- Enjoyed Hit the North over the first May Bank Holiday weekend! I got to see some great bands. The first one I saw was Pip Blom from Holland at the Think Tank; a Dutch four-piece who had a fantastic vibe and energy on stage. They have a bit of a Stereolab vibe about them, which is not a bad thing to be honest. Next, at the Think Tank Underground was Swimming Tapes, they sounded like a laid-back Teenage Fanclub. Their music was good, but for a five-piece band, they were very quite.
Next was a rapper called Sweets at the Head of Steam. It was crowded, the audience seemed to be well into the music and then he started to rap. I lasted a few tracks and it was not for me. If you like it, more power to you! After this was Sophie and the Giants at the Boiler Room, who turned out to be the revelation of the day. Four piece Indie Pop with who will appeal to fans of Florence + the Machine, which is not a bad thing. The best thing was singer Sophie Scott, her vocals were stunning. I was down there with a couple of friends. One guy is a Guns 'N' Roses fan, the other wishes he was Barbara Streisand. All three of us agreed that they were the band of the day.
After this, I flew solo for a little bit. First up I saw Spielbergs from Olso, Norway. I bumped into my former NE1FM colleague John from the 145, which is always a good sign for a band. It was held at the Brewdog and I had an issue with this venue. It was one where you could get in without a ticket for the festival, which meant that you had stag do's and people generally being arseholes. There were doormen, but they were as effective as a dead frog in a rainstorm. If you have a venue as a festival venue, keep it for the general public. Anyway, Spielbergs were spot on, their post-punk/new Hardcore/Indie hybrid is infectious, such a good band who I'll see again when they return to Newcastle.
The final act I watched was The Lake Poets, back at the Think Tank Underground. Now, The Lake Poets are a Sunderland act, one of their songs, "Shipyards", was used to great effect on the Netflix documentary Sunderland Till I Die. So, they came on stage and were full of great banter, mocking the Toon fans and the fact that the sound from the other venues was bleeding into the venue. Originally, this set was supposed to have been played at Newcastle Cathedral, but it was changed at some point. I think it might have worked better there, but it was still a wonderful set.
After that, I headed home. There was no-one I was aching to see, but I heard that other sets went off so well. I'm already looking forward to next year's, obviously no idea who is playing, but it's a great event for the city!
- It's been my birthday recently, which was a nice and gentle affair. I went to Tynemouth for a bit, finally saw Avengers: Endgame (more on that later), bought far too many records (given) and had a great time off work. Livin' small is a much better way to celebrate, took me a long time to learn that lesson.
- Avengers: Endgame. What a movie, I mean that was an event. I'm not going to go into too much dealt (in case you've not seen it). But I can say the following:
The scene with Thor and ***** was heartbreak, wish I could have a similar conversation with my ***.
The first half of the movie was a disaster survivor film, it's a fantastic piece of cinema. Once you reintroduce Ant-man, the tone of the movie changed.
It does get silly (even for a Marvel Movie) and it feels like a victory lap at times, but never at the expense of the story.
The send-off for ********, *************** and ********** were a mixture of heart break and beautifully framed.
The handover at the end was brilliant and in keeping with the comics.
It's not the best Avengers movie, not even the best Marvel movie, but it's a fitting ending to the Infinity Saga. I would recommend seeing it in the pictures.
- I'm hoping to go to the This Is Tomorrow festival. Not for the headline bands too much, more for the local acts early on in the day. Should be a laugh.
- My ex-Duma colleague, Mr Chris Jermyn has a new band called Green River Messiah. He's trying something new and I wish him all the best.
- If you get to hear one album this year, make sure it's the new one by The Wildhearts. It's called Renaissance Men, it's a real grower of an album.
- Why the living fuck is M+S selling something called Porn Star Martinis? This is a place where the average age of the patrons of these stores in their 60's, what do they want from porno! ;-)
- I've got some ideas in my mind for BGM, it should be a laugh.
- Also, the first recording of Then There Were Two with Mr Andrew Oyston, more on that once we start to post them.
- I'll be posting a blog soon which I wrote in the aftermath of leaving NE1FM. It's not a gritty detail or full of bad press, just how I was feeling at the time. I never got around to posting it, but I still feel that I need to get it up. At least for a milestone for that era of the show. As I've posted in other places, I have a few things on cooking radio wise. I'll be presenting a show called Across the Pond on Flytrap radio which is going to broadcasting out of Nashville in America (at least I think it is, Keith - can you confirm?). I've also been doing some Open Mic slots on Nova Radio North East in the UK, we'll see how that goes. If both start running, it's worth pointing out that they'll both have two slightly target audiences. Across the Pond will be a show with a Parental Warning, the show on Nova will be your standard "no swear, no issues" show. Musical, sort of similar, but one will be edited to a degree. That is something I'm cool with, but I'm also excited for both opportunities
- My family life is sorting itself, thanks for messages and all that jazz. Looking after loved ones is hard, but very rewarding too. If only there was less Game of Thrones. ;-)
- Well, that's all the points I wanted to raise here. Until next time, take care!
David Bowie - The Next Day
The Cranberries - Everyone Else is Doing It, So Why Can't We?
Frank Zappa - Chunga's Revenge
Dunes - Take Me To The Nasties
Ben Folds - Rockin' the Suburbs
Lovely Wife - Audible Beef
Puppy - The Goat
The Wildhearts - Renaissance Men
Massive Wagons - Full Nelson
The Mute Gods - Atheists and Believers
Brad - United we Stand
Logic - Supermarket
Marvin Gaye - What's Going On
Andrew Bird - My Finest Work Yet
Most of these should be available on streaming sites, apart from Dunes and Lovely Wife which is out later in the year. That one is a belter! Here is a Spotify playlist with my favourite moments.
Eddie (currently melting in this global warming heatwave - Newcastle upon Tyne, 16th May 2019)