BBC - Stoke & Staffordshire - Subculture - Music & Band News
BBC HomeExplore the BBC
This page was last updated in March 2010We've left it here for reference.More information

14 July 2014
Accessibility help
Text only

BBC Homepage

Local BBC Sites

Neighbouring Sites

Related BBC Sites

Contact Us

Like this page?
Send it to a friend!



You are in: Stoke & Staffordshire > Subculture > Music & Band News

What's on in 2-Tone week?

It's going to be a ska-core Xmas

Music & Band News

Subculture is at the forefront of, er, everything. So, reporting news of what's happening on the Staffordshire & S Cheshire local unsigned bands scene is just part of what we do..


SahReal - Photo by Scream-Ape


This is stuff we wrote about before, and is out of date now


Rob Adcock and Matt from Bloc Party

Rob meets Matt from Bloc Party

Novellos new

The Novellos released their new single 'Not So Sure' on the 4th of October. The guys played it on SUBCulture for the first ever time last month. The band are hoping for similar success to their last single 'The Lady is Not for Turning', which went top 10 in the indie charts.

Bang yer wolves

Crewe’s Sgt Wolfbanger have finally stopped ligging with McFly, Attack! Attack! and Sad Day For Puppets just long enough to launch their first album, ‘Think Inside The Box’.

Drummer Nath said: “We’ve been recording tracks at Prism Studios as we’ve been going along. We had about 24 songs and have chosen the best of those.”

SahReal....for real

Congratulations to Newcastle-Under-Lyme duo SahReal who're celebrating after winning a national songwriting competition called Make it, Break it.

Club Sumo team

The Club Sumo team

If you want to find out more about the 2 sisters - Sarah and Rachel Wood - and hear their winning song "Wine" click onto their website at

SUBCulture exclusive - Bloc Party to split!

When SUBCulture presenter Rob caught up with Bloc Party drummer Matt Tong before their gig at the Sugarmill in mid-October he told him the band is planning a long break, and that he "wouldn't mind trying something else for a while".

The band are in the middle of a month-long UK tour, but "unfortunately that is going to be it for the time being", Tong told us. He said, "We definitely need to have a break and gain a bit of perspective on life outside of the band."

Check out the full interview by going to SUBCulture main page.

Club Sumo

The first ever indie club night in Crewe launched on Saturday Oct 17. It's called Club Sumo and will take place at Square One in Mill Street.

The first night will will feature a live show from the Sumo Kings and acoustic artist Jasmin Dean and all the best current and classic tunes from DJ Pelvis Resley, who'll be playing a variety of classic indie, electro and new and local music.

It's the brainchild of local DJ Tim Dougill, Square One’s Natalie Hand and Jamie Oliver, drummer with Crewe band the Sumo Kings (hence the club name!)

Jamie says, "Stoke has the Sugarmill and Manchester has Fifth Avenue and 42nd Street, so we thought ‘why travel so far to hear good music?’ We can do it right on our own doorstep."

For more info visit

Ears not needed

Did you go to the Part Chimp gig at Fat Cats recently? Loud? LOUD? Yes it was. You could feel the music in yer ribcage.

Sugababes loss, Polydor's gain

Good luck to Jess Icke, from South Cheshire College Performing Arts course, who made it the final stages of the auditions for a new girl-band. Polydor Records will let her know "in due course".
Shame that the vacant Sugababes position has already gone...

Lichfield Roots Go Local

One of the features of the 1st Lichfield Folk & Roots Festival to be held at Lichfield Guildhall over the week-end of October 2nd-4th will be the opportunity for local performers to appear.

On the opening evening Friday 2nd local singer/songwriter Emma Rushton will open the festival. The following afternoon from 1.30pm, local unplugged/acoustic performers will have the opportunity for 15 minute spots to showcase their work: just ring Stuart Davies on 01543-262223 for info.
This is a FREE concert , so if you want just to listen, just turn up on the door.

Metal babe-licious

After six months, Metalicious heads to the big Number Five this Sunday (27th Sept) in Stoke on Trent, with Hanging Iscariot top of the tree (black humour intended) on the night.... Extreme OD will be doing the soundtracks between bands. If you like it blasting, a Metalicious night is for you. Whether the trademark pole-dancers will be there though this weekend is anyone's guess.
Here’s the web - but be careful, the zero in the middle of the URL is intentional! -

Lost.. in a field

Hurrah! Lost Scenes got their new release to video - despite mud, mid-Staffordshire grey skies, and damp skins (drums included).
Flashgun Films, in association with Knype Entertainment, another music-loving local organisation, put together theband's “Young Lovers” song music video - in a field in Stone (mid-Staffordshire)!
Happy fans danced along to the music to give the video a min-Glasto feel.
To view the film, go here:

Mystery at the Green Star

The place with the biggest claim to be ‘The rock pub of the moment’ has got to be the Green Star in Smallthorne (at the top end of Stoke on Trent if you don’t know it).
Playing bands up to five times a week, its foundations must be shaky by now.

Music in study

Thanks to Lucy, who reminded us that the specialist music technology facilities at Newcastle-under-Lyme College are coming along nicely. Students enrolling on their new BTEC National Diploma in Music Technology in 2009 will be able to use the state-of-the-art facilities - so, computer music, sampling and sequencing... here we come!

Selling Out? OR Changing Style?

Steve Harvey tells us that he often hears about people attacking artists for selling out (changing their style to make more money) but is wondering if that is such a big deal? Follow his discussion on the ‘Stoke Bands Network’ site – go to and check out the site’s Forum

Yet another newsletter

Maybe it does your head in too, getting all these e-newsletters and stuff, but the ‘Unsigned Guide’ one might be worthwhile. It seems to be taking off with lots of contacts etc, and we find the e-newsletter saves us checking and checking their site. See and click on the newsletter bit.
Still, you don’t want too many newsletters stuffing your inbox, do you?

Goodbye Hudson

Friday 21st August – Get yer hankies out and sob. Hudson (Zoey says they can be compared to Sum 41) play their last ever gig - at The Sugarmill, supported by Hanging Iscariot. Their EP comes out a while later though – in December.

Keep the kids out of the pubs

Clive wrote in to tell us of a gig that's taking place at The MET Studio, Gatehouse Theatre on Mon 24 August 2009. Two bands and two solo artists are taking part, all young, local musicians who have come through local schools. You may be familiar with one or two of them... Metrognomeband / Weareaudiocrime / Ipretendtoplayguitar

They're looking to kick start a programme of similar events to give other local youngsters the chance to play at a good venue. Hopefully, the local Council with some sponsorship (Stafford Newsletter? etc.) may be able to get this moving forward.
As he says, "there are a lot of talented kids out there having to lie about their age so they can get to play live, mainly in pubs.... and this is a better option for them if it works".

Strangers Need Not Apply

• Three members of One Horse Race from Alsager are re-forming as a new band. This is due to university commitments. Good Luck guys!
• Mistaken For Strangers have announced they are adding a new member! For more on this listen to the Subculture show of 6 August, or see

Radio 1 - second home

Scott from our BBC Introducing 'SubCulture' show can't stop getting on to Radio 1. Did you hear him bigging up The Ritz with Steve Lamacq the other week?

Skull... dead?

What's happened to the Skull Club blog - Tamworth's online contributuion to the unsigned bands scene? All seems very quiet at Anyone know why?

Lets go GA GA!

Kid British - who have done some recent stunning gigs in north Staffordshire opened the new under 18's club night at the Leek Road Venue Students Union, in Stoke on July 19th. The GA GA night continues every Sunday.
You can visit if you want to sign up to their joining list.


SIX local bands need your support to get them to the final of the UK's Surface Unsigned Best Band ’09.

The Surface Unsigned Birmingham regional semi finals are still taking place, but time is running out to send text votes for your favourite bands.
Hollywood Tease are stepping up to the stage on the 6 August and The SlipHouse Fairys take over on Friday 7 August.

However there is success already for Stoke’s scene as local band The Fears, have got through to the finals of the netx region up, the Manchester region. Back at the beginning of July the lads qualified for the Manchester finals, and now these finals are quickly approaching, as they take to the stage once again to wow in early September.
The voting system is different in the regionals, as audience votes don't count, and out of fourteen bands, two will go through on judges’ decisions, and one band on text votes. You can start voting now.

Hollywood Tease (Stoke-On-Trent), The Sliphouse Fairys (Stoke-On-Trent), The Myways (Burton-On-Trent), Something To Write About (Stafford), Lost Scenes (Stoke-On-Trent) and Maybe This Friday (Stoke-On-Trent) are all competing in the the Midlands Semi-Final Showcases which are continuing till 9th August 2009 at The Asylum Bar and Venue, 38-43 Hampton Street, Birmingham, B19 3LS. Make sure you check out which date your band is playing on.
Go to - for the Midlands division of the competition.

Staffs is their asylum

Nice to hear from The Asylum Soldiers ("pop punk phenomenon - straight out of Cardinal Griffin Catholic High") who conquered Staffordshire in the Staffordshire Rocks final in early July 2009.
They told the world: ".......OMG! i still dont think its sunk in that we've won we had such a great day and that just rounded it off nicely... i'd like to say a big thank you on behalf of the rest of TAS to evry1 who came.. you all rocked ...i dont think we wud of won without you..."

The Cannock based band scooped the title with two of their own songs, Wake Up and No Rights Without A Fight. Judge Paul Wilcox commented: the band was “Very tight: they stamped down and made their mark on the performance” with “musically intelligent songs”.

The Asylum Soldiers are Adam MacGuire on Lead guitar and Vocals, Bass guitar, Andy Woodgate, Drums, Ben McCormick and rhythm guitar and vocals Dan Taylor.
Two of the main prizes they won were:
• a day in a professional recording studio to have a record created and produced, courtesy of Inspire Music in Stone.
• And a professional band video and soundtrack made.

With these prizes and their new title, 'Staffordshire Rocks Winning Band 2009', they are well on their way to stardom.
The boys will be doing a number of gigs throughout the summer. Catch them at Burntwood Wakes Festival 09 on 7th August.
Listen to the band yourself at

...Acoustic CD

The Skinnies (who refer to themselves as a trio of neo-trotsky communist radicals), The Low Orders, The Maffia Kings, Out in the Crowd, Summer Sundays, and Nuclear Minogue were all at the Acoustic Tent at this year’s Fuse Festival in Lichfield.

But.. with the need for extra security this year, costs soared - which is where you can help! To help raise the extra money required some of the local artists have donated their music to the Fuse CD which features 15 tracks. Check out


Unsigned website…

Another support site for unsigned bands has popped up. ‘Keynote Unsigned’ is getting radio stations to register with them with a view to getting some air time for their artist members.
Check out – and tell us what you think of it too

Tamworth rocked

Talking of BoB events, The Tamworth Battle of The Bands line-up saw thirty bands(!!) appearing over the six separate days between Friday 29th May to Friday 3rd July …

Heat 1 – Friday 29th May ---- 8pm – Keep The Promise / 8.30pm – Risen Fear / 9pm – Second Time Round / 9.30pm – Electric Cake Salad / 10pm – The Cosmic Vortex of Doom
Heat 2 – Friday 5th June ---- 8pm – Exile:Park / 8.30pm – Unique Destruction / 9pm – Demise / 9.30pm – Kohk / 10pm – Decorum
Heat 3 – Saturday 13th June ---- 8pm – After The Sunset / 8.30pm – Brick / 9pm – Echo Empire / 9.30pm – Savana / 10pm – The Owsla
Heat 4 – Friday 19th June ---- 8pm – Dirty Requests / 8.30pm – Karsis / 9pm – Double Time Heroes / 9.30pm – Red Ghosts of European Time / 10pm – Quarantine 38
Heat 5 – Saturday 27th June ---- 8pm – Plain Mischief / 8.30pm – Palm Five / 9pm – Sausage Fest / 9.30pm – At The Zoo / 10pm – Lets Burn Barney
Heat 6 – Friday 3rd July ---- 8pm – Bushido / 8.30pm – Thunder flash / 9pm – The Oceans Surrender / 9.30pm – Everybody Looks Famous / 10pm – Furyan

It's amazing to realise how popular this event us. Registration for it opened on March 6th; and all 30 bands had signed up within 2 hours!

Playing with Hawkwind?

Staffordshire's Sky Studios are laying on a one day festival on 12th July 2009 at Biddulph Grange Country Park in the Moorlands. Hawkwind will headline the event with Forever Never and Crave.
They are looking for the fourth band to open the evening event - IS THAT YOU?

If you are up for it, Sky are holding 3 "Battle of the Band" evenings where you will need to play for 20 minutes to try to impress your crowd.
These will be held at Knypersley Sports Club on 25th April, 22nd May and 20th June (PA, drums and backline supplied).
The top 3 from each night will get free beer and food on the festival day (yee-ha!) and will play again on the main stage in the day-time to battle it out in a final.

The eventual winners will open the main event that evening in front of a 1500 capacity crowd as a support to Hawkwind.
Votes will be by text from your fans and will be held open for 3 weeks after each event; and for the day on the festival day.
You can enter at -


Heard of 'Sound Check'? Well, it's a Staffordshire project helping teenagers form bands. Now prepare for .... Sound Check Live!
The event, which is also in association with Love Music Hate Racism, see musicians from each of the regional 'Sound Check' centres (situated in Bentilee, Cheadle, Chesterton, Rocester and Rugeley) do it for real at the Underground Club in Hanley, on May 27. It's in partnership with Staffordshire & Stoke on Trent Youth Services.
Contact 'Make Some Noise' on 01785 278 454.

Exclusively on the SubCulture show, 'Love Music Hate Racism' announced that Pete Doherty would be co-headliner with Kelly Rowlands at this year's festival (at the Britannia Stadium in Stoke on May 30th). Our Rob was speechless for 0.5 seconds (a new record).

Psycho so-close
Commiserations to Psycho Circus, from Perton in South Staffs... who were Staffordshire's representatives at the Midlands Battle of The Bands Grand Final at the Civic in Wolverhampton. Huge support and a cracking act helped but (almost Chelsea-Barcelona style) they were pipped into second place by winners CCL.
After three months, sixteen heats (with 70 bands) and six semi-finals, watched by over 2500 fans, they were so close to that first prize of 1000 plus photo shoot & studio time.
In case you don't know them (shame on you) Psycho Circus are best described as raw rock n' roll - web is


last updated: 10/12/2009 at 20:52
created: 10/04/2009

You are in: Stoke & Staffordshire > Subculture > Music & Band News

About the BBC | Help | Terms of Use | Privacy & Cookies Policy