Laura ‘Ankles’ Coles takes us through her 2014 playing with a ridiculous number of different bands including Block Fort, Ash Victim, ¡Ay Carmela! among tons more.
How was 2014 for you?
Wow, it’s been busy to say the least! I think I have played shows with around nine or ten different acts this year. I toured a couple of times (once, accidentally, with PIX Records founder Chris Clavin), I gigged in Wales for the first time, I’ve put out or been on a few different releases, I’ve lived in two different caravans and a cabin… It’s been emotional.
What was the best/most memorable show you played?
I think I could have one for every band I’ve played with! I might cheat and say Roomtown in Bristol. It was Block Fort’s first show with our drummer Johnny and it was chaotic; this sweaty bedroom-cum-venue was heaving with bodies contorting themselves to fit in the room and forming human pyramids. I also played with Damsel, Let’s Go Nowhere and Ash Victim at that show. Honourable mentions also to the Block Fort shows at Nottingham Queer Fest Winter Ball (where I made the crowd do a “wall of love” instead of a wall of death) and at New Cross Inn supporting Chewing On Tinfoil. Supporting Laura Stevenson at The Old Blue Last when I went out with The Perkettes was also something special – sorry I ate your olives, LS.
What was the best show you went to?
Oh, man – Queer Fest in August at JT Soar in Nottingham was fantastic. Some fantastic bands played, including The Spook School, ONSIND, Daniel Vs The World (I hasten to add on a night I wasn’t drumming), Colour Me Wednesday and a bunch of others. I’ve been to JT Soar like four times this year, and it’s just such a great space. Alternative music is really lacking in proper independent DIY venues, and Nottingham is really lucky to have somewhere so decent as a staple of their scene. I guess choosing another festival-type thing was cheating a bit again, so I’ll add something else and say that RVIVR at the Montague Arms in Peckham was the single greatest band I saw this year. I’d seen them before, but this time they really blew every other band this year out of the water, and the crowd participation (featuring human pyramids and some crazy row boating action) was top notch.
What are some of your favourite releases this year?
Torch Song by Radiator Hospital made my heart hurt, Courting Strong by Martha, Nervous Like Me by Cayetana, the Twisted demo, The Lovin’ EP by Personal Best, the Petrol Girls self-titled EP, any of the stuff that Doe released, the Spoonboy/ Colour Me Wednesday split. Probably also the new Caves and Andrew Jackson Jihad, but I haven’t given either enough time yet.
What are you excited for in 2015?
The Twisted album! I have absolute faith in the fact that everything Livi (frontwoman and solo musician under the name Olive Anne) touches turns to gold. On a personal level, I’m excited to do even more band stuff. Block Fort have a new four track EP coming out and are planning shows, hopefully including a UK and Ireland tour. I’m also looking forward to doing stuff with newer bands, including ¡Ay Carmela! (we have just released our first single and played our first two shows), Baby Arms (Jen from Colour Me Wednesday backed by a band) and playing with established solo artists like Faith Taylor and Emma Kupa (Standard Fare, Mammoth Penguins). Phew! I work at a school so my 2015 half terms are already getting packed out!