NN PICKS: DELS, The Roadhouse, 18th April

Ask anyone who knows and they’ll tell you the current UK Grime scene is hands-down the most innovative and important development in British music this decade. After the current generation essentially started the scene again from scratch after the bottom fell out of 2-step and Garage, there’s been a steady-feature creep and a legendary co-sign from Kanye at the Brits which put the spotlight on the current crop of artists. Whilst the bubble hasn’t burst yet and allowed everyone else a look in, there’s a... Read more »

GIRL_FRIEND_ARRIVE_ALONE_LEAVE_ALONE-FOR WEB (Credit - Ben Roberts, @benrobertsart) NN

NEW NOISE: Girl Friend

Manchester band Girl Friend have had a quick rise through the ranks since their formation only last year, and with their slick radio-friendly sound it’s not hard to hear why. Bursting onto the scene with the slight Joy Division-vibes of early release "Perfume", the band showcased a commodity that is all too rare nowadays – a singer who actually wants to be a pop star. He’s got the looks, the voice, and the Brett Anderson-esque moves, and in the slick video to last year’s single "Stop",... Read more »

Carefully Planned

LIVE: Carefully Planned Presents: No.25, The Castle Hotel, 14th March

Jarvis Cocker once asked “Do you remember the first time?” Well, I’ve probably got some pictures of it, though the first one was held in October 09, but the Carefully Planned events tend to get a bit messy by the end so one can’t be sure. Since then, the regularly held Carefully Planned events have introduced a host of bands to Manchester audiences, and for this finale the turnout fully embraced the warm affection held for Matt and the other organisers/workers. Repetition has not dulled the event's... Read more »

Gengahr NN Emma Swan

NN PICKS: Gengahr, O2 Academy, Liverpool 11th April

London four-piece Gengahr bring their psychedelic stylings to Liverpool’s O2 Academy on 11th April, supporting local band Circa Waves in what promises to be a great Saturday night out in the city. Gengahr take their cue from the more out-there bands of recent times such as MGMT and Tame Impala, but have an authentic rootsiness to their sound that reveals songs strong enough to hold the attention of the festival crowds they spent last summer winning over. Hook-laden new single "She’s A Witch" shows the best of... Read more »

Purity Ring NN

NN PICKS: Purity Ring, Manchester Cathedral, May 2nd

In early 2011, Corin Roderick and Megan James, two former members of the Canadian band Gobble Gobble, channelled their love of trap and modern RnB production into a heady brew of pitched down samples, Cocteau Twins-esque vocals and some seriously disturbing soundbites. Equally ready for the dancefloor or the smoking sesh that comes after, their songs enveloped gleaming hooks in a sizzurp and skunk laced fug leavened with enough celestial gravitas to get them signed to 4AD. In October of the same year, NN recalls going... Read more »