Bristol-based psychedelic power-rockers The Shimmer Band burst onto the city’s live scene in early 2014, selling out their first gig off the back of a few DIY demos they had managed to float around their friends. By their second gig, they had already gained managerial interest.
“We kicked up a joyous racket and everyone was starting to hear it,” says Tom Newman, the band’s swaggering frontman.
From Britpop, psychedelia and EDM, to Frank Sinatra and Dr Dre, The band’s influences are almost as eclectic as the music scene that surrounds them. “It’s a melting pot of experimentation,” says Newman of Bristol.
“[There’s] tremendous spirit and talent and everyone’s got time for each other.”
Newman cites Bristol as a creative hub for the southwest, and believes the rest of the UK is starting to catch on as the city becomes more popular. “If you’re an artist in the southwest of England you gravitate to Bristol,” he says. “That’s a no-brainer. It’s a very creative city.
“[There’s] genuinely loads of good music rising up as we speak: Yak, Black Honey, The Amazons, Broken Hands, April, The Wholls and Yves to name a few. And [there’s] a terrific club, This Feeling, that tirelessly gets them in front of people nationwide.
It’s a special scene at the moment. No doubt about that. You’ve also got to respect Blossoms for getting their album to No.1, that’s a serious feat and great for UK guitar bands.”
Whilst selling out music venues in their beloved Bristol is a passion for The Shimmer Band, their sights are cemented firmly in a more adventurous direction. “We wanna be a massive multi-coloured rock and roll circus and play the biggest stages we can,” says Newman
“Our songs definitely translate better on a bigger stage and to do them justice I really think that’s what they deserve.” Having already opened for The Strypes, Jesus And The Mary Chain, Stereophonics and The Vaccines as well as gaining slots at The Great Escape and The Isle Of Wight festival, The Shimmer Band have been firmly cutting their teeth as a live act and have garnered a reputation for it.
“We’re signed to an independent label based in Bristol called Komplex. They’re badass focused with a killer studio and belief for miles,” explains Newman. The band are currently recording their debut LP with Komplex, produced by David Francolini, and have ambitious expectations for the final product.
“We want the album to be 100ft tall in every respect. It’s rock, it’s pop, it’s psychedelic, it grooves and it throws itself off the cliff into free fall,” insists Newman.
“It’s a massive cacophony of sound that is emotive, euphoric and inspiring. When you get round to listening to all the tracks as a whole and in sequence it’s definitely not like anything else. It’s unique and exciting and most importantly, a lot of fun.”