Thursday, 16 August 2012

Lemon Pop festival: Murcia, Spain

Lemon Pop is an annual outdoor festival held in Murcia, Spain which has been running since 1996. This year's takes place on 6-8 September 2012 and entry is free! We're playing on the Saturday night and we're really excited about it!

The full line up is: Nosoträsh, Las Ruedas, The Sounds of Arrows, Sala & The Strange Sound, Dolores, Doble Pletina, Lidia Damunt, Pocketbooks, Cut Your Hair, La Familia del árbol, Perro, Unlikes, Varry Brava, Ross, Tórtel and Nunatak.

There's a programme and lots more details on their facebook page:

Wednesday, 30 May 2012

New videos from Carousel

Back in January, we recorded a few live videos at Blackburn College for the Art and Music website. We posted a three-song session a few months ago, but we found time to record a couple of extra songs too. Both of the following songs appear on our recent album Carousel.

Here's the video for Sound Of The Carnival:

And here's the video for Sparklers:

Hope you enjoy the videos!

Tuesday, 1 May 2012

Shows in London, Paris and Congleton

We’ve got a few shows coming up over the next couple of weeks, including our first trip to France, a weekend festival in London and an indiepop alldayer in Cheshire.

Saturday 5 May, Odd Box Weekender – London
Odd Box Records has arranged a spectacular two-day festival in London on the May bank holiday weekend. Bands playing include Standard Fare, Milky Wimpshake, The Blanche Hudson Weekend, Sparky’s Magic Piano, The Middle Ones, Anguish Sandwich, Magoo and Sock Puppets.

There’s a free download compilation featuring the 19 bands playing over the weekend, which you can pick up here as a zip file: Odd Box Weekender 2012 compilation

We’re playing on the Saturday evening at the Windmill in Brixton. All the details and tickets are available here: Odd Box Weekender 2012  

Saturday 12 May: Another Sunny Night – Paris

Our first show in France will take place at L’international in Paris along with Stars in Coma and Dorian Pimpernel.

It’s a free show organised by the lovely people at Another Sunny Night and we’re really looking forward to it! All the details are available on this Songkick page: Another Sunny Night - 12 May

Saturday 2 June: Going Up The Country – Congleton, Cheshire

This is a charity indiepop day in aid of the Christie's hospital in Manchester organised by Cherry Coloured Pop and Cherryade Records. It takes place in the grounds of the Church House, which is a lovely pub in the Cheshire countryside.

Bands playing include The School, A Fine Day For Sailing, The Hobbes Fanclub, The Proctors, A Little Orchestra and The Fireworks. There will also be an acoustic tent, a disco, real ale and nice food!

All the details and tickets are available on Songkick: Going Up The Country 2012

Hope to see you at one of the shows!

Monday, 5 March 2012

El Planeta Amarillo festival in Murcia, Spain

On Saturday 17 March we'll be playing our first show in Spain at the El Planeta Amarillo festival in Murcia!

El Planeta Amarillo is a radio show presented by Rafa Skam and Isabel Cañabate, playing indie-pop, avant-garde, folk, post-rock, techno-pop and more. It's on Pulsa Radio on the FM in Spain, or you can listen at Their one-day festival is part of Microsonidos 2012 which takes place in Murcia from 27 January to 27 April 2012. Other bands playing at Microsonidos include Gruff Rhys, Hidden Cameras, Jonathan Richman, BMX Bandits, Josh Rouse, Papercuts and more.

The full line-up on 17 March will be: Pocketbooks, The Felt Tips, Vacaciones, Minibar, The Yellow Melodies and Zipper. There'll also be DJ sets from Colour Me Pop, DJ Miguelink and Ruth Vacaciones. It all takes places at 12&Medio in Murcia. Doors open at 10.45pm (eek!) and entry is completely free!

Before we head to Spain, we're playing at the Buffalo Bar in London on Thursday 8 March. It's a Guided Missile night to raise money for the Frank Sidebottom Statue Fund, and we're playing with The Wolfhounds and Laetitia Sadier (Stereolab). Tickets are cheaper in advance from WeGotTickets.

Hope to see you in London or Spain later this month!

Wednesday, 22 February 2012

Art & Music video session

In January we recorded three songs as a video session for Art & Music magazine. We'd like to thank Jamie Holman and the students at Blackburn College for recording the songs in their media centre.

Hope you enjoy the video!

Pocketbooks from Media Centre on Vimeo. The songs played are Falling Leaves, Harbour Lights and Love Is The Stick You Throw.

Tuesday, 20 December 2011

Carousel reviews

As 2011 is coming to a close, we thought we’d round up a few of the nice quotes found among the reviews of our recent album Carousel.

Obviously, we’ve picked out just the nicest things people have said, and we’ve also somewhat optimistically tried to translate a couple from the original French and German. Apologies for any poor translations, especially the line about the “cat in front of the fireplace” which is probably a hopeless misunderstanding! Anyway, here goes...

"Excellent indie pop on second album from thoughtful London-based group, Pocketbooks. The album as a whole is laced with fine orchestration ranging from the strings on the aforementioned 'Promises, Promises' to the lovely piano led 'The Sky at Night' and 'Harbour Lights'."

"'Carousel' is an absolute winner. These 10 tales are full of the wide-eyed abandon of being young, in love and with the world at your feet and the rest of your life to explore it. Pocketbooks have created a thoughtful, uplifting album that sets them apart from many of their contemporaries simply by the quality of their songs."
The Sound of Confusion

"At its best, Pocketbooks' Carousel is catchy indie pop of finger clicking proportions. Indie pop tones, interweaving melodies, poetic lyrics and the heart of a romantic storyteller."

"As you listen to stories and tales expertly woven alongside the lovely tuneful accompaniments it becomes an enjoyable 40 minute ride. "Promises Promises" is one of the best things you are likely to hear this year and if it doesn't get your feet tapping as a bare minimum then I suggest a visit to your GP is due. It's an indiepop dancefloor smash, kids! On "Sound of The Carnival" [Emma’s] melodic voice soars high amongst the stars and you find yourself flying amongst the clouds with gay abandon."

"Telling tales of heady months picking apples, visits to the cinema and lost love, Carousel forms a soundtrack to the perfect teenage summer. If what you're after is wholesome fun pop amid an avalanche of clever songs (some happy, some sad) then you could do a lot worse than these 11-tracks of shimmering fun."
Derby Telegraph

"A gem of a pop album. With Andy Hudson's twinkling keyboard and Emma Hall's amazing, crystal clear voice to the fore. And this time everything's backed up by some perky strings. It's pleasing to see a band can move on without losing any of their pop sensibilities."
A Layer Of Chips

"A DELIGHT from start to finish. As usual with this lot it's a bouncy pop word-filled thrill ride, but with a marked UPPING on the Production side of things. The lyrics have blossomed into a kind of POINTED DELICACY that mark them out as a style unique."
MJ Hibbett

"Ein großes Pop-Album. Wenn es Dich aber erst einmal erreicht hat, nistet es sich ein, macht es sich gemütlich wie die Katze auf der Decke hinterm Ofen."
[A great pop album. The first time you hear it, it makes you feel as comfortable as a cat at home in front of the fireplace.]
Gutes Hören Ist Wichtig

"Even when the subject matter remains tied to its harkening solitariness, the music itself is surprisingly perky and maintains a real energy throughout."

"Further listens allowed the real beauty, depth and craftsmanship of both the song-writing and the execution to reveal themselves. I was drawn in so tight that it started to hurt. Suffice to say that ‘Carousel’ is an exceptional album and is now playing more frequently than its predecessor ever managed, which I didn’t think would ever be possible."
Buzzin Music

"Des mélodies simples et fines. Deux voix, l'une féminine, l'autre masculine, douces et légères. Un piano évoquant les vieilles comédies musicales américaines d'autrefois. Des violons discrets et soyeux. Si vous cherchiez un album de pop léger et sans prétention, qui fait pensivement bouger la tête et les pieds en vous nettoyant le cerveau, inutile de chercher plus loin, vous aurez du mal à trouver mieux..."
[Simple and delicate melodies. Soft and light male and female voices. A piano evoking the old American musicals of the past. Discrete and silky violins. If you‘re looking for a light and unpretentious pop album, that thoughtfully gets your head and your feet moving and cleanses your head, look no further, you will not find better ...]
Dans Le Mur... Du Son

"Every track oozes with delirious charm, conjuring images of cinematic summer days, all free-wheeling tandems, hands holding hands on park benches and the dizzy falling into new love. Even when lamenting life’s losses, there is joy to be found in the details – the inherent poetry found in coupling the vast expanse and the minutiae of everyday experience."
Old Fridges Can Kill

"What, essentially, you’ve got in Carousel is a gem of a pop album. If you want to force me to pick a favourite, then it’d have to be Promises, Promises; a flurry of bright harmonies and fast pacing set by the sweeping violins, singer Emma Hall’s lovely shining vocals and bittersweet lyrics about casual promises that never materialise."

"Beautifully crafted tunes which ooze melodies. Rarely does an album evoke such lovely times, it could easily soundtrack those relaxing lazy summer days or in fact the ethos of the Indietracks music festival. Wonderful way to while away forty minutes of your life, lovely!"
Shadders Online

"I love love love this LP, 'Carousel' is a beautiful POP! record, accomplished songwriting deftly played, with hooks and melodies (probably, I don't really know, I'm no expert, but certainly things that make you pay attention and listen up and whistle to yourself later) a sweetheart deal for any dedicated popkid... a record for keeps, a corker!"
A Fog Of Ideas

"Some of these songs are nothing short of pure pop brilliance. 'Promises Promises' bounces along like a rabbit on a pogo stick. My other personal favourite 'The Beaujolais Lanes' reminds me of a Burt Bacharach style song, which is the highest compliment I can offer. Really all hail Pocketbooks for this is a rather splendid album."
Donkey Rides

Phew! Of course, we could probably compile an equally long list of quotes offering fair criticism about the album, but frankly that would have been a lot less fun! Anyway, the album is still available from Odd Box Records, Bandcamp (with immediate MP3 download) and the usual online distributors if anyone fancies a copy.

Our next show is a Pop-o-matic event in Sheffield on Saturday 14 January with Colour Me Wednesday and Markie Plays Girlpop! It’s our first trip to Sheffield since 2007, so please come along if you’re around.

Andy, Dan, Emma, Ian and Jonny x

Friday, 11 November 2011

London show with violins: Tuesday 15 November

We're very excited to say that we'll be joined by four violin players from A Little Orchestra for our show in London on Tuesday 15 November.

Claire, Jill, Matthew and Natalie previously joined us onstage at the Indietracks festival back in July. Here's a video of them playing Sound Of The Carnival with us!

And here's the details for Tuesday's show:

Tuesday 15 November 2011
Scared To Dance presents... Shrag + Pocketbooks + Fever Dream
The Lexington, 96-98 Pentonville Road, London N1

Shrag played an spectacular set at the recent Fortuna Pop! birthday celebrations, and we can't wait to hear some songs from their forthcoming album again. Tickets are £7 in advance from We Got Tickets

Hopefully see you on Tuesday!

Andy, Daniel, Emma, Ian and Jonny x

Friday, 4 November 2011

Bonfire night: London show and free MP3!

Just a quick reminder that we're playing a show with The Orchids on Saturday 5 November at The Bowery in London.

It's a rare opportunity to see The Orchids, who are one of the stars from the legendary Sarah Records label. We've been invited to play an 'extended set', so we'll have time to play some old favourites as well as some new album songs.

Tickets are just £4 in advance from Pebble Records, or £6 on the door.

To celebrate the gig taking place on Bonfire Night, we're making our firework-themed song Sparklers available as a free MP3 download for this weekend only. It's available free from our Bandcamp page until Sunday night.

Hope you can make it along on Saturday!

Thursday, 6 October 2011

Brighton and London shows: autumn 2011

Just a quick post to let you know about a couple of shows we've got coming up this autumn.

22 and 23 October: Brighton Indie-pop Weekender
The Horse & Groom, 129 Islingwood Rd, Brighton, BN2 9SH

This will be our first visit to Brighton since autumn 2006, when we played at a small harvest festival organised by Stars of Aviation. This year's weekender is organised by The Bobby Mcgee's and features lots of ace bands including The Lovely Eggs, Tigercats, Anguish Sandwich, MJ Hibbett, A Little Orchestra and The Give It Ups. And entry is completely free!

The music starts each day at 4pm, and we're playing at around 7pm on the Sunday evening. Here's the full line up:

Saturday 22 October: 4.00pm The Bobby McGees; 4.30 Tourists; 5.10 Dave; 5.50 Quiet Choir; 6.30 M J Hibbett; 7.10 A Little Orchestra; 8.00 The Beautiful Word; 8.30 Candy Panic Attack; 9.15 Stars Down To Earth; 10.00 Tigercats

Sunday 23 October: 4.00pm Into by The Bobby McGees; 4.30 2 Lezzers & A Loop Machine; 5.10 Domonic Von Trapp; 5.50 Jack Lattimer; 6.30 The Give It Ups; 7.10 Pocketbooks; 8.00 Larry Pickleman; 8.30 Tigercub; 9.15 Anguish Sandwich; 10.00 The Lovely Eggs.

Links: Songkick / / Facebook

Saturday 5 November - The Bowery, London
Pebble Records presents... The Orchids + Pocketbooks
36-38 New Oxford Street, London WC1A 1EP

A rare London gig for The Orchids, who were stars of the legendary indie label Sarah Records, and who have now recently signed to the ace Pebble Records. We've never played at The Bowery before, so we're really looking forward to it!

Tickets: £4 in advance from Pebble Records
Links: / Songkick

Tuesday 15 November - The Lexington, London
Scared To Dance presents... Shrag + Pocketbooks + Fever Dream
The Lexington, 96-98 Pentonville Road, London N1

We're pleased to be returning to The Lexington for this show with our friends at Scared To Dance. Shrag are one of the most exciting bands around at the moment and we can't wait to hear some songs from their forthcoming third album. We're also looking forward to seeing Fever Dream again, after they played a great show with us in Notting Hill back in June.

Tickets: £7 in advance from We Got Tickets
Links: Songkick / / Facebook

Thanks very much to everyone who's picked up a copy of our new album. If you haven't got a copy yet, you can hear six songs in full on our Bandcamp page. And of course, CDs are available from Odd Box Records!

Hope to see you at one of the shows!
Andy, Daniel, Emma, Ian and Jonny x

Monday, 19 September 2011

Carousel: new album released today!

Our new album is officially released today!

The CDs come with a lovingly-prepared 12-page booklet with all the lyrics and some wonderful carousel-themed spiral designs, as created by the excellent Krister Bladh. They're available in Rough Trade, HMV, Amazon, Play, Norman Records, Pebble Records, and other carefully selected shops. And, of course, you can also pick up a CD directly from the friendly folk at Odd Box Records: Pocketbooks - Carousel (Odd Box Records)

Alternatively, if you prefer your music instantly and digitally, the album is now available on iTunes, Amazon MP3, emusic, Rhapsody, Tradebit and various other digital places.

You can listen to the whole thing on the Pocketbooks Bandcamp page or by using the player below:

Thanks very much to everyone who's picked up a copy already!

Andy, Daniel, Emma, Ian and Jonny x