Monday, 25 May 2015

Sugar Ape | Club Night | Review


On the first Wednesday of every month, The Bodega, located in Nottingham, opens its doors to Sugar Ape, an alternative club night with some extra entertainment thrown into the mix. Alternative nights seem to have become more popular in recent years, proving that clubbing isn't just for those who prefer dance music.

Sugar Ape plays a mix of pop punk, rock and metal while also having themes such as Mario Kart, beach party and even a onesie themed night. We headed down on the 6th of May, a Mario-Kart themed night, to find out what Sugar Ape has to offer.

Upon entry, which was £2, and up a staircase we were greeted with free shots, which is never a bad thing when you’re a poor student. We also received a cup full of free sweets from the bar, in line with the Mario-Kart theme. The venue was also a perfect size with the dance floor being spacious enough to hold plenty of people without being smothered in a sea of bodies throughout the night. Upon entering the dance floor was uninhabited apart from a few eager souls. However, after about 15 minutes Sugar Ape soon started to fill up with people swiftly arriving to liven up their Wednesday night.


Sugar Ape offers a great selection of drinks. You can buy two Jaegerbombs for £3.50, singles are £2 and doubles are £3. We also tried Sugar Ape’s own drink, Gorilla Piss which is a secret formula that vaguely resembles orange juice and lemonade. The drink comes in a pitcher at £8 which is a great choice to share with your mates.

The music at Sugar Ape is great. They play all sorts from Set Your Goals, Sum 41, The All American Rejects to Drowning Pool, Slipknot and Linkin Park. If you’re the person that grew up on Kerrang and Scuzz you’ll have the greatest time with Panic! At the Disco, My Chemical Romance and Bowling For Soup all featuring in the playlist. However, they don’t just play rock, metal and pop punk, Sugar Ape throw in the occasional bout of dubstep and hip hop.


The Mario Kart theme at Sugar Ape was awesome.  They also included a TV in the corner so you could play Mario Kart while listening to great music.  This was a nice touch and meant that when your feet started to hurt from dancing too much, you didn’t just have to sit down unoccupied in the corner.

Overall, Sugar Ape was a really fun night. The music was great, the drinks were well priced, complete with an enthralling atmosphere. It was also refreshing to go to a club night that played enjoyable music while also having a unique theme that gave the night an extra exciting twist. My sole complaint is that it’s only  occurs once a month.


The next Sugar Ape night is on the 3rd of June. Check out the Facebook event here

Up & Coming Bands | Powernap


Earlier this year, Montreal band, Powernap released their debut EP Oreosmith. The band are a side project of The Saint Catherines singer Hugo Mudie who also provides the vocals for Powernap. Oreosmith is a collection of fast paced punk rock songs that never run low on energy while also attaining engaging and uplifting riffs. We asked Hugo a few questions about Oreosmith and all it has to offer...

WHERE ARE YOU FROM?
I’m from Montreal. 

HOW DID YOUR BAND FORM?
We wanted to play songs together to have a reason to see each other.

DESCRIBE YOUR SOUND IN FIVE WORDS FOR SOMEONE WHO MIGHT NOT HAVE HEARD YOUR MUSIC BEFORE
veggie dogs with hot peppers.

YOU RECENTLY RELEASED YOUR NEW EP 'OREOSMITH', TELL US A BIT ABOUT IT...
It’s our first 6 songs. The artwork is orange and blue. If you put it in a record playing device it plays the music that we recorded. It sounds nothing like this.

WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE SONG FROM OREOSMITH AND WHY? 
Live Slow, Die Whenever. 'Cause it’s a good advice.

IF YOU COULD TOUR ANYWHERE IN THE WORLD WHERE WOULD IT BE?
Jamaïca, I’d love to smoke weed there, even though I don’t smoke weed here.

DO YOU PREFER RECORDING OR PLAYING LIVE?
Recording, the thing with playing live is that it involves speaking with other bands about gear and booking agents which I don’t care about, and also, you have to go to bed late. I don’t like that either. I can record during the day and not talk about much, cuz I’m too busy signing and faking that I need to rest my voice when I’m not signing.


WHAT ARE YOUR TOP FIVE FAVOURITE ALBUMS AT THE MOMENT?
1989 by Taylor Swift,  Yours To Keep de Albert Hammond Jr, Ariane ZIta EP, Acidrap by Chance The Rapper,  Bloom by Beach House.

Oreosmith is out now via Asian Man / Klownhouse Recordz. Listen to it in full below: 



Powernap's Facebook 

Saturday, 23 May 2015

Get Up Go | Interview


If you're looking for some new pop punk to listen to over the summer months, you have come to the right place. Manchester four-piece, Get Up Go, are just about to release their sophomore EP, You Jump, I Jump. The EP consists of three songs which incorporate raw energy, infectious melodies and thrilling riffs. We asked Get Up Go a few questions about what we could expect from their new EP... 

HOW ARE YOU GUYS?
We're fantastic with a capital F! How could we be any lower? I mean, we just dropped a new video, we have an awesome new EP coming out and we are still rocking out with every waking breath.


HOW DID YOU COME UP WITH THE NAME FOR YOU JUMP, I JUMP?
Anders. It's always Anders. He comes up with the names we just pick one that we like. He probably has some sort of soppy meaningful reason for it, or its a line from one of his favourite rom-coms but we all liked it. It's kind of a reminder that being in a band is the epitome of teamwork and if any of these guys said jump, the rest would ask "how high?", no matter what.


TELL US A BIT ABOUT THE RECORDING PROCESS...
It was really fun, as per usual. Granted, we had a couple of late nights and struggles with arrangement and such but on the whole we really love the whole process. We also noticed how much better at it we had gotten since last time. We were a lot better rehearsed and much more relaxed going in. It shows through in the recordings. We had no stress and lots of laughs.


IF YOU COULD SUM UP YOU JUMP, I JUMP IN 5 WORDS, WHAT WOULD THEY BE?
If you're looking for a statement we'd say... Fun loving, good time tunes!
Or were you looking for separate words? In that case Big, fast, bouncy, uplifting, singalong.


WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE SONG FROM YOU JUMP, I JUMP AND WHY?
Collectively I feel it's 'BK, Like OMG!' Hence the reason we chose to shoot a video for it. It's about something we all hold dear to our hearts and that love will never EVER die. Not ever!


HOW DID YOU GO ABOUT PICKING THE ARTWORK FOR YOU JUMP, I JUMP?
We did what we always do, butt heads for about a week before someone says "Let's do this!" Then we all agree. We made it ourselves. We like to put that extra touch into the releases because we're proud and we want to show our creativity within every aspect of what we do.

You Jump, I Jump is out June 1st. Check out the video for BK, Like OMG! below:



Get Up Go's Facebook | Twitter | Bandcamp

Friday, 22 May 2015

Up & Coming Pop Punk Bands | Storyteller


Today for our up and coming post, we have Welsh band, Storyteller. The guys have just released their new EP, 'A Place By Your Hopes', which was recorded at Longwave Studios (Decade, Save Your Breath) and mastered by Troy Glesner at Spectre ( Neck Deep, Being as an Ocean). The EP is a mix of fast paced, intoxicating songs, perfect for fans of Knuckle Puck, Trash Boat or Such Gold. We asked vocalist, Finn Orrell, a few question to get to know a bit more about Storyteller and their new EP...

WHERE ARE YOU FROM?
We live in South Wales! We're all scattered though. Half of us live an hours drive away from each other.
We're based in Swansea mostly, that's where we practice. None of us live there.

TELL US A BIT ABOUT STORYTELLER'S HISTORY, HOW DID YOU GUYS FORM?
Me and [lead guitarist] Mason were friends in School. We used to come in to registration and get stoked on bands like Such Gold, Four Year Strong, The Story So Far etc. and one day we decided "we can do that!". We were probably like 15 at the time. We really wanted to be Four Year Strong so we played Easycore music for a while with some other school friends. We totally couldn't do it, we sucked to begin with. Then I met [rhythm guitarist] Alex through mutual friends one day and we were hanging out in some guys car and he put a Transit CD on and I was like "dude I love Transit!" he was like "no way?", then I found out he played guitar and I asked him to join my band. We had some other members for a while until me and Mason met our drummer Kyle in college and he joined the permanent lineup. We're actually down a bassist at the moment so holla if you play.


YOU'RE ABOUT TO DROP YOUR NEW EP A PLACE BY YOUR HOPES, TELL US A BIT ABOUT IT...
Well, although it's only a 5 track EP, we sort of wrote it like an album. All the songs kind of fit together. The lyrics are about a certain 6 months of my life that weren't a good time for me. Each song sort of takes place in chronological order, looking at the events from whatever viewpoint I was looking at them from at the time. I think we pretty much wrote each song after the other so it does make sense. It's quite fast paced and aggressive, but the lyrics are mostly sad.

IF YOU DESCRIBE A PLACE BY YOUR HOPES IN THREE WORDS WHAT WOULD THEY BE?
That's a hard one! I hate when you get asked stuff like this in job interviews.
I'd say it's say it's aggressive, honest, sad.

WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE SONG FROM A PLACE BY YOUR HOPES AND WHY?
Confines. It's probably the darkest song and it's got this massive part at the end where there's about 4 guitar layers and 3 vocal layers and it's just like this massive wall of sound.

HOW DID YOU GO ABOUT CHOOSING THE ARTWORK FOR THE EP?
I actually designed it myself! We were originally going to have a snake coming up out of the water in the girls palms but I couldn't draw a snake so I did a house instead.

 IF YOU COULD PLAY A SHOW WITH ANY BAND WHO WOULD IT BE?
Probably Slayer. How sick would that be?

WHAT ARE YOUR TOP FIVE FAVOURITE POP PUNK ALBUMS?
This is a difficult one too because I don't listen to a lot of Pop-Punk bands anymore. Brand New - Your Favourite Weapon will always be one of the best. I still listen to TSSF's What You Don't See record, and their new one is tite. I'd say Floral Green by Title Fight and Colourmeinkindness by Basement, although they're not really Pop-Punk albums.. they're kinda in the scene though.

A Place By Your Hopes is out now! Check it out below:



Storyteller's Facebook | Twitter | Tumblr

Thursday, 21 May 2015

Trash Boat | Brainwork | Track By Track Guide


Though only a year young, UK pop punk newcomers Trash Boat have made little short of a flying start. The St Albans based quintet came bursting out of the blocks in July 2014 with their debut E.P, the aptly titled ‘Look Alive’. Boasting buoyant guitar licks and vocal melodies custom built for impregnation on the temporal lobe, ‘Look Alive’ saw Trash Boat quickly capturing attention. A flurry of live activity followed, the band hitting the road to share stages alongside Me Vs. Hero, Light You Up, Roam, Homebound, Six Time Champion and Knuckle Puck. They then secured a sought-after place on the Hopeless roster, alongside such well respected names as All Time Low, Neck Deep, Taking Back Sunday and New Found Glory. Trash Boat have been hard at work on the follow up to debut EP, with brand new E.P ‘Brainwork’, which just saw release on 18th May. Here vocalist Tobi goes through the work, track by track… 

"Compared to our debut release ‘Look Alive’ we actually wrote this EP fairly quickly. Our first EP was still fresh in our minds and we felt this was going to be a solid continuation of something we were pretty happy with and had received a really good response from so far.
Sound wise we were really going for that chunk, as if a hardcore band had just done a pop punk album, I’m stoked on the tone, I mean…listen to Taylor, that intro is phat as.

TAYLOR
Taylor was the first part of a longer song that I was writing lyrics for. When I laid down demo vocals over the riff we were trying out, it sounded huge and we were really pleased, we decided to keep it short as it was a perfect introduction to Brainwork, as it builds up the energy nicely.
It was the first song we heard with all the instruments recorded in the studio and it got us really excited as we’d been listening to our scratchy bedroom demos for so long, the difference was awesome and it really bought the tracks to life.
The lyrics are a reference to a certain group of medical ‘professionals’ who continuously let me down over the years, I will be writing more songs on this topic in the future, but for now it’s just this snippet.

SAVING FACE
I was torn as to whether I liked Saving Face at first, but it has grown on me to the point where it is nearly my favourite track! It was originally going to be in the same key as ‘Perspective’ (I was suggesting this) but I’m so glad we kept it lower as it’s in a far more comfortable register live!
I try to make an effort to not ramble on about relationships, as its way too cliché and the topic doesn’t really hold enough significance to me to write multiple songs about, and that’s kind of what Saving Face is about: my general apathy towards relationships, my inability to voice my anxieties about them and how it has affected each subsequent relationship as they randomly appear in my life.

PERSPECTIVE (Check out the video here)
Perspective (lyrically) is probably the most emotive track on the EP andit took the longest to write as it was chopped and changed a lot. It was the last song we did and the studio was fast approaching, we were spending hours every day trying to get it right and we were close to being sick of, even on the way to the studio! Once we heard it recorded properly and started tracking vocals though we knew the hard work had paid off, banger!
The lyrics cover a specific day a few years back where I was woken from what was supposed to be routine joint surgery to having a group of doctors around me with varying sombre looks on their faces, along with my parents who had already been told the shitty news that I wasn’t going to be getting better anytime soon. It was pretty tough, it exposed me to emotional aspects of myself and my parents that I had never seen before. It was pretty overwhelming being confronted with it all at once, whilst coming to terms with the fact that I just had to deal with it. Lucky for me though I have some pretty awesome friends and family who were all there to help me slap a fat smiley face sticker on the whole situation!

AS SEEN ON SCREEN
As Seen On Screen is probably my favourite instrumentally, it’s got some real fucking bounce to it and is so much fun to jam live. That song just fell together like it was written for us, barely altered, it was pretty much there in the first draft.
I didn’t want this song to be another sad jam so the lyrics aren’t as brutally emotional as the rest of them, so it keeps up the pace of being honest and aggressive in some respects, but it’s much less personal. From the age of 15 I’ve been drifting from one mind numbing job to another, under the guise of finding a career as that seemed to be the thing to do. I felt I was too young to pursue higher education, along with the maturity it required, so I held off on going to uni and got a job. I know in some respects it can seem as though I’m coming off as ungrateful, I was always appreciative of the fact I had steady work, but I was always considering the fact that I could be doing shit like this for the majority of my life and that thought scared the shit out of me! So I saved up enough to support myself while doing band stuff and wrote a fucking song about it, chasin’ the dream.

ELEVEN
Eleven is my favourite tune overall, the energy is through the roof and that’s what I’m all about, getting a room full of people to kick off and throw themselves off stuff into stuff, expect the energy to continue to rise in our future records.
Again, this was a tune that really fell together, only some swapping of the structure closer to the studio. The lyrics to this song poured out, it was tough picking the right ones as I have a bunch more that will be the topic of some tunes in the future, they mean a great deal to me, but I’m afraid their content can’t be explained as I don’t feel it is my place.

Brainwork is out now! Check out Trash Boat's new video for Eleven below:

Tuesday, 19 May 2015

Up & Coming Pop Punk Bands | Sweet Little Machine



For Today's up and coming pop punk band post, we're bringing to you Sweet Little Machine who hail from Sheffield. The band have recently been in the studio recording a number of singles which they are releasing over the next few weeks. Sweet Little Machine have already released 2 singles; Save Our Bones and We Used To Own These Playgrounds. Both songs incorporate a mix of summery pop punk, both with unforgettable melodies. The two singles exert an abundance of energy mixed with catchy riffs. We asked the band a few questions about their new music, whether they prefer recording or playing live and how their guitarist/ vocalist Alex ended up singing on stage with Green Day...  

WHERE ARE YOU FROM?
Sheffield, England!

HOW DID YOU FORM?
It all started from going to school together and growing up being in different bands that all played together around Sheffield. Over time people left those bands for various reasons and slowly we all started coming together to form 'Sweet Little Machine'. 


It was a bit of a strange beginning. There never seemed to be a decision about starting the band together, it just started happening. At the same time it was quite strange for us as it was like starting all over again. We were writing, gigging and creating a band for the first time together. However, it seems to have turned out for the best and to become 'the band built on broken bands'. 


HOW DID YOU COME UP WITH YOUR BAND NAME?
There are many different theories of where the name originated from. My favourite is that it's named after a certain adult toy commonly sold in shops like Ann Summers. 


YOU'VE RECENTLY BEEN IN THE RECORDING STUDIO, TELL US A BIT ABOUT WHAT YOU'VE BEEN UP TO...
We have been in the studio with Jim Pinder at Treehouse Studios recording a bunch of singles we're going to release over the next few weeks, the first of which being 'Save Our Bones' which is available now, following up with the second release "We Used to Own These Playgrounds". As well as that we have been gigging, making a few music videos for the tracks and finishing writing some more songs we're going to record in June time.


YOUR VOCALIST/GUITARIST ALEX GOT PULLED ON STAGE BY BILLIE JOE ARMSTRONG TO SING WITH GREEN DAY AT WEMBLEY AND SHEFFIELD ARENA, HOW DID THAT COME ABOUT?
Each time Green Day play, they pull people out of the audience to sing/play a song with them. While at Sheffield arena, Alex was lucky enough to be pulled onstage and get to play Longview with them before being crowd surfed away into the audience!


DO YOU PREFER RECORDING OR PLAYING LIVE?
We have always been more of a live band than studio band. Not because we prefer either of the two, just because there's something incredible about sharing what you have worked so hard to create, whilst being in the same room as others. 


What is amazing about being in the studio is that's where the songs really become their own and they get their own personalities. What was great about working with Jim was he pushed us as far as he could, just to make sure that the recording's were the best they possibly could be. After all the writing and recording has been pieced together and you get to listen back to the finished product, it's probably the closest way we can listen to our own music as if it was an outside point of view and we get to really critic our own songs.

However there is still something you cant take away from getting to play live, like the moments just before you go on and your getting that rush of adrenalin from not knowing how its going to go, how the audience will react and if people will even like you. When you do get to play an amazing show and the crowd gets really involved its a felling that  can't really be taken away from you whatever kind of day you have had, and even though we have played these songs hundreds of times by now, what through practising, recording and playing live, its just a feeling that never seams to get old. 


IF YOU COULD PLAY A SHOW WITH ANY BAND WHO WOULD IT BE?
We're really digging a band called "I Am The Avalanche". Not only do we love their music, we think we'd fit pretty well on a bill with them! Their shows are really fun and energetic, you can sing along to every song, which is what we like in music and the direction that we try to take our live shows in.


WHAT ARE YOU TOP FIVE FAVOURITE POP PUNK ALBUMS?
Well split this one up and do one each and then one we have all been inspired by! 

Alex: Danger Days - My Chemical Romance 

Adam: Beautiful Let-down - Switchfoot

Lucy: Infinity on High - Fall Out Boy  

Joel: Dookie - Green Day 

Bands Choice: American Idiot - Green Day 

Each one of our individual albums have a place in our hearts. Each of these artists and albums have given inspiration to us in the music that we write for the songs like "Saves Our Bones" and "Playgrounds". And as for the group album that's the one album that we've all been inspired by and got us into pop punk. 


Listen to Sweet Little Machine's new single, We Used To Own These Playgrounds, above!


Sweet Little Machine's Facebook | Twitter | Soundcloud


Monday, 18 May 2015

Up & Coming Pop Punk Bands | Never Too Late


Pop punk bands can be found all over the world. One such example is Never Too Late who hail from Brazil. The band have just released their new EP 'Premiere' which is packed with five songs of poppy melodies contrasted with heavy and exhilarating riffs. We asked them a few questions about their new EP, the story behind their band name and what it's like writing songs in a different language...

WHERE ARE YOU FROM?
All of us live in the same city: Sao Paulo, Brazil!

HOW DID YOU FORM?
The band was formed up in 2013 with Gustavo (vocals), Thiago (drums) and Rodrigo (bass). Jonas (guitars) joined us a couple months later, followed up by Tonon (guitars/backings) and here we are! We're all friends in common and we met each other from quite some time ago in the past, so it was easy to gather the idea of forming a band together.

HOW DID YOU COME UP WITH YOUR BAND NAME?
This name came from a tattoo on Gustavo's arm that says "Never Too Old" and after some debate we've finally got to "Never Too Late". That's basically our main goal as a band: it's "Never Too Late" to do what we like the most, whenever we want, and enjoy every second of it.

YOU'VE JUST RELEASED YOUR NEW EP PREMIERE, TELL US A BIT ABOUT IT...
Premiere marks the first time that we wrote in English. It was a big change to us, and a big step forward too, now we can reach many more people and spread our message to the whole world.We worked with the Brazilian producer Gab Scatolin to record these songs, who's played guitar for some great Brasilian pop punk bands ( Feijão com Arroz, Cueio Limão) and helped us very much on reaching the final result.

WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE SONG FROM PREMIERE AND WHY?
I think it's very difficult to choose one favourite song from the entire EP, each song has a different message, a different feeling, every song in this record means a lot to us, but if this means something, our first music video from Premiere will be from "May the Force be With You"

THIS IS YOU FIRST RELEASE IN A DIFFERENT LANGUAGE, WAS IT A CHALLENGE TO WRITE THE SONGS IN ANOTHER LANGUAGE?
Yes, certainly it was a big deal because this isn't a language that we use a lot in our daily routine. This is the kind of challenge that was worth all the effort at the end of the process. We're very proud of what we have made for this EP!

IF YOU COULD PLAY A SHOW ANYWHERE IN THE WORLD WHERE WOULD IT BE?
It would be awesome being able to do a gig at Warped Tour, alongside the bands we like.

WHAT ARE YOUR TOP FIVE FAVOURITE POP PUNK ALBUMS?
Thiago: The Story So Far - What You Don't See
Mauricio: Blink 182 - Take of Your Pants
Jonas: Four year strong - Enemy of The World
Gustavo :New Found Glory – Resurrection
Rodrigo: New Found Glory - Catalyst

Premiere is out now! Check it out below:



Never Too Late's Facebook | Bandcamp | Youtube | Instagram