Introducing... The Nankeens

The voice. It’ll be the voice that grabs you first, and in a crowded market where every runty, skinny-jeaned wannabe straps his Gretsch on at shoulder height and whines like a stuck pig, The Nankeens set themselves apart. Singer Adam Darby’s craggy burr is an instrument of rare depth. Soulful and convincing, it lifts the four songs they’ve recorded to date and hints at a youth misspent with Marlboros and too many late nights and lost weekends. With an average band age in the mid-late twenties, and time-served in a host of local acts, they’ve probably lived a little. Good. Too many gobby kids and their tiresome attitude starts to wear you down after a while.

They’re Salford lads but fear not. They avoid the ‘Manchester Band’ minefield by dint of sharp song craft, ambitious arrangements and a band dynamic that soars even on these first, self-funded recordings. ‘Whispers Down the Phone’ drifts in on spare, spaced-out guitar before it unfurls a killer hook. The storming ‘Who Stole New Year’s Eve’ models Arcade Fire stomp. But it’s ‘Here We Go’ that might just make a play for your heart, a maze of tempo changes and dizzying atmospherics. Imagine Fleetwood Mac’s ‘The Chain’ being torn apart and re-assembled by Joy Division. Extra points, too, for not just grafting blank non-sequiturs and bland narratives onto their tunes - lyrics are decent, daring to slip the usual trip hazards in favour of ‘You and me against the world, babe’ confessionals. All told, some distance above the common herd.

There’s more recording planned and a series of upcoming shows (below.) It’s rare that TMF tip an unsigned band. Listen in and find out why.

Here we go by The Nankeens

Oct 19th The Fox and Goose – Southport

Oct 20th Night and Day Café – Manchester

Nov 24th The Royal Oak – Chorlton

Dec 1st The Monto Water Rats – London

Dec 22nd St Kents - Fallowfield

Feb 9th Academy 3 - Manchester

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