IPO Liverpool 2016
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Artists From Liverpool
The Amazing Kappa – Cavern regulars, Liverpool’s own Amazing Kappa combines virtuosity with original songs and specially arranged covers, with electrifying showmanship which has to be seen. Their latest CD, Rodeo Locomotiv, will (pardon the puns) grab you like a bull by the horns and bowl you over like a freight train with its sheer intensity! Paul Kappa’s voice is so strong, it could make Paul Rodgers call home and cry to his mama!
Mike Badger and the Shady Trio – A veritable Liverpool legend, Mike Badger has been penning and performing his unique brand of Scouse country tunes for a good long time, first as co-founder of The La’s, and more recently with The Onset, The Kachinas, and his solo material, along with his efforts as head of The Viper Label. With his latest band, The Shady Trio, and their soon-to-be-released album, Honky Tonk Angels on Motorbikes, he turns the rockabilly up a notch in a way that fans of Buddy Holly and Roy Orbison are sure to appreciate!
Richard Batty – He’s come a long way from gigging with various bands to writing and performing his songs as a solo-performer and busking in the streets, to having a residency at established venues such as The Cavern Club. He’s supported artists such as The Feeling, Peter Coyle (Lotus Eaters) and Bruce Foxton of The Jam, and Paul Weller’s touring band, The Songbook Collective. His songs are influenced by a wide range of music, some of his favourites being The Beatles, Big Star, Buffalo Springfield, and Television.
Rob Clarke & The Wooltones/ Brown Bears – This Liverpool lad and his bands channel some of the coolest vibes of the ‘60s and make them their own! The Wooltones’ album, The World of The Wooltones, blends Mersey beat and garage with some warm West Coast psychedelia, while The Brown Bears’ recent Country Greats and 1 Other CD retains the Byrds-ian influences, but adds a touch of good ‘ol country and honky tonk in the vein of Johnny Cash or Neil Young. Great stuff either way, so IPO audiences are in for a double treat!
Mark Frith (with guests The Mayflowers) – A multi-talented singer, songwriter, producer, artist, guitarist, and poet, and main man of Liverpool greats, The Troubadours, Frith can do everything from heartfelt ballads to perfect radio-friendly pop songs. His song, “Istanbul” was chosen last year as the opening theme for One Night in Istanbul and the 10th anniversary celebrations for Liverpool Football Club’s historic victory in the 2005 Champions League Final. He has toured across the UK and Japan, and for IPO will be joined by Japanese power poppers The Mayflowers (see below) to give his songs an extra punch!
The Gentle Scars – They feature catchy angular pop goodness laced with punk pop, space rock, shoegaze, and garage undertones in equal measure. Cool, quirky, inventive, and hard not to like! Check out their Invaders EP and their IPO showcase and hear for yourself, as they are an amazing live band as well!
The Grande – One of the Liverpool’s most mesmerizing acts, The Grande pour their collective hearts into every performance. Well steeped in Americana and Alt-Country influences, their songs blend the best of Fleetwood Mac, Ryan Adams and CSNY, complete with breathtaking harmonies, while retaining a uniquely Scouse edge. Check out their latest album, Nothing Carries On, now!
Sue Hedges – If it isn’t remarkable enough that she has met Prince Charles and has performed on bills with Steve Earle and Emmylou Harris, this Liverpool lass has been blind almost since birth! But there are many sides to the prolific Miss Hedges – she’s been known to display her rock diva persona, throw in a jangle-pop song, a bit of country twang, a heartfelt ballad, and then belt out some soul all in the space of a single set! She also perfectly channels Donna Summer at the height of the disco-era, as she does on her latest CD, Outta Party!
Hijinx – Hijinx are back at the IPO again with their fizzy mix of power pop and big chords. With guitarist Barry McKeown now firmly ensconced in the band, and Carl Phythian adding some sweet lead guitar licks, they serve up killer hooks and three part harmonies worthy of their influences – Kiss, Cheap Trick, Nick Gilder and The Sweet!
The Jackobins – Take powerful melodic alt rock, mix liberally with pop hooks that will forever embed themselves in your brain, and a dash of funk for good measure, and you’ve got The Jackobins – one of the hottest local acts currently making a name for themselves in both Liverpool and beyond! Their “One More Chance” single has recently received national airplay on BBC6, and they’re working on the details of a European tour planned for later this year. If you like U2 or Stone Roses, you owe it to yourself to check these guys out!
Dave Lloyd (of The Suns) – Dave Lloyd is the lead singer, guitarist and songwriter with Liverpool band The Suns, who have released five albums and two EP’s to critical acclaim around the world. The Suns current album Cluster (A Collection) is available via iTunes and all digital retailers worldwide. Dave typically has something special up his sleeves for his IPO Liverpool performances, and has become one of the regular “must-see” acts both for fans of The Suns and festival-goers alike!
Lloyd and Daly – Dave Lloyd of The Suns (see above) has teamed up with talented singer/guitarist Lauren Daly to play some stripped-down easy listening ‘70s classics, with a few gems from The Suns thrown in for good measure. Lloyd & Daly’s IPO Liverpool show will definitely be one that fans of The Suns and IPO regulars will not want to miss!
Jack McAllister – Picking up right where he left off with Watchtower, who wowed us with their incendiary juggernaut of psychedelic power at their final show ever at last year’s IPO Liverpool, their lead singer/guitarist is back to kick off his solo career at IPO after a year away from music! His solo music retains a healthy dose of psychedelia, liberally mixed with power pop, glam, and folk pop, and really allows his gift for melody to shine through. A debut single is due out later this year, so watch for it!
Mark Pountney – Having previously led various musical projects, such as The Mojave Collection and Mark Delaney & Friends, Pountney is now performing under his own name, shedding the restrictions of a “band” format and working with no fixed musical style and with an extended family of musicians to have fun and make music. His songs – which you can hear at his IPO showcase and on his recent CDs, Mark I and Mark II – are influenced by everything from The Beatles to The Move to Cat Stevens to Howlin’ Wolf, and a whole lot in between!
Jay Rehm – He is perhaps best known as the main man of Jimmy & The Revolvers, who have sadly decided to call it quits, but whose tight harmonies, catchy melodies, and infectious beats can still be heard on their Sunday Morning EP. His solo music continues his love affair with the genius of ‘50s and ‘60s artists such as Johnny Cash, The Beatles, and The Everly Brothers, but gives it a more intimate feel. Cool!
SheBeat – A Liverpool singer/songwriter mixing ‘60s influences with those of modern day troubadours such as PJ Harvey and Norah Jones. Expect tales of romantic misadventure and perfect portions of hum-a-long acoustic folk pop. The debut self-titled SheBeat EP is available via iTunes, and look for a new EP in June!
Stacked Actors- – They took their name from a great Foo Fighters track, and accordingly these Liverpool lads are influenced by The Foos, as well as such diverse bands as Red Hot Chili Peppers, Queens of the Stone Age, Muse, Radiohead, The Beatles, Blondie and The Cure, to name but a few! They played IPO Liverpool last year for the first time since 2006, and like fine wine they have developed an intoxicating complexity with age, and we’re thrilled to have them back again! Check out their most recent and most excellent A Call To Action album!
Joe Symes & The Loving Kind – Symes specializes in captivating songs dealing with different everyday issues such as politics; life relationships; friends; heartache; and what’s going on in the world today. A tireless performer and promoter, he and the band are constantly gigging all over Liverpool and beyond and spreading their message on the internet. Their cool brand of edgy power pop and Symes’ powerful vocals are sure to please fans of every age and genre, as evidenced by the worldwide airplay and positive press for their debut self-titled album. Their recent single, “Things Get Better,” has a heavier sound, while losing none of their melodic sensibilities, and has already gotten major airplay – including at Anfield on Liverpool Football Club match days! A second full-length album is in the works, and we can hardly wait to hear it!
Steve Thompson & The Incidents – Having gigged up and down the UK and Europe and shared the stage with the likes of Mungo Jerry, Suzi Quatro, and The Stranglers (along with many others!), and doing stints in various bands and as a solo artist, Thompson has found his niche with The Incidents. Their recent Rainbows & Arrows album features insanely hooky upbeat pop that rocks like mid to late ‘70s radio used to…and like radio still should today!
Three Minute Hero – Deriving the name from a song by 2-Tone ska band The Selecter, Three Minute Hero is a semi acoustic artist active on the live music scene. The brainchild of Liverpool songwriter, musician and award-winning promoter Stuart Todd, Three Minute Hero mixes raw social commentary with an eclectic mix of melodic material, and elevating the classic three minute pop song by giving it a subversive lyrical twist. Their debut single, “A Piece of The Action”, is a politically charged anti-capitalist anthem…wrapped in a groovy keyboard-laced psychedelic pop song! A debut full-length album is due out later this year, so watch for it!
UK Artists From Outside Of Liverpool
The 286 – A seven-piece band from London, which also features members of The Fore (who have played many an IPO Liverpool), The 286 dare to cross the genres of indie rock and classical music. By clashing rock n’ roll riffs with cellos and violins, The 286 create a unique sound that you expect to be reminiscent of a musical collaboration between The Beatles and Ludwig van Beethoven! Check out their recent self-titled CD, and you’ll hear what we mean!
Adorned – Drawing influences from bands such as The Beatles, Stone Roses, Joy Division, Oasis and The Smiths as well as many others for their recent Lazy Summer Daze EP, Adorned deliver songs which are designed to get in your head and live there. These boys from Bradford bring back the days of heady hooks, sun-drenched verses sprinkled with melodic choruses and ear pleasing guitar solos, taking you on a rock ‘n roll dream from which you won’t ever want to wake up!
Affairs – Manchester-based Affairs are a sharply-dressed quintet, who have earned a reputation for their ethereal and theatrical live performances, considered lyrics and synth-based electro-pop rock. Their music contains elements that are both uniquely modern and nostalgic, as laptop-made samples and loops combine seamlessly with vintage Rickenbacker guitars and expressive, baritone vocals. Fans of Spandau Ballet or The Smiths should check them out!
The Afternoons – An appropriately named band from Cardiff whose soft sounds influenced by Brian Wilson, David Bowie, Roxy Music, and Teenage Fanclub are just perfect for a sunny afternoon. Their now classic 2008 CD, Sweet Action, is emblematic of the Afternoons’ quest for perfect pop; its title cemented by the discovery that it is also the name of a glossy German pornographic magazine for women. It’s been a few years since they last played IPO Liverpool, and we’re thrilled to have them back!
B-Leaguers – The latest project led by Lincoln-based James “Popdog” to grace the stage of IPO Liverpool, B-Leaguers have been hailed as “…the new Power Pop / Pop Punk sensation that will surely blow the socks off and enthuse the minds of those that come to hear them” (Ian D. Hall, Liverpool Sound and Vision). Their debut album, Death Of A Western Heart, has been gathering some much deserved media attention, but you won’t want to miss the energy of their live performance!
The Bad Losers – This Bristol-based quartet were brought together by a shared love of ‘60s garage and Freakbeat, and that love is clearly evident in their songs! Although their recent album, Easy, was recorded in a garden shed as opposed to an actual garage, it perfectly captures the appropriate lo-fi ambience to complement their sound. Fans of The Monkees, The Creation, and The Move will want to be sure to catch both of their IPO sets!
The Beat Movement – A guitar driven outfit from Greenock, Scotland, who build on the influences of many, many bands, ranging from the great London acts of the ‘60s and infusing those influences with soul, R&B and the greatest Britpop and indie bands of the modern music era. With jangling ‘60s style guitars, contagious melodies and an upbeat swagger, The Beat Movement are making waves with their latest EP, Another Piece Of The Puzzle, and their foot stomping sets! For those of you watching in black and white this one is in techni-colour!!!!
The Blue Lenas – Taking influences from artists such as George Clinton/Parliament, Funkadelic, Miles Davis, The Rolling Stones and more, although not necessarily sounding like them, The Blue Lenas share the same spirit of continually innovating and pushing their musical directions with a sense of freedom , looseness and no limits to style or genre. Their debut self-titled EP will therefore appeal to a wide range of audiences – including fans of the aforementioned artists, as well as lovers of jazz, blues, early Stax recordings, and reggae! Another awesome band from Glasgow!
Brave New World – Three songwriters ? A left handed bass player? This four, soon to be five- piece , Cheshire-based outfit blend psych, new wave, and folk-rock to create their own distinctive sound.
The Breakdowns – In describing their music, Nottingham’s The Breakdowns ask us to imagine a time when pop music dictated the heartbeat of the world, when the pop charts actually meant something. Their mission: creating perfect rock ‘n roll for the disillusioned masses. Their brand new EP, Charity Case, exemplifies everything that is great about power pop, punk pop and glam! Fans of Chuck Berry, The Ramones, and Buddy Holly in particular will be instantly hooked!
Mark Britton – Purveyor of quirky orchestrated piano/folk pop extraordinaire, Britton’s music will appeal to fans of artists such as ELO, Teenage Fanclub, and Jellyfish. Lofty company to be sure, and if this sounds too good to be true, just check out Ryan’s Gig Guide, which has been a mainstay of the West Midlands music scene for years – they (very deservedly!) recognized his recent Odds & Sodd album as their “album of the month” for December 2015!
Tom Butler – A busker from the London underground (by way of Seattle) and damn fine folk-singer and pop-meister, Butler’s songs sparkle with the nostalgia of ‘60s-styled storyteller folk-pop and the crunchy alt-country of bands such as Crowded House or Traveling Wilburys, complete with a dose of jangly harmonies evocative of The Byrds or The Eagles, and topped off with catchy power pop hooks! Check out his IPO showcase and his debut On The Line EP!
Captain Wilberforce – Beautiful melodies, dripping with layers of harmony and rich instrumentation, replete with subtle hooks and inventive chord changes abound on Ghost Written Confessions, the latest CD by this band from Leeds. Fans of Brendan Benson, Guided By Voices, Squeeze, and Jellyfish – to name but a few! – should definitely check this out!
Cardinal Jack – Angular indie-rock with a power pop sensibility can be found in the music of this trio from London, which will appeal to fans of The Clash, David Bowie, and Hot Hot Heat. Their debut album, We Shall Start The Dance, will also appeal to fans of quirky punk/new wave acts such as Devo and Talking Heads. They keep getting better with every IPO, and we can’t wait to see them again!
Deep Six – Comprised of ex-members of Makin Time, The Upper Fifth, The Threads and The E Types, this Medway area quartet have played in various bands and permutations over the years, and songwriters Mark (Syd) McGounden and Marty Street have been writing both together and separately since the early ‘80s! Their music is influenced by the likes of Bowie, The Move, The Small Faces, and The Pretty Things, and was the subject of a recent four-page feature in Heavy Soul Modzine! They are also working on a debut EP, which we can hardly wait to hear!
The Dream Factory – Some may remember this Tamworth-based combo (which includes Mark Mortimer of DC Fontana and Don Fardon’s band-see below) from their heyday in the mid-‘80s, but alas, their trajectory to international stardom was blown off-course by the rise of the Manchester scene. Despite their “almost-made-it” status, they were the archetypal proto-indie group of that time, releasing two records on staunchly independent northern soul label, Inferno, and building up a huge and loyal fan base of scooterists and mods. The band’s first ever demo recording – “The Haze” appears on Another Splash of Colour, a brand new Cherry Red compilation of ‘80s psychedelic music, alongside other songs from artists as diverse as The Cure, Julian Cope, The Prisoners, Robyn Hitchcock, the Monochrome Set, and The Barracudas, to name but a few!
The Electric Stars – A band unlike any other on ‘The Scene’ right now! They have managed to perfect a trick, that all the great bands have up their collective sleeve. That is, the ability to soak up all the best music, from the best bands, from any era & spit it out as original tunes! They confidently swagger like The Stones & hold an audience like Kasabian. The songs can be as whimsical as The Kinks or violent like The Sex Pistols. The Electric Stars are a Psychedelic Rock ‘n Roll Speedball bursting with Glamtastic guitars, Hippy lyrics & drenched in Soul. The band formed in 2011 as a gang of like-minded freaks, from the remnants of various Mancunian combo’s. The Mission: Original Rock n’ Roll that inspires!
Escapade – The insanely catchy Britpop sounds on their debut EP, , can be heavy and driving, or jangly and uplifting as the mood requires. Fans of Oasis, Stone Roses, George Harrison, or Crowded House should be sure to catch their IPO showcase! One of Leicester’s finest and a young band to watch out for!
Don Fardon – IPO is honored to welcome Fardon back to IPO Liverpool, this time playing under his own name! He was (and is) the lead singer of The Sorrows (with whom he played IPO Liverpool in 2014), one of the founding bands of the UK Freakbeat movement, who are surely remembered for their hit and album, “Take A Heart,” and Fardon’s rendition of “Indian Reservation” was a hit before the one by The Raiders. Fardon can still belt ‘em out like nobody’s business, so this promises to be something truly special!
The Fast Camels – Glasgow is a veritable fountain of psychedelic garage music, and these guys are quintessential purveyors of that sound. Their trippy, ‘60s-inspired sounds bring to mind such bands as early Pink Floyd, Love and The Byrds. They’ve been scarfing up airplay and fans in the UK, US, and Europe since the release of their 2007 debut album, The Magic Optician. Their second album, Dead Rooms and Butterfly Dreams, adds a touch of early ‘70s-inflected experimental prog-rock to the mix – nice!
Fun Of The Pier – Fun of the Pier is Helen on vocals and guitar and Mark on acoustic bass. Their songs have a lighthearted folky feel, but with darker undercurrents. Imagine a very British Judy Collins fronting Nirvana, and you’d come close to what this enigmatic act from Nottingham sounds like.
Luke Gallagher – If you thought mod and folk-pop were two different sub-genres, then think again! Gallagher effortlessly blends the two so seamlessly, you’d think this is just how it’s always been done! Come check out this Wrexham-based gent at his IPO showcase, and see and hear what we mean!
Garfield’s Birthday – From the unlikely hamlet of Weymouth come these lads who continue to proudly wave the indie-pop banner after 20 years, with no signs of slowing down, which we truly appreciate! They’ve put out numerous demos and albums over the years and just keep getting better and better, taking inspiration from artists such as Teenage Fanclub, Big Star, and XTC, and adding their own special twist. Check out their most recent CD, You Are Here, and watch for another due out soon!
Micah Gilbert – Based in Uig, Highland, by way of Athens, Georgia, Gilbert’s songs have been appreciated on many levels for their distinct and memorable melodies, skillful, well crafted, intelligent lyrics, vivid images, catchy subtlety, and fine details. Fans of Todd Rundgren, James Taylor, and George Harrison should check him out!
Alison Green – A fine acoustic singer/songwriter based in Canterbury with a distinctive voice and quirky folk pop hooks. Fans of Norah Jones, Edie Brickell, and Joni Mitchell should check her out!
Honeybug – Since their first appearance at IPO in 2006, Honeybug has been one of the highlights of the festival, and their main man Ni has been a ubiquitous and welcome fixture on the scene. Ni’s brought 13 other musicians to IPO over that time – most of them several times – and has also played drums (Mini) and sung backing vocals (Fun of the Pier – see above) with other bands at IPO. Masters of self-reinvention, Honeybug has been everything from a three-piece acoustic lineup to a big seven-piece production with seven vocals, and we can’t wait to see what Ni has up his sleeves for this year’s performance! There’s no CD this year as Ni’s been very busy teaching songwriting and other music-related subjects to the next generation at Edinburgh College where he’s lectured for the last 17 years, so if you want to hear his latest creations – as well as old favorites – you’ll have to catch Honeybug at their IPO showcase!
The Housekeeping Society – Continuing to indulge both their love of storytelling evident in their prior albums, and their ability to take inspiration from just about any theme and turn it into a beautiful collection of experimental pop songs, The Housekeeping Society’s latest EP, Round Window, was created during a five-day residency at Chapel FM in Seacroft, East Leeds. All of the music on the EP is inspired by the building and its surroundings, and some of the tracks even feature the Chapel FM Ensemble! Brian Wilson fans in particular will dig these gents. One of West Yorkshire’s finest bands!
Scott Howells (from The Broken Vinyl Club) – As one of the main men of The Broken Vinyl Club, Howells melded lots of cool ‘60s pop and mod influences into a fantastic cohesive whole to make the band one of Cardiff’s hottest acts. Now doing the solo thing, he’s picked up right where the band left off, releasing his second single, “World’s On Fire,” earlier this year, and we can’t wait to see and hear what he’ll do next!
Jekyll – Influenced by the likes of Muse, Radiohead, The Smiths, Nirvana, REM, Joy Division, Kasabian and Maximo Park, their music is an addictive blend of melancholic melody. Their four-track EP, Wounds, was released late last year, and they have become known for their energetic and perfectionist approach to every performance, making this Blackpool-based foursome one you will not want to miss!
Junebug – Landing squarely between punk-pop and jangle-pop, as well as between Wirral and Abergele, Wales, Junebug have been building a huge following with regular radio play on BBC stations in both of their hometowns. Beloved in power pop circles for their lighthearted music influenced by The Ramones, XTC, The Hollies, and The Beatles, which has featured prominently on all of their previous albums, their latest, Alternative Rock Compilation Album, features a more distorted guitar sound, subversive lyrics and a nonchalant, defiant attitude influenced by bands such as Nirvana, Black Sabbath, The Stranglers, Foo Fighters, Joy Division, Manic Street Preachers, New Order & REM. Very cool!
The Jungfraus – A Manchester five-piece led by charismatic songwriting team Mick Kenyon and Joe Levi, who also share brilliantly contrasting lead vocals. That, alongside their telepathic rhythm section of Ste Grimes (bass) and Liam Farr (drums) and coupled with the swirling paisley tinged Hammond of Jonny Rathbone, makes for a sound both vintage and unique. Their debut self-titled album blends blinding surf pop, snarling garage guitars and eastern tinged psychedelia reminiscent of such bands as Love, The Brian Jonestown Massacre, and Syd Barrett-era Pink Floyd. A must have for any true psych pop fan!
The Junipers – The gentle psychedelic pop sound of The Junipers have earned them both rave reviews and many fans from far and wide beyond their home of Leicester. Their songs are mellow and yet joyful and uplifting, balancing influences from The Hollies to The Move to The Millennium to the Beach Boys in equal measure. Their most recent CD, Paint The Ground, adds a pastoral touch, and has been cited in Mojo Magazine as “heavenly,” but wait…there’s more: They will have early CD copies of their eagerly awaited 3rd album, Red Bouquet, which is not officially released till June, available exclusively for sale at their IPO showcase! Yay!
King Mojo – An energetic four-piece outfit from Middlesbrough, King Mojo are rapidly becoming one of the areas top live acts. Their thundering tight, well-crafted songs blend elements of ‘60s psychedelia and ‘70s funk and punk with mod, Britpop, and power pop, and are instantly addictive!
Last Breath – A band from Blackpool including brothers James and Tom Parkinson, who specialize in intense modern rock influenced by Nickelback, 3 Doors Down, Black Stone Cherry, All Time Low, Paramore, Volbeat, Blink 182, Green Day, et al…but more melodic than any of them. We really look forward to seeing them back again at IPO Liverpool, this time armed with their recently released album, Heads Or Tails!
The Len Price 3 – Hailing from the Medway Delta, their sound is forged in the Medway tradition, fusing driving energy, catchy hooks and a raw ‘60s garage edge. They’ve got four excellent CDs (if you don’t have the most recently released Nobody Knows, you need to get it – now!), and a live show that will blow you away and re-define what it is to be a power trio…as a testament to this fact, at one of their IPO Liverpool performances, the manager of another band was heard to say: “These are TOO GOOD…I’m going to go home and cry!”
Col Lewis – A gent from Burton-on-Trent with a fine-tuned ear for melody, Lewis has played with a number of bands, including Postcards From Places That Don’t Exist (who played IPO Liverpool from 2010 to 2012). He’s currently working on his solo material with producer Fran Ashcroft, who has produced The Quarrymen, The La’s and many more artists in and out of Abbey Road Studios. If you like simple catchy sing along choruses with an early timeless sound, you will want to make a point of catching his IPO showcase…and keep your eyes open for an EP, which should be available soon!
Loopy – Formed in Oxford in January of 1995 from the remnants of local bands Vicar’s New Mistress, Mr Wilson’s Wig and Major Groove, and recently joined by ex-Chesterfields drummer Dom Fox, Loopy have finely tuned their “redolent of the ‘80s” pop into a more mainstream happy-jangly power pop. Think catchy choruses with jangly guitars and heart-lifting harmonies that fans of Elvis Costello and Squeeze in particular will appreciate. Their latest album, Living The Adventure: The Best Of Loopy, is a retrospective of their music over the past 20 years, and is a “must have” for both long-time fans of the band and power pop, indie pop, and Brit pop lovers everywhere!
Loor A Los Heroes – Cast yourself back to ‘86, add some Motown drums, postcard androgyny, vocal harmonies galore and great shoes, and you’ve got the insanely catchy Loor A Los Heroes, who despite the Spanish name and Spanish label (Pretty Olivia, which is also home to the latest release by The Wellgreen – see below), are actually from Wigan! Check out their latest single, “Heartbreak Girl”, and their IPO showcase, and you’ll be instantly hooked!
The Lost 45s – IPO is thrilled to welcome back this band from Leeds, who last played the festival in 2007! Influenced by ‘60s beat, psyche & pop, classic soul, blues & R n’ B and all their bastard offspring, they were the quintessential champions of the Leeds mod/psyche scene before going on hiatus to pursue other projects. Their classic album, What Time Do You Call This?, is available for download from Detour Records, and their recently unearthed “lost” track, “Outta Sight,” has been made available as a Rowed Out Records 7” vinyl! We can’t wait to see them do their thing live again!
Magic Bus – A prog/pop/folk rock combo from Devon whose music is best described as “a love-in of late ‘60s early ‘70s Canterbury scene with harmony soaked west coast hippy!” Their latest album, Transmission From Sogmore’s Garden, features intricately woven melodies, intense keyboards and guitars, and lighthearted pop flute! This is one bus you will want to hop on board!
Midland Railway – A delightfully quirky and enigmatic pop band from Manchester who describe their music as what it might sound like if really camp aliens, in miniskirts and feather boas, alien-napped Weezer and Rilo Kiley and Blur and put them all together and shook them up with a dash of alien music and some prettier people. Intrigued? Then come check out their IPO showcase, which they promise will be their biggest gig ever, as they wind up the last night of the festival on the Cavern Back Stage!
Miracle Glass Company – From supernaturally beautiful songs to seismic mind bending jams, these Edinburgh-based lads represent all that’s best about cosmic rock n’ roll, but it’s their tight vocal harmonies and ingenious song structures that make them an electric outfit worth putting everything else on hold for.
The Mourning After – A Sheffield quartet who mix ‘60s psychedelic and garage rock with a touch of ‘70s punk to create an irresistible sound that fans of The Kingsmen, The Yardbirds, The Electric Prunes, and The Troggs are sure to enjoy! Check out any of their vinyl and cassette releases and their IPO showcase to see and hear what we mean! Quintessential garage punk, raw and raucous (just the way it should be)!
MR Bridger – If you like songs with melody, aggression, angst & humour, with hook lines a-plenty (and who doesn’t?), then look no further! MR Bridger is classic British power pop in the tradition of bands such as The Who, The Buzzcocks, and The Jam. Their latest album, Out For Tea, mixes punk, mod, garage, and Motown influences with reckless abandon, and their live shows have been called incendiary! Another excellent power trio from The Medway Delta!
The Mushroom Club – A psychedelic rock n’ roll outfit from the south of Scotland for whom their craft is an entity, a feeling, a way of being. Their EPs (simply entitled EP1 and EP2) provide a heady wash of jangle, feedback and distortion that fans of The 13th Floor Elevators and Brian Jonestown Massacre will love!
mylittlebrother – “There is something happening in the Lake District that is really rather special” (Louder Than War), and these Cumbrian indie-poppers are a big part of that. Their music is a mixture of ‘60s harmony pop, experimental Britpop, and folk pop that will appeal to fans of Fairport Convention and Brian Wilson – in fact, their latest EP, We’re All Gonna Die!, was produced by longtime Brian Wilson band member, Scott Bennett! Check it out now!
Olly Neasham – An engaging singer/songwriter from Bolton who has captivated pop fans from Liverpool to Chicago and up and down the American West coast in his previous IPO appearances, first as the leader of A Foreign Town, and more recently as a solo artist and member of The Grande (see above). His work has always had a pleasing indie-pop-folk style reminiscent of Neil Finn or Crowded House, but his solo music adds a more personal touch: part Bob Dylan, part Bing Crosby…and totally enjoyable!
The Newds – An alt-pop sextet from Bolton whose passion for what they do is evident in their songs. “It’s as if The Newds have stumbled across a musical jumble sale and they’ve picked up the threads of melody dropped off by the obvious greats like Harry Nilsson, Simon & Garfunkel, Lennon and Heather Mills’ ex-husband…” (Austin Collings) If this sounds too good to be true, you owe it to yourself to pick up a copy of their Ready EP and come check out their IPO showcase…which may be your only chance to see them this year, as then they’re back in the studio cooking up some more melodic goodness!
The Paper Trains – Formed in 2011, Southampton’s The Paper Trains are a modern three-piece string band with a distinct repertoire of elegant and distinctive arrangements of little-known back-porch ditties and high-energy gritty foot stompers. Their debut album, The Mule, is a record of evocative and vocal-fuelled originals, drawing influences from Americana, blues, roots, country and folk traditions. Yee-Haw!
Kyle Parry – Armed with an acoustic guitar and a powerful voice, Parry is one to watch on the singer/songwriter circuit. He’s been playing around his home of Northern Wales for years, but has started reaching out to a wider audience. With an eclectic array of influences from Stereophonics to John Mayer, Band of Skulls, The Beatles, and Stevie Wonder, et al, his music is sure to appeal to pop fans of all shapes and sizes! His recent LP, Take You Away, is available via many fine internet retailers!
Luke Potter – An up and coming phenom from Weston Super Mare, influenced by the likes of Jimmy Eat World, Jason Mraz, Fountains of Wayne, Goo Goo Dolls and the music of his father who played in bands way back when, Potter decided at age 17 that he wanted to be a singer/songwriter, and has not looked back! In his short career, he has had the opportunity to work with some of the finest producers in the industry including Steve Power (Robbie Williams, McFly, Andrea Bocelli), Eric Rosse (Sara Bareilles, Tori Amos), Ken Caillat (Fleetwood Mac, Colbie Caillat), and Bleu, and has had his debut single “We’re Alive” picked up by Hard Rock Cafés worldwide! His debut CD, So Sugar, is chock full of super sticky power pop meets bubblegum hooks and uplifting ballads that were made to be heard on the radio!
The Ragamuffins – They’re a six-piece indie/pop group now based Manchester (but who made their reputation in Liverpool), renowned for their emphasis on harmonies, clear arrangements and catchy melodies. “[E]xactly what British indie pop needs right now; charm, originality, but most of all, damn fine song writing” (Preston University Press). Their jangly, frenetic pop style and groove takes in elements of Northern Soul, Ska, Rock n’ Roll, ‘80s Electro Pop and ‘60s British Invasion, all wrapped up in a dark, witty but uplifting lyricism, owing much to profound pop and indie greats such as Elvis Costello, Morrissey, Lloyd Cole, Ian McCulloch, and Stuart Murdoch. Check out their latest disc, Over The Shipping Forecast, and you’ll hear what we mean! One of our favorite bands each year at IPO Liverpool!
Marco Rea – Fans of The Wellgreen (see below) take note: in addition to being one of their main men, Rea has also branched out with a fine crop of songs under his own name. The sunny melodies and ‘60s influences are there to be sure, but mixed with a refreshing touch of whimsy! Fans of Burt Bacharach, Randy Newman, Brian Wilson, and (of course) The Wellgreens will love this! One of Glasgow’s most prolific and gifted singer songwriters!
The Rising – A Southampton six-piece who have many influences which they unashamedly wear on their collective sleeves, ranging from the Hammond driven sound of the ‘60s, the chaotic late ‘70s punk scene and the ‘90s Britpop era. Their debut self-titled CD earned so many rave reviews from various blogs that it attracted the attention of Detour Records, who have made a re-release available with bonus tracks, and are working with the band on a follow up set to be released later this year – watch for it!
Rogue Frequency – Stockport based IPO veterans, Rogue Frequency are a three piece with classic, prog and alternate rock influences that generally write music that appeals to the darker side of the human psyche. They have, to date, written and self-produced three albums and their forth, a concept album, is near completion. Original, big sounding classic rock influenced anthemia songs that sound greater than the sum of its parts.
Joel Sarakula – From a musical education in Australia, through baby steps at the piano, to wearing out his parents’ record collection, Sarakula has long been captivated by the primordial soup of ‘60s /’70s pop music. Now based in London, Sarakula appears solo and with some of the UK and Europe’s most soulful sidemen, as he will at IPO with The Jooles (see below). His latest CD, The Imposter, will appeal to fans of The Beach Boys, Todd Rundgren, Brendon Benson, and Sly Stone!
David Sayle – Some may recognize this one-time Liverpool resident (now based in St Helens) as the main man of Private Universe, but over the years has established himself as solo performer as well. His acoustic rock style aims to show great songs at the bare minimalist level, which allows him to better convey his musical ability as a guitarist. It also showcases his vocal style and range and the lyrical detail behind the songs.
Seeguls – An indie alternative band from Chester with harmonized euphoric guitar riffs and punk energy, Seeguls take their cues from bands such as The Strokes, The Libertines, and The Smiths. Fusing catchy guitar lines, passionately sung lyrics and an unrivalled energy, Seegulls offer something fresh to the decaying genre of indie-rock. Their guitarist is Matty Carney, son of Ian Carney of Liverpool’s own Hijinx (see above)!
The Shudders – With energy, driving rhythm and heartfelt melodies, The Shudders combine their melee of musical influences to produce a refreshing brand of indie-country-rock on their latest CD, No Angels in the Slipstream. Vocal harmonies, screaming guitar, warm acoustic and a commanding rhythm section weave a rich tapestry of noise cut from a cloth made up of Crazy Horse, Bright Eyes, and Wilco! One of Swindon’s finest!
Silver Coast – “Showing real promise so far in their brief career, Inverness band Silver Coast play emotive, atmospheric rock, with chiming guitars and soaring vocals that could one day fill stadia.” (Vic Galloway, BBC Radio) Their recent Seasons EP will appeal to fans of Feeder, Twin Atlantic, and Paramore!
Sly Antics – Two cousins from Manchester and a taller lad called Tommo who make noise that leaves you feeling like you’ve been hit hard and repeatedly in the face with a box of stale cereal. They cite their influences as anyone who puts blood and sweat into their music – artists such as Arctic Monkeys, Placebo, Muse, and Red Hot Chili Peppers. In their short career, they have already snagged gigs alongside Maximo Park and This Feeling, and are poised to take the world by storm! Check out the five ear-blistering tracks on their recent Captive City EP!
Spygenius – Inspired by bands like The Beach Boys, The Beatles and Robyn Hitchcock, Spygenius offer ultra-melodic music with a light ‘60s influence. The London-based four-piece play original guitar-based pop for people with an appreciation for harmonies and clever wordplay….and who among us can’t appreciate that!? Fans will also appreciate their latest CD, Comforting Suture, and they may very well have a new one for us at IPO Liverpool!
The Strawberries – A band from Leeds who play rock n’ roll the way it was meant to be – an addictive blend of hooks, harmony, and swagger. Fans of psych pop, power pop and classic rock will love them!
Sunshine Bloom – A progressive power pop quartet from Birmingham in the fine tradition of artists such as Jellyfish, Big Star, and Wings! Their debut EP, Rose, will also appeal to fans of Brian Wilson and ELO! We very much look forward to seeing them at IPO!
The Swagger – These boys from North London have been playing shows up and down the UK, causing quite a stir and creating quite a buzz. Their songs are very catchy and gritty, with a melodic punk-rock alternative sound. Fans of classic British punk rock as well as mod will want to keep an eye out for their debut EP, which should be released just after their IPO Liverpool appearance. They are also heading back to the studio later this year, and should emerge with a full-length to be released in 2017!
The Theme – A South London fusion of Britpop and post-punk Mod rock, The Theme are not trying to re-invent the wheel, but are focused on playing quality rock n’ roll. This is not ‘60s flower-power, it’s hard-hitting rock music in the best traditions of bands such as Ocean Colour Scene or The Who. Their Hit The Sky EP won “Best EP for 2014” from Galaxy Entertainment, and their latest, In A Daze, has been getting rave reviews since its release late last year. They’ve become one of the most powerful and exciting live bands around, so don’t miss their IPO showcase!
Toxic Melons – Sprung from the mind of Newcaste-Upon-Tyne-based singer/songwriter/producer/arranger, Pablo Melons, the “band” is comprised of a revolving cast of musicians from all over the world whom he brings in to play on his songs. Said songs are heavily influenced by ‘60s/’70s pop with some ‘90s West Coast flavour! Fans of Jellyfish, ELO, and Elton John will surely appreciate latest Toxic Melons EP, Four Play!
The Transmitters – Though their choice of classic instruments would not look out of place in a ‘60s mod club, this is definitely a 21st century outfit. Taking influences from ‘60s and ‘70s power pop and R&B, real ale, single malt whisky and the English way of life, the Bolton-based quartet create a melting pot of original music that combines energetic beats and thunderous bass lines with colliding guitar riffs and snarling vocals. Check out their debut EP, Catch The Sun, and their recently released single, Here Comes The Weekend, which could easily become a Friday afternoon anthem!
Twister – An energetic pop/punk/rock band out of Durham, who are quickly exploding beyond the confines of their local area. They write strong, hook-laden melodic rock, shifting seamlessly from anthems to more garage/blues influenced numbers. Fans of Motion City Soundtrack and Oasis should check out their recently released album, This Isn’t Wonderland, and their IPO showcase!
Tytania – Described by many as a cross between One Republic and Lawson, Tytania have amassed a loyal and dedicated following by taking their undeniably infectious and upbeat live show to every major town and city throughout the UK. Their debut album, Higher, showcases not only their upbeat anthemic rock style, but also the Leeds-based band’s awesome harmonies!
Ulysses – Praised in major publications like The Guardian, Shindig! and Classic Rock Magazine, Bath’s rock upstarts deliver quirky pop delights and to die for big riffs with what is fast becoming Ulysses’ own distinct sound – a nether land between psych, glam and rock, guitar stroking and pop sheen. Their brand new album, Law And Order, bursts in equal parts with great harmonies and glam rock swagger that fans of T Rex, The Rolling Stones, and Thin Lizzy will love! Their explosive live show will make you think Isle of Wight!
Velettes -An intense mixture of reverb, smooth vocals, and a driving beat makes the music of these Londoners hard to resist! Their brand new EP, Colour Studies, will be released just days before their IPO Liverpool appearance, and is sure to appeal to fans of Echo and the Bunnymen and The Cure!
The Viewers -A Cornish rock four-piece who found the world lacking in the kind of music they wanted to listen to themselves, so they did something about it, and we are certainly glad that they did! They play ‘60s-influenced original music, inspired by iconic names such as The Beatles, The Byrds, The Kinks and The Hollies. Their recent Let Light In album is a must have for jangle-a-holics everywhere!
Waste -Formed from the wasted youth of a small island in North Wales ,Waste blend heavy rock with strong melodic vocals and thought provoking lyrics, to produce happy yet acerbic brand of pop/rock . Main man Marcus Peachey previously played IPO Liverpool with two awesome bands, Valleum and Seagull Kinevil!
The Wellgreen -The Wellgreen combine classic ‘60s songwriting, early power pop and psychedelia on top of vintage recording techniques to create a familiar yet fresh and original sound. Written, recorded and produced by Marco Rea (see above) & Stuart Kidd in their spiritual home of The Barne on the outskirts of Glasgow, their latest album, Summer Rain, was released on Spanish label Pretty Olivia Records, and features both new and a few old Wellgreen songs. Fans of Neil Young, CCR, and George Harrison will dig ‘em!
Thee Wylde Fuzz Show -The latest project featuring “Thee Wylde Jonny,” who many IPO fans will remember as the main man of Leeds’ The Ace. Thee Wylde Fuzz show is…well, “Wylder” and “Fuzzier” while retaining Jonny’s penchant for penning mod garage rockers, and cranking the harmonies and hooks up a notch or three. Their debut single “Stunner/Thinking” will appeal to fans of all things Freakbeat!
Las Annettes -A trio of lovely ladies from Barcelona, inspired by ‘60s girl groups, bubblegum and sunshine pop. The songs on their La Luz Del Sol EP and their new single, I’m Not Your Girlfriend, will appeal to fans of the Supremes, Belle & Sebastian, The Left Banke, and their Elefant Records labelmates, The School, et al! Check it out now!
Armchair Oracles -Classic-style power pop with great melodies, quirky tempo and chord changes, and spot-on harmonies are what this band from Norway are all about. The songs on their debut self-titled CD bring to mind such influences as The Beatles, Big Star, and Love. Truly a band after IPO’s heart!
The Armoires -Hailing from Burbank, California, and led by duo Rex Broome and Christina Bulbenko, The Armoires draw on influences as diverse as ‘60s sunshine pop, new wave and postpunk, classic country and shoegazer dreampop. Their unique harmonies give life to literate and deeply felt tales of love, loss, confusion and joy, and they can be described as everything from a power-pop Gram and Emmylou, a janglier version of X, a new wave Fleetwood Mac, the New Pornographers for the lower 48…to the Postpunk Partridge Family! Their debut album, Incidental Lightshow, is being pressed as of this typing, and may even be available in time for their IPO Showcase!
The Arrogants -Since 2008, The Arrogants have explored ‘60s Mod sounds, Garage Rock, Psychedelic, Blues, R&B, first as a duo, then a trio, and now as a quartet complete with an organist to fill out their sound, which they’ve developed by building upon the deep roots of their glorious elders: bands like The Who, The Small Faces, The Standells, The Shadows of Knight, 13th Floor Elevators, Muddy Waters, Bo Diddley and Chuck Berry. These boys from Lille, France, will fit in just right at IPO and The Cavern, and we can hardly wait to see and hear them do their thing!
Ash of Donkey Hot Pink, unplugged -Donkey Hot Pink have become known for their antics on stage as well as for their powerful blend of punk and anthemic rock ballads, so we’re especially intrigued to see and hear what the lead singer and guitarist of the group from Mojacar, Spain, will do for his solo unplugged sets! One thing at least is certain: we’re in for a passionate performance where the Ash’s voice will take center stage!
The Beautiful Art of Decay -Influenced by The Velvet Underground, The Stooges, and Ziggy Stardust era Bowie, this Stockholm quintet are “the other ones…the ones on the other side of the street…the ones your mother warned you about”…in other words, they write and play great rock n’ roll. Check out their We Are The Other Ones EP to see and hear what we mean!
The Blow Up -A Parisian quartet who drop their Beatles influences (Revolver period) into a west coast acid rock sound (The Brian Jonestown Massacre style) to create their own psychedelic pop rock magic. The songs on their latest EP, Taste Like Desire, will also appeal to fans of Supergrass, Black Rebel Motorcycle Club, and The Junipers (see above). On stage, The Blow Up re-invent the essence of ‘60s pop with the intensity of their rock and panache, and we can’t wait to see them do their thing at IPO!
Bob’s Yer Uncle -Although the band comes from Chicago (where they’ve played IPO for the past few years), IPO Liverpool is also something of a homecoming for main man Adrian Matthews, who is originally from Liverpool! Bob’s Yer Uncle plays melodic rock with a bluesy edge featuring harmonies, incorporating an array of eclectic songs with no specific influences. That said, fans of Elvis Costello, The Stone Roses, and Yes are sure to appreciate them. Check out their recently released xplod-i-mite CD!
BUZZIE -Formed by lead singer/songwriter John McElhenney after leaving local Austin pop darlings Blue Cartoon (who brought their jangly harmonies to IPO Liverpool in 2004), Buzzie thrives on the 3:30 minute harmonic convergence with lyrics that are not about sex, or drugs, or being a rock star. Their latest album, Cooling My Jets, features acoustic versions of old favorites as well as some new tunes, and has been described as Wilco meets Radiohead unplugged! Check it out now!
Cocktail Slippers -IPO is thrilled to welcome one of our long-time favorite bands back to IPO Liverpool! Their latest album, People Talk, was released on Universal Norway and Wicked Cool, and is their best work yet! Fans of all kinds of FUN pop – from classic girl group to bubblegum, psychedelic pop, punk pop, and glam – will all find something to love. “[T]he Slippers sound a lot like the Go-Go’s but with gats in stead of L.A. cheer, and a mule kick in their high heels. It’s all retro action but written and detonated with the study and delight of modern rock & roll women in constant touch with their inner filly.” (David Fricke, Rolling Stone Magazine) When it comes to their live show, these ladies from Oslo really bring it, so don’t miss it!
COMPLESSO GLI ILLUMINATI -Their music is a modern mix of rhythm, harmony and the Gospel message, the path traced by the Second Vatican Council – which is appropriate, as they come to IPO from the environs of Vatican City! They are young people who sing to the Lord in joy and give a voice to the modern contemporary world prayer through the modern canons and fashion of “Beat.” Their 2013 Teen Sound Records Lumen Gentium LP will therefore appeal to fans of The Beatles, Pink Floyd, and The Pretty Things, to name just a few!
The Corridors -A band from Tel Aviv, Israel, currently based in London, who bring a unique combination of Chill Out and Electronic sounds mixed into their music, which – make no mistake – can really rock when it wants to! “…Why unique? Because their sound is made up of a multitude of instruments and sounds creating something contemporary, alternative and upbeat at the same time. Imagine INXS crossed with U2 and throw in Placebo or Smashing Pumpkins, you get one awesome mix. These guys are a real pleasure to listen to. Vocally Fantastic. Lyrically Brilliant and the music is ace” (Rockbandom Magazine) Check out their The Motion of the Wheels album to hear why they’ve become internet and alternative chart darlings!
Eldoradio -They unabashedly declare themselves as the future of rock n’ roll, and these gents from Trollhattan, Sweden just may be right! Their just released debut album, 21st Century Explosive Sound, is exactly what the name implies – in your face snarling guitars and cock-sure vocals, catchy pop hooks, bouncy Britpop energy, with the sheen of new wave! Fans of Arctic Monkeys, Oasis, and Echo and The Bunnymen will dig ‘em!
Jose Estragos Band -A singer/songwriter from Madrid, Spain, along with his band, who have become a much anticipated fixture at IPO Liverpool for the past three years, and are back to do it again! Their songs are heavily influenced by Lennon-McCartney and other Merseybeat greats, and their on-stage energy and obvious love for what they do is infectious! Check the merch tables for a copy of their latest Jose Estragos vol 3 album!
The Expected -By the side of the oldest church in Southern Finland, there’s a small cottage where four guys started jamming in the Spring of 2011, and we’re certainly glad they did! Dedicated to the mission of bringing great music to the masses, they blend influences from power pop, soul, R&B, psychedelica, and garage rock to create their own brand of insanely catchy pop. Fans of The Beatles, The Kinks, ELO, and The Rolling Stones will want to give their just released debut album, One, a listen!
Lannie Flowers -Although Flowers hails from the great state of Texas, he and his band have done what no other artist in the history of the LA Music Awards has done…namely, taking home four awards in a single year in 2013! His latest CD, New Songs, Old Stories, picks up where his earlier disc, Circles, left off, but rocks even harder! Badfinger-esque in-your-face guitars and vocal harmonies blend with softer shifting harmonies more reminiscent of XTC, but that fans of artists from The Raspberries to The Velvet Underground will be sure to appreciate! We also appreciate that he (with or without band, as he will be performing this year at IPO Liverpool) have played the IPO festival in many cities throughout the world and continue to do so, with no sign of slowing down!
Harvest Moon -Starting in the ‘90s as a band of three brothers from Son in The Netherlands, their music has always been influenced by the American west coast sound of the ‘60s and grunge of the ‘90s, but as the band has expanded to include new members, their influences have also grown to incorporate a heavy dose of Britpop and a touch of reggae to form their own unique and compelling sound. Their latest EP, In Tow, will appeal to fans of Neil Young, The Libertines, and Nirvana, to name but a few!
The Jeremy Band -The eponymous band led by one of the most genuine, nicest people on the pop scene, as well as one of the most prolific pop artists around. His gentle, John Lennon-influenced pop is as spiritual as it is melodic, and you can hear this for yourself on all of his CDs. This Michigander and his band can stake their rightful place in the IPO Hall Of Fame!
JLB & Villa Borghese -The loosely coupled entity of Villa Borghese exists solely as the current outlet to perform the songs of Stockholm-based singer/songwriter/guitarist Janne Leonard Borgh (aka Don Borghese) in a live band setting. Borgh, whether solo or in any of his band incarnations, certainly knows his way around a great melody and a catchy hook! He was a member of the first Swedish mod-revival band, The Moderns, who released an album on EMI-Parlophone and toured the UK with Echo & The Bunnymen in 1980, and Liverpool audiences may also recognize him as a member of The Repeatles, who played every International Beatles Week from 2003 through 2010. Fans of classic power pop and Americana bands – from The Beatles, Badfinger, and Big Star to The Records, The Replacements, and the harder rocking of Rush, will want to make a point of catching these guys at IPO, as to whether there will ever be any proper recordings is still written in the stars!
The Jooles -The Jooles celebrate pop n’ roll on a shag rug carpet; sometimes loud, sometimes low – but always with heart and soul. Influenced by the pop, rock and soul music from the ‘60s and ‘70s and their countless revivals, the four-piece from Berlin spotlights the one important thing: a good song. Check out their brand new album, Moving Memories, to hear what we mean…but you won’t want to miss their live show, as Daria is the consummate frontwoman!
The LaFollette Sisters (Cait Brennan Tribute) -Although Brennan herself was unable to travel to IPO Liverpool for health reasons, her backup singers (accompanied by her backing band, which is otherwise known as The Armoires – see above) have turned her slots into a tribute to her music, which we think is very cool! Brennan’s unique brand of glitter glam soulful rock n’ roll – inspired by greats such as Roy Orbison, Elton John, Freddy Mercury, John Lennon, and Etta James – on her Debutante album – has been shooting up the Amazon singer/songwriter charts, and has some critics already naming it as a contender for album of the year! We can’t wait to see and hear these songs done in a special tribute rendition!
Bill Lloyd -Although he’s best known as half of the late ‘80’s RCA country-rock duo, Foster and Lloyd, he has also had an illustrious career as a songwriter, sideman, producer, session player (working alongside greats such as Ray Davies, Glenn Tilbrook, and Martina McBride, to name just a few), and non-so-secret pop-meister. His 1994 album, Set To Pop, was even named one of the 200 top power pop albums of all time by acclaimed writer and pop aficionado John M. Borack! His latest release, Lloydering, features classic pop covers that have appeared on various tribute discs over the years, lovingly brought together in a single collection by the good folks at SpyderPop – check it out now, and don’t miss the special IPO showcase by this Nashville legend!
Lovely -A four piece band from Stockholm, Sweden. They do their own three part harmony based ‘60s influenced pop songs with a rhythm and blues spice. The main influences are the Beatles, the Rolling Stones and the Kinks. Lovely consists of Anders Axelsson (rhythm/lead guitar, vocals), Simon Svensson (bass, vocals), Ulf Jonsson (lead/rhyhtm guitar, vocals) and Jens Wicksén (drums).
Duncan Maitland -A singer/songwriter from Dublin who is quickly gaining notoriety in soft pop and psychedelic pop circles. His music is inspired by classic artists of the genre, such as The Beach Boys, XTC, The Lovin’ Spoonful, and The Small Faces, and his acclaimed debut album – on shiny red vinyl, no less! – is a trip through the acid-tinged English foothills of rainy day sunshine pop, guaranteed to give you sweet dreams!
The Manics -Purveyors of Rickenbacker-fueled rock n’ roll extraordinaire, this trio from Norrköping, Sweden, produce an upright, uncompromising and honest guitar based sound with lots of melody and energy, citing bands like The Jam, Stiff Little Fingers and Green Day as some of where they get their inspiration. The Manics are a band that stands for Rock n’ Roll…by that they mean music being played LIVE, being played from the HEART and being played with a LOVE for it all! Their recently released Headphones EP lets you take them home and love them some more!
The Mayflowers -They’ve been hailed by Powerpopaholic as “the most famous power pop band in Japan” with good reason! Their sound is upbeat and catchy – sounding at times like The Lolas and at other times like Farrah or Fountains of Wayne, and they’ve shared the stage with luminaries such as The Records, The Rubinoos, and Bowling For Soup. The mod/garage hooks and the tight harmonies on their latest CD, Ship of Theseus, will blow you away!
Gavin Mee -An authentic grassroots grown troubadour, Gavin Mee left his homeland of Ireland in 2006 equipped with his guitar and debut album (Breech Birth) to ply his trade through the theatres, clubs and festivals of Europe. During his time on the road Gavin has honed his craft and developed a unique style combining intricate finger picked tunes with captivating narratives. These travelled tales of nomadic inclinations inspired songs for his latest album, MeeMantras, which was completed back in his hometown of Dublin in collaboration with fellow songwriter/producer Duncan Maitland (see above). Fans of orchestrated soft pop of all shapes and sizes need to check this out!
Mondo Frowno -An alternative/grunge band based in Trento, Italy, with subtle nods to prog. Fans of Stone Temple Pilots, Franz Ferdinand, and The Killers should check out their MNDFRWN EP!
Neweva -Back for their third straight IPO Liverpool, this melodic pop rock quartet from Värnamo, Sweden, has an emphasis on strong vocals, fusing bits of soul and funk into their songs, drawing comparisons to artists such as Maroon 5 and Coldplay. They are gaining recognition beyond Swedish borders, with airplay on radio stations in various parts of Europe, and the release of their new single and video, “In Time”. They are also known for delivering a great live show that you will not want to miss!
One Two DIE Four -Formed by combining the talents of former members of Swedish pop band Becky Sharpe and metal band Centicore, Örebro and Stockholm-based One Two DIE Four create hooky harmony-laced pop-rock with attitude! Their recent album, Another, will appeal to fans of ‘90s-era Swedish pop, Queen, and ELO!
Matt Purcell & The Silverminers -Purcell had played in a number of bands in his former home of Sydney, Australia, before stepping out under his own name. He now resides in Dublin, and his new band The Silverminers is the perfect complement to his music combining influences from folk rock to power pop. Their debut single, “Carry Me Home,” will appeal to fans of Wilco, Big Star, and traditional Irish folk!
The Ratkellers -One listen to the songs on their The Savage Beat of The Ratkellers EP, and we knew these guys were born to play IPO Liverpool at The Cavern! This is foot-stompin’ booty-shakin’ R&B-inflected Merseybeat all the way! Barcelona’s answer (literally!) to New York’s The Beat Rats, who became an instant IPO Liverpool hit a few years ago, and we think their Spanish musical soul mates are set to follow suit!
Dave Rave -He began popping very powerfully indeed a near quarter century ago as part of the legendary Canadian bands Teenage Head and The Shakers, and has often been referred to as “The Canadian Nick Lowe.” In addition to being one of the most entertaining and hardworking power poppers around, he’s also been known to display his jazzy side on several collaborations with fellow Canadian singer/songwriter, Mark McCarron. A recent CD, Live With What You Know, was nominated for a Grammy, as was one of its songs, “Anne Marie”, and his latest CD, Sweet American Music, is quite probably his best ever!! From 2010 to 2014 he played 50 IPO festivals in a row (yes, you read that right), and he still plays many of them…and we look forward to many more. Thank you, Dave!!
Reveller -A new Dutch band formed by singer and guitarist Sven Sterk, bassplayer Ijsbrand Nieuwhof and drummer Simon Whitworth, who’s multi-layered productions contain a clever mix of acoustic and electronic elements. Their new EP, Achromatic, is influenced by artists such as David Bowie, Editors, and Cherry Ghost, but also strongly displays the band’s unique identity.
Hailee Rose -Any artist talented enough to become a protégé and backup singer of the venerable Dave Rave (see above) is bound to be worth a listen, and this up and coming young lady from Toronto is certainly deserving of such. Her style ranges from power pop to soul to blues and the power of her voice will blow you away! She is quite the dynamic live performer!
Serie B -Many say that rock is dead, but Serie B are a rock band and are here from Valencia, Spain to prove that rock must be understood as visceral, exciting, intense music….and alive, very much alive! Their references on their Heaven Underground album are broad: from Elvis (and before him) through the Who, The Kinks, Cheap Trick, Slade, Motorhead and on and on through the vast rock continuum, but imbued with the spirit of today!
The Shades -Made up of five hardworking, accomplished young musicians from Dublin, and taking inspiration from artists such as The Rolling Stones, The Beatles, Chuck Berry, as well as various Motown and Garage groups, The Shades are on their way to bringing their raw rock n’ roll inspired sound to the mainstream. They recently won ‘Best Newcomer’ at the Pure M Awards 2015, and have supported The Strypes at a sell¬out event in Dublin. With their first releases already in motion, a large catalogue of diversely influenced songs at the ready, and a thrilling live show, The Shades are an act not to be missed!
SHIRR -Inspired by albums such as Mylo Xyloto (Coldplay), Fading West (Switchfoot), and Night Visions (Imagine Dragons), SHIRR’s recent EP, Hearts, is a melodic treasure trove that reminds us to dream big, love completely, and fear not. SHIRR’s talent for insistent melody lines, inspiring stories, and kaleidoscopic drum patterns combine to move the listener above the waist…and below! She’s coming to Liverpool all the way from Boston, so don’t miss her IPO showcases!
Ruca Souza -A pure rock singer/songwriter, Souza’s songs are based upon classical guitar and the power of her voice. The fact that her guitar playing is mostly self-taught gives a special identity to her music. She’s been nominated for “Best New Artist” at the Music Prize of Santa Catarina in her native Brazil, and has received rave reviews for her debut album, Marte. IPO Liverpool marks the start of her worldwide journey to international rock stardom!
Tray Full Of Poppies -Influenced by artists such as The Beatles, The Everly Brothers, Roy Orbison, etc., Tray Full Of Poppies is a harmony pop duo from Stockholm featuring members of Lovely (see above) created to celebrate their mutual love of melodic music. Even more reason to celebrate: they are recording songs for a debut CD, which we are definitely looking forward to hearing!
Warm Morning Brothers -If their name conjures images of a lazy warm summer day, you’ll know they hit it spot-on with just one listen! The Simon & Garfunkel (and Cat Stevens) of Piacenza, Italy, who have also added a backing band so they can rock harder, are inspired by soft folk pop sounds of the ‘60s and ‘70s, and they invigorate that sound for the modern era in all that they do. We’re especially excited to welcome them back to this year’s IPO, as they’ve announced that their IPO showcase will be a live performance of their upcoming A Bunch Of Weeds album, which we can hardly wait to hear!