Music Diary for March 2014

Music diary March 2014

Our selection of live music shows that we went to in March ∏

Page last updated on 11th May

brought to you by the contributors of the MIL writers group

See previous Music Diary pages:

February 2014

January 2014

December 2013

November 2013

So far this month

The live music scene continued to be dominated by competitions of one kind or another I Wanna Be A Rockstar is running at the Shed and Play@LMF (for a place in the Leicester Music Festival) is being held at a variety of venues. The Original Bands Showcase is underway at the Musician and the Glastonbudget Festival is holding the last of its auditions for its May event. Auditions were held for the Western Park festival.

Saturday 29th March 2014.

Spotlight Kid at Lock 42.

by Keith Jobey

Déjà vu at Lock 42! Nottingham band Spotlight Kid return to Leicester as part of a small tour to promote their new album Ten Thousand Hours.

The District gets the night underway in a cloud of dry ice under the neon Lock 42 sign. They are a standard three-piece arrangement with a ‘70s new wave sound. And they’re pretty good at it, with the singer’s voice well suited to the style. Mid-set, guitars and vocal duties are swapped for one song and it’s like a different band is on stage. The punk sounds giving way to a more psyche rock sound with softer vocals while both guitarists show their competence on either guitar.

Next it’s the turn of the oddly named No! Not My Good Arm. This is their first gig, although you wouldn’t think so, since they’re a confident band. They are more straight-forward rock than the previous band and have a varied style throughout. There are a few covers filling up their set including a soul song to expand that range of styles. Their own song Take Me Alive is a fast-paced tune with a Foo Fighters feel to it.

Spotlight Kid Photo Keith Jobey

Spotlight Kid
Photo Keith Jobey

The PA music dies down, the lights dim, the shimmering cymbals intensify, guitars rev up to a crescendo The Joy Formidable would be proud of until the familiar loop of Sugar Pills begins and Spotlight Kid let loose. Sounding in places like Kate Bush’s Running Up That Hill with a shoegaze backing. There’s a little mix up after the third track. After two aborted attempts at the fourth song they figure out it’s because the drummer and the bassist have conflicting set lists! Strange but this happened last time I saw them here. They settle on playing Budge Up and normal service is resumed with the thunderous Burns Bass and plenty strobe lighting.

The new album has more of a pop feel in places than their previous work, and live here tonight there is evidence of a slight shift in style. Vocal levels are higher in the mix and guitars seem more tamed, less wrestling with feedback, especially in the songs from the new album. It’s all minor, and in no way detrimental or enough to make fans turn away in disgust. Don’t worry, they are still loud! They close their set with Disaster Tourist, the closing song on the new album but also the title of their previous album. And so ends another great Spotlight Kid gig at Lock 42.

22nd March

The Indiepop Alldayer at the Firebug. Read Keith Jobey’s review.

21st March

A night of top class music at The Cookie Jar. Bands:  Party in Paris, The Stacks and Casino Empire.  On the acoustic stage:  Matt Zara, Rosa Leigh, James Byron and Matt Henshaw

Review coming soon

20th March

Young bands showcase at The Shed with No Apologies, Before the Crash, Dead End Dreams and Faded Vision

Review coming soon

19th March

Leicester blues rock band The Bobcats headlined a Play@LMF show at The Exchange Bar.  Also on the line-up were the band that won the most votes – Niche, singer Polly Yates and other bands that provided a night of really good music for a well attended night. more later

18th March

At The Shed, the Glastonbudget Festival selectors held their second to last audition for the 2014 event.  Girls That Scream returned to Leicester to put on a thrilling set of their songs, Malicious Vinyl gave us an exciting set of their big rock songs and the night was headed by The Brandy Thieves.  It was a Tuesday, it was mid-month and yet the venue was packed to capacity.

The Bobcats played at the Exchange bar

The Bobcats played at The Exchange Bar as part of the Play@LMF.  We went to see them.  The trio’s set was extraordinary; their powerful blues rock songs were very enjoyable and musically most impressive. The Bobcats is now increasingly acknowledge as being one of the best bands in Leicester and their offering of jet-powered is crammed with strong vocals and blistering guitar work. They play with a passion and even if you are not a particular fans of the blues you are more than likely to be impressed with them as a band. The fact that so many people have appreciated their work is testament to their musical excellence.

See The Bobcats’ website

16th March

The Original Bands Showcase is underway at The Musician; read our post about this.

15th March

Elizabeth Cornish at the Cookie Jar with Samuel Idwal and Weikie. Keith Jobey tells us about it.

15th March

I Wanna Be A Rockstar at The Shed saw performances from The Arcadians, Flying Kangaroo Alliance, Phoenix Salvation and Terrace.  Read our review.

14th March

OBS heat at the Musician with Afterthought Playground, The Bench That Rocked, 8 Miles High and The World Can Wait.  More about OBS.

11th March

A good night at the Soundhouse for Rhett Barrow’s open-mic night with Jonezy doing a set and a performance by  student band The Jack Rabbits. Adding to the richness of the show, Ruthie Coles delivered a marvelous set and Calvin Jeffrey gave a superb performance.

10th March

The Leicester Music Forum met at The Cookie; read our report.

8th March

Flying Kangaroo Alliance at Pi Bar Photo Keith Jobey

Flying Kangaroo Alliance at Pi Bar
Photo Keith Jobey

Flying Kangaroo Alliance and Midnight Wire at Pi Bar

8th March

I Wanna Be A Rockstar, heat 2,  saw Alex Van Roose on stage (as the guest artist), followed by Black Room Fiasso, Versus Ursus, Deep Red Thread, Saving Amy and The Purce.

A fair-sized crowd had gathered tonight for the second of the heats of the IWBARS competition.

Better known as the lead singer of Midnight Wire, Alex Van Roose can also lay claim to be one of Leicester’s most entertaining solo acts. Tonight, Alex delighted the audience with a set of his very memorable songs which he delivered with his usual warmth and good humour.

The four members of Black Room Fiasco gave us strong vocals and compelling rock songs in a  set that was varied and enjoyable.

Leicester band Deep Red Thread put on a set that was strong on attack, the vocals of the two singers blending well together and carrying well over the pounding drum parts and bass lines. Driven forward by lots of energy and Sophie’s impressive vocals, the audience was soon clapping along to the infectious rhythms and ear-pleasing melodies of their songs. Drawing a positive reaction from the crowd, many of which were committed fans, DRT sailed through to a place in the semi-finals.

Follow Deep Red Thread on Facebook

7th March

One good night at The shed

Two stages of music at The Shed with Luzon Bleeding Heart, Black Mesa, Dan Wright, Four Point Oh, Headwires, The Moon Things, Burnout and Shattered Generation.

Down in the basement singer Dan Wright opened the evening’s line-up. A good singer, he treated the audience to a set of his own songs.

Leicester band Luzon Bleeding Heart delivered a crackin’ set of beats, hard-edged and compelling, showing just how good they are at revving up a show. Tonight, LBH’s intimate gig allowed their fans to get close up to the band; doing what they do, they can also power-up stages at festivals and much bigger venues when they fill a big space with a more than adequately big sound.

Upstairs,  The Burnouts rocked out, delivering a set of fiery songs, full of the energy of rock ‘n’ roll.

Shattered Generation put on a show-stopping performance. Led by their star-quality lead singer, they gave the room a unforgettable rock experience.

Also downstairs, there were spectacular sets by Leicester bands Black Mesa, FourPointOh and Headwires.

Altogether a really good night at the Shed.

4th March

Play@LMF heat 1 at The Shed with The Simpletones, Jonezy, The Blazing Owls, The Arcadians and The Bench That Rocked.

The Arcadians gave a perky performance that was enjoyed by the audience. It can be difficult opening at night but they lived up to the challenge.

The Bench That Rocked provided an entertaining set that included some of their own songs and some covers. This is a band that always puts on a good set lead by the robust vocals of Billy Chamberlain. Fun-filled songs played with verve they clearly enjoyed playing as much as the audience enjoyed listening to the,

The Blazing Owls provided a set of melodic indie songs.  Followers of The Strokes and Vampire Weekend might give you a clue.

Music artist Jonezy performed his new song Journey Together, with the singing of Norway’s rising young star Alexandru on the backing tracks. Jonezy launched his set with his song Mental, bringing together the pulsating rhythms of both hip-hop and hardcore rock. His heart-felt song Letter To Dad brought tears to the eyes of many. A new song Monster, based on the Enimen track ft Rihanna was also in his set.  Jonezy will be performing with Norway’s Alexandru live on the Icon stage at Glastonbudget on 24th May.

The Simpletones are one of Leicester’s great music assets. The four a-capella singers are one of the most popular music acts in Leicester. This is a group that always provides a rich and unique musical experience. as always they delivered their set of ear-licking songs with much good humour and bonhomme. Needless to say they went through to the semi-finals of Play@LMF.

Check out tonight’s acts:  The Arcandians, The Bench That Rocked, The Blazing Owls, Jonezy, The Simpletones.

Come back for more write-ups and photos

1st March

Sean Grant & The Wolfgang at the OBS March 1st

Sean Grant & The Wolfgang at the OBS March 1st

Playing at the Musician for the OBS were Spartan Skyline, Phoenix Salvation, Sean Grant & The Wolfgang and Black Mesa – come back for a full review.

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See also:

February music diary

January music diary

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