Monday, April 30, 2007

Faces Smiling, Every One
Originally uploaded by davehodg.
Three Deep Purple gigs in three days is always hectic and this particular hurtle round the sea-sides and metropolis was no exception.

First stop Bournemouth in time for Purple's set. It's an all-seater, but the security clearly were on to a loser trying to stem the rush to the barrier, a nice little crowd-let formed and I spent the whole set on the rail dead centre. This is always a mixed blessing since it's nice to be up close but the sound is always dreadful, all drums and guitars, little bass and no keys. Most noteworthy though was the lighting: the biggest production The setlist had a disappointing two songs from the current album, but they're goodies and the rest of the set rattled along with the usual mix of classics and the occasional slight rarity. Afterwards we repaired to a nearby Wetherspoons for friendly libations with old and new friends.

Next up, Wembley Arena. Historically, Wembley arena has been a hateful venue: an echo-laden, soulless concrete barn with ignorant goons as stewards. Amazingly, only thing remaining are the goons. As part of the redevelopment of Wembley, the arena has been flipped so the back is now the front and vice-versa; somewhat disconcerting as the corridors are vaguely familiar yet disconcertingly veering off into
unfamiliar room and stairwells. The house staff were as lovely and helpful too. And as a bonus, there are now wandering minions with backpacks of cold lager for sale!

This time I made a point of seeing Thin Lizzy. Or should that be White Lizzy, what with Aldridge and Mendoza in the band? Either way, a jolly good rock and roll romp provided you leave your Lynott nostalgia at the door. John Sykes is a good front man and almost has the vocals
covered. His sparring with Gorham is great fun too. Recommended! Saw a fair chunk of Styx too, I can see they're very good at what they do but not having any history with the band, I found it tough to get

Finally, ten minutes early, the main act. Gillan introduces the show with "welcome to the shit-hole Wembley" or somesuch. I'm hoping he got to eat those words. He even went walkabout as the goons try to suppress the enjoyment but finally the crowd is allowed to get to its feet and jump around. Pretty much a sell-out and a GREAT show. I took a wander to see what the sound was like around the hall and it was amazing. Even Mr. Sykes in the sound area enjoyed a good chunk of the show.

Best. Deep Purple. Wembley Show ever.

Finally got back to my place at about four (thanks for the lift!) and up again at ten for the tortuous trek down through the Southern suburbs to the "Southern tip of Wardour St" aka Brighton.

Back on the rail for this, enjoy Lizzy hugely, stoke up on coffee during Styx then on snapping duties for the main event. Again, very, very good. Tight show, smiles all round, lots of dancing in the crowd. Some cheeky chop-stealing side-stage from a couple of members of the other bands. Bad Marco! Bad Lawrence!

All in all, possibly the best clutch of Purple shows I've ever seen. The production was excellent, performances tight, band relaxed and smiling and a good selection of friends old and new to sit and have *one* with afterwards. Special mention to the crew with "Bad Roadie! No Red Bull!" t-shirts.

Still smiling.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Bobby Anderson, Fortune Drive, The Fly, London

What can I say? Fantastic little show. Something like the the 15th time I've seen them (half as many times as I've seen Deep Purple but with fewer lineup changes!) and every time they get better in one way or another.

They also have this amazing personal chemistry. I've never seen a band act more like a family.

Lovely, lovely band.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

The Camden Crawl

Was 99% bollocks. Of course you had to queue for five hours, or camp in a venue where a can of Red Stripe was £3.50, to see the teaser headliners, and the rest were camp NME poster boys. I could name names but I'll spare their blushes. Just to say, for crying out loud, learn to play your instruments and playground chants do not a song make.


There was one salvation.

I never thought I would see a rap act at the Underworld much less like it. But it was so good I went to see him again the next night. Who provoked such madness? He's bad. He's Angry. It's....Akala.

It's bullshit.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Southgate, Bath

Southgate, Bath
Originally uploaded by davehodg.
OK, this is more like it. Gonzo wide angle, big blue sky and rubble. Lots of rubble.

Friday, April 13, 2007

14 Stone Penguin

Found on a post-it note at The Light bar lsat night: "14 Stone Penguin". This will be the first mention of it on Google.

Any guesses as so its significance?

Honourable mention to the shots girl with: "I had a cat called Dave. He smelled funny and wouldn't do as he was told."

Monday, April 09, 2007

Robinson Way - the endgame?

The latest letter from them finally makes the missing link: it's from a company I've had nothing to do with since the beginning of 2005.

Of *course* the reminder emails didn't get to me. I've not had that email address for OVER TWO YEARS.

Better still, had they gone to the company web site, the contact details are right there on the home page.

Do these people not have internet connections? You'd have thought they might be a tad more efficient at collecting money if they were switched on to this new fangled interwebs thing.

Chthonic to play Ozzfest - good news everybody!

Finally it's official: Chthonic are to play Ozzfest!

I've been sitting on this for a couple of weeks in case it all fell through but now it's confirmed. I feel a trip to the US coming on!

Thursday, April 05, 2007

Fortune Drive, Pete Roe, 100 Club

Pics from last night in the usual place:

Good time was had by all methinks!

Thanks to Pete for his album. It's AMAZING. Loving it! Makes a change from the metal crap I usually listen to. BUY THIS ALBUM!

And the FD's were panty-moisteningly good as usual.