Back To Business For Economides

 (Image courtesy of Karen Preistley Photography)

It’s certainly been a tough time for Chester-based Cypriot super bantamweight, Paul Economides, 20-6(4).

Presently boasting a professional record of twenty wins from twenty-six outings, Economides had a rough spell which saw a fight postponed and issues surrounding meant a downtrodden star was close to quitting, before a chance meeting with now manager, Dave Coldwell.

Now, back in business, The Spartan, whose expected outing last month against fellow Welshman, Mark Evans, was cruelly snatched away due to paperwork irregularities in fight week, is ready to go this weekend in Manchester.

At the Bowlers Arena, the show that is promoted by former professional Kieran Farrell and headlined by two Area title contests, will see the Spartan continue his rise when opposing Bristol’s Ashley Lane, 8-8-2(1), over six rounds.

“I was told on the Thursday before the fight that my medicals weren’t in order and that really surprised and caught me off-guard as I was under the impression all was in order,” began Paul.

“There was no reminders and nobody told me it needed renewing so the only option was to postpone the fight (with Evans). Everything is now in order though and it’s all systems go for this weekend.”

Timing is everything for a boxer, however for their wives and partners not so, Katia, Paul’s wife, has just given birth to their second daughter, Sofia, five days late but there’s been no celebrations for the Spartan just yet, that will come after this weekend when opposing Lane.

“I had a few days after (the Evans postponement) but I’m feeling good, strong and definitely ready to go for this one.

“I’ve seen him (Lane) fight a few times, sparred him a few years back as well. He’s a really good fighter and his style suits me, he’s game and certainly comes to cause an upset, as he’s just done against an unbeaten lad a few weeks ago.

“I’m looking to impress and win though, that’s all I’m worried about and, although fighters don’t look ahead we all know who and what I want.”

Six years ago Economides lost, on points, for the then vacant Welsh super bantamweight strap to Cefn Fforest’s Robbie Turley, and the Cypriot fighter has been hankering for a rematch ever since.

“I want a rematch with Robbie Turley and a shot at the Commonwealth title but take nothing from Lane, he is a big threat and no mug having been in with some big names. Winning this though moves me another step closer to Turley and that strap.

“I’m excited for the weekend though and can’t wait to get back in the ring. I need to win this as there’s still pressure on me (following the Sean Davies reverse back in October for the WBC International) but I’ve had some good sparring again and I’m ready to go.”

Economides versus Lane is part of a stacked fight card at the Bowlers Arena on Saturday night which is headed by two Area title fights – Northern Area light heavyweight between Liam Conroy and Steve Cooper, and Central Area middleweight between Danny Sharp and Ben Davies.

Paul will be sporting the ‘White Ribbon’ in future outings as support for The White Ribbon Campaign which champions men against domestic violence.

Welcome To The State Of Mind

(Images with permission of Keith Fusco Photography)

Sponsored by EGH Radio Rocks, the home of unsigned rock music, 24/7 and the home of Anne’s Rock Show, Monday’s from 9pm.

Rockers Twister went above and beyond at the O2 Academy on Sunday night when releasing their ‘Combined State of Mind’ album collection.

The lads, who had three supersized screens on stage, fireworks, plenty of tickertape and strobe lighting in effect certainly played to their adoring fans, Team Twister turning out en-mass – even the four support acts played a massive part.

Sam Gibson put on as an exhilarating opening as you could want; OffPeak performed magnificently; capital rockers, Judas, were as powerful as they were passionate; as for A New Nowhere, as chief support, they justified that role when setting up Twister as only a band can do, in style.

That main event though!

A combination of nearly a year’s work as Stevie Stoker, ever the perfectionist frontman, Matt, Jake, Joe, and additional members Paul and Michael, putting together two EP’s into one super album with Designed and Refined State of Mind’s completing the collection.

It’s hard to say which of the twenty plus tracks from their current, and back catalogue of music, received the better reception as the band reeled off some ninety minutes of pure, Twister, rock gold.

Even the new tracks, a few even unheard in a live setting until the night itself, were met with vigour and dance as the bar was well and truly risen.

As for what’s next from the lads, you’ll have to wait and see but for Twister, on Sunday night, and that incredible support they possess, they did it – O2 Academy main stage, done, and in some style that’s for sure.

Twister Ready For Major Headline On Tyneside

Rockers Twister are to headline the O2 Academy main stage in Newcastle this Sunday evening as Stevie Stoker and the lads take the next step on the rocky road to rock stardom.

The band, formed by Stoker near fourteen years ago, has come on leaps-and-bounds in the past few years, playing some high profile supports and selling out places like The Cavern Club in Liverpool and the O2 Academy (Stage 2).

In fact it was their last headline at Academy two, late last year, which saw the lads afforded the opportunity of the big one as Stoker, alongside bandmates Matt Whitaker, Jake Grimes and Joe Major, deciding to use the opportunity to capitalise and make it ‘The State of Mind Collection,’ full album launch.

Last time out they released the first half of the album, ‘Designed State of Mind’ in a packed out Academy when ably supported by Craig Roddam, Catalyse and Singapore Safehouse. Fast forward some seven months or so and they’re prepared to release not only the second half of the EP, ‘Refined State of Mind,’ but the complete collection, ‘Combined State of Mind.’

“We were absolutely over the moon to be able to sell-out Academy Two,” began Stevie.

“The response to the atmosphere and music on the night was great and then, to get the call from the Academy the following day asking if we’d fancy headlining the main hall, words can’t describe that.

“We’re aware as to how big a step up this is and the challenge that it presents but it’s a dream stage to play on and we’ve only been there once and that was a few years ago now (as support to Alarm).

“This is us, it’s something really, really special and we’ll certainly throw everything at it.”


“Playing the O2 is just surreal anyway and was packed out from start to finish, staying like that until the last song,” added Jake.

“So, already being on cloud nine with that, we get this as well. It brings back great memories for me going to gigs there as kids and the Ubeat Awards (last December when the lads collected a couple) was the perfect warm-up.

“Knowing it was Academy One from the off, we hope to sell it out, and although it could be seen as a bit of a risk, it’s now or never really. It’s the first step in the next big thing for us.”

In addition to their usual back catalogue of tracks, and the album being blasted out, Twister will also play two new tracks, opening with ‘Welcome to the State of Mind’ as well as ‘Mystery’ – which says it all really!

Supported by Sam Gibson, Offpeak, Judas, and A New Nowhere, tickets will be available for entry only, £8, on the night with VIP doors at 545pm and normal entry at 630pm.

 

Twister Welcome OffPeak!

Sponsored by EGH Radio Rocks, the home of unsigned rock music, 24/7 and the home of Anne’s Rock Show, Monday’s from 9pm.

Twister, headline the main stage at the O2 Academy in Newcastle for the first time and alongside them will be some special friends with the third announcement being the addition of another Durham band, OffPeak.

Consisting of brothers Jamie and Robbie Pick (vocals & guitar respectively), Kier Hutchinson (bass), Kurtis Sumpton (rhythm guitar), and Jackson Raw (drums), the lads from Esh Winning releasing their EP, Told You So, their second, at the turn of the year with a sold out gig at Durham University’s SU.

“We started just over three years ago and weren’t even a band” began Jamie.

“It was more a few lads having fun until we realised we actually sounded good, then it just went from there.

“The first video, for Stay the Same, was released in early 2015 then we had an EP launch shortly after at the O2 Academy, which we sold out. After that we went touring a little and we’re just doing things off our own back and enjoying it, that’s why we do it.”

Robbie added: “We’ve had a base in Durham though since we started out and we religiously continue to use that.

“We’ve tried really hard to chase the dream but not to forget as to what we’re doing it for so just have to go for it and see what happens.

“The EP was recorded last year with Ben Jones at Wood Cottage Studios (Hartlepool), they’re amazing and would recommend to anyone.

“After that we’ll be taking stock and doing some more writing building towards launching something in November/December; we have the material to do so and we’ll look at keeping the gigs more northerly to increase our fan base.”

Now, with the support of Twister just around the corner for the Valley lads it’s certainly a case of onwards and upwards.

The EP launch was the perfect platform into 2017 and, whilst looking to do similar this time around as the momentum grows, in and out of the studio.

“The launch was really good and it got the year off to the perfect start,” continued Jamie.

“We have maintained the momentum we began with and the rest of the year will see us recording an EP in September and having a single launch night at Think Tank on Saturday 25 November.

“That will then be follows by releasing the EP in early 2018.

“First though we have Sunday at the Academy which we are absolutely buzzing about; to be given this opportunity by Twister we’d like to thank them, we really appreciate it.”

Tickets for the Academy show, priced at £7 entry (£8 on the door) and £11 VIP are available direct from OffPeak, or from www.officialtwister.co.uk.

You can follow OffPeak’s progress on social media via Facebook or Twitter and they’ll see you all front and centre, on Tyneside, on May 21.

Twister Welcome A New Nowhere

Sponsored by EGH Radio Rocks, the home of unsigned rock music, 24/7 and the home of Anne’s Rock Show, Monday’s from 9pm.

Twister, headline the main stage at the O2 Academy in Newcastle for the first time and alongside them will be some special friends with the second announcement being the addition of A New Nowhere.

The quartet, a melodic, atmospheric rock band from Tyneside consists of Mark Gregg (vocals & guitar), Kev Gregg (guitar), Martin Hudson (bass) and Jack Wilson (drums) have recently released their debut single ‘You and Me’ amidst some acclaim.

With a little over twelve months together on the rock circuit the lads are doing alright with the video for their single, we all know what happened there, putting them in the spotlight on a grander scale than maybe even they could have imagined.

“There was certainly method in madness doing the video for ‘You and Me,’” began guitarist Kev.

“Granted it was more attention seeking than anything but it worked and that was the aim really.

“It’s more of a debut with the record label so it made sense for people to come and see it more. The previous release (Dark Place) was more about finding out where we were at.

“Mark and I have always been into music and have been with bands, wrote songs etc., but when we were doing a cover of a Tom Petty track I realised that he, Mark, had the better voice.

“Then, when were at a Foo Fighters gig, we started talking about doing something and with every song being different then it’s a good variety so we got our acts together.

“We went through a few different bass players before Martin came on board and, no disrespect to them as they’ve been great, but he (Martin) has brought that grungy style and we get along really well, on the same wavelength.”

 

This weekend their year continues, taking things up another level as A New Nowhere support Twister on the O2 Academy main stage, the start of an incredible summer of fun for the lads which will also see several festivals, and more, before heading into the studio to lay down the tracks for their debut album.

“We’ve always been aware of the Twister lads for a good few years now,” continued Kev.

“When I saw his post on social media I messaged Stevie a couple of times about it, you have to be relentless if you want something and it just went from there.

“We genuinely though that it was going to be a low key affair but we’d have said yes anyway and we now can’t wait to get on with what will be a great gig.

“We’ve never played the main stage before so supporting Twister is just brilliant.

“After this weekend we’ve got a few festivals lined up, interviews on some local radio stations then, in September, we head into the studio to start recording our debut album for early next year.

“We pretty much have what we need for it but anything can still happen between now and then.”

Tickets for the Academy show, priced at £7 entry (£8 on the door) and £11 VIP are available direct from A New Nowhere, or from www.officialtwister.co.uk.

You can follow A New Nowhere’s progress on social media via Facebook or Twitter and they’ll see you all front and centre, on Tyneside, on May 21.