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Quickfire Questions #52: The Orielles (formerly The Oreoh!s)

 
By on Monday, 30th September 2013 at 11:00 am
 

Update: as of 26/11/2013, they’re now called The Orielles.

Halifax band The Oreoh!s – made up of sisters Esme (lead vocals / bass) and Sid Hand-Halford (drums) and Henry Wade (guitar) – have been building up loads of practical yet impressive gig experience as of late, supporting Jez Kerr, the Lovely Eggs, Hey Sholay, and even TGTF favourites The Crookes.

Actually, next week on Thursday night (3 October) alongside the Hosts, they will be supporting the Sheffield band when they play at the University of Sheffield’s student union room the Foundry. Ahead of that performance and one the following night support Go-Kart Mozard in Preston, we asked the bright-eyed and bushy-tailed trio to answer our Quickfire Questions. They are certainly our youngest participants to the QQs and so the question about what their favourite song was as a child seems a little premature, but I think you will see as you read their answers that you can be of any age to love, appreciate and get inspired by music. Read on…

What song is your earliest musical memory?
Sid: I remember my mum and dad playing The Flaming Lips‘ ‘The Yeah Yeah Yeah Song’ in the car all the time, so it would have to be that!
Henry: It was ‘Pictures of Matchstick Men’ by Status Quo, and I remember it being the song that inspired me to play guitar.
Esme: ‘Grand Canyon’ by Grandaddy.

What was your favourite song as a child?
Sid: ‘Blood on Fire’ by Niney.
Henry: ‘Fluorescent Adolescent’ by Arctic Monkeys.
Esme: Boredom by The Buzzcocks.

What song makes you laugh?
Sid: ‘I’ve Been Tired’ by Pixies.
Henry: ‘Dirty Thing’ by Telekinesis.
Esme: ‘Moving Like Mike’ by Mac Demarco.

What song makes you cry?
Sid: ‘Disco 2000’ by Pulp has pretty touching lyrics.
Henry: ‘Dance in Colour’ – The Crookes.
Esme: ‘I’d Rather Go Blind’ – Etta James.

What song reminds you of the first time you fell in love? (It’s up to you if you want this to be sweet, naughty, etc.)
Sid: I can’t think! I’ll mix it up a bit and say The Ronettes’ ‘Baby I Love You’ was the song that made me fall in love with Motown and the Phil Spector wall of sound era.
Henry: ‘Gangsters’ by The Specials and that made me fall in love with ska music.
Esme: ‘Girl You’ll be a Woman Soon’ – Urge Overkill. Pulp Fiction was the first Tarantino film I saw and the soundtracks are one of the things I fell in love with in his films.

What song makes you think of being upset / angry? (Example: maybe you heard it when you were angry with someone and it’s still with you, and/or something that calms you down when you’re upset, etc.)
Sid: I was listening to ‘U-Mass’ by Pixies when on the bus and an angry woman got on and ripped my earphones out and told me it was too loud. We had a massive argument and now every time I listen to it, it reminds me of her!
Henry: Anything in the UK top 40 or anything by Nikki Minaj.
Esme: Queen’s ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ because I don’t like the song.

Which song (any song written in the last century) do you wish you’d written yourself?
Sid: I wish I’d written any song off Tame Impala’s Lonerism. They’re all ace.
Henry: ‘Dance In Colour’ by The Crookes.
Esme: ‘Wouldn’t It Be Nice’ – The Beach Boys.

Who is your favourite writer? (This can be a songwriter or ANY kind of writer.)
Sid: Any writer from the Beat Generation, so probably Jack Kerouac or Allen Ginsberg.
Henry: Morrissey.
Esme: Frank Black from Pixies.

If you hadn’t become a singer/musician/songwriter/etc., what job do you think you’d be doing right now?
Sid: I’d be at college still!
Henry: Still be at school.
Esme: Me too.

If God said you were allowed to bring only one album with you to Heaven, which would it be and why? (Sorry, but double albums do not count.)
Sid: The Jesus and Mary Chain – ‘Darklands’. It’s just a fantastic album and everyone ought to know it.
Henry: The Cure – ‘Standing on a Beach’, because it’s a good, consistent album.
Esme: Mac Demarco – ‘2’, because it’s a happy album and I like all the songs on it.

The Oreohs’ upcoming gigs includr supporting the Crookes on Thursday (3 October) at the Foundry at University of Sheffield student union; supporting Go-Kart Mozart on Friday (4 October) at Preston Continental; and supporting Shinies on the 15th of November at Leeds Cockpit.

 

Bands to Watch #270: The Orielles (formerly The Oreoh!s)

 
By on Monday, 22nd July 2013 at 12:00 pm
 

Update: as of 26/11/2013, they’re now called The Orielles.

Every so often one comes across a band that so perfectly defies expectation – and, occasionally, reason – that they deserve to be written about just for that. The Oreoh!s are just such an act. Comprising sisters Esme and Sid Hand-Halford on bass and drums, respectively, and Henry Wade on guitar, this Halifax-based three-piece are notable for being the youngest in age I have ever seen on the professional circuit: we’re talking between 15 and 17 years of age here, folks. Not even old enough for a refreshing post-gig lager. Which in itself isn’t a special talent – after all, we were all young once – but what’s more intriguing is that they’re actually a really good band. My thoughts on their appearance at Liverpool Sound City are already out there, but after the buzz of that weekend had died down I had the opportunity to sit down and have a listen to their independently-recorded EP ‘Sunny Daze and Sleepless Nights’. [Our copy was handed to me personally by the band themselves at Brink cafe on the third day of Sound City 2013. Eat your heart out, Lammo, with your Bloc Party demo at the Franz Ferdinand gig outside the toilets at the ICA. – Ed.]

Slightly dodgy puns aside, this recording really shows the depth of ability that these three West Yorkshire youngsters display. ‘Truth Be Told’ (stream above) is the opener – after the riffing builds into a decent garage-band groove, the beautiful crystal-clear voice of Esme is introduced, at once powerful and delicate, with a fine knack for a catchy melody. The lyrics advise, “do it all before you get old”, a surprisingly mature sentiment considering the singer’s tender years. ‘Deduce’ (video at the end of this post) is the standout track, and one that rollicks along at a fine pace, with a massive serving of fizzy guitars, tinny drums, and Esme’s lovely vocal. This could genuinely be an underground garage-rock classic – slightly lo-fi, incredibly catchy chorus that comes round exactly the correct number of times, deceptively basic yet heartfelt musicianship. A real triumph. And just to show they can do downtempo as well as up, ‘Midnight In Paris’ is a delicate ballad based around squeezebox rather than guitar, and again that surprisingly mature sentiment is clear to hear.

The Oreoh!s have been a pleasure to discover. All four songs on this EP are great and show incredible potential. It’s been said before, but it’s worth repeating here – if they’re this good this young, how good will they be in a few years’ time? Let’s hope that they’ve got the staying power to properly realise their potential.

The Oreoh!s’ EP ‘Sunny Daze and Sleepless Nights’ is available from the band’s own merch store.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MlE6Yyy5eBI[/youtube]

 

Liverpool Sound City 2013: Martin’s Day 1 Roundup

 
By on Tuesday, 14th May 2013 at 1:00 pm
 

Martin’s high-res photos from the Thursday can be viewed on his Flickr.

Acts of the day: Moongaï, Findlay, The Oreoh!s (known now as the Orielles as of 26/11/13)

Venue of the day: Kazimier Gardens

It wasn’t until the final night of Liverpool Sound City 2013, whilst tramping up Seel Street for the umpteenth time that weekend, that I had a flash of the blindingly obvious: that people other than music fans are allowed to party in this area of the city as well! The past couple of nights had seen the handful of parallel streets that accommodate the countless music venues which form the heart of LSC13 dominated by so many wristband-toting musos that it was easy to forget that regular Liverpudlians on their well-deserved Saturday night shindig were permitted to use the facilities as well. What they made of the invasion of the weird, wild and wired LSC13 crowd was unclear, but none seemed uncomfortable in the others’ company. From established acts with nothing to prove, via young bucks seemingly teetering on the brink of stardom, to those dipping their toes in the waters of showcasedom for the very first time, such was the quality on offer that one could stick a pin in the LSC13 poster and have every confidence that the randomly-chosen act wouldn’t disappoint. Each person’s itinerary is by definition decided as much by practicalities, happenstance and opportunity than judicious planning, and as such is simply a snapshot of the event as a whole rather than any attempt to unravel the latest and greatest. With that caveat in mind, here’s my take on the Thursday:

Nateley's Whore's Kid Sister Liverpool Sound City 2013

Any thought of easing in gently is discarded in favour of a powerful punch in the ear courtesy of fellow Tynesiders Nateley’s Whore’s Kid Sister (@NWkidsister). Shorn of the stocking masks they were wearing last time I saw them, but lacking none of their previous raw power, Nateley’s deliver an uncompromising set perfectly summed up by their “alternative sludge” bio description. As subtle as slamming your hand in a car door. [Probably one of the weirdest names for a band since Natalie Portman’s Shaved Head too – Ed.]

Moongai Liverpool Sound City 2013

For some light relief, the first trip to the Kazimier Gardens for Moongaï‘s (@moongai) baroque mélange of idiosyncratic Gallic pop. They’re all in retro fancy dress, the music heavy with that combination of style, eccentricity and camp that the French excel at. Eva whoops beautifully over the band’s electronica-tinged upbeat pop; by the time she has scampered through the entire audience, exhorting them to ever higher levels of appreciation and excitement through a loudhailer, everyone is bemused and captivated in equal measure. Brilliant, original, bonkers.

Findlay Liverpool Sound City 2013

Findlay give great show. There’s a fine, guitar-heavy performance from the band, with particular mention to the gentleman guitarist who gamely attempts to compete with his vocalist for the audience’s indulgence. But it would be inaccurate of me to say that very much attention was paid to anyone at all but the eponymous lead singer. Attired in a skinny, clingy leopard skin dress, gyrating and emoting for all she’s worth, Findlay the band are essentially a vehicle for the lead singer’s stage presence. Her voice drips with ’70s new wave punk attitude; recent single ‘Your Sister’ showcases it perfectly: a bitter slice of pop rock, its fiercely snarled refrain demonstrating just how much potential this young act have. In Findlay we may be witnessing the emergence of a genuine rock star.

Reverend and the Makers Liverpool Sound City 2013

Reverend and the Makers are received with rapturous applause, and Jon McClure unashamedly bathes in it, acting for all the world like God’s gift to rock ‘n’ roll, rather than a paunchy Yorkshireman in his thirties. After a brief meeting earlier in the day, he seems like a delightfully down-to-earth chap, who just happens to be held in a position of adulation by a certain type of laddish crowd previously entertained by Oasis and their ilk. This reviewer is far too much of a music snob to be able to enjoy this sort of thing: the songs are all pretty basic, formulaic affairs, and the whole shebang would have little appeal if it weren’t for McClure’s irrepressible personality. Everybody bounce!

AlunaGeorge Liverpool Sound City 2013

BBC Sound of 2013 alums AlunaGeorge are the great new hope of mainstream British urban music, and their live show just about keeps that optimism on track. Aluna Francis has as good a voice live as on record, and the band are highly competent; one might hope for a little bit more soul in the performance, but no doubt that will come with time.

The Oreohs Liverpool Sound City 2013

Next up are one of the most surreal and surprising acts of the festival: The Oreoh!s hail from Halifax and trade in delightful 3-minute punk-pop ditties which sound far more mature than their age would suggest. Did I mention their age? They barely look old enough to have taken their GCSEs, let alone be knocking out some very cool songs at midnight at a music festival. I know appearances can be deceptive, but there’s no way any of them would get served for a much-needed post-gig beer without proffering ID, poor things. The natural conclusion is: if they’re this good at such a tender age, where will they be in a couple of years? Ones to keep an eye on.

The Kill Van Kulls Liverpool Sound City 2013

As if to prove the fickleness of the music biz, Manchester’s The Kill Van Kulls bring their intelligent, well-honed set of catchy, poppy, guitar epics to a mere handful of people. They were admittedly ear-splittingly loud for such a small venue, but still it sticks in the throat a bit, with memories of the Makers’ enormo-rabble fresh in the memory – the KVKs are leagues ahead in the musical department. Still, the band give it their all, with guitar histrionics aplenty. I need to see them again, in a proper venue, and a proper crowd, which is presumably what they get most other days of the week.

Bastille Liverpool Sound City 2013

Rumours abound that Bastille is full to capacity, but the opportunity to catch the man of the moment is too good to pass up, so I took a chance and headed over. Even though the room was busy, it wasn’t full – shame the same couldn’t be said for the photo pit, which was rammed with photographers trying to catch that iconic shot which could propel them out of a sweaty pit and into the catwalks of the South of France. The crowd are pretty mad for the well-crafted pop, which catches just enough of the zeitgeist to be cool, but is traditional enough to appear unthreatening to enough people to fill a sizeable venue such as tonight’s disused car park. Bastille Dan takes it all in his stride, despite his trademark gravity-defying hairstyle taking a beating. A competent performance, but I still prefer the record.

Tired of foot and exhilarated of brain, a quick peek into the delegate after party at the Epstein Theatre reveals – in amongst the scattered bodies of industry heads and liggers who’ve indulged in one too many sweet sherries throughout the evening – the final gem of the night. MiC LOWRY (pictured at top) are a five-piece self-described “boy band” who trade in the sweetest harmonies this side of the Jackson 5. Cast in the classic mould of an act like Boyz II Men, for a few brief numbers the Epstein is alive with buttery-smooth soulful sounds from these five cheeky Scouse lads. They’re so eminently ripe for the plucking by a Cowell-style ‘mentor’, you can almost s the X-Factor breathing down their necks. One can only hope they get proper, sympathetic advice that sees them grow their career in a steady, long-term fashion, rather than chewed up and spat out by the industry machine; the world needs to hear MiC LOWRY.

 
 
 

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