Recommended: Money release new video

It certainly wouldn’t be overegging the pudding to say Money are one of the most exciting new(-ish) bands in Manchester, and having played for us a handful of times (including a glorious set at Salford’s Sacred Trinity Church, as well as two secret collaborations with Sways Records at their Fuhrer Bunker warehouse) and recently completed a tour of France, the four-piece have returned with a new track and a video to accompany it.

New single ‘So Long (Godisdead)’ just about sums up why they’re such an important prospect: a heavenly combination of bittersweet vocals and softly building, atmospheric guitars, on a parallel with the likes of Wild Beasts’ ‘End Come Too Soon’.

Money play our ‘New Sounds of the North‘ event for FutureEverything, alongside headliners Alt-J and No Ceremony, who play their debut show. Tickets are available from See Tickets. Guinea-Bissau city maps

Preview: Grimes, Islington Mill

With her latest album ‘Visions’ being released this month (her first for new label 4AD), we’re excited to bring Grimes to Islington Mill this May. Claire Boucher has produced some of the most affecting and eclectic electronic music of recent years and her latest release is no exception, combining influences from 80’s pop, abstract dance and industrial. Her fourth release in just two years, ‘Visions’ is unrivalled in new music, as one of the most daring yet accessible releases so far this year.

Having been influenced by the DIY scene in hometown Vancouver, Boucher moved to Montreal in 2006 and has since become a fixture that features that likes of Tune-Yards and Purity Ring. As well as producing solo, Grimes has released split vinyl with the likes of Hippos In Tanks signing D’eon, while her latest project – a collaboration with fellow Montrealer Cop Car Bonfire, the glitchy and abrasive Membrain – is due to have its debut EP released later this year.

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After a string of US dates – including support slots for Austra and Lykke Li – and a handful of UK dates in 2011, we’re looking forward to having Grimes in Salford as part of her most extensive European tour to date. Tickets for Grimes at Islington Mill are available from See Tickets and Skiddle.

News: James Blake for exclusive Harmonimix set

Now Wave and Hit&Run have joined forces for a huge line-up of cutting-edge dance music on 6th June at a secret Manchester venue, headlined by James Blake. The London-based producer will be performing a set of his celebrated Harmonimix material, DJing with Manchester’s MC Chunky as host before collaborating with grime star Trim for an exclusive half-hour set.

Trim will later perform a set of his own material and Riz MC and Hyetal will act as main support. DJs from Now Wave, Hit&Run, Selective Hearing and Work Them complete the line-up.

After a hugely successful DJ set at last year’s Warehouse Project, we’re thrilled to have James return to Manchester for another unique offering of complex, thrilling dubstep, at a secret central Manchester venue.

Tickets are now available from Skiddle and See Tickets.

Preview: Kindness, Soup Kitchen

Kindness first found his way into record boxes a few years back, when a little-promoted single on Moshi Moshi, ‘Swinging Party’, caused an unexpected stir. Re-edited by alternative techno God Ivan Smagghe, its gentle beat and perfect end of night vibe became a firm favourite of DJs closing rooms everywhere. After this ultimately rather nice release, Kindness, otherwise known as Adam Bainbridge, was nowhere to be seen, nor heard… Those few years later, and Kindness is set to release his debut album, ‘World, You Need A Change Of Mind’, supported by a UK tour, including a show in Manchester for Now Wave at Soup Kitchen.

So how’s the sound developed? Well, forwards and backwards. The melancholy and slight nostalgia first exhibited on ‘Swinging Party’ remain in force but beyond that, the album extends its sound into all corners of weird funk and modern pop. A retrofit 80s aesthetic is hardly news, but Kindness explores a very specific kind of synth sound to bring his musical vision to life. As if to cement his intentions, the album features a cover of Anita Dobson’s ‘Anyone Can Fall In Love’, as its centrepiece.

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What Kindness does best, is create warm, encompassing pop music. Mastered in the studio by Phillippe Zdar (last responsible, of course, for Phoenix’s exempelary Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix) it’s an odd but reassuring tapestry of ideas. With Zdar at the helm, and support from a range of dance music alumni, ‘World…’ may feel like a throwback album, but it’s certainly an idiosyncratic and very current one at that.

Regardless of whether you care about how or how not Kindness’s debut LP was produced, only the stony-hearted could deny the wonderous, spring morning appeal of ‘Cyan’, or the absolute standout, ‘House (All That You Need)’. Certain to win over the curious at festivals all summer long, Kindness debuted his new live show in a specially constructed and hard to explain Saharan tent in Dalston last month to much acclaim. Catch him at the Soup Kitchen to see what this always individual, already unpredictable, artist has to offer.

Tickets for Kindness at Soup Kitchen are available from Skiddle and See Tickets.

Interview: Maria Minerva

Sunday 6th May sees Now Wave return to Salford’s Islington Mill to curate a stage at this year’s Sounds From The Other City. Headlining our ‘female-focussed’ line-up, Maria Minerva‘s sample-heavy leftfield pop is guaranteed to be a highlight of the festival. We had a short chat with Maria to discuss her work on Not Not Fun and her vision for the future.

We think your music is a very intriguing mix of pop and messed up sculptured sounds like Ariel Pink or James Ferraro. Where do you see your aural aesthetic coming from & how do you create it?

“I suppose it comes from my head and heart and the internet. I sample a lot. “Messed up sculptured sounds” – I like that, thanks. A lot of people want to discuss like feminism or club music in my oeuvre but not that many talk about the sonic dimensions I have tried to come up with.”

You’ve worked with the Not Not Fun label, one of our favourite labels – do you have a shared aesthetic with label founder Amanda Brown?

“Well, for sure we like a lot of similar stuff; weird stuff, and house music. But I also think that even if Amanda’s project LA Vampires and my music might sound similar – that is lo-fi or dance-y – at the end of the day we are both super individual as artists and have different reasons for doing stuff. Our collabo album will come out in June though and it’s been a big labour of love as we both were on the same page since day 1.”

People seem to love you (or occasionally the opposite)…. Any idea what evokes such a strong reaction in listeners? 

“I always fear that I am not likeable enough and it is kinda hard to deal with criticism sometimes. I am learning how to cope with it. Also, I like extremes – high brow intellectual stuff and campy shit – so all-in-all there is a lot of artistic pose in what I do and how I come across as a person. I know I ain’t an outsider artist but I don’t think that people can relate to me very easily either. I always doubt myself so as an artist, especially in person or on stage, I might come across as insecure and neurotic. The pose I present is not very coherent, I know. So maybe this is what forms a part of the music’s appeal but also means that there are gonna be haters.”

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How does the live show differ from record?

“It differs in the sense that I am very reluctant to do the tracks of mine that people know and it can be very hermetic at times. I ain’t that big of a crowdpleaser. I am working on it.”

You’re playing for us at this year’s Sounds From The Other City Festival. Does the word Salford bring anything to mind?!

“I’ve lived in the UK since August 2010 but my time here has been very London-centric. Well, I have been to Manchester and had a super fun time thanks to the Piccadilly Records/Boomkat boys, I know you guys up there are really avid music freaks.”

What does the next year hold for you?

“Hopefully love and happiness! And loads of work/touring. The collaboration with LA Vampires will come out in June, my sophomore album on Not Not Fun in August and I am doing some cool one-off collabs with various people and trying to keep things exciting.”

Tickets for Sounds From The Other City – which include a wristband to see acts on over 10 stages – are available for £18 here.