Acerbic post-punk outfit Half Man Half Biscuit formed in Birkenhead in 1984, and revolve around the partnership of singer/guitarist Nigel Blackwell and bassist Neil Crossley. The group have accrued a cult following over the span of 14 albums, as much for their irreverent takes on small-town England as for their wry social commentary. When you're described as "the greatest English folk band since The Clash," you know you're doing something right. When John Peel describes you as "a national treasure", your cult status is confirmed.
The langurous songs of Bill Ryder-Jones are located at the point where introspection and redemption meet, although his lyrical themes suggest resolution is not always guaranteed. Ryder-Jones has mastered a distinct and personal mood music, executed with a studio deftness and an intimacy in his vocal delivery - the sound of someone sharing their experiences while offering the listener a space to be themselves. Singer, songwriter, composer, producer, his work is both critically acclaimed and adored by fans.
Andrew PM Hunt is an acclaimed musician and producer, one of the strongest currents flowing through this region’s music scene. Whether it is as his solo project, Dialect, or through a collaboration, his textured and experimental work draws on a number of influences. Electronic, acoustic, orchestral, is it not the style that defies the artist but the desire for creativity.
Forest Swords is electronic producer and artist Matthew Barnes, born in Birkenhead. Barnes is known for rewiring sounds into innovative electronic worlds, most recently on the acclaimed 'Compassion' album. He recently expanded into film scoring, composing the music for the Sundance winning Netflix documentary 'Ghosts Of Sugar Land'. Forest Swords also collaborated on an audio installation at Future Yard festival in 2019, which is sampled throughout this piece. Working alongside artists from The Kazimier, Barnes hosted PYLON, a structure of cymbals and lights that was performed using programmed electronics and responded to the environment.
Hailing from Wirral and synonymous with Liverpool’s music scene, Louisa Roach’s band She Drew The Gun is ambitious, melodic, psych pop with a political edge and has captured the ear of many and saw the band being crowned the winner of Glastonbury’s coveted emerging talent competition in 2016. Being compared to contemporary poets such as Kate Tempest, her new music sees her take the vocal range of the Yeah Yeah Yeahs’ Karen O, to the punk angst of Jehnny Beth.