With Just A Hint Of Mayhem

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

Reading Festival 2011 – Day 1 – Friday 26th August August 27, 2011


So here we are again then, the first day of the Reading Festival. I’m here with my good friend Nick Horslen and I am aiming to post a review of each day for you. Obviously I expect some comment as I doubt that you’ll agree with everything I say. Incidentally some of the opinions in the blog were suggested by Nick. I just wanted to make sure I gave him equal credit!

The Bronze Medal were first up for us on BBC Introducing Stage, they sounded ok, but personally I don’t see them scaling great heights. The Blackout were next up on the Main Stage, with a magnificent backdrop that said ‘Fuck The Blackout’. Personally I’d rather not as I didn’t find them that attractive! But they were pretty good and pretty heavy. Bizarrrely they dedicated what they called their heaviest song to all the sluts in the audience, so I guess we didn’t qualify for that. Miles Kane was in the NME/ Radio 1 tent. He is like an animated Liam Gallagher with a guitar. He was also very bloody good. New Found Glory were on the Main Stage, I thought that they were accomplished but perhaps not as good as they were. However they did a great cover of Sixpence None The Richer‘s “kiss Me”.

We then caught a part of Hugh Lennon‘s act on the Alternative Stage, he is a rather amusing hypnotist. After that we opted for Dry The River on the Festival Republic stage, definitely a good band. They have a  bit of Biffy Clyro with added violin. Pity they couldn’t dry the skies though! It was pissing down again by then and parts of the ground were covered in mud with the consistency of melted chocolate. We then saw Cerebal Ballzy, we were initially attracted by such a brilliant name. What were they like? Ballsy (or perhaps I should say ballzy) punk from Brooklyn! Al Pitcher kept us out of the rain and not only that he was a brilliant comedian. He was followed by Dead Cat Bounce, we felt that their name was better than their act!

Foster The People gave us electro pop via Tom Tom Club and  Talking Heads. An immense band, definitely best of the day for me. I will be downloading their album when I’m home on Monday. The crowd went absolutely mental for them!! The  Antlers came next and their singer gave us soundcheck yodel! Their sound is a kind of tripped out psychadelic space vibe. The Deftones were on the Main Stage, they were heavy and reliable and did what it says on the tin.

Anna Calvi, hmmmm, what can I say, definitely a little strange. Percussive blues,  operatic type vocal and unintelligable lyrics. The Offspring were excellent value for money and still pretty fly for white guys! They have aged well and are still pretty good but definitely not pretty. Noah and the Whale completely rocked the NME/ Radio stage. An incredible build up using an orchestral version of Bohemian Rhapsody; who’d have thought that we’d be singing that song at Reading this year? They truly are  a great fucking band a bit like Vampire Weekend with more orchestration and less African style guitars. We hung around for the White Lies and it was worth the wait. These guys used to come to Reading as teenagers and clearly they’ve learnt a lot! Bloody good band. Then it was the much anticipated Beady Eye, which frankly is really Oasis without Noel isn’t it? They were like an Oasis tribute band playing songs they had written in an Oasis style. Liam’s voice is clearly not what it was either and his stage presence is way past it’s sell by date. We headed for the exit and glimpsed My Chemical Romance who seemed to have quite a small crowd for a Main Stage headline act. Anyway time to sign off for now and get ready for day two!

 

Reading Festival 2011 – The Preview August 25, 2011

Filed under: Observation — justwilliam1959 @ 9:34 pm
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So here we are then just hours away from the kick off of the Reading and Leeds festivals which means you’ll shortly get to hear my opinions on all that I see this weekend. Well I suppose that to some degree does depend on exactly what I see; some things that go on at festival stay at festival. So perhaps I won’t mention scotch eggs! I reckon some of you could put 2 and 2 together about that and not many of you would reach an answer of 4. I will be at the Reading end of the festival, despite living very close to the Leeds site. Why would I do this I hear you ask? Well because
Reading for me is the original annual rock festival. Plus it is my annual meet up with my good friend Nick Horslen. A kind of Grumpy Old Men do the festival kind of vibe.

The headliners are My Chemical Romance, Pulp/ The Strokes (joint headliners) and Muse. Of that bunch I am mostly looking forward to Pulp. Muse will be playing the whole of their ‘Origin of Symmetry’ album. It’s the 10th anniversary year of the release of that one. I have seen Muse three times before and loved them every time. However I am a little torn this time as their set clashes with a headline set in one of the tents by 2 Many DJs. I love their mash-up mix tape efforts and I have always wanted to see them.

I always like to check out bands with interesting names that I have never heard of as well. So this year I shall definitely try to get to see She Keeps Bees.

If there is anyone you think I should check out feel free to let me know and if you’re going to be at Reading yourself come and say hello.
It’s adios for now while I go to the darkest recesses of the shed to try to find my steel toe-capped wellies!

 

“But if you go carrying pictures of chairman Mao, you ain’t going to make it with anyone anyhow” November 16, 2010


Clearly the new iPad would be difficult to carry, maybe it's the weight of all those Beatles songs

So at last the two big apples come together. The Beatles back catalogue are now all available on I Tunes. There was previously a lengthy trademark dispute between the Beatles Apple Corps and Steve Job’s Apple company. This was resolved a while ago and the gap between then and now was potentially down to EMI. That is certainly something that Paul McCartney hinted at. Steve Job was very happy with the deal and was quoted as saying that it had been “a long and winding road to get there” You can read the story by clicking here. Personally I have all the Fab Fours albums on CD so I am unlikely to buy anything of theirs from I Tunes. However it made me think that we ought to pick a Beatles song to beat this years X Factor song to the Christmas number one spot in the UK. Ideally “Revolution”, what do you folks think?

James Blunt holds his hand up and voila...... World War Three is prevented!

I would like to thank my good friend Nick Horslen for sending me this story. Apparently whilst he was in the army and stationed in Kosovo James Blunt prevented the start of World War Three. Does that explain why he went on to write such crap songs? I saw him on TV recently when he chaired ‘Never Mind The Buzzcocks‘ on BBC2, personally I thought he was devoid of humour although he was clearly trying. To be fair he was better than Jedward when they appeared on the show. You can read the Blunt Story on the Guardian website by clicking here. Incidentally I often wonder why he changed his name from Blount to something which rhymes with the ‘C’ word, do you?

Incidentally I love Weird Al Yankovic‘s take on Blunt’s “You’re Beautiful” which is wonderfully retitled “You’re Pitiful” I always used to slip this into my mobile disco set when I played background music at weddings. It worked well as people couldn’t hear it perfectly well so thought James had changed the words!

A new band I came across recently are the Ambassadors Of Morocco who have a new single out called rather interestingly “Wikipedia” I can’t get the chorus out of my head and it will be on my I Pod tomorrow for certain!

Talking of a great and catchy chorus have you seen the video for the new My Chemical Romance song? I’ve never been a big fan of the band but this song and the accompanying video are brilliant and somewhat weird too.

let me finish this post on a roll, a Rick Roll. This is the metal version of Rick Astley’s “Never Gonna Give You Up”. Not bad for the former tea boy at RCA. Does anyone know what he’s up to these days?

 

“Out of self respect I’m out of bread, I’m under loved I’m under fed” April 9, 2009


We took a day out to Whitby in North Yorkshire yesterday which is only about an hours drive from where I live in York. Many of you may know that Whitby is where much of Bram Stoker’s Dracula is set and much of the fabulously imposing structure of Whitby Abbey still remains. I think I will have to read the book again soon. Catwoman tells me that Whitby is supposed to be Goth Central, well apart from a couple of pre-teen girls with My Chemical Romance hoodies there was nothing even remotely close, maybe they just come out at night. By the way I know that MCR would not be considered goth, but really that is the closest thing I saw. But if the Daily Mail is to be believed, and I really don’t think it is, then these two kids were off to do some self harm and plan for suicide!

Whitby Abbey, it'll look good when it's finished won't it?

Whitby Abbey, it'll look good when it's finished won't it?

I did find a small independent music store though, as usual! I bought a copy of the supremely talented Julian Cope’s album ‘Black Sheep’ I got into Cope quite late really but I love his stuff now, especially his solo albums, I’m not so keen on the Teardrop Explodes. Incidentally did you know that the band got their name from issue 77 of Marvel Comics Daredevil from 1971 (which also featured Spiderman and Prince Namor)? Well they did and did you know that whilst I like Daredevil and Spidey the Silver Surfer is probably my favourite Marvel character? Well he is, but is followed in a very close second place by the Fantastic Four!

The page of the comic from which the Teardrop Explodes got their name

The page of the comic from which the Teardrop Explodes got their name

Whilst in Whitby we simply had to visit it’s most famous Fish and Chip restaurant, The Magpie and trust me it was well worth it! Click on the name to check it out. Speaking of fish,have any of you seen the new TV advert for Birds Eye Salmon Fish Fingers? I’m not sure if it is being shown outside the UK yet. Either way and just in case click here to see it. I think it is bloody hilarious and the best TV ad I’ve seen for ages.

I’ll cover just one birthday today 9th April. It’s the 29th birthday of Albert Hammond Jr off of the Strokes who has also produced a couple of solo albums in recent years too. He is the son of US singer songwriter Albert Hammond, I could make a joke here about his parents lacking creativity by giving him the same name as his Dad, but I won’t because that’s exactly what my parents did. no they didn’t name me Albert Hammond, he wasn’t my Dad ok, that’s just a “Big Stripey Lie” (you like the secret Kate reference Mickelodeon?). No my Dad, and therefore me too, were and are William Adamson, although no one ever calls me William anymore. Nowadays it’s Bill, Will, baldbloke or git. Anyway back to Mr Hammond Jr, I bought the Strokes’ first album ‘Is This It’ while I was on holiday in Canada in late August 2001. My copy contains the track “New York City Cops” which was removed from the US and some other territories releases after the terrible events of September 11th 2001. It was deemed disrespectful to the many public servants who risked and in many cases lost their lives on that day. I do understand that, but clearly it was written and recorded some time before those horrific murders so maybe now is a good time to reclaim it! Click here to see the band performing it live. Albert met Julian Casablancas, also off of the Strokes whilst at Boarding School in Switzerland. Albert’s dad had a massive hit in the early 70s with what I suppose would be termed one of my guilty pleasures these days, “It Never Rains In Southern California“. well maybe it does but surely it rains much, much less there than it does here in the UK.

Once again the Strokes fail to win at Giant Scrabble, spelling c;early wasn't their strong point!

Once again the Strokes fail to win at Giant Scrabble, spelling clearly wasn't their strong point!

It has been pointed out to me that Queen have not yet featured in my blog so far, well it’s nothing personal I do like them quite a lot. So here they are! On this day in 1973 Queen played a showcase gig for their new record label, EMI, at the Marquee Club in London. The late great (those l’s & g’s are getting very regular now, it must be all the Bran Flakes!) Freddie Mercury came up with the band’s name and claims he never even thought of it’s gay connotations, here is what he said about it; “I thought up the name Queen. It’s just a name, but it’s very regal obviously, and it sounds splendid, It’s a strong name, very universal and immediate. It had a lot of visual potential and was open to all sorts of interpretations. I was certainly aware of gay connotations, but that was just one facet of it.” For me Queen was more than just Freddie, it was a combination of him, Brian May, John Deacon and Roger Taylor. That is why I really don’t get stuff like the newish Paul Rodgers and Queen album. I think Paul Rodgers has one of the great rock voices but he’s not a part of Queen is he? I’m sure that some of you will disagree but that’s my opinion. Anyway let’s end this Queen piece on a fun note with another excellent Freddie quote. Queen and the Sex Pistols were recording in the same London studio complex in 1977 when Sid Vicious went into the wrong room and saw Freddie Mercury sitting at the piano alone. Sid allegedly said something like “Freddie Mercury, still bringing ballet to the masses are you?” Freddie’s excellent reply was allegedly something similar to “Oh yes Mr Ferocious dear, we are doing our best” Here are the mighty Queen with my favourite of all their songs “Seven Seas Of Rhye

Freddie loved to lord it over all those who were shorter than he was, which was basically..........everybody!

Freddie loved to lord it over all those who were shorter than he was, which was basically..........everybody!

And finally this day in 1991 saw the death of record producer Martin Hannett. He was born in Manchester and had produced many Manchester bands including; the Smiths, New Order, Joy Division, Happy Mondays and Magazine. He also worked with U2 and the Psychedelic Furs. He was credited as Martin zero for his first production job which was the “Spiral Scratch EP” by the Buzzcocks. He died of heart failure in 1991 after years of heavy drinking and drug addiction, which included heroin. Many people have a real misconception of the nature of addiction, myself included until recently. I have learned a lot from an Australian blog which now features on my BlogRoll, it’s called ‘The Australian Heroin Diaries‘ and you really should check it out. As far as Martin goes I had to finish with Joy Division’ fantastic “Love Will Tear Us Apart”

Martin was constantly being followed by two small UFOs that no one else could see

Martin was constantly being followed by two small UFOs that no one else could see

 

 
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