Category Archives: News

@MoseleyFolk Festival Headliners Goodnight Lenin to release debut single on Static Caravan @sttccrvn

by Charlotte Payne

Birmingham boys Goodnight Lenin have only been at it a year or so but they caught the eye of the Moseley Folk team back in December after releasing a YouTube video of a simple acoustic performance in which they sat perched on the counter tops of their kitchen. In the last eight months or so they have supported a host of top folk and not so folk acts including First Aid Kit, Features and Darwin Deez.

On the 6th August they will be releasing their debut single ‘Crook in the Creek’ on local label Static Caravan. 500 limited edition 7 inch singles will be available featuring beautiful folk artwork by Clare Rojas and it will also be available to download via iTunes.

'Crook in The Creek' out 6th August

Liam and Matt from the band were kind enough to answer a few questions and here are the answers we got:

First things first, what’s the reasoning behind the name Goodnight Lenin? What’s the association with the film ‘Goodbye Lenin’?

Liam – “We did not want to be another generic ‘The’ band. The band loves the film, its imagery, and the mise-en-scene. We were slightly worried about the communist connotations of ‘Lenin’ but we don’t think people have taken too much notice of that really.”

When you’re on stage you often talk about your love of travel (or John does at least); how come you have all ended up back in Birmingham?

Matt – “It’s not a case of ending up back in Birmingham. We’ve chosen to be here. We have a lot of pride in our hometown and are determined to play our part in putting Birmingham back on the map, in the musical sense.”

If you could fly off tomorrow where would you go, and why?

Matt – “South America is a place we would jump at the chance to visit. It would be an unforgettable experience to tour there, taking in the major capitals like Bogota, Rio, Buenos Aires, Santiago etc but also getting off the beaten track and exploring places like Cartagena and Mendoza. There’s something mesmerising about the continent and the people.”

What music did you grow up listening to and how has this influenced your sound?

Liam – “We grew up listening to a lot of 60’s music, mainly through our parents with the likes of The Beatles, The Faces, Hollies, The Zombies, and Simon and Garfunkel. I also think 90’s Brit guitar music was still fresh when we were young and if it wasn’t for Noel Gallagher I personally would not have picked up a guitar.”

If you could cover any song, what would it be, and why?

Matt – “There are a whole range of songs we would love to cover but above all else ‘Changing of the Guards’ by Dylan is a track we always seem to be drawn to whether it be rehearsing in the lock up or driving to a gig listening to music. At over six minutes long it would be audacious to say the least but if we could nail it, it would be spectacular. That or B*Witched’s ‘C’est La Vie’. It’s a toughy.”

Are there any other bands or records you’ve encountered recently that you think people should know about?

Liam – “As well as Bob Dylan’s 70’s live bootlegs such as ‘Rolling Thunder Revue’, we’re big fans of First Aid Kit with their fantastic harmonies, The Crookes from Sheffield, and a bit closer to home the likes of Boat To Row. Spoken word artist Jodi Ann Bickley is also someone we have a lot of respect for and are very excited to see her and Boat To Row at our debut single launch on August 6th (at The Hare and Hounds).

“Yes that’s a plug!”

Over the rest of the year what are you looking forward to most?

Liam – “It has to be our festival dates. The big one is obviously headlining the Lunar Stage at Moseley Folk Festival before Donovan – it’s something we’ve been working towards for a long time now and it’s personally very rewarding for us to be playing before someone who has had a  massive influence on our music. We can’t wait to see him live. It will also be a nice moment for our family and friends who have got behind us from the outset so they can see how their support has helped us progress. Other festivals we’re really looking forward to are Bestival on the Isle of Wight and Shambala.”

Why should people listen to you if they haven’t already?

Matt – “Because Stone Cold said so.”

What was your favourite toy as a child?

Liam – “I had the Bat Mobile which was the dog’s bollocks. You could fire rockets out of it. Amazing.”

What TV programme do you wish they still made or aired?

Matt – “‘Where on Earth is Carmen Sandiego?’ purely for the theme tune. Superb.”

If you could travel back in time and meet yourself what would you talk about or do?

Matt – “I think I’d most likely try and come up with some elaborate criminal master plan that involves me always having a stone cold alibi elsewhere. I’d plunder millions. On an unrelated note, the question for some reason reminds me of Bernard’s Watch, the ITV children’s programme where Bernard finds a stopwatch at the end of a rainbow that can stop time. I always detested the little clown as he used it for purely boring purposes like sleeping in late on school days or at his most extreme cheating on an exam. I’d like to think if I had Bernard’s watch I would pillage and steal till my heart was content. Probably wouldn’t make parentally friendly children’s telly mind.”

“I think Hermione Granger had a similar device that was vastly superior to Bernard’s.”

Do you have a lucky charm? If so, what is it?

Liam – “John Joe’s shirt. Whenever he wears it we seem to play well. He always wears it.

Which fictional character would you like to have in the band, and why?

Matt – “Prince… What, Prince is real????”

As it’s festival season, if you had your own festival who would headline, and why?

Liam – “We would take Bob Dylan and his band from the ’75 ‘Desire’ period. Truly amazing. Neil Young would support and Chris Moyles would compere the festival but only so he could be hung, drawn, and quartered on stage post Dylan’s performance.”

You can catch Goodnight Lenin’s Official Single Launch Party at the Hare & Hounds in Kings Heath, Birmingham on Friday 6th August. Support will be provided by Boat to Row, The Young Runaways and Jodi Ann Bickley. This is Moseley Folk Festival’s Lunar Society offering for August and so advance tickets can be purchased for £5.00 + booking fee from here.

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@Counteract Magazine Presents… @SeaFieldsUK, @TheScholars and @SpeechFewapy DJs @HareAndHounds

The relentless Richard Franks is promoting the first Counteract Magazine showcase at The Hare on Hounds featuring Sea Fields and The Scholars with tunes from the Speech Fewapy rascals on Thursday 15th July.

Tickets are just £2 advance from Ticket Sellers here. Those who attend this showcase will get money off August 12th’s showcase featuring the hotly tipped Minnaars and the ferocious Hold Your Horse Is.

Please be aware that Cake will be available at this event. Sounds like a lot of fun doesn’t it? If you want to be part of the summer of death.

Go to the newly refurbished http://counteract-magazine.com/for the latest music news and reviews.

Off The Cuff @TheFlapperBrum Tickets On Sale

Off The Cuff Festival 23-25 July

Tickets for the three day Off The Cuff Festival at The Flapper are now available form www.wegottickets.com.

With the line up boasting of the likes of 35 Seconds, Pulled Apart by Horses, Dead Lights, Tubelord, Adebisi Shank, Chapel Club, Malpas, Boat to Row , &U&I – the new band from the remnants of Blakfish and a debut show from the much talked about Victories at Sea, the event promises to be outstanding value for money at only £18 for a three day ticket.

For more information, got to www.offthecuffbirmingham.co.uk

Ben Calvert, Creature of Simplicity – Video in Production

Post / Anti-Folk friend of Blue Whale Studios, Ben Calvert is currently working with illustrator Louise Wright on a video for ‘The Creatures of Simplicity’.

Still from 'The Creatures of Simplicity'

The video, accompanying the single taken from The Broken Family Daysaver, according to Ben; “tells the story of a mis-demeanor in a wooded area.”

More info can be found at the Bohemian Jukebox blog here.

As well as stirring up a grand old hoo ha about Putting A Price on Art, Ben recently popped into Blue Whale to record and film a few tracks –

More of this sort of thing can be found on Blue Whale TV here.

The Best Band of the Noughties, 35 Seconds, Return @ThisisTmrw 12th July

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The greatest Birmingham band of the last decade as voted for by readers of The Blue Whale Blog return to play at The Hare and Hounds for This is Tomorrow on 12th July.

35 Seconds support the hotly tipped Toro Y Moi with help from Of Pandas and People featuring ex members of Hero Machine, Alex ‘The King Singh’ McIntyre and Tom ‘Grease Boy’ Rees.

A free 35 Seconds Mix CD is available to the first 30 people through the door.

More info can be found on Facebook here.

OxjamBrum @ Urban Coffee, Birmingham Friday 25th June

Urban Coffee will be hosting free event on behalf of OxjamBrum on Friday 25th June.

The music will be performed on the mezzanine floor with acoustic acts confirmed as:

5:15 – 5:45 – Alex Moir
6:00 – 6:30 – Eliza Little
6:45 – 7:15 – Marlem
7:30 – 8:00 – Tom Peel

The cafe will be promoting their cofftails which are alcoholic iced coffee drinks.

The chaps from INKwell will be there to do some live screen printing onto t-shirts, cloth bags etc.  They have created exclusive new designs just for OxjamBrum.  Bring your own garment or there will be some available on the day.

GotSeeN will be live streaming the show live on their site.

This event is also supported by Mostly Jazz who have donated a pair of tickets for their festival at Moseley Park the following weekend.  You can enter this FREE prize draw at the event.

Brave or Invincible Debut Mixtape to Feature Blue Whale Artists @boirecords

Songs by Jamie Clayton and Savant recorded at Blue Whale Studios are to be featured on the debut mixtape on Birmingham’s Brave or Invincible Records. Released on cassette, each with its own individual artwork and a free download code, the mixtape will feature a number of up and coming artists from around the UK including Tiny Cinema, Katerwaul, There Will Be Fireworks and Minion TV amongst others.

Callum Joynes and Nick Moreton from the label give the Blue Whale Blog the lowdown on the pending release –

I see that 100% of the Birmingham based artists on the mixtape have recorded their tunes at Blue Whale. Is this because there is LITERALLY NO WHERE ELSE IN THE CITY worth recording at?

“We selected the Birmingham artists really based on the music. Jamie Clayton has played with our artist Tiny Cinema several times in the past and we love his stuff. Purely coincidence really…but Andy did recommend Savant. And the recordings do all sound great.”

How did you go about picking the artists? Have you worked with any of them before or did you purely just hear the tune sand decide to include them on the mix tape?

“We basically picked the artists based on music we’ve been listening to and finding out about anyway. We’re all big music fans and so it really hasn’t been too hard to find some really good bands and really good songs.”

Savant to be featured on BOI Mixtape Vol. 1

Tape players are a thing of the past, my 18 year old nephew hasn’t even heard of cassettes- why choose an extinct format when the shiny new fangled internet can do wondrous things?

“The new fangled internet is great for music, the mp3 is so convenient, and you can fit literally millions of songs on an mp3 player literally the size of a peanut. Literally.

“But there is still a great need and want for an interesting and desirable physical product. This is a need that the CD does not fulfil, but we believe that a cassette tape can. We have a strong belief that cassette tapes are hugely culturally important in musical history, and people recognise that significance and want to celebrate it.

BOI Mixtape artwork by Ben Ricketts

“The tapes are limited to 100, will have unique handmade artwork by brilliant artists and designers and each one will be 100% individual. This project is cool as fuck, and we are so excited about it.

“Tell me now you won’t buy one.”

The BOI Mixtape Vol. 1 will be released on 19th July and will be available from BOIRecords.co.uk