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Forged between 2 musical giants, St Helens based 4 piece STILLIA have plenty to draw upon when you consider the vast catalogues of Manchester and Liverpool’s rich musical heritage.
But with that kind of upbringing comes the weight of expectation and it is here that Stillia don’t disappoint. It’s all there in the lilting merseyside melodies, delivered by vocalist Jack Bennett with just enough Ashcroft-esque swagger, but also still far enough away, and presented by Bennett in the live environment with a refreshing and extremely likeable humility and self awareness. Add to that the music’s contemporary foundations laid by guitarist Connor Moran, bassist Johnny Waring and younger sibling Matty Bennett on drums and you get the impression that Stillia are an act heralding a long awaited new dawn of northern songwriting.
The debut single ‘Let Me In’ has splashes of the aforementioned, yet manages to leave you with an impression of a more forward thinking approach. Touching on more latter day luminaries such as The 1975, the songwriting and production quality to the release – and indeed the whole forthcoming debut album ‘From Ground to Light’ – has been carefully honed by the ‘Sugarhouse’ producers Ady Hall and Lee McCarthy.
Also part of the newly emerging Warrington / St Helens scene, the Sugarhouse team have been responsible for putting their sonic footprint on the likes of the late Viola Beach, with their forward thinking ‘indie’ productions consistently finding their way onto the nation’s airwaves by the more credible BBC tastemaker radio shows via an impressive range of new artists.
After Sugarhouse finished ‘Let Me In’ the band had another fellow St Helens dweller Johnny Vegas to thank for the video. The single promptly found its way onto daytime national TV after Vegas directed and appeared in the video as crazed stalker fan who eventually kidnaps vocalist Jack Bennett.
At this stage people were sitting up and taking notice. The band signed to Republic Music Management in Manchester and appeared at 20+ festivals during the summer of 2017. Stillia were starting to get a name for themselves as a must see live act, but ultimately it ALL boiled back down to the songwriting, that’s where they were really getting noticed from various quarters.
National promoters MJR started seeing potential and the band were asked to support Ocean Colour Scene on an Australian and New Zealand tour, taking in Dubai en route. This was then followed with their own debut UK headline tour in the December of 2017, culminating in a sold out end of year show at Manchester’s deaf institute.
Release-wise the brilliant ‘4AM’ followed as the bands second single, earning them further plaudits, with offers of national tour supports continuing from artists themselves known for having the knack for penning a nifty tune or two.
The band will be announcing upcoming live dates and national support tours for 2018 to coincide with the release of their 3rd single ‘Cold Coffee’ in March on Manchester label Beautiful Noise. This will be closely followed by a limited edition ‘double A’ side, colour vinyl 7” single for Record store day on April 21st and a special ‘vinyl launch’ Manchester show to celebrate the release of the single.
Stillia’s debut album ‘From Ground to Light’ will be released in the Spring of 2019 on Beautiful Noise Records.
This is a standing show. Presented by MJR Group.