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Sheffield, England, United Kingdom | SELF

Sheffield, England, United Kingdom | SELF
Band Alternative Rock


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TIM Hampton pulls up in his battered Ford Escort estate car. The foot wells are covered in building dust, an old door’s bursting out of the back and a deflated airbag dangles from the driver’s door (a result of a mishap while trying to tow some steel).

You’d be forgiven for mistaking the Bromheads frontman for a cash-in-hand cowboy.

But that couldn’t be further from the truth.

Well, sort of.

Hampton’s in the middle of transforming a disused industrial site into a huge studio and arts complex for bands, artists and producers – the musical equivalent to Yorkshire Artspace, if you like.

The complex, known as Crystal Ship (named after The Doors song), will also be the home of Hampton’s new record label, The Crystal Ship Recorders.

It’s an ambitious project. Already, since purchasing the property in August last year, the 29-year old musician has built walls, damp-proofed, laid several thousand square feet of wooden floors, painted, plastered, lifted and shifted.

He has, in many ways, become a Jack-of-all-trades workman. Only Hampton’s the one shelling out the cash.

“I’m as proud of these floors as I am of finishing an album,” he says, stamping on the makeshift parquet flooring. “You wouldn’t believe what it was when we moved in. I’m really excited about finishing it.”

As he tours the site, a number of musicians – somewhat incongruously approach him with all manner of practical problems: “Mate, I’m going to sell that bandsaw on eBay and buy a better one,” says one trendily-clad musician.

“Yes, it’s a bit crap,” replies Hampton, who has taken on the role as building supervisor as well as label boss, landlord and producer.

It’s as if BBC 3 have set all these musicians and producers a ‘trading places’ challenge for a daytime television series.

But the system seems to be working. Gradually, Hampton – with the help of his tenants – is metamorphosing this industrial pile into a slick, all-singing, all-dancing musical haven.

And it’s an ambitious project. “I want to create a sort of musical artistic community, where people lend each other equipment and help each other out,” says Hampton.

Some of the rooms have been finished and are already being used for rehearsals.

“I was fed up with landlords taking musicians for granted. Bands pay the same rent as everyone else for workspace, yet they’re treated so badly.

“Many of the rehearsal rooms in this city are cold and damp. Who wants to rehearse in a cold, damp room?”

Dead Sons are among one of the first bands to move in, having transformed one the complex’s larger spaces. Their hub is a rustic haven – walls are painted in deep red, vintage-looking lights dangle from the wall and a Fidelity retro portable record player spins alt-country in the corner.

Producer Ross Orton (whose tweaks can be heard on the Mercury Music Prize-nominated Arular and Toddla T’s Skanky Skanky) is also setting up camp at Crystal Ship.

Orton’s busy installing masses of insulation, a forest of wooden struts and soundproof screens – a far cry from his usual job installed at a sound desk or behind a drum kit (Orton drummed for Jarvis Cocker).

He said: “I’m really excited and I’ll be glad when it’s done. When it’s finished there’ll be a live space, a control room and a big studio room and we’ve already had a studio design specialist come and give us some advice.”

Despite there being at least three producers in the studio, Orton doesn’t believe there will be any aggressive competition.

“There would be if this were in London, because people have to make themselves sound more important.

Perhaps in Sheffield there’s a bit of competition between commercial studios but not with people like myself. I only work with people I like or people whose music I like.”

And then, in stark contrast to the electronic and technical wizardry of Orton’s HQ, is the rehearsal space of Sheffield’s alt-bluegrass, rootsy banjo group, Pete David and the Payroll Union.

But The Crystal Ship’s not all rehearsing and recording – there is some play.

Hampton’s hoping to use the premises for private events, parties and performances. He’s certainly got the space for it.

And, judging from his battered car, his parquet flooring and bandsaw knowledge, the skills too. - Sheffield Telegraph

"WE'RE a real DIY band," says Tim, frontman of Sheffield punk-rockers Bromheads Jacket.

"We're putting the next record out ourselves, we've set up our own studio and we drive ourselves around – we have complete control."

Until recently, Bromheads Jacket were signed to indie label Marquis Cha Cha! (named after a Fall lyric). While they were sad to leave, Tim says the band enjoy their freedom.

Bromhead's resilience to authority is tantamount to their sound – edgy, shouting vocals and crashing cymbals mark the sound of What Ifs and Maybes.

"There are loads of musical influences with our band. We listen to so much stuff – my first experience of falling on love with music was listening to Nirvana's Bleach when I was 11 years old, then there was my Dad's jukebox and Led Zeppelin have just always been there.

"Really, anything with energy informs our music – I'm into a lot of fifties rock and roll like Gene Vincent and Eddie Cochran."

He adds: "The Stooges have probably directly influenced us more than anyone else."

Bromheads Jacket's latest album, On the Brain, takes its title from the first track of the album, Clear To Some.

"It's a song about the media, the government, drugs and subliminal control. How these phenomena make us scared – that's the idea behind our lyrics.

"On the surface they sound like love songs but there are actually other messages," says Tim, relating this process of songwriting to that of the blues.

But while subliminal messaging and sub-conscious control seem like heavy topics, Tim assures "It's not all that deep – it's also about being energetic and heavy music."

Bromheads Jacket play at the University of Sheffield Students' Union, this Saturday, as part of a long-awaited UK tour. - Sheffield Telegraph

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Bromheads support for Pixies gig

Published on Friday 4 June 2010 14:04

SHEFFIELD'S masters of high-octane garage, Bromheads, have revealed that this weekend they will be supporting the Pixies this weekend.

The show, at London's Troxy, is one of the Pixies 'secret gigs' - dedicated only to the group's online esoteric community of fans.

"It's going to be such a cool show, the Pixies have boycotted all the booking agents and put on this gig just for fans on their database in England.

"It's a real DIY affair - they've booked the venue themselves . That's the way like to do things to - we take care of all our business ourselves," says frontman Tim Hampton.

But the gig does bring nerves with it. "I am pretty scared about it, to be honest. We're only playing a 20- minute set though.

"We want to get up there and get on with it because at the end of the day people have come to see the Pixies."

The Sheffield group's connection with the Pixies is the American alt-punk band's manager, Richard Jones, who has also supported Bromheads since they parted from their label, Marquis Cha Cha, last year.

Looking forward to the gig, Hampton says: "I can't wait - though I think I'm more excited about seeing the Pixies than the fact we are supporting."

Bromheads support the Pixies on Friday at London's Troxy venue. - Sheffield Telegraph

SHEFFIELD’S art deco haven the Library Theatre will host a two-day live event called the Lamp Sessions this weekend, hosted by the garage rock duo Brom-heads.

SHEFFIELD’S art deco haven the Library Theatre will host a two-day live event called the Lamp Sessions this weekend, hosted by the garage rock duo Brom-heads.

The Lamp Sessions (a name inspired, no doubt, by Bromheads’ trusty battered onstage standing lamp) will run this Saturday and Sunday and will feature performances from Cats for Peru, Floating Death Picnic, Japanese Sleepers, Jubby Taylor and Black Flowers.

The line-up promises a lot of variety. The melodic Cats for Peru’s repertoire ranges from delicate ukulele-led numbers to semi-grunge rock-outs such as Love in Lift, whereas Jubby Taylor (former member of Sheffield indie pop group The Harrisons) plays Tom Waits and Clash-inspired Americana.

And then, in complete contrast, there’s Floating Death Picnic, a bizarre one-man act playing absurd keyboard-led songs about such exotic subjects as the Supertram.

The acts have been hand-picked by Bromheads’ manager/organiser Lee Mullin: “We picked the bands because they’re the ones we wouldn’t be expected to be associated with but deserve to be seen by wider audiences.”

Screaming Maldini, Cats for Peru and Floating Death Picnic also appeared on Bromheads’ Busker Bus during the Tramlines festival, where a handful of acts played on a 260-seater coach.

“Bromheads are behind the Lamp Sessions and, following the success of the Busker Bus, the band wanted to bring the goodwill and closeness of a varied music community together again for a couple of special festive events.”

The event follows Bromheads’ release of the Lamp Sessions album, which features ten original tracks recorded by the band over the last 12 months and is downloadable from the band’s site.

The live event also bookmarks a year which has seen the Sheffield duo support the Pixies in London and perform in a German castle. It has been a very busy year for the band. But the fun doesn’t stop there – it starts again this Saturday at 7pm.

The Lamp Sessions, featuring Cats for Peru, Screaming Maldini, Black Flowers, Jubby Taylor, Floating Death Picnic and Japanese Sleepers, starts at 7pm on Saturday and 7pm Sunday, December 18 and 19. - Sheffield Telegraph

BROMHEAD'S JACKET have stripped down on every level. Once a full band, now the Sheffield-based garage rockers are a budding two-piece known simply as Bromheads.

The group removed the 'Jacket' from their name after bass player Jono West left the band to peruse his dream job working in humanitarian aid.

"We knew how much he wanted to do this work, he's been studying for a master's in humanitarian aid and that was his dream after music. We said to him, 'If you don't do it now you'll never do it," said guitarist Tim Hampton.

But the show must go on, at least for Hampton and drummer Dan Potter, who, taking inspiration from the likes of the White Stripes and the Black Keys, are continuing as a duo.

The new incarnation follows Bromhead's Jacket's successful musical career, which included two albums and a support slot with The Strokes.

This time, however, Bromheads are doing things differently.

"We've been doing loads of secret parties and we've played in quite a few house parties as we played a lot of conventional gigs with the full band. We're trying to find something new," says Hampton.

With low-key, word-of-mouth shows and various hush-hush parties, the duo are definitely underground.

"Sheffield's underground scene seems to be doing something really new and exciting at the moment. Four years ago it was very popular to be in a band but now that's not quite the case, but the result is that there's a lot of really different stuff out there."

"Guitar Hero now has a DJ game – that's the way it's going now, it's funny to see the cycle go round again but there are loads of bands doing great stuff here in Sheffield, like Shake Aletti, Wet Nun's Blues and Mabel Love."

Bromheads have likewise received a positive reception, according to Hampton. "People seem to really like what we're doing – and we're not really playing old songs."

He added: "We're as creative as we ever were in a band."

Despite lacking a bassist and additional guitarist, technology has enabled the pair to create a variety of sounds that belies their meagre number. "I've got some pretty clever gadgetry – one of my gadgets makes the guitar sound the same as a bass and then allows you to play it through a bass amp."

The stripped-down line-up has also resulted in a stripped-down sound. "It's made us go back to an old school rock and roll sound. Our songs are based on simple melodies rather than prog-rock. It's really changed the way we play, how we play it and what we are listening to."

Demo 6, a track on the band's MySpace page, sums up this sound – the song opens with Beatleseque vocals singing 'woooohhOOOO' and builds up to a garage explosion. Drums are rough, pacey and accompany fuzzy guitar with backing vocals. "Our sound's a bit like that of The Sonics' cover version of Roll Over Beethoven, but probably less cool," laughs Hampton.

The band take their name from the film Zulu, starring Michael Caine, who plays the snooty Lt Gonville Bromhead. "He wears this red army jacket throughout the film -that's where the 'Jacket' comes from," says Hampton.

Bromheads will definitely be busy in the coming year. The duo are releasing six singles in six months. "We started releasing one a month in September and our next release is called the Magic Number." The song – a clap-led ditty led by fast garage guitar circa 1965 – will be released in January.

This weekend, Bromheads will support Reverend and the Makers, who have just returned from supporting Kasabian's arena tour this year. The bands play as part of the Leadmill's Christmas party in anticipation of the venue's 30th anniversary next year.

Looking forward to the night, Hampton says: "It will be strange, we've never supported a band before, apart from The Strokes, but it will be interesting to see how it goes."

The Leadmill Christmas party is this Saturday, December 19, at the venue on Leadmill Road. - Sheffield Telegraph

Bromheads have a nostalgic 60's sound with this cover of the Nancy Sinatra track. In 2 short minutes, Bromheads perform a simple yet effective take on the song - Alter the Press

Page 46 onwards - Sheffield Music Scene

Page 156 onwards - Sheffield Music Scene

Page 48 onwards - Sheffield Music Scene - Artrocker

It started as a bit of a cloak and dagger. The email only said “talk to the people at the DJ booth, you’ll be given a bracelet and then be escorted to the venue”.

I half expected people in dark coats and very unfriendly looking lead-spitting toys. In fact, it was just a meeting in “The wick at both ends”, a very nice and criminally underlooked pub in West Street (hey, they have Don Julio Tequila!).

The undisclosed gig place? The upper floor of the pub. A very small room perfect for an intimate show, showing why the Bromheads is local slang for “we have a POG and we are not afraid to use it”.

A mixture of old songs and a few new ones were on the short but sweet 30 minute gig. Fight music for the fight was probably the most loved one from the old mix, although spirits were high for the majority of the set.

Then it came the moment when Tim (lead singer/guitar) asked the audience to bust out any piece of recording equipment and go wild with “Hole in the head”, a new song (which you can listen in demo version right here) that rumours indicate will be their brand new single in November.

Two very righteous covers, “Dedicated to the one I love” and “Boots” (the new single, which you can get here) were the two cherries on top that finished the very enjoyable single release party. - Sloucher

Last year the Bromheads went from a three to a two piece, but tonight there’s nothing missing in their lively performance at the Sheffield Showcase. Fresh from the studio with Sheffield-based producer, Ross Orton, the Bromheads debut a few new songs to the enthusiastic crowd. The new material is well received and sounds promising, delivering more of what the Bromheads do best – unpretentious rock ‘n’ roll.

This is reflected throughout the gig, with the energetic, fun songs sweeping the crowd along and leaving no casualties in their wake. The songs are deceptively simple sounding, with the honest lyrics and sharp melodies combining to create nothing short of good, classic rock ‘n’ roll. Tim Hampton’s distinctive southern England accent lends itself well to a heavier sound, and his infrequent frenzied yells into the microphone leave the audience without time to catch their breath, before another launching into another song.

A pleasant surprise is a cover of “Dedicated To The One I Love”, originally by the Mamas and Papas. The Bromheads manage to infuse it with their own unique style, while still retaining everything that makes the song so enjoyable. The atmosphere is frantic and at times, a little turbulent, but the fun rhythms more than make up for it – not to mention a tongue in cheek dedication “to Jack Black.”

At the end of the night, the crowd seem disappointed to see them leave, but hopeful that they’ll soon be back. All in all, a triumph for the Bromheads. - i just wasn't made for these times

It is not often that you find a musical duo who are exceptionally good at what they do, but with Bromheads, this is definitely the case. Originally named Bromheads Jacket and performing as a trio, they released 2 successful albums before losing a member. Now consisting of Tim Hampton on Vocals/Guitar and Dan Potter on Drums, their newest release 'The Lamp Sessions' is a collection of 10 singles that were released as digital mp3s last year in a physical format, to ‘‘fund the recording of a 'proper' debut album. ’’

The first track ‘Hole In The Head’ opens with raw vocals and clean guitar that emphasizes the unique tone of lead vocalist Tim Hampton. This is followed by the hook of the song ‘wo-oh. ’At this early stage, it already becomes apparent that the songs of Bromheads are ones which are going to stick in your head. Completed with Potter’s 50’s inspired drum beats, their Indie-esque sound is fashioned creating a simplistic yet energetic verse. Though material on ‘The Lamp Sessions’ averages from 2 ½ to 3 minutes, every song is an explosion of sound which definitely pleasures the ears. Some of the songs such as ‘Cinderella’s’ and ‘Magic Number’ do show a dated sound of Indie which we have heard over the last few years, but this cannot be classed as the same mundane drab which has been released lately. As the album progresses, the direction in which Bromheads shine becomes evident. One stand out track is ‘Edey’ combining beautifully crunchy guitars with the usual catchy chorus, common in every song Bromheads produce.

‘Snow’ shows a softer side to Bromheads, with the creative and intricate lyrics of Hampton such as ‘all the kings horses and all his men/couldn’t put me together again/if you and me were ever to be apart.’; helping to create a song which definitely doesn’t disappoint and stays embedded in your head for days to come. The album concludes with the delightful acoustic medley ‘Chocolate Factory’, a personal favourite which one can imagine being remembered for years to come by fans and music lovers alike. It’s true to say that Hampton’s vocal melodies are quite similar in the majority of songs, but you can see the potential route that Bromheads will take for their debut album. ‘The Lamp Sessions’ is definitely not a new sound and it is not trying to be, but Bromheads are making wonderfully catchy Indie Rock, which everybody will enjoy. - We Are The Unseen

Bromheads Jacket split up after 2 solid albums (Dits From The Commuter Belt being a legitimate lost classic, relatively ignored by the main stream press on release) but they live on with their new project: Bromheads. Guitar/Vocalist Tim Hampton and Drummer Dan Potter are still plugging away in untraditional fashion as a bare bones 2 piece. With The Lamp Sessions they make a low-key return to the physical format with a ten song collection of tracks which were previously released as free MP3s over the past year. The results showcase an exciting rebirth and give a glimpse of what might be still to come from the invigorated Sheffield pair.

There’s an average track time of around 2 ½ minutes on the record which isn’t particularly surprising for a Bromheads release but there is a conscious change in direction evident here. Even though tracks like “Edey” are reminiscent of mark-one Bromheads Jacket with their breakneck lyrics and fuzz heavy riffs, most of the tracks here display a more innocent narrative which hark back to the US Surf-pop and garage bands of the 1960s (see “Magic Number”, “Blinkers On”).

“Snow” is so catchy it will be annoying your brain space for weeks after hearing it (which is not to say it’s an annoying tune, it’s great, just insanely memorable so listen at your peril). Weak points on the collection however include “Cinderella’s” which sounds like a discarded early demo and “Friends” which just gets a bit too repetitive especially when thinking back to the lyrical genius of Tim Hampton’s early work. The power duo pull things back though and leave us with the mouth-wateringly countrified “Chocolate Factory” which might be described as Bromheads’ very own Hotel Yorba and is well worth the sticker price alone. - Crackle Feedback

A few minutes after midnight and Bromheads took the stage. It was a joy to hear ‘Edey‘ (the third of the six free songs they are lashing out on the unsuspecting public) live, as well as the new song, ‘Dedicated‘, getting its debut. A few old classics were also taken out for a spin (‘Trip to the golden arches‘ if I’m not mistaken).

There might have been a little mistiming during ‘Magic Number‘, but hey, we’ve all been attacked by the Lager Banshee before, innit? And it’s better to see a musician skip a beat than having to listen through an inorganic, preprogrammed synth taking away all the chaotic nature that lies in the ocean we call music.

Closing with a one-two punch of ‘Boots‘ (pogo time!) and ‘Hole in my head‘ (shredding time with the beautiful POG!!) were the two hard rockin’ cherries to a top notch musical evening.

A final note: at sometime during the performance, Tim Hampton said “It’s nice to see that people still will pay to see a guitar show” (or something of that nature) when seeing how the place was pretty packed. You keep playing like this, the punters will continue to flow. - Sloucher


Singles - 2009
2010 - Magic Number
Fan of the Vagrants
Blinkers On
Least of Her Worries
Chocolate Factory
Albums - 2010 - The Lamp Sessions

As Bromheads Jacket



Bromheads are a garage band formed in Sheffield, UK in 2009. Formed by Tim Hampton,and Dan Potter from the previous 3 piece band Bromheads Jacket. They’re a duo building a reputation for raucous live shows in the UK in bedsits, buses, underground clubs and guerrilla library gigs

In 2010 the band self released 12 free singles through their official website,, those tracks are being released as 'The Lamp Sessions' available in the shop.
Their unique DIY journey continues with the recording of brand new material with Ross Orton (MIA, Arctic Monkeys, XX Teens), for a debut album due out in early 2012.