WARRINGTON band Black Pulp are one of 10 aspiring artists hoping to hit all the right notes as they battle to be crowned winners of a prestigious music competition after getting through two live rounds
Celebrating its landmark fifth year, Merseyrail’s Sound Station Festival embraces local grassroots talent and takes place at an exciting new venue on Saturday 11th November.
Traditionally held at Moorfields station, it will be Liverpool Central this year that hosts the Sound Station Festival 2017, in honour of its special anniversary.
The festival is the only event of its kind, which sees a busy commuter railway station transformed into a free concert hall, brimming with exciting new undiscovered musical talent. Over the summer, up and coming acts from across the region have been busy sharing their original music to the project’s social media pages, for the chance to perform at the hotly anticipated grand finale.
With a record-breaking number of entries reaching the 150 mark, ten acts have now been unveiled who will face a panel of expert judges representing the cream of Merseyside’s music industry.
Hoping to get their musical debut off on the right tracks are this year’s finalists, which include:
Bassist Sam Holt, from Great Sankey, formed Black Pulp when he met Jack Smith at freshers week and they just clicked.
Matt Bayliss, who went to school with Sam at St Gregory’s RC High, is also in the band.
Now three years later, the group is regularly on the road and they have recently been announced as the headliners of This Feeling at The Zanzibar Club in Liverpool on November 24.
Most of Black Pulp’s music has been recorded with Ady Hall and Lee McCarthy at Sugar House, where Viola Beach made Swings and Waterslides.
Sam said: “When we’re in the studio ideas bounce off each other.
“The guys at Sugar House are doing really well for themselves, I think they’re going to blow up in the next few years.”
The project has served as a launchpad for countless local musicians and the band or solo artist who shines on the night will receive a year’s worth of professional music industry mentoring, recording time, as well as free train travel on Merseyrail until January 2019.
Jan Chaudhry-van der Velde, managing director of Merseyrail, said: “Marking its fifth anniversary, this is a special year for Sound Station, and the level of talent we have seen from the entries is phenomenal.
“Our festival provides the perfect platform to promote undiscovered local acts who are on the brink of musical greatness. Sound Stations always attracts lots of attention from our passengers, bringing in music fans from far and wide.
“2017 will be no exception, so our contestants will have to give it their all as they battle it out in the performance of their lives. It’s set to be our most exciting final yet.”
Dan Astles, aka “Astles” who scooped the prestigious prize last year will be joining the judging panel made up representatives of Bido Lito! magazine, GetIntoThis blog, Pirate Studios and Sentric Music Publishing.
Since being crowned winner, Astles has gone on to play at some of the region’s top festivals, released his debut EP and is set to play a huge show at District in the Baltic Triangle to launch his second release in November.
Astles said: “Without a doubt, [the prize]has taken me to the next level as an artist. It’s given me the chance to begin to think about what my records actually sound like in the studio, and how that’ll translate [into a]live setting. Really though, it’s been about having the time and support to do just that.”
The Merseyrail Sound Station Festival takes place at Liverpool Central on Saturday 11th November from 3pm with an after party at Leaf on Bold Street where there will be performances and the 2017 Merseyrail Sound Station winner will be announced.
For more information go to merseyrailsoundstation.com. Best of luck to Black Pulp!
Here are the finalists: