Glass Ankle
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Glass Ankle

Manchester, England, United Kingdom | SELF

Manchester, England, United Kingdom | SELF
Band Alternative Pop




"Song List That Got Bigger In Japan"

Please visit the url to read... JPEG version! Sadly no online version. - Manchester Evening News and Metro

"'Kyo wa ii hi (single)"

Glass Ankle are a four piece folk-pop band from Macclesfield who take their name from a recurring sports injury suffered by front man Greg Jackson.

These two tracks were written while Jackson was living in Matsumoto, Japan. As with the 2009 EP, If You've Been There, he draws inspiration from the 11 months he spent in Japan as an EFL teacher.

His songs have a gentle, unassuming and optimistic tone; almost child-like in the sense of wonder. So much so that they only just manage to stay the right side of twee.

"Feeling alright today - sun's in the sky" are among the English lines and presumably the Japanese lyrics are equally affirmative (the title, 'Kyo wa ii hi', translates as 'Today is a good day').

The other song , Fuji, is based on memories of climbing Mt Fuji and reaching the summit in time to view the setting sun.

The cover image for the CD is a detail from Katsushika Hokusai's Mount Fuji Seem Through The Cherry Blossom.

To flesh out his musical vision, Jackson recruited three musicians as his backing band, which includes his Japanese teacher, Chika Woodward, on percussion.

Both tracks are available for free download from Last.Fm but if you want to contribute to the band's finances you can buy "hand-knitted monkeys with poorly ankles" from their their merchandise stand.

Needless to say, this is not a band who are only in it for the money!

- Whisperin' and Hollerin'

"IF YOU’VE BEEN THERE * demo of the week *"

MM last heard from Greg Jackson (the individual behind Glass Ankle) under the previous moniker of Greyaye. Greg literally came out of nowhere (or should we say the set of “Control” or Macclesfield) with various pieces of work, culminating in a demo of the week award for his “Together We’ll Beat This” home recording. Then he sort of disappeared for a year. Here’s the explanation.

As Glass Ankle, he continues to innovate. Whilst spending a working holiday in Japan for almost a year, he took along a pocket sized multi-track recorder and put together a series of songs. Once back in Blighty, these were polished off and remastered. The quality is pretty amazing, largely featuring double tracked acoustic guitar and vocals. This is all achieved using a pocket studio the size of an iPod.

Each of the songs are pretty long (at a good five minutes each), yet it’s impossible to tire of Greg’s great, softly focussed vocals and the pop sheen he’s popped over these relaxed, refreshing songs. “If You’ve Been There” is an appealing ballad, building to a climax by adding harmonies, whilst “Rules” mixes in some bouncy Country-esque sounds and an impeccably wonderful ending, all accomplished whilst wrestling with the baffling consequences of living within a foreign culture. “The Gokiburi Song” is more searching and seems a little lost in space at first, before cutting into the chorus, supported by some electric guitar, processed clipped beats and again, Greg Jackson’s astutely delivered melodies.

Glass Ankle really is the vehicle for sharing Jackson’s experiences of foreign climes, but I always find myself returning to the melodic elements of the songs and his pure, infectious song writing, which whilst mainly acoustic, abandons the convention of folk and other low volume templates. Another accomplishment, this time created in Japanese bedsits and Cheshire bedrooms.



Kyo Wa II Hi (single) - NOV 2010

1. Kyo wa ii hi (Today is a good day)
2. Fuji

If You've Been There E.P - OCT 2009

1. If You've Been There
2. Rules
3. The Gokiburi Song
4. Tan Tan Men (adapted version of Travis' Turn)



Glass Ankle are an ambitious band who are based in, and close to Manchester.

They were brought together by main singer, songwriter and travel-guitar player, Greg Jackson, who had a burning desire to play his songs with a band. Their name comes from a recurring football injury Greg continues to endure.

Between the 25th June 2008 and 25th May 2009, Greg lived in Japan, teaching English and exploring the country in his spare time. His experiences gave him lots of ideas for songs which would become the basis for Glass Ankle’s musical direction. On returning Greg set about finding the musicians who would help bring his songs to life:

Stu Baggaley - Bass guitar
Greg has worked with Stu on many musical projects and has long admired his driving, melodic bass lines and groovy movement on stage.

Chika Woodward - Drums, cajon, backing vocals
Greg had been attending Chika Woodward’s Japanese lessons unaware that she was a drummer. On finding out, Greg offered Chika the position of drummer/percussionist, and she accepted. Chika is a very good drummer whose passion for playing, ear for harmony and Japanese background add significant dimension.

Paul Maddocks - Lead guitar, banjo
Paul is the newest member of the band. He joined after voicing how much he liked the songs and wanted to try adding banjo to them. Paul’s tasteful lead-guitar and banjo phrases decorate and compliment the songs perfectly.

Although their current batch of songs have their roots in English acoustic indie, the lyrical content is often less familiar, containing Japanese words and references which give the listener a poignant snapshot of life as a foreigner in a very different culture.

On 19th October 2009 the band released their first E.P. “If You’ve Been There”. The CD received high praise; winning *demo of the week* from and achieving 8/10 in Whisperin’ and Hollerin’ magazine. The band have been gigged across the UK, gathering a reputation for their captivating performances and acquiring an ever increasing amount of fans and admirers.

Some of the most notable and enjoyable gigs have included:

. Friends of Manchester Festival @ KRO Bar on 29th January 2011

. In The City Festival @ TROF Northern Quarter, Manchester on 14th October 2010

. Leek SummerJam Festival @ Leek Hockey Club on 14 August 2010

To keep up the momentum they have gathered, a new single called “Kyo wa ii hi” was released in November. “Kyo wa ii hi” is Japanese for “Today is a good day” and as the title suggests, the song is upbeat, capturing the essence of cherry-blossom trees in bloom on a sun-soaked day in April. It has been played by Gideon Coe (09/12/10) and Tom Robinson (13/12/10) on BBC 6 Music and has recieved local airplay on ALL FM, Fuse FM and North Manchester FM. The second track, “Fuji” documents Greg’s experience climbing day and night to view the sun rise spectacularly at the summit of Mount Fuji.

On the 21 January 2011 Glass Ankle were given full page articles in both the Metro newspaper and the Manchester Evening News. In the articles, journalist David Sue described their music as "a most impressive blend of sonic expansiveness and melodic coherence", drawing comparisons with Pavement and Gomez.

Currently they are writing and recording songs for an new E.P. due for release later this year. For their next live performances please visit