Video Interview: Jack Garratt

Jack Garratt is one bubbly, passionate and funny lad!

Video Interview: Kodaline

Watch Jay and Steve of Kodaline read their songs in different accents.

HITS exclusive: Martin Kelly

Martin performed his song "Heart On A Wire" on a bridge in the woods.

Gig Photos: Jack Garratt

Photos and a very chaotic review of Jack's sold out show at Freiheiz, Munich.

Audio Interview: Rhodes

The very talented and very lovely Rhodes gave us a call and it was great!

Gig Photos: Noah Guthrie at Kellerklub, Stuttgart

Hey guys!

One thing I've always loved about the music community I'm in, is that there's this honest appreciation and support for one another's work.
Everyone is grown up and aware of the fact that there are so many talented people out there.

Which is why I've decided that I only want to support people like that.
What's the point in back-stabbing others?
What's the point in thinking you're the only one good at your craft?

I certainly don't have time for that and I want to cheer for everyone who doesn't either.

Noah Guthrie is one of those artists who support others, who seem to be in awe with the work that other artists put out there.
And I seriously can't clap loud enough to show how great I think that is!

On Monday, September 19th, I went to his show in Stuttgart. We filmed an interview beforehand which you'll be able to watch super soon. Subscribe to us on YouTube so you won't miss it.

Noah Guthrie is a singer/songwriter based in Greer, South Carolina, USA.
His music combines the key elements of Americana, Soul and Acoustic.

Noah grew up in household filled with music, so he naturally discovered his love for it at an early age.
He has been covering songs on YouTube for almost 6 years now.
His most famous cover of LMFAO's "Sexy and I Know It" has reached almost 25 million views. This soulful rendition of the pop track obviously got a lot of well deserved attention.

Noah's talent also caught the attention of US hit series Glee's staff who asked him to audition for the role of Roderick Meeks, which he successfully did.

But Noah Guthrie is capable of way more than just covering songs. And his debut album "Among The Wildest Things" proved just that.

Over the years he opened concerts for Ed Sheeran, Neon Trees, Selena Gomez and many more.

During his second Germany tour this year, Noah stopped by in Stuttgart to play a gig at Stuttgart's most rock'n'roll venue, Kellerklub.

Below are impressions from the gig.

Noah was accompanied by his brother Ian on the drums. The two of them played new songs which will be on Noah's next album, as well as tracks from a his debut album.

Joking how he only seems to write sad songs and love songs, he sure knew how to keep the audience all happy.
Overall he was very happy to tell the stories behind the songs which the fans really enjoyed.

It was very obvious that the music Noah plays, is exactly the music he wants to play. The honesty in the songs and the passion in the way he delivered them just proved that this guy loves his job.

Between his original songs, Noah also decided to play a few covers.
George Michael's "Father Figure", which Noah performed on Glee was one of many great covers.
With his version of Amy Winehouse's "Valerie" he got the crowd to dance and sing along. (Myself included!)

Of course his very own version of "Sexy and I Know It" was another highlight and the audience made it very obvious they enjoyed it.

I had a fantastic evening watching the gig.
I love those evenings where it's just one or two people on stage playing heartfelt music.

Also really enjoyed the very lovely audience who was very kind to me as a photographer.

Watch the music video for Noah's latest single "Pardon Me" below!

Noah Guthrie online: Website | Twitter | Facebook | YouTube | Instagram

Massive thank you to David for arranging the evening and to Noah and Ian for the lovely chats.

Thank you for your visit!

Credits // Text & Photography: Vanessa Jertschewske

EP Review: "Ultraviolet" by Dagny

Hey guys!

I don't know about you, but I enjoy Summer.
That stereotypical carelessness, the feeling of the sun warming you up, the flowers all being in their best state, looking absolutely beautiful.

Of course there are things about Summer that aren't that great, but let's romanticize the season because it's almost over anyway.

To hold onto Summer 2016 a little longer, I'm super happy to review an EP for you today, that I think sums up the season perfectly.

Here's to Dagny's "Ultraviolet". 

Artist: Dagny
Title: Ultraviolet
Genre: Alternative, Pop
Label: Republic Records
Release date: 2nd September 2016
HITS rating: 8/10

Dagny is a singer/songwriter originally from Tromsø, Norway. Her sound has developed into alt-pop over the years.
She is now based in London, UK to write and record more music.

The last few years have seen Dagny play countless gigs and festivals which has gotten her a lot of attention and a loyal fanbase.

The talented and charming lady just released her debut EP and we're delighted to share it with you.

1) Fight Sleep
2) Ultraviolet
3) Too Young
4) Backbeat
5) Fool's Gold (feat. BØRNS)

Opener "Fight Sleep" sets the scene for the EP; it's a track that gives you the perfect impression of what the rest of the EP is going to sound like.
It starts off atmospheric but quickly develops a bouncy rhythm that makes you want to dance around in your room. (Or on the tube, depending wherever you might be at the time you're listening.)
The chorus has an anthem-like vibe to it; the layered backing vocals underline the carefree attitude of the song.

You're already up on your feet and ready to dance? Good!
Here comes title track "Ultraviolet" to make you shake those hips.
The track is carried by an up-tempo beat, sassy electric guitar chords and, of course, Dagny's stirring vocals that just transport the energy of the music so well.

Let's chat about the song I would totally call a Summer soundtrack, "Backbeat".
It's one of those tracks you didn't know you needed until you heard it.
This song has everything you need in a song when you just want to drive around in the countryside and enjoy the last few days of Summer.
The electric guitar is the heart of the song, sheltered by the infectious beats and carried by the sass in the singer's voice.

To sum it up: This EP is the perfect listen for those late Summer days in September which are those precious days we often use to reflect the season. 
All of the songs will make you want to wear a dress and a flowercrown and dance around in your room like you're at a festival. There's no reason why one wouldn't enjoy the bubbly, sassy and energetic tracks.
Dagny, thank you for giving us an EP that sounds just like Summer.

You should listen to these tracks: Ultraviolet, Backbeat

Dagny online: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Soundcloud | YouTube | Instagram

Thank you for your visit!

Credits // Text: Vanessa Jertschewske | Image: Dagny

Gig Photos: Ryan Vail at Weltcafé, Stuttgart

Hey guys!

You know how a lot of musicians say that making music is like a drug?
When you start doing it, you kind of want to carry on for as long as possible?

I'm pretty sure that's not just the case with music but also with other activities.
For me it would be photography. I love the entire process from charging the camera battery to uploading the final image.

It's something I thoroughly enjoy and don't think I'll grow tired of any time soon.

Last Tuesday I went to Stuttgart to watch Ryan Vail play a gig.
Before the gig we filmed a little interview with you can check out here.

Now, my number one gig essential is my camera- therefore I obviously wanted to photograph and capture the evening.

Ryan Vail is a singer/songwriter and producer from Derry, Ireland.
He blends electronica, folk and classical elements and adds his very own spices to the mixture, creating the unique, dark and mysterious sound that has gotten him a loyal fanbase.

His refreshing sounds has opened many doors for Ryan and so far he's played sessions for BBC Introducing and received radio play from multiple DJs such as Annie Mac and Zane Lowe.

In the past few years, Ryan has supported acts such as Nils Frahm, Jamie XX, Orbital and many more.

So far the musician has released three EPs, a collaborative album with Ciaran Lavery and his debut album "For Every Silence".

The first week of September 2016 has seen Ryan on his first Germany tour and it's safe to say that it's been a success.

Ryan's show in Stuttgart was an open air gig at Weltcafé.

It was a perfect late-Summer evening which started out relaxed but soon turned into an energetic dance party.
The one thing I kept noticing was how everybody just enjoyed themselves and seemed so chilled.

It's not every gig that around 500 people have a relaxed and carefree evening in the centre of a busy city such as Stuttgart.

Below are some photos of the evening which I hope you enjoy!

Listen to Ryan's track "1927" below.

Ryan Vail online: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Soundcloud | YouTube | Instagram

Big thanks to Ryan and Lyndon for the lovely evening.
And to Reiner for supporting great music and putting on great gigs!

Thank you for your visit!

Credits // Text & Photography: Vanessa Jertschewske

Video Interview: Ryan Vail

Hey guys!

For as much as I love creating any kind of content for house in the sand,
I always discover that video interviews and gig coverage are my two favourites.

Being able to step away from the computer and chat to people face to face is just more personal and more exciting.

Every interview is unique and different in certain ways and I think that's one of many reasons, why I adore the entire interview process; from research to uploading the final product.

I'm very happy to share another, super lovely chat with you today.
On Tuesday, September 9th I had a little conversation with Ryan Vail.

Ryan Vail is a singer/songwriter and producer from Derry, Ireland.
He blends electronica, folk and classical elements and adds his very own spices to the mixture, creating the unique, dark and mysterious sound that has gotten him a loyal fanbase.

His refreshing sounds has opened many doors for Ryan and so far he's played sessions for BBC Introducing and received radio play from multiple DJs such as Annie Mac and Zane Lowe.

In the past few years, Ryan has supported acts such as Nils Frahm, Jamie XX, Orbital and many more.

So far the musician has released three EPs, a collaborative album with Ciaran Lavery and his debut album "For Every Silence".

The first week of September 2016 has seen Ryan on his first Germany tour and it's safe to say that it's been a success.

Just an hour before his open air gig in Stuttgart, we sat down and had a little chat about the tour, being sunburned in Germany, Stranger Things and a lot more.

Check it out!

Listen to Ryan Vail here:

Ryan Vail online: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Soundcloud | YouTube | Instagram

Many thanks to Ryan for arranging the interview and the lovely chat!
Also many thanks to Lyndon for the fabulous company before and during the gig!
(And to Reiner for the great gin!)

Thank you for your visit!

Credits // Text, Image & Video: Vanessa Jertschewske

Album Review: "We Move" by James Vincent McMorrow

Hey guys!

I have no idea how many times I've told you that I think 2016 the year of fantastic releases.
But I'll tell you one more time today.

If you're a critical music fan, it can be easy for you to complain about the music industry.
It's true, there are a lot of songs out there that may not please your trained ear.
But there are also so many incredible records out there which deserve all the support they can get.

Here on house in the sand, we prefer to only speak about the music we really enjoy.
I've never seen a point in listening to an album I don't enjoy, only to write a review about it.

Today I get to continue sharing music I absolutely enjoy, by reviewing James Vincent McMorrow's newest LP!

Artist: James Vincent McMorrow
Title: We Move
Genre: Alternative
Label: Believe Recordings
Release date: 2nd September 2016
HITS rating: 8.5/10

James Vincent McMorrow is a singer/songwriter from Dublin, Ireland.
He started out as a drummer in different heavy metal bands, before he discovered the singer/songwriters from the 70s and picked up the guitar.

At the age of 19, the young musician started writing his own music which ties in the newly discovered folk elements as well as the edgier and modern sounds.
McMorrow's unique and rather high voice never fails to stand out.

- The Sparrow And The Wolf (EP) (2008)
- Early In The Morning (LP) (2010)
- Post Tropical (LP) (2014)
- We Move (LP) (2016)

James Vincent's cover of Chris Isaak's "Wicked Game" was used in the trailer of Game Of Thrones' sixth season.

And now that "We Move" is out, I'd like to share my thoughts with you!

1) Rising Water
2) I Lie Awake Every Night
3) Last Story
4)  One Thousand Times
5) Evil
6) Get Low
7) Killer Whales
8) Seek Another
9) Surreal
10) Lost Angles

Opener and first single off of the album "Rising Water" doesn't wait for you to get into the track; it's catchy, it's groovy and it will be stuck in your head for the next few days.
A strong and dominant bassline controls the dynamic of the song, whilst the synths give it a very modern vibe.
McMorrow's voice makes sure to create an intimate feeling which you'll gladly oblige to listen to. The soft backing vocals intensify the track ever so gently and prove that it doesn't need many elements to create a fantastic track.

The simplicity of the first track shall not give you any wrong impressions though;
James Vincent McMorrow is talented songwriter and knows how to use certain elements in order to make you swoon.
The bluesy "I Lie Awake Every Night" is one of those tracks which will make you want to lie awake for a while, just to listen to it.
The vocals on this track are on another level; warm, smooth and soothing vocals wrap you in a warm blanket to help you lie awake.

Another track I find really interesting is "Seek Another".
It greets you with some heavy beats only to then create a contrast by highlighting McMorrow's higher notes. The song presents the moody and edgy side of the album and again highlights the clever arrangements which James Vincent works oh so well.

To sum it up: You won't find a disappointing song on "We Move"; James Vincent McMorrow has created a record which demands you to dive into his world of music. Track 1-10 confirm that this album was worth the wait.

You should listen to these tracks: Rising Water, I Lie Awake Every Night,

To view the "Rising Water" music video in Germany, click here.

James Vincent McMorrow online: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Soundcloud | YouTube | Instagram

Thank you for your visit!

Credits // Text: Vanessa Jertschewske | Image: James Vincent McMorrow (press kit) | **this review was requested via email**

women in music: my experiences

Hey guys!

Women in music.
 A topic I didn't think I'd cover at some point.
Simply because in my opinion, there's no need to highlight either gender.
We should all be able to have the same rights, same opportunities, same experiences.

But we don't.

It's a fact.

I'll be completely honest; this post took a lot of time to write. It's still nowhere near being what I'm completely happy with, but I felt the need to upload it anyway.
Maybe it's interesting for you to read about my experiences and thoughts.

My main goal is to have you think about what I'm trying to say. And to think further than that.
I want you to find or secure your opinion about this topic and maybe I can help you by telling you what I think.

For the first few months of being somewhat little part of the music industry, I didn't have to deal with any sexist comments or encounters at all.
I think that's what allowed me to feel at home in this industry; experiencing it the way most men do.
No trouble, no rude comments.
Please notice that I use the expression "most men"- I'm aware that sexism isn't something only women have to deal with.

The first few bands and artists I got to work with are some of the most wonderful people I know.
Even though I was totally new to this industry and I was incredibly young - they never treated me like I wasn't on the same level. And for that I'm still incredibly thankful.

But of course, the time in which I experience sexism, had to come.

Last year I went on my first tour as a photographer.
A band of four men I had been friends with for a while, took me on the road with them - because they genuinely enjoyed my work.

Two gigs in, comments such as "so you're the groupie?" or "with how many of them did you sleep?", started rolling in.

Whilst you'd think these comments would come from uneducated and immature people,
I was rather surprised to have a promoter ask me in very serious tone, if I got to hang out with two artists last year, just because I slept with them.

I think a lot of times women are expected to just laugh at it and be polite about it.
But it's about time that we don't do that.

It's disrespectful towards our work, our skills and most importantly, it's fucking rude to indirectly call a woman a slut.

I met male photographers who made it very obvious that they thought I wasn't on the same level as they were.

I also met a male photographer who emailed me, once he had seen my work, apologising for questioning my skills because of my gender.

I've had guys push or elbow me whilst I was walking through the audience to photograph the band on stage.

I've had a fellow male blogger tell me that I'm only successful because I look a certain way.

Apparently some people don't think that women understand anything about music. That they only care about fashion and makeup. And that they don't have the same skills as men.

But being a woman in the media/music industry isn't always difficult because of men, unfortunately, a lot of times, it's other women who throw bricks.

I remember shooting Ed Sheeran back in 2014. I had access to the backstage areas because I had worked with his support act beforehand.
When a few girls saw my pass, they started calling me rather unflattering names.

I also remember a gig I photographed earlier this year, where another woman thought she was the only good woman in the photo pit.
 She "accidentally" hit me in the back multiple times and managed to always block my shots.

But why don't women support other women a lot more?
If anyone, we should be the first ones to cheer for each other and respect each other, right?
But not all of us do.
Because we're taught that there's only room for a few women in the industry.
Because we're being told that there's only limited spots available for us.
Because that's the way it currently is.

You think that's "just an excuse"?
 Check out festival line ups, tell me how many female acts you find.
Check out the charts, tell me how many female acts you find.

This is in no way a "men hating" post.
 I am lucky enough to work with some of the most talented, most wonderful and most supportive men that I think there are. Some of the people I receive most respect from, are men.
And I appreciate them dearly.

As a 20-year old woman, I can say that I want to be acknowledged for the work I do. 
The talent I have.
Not for the way I look or who my friends are.

 I don't want to be worried about what I'm wearing, because it might distract from my work.
I don't want to walk down the street, or into a music venue and be afraid of being whistled at, or worse - have a car full of dudes beep their car at me.

But then again I also realise that I'm leading a very fortunate life.

I am here, fighting for equality in the industry I work in,
when other women have to fight to be seen as an equal human being with the same right to be alive. To be seen and treated as a human, not an object that belongs to men.

Maybe it's a privilege that I can complain about these things, because that means I'm one of many women who finally get to be a part of this industry.
Maybe it's a privilege to be in this position, because it means we've created a situation that women before us may have dreamed of.

Many years ago, the women didn't have that opportunity, so we may all use it to make a change.

I hope any of this somehow found its' way to you.

If you want to talk about this topic, please feel free to leave a comment or speak to me on social media.
I want to listen and chat to you.

Thank you for your visit.

Credits // Text & Photography: Vanessa Jertschewske

Album Review: "Black Beauty" by The Twilight Hours

Hey guys!

One of many fascinating things about music is that you can control and change your mood, just by listening to a certain kind of music.
To me, that's something we should cherish by all means and appreciate this powerful form of art.

For as much as I love really energetic rock music, I have to say, I also enjoy the slightly more relaxed and settled down albums.

The album I'm going to review for you today, is a treat for the ears and I can't wait to hear (or read) what you guys think.

Band: The Twilight Hours
Title: Black Beauty
Genre: Rock
Label: Independent
Release date: 15th July 2016
HITS rating: 7/10

The Twilight Hours are a rock band from Minneapolis, US.
Formed quite a few years ago, the two main members John Munson and Matt Wilson had already been making music together for decades.

With their debut record out in 2007, the band had plenty of time to tour the album, build a strong fanbase and truly find The Twilight Hours' sound.

With their brand new record "Black Beauty", the band is ready to continue their creative journey.

Here's what we think about the album!

1) Help Me Find The Way
2) Maybe 
3) Troublemaker
4) Soundwaves
5) Flow
6) Down To Forever
7) Telephone
8) Call Me
9) Lost In A Rain Cloud
10) Touch My Mind
11) Rain
12) Sioux City Swinger
13) Anymore

Opener "Help Me Find The Way" welcomes the listener with a big smile. The warm sound of acoustic guitars, soft but steady percussions and a happy sounding piano greets you before it allows you to sit down and relax.
Mellow and calming vocals give you the opportunity to find comfort in them. Overall, the song creates a friendly atmosphere.

That there is more to The Twilight Hours than just acoustic tracks, shows when the album throws the track "Soundwaves" your way. We are starting to drift into a world of jazz-y R'n'B vibes paired with a little bit of rock and sprinkle of folk. The song keeps the warm and friendly atmosphere which is present from the very beginning, but it takes it to a livelier level.

An album wouldn't be complete without an anthem, you say? Do not worry, The Twilight Hours have got you covered. "Anymore" lets you sink into a soft duvet of expressive vocals, beautiful guitar arrangements and united backing vocals.

To sum it up: The depth of the instrumentals shines through in every track and highlights the vocals oh so gently.
You can tell that the band has been making music together for years; the elements seem to flow together naturally to create a sound which embrases you with open arms.

You should listen to these tracks: Help Me Find The Way, Maybe, Anymore

The Twilight Hours online: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Bandcamp

Thank you for your visit!

Credits // Text: Vanessa Jertschewske | Image: The Twilight Hours | *a physical copy of this album was sent to us*

Gig Photos: The Hush Sound at The Shelter, Detroit

Hey guys! 

When I started this website, I had no idea that at some point I'd have some talented people help me out creating content.

With today's post, all of Team HITS have their work published on here now.

To me, being able to work with a team is a massive deal and it's all very exciting.
Of course, the main goal will always be sharing music we love and so get ready for even more music content on HITS.

Before you dive into today's gig coverage, please take some time to check out The Photo Ladies- a collective of female music photographers which I'm looking enough to be a part of. And that's also how I got to know Reva and Saar, the two ladies in team HITS.

Reva went to photograph the Like Vines 10 Year Anniversary Tour at The Shelter in Detroit on August 8th.

Support acts Falls and Merriment put on a great gig, just like headliner The Hush Sound.

Check out the photos below!

REVA MAY online: website | instagram


Falls online: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Soundcloud | YouTube | Instagram


Merriment online: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Tumblr | YouTube


The Hush Sound online: Website | Twitter | Facebook | YouTube

Thank you for your visit!


Credits // Text: Vanessa Jertschewske | Photography: Reva May