Blog : TIC #14 – first notes on my most ambitious project to date

This post was originally published in secret, for the eager eyes of The Inner Circle – click here to sign up and you’ll receive the next one!

“I was glad I was late”, said the music reviewer who didn’t catch a note of my performance last week at Manchester’s beautiful Deaf Institute venue last Thursday but was somehow moved to publicly share his friend’s statement that I was so “shockingly bad, it almost made [him] go home”. And so started my week! (PS Kerrang! were much nicer…)

I couldn’t give two figs whether someone likes my music or not – I dislike most things I hear – but reviewing by proxy is beyond the pale. I do think there should be a basic level of respect given in these circumstances – how about if you weren’t in the room, you don’t get to tell your audience I suck? *My* audience that night were bloody lovely, incidentally, going by the clapping and cheering they sent towards the stage between songs. Unless they were the claps and cheers of hate…

I was uncharacteristically not looking forward to my shows supporting Lonely The Brave last week, purely because I started the year croaking and sneezing from the confines of my sofa. Solidarity to anyone else under the weather at the moment. Thankfully, the worst of it dissipated before I drove my live band up to Manchester last Thursday, stopping off for a fascinating trip to Manchester Museum before soundcheck. Massive thanks to my friend Jane Bradley for the tip! The main draw for me were the live things – beautiful frogs, lizards, geckos and chameleons in the vivarium (and what a great word! Vivarium…I love saying it out loud). I had a proper moment with this chap as well, there’s something so humbling about looking deep into the eyes of another species:

TIC #12 - first notes on my most ambitious project to date 1

Outside the vivarium there was case after case of dead things – skeletons, taxidermy, butterfly collections etc – all collected in the name of research and science supposedly (or certainly excused by it). My favourite display showed little boxes of volcanic ash collected from around the world:

TIC #12 - first notes on my most ambitious project to date 2

All this is of particular interest to me at the moment as I embark upon my most ambitious project to date – an excavation of my own past via 25 years of diaries and 15 years of recorded musical snippets to inspire an album, a book, a documentary film and a storytelling stage show. I’d intended on getting properly stuck in at the start of January but the delay created by my medical need to lie around and watch episodes of Gossip Girl has been very valuable, giving me more time to think around the ideas and strengthen them. I came up with the title of the project at the end of last year and it fits so perfectly…but it’s fun to have a secret so I’ll keep that one under my hat for a while longer.

I’m looking forward to staying in touch with you lovely lot this year in various ways – there’s talk of a Patreon for people who want to be super involved as this new project unfolds, and some of you kindly signed up for a quarterly analogue magical mystery music subscription via my recent Pledge campaign. Let me know in the comments if you want in on either of those things, there are a few spaces left for the analogue version which will go up for sale on Bandcamp once the first release is with Pledgers.

How’s your January going so far?

Laura xoxo



TIC #12 - first notes on my most ambitious project to date

64 thoughts on “TIC #14 – first notes on my most ambitious project to date

  1. Kymmie says:

    I’m sorry someone was so rude about your music. Happy new year lovely xx

    1. Laura Kidd says:

      Thanks Kymmie! I was just annoyed it was reported on by someone who wasn’t the show.

  2. mikey black says:

    Ignore haters they just make you hate too,
    Love your music and style keep it up!
    January is going well for me I’m working now and got my birthday on the 23rd hell yeah!

    1. Laura Kidd says:

      Oh great – happy birthday for yesterday! 😀

  3. Warren says:

    It’s hard to believe that some “reviewers” still earn their corn without having taken the time out to listen to the whole of the set before making any judgement. Common courtesy to listen first would be appreciated I think.

    Respectfully, I will always try to see the support act when at a gig, because it may well be that I like what they do and want to hear more. I am sure for example when you supported Levellers a few years back that those fans would appreciate what you do, and hopefully gained a few fans because of it.

    And yes, being a Mancunian, the museum is particularly ace (and Café Muse is also rather lovely too I should add) so definitely well worth you visiting there.

    Finally, in terms of funding for the future, Kristin Hersh’s “Cash Music” model (of which I subscribe to for Kristin) may be a good model to follow – not least as I’ve had perks like the new album download a week in advance as a Strange Angel subcriber. If not, Patreon would also work well and like you say, gives you regular input and income and a different way of funding too.

    See you in may with Juliana Hatfield 🙂

    1. Laura Kidd says:

      Yay for JH3! I was a CASH subscriber for a good while at the start, Kristin has always been so forward thinking. I don’t want to completely turn my back on the wider world so I’m looking for a way to balance it all. I’ll get there soon! Thanks for the support.

  4. Willie says:

    That’s an ambitious undertaking, and one you’re well equipped to excel at. The turns time from the last pledge, the wedding, and the release was relatively quick, so this announcement is impressive.

    As for the review… Sounds like a good time to point out the difference between a music lover and a music consumer, and a music critic and a music reviewer. Sounds like a critical consumer to my ear. They are not to be relied upon because they have a limited frame of reference and their appeal comes and goes with the trends. The world outside their headspace doesn’t exist, and that maybe why it feels so much better when they keep their opinions on such matters locked away in their minds, to fade the same way their cultural clout does.

    1. Laura Kidd says:

      Thanks Willie. BFI was completed in June 2017 so it’s high time for some new things to be made!

  5. stuart mcnicol says:

    Some people are unbelievable.
    Anyway onwards and upwards. Looking forward to your new project. Defiantly hope you do Patreon

    1. Laura Kidd says:

      Oh brill, thank you Stuart!!

  6. Hey! I’d certainly be up for the Patreon project. And I’d definitely be interested in hearing more about the quarterly subscription.

    1. Laura Kidd says:

      Oh ace – watch this space 😀

  7. Ian Faulkner says:

    I’d be happy to sign up to a SMW Patreon thingy…..

    1. Laura Kidd says:

      Thank you Ian! It’ll be a little while yet so keep an eye on the mailouts.

  8. Nick Barnes says:

    I love the Manchester Museum – used to go there a lot with the kids when we lived in Chorlton, now I’m only in the NW occasionally so I don’t go often but it’s still great. The vivarium is the best. If you poke about in the galleries near there, you can find drawers and drawers full of things like shells cut through in cross-section, huge pine cones, and so on. It’s not all out in well-lit interactive displays, and a lot of it isn’t labelled except with a number. Rather mysterious, like a proper old museum, and I think all museums should preserve some items like that, as part of the meta-heritage, that of museum-hood per se.
    Sorry to read about that unprofessional reviewer. Some people!
    Definitely up for a Patreon. I support a few artists that way already.

    1. Laura Kidd says:

      Thanks so much, Nick! I found all the taxidermy a bit much tbh but all the collections of bits and bobs were fascinating and so relevant to the pre-album research I’m starting……watch this space……

  9. David Hammonds says:

    The new project sounds fabulous and certainly look forward to reading about it as it progresses and seeing and hearing the completed project.

    As for the reviewer or non reviewer. Take a deep breath and mutter bollocks to them.
    You were there you heard the applause and felt the love in the room

    1. Laura Kidd says:

      Yep, I always go on audience reaction rather than second hand words! 😀

  10. Chris Neal says:

    Speaking as someone who initially saw you as a support at to my favourite Geordie headliner in July last year, knowing absolutely nothing of your work, I can honestly say I was blown away, bought everything I could that night and haven’t looked back !
    I’m happy to sign up for more !!

    1. Laura Kidd says:

      Thank you so much, Chris!!

  11. David Whyman says:

    Well me and the Mrs thought you were top in Manchester and thanks again for helping out. Not heard from CC company yet but have been in touch with Gregg, thank you for that. New project sounds ace and up for Patreon.
    If you don’t see a band don’t review by proxy, at it’sbest lazy, at worst unprofessional.
    Up the good work!

    1. Laura Kidd says:

      It was lovely to see you both, Dave, thanks for coming out!

  12. Carl Barton says:

    You keep doing what you’re doing, you’re ace!

    1. Laura Kidd says:

      Cheers Carl – same to you!

  13. Paul Prosser says:

    It’s strange that somebody would say they were glad they missed the support act, then criticize the act. Surely everybody would see through this rubbish reporting.
    The patreon idea is interesting I remember a few years ago subscribing to Ginger Wildheart, and it was great and he put out a lot of content out monthly. I look forward to what you propose in the future.

    1. Laura Kidd says:

      Thanks Paul, your support means so much to me. I’m excited about this year!

  14. Antony Hitchcock says:

    By the “reviewer” stating that they were late for your set, renders their review null and void.
    It’s a bit like going to a restaurant and ordering dessert and then stating that the starter and mains were nothing to write home about… anyway, i look forward to seeing more of your gigs and the next musical journey you take us all on.. thank you….

    1. Laura Kidd says:

      Too right Antony…and now I want a dessert 😀

  15. James Turner says:

    I would be interested in supporting your next project as well. As an amateur reviewer I try to remember a phrase my Mum used to say ‘If you have nothing nice to say, say nothing’. A review like that says far more about the reviewer than it does you. Good luck with the new project. Sounds exciting.

    1. Laura Kidd says:

      I’ve always followed that wisdom – knowledgeable critical writing is a fine art that isn’t often displayed these days, and I always prefer to read about someones’ enthusiasm for something than their hatred.

  16. Debra Allen says:

    Wow, that’s really rude, not to mention lazy reporting. I expect most people who read that thought the same, so he’s shot himself in the foot there.
    We first came across you supporting Ginger Wildheart at The Globe, and think your music is inspired and unusual. Fabulous. Keep at it ❤️

    1. Laura Kidd says:

      Oh thank you Debra!! 😀

  17. Happy New Year – Ignore the haters
    I would happily join a Patreon if and when set up.
    Lots of love <3

    1. Laura Kidd says:

      Thanks so much Dietmar! Love to you all xo

  18. Mathew Morgan says:

    I’d like to sign up to the analogue quarterly subscription pretty please.

    1. Laura Kidd says:

      Thanks Mathew! I’ll be sending out some info in a few weeks – the Pledgers will get theirs first and then I’ll put the others on Bandcamp. I can’t wait to share more things wooooop

  19. Alison Jenkins-Wood says:

    How bloody rude, you can’t review what you’ve not seen or heard!! Ignore the idiots. Hope you’re feeling much better now xx

    1. Laura Kidd says:

      I was getting there but the last two days have been bad again. Bored of this! Hope you and yours are healthy and happy.

  20. Angus Brown says:

    Some people are just stupid rude and ignorant. Rise above it – Betty Mayonnaise will be reviewing some more of your stuff very soon, cheers from Glasgow!

    1. Laura Kidd says:

      Thank you Angus, much appreciated!

  21. Alex says:

    So sorry about that rude reviewer. That really sucks. Good reviews are important to have when you are a musician and depend upon a good a fan base. I’d complain to whichever publication he writes for, if I were you. That is extremely unprofessional. looking forward to your new projects this year. January is always a shitty month (I can’t believe it’s only halfway through), lets hope it gets better for us all.

    1. Laura Kidd says:

      The promoter actually wrote in and complained about their lack of professionalism. Thanks for being here and having my back 🙂

  22. John Doherty says:

    I love following you and would be honored to follow you on Patreon

    1. Laura Kidd says:

      Thanks so much, John!

  23. Pauline Deakin says:

    I see a new t shirt… She Makes War… shockingly bad ( if you don’t bother to turn up on time!) I’ve always found you shockingly good! x

    1. Laura Kidd says:

      Thanks Pauline! That is a brilliant idea for a t-shirt ha!

  24. panegirico says:

    Hi Lau,

    Happy new year 🙂

    I sincerely hope you can put Porto on your road map this year 🙂

    Maybe we can do some magic happen 🙂

    1. Laura Kidd says:

      I hope so too – it’s too cold in Bristol at the moment!

  25. Rae says:

    Sorry to hear about the inconsiderate reviewer.

    I’d be really interested in supporting you via Patreon. I already support a few artists through that platform and I love the way it works. In fact, it was through one of those artists that I came to discover your music x

    1. Laura Kidd says:

      Oh that’s so interesting to hear! I will be setting something up in a little while, just pondering the best way forward at the moment. Thanks for the support.

  26. Nicola Hambridge says:

    Hey lovely Lau,

    I’m definitely up for a patreon or similar.

    And for supporting the live aspects of the new project…. Happy to advise/help with suitable venues here in Leeds



    1. Laura Kidd says:

      Fantastic, thank you!!

  27. Tim M says:

    Reading about that reviewer made my blood boil. It’s deeply unprofessional, and that kind of lazy writing will come back to haunt them.

    In other news, I played my blood-red vinyl copy of Brace for Impact yesterday to help me unwind after a stressful day and it was bloody brilliant!

    1. Laura Kidd says:

      Yay the blood red vinyl! I think that’s my favourite…

  28. Steve says:

    Sorry about the bad review; as others have said, it speaks more about the reviewer. Hopefully, you’ve been able to rise above it. Sticks and stones etc. but words can still smart a bit.

    Looking forward to what you’ve got coming up this year.

  29. Michael says:

    I’m struck by how many male names in the comments, I know you’ve posted about this before, but it still surprises me. I’d think you’d be of the role-model ilk for female- identifying fans! Hard worker, consistent output, self-sustaining, not to mention your boss tunes… All impressive traits regardless!

    I’d happily give you money on the regular, however you decide to do it.

    1. Laura Kidd says:

      Yeah it baffles me too Michael, but I’m grateful for the people who do show up to comment 🙂

  30. tony says:

    i hate lazy journalism. do your job or go do summit else!

    if you bother to experience the art then you have a right to publish a personal or professional opinion
    otherwise this is not going to help artists promote their work

    i’ve never read one of his reviews but my mate thinks hes a knob – probably!

  31. Andre Hill says:

    Thankfully I rarely read reviews and whoever it was who ‘reviewed’ you that night is a perfect example of why I don’t bother!

    As for future funding possibilities then a Patreon style model is something I would support since it offers a regular income for you. Having said that I like the pledging style as it has the opportunity to get unique or limited items like your diary. Mind you it also tempts me to get a bit carried away lol.

    I wasn’t aware Pledgemusic were in trouble. I hope my other pledges on there are getting to the artists. I’ve seen others use Kickstarter but it’s not really the same as Pledgemusic. In fact Kickstarter confuses me sometimes. I prefer Indiegogo tbh.

    Can’t wait to see what’s next and I hope I see you live again soon


    1. Laura Kidd says:

      Thanks so much for your very generous support, Andre!

  32. Darren says:

    It can’t be pleasant reading unkind words about yourself, but as plenty of others have said, every reader of that review will treat it with the contempt it deserves. Reviews are subjective at the best of times, but a dismissive judgement of an act they didn’t see based on a one line summary from some random person who didn’t enjoy it seems wilfully negative, like they were determined to be critical, but couldn’t be bothered to turn up and actually find anything to criticise. Perhaps because if they’d turned up they might have enjoyed it and that just wouldn’t do! I suspect the person who didn’t like your act, and their quote, are both fictional. After all, who wouldn’t be won over by one of your shows?

    1. Laura Kidd says:

      Well, I’m open to the idea that not everyone will get it or like it, but it frustrated me mightily at the British Sea Power support slot last year that such a noisy proportion of the audience weren’t even up for checking out half a song to see if they liked it. GRRRR.

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