Monday, 23 April 2012

Band Profile: God's Mama

I don't think I have the right vocabulary to describe just how much we at Bands & Books HQ are looking forward to this one! Let's just say we're jittering about and listening to this epic performance on Tom Robinson's 6 Music show, and generally feeling woozy. 

Yes WOOZY, that's what I came up with. 

Now, for those who have yet to encounter God's Mama, here's their bio (spoiler, think of the perfect possible band for Bands & Books; that):

Where so many female vocalists in Really Heavy Bands play on the contrast with whispers, drawls, or exaggerated girlishness, Sibyl Madrigal, a Texan performance poet, growls and snarls to match the post-punk / slowcore grind, making this a mixture of Swampland and Spiderland ...
... 20 years ago, Kim Gordon deadpanned: “England didn’t invent punk-rock; girls did.” True, the girls of this decade’s post-punk revival have lasted longer than most, but God’s Mama point to the flaw: where are the older Women making punk? (written by Michael Mellor, Nov 2010)

Sibyl Madrigal, the group’s lyricist and singer, is an infamous performance poet who has worked with players including Lol Coxhill, Paul Rogers, Pat Thomas and Alex Ward for many years. Her work has shocked and delighted discerning audiences from Dallas to New York to London to Edinburgh to Amsterdam ...
Alex Ward, the group's guitarist, discovered at the tender age of 14 by the late great Derek Bailey, was born to play. a sickeningly talented multi-instrumentalist who has played with Eugene Chadbpourne and come to the attention of anyone of note.
On bass, the band features the moody magic of Darren Morris, who works with DJs and producers including Tim Goldsworthy (DFA Records & Massive attack), Ashley Beedle, David Holmes adn Jagz Kooner (Reverend And The Makers, The Whip). His bass beats like the very pulse of God's Mama's own heart.
On drums, Lee Morris is arguably the most bitchin' powere drummer in the world of rock! And yes they're brothers too.
The first album is on sale at Ray's Jazz, Foyles (3rd floor) and Sister Ray's, Berwick Street, London.
We are the tightest, mightiest, strangest band to bend the rock world in years, at least since Janis Joplin's first furtive fumblings with Patti Smith.
God's Mama blesses you.
See God's Mama very much doing their thing alongside Morte Point, Abigail Tarttelin and Molly Naylor on Sunday 29th April (THIS SINDAY) at Power Lunches in Dalston. 
See you on Sunday! 

Saturday, 21 April 2012

Reader Profile: Abigail Tarttelin

Bands and books has three rules:

1: Bands
2: Books
3: Drinking

Helping us to comply with rule #2 is Abigail Tarttelin:

At 24, Abby is a Huffington Post blogger, Books Editor at London fashion mag PHOENIX and one of the youngest published novelists in the UK. Her book FLICK, a big ball of quirkiness, sex, drugs, humour and sorrow, bashed onto the scene in 2011, receiving rave reviews from, amongst others,, who predicted FLICK to be a 'slow burn cult classic'. Abby has read before at many a Literary Death Match and is looking forward to the mash-up of music and words that is Bands and Books. Visit her online at:

Just as we're interested in our band's reading lists, we like to get some insight to our reader's musical proclivities.  Abby sent us a list of some her favourite songs, and by the magic of the internet, you can enhance your browsing experience by listening to them RIGHT NOW:


You can catch Abby in person reading at Bands & Books Spring edition next Sunday, so get yourself down to Power Lunches, we kick off from 7:30!

Monday, 9 April 2012

Band Profile: Morte Point

Fresh from a brooding debut performance at London's 229 the Venue, we're psyched to present Morte Point. Expect tumbling rhythms, spacious, menacing guitar work over delicate vocal melodies and throbbing bass lines:

 'Morte Point are the kind of band you'd see in the bar of a Lynch film: noirish, dreamy and unsettling. They take their cues from rock's minimalist past, but the shadowy world they create is entirely their own. Plaintive vocals are underscored by hushed music ranging from dolorous minor key melodies to droning build-ups, but in all of which: Every. Note. Counts. ' 

We asked Morte Point for some literary reference points, and quickly learned that this is possibly the most literary band we've ever worked with - a perfect storm of Bands & Books:

Richard (Guitar):

At the moment I'm just about to finish Philip Roth's Everyman, and my next books will be Cormac McCarthy's Blood Meridian and Scarlett Thomas' Our Tragic Universe, both of which I'm taking on holiday. I also recently re-read The Sheltering Sky by Paul Bowles and Simon Reynolds' Retromania - a brilliant analysis of our nostalgic music scene.

A recent discovery is Edward Thomas' poetry, and I rediscovered Raymond Carver's short story collections. I'm looking forward to reading Cathedral, which I just bought. I also loved the film of The Hunger Games, which is a great adaptation of a fantastic children's novel.

I was recently inspired by the triumvirate of novels from American heavyweight authors Jonathan Franzen, Jennifer Egan and Jeffrey Eugenides: Freedom, A Visit From The Goon Squad and The Marriage Plot are three of the best novels I have ever read and proof that the American novel is as healthy as ever.
Writers I am intending to read soon: 
James M Cain
Elizabeth Bishop
Elizabeth Bowen 

Saphia (vocals):

Where to start!

I think it would be fair to say that our music is inspired by a number of books and their characters. With particular songs we've been influenced by 'Infinite Jest', Cormac McCarthy, Anne Sexton, 'The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn', Ted Hughes, Annie Proulx, Virginia Woolf. All of the good depressing ones!

I'm currently reading ‘The Growth of the Soil’ by Knut Hamsun. I’m quite fond of epic novels from other eras that sprawl through the dramatics of a family history, love, war, sodomy and all. So 2 of my favourite authors are Steinbeck and Gabriel García Márquez.

I just finished re-reading ‘The Sound and the Fury‘, it’s wonderful and always bizarre,  I love it when he Faulkner writes about the smell of the night and the sound of death. I’d have to echo Richard about Jennifer Egans ‘ A Visit from the Good Squad’ and Franzens ‘Freedom’ which I recently read too, both amazing, as well as 'The Road' by Cormac McCarthy, which was beautiful.

On a more upbeat level, the graphic novel 'Kiki De Montparnasse' it’s wonderful too.

We are the book band.

Catch Morte Point playing with God’s Mama, alongside performances from writers Molly Naylor and Abigail Tarttelin at Bands Books Spring, Powerlunches Arts Café on Sunday 29th April from 7:30, pre-order cheaper tickets here