1 Mar 2024

It's Bandcamp Friday!


It's Bandcamp Friday....so as always it is the perfect time to pick up something great from the rocket Bandcamp. 

Four of Rockets latest releases are:

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Ex Easter Island Head – Norther LP
The band's first album since 2016 and the first on Rocket – we are so humbled to be releasing this unique album by the incredibly unique band.

The Utopia Strong – The BBC Sessions LP/CD
You need this for the cover alone! Chuffed to be able to release this great session onto a physical format – a very nice stopgap until the next album proper.

Alison Cotton – Engelchen LP
Alison returns with a new album of incredibly powerful songs, an album that starts with an immersive side long track, essential listening.

Thee Alcoholics – Feedback LP
This mighty album by The Alcoholics was released last week onto a very unsuspecting but now an extremely grateful world. Get intoxicated.

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Not only that, we still have ltd copies of the albums we released at the end of 2023 by Teeth Of The Sea, Bonnacons Of Doom, Yoke and Goat etc. 

Also our Bandcamp is stocked-up of lots of European distributor warehouse finds that we had shipped back. So as always, there's lots of great releases and t-shirts from many of your Rocket faves awaiting you:

Rocket Bandcamp

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23 Feb 2024

Goat announce UK live dates


Goat shows are rare, so we are extremely thrilled to reveal that over two weekends in October and November, the band will be heading to the UK for six shows.

Now before you ask, we are gutted to say that the band can't play any more shows in 2024. We know a lot of fans in the North of England, Scotland, Wales and Ireland will be disappointed to not see them playing locally, but sadly it was just not possible to make it happen this time.

Tickets for these six shows go on presale at 10am on 1st March via the links below:

24 Oct / London / Troxy
Tickets

25 Oct / Bristol / 02 Academy
Tickets

26 Oct / Manchester / Academy 1
Tickets

14 Nov / Norwich / UEA
Tickets

15 Nov / Oxford / 02 Academy
Tickets

16 Nov /  Nottingham / Rock City
Tickets

And don't forget, Goat's score for Shane Meadows 'The Gallows Pole' series is being released as a special expanded vinyl edition via 'Record Store Day' participating shops on 20 April.

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Thee Alcoholics album 'Feedback' is released today


“Gratifying slabs of sludge-punk mayhem.”
The Quietus

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“Simply no fucking about, no hyperbole...this is the shit.” The Sleeping Shaman

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“Filthy, raw and impressively intense." Louder Than War


Thee Alcoholics – the London 5 piece formed by ex Hey Colossus member Rhys Llewellyn release their debut Rocket album 'Feedback' today.  

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'Feedback' is available now on Ltd Edition Yellow Vinyl via Bandcamp or from your favourite Record Shop:

Bandcamp

Thanks to a hold-up in customs the mailorder copies are not going to be shipped until next week annoyingly. But copies should be in shops from today.

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Cranky and cantankerous yet lysergically aligned, 'Feedback' is mesmeric rock with swagger, warped into sci-fi shapes by the spirit and sonics of bass and soundsystem culture. The psychedelic shapes here are redolent of the ur-klang of The Fall and the monolithic lurch of The Heads, the motorik malevolence less an uplifting trip to the heavens than a drill down to the earth’s core.

Discernible in these jackhammer beats, grimly murmured vocals and delirious dirges to certain heads may be the trash futurism of Chrome, the decomposed stomp of unsung legends Earl Brutus and the electro-punk attack of Six Finger Satellite, yet all of the above co-ordinates are waylaid effortlessly by a balls-out intensity and a fearsome intent on aural oblivion at all costs.

'Feedback' may be elemental and primal, yet this is no psych comfort-blanket nor retro-fetishism, rather a repetition-driven journey headlong into intimidating territory unknown. Get on board, and strap yourselves in for a bumpy ride.

Get intoxicated on Thee Alcoholics live experience at one of these shows:

23 Feb / Newcastle / The Lubber Fiend
24 Feb / Nottingham / Chameleon
29 Feb / Bristol / The Crown
01 Mar / London / Moor Vaults Brewery

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20 Feb 2024

Ex-Easter Island Head announce forthcoming album release on Rocket

We are thrilled to reveal that Ex-Easer Island Head – a band we have been huge fans of for many years, are releasing 'Norther' – their first album since 2016 on Rocket Recordings.

Watch the Tommy Husband made video for the album's title track above.

This is what the band have to say about the shimmering beauty of this first single: "'Norther' makes a determined line for the horizon on a piece that finds them somewhere between Arnold Dreyblatt's Orchestra of Excited Strings and the shimmering minimalism of Kompakt records. Two guitars with their frets pulled off and with brass rods inserted beneath the strings create a chorusing, chiming lattice of alternately muted and unmuted strings, propelled forward by an insistent two note motif, pulsing kick drum and sliding slabs of downtuned bass. Bowed strings at the mid section give way to an eerie soaring melody from a wind-driven Aeolian harp before the band kicks back in with driving, hypnotic percussion."  

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'Norther' is being released on 17 May, but you can preorder now on ltd edition vinyl via this bandcamp link, or from your local record shop:

Bandcamp

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Watch Ex-Easter Island Head's mesmerising live show here:

17 May / Bristol / Cube Microplex
18 May / London / Stoke Newington Old Church (Matinee and Evening) 
24 May / Manchester / St. Michael's 
25 May / Sheffield / Sidney and Matilda
31 May / Hebden / Hebden Bridge Trades Club
07 June / Brighton / The Hope
08 June / Cambridge / Storey's Field Centre

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In meteorology, the word Norther refers to a cold wind that blows down from the North. For Ex-Easter Island Head, it’s also an apt title for the strange and multi-faceted sound of their new album, their first since 2016, which drifts from billowing clouds of melancholy to propulsive hypnotic headwinds.

Years in the making and crafted in their home studio housed within the former Brazilian consulate in Liverpool, the music is an ever shifting thrum of sounds, both acoustic and electronic, which appears to teem and squirm, yet which moves as part of one mighty breeze.

Building on over a decade of activity, Ex-Easter Island Head have long been a cherished part of the UK underground. Functioning variously as a kind of deconstructed rock band, ambient chamber ensemble and minimalist compositional workshop, on 'Norther' we find the group combining their wide musical experience into something singular and coherent with a deeply emotional core.

Largely orbiting around their extended use of the electric guitar, their approach might at times recall the experiments of Rhys Chatham and Glenn Branca, but across the album we see a band whose musical vision extends well beyond the iconoclasm of 80's New York. Drawing on hypnotic musics from across the spectrum, they bring a compositional approach to sounds often associated with freeform sprawl or more academic settings, never letting pathos be lost to process. Equally reminiscent of the gentle rolling momentum of The Necks as they are the coiled precision of an act on Kompakt; this is a music which ebbs and flows, lives and breathes.

The record consists of six pieces, each of which demonstrates an entirely different creative process. On blossoming opener ‘Weather’, whirring motors are made to dance fairy-like atop guitar strings and drums before being overwhelmed by great thrusts of bass; on the dizzying ‘Magnetic Language’ the band’s voices are played back through their phones and amplified with guitar pickups, magnets wrapped in copper wire, a conversation between technology old and new. The title of penultimate piece ‘Golden Bridges’ refers to the brass rods the band shift beneath the strings of their guitars to create its glowing cascade of harmonics.

All, however, tap to one degree or another into that abiding theme of the weather, not least the title track for which the band erected a ramshackle aeolian harp –an instrument played by the wind – on the roof of a former meteorological observatory on The Wirral. With it they captured an actual norther, bottling its elemental power for their own devices. When examining their specimen they found a deep resonance between the sounds it made, which are eerily akin to guitar feedback, and the quest to extract rich overtones from the instrument that has remained a constant through their career as experimental outliers.

Despite the long wait since their last full length, the band’s creative drive has been ceaseless in that time. Those eight years away were defined by collaborations, solo excursions and one-off performances – whether external projects like Dialect, The Aleph and Land Trance, their part in the Salford Large Ensemble of Northern underground musicians or Whistling Arrow, with Laura Cannell and Charles Hayward, a site-specific series of shows in Odense, Denmark, work with classical musicians like the BBC Philharmonic and Immix Ensemble, or ambitious educational projects with schoolchildren in Liverpool and Newcastle. “Nearly all of these have played into the direction the material on Norther has taken,” says the band’s Benjamin D. Duvall.

“All of the projects we were involved in between 2016 and 2024 have expanded the boundaries of what we do by exposing us to a huge variety of instruments, personalities and ways of working. It's really allowed us to see the purity of making music with a four-piece group.”

That status as a quartet is a new one, with longstanding friend and collaborator Andrew PM Hunt (Dialect) now a permanent fixture. Having a member of the band handling recording and mixing has helped the band push further into their own language, moving beyond simple documentation, as on previous albums, into a lush, technicolour vision all of their own.


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19 Feb 2024

Thee Alcoholics reveal new track 'Dumb & Happy'



Ahead of Friday's anticipated release of Thee Alcoholics album 'Feedback' we are excited to share with you another track.

'Dumb & Happy' has the swagger and hiss through the repetitive riff which signifies Thee Alcoholics sound. Layers of fuzz and call to arms from a late night disturber of the peace creep out over organ drone and a ferocious monotonous rhythm.

Watch the video above made by Chris Spalton.

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'Feedback' is released on 23 February – but you can preorder now on Ltd Edition Yellow Vinyl:

Bandcamp

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Get intoxicated on Thee Alcoholics live experience at one of these shows:

21 Feb / Manchester / The Peer Hat
22 Feb / Derby / Dubrek Studios
23 Feb / Newcastle / The Lubber Fiend
24 Feb / Nottingham / Chameleon
29 Feb / Bristol / The Crown
01 Mar / London / Moor Vaults Brewery



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15 Feb 2024

Goat reveal Record Store Day expanded vinyl release of 'The Gallows Pole: Original Score'


Following the original, digital only, release of Goat’s score for ‘The Gallows Pole’ TV series, we are now thrilled to announce an expanded, ltd edition vinyl version, which will be released as part of Record Store Day 2024 on 20 April.

‘The Gallows Pole’ is a three-part Element Pictures production, written and directed by Shane Meadows which was aired in the UK on BBC Two and BBC iPlayer.

This new vinyl version of the ‘The Gallows Pole: Original Score’ differs from the previous digital release as it now only features the music which was specifically written for the series itself – it doesn’t include the three, previously released back catalogue tracks. Instead, this vinyl edition contains three ‘unused/unreleased’ tracks: ‘Goat Witch’, ‘Timeless Awareness’ and ‘Kampsång (Instrumental)’. These tracks have not, up-to-now, been heard by anyone apart from Shane Meadows himself.

‘The Gallows Pole: Original Score’ album is ltd to only 3,000 copies worldwide – the package comes as a colour vinyl LP + 7” and is housed in a special gatefold sleeve.

Tracklist:

LP:
01. Mind is Like the Sky
02. Field Raga
03. Jazzman
04. The Gate Is Open (The Temple Lies Within)
05. Vallåt
06. Goat Witch

7":
07. Timeless Awareness
08. Kampsång (Instrumental)



13 Feb 2024

Alison Cotton reveals new single – 'Crépuscule'

Alison Cotton's new album 'Engelchen' is released on 15 March. It is an album inspired by the story of Ida and Louise Cook, two remarkable women who helped arrange the paths of refugees out of danger in 1930s Nazi-occupied Europe.

Watch the John O'Carroll made video for the second single to be released from 'Engelchen' – the absorbing 'Crépuscule' above

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'Englechen' is released on 15 March – preorder now on 'Swirl vinyl' via the Bandcamp link below, or on clear vinyl from your local record shop:

Bandcamp

The great 'Feeding Tube Records' are releasing the album in North America.

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The secretive heroics of Ida and Louise almost beggar belief, and when Alison Cotton first discovered their story, she couldn’t understand why it wasn’t more widely known. Furthermore, she was inspired by their courage, fortitude and derring-do to compose Engelchen, a live musical tribute to the duo’s lives and work, which is now a full-length release on Rocket Recordings.

Throughout, this story is relayed by Alison, whether acapella or by means of richly emotive string arrangements, with a deftness of touch, sensitivity and intensity that matches the feverish nature of the experiences and the unforgiving environs in which they took place. Engelchen is a transporting work whose spirit is situated in a very specific time and place,

Nonetheless, the story of Ida and Louise Cook is more than merely an inspirational tribute to two mavericks who beat the odds in an unforgettable feat of altruism. It’s a celebration of the human spirit, one that reflects a universality in its narrative which transcends the boundaries of history and impacts very urgently on our daily lives. Whatever attempts may be made to tell this story, it’s hard to imagine one that resonates deeper than Engelchen.

See Alison live at these following dates:

23 March / Gregynog Hall / Newtown 
28 March / Glad Cafe / Glasgow
29 March / The Lubber Fiend / Newcastle
30 March / Bishop's House / Sheffield
31 March / Rise / York
05 April / St Pancras Old Church / London
25-27 July / DK / Sønderho / Fanø Free Folk Festival



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6 Feb 2024

Thee Alcoholics reveal second single from forthcoming album – 'Feedback'

Thee Alcoholics – the London 5 piece formed by ex Hey Colossus member Rhys Llewellyn have revealed 'It's So Easy' the second single from their debut Rocket album 'Feedback'.  

Clocking in under 2minutes, 'It's So Easy' is Thee Alcoholics at their most upbeat and poppy but still frighteningly aggressive, check out the video above:

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'Feedback' is released on 23 February – but you can preorder now on Ltd Edition Yellow Vinyl:

Bandcamp

-

Cranky and cantankerous yet lysergically aligned, 'Feedback' is mesmeric rock with swagger, warped into sci-fi shapes by the spirit and sonics of bass and soundsystem culture. The psychedelic shapes here are redolent of the ur-klang of The Fall and the monolithic lurch of The Heads, the motorik malevolence less an uplifting trip to the heavens than a drill down to the earth’s core.

Discernible in these jackhammer beats, grimly murmured vocals and delirious dirges to certain heads may be the trash futurism of Chrome, the decomposed stomp of unsung legends Earl Brutus and the electro-punk attack of Six Finger Satellite, yet all of the above co-ordinates are waylaid effortlessly by a balls-out intensity and a fearsome intent on aural oblivion at all costs.

'Feedback' may be elemental and primal, yet this is no psych comfort-blanket nor retro-fetishism, rather a repetition-driven journey headlong into intimidating territory unknown. Get on board, and strap yourselves in for a bumpy ride.

Get intoxicated on Thee Alcoholics live experience at one of these shows:

09 Feb / Rennes / Le Marquis De Sade
10 Feb / Nantes / Quaim
16 Feb / Halifax / Grunston Unity
21 Feb / Manchester / The Peer Hat
22 Feb / Derby / Dubrek Studios
23 Feb / Newcastle / The Lubber Fiend
24 Feb / Nottingham / Chameleon
29 Feb / Bristol / The Crown
01 Mar / London / Moor Vaults Brewery



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1 Feb 2024

The Utopia Strong announce 'The BBC Sessions'

To tide you over before a new studio The Utopia Strong album is released, we are happy to reveal the band are unleashing 'The BBC Sessions' album on Ltd edition LP and CD on 22 March. 

'The BBC Sessions' were originally recorded live at Maida Vale for a Marc Riley session on BBC 6 Music in September 2022, the five tracks capture The Utopia Strong stretching themselves and continuing to develop their aural explorations.

Watch the John O'Carroll made video for the track 'Lamp Of Glory' above.

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You can preorder The Utopia Strong's 'The BBC Sessions' on Ltd Edition Black vinyl and CD from 8am GMT tomorrow (2nd Feb) to coincide with the first Bandcamp Friday of the year:

Preorder album

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The band approached this session differently, as usually pieces are improvised and developed live over a longer period of time. “When we hit a point where all three of us really had something going, we would continue while the proverbial tape was rolling,” says Kavus Torabi, “So, the shorter pieces are the result of about ten or fifteen minutes playing that you wouldn’t have heard.”

The history of BBC Maida Vale Sessions is familiar to The Utopia Strong. As musicians, and lifelong music fans, the legacy - the importance - of such recordings is not lost on them. Space and place influence creativity, as is the case here, and the sleeve is a loving homage to those classic BBC releases, affectionately nodding to Strange Fruit Peel Sessions from days of yore.

So put on the - classic, black - vinyl, sit back and go through all the other bands listed on the sleeve that have also recorded BBC Sessions. You will surely be familiar with them, if you are music aficionados like the band.



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29 Jan 2024

Gnoomes featured in The Guardian + announce tour


The Guardian has published this piece about Russian artists living in ecile in Europe due to the war, and in the piece they interview Gnoomes.

Read here: The Guardian

The band have also announced some European shows:

16 Feb / Trieste - Hangar Teatri
06 Mar / Ljubljana - Kino Šiška (with @lucidvox)
30 Mar / Northampton - The Black Prince
31 Mar / Newcastle - Cumberland Arms
04 Apr / Norwich - Voodoo Daddy’s
06 Apr / Sheffield - Delicious Clam
11 Apr / Leeds - Wharf Chambers
17 Apr / London - Strongroom Bar
17 May / Berlin – Loge

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