Sunday 30 March 2014

The Len Price 3 + Galileo 7 + The Sonic Jewels live at The Pipeline March 01st: Exclusive Paul Slattery Photos

The Len Price 3 by Paul Slattery
Phil Moore at Sweet But Deadly Promotions put on yet another great line-up, this time at the Pipeline near Liverpool Street Station, on Saturday March 01st. Unfortunately I missed the first band, the hotly-tipped Sonic Jewels, but luckily photographer Paul Slattery was there to witness their set and he was mightily impressed. I did manage to chat to the band after the show and Paul picked up a copy of their album "The Dark Road To Venus" from which he chose an excellent track "The Slide Of Time", as one of his top-tips in Episode 13 of Retrosonic Podcast. I have been listening to the album a lot recently and can't recommend it highly enough, so I am even more disappointed that I missed them. Let's hope they play live again very soon and I will try and make it along.

The Sonic Jewels at The Pipeline by Paul Slattery
I was very keen to see Galileo 7 play for the first time and tonight I thoroughly enjoyed their set of tuneful Garage-Psych numbers that reminded me a bit of "World Shut Your Mouth" (the album, not the single...) and "Fried" era Julian Cope. The Galileo 7's singer, guitarist and songwriter is none other than Allan Crockford, who is currently also playing bass with his ex-Prisoners and Solarflares pals Graham Day and Wolf Howard in Graham Day & The Forefathers, blasting out a raw high energy set of all their old classic to delighted crowds at packed-out venues. Galileo 7 also feature drummer Russ Baxter from Secret Affair, Keyboard player Viv Bonsells, who took over lead vocals on one song, and bassist Mole who had his turn on a great cover of The Nerves "Paper Dolls". I saw Mole play drums with The Higher State and Groovy Uncle last year and he also helps to run State Records, so he must be a very busy chap. Galileo 7 played a well received set including a few of my favourites such as "Orangery Lane", "Anne Hedonia" and "Are We Having Fun Yet?" along with some new numbers from their forthcoming album "False Memory Lane". You can hear "Don't Follow Me", an exclusive track from the album played in Retrosonic Podcast Episode 13.

Allan Crockford of Galileo 7 by Paul Slattery
Headliners The Len Price 3 are currently riding high on the acclaim lavished on their latest album "Nobody Knows" which has been getting some really great reviews recently, including a 10/10 in Vive Le Rock magazine. Kicking off with a storming version of "Words Won't Come" there's a false start on the next song but the band pick it up and soon everyone is singing along to a breakneck version of "Billy Mason" which speeds past in just over a minute and a half, "it's not fast enough!" shouts someone from the crowd ironically. Despite being one of the newest songs in the band's set "My Grandad Jim" is fast becoming a fan's favourite, and then we are treated to some more well established classics in "Rentacrowd" and "The Girl Who Became a Machine" which get the crowd worked up even more. On stage The Len Price 3 are an all-out attack on the senses, visually they are a blur of red, white and blue striped blazers as bassist Steve Huggins and lead vocalist and guitarist Glenn Page career about the stage, and off it too!

Glenn Page of The Len Price 3 by Paul Slattery
Drummer Neil Fromow is not one to be upstaged though, and his Keith Moon style attack on the drum-kit and magnificent backing harmonies ensure he is not just left in the shadows. "Preying Mantis" and the Kinksian "Vultures" are next and prove that deep down the band are not afraid to tackle dark and cynical subject matters in their lyrics. "If I Ain't Got You" and "Pictures" are blasted out and then "Lonely" from the new album slows the pace so we can have a bit of breather before we're off again with "With Your Love" and then their cover of "Comanche!" which sees Glenn get in amongst the crowd. Next up is "The London Institute" which most people agree is the outstanding track on the new album as it stretches the band into a new dimension, and despite it's dream-sequence like psychedelic interlude on the record, it also works really well live.

The Len Price...errrr 5...! Photo by Paul Slattery
"Girl Like You" ends the set but it's not long before the band are called back for more and the first encore of a scathing "You Tell Lies" is swiftly followed by the touching "After You're Gone". Next is their first single, the Garage Rock classic "Christian In The Desert" after which Glenn kindly plugs our two upcoming gigs with The Len Price 3, firstly at The Railway in Southend on April 26th and then the Half Moon Putney on June 06th (with Graham Day & The Forefathers and The Galileo 7) and he sticks the flyer on his forehead for added promotional value. They play a rampant "Chinese Burn" and then "Shirley Crabtree" sparks another stage invasion and mass singalong. The band get called back for yet another encore with various requests being shouted out before settling on a totally wired version of "Chatham Town Spawns Devils" and then it's finally all over, another great gig from The Len Price 3! Here are some more exclusive photos from Paul Slattery.

The Sonic Jewels by Paul Slattery
The Sonic Jewels by Paul Slattery
Galileo 7 by Paul Slattery
Galileo 7 by Paul Slattery
The Len Price 3 by Paul Slattery
The Len Price 3 by Paul Slattery
The Len Price 3 by Paul Slattery
Retro Man Blog presents an evening of wild Garage Rock from The Medway featuring Graham Day & The Forefathers, The Len Price 3 and Galileo 7 at The Half Moon in Putney on Friday June 06th. This gig is in conjunction with the great book "The Kids Are All Square (Medway Punk & Beyond 1977-1985)" by Ian Snowball and Bob Collins and there will be copies for sale at the gig. Advance tickets are selling fast and can be booked from the Half Moon's direct link here

Check out Episode 13 of Retrosonic Podcast where you can hear Galileo 7 and Sonic Jewels along with a top selection of groovy Psych, Soul and Garage Rock including The Chocolate Watchband, The Clique, The Afex, Otis Clay, Thee Mighty Caesars, The Movements, Fogbound and more...

Thanks to Paul Slattery for the photos, for more pics of the gig head on over to the Retro Man Blog Facebook page and hit "Like" for access to the photo album.

Friday 28 March 2014

Tom Hingley (ex-Inspiral Carpets) live at The Railway Hotel Southend-on-Sea March 22nd by Mark Lancaster

Tom Hingley at The Railway, Southend - Photo by Mark Lancaster
In my opinion Inspiral Carpets were the best of the bands to come out of, what the music press dubbed (somewhat incorrectly), as Madchester. For starters the band hailed from, in the main, Oldham. They produced a string of excellent singles in the late 80’s/early 90’s and even had one of their songs ‘I Want You’ reworked for the BBC Saturday morning children’s show ‘The 8.15 from Manchester’. Part of their success was no doubt down to Tom Hingley’s excellent vocals. Whereas Happy Mondays and The Stone Roses were bands where the vocalist couldn’t sing for toffee, the Inspirals had a really good singer in Tom (who is, fact fans, actually from Oxfordshire, which is not a suburb of Manchester). Tom, who must be one of the hardest gigging acts in the UK, returned for his third visit to Southend-on-Sea’s premier music venue The Railway Hotel (home of many Retroman/Podrophenia projects) since last August, so it is obviously a venue he enjoys playing. A decent sized audience settled down for a free (yes free!) gig on a Saturday afternoon. 

Photo by Mark Lancaster
Tom’s acoustic set started off with a reworking of the Inspiral’s 1993 Top 20 hit ‘Saturn 5’. The song, which on this solo version has slowed down considerably, shows off Tom’s excellent vocals and took on an almost torch-song quality. This was swiftly followed by two other Inspiral’s favourites ‘She Comes In The Fall’ and ‘Dragging Me Down’. We then had a five minute break because Tom had to pop outside and feed the parking meter before taking to the stage to continue with the gig. Rock and Roll eh? 

What is also evident is that Tom is an excellent guitarist. Playing an acoustic guitar which looked like it had been round the block a few times he, in the words of one Railway punter, “made it sing”. His Bottle-Neck Blues playing is right up there with the best of them and the sounds he gets from his guitar without the use of pedals is fantastic. My highlights of the gig were ‘Good’ from his 2009 ‘Thames Valley Delta Blues’ album, an a cappella version of Janis Joplin’s ‘Mercedes Benz’ with added audience hand claps and a great version of the James classic ‘Sit Down’ which segued into Erma Franklin’s ‘Another Piece Of My Heart’. Tom then cemented his ‘hardest working man on the circuit’ credentials by heading off to Gillingham in Kent for his second gig of the day straight after his set. I am already looking forward to the next time Mr Hingley returns to Southend for an afternoon of great music. Tom is also playing at the 100 Club in London’s Oxford Street with his Tom Hingley Band project on 16th April. They play, what has been described as “Electric Dirty Blues”. Now that sounds like a gig to go to!

Tom Hingley - Photo by Mark Lancaster
Review and Photographs copyright Mark Lancaster 2014. 

With many thanks to Mark for contributing the great review. You can check out Tom's up to date news at The Tom Hingley Official Facebook page and pre-order tickets for the 100 Club gig here.

Thursday 27 March 2014

The Jetsonics + The Fallen Leaves + The Transients at The Fighting Cocks, Kingston-Upon-Thames March 21st: Exclusive Paul Slattery Photos

The Fallen Leaves by Paul Slattery
Thanks to everyone who came along to The Fighting Cocks in Kingston-Upon-Thames to see a great triple bill of bands - The Jetsonics, The Fallen Leaves and The Transients - it was an excellent turn-out considering the unusually high amount of gigs being held on the 21st and we really appreciate it, especially as we know there were quite a few cases of divided loyalties...! All three bands were on top form and rock photographer Paul Slattery was there to capture the action...

The Transients by Paul Slattery
The Transients by Paul Slattery
The Fallen Leaves by Paul Slattery
The Fallen Leaves by Paul Slattery
The Fallen Leaves by Paul Slattery
The Fallen Leaves by Paul Slattery
The Jetsonics by Paul Slattery
The Jetsonics by Paul Slattery

Thanks to Paul Slattery for contributing the photos. For more photos of the gig head on over to the Retro Man Blog Facebook page and, if you are not already signed up, hit "Like" for access to the photo album. You can see The Fallen Leaves supporting The Monochrome Set at our Retro Man Blog night at The Half Moon Putney on Saturday May 24th, advance tickets can be booked here.

Sunday 16 March 2014

Retro Man Blog Presents: The Monochrome Set with The Fallen Leaves at The Half Moon Putney May 24th

We are very proud to announce that our first Retro Man Blog Night of the year at The Half Moon Putney will feature The Monochrome Set with special guests The Fallen Leaves. This will be on Saturday May 24th from 8pm with advance tickets at only £12.50 and tickets on the door at £14.50.  The Monochrome Set are one of the most enduring bands to have emerged from the early Punk days, here is a bit of background of how it all started. Primordial soup: Andy Warren and Bid went to school together, Lester Square and Adam Ant both attended Hornsey School of Art. The latter two formed a band called "The B-Sides", which Andy joined sometime in 1976. Bid also joined a couple of months later, and Adam left shortly after. Lester, Andy and Bid occasionally continued to write and rehearse together (it was around this time that some of the songs later to be used by The Monochrome Set were written, e.g., Goodbye Joe, He's Frank, Puerto-Rican Fence Climber, Lester Leaps In), until Adam formed The Ants with Lester and Andy. 

The Monochrome Set at Bush Hall 2013 - Photo by Retro Man Blog
Whilst Andy continued on with Adam to record the first Ants album, Lester left The Ants in 1977, to form, firstly The Zarbies & The Ectomorphs with Bid and Jeremy Harrington, and then The Monochrome Set with Bid (Jeremy joined later). To quote the Asahi Evening News, 1993: "When B-Sides singer Adam Ant quit the band for an ill-fated solo career, The Monochrome Set was born." The Monochrome Set are probably one of the most quintessentially "Independent" bands, totally unique, they have endured all kinds of fads and fashions along the way and, as proven with their latest album "Super Plastic City, are currently producing some of their best ever work. Along the way they have inspired countless Indie guitar bands and acts as diverse as Franz Ferdinand and Fatboy Slim and been covered by Iggy Pop. Expect to hear tracks from the new album along with a selection of classics from their hugely impressive back catalogue.

The Monochrome Set Dingwalls 2012 - Photo by Retro Man Blog
The Fallen Leaves have a similar pedigree, guitarist Rob Symmons was in the Subway Sect along with Vic Godard and was responsible for those scathing guitar riffs on early Punk classics such as "Nobody's Scared" and "Ambition". One of the very first bands on the scene, they shared rehearsal space and a manager with The Clash. Fallen Leaves vocalist Rob Green also appeared in a latter incarnation of Subway Sect, bassist Matthew Karas can also be found is Glassglue and drummer William Lewington in The Band of Holy Joy. The band have a regular club night "Minimum R'n'B" at the 12 Bar Club in London on the first Wednesday of every month. You can listen to the Fallen Leaves' fascinating history, which takes in those very early Punk days with characters and bands such as Bernie Rhodes, Sex Pistols, Joe Strummer, Malcolm McLaren, Billy Childish and The Downliners Sect. The two episodes are generously sound-tracked with many Fallen Leaves songs and a pick of the band's favourite tracks. Here's episode 1 "Punk Rock for Gentlemen".

The Half Moon is at 93 Lower Richmond Road, London SW15 1EU and you can pre-order tickets here or call the venue directly on 0208 780 9383. Doors open at 8pm.

Thursday 13 March 2014

Retrosonic Podcast Episode 13: "I Know How To Please You..."

Steve from Retro Man Blog, Rock Photographer Paul Slattery and Adam from The Jetsonics with the usual waffle, news and top tunes...This Episode features all the info about our exciting Medway Garage Rock gig on June 6th with Graham Day & The Forefathers, The Len Price 3 and Galileo 7 in conjunction with the new Countdown Publications book "The Kids Are All Square" by Ian Snowball and Bob Collins about the Medway music scene. Sticking with the Medway theme, there's classics from The Prisoners and Thee Mighty Caesars and we are very pleased to have an exclusive track from Galileo 7 from their forthcoming new album. Elsewhere there's groovy Psychedelia from Fogbound, The New Alchemy, The Sonic Jewels and The Chocolate Watchband, a Mod rarity from The Afex and some great Garage Rock from The Uniques and The Movements. We have another exclusive from the fantastic French Ye-Ye Beat group Les Kitschenettes, raw soul from Otis Clay and some classic Trojan Ska from Claudette...All this and news on the new Graham Day & The Forefathers limited edition 7" single on State Records and chat about our other upcoming Retro Man Blog gigs with The Len Price 3, The Jetsonics, The Fallen Leaves, The Transients, The WitchDoktors, King Salami & The Cumberland 3, The Superminx 70, The Past Tense and Les Kitschenettes and reports on recent gigs and happenings...You can listen and download all previous Episodes at our Retrosonic Soundcloud site here...In the meantime here's Episode 13...enjoy!

Monday 10 March 2014

Fuzzy Vox New Album "On Heat" Out Now!

Fuzzy Vox, the high energy Power Pop trio from Joinville on the outskirts of Paris, have just released their debut album "On Heat" on download and white 180 gram vinyl and head off on a string of dates throughout France to promote it. The eight track album has been produced by Pelle Gunnerfeldt who has also worked with The Hives, which comes as no surprise from the first two tracks "1789" and "Man Of Solution" which both bear a close resemblance to the Swedish Garage Rock stars. Third track "Dying Town" is a jittery and tuneful romp that reminds me of early XTC but the band haven't neglected the Power Pop sensibilities of their earlier releases and "Vibrator" has a nice jangly guitar motif and soaring feel-good chorus. "She's On Her Period Again" has a lovely Rickenbacker intro and is so catchy that you might find yourself singing along with the somewhat dubious song title in the chorus very loudly in public. "Let Me Ride" is probably the album's weakest track but it ups the tempo for a full-on Garage Rock stomper and is followed by the even heavier "Ruby Heart Stealer" which positively thunders along. "On Heat" ends all too quickly with the soulful "Crumb of My Heart", a great way to end a very satisfactory album that I would thoroughly recommend getting hold of. To buy the album check out the Fuzzy Vox Bandcamp page and for more details on their live shows visit their official Facebook page.

Here's the great video to "1789", the opening track from "On Heat"...enjoy!