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Final Southsea Fest Line Up Including Pulled Apart By Horses, Ed Harcourt & DZ Deathrays

Southsea Fest have announced the latest and final line up to the already marvellous bill which already includes the likes of Laurel, Dinosaur Pile-Up, Mazes, Blessa, Menace Beach, Kagoule, Eliza & The Bear and many more including local favourites Rickyfitts and Kassassin Street. The one day, multi-venue urban festival spanning across the intimate setting of Albert Road has pulled absolutely no punches with its latest additions and it looks set to be the biggest and best Southsea Fest yet.

Headlining the Wedge is gnarly hardcore punk, Leeds exports, Pulled Apart by Horses regarded by many as one of the best live acts today with their twisted, amp melting, gut busting ferocious sets. Their last Southsea Fest outing, for those fortunate to catch them was regarded as stuff of legend and with them playing the Wedge this year you’re four times more likely to be able to get a glimpse of their carnage. Along with Pulled Apart By Horses, Brisbane duo DZ Deathrays head back to Southsea and will deliver a face-melting, riot like set of thrash ridden pop. Another huge coup for Southsea Fest and headlining the Kings Theatre is established singer-songwriter Ed Harcourt who shall be a perfect fit for the glorious, Edwardian setting. Also on the bill confirmed is Fat Cat Record’s Glaswegian duo Honeyblood who deliver, scuzzy, grunge tinged, indie pop. Bringing the doom psychedelia and stoner rock is GANG, the latest signings to Strong Island Recordings who are ready to inflict a sonic assault upon senses with ear pounding riffs and gnarling, wailing vocals. Heading back to Southsea Fest is the splendid Talons who create intense and epic instrumental, math-post hardcore rock coated in  magnificently building violin sections also coated in merciless riffs. There are numerous other additions as well as in which you can find below.

Tickets are just £18 for what represents an incredible value for money and can be purchased HERE.

Pulled Apart By Horses -Ed Harcourt – Famy – DZ Deathrays – Flyte - Fear of Men – Laurel – Curxes – Talons – Brontide - Blessa – Mazes – Castles – Eliza & The Bear 100 Ounces – Alpha Male Tea Party – Andy Oliveri – Bad Grammar - Battery Hens – Beautiful Boy – Big Fin – Big Sixes – Body Hound - Boy Jumps Ship – Brawlers – Break-Ups  - Dear Everyone - Deluxe Flamingos – Doe – Eighteen Nightmares at the Lux – Elephantantrum - Eloise Keating – Emperor Yes – Employed To Serve – Fairweather Band -FALLS – Fickle Friends – Flash Fires – Floella Grace – Fred Page - FURS – Gang – Goodtime Boys – Gossling – Happy Accidents – Happyness - Harker – Holy Kasper – Honeyblood – House of Thieves – Hunter And The Bear - Iced Out – Jesse Wylde & The Stallions – Jimmy Islip and the Ghosts w/ Sam Russo - Joythief – Kagoule – Kassassin Street – Layers – Life – Lillian Todd Jones - LOOKS – Love Park – Lu’Ami – Lucky One Dies First – Lyger - Martha – Matt Emery – Matt Jarvis – Meadowlark – Menace Beach - Michael A Grammar – Natasha North – Nothing But Thieves - Osca – Passport to Stockholm – Pawws – Pedro Donkey - Personal Best – Phoria – Pixel Fix – Popabawa – Prides – Pure Graft - Racing Glaciers – Raglans – Richie & The Remedy - RickyFitts – Rough Hands – SACHA – Saint Agnes - Sam Brothers –  Slaves – Spring King – Tangled Hair – Teef – The B of The Bang - The Boy I Used To Be – The Cadbury Sisters – The Cairos – The Lion & The Wolf -The Magic Gang – The Plastic Beats Band – The Prestige - The Proper Ornaments – The Ramona Flowers – The SLM - The Southsea Alternative Choir – ThisPlanet – Thought Forms - Tigercub – Tom Moody – Trampolene – Uncle Luc – Unknown Soldiers – Waylayers - We The Wild – Woahnows – Wildest Dreams

Southsea Fest 2014 Poster

Gland Rock At The Wedgewood Rooms in Support of The Feel Yourself Campaign 5th July Headlined by 90′s Legends The Telescopes

The glorious Gland Rock belts down into Southsea 5th July in support of the Feel Yourself Campaign. This new Portsmouth music festival takes place across one day in one venue at the Wedgewood Rooms & Edge of the Wedge featuring some the finest bands across the land. Headlined by Creation Records (responsible for the releases of the likes of My Bloody Valentine, The Jesus & the Mary Chain and Oasis) 90’s legends The Telescopes bringing their visceral realm of psychedelic, shoegaze and dreampop along with the likes of God Damn, a mind blowing twosome creating an atomic, thundering racket of noise which is totally perplexing as to how two men can create such a sound that almost defies the laws of plausibility. Along with Bo Ningen, they’re possibly the best live band at the moment and can be found heavily across the festival circuit. Possibly tomorrow headliners but if you feel any seismic activity in Portsmouth, it’s likely due to God Damn.

The line up also sees the weird and wonderful punks Claw Marks fresh from their Sexbeat release (Eagulls/White Lung) and UK tour with Fat White Family as well as scuzz pop duo Playlounge, punk quartet Human Hair, electronic two piece AK/DK, indie/post punk  and and Playlounge as well as some of the best locals in the area. Carefully curated, taking quality over quantity the line-up sees thrash duo Rickyfitts who have released on bothStrong Island Recordings and Pie & Vinyl, local cult legends The Demons recently re-releasing ‘Contact High’ getting high praise such as being touted a classic by Backseat Mafia as well as dreampop, shoegaze duo who also create luscious surf like riffs, Wildest Dreams, psych-doom outfit Unknown Soldiers, the bombastic, blitz pop duo Curxes, Eloise Keating who delivers haunting dream pop and colourful indie electro pop 4 piece Deluxe Flamingos.

There will also be a raffle on the day to help raise money for the Feel Yourself Campaign. The raffle prizes include:

- My Dog Sighs Painted Canvas framed by Southsea Gallery
- Victorious Tickets
- Southsea Fest Tickets
- £25 Art Is Hard Records Voucher and Surprise Test Pressing
- Unique Pompey Calendar and David James Painting by Official PFC Artist
- Strong Island Swag
- Pie and Vinyl Swag
- Artwork by amazing local artists (such as mynameisleila and m-one)
- plus much more…

You can listen to the playlist below and tickets can be purchased for merely £10 HERE or on the day, availability permitting.

Gland Rock Poster

Southsea Fest Announcements Of Local Acts Including Curxes, Kassassin Street, Rickyfitts, The Boy I Used To Be & More

On the 20th September one of the finest days in the British music calendar; Southsea Fest hits Portsmouth once again. With a line up already consisting of some of Britain’s best new acts including the likes of Mazes, Laurel, Blessa, Kagoule, Fear of Men, Dinosaur Pile Up and Slaves to name just a small handful, Southsea Fest have announced the local additions to the already tremendous line up.

For our Strong Island Recordings stage in which we return to the sweat pit that is upstairs of bar Fifty Six, we’re delighted to announce the latest additions to our stage: Fresh to the festival and from their NME Radar hype, we bring you Wildest Dreams who delve between enchanting dream-pop and also brooding, atmospheric shoegaze reminding us of a cross between Warpaint, Melody’s Echo Chamber and Cocteau Twins.  We have a more eclectic line up this year and making her debut at Southsea Fest is the immensely talented Eloise Keating who creates hauntingly beautiful electro, dream-pop with mesmerising vocals, one of the city’s best new talents for sure. We are also bringing back the fuzzy, ferocious, tinnitus inducing, sludge filled thrash duo Rickyfitts who shall be opening the Drunken Sailor’ stage, not just one of Portsmouth’s very best live bands but one of the country’s best new live bands, period.  All three will be joining the likes of Blessa, Kagoule, Furs and Kill Moon at Bar Fifty-Six.

Also playing Southsea Fest is extended label family duo The Boy I Used to Be who shall be playing for Pie & Vinyl and bringing their garage pop akin to King Tuff, Unknown Mortal Orchestra and Splashh. The festival also has some fresh blood with Gosport’s brilliant tropical psych pop trio Popobawa making their debut as well as western styled blues/psych, Southampton/London outfit Saint Agnes and ElEPHANTANTRUM taking you into a deep acid like realm of twisted, 60’s inspired psychedelia.

Other locals added to the bill are space rock, grunge Southsea regulars Battery Hens who will be sonically burning holes into eardrums, the bombastic, electro pop duo Curxes, bringing a unique hybrid of grunge, surf and jazz, Jesse Wyldes & The Stallions return to Southsea Fest, Pie & Vinyl’s The B Of the Bang return to Southsea after a summer of festival appearances, doom laden psychedelic outfit The Unknown Soldiers, the colourful indie electro pop, Deluxe Flamingos, the gnarly hardcore punk trio Lucky One Dies First, the dance-able, electro tinged, psych tinted locals Kassassin Street who combine elements of world music to their charming, indie pop  as well  as Matt Jarvis, Big Fin, Sacha, Southsea Alternative Choir, Joythief, Happy Accidents, The Plastic Beats Band and Tom Moody as well as of course the return of the phenomenal Laurel who was outstanding at the couple of sets I saw her at The Great Escape with her full band with one being a packed out Komedia.

Southsea Fest is guaranteed to be another cracker this year introducing you to tomorrow’s headliners in some of the most intimate settings. Tickets are incredibly great value for money ranging from £10 – £18 and can be found HERE. So tell your friends and family and head down to the small independent festival that supports the best in new music and fine local establishments. You can check out some of the latest additions to the line up below.

Southsea Fest Hampshire Acts

Gland Rock Festival 2014 in Aid of the Feel Yourself Campaign Feat. The Telescopes & More

GLAND ROCK returns for its second outing on July 5th for the one-day charity festival in aid of Feel Yourself Campaign – promoting cancer awareness for men and women. Situated at The Wedgewood Rooms and Edge of The Wedge in Southsea, Portsmouth, the event ran by Strong Island Recordings, Champagne Justice and Creation for Causes will have incredible live music alongside stalls brimming with an assortment of food, records, clothing and art. Entry is £10 and tickets can be purchased here.

The first Gland Rock, in November 2013, included the likes of Esben and The Witch, Wild Smiles, Traams, The Hundredth Anniversary, Bloodsport, Fever, Shudder Pulps and many more. This year Gland Rock 2014 is led by legendary British outfit The Telescopes formerly on one of the greatest record labels of all time Creation Records and remains as eclectic, electric and impressive, featuring a unique blend of lauded acts and exciting prospects on the ascent. The Telescopes have been hailed as “brilliant” with a “very real and crazy originality that carries fat tons of wallop” by The Wire. Steve Lamacq has championed the band since their inception and they have been described as “in another universe altogether… incredible” by NME. The Telescopes’ spiralling blend of psyche, shoegaze and visceral noise is like no other and Gland Rock is delighted to welcome them as our headline act for 2014.

Also on the line up are the likes of God Damn, AK/DK, Playlounge and Flamingods who have all fast become favourites of gig and festival goers across the country. Elsewhere, we have the bewilderingly exciting Omi Palone and Human Hair, two of the capital’s finest new bands.

On the home front, Southsea is gainfully represented by the bombastic Curxes, You’re Smiling Now But We’ll All Turn Into Demons, Is Bliss, Rickyfitts, Deluxe Flamingos & Eloise Keating.

Champagne Justice, Creation For Causes, and Strong Island Recordings are proud to bring you Gland Rock 2014 in aid of Feel Yourself Campaign! You can listen to the line up below of the acts playing Gland Rock and check the Facebook event HERE.

Gland Rock 2014

TONIGHT – Strong Island Recordings Presents Drunken Sailor 18th April At Edge Of The Wedge

On Friday 18th April Strong Island Recordings presents ‘Drunken Sailor’ at Edge of the Wedge and we bring you a handful of some of our favourite up and coming acts today plus Champagne Justice deejays all for a mere £4.00 entry.

Arrows of Love
London grunge/art punk outfit Arrows of Love whirl up an absolute riot during every one of their live sets. The 5 piece are a total adrenaline rush where the entire venue is the stage and the show is an interactive experience and one you never know what’s going to happen except from utter chaos and absolute brilliance. Kerrang labelled them as one of the most engaging new bands plus NME, Front, Fake DIY, Artrocker, John Kennedy of XFM,Fake DIY, Lauren Laverne and many many more have also shown their support for AOL and now they return to Portsmouth with their debut album set to be unleashed around the same time too on 1234 Records.

Rickyfitts
Rickyfitts as a band are still very much in their infancy, forming just a few months ago yet they could well be one of the best new live bands you will see today. The duo bring blistering, sludge filled thrash punk, heavy psych, grunge rock . Despite being the nicest guys you could meet, they play with much ferociousness & are absolute merciless to their instruments, brutally pummelling them into near mush. Check out ‘Slouching Toward Nirvana‘ we released on our ‘Treacherous Tides’ compilation.

The Hundredth Anniversary 
Brighton’s The Hundredth Anniversary cross the boundaries of ethereal, indie, dreampop & shoegaze. Wrapped in intense, whirling guitars & saturated in enchanting, reverberated vocals from Eleanor Rudge, 100th anniversary sound is beautifully atmospheric, mesmerising and frankly utter brilliant. Defiantly one’s to watch in which the likes of NME are also agreeing. Check them out for yourself plus their Daytrotter session they did very recently.

Fever
Grand choruses, tortured vocals, dark atmospheric guitars shadowing and full on fuzz, this quartet distort the lines of doom psychedelia, post punk, surf & grunge. Whilst its’ tough to liken a new outfit, so far Fever remind us of a mix of The Horrors, Arctic Monkeys and Eagulls. With Chris Pedan of Wild Smiles producing them and also being touted as one’s to watch by the NME your immune system will soon too give into Fever.

The Boy I Used To Be
Sun drenched, joyous garage pop with elements of psychedelia and folk, The Boy I Used To Be is like sipping a musical cocktail of the Unknown Mortal Orchestra, Cloud Nothings, Splashh & Kurt Vile. The revamped sound of The Boy I Used To Be started out as a bedroom project of Edward Perry’s & the recordings very quickly headed to our label where we signed ‘I Can’t Stand’ for our compilation 30 minutes after it was recorded. Certainly one Portsmouth’s finest musical talents.

It’s a bank holiday so come down and enjoy Easter the way it’s supposed to be, partying with some of the raddest new bands in the U.K all for a paltry four pound entry.

Strong Island Recordings Presents Drunken Sailor 18th April At Edge Of The Wedge

On Friday 18th April Strong Island Recordings presents ‘Drunken Sailor’ at Edge of the Wedge and we bring you a handful of some of our favourite up and coming acts today plus Champagne Justice deejays all for a mere £4.00 entry.

Arrows of Love
London grunge/art punk outfit Arrows of Love whirl up an absolute riot during every one of their live sets. The 5 piece are a total adrenaline rush where the entire venue is the stage and the show is an interactive experience and one you never know what’s going to happen except from utter chaos and absolute brilliance. Kerrang labelled them as one of the most engaging new bands plus NME, Front, Fake DIY, Artrocker, John Kennedy of XFM,Fake DIY, Lauren Laverne and many many more have also shown their support for AOL and now they return to Portsmouth with their debut album set to be unleashed around the same time too on 1234 Records.

Rickyfitts
Rickyfitts as a band are still very much in their infancy, forming just a few months ago yet they could well be one of the best new live bands you will see today. The duo bring blistering, sludge filled thrash punk, heavy psych, grunge rock . Despite being the nicest guys you could meet, they play with much ferociousness & are absolute merciless to their instruments, brutally pummelling them into near mush. Check out ‘Slouching Toward Nirvana‘ we released on our ‘Treacherous Tides’ compilation.

The Hundredth Anniversary 
Brighton’s The Hundredth Anniversary cross the boundaries of ethereal, indie, dreampop & shoegaze. Wrapped in intense, whirling guitars & saturated in enchanting, reverberated vocals from Eleanor Rudge, 100th anniversary sound is beautifully atmospheric, mesmerising and frankly utter brilliant. Defiantly one’s to watch in which the likes of NME are also agreeing. Check them out for yourself plus their Daytrotter session they did very recently.

Fever
Grand choruses, tortured vocals, dark atmospheric guitars shadowing and full on fuzz, this quartet distort the lines of doom psychedelia, post punk, surf & grunge. Whilst its’ tough to liken a new outfit, so far Fever remind us of a mix of The Horrors, Arctic Monkeys and Eagulls. With Chris Pedan of Wild Smiles producing them and also being touted as one’s to watch by the NME your immune system will soon too give into Fever.

The Boy I Used To Be
Sun drenched, joyous garage pop with elements of psychedelia and folk, The Boy I Used To Be is like sipping a musical cocktail of the Unknown Mortal Orchestra, Cloud Nothings, Splashh & Kurt Vile. The revamped sound of The Boy I Used To Be started out as a bedroom project of Edward Perry’s & the recordings very quickly headed to our label where we signed ‘I Can’t Stand’ for our compilation 30 minutes after it was recorded. Certainly one Portsmouth’s finest musical talents.

It’s a bank holiday so come down and enjoy Easter the way it’s supposed to be, partying with some of the raddest new bands in the U.K all for a paltry four pound entry.

Is Bliss Host Blissco At Bar 56 Friday 20th December

Tonight sees Is Bliss host ‘Blissco’ a free party at Bar Fifty-Six on Albert Road along with Ricky Fitts and Purr which will include blissful, reverberated hazed out vocals, a tornado of whirling guitars, explosive fuzz, an intense, face melting textured wall of noise and brutal anarchic sludge like thrash punk perfect for creating a riot fuelled mosh pit.

The event of course features one of the U.K’s promising new bands, Is Bliss who blur the lines between shoegaze, dreampop, grunge, doom psychedelia and post punk and have had a very positive 2013 with the release of their debut single ‘Desire’ as well as gaining praise and support from the likes of NME, Sexbeat and Amazing Radio. They were also very recently featured on the legendary Seattle station KEXP’s latest podcast. With an EP and tour forthcoming in the New Year, Is Bliss look set to bow out of 2013 in their hometown with a deafening bang. Also on the bill are label family and Portsmouth’s hottest new prospect who in such a short time are already proving to be one of the finest live bands around, thrash punk/grunge/sludge duo Rickyfitts. The 2 piece are set to blow the roof off of Bar Fifty-Six, smashing their instruments along the intoxicating journey that is their live set. You can catch ‘Slouching Toward Nirvana’ here released earlier this week on our Strong Island Recordings label. Purr, recently in the NME Radar will be bringing their alluring, charm like dreamy pop, shoegaze sound reminiscent of the nicer side of My Bloody Valentine with a hint of Cocteau Twins and also the delightful Melody’s Echo Chamber. Bands start around 8pm and finish around 10.30pm with Is Bliss members also deejaying afterwards. The event promises to be a great one, showcasing some of the area’s finest talent making waves outside of the PO postcode.








Gland Rock At The Southsea Social Club 7th December For Feel Yourself

Strong Island RecordingsPie & Vinyl, Champagne Justice and Beach Community  have teamed up to curate a monster Christmas charity one day music festival being ‘Gland Rock’ where all profits go to local charity Feel Yourself.

Gland Rock takes place at the Southsea Social Club on the 7th December and it’s a monster line up featuring the likes of the  Esben & The Witch, Wild Smiles (who supported The Rolling Stones at Hyde Park this summer), Blood Sport, Dead Rabbits, Ricky Fitts, Halo Halo, Shudder Pulps, You’re Smiling Now But We’ll All Turn Into Demons, The Hundredth Anniversary, Witching Waves, The Red Cords, Che Ga Zebra  and Strong Island Recordings own Yoofs plus more amazing acts still yet to be announced. The event takes place across two stages and tickets are a mere £10 and will go on sale soon at Pie & Vinyl and other outlets. The event will also host prizes and food so we all hope to make the event a fun filled, festive themed party with some great well known and local bands raising money for a great cause.

Here is some information about who we are supporting:

“The campaign was started by Maddie Wallace while she being treated for breast cancer. With no family history and no previous health problems, Maddie never bothered to check herself for lumps. Then one day she bumped into a friend – also a younger woman – who had just undergone chemotherapy for breast cancer, and that friend reminded Maddie how important it is to check yourself regularly. That probably saved her life.

Feel Yourself Campaign aims to promote awareness in younger men and women about the importance of checking for breast and testicular cancer. Both of these types of cancer are on the increase and catching them early is the key to successful treatment. Setting a reminder on your phone for a weekly check of your assets should not only be an essential part of your beauty or health regime, it could also save your life!”

You can follow Gland Rock on Twitter and more loads more details on the event and the bands involved can be found on Facebook HERE.

Feel Yourself (2)

Drunken Sailor Preview Part 13 – Arrows Of Love

Arrows of Love are the ultimate riot, mosh party band and they’re also the band who helped kick of the Strong Island Recordings label last year with the ‘Conspiracy Podcast’ 7” single so it’s only right they return to their home away from home and headline our stage once again. Since releasing ‘Conspiracy Podcast’ they have had another single out The Knife, destroyed the Great Escape festival, main staged Truck Festival which they gained high praise from the likes of Artrocker and Music Trespass (who gave the guy very high praise), toured Europe, headlined Nonsolorock Festival in Italy and are about to release an album currently being mastered by the legendary Bob Weston of Shellac who also was the assistant engineer on the classic ‘Utero’ album from a certain band called Nirvana.

Arrows of Love cross between punk and grunge and create a trashy, noise fueled set where they take over and utilise as much as the venue as possible. Through the whole set they’re engaging with the crowd while destroying everything in their path. They’re really not for the feint of heart and are a total experience which is why Kerrang labelled AOL as one of the most engaging new bands in 2013. They’re also the most down to earth, humble and nicest guys and girls you could meet so we really can’t wait to have them back.

You can catch Arrows Of Love headline our stage upstairs at the Southsea Social Club at Southsea Fest at 22.00.

Photos from Arrows of Love at The One Eyed Dog (1)

Photos from Arrows of Love at The One Eyed Dog (2)

Photos from Arrows of Love at The One Eyed Dog (3)

Drunken Sailor Preview Part 12 – The Black Tambourines

Danceable garage/surf punk outfit from Falmouth The Black Tambourines are going to be seriously fun and we’re very stoked to have them playing our stage. Having released their amazing ‘Chica EP’ a while back The Black Tambournines have just released their debut LP on Art Is Hard Records. You can listen to ‘Crosseyed’ premiered on Clash Magazine HERE. Great things are expected from these guys so catch them while you can. If you’re a fan of The Cramps, Fidlar, Bass Drum of Death, Thee oh Sees or Boneyards then these are the guys for you!

You can catch The Black Tambourines at 21.10 upstairs of the Southsea Social Club at Southsea Fest.

The Black Tambourines

Features

Photos from Head Jam 2014

For the second year running Head Mens Hairdressing, Strong Island and My Dog Sighs (this year with Lex Luthor) put on the Head Jam street art event on Albert Road in Southsea. The yard out the back of Head and the Strong Island HQ had last year’s artwork covered during last week and Saturday saw local artists My Dog Sighs, Los Dave, M-One, Lex Luthor, Mimic, Stu Linfield, I am Posy, freakSTATIC, Midge and Samo get involved with new artwork on all of the walls plus the new sculpture too. Extra artwork is also being added today by My Name is Leila. A huge thank you to all the artists and to everyone who popped by throughout the day.

Check some of the photos from the day below, you can see a load more on our Flickr (which is a growing archive of our photography over the last 6 years) or on our Facebook page and if you want to pop in and have a look visit Head at 53 Albert Road.


































Southsea Comedy Festival Competition | Win Two Tickets

The first ever Southsea Comedy Festival opens with Eddie Izzard performing his most recent show ‘Force Majeure’ on 31st July and 1st August. We have a pair of tickets to give away for the Thursday 31st July performance. All you have to do to win this prize is email stuart@strong-island.co.uk with your answer to the following three questions.

1) What is the name of the character voiced by Eddie in Cars 2?
2) In which American city did Eddie begin his 2014 tour Force Majeure?
3) For which charity did Eddie run an incredible 43 marathons in 51 days?!

The deadline for entries will be midnight Monday 21st July with the winner being announced Tuesday 22nd in the evening.

If you don’t want to risk missing out then Southsea Comedy Festival tickets are available by calling 0844 847 2362 and online at www.southseacomedyfestival.co.uk. You can follow the Southsea Comedy Festival on Twitter @SouthseaComedy.

Eddie Izzard Southsea Comedy Festival Logo

Southseacomedyfestival

Lookbook for Strong Island Clothing Co Summer 2014 Collection

We’ve been exceptionally busy over at Strong Island HQ for the best part of 2014 so far and the latest Strong Island Clothing Co range has been in development for some time. We are now proud to announce the launch of our latest line of tee and crew designs for the Summer. This is the biggest run we have done to date and we wanted to ensure it was a really strong range so didn’t want to rush it.

We have a wide range of new colours and designs including our first 2 colour print on the popular Refuse to Sink and a return to our second tee style back in 2010 with a backprint (this time in navy) in the classic Strong Island logo. We also have a seriously strong collaboration with University of Portsmouth graduate and award winning letterform designer Andy Lethbridge AKA Hand Type. These are something truly special and we’re really stoked how they came out, the detail in the print really reflects the brush strokes of Andy’s work. We will have more on Hand Type and the development of these designs on Strong Island soon in a full interview. We also have pocket tees with the new Down the Hatch design which form part of something we are keeping under our hats for bit…some old favourites have been revisited too with new colourways and 2 new graphic tees as well. Our latest crew retains the same quality as before featuring ribbed side panels, a back neck loop, deep cuffs, a double v-insert on the neckline and raglan sleeves but with new striped cuffs. With a more contemporary and slimmer fit than most sweatshirts it’s certainly a more premium line. As always all our tees and crews are hand screenprinted in East London by the mighty Lovenskate, including the anchor signoff on the back and detail on the inside neck.

We have a few more mini launches coming up over the next few weeks including more tees, something for the cyclists out there, some very special hand produced items from Poland using original 1940′s techniques and also something to lounge on in summer and keep you warm in the winter. Not to mention another very special artist collaboration too.

All of the tees and crews from the main, initial drop will be available this weekend during Head Jam at Head Hairdressing, 53 Albert Road, Southsea (weather permitting). They will then go online in Shop Ahoy next week.

For now please enjoy our latest Lookbook shot by Strong Island Media over at Dell Quay, Chichester. The perfect day to go for a wander around the marina, fields and woodlands with a few cheeky beers at the Crown & Anchor.

Lookbook for Strong Island Clothing Co Summer 2014 Collection (1)

Lookbook for Strong Island Clothing Co Summer 2014 Collection (2)

Lookbook for Strong Island Clothing Co Summer 2014 Collection (3)

Lookbook for Strong Island Clothing Co Summer 2014 Collection (4)

Lookbook for Strong Island Clothing Co Summer 2014 Collection (5)

Lookbook for Strong Island Clothing Co Summer 2014 Collection (6)

Lookbook for Strong Island Clothing Co Summer 2014 Collection (7)

Lookbook for Strong Island Clothing Co Summer 2014 Collection (8)

Lookbook for Strong Island Clothing Co Summer 2014 Collection (9)

Lookbook for Strong Island Clothing Co Summer 2014 Collection (10)

Lookbook for Strong Island Clothing Co Summer 2014 Collection (11)

Lookbook for Strong Island Clothing Co Summer 2014 Collection (12)

Lookbook for Strong Island Clothing Co Summer 2014 Collection (13)

Lookbook for Strong Island Clothing Co Summer 2014 Collection (14)

Lookbook for Strong Island Clothing Co Summer 2014 Collection (15)

Lookbook for Strong Island Clothing Co Summer 2014 Collection (16)

Strong Island, Lex Luthor & My Dog Sighs present Head Jam 2014 – Saturday 19th July

Last years Head Jam was such a resounding success with some of the nations best street artists that we eagerly began talking about the following year before the paint had even dried. We discussed how we could run the event again and where to do it, but the answer was simple and literally looking right at us. We hold it in the same place again. Make the courtyard at Head Hairdressing the centre of an annual event where the outcome is available to view for the year, then return, white wash the previous artwork away, and do it all again. After all, street art is an ever changing and developing media in it’s own right and in it’s usual environment where it gets ripped down, tagged, covered in fly posters, lost to demolition and built on, the artists have no fear of their art being lost. It’s part of the job so to speak…

Rick from Head Hairdressing at 53 Albert Road (just along from the Wine Vaults and next to Southsea Gallery) conceived the idea of having the courtyard to the rear of the local barbers transformed in to a permanent giant art piece. From precision multilayered stencils, through bubble gum cutsie to surreal illustrative mayhem, Lex Luthor and My Dog Sighs have hand picked some of their favourite artists to produce the ultimate street art dreamscape courtyard…again!

Head Jam will run all day so feel free to pop along, take a look, have a chat, hang out, meet the artists and enjoy the atmosphere. There will be music on all day, a BBQ turning over in the background if you want to stick a burger on (not supplied), and please feel free to bring along a beer too. Everyone is welcome, so bring the kids so they can see some of the finest street artists working together in this unique environment.

Attending artists include: MyDogSighs, Lex Luthor, Mimic, Fark, Nova, M-one Art, Los Dave, Stu Linfield, Morf, Freakstatic and Ooberla. Wow, this is going to be amazing! If you pop along please be sure to tag the event on Instagram and Twitter with the hashtag #HeadJam and we will put up a series of your photos from the day.

Strong Island Clothing Co will also be launching their latest range of tees and crews before they go online the following week. So if you want to get in there for an exclusive purchase before anyone else head on down and check it all out. Everything will be out to view, and there is a sneak peak at the end of this post (the full look book will go up this week). Also all of our PFC tees and crews are on offer, bargain. We look forward to seeing you all.

Old paint on a wall

Head Jam, photo by Matt Maber (1)

Head Jam, photo by Matt Maber (2)

Head Jam, photo by Matt Maber (3)

Head Jam, photo by Matt Maber (4)

Head Jam, photo by Matt Maber (5)

Head Jam, photo by Paul Gonella

Photos: Matt Maber

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Strong Island Blissfields 2014 Review By Sophie Perryer and Grace Aquilina – Day Three

Despite the effects of the night before, those who have arisen from their partially soggy tents and dared to walk through alcohol and rain sodden hay look forward to listen to live music at The Wild Stage and in The Hustle Den at midday. In keeping with the wildlife theme the crowd was littered with all sorts of animal themed costumes, and what I can only expect was a stag party of monkey’s.

Burning Beaches took to the stage at 12:00pm in The Hustle Den, where sleepy eyes were literally opened in awe of the band’s soft rock sound. Heavy bass woke even the most sluggish and grungy vocals perfectly complimented a latte. The vocals echoed around the tent, emphasising the roughness and fervency.

Blissfields is without a doubt well-deserved of it’s reputation for finding and nurturing local artists and upcoming talent, and this year was no exception; Saturday brought with it the chance for discovering yet more new artists, one of which being Australian singer-songwriter Ry X. His hazy almost whispered vocals drew comparisons to The xx and Blissfields favourites London Grammar, and Ry X transfixed the audience throughout his set with his soft tenor tones. His track ‘Berlin’ is well worth a listen.

Later on in the afternoon, Floella Grace wowed her audience in The Larch to complete silence and a dream-like-state. Her dreamy, sobering vocals accompanied by fellow string player Gareth and two silvery-voiced backing singers made for an awesome and enlightening performance. The ukulele was played sweetly and harmoniously with the slightly more robust guitar; the entire performance being one of sincerity courtesy of her unvarnished, honest lyrics.

After Floella Grace’s soothing and lulling performance, the audience was re-awakened with the The Boy I Used To Be’s garage pop sound. With breathy, low vocals and slightly metallic guitar riffs, the band’s ‘sun-drenched’ sound ironically complimented the gloomy Great British Weather.

A personal highlight of Saturday was the chance to catch Laurel in the Hustle Den; she has truly developed her own distinctive style, although it is easy to see why over the last year she has been compared to Lana Del Ray, Lorde, and Laura Marling. On stage, she mesmerises the crowd with her sultry and coquettish presence, and switches effortlessly between softer and louder tracks, such as the lead song from her Blue Blood EP, which showcases the depth and richness of her voice.

By now sky was taken over with cloud but with temperatures still high anticipation grew for the headliner, 2ManyDJs, the semi-incognito side project of prolific 90s DJs Soulwax. The Dewaele brothers’ experience was evident throughout their set, with their ability to bring the crowd effortlessly through highs and lows, and build the sweat and alcohol fuelled festival-goers into a frenzy. However, while there were certainly some sore heads as Sunday morning dawned, there were plenty of wide grins too.

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Daniel O'Neill Blissfields 2014
Cosmo Sheldrake @ The Hustle Den
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Beans On Toast Presents… At The Larch Stage
BS5
Chlöe Howl @ The Wild Stage
Daniel O'Neill Blissfields 2014
Laurel @ The Hustle Den
Daniel O'Neill Blissfields 2014 Laurel
Laurel @ The Hustle Den

The History of Aspex Gallery in Portsmouth – Cornelia Parker’s ‘Thirty Pieces of Silver’

We continue with our co-published history articles with aspex Gallery, researched by Laura McLean-Ferris who has recently been crawling through the Aspex Gallery archives and has produced a series of articles for aspex about their 33 year history. We’re very happy to partner up and cross post their aspex history blog posts here on Strong Island, you can see the original aspex blog post HERE. This fourth article in the series today looks at how aspex worked with Cornelia Parker in the late 1980s, and how Art Space Portsmouth & aspex became separate organisations.

Now in the Tate collection, Cornelia Parker’s Thirty Pieces of Silver (1988-89) is an installation of over 1000 pieces of silverware that the artist had flattened by a steamroller. Each is suspended from the ceiling using copper wire, hanging a few inches above the gallery floor in clustered puddles, forming a kind of grid. The work transforms domestic items, such as cigarette cases, trophies, and tableware, into pure elemental material, and yet each flat silver disc contains within it the ghost of a former life. Silver is commemorative – and many of the items are suggestive of occasions such as birth, retirement, engagement, triumph or memorial. The work displays Parker’s interest, around this time, in acts of material violence that expand the viewer’s engagement with the objects and materials around them.

The History of Aspex Gallery in Portsmouth - Cornelia Parker’s ‘Thirty Pieces of Silver’ (1)

Les Buckingham, then director of aspex, recalls seeing 30 Pieces of Silver at Ikon Gallery and being particularly taken with it, and so approaching Parker to invite her to show the work at aspex. ‘I knew the director of Ikon, Antonia Payne’, Buckingham remembers, ‘and she agreed that I could approach Cornelia about a second showing. The piece was installed at Ikon in the basement and was smaller than intended. When I talked to Cornelia she jumped at the chance to show it in a large and high space. The installation was the most complex of my career, filling the entire gallery, (1600 sq feet), and involving three weeks work and miles of fuse wire. Six to ten people worked on the project with the artist and the results were spectacular.’ Amusingly, there’s a note in the aspex archives which details that the height for suspension was ‘One toilet roll plus a piece of hardboard’.

The History of Aspex Gallery in Portsmouth - Cornelia Parker’s ‘Thirty Pieces of Silver’ (2)

In contrast to the way the work is now shown, visitors were able to walk between the pools of sculptures. Following a visit to aspex by the Arts Council the work was selected for the British Art Show. The artist discussed the time-lag that it took for the work to make an impact in a recent interview with The Guardian. ‘I made Thirty Pieces of Silver for the Ikon Gallery in Birmingham and it didn’t get a single review’, she says. ‘It wasn’t until it was shown at the British Art Show at the Hayward a year later that people noticed.’ The work was purchased for the Tate Collection in 1998.

aspex was also going through changes during this period. Following several years of working as an artist-run space, the threat of climbing rents compelled the organisation to transform to its status to a charity, which meant transforming the structure of aspex. In an effort to protect the gallery and studio artists from high rents, the decision was made to seek charitable status and Aspex Visual Arts Trust was formed. Buckingham remembers this as a complicated period of transformation for the organisation, which essentially split the studios from the gallery, but it was one that was necessary to secure aspex, as a resource that would continue to exist after its founders were no longer involved. Though the two are now separate entities, the Trust continues to work together with the artist founders at Art Space Portsmouth.

The History of Aspex Gallery in Portsmouth - Cornelia Parker’s ‘Thirty Pieces of Silver’ (3)

All images courtesy of the Aspex Visual Arts Trust Ltd. and the artist.