We spoke to acoustic melody-master Brightr about his new album, the emotional songwriting process and the supportive punk rock scene that’s helped him along.
Interview by Sarah Williams.
Earlier this year, solo artist Brightr (otherwise known as Laurie Cottingham) released his second album Two Sides. It’s an intricate, moving acoustic record, which launched with a little help from Lockjaw Records, No Reason Records and Penultimate Records.
Although he describes himself as gloomy emo-pop, I consider Laurie to be an expert in weaving bright, hopeful acoustic tunes, in the same family as City & Colour or Newton Faulkner before Radio 2 picked him up. Two Sides is a welcome follow-up to Year One; it’s a beautiful, soulful and positive record.
We had a chat with Laurie to celebrate the release.
You’ve recently released a brand new album Two Sides. How does it feel to finally share it with the world?
It feels great to finally be able to get the record out in to the world. These are songs I’ve been working on and obsessing over for far too long (tweaking and changing… and overthinking) so to finish recording them was a huge emotional purge for me. To release them is an entirely different, more exciting time. Continue reading “Brightr: Ebbs and Flows of Emotion [Interview]”
…and every woman you perceive to be perfect hates themselves anyway. Millie Manders explores the impossible beauty standards we face, and how that affects her as an artist.
Guest article written by the marvellous Millie Manders, of Millie Manders & The Shut Up Fame. This is part of our #MentallySound series, exploring mental health in music. Trigger warning: eating disorders, body dysmorphia.
Perfect women are imperfect and every woman you perceive to be perfect hates themselves anyway
I hate myself. I’m not perfect. I am very, very imperfect and I hate myself. And seeing as I have been given the honour of this platform to share about mental health, I want to get right to the bones of something people are petrified of truly admitting is a problem.
I believe, as a musician who gets to do some of the coolest things ever, I should be helping people to see through the lies we are sold and to love themselves better. And I really do try to do that.
I teach young impressionable students at a music college, a huge proportion of whom have body image issues and other anxieties that I talk to them about. I share good practise and self-love resources with them and signpost them to other sites/forums/centres wherever I can, to help them be more positive and kind towards themselves.
The problem is that I feel guilty for it. I feel like a fraud. I have bought into those same lies for as long as I can remember and I punish myself every day. Continue reading “Perfect Women Are Imperfect”
Relive PRH 2018 with our honest, personal account of last year’s shenanigans. Featuring Bad Religion, Adrenalized, Almeida, Mad Caddies, Authority Zero and many more…
Last year I (Sarah) had a fantastic trip to Punk Rock Holiday in Slovenia with the Lockjaw Records crew. I wrote a review while I was there… but I was too catastrophically overwhelmed with real life to finish it off and get it online.
Rather than waste it, have a giggle about last year’s shenanigans while you gear up for Punk Rock Holiday 2019… with some fantastic photos from Silvy Maatman and Dave Sloan.
“This is the best festival ever!” says everyone, about every festival, ever. The difference is that Punk Rock Holiday genuinely is The Best Festival Ever.
Talking to people over the weekend, interestingly the consensus is that people attend PRH year after year for reasons other than the bands playing. They come for the stunning Alpine scenery, the crystal clear, glacial rivers, and the opportunity to relax on two wonderful river beaches. The main stage is nestled in a clearing in the forest, so the evening bands play surrounded by tall, verdant trees as the sunset glistens through the canopy.
This is a festival where you are guaranteed to be partying with punk rockers from every corner of the world: I mainly spent the week with friends from Brighton, Sweden, Germany, Finland and Belgium who I’d hardly have the opportunity to see if events like this didn’t draw us together. Continue reading “Review: Punk Rock Holiday 1.8 Throwback”
Five women are standing against Jonny ‘Itch’ Fox in defamation case he’s raised for speaking up against his behaviour and actions. Guest writer Em Johnson explains the importance of our solidarity with those women.
Guest article written by Em Johnson.
Do you know what bores me? The left fighting the left.
Why do we burn our calories about Corbyn vs Blair and then sleepwalk into a Boris Johnson cavity of hell?
Why do punk kids bicker between themselves about sub-genres when the entire concept of ‘influencers’ has been allowed to become a thing?
Why do vegans turn on each other about honey and palm oil in Facebook wormholes when corporations are burning the planet?
This week The Guardian brought to public attention the defamation claim brought against five women by Jonny ‘Itch’ Fox of The King Blues, a band who were the darlings of the punk scene soon after their formation in 2004, but latterly shunned by many due to persistent rumours about Itch’s behaviour and character – often in relation to women. Five women now stand accused of a ‘persistent campaign of harassment’. Continue reading “Solidarity Not Silence: We Must Win”
Old-school hardcore punk from an unlikely Devon village. FFO: Fugazi and Dag Nasty.
Review by Ollie Stygall.
I live in a small, unremarkable Devon town called Chudleigh. It’s relatively quaint, relatively quiet and relatively pleasant.
The most remarkable moment in Chudleigh’s very long history was in 1807 when two thirds of the town burned down in a fire. The only casualty was a pig. Nowadays the residents take to Facebook in righteous indignation over bad parking, minor vandalism and sometimes, on a lighter note, to find a decent plumber!
Chudeligh is not, however, a punk rock haven. I have long suspected that I am the only lover of our beloved form of musical anarchy in our sleepy town. That is until a couple of weeks ago when I got a message from the husband of a friend of my wife to tell me about his band. I was intrigued but, I have to admit, not entirely hopeful. This is Chudleigh after all. I did not expect much. I certainly didn’t expect to be blown away. Continue reading “Album Review: Gunka – Nothing Left To Say”
Skate-punk newbies Swan Prince have made an impression around the UK.
Interview by Sarah Williams.
Growing in popularity in the last six months, Swan Prince at a Midlands skate-punk band that you may recognise from support slots with bands like Red City Radio and The Bombpops. Unfortunately, they called an indefinite hiatus after completing this interview, but we’re sure they’re still worth a listen.
You’ve recently released an EP Enjoy The Rain on Hell Hath No Fury Records. What part of the EP are you most proud of?
Josh S: Personally I think our sound became more focused in our new EP and has definitely set us on a path for the new stuff we are working on. Also, being self produced, I was happier with the production than that of our first EP. Albeit taking us a fraction of the time.
My personal favourite part of the record is that we have managed to capture the energy and angst of the band. Choosing 5 songs to help portray that to the listener isn’t easy but from start to finish the listener is able to truly and fully understand who we are and what we feel is important.
Continue reading “Band Spotlight: Swan Prince [Interview]”
Casual Nausea show that punk is far from dead on their album ‘Demons’, out now TNSrecords. FFO: Crass, Subhumans, The Casualties, The Distillers.
Written by Ollie Stygall.
When I was at university many years ago, at the end of each academic year we had a Summer Ball. This involved us all dressing up smart and having a massive party. Beforehand we would pretend to be civilised and all go for a nice meal together… the calm before the storm, as it were.
One time, whilst walking back to college from the meal, my mate strolled away from the group towards the edge of the pavement. He then proceeded, without missing a step, to vomit into the gutter. He then, still without missing a step, and without getting any on himself, pulled a hanky from his pocket, dabbed his mouth and re-joined the group to continue the conversation where he had left off moments before. This is, and will always remain, the finest example of casual nausea I have ever witnessed.
Ipswich’s Casual Nausea, allegedly named after co-vocalist Zoe Barrow’s pre-gig nerves, are certainly now up there with the above story in my top 10 list of casual nauseae… and I never realised I had such a top 10 list!
This Casual Nausea play punk rock and keep it old school, which is exactly how I like it.
Apart from the updated production values, Casual Nausea wouldn’t have been entirely out of place on the Crass Records roster 35 years ago, as they blast out fast, edgy, politicised punk rock complete with male and female lead vocals and a shit ton of snotty melody. It brings to mind Crass, The Subhumans, The Casualties, Minor Threat, The Distillers, etc. Pop punk this ain’t! Continue reading “Album Review: Casual Nausea – Demons”