When you think of Cheshire, the music scene isn’t always what first springs to mind. Sandwiched between Greater Manchester and Merseyside, those two counties often overshadow their shared neighbour, but delve into each town in Cheshire and you’ll find little pockets of buzzing musical talent just waiting to be discovered.
Here’s a rundown of some of the most exciting Cheshire acts creating some major noise:
Abi Rose Kelly
Warrington singer Abi Rose Kelly got shortlisted for this year’s Glastonbury Emerging Talent competition off the back of just two singles, debut ‘James’ Corsa’ and follow-up ‘Polaroids & Violence’. Gut-wrenching vocals and slacker grunge guitars have firmly positioned her as Cheshire’s answer to Angel Olsen.
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Georgia Rae K
Georgia Rae K infuses jazz, funk and pop to give life to her music, topping it all off with some seriously sultry vocals that make her a truly captivating upcoming pop star. Her debut EP G was released earlier in 2020, with most tracks focusing on her journey to self love after overcoming some personal battles. If you want an empowering listen to soundtrack your day, then you’ve found it.
Runcorn trio Spilt caught the eyes and ears of many when they were picked to support American punks Fidlar on their UK tour dates a couple of years ago, and since then they’ve scored a record deal with Jacaranda Records. Heavy drum beats and fierce vocals tear through each track in their back catalogue, generating a forceful psychedelic grunge sound and a real in-your-face experience.
Cathy Jain’s latest single ‘Green Screen’ is a beautiful example of the standard of her songwriting; a blissful listening experience that could have you mistaking her as an old hand on the music scene. In actual fact she’s one of the newer acts on this list, releasing alt-pop harmonies from her bedroom since the beginning of 2020. Her music has already been featured on the likes of Radio One and she’s showing no signs of slowing down, cementing her as one to watch in 2021.
Pray For Mojo
With only one release under their belt at the moment - the ferocious ‘Chokahontas’ - Pray For Mojo have been generating quite the buzz around the Cheshire scene. The band team their erratic garage punk music with accompanying visuals by local artist Eaten Alive Illustrations, shaping something that is much more than just the music. If their raucous debut live show was anything to go by, this band are one you can’t miss out on once gigs start taking place again.
Brit-hop rapper That’s Juvey? aka Ellesmere Port, born Kyle Owen, found recognition as part of hip hop collective Chedeye Knights, a network of North West producers and rappers all intent on pulling focus to the area. He also boasts a mentorship with UK pioneer Loyle Carner, who encouraged him to continue creating the old school hip-hop sound narrating everyday life that people have come to love of That’s Juvey?. His two EPs Clinically Messy and Sunbathing In The Apocalypse are an innovative, breathtaking collection of lyrics, samples and chilled beats.
Taking inspiration from a multitude of genres, Seagoth has been cultivating her sound over a number of releases. While her debut release House Party For Ghosts gives off a more DIY indie-pop vibe, more recent singles ‘Dreamworld’ and ‘Ballad For The End Of The World’ see her experimenting with sampling, looping and altogether more psychedelic, dreamy sounds.
Man & The Echo
Two albums in, Man & The Echo have built up a real cult following by reflecting on everything from the mundane, to the morbid, to the ridiculous. Their second LP Men Of The Moment is a sardonic commentary on the state of the nation and populism through witty, engaging lyrics and hooky guitars. It’s the gritty, blunt storytelling about the modern day alpha male that led them to team up with artist and satirist Cold War Steve for the album’s artwork, and has secured their place as one of the most enthralling acts around Cheshire.
The self-dubbed “rock n roll crackerjacks” have been shaking up the entire county with some riotous sounds for the past few years but have recently kicked a hole in the music scene with their debut EP. We Are The Lotts is an infectious insight into their world, and with an average track length of two minutes their garage punk explosions make an unforgettable impact.
Stirring soul infused r&b singer Caiine has been making music since childhood, but it wasn’t until 2017 that she began releasing her mellow, synth-based alternative pop tunes into the world. Her most recent single, ‘Drown’ graced the airwaves on BBC Radio 1 and earlier in the year she earned a spot as an official showcase artist at the acclaimed SXSW Festival.
The A.V. Club
80s inspired band The A.V. Club create indie pop bangers with nostalgic synthwave undertones. The group released their debut EP Youthful Illusions earlier in 2020 and were a favourite for John Kennedy on Radio X over the summer. The band also built their own recording and production studio Matchbox Productions this autumn, with the vision to provide a space for acts all over the North West to develop their sound.
Lo-fi drum beats, glittering guitars and satin sweet vocals form Duvet’s debut track ‘Running Around In Circles’, released back in July. Their intriguing social media presence doesn’t give too much away about them, but their scintillating dreampop vibes make you eager to hear more from the band.
Hailing from Chester, indie pop trio Peaness have become a rising favourite for many in recent years. Previously working with the likes of Alcopop! Records, the band’s sharp lyrics and sanguine guitar melodies make it feel like summer is here to stay, even on the most miserable days of the year. Check out their most recent single release ‘Kaizen’: it’s an unforgettable indie pop bop.