Friday 22 November 2013

Tonbruket and Ane Brun at The Kentish Town Forum November 14th

Tonbruket - Photo by Steve Worrall
Following the split of The Soundtrack of Our Lives in December last year, it hasn’t taken long for some of the band members to get right back into their stride with new projects that in a way, probably suit their musical backgrounds even better. For example, Mattias Bärjed’s unabashed love for Seventies Heavy Rock is given full vent in his new band Free Fall, and when Retro Man Blog reported on their first U.K. show back in February here, you could sense that, although TSOOL was always a very fluid and eclectic band, Mattias was just loving the chance to let loose and “Rock Out”! On the other hand, keyboard player Martin Hederos came from very much a studious, classical music background, but the two very different characters ended up in the Karlstad based Nymphet Noodlers together and Martin's style took the short-lived band off into a sort of free-form Rock ‘n’ Roll. That's not to say the band were meandering Prog Rock by any means, as they always retained that Stooges like edge and unpredictability to their sound, but they had a groove and a fluidity to their music. When Martin went on to join The Soundtrack of Our Lives (to be followed later by his Noodlers' colleague Mattias Bärjed), his classical grounding brought a whole other depth and dimension to TSOOL’s sound. He could veer from the full-on 60’s "Nuggets" Garage Rock style Hammond organ on the Psychedelic Punk of songs like “Galaxy Gramophone” and before switching track completely to add intricate harpsichord or beautifully minimalist Erik Satie style piano on ballads such as “Tonight” and “Song For The Others”. 

Martin Hederos & Dan Berglund of Tonbruket - Photo by Steve Worrall
Hederos also became more than just a highly sought after session musician and orchestral arranger, and more of a collaborator, evident in his successful partnerships with his ex-Nymphet Noodlers front man Mattias Hellberg, under the name Hederos & Hellberg and also with the singer Nina Ramsby. One really telling example of his skill as a musical arranger, in my view, was his impressive work on the Swedish Weekend at La Gaite Lyrique in Paris last year, where he not only played a full set with The Soundtrack of Our Lives but also performed two shows with Peter von Poehl, one with his full band and then one in a more laid back acoustic set-up. Hederos also played a quite stunning set with the superb French singer songwriter, Marie Modiano, whose band featured the equally busy and versatile drummer Ludwig Dahlberg from Free Fall. Tonight, Hederos pulls off another similar feat, although crammed into just one evening’s entertainment – appearing as support with his current band Tonbruket who then provide the majority of headliner Ane Brun’s backing band.

Ane Brun - Photo by Steve Worrall
The two acts are currently out together on a tour promoting Brun’s new compilation album "Songs 2003-2013", released to celebrate her 10 years in music. Martin has previously appeared on some of Ane Brun’s recordings and tonight he not only excels on keyboards and piano, but also contributes violin and accordion. I think of the Velvet Underground's John Cale and the way he switches  between instruments, influences and genres. When Brun graciously left the stage at the end of her main set to allow each of her band members to play on a bit and then depart one-by-one to take the crowd’s acclaim, it was no surprise that the very last person to leave was Hederos to a rapturous round of applause. It was the first time I had seen Ane Brun perform and had not heard much of her music before, but I was captivated by her set of emotional and organic folk songs. Songs which seemed to be made even more naturalistic by the huge backdrop of the rings of an ancient tree, her flowing pagan/druid-like white dress and the glowing Scandinavian lanterns scattered around the stage, it was all lapped up by the packed out Forum crowd with enthusiasm. I will certainly investigate Ane Brun's music further after tonight's show.

Tonbruket - Photo by Steve Worrall
Before that, Tonbruket played an impressive support slot, the band were formed by Dan Berglund, the double bass player with the popular Swedish nu-Jazz outfit E.S.T. or Esbjörn Svensson Trio, who came to a sudden and untimely halt due to the tragic death of Svensson in a scuba diving accident in 2008. Then in 2009 Berglund recruited Johan Lindström, one of Sweden’s best exponents of slide guitar, Martin Hederos on keyboards and Andreas Werliin on drums and percussion to put his combined loves of Rock Music and Jazz together in one band. Tonight, swathed in dense single colour lights, the band are almost only visible as silhouettes against the swirling dry ice. Although Tonbruket are labelled mainly as a Jazz band, no doubt due to Berglund’s E.S.T. career, I think they are out there in a pretty unique field of their own. I’m not a Jazz fan so it’s difficult for me to reference where they might be coming from, as to me they are sometimes more like an avant-garde instrumental Rock band, with echoes of Y.M.O. or some of David Sylvian's more atmospheric work.

Martin Hederos - Photo by Steve Worrall
Sure, there are lots of intriguing passages from each of the highly talented band members, who all contribute equally to the mix. But at times Tonbruket can also crank out a menacing motorik beat that reminds me of Krautrock bands such as Neu! and Can, driving some pieces along with a powerfully hypnotic groove. Unlike a lot of Jazz bands they understand the dynamics of “less-is-more” and sometimes allow things to drop out almost completely, giving the music space and atmosphere. They seem to be as much influenced by the expansive Psychedelic Rock of Pink Floyd or the experimental side of Radiohead, as much as they are by Jazz. In fact I once read someone saying that Berglund played the double bass like Jimi Hendrix which made me smile, but he certainly wrings out some impressive sounds and nimble bass runs from the cumbersome looking instrument. Having just got back from Berlin, at one point I’m immediately transported back there by a thundering drum-beat reminiscent of Iggy’s lurching “Nightclubbing”, and there are certainly strains of the Berlin-era Bowie and Iggy, of “Low” and “Heroes”, of “The Idiot” and “Lust For Life”. It was a relatively short set, but mightily effective and very well received by an appreciative audience. After the show I noticed a fair few of their CD’s being snapped up at the merchandise stall, and I imagined that these people were going to get a bit of a headache if they like to file their albums by genre, as Tonbruket are certainly a tough band to categorize!

Ane Brun - Photo by Steve Worrall
Tonbruket's new album "Nubium Swimtrip" is out now on ACT Records. For more information on the band please check out their official web-site here. Thanks to Martin Hederos. For more photos please head on over to the Retro Man Blog Facebook page, hit "Like" for access to the Photo Album.

Monday 18 November 2013

TV Smith: Punk Rock Tour Diaries Volume 4: "To Heligoland and Beyond!"

TV Smith has just released the fourth volume of his Punk Rock Tour Diaries via Arima Publishing. It's another amusing and entertaining travelog in the company of the inspirational and likeable ex-Adverts vocalist. This is a world of Rock 'n' Roll that is as far away from huge tour buses and luxury hotels as you can get. It's a world of sleeping on floors in damp and freezing cold back rooms of venues. Relying on lifts, local buses and ferry boats where ice strewn footpaths can wreak havoc on your luggage and your timetables. There is the poignantly named Old Punks Festival in the Czech Republic and a gig among the sand dunes in the remote island of Heligoland. There are encounters with hi-tech Japanese toilets in Tokyo and dangerous crack alleys in Brazil. There are battles with unmanned budget hotels and their baffling entry codes, and with mosquitoes in Finland. Along the way we meet some characters that keep it all rolling along, Vom from Die Toten Hosen, The Tokyo Adverts and Jay Reatard amongst many others. So, grab a copy of this highly entertaining book, buy it for a loved one for Xmas and follow TV as he travels the world, armed only with his guitar, a bag of clothes, a bundle of CD's and an emergency sandwich. The book is available through the TV Smith official web-site here. Otherwise you will be able to get a copy at our gig for TV Smith at the Railway Hotel in Southend-on-Sea on Saturday December 07th. I am sure TV will be happy to sign a copy too. For more details on the gig please check out this link here.

You can hear TV Smith talking to us about his on-the-road experiences, along with an in-depth look back over his musical career, in our very special Retrosonic Podcast. This episode is soundtracked with many pivotal songs from The Adverts, Cheap, The Explorers and of course his extensive solo back catalogue. It also includes an exclusive acoustic session live from the Retrosonic HQ!

Sunday 17 November 2013

Jane Birkin "Arabesque" live at the Barbican November 09th

Jane Birkin at the Barbican - Photo by Steve Worrall
There were, let’s face it, many ladies in Serge Gainsbourg’s life, both professional and personal, but surely there were none more important than his most enduring muse, Jane Birkin. The couple originally met in 1968 on a film set, when following her appearances in Swinging Sixties movies such as “Blow Up” and “Wonder Wall”, she won the part to play opposite Gainsbourg in “Slogan”. She was just twenty years old and getting over her split from movie composer John Barry. Serge was heartbroken after the end of his relationship with Brigitte Bardot, but from the aftermath of this affair came the song "Je T'Aime…Moi Non Plus", which Bardot refused to have released. Serge thought that Jane Birkin would be perfect to supply the breathlessly erotic vocals on the recording, which was destined to become a classic, and from then on the rest is history as they say. Although Birkin and Gainsbourg never married, and their relationship lasted less than fifteen years, it seems to most of us as though they were always together and tonight here at a packed out at the Barbican Centre, she paid him a remarkably emotional, uplifting and truly entertaining tribute. 

Jane Birkin at the Barbican - Photo by Steve Worall
This show was the only U.K. date on the tour to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the release of the highly ambitious and original “Arabesque” album. It was recorded live and released simultaneously with a DVD of the performance, “Arabesque” saw Jane Birkin paying tribute to the songs of Serge Gainsbourg in a pretty unique way. Totally avoiding the route of playing cover versions straight or with modern pop or rock arrangements, Birkin got together with the hugely talented Algerian violinist and arranger Djamel Benyelles to reinterpret some of Serge’s songs in an exotic North African Maghreb style. Jane had already revisited and re-worked a collection of Gainsbourg’s songs on her 1996 covers album “Versions Jane”, some of which make their way into the “Arabesque” set. But this is a totally different matter all together and at first, what seemed to me like a rather strange concept, actually works far better than I could have imagined.

Jane Birkin at the Barbican - Photo by Steve Worrall
Anyway, Gainsbourg had always swooped between various genres and World music styles – from the Mambo and Latin rhythms of “Couleur Café” to authentic Reggae on his excellent “Aux Armes etc.” album, which featured Sly & Robbie and Rita Marley. Tonight, Djamel and his excellent band “Djam & Fam”, comprising Fred Maggi on piano and keyboards, Azziz Boularoug on percussion, Zakaria Masrour on lute and Mohammed Zerouki on some excellent vocals, all providing a bewitching and stunning musically exotic backdrop for Birkin’s light vocals to float over.

Jane Birkin at the Barbican - Photo by Steve Worrall
Taking a diverse selection of Gainsbourg compositions from all periods throughout his career, and often not the most well known it must be said, Birkin picks songs that suit the new arrangement and provide a rewarding experience even for those of us who do not speak French. I’d really love to be able to appreciate Gainsbourg’s lyrics and wordplay but tonight it’s like watching a very high quality foreign language movie without the subtitles – I could certainly appreciate the sound and the visuals, the atmosphere and emotion, but I just don’t know the words! For this Birkin, Benyelles and Djam & Fam must be applauded. So we are treated to songs from the 1969 “Jane Birkin/Serge Gainsbourg” album, their first together, such as “Élisa” to “Et Quand Bien Même” from Birkin’s 1990’s solo album “Amours Des Feintes”, Serge’s very last batch of songs he wrote for her before his death in 1991. There are early Serge songs such as “La Chanson de Prévert” from” L'Étonnant…” and the classic “Ces Petits Riens” which was also recorded by Juliette Gréco and the actress Catherine Deneuve. There’s just the one song, “Valse de Melody” from one of my all time favourite albums, “Histoire de Melody Nelson”, which starts off with Mohammed Zerouki's atmospheric Muezzin style chanting that segues into Jane's voice, it's a wonderful moment. 1983’s “Baby Alone in Babylon” is well represented – probably because Serge wrote the songs on this album for Jane after their split, so I would imagine the emotional resonance in the lyrics must be very strong.

Jane Birkin at the Barbican - Photo by Steve Worrall
There was a moving moment when she kneels on the floor to read a poem written by her nephew Anno, himself a musician, who tragically died aged only 20 in a car crash in 2001. After a couple more songs, Jane leaves the stage and Djam & Fam play one of their own compositions, the jaunty instrumental “She Left Home”, after which she returns in a flowing bright red dress, as seen on the cover of the "Arabesque" album. Then comes one of the highlights of the night for me and the up-tempo “Les Clés du Paradis” from the solo album “A La Legere”, which lights up the Barbican wonderfully. Birkin loosens her hair and lets herself go – lost in the music. It’s totally natural and unselfconscious and the crowd warm to her even more. Then it’s one of those songs that I always believed defined that bridge between the more traditional French chanson and the swinging Yé-Yé scene, “Comment Te Dire Adieu”, although ironically it wasn’t actually a French composition originally. Françoise Hardy heard it and asked Gainsbourg to write some lyrics in French for her and from then on it has probably become one of her most popular tracks, but tonight Jane Birkin adds her own distinct take on this much covered classic.

Jane Birkin at the Barbican - Photo by Steve Worrall
The final encore sees Jane alone on the stage and she delivers an emotional acapella version of “La Javanaise”, originally written for Juliette Gréco and surely one of Gainsbourg’s best loved songs. Suddenly people around me are singing along, some very confidently and loudly in French. I know I wasn’t the only one in the crowd to mumble away self-consciously through the verses before belting out the familiar words of the chorus in what I assumed sounded like fluent French; at least that’s what I assumed! It was a lovely moment anyway, the crowd sharing in Jane’s genuine outpouring of affection and there were, I am sure, quite a few lumps in throats and tears in eyes.

Jane Birkin & Djam & Fam take a bow - Photo by Steve Worrall
For more photos of the Barbican show please head on over to the Retro Man Blog Facebook page and hit "Like" for access to the Photo Album. You can see some photos from our previous feature on Serge Gainsbourg's house here and for some other music related locations in Paris, please check out the feature here. For more info please check out the excellent official Jane Birkin web-site.

Wednesday 13 November 2013

Cyanide Pills - Damaged Goods Records Party at The 100 Club November 04th with Talulah Gosh & Helen Love

Cyanide Pills by Paul Slattery
"The journey to the 100 Club was epic. The van broke down at 3am eight miles from Dieppe Ferry Port. 3 recovery vehicles, 2 missed ferries, 1 hire car & 16hrs later we arrived at the 100 Club an hour before we were due to play..." That's taken from the Cyanide Pills' Facebook page posted up the day after the gig on November 04th. Hard to believe, as the band had put on an excellent show bursting full of energy and spirit. Just after their set, I'd heard the story from bassist Al and road manager Paul, who explained how they barely made it to this special night to celebrate 25 years of Damaged Goods Records and 50 years of label boss Ian. You would never had guessed it but they must have been exhausted, and I suppose they just put all the frustration into the performance as they crashed straight into "Waiting For Nightfall" and didn't let up for one second.

Cyanide Pills by Paul Slattery
The brilliant "Break It Up", with its naggingly catchy guitar riff is followed by one of their more salacious songs, the almost Zodiac Mindwarp cartoon naughtiness of "Cheap 'n' Nasty". "Making Her Mind Up" is a track that the Buzzcocks would be proud of, as it captures their sense of timeless melody with buzzing guitars and a skewed sense of cynical romance. In "Johnny Thunders Lived In Leeds" from their latest album "Still Bored", they cross the Atlantic for their influence and do a decent take on the New York Dolls sound, with some very amusing lyrics, "I'm a Yorkshire Man, not a New York junkie...!" must go down as one of the best lines in Punk Rock.

Cyanide Pills by Paul Slattery
"Conquer The World" with it's tale of a jilted lover going on the rampage is a real treat but it's the next track, "Non-Believer" that is probably my highlight of the evening. A perfect Power Pop Punk nugget that steamrollers along on a superb chorus. Cyanide Pills zoom through various Punk Rock influences throughout the ages, from the echoes of The Damned's first album on "Shallow" to The Briefs on the new single "Apathy", but they manage to retain their original edge, mainly thanks to their undoubted knack with a damn fine tune. The brilliantly witty "Mail Order Bride" is followed by the singalong "Where Did It Go?" and the set ends with "Suicide Bomber", which could almost be called their signature tune, as it crams the essence of the band into two minutes of humour, melody and energy perfectly. As their Damaged Goods Record label boss Ian told us in our special Retrosonic Podcast, the Cyanide Pills are "pure genius", and he should know...he signed them!

Damaged Goods Records boss (and Birthday Boy) Ian by Paul Slattery
Ian also had two of his favourite Damaged Goods acts on the bill, Talulah Gosh and Helen Love who both went down a treat with their fans - and everyone left smiling and buzzing after a great night's entertainment. Please don't forget to check out the other great bands on the Damaged Goods Rosta here, including their stunning collection of coloured 7" vinyl releases. 

Talulah Gosh by Paul Slattery
Helen Love by Paul Slattery
You can hear Ian talking about the Damaged Goods label and playing some of his favourite and most important releases, including songs from Billy Childish, Manic Street Preachers, Thee Spivs, Graham Day, Giuda, Thee Headcoates and Pete Molinari and, of course, Cyanide Pills, in our two part Retrosonic Podcast series, Part 1 is here, and Part 2 can be found here.

Thanks to Ian and to Paul Slattery for the excellent photos. Here's a video of Cyanide Pills at the 100 Club with "Conquer The World", for more videos check out the Retro Man Blog YouTube channel.

Sunday 10 November 2013

TV Smith returns to The Railway, Southend-on-Sea December 07th with Eight Rounds Rapid & DJ's Mondo & Piley

TV Smith, the legendary voice of The Adverts, returns to one of his favourite U.K. venues, The Railway Hotel in Southend-on-Sea on Saturday December 07th. This will be our third joint promotion at The Railway with Retro Man Blog, Podrophenia and the Southend Punk Web-site, and is promising to be another great night as we are very pleased to announce that support comes from the excellent Eight Rounds Rapid. After the live music, Podrophenia DJ's Mondo & Piley will be playing their usual eclectic mix of Psych, Punk, Soul and unexpectedly funky TV themes. The Railway Hotel is located at Clifftown Road, Southend-on-Sea, Essex SS1 1AJ. For more info call 01702 343 194.

Photo by Paul Hughes
You can check out a review of our first gig with TV Smith at The Railway back in June 2012 on the Blog here, and the second one in November last year here. Both reviews feature excellent photographs from Paul Slattery, Paul Hughes, Sophie Lo and Eric Waring.

Don't forget our very special Retrosonic Podcast with TV Smith which features an exclusive four song acoustic session live in the Retrosonic Studio.

"TV Smith, the legendary voice of The Adverts and hugely respected solo performer, joins us (Steve from Retro Man Blog, Rock photographer Paul Slattery and Adam from The Jetsonics) in the Pod to discuss his influential career and play an exclusive four song acoustic session. From early gigs on the edge of Dartmoor with his first band Sleaze to playing the Roxy with The Adverts at the very beginning of the Punk Rock explosion. From appearing on Top of The Pops, the end of The Adverts and his following bands Cheap and The Explorers, to his reinvention as an acoustic Punk Rock troubadour, TV brings us right up to date to the release of his latest album “Coming Into Land” and the publication of his excellent “Punk Rock Tour Diaries”, which cover his adventures as a travelling solo performer armed only with a guitar, a suitcase and an emergency sandwich".

Thanks to Fi and Dave at The Railway, Dave and Ian, Steve Pegrum and Paul Hughes.

Retrosonic Podcast Episode 11 "I Send My Love And a Molotov Cocktail too..."

Steve from the Retro Man Blog reports back from The Len Price 3's new album "Nobody Knows" showcase party at the Half Moon, Putney. Featuring tracks from all four bands who appeared on the night - The Travellers, The Past Tense, The Fallen Leaves and a brand new Len Price 3 track. There were as many musicians in the crowd as on stage, so Steve picks out some of their bands to say thank you. We have The Aardvarks, The Onlookers, The Transients, Robby Allen & The Kite Collectors and The SuperMinx '70 - plus new tracks from The Ace, The Loop and Dirt Royal and a run out groove by The Chris Casey Combo '66. Please do take the time to click on the highlighted links and check out more info on the featured bands.

For a full report on The Len Price 3 at The Half Moon, including an extensive review, videos and exclusive Paul Slattery and Zig Criscuolo photographs, please click here. You can also listen to the Podcast or download for free at our Retrosonic Podcast Soundcloud site. Hope you enjoy it!

Sunday 3 November 2013

The Len Price 3, The Fallen Leaves, The Past Tense and The Travellers at the Retro Man Blog Night, October 25th

The Len Price 3 at The Half Moon - Photo by Paul Slattery
Our latest Retro Man Blog night was at The Half Moon Putney on Friday October 25th for the official showcase party of The Len Price 3's forthcoming new album "Nobody Knows". We were delighted to have the album on sale at the gig exclusively prior to it's official 2014 release on CD and a glorious Deluxe Vinyl edition. The Len Price 3 were joined by very special guests The Fallen Leaves and The Past Tense and we were also pleased to have The Travellers, the St. Malo based band, who opened up the show with a short acoustic showcase of their own, to promote their brand new single "Stay".

The Travellers, Robert & Gemma - Photo by Paul Slattery
The Travellers were over in the U.K. to play a gig at the Fiddler's Elbow in Camden the next day with their full line-up, so it was great that Gemma and Robert could come along and start off the gig in real style. They started off with the beautiful soul ballad "Can't Stop Loving You" and then played both sides of the just released single, the stunning "Stay" and equally impressive "Don't Look For Me". They ended on a spontaneous run through of "Summer With No Sun", which is in the running for Retro Man Blog's best single of 2013, and the set closed to appreciative murmurs about Gemma's wonderful voice. "Stay" is out now on green 7" vinyl, so check out their site for more details.

The Past Tense - Photo by Paul Slattery
Next up were our regulars The Past Tense and they put on a great show, also showcasing two new songs, "Remember The Days" and "What's Coming Next?" from their forthcoming split E.P. with The Loop. Warren and Ken again proved they are probably the best rhythm section on the scene at the moment, with some truly outstanding Keith Moon style drumming during the Quadrophenia tribute "Jimmy's Love Song". Singer and guitarist Andy, slashed away aggressively at his new guitar with that idiosyncratic left handed style of his and as always, looked a little bit bashful at the noisy and appreciative reception from the crowd at the end of their quite excellent set.

The Fallen Leaves - Photo by Paul Slattery
Well, what can I say about The Fallen Leaves that I haven't already said many times on the Blog recently, they are quite simply the best live act around at the moment. The Half Moon certainly seems to bring out the best in them too, and they put in a faultless display on how to pace and build a set to a perfect crescendo, ending with the Garage Rock epic "Trouble" as a well deserved encore. Their stage show is laced with their own brand of laconic humour. Vocalist Rob Green has the art of holding a crowd's attention down to a fine art, if it's not his elaborate English country gent act of nonchalantly blowing smoke rings from his e-cigarette to checking his antique pocket watch it's the set's showpiece, his tea ceremony with a thermos flask.

Rob Green of The Fallen Leaves takes a tea break - Photo by Paul Slattery
Rob Symmons of The Fallen Leaves - Photo by Paul Slattery
"These are simple songs for complex people" he announces and powerhouse drummer William Lewington cracks another set of drumsticks. It's dangerous at the front of a Leaves gig - after his burst of harmonica during "Passing By", bassist Matthew Karas flings the mouth-harp across the stage. But it's Rob Symmon's bashing and contorting of his guitar that tops it all. A truly unique and underrated guitarist, as he twists yet more impossibly catchy riffs from his Fender. Two new songs are played tonight including the excellent "Prodigal Son" and I'm already looking forward to a new album impatiently. The Fallen Leaves continue their "Minimum R'n'B" club night residency at the 12 Bar this Wednesday November 6th with support from The Past Tense, so if you enjoyed these two acts you won't have long to wait to see them again!

The Len Price 3 backstage before the show - Photo by Paul Slattery
So, finally...the long-awaited return of The Len Price 3 to the Half Moon stage to promote their equally long-awaited fourth album "Nobody Knows" and the anticipation was building in the venue. The band kicked off with three tracks from the new album "Words Won't Come", which has actually featured in their set for quite a while now, then the Punky singalong of "Billy Mason" and then one of the album's highlights, "My Grandad Jim". We're back on familiar territory with the classic "Rentacrowd" and it's scathing put down of trendy hipsters north of the river in Hoxton and Shoreditch. Then another new one "Preying Mantis" and the instrumental cover version of "Comanche!" Has everyone singing along, well it's not difficult to remember the words...

The Len Price 3 - Photo by Paul Slattery
"Swing Like a Monkey" from the new album is excellent but then they throw a curve ball by dropping in "Shirley Crabtree" straight afterwards, this is usually their traditional stage invasion inspiring encore, but they plough on with "Wigmore Swingers" and it's tale of suburban naughtiness and follow that with a storming "Christian In a Desert". The pace is slowed down a bit with "Lonely", which is similar in style to their last single "Mr. Grey" and shows that the band are not afraid to put the brakes on occasionally. "After You're Gone" and the storming title new album track "Nobody Knows". The crowd go crazy during "Pictures" and "You Tell Lies" and the band then treat us to "The London Institute", the last song on the new album, which I think it will go down as one of the defining songs in The Len Price 3's hugely impressive catalogue. It hints at even better things to come from the band. Storming encores leave the band strewn across the Half Moon stage, exhausted and happy and so are the crowd judging form the rapturous applause.

The Len Price 3 in action - Photo by Paul Slattery
The Len Price 3 - Photo by Paul Slattery
After the show we had a P.A. play-back of "Nobody Knows" and the band chatted with fans and signed copies of the album. The official release date is not yet fixed, but keep a check on the Blog and we will be sure to let you know as soon as we get the details. We also ran a little competition on the night, the first 30 people through the venue doors got the chance to have a rummage in our Len Price 3 button badge bag. All 30 got to keep their "Nobody Knows" badge exclusive to the launch party, and then one person who pulled out the special "lucky badge" won a great prize of a signed vinyl deluxe edition copy of "Nobody Knows", a Travellers 12" vinyl E.P. and CD, plus CD's from The Fallen Leaves and The Past Tense. I sincerely hope that Ann, the lucky winner is enjoying her prize!

The Len Price 3 - Photo by Paul Slattery
The Len Price 3 - Photo by Paul Slattery
Thanks to everyone that came along on the night, we were just four people short of selling out the venue so that was really encouraging. I'd also like to thank, for the much appreciated support for the gig, the following Radio shows and Podcasts. I'm a big fan of all of these shows so it is really nice to get a mention! Please do check them out, click the links, follow, subscribe and listen in...

Andy Morten and Jon Mills at Shindig! Magazine - Broadcast #2

Wayne Lundqvist-Ford at Radio Andra - The Ice Cream Man Power Pop Show #3

Alan May at 6Towns Radio - Glory Boy Radio Show

Warren Peace at We Are The Mods - Episode #30

Here are some more photos of the gig from Zig Criscuolo of The WitchDoktors...

The Past Tense - Photo by Zig Criscuolo
Rob Green from The Fallen Leaves - Photo by Zig Criscuolo
Bill Lewington of The Fallen Leaves - Photo by Zig Criscuolo
Matthew Karas of The Fallen Leaves - Photo by Zig Criscuolo
The Len Price 3 - Photo by Zig Criscuolo
The Len Price 3 - Photo by Zig Criscuolo
The Len Price 3 - Photo by Zig Criscuolo
With many thanks to Paul Slattery - the only photographer who can play air guitar and take photos at the same time - and to Zig Criscuolo, from the excellent WitchDoktors, for the great photos. For more photos of the gig please head on over to the Retro Man Blog Facebook page and hit "Like" for access to the exclusive photo album...All photos strictly copyright as stated in the captions. Here is a video of The Len Price 3 with "Pictures" recorded on the night. There are also more videos of all the bands at our Retro Man Blog You Tube Channel, please check them out here.

You can hear a brand new Len Price 3 track from the new album "Nobody Knows" in this special Episode of our very own Retrosonic Podcast, along with tracks from all the bands who appeared, both off stage and in the crowd, it's free to download from our Retrosonic Soundcloud site...Enjoy!

Saturday 2 November 2013

The WitchDoktors and The Phobics at The Camden Barfly October 4th - Exclusive Paul Slattery Photos

The WitchDoktors at the Barfly - Photo by Paul Slattery
The first week of October started off with two excellent shows, first of all The Fallen Leaves and their regular "Minimum R'n'B" club night at the 12 Bar, which saw the band put in one of their best performances I have seen from them this year. Then on Friday the 4th, we had the enticing line-up of The Phobics and The WitchDoktors supporting The DeRellas at the Camden Barfly. Rock photographer Paul Slattery took some great photos, so we thought we'd share them on the Blog.

The Phobics (above) by Paul Slattery
The WitchDoktors Andy and Tony by Paul Slattery
Tony from The WitchDoktors by Paul Slattery
Zig C. from The WitchDoktors by Paul Slattery
Andy and Joe from The WitchDoktors by Paul Slattery
Andy from The WitchDoktors by Paul Slattery
The WitchDoktors at The Barfly by Paul Slattery
For more information on The WitchDoktors please check out their official web-site here and The Phobics can be found here. You can also hear some tracks from The WitchDoktors in Episode 9 and Episode 10 of our Retrosonic Podcast and The Phobics in Episode 8. Click the highlighted link to take you to the relevant Episode where you can either listen or download for FREE...!

With thanks to Paul Slattery for sharing the excellent photos of one of the gigs of the year. All photos copyright Paul Slattery 2013 and may not be reproduced or copied without prior consent.