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The Big Gig Thread 2019

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    Originally posted by RobW View Post
    Went to In Conversation with Nick Cave at the Barbican last week. Was a lot of cash, £85 but worth it I think for the intimate setting and the unique format. I don't know how much people paid to be sat on the stage with him, but none of them could ask any questions, or seemingly move from their spot to take a piss or go to the bar. He came on promptly at 8pm, sang 'God Is In The House' and then laid out how the evening would proceed. Basically he took five or six questions, and then would play a song or two in between. This was all based on his Red Hand Files in which he responds to fans emails every week (not every fan obviously).
    Some of the questions were serious, a man talking about dealing with heartbreak, others about grief. There were less serious questions about his working day, or what his favourite films were (Hunchbank of Notre Dame) and his heroes (Cohen, Dylan). He did a cover of 'Avalanche' and 'Cosmic Dancer' as well as standards like 'Mercy Seat' and 'Stagger Lee'. He was part healer, counsellor and stand-up. He shot back with short shrift if anyone was talking shite (there were a couple of people who were either very drunk, or just loved the sound of their own voice too much).

    Overall, it was nearly 3 hours of questions and answer, plus 15 songs.
    For Brighton my friends had what I expect was the top tier ticket (it was 85/65/45) and were given armbands which they thought was some meet and greet. Then they ended up on the stage - they had no idea.

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      Did they hear the guy whose question was "I live in your old flat, do you know where the stopcock is?"

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        I would of course, be being remiss if I didn't point out that over the weekend of 19-21 July it's both the Tramlines festival in Hillsborough Park, and the Tramlines Fringe at various venues in and around the city centre in Sheffield.

        Be there, or be a rectangular thrombus.

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          Thrombus.

          (Sheesh.)

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            Though I believe Rectangular Thrombus have declined the offer to appear as they have a subsequent engagement...

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              Me and daughter have just met Johnny Marr. He was a nice man, charming in fact.

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                Originally posted by Walt Flanagans Dog View Post
                Me and daughter have just met Johnny Marr. He was a nice man, charming in fact.
                Nice to hear that, I know more famous people are decent than are dickheads, I'm good that Johnny's one of the former.

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                  Have I been to any gigs this week? Can't remember. Have been to music things.

                  Anyway, Sink Ya Teeth, the female duo from Norwich who've been getting great reviews and played Paper Dress a few months back (Benjm was there, so was I) were down to play the Pohoda Festival in Slovakia last night. The headline act dropped out so they got to replace them, and play the main stage to around 30,000 rather than the 50 they're used to.

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                    Just a question, anyone seen a Belinda Carlisle gig recently? She's playing Dublin in October and I was wondering does she do any gogos stuff or just her solo songs? Thanks.

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                      Can't help on the Belinda Carlisle query but I'd be interested to know as I'd like to see her with a decent venue and set.

                      I went to see Jane Weaver at the Purcell Room in the Southbank Centre on Saturday. She was doing reworked versions of songs from her last two albums, The Silver Globe and Modern Kosmology. It had been billed as a solo thing but she had a guitarist, electronics person and a couple of synths herself so it was still a big sound rather than the John Lewis ad treatment. The songs were linked by ambient and instrumental passages that were enjoyable but slightly muted the atmosphere as people didn't know when to clap and cheer. In a 75 minute set, the noodling displaced a couple of strong songs from the albums. Overall, the full band show she did last year was more satisfying but this was still well worth a look. The venue is seated and the doors are at the front by the stage. About 40 minutes in the levees broke and people started heading to and from the loos in considerable numbers which could be annoying for the performers as it's much more noticeable than in a standing venue.

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                        Originally posted by Bordeaux Education View Post
                        Need to do a round-up of the genuinely big gigs that I have been to recently. Firstly, was the Manics in Bath for the first time in over 20 years - while they get rid of all the racism at the Colston Hall. They were doing one of the album anniversary gigs and, this year, it was "This is my truth....". The Manics go out with many more people than just the three of them nowadays but, even so, I was amazed that, with James, they had three guitarists. Of course, as it was explained to me, this is due to them recreating the whole album live for the first time and, along with "Everything Must Go", this is when they started doing much more layered albums hence the . Nicky Wire did forewarn that it was a quite introspective album so the first part of the gig would be quieter and so it was but it didn't suffer from that. Indeed, my mate, who I went to the Cardiff CIA gig with last year, much preferred this show. As is customary at these gigs, I had forgotten how many great songs there were on that album, SYMM and Back Dog being two of my favourites. After playing the album in full, they played all the 'hits' ❨including a cover of 'Umbrella'❩. I have to say that I love the Manics. They know that they are middle aged men paying the mortgage with these shows - that their younger selves would pour scorn on - but they still put a lot of effort and thought into them. Not only that but they have so many genuinely excellent songs, not least from recent albums that I really must catch up with. James remains one of the best guitarists and vocalists around and Nicky Wire has quietly turned into a very good bass player in the last decade or so although he is less energetic than he was - but aren't we all.

                        The next one up was Van Morrison one at the Bath Festival at the Rec. Not much to add to the review-ette that I did in the Dr John thread, only to say that, at the time, I thought it was the most middle class middle aged gig I had been to since one of those 'Smoked and Uncut' gigs a few years ago which was all gin and prosecco bars and organic burger stalls. However, it was to be beaten. A word on the support bands though - firstly, the Hothouse Flowers came onto to a extended jammed version of "I can see clearly now...." which was either ironic or badly planned as it pissed down all day. The fact that the singer had a white suit on suggested the latter. The support bands did do a little masterclass on what to do with your hits if they are meagre. HH started with the aforementioned cover and then played the hit at the end. Corrine Bailey Rae started the set with one of her hits and finished with the other one.

                        This week, I did a sort of double bill of differing Stereophonics related gigs. Now, straight off, I have to say that I fell out of love with the Stereos a long time ago. I loved the first album. which I thought was a sort of Welsh version of Stiff Little Fingers at their most social commentative. I liked the second album but could already see them moving into a stadium rock vibe. They lost me with the third album ‑ Black Crowes stylings aside - and then I went to a gig at the Millennium Stadium where they played all the songs in chronological order and I realised that I was losing interest as the gig went on and sort of left them there. Of course, they don't give a shit what I think, have gone from strength to strength and have an army of very very dedicated fans - like the Manics, especially in Wales.

                        While the gigs this week didn't quite win me over, they did show me that the reason they are still as successful at what they are doing is because they are very very good at what they do, even if that isn't quite up my street anymore. The first was a Kelly Jones solo show at the Forum in Bath which is a fairly intimate - for him, I expect - 1500+ theatre, indeed, the same one as the Manics played. When he came on initially just with an acoustic guitar, I noticed that there was two pianos, a percussion kit as well as a normal kit, trumpets as well as, what I assumed were, amps for a bass player and a second guitarist which seemed like a massive band for a solo show. As it was, there were only three other musicians who cleverly switched instruments to provide the necessary songs - a violin player who doubled up on piano, the drummer who also provided percussion and a second guitarist who, incredibly, also provided bass, trumpet and piano as necessary. Kelly also played bass on a song. To be honest, I am not enough of a Stereophonics fan to know which were the solo songs and which weren't and I don't think that there is a huge stylistic difference. While not being the most active of performers, Kelly is an excellent guitarist with a great voice - albeit it can be a bit same after a long set ❨this was two and a half hours❩, a very accomplished songwriter and an engaging raconteur in between songs - especially in this environment. He did a couple of interesting covers of Kris Kristofferson's "Help Me Make It Through the Night" and Tom Petty's "Stop dragging my heart around" which show where he and the Stereos place themselves nowadays. For all my reservations, I did think it was an interesting engaging night and I had 'Hurry Up and Wait" in my head for days after. I know that 'catchy' doesn't neccesarily equal good but it is a testament to something, I think. Not only that but my Sterophonics-loving friends were over the moon and gushing about the majority of songs so, again, he knows exactly what he is doing.

                        The second gig was the Barbourfest that was the Sterophonics' gig at Westonbirt Arboretum which made the Van Morrison gig look like Altamont. Actually, Bath Organic Farms didn't have a stall at the former so I may be wrong. Fortunately for us, the June monsoon stopped just before they came on but the crowd were Hunter-wellied up anyway. Aside from the slight reservations that I mentioned about me not really getting the Sterophonics anymore, my only other gripe is that the Stereophonics have quite the worst audiences going. As I say, they seem to be very very loyal and committed to the band but, upon the band - in whatever form - starting to play, they then decide to just carry on having fucking inane conversations for the majority of the gig. if they aren't doing that, they are viewing the gig almost exclusively through their smartphones ❨which, I appreciate, may be a more widespread modern phenomenon❩. Obviously, the Westonbirt gig could be seen as attracting a particular sort of event tourist but the solo Kelly gig was even worse. This is possibly due to the more intimate venue and quieter songs but, also, at that gig, there was a fight in the audience - apparently as one woman was talking too loudly and too drunken exception to being upbraided about it. To be honest, in both gigs, I could lamped a fair few gobby bastards. At least, in the full show, th band were loud enough to drown out the gossiping.


                        Anyway, back to the gig, it was, of course, a stadium rock show through and though and the Stereos are now experts at these. They did all the hits with crowd participation, drum solos and a posing walkway into the crowd. I actually realised that the Stereos remind me very much Foo Fighters - albeit with better songs on the whole. They know exactly what buttons to press to please their audience and invite in the casual listener/viewer. For me, the Stereos lack the edginess and experimentation that even the Manics still have in the same way as the Foo Fighters lack the same qualities that Queens Of The Stone Age have. However, I would be amazed if anyone went home with any complaints and, if they did, they didn't have a clue what the band were about. Of course, being super critical, I have to point out one point that rubbed me up the wrong way. The band situated themselves in a rather cramped fashion on the end of the walkway in the middle of the crowd and announced that they were going to do a couple of songs in a space "like when we used to play the pubs". As someone who still plays pubs that are that cramped, I though it was ridiculously patronising as pretty much all bands in the same position would love to have a massive stage with lights show and walkways. However, of course, I was in the minority of one as everyone around me loved it when they did it. Another point was that the Stereos nowadays have another guitarist who seems to adore Slash and does all the rock star moves and solos which was pretty funny but, to me, he wasn't anywhere near as good a guitarist as Kelly. Having said that, he did create a major visual and musical difference between the Stereos and Kelly's solo band to the relatively ignorant viewer/listener i.e. me. Anyway, they finished with "Bartender and the Thief", "Local Boy...." and "A Thousand Trees" which was a nicely nostalgic end for me. I have realised that I have been quite snippy here but, again, must reiterate that I was really in a minority with any criticism and even I was quite happy to watch them for the whole set and, again, they really are very very good at what they do. Anyway, back to the small gigs again for me....
                        Just to say I have no issues with this dissection of the Phonics. And am cheered that another person objects to the presence of gig twats at gigs.

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                          I think a lot of us have moaned about gig wankers before? I know I have.

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                            Indeed. I was looking at that Sink Ya Teeth festival story and thinking that if nothing else the gig in a field wankers would be further back than at the indoor variety at Paper Dress Vintage.

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                              Yes, those bastards drowned them out at PDV.

                              Here's the festival story on the BBC site:
                              https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-englan...KV6hbsOO6vgeog

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                                Thinking further about Bored's post, the Stereophonics rose in my estimation when I discovered a cover of a Tragically Hip song on one of their early CD singles. It might have been Bartender & the Thief.

                                Also I think its no accident that they went stadium rock after the late Stuart Cable left the group. I think he kept Kelly and the other one more grounded. Dakota is a great song, mind.

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                                  I'm not sure if "went stadium rock" means literally playing in stadia/large outdoor venues - because they did plenty of that while Stuart was in the band (Morfa, Millennium, Donington and more) - or is some kind of genre description. If it is the latter then I would say the run of albums two to four that he played on were probably the band's most "stadium rock" era.

                                  Either way, as the most old school rockist of the three original members (by the end of his time with the band he had the whole full on seventies double bass drum kit and a fucking huge gong) he heartily endorsed both the big gigs and the big sound they played before he was sacked from the band.
                                  Last edited by Ray de Galles; 17-07-2019, 11:21.

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                                    Went to see The Skatelites last night, they've been 55 years on the road and since all but one of the original line up have died, people might say that they are just a tribute band now,but it's the one survivor who makes all the difference.
                                    Doreen Shaeffer is in her late seventies now (She doesn't know her exact age) but she still has the voice and energy of someone half her age. The venue was packed and enthusiastic, no yapping gig wankers nearby and I got through the night without being soaked in Heineken for once, so a definite good night out.

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                                      Saw No Vacation at Paradiso in Amsterdam last night. Played in the small room, which was almost full. They were better than expected but when their music builds, would have preferred that it takes off rather than drops back down to the bass line. Nice riffs, melodies and dreamy vocals on certain tracks, and a bit too busy on others with each instrument drowning the other out. Big Cranberries fans apparently. Played a cover from Everybody Else is Doing It... but I didn't recognise it, despite knowing that album quite well. Too much chat between songs, most of which was cringeworthy and inane. Seemed like pleasant young people.Geeky as fuck, though.

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                                        Originally posted by Ray de Galles View Post
                                        I'm not sure if "went stadium rock" means literally playing in stadia/large outdoor venues - because they did plenty of that while Stuart was in the band (Morfa, Millennium, Donington and more) - or is some kind of genre description. If it is the latter then I would say the run of albums two to four that he played on were probably the band's most "stadium rock" era.

                                        Either way, as the most old school rockist of the three original members (by the end of his time with the band he had the whole full on seventies double bass drum kit and a fucking huge gong) he heartily endorsed both the big gigs and the big sound they played before he was sacked from the band.
                                        I feel there's a difference between playing rock in a stadium and writing rock songs knowing you'll be playing them in a stadium. Same thing happened with U2. Less energy more melody. That's more what I meant.

                                        I always got the sense Stuart was excited to be in a band.

                                        I felt sad when he died.
                                        Last edited by Patrick Thistle; 18-07-2019, 11:20.

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                                          I'm going to see Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever (never heard a note, but my mate has a spare ticket) in Bedford tonight and Advance Base (formerly Casiotone For The Painfully Alone) supported by synthpop queen Alice Hubble in Bethnal Green on Monday.

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                                            New Order were in great form in Bristol on Thursday. The harbourside setting wasn't too enormous for an outdoor show and a window of decent weather saw them take the stage in front of blue skies and play through sunset into darkness. Bernard Sumner was in a very genial mood, even by his upbeat recent standards. The set featured five Joy Division songs, four from Music Complete and the usual hits and fan favourites, all performed with aplomb with a top notch light show and arty video footage for each number.

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                                              Originally posted by MsD View Post
                                              Anyway, Sink Ya Teeth, the female duo from Norwich who've been getting great reviews and played Paper Dress a few months back (Benjm was there, so was I) were down to play the Pohoda Festival in Slovakia last night. The headline act dropped out so they got to replace them, and play the main stage to around 30,000 rather than the 50 they're used to.
                                              Ah, thatís good. I really like If You See Me.

                                              I couldnít go, but for some reason Sink Ya Teeth played a show near me supporting The Wedding Present just recently, which seems a very peculiar combination.

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                                                Originally posted by Furtho View Post
                                                ...for some reason Sink Ya Teeth played a show near me supporting The Wedding Present just recently, which seems a very peculiar combination.
                                                Yes, they regularly support A Certain Ratio, which is a much more obvious/sympathetic pairing.

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