MusicNotts Talks With… Evil Scarecrow

An interview I did a while back with Nottingham/Derby band, Evil Scarecrow. Think K.I.S.S meets gruesome slasher with full-on screamo vocals you get these guys. And some strange dance-moves (just go to a gig you’ll get it)

MusicNotts Talks With… Evil Scarecrow

 

MusicNotts Talks With… Chai Larden

An interview I did with upcoming musical talent, Chai Larden, for MusicNotts magazine/site, and she’s even part of The Invisible Orchestra. Have a read and enjoy

http://musicnotts.com/musicnotts-talks-with-chai-larden/

 

 

MusicNotts Talks With… Tom Shawcroft

Another one from the MusicNotts column feature, Nottingham’s own Tom Shawcroft. His music’s really good and another great artist to keep a listen out for.  Enjoy  🙂

http://musicnotts.com/musicnotts-talks-with-tom-shawcroft/

 

Listen To This: Beans on Toast

 

An interview with veteran rocker, well I say that but he’s been active since 2005, Jay McAllister, and the next addition in the Listen To This series, also he’s playing at the Rescue Rooms tonight in Nottingham. Enjoy

BOT 2019 PORTRAIT

Meet Jay McAllister, a one-man-band music veteran who’s been making music since 2005, or since Indie music got a breath of new air. Better known by his stage-name Beans on Toast, Jay McAllister is a home-grown solo musician with a soothing voice who sings about many aspects of life such as drugs, politics and love. Beans on Toast is an extraordinary musician in his own right who sings to you in a way that only a small handful can. A beautiful mixture of folk, rock and acoustic with a bit of heartfelt soul. He has ten albums under his belt, his most recent being A Bird in the Hand and countless tours and look forward to hearing much more from him in the near future. For your further listening check out Another Year, Magic, Here at Homerton Hospital, Bamboo Toothbrush and Miss You Like Crazy and let’s see what you think.

“I wrote my first song was I was 15 and I’ve been writing them ever since”

Who are you?
For all intents and purposes, my name is Beans on Toast. I’m a folk singer from Essex currently travelling around the country singing simple songs about life and Love.

What made you want a life in music?
It made more sense to me than pretty much everything else, it’s just how it’s always been. I wrote my first song was I was 15 and I’ve been writing them ever since.

Now you’ve been making music since 2005, about 15 years now, do you feel like a music veteran?
I feel like I’ve been around the block a few times yeah. Still enjoy it as ever as ever though.

Do you feel you’re at the stage where you feel like a pro or would you view yourself as someone who’s still learning?
I’m not sure the plan was ever to be a pro and you should always continue to learn, that said I’m pretty settled in what I do these days and feel like I know what I’m doing.

When you first began as a musician what music influenced you?
I played in a grunge band a school, so Nirvana, Placebo and the like were a massive inspiration. Around the same time, I also discovered The Doors and Jim Morrison and fell in Live with his attitude and magic.

Describe Beans on Toast in five words
Drunk Folk Singer

On a scale of 1-10, how rock are you?
5

Beans on Toast, how did that go from being an edible dish to your stage-name?
I think it’s a pretty fair description of the music I make. It’s English, cheap, easy and it does what it says on the tin.

Describe a Beans on Toast gig to the MusicNotts readers
A gathering of friends with some singing, drinking, dancing, thinking and forgetting.

As a musician describe to me how life on the road is as you’ve been both around the UK and Europe. What can you tell me?
That good people are everywhere and if you’re polite the world will open its arms to you.

Where are you top 5 music venues both in Nottingham, the UK and abroad?
I’ve played many, many times in Nottingham and 90% of the shows have been in the same building, just different rooms. So my top Notts venues would be Rock City, Rock City Basement, Rescue Rooms and stealth. UK venues I like include Gorilla in Manchester. Brudenell Social Club in Leeds. The Trades in Hebden Bridge. Omeara in London and The Phoenix in Exeter. Worldwide. Amnesia in San Francisco. Rockwood music hall in NYC. De Roma in Antwerp. Die Wohngemeinschaft in Cologne. The Bank Rooftop in Cape town and Smiles Saloon in Bolinas.

What reactions do you get from your music compared to both here and abroad cos I imagine the musical tastes are a bit different.
I’m generally surprised how well it goes down outside of English
speaking countries, turns out it was my ignorance I was worried about.

Now you’ve got a gig later this week at the Rescue Rooms, what can we expect from it?
Same as above: A gathering of friends with some singing, drinking, dancing, thinking and forgetting.

And will you be performing songs from your recent release ‘A Bird in the Hand’?
Yep, and a bunch from the back catalogue too. This is my first tour with a new band, we’ve reworked a bunch of old tunes into a full band affair. Which is fun.

The last time you performed in town you played at Rock City, how did it go and are you excited to be coming back?
Yep, I Love Nottingham. Can’t wait to get a Mocky D’s before the show too.

Something that people might not know is that your last album was produced by Ben Lovett, would you be open to collaborating with him in the future, either as a musician or producer?
Ben produced my first album and I was lucky enough that he found the time in his mental schedule to produce my 10th. Maybe in ten years, he’ll do the 20th.

Has your music been played on The Beat or any other radio station yet?
I have no idea. 6music plays the odd song here and there as does Radio X.

Lastly where can fans listen to your music?
Wherever they normally listen to music. I’ll be there. Or Google Beans on Toast. It took me a while to get above the food on the search results. But I did it.

https://twitter.com/beanstoast?ref_src=twsrc%5Egoogle%7Ctwcamp%5Eserp%7Ctwgr%5Eauthor
https://www.facebook.com/beansontoastmusic/
http://www.beansontoastmusic.com

MusicNotts Talks With… The Five Hundred

An interview I did with Nottingham’s rock/metal 5-piece ahead of their gig this Wednesday on the 30th January 2019. If you’re a fan and going to the gig looking forward to seeing you there  🙂

http://musicnotts.com/musicnotts-talks-with-the-500/

 

MusicNotts Talks With… Drawn Image

These guys have only been around over a year and a bit but they sound that professional they sound like they’ve been around longer. Ladies, gents, other rock lovers, here’s Drawn Image

http://musicnotts.com/musicnotts-talks-with-drawn-image/

 

In The Spotlight: Hozier – Take Me To Church

The first in a mainstream debut for the Irish singer-songwriter and the song is just amazing to listen to and a powerhouse in its own right. Take Me to Church has a sombre tone straight from the start and all the way to the finish and has very dramatic tones that accompany it. For a soul song it’s both haunting and melodious. The video itself was shot in Cork, Ireland which stands in for Russia and was shot in grayscale monochrome.
The video tells the story of two men in a relationship who, despite being very happy together, try and keep their relationship a secret from the community. However, the community learns of the men’s sexuality and kidnap and torture him in a violent homophobic backlash. The other man learns of what has happened to his partner and rushes to try and get him but realises he is too late the he sees a violent homophobic mob drag him towards a big pyre.
Hozier openly admits that the lyrics for the song came about from his anger on the Catholic Church’s stance and attitudes towards LGBT+ Rights. Judging by the way many religious organisations treat the LGBT+ community it can easily be argued that he’s got a point.
Another aspect of the song that highlights the issues is the lyrics as they are quite poignant
“Every Sunday’s getting more bleak, a fresh poison each week, we were born sick, you heard them say it, my church offers no absolutes”
“Take me to church I’ll worship like a dog at the shrine of your lies, I’ll tell you my sins and you can sharpen your knife, offer me that deathless death Good God, let me give you my life”
In terms of the lyrics they give a direct reference on how religion is easily used to attack minority groups and how sermons are easily used to preach ignorance and lies.
https://twitter.com/Hozier?ref_src=twsrc%5Egoogle%7Ctwcamp%5Eserp%7Ctwgr%5Eauthor

In The Spotlight: Imagine Dragons – Natural

Imagines

For this edition for In The Spotlight I have chosen the new song by Imagine Dragons, Natural. Here’s a few reasons; First and foremost, why not? Secondly, it’s a steady progression of how they have evolved as artists in terms of the way their music has changed; thirdly it demonstrates the vocal range of front-man Dan Reynolds abilities as a singer as he hits a higher note than what we’re used to hearing from him normally. And the fourth and final reason? The music video accompanying the video shows much creativity and has Victorian/Gothic tones that just run right the way through.
Natural has both a sombre tone throughout as there are times when the song matter becomes a little bit dark, and it some areas can sound a bit haunting as well. The mood of the song itself turns both somewhat sinister and serious at various moments and the seriousness in Dan vocals adds to that because when you listen closely to his voice there is that element to it.
Lyrically the song itself is somewhat serious, dark and sinister and in actual fact are cleverly written as it deals in somewhat sombre subject matters, both personal and around you. There’s a few lines in the song which stand out “Natural a beating heart of stone, you gotta be so cold, to make it in this world, yeah, you’re a natural, living your life cutthroat, you gotta be so cold, Yeah, you’re a natural
Now this can apply to anyone who attempts to live in a cut-throat environment as refers to how you’ve occasionally got to unleash a brutal, coldest parts of yourself and let it run wild, especially if the odds are against you. If you want to get by you also need to know how to stand your ground, and how nothing is without a cost of some sort.
Natural is an amazing credit to the genius, creativity and pure musical talents of the Imagine Dragons and why they’re still one of the most amazing bands around now.

https://twitter.com/Imaginedragons?ref_src=twsrc%5Egoogle%7Ctwcamp%5Eserp%7Ctwgr%5Eauthor
https://www.facebook.com/ImagineDragons/