Patawawa are unique in their nature as an electronic trio, who blend beats to pump blood with glittered guitar riffs and basslines that bite. Featuring Sam Wilmot, Rory Lovatt, and Beth Garrett, the three-piece have crafted a sound that stays true to the neon roots of their funk and disco inspirations but dressed with a cheeky flair that makes it all their own.
Picked by NME as ‘Ones to Watch in 2018’ before their debut EP had even been released, the band that originated from Matlock, have more than lived up to that promise. Having found fans in the likes of Huw Stephens, Tom Robinson and Lauren Laverne, they’ve been tipped by the Line of Best Fit, The Guardian, DIY & Clash and has seen them be selected to headline the Free Vibes event at Band On The Wall on Wednesday 13th March ahead of their London, Paris, New York, Matlock EP release which is out later this month.
Before then, Sam & Rory have put together an exclusive playlist for us with their inspirations behind Patawawa’s upcoming drop.
Sam’s Tracks –
Westside – Jarreau Vandal
I have a lot of Jarreau’s tunes on my playlist, for me, he just knows how to make a happy, upbeat, fun tunes with great production and often great vocal features!
Meant To Be – Hush Moss
Became a fan of this band a couple of years ago with their super smooth funk banger Clear and was also lucky enough to catch them live when we played ‘Smoked & Uncut’ Festival. Meant To Be is another smooth funk fiesta with excellent horns and percussion, a real earworm!
Grant Green – Mr Jukes Ft Charles Bradley
Bombay Bicycle Club are the band I have seen the most times ever live so when I learnt that Jack Steadman was doing a funk project I was stoked! Grant Green is such a powerful funk track with a brilliant melody for the chorus, unfortunately, it was one of the soul legend CharlesBradley‘s last ever recorded songs.
Lightenup – Parcels
Parcels always bring a groovy number to the table and Lightenup is no exception, it always puts me in a great mood and certainly does light me up! Caught them at Rough Trade in London late last year and they were unbelievably tight! Feel good vibes fo’ sho.
Cookin’ on 3 Burners – Real Life Baby
This tune just gets my feet moving every time, amazing brass in this song, just an ultimate feel-good track!
Rory’s Tracks –
It’s My House – Diana Ross
Just a perfect pop song! It never gets old!
Bicicleta – Marcos Valle
You can’t be in a bad mood when this is on.
How Good Is Your Game – Billy Paul
Billy‘s voice is something else and this song is definitely my favourite of his.
Feel The Music (Original 7 Inch Version) – Dreamflight
The Boston Goes To Disco compilation from Serge Gainsbourg was an incredible release last year and this was the top song for me.
Suddenly – Drugdealer
This song sounds like an old beach boys song at the start, then transforms and has a really nice piano heavy beat which is rate up my street.
Over the year, 2018 weened out a host of new acts that met the limelight. From Boy Azooga to Parcels, independent acts have blown-up the music scene and set their sights on the big-time. But what can come through in 2019? Of course we don’t know yet who are going to rise up from the depths of their rehearsal spaces and practice rooms but our MCRLive contributors have selected the next generation of acts that they can see appearing on your playlists over the next twelve months.
WORDS BY HANNAH TINKER
Their name comes from the “colour that disappeared” – the deep blue pigment that surfaced in the Egyptian period and vanished until it was rediscovered in the Roman Era – but be assured, EgyptianBlue aren’t going to disappear any time soon. The Southern four-piece have cropped up slotted in amongst the vinyls of record shops up and down the country, as well as featured on many a ‘top track of 2018’ list from BBC Radio6 to Piccadilly Records. Although still relatively unknown, they’re more than likely to break the mould in 2019 and be presented at some of your favourite venues.
FFO. Squid, Duds, Sorry.
WORDS BY JESSICA CAMPBELL
Think of the South of England and your mind will probably be drawn to the colourful stony beaches of Brighton, the White Cliffs that lead to more exotic places or the first right of passage as a rowdy 16-year-old, Newquay. But Portsmouth? It’s more than likely that you’d probably only recognise it as the place you’d pass through to get to Bestival (RIP). However, one band are about to change this – mainly hailing from these haunts comes the macabre Hotel Lux. Though a young band, the 5-piece provide gritty realism through their lyrics – case in point being smash single of 2018 ‘Daddy’ which focuses on the often overlooked seedy underbelly of every city, all which seem to possess a sense of familiarity for front-man Lewis which in turn will leave you wholly satisfied, if not with realistic world portrayed through their lyrics. If you like dark, punky music that your mum probably won’t get, these are your guys.
FFO. Lady Bird, Goat Girl, The Rhythm Method.
LAVA LA RUE
WORDS BY EMMA LANGFORD
Lava La Rue is a west-London rapper last year releasing ‘LAVALAND’ consisting of a few short tapes integrating soft vocals with the sounds of London showcasing her personal style. Earlier on in the year in June, she released her EP ‘Letra’ showing a more hip-hop infused, upbeat sound. The track ‘Widdit’ was a success, bagging her a show on the notorious YouTube channel ‘A Colors Show’, a platform promoting fresh talent. Lava La Rue is also the founder of the nine8collective, a London based music, and arts collective, promoting and collaborating the work of its artists and musicians. La Rue’s silky lyrics and distinctive sound have caught the attention of many listeners. She is one to look out for in 2019.
FFO.Biig Piig, Poppy Ajudha, Puma Blue
WORDS BY CRAIG HOPKINSON
32 Tens are a Warrington based indie rock band, are set to make a serious impact on the unsigned, emerging U.K. music scene in 2019. This awesome band is already receiving thousands of streams and playlist features on Spotify, are members of the quickly growing AWAL independent music community to distribute globally and have also played a tranche of gigs across the U.K. for the last eighteen months. Their music is an energetic blend of harmonic melody, intense, heavy drums, funky bass, and lead guitar solos and very dynamic lyrics. The intensity and passion really shine through with every song and performance and so these guys are definitely a band to watch out for next year.
FFO. The Snuts, Rascalton, Chappaqua Wrestling
WORDS BY JESSICA CAMPBELL
Listen to just 30 seconds of one of their songs or seeing their oversized art-rock cum new-romantic inspired attire and you’ll wonder whether what you’re listening to is from now, or some 20 years ago. Inhaling the somewhat ‘twisted’ society around them and exhaling glittering tracks like ‘No Need For A Curtain’, which explores a documentary based on prostitution in Leeds, Walt Disco are breathing a new and beautifully flamboyant life (far beyond their years) into the flourishing Glasgow music scene. Punk AF. Glamorously gothic, with elements of Bowie ringing clear (both in haunting stage prowess, to recorded sound) everything the quintet do catches the eye. Need a douse of something refreshing to fit with your new year revamp? Walt Disco have it all.
FFO. Crack Cloud, HMLTD, The Ninth Wave (and banging clothes).
WORDS BY JACK MCKEEVER
The London-based producer/DJ Imogen took the final quarter of 2018 by storm. She turned in a stonking hour mix for Rob Booth’s legendary Electronic Explorations series, and her impossibly murky breaks assault ‘Katla’ was a highlight of Mumdance’s ‘Shared Meanings’ mix CD. She takes severe techno as a starting point and splices into various grinding, wiggling forms, making tracks as likely to make one quiver as to bang fists. Early 2019 sees her appear in Brussels alongside Charlotte De Witte, and in June she’ll appear at the hallowed Junction2 Festival in her hometown. Here’s to hoping there’ll also be a load of seismic releases from her throughout the year.
WORDS BY RUSSELL HOPE
When you know you’re good you have to be incredibly good to back up that arrogance and cock-sureness of knowing how good you are and then you come across those artists that do what they do with humble confidence and appreciation of where they are and where they are going in their career. Boy Azooga is the latter and the captain of the ship (Davey Newington) has the full respect of those who have listened to his debut album ‘1, 2, Kung Fu’. Through the full variety, ranging from the grit of ‘Loner Boogie’ to the sheer brilliance and beauty of ‘Jerry’. After witnessing the album live at Bluedot in the summer, you just know that the follow up to this album has the potential of being even better. I can thank Mary-Anne Hobbs from BBC Radio 6 for opening my ears to this one and after being live on there last month I’m sure Davey is thankful too.
FFO. The Orielles, Pip Blom, The Vryll Society
WORDS BY HANNAH TINKER
Make way for the act that stole the show in 2018’s festival scene: ConfidenceMan. If you’re a Disco fanatic, you’ll know of the icon that is RosinMurphy and her ability to immediately get the floor moving. Like the Disco Queen herself, the two-piece has faced audiences who didn’t know the ConfidenceMan title and left them proclaiming their excellence. Feel-good gets a re-boost with this group, they know exactly what to say to make it right and brighten any negativity. I for one am angling to see this pair at a festival in 2019, having heard that their spectacle of a show lets the euphoria run right up your spine. It’s Pop, it’s Disco, it’s Dance. It’s everything you need in 2019.
FFO. Methyl Ethel, Winston Surfshirt, Haiku Hands
WORDS BY SOPHIE BILLINGTON
This four-piece band of men in Liverpool offers a clean but heavy sound with a lot of smooth talking. With guitars and drums that take turns in the spotlight, Persian Hugs are a classic rock outfit that are simultaneously polite and gentlemanly yet wild and unruly. The lead, Henry Belcher, is the kind of man that you want to take home to meet your parents but not for very long. Every release has been a hit so far and Persian Hugs’ following is fast growing on Spotify due to the undeniable panache that comes across in the band’s deliverance of mature and thoughtful stories.
FFO. Sea Girls, Red Rum Club, Corella
WORDS BY RICHARD SAMUEL
Another Sky burst on to the scene in 2017 with their progressive indie rock, that has a real cinematic quality to it. Gluing together some real classic elements with a tangible rawness, sharp observant lyrics, dark yet uplifting and the distinct vocals of Catrin Vincent that are hauntingly beautiful. If you go deeper you will find ambient guitars layered upon penetrating bass lines and apprehensive beats. Think Radiohead meeting The xx but with added bite and you’ve got something that is thrillingly haunting. I also love the lyrics “Why worry ‘bout the weather or nuclear weapons when you can eat for free on a black card at Nandos?” on recent single ‘Chillers’, which show a band wanting to tackle big issues instead of singing about why their ex has broken their heart.
FFO. Sam Fender, Stereo Honey, Art School Girlfriend
WORDS BY JESSICA CAMPBELL
I’m going to go ahead and say it – Patawawa released the catchiest tune of 2018. Ever since monster-single ‘Patagonia’ dropped, the Matlock-based trio have gone from strength to strength playing up and down the country to packed out crowds at headline gigs and festivals alike and (not-so) rumours have it, a new EP is set to drop in the coming weeks. As new bop ‘Wires’ exhibits, Patawawa are showing no signs of stopping – taking their inherently Nu-Disco sound to new levels with Latin flavours sprinkled throughout. Hearing all this, I’m sure that you can imagine that no matter when you hear them, listening to Patawawa it’ll feel like you’ve been thrust back to the midst of the summer. And live? If you’re having a shit day, the three-piece will be sure to change that with beaming smiles as they bounce around the stage, filling any room with a contagious energy that doesn’t slow down for a second.
FFO. Parcels, Crazy P, Franc Moody
WORDS BY HANNAH TINKER
It’s rare nowadays that anyone doesn’t have a social media presence, let alone a music act aiming to rise up through the ranks. Meet black midi. A quick scan of their scarce social media pages shows they only post their gig listings and nothing else. Word-of-mouth has brought them an alert fan-base, each passing on the folklore of this newcomer with no online bearing. Clamouring for every scrap of information they can find, the BRITSAcademy graduates: blackmidi are in high demand. It’s a unique math-rock take on the independent acts floating around nowadays. As individual in their promotion as they are in their performance, go see for yourself at their twenty *almost* consecutive January and February 2019 tour dates.
Anticipation loomed as curious music fans gathered to await the funky sounds of London synth-pop collective Franc Moody. Arriving in Manchester off the back of a string of shows, initially supporting Friendly Fires followed by a run of festival appearances, the group are on fire at the moment. Fronted by Ned Franc and Jon Moody, they set out on their first UK headline tour- hoping to wow the niche fan-base they have acquired through their DIY sound.
The colourful yet simplistic stage set up at The Deaf Institute allowed for the two openers, Darcie and Patawawa, to pave the way for the London collective, who, straight from sound check, opened with ‘Yuri’. From the initial melodic bassline oh so prominent throughout all of Moody’s sound, the band effortlessly glided into their jam, enticing the crowd and setting the pace for everything else to come.
Flowing through their set, providing an extremely energetic performance, Moody played their highly addictive, atmospheric songs that captivate an audience and often leave the band fully overwhelmed by the response they receive. ‘Pheromones’ highlighting their personality with their infusion of soul seeped funk evidently influenced from fellow Londoners, Jungle; while ‘Hypnotised’ creates the underwater feel so often apparent throughout the work of Porches.
With a set that so elegantly passes through every song, where each strategically-placed fill creates a different groove or sense of euphoria, accompanied by simple and catchy lyrics, it’s hard not to fall in love with the music Franc Moody plays. Highlights of the set however, came in the form of the penultimate song ‘Dance Moves’, and the beautifully worked encore ‘In Too Deep’, started by smooth RnB vocals reminiscent of Jorja Smith.
This diverse group of talented musicians provide a high tempo live performance full of excitement, electricity and creative flair, and react to the crowds every move, who in turn, can not help but love the unforced chemistry radiating from the stage.