INTERVIEW: Scroobius Pip

Scroobius Pip /

Words by Olly MacNamee

Bringing that beat back once again to Birmingham, Scroobius Pip’s We Are Lizards returns the Hare & Hounds (Kings Heath) this Saturday 30th January – for direct gig info & online tickets, click hereBirm_Prev-logo-MAIN - lr

Olly MacNamee caught up with the club night’s well versed founder for a quick Birmingham Review Q&A – sharing a slightly graying love for comics, 12” acetate and the lure of the second city.

BR: What is the draw to Birmingham, given your club nights tend to run in London?

SP: It’s a bit of a second home for me because I went to Wolverhampton University, the only place outside of my hometown I’ve ever lived. With a lot of my friends at Birmingham University I spent a lot of time there around 2001.

Yeah, the people at the Hare & Hounds… every time I’ve gone there, I’ve always got on really well with them. I’ve performed at their Spoken Word nights, Speak Up, that they used to put on. I liked everyone, I liked the venue, I liked the place, so really, although I tend to do the We Are Lizards club nights exclusively in London, Birmingham tends to tempt us back. I’ve also sent artists from my label there (Speech Development Records); B Dolan went there. I’ve also done the Speech Development tour there, with Warren Peace and B Dolan.

BR: As long as you avoid Broad Street, it’s a great city.

SP: Yeah, definitely. And I’ve been in a bit of bother on Broad Street in my time, but that’s Broad Street for you.

Scroobius Pip presents We Are Lizards @ Hare & Hounds (Kings Heath) 30.01.16BR: You’re better off staying in the Hare & Hounds.

SP: Yeah, yeah. I agree. The whole Kings Heath area was new to me. The first time I performed at the Hare & Hounds was with, amongst other people, Musa Okwonga, who is a god of the spoken word, and a guy called Ed Sheeran who’s done quite well since. It really is a good spot.

BR: So what can people expect from a Scroobius Pip/We Are Lizards club night?

SP: Simply, a really good party. And another reason we keep on coming back to Birmingham, and specifically the Hare & Hounds, is that the people seem to just get it. Although the music does tend to lean towards Hip Hop, Funk and RnB and a bit of Indie, we never actually have any set rules. As long as people are getting into it and dancing, we’re happy.

I’ve been doing it in London, monthly nights for four years now, then when we took it to the Hare & Hounds and realized it was busy enough for us to come back, we were sold. The next two times it was rammed out and people were getting into it. What I liked, and it is a bit of a Midlands thing, is that the crowd was straight onto it. They were all up for it and up for a dance. In London it can be a slower start, but in Birmingham, and after a live band maybe – offering local talent a stage – we get the DJs on, including DJ Destruction who’s a former DMC champ. People were coming up to him all night long asking who he was, when he’s back, when can they see him again. He’s our jewel in the crown.

The club night in Birmingham is a bit of a weird one for me too. I don’t often drink these days, I’ve just drifted away from it really, but in Birmingham I do always tend to drink. I don’t think I’ve even drunk in 2016 yet, so the We Are Lizard club night might well be the first time.Hare & Hounds / By Ed King - Birmingham Review

BR: I’ll buy you a drink if I see you on Saturday. But moving away from We Are Lizards, like your namesake (‘The Scroobius Pip’ by Edward Lear) you seem to be something of a career chimera – with your Distractions Pieces podcast, your club nights, music, and even a graphic novel. Anything else we should know about?

SP: I’ve got a couple of comic book ideas, but they’re bouncing around with a lot of other projects at the moment. But on Monday I’ve got Kieron Gillen (comic book writer) and Jamie McKelvie (comic book artist) who did the comic, The Wicked + The Divine, coming in to record a podcast that should be out sometime in February. Gillen is currently writing the Marvel Darth Vader comic, so I’m a huge fan of them and looking forward to that. Jamie is the first comic book artist I’ve interviewed, having already interviewed comic book writers like Alan Moore (Watchmen) and Garth Ennis (Preacher).

BR:  And what about your tastes in music? With the way we can access music now, have you found you’ve become more eclectic? When I was younger I had just enough money to buy one album a week, and one only.

SP: Yeah. In my day at school, like you, if you were into Punk, like I was, you were into Punk and that was it. But when I worked in HMV, and before ‘free music’ over the Internet, that was the first place I found I could try out different genres of music more readily. Then people who worked in record shops knew their stuff, they were hugely knowledgeable of the particular section. They knew their shit. You could talk to the Hip Hop guy and he could tell you what was good.

Speech Development - lr, BR web coloursI worry that, because music is a bit more disposable, we are going to see people that don’t have those (physical) albums that changed their lives, that spoke to them. I agree, in my day I could afford a couple of albums a month and that meant that those albums were played inside and out and I knew every lyric to every song, B-sides included. Now you can just grab a hundred songs in moments, skip through the bits that you like only. But I try not to focus on that ‘coz you can come off as the bitter musician asking people to, ‘stop stealing my music’. But yeah, it does sadden me.

The amount of repairs my mum used to have to do to my coats, because the CD Discman didn’t quite fit into my pocket. But again, I would only take the one CD to school, not three or four. I used to have to get the train to school and listen to Punk, Metal, whatever.

BR: Any stand out albums that mean a lot to you? One’s you go back to.

SP: Three albums that stand out for me particularly in my formative musical years was Rancid’s Out Come the Wolves, Offspring’s Smash – which was a great record, Green Day’s seminal album, Dookie. Those were my teen years and I loved them. I’ve still got nothing but love for Green Day, even though I’m not that much into their new stuff.

BR: With the clock ticking… again like your namesake, are you ‘the wisest beast’ of them all?

SP: I think I definitely am (laughs). I feel like I’m old as fuck now, and that translates for me into wisdom.

hare-and-hounds-logo - transScroobius Pip presents We Are Lizards at the Hare & Hounds (Kings Heath) on Saturday 30th January – featuring Scroobius Pip, Destruction, Push Music, Redshift Rebels, Disco Stu + The Oddysee (live) For direct gig info & online tickets, visit

For more on Scroobius Pip, visit

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INTERVIEW: Tom Dunstan

Tom Dunstan @ The Dark Horse / By Ed King - Birmingham ReviewWords & pics by Ed King

N.B. Plaid come to The Dark Horse on 30th Jan, with Scratch Club further presenting Jehst (27th Feb) and Akala (9th Apr) at the Moseley venue. For direct updates & event info, visit

I’m sitting upstairs at The Dark Horse in Moseley talking to Tom Dunstan, aka DJ Automaton, about his recent flurry of monthly (and more) events here. It’s cold, the 200 capacity room has only 100th of its potential body heat in it, and we’re camped out on two old leather sofas in the corner. Diametrically opposed a Funktion-One speaker glares down at us – a brand name not known for its subtlety.

Tom Dunstan’s regular Hip Hop night, Scratch Club, recently found its new home at The Dark Horse after losing the bricks and mortar of its birth when The Yardbird closed down – Birmingham’s renowned Jazz/ live music venue and Conservatoire hang out.

Taking on the Tuesday night hole in The Yardbird’s eclectic diary, Scratch Club began with beat boxer Bass6 as host, open mic sessions “and me being the sound man,” explains Tom. “We didn’t book anyone, we didn’t ask any artists to come down, we just said ‘we’re doing this Hip Hop night and there’s an open mic’ – that was it. I remember it vividly; at 8pm the venue was empty, by 8:30pm you couldn’t fucking move.”

Having already promoted DJ/Mr Switch to “rammed to the rafters” crowd at its new B13 venue, back in November 2015, Scratch Club has announced Jehst and Akala as its next two headliners. It’s an impressive addition to The Dark Horse’s events programme, a venue whose recent makeover harks back to the transformation of the Hare & Hounds – when Leftfoot founder, Adam Regan, waved his magic wand over the century old boozer. Provided they can book it out, that is.

“My initial agreement with this place (The Dark Horse) was to do a monthly Scratch Club here,” explains Tom Dunstan, “we did eight years, fortnightly, at The Yardbird and never flopped once; it was never empty once. That started in May 2006, so we are looking at Akala being out 10th anniversary bash.” A birthday cake to be proud of, but why these headliners for a night whose “ethos is not to necessarily book ‘big acts’”?Tom Dunstan @ The Dark Horse / By Ed King - Birmingham Review

“We book the best acts in our minds,” continues Tom, “I’ve wanted to book Jehst since I started doing this 9 ½ years ago; he’s one of those ‘on the list’ acts. We’ve booked bigger acts, we’ve booked Public Enemy, DJ QBert, Scratch Perverts, Souls of Mischief – but Jehst is something that resonates with me. His lyrics aren’t always happy, it’s not always a positive message, but are something intrinsic to a way a lot of people are living.”

And Akala? “Akala just oozes intelligence and the correct kind of consciousness. You get this kind of perceived reputation of Hip Hop, spitting all this big dick gun talk postcode bullshit, but he (Akala) resonates with my own ethos, and not just myself but the rest of the crew at Scratch Club. Yeah, you will see a bunch of dudes (at Scratch Club) with caps on from different ethnicities rapping, scratching and beat boxing, but there’s more intelligence in them than I imagine is perceived to be.”

Those “bunch of dudes” are probably worth mentioning too, with previous Scratch Club residents going on to be “world champions in their field.” DJ/Mr Switch is five times and current World DMC Mixing Champion, whilst Scratch Club’s original beatboxing host, Bass6, is founder of The Beatbox Collective – winners of the 2015 World Beatbox Championship (team).

Plaid @ The Dark Horse - Sat 30th JanToday’s Scratch Club line-up includes Superbamz, Mr FX, Redbeard (Eatgood Records) and Sam Stealth, “although all emcees are welcome to get on stage during the open mic points of the night”. There’s also the regular Scratch Club Celebrity Show, “where Bamz will pick someone from the crowd, name the celebrity that they look like, then insult them in rhyme,” warns Tom. “And Bamz is harsh; he doesn’t care how offended you’ll get. And you might do. Don’t get up close to the stage if you’re easily offended.” Perhaps a well timed bathroom break… I went to school; I know who I look like.

But before we skip-and-a-jump into the Hip Hop on the menu, there’s a small morsel of Electronica to chow down – as on Saturday 30th January Tom Dunstan is bringing Plaid to play in this first floor suburban venue. That’s right… Plaid, The Black Dog founders and Warp Record stalwarts will be playing in Moseley. And on next week’s bill, a leprechaun riding a unicorn.

“Plaid is being booked as part of a new night,” explains Tom Dunstan, “which I’m running with a London Electro DJ called ADJ (Andy Jaggers) and one of the safest people I’ve met through music.” Both DJ Automaton and ADJ are featured on the night’s line up, alongside Plaid. “We used to DJ at Greenstreet together and hit off a friendship; every time I DJ in London he comes out to see me. Andy runs the Dodo Club, on a boat on the Thames, which Plaid are the residents at. So one drunken night after I’d done a gig at Brixton Hootenanny, we’re back at Andy’s flat hitting the posh whiskey and he asks ‘when we’re going to do something again?’ So I say, ‘…get Plaid.’ It took us from August 2015 to get it sorted.”

Were Coda (Plaid’s booking agents) concerned that you wanted to bring such a prestigious booking to a newly operated venue? “There are no agents or Warp Records involved. It’s on the official Warp calendar and they’re on the posters, but we’re doing this because we’re friends. If Andy (Turner) and Ed (Handley) say they’re playing, they’re playing.”The Dark Horse / By Ed King - Birmingham Review

A useful black book to have, and one earned through a regular series of Earko events at The Medicine Bar in the late nineties – where Tom Dunstan and co-promoter Ben Henneman brought acts from John Peel to Aphex Twin to the bohemian Digbeth watering hole. Indeed, “Plaid were the first act I ever booked, for Earko back in 1998,” tells Tom. “They were just lovely blokes, and let me get on stage and start scratching whilst they were playing live.”

Memories of The Medicine Bar will bring tears, of both joy and frustration, to many in Birmingham – as Simon Jones’s war of attrition was the blueprint for Digbeth’s nightlife today. “I remember the magic of those years, how much it meant to us,” admits Tom Dunstan. “Trip-Hop came out, Mo Wax appeared, I was confronted with Ninja Tunes and Warp Records; all of a sudden everything changed.”

But after closing its doors in early 2010, The Medicine Bar (or Factory Club, as it was known when it ceased trading) left a legacy arguably not honoured by subsequent tenants. The Custard Factory venue has changed hands several times in the past half decade, with no would-be-pretenders matching the eclectic events programme that brought acts from Mr Scruff to De La Soul (on a Monday?!?!) to the city centre back streets.

The Dark Horse / By Ed King - Birmingham ReviewThe Medicine Bar’s most prominent Round Two happened in Kings Heath, when a late license gave the Hare & Hounds a chance to compete with its city centre counterparts – as Adam Regan brought an absurdly rich line up to the south Birmingham suburb. It marked a greater shift too, as the Hare & Hounds’ success greased the egos and wheels of further extended hours applications, and planted the seeds of the 2am turnout that now thrives across B12-14. But with all these neighbours turned venues, and the residents in between, is it still peaceful in the provinces?

“Certain folks ask me if it (Scratch Club) clashes with nearby venues,” explains Tom, “and no. Because I speak to those promoters; if we’re having a night on the same night we contact each other and wish each other good luck. I’ll give you a for instance, when we had DJ Switch here we sold out – rammed to the rafters. Roni Size sold out the Hare & Hounds – rammed to the rafters. And down the road at the Old Print Works there were over 300 people dancing to salsa, all on one night.” I recognise a look of both solidarity and relief. “There is no ‘rivalry’ or anything like that; we actually want each other to do well. We genuinely get happy when other people do well. And to quote a local venue owner, ‘it takes a lot more than one venue to create a scene’”.

A reassuring sentiment, and knowing some of the protagonists involved it’s one I can believe is believed in. For the most part. But having worked on two extended hours applications for venues in these suburbs, including the one we’re sitting in (when it traded as The Cross), I know there’s more to content with than competition. And the Funktion-One speaker stack continues to glare…

But the economic impact is palpable; with certain operators working hard to allay any fears or residents associations that might try to, literally, pull the plug. There are festivals in the Private Park for Christ’s sake. And the husband and wife team behind The Dark Horse have arguably already proved their scope with the phoenix like resurgence of The Prince of Wales, alongside a long fought battle at Epic Skate Park (you try heating a listed bus depot). But is this just a question of right place/right time, like Oscillate bringing Insanity Sect and APL to Moseley Dance Centre, or is it something more perennial?scratch-club-logo-(jpeg) - BR web colours, coppped

“It feels like it’s meant to be,” answers Tom Dunstan, “the idea of going to my local boozer, seeing my pals, and seeing an awesome world class act is so much more appealing than going all the way into town, dressing up, blah blah, spending out.”

“Look at us,” continues Tom, “we can watch Plaid here in three weeks time, sat on these Chesterfield sofas, drinking tea if we want. Tell me in your late 30’s that’s not an appealing thought.”

Plaid come to The Dark Horse on Saturday 30th January – with support from DJs ADJ, Automaton + Michael Valentine West. For direct gig info & online tickets, visit

Scratch Club presents DJ Jehst (27th Feb) and Akala (9th Apr) at The Dark Horse in Moseley. For updates & event info, direct from The Dark Horse, visit

For more on Tom Dunstan, aka DJ Automaton, visit

For more on The Dark Horse, visit

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BREVIEW: Daughter @ O2 Institute 20.01.16

Daughter @ O2 Institute 20.01.16 / By Harry Mills - Birmingham Review

For the full Flickr of pics, click here




Words by Ed King / Pics by Harry Mills

Due to cabin fever and relative poverty I’m walking to the gig tonight. I’m cold but complicit; Daughter are playing at the O2 Institute, alongside their 4AD label mate Pixx, and it’s a gig I’ve been scratching to see.

Daughter @ O2 Institute 20.01.16 / By Harry Mills - Birmingham ReviewFor the past fortnight I’ve had Daughter’s sophomore album, Not to Disappear, running through my head. It’s a bit of a monster, a ten track avalanche with videos that would break bigger men than me. And now, after hearing it virtually non-stop for two weeks, I need flesh (to read Ed King’s Birmingham Review of Not to Disappear, click here).

I need time too. I’m late. I’m not going to see Pixx. And as I walk through the park the late frost turns the concrete silver and dangerous, blades of grass so brittle I’m not sure they’ll make it.

The lake is frozen too; the only warm light comes from the capoeira and spoken word workshops at the local arts centre, heads bobbing with unwatched enthusiasm. I feel numb in this kingdom; I swig the miniature bottle of Famous Grouse left over from Christmas, apparently this is ‘not drinking tonight’, and try to both speed up and not fall over (thankfully some photographers keep better time; to see Harry Mills’ full Flickr of Pixx, click here).

I stammer through the back streets of Digbeth and eventually spot the O2 Institute’s main entrance, a trickle of bodies coming in and out of the archway. I’ve definitely missed Pixx, this is half time in action, so I quickly ask the relevant questions to the relevant faces and make my way to the main arena, being stewarded according. Tonight is not just full, it’s busy; allocated seating, you’re an ‘S’ or a ‘B’. There are a lot of groups, conversation and action, and as I stand in the thoroughfare from one bar to the other, with my back rigid against the back wall, a small crowd gathers in front of me and starts to circle, dance and shriek. I am irritated by children in men. There will soon be no room at all.

Daughter @ O2 Institute 20.01.16 / By Harry Mills - Birmingham ReviewThe stage is set simply, from what I can see over heads and in between shoulders – two mics and a raised drum kit, with gold four spots shining out into the crowd and purple par cans illuminating the dry ice and backdrop. It’s a big room, the O2 Institute’s main hall, with a high ceiling, and without elaborate lighting the stage can look a little sparse (in previous incarnations there was an old church organ that used to sit along the rear of the stage). If Not to Disappear was indeed written with bigger venues in mind, I’m not sure how tonight is going to pan out.

But I’ll find out soon enough, as the limited lights come down to a BIG CHEER from the “sold out” auditorium (as I would be later informed by a gregarious member of the bar staff). The lights come back up with another BIG CHEER, shining down on Elena Tonra and Igor Haefeli at the forefront of the stage – decorated in black and red, standing either side of Remi Aguilella’s elevated throne. There is subtle hush, not silence, as Torna slides across the bass line and introduction to ‘How’ – a significant album track from Not to Disappear. And by my count, the room has about twelve seconds…

20.01.16-30 copy - CopyBAM. White light and searing guitar pierces through the air above the crowd; like a surprise or collision, we stand dumbstruck. ‘How’ is a fierce song on Daughter’s new album, one that helped set the pace for me when I first heard the LP, but live… this is a bona fide rock band on stage.

Four and a half minutes later we are released, briefly, before the sonorous whirling and plucked guitar of ‘Tomorrow’ brings album No1 onto the stage. I’ll admit here, I fu*king love Daughter’s debut (apart from ‘Human’, which, just, didn’t, you know) which makes watching it live a precarious job. I am precious and critic, a terrible duality. But it’s perfect, and I mean perfect. A word I never, ever use.

But so far I can’t fault either the old or the new. Haefeli’s guitar is richer yet absolute in the real world, Aguilella’s pounding percussion marches, rises and falls with Buddy Rich fervour, and Torna’s vocals… I can’t believe this is the same woman I watched stare at the ground whilst singing ‘Peter’.

“..thank you. Thank you. It’s our fifth date and… it’s great to see you out.” Torna’s absurdly soft on stage speaking voice, considering, squeaks out a well received recognition, before the echoed drums and wistful strings of ‘Numbers’ leads into the song’s rolling thunderclaps and exceptional lyrics. This is another sterling album track on Not to Disappear, but, again, live… Christ. You better, you better, you better, you better make me. Me better, me better. You better make me better.”

Daughter @ O2 Institute 20.01.16 / By Harry Mills - Birmingham ReviewThe odd swing/miss of the evening comes up next, as an unapologetic techno drum beats out the pace for ‘No Care’ – another new born offering, and the benchmark (to me) of any Daughter to come.

It is a superb song, but live, tonight, there’s something missing. Powerful, yes, but as effective as it has been through my earphones for the past fortnight, no. And I really wanted this to be ‘the moment’. After the bell rings, the audience are silent for a second longer than they should be.

The set rolls across old to new, with most of my drunk spider notes saying ‘better live’ and ‘ET’s vocals’, before I am schooled again by a staggering live delivery of ‘Human’. As I mentioned, not my favourite on If You Leave, and a track I’ll shamefacedly admit I sometimes skip when it comes on. But to repeat myself, watching it live…

Whatever you think they are, whatever place they held in your head, whatever weaknesses and strengths you think Daughter have to celebrate or challenge, they are a rock band. A solid, tight, punchy and powerful rock band. I stand here watching a track I don’t like and I get it, now I get it. You just have to see this on stage. And absorb as much of it as you can.Daughter @ O2 Institute 20.01.16 / By Harry Mills - Birmingham Review

Torna is a beautiful lyricist and songwriter, one with heartbreaking insight; she means something, and delivers her words with such precision and poignancy that they’re impossible to avoid. Igor Haefeli has taken that thread and made a unique blanket that no other band, not even on their own labels’ roster (which is the perfect place for Daughter) can compare to – it is his blood on their hands here, and it stains something quite incredible both on the recordings and off. Then, like some hybrid of Greek mythology, Animal, and Seattle grunge, you have Remi Aguilella – who, quite rightly so, finishes Daughter’s main set tonight with a spotlight and drum solo.

After a glorious 16 song set, the gig ends a single ‘Made of Stone’ encore – a perhaps unplanned denouement that would have been the biggest relief to the venue’s security. I flit around the lovesick hall, trying to verify the “NAME OF TRACK NO5??’ (incorrectly, it was track No10 I was after) as the entire crowd jams itself into, and out of, the main exit. I’m sober, with the cheap rye having worn off a while ago, and prepare myself for the hour long return journey. ‘Home’.

All the way back I listen to both Daughter’s albums on Shuffle, appreciating aspects from both the debut and sophomore that I’d either missed or ignored. And I’m not to know it tonight but this resurgence will last for a while, it will even increase – the happy hangover of Daughter @ O2 Institute 20.01.16 / By Harry Mills - Birmingham Reviewthe O2 Institute gig keeping me close to this impressive twenty track plus portfolio. Thank you for that.

As I cross through the park in reverse order, Canadian geese are standing in the centre of the frozen lake – churlish, isolated and defiant. I watch them for a while, blowing the smoke from my ‘walk-home-joint’ across the sandpaper air and into the fluorescent lights surrounding the arts centre walls. It’s an oddly pointless endevour in below freezing temperatures, but I’m curious and distracted, a little lost, setting fire to our insides for fun.

And as I eventually reach my front door, in eerily film soundtrack timing, I realise I’ve not listened to the track on If You Leave that I would usually have started to walk with. In fact, most of my attention is on Not to Disappear. I didn’t skip ‘Human’ either.

Not to Disappear is out now, released by 4AD. For more on Daughter, including online purchase points, visit

Visit the official Daughter website at 

For more on Pixx, visit

For more from 4AD, visit Print

For more on Kilimanjaro Live, visit

For more from the O2 Institute, including full event listings & online tickets sales, visit

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BPREVIEW: Victories at Sea @ Hare & Hounds 21.01.16

Victories at Sea - artwork by Lewes Herriot

Words by Ed King / Artwork by Lewes Herriot – courtesy of This is Tmrw

On Thursday 21st January, Victories at Sea play their first show of 2016 at the Hare & Hounds – with support from Horsebeach + Flamingo Flame.Main with web colour bcg - lr

Doors open at 8pm, with tickets charged at £7+booking fee – as promoted by This is Tmrw. For direct gig info & online ticket sales, click here

Having signed to Static Caravan in early 2013, Victories at Sea released their debut LP – Everything Forever, in October 2015. A rather exquisite blend of mournful pop, Indie guitar and that tempered electro/rock that so few get right, Victories at Sea will hopefully be enjoying some well deserved momentum from their debut. If not, there’s probably a few online avenues to start making amends; when you look at the alternative layers of mainstream mediocrity, I guess we only have ourselves to blame (the record buying public, not Birmingham Review. Although this is the first time we’ve featured them. So a little from Column A…).

This is Tmrw - logo transBut hyperbole, market trends and guilt aside, Static Caravan have probably the best pitch for this well worth while release. To find out more about Everything Forever direct from the label, or even get ya’ mitts on a copy (‘…if you even slightly fancy one’), click here

And if you need to nudge further senses, spending a cup of tea or two shifting through the Victories at Sea Youtube channel would not be a bad way to start. There’s some well thought out and executed videos to accompany many of the album tracks, with bright colours in low light, metal, steel and tales of urban decay to help bring out the flavour. Works too.

But to cherry pick one we’ve gone for ‘Up’. Have a stop, look, listen below:

‘Up’ by Victories at Sea

Victories at Sea play at the Hare & Hounds on Thursday 21st January, with support from Horsebeach + Flamingo Flame. For direct gig info, visit

For more on Victories at Sea, visit

For more from Static Caravan, visit


For more from This is Tmrw, visit

For more from the Hare & Hounds, including full event listings & online tickets sales, visit

BPREVIEW: Daughter @ O2 Institute 20.01.16

Daughter / By Francesca Jane Allen

Words by Ed King / Pic by Francesca Jane Allen – courtesy of 4AD

On Wednesday 20th January, Daughter perform at the O2 Institute in Birmingham – with support from 4AD label mate, Pixx.Main with web colour bcg - lr

Doors open at 7pm, with tickets charged at £17.50 – as promoted by Kilimanjaro Live. For direct gig & online ticket sales, click here

Comprised of Elena Tonra (vocals/guitar), Igor Haefeli (guitar) and Remi Aguilella (percussion), Daughter are back in Birmingham for the fifth date on their 12 date UK tour – before 10 dates in mainland Europe and an extensive North American circuit.

Daughter are touring their second studio album, Not to Disappear, which was released through 4AD on Thursday 15th January. The eagerly awaited sophomore (by us, at least) is the follow up to Daughter’s widely celebrated (by us…) debut LP, If You Leave – which introduced the London based three piece back in March 2013.

4ADTo read a Birmingham Review of Daughter’s new album, Not to Disappear, click here

Recorded at Nicholas Vernhes’s Rare Book Room Studios in Brooklyn, Not to Disappear was a collaborative production between the French born/New York based producer and Daughter’s own guitarist, Igor Haefeli.

Alongside 4AD, Nicholas Vernhes has worked with labels including Kitsuné, One Little Indian and Bella Union; he has produced albums for Speedy Ortiz, The War on Drugs and Animal Collective. On their debut LP, Haefeli worked with Rodaidh McDonald – the Scottish engineer/producer known for his work with The XX and Savages.

On the supporting press release for Not to Disappear, issued by 4AD, Elena Tonra says: “Nicolas (Vernhes) was wonderful. We’d been living in London, and demoing and writing here – we’re perfectionists, pulling in different directions – so it was really beneficial to go somewhere else to record it, just for a change of scene. Working with Nicolas was a real injection of energy.”Print

“I’m a control freak, so it’s hard to let go,” adds Haefeli, “but I found a lot in common with him, as much in our positive sides as in our faults. He brought a quality of recording that wouldn’t have been possible otherwise. And he’s just a fun person to be around.” Sounds like Christmas.

But all the ingredients of proof are eventually tasted, with the first two helpings from Not to Disappear served with rich and dark video productions. Released in September 2015, ‘Doing the Right Thing’ unfolds a heartbreaking narrative about the love and loss behind dementia. Whilst ‘Numbers’, released in November 2015, literally walks us through the isolated human endevour.

Or it’s a subtle warning to Chris de Burgh… have a stop, look, listen below:

‘Numbers’ by Daughter

Daughter playing at the O2 Institute on Wednesday 20th January – with support from Pixx. For direct gig info, visit

Not to Disappear is released via 4AD from Friday 15th January. For more on Daughter, including online purchase points, visit

Visit the official Daughter website at 


For more from 4AD, visit 

For more from the O2 Institute, including full event listings & online tickets sales, visit