Under the Radar: Luna Blue

By Barry Humphreys

Brighton based Luna Blue’s approach to their musical landscape brings with it a remarkable set of influences. The sound of this band defies – in fact proudly denies – getting itself identified to any one box, trend or fad. Are they funky? Yes! Are they jazz? Yes! Are they soul? Yes! Are they rock? Yes! They cross boundaries and carve out wayward paths in territories that so many other musicians haven’t even thought to explore.

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These guys give new meanings to the words “alternative” and “indie”, but without forgetting the necessity of making their music superbly accessible for the listener. It’s not broad brush strokes on their musical canvas either, its fine detail that comes to life in audio-full-colour. They have imagination, passion, sincerity, but manage to make it look and sound easy at the same time.

Perhaps it’s no surprise to find out then that as individuals, Tom (vocals and rhythm); Ryan (lead guitar); Nick (bass); and Seb (drums), were still wearing short trousers when they started playing and listening to music. It’s fairly obvious that along the way they’ve absorbed influences to the point where they’ve made them personal, taken ownership and carefully nurtured them. It makes me wonder what remains untapped and waiting in stasis for future discovery!

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The depth of imagination is underlined by their recent appearance with a thirty-piece orchestra in Chichester, with arrangements for said players by Nick. For the time being at least, it was a one-off event and I for one am gutted that I found out about it too late to get myself there. Some small consolation for me – and you- is the promise of a forthcoming release of the recording of the event.

They’re currently working on songs to be released later in the year, but discover them now by way of 2017’s Nightjar EP. Float Away is restrained, tight, structured, thoughtful; the soulful Borrowed Words; Welcome Home casually laid-back and controlled…. But my advice would be to leave the title song, Nightjar, to the end of your introductory listen. From its very start it’s a menacing song which in parts is almost blissfully uncomfortable in the best of ways. It’s a deep dark hymn that echoes around your senses but pulls you into a drifting, shifting musical soundscape. Listen to this and walk away feeling slightly disturbed but uplifted at the same time.Then go back and listen to it all again. Luna Blue have that sort of effect. Wonderful!

Luna Blue are geared up to make a big impression this summer. They’re lined up to play the Seaside Rox Music Festival in Bognor Regis on 21st April 2018, so get along and show them some support! Meanwhile, check out their links below:

One to Watch: Wild Horse

Barry Humphreys, the newest member of the Urban Antenna team, has taken some time out from his own blossoming music career to give the low-down on Wild Horse. They’re bold, brash and recently signed to the exciting Studio 3 Records:

Wild Horse celebrate their fifth anniversary in April. They’ve been in our sights for some time, so what better time to take a look at what these boys can do. In a nutshell, they’ve been not so quietly paying their dues and honing the craft of what they do. So stop thinking…look and listen! Radio stations around the world are giving them airtime and they’re building on 2016’s debut album “It’s Begun” very, very nicely thank you very much.

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My first taste of Wild Horse came when I walked into “The Wall” (ouch !). This deceptive track lulled me into a false sense of security in those first few seconds . It sounded like a Brit-pop moment (maybe Cast?) but the boys had the laugh. I’m quietly minding my own business one minute and then the rug’s pulled out from under me and I’m thinking “MOSH PIT!!!”…and lovin’ it!  Henry, Jack and “Barking” Ed having an in-yer-face moment…… well, yes exactly…. that’s what they do! One minute they’re doing subtle, then they’re not – it explodes into something special when you’re least expecting it! So if that’s what you like, you need to take a listen to Wild Horse.

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The Wall” is from the “Timeless Dancing” EP – check it now. It’s a great mix of tracks, including “It’s Only Rejection”, a another favourite that is most definitely louder than the thunder. So listen…… listen…. then have another listen to some of their other hidden gems. Another stand-out track is “Do We Really Know”. It’s a big-big sing-along anthem that conjures images of a big-big crowd giving it loads down at a big-big festival. And you just know that everyone will be loving every moment of it.

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Wild Horse aren’t one-trick ponies. They have loads of great songs, with great hooks that will appeal across the generations.  Just take “She Comes And Goes”, which is something like Velvet Underground meets the 21st Century. The influences are there but Wild Horse then bring it all together to give us their own unique take on what it’s like to be a front-runner guitar band in 2018.

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At the moment they’re writing and recording new songs for their second album, which will be with us on Studio 3 Records before long. But in the meantime check the dates and catch them live…it’s an experience that will most definitely not disappoint. On stage they’re a driving force. They’ll send you home with a smile on your face and some very good news to share with all those other people you know who love great music. The future’s looking very good indeed for Wild Horse!

 

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Want to find out more about Wild Horse? Get in touch with us at Urban Antenna or contact the band direct on social media or via their website:

www.facebook.com/wildhorseuk

www.wildhorse-rockband.com

https://twitter.com/wildhorserockuk

www.soundcloud.com/wildhorseuk

www.reverbnation.com/wildhorse6

www.wildhorse1.bandcamp.com

http://www.youtube.com/user/wildhorserockuk

http://www.studio3label.com/wildhorse

Under the Radar: Haunted like Human

Nashville is synonymous with Country but scratch the surface and there’s so much more. Urban Antenna has been scouring the Tennessee back streets to see what alternative acts are lurking in the shadows. Our searching has paid off…we’ve unearthed a fantastically promising contemporary folk duo who are just waiting to be picked by a record label.

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Haunted like Human are Cody Clark and Dale Chapman. Clark is an unassuming and highly talented guitarist. He’s a musical thoroughbred with a degree in composition; his understanding of musical form is evident in his delicate yet complex conceptions. Chapman is a folk-vocalist who delivers her lyrics with true emotion and depth. She writes from the heart and is an accomplished poet and lyricist. They combine to great effect and their song writing a joy to listen to, especially when you realise they have only been collaborating for ten months.

 

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Haunted like Human’s debut LP, Ghost Stories, is a dreamy and uplifting twelve-track album that was recorded following a highly successful crowd funding campaign. The album is two parts folk and one part Americana, flavoured with a dash of The Civil Wars and Penny & Sparrow. It’s pure and uncluttered, focusing on guitar, cello and vocals. Less is more in this case and the apparent simplicity of the album is its main strength.

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Ghost Stories begins its journey with the spellbinding First Light. Some may find it strange to open an album with an instrumental, especially when Chapman’s striking vocal is so prominent thereafter, but it represents just what it stands for: a glorious sunrise on a perfect summer morning. The title track, Ghost Stories, offers the first real taste of Haunted like Human. It’s a beautifully evocative song that’s full of meaning and is delivered with true emotion by both musicians.

From a UK perspective, the infectious River (Come Back Up) has the greatest potential for success. It’s the most mainstream track on the album but it’s also one of the strongest. With a toe-tapping beat and tons of romantic imagery, this track screams summer. Other standout tracks are the heart breaking Benjamin – a poignant story of lost love; the powerful Tides and the soulful In a Bad Way. Storyteller is a fantastic closing track and winds the album down to a perfect conclusion, an opposing bookend to First Light that provides a peaceful sunset to a wonderful album.

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It’s set to be a busy year for Haunted like Human as they continue gaining exposure on the Nashville circuit, writing new material and preparing for a booked-out summer touring the States. They’re set to be firm favourites on the festival scene, starting this March in Austin at the Red Gorilla Music Fest followed by Dirty Fest. If you’re in the area, get along and show them some support!

Like what you hear? Get in touch with Haunted like Human via Urban Antenna, or follow them on social media:

https://www.facebook.com/haunted.like.human.music/

Twitter: @HLHOfficial

 

 

 

 

Music in Pictures

Nothing captures the rawness of an electrifying musical performance like black and white photography. Here are some of our favourites:

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