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Native Harrow, April 17, 2021

“I dug myself out from the well to make Closeness a record about love”, professes Devin Tuel, from the Eastern Pennsylvania home she shares with her partner, Stephen Harms. Together the two make up the folk rock outfit, Native Harrow. “When I sat down to begin what would become Closeness I felt that above all, I wanted to make it clear that, while the clock is moving, we can hold onto one another and maybe there will be tears but there will also be laughter.” Closeness , the fourth LP from Native Harrow, exists at the intersection of two winding roads; time and motion. The album opens like the shot of a cannon with “Shake”, a rocking confessional about riding anxiety’s elevator. If this is any indication of where the band have been since last we heard from them (2019’s, Happier Now ), time has moved on and with it life has evolved and unfolded. Time moves away, takes what it can carry … I have seen how it ends, thru the edges of time … Time turns away so quickly, quiet as it goes … It’s the same every time … Time’s gonna get harder but you’ve gotta carry on … Watch the weeks go by, my how the years have gone by … I can’t quiet my head of the sounds of time rolling by … From the winding years, there is a season for all to unfold … Time moves forward, and I gave up that chase. Today, the band are reflecting on not only this new record but how now, months after its recording wrapped, it feels ever prescient. Tuel takes us back to when she was writing the album and the early days of Closeness ’ conception, “For this record I really wanted to tell stories. Our stories from the last two years, from the weeks leading up to recording, tales from other lifetimes, and stories from where I fear this world is heading.” When it came time to record the songs, the band decamped to Reliable Recorders in Chicago, IL to once again work with drummer and engineer, Alex Hall. The 10 tracks of Closeness were recorded over two sessions; three December days in the dying light of 2019 and the first three new days of January 2020. Similar to the process of making Happier Now , the sessions were firstly focused on documenting trio performances that captured Tuel’s master vocal takes live in the room, guitar in hand, with Harms on bass and Hall on drums. Closeness elaborates on the group’s radiant warmth and timeless nostalgia with the inclusion of new sounds and experiences. The combustible fuzz-driven opener “Shake” gives way to slices of 70s FM groove (“The Dying of Ages” and the desert funk of “If I Could”), 60s art pop (“Even Peace” and the expansive orchestral “Sun Queen”), and the kind of graceful folk (“Smoke Burns”) and folk soul (the compassionate conviction of “Carry On”) the band is best known for. The intricate polyrhythms and grinding Moog synthesizer (“Same Every Time”), the fully realized vintage jazz combo (“Turn Turn”), and the exquisite piano ballad (the penultimate “Feeling Blue”) provide glimpses down previously unexplored streets and find the band stretching out and confidently illuminating their expansive aspirations.

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This Is The Kit, November 7, 2021

A special double show to celebrate 40 years of live music at the Railway. Both shows are sold out.

Matinée: https://www.wegottickets.com/event/503436
Evening: https://www.wegottickets.com/event/503437
Double ticket for both shows: https://www.wegottickets.com/event/503439

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Peter Bruntnell Band plus support, March 26, 2021

We are keeping fingers crossed this show will go ahead as normal. It’s a year late but we couldn’t celebrate 40 years of live music at the Railway without Peter Bruntnell!

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Loco-Motion

A full-colour, 32 page magazine detailing the history of the Railway Inn as it celebrates forty years of presenting live music. Available to pre-order now here: https://sc4m.co.uk/order-loco-motion/

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sc4m at Rhythmtree – July 10, 2021

Postponed until Saturday, July 10, 2021.

The line-up remains the same:

John Murry

The Little Unsaid

Maz O’connor

The Blood Choir

March

Tali Trow

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Two very special house concerts with Robyn Hitchcock 18 and 19 September 2021

Rescheduled to 18 and 19 September 2021. Tickets remain valid.

Supports:

18th: Lucy Kitchen

19th: Lucas and King

Two unique and intimate shows with one of the world’s most distinctive singer-songwriters. Hampshire connections make this a must, as Robyn performs in a house concert setting for just 35 people. This is a private show with all income going to the artist. To secure a place for one of the shows, you can make your contribution by getting your ticket here.

Robyn Hitchcock is one of England’s most enduring contemporary singer/songwriters and live performers. A surrealist poet, talented guitarist, cult artist and musician’s musician, Hitchcock is among alternative rock’s father figures and is the closest thing the genre has to a Bob Dylan (not coincidentally his biggest musical inspiration).

Since founding the art-rock band The Soft Boys in 1976, Robyn has recorded more than 20 albums as well as starred in ‘Storefront Hitchcock’ an in concert film recorded in New York and directed by Jonathan Demme. 

Blending folk and psychedelia with a wry British nihilism, Robyn describes his songs as ‘paintings you can listen to’. His most recent album is self-titled and marks his 21st release as a solo artist. Out on April 21 2017, the album is produced by Brendan Benson (The Raconteurs). Hitchcock describes it as a “ecstatic work of negativity with nary a dreary groove.” 

It has received rave reviews from UNCUT, Rolling Stone, Paste, Tidal and more. 

“A gifted melodist, Hitchcock nests engaging lyrics in some of the most bracing, rainbow-hued pop this side of Revolver. He wrests inspiration not from ordinary life but from extraordinary imaginings…” – Rolling Stone

“These 10 gems slither, rock, roll, glide and shapeshift, coalescing around Hitchcock’s typically anxious, strained but striking and immediately identifiable vocals.” – American Songwriter

“Beloved of everyone from Led Zeppelin to REM, Hitchcock has only enhanced his status with this wonderful outing.” – Hot Press

“Witty, moving and seriously catchy, Robyn Hitchcock is a glorious return for a man who wasn’t really gone in the first place.” – Paste Magazine  

Robyn Hitchcock
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Railway 40 – a Double Show with the Felice Brothers on June 20 – rescheduled

RESCHEDULED

These shows have been rescheduled for June 19, 2021. All tickets remain valid.

There will be two shows at the Railway Inn in Winchester: an afternoon show at 2pm and an evening one at 8pm. You can buy an afternoon or evening ticket for £20 or a double ticket for both shows for £35. The shows will not be identical. Tickets will go on sale on January 17 at 10 am.

Cut live to tape with very little overdubbing, the new Felice Brothers album Undress was recorded in the late summer of 2018 in Germantown, New York. Band members Ian Felice, James Felice, Will Lawrence (drums) and Jesske Hume (bass) teamed up with producer Jeremy Backofen to record their most personal and reflective album to date.

Undress follows the band’s 2016 album Life In The Dark, and finds the group in a very different place three years later. Between personnel changes, families growing and the political landscape, the result is a tighter, more-paired down release. “Every song is a story,” said James Felice. “On this album everything was a bit more thoughtful, including the arrangements, the sonic quality and the harmonies.”

“Many of the songs on the new album are motivated by a shift from private to public concerns,” says songwriter Ian Felice. “It isn’t hard to find worthwhile things to write about these days, there are a lot of storms blooming on the horizon and a lot of chaos that permeates our lives. The hard part is finding simple and direct ways to address them.”

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Banjo on my Knee out now!

It’s the perfect gift for anyone interested in music, travel and Americana. Available from Amazon, or any bookshop, or direct from me.

Part travelogue, part guide book, part music memoir but mainly observational nonsense – Banjo On My Knee shows you how to survive a three-week journey through the music of America’s South and avoid some of the pitfalls of US travel.

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ZANDER out now!

Oliver Gray’s day job is writing school text books and non-fiction items, but his hobby is promoting live shows by visiting roots artists from the US and Canada. When contemplating his first foray into fiction, he was advised to “write about what you know about”. It’s therefore no surprise that “Zander” is set in the world of small-time music promotion.

When American roots musician Corey Zander sets out on his first UK tour, things start badly and rapidly get worse. Not even his drug-strewn rock and roll past could prepare him for the violence of his reception in provincial England.

We hope you will enjoy it.

BUY NOW FROM AMAZON! Or download the Kindle version.