Tag Archives: NONONO

Blogathon: Thank You & What’s In The Box Special

1 Feb

Whats In The Box

Here we are then, 24 hours of solid blogging done and dusted and a lot of money raised for Cancer Research. On Alphabet Bands there have been 32 posts, each containing some super quality music and not as much ramble or gubbins as we expected in the writing.

Between us, Breaking More Waves and Alphabet Bands have been sponsored to the tune of £1,355.66 which we think you’ll agree, is pretty good for two blokes jabbering on about music.

But there is still time to donate, still time to help us boost that total further up. If you’d been thinking about donating but thought you’d missed your chance, you haven’t. If you’ve enjoyed reading and listening to what we have written over the last 24 hours, you can still make it even more worthwhile by adding an extra pound or two to the pile.

Just push this lovely big button and follow the simple instructions.

JustGiving - Sponsor me now!

Despite 24 hours seeming like an eternity, and it did at a couple of points in the night, we now feel like we’ve actually run out of time and there was still so many tunes we wanted to share with you.

So, to finish off, here’s a very special edition of What’s In The Box which, for the only time ever, will feature just the one line about each track. Sorry about that but they are great tracks.

We hope you enjoy the music.

Before we get to the tunes though, we wanted to take a moment to say thank you.

Thank you to everyone who has read a post, listened to a track, watched a video, enjoyed it and shared it. Thank you to all the artists, labels and PRs who have shared content with us especially for the Blogathon. For the premieres, for the interview, for the exclusives, for the free downloads and for the pictures that you gave us, thank you.

Thank you to everyone who has been in touch with us over the 24 hours. To everyone who emailed, tweeted, commented, texted or facebooked us to say hi or offer words of appreciation. We couldn’t have done it without your support and encouragement, you’re amazing and we love you.

Thank you especially to Robin at Breaking More Waves. This was his idea, he deserves the credit, we were just along for the ride to keep him company and boost the total as best we can. Well done Robin, we’re proud of you.

Lastly, to those of you who sponsored us. You’re our favourites of them all.


Thank You!

There’s still time to donate and become one of our favourites. Go for it.

Until next time, we’re off to get some sleep.

Prides – “The Seeds You Sow”

Anthemic synth pop from Glasgow, not to be confused with Chvrches but full of energy, infectious hooks and big, confident melodies.

Beginnings – “Sports”

Retro sounding electro-pop from Arizona.

Waylayers – “Medicine”

Atmospheric synthpop with a dark and slightly sinister edge from one of our blog favourites, with a vast explosion of light at its denoument.

Longfellow – “Siamese Lover”

With elements of U2 and Snow Patrol, “Siamese Lover” is a cavalcade of pop sounds dressed with the complexities of love and life packaged together in a rousing 4 minute tune.

Model Aeroplanes – “Innocent Love”

Bright and bouncy radio friendly pop from a bunch of young guys full of exuberance and energy.

NONONO – “Hungry Eyes”

Hook heavy and rousing pop monster from one of ourtips for 2014 (not a cover version btw).

This post was written as part of a 24 Hour Sponsored Blogathon for Cancer Research. If you liked this post or just want to help support an important charity, please sponsor us. Just £1 can help make a difference. You can sponsor us here or by clicking the big button below. Thank you for your support.

JustGiving - Sponsor me now!

2014 Preview – Listen Out For – The Full List, and a little extra…

7 Dec

2014 Previews The Full List

So, after a week and a half and 15 individual posts, our countdown of artists we think you should Listen Out For in 2014 is complete. Before we crack on (next week) with our end of year lists, for those amongst you who are lazy/busy/just like things all in one place (delete as applicable), we have collated the full selection of artists below with a handy soundcloud playlist of all 15 for your enjoyment. Should you wish to read more about each, just click on their name to see the full article.

AND, as if that wasn’t enough, we even have a little bonus below the playlist of the acts who almost made the 15 but who we felt were too good to leave off entirely. Some honourable mentions if you will.

#15 – Mega Emotion

”Full of big brash sounds, riffage and booming beats it also features soothing vocals and retro-sensibilities. It’s raw and powerful but calm and quiet too, like a circus muscle man cuddling a poodle or something.”

#14 – Mononoke

”What we do know is that she is blessed with quite a voice and, judging by her debut track “Alice”, song writing talent. With her tragically beautiful lament to a little girl trapped in a grown up world, a life of lost love, apathy and melancholy, she has set the bar very high.”

#13 – Port Isla

“As well as being super talented, they are the kind of lovely people that you just want to do well. They make such enthusiastic and warm music that you can’t help but like them.”

#12 – NONONO

”“Pumpin Blood” is the track that has broken out everywhere, with its ‘gets under your skin’ whistle. You may not know it, but you would probably recognise it. Big and brash, vibrant and frenetic, it’s the seven dwarves whistling while they work having dropped some acid and taken speed.”

#11 – Fractures

”…the gorgeous dreamy electro sounds of “Twisted”, complete with soft, soulful falsetto vocals that would stop a rhino’s heart, and the evocative crescendos of atmospheric folksiness on “Embers” were soon joined by the fabulous “Cadence” and “Tizer”.”

#10 – Embers

”They played two sets at The Great Escape, one in a grand high-ceilinged venue that allowed their music to spread and soar, the other in the cramped space of the Mesmerist pub where their sound exploded out at the audience, pummelling them with intensity and energy as veins bulged and sinews strained. It was one of the most intense, in your face performances we saw all year and we loved it.”

#9 –

”She is an artist that creates genuine excitement and a buzz of anticipation whenever she is about to perform. She even had the audacity to upstage the headlining AlunaGeorge on her recent UK tour and won many more fans in so doing.”

#8 – Pale

”It’s synth pop but ice cold, too cold even for Van Damme as it slides along stealthily like a glacier, taking you in its cool hand off to a world of desolate beauty. A world where the stark surroundings, the bleakness and desolation carry a majestic splendour, it’s not a world of disrepair but one that has been lovingly tended and cultured.”

#7 – Pawws

”Our love for the music of Pawws was immediate and full on, an infatuation. Her music is instantly accessible and enjoyable with influences from the likes of Robyn, Annie and Madonna and vocals that are beautifully sweet and heartfelt. She can do big vibrant rainbows of sound, all danceable and bright and she can do genteel and calm as well.”

#6 – Gems

”The vocals are sweet and breathless, a whispered caress on a smooth gossamer breeze of synths and electronic beats. Weightless and elegant, like moments of purity handed down from above, unsullied and unspoiled for us to enjoy and bathe in their beauty.”

#5 – Iyes

”They make pop music, but it’s not homogenised pre-packaged pop, it’s edgy and different but with enough accessibility to transcend the blogosphere and break the mainstream consciousness. Like Chvrches but without as many 80’s reference points and fewer lasers.”

#4 – Lyla Foy

”The songs are reflective and the arrangements offer an intimacy to the listener, a closeness brought from the instrumentation, the emotion and purity of the music and lyrics. It’s delicate, like the frayed edges of a heart whose thread could be pulled at any moment, and it’s utterly gorgeous.”

#3 – Avec Sans

”What they do so well, and what we absolutely adore, is make fantastically upbeat and danceable tunes. Electro sparkles and beats flash and pulse like a grand firework display against a night sky of synths and melody. Choruses are made to be sung along to while your feet tap and shuffle, heads nod, arms twist and bodies convulse in rhythmical movement; sprung into life by the infectious and compelling sounds.”

#2 – Empress Of

”Her music is addictive and tingle making, high art meets pop accessibility in the most gorgeous manner. Seductive tones, swirling melodies that draw you in and buffet you gently along as the beats take synths by the hand and swoon and sway along like cavorting partners, clinging to each other in the low light of a slow dance.”

#1 – Sivu

”He is a beguiling artist, telling tales born in the shadows of anguish, or inspired by theology in a rousing and heartswelling manner. Acoustic sounds marble with electronic embellishments, strings ebb and flow with the tide and all the while, introspections and observations pour out like nectar for our soul. It is entirely possible, ironically, to lose yourself in his lightly rasping voice and warm melodies. Even when singing “Coldhands” is like a walk across a warm yellow corn field on a calm day, fingers running over the tops of the long stems as they are rustled by a gentle breeze.”

Honourable Mentions…



If you’re wondering what that massive kaboom sound was just then, it was your senses under attack and your brain screaming out for more. Portsmouth/Brighton pair Curxes make blitz-pop and there’s no escape from its aural magnificence and energy. Last year they were one of the most blogged about artists in the UK (despite having no PR or representation) and while 2013 has been comparatively quiet, the new songs they played for us at Norwich Sound and Vision in October are sounding amazing and could take them to a whole new level in 2014.


Strangers London Lights

We’ve been championing the case for this London trio for some time now and with their debut EP on the way, and a follow up scheduled for the new year it could well be that the breakthrough they’ve threatened for so long could be about to happen. Their dark hued electro pop is common cold level catchy but immensely enjoyable and danceable. And while you can get your groove on whilst sneezing your face inside out, we wouldn’t recommend it. Get down to some Strangers instead, it’s much more fun.

Jack Robert Hardman


Our main man Jack. As our ‘H’ artist we have been following the fortunes of Mr Hardman for a while now and we feel that bigger and better things are just around the corner. His debut album made our end of year list in 2012 and while this year has been more about remixing and a charming little video (below), 2014 should be all about JRH. There’s a new EP on the way, with guest vocalists and artists a-go-go and judging by the unfinished demos we heard a couple of months back, it’s going to be a beauty.

Abi Wade

Abi Wade

One woman, one cello, two foot pedals and an array of sound, melody, rhythms and innovation. Yes, she is a pair of cymbals between her knees away from full-on-market-square-one-man-band-status, but while that shark remains unjumped she is an incredible live performer and musician. She’s got the songs to back it up as well, beautiful and soothing but also full of drama and emotion when they need to be. She’s been writing recently so hopefully that means an album could be on the way in 2014.

Leon Else

Leon Else

Be it fantastical and mystical or very much down to earth and even carnal, Leon Else can and will deliver a tune and half with the deep but light rumbling vocal at its heart. He sees the world slightly differently from most of us but that just makes his music all the more interesting and captivating. With radio play from the likes of Radio 1 and Amazing Radio already under his belt, 2014 could well see his proclamation that the future is

Laura Welsh

Laura Welsh

Laura’s sophisticated, R&B infused pop has passed through our inbox on the odd occasion over the last few months and while we always very much enjoyed it, other commitments meant we never quite got round to writing about it (despite intending to). On seeing her supporting London Grammar recently, we were instantly filled with regret that said posts never made it out of our heads and onto the page. She was fantastic. Big danceable sounds were offset with a deceptively big and powerful vocal and softer, gentler moments were treated with care and affection. 2014 should be a big one for Laura and we won’t be making the mistake of not writing about her again, trust us.

2014 Preview: Listen Out For #12 – NONONO

29 Nov


We continue our 2014 preview series with a band we’ve actually never featured before on Alphabet Bands, shame on us, but one who is surely going to blow up in the next 12 months. To be fair, NONONO haven’t exactly slunk through 2013 without any attention, their insanely catchy dance-pop collecting plaudits from the likes of Popjustice and being synched all over the place.

Being Swedish (seriously, what do they drink over there that means they can all make such glorious pop music, and can we have some please?) you’d expect greatness, but as two-thirds of the group spent 10 years as hip-hop producers, you might not have expected it to come in this form. We’re bloody glad it has though. Comparisons to Niki & the Dove are unsurprising given how damn catchy their music is, how steeped in pop history it is and how little flickers of darkness creep in around the edges of otherwise dazzling colours.

“Pumpin Blood” is the track that has broken out everywhere, with its ‘gets under your skin’ whistle. You may not know it, but you would probably recognise it. Big and brash, vibrant and frenetic, it’s the seven dwarves whistling while they work having dropped some acid and taken speed. “Like The Wind” is darker, like a beautiful sorceress in her castle of ice, looking out over the land she rules with a gloved hand of evil and magic and who you can’t take your eyes off.

The buzz is there for NONONO, the tunes are there, the ambition and desire is there and, when their debut album comes (supposedly in early 2014) success and critical acclaim will surely follow.

Stalk NONONO: Website / Facebook / Twitter