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Strong Island Recordings Label Party – Dead Rabbits, Yoofs And Melt Dunes At Edge of The Wedge

On the 7th March, Strong Island Recordings takes over The Edge of The Wedge in Southsea with three label acts being Dead Rabbits, Yoofs and newest signings Melt Dunes formerly known as ELEPHANTANTRUM plus The Boy I Used to Be DJ’s all for just £3.00. It’s our first label party of the year of what looks like is going to be the biggest year of our little label so we’d love to party with everyone celebrating a very exciting 2015 for us here at the musical arm of Strong Island. Tickets for the show can be purchased here and also in our store at 12 Highland Road. More details can also be found on the Facebook event page.

party again

The Unknown Soldiers & PopoBawa At The Loft This Friday

Horny Goat Music Presents spearheaded by Zach Wiggins and Amrit Sondh as an outlet for putting on shows of acts they love returns this Friday at The Loft  and features some Strong Island favourites following on from successful, packed out nights that have included the likes of Rickyfitts and The Planes.

Headliners for the show are psychedelic-doom rock Gosport outfit The Unknown Soldiers. A sand storm of psychedelia,  the sonic journey of the quartet is like being dropped in the middle of a sun baked desert during a spaghetti western.On the other side of the psychedelic realm, support comes from NME & KEXP favourites PopoBawa bringing their sun tinted, tropical, jangly psychedelic pop. We love PopoBawa over here at Strong Island. They’ve played a couple of shows for our Strong Island Recordings label so we advise you get down early for them as they’re certainly one of the most  unique bands to come from this part of the south-coast for a while. If you haven’t seen them live yet, they’re joyous, blissful, summer tinted goodness that for at least half an hour will make you forget we’re in the midst of a bitter cold winter and instead will conjure up images of dancing in the middle of a field during the summer festival season. Also playing the  show is acoustic act Tamara Jane who shall be opening the night.

Tickets for the show are £4 in advance or £5 on the door. Wrap your ears around The Unknown Soldiers and PopoBawa below. More details including where to purchase tickets can be found on the Horny Goat Presents Facebook event page here.

us the loft

New Victorious Festival Line Up Additions

Portsmouth’s grandest party being Victorious Festival returns on the weekend of the 29th and 30th August and with it comes arguably the biggest line-up to ever hit Portsmouth. The latest additions are testament to Victorious’s year on growth as a festival with a heavyweight collection of new additions to the festival that takes place along Southsea. Legendary psychedelic- space- experimental rock outfit The Flaming Lips, regarded as one of the greatest live bands on the planet will be coming to Portsmouth bringing their visually stunning spectacle that is their live set along with one of Britain’s largest crossover exports in recent years being Tinie Tempah. NME & BBC Radio 6 favourites Honeyblood of Fat Cat Records return to Portsmouth less than a year after playing Southsea Fest another of Portsmouth’s fine festivals that take place in the latter half of the year. The line-up also features the likes of The Amazing Snakeheads,  Bipolar Sunshine,  The Magic Numbers and Texas. Tickets at present are just £18 a day and allows festival attendees access to attractions such as The D-Day Museum, Southsea Skatepark and Blue Reef Aquarium so it’s an absolute steal.

Stephfest Colbchella '012 Rocktaugustfest | The Intrepid | 08/10/12

Strong Island Recordings Label Party & New Additions To The Roster

At Strong Island Recordings we’re hosting our first show of the year on the 7th March at Edge of the Wedge where for the first time ever, all acts, including DJ’s are part of our Strong Island Recordings family so we’re very excited.

Playing the show is shoegaze, psychedelic outfit Dead Rabbits, psych-pop Bournemouth duo Yoofs who we released their debut album ‘Something’ on our label last year and brand new additions to our label, Melt Dunes now formerly known as ELEPHANTANTRUM.

Our minds were blown by the local Southampton quartet so we decided we had to have them on our label. Crossing between brooding, doom ridden psychedelia and fuzzed out garage rock, Melt Dunes are the soundtrack to your nightmares. Catch them at our label party on the 7th March where entry is a mere £3.00 and includes The Boy I Used To Be deejaying which should be fun. You can find more about the event here. All photos below are by Toby Jezard who kindly photographed our cash-free, food donation label party in December.

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Strong Island Recordings All Dayer Preview Part Four – Death of The Author, Verletzt, The Park Studio

So our Strong Island Recordings all day cash free Christmas party takes place tomorrow at The Eastney Cellars.  Entry is a donation of non perishable food that will go to local food banks. The party kicks off from 13.00pm with the ever great Champagne Justice playing music throughout the day.  You can find the Facebook event here for set times. Make sure you head down early and do rummage through your cupboards, the more items, the more help we can all give. In the mean time check out the remaining acts playing our bill plus our sponsors The Park Studio.

A tornado of whirling guitars, new outfit Death Of The Author are one of Hampshire’s latest exports delving into the world of shoegaze. The trio are an immense sonic assault upon your senses and very recently blew the roof of Bar 56 at our Southsea Fest stage. Viscerally exciting, they remind us of the intensity of label family Is Bliss, which is a great thing indeed.

Comprising of members of Battery Hens, Protein Window and Neil co head honcho of Champagne Justice, Verletzt are one of the newest DIY noise rock outfits in Portsmouth. They’re scuzzy noise rock, stoner- doom, drone outfit taking you into a new realm of weirdness. Sabbath esque riffs coated with eerie vocals, Verletzt give a heavy nod to their leftfield influences in a charmingly scrappy way.

Not a band but very much integral to the event and also aspects of our label overall is The Park Studio. The studio shall be kindly supplying us backline for the show which in turn helps us keep the show free. Ran by Max of Rickyfitts and formerly Is Bliss, the studio based in Denmead is the recording and practice space of label family and friends including Rickyfitts, Is Bliss, The Boy I Used to Be, Wyldest, Battery Hens, The Planes, Verletzt and many more offering incredibly cheap rates including 3 hours of rehearsal time for £20. If you’re a band or solo artists, do check them out.

 

 

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Strong Island Recordings All Dayer Preview Part Three- The Boy I Used To Be, Nevermind Me, Bittertown Mary’s

Okay so we’re up to part three of four of the previews for our Strong Island Recordings cash free, charity party at The Cellars in Eastney  on the 13th December where entry is a donation of non-perishable food that will go to local food banks. The event will feature 11 bands throughout the day and kicks off from 13.00pm with Champagne Justice DJ’s throughout the day and evening. You can find the Facebook event here.

We’re delighted to bring back extended label family The Boy I Used to Be, We’re fortunate and privileged to say we’re the first label to release the delightful duo back last year on our compilation and now they’re singed to our splendid pals, Pie & Vinyl. The duo are the ultimate Christmas band, if you live in Australia. Sun drenched, garage pop akin to the likes of Splashh, The Growlers and Unknown Mortal Orchestra; whilst also giving a nod to psych- folk influences such as Kurt Vile, every The Boy I Used To Be track is joyous and makes you want to high five the sun whilst sipping cocktails on the beach.

Playing their first ever show despite a couple of cassette releases, we’re honoured to have London’s Nevermind Me down playing our all day party. Dreamy, melancholic vocals topped with beautifully textured guitars, Nevermind Me create a colourful explosion of noise crossing between shoegaze, alt rock and parts of psychedelia. They’re an exhilarating journey of gorgeous noise.

Playing late afternoon is noisy, local favourites Bittertown Mary’s playing their first ever Strong Island Recordings show. Intertwining between the stylings of early doom metal as well grunge and stoner rock and seemingly taking strong influences from the likes of Led Zeppelin, Sabbath and Nirvana, Bittertown Mary’s inflict sonic pounding, primal riffs all wrapped in sandpapered, gruff vocals and distorted, obnoxious fuzz. It’s a splendid, sonic slap to the face.

Strong Island Recordings All Dayer Preview Part Two – Curxes, Fever, Elephantantrum

As you may have seen earlier in the week, we’re previewing all the acts playing our Strong Island Recordings all day party at The Cellars 13th December where entry is a donation of non-perishable food that will go to local food banks. So it’s next to nothing entry and you get to see a handful of some of the most exciting acts across the south who are blowing up the blogosphere.  The event is also in association with The Park Studio who shall be supplying us with backline which saves us money and thus we can keep the event effectively free so do check them out.  We’re now onto the second part of our previews so do check out the acts below as they’re incredible to say the least.

Frenetic blitz-pop purveyors Curxes are a sumptuous assault to the senses. A thunderously exciting combination of a harpy’s call, electronic acrobatics, pounding bass and thumping drum rhythms, with gothic tones underpinning the bombastic layers riding on top, Curxes are as infectiously catchy as they are ferociously intelligent.

Next up is Southampton’s Fever. Fuzzy, doom like surf combined with jangly indie- rock and grunge all laced in memorable hooks; Fever are like a cross between Arctic Monkeys, The Horrors and The Wytches. Produced by Chris Pedan of Wild Smiles and with support from NME to KEXP, Fever are one of the most promising new bands from the south.

Brand new quintet, Elephantantrum are a journey into the darkest netherworld of the psychedelic realm. Brooding guitars and synths, distorted fuzz, tortured wailing vocals, all reminding you of a cross between Tame Impala and The Wytches, Elephanantrum are the soundtrack to your nightmares. Parts of of their tracks are like wandering alone in a circus at night with the impending doom of being hunted by psychopathic clowns, it’s eerily marvellous. Easily one of the most exciting and unique bands to come out of the south coast. Head down early evening to catch a rare glimpse of the band playing in Portsmouth. They certainly fit the ethos of a Strong Island Recordings party for sure.

Our cash free, charity Christmas all day party opens its doors at 13.oopm with Champagne Justice deejays playing throughout the entirety of day and night between acts. You can find the Facebook event here.

xmas party

The Shivas of Burger Records & The Red Cords At The Edge of the Wedge 11th December

Champagne Justice have pulled together a very great last minute show at The Edge of the Wedge called Blownzone on Thursday 11th December featuring a couple of the finest garage rock acts from both America and the U.K. Portland’s The Shivas of the legendary Californian label Burger Records (Ty Segall, Thee Oh Sees, Dave Grohl and many more) are playing Portsmouth in only one of three U.K shows during their European tour as well as one time Strong Island Recordings act and now full time PNKSLM shredders, The Red Cords who are very incredible to say the least. It’s a rather massive coincidence both acts were free for the same date and it’s certainly one of the strongest line-ups  musically in Portsmouth for a while no doubt. Entry to the event is a mere £5.00 and doors open at 20.00pm. If you’re a fan of psych rock/garage rock akin to the likes of Ty Segall, Thee Oh Sees, Coachwhips, Bass Drum of Death, Black Lips etc then head down for a rare glimpse of some of the finest, gnarly garage rock acts around. The Facebook event can be found here.

 

Red cords shivas

Strong Island Recordings All Dayer Preview Part One – Rickyfitts, Dead Rabbits, Wyldest

So we’re approaching our first ever Strong Island Recordings Christmas party where we’ve curated a monster of a line-up in association with The Park Studio in Denmead featuring eleven bands plus Champagne Justice DJ’s and the entry for the event is a donation of non-perishable food that will go to local food banks. That means you don’t have to spend a single penny of your Christmas funds if you wish. It’s ultimately a win-win-win for all. We’re going to be posting four previews of the event over the next two weeks so you can get to know some of the bands on the bill.

First up is our headliners for the day being Rickyfitts. We had them on our Treacherous Tides compilation last year just two months after they formed and since then the guys are proving to be one of the finest and most explosive live bands in the U.K. Creating tinnitus inducing noise, annihilating their instruments, grunge tinted, thrash punk duo Rickyfitts are a tidal wave of ferocious fuzz. Having mini toured with thrash-pop Aussie twosome DZ Deathrays and a plenty of new recordings, Rickyfitts are going to sign off of 2014 with a bang.

Another of our extended label family who we’re fortunate to have playing our all dayer is Dead Rabbits. Fresh from their European tour and the release of their second album, Dead Rabbits are going to be bringing a whirling, beautiful racket to The Cellars. Crossing between psychedelia, shoegaze, space rock and also flirting with the boundries of drone, Dead Rabbits are a band Alan Mcgee would have signed had they been around during the height of Creation Records. Think The Jesus & Mary Chain crossed with The Telescopes.

This next act played their first ever gig actually at The Cellars just five months ago. Since then they’ve added an extra member being Jack, touring drummer of Sub Pop’s Still Corners, blown up the blogosphere, mainstaged Green Man Festival, wowed everyone at Southsea Fest, graced the BBC Radio 1 airwaves and also were chosen of hundreds of bands to play the This is Fake DIY all dayer. They are of course Wyldest. Creating ever gorgeous melodies, wrapped in a gentle, wobbling bassline and enchanting, yet powerful vocals, the dreampop trio are like a cross between Beach House, Warpaint and Cocteau Twins.

 

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Neneh Cherry ‘Brown Rice Soundsystem’ At The Wedgewood Rooms In Support Of Arms Around The Child

Having released ‘Blank Project’ produced by Four Tet gaining critical acclaim from the likes of NME, Pitchfork and Guardian, the legendary Neneh Cherry  shall be going back to her DJ roots at The Wedgewood Rooms on the 29th November for a ‘Brown Rice Records’ takeover where all profits go towards Arms Around The Child. Arms Around The Child looks after children living in extreme adversity in South Africa and India. The charity provides loving homes, outreach care, education, medical treatment and love and respect providing hope for the future of the children they care for.  

You can purchase tickets from here and if you’re interested in looking into the fantastic work the charity does, you can so here. The event looks like it’s going to be a special one. As it’s a Wedgewood Rooms club night, entry to the event is over 18’s only.

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Created Local – Caleigh Illerbrun

Old University friend Tom Hall sent me over a link to his extremely talented and prolific girlfriend Caleigh Illerbrun’s online portfolio www.caleigh-ill.com. With illustration, painting and 3 dimensional work firmly tucked under her belt Caleigh has an impressive amount of work on her site, some of which is up for grabs. Currently selling coasters over in her SHOP, Caleigh needs a little help identifying the favourites as she has an advert coming out soon in a magazine.

I’m loving the ‘Wood Tree’ coaster set below, and very much so the ‘Bearlamb’ acrylic & pen at the bottom. You can also follow Caleigh on Facebook and also her blog.

HMS Vanguard (1960)

Man, these photos are pretty damn epic. Both show the HMS Vangaurd that went aground just feet away from alongside the Still & West and Spice Island in 1960.

“On 4 August 1960, when she was to be towed from Portsmouth to the breakers yard at Faslane, Scotland, the whole of the Southsea sea front was packed with people to see her off. As she was being towed towards the harbour entrance, she slewed across the harbour to the Still & West public house and went aground. She was eventually pulled off by tugs and finally made her exit from Portsmouth. Five days later she arrived at Faslane and by the spring of 1962 Vanguard ceased to exist, never having fired her guns in anger.” (from Wikipedia)

It’s also great to see that area of Old Portsmouth in detail from 50 years ago. There is no sea wall in place, some kind of out building on the corner of Spice Island, what looks like early dry dock developments and I love the way Broad Street goes straight in to the drink. See what you can see. Click the images for a much closer look.

Via : Jainbow

New Book – Portsmouth from Family Archives

A new book called ‘Portsmouth from Family Archives’ has just been published. Brothers Jonathan and Matthew Ring started developing the book last summer. All the photographs included in the book were from their grandparents. They spent a great deal of time compiling, scanning and restoring slides and film from 1950s to 2006, including behind the scenes filming in Portsmouth.

The 100-page book is available online at Amazon. Bonzo Studio and Southsea Gallery on Albert Road, Southsea are currently selling it, and they hope other shops will sell it too. They are also planning to do the summer market at the Square Tower, Old Portsmouth.

“It’s been great fun, and such hard work keeping it a secret from everyone! We hope everyone enjoys the book and the photos inside it as much as we did.”

Photos below – A photo of Jonathan Ring, their Grandmother and Matthew Ring; unveiling the book to their grandparents; book cover and the slides.

Facebook group can be found here: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Portsmouth-From-Family-Archives/164827033632175

Sneak Peek - Showing the Grandparents the Portsmouth Book

Slides - Portsmouth Book (Coming Soon)

Nike Football’s ‘Risk Everything’ by Portsmouth Studio ilovedust – Exclusive Interview

In the last few weeks Nike launched ‘Risk Everything’ their new football marketing campaign that features the England football team as well as other players from all around the world including Cristiano Ronaldo & Neymar Jr. Risk Everything also includes the new England kit for the 2014 World Cup with striking imagery of the players and the three lions. The artwork & branding of this vast, international marketing campaign by one of the largest brands in the World was created by Portsmouth’s very own award winning ilovedust design studio, located at the heart of the city. Established in 2003 the company and design team have grown dramatically, working with international brands as well as on local projects. Strong Island caught up with ilovedust’s Matt Howarth, senior designer, and found out more about ILD’s involvement with Nike’s Risk Everything:

ilovedust has been working with Nike for some time, can you give us a quick history of how you hooked up with them initially? Some of the past projects with them that you guys have been particularly stoked on?

We’ve been working for Nike for the last 7 years, it all started off with an illustration for a Jordan x Levis 501 project back when we were a small 4 man studio, i guess we did a pretty good job and the word spread internally at Nike world headquarters that ilovedust knew their shit! Since then we’ve grown our relationship year on year and been lucky enough to meet some inspiring people and work on some great projects along the way.

Can you give us some background on when and how you guys got involved in the England World Cup promotional branding and Risk Everything?

The initial brief for the “Risk Everything” campaign came from advertising agent Wieden & Kennady (W+K) in Portland, Oregon, over the years we have a made a few friends there and they emailed us way back in September saying they’ve got the perfect project for us! The project became so big that we ended up working directly with the Nike Football department directly.

Nike Football's 'Risk Everything' by Portsmouth Studio ilovedust

From what has been released already I’ve seen the mural on the Southbank of Jack Wilshire & Wayne Rooney the backdrop for the England team for their World Cup kit, retail displays and more, it is clearly a huge project, can you break down what is involved in a project of this scale?

Oh god… where to start!! Initially W+K briefed us to create illustrations for their 5 top footballers to be used in a print campaign (these will released in a couple of weeks), then Nike Football tasked us with creating illustrations for 7 different countries which Nike will be sponsoring at the World Cup, these would be used online and across retail destinations in each of the 7 countries. Since all of these have been completed we’ve been contacted by W+K London, Amsterdam, Rio and Tokyo for additional illustrations, this is where the Wayne Rooney/Jack Wilshere piece comes in to play, curated by W+K London and currently on display on the Southbank.

Nike Football's 'Risk Everything' by Portsmouth Studio ilovedust (5)

With Risk Everything you guys have stamped your distinct signature style all over it, what level of creative control do Dust and the team have in the collaboration with Nike?

When the brief came in it referenced a lot of our work, the client had a distinct idea of what they wanted, we took it, run with it, and made it better. Luckily we have good, open relationships with our clients, and we know a thing or two about football, so they trusted us.

As well as having your main studio in Portsmouth you have a studio in Portland, working with a brand the size of Nike and a project of this scale have there been practical issues with working with a brand on the other side of the World? Advantages?

We’ve visited Nike HQ 3 times during this project and our small studio in Portland has allowed us to work on the project in real time with the clients. We’re used to being 8 hours ahead of them everyday, and working until midnight is not uncommon, so being able to work and get feedback instantaneously was a real advantage.

Nike Football's 'Risk Everything' by Portsmouth Studio ilovedust (1)

The ilovedust lion is the striking backdrop for the England team in the new Nike kit in the run up to the World Cup, what design constraints did you experience (if any) with working with essentially a national sporting icon? Were the FA involved in sign-off?

This project was a fun one to work on with hardly any design restraints, and as far as we know The FA were not involved in sign-off, but as with all Nike work it had to go through legal checks, we we’re pretty safe with the 3 lions.

The lion and associated artwork are already gracing huge sports retailers’ windows plus on TV adverts, how does if feel seeing your work on this level in the UK?

It’s always nice to see months of hard work pay off when it’s released to the world – a bit surreal to see it in shop windows in your hometown!

Nike Football's 'Risk Everything' by Portsmouth Studio ilovedust

I’m assuming there is still much more to come in the run up to June and the World Cup? Will you guys be getting out to Rio?

Yes, lots more to come. The “Risk Everything” campaign will run beyond the World Cup and into next season so we have started to work on a different style of illustration for Europe’s top clubs; Barca, Man Utd, PSG, Juventus etc etc

ILD is home to some die hard Portsmouth FC fans, ever think about what you could do in regards to the club in respect to design? Maybe a new kit for 2014/2015 season?

Ha, the current kit’s not too bad but i’m sure we could improve it if given the chance!

Without letting too many cats out of the bag, what other projects are you guys working on for 2014?

Some very cool projects in the pipeline, one for Pepsi which is also World Cup related, we’re continuing to work with Microsoft for the launch of Xbox One’s Sunset Overdrive computer game in 2015, hmmm what else… lots more Nike that’s for sure, a few bits for Red Bull and a couple of top secret projects which you’ll have to wait for… sorry!

The Risk Everything artwork continues to roll out through the press and on TV, below are some images of the artwork already in the wild, be sure to keep up with the ILD website, blog, Twitter, Instagram & Behance to see more.

Nike Football's 'Risk Everything' by Portsmouth Studio ilovedust (3)

Nike Football's 'Risk Everything' by Portsmouth Studio ilovedust (4)

Matt Saxey’s Bike Ride Photos

Head on over to Matts Flickr and check out a few more photos from last Sunday’s ride. Great photos that really help capture the event.

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ride1

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