Cassia live at Manchester Cathedral | Manchester

Cassia live at Manchester Cathedral

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DHP Family Proudly Present...
Live at Manchester Cathedral
31st October 2019
14+ (under 16s to be accompanied by an adult)
Tickets go on sale Friday 29th March at 10am. Set a reminder here:
It’s hard not to smile when Cassia are in the room – be it during an interview or watching them joyfully play headline dates to sold-out audiences. Their infectious personalities glow just as much as their sun-drenched calypso sound which, as Clash described, “transforms even the dreariest of days into a feel good carnival.” Cassia combine the positive indie pop of bands like Foals and Vampire Weekend with the jazz-tinged afrobeats of Fela Kuti and Ebo Taylor and American folk influences like Paul Simon to create an individual sound that uplifts. In the words of Gigwise, the music comes from a band “on a mission to spread positivity.”
“We wanted to create a feeling of vibrancy when people listen to us,” lead singer and guitarist Rob Ellis says, something echoed by his fellow bandmates, bassist Lou Cotterill and drummer Jacob Leff. Having met variously between school and the gig circuit of their home – the northern market town of Macclesfield – the trio discovered a shared love of world music inspired by the travels of Rob’s family. His father and grandfather lived in Zambia for several years and both returned with a record collection documenting the sound of their travels. During his teenage years, Rob started to explore the collection in more detail – something which sparked a curiosity in listening to music from afar.
“I listened to the records they had amassed but then we also came across a website where you can go through decades of music from all over the world and we listened to so much, including music from fifties and sixties Cuba and the Congo. It was just such an incredible, interesting discovery,” Rob explains. “If you listen to Fela Kuti he was an artist we were enthused by mostly because he used music to create positivity and that’s what we wanted to do with our own music.” Other artists the band drew upon were Franco and Paul Simon; later, they started to experiment with different instruments as a result of their musical discoveries. “Jake brought a djembe drum to rehearsals one day and it completely changed our sound and the way we went on to write music together,” Rob describes. “The drum was made of Cassia wood and that’s how we came up with our name. As it developed our sound so much, we knew we had to stick with this for our name!”
At such a divisive time socially, Cassia believe unity can be found through music – but not necessarily by preaching a political message. “Our music is the antithesis of that right now,” Rob says. “We want to play shows where people can just dance, groove and have a good time enjoying what is hopefully uplifting and unique sounds that they might not have heard before. That’s far more important to us than pushing out something that’s an egotistical edit of some kind.”
Cassia’s sound is one quickly chiming with audiences, having already sold out headline dates both in the UK and Europe. Playing to a homecoming capacity crowd at Manchester’s O2 Ritz as well as The Garage in London, the band have amassed a large following having pursued a largely traditional route via local gigging whilst writing and rehearsing in their local studio. Their vibrant live shows have proven a joy with fans, something that resulted in them earning a nomination for Best Live Act at the Association of Independent Music Awards alongside Idles and DMA’s. The band have a busy summer ahead, beginning with a performance at Kendal Calling.
Lyrically, Cassia draw from the ordinary – from everyday life, routine conversations and the importance of recognising the little things in life amidst the chaos as is perhaps epitomised by one of the band’s favourite songs from the album: ‘Loosen Up.’ “We think ‘Loosen Up’ is one of the best tracks we’ve come up with together so far,” Rob believes. “It sums up what we think is important as a band and the message we want to spread in the future. We want to write music for people to loosen up but to also come together with to. It’s definitely one of our favourites, we think it’s a bop.”
Speaking about the band recently, Rob Adcock from BBC Introducing described Cassia as “one of the most exciting bands to come out of Manchester in years.” With their confident combination of carefree lyricism, joyful melodies and infectious riffs, 2019 feels like the year when Cassia will finally emerge as one of the UK’s brightest young talents. You can’t help but smile when you listen.


Thursday, October 31st 2019 07:00pm


Manchester Cathedral
10 Cateaton Street Manchester Manchester M3 1 United Kingdom

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