022: Who on earth else could they have selected?

And so to the EP. As I've said before, the resurgence of this form of release has interested me & even within the arcane confines of the study of EPs, there are several alternative strategies: some artists release literally every track as a standalone single resulting in an EP which acts more or less as a compilation. Charlie has gone partially down this road as previously issued & reviewed (and critically acclaimed) singles "Dear Man", "Look At Me" and "Vice Vice Vice" are present and correct. However Bar Pandora fans will not yet have had the chance to own the other track "Two Colours" and I think this was a wise move in order to reward her fans.

For those coming to the project fresh (and there are more and more by the week: especially I'd imagine after today), the EP is a great introduction. Four songs enables one to get a sense of what Bar Pandora is about while allowing the listener to luxuriate in a limited number of tracks & really get to the bottom of them: which is especially important given the complexities and nuances in the many layers of these finely wrought songs.

As explored in the reviews of the singles from the EP already released, one of the delights of Bar Pandora is how such an artistically subtle & allusive writer has also gained popular acclaim: I have cited Kate Bush before & might possibly have suggested Patti Smith, Bowie, early Roxy Music or Talking Heads, but the dichotomy between the two has long been reinforced by quite a high & impenetrable wall. No doubt the sheer originality of Bar Pandora is what is attracting much of the initial attention (to be honest most of the people I knew who started praising her to me were the sort of people who'd definitely favour the high quality mavericks & avant garde musicians over the mainstream) but she's gone: almost in the blink of an eye, straight past that point.. which is wonderful.

Without hopefully upsetting you, in terms of this review I think I'll let my previous three stand in respect of what I said at the time they came out as singles: though I've subsequently heard further elements in them & my respect for them has only increased, I think further exploration of them is your hands, reader.

The "new" song, "Two Colours" is another utterly idiosyncratic track whose roots in a cut up technique presumably account for the unexpected twists & turns which are even more idiosyncratic than the three selected to be singles (there is probably a reason for that decision to be found in the sentence). Musically it's the most adventurous of the four: very Eastern in its predominant use of tuned percussion (or that's what I take it to be though as you might expect with Simply Dread, a great bass sound suddenly pops up every now and again: not something you'd expect given the rest of the sonic picture) and vocal lines so layered over one another that you feel you've wandered into a crowded room & need to figure who's talking to whom & about what before you can make any sort of engagement with the words. Once you're there, you need repeated plays (I insist) to get to the bottom of the meaning & once again Charlie has created a track you have little choice but to return to many times. Not that the pursuit of the message of the song is a finite affair: I've played it repeatedly already & it keeps eluding me.  Is it about surface attributes of style & fashion or is she playing games around dualism here? Are we talking about contrasts & complements or even polar extremes? Knowing Charlie, we could be embracing them all: and yet despite possibly playing games, she is very insouciant about it all, suggesting that she can take it or leave it at her will. There is a compelling passage regarding the notion of free will & I guess one can take the song as a rejection of dichotomies as an entire range of options & instead forge one's own (third) alternative.

These ideas in fact slip into mantra form (quite appropriate given the music) and insinuate themselves into your mind without delay.

It's misleading in a way to concentrate on this single track, even if the others have already been discussed in the magazine, to the point of their exclusion from this review in the context of a precise four song collection. This is because all four offer us differing insights into the mind of Bar Pandora: some aspects are common to them all: not just the technical aspects of how they were created but also this didactic element. All can be taken at a very immediate level & enjoyed as each is mellifluous & warm hearted. However that's deliberately denying yourself the more cerebral pleasures of processing those questions you are being asked throughout. Questions you may not be able to fully answer, yet which stimulate other parts of the mind other than those touched by the musicality. And that brings us back to the starting point: the project name & its genesis in a collective experience of sharing philosophical enquiry & sparking a dialectic off amongst a group of friends. That's arguably what this EP is doing once again.

 I wonder what is next for Bar Pandora? I suppose one issue might be that demand from her might outstrip supply, but given what Charlie has said about the gestation of the project & her clear emphasis on artistic quality, I can't imagine her lowering her standards simply to respond to calls for more material: when the next record comes, I'm certain it will be to as high a standard as what has come to date. What I can say really confidently is that it will take me by surprise & it will act on my intellect as well as my emotions. And yours.

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"You, Not Me" by Ivy Ash

Review

With her latest single "You, Not Me" (which doesn't actually come out until August 5th but please be ready for it because it's so good), Ivy Ash has taken another considerable leap forwards in her art.

The second track (after "Third Degree" which we reviewed last November) to come out of her ‘Developing Your Creative Practice' project with Arts Council England, the song by itself justifies the title & presumed aim of the funding: Ivy is not using the money just to record her songs, she is very deliberately using the structure & philosophy of the funding to consciously move her writing into new areas which might, without this support, have been a much slower process.

Key to this seems to be the notion of ringfencing time for exploring original ideas and approaches  (which given how much she has had to balance studying, working & travelling on top of her creativity, that must have been vital) and as she puts it herself, the freedom from pressure & sense of space to create within seem to have resulted in a very relaxed & organic writing environment: "I wrote this song during my development and creation time within the third quarter of 2021, it was one of those songs that happened so naturally, the lyrics poured out and it was a process that I couldn't stop if I tried"

That sense of material pouring out of her is pretty consistent with the overall feel of her Ivy Ash work to date: that natural effervescent charm which bubbles out of your speakers. Nevertheless, if you've been following her career, you'll remember that a couple of her upbeat tracks have subsequently appeared in acoustic form later too. In neither case was I expecting the stripped back twin (and an artist who can surprise is onto a good thing) and once again, I'm wondering whether she'll be pulling off the trick again: it just seems too "right" in its current form.

This ability to create original material which from the start is capable of being plausibly presented in differing forms is an interesting & unusual one and one which will get her noticed: quite a few other people (e.g. Joe Dolman) do this regularly, but Ivy seems to include it as part of her artistic identity: perhaps linking her current pop persona with her more laid back earlier work.

But to return to "You, Not Me"… Ivy describes it as "electro pop" which I don't intend to dispute as such, it's just that to me it's got the funk: a throbbing bassline in particular which goes above & beyond what we've heard from her before. This is a real deal & that's why I think the track will exceed streaming & other success indicators of her earlier work.

Sassy to a high degree (thank you Ivy) it seized me by the scruff of the neck on a dull afternoon & invigorated me. It should do much the same to you if you give it the chance. The word "pulsating" has already been used of it, which robs me of the chance to use if fresh, but as it fits, I'm happy to pass it on.

Ivy describes it as "… fearless, confident, and no-nonsense. I believe that everyone should be free to be themselves, and I want to hammer that message home." Which she does through enthusiasm & panache rather than crude brute force.  This is someone confident in her own skin & alert to the wiles of the world enough to be aware of gaslighting & able to swerve it.

Let's face it, "You Not Me" has a very important message, a statement of intent, but the first impression it's likely to have on anyone is that as a song it's as infectious as any of the viral atrocities still in turgid circulation, but thankfully in a beneficial way.

The canon of Ivy Ash to date can be seen as a ladder: each rung higher & by now we're a long way off the ground. Ivy sounds like she has a head for the heights.

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"What Would You Change" by Luke Concannon, Darius Christian & Joshua Bailey

Review

For his first single since the great success of his ‘Ecstatic Bird in the Burning' album, Luke Concannon has created "What Would You Change" for us & released it today.

One (of many) aspects of Luke's craft which never fails to strike me is a most tricky balance he pulls off every song.

Luke is pretty much a poet when it comes to lyric writing. As my previous reviews have hopefully made clear, he loves metaphors & allusions & is seldom happy unless each song contains various layers of meaning or deals with several subjects simultaneously. Take even his most famous song: just note down how many separate  issues he's actually tackling at once.

Against this, he aims for and achieves a simplicity of focus: he certainly doesn't want to let his poetic expression prevent his messages getting through: and messages are huge in Luke's writing: I doubt if he is capable of creating something unless it has a point to him or constitutes something which he wants to share with the world.

Thus the obvious theme of "What Would You Change" is crystal clear. There is no deception at play, no sneaking unpalatable messages through under sugar coating. It's simply about making those changes in your life in order to respond to the love & needs of those around you: and in fact if you are keeping up with Luke and what he does in the broadest contexts of his life & work, you can see him as on a pilgrimage himself (and having been so for a long long time now) towards improving himself as a human being as well as an artist. There seems little more which is so central to the choices he makes & he is urging us to consider our own responses in that respect.

That said, to return to my earlier theme, this is not some simplistic or patronising piece: musically it's typical Luke: stripped back in arrangement yet I imagine horrendously difficult to replicate exactly, with chords I certainly don't claim to recognise, idiosyncratic structures, changes of rhythm & meter etc.

Not all of the arrangement is in fact down to Luke & the single is actually credited to Luke and Darius Christian & Joshua Bailey.  Darius is a Baltimore based friend of Luke's who has played with the likes of Miley Cyrus & Gwen Stefani and added all instruments (bar Joshua's drums) to Luke's basic guitar & vocal tracks.

As might have been expected, Luke began work on the song when lockdown first hit. Concerned with the universal vulnerabilities exposed by the pandemic, he sought to remind us of how we could still connect despite the crisis. Key points he wanted to communicate included "…if we dare to wake up to how amazing it is that we have this life, and each other, what might we do? It's almost too much of a miracle to be here and be alive and, the hope in me is that we will wake up to that and take the leaps of faith required, to get us to a sane, thriving, just world". And who can argue with that?

As ever, however rotten the aspects of the world he sees can be, Luke remains an eternal optimist & believes if we pull together, we can fix things. You may well like & respect "What Would You Change" but he's asking us for our help & action as well. It's about activism not passivity.

If you happen to be near Cambridge, Massachusetts tomorrow (Saturday 25th June) then you can join in the "Joyful June" launch concert for the single which will also be raising funds for a local Regeneration project, or alternatively you can share the experience at 10pm UK time on Facebook.

He is also coming over to the UK in a few months, so look out for a range of opportunities to catch hi live: some of which are already in the public domain & others remain to be announced.

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"The Daily Male" by YNES

Review

While YNES is preparing herself to play the Left Field Stage at Glastonbury at the specific invitation of its curator Billy Bragg, her brand new single "The Daily Male" has hit the streets.

Coming pretty hot on the heels of the excellent "Fake What Your Mama Gave Ya", this song takes the stiletto skewering on that previous release & applies it to multiple targets.

Generally speaking, taking on more than one subject to deflate it runs the risk of spreading your ammunition too thinly and as YNES goes for sub three minute songs to focus her attack, that means you have to be damn good at your craft or else the arrows can be shrugged off.

Fortunately YNEs is exceedingly good at this sort of thing (why on else would Billy Bragg rate her?) and as is her wont, goes on the offensive with plenty of glee, humour & panache.

Taking on the relatives of pseuds targeted last time out, YNEs expands this now to include the whole patriarchy, male violence, misogyny, racism, bigotry & the toxic media which sustains it. How ambitious is that, even if she's right?

Thankfully thousands are presumably about to hear this live so with a bit of luck it may gain her that commercial traction which she needs to break through to the next level: I think she'll do it. The fact that it seems YNES is incapable of writing a song which isn't catchy in that compelling pop-punk way also helps. That she works with John Rivers at Woodbine Street Studio, a man who has produced Buzzcocks, Swell Maps & The Shapes must also play a part.

There is a rare confidence in how YNES struts through her songs & that's part of the attraction: however sleazy the subjects are, she isn't going to be dirtied by contact with them nor discouraged by their come backs to her: YNES is on the high moral ground & knows it.

There isn't anyone in this single who doesn't deserve being taken publicly to task & if too many of them are pretty thick skinned (and thick in other ways too) then her barbs are sharp enough to pierce.

One final thought on how YNES achieves the sense of authenticity in her work: though we know she works hard on crafting her lyrics, most sound on delivery like she has just thought of what she wants to say & so it comes across like you are eavesdropping on a genuine conversation: and that's a most intriguing skill.

This moment might just big the Big One for her.

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A new song by Antonia Kirby

Review

I'm pleased to have the opportunity to tell you of a new Antonia Kirby song: the first I think I've reported on to you since "Sides of Me" in September 2020.

Strictly speaking it's not quite at the formal release stage yet: in fact it's sheltering under the working title of "Unfinished" for the time being, but such is its creator's enthusiasm for it & the fact that I am sure we don't have any rules against this sort of thing at the magazine, that I thought I'd give you a heads up.

The words apparently came to her in a dream a month or so ago & she's been working on setting them appropriately since:  and on the advice of Dan Sealey has produced her first composition in open tuning (DADGAD since you ask)

Inspired by her sister's first story telling show in London, Antonia had been musing upon untold & marginalised stories and "what might have been". This led to her creation of a concept of Nostalgia less as a feeling or perspective but more of a place for storage of stories & potential lifelines. Consequently, this led her to a sense that it's "…OK to be happy with your life but still be thoughtful about roads not taken, the "sliding doors moments".."

Running this past critical friends, one of whom fed back with "the purity in your lyrics is staggeringly beautiful"  and as no less an authority as Hannah Woof told her that "the world deserves to hear this one", Antonia really had little option but to proceed. As she put it to me: "I didn't expect this little beaut to emerge but my soul feels lighter having written it"

Thus we have a track she already considers her best work (that's a high bar isn't it?) and certainly her fresh approach to her tuning impacting on her music & an equally new "organic" way of writing words (she is approaching them more as a poet & bothering less about formal constrictions like rhyming schemes) has produced a song unlike any other she had previously  shared. Thus we can call it a development & thus it must be beyond her earlier work in these respects, though the fundamentals of voice, honesty & melodicism were in place long before.

The nature of the open tuning inevitably leads her towards a drone effect to anchor the song (and I'm aware that some readers may take that word in its derogatory sense, which would be annoying because that's not how I'm using it) and it's fun to hear how Antonia plays around that central melodic spine in a way more akin perhaps to classical folk singing than we've heard from her.

Inventive uses of this approach plus unexpected verbal constructions lead to regular surprises throughout & again this might be cited in evidence of it being an advanced example of her writing.

At this point I'm feeling a little apprehensive as she expressed to me an interest in what influences I might hear in there: a task I have set to but frankly I think I've failed. Without doubt there are clear routes back to that classic folk idiom that I mentioned: but mainly in a general way. The unusual lyrics & rhythm certainly don't bring any other specific writer instantly to mind & Antonia's singing doesn't exhibit any of the usual vocal tropes of the genre.. so there is definitely some sense of new ground being broken. Since I'd promised her that I'd have a go, I'll suggest that maybe (just maybe) I get a slight sense of someone like Joni Mitchell (mainly because of the register both sing in & for the unusualness of the song: otherwise the Englishness makes a strong distinction), maybe a bit of Laura Nyro,  a pinch of Carla Olson or Thea Gilmore  and since I reviewed Roxanne de Bastion the other week, there are comparisons to be made there too. Perhaps.

Ultimately though all these feeble efforts at comparison fail & whatever Antonia feels were the influences upon  "Unfinished", only she knows & can reveal if she so wishes. I'd hope that she'd take it as a compliment that I failed at the task.

Whatever form the song eventually emerges in, I think though that I'm happy to validate her assessment of it & hopefully it will attract the attention her talent deserves & her friends believe it & she merit.

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"Vice Vice Vice" by Bar Pandora

Review

In the relatively short period of time (about five weeks) since I reviewed the most recent single release "Look At Me" from Bar Pandora, things have moved on a pace: as was clearly happening at the time of that review.

Firstly I was really pleased to catch them live for the first time (please see my review for 8th of this month) and that evening also evidenced that a nationally known touring act (Roxanne de Bastion) had Bar Pandora sufficiently on their radar to include them on the bill. Beyond that, the music is being picked up even further afield and getting featured on playlists on an international basis.

The eponymous debut EP is due out on 5th July and as another step along the road towards that, today the final anticipatory single "Vice Vice Vice" has been issued.

Showcasing yet another facet of Charlie Tophill's lyrical & musical interests, this one probably sits nearer to the pop end of her personal spectrum and may in fact be the one to entice into her world those for whom the ambiguities & gnomic allusions of the earlier singles were some form of barrier.

That, emphatically is not to suggest that Charlie has lurched towards the mainstream here: far from it. She still seems to be using her cut up technique & dancing gracefully around her subject (which apparently is "..a remonstrance to a neglectful lover..") offering enigmatic clues to understanding it. Adopting on this occasion a rather seraphic performance style (though a rather angsty second vocal line meshes with it towards the end), the protagonist is, it would seem, intent on occupying the higher moral ground & not demeaning herself by losing her cool in public: reproachful yes, abusive no. Educational? Quite possibly.

This cool disdain is reflected in the music which grooves along warmly yet is so full of ever changing detail and structure that after a couple of plays you wonder how on earth they keep the groove going so well with so much shifting & devote the next couple of plays to analysing just that. Or alternatively you could simply play it & enjoy it which is probably a healthier choice. She is self identifying as "alt pop" after all & clearly reveling in it herself (apparently it's one of her own favourites to perform).

It would seem from Charlie's comments ("..It's about that push and pull you feel when you're putting everything into a relationship and still being taken for granted..") that there is a significant element of catharsis for her in singing about it & so it's to her credit that she's gone down this almost counter intuitive route of instead of screaming & raging, keeping her cool & demonstrating maturity and superiority of emotional intelligence: not alas the immediate reaction of most of us, but without doubt a better one in both short & long terms. That Charlie uses the word "..unapologetic.." in relation to the song is significant too I suspect. I don't think what she is saying in the song is ever going to be regretted by her & if whoever it's specifically directed at gets to hear it, I trust they'll take note & set their house into better order. I also applaud the clever use she makes of the double meaning: exposing the transgressive behaviour but also using the metaphor of being clasped woundingly tight.

It also pretty much ensures that building on the attention Bar Pandora is already getting, "Vice Vice Vice" should get her the most airplay of her career to date: if people "get" the words, that presumably is a highly desirable bonus. I suppose at best there is a fine line between "multi-layered" work & "subversive" and possible the latter exists only in any intention of the writer: however I'd like to think I find (and applaud) various degrees of subversion in the output of Bar Pandora.

Oddly enough, once I heard the story of how Charlie had come up with the name for the project, my immediate reaction was to think of another legendary café habituated by the very artistic which also gave its name to a band: Cabaret Voltaire…… maybe just a coincidence so not particularly worth mentioning had it not been for the fact that possibly their biggest single was also a single word triply cited: "Nag Nag Nag": the coincidence is now more striking though I'm at a loss to say exactly what it means (if anything) and although both bands share an interest in electronic music and each uses the titular device to amplify the intensity, the 1979 song is certainly much more abrasive on the surface (though arguably less so if you delve deeper)….. However it's little moments like this which can hint at wider patterns out there.

If like me & a rapidly growing number of other right minded people you'd like to catch Bar Pandora live, you can see them at the Elevate Festival on 16th July at the Criterion Theatre, Earlsdon to commemorate the 50th anniversary of Coventry Haven & raise funds for them and with Batsch at Just Dropped In on 6th August.

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"Hush! A Summer Celebration"

Review

Last evening at Earlsdon Carnegie Community Library saw the "Hush! A Summer Celebration" event, another in the series of collaborations between the Library & "Hot Music Live Presents" and the first one since the announcement of the Library's national recognition in the shape of the Queen's Award for Voluntary Service: a marvellous & deserved accolade for the success of Julie Rubidge, Lucy Winter & the team at the charity which now runs it in rescuing the Library from closure, restoring it to glory & promoting such a range of community focused events including "Hush!"

Showcasing a range of artistic skills including music, the evening was another highly successful one, opening with Force of Love (Spiros Abatis) who offered us fruits of his creativity in two distinct formats: music & poetry.

This act was something of a revelation for me: recommended by Izzie herself (and he's also worked with Joe as it happens), I hadn't previously seen him perform and he is certainly a very dynamic & arresting showman who delivers his material in a way to stimulate audiences.

 If you check out his work online, you may well consider his starting point to be the more experimental end of music, but this really doesn't mean that it's so avant garde that it's inaccessible. The forms are easily engageable with & can be enjoyed on an immediate level, though it's clear how important the content & message are to him: close attention to the words brings additional rewards.

 His guitar playing (he admitted to being at the loud end of the acoustic spectrum) had many flamenco aspects to it & was an interesting mixture of the instant & the melodic. How words were passionate & gave some sort of clue to the name for his act: the concept of Love permeated the songs and poems whether for each other or the world we inhabit.

 I am not sure when I last witnessed a poem of such length being recited (though given the nature of his performance "enacted" might fit the bill more closely) without error: quite an achievement & one which consequently had a proportionate impact on the audience. A second one, also as arresting in scope & imagery was one he was working on so I think we'd all readily accept his need to read more of that one out from the text.

 I gather he'd not performed for around three years, but judging by his act & the reaction, any potential rustiness was blown away & I hope to catch him again.

 The second  item on the bill was a look at the novel writing of local author J T Wilson who gave two readings from his most recent release "Impossible Animals: or Other Outstanding Attractions" and answered questions from the audience and a handful from me on both this book, his earlier "Cemetery Drive" and his craft in general.

I wasn't sure how comfortable the audience might be in terms of asking questions (hence my preparation of a lot of my own just in case) but I was delighted to be reassured. Stimulated by the readings: which were dynamically performed with the experience and skills of someone used to the stage, there were effectively no barriers to break down & we went straight into a discussion of cryptozoology without any need for prompts etc: if the audience had not previously been familiar with the concept, they picked it up instantly from the reading. In fact so impressed with what they saw, two separate audience members suggested that Joe take this performance to the Edinburgh Fringe: an idea I suspect he'd not considered beforehand but took away as food for thought.

 Many readers will have been aware of Joe's work as a musician: featured in this magazine & in several incarnations on various volumes of "Hot Music Live Presents". How that writing interacted with his prose writing was another area those present were interested in exploring & he gave detailed accounts not only of how the different modes offered distinct opportunities to express himself, but also on his writing technique: he brought along a notebook in which initial vignettes and passages were conceived (in longhand!) and recorded for later combination into longer work and how elements of Pop Culture were so ubiquitous in his writing.

 

The headlining act, Izzie Derry will need no introduction to most readers of the magazine as we have covered her releases & gigs many times. However, although her EP launch at The Tin in March 2020 was literally the last live performance I saw let alone reviewed for a long time, it's still over two years since I've caught one of her gigs.

 And to take the theme of her closing song "Learn To Grow", her music has evolved in that period (knowing Izzie that's not a great surprise). I don't actually mean that her new material is a development (she took time out from recording her latest album to play this gig), though the evidence supports that. Izzie has mainly written the new songs on piano and as performing on that instrument last night wasn't very practical, we got a mostly older set of guitar compositions (and so got the classic Izzie show of continuous swaying motion which is so charismatic yet hard to photograph) and it is these which have developed.

 I mentioned some years ago when she unveiled her full band lineup how powerful her sound had consequently come (and at that point she started playing a Telecaster on stage) and that certainly informed recent releases which were with her band. That makes perfect sense I hope: what wasn't so predictable was the residual effect on her solo acoustic back catalogue.

 At one point last night she suggested that her songs could broadly be categorised as "sad" or "angry" (and I'm pretty sure I'd not really grasped that in any of my reviews: not least due to the beauty which to some extent distracts from that) and to a significant degree the latter has predominated in her more recent writing (I gather that it would be true for much of the new album too). Thus I was perhaps not too surprised when a song as stunning & powerful as "Fire" which is definitely an "angry" one came across as compellingly in a solo version as the band one I'd only ever previously heard her play it live: what hit me more was an even earlier song such as "Give Me A Reason To Stay" whose angry undertones are now much more to the fore: transforming my understanding of the song (which has been in my awareness for at least five years).

 Generally that dynamic applies to the changes Izzie has wrought & impacts in various ways: songs have certain elements of menace in their playing with more ominous riffs and even more ominous dramatic pauses. Her voice too has evolved: still confident in her upper register which has always been a characteristic of her singing, now her lower range is coming to the fore more: perhaps stimulated by the changes in writing style, or maybe to some extent exploration: when I raised the issue with her afterwards, she primarily credited a desire to refresh the older material with any changes she had made to performing it.

 That said, Izzie has written two songs on the guitar for the new album & gave us our first chance to hear one live and it was a most potent one: definitely from the "angry" category and delivered appropriately. I gather that much of the album is in this mode & apparently informed by personal experiences: I did raise my condolences with Izzie at having gone through negative interactions in this manner, but her response was that at least she got some powerful songs out of it, so if she can process them so positively then I think we can just sit back & enjoy her artistry without too much angst on her behalf.

 What we are getting is a tendency not to mince her words nor hold back lyrically: I don't think anyone will be mistaking her messages. That said, it's Izzie Derry we are discussing here and though her gloves may be off these days, the result is not mindless abuse but considered reproaches to those who've wronged her & a disinclination to demean herself by sinking to their level: above all she's not abandoned the compassion & humanity of her work and it now sits alongside defiance.

 Izzie Derry on solo acoustic guitar is a stunning live act in such a beautiful & intimate space which actively rewards her sound & strengths & the audience were greatly moved by what they experienced. However great last night was, I wonder how often we'll be getting to hear it in the future? Given her live work in recent years & the nature of the new album, it's hard to imagine solo gigs like this being the norm: and that's fine by me as I'm glad she's moving on & developing her potential. That such nights have a special magic is undeniable & if you've never caught one, I suggest that you take advantage of others she might play. Equally Izzie is clearly (however much she is still beloved in Coventry & Warwickshire) a more national name now: she has a professional & personal base in Brighton is playing all over the country, building a wider audience: no wonder her album will be funded by her successful Kickstarter campaign.

 Her next local gig is on 29th June for Sofar Sounds & I assume that will be a solo performance too….

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"Penthouse Complex" by The Eyes of Isabel

Review

Fresh out from The Eyes of Isabel is their latest dramatic piece, "Penthouse Complex".

Created as ever at Woodbine Street Studio with Eddy Hewitt on guitar, bass & drum programming, John Rivers on backing vocals (and I imagine keyboards too) and Sam from The Ripchords on additional guitar, as ever presentation of the finished song in a cinematic medium is vital to writer, founder & lead vocalist Tony Ally & so I advise you to access it first via the usual Andy McGeechan directed video via this link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wJI4bmJhmqQ

This stars Rob Millar, Tracey Gillan, Tony Ally, Tracey Skarzynska, Lyndsey Joplin & Wendy and was shot at Draycote Water, Tile Hill South, Yarmouth Gardens, Canley, Allesley Park, The Slug & Lettuce, Cuckoo Lane & Belgrade Plaza Car Park and extends the sybaritic lifestyle depicted in the song into something definitely less legal and in keeping with other films in this series, resembles a caper movie with the penthouse denizens eventually bought to book. Taking weeks to prepare & then a fortnight or so to shoot, the end justifies the effort taken.

Nevertheless, the song, while not going quite as far down that route, makes its disdain for those living selfish lives & isolating themselves from the rest of humanity clear, in the nicest possible way.

Musically it's an interesting & catchy concoction which opens with a "Sergeant Pepper" introduction which morphs into something nearer to the Television Personalities in style while throwing in another "Pepper" interlude in Indian mode en route.

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"Wes Finch: A Life in Music" by Russell Whitehead

Review

If you are an admirer of the visual artistry of Russell Whitehead or the musical artistry of Wes Finch, or indeed of both as I am, then I'm sure ...
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"Shelter" and "Focus" by Levi Washington

Review

Out right now from that hard working artist Levi Washington (currently he seems to be organising around 60% of all live music in the area covered by ...
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Overpass - Debut UK Headline Tour & Single

News

Ascending Midlands indie outfit Overpass preview their forthcoming debut UK headline tour with the release of a brand new single, ‘Changes'.
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"I Need More Time" by Dave Pepper

Review

Out today from Dave Pepper is a new song called "I Need More Time" .
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"Psychic Visions" by Massasauga

Review

Way back in the day, Hallowe'en was a rather different sort of festival, a sort of development of the pagan Samhain harvest festival but ...
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'Black Narcissus' by Daffod'i'll

Review

Extremely hot on the heels of Daffod'i'll's tenth solo album ‘Brown Nosey' (which I reviewed at the end of September) comes ...
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"Good Girl" by Rheo Uno

Review

It seems only yesterday that I reviewed Rheo Uno's single "Señorita" for you (it was about a month ago in fact) and here we are again for her ...
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‘No Hope Without Love' EP by The Rising

Review

If you have been reading my more recent reviews of The Rising, then it will not be news to you that they've been steadily releasing each of the ...
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"Strangers" by Joe Dolman

Review

Out today from Joe Dolman is his latest single which rejoices in the title of "Strangers", the follow up to the successful "Real World" which itself ...
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"Wishing Well" by Danny Ansell

Review

It's a great & somewhat rare privilege to give you as much notice as I am here with Danny Ansell's next release "Wishing Well" as it ...
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"Smile" by Avidfan

Review

It was back in June that I introduced you to the debut single of Avidfan (the nom de musique of King of the Alps/Special Brew/Some Kinda ...
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‘After the Fire' by Blue Moon Birds

Review

I hope that you enjoyed the Maz Corry song "In This Living" on ‘Hot Music Live Presents Volume Five'?  I'd like to think that you also ...
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"HIGHHIGHHIGH" by Euan Blackman

Review

Just over a month since we told you about his "Sinking" single, Euan Blackman will be releasing his third one "HIGHHIGHHIGH" tomorrow (Friday).
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‘Protest Songs 1924-2012' by The Specials

Review

Fresh out from The Specials is a new album called ‘Protest Songs 1924-2012'.
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Barnabus - The Nelson Club, Warwick

Review

What a night at The Nelson Club in Warwick for this the final ever gig by Leamington's very own rock legends Barnabus on the 50th Anniversary of ...
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'Brown Nosey' by Daffod'i'll

Review

I mentioned as a supplementary note in my review of Saturday's gig at The Tin that I encountered ‘Hot Music Live Presents' artist ...
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"Under Me" by Abz Winter

Review

That irrepressible artist Abz Winter is back on 8th October with her latest single "Under Me", her follow-up to "Money" from July.
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"The Lucky One" by Kenzie Webley

Review

For those of you who were wondering about the activities of that rapidly rising local star Kenzie Webley, I am able to bring you up to speed.
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The Catenary Wires, Pete Astor, The Pristines and The Sunbathers

Review

The other day, while reviewing the new Chessi O'Dowd single, "The Pines", I commented that the first gig I had scheduled which was cancelled by ...
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Beans on Toast ‘SURVIVAL OF THE FRIENDLIEST'

News

Beans on Toast ANNOUNCES NEW ALBUM: ‘SURVIVAL OF THE FRIENDLIEST' - OUT 1 DECEMBER 2021, VIA BOT MUSIC LISTEN TO NEW SINGLE: "A BEAUTIFUL ...
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"You Had It All (Reimagined)" by The Rising

Review

For those of you following the incremental release of The Rising's ‘No Hope Without Love' EP (and I hope that's you all), you may ...
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"Real World" by Joe Dolman

Review

It's been above a year since I last got to review a Joe Dolman release (his collaboration with Millie Tilby "Let's Go Home") so it's ...
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Made In Coventry

News

Made in Coventry celebrates the incredible range of music artists and styles in our city and across Warwickshire.
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"The Pines" by Chessi O'Dowd

Review

The last twenty or so months have to some extent made us all consider various aspects of time I think: such as how long has elapsed since we last did ...
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"Señorita" by Rheo Uno

Review

I get extremely intrigued by what artists occasionally say about their own work.
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"10-46" by Massasauga

Review

It was back in April when out of their "7 Nights of Terror" competition, Massasauga fans voted the chilling "Switchblade" to be their single.
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The 'Hauntings' EP by Year Without A Summer

Review

It's been nearly a year since we last reviewed a Year Without A Summer  release in these pages (and the last couple of years have come close to ...
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"Sinking" by Euan Blackman

Review

On 2nd September, Euan Blackman will be releasing "Sinking", his follow up to the widely praised and popular "24 Hours 7 Days" and I gather it will ...
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"Polaroids of Yesteryear" by Levi Washington

Review

To say that I was stunned by the new Levi Washington single "Polaroids of Yesteryear" (which you can hear at 1800 tomorrow, the first of September, ...
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"Never Gone" by Lemon Boy

Review

"Never Gone", the follow up to his very well received "I Want Your Blue Sky" single from May, will be the latest release from Lemon Boy on 1st ...
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Wendy James - Queen High Straight Tour

News

WENDY JAMES RELEASES MUSIC VIDEO FOR ‘THE IMPRESSION OF NORMALCY' - WATCH HERE  + ANNOUNCES UK TOUR DATES FOR AUGUST, SEPTEMBER + OCTOBER ...
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The Mintakaa Collective live at the Daimler Powerhouse

Review

If you enjoyed "Auriga" by Mintakaa on ‘Hot Music Live Presents Volume Six' then it's a fair assumption that you'd be interested in ...
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Mugun Grips The Scene With The Release Of ‘Underglow'

News

Establishing himself as one of Coventry's hottest exports, mugun grips the scene with the release of 'underglow'.
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'I Stripped Bare' by Daffod'i'll

Review

On today, his birthday (not a coincidence I imagine), Daffod'I'll  has released his ninth solo album entitles ‘I Stripped Bare' (a ...
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‘Seven Signs of a Soul' by Ian Todd

Review

As prophesised in our recent reviews of his singles "Don't Forget To Breathe" (in June) and "What Goes In Is What Goes Out" (last month), the ...
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Wes Finch on Stratford Bandstand

Review

I'm sorry to say that I'd never previously attended one of the summer Sunday afternoon concerts on the Bandstand in Stratford before but ...
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"Show Me" by Rheo Uno

Review

Considerably less than a month ago, I was strongly suggesting to you that you should check out the new Rheo Uno single "Wife Me?" yet already the ...
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"Dreamstate" by Free Galaxy

Review

Fresh out from Free Galaxy is their latest single "Dreamstate", though it is far from business as usual for this popular band.
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Leamington Spa Art In The Park (Saturday)

Photo gallery

Joyous return to live music at premier Warwickshire event, Leamington Art In The Park.
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"Highway to the Lost & Found" by The Rising

Review

True to their mission, The Rising are back with a new single "Highway to the Lost & Found"  (due out on 3rd September) just over a month after the ...
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"Art in the Park" 2021

Photo gallery

To be honest, as delighted as I was that live music in some quantity was back at an expanded "Art in the Park" (two stages rather than the usual ...
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"2 Tone and Rock Against Racism" event

Review

In my recent review of the "Women Pioneers" event at Coventry Cathedral, I drew your attention to its companion event centring on the 2 Tone ...
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LEAMINGTON SPA ART IN THE PARK 2021 (SATURDAY)

Photo gallery

It's been a long two years but I finally got back to a little live music photography on the Saturday of Leamington's Art In The Park ...
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"God's Little Punching Bag" by YNES

Review

Springing out of the blue somewhat is the new single from YNES called "God's Little Punching Bag" which burst onto our consciousness this ...
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"Bring Back the Feeling" by Danny Ansell

Review

The most recent occasion on which we reported on Danny Ansell and his music was back in April, with the release of his "Slice of Cake" single.
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‘24 Hours 7 Days' by Euan Blackman

Review

Fresh in from Alcester based artist Euan Blackman is his brand new release "24 Hours 7 Days": just when I imagined that the products of lockdown ...
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'Cocoon' by Tigermask

Review

When I wrote last month about the latest single from Tigermask, "Mirtazapine", I told you quite a lot about its parent album ‘Cocoon' which in ...
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"Wife Me?" by Rheo Uno featuring Chxmpion

Review

Unfortunately, it has been over a year since I last wrote about a Rheo release in the magazine and a similar timespan since her "Down For You" ...
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"Unbounded" by Dean MacDonald

Review

Following the very successful release of "Inflamed " in late May, today, Dean MacDonald shares with us the next track from his recent 14 Records ...
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‘I Hear Voices' EP by Molotov Souls

Review

Many thanks to Fred from Molotov Souls for sending me their latest EP called ‘I Hear Voices' which they made with Matt Waddell at 14 Records.
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"Female Pioneers"

Review

Saturday night was another real landmark for me: my first Saturday evening out since the pandemic struck.
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Record Store Day 2021

Review

It is unfortunate that catching every artist on a multi musician event isn't always possible, but the short time I was able to be at the Record ...
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"What Goes in is What Goes Out" by Ian Todd

Review

The time is rapidly approaching (16th of July to be precise) when "What Goes in is What Goes Out", the sophomore single from his ‘Seven Signs of a ...
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"Money" by Abz Winter

Review

As her follow up to the popular "B.
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"My Phone" by Hannah Woof

Review

During the last sixteen bizarre months or so, coverage of Coventry & Warwickshire artists in these pages has taken on unusual patterns.
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Motofest 2021

News

I'm much obliged to Rob Halligan who has been in touch with me to ask me to pass onto readers of "Hot Music Live" the details of Motofest 2021: ...
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"Break The Chains" by The Rising

Review

I hope you have been following the progression of singles released by The Rising from their upcoming ‘No Hope Without Love' EP?  Following ...
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Ellie Gowers at Kenilworth Arts Festival

Review

Strange and wonderful times: I find myself today writing my second live report inside a week.
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"Rain Again" by Ivy Ash

Review

And so here we are at the third single from the irrepressible Ivy Ash, namely "Rain Again" (which is released on 2nd July) though really it's ...
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Stone Bear at Leamington Canal Festival

Review

It seems almost unreal and a bit transgressive to find myself writing a live review after so many months of reviewing the recorded activities of ...
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"Mirtazapine" by Tigermask

Review

It has been a while since we were able to feature Tigermask in the magazine (and in the interim, his standalone track "Timeless" appeared on ‘Hot ...
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"Come By" by Taylor-Louise

Review

It's been quite a while since I had the pleasure of reviewing a Taylor-Louise release: in fact it was about eighteen months ago when the title ...
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"Too Long" by Contacts in the North

Review

You might perhaps have spotted that the track of the week from BBC Introducing in Coventry & Warwickshire  is the new single by Contacts in the ...
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"Psalm 2" by Rob Halligan

News

Although his spirituality informs & enriches virtually all his work, in April 2019 Rob Halligan released a very explicitly sacred collection of songs ...
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"Pray With Me" by Chasing Deer

Review

I have not had a chance to review a Chasing Deer release for you since "Scared" came out in December, so I'm pleased to do so now in reaction to ...
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"Wonderful Day" by King of the Alps

Review

In one of those interesting serendipities which real life offers us occasionally, not twenty four hours after reviewing the debut solo single by King ...
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"Always Be Coventry" by Avidfan

Review

If you do not yet know the name of Simon Ward as well as you might do, then you could do worse than check out the credits on the various ‘Hot Music ...
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"Totally Together" by Brothers From Another Mother featuring Kirsty Brewerton

Review

Fresh out today is the song "Totally Together" by Brothers From Another Mother featuring Kirsty Brewerton and recorded at 14 Records in Leamington.
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"Gloriana" by Paul Mccormack

Review

Today Paul Mccormack has a new release for us, "Gloriana", a follow up to "Thoughts" (which I advised you of last month) and which can be found at ...
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'Leamington LAMP Album Volume 1'

Review

I appreciate that I've introduced reviews before saying that I'm excited about them, but I'm afraid it's the truth: I review what ...
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'Hot Music Live Presents Volume Six'

News

Today saw the release of "Hot Music Live Presents Volume Six", the follow up to the previous five albums in the series: another free download album ...
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"Addiction" by Aaron Woodhouse

Review

I last reviewed Aaron Woodhouse back in March when he released "Fire In The Air" as a single: now, he has followed it up with "Addiction" which is ...
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"B.S." by Abz Winter

Review

Abz Winter has only gone and done it again hasn't she? I love the way that although her game has never needed raising (it's been at the top ...
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"Bruise You Left" by The Rising

Review

The 4th of June marks the release date of the second single from the upcoming 'No Hope Without Love' EP by The Rising, namely "Bruise You ...
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"Maybe With You" by The Boy Who Invented Everything

Review

It's with a great deal of pleasure that I write this particular review.
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"The Calm" by Dave Pepper

Review

The latest release from Dave Pepper is called "The Calm" and is now available for you too to enjoy via this link: https://davepepper1.
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"Don't Forget To Breathe" by Ian Todd

Review

Having reviewed "Hour Glass" (an hour long ambient piece ) by Ian Todd last summer, I am now pleased to say that I can return to his work again, this ...
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"Inflamed" by Dean MacDonald

Review

This is exciting: we have often told you about releases from & performances by one of the area's most respected & popular bands The Session, but ...
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"Pensacola" by Jack Blackman & Chessi O'Dowd

Review

Here's a slightly rhetorical question: what is better than a new release by one of the most respected & popular Coventry & Warwickshire artists? ...
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"I Want Your Blue Sky" by Lemon Boy

Review

"I Want Your Blue Sky" , the next single by Lemon Boy (Luke Bates) is not in fact released until 26th May, but already, thanks to some advance ...
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"Faker" by Abz Winter

Review

It's actually been a year since we shared the news about "Jump" by Abz Winter with you, a period of time between releases which would have ...
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"Thoughts" by Paul Mccormack

Review

Although I have written about singer/songwriter/multi-instrumentalist Paul Mccormack in the magazine before (in the context of a Merrymaker live ...
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"Peaceful Warrior" by Lemon Tones

Review

An artist whose work I have not yet previously had the pleasure of describing to you is Lemon Tones (the name under which James Temple is currently ...
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"Used To Be" by YNES

Review

When reviewing the last YNES single (the eviscerating "Better Job", which also featured Ace Ambrose), among several adjectives I used, one was ...
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"A Friend" by In Emerald Sea

Review

This is probably the quickest turn around of a review I've yet managed: not only was I unaware of this song an hour before I began writing this, ...
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'Let's Have Another One' by Firedaze

Review

I have long enjoyed Firedaze  as a live act but I'm sorry to say have not reviewed any of their releases until now: I'm glad to repair ...
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"Loveable" by Kenzie Webley

Review

I'm delighted to report to you the release of a new single by Kenzie Webley on 21st May, namely "Loveable" .
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"The Coming of Age" by Ace Ambrose

Review

Any new release from Ace Ambrose must have the characteristics of creating anticipation & wonder in our minds: what on earth will she come up with ...
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"Slice of Cake" by Danny Ansell

Review

Despite his skill at honing crowd pleasing anthems, the reality of Danny Ansell's songwriting is the subject matter he covers is actually very ...
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Chubby and the Gang - 40-date UK tour includes Coventry

News

CHUBBY AND THE GANG ANNOUNCE MAMMOTH 40-DATE UK & IRELAND TOURNEW SINGLE 'LIGHTNING DON'T STRIKE TWICE' - WATCH THE VIDEO HEREDOUBLE ...
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"Change" by Jonny Olley

Review

If you enjoyed Jonny Olley's debut single "Slow" which we reviewed here in January (and which was featured on ‘Hot Music Live Presents Volume ...
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MARTIN KEMP - ‘BACK TO THE 80s' DJ SET

News

Martin Kemp's 'Back To The 80s Party' returns to LEAMINGTON SPA ASSEMBLY ROOMS, Leamington Spa this Summer!Spandau Ballet star ...
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"Calico Jack" by Alchemista

Review

For their first single release of 2021, Alchemista are offering us a tale of piracy on the high seas in the form of "Calico Jack".
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"Switchblade" by Massasauga

Review

You may remember when back in February Massasauga invited you to participate in their "7 Nights of Terror" wherein they shared teasers of seven songs ...
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"You Had It All" by The Rising

Review

That marvellously prolific band The Rising (Chris Logan & Chantelle McAteer) are continuing their highly commendable campaign to not let COVID19 ...
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'Coventry Cathedral - Easter '21' by Rob Halligan

Review

Fresh out today is a live album of the special lockdown gig which Rob Halligan played at Coventry Cathedral with the help of Ewan Cameron and Chris ...
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"Around This Town" by Ross Darby

Review

Today is the release day for the new Ross Darby single "Around This Town", his first since the much applauded "Rose" which came out in July 2020 and ...
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"Gimmie Some Space" by Shanghai Hostage

Review

It is literally only a single month since I reviewed the most recent Shanghai Hostage single "Convent" for you, yet here today am I writing about its ...
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"Oops" (Acoustic) by Ivy Ash

Review

I was delighted last month to describe to the debut single by Ivy Ash (the new sparkling pop persona of Bethany Dyson) called "Oops".
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"Fire In The Air" by Aaron Woodhouse

Review

A very recent addition to my awareness of the local music scene has been Aaron Woodhouse.
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‘If This Is the End' by Project Blackbird

Review

I was always a fan of the band Bluebird Parade: a very eclectic and versatile six piece band whose combined talents were able to create all sorts of ...
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"Live 2020" (edited selection) by Wes Finch

Review

Very slightly more than twelve months ago I reported to you on Wes Finch's Leap Year gig: a special event to mark the four yearly occasion & to ...
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"In The Darkness" by Ollie Bond

Review

Ollie Bond is one of those talented artists who seems capable of swerving the "quality/quantity" debut by releasing very high quality singles at a ...
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"Bigger Than Me" by Rob Halligan

Review

Today marks the release of the new Rob Halligan single entitled "Bigger Than Me", a swift follow up to his ‘Christmas Time' EP and as ...
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"Convent" by Shanghai Hostage

Review

Shanghai Hostage are continuing their long running excellent form & defying COVID with another prime release this morning namely their new single ...
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"Auriga" by MINTAKAA

Review

I'm always most appreciative of being tipped off about interesting local music which I had not previously been aware of, so thank you to Ian ...
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"The South" by Wilde

Review

Not only did ‘Hot Music Live Presents Volume Four'  artists Wilde (check out "Wasted" if you've not already done so) manage to put ...
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"In Absence" by Lemon Boy

Review

If you enjoyed hearing the "elegant & graceful " (as our review described it) "Flamingo"  by Lemon Boy on ‘Hot Music Live Presents Volume ...
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‘Is This Thing On?' by John Connearn

Review

This afternoon saw the release of the brand new John Connearn EP called  ‘Is This Thing On?', his first record since "Push & Pull" which came ...
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The ‘Parting Breath' EP by Ellie Gowers

Review

One of the many frustrations of the past year has been the loss of momentum in the careers of various local artists who were so obviously on a roll: ...
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"Class War" by Dispensable People

Review

Just out from local dissidents Dispensable People is their new single entitled "Class War".
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"Better Job" by YNES featuring Ace Ambrose

Review

Now this is very exciting….
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"Oops" by Ivy Ash

Review

Back in November, I introduced you to Ivy Ash, the sensational new pop persona of Bethany Dyson.
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"Whereabouts Unknown" by Jack Blackman

Review

After his most impressive prolific run of form since the music scene was turned upon its head, from "Self Isolation Song" (which is also on ‘Hot ...
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'Hot Music Live Presents Volume Five'

News

We are delighted to announce the release of 'Hot Music Live Presents Volume Five': eighteen more totally original tracks by Coventry & ...
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"LOUD" by Electrik Custard

Review

I was greatly & very pleasantly surprised by the unexpected release yesterday of a new single "LOUD" by Electrik Custard featuring Mina Minné.
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New release from Holly & the Hounds

Review

Readers of the magazine will have followed the evolution of Holly & the Hounds from roots in Gloria Sunset & Retroville duo formats into a full band ...
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Catching up with Luke Concannon

Feature

As I'd been in contact with Nizlopi singer/guitarist Luke Concannon regarding the release of his brand new solo album 'Ecstatic Bird In The ...
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'Ecstatic Bird In The Burning' by Luke Concannon

Review

One of the most anticipated albums to be issued by a Coventry & Warwickshire artist has to be 'Ecstatic Bird In The Burning' which Luke ...
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"Each Time My Heart is Broken" by Ex Lover

Review

Well that's two surprises of rather different sorts on consecutive mornings for me.
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"Don't Want Anything But More" by Satsangi

Review

During these turgid times when there is a distinct danger of every successive day seeming like its predecessor, it's helpful to be surprised now ...
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'Postcards Home' by Maz Corry

Review

Good morning to you all: I'd like to tell you today about the new album from Stratford based Maz Corry,  ‘Postcards Home' which was ...
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"Love Again (Show You Care)" & 'Retrospective' by Rosetta Fire

Review

Not surprisingly, it is a while since I've been able to report to you on Rosetta Fire.
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'The Righteous Jazz' by The Mechanicals Band

Review

We cover some excellent artists in the magazine who produce some great material.
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'Reflection' EP by Rob Lee Thompson

Review

It's uplifting to start a new year by reviewing another local artist whom I've not yet written about in the magazine & on this occasion, ...
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"You The Creator" by River of the Dog

Review

Good news from River of the Dog who on 29th of this month are releasing a brand new single entitled "You The Creator"  (hopefully you'll ...
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"Stay At Home" by Carrick

Review

This morning's news is that Carrick have just released their new single "Stay at Home", which will later appear on their forthcoming second ...
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"Another Sunset" by Caleb Murray

Review

Today Caleb Murray releases his new single, "Another Sunset" a year & a half after his previous record, the ‘Stories From a Sunny Side' album ...
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"Castle With The Lights On" by Shannon Stevenson

Review

Within a month of telling you about "Midnight" by Shannon Stevenson, I find myself in the fortunate position of being able to now give you a heads up ...
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"Ain't Nobody Got Me Here But Me" by The Rising

Review

One of the key aims of both the features on artists in this magazine & by spotlighting many of them in the "Hot Music Live Presents" series of albums ...
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"The Fear of Missing Out" by Drop Down Smiling

Review

It may be something of a record for "Hot Music Live" (do let us know if you think you can beat it) in terms of gaps between featuring their music, ...
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"Absolutment" by Luke Concannon

Review

In advance of the full release of his new album 'Ecstatic Bird in the Burning' in February, Luke Concannon is this week sharing a third ...
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"Slow" by Jonny Olley

Review

I am very grateful to Toni Peach who frequently plugs the magazine on her HillzFM show, plays "Hot Music Live Presents" tracks and when circumstances ...
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Press Release from David Goody

News

"A Rather Silly History Of Coventry" Press ReleaseLocal singer-songwriter David Goody can't resist writing songs about Coventry.
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"Midnight" by Shannon Stevenson

Review

Coventry singer-songwriter Shannon Stevenson has decided to take the positive road of uplifting us with her end of the year release "Midnight" and I ...
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"Make You Stay" by Kenzie Webley

Review

When I interviewed Kenzie Webley the other week for the feature in the magazine, she was busy at 14 Records laying down some brand new tracks for us.
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"Ghosts of Christmas" by Alchemista

Review

Relatively hot on the heels of October's ‘Clear Skies To See' EP (certainly rapid by the standards of what is possible in 2020) ...
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Introducing Monday Nights

Feature

I wonder if you recollect Paul Englefield's review of The Empire at the Zephyr Lounge back in February 2016? Well two of that band are now in ...
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Jools Street and the Tile Hill Billies

Review

If, like me, one of the things to look forward to & keep me relatively sane during the depths of lockdown was Jools Street's weekly bluegrass ...
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"The Spoons" by Wilde

Review

If you enjoyed "Wasted" on ‘Hot Music Live Presents Volume Four' (I'm sure you did), then you'll be as pleased as I was to hear ...
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"Happy Christmas, All Will Be Fine" by King of the Alps

Review

It was only yesterday when Facebook reminded me that it was exactly twelve months since I had last see King of the Alps play live.
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"Free Lovin' Woman" by Shanghai Hostage

Review

I'll hold my hands up & admit that back in March my expectations for having much to write about in this magazine were low and so they have been ...
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Spotlight on Kenzie Webley

Feature

In my interview with Roddy "Radiation" Byers of The Specials etc earlier in the week, I observed how the pandemic has cut a swathe through the music ...
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"You Are (Live Studio Session)" by Luna Kiss

Review

To make up for not being able to gig, Luna Kiss have released a new single "You Are (Live Studio Session)" which is intended as a gift to their ...
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"I Wish It Was Summer (At Christmas Time)" by Jack Blackman and the Beautiful Wreck

Review

Christmas should involve thinking about others (and goodness knows everyone around us has need of our love & support currently) so I am particularly ...
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"This Special Time Of Year" by The Rising

Review

We are definitely finding ourselves in the festive release period now & if the cover art for the new single from The Rising "This Special Time Of ...
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"Intermission" by The Upsiders

Review

So here we are, as we always knew we would be, at the final instalment of the "Reconnect" project by The Upsiders, the single "Intermission" which ...
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‘Stories About You' by Danny Ansell

Review

One of my personal sadnesses (among several) for our local music scene was  that Danny Ansell's long awaited ‘As It Goes'  album came ...
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"We Still Have Next Year" by Ollie Bond

Review

A mere three weeks after I reviewed "Ready" by Ollie Bond, here the man himself is back again with his more seasonal release, "We Still Have Next ...
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"Silent Night (2020 Version)" by Stylusboy

Review

I am pleased to be able to announce to you that Stylusboy has just released a seasonal single for us, being a cover of "Silent Night" and that all ...
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‘Along The Tracks' by Steven John Birks

Review

May I take the opportunity today to introduce you to the work of Steven John Birks? Unfortunately I'm jumping aboard the musical train of this ...
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Catching up with Roddy Byers

Feature

Most readers of "Hot Music Live" plus countless others around the world, will know Roddy "Radiation" Byers best as the lead guitarist with the ...
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The Advent of Goody

News

Local singer-songwriter David Goody is no stranger to a Christmas song having provided bizarre festive cheer each year since the 2016 release of Spon ...
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"Changing with the Seasons" by Chloë Boehm

Review

Although  Chloë Boehm has only appeared in "Hot Music Live" for under a year, she is already one of the local artists on a particularly steep ...
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Introducing Ivy Ash

Feature

It's been a few months since I reviewed "Open Your Eyes" by Bethany Dyson in the magazine  the follow-up to "Just You & Me" which also features ...
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"Straight Up Genius" by Jack Blackman

Review

Jack Blackman is not only on a rich run of form at the moment (the pandemic seems to be inspiring him to express his feelings through the medium of ...
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"Heading Home" by The Upsiders

Review

I feel a little sad now we suddenly find ourselves at the penultimate instalment of The Upsiders' "Reconnect" project: today's new single ...
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"Scared" by Chasing Deer

Review

Unsurprisingly, I've not had the chance to review a new Chasing Deer release since their "Bad Decisions" way back in February.
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"Where The Stars Fall" by Man Made Moon

Review

I'm really pleased today to be able to review the brand new single from Man Made Moon called  "Where The Stars Fall": my first since ...
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'Christmas Time' EP by Rob Halligan

Review

Rob Halligan is another of our local musicians who could certainly be described as "prolific" in terms of just how much excellent music they are ...
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"Look" by Free Galaxy

Review

It's been a little while (I think we might guess why) since I last reviewed Free Galaxy  (whose "Leave Me" appears  on ‘Hot Music Live ...
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"Don't You Close Your Eyes" by Kirsty Clarke

Review

Today I can report to you on the new single by Kirsty Clarke, called "Don't You Close Your Eyes" (hopefully you'll have read my review of ...
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'Therapy' by Dave Pepper

Review

As usual, starting a Dave Pepper review with a list of his musical projects & genres mastered would in itself make an article too long to hold your ...
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"Ready" by Ollie Bond

Review

I suppose that by now I should be used to how Ollie Bond is managing to create, record & release so many high quality tracks despite the current ...
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"Cold Strange World" by Brudez

Review

I must say that much as I like the music of Brudez and respect what he does & says in his work, his new single  "Cold Strange World"  (out today on ...
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‘Bring a Little Love' by Stone Bear

Review

A moment of pleasure, the more appreciated because it was unexpected, hit me last evening with the news that Stone Bear have released a new album, ...
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"Bobbie Boat" by The Upsiders

Review

Today, we reach episode seven (of nine) in the "Reconnect" project of The Upsiders: "Bobbie Boat".
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"Your Heart is in My Chest" by Luke Concannon

Review

If next February seems still an awfully long way off to wait for the release of 'Ecstatic Bird in the Burning', the next album from Luke ...
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"I'm Not Coming Back (Stripped Back)"

News

If you enjoyed the most recent single by Ollie Bond, "I'm Not Coming Back" which was reviewed in the magazine last month, then you'll be ...
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"Doomsayer" by Ace Ambrose

Review

It is always exciting to review a new Ace Ambrose release & today really is no exception to that pattern.
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"Arthur McBride" by Filkin's Drift

News

For those of you who have been deprived of hearing the music of Ellie Gowers (I was fortunate enough to catch a live set on February 29th, but that ...
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"Ballad of Clopton House" by Jack Blackman

Review

At the end of a month which began with the release of his excellent single "Hard Place to be Be", Jack Blackman is showing no sense whatsoever of ...
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"Doing Nothing" by Luke Concannon

Review

Today, I'd like to draw your attention to a new single to be released on October 2nd from across the Atlantic: quite an unusual review for an ...
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'Always Heading Home' by Rob Halligan

Review

During the last eight months, I have reviewed releases I had some inkling of in advance, a few well in advance, some complete surprises & some long ...
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'Rollin'' by Voodoo Kings

Review

If I was forced to list the artists based locally whom I most enjoyed live, I should without question include the Voodoo Kings.
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"Tumbleweed And Dust" by Cary L

Review

It's proving a year when most of our expectations have been torn up & scattered on the winds.
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"2 AM Call" by The Rising

Review

There is something of a tightrope for artists to navigate: on one side the peril of producing so diverse a range of music that people can't join ...
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"Something Real" by The Upsiders

Review

The last chapter of The Upsiders' "Reconnect" song cycle, "Ooh Na" (reviewed in the magazine last month), found protagonist Kenny, while at ...
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"Tranquilo" by Dave Pepper

Review

Given the overwhelming feeling of claustrophobia engendered by the current situation, it is a corrective to share evidence that we are not all hemmed ...
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"I'm Not Coming Back" by Ollie Bond

Review

How Ollie Bond does it I simply cannot begin to fathom.
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'Clear Skies To See' EP by Alchemista

Review

I really hope that like me, you enjoyed the popular track "A Place To Hide" on ‘Hot Music Live Presents Volume Four'? If you haven't ...
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"Hard Place To Be" by Jack Blackman

Review

Barely a fortnight after his last release, the chilling  "Empty Beretta", Jack Blackman (who is also represented on ‘Hot Music Live Presents ...
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"The Fear" by The Session

Review

This is in many ways an unusual review but definitely one I have very much looked forwards to writing for some time.
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"Ooh Na", by The Upsiders

Review

Now we are in the heartland of The Upsiders' "Reconnect" project, not only are the cumulative emotions of the arc of protagonist Kenny's ...
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"Sides of Me" by Antonia Kirby

Review

After the misfortune of having the dreaded lurgy delay the anticipated & planned release of her new EP "Sides of Me", Antonia Kirby (whose "Labour ...
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"First Wave" by The Silver Wye

Review

Normally the autumnal equinox is precisely the time we'd look for a new release from The Silver Wye.
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Wes Finch Trio at Kenilworth Arts Festival

Review

Somewhat to my surprise, yesterday afternoon I found myself enjoying live music in the actual physical presence of the musicians creating it for the ...
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"Writers" by Chloë Boehm

Review

As I'm sure that you are aware, we were fortunate enough to be able to include the debut single of Chloë Boehm "Dare You" on ‘Hot Music Live ...
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"Sea of Stars" by Lemon Boy

Review

I hope you have been enjoying the track "Flamingo" on ‘Hot Music Live Presents Volume Four'? I'm pleased to share with you now the latest ...
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"Leap Year Gig Rehearsal" by Wes Finch

Review

There is some good news for Wes Finch fans awaiting the release of his Leap Year gig live album (as (p)reviewed in this magazine last month) He has ...
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"Homeward Hie" & "Sunshine" by Rob Halligan

Review

Rob Halligan fans will have felt blessed over the past week with two separate releases which I hope you won't mind my telling you about in a ...
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"Better Than This" by The Rising

Review

If you recall, like many of us, The Rising entered 2020 with high hopes & plans.
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How Was That - A new release from David Page

Review

"How was that?", says Dave between tracks.
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"Empty Beretta" by Jack Blackman

Review

We were greatly pleased to be able to feature the zeitgeist tapping "Self Isolation Song" by Jack Blackman on ‘Hot Music Live Presents Volume ...
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"Emilia" by Ollie Bond

Review

If, like me, you enjoyed "Safe With Me" by Ollie Bond  on ‘Hot Music Live Presents Volume Three', you'll be as pleased that despite the ...
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"What You Taught Me (Baby)" by Year Without A Summer

Review

Lots of things make writing reviews of great local music for "Hot Music Live" pleasurable.
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"21st Century Man" by The Upsiders

Review

I do hope that you have been following successive instalments of The Upsiders "Reconnect" project as they release them & we review them in the ...
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Paul Brook

Feature

For those of you who have already downloaded  "Hot Music Live Presents Volume Four" (if not, please check it out at https://hotmusiclivepresents.
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"Sush On The Roof" by The Upsiders

Review

I must have been a bit naive when back in late March I assumed that my articles in the magazine would become more infrequent: obviously there has ...
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Wes Finch's Leap Year Gig: Live Album

Review

Some six months ago, I wrote what to date is my penultimate live review for the magazine: concerning Wes Finch's Leap Year gig.
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"Hot Music Live Presents Volume 4" is out now!

News

"Hot Music Live Presents Volume 4" is out now!You can find it on our "Sounds" page and in BandCamp under 'Hot Music Live Presents Volume ...
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"Sway" by the Upsiders

Review

It was barely a fortnight ago that I was telling you all about The Upsiders' single "Worth A Million" which I'm delighted to see has been ...
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"Live in the Basement" by Stylusboy

Review

It was only last week that I was telling you about the new Stylusboy single "This Is Where I Belong" which was released in advance of its parent EP ...
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"This Is Where I Belong" by Stylusboy

Review

You'll no doubt have enjoyed that masterpiece of Stylusboy, namely   "For the Souls of My Brothers" on ‘Hot Music Live Presents Volume ...
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"Let's Go Home" by Joe Dolman & Millie Tilby

Review

This is rather an unusual release to be reporting on.
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Woodbine Street Recording Studio

Feature

In my latest feature on how local music related businesses are coping with, adapting to & evolving through the current circumstances, I am looking at ...
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LEAMINGTON PEACE FESTIVAL YEARS 2008-10

Photo gallery

I really only started going along to the Peace Festival in 2008 after the purchase of my first DSLR camera, have always loved my music both live and ...
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"Front Room Sessions: The Visual Album"

Review

I've said it before, but I'll say it again, I especially enjoy (and enjoy writing about) music where it touches base with other art media.
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'Blank Canvas' by Henery

Review

I really haven't concealed my admiration for the solo work of Henery in this magazine have I? Starting with live reviews which not only revealed ...
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"Won't Let Me In" by Satsangi

Review

Satsangi, never a band to shirk a challenge nor to be meekly led by fate nor wander aimlessly down roads many others have trodden previously, seem to ...
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"Worth A Million" by The Upsiders

Review

As I write, the very first  shoots of live music performance recovery seem underway: a few people including members of Evergreen & Chessi ...
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"Promised Land" by Rob Halligan

Review

A strange one this, the latest single release from Rob Halligan: "Promised Land" which comes a month after his previous one, "The Other Side" was ...
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"I Want You" by The Rising

Review

I am pleased to report that despite all the obstacles being placed in their way since their decision to launch a single a month in 2020, The Rising ...
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"Rose" by Ross Darby

Review

When I reported mere days ago that one of the artists who had recently been recording at 14 Records with Matt Waddell was Ross Darby, I certainly ...
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'The Life I Had 'Til Now' EP by Little Girl Screaming

Review

One of my favourite local bands (and I am far from their only admirer) has long been Little Girl Screaming, a band I came to via their incendiary ...
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"Darling" by Batsch

Review

It was April when I wrote about the "Colour of Love" single by Batsch in the magazine.
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"Wayward" by Katherine Abbott

Review

After the pleasure at being able to review "Lullaby For Lucas" by Katherine Abbott last month, I'm delighted that so little time has elapsed ...
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14 Records

Feature

In my most recent article, I focussed on how local business Dr.
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Dr.Um

Feature

Back in March, I shared some of my reflections, fears & thoughts about the impact of lockdown on the local music scene & more or less left it on a ...
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David Ellis

Feature

Dave has a very distinctive sound of his own.
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"Hour Glass" by Ian Todd

Review

Keen readers of this magazine will recollect the February feature  of Ian Todd & even keener ones will have spotted his name amongst the details of ...
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"To the Sun" by Henery

Review

One of the many disappointing aspects  of lockdown (and I write this on a day when I would otherwise have been anticipating Leamington Peace ...
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Venues in Lockdown and before: THE BUCK AND BELL AT LONG ITCHINGTON

Feature

BEFORE LOCKDOWN:Owners of this pub are Mr Peter Evans and Mrs Cheryl EvansPete is from the Southam area attended Wolston High School.
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"Fire" solo video by Izzie Derry

Review

I do like being taken be surprised by music (to be honest I'm not sure I enjoy reviewing music which fails in some way to do so) and I hope I am ...
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"Lullaby For Lucas" by Katherine Abbott

Review

Another first for me: my debut review of Stratford singer songwriter Katherine Abbott & my apologies as I'm arriving quite late at this ...
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"The Cold Light" by The Silver Wye

Review

Last night was another Full Moon (and a strawberry one at that, with an added penumbral lunar eclipse) and that these days means a new single from ...
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"Live at the Melting Pot" by TwoManTing

Review

When I reviewed the current TwoManTing single "Gbangbaode" for you last week & at the end advised you of their upcoming live album, I really ...
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"The Other Side" by Rob Halligan

Review

"The Other Side", the new single by Rob Halligan, will be released on all major download and streaming services on June 22nd but don't worry, ...
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"Resuscitate Me!" by Katie Walters & Ace Ambrose

Review

This review  concerns something that manages simultaneously to be compassionate, passionate, challenging, exciting and accessible & above all a ...
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"Live in London" by Nizlopi

Review

This is an interesting one: with quite a nuanced tale to be told.
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"Icarus" by Antonia Kirby

Review

Today I'd like to share with you the latest single (out today) by Antonia Kirby whose"Labour of Love" appears on ‘Hot Music Live Presents ...
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Make you mine

Review

Make you mine, the first solo release from Dean Dovey, is a big, big romantic ballad.
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LEAMINGTON ASSEMBLY MEMORIES - PART 2

Feature

The lockdown has given me the opportunity to have a second look back over my favourite gigs/memories from the Assembly, along with a selection of my ...
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"Open Your Eyes" by Bethany Dyson

Review

Did you enjoy the sumptuous, popular & acclaimed track "Just You & Me" on ‘Hot Music Live Presents Volume Three'?  If, like me, you did, ...
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"Be Gentle" by Chloë Boehm

Review

Chloë Boehm has very rapidly gained a highly positive reputation on the local music scene: it is mere months still since she first acquired a ...
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"Gbangbaode" by TwoManTing

Review

I last reviewed TwoManTing for this magazine in a live context back last November & I trust you'll recollect my sense of enjoyment of that ...
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"Streets of London" by Wes Finch

Review

Lord knows this lockdown life can seem like "Groundhog Day" when you are inside it.
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"Dig a Little Deeper" by Mister Keith

Review

I feared that my reviews for "Hot Music Live" might dwindle during the current situation, with no live performances on which to report & the ...
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"Isolation" by Street Arts Project & Friends

Review

You might very well like to check out today's release of a charity single appropriately called "Isolation" by ‘Street Arts Project & ...
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Christopher Sidwell of Crokodile Tears and The Trees

Interview

HOI POLLOIChristopher Sidwell of Crokodile Tears and The Trees Lyricist, musician and Artist What a very talented performer Christopher Sidwell is.
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'Smooth Groove' EP by Kev Stanley

Review

As I said the other week, being surprised as a reviewer is part of the pleasure of doing it.
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"Flamingo" by Lemon Boy

Review

A few weeks ago, on the recommendation of Callum Ward of ‘Hot music Live Presents' artists Free Galaxy, I reviewed the Kenilworth based ...
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"Shadows on the Wall" by The Rising

Review

Reviewing obviously excellent artists is always a pleasure, but there is an extra frisson in writing about a release or performance which takes even ...
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‘Shivoham-Lockdown Lullabies' by Satsangi

Review

Well life under lockdown continues to evolve doesn't it: even, or perhaps especially, our musical life.
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"Mr Motivator" by Shanghai Hostage

Review

Just as the initial curtailment of live gig opportunities saw many of the artists we report on in "Hot Music Live" upskill themselves to be able to ...
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'Hindsight' by Year Without a Summer

Review

Thankfully despite the complete lull in gigs to review, the flow of releases continues (though I suspect we are going to reach a point when material ...
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"Denver Hill" by The Session

Review

It was a pleasant surprise to learn that one of our area's most dynamic & exciting bands The Session have managed to unleash a new single called ...
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"Miura" by Souki

Review

All credit first of all to "Hot Music Live Presents" artist (and one of the key people whose idea that project was) Fall Girl (Michelle Sciarrotta) ...
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"Colour of Love" by Batsch

Review

It was virtually a year ago that I wrote very favourably about a live performance by Batsch (who are Mason Le Long, Joe Carvell, Matt Rheeston & Andy ...
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"Just My Luck" by The Silver Wye

Review

As with their last single, the brooding & allegorical "The Getting Place", The Silver Wye are releasing their latest track "Just My Luck" to mark a ...
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"Square Times" by Lemon Boy

Review

One great thing about "Hot Music Live" is the sense of community & so I'm indebted to Callum Ward of "Hot Music Live Presents" artists Free ...
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Hot Music Live Presents Volume 3

News

'HOT MUSIC LIVE PRESENTS' VOLUME THREE - OUT NOW!.
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"As It Goes" by Danny Ansell & Co

Review

Pleased as I undoubtedly am to be reviewing "As It Goes", the brand new album from Danny Ansell & Co, there is no getting away from the facts that ...
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"Little Brave" by Henery

Review

In February (and how long ago that feels today), I had the pleasure of telling you about "In The Moment", the debut single by singer-songwriter ...
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"Just Another Name" by The Rising

Review

The latest single from Belfast founded & now Leamington based "fresh-faced Pop/Rock with Modern Country Stylings" duo The Rising is "Just Another ...
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"Jump" by Abz Winter

Review

It's good to be able to report to you that Abz Winter is following up her very well received (not least in the review in this magazine) single ...
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"The Lover That You Are" by Ste Essence featuring Rheo

Review

If you look at the "front page" of the magazine, you may have noticed that the most recent article always comes under the banner of "Fresh & Funky".
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"Dare You" by Chloë Boehm

Review

An artist who has been steadily making an impact locally in recent months, Chloë Boehm, today has released her first track "Dare You".
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Barnabus Album Launch Gig

News

***RESCHEDULED TO FRI 16TH OCTOBER***With Leamington rock band Barnabus, formed way back in 1970 having an Album Launch gig in Warwick next month it ...
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‘The Best of Albums 1-8‘ by Daffod'i'll

Review

For the past three years, former Gods Toys & I vocalist Dill has been making up for the time lost out of music for personal & health reasons by ...
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Naomi Beth

Feature

After the success of my recent features on Ian Todd & Chloë Boehm, here is another one I think you'll find interesting & I think topical.
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"Songs From The Vaults" Fundraising album for The Tin

Review

Last week I wrote a piece for "Hot Music Live" looking at some of the (negative) implications for the music scene during the current crisis.
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"The Greatest Gift" by Deep Sea Divers

Review

So, another day in lock down, another day I can't be writing about the great gig I went to last night.
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Chloë Boehm

Feature

Although I really enjoy writing reviews for "Hot Music Live", I also like telling you about the artists & hopefully during this strange period, time ...
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"Snowflake" by Chessi O'Dowd

Review

Two apologies to you all.
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"Self Care" by Hannah Woof

Review

A mere few hours ago, on the stroke of midnight in fact, Hannah Woof released her new single, the zeitgeisty "Self Care", her first since her equally ...
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"Come Take Your Place" by Rob Halligan

Review

Today I'm pleased to be able to draw your attention to a new release by Rob Halligan, namely "Come Take Your Place", his first since "Nothing ...
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‘From the Forge' by Greengrass

Review

Well this is something of a milestone: my first review of the new order.
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Keeping the beat - Drum fanatic

Interview

Steve is a very accomplished drummer having been in a lot of of bands playing different genres of music .
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What Are We Gonna Do Now?

Feature

On Sunday morning, I began writing what will obviously now be my last live review for quite some time.
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Launch gig for the 'Take It From Me' EP by Izzie Derry

Review

If you are anything like me, among the myriad challenges to our communities currently being presented, the probable curtailment of live music for ...
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Fallow Man EP

Review

Once again, I am in the happy position to write about a band who have hitherto yet to appear in "Hot Music Live".
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Wes Finch's Leap Year gig

Review

February 29th is an unusual date.
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The Man behind the mask. Paul Sanders DJ, Presenter, tour guide actor and wordsmith 

Interview

Just before I put the answers I submitted to Paul for this article I would like to express thanks on behalf of everyone for all the hard work he does ...
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Nouvelle Vague - 15 years Anniversary Tour

News

AGMP presents NOUVELLE VAGUE, 15 years Anniversary Tour.
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"Bow Down To Love" by But Is It Jazz?

Review

There are many aspects of our ‘Hot Music Live Presents' project of which I am very proud.
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"She Said" by The Caprines

Review

If you as big a fan of The Caprines (Ed Kimberley on drums, Dave Toulson on lead guitar, John Lindley on vocals and on rhythm guitar and Curtis ...
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"Bad Decisions" by Chasing Deer

Review

It's really good to return to "Hot Music Live" regulars Chasing Deer after a while.
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Funk: A Music Revolution

Feature

When it comes to defining the first record in any given genre, there's usually heated debate.
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'Oedipus Rex' by Kirk Hastings

Review

One of my occasional delights in writing for "Hot Music Live", as regular readers may have spotted, is when art media converge: that applies for the ...
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"Brain Cell" by Autopilot

Review

Having reviewed them live previously, I am pleased to now tell you of the brand new single from Autopilot: "Brain Cell".
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"Push and Pull" by John Connearn

Review

It seems so recently that I was telling you all about the debut single by John Connearn, the appropriately entitled "First Things First" and although ...
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"Nothing Good Is Wasted" by Rob Halligan

Review

Today I am pleased to be able to tell you about a new release from Rob Halligan: "Nothing Good Is Wasted" which is a taster for us from his upcoming ...
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Ian Todd

Feature

We cover so many multi-talented artists in "Hot Music Live": not just musicians but the photographers, visual artists & producers whom they work with.
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"The King" by Shanghai Hostage

Review

Today I'm really pleased to be reviewing the new, the brand new, single by Shanghai Hostage within minutes of its video being publicly released ...
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"Getting Place" by The Silver Wye

Review

The Silver Wye, like any great river, rolls majestically on, picking up speed in the release of its songs.
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'Take It From Me' by Izzie Derry

Review

One conundrum I face with reviewing the calibre of artist I tend to focus on (it's an enjoyable challenge really) is how to handle it when ...
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"The Middle" (Acoustic Version) by Joe Dolman

Review

I have recently accused Joe Dolman of being prolific in his output and here he is again with a brand new release a month since I last reviewed him.
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"In The Moment" by Henery

Review

I first reviewed Henery & his music for "Hot Music Live" eleven months ago when I saw him  supporting Ellie Gowers: "Henery was a revelation.
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Roddy Woomble - Announces Coventry gig

News

RODDY WOOMBLE ANNOUNCES NEW EP + SHARES VIDEO FOR LEAD SINGLE "EVERYDAY SUN" - WATCH HERE + EXTENSIVE UK LIVE DATES FOR 2020"Everyday Sun" is a ...
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Clemency live at the Town House

Review

I expect we all agree that music can actually do things to us & for us: improve our mood & morale, lift our spirits, transform our psyches.
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"On the Come Down" by River of the Dog

Review

I must admit to being a little low when I woke up this morning.
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BERHN

Feature

As promised, after my review of Kirsty Clarke's new track, "Greatest of Partners", I thought you'd like a piece on her other venture, ...
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"Greatest of Partners" by Kirsty Clarke

Review

Welcome to another of my series of reviews of Coventry & Warwickshire musicians whom I hold in very high regard yet have hitherto failed to review in ...
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Interview with David Page singer/songwriter with DABB4

Interview

Question : When did you begin writing ?Answer : At 16y ears I began writing lyrics to songs then music .
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Titine La Voix Live

Review

It has been far too long since I had last caught a full Titine La Voix live set.
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Leamington Assembly Memories

Feature

With the return of the Leamington Assembly it seems a good time to take a look back over my years covering gigs at this excellent venue and look at ...
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"Train" by Stone Bear

Review

I do hope you enjoyed the Stone Bear song "Bring A Little Love" which appeared on ‘Hot Music Live Presents Volume One'? Now Jeff Dennis ...
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Thomas Truax Announces 'New Music Machines' UK Tour

Feature

A SonicPR promotion .
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"Sky Blue Pink" by Daffod'i'll

Review

When recently I reviewed no fewer than three Daffod'i'll albums in one fell swoop in a catch up exercise, if you looked at the photos ...
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'All Pretty Real' by The Old Number 7 Band

Review

When I saw the Old Number 7 Band at the Railway Inn in Leamington on Saturday, while they were not playing, the venue piped music was some of the ...
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The Old Number 7 Band at the Railway Inn

Review

What a great way to start off 2020.
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"Satellites" by Danny Ansell & Co

Review

‘Satellites'   is the most recent single by Danny Ansell & Co (Danny Ansell on vocals and guitars, Roger Greasby on drums and Patrick Beard ...
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Preview of "Don't Go Playing With A Young Girl's Heart" by Abz Winter

Review

Back when The Clash began, their manager, Bernie Rhodes, instructed them to "write about what you know", advice which took them along the route we ...
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"When I Went Away" by Ollie Bond

Review

I find myself mentioning ‘artists on a roll' increasingly frequently these days: not every artist works to the same pace & lord knows many ...
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"Learn To Grow" by Izzie Derry

Review

It's odd: the more reviews you write, the more patterns emerge.
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"In A Year" by Izzie Derry

Review

December 12th is a date many people have possibly been looking forwards to or dreading for various reasons.
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APE Night Returns!

News

Some excellent news for lovers of music which dares to be a bit different.
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"Hot Music Live Presents" Volume Two - Review

Review

Album review by Mae Simkin from Music, Drums and MeRead original article hereAlmost a year after the release of Volume One, Coventry & Warwickshire ...
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A trio by Dill

Review

Something which as a reviewer I am keenly aware of is that so many artists are releasing their material in the form of EPs currently.
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"The Middle" by Joe Dolman

Review

I think that we can all by now agree that Joe Dolman is one of the most talented & popular artists from Coventry & Warwickshire & to that add "one of ...
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"Fool (Funk)" by Antonia Kirby

Review

Déjà vu: again.
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Preview of Rheo's upcoming EP

Review

We live in exciting times! I have never known such a great time for local creativity and for some reason there has been a large number of gigs & ...
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Brass Hip Flask live

Review

It is always a challenge finding the right words for any review: trying to describe one medium in another is itself tricky & then if you review ...
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"First Things First" by John Connearn

Review

John Connearn will be a name already well known to the aficionados of the local music scene & as the new decade dawns, will become better known to ...
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"Christmas Brought You Here" by The Rising

Review

A couple of thoughts occurred to me as I started this review.
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"You Are Light" by The Silver Wye (Slight Return)

Review

I'm sorry but I'm afraid I'm going to have to instil a touch of déjà vu in you.
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"Layla's Wood" by Speak, Brother

Review

I trust that you have, by now heard the last Speak, Brother single "Even Though We Are Strangers"   (reviewed in the magazine on 30th September).
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"It's Christmas" by Dave Pepper

Review

In terms of the tracks on ‘Hot Music Live Presents Volume One', some were great tracks from today & others rare & unreleased gems from some of ...
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"Everlasting" by Free Galaxy

Review

I do hope that you have checked out "Leave Me" on "Hot Music Live Presents Volume Two" by very fast rising Kenilworth band Free Galaxy? If not, you ...
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"Fool" by Antonia Kirby

Review

Today I have the opportunity to repair another omission in my reviewing history for "Hot Music Live":  to be precise until this moment, I have not ...
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"Just You & Me" by Bethany Dyson

Review

My apologies to Bethany Dyson whose latest single "Just You & Me" has been out several weeks: I suppose one defence for my delay in reviewing it has ...
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Joe Dolman's Christmas Special at All Saints Church

Review

Joe Dolman & band - Christmas Concert - All Saints Church, Leamington Spa, 6/12/2019Support act: Will NaisbittFriday, 6th Decemmber, a damp, cold ...
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Tigermask live at The Town House

Review

I have to admit from the start that I found writing a review which captures the essence of Tigermask adequately, having seen him play at the Town ...
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"It's That Time Of Year" by Abz Winter

Review

As 2019 winds down, it occurred to me that one of the names which has been cropping up very regularly during the year, namely Abz Winter, would never ...
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The Mechanicals Band & Ellie Gowers

Review

One of the final formal gigs I shall attend in 2019 was also one of the best: the highest possible levels of musicianship but even more importantly ...
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"Safe With Me" by Ollie Bond

Review

Hopefully, I do try to capture the best of Coventry & Warwickshire music (or at least such as I encounter) in my reviews but from time to time ...
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"Winter Came Around Too Fast" by Sophie Hadlum

Review

I hope that by now, many of you will have downloaded, played & enjoyed "Hot Music Live Presents Volume Two" (https://hotmusiclivepresents.
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"Head Under Water" by Brass Hip Flask x White Rat Cult

Review

There have been more "blues revivals" than there are blues standards (possibly.
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Excited launch for Taylor-Louise's Black Heart EP

Review

Leamington Spa based singer/songwriter Taylor-Louise launched her 4th EP Black Heart to an excited audience at St.
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Taylor-Louise launches 'Black Heart'

Review

What a fiesta of an evening on Friday at St Patrick's Club in Leamington.
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"Fly" by Clemency

Review

If several of my more recent reviews have been of songs previously unheard by me & some even caught me by surprise with their release, the new single ...
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TwoManTing

Review

Watching TwoManTing last night at the Town House in Leamington, one of my immediate thoughts was "it's been too long" since I last saw them live.
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The Will Ball Trio at the Town House

Review

This review in some ways is able to address an omission among my pieces for "Hot Music Live": although I have alluded to Will Ball in respect of his ...
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The Mechanicals Band present The Righteous Jazz

Review

Occasionally I've been able to review for "Hot Music Live" an event which involves but is not limited to music: a particular pleasure.
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Dirty Sound Magnet + Satsangi + Tamarack, The Tin Coventry, 29/11/19

News

On Friday 29/11/19 Dirty Sound Magnet will hit The Tin Music and Arts with support from two fantastic local acts, Satsangi and Tamarack - Presented ...
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'The Sun Will Rise Again' by King of the Alps

Review

Every so often, I enthuse in a review for "Hot Music Live" over the privileges of being able to do so: fairly obviously hearing wonderful & original ...
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"Better By Now" by Joe Dolman

Review

Happy New Music Friday to you all!To celebrate the day, Joe Dolman has a brand new single "Better By Now" out for your delectation.
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From The Source

News

From The Source is the title of a new series of concerts at Warwick Arts Centre which focus on artists whose roots are in jazz music, yet whose ...
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"Let This One Be Mine" by Izzie Derry

Review

I find myself here writing a review which I had never anticipated.
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"Sweet Talk" by Hannah Woof

Review

I wrote last week of the issues & tensions which must exist around even the best artists as they develop their individual voice & sound yet need to ...
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Calexico and Iron & Wine announce UK tour dates for November

News

A SonicPR promotion .
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"Against The Tide" by Ellie Gowers

Review

Some of the records I review for "Hot Music Live" come to me out of the relative blue.
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The Hatstand Band

Review

Although I have seen them play before, and greatly enjoyed their performances, I have not actually ever given them a full review for some reason (I ...
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"Try" and "Leaving" by Jake Rizzo

Review

It is said of several aspects of life that "a week is a long time" within them: to the list we might now add the career of Jake Rizzo.
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JAWS – Empire Coventry - 30th Nov 2019

News

A SonicPR promotion .
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"If You Loved Me" by Jake Rizzo

Review

It is always a great pleasure to review excellent music, but to focus on a debut single is that extra bit special as you feel like a traveller ...
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"If You Were Mine" by Joe Dolman

Review

One element which seems to play a part in making the difference between local artists with bags of talent & original ideas whose careers seem to ...
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"Late Again" by Earlybird

Review

This review is extremely fresh being of a debut single by a band whom I've not yet seen live yet and ironically I have seen more great photos of ...
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"You Are Light" by The Silver Wye

Review

Last November, in "Hot Music Live", I reviewed a song called "Pick Me Up" by an entity calling itself The Silver Wye.
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Spandau Ballet Star To Play The Assembly In 2020!

News

A SonicPR promotion .
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"Even Though We Are Strangers" by Speak, Brother

Review

It's ironic that in such short succession I should write song reviews for bands whom I hold in high esteem yet whom I have only previously ...
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Pitch Black (NZ)

Feature

Spacific, in alliance with Disco Gecko Recordings and Dubmission Records, are proud to present an evening of outernational electronica featuring live ...
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SWING ERA TO DANCE INTO LEAMINGTON SPA AS PART OF UK TOUR

News

Down for the Count Swing Orchestra bring vintage jazz sound to Loft Theatre this NovemberThe Down for the Count Swing Orchestra will bring the sounds ...
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Agoraphobia, The Smoking Kills, Just For Now, Women Gone Missing - 18/10/19, The Tin Coventry

News

An incredible night of rock music hosted by Catch 22 Promotions!Agoraphobia are the new trailblazers of Spanish Alt-Rock.
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"Need A Friend" by The Caprines

Review

One of my very favourite of local bands happens to be Coventry based four piece The Caprines (they comprise Ed Kimberley on drums, Dave Toulson on ...
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New Leamington Spa-based duo, Brook, release debut album, "Built You For Thought"

News

Brook press release .
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LEAMINGTON BEER + MUSIC FESTIVAL 2019

Photo gallery

A few of my images from the music stages at this years Leamington Beer + Music Festival, another success both in the music and a wonderful collection ...
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Line up for Leamington Beer and Music Festival 2019

News

13 and 14th September.
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Blues Extra caught in the act

Media

Remember Summer? Here's Blues Extra with an evocatve take on Don't believe a word at Napton festival.
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Alan's memorial igg

News

Another amazing fundraiser production from Peter Drew with sets from The Hepsters, Carrick, The Intruders, Woodstock 68 and The Jolly Rogers.
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Clemency at the Warwick Beer Festival

Photo gallery

Richly textured grooves, emotive vocals and powerful original material.
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"Sunny Lady" by Evergreen

Review

I think that I can safely say that I have not before reviewed a more eagerly anticipated debut single than "Sunny Lady" by Evergreen.
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New single from Jack Blackman and the Beautiful Wreck - No Silver Lining

Feature

'No Silver Lining' is the debut single from Jack Blackman and the Beautiful Wreck.
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Kenilworth Arts Festival 2019 Listings

News

M Seven Public Relations promotion .
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'Routes' by Stylusboy

Review

I've said it before, but reviewing for "Hot Music Live" is a real privilege in so many ways.
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The Countdown Is On For Kenilworth Arts Festival 2019

News

M Seven Public Relations press release .
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HOLLY & THE HOUNDS AND STRIPCLUB STREETFOOD

Photo gallery

This was a fine Bank Holiday Sunday evening in the canal side setting of the Tom O' The Wood in Rowington, glorious weather the chilled out ...
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'Fourth in Line' EP by Fourth in Line

Review

It is entirely possible that although this is their first review in the magazine, you may already be aware of Fourth in Line.
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Wayne Hussey extensive ‘Salad Daze Tour'

News

A SonicPR promotion .
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CROPREDY 2019 GALLERY

Photo gallery

Loved my visit to Cropredy again this year, fab to see Wildwood Kin on the big stage going down a storm while other highlights on and my visit ...
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The Mechanicals Band with special guest Ellie Gowers

Review

Well here I am again, this time reviewing not one but two artists on whom I fear I may have already used up my supply of appropriate superlatives in ...
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Sam McNulty with Angelo Cardone & Bill Cameron

Review

Few "Hot Music Live" readers will need introducing to the name nor talents of Sam McNulty.
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Burning Salt

Review

One of the issues which is a perennial worry for me in writing for "Hot Music Live" is how to cover even the most excellent of artists, the ones we ...
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WARWICK FOLK FESTIVAL 2019 - A GALLERY

Photo gallery

Here is a selection of my images from this years Warwick Folk Festival, many of them taken at fringe events around the town, this year as with last ...
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Merrymaker with Rosie Samaras

Review

The gig at the Magic Lantern last night was described by venue creator & owner Adrian Gains as "one of the best nights we have had so far.
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The Ellipsis with special guest Hannah Woof

Review

It all seems such a long time ago, so many & so powerful have the subsequent performances at the Magic Lantern been, that it is an interesting ...
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A LOOK AHEAD TO CROPREDY 2019, 8th -10th August

Photo gallery

Looking forward to my visit to that friendliest of festivals Cropredy again next month to take in the great atmosphere, overall vibe and of course a ...
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Ubergine at Warwick Beer Festival Summer 2019

Photo gallery

Ubergine at the 2019 Summer Warwick Beer festival.
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John Storer, Lesley Minchella-Storer and Kirsty Minchella-Storer at Warwick Beer festival summer 201

Photo gallery

A lively, polished and engaging set of folk and pop with some notable guitar work on Fleetwood Mac's Oh Well.
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Shanade with guests Nicky Ager & Aaron Dudfield

Review

By now I'm sure you'll be aware of the many bees in my bonnet as I tend to repeat  much the same obsessions in most reviews, so when I ...
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"Endless Summer" by The Rising

Review

There are a handful of great locally based artists not so much emerging (how can they be just "emerging" when they have spent time honing their ...
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Ross Darby live at the Magic Lantern

Review

I am a big fan of the performing & writing of Ross Darby so it was a big pleasure to get another chance to review him for this magazine on the ...
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Irene Rae supported by Stylusboy

Review

Once again I can write up for you something rather special: two performances which were pretty unique for our area & which again I felt so privileged ...
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Izzie Derry with her special guests King of the Alps

Review

Last night was one for the connoisseurs: a whole evening of nothing but top class original music written from personal perspectives & played with ...
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Godiva 2019

Review

Twice cajoled by my pal Andy Holdcroft to present my experience of Godiva Festival 2019 in a Hot Music Live article, I thought I'd best just get ...
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Shanghai Hostage with their special guests Brass Hip Flask

Review

I should really like first of all to voice my appreciation to the members of both Shanghai Hostage & Brass Hip Flask.
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THE WARWICK FOLK FESTIVAL 2019 25th -28th July - Preview

Photo gallery

The Warwick Folk Festival celebrates its 40th anniversary this year with a stella line-up of Folk talent, with an opening night concert on the ...
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DODGING THE SHOWERS AT THE NAPTON FESTIVAL 2019 - SATURDAY

Photo gallery

The showers meant plenty of time at the indoor Lounge Stage for me, no hardship as the line-up was quality from start to finish, opening with star in ...
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Godiva Festival 2019: a personal reflection

Review

I could, I suppose, run through every act I saw & enjoyed at the 2019 Godiva Festival in detail which would give them the credit they thoroughly ...
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'Stories From A Sunny Side' by Caleb Murray

Review

I hope that you recall my review in "Hot Music Live" of Caleb Murray's  ‘No Congregation' EP? If you have listened to & downloaded "Hot ...
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Diz n Rox with Andy Beglin

Review

Wow what a night! On a sweltering June evening, maybe going underground was the best option, even though the Magic Lantern had to deploy extra fan ...
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Taylor-Louise & Abz Winter

Review

Another cracking evening which saw the grand musical talent of Warwickshire displayed on several levels.
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A LOOK AHEAD TO THE NAPTON FESTIVAL 2019 - 5th and 6th of July

Photo gallery

Only just over a week before Napton brings rock and roll (as well as just about every other musical genre!) to life in the grounds of the Napton ...
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Holly & the Hounds

Review

I have reviewed the consummate musicianship of Holly Hewitt & David Page for "Hot Music Live" on several occasions, though it isn't, I admit, ...
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"Gone" by Taylor-Louise

Review

If you are counting, you'll have spotted that the new single "Gone" is the third single to be released from Taylor-Louise's stunning "Black ...
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"Ticket To Nowhere" by Matty Coles

Review

At a dozen tracks, ‘Ticket To Nowhere', the new album by local singer-songwriter Matty Coles to which I've been listening, provides ...
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Free Galaxy at the Leamington Peace Festival

Photo gallery

This Fathers' Day lark is pretty good and I certainly didn't turn my nose up at a Dad-size bacon butty and a fresh bottle to add to the ...
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Man Made Moon supported by Noah Dobbie

Review

Here I go again: another evening spent in the company of really talented musicians who not only perform in a way that touches my soul but objectively ...
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"Grow" by The Ellipsis

Review

Last week, I had every intention of writing a review in this magazine of the gig I was intending to attend at the Zephyr Lounge by The Ellipsis, ...
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'More Songs About Hospital Food' by Simon Morgan

Review

Warwickshire singer song writer Simon Morgan has a long & distinguished pedigree for producing music from the "heart on the sleeve" school of ...
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Community cafe at the Hod Carrier

Review

I do love the headine gigs with the monster sound systems, massive lighting rigs and legendary names - but they're not the whole picture.
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"Moving On" by The Rising

Review

As promised in my review of their performance at Sunday's BBC Introducing Coventry & Warwickshire showcase, what follows is my review of the ...
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Jaws - new video + tour dates, include The Empire, Sat 30th Nov 2019

News

A SonicPR promotion .
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BBC Introducing Showcase

Review

"Hot Music Live" tries really hard to do many things.
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Ubergine at Temperance

Photo gallery

Haunting vocals over compelling rhythms and dancing basslines.
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TRINITY 4 - A PROG/CHARITY EXTRAVAGANSA

Photo gallery

A day of both wonderful music prog style and generosity raising money for Scope, Mind and Help Musicians UK.
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Evergreen at the Magic Lantern

Review

I flatter myself that some of you may remember my reviewing the Hansel Brothers in the past for "Hot Music Live" (most recently on February 10th).
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A Certain Ratio 40th Anniversary Celebration

News

A SonicPR promotion .
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Vince Hill's farewell concert in Coventry

News

With 2019 marking his 85th birthday, singing star Vince Hill will be heading home to Coventry next month to perform a special farewell concert at the ...
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Wes Finch supported by Stylusboy

Review

Another  emotionally rewarding night at the Magic Lantern, savouring two of the finest & most individual of the many great local performers & ...
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Jake Rizzo supported by Henery

Review

Another wonderful night of song writing craft & passionate performances at the Magic Lantern last evening & two more great local musicians who ...
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"Stories From The She Punks"

Review

As explained in the preview in "Hot Music Live" on February 1st, yesterday there was a special screening of the acclaimed documentary "Stories From ...
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Helen McCookerybook with the Sunbathers & Peter Hall

Review

What a beautiful evening's entertainment & soul sustenance of original music at the Tin.
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Fairport Convention supported by Izzie Derry

Review

As previewed in "Hot Music Live Presents", last evening Izzie Derry, who has several times been reviewed in the magazine & is part of the "Hot Music ...
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"We All Write The Songs" by Rob Halligan

Review

As promised in my review of Rob Halligan's recent gig at the Magic Lantern with Kristy Gallacher, here is my review of his most recent album, ...
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Burning Salt at the Magic Lantern

Review

What an interesting & subtle band Burning Salt are.
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Kristy Gallacher with Rob Halligan

Review

 In 1996 Elvis Costello held an event he called "A Case For Song" which was filmed for the BBC: collaborating with a range of other musicians but ...
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KRISTY GALLACHER AND ROB HALLIGAN AT TEMPERANCE

Photo gallery

What a wonderful night of live music this was, a fine set by Rob Halligan followed by a wonderful performance by one of my favourite ...
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"Generation Now" by Taylor-Louise

Review

When is "easy listening" not easy listening?Possibly when it is one of those quite rare songwriting approaches where the composer deliberately ...
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"Out Upon The Ocean" EP by Stylusboy

Review

Writing for a music magazine in Coventry & Warwickshire, which is let's face it pretty landlocked, I don't expect to review many maritime ...
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"The Mountain" by Brass Hip Flask

Review

Do you like your blues authentic & raw? I do.
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APE Night

Review

I have often written about the wonderful, in fact the weird, thought provoking & wonderful evenings Johnny Satsangi puts on at the Zephyr Lounge ...
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"Drag You Down" by Joe Dolman

Review

Isn't it a real boost when a local musician whom you've seen often playing the open mics & the local venues & whose work you've ...
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"Lost At Sea" EP by Izzie Derry

Review

A real headache for me is trying to express my admiration for work I consider is an artist's best so far without sounding like I didn't ...
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"Weightless" by Man Made Moon

Review

Isn't the artwork for the new Man Made Moon single "Weightless" great?  You'll be pleased to hear that the musical content rises to the ...
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Taylor-Louise news

News

I don't usually review artists' websites (in fact I don't think I ever have before?) but why not? They are a crucial method of keeping ...
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"Lonely Nights" by The Institutes

Review

I haven't yet reviewed Coventry band The Institutes for "Hot Music Live" so it's good to have the opportunity to repair that omission when ...
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Sunjay - Willoughby Village Hall, Sat 11th May 2019

News

A James H Soars Media Services promotion .
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TRINITY 4 - LEAMINGTON ASSEMBLY SATURDAY 11th May 2019

Photo gallery

The Prog world gets together again next month at The Leamington Assembly when on 11th May Trinity the prog rock music festival returns to its ...
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Hannah Woof with John Connearn supported by Ellie Gowers

Review

I'm going to go with "spell-binding" as my key word (two words?) for last evening's gig.
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Stone Bear supported by Ollie Lawrence

Review

It is always really great to have new talent introduced to you & it is a clear & highly  admirable feature of much of the music scene locally that ...
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KRISTY GALLACHER - TEMPERANCE BAR, Friday 3rd May

Photo gallery

Kristy Gallacher will be performing at Temperance, in Leamington on May 3rd with Rob Halligan & Lisa Nowak.
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Fairport Convention with Izzie Derry

News

It is a particular pleasure to report a gig which features not only artists who are as important in the history of popular music as Fairport ...
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"BLIND" by The Session

Review

Another great upcoming release which I have had the pleasure to have been able to listen to for the last few weeks has been the new, Leamington ...
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Naomi Beth at the Magic Lantern

Review

This gig was, for me & I know many others (the venue was packed), including the star, an eagerly anticipated one.
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Bill Laurance looks to the future

Interview

"It's a personal exploration.
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Chalk Drawings live with Ellis Gallagher

Review

In an interesting coincidence, it is a year & a week since I reviewed the album ‘Grand Union' by Chalk Drawings in ‘Hot Music Live'.
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‘Respect to Aretha' at the Belgrade Theatre

News

I am indebted to Heather Kincaid of the Belgrade Theatre for her heads-up on the news that local singer Letitia George (who previously appeared on ...
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Toby Marks & Andrew Heath present "Motion"

Review

Who likes being out of their comfort zone? As reading my reviews in "Hot Music Live" will show, I can mostly find some words (if any words can ever ...
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Kirk Brandon, SPEAR OF DESTINY et al tour, including Queens Hall

News

A Sonic PR promotion .
 [2 images] More


GOLDRAY April UK Shows, including Queens Hall

News

A Sonic PR promotion .
 [1 image] More


The Mechanicals Band

Review

Congratulations: you are about to get a double review.
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Ellie Gowers & Henery live at the Magic Lantern

Review

 Last evening was one of local music's most anticipated gigs of 2019 so far.
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Calton Kelly & Callum Mckissock

Review

The keynote description being used at the Calton Kelly gig last night at the Magic Lantern  was "lush" and who am I to argue with that? I could use ...
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Shoot Festival

News

It's great to preview the 2019 SHOOT Festival which offers "a platform for Coventry & Warwickshire's emerging artists to shoot from".
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The Bonnevilles at the Zephyr Lounge

News

Many thanks to Stuart Smith of Leamington's Seismic Records for a heads-up about an upcoming show he is promoting at The Zephyr Lounge on ...
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"Beauty Scarred" EP by King of the Alps

Review

This is something of a record for me (pun intended): I am reviewing an EP which I have been enjoying for over four months & now it is on the brink of ...
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Clemency at the Magic Lantern

Review

As I was sitting watching Clemency last evening at the Magic Lantern, the thought which went through my head was ‘how lucky I am' to be there ...
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Rich Keogh at Temperance

Media

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Blind faith at Temperance - 1

Media

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R.E.M. By Stipe - The Definitive R.E.M. Tribute

Feature

Catch 22 Promotions presents: Stipe - The Definitive R.
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Blind Faith supported by Rich Keogh at the Magic Lantern

Review

I started composing this review while last night's concert was still in progress & after a while realised that it was in danger of becoming a ...
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Abz Winter EP: Safe XX

Review

ABZ WINTEREP: Safe XX Sixteen year-old Abz Winter  from Stretton on Dunsmore has launched her debut EP.
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Ward & Parker live at the Magic Lantern

Review

 Leamington music lovers will need little reminder of the virtuoso skills of John Parker which he has displayed to chart topping success and ...
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"Ole Cherry Tree" by Stone Bear

Review

We are lucky to have more than our fair share of excellent blues practitioners locally: not only do they all possess an obvious love of the form as ...
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"Parallel Lines" EP by Naomi Beth

Review

I suppose that a very traditional & perhaps sometimes overlooked route to discovering new favourite music is by going to see an artist you admire & ...
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Jack O'Bones & Taylor-Louise at the Copper Pot

Review

What a difference a day makes: after the intimate & cool jazz I experienced on Friday night with the Jazz Apples at the Magic Lantern, twenty-fours ...
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The Jazz Apples at the Magic Lantern

Review

I'll start with a personal observation: I enjoyed last night: my first time seeing the Jazz Apples (I hold my hands up on that: I'd ...
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"Blessed With A Curse" by Taylor-Louise

Review

I feel doubly privileged in that I had the pleasure of hearing Taylor-Louise play her forthcoming single "Blessed With A Curse" at her recent concert ...
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Izzie Derry & Hannah Woof return to the Magic Lantern

Review

 Under normal circumstances, reviewing, or attempting to review, precisely the same musicians I had less than four months ago (see my review on 18th ...
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The Brothers Band at the Town House

Review

It isn't particularly unusual of me to review acts playing at the Town House in Leamington: Jonny Roden often puts on top acts (looking forward ...
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Strummerville Coventry & Warwickshire

News

On 6th April 2019 Catch 22 Promotions in association with The Joe Strummer Foundation will present Strummerville Coventry and Warwickshire! A full ...
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Taylor-Louise & Naomi-Beth at the Magic Lantern

Review

What a treat last evening at the Magic Lantern venue at Temperance.
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Hot Music Live talks to Andy Holdcroft about Hot Music Live Presents

Interview

In a nutshell, what is Hot Music Live Presents all about?It's a showcase for musicians from Coventry and Warwickshire.
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MUSED - 08/03/2019, Zephyr Lounge Leamington Spa

News

MUSED, the UK's Number 1 MUSE tribute band will be performing at Zephyr Lounge Leamington Spa on 08/03/2019, presented by Catch 22 Promotions.
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"Stories from the She Punks" film & discussion on women's experience in music

News

When the full horrors of the behaviours which got tagged as #MeToo began to become apparent last year, like many others I was appalled to hear ...
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LIVE/WIRE & WHITESNAKE UK - A DOUBLE DOSE OF CLASSIC ROCK

Review

A quality classic rock double header this one with regular Assembly visitors and top AC/DC tribute Live/Wire joined by another fine rock tribute ...
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VALERAS Announce First UK Headline Tour, including The Kasbah

News

A Sonic PR promotion .
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The Music Council at the Stag & Pheasant

Review

After several months of being off the scene for health reasons, my wife and I were lured out on Friday 25th January at the prospect of a new band at ...
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Wes Finch & Chris Tye live at the Magic Lantern

Review

Since I've promised myself & my readers to leave off describing gigs at the Magic Lantern as "magical" (however apt) I'm going to settle ...
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Retroville at the Magic Lantern

Review

It was nearly a year ago (January 28th 2018) that I reported in the pages of "Hot Music Live" that Holly Hewitt & David Page of Retroville were ...
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Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes at The Empire, 16/2/2019

News

A Sonic PR promotion .
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"The Tourist" by Man Made Moon

Review

 One particular joy in writing reviews for "Hot Music Live" is that it almost certainly introduces me to artists unknown to me at a swifter rate ...
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New single by Rosetta Fire: "Shakedown"

Review

Readers of "Hot Music Live" will not, I imagine, require reminding of my admiration for Rosetta Fire: so equally they'll not be surprised to ...
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'Hope' Album, Local Musicians & The Stratford Link Project

News

Doug Armstrong tells me firmly that he's the not a musician.
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CLASSIC ROCK SOUNDS OF AC/DC AND WHITESNAKE SET TO SHAKE THE ASSEMBLY

News

Yet another very welcome return to Leamington for tribute band extraordinaire Live/Wire and their explosive tribute to both the Bon Scott and Brian ...
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Wars + Last Hounds + Behind Blue Eyes + Evade Escape

News

Catch 22 Promotions has put together an amazing 4 band bill at Zephyr Lounge in Leamington Spa on 25th January to celebrate the release of ...
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Swing from Paris at Coffee #1 Warwick

News

Swing frm Paris play gypsy jazz in the spirit of Django Reinhardt and Stefan Grapelli, fiery, driven and joyful.
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2018 - My Live Music Highlights

Photo gallery

What a fab year this has been for me on the live music front with amazingly 3 gigs making my all time top 10, namely The Rolling Stones rocking the ...
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HAZEL O' CONNOR LIVE AT THE LEAMINGTON ASSEMBLY 2018 - MORE PICS

Photo gallery

Thanks very much to HML's very own Alan Moores for his wonderful review of Hazels recent very special Assembly Breaking Glass themed show which ...
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Lode4 at the Somerville

Review

On a cold winter night, it's so good to be curled up in a cosy pub with great company.
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Wrongmas 2018

Review

Every Yuletide, Johnny Satsangi of APE Promotions gifts to us is a multi artist gig at the Zephyr Lounge under the "Wrongmas" banner, always promoted ...
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Clemency at the Magic Lantern

Review

I find myself drifting into describing gigs at the Magic Lantern as "magical": unfortunately the label is accurate.
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"ROCK AND ROLL DREAMS COME TRUE" RAISES £393.50 FOR "THE CINNAMON TRUST"

News

Just had the receipt back from The Cinnamon Trust and the amount raised for them by my recent "ROCK AND ROLL DREAMS COME TRUE" live music photo ...
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"Hands On" by Chasing Deer

Review

I do hope that you'll remember about two years ago Paul Englefield interviewed one of the most exciting local bands from our area Chasing Deer ...
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Interview With Saxophonist Dionne Sambrook

Interview

Dionne is a musician in demand, she's in two busy bands and regularly participates in Stratford's Jazz Jams as we'll as working  for ...
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"No Congregation EP" by Caleb Murray

Review

I imagine many "Hot Music Live" readers have seen Caleb Murray play live over the past few years: maybe at one of his frequent open mic appearances ...
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Hazel O'Connor & Breaking Glass film and live performance

Review

The poster lure was that this event was to be "a rare screening of the digitally re-mastered uncut version of the film, followed by an intimate Q&A ...
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"ROCK AND ROLL DREAMS COME TRUE" RAISES £415.85 FOR "ZOE'S PLACE" BAB

News

Just had my first certificate from the one of the charities that benefited from my recent "Rock and Roll Dreams Come True" live music photo ...
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Fontaines D.C. come to Coventry Central Library

News

A Sonic PR promotion .
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Interview with Rachel Reynolds from Room 17 by Holly Hewitt

Interview

It was great to check in with lead vocalist of Room 17,  Rachel Reynolds.
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Izzie Derry & Hannah Woof at the Magic Lantern

Review

You can keep your headphones & your immersive sound systems.
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"Twenty-Three" by Taylor-Louise

Review

There can be no doubt that anyone who loves local music is united in recognising one of the fastest emerging significant artists from Coventry & ...
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STEVE WALWYN - UP CLOSE AND PERSONAL AT THE CATALAN

Review

Wonderful stories from Mr Walwyn prompted by well set questions from our very own Holly Hewitt along with a few from the audience started this ...
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"Trouble" by Matt Cattell

Review

I'm delighted to be able to review here in "Hot Music Live" the brand new single "Trouble" by one of Coventry & Warwickshire's most ...
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"Pick Me Up" by the Silver Wye

Review

If like me you enjoy the music of Wes Finch you have already heard, maybe one of his solo albums, his work with the (Rude) Mechanicals which I ...
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"You Saw Something" by Satsangi

Review

  I imagine that I speak for many when I say state that the new Satsangi album has been greatly anticipated by the local music community.
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"Busking Turf Wars" screening at the Magic Lantern

Review

Welcome to my first film review for "Hot Music Live".
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The Mechanicals Band at the Magic Lantern

Review

There are few finer feelings than being immersed in the finest music in an intimate setting so it not merely impacts on your hearing but defines your ...
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THEATRE OF HATE - Confirm 'Sensou' UK Tour for November & December

Feature

A Sonic PR promotion .
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Dreaming of Rock and Roll with Andrew Lock

Feature

One of the great things about our local scene is the mutually beneficial collaboration between photographers and performers.
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ROCK AND ROLL DREAMS CAME TRUE

Photo gallery

THANK YOU'SSpecial Thank You's ToThe Oak House and in particular Jeff & Sarah for the use of the function room and for looking after us on ...
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Tierra Buena Jazz Band at "The Ansty"

Review

A superb night was had by one and all at The Ansty on Monday 22nd October.
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‘Go-Spell-Truth-Heaven' by Daffod"i"ll

Review

 So here it is, the fourth solo album by former Gods Toys/I singer & front man Dill (now performing as Daffod'i'll): ...
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WILDWOOD KIN -SIMPLY STUNNING

Review

To steal a well known phrase (from a program I admit is a guilty pleasure!) FAB-U-LOUS, Wildwood Kin were simply stunning and after just a single ...
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Agoraphobia at The Zephyr Lounge, 3/11/2018

News

A Catch 22 Promotions promotion .
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Luna Kiss, 2/11/18, The Tin Music and Arts Coventry

News

A Catch 22 Promotions promotion .
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"Das Kapital" by ENGRAM

Review

I hope that many of you will recollect the words of "Hot Music Live's" Paul Englefield in July when he reviewed the ENGRAM track "Karl Marx" (a ...
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Dream Wife at The Central Library, 27/10/2018

News

A Sonic PR promotion .
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Rosetta Fire New Single "Last Road To Rome"

News

A Fat Penguin PR promotion .
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DR. FEELGOOD - BACK IN TOWN AND DELIVERING IN STYLE

Photo gallery

Always a highlight of the Leamington live music scene when Steve Walwyn brings the boys to town for a hometown gig (well for Steve!), a night of the ...
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Photographer Andrew Andrew Lock in the news

News

It's cool when someone takes a decent photo of your act.
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Satsangi & Dr Feelgood at the Assembly

Review

I had already had every intention of popping along to see one of my all time favourite bands, Dr Feelgood at the Assembly last evening but it was a ...
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ROCK AND ROLL DREAMS COME TRUE - THE FINAL UPDATE

Photo gallery

Less than 2 weeks to go now so here is my final update on my upcoming charity photo exhibition and sale.
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"We'll Live and Die in These Towns" at the Belgrade Theatre

Review

(Musical) plays constructed from a selection of songs not originally written to tell a coherent narrative have a very chequered history.
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APE Promotions present "Alternative Sounds"

Review

Collaboration is of course great in music and when like minded people work together, real magic can be catalysed.
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DR. FEELGOOD - STEVE WALWYN AND THE BOYS BACK IN TOWN

Photo gallery

An autumn treat is in store for the many local blues and rock fans as our very own Steve Walwyn brings the feel-good factor back to the Leamington ...
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FISH BACK IN TOWN - CLUTCHING AT STRAWS & A FEW NEWBIES

Photo gallery

Thanks to The Classic Rock Society this was the third show I have managed to catch while Fish is saying a live goodbye to his final (a masterpiece in ...
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The Lounge Club at the Leamington Beer and Music festival 2018

Photo gallery

For a sophisticated latin-tinged jazz combo, the Lounge Club clearly knew when to turn on a rock and roll attitude to complement the 75+ beers and ...
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Hot Music Live introducing....

News

On 20th October, we'll be hosting an exciting and eclectic lineup of local acts at the Zephyr Lounge.
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I want three volunteers, you, you and you

Feature

Of course, you can crack open your piggy bank, walk into any W.
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LEAMINGTON BEER + MUSIC FESTIVAL 2018 - THE SATURDAY AFTERNOON LIVE MUSIC

Photo gallery

Had not originally planned a visit this year as a little snowed under but to answer a request (was chuffed to be asked of course!) I made my way to ...
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Top music line-up for Kenilworth Arts Festival 2018

News

MOBO Award-winning pianist Zoe Rahman, and BBC Radio 2 Folk Award winners Josienne Clarke and Ben Walker are among the musical attractions at the ...
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Honky Tonk Rose at Leamington Food & Drink Festival

Review

Honky Tonk Rose always promise their audiences "three chords & the truth" but on this occasion they also served up, appropriately for the occasion, ...
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Godiva Festival 2018

Review

Firstly an apology: this is not & cannot pretend to be a broad overview of the 2018 Godiva Festival (the 20th in fact): I think that is beyond anyone ...
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Emily Mae Winters - October 2018 Tour

News

A  James Soars Media Services promotion .
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Delia Derbyshire takes centre stage in Noctium Theatre's "Hymns for Robots"

News

I am obliged as ever to Heather Kincaid at the Belgrade Theatre for her heads-up on a new music centred production.
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Letitia George at Leamington Pride

Photo gallery

A powerful and engaging performance from Letitia George at Leamington Pride.
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HENLEY MUSIC FESTIVAL 2018 - MY BLINK AND YOU'LL MISS IT VISIT

Review

Afraid to say the weather for my proposed Sunday visit to this years event in the beautiful town of Henley-In-Arden put me off but I did get over to ...
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Debut single by Clemency

Review

The APE Promotions nights organised by Johnny Satsangi can be very loud, powerful & even raucous affairs.
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Izzie Derry live at the Godiva Festival: not once but twice

News

While everyone at "Hot Music Live" is getting excited about the "Hot Music Live Introducing" night at the Zephyr Lounge on 20th October in ...
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From The Jam "All Mod Cons - 40th Anniversary Tour" Autumn 2018

News

A Republic Media promotion …From The Jam: Website // Facebook // Twitter + support Nine Below Zero: Website // Facebook // Twitter"Blown away ...
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Jordan Allen play Camper Calling Festival on 25th August

News

Jordan Allen, a four-piece band from Bolton, play Camper Calling Festival on 25th August at 2pm amongst their upcoming string of festival dates.
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CROPREDY 2018 - MY TWO DAYS IN THE COUNTRY, COME RAIN AND SHINE

Photo gallery

After my first ever visit to Fairport's Cropredy Convention last year on the Saturday I was pleased to be invited back with my camera again this ...
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"Mill Street Blues" by Chris Gibbons

Review

If you like your music of the blues kind, you may well have seen Chris Gibbons play live.
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"Old Skool" by Crokodile Tears

Review

Tell me: are you "Old Skool"?Crokodile Tears  have been releasing albums now for some 33 years since their eponymous debut when they were known as ...
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Crokodile tears - Hippies in plain clothes

Review

In the classic rock arena, it's the epic themes that matter, burning casinos, the desperate camaraderie of the battlefield and the countdown to ...
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"Art in the Park" 2018: some personal reflections

Review

Firstly a caveat: this is not (unfortunately) a comprehensive review of both days of Leamington's 2018 "Art in the Park": personal commitments & ...
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Chasing Deer at Art in the Park 2018

Photo gallery

An upbeat set of well-chosen classics and catchy melodic originals.
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ART IN THE PARK 2018, 4TH/5TH AUGUST 2018 - THE MUSIC

Photo gallery

This summer the outdoor live music scene in Leamington and Warwick has been pretty much non-stop with it seems events most weekends and last weekend ...
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Rosa Francesca chats to Holly Hewitt

Interview

Rosa is a musician who has taken a really exciting path using technology.
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ROCK AND ROLL DREAMS COME TRUE - PHOTO EXHIBITION/SALE UPDATE

News

Hi all latest news on my charity photo/exhibition taking place in Leamington Spa this Autumn.
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WARWICK FOLK FESTIVAL 2018 - 3 VISITS, PLENTY OF RAIN AND GREAT MUSIC

Photo gallery

This years festival was a little weather affected (after all these weeks of constant sunshine as well!) but the folkies are a hardy bunch and the ...
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"Fire in the Belly" launch

Review

What a great combination: the launch of a great new book on the history of Leamington & area music in a wonderful new venue accompanied by some great ...
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"Only the Night Knows" by Cary L

Review

Cary Lord's musical career has touched the lives & ears of a great many people, even if her name is scandalously less known to some of them.
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HEAD Relaunch event

Review

If people think that the closure last autumn of Leamington's HEAD Records was a blow to the music lovers of Leamington: they were wrong.
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Album review: Oh, silly me by BiiJ

Review

A women gently chides herself for a missed opportunity.
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Live Music Lives Locally

News

Live music lives in our area! Two captivating, yet very different concerts are coming up in the next few days, not many miles apart, sharing one ...
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Jazz jam at the Somerville

Photo gallery

A great nights' jamming with the Loungers, the Clubbers and their guests tackling tunes from the Great American Songbook through to modal ...
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CANNED HEAT - RAISING THE TEMPERATURE AT THE ASSEMBLY

Photo gallery

One of the shorter sets I have seen but what it lacked in length it more than made up for it in quality and of course it was a chance to see one of ...
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Big Help Music Showcase @ The Fusilier

Review

I have been attending the Big Help Music Showcases on and off for a number of years now, but the event at The Fusilier on 20th July 2018 was ...
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"Alternative Sounds" celebration event

Review

The purposes of this event were several: having released a four track EP and two 21 track albums of "the cream of Coventry & Warwickshire music, ...
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CROPREDY FESTIVAL 2018 - A BRIEF PREVIEW

Photo gallery

As I have mentioned before I had a wonderful experience at my first Cropredy Festival last year when I managed to get a pass for the Saturday (mainly ...
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Hazel O'Connor - Special "An Evening with..." shows announced

News

A Sonic PR promotion .
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"Read All About It"

Review

If anyone remembers my article of July 10th in which I looked forward to the Belgrade Theatre's takeover of the former "Coventry Evening ...
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NAPTON FESTIVAL 2018 - ROCKING IN THE SUN

Photo gallery

Hottest ever Napton Festival weather wise (in my years covering the festival anyway) and the music was just as hot this year with possibly the best ...
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Folk on the Water Festival final night.

Review

The plethora of summer music festivals that take place around the world offer music lovers many opportunities to see top-flight and established ...
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Alternative sounds 2

Review

Checklist:  please tick all that apply.
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THE BON JOVI EXPERIENCE BRING THE NEW JERSEY SOUND TO LEAMINGTON

Photo gallery

An extremely hot and packed Zephyr and a tribute band up there with the very best I have ever seen playing a blinder.
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A LOOK AHEAD TO THIS YEARS WARWICK FOLK FESTIVAL 26th - 29th July

Photo gallery

The beautiful town of Warwick always comes to life for its annual Folk Festival which as well as at the main Warwick School site spreads its wings ...
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New project from Blind Faith

News

I thought that I'd share with you hot news (within the last hour) from highly rated local duo Blind Faith (John Garrett on keyboards & Faith ...
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"Read All About It!" featuring Lucy Anne Sale

News

A couple of weeks ago, I was mourning the loss of the former "Coventry Evening Telegraph" building as a venue (though looking forwards to the ...
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SugarDaddies Blues Party

Photo gallery

Very much at home in the snug charm of the Somerville arms, the Blues Party sits comfortably between a classy blues gig and a flexible session.
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MY BRIEF VISIT TO THE LEAMINGTON PEACE FESTIVAL 2018

Photo gallery

For this years festival it was the early shift for me from just after 11am (for the first band) until around 2.
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Elizabeth Cornish and Beth Dyson at The Tool Shed Cafe

Review

Elizabeth Cornish at the Tool Shed.
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"Alternative Sounds" at Coventry Pride 2018 at the CET Popup

Review

In its relatively short lifetime, the former "Coventry Evening Telegraph" building has become a superb & iconic venue with a tremendous momentum over ...
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Joe Dolman - All Saints Church, Leamington Spa

News

A Fat Penguin Management promotion .
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NAPTON FESTIVAL 2018 (6th & 7th July ) - A PREVIEW

Photo gallery

Getting close to that time of the year again when the beautiful village of Napton puts on its wonderful annual music festival in the grounds of the ...
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THE STONES ROCK THE RICOH WITH ‘SPECIAL' GUESTS

Review

A bucket list gig this one for me being a Stones fan of many years standing but having never seen them on stage.
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"Swipe Right with Deathsex Bloodbath"

Review

With my involvement in the "Alternative Sounds" project, quite a few of my pieces tend to reflect that side of music: the artists of quality but not ...
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"We'll Live And Die In These Towns" launch

News

We remain so fortunate to have in our area the Belgrade Theatre with its superb history of promoting innovative new work, fostering new talent & ...
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WARWICK FOOD FESTIVAL 2018, THE MUSIC, A FAREWELL & A DOWNPOUR

Photo gallery

As usual for this festival I made my way to Warwick Market place to see what was going on music wise and yet again Leamington's 14 Records did a ...
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Crokodile Tears News

News

It is a very busy time for cult local band Crokodile Tears.
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Chalk Drawings at the Town House

Review

I hope anyone reading this remembers my April 6th review of Chalk Drawings' current (concept) album 'Grand Union'? Perhaps that's ...
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Morocco Dave at the CET Popup

Review

It is a huge shame that the superb opportunities for performance that the CET Popup has offered are only lasting a short while: though plans for a ...
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Fred's House at The Big Comfy Bookshop

Review

Michael McEntee knows how to pick 'em and his bill for one of his twice monthly "comfy and acoustic" sessions illustrated his talent in this ...
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Daria Kulesh at The Treehouse Bookshop Kenilworth

Review

Daria Kulesh accompanied by Jonny Dyer is currently on tour publicising both her "Spring Delights" EP and the fact that a third full album is in ...
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Icey Stanley interview

Interview

You may have already heard of Coventry native Icey Stanley who featured on Ironik's album 'Truth Be Told'.
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"Anywhere" single by Fall Girl

Review

It has been such a privilege this morning to get an exclusive preview of the new single from one of our area's top talents, Fall Girl.
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Grand Central Big Band at Brackley

Photo gallery

Here are all 20 of the  Great Central Big Band who deliver bold, sophisticated Mike Kemp arrangements of jazz standards from the big band era and ...
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First "Alternative Sounds" gig

News

As we wait for hard copies to go on sale of "Alternative Sounds: Volume Two", the "Alternative Sounds" team have turned their attention to the next ...
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LAURENCE JONES - TELLING THE TRUTH AT THE ZEPHYR

Photo gallery

No support just two hours of the finest modern blues around curtesy of our local boy Laurence and his red hot, explosive band and talking of his band ...
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Ska Town - Ghost Town

News

I recently greatly enjoyed the "Remembering Coventry: Ghost Town Haunting #1" event at the Shopfront Theatre in Coventry, watching carefully selected ...
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Honky Tonk Rose at the Oak House

Review

I have seen locally based Country supergroup Honky Tonk Rose several times since their formation.
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ROCK AND ROLL DREAMS COME TRUE - THE LIVE MUSIC PHOTOGRAPHY OF ANDREW LOCK 2008-2018

News

I have the first details of my photo exhibition taking place in Leamington Spa this autumn and hope some of you will put it in your diary and there ...
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Limitless Reverberation: Mugenkyo Taiko Drummers perform live at the Belgrade Theatre

News

Many thanks to Heather Kincaid of the Belgrade for the heads up that Europe's premier touring Taiko ensemble will be bringing their explosive ...
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The Bonnevilles at The Zephyr Lounge, Wed 30th May 2018

News

A Sonic PR promotion .
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Oliver Darling at the Town House

Review

It was several years ago that I first saw the excellent trash/garage/rock & roll band the Dirty Robbers & frankly loved them.
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"Love & Peace !" by Daffod"i"ll

Review

One of the local bands once tipped with a lot of confidence by many people for stardom  was Gods Toys: despite radio play, TV performances and great ...
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"Talk on the Radio" by Keith Fabrique & the Missing Links

Review

Keith Fabrique is a name familiar to very many local music lovers: not least because with the many roles he plays in our music, he has so many ...
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"Alternative Sounds: Volume Two"

News

Another very proud moment for the team at "Alternative Sounds" who  can now announce the tracklisting for Volume 2 of "Alternative Sounds": more of ...
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"Alternative Sounds: Vol 2" free download taster

News

As a taster to the extremely imminent release of "Alternative Sounds: Volume Two", the latest compilation showcasing "the cream of Coventry & ...
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"Grand Union" by Chalk Drawings

Review

Years ago, I am not sure I could imagine myself reviewing a concept album.
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PLANET ROCK BRINGS LAURENCE JONES BACK TO THE ZEPHYR

Photo gallery

One of our very best local blues men Laurence Jones is back on home turf this May when he performs at The Zephyr Lounge on Friday 4th in conjunction ...
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Blind Faith Debut EP: "I've Waited"

Review

It is good, so soon after reviewing a live Blind Faith performance when I saw them collaborating with Chalk Drawings at APE Promotions' "Surreal ...
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Tierra Buena Jazz Band at The Ansty Club

Review

Ansty is a village and civil parish in Warwickshire and  was part of the County of the City of Coventry until that county was dissolved in 1842.
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From Howling Wolf to Spaghetti Westerns: a conversation with Blues Extra

Interview

Five against one sounds like risky odds.
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SLy Old Dogs & Friends

Review

What do local folk musicians do on their night off? They turn up at a Sly Old Dogs & Friends gig, sit in a (sort of) circle and entertain each other.
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"Cats"

Review

In 2008, a young man with a passion for theatre started his own acting project, although he had produced and directed a play at school when he was ...
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Ape Promotions

Photo gallery

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Ape Promotions

Photo gallery

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Ape Promotions

Photo gallery

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"Matters of the Heart" by King of the Alps

Review

What on earth do you expect from a debut album from a band comprising (a) a drummer from various acclaimed local bands who now plays guitar (b) the ...
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APE Surreal Deal

Review

I've said it before, but it bears repeating that the APE nights promoted by Johnny Satsangi represent the best musical value for money around.
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"Down the Rabbit Holes" EP by Ross Darby

Review

It is a real privilege & pleasure to be able to review the new EP by Ross Darby entitled "Down the Rabbit Holes" which will be released on Friday ...
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Sister Act

Review

Live and loud, full of action, hilariously funny but containing a surprising amount of pathos, the Interesting Theatre production of Sister Act is a ...
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Reverend Robert at the Town House, Leamington

Review

This was something of a coup for Jonny Roden's "Tunehouse at the Townhouse" night: a really interesting specialist musician from Charleston, ...
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Spear Of Destiny at The Zephyr Lounge, Fri 1st June 2018

News

A Sonic PR promotion .
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The Zombies at The Assembly, Wed 13th June 2018

News

A Sonic PR promotion .
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MAGNUM / REBECCA DOWNES - TWO FAB SETS

Review

I was reviewing this show for The Classic Rock Society Magazine and wanted to share with you a few of my photos and say a few words about this fab ...
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Idles at The Central Library, Coventry - 14th April

News

A Sonic PR promotion .
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Cara Pickering and The Gallery nominated for Kenilworth Worthies business awards

News

We're lucky to have many active music venues in our area.
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Tea and Cakes and Rock'nRoll - Steamchicken at Harbury Village Hall

Review

Currently touring their latest album, Look Both Ways, Warwickshire's own Steamchicken took a day off from the trail of pubs, bars and ...
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BON JOVI EXPERIENCE - RESCEDULED ZEPHYR LOUNGE GIG

News

Due to the bad weather tonights (2nd March) gig by the Bon Jovi Experience at The Zephyr Lounge in Leamington Spa has been cancelled but the good ...
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'Stone Bear' by Stone Bear

Review

Readers may well (I hope) remember   from an earlier review, my enthusiasm for the live act of Stone Bear.
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Walking the dog; we chat to Paul Swanson about learning and teaching guitar

Interview

Fearlessly challenging the boundaries of community journalism, I'm chatting to Paul Swanson while being hassled round Leamington's Jephson ...
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Lorna Dea At The Fusilier

Review

Lorna Dea has taken over hosting the Big Help Music Showcases at The Fusilier In Leamington and The Bear in Rugby.
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Ross Darby news

News

A whole lot of great news just in from Ross Darby I'd like to share with you.
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The Howl & The Hum at The Tin, 2nd Feb 2018

Review

It's Friday 2nd Feb 2018 and we're off to see The Howl & The Hum at The Tin .
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Elastic Live at The George Inn, Brailes

Review

As part of the Valentine Day celebrations The George Inn at Lower Brailes hosted local band Elastic to entertain the crowds enjoying the warmth from ...
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Deja Vu and friends at the Somerville

Photo gallery

Somewhere in the indeterminate zone between a gig and a jam session, Deja Vu and friends featured a brace of energetic Dejas, Midweeks and ...
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The Sheep Dip Sessions Welcomes

Review

Latest in well established series of house concert in the Warwickshire village of Princethorpe, tickets for these shows are usually reserved limited ...
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The Hatstand Band @ Three

Review

Chic setting of Cafe, Bistro, Bar & Cakery (table reservations essential for dining) receives music makeover for one night a month (first Thursday) ...
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THE JOLLY ROGERS ROCK THE OAK HOUSE

Review

First live music of the year for me took place at The Oak House (formally The liberal Club for us oldies) and was a night of classic rock by a band ...
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Henry's Rhythm & Blues Band at The Jolly Abbot

Review

The Jolly Abbot, in the Abbotts Farm area of Rugby is a pub that is going through a renaissance and rebuilding it's reputation after a low ...
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Georgie, rising rock soulstress hits Warwick w/ Jake Bugg (8 Mar)

News

GEORGIETO RELEASE NEW EP - IMPACTS 16th FEBSUPPORTING JAKE BUGG ACROSS UK & EUMansfield troubadour GEORGIE has announced her new three track EP "Too ...
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RedFaces live at The Tin in Coventry on 16th Feb 2018

News

REDFACESNEW SINGLE ‘MESSED UP' RELEASED FEB 23RDUK TOUR DATES IN FEBRUARY"Another brilliant band from Sheffield" – Huw Stephens"These are ...
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Rack 'n Ruin Band At Willow & Tool's Music Parlour

Review

Willow & Tool's Music Parlour What a delight was in store for visitors to the Music Parlour on Sunday 4th February Top of the bill, was ...
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Ape Surreal Deal at The Zephyr Lounge

News

Ape Promotions promotion .
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Tenebrous Liar at The Tin

News

A Sonic PR promotion .
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Retroville at Tunehouse at the Townhouse

Review

The law of averages suggests that many "Hot Music Live" readers will have seen & heard Holly Hewitt (vocals) & David Page (guitar & vocals) perform ...
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Jacob & Drinkwater @ The Guildhall

Review

Once again slipping past the usual Hot Music Live remit boundary into neighbouring county to visit Leicester, I promise later to to reach into a ...
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2017 band fees survey

Feature

Here are the results of the Hot Music Live musician fees survey for 2017.
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Bash Street Blues Band at the Somerville

Photo gallery

Frankly, it's a bit of a shock to stroll into the Somerville on a Thursday and see a line of Marshals and Fenders rather than the usual ...
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The Peas at Willow and Tool's Music Parlour

Review

At first glance Willow and Tool's Music Parlour is a typical back of the pub Folk Club.
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Dave Broadfield and Johnny Webber at Quigley's Rugby

Review

With no preamble, Dave and Johnny launch into their first number at Quigleys.
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Big Help Music Showcase

Review

You know how it is when plan A falls apart you have to look for a plan B.
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"Alternative Sounds: Volume One"

News

Readers  of "Hot Music Live" will recollect my previous article (September 21st )  on the launch of the "Alternative Sounds EP", a 7" vinyl release ...
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My pick of the 2018 Leamington Assembly/Zephyr Lounge gigs announced so far.

Photo gallery

Happy New Year AllOf course very early days so plenty more to be added to the venues 2018 schedule but here are a few of the shows announced so far ...
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FISH - A stunning Assembly performance on a cold winters night

Photo gallery

Thrilled to have the opportunity to review this amazing show for The Classic Rock Society Magazine which for a while looked like a ‘will it go ...
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Wrongmas 2

Review

There can be no better value for money gigs locally than the ones Ape Promotions put on at the Zephyr Lounge.
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Speak, Brother & the Folly Brothers at the Zephyr Lounge

Review

It was most interesting to catch a bill at the Zephyr Lounge featuring two bands which are being so hotly tipped by the local musical cognoscenti.
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THE LIZARD KING HITS TOWN

Photo gallery

Despite a couple of line-up changes since The Doors Alive amazed me at The Leamington Assembly back in 2012 the magic was definitely still there for ...
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The Matadors: our area's Joe Meek band

Feature

Most readers of this piece will know of Joe Meek & his revolutionary production techniques, but fewer will be aware of his work with one of the top ...
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Honorary Doctorates for Delia Derbyshire & Pete Chambers

News

The practice of universities awarding honorary qualifications often seems to result in the famous, rich, powerful & previously honoured getting ...
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FISH CLUTCHING AT STRAWS (AND MORE) AT THE ASSEMBLY - SUN 10TH DEC

Photo gallery

A must see this one as Fish returns to town to celebrate both the 30th anniversary of his final (and absolute masterpiece) album with Marillion ...
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Hot Music Live talks to Rob Low at Enterlude

Interview

It may be a chilly November afternoon but here in Rugby's lively Bacco bar I'm getting warmed up by a lively discussion with Robert Low.
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Enterlude Events Launch A Killer Night Of Music

Feature

An exciting new event creation venture Enterlude launch on Saturday 9th December at The Benn Hall Rugby bringing you The Killerz  (The Worlds ...
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"Alternative Sounds": Coventry & Warwickshire compilation album

News

 Between 1979 & 1981, Martin Bowes created & published eighteen copies of the highly influential fanzine "Alternative Sounds" which chronicled the ...
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The Doors Alive bringing the Morrison spirit to The Zephyr Lounge (Fri 1st Dec)

Photo gallery

One of the finest tribute bands I have ever seen in action, this band amazed me upstairs at The Assembly back in 2012 by capturing both that ...
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The London African Gospel Choir bring joy (and Graceland) to The Assembly

Review

A change from my usual rock/blues gigs this one by the renowned gospel choir who had a full electric band as well as brass section to back them up at ...
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The Mystery Lights at The Zephyr Lounge

News

A Seismic Records promotion .
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Tenebrous Liar

News

SonicPR press release .
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JOHN COGHLAN'S QUO - 12 BAR BOOGIE TIME AT THE ZEPHYR

Photo gallery

For me one of my most memorable nights at the venue for several reasons, it brought back memories of my regular visits to see Quo in action at the N.
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All blues - SugarDaddies' Blues Revue at the Zephyr

Review

How many shades of blue can you imagine? From the cool tints of gospel to the bold hues of R&B, In the moment's blues revue lit up the full ...
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PAUL SIMON'S GRACELAND ALBUM CELEBRATED AT THE ASSEMBLY

News

One of the most acclaimed albums in music history is celebrated this Sunday (12th November) at The Leamington Assembly with a full performance of the ...
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Steeleye Span, Winter 2017 UK Tour

News

James H Soars Media Services press release .
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Vince Hill "Sounding Off" at Coventry Music Museum

Review

Suddenly, Coventry Music Museum found itself celebrating its fourth birthday on Saturday 4th November 2017.
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THE IRON MAIDENS - RUNNING FREE IN LEAMINGTON SPA

Photo gallery

Ever since spotting this show on the Assembly listings earlier this year I have been looking forward to this gig by the Californian all female ...
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Nigel Clark at "Tunehouse at the Townhouse"

Review

"Tunehouse at the Townhouse" is on a fine run of form at the moment: after superb recent gigs by the Folly Brothers, the Doc Brown Trio, Stone Bear & ...
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John Otway at the Zephyr Lounge

Review

There can be few contemporary musicians who are held in as much affection by audiences as John Otway who performed at the Zephyr Lounge on Saturday ...
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LIVE/WIRE ROCK THE LEAMINGTON ASSEMBLY AGAIN

Photo gallery

The mighty sounds of AC/DC once again rang out from the Assembly stage as Live/Wire one of the top rock tribute acts in the country returned to what ...
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South Town at the Town House

Review

After the superb Stone Bear gig at Tunehouse at the Townhouse last week, this week saw another top notch act, namely the return of the splendid South ...
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HEADS DOWN & BOOGIE TIME - JOHN COGHLAN'S QUO, ZEPHYR LOUNGE FRI 3RD NOVEMBER

News

Status Quo are high up on my most attended gig list with at least 6 shows over the years dating back to 1982 and all at the Birmingham NEC and that ...
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LAURENCE JONES BACK IN TOWN SUPPORTING KENNY WAYNE SHEPHERD - LEAMINGTON ASSEMBLY MONDAY 30TH OCT

Photo gallery

Another welcome return to town for one of our very own (Shipston-on-Stour, close enough!) and after his fabulous show at the smaller Zephyr Lounge ...
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THE IRON MAIDENS TROOP INTO LEAMINGTON FOR ASSEMBLY SHOW ON FRI 27TH OCT

News

As a long time Iron Maiden fan (still remember the incredible show they put on back in the mid 80's at the Birmingham Odeon on the World Slavery ...
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Dave Pepper "Sounding Off" at Coventry Music Museum

Feature

It is not easy to think of a musician who has graced so many bands of such quality & influence & featuring such diverse styles over 40 odd years as ...
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Stone Bear at the Townhouse

Review

 Some of you may have noticed a gig on at The Squirrel in Coventry on Saturday 21st October entitled "Anthony Harty featuring Sam McNulty and ...
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BELINDA TRIUMPHANT AT THE ASSEMBLY

Review

A rare show at the venue for me without my camera (did feel a little naked!) but what a night it was with Belinda rolling back the years in ...
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LIVE/WIRE - TIME TO ROCK OUT ONCE AGAIN AC/DC STYLE AT THE ASSEMBLY (SAT 21ST OCT)

Photo gallery

Live/Wire are one of a number of top draw bands that return to the Leamington Assembly on an annual or at least every other year basis and I have ...
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The Ruts DC at the Zephyr Lounge

Review

 The Ruts DC are not admittedly a local band (so please excuse that aspect of this review), but they certainly played a local venue (the Zephyr ...
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APE Promoters' evening

Review

The most looked forward to of nights in the Leamington music scene is arguably (well I'd argue that way) the "APE Promoters" nights organised by ...
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"Alternative Sounds" EP launch

News

On Thursday 21st September 2017, Coventry Music Museum officially launched its own eponymous record label, the first release being a limited edition ...
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MOSTLY AUTUMN - 2 WONDERFUL SETS AT THE LEAMINGTON ASSEMBLY

Photo gallery

Mostly Autumn live always give value for money but this show (along with two others on the tour) gave even more as they performed two full sets, the ...
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NEW KINGSTON

News

SonicPR press release .
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Sounding Off with Nigel Lomas

Feature

On Saturday 16th September 2017, Coventry Music Museum hosted the latest Heritage Lottery funded "Sounding Off" session with a local musician of note.
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BELINDA CARLISLE - COMING TO TOWN AND SOLD OUT AT THE ASSEMBLY

Photo gallery

Really pleased that Belinda one of my favourite female singers has included Leamington as one of the dates on her tour celebrating the 30th ...
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Boudica Festival: a brand new festival exclusive to Coventry!

Feature

The Tin Music and Arts, in partnership with Bella Promotions, are launching Boudica Festival, a new annual music festival which will highlight the ...
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Music for the Mind

Feature

Mind, the mental health charity has wrangled some of the finest acts in Coventry to play together!Alex Norman, a singer and songwriter who has not ...
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Rosetta Fire EP review On the Line

Review

Since I don't work for a commercial music magazine, I have the luxury of being able to review whom I choose.
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Big Help Showcase

Review

The first of the autumn 2017 series of the Big Help Music showcases at the Bear Pub in Rugby was held on September 1st.
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Rattle and Myles Manley

Feature

RATTLE is a band that focus almost exclusively on drums and more drums, although it's much more intricate than just that.
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Westerman: Breakout from London

Feature

Westerman is a 23 year old, London based singer songwriter and a musical storyteller.
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MOSTLY AUTUMN KEEP UP THEIR REGULAR VISITS TO LEAMINGTON WITH A SHOW AT THE ASSEMBLY ON SAT 16TH SEP

Photo gallery

One of my favourite bands Mostly Autumn return to the Leamington Assembly on Saturday September 16th for what seems to be coming a regular venue for ...
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Ellie Gowers' new EP

Review

One thing which I guess always gets the pulse of a reviewer speeding up is the chance to write about someone whose musical career is just taking off: ...
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A SUNNY BANK HOLIDAY WEEKEND AT THE HENLEY MUSIC FESTIVAL & THE TOM O' THE WOOD

Photo gallery

Over the hottest August bank holiday for a long time I took in a couple of local (for me in the sticks!) music events, on the Saturday I went along ...
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MY FIRST VISIT TO THE FAMOUS FAIRPORT'S CROPREDY CONVENTION

Photo gallery

This was my first ever visit to this iconic festival (nice and close to us in this neck of the woods as well!) and I was blown away by the whole ...
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THE DIRT ROAD BLUES BAND - DEBUT GIG

Photo gallery

As soon as I heard about this new upcoming band from Steve Walwyn himself I was to say the least interested, for one it involved Steve one of my all ...
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Miss Songbird & Chris Gibbons at Apehangers

Review

This review I suppose is something of a series of tip offs to Hot Music Live readers: to be honest, my main reasons for originally attending the gig ...
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New residency for Rack and Ruin

News

New Residency for Rack and Ruin.
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MY VISIT TO THE WARWICK FOLK FESTIVAL 2017

Photo gallery

I like to when possible get along to the main festival site to soak up the atmosphere, listen to some great music and take a few photos (and possibly ...
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Miss Songbird at Art in the Park

Photo gallery

Soulful, cool jazz with a hint of vintage, the excellent Miss Songbird and friends at Art in the Park.
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NAPTON FESTIVAL 2017 - PART 2 (SATURDAY)

Photo gallery

NAPTON FESTIVAL 2017 - PART 2 (SATURDAY)For a sad reason this year my Saturday at Napton was cut short so I missed the headliners and the last 4 or 5 ...
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HENRYS RHYTHM AND BLUES BAND HELPING TO RAISE FUNDS FOR NEW VILLAGE HALL -BURTON GREEN nr KENILWORTH

Feature

HENRYS RHYTHM AND BLUES BAND HAVE EXPANDED THEIR LINE UP AND SET LISTS !!THE RECENT GIG AT THE BAGINTON OAK WAS THE FIRST GIG WITH THE NEW LINE UP .
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NAPTON FESTIVAL 2017 - PART 1 (FRIDAY)

Photo gallery

The Friday of this years festival started with one of my highlights of 2016 and another rock/blues set with plenty of Doors references by the ...
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'Sent From Coventry Too' re-released in aid of Cov Music Museum

News

An album originally launched in October 2013 showcasing Coventry & Warwickshire's musical talent has just been re-released with all proceeds ...
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Morocco Dave at Coventry Music Museum

Feature

 On Saturday 6th August 2017, the latest Artist of the Month was unveiled at Coventry Music Museum.
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The Shapes at the Zephyr Lounge

Review

Readers will recollect how in 2016, Leamington's favourite punk band The Shapes reconvened from around the world to celebrate their 39th ...
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Godiva Festival 2017: a personal perspective

Review

I have spent a couple of weeks trying to figure out how on earth to capture my Godiva Festival 2017 experience in one concise article (I was there ...
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Stone Foundation sound off at the Coventry Music Museum

News

On Saturday 22nd July 2017, Neil Sheasby (bass), Neil Jones (guitar & vocals) and Rob Newton (percussion & backing vocals) from one of the biggest ...
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The Blend + Brixton Alley at The Arches

News

Event promotion .
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Ed Donovan and His Wandering Moles at Newbold Chapel.

Review

Ed Donovan and the Wandering Moles.
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HAYSEED DIXIE/ THIRTEEN STARS LEAMINGTON ASSEMBLY

Photo gallery

**FOR PERSONAL REASONS THIS MAY BE MY LAST PIECE FOR A WHILE, THANK YOU TO THOSE OF YOU THAT HAVE GIVEN ME POSITIVE FEEDBACK AND HOPE TO BE BACK ...
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18/07/2017 The Tin - Gurdan Thomas

Event promotion .
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Fourteen years of the Tump Folk Club.

14 years at the TumpThere are not too many folk clubs that can boast fourteen years of continuous existence having met every week since inception.
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MUSIC FOR MYTON, LILLINGTON CLUB - SATURDAY REVIEW

I only made it to the Saturday of Peter Drews latest ‘Music For Myton' event which took place at The Lillington Club over the weekend of ...
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Blues at the Cape

Folk On The Water Music FestivalThe mid term night of this travelling music festival was held at the Cape of Good Hope pub in Warwick.
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MUSIC FOR MYTON, LILLINGTON CLUB - PREVIEW

Peter Drew is back raising money for Myton Hospice with a two day music event at the Lillington Club taking place on Friday 30th June/Saturday 1st ...
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LEAMINGTON PEACE FESTIVAL 2017 - SATURDAY

This year must have been the hottest weather I can remember at the festival in all of my years attending but as I had my first ever attempt at live ...
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LEAMINGTON PEACE FESTIVAL 2017 - SUNDAY

More of a flying visit for me on the Sunday of this years festival but the music I caught was certainly top draw.
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NAPTON FESTIVAL 2017 PREVIEW

The Napton Festival always one of my highlights of the local live music calendar returns to its now long standing home on the grounds of the Village ...
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Chris Sidwell speaks out & sings too

It will not surprise you, i imagine, to learn that a talk by one of our area's most individual & quirky musical talents would be both highly ...
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Jay Riley Album Launch

Jay Riley, who runs the Stratford Jazz Club, launched his latest album "Light from Dawn" at Kenilworth Jazz Club earlier this week.
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HAYSEED DIXIE - IN TOWN FOR AMERICAN INDEPENDENCE DAY

American bluegrass rockers Hayseed Dixie will be celebrating their countries independence day this year by playing the Leamington Assembly on (of ...
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Chris Gibbons trio at Scally Ally

Navigating the subtle currents between blues and jazz, the Chris Gibbons delivered a stand out set that combined technical sophistication with ...
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Erasure in huge Coventry show with Robbie Williams

Following the release of their 17th studio album 'World Be Gone' in May, synth pop icons - ERASURE - have lined up a huge live show with ...
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WARWICK FOOD FESTIVAL 2017 - A FEAST OF GREAT MUSIC

Last Sunday (28th May) the Warwick Food Festival returned to the towns Market Place and once again the musical part of the proceedings was supplied ...
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Jay Riley Quartet debut album launch

Exploring the light and dark experiences of the past 10 years, Jay Riley released his debut album, Light from Dawn (https://jayriley.
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HENRYS RHYTHM AND BLUES BAND ..PICNIC AT THE FARM

NEWLY REFORMED HENRYS RHYTHM AND BLUES BAND HAVE BEEN ASKED TO PLAY AT LONG MEADOW FARM IN BURTON GREEN NEAR KENILWORTH ON 10TH JUNE 2017 .
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TRINITY 2 LEAMINGTON ASSEMBLY - A WONDERFUL DAY

The prog rock community joined together once again at the Assembly for the return of the Trinity charity event, another great success which this time ...
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We talk to Peter Drew about Music for Myton 2017

The sun's out and the Hot Music Live team have emerged from their winter caves to soak up some fine festival vibes at Party in the Dell, Scally ...
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The Loaded celebrate 10 years together

Happy tenth birthday to top local band The Loaded, comprising Paul Quinn on vocals and guitar, Jon Harte who plays lead guitar, Jez Hanley on bass ...
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Sam Powell Blues Band at the Party in the Dell

The Party in the Dell is a fabulous intimate community event at Leamington's Dell Park.
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RIVERSIDE - PROG MAGIC AT THE ASSEMBLY

I had another trip to the Leamington Assembly on Sunday 21st of May to review and photograph an amazing show by Polish prog rockers Riverside for The ...
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Gig postponed

Apologies this show has been postponed by the venue due to double bookings.
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KING KING & BAD TOUCH ROCKING THE BLUES AWAY AT THE ASSEMBLY

Last Thursday (18th May) I was really pleased to have been sent by The Classic Rock Society Magazine to review the show by the fabulous classic ...
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Blues Extra at the Squirrel

THANKS TO GRAEME KIDD FOR THIS REVIEW!It's been a while since I'd seen Blues Extra perform, and to have a chance to catch up with some ...
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Getting closer to Trinity 2 at the Leamington Assembly on Saturday 27th May

Just another shout out for what should be an amazing day and night of live music and fund raising on Saturday May 27th at The Leamington Assembly ...
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"Godiva Rocks" Press Launch

Coventry's Belgrade Theatre has an enviable track record of launching great new pieces & especially in recent years ones with a local focus of ...
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We review Chasing Deer's new EP Moving On

Us lucky, lucky people at Hot Music Live got to check out the new Moving On EP from Chasing Deer.
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A Different Thread at Newbold Chapel

Folk at Newbold Chapel.
 [9 images] More


GrassRoutes EP Launch gig

The local Leamington based ska/reggae band GrassRoutes launched their new EP – Routes EP at Kelsey's bar in Leamington Spa on Friday 5th May.
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THE OAK HOUSE DEMENTIA UK FUNDRAISER

There was a diverse selection of (for the most part original) live music on offer at this fundraising event for Dementia UK put together by local ...
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WALTER TROUT ROCKS THE ASSEMBLY AGAIN

Two of the best shows I have seen over my 8 years covering gigs at The Assembly have come curtesy of this great man and masterful purveyor of the ...
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Izzie's debut album launch, Goodbye

Promotion .
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In Deep Waters at The Wild Boar

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Glass Bones at the Wild Boar

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Free Galaxy at The Wild Boar

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"Delia @ 80" events at Coventry Music Museum

Friday 5th May 2017 would, in a perfect world, have been the day Delia Derbyshire celebrated her birthday.
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TRINITY 2 - PROG ROCK CHARITY EVENT AT THE LEAMINGTON ASSEMBLY ON SATURDAY 27TH MAY

Back in 2014 the inaugural Trinity event took place at The Leamington Assembly with the aim to both put on a day of top quality progressive rock ...
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Local Songwriters Excel at Wildes Bar Leamington

Another exciting line-up of songwriters had been again pulled together by host Shanade Morrow, for the monthly Songwriters night at Wildes Bar & ...
 [9 images] More


The Rude Mechanicals Band at Leamington Library

Leamington Spa Library is not your typical live music venue.
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ARQ play Smooth Jazz at Riverside

The London based Jazz group ARQ, last week, played a gig at the Riverside Stratford venue, in Tiddington, to an enthusiastic crowd.
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WALTER TROUT ROARS BACK TO THE LEAMINGTON ASSEMBLY ON WED 10TH MAY

Blues legend and ex Canned Heat/John Mayall's Bluesbreakers member Walter Trout returns to the Assembly on Wednesday 10th May.
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Shanade: Artist of the Month at Coventry Music Museum

The latest Coventry and Warwickshire artist to be selected as "Artist of the Month" at Coventry Music Museum is Leamington based singer-songwriter ...
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Big Help Showcase at The Fusilier

Big Help Showcase at the Fusilier.
 [9 images] More


Interview of Shipston's Blues Star Laurence Jones

The multi award winning Blues sensation 25-year-old Laurence Jones was interviewed after his brilliant gig at the Zephyr Lounge in Leamington Spa on ...
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LAURENCE JONES - HOME TURF GIG, NEW BAND LINE UP, LIVE ALBUM RECORDING AND ROCKING UP A STORM

Yet another spectacular performance by this amazing blues artist and another on home turf (he regularly looks after what he calls his family of local ...
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DaisyBell CD Launch Party.

Daisybell CD launch 20th April 2017Attracting attention to the launch of your CD is a problem that everyone who produces such a thing has to face.
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Dill's "Sounding Off" session

It was a real privilege to be present today at the Big Lottery funded "Sounding Off" session at Coventry Music Museum by local legend Stephen Davies, ...
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Beans on Toast down the pub, at The Phoenix

A Sonic PR promotion.
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Amazing Range at Talent at April Songwriters night

The third in these excellent Songwriters nights was hosted by Leamington Spa songwriter/vocal coach Shanade, at Wildes Wine Bar in Leamington Spa ...
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MIke Hall and friends at the Kenilworth jazz club

A night of fluid, elegant standards from the very mellow Mike Hall on tenor.
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Great night of Swing with Stein's Swing Band

A great night of swing music was held on Saturday at St.
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Kara at the Great Knight Folk Club

A great night at the Great KnightAs Ray Davies said at the 2017 Radio 2 Folk Music awards in the amazing atmosphere in the grand Royal Albert Hall, ...
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MESA At Willow & Toll's Music Parlour

MESA at Willow and Tool's Music Parlour.
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LAURENCE JONES - LOCAL BLUESMAN IS BACK IN TOWN AT THE ZEPHYR LOUNGE, LEAMINGTON SPA ON WED 19TH APR

Be it jamming on stage with Steve Walwyn and Joanne Shaw Taylor, supporting King King, headlining his own shows at the Zephyr Lounge and Leamington ...
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Music at the TUMP

Not so much of concert, more like having a few friends round to sing a song or two and exchange anecdotes.
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MY EARLY LOCAL LIVE MUSIC MEMORIES

I was born in Leamington Spa at the (long closed now) Warneford Hospital in September 1963 and for a little music trivia The Beatles topped the UK ...
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Martin Bowes' "Sounding Off"

Saturday 25th March 2017 saw the latest Big Lottery funded " Sounding Off" event at Coventry Music Museum.
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Kellimarie EP Launch

Fourteen year old Coventry girl Kellimarie Willis releases her debut EP on 31st March.
 [11 images] More


Spring Fever gig at Zephyr Lounge

The Zephyr Lounge in Leamington Spa hosted, at the weekend, Spring Fever a promotion of local bands organised by APE Promotions (run by Johnny ...
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Mark Nevin (Faiground Attraction) Album Launch

It is twenty seven years since Mark Nevin was a member of Fairground Attraction along with Eddi Reader.
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LIMEHOUSE LIZZY TO ROCK THE ZEPHYR ON SATURDAY 25TH MARCH

Hot on the tails of one of the countries top classic rock tribute bands at the Zephyr Lounge in Leamington Spa (Whole Lotta Led) comes another as ...
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Stratford Folk Club's 6th Birthday Evening

The Stratford-upon-Avon Folk Club celebrated its 6th birthday this week with The Jigantics as feature act along with generous amounts of cake!The ...
 [8 images] More


Songwriters Evening at Wildes Bar

Another stellar line-up was pulled together, by local singer/vocal coach Shanade Morrow, at Wildes Wine Bar in Leamington Spa.
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Songwriters Evening at Wildes

Photos from the March 2017 session at the Songwriters evening, hosted by Shanade Marrow, at Wildes Bar.
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Brixton Alley's Homecoming Gig

The 3 piece band Brixton Alley returned home with a successful gig at the Shipston Rugby Club last weekend.
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Laurence Jones headining Shipston Proms 2017

The Shipston Proms committee is excited to announce that the 19th Shipston Proms, held between 16th June to 1st July 2017, will be headlined on the ...
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WHOLE LOTTA LED - ZEPHYR LOUNGE

Just over a year after the bands debut Zephyr Lounge show Whole Lotta Led bought their Zep magic back to the venue, unfortunately vocalist Lee was ...
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Spotlight Sessions

Catch 22 Live Spotlight sessions featuring a different artist and host every week.
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Bernard Hoskin at The Chapel Newbold

Folk on the Water's second monthly evening concert of 2017 had a superb collection of artists to entertain us.
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Jack Blackman At Willow & Tool's Music Parlour

Jack Blackman at Willow & Tool's Music parlour 5th March 2017Willow and Tool's Music Parlour is open on the first Sunday of every month at ...
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Ffion Rebecca EP Launch Party.

Ffion Rebecca EP launch 4th March 2017There can few more significant moments in a young singer's life than the launch of their first EP.
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Keith Fabrique "Sounding Off"

Saturday 26th February 2017 saw the latest Lottery funded "Sounding Off" session at Coventry Music Museum.
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WHOLE LOTTA LED RETURN TO THE ZEPHYR LOUNGE ON SATURDAY 11th MARCH

Making a welcome return to the Zephyr Lounge here in Leamington Spa on Saturday 11th March are top Led Zeppelin tribute band Whole Lotta Led who last ...
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Daria Kulesh at The Big Comfy Bookshop

Daria Kulesh at the Big Comfy BookshopA concert in which Daria Kulesh appears is no ordinary gig.
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Tazmin Barnes, a fourteen year old firecracker

Tazmin Barnes releases her Debut EP.
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The Handsome Family at The Assembly

The Handsome FamilyThe Assembly (aka A great venue to worship Satan)Sunday, 19 Feb 2017 at 7:30 PM(support: William the Conqueror)If Gomez had ...
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International Children's Games Gala

Every year for the past 21 years (with one exception) Coventry have sent city children to compete in the International Children's Games.
 [6 images] More


Toneranger meets Eve Singleton

We welcome 17 year old Eve Singleton with news on her forthcoming March EP release.
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Guilty Pleasures

Twin passion indulged as The "People Like Us" spring tour thunders into The Tree House Bookshop with Fleetwood Cave (Marion & Gregg) flushed from ...
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Kate and the Mooncats at Churchover

Kate & the Mooncats at Churchover.
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Gig Promotion: The Real Thing at Rialto Reborn, 31st Mar 2017

The Real Thing at The Rialto Reborn on Friday, March 31st.
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MY PERSONAL PICK OF THIS YEARS (so far) ASSEMBLY/ZEPHYR LOUNGE GIGS

Looking through the listings for the year so far at the Leamington Assembly and it's smaller sister venue the Zephyr Lounge there are plenty ...
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Gig promotion: Courtney Marie Andrews at The Tin, 1st Mar 2017

Courtney Marie Andrews (with support from Izzie Derry) at The Tin on Wednesday, March 1stHere's SonicPR's press release .
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Fleetwood Cave "People Like Us"

Fleetwood CaveHoly Trinity ChurchStratford Upon Avon28/01/17The most sought after seats in old town, many tickets gifted to album pledgers during a ...
 [4 images] More


Stein interviews The Handsome Family

Our very own larger-than-life character, Stein, volunteered to interview The Handsome Family.
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Sheep Dip Blues

Sheep Dip Sessions with Jim CrawfordSheep Dip sessions a regular house concert in grand home of gracious hosts Michael and Dee welcoming 40 plus ...
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Whizzy "Sounding Off"

This month's Artist of the Month at Coventry Music Museum is rapper Whizzy (Damon-Lee Smallridge) and as is customary, he came into the Museum ...
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Kellimarie hits the big time in "Got what it Takes?"

Fourteen year old Kellimarie Willis from Ryton on Dunsmore is about to be unleashed on the nation.
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Gig promotion: The Handsome Family at The Assembly, 19th Feb

The Handsome Family will be at The Assembly on Sunday, Feb 19th!Here's the official word from their promotion team at SonicPR.
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Paper Street Soap Company choose Hell!

Rugby's jolly japesters, Paper Street Soap Company, express their dissatisfaction of American politics with a brilliant new ditty .
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Simon Spillet at the Bedford Street, Leamington Spa

Contributed by Bill GibbonThe audience at Leamington's Bedford Street Bar's usual lively Wednesday night jazz jam session had a slightly ...
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Deja Vu at the Bedford Street bar

A fine night out with Deja Vu at this classy and jazz-friendly Leamington bar.
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Music at the Fusilier

Music at the Fusilier 20th January 2017The first of the regular Big Help Music's showcases in 2017 at the Fusilier in Sydenham, Leamington took ...
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"Live & Die: A Celebration of The Enemy"

Thursday 19th January 2017 saw the official launch of the new Coventry Music Museum exhibition "Live & Die: A Celebration of The Enemy" which will ...
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Big Help Showcase at the Bear

Big Help Music showcase at the Bear 13th January 2017Rather later in the month than usual, the first BHM showcase was held at the Bear, in Bilton, ...
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The dark art of chasing down gigs

Forming a band is about as straightforward as wrestling a well-greased python.
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Willow and Tool's Music Parlour

Willow And Tool's Music Parlour 8th January 2017.
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Video: DMT live at The Assembly, 8/12/2016

Last month, a 3-man Hot Music Live team (MikeD, PaulD and I - *) were at The Assembly not only taking photos of Desert Mountain Tribe, who were ...
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All Sides Now

First visit to canal side Folly Inn (Napton On The Hill) delights with fine dining, crazy antiques, dancing girls and eclectic choice of music from ...
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Train Now Standing

Secret tucked away in Lilbourne, Head Of Steam (complete with railway memorabila) restaurant and Inn hosting Winter Beer Festival.
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Wrongmass (part 1 of 2)

100% APE Promotions put on some great shows at amazingly low prices.
 [8 images] More


Wrongmass (part 2 of 2)

Continued from "Wrongmass (part 1 of 2)".
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Reef at The Assembly, Thurs 8th Dec 2016

(Continued from "Desert Mountain Tribe at The Assembly, 8/12/2016".
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Desert Mountain Tribe at The Assembly, 8/12/2016

There was no hanging about tonight, no sooner than back from the day job, I was off out again: The Assembly were squeezing in 2 bands before a club ...
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Escape

Well, this is fun; punchy but melodic.
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Irish Music Exhibition at Coventry Music Museum: input welcomed!

After the tremendous success of the 2016 exhibition, "On Bass, Sir Horace Gentleman" at Coventry Music Museum, 2017 will see an amazing new one "Live ...
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Last Acoustic session of the year at Newbold Chapel.

Acoustic Session at the ChapelThe second of what is now to be the norm, i.
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Music at the Bear

Music at the Bear.
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Big Help Music Christmas Show

There are Christmas Shows, CHRISTMAS SHOWS!, Then there is the Big Help Music Christmas Show.
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Desert Mountain Tribe, on tour with Reef

Two weeks ago, we gave you Reef's official press release for their current tour, which sees them headline at The Assembly on Thursday.
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Rheo has big day

Rheo has a big day.
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Road to be named after Delia Derbyshire

After a campaign led by Pete Chambers BEM, Director of The Coventry Music Museum & top Coventry and Warwickshire music historian, a new road is to ...
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Reef to play The Assembly

Yes, you did read that right, Reef will be at The Assembly on Thursday, December 8th! Here's the official press release.
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Hot Music Live talks to Chasing Deer

With a new home in West London and plans for tours in Europe, the U.
 [1 image] More


Coventry Music Museum Third Birthday

Today the Museum hosted a celebration of its Third Birthday with a special guest in Mark Rattray who kindly agreed to be guest of honour and took ...
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Big Comfy Folk Club

Michael McEntee puts on some really excellent concerts at his Big Comfy Bookshop in Fargo Village along Far Gosford Street in Coventry.
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LIVE/WIRE TO ROCK LEAMINGTON

On Friday 11th November the sounds of the mighty AC/DC will thunder inside the Assembly as one of the finest tribute acts around make another welcome ...
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LIVE/WIRE & FEDERAL CHARM - LEAMINGTON ASSEMBLY

Back once again at the Assembly, the Live/Wire boys and their AC/DC show looked to me an even bigger production than ever with larger speaker ...
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Unplugged at the Chapel

There was something of an experiment for Folk on the Water tonight at the lovely Chapel at Newbold venue on 11th November.
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"On Bass, Sir Horace Gentleman"

Just to remind you that if you have not yet visited Coventry Music Museum's amazing & extremely popular temporary exhibition, "On Bass, Sir ...
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Amber Falconer and her Talented Friends

MK11 Music Venue and Sports Bar is a converted barn on a farm now engulfed by the all encompassing Milton Keynes.
 [5 images] More


Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain

I chose a concert by the Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain for my first ever visit to the Butterworth Hall at the Warwick Arts Centre.
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A look at Big Help Music

"We are the UK's leading brand for artist development.
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Hot music live chats to local live music photographers

We're lucky in the Hot Music Live area to have not only a lively scene but also an enthusiastic community of music photographersOf course, a ...
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Coventry Music Museum Third Birthday

Coventry Music Museum, the museum celebrating Coventry & Warwickshire music, is celebrating its Third Birthday on Saturday 12th November.
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MOSTLY AUTUMN LEAMINGTON ASSEMBLY

An epic Assembly show by one of my two favourite bands (luckily for me the other Marillion playing the same venue 3 days later) and Mostly Autumn ...
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Folk at the Chapel

The old Methodist Chapel at Newbold on Avon in the last couple of years has taken on a new lease of life.
 [6 images] More


Big Help Music Showcase

What a bumper night the second Big Help Music showcase at the Boat Inn Birdingbury Wharf turned out to be.
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MARILLION ‘NORTH AMERICAN TOUR WARM UP SHOW' AT LEAMINGTON ASSEMBLY (12th October 2016)

I am being spoiled next week at The Assembly with my two favourite bands both performing.
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UK GUNS N' ROSES - LEAMINGTON ASSEMBLY

I last enjoyed a night of Guns N' Roses style magic performed by these guys back at the Assembly in 2010 and the lads sure still have it.
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Musical memories fundraiser

As part of Age UK Warwickshire a second monthly 'Dementia Cafe' is being launched at The Saxon Mill.
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Hello Goodbye

Arms open wide giving warm welcome to full house, Ben acknowledges host Victoria Mier and how The Tree House and similar venues are such a mutually ...
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Luke Jackson @ The Hinckley Act

Blurred lines as Hot Music Live venture across county line into Leicestershire visiting the acclaimed folk and roots venue Hinckley Act.
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We chat to Returned To The Earth

We caught up this week with Robin Peachey, front man and main songwriter for Nuneaton alternative indie-rockers Returned To The Earth.
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MOSTLY AUTUMN - LEAMINGTON ASSEMBLY 9TH OCTOBER PREVIEW AND LOOK BACK AT THIER LOCAL (LEAMINGTON SPA

Not many artists mean as much to me as York based rock band Mostly Autumn who make a very welcome return to Leamington for their biggest show of the ...
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Carrick at the Leamington Beer and Music festival

An excellent folk-pop workout from the lively and charming Carrick who persuaded a hall packed with real-ale fans to sing along with 'I would ...
 [8 images] More


Afterglow - Returned to the Earth

A warm and resonant anthem from Nuneaton alternative rock trio Returned to the Earth.
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We chat to Scott Ferry about the Leamington Beer and Music Festival

The Leamington Beer and Music Festival has become one of the landmark events in the local musical year.
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"Articles in Sound" film now online

Many of you will already have sampled parts of the great new "Articles in Sound" history of Coventry & Warwickshire music project, which was created ...
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The Musical Memories Cafe

This is pretty much the perfect gig.
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Small Doses playing at Stratford Arthouse

Small Doses are a stratford based rock covers band who have played numerous gigs in the Area after forming out of the most successful open mic in the ...
 [11 images] More


M.C Devvo plus support at Zephyr

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PLOUGH BEER FESTIVAL 2016 MUSIC

Saturday at this years beer festival at the Plough and Harrow in Whitnash had on offer along with the usual well chosen selection of real ales and ...
 [5 images] More


The Jolly Rogers at GristFest 2

From Lizzy to Queen, dual-guitar fuelled rock mayhem.
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GRISTFEST 2 The Grist Mill, Leamington Spa (19th-21st August)

For the second time this year The Grist Mill in Leamington Spa played host to a weekend-long live music charity event and despite the weather meaning ...
 [12 images] More


M.C Devvo plus support @ Zephyr

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M.C Devvo plus support

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Deja Vu at the Somerville

A deliciously authentic selection from the Real Book by Deja Vu with a generous serving of Swing and a complementary side of spicy Bossa.
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LAURENCE JONES, 4TH ALBUM LAUNCH SHOW -THE TOWNSEND HALL, SHIPSTON ON STOUR

Laurence was on fire for this homecoming show in his beloved Shipston On Stour which was also the official launch gig for his 4th album Take Me High, ...
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August at the Tump Folk Club

Here's some info from Karen Orgill about what she has lined-up at the Tump Folk Club .
 [7 images] More


Gristfest 2 !

If you missed the amazing Gristfest back in April never fear, drummer and festival promoter Peter Drew and The Grist Mill Landlord Clive Brooks have ...
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Embryonix at Moreton Morrell Party in the Park

An exemplary survey of rock through the ages from Embryonix and guest harp man John Richards for the late night slot at Moreton Morrell's Party ...
 [9 images] More


"Articles in Sound" Launch

Saturday 30th July 2016 witnessed the long awaited "Articles in Sound" project launch at Coventry Music Museum.
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Andi Wolf at Moreton Morrell

Here's the very stylish Andi Wolf sharing some classy jazz at a lovely free Party in the Park at Moreton Morrell.
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Behind the Settee at Think Pink 2016

It's always a treat to catch up with these lovely people.
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Courthouse at Think Pink

How much energy can three guys create on one stage? A superb afternoon set of vibrant urban pop rock from Courthouse on the Think Pink stage.
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Smith Street Party, 2016

The end of July in Warwick means only one thing, The Folk Festival, right? Wrong! The Smith Street Traders have been putting on The Smith Street ...
 [12 images] More


MY VISIT TO THE WARWICK FOLK FESTIVAL 2016

The Warwick Folk Festival has come around again and I paid a couple of visits this year to take in some of the folk sounds.
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WARWICK BEER FESTIVAL 2016 MUSIC

Along with a few halfs of great cider and ale enjoyed some of the music on offer at this years festival which was once again organised by the ...
 [7 images] More


NAPTON FESTIVAL 2016 - AN OVERVIEW

My favourite local festival came around again this year with as usual it's set of top draw performers both local and from further afield and ...
 [12 images] More


"Articles in Sound" Launch

For the last year, Pete Chambers, foremost local music historian & creator of the Coventry Music Museum, has been leading a team creating a Heritage ...
 [1 image] More


South Warwickshire Jazz Festival

The South Warwickshire Jazz Festival on Sunday 3rd July was a real treat.
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Laurence Jones Album Launch Show

For the launch of his new album ‘Take Me High' local blues sensation Laurence is going back to his roots on Friday 5th August and playing ...
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NAPTON FESTIVAL 2016 PREVIEW

Not long to wait now for one of my favourite local musical events The Napton Festival, this year the two day festival takes place on Friday 8th and ...
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Delish Acoustic Night No.2

11A Bank Street Rugby CV21 2QE Next event already announced at boutique Kitchen & Bar, Delish which opens it's door's bi-monthly for a ...
 [10 images] More


LEAMINGTON PEACE FESTIVAL 2016

As this event was the start of my attempt at live music photography back in 2008 I made my usual (if short) visit to the Pump Room Gardens in ...
 [6 images] More


Son of Town Hall

Three top acts at a top venue, The Tin Music and Arts, made it easy to justify going out on a work night.
 [9 images] More


Satsangi at the Zephyr Lounge

I've been trying to get to a Satsangi gig for some time now, but it seems that every time they have a gig so does my band! Initially this ...
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A CRACKING NIGHT AT STEVE WALWYN'S 60TH BIRTHDAY GIG

A fabulous night for our wonderful local musician and all round great guy Steve Walwyn with a packed room of friends, family and fellow ex and ...
 [3 images] More


Sheila Waterfield at Kenilworth Jazz Club

Even with a cold Shiela Waterfield was on great form at Kenilworth Jazz Club on June 6th for the last session before the summer break.
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Mustard & Blood

Coventry Music Collective, the Mustard and Blood Band present:Three Unique Nights of Themed MusicBring Out The Gimp – music from the films of ...
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WARWICK FOOD FESTIVAL 2016

As I did last year made a visit to this years Warwick Food Festival for a look around and of course to check out some of the music on offer.
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WHITSTOCK 2016

Here are a selection of my images from some of the bands performing on the Saturday of the Whitstock event which took place at the Plough and Harrow ...
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LAURENCE JONES, THE BLACK CIRCLES, LEVI WASHINGTON LEAMINGTON ASSEMBLY

Another very welcome show on home ground by our very own blues sensation Laurence Jones an artist who still unbelievably seems get better and more ...
 [7 images] More


LOCAL BLUES WONDER IN HOMECOMING GIG

Local blues maestro Laurence Jones (pictured above at the Napton Festival 2014) plays the Leamington Assembly on Friday 8th April with support by ...
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Rugby Bike Festival 2016

A few more pictures of the festival of bands including:Dead FrequencyGo Primitive Bad Touch.
 [12 images] More


Rugby Bike Festival 2016

A selection of photos from this years' Rugby Bike Festival (Main Stage) featuring local bands including:Hanzo Fall From GloryMornings star.
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Open Mic at the Dun Cow in Dunchurch, Rugby.

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Rugby Bike Festival 2016 Rugby Town Centre

Roar of engines and smell of smoke as 1000+ bikers glide into Rugby town centre for the third annual family friendly Rugby Bike Festival.
 [12 images] More


The Shapes return for 39th anniversary

It has been quite a few weeks for legendary Leamington band The Shapes.
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We chat to Sigourney Gowlett, Simon Button and Peter Drew about Whitstock 2016

So I'm sitting in the excellent Plough and Harrow and I'm talking to the owner, Sigourney Gowlett, together with super-promoter - and ...
 [1 image] More


Rena and the Renegades at GristFest 2016

For me, one of the stand-out performances of GristFest 2016 for it's sheer old-school rock and roll exuberance.
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GRISTFEST 2016

I made visits to this years Gristfest at The Grist Mill on Sydenham on all 3 days of this years event spread over the bank holiday weekend 30th April ...
 [10 images] More


All About The Music Final

Thursday 28th April 2016, five bands gathered at The Zephyr Lounge to take part in a competition event for a winner-takes-all prize opportunity to ...
 [12 images] More


Sharp Dressed Men

Well groomed and matching wall of sound Rob (keys & vocals), Alex (lead), Chris (acoustic) and Adam (cajon & percussion) collectively 4 parts of ...
 [6 images] More


OPEN MIC - DRAPERS BAR AND GRILL - 24th APRIL 2016, HOSTED BY KRISTY GALLACHER

My first impressions on entering the venue ‘Drapers Bar and Grill' in Coventry city centre were promising, a very high ceiling, two floors for ...
 [7 images] More


We catch up with Holly Hewitt

HML: Can you tell us about what you're up to on behalf of the Alzheimers Society? Why is this cause important to you and how can people ...
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All About The Music

Thursday, 28th April, is the final of All About the Music 2016.
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Such talent!

There have been some great EP/Album launches recently by our local talent - make sure you get your copies - keep music live and support the local ...
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Shanade EP launch at the Zephyr

Powerful, punchy songs delivered with passion and style.
 [7 images] More


Coventry Empire 09.04.16

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Coventry Empire 9th April 2016

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Coventry Empire 09.04.16

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Coventry Empire 09.04.16

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Announcing the Hot Music Live local festivals guide for 2016

What could be nicer than sitting in the sun with a pint of the good stuff and some of the area's finest on stage? So, here's something new, ...
 [1 image] More


Kilsby Open Music Collective April Fool's Night

With pre-emptive of no joke, no song curator George Houquez opens proceedings to close knit gathering of musicians at the friendly George.
 [12 images] More


Ben Clempson at the Zephyr

Top stuff from Ben Clempson at the Zephyr.
 [5 images] More


Martin Martel at the Zephyr

Supporting Shanade Morrow at the Zephyr Lounge.
 [4 images] More


Richard Baker Quintet at Stratford Jazz

 [10 images] More


Richard Baker at Stratford Jazz

A top session of elegant grooves, melodic solos and cool tunes gathered from much further afield than the Real Book.
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ROBINSON-STONE - REPORT ON THE LAUNCH GIG FOR THIER SECOND ALBUM, CATCH THEM AT THE NAPTON FESTIVAL

Possibly just outside of this web site gig review permit but as this band are previous inhabitants of Warwick and as they are set to perform for the ...
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We catch Jabba Cartel at the Wild Boar

Psychologist Eleanor Rosch reckons we don't really understand categories.
 [1 image] More


Jabba Cartel at the Wild Boar (Night of the musicians)

 [7 images] More


Noise

We've heard some worrying stories about local venues having to close because nearby properties have switched to residential use and then ...
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Godiva calling

If you fancy playing the Godiva festival this year, you can take part in a competition to help the organisers pick some signed and unsigned local ...
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Live Music and Burlesque evening

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Chez Titine's Burlesque Birthday Ball

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Chez Titine's Burlesque Birthday Ball

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Live Music and Burlesque evening

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Amy Kakoura and Andrew Craig Sharpe at the Wild Boar

Appearing at Matt Hernandez's fine Night of the Musicians for an excellent set of traditional songs delivered with elegant vocals and a laconic ...
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Matt Hernandez at the Wild Boar

Matt Hernandez, a lovely guy with a fine line in Flamenco, banter and nappy-changing.
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Skativa

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Skativa

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Time after time

We enjoyed this subtle, folk-tinged live take on the Cyndi Lauper classic from Leamington's own Jackie James.
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Joe Strummer foundation fundraising event

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Joe Strummer foundation fundraising event

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Joe Strummer foundation fundraising event

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Joe Strummer foundation fundraising event

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Joe Strummer foundation fundraising event

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Shape Presents DJ Randall, LJ High and Buzzy

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On Bass, Sir Horace Gentleman

{Thanks to Andy Holdcroft for this review}The new temporary (until December 2016) exhibition at Coventry Music Museum is called "On Bass, Sir Horace ...
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Line up for GristFest 2016 announced

SATURDAY 30-04-2016The Intruders.
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The Empire at the Zephyr

You walk into the Zephyr and you take in the black paint, the vivid wallpapering of iconic rock posters, and the casual demarcation of stage and pit.
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WHOLE LOTTA LED, ZEPHYR LOUNGE, LEAMINGTON SPA

A few more of my images from this fantastic show by Whole Lotta Led.
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WHOLE LOTTA LED, ZEPHYR LOUNGE, LEAMINGTON SPA

A late in the day change from the spacious Assembly to it's smaller sister the Zephyr Lounge did nothing to hinder this full blooded tribute to ...
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Zephyr Lounge

Pictures by Russell Whitehead Photography.
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Matt Hernandez's Night Of The Musicians

I recall, 6-7 years ago, when my band used to rehearse in the Park Tavern's skittle alley.
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This year it's going to be massive

In 2014, Peter Drew got 5 local acts together to raise money for Myton Hospice.
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Drums to spare?

Can anyone donate a drum kit to support youth music workshops in Nuneaton? If you can help, please contact Kirsty Lowrie (info [at] aspireinarts.
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Sam Powell Blues Band at the Oak

So there's at least a foot of breathing room between the closest jiving couple and the band.
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Godiva festival 2016 announced

Expect major festival shenanigans on the 1st to 3rd of July in Coventry's War memorial park.
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Beano's pick of the week - Indigo rain from the Empire

If we were a cool Silicon Valley start up, we'd tell you what was playing on the sunny penthouse jukebox as we sipped tequila while shuffling ...
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Hot Music Live chats to Ian Bourne

So I’m settled into a corner of the Town House with Ian Bourne who hosts not only the excellent Acoustic Tuesday at the Roadhouse but also a bunch ...
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Matt Bate gets new wheels

Yes, he's got a fast car, not to mention a fine voice.
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Gristfest 2016

Here's a heads up for Leamington's GristFest, three days of local live music taking place at the Grist Mill over the May Bank holiday to ...
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Battle of the bands

University challenge is all very well for a cerebral night in but for something a bit livelier, check out this year's battle of the bands run by ...
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Red handed behind the settee

We really like this relaxed whimsical demo from acoustic trio Behind the Settee.
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New home for Kristy Gallagher presents

Kristy's been running a popular open mic for some time at the Open Arms in Coventry.
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Tin Open Mic looking for spotlight acts

The Tin have just announced the new year's open mic season on Sunday nights at 8PM.
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New monthly music at the Cross Keys, Alcester

Local blues master Jack Blackman will be hosting a new monthly music night at the Cross Keys Ancestor.
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Electric Spivs

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Satsangi

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LaserBun

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The Pips @ the Zephyr

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Blackwater Ridge at the Zepryr

An energetic trio covering 70's rock classics, a sure winner to go and see.
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Larks in the wood

On a dark, dark day, in a dark, dark wood is a tiny shelter.
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Live and loud bookings web service reviewed

This is something a little different, a web service that acts as a matchmaker between acts and venues.
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Laurence Wood Trio at The Zephyr

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Arthur and the Invincibles

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The Empire at the Zephyr

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Deja Vu at the Somerville

So how come you get a slice of lime wedged in your bottle of Sol? The landlord at the Somerville knows why; in a hot climate the acid keeps the flies ...
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Thomas Wilson's photographic back catalog!

Check out this fine collection of photographs of the Leamington scene from 2013 to earlier this year.
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Show some TLC for the Tree House bookshop venue

The lovely people at Kenilworth's Tree House bookshop do some great stuff for the local music scene, running fabulous sessions and open mics, ...
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There's a new EP from Dark Houdini

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We check out Tuesday at the Town House

So here's some advice from the boys and girls at Hot Music Live.
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Timeless swing their thing

We're nothing if not adventurous, sneaking out to exotic Alvechurch to check out the elegant instrumental jazz of Timeless.
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Martin Carthy and Dave Swarbrick

"Don't distract him by clapping," says Swarb, "He's got to play across the beat, behind the beat and all over the place'".
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Thom Kikpatrick at the Leamington food and drink festival

So Thom's looking pretty cool perched on the Pump Rooms bandstand wrapped in a nest of keys, drums, guitars and loopers, yes a serious squad of ...
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Matt Bate at the Leamington Food and Drink festival

Matt was definitely the sharpest dressed man on the bandstand at this year's food and drink festival in Leamington.
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Blues Extra at the Joseph Arch

A fabulous night of blues rock from Zeppelin to Green via Lizzy.
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SugarDaddies at Art in the Park

A cracking set of authentic blues on a sunny afternoon in Leamington's lovely Jephson gardens.
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Shanade at Art in the Park 2015

Shanade Morrow stood in at short notice with a fine acoustic session.
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Behind the Settee at Think Pink 2015

We love these guys, quirky, stylish and authentic.
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Becki and the Dove at Think Pink 2015

A lively set on a sunny afternoon with some elegant vocals and fiery guitar work.
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Zea 2013

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The Swing Cats 2013

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Wes Finch 2014

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Vieux - Ansoumana Bakayoko 2013

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Those Amongst Us Are Wolves 2013

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The Swing Cats 2013

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The Swaps 2013

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The Swaps 2014

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The Selecter 2014

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The Rushmore 2014

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The Orb 2014

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The Electric Spivs 2013

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The Beautons 2013

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The Beat 2014

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Supine Orchestra 2014

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Suzy Indygo 2014

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Supine Orchestra 2014

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Stylus Boy 2014

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Strictly Business 2014

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Stone Foundation

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Space Siren 2013

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Soft Metals 2014

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Shanade 2013

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Shanade 2014

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Second Episode 2013

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Second Episode 2014

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Satsangi 2014

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Satsangi 2013

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Sam Brookes and Pete Roe 2014

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Sam Brookes 2014

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Robin Plays Chords 2013

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Pretty Selective 2014

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Pete Roe

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Not Right

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Noe and the Pastel Frontier

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Chris Lynch

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Nizlopi 2013

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Mixtape Saints 2013

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Matty Coles Band 2013

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Marshmallow Palace 2013

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Majority Rules 2013

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Lucy Leave May 2015

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Lucy Anne Sale

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Lucy Anne Sale January 2014

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Lucy Leave May 2015

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Lucy Anne Sale

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Lucy Anne Sale January 2014

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Lost in the wreckage May 2014

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Lost in the wreckage June 2013

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Liz Lawrence 2013

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Liz and Lizzy July 2013

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Zed Lepp September 2013

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LaserBun February 2014

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Joe Worrall July 2014

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Joe Dolman July 2014

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Jackdaw With Crowbar December 2013

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Jackdaw With Crowbar December 2013

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Jabba Cartel July 2013

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Jabba Cartel January 2014

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Jaap Blonk April 2013

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Jaap Blonk April 2013

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J Dubulu May 2014

Legacy photography by Thomas Wilson.
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J Dubulu

Legacy photography by Thomas Wilson.
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Interplay May 2013

Legacy photography by Thomas Wilson.
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Hassin I Saab May 2015

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Handsome Devils Club April 2013

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Hassin I Saab May 2015

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Handsome Devils Club April 2013

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General Theory of Dub June 2013

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General Theory of Dub April 2013

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Father Murphy May 2015

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Elly Parsons July 2013

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Electric Spivs March 2014

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Electrik Custard April 2014

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Electrik Custard May 2014

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Eagle Circles

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Dr Trippy

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Dr Teeth

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Dom Morgan

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Dirty Fair

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Devon Sproule

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Damn Good Thieves

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Chris Tye

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Boundary

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Bunsen Honey

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Boundary

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Boat to Row

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Batsch

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Banco De Gia

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Wes Finch and the Dirty Band 2014

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The Rosenberg Appeal 2013

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Jackdaw With Crowbar June 2014

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Jackdaw With Crowbar June 2014

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