Going Underground :: Emma Hallows (w/ Bonus ‘Moon & Back Session’)

© 2011 Dan Helsing Photography

“Standard” – Emma Hallows

Having played in bands on-and-off for years, Emma Hallows finally thought “fuck it” and, like so many others, decided playing solo was the way to go. After ‘borrowing’ her moniker from an AFI EP, she set out alone and it hasn’t worked out too badly: She’s played up and down the UK with a plethora of fantastic bands and artists, released a couple of EPs and is set to have a fantastic 2012, with a bunch of festival dates lined up and an upcoming tour with Dave Hughes.

Right from the off it’s clear that her music has a distinctive Gaslight Anthem influence, but that’s as far as it goes. Her songs do capture that storytelling element that’s prevalent in the songs of Fallon and co, but they’re far from derivative. Emma lays everything bare in her songs, and it’s this that has endeared her to so many within the UK’s acoustic and punk scenes. This continues into her next release, a split record with Dave Hughes and Harker, set for release later this month.

  • Feb. 13th – Stereo – York
  • Feb 14th – The Garratt – Manchester
  • Feb 15th – Royal Park Cellars – Leeds
  • Feb 16th – The Greyhound – Beeston (near Nottingham)
  • Feb 17th – Astbury Castle – London

Speaking of Dave, his and Emma’s tour starts today (13th) in York. ‘Under The Bridge Presents…’ is bringing the tour to Manchester on February 14th, but be sure to check if they’re coming anywhere near you. You won’t be disappointed, that’s for sure.

Finally, Emma sat and recorded a bonus Session for us last year whilst we were waiting for Jimmy Islip. Check out this live rendition of ‘Lincoln Inn’ from the EP Anchors Up, which is available to download here.

Moon & Back Session :: Chris T-T

“Is it alright if I do a cover?” – Chris T-T

Earlier this month, Chris T-T embarked on a tour of the UK with Franz Nicolay. Whilst in York, we caught up with him and he played us a couple of songs for a Moon & Back Session. A stalwart of the UK folk scene, T-T recently released an album comprised of A.A. Milne poetry having had a fantastic reception at this year’s Edinburgh festival. For his session he performed ‘Halfway Down’ – a song from the Milne record – and a cover of Sebadoh’s ‘Willing To Wait’.

Chris’ session is the final session of 2011, but we’ll be back in the new year and are hoping to continue where we left off. If there’s anyone you’d like to see us have ‘in session’, please leave a comment below, message us on Twitter or post on our Facebook.


‘Halfway Down’

‘Willing To Wait’ (Sebadoh Cover)

Moon & Back Session :: Franz Nicolay

“I like to stay one step ahead” – Franz Nicolay

Franz Nicolay might be the most talented person I’ve ever met. Not only is he a multi-instrumentalist (he plays guitar, accordion, banjo, keys and probably a few more), but he’s got a fantastic voice too. Having previously played in The Hold Steady and The World Inferno Friendship Society (and collaborated with Against Me!, Frank Turner, The Bouncing Souls and The Loved Ones, amongst others) Franz now takes to the stage as a solo artist and his live show is absolutely amazing.

On his recent tour with Chris T-T he was gracious enough to record a Moon & Back Session, playing two songs from his forthcoming 3rd solo album Do The Struggle. If you’re not a Franz fan yet, these next couple of tracks might just change your mind. He plays both songs on the banjo too which, at the very least, is something different. Check them out below, and look for a session from Chris T-T before the end of the year.

‘You Don’t Know I’m Here’

‘Live Free’

Moon & Back Session :: Jimmy Islip

“People usually lie down when I play” – Jimmy Islip

Jimmy Islip is a stalwart of the UK punk/emo scene. Having previously played in Eighty Six, Jimmy now divides his time between That Fucking Tank, Milloy and The Magnificent, whilst also playing solo acoustic shows every once in a while. Before playing one of the aforementioned acoustic shows, we roped him into playing a few songs for a Moon & Back Session.

As well as playing a brand new song, that we’ve dubbed ‘Untitled’, Jimmy also graced us with an acoustic version of, The Magnificent single, ‘1981’ and a cover of ‘Rumbleseat’s ‘California Burritos’. Jimmy will be embarking on a UK tour alongside Digger Barnes and Moon & Back Music/The Under The Bridge podcast will be bringing that tour to Manchester on January 28th.

For now, enjoy! And, as always, feel free to tell us who you’d like to see in session with us in the comments below.



‘California Burritos’ (Rumbleseat Cover)

Moon & Back Session :: Sam Russo

Ladies and gentlemen… Sam Russo!

I have it on good authority that Sam Russo is actually the fucking man! Not only is he a fantastic singer/songwriter, but he’s also one of the nicest guys you’ll ever meet. Sam was in town to play an impromptu show in Manchester, so we decided to get him in front of our cameras to play a few songs. Not only did we get, the excellent, ‘Tinned Peaches & Diamond Rings’ (taken from his split with Helen Chambers, Jimmy Islip and Chuck Ragan), but we were also treated to a bit of an exclusive – a brand new song by the name of ‘Black Coffee & Bingo’.

Remember, we’ll be back next Friday with another Moon & Back Session. Who do we have in store? We’ll be announcing that in the coming days over on our Facebook and Twitter pages, and if there’s anyone you’d like to see in session leave us a comment below. Enjoy!

‘Black Coffee & Bingo’

‘Tinned Peaches & Diamond Rings’

Moon & Back Session :: Helen Chambers

Ladies and gentlemen…Helen Chambers!

If you’ve ever listened to Under The Bridge, you’ll know that we love Helen Chambers. The singer/songwriter from York recently released a split 12″ with Sam Russo, Jimmy Islip and, the one and only, Chuck Ragan. Not only that, but she became a surprise inclusion on more than one Revival Tour date this summer – singing alongside Chuck and, Alkaline Trio singer/bassist, Dan Andriano.

We’ve been trying to get this session done for a while now with little success, but we’re glad to finally have it up on the site for your listening/viewing pleasure. Helen performs ‘Little Demons’ a track from her debut EP and, brand new song, ‘Not Breaking Down’. We hope you enjoy them. We’ll be back next week with another Moon & Back Session!

‘Not Breaking Down’

‘Little Demons’

Moon & Back Session :: Emma Hallows

Ladies and gentlemen… Emma Hallows!

Emma Hallows is an up and coming singer/songwriter from Manchester. She’s created quite a stir in the UK acoustic scene, so it was great to get Emma in session like this. On top of a Manchester car park, Emma performed the title track from her debut solo EP ‘Anchors Up!’ and a cover of The Gaslight Anthem’s ‘Great Expectations’.

‘Anchors Up!’

‘Great Expectations’ (Gaslight Anthem cover)

I hope you enjoyed that. Come back next week for another Moon & Back Session!

Moon & Back Session :: Great Cynics

© 2011 Louise Distras

Ladies and gentlemen… Great Cynics

Great Cynics are one of our favorite bands right now, so to have Giles do a session for the site was pretty awesome. We’d dragged him up to Manchester to play a show, but made sure to get him “in session” for you guys too. Armed with an acoustic guitar and a dodgy hat, Giles sat and performed ’14 Coleman Street’ and a cover of, Paint It Black’s, ‘Memorial Day’ outside a Manchester bar.

We think it turned out quite well, but what do you think. Let us know in the comments and be sure to let us know who you’d like to see us get a hold of in the future.

14 Coleman Street

Memorial Day (Paint It Black cover)

Moon & Back Session :: Louise Distras

Ladies and gentlemen… Louise Distras

Louise Distras is a singer/songwriter from Wakefield who’s been causing quite a stir in the UK acoustic scene. Her latest EP Heartstrings On A Handgrenade is fantastic (read Barlow’s review!), so it was great when she agreed to perform a song for us as part of ‘Moon & Back Sessions’. Check out the video below to see/hear Louise perform ‘Blue On Black’ outside a pub in Manchester.

The Moon & Back Sessions are shot and edited by our, in-house, video team Dicking Around Productions. To contact them or see more videos, visit their website or follow them on Twitter.

Moon & Back Session :: Koji

Ladies and gentlemen… Koji

Koji has recently concluded a tour of the UK and Ireland with Into It. Over It., but before he left Manchester he was kind enough to let us a record a little something for another ‘Moon & Back Session’. Rather than going with one of his own, the Philidelphia-based singer/songwriter decided to cover Pedro The Lion’s ‘The Longer I Lay Here’. As expected, it’s awesome. Be sure to check it out below.

If you have a particular artist in mind for a ‘Moon & Back Session’, drop us a message in the comments section and we’ll do our best to secure them next time they’re touring. We’ve got more of these coming in the next few weeks and we’re really excited about them. Thanks for watching and thanks to everyone who shared this online, that was awesome!