Pop Punk London Showcase Build Up // Maggie Cassidy // Penelope Tree // Loud Mute Rage // The Young & Restless

Pop punk is a genre adored by millions across the globe. While iconic bands like Green Day, Sum 41, Blink 182, and Panic At The Disco! blast through fans’ headphones, lesser-known pop punk bands continue to emerge on a daily basis. Independent artist promotion company, Trauma PR, noticed the need for unsigned band exposure and has organised pop punk showcases in London. In our part one of two showcase preview articles, here is what the bands performing at the Pop Punk London Showcase on June 24th at The Slaughtered Lamb had to say:


Maggie Cassidy

Credit: Ant Adams

Maggie Cassidy is a five-piece dirty pop band out of Guildford in Surrey. Formed in 2017, and named after an early Jack Kerouac novel, they’re ready to take their playful brand of intelligent pop music to a mainstream audience. These boys bring with them a relentless, energetic live show of strong material best described as sad songs you can dance to. Their debut single, ‘Guide Me’, produced by Pete Miles (We Are The Ocean, Dry The River) at MiddleFarm Studios, is a guitar pop song with a powerful message.

How would you describe your band to a person who is new to pop punk?

Maggie Cassidy: “We’d probably best describe our sound as pop music with an edge. We marry a dirty rock sound (filthy basslines, heavy drums, guitars) with pop sensibilities. It’s important to us that our sound makes people want to dance and sing along. I think there’s something for everyone in what we do.”

What, do you think, is the most enjoyable aspect of performing live?

Maggie Cassidy: “The most enjoyable aspect of playing live is the work you have to put in to get a crowd on your side. As we’re a relatively new band, we often go into shows as an unknown quantity; it’s rewarding to see people sing along to a chorus the second time it comes round. We love meeting people/fans before and after shows, it’s amazing to meet passionate music fans and hear their stories.”

Why do you believe live performance showcases, such as the Trauma PR Pop Punk Showcase, is important in today’s musical community?

Maggie Cassidy: “Firstly, we’re playing alongside some phenomenal up-and-coming pop punk acts; it’s a stellar lineup. It’s amazing that fans can enjoy all that new music for £7, and, hopefully, leave having found their new favourite band. Showcases are a great opportunity for bands and fans, everybody wins.”

Who would you say is your musical inspiration?

Maggie Cassidy: “Across the band, we have diverse influences, but our music is probably most inspired by Neck Deep, State Champs, 5 Seconds of Summer and a band called, The Maine. The Maine is probably the most important influence because of their ethos and work ethic as a band; their whole approach to making music is really inspirational.”

What does the rest of 2018 hold for you?

Maggie Cassidy: “We’ve got a new single out in the summertime, probably around August, which we’re super-excited about. We’ll be doing a big campaign in support of that, with a release show in London. We can’t wait for everyone to hear it. Otherwise, we’re just keen to play as many shows as possible, and share what we do with as many new people as we can!”


Penelope Tree

Credit: JPC Photography

Drawing inspiration from common situations, Penelope Tree aims to capture the mature side of pop punk that is both meaningful and relatable. Hailing from Buckinghamshire, the quartet formed in the latter stages of 2015, and since then have worked tirelessly to create songs that encapture what it really means to be young, but getting older.

How would you describe your band to a person who is new to pop punk?

Penelope Tree: “Penelope Tree’s music is all about telling relatable stories with catchy choruses and captivating lyrics. Often described as pop punk with feels, our sound has a lot of changing dynamics and tight musicianship. It’s all crafted with the goal in mind of letting people know: whatever they’re going through, they’re not alone.”

What, do you think, is the most enjoyable aspect of performing live?

Penelope Tree: “No two nights are the same. The energy in the room, the audience, and our performance are always slightly different. Going out on stage, never knowing exactly how things are going to go and who might be sharing the experience with you, is terrifyingly exciting. We’ve had people shout words back to us in the middle of rural South Wales, and we’ve made people cry while playing in Brighton; it’s thrilling to share these moments with such wonderful people.”

Why do you believe live performance showcases, such as the Trauma PR Pop Punk Showcase, is important in today’s musical community?

Penelope Tree: “With the digital era making it so music is always readily available at the click of a button, it’s becoming increasingly difficult for unsigned acts to fight for listener’s precious time, and wrestle a small chunk of it away from established acts. Performance showcases, such as this, give rising bands a platform to make themselves heard and really show a wider audience what makes them worth your time.”

Who would you say is your musical inspiration?

Penelope Tree: “Our influences are constantly changing, our next record even pays homage to performance poets like Carrie Rudzinski and Neil Hilborn. Our roots, however, lie firmly in early 2000’s emo, like Jimmy Eat World and Taking Back Sunday merging with the likes of The Wonder Years and Into It. Over It.

What does the rest of 2018 hold for you?

Penelope Tree: “We’ve got a tour coming up with our friends in Air Drawn Dagger at the end of July, and a lot of gigs already in the works for the second half of the year. We’ve also got a new record coming out towards the end of the year which we’ve been working on for a while. We can’t wait to let everyone hear it!”


Loud Mute Rage

Credit: Boo Georgieva

Loud Mute Rage is a rock ‘n’ roll band formed in London, England, in late 2016. Their influences range from punk/hard rock, glam and grunge, to genres like funk or classical music. This, in addition to deep, meaningful lyrics with the ability to strike a nice balance between complexity and catchiness, allows the group to create their own unique style. Over the course of a year, they’ve played and even headlined many local shows. The group currently released their debut music video and single.

How would you describe your band to a person who is new to pop punk?

Loud Mute Rage: “Whatever you’ve heard of pop punk before, don’t expect us to be the same. Whatever you’ve heard of music before… ditto.”

What, do you think, is the most enjoyable aspect of performing live?

Loud Mute Rage: “Engaging with the audience and seeing them have a good time. Watching that happen multiple days a week when you’re really just doing what you love, that’s a dream, isn’t it? Also, the part where you can be completely wild and crazy on stage, and nobody thinks there’s something wrong with you, is quite worth it.”

Why do you believe live performance showcases, such as the Trauma PR Pop Punk Showcase, is important in today’s musical community?

Loud Mute Rage: “Anything that gives up-and-coming bands more exposure is a good thing, especially in this day and age where the general public doesn’t seem to pay much attention to newcomers in the genre.”

Who would you say is your musical inspiration?

Loud Mute Rage: “That would be a really long list! When we first started, it was a combination of some hard rock, pop punk and post-punk artists (e.g. Green Day, AFI, Mötley Crüe); but since stagnation and creativity don’t mix well, we try to keep evolving instead of getting stuck with the same thing.”

What does the rest of 2018 hold for you?

Loud Mute Rage: “We try really hard to bring at least 50% of our crazy plans and ideas to life, without going out of our minds. Can’t tell you much at this point, but some of our plans include more releases, as many shows as we could possibly play, and not breaking too many of our instruments and bones while on stage. Also, you know, having fun.”


The Young & Restless

Credit: Jazza Wallace

The Young & Restless are four-piece pop punk band from Northampton, England. The band members include Ali Morrison (guitar and vocals), Rob Hardy (guitar and vocals), Adam Hogg (drums) and Will Newell (bass).

How would you describe your band to a person who is new to pop punk?

The Young & Restless: “Emotional, raw, energetic, fast-paced pop punk. Songs about feelings, songs about the trials and tribulations of life, and more feelings…”

What, do you think, is the most enjoyable aspect of performing live?

The Young & Restless: “We buzz off the energy of a good crowd. We tend to move around quite a bit onstage, well, a hell of a lot! What makes it even more special is grabbing the attention of people who are seeing us for the first time. We like to make our audience feel involved and appreciated, whether it’s getting them going with a good ol’ heartfelt chant, or playing Blink 182’s ‘Dammit’. Everyone loves ‘Dammit’, those who say they don’t are boldfaced liars.”

Why do you believe live performance showcases, such as the Trauma PR Pop Punk Showcase, is important in today’s musical community?

The Young & Restless: “We think it gives up-and-coming bands the amazing opportunity to not only play in places they’ve never played before, but a chance to network with other bands and promoters. This also opens up the doors to more opportunities for shows, potential tours and friendships. Most importantly, it’s helping keep the local scene alive and blooming! We are incredibly honoured to have been given the chance to play, and are looking forward to meeting all the bands, promoters and people involved.”

Who would you say is your musical inspiration?

The Young & Restless: “There are so many. If we were to mention a few, to give people a better idea as to what we sound like, then Blink 182, New Found Glory, State Champs, The Story So Far, Yellowcard, The Wonder Years, Don Broco, Lower Than Atlantis and many more!”

What does the rest of 2018 hold for you?

The Young & Restless: “We are wanting to get back in the studio soon and write some more material. We just released our new single entitled ‘Family Values’. We also have some shows, and some little weekenders booked for this summer.”

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