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OLD TATTOOS

the debut album by

THE BRANDY THIEVES

Many of you know about my love of The Brandy Thieves. A great Leicester based band with influences from folk, punk and soul, with a healthy dose of scar thrown in for good measure.

The Brandy Thieves came together in late 2012 during which time they have produced some of the best festival anthems around. So, it came as something of a surprise to find that, until November 2015, they had not produced an album! The guys have released a couple of ep’s but not a full album… well they have now it’s called ‘Old Tattoos’ and I got my hands on a copy of it!

Through their music, The Brandy Thieves use well crafted lyrics and an array of musical instruments to tell, in the great folk tradition, a story. Stories based on their experience of life. They tell stories of alcohol fueled benders and the kind of social commentary that can only come from a life well lived. Their songs are catchy and easy to get into and before you know it, you are hooked!

If their ep’s and live gigs tell you a story, then their new album, ‘Old Tattoos’, use those stories to take you on a journey; the journey of The Brandy Thieves. The album brings together their music from the very beginning of their existence to where they are today. In many ways the listeners become voyeurs, watching through sound, the very personal journeys these guys have gone through and which comes through in their lyrics and music.

I loved the new album, Old Tattoo’s and have it playing at least once a day, much to my kids annoyance; they are big fans of The Brandy Thieves but, they tell me,  “you always have it on!”. Well that may be near the truth but I make no apologies for it! So The Brandy Thieves first album, Old Tattoo’s’, should be in everyone’s collection and I can hardly wait for their next one!

The Brandy Thieves are a very talented bunch who deserve to have much wider recognition than they currently enjoy! So, watch out Mumford and Son, you have some serious competition!!!

 

FACEBOOK: http://facebook.com/thebrandythieves

TWIT: @thebrandythieves

Gigs:

 

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The Brandy Thieves

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18 videos featuring some of the best bands on the circuit!!!

All artists and bands featured on TheGuyWithaStick  Vid-Lists also have reviews on http://www.theguywithastick.com just use the search box on the right of this page… ENJOY!

 

 

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Hailing from Ilkeston in Derbyshire, Matt Henshaw describes his current location has Derby, Nottingham and Leicester… he gets about this guy! In fact, Matt Henshaw has to be one of the hardest working musicians around. It often seems there is not a day or night goes by that Matt is not adorning a stage somewhere in the UK, it’s quite understandable to suspect there may well be several Matt Henshaws, all cloned from the original, but no! I can assure you there is only one Matt Henshaw… only one, brilliantly talented, trend setting, soul saving, Matt Henshaw!

Matt describes his style of music as ‘rhythmic gospel’, and in doing so Matt invents a whole new genre which, without the blink of an eye or  a scratch of music journalists head, the genre is accepted… and why not! What Matt does, and does expertly, is his own thing! He’s not bothered about ‘pigeon holes’ or classifications, he is bothered about his life and his life is music!

Matt has had something of a rebirth lately, standing-down from his University job to concentrate on relaunching his career in music, following his epiphany on the road to stardom and alcoholism which saw the demise of his former, and very highly rated, band ‘Censored’ in 2008. Since this time Matt has done some amazing things, from recording a cracking album with MC Rudimental st al, to re-launching his career. You can’t keep this guy down, he is determined, he’s confident and he is one of the most decent human beings I have had the pleasure of meeting he’s also destined for success!!!

TheGuyWithaStick have included a couple of Matt Henshaw tracks on the acoustic playlist on the ‘Feature’ tab at www.theguywithastick.com

Matt Henshaw can be seen all over the UK including OSFEST Music Festival in Derbyshire on July 26 and Leicester’s Simon Says on July 27th

For a fuller list of Matt’s upcoming events follow this link

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Matt Henshaw

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The beautifully enchanting Elizabeth Cornish and her band, comprising of: on drums – Adam Wykes, bass – Jason Skinner and on additional guitar – Mark Riley Cardwell, are wonderful a tremendous acoustic folk band following in a great tradition, and doing it justice!

Influenced by the likes of David Gray, Alanis Morissette and Laura Marling (which comes across in Elizabeth’s guitar playing) with undertones of Susan Vega, Elizabeth Cornish and the band are becoming quite a force in the region. Elizabeth’s voice is well suited to the genre mature yet amazingly gentle…

 

… her finger-picking guitar play is highly complimented by Mark’s electric guitar and Jason’s bass play with it all brought together by Adam’s drums and Elizabeth’s vocal, and what vocals they are… a master class in folk pop!

I always thought that the best thing to happen on the 15th of March was my birthday, so you can imagine how distressed I was to be ‘gazumped’ by a piece of plastic!!! Ok! it wasn’t ‘just’ a ‘piece of plastic’, it was something much more precious it was the birth of an album… Elizabeth Cornish’s album called ‘Displaced’ which had it’s launch at the Cookie on March 15th this year… and what an album it is!

Below is the title track…

 

…It truly is a must for any music collection!

There’s an old saying about ‘standing on the shoulders of giants’, well, in time, Elizabeth Cornish and the band will be those giants!

 

Elizabeth Cornish can be seen at Leicesters SimonSays Festival on the 27th July and at The Musician on the 19 August… and you just know in between these dates they’ll be playing somewhere. x

 

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©Copyright: theguywithastick.com2014. All rights reserved.

 

Elisabeth Cornish

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At theguywithastick.com we ask our people to write about how they feel about a band or artist, how they are moved and what they take away with them from a gig. We are not professional journalists and we reject, as much as possible, the requirement of professionals to ‘pigeon-hole’ everything and everyone. This is evident in the multitude of musical genres that purport to exist at the moment. If you constantly break everything down to its common denominator you limit yourselves, and, in the opinion of theguywithastick, you force artists to conform to that limited view, instead of enabling originality we stifle it! and then an artist, or in this case a band, comes along and sticks two fingers up to convention and with a swagger in their step and a wry grin on their faces, they set about ripping the guts out for the established ‘pigeon-holes’ and do what the hell they want… I give you The Brandy Thieves!!!

Listed as a four piece outfit, although they played as a five piece at the recent Western Park Festival, The Brandy Thieves, consisting of: Andrea Kenny, Cain Barriskill, Bernardo Mendes and Joe Carey, they play gypsy folk, in a punk rock manner, punctuated with ska… and they do it brilliantly!

Andrea’s mature, enigmatic, vocals start slow and clam enough but then she beats the crap out of you with fast guitar play and equally quick vocal hooks, aided and a betted by a rasping horn with bass and drums ensuring you can’t run off, and why would you want to? Their lyrics come across as joyful but they are drenched in social comment delivered in a rhythmic gypsy style, with two fingers in the air and smile on the face. Their energy is infectious, it’s simply impossible to stand still, you’ve got to move it… and then you’re hooked!!!

The Brandy Thieves are immense! They have won over audiences wherever they play and bit by bit they will take over the nation, the sooner the better!

So! would I pay good money to see The Brandy Thieves again, well it’s a no brainer… hell yes! However, there’s a gig I would love to see even more and that’s The Brandy Thieves on the same bill as Under A Banner, an electric folk rock band, reviewed by theguywithastick.com some months ago… I’m salivating at the thought!

Until that happens, theguywithastick.com have placed videos by both The Brandy Thieves and Under A Banner on the website along with tracks by both on the playlists under the ‘Feature’ tab.

The Brandy Thieves are playing Heather Music Festival on Friday 25 July and Leicesters SimonSays on Saturday 26 July

 

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©Copyright Theguywithastick.com2014. All rights reserved.

The Brandy Thieves

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There are some good bands playing the East Midlands at the moment, there are also some… shall we say… not so good! The Flying Kangaroo Alliance are in the shit-hot part of the range!

The Flying Kangaroo Alliance are a 4 piece alternative rock/punk band with influences of the 90’s ‘grunge’ scene. Band members, Meri Everitt – Vocals/Guitar, Ali Findlay – Guitar, Ivan Hunt – Drums (until the 5th July 2014) and Keeley Knight – Bass/Vocals, work well together. Keeley’s bass play and stage craft is great to hear and watch, Ali’s guitar play works well with Meri’s vocals and Ivan’s Drums are absolutely banging. All in all a very energetic bunch who demonstrate their craft as musicians and own every stage they play on. Clearly F.K.A are a band of note!

 

… but there’s much more to The Flying Kangaroo Alliance than your average rock band, much more indeed! The musicianship and stage-craft are good, but, what sets F.K.A apart from the rest are their challenging  lyrics and the voice of Meri Everitt!

F.K.A write and sing about life as it affects them, its not pretty, it’s not feel-good but it is honest, its born out of adversity and demands you take heed… not in a dictatorial way, but, as an older sister or brother; not ‘do as I say’ more ‘this is our experience of…’ The lyrics are challenging, but, they are very truthful…

 

When I first saw F.K.A I wondered if they were about effect or were they genuine? and, then, I had the privilege of seeing Meri Everitt doing a solo gig and it became plainly obvious that her music is about honesty… blunt, pure, honesty! If I didn’t get it before, I got it now!

Yes! we get it! what we, at theguywithastick.com, don’t get, is why The Flying Kangaroo Alliance aren’t playing a stage at Simon Says or Leicester Music Festival? We know Ivan the drummer has now departed, but, would he have stayed until after these gigs?

Meri Everitt will play at Simon Says and that in itself is worth going to see, but, not the band it would seem?

It beggars belief that a local band of such high caliber don’t get on a stage at two of the largest gigs to hit the East Midlands??? I simply don’t git it!!!

The Flying Kangaroo Alliance were made to play at big events and its a great loss, to both Simon Says and Leicester Music Festival, that F.K.A won’t be owning a stage at their events…it’s a real shame!

 

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Flying Kangaroo Alliance

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Simon Says

 

Simon Says… we’re back!

After the success of last year’s sell-out festival, Simon Says… returns to De Montfort Hall and Gardens.

Presented in partnership with three of Leicester’s most loved music venues, The Donkey, Firebug and The Musician, the festival is a celebration of local talent with some more nationally-recognised names complementing the line-up.

Headlining the weekend will be The South, featuring members of The Beautiful South and playing many of their original hits.

Alongside them will be new age reggae band By The Rivers, tipped as one of the “five future stars of the Pyramid Stage” by the BBC.

Building on last year’s success, this year the festival will have an expanded outdoor area with extra stage, a family area, more food stalls and real ale from event sponsor Hobgoblin.

With the perfect setting of De Montfort Hall’s beautiful gardens as well as the iconic hall itself, Simon Says… is the perfect city centre festival with a rural feel. Come and join us for the weekend.
Saturday 26 July

BY THE RIVERS
THE DT’S
VIBRONICS
DANNY & THE CHAMPIONS OF THE WORLD
DAWSON SMITH & THE DISSENTERS
JOHN BUTLER

ASH MAMMAL
BRANDY THIEVES, THE
CALDER
CLAIRE SCHOFIELD
DAN WRIGHT
DAYDREAM CLUB, THE
DELLA GRANTS, THE
FALLERS
FALLOWS, THE
GRACE AND THE MAGIC ROOTS
GUY JONES
HELL’S ADDICTION
HUMDRUM
JINNWOO
OUT OF KARMA
JOSH KEMP
JUNIORS
KENNY WILSON
KGB JAZZ
KITTENETTES, THE
LUCY DAVIES-KUMADIRO
MARTIN LUKE BROWN
MERI EVERITT
OVAL IRIS
PAUL MCCLURE
POLLY
PRASH GOR
RESIN
SI CLANCY WITH MARTHA BEAN
SLOW MOTION
SPEAKING IN ITALICS
STRANGLER FIGS
SUPEREVOLVER
WEALLFALLSILENT
WEIKIE
Sunday 27 July

THE SOUTH
KINGSIXZE
PRESSURE TENANTS
SKINNY LISTER
SALLY BARKER
SCOTT MATTHEWS
DRUGSTORE COWBOYS

BRASSICK BEARS
CHRIS CONWAY
CIGAR BOX PERFORMERS
DAVID WYATT
ELIZABETH CORNISH
FRANK JOHNSON
GAVIN SWEENEY
JACK LONDON
JAMES BYRON
JOHN THE SINGER
JONNY HALIFAX & THE HOWLING TRUTH
KEITH BUTLER
KRISTYNA MYLES
LES HAYDEN
MARK HARRISON
MARKUS REEVES
MATT HENSHAW
MIRACULOUS MULE
NATIVE, THE
NFQ
NO MANS HEATH
PREACHER AND THE BEAR
RUBY DOOS, THE
SAM IDWAL
SEAN GRANT AND THE WOLFGANG
SIOBHAN MAZZEI
SOLD SEPARATELY
STEVE CARTWRIGHT
STEVIE JONES & THE WILDFIRES
TAPESTRY
TRUCKSTOP HONEYMOON

 

DMH, The Donkey, Firebug & The Musician present

 

Original courtsey of SimonSays

Simon Says Simon Says… we’re back!

The Della Grants

 

The Della Grants have undergone something of a transformation since they started back in 2000, albeit in a different guise as a covers band. Today the Della Grants have found their soul… and its colour is blues!!!

 

A 4 piece outfit, as blues as they come, comprising of Max Manning and Tom Best on guitar, harmonica and vocals respectively and Andy Boulton on bass, with Tom Walker on drums. The Della Grants have built-up something of a reputation as being the ones to watch and I can see why!

 

With cracking tracks like: ‘Truth Don’t Cost a Penny’ and ‘Weaker Man’ (which we have included in our new playlist on the ‘features’ tab at theguywithastick.com) the Della Grants introduce a new generation to the beauty of RnB and American blues, not so much re-inventing the genre as moving it forward and enjoying the journey as they go, something for which they have gained some important and influential friends with positive reviews from:

Blues Review (USA) – “Spectacular guitar based Blues/Rock.”

Blues Rock Review (USA) – “Get ready for The Della Grants 9/10”

and the likes of Mark Stanway, who played organ (I’m a sucker for a Hammond organ!!!) on their studio recording of ‘Keeping Me Away From You’. Mark Stanway has played with the likes of Jeff Beck Robert Plant and Manfred Mann’s Earth Band, so something of a coup for The Della Grants, add to this to opening for Dr Feelgood at the Musician in Leicester, and its not bad at all for the C.V. at all!

I look forward to seeing them again at SimonSays in July.

RJG

 

© copyright: TheGuyWithaStick.com2014© All rights reserved.

 

 

Beneath The Lights

 

Fresh from Glastonbudget 2014, Beneath the Lights are a 4 piece, alternative rock band with an emphasis on ROCK.

A young bunch of lads but don’t let that fool you, theses guys have a lot of experience, playing across the region in small venues and on the larger stage such as ‘Glastonbudget’, which they have played 3 times (or is it 4 now? I’m sure they’ll correct me!!!). Finalists in the OBS, held at the Musician in Leicester, Beneath the Lights are winning people over wherever they play (Ryan at TheGuyWithaStick.com is raving about them… I think he likes!!!). Energetic guitar play with thumping rock beats and dual vocals, these guys ouse charisma as they bang out covers along with intelligently thought-out originals such as ‘Broken Town’ and ‘Moving On’. The guys tell me they ‘love playing live’, a cynic would say ‘they all say that don’t they’… but wait! take a look at their gig list! They are just as comfortable playing at a local social club as they are playing the festivals and it shows in their stage presence and rapport with the crowed.

 

So, Beneath the Lights are hard working, charismatic, talented and energetic what more can I say?… I know, going places, these guys are going places.. truly! I will be very surprised if the ‘unsigned’ label isn’t changed sometime in the foreseeable future. Their hard work will pay off in the end and we wish them well with it!

 

JSB

© copyright: TheGuyWithaStick.com© All rights reserved.

 

 

 

 

Strangler Figs

 

I have talked about these guy before. I told you how refreshing their style of play is, I’ve said how good they are musically and I’ve talked about Joe Pickering’s voice, yet I feel the need to go further.

Some will know that I’m a sucker for the Hammond organ, a key board is good, if it’s played well, but a Hammond organ… well that’s something else. The Strangler Figs don’t have a Hammond organ but you wouldn’t know it. The way Freddie Pickering uses the keyboard gives the strong impression that he has a Hammond organ hidden away somewhere, up his sleeve or in a different dimension, just out of sight of the rest of us… I don’t know where but I’m sure it’s there… somewhere! You can hear it running through every song complementing Joe’s voice and guitar play and answering the call of the bass line.

Now when I say ‘Bass line’ I don’t want you to get the wrong impression. Sometimes the drums can drowned out the Bass but this is not the case for the Strangler Figs. James Lyons, who, incidental is as mad as a bag of spanners, bangs out the beat with vigour but intelligently, he knows his stuff and does it very well indeed. Then there’s the Bass itself. Well, when I say ‘Bass’ I mean double Bass not bass guitar. It’s often difficult on stage to keep instruments in tune, this is particularly the case for acoustic instruments, so imagine how difficult it must be to keep a double bass in tune for a full set. Well that’s just what you get from Joel Hanson’s double bass, impressive if not ever so slightly barking!

All of this is brought together by the backing vocals of Rosie May Price who is most certainly not there to be part of the furniture but an integral part of the line-up and Joe’s unique vocal range and intellectually mature lyrics adds layers that simply isn’t available to other groups.

If you’ve not yet seen the Strangler Figs then get to a gig, they are playing at The Shed this Friday, Western Park in June and SimonSays in July, so there’s ample chance… no excuses!