Live Review: Muse. Ashton Gate Stadium, Bristol – 5th June 2019

After the football stadium at Ashton Gate had been redeveloped, they decided to start hosting big concerts again – they’ve done it in the past with such cutting-edge acts as Meat Loaf, Elton John and The Who, but this year they upped their game somewhat by hosting 4 concerts in consecutive weeks.First up was Rod Stewart (a safe retro act), then Take That and finishing with The Spice Girls – Rod The Mod is OK Continue Reading

Live Review: Status Quo, many times…

When I decided to start this blog, one thing I wanted to do was go back and write about concerts I’ve been to in the past, and I realised that I have an ideal opportunity to start this.This post is very deliberately timed, exactly 35 years to the day, to the hour, from when I was at what I consider to be gig #1 – the first gig I went to on my own, Status Continue Reading

Live Review: Little Steven and the Disciples of Soul. O2 Academy, Bristol 22 May 2019

“Little who?” I hear you ask…Little Steven, aka Miami Steve, aka Steve Van Zandt – old friend of Bruce Springsteen, member of the E Street Band, sometime writer and producer for Southside Johnny and the Asbury Jukes, and for some of you Silvio Dante from The Sopranos – or maybe Frank from Lilyhammer. And the man who wrote Sun City. His solo career has been a bit hit and miss/stop-start – his first album came Continue Reading

My Download Problem

My name is Simon and I have a download problem.More specifically, I have a Bruce Springsteen download problem. One of the joys of being a Springsteen fan is that no two shows of his are ever the same – he really does change the setlist every night, and even then rarely keeps exactly to what he wrote down before the show. When he does multi-night stands in one place, it changes even more.So there’s always Continue Reading

Live Review: The Unthanks. St George’s, Bristol 1 May 2019

Gigs on consecutive nights! I think I’ve only done that once before, when I saw The Strypes at the Thekla on the night before a classical concert at St George’s – not the greatest of scheduling given how loud The Strypes were! The contrast between Tuesday’s Tubular Bells for Two and Wednesday’s Unthanks show couldn’t be greater – something like 20 instruments on stage for TB, no instruments for The Unthanks. I think they had Continue Reading

Live Review: Tubular Bells for Two. St George’s, Bristol 30 April 2019

When I saw something called “Tubular Bells For Two” in the listings for St George’s, I thought it had to be worth investigating. Mike Oldfield’s album is one of my absolute favourites and will always feature in my all-time top 10 albums – I usually have it on my phone and do listen to it fairly frequently. It turns out that TB For Two is a performance by two Australian multi-instrumentalists (Aiden Roberts and Tom Continue Reading

Buying Vinyl – Toyah

The car boot sale this morning had thin pickings, apart from one stall with masses of pretty good looking vinyl – as long as you like 50s rock n roll. Which doesn’t really do it for me. The only thing of real interest I found was a 10″ Django Reinhardt record, with Stephane Grapelli – it’s actually a Hot Club de France record, and they are very listenable. The best buy of recent days came Continue Reading

Terry Riley – St George’s, Bristol. 13th April 2019

I was quite surprised when I saw this concert in the listings for St George’s in Bristol. What, the Terry Riley? At the lovely little 500 seater venue in Bristol?Yes, that Terry Riley – he of “In C”, “A Rainbow in Curved Air”, half of the inspiration for Baba O’Riley by The Who, and one of the pioneers of minimalist music. So we booked.As an aside, it was really unfortunate timing, as we then found Continue Reading

The Modern Jazz Quartet – LPJT56

I found this in my dad’s collection a couple of weeks ago, and I’d bought one of their LPs earlier in the year – fortunately not the same one. This is rather pleasant listenable jazz, recorded in the mid 1950s. The main difference is that while it has your regular piano, upright bass and drums, they also have a virtuoso vibraphobe player. Vibes have a unique sound – warmer and fuller than a glockenspiel or Continue Reading

Reading List

As this blog is supposed to about more than just records and gigs, I thought I would start its new iteration with a reading list – some of the music books that I’ve read and some I plan to read. Joe Boyd “White Bicycles” – I read this on the back of his work with Fairport Convention – someone who seemed to be there at every key event in the 60s Glyn Johns “Sound Man” Continue Reading