The line up for the Lowlands Festival has been announced.
The 3 day festival takes place in Holland from Friday 19th to Sunday 21st August.
Bands include Sigur Ros, LCD Soundsystems, Foals, Chvrches and Eagles of Death Metal.
Earlybird tickets are on sale for 169 euros (about £131).
We've went a number of years ago and it was awsome. The sound was great as all the stages were in large tents with wooden floors and the food was superb. (We loved the cherry waffles).
“My country heart, is yours from the start” sings Michael Gallagher, aka The Mining Co. over plaintive pedal steel and acoustic guitar, and instantly we’re transported to the Laurel Canyon, or at least to a scorched dustbowl somewhere in the mid Western States. Except Gallagher is from London, albeit with Irish roots, and with the opening track Country Heart, he might just have set the scene for an Americana gem of an album.
Due for release in early March, the album treads a path somewhere between Mojave 3 and Phosphorescent, although more classic influences are obvious too. This is both a traditional and modern album full of widescreen and spacious tunes about love and loss, and while never in a hurry, the 9 tracks on show run at just under 30 minutes.
Cover of Night introduces some keyboards to the backdrop, and again you would swear this had come from the States.
Ballad of The Mining Company is a heartfelt song about a driver working down a mine all day, without daylight and love in his life - a beautiful track that just reveals itself a little bit more on each listen.
Copper Ghosts is the nearest we get to something you would describe as uptempo, and also introduces a female backing vocalist, minimally admittedly, but it just adds that little something to the track and indeed the album.
The ubiquitous banjo in country music is used sparingly, making an appearance in penultimate track Lonesome Bird, and this is also the first track that hints at Gallagher’s Irish accent and connections.
Closing track Keep on Rollin’, all 1 minute 40 seconds of it, is an unashamed country ditty.
This is an album to keep us warm during these cold wet winter months, and almost matches the wintry mood of the country while giving us a glimpse of optimism for the summer months ahead. It’s a lovely slice of Americana, alt country and alt folk all wrapped up in a small and bijou, but perfectly formed package.
Support tonight comes from local band Keto who despite a nervous start provide an half hour of lo-fi atmospheric tunes with Chan Marshall (Cat Power) style vocals from Leah Sinead.
Bob Mould arrives at a sold out Rescue Rooms for the first night of a UK tour in support of new album 'Patch The Sky' which will be released in March.
As the initial roaring feedback fades, Bob accompanied by his regular rhythm section of Jason Narducy (bass) and Jon Wurster (drums) blast into 'Good Idea' followed by ' Changes' which immediately gets the audience on his side, both tracks are taken from 'Copper Blue' the debut Sugar album which was NME album of the year for 1992. Skip forward 20 years for 'The Descent' and 'I Don't Know You Anymore' from the excellent recent albums 'Silver Age' and 'Beauty & Ruin' which have seen Bob back at the height of powers, fusing the heavy power-pop tunes and melodies and smothering it all with a generous dollop of distorted guitars. New single ' Voices In My Head' and the other new tracks played tonight happily appear to follow this trend.
Bob congratulates Nottingham of being a UNESCO City of Literature “ I'm a word guy myself, which you can hear when I'm not being loud on the guitar”, and I can confirm that tonight's show is the most chest-thumping, ear-splitting LOUD one I've been at in years. There's little respite between tracks either as Bob says”Gotta get this done before the disco starts” referring to the 10 o'clock curfew for the club night.
'Hoover Dam' which is another treat from 'Copper Blue' and 'The War' get more audience shout- alongs. There's a new slower track, a strummy, dreamy number which might be called 'Losing Sleep'.
For the encore the musical clock winds back to the mid 1980's and Bob's time in Husker Du. The middle-aged moshpit kicks in at the start of 'Flip Your Wig', and keeps going through 'Hate Paper Doll' , 'Something I Learned Today' and finally ' Makes No Sense At All'.
Just like the cover of 'Beauty & Ruin' as the young man from Husker Du ages disgracefully into the writer of tunes of driven guitars and killer melodies, tonight a grinning Bob Mould appears to be thoroughly enjoying his own silver age.
Everybody’s Dying to Meet You is Flowers second album release, following their 2014 debut, and Bernard Butler produced Do What You Want To, It’s What You Should Do.
For the uninitiated, Flowers are a London based indie trio comprising of Rachel Kenedy on vocals, Same Ayres on guitars, and Jordan Hockley on drums, and have an almost nostalgic sound from the 90’s indie scene. Rachel’s voice however wouldn’t be out of place on Songs of Praise, with its almost pure, choral quality and the backing band give off a distinctive Cocteau’s whiff.
Don’t however think the overall effect is at all tweet or fragile, because these guys can rock in their own way too, and a couple of plays in reveal a certain muscularity.
The album opens with the ridiculously catchy Pull My Arm, which starts with the vocals at such a pitch that local dogs' ears pricked up (don’t even try singing along lads), before the jangly guitars and aforementioned muscularity fills out the sound. That’s the way to open an album.
The following track, Bitter Pill, showcases Rachels, fragile crystal clear vocals fabulously - you might wonder if this sound could ever be replicated in a live venue ? Well, when I saw them at The Brudenell in Leeds a while back, the answer was yes, and the crowd were so mesmerised, you could hear a pin drop.
Ego Loss almost has a touch of Echobelly about it, certainly the vocals again have me thinking about Sonya Madan’s style.
Russian Doll introduces the listener to some subtle keyboards, just to add a little OMD into the mix and another layer and dimension to the sound which is a nice touch.
Bathroom Sink closes this delightful album, which again opens with just the delicate vocals, before the distorted guitar adds atmosphere and heft.
This is a step on from the debut, despite not leaving the template too far behind, with 10 assured songs given space to breathe. Another addition to the strong start to 2016.