Matt’s final show: Harlequin’s Kiss hit The Hare and Hounds

Harlequin’s Kiss are back, this time for MacMillan Cancer Support. We’ll be sharing a bill with Modern Day Delilahs – a tribute to Kiss, along with Got the T-Shirt and our old friends Uncle Jim. Tickets are £5.

Modern Day Delilahs seem to be new to the tribute scene. Following the footsteps of a band with a stage presence like Kiss, we expect this will make for an explosive night at the legendary Birmingham venue.

Got The T-Shirt are an established 4 piece Pop/Rock Party Covers Band based in the West Midlands, covering artists from the heavier side of the Sixties including The Kinks and The Stones, through to modern heavyweights such as Kings Of Leon and The Killers.

Uncle Jim shared a stage with us in Cheslyn Hay, and bring you a unique blend of songs from artists such as Foo Fighters, Lenny Kravitz, Velvet Revolver, The Who and many more.

This will be a special gig for us, as it marks the departure of rhythm guitarist Matt Frobisher. Matt is retiring from music for the foreseeable future, and whether you were a fan of his acoustic punk solo project, his theatrical metal group March of Fate, or his work with us I’m sure you’ll join us in wishing him well for his future. We’re going to make this the gig you remember him by, so it will be well worth your while to see what is set to be a massive night of classic rock in King’s Heath.

The Hare & Hounds is at 106 High Street, Kings Heath, Birmingham, B14 7JZ


Swampy’s Birthday Bash

We’re pleased to announce that the first outing of our full stage show this year will be on Sunday 23rd April for Swampy’s Birthday Bash at the Roadhouse in Stirchley, Birmingham.

This all-day event opens its doors at 3pm and features a range of local rock and metal bands, all for £5 in. This year’s event is in memory of Swampy’s late grandmother, Rebecca Langan, who recently lost her battle with cancer. All proceeds will be going to St Mary’s Hospice. Eight bands are currently advertised, including our good friends Tear It Down.

The headliners for the day are Silent Jack, a hard rocking sleaze band from Birmingham with the attitude, style and badass music that will make any individual cry out in climax. Silent Jack are wowing audiences not just in Birmingham but across England with amazing stage performances and great music.  No filler. No compromises. Just rip roaring, sexy music designed to rock your clothes off!

The Roadhouse is at Wharfside Leisure Complex, Lifford Lane, Stirchley, Birmingham, B30 3DZ.

Advance tickets are available here.

Stripped Down

In a first for 2017, Harlequin’s Kiss will be performing a rare semi-acoustic set at 1000 Trades in the Jewellery Quarter. Supporting Stonehouse Jack, a “rogue folk rock” duo, we’ll be joining a line-up that includes Jessie Desai and Godiva Sonic Alchemy for what is shaping up to be a musical treat in the intimate venue.

stonehouse jack poster

1000 Trades is at 16 Frederick Street, Birmingham, B1 3HE.

An Announcement

Firstly, we would like to assure you that we are not splitting up. However, our rhythm guitarist, Matt Frobisher, has expressed his intention to retire from music this summer. We are still available for gigs, and it’s going to be business as usual for the next couple of months at least. Email us at if you are interested in joining us as a rhythm guitarist or multi-instrumentalist.

We’ll leave you with Matt’s own words:

“It is with a heavy heart that starting now, over the summer I will be stepping away from music for the foreseeable future. Recent events in my personal and professional life have put me under intense and relentless stress, and this has left me both emotionally and physically drained. This has made committing properly to my music very difficult, if not untenable as I lack the time or energy required to be proactive not only in writing and performing but in the admin too. I need to rearrange my work-life balance to ensure I feel well in myself to tackle some difficult and fast-approaching challenges head on as my current hectic lifestyle is beginning to do more harm than good and at some point I will burn out or worse, make myself ill. I fear that time is quite close.

Harlequin’s Kiss will of course continue following my departure however I would like to say that getting you guys back on the road to success has been amazing. From being on almost hiatus with no guitarist or drummer when I joined to being a full blown 5 piece has been an amazing new chapter. I will not, however leave hastily and leave them in the mire in order to search for my replacement. I will stick around until mid-summer so that someone is found and I have shown them the ropes, so to speak, in order to allow the band to keep gigging.

This is not a decision I have made lightly as the last four or five years of performing have been incredible and have played a huge part in my life, and in some ways saved it. I would like to sincerely thank all of the promoters who have booked myself or my bands during this time, the many artists and bands I have drawn strong friendships with and had the immense pleasure to share a stage with, and all of the fans who took me/the bands into your hearts, especially those who actively supported us with buying merchandise, CDs etc. It means a lot that people love and care about the hard work put into everthing I have done, either by myself or with my amazing bandmates. I would like to say that you guys rock, and keep live music alive and well!

There is a chance I may come to regret my decision when times become easier, and if that may be the case you will undoubtedly hear of my resurrection. Until then you might catch me at the occasional open mic night as I will probably need to unwind once in a while.

But until then, keep supporting live music, keep rocking, and stay safe in this mad, mad world!

Matthew Acton-Varian a.k.a. Matt Frobisher”

The rest of us wish him all the best in his future endeavours.

We’re Back

Open mic 0603

After longer than planned squirrelled away in the studio, Harlequin’s Kiss declared themselves open for business last night at the Roadhouse. Taking the stage for a slot at the Monday open mic night, Birmingham’s wildest rock ‘n’ roll band returned to live performance with the energy and style the Midlands music scene has come to expect from them.

Harlequin’s Kiss are now taking bookings for the rest of 2017. Venues and promoters can get in touch at

We would like to thank the team at the Roadhouse for giving their support and indulgence, and especially to Sean for the photo and for running a great Birmingham music institution.

Harlequin’s Kiss Roadhouse show – support confirmed

We’re pleased to announce that supporting acts have been confirmed for our headline show at Birmingham’s Roadhouse on 24th November.

The opening act will be Wolverhampton rockers Minimal Silence, whose new EP “Raven Black” is soon to be released.

Second on the bill, we’re proud to share a stage again with Tear It Down, who joined us supporting Fear Me December back in August.

This all comes before the biggest show we’ve ever done. And you’ll be getting all this for just £2. So do come and join us at the Roadhouse, Wharfside Leisure Complex, Lifford Lane, Stirchley, Birmingham, B30 3DZ.

T-shirts and the “Playing Rough” EP will be available for sale.

Harlequin’s Kiss Return to the Roadhouse

After far too long away, Harlequin’s Kiss are returning to Birmingham’s famous live music venue, the Roadhouse. This time it’s not just for a little noodle around at the open mic night. It’s not even a mid-bill slot on a rock showcase. That’s right, folks, we’re playing live, one night only, in our own right.

We’ll be headlining a Thursday show on 24th November, doors from 7pm. Support is currently TBC, but we aim to get some of Birmingham’s best on stage before us to give you a night of pure rock fury. And all this will be for the princely sum of £2, payable on the door.

The Roadhouse is located at the Wharfside Leisure Complex, Lifford Lane, Stirchley, Birmingham, B30 3DZ

Breaking News


Harlequin’s Kiss are pleased to announce that on 12th October we’re returning to the Actress & Bishop in Birmingham’s Jewellery Quarter to open a night of extreme metal. The headline act are Steorrah, a four-piece from the Rhineland who blend a doomier version of Swedish death metal with song-oriented prog and jazz and an almost British sense of melancholy.

The middle spot on the bill will be taken by Rannoch, who offer a refreshing take on the progressive death metal subgenre with focused extremity, fastidious technical precision, and rich songwriting skills.

This is going to be one hell of a night, and we can guarantee that it will be like nothing you’ve ever seen before!

Advance tickets are available here, or can be purchased on the door for the bargain sum of £5.

The Actress & Bishop is located at 36 Ludgate Hill, Birmingham, B3 1EH.

New Drummer!

With yesterday’s gig announcement, you’re probably wondering who exactly is keeping rhythm for us. Chris has indeed left us, and our silence over September has been because we’ve been training his replacement.

We were lucky this time. By some miracle we found a new drummer within a week of Chris announcing his intentions. This guy has taken to our material like a duck to water, allowing us to get back out and playing with a six week turnaround.

This man has an international flavour: he’s Italian, and his previous experience includes a stint with a party band in Poland. He now joins the tour de force that is Harlequin’s Kiss.

Ladies and gentlemen, we are proud to announce that the man making his debut on sticks with us at the Haygate in Telford is none other than Giulio Tarantino! He hits the stage with us for the first time on 3rd October, when we support Fear Me December.