Dictating the course of rock’n’roll, This Feeling have been unearthing underground new talent for over a decade now, and Mikey Johns always sets the new year off with a bang, with his ‘Big In …’ parties. This year, London is being graced with two gigs, the first of which takes place next Saturday (January 13th) at Nambucca. A fresh lineup with post punk grunge music and raw indie pop bands, nine incredible musicians will be taking to the stage to showcase the immense amount of vibrant, vivacious under the radar talent right now.
Have a look at the bands gracing the lineup below
Beautifully melodic, stylish in essence and grating in sound, Anteros are a magnificent force on stage. Laura Hayden is a dreamy front woman, her whole aura being captivating. The confidence and power of the band is unapproachable, their rock riffs doused in a slick pop burst, their clever hooks and lyrics blurring rock’n’roll with a more mainstream pop feel. The aesthetic Anteros possess is stunning, with a vivid elegance projected on stage, captivating every single member of the audience and inducing an infectious energy. The artistic element to the band and creative exploration they have gives Anteros an intriguing and unique feel, presented stunningly both on and off stage.
A vibrant and impassioned storm, Himalayas are a zealously fiery burst of power and energy. On stage, they have this careless arrogance and approach which draws the audience in like magnets; this may be a result of their hefty riffs and boldly punchy guitar loops, or perhaps it’s a result of the energy and passion channelled within minutes of them stepping on stage. Riff wise, the band have a quirky Husky Loops edge to them, Joe’s nasty dirty vocal giving their music a snarly grit. He has a cocky abrasive approach, the nasty heaviness ingrained in their music justifying this arrogance and confidence flowing on their stages.
An exciting phenomenon which has been gradually building in the UK is snarly indie pop merged with grunge music, taking direct inspiration from Seattle 90s rock. Hey Charlie interlock riffs and bass lines clearly inspired by bands like Nirvana (especially in Hey, the chorus an ode to Heart Shaped Box) with soft soothing vocals, delicately lined with a whispery elegance. Harmonising softly works well, as the band layer this over dark heavy guitar lines, which creates an almost trippy contrast. Sharp shouts and rolling drum loops help build up an air of intensity, the band’s music packing an atmospheric bite.
For twisted theatrical drama on stage, paired with biting vocals and snarly licks of heavy guitar rock’n’roll, Avalanche Party are the go to band. A hefty riot of distorted rock, Avalanche Party are a dark force of grit and thrashing intensity. On stage, they have a deranged feel to them, an element of post grunge nastiness entwined in their music, which has a tough grit embedded in the lyricism. They’re abrasive and uncaring and unorthodox, which makes for a daring and thrilling feel. Blindingly powerful in sound and arrogant in attitude, there’s a nasty sleaze and rich rock’n’roll vibrancy to Avalanche Party which is hectic and immense to see on stage.
With a boldly energetic neo-indie shoegaze rock sound, The Surrenders are an atmospheric and exciting band, fusing funky bluesy rock’n’roll with a rhythmic soul edge. The genres are fused together exceptionally well, with a Hendrix-esque lick of guitar running through each track. Connor’s voice is snarly and gritty and raw, tearing through the blues riffs perfectly, each element of the band’s sound interlocking in perfect sync. There’s a heavy aura of nostalgia to The Surrenders (yet still retaining a spirited vitality), inducing a deep similarity to classic 60s & 70s bands like Led Zeppelin and The Rolling Stones (think early Stones, when they were taking inspiration from American soul and blues like Chuck Berry and Muddy Waters).
A punk poet at heart, Lucie Barât has skill, finesse and passion embedded in her music. Musically speaking, she uses poetic lyricism and a sharp cheeky wit to build up a more unexplored sound in modern day rock music. Lucie has a synth rock undercurrent to her music, layering her sharply pronounced lyrics over a blurry raw rock band set up; the spoken word entwined in her music is slick and punchy, delivering a fresh and honest feel. Through the openness of her lyrics (which are the core foundations of her music), Lucie reminds me a lot of musicians like Kate Nash, Kate Tempest or Patti Smith, given the witty grace and almost humorous nature of her writing.
Divulge in punk music with a snazzy lick of carefully curated pop, in other words give
Calva Louise a listen, a band who epitomise DIY punk with a sugarcoated pop bite. Lead vocalist Jess is ferocious, her gravely grating voice challenging the sharpness and cutting harshness of her guitar riffs. The band are heavy and intimidating in presence, their light handed pop aura mixing in with their rock bite perfectly. The underground rock scene has been crying out for too long for a band who can fuse punk and pop without sounding boring or mainstream, and Calva Louise fit this desire all too well. It’s fuzzy messy punky grungy pop, each genre delicately balanced out to perplex and entice their audiences all at once.
Nodding a head to retro Britrock, entwining indie rock with an air of astute rock’n’roll elegance, SHEAFS are a riotous force of nature on stage, always going down impeccably well with their audiences. Their anthemic bold rock tracks have slices of post punk and indie licks of guitar darting throughout, clouding their sound into a wholesome, punchy riot. Sparkling with a graced demeanour of confidence and lyrical finesse, the band have a raw feel good sound, edged with musical brilliance and power.
A thrilling concoction of dark indie rock with a hot rock’n’roll beat snarling its way through the music, JUDAS are powerful in sound and essence, creating an unflinching, unapproaching rock sound. Their riffs are intriguingly composed, constructed in a very clever and intricate way, which is endearing and captivating to their audiences. There’s a raunchy feel good beat to the music, amplifying a bold, in your face dance aura. Sound wise, the band aren’t new or unique in the sense Calva Louise or Avalanche Party are, yet by picking out certain elements of rock’n’roll which work nail bitingly well together, JUDAS are able to build up a sharp, meticulously refined sound which is electric.
Buy tickets here
January 25th at The Monarch (Camden) is This Feeling’s second Big In 2018 night in London, with SONS, The Scruff, The Velvet Hands and more. You can purchase tickets here
Calva Louise, Himalayas, Anteros & Avalanche Party feature in Issue Two of DIY print zine Some Might Say, alongside 26 other incredible bands. This Feeling have their copies, do you?
With very limited copies left, pick one up for £3.50 here