I’ve been looking forward to this moment for longer than is perhaps reasonably comfortable. That others may soon now have opportunity to share my awkward but justifiable man-crush upon the wistful baritone of Warrington’s Kieran Gallimore fills me with the kind of sacred inner warmth you can only usually achieve by nailing fifteen bowls of Ready Brek next to an open fire on a frosty morning.
Old Wounds, to be released on July 7th, is his opening solo salvo for Rest In Peace Records (Temple Songs, Dark Bells, Black Manila) and promisingly for a track which rests solely upon his aforementioned vocals and acoustic guitar, manages to tickle and taunt the old heartstrings in such a way that by the time it happens, it’s already too late. You’re already pressed up against the window, mournfully watching an overcast sky as raindrops become tears.
After years of watching Kieran’s promising projects threaten to outgrow Warrington’s slightly tepid musical fish bowl, I’ve never been more confident that this time he will find the audience his uncomplex but beguilingly brilliant creations deserve.
There is something very compelling about the music of Leeds based artist Joseph Lyons, and I was gutted to miss his recent performance for Now Wave at Sounds From The Other City. Eaves melancholy compositions are built around a beautifully fragile vocal that still manages to provide warmth and comfort. Pylons is no exception, exposing a raw quality that other artists struggle to find. The intimate nature of his work is balanced with exceptional songwriting craft, that could see him propelled into the spotlight.
Wrexham born troubadour Nathan Burton cut his teeth as a singer-songwriter in Manchester, released an EP on local indie Northern Ambition then promptly vanished, eloping to Paris. Now he’s on the move again, this time to London with a plush homespun album in tow. Even a casual listen to Penny Racer reveals Burton’s spent a significant chunk of time in Paris meticulously fine-tuning his craft.
Chinese Laundry sounds timeless and hauntingly pretty – Burton’s soulful lilting vocal packs a tender weathered charm. There are hints of Ryan Adams and Elliott Smith here and on the equally gripping How Are You? Accompanied by lush string arrangements, double bass, piano and drums his alt-country-tinged acoustic guitar music has a rich, full-bodied flavour. An enviable talent following his own path – Burton’s poised to make a mark.
Manchester based Tom Hardwick Allan is continuing to create alarmingly beautiful pieces of work, tiny glimpses into a man experimenting with his own mind. Sea Glass with looped vocals and almost spiritual moans, builds slowly into something heavenly. It takes a while to break through its delicate nature but it’s certainly worth the effort
Displaying full textural glory in 11 minute composition When You Die I’ll Think of You In The Sky, his music is uncompromising, incorporating elements of both noise and drone. These recordings might be challenging but it won’t be long before his ideas are transforming into something more accessible and ultimately more relatable.
After witnessing 2 truly compelling live performances in recent weeks, I’m starting to believe that Hardwick Allan is undergoing a musical development that could see the birth of a voice to believe in. Deep in tone with a rare affecting quality: it is this instrument he needs to uncover and find confidence in.