There are two bands on at tonight’s gig at the Night and Day, RYNA and Howling Bells. Both are female fronted four piece bands, but with different musical styles.

RYNA are from Manchester and have previously sold out Night and Day in their own right for their first gig. This may be because guitarist, Anthony Graham, was in Marion, and people are expecting something similar, or it may not. As it happens they are rather good. Singer Caroline Sterling gives a a good performance throwing herself into singing and dancing, and their indie pop style is enjoyable.

Howling Bells are Australian,. They describe themselves as indie,but their sound has links to the darker side of By the time they come on it’s very hot in the venue, and singer songwriter Juanita Stein has chosen to wear lycra leggings under her dress, something she readily admits is a mistake!

Stein’s lyrics concentrate on life, love and relationships with a brooding slightly malevolent quality to them. As she says, with a sense of irony, “What else is there to sing about when you’re a girl?” She chats between songs and tells off bassist, Brendan Picchio, for getting annoyed when his monitor isn’t working. We even get an impromptu version of Dolly Parton’s 'False Eyelashes', following a strange experience in York the night before with Stein not being allowed to take the stage at a free for all, get up and sing event.

Musically they use diverse sounds and effects - slide guitar :a microphone and amp set up which generates a lo-fi sound to some of the singing, and a synthesiser which help to build their sound without dominating.

This was definitely one of the best gigs I’ve been to this year, so much so it ended up with a copy of the album being bought.

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Commenting On: Night and Day, Manchester, 14/8/2006 - Howling Bells and RSNY

ie London, England

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