Showcasing different genres and musical talents that are both local and non-local, Circuit is Independent Sunderland’s newest gig night with cheap tickets and high-quality entertainment! On Friday 10th February, Independent played host to three spectacular bands – Post Rome, Chloe Gardner and Phil Madeley. We went down to check them out!

Best live music night in Sunderland!


POST ROME Sunderland Vibe 1


The performance started off strong with Post Rome, a hugely uplifting, Sunderland born indie alt-rock band. Made up of lifelong friends with some recent additions, this performance wasn’t Post Rome’s first gig at Independent and hopefully won’t be the last! These lads created a great performance and lively atmosphere to kickstart off the show, you could tell that they were eager and passionate about playing in their hometown. They even powered through after some technical errors with the drum kit. With unique original songs and lots of engagement with the audience I could only wish that their set list lasted longer or that they get their own gig to headline again sometime soon.


Chloe Gardner Sunderland Vibe 1


Following Post Rome was front woman Chloe Gardner and her band; who are also local to Sunderland and have recently performed at Sunderland’s Waves Festival last November. Gardner has toured Europe as a backing vocalist and guitarist for rock band Status Quo, however being the lead is certainly where she shines most. One thing I must say is that Gardner certainly has talent and a very angelic voice, however I was amazed by the talent of her lead guitarist and backing vocalist Michael Potts, who not only had a powerful voice but a true connection with his guitar. Together these two (as well as their bassist, Lewis Cooke, and drummer, Alex Baker) are a band made for each other that truly work well, creating amazing music because of it.

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Finally, the headliner, Phil Madeley,  all the way from London, started off his UK tour in Sunderland and finished it in Birmingham the following week. This tour started just shy of his newest EP release titled Nothing Is Sacred (Anymore) which features four songs, one of which is by the same name as the EP. Madeley is a truly gifted musician with a unique wardrobe and great sense of fashion, although I don’t think the rest of his band fit in with his dress sense! To add to his uniqueness, Madeley manages to create positive and laidback songs about somewhat metaphorical circumstances, mainly about issues such as alienation and mistrust, a man who genuinely has a way with words.


Phil Madeley Sunderland Vibe 1


Overall, a variety of bands with different vibes but a passion for music and raw talent. Independent is one of Sunderland’s most loved venues that always manages to find and promote lesser-known local and non-local bands that fit the interest of Sunderland’s local youth culture, getting these musicians successfully noticed by more music lovers.

Words and Photos by Tilly Brown 

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