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Top 10 Most Popular Manchester Bands of 2012 at Designer Magazine

Looking back at 2012 it's been a whirl wind of great gigs, great music marketing blogs from ourselves and great guest blogs from our fantastic artists

At the end of the day we wouldn't we be putting on great gigs and writing blogs if it wasn't down for the one passion that keeps us all going... the passion of great music

Looking at the top 10 below I feel it reflects the true breadth of Designer Magazine from hardcore punk to dubstep influenced metal via torch songs and pure pop fun

Below I give my personal thoughts on what you our readers have been reading the most in 2012

10. Dead Retinas

Dead Retinas - the one band in Manchester that truly got behind our #supportthescene ethos this year

Support The Scene was important for many reasons and Dead Retinas with their DIY punk attitude saw this straight away. Us as independent promoters and DIY / Unsigned bands need to actively support thosearound us or there is no scene.

The one memory that stands our for me this year amongst some great gigs, the first of which I seem to remember was supporting Four Short Of A Miracle at the start of 2012, was this Summer at Dry Bar. Literally around an hour before stage time it because apparent their lead singer was not able to play that nights gig. Pulling out when fans were in the venue and the bands were all eagerly awaiting their set wasn't an option ... so CJ their bass player stepped in on vocal duties somehow remembering most of their lyrics and they still pulled off a great set

The other thing that stands out for Dead Retinas is CJ going on about him being a Top 10 bear heartthrob ;) .... you can add this to the Top 10 band now!!!

9. SavingSyenna

Apart from Kids With Machetes, SavingSyenna are probably the band that's played Designer Magazine's Metal On Metal gigs most in 2012

They desribed themselves as "an aggressive yet melody driven metalcore 5 piece outfit hailing from a small town outside of Manchester you won't have even heard of". We happened to have heard of Stalyvegas, but haven't had the pleasure of visiting yet

The music speaks for itself to watch their youtube vid of their EP here

8. Dread Your Last Day

Melodic hardcore with influences including Your Demise, Heights, Last Witness, Architects, The Ghost Inside amongst others

There doesn't seem to be a month that goes by without another lineup change for DYLD, but the name remains the same and they keep on keeping on

Constantly on Social Networks they prove that hardwork does pay off and they have a growing fanbase waiting for gigs in 2013 once the new line up is complete

Watch their vid here

7. Kids With Machetes

A metal meets dubstep band who's lead singer looks like X Factor winner James Arthur and loves Justin Bieber.... you don't often get that band bio coming through

Kids With Machetes are awesome though and put on such a good show they keep getting invited back time and time again to our Metal On Metal nights.

Really with a sound as big as this they deserve to be playing massive stages at festivals this summer and 2013 is reported to be the year they gig outside of Manchester a lot more on a UK Tour

6. Sam Smith & Company

We had Sam Smith on first in late 2011 as a solo artist and over time he's developed the "& company" part of his band to where we are today.

What comes across with each performance and draws people back time and time again (as local band The Madding Crowd will testify) is the 110% passion in each performance

If that could be bottled and pushed across on Social networks he really would get a larger following as the songs take in the best parts of singer songwriters like Pete Yorn

5. The Big Sleep aka 1975

Drive Like I Do to the Big Sleep and now the 1975 - I think we have missed a name out there inbetween but essentially they're the same band with the same big songs

Chocolate and Sex are the bands to big breakthrough songs and word is filtering through to the mainstream now following a few choice support slots in the latter half of 2012

A few years ago we actually had Drive Like I Do on in the small room of Moho - the atmosphere was insane which explains why a lot of you still search for all their previous band names

4. The Heartbreaks

One of Designer Magazine's most recent success stories to join the likes of Kids With Glass Houses, Bombay Bicycle Club and Dear Eskiimo (The Ting Tings)

We hosted The Heartbreaks debut gig supporting Morrissey faves Doll & The Kicks at Satans Hollow and since then they've gone on to release a fantastic debut album and a flurry of great indie singles. The interview we did here talks about their night with Bono's wife amongst other things - from Satans Hollow to Bono's Wife - WOW!!!

Those beady eyes in Manchester may recognise them under the name Seaside Riot who we also had them on back in the day at venues such as Night & Day

The Heartbreaks highlight for us this year - getting a thankyou in sleevenotes of their debut album!!!

3. Rae Morris

Which gigs have you seen with a handful of people at before their name suddenly arrives on everybody's lips

We saw Rae Morris ages ago at a tiny pub gig on a quiet Monday night in January. The songs were some of the best songs we've heard since the days of Carole King and it was obvious Rae was going to be picked up for great things. Since then Rae Morris has been picked up by Karima Francis' management team and signed to Atlantic Records

Expect big things in 2013

2. Eden

A personal fave band of the year so good to see our readers thought the same but the amount of times they've been reading this interview

So many things are right about Eden it's untrue

Their name - The name came from the idea of a "paradise" within a bleak place which resembles our feelings towards the music industry at the moment.

The influences - Nirvana, Oasis, Sex Pistols, The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, The Germs, Foo Fighters, White Stripes, The Kinks, Led Zeppelin, T-Rex, The Clash and The Libertines.

The gigs - some of the best we've had on this year

Seriously check them out now

1. Reconnected
Designer Magazine and Reconnected go back a long way ... from the days when they were fresh from Britains Got Talent as a 5 piece called Connected. Back then we DJ'ed a charity event with them in South Manchester and shortly after the 5 went their separate ways leaving 3 of them to form Reconnected

End of 2011 we saw a great single launch event at Sound Control and then we met again this year for an Olympic Torch Event in Stockport. In that time inbetween they'd signed to none other than Dragon Duncan Banatynes record label.

For those of you old enough to remember when pop bands had dance routines rather than jumping up and down on the spot or sitting on stools you'll put your indie / rock allegiances to the side and realise this is how you form a pop band.

If you want an example of commitment to fans then look at the fact they used to have days where fans could visit them at their house and hang out

What does 2013 hold for them? If tweets are to read inbetween it could mean a full UK Tour to play to their fans outside the north west



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All Interviews by Alex McCann unless otherwise stated
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