Aural Sculptors - The Stranglers Live 1976 to the Present

Welcome to Aural Sculptors, a blog aimed at bringing the music of The Stranglers to as wide an audience as possible. Whilst all of the various members of the band that have passed through the ranks since 1974 are accomplished studio musicians, it is on stage where the band have for me had their biggest impact.

As a collector of their live recordings for many years I want to share some of the better quality material with other fans. By selecting the higher quality recordings I hope to present The Stranglers in the best possible light for the benefit of those less familiar with their material than the hardcore fan.

Needless to say, this site will steer well clear of any officially released material. As well as live gigs, I will post demos, radio interviews and anything else that I feel may be of interest.

In addition, occasionally I will post material by other bands, related or otherwise, that mean a lot to me.

Your comments and/or contributions are most welcome. Please email me at

Saturday 24 February 2024

TV Smith & The Bored Teenagers Sojus 7 Monheim Germany 3rd February 2014


TV Smith loves Germany and the Germans love TV Smith... and The Adverts. 

Here is a very recent marathon two part set where The Bored Teenagers 'Replay The Adverts' before embarking on a second set with highlights of what Tim did in the last 45 years since the demise of The Adverts. 

Just to return to The Adverts for one moment. Listening to the first half of the set, it still amazes me how well material from both of the band's albums have with stood the test of time.

Thanks as ever to Peter for the share!



Luxor Cologne 24th April 2012


A nice sounding recording from 'Giants' in Europe. A hectic year for the band on the touring front.



01. Intro
02. Burning Up Time
03. Sometimes
04. The Raven
05. Lowlands
06. Hey! (Rise Of The Robots)
07. Hanging Around
08. Unbroken
09. Time Was Once On My Side
10. Golden Brown
11. Strange Little Girl
12. Always The Sun
13. Walk On By

01. Giants
02. Peaches
03. Mercury Rising
04. 5 Minutes
05. Relentless
06. Lost Control
07. Shut Up
08. Something Better Change
09. No More Heroes
10. Nice ‘N’ Sleazy
11. Boom Boom
12. Duchess
13. All Day & All Of The Night
14. Tank

Lowlands Acoustic Tour April 2011


Now this was great fun. Three nights of following the band in The Netherlands and Belgium. At the time, the acoustic thing was new to me and I thought it worked very well. It also meant a change to see the band in some smaller, even more intimate venues. This was the occasion that brought me to Turnhout for the first time, On that occasion, I was totally ignorant of the fact that 67 years earlier my Grandfather had been here and that every September his regiment (the 11th Royal Scots Fusiliers) were and are commemorated as liberators of the town. In more recent years I have laid wreaths in the CWGC section of the municipal cemetery. But on this occasion it was all fast food and drinking!

Here we have a nicely edited record of these shows. Apologies as I received this in a trade many years ago I cannot remember who was responsible for the authoring.

DVD image:


Monday 19 February 2024

NME 24th to 31st December 1977


I am not sure whether visitors to this site will be interested in uploads of certain issues of the music press or not, even more to the point whether people are keen to see images of the gallic one's bare arse!

For my part I love to peruse old issues of the UK music weeklies that back in the day served as indicators on what we would spend our money on and how we would use our social lives! I have on many occasions (OK it is maybe a bit of a bloke thing to do... akin to making lists!) turned to the gig listings, picked a day in order to decide in whose company I would have spent that particular evening. 

What these old issues also provide is band histories as they happened. Snapshots of long careers. Given the very high price that the original papers (yellow papers as Gunta calls them) command online it is a shame that more are not digitised and put out there.

This was the infamous issue that featured our bass player as 'Stud Of The Year'. What is clear from this issue was that 1977 was unquestioningly the year of punk. The 'King of Rock 'n' Roll is dead 'Long live King Punk Rock!'. 

If anyone on here has old issues of NME, Sounds or Melody Maker etc scanned and would be happy to share please get in touch/


Ombudsmen The Lexington London 18th February 2024

This then was Ombudsmen's third gig in the capital and their biggest yet. A birthday gig for Christopher Plummer, the audience travelled for the occasion (many braving the current vagaries of our public transport system to make it up to North London). Ombudsmen were second on after 'College Boy Haircut'. The sound on the night was good, the band having enjoyed a soundcheck, a luxury that they have not enjoyed at some of their gigs to the detriment of some shows.

The set was essentially a run through of the material on their two E.P.s, 'Fizzy Milk' and 'Terms & Conditions Apply' (both are on Spotify). John, the bass player assured me that new material is being worked up and will appear on a further E.P. release before too long. 

Before the gig Mo told me that she was very nervous, said in slightly earthier terms I may add. This was by far the biggest audience that the band have played to to date, by my reckoning 150 people or so. Once on stage though there were few signs of nerves although that can be difficult to tell as the singer stands stock still throughout... only movement of the eyes and mouth confirm an existence of vital signs!

Mo Andrews and John Bardsley (Ombudsmen)
The Lexington London
18th February 2024.
(Photo: Paul Jenner)

With this larger audience, I took some moments to look around me. Here we had a situation where the audience were not primarily made up of friends and relations of the band, so to see strangers genuinely getting into the band was quite a thrill. 

The elders look on.
(Photo: Paul Jenner)

After 30 minutes in the merch booth the band had to hot foot it back to the M6 and Manchester to be up for work in the morning. But hey, they are young, they can do these things. I on the other hand cannot! 

Loved the day, very proud of Mo and the band and it was great to spend the evening with Owen, Jac and Peej. And thanks to Christopher for putting the thing on and giving such encouragement to new, young bands!

'Take Everything'
The Lexington London
18th February 2024.

Sunday 18 February 2024

Le 112 Terville 4th February 2009


A great sounding gig from France back in 2009.



01. (Get A) Grip (On Yourself)
02. 5 Minutes
03. Peaches
04. Nice'N'Sleazy
05. Spectre Of Love
06. Skin Deep
07. No Mercy
08. Always The Sun
09. Strange Little Girl
10. Golden Brown
11. The Raven
12. Thrown Away

01. Walk On By
02. Hanging Around
03. Straighten Out
04. Big Thing Coming
05. All Day & All Of The Night
06. Duchess
07. Tank
08. JJ
09. Nuclear Device
10. Something Better Change
11. Encore Break
12. No More Heroes

Saturday 17 February 2024

This Is Britpop At The BBC


A bit of a departure here for which I make no apologies. I am of an awkward age. Too young for punk in its prime, I saw those bands either late in the day or at the point that their initial animosities had sufficiently abated to allow them one again to share the same stage. In between there was a musical vacuum in the UK. Just horrible.

That changed a bit in 1994/95 with the appearance of a number of young bands that put guitar, drum and bass at the forefront of their material once more. The music press ever keen to pigeonhole a scene labelled these bands Britpop and the rest is history.

For my part there was one band that got my pulse racing and that was Elastica. I loved them, the sheer neck of the band! Listen to most bands and you can recognise their influences. With Elastica, it was possible to take that to the next level... influence per song. But no matter, they were just brilliant. They had it all, the look, the sound and the attitude. 'Martens and leggings' in Owen's words!

In some ways, Britpop was the next 'punk' revolution... like its older '77 cousin, it was intense, much hyped in the press and very short lived. And yet, as was the case with punk, most of the bands involved are viewed 30 years on with great affection.

The eagle eyed amongst you may well spot an honorary Wingman.

DVD Image: