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In Photos: Record Store Day & The Castle Rd Easter Fete

Last Friday and Saturday saw the closure of Castle Rd and the return of its’ now familiar Fete, bringing over twenty of the cities’ finest independent traders together in celebration of  the much loved road. Coinciding with Pie & Vinyl’s Record Store Day celebrations, the two days featured live music performances from both national and local level musicians namely Young Knives, Emily Barker, The Boy I Used To Be, Matt Jarvis, Common Tongues, Fugitive Orchestra and Billy Vincent spread across two stages.

Sweetie Pie & Ooh la Lapin joint stall.

Young Knives on the Clocktower stage.

Rolling off the success of the Christmas Fair, shop fronts and restaurants spilled out onto the street providing everything from food and drinks to handmade items and vintage clothes – even the Bike Doctor was on hand for free cycle maintenance and advice. Recent additions to the road SHOP and 101 Reykjavik showed out in force with SHOP almost doubling its footprint out into the street and Reykjavik putting on a stage at the Common end of the road, alongside supplying a plentiful flow of their Icelandic white ale. If you’re a trader or maker looking to sell at the next fete, keep an eye on the Castle Rd website and register your interest soon as space is most definitely limited.

Thomas Dartnell of Young Knives keeping it weird.

Queue as of 8am on Record Store Day.

Pie & Vinyl saw more than 800 people through their door on Record Store Day with a handful of dedicated fans going as far as camping out from 5pm the previous evening to secure a spot at the front of the line. Free tea and coffee was kindly on hand for the first 100 attendees, although this number had been already far exceeded by the time we joined the queue at 7:30am. The hour and a half we spent in line passed quickly, albeit slightly chilly, helped along by the constant friendly conversations invariably started with, “So what are you hoping to get?”. Over 200 carefully curated records awaited the throngs of music lovers ranging from brand new releases to re-pressings of classic albums, many being limited Record Store Day editions. Pies weren’t saved from the celebrations either with pastry-based homages to Sub Pop and Pias served up with merch from their respective labels. Congratulations to the team at Pie & Vinyl for such a successful RSD event and thank you to everyone who turned out for supporting your local record store!

Hot beverage deliveries.

The Pie & Vinyl team post-RSD.

Emily Barker on Saturday afternoon.

 

The Portsmouth Guest Guide 2014

A NEW guest guide is promising to reveal the creative heart of Portsmouth to visitors staying at hotels in the city. The brainchild of Hampshire based ‘Marketing Collective‘, the Guest Guide is in its second year and the talented team are working hard pulling together content as we speak.

This year’s cover (following in the footstep’s of popular Portsmouth based artist Dave Thompson) will be the prolifically talented and good old local lad My Dog Sighs. Editor Jo Andrews, explained: “We are great admirers of My Dog’s work and when we were deciding who to feature on the cover, it didn’t take us long to make up our minds.”

Other features include an exploration of Portsmouth’s part in the Sherlock mania currently gripping the world and a Little Black Book feature, where a well-known local face recommends the best places to go for a romantic meal or the best live music. “We want to make the Guest Guide a really good read – packed with interesting information about Portsmouth that you just can’t find in the usual tourist leaflets. Last year Mark from Like a Teatray in the Sky did our Little Black Book feature for us – and had people coming into his cafe clasping copies of the guide.

Our aim is to encourage people to go beyond the heritage and really enjoy what Southsea has to offer in terms of great independent shops and fab bars and restaurants that leave a lasting impression.”

And the good news is it’s not too late for you to feature in this year’s Portsmouth Guest Guide. Jo is keen to speak to businesses who would like to advertise – and she is happy to discuss feature ideas too. If you would like to feature in the 2014 Guest Guide, contact Jo Andrews at jo@themarketing-collective.com or call 0759110720.

PGG13_COVER

Pie & Vinyl – Record Store Day 2014

For Vinyl lovers Record Store Day is more exciting them Christmas, New Years and Valentines put together. Pie & Vinyl haven’t disappointed with their plans for this years event on Saturday 19th April.

There will be a week of celebrations in the run up to Record Store Day itself, starting with a live show at the Square Tower in Old Portsmouth from Oliver Wilde and the newest addition to the Pie & Vinyl Records team, The Boy I Used To Be. You can find out more about this event HERE.

Then on Wednesday 16th April, Pie & Vinyl will be transformed into Pie & Film for the night. They will be showing the award winning record shop documentary Last Shop Standing. Following the film, there will be a talk and Q&A session from Graham Jones, the author and man behind the special docu-film. To find out how you can get hold of a ticket click HERE.

The fun continues on Thursday 17th April at 6:30pm when the team welcome Smoke Fairies playing live in store. They will be showing off their newest self titled album which is also released that week. Details on how you can get involved will soon be announced on the Pie & Vinyl website/social media.

On Friday 18th April the whole road is joining forces to celebrate the Castle Road Fete from 11am to 3pm. The Castle Road Fete will be celebrating one of Southsea’s finest locations and all that it has to offer. Stalls and market traders will be out in force along the road, selling their unique and wonderful gifts. Bands will be playing throughout the day, perforers include Brighton based Common Tongues, plus more acts for TBA. If you would like to be involved and have a stall then email crata@live.co.uk or call 07414 715157.

Then finally Record Store Day itself on Saturday 19th April. As always there will be lots of limited edition highly sought after items. The team are unable to reserve any item, take direct orders or cheeky bribes. We would recommend getting down there early to avoid disappointment as there will no doubt be a queue of customers waiting for the store to open at 11am. For a list of the limited edition releases check out the Pie & Vinyl website HERE. You can find out more about what Record Store Day is and it’s rules HERE.

There will be musical entertainment courtesy of my long lost sister Emily Barker & The Red Clay Halo. More artists to be announced soon. Lets not forget throughout these events you can treat yourself to a tasty pie.

Wow, so this is going to be an action packed week and I for one cannot wait!

Pie & Vinyl Presents...Oliver Wilde and The Boy I Use To Be @ The Square Tower

Pie & Vinyl Record Store Day 2014

Victorious Festival 2014

In January the Victorious Festival team announced that the festival will be moving to Southsea Seafront. The team appear to have planned a bigger and better event building upon the success of previous years.

Last week saw the second wave of artists confirmed to perform live. The line up already consisted of awesome headliners Dizzie Rascal, Seasick Steve but they have now been joined by Razorlight, British Sea Power, Slow Club, Foy Vance, Mark Morriss of The Bluetones and The Bog Rolling Stones. There will be DJ sets from Alt J, Terry Hall of the Specials, 2manyDJs and COR. Not to forget some of the best local talent such as Matt Jarvis, Eloise Keating and our favourites the Southsea Alternative Choir are also performing.

Personally I’m really excited about the Sunday line up, I’ve been a huge fan of Seasick Steve for years and I even went to Bestival dressed as him for the Under the Sea fancy dress theme. Sunday also see’s British Sea Power performing, they have been regular visitors to the Wedgewood Rooms during their tours in the past, most recently in April 2013. They are easily one of the best live acts you could ever have the pleasure of seeing. The Saturday headliner Dizzie Rascal isn’t too shabby. I caught him at Bestival in 2010 and I can promise you, he knows how to put on a show and get you dancing!

There will be more artists announced closer to the time. You can find out first by following Victorious on Facebook and Twitter @VictoriousFest, or by signing up to the mailing list HERE.

The event is more than just a music festival, there will be lots going on in the Kids Arena as well a Real Ale Festival featuring many local breweries. For the weekend local seafront attractions will be FREE, these include Southsea Castle, Blue Reef Aquarium, D-Day Museum and Southsea Skate Park. If you would like to be involved in the boutique market then drop the team an email on traders@victoriousfestival.co.uk.

The festival will be held on Saturday 23rd and Sunday 24th August. There are limited early bird tickets available but hurry as they are only available at the reduced price for the next ten days! Adult Day tickets are currently available for £15 per day and will be £20 after. You can pick one up via the website HERE, or directly at Little Johnny Russells or either of the Belle Isle restaurants. Kids tickets will cost £6 but those under the age of five can enter the festival for free.

Over the next five months we will try and keep you up to date on announcements and preview the performers and attractions that you can look forward to.

Victorious Festival 2014

Community Fusion – Volunteer Opportunities

Community Fusion are a local charity which have been doing great work within Portsmouth. They have opened up a Community Shop in the Cascades, Commercial Road. The shop is like no other charity shop I’ve seen before, the vast majority of the shop was put together using recycled materials for the shop fixtures.

Items available in the shop are sold for the artist and takes a percentages to help with charity costs. Those involved include locals such as Stu Linfield, Pie & Vinyl, Polly n Ogg, Untold Story and Sweet Cheeks. Many items have also been crafted by volunteers within the shop it’s self.

Find out more about the shop from a previous Strong Island feature from back in January HERE.

Jenna and the Community Fusion team are looking for enthusiastic volunteers to get stuck into retail duties as well as arts/crafts/books and more in the shop. The shifts will be between 9:30am-5pm. This role is ideal for someone who has some spare time and looking to give back to the community or for teenagers who are looking to improve their CV, to learn and gain skills which are required.

There are also story time reader opportunities available. If you have a passion for literature and enjoy entertaining children they need you! They have twenty minute slots of story telling.

If you can help then please also get in contact with Jenna on jenna@community-fusion.org, by Twitter @CommunityFusion or via the shops own Facebook Page HERE.

Community Fusion Logo

Community Fusion Shop

Community Fusion Shop

Community Fusion Shop

Spring In To Action Fundraiser This Thursday

Thursday evening at The WedgeWood Rooms sees ‘Spring Into Action’ – A Variety Fundraiser for ‘Pancreatic Cancer Action’ in memory of 24 year old Kerry Harvey, an ex-Portsmouth Uni Student who also worked at The Bridge Tavern, Old Portsmouth. Kerry was diagnosed at the young age of 23 years old, and after only 8 months of suffering from the disease, she lost her battle, aged just 24. Kerry, despite being so unwell, fought tirelessly to campaign for more awareness, earlier diagnosis & better funding for the cancer.

The organisers behind Spring in to Action could not help but be inspired by Kerry’s bravery and contacted her straight away to ask if she would allow them to put on a benefit concert, dedicated to her. Kerry herself chose the charity that all the proceeds will go to, and she knew or liked most of the acts that will perform.

The acts include Portsmouth’s favourite 1940′s trio The Three Belles, The Frank & Dean Show, Gloria Miller as Supremely Diana Ross, Jerry Williams, Burlesque from Scarlett Seductrice & Vanessa VaVoom, Samba Reggae Drummers – Batala Portsmouth, Magician Stephen Simmons & dance from ‘Swing4All’ Lindy Hoppers & N’Rapture Street Dance. All performers are giving up their time for nothing, so all proceeds are able to go straight to the ‘Pancreatic Cancer Action’ charity. There will also be a raffle on the night raising money, with prizes from many local individuals and businesses.

Tickets are available from The Wedgewood Rooms & The King Street Tavern, Southsea.

Spring In To Action Fundraiser

Loch to Loch, Cycling from Portsmouth to Cairndow in Scotland

Locals Michael McDonald & girlfriend Jo are setting off soon for an epic 550 mile long bike ride from Lock Fyne restaurant in Gunwharf all the way to Cairndow in Scotland, the location of Lock Fyne itself. The ride begins on the 31st of March with the route winding it’s way north stopping off at different Loch Fyne restaurants at different towns on the way.

The ride itself is to raise money for Macmillan Cancer Support charity, a vital charity that provides invaluable support to people newly diagnosed or undergoing treatment for cancer and their family too. Money is being raised in two ways, the first is a raffle with prizes donated by local businesses, tickets are £5 and it all goes to the charity. The second way to help support this ride is by donating direct to the Loch to Loch Just Giving page.

You can find out more about the ride and also keep up to date with progress once it begins at:

lochtoloch.wordpress.com

Loch to Loch (1)

Loch to Loch (2)

Tricorn Controversy in Concrete Exhibition at the Portsmouth City Museum

Tricorn: Controversy in Concrete is a brand new exhibition commemorating 10 years since the demolition of this distinct and controversial building that between 1966 and 2004 was a fundamental part of the Portsmouth skyline. The exhibition at Portsmouth City Museum goes far beyond documenting the building from an architectural perspective, although for the first time many, many original drawings, plans and photographs are on display from the building’s architects, much of it for the first time ever. Where this exhibition explores beyond the groundbreaking and (for many) iconic Brutalist architectural design is documenting how it was experienced and used by the people of Portsmouth. The exhibition opened on the 15th and formally had its opening celebration to a capacity crowd on Saturday 22nd.

The exhibition on the ground floor of the museum is loosely arranged in to two areas, with the first section detailing the origins of the building from concept to design and build. As you enter this space the striking architectural plans on the wall are what first catch the eye. The lines and form of the concrete structure can almost take you back in time to the exciting and economically optimistic early 1960s, with the original and then cutting edge design still feeling strangely fresh even now. This is reinforced with the many original pamphlets, magazines and books that show the enthusiasm the project launched with. This part of the exhibition also establishes where the Tricorn sat within the Brutalist movement and also with some other buildings in the city such as Portsdown Park and Portsmouth Central Library, both of which are in the exhibition in the form of architect sketches and models.

The second section focuses on how the people of Portsmouth experienced the structure over the years it stood in the city centre. Part of this section is an incredible collection of posters and artwork from the nightclub but there is also related music, photos and even period clothing giving a sense of how the building was, for a time, a hub for the community. This section also looks at how the building was a creative inspiration for many, including artwork, skateboard decks and in particular, photography. It is in this section the Strong Island community photo panel is located, with over 100 photos capturing the structure in artistic angles and light. This area is also home to some striking work by Jon King and James Earle, both of who explored the building with their cameras throughout it’s demolition. Both areas also contain oral history, with interviews, opinions and memories on the Tricorn from both architect and members of the public. Also in both areas of the exhibition are feedback walls, which welcome comments from people visiting the exhibition. Despite the exhibition only being open for a week these are already full with amazing contributions.

On Saturday 22nd the exhibition was formally opened including attendance by VIPs such as Owen Luder, one of the original architects, plus many people associated with the Tricorn from right back to it’s design and construction through to its final demolition. The event included speeches by Owen Luder, Celia Clark and Councillor Lee Hunt, possibly the most interesting was the story of the Tricorn told by Owen Luder himself. It was fascinating to see how for him the aspirations for the building were in many ways dashed due to an economic turndown happening with an extended delay in securing contracts with key business tenants. Of particular note were his thoughts on how the space itself has been used “54 years on it is back to how it was when I first saw it in 1960, a carpark”.

The exhibition runs through to the 29th June.

Tricorn Controversy in Concrete Exhibition at the Portsmouth City Museum (1)

Tricorn Controversy in Concrete Exhibition at the Portsmouth City Museum (2)

Tricorn Controversy in Concrete Exhibition at the Portsmouth City Museum (3)

Tricorn Controversy in Concrete Exhibition at the Portsmouth City Museum (4)

Tricorn Controversy in Concrete Exhibition at the Portsmouth City Museum (5)

Tricorn Controversy in Concrete Exhibition at the Portsmouth City Museum (6)

Tricorn Controversy in Concrete Exhibition at the Portsmouth City Museum (7)

Tricorn Controversy in Concrete Exhibition at the Portsmouth City Museum (8)

Tricorn Controversy in Concrete Exhibition at the Portsmouth City Museum (9)

Tricorn Controversy in Concrete Exhibition at the Portsmouth City Museum (11)

Tricorn Controversy in Concrete Exhibition at the Portsmouth City Museum (12)

Tricorn Controversy in Concrete Exhibition at the Portsmouth City Museum (13)

Tricorn Controversy in Concrete Exhibition at the Portsmouth City Museum (14)

Tricorn Controversy in Concrete Exhibition at the Portsmouth City Museum (15)

Tricorn Controversy in Concrete Exhibition at the Portsmouth City Museum (16)

Tricorn Controversy in Concrete Exhibition at the Portsmouth City Museum (17)

Tricorn Controversy in Concrete Exhibition at the Portsmouth City Museum (18)

Tricorn Controversy in Concrete Exhibition at the Portsmouth City Museum (19)

Far From Home Exhibition Opening Photos

The Far From Home project is a collaboration between Strong Island Media, Apple Seed and the University of Portsmouth where students from different creative courses produce work on the theme of being far from home for the first time and what the concept of home means to a person and their family. The students met and worked with residents of Greenwich Court, a Somerstown home for ex-service personnel and family members.

On Friday the 14th of this month the project exhibition opened at Space, the new gallery and exhibition space in the new Eldon Wing, with the student’s work on display on the brand new display walls. The exhibition also contains personal clothing and objects from the residents too, including incredible photos and even war diaries.

The photos below are from the opening of the exhibition, which will run until Wednesday this week. Today is an ‘In Conversation…’ event at the Eldon Wing between 14:30 to 15:30 where project participants discuss the project and take questions from the audience, the event is free and everyone who might be interested in projects that connect different communities is more than welcome.

A huge thank you to Southsea Gallery for their help with the printing and framing for the exhibition and another to the staff of UoP and Space and university students, who’s help was vital to getting the exhibition ready.

A book and short documentary about the project are in production now, more details on those soon. You can find out more about the project and see more photos at:

www.farfromhomeproject.co.uk

Far From Home Exhibition Opening (1)

Far From Home Exhibition Opening (2)

Far From Home Exhibition Opening (3)

Far From Home Exhibition Opening (4)

Far From Home Exhibition Opening (5)

Far From Home Exhibition Opening (6)

Far From Home Exhibition Opening (7)

Far From Home Exhibition Opening (8)

Far From Home Exhibition Opening (9)

Far From Home Exhibition Opening (10)

Far From Home Exhibition Opening (11)

Far From Home Exhibition Opening (12)

Far From Home Exhibition Opening (13)

Far From Home Exhibition Opening (14)

Far From Home Exhibition Opening (15)

Community Fusion’s 3rd Birthday Celebrations

Community Fusion Presents… is a evening of music, laughs, dancing, fun and it’s all in aid of celebrating Community Fusions third birthday. All proceeds are going to support Community Fusion and their future projects. If you are not already aware they are a youth volunteer service providing opportunities for 14-25 year olds in and around Portsmouth.

The awesome line up of music and bands is a good one, I recommend you take the time to check them out.

Battery Hens

MT

My favourite local band at the moment The Boy I Used To Be

Guide award winning Matt Jarvis

Doors 7pm-2am, From 11pm after the bands there will be music courtesy of the Hot Sauce DJs. Tickets are available for £5 and you can get your hands on them on the door on the night or before hand at the Wedgewood Rooms, Pie & Vinyl, the musicians or the Community Fusion Shop in Cascades.

Community Fusion Presents...

Features

Competition – Win Two Tickets To See Kassassin Street + Curxes + Juice

Friday 3rd May the Wedgewood Rooms will be hosting a great night of music featuring Kassassin Street, Curxes and Juice. The guys at Kassassin Street have been generous enough to donate a pair of tickets for you, the Strong Island readers.

All you have to do to win these tickets are to email your answer to the question below to stuart@strong-island.co.uk by midnight on Sunday 27th. The winner will be announced here on Monday 28th.

Q – The band are named after the road in Eastney, name one of the three roads which junction with it?

Find out more about the event on the Facebook HERE.

Kassassin Street + Curxes + Juice + Longlive DJs

Juice ‘Numbskull’ from Butchy Davy on Vimeo.

Strong Island Calendar Exhibition

Last November saw the launch of our 2014 Calendar at an Exhibition at the Wine Vaults. You can read an article from Becki Partridge about the event HERE.

We cannot take all of the credit for the exhibition, the content was all provided by you, the Strong Island readers. Not to forget the exhibition was made possible by the team at Southsea Gallery who printed and framed the photographs. If you see a photo that you like you can purchase it in Southsea Gallery located at 51 Albert Road.

The exhibition can be found in ‘snug’ on the far right hand side of the Wine Vaults.

If you would like to know how to get involved in next years calendar then click HERE to find out more information.

Phil Tickner Calendar Exhibition 1

Phil Tickner Calendar Exhibition

Photos are by the awesome Phil Tickner, be sure to give him a follow on Flickr and on Twitter @HoldYourColour.

Strong Island Calendar Exhibition

A Kind of Conjuration at the Cellars

You would think witch trails a thing of the distant past. However, during the second world war a woman was tried and convicted under the ancient Witchcraft Act.

A play about the trial was performed at The Cellars at Eastney last week. Local theatre companies New Apollo and Cop The Needle brought audiences A Kind of Conjuration. This hour-long theatre piece, directed by Steve Pitt, featured a group of five actors, and was based on the real-life trial of Scottish medium Helen Duncan in 1944, for events that took place in Portsmouth.

The intimacy of the venue worked well for the subject matter, and enabled the performers and audience to connect in a way that isn’t possible in larger venues. When the judge, played by Christopher Marlowe, addressed the jury during the court scene, he spoke to the audience as if they were the jury, making them feel involved in the action.

Angie Lily was fantastic in the court scene, nipping backstage to change elements of costume in-between each character, resulting in a highly entertaining whirlwind of at least five different characters (and accents) testifying in quick succession. Henry Oastler was on comedic top form for his appearance in the court scene, displaying subtle character traits such as a tuck of the chin, transforming him completely from his other role in the play as a newspaper journalist. James Kirby and Tim Lowe also gave entertaining performances.

Writers Stuart Olesker and John Stanton incorporated excerpts from the original court transcript, adding authenticity to this brilliant piece. A highly refreshing and thought provoking performance.

A Kind of Conjuration will next be performed at the Square Tower on 25th June as part of Portsmouth Festivities. (Doors open at 7pm, performance starts at 8pm). On this occasion the play will be preceded by a monologue from the late Harry Price, ghostbuster extraordinary. Tickets from 023 9282 6249 or 023 9273 6288 or online: www.thecellars.co.uk.

Reviews:

Ashley Harley in Portsmouth News:
“a little gem”
“hauntingly good”
“not to be missed”
“solid direction”

Heather James in Portsmouth News:
“I was riveted”
“very witty and entertaining”

David Richards of Remote Goat:
“a sellout”
“a joy to watch”
“superb performances”
“a very high degree of professionalism”
“a very effective mix of the serious and the comedic”
“another triumph and a thoroughly enjoyable evening”

The original flyer for the show at The Cellars

Strong Island Calendar 2015 #SIC2015

Our 2014 Calendar was a huge success, the quality of images and huge amount interest it received really took us by surprise. We managed to double the sales of the 2013 Calendar, meaning we raised just over £600 for the Feel Yourself Campaign and the Alzheimer’s Society. We received over a thousand submissions by email and by use of the Instagram hashtag #sic2014.

We are excited to announce that we are taking submissions for our 2015 calendar. If you’ve taken a photo that you’d like to submit then you can email your submission via calendar@strong-island.co.uk. If you’ve taken a photo on Instagram that you’d like to submit for consideration you just need add the hashtag #SIC2015. There are no limits to how many you submit, the only rule is that the image must be relevant to Portsmouth.

Along with Instagram this year we also recommend you check out the Faded App. I’ve had a play with this App and you can create images that surpass anything that Instagram can produce. I especially love the overlay function.

If you have been taking any photos during this extreme weather we would love for you to submit them!

You may be aware that unfortunately due to an error our end the original batch of calendars contained a couple of errors. To rectify this the problem with the calendar we re-printed all of the calendars and offered everyone who bought one a free replacement (with free P&P where required). We are confident that we have managed to replace the vast major because of the online ordering records, however if you bought one from Lou Lou’s, Southsea Gallery or the Victorian Market then we don’t have your details so we need you to contact us ASAP to arrange a replacement! Those unclaimed calendars by the end of the week are likely to be donated to the staff of the charities we are supporting

Strong Island Calendar 2015

Here are just a few of the submissions that we have already received that might give you some inspiration.

Charlie Thompson Fratton Park

Charlie Thompson 2
Both Charlie Thompson
Todd Lawton
Todd Lawton
Roberta Curxes
Roberta Fidora
Danny Miles
Danny Miles

Road To Blissfields 2014 by Sophie Perryer

It’s that time of year again, when Southsea’s finest traipse out on a Friday night to listen to some of our home-grown, burgeoning talent. This year was no exception, with the likes of Becky Jerams, Poppobowa, Sabre and the B of the Bang taking to the stage to fill our ears with a range of musical goodness.

The evening was held this year at the Cellars at Eastney, and certainly had a more relaxed atmosphere – Strong Island’s Stuart Barker was even spotted wandering around with a cup of tea at one point!

The relaxed atmosphere lent itself perfectly to Becky Jerams soulful, syrupy vocals, gliding effortlessly over lyrics and melodies alike. Becky has enjoyed considerable success over the last few years with her song writing: her track ‘La La Love’ was featured in a Mandy Moore movie, and she has written for the likes of Chesney Hawkes and Loz Bridge. These accomplishments certainly showed through in her music; her sound was very much grown up pop and polished, while still retaining a youthful, wishful quality in her lyrics. A great start to the evening.

Becky was followed by Popobawa, a Gosport based trio relatively new to the music scene – so much so that Road To Blissfields was their debut live show! To say the boys coped well would be an understatement; they delivered a strong set with some interesting melodic choices which made for a distinctive sound, and the combination of this with hazy vocals akin to Friendly Fires was very striking. The best part? You can download their EP for a ‘name your price’ on their SoundCloud page.

Also hailing from Gosport were SABRE – the fivesome delivered catchy synth beats and impressive vocals not dissimilar to the Maccabees or Bombay Bicycle Club, with a little Two Door Cinema Club thrown in for good measure. Their raucous sarcastic comedy appealed to the crowd, and the banter between the band members was enjoyable.

Last but certainly not least were the B Of The Bang. The contrast of the almost gravelly voice of the lead singer and the Roxanne on keyboard’s ethereal vocals lent an almost eerie sense. The band delivered well thought-out tracks which were both directional and abstract, and conveyed a sense of their musical versatility and talent. Without a doubt a well deserved victory.

Congratulations to the B Of The Bang“>B of the Bang on their slot at Blissfields, and thank you also to the other artists for once again showcasing to us the quality of our local talent! Thank you too to Bellyeyesmile, Joel Ransom, the Cellars at Eastney, Strong Island, and all those others who had a hand in organising a top evening.

By Sophie Perryer

*We will be giving away a pair of tickets to Blissfields over the next six weeks so be sure to keep an eye out.*

Becky Jerams
Becky Jerams

Becky Jerams
Popobawa
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SABRE
SABRE

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SABRE
B Of The Bang
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B Of The Bang
Bellyeyesmile
Bellyeyesmile

Bellyeyesmile
All photo’s by Daniel O’Neill

Victorious Festival 2014

In January the Victorious Festival team announced that the festival will be moving to Southsea Seafront. The team appear to have planned a bigger and better event building upon the success of previous years.

Last week saw the second wave of artists confirmed to perform live. The line up already consisted of awesome headliners Dizzie Rascal, Seasick Steve but they have now been joined by Razorlight, British Sea Power, Slow Club, Foy Vance, Mark Morriss of The Bluetones and The Bog Rolling Stones. There will be DJ sets from Alt J, Terry Hall of the Specials, 2manyDJs and COR. Not to forget some of the best local talent such as Matt Jarvis, Eloise Keating and our favourites the Southsea Alternative Choir are also performing.

Personally I’m really excited about the Sunday line up, I’ve been a huge fan of Seasick Steve for years and I even went to Bestival dressed as him for the Under the Sea fancy dress theme. Sunday also see’s British Sea Power performing, they have been regular visitors to the Wedgewood Rooms during their tours in the past, most recently in April 2013. They are easily one of the best live acts you could ever have the pleasure of seeing. The Saturday headliner Dizzie Rascal isn’t too shabby. I caught him at Bestival in 2010 and I can promise you, he knows how to put on a show and get you dancing!

There will be more artists announced closer to the time. You can find out first by following Victorious on Facebook and Twitter @VictoriousFest, or by signing up to the mailing list HERE.

The event is more than just a music festival, there will be lots going on in the Kids Arena as well a Real Ale Festival featuring many local breweries. For the weekend local seafront attractions will be FREE, these include Southsea Castle, Blue Reef Aquarium, D-Day Museum and Southsea Skate Park. If you would like to be involved in the boutique market then drop the team an email on traders@victoriousfestival.co.uk.

The festival will be held on Saturday 23rd and Sunday 24th August. There are limited early bird tickets available but hurry as they are only available at the reduced price for the next ten days! Adult Day tickets are currently available for £15 per day and will be £20 after. You can pick one up via the website HERE, or directly at Little Johnny Russells or either of the Belle Isle restaurants. Kids tickets will cost £6 but those under the age of five can enter the festival for free.

Over the next five months we will try and keep you up to date on announcements and preview the performers and attractions that you can look forward to.

Victorious Festival 2014