MIMR Band Chat: Snooker Season

One of the acts that have grabbed our attention during these dark times are lo-fi post-punk act Snooker Season who’s new EP expresses their desires and hobbies in equal measure.

We spoke to the band about playing live, influences and going to Barbados.



MIMR: Thrilled to have you on the blog, how has 2020 been for the band so far and with everyone a bit up in the air at the moment, what can you plan for the future?



SS: Thanks for having us! Right now we’re getting our heads down, writing and recording tracks. Spontaneously improvising songs is always fun but it’s great to really nail stuff down. Normally it happens at the last rehearsal before a gig, with the terror of public approval hovering over us.   We’ve just released our new EP and work is already well under well for a full length album. Expect songs about ring road traffic, medical professionals and empty pubs very soon.


MIMR: What would you say is the best description of your sound and what are your main influences?


SS: A nice cheap mash up of all your post punk favourites. We’re not super determined to ape something obscure like the sound of early Kleenex demos or whatever. We‘re into Talking Heads, The Fall, Wire. Hip hop comes into the drums and basslines. We like a lo-fi, live sound to the recordings rather than ultra-crisp and polished.  Lyrically it’s much more diverse. Don’t tell anyone but I actually quite like Randy Newman.


MIMR: Tell us all about the new EP ‘The American Office’ how did it come about and were they’re any challenges faced in its production?


SS: The American Office and Airport are some of the earliest songs we wrote as a group and have been a jumping off point for what came later. There’s a hard edge to the music and humour to the lyrics. The main challenge was probably recording everything five feet from a death metal band, with only a paper thin wall between us. We originally recorded a version of the EP in a studio, but it wasn’t quite right for us, so we did it again ourselves in our rehearsal space. Learning to record and mix took a bit of effort but the results were much closer to what we want. You can’t buy the ambience of someone screaming about Satan under the sound of your drums. 



MIMR: One of the tracks on the record is called ‘Euromillions’ and we all would love to be the lucky one to win the jackpot one day. What would you be your 1st purchase if you got lucky?


SS: I feel like that moment is a real moral crossroads in your life. Is it gonna be straight to Barbados with all your friends and family beaming beside you? Or cocaine and sex workers in a five star hotel? The song is definitely about someone who takes the low road, and who can blame him.  In reality my actual first purchase would probably be four cold cans of Stella from the shop downstairs. The best a man can get.



MIMR: Like everyone at the moment, i’m itching to see live music again, what’s the one thing you miss about playing live and what venues are your favourite ones to play or to simply hangout in? 



SS: You never feel more like a gang than when you play live. Five men and three amps in a small car, its bliss. And it’s great to let your mates hear what you’ve been wasting all your time on. We love playing in the northern quarter. Aatma and Band on the Wall have probably been our best gigs. It would be great to venture further afield in future though. I love it when people play in weird or unexpected venues. The Fall in Manchester Cathedral has gotta be the gold standard for me.




MIMR: Thanks for dropping by for a chat, we wish you well for the rest of the year. How can people follow you on social media?



SS: Nice one.

You can find us on
Instagram (https://www.instagram.com/snookerseason) and Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/SnookerSeasonBand).


The EP is up on Bandcamp (https://snookerseason.bandcamp.com) and you can search for it on Spotify, Apple Music etc.

MIMR Band Chat: Dense

Hailing from Leeds, the 1st appearance on the blog for explosive garage-rock trio Dense who’s new EP ‘Abjection’ has created a rip-rawing buzz at MIMR.

We chatted about the record, dealing with the lockdown and socialising at gigs



MIMR: Thrilled to have another new band to the blog, hey hope your well. Who are Dense and what’s the best description you’ve had in regards to your sound?


Dense: Thanks for having us, Griff. DENSE is a garage-punk rock 3-piece from Leeds. We started making music at the start of 2017 and have taken our time in playing around with our sound to get to the stage we are at today. In the past we have acquired some great quotes from the likes of Backseat Mafia dubbing us ‘a whole new meaning to the term ‘garage rock”, which is a particularly cool one for us personally as we really try to make our music as unique as possible, whilst understanding the world of genre ‘umbrellas’.

At a selection panel ast year, Phil Taggart from BBC Radio 1 described our single ‘Fever Dream’ as ‘a punishment beating but one he had asked for’, which is definitely one of the more interesting descriptions we have had in the past, surrounded by a fair few comments that we are ‘just noisy’!



MIMR: Been enjoying the new record immensely, it’s a roaring effort. Tell us all about the record and did the lockdown situation have any major effect on it’s production?


Dense: Thanks very much, we really appreciate that! We had been sitting on those songs for quite a while having played them all a fair bit live, and we finally gathered the funds to record them in January with Adam Bairstow, producer and frontman of ‘Brooders’. After a gruelling, coffee-fuelled 5 days we managed to track it all and originally had it set for release in May. As you know, that wasn’t the best month to be dropping new music so decided to push it back until end of August, so we have been chomping at the bit to get the songs out there and are really glad that they finally are!




MIMR: MIMR have always recognised Leeds as a major hub for new music having featured many bands from the city over recent times. Of course the landscape for bands has greatly altered lately due to Covid but do you agree that the music scene will still thrive and what venues are you looking forward to visiting again?


Dense: Leeds is an amazing place for music and feel very lucky to have started our journey there together. As for Leeds and every other city around the UK, this time will almost certainly alter the make-up and atmosphere of each scene and we only hope that artists still feel they are able to pick up where they left off in the same way that we are hoping to. Our last two gigs in Leeds before lockdown were at Brudenell Social Club and Belgrave Music Hall, and we are very privileged to have stages like that to play in the city as they are both incredible venues. Two of us actually now live in Manchester and having played the likes of Big Hands and YES Basement in the past, we are really excited to get properly stuck into the Manchester scene! Although it’s a pretty awful time right now, we have every faith that independent bands can pick themselves up and show a bit of DIY resilience which has been so prevalent and kind to us as a band in our brief timespan.


MIMR: During this period of isolation and not being able to play music, what have you been up to away from music to keep yourselves sane?

Dense: It’s a strange one because we can’t tell whether these last few months have dragged or flown past, and we have all been up to pretty different stuff. Although we haven’t been able to play live, we have collectively been pretty busy organising the EP campaign, as we do all of that stuff ourselves in-house, which has been a blessing really to be able to keep that focus on the band. We like to write together in the room usually so that has been a challenge, but we have also been exercising our creativity with other side or solo projects which has been fun. Having all ‘lockdown’ed in different places around the country, it’s been strange not seeing each other for as long as we have, yet still speaking every day! So in that respect we have been busy, but definitely couldn’t say we have remained sane…..!



MIMR: So we hope that live music can return sooner rather later and we’re already seeing some social distanced events taking place. What’s the one thing about playing live you miss?



Dense: We always have a great time on stage and feel most comfortable as a band when we are doing that, so having such a vital core of what we do taken away has been really strange for us and we have had to adapt our EP campaign to deal with that as we would have been touring the record relentlessly.

We had a tour in the works with Brooders and Death Cult Electric which we were so excited for and really hope we can sort something with those guys soon as they are both awesome bands. But apart from the obvious, I think we are all really missing the social side of gigging; talking to people before and after each show and getting to know people in a mutually adored environment which has been impossible to come by since March. Also, after writing what we consider to be a pretty raw and live EP, we are itching to play it properly on stage and really hope that time will come very soon!


MIMR: Thanks for chatting to us on the blog, wish you well for rest of the year. How can people follow you on social media? 


Dense: Thanks very much again for chatting to us. Links to all we are up to are below, hopefully see you all really soon!

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/denseband

Instagram: www.instagram.com/denseband

Twitter: www.twitter.com/denseband

Bandcamp: https://dense.bandcamp.com/

Soundcloud: www.soundcloud.com/denseband

MIMR Review: Geisterhaus ‘The Garden’

In these dark and gloomy times, it’s a very warm and welcoming return to the blog to the ecentric, electro-punk stylings of geisterhaus with brand new single ‘The Garden’ (released 7th Sept) digging deep into his rich repertoire of sonic-like sounds.

Thom breaks out the shackles with this track ringing in your ears from the get-go with piercing riffs, ferocious, cosmic beats and hard-hitting lyrics that resonate with us all in regards to the current predicament we find ourselves in.

The accompanying video displays Thom flambuoyant delivery, rocking out in his garden (one of the few places that you can do that currently, pubs just ain’t fun) and with the appearance of ‘pig gods’ a bit hard not to give you the creepies.

Let’s hope when all this covid nonsense blows over that we can see Thom back in action on stage where he struts his stuff, we all miss the blaring sounds in our eardrums at gigs and ‘The Garden’ will be a track worth waiting for.

MIMR Band Chat: Stepford Wives

Blistering their way onto to the blog during the lockdown period, Stepford Wives display their raucous, power-punch post-punk stylings for us all to enjoy with latest single ‘All On Me’ becoming one of our favourite tracks of the year so far.


We spoke to the Saddleworth quartet about influences, earliest musical memories and tangy wine gums!


MIMR: Great to have you on the blog, how did the band come about and what would you say influences you the most in creating your sound?  


SW: Thank you for having us on the blog 😊 Like many bands, we met at secondary school. However, Niklos was a Media teacher and Rowan (bass) and Jaz (drums) pupils! In the summer of 2018, when the two teenagers left school, the three piece started jamming together. They soon bonded over a mutual love of blunt, loud, quirky guitar based music. Within three months word was put out into the local community that a new band had a vacant slot for a sensitive, articulate, bespectacled lead guitarist. Completely fitting the bill, Dom walked into the garage rehearsal room and promptly decided it wasn’t for him!! We plied him with alcohol and the promise of unlimited tangy wine gums. The deal was sealed. Stepford Wives was born.

Influences range from Johnny Greenwood, the Clash, Periphery, Pixies, life, Crass, drum n bass, Sonic Youth, Peter Tosh, the kitchen sink of literature, love, war, death.  

 

MIMR: Needless to say this year so far has been unlike any other, how have you coped with the drastic changes that have occurred and what’s the latest with the band?  



SW: Well all our headline gigs were cancelled. Our slot on Sky TV Soccer AM was cancelled. Our single All ON ME was released in March virtually into lockdown. Early on it didn’t look good.  

THEN – We started sharing ideas over our WhatsApp group. Song writing became more prolific. We practiced hard on our individual instruments. Our gigs have slowly been rescheduled to  a more Covid realistic time.  

Soccer AM honoured their word and gave us a slot on their last programme of the season – and put us straight on to their best of season playlist.  

Just in the last few weeks we have had interviews with Metro news, all local press, punk legend John Robb over Zoom for Underground England and Louder than War, and a BBC Radio Manchester daytime slot.  

On 22 August we played a gig!! Outdoors at the MMTV Festival in manchester. Not even the Manchester weather spoiled the joyous celebration of live music.

If anything, we are emerging from the lockdown in a stronger position mentally and physically than before, which may sound a bit mad!  



MIMR: What’s your earliest musical memory?   


Rowan – sister teacher me how to play the piano when I was 6. She didn’t know how to play, but she helped me learn from a book.  

Dom – flicking through my dad’s albums – I was entranced by a Buddy holly sleeve for some reason. (Dom looks like a cross between Elvis Costello and Buddy Holly 😊 )  

Jaz – my dad teaching me how to play the guitar at the age of 8, which is probably why I am the drummer.  

Niklos – Christmas at Uncle John’s house about 8 or 9 with my dad and uncle on acoustics singing Beatles, Elvis and Simon and Garfunkel songs. Magical times.      



MIMR: When gigs do return, what venues are your favourite to play  at again?  


SW: We love small, intimate sweaty – the exact breeding ground for you know what… If they manage to sort out virus friendly gigging, we would love to play Night people again in Manchester, the Castle, the Eagle, Deaf Institute, Gorilla, the Peer Hat.   Moving further afield, which we have not had chance to do yet, we want to play the equivalent venues of the above in towns and cities all over the UK and Europe. Bring it fucking on.  


MIMR: Despite the current situation the manchester music scene is still thriving, what other bands out there do you admire?  


SW: Other bands we have connected with so far are Liines, Narrow Margin, Dirty Laces, Scuttlers, C33s, ist ist and electronic artists like Antagonist  



MIMR: Thanks for talking to us, wish you well for rest if year. How can people follow you on social media.  



SW: Instagram – stepfordwivesband

Snapchat – stepford_wives

Facebook – @stepfordwivesband

Twitter –  @stepfordwivesuk  

If you read this, thank you for your time.

Stepford Wives

MIMR Review: Jessica Luise ‘Television Mister’

Released today (Aug 20th) the latest track to whistle it’s way into our mind is the new single by singer-songwriter Jessica Luise one of the many talented acts to have been picked up by our good friends over at Petty Management.

Television Mister’ is her 2nd official single and her 1st with a full band allowing her to venture away from her indie-folk style and break out into a classic indie-rock sound (The Big Moon, Courtney Barnett, Fleetwood Mac) that is instantly pleasing to your ears.

Hailing from Merseyside but now a resident of Manchester, Jessica bright and breezy vocals are a real breath fresh of air and the track floats along with great vigor thoroughout, certainly her biggest single to date ensuring that Jessica Luise has every chance to be a leading light on the scene for a long time.

Here’s the track:

MIMR Band Chat: Sauce

With their bouncy, vibrant rock n roll sound whistling to your ears, Manchester’s power quartet Sauce are ready to spice up your life and shake you out of the doom and gloom we currently face.

We spoke to the band about lockdown, influences and mad haircuts.



MIMR: Great to have you on the blog, who are Sauce and what are your main influences when creating your sound?  


Sauce: Our influences are normally people in our lives, going out on the piss and wanting some good in the world. We love proper guitar bands – Pink Floyd, Queen, Oasis, The Beatles, Black Sabbath and Arctic Monkeys would probably be a good summary of everything that goes into Sauce.  


MIMR: We have been thoroughly enjoying your recent single and accompanying video too, tell us about the track and are they’re any other releases planned for this year?  


Sauce: You know what – at the moment I have no clue at all whether we’ll be releasing anything else yet. We’re in the early stages of recording our own stuff, but I doubt that’s gonna be release quality for a while yet. Basically at the moment, the aim is to write shit loads of tunes, record them as demos and see where that takes us.   



MIMR: It’s tough times for any band in the industry currently, how has the virus affected your immediate plans as a band?  


Sauce: We can’t think about any level of decent gigs which is the fucking worst thing of all – we just want to be at a stage where we can play in front of a crowd of people having it. It’s one thing writing some big tunes, but shite if you’ve no one to play them to. The virus has fucked everyone over so we’re certainly not gonna complain too much though. The only thing we can do is be proactive as we can and get our teeth stuck into something away from gigs.  



MIMR: Personally how has the lockdown been for you all and in your spare time what activities have you done?  


Sauce: The most mad thing was George shaving his hair off earlier on in lockdown, fuck knows when now. He did it on Facebook live, and his Mum’s a hairdresser so she took care of it. Absolutely class, and raised a big chunk of money for the NHS too. 
https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=683913022421163&external_log_id=80ed55c29f4611e88a35fd1b9d4368cd&q=george%20stead  In all honesty, the lockdown and no band practise was shite, we caught up a lot though on the virtual meet and just kept positive.  





MIMR: I have to ask this, with your band name being so, what is your favourite sauce?  



Sauce: We had to rank Sauces once on a radio show earlier this year, and I’m pretty sure Siracha came out on top, mayo was up there and I think Ketchup finished at the bottom – someone had to though. I think we can mostly agree that ketchup is sweet with a chippy / on a chip butty. Make of that what you will.  




MIMR: With the thought of live music returning any time soon still appearing to be a while away, what venues have you enjoyed and which ones do you miss hanging out in?  


Sauce: YES is a top venue, we played there last December. That was the first place I went to for a crispy pint once the pubs reopened so I guess I must have missed YES the most. It feels like so fucking long since I went to a gig or we played one. I miss all the venues to be fair. I’d play anywhere tonight if we could.   


MIMR: Thanks for chatting to us, where can people follow you on social media?



Spotify – https://open.spotify.com/artist/3p0p4PMmycMiOTcZxGAANv?si=5FdMpi5aSrapXifa322vQw 

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/bandsauce/ 

Twitter – https://twitter.com/sauce_band 

Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/sauce_band_/ 

Soundcloud – https://soundcloud.com/sauce-204939947

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lBsEOJ9yzWw

MIMR Band Chat: Yard Act

Emerging as one of best new bands around, rock outfit Yard Act from Leeds with their brand of orchestral post-punk goodness are ready to bring their jaunty sound to the masses

They spoke to us about their beginnings, house renovation and garden parties


MIMR: Thrilled to have you on the blog, tell us a brief introduction about the band and how you decided upon your musical direction and style?


YA: We started in January 2020 and managed 3 gigs before lockdown. All we agreed on in regards to direction and style was that the song comes first. 

MIMR: ‘Fixer Upper’ has become one of MIMR favourite tracks this year so far and it’s totally relatable, we all know ‘a Graham’. Are you happy with how the release was recieved and if you could do up your dream home what would be 3 essential work that would have to take place?


YA: I would have two of everything, new, no old shite and a walk in freezer so I can store more of the dead for longer.



MIMR: Lockdown has been a strange time for everyone in the industry, how have you coped as a band during this time and what plans do you have for rest of the year?


YA: We’ve mainly just drank lager in each other’s gardens, and written about 40 demos in the computer. We’re just taking this year as it comes. 

MIMR: Live music including the festival season have been practically wiped out by the virus, what’s the one thing you miss about live shows?


YA: When gigs return, I will never skip the support act ever again.


MIMR: Being stuck in the house day upon day can be a tiring slog, what acts of pleasure have you found to help pass the time away from music?

YA: Existing in the moment.



MIMR: Great to have you on the blog, how can people follow you guys on social media?


YA: Thanks for having us, if you want to find us on the internet, we aren’t hard to find 


Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/YardActBand/

Have MIMR got news for you

In a brand new feature on the blog we round up the latest goings on featuring some of MIMR favourite acts as they navigate their ways through the difficult musical terrain that look set to grip the music scene for a while longer yet.

Firstly, our good friends Campfire Social emerge from the lockdown with a brand new single released today titled ‘ Awake in the Wake of a Wave’ which is another glorious slice of indie-pop which sparkles and glistens brightly. Bubbly and brisk harmonies are met with poignant and to the heart vocals that symbolize the joyful nature of their enchanting sound.

Next up we have the latest news from Manchester dream pop quartet Diving Station with their well crafted and blissful new single ‘Joanna’ released 11th September.

Building on the success of 2018 fantastic ‘Feather Mouth’ EP as well as the captivating singles ‘Honey Bee’ and ‘Film’ from last year, the 4 piece now embark on the latest steps of their journey culminating in the upcoming new EP ‘June Damp’ which is something MIMR will be very excited about.

Having already gained acclaim from the likes of Guy Garvey and Steve Lamacq amongst others, Diving Station have their sights set in the clouds, this EP is going to be special.

Alt-Indie act Thrillhouse now enter the fray with their new track ‘2045’ released 28th August whisking it’s way into your brain with purposeful intent, needing your urgent attention.

The Brighton Chaps wowed up with previous singles including ‘Lesser’ and now their latest effort is already ringing in our ears.

Taking inspiration from Bowie, Talking Heads and the like, the track meanders along with a blend of uplifting, ambient sounds and a effervescent soundtrack which is essential to your well being.

Finally i’d just like to take a minute to mention the super work that Tim Burgess (Charlatans) has been doing with his Listening Parties via Twitter. With over 350 records featured over the course of the last few months, Tim has brought people together during these troubling times to celebrate in the perfect way, listening to music in all it’s forms and putting a smile on people’s faces, a pat on the back to one of my favourite artists from back when i was in school listening to The Charlatans on my cassette player right through to the modern day

You can check the upcoming schedule and delve into the archive on his website here:

https://timstwitterlisteningparty.com/

MIMR Review: The Goa Express ‘Be My Friend’

With a first appearance on MIMR, garage-rock 5 piece The Goa Express brightly illuminate with their crushing no-nonsense noise which grips you to the very core.

Grumbling under the radar of the northern towns for a little while, they set their sails with this latest track released earlier this month firmly catapulting them into our lives. With razor-sharp, chaotic riffs, turbulent beats and bellowing vocals that instantly take you in under there inviting wing and is a pleasing distraction from the current state the world is in.

Be there friend and check out the track here:

MIMR Band Chat: Wood Ewe



Taking his dreamy alt-pop sound and creative a soundscape that is both engrossing and enlightening is equal measure, the Wood Ewe project created by Iain Henderson has firmly become one of MIMR more interesting finds of recent times. We spoke to Iain about the recent single, the lockdown and the future plans of the project.


MIMR: We welcome Iain better known as Wood Ewe to MIMR, how would you best describe your sound and does your songwriting skills change with each track or do you have a tryed and tested method in this process?


Iain: Cheers for having me! If I was to try to sum it up it would be folk tinged experimental pop? Instruments and electronics meet to get a little weird and make you feel warm inside. Up to this point it’s mainly been a case of sitting at my laptop and trying to find a sound that gets me inspired, and from there the components of the track sort of reveal themselves, hopefully! I’ve been working on a lot of new material for 2021 that has been an effort to try another approach, but I’ll have more to share about that in a little while.


MIMR: MIMR have been thoroughly enjoying your music and ‘Commuter’ is a personal
favourite. What’s the track about and how has the ongoing lockdown affected you and your music?


Iain: Cheers! It sounds silly having written but Commuter is a favourite of mine too. I wrote it when I was getting the bus a lot for UV treatment in 2019, and made an effort to listen to as many new albums as possible. The track came entirely from that starting percussion idea and became a fun way of voicing the annoyances of any repetitive activity. Lockdown has given a lot of time to plan my next steps, but I’ve been struggling a lot with the lack of variety. The days seem to meld into one and it’s hard to set actual times for writing and producing without it just taking over everything! I’ve been fortunate not to have anything cancelled but Commuter did end up coming out a lot later than originally planned!




MIMR: What’s the one thing you miss about pre-lockdown life and can’t wait to return to doing whenever its safe to so of course?


Iain: It’s not the most inspired but I think I’ll look forward to some crate digging at Piccadilly records when it’s properly safe, there’s something a little special about finding an album you’ve been looking for, or even just taking the plunge and hearing something on vinyl for the first time!


MIMR: Personally i missed live gigs and going to the many amazing venues Manchester has to offer, which ones are your favourite hangouts in the city?


Iain: I’m a big fan of YES of course, whether it’s for a gig or a pint and a slice! It’s been incredibly sad to see the news that Gorilla is closing, as probably my favourite venue, it always struck the right balance between having a crowd and being intimate. Hopefully there’ll be some happier developments there, I’ll keep my fingers crossed.




MIMR: During the lockdown and away from music, was they’re any other activities that you found yourself enjoying to pass the time?

Iain: My Yorkie Tess has at least given me a reason to leave the house each day, After finishing up the last of my uni assignments, I’ve been allowing myself to play a few games here and there, whether that’s tabletop, such as Pandemic, or on my PC, mainly Dota but I’ve been losing a lot of time to Death Stranding since it came out, which is wonderfully bonkers in the best way.


MIMR: Despite all the uncertainty around at the moment, what do Wood Ewe have planned for the rest of 2020?


Iain: I’m hoping to have another EP out in time for the end of the year, so there won’t be any shortage of tunes from me, but in terms of live I’m waiting for now, as much as I’d love to be at a gig or playing some myself, I’m a bit cynical about how it’s all going to work out in the coming months. Wait and see though!




MIMR: Great to have you on the blog Iain, stay safe! How can people follow you on social media?

Iain: Always up for a chat, you too! I’m @woodewemusic on FB, Insta and Twitter and i can be found on Youtube by searching for wood ewe.

%d bloggers like this: