Notes from a downward spiral: Alan shares a relatable tale of the numb listlessness and anhedonia that comes with a bout of depression.
This article written by Alan Corcoran is part of our #MentallySound series, discussing mental health in music. Trigger warning: depression.
Mostly I just feel paralysed. If my head was in a better place I’d probably think that sounded melodramatic, but for now the only feeling is a lack of feeling. Options stack up in front of me. Impossible options. I cannot make any decisions today.
I know there’s work to be done. Life admin. Basic stuff. Exercise would be good. Shaving and a shower are definitely on both a mental and physical list. Relationships of every kind are going untended. Texts. Gigs. Invites to celebrations. Sorry, sorry, sorry.
A gnawing in my stomach reminds me that I’m at least still capable of some feeling. Anxiety, like a snake in a particularly on-the-nose fable, sidles up to wrap itself around in an embrace. Breathing exercises can get fucked, I can’t breathe. A headache fog fills my brain.Continue reading “Unsent Text Messages & Neglected Friendships”
Fanzines are as old as punk itself, and have always been an integral part of the scene, especially in pre-Internet times: an open and unbiased resource for spreading the word about new bands, albums and gigs. A cheap and easy format to make and distribute.
You may think that the format is now obsolete and unnecessary, what with the world wide web at everybody’s fingertips, but zines and zine culture is thriving, and the internet has not hampered that.
If anything, it can act as a formidable marketing tool for zine makers, now able to reach a far wider audience than they arguably could have ‘back in the day’ when zines were only shared at shows and amongst friends in their own scenes.
Many punk zines have come and gone over the years, but a personal favourite of mine, Lights Go Out, has been consistently putting issues out since 2008. I recently caught up with the dude who runs it, Mr T, and asked him about his zine:
Manchester Punk Festival has grown significantly since its beginning five years ago. As one of the biggest punk festivals the UK has to offer, it remains fervently independent, affordable and free from corporate sponsorship.
Now that MPF is booking massive international headliners, increasing its capacity with new venues and still selling out of tickets (in 2018, there’s a handful left for 2019); it’s easy to forget the DIY roots of the festival… but the organisers definitely haven’t.
The festival is coordinated by a collective composed of three distinct Manchester promoters: TNSrecords, Anarchistic Undertones and Moving North. Outside of MPF, AU and Moving North are still putting on small DIY shows at least once a month, while TNSrecords are working hard championing and releasing records from up-and-coming punk rock bands. All three groups work to promote independent music, tirelessly and with no expectation of financial gain, and they apply the same mentality to Manchester Punk Festival.
Origins of Manchester Punk Festival
Things all kicked off in 2013 with TNSrecords’ 10 Year Anniversary all-dayer; the biggest event they’d run by themselves. They’d had a stage at Strummercamp for a number of years, which contributed to their desire to run a bigger festival. In the year before, they’d seen a gap for a collaboration in the Manchester scene, which led to them calling a meeting of like-minded promoters.
Ben (ex-Paper Champ/The 4130s) shares a personal story of how fear and anxiety have hindered his enjoyment of punk rock.
Guest post written by Ben Wiles, previously of Paper Champ & The 4130s. This is part of our #MentallySound series, discussing mental health in music.
Hi. I’m Ben and I’m an emetophobe! There, I said it.
Emetophobia is a fear of vomiting. I’ve been emetophobic for as far back as I can remember. I have no idea of the origins of this phobia and, if you are reading this thinking, “Woah, that’s a strange one,” you’d be right. I think the exact same thing; everyone throws up right?
Fuck – some people actively go out of their way to drink enough booze to puke every Friday. Fair play to them. I don’t drink. It’s not my bag. Over the years not drinking has had a big impact on being in a band and, by extension, being in a gig setting. I never wanted to be ‘that guy’ who was down on a party and stop my band mates enjoying themselves and getting wasted. But it was getting harder and harder to be around drunk people. Continue reading “Punk Rock, Anxiety, Phobias and Friendship”
05:15 and I’ve accidentally set my alarm for 5pm, so Luke Yates, guitarist in The Human Project has to knock on my door to wake me up. I have one job (to get out of bed on time), and I’ve failed it.
It’s an early start, as are many of these trips. Loading merchandise into the back of a van at 5am, after staying in Luke’s spare room in Leeds the night before, I start considering why we bother. As a teenager, I imagined going on tour would involve a big Nightliner – a tour lorry with bunks beds, big screen TVs and a bar. As an adult I look forward to jumping in the back of a Mercedes Vito to travel in boredom for 10 hours, just to watch a band play for 30 minutes.
There’s an acceptance to it. It’s not glamorous, but it is fun. Luke jumps in the drivers seat of the van and we taxi round Leeds in the pre-dawn darkness to collect the rest of the band.
Canadian melodic punks Pkewx3 give us a unique track-by-track breakdown of their new album… by picking which beer pairs best with each song.
Canadian melodic punks Pkew PkewPkew have created one of the most fun records of the year with Optimal Lifestyles. Rather than the traditional track-by-track breakdown of the album, but asked them to give us a unique insight into the record: by telling us which beer they’d pair each track with.
Want to drink along? Load up the album on Spotify – it’s was released on March 1st via Big Scary Monsters an Dine Alone Records. Enjoy this choice shopping list of Canadian ales to pair with the record!
1. Still Hangin’ Out After All These Years
This best pairs with any of the ones listed at the end of the track—take your pick!
2. I Don’t Matter At All
This is a pretty tasty track if you ask us. It’s kind of reminiscent of The Strokes so we’ll go with Brooklyn Lager for this one. Brooklyn Brewery is one of the only NYC breweries that we get up in Canada.