A “new music” TV show?!

12 Apr

Last Thursday, I was invited along to the filming of Evo Music Rooms. It’s a new music show on Channel Four in a similar vein to Transmission and a better dressed brother/sister of Jools ‘boogie woogie’ Holland. The show has a weekly headliner who then chooses the other bands on the bill.

As well as that, the show recently launched an online competition for unsigned bands. The top six bands will get to appear on the show (and on TV obviously) which is something that no music show has ever done before. It’s refreshing to see a music show try and give bands support at such an early stage.

Music TV has become somewhat dull in the past few years because it rarely offers anything new. Take festival coverage for example. Most festivals tend to have the same headliners/main acts year on year. Understandably so because the majority of the people that go to festivals/watch them on TV are going to be drawn to the more well known bands but how many more times do we have to watch Kasabian perform ‘Fire’ or Snow Patrol perform ‘Run’ in a summer?!

As a die hard music fan (no, I’m not talking about the soundtracks to Die Hard), if I can’t make a particular festival, the lack of TV coverage of the bands I really want to see makes my lack of attendance even harder to swallow. Sure, I can watch Lady Gaga’s set on the red button for a week after the festival from the comfort of my armchair but what chance do I have of seeing King Charles perform one song on the Introducing stage? None whatsoever.

I understand that I am a ‘minority’ in that I seek out new music and that broadcasters would lose a lot of viewers if they put all my favourite bands on a TV show but nevertheless, it is refreshing to see Evo Music Rooms take the approach that new bands are the future and getting people aware of a music scene that exists beyond what’s reported in the mainstream media.

I was invited along by one of the winners of the competition, I Am Austin who are a scuzzy duo from North Wales who made energetic math/dance rock and are huge fans of bands like Queens of the Stone Age, the much missed Death From Above 1979 and The Music. They’re going to be on the show this Thursday on Channel 4 alongside the legend that is Graham Coxon, dance routine new kid on the block destined for great things by everyone Darwin Deez and the band so very close to ‘doing a White Lies’ Bombay Bicycle Club.

The set looked great. I’ll be honest though, TV show filmings are a bit cringeworthy it has to be said. Everyone is told when to applaud and when to stop applauding. The bands have to play the same song over and over again until they get it right and it’s all very awkward as they move cameras around and Edith Bowman has to redo her links again and again. Not to mention the free beer only applies to two bottles. Pfft. That’s the worst part of the evening right there!

But, Graham Coxon, Darwin Deez, Bombay Bicycle Club and I Am Austin on your screens this Thursday. If those bands don’t excite you, watch anyway, I’m in the crowd somewhere sporting a leather jacket which simply must be seen. “Check your local listings” as Americans would say.

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