ABoF Staff Picks at The Great Escape!

Ah The Great Escape Festival, that time when the streets of Brighton are suddenly even busier than usual and its even more acceptable to roam the streets with a can in your hand. This year's prestigious event hosts another truck load of talent including the likes of Slaves, Kano, The Magic Gang and Superfood to name but a few. With the festival now imminent, we here at team ABoF have selected some of the artists we'd highly recommend checking out this year...



They were on the ABoF roster a few years back and I’m still in love with this band. Catch them on Thursday, 18th May at Sticky Mike's Frog Bar at 2.30pm and at Latest Music Bar at 1.15pm.

Honey Lung

Honey Lung have kind of creeped up on me in the last 6-months and I’ve dug everything they’ve put out so far. These guys are great. Catch them at Bleach on Friday, 19th May at 8.30pm.

Noga Erez

I’ve got a major girl crush on Noga Erez - such a talented musician and producer! Catch Noga Erez at Komedia Studio, Friday 19th May at 10.30pm.


Be Charlotte

One of Scotland's most exciting talents, Be Charlotte have been making waves all over the world with their innovative sound. A sound that incorporates pop, beatbox, hip-hop, indie pop and electro. Their live performances are electric and certainly one worth catching at TGE. Catch be Charlotte at at the Brighthelm Centre on Thursday 18th May at 3.30pm and at Komedia Studio on Saturday 20th May at 1.15pm.

Maria Kelly

Indie folk singer songwriter has such a poignant, ethereal sound. Her delivery has a purity and grace that effortlessly pulls you in. There is a fragility to her voice that allows Maria to create a well of emotion through every single lyric she delivers. Catch Maria Kelly at The Hope & Ruin on Thursday 18th May at 1.45pm.


The garagepop vibes flowing from female duo Gurr is a must see at TGE. Lo-fi chiming guitars and vocal harmonies akin to 80's female pop heavyweights of the past blend together to create catchy melodic contemporary indie rock. Catch them on Thursday, 18th May at Sticky Mike's Frog Bar at 3.30pm and at Green Dorr Store at 9.15pm.


Aine Cahill

This girl's haunting voice is absolutely stunning. Already a huge hit in her home country Ireland, she is definitely one to watch for 2017.Catch Aine Cahill at One Church on Friday, 19th May at 10.30pm.

Tired Lion

I stumbled across this band completely by accident but I'm so glad I did. Hailing from Perth, Australia, these guys are full of energy, bolshy guitars and all around fun. Catch them on Thursday, 18th May at Komedia at 12.50pm, on Friday 19th May at Bleach at 10.30pm and again on Saturday, 20th May in Patterns at 12.50pm.


I've been following Amelia Murray aka Fazerdaze for a while now and am so glad to see that she's back in Brighton for The Great Escape. Bedroom dream-pop at its best. Catch them on Thursday, 18th May at Queen's Hotel at 1.30pm and again at The Arch at 11.30pm.


The Van T’s

They are going to be huge. Their melodies, tenacity, musicianship in general and approach to what they do is notable. I look forward to see them in stadiums serving people their dinner. From Scotland and probably in the top 10 bands playing Great Escape this year. I am far from biased, this is a true story. Catch them at the Brighthelm Centre on Thursday 18th May at 2.30pm and again at Sticky Mike's Frog Bar at 7.30pm.


Everyone is talking about Sigrid. The Norwegian artist has the hooks. She is like a Robyn for the next generation. Norway is producing some of the best music in the world right now and she illustrates why. This is quality pop. Lyrically, this is also a strong two fingers up at everyone in your life you need to get rid of. It’s defiant and beautiful. Catch her on Thursday, 18th May at Coalition at 8pm and again at Wagner Hall at 4.30pm on Friday the 19th.

Eat Fast

My favourite band of 2016. They fill a really big gap in terms of harsh, relentless alt rock. Every single song they have released is a banger. From Newcastle and two of them used to be in the incredible Let’s Buy Happiness. I thank God they are doing well, as they are guitar music, they are new ambassadors for guitar music and they show guitar music is far from dead. Catch them live on Friday, 19th May at Horatio's at 8.15pm and again at 7.15pm on Saturday, 20th May.


L. A Salami

Lookman Adekunle Salami conveys poetic words and emotional messages through the beauty of folk and soul. I first heard of him in 2014 when he released ‘Nazi’s on the Northern Line’ and since then never questioned his ability to produce such beauty through creative story telling. Melancholic tones like his are what attract me to folk music and make me want to write in a similar vein. Catch him at the Fender Paramount Stage on Thursday, 18th May at 2pm and again at the Unitarian Church at 9.30pm.

Wild Front

There aren’t many British bands that give me the same ‘feels’ as Wild Front. They create emotional music that swings towards an american influenced sound - ambient and lo-fi whilst being boisterous and epic from song to song. Wild Front are obviously a band that has spent some time together musically and deserve all the attention they’re getting at the moment. I hope they continue to do what they do. Catch them at The Hope & Ruin on Thursday, 18th May at 3.15pm.

Marika Hackman

Ever since I first heard the eerie harmonies and rhythmic sounds of ‘Deep Green’ I’ve been hooked on Marika Hackman. I haven’t had a “pop crush” on anyone since the Avril Lavigne days (get over it I was 12/13), but this girl just oozes talent and a sense of coolness that only perspires from the greats. Her new single ‘Violet’ is one of her best yet as Marika tends to have a great ear for unusual harmonies that send shivers down your spine. I would love to see this girl live! Catch her at Paganini Ballroom on Thursday, 18th May at 8.15pm.


Baby Queens

I recently saw the Cardiff collective of awesome women supporting The Orielles at The Social and was completely blown away! I just can’t get enough of their smooth soulful vocals, gorgeous grooves, utterly flawless harmonies and empowering vibes. Catch them on Friday at Latest Music Bar at 2.15pm or Jubilee Square at 7.30pm.

Pip Blom

Following the success of last year’s EP Are We There Yet?, Amsterdam-based artist Pip Blom has received acclaim from the likes of Huw Stephens on Radio 1 and a whole load of love and multiple airplays from BBC 6 Music’s Marc Riley. I just love her jangly, lilting melodies and scuzzy vocals. She'll be playing on Friday at Komedia at 2.30pm and Brighthelm Centre at 8.30pm

Teen Canteen

I recently heard a live session with the Scottish band on Marc Riley's show on 6 Music, and it was love at first listen. Creating epically catchy, twinkling indie-pop anthems oozing the distinctive, sultry vocals of Carla Easton, they're definite ones to watch this year. They'll be live at Brighthelm Centre at 12.15pm on Friday and in Jubilee Square at 2.30pm on Saturday.

Check out our Spotify playlist below:

Posted Wed, 17 May 2017

Record Store Day 2017

It's that time of year again; the time when we queue for hours outside our favourite shop to get our hands on some exclusive shiny round discs. Celebrating its 10th year, Record Store Day 2017 sees an array of special re-releases, a hefty selection of live recordings and an abundance of exciting brand new singles and EPs. What's not to love?! With some of the most prominent names on the list including Iggy Pop, David Bowie (numerous times), Dolly Parton, Fleetwood Mac and even The Beatles, team ABoF have chosen some of the releases we're most excited about this year...


Mew - Frengers (1LP)
Unbelievably released fourteen years ago this month, Frengers is still an absolutely cracking album that I still listen to today. Mew are one of my favourite bands and I think this record still stands up today despite the band cultivating a more mature, honed sound as they have progressed through each album.

Sugar - Copper Blue (3LP)
Sugar’s enduring presence on the alt-rock scene and the bands it spawned is borne out through this timeless record. Led by Hüsker Dü’s Bob Mould, Copper Blue is a fantastic record from start to finish with tracks like ‘Changes’, ‘A Good Idea’, ‘Helpless’ and ‘Hoover Dam’ not only standing out, but illustrating their influence on contemporary alternative rock bands.


Baby Metal - Metal Resistence (V12x2)
This is Baby Metal’s second album, which was released last year. I’m a sucker for a massive riff and I’ve been quite secretly captivated by the Japanese metal idol band since their debut in 2014.

Coheed & Cambria - Good Apollo I'm Burning Star IV (x2 LP Vinyl)
The first time I came across Coheed & Cambria was the video for ‘Welcome Home’ on MTV2 (yes, when MTV actually played alternative music!). I didn’t know quite what I was listening to but I liked it and I’ve got a major soft spot for an epic rock tune (being a huge Queen fan, would you expect anything less?). I thought I’d inject a little prog into ABoF’s RSD list - bring the metal!


The Cribs - Men's Needs, Women's Needs, Whatever (LP)
I’m not that up to speed with The Cribs’ newest material, but this album was the first I’d heard of them and definitely played a part in the soundtrack of my teenage years. Filled with jangly guitars and that signature noughties indie sound, I will always feel nostalgic listening to this record. Personal favourites include ‘Girls Like Mystery’, ‘I’ve Tried Everything’ and ‘Ancient History’.

Mungo’s Hi Fi ft. Johnny Clarke - Rain Keeps Falling (7")
I was introduced to Mungo’s Hi Fi when I was at university as they were quickly becoming regulars on the Brighton live circuit. These guys always put on an incredible show and have collaborated with some awesome artists. This new release with Johnny Clarke, from what I’ve heard, sounds like another feel-good reggae tune with Johnny Clarke’s smooth, warm vocals blending in perfectly. Summer needs to hurry the hell up now please!


Goldie - Inner City Life (12")
I was and am obsessed with Bjork, and through being a fan of her I was turned onto Goldie back in 1995. I then started to develop a really big love of trip hop and drum n bass in general. This is a seminal track and really made a lot of people sit up as did his album Timeless. It seemed to bridge the gap between the mainstream and the more underground and sometimes harder to access aspects of the drum n bass genre. The fact that there is a Burial remix of this as well on this release just makes it a must buy.

Super Furry Animals - International Language Of Screaming (7" Coloured Vinyl)
I have a tattoo of this band on my foot. That’s how much I love them. They are quirky, colourful, clever, funny, dynamic, innovative and one of the best bands to ever have come out of the UK. End of.


The The - You Can't Stop What's Coming (7")
Ever since I heard the song ‘Uncertain Smile’ from the 1983 album Soul Mining, I knew I’d fallen in love with The The. Their unusual mix of new romantic '80s reverb and world instrumentals, along with vocal melodies that are easy to repeat, You Can’t Stop What’s Coming can’t come soon enough for me.

Pineapple Express (Various Artists) (2x12"LP)
This movie is definitely in my top ten comedies of all time and the soundtrack certainly does it justice. With absolute classics like Eddy Grant's ‘Electric Avenue’ and Cypress Hill’s ‘Dr. Greenthumb’, you go on a journey with Franco and Rogen into “Stonerville”. Grade A baker's paradise.


Elastica - Elastica (LP + Flexidisc + Fanzine)
Although I was only ten when this album was originally released, classics such as ‘Connection’ and ‘Stutter’ accompanied my teendom and beyond, with ‘Waking Up’ becoming somewhat of a personal anthem over the years. I think Justine Frischmann and co. first came to my attention when I saw ‘Waking Up’ on an episode TOTP, with none other than Damon Albarn appearing on keys/posing; and that was it – I was instantly in awe of the immense sense of cool that oozed from the three guitar-wielding women on stage.

The Duke Spirit - Serenade (12" EP)
Having been a long-term fan of The Duke Spirit (but falling even more in love with them since being blown away by their completely captivating sets at Field Day and The Scala last year), it would be pretty dreamy to own this EP on vinyl. Filled with four sweeping, cinematic creations, including the utterly beguiling title track, this EP showcases front-woman Liela Moss' enthralling power perfectly. Plus it's pink. A must have.

The View - Hats Off To The Buskers (1LP)
Filled with one catchy indie-rock anthem after another, the debut album from Dundee's The View is now a decade old. To celebrate, the band are re-releasing this exclusive version on transparent vinyl, with limited edition original artwork to match. Originally hitting the number one spot in the UK charts in 2007, the album introduced the world to the band’s upbeat, observational indie-rock and frontman Kyle Falconer’s signature youthful energy and proudly emphatic Scottish vocals. So, put on some old jeans and turn this up loud.

Check out all the releases at the Record Store Day website and have a listen to AboF's Record Store Day 2017 playlist here:

Posted Fri, 21 Apr 2017 in The View The Duke Spirit

ABoF Staff Picks of the Month!

Every month Daniel blogs about what Team ABoF are listening to in the office - the non-ABoF bands that are rocking our worlds.

It's that time of the month where we at A Badge of Friendship are here to give you a taste of what we're listening to. Whether in the office, on public transport or in the comfort of our own homes, here are the tracks that we, the ABoF team have had on repeat for the past month or so. Finally, 2016 is over and we can start getting on with our lives and make a fresh start as 2017 can’t get any worse than last year, which is why (at least in my head) I’m optimistic about this year and the music yet to be released.

Here are some great tracks that we named our top picks for January:


Homeshake - Every Single Thing

Jay Som - The Bus Song

Spoon - Hot Thoughts


WHY? - Proactive Evolution

Antonio Williams // Kerry McCoy - Dark Denim

Pile - Texas


Beach For Tiger - Black Buddha

Penelope Isles - Cut Your Hair

Loyle Carner - Damselfly


Agnes Obel - Its Happening Again

Bonobo - Bambro Koyo Ganda feat. Innov Ganda

Sleaford Mods - BHS


Blond Maze - Antarctica

Dream Nails - Deep Heat

Young Romance - Wasting Time


The Shins - Name For You

Japandroids - No Known Drink Or Drug

Wilsen - Centipede

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Posted Fri, 20 Jan 2017

ABoF Staff Picks of the Month!

It's that time of the month where we at A Badge of Friendship are here to give you a taste of what we're listening to. Whether in the office, on public transport or in the comfort of our own homes, here are the tracks that we, the ABoF team have had on repeat for the past month or so.

You can listen to the playlist in its entirety here:

You can see who picked what here:


Taylor Hawkins - Range Rover Bitch
Sasha & the Bear - See Me As I Am
GUM - Gemini


True Widow - F W T S L T M
Grails - Chalice Hymnal
Antonio Williams // Kerry McCoy - Changes


Superglu - Dreams
Elli Schoen - Mumma
The Dig - Simple Love


Heavy Heart - The Way Home
Anohni - Marrow
Cabbage - Uber Captalist Death Trade


Local Natives - Villainy
DYAN - Looking For Knives
Wild Nothing - Lady Blue


Deep Throat Choir - Be Ok
Low - Some Hearts (At Christmas Time)
The Muffin Heads - Queen Bitch

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Posted Thu, 15 Dec 2016

ABoF November Playlist!

Starting from November, we’re putting together a monthly playlist of some of the best releases from our current roster.

November’s playlist features an array of artists. There's 90s inspired grunge from Glasgow band The Van T’s and folk from Nottingham’s Gallery 47. Each playlist gives you an idea of just how diverse the A Badge of Friendship roster is from month to month, something we’re very proud of and glad to share with you now.

November tracklist:

The Van T's - Fun Garcon
Hawk - Mirror Maze
Stars and Rabbit - Man Upon The Hill
Freja Frances - Breathe
Chris James - Stairs Up To The Sun
Rootwork - Trust
ISLE - Faults
The Empty Page - Turbulance
Sam Brockington - Manta Ray
Chris James - Space In The Clouds feat. DM Smith
Polsky - Halycon Daze
Vienna Ditto - Busted Flush
Gallery 47 - Mother's Plan
Rainbrother - Riverside
K V A S I R - First Throws
Black International - Shining Swords
We Came From Wolves - Places Unfamiliar
Animal House - Domino
Freja Frances - Porcelain Doll
Tokyo Taboo - N.A.R.C.I.S.M.
Outblinker - Hallogallo
Lowla - Electrified
Melissa Bel - In The Light
Crash Club - Pennydrop
When Tomorrow Becomes Yesterday (Jo Mango) - If I Could Choose
The Imagineers - Utopian Dreams
GANGS - Dance With Your Own Bones
Sam Brockington - Peace of Mind

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