HEIST OR HIT (ENGLAND)
Written by Stéphane Mathé on 6 février 2018
Heist or Hit is an independent record label and music publishing company.
Located in Manchester and London, UK.
Tied to the tracks since 2008
Interview with Mick Sholefield from Heist Or Hit :
THE ARTISTS / RECORDS
Her’s are a Liverpool based pop duo consisting of Stephen Fitzpatrick and Audun Laading.
As outsiders from sleepy coastal towns on different coastlines, Stephen Fitzpatrick from Barrow in Furness and Norwegian Audun Laading met for the first time in Liverpool as students. The pair bonded over a love of peculiar, sardonic humour and wide eyed observations. Dream-pop outfit Her’s is the natural extension to the solitary decoding of the cultures they grew up in.
Her’s craft the kind of perfect oddball pop that has seen them already draw effusive praise from the blogosphere for their colourful craftsmanship. Ostensibly off-kilter enough to slide into the headphones of anybody with a penchant for Ariel Pink or Mac DeMarco, Her’s go above and beyond the current British indie vocabulary.
More infos : https://www.facebook.com/thatbandofhers/
Still Parade is the project and artistic expression of songwriter, producer Niklas Kramer.
Kramer launched Still Parade with debut single ‘Actors’ on 20th May 2013 and for a long while his identity was clouded by secrecy and mystique. This decision was taken with a view to letting the music alone do the talking. And that it did. ‘Actors’ was premiered via Earmilk and quickly went viral, being championed by tastemaker blogs on both sides of the Atlantic such as The 405, Pigeons & Planes and Indie Shuffle. As a result the single shot straight to the upper echelons of the Hype Machine popular chart, no mean feat for a debut single.
Whether this initial viral online hit for Still Parade was a blessing or a curse is up for discussion, however, the follow up was always going to be difficult feat. That said Kramer delivered extremely well received singles as well as the ‘Fields’ EP that saw Still Parade continue to build it’s following online amongst the tastemakers of the blogosphere.
During this period between the end of 2013 and 2014 the identity of Still Parade’s founder and driving creative force was gradually revealed as Niklas Kramer, a young producer and artist basing himself out of Germany’s creative hub of Berlin. It also saw Still Parade begin to play festivals and headline shows across Europe in cities including London, Paris, Amsterdam as well as their hometown of Berlin.
This period also saw Kramer become interested in experimenting with new recording techniques after receiving a tape recorder as a gift from his father. His previous output had all been recorded within fully equipped professional studios with experienced producers, resulting in a slick dream folk sound. However, only now was he realizing that he preferred the sound he was able to generate by himself within his own tiny Berlin apartment recording on that very tape machine.
Now armed with a collection of brand new songs Still Parade will be sure to leave behind the dream folk, yacht rock sound that became synonymous with Kramer’s early output. His debut album self recorded and produced with the use of his tape machine, is set for release in 2016, and it’s fair to say Kramer has successfully managed to harness influences from his all time heroes Todd Rundgren and Crosby, Stills & Nash.
In the process Kramer will emerge as not just a great songwriter, but also an extremely accomplished producer in his own right. That tape machine is looking like a wise gift!
More infos : https://www.facebook.com/stillparade/
Simian Ghost is an alternative pop act from Sandviken/Gävle, Sweden. It was initiated as a recording project by musician and visual artist Sebastian Arnström. His debut album, Infinite Traffic Everywhere, was received with blog praise and excellent reviews, topping the Critics Chart in Sweden and being voted Record Of The Year by the readers of Dagensskiva.se.
Simian Ghost performs live as a trio, consisting of Sebastian on vocals and electronics, his brother Erik Klinga on drums and Mathias Zachrisson on guitar, (both members of Light Vibes). They have already shared stages with the likes of Mount Kimbie, SBTRKT, Niki & The Dove and Tony Buck.
More infos : https://www.facebook.com/simianghost/
High Hazels are a band from Sheffield consisting of; James Leesley (Vocals), Scott Howes (Guitars), Paul Barlow (Bass) and Anthony Barlow (Drums).
Studies of young men navigating raw northern landscapes are nothing new in art. In film, the British New Wave gave us Vic Brown stalking the edge of a bleak estate in ‘A Kind of Loving’, Billy Fisher skulking home from a missed midnight train in Billy Liar and Colin Smith watching his dreams disappear down a prefab drain in ‘The Loneliness of a Long Distance Runner’. In song, northern misery was spun into gold in the shadow of Ewan MacColl’s factory wall, by the empty milk bottle on Peter Noone’s doorstep and in the rain logged gutters of Morrissey’s humdrum town.
Generations on, the northern knack of turning out mordant wit and winsome charm has delivered the current sound of the Sheffield outer ring road, High Hazels, and their first release ‘Hearts are Breaking’ on Heist or Hit.
Growing up in Handsworth, in the close streets backing onto Orgreave, the band are too young for battle hymns and are more attuned, lyrically, to the pastoral sweep of coke heaps made meadowland and snatched last kisses under nodding street lamps. They have been together since school, brothers Paul and Anthony on bass and drums, James singing and Scott on guitar. On stage, they resemble the end of the family line in northern boy groups: groups who horde priceless guitars but can’t afford the bus fare home, groups who rehearse dry George Harrison barbs in the bathroom mirror, groups who dress in boys’ brigade chic, in thrall to the boys of yesterday – The Quarrymen, The Pale Fountains, The Smiths.
The sound of High Hazels is the sound of nostalgia chiselled from vintage gear. In the grand tradition of enigmatic, bird boned guitar fetisheurs such as Marr, Reilly and Ryder-Jones, Scott Howes stands stage right dosing bruised souls with the medicine of minor chords, sounding the depths of the loneliest heart with waves of tender reverb.
A second guitar and a sad voice singing out from the boards without stage school theatrics or lad rock tics, freights the songs with an honesty and a yearning that carries them aloft long enough for the spell to work. The magic might even be in the fact that the band don’t know where the magic resides. James Leesley, stepping up behind Tim Buckley and Billy Fury, may look like the tea lad but his voice channels the strident tone of the Greenwich Village folkie and the plaintive croon of the jukebox balladeer.
These are boys from the monochrome set, crying out for a Les Chadwick bombsite portrait while their hair still looks alright. These are boys without the tiresome impediments of the college band. They aren’t interested in paddling in the intellectual shallows. They own chest waders and read the Angling Times, they go to their nans for Sunday dinner on a Wednesday, they drink tap water and only when they need to take a tablet.
For years, the only cultural shrine in Handsworth was the Ballifield semi where Ken Patten recorded The Future and Pulp in his Studio Electrophonique while his wife made the brews downstairs. A few streets over, a new story gathers pace, guitars chime in back bedrooms and, in terminus bus shelters, cold hearts start to thaw.
More infos : https://www.facebook.com/HighHazels/
Northern American should be Los Angeles’ most glamorous new band. This is a group whose first live outing saw them provide the soundtrack whilst models walked the catwalk at a local fashion show. Step outside the band’s Chinatown studio and you’ll find yourself on the set of Rush Hour or any other Hollywood blockbuster. But in Northern American’s world, not everything is black or white.
Like many California dreamers before them, Northern American’s viewpoint from the Hollywood Hills has shaped the shimmering sound of debut album Modern Phenomena – the band’s highly-evolved, and anticipated, follow up to their early, self-released Happiness Hungover EP – whilst the band’s panoramic vibe features in the video for album track ‘Elysian’ which moves seamlessly from moonlit monochrome to pastel hues of the SoCal sun.
More infos : https://www.facebook.com/NorthernAmerican/
Sea Moya are a psychedelic beat outfit, emerging from in between the shipping containers of a German Harbour. Creating a wild and diverse journey, the Sea Moya sound is a collage of funk, afrobeat, krautrock and modern electronica.
Passing their ideas through a chaotic system of wires, various instruments, effect pedals and analog recording gear into the computer, where it all gets mangled, sliced up and put back together again, it still sounds human, or at least something like that.
Heavily processed vocals and floating synth lines are blended with organic bass and drums in the same way Sea Moya’s diverse influences of modern artists like Sinkane and Toro Y Moi merge with the music of 70s idols like Can and William Onyeabor. Putting all of that together, they formulate the band’s self produced DIY sound.
More infos : https://www.facebook.com/seamoyaband/