Live Review – As December Falls @ Fulford Arms, York


Support:Y!kes, Heartsink

Looking back this was my most anticipated show of 2021 in York mainly because I’ve been waiting to see the headliners As December Falls for ages! On the other hand, I was so hyped for this show as it took place at a favourite venue in my hometown?! I couldn’t think of anything better.

First up were the hometown heroes themselves, Heartsink. Now due to a positive Covid case in the band, they had to go acoustic for the night within a matter of hours and bless them, it worked really well! It’s a tough thing to do in a limited timeframe but it was a really lovely mellow start to the evening, an enjoyable pallet cleanser from the day to get everything and everyone in the mood.

Seconds up were the larger than life Y!ikes. Now truth be told, I had no idea this band were playing until the night but what a surprise! A massive and fresh faced band for me to enjoy who just seemed to soak up every ounce of energy in the place and threw it back to everyone. I hardly see a band that can do this but that made them all the more impressive to watch. Everyone just built on the anticipation from the guitar riffs to the vocals, but the standout? Their very fashionable guitarist mainly because that dude was freaking crazy! if you look at the pics you can certainly feel the energy pulsating right through the pic!

Onto As December Falls, it’s safe to say they didn’t disappoint. The set is filled with loads of their Pop-Punk bangers to prove that yes the UK does have some fantastic talent but more to that, the ferocity the band contain only has them bursting at the seams of the venue especially when they culminate into some of their larger tracks. What’s more is that they’re destined for larger venues soon and with all the festivals they’re going to be a part of in 2022, it’ll only strengthen their fanbase and prepare them to get all their energy out and about! A sonic battle for the ages at this venue, the Sold Out show and tour certainly got the fans their money’s worth and more by the time things got to the end.

With the whole performance, it makes you wonder that where’s the limit for As December Falls? They’re one of the UK’s hot up and coming acts in the entirety of the genre and we can’t wait to see what comes next from the bands.

Rating: 8/10.

Photos by JackLiddPhotography.

Live Review: Covent & Thick Skin @ Fulford Arms, York

Support: Heartsink, Merrick’s Tusk

Date: 15/04/20

This was the last show before COVID-19 shut everything for myself so I’m going to do my best as to remember as much as I can from the show. As with the Frank Turner review, I’m writing this late because I’ve had problems on my end with different aspects which have punctured my ability to be online and continue this blog but now I’m at a stable capacity as to continue for the time being.

Now I don’t think I’ll ever get tired of watching Heartsink play. I don’t know if it’s their drummer Jake and the hilarious faces that he makes to the audience or Kiel’s nature to just never stand still for more than two seconds at a time, but they’re just so much fun to be able to watch live and to date one of the bands I’ve seen live the most as well where their sound is constantly being perfected where hopefully when the lockdown has stopped we’ll see them playing to their best!

Seconds on are Merrick’s Tusk. Off the bat, I didn’t guess that they’d be as melodic as they came (which is one of the most charming things about the band) across but as with everything these days, looks can be deceiving where they powered through some utterly fantastic tunes to get everybody just that little bit more interested in what was going on during their set. What’s more, is that everyone just became more fixed on them as if they were in a trance so just watch out next-time you watch this band play.

Now I don’t know what it was about Thick Skin but it was as if someone ordered everyone straight to the front of the stage and were made to salute but everyone packed to them in a timely fashion. This band just stormed on and without seemingly trying to stole everyone’s attention and got everyone in the crowd in form. Now I’m not sure if it was the infectious guitar streams of ‘Medicine’ or the accompanying Bass mentality but there was something about this band that made them piercing to just watch and as when I’m finished here, will be listening to again and again.


Now Covent showed us why they were there. Some bands rarely understand how to get themselves picked up by the masses and Covent are just well on their way to. If you listen to any of their tracks, the production is among the best and when compared to watching them live, you see more or less exactly what you hear. But what you see as well, is a well put together setlist which draws everyone in further as well as the group’s energy, more than what Thick Skin we’re able to culminate to something which just pulsates to what just has to be seen. Hopefully, next-time people are in, we’ll get some pits going and things can turn up to eleven.

Rating: 6.5/10


Live Review: Roam @ Basement, York

Support: Heartsink, Superlove

Date: 03/02/20

NOTE: Now for this UK tour, Roam decided to have two bands from their respective venues hometown play open for them on every show. This was only one on this particular night as due to unknown reasons, one of the band; We Need To Talk dropped out of the show.

Despite one of the opening bands dropping out, this meant Heartsink were the only local band opening the show. This was a revitalised Heartsink that I was watching because as I’m concerned because I’ve watched these lads play a few times in the last year and compared to that, they were raw, powerful and emotionally tapping into their greatest tracks, along with some amazing new belters, all for the crowd to consume. ‘Starting Over’ which the crowd did respond well to was the standout track for them because it sounds as if this is the time taken with this one was right which could mean larger and brighter things for them in the near future. It sounded more personal to vocalist Zac Roughton and based on their performance, just amplified the track to a different height alongside the additional vocals from Bassist Bryn Portas. I do hope they’re able to capitalise on this in the future because based off of this performance, it just seems inevitable.

In all honesty, as well, their sets sound quality was by far the best in my opinion. I don’t know if this was down to the equipment, knowledge of the venue but when they played their set was the clearest to make out from the vocals and when (*SPOILER ALERT ON SETLIST FOR ROAM) Hand Grenade came on, it wasn’t until that which Roam sounded good on the night.




Next on was Superlove. For the atmosphere of the whole room, it should’ve been a lot more receptive but I think the genre-bending didn’t work out too well in this lineup on the evening mainly because I was getting more Indie music vibes from the band. Not to say that it wasn’t a good performance from the Bristol Trio as ‘Big Lies, Boy’ is definitely the highlight of their discography but there is more fine-tuning which needs to be done before they take the next steps.



So, I’ve been into the quality of the sound quickly earlier in this post but I just wanted to address the venue as well, namely that the ceiling of The Basement was well too low for any crazy moshpits to happen during Roam’s faster track choices and I understand that it’s an Independent Venue tour where I’m not attempting to take anything from it but to me, the Basement for a gig such as Roam was a very inadequate space to house it, especially since there were two beams built into the structure of the building meaning if you watched the performances from a certain angle, your view is completely blocked and there’s these benches slap bang in the middle of the room (Which I believe could’ve been moved to the side) which did nothing to help if anyone from the bands wanted to join things in the middle of the crowd. Enough of that, now onto Roam.

No matter what, this band always gives one hundred per cent. I’ve seen them play a handful of times and they’re always getting better fan reception and that in turn comes from the releases they have. This tour was also in support of their latest record, ‘Smile Wide’ which came out in September 2019 where you see this is them refining their sound and stepping away from the more Pop-Punk side of things but them finding who they are and this translates into them live as well. ‘Hand Grenade’, ‘Pirhana’ and ‘Playing Fiction (Which I do realise is off their second record, ‘Great Heights & Nosedives’ but it shows how they’re responding to being on tour for so long and just how they operate when it comes to their production. Now, things can only go up for the band because while they’re still getting a few pits going and some stage dives from members, what they’ve done for these opening bands is just so important because everyone who goes along now has no excuse to not go to one of their local venues. They’re showing that the scene is more than just the venue and there’s so much potential out there at the moment.



Some of their older and punchier tracks such as ‘Deadweight, ‘Hopeless Case’ and ‘Alive’ were all met with good applause which also produced some of the better moments of their set. Roam might be more atypical of the contemporary artists but they will always belong to the Pop Punk and Rock families.

Rating: 5/10

Live Review: Northshore @ Think Tank Underground

Date: 15/02/19

Support: Hartsink, Wrthless, Northern Horizon

The North East. Full of industry, Football and music. It’s no secret that this region of the country is dependant on its influx of musicians and of late, the Think Tank, O2 Academy are the most common venues for fans of the Rock and Pop Punk communities. Some are slow starters but these days here, everyone comes down early to get the full experience of the shows.

The first band of the evening are Heartsink but there’s a twist to their set. It’s all acoustic and it’s their frontman Zac Roughton playing solo. His performance is a charming rendition of the tracks which have made the Yorkshire band what it is but acoustically, there’s just something more which makes it as charming and basic as it can be. I don’t mean to make it as if it’s a bad thing, it’s a wonderful thing and just opens the gig to so much namely, that everyone else on the night has to step up.

Wrthless do just that on their sets. They do help elevate the atmosphere to an extent but one that does get people excited for what’s to come later on the night. Not to say that it wasn’t the best performance that was given but it’s a brightly polished view of what the Scottish Pop-Punkers can do and from here they help showcase that Scotland has a lot to offer than the usual Pop-Rock which is exported from the isles.

Northern Horizon, on the other hand, are just beaming with confidence and for good reason as well. They deliver through their set, a performance that’s entertaining for everyone, especially with their news that they will be disbanding soon. It’s one that’s a shame because they have the makings of a great band. They have chemistry with each other, infectious music and a crowd who just want to see more. Nevertheless, they don’t let that fact impact the performance in any way as they storm through their set, even getting the crowd involved at certain times when they invite two members who know their track as well. Their performance is one that people won’t forget too soon, that’s for sure.

Northshore have had numerous setbacks in recent years. I think they said it’s taken them about four years to get their debut EP, ‘For What It’s Worth’ made because of numerous setbacks and a few lineup changes. But now, it’s out there upon the world and the band couldn’t be happier and for fans on the night, they had the same feeling as well. For tracks such as ‘Be Heard’ and ‘For What It’s Worth’, (the title track of the EP) they prove to be real crowd pleasers where you can feel just how long they’ve been waiting to play live. What’s more, is how well the tracks were received as a few tracks have been released as singles to tease everyone for the full product, smaller bands don’t usually get the reception they deserve when playing a release show. In this case, it couldn’t be anything but as they show just how much of a force they are to be reckoned with. What’s for sure is you’ll be hearing a lot more from Northshore in 2019 as they continue to make this their year.


Music Videos 11/11/18

Hello everybody! Welcome to another entry in the Music Video top ten list. If you’re new to the posts then this is how it goes down. Every week, I find ten of the best music video releases out there and put them into a convenient list for everyone to enjoy. Let’s get started!

First band up in the list is Dance Gavin Dance! The band released their eighth record, ‘Artificial Selection’ last week and now have released a new entry in their ‘Robot With Human Hair’ series with a new addition in the form of, ‘Son Of Robot’


Teesside’s own Northshore are making a name for themselves on the up and coming markets. “For What It’s Worth” is the first single and title track from their upcoming EP, which is due for release February 15th.


Now, just before a UK will commence with the people in Ghost Bath, Danish band MOL have a new release with the title track of their debut record, ‘Jord’.


Another video to go with touring. Ahead of their first headline tour of the UK, Melbourne (Yes, another Aussie band) based Pagan have a very colourful track for the aptly named, ‘Imitate Me’. It’s off their full-length record, ‘Black Wash’ which was released earlier this year.


Back to Britain now, we’re going for InMe for the next choice of video. They have their seventh record, ‘Jumpstart Hope’ ready to unleash upon the world and they have a preview for you in ‘For Something To Happen’.


Onwards from a sold out co-headline London show at Thousand Island, Metalcore up and comers TheCityIsOurs have dropped a new video for a fantastic single, ‘Casket’.


London based group Calva Louise have been making a few announcements as of late. From their upcoming record to tour dates, there had to be a new music video. ‘I Heard A Cry” is complete with an energetic street chase and matches the liveliness of the track itself.


Now we get to Ohio for emo vets Hawthorne Heights. They’re busy at the moment supporting Silverstein on their ‘When Broken Is Easily Fixed’ 15th Anniversary tour but they have a new video out for ‘Crimson Sand’.


Memphis May Fire have a new record out very very soon and the Post-Hardcore/ Metalcore favourites have shared a brand new single out in celebration. ‘The Old Me: sees vocalist Matty Mullins covering up his wrongdoings when he tries to bury a body when the unexpected happens.


Lastly, we’re going for Yorkshire based band Heartsink. They’re doing pretty well for themselves at the moment and they have a fantastic new track in the form of “Same Old Lies” which was produced by the fantastic Sleepless Productions. Let’s take a look


And that’s it for another round of music videos for a week. Be sure to check out my other posts for music news, photo galleries of recent shows and interviews with musicians. I’ll see you next week everyone.

A Conversation With… Heartsink

This next band is one I’ve had the pleasure of seeing, especially since I was there for the unveiling of their new name. What was once One Way Street is now Heartsink, the collective Pop-Punkers from York. I did plan to speak to them at a previous gig a few months ago but circumstances meant I had to wait to chat to them on the last day at Pop Punk Pile Up.


Zak: First we have to say Ben is filling in for Jake today because he’s in Croatia at the moment.

Bryn: He’s in the sunshine, just not as cold as this though.

Zak: He’s just done a Game of Thrones set tour as well, and in a Liverpool bar at the moment. A Scouse bar in Croatia.

Jack: In Croatia of all places? It’s like going to London and finding a Geordie bar.

Zac: He sniffs out a Wetherspoons like a dog.

Bryn: He has a radar. He just sniffs them out and says this way.

Zak: He does have a book on Weatherspoon’s carpets as well.

Jack: That has to be an interesting but dull read

Tom: What did you get for Christmas? A book carpets.

Zac: Brilliant


Jack: So Pop Punk Pile Up?

Bryn: It feels really good to not only have played but to have been asked to play.

Zac: Adams put a lot of effort in.

Tom: The boys done good.

Bryn: And Ben did amazing on drums for us today.

Jack: Ben reminds me of someone from a film, I can’t put my finger on it.

Zac: A young tom cruise?

Bryn: I could see it.

Tom: Something from the eighties?

Jack: No Patrick Stewart was in it.

Zac: Oh that was green something…. Er…

Bryn: Green Room!

Jack: That’s it! From the punk band, the lead singer he reminds me of. But I was at the gig in December for the name change, what was the main reason?

Zac: It was an entirely different band now, new members and it felt right to do moving forward.

Jack: Well you’ve got a new drummer.

Bryn: Yeah we’re going to let Jake down easy.

Jack: Well he is your brother so there’ll be some tension around the Christmas table or some drake and josh style escapade. I imagine that was what your whole life was like growing up, just Drake and Josh.

Zac: No, it was more Zack and Cody but yeah, the name change, new lineup, new songs and new progression.

Tom: We’re doing a new music video in the next month or so.

Jack: I’ll keep my eyes and my ears peeled for that. And has there been anything new in the production?

Zac: Funnily enough, Ben produces all of our songs, mixes master.

Ben: Now brings the equipment and the talent brings it to a new level and I’m looking forward to producing some new stuff with them.


Jack: And is there anyone you’d love to tour with?

Zak: We’ve toured with a lot of bands but to be honest, Lyon Estates. I’d love to go back out with Better Days.

Bryn: We could do a full tour with Lyon Estates and all the bands Jonny Gill’s in you know? Jonny fest.

Jack: What was the first gig you remember going to?

Zak: The Darkness.

Jack: That’s a good alternative group to start with, I personally would’ve guessed Blink 182 from what I know about you.

Tom: What do you think mine was?

Zac: Rolling Stones?

Tom: Bearing in mind it was in 1997. It was Radiohead and DJ Shadow. It was at the Manchester 9x when it was called that.


Bryn: See I did the thing with seeing a lot of local bands, there was winder gardens and submarines, a lot of obscure places and bands but I think it was sponge, a really old Ska band.

Zac: The first big band was probably Biffy Clyro. I just wanted to sound cool by saying the darkness when they’re you’re cooler alternative.

Jack: mine was when The Duchess was still open a Halloween show, beyond all reason and RSJ and two weeks later, my dad took me to see Paramore.

Bryn: You’ve been recently haven’t you?

Zac: That was a really good gig.

Jack: I was just really happy to have seen them

Zak: What’s your’s ben? That’s something I’ve never asked you.

Ben: I didn’t start until I was 18 and I think my first was lees fest 2003. It was one of the most awesome Leeds fest lineups ever. I think there was InMe, Bowling For Soup, Linkin Park, Blink 182, Jay-Z

Bryn: Is that when Leeds fest played bands and not DJ’s?

Zac: It’s just a changing crowd now

Ben: I really wanted to see blink 182 and we watched slipknot beforehand and my girlfriend at the time broke her ankle so we had to go to a medical tent and I was sat thinking youuuuu. I sat there then asked can I go? And she said you can if you want and I went, alright see you. In hindsight I was horrible though but yeah.


Jack: And if you could sum up heartsink in three words what would they be?

Bryn: I think there are some words we wouldn’t allow Zak to say.

Zac: Erm.. I’d say anthemic, although that’s more an aspiration for us.

Bryn: I’d say 75% of us are organized but really fun, anytime you get to play music with your friends is a blessing in itself, where it goes it’s just a laugh and if we get the recognition that’s a plus.

Bryn: Money’s a nice thing but creating memories is more important to us.

Tom: I’d say chunky, about the sound

Bryn: I think that’s my addition to be honest.

Ben: We have the heavy breakdowns and stuff which has progressed, depends on the various guises

Jack: Various guises? Like Altered Sky with the beginning of their set?

Zac: Oh did Ana bring the plague mask out? I remember playing with them last year and I thought what’s going on?

Bryn: Coming to cleanse the building?

I started playing with you after I came on tour with, then they were just like do you wanna play guitar for us?

Zac: It took him a few months to say yes to us.

Jack: Were you just asking him at all hours of the night?

Zac: It was more of an internal struggle for him

Bryn: We just share members of every band now.

Bryn: It as like the same thing you said about Pile Up like on Friday it was so nice because all the bands knew each other like. Reunion and community but it’s just really nice and today it’s the same with the community and today a few have been coming up from the south, but we’ve been playing with them anyway The Young Harts and Counterpoint are really good and everyone knows each other.

Tom: We still need to say three words to describe us.

Bryn: Oh yeah.

Bryn: So chunky, anthemic, and erm… remember that list of words we gave you not to say?

Zac: Just fun isn’t it?

Tom: Colourful.

Bryn: And that’s just Zak’s hair.


You can listen to Heartsink’s track ‘Last Year’ below.