Meet the A Shot at Discovery finalists: London

Meet the London finalists for The Pogues Irish Whiskey Presents: A Shot at Discovery ahead of the regional heats.

The Pogues Irish Whiskey have teamed up with Academy Music Group, the people behind all of those iconic live music venues across the UK, to award one unsigned band with a huge prize. The national winner will enjoy £3000 towards new instruments, studio time with The Pogues as guest producers, live opportunities and management services, plus much more.

With the regional finals kicking off on Sunday 5 March, we’ll be bringing you an introduction to each of the bands scheduled to play.

See all of our A Shot at Discovery coverage here.

We’re kicking things off with the London finalists, who will take to the O2 Academy Islington on Thursday 16 March 2017. You can grab tickets here.

Finding Kate

Finding Kate - Get Over You

Describe your sound and how you formed.
My sound is emotional yet powerful with melancholy soaked lyrics, distortion guitars and hard-hitting drums in a mix of melodic rock/pop/alternative style.  I draw inspiration from my influences. Musicology magazine quoted: “If Evanescence, Avril Lavigne and Paramore had a musical love child, Finding Kate would be the product.”

We formed when I was looking for talented musicians in London to play my songs. I’ve had quite a few line-up changes over the past 3 years but right now I am really happy with my band. We formed after finding each other on Facebook groups and now we’ve been playing around the UK at different venues.

Why should fans come and watch your band?
We have a unique style that most bands in the UK do not have. There’s a blend of emo/rock stadium choruses, dark riffs and lyrics about themes we can all relate to. If you’re heartbroken and feeling vengeful then our set list is for you.

Dead Man’s Whiskey

Dead Man's Whiskey - War Machine [EP Version-Video]

Describe your sound and how you formed.
In terms of our sound I would say we are a modern hard rock band with classes undertones, with a wide array of influences such as Alter Bridge, Black Stone Cherry, Guns ‘N’ Roses to mention but a few.

Dead Man’s Whiskey originally formed in January 2016, when Elliott met Bill and James on joinmyband, they were in a band called Whiskey Chaser and were looking to replace old members. We clicked straight away, mainly driven by one another’s determination to make it in the music industry (and Elliott and Bills passion for league of legends). We were originally going to continue with this name but decided a clean start was best.

After a few weeks of searching Elliott was messaged by Nico out of the blue who had seen an advert Elliott had posted. Nico didn’t have many examples of his work, so we were a bit dubious, but we invited him to have a jam and boy could he sing, we asked him to join straight after.

It took us a little while to find a drummer, we were actually introduced to Charlie by Erim Ahmet, Elliott’s school friend who had played on the same bill as him recently. So Elliott messaged him out of the blue and sent him a few demos, and Charlie sent us an Alter Bridge cover he had recently recorded (later we find out he’s their number one fan). After a brief practice we decided he was the missing piece, and the rest is history.

Bare Hunter

Describe your sound and how you formed.
We formed back in 2014, Roger (guitar) and I (Robbie, vocals) had been playing together for a while and were looking for a band. We put an ad online and Jack (drums) was the only person to reply. We looked for a bass player but soon realised that Roger has ten fingers on each and and with the help of a Boss octave pedal we could create a really full rock sound with just the 3 of us.

We threw in some harmonica and thrashed out some heavy grooves, using some sort of voodoo it all came together. We now have 2 EPs under our belt which have been featured on BBC radio and national TV and have toured the country in a transit van taking our sound with us. The live show’s pretty energetic, one stage manager put it somewhere between The Doors, Nirvana and Nick Cave’s Grinderman. I like that.

Why should fans come and watch your band?
If you wanna write home about something truly different you should come and see us play. BBC 6 music labelled us “an awesome noise”, Radio X’s John Kennedy as “creating a storm” and Radio 2’s Bob Harris as “definitely ones to look out for”, and they only listened to the record!


Describe your sound and how you formed.
Fuzzwalker radiates an uncompromising blend of brazen and ethereal indie rock; driven by brash riffs and distinct hooks, our sound fuses steadfast rhythm and catchy melody with an all-out energetic flair. Frontman Matt – stimulated by the likes of Oasis & Hard-Fi – delivers clear-cut, biting vocal and guitar lines in time to the unfaltering Led Zeppelin/ Foo Fighters-inspired rhythms of Donna and Billy, while Carlos projects shining lead guitar – coloured with inspiration from Pink Floyd to the Arctic Monkeys.

We formed when Donna and Billy (originally the bass and drums combo of Albany Down) began looking for a new musical direction, and through a series of unlikely events met Matt – an indie frontman and songwriter fresh from university without a band and without a clue. The three had arranged to record debut EP Continental Breakfast as a three-piece until Carlos, having answered an online ad, entered the fray one week before the recording session, which still occurred and became the hearty, breakfasty base that we launched ourselves from. We all gelled astoundingly well and quickly became great friends – we think our music and stage presence reflects that too.

Why should fans come and watch your band?
Fans (and those of a fuzzy disposition) – Fuzzwalker provide a top-class set of tunes, and breathe our full vigour and life into the room when we do. Something that reviewers consistently praise about our shows is the amount of energy we give off on stage – simply put, playing our music and putting on a great gig is everything we are, so we put everything we are into it. We absolutely love to see your faces in the crowd, and we’re incredibly excited to put on an immense show for you. If you’re into great indie/rock, you won’t want to miss Fuzzwalker.


TOFFEES - Down In Style

Describe your sound and how you formed.
Toffees have been together in for a couple of years now and are set around the song ideas and lead vocals of Piers Nolan. Our sound has evolved through many live performances and is predominantly rooted in alternative commercial rock with a strong R&B feel, there are definite echoes of stadium type bands such as Oasis – huge anthemic songs mixed with raw Royal Blood style guitar riffs and soaring / driving vocals.

Why should fans come and watch your band?
Toffees are a high energy young band, with an attitude and enthusiasm that reaches out to engage the audience and performances that are capable of demonstrating uncompromising power and real soul in virtually every song!


Describe your sound and how you formed.
It’s Cackle by name and Cackle by nature for this fun-loving-four-piece from East London. Formed over a heated football debate in the kitchen of a houseparty, Nick, Harley, Craig and Rich have been smashing angular guitar riffs and catchy hooks together since 2015.

Feeding off a steady diet of Queens of the Stone Age, Led Zeppelin, The Black Keys and more, Cackle want music fans to stomp their feet, raise their hands and lose themselves in their big indie sound.

Why should fans come and watch your band?
We’ve got the bass guitar thumping, the cowbell clattering, the guitars howling and vocals slicing through the haze from the smoke machines. Cackle live, it’s a show not to be missed!

Find out more about the Pogues Irish Whiskey: A Shot At Discovery competition over on the Academy Music Group website.

Grab tickets to all of the A Shot At Discovery regional finals through our friends over at TicketWeb.