Siblings - Colours

I’ve sung the praises for Songs From A Room a few times on Soundboard but let it be known the most recent edition last Friday was both the best I’ve ever attended and played at. The Sofar Birmingham crew really made a wonderful evening; the atmosphere was so warm and I felt like I left with a whole bunch of new friends.

Back to the music! Tonight I bring you a four-piece band from Derbyshire, England, whom I had the delight of sharing the stage with on Friday. Siblings was the opening band and was an uplifting start to the night. Their harmonies were so tight; I’m always impressed by guys who can harmonise well and these four were simply stunning.

This is their fabulous brand new single, Colours. Let it brighten your night.

- Rosie

Forestears - Against The Floor

Under-the-radar band feature…

In a stuffy, over-crowded basement in Bristol, I attended what I now count as one of my favourite gigs in years. Glowing with more fairy lights than Christmas, Songs From A Room was showcasing its first ever South-West England show.

An unusually large band with all kinds of instrumental jiggery-pokery headlined the evening; Forestears, a six-piece from Brighton, managed to just about squeeze themselves into the living room’s make-shift stage space, with little room to swing a kitten.
I really couldn’t have expected what came from them. The frontman, Elliot Ellison, produces songs with an impressively solid, mature sound beyond his years. A third of Forestears is brass, which coats the sound with a sleek, classic quality that stunned everyone in that Bristol basement. Also, I’m a sucker for band-mates who unexpectedly join in for a choral drone. They simply can’t do wrong in my eyes… ears.

This was a stripped-down set for Forestears in an unfamiliarly intimate atmosphere, but they thrived under the pressure and delivered an exceptional performance that had people woop-ing and smiling throughout. You can hear what they thought of their first Sofar experience in our interview with them, here! 
I couldn’t wait to catch their next gig at Mr Wolf’s in Bristol where they would be playing a full set, amps and FX pedals at the ready! This time the vibe was completely different but the lively Bristol crowd was just as supportive as the cross-legged one at Sofar. The room was totally electric with people dancing to the drums and bouncing to the pumps of the trumpet.

Against The Floor is from their more subdued EP that has been playing round and round and round in my car stereo since November and I’m still not tired of it.

You can find more of their tracks, including the full Against The Floor EP, on their Soundcloud.

Don’t forget to watch our interview with Elliot, Dale and Chris from Forestears, right after this post!

- Rosie

Goodnight Lenin - Tiny Moon

I had the sublime pleasure of sharing gigs with some brilliant musicians this weekend. I spent Saturday night in the living room of a small semi-detached house in Oxford, where the performance space was so intimate I was almost sitting in their laps.

The show was Oxford’s edition of the acclaimed live music organisation, Songs From a Room (aka Sofar). By far, the band I fell for the hardest was a brummy five-piece call Goodnight Lenin. There’s no-one who appreciates a good bit of harmonising more than me and good golly I got my fill! If you enjoy Simon & Garfunkel then you can fill your boots with these guys.

Tiny Moon recently had its debut play on Kerrang! Radio, of all places! I love the delicacy of it. I hope they go far, and soon!

- Rosie

The Staves - Facing West

Maybe it’s the competitive musician or the jealous girl in me (likely a combination of both) that makes it very, very hard for me to enjoy other girls’ song-writing, especially of the folk genre. Just call me bitter. However, I was introduced to The Staves by a friend at an evening of Songs From A Room a couple of years ago and as I watched and listened in speechless awe, I felt no jealousy; only love.

The Staves are three sisters from England who have the purest voices that merge and sway together delicately like the flow of a river. This is taken from their beautiful three-track Facing West EP, which I find echoes the grounded song-writing of Laura Marling with the flawless carry of Eva Cassidy’s voice.

The chorus can bring me to the edge of tears; it must be the lover in me.

- Rosie