Monkey Swallows the Universe…again!

You asked for it. TWO more MSTU shows, this time marking the 10th anniversary of our second album, The Casket Letters, which was released on Loose Records in 2007.

We’ll be playing The Casket Letters in full on Friday 28th July at Sheffield City Hall Ballroom. Tickets will be on sale for this one from Friday 10th March.

We’ll also be playing a set of our favourites at Indietracks Festival on Sunday 30th July. Tickets are on sale NOW.

Pic above by Chris Saunders, taken on the Bole Hills in Sheffield.

The Fisherman

Music helps

Everything is upside down. Music helps. Come and see us at The Lamplight Club in Sheffield on Fri 3 March, along with The Gentle Good. Tickets here.

The last time Gareth Bonello (The Gentle Good) came to Sheffield was the day after the General Election. We weren’t feeling too good then either, but we sang to a similarly bruised audience and we all helped each other. Here’s a video of the two of us singing together that night, performing Gareth’s beautiful song ‘The Fisherman’ – you can hear the proper version on his latest album ‘Ruins/Adfeilion’, which is out now on Bubblewrap Records.

More gigs coming soon.

Bandcamp

Tomorrow, Fri 3 Feb, Bandcamp are donating 100% of their shares of any music purchases to the American Civil Liberties Union. So you can help protect human rights and support independent musicians (cough cough) and treat yourself all at the same time.

Be excellent to each other.

Literature Fests – pics

Thanks to all who came along to Off the Shelf, Ilkley Literature Festival and Beverley Literature Festival over the last few days. I’ve loved every minute of being involved in this project and working alongside Andrew McMillan and Zodwa Nyoni. We’re hoping to take it to the Brontë Parsonage itself in 2017, keep an eye out.

Off the Shelf Festival – Upper Chapel
As well as being the first of our ‘New Responses to the Brontës’ events, Friday also saw the premiere of a film by Al Reffell which she had made to accompany my song Emily, the Diver. The film was projected onto the outside of the building, whilst me, Zodwa and Andrew were performing and discussing our work inside. Thanks to Wordlife and Arts Council England for supporting the film projection. It’s going to be projected twice more – onto CAST in Doncaster on Sat 29th October, and onto the Weston Park Museum in Sheffield on Fri 25th November. Available to watch online soon too.

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Ilkley Literature Festival – Ilkley Playhouse
Another great night followed on Saturday in Ilkley:

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L-R Andrew McMillan, Zodwa Nyoni, festival director Rachel Feldberg and me

Beverley Literature Festival – Beverley Minster
A stunning place to play!

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Here’s my view from the ‘stage’:14695469_10154272520793705_969849062773389628_n
We were interviewed here by John Wedgewood Clarke, lecturer in Creative Writing from the University of Hull. Going back to Beverley also gave me the chance to revisit one of my favourite pubs – Nellie’s. If you’re ever in Beverley, these are my tips – the Minster and Nellie’s!

Again a big, big thanks to the teams at Off the Shelf, Beverley and Ilkley festivals!

The Liberty System – out 21.10.16

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My Brontë Sisters triptych will be available on limited edition CD next month.

The Liberty System is a study of the three sisters, using classical elements and meteorology. You’ll be able to choose from three different covers with artwork by Oliver Allchin (there are just 100 of each cover). Each hand-numbered CD also comes with a tiny lyric booklet and magnifying glass, inspired by the tiny books the Brontës made as children.

The first chance to get yours will be at the ‘New Responses to the Brontës‘ events:

Then on Friday 21st October I’ll put all the remaining copies up for sale on Bandcamp. The songs will be available digitally then too. The songs/covers are:

  1. Anne, the Gardener             2. Emily, the Diver                 3. Charlotte, the Levitator
    anne-cover    emily-cover     charlotte-cover

Coming soon: Brontë project

I’m very excited to finally tell you what I’ve been working on the last few months. Early this year I was commissioned by Off the Shelf Festival of Words to write new music inspired by the Brontës, as part of the Brontë bicentenary celebrations.

I’ll be performing my piece – a musical triptych called ‘The Liberty System’ – alongside poet Andrew McMillan and playwright Zodwa Nyoni at Off the Shelf, Ilkley Literature Festival and Beverley Literature Festival this October.

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Fri 14 October – Upper Chapel, Sheffield
Sat 15 October – Ilkley Playhouse
Tue 18 October – Beverley Minster

AND I’ll also be releasing a limited edition CD as part of the project.

AND AND AND…the Sheffield date will also feature a projection onto the Upper Chapel of a film that’s being made to go with one of my songs, which is pretty special. I’ll share more about the Brontë project soon.

Before all that you can see me supporting Alasdair Roberts and James Green at the Lamplight Club in Sheffield on 27 September. Tickets here.