In a series of live streamed performances and with arts council support, Melting Vinyl is giving a new generation of exciting artists the opportunity to perform at the beautiful and historical setting of St. George’s Church, Brighton, a unique professional space which is usually reserved for internationally profiled touring artists.
Over the last twenty four years, Brighton-based independent live music promoters Melting Vinyl have grown from a small one-woman operation to a well-established and highly respected organisation with a name synonymous with supporting female artists and presenting innovative and electrifying quality live shows.
With a passion for grassroots independent music at it’s heart, Melting Vinyl has always sought to offer a platform for local emerging artists and bands, often in a peripheral but essential role as support for the main act.
This new series of shows from St George’s celebrates our grassroots musicians and places diverse artists who wouldn’t ordinarily come through the door at its heart, as the main event, where they can perform against a beautiful backdrop with outstanding acoustics to complement their music.
Having worked alongside St. George’s Church since 2001, Melting Vinyl are looking forward to opening the newly painted doors and connecting once more with this heritage building and its inhabitants.
Each show will be recorded by Mat Benzie, Brighton’s infamous sound engineer and Brighton’s internationally renowned camera/light artist Innerstrings.
THE FIRST STREAM: Seadog | 29th May | 8pm – Tickets HERE.
Seadog is the project of Brighton-based musician and songwriter Mark Benton and Tom Chadd and their eclectic troupe of performers that create dream-pop songs. They combine a variety of influences into a myriad sound of lullabies with anthemic electric and acoustic samples and textures.
The band is currently working on their forthcoming second album ‘Internal Noise’ at Bella Union Studios, Brighton. Recordings began deep in the 2020 lockdown and have been expanded upon in the studio with Jack Wolter of Penelope Isles on production duties. The album features Jack Wolter on drums, backing vocals and additional guitars, while sister Lily Wolter, also from Penelope Isles, guests on the record.
Seadog have previously worked with Phill Brown (Audio Engineer for Talk Talk, Led Zeppelin, The Rolling Stones, David Bowie, Bob Marley) to complete their debut album ‘Cabin Fever Blues’, released in 2018. Seadog have had songs playlisted on Amazing Radio and BBC Introducing The South, on which they have also performed a live session. They have also been selected and reviewed numerous times for Tom Robison’s Fresh on the net blog.
What people have said about Seadog:
“Seadog have been quietly working their way into our hearts through a consistent run of tracks released over the last few years. New song “As I Am” takes things even deeper. With a delightful balance of soft melancholia and pristine harmonies, occasionally recalling the tone of a young Elliott Smith, Seadog’s home within our hearts is set for many more years to come.” – Simon Raymonde (Cocteau Twins/Bella Union)
“Really pretty good and nice voice” – David Crosby
“There is this back & forth between intimate and distant that I really like. And when it goes big and confident…it still manages to stay soft and thoughtful”. Also “Tidal Wave ticks all the boxes for me…but above all, it sounds like it’s flying and I have a soft spot for songs that sound like they are flying.”– Jason Lytle (Grandaddy)
“Really love Tidal Wave, lovely melody and the chorus lifts off so well.” – Matthew Caws (Nada Surf)
Tidal Wave was released on the 14th May across the digital platforms, as well as on a limited edition 7″ lathe cut on the Gardener’s Delight label. The B side is a remix by Brighton-based pop duo Fruity Water.
For more information on Seadog, visit seadogmusic.com
THE SECOND STREAM: Bella Spinks | 20th June | 8pm – Tickets HERE.
Singer-songwriter Bella Spinks released her debut album, ‘Homeostasis’, in 2018 on Sublime Recordings. Showcasing her signature piano style and inventive vocals, she has drawn comparisons to Joni Mitchell, Kate Bush, Carole King and Regina Spektor, but the album’s unique, compelling and hypnotic world is all her own.
Hailing from Brighton, Bella grew up listening to Carole King, Joni Mitchell and Jonatha Brooke. “I write songs, play piano and sing” she says, but that’s only half the story. As a young person she was enamoured by the journey of age and transition, and for Bella song writing became a way to transcribe those feelings, to explore how they made her feel and to help process what they meant. “There are many novel experiences that no one quite understands. We are constantly trying to find balance in life, and this is such the central part of my song writing”, she explains, “to be able to craft something that can illustrate an experience of a world you can control, a world you can oversee, to create stories and to know their endings.”
It is this theme that is threaded throughout the narrative of ‘Homeostasis’: ‘Noble Lie’, the story of Plato’s ‘Myth of Metals’ in which he suggests a way of keeping a society in check, the fascinating story of two identical twins separated at birth and their unique journey back to each other in ‘Sister’ and ‘Laurel Tree’, which was inspired by the Greek myth; the idea of roots being planted by a riverside so that the tree would grow forever.
Bella played her first gig at Brighton’s Concorde 2 at only 12 years of age, and has since gone on to support Ellie Goulding, The Staves, Rae Morris, Ron Sexsmith, Low Chimes, Sea of Bees, Viv Albertine, Laetitia Sadia, Alex Winston, Basia Bulat, The Apache Relay, Foy Vance, Jake Isaac, Robert Ellis and Husky. She has also played Together The People and Norwich Sound & Vision Festivals and Communion shows in London, Brighton and Leeds.
‘Homeostasis’ was produced by Matt Ingram (Laura Marling, Lianne La Havas, Denai Moore), with whom Bella found a kindred spirit, “Instead of using conventional instruments all the time we tried to be inventive with what was available… making sounds from bass drum cases, walls and boxes”, and also features string arrangements by Tom Hobden (Noah and The Whale).
“Bella has the true instincts of every born poet, lyricist or writer that ever breathed” Tom Robinson 6music
Other forthcoming shows:
More streams to come from now until September.
About St. George’s Church:
Melting Vinyl has hosted some incredible artists in this beautifully unique, heritage venue, St George’s Church in Kemptown.
It was clear from Sigur Ros, the first MV promoted show in 2001, that the space had a restorative, almost spiritual effect on the audience experience.
Soon many other hirers were attracted to the space and Melting Vinyl were asked to take over the running of these events, which has led to the church being hired by many national and local festivals and promoters who have put on shows with The Residents, Brian May, Bombay Bicycle Club, Fujiya Miyagi, Ren and many many more.
“It has been great to work with Melting Vinyl – they have been collaborative in their approach. It has also been a great privilege to host some brilliant artists and performances.” Rev Fr Andrew Manson Brailsford (Vicar of St George’s Church)
Acts programmed by Melting Vinyl include Patti Smith, The Unthanks, Joan as Police Woman Courtney Pine, Noah & The Whale and Bat For Lashes.