26 August 2013

Bell X1 to do live session in London with Daytrotter

Bell X1

Bell X1 to do live session in London with Daytrotter

After another no.1 in Ireland for Bell X1, where on radio play they're 2nd only to U2, the band's UK release of their sixth album, "Chop Chop" (produced by longtime The National producer Peter Katis), was similarly successful - garnering 5/5 in The Independent On Sunday, 5/5 in The Express and 4's in both Mojo and Event, and more positivity from Q, Metro, NARC and others for the record.

Bell X1 will be in London for the afternoon of the 29th August to record a live session for Daytrotter

Their home no.1 has a strong story, too. They did it with an alternative approach to retail, bringing the record to small towns all across the country, moving away from the traditional model and even, yes, making tea for their fans.

With the restructuring of HMV and the difficult circumstances faced by most of the music retailers in Ireland and the UK Bell X1 wanted to be able to make picking up a record something personal for all involved. There are quite a few communities in Ireland that no longer have a record shop and they wanted those folks to be included - if they couldn't go to the record, the band would bring the record them. All this while also trying to help the really good retailers who still do their part and are still standing. The band went to the best venues, coffee shops and record shops in Ireland and asked if they would be up for holding a pop-up Bell X1 shop in support of the new album.

In the end they had a diverse confederation of folks... all united by their love of music: This included stately institutions like The National Concert Hall in Dublin to intimate and special places like Debarra's in Clonakilty, The Spirit Store in Dundalk, Dolans in Limerick and The Roisin Dubh in Galway. Places where music is literally in and on the very walls.

What's amazing is that each pop up shop sold more in the first week than the band would ever have sold in the old HMV on the High Street. The band feel that people genuinely want to have an "experience" buying records and talking about music. Notably, the band couldn't count those sales towards the chart but they still debuted at no.1! In reality, about treble the charted sales being unaccounted. 

In the end - at every Pop Up Shop, fans got to listen to the record, have a pint or a cuppa, talk to the guys, hear them do a few songs acoustic etc. I would say that they were massively successful.

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