1. Micah Blue Smaldone // Tom Kovacevic // Tekla

    Thursday April 24th,
    Castle Hotel, Oldham Street, Manchester.
    £5, 8pm.


    A joint promotion with The Thousand, this gig brings together two former members of Fire on Fire, whose music was released by Michael Gira’s Young God Records. 

    In a rare and welcome visit from East Coast Maine, they bring us their respective solo projects, on what promises to be a tremendous evening.

    // Micah Blue Smaldone //

    Built upon a foundation of fingerstyle Piedmont Blues guitar, Smaldone’s solo efforts have expanded over the years into full-band accompaniment, both acoustic and electric, and often vivid, emotive lyrics. You may have heard the guitar duet he recorded with Jack Rose, for Jack’s Dr Ragtime and Pals album.


    // Tom Kovacevic // 

    An accomplished Arabic oud and nay player, Tom will be performing music from his supernaturally unique and dynamic solo album, Universe Thin as Skin.


    // Tekla //

    Local support comes from our favourite songstress: ethereal lullabies, played and sung in inimitable style—understated, yet brimming with invention and delicate beauty.



  2. Daniel Bachman // Phil Tyler // Irma Vep

    Wednesday, March 12th, 
    Castle Hotel, Oldham Street, Manchester.
    £5, 8pm.


    // Daniel Bachman //

    Daniel last year released the stunning LP, Jesus I’m a Sinner, on Tompkins Square Records (US some-time home to James Blackshaw, William Tyler and Frank Fairfield, among others). It’s American Primitive-style, solo acoustic guitar music that still manages to sound heavy as hell. He calls it “psychedelic appalachia.” 


    // Phil Tyler //

    Phil is best known as one half of husband-wife duo, Cath & Phil Tyler, who together make searing renditions of traditional Anglo-American folk songs. Left to his own devices, Phil doubles down on the banjo, to equally beguiling and beautiful effect. 


    // Irma Vep //

    Anyone who’s caught Irma Vep live (and many have) will know how truly brilliant he is. Haunting, caustic songs, sometimes recalling Jandek or early Smog, delivered with bare intensity.



  3. Serious Sam Barrett // Rik Warren // Where Joy Kills Sorrow

    Saturday, November 16th, 
    The Unicorn, 26 Church Street, Manchester, M4 1PW
    £4 adv (http://www.wegottickets.com/event/248363), 8pm.


    // Serious Sam Barrett //

    Yorkshire-born singer-songwriter, tirelessly inventing and interpreting joyful folk songs, conveying a passion and affinity for the music of the American South, with a sensibility all his own.

    Sam has toured extensively—most recently with Jamie Barrier, of Alabama’s Pine Hill Haints—but rarely plays in Manchester, so catch him while you can.


    // Rik Warren //

    A truly hypnotic singer and guitarist, deeply wired into the Delta blues, playing original songs that get in your head and don’t leave. 


    // Where Joy Kills Sorrow //

    Spirited homage to old-time folk music and bluegrass, featuring local folkies, T.G. Elias and Sam Schlicht (Suttree).


  4. Cath & Phil Tyler // Tekla // Jon Southall

    Tuesday, October 29th, 
    Lloyds Chorlton, Wilbraham Road, Manchester,
    £3, 8pm.


    // Cath & Phil Tyler // 

    Husband and wife duo, playing Anglo-American folk music with guitar, banjo and voice. The stark beauty of their instrumental arrangements and searing vocal delivery get right to the heart of traditional folk music.

    Praise for their incredible LP, Dumb Supper, released by MIE Records:

    "Folk moves into a new era with Cath and Phil. Their combination of earthiness and grit, raw yet heartfelt and beautiful singing and immaculate playing makes this one of the most exciting and most moving albums I’ve heard in a long while." 
    - Fiona Talkington, ‘Late Junction’, BBC Radio 3 

    Dumb Supper is one of those rare modern folk albums that will find a home in both the longstanding ‘traditional’ music community and among those attracted to the form’s more experimental and lo-fi possibilities….It’s a weird looking-glass effect many folk fans will be familiar with: the straighter you play it, the stranger it gets…Shirley Collins always understood this and so do Cath & Phil Tyler.”
    - Frances Morgan, Plan B Magazine 

    Hear it for yourself:

    // Tekla //

    Ethereal lullabies, played and sung in inimitable style—understated, yet brimming with invention and delicate beauty. 


    // Jon Southall //

    A rare live appearance by an astonishing folk musician. A seamless blend of traditional and original tunes, performed with undeniable technical mastery and emotive sincerity.



  5. L’Etrangleuse // McWatt // Irma Vep // David M. Birchall

    Wednesday, July 24th, 
    Kro Bar, Oxford Road, Manchester,

    £4, 8pm.


    // L’Etrangleuse //

    French duo utilising harp, guitar and vocals to produce a sound incorporating post-rock textures, West African grooves, and an element of strange pop music.


    // McWatt //

    Beautiful compositions referencing Satie, Mingus and sea shanties, by way of double bass, flute and accordion.
    "A pensive slice of chamber folk that unfolds with the grace and weight of a Gavin Bryars piece." - The Wire magazine reviewing their brilliant LP, released by Singing Knives Records.


    // Irma Vep //

    Haunting, caustic songs, sometimes recalling Jandek or early Smog, delivered with bare intensity.
    "Stevens hangs conventional blues on a rack and pulls at the levers to leave it writhing and groaning, involuntarily splintering out fuzz and distortion… An uncomfortably thrilling listen." - Drowned in Sound


    // David M. Birchall //

    Local DIY hero, known for his stellar improv work (recently showcased in Cheetham/Birchall Duo) and forays with part-Norwegian psych folkers, Kalbakken.



  6. Daniel Bachman // dbh // Tom Settle

    Wednesday, June 19th,
    The Castle Hotel, Oldham Street, Manchester.
    £5 adv (http://www.wegottickets.com/event/222529


    // Daniel Bachman //

    Daniel last year released the stunning LP, Seven Pines, on Tompkins Square Records (US home to James Blackshaw, William Tyler, Michael Chapman and Hiss Golden Messenger, among others). It’s American Primitive-style, solo acoustic guitar music that manages to sound heavy as hell. He calls it “psychedelic appalachia.”

    Here is some of that: 

    // dbh //

    Awesome local solo guitarist and man-of-many-bands.

    We recently released dbh’s LP, Time Flies, and would obviously be happy to expound on his and its brilliance at great length, but it’s safe to say he would sooner you just listen for yourself: 

    // Tom Settle //

    Tom has been making brilliant, psyched-out folk music in various forms and guises over the years, and is soon to release an LP on class Manc imprint, Golden Lab Records, sure to be eagerly awaited by anyone who’s caught him live.

    A couple of tunes captured here:


  7. image

    Time Flies, by dbh, was released today—it is now available to buy as a 180g, 12” vinyl LP or download. 

    The album can be streamed and downloaded here, or through the usual online outlets, but we advise buying the LP—which includes a free download—from us here, or at any of the following quality record shops:

    Manchester - Piccadilly Records (folk record of the week!)
    Chorlton - Kingbee Records
    Leeds - Jumbo Records and Norman Records
    Birmingham - Ignite and Polar Bear Records
    London - Rough Trade East

    Albany, NY - Flipped Out Records
    Asheville, NC - Tomentosa Records

    Plenty others have orders on the way, including in London, Liverpool, and Bristol. We’ll be keeping this list up-to-date, and appreciate any feedback as to elsewhere the record should be stocked.

    Sending out promo can be dispiriting, but the genuine enthusiasts who staff the best record shops make it worth the bother. Thanks are due also to BBC 6 Music (Guy Garvey and Tom Ravenscroft in particular), who’ve had no qualms about playing on mainstream radio a proggy, instrumental folk record—albeit one conceived by a musical prodigy! The DIY and folk scenes in Manchester and beyond have been a constant source of support and influence for our first release, including other labels MIE, Golden Lab Records, Tompkins Square, Singing Knives Records, Heat Death, Mississippi Records, Little Red Rabbit and Lancashire and Somerset Records.


  8. Thanks to everyone who contributed to a fantastic LP launch at the Briton’s Protection last night. The support shown was overwhelming—so much so that any publicly listed statistics would spell eternal damnation for our health and safety record. It was hot and crowded, and many late arrivals could unfortunately not get in, and we’re sorry for all that, but a truly gracious crowd made the night a success all the same. Tekla and McWatt both were absolutely captivating, and dbh himself played a classic set, even throwing in a mind-bending instrumental tribute to Neil Young! 

    Photo courtesy of Anton Andrzej Bielecki.


  9. dbh // McWatt // Tekla


    Time Flies, the forthcoming LP by dbh, will be released on January 14th. In time-honoured fashion, there will be a gig to commemorate this event. It will be held at the Briton’s Protection in Manchester, on January 11th, starting at 8pm—£3 entry. If you are reading this, consider yourself cordially invited. 

    Support will be as follows:

    // McWatt //

    Yorkshire-based duo, playing Satie-influenced instrumentals on double bass, flute and accordion. This will be their first Manchester gig for some time, exciting news for anyone familiar with their brilliant eponymous album, released by Singing Knives Records.

    The Wire magazine had this to say about that:
    'A pensive slice of chamber folk that unfolds with the grace & weight of a Gavin Bryars piece.'

    // Tekla //

    Ethereal lullabies, played and sung in inimitable style—understated, yet brimming with invention and delicate beauty.  


  10. dbh vinyl ahoy! Available 14th January…