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    We send out a mail most weeks, usually on a Monday evening containing new news and reminders.  If there is no news, we don’t bother you :)

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  • Under the Spotlight : Dog Fashion Disco and Psychostick

     Under the Spotlight : Dog Fashion Disco & Psychostickdfdposter

    There’s two-fold purpose in being a promoter.
    (1) Bringing bands people want to see – i.e. existing fans of the band can see them in their hometown
    (2) Introducing new fans to cool bands.

    If you know DFD or Psychostick you probably already have tickets or are intending on purchasing tickets (I hope…) if you don’t, then read on – let’s get to know them.

    So – who are Dog Fashion Disco?

    Dog Fashion Disco are an avant-garde metal band from Maryland.dfd band
    They released 6 albums before splitting up in 2007. They reformed with a crowd-funded album (‘Sweet Nothings’) which released the $85,000 target really quickly and decided to use that to “come back” properly and are doing a new album ‘Ad Nauseum’ as a follow up (out Oct 2nd).

    How come I don’t know them?

    They’ve done UK shows before, largely festivals, but think this is their first time up here. They’ve not been over so often so they’re not the sort of band that’s easy to stumble upon.
    They do have a large cult following, however, unsurprisingly this show (and others in the UK) are selling well.

    So, 6 albums – then 2 since they came back… what should I check out first?

    The track ‘Albino Rhino‘ is a crowd favourite at shows. We also like ‘War Party’
    Or why not check out the title track from ‘Ad Nauseum‘ (click song titles for links!)

    band_bathroom_7You seem to be making a big deal out of the support band, Psychostick, why?

    Because they’re awesome.

    Could you be more specific? Who are they? What are they? Why are they?

    They are a comedy metal band from Arizona. Humorcore they call their genre. (Damn Americans can’t spell ‘humour’).
    They’ve got 4 albums, this will be their first UK tour.
    Most of their tracks are original tracks, but they do have a couple of parodies including ‘Numbers (I can only count to 4)‘ (guess which Drowning Pool song that parodies)

    4 albums – OK – so what should I check out?

    They’re probably most famous for ‘Beer is Good‘ – but we love the ‘Revenge of the Vengeance’ album – the whole thing, picking a favourite is like picking which of my children is the favourite. If I had children. Which I don’t. I hope.
    OK. OK. We think you might like ‘Obey the Beard‘. That’s the first Psychostick song I heard and is actually why I booked them. That song. Make a note of it, it might come up in pub quizzes. Or, maybe, I think I get super feels from ‘Blue Screen‘ – it’s emotional. Plus ‘Bruce Campbell‘ is pretty funny. Not sure if Bruce sees it that way.

    OK, OK. So you really think I’m going to enjoy this show?

    Yes.
    But then, I would say that I guess. If you like something that’s a bit different. Like heavy music. Like a laugh. Then, you know – it’s worth checking out.

    Hmm, could I not just catch them next time?

    First time in Newcastle for Dog Fashion Disco. First time in the UK for Psyschostick – we got a Sunday night so you don’t have to rush from work – and we’ll be finished in good time for your last bus.
    Who knows if there’ll be a next time and if the set up will be so favourable.

    OK, OK, when is it?

    September 13th.
    The Cluny
    Advance tickets from The Cluny or www.seetickets.com
    Got it? Good.


  • Two New Gig Announcements…

    …next Tuesday at 10am

    It’s been quiet from us for new announcements (though click here to see some of the great stuff we’ve coming up) but we have TWO new shows to announce on September 1st at 10am, they’ll also be immediately on sale.

    We can’t really say too much above that, except one is in Think Tank and the other in The Cluny and we expect both shows to do well.

    We also have another show to announce later in September and have a couple of others in the pipeline.

    We’ll be setting up our media to auto-update at that time, but we know what it’s like getting on line sometimes, so we’ll also be sending out our mailshot at 10am on September 1st, so you get the announcements as they happen direct to your inbox.

    If you’re not yet on our mailing list – join here – we usually send out one a week – and if it’s a quiet week, we don’t bother you.

    Signing up is the best way to make sure you never miss a gig announcement.


  • Cluny listed as one of UK’s top venues

    A post on gigwise of the best UK venues has returned The Cluny amongst their very best.

    You can see their list here.

    They describe it as a “Hidden gem” (no disagreements here) and “…one of the best bars in the world” (we haven’t drank in every bar in the world yet : but we’re working on it)

    We also agree it’s one of our favourite venues to work with in Newcastle (along with Think Tank and The Globe, of course) and we’ve hosted many great shows and looking forward to many more.

    While we’re here, our announced upcoming shows in The Cluny are…

    July 18th : The Cureheads + Lizzie and the Banshees
    September 13th : Dog Fashion Disco + Psychostick
    October 15th : Hanzel und Gretyl + Seraph Sin

    Tickets for all available from Seetickets.com , Reflex Record – or why not pop to The Cluny, have a beer and a burger (or cider and chilli, or Craft Lager and Hot Dog) and buy tickets over the bar.


  • Psychostick Want To Stalk “Bruce Campbell”

    Comedy metal band Psychostick has released an official music video for their tribute to, “…the greatest actor ever known: Bruce Campbell.” The video shows vocalist Rob Kersey doing all sorts of fun activities with “Bruce Campbell”, all while extolling the various roles the actor has portrayed. Things start to get a little weird towards the end, entering the realm of stalker territory. However, I think Bruce can handle himself, especially if he’s even remotely close to being like Ash in the “Ash vs Evil Dead” trailer that premiered yesterday!

    Psychostick are doing their first UK tour later this year, this includes a show for us in Newcastle with Dog Fashion Disco at The Cluny on September 13th : you can get tickets here
    .


  • Eric Martin has message for UK Fans

    Eric Martin has given a little shout out and message to his Facebook fans about the forthcoming UK tour – you can see the video here.

    If you read some of the comments, Eric has also invited Dox from Rusted Hero to learn a couple of his songs to join him!  This is really shaping up to be a very special night, which I’m sure will make up for the immigration fiasco last December.

    Support is from Simon Kaviani and Rusted Hero doing a special acoustic set.

    The Newcastle show is at Think Tank on August 15th.  If you need tickets you can get them here. Or alternatively from Reflex Records.

    Just a reminder if you had tickets from last December they are still valid and will be honored.

    It’s getting exciting :)


  • Support Announcement : Seraph Sin join Hanzel Und Gretyl

    Glasgow Industrial-Metal combo Seraph Sin have been confirmed to be playing as support act to Hanzel Und Gretyl at The Cluny in Newcastle on October 15th.

    Their music crosses many genres with intricate melodies, bitter-sweet then vicious vocals, conveying a brutal honesty against a backdrop of visceral guitars and punctuated by electronic keyboards and an orchestra all to the pounding sound of bone shattering drums which is matched only by their live shows in its ferocity and unyielding nature.

    Seraph Sin’s first official release “Up On High” has been produced and recorded by the highly regarded Rico, known for his influential solo work and his collaborations with Gary Numan and Tricky. Now working with Seraph Sin on their first EP, he describes first single Up On high as a track that “isn’t here to make friends… It’s f*****g vicious.”

    The video, directed by BAFTA Award winner Alan C McLaughlin, is now available at the bottom of this page.

    I’m sure you’ll give the band a warm welcome.  Click here for Tickets.


  • Lockdown Rock Night Turns 1 : Birthday Party

    A year ago we helped launch a new rock and metal night in Newcastle, Lockdown.  The aim was to help fill a gap caused by the closure of Legends (where we’d previously run nights) and bring Rock back to Friday night dancefloors.

    We tend not to keep Lockdown updates on this site, as the initial success prompted us to create a separate website (available here) – but we wanted to spread the news about birthday celebrations.

    So, this Friday 10th July at The Globe on Railway Street we have the first birthday of Lockdown :)

    To celebrate, we’ll bring you the same great mix of rock and metal music but a few extras…

    First off : cake!  We’ve just collected a special cake to help mark the occasion and we’ll be dishing out frfireee pieces around midnight.

    But – we kinda wanted a more creative way to light the cake – so we booked a fire dancer.

    Phoenix Fire Arts (Pictured) will be on hand to light the candles.  OK, we’re not just bringing her to light the cake, she’ll also be showing off her skills with a special fire show just before midnight.  Her performances are stunning and this is of course included in the entry fee.

    The entry fee, well, no change – £4 before 11.30pm or £5 after – however if you’re on the guestlist then entry is £3.  To get on the guestlist simply write your name on the facebook event wall >>> available here.

    Thank you all for your support so far :)


  • Why is your band not playing my city?

    bandI’ve been mulling writing blog style posts about the music industry for a while – and there’s a topic that often frustrates me that I wanted to write about….

    We’ve all seen it.
    Bands announce tour dates and there’s always someone who is “Band!!! Y U no play my city?”
    Sometimes, you even get an added line “no band ever plays here” – which is sometimes a bit dramatic (unless you live out in the sticks and can surely understand the lack of touring bands round you) but I know first hand it can be frustrating keep seeing bands you like announce dates and none of which are that near you.

    That is how we got into promotion in the first place. We’ll come to that in a bit.

    First up, unless the band is doing their own booking (they tend not to) bands don’t usually get a lot of say in where they play. Sure, they might be able to approach their agent and give a preference of a city or venue they might like to play (or a preference of city or venue they might prefer not to play, if there’s been previous bad experiences with venues and/or promoters) but usually this is completed by an agent who has to sort out the most sensible route to drive around the country, hitting the places likely to enable them to play to as many people as possible.

    Let’s put it into simple terms. You want to go to some bars to have some drinks and see your friends. Bar A has 20 of your friends, Bar B has 12 of your friends, Bar C has 10 of your friends, Bar D has 10 of your friends and Bar E has 5 of your friends, but they’re shouting pretty loud for you to see them as they’ve not seen you in a while.
    You can go to 3 bars. Which 3 do you choose? A and B make most sense as you can see 32 of your friends in these two bars. If you omit bar E then these friends will shout at you for missing them AGAIN but if you choose to see them you miss out on 20 of your friends from C or D. Which ever you choose from C or D the other will be unhappy.
    There is no logical way you can do this and keep everyone happy.
    So you do A, B and C and hope some of your friends from D and E come to see you.
    Perhaps next time out you do A, B and D
    Maybe at some point in the future you have time to do 4 bars, or maybe one time fate will allow you to do all 5 – but perhaps by the time you can do all 5, you have more friends and now people in bars F, G and H all want to see you – and while you’d love to hang out with them all you have family to go home to, or only so much money to drink in bars (and even with people buying you drinks there’s still other expenses) and so on and so forth.

    In essence, that’s pretty much it – that there’s only a limited time available to do tours because of other commitments, expenses, etc. so it’s all a case of trying to do the best with what is available and that sometimes means that your city is missed and that you are Bar C and they’re going to Bar D this time – and if you are constantly being missed then you’re possibly Bar F or G (or Z!).

    But, don’t despair too much – there’s plenty of things you can do.

    Anyway.
    My first suggestion is that the UK is a small country and a lot of places are closer than you think. (For international readers, I have no idea on your size or infastructure) trains aren’t actually that expensive if you can book in advance – and if you have enough mates then a minibus trip can work out OK. I know this is a cost upon a cost, but yeah – it’s not difficult to co-ordinate a cheap hotel deal and a good deal on train tickets.

    You’re now going to say : I don’t want to travel to gigs, I just want bands I like in my hometown.

    So, my next suggestion. It’s simple.
    Check your local gig guides and venues for what bands they DO have. Read up on some of the bands and happen there will be something similar to your interests, possibly in a band you’d never heard of : go to that.
    Maybe they’ll suck, maybe they’ll be brilliant but it’s got to be better than sitting wishing bands would play and the heads through the door shows there’s a demand for that style of band. If it looks like the show did well, speak to the venue or promoter afterwards with your suggestions of who you’d like to see that’s similar.
    Mind, granted – there has to be sense in your wish. Consider that plenty of people tell venues and promoters who they should book and most suggestions are, well, unsuitable. But, “Hey, this gig did well – there’s this band X who have a new album out later this year : do you think they could play here on the tour there’s clearly a demand for this sort of music” well, it can work. Though, don’t be too disappointed if it doesn’t, but really – if I’m putting bands on of a certain genre and they do well then I’m more likely to book similar bands. It’s not always as black and white, mind, but if a lot of people in a certain city like a certain style of band it makes sense for bands to try to play there and makes sense for promoters to try to put them on.

    Try is a very appropriate word, because there are so many factors. There’s a whole bunch of bands we’ve tried to get and logistics didn’t make sense for them and there’s been a whole bunch of bands contact us who we couldn’t help for assorted reasons.
    But certainly, the odds of booking certain types of show increase when similar shows have done well.

    Or. You could be in a situation like I was in when I started promoting. RFTK was a merger of individuals – I personally represent the F, which stood for Floorshow Promotions which I started in 2005 booking Gothic bands at first and then some more industrial acts later. At the time, there weren’t really any of the Gothic or Industrial bands playing Newcastle – well – apart from Bauhaus and The Cult – so there wasn’t a local promoter to bug to put on the bands I wanted, so I started booking them myself.

    If that is the situation you’re in, it’s probably a lot trickier to persuade a promoter to start booking the sort of shows you like. But possible, it’s all just a case of proving there’s a market.

    I could talk about my experiences for hours but that would distract largely from the point I’m trying to make. Perhaps if this blog post is popular I can do another one another time and talk about these. I could also try to expand on what does go into putting a tour together, but not today.
    But, my points are as thus…

    (1) It’s not possible for a band to announce a tour and everyone be happy, moaning at them about it isn’t going to be able to change much
    (2) Given the time and effort it takes to put together a tour it’s a kick in the teeth to them for you to immediately rubbish it.
    (3) I know it’s frustrating when your city is missed, but try to work out which dates you could make and plot a road trip – the UK isn’t a big country and transport is quite good.
    (4) If a band you like is playing your city – make an extra effort to try and get there.
    (5) And if the bands you like aren’t, look at assorted listings as there’s bound to be bands you don’t know that you will like – showing there’s a demand for certain genre’s increases the likelihood similar bands will play.
    (6) Bugging your local promoter doesn’t magically make shows appear in your city, but if you turnout for a similar show and have a suggestion you think would work well, you’re no further behind if you raise it with them.

    Ooh, while you’re here – check out our listings 😉

    Kev Morris
    RFTK Promotions


  • Dog Fashion Disco + Psychostick Tour

    dfdposterSome excellent news of a great tour hitting The Cluny in Newcastle on September 13th.

    Dubbed as ‘The Really Ugly Americans Tour’ : we welcome both Dog Fashion Disco and Psychostick to The Cluny.

    DFD are an excellent avant-garde metal band who were most active during 1995-2007 : after a couple of reunion shows, they came back properly in 2013 with crowd-funded album ‘Sweet Nothing’.  Owing to the success of that album, they’ve been busy touring and writing and are due to release another album, ‘Ad Nauseum’, later this month.

    They rarely tour in the UK so it’s a great time to see them, if you don’t know their music – check them out here

    Psychostick have definitely excited a few as they come to the UK even less! Describing themselves as ‘humourcore’ – they have 4 albums which have spawned such greatness as ‘Obey the Beard’, ‘Beer!’, parodies of Drowning Pool and a cover of ‘Danger Zone’.  Amongst others.   You can check them out here.

    Tickets are available now – click here to grab them from seetickets.com – or alternatively they are available from Reflex Records.  They’re already selling very well.