Brighton Magazine

The Brighton Magazine

Selected Brighton Magazine Article

Thursday 28 January 2010

Tom McRae Spells Out His Alphabet of Hurricanes @ Concorde 2

British singer-songwriter Tom McRae has been quietly moving up the ranks of the most respected songwriters after releasing four critically acclaimed studio albums over the last nine years.
Tom McRae: Brooklyn To London Via Brighton

Now, after a year away from touring, during which Tom moved back to London from Brooklyn, he is about to release his fifth studio album.

The Alphabet of Hurricanes is an album in two parts, with a second volume to follow in late 2010.

It is McRae's most ambitious album to date, recorded over three years in studios, hotel rooms, and backstage both in the US and UK.

Having set up his own studio, Gunpoint, in East London, McRae has been taking charge of the production once again, with his haunting melodies and poetic lyrics given a new sonic palette in an eclectic selection of powerful songs.

Tom will tour the new album with a full band, and - as his fans can attest - for an artist working in a genre often considered by the music press to be "sensitive and self-indulgent" he can take the roof off a venue with his passionate performances, as well as forging a strong humorous bond with his audience.

His eponymous debut album in 2000 was nominated for a Mercury Prize, Q Magazine Award, and a Brit, and the subsequent two years of touring cemented his reputation as one the most entertaining and powerful artists touring today.

Just Like Blood, his second album was released to wide acclaim, especially in America, where every track was licensed for tv and film use, his style of music fitting perfectly the more darker output of LA"s film studios.

In 2004 McRae moved to LA, and while making his third album, All Maps Welcome, began playing regularly at The Hotel Café venue in Hollywood.

The connection McRae made with fellow musicians led to the Hotel Café Tour, a travelling revue show featuring dozens of artists, which annually tours the USA coast to coast, as well as occasional forays into Europe.

The tour is something of a phenomenon in the states, providing a forum for new talent that may otherwise be unable to reach a live audience on such a scale.

After signing to V2 in 2006, the following year McRae released King Of Cards, a more upbeat offering than previous albums.

The demise of the label during the promotion phase didn"t diminish Tom"s enthusiasm for the fight, and he toured the album twice that year, proving a huge hit at festivals across Europe, recruiting more fans everywhere he went,

The Alphabet of Hurricanes tour and album and look set to further add to the cult that is rapidly springing up around this talented and dedicated artist.

Tom McRae plays Concorde 2 on Saturday 6th March. See for more information.

by: Mike Cobley

Related links

Concorde 2 Tom McRae


As a music journalist David Sinclair had 'a growing realisation that after all the great records I'd heard and the thousands of shows I'd been lucky enough to see, that it was time to play some great music of my own.'

For young people still in education looking to achieve the right exam results, or those who have just entered the world of work hoping to land that dream role, gaining experience in their chosen field can be very difficult. 

Maverick Sabre's third album When I Wake Up is an acutely personal and poignant body of work from the songwriter and artist and includes guest appearances from Jorja Smith and Chronixx.
credit Andy Willsher

Musician and songwriter Andy Burrows and bestselling Hove-based author Matt Haig, whose friendship blossomed after they 'met' on Twitter, have spent the past year passing ideas back and forth to create a collection of songs loosely inspired by Haig's books.

The London born, Brighton raised and BBC Sound 2019 Nominated singer Grace Carter found through music the strength to speak out, to face down heartbreak and forge something transformative from the pain. 

At 65 years old, and with an incurable illness, award-winning comedy writer Paul Mayhew-Archer decided to go to the Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2018 to do something he'd never done before: perform a one-man comedy show.

Canadian alt-rockers Dilly Dally's latest long-playing release, Heaven, rose from the ashes after the four-piece almost decided to call it quits following the rigorous cycle around their much-loved debut, Sore. 
Photo credit: Sarah Millican

Comedian and writer Sarah Millican has just finished a year-long sell-out tour, including two dates at Brighton Dome, where she encouraged her audiences to make a donation to the Samaritans through bucket collections after every single show.
Pic by Grant

Winner of the first ever Women of the World Poetry Slam in 2008, Andrea Gibson remains one of the most captivating performers in the spoken word poetry scene today. 

Ian McKellen is to celebrate his 80th birthday next year by raising funds for theatres, with a new solo show which will play on 80 stages across the UK, including Theatre Royal Brighton.

Last weekend Brighton & Hove Green Party began collecting donations of clothes, food and toiletries for a range of local charitable organisations which support the city's most vulnerable residents

The Turner Prize-nominated visual artist David Shrigley has created a personalised artwork to help raise funds for the Brighton Dome's refurbishment project.

The much anticipated Christmas Queens, at Brighton Dome Concert Hall, began via a video montage of some of the most famous and popular queens from all ten seasons of RuPaul's Drag Race.

Archive search

Search our archives for what's on and gone for the best of this city's theatre music comedy news and much more...

Organising a conference or event in Brighton?
See our Brighton Conference section.
Brighton web design by ...ntd