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VIOLETTE RECORDS

Studio Electrophonique

Buxton Palace Hotel

    Studio Electrophonique is the solo musical venture of James Leesley. Bright eyed, tousle-headed and with a look halfway between penitence and innocence, James conjures a sound akin to the dream where Bill Ryder-Jones fronts The Velvet Underground with echoes of Cherry Ghost drifting in there for good measure. Cinematic, melodic, warm - efficient in arrangement yet intricate in detail. On hearing the song "Jayne", Richard Hawley invited Studio Electrophonique to open for his band in London and Holmfirth in May 2019. Studio Electrophonique’s debut elp album “Buxton Palace Hotel” was released on 10” vinyl on Violette Records on 20 September 2019. Almost by word of mouth alone the record sold out within a fortnight capturing the admiration of audiences, journalists and musicians alike. Etienne Daho’s love of the record extended to a personal invite to James to perform as his special guest and open his show at the famous L’Olympia in Paris in January 2020. Studio Electrophonique will be playing live throughout 2020 including festival performances at Glastonbury, End of The Road and The Green Man.

    The Pistachio Kid

    Sweet Remedies

      The debut record by The Pistachio Kid entitled "Sweet Remedies" features eight songs of incandescent beauty, presenting wonderfully warm and infectious melodies, elegant harmonies and combining these with a collage of musical styles and arrangements. The Pistachio Kid is hailed by critics and audiences as an idiosyncratic, creative musician and songwriter invoking the early work of Randy Newman , Bert Jansch, Van Dyke Parks and The Sherman Brothers. The Pistachio Kid is the new musical project of Charlie McKeon, a talented and multi-instrumental singersongwriter from Liverpool. An urban-Huckleberry Finn character whose music transcends genres, is otherworldly yet melodically familiar and evokes the spirit of endless summers, the exuberance of youth and that belief that everything and anything is possible.

      "I love music that's about playing together, like Jazz or Bluegrass, and I love music that's about composition and beauty, like Debussy. And then I love music that's about an individual personality like Dylan. I love people exploring what they sound like, it's all good." The recordings were written, entirely performed and recorded by Charlie McKeon in his hometown of Liverpool and represent his coming of age as artist. McKeon is a graduate of Leeds College of Music and has become known for his intricate and colourful guitar playing, his unique voice and exquisite songs which balance the perfect ratio of lyrics to guitar. "People try to tailor your creativity before you’ve even done anything, you need to do it all first. The best advice is the opposite of that. John Fahey said ‘Play what you like to play, don’t worry about anyone else’. Imagine Dylan having singing lessons?!" "I wish I had written "Suzanne" by Leonard Cohen or "Happiness Is a Warm Gun" by John Lennon, or "René and Georgette Magritte With Their Dog After The War" by Paul Simon. They’re all very individual and delicate and they move in cool motions."

      Michael Head & The Red Elastic Band

      Adiós Señor Pussycat

      Beautiful and evocative and recorded in his home-town of Liverpool between March 2016 and June 2017, the album is the culmination of four years of hard work. Equal to his finest moments, Adiós Señor Pussycat will undoubtedly only further cement his reputation as one of this generations greatest songwriters.

      Since a self-imposed hiatus in 2008, Michael Head has been working with a fluid concept of an ever-rotating band format to provide a flexible platform for the range of his new live and recorded works.

      ‘Under the guise of Michael Head & The Red Elastic Band in 2013, they released their sought-after debut EP, Artorius Revisited, and followed this with a double A sided 7”, Velvets In The Dark / Koala Bears in 2015.

      A soulful and poetic genius, fate, bad luck and circumstance and often conspired to deny him his rightful dues. Loved and lauded by fellow artists and critics alike, he started out in the early 1980s with The Pale Fountains, with whom he recorded a brace of acclaimed albums, Pacific Street (1984) and …From Across The Kitchen Table (1985). He subsequently formed Shack with his brother John and went on to record five albums over almost twenty years including the much loved and acclaimed Waterpistol and HMS Fable in 1999 which saw the band briefly flirt with chart success and hailed from the cover of the NME as “our greatest songwriter”

      He also released, what is often regarded as his classic album, The Magical World Of The Strands under the name of Michael Head & The Strands in 1997, and with Shack currently on hiatus he has been performing under the Red Elastic Band guise for the past few years.

      The album features the following musicians:
      Michael Head - Vocals & Acoustic Guitar
      Steve Powell - Electric & Acoustic Guitars
      Phil Murphy - Drums
      Tom Powell - Bass Guitar
      Nina - Piano
      Dan Rogers - Electric Guitar
      Rod Skipp - Cello
      Dewi Tudor Jones - Violin
      Helen Tonge - Viola
      Martin Smith - Trumpet
      Andy Diagram - Trumpet
      Simon James - Saxophone
      Steve Powell, Joanne Head, Phil Murphy, Mary McCombs - Backing Vocals
      Michael Head, Phil Murphy, Karina Townsend - Percussion


      STAFF COMMENTS

      Andy says: Good things come to those who wait! It's been 11 long years and here it is: a modern day singer-songwriter, folk pop classic! Sounding closer to his work as The Strands than Shack, this uses his love of The Byrds and late-60's folkies to create a modern masterpiece, timeless and true. Our "Greatest Living Songwriter" (thanks NME!) has delivered. It better hadn't be 11 years 'til the next one!


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