China Bears formed in the winter of 2015 after twin brothers Ivan and Frazer met James and Dean at university in Guildford.
Perhaps unsurprisingly drawing influence from bands such as The National, Dry The River, Frightened Rabbit and Snow Patrol, China Bears create misery-strewn indie anthems combining ambient guitars, choral vocals and raw lyric writing. The end result is a fantastically precise sound which takes original emo loud/quiet template of, say, Death Cab For Cutie, but adds a stadium-sized sonic suckerpunch. Since forming they have released 3 singles independently, played extensively around the UK and received national radio play from BBC Radio 1, BBC 6, BBC introducing and Radio X. Earlier in 2019 China Bears teamed up with Fierce Panda for the release of their debut EP 'I've Never Met Anyone Like You'.
After playing in various bands throughout his early teens, Robert Craig Oulton started writing his own songs; taking inspiration from songwriters spanning from Neil Young and Joni Mitchell to Justin Vernon, whilst picking up influences from alt-country outfits such as Pavement and Wilco on the way. After becoming a firm favourite on the Birmingham scene from supports with Pinegrove, Magic Potion, and Breathe Panel, “Pretend I Was Dreaming” signifies the start of a new chapter for Oulton.
Shai Brides are a group from Birmingham who write hectic pop music. Drawing comparisons to post-punk and the experimental indie groups of the 1980s such as New Order and Talking Heads, as well as newer alternative acts such as Everything Everything and St Vincent, they bring together whirling psychedelic guitars with glittering synths and blistering drumbeats.
Blending influences of grunge and emo, Humanstairs carefully craft dual vocals which soar over heavy bass driven riffs and intricate guitar twinkles, creating enormous songs.