We’re all likely to slightly overspend during the festive period, but that needn’t prevent you from seeing four of the finest up-and-coming North West outfits at Band on the Wall this Christmas. Alongside DJ and journalist Shell Zenner, we’re excited to bring MOLD, Afghan Sand Gang, Grimm Twins and New Luna to the venue on Sunday 23rd – a simple sign-up being all that’s needed for you to catch the lot free of charge. Shell will be spinning tunes throughout the night and there’s even the tantalising prospect of some Christmas classics like you’ve never heard them before (make of that what you will). You may well have heard something from these exciting bands already, but in case you haven’t, here’s the skinny…
Post-punk outfit MOLD are a group you cannot ignore. On a festival bill, amongst a Spotify playlist… their uncompromising sound grabs your attention and quite literally clutches your face, until its menacing lyrics and discordant tones have sunk deep into your psyche. Their sets are energetic and enthralling, which you’ll already appreciate if you had the good fortune of seeing them at Manchester Psych Fest in September, or perhaps opening for Screaming Females, Crack Loud, Drahla or Viagra Boys in Manchester, between then and now. Louder than War’s Nigel Carr recommends listening to the Residents’ 1974 album Meet The Residents for, ‘a starting point to understand what this band is about’ calling their live show, ‘45 minutes of non-stop, far out mayhem.’ If you like your rock music scathing and anarchic, dark and groovy, then MOLD are a band you’ll warm to immediately. Check out their recently released Death Suite below.
Hailing from Mossley, East of Manchester, Afghan Sand Gang are a three-piece group whose sound draws from the electronic regions of shoegaze and krautrock, as well as psychedelic rock and new wave. They recently released a new single, Glistener, which encapsulates that sound perfectly: tight programmed drums and slick bass, beneath sprawling electric guitars and delay-drenched vocals. The group opened for L.A. Witch in Manchester earlier this year and you can check out their new track and video below.
Macclesfield group Grimm Twins channel the energy and enterprising spirit of the bands that graced the Band on the Wall stage back in the late seventies. But rather than the Manchester Musicians Collective, they belong to Bleichpop Corporation Ltd., the North West collective home to several outstanding young bands and also known for having spray painted a tribute to late Fall frontman Mark E. Smith on Macclesfield’s White Nancy, earlier this year. Despite being only 12 months into their journey as a band, they’ve played Manchester Psych Fest, had their single Generation Z played on BBC Radio 1, and stated their intention to release a track per month for the foreseeable future. If that weren’t enough, they recently announced a heap of Grimm Twins and Bleich merch, bearing slogans and imagery that reflect their distinctive sound and creative aesthetic.
Forward-thinking indie quartet New Luna released their new single, Red Music, on Friday. Shaped by an appreciation for the music of Television, BC Camplight and Preoccupations amongst others, it led CLASH’s Robin Murray to state that the new single seemed to connect the band’s ‘dreamy, almost ambient side’ with the direct and visceral quality of their live performances. Stream the new track below.