The story ends neatly at the 20 year mark, with plenty of shows still to look forward to later in 2017 and new bands appearing all of the time. But will I still be going to these shows in another 20 years? Hard to say. The prospects beyond the next few years simply aren’t as good as they have been of late, with the demonisation of music venues and the complications of Brexit refusing to go away. Continue reading
2017 is a story as yet unwritten in full, as the 20-year mark where this tale draws to a close arrives in the middle. And hence a lengthy write-up is beyond me, as I don’t have a years worth of context to build the gigging tales round. But there is one event that does justify a bit more, and those of you who have read this far can probably guess what it is. Continue reading
For 2016, I’ve decided not to write a detailed account of WGT or Infest. That’s not to reflect badly on either event, just that I can’t spin any lengthy tale about WGT 2016 that isn’t a slightly-modified version of one you’ve already read. As for Infest 2016, that’s coming in a future piece….so here’s a few less-obvious tales of live music instead. Continue reading
The early days of 2015 saw me quell a number of inner demons that had loomed large for the past couple of years. In terms of live music, there was plenty of action throughout the year, but it once again fell to Wave-Gotik-Treffen to provide the first big story. Continue reading
There was a healthy run of interesting shows early in 2014. Laibach were back on tour, as were B-Movie, another chance to see Tenek and rare appearance of Rosa Crux, still one of the most unique stage shows you’ll ever see. But I’m determined that this piece is about documenting the influence of live music on the person, not a dry collection of live reviews. And in a year in which I was rarely in a truly happy place (reasons to be discussed elsewhere), I needed something more than isolated gigs to move me. Continue reading
The other notable event in 2012 was the start of a relationship that’s still going strong today. It’s not something I’m going to write about here or in any future piece, Mandy is very happy to remain the ‘private’ half of the couple, but I can’t write this piece without giving her some credit for my live music experiences, especially in 2013. The story of how we obtained Kraftwerk tickets, for instance – is hers to tell, not mine, and it’s also thanks to her that my return to Wave-Gotik-Treffen was secured, as was my farewell to outdoor festivals. Continue reading
This is one of the hardest years to write about in terms of my ‘man in the crowd’ perspective, as this was the era when my DJing and gigging schedules crossed over the most. I’ve already said that stories of those events will be told at a later date. Luckily, I didn’t quit being a ‘regular punter’ entirely, and hence there are a few live stories to be told.
Most of my 2012 live experiences occurred in small venues. I saw The Mission and The Cult in the Hammersmith Apollo (it was meant to be somewhere bigger and also feature Killing Joke, but wasn’t meant to be), and the next largest venues I visited were Bradford Uni (for Infest) and The Scala (for VNV). Most of the other shows I attended were in bar or pub level venues. In many cases, this featured bands ‘just starting out’ – plus (dare I say) a few cases of ‘has-been’ and ‘never quite was’, so the sparks of greatness were thinner on the ground than some years, but compensated for by the sheer variety and volume. Continue reading
2010 was an eventful year, for sure. But nothing stops when a calendar gets chucked. And sure enough, 2011 was almost as busy. Gig-wise, the key feature of this year was the increased merging of my DJing with my gigging. Four times I played the role of support DJ at live music events. However, there’s a lot more to those stories than the memories of the live music, significant that it was. Those stories will be written later, in a separate volume looking into my Djing life.
One other fact – it was the third consecutive year where I attended no overseas festivals or gigs. This isn’t something I’d given up on, it’s just I had other demands on the money at the time. Infest, the low-budget indoor festival in Bradford, was still an option, however. Continue reading