Indieterria presents – a secret Birmingham concert with The Novus

Dear Readers,

Early this year we introduced you to The Novus – a Birmingham band that is gathering a lot of interest around the country for their music and commitment to art.  The Novus take no prisoners, do not hold back and precisely direct their anger. They play instruments like lives depend on it and wear slogans on their tees with pride. This shoot straight and speak the truth attitude is winning them fans so quickly that even BBC 1 is paying a close attention. Today we return to speak to the band about their biggest show to date – at a 500+ capacity mystery venue in Birmingham. Yes, you heard it correctly – a band found a brand new place to play in the capital of West Midlands and are throwing a party of the year. Everybody`s invited. Not only a new space is being introduced, there will be a killer line up, an exhibition, a special DJ set, one band will play their final set, another one will have their debut one. Its all DIY. We sat down with Tyla Challenger – the bass player for the band to learn more about the concert, preparations and how you can secure yourself a pass for this event.

The poster for a secret gig in Birmingham on 20th September 2019

You have been on Indieterria before.  Just in case somebody recently discovered The Novus  – please tell us who is in the band and where are you based?

Tyla Challenger: In the band is Euan Woodman (drums), Tom Rhodes (guitar), Connor Hill (vocals) and Tyla Challenger (bass). The 3 of us were born in the same hospital, and went to school and college together in Stourbridge, but have since adopted Birmingham as our musical home – and meeting Euan along the way.

On  20th September  you will play a gig at an undisclosed location in Birmingham. Joining you is a fantastic line up of guests. Can you introduce the bands that will support you?

Tyla Challenger:  This show is entirely DIY, almost guerrilla if you will. We have built it from the ground up, even having to build the stage, sound system, and more ourselves – as well as hopefully building a small prop set to make this show like no other. A big part of this is of course, picking the bands. Since the success of the last secret show we’ve been spoilt for choice having more bands than we can name wanting to get involved which is truly humbling – but we managed to get it down to the unreal line-up that is The Assist – council pop powerhouses from Walsall, Echo Beach – a female fronted indie outfit, Pretty Vile – an exciting young punk duo. For every show we do we like to ‘introduce’ a band to the world, delving right into grassroots music and giving them their first ever gig and often a bigger platform than a lot of bands can get for their first gig – almost in an attempt to give them a head start and beat that struggle of trying to get gigs as a brand new band. Last show it was Watermark and they have gone on to do some great shows. This time it’s the wonderful Sterling.

We heard  that a DJ set will also take place. Are you able to say who will overtake the decks?

Tyla Challenger:  There is a DJ set taking place, it hasn’t been announced officially yet but there are fly posters we have had put up around Digbeth and Birmingham city centre stating the DJ and the secret location (go find`em!) The DJ set is from no other than Btown legends!

Connor Hill unleashing his fury on stage

The Novus on stage

We do not recommend messing with The Novus.

This is going to be your second secret gig in the city. In April you held a show at a mystery venue that turned out to be Muthers Studio.  It sold out before you revealed the location of the gig. Do you think a degree of secrecy keeps audience interested in the show?

Tyla Challenger:  We definitely think the secret location keeps people interested in a show. Part of the reason we do this is to make things more of an experience. We never just want to play a ‘gig’. We want everything we do to be providing an experience, a service to and for our fans. And if we can have some fun with it, then even better.

And what draws the band to pick up the venue for the gig?

Tyla Challenger: There are so many factors that go into picking a venue for these kinds of things. Last time with Muthers Studio it was a lesser known venue, and has since become a commonly used Brum venue which was part of the aim. It’s a cool, quirky venue with great sound and aesthetic, which is easily accessible and definitely deserves to be on the Birmingham map.

For this new venue  – Quantum Events Centre –  the capacity was always a factor as this time its triple the capacity of the last venue. But also it is ticking the box of being different, making it a new experience for everyone and we’re pretty sure no one has played here before. At least not in the scene we’re in. As I say we’re having to build everything from the ground up.

We could’ve easily gone for the standard progression of small venue (Sunflower Lounge) and then work our way up the O2 venues in capacity order – but we don’t want to follow the classic blueprint.

Posters advertising the show have been posted around Birmingham guerrilla style

The Novus on the cover of new issue of Ryan`s Gig Guide for Birmingham

Your recent performance for Sonic Gun Weekender at Castle and Falcon turned into a riot, with band members throwing themselves into the audience and large mosh pits erupting. What can be expected this time?

Tyla Challenger: The Sonic Gun Weekender was class yet again. This was our biggest performance to date and for our upcoming show we are hoping for more of the same on a much, much larger scale. We aim to make it so that years from now people are still saying “I was there” and those who weren’t are saying “I wish I was”.

We know tickets for 20th September are still available. How much do they cost and how can they be obtained?

Tyla Challenger:  Tickets are starting at £5/6 and going up to £7/8 depending on how soon the person buys them. They’re available at http://bit.ly/TheNovusSeeTickets  or  http://bit.ly/TheNovusSkiddle as well as a physical tickets being available from all the bands at only £5 each – a bargain considering the line up.

If anyone wants to get in touch with the band – what`s the best way to do it?

Tyla Challenger:  Anyone wants to get in touch with us about the show or any general enquiries – all our social medias are @thenovusband and our email is thenovusband@gmail.com

You can follow the band on social media at the following links:

https://www.facebook.com/thenovusband
https://twitter.com/TheNovusBand
https://www.instagram.com/thenovusband/
https://soundcloud.com/thenovusband
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCCRt2uOIvTYDQ8vYaoPEX-w
https://open.spotify.com/artist/3mPpz1sdOXNi3vLokDVbHm?si=JvlBswE-QYap-6PJ7emuww

And check the bands on the bill:

The Assist:

https://www.facebook.com/TheAssistBand/
https://twitter.com/TheAssistBand
https://www.instagram.com/theassistband/
https://www.youtube.com/user/theassistband
https://soundcloud.com/the-assist
https://open.spotify.com/artist/7uO6bPS0yAUPm3jjm1aitC?si=NkaC482eQ16T1ceCOzamOg


Echo Beach!
(playing their final gig)

https://echo-beach.uk/
https://www.facebook.com/echobeachbandtptr/
https://www.instagram.com/echobeachband/
https://soundcloud.com/echo-beach-music
https://open.spotify.com/artist/0Sji449s443fjzjPsLyy5R?si=DE_YYlKlQj6exERWf-6q1w


Pretty Vile

https://www.facebook.com/PrettyVileMusic/
https://twitter.com/PrettyVileUK
https://www.instagram.com/prettyvilemusic/
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCb6ui5ACqFIIAF2cF4ddTbw
https://open.spotify.com/artist/5Yh27rfCowqKiM3nKRRjUO?si=fpZz4TkoTwK37m0-i2MDjw

And introducing brand new arrival on the Birmingham scene:

Sterling
https://www.instagram.com/wearesterling/

We are hoping to interview few more artists taking part in the secret party. So stay tuned and grab your tickets as they are flying out!

Love
M/R

Indieterria meets The Novus

Dear Readers!

It`s Valentines! What`s a better way to celebrate the day than interviewing a band we have fallen in love with? Let us tell you about this particular bunch of talented friends who are shaking up entire indie scene in West Midlands and turn heads wherever they go. Despite their young age – they are determined and focused, they relentlessly play up and down the country, including gigs in London, they gathered themselves invitation from This Feeling and a mention in NME by Alan McGee himself.  They are more than ready to leave their mark on the scene and follow the likes of The Blinders, False Heads or Avalanche Party to bigger things and bigger stages.  We won`t be surprised to  see them going to SXSW next year.

Ladies and Gentlemen of the independent music circuit – please meet The Novus. We had pleasure and privilege to sit down with vocalist Connor Hill to speak about their upcoming tour,  Birmingham music scene ad recording with Wizard of Wolverhampton.

The Novus

Tom Rhodes (guitar)
Tyla Challenger (bass)
Euan Woodman (drums)
Connor Hill (vox)

 

The word “Novus” means “new” in Latin. What does it mean to you? A new beginning? A new chapter in your lives? New music? Or maybe the explanation is very simple and it just sounded like a good name for a band?

Connor Hill: The Novus does mean new in Latin. Not many people know that initially (laughs)! It also does mean a new beginning I guess – myself Tom and Tyla were in a band before and wanted something new and more us – but ‘The New’ sounded quite boring. We went through loads of names, but The Novus for us sounded like it fitted well; and no one else had the name.

You come from Stourbridge and Birmingham, the second biggest city in the UK. Brum has a powerful musical scene: from indie to metal, grime and rap. Tell us about your beginnings. How did you meet and when did you know you wanted to play music together?

Connor Hill:  Myself, Tom and Tyla (guitarist and bassist) met at school when we were 11. We were all in bands throughout school together and we only initially connected with music so I guess we knew we were wanting to play together. Tom and Tyla asked me if I wanted to be part of this new band they were creating and that was that! We met Euan (drummer) at a gig he was playing at and managed to poach him and that’s how the band formed.

The new kids on the indie scene

No rest for the indie band

The Novus has been compared to The Clash meets Kings of Leon (half way) with a bit of Joy Division, Deep Purple and Black Sabbath thrown into the mix. Would you agree with being squeezed into the new garage/psychedelia genre alongside IDLES, The Blinders, Avalanche Party and Shame? We have to admit that your music is more melodic and blues-y at times. There’s definitely The Doors and Jimi Hendrix hidden somewhere under all those distorted guitars.

Connor Hill: To be compared to the names mentioned is mad for us, we love all the bands mentioned and the garage/psych scene is an amazing one to even be considered to be a part of. We do take a big inspiration from Jimi Hendrix as well but we listen to such a wide range of music, we have lots of little inspirations from different places. Every review of us someone hears something slightly different, which is good for us to see where people think we fit.

On 2nd of November 2018, Raw Sound TV filmed your concert at O2 Institute 2 in Birmingham. The show received very positive reviews. Connor you were described as “teenage Mike Hucknall joining Pearl Jam or Rage Against the Machine”. We don’t see any likeness to the Simply Red singer (maybe the hair do?) but the resemblance to Eddie Vedder and Zach De la Rocha is quite convincing. During performances you jump into the crowd, run from one end of the stage to the other, command the crowd to come closer. Would you agree with this description?

Connor Hill:  (bursts into laughter) Hucknall is definitely to do with the hair- wish I did look like him!! I guess I would agree to an extent, but for me, my stage presence is more of an alter ego than me personally – which is what I love so much about performing. For me, I don’t really take that much of an inspiration from people to do with my stage presence but more just go with what my head thinks I should do and roll with it.

One of the bands of 2019? Why not!

This is not a drill – this is rock and roll

Despite forming in early 2017, you shared stages with Karkosa, Velvet Tides, Riscas, Ivory Wave and Pale White to name just a few. You have a strong following in your home town and now you are off to pastures anew to conquer other parts of the UK. Is the tour with This Feeling helping? How many shows have you played with them already?

Connor Hill:  We aren’t doing a tour with This Feeling right now. Not yet anyway, but we have played a few shows in Birmingham with them. It’s always a good night and we get a good few cans of Red Stripe out of it so that’s enough to win me over!

At the end of last year, several zines and promoters put you on their list to watch for 2019. On 29th of January you played alongside Young Garbo, Chris Grant, Nadia Sheik and Christian Pattemore at Social in London. Was this your debut in L-Town or have you played there before?

Connor Hill:  We’ve played London a couple of times before but we do have plenty planned for the capital in the future. It`s always a warm reception and we love playing there!

The Novus are known for their incredible performances.

The Novus

You are working on new music and we heard that you have chosen The Wizard of Wolverhampton himself – Gavin Monaghan (The Pagans SOH, Editors, The Sherlocks, The Blinders) as producer. Are you able to tell us anything? Will you be recording at his Magic Garden studios or somewhere else? Is it going to be an EP or a full fledged debut album?

Connor Hill:  We are going into recording with Gavin in the next couple of months and recording a few tracks, nothing confirmed as to yet but we have some good plans lined up for them. Gavin is a genius and we connect with him and Joe at Magic Garden so well. He isn’t just a producer, he is someone who helps you think about further development of your music to make it the best you can be and that man knows everyone! They are great people to be around and the vibe at Magic Garden Studios is great, we love making music there. All I can say I guess is stay tuned for what’s to come because we are really excited about it.

It’s only February but your calendar is getting busier and busier. Where can we see you later this year? Any booked festivals or gigs we need to attend?

Connor Hill:  So far we have the following dates:

15th February – Actress and Bishop (TF), Birmingham (supporting Gertz)
Event Page    Tickets

28th February – The Sunflower Lounge, Birmingham (supporting Willie J Healey)
Event Page    Tickets

8th March – The Tin Can, Coventry (supporting FEET)
Event Page    Tickets

23rd March – The Snug Coffee House, Atherton (supporting Honeyspider)
Event Page    Tickets

13th April – Camden Assembly, London (Youth Music charity gig)
Event Page    donations welcomed

These are just the ones that are confirmed, we do have quite a few in the pipeline!

To truly appreciate this band – you need to see them live

The Novus live

Live and kicking

Last question are always fun at Indieterria. Let’s pretend that you were invited to any party in the world and you can take two rock and roll legends with you. Where are you going and who’s coming with you?

Connor Hill:  Jimi Hendrix and Flea from RHCP would probably be my choice. Flea I imagine would be a laugh, Jimi would just be the guy that gets us into everywhere because everyone knows him. I would probably go to somewhere like Vegas with them – would be jokes. If you want to find out about the other boys, catch them at a gig and they’ll be happy to have a conversation. Big love.

You can follow the band on social media at the following links:

https://www.facebook.com/thenovusband
https://twitter.com/TheNovusBand
https://www.instagram.com/thenovusband/
https://soundcloud.com/thenovusband
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCCRt2uOIvTYDQ8vYaoPEX-w
https://open.spotify.com/artist/3mPpz1sdOXNi3vLokDVbHm?si=JvlBswE-QYap-6PJ7emuww

We don`t usually link to entire gigs, but you need to see The Novus live and RawSoundTV recorded their performance at the end of last year – and it is a jaw dropper. If you have 30 minutes to spare – see the footage and then book yourself a ticket for the real experience. You will not regret. Believe your friendly A&Rs on this – we know talent when we hear it. And The Novus are pure talent.

We will be reporting back on The Novus on this blog. Not only because we are very curious what they have created with Gavin & Joe at the Magic Garden Studios (by the way – Happy 30th Anniversary  guys! What would the local and national music scene do without you?), but because we simply want to follow their journey to bigger, better things.  There is so much promise and so much passion in this band – and more importantly – so much love for music and art. How can we resist? How can anyone resist?

Till the next time,
Mal+Rita