A review I did of SHVPES during at the Red Rooms in Nottingham for MusicNotts at the end of last month, read and enjoy.
A review I did of SHVPES during at the Red Rooms in Nottingham for MusicNotts at the end of last month, read and enjoy.
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
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.
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?
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.
May I introduce you to Sam, Alex, Mark, Tobias and Lee, five guys, all come from the deepest depths of Derbyshire who together make Raised by Owls. Raised by Owls are among the latest rock greats who fuse rock, metal, thrash-energy, sharp vocals with full-on screamo backing. And a passion for Mary Berry and The Great British Bake-Off (I’m as confused as you). For further listening check out The Great British Grind Off, Off to The Pub, Rot Stewart and The Almighty Sunday Roast. Derby, you’ve done us proud with these metal greats.
Who are you guys?
Hi! Raised by Owls is:
Sam Fowler – Vocals.
Alex LeGrice – Guitar & backing vocals.
Mark Bainbridge – Guitar
Tobias Cope – Bass
Lee Deane – Drums
And how did you all get together?
Me (Sam) and Alex just started messing around in Alex’s old bedroom at his parents’ house. We started ripping off bands that we really liked, and I would put ridiculous lyrics over the top of the songs. Shortly after we got our good friend Lee involved and started making daft internet music videos.
Once the videos started to take off online, we wanted to start making live appearances. That’s when we inducted Mark and Tobias to complete the line-up.
The five of us all grew up in a rural town in Derbyshire called Ashbourne. It’s a bit like Royston Vasey off ‘The League of Gentlemen’ which probably explains why our music is so odd.
What are your music influences?
Mainly extreme metal. However, I have a lot of respect for bands that are willing to experiment and try something different.
Some of our favourite bands are Carcass, Cannibal Corpse, Pig Destroyer, Napalm Death, At the Gates, The Black Dahlia Murder, Behemoth, Aborted, Revocation, Every Time I Die, Mastodon. The list goes on.
On a scale of 1-10 how rock would you say you are?
We’re probably minus 10. We’re not a very cool band.
Story behind band’s name?
We can’t remember, which is embarrassing. I think it was during recording in Alex’s bedroom, I vaguely remember that we wanted to take a name that would normally sound metal, like ‘Raised by Wolves’ and replace with a less brutal animal, like an owl.
You released an album, The Great British Grind Off, wouldn’t be a reference to a certain cookery show?
ALL HAIL MARY BERRY, THE ONE TRUE QUEEN OF BAKING!
It’s a whooping 24 tracks long, how long did it take to work on the whole album?
It started as just a laugh. We never intended to release it to the public in the beginning. Then we started making daft videos for the songs and people online responded, so we decided to put it out.
We started recording it around September 2015 and finished around September 2016. We weren’t working solidly. We’d just mess around every few weekends and see what came out. The recording of the next release will probably be a lot more focused as we have a handful of people who actually care about our musical output now ha-ha.
Have you played in Nottingham before?
Yes sir, many times, It’s always a good laugh. it’s our home from home… as it’s only up the road, and we love Taco Bell.
Derby needs a Taco Bell!
And are you looking forward to Macmillan Fest this weekend?
Very much so. Our last show was Truck Festival back in July, so we’ve had a bit over a month off. I’ve been itching to get back on stage.
Looking forward to checking out some awesome bands and hanging with some cool dudes and dudettes that we haven’t seen in ages. It’s going to be good clean fun.
You’ve been together since 2015 and have an album as well as numerous gigs under you belt such as Bloodstock and Truck Festival, what can we expect from you next?
A few more gigs spotted about to see the year out. Then we’re planning to release another record in the first part of 2019. The last few months have been spent hiding away and writing, and now we’re just starting to record.
Next year there will be a new record, new daft videos, more gigs and hopefully some festival appearances! It’s all looking very exciting.
And finally, were can fans hear more of your music?
Go and download our debut EP ‘The Great British Grind Off’ for FREE on bandcamp here: https://raisedbyowls.bandcamp.com/
Like us on Facebook here: http://www.facebook.com/RaisedByOwls/
And watch us here: http://www.youtube.com/raisedbyowls
The crowds slowly gathered themselves into the main room the moment the doors and continued to pour in over the next half hour till there wasn’t much floor space left to fill. As the crowd got more and more hyped with excitement enthusiasm you could practically smell the adrenaline, then the lights suddenly dimmed-down and the show was officially started.
First to take to the stage was Liverpool’s own Death Blooms. These guys were just incredible to see live on-stage and oozed sweat, energy as well as powerful guitar riffs and front-man Paul effortlessly owned the stage and had the crowd in his hands. Seriously, these guys could re-define metal madness they’re that intense when performing. Nottingham’s own metal pleasers, The Five Hundred, took the stage and put on an amazing set. I wasn’t disappointed, yet again they delivered and I absolutely loved every minute of their set. The Five Hundred definitely know how to get the crowds going and all the energy put into it was practically bursting at the seams. By now not only was the heat rising but so was the enthusiasm and love from the crowd.
Finally, SHVPES took to the stage to finish the night, however cos there had been an 8 – minute delay things had to be rushed a little, either way they were definitely worth the wait. Now I openly admit that I’ve never seen a band like SHVPES before but glad I stuck around a while as they were fantastic. One of the ways I can sum them up is the UK’s equivalent to Rage Against The Machine. Full-on, completely manic, full of energy, oozing adrenaline and excellent rap skills courtesy of front-man Griffin Dickson. Within moments of them starting fist were flying into the air, everybody was jumping and the Griffin had everybody in the palm of his hand s. An amazing night, three fantastic bands.
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 🙂
My quick chat with Nottingham-based musician Holly Fallon ahead of her EP launch. Please read, enjoy and share.
Direct from my music column from MusicNotts, have a read and enjoy
A piece I did for GSGM (Global Sound Media Group) on French artist Sophie Baudry, better know as Million Miles video for her new single Honey. Have a read and enjoy.
This was an interview I did with Nottingham-based band Eyre Llew for their upcoming album Atelo. Sadly the interview itself never saw the light of day so for all those who’re fans of the funky trio, have a read and enjoy.
How long did you work on this album?
We wrote, recorded and produced it over 2 years around touring and playing festivals around Europe
What can we expect?
It’s dynamic with ambient soundscapes and sing-along chorus. We’re really proud of it with parts recorded all over the UK
Are there any tracks to listen out for?
We’ve released two singles from it so far, Atelo and Havoc. They were released with videos from our album video series that were shot in Norway and the Gran Canaria.
What sort of album is it, sound-wise?
We’re often labelled as a post-rock/indie band. That’s definitely where our influences are.
Inspirations for the album?
We’ve got fancy pedal boards so we love reverbs and delays. Artists such as Noah Gunderson, Bon Iver, Sigur Ros and A Winged Victory for The Sullen.
Who did you collaborate with in the making?
No one. We self-produced the album. Though we did have a group vocal recording for our fans at the studio.
What are you calling the album?
The album is called Atelo.
Looking forward to touring with it?
Yes definitely, S. Korea, nine countries around Europe, UK tours and an album launch show at Rescue Rooms, Nottingham on November 10th.
How much interest has been raised?
We’ve been touring around Europe for two years now, playing festivals all over. The response has been wonderful, it’s great to get over our first album to our patient fans.
Any possible future collaborations?
Not sure yet, but we’re open to ideas.
It’s that time again in which the UK will vote on its singing representative, who one chosen to represent the UK in this years’ Eurovision Song Contest 2018 in Lisbon, Portugal. Now I openly admit I’m not a huge almighty fan of the Eurovision but even I have to admit I’ve got something for a weakness for it (when quickly flicking back-and-forth between that and Glastonbury which I much prefer anyway, just saying). Now, this year we’ve got six new artists to choose from, and so far, there seems to be some potential.
This years’ (lucky?) hopefuls
A solo artist who has been on UK TV before on Britain’s Got Talent back in 2013, she’ll be performing her new song Legends. Legends has a mixture of tribal beat, infectious rhythm and energy that just fuses together with very little effort and as far so solo artists go Asanda’s just amazing.
Goldstone: I Feel The Love
An all-female trio consisting of Rhiannon, Helen and Aimee who between them all have experience both acting and singing both on TV and stage who’ll be singing their song I Feel The Love. It’s exactly 3 minutes long and it’s fast-paced, energetic and upbeat from the start and the girls voice fuse together effortlessly.
Jaz Ellington: You
One of only two male solo artists in the six who is also a talented old-school soul-singer who’s got one amazing voice will be performing his song You. Seriously though he sounds really good and You makes for great listening pleasure.
Liam Tamne: Astronaut
The second of our male solo artists and West End Star who’s performed in numerous hit musicals such as Wicked, Hairspray and Phantom of the Opera to name but a few. A guy with an incredible who who’ll be putting his acting talents aside to sing his song Astronaut. Liam has got an incredible voice that captivates your attention and his entry song makes good listening.
This woman is practically the jack-of-all-trades where the performing industry’s concerned as she’s got numerous talents; singer, dancer, vocal-coach and DJ, and to top it off she’s performed in some of the top clubs around the world. She’s also an accomplished actress to. Raya will be singing her song Crazy. It’s just under 3 minutes long and the song itself is both catchy, fresh and has that upbeat feel to it.
Out of all of our six hopefuls she is the only one with experience in the Eurovision itself having appeared way back in 2015 as a backing singer for Loic Nottet and Blanche last year (small world). SuRie has much singing experience under her belt and will be performing her song Storm. It’s just a second over 3 minutes long and sounds very soothing and her voice glides through the song beautifully.