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

Tuesday 12 July 2011

The Dickies, The Underworld, Camden, London 22nd July 2009

Saturday night sees the return of the Dickies to the London stage. If you are in London on the night or have yet to have the pleasure of an evening in the company of the Dickies then I really urge you to make the effort. The Dickies are the only band without exception that have never proved to be a disappointment on the many occasions that I have seen them live. Never a half-hearted show in all those times.

Their 'Clown Princes of Punk' label detracts from their obvious musicianship and the excellent quality of their original material. It's not just 'The Banana Splits' and 'Nights in White Satin' you know!

As a taster for Saturdays gig, here's a fantastic bit of footage from their last London appearance at the Underworld on 22nd July 2009. The clip, shot by my mate Chris Braund, requires some explanation.

This was the first night of a UK/European tour. The band play in their set a song called 'If Stuart Could Talk.... What Would He Say?'. In short it concerns the scenario where the lead singer's (Leonard) penis (Stuart) could have a dialogue with him about his conduct and treatment of his dick! In the song Stuart is a penis puppet that may or may not be controlled by Leonard. Come to the point in the set where Stuart makes his appearance, some twat in the audience gets a bit biosterous and takes it upon himself to take Stuart. Grabs are made and avoided by Stuart's owner and good humoured warnings are conveyed. This to no avail. Eventually the twat succeeds, with the upshot that Stuart's testicles are left hanging by a sinue.

It is at this point (and captured marvellously in the clip, see c. 3 minutes in) that an extremely knobbed-off (quite literally) Leonard launched into the audience to 'discuss' the problem with the twat.

Now, for a band known for the theatrical and visual elements of their shows, I understand Leonard's anger. But still to see a man in his 50's in orange slacks leap into a melee in the crowd to protect his penis tells me that punk will never really die and remains one of the funniest sights I have witnessed at a gig!!

If Stuart Could Talk
The Dickies
Camden Underworld 22nd July 2009

Stuart and Leonard in Happier Times

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