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Luke’s Alphabet Tour – O: Orange at Islington O2 Academy – 26th July 2012

 
By on Thursday, 9th August 2012 at 2:00 pm
 

Remember when pop-punk was huge? About ten years ago you couldn’t move for Blink 182, Sum 41 and Offspring fans in their brightly coloured hoodies and crazy hair (as long as it abided by school rules, of course). However, we must remember that music is constantly evolving, and a decade later there simply isn’t a buzz around these fart-joke-loving pogo merchants.

That said, one of the biggest of the pop-punk bunch are playing one of the biggest venues in the UK. Although, they were supposed to be. Unfortunately, Blink 182 cancelled their appearance at London’s O2 arena so it is up to LA’s Orange to pick up the pieces at the O2 Academy Islington.

Don’t fool yourself, though. The 10,000 fans with Blink tickets have not descended on Islington this evening. In fact barely 50 members of the pop-punk contingent made it out tonight. But just with so many things in life, it’s not the size that counts…

Tonight’s crowd are as sprightly as it’s possible for a 14-year-old to be on a Thursday night. Jumping, shouting and arm flailing are must-have moves in your arsenal for an Orange gig, and certain areas of the audience possess huge stockpiles of these party weapons. The four men on stage are also packing heat for an evening of elation, but unfortunately they don’t back it up with musical prowess.

Staying at the poppier end of pop-punk, the Californian quartet are on a headline UK tour after previous success supporting the likes of Zebrahead and Bowling For Soup. Frontman Joe Dexter riles the crowd with his best Billy Joe impression and a bucketload of “whoas”, “yeahs” and “heys”, but it’s a situation of style over substance. The PG-rated performance ticks all the boxes in the foundation exam for How To Excite Already Excitable Teenagers, but it doesn’t go any deeper than the paper-thin surface hiding the mediocrity.

Dexter is the face of the band and the girls love him for it, leaning over and peering into their eyes making them weak at the knees during ‘Resist’ and ‘Hold on to Your Heart’. But the ‘Orange salute’ – also known as the OK hand gesture – is another example of shoehorning in more gimmicks to try and make themselves more appealing, and hiding the overarching dullness. Something the crowd aren’t wise to, but it’s only a matter of time before this new strand of pop-punk fizzles out before they get a glimpse of the O2 arena.

 

Orange unsignedAct with Sony Ericsson Finalists – Scarlet Harlots

 
By on Thursday, 15th January 2009 at 11:59 am
 

Scarlot Harlots (Side)You may have noticed that here at TGTF we’ve got slightly addicted to the Orange unsignedAct with Sony Ericsson. All the bands seem pretty amazing, and today we got a chance to speak to Scarlet Harlots, who were voted out a few weeks back by the judges, but have since been bought back by public vote – don’t you just love democracy?

We sat down with Tom from Scarlet Harlots and asked him about the upcoming finals and more…

Do you think they can recreate wild card Envy and Other Sins win last year and come back and take the title?

We reckon there’s a few contenders in for the ‘title’. The wildcard thing could either be in our favour or really against us, in the sense that we had big support to bring us back in the vote back show already, but that could stop people voting for us again, as their pence is spent already! The title is there for the taking though, just as long as everyone comes out showing their Harlot colours!

You’ve all got quite a quirky style – do you have any particular style icons?

We’re happy to bargain and rummage. Any particular style icons? Maybe Rab. C.Nesbitt, Oscar Wilde and ourselves 15 years ago? We met this guy the other week, Johnny Blue Eyes, he had some proper good garms.

Will you be attending the Blur reunion gig at Hyde Park in July? (Since Alex James is a judge and all..)

Who has that sorta money? We’d be there if Alex James invited us and Bigger Than Barry wasn’t on!

Before unsignedAct, what were your day jobs? (if you had one of course…)

Before unsignedAct we promoted parties, studied Fine Art and played our tunes.

Want to get more of a feel for what Scarlet Harlots really sound like? Have a watch and a listen below:

 

Orange unsignedAct with Sony Ericsson finalists – Hip Parade

 
By on Wednesday, 14th January 2009 at 11:13 pm
 

Hip Parade (side)Suprisingly, even though Hip Parade have been around on the Glasgow music scene for over four years, and have yet to score themselves a record deal.

However, this hasn’t stopped the four some getting through to the last five on this this year’s Orange unsignedAct with Sony Ericsson. We sat down with Hip Parade frontman Rob Shah to see what

You’ve been touring for about 4 years on the live circuit, and sound pretty much like the real deal – why do you think you’ve never got a record deal?

It did become frustrating at times, but it’s really hard to break through now a days with the credit crunch and all. Being from Glasgow too, we’re coming from a really saturated music scene. It’s hard to get noticed.

What’s one thing everyone should bring with them to one of your gigs?

A friend…

Do you guys hang out with any of the other artists behind the scenes?

Yeah, we get on amazingly with all the other acts. It’s been really sad watching them go one by one. We really missed Luva Anna when they went out, they were amazing guys!

What bands / acts (outside of Orange unsignedAct) do you love listening to at the moment?

Personally I can’t stop listening to New Adventures. They’re awesome! Collectively its Kings Of Leon who dominates the speakers in the tour bus!

Want to get more of a feel for what Hip Parade really sound like? Have a watch and a listen below:

 

Orange unsignedAct with Sony Ericsson – The Finalists

 
By on Monday, 12th January 2009 at 6:33 pm
 

Orange unsignedAct with Sony Ericsson - JudgesThe search for the U.K’s best unsigned artist is nearing its end this January as Channel 4’s hit show, Orange unsignedAct with Sony Ericsson, ever approaches the anticipated live final in a couple of weeks time. Later this week Phil will be bringing you lucky readers interviews with the finalists of the show, but before that, let me give you a little background on the competition labelled ‘the indie X Factor’.

The show, which airs every Sunday at 12:30pm on Channel 4, is presented by tousle-haired XFMer Alex Zane and fittingly comes complete with a star-studded judging panel consisting of Blur bassist come cheese enthusiast, Alex James, DJ slash TV presenter, Lauren Laverne and record-label maestro Simon Gavin. Travelling the nation, the judges encountered tonnes of unsigned artists hoping to gain the Universal Records deal that is tastefully up for grabs – along with a nice £60,000 to boot. They saw the good, the bad and down right evil – but with a little help from the public they managed to nail it down to four artists – Bo Bruce, Hip Parade, Tommy Reilly and Toby Sebastian. The quartet will battle it out over the next couple of weeks alongside a lucky fifth act, Scarlet Harlots, who were revoted back into the show Sunday by us viewers (keeping up?).

So, to help you decide who you’ll be voting to put through to the grand finale on January 25th, let me give you a little background on the five artists left in the competition.

Bo Bruce (side)Bo Bruce

Don’t be fooled by Bo’s feisty front (she’s famously had a spat with judge Lauren Laverne on the show). The Wiltshire singer-songwriter contrastingly possesses an angelic voice, who’s folky pop has seen her gain a coveted place in the semi-final.

Hip ParadeHip Parade

Indie Glaswegian lads Hip Parade have already gained support slots with Revered and the Makers and Zane Lowe in their active 4 year career – but the band have yet to bag a record deal. They’ll be hoping to get just that, though, this January if you pick up the phone and vote for them this week!

Tommy Reilly (side)Tommy Reilly

Hip Parade aren’t the only Glasgow-based artist in the show this year – acoustic singer-songwriter Tommy Reilly also calls the Scottish city home. Reilly’s Bob Dylan influenced pop has certainly been a hit with the judges on the show – but what about you?

Toby SebastianToby Sebastian

Toby Sebastian could potentially win the prize for the youngest contender to ever have entered the competition at just 16 – but his acoustic soul has certainly got him far – to the semi-finals, infact. Certainly a brooding talent, Toby’s cites Damien Rice and Otis Redding as just two of his influences.

Scarlot HarlotsScarlet Harlots

Despite Lauren Laverne’s protests, Scarlet Harlots were eventually voted out of the competition by the judges a few weeks back. Sunday’s show, however, saw the experimental punk-pop troupe voted back in by a seemingly adoring public. Can Scarlet Harlots recreate last year’s wild card Envy and Other Sins’ win, and come back triumphant to take the title?

 

Daily Roundup / Wednesday 17th December 2008

 
By on Wednesday, 17th December 2008 at 6:41 pm
 

Scarlot HarlotsIt seems everyone’s putting out their “best of 2008” lists, with The Wombats (pictured above) being the latest ones to do so. They’ve tipped Scarlet Harlots (pictured right) for the top next year, naming a new band that has yet to appear on many Proclaiming their love for the band and tipping them for success after mentoring them on T4’s Orange unsignedAct, singer Murf declared, “I thought you were going to be good before you even picked up an instrument.” Endorsement from one of the most popular bands of 2008 clearly made Scarlet Harlots’ day with frontman Sam commenting “to say that we could go on tour with The Wombats, that’s a massive compliment and has given me a rod of confidence!” Catch them on ‘Orange unsignedAct with Sony Ericsson’ on T4 at 12:20pm on Sunday.

You may have noticed recently that we’ve started including ticket links on some posts announcing new tours and stuff – the likes of See Tickets, Ticketweb, Ticketmaster and co. However, we’ve recently come across needtickets.com, which seems a great way to find out which ticket sellers have tickets left for a tour and who doesn’t. It seems a great way to find out what all the ticket sellers are up to, and how much they’re charging.

The only downside? The search facility – I searched for Hockey (after yesterday’s tour post about their new tour), and it came up with gigs for all of these gigs: Hockey, Bear Hands, Hockey & Bear Hands, Hockey + Bear Hands, Hockey & Passion Pit, Hockey / Passion Pit, Hockey And Bear Hands, Hockey And Passion Pit, Hockey/passion Pit/bear Hands, Hockey, Passion Pit, Bear Hands, Hockey&passion Pit With Bear Hands, Hockey, Passion Pit And Bear Hands. Whatever’s wrong with just one listing? Still, I’m sure they’re working out some niggles, but keep an eye out – in coming months they may well turn out to be a great resource that we point you to more often.

Lady Sovereign (side)If I’m honest, I’m not a huge fan of Lady Sovereign. Sure, she’s easy on the eyes, but a bit too chav for me. However, her new video (below) is, well, *amazing*, and the song’s quite good too. The press release comments that new album Jigsaw tells Sov’s rollercoaster story of the last two years with “her usual honesty, genre-defying beats and punchy, zest-fresh lyrics. Only, this time around as well as rapping, Sov does something a little bit different; she sings”. Watch below, enjoy and join me in holding out for her new album being a bit more dance based than chav based. A free MP3 of the track (seemingly a different mix) is also below.

MP3: Lady Sovereign – I Got You Dancing

[youtube:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WkyAqxccU8M]

 
 
 

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There Goes The Fear is where we tell you about the latest music, gigs, and tours we love and think you should too.

We love music that has its heart on its sleeve, tells a story, swims around our head all day or makes us dance like no-one's watching.

TGTF was edited by Mary Chang, based in Washington, DC.

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