Sheer Isolation

Jon Ponting & Kieran Moore

Sheer Music brings you a weekly podcast featuring special guests and tunes from artists in the West of England and beyond with music news, gig dates and more. Hosted by Kieran Moore in Trowbridge and Jon Ponting in Cricklade.

All Episodes

We're joined on this week's Sheer Isolation by the owner of the Nine Volt Leap recording studio in Melksham; Dominic Bailey-Clay. His small team of friends created the town centre studio space from nothing, and he's now dealing with a steady stream of recording jobs from local and national artists alike. Dominic tells us about the early days of their makeshift recording set-ups and questionable neighbours, some of his recording highlights, and talks about the band's he's been working with recently. One of those bands is Bath based Byker Grove Fan Club - we play one of their tracks in the show. We also play a lively pub recording from 2013 of upbeat Swindon folk trio, Grubby Jack. We play this as a tribute to band member Levi Saunders who sadly passed away this week. In news, Kieran announces a hefty Government grant for a venue in the centre of Trowbridge. This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Trowbridge and Jon Ponting in Cricklade.

Nov 28

28 min 51 sec

On this week's Sheer Isolation we're joined by actor, stage performer and writer, Flo Espeut-Nickless. Her one-woman show, Destiny, is a semi-autobiographical take of growing up on a Chippenham council estate. She created the show to dispel the stereotype that everyone in Wiltshire is wealthy and well spoken. She's now in talks to adapt Destiny for TV, while also rehearsing for a festive play, Miracle on 34 Seymour Street, which you can see in Trowbridge over Christmas. We play a track from Gavin Osborn; previous Sheer Isolation guest and is working with Flo on her next project. Our other tune is from Wells duo, The Portraits, who spotted that a High Street chain's Christmas ad uses a melody very similar to something they created last year. In news, Kieran talks about a band member from Oasis playing in Wiltshire, and Jon covers the latest news to revitalise Swindon's Oasis Centre. This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Trowbridge and Jon Ponting in Cricklade.

Nov 20

28 min 45 sec

A new community centre has recently opened in the centre of Swindon. Our guest this week is Julian Jones who is part of the Swindon Hub project. The site, which took over the derelict River Island store last month includes a café, exhibition space, workshop areas and a venue hall. Organisers are already planning events including theatre shows, guest speakers and community advice for reducing our bills and carbon footprints. With Swindon's town centre not looking its best in recent years due to so many retail outlets closing, it's hoped the Swindon Hub will help buck this trend. This week's musical choices are from the melodic Bristol/Norway group Ålesund, and we play a bit of classic indie from Swindon's own Viduals. This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Trowbridge and Jon Ponting in Cricklade.

Nov 13

28 min 47 sec

This week's Sheer Isolation is a fascinating listen for anyone wanting to get into music promotion. We're joined by Tim Orchard from Purr Records - a Bath based promotion and record label during the 2000s. Tim talks about how he first got into music nights at Moles Club in the centre of Bath, how he introduced foreign bands onto the UK scene, and some of the lessons learnt along the way about getting the best out of your bookings. On the music menu we play a track from one of Purr's discoveries - Pete & The Pirates. We also play a tune from Tenderlore who are performing in Trowbridge this week. In news we pick up on last week's awareness campaign in Bristol to highlight the spiking of drinks in nightclubs. This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Trowbridge and Jon Ponting in Cricklade.

Nov 6

28 min 46 sec

To mark the week when The Village Pump in Trowbridge re-opens for live events, we talk to local folk singer and one of the Pump's restoration volunteers, Rosie Upton, who's been a key player in the success of the venue for five decades. She tells us what the folk club was like in the seventies, how it was reborn nearly 20 years ago, and how the Pump is diversifying to include a wider range of musical styles, while keeping live folk and acoustic performance at it's core. Our tunes this week include Wiltshire's very own Fly Yeti Fly, who are launching a new album in December, and Rosie picks two of her favourite folk club attendees; Sally Ironmonger and Brian Carter. In the news, we discuss the skills shortage that's currently affecting the music industry, with many touring crews and stage productions struggling to find the right staff after the usual teams were forced to find alternative jobs during lockdown. This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Trowbridge and Jon Ponting in Cricklade.

Oct 23

28 min 48 sec

Living with autism can be frustrating for yourself and the people around you, especially when young children are involved. This week's guest has played a crucial role in increasing understanding and tolerance of autistic behaviours in schools across the UK. Swindon artist, Sumita Majumdar, is part of the team behind Pablo; a CBeebies series where the lead character shows how his inner-world manifests into real-life behaviour. Sumita has gone on to research autistic traits and coping mechanisms further, and is hoping to create new interactive projects which will allow more people to see things from an autistic perspective. Our tracks are provided by Gloucestershire's Chloe Foy, who is currently touring the West's venues, and Sumita picks a tune by another promoter of autism awareness; Donna Williams. We also talk about how more venues are bringing back regular music nights, and the confusion over different Covid passport requirements between Cardiff and Bristol's nightclubs. This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Trowbridge and Jon Ponting in Cricklade.

Oct 16

28 min 48 sec

On Sheer Isolation this week we're joined by property developer, Jonathan Dean. He owns the Innox Mills in Trowbridge - a former sausage factory which is currently a derelict site that sits between the town centre and the train station. He tells us his ambition to bring a 'little piece of Camden' to Wiltshire by including in his redevelopment plans dedicated studios and workshop spaces for local artists, and hopes to include new venues to promote the area's music scene. Our tunes this week are courtesy of Devon duo, Sound of the Sirens, and Jonathan's choice is a Wiltshire based songwriter, Ben Borrill, who recently performed at the Innox Mill market. In news, we congratulate Wiltshire supergroup, The Lost Trades, on reaching the Top 40 of the UK Folk Chart, and we send our best wishes to last week's guest, Alan Pettifer, who was taken ill shortly after talking to us. This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Trowbridge and Jon Ponting in Cricklade.

Oct 9

28 min 45 sec

Joining us on this week's Sheer Isolation is songwriter and artist, Alan Pettifer. He's launching a new, monthly music night in North Wiltshire which brings together the best components from every folk night, open mic and charity show he's ever performed at. As well as promoting the Crudwell Music Club, he also talks about his time frequenting German folk clubs in the seventies, how his songwriting has raised tens and thousands for good causes, and the perils of selling CDs through online retailers. We've also got two tracks as always - this week we play a brand new tune from Bristol songwriter Sarah Larkham, and we play one of Alan's charity singles from 2011. In news, Kieran recaps on his first rap and hiphop event in Trowbridge last weekend, and we discuss if the fuel disruptions have left musicians, and their audiences, struggling to get to gigs. This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Trowbridge and Jon Ponting in Cricklade.

Oct 2

28 min 45 sec

Regular music nights are appearing back on the pub chalkboards as life continues to return to normal. That's music to the ears of this week's guest, Evie Em-Jay, who organises weekly jazz nights in Swindon. She talks to us about how she fell in love with the genre, and how she ended up being Swindon's premier jazz promoter. Her weekly music nights have now resumed at the Royal Oak in Old Town, and hopes that more of her venues will be welcoming back live music very soon. A truly eclectic mix of music is on offer this week with Evie picking a jazz melody from the Bristol based Hopkins Hammond Trio, and Kieran goes full rap with a track from Cardiff's Juice Menace, who's playing in Wiltshire this week. We also cover the news that UK law may be changing to pay musicians more for their streams, and that large music venues west of the Severn will be forced to check Covid ID before entry, but no such requirements are (so far) on the cards for England. This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Trowbridge and Jon Ponting in Cricklade.

Sep 25

28 min 48 sec

We're talking to Mike Williams on this week's Sheer Isolation, who is part of the team behind Corsham's Pound Arts venue. The town centre site includes a 100 seat auditorium for live events, exhibition spaces for artists, rehearsal rooms, workshops and a cafe. Mike explains how the centre has evolved into a community hub, with lots of Corsham's residents making the most of their unique facility. On the music menu, we play one from the vaults courtesy of Swindon three piece ska outfit, Slagerij, and Mike chooses a track from Kitty MacFarlane - a Somerset based singer who is performing at the venue later this year. In news, Kieran talks about Frank Turner's 2022 England tour dates, and the confusion over Covid passports for nightclubs rolls on. This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Trowbridge and Jon Ponting in Cricklade.

Sep 18

28 min 50 sec

This week's guest on Sheer Isolation is going old-school to help share community successes across the centre of Wiltshire. Ben Parkes is part of the team behind the newly launched Celebrate newspaper in Trowbridge. The idea of the paper is to promote local events, share good news stories and encourage more people to make their home town a more cheery and friendly place. We ask Ben why he's taken on this project, and what he sees are the advantages of promotion via a physical newspaper. On the music menu, we play a brand new tune from Chippenham/Bristol fuzzy rock outfit, The Erotic Secrets of Pompeii, and Ben picks a family favourite during lockdown... a single-take, quirky, sample and loop build-up from South African YouTube star, The Kiffness. In news, we get confused about next month's plans to introduce Covid passports for nightclubs and large venues in England, and we're not the only ones looking for clearer guidance. This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Chippenham and Jon Ponting in Cricklade.

Sep 11

28 min 48 sec

It was bound to happen eventually! We've turned the spotlight on ourselves for this week's Sheer Isolation. Our very own Jon Ponting explains how we grew from a local radio journalist to presenting and editing your favourite podcast about musicians from the West. He looks back on hosting open mic nights across North Wiltshire and the Cotswolds, helping out at community radio stations, and taking the reins at Westonbirt's Treefest Festival. We've also thrown a couple of songs into the mix; We have a new release from Bristol based songwriter, Onika Venus, and also a tune from the grandmaster of agricultural hiphop, Corky, who has just been announced as support for The Wurzels on their upcoming tour of the West later this year. In news, we big up the Swindon Shuffle which takes place in the town next weekend, and explain why a shortage of toilets is leading to event cancellations in the region. This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Chippenham and Jon Ponting in Cricklade. Don't forget to look for us on the schedule of your local community radio station; we're on the airwaves in Wiltshire, Gloucestershire and Somerset.

Sep 4

28 min 46 sec

For over two decades, a dedicated team has been working in Chippenham to reach out to marginalised communities and to offer support to the disaffected through music, film, art and sport. Ed Deedigan is the Director of Kandu Arts. He joins us on this week's Sheer Isolation to look back at how the project started, to promote their upcoming music and film festivals, and to thank the many people who have helped and supported the cause through the years. On the music menu, Ed selects a new track from Malmesbury based Will Lawton, the video for which was filmed at the Kandu Arts drop-in centre in the centre of Chippenham. Meanwhile Jon lowers the tone with his selection, courtesy of Cotswolds based parody artist, Silver Sam. We also look ahead to an event in Swindon next weekend in memory of previous Sheer guest and manager of Swindon's Vic and 12 Bar, Dave Young. The My Dad Is Bigger Than Your Dad event is raising money for Prospect Hospice. This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Trowbridge and Jon Ponting in Cricklade. Don't forget to look for us on the schedule of your local community radio station; we're on the airwaves in Wiltshire, Gloucestershire and Somerset.

Aug 21

28 min 50 sec

The Trowbridge Village Pump Festival has been a regular event on the summer calendar for decades, but in more recent years the musical line-up took a different turn, a new site meant the festival moved away from it's home town, and the organisers eventually called it a day. But after a successful one-off event in 2018, our guest this week has plans to revitalise the festival and bring it back to its former glory. Nick Reed has been a part of the festival since the eighties, from a child attending with his parents, to working backstage, and now taking a top seat in planning the 2022 event. He tells us about the festival's history, why it disappeared off the calendar, and how work is already underway for a weekend event next year. On the music menu, Nick chooses a track from traditional folk group Gigspanner, featuring Steeleye Span's Peter Knight. We also play a tune from south west based act Samantics, who is currently touring the UK with a previous guest on Sheer Isolation, Frank Turner. This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Trowbridge (and the Wye Valley) and Jon Ponting in Cricklade. Don't forget to look for us on the schedule of your local community radio station; we're on the airwaves in Wiltshire, Gloucestershire and Somerset.

Aug 14

28 min 46 sec

Our guest on Sheer Isolation this week has made it his mission to get the West's youngsters engaged with classical, opera and choir music. Adam Laughton is part of the team at the Wiltshire Music Centre in Bradford-on-Avon - a venue which showcases genres of music traditionally considered highbrow, while ensuring performances are fully inclusive, with workshops, events and rehearsal space to encourage teenagers to take up classical instruments and join youth orchestras and singing groups. On our playlist, Adam picks a live recording performance by Bristol's Fitzhardinge Consort. We also play a track from Wiltshire group, Port Erin, who are making a real-life appearance at this weekend's Bath Festival. This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Chippenham and Jon Ponting in Cricklade. Don't forget to look for us on the schedule of your local community radio station; we're on the airwaves in Wiltshire, Gloucestershire and Somerset.

Aug 7

28 min 45 sec

We are joined on this week's Sheer Isolation by Wiltshire's very own Kirsty Clinch. Kirsty is a folk musician who has more recently turned her attention to creating songs for toddlers. Over lockdown she illustrated and authored a children's song book which links to a series of short music videos on YouTube that she also produced. On top of this, she has also opened her own music school for young children with plans to expand into nurseries and village halls as more restrictions are eased. And with an impressive 111,000+ Instagram followers, she's got plenty of support for her many projects, although we learn that having that many followers comes with its own challenges! We play a couple of singer-songwriter tracks this week - one from Americana artist, Steve Hewitt, who will be playing in Trowbridge in August, and Kirsty's choice is a tune from UK based Texan, Arielle. In the news, we look at new rules coming into force next month for nightclubs and large venues to reduce the spread of Covid. This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Trowbridge and Jon Ponting in Cricklade. Don't forget to look for us on the schedule of your local community radio station; we're on the airwaves in Wiltshire, Gloucestershire and Somerset.

Jul 24

28 min 47 sec

After 63 episodes, this will be the last Sheer Isolation... to be recorded under Covid restrictions! Don't worry... we aren't ready to retire the show just yet! This week our guest is Dan Greeves who has recently set up his own music management business and plans to offer an alternative way for acts to get their music heard. The first band on the Pegasus books is Concrete Prairie; a folk act from Bristol, and he is looking for more untapped local talent to get in touch. Dan tells us why he's chosen now to return to the music industry after a 20 year absence, and why he thinks there is a better way to promote and support performers in the music industry. We play a tune from Concrete Prairie, as well as a song by Trowbridge based songwriter, Daisy Chapman. And in news, we look ahead to the 19th of July when most Covid restrictions in England will be lifted. What does this mean for live music, and why is Government advice for nightclubs still muddying the waters? This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Trowbridge and Jon Ponting in Cricklade. Don't forget to look for us on the schedule of your local community radio station; we're on the airwaves in Wiltshire, Gloucestershire and Somerset.

Jul 17

28 min 45 sec

On this week's Sheer Isolation we're joined by Sam Robinson, who's part of the team at Marlborough's CD & vinyl shop, Sound Knowledge. As well as the retail side, Sound Knowledge is also known for putting on in-store gigs and has hosted the likes of Ed Sheeran and Everything Everything since the shop was founded in the '90s. We talk about the resurgence of vinyl sales, how the pandemic has pushed them into online selling, and how Record Store Day has quickly become their busiest time of the year. On the music menu, we play a track from William Doyle, previously known as East India Youth, who is another musician to play at Sound Knowledge. We also play a tune from Bristol indie group, Parkas, who are playing in Swindon this week. In the news, we consider what our venues will look like after July 19th when legal social-distancing restrictions will be lifted. This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Trowbridge and Jon Ponting in Cricklade. Don't forget to look for us on the schedule of your local community radio station; we're on the airwaves in Wiltshire, Gloucestershire and Somerset.

Jul 10

28 min 47 sec

We're joined by comic book illustrator, Jess Bradley, on this week's Sheer Isolation. Jon's old classroom buddy from St. Joseph's in Swindon has gone on to bigger and better things, including having regular strips and stories published in the Beano and Phoenix. It's a rare moment in our podcast's history where our guest has seen workload increase during lockdown, with more of us buying comics online to keep our kids and ourselves entertained during the pandemic. Jess won a Blue Peter award for her last book, A Day In The Life of a Poo, a Gnu and You. We get her perspective of how publishers pick who to back, and consider the comparisons between illustrators such as herself, and grassroots musicians looking for a record deal. Jess has sequels on the way for A Day In The Life, plus a new series of comics called Super Dweeb - available later this year in all good bookshops ;) Our music choices this week include a gorgeous new acoustic melody from Bath based Luke De-Sciscio, and Jess chooses one of her favourites which helps the creative juices flow, courtesy of UK synthwave group, Gunship. In the news, we look at how Wiltshire's WOMAD festival has been forced to cancel for a second year. Could the Government be doing more to give festivals a fighting chance this summer? This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Trowbridge and Jon Ponting in Cricklade. Don't forget to look for us on the schedule of your local community radio station; we're on the airwaves in Wiltshire, Gloucestershire and Somerset.

Jul 3

28 min 45 sec

There are plans underway to turn a large, unused bandstand in the centre of Trowbridge into an active, outdoor stage for live performances this summer. The project is being led by Sally Snail who has promoted grassroots dance, music and stage shows in Wiltshire for more than two decades through her Starry Eyes project. She joins us on this week's Sheer Isolation to share her plans for the bandstand, how she hopes these events will bring communities back together after lockdown, and why she has chosen to fundraise for local Alzheimer's charities. We also play two shiny new tunes... the first from Swindon three piece, All Ears Avow, and a song/poem combo from Wiltshire's own country star, Kirsty Clinch. We also talk about how the Government's four week delay to easing restrictions has led to the cancellation of more music festivals, and how the difficulty getting events insurance is making matters worse. This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Trowbridge and Jon Ponting in Cricklade. Don't forget to look for us on the schedule of your local community radio station; we're on the airwaves in Wiltshire, Gloucestershire and Somerset.

Jun 26

28 min 49 sec

We're joined on this week's Sheer Isolation by musician, model maker and ecologist, Tom Haynes, a.k.a. Grasslands. Tom tells us about how he got to tell off Jeremy Clarkson for wanting to build a pond, and how that ended up featuring on the TV star's new Amazon Prime series; Clarkson's Farm. He also talks about recording sounds in nature which he converts into samples to create songs, why he played 30 gigs in 30 days just before Covid arrived, why he's always accompanied by a toy badger and wolf hat, and why he played a gig to a field of cows. Tunes this week include one of Tom's newest tunes, and we also play a track from indie acoustic songwriter, Get Cape. Wear Cape. Fly. In news, we discuss how the extended four week delay to restrictions has led to the cancellation of more local festivals, with one of Wiltshire's largest music weekends still hanging in the balance. This episode was created by Jon Ponting in Cricklade. Don't forget to look for us on the schedule of your local community radio station; we're on the airwaves in Wiltshire, Gloucestershire and Somerset.

Jun 19

28 min 51 sec

This week's Sheer Isolation is dedicated to the memory of Dave Young, who passed away last week. Before retiring, Dave was the man behind two of Swindon's most respected music venues - the Victoria and the 12Bar. He had an incredible passion for live music and was a key player in promoting  grassroots artists, as well as bringing internationally known acts into the town. He was our guest on Sheer Isolation last year, sharing stories from his time running music venues. We are replaying this interview, including additional bits which were originally edited out. Follow Sheer Music on the usual social platforms to find further information about Dave, of people sharing their memories and a JustGiving page.

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Jun 12

35 min 43 sec

We're joined on this week's Sheer Isolation by Tom Mallard from the Riverbank Studios in Chippenham. This community based recording and rehearsal studio offers support to teens through tutoring, reachout programmes, and giving young people a space to work together on musical projects. As if the impact of Covid wasn't bad enough, Riverbank also lost its home last year and has based itself temporarily in an empty retail unit in the centre of town. On the playlist, we have a tune from Bristol pop-rockers, Rozelle, who have a new EP coming out next month. Tom picks a track from Tea & Biscuits - a success story of the Riverbank Studios project. In other news, Kieran talks about how he's helping identify musicians from old demo tapes submitted to Glastonbury, and we discuss how a mini-version of Download is going ahead with a full UK line-up. This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Trowbridge and Jon Ponting in Cricklade. Don't forget to look for us on the schedule of your local community radio station; we're on the airwaves in Wiltshire, Gloucestershire and Somerset.

Jun 5

28 min 15 sec

Our guest on this week's Sheer Isolation has made it her mission to bring minority communities together through music, singing, and now movies. Lorena Pino Montilla moved from Venezuela to teach Spanish in Wiltshire, and has always looked for ways of reaching out to groups who may feel isolated due to language or religious barriers. She talks about how the Trowbridge Song Project brought women together to share cultural and traditional music with each other. Her latest project is working with Trowbridge Town Hall to screen films from around the globe, in a way that makes them accessible to as many people as possible. On the music front we're playing a double helping of traditional folk. Representing the UK we have The Albion Band, and Lorena's choice is the C4 Trio from Venezuela. We also talk about our first real-life gigs of the year, and the fiasco surrounding last week's virtual Glastonbury festival. This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Trowbridge and Jon Ponting in Cricklade. Don't forget to look for us on the schedule of your local community radio station; we're on the airwaves in Wiltshire, Gloucestershire and Somerset.

May 29

28 min 47 sec

On this week's Sheer Isolation we're joined by guitar teacher and sound tech at Walcot House, Jamie Williams. In the past year he's seen guitar students double with more lessons taking place on Zoom. And as well as getting prepared for the return of live music at his Bath based venue, he's also working on a new project to let kids teach other kids how to play instruments. On the playlist we have a new tune from songwriter, Doozer McDooze, and Jamie picks a track from one of his favourite local bands, Superlove. We also talk about Kieran's first outdoor live music gig of the year, and how our region's pubs and venues have finally been able to fill their calendars with live music and comedy. This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Trowbridge and Jon Ponting in Cricklade. Don't forget to look for us on the schedule of your local community radio station; we're on the airwaves in Wiltshire, Gloucestershire and Somerset.

May 22

28 min 47 sec

After more than a year of silence, the UK's grassroots musicians are starting to plan real-life events once again. Our guest on Sheer Isolation this week is flipping the perspective by encouraging communities in the West to put on events themselves, to help support seasoned singers, newbie performers and raise money for their village halls at the same time. Keith Hyett's Re-connect project encourages communities to work together to create a place where we can spend time with our friends and neighbours post-lockdown, and enjoy food, drink and music at the same time. We also discuss exciting developments at the Cheese & Grain in Frome, where you can find some of this year's Glastonbury line-up after the internationally renowned event was cancelled for the second year running. In our music selection this week, we play one of Keith's instrumental compositions; our other track is a new release from the Bath based Longcoats. This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Trowbridge and Jon Ponting in Cricklade. Don't forget to look for us on the schedule of your local community radio station; we're on the airwaves in Wiltshire, Gloucestershire and Somerset.

May 15

28 min 45 sec

The past year has highlighted the need for mental health awareness across all sectors from big business to individuals. On this week's Sheer Isolation we're joined by Tracy Sullivan from Open Minds Mental Health. She offers accessible training that helps us understand and better communicate with people who are struggling with depression and anxiety. As we start to socialise again post-lockdown and get ready for live events to begin in a few weeks time, concerns about anxiety and mixing are high on a lot of people's minds. Before starting this worthy cause, Tracy was behind the creation of Trowbridge Arts Centre. Also in this week's show, Kieran announces exciting live music news with local gigs for Frank Turner and Salem, featuring Creeper frontman Will Gould. Our tracks include the latest release from Salem in preparation for their UK tour, and Tracy picks a track from Bradford-on-Avon (now Brighton) four piece, Hum Fuzz. This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Trowbridge and Jon Ponting in Cricklade. Don't forget to look for us on the schedule of your local community radio station; we're on the airwaves in Wiltshire, Gloucestershire and Somerset.

May 8

28 min 47 sec

We're joined on this week's Sheer Isolation by Dave Webber and Deb Hannis from the Chippenham Folk Festival. Due to take place at the end of May, the four-day festival is being streamed online this year with organisers teaming up with the Chester Folk Festival to create a one-off weekend of collaborated gigs, workshops and dancing. We play a track from one of the event's headliners - Exeter based folk giants, Show of Hands. We also feature a new track from Odain, with vocals provided by Krush Landing - a singer from the West who's involved with the Life 2020 project (as covered in our previous show). Kieran also brings a guitar amp to show-and-tell, and we share the positive vibes of seeing musicians taking to beer gardens for impromptu 'incidental' gigs. This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Trowbridge and Jon Ponting in Cricklade. Don't forget to look for us on the schedule of your local community radio station; we're on the airwaves in Wiltshire, Gloucestershire and Somerset.

Apr 24

28 min 47 sec

On this week's Sheer Isolation we're joined by Isha McIntosh from the Bristol based community project, Life 2020. As well as helping with life skills, wellbeing and alternative learning, Life 2020 provides a platform to upcoming musicians by booking them to play at networking events. With lockdown restrictions being lifted, the team are now planning to take these meet-ups out of Bristol, starting with a visit to Wiltshire this summer. Isha tells us more about the non-for-profit group, and the importance of providing entrepreneurs in black and minority communities with the encouragement and motivation to chase their ambitions. Music choices are as wide-ranging as ever... Isha picks a hip-hop track from PRZY, who performed at a previous Life 2020 event. We also share an indie-math instrumental rock track from Parachute For Gordo, who are planning a mini tour in the West this August. We also consider a loophole in England's current lockdown rules which lets venues book outdoor music as long as they can prove punters aren't there to listen to the performance. This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Trowbridge and Jon Ponting in Cricklade. Don't forget to look for us on the schedule of your local community radio station; we're on the airwaves in Wiltshire, Gloucestershire and Somerset.

Apr 17

28 min 49 sec

It won't be long until venues across the West come out of hibernation and start entertaining us again. The team at Trowbridge Town Hall have used their time over lockdown to breathe fresh life into the building. Our guest on this week's Sheer Isolation is Events Manager, Jess Bennett. She tells us about their new space for live music, new cinema room and their plans for showcasing live music and comedy later this year. Our music choices this week include a new acoustic session recording of Bath based group, Young Martyrs, and Jess picks a live recording of rhythm & blues band, The Worried Men. We also revisit the idea of vaccine passports for venues, and for the first time in 50 episodes we lose our link over Zoom. This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Trowbridge and Jon Ponting in Cricklade. Don't forget to look for us on the schedule of your local community radio station; we're on the airwaves in Wiltshire, Gloucestershire and Somerset.

Apr 10

28 min 44 sec

On this week's Sheer Isolation we're joined by Adam Horovitz who's the Arts Correspondent from new online publication, the Stroud Times. The virtual newspaper hopes to breathe fresh life into local journalism by sharing community articles that are free from clickbait and shock-tactic social media posts. Adam talks to us about why Stroud is such a hub for original music, theatre and poetry, and how townsfolk have been supporting their venues and businesses over the past year. We're staying in Stroud with this week's music choices also; Adam selects an experimental electro piece from Mermaid Chunky, and we also play a new tune from Emily Barker which takes inspiration from the Black Lives Matter movement. We also pay respects to Swindon Advertiser journalist and choir videographer, Flicky Harrison, who sadly passed away recently. This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Trowbridge and Jon Ponting in Cricklade. Don't forget to look for us on the schedule of your local community radio station; we're on the airwaves in Wiltshire, Gloucestershire and Somerset.

Apr 3

28 min 47 sec

You get two guests for the price of one on this week's Sheer Isolation as we continue our quest to celebrate the West of England's music, art and theatre scenes after a year of lockdowns. We're joined by Dan Petley, who in 2011 created a community led piece of artwork known as the Brick Project. Since then he's overseen similar schemes in the UK and Europe, and is hopeful of getting the paint-pots out from storage later this year. We also talk to Fraisia Dunn who is from the Sedated by Brick Theatre troupe in Bristol. After a year of no performances they have just started getting the wheels in motion for a new adaptation of an Ursula Le Guin novel. Both guests are also experimental musicians, and are part of the surprisingly large group of bin painters at the Glastonbury Festival. Music this week is provided by ex-Wiltshire based songwriter, Jess Vincent, and our guests pick a tune from fellow festival bin doodlers, Stanlӕy. In news, we report that Forest Live has sadly been postponed for the second year running, but Kieran brings positive news about new gigs that are in his calendar. This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Trowbridge and Jon Ponting in Cricklade. Don't forget to look for us on the schedule of your local community radio station; we're on the airwaves in Wiltshire, Gloucestershire and Somerset.

Mar 27

29 min 9 sec

One of the founders of Minety Festival, Rich Swatton, joins us on this week's Sheer isolation. The weekend long festival is due to go ahead just two weeks after the UK's current schedule for fully unlocking, making it one of the first festivals to take place in Wiltshire. Rich tells us about the challenges that brings, who's on the 2021 line-up, and how the event has gained such popularity since it's launch just five years ago. Both tunes this week are picked by Rich. We play a track from his own band, The Dirty Smooth, and an acoustic session recording from Bath based Enter Red - both groups are on this year's Minety line-up. We also put a shout out for musicians and duos to make themselves known as venues across the region dust off their diaries and start to plan gigs for late summer and autumn. This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Trowbridge and Jon Ponting in Cricklade. Don't forget to look for us on the schedule of your local community radio station; we're on the airwaves in Wiltshire, Gloucestershire and Somerset. https://vurbl.com/

Mar 20

28 min 48 sec

It wasn't long after the Government announced provisional dates for unlocking England that festival organisers started stocking up on gaffer tape, charging their walkie-talkies and getting ready to open their doors after a fallow year. Andy Rae is one of the founders of Gloucestershire's 2000 Trees Festival. He joins us on Sheer Isolation to talk about their plans for this July, in particular how they want the four day event to be as normal as possible, while being conscious that another blip in the Covid stats could scupper plans for the second year running. We also come up with a Flaming Lips-style workaround for keeping the event open, but quickly find a flaw in the plan. On the music menu we've got a sweet, acoustic ditty from the most Glaswegian Bristolian we know; The Lonely Tourist has a new release out. And Andy picks a metal/pop/alt track off Canadian group, The Dirty Nil's new album. Also, in what's becoming an unintended regular feature, Kieran has a pop at the Performing Rights Society. This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Chippenham and Jon Ponting in Cricklade.

Mar 13

28 min 48 sec

We're joined on this week's Sheer Isolation by an 18 year old who's tipped to become one the UK's premier lighting technicians for live events. Malmesbury based George Davies has already taken the reigns at Minety Festival, and lit up the likes of Republica and Spice Girl, Mel C. He talks about how he started his business at just 16, and what he's planning to do in the coming years. On the music front we play a track from Swindon's own hip-hop reggae collective, The Tribe, and Kieran picks out some math rock from Let's Swim Get Swimming. There's also some exciting news for local musicians as Soundcloud announcing plans to change it's structure for paying artists for streams. This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Trowbridge and Jon Ponting in Cricklade. Don't forget to look for us on the schedule of your local community radio station; we're on the airwaves in Wiltshire, Gloucestershire and Somerset.

Mar 6

28 min 48 sec

On this week's Sheer Isolation we're playing the second part of our Brian Keen interview. The Swindon soundman has packed up his PA and has retired onto a narrowboat. He looks back at some of his favourite venues and festivals, talks about how a year in lockdown has disrupted plans to tour the UK's canal network, and tells us how he lost his home when 1970s rock band, Ace, lived next door. In the week where the UK Government announced a four month plan to begin unlocking the nation, Kieran predicts how this year's festival season may play out. On the music menu we have two new tunes - one from Wiltshire supergroup The Lost Trades, and one from Fear of Ghosts - a New Zealand band fronted by ex-Malmesbury musician, John Shilibeer. This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Trowbridge and Jon Ponting in Cricklade. Don't forget that safe-for-work audio versions of Sheer Isolation are available by searching your podcast provider, or look for us on the schedule of your local community radio station; we're on the airwaves in Wiltshire, Gloucestershire and Somerset.

Feb 27

28 min 48 sec

Last week, the organisers of the Devizes Festival confirmed that Covid has forced them into cancelling their two-week long programme of June events for the second year running. Margaret Bryant joins us on Sheer Isolation to share what it's like being part of the Devizes team, her highlights from previous festivals, and how the team never shy away from inviting well known and controversial people to join their line-up. In other news, we look at the concept of introducing rapid Covid testing into the UK's nightclubs and music events this summer. Our music selection includes a couple of tracks from 2016 for no other reason than coincidence - from Exeter's Jonah Hitchens and the Bristol based Homegrown Collective. This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Trowbridge and Jon Ponting in Cricklade. Musicians are very welcome to send us videos to feature as well as any news or gigs - virtual or otherwise - sheerisolation@gmail.com

Feb 20

28 min 49 sec

On this week's Sheer Isolation we're joined by Tony McLoughlin, who's been promoting and distributing the latest music releases to shops across the land since the 1980s. He tells us about his time at Tower Records in Piccadilly where his career started, and how the decline of physical CD sales means there's less demand for distributors, and how that part of the music industry is being replaced in a streaming world. On the tunes front we have a new track from Salisbury metal duo Next Stop Olympus, and Tony picks an artist who steered him into a life of music, Frank Zappa. This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Trowbridge and Jon Ponting in Cricklade. Thank you for your continued positive feedback on this series. Musicians are very welcome to send us videos to feature as well as any news or gigs - virtual or otherwise - sheerisolation@gmail.com

Feb 13

28 min 49 sec

Forest Live - which brings international touring artists to four of England's most popular woodland sites - is celebrating its 20th anniversary this summer. Joining us on this week's Sheer Isolation is Simon Hough, who's part of the Forest Live team and based at our local Forestry Commission venue: Westonbirt Arboretum near Tetbury. As well as promoting this year's line-up, and staying optimistic that the event will be able to go ahead this summer, Simon also recalls the very first Forest Live, reminisces of the Treefest festival which was held at Westonbirt until 2016, and spreads the word that the arboretum is open to locals who book in advance. Music this week is courtesy of a new track from Devizes based funk duo Funkin' Hell, and Simon's choice is one of his Forest Live highlights from Gruff Rhys. This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Trowbridge and Jon Ponting in Cricklade. Musicians are very welcome to send us videos to feature as well as any news or gigs - virtual or otherwise - sheerisolation@gmail.com

Feb 6

28 min 49 sec

Bringing live music performances to people in our most remote villages, our guest on this week's Sheer Isolation is Gavin Osborn from the Wiltshire Rural Music charity. In normal times, Gavin would be taking musicians on tour in mobile libraries across the county. This year his charity work has adapted to help the most isolated with care home gigs through Zoom and setting up a dial-a-musician scheme. We also cover the news that Glastonbury Festival has once again been cancelled - what does that mean for the rest of the 2021 festival calendar. And, are musicians getting enough revenue from streaming? This week's music includes an older tune from Bristol rock outfit, Thought Forms, and a double-feature live shanty from Street's Nick Parker. This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Trowbridge and Jon Ponting in Cricklade. Musicians are very welcome to send us videos to feature as well as any news or gigs - virtual or otherwise - sheerisolation@gmail.com

Jan 23

28 min 47 sec

Joining us on this week's Sheer Isolation is Brian Keen - one of the West's longest-serving sound engineers. Bri has been part of Swindon's music scene for years, and spent several years hosting a local music show on Swindon 105.5 with our very own Jon. In this two part interview, we go back to the seventies when Bri was first starting out in the music industry, his time spent at Island Records working with upcoming artists who went on to become the household names, going on tour with Ultravox, and how technology has changed the role of the sound engineer as we've moved from requiring tonnes of machinery to needing just a laptop with a studio app. On the music front we have a brand new track from Devizes grunge act Gary Martian, and Bri picks a tune from one of his favourite acts, Cirencester Americana duo, The Black Feathers. Meanwhile, Kieran has another rant about the latest idea from the PRS, and shares the news of his first gig of the year. This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Trowbridge and Jon Ponting in Cricklade. Musicians are very welcome to send us videos to feature as well as any news or gigs - virtual or otherwise - sheerisolation@gmail.com

Jan 23

28 min 48 sec

On this week's Sheer Isolation we're joined by Somerset storyteller, Michael Loader. Representing yet another overlooked arm of the entertainment industry, Michael has spent more time in the last twelve months writing and researching for new projects because live events in care homes, schools and festivals have all been called off. He gives us a glimpse of his new, original tale, and tells a fascinating story about an arts exchange project which took him all the way to Bethlehem for a gig. One of our tracks this week is connected to the friends Michael made on this journey... we play a tune from Palestinian artist Zaid Hilal. We also play a brand new track that was made closer to home by Devizes based blues artist, Jon Amor. This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Trowbridge and Jon Ponting in Cricklade. Musicians are very welcome to send us videos to feature as well as any news or gigs - virtual or otherwise - sheerisolation@gmail.com

Jan 16

28 min 47 sec

We're back from our festive break; ready to bring you another weekly slice of news and views from the West of England's music scene. On this week's Sheer Isolation, we're looking at how Brexit is going to affect UK musicians who were planning on touring the European mainland later this year. We're joined by Folklaw frontman, Nick Gibbs, who's been busy researching the rules and downloading the relevant paperwork so his band can legally play the German festival scene. He shares his knowledge for anyone else who's planning a musical trip to Europe this year, and lets us know some of the pitfalls to be avoided. On the music front we play a sweet track with a heart-warming video from Cirencester duo, Ethemia, and Nick picks an acoustic punk track from a musician he met while touring the continent, a home recording by Nottingham's Paul Carbuncle. This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Chippenham and Jon Ponting in Cricklade. Thank you for your continued positive feedback on this series. Musicians are very welcome to send us videos to feature as well as any news or gigs - virtual or otherwise - sheerisolation@gmail.com

Jan 9

28 min 48 sec

This week's guest is the author behind 'It Takes Blood and Guts' - the biography of Skin from Skunk Anansie. She also wrote 'She Bop' back in 1995 which explored how women were cutting through the male-dominated music industry. Lucy O'Brien has just released a revised version to mark the 25th anniversary of the books first print. She joins us on this week's Sheer Isolation to discuss why She Bop was such a groundbreaking release, how the imbalances and bias in the industry are shifting, and about working at the NME in the eighties. Music this week is provided by Bath songwriter Sam Eason who released a feelgood lockdown track earlier this year, and our guest picks a tune from Black Box Recorder. This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Trowbridge and Jon Ponting in Cricklade. Musicians are very welcome to send us videos to feature as well as any news or gigs - virtual or otherwise - sheerisolation@gmail.com

Dec 2020

28 min 50 sec

Joining us on this week's Sheer Isolation we have Warminster based music and events promoter, Leander Morales. He would usually be working with venues across the region, booking in touring bands and comedians. Instead, like so many in the music industry, he's gone back to his day job. But with the UK's Covid vaccine rollout about to start, he's starting to plan for events in a few months time. On the music menu we've unintentionally picked two Bath based rock outfits - a spanking new track from the spanking new band, The Byker Grove Fan Club, and Leander picks a tune from fellow Bath-based rockers, Ulysses. This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Trowbridge and Jon Ponting in Cricklade. Thank you for your continued positive feedback on this series. Musicians are very welcome to send us videos to feature as well as any news or gigs - virtual or otherwise - sheerisolation@gmail.com

Dec 2020

28 min 48 sec

For the past five years Safe Gigs For Women has been working tirelessly to break through taboos, raise awareness and offer support to victims of sexual assaults at festivals and music venues across the UK. Their volunteers have a growing presence at gigs and their logo has become a mark of reassurance to show women that event organisers are there to help and support them should the unthinkable happen. Mel Kelly has been with SGFW since the beginning. She's our guest on this week's Sheer Isolation. We talk about the organisation, why it needs to exist, and how attitudes and awareness are changing for the better. We also feature a new release from Bath based Fonzy Amor & Company, and Mel chooses an emotive tune by US folk singer, Bug Hunter. This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Trowbridge and Jon Ponting in Cricklade. Thank you for your continued positive feedback on this series.  Musicians are very welcome to send us videos to feature as well as any news or gigs - virtual or otherwise - sheerisolation@gmail.com

Nov 2020

28 min 45 sec

On this week's Sheer Isolation we're joined by Talis Kimberley-Fairbourne - a keen folk musician, knitter, environmentalist and campaigner. Her summer's are usually filled with festival slots, folk clubs and entertaining the crowds at protest marches. She talks to us about what inspired her to use music to help right the world's wrongs, her kitchen sessions series, and ponders what Christmas will be like without the traditional groups of carollers. We've also got two easy-on-the-ear tracks this week... One from Swindon songwriter, Paul Lappin; the other from Wiltshire folk band, The Yirdbards, which was recorded at the Bradford-on-Avon folk club last year, back when gigs happened in real life. This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Trowbridge and Jon Ponting in Cricklade. Thank you for your continued positive feedback on this series. Safe For Work audio versions are available by searching on your podcast provider, and listen out for us on community radio stations across the region. Musicians are very welcome to send us videos to feature as well as any news or gigs - virtual or otherwise - sheerisolation@gmail.com

Nov 2020

28 min 45 sec

Floating in Bristol's harbour, The Thekla is one of Bristol's iconic music venues. On this week's Sheer Isolation we're joined by one of her sound engineers. Fiona Riches tells a familiar story of what she's been doing this year while the Thekla, and her job, have been put on indefinite hold. She also talks about recent renovation works to the vessel, a new-found love of pottery, and why any sound engineer would want to be in charge of controlling sound in the ship's metal hull. Two new, local tracks for you this week. One from Wiltshire based country/pop songwriter, Kirsty Clinch. The other from Poisonous Birds - an electro/rock trio from Bristol. This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Trowbridge and Jon Ponting in Cricklade. Musicians are very welcome to send us videos to feature as well as any news or gigs - virtual or otherwise - sheerisolation@gmail.com

Nov 2020

28 min 48 sec

We're continuing our talk with David Young this week, who used to run two of Swindon's most well known music venues - The Victoria and the 12Bar. This week he tells us about life behind the scenes... dealing with promoters, how to handle raucous bands and what was in his very expensive lost and found box. Our tracks are something old and something new this week. From the late noughties we have Cheltenham rock-poppers, Loungefly. We also feature a track off the new album from US Blues sensation, Fantastic Negrito. This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Trowbridge and Jon Ponting in Cricklade. Thank you for your continued positive feedback on this series. Safe For Work audio versions are available by searching on your podcast provider, and listen out for us on community radio stations across the region. Musicians are very welcome to send us videos to feature as well as any news or gigs - virtual or otherwise - sheerisolation@gmail.com

Nov 2020

28 min 46 sec

This week on Sheer Isolation we're taking a break from discussing 2020 to chat with a man who retired from the live music scene several years ago. Dave Young used to run the Victoria and the 12Bar in Swindon, and in his time booked many well known names to play in the town. In Part One of this interview, we look back at when he and Anna first took over the Vic in 2004, along with some memorable stories from the first few years. Dave picks a tune from Swindon trio, Hip Route, featuring vocals from Reef's Gary Stringer. We also play a track from the upcoming album of Abingdon based The Sad Song Co. This episode was created by Kieran Moore in Trowbridge and Jon Ponting in Cricklade. Thank you for your continued positive feedback on this series. Listen out for us on community radio stations across the region. Musicians are very welcome to send us videos to feature as well as any news or gigs - virtual or otherwise - sheerisolation@gmail.com

Oct 2020

28 min 50 sec