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Created in Portsmouth Open Studios Trail 2014

The 2nd Created in Portsmouth Open Studios Trail will take place 17th – 19th October. The trail showcases the diverse range of creative work made by artists and makers in Portsmouth. This takes place at various location around Portsmouth and you can download a trail map on the website link below.

The artists taking part this year are Magpie Glass, Mel Brudrit & Lesley George, Sarah Walbrin & Jane Withey, Pam Lake, Shake Your Glass & Dancingpot, Tango Tea, Lousie Kydd, Colin Merrin & The Southsea Workbench, The Copper Hare, Prints Ink & Pam Johns, Sue Meridith Illustration & Katherine Webber Jewellery, Island Pictures and Little Duck Forge, Somerville Stone & Dan Wendes.

There is a preview exhibition on Thursday October 16th 7.30-9.30pm at The Stone and Iron Show Garden, Eastney Beam Engine House, 199 Henderson Road, Portsmouth PO4 9JF. The exhibition will also be on display during Friday 17th – Sunday 19th at The King’s Theatre Shop, 24 Albert Road, PO5 2QL.

For further details and to view a map of all the locations please visit the website at http://createdinportsmouth.co.uk/

Work below by Prints Ink, Colin Merrin and Katherine Webber Jewellery.

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5th Annual Strong Island Home Brew Competition

Can you believe it, we’re heading into our fifth year of competition.  It’s that time of year when you get the Autumn feeling setting in and you know it’s time to dust off the hydrometer and make a trip down to Wilko’s (or browse any other reputable home brew suppliers) to stock up on brewing kit.

Last year saw the greatest turn out by far in the history of the competition and with this being a landmark 5th year, we’re hoping to see even more top brews entered.  Last year’s winner, Malaccan Pirate, was a storming success selling well in many Portsmouth pubs and it was also one of the first beers to sell out at the Portsmouth Beer Festival back in May.

My hops are harvested and i’m ready to get cracking.  We have yet to confirm a date for the judging evening but we will aim to announce a set date for February 2015 very soon so be sure to keep an eye out.

In the mean time happy brewing!

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PubHack #3 on the 7th October

PubHack is a 10 hour hackathon which returns on the 7th October at the Brewhouse and Kitchen in Portsmouth. Created by local web designers Jo Eyre and Lilian Tula, the 3rd event happening on 7th has doubled in size since the inaugural event back in September 2013.

“The idea came about at our local networking group Portsmouth Freelancers Meet. We thought it’d be a really fun to get local creatives and techies together in a pub and see what could be made in a day. It’s based around the notion that we come up with our best ideas at the pub.” Jo Eyre (Organiser)

This year the event has really grown, with over 50 developers and designers coming from all over the South Coast to compete for awards and prizes worth over £4,000. The event has also gained major support through sponsorship from huge international businesses such as Github, FreeAgent and GoSquared as well as local businesses such as CatN Hosting. PubHack also has some amazing judges including author Jon Burkhart, Andrew Nesbitt (GitHub), Simon Tabor (Lead developer of GoSquared) and Rich Boakes (University of Portsmouth).

At PubHack the teams are given a theme at the beginning of the day and have 10 hours to make anything they like – a website, a game, an app…one team even produced a film. The theme for the first event was Post Apocalypse, some of the highlights included a game built in Unity (Rise of the Nerds) where you could fight zombies inside a 3D creation of the Brewhouse and Kitchen. There was also had a game called Apocolhipster – where you use your iPhone to control your hipster and fight hipster zombies.

The second event had the theme First World Problems. Teams made some amazing projects including a Magic 8-Ball style app where you can get answers to your first world problems, and an interactive game ‘Jo’s Happy Super Fun Time Sofa Catchy Game’ where you can catch falling objects including a laptop, cats and gin bottles (which puts you into drunk mode!). Another highlight was a team of 3 who produced ‘Flappy Bird Fitness’, where they had re-created the Flappy Bird game but using your iPhone accelerometer to flap and move the bird.

“I’m really excited to see what the teams will come up with this year. We have a lot of big agencies from across the South Coast competing as well as local freelancers, contractors and graduates from University of Portsmouth. If the last event is anything to go by the competition is going to be fierce!”

Ticket sales for PubHack are now closed but anyone is welcome to join teams at the Brewhouse & Kitchen from 6:30pm to see what has been made in those 10 hours.

For more information or to see the previous entries, please visit www.pubhack.co.uk or follow PubHack on Twitter @pub_hack

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Strong Island Recordings At Southsea Fest Preview Part Ten – Blessa

Tomorrow one of the finest days in the calender for new music being Southsea Fest arrives and we are very stoked to say the least. For part ten of our Southsea Fest preview is one of my favourite new bands today. Delving between blissful, ethereal dreampop, shoegaze and post punk is our splendid headliners Blessa who shall be taking you into a state of euphoric bliss at Southsea Fest. Combining stunning whirling guitars with soothing, reverb coated enchanting vocals the sonic journey of Blessa is utterly mesmerising.

I managed to catch Blessa at a very crowded Komedia in Brighton at The Great Escape and they blew me away.Having dropped their incredibly strong four track ‘Love Is An Evol EP’ recorded by man of the moment MJ of Hookworms and also getting noticeable praise from the likes of NME and The Guardian (for very good reason I should add) you would be most foolish to miss out on what is going to be a very rare occurrence of seeing Blessa in a setting such as Bar Fifty-Six.

You most certainly should witness Blessa in the flesh at time of 22.00PM at Bar Fifty-Six at Southsea Fest. You can find the Facebook event here and also be sure to check out our stage sponsors The Park Studio.

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Strong Island Recordings At Southsea Fest Preview Part Nine – Looks

Running an electronic music label also Looks are a band I’m very excited about seeing at Southsea Fest. Displaying the more eclectic nature to our stage,Looks deliver synth enthused, danceable indie pop. It’s like feasting on early Foals along with a sprinkle of Yeasayer, Chvrches, Friendly Fires and Late Of The Pier. Gut punching synths, huge hooks and hefty basslines, debut track ‘Everest‘ on part blog, part label Killing Moon Records is an absolute gem displaying the trio’s evident talent in 5 plus minutes. It’s also screaming and I mean SCREAMING out for a potential remix. Looks are destined for much larger venues I’m sure of. You could well be looking at the next big thing. You can catch the ever splendid Looks at 21.05m at Bar Fifty-Six.

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Strong Island Recordings At Southsea Fest Preview Part Seven – Theo Verney

Theo Verney  first came to our attention from his debut EP the T.V EP released on the marvellous Italian Beach Babes label last year. Not long after we then co- hosted what was to be Theo’s first show outside of London and Brighton last August in Southsea at The One Eyed Dog.  Strong influences of Sabbath & Ty Segall and intertwining between garage rock, doom laden psychedelia, grunge tinted pop and stoner rock, Theo Verney is a sonic assault of fuzzy sludge filled riffs coated in gruff vocals and immense hooks. Already rapidly rising to prominence as one of the finest new acts in the country with an already shimmering career with releases on the likes of Hate Hate Hate Records (The Wytches & Fat White Family) & Italian Beach Babes as well as support stints with the likes of party king Andrew W.K, Parquet Courts & Yuck, Theo Verney’s stock looks set to continue to ascend at a rapid pace so do seize the opportunity to see Theo Verney playing in intimate venues such as Bar Fifty Six whilst you still can. Theo Verney plays Southsea Fest at Bar Fifty-Six at 19.15pm so head down early or there’s a good chance you may miss out, and you really don’t want to, trust us. You can find the Facebook event here and also be sure to check out our stage sponsors The Park Studio.


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Strong Island Recordings At Southsea Fest Preview Part Six – FURS

First up over at Strong Island Recordings we’re wishing ourselves a very self indulgent happy birthday as it is two years as of today that we launched at Southsea Fest in Bar Fifty-Six. A rather fantastic birthday present is knowing that these guys are going to be playing our party come Saturday at Southsea Fest.

So part six of our continuous Southsea Fest previews is of the incredible psychedelic, day-dream like pop outfit FURS who take you into their charm ridden, sun drenched blissful sound all coated in gorgeous whirling guitars. Their latest single ‘An Eye On The Viscous’ premiered on The Line Of Best Fit on Friday which you can listen to the amazing single taken from their debut album set to drop on the 3rd November right here. The Line of Best Fit described their latest gem as “a rare mix of melancholy and brightness. Like the first chilly day in September, it is subtle, yet sudden, familiar, yet unexpected.” Couldn’t have put it better myself.

Previously released tracks such as ‘Just Kids’ and ‘Going Nowhere’ show the immense potential with infectious hooks and textured guitars pouring through whilst ‘Striptease’ is reminiscent of psychedelia and surf rock akin to the likes of Allah- Las and The Growlers that sounds like it could be straight out of seminal Californian label Burger Records. We can’t wait for FURS to touch down into Southsea and take us into their enchanting realm.

Catch FURS at Bar Fifty Six at 18.20pm. Check the Facebook event here and do check out our splendid sponsors too, The Park Studio.

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Strong Island Recordings At Southsea Fest Preview Part Four – Eighteen Nightmares At The Lux

Now here’s a band who epitomise the darkness, chaos and fun, party ethos of ‘Drunken Sailor Presents’. London’s Eighteen Nightmares At The Lux or ENATL for short, cross between frenetic psychobilly, garage punk and surf rock. Topped with Gothic vocals, they remind us of a mixture of The Cramps, Eighties Matchbox B-line Disaster, The Wytches and our own Arrows of Love.Head down to our stage to see Eighteen Nightmares At The Lux at Bar Fifty-Six at 16.25pm. You can find the Facebook event here and also be sure to check out our stage sponsors The Park Studio.

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Strong Island Recordings At Southsea Fest Preview Part Three – Wyldest

Creating ever gorgeous floating melodies, topped with enchanting vocals and coated in gentle, throbbing bass is the ambient, ethereal dream-pop trio Wyldest (formerly Wildest Dreams). Influences taken from the likes of My Bloody Valentine to Warpaint, it’s impossible not to fall in love and be addicted to the sounds of Wyldest.

NME put it perfectly when describing the now trio “It’s like being tickled in the ears by pixies”. Having main-staged Green Man Festival as well as taking over the blogosphere, Wyldest have quickly become one of the most sought after new acts around today. 

Wyldest are certainly one’s to put into your diary to check out. They play at 15.20pm at Bar Fifty-Six so head down for a tidal wave of total hazed out bliss. You can find the Facebook event  and also be sure to check out our stage sponsors The Park Studio.

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Strong Island Recordings At Southsea Fest Preview Part Two – Eloise Keating

Part two of Strong Island Recordings Presents ‘Drunken Sailor’ highlights the more eclectic nature of our Southsea Fest stage with the immensely talented Eloise Keating making her Southsea Fest debut. Smouldering with infectious, melting vocals, singer-songwriter-producer Eloise Keating creates gorgeous, electronic dream like pop with influences ranging from Lana Del Ray, James Blake to fellow Hampshire starlet Laurel. Having already gained support from the likes of Rob Da Bank as well as much coverage on the blogosphere, there’s no doubting Eloise’s uncapped potential evident in the spine tingly brilliant self written and produced ‘Be My Ghost’.

Having played to a very hefty crowd at Victorious Festival enchanting the crowd with her phenomenal vocal ability, with the right direction Eloise will certainly be a talent playing much larger venues in the future and shall be a name on many folks lips. You can catch Eloise at 14.25pm at our stage at Southsea Fest in Bar Fifty-Six.

You can find the Facebook event here and also be sure to check out our stage sponsors The Park Studio.

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Portsmouth at Night

Claire Sambrook from the http://www.flickr.com/groups/portsmouth_creative_movement/ sent me a link to a Flickr group called Portsmouth at Night, and let me say this, their photos are amazing. Lots of playing with lights, angles and exposures make for some fantastic photography.

Check out all the PAN photography on their Flickr.

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Strong Island Easter Bike Ride Video II

Sharpie just sent me over his edit from the Bike Ride last April 4th. He attached one of those fancy Flip Cameras onto his handlebars and he was away. Really cool to be able to see the ride from different perspectives. Cheers buddy.

Amazing Vintage Naval Posters

I found these truly amazing posters on one of my many Flickr travels. All circa 1930s and all fantastic. Click the images for the direct links to Flickr.












Old Southsea Skate Photos

Check the Skate Library for the first of a growing list of old Southsea photos including this one of Lance Mountain grinding the Law Courts back in 1988 (photo by Tim Leighton-Boyce).

By The Castle

Apologies for a little self-linkage, but I’ve added some photos from a July day down by the castle on Forever Circling (a photography, etc blog I update daily).

It’s sunny today too, roll on spring and summer.

Around the Castle

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