Pennyblackmusic is pleased to announce that it is promoting its first London show in nearly 18 months at The Water Rats. It will be our first gig since our successful 20th anniversary show in September 2018, and features three outstanding alternative/indie rock acts – The Band of Holy Joy, Moon Under Water and Dream Maps.

Doors will open at 7.30 p.m. with the first act on at 8 p.m. Tickets can be bought at £8 in advance from or £10 on the door.


Forever changing, consistently unique yet, always somehow the same, our headline act The Band of Holy Joy began life in a squat in New Cross in North London in 1984 as gutter chansoniers using junk shop instruments to propagate a brute romantic madly literate form of dispossessed urban folk music.

Since then the band have scaled a few heights, fallen down in one or two gutters, broken up, glued themselves together, toured the world, released a fair few albums and fully explored other media by presenting audio visual song plays and site specific pieces. They have set up their own label and perpetrate a Friday night radio show of looped soundscapes on Resonance FM called Bad Punk and possess an alter ego that goes by the name of Scrap and Salvage Movement.

These days the junk shop instruments of old are long gone, and guitars, sixties organ and visuals are very much to the fore. But the band, which is fronted by the charismatic Johny Brown, continues to write about the same outsider concerns with the same measure of spirit and care, and they still put on a show.

The Band of Holy Joy’s latest album ‘Neon Primitives’, which came out on Tiny Global Productions in June, provides on tracks like ‘The Devil Has Got a Hold of the Land’ a blistering but damning reflection on our leaders and the present political crisis. It is, however, as much about finding hope for the future and looking beyond despair in these darkest of times.


The main support is Leicester/Basildon/Liverpool hybrid Moon Under Water. Their drummer and lyricist Adrian Janes was the drummer in the Outsiders, the late musical cult hero Adrian Borland’s precursor to The Sound. The Adrian Borland connection is a strong one as their singer Audrey Eade provided backing vocals to Borland’s first solo album, ‘Alexandria’, and Moon Under Water formed at a tribute night for what would have been his 60th birthday at the end of 2017.

Moon Under Water have been working on their own material which has a dark, brooding sound while Audrey’s vocals have a sublime beauty. They will be releasing an album out next year. We feel very privileged as the Water Rats gig will be their official London debut.


The final act on the bill is Dream Maps, the post rock solo project of London musician Dominic Simpson. Dream Maps' largely instrumental last album ‘In Stormy Nights ’took its inspiration from the enigmatic Russian radio station UVB-76, and Dominic will be playing highlights from it as well as for the first time live tracks from his forthcoming as-yet-untitled next album.

Pennyblackmusic Live at The Water Rats, 328 Grays Inn Rd, Kings Cross, London WC1X 8BZ.
Friday 17th January 2020
Doors 7.30 p.m.
First band on 8.00 p.m.
Tickets £8 in advance from or £10 on the door.

The top photograph was taken by Jo Joelson and the middle photograph by Alan Bell.

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