Upcoming gigs

Upcoming Gigs

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TESTT (Durham): April 12th

The New Adelphi (Hull): April 15th

Workshop Theatre (Leeds): April 17th

Hydra Bookshop (Bristol): April 18th

Derby Theatre: April 20th

Harrogate Theatre: April 24-25th

Ovalhouse (London): April 26-28th


London Book Launch at Ovalhouse, April 26th

York Book Launch at All Saints Church, April 29th

Small Fry DIY, Warrington, 2nd May

Spoken Weird, Halifax: 3rd May

Born Lippy, Newcastle 9th May

Shaken In Sheep Town, Skipton: 10th May

Find The Right Words, Leicester : 16th May

Queenie’s Coffee Nights, Huddersfield: 21st May

Gong Fu Poets, Coxhoe: 31st May

Verse Matters, Sheffield: 7th June

Slam Dunk, Hastings: 28th June

Word Club, Leeds: 29th June

Poetry Jam, Durham: 4th October

Wednesday, 25 December 2013

Henry's Top Albums of 2013 as voted for by Henry

My top albums of 2013

I Thought It Was Morning by Colour Me Wednesday.  Subtle and hypnotic, this re-ignited my commitment to feminism, female-fronted punk bands and boosted my confidence in pursuing vegetarianism.  I just played this album.  I’m playing it again.  And again.  I love the way politics aren’t generic, and wrapped in clever hooks and well-crafted and intelligent verses.  There’s just something about these tracks that really clicks with me, something I can’t quite put my finger on.  I don’t think this album would have appealed to me a few years ago, and I quite like that.

Much love too for Jake & The Jellyfish’s Credit Cards & Overdrafts.  A band I love live, I was worried their transition from acoustic to a more full-band electric sound would leave me wanting a return to folk roots, but really it’s a blinding piece of work which is much needed in the modern day.  I knew this album would be cracking.  It just sums up Leeds for me, it’s the perfect reminder of how much I miss it.  Jake’s lyrics are also so memorable and bitingly honest.

Similarly, whenever I’m missing home I tend to listen to Jimmy Islip & The GhostsTales from the West Riding.  It came from nowhere, but I was invited to support Jimmy’s band at the Brudenell and the way the lyrics waves a world of stories, characters and places with a backing sound which doesn’t undermine the power of the tales.  I can’t deny it’s a go-to album for the year, so catchy, and, again subtle and special. 

Quite unlike The FilamentsLand of Lions, one of the few really macho, angry Oi-themed bands I still really love.  I moved away from that sound, I find overt politics have their place, but my iPod is chocked full of those bands.  But this album really blew me away with the sheer addictive relevant angry hooks laced with very fun, dancebale anthems.  It’s a reminder Johnny One Lung’s voice is such a reliable growl (see also The 241ers & Suicide Bid)

But finally, the album of the year has to be ONSIND’s Anesthesiology.  This musical duo are experts at talking about politics, protest, love, life and depression through clever stories, magical hooks and choice-placed soundbytes.  This year hasn’t been the easiest year for me in some ways, and this album has certainly helped without being too twee or upbeat or cliché.  It packs the right about of cynical, ballsy punky home-truth honesty wrapped in heaps of North Eastern wit.  You can spend hours unpicking and analysing the intertextuality of the lyrics, or simply scream along to NEVER TRUST A TORY

Honourable mentions to Crazy Arm (The Southern Wild), Great Cynics (Like I Belong), Middleman (Counterstep), Red City Radio (Titles), Joe Solo (No Pasaran), Jonny Gill (It’s Summer, Let’s Go Home), Paper Tiger (Laptop Suntan), Benin City (Fires In The Park), The Lagan (Where’s Your Messiah Now?), the Ghost Mice/Ramshackle Glory split (Shelter) Martha (Sycamore single), No Ditching (Face Ache) and lots and lots of Mark Wynn

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