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Underline The Sky

Over the past four years there’s been a noticeable gap in the Ipswich music scene. If you looked closely you’d spot that the said gap had the shape of an energetic pop/punk band, and if you pressed your ear to the vacuum you would be greeted by the sound of excited youngsters cheering wildly.

But that gap is no more. It’s been sealed by the return of Underline the Sky, who are back to reclaim their crown as the undisputed local heroes of guitar pop.

For a short history lesson, Underline the Sky were very much the prominent band of the local scene a few years ago – packing out venues across the town, sharing the bill numerous times with Ed Sheeran and finding fame via a TV talent show. But then they went away.

They’ve returned with two new tracks, This Kid Won’t Drown and Rooftops, and live shows at the John Peel Centre and the Smokehouse in Ipswich. The latter, their first headline gig in their hometown for four years, was a sell out and, by all accounts, a proper celebration.

We’ve been promised more new material and hopefully a session at the radio station in the near future. It’s great to have them back.

Elsewhere, I thought it might never happen, but it looks like there’s a chance the long-awaited second Dingus Khan album could see the light of day either later this year or early next year. I was lucky enough to have a listen to a version of the tracks and was pleased to hear it’s as good as you’d hoped it would be. They remain one of the most exciting bands in the country, so hopefully a new album will give them more opportunity to build on what is a rabid local fanbase.

Last month Graeme mentioned that BBC Music Introducing was celebrating its 10th anniversary, and I’m pleased to be able to share details of how we’ll be celebrating.

We’re going to be presenting a week of live shows, from 7-8pm on the 2nd to 6th October, and having a bunch of artists joining us. On the Tuesday we’ll be at the Smokehouse with Impilo and NotFamous – come be part of the radio broadcast and stick around for full sets from both acts. On Wednesday we have the wonderful Shining Path playing live for us, Thursday we welcome back Izzy’s Daughter to the live room, and then on Friday we’ll be at the Hunter Club in Bury St Edmunds – where Cathedrals & Cars and Gaffa Tape Sandy will be our guests. As with the Smokehouse, we’ll stick around for a full gig afterwards.

We’re really proud to be part of the wider BBC Introducing family and this is going to be a great chance to look back at acts we’ve championed over the past decade, while also highlighting the talent to look out for in the future.

Please do come say hello and raise a glass with us.