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.


Thursday, 17 August 2017

Sunday, 13 August 2017

Oxegen Festival 13th July 2008


Okay, here's a gig from nine years ago, a short but great quality (soundboard) recording of the band at the Oxegen Festival in Ireland.

FLAC: https://we.tl/LvkrEkzTFF

01. Always The Sun
02. Peaches
03. Strange Little Girl
04. Golden Brown
05. Walk On By
06. All Day And All Of The Night
07. Something Better Change
08. Duchess
09. No More Heroes

Eastfield Victoria Inn Derby 13th August 2004


Here's an anniversary gig from Eastfield. This would have been around the time when my mate Chris was playing drums with them.

FLAC: https://we.tl/hR5uYHzyCO

01. Mannion
02. Fare Dodging
03. Broad Street Trash
04. Aspartame
05. Drive On Henry
06. Vic Bury
07. Revolution
08. Swayze
09. Pepper
10. Beast Of Bratislava
11. 47002
12. Henry Jackson
13. Bevland

Sunday, 6 August 2017

David Bowie Milton Keynes Bowl 5th August 1990


Here's another anniversary gig (well almost) from the late, great David Bowie. This was taken from his 1990 'Sound & Vision' tour. If I recall correctly this was the tour where he came up with the idea of the fans voting for what songs appeared in the tour set. 'The Laughing Gnome' was the runaway winner, but this was too much for Dave and the song never made it into the set!

Without Bowie and his undoubted musical genius, 90% of the bands who appear on these pages just would not exist.

FLAC: https://we.tl/S7xzUjkZIv

Artwork: https://we.tl/VIxaPBpxct

01. Intro
02. Space Oddity
03. Rebel Rebel
04. Ashes To Ashes
05. Fashion
06. Life On Mars
07. Blue Jean
08. Let's Dance
09. Stay
10. Ziggy Stardust
11. Station To Station

01. Station To Station (Continued)
02. Young Americans
03. China Girl
04. Suffragette City
05. Fame
06. Heroes
07. Jean Genie/Gloria
08. White Light/White Heat
09. Modern Love

Sunday, 16 July 2017

Adam and the Ants Cleopatra's Huddersfield 6th June 1980


Here's a gig from the revamped Ants. Here they played at Cleopatra's in Huddersfield, a date on Summer's 'Ants Invasion' tour. For some reason trouble had a habot of following the Ants from gig to gig. A friend in Hayes spoke of older acquaintances in the area who followed the band and they said that a fight was guaranteed. I recall talking to Tony Barber (ex-Buzzcocks) about our appreciation of early Ants stuff and he said the same thing about the violence that their gigs attracted. This gig is no exception, a fight breaks out in the crowd during 'Fall-in'. It must have been a significant punch-up as the police were called and the gig was abandoned.

Was anyone on here, there?

WAV: https://we.tl/BE6VkVsi2n

Artwork: https://we.tl/DTwNHArHgw

01. Physical (You're So)
02. Kings Of The Wild Frontier
03. Ants Invasion
04. Beat My Guest
05. Fall-In
06. Cleopatra
07. Kick!
08. Killer In The Home
09. Press Darlings
10. Tabletalk

The Robin 2 Bilston 15th July 2007


 I meant to post this yesterday, but beer got in the way! Here is an almost anniversary gig from the Midland, would you believe it, 10 years ago!

FLAC: https://we.tl/uRlRHqPE5u

Artwork: https://we.tl/iCDjP2Oxja

01. Intro
02. Toiler On The Sea
03. (Get A) Grip (On Yourself)
04. Spectre Of Love
05. Strange Little Girl
06. Unbroken
07. Peaches
08. Always The Sun
09. Golden Brown
10. I Hate You
11. Peasant In The Big Shitty

01. Lost Control
02. Thrown Away
03. Walk On By
04. Relentless
05. Burning Up Time
06. Straighten Out
07. All Day And All Of The Night
08. Duchess
09. London Lady
10. Nuclear Device
11. No More Heroes

The Stranglers at the Robin 2, Bilston
15th July 2007.

Saturday, 15 July 2017

20 From '84 (10) The Dickies Fender's Ballroom Long Beach CA 31st October 1984


And another from 1984....... Oh no! It's The Dickies! Run for your lives children.

FLAC: https://we.tl/FcKWhPAReb

Artwork: https://we.tl/YGVrDf06rh

01. Nobody But Me
02. Nights In White Satin
03. You Drive Me Ape (You Big Gorilla)
04. Pretty Please Me Walk Like An Egg
05. Doggy Doo
06. Tricia Toyota
07. Fan Mail
08. She’s A Hunchback
09. Saga Of Jim Bowie
10. Curb Job
11. Manny, Moe And Jack
12. Paranoid
13. Munster’s Theme/Monster Mash
14. Banana Splits

Dreamers Awake Exhibition

An exhibition has come to my attention entitled 'Dreamers Awake' at the White Cube Gallery (http://whitecube.com/exhibitions/dreamers_awake_bermondsey_2017/) in Bermondsey. Included in this exhibition is this iconic piece that is familiar to us all!

The exhibition runs to 17th September.

https://www.theguardian.com/artanddesign/2017/jul/14/linder-sterling-its-the-buzz-cock-two-fingered-salute-patriarchy

Monday, 10 July 2017

A One Off Missive by The DDL (Dickies Defence League)


'The Most Dangerous Band in America!' screamed one banner headline in the on-going, and most unexpected, punk rock furore surrounding veteran L.A. punk band The Dickies. This weekend the band enjoyed a brief respite from the controversy with a trip to the UK. I will not regurgitate the background here (just google The Dickes and it is there). Part of the discussion revolves around a concept of safe spaces at gigs. I was curious as to just what this meant, so I looked it up. The idea of safe spaces originated the UK in the educational arena and this I understand. It was intended to be a clear statement that in educational institutions that adopted the 'safe space' policy harassment based upon an individual's sexual orientation would not be tolerated. In the US, the concept is more closely aligned to the right of women to be free of sexual harassment. All fine by me. The thing that I question here whether or not a gig is an appropriate place to create such safe spaces.


Mates Chris and Laura at the Underworld
7th July 2017.

Compare and contrast. Attendance at schools is compulsory and whilst the vast majority of school kids are diligently going about the business of gaining a good education with which they can make a meaningful contribution to society in the years to come, a minority are arseholes who diligently behave in such a way as to make the lives of some a misery (my own kids have for many years had to contend with Nazi comments - they are one quarter German!. In this context, vulnerable children certainly deserve the protection that the safe space concept can offer. This is a very different scenario to a gig, an event attended by choice. The idea of safe spaces here makes little sense to me. In fact it seems to me to be another step towards the trend to abdicate the individual from personal responsibility in terms of one's own safety. At the front of a gig there will forever be a handful of sad, opportunist individuals who think that they can get away with groping someone. This is of course completely repugnant behavior and whilst I am not a violent person I have had it out with individuals who I have seen doing this. But, but, if a gig gets ugly or threatening, the most obvious thing to do is to move away to the sanctuary of an designated safe space. I have always found that the back of the hall or the bar serves this purpose very well.

Let me put this in terms of threats that I have faced (never having been groped at a gig). Over the years I have been to quite a few gigs where politically fueled violence has erupted in the crowd. In each and every case I have not protested my right to enjoy the gig unmolested by fascists.... I have always had the good sense to get the hell out of the way. I would consider this to be a case of taking personal responsibility for my safety. If we were to be accepting of the introduction of safe spaces at punk gigs (or any gigs for that mater) at what point do we draw the line..... tube carriages segregated along gender lines (for surely some of the highest incidences of sexual assault occur on crowded trains)?

So back to The Dickies. I have heard what Leonard said to the protester, it was wrong and as the man said himself 'it wasn't my proudest moment', but faced with some serious allegations, not least predatory sexual behaviour towards minors.... I guess one can loose it in such an outburst. I would say this, I have been seeing The Dickies since 1990 when they made a their first return to the UK in over a decade. Since then I have seen them many, many times and I have never been offended by them because I understand the music, the props, the humour, everything about their hugely entertaining sets. Last year I took my kids to see them in Bristol. At the time my daughter was 14 years old. Never did I have any second thoughts about the suitability taking her to such a gig.

On this tour with echoes of the Pistols shambolic 'Anarchy Tour' forty years ago, UK gigs started to get cancelled in response to what was being said on social media..... gigs in Leicester and Norwich were axed.

As many commentators on this issue have already said, rock 'n' roll, let alone punk rock, has been obsessed with sex since Bill Haley first stepped on stage and no aspect of human sexuality has escaped its attention....... Gary Puckett and the Union Gap anyone! I trust that Leonard and Co can quickly put this behind them and continue doing what they have been doing to the delight of thousands of fans for the last forty years.

Adrian, Gunta and Stan Lee
7th July 2017.





Saturday, 1 July 2017

Green Day Great Woods P.A.C. Mansfield Mass. 31st May 1998


Sommat's going down in Hyde Park today and sadly it I'm not there (a hernia operation on Tuesday put paid to that!). No, there's a gaggle of gnarly old punks gathering for what looks a little like a battle of the bands...... old punk versus 'new' punk. Topping the bill are Green Day and here is a radio broadcast from shortly after the release of their fifth studio album 'Nimrod'.

Good luck to SLF, The Stranglers and The Damned. To all that are their enjoy yourselves!

FLAC: https://we.tl/LZK7VhCBO3

01. Nice Guys Finish Last
02. Hitchin' A Ride
03. Geek Stink Breath
04. Welcome To Paradise
05. Longview
06. Iron Man
07. Master Of Puppets
08. Eye Of The Tiger
09. Brain Stew/ Jaded
10. Knowledge
11. Basket Case
12. She
13. King For A Day
14. When I Come Around
15. Good Riddance (Time Of Your Life)

20 From '84 (9) The Damned Nostell Priory Festival 24th August 1984


This was something of a watershed gig for our old friends, The Damned. It was the first gig without the good Captain at the wheel. Sir Sensible had abandoned ship, with the GLC benefit gig in Brockwell Park three weeks earlier being his last. The pressures of his unexpected successful solo career had mounted to the extent that the required commitment to The Damned was no longer possible. Roman Jugg stepped out from behind the keyboards to take up the vacant guitarist position.

1984 was certainly a tumultuous year in what had been a tumultuous carer to date for The Damned, however as yet unbeknown to the band, they would within the next 18 months achieve commercial success, the likes of which they had not seen up to then or indeed since.

MP3 (as received): https://we.tl/Q2W9AFGt3o

01. Love Song
02. Ignite
03. Disco Man
04. Wait For The Blackout
05. Stranger On The Town
06. Born To Kill
07. Do The Blitz
08. Nasty
09. Limit Club
10. Melody Lee
11. Neat Neat Neat
12. Looking At You
13. Smash It Up
14. Noise Noise Noise
15. New Rose
16. We Love You
17. Love Song
18. Thanks For The Night
19. Pretty Vacant

JJ Burnel and Baz Warne on BBC Radio 4's 'Loose Ends' March 2012


Here is a new one to me. Back in March 2012, JJ and Baz provided the musical portion of an episode of BBC Radio 4's 'Loose Ends' programme. Here then is an acoustic version of 'Boom Boom' followed by the briefest anecdote from Blur's Alex James concerning fellow cheese enthusiast, one Dave Greenfield. Thanks for the share!

MP3 (as received): https://we.tl/fII46hcdA4

Monday, 26 June 2017

Book Update


Good evening all! I just wanted to say a big thank you to all those who have purchased a copy of my book 'A Pithead Polar Bear' to date. I am really pleased with the way that the sales are going. So far, 108 books of the 150 print run are accounted for. It is quite something for me to think that this humble family history is to be found on the bookshelves of friends and colleagues in the UK, France, Belgium, Holland, Switzerland, America, Canada and Australia. Thank you one and all!

Adrian x

http://apitheadpolarbear.blogspot.co.uk/

Friday, 23 June 2017

The Skids The Junction Cambridge 15th June 2017


I was never their biggest fan, I just have half a dozen singles and a greatest hits, but I was very impressed with the way they played and RJ managed the proceedings with passion and humour. Dedications to the emergency services in London and to Stuart Adamson were heart felt and moving. Oh, and fair play to them for finishing off with a brand new song!

Many thanks to the original Dime uploader!

FLAC: https://we.tl/iHVErlJcdH

Artwork: https://we.tl/04wel98O0N

01. Animation
02. Of One Skin
03. Melancholy Soldiers
04. Thanatos
05. Dulce Et Decorum Est
06. Working For The Yankee Dollar
07. The Saints Are Coming
08. Scared To Dance
09. Charles
10. Olympian
11. Out Of Town
12. Hurry On Boys
13. A Woman In Winter
14. Circus Games
15. Masquerade
16. Into The Valley

01. Crowd
02. Charade
03. TV Stars
04. A World On Fire




Wednesday, 21 June 2017

20 From '84 (8) Dead Kennedys Pine Street Theatre Portland Oregon 16th October 16 1984


One now from the most important punk bands of all, the formidable Dead Kennedys. Here's a great sounding set from the band that features much material from their controversial, and ultimately career ending, album 'Frankenchrist'.

The trouble started in the States. Alternative Tentacles included with initial copies of the album a poster bearing the album's name against a backdrop of a piece of artwork by renowned artist H.R. Geiger. It is a piece that was always likely to court controversy, both in the US and indeed wherever the album was sold.


Many people literally saw their arse and this landed the DKs in the dock . I have some reports from the times of the trial that I will post at the weekend.

As an aside, when the album came out I was participating in a 24 hour darts marathon with mates, raising some money for charity. I asked my parents to go into town and by me the album. Luckily for me the distributors of the album in the UK made the decision to remove the poster from the sleeve prior to sale. Those wanting the complete package had to write to the label 'Alternative Tentacles' to claim their poster. This I duly did..... is it worth much!?

FLAC: https://we.tl/bvXqbvFWsn

01. Intro
02. Soup Is Good Food
03. Hellnation
04. This Could Be Anywhere (This Could Be Everywhere)
05. Chat
06. When You Get Drafted
07. Terminal Preppie
08. MTV Get Off The Air
09. A Child And His Lawnmower
10. Chat
11. Jock-O-Rama
12. Moral Majority
13. Chat
14. Kill The Poor
15. Chat
16. Macho Insecurity
17. Chat
18. Police Truck
19. Chat
20. Goons Of Hazard
21. Chat W\ Truckin’ Tease
22. Government Flu
23. Bleed For Me
24. Chat
25. Short Songs
26. Nazi Punks Fuck Off

Darts marathon, many moons (over Marin) ago.... the shorts indicate the age! (I'm on the right in the 'The Day The Country Died' shirt.... minus sleeves of course!

Remembering Corporal P. W. Pimlott 7th South Staffordshire Regiment Killed in Action 7th August 1944



As ‘A Pithead Polar Bear’ was in its final stages of preparation, I received an email requesting some assistance in providing information about the South Staffordshire Regiments in Normandy. The email came from Paul Simpson MBE, a retired warrant officer, who is researching the service of his great uncle, Corporal Peter W. Pimlott of the 7th South Staffords. As this enquiry neatly coincided with a planned return to Normandy I said that if at all possible I would visit Corporal Pimlott’s plot in the Banneville-la-Campagne cemetery and lay a Royal British Legion cross.


Corporal Pimlott was killed in action with the 7th South Staffordshire Regiment on 7th August 1944 in the Grimbosq bridgehead established in order to allow the 59th (Staffordshire) Division to cross the River Orne. He survived just 41 days in Normandy.


Yesterday I received an email from Paul with a photograph of his great uncle’s mounted medals.







Sunday, 18 June 2017

20 From '84 (7) Aural Sculpture Rough Mix Studio I.C.P. Brussels February 1984





 Thanks as ever to Eric!

WAV: https://we.tl/fnAuCAn8ts

20 From '84 (6) Newtown Neurotics Salle Dupres Blois 2nd November 1984


One for these fighting times from Harlow's finest, The Neurotics.

MP3 (as received): https://we.tl/IMoZxsh7A0

01. The Mess
02. Does Anyone Know Where The March Is?
03. My Death
04. No Respect
05. The Mind of Valerie
06. Suzi
07. Newtown People
08. Fighting Times
09. Agony
10. This Fragile Life
11. Creatures From Another World

Saturday, 17 June 2017

JJ Burnel Festival La Printemps De Bourges 6th April 1989


In 1989, JJ released 'Un Jour Partfait'. This coincided with Gunta and I coming together, so in many ways this became our album. As an album it has some wonderful songs, rather of its time but it gave a clear indication that a rather mellowed Jean Jacques was still capable of penning some great material.

This being an album predominantly in the French language, it was to France that our Gallic hero headed for a handful of dates with stallwarts, Dave Greenfield, Alex Gifford and John Ellis in tow. I had my passport in hand for one of these but to my eternal regret I did not go in the end.

As I said in an earlier post here's one for the Remainers then as we prepare the divorce papers. Many thanks to Eric for the great work!

WAV: https://we.tl/8kVYaaYR2k




Top Secret Volume 17 May 1989


As Brexit looms here is another issue of the wonderful Top Secret with a distinctly Continental flavour. Here.

Wednesday, 7 June 2017

A Pithead Polar Bear Now Available




Today I have taken delivery of 150 copies of ‘A Pithead Polar Bear – From Brighton to Belsen 1940 to 1946’.

If you would like a copy please message me and I will send on the necessary information. Alternatively, you can visit http://apitheadpolarbear.blogspot.co.uk/. All proceeds are to be donated to the 59th (Staffordshire) Division Association and the 49th (West Riding) Division Association. Both of these organisations provide invaluable support to our veterans and their dependents as well as ensuring that the sacrifices that these Divisions made continue to be remembered.

Cheers,

Adrian.

Thursday, 1 June 2017

20 From '84(5) The Anti-Nowhere League The Savoy London 1st March 1984


By 1984 punk was struggling, the anarcho scene lost its 'leaders'..... I know , I know, anarchists right, when Crass fulfilled their plan to disband in 1984. Street punks last roar, in the form of UK '82 had become rather out of date and in general the punk scene looked rather wan.

However, the bands were still gigging but another direction was called for. I remember being as jealous as hell when my mate Adam went to see The League in 1984. However, with the 'Out On The Wasteland' single of the time they were clearly looking to appeal to a more rock and power pop kind of audience.

Here they are live in London in March 1984.

WAV: https://we.tl/GTsiIUstz4

01. For You
02. Snowman
03. We Will Survive
04. Branded
05. The Last Dance
06. Queen And Country
07. Going Down
08. West Side Of Town
09. Streets Of London (Cut)
10. The Russians Are Coming
11. On The Waterfront
12. Let’s Break The Law
13. Can’t Stand Rock ‘N’ Roll
14. Let The Country Feed You
15. So What
16. Woman
17. We Are The League

Top Secret Volume 16 March 1989

 And the next one..... here.

The Damned Warsaw, Brooklyn New York 23rd May 2017

The Crown Prince surveys the Damned riff-raff from his throne.
USA May 2017.

Last moth The Damned played possibly their last major tour of the States and what a tour it was in many respects. It was huge and it was rather ill-fated. But being the punk rock troupers that they are the show.... or shows went on. Thanks to the original uploader!

Here is one of the few recordings to emerge from the tour.


01. Melody Lee
02. Generals
03. Disco Man
04. I Just Can't Be Happy Today
05. Alone Agian Or (Love)
06. Love Song
07. Machine Gun Etiquette
08. Street Of Dreams
09. Eloise
10. Stage Banter
11. Ignite
12. Stranger On The Town
13. Plan 9 Channel 7
14. Wait For The Blackout
15. History Of The World Part 1
16. New Rose
17. Neat Neat Neat
18. Encore Break
19. Stage Banter
20. Jet Boy Jet Girl
21. Nasty
22. Nights In White Satin (Excerpt)
23. Smash It Up Parts 1 & 2
24. Encore Break
25. Born To Kill
26. Stretcher Case Baby
27. Fan Club
28. Anti-Pope

Monday, 8 May 2017

'A Pithead Polar Bear' to be Published May


The waiting is nearly over. I have taken the plunge and sent ‘A Pithead Polar Bear’ off to the publishers so I can say with certainty that it will be available this month.

Details of how and where to get the book will follow in the next few days.

Many thanks,

Adrian.

Sunday, 23 April 2017

20 From '84(4) Killing Joke Hammersmith Palais 1st January 1984


As early in '84 as it is possible to go, here are the irrepressible Killing Joke doing what they do in the Hammersmith Palais. Thanks for the share!

WAV: https://we.tl/CcDgaVVwdX

01. Song and Dance
02. Empire Song
03. We Have Joy
04. Pssyche
05. Complications
06. Lust Almighty
07. Sun Goes Down
08. Requiem
09. Change
10. Eighties
11. The Pandys Are Coming
12. Wardance
13. Frenzy
14. The Fall of Because
15. Dominator
16. Tension
17. The Gathering

Monday, 17 April 2017

20 From '84(3) The March Violets BBC Radio 1 Saturday Live Session 18th December 1984

Cleo of The March Violets

Back in '84 Goth was at its peak and Andrew Eldritch and his happy go lucky troupe The Sisters of Mercy were the Royal Family of the movement. The Sisters never really gripped me, although I do intend to upload one of their gigs as a part of this thread.

Loosely associated with that scene but eminently less preposterous than their laugh a minute Leeds pals, The Sisters, were The March Violets. With both bands coming from Leeds, The Sisters of Mercy's own label, Merciful Release, oversaw the release of the early March Violets singles. Unfortunately, I never saw them, but mates of mine did. They played some great songs, but I am sure that part of the appeal of the band for us 15 year old boys was the fact that they were fronted by a rather striking lady called Cleo.

So here is a short blast in the form of a session recorded for Radio 1's Richard Skinner at the end of the year.


01. Snake Dance
02. Face Of The Dragonfly
03. Deep