Independent Venue Week: Monday 23 January to Sunday 29 January 2017

Hull is in my heart, as mushy as that sounds. It’s definitely at the centre of pretty much everything that I do in life. In my job as the editor of Soundsphere magazine, I write, and promote Hull bands and venues. Whenever I come back to the area (my family live around Beverley), I feel awesome, and nowhere in the world makes me feel like Hull does. There’s a work ethic that’s unique to its artists and venues, and that’s something to be very proud of.

I went to my first ever gig at The Adelphi years ago (and I recently got to go back there and play with my own band, Seep Away). I promote shows at O’Riley’s, and I’ve worked with the likes of Scroobius Pip inside The Welly for Soundsphere. With all that in mind, here’s my rundown of why these venues and a few others are so important, as we enter Independent Venue Week 2017.


I’ve had so many good times here, covering bands as diverse as Shiny Toy Guns and Pulled Apart By Horses. It’s the kind of venue that’s become a must for bigger touring acts. The great thing about The Welly how its nights cater for all music fans; I’ve been to some ace rock club events (Wolfpack!), and great indie nights too (shoutouts to the epic Jelly crowd)!


I love the layout of the place; it’s probably the coolest-looking venue in Hull! Soundsphere interviewed Twin Atlantic there (before they became a rock powerhouse), and it still stands out as one of my favourites. The staff are real music lovers who you can chat to about anything, which is always nice when you’re hanging about between bands. Located on the wonderful Humber Street, I don’t think I’ve felt more “at home” in a venue. They serve tea there as well! Brews and bands are the perfect combo.


From The Holy Orders to System Paralysis and Rivers Johansson, The Adelphi has given opportunity to artists of any age to be seen at a truly iconic venue. Also, Jim, the soundman there is a proper legend. The whole team is just fantastic, everyone there is always creating something or making something cool happen, and that Paul Jackson seems like a lovely bloke too. The Adelphi is a true hotbed for all things creative, and innovative in the city.


I’ve promoted a few shows here, putting on Hull’s best talent including Chambers and Cannibal Animal, and it’s got so much potential! The guys behind O’Riley’s (Music HQ) are putting loads of effort into making it a great space for many different types of music! I predict that it will become a big part of the touring circuit for rock and metal bands this year, and that’s a good thing, because Hull’s alternative scene is stronger than ever.


The Sesh, held at The Polar Bear on Spring Bank is a magical place for new music. I’ve discovered so many bands – from Hull’s Vulgarians, to Manchester’s False Advertising and Texas’ Purple. I’d definitely say it’s the best venue in terms of pure crowd participation and general “good vibes”. I remember getting proper sweaty in there one time for an Endoflevelbaddie set, and it was glorious. Long live The Sesh, mate.

Have you guys got any favourite venues, or memories? Have I missed anythin’? Don’t forget to check out Soundsphere magazine for more info on emerging Hull music!

Dom Smith, editor,