MUSIC fans can look forward to another year of top acts, thanks to a Sunderland record shop.
Since Frankie & the Heartstrings set up Pop Recs in Fawcett Street in June 2013 they’ve brought a host of big names to perform in the city, many for free.
So far their record store, gallery and gig space, which was set up in a derelict former Tourist Information Office, has welcomed the likes of Franz Ferdinand, Badly Drawn Boy, Maximo Park, Tim Burgess, of The Charlatans, and Gruff Rhys, from Super Furry Animals.
The store is kicking off its free gigs this year with Little Comets, who will perform on February 17, followed by indie pop outfit Dutch Uncles on March 1.
Frankie & the Heartstrings are also in talks with a household name to perform in the coming weeks, who are due to be announced soon.
Indie trio Little Comets proved to be one of the most popular acts to play the store when they stormed the stage last year.
They’re hoping to repeat that success when they take to the stage later this month to perform tracks from third album Hope Is Just A State Of Mind, which will be released the day before the gig.
Heartstrings drummer Dave Harper said: “We had one of our biggest crowds when Little Comets last performed.
“They’ve got an extremely loyal following, especially with the younger crowd. Sometimes when you’re 14, 15, 16 you can’t get in to clubs, but at Pop Recs we give bands the chance to really get in touch with their fans.”
As well as their Sunderland set, the Little Comets lads are heading out on tour across the UK.
Lead singer and guitarist Rob said: “We finished the album at the start of January and since then we’ve been trying to have a bit of time off with our families, but it feels like we’re busier than ever now.
“We feel really good now that we’ve finished the album and it’s a bit of a weight off. We’re really happy with it, so we’re just looking forward to everyone hearing it and finding out what everyone thinks.”
He added: “We kept putting the date back and back on it because we wanted to get it right and didn’t want to rush it for the sake of getting it out.
“It’s quite representative of our lives right now and our opinions about things. It’ll be good to look back on it in 10 to 15 years’ time and remember what our lives were like back then.”
l Little Comets play Pop Recs, in Fawcett Street, on February 17 at 5.30pm. They will also be signing copies of their new album. Entry is free.