I often lament the fact I didn’t see a certain band enough, or perhaps more specifically I didn’t see a band a certain point in time.
My example of this would be Placebo circa 1996. They were performing a set which consisted of songs from their second album, which wasn’t released yet, before they had even released the first. I never saw this, I was too young for starters, but Melody Maker gave me an insight. It wasn’t long before Brian was making all these grandiose gestures of “leaving a trail of spunk and blood” behind him, on their UK tour.
This I always thought, as a teenager who identified himself as an outsider, was cool. More than cool, a true underground thing. Digging beneath the surface of the band I find songs about books written by French authors, written whilst in prison. (Lady Of The Flowers – I bought the book from second hand book shop D’Arcy books in Devizes. I couldn’t get into the story.) and much more besides.
I rejoice at seeing Mansun at the peak of their career, in 98′. I saw them once more in 99′ at Reading, and then never again. I could perhaps of seen them more, and I lament the missed opportunity. It wasn’t until Reading 99′ that I saw 3 Colours Red, and their final show. They reformed, and I was BANG on that, but that too turned out to be my second and final time. I really regret not seeing them more.
I feel lucky to have seen Idlewild a lot. At regular intervals. As a rising, exciting band. As a band absolutely nailing it, and then on the way down. I decided to not watch them after they were boring. I have only seen Manic’s once, and frankly given their state now, it’ll stay that way. Glasto’ 99′ and they were amazing.
I guess what I’m saying is, if you have the chance to see it, see it before it goes, or more specifically, watch it as much as you can whilst it’s around – For me music is the best experience. Never take what makes you feel good for granted. If a band is in town, dig right in. You never know what you’re going to see, or quite possibly worse still, miss.
In December I have Gnarwolves coming to town. Sorry to single them out over all the shows I have coming up, because all my shows are exciting and cool – Otherwise I wouldn’t be doing them. With Gnarwolves though, there’s this feeling inside, that they’re on the cusp. An 8 page special in a huge circulatory national magazine kinda tells you there’s more to them than you’re average band. This is before they have a record out. Their first three 7″s are well and truly sold out, and I have them all.
They’re choosing to open their tour in the little back water town of Devizes. This is a big deal. We are first on a national UK tour. Their first head line tour. They have just slayed every god damn festival they’ve performed at, I would hazard a guess that a lot of you were at those festivals, whether you saw them or not.
They’ve written some very articulate songs based on books too, Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World with their songs “History Is Bunk” and “”Community, Identity, Stability”, and the dead obvious “Oh, Brave New World” There’s clearly more going on underneath the surface of the band, and if you’re a teenager, who identifies with being an outsider, then perhaps there would be a lot here for you to get into.
“Hepatitis is less infectious than Gnarwolves”