With Just A Hint Of Mayhem

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

Apollo Festival 2014 – York – Saturday 21st June June 30, 2014


 

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Unfortunately I was unable to attend last years Apollo Festival so I was quite excited about this one. On another unfortunate note for various reasons I ended up having to miss the set from Reverend and the Makers who headlined the day. But I did get to see absolutely loads of great music and I do hope to be back next year. This time for the full day!

I spent the day with my wonderful wife Catherine (regular readers will know her as Catwoman and our good friends Caron and John and their beautiful daughter Amelia. Catwoman and me are Odd parents to Amelia. the first stage we visited was the Access To Music Stage. Ruby was playing when we arrived, she looked very young, but she was also very, very good. Her own material had some very mature lyrics for someone so young and she even made an Olly Murs song sound good when she covered “Troublemaker”. We stayed in place to see the next act; Laura. Does nobody bother with surnames any more? Laura has an excellent voice and some great songs of her own. She also played two well-chosen and extremely well done covers. The first was the Beatles “Blackbird” and she finished her set with a storming acoustic cover of the Gnarls Barkley modern classic “Crazy”.

 

We wandered over to the Main Stage next where we saw We Could Be Astronauts last song. It was a pity that we weren’t able to see more because these guys sound bloody good! Redstar from Huddersfield were next and it would be difficult to find any fault with this superb band. Their playing is on the button and really tight. The vocalist has all the traits of a great front man and he backs that up with a great rock voice. Their songs are pretty damned good too. I reckon there may be some Kasabianesque influences in there and they made me think of what Beady Eye could have been had Liam retained any talent. But that is small stuff, they are very much their own band. The free CD album they handed out to us punters is brilliant and has been on heavy rotation in my car since the show. Chris Helme former singer of John Squire‘s first post Stone Roses project the Seahorses was next. he is clearly a talented bloke with a good voice but I found him a little dull.

It was back to the Access To Music Stage next where we saw the fabulous Barcode Zebra. probably the funkiest band of the day. A truly stupendous rhythm section and a vocalist for whom a description of awesome might not be quite enough. They are playing in York at a launch of their new EP in July and sadly I will be away that weekend. I would definitely pay to see this band again. also if you’re reading this good people of Barcode Zebra I would love to do an interview with you for this blog!

The Entertainment Co Stage was our next port of call where we found it impossible not to dance and sing along to the curators of that stage; The Entertainment Company! They don’t just play cover versions they own them! Are they the best party band ever?  Very probably! shall we book them for Catwoman’s 50th birthday party (yes she doesn’t look even close to 50 does she)? I hope they do private party bookings because I’d love them to play for us in September 2016!

After that it was a return to the Main Stage where we saw the Black Delta Movement. We didn’t catch their whole set but they come across as very accomplished rockers with a swampy blues rock feel. Not bad at all. Former Bluetones frontman the ‘Legendary’ Mark Morriss was on next with a rather brilliant acoustic set. He is wonderfully self-deprecating and even his new songs have an air of classics about them.

Next it was a quick jog back to the Entertainment Co Stage where we were hoping to see the highly recommended And The Hangnails (thank you Mr Pattinson). before they took to the stage those wonderful people from the Entertainment Company had allowed a young singer from LA to play a few songs. His name is Ben Caron and he is soulful and funky. A bit like Bruno Mars but with more of an R & B edge. He has a truly great voice with which he wowed the all too small crowd. I bought his album, a steal at £7 and he struck me as a really good bloke too. You really should check him out. And The Hangails came on the stage and it is fair to say that for just two people they make a massive noise. I don’t mean that in a negative way either, this pair know how to rock. I sensed some influence from the likes of the White Stripes, the Black Keys and the Strokes. Would I pay to see this mighty duo again? Hell yeah!

Target By Numbers were next on the Access To Music Stage. Good musicians and some ok songs, but they really didn’t do it for me. The last band we saw on the day was the Supermodels on the Main Stage. They are a covers band, but to simply say that really doesn’t do them justice. They cover some classic rock songs with such verve and talent that you could almost imagine you were listening to the real thing if your eyes were shut. Their cover of the Who’s “Baba O’Riley” would give Daltrey and Townshend a run for their money. I really want to see them play again. Sadly we had to leave just before the Supermodels left the stage. But although we missed the headliners we had a fantastic day! well done to the organisers and for all the money raised for an excellent cause; the Smiley Riley Fund!

 

 

“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


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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.

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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.

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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.

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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!

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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!

 

“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.

 

“And now as tears subside I find it all so amusing” April 25, 2010


This one will be a bit of a random post, kind of the post with absolutely no theme whatsoever. Now there’s an idea, how about a future post all about TV and movie themes? Me likes that! 

First up is a great clip of Talcy Malcy’s funeral winding its way through London. Truly an entertainer to the very end. Cash from Chaos indeed (actually that sounds a bit banking industry related, only for them it was chaos from cash I suppose!) Click here to see my recent post on the death of Mr McLaren 

 

One of the songs played at Malcolm McLaren’s funeral was Sid Vicious’ version of the Paul Anka penned Frank Sinatra classic “My Way” Check it out below 

I would also like to remind you that you can still get an exclusive Steal The Smile track “Two Years On” from my recent post about this superb young band. Click here to go to that post and download the song. Trust me, you WILL NOT be disappointed! You can also click here to view some video footage of the STS boys (Henry, Johnny, Luke & Oli) hard at work and having plenty of fun in the studio. They also have another gig coming up in a couple of weeks at the FaceBar in Reading. I’ll be there, why don’t you get your arses down there too? Check out the boys playing the FaceBar from a couple of years back, with an excellent cover of Pendulum’s “Blood Sugar” 

OK I said this would be random and indeed it is. Do you have any idea what John Squire off of the Stone Roses and the Seahorses has been up to lately? Well he has been doing new designs for the covers of classic Penguin books. How rock ‘n’ Roll is that? Click here to see his handiwork. 

I think this looks just a teensy weensy bit like a stone rose, what do you think?

The Sunday Times has published a list of the richest young UK music stars, all under thirty. Joint top are Charlotte Church, Katherine Jenkins and Leona Lewis, all worth an alleged £11m each, followed by Katie Melua and Cheryl Cole, both worth a measly £10m each. Craig David is the highest placed man at a lowly 7th place with just a tiny £8m in the piggy bank, bo selecta indeed!  I wonder if the other girls off of Girls Aloud are envious of Cheryl being worth twice as much as each of them? Click here to read more. The full list is; 

1. Charlotte Church £11M
1. Katherine jenkins£11M
1. Leona Lewis £11M
4. Cheryl Cole £10M
4. Katie Melua £10M
6. Joss Stone £9M
7. Craig David £8M
8. Natasha Bedingfield £6M
9. Lily Allen £5M
9. Nadine Coyle £5M
9. Sarah Harding £5M
9. Nicola Roberts £5M
9. Kimberly Walsh £5M
9. Jamie Cullum £5M
9. Duffy £5M
9. James Morrison £5M
9. Paolo Nutini £5M
9. Amy Winehouse £5M  

 

 
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