Tag Archive: emily drake


swindon105_5logo-300x186The podcast of the Live and Local Show from Swindon 105.5. This week we have an interview with Stuart Maconie and in session with James Daubney. Music from: Emily Drake, Antonio Lulic, The SheBeats, Emi Mcdade, Tamsin Quin, The James Warner Prophecies and Seven Years On.



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Library - 192Review by PfalzDxii

Well I remember the day I clutched a few shillings and climbed up the stairs to see my first band. I remember the sense of anticipation and awe.

I was nearly late on Thursday for the evening’s entertainment; I hurried into the Vic and bought myself a drink. As I clutched my £3 and descended the few steps into the darkness, I was surprised, yet gently pleased, that I once again felt that same sense of anticipation and awe, I had felt, so long ago.

The reason for this strange and unexpected emotion was that fact that I was again to see “Emily and the Dogs”. This band could so easily have be called, “The Emily Drake Trio”. In my day, they would have been. Emily was once in “The Sunday Dogs”, as were both Lee Moulding, and Cinzano Taylor. I like your style, Em.

“Emily Sykes and Friends”, started off the evening’s revelries. Emily S. played rhythm-guitar whilst singing, with Phil on bass-guitar. Amy, Polly, and Rebecca, sang harmonies most wondrous to the ear. All four ladies sat together in a row. Phil, once more, sat behind and to the side. The stage was beset with strings of colourful petals. Were they perchance, artificial? Regardless, the effect was magical. So was this group of friends….. magical.

“Matilda” were on next. Phil left the stage. The four ladies went to their instruments. Emily Sykes to the drums. Amy, sax. Polly, bass-guitar. Rebecca to the keyboard, and her role as main singer. The other three, too, sang harmony as well as playing. The audience was enjoying themselves, as indeed was I.

“Excited-Nervous-Excited-Nervous-Excited-Nervous-Excited-Nervous……” quote from Emily Drake, the morning of the gig. It warmed my heart to read it. When an artist of Em’s abilities is that anxious, it means they intend to give their all. Emily Drake always does. This band of hers is still relatively new. They have played a few gigs together, and they have matured into a band to be reckoned with. Lee Moulding on drums and Cinzano on bass-guitar are a wonderful rhythm section. They compliment Emily; playing and singing to perfection. They have all been friends for a very long time, and know each others’ musical talents, intimately. And what singing! Razor sharp lyrics of much intelligence. Em uses her voice, at times, as an extra instrument, bending them to her will. It seemed to me that as each song finished, the applause grew ever louder. Yes, some of that was due to me, but I was certainly not alone. “Emily and the Dogs” appear to be a musicians’ band. The Vic was full of wonderful musicians. This added to the occasion. They seemed as awed by Emily’s pure talent and quality, as was I.

Emily, I love your art, all of it. For those that don’t yet know, Emily Drake is also an artist of fantastic imagery and imagination. The evening had been beautiful, and so full of warmth and love. Many did not want it to end. After-gig celebrations moved on to another local music pub, where a marvelous band was still playing, even I went. I too simply wanted the magic to continue. In a crowded pub near midnight, with a band in full flight, I ordered, and was served with, a cup of tea. Sometimes, I just love Swindon.

One thing is for certain. I love “Emily and the Dogs”.

Review by PfalzDxii

I know some stalwart Shuffle goers who did their utmost best to be everywhere over the three day shuffle, they are heroes. I know of one musician now resident in Berlin who on being asked if he felt like a drink, jumped on a plane, and was at the shuffle. He is a legend. I though, had mainly highlighted “Matilda”, and “Emily and the Dogs” as two bands not, not to be missed. I have seen them both before and was very happy they didn’t clash with one another. Where does time go? As I write this, I realize that the Shuffle was two weeks ago. But the memories!

Where indeed does time go? I am from the generation that thought punk should have been given its own BBC programme rather than invade The Old Grey Whistle Test. Not to be too prejudiced however, I went with my then wife (yes I did have one) to see XTC at the Oasis. This was in about 1978 when Barry Andrews was still in the band, and before Dave Gregory joined. Standing at the front though was a mistake. Gobbing was still in full swing. This was the quaint custom of the band spitting from the stage, onto the heads of their fans below. I was not enamoured of this, but do remember that the music was excellent. For one reason and another, I stopped going to local bands and became a cultural recluse. Thirty years later, friends and relatives dragged me against my will to the Vic. I treasure that act of kindness. On stage that evening (13/11/08) were the Sunday Dogs and Matthew Kilford. What had I been missing? That was the first time I saw Emily Drake, she was playing violin in the Sunday Dogs, and singing vocals. Such wonderful music. I very soon discovered many other fabulous bands including “Matilda”. It was all such a revelation. I had lost thirty years.

A buzz went around the Beehive, one of “Matilda” couldn’t make it and they weren’t coming. Well, yes and no. Just as we got this piece of sad news, Emily Sykes walked in with guitar. She is the drummer in “Matilda”. Amy and Polly came in without any instruments. So it was Rebecca (singer and keyboard player), who was missing. Emily and the others found stools. Phil Hamer (with electric bass guitar) sat as far back in the corner of the room as possible with his head down, he had joined an all girl band. Except that now the line-up was “Emily Sykes and Friends”, a new and exciting line-up in which Emily is the lead singer. Someone shouted out “what’s the name of the band?” Emily replied with “Matilda mark II”. Phil did his best to hide. Emily has such a wonderful voice for folk and for harmonizing with the others, and did this whilst playing rhythm. Phil was playing the softest bass possible. There were songs accompanied only by clapping and seated stomping. This was all so harmonious and beautiful. As with Matilda, the humorous banter and laughter, was joyous.

“Emily Drake and the Dogs” were up next, I was glad I didn’t have to change venues. Emily Drake having turned the tables, now has some of the same musicians she played with in The Sunday Dogs. This time it was Ian Taylor on bass, and Lee Moulding on drums. This band is another newly formed wonder. They play Emily’s songs with such vitality and love. The songs are superb. Threatening, poignant, sharp, loving. Emily was playing rhythm guitar, will her talents never end? I stood next to her husband during their set, he was taking photos. Emily introduced new material. Songs that held me spellbound. I became aware that the audience was filling up with the great and good of the local music scene. “Emily Drake and the Dogs” are rapidly making a name for themselves, and rightly so. Afterwards, outside on the pavement, Emily Drake’s music was a subject of much conversation, all of it good. Some were surprised just how good she is. I though, already knew that. She is brilliant! As I walked away from the Beehive, a badger ran across my path. A rare and memorable evening indeed!!