- Tash Hagz is the performance name for Birmingham UK based musician, Mike Shields. Describing himself as a singer-songwriter enthusiast, his spare time is spent in his home studio crafting modern alternative rock music.
Mike Shields aka Tash Hagz, has been exploring musical landscapes and honing his skills for some time resulting in his signature blend of acoustic & distorted guitars, harmonies, and melodic craftsmanship. Mike's story begins like so many, at home, growing up in Frodsham, UK where his parents introduced him to an array of music that featured everything from Billy Connolly and The Beatles to acts like The Clancy Brothers and Robin Hall & Jimmie MacGregor. Later a life changing book would introduce him to acts like Big Star, Gang of Four, The Velvet Underground, and Joni Mitchell. Mike's own playing began with an old jazz standards songbook, learning chords on his Dad’s Spanish guitar, crafting his own melodies to accompany the chords and from his pre-teens onwards he worked through several bands exploring folk, blues, progressive rock and indie. But soon, real life caused disruption and Mike surrendered, plunging headlong into a successful non-musical career. But a true calling never ceases and Mike found himself being woken up at night by fresh new melodies pleading with him to give them life. He surrendered to the calling, setting up his own home recording studio and taking time to develop his audio engineering and production skills while working on his vocal prowess. Tracks produced as TashHagz have been mentioned in the same breath as David Bowie, The Flaming Lips, Nirvana, and Abba, giving credence to Mike's unique and eclectic musical perspective and his ability to blend diverse palettes of sound together to form his own musical tapestries. TashHagz's first release, “Into My Arms” showcases Mike’s diverse skills, featuring him playing everything but drums and which shines with its melodic vibes which have left many a listener applauding including Grammy-nominated producer Victor James who has described Shields as “a very original songwriter.” TashHagz already have several albums worth of songs written, each an honest, organic track coloured in with catchy melodic hooks. You are invited in to their world to listen and sample the smorgasbord of sound. And like the first taste of a foreign dish, you might struggle to describe it, be at a loss for words, but you’ll definitely keep coming back for more.
- singing, music production / mastering
- indie rock, alternative rock
Very interesting style. Original voice and delivery. Enjoy the massive opening chords breaking down into the verse. A nice mix of retro and modern pop on the chorus. Overall a very worthwhile effort. Elvis Costello fan?
Well, that's a little intriguing! Its a melodic song with a memorable chorus, and could easily be considered "commercial" if one wanted to think in such terms. But the production and arrangement with its interesting use of light and shade, and interplay of acoustic and electric instruments, gives the track a less obvious (and therefore more interesting) progression than standard commercial fare. Seems to me the idea behind it is indeed to lure the listener in with a straightforward enough melody, and then mess with their mind a little. Only a little, and in a not at all unpleasant way. If so, I'd say it's a success. If not, it's still true anyway. The production suits the song, and effects such as the occasional stop / start and utilising various instruments' textures only when needed all work in favour of the song, while still perhaps giving an insight into the creative processes of the artist. The overall effect, with this being the first TashHagz track I've heard, is of piqued interest. In which case, job well done. "TashHagz". I just got the joke.
Nice little track that goes from strength to strength, I found myself enjoying this more and more as the track progressed. Perhaps the initial verse comes in a little weak (in comparison to what follows at least) but on the second verse I variation on the standard line is very much appreciated. Overall while the vocal delivery may not be everybodys cup of tea it worked for me The chorus is the real shining moment of this song and I found myself humming it later, particularly to the brilliant backing vocals. The final solo reminded me of Weezer on their track Suzanne and that is a good thing.