Tuesday 15 January 2019


Although quite evidently born to be a star, Dave Kusworth has always been in the photograph, but rarely on the front page. This rakish Brummie was there when punk hit his hometown, and has played a significant role in the music scene of the Midlands and beyond ever since.

Hailed by the likes of Alan McGee, Bobby Gillespie and The Replacements’ Paul Westerberg as one of the great unsung British songwriters, his records have appeared on such renowned labels as Creation, Glass, Mammoth, Secretly Canadian and Bomp!, while his songs have been covered by groups and artists of the stature of The Lemonheads and Mercury Rev.

A student at Moseley School of Art, Kusworth had been a member of seminal Birmingham garage-band TV Eye, whose should’ve-been-a-hit ‘Stevie’s Radio Station’ would, via a circuitous route, go on to form the basis of Duran Duran’s Top 10 globe-straddler ‘Rio’.

Following a period in The Subterranean Hawks alongside TV Eye drummer Dave Twist and former Duran Duran singer Stephen Duffy, Kusworth wound up in London, joining the fledgling Dogs D’Amour in time to play on their debut album The State We’re In.

Returning to Birmingham, he would hook up with his friend and former Swell Map, Nikki Sudden, in The Jacobites, releasing several acclaimed singles and albums during the 90s. Also that decade, Kusworth would form his own band The Bounty Hunters, signing to Creation Records for two albums, as well as solo releases. For the new millennium, he would return with another new band, The Tenderhooks, featuring his old friend Dave Twist. More recently, he has been both recording and gigging as The Dave Kusworth group.

With a new solo album in the works, Kusworth has compiled the 20-track double-vinyl The World Of Dave Kusworth Vol 1 & 2 the first ever vinyl Kusworth career overview - drawing from his various releases over the decades, complete with eye-catching gatefold packaging by Twist in homage to Decca’s The World Of… series of compilations. Released on Troubadour via Easy Action, the album will  also available as a single CD and download.

Dave is available for interviews now. 

"A slightly eccentric, though thoroughly endearing, ramble through his oeuvre." **** RNR

“A near-chronological ride through some of Dave Kusworth’s strongest and most affecting work… there is beauty and brittleness behind the bottle and it is to be held tight.” LOUDERTHANWAR

“Fantastic talent – fantastic legacy – Buy it!" RPM


Bob Collum hails from Tulsa, Oklahoma but is long settled in deepest Essex; an unrepentant and incurable anglophile who’s released a series of acclaimed albums while regularly gigging with his ever-evolving Welfare Mothers.

Pay Pack And Carry arrives with the anticipated meld of tradition and innovation. Based on a long-established fusion of power pop and country music it shows once again his mastery of both, overlaid with many other fascinations, and featuring a couple of significant guest collaborators in Martin Belmont (Ducks Deluxe, The Rumour) and Peter Holsapple (REM, The dBs) who just happen to be musical giants.

Recorded over the course of a year Bob’s preference has been never to spend more than two consecutive days in the studio: “It keeps it more fun; doing just a couple of days at a time you avoid getting bogged down”. As previously he uses former Vibrator Pat Collier’s studio, allowing Pat to take much of the producer’s role. 

The core players are long-serving drummer Paul Quarry, bassist Matthew Hall, and recent recruit Mags Layton on violin. Mags came with new perspectives, initiating the Bernard Hermann vibe to ‘Blue Sky Rain’, radically altering the song and squeezing out all guitar bar Martin’s arpeggios and fills.

She’s also allowed Bob to rein back on the more traditional country elements. The title track proves a fine example of how they can infuse his compositions without being blatant. He’ll reference particular Byrds and Monkees songs as “not trying too hard to sound like country songs. Taking the elements but doing it organically rather than dramatically”.

There are readings of both Mike Heron’s ‘Log Cabin Home In The Sky’ and Michael Nesmith’s ‘Different Drum’, as Bob strongly believes doing covers prevents a performer seeming too self-absorbed. Peter Holsapple provides harmonies on both: “I knew it was right up his alley. Peter can do the vocal asides – the ‘yeahs’ and ‘woos’ I wish I could.”

Avoiding self-absorption is typical of the man. Getting Bob Collum to stay on the subject of his music can be some task, though he does concede: “I like the new album”. Then he’ll be making light of his abilities, and start talking about The Beatles again. It may speak to his grounding, self-awareness, and sense of standing on the shoulders of giants, but underplay it as he might Pay Pack And Carry provides yet more evidence of his singular talent.

Pay Pack And Carry is out now through HarbourSong Records.

"He has a rare gift for melodies and hooks and fuses that with his love of classic rock'n'roll, country and powerpop to create not only a unique sound but one that is well-nigh irresistible." **** MAVERICK

"Collum and the revolving door of Welfare Mothers have constructed something wonderful here.... File in the column marked superb." MAXIMUM VOLUME MUSIC 

"The whole album is well worth packing and carrying home." LONESOME HIGHWAY

“A good 'go to' when you want a slice of uncomplicated sophistication in your listening repertoire." 

Thursday 11 October 2018


Highly-rated Cornish psychers HANTERHIR have unveiled a brand new video ahead of their dates next week.

Taken from their widely lauded new album The Saving Of Cadan, ‘Hope Comes With Love’ soundtracks live footage filmed at an outdoor show during the summer.  An expansive and diverse concept album sung in Cornish and English and covering five sides of vinyl, The Saving Of Cadan was recorded on a llama farm and in a former Methodist chapel.

Hailing from Redruth, the band have developed their sound in isolation from the mainstream, drawing on a diverse set of influences from psych and space-rock to folk and post-punk, suggesting traces of the Psychedelic Furs, Felt, Espers, Sonic Youth and Hawkwind. 
Hanterhir have spent the summer playing gigs and festivals throughout the South-West, including Boardmasters and Harvest Gathering, and this month move further afield, to include a rare London show at The Victoria in Dalston, where they'll be joined by rejuvenated Cornish psych-punk veterans The Brainiac 5.

You can catch Hanterhir on the following dates….

20 Oct Charlie’s Bar, Redruth

21 Oct The Sussex Arms, Tunbridge Wells

22 Oct The Victoria, Dalston, London  tickets

23 Oct The Railway Hotel, Southend-on-Sea

The Saving Of Cadan is out now through Easy Action Records.

"Hanterhir have struck their own seam of sound and The Saving of Cadan is their masterwork... This is rock music at its finest and most original." The Arts Desk

"Massive psych-folk masterpiece... quite unlike anything else... Hugely impressive." ***** RNR

"Oozes occult magnificence." **** Shindig!

"A cacophony of Celtic wildness... Magnificent." ***** Record Collector 

"Avant-garde soundbites to post-punk and definitely psychedelic" 8/10 Louder Than War

"The Saving of Cadan is a monumental concept album... nothing short of amazing..."  Exposé Online

"Shimmers with rare beauty... a magical ride" *****  Music News 

"A beautiful, melodic, uplifting experience... Buy the album!" ***** 3 Songs & Out

"A hugely important album from a refreshingly inventive band..." Bliss Aquamarine

"Undoubtedly 'Made in Cornwall' but with universal appeal." Thee Psychedelicatessen

"Another one to add to the Albums of the Year list....excellent groundbreaking music" Analogue Trash Radio

Tuesday 9 October 2018


Loneliness as a sentiment seems to be a prevailing theme in my songs. I am always looking for that old lonesome feeling in a chord change or some melody line."                                                                                                                                    
Two years in the making, the debut album by Scottish songwriter Drew Morrison and his band The Darkwood follows their critically well received Tales of Love, Sadness & Rock‘n’Roll EP, described by PennyBlackmusic as “a fine first offering of enormous potential from which promises much for the forthcoming album”.

Electric-Notes Wild, released on the band's own Storm Cloud Agency Records, is a collection of 10 tracks showcasing Drew Morrison and his love of song. A questing musical soul, Morrison has described his music as being for “the lonesome fugitive within us all”.

In The Darkwood he is backed by Phil Carwardine and Martin Murray (guitars), Mike Hughes (bass, backing vocals) and Nick Steyn (drums). Despite line-up changes along the road, the band's central vision of a music touched by influences ranging from alt.country, pop and rock’n’roll, all tinged with 'golden chording', has remained focused and has realised itself into a unique sound.

At the Country Soul Sessions in London’s Soho the band are simply known as 'the house band' and have, over five years, performed with the acts that have played at the club; artists such as Rotifer, Paul McClure and The Local Heroes, Matthew Edwards and The Unfortunates, Morton Valence, Bob Collum and The Welfare Mothers, Lynette Morgan and The Blackwater Valley Boys and many, many others.

The album was recorded at Bonafide, Reservoir and Project-a-Sonic studios with guest musicians including Tim Pearson of the East Lonesome Drifters and Henry Senior from Danny and the Champions of the World.

Electric-Notes Wild is a set of songs born from innocence, experience and ultimately the faith in the powers of music to still entertain and thrill.

"With its beautiful harmonies, exquisitely-crafted arrangements and Morrison’s empathetic and literate lyrics, it is an album of exceptional quality." Pennyblackmusic

“Quality control is something Drew Morrison and The Darkwood excel at and Electric Notes Wild is the perfect example of that." Dancing About Architecture

Friday 3 August 2018


What happens when you put a bunch of musicians together in the country and leave them to their own devices?

Coalescing in the deep Cornish countryside around Redruth, free from the fashions, foibles and fripperies of the mainstream music scene, HANTERHIR grew a sound all their own around freak rock, post-punk and alt-rock woven together with the silken threads of spooky psych folk and trippy electronica and alternating between English and Cornish lyrics.

Peopled throughout this time by an extended family of numerous musicians, facilitators and hangers-on, Hanterhir remains stable at Jason (drums, percussion), Ben (guitar, vocals, keyboards), Peasy (guitar, vocals), Grant (bass, vocals), Mike (saxophone, keyboards, vocal) and Lou (flute, vocals).

“The important thing to me about the band is that we are authentically Cornish,” says Ben. “And having a Cornish name sort of solidifies that idea. Being Cornish to me doesn't mean that we ignore our influences or what we grew up with, but rather than that, we embrace it.

“The songs are all there to try and tell parts of a story,” he says of The Saving Of Cadan. “The story is about a boy, Cadan, who tries to drown himself in a lake on Carn Marth and gets saved by a wicked spirit who was cursed to the lake (The Lady of the Lake or Morwenna).”

Recorded over an extended period in a Methodist chapel, a llama farm, a cricket club and – just to be on the safe side – a conventional studio, the album is the first fruit of a relationship with internationally renowned – and
Cornwall-based – Easy Action Records. Spread over a budget-stretching 5 sides of vinyl or 2 CDs, the album is a mammoth project but, as Freddie Mercury said, "If something's worth doing, it's worth overdoing".

Having already forged a loyal following across the Southwest, Hanterhir are now turning their eyes toward the wider UK.

The Saving Of Cadan is out now on Easy Action through Cargo.

Tour dates....

20 Sept – The Old Bakery, Truro (w/ Dom Duff)  tickets
28 Sept – Harvest Gathering Festival, Newquay   tickets
21 Oct – The Sussex Arms, Tunbridge Wells
22 Oct – The Victoria, Dalston, London  tickets
23 Oct – The Railway Hotel, Southend on Sea

"Hanterhir have struck their own seam of sound and The Saving of Cadan is their masterwork... This is rock music at its finest and most original." The Arts Desk

"A cacophony of Celtic wildness... Magnificent." ***** Record Collector 

"Avant-garde soundbites to post-punk and definitely psychedelic" 8/10 Louder Than War

"The Saving of Cadan is a monumental concept album... nothing short of amazing..."  Exposé Online

"Shimmers with rare beauty... a magical ride" *****  Music News 

"A beautiful, melodic, uplifting experience... Buy the album!" ***** 3 Songs & Out

"A hugely important album from a refreshingly inventive band..." Bliss Aquamarine

"Undoubtedly 'Made in Cornwall' but with universal appeal." Thee Psychedelicatessen

"Another one to add to the Albums of the Year list....excellent groundbreaking music" Analogue Trash Radio

Thursday 2 August 2018


Perhaps best known as a member of globe-straddling folk-rock band TWO DOLLAR BASH, Tony Rose now gets around to delivering his first solo album.

Medicine Tunes was recorded in a house in rural France in the spring of 2017, Tony being joined by long-time musical colleagues Geir Voie (mandolin), Sean Condron (banjo, guitar, slide, bass, harmonica, mandola, backing vocals), and Stéphane Doucerain (drums, percussion), and the album’s producer Mark Mulholland (guitar, mandola, bouzouki, backing vocals). The songs for the album were laid down in a single session, with all the basic tracks played live together.

While the songs evidently deal with feelings of loss, confusion and despair, they also explore how these can eventually evolve towards something new and brighter through the healing effects of music, love and friendship.

“I wrote most of the songs on Medicine Tunes when I was going through some very troubled times,” explains Tony. “I found myself alone and falling. It was a case of sink or swim. I needed something to keep me afloat. Writing and singing these songs became my medicine rituals, a kind of spiritual healing and a way to keep breathing. It's difficult to explain. I was in France gigging with Two Dollar Bash and I played the songs for Mark Mulholland. He thought them worth recording and organised a session at his studio with some old friends. The finished album feels like the conclusion of a long journey that started in a very dark place and ended somewhere brighter.”

Born in Scotland in 1969, Tony spent his youth busking on the streets of Glasgow and forming bands with school friends, Brendan O'Hare (Teenage Fanclub, Dark Globes) and Joe Armstrong. Moving to Edinburgh, Tony and Joe hooked up with Mark Mulholland, and the three began a life of travel that continues to this day, criss-crossing Europe, settling sporadically to reconvene in France, Ireland, Berlin or Holland.

Having settled in Prague for much of the 90s, Tony eventually hooked up with Joe and Mark in Berlin where Two Dollar Bash were born. Releasing four albums, the band have toured widely across Europe and North America, playing SXSW in Austin for three consecutive years.

In 2010, Tony returned to Prague, where he continues to play both solo, with The Band of Jakeys, and as a duo with Geir Voie. His songs have been performed by many artists in Europe, America and beyond, and a disc of recordings of cover versions - Roll High & Roll Good - is included with Medicine Tunes.

Wednesday 11 April 2018


The past is a foreign country, or so they say. No doubt Last Great Dreamers would agree with that. Barely 18 months has passed since their last album – their first all new full-length since their 2014 rebirth – and now the UK power-pop rockers step up with a freshness and fire that would put many new bands to shame.

Holed up in Oxfordshire’s Henwood Studios with producer Pete Brown (son of Joe, brother of Sam), original Dreamers Marc Valentine and Slyder, together with drummer Denley Slade and bassist Steve Fielding, have laid down their most complete and accomplished album yet. 13th Floor Renegades comprises eleven infectious punk-pop floorshakers, replete with dynamic shoutalong choruses and more hooks than audition day for a particularly piratical panto season. Power-pop crunch and effortlessly melodic riffing rule the roost, letting up only occasionally for the twinkling mandolin of folky Faces-ness.

“Everything fell into place at the right time,” explains Marc. “We started a Pledge campaign for the album, which had a fantastic response. The fans’ involvement was truly incredible and their generosity never ceases to amaze us. Hopefully with this album we get to repay their faith. It’s really been an organic process from start to finish, with a few twists and turns along the way, but we’re really proud of what we’ve managed to achieve in a short space of time.”

Originally coming together in London during the early 90s, Last Great Dreamers quickly became darlings of the glam-punk scene centred around Soho. Gaining props for debut album Retrosexual, earning a nomination for Best New Band in the prestigious Kerrang! awards, and supporting major US touring bands, they couldn’t face off the juggernaut of Britpop and went on hiatus.

Since their return, they’ve released two albums – the rarities set Crash Landing In Teenage Heaven and the all new Transmissions From Oblivion – and toured widely, both as headliners and support to the likes of Cherie Currie, Bernie Tormé and The Quireboys. 

13th Floor Renegades is out on Friday 13 April through Ray Records. They play the following dates...

 Thu 12 April             LONDON The Black Heart 
Fri 13 April              CANNOCK The Station
Sat 14 April              BRIDGEND Hobos
Sun 15 April             CAMBRIDGE Portland Arms
Wed 18 April            WAKEFIELD Black Mass
Thu 19 April             GRIMSBY Yardbirds
Fri 20 April               CARLISLE Club Rock
Sat 21 April              GLASGOW Nice’n’Sleazy
Sun 22 April           NEWCASTLE Trillians
Fri 25 May               DERBY Bearded Theory Festival
Sat 26 May              BROMSGROVE Breaking Bands Festival

"They belong in the Rock'n'Roll Premier League...” Maximum Volume Music
“It’s a triumph of an album…4.5” Pure Rawk
“Every (and I mean EVERY) song is an absolute cracker…” Louderthanwar
"This album is truly a sign of a totally rejuvenated band.” The Soul Of A Clown
“Their finest, most accomplished album to date." Uber Rock