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 Gigs, Thread pinned in memory of Nobby88
nobby88
Posted: Apr 8 2006, 01:20 PM
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The Subways 7th April - B'ham Academy

Firstly, the support band, The Milk Teeth, were surprisingly good. They were a crossover act of Indie/Rock, which worked well, with the exception of 2 tracks which were in the mould of RATM, and were just a mess. Possibly a name that could get bigger.

There was a buzz around the sell-out crowd as, although The Subways released their album last July, this was their first headline tour, in the Midlands at least. From the opening bars of "Mary" to the final encore of "Rock n roll queen" the predominently student crowd, was lapping up everything given to them. In probably the maddest scenes I've seen at a gig for 3 or 4 years (except for Kasabian Sept. 2004 and PWEI & The Prodigy 2005) there was just no let up from the leaping around. Ona sidenote, I'm not aching too badly for an old 'un. The band also showcased 4 or 5 songs that they've written whilst in America, and each of these went down a storm, without the usual fight for the bar when the dreaded words "here's a new one for you" came out. I do feel that the new tracks, with one exception, were all a bit samey.

The only problem with a band that produce 3 minute pop/rock songs, who only have one album, is the likelihood of a 45 minute set. This too was forgotten, as they played a full hour & a quarter, without too much time for catching breath. They played with an exhuberence which is all too rare. They genuinely seemed to be having a whale of a time. As for the singer climbing the amp stacks, rallying the troops mid song, then stagediving into the audience, he should have done it just the once and the effect would have been fantastic. Being old & cynical, when he does it for the 3rd time, with the rhythm section holding the fort, it smacks of theatrics. These things only work if spontaneous. But hey, I'm being pedantic (& a grumpy old man) to be picking that out from a great gig.

In short, if you want to hear the sound of being 17, buy the album "Young for Eternity". If you want reminding of what it's like to be young & having the time of your life, you will do far worse than to catch them live.

P.S. The bassist (Charlotte ?) is a proper rock chick, which helps.


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Eddy
Posted: Apr 8 2006, 09:07 PM
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nobby - you write excellent music reports. Thankyou.

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Foxylady Dee
Posted: Apr 10 2006, 02:51 PM
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LOL, Nobby that was a funny report! I agree with the 'pedantic' and 'grumpy old man' he he he!

I really like The Subways. Sounds like they deliver a great show.



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nobby88
Posted: Apr 27 2006, 07:20 AM
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Primal Scream - Wolverhampton Wulfrun Hall 26/4

Set up as a showcase for their new album, the scream team played a very low key venue, as the Wulfrun only holds 6-700. I should also state that I'll try to be as objective as possible, but Primal Scream are my favourite band, still in existance, so certain aspects may be slightly clouded.

They began with the new single (country girl ?), which I'm still not the biggest fan of, but it could be a grower. The first half of the set contained 8 new songs and various tracks from the back catalogue. The second half cranked up as they played extensively from "Xtrmntr" and "Vanishing Point". The usual highlights came through "Kowalski", "Rocks", "Accelerator", "Swastika Eyes", "Burning Wheel", and were played with a fresh enthusiasm. Due to the small scale show, the usual light show could not be employed, but even with the limitation, they still produced the intensity that is associated with a Primal Scream show. They blast away with a huge wall of sound, teamed with extensive strobe lighting. A special version of 'Screamadelica's' "Slip inside this house", which was done in the style of the original (by The Elevators), rather than the dub version they employed in 1991, was fantastic, but I'm safe in the assumption that a majority of the crowd didn't recognise the track, as it passed unnoticed, whereas anything else from that album had a huge response.

Only small criticisms I could make (I said I'd try to be objective), were that after building the gig to a crescendo, ending with "Moving on up", which had the crowd in the usual state of euphoria (this part of the crowd anyway), they proceeded on an encore which contained 6 break-neck tracks, which I found, detracted from the main set. Each track on their own, eg "City" or "Detroit" are fine tracks (but not their best), but one after the other, just left the crowd slightly punch-drunk. My other criticism (and this is hair-splitting) was that, for me "Kowalski" is their best live track, with its brooding bass, and shocking synth sounds. I just felt last night the bass was low in the mix, and although it was still a bl00dy good version, a lot of the menace of the track was lost.

As for the new stuff, I was really taken by it. A lot of reviews from London 2 weeks ago, stated that the new album was very "70's, Exile, Rolling Stones. So much so it's a pale imitation". This led me to half-dread the new songs, as they went down the same route, post-Screamadelica with the release of "Give out, but don't give up". That album, both critically and commercially, bombed, and although "Vanishing point" won them back medals with the critics, it wasn't until the release of "Xtrmntr" in 2000, that they had anything like commercial success, teamed with huge critical praise. The evidence of last night pointed that "Riot City Blues", will not be the same as "GUBDGO", as there's far more variation in the songs.

It's just good to see them back, after losing their deal following the flop of 2002's "Evil Heat". They are a band who evolve their material and it's a better place for them.


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jan001
Posted: Apr 27 2006, 08:22 AM
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Sounds like you had a good night Nobby smile.gif

I've very little knowledge of Primal Scream, except for their performances at Glastonbury etc which I've managed to catch on TV. What I've seen and heard has always impressed me.

I didn't know that they'd been through hard times though - didn't they have a 'best of' album out a couple of years back?? I've been tempted to buy it - I expect you'll tell me that I should!!


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nobby88
Posted: Apr 27 2006, 08:48 AM
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Hi Jan

Their label released their best of "Dirty hits", in 2004 I think, as a parting shot.

As you said I think it's worth the money, especially as HMV usually have it in their sales for much less than a tenner. There is a limited edition version with a seperate remix CD, but unless you're a fan, it's not worth the money, as it doesn't particularly add to the songs. It's also a handy way of seeing where they are now in relation to where they've come from (unless you're after the early pop albums, which are never included on these things).


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jan001
Posted: Apr 27 2006, 09:03 AM
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Thanks Nobby

I'll keep an eye out for 'Dirty Hits' (good title!!) when I'm next having a browse for CDs smile.gif


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Foxylady Dee
Posted: Apr 27 2006, 12:32 PM
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Aww, Nobs, I LOVE Primal Scream!
It's great that they're still around and makin' music.
I love their dancey/rocky/trippy groove. Will have to check out their noo stuff... smile.gif


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nobby88
Posted: Jul 12 2006, 03:33 PM
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The Brian Jonestown Massacre - 29.06.06 - Brum Academy 2

T'was a hot & sweaty night in the small upstairs bar-room in the Academy. The tour had been low key and this gig was only switched from the Bar Academy (with it's 150 capacity) late on, to this room & it's 600 capacity.

The band stumbled on in their usual chaotic manner and the gig just sort of started. I love this band live as there's nothing 'clean cut' about their gigs. They are Californian slackers and exude that attitude. It must be said at this point that Anton was absolutely shitf@ced and during the gig did make certain comments which, his being American & therefore ignorant of our culture (or any culture, it could be argued) accepted, he really should not have made ie using a certain term for Asians and a comedy Hitler impression.

The band lurched into the set and gripped the audience straight off. With 9 albums (+ mini albums) to date, they have a habit of changing the set nightly and playing the same song in different styles, as evidenced by others there who had followed them on the tour. The early part of the gig was spent playing in a shoegazey manner, which was totally different to the recorded tracks and yet suited the tunes. The version of "You look great when I'm fcuked up" was so good, I could have left at that point & gone home happy. "Introesque", "Jennifer" & "Here to go" were also personal highlights of the show, but this band is about more than purely the music.

They play a psychadelia-tinged pop, lurching from the light to the heavy end. They play a multi-layered guitar (3 guitarists + bass), which whilst powerful, is never deafening. In fact, as witnessed tonight, it is often beautiful. As I said earlier, another thing I love about them is that they don't cleanly define the act. Anton will regularly address the crowd whilst they try to work out the next track, often fighting guitar technicians over which guitars are to be used. Following the inspirational version of "YLGWIFU", they left the guitar screaming feedback for a good couple of minutes, and whilst the guitarist sparked up a ciggy, the others dropped off stage to chat to the crowd off mike. Once the bloke had finished his smoke, he started to harness the sound down, gradually to the right key, where he started the next track. At this the others climbed back on and carried on.

All in all a much overlooked band who are worth checking out.



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Eddy
Posted: Jul 13 2006, 07:35 AM
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That sounds like the sort of concert I would enjoy. From what you write it has a certain spontaneous feel to it ... all the bickering about the guitars, cigs being lit, discussions about which songs to do. I love it. I hate 'polished' acts.
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Northern Git
Posted: Jul 13 2006, 02:06 PM
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Great reviews Nobby , must try out Primal Scream n BJM who sound a bit like early Fleetwood Mac but not bluesy(?) as have only heard intermittant trax even though they've both been around for ages.
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nobby88
Posted: Jul 13 2006, 06:01 PM
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Cheers Guys.

I always have certain reservations with live shows of 'organised chaos', just to fit a bands image. The BJM however, just ooze the juinkie/slacker mentality and it is an experience to see them live. Thankfully when I've seen them, Anton (who is the BJM) has always been in a good mood. Which is good as it makes the whole gig cool.

I urge you to see the film 'Dig', which is a biopic of the BJM, along with The Dandy Warhols. It only contains bit's of tracks, but it was shot over 7 years, and illustrates the 'live experience' fully. I would also make a point of forcing kids who find the junkie lifestyle cool, to watch it, just to see how fcuked up Anton's life gets when he's using. There ain't nothing glamourous about the paranoia and aggression brought on by the heroin.

As is often quoted in the film, "please just stay alive Anton".

As for listening, the 'Tepid Peppermint Wonderland' best of, is as good a place to start, as any. Of the original albums, 'Tomorrows heroes today', is an accessible start, although i-tunes (if I remember correctly) has 'Strung out in Heaven', which ain't bad.

For the Primals, the 'Dirty Hits' compilation will give an indication of their evolution, although it conveniently avoids any pre-Screamadelica tracks. Don't worry about the limited, remix CD pack, as it adds nothing to the original tracks. For original albums, 'Xtrmntr' is my favourite, but it is space/electro rock. Riot City Blues, ain't bad (When the bomb drops, is my highlight), but it ain't too great. Probably 'Vanishing point' is the middle ground. Their most rock album is still probably 'Give up but don't give out', which was slated upon it's release, and hasn't fared much better since.

For a newish bluesy-rock, have you heard the (sadly demised) 22-20's or The Blueskins? The 22-20's debut (& sadly only) release especially is worth a listen.


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Foxylady Dee
Posted: Jul 24 2006, 11:22 AM
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Oooh, 'bluesy-rock' is right up my street. Do you know much about this band you've mentioned?


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nobby88
Posted: Aug 11 2006, 11:32 AM
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QUOTE (nobby88 @ Jul 13 2006, 06:01 PM)
Of the original albums, 'Tomorrows heroes today', is an accessible start .


For a newish bluesy-rock, have you heard the (sadly demised) 22-20's or The Blueskins?  The 22-20's debut (& sadly only) release especially is worth a listen.

You may have trouble finding that album as I used the colloquial name, used by the fans, instead of the actual title, which is "And this is our music". rolleyes.gif

As for the bluesy stuff Dee, On the new Lynx ad (the one with the bloke in the bath towel), that's The Blueskins, and to be honest it's the standout track off their debut "Word of mouth".

As for the 22-20's, they also had a track in the ad's (The devil in me was used for the Vauxhall ad where the Bradley Walsh lookalike falls down the mountain). This however is probably one of the weaker tracks from the album. It is a real shame that they gave up during the 2nd album, citing different influences chaging their outlook, as although they weren't wonderfully original, they were a solid young band.


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nobby88
Posted: Aug 18 2006, 08:35 AM
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Anyone got any gigs lined up?

So far I've got Puressence 7/10
The Raconteurs 24/10
Jet 5/11
Flaming Lips 9/11
Primal Scream 13/11.

Still deciding on The Black Keys.

Would love to get to the Puressence gig in London in October or Brian Jonestown Massacre 26/11 at the Astoria, but unless it's a Saturday London is out for me.



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Eddy
Posted: Aug 18 2006, 09:35 AM
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I wish I had a a few. But I have a phobia about crowds so I just had to stop going.

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Foxylady Dee
Posted: Aug 18 2006, 02:31 PM
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Aww Nobby...can I come to the Raconteurs gig wit ya?????? tongue.gif sunny.gif

Eddy: if you won't come to a gig what about a coffee shop youngman??? It's time we met up!!!!!!!!!!!! biggrin.gif


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KingArthur
Posted: Aug 18 2006, 03:09 PM
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A lot of "gigs" in pubs are in fact more enjoyable. You really hear the music and see the band in action. Even watching an unknown local band can be far preferable in a small venue to watching "big names" going through the motions in a bigger arena.
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Foxylady Dee
Posted: Aug 21 2006, 03:49 PM
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I wouldn't say no to the Rolling Stones tho'!!!!!! Or The Who...or Roger Waters!


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nobby88
Posted: Aug 25 2006, 11:45 AM
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Just added Public Enemy & The Brian Jonestown Massacre (both in Wolverhampton) to the list.

Can't wait for either of them, although if you see reports of a thirtysomething white bloke having had the sh!t kicked out of him for being at Public Enemy, you'll now know who it is.

Bring the Noise!!


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Foxylady Dee
Posted: Aug 25 2006, 01:37 PM
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Nobby, I don't have ANY B.J.M music in my collection at all. Must try n find some trax...I'll ask my trusted friend Peet the Northern Git biggrin.gif when he returns from his travels oop bonnie Scotland. Public Enemy eh? They put out some good trax back in the 80s...wasn't it? Am sure they had a lotta white fans too? Didn't they????? Oooh, take care at the gig then, Nobs! unsure.gif


Oh, I've just noticed...I've attained 'refugee' status!


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nobby88
Posted: Aug 25 2006, 04:08 PM
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Congrats on the refugee status Dee applaud.gif (and it's not often you can say that).

I know PE have a lot of white fans, but my mate got done over on the Def Jam tour (88/89ish), just before their set and all he can remember during the kicking was his assailants shouting "you're white and you're not f***in' wanted here". I think a lot of that was due to the media at the time, hailing, quite rightfully, PE as a voice of the global black youth. Hopefully certain aspects of their live shows have moved on. Especially since I'm on my own at this one.




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nobby88
Posted: Oct 9 2006, 09:50 AM
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Puressence 7th Oct - Birmingham Bar Academy

As with Primal Scream, I will attempt to remain objective, as I'm a huge fan of this band.

Firstly the venue. Upstairs in a smallish bar (tied to the larger Academy, next door) it has the pub feel, but holds approx 400. By no means sold out, but there was a good atmosphere for the bands first gig in ny hometown, since 1998.

Support was provided by a Greek band who's name I did not catch. I've seen worse, but they were firmly entrenched in the school of Franz Ferdinand/Yeah Yeah Yeah's. The female vocalist was very much like Karen O, in both looks and delivery.

Puresssence came on around 9.40 (the delay due to the support having set-up troubles) and had to make up for lost time. They opened with 'Near Distance' followed by 'I suppose', two of the higher tempo tracks off their debut album. Unfortunately, a band that plays these small, pub-type venues will be subject to sound problems, and tonight was no exception. There was no bass in the mix for the first 3 tracks and then they had problems with the overall sound. Jimi Mudriczki's vocal is a huge plus for the band, a high-pitched vocal reminiscent which is Jeff Buckley-esque, as it soars over the melody but tonight it was distorted. Funnily enough, when matched with the lo-fi mixing of the guitars, it actually was quite effective and didn't spoil my enjoyment, but I think others weren't impressed. The bands 4th album is imminent (been saying that since 2002) and there was a fair smattering of new tunes in the set. Although they sounded great and gives hope that the band will not give it up, I can't see it being different enough to break them into the world of stardom. Their first album was 10 years ago, so they were riding the back of Britpop, which is evident in the anthemic nature of a lot of their tracks, but they were always the darker element of Britpop, either in the music or lyrically.

By 11.0pm they'd played most of the crowd favourites, except for 'Turn the lights out when I die', which I'd have paid the ticket price to for that track alone, and had pleased the crowd no end. Unfortunately the usual high provided by the playout track 'India', didn't happen tonight. The bad sound had caught up with them and it was really messy.

I hope they keep the faith and carry on, as 10 years (and 3 albums) in, they must be annoyed with still playing small boozers. Especially as they regularly sell out 2000+ halls in Greece, which hopefully is providing them with enough of a payday to continue. No one has ever worked out why the Greeks have taken to them in such a big way, bet we're happy they have, as it's probably what's kept them going, in the face of such apathy in the UK. Hopefully the release fo the 4th album will get them some exposure, but I'm not counting on it. Thye're still Manchester's best kept secret.


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Eddy
Posted: Oct 9 2006, 10:07 AM
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Nobby, thanks for the report.

Did the Greek band sing in Greek?

As for Puressence, I have no idea why they are so popular over there. I am surprised.
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nobby88
Posted: Oct 9 2006, 11:37 AM
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Hi Eddy

The support band sang in English. They had a White Stripes thing going on with their uniform (all in black & red) but other than that they weren't particularly noteworthy. The vocalist was decent, but the 'angular' guitars were too derivative, for me.

It was different to the stereotypical continental band, but could they make it over here? Very doubtful IMO, but they were well received, which was good to see.


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