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, 24 January 2017

The Dickies The Fleece Bristol 2016

Sadly, I do not have a recording of this gig. I say sadly since it was one of the most notable gigs of my year. This visit to the fair city of Bristol doubled up as the family holiday of the year, a stay-cation as the young ones like to say (but no cheaper for certain!). The timing was such that our Saturday night happened to coincide with The Dickies being in Bristol, playing at the marvelous Fleece venue in the centre of town.

Now, in The Dickies we have a band that Gunta and I have talked up to the kids for years (they are now 15 and 18 but had yet to see them). Of the very many gigs I have been to, The Dickies are the only one of maybe two bands I have ever seen (on very many occasions) that have never put in a lacklustre performance. So as far as Rudi and Ramona were concerned our reputations were somewhat on the line that night. It therefore came as a real blow to learn not 24 hours ahead of the gig that the band would be Lenoardless, as the singer had landed himself a stay in Luton Hospital. The band however, with Leonard's blessing, made the courageous decision to press ahead with the remaining dates. Courageous indeed as Mr Graves-Phillips is a front man with a presence, not to mention a veritable arsenal of props from inflatable dolls to puppet penis and balls arrangement (otherwise known as Stuart).

Guitarist Stan Lee was ambling around the venue when he arrived and immediately won valuable brownie points with the kids when, midway through a conversation about his singer's condition, his attention was drawn to his phone alerted to the presence of a nearby pokemon... I really don't get it but it went down well with the kids!

Come showtime, the band exhorted the willing audience to help them along and merch man Ian was first out of the blocks. Dressed as the main man in the 'Where's Wally?' books he did a great job. Thereafter the set ran pretty much as expected with a host of local heroes 'doing their bit for The Dickies'. Including a man who we thought had a passing resemblance to Bryan Ferry! The gig was a complete success as far as I am concerned and the kids were not disappointed either. Having seen them so many times now, it was a privilege to be present at something that was just that bit different and all the more memorable for that.

I had never before seen then play 'Breaking The Law', a truly dreadful song by Judas Priest, but plausible once given The Dickies make-over or perhaps I should say, going-over.

As I said, I have no audio of these Summer European dates, but here are a couple of recordings from New York, with Leonard back at the helm, steering the ship, in his own inimitable style. Over two nights the band treated the audiences to full renditions of their first to A&M albums, 'The Incredible Shrinking Dickies' and 'Dawn Of The Dickies'.

01. Overture
02. Give It Back
03. Poodle Party
04. Paranoid
05. She
06. Shadow Man
07. Mental Ward
08. Eve Of Destruction
09. You Drive My Ape You Big Gorilla
10. Waterslide
11. Walk Like An Egg
12. Curb Job
13. Shake & Bake
14. Rondo (The Midgets Revenge)
15. (Break)
16. Hideous
17. I'm OK, You're OK
18. Welcome To The Diamond Mine
19. Golden Boys
20. Toxic Avenger
21. See My Way
22. Got It At The Store
23. Pretty Ballerina 
24. If Stuart Could Talk 
25. Gigantor 
26. (Encore Break) 
27. Nobody But Me
28. Banana Splits

01. Overture
02. Where Did His Eye Go
03. Fan Mail
04. Manny, Moe And Jack
05. Infidel Zombie
06. I'm A Chollo
07. Nights In White Satin
08. I'm Stuck In A Pagoda With Tricia Toyota
09. I've Got A Splitting Hedachi
10. Attack Of The Mole Men
11. She Loves Me Not
12. (Break)
13. Rosemary
14. Howdy Doody In The Woodshed/Paranoid
15. Welcome To The Diamond Mine
16. Golden Boys 
17. Toxic Avenger
18. See My Way
19. Got It At The Store
20. Oh Boy!
21. Pretty Ballerina 
22. If Stuart Could Talk 
23. Gigantor 
24. (Encore) Nobody But Me
25. Eve Of Destruction
26. Banana Splits 

No comments:

Post a Comment