Midnight mixtape

And so… as the hours of the day draw to a close, you can now experience my first mixtape made with an iPad while alone in a hotel in Scotland.

Enjoy the night time!

We were made in the dark:



Will these memory flashes fade? Coping with the coping mechanism

Here are some words from me for our ongoing series of blogs over at http://www.nosideeffectsmusic.com

Coping Mechanisms

Following Ade’s recent blog on loss, Tom considers how we walk through the maze of healing and tries to understand how the brain reacts to loss.

Ade’s recent blog about death and how we cope with such things has made me think about the ghosts and shadows that haunt my life. It has been almost 12 months since I separated from my wife and the pain of that event is still present. Ade wrote that ‘much in life becomes trivial and is rendered superfluous in the wake of a loved one’s permanent absence’. I have said many times that it would have been easier to cope with my wife’s death, rather than the circumstances under which we parted ways. In that scenario there would have been an end to our story, but there wasn’t one, there was just a sudden transition to a different form of life.


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The Renegade Sessions are go!

SoP Live - Bookers and Promoters of the best in underground and grassroots live music.......

It has been in the planning stages for a while, but, as part of a wider review of what we do, how we do it, and where, we are launching, in conjunction with the top folks at Renegade Brewery, live music at the rather cool Baila Coffee & Vinyl on Victoria Road in Old Town.

baila_2522016151053But live music in a coffee shop I hear you say? Well, yes, the core of the business may be as a coffee shop, but it is the antithesis of the identikit chains which are taking over the high street, , much like us at SoP. Additionally, along with the very friendly vibe of the place there is a rather tasty vinyl rack, which follows the shops quality over quantity way of operating, stuffed full of seminal albums and underground collectibles, the cream of the leftfield, everything from rock and soul, dance and hip-hop, funk, pop and even…

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Grasslands live at the Roaring Donkey in Swindon

Without enough practice to make him comfortable, Tom has decided to take his collection of Grasslands songs outside his studio and attempt to play them in a coherent manner to audiences of humans in places that he likes.

Here is the type of thing you can expect (backwards and sped-up, thus making it not exactly what you can expect).

Tom’s first gig is at the Roaring Donkey in Swindon on Wednesday 20th April in support of George Wilding.

Here are the full details: https://www.facebook.com/events/845523335570906/

Come and say ‘hi’ or give me a Mars Bar, it’s up to you which you want to do.

Who Cares What The Laser Says? – White Wine (reviewed by Thomas Haynes)

Here is my review of White Wine’s cool new album

Dancing About Architecture

White-Wine-Cover-2500White Wine’s new album ‘Who Cares What The Laser Says?’ is a twisted broken treat to listen to. Joe Haege’s antagonistic vocal delivery flashes over the synths and awkward beats and the lyrics are well written and delivered. His angst filled delivery is on show in the second track ‘Where’s My Line?’ (see the video below). You will also quickly assimilate the chant of ‘I’m a sick and narcissistic sycophant!’ from the track ‘Bullet Points Like Swords’.

The album title is a sentiment against technological progress, which feels well represented within both the lyrics and the soundscape of the album. Many of the drumbeats present are stop/start, which keeps you on edge as the album progresses.

There is a dark moodiness to much of Side A (I am so happy to see the two side album concept still in effect). The opening track ‘Is This Weird?’ reminds me of a…

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Who fancies a Grasslands music curated Bank Holiday?

Are you bored this Bank Holiday Monday? Want to listen to some music? It’s been a very productive period in the cold and wet meadows where Grasslands hangs around and he’s happy to present his current musical offerings, so look no further, Grasslands can keep you occupied for hours.

No Side Effects
Over the past few months Tom has been releasing electronic music with his wildlife partner-in-crime Adrian as ‘No Side Effects’.

They have released three singles which reflect on how we all cope with this rapidly changing modern world. First up is their debut, ‘Isolation Explosion’, which is a dark synth laden mid-tempo tune with some fuzzy guitars and beat boxing.


Their second single ‘In Your Brain Right Now’ is a crazy jamming session built around a lecture by philosopher Sam Harris about controlling the mind.


Their third single ‘Dark Light’ is a synth heavy number with Tom on drumming and harmony duties. They even recorded a video for this one featuring both Tom and Ade getting blinded by strobe lights and pretending to be serious.


Fancy something a bit more academic? Why not check out the duos first two podcasts about social anxiety and loneliness or read the range of blog articles they have both written on these subjects.


Grasslands – Hidden! Ninja! Action! – Mixtape
Tom started 2016 by releasing his hour long mixtape about ninjas. The mixtape includes a range of genres from Ska to Pirate Rap and features samples of ninjas from film and TV. There’s been a lot of love for this mix so please do check it out:

Grasslands videos
Tom is warming up for his first Grasslands gig which will be at the Roaring Donkey in Swindon on the 20th April.


As part of his practice sessions he’s put together some performance videos. The videos include: ‘The Ball Starts To Move’ one of Tom’s most popular songs; an acoustic version of ‘This Is The Way I Rationalise’ and an acoustic cover of Tasmin Archer’s ‘Sleeping Satellite’.

Grasslands EPs
Tom is just starting work on recording ‘EP3: Small Town Justice’, so now is a good time to catch up with ‘EP1: Time To Think’ and ‘EP2: My Folks Prefer The Clone’. Check them out below.



Enjoy and do subscribe for further news and check out the Facebook and Twitter feeds.

Naubinway – Adam Levy (reviewed by Thomas Haynes)

Here is my review of Adam Levy’s emotional new album

Dancing About Architecture

This is AdA16AX32QBGL._SX355_am Levy’s first solo album away from his band The Honey Dogs. For the most part, the album is a stripped back, folky affair with some subtle country elements. The songs are mid-tempo with Levy’s impressive finger picking style prominent and his soft vocals standing above the mix of acoustic guitars. However, this album is more than just folky guitars.

The stand out tracks for me are ‘Eucastrophe’ which features more production values than some of the other tracks, with its broken fairy tale-like ambient intro reminiscent of Sparklehorse and ‘Atoms never die’ features some nice ambient synthesisers (and what a brilliant lyric). ‘Potter’s Field’ is also a great track with a nice head bopping country beat.

The lyrics are complex and influenced by a very difficult time in Levy’s life: The loss of his son. His son’s striking macabra artwork is presented on the record sleeve…

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Hidden! Ninja! Action! Mixtape Full Track List

Here is the full track list for my recent DJ/Mixtape release: Hidden! Ninja! Action!

Be warned the list is quite long!


You can listen to the full mix on soundcloud and mixcloud:

Full Track List:

Mortal Kombat Trilogy
The Hunted Soundtrack
James Bond: You Only Live Twice
Ninja In The Dragon’s Den
Silversun Pickups – Panic Switch
Rustie – Death Mountain
American Ninja
Batman Begins
Glitch Mob – Animus Vox
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (1990)
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (1987)
Horse The Band – Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles
Rhythm Method – Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles
Ninja: Silent Assassin
Tomoyasu Hotei – Battle without Honour
7 Seconds of Love – Ninja
La Roux – In for the Kill (Skream’s Let’s Get Ravey remix)
Ninjas Secret History of the Ninja Uncovered
The Vapors – Turning Japanese
The Hunted
Enter The Ninja
Captain Dan and the Scurvy Crew – Ninja Hater
Ninja Squad
The Japanese Popstars – Fight The Night
The Dark Knight Rises
Bane Outtakes (Auralnauts extended edition)
Die Antwoord – Enter the Ninja
Ninja Sentai Kakuranger
Mercury Rev – The Dark is Rising
G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra
Ninja Gaiden
Mortal Kombat: Defenders of the Realm
Ninja in the Dragon’s Den
Europe – Ninja
G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra
Muse – Assassin
Metal Gear Solid
Vanilla Ice – Ninja Rap
331 Erock – Ninja Gaiden (4-2) Meets Metal
Mortal Kombat Trilogy
Mortal Kombat: Defenders of the Realm
Cyber Ninja Trailer
Mortal Kombat: Annihilation
The Chemical Brothers – Battle Scars
Mortal Kombat: Defenders of the Realm
65daysofstatic – Retreat! Retreat!
Metal Gear Solid
Mortal Kombat: Defenders of the Realm
Smashing Pumpkins – We Only Come Out At Night
Final Fantasy VI – Shadow’s Theme
SONOIO – Unpredictable
G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra
U2 – Wake Up Dead Man

Join the Grasslands Facebook page and join in posting pictures of ninjas:


Who can fight a ninja?


The Hunted

How many famous people in films and TV do you think have had a scrap with a ninja? Who has rapped about ninjas (quite a few people, surprisingly)? Who has become a ninja?

Tom HardyChritopher LambertLiam NeesonSean_Connery_1964

My Grasslands DJ mix includes the vocal performances of: Tom Hardy, Liam Neeson, Sean Connery, Christopher Lambert (when he isn’t beheading people he seems to have issues with ninjas), Vanilla Ice, and Luc Perry from Beverly Hills 90210 (he was a ninja once, don’t you know).

Luc Perry

You can listen to the mix on soundcloud


and mixcloud.


New tune ‘Dark Light’ released plus our first Music Video!!!

One of my favourite songs I have been involved in ever and a video of me being blinded by some strobe lights

Tom 1 - DL Video

We are really pleased to release our brand new single Dark Light which will feature on our upcoming album. We also found time in our busy wildlife schedules to record our very first music video.

Ade 1 - DL VideoLantern Still DL - Video

Both Tom and Ade feature in the video trying to pretend to look serious while they are blinded by strobe lights and attempt to throw themselves down some staircases.

Watch the video here:

Dark Light is one of Tom and Ade’s favourite songs and Tom has gone as far as saying that it his is favourite song he has ever recorded. So it just had to be a single, didn’t it?

The B-Side includes a demo version of an album track called ‘Turn Right and You Have Reached Your Death’. This demo was recorded by Tom while in a cottage in Norfolk and was referenced in his recent blog about solitude.

Download both…

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