Saturday, December 10, 2005


Slow day? What was I thinking? I just had to wait for long enough...

Phil Wilson has just emailed this to the TVPs list:

"Dear All,

Sorry for this potential spammimng, but I think some
of you may be interested.

To celebrate the recent Cherry Red re-release, the
June Brides are doing a one-off accoustic gig in
London on 4 January at the Ivy House pub in

Only doing 8 or 10 songs, two accoustic guitars,
trumpet and viola. So not the full-on June Brides
experience. But it could be fun.

Feel free to contact me if you want any details.



Phil Wilson------------------------
-The June Brides website is at"

Blimey, so not a June Brides reformation proper, nor a full June Brides gig as such, but i'm able to go wa-hey! The June Brides are BACK! And that's enough for me.

And I couldn't let it pass without at least pointing you in the direction of an mp3 of 'Every Conversation', 'cept that I could, cos I could only find a clip of it, but go here to whet your appetite.

That's the song of which Bobby Gillespie said "I care about music and what really fucking annoys me is seeing so many people viewing music solely as a business venture. It cripples talent and I'll give you an example that proves it. If the June Brides' single "Every Conversation" was produced properly and put out on a major and plugged, it would be number one, because that record is a classic pop song! It's a sin when a record like that sells 700 copies. What sort of fucking state of affairs is it when talent like that is totally ignored? That's not whining. That's the music business."

My money's on him having said that when Primal Scream still used 12-string guitars, though.


Lardpony draws my attention to this report from the BBC. Fired up by the profits that prosecuting pensioners, children, the dead and very possibly embryo file-sharers has raked in for the BPI, the Music Publishers Association has decided to crack down on websites that publish song scores, lyrics and tablature without permission. I don't even have to explain this, do I?

It's only right that severe action is taken AND NOW, though. 'Cos these websites must be seriously eating in to the multi-millions brought in from sheet music revenue each year. Well, each year during the 1930s, perhaps.


James Mercer from The Shins has been talking to Pitchfork about the band's next album.

Though I'm not their biggest fan, they're pretty good and it's been a slow couple of days. It was either this; me blathering on about John Lennon like everyone else OR I could have reviewed a couple of TV advertised Xmas albums for you. Actually, I should have done that. I now like the idea of writing about 'I Wish It Could Be Christmas Everyday' as though the reader had never heard it. Arses.

While I'm about it, I *will* reminisce about John Lennon. The day after He was shot, I was at school and the Girl sat opposite me, who I won't name, as she was very-nice-but-superbly-dim-and-called-Karen informed me in hushed tones that her Mum had described whoever had done it as 'a swine'. I'm convinced to this day that it was, and probably still is, the worst thing she'd ever heard her Mother say. Quick as a flash I responded "Your Mum sounds like a right wanker". Well, more specifically, I finally thought to say that just now, 25 years later.

So anyway, new Shins album...
The Shins : Pad out my blog.
Thanks, fellers.

Thursday, December 08, 2005


This weeks theme is stuff that's closing down, it seems. Fuck it, I'm in a bad enough mood, I'm going to celebrate it.

LEGENDARY New York punk/new wave venue CBGBs (for the curious, CBGB OMFUG stands (stood?) for Country, Blue Grass, Blues (&) Other Music For Uplifting Gourmandisers) will close it's doors on Halloween of 2006. All of this comes as no surprise after a lengthy legal battle with the building's owners, which though the venue was arguably the victor, it probably didn't help them when their lease expired at the end of August.

The early stomping ground for The Ramones, Blondie, Television, Talking Heads, Johnny Thunders & The Heartbreakers, The Dead Boys, The Dictators, Richard Hell and the Voidoids (you surely know this roll-call by now?) etc. in it's position at The Bowery on the seedier lower east side of New York, the place was living proof, were it needed, that a city gets the culture that it deserves. It gets the culture that surrounds it.

The owner, Hilly Kristal, isn't sentimental however. On the subject of a move to elsewhere in Manhattan, or even a prospective re-opening in Las Vegas, of all places, he says "Things are different all the time - look at the 70s, the 80s, the 90s. The most important thing is we're keeping the integrity of CBGB. It won't be exactly the same, but it will have the same ingredients".
"...Norman Wisdom, Johnny, Joey, Dee Dee - GOOD TIMES!"


In contrast to the Northampton Roadmender going under with barely a whimper, people are begining to cause a fuss about Derby Cityscape planning to knock The Victoria Inn down and turn it into shiny new offices.

Compare and contrast.

The Roadmender was a purpose built venue with a main hall for established acts and a smaller room for those considered 'up-and-coming', or indeed just 'crap'. Amply-sized stages, impressive lighting, state-of-the-art PA system.

The Roadmender had (and admittedly, this is fairly unique for any venue of it's type) BEAUTIFUL dressing rooms, the venue staff were courteous, and your rider (observed to the letter) was always sat waiting for you upon your arrival there. Also, if my memory doesn't deceive me - they used to lay on sandwiches for when you turned up. A small touch, but one that was welcome after a 400-mile-or-so uncomfortable van journey from Aberdeen. They even had showers. That worked.

The Roadmender was an essential stop-off point on any UK tour that had a brain in it's agent. The promotional staff managed to combine this with giving as much of a chance as possible to homegrown talent and, as far as I'm aware, there weren't any city-wide squabbles as to who had wronged who and in what fashion that were allowed to get seriously out-of-hand, alienating a considerable percentage of the localities grass-roots gig-going music enthusiasts.

The Roadmender had had a lick of paint within the last 25 years.

The Victoria Inn has a particularly charming German Shepherd dog.

All things must pass.

Monday, December 05, 2005


Long-established Northampton venue the Roadmender has been shut down after the withdrawal of investment from the city council there.

It's a shame, as my old band recorded it's first demo in the recording studio upstairs there. To be honest, it wasn't a very good demo, and I don't know if this was connected at all but it wasn't much of a recording studio either, but I think we all agree that a very important piece of UK rock music heritage is in real danger of being lost forever. Especially when you consider that some other bands you might even have heard of played at the venue as well.

In fact, as a venue, it was really good, with two very well-appointed halls in the building, and I have to say, the plushest dressing rooms I think I ever encountered.

It brings into question the wisdom of relying on your local council to fund such a venture when withdrawal of essential funding can occur at a moment's notice. At least Derby City Council don't even vaguely threaten to get our hopes up with anything along these lines. In fact, if you ever encounter the venue hire and production costs in place at the Assembly Rooms or The Darwin Suite, you'll logically be of the mind that they take a hardline and positively act as a deterrent.

The Roadmender : When did they make it
look nice then?


Plans and Apologies are giving more free-stuff away again. Well, in fact they've had the Free Dee Pee EP up for download for a couple of weeks now, but it was getting so that I was doing an upadate about them approximately every 20 minutes, so I had to hold off for a bit.

And if you're really particular about this sort of thing, they've even provided artwork for it, admittedly it's artwork that looks like it was drawn in a school competition for particularly 'backwards' children, but artwork it is nevertheless.

The tracklisting is as follows:

1. Attenzione Caldo
2. Chandos Pole St.
3. Brainz
4. Tony Blair: Fucknut

In all honesty, it's probably supreme confidence on their part that they can give material of this calibre away on this regular a basis, but y'know, it's less fun and much more difficult to take the piss out of that sort of thing.