Ainsdale teenager reaches finals of annual music competition

4th November 2016

Ainsdale teenager Daniel Astles has been named as one of the finalists in the annual Merseyrail Sound Station music competition.

The competition, which is celebrating its 4th anniversary this year, is a unique collaboration between Merseyrail and renowned music magazine Bido Lito!

The competition encouraged local, undiscovered musicians to film themselves on a smartphone, performing an original track at one of seven designated Performance locations on the Merseyrail network.

The videos were then uploaded to the Merseyrail Sound Station Facebook page and the ten best entries were invited to perform at a one-day festival at Moorfield’s train station.

Daniel, 18, who performs under the name Astles, describes his style of music as ambient electric guitar with big vocals

He added: “I really want to create music that people can invest in and relate too.

“I think that’s the most important thing, to write songs which people believe in. There’s no better feeling than someone telling you your song means something to them.”

A panel of music industry experts select the final winner, who will record with former Joy Division and New Order Engineer Michael Johnson. They also receive a full year of professional music industry mentoring, recording time and free train travel on Merseyrail.

The eventual winner also gains the opportunity to appear on the project’s free monthly podcast which features exclusive live sessions with some of the region’s most exciting new bands, the latest new sounds from across the Merseyrail network, and breaking new music news from Liverpool. The Sound Station project also curate a pop-up stage which gives emerging artists an opportunity to play at the regions top festivals including Sound City, Africa Oyé and LIMF.

David O’Leary, Commercial Director for Merseyrail, said: “Astles is a fantastic local musician and we are looking forward to hearing him perform in the final competition.”

Former winners include Katy Alex and rapper Blue Saint who both have gone on to perform at some of the area’s biggest festivals and gigs and develop their sound as a result of the mentoring process.

The Merseyrail Sound Station final takes place on November 19 between 1pm-5pm at Moorfields with a presentation evening taking place at new music venue Hus.

For more information on how to get involved with the competition, visit

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