WEEKLY ROUND-UP (21.08.23) | NARC. | Reliably Informed | Music and Creative Arts News for Newcastle and the North East

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Reliably informed

Image: Deerhoof

Every week we pull together some of the best events taking place across the region, from music and theatre, to comedy, art and film. Read more on these, and other events, in the July issue of NARC. magazine – out now in print and online.

Hayley Ellis
Having wowed audiences as tour support for the likes of Sarah Millican, Jason Manford, Ellie Taylor and John Bishop, comedian and actress Hayley Ellis brings her new show, Hayley’s Comic, to Darlington. A show full of silly stories, observations and audience interactions, she expands on subjects including body confidence when ageing, family holidays and dinosaurs.
Thursday 24th August @ The Forum Music Centre, Darlington

Image: Hayley Ellis

In their 20 year career, Deerhoof have been twinkling away brightly, sparking interest with their brand of joyful, elated, breezy indie pop. With jaunty melodies, an uplifting world-view and vibrant, colourful sound palettes, the band’s discography is constantly evolving, weaving in new layers of flavour and intrigue, while never sacrificing their tenaciously engaging and euphoric spirit.
Miracle-Level is their 2023 release and has all the staples of a Deerhoof essential. The melodies are odd, the harmonies are dissonant and the compositions tread a peculiar line of familiar and alien. In other words, it’s a Deerhoof album. For anyone craving something fun or something unique, Deerhoof are bona fide trailblazers for the new age of creative indie expansion and are not a band to be missed!
Thursday 24th August @ Pop Recs Ltd., Sunderland

Johnny Marr
Having delivered an absolutely phenomenal show at the venue back in 2019, Johnny Marr, genius songwriter, guitarist and composer is making his way back to Middlesbrough to demonstrate exactly what makes him such an institution in British music history. Though the vast catalogue of The Smiths is rife within a Johnny Marr set-list, as he steps up to take over vocal duties on these solo tours, the set is also a showcase of his vast array of work since then. Having collaborated extensively with a range of indie bands and artists from The Pretenders, Talking Heads, The Cribs and Modest Mouse, as well as work with Hans Zimmer, the musical hero has a vast well of music to dig into. With his 2022 album Fever Dreams Pts 1-4 offering up an hour of Mancunian magic, the giant takes to the road to share his array of delicately detailed yet righteously anthemic tracks. Johnny Marr is a force of nature and it’s essential to watch this hit maker live.
Friday 25th August @ Middlesbrough Empire

Future Collaborations Festival
Organised by South Shields-based AutismAble CIC, the Future Collaborations Festival takes place at The Cluny 2 on Saturday 26th August, and will weave together the talents of neurodivergent and neurotypical people. The festival offers hands-on learning opportunities in all facets of event production, such as stage management and marketing, and will act as a vehicle for neurodivergent people to receive an introduction and work experience in the world of music event management.
The line-up is pretty special, and includes recent NARC. cover star and all-round sonic experimenter Me Lost Me, jazz popsters Archipelago, odd pop artist Amateur Ornithologist, revered local storyteller Nev Clay, psych folk artist Hollow Hand, songwriter Jamie Dickinson and talent from community-based music projects such as Not Too Old To Rock, Youth Music and We Make Culture.
Saturday 26th August @ The Cluny 2, Newcastle

Heading up proceedings is soul singer Carmy Love, who has has gained praise from BBC London, 6Music and many more for her outstanding vocal abilities. Growing up with a rich musical upbringing, Carmy channels a variety of influences resulting in a multi-faceted sound. Also performing are Manchester-based jazz/soul band Secret Night Gang, who are taking the music scene by storm with their eclectic orchestrations; the North East’s own soulful singer-songwriter Beth Macari is recognised for her powerhouse vocals, captivating performances and sound which draws on original soul music with a modern twist; and Newcastle’s Frankie Jobling takes inspiration from soul and jazz greats including Billie Holiday and Aretha Franklin, generating an impressive contemporary neo-soul sound. All this, plus vinyl DJ sets from the likes of Dave Oliver, Tosh and King Fred of Criss Cross Rhythms, Scott Wetherill and Mr Watson himself. Plus, it’s all free!
Sunday 27th August @ Darlington Market Place

Image: Hivemind, who play Veritas Festival

Veritas Festival
Veritas Promotions are a Northern promo company who put their all into their events, including (as a non-profit) their pay. They’ve had some blinding events in their home bases in Doncaster and Leeds with their annual Veritas Festival – and now they’re bringing their organisational know-how to Newcastle. Headliners Ten Eighty Trees have already established themselves with their infectious alt. rock anthems, and they’re flanked on all sides by frequent collaborators and equally endemic North East acts, amongst which you’ll find the ever-evolving riff-heavy rock band Hivemind, addictive joycore enthusiasts Kkett, and emotional alt. rockers Ruled By Raptors, plus sets from Dutch Elm, Belcarra, Redwood Grove and St Buryan. Prepare for a non-stop evening of some of the region’s most exciting unsigned, under-the-radar acts.
Sunday 27th August @ Trillians, Newcastle

Band of Holy Joy
With highly acclaimed new album Fated Beautiful Mistakes under their belts, cinematic indie pop band Band of Holy Joy once again grace the region with what promises to be a gorgeous show in intimate surroundings. Frontman Johny Brown is originally from North Shields, so this is a homecoming of sorts. Support comes from local artists Stannington
Sunday 27th August @ Three Tanners Bank, North Shields

Future Islands
Baltimore based synth pop band Future Islands broke out of the ‘have you heard this band’ slush pile almost a decade ago, when their performances on David Letterman and Jools Holland on either side of the pond became something of a meme. Singer Sam Herring’s ‘Morrissey-as-an-ice-skating-evangelical-preacher’ performance elevated their song Seasons – which is otherwise a sombre, introspective vista of listless Americana, into a huge hit. So their show at Middlesbrough Town Hall on Monday 28th August promises an incredible showcase of frontman shenanigans from a singer who puts an almost worrying amount of energy into every single show. But behind that, the band have amassed a back catalogue of subtle, genre spanning synth-based reflections that are poetic and hypnotic, taking a mosaic of influences from the romanticism of new wave, and the passion of post-punk, to the driving simplicity of Krautrock.
Monday 28th August @ Middlesbrough Town Hall

Image: Future Islands by Morgan Sinclair

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