With Just A Hint Of Mayhem

Music reviews, gig reviews, fun trivia and extra added random stuff!

“I don’t need to sell my soul, he’s already in me” December 30, 2013

BbswjVuIEAAwAqUHave you ever thought about having a garden gnome on display at your home but then thought that you were too cool to do it? Well think again, especially if you are a fan of a Manchester band that you may have heard a little about. Yes folks you can now buy a full set of Gnome Roses who look remarkably like the Stone Roses. You could create your very own Spike Island next to your garden pond. Check out the Gnome Roses on Facebook and purchase them here at Alternative Merchandise. If you have already bought yours or received them for Christmas feel free to send me a picture and I will definitely give you a mention on this blog!

JS30467290-2953621Creator of these little gems is Andrew McDermid and he has ideas to expand the range, starting with the Ra-Gnomes with the advertising strap line of ‘Hi Ho Let’s Go!’. He also plans to work on the Rolling Gnomes, Kurt Cobain and Queens Of The Gnome Age. What? No Bowie as “The Laughing Gnome“?


The Stone Roses : Made Of Stone – World premiere simulcast York City Screen Thursday 30th May 2013 June 2, 2013


On Thursday 30th May I attended a simulcast of the world première of the new Stones Roses documentary ‘Made Of Stone’ at York City Screen. The cinema is part of the excellent Picturehouse chain and was one of 200 UK cinemas that were broadcasting the première which took place in Manchester. There was a live link to the activities on the red carpet for the first hour and personally I found that part terribly dull, not helped in my opinion by Edith Bowman‘s interview style. She seems to ask a high percentage of closed questions. The most interesting interview she did was with Shane Meadows, the director of the film. The interview with Mick Jones off of the Clash was embarrassing in my opinion.

television craft awards 080511

The film however was a million light years from being dull. I would say that it is probably among the best music documentaries I have ever seen. It didn’t set out to tell a chronological story of the band, although some of the montages which included previously unseen footage were excellent. Much of that material was provided by the band themselves directly to Shane Meadows. This included some grainy Super 8 ciné film of Ian Brown and John  Squire on motor scooters from the early 80s. The film is essentially split into three parts; The resurrection press conference and the Parr Hall in Warrington free show; Then the rehearsals and finally some stunning footage from the Heaton Park gigs.


I really loved the rehearsal element. It showed just how close the band really are and it was incredibly intimate and insightful. Apparently some of the rehearsal footage was shot by Shane Meadows using a Super 8 App on his iPhone. Does that mean we’ll all be making films soon? The filming and editing of the Parr Hall show and the build up to it was wonderfully entertaining. Especially the sequences of the people queueing up to be among the lucky 1,000 attendees. I order to get a wrist band for the gig you needed to bring along some official Stone Roses merchandise or CD/ Records and obviously to be in the first 1,000 people in the queue. One bloke arrived still in his paint spattered overalls having not even bothered to lock up the house he had been working on.


The finale of the film is truly amazing and culminates in some superb footage from the Heaton Park gigs. There must have been countless cameras used and I hope that the video includes much more footage of the shows. Some clips of the pre Heaton Park warm up shows were shown leading up to the big gig. You saw the band back stage in Lyon meeting one of their Manchester United (or Mani United) heroes; Eric Cantona. Is it just me or does he look like Grizzly Adams these days? I’m sure that Liam Gallagher, who made a brief appearance in the film wouldn’t have liked that part. The classic non encore from the Amsterdam is also included. This was where Reni threw a bit of a hissy fit following some problems with his ear monitors and went straight back to the hotel. Ian Brown then had to come back on the stage and announce to the disgruntled audience that this was no joke and that the drummer had gone home. This culminated in the classic line ‘What can I say? The drummer’s a cunt!’ To be fair that is a little rich coming from a soon to be middle-aged man who wears his jeans low enough to see most of his undercrackers!

Stone Roses Live_1

The posters and trailers for the film include the line ‘this film will make grown men cry’. Well I didn’t cry, but perhaps it’s just because it’s not my generation and not ‘my’ band in the way it is for the hardcore Roses fans. But even with my eyes remaining dry this was a five-star music documentary. I urge you to go and see it if you can or put the DVD (scheduled for release in October) on your letter to Santa Claus. But you know the drill by now; if you have to sell your Granny to get a ticket then say bye bye Gran today!


“You’re not down with who I am, look at you now, you’re all in my hands tonight” March 10, 2012

A white parka? Seriously?

XFM listeners recently took part in a poll to name the greatest front man of all time. So many great blokes to choose from and they went for Liam Gallagher. Now don’t get me wrong Liam has been very good in the past, particularly in the early days of Oasis, but the greatest front man of all time? I don’t think so. The full top 20 was;

1. Liam Gallagher
2. Freddie Mercury
3. Dave Gahan
4. Dave Grohl
5. Matt Bellamy
6. Brandon Flowers
7. Morrissey
8. Jim Morrison
9. Kurt Cobain
10. Alex Turner
11. Paul Weller
12. Mick Jagger
13. Tom Meighan
14. Eddie Vedder
15. Joe Strummer
16. Ian Curtis
17. Caleb Followill
18. Ian Brown
19. Thom Yorke
20. Chris Martin

A white double-breasted jacket? Seriously?

I agree with many of these, but I am surprised Robert Plant and John Lydon didn’t make the cut. Who do you think should have been included? Click here to read the report on nme.com.

Liam wasn't very happy with his dental work


“I couldn’t ever bring myself to hate you as I’d like” October 18, 2011

Finally after all the speculation of the last week or so the music world’s worst kept secret is official. The Stone Roses are back together for two shows in Manchester next summer and an ‘extensive’ world tour. I really hope they’ll be one of next years Reading and Leeds headliners as well. It was pretty obvious from the moment the press conference was announced that this was on the cards wasn’t it? But it’s still a pleasant surprise given the animosity there appeared to be between them (particularly Ian Brown and John Squire) at times.

Apparently there will also be some new music from the band. I’m really looking forward to that, I always felt that their demise meant that they had plenty of unfinished business musically. It’s also been speculated that Ian Brown’s expensive divorce is another reason for the band getting back together, or at least for him agreeing to it. Sadly I didn’t have a Stone Roses to reform to pay for mine.

Read about the band’s announcement at their press conference today on NME.com by clicking here.


Reading Festival Day 2 – Saturday 29th August 2009 August 30, 2009

Hello once again dear readers and here is the second of a series of three bulletins from the muddy trenches at the front line of the Reading Festival. Actually I lied about the mud it’s more like a dust bowl. In fact the dust kicked up by the mosh circles on Saturday were kicking up more output than the smoke machines on the main stage. Unlike yesterday today was more of a Main Stage day for us.

We arrived just in time to see the whole of the Eagles Of Death Metal’s set. OK death metal they’re not, but fantastic full on rock band they are. These guys know how to party and party we did! well we bounced up and down a lot anyway. The video screens showed Dave Grohl off of the Foo Fighters and Nirvana backstage with his daughter, she’s clearly not ready for fame yet as she covered her eyes the whole time, a real sweetie though 🙂 Josh Homme off of Queens Of The Stone Age was also in the backstage crowd

Next up was the excellent Enter Shikari and like the EODM these guys know how to party, I will go so far as to say that I thought they were among the top 10 bands I have ever seen at Reading and I have been going a looooooong while! We then took a short but offensive break in the comedy tent with Gary Delaney and Doug Stanhope. These guys, particularly Doug, know how to take things right to the edge! Bloody funny indeed! After this we returned to the Main Stage for Ian Brown and for me he was without doubt the biggest disappointment of the day. He really didn’t seem quite with it and sounded out of tune much of the time.

After Ian Brown things could only get better and we headed to the BBC Introducing stage to see the stupendous Soft Toy Emergency. Regular readers will know that I have seen this band before and today, once again they were truly on fire. This will be a very big band indeed and if they’re not on the NME Radio Stage next year I will eat two of the festivals foot long frankfurters!

To fill time before I next visit to the Main Stage we wandered over to the Festival Republic tent and chanced upon a truly excellent instrumental band, 65 Days Of Static. I must confess that I had never heard of them before, but check them out I’m sure that you’ll love them! So back to the Main Stage, the crowd for the Prodigy was so vast that at one point I was facing away from the stage and had to wait for a crowd surge before I could turn around. The band were easily up to their usual high standards though, Firestarter was a massive favourite with the crowd. How could anyone follow them? Well the Arctic Monkeys tried, but for me whilst they have great songs and play really well there is no real personality there. So we left about half way through their set and caught the last part of the Gossip in the NME Radio 1 tent. Absolutely brilliant, Beth Ditto was on great form. Standing In The Way Of Control blew the roof off and she even came back on at the end with a towel on her head for a short sing along of Queen’s We Are The Champions!

Gotta go now and get ready for Day 3, so until the next time folks!


“We don’t care about no government warning” February 28, 2009

hello everybody, well I have some interesting news on our recent ‘Lily Allen Naked’ experiment. As you may recall we were trying to see whether anyone would arrive at the blog using ‘Lily Allen Naked’ as a search term. It seems that there are millions of sites allegedly offering pictures of Lily in the buff. So the experiment didn’t work, but strangely enough, there was a search term used Thursday which led someone to my blog. Don’t worry guys it doesn’t tell me who it was but I’ll guess it was Tom or Jes. The search term was ‘Chris Allen naked’ Does anyone know who Chris Allen is? I certainly don’t, there are plenty of Chris Allens that show up when you Google the name but I don’t know which one someone wanted to see naked. So any insights from you dear readers will be much appreciated.

Anyway if you have arrived at this blog with a desperate desire to view the talented Miss Allen naked, just so you’re not too disappointed here is Lily…….errr…… in the pink!

we'll drink a drink a drink to Lily in pink in pink in pink!

we'll drink a drink a drink to Lily in pink in pink in pink!

And as a special bonus here is Lily with “The Fear“. Check out her new album too, it is rather good!

Another piece of hot news (well perhaps just lukewarm by the time that you read it) Damon Albarn has confirmed that Blur will be headlining one night at Glastonbury this year. I’ve seen them live twice and they were great both times although so much better with Graham Coxon. It’s great to see Mr C back in the fold.

Graham really hoped the photoshoot would be over soon, he was busting for a pee.

Graham really hoped the photoshoot would be over soon, he was busting for a pee.

Anyway lets’ get back to todays trivia megamix starting with the birthdays. First of those is Cindy Wilson from the B-52’s who was born on 28th February 1957 and is 52 today. Cindy was born in Athens, Georgia in the US, this fact fans is also where REM came from. Cindy’s older brother Ricky is also in the band. I guess most people assume that the band named themselves after the B-52 bomber (like U2 naming themselves after the U2 spy plane). However this is not the case, B-52 was also the nickname in the southern states for the ‘Beehive‘ hairdo and Cindy and Kate Pierson of the band sported that style of hair. But I suppose as the hairstyle is named after the nose of the plane they were indirectly named after the plane after all! Incidentally the bands hairstylist La-Verne was even among the credits on their first eponymously titled first album in 1979. Cindy left the band in 1992 (although she rejoined in 1998) and for their US tour that year was replaced by Julee Cruise (whose biggest hit was the theme to the stupendous ‘Twin Peaks’ TV series from David Lynch). Although somewhat strangely for a one off fundraiser for the Democrat presidential candidate Jerry Brown Cindy’s place was taken by Kim Basinger. As a reminder of just how good they were (indeed still are) here are the B-52’s with “Rock Lobster

Cindy and Kate thought they'd been stung by their hairdresser, $50 and nowhere near as high as Marge Simpsons hair

Cindy and Kate thought they'd been stung by their hairdresser, $50 and nowhere near as high as Marge Simpsons hair

The last of the birthdays is that of King Monkey Ian Brown, former front man of the Stone Roses and now a very talented solo star. Ian is 46 today. He is just a few months younger than Roses guitarist John Squire and they were brought up just a couple of doors apart and went to Altrincham Grammar School together. They had been called ‘English Rose’ after a track on the Jam’s ‘Setting Sons’ album. They were booked for some Swedish gigs after Brown befriended a Swedish promoter while hitching around Europe and wanted a new name. Apparently they considered the name ‘Angry Young Teddy Bears’ before settling on the ‘Stone Roses’ a combination of their previous name and part of the name of one of their favourite bands the Rolling Stones. Somehow I don’t think their acclaimed status would have been the same had they adopted the ‘Angry Young Teddy Bears’ moniker. What do you think? While you’re pondering that one here are the boys with “I Wanna Be Adored

The Angry Young Teddy Bears all received Painting By Numbers sets that Christmas. What a load of Pollocks!

The Angry Young Teddy Bears all received Painting By Numbers sets that Christmas. What a load of Pollocks!

On this day in 1968 Frankie Lymon was found dead at his mothers house of a suspected drugs overdose. He was just 25. As the lead singer with ‘Frankie Lymon and the Teenagers’ he became the youngest UK chart topper in 1957 aged just 13, when they reached the summit “Why Do Fools Fall In Love” He then became the youngest headliner at the London Palladium in 1958 aged just 14 while promoting their UK hit (which I believe failed to chart in the US) “I’m Not A Juvenile Delinquent“. Frankie retained the youngest UK chart topper record until 1972 when ‘Little’ Jimmy Osmond went to number one with the dreadful “Long Haired Lover From Liverpool” aged 9.

Frankie and the boys were looking forward to their appearance on Sesame Street to teach everyone about the letter 'T'

Frankie and the boys were looking forward to their appearance on Sesame Street to teach everyone about the letter 'T'

On this day in 1970 Led Zeppelin played a gig as the Nobs in Copenhagen after Eva Von Zeppelin, a relative of the Airship designer Ferdinand Von Zeppelin threatened to sue if the family name was used in Denmark. Later that same year Led Zep were voted Best Group in the New Musical Express (NME) readers poll, which broke a run of eight successive wins for the Beatles.

the hotel hairdryer was never strong enough for those Led boys

the hotel hairdryer was never strong enough for those Led boys

This day in 1998 saw ‘Cornershop’ sitting at the top of the UK singles chart with the excellent ‘Fatboy Slim’ remix of their superb song “Brimful Of Asha“. the Fatboy loved the song so much that he did the remix for free. The Asha in the song’s title is Asha Bhosle a Bollywood Playback singer. Indian films have relied heavily on song-and-dance numbers attributable to Broadway musicals. Almost always, the singing was performed by background singers while the actors and actresses mimed. Bhosle has sung more than 12.000 of these songs. Two other Playback singers, Lata Mangeshkar (Asha Bhosle’s sister) and Mohammed Rafi are also name-checked in the lyrics.

Once again Tjinder had fallen asleep at the mic

Once again Tjinder had fallen asleep at the mic

The next two aren’t strictly ‘onthisdays’ for February 28th, but it’s not a leap year so here are a couple from 29th February. Firstly on 29th February 1980 the glasses that Buddy Holly had been wearing when he died were discovered in a police file in Iowa where they had been for 21 years. The Beatles name is in part an homage to Buddy Holly and the Crickets and in one of lifes full circles Paul McCartney now owns the publishing rights to Buddy’s song catalogue.

The Invisible Man felt stupid for getting himself stuck in the Hall of Mirrors at the Fun Fair

The Invisible Man felt stupid for getting himself stuck in the Hall of Mirrors at the Fun Fair

Also on 29th February 2000 Eric Clapton received a 6 month driving ban in the UK for driving at 45mph in a 30 mph zone. So not such much of a slowhand after all are you Mr C? What’s your favourite Clapton song? This is mine, it’s “Layla” from his days as Derek and the Dominoes, although I really don’t like the unplugged version of it. Contrary to popular belief the signature guitar riff on that song came from Duane Allman and not Mr Clapton.

Eric was pleased that he had a friend like JJ to help him get to his gigs while he was banned from driving

Eric was pleased that he had a friend like JJ to help him get to his gigs while he was banned from driving

So dear reader if you have read this far, you have reached the end of todays post and I salute you! 🙂


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