With Just A Hint Of Mayhem

Music trivia, useless info, extra added random stuff and the odd rant from me

Live At Worthy Farm – Saturday 22nd May 2021 June 3, 2021


I suppose this is a review of sorts, I mean I watched it “as live”, and that for me is the crux of the issue, not actually live, but “as live”. Maybe it should have been called ‘As Live At Worthy Farm’ On a positive note the lowering of some Covid restrictions meant that I was able to watch it with five mates round at my gaff 🙂 So thank you Simon, John, Paul, Pete and Rusty for helping to make it a great night! Maybe it was luck but we did not suffer any of the technical difficulties that thousands of other paying punters did. I am not sure who put the whole show together, but on paper the line up looked good and I love the way the sky got darker as the night went on.

The whole thing was kicked off with a blistering set from what seemed like a really fired up and ready for it Wolf Alice. They appeared to give it their all in the stone circle, despite the lack of a roaring crowd. “Don’t Delete The Kisses” was an incredibly powerful way to open the whole show. Meanwhile “The Last Man On Earth” was truly epic and suggests that the new album will be ace. The incredibly talented Michael Kiwanuka followed and his set was funky, jazzy and majestically soulful. Particular highlights were set openers “You Ain’t The Problem” and “Rolling” from his incredibly classy third album ‘Kiwanuka’ from 2019. Next to enter the Glasto site was George Ezra in very stripped back way, just him and a guitar walking around playing and singing, like a mobile busker. He played a few songs next to a raging fire and we thought maybe he was going to be sacrificed in a Wicker Man style, but don’t worry Ezra fans, he wasn’t! IDLES were bombastic and frankly hotter then Ezra’s fire. One of the few acts on the night to attack this vile UK government, “Reigns” is a great protest song. “Kill Them With Kindness” was another highlight for me. Their incendiary set was like a mini best of from their three albums to date. As a footnote it looked like they were playing in a warehouse full of strange junk, in fact it was filmed at Joe Rush’s “Carhenge” workshop!

HAIM were next and another of my highlights, the three sisters rocked the hell out of the Stone Circle. “Summer Girl” and “I Know Alone” were particular favourites of mine. When I have seen them in the past I was always mesmerised by the gurning antics of Este Haim, which sadly were not really evident in this performance. The next band, for me, are a bit Marmite, in that people seem to either love them or hate them, yes I am talking about Coldplay. personally I thought their first couple of albums were good, but they seem to have become a bit identikit and boring musically. Although they have great Glasto credentials, having headlined four times so far. They were filmed in front of the iconic Pyramid Stage, or at least a skeleton of it, with a stunningly good light show. The old songs were the winners for me, “Clocks”, “The Scientist” and especially “Fix You”. Next was Damon Albarn, an artist I really like, however I felt this set was a little self indulgent, although a long way from terrible. The crowd at my house went moderately wild in a socially distanced stylee when he played a couple of Blur songs, “Out Of Time” and “This Is A Low”. His set was a little underwhelming, however the thing that captivated us was the new Barnet sported by Mr Albarn, he has a mullet! Yes, seriously, a mullet! Damon, sort yourself out!

Rate My Mullet!

Jorja Smith is only 23 and yet her music has a beautiful maturity, she is a supremely talented singer songwriter with a fantastic voice. I love her ‘Be Right Back’ EP which came out in May. Her first big UK hit was “Blue Lights” and she opened her set with a powerhouse version of it. The Smile were the special guests and if you have not heard about them yet you really do need to crawl out from under your rock and scrub the moss off. Smile is Jonny Greenwood and Thom Yorke of Radiohead aided and abetted by Nigel Godrich and Sons of Kemet drummer Tom Skinner. Skinner’s jazz background perhaps carried the most influence on the music, which showcased that Radiohead can do pop, especially synth pop with a huge dollop of prog. I really hope the Smile record and release an album, it will be worth it for “We Don’t Know What Tomorrow Brings” a synth pop banger that the likes of Depeche Mode would salivate over. But the most outstanding tune for me was “You Will Never Work In Television Again” which is full to the brim of great melodies and hooks. They even managed to fit in an unreleased Radiohead tune, “Skating on the Surface”. The Smile pretty much capped the evening for me, plus I had consumed a hell of a lot of wine by then. So I don’t recall too much about Kano’s set (humble apologies to Kane Brett Robinson a.k.a. Kano). I do remember marvelling at how fast this guy can rap, he spits his words at almost superhuman speed! The whole event was closed by a, so I am told, marvellous DJ set from DJ Honey Dijon featuring Róisín Murphy. Sadly the wine had really done for me by then! I should also give a shout out to all the artists and poets who provided spoken word interludes PJ Harvey, Jarvis Cocker, Kae Tempest, Kurupt FM, Little Amal and Mr Glastonbury himself, Michael Eavis.

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Hurray For The Riff Raff – The Crescent, York – Tuesday 15th August August 15, 2017


Having really loved Hurray For The Riff Raff‘s album ‘The Navigator’ on first hearing it earlier this year I was hoping to get the chance to see them live. Well that chance came around at a fabulous little venue, the Crescent, in my adopted home city of York. Were Hurray For The Riff Raff good? Well you will just have to read on to find out, but first let me tell you about the rather splendid support act, Alex Golisti. He played a great acoustic set including some of his own songs, one of which was an old banjo tune that he played on the guitar and had written his own lyrics for. He has a voice that at times shows similarities with both Tom Waits and George Ezra. He plays a style that evokes bluegrass and roots music with a modern twist. On top of all that he has a great self-deprecating sense of humour.

I was accompanied by my beautiful wife Catherine a.k.a. Catwoman this evening as she enjoyed ‘The navigator’ too. We were both very excited to be here and from the opening salvo of “Life To Save” and “Nothing’s Gonna Change That Girl” we were not disappointed. The energy shown by Alynda Lee Segarra and indeed the whole band never let up for the whole night. There were plenty of highlights notably for me the haunting rendition of “Fourteen Floors” with Alynda on keyboard. Then just when you think it couldn’t get better the band hit us with one of Segarra’s excellent protest songs, “Pa’ lante”. It has vision, power, heart, soul, deep emotion and an uplifting message. I understand that it is Spanish slang and that it means to “go ahead” or “go for it”. Alynda is very proud of her Puerto Rican roots and that shows on the current album and in her stage performance. The encore included a rousing cover of Springsteen’s “Dancing In The Dark” which had absolutely everyone on their feet. This is a band on top form and one who were really enjoying themselves. I will definitely be seeing them again! This was another great show from Please Please You, thank you Joe Coates.

 

BBC Music Awards 2014 – December 11th 2014 December 11, 2014


Awards-Logo640December 11th 2014 saw the first ever BBC Music Awards. The show was broadcast live from Earls Court in London. Whilst there were only four awards there were plenty of live acts including; Coldplay (Stunning), Labrinth with Ella Henderson (Class), Clean Bandit (is there anyone that doesn’t love them?), Gregory Porter (why does he wear that balaclava?), George Ezra (a proper Buddha Pest), Wand Erection (whisper this, but I thought that they were alright!), Ed Sheeran (how can one man with a guitar be that bloody good?), Calvin Harris (super Scot) with John Newman (voice of the year and pearly king) and Ellie Goulding (sublime disco), Catfish and the Bottlemen (best newcomers and 70s fashion aficionados), Paloma Faith (quirky and wonderful), Take That (now known as Taxdodge That), Will.i.am (a bit Bollywood Disco, not a bad song, still.a.twat) with Cody Wise (better.than.will.i.am)

bbc musicThe first award was for Best International Artist. Chris Evans who co-hosted the show with Fearne Cotton picked a young Welsh lass from the audience to announce the winner, which was Pharrell Williams. He was presented with his award live in LA by Gwen Stefani.

pharrell-williams-grammy-hat-has-a-hip-hop-historyIdris Elba presented the award for Song Of The Year and guess what? There was another trip to LA for Gwen Stefani to present yet another award to Pharrell Williams. This time for the stupendous “Happy”.

CF1-e1386329747254The BBC Introducing Award for Best Newcomer went to Catfish And The Bottlemen. A good choice methinks. I am really keen to see them play live now. The award was presented by Fearne Cotton after they played live.

Ed SheeranFuck me, Bowie was nominated for Best British artist but sadly he didn’t win it. Tom Jones presented the award to Ed Sheeran. I was surprised that Pharrell hadn’t been quickly given British citizenship. But then Sheeran’s “Sing” was a collaboration with Pharrell though.

Was this a better show than the Brits? Probably, but they need more awards. Also I thought Paloma Faith and Tom Jones finale had so much promise until they strangled “God Only Knows”. Was that as bad a cover of the song as David Bowie’s version in the 80s? Probably!

 

 
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