SEventh Wave Following on from the inaugural The Seventh Wave Festival of electronic music late in 2016, Festival No.2 took place over 4 days and a series of events celebrating classic and contemporary electronica. Over the weekend a procession of artists performed, talked, and taught fans of electronic music here in Birmingham.


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Wrangler Tonight at The Flapper we have a journey into the heart of the machine with Wrangler (the group not the denim manufacturers) a modern day experimental electronic supergroup of the analog kind in its current form since in 2013 and formed by Stephen Mallinder (Cabaret Voltaire), Phil Winter (Tunng) and Ben Edwards aka Benge (Music Producer, Memetune Record label owner, Solo Artist, Synth collector and John Foxx collaborator et al) as part of a mini tour taking in four dates in Birmingham, Glasgow Sheffield and London.


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Among the Echoes It’s Saturday 15th March, and downstairs in the Flapper, it’s a sell out crowd, with an assembled audience from across the UK (and Sweden too!) for the “Ides of March” event (Beware of Julius Caesar references…) organised by Synthetic City Promotions (i.e. Ian Wall/Johnny Normal) with appearances by 5 electronic artists from around the country.


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Tom Copson It might have been distinctly uninspiring outside The Flapper tonight (unseasonably nippy and just a trifle moist) but deep in the bowels of this legendary Birmingham boozer and gig venue Patrick Duff (for newcomers yes, he was the lead singer of critically acclaimed late 90s alt rock band Strangelove) is once again delivering the sort of set that makes you glad you’ve got ears. If that sounds a little over dramatic just go and see him first (by the way he's supporting The Blue Aeroplanes on their June tour).


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Romans 31 artists, 7 venues, one aim... to raise loadsa cash, dosh, wonga... call it what you will... for (cue 70’s DJ voice) charidee. Yep, some of Birmingham’s finest gave up their Saturday to physically and metaphorically rattle the ol’ tin, giving warm hearted punters the chance to catch up with a pretty dazzling range of genres... everything from the gentle and acoustic to the LOUD AND THRASHY.


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The Go! Team On the eve of their UK tour we caught up with Screaming Al from Exeter based hardcore legends in the making The Computers to talk facial hair, the rising price of Quorn and how they got Rocket From The Crypt’s Speedo to record their debut album. Strap yourself in, it’s gonna get messy...


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The Go! Team On the eve of their UK tour we caught up with Screaming Al from Exeter based hardcore legends in the making The Computers to talk facial hair, the rising price of Quorn and how they got Rocket From The Crypt’s Speedo to record their debut album. Strap yourself in, it’s gonna get messy...


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My Jerusalem The first gig of the year is always a bit of a struggle. Having consumed my own bodyweight in dead poultry, Bailey’s, Port, crates of chocolate and various sacks of salted snacks it’s frankly a miracle that I’m still alive.


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Egyptian Hip Hop Nearly Christmas...ho ho ho. What do you want from Santa? I’m after an antique silver pocket watch, a nice silk cravat and maybe a (highly illegal) sword stick since you’re asking. I’m going through a bit of a retro phase at the moment. Oh for the days of tea dances, gentlemen who doffed their caps and coal powered gramophones eh...


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Islet After last night’s goth fest with O. Children this was another much anticipated gig thanks to the presence of the frankly genre defying Islet. Kicking off proceedings though it’s This Is Sinister. It took me a couple of tracks to get into them. There’s a kind of a psych math rock alt country thing going on. Hmmmm... maybe they should be called ‘This Is Puzzling’. I’m not sure how long they’ve been going but I got the sense that perhaps they’re still developing the sound of the band too. That’s not to say that they weren’t accomplished. In fact listening to each one of them in isolation (I can do that you know... I’m, like a bat) they’re clearly all pretty good musicians. And when it all gelled it came together well too, like on one of the standout tracks of the set, Caliba (a rocking number with shades off At The Drive In). I’ve seen bands at this sort of stage before, with plenty of ambition and a real willingness to experiment, and they can go on to do great things. One’s to watch.


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O. Children I was particularly looking forward to tonight’s gig. And not just because I was intrigued to see how Tobi, O. Children’s vertically unchallenged lead singer, would get on with the low ceilinged Flapper basement. Nope. I was looking forward to a bit of misery (I do love a bit of misery) courtesy of the band’s particularly fine brand of doomy indie goth.


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Pulled Apart By Horses As a venue, The Flapper has to be one of my favourites; it's small, dark and hovers just the right side of not being a total shithole! The sound isn't usually unnecessarily loud and has just the right level of intimacy. Not a full on in your face assault, but a more feeling of warmth as you enter the dimly lit dungeon. At least these were my prior thoughts before heading into day two of this three day mini music festival, Off The Cuff.


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William Control Sweat, love and rock n’roll. Tonight’s gig, headlined by a certain William Control (aka Wil from Seattle Alt Rock legends Aiden), had it all.


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