Up & Coming Bands who perform in London – All images © Chris Dorney.

Posts tagged “keyboard

50 – ‘Hot Panda’, ‘Rotifer’ and ‘Auction For The Promise Club’

Hot Panda:

www.hotpanda.ca

“Hot Panda are just two boys and two girls from Edmonton trying to do the same thing they’ve always tried to do: play some kind of rock and roll that’ll make people dance and feel happy…Simple stuff!

These kids -Maghan Campbell (drums), Chris Connelly (vocals, guitar), Catherine Hiltz (bass), and Heath Parsons (keys, accordion) – have toured so much in the past few years that their shabby van, $30 motel rooms, and stranger’s floors feel more like home these days than their own beds. Since the release of their first EP (2008’s Whale Headed Girl) and their subsequent signing to Vancouver’s Mint Records, the band has zigged and zagged their raucous live show across North America (ok, minus Mexico, but still…) and Europe on planes, trains, and automobiles until they thought they might die!

They’ve snapped pictures of themselves under the Eiffel Tower, played on a stage once graced by the Beatles in Hamburg, and visited royal palaces in Vienna, all when they went on tour opening for the Von Bondies across Europe in April, 2009! They’ve also had wonderful times playing at festivals like SXSW in Austin, Texas, CMJ Music Marathon in New York, and North of the border at Pop Montreal, Halifax Pop Explosion, Sled Island in Calgary, and NXNE in Toronto. Along the way, they’ve played with lots of other bands they love, like Art Brut, The Raveonettes, Tokyo Police Club, Chad Van Gaalen, Electric 6, Crystal Antlers, and lots more. So, in short, it’s been some kind of adventure!

Yet, as great adventures often go, this one suffered some moments of ugly struggle. November 2009 marked the departure of one of their founding members, shortly before the band was supposed to record their sophomore release. However, despite this sad and unsettling blow, the band kept their heads held high long enough to snag Catherine Hiltz as their new bass player/multi-instrumentalist. Hiltz’s arrival, however, has majorly revitalized the band- it’s a long story, but in short, Hot Panda is having fun again, and they’re damn happy about it!

How Come I’m Dead? (Out on Mint Records October 12, 2010), a follow up to 2009’s acclaimed Volcano…Bloody Volcano!, was written with Hiltz and recorded at Vancouver’s JC/DC studios during the chaos of the 2010 Winter Olympics. It has a playful sense of humour to it, revealing the band’s sense of relief and the return of ridiculous good times since Hiltz’s arrival. Like Volcano, How Come I’m Dead draws inspiration from music’s most random corners- the album has moments of dreamy noise, circus freak dance, heartbreaking country ballads with screeching metal guitar solos, lovely harmonies, psychadelic drones, and straight up pop/rock numbers. There’s even a hip-hop track, which includes a bass scratch solo and enough f-bombs to earn them an adult content warning sticker- which tumbles directly into a grinding techno song!

Watch for Hot Panda in a town near you this fall- joyfully dispensing their new rock and roll tunes as they tour North America starting in September!”

(Quote obtained from the band’s official website)

Rotifer:

www.robertrotifer.co.uk

Auction For The Promise Club:

www.auctionforthepromiseclub.co.uk

“Recently listed in the Marie Claire UK Playlist alongside Florence and the Machine and I Blame Coco, 2011 is year proving to be a for the unsigned band,Auction for the Promise Club.

Introduced on BBC 6 Music by Tom Robinson and on XFM by John Kennedy as well as regional BBC Radio Show’s across the country, the female-fronted rock band have garnered critical acclaim for their unique sound, which channels shoegaze through giant hooks and huge choruses.

2010 saw Auction for the Promise Club support Paolo Nutini and Martha Wainright at the Eden Sessions and also Reverend and The Makers. The band has racked up performances at some of the country’s most renowned venues, including Liverpool’s Cavern Club, Birmingham’s Gatecrasher and the ICA in London, as well as headlining a closing show at London Fashion Week, Jalouse, Mayfair. ”

(Quote obtained from the band’s official website)


40 – ‘Fjokra’, ‘Houdini Dax’ and ‘Brave Yesterday’

Fjokra:

www.reverbnation.com/fjokra

“Earnest singer songwritery balladeering? NO!
Retro revivalists? NO!
‘Hip’, urban funkateers? NO!

‘Queen on crack’? Perhaps. Chuck in a liberal dose of Mike Patton/Mr Bungle, Todd Rundgren, Prince, Rachmaninoff interludes and metal riffs the size of skyscrapers and you’re halfway to describing the musical smorgasbord that makes up Fjokra’s music. Oh, and there’s some Latin grooves and some monstrous Dubstep chucked in as well. Five guys, two girls and a lot of facepaint.”

(Quote obtained from the band’s website)

Houdini Dax:

www.houdinidax.co.uk

“Summer 2011. And the nippers are still making good honest rock ’n’ roll. Take Cardiff’s Houdini Dax, who have an average age of 19. What are they doing digesting records, writing songs and rehearsing when they could be playing Xbox or texting friends from the back of the bus? Weren’t “the kids” supposed to have tired of analogous music? Wasn’t the house music craze of the late ’80s supposed to have killed rock? Heck, thinking about it, weren’t the synth bands of over 20 years ago viewed as the only way forward?

No my dear music lovers, valves are not dead, rock ’n’ roll is blossoming and “the kids are alright” (as Pete Townshend so neatly put it 46 years ago). The Noughties has seen great success for young bands.  The Libertines and then Arctic Monkeys paved the way post-Brit Pop and now still barely out of the shadows come Houdini Dax, your soon to be favourite new band.

Hearing ‘The Magicians’ for the first time it’s impossible not to think of Alex Turner and his band in their early stages. Jack Butler’s edgy vocals, sharp wordplay and the stop-start, spiky New Wave tendency of the playing certainly share similarities with early Arctic Monkeys, but it’s not what defines them.  A video of a live acoustic performance for Huw Stephens’ Swn Festival ‘Swn is Sound’ video series of ‘Struggling In The Sand’ show Houdini Dax playing in a stripped back setting with acoustic guitar, bass, brushed drums and harmonies to the fore. It’s tight, honed and timeless. Yes, they have major talent. They can sing splendidly, they throw in some deft bridges and could very well sound like one of those great old acts. Yet they don’t! And when quizzed about their favourite bands, ’60s touchstones (The Beatles, The Kinks, The Sonics, The Stooges) meet latter day acts (Blur and Supergrass) and new bands (The Black Keys, The Raconteurs and White Denim). Yet You Belong To Dax Darling sounds nothing like any of them. It’s the sound of teenagers discovering what they can do.

“Recording the album was amazing,” Jack reveals. “Having Rich from The Method [another of the See Monkey Do Monkey coterie] as producer was special. We’re friends, so he won’t shy away with his opinions. And he always got the best out of us.”  Mentioning how the production had elements of ’60s guitar heroics, post-punk rhythms and an element of My Bloody Valentine about it, Jack beamed back at me as if their mission statement had been achieved.”I’m glad you hear those things clashing,” he eagerly states “because we love that retro ’60s style, but it’s been done so much before. It’s important for us to mix older styles with newer ones… We were aiming for a really strong debut that doesn’t really let up in energy and excitement,” closes Jack. “We tried to capture this by recording in a really live way.”

And live and exciting is the order for the day for the teenage world view of Houdini Dax. Their second album may well feature strings, ballads and mellotrons but for now let the revolution begin as these youngsters play it their own way with what they have learnt from Hendrix, Syd, Gaz and co. They should be famous! ”

(Quote obtained from the band’s official website)

Brave Yesterday:

www.myspace.com/braveyesterdaymusic

“We are Brave Yesterday, a rock band from Jersey. Not the one immortalized in rock mythology by the Boss. The other Jersey, the one in the Channel. Knowing this, you could also be forgiven for thinking that we are nearly French. We’re not. We’re nearly Canadian-ish.

Our frontman Nutter’s authentic North American Rawk voice gives us our mid-Atlantic twang. Mention us in the same breath as Rival Schools, Jimmy Eat World and 30 Seconds To Mars. We’re cool with that.”

(Quote obtained from the band’s facebook page)


17 – ‘Tankus The Henge’, ‘Kitty Junkbrother’, and ‘Doyle & The Fourfathers’

Tankus The Henge:

www.tankusthehenge.com

“The world of Tankus the Henge is uplifting and wild, dark and heartfelt.
A five piece powerhouse of a band drawing visual and musical influences from old time Fairgrounds to modern day Circus; The Beatles to Tom Waits and Gogol Bordello to Radiohead, they embody a look and a sound that lies somewhere between their South East London home and the carnival town of New Orleans.

With their charismatic frontman, Jaz Delorean, looking like a lost character from a Terry Gilliam film and the pump and grind of the Tankus the Henge sound generating a groove that makes it impossible to stand still, their live show ebbs and flows like a small boat on a turbulent sea.

Any other band who billed themselves as “the most fantastic band in the world” would rightly quake in their boots at having to live up to such fanfare. Tankus the Henge defy you to contradict them!”

(quote obtained from the band’s official website)


Kitty Junkbrother:

www.myspace.com/kittyjunkbrother

“KittyJunkBrother was made in Camden. Hair is her own. She likes her cat Brian and days in which she is not under any obligation to do anything. Freedom to dine on the stars overhead and sing songs about lovers that fled; that is what a JunkBrother likes. To travel the world with a dime in your shoe, got no time for the system that seems to fuck you.”

(quote obtained from the artist’s myspace page)


Doyle & The Fourfathers:

www.dt4f.get-ctrl.com

“Doyle & The Fourfathers are a Southampton based band who formed in September 2009. The band consists of Lead singer and songwriter William Doyle, Guitarist and multi-instrumentalist Ben Clark, Bassist Michael Goozee and Drummer Alex Urch.

Inspired by all great and enduring artists of the last 60 years, the band’s sound is a refreshingly honest coalescence of nostalgia and innovation. Their music presents a diverse sonic palette, yet is always underpinned by assured and evocative songcraft.

The band’s most notable successes of 2010 include performing at the triumphant ‘Save 6 Music’ protest gig at the 229 Club in London and playing a live session for Marc Riley on his BBC 6 Music show, as well as gaining recognition from other DJs on the station. The band have also built up a modest yet passionate fanbase in a short space of time.

Having released their single ‘The Governor of Giving Up’ on October 4th 2010, Doyle & The Fourfathers have finished recording their first full-length album, “Man Made” the release of which will be supported by a UK tour in early 2011.”

(quote obtained from the band’s official website)

Check out ‘Doyle & The Fourfathers’ performing on BBC Radio earlier this year: