Made up of Rebecca Hawley, Emily Lansley and Lucy Mercer, Stealing Sheep’s career to date has been one of slow, steady transition and wild innovative leaps. Loosely and lazily lumped as a folk band, the trio have long since proved their ability to create compelling new paths in their music, drawing on influence ranging from psyche and even tinges of kraut, through to taking inspiration from the likes of David Lynch, Ariel Pink and DIY, lo-fi pop. Their ever shifting focus has made them one of the most interesting acts in the UK – something highlighted by their spectacular live shows (with their headline performance at Sounds from the Other City in 2012 living long in the memory).
Stealing Sheep – Not Real on YouTube
Following a series of EPs stretching back to 2010, Stealing Sheep released their debut LP Into the Diamond Sun through Heavenly Records in 2012 to instant critical acclaim. The Fly noted it as “An album of wonderful surrealism”, awarding 8/10, backed up by MusicOMH (8/10), NME (8/10), and Drowned in Sound (7/10) among others. Their new album, Not Real, is due out in April and promises to be their most expansive, dreamy and ambitious effort to date.
Tickets are £10 and are available through See Tickets
Unarguably one of the most singular artists of his generation, Dan Deacon has had an interesting and varied career that has seen him do everything from running his own arts and music collective, through to hooking up with Francis Ford Coppola (creating the music for the film Twixt, as part as his ongoing forays into scoring films). More than any of this, Deacon is renowned as an innovative musician and as one of the most engaging live performers around. Coming to prominence after the release of his 2007 LP Spiderman of the Rings, Deacon’s sound has been compared to everything from happy hardcore through to bubblegum pop and avante-garde indie, but no pigeonhole can really contain a sound so unique. His latest effort, Gliss Riffer, has carried on dumbfounding crtics and earning their acclaim, with reviewers noting that it “offers escapism at its finest” (Consequence of Sound, 9.1/10), “an amicable balance between the hyperactive energies and extravagant compositional ideas” (Exclaim, 8/10) and “an adrenaline-filled milestone” (Boston Globe, 8/10).
Dan Deacon – Feel the Lightning on YouTube
Of his live show, there has been much written – but an early Pitchfork review of a performance in his native Baltimore perhaps captures the joy and rapture of seeing Deacon play in the flesh for the first time:
“It felt like I was hearing my entire childhood record collection of cheerful kiddie 45s sped up on a hotrodded Fisher Price record player. Deacon himself was dancing along with a joyous palsy, singing through a scrim of squeaky effects. In a night where I’d shown up wanting dance music, Deacon had completely upended my expectations. He also made me a fan for life.”
Tickets are £10 and are available through Skiddle.
Two years after the release of their last record, Arc, Everything Everything have returned – with their third LP, Get to Heaven, due out in June. Ahead of the release of their new album, the band will be playing an intimate show for Now Wave at Manchester Academy 2. Speaking of the new record, singer Jonathan Higgs said “[people are] not going to know what the fuck to do [with the new album]… I think you’d have to be blind and deaf to have lived through 2014 and not shed a tear… If you put out a record this year and it’s all smiles, then I think you’re a liar, basically.”
Everything Everything – Distant Past on YouTube
The band have long been one of the most singular and exciting bands anywhere in the world – with their 2010 album, Man Alive, acting as their calling card upon their release. Nominated for that year’s Mercury Music Award, with the NME noting that “there are three dirty words in [music] right now: ambition, intellect and effort. Everything Everything don’t just fit those terms, they pole-vault over them”. This latest installment of their career looks to be going down the same path – pushing boundaries in ways that others are unwilling or unable to.
Tickets are £16.50 and are available through See Tickets.
Now Wave are proud to reveal the line-up for the two stages that we will be running at Parklife festival. Headlined each day by James Blake and Caribou, elsewhere on the line-up features some of our favourite artists and some of the most exciting acts around – FKA Twigs returns to Manchester after a handful of captivating performances in the city, and Jamie XX once again coming to the Parklife in what is sure to be another seminal performance, while Mac Demarco, Hudson Mohawke, Chet Faker and Todd Terje will all bring their unique shows to Heaton Park.
The full line-up for each day reads as follows:
Nicolas Jaar (DJ)
Bernard & Edith
Now Wave DJs
Todd Terje & The Olsens
Now Wave DJs
Tickets are available via the Parklife website here.
Holly Fletcher has spent the last 12 months in somewhat of a whirlwind – going from being an 17 year old girl from Southport to being one of the most exciting and singular artists of the last few years under her Låpsley project. After releasing a few songs on Soundcloud, Fletcher was picked up by the blogs, and then by the press (being awarded the Get Into This “One To Watch” award soon after her Monday EP went online) and then, later, by XL Recordings.
Låpsley – Falling Short on YouTube
Having already played Glastonbury and been lauded by the likes of Radio 1, 2015 saw Flecther be included on the highly influential BBC Sound of… list, as well as the release of her Understudy EP. Among the many to give it acclaim, DIY magazine awarded perfect marks, noting “Fletcher is a master of blank space, using it in perfect measure with her pervasive vocals and delicate instrumentation… ‘Understudy’ is an EP constructed with confidence and exactitude – who knows what she could come up with next”. This will be her debut Manchester show.
Låpsley – Painter (Valentine) on YouTube
First Chop Brewing Arm is a unique venue, situated in one of the previously-derelict railyway arches on the line that cuts up the border between Manchester and the start of Salford, down by the old Granada Studios set. A focal point at Sounds from the Other City – at which it debuted last year – it doubles as a bar and a brewery, and will be a perfectly intimate setting for the show.
Tickets are on sale Friday at 10am via Gigs & Tours.