Club Integral London presents…

The Provincials

Manu Louis

at Iklectic Arts, London Waterloo, Thursday 23rd January 2020, starting 8pm

cost £10/7.50 -tickets on the door

The Provincials

are a dark folk duo comprising Polly Perry (formerly of Polly and the Billets Doux), and author and guitarist Seb Hunter. They have just released their second, highly acclaimed album The Dark Ages.Drawing on English folk, experimental rock and ambient music they have created a sound that shifts through the gears across the album, recalling at different times Polly Harvey, Bert Jansch, Popul Vuh and Nick Drake.”Drawing from jazz, rock and folk Provincials cast a spell, conjuring a resonant, hypnotic soundworld recalling Pentangle, These New Puritans, Talk Talk and David Lynch’s film soundtracks.”

Folk Radio

“Meandering along a path that stretches from the Norman church dotted shingly shoreline of the southeast coast of Romney to a revenge-soaked Iberia, The Provincials conjure up a lamentable present. Perhaps we are indeed doomed. Perhaps these are the end days or the darkness before the light. Whatever the truth, this diaphanous duo has articulated such augurs with a gauze-y, beautiful veneer worth savouring and improved no end since their last album.”

David Valvona, Monolith Cocktail

Manu Louis

Manu Louis

A review of Manu Louis’ latest album “Cream Machine”

“Sometimes, the beauty of art lies within the things you can’t grip or comprehend. Sometimes, music which plays with both familiar elements and progressive, experimental ideas can reach this special beauty with the tensions those two contrasts provide.

It’s kind of a struggle sometimes, but if the artist can strike the right balance, there is symbiosis to achieve. Belgian-born and now Berlin-resident Manu Louis is such an artist. ” Everything is noise (U.K.)

‘Kermesse Machine’ is a mountain of plastic glasses in the streets the morning after, a tropical digital marching band, a guy giving all he’s got at Karaoke because there’s nowhere left to sing, a gypsy virtuoso playing synth with a trumpet sound.Since 2015, he has performed solo more than 80 times everywhere in Europe and Asia accompanied by a crowd of electronic instruments and video projections.Manu also composes and performs for/with the 30-piece Orchestra Vivo and Fanfares. His past projects include Funk Sinatra and The Music for Gardens.

Pete Um, The Nature Centre, Fourth Page

Friday 29th November Iklectic Arts Waterloo London SE1

starts 8pm cost £10/7.5

Pete Um

Sectionable Cambridge pop-surrealist Pete Um is a world unto himself but also a standard-bearer for the kind of heroic DIY befuddlement and unflinching self-analysis that Deep Freeze Mice, Mick Hobbs, Robert Storey and the Homosexuals minted. Um’s sprawling catalogue is a beast that can’t be tamed or reasoned with, but it’s endlessly rewarding: time and time again he nails that going-mad-in-the-potting-shed-ness that is the historic, and perhaps eternal, English condition – what it is, indeed, to be a little bit ‘Fucked In The Head’ (as the title of one of the songs here has it). Where so much contemporary stuff in this vein sounds hopelessly mannered and contrived and untouched by actual real-world experience of being on the outside of ANYTHING, As You Were sounds fully free and unforced, hopelessly alienated from the thing we call society and GLAD of it, and even at its most demented and disorderly your man sounds like he’s wrenching everything he possibly can out of his primitive keyboard-and-mic set-up cos it’s all he’s bloody well got, not cos he’s self-consciously imposing limitations on himself. While the influence of 80s UK squat-whimsy looms large, we’re reminded too of the synth-fuelled early-noughts art-spazz of the The Soft Pink Truth and Safety Scissors, and, more than anything or one, R. Stevie Moore – unexpectedly powerful and unforgettable songs emerging unexpectedly out of awkward, enervating loops and the more obviously pranky vignettes. ‘The Director’ is my song of the year so far, NO WORD OF A LIE: a warped, wistful sequel to Patrick Selinger’s ‘Businessman’. And ‘Ed Sheeran’ is a casual takedown of the wee guitar-slinging eunuch, sure, but it’s also a long hard truthful stare at the plight of a more marginal musician: “When I was a kiddie / I wanted to be a star / I play in local venues / I guess I didn’t get that far / I don’t want no fame / It ain’t strictly pleasure / but I still gotta do it…”

“I am in danger of becoming a self-styled ‘Um Evangelist’, telling anyone who will listen about Cambridge’s Don Van Vliet, the East Anglian Brian Wilson.” Connor Brown, Nervous Conditions.

The Nature Centre

Birmingham-based The Nature Centre creates three-minute pop songs, stuffed with ideas like a suitcase packed too late. The band plays like nobody is watching, quoting freely from flowery psych, faded art rock cassettes, scratchy punk and arena weirdos. Expect banjos, bleeps and skronky rhythms, woven through tunes that bring to mind The Slits, Family Fodder and the best bits of Brum.

” …wonderfully discordant, complex and slightly absurd.” Nordic Music review

“…The kind of fololoppy pop that Syd Barrett might make if he headed up a harmony girl group under the influence.” Unorthodox Paradox

Breakfast Time

Nordic Music Review

Fourth Page

are Charlie Beresford – guitar and voice, Carolyn Hume – piano/keyboards, Peter Marsh – bass, and Paul May – drums. Formed in 2010 almost by accident, their stretched, atmospheric and entirely improvised songs have drawn comparisons to Schubert, David Sylvian, Talk Talk, Patty Waters and John Martyn. After a break of some four years to work on other projects, the band are back together, this time with a more plugged in format. A fourth Fourth Page album is planned for 2017.

‘Fourth Page takes improvised music to exciting places it hasn’t really been before’ – All About Jazz

“I thought it was perhaps the sort of song cycle Schubert might have written if he’d been around today. The anguish of Winterreise with its chinks of light…” – Fiona Talkington, Late Junction, BBC Radio 3