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 adrianandrews1@sky.com.


Monday, 29 October 2012

Steve Drewett at The Half Moon in Bishops Stortford 27th October 2012

Steve Drewett
The Half Moon, Bishops Stortford
27th October 2012


Last Saturday's Oxjam gig (a nationwide fund raising event for the Oxfam charity) was ideal for me. A gig in the back room of a pub within walking distance from home. This was the room that was the venue for both Gunta's 30th birthday and Rudi's christening many years ago.

As I mentioned in a previous post this was our local until we moved to the other side of the town (at the time it was run by a lovely couple, James and Helen - James it transpired after we had known each other for a couple of years was sometime stand in bass player for the Adicts). Since moving the frequency of our visits to this particular watering hole have diminished somewhat, so it was really great to catch up with a couple of people who we haven't seen for some time. And so it was that by the time I ventured into the back room for the gig I was a bit Wibbly Pig!

I spoke briefly to Steve before he was due to take to the stage. His set this time around was much more Neurotics orientated that on the previous times that I have seen him play solo (albeit some years ago). Two of these songs I recorded.

'Inch Away'
Steve Drewett
 
 
 
 
 

'This Fragile Life'
Steve Drewett

The set closed with a rousing rendition of 'Kick Out The Tories'. Well at least it was rousing in my head. Gunta informed me that I was 'helping' Steve with the vocals from the front of the stage... how kind of me.... such a socialist act!

Sunday, 28 October 2012

Mercury Rising Single Release



Yeah, I know, the single has had its day. As a promotional vehicle in this era of the digital download its value relative to the cost of production is limited certainly.

Nevertheless, as a record buyer of a certain vintage there still remains within me a certain tingle of anticipation that a single release brings on. So, having acknowledged the limited value in commercial and promotional terms, the real beneficiaries of the single release are the fans.... and I'm all for that! As an item, it works as a stop gap between album and tour.

I have had the email to inform me that the cd has been dispatched . I will report more fully when I have the item in the machine.

As to the content, it's great to have the option of an instrumental version and a live version from the last tour makes the 'Mercury Rising' story complete. The choice of 'Sometimes' is a bit of a puzzle. Perhaps the instrumental of 'Lowlands' as was circulated on Soundcloud would have been a better choice or maybe a live version of 'Time Was Once On My Side'. Still please do not take this observation as a moan, since as a fan I am more than happy to have product in hand!

No Nukes Festival Utrecht 9th April 1982


Here's a treat, consider it like a live e.p. From the No Nules festival 4 top quality tracks have been unearthed and they are just too good not to nick and put up here as well. So thanks to Dom P and the others on the Burning Up Time Forum responsible for getting this gem out there.

I give you:

https://rapidshare.com/#!download|234p10|1477226629|FM_Utrecht_82.zip|35192|0|0

01. Man They Love To Hate
02. Who Wants The World?
03. Baroque Bordello
04. Golden Brown

Saturday, 27 October 2012

20 From '80 (20) U.K. Subs Music Machine Camden 8th August 1980

U.K. Subs pictured in 1980

It was of course the Subs who inspired this 20 from '80 thread idea with their refrain '1980 is a brand new age!', so it is only right and proper that Charlie's boys feature in this list and round it off.

1980 was indeed a very good year for the Subs who at the time were working hard to build up a following by relentlessly touring (a habit that they have not kicked to this day!).

I am happy to say that the U.K. Subs are still with us and still touring constantly. A quick check shows that they embark on an extensive UK tour next month, followed by Europe early in the new year.

Here's a show from August 1980 from The Music Machine in London's Camden. The set contains new material from the forthcoming 'Diminished Responsibility' album released the following year.

Music Press advert for the gig


FLAC: https://rapidshare.com/files/1458327503/uksubsmusicmachine1980FLAC.zip

MP3: On its way!

01. Emotional Blackmail
02. You Don't Belong
03. Confrontation Street
04. New Order
05. I Couldn't Be You
06. Tomorrow's Girls
07. Left For Dead
08. Warhead
09. Public Servant
10. Kicks
11. Fall Of The Empire
12. Rat Race
13. New York State Police
14. Teenage
15. Crash Course
16. C.I.D.

Also playing tonight:

The Bodysnatchers   Hornsea Floral Hall, London
Athletico Spizz 80/Tenpole Tudor   Marquee, London

20 From '80 (19) Squeeze Music Hall Toronto 11th April 1980

Squeeze in 1980


Here's another band that were highly active in 1980 that offered up songs of such quality that, 30 plus years on they still sound remarkable. Again, a contemporary off-shoot of punk rather than a punk band per se Squeeze's strength I think lay in the near perfect songwriting abilities if Glen Tilbrook and Chris Difford. As the age old advice goes, 'write about what you know' and you get the feeling that some of the material at least could be autobiographical of the band's life down in South London.

I only saw Squeeze once in 1989 (on the 'Frank' tour) and surprisingly I came away disappointed. It wasn't that the band played badly, rather they committed the cardinal sin, in my eyes at least, of playing a medley of hits. This happened quite a lot in the '80's (I also recall Motorhead doing it as well), but such practises should be consigned to the dustbin of time...... Stars on 45 and Jive Bunny... no more needs to be said.

I have tickets to see a reformed Squeeze in Cambridge next month so I will report back.

FLAC: On its way!

MP3: https://rapidshare.com/files/159217403/squeezetoronto110480MP3.zip

01. Slap and Tickle
02. Touching Me, Touching You
03. Slightly Drunk
04. Pulling Mussels From a Shell
05. Hop, Skip and Jump
06. Another Nail in My Heart
07. Cool For Cats
08. The Mess Around
09 I Think I'm Go-Go
10. Misadventure
11. It's So Dirty
12. Goodbye Girl
13. Encore Break
14. Up the Junction
15. There at the Top

In town on this night:

Whirlwind/The Newtown Neurotics   Dingwalls, London
OMD/Distractions/Flowers   Electric Ballroom, London
Joy Division   Russell Club, Manchester
Secret Affair   Free Trade Hall, Manchester

Friday, 26 October 2012

The Damned On Tour In The UK With The Dickies

 

Not since The Damned co-headlined the Brixton Academy with The Ramones have I seen such a great gig pairing. Here we have the clown princes of punk representing both sides of the atlantic.

The Dickies' Stan Lee with Messers Vanian and Sensible
The Misfits Fiend Fest 2003

I have posted about The Dickies before but I'll say this again, they are the only band that I have seen on many occasions that have never delivered a bad gig. Every other band (without exception) have played at least one howler!

Good luck to The Dickies. I hope the two bands bring out the best in each other.


'Got It At The Store'
The Dickies
The Garage, London 16th July 2011

...... Just a though.... any chance of adding Ruts DC to the bill..... no.... oh well.

Liverpool University 14th October 1977 - With Keyboards (and Bass!)


Now there's no offence intended here. I saw Hugh do 'Heroes' last week and my comments were positive. Still for the benefit of those with an interest in a compare and contrast exercise here's your chance.

One of the better bootlegs from 1977 and indeed recorded on the 'No More Heroes' promotional tour. I give you The Stranglers at Liverpool University. This recording also includes the soundcheck (complete?) and the elusive 'English Towns'.

NEW LINK: FLAC: http://we.tl/LpVliFry8t

 Sound Check
1. English Towns
2. Bring On The Nubiles
3. No More Heroes

Gig
4. No More Heroes
5. Ugly
6. Bring On The Nubiles
7. Sometimes
8. Dagenham Dave
9. Dead Ringer
10. Hanging Around
11. Five Minutes
12. Something Better Change
13. I Feel Like A Wog
14. I Feel Like A Wog (cont'd)
15. Straighten Out
16. Burning Up Time
17. London Lady
18. Grip
19. Down In The Sewer

Manchester Apollo 25th October 1979


Just past it's anniversary (What's 12 hours though eh?). Here's a nice sounding UK Raven tour recording from Manchester.

FLAC: https://rapidshare.com/files/3510865696/Manchester251079FLAC.zip

MP3: https://rapidshare.com/files/1244172980/Manchester251079MP3.zip

Artwork: https://rapidshare.com/files/1823571381/Manchester251079AW.zip



Ruts DC Gig At Islington Assembly Hall Cancelled - Someone Up There Hates Me!


I was gutted to learn that next week's scheduled gig at the Islington Assembly Hall has gone south. Given that I had tickets to see them in Harlow, was planning to see them in Birmingham, as the appearance at the London Punk Festival wasn't happening, only to change plans on the confirmation of the Islington gig.... I am now officially feeling jinxed. First it was Kevin Rowland and now it seems that the Mayor of Islington has come in on the plot!!

Fourth time lucky......


....... may be I shouldn't have said that!

This is what I am missing. One for Malcom.

'Love In Vain'
Ruts DC
Hare & Hounds, Birmingham
6th October 2012



Hugh Featured in The Current Issue of 'Vive Le Rock'



The title says it all really. I just wanted to draw your attention to this one. I will refrain from posting the article on these pages as my mate is one of the Assistant Editors of said magazine and he would tell me off!  :-D

Steve Drewett Uxbridge Labour Club October 1988


'Does Anyone Know Where The Gig Is?'

Here is a recording from the gig that I mentioned in the recent Neurotics post, the gig that I and a handful of other hapless students missed for want of common sense!

This must have been one of Steve's earliest solo gigs (the Neurotics were still a going concern for another week or so at this point in time) and he was clearly nervous at the prospect of stepping out on his own.

FLAC: https://rapidshare.com/files/2857007773/UxbridgeLabourClubOctober1988FLAC.zip

MP3: https://rapidshare.com/files/3220788850/UxbridgeLabourClubOctober1988MP3.zip

01. This Fragile Life
02. Angela
03. No Respect
04. Take Strike Action
05. If Only
06. Keep The Faith
07. Baby Don't You Grieve After Me
08. Afrika
09. Never Thought
10. Talk
11. Inch Away
12. Sweet Jesus

Some 24 years later and I will be seeing Steve Drewett play at the Half Moon pub (my old local) in Bishops Stortford (so a 5 minute walk down the road for me). This time I know where I'm going!

A review will follow.

Tuesday, 23 October 2012

Hugh Cornwell Manchester Academy 12th October 2012


In answer to my request, it has been highlighted that Hugh's set from Manchester is available in lossless Flac format here:

http://tarquinlive.blogspot.co.uk/2012/10/hugh-cornwell-manchester-university-12.html

I'd say that the Tarquin Live site is well worth a browse as taste wise there is significant overlap with this humble site.

Here's some artwork I knocked up.

Artwork: https://rapidshare.com/files/3781333566/ManchesteracademyAW.zip

1. Totem And Taboo
2. The Face
3. I Want One Of Those
4. Stuck In Daily Mail Land
5. Bad Vibrations
6. God Is A Woman
7. Love Me Slender
8. Gods Guns And Gays
9. A Street Called Carroll
10. In The Dead Of Night

1. I Feel Like A Wog
2. Bitching
3. Dead Ringer
4. Dagenham Dave
5. Bring On The Nubiles
6. Something Better Change
7. No More Heroes
8. Peasant In The Big Shitty
9. Burning Up Time
10. English Towns
11. School Mam
12. Strange Little Girl
13. I’m Going To The City
14. Nice ‘N’ Sleazy

Sunday, 21 October 2012

Manchester Apollo 21st February 1985 - Speed Adjusted


This gig was uploaded some weeks ago with a health warning attached. The original transfer ran slow on account of a tape stretch I think. MeAnIe has done a sterling job on correcting the file and putting together some excellent artwork. Many thanks!

FLAC: https://rapidshare.com/files/869495086/ManchesterfixedFLAC.zip

MP3: https://rapidshare.com/files/3288413980/ManchesterfixedMP3.zip

Artwork: https://rapidshare.com/files/2746364657/ManchesterfixedAW.zip

1. Intro
2. Something Better Change
3. Nuclear Device
4. Uptown
5. Dead Ringer
6. No Mercy
7. Nice"N"Sleazy
8. Thrown Away
9. Let Me Down Easy
10. Midnight Summer Dream
11. European Female

1. Ships That Pass In The Night
2. Golden Brown
3. Peaches
4. Death And Night And Blood
5. Threatened
6. Punch And Judy
7. Hanging Around
8. I Feel Like A Wog
9. Down In The Sewer
10. Nubiles (Cocktail Version)
11. Toiler On The Sea

Saturday, 20 October 2012

Hugh Cornwell Islington O2 Academy 19th October 2012


Right, I'll be honest upfront here, it was purely the 'No More Heroes' set that enticed me to this gig. Good luck to Hugh with the new material, but his Jimi Hendrix/Arthur Lee tinged brand of rock is not my thing really. When I heard that bass and keyboards would be interchanged for the 'Heroes' set I was concerned....

The venue on this very damp Friday evening was pretty full, a good turn out for the old boy. For the reasons given above, I won't dwell on the 'Totem and Taboo' set but move on to what I believe a sizable proportion of the crowd were there for.

There were several elements that made this material stand out in worthy contrast to how The Stranglers now play this material. Hugh's vocal was in the main pretty good throughout this set, although I do struggle with the reversal from the original when it comes to the vocal duties... but hey if JJ's not there!? On that point, Steve's vocal on 'Something Better Change' didn't really work for me, but the bar was set high.

What was consistently good, to my ears at least, was the guitar. Hugh was spot on I think for the majority of the set and his guitar parts were true to the original (which is very important for me). As for the keyboard bass, that wasn't such an issue in the end, it was there and it worked as intended. I would like to be able to say the same thing for the keyboards. I wasn't expecting a glorious hammond swirl, but neither was I anticipating gameshow keyboards. So I apologise Hugh, but that element of the show needs some work (I think that comment may qualify me to be in the ranks of the 'Stranglers Police'), but it was my only real beef with this set.

The highlight for me was undoubtedly 'English Towns', a track often consigned to be filler on the album, but I can't agree, for me i has always been one of the best tracks on the album. So, to hear it last night in this context was a real treat (and a rare treat indeed, the only documented Mark I live version being from a 1977 soundcheck in Liverpool).

Hugh Cornwell
'English Towns'
The Arches, Glasgow
5th October 2012

A second highlight was 'Strange Little Girl', my appreciation of which is documented elsewhere on this site. If ever was a song that belongs to Hugh's vocal this is it. Absolutely fantastic to hear him do it.

Hugh Cornwell
'Strange Little Girl'
Carlisle Brickyard
3rd October 2012

So Hugh, I think that you pulled it off quite admirably.

O2 Academy Islington 19th October 2012
(Thanks to Owen Carne for the photo)

Should anyone have any recordings from this tour that they are happy to share please get in touch as I would love to hear the set again without the influence of the white wine/kronenburg cocktails that I was drinking!



'You're Always Alone With A Neurotic' by Steve Drewett


I picked this e-book up from Amazon some time ago for the princely sum of £1. Originally presented in the form of a blog written by Steve Drewett, singer and guitarist with Harlow punk stalwarts 'The Newtown Neurotics', the book runs along separate timelines which document the final days of the band in 1988 and the run up to reunion dates that the band played in 2005.

Highly introspective the book mixes Steve's thoughts on many of life's more personal events, love, fatherhood and bereavement... oh and there's a band in there somewhere. The confidence struggles described as the band prepared for the 2005 gigs was something of a surprise, not being something that you would perhaps associate with a musician who on and off has spent 30 years plus playing to paying audiences.

This book was all the more enjoyable because I was at the majority of the gigs described within it's 'pages'.



My association with the band goes back to about 1983 I suppose with the release of the 'Repercussions' album. The following year me and my mates got a first taste of politics in the latex form of 'Spitting Image' and The Miners Strike. In that year I was 15, three years away from the 1987 general election (where I calculated that the two votes cast by my friend and I accounted for 2% of the Labour vote on my ward.... that's Mid Sussex for you!), but I was taking this stuff in.

The first PM I consciously remember was Jim Callaghan.... and then in 1979 she came along! From that point onwards, politics seemed to be unavoidable, from the 1981 inner city riots to the Grand Hotel bombing in 1984, via the Falklands conflict of '82.

In the mid '80s, as well as listening to The Stranglers, The Damned and... and... I was listening to more political music. Crass and Conflict were fine, but in the music of The Neurotics and Billy Bragg I saw something that I though was more attainable.

Messers Bragg & Drewett


My first opportunity to see The Neurotics was at The Richmond Hotel in Brighton. For some reason, I didn't make it on that night, but my mates that did go reported something of a pitched battle with right wing Crawley skins intent on disrupting the gig. The next visit to the town was scheduled to be at the Zap Club, but again I was unlucky as on this occasion Steve Drewett had just had his wisdom teeth removed , so Attila did the honours on the night. And so it was that my first gig was in January 1986 at The Basement and the band proved to be worth the wait.

With a ticket price to make you smile


Two years later I found myself at Brunel University. When I got there there were still posters up advertising a gig that the band played there in 1987. This gig has subsequently been released and Steve has described it as one of the best gigs the band ever played.

Two weeks into the course and we got word that Steve was playing a solo gig at the Uxbridge Labour Club. In a scene reminiscent of 'Does Anyone Know Where The March Is?' five of us walked around the dark streets of Uxbridge looking for the venue (which it turns out was about 5 minutes walk from the campus). Handfuls of A levels and not a jot of common sense between us... that's students for you!

Next up was an anti-fascist gig at The Electric Ballroom, with Attila, Howling Wilf, The Neurotics and The Men They Couldn't Hang. Most memorable in my mind was standing next to Shane McGowan at the bar (where else) who to my disgust was wearing a Level 42 shirt!!

Last call for The Neurotics was their gig at the Fulham Greyhound.

'Blitzkrieg Bop'
Fulham Greyhound
29th October 1988

This was the bollocks, a full on celebration of the band's achievements over their then 10 year existence.



Post Neurotics Steve formed The Indestructible Beat who I saw just the once at The Camden Workers Social Club at a Cable Street Beat event. I found the flyer the other day.



The billed International Brigade speaker was ill if I remember correctly, so on the night in stepped Mensi to deliver the anti-fascist message (who was infinitely more sweary than the old man would have been!).

The years then passed during which time I moved with my wife to Bishops Stortford, just down the road from Neurotics Central.

When the band finally reformed in 2004 to mark the launch of the superb 'Stortbeat' compilation, I missed it.... I didn't even know that it had taken place, but I was ready in 2005 when the band made the decision to venture beyond The Square once again. These are some of the gigs described in 'You're Always Alone With A Neurotic'. I bounced for all I was worth, like the portly middle-aged man that I am, in Harlow, London and Brighton. The London gig was particularly joyous until I missed the last train back to Stortford. My attempts to sleep cuddled up to the bronze sculpture of evacuees near the entrance to Liverpool Street station was futile as the hangover kicked in. Pissed as I was that night, it meant a lot to me to have a brief chat with Colin Dredd, original bass player, who despite being unable to commit fully to the band at that time, clearly still shared the passion for what the band were doing.

The Neurotics are still going, albeit without Colin and Simon, but sadly nothing has really changed and the relevance of much of the material is undiminished!



Tuesday, 16 October 2012

Something Of An Enigma

Bletchley Park Manion
A bit of an eyesore!

This weekend, my Dad and I finally got round to making a trip that we had talked about for a number of years, a day at 'The Home of the Codebreakers'... Bletchley Park. Why it took us so long is a mystery, given that the place is little more than 45 minutes by train out of Euston.

Whilst we both have a mutual interest in the Second World War, my Dad's interest in the place is a little more personal. A keen radio amateur for many years he had maintained a lifelong enthusiasm for wireless communication. Moreover, as an employee of the then Ministry of Aviation he was to undertake a six week training programme at the Park. That was in 1966, when the Park was still the property of the GPO. Back in the '60's of course, the significance of Bletchley Park was unknown to all bar those in the highest echelons of certain Government Ministries and Armed Forces and some of those who were employed on the grounds in those dark days of the early 1940's. The wall of silence imposed by the Official Secrets Act was not breached until the mid '70's, with a change in classification of related documentation only occurring in the late '70's.

Much to my Dad's pleasure, Block D where he spent his weeks in training is still there (he was under the impression that this particular block had been demolished). This was also true of Hut 4 where we had a cup of tea. By 1966 it played host to weekly dances on a Friday night (a reminiscence too far for my Mum by all accounts!)

Other than to upload a few of the photographs that I took on the day before my camera battery died on me, it is pointless to attempt to repeat the history of Bletchley Park here since it is documented widely and with far greater clarity and accuracy than I could manage. My account would undoubtedly be messy as I think that a brief explanation of the working principles of an Enigma machine had induced in me something of a 'Brain fog'!

Instead, for those interested, I have included links to a few sites that provide more information on the work undertaken at the Park and on a couple of the central characters involved.

Bletchley Park Official Site

Bletchley Park

Enigma

One of the many models of the Enigma machine

Lorenz

Colossus

Rebuilt of the Colossus Computer

Alan Turing

'Dilly' Knox

That done, I only wanted to comment on two aspects of the day that troubled me.

The Condition of Bletchley Park

Being relatively close to my home town, our local news has occasionally carried stories over a number of years that has highlighted the ever increasing state of decay of the site and its buildings. The original codebreakers' huts (of wooden construction) and the concrete blocks (constructed later in the war) are falling to pieces irrespective of their materials of construction. Certainly for the wooden huts, being 'temporary' structures (no-one anticipated the war to be as prolonged as it turned out to be), the decay is not surprising. Now all of these buildings have been standing for 70 years, exposed to the elements of the British climate (over time, surely as effective an agent of destruction as the Luftwaffe!) and they are in a pitiful state.

One of the early wooden huts sadly in need of attention

So this is my issue, since the end of the war or perhaps since the function of Bletchley Park during the war finally became public knowledge, why has this site been allowed to crumble as it has?

I believe that the site is now owned by English Heritage. This was something of a surprise as I would have expected the site to have been affiliated with the Imperial War Museum. But regardless of that, whoever owns it is strapped for cash. I am pleased to say that our guide did inform us that lottery funding had been granted to allow renovation work to commence (removal of asbestos in the huts being an obvious priority). In addition, Google has donated money for the preservation of the site (on the grounds that Google consider the 'Colossus' machine to be the world's first search engine). That is great, but without wishing to come across as jingoistic, British money should have been invested to save the site at least 30 years ago!

The Treatment of Alan Turing

The irrefutable genius that was behind the 'bombe', the bit of kit that enabled the Enigma encryptions to be cracked, died in 1954 after taking his own life by cyanide poisoning. He was 41. For Alan Turing was a homosexual and had been prosecuted in 1952 for 'gross indecency' (in this case having a sexual relationship with another man). Found guilty, Turing faced the alternatives of prison or chemical castration, he chose the latter option and underwent injections of female hormones in order to knock out his libido lest he do it again!

Now I appreciate that at the time homosexuality was a criminal offence in Britain and whilst I believe (perhaps rather naively) that the law should be applicable to all, I also believe that under such exceptional circumstances higher authorities with a knowledge of his massive contribution in the war years should have intervened and somehow quashed the case against him. Alan Turing was after all a man whose actions (along with thousands of his colleagues) reduced the duration of the was by a minimum of 2 years (and some historians are now saying 4 years) and in doing so saved 100,000's of lives that would otherwise have been lost. That in my opinion is more than ample justification for any Government to bend the rules a little.

Alan Turing received a written apology from then Prime Minister, Gordon Brown, in 2009.

Big deal!

A brilliant mind
Alan Turing
1912-1954


In closing for anyone remotely interested in the history of WWII, mathematics, computing or just British eccentricity and tenacity please take the time to pay a visit to this extraordinary wreck of a place!

Sunday, 14 October 2012

Modern Eon Article - Smash Hits July 1981

A short interview that appeared in teen twice weekly UK magazine 'Smash Hits' on 9th July 1981. The occasion was the release of their 'Fiction Tales'. Modern Eon played support dates on the 'Meninblack Tour'.

Howard Devoto Talks Buzzcocks


Here's a short interview with Howard Devoto in which he discusses how Buzzcocks came together and his brief 10 gig tenure as their lead singer.

Here

''Scuse me, where's the Gents?'



20 From '80 (18) Magazine Melkweg, Amsterdam 8th June 1980

Howard Devoto

In my last 20 from '80 post I mentioned in passing Magazine. This band certainly had their moments of brilliance. With their 1978 debut album 'Real Life', Howard Devoto and Co. turned punk on its head by delivering up something that teetered on the brink of progressive rock! For sure in the shape of Barry Adamson and John McGeough they had two musicians of musical ability that was not far removed from the prog musicians that punk had swept aside in '76/'77.

Here's a short, but good quality radio broadcast from Amsterdam in the summer of 1980.

FLAC: https://rapidshare.com/files/1728634381/MagazineAmsterdam080680FLAC.zip

MP3: https://rapidshare.com/files/828489134/MagazineAmsterdam080680MP3.zip

01. Intro
02. I'm A Party
03. Permafrost
04. The Light Pours Out Of Me
05. You Never Knew Me
06. Thank You Falettinme Be Mice Elf Agin
07. Shot By Both Sides
08. Song From Under The Floorboards
09. Outro

Also in town on this night:

Devo   Rainbow, London
Adam & The Ants/Dave Berry & The Cruisers   Empire Ballroom, London

20 From '80 (17) Bauhaus SO36 Club Berlin 26th November 1980


Bauhaus were a strange band but typified well how, in the wake of punk, ideas got mixed and matched to produce something entirely new. For example, take elements of Bowie in his 'Thin White Duke' period, throw in a dash of Dave Vanian, run the mixture through a mangle and the result.... Pete Murphy.

I love Bauhaus and I have 95% of their stuff, however even so they were a band who could be rightly considered to take themselves a bit too seriously! Lyrically, they were capable of producing what could be described as pretentious twaddle!

'In the marbled reception hall I received a three band gold ring, from Mark. A token of esteem. Running through ghost closet locker rooms, to hide from Peter, who has fallen to the old cold stone floor, wheezing and emitting a seemingly endless flow of ectoplasmic white goo from ears and mouth. A wind rushes through the hall, whistles as it breezes through the narrow slits in the green locker doors. I hide in one of these, number thirteen'.
 
'Of Lillies and Remains' Bauhaus 1981
 
 
 
See what I mean!
 
On the other hand, Bauhaus were not without humour. The darkly dramatic 'A Spy In The Cab' when broken down is about a subject as mundane as a vehicle tachograph! Furthermore, when talking to a friend recently, who many moons ago had been in a band who supported Magazine and Bauhaus, he described the Northampton boys as being extremely gracious, even to the extent of tuning their guitars for them.
 
 
So here you have a soundboard recording from an early set from Berlin.
 
 
 
 
 

Bauhaus were certainly unique and would have adequately served the punk/new wave cause even if their recording career started and stopped with 'Bela Lugosi's Dead'.

'Undead! Undead!'
'Bela Lugosi's Dead'
Bauhaus
Riverside 1982
 


53 Degrees Club 14th October 2006


Here's an anniversary gig fron 2006's 'Suite XVI' tour. Nice sound and a great set!

FLAC: https://rapidshare.com/files/2469637478/preston53degree141006FLAC.zip

MP3: https://rapidshare.com/files/1957256140/preston53degree141006MP3.zip

1. Five Minutes
2. Grip
3. Spectre Of Love
4. Nice ‘N' Sleazy
5. Death And Night And Blood
6. Unbroken
7. Peaches
8. Always The Sun
9. Golden Brown
10. I Hate You
11. Lost Control
12. Summat Outa Nowt
13. Walk On By
14. Relentless
15. Threatened
16. Burning Up Time
17. All Day And All Of The Night
18. Thrown Away
19. Duchess
20. London Lady
21. Nuclear Device
22. Dagenham Dave
23. No More Heroes

Feel It Live in 2013!


Another year and another healthy tour (with Europe to follow I hope!). Roundhouse tickets are in (I didn't want a repeat of last year's problems!). The logistics of other gigs are currently under consideration.

Sunday, 7 October 2012

20 From '80 (16) Wreckless Eric Paris Theatre London 1980

Wreckless Eric

Here's a short set of an incomplete BBC Radio broadcast from the Corporation's Paris Theatre in London. Unfortunately the exact date is unknown but it is from 1980. Eric, a real eccentric and general Stiff misfit wrote some cracking songs in this period.

MP3: https://rapidshare.com/files/1254394691/wrecklessericparistheatre1980.zip

01. Broken Doll
02. Take The Cash (K.A.S.H.)
03. Hit & Miss Judy
04. Semaphore Signals
05. I Need A Situation
06. Back In My Hometown
07. Tonight (Is My Night)
08. Gonna Be A Hero
09. A Pop Song

20 From '80 (15) Stiff Little Fingers Keystone, Berkley CA 23rd October 1980


Stiff Little Fingers were very much in the ascendancy when they played dates in the US in 1980. With two classic punk albums under their studded belts they were on top of their game and ready to broaden their musical horizons.

Having been advised and encouraged by mentor and manager Gordon Ogilvie to commit to record their experiences as young disaffected punks trying to do what teenagers do, but in the midst of the devastating 'Troubles' that were in full flow at the time, the seminal 'Inflammable Material' and 'Nobody's Heroes' albums set out the band's stall.

From the third album 'Go For It', the political message was toned down and a different, yet still potent sound came to the fore. I recommend all of their albums!

Northern Ireland produced some of the best music of the late '70s/early '80s with the likes of SLF, Rudi and The Undertones, in spite of and perhaps as a result of the extraordinary experiences these bands had... the kind of stuff that most of us only ever saw on the 9 o'clock news.

FLAC: On its way!

MP3: https://rapidshare.com/files/3911655987/SLFPaloAlto1980MP3.zip

01. Gotta Gettaway
02. Back To Front
03. Fly The Flag
04. Doesn't Make It Alright
05. No Change
06. Mr Firecoal Man
07. At The Edge
08. Wasted Life
09. Suspect Device

Live in the UK this night:

Cockney Rejects   Brady's Liverpool
Killing Joke    Clarendon Hotel, London
Depeche Mode/Zeitgheist    Bridge House, London

TV Smith Wasted Festival 13th August 2006


As promised, in response to the excellent TV Smith related posts that have appeared on the 'Music Ruined My Life' blog, here is a more recent solo set from Tim, recorded at the prestigious UK punk festival 'Wasted'.

This is a nice sounding set of material that spans his long career from The Adverts to solo artist (even with a bit of Cheap in there!).

FLAC: https://rapidshare.com/files/3253562918/tvsmith130806FLAC.zip

MP3: https://rapidshare.com/files/911055913/tvsmith130806MP3.zip

Artwork: https://rapidshare.com/files/658015739/tvsmith130806AW.zip

01. Ready For The Axe To Drop    
02. Safety In Numbers    
03. What If?    
04. The Future Used To Be Better    
05. You Saved My Life Then Ruined It    
06. Only One Flavour    
07. Bring The Bull Down    
08. Immortal Rich    
09. My Place    
10. Bombsite Boy    
11. Gary Gilmore's Eyes    
12. Bored Teenagers    
13. One Chord Wonders    
14. Good Times Are Back

'My Place'
TV Smith with Garden Gang
Wasted Festival, Blackpool August 2006

Roskilde Festival, Denmark 4th July 1987

Flyer for the festival
(The Stranglers do not feature)

Baz Warne has enlightened us with a pretty detailed tour diary of the band's extensive festival schedule this year (here) and it seems that such dates may become a regular feature for the Stranglers in the next couple of years. But if anything, the festival circuit is more of a rediscovery for the band as they have always been there.

Here's an example from the well established Roskilde Festival in Denmark. I have included two sources here, the first of the full 21 song set and the second from an edited radio broadcast (actually the first 11 songs of the set). Both sets are included in each download folder.

FLAC: https://rapidshare.com/files/1659687476/Roskilde040787FLAC.zip

MP3: https://rapidshare.com/files/3137719365/Roskilde040787MP3.zip

Artwork: https://rapidshare.com/files/3901865969/Roskilde040787AW.zip

1. No More Heroes
2. Was It You?
3. Down In The Sewer
4. Nice In Nice
5. Punch And Judy
6. Souls
7. Always The Sun
8. Northwinds
9. Big In America
10. Nice"N"Sleazy
11. Who Wants The World
12. Bring On The Nubiles
13. Shakin' Like A Leaf
14. Uptown
15. Tank
16. Toiler On The Sea
17. Strange Little Girl
18. Spain
19. Duchess
20. Peaches
21. London Lady