PREVIEW: Shields at Cluny 2, Newcastle on 30th January 2015

Shields1Newcastle indie pop five-piece, Shields, are headlining the Cluny 2 at the end of this month. The gig, entitled New Year New Tunes is the perfect opportunity for them to showcase some of their new music, having spent time squirreled away in Blank Studios recording their debut album, How Can We Fix This?, set for release in Spring this year.

For those not in the know, the group released their six track EP, Kaleidoscope, in 2012, unleashing their own brand of happy go lucky indie pop designed to make you want to sing and dance. ‘Momentum’, from the debut, was recently featured as the musical bed for the inaugural BBC Radio 1’s Music Awards – a highly coveted slot, I’m sure. Check out top track, ‘Mezzanine’, with its accompanying brilliant sock puppet video, to catch the guys at their best.

Mezzanine by Shields

If the EP is anything to go by, the new tracks will no doubt capture the sound of summer; an ideal tonic to the dreary doldrums of austerity and tee totality between Christmas and Valentine’s Day. Their sound is reminiscent of Fenech Soler, Two Door Cinema Club and a more upbeat Swim Deep, with multi-layered vocal harmonies, smooth synths and catchy keyboards. But before you punch their name into Spotify, make sure you don’t confuse them with the Shields who appear on Essential Doo Wop Vol. 4: an altogether different prospect, for sure.

Support comes from Gallery Circus, made up of twins Dan and Graeme, who (in their own words) play unique and abrasive rock. Recent track, ‘Hollywood Drip’, has been featured on the BBC’s North East radio show and will be released early 2015. An interesting, well-produced sound from another promising North East band that has spent time in Chicago and San Francisco, giving their sound a rounded, grungier feel than the pop-influenced headliners.

First on the bill is singer-songwriter Charlie Dancer, just six months into his solo career and already proving popular in both Newcastle and London.

It may be the depths of winter, but a mere five of your English pounds is all you need to transport you to sunnier climes in Newcastle this January – riding there on the coat tails of some local bands bringing a new sound, a brasher sound and a sound that’s not afraid to try new things.

Previewer: Jennifer Westmoreland

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