New WebsiteAugust 25 2012
Hi! Welcome to our new website... keep checking back for up to date news and gig information! Have a look around, there's plenty to see here. You can also find links to our twitter, facebook and reverbnation pages. See you on the road!
Bentworth BluesAugust 18 2012
Another fantastic year at Bentworth Blues. This festival keeps getting better and better. Well run, great beer and great atmosphere... huge thanks from us to Matt, Karen, and everyone who helps organise such a wonderful weekend. Here's to next year!
Plunger - Ealing Blues FestivalAugust 3 2015
Everybody likes that exclusive "I know a great band you've never even heard of" feeling, but there comes a time when you have to ask "Why the bloody hell haven't you?!" A perfect example of this graced the main stage at Ealing last week.
Northsyde are an insanely talented group of musicians, the rhythm section alone are worthy of their own review: Hayden Doyle's powerful drumming can put windows out at 1,000 yards, but it's not all muscle - check out the stylish switch to Latin-inflected rhythms mid-guitar break in 'Whipping Post'; if you listen carefully you'll hear Ian Mauricio's jazz-rooted bass creating liquid textures behind the scenes, particularly of 'I'm Not Crying' but he's just as adept at pumping out the disco grooves on a cover of 'I Wish'.
If you have a guitarist friend who chats through gigs, take him to see Jules Fothergill: like all the other guitarists I know he'll stand in open mouthed silence for the duration. At the risk of sounding like the Learn To Swim ad, he really can do anything: discursive, jam-band noodling, banshee howl teetering-on-the-edge-of-feedback frenzy or Duanesque slide, you name it he's got it covered. His slide playing was particularly good on 'Statesboro' Blues' and a Crungetastic 'Cherry Picking', while the twin guitar work on 'Jessica' (with guest Mark Chudley taking the Dickey/SG role) was sublime, especially the extended to-you-to-me exchanges in the mid-section.
Lorna Fothergill [pictured] said recently she wished she could "grow a big hairy pair of balls" I think she should be told she doesn't need to: her delivery on 'Higher Ground', resembling a human sax solo in places, was ballsy enough for anyone, and the Gregg-grit in 'Statesboro' and Planty wails of 'Cherry Picking' could put any male rock vocalist out of work, while 'Don't Change Horses' saw her reaching Aretha-levels of soul power. The near unaccompanied spiritual of Ruthie Foster's 'Death Came A-Knocking' showed an incredible range in both senses from growling lower notes to impassioned higher registers, and from vibrato-laden vulnerability to ground shaking power. The sinuous rocker 'Still' allowed her to inject a note of keening desire into her delivery, and there was bags of playful sassiness on 'Northside': even a stint doing backing vocals while Jules sang the lead in 'Save My Soul' actually ended in a tour de force display of verbal riffing Tina Turner-stylee over the closing bars. Tremendous!
So why are they so criminally ignored? Maybe because they take their music and not themselves seriously? Maybe because they do it for love and nothing else? For now, their fans will have to be content with the satisfied feeling of being "in the know". And with the brilliant music, naturally!
Storyteller's Daughter Review - http://themaninthehatreviews.blogspot.co.uk/August 31 2013
Anyone who has seen this band live will know that together, they have that ability to lift a whole room into another stratosphere and front lady Lorna Fothergill can both strip the paint from the walls and hold you close and whisper in your ear. To translate that onto an album is not easy but this has to be one of the best vocal led blues-rock releases of 2013. There is so much to like about it and there is not a track on it that disappoints.
The formula for their success is obvious. Firstly, it is clear that this is a tight, solid collective of brilliant musicians who have paid their dues and who think as one. With Ian Mauricio and Hayden Doyle at the back - so close that you can't separate them with the proverbial Rizla - and the stunningly talented guitarist Jules Fothergill conjuring solos, rhythms and fills from nowhere, Lorna's raw and beautifully powerful voice is given the perfect platform to fly free and unfettered.
And then there are the lyrics. Apparently all crafted by Lorna they are incredibly smart and tell compelling, sometimes bitter sad stories many of which, if you have ever been in a one-sided relationship, will have you nodding a knowing glance at your past. Sometimes, the sentiment feels so angry you want to clap in agreement. The outburst on "Chicken Shit" reminds me very much of the Marianne Faithful/Keith Richard fiercesome attack song "Why'd Ya Do It?" But it is not all sad despair and as the title track says, sometimes 'you can catch her with her guard down and her head on straight'. So. Fine band. Brilliant lyrics.
And then there are Jules and Lorna. So well crafted are the arrangements that you only first notice Jules' brilliance when he opens up and lets go in "Spinhead" and later he is given the freedom of the six minute track "Messing Around" to show just how spellbinding and soulful the guitar can be. Echoes here of Jim Mullen at the top of his game. And then there is The Voice. Having seen her live, I try and refrain from making comparisons. (Lorna can sing Janis, Plant, Amy, AC/DC, anybody - check Youtube). The blues/rock music scene is currently blessed with some fine female singers but Lorna's voice is unique and this album shows exactly how powerful, raw and sensitive a top class singer can be when she has the right material and some fine musicians around her...
Go get this album. I lived in a road called Northside for fifteen years... it was never this exciting...
Hebden Bridge Blues FestivalMay 26 2013
A squillion years ago, before The Hat needed help to lift an amplifier, there was a regularly used band expression "Watch Out For The Windows". It came back to him with a bang when blues rock band Northsyde kicked off on the Electric stage. Fortunately, Yorkshire mills are made of stern stuff and held on whilst Lorna Fothergill and band threw some of the best heavy blues and blues rock at them that the Hebden Festival has ever seen....plus a little noisy soul funk goes in the mix as well. This was the real deal and the rammed room moved as one to shout/greet and punch air at every number. Singer Lorna has a raw and powerful voice and she seems to channel every rock and heavy blues singer straight from her spectacular heels to the top of her head. Dynamic doesn't really do it justice - it would be daft to reference Zep and Janis because her voice is nobody else's but hers - but her range and power would match anyone you can name. Somehow she effortlessly lifts it above her classy driving band of Jules Fothergill, Ian Mauricio and Hayden Doyle - which in itself is some achievement when they are running at full tilt. Yes, they do a bit of slow and a bit of quiet - but I'm not going to mention that. Go see for yourself. Soon. This band is moving fast... "Blues Man In The Hat"
Bentworth 2012February 18 2013
Now for the much awaited Bentworth festival favourites, who were headlining this year: "Northsyde". Lorna Fothergill on vocals, who had borrowed a fetching top hat (Saturday is Hat day at Bentworth, and a wide array of hats were on display throughout the day - including a group of festival goers representing the group "The Village People"). As ever a confident high octane set was delivered with new songs interspersed with favourites from their back catalogue, including "Get The Funk Out", a great rendition of "Hard Shoes" and even some from the "Funkydory" days. Many had been requested by fans, and the complex and numerous lyrics tested Lorna and the band's memory skills to the full. This is a band that would energise any audience, and the Bentworth crowd needed no encouragement to get on their feet, sing-a-long and enjoy this superb set. After a number of encores, eventually the stage went quiet and Saturday at Bentworth was over for another year... Liz Aitkin
Classic Rock - The Blues MagazineAugust 16 2012
"Welcome To Lazy Bishops' Festival Of Rain!" was how singer Lorna Fothergill greeted us on this gloomy Saturday. With heavy showers driving across leaden skies on a stiff breeze, we needed something to drive the clouds away, and that's what we got. Jules Fothergill's off-mic warning to "Mind your ears" preceded the all-out aural assault of Push It, a heavy blues with lyrics that would make a streetwalker blush. There were plenty more bone-crunching riffs in Good To Be Free and Storyteller's Daughter, title track of their soon to be released third album. Blues with a funk twist came in covers of Jack Pearson's I'm Not Crying and Whipping Post (more Gregg Allman & Friends than classic ABB), and in the Woman Across The River-style 'slow verse, fast chorus' of their anthem, Northside.
Gigging across Britain, Holland and Italy has seen Northsyde develop into a tight-knit unit, and display excellent musicianship individually: Jules is the best lead guitarist you've never head of, every solo was of jaw-dropping quality, particularly on Whipping Post and his slide solo on Northside. Meanshile, Lorna's voice was a match for any blues rock vocalist, male or female, while Ian Mauricio's fluid bass and Hayden Doyle's powerful drumming perfectly underpinned the whole. Rain? What rain?
Blues Matters (Issue 65)July 1 2012
Then a contrast again, Andrea and Dermot from Rhythm Zoo have definitely thought about the sound and tempo as they mixed up the acts, repetition was not going to happen today. Northsyde stormed the stage next, full of energy and life, as the musicians support Lorna up front; the second female lead vocalist of the day. Once again the set was a clever mix of Northsyde favourites such as the Allman Brothers' Whipping Post, Mercy and new tracks from their much anticipated album including Rocking Chair. The surprise of the festival had to be their version of Phil Collins In The Air Tonight. Northsyde is an accomplished band combining Fothergill's immense musical talent with Jules silky guitar licks, Lorna's exceptional voice and a rhythm section of Hayden Doyle (Drums) and Ian Mauricio (Bass), to rank with the best in the business. Northsyde create once again their own distinctive funky blues to wow the audience, the temperature was rising despite the cold outside the Theatre...
The Storyteller's Daughter (2013)1. More - 4:37
2. Storyteller's Daughter - 3:36
3. Can't Stop The Bullet - 4:00
4. Spinhead - 3:34
5. Chicken Shit - 3:02
6. Distraction - 3:39
7. No Rocking Chair - 5:11
8. Thin Ice - 6:15
9. Messing Around - 6:04
10. Northside (Live) - 5:38
11. Mercy (Live) - 4:53
Mercy's Medicine (2009)1. Get The Funk Out - 3:32
2. Hole - 3:48
3. She Never Could - 3:46
4. Blue Summer - 4:58
5. Devil Said - 3:14
6. Hard Shoes - 6:25
7. I'm Not Crying - 4:46
8. Take Nothing - 3:05
9. Leave You Be - 6:01
10. Whipping Post - 5:37
Still (2006)1. Push It - 4:08
2. Mercy - 5:01
3. Long Time Coming - 4:53
4. Same Train Home - 3:45
5. Good To Be Free - 4:31
6. Still - 7:32
7. Northside - 6:58
8. Free and Easy - 3:11
9. Cherry Picking - 5:40
10. Dreamtime - 6:25
11. Sugar - 5:07
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