Photo: William Fuller
I don’t understand music fans that turn up just for a gig’s headliner. You never know what support-act riches you’re going to stumble upon, and Saturday’s line-up was a goldmine.
Farnham four-piece The Venus Lyx kicked off proceedings. Churning out some standard, yet pleasing, guitar-heavy tracks to start with, it was when the vocals started to get bluesy that their set got interesting. By getting raw and rocking some fun guitar licks, the guys took it up by several notches before their time was up.
Ever heard of London outfit LSA? No? Me neither before Saturday. Causing a stir as the unnanounced second support act, the revelation that it was their live debut was clearly met with surprise. As far as first gigs go, this was a blinder. The band were tight and held a truly engaging rapport with the crowd. If there were any jitters on stage, they weren’t visible throughout the impressive set. Seemingly flawless both instrumentally and vocally, this new discovery was the highlight of the entire evening. Unfortunately I can’t find them online, but definitely keep an ear out for these guys as I sense great things to come.
Venue regulars New Desert Blues never fail to disappoint. Looking dapper, as ever, and brimming with unassuming confidence, the guys’ soothing americana vibes went down a treat. Their growing popularity across the Southern music scene was evident as revelling punters sang and chanted along, especially to firm favourite ‘Daniel’. If their recent show supporting folk-pop darlings Slow Club and live session for BBC Introducing is anything to go by, the future’s bright for New Desert Blues, and Saturday’s gig was just another step on their road to success.
Posted by tashapert on April 28, 2013
Not long ago the rumours of a new Sufjan Stevens album buzzed across my social media feeds like a drunk wasp on a waltzer. So when the video for ‘Mr Frosty Man’ was unleashed onto the internet, before the eyes of expectant indie enthusiasts and Christmas fans alike, I was delighted to see for myself these hopeful whispers bear fruition.
Normally I’m hesitant to discuss anything relating to the Yuletide period outside of December, but in this case, what with Halloween having descended upon us last week, this visual masterpiece is quite an apt way to wave off the spookiest day of the autumn season and ring in the winter months.
Reminiscent of a more gruesome Nightmare Before Christmas, the video might not win any marathons (lasting just 2:01 minutes, a brief sneeze of time) but it certainly packs an undead punch . Without spoiling the climax for anyone, ‘Mr Frosty Man’ tells the tale of a snowman who comes to life in an attempt so save his creator from a nuclear zombie attack. The usual, you’re probably thinking? Well no, of course not, but let’s remember that Stevens can be fairly unpredictable and according to director/master of claymation Lee Hardcastle, his creations ‘are not for children’.
As a fan of the vast majority of Stevens’ back catalogue, I believe I won’t be alone in saying that ‘Mr Frosty Man’ is hardly a mind-blowing addition to his oeuvre. However, it’s still a welcome return to the forefront from the Detroit-born multi-instrumentalist. If this video is anything to go by, a lot more adventure is hopefully in store on this upcoming release, which ties into what is more traditionally a time of peace. I welcome any seasonal shake up Stevens has to offer.
Silver & Gold: Songs for Christmas, Vols. 6-10 is a five-EP box set of Christmas-related songs and carols recorded by Stevens between 2006 and 2012. It serves as a follow up to Songs for Christmas, released six years ago and will be available on November 13th.
Posted by tashapert on November 6, 2012