Smashin’ it up!

So I was at a Nirvana tribute band the other week, and it was rather good, actually. The band were charismatic, the crowd was lively, and the mosh pit followed etiquette nicely (Always help up the fallen). All in all, a nice gig. At the end, the lead let us know he knew it was a good ‘un by taking his guitar and thwacking it off various parts of the stage. We cheered. We clapped. We left happy. Nice one.

Nirvana tribute

Novana at the o2 Acadamy 3

I got home and started thinking. I haven’t managed to see many bands lately smashing up their instruments or going totally wild on stage. In the past I’ve been to some great gigs, though. I’ve danced on stage with some bands and sang my heart out until my voice disappeared with others… ahh, yes, I have had some good times. But I’m curious. I want to know about you. I want to know about the messiest, most fun gigs you’ve been to. I’d like to hear off you if you have fond memories of your favourite band or a band you’d never heard of giving you a top night. I’d like tales of stuff-smashing. I’d like pictures of drink-dropping. The best gig you’ve been to. Give us a tale in the comments or tweet us your pics here!

mosh pit

Looking forward to hearing from you!

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New Podcast: The Sound Lab

So we’ve got something different for you here at MOSH… As of this week we have teamed up with The Sound Lab to bring you a weekly podcast, covering the hottest acts in the UK!

 

With music from bands such as Iodine Sky, Spring King and featuring an interview with Young Guns, this is one podcast to check out!

Podcast Bands

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An Introduction to: Stone Broken!

So this next band are something interesting indeed. Having not long ago commenced the beginning of a mammoth tour, and having just recently been nominated ‘Best New Band’ at the Planet Rock Awards 2016, Stone Broken are already making bold imprints. Take a listen to their music, and you’ll see why.

Stone Broken

 

Stone Broken are a four piece from Walsall, describing themselves as hard rock, which is pretty bang on. With Rich Moss on lead vocals and guitar, Keiron Conroy on bass and vocals, Chris Davis on guitar and vocals, and Robyn Haycock on drums and vocals, it’s no wonder they’ve caught some pretty serious attention. They manage to combine a tight sound with a punchy attitude which displays a good band chemistry, and packs a hell of a punch along the way. Stone Broken have a ten track debut album recorded, ‘All in Time’, which is available, along with various band merchandise, from the site’s store. Plus, if you sign up to the band’s mailing list, you can enjoy a free download of ‘Not Your Enemy’, the second single from their album.

Stone Broken Tour

With their tour underway, going as far as the Wildfire Festival , Scotland and as near as The Slade Rooms, Wolverhampton, and with new single ‘BETTER’ out on the 16th May, there are plenty of chances and very good reason for you to catch a gig by these guys. You can keep up to date with what they’re up to on Facebook, as well. Stone Broken seem to be doing it all right, and they are one busy band. So go and have a look at what the fuss is all about!

 

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An Introduction to: Cower, Hounds!

 

Busy? It doesn’t matter. Stop what you’re doing, grab yourself a set of earphones and a bevvy and spare a few minutes for Cower, Hounds! You’ll be doing yourself a favour. Up next on the ever-growing list of bands to look out for in the Midlands, these guys have kept the bar comfortably raised, and once you’ve heard them, you’ll understand why.

Cower Hounds Logo

 

With their new single A.I.M still fresh in the bag and available to buy on iTunes, and a few more solid titles, which can be heard on their album …Or Die, behind them, three piece band Cower, Hounds! are ones to look out for.They are a sort of mix between alternative rock and the raw side of grunge, yet it’s hard to put a definitive label on them. The energy is doubtless, mind, and the music is fresh and interesting.  We have Andy (Fordy) Ford on Bass, Paul (Messy) Reynolds on Vocals and Guitar, and Rob (Robot) Stimpson on Drums, and if you like what you hear below, you can check out their YouTube channel here. Cower, Hounds have played live shows around the Midlands including the Giffard Arms, Wharf Bar and the Tap & Tanner, boast a hefty following around Walsall, and have much more in store for you!

 

Cower Hounds 1

Paul Reynolds, Andy Ford and Rob Stimpson.

You keep track of what Cower, Hounds! are up to via their Facebook page, and I’d highly suggest keeping an eye on when they’re next gigging, as they put on a great live show. They don’t take themselves too seriously, and keep the audience entertained throughout. So listen, enjoy, and then get down the pub and check them out!

 

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An Introduction To: MeMe Detroit!

So there’s a bit of a buzz surrounding this next artist, and it’s getting louder and louder. If you like your PJ Harvey and your Smashing Pumpkins and don’t mind casting your mind back to the 90’s for the afternoon, MeMe Detroit is the one.

meme detroit

With her debut album ”Live to love you’ll Love to live’ (try saying that quickly when you’re drunk) out now boasting positive reviews around the board, MeMe Detroit is are definitely on a roll. Songs such as the punchy, high tempo ‘Stand up you’re living’ and the rather grungy ‘A point of you’ stand out as tight, well constructed titles which are sure to set her apart from the crowd. The album is available from the website, where you can listen to more songs, and also from iTunes. MeMe Detroit has played around the country, from London to Birmingham. The next gig being the Actress & Bishop, and in preparation for her next video, has invited gig goers who can get to Brum on the 17th April to join in.

 

So with live gigs lined up, a debut album out and a host of music videos available for viewers to watch, MeMe Detroit seems be doing it right. You can keep up to speed on news from the artist on Facebook.

 

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An Introduction to: Guts for Glory!

I’d like you to meet a band that mean business. A band that, over the past couple of years have gone from strength to strength. I’ve seen these guys live and they know how to get the crowd going. Mind, they’re not for the faint hearted…

guts for glory

 

Hailing from Wolverhampton and formed in the Summer of 2014, Guts for Glory are on the up and up, with a mean line up and even meaner songs. Frontman Rich Austin takes the centre stage,and then there’s lead guitarist James Gould, rhythm guitarist Wayne Mann, Alex Harvey on bass and last but not least, drummer Dan McNally. They have quite the following, keeping their fans up to date on their Facebook page, and have played shows all around the Midlands. Playing small to large, from the Giffard Arms in Wolverhampton, to the 02 Academy3 in Birmingham, Guts for Glory know their roots, and how to build up a rappor with the audience, sharing jokes and interacting well. They still have a bunch of gigs lined up, and you can keep up with where and when they are playing here.

If you like what you hear from their YouTube channel, then you might want to get in on buying their album, Fairy Tales. Released on the 23rd January of this year, and featuring songs such as ‘Play with the Devil’ and ‘Eye for an Eye’ Fairy Tales is available in both hard copy and as a digital download, you can get the 11 track album from their website for as little as £4.

guts for glory album art

 

So if you like your music heavy and you’re wanting something new to listen to, go check out Guts for Glory. Try to catch them live if you can. You won’t be disappointed.

 

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Things I learnt as a Rock Club DJ: Part 3

bannerSo I did a gig in the Summer of Fleetwood Mac (That is, my 2015) for the first time in yonks, in Walsall. I thoroughly enjoyed it. It’s weird to think that I thought of it so as something so novel, so exciting… and when I cast my mind back to a time when it was something I did week in, week out for years, I remember that I used to feel that way at the beginning. Over time, especially throwing the day job and other commitments into the mix, the eager gettin’ ready to do the biz sometimes turned into ‘Ughhh I’m tired’ and the eventual realization that even the super cool jobs can turn into a chore sometimes, if you aren’t in the right mindset. When my games blogging came along, I knew I had to choose or burn out, and I took a break from regular DJing for a while. Not being in the thick of it gave me some perspective, and allowed me to realize some things:

It can be a lot of pressure in the booth.

kiss kiss

Kinda…

 

As I pointed out previously, you are catering for their night out. People choose clubs based on the atmosphere, and that in turn has to match what they are selling on the box. Music is the main part of that. You not only have to play music from the genres that they are advertising but you have to play what the crowd deems as good music. And sometimes that doesn’t match what you deem as good music. You may hear a new song on the radio and think ‘Wow! I love it! Everyone else will love it!’ only to receive the complete opposite reaction. People will tell you if they don’t like what you’re playing. You will get repeat requests, you will get asked to play something by the band that is currently playing, and you will get asked to play something that makes no sense because the person asking for it got the band name all muddled up. It happens. I once, loudly to a friend, mistook an Alice Cooper song for a Bon Jovi song and kicked myself for weeks about it because of how embarrassed I was because y’know, it’s very uncool to do that or something.

A good tip, if you aren’t the first DJ on, is to walk around, introduce yourself to maybe a group of people or two, and ask them if there’s anything they want to hear before you go on. This will help you later on, because the more approachable you are, the more likely others will come up to you when you are at work. Taking requests is always a good thing; however, I have learnt that you should always tell somebody if you haven’t got the song that they want. With technology advancing the way that it is, though, this is not as much of a problem as it used to be. If there’s no way to play the request, though, jot it down and ask them to try the next DJ, or that you’ll have it next time. Sometimes they’ll accept, and sometimes they won’t be happy. The point is, during your set, you have to line up songs, find your music, make sure everything mixes together nicely, and on top of it deal with requests and people that want to come jump behind the booth/get you to take their photo/have a nice long friendly albeit random chat because what better time… This is how it should be, though. Certainly preferable to nobody wanting to approach you. They’re merry. They’re having fun. You did your job right.

Make sure your equipment works.

pretty

‘Dude! I broke something! Let’s hope the pretty lights distract them for long enough! …oh and pass the beer, will ya?’

Some of this may be out of your hands. You may have to do the best with what you have. Still, it always pays off to do sound checks before the club opens. It is always best to check your most played CDs as often as you can, certainly before a gig if you haven’t done one for a while. The unforgettable jeer that the crowd makes when you scramble to play another song while that song is stuck on a loop at 01.43 can be quite unnerving. I always used to have an emergency track to hand. One I knew always worked, one I checked more often than the others. I knew where it was at all times and if the worst happened and there was nothing lined up (pop punk songs are very quick and sometimes I got distracted with requests and the occasional drunken drink order), on it went.

Being aware of your surroundings is another thing. Some of the booths I’ve been in were tiny, and most are quite dark. It’d be no good to accidentally switch everything off in the middle of a set (See aforementioned jeer – only prolonged with possible chants), and usually there are plenty of mystery wires of which the only purpose seems to be to trip you up. You also need to be sure of the sound levels. What sounds good to you in the booth may not be the case in other parts of the room. You sort of get an ear for it when you are in your regular haven, even though it is always best to walk around and listen out, especially if the equipment you are using has seen better days.

Djay

Ah. The ‘On’ switch. Didn’t think to look there.

The main thing is at the end of it all, though. to enjoy yourself. It seems so very predictable for me to end the article with that, but seriously… most nights, even the nights where I was tired and grumpy prior to getting there, were a lot of fun overall. By the end of my sets, my mood lifted. I have gained some fantastic memories over the years. My music taste was broadened significantly too, and I made a lot of friends. If you have a passion for music, it’s a good avenue to go down. I’m glad that I got to do it.

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