HOME ABOUT NEWS ADVERTISE VIDEO LINKS CONTACT
  
   Register now    Login
Main Menu
Local Stuff
In the Magazine
Useful Links
Live Radio Players

Your Ad Here
Now Social Networks
The Daily St Helens Now

Read the latest edition of The Daily St Helens Now | Subscribe

Online free daily newspaper for St Helens, Merseyside - sthelensnow.com @sthelensnow #sthelensnow #sthelens - Updated every day at 7.00am

The Daily St Helens Now is a different kind of newspaper as anyone can share to the paper provided it is about or relevant to St Helens, Merseyside.

St Helens Headlines


Getintothis
  Updated Fri, 18 Aug 2017 15:02:40 +0000
Description Liverpool Music Blog
Webmaster
Category
Generator https://wordpress.org/?v=4.6.6
Language en-GB
Roy Ayers, No Fakin? DJs: 24 Kitchen Street, Liverpool
Category Live reviews, 24 Kitchen Street, Madnice Marauders, no fakin dj, No Fakin DJs, Roy Ayers
Published:
Description:

Just as all great events at Kitchen Street turn out damp and jam packed, Getintothis’ Amaan Khan saw Roy Ayers and his band follow the tradition with their fiery jazz. In with a loud hit of the snare, like a bang on the door to a great night, ‘the godfather of neo-soul’ Roy Ayers and his band kicked off the [...]

The post Roy Ayers, No Fakin’ DJs: 24 Kitchen Street, Liverpool appeared first on Getintothis.

  more...
Roy Ayers

Roy Ayers

Just as all great events at Kitchen Street turn out damp and jam packed, Getintothis’ Amaan Khan saw Roy Ayers and his band follow the tradition with their fiery jazz.

In with a loud hit of the snare, like a bang on the door to a great night, ‘the godfather of neo-soul’ Roy Ayers and his band kicked off the tight jams that would see us through the night.

The venue was already brimming with a crowd that had soaked up a clear sun, beer, pizza, No Fakin DJ‘s seasoned mixes and an altogether lively atmosphere at the venue’s courtyard party before the main act even came on.

So when Roy Ayers and his band brought on their Ray Charles with a modern boogie sounds, the warmed up crowd offered their best moves from the get go.

Truly, the show was as much of the band’s as it was of Ayers’, as they interwove bass, drums, keys and electronic vibraphone through seamless and extended jams that seem to take a song and morph it into something different entirely.

This writer has an irrational problem with acts that sound the same every time and a noticeable love for improvisation and the night’s act fed that love with improvised setlist and jams extending to almost 20 minutes each time.

Check out our exploration of the jazz scene in the city of Liverpool

Kudos to Ayers‘ courage that he kicked-off with his strongest and most popular songs like Everybody Likes the Sunshine and Searchin’, thus setting high standards from the start. Intense music like that spends both performers and listeners alike, so when the band went into the jazz standard Autumn Leaves, a portion of the crowd decided to step out for a bit to take a respite from both the intense music and the room’s stuffiness, and that chilled instrumental felt oddly fitting between the intense work.

Without complying to the encore requestRoy Ayers bid adieu a very varied audience of locals and non-locals alike who went on to continue the party with the DJs and the courtyard vibes and basking in that summer happiness – courtesy of the promoters, the artists and the venue team.

Pictures by Getintothis’ Tom Adam.

Roy Ayers Roy Ayers Roy Ayers Roy Ayers Roy Ayers Crowd at Roy Ayers No Fakin' DJs Yard party

 

The post Roy Ayers, No Fakin’ DJs: 24 Kitchen Street, Liverpool appeared first on Getintothis.

Stealing Sheep: Buyers Club, Liverpool
Category Live reviews, Beach Boys, Buyers Club, Can, Emily Lansley, Lucy Mercer, Pink Floyd, Rebecca Hawley, Stealing Sheep
Published:
Description:

Stealing Sheep played an intimate show at Buyers Club to preview their forthcoming album and Getintothis’ Rick Leach saw the future. Clear blue skies overhead. The sun had been shining all afternoon and it finally felt like summer. It seemed very appropriate. Stealing Sheep were back in Liverpool to play a very small show at [...]

The post Stealing Sheep: Buyers Club, Liverpool appeared first on Getintothis.

  more...
Stealing Sheep

Stealing Sheep

Stealing Sheep played an intimate show at Buyers Club to preview their forthcoming album and Getintothis’ Rick Leach saw the future.

Clear blue skies overhead. The sun had been shining all afternoon and it finally felt like summer.

It seemed very appropriate. Stealing Sheep were back in Liverpool to play a very small show at Buyers Club to showcase their forthcoming album.

There was a distinct buzz in the air; a sense of anticipation. Everybody seemed happy and everybody was smiling.

Something was going to happen, but we weren?t exactly sure what it was going to be.

What we did know-what we all knew before- that Stealing Sheep, all three of them, Rebecca Hawley, Emily Lansley and Lucy Mercer, would undoubtedly come up with something different and something special.

And this is what happened.

Two albums in.  Two great albums; 2012?s Into the Diamond Sun and 2015?s Not Real and now?2017.

What would we get? What will Stealing Sheep do?

We waited.The dry ice swirled around like the mist on an early summers morning as dawn is breaking and the stage lights burned a fuzzy blue.We were off. This was it.

We were enveloped in swathes of sound.

Looking around, those smiles widened. Those smiles turned into grins.

These were new songs and these were great songs. These were really great songs. The blue light turned into a warm and deep red. So deep and warm and comforting it was as if we were cocooned inside a sort of velvet world that Stealing Sheep had conjured up just for us, just for us on that Thursday evening in August.

Lost Liverpool #21: The Cavern Mecca and the start of Beatles tourism

Yet this wasn?t some soft and fuzzy felt-like ethereal folkish musings. There was an edge and a bite, a sharpness from Rebecca?s keyboards and an urgency from Lucy?s drums, underpinned and over pinned with a bass from Emily which ran orchestral-like through the whole set. It was difficult to believe that a bass guitar could produce such subtle and complex sounds, but it did.

There were harmonies of course. There would always be harmonies.

Three voices in harmony, reaching forward and kissing the sky. This was what the Beach Boys could have sounded like if they?d been locked in a room with only the complete works of Can for company and inspiration.

At one point, all the lights went down. Everything went dark and we heard the faintest heartbeat. An electronic heartbeat. An echo of Pink Floyd. But this wasn?t a harsh or grim heartbeat. This wasn?t a cynical or knowing heartbeat. This was a heartbeat of optimism and a heartbeat for the future. This instrumental track by Stealing Sheep sounded like Pink Floyd if Pink Floyd had been good.

These new songs by Stealing Sheep-all of them and without exception- showed a band moving ever forward. The progression is startling.

There?s something about them, something about Stealing Sheep that makes you hopeful for the future.

It?s hard to know if it?s the deep European disco influences that run like a thread of quartz through an ancient stone hewn from a mountain or the way that you can close your eyes and imagine perfect white clouds scudding across the bluest sky ever.

It might be the way they can make music that swirls and bounces as the same time. Is that even possible? How do they do that? But they do and they do it so well.

It could be the way that they finish the set and do their encore, dancing in harmony in ribboned tin foil capes, everybody smiling and clapping and cheering and knowing that this is the music for the future.

There are a myriad of reasons why Stealing Sheep are special and it?s hard to know exactly why. It doesn?t really matter. Maybe they know the answers. Maybe they know the questions as well.

The only answer we can come up with, for now anyway, is?yes!

We can?t wait to hear the album and we can?t wait for you to hear it as well.

Pictures by Getintothis’ Francesco Imola

Stealing Sheep Stealing Sheep Stealing Sheep Stealing Sheep Stealing Sheep Stealing Sheep Stealing Sheep Stealing Sheep Stealing Sheep

 

[paypal_donation]

The post Stealing Sheep: Buyers Club, Liverpool appeared first on Getintothis.

Ásgeir announces European tour including Liverpool
Category Uncategorised, arts club, Ásgeir, european tour, I Love Live Events
Published:
Description:

Following the release of Ásgeir new album and tour announcement, Getintothis’ Jessica Borden has all the details. Following the release of his album Afterglow, Icelandic singer-songwriter Ásgeir has announced an extensive European tour including a date in Liverpool. Ásgeir returns with his third album, 5 years after his debut, Dýrð í dauðaþögn, which featured a large portion of lyrics [...]

The post Ásgeir announces European tour including Liverpool appeared first on Getintothis.

  more...
Asgeir facebook

Ásgeir (taken from Artists facebook)

Following the release of Ásgeir new album and tour announcement, Getintothis’ Jessica Borden has all the details.

Following the release of his album Afterglow, Icelandic singer-songwriter Ásgeir has announced an extensive European tour including a date in Liverpool.

Ásgeir returns with his third album, 5 years after his debut, Dýrð í dauðaþögn, which featured a large portion of lyrics by his father. This father and son collaboration continued into Afterglow, due to Ásgeir’s return to his hometown and as a result their musical relationship continues to blossom.

Afterglow maintains the melodic alternative folk atmosphere which winds itself throughout the tracks, the electronic blend of harmonies allows for Ásgeir’s songs to feel modern and not trapped in a folk idea or tradition.

Love Photography? Love Gigs? Make sure you check out our latest In The Pit #15

The Liverpool date comes as only two UK shows (the other in London) and will be hosted at Arts Club on October 17th.

Liverpool-based promoters I Love Live Events, who secured this fantastic show among many others, are running a monthly pass (eight gigs for the price of one) allowing for the discovery of new music along with a chance to see your favourites. So keep an eye out on their Facebook page to catch the monthly pass offer!

[paypal_donation]

The post Ásgeir announces European tour including Liverpool appeared first on Getintothis.

Dysgeusia 33: Old Gods and old school vibes
Category Opinion, Archspire, Basick Records, Couch Slut, Cultes Des Ghoules, Dark Descent Records, exhumed, Gilead Media, Relapse Records, Season of Mist, Sleep Token, Spectral Voice
Published:
Description:

Those days are drawing in, but it isn’t all doom and gloom (unless you’re into that) and Getintothis‘ Mark Davies is here to show you why. If there’s one thing we can be certain of, it’s the change of the seasons. That and the fact that no matter how bare the metal scene may look, [...]

The post Dysgeusia 33: Old Gods and old school vibes appeared first on Getintothis.

  more...
Exhumed (Credit: Artists Facebook page)

Exhumed (Credit: Artists Facebook page)

Those days are drawing in, but it isn’t all doom and gloom (unless you’re into that) and GetintothisMark Davies is here to show you why.

If there’s one thing we can be certain of, it’s the change of the seasons.

That and the fact that no matter how bare the metal scene may look, superficially speaking, if we dig a little deeper, there are plenty of gems waiting to be unearthed.

So we find our inevitably short-lived summer winding to a close, as the days begin to darken earlier once more, and you find yourself having to keep that hoodie on a bit longer than you did only weeks ago.

Depressing? Yes, and with it go the last remnants of festival season, they’re just not good business investments. As hardy as we like to think we are, and no matter how good that line-up might be, nobody likes camping in the winter.

Indeed, the odds of an event landing on a rainy and miserable weekend increase exponentially the further away from the sun we get, funny that. The upside, however, is that bands now begin to take one of two routes, the inward, focusing on writing new material and hitting the studio, or, the outward route, which involves a lot of touring, usually through into the new year.

What this means for us is that we will now start to see more and more new album announcements as the weeks and months go by, and more tours than you can physically (or fiscally) attend. We will be inundated when winter rears it’s bitter head, which is brilliant of course, though it makes our jobs a bit more challenging when it comes to whittling down our metallical track selections for the month! For now, lets just get stuck into what we have to show you for this month’s instalment of Dysgeusia.

A few months back, we did a little introduction feature, and one of the bands mentioned within were a little then-unknown project by the name of Sleep Token. Since then, we have the great pleasure of informing you all that the great and powerful deity Sleep, has been further empowered by the support of major UK tech-metal label Basick Records (Sleep Token got signed, for those who don’t speak concept).

Off the back of this signing, the enigmatic and masked collective known as Sleep Token have put out a second EP aptly named Two as the successor to their first release One, which was released in late July.

Previously, we described the band’s sound as something like a mellower Vanessa Carlton video (the only one she ever did, lets be real here), where Vanessa Carlton is replaced by a soulful male counterpart, and the piano plunges off a cliff into the bowels of hell in the last couple of minutes of their songs. In Two, this, we are pleased to tell you, is still the case, only the songs are even more beautiful in the lovely bits, and even more demonic in the scary bits, with some nice overlapping this time around too.

Our featured track Nazareth, one of three on the EP, has all the makings of a blues number, with smooth keyboard/synth tones and those powerfully melancholic vocals, yet juxtaposed with such cruel and terrifying lyrics, with “Let’s fuck her up” producing a particularly grotesque chill. Elements of other genre are then slowly introduced as we move along, with post-rock drums clattering and vocal harmonies are added for emphasis, until that three-minute mark crashes in with a Lantlôs-esque post-black metal section so moving, that we are almost lulled into thinking that was the heavy bit. We should have known better, because the best/worst is yet to come. If you missed listening to Sleep Token the first time around, do not make the same mistake twice, Praise be to Sleep, may it give Him strength, praise His ways so He may live life everlasting.

Sleep Token ? Nazereth (Basick Records)

 

We go from melancholy and demonic, to just plain FAAAAST, we’re talking about those utterly insane dudes from Canadian technical death metal outfit Archspire. We feel like the band really got together after their last album, 2014’s Lucid Collective, and decided that 300bpms wasn’t quite fast enough, so let’s bump it up to 350. Not for the faint of heart, for those who like being able to air-drum to metal songs, or being able to follow lyrics, but dear lord is it heavy.

The band’s latest album Relentless Mutation, only just announced as being released on 22 September 2017 via Season Of Mist, is likely to feature some of their most insane, almost to the point of un-playability, material to date, and we are stoked. Blast beats upon blast beats, riff after riff, and impossibly fast gutterals are on the table here, and we know the Canadians can deliver, just take our featured track Involuntary Doppelgänger as an example. SLAM.

Archspire – Involuntary Doppelgänger (Season Of Mist)

 

From the impossibly fast to the incredibly gory, we bring you news of death-grind giants Exhumed and their forthcoming new album Death Revenge, a concept album surrounding a series of brutal murders that took place in 1820’s Scotland, which is out 13 October 2017 via Relapse Records. These dudes have been going strong and putting out gore-influenced death/grind metal since their inception in the very early 90s, surviving the dreaded ‘hiatus’ in the mid 2000’s that a number of well established old-school death metal bands all seemed to be affected by, (we can only blame Fred Durst, we’re sure) and successfully reforming in 2010, better and more focused than ever.

Metal, metal and more metal – check out the storied history of Dysgeusia here

Make no mistake, these guys are clearly drawing on a wealth of tradition within their field, but as opposed to sounding like they are stuck in the past, they manage to retain the sense of urgency and relevance that they always had. Guitarist/vocalist and central member Matt Harvey often talks about his love and respect for traditional songwriting structure, and this latest material is no exception if our featured track Defenders of the Grave is anything to go by. Though the production is easily an improvement over their 90s efforts, it still has that rawness and we can’t wait for more.

Exhumed – Defenders of the Grave (Relapse Records)

 

Speaking of old-school, those guys from death/doom outfit Spectral Voice are due to drop their debut LP Eroded Corridors of Unbeing on 13 October 2017 via Dark Descent Records, which given the strength of their material thus far, is going to be a belter, and quite possibly one of our Albums of the Year. This eerie blend of death metal grooves and doomy production techniques, with a pinch of black metal thrown in reminiscent of Cultes Des Ghoules if only for the sheer theatricality of Spectral Voice‘s sound.

Our featured track Visions of Psychic Dismemberment, a sprawling 14-minute descent into a bleak chasm of double-kick grooves and screeching, we are fairly certain is only a taster of the raw and vast wonders that these guys are definitely capable of producing.

Spectral Voice – Visions of Psychic Dismemberment (Dark Descent Records) 

 

Last up, but definitely not least, is the wonderfully named noise metal collective Couch Slut, who despite their name, do anything but sit on their arses. Upon first listen, the first thing that sprung to mind is what would happen if Power Rangers villain Rita Repulsa fronted a hardcore noise metal band, vocalist Megan Osztrosits has a similar screech, and boy does this band kick all kinds of ass, with added female empowerment. We were not expecting these kinds of explosive grooves to come out of such an unassuming group, though to be fair, we didn’t really know what a band called Couch Slut would even sound like before we heard them.

The music itself is a blend of stoner riffs, more up-tempo hardcore grooves and even some rock’n’roll vibes thrown in, all topped off by that signature screaming, and some really filthy nasty bass tones undulating at the bottom of the mix. Very cool stuff, and we would kill to catch them live at some point, they put on quite a show or we’ve been told. Couch Slut put out their second album Contempt on 28 July 2017 via Gilead Media and we strongly urge you to check it out. Here’s a Folk Song to hum along to:

Couch Slut – Folk Song (Gilead Media) 

[paypal_donation]

The post Dysgeusia 33: Old Gods and old school vibes appeared first on Getintothis.

Unknown Pleasures #136 ft. Spilt Milk, Duncan Fellows, Seazoo
Category Unknown Pleasures, Duncan Fellows, Seazoo, Split Milk
Published:
Description:

Manning the Unknown Pleasures column for this week is Getintothis’ Ryan Craig, supplying you with a much needed dose of fresh, new music from all around this crazy world.  Let’s jump straight into it. Hailing from down under are psych band Spilt Milk. Releasing their latest single The Fall just last month, influences from from the likes [...]

The post Unknown Pleasures #136 ft. Spilt Milk, Duncan Fellows, Seazoo appeared first on Getintothis.

  more...
Duncan Fellows

Duncan Fellows (Source: Artist’s website)

Manning the Unknown Pleasures column for this week is Getintothis’ Ryan Craig, supplying you with a much needed dose of fresh, new music from all around this crazy world. 

Let’s jump straight into it. Hailing from down under are psych band Spilt Milk. Releasing their latest single The Fall just last month, influences from from the likes of fellow Aussie band Tame Impala are clear.

Claiming their sound also takes influences from any music during the 60s to the 90s and even onwards. Which, I can say, is an extreme, near excessive, range of music influences! But hey, when that range includes the use of a sneaky sitar from the band, you have no option but to appreciate the desire to create their own tunes taken from decades of sound. 

Next up to bless your ears are the wondrous, joyous, bodacious, Duncan Fellows. Having already been a ‘thing’ for some years now, the band have decided to climb up a level with their debut album, Both Sides of the Ceiling, soon to be released. In the meantime, their latest single Sleepers will have to suffice. Full of delectable bass riffs, smooth vocals and all round feel-good sounds. The five piece are criminally short of listeners they so rightly deserve. Go on, take a listen.

Singles Club #158

Lastly to complete our trio of new music are Welsh indie-pop outfit Seazoo with their single Roy?s World –  taken from the lead track of their debut album.

The term ‘summer anthem’ is thrown around all too often, however, it’s difficult to think of anything better suited with the tracks somewhat wonderful and wacky feel. Carefully weaved melodies laced with a hint psychedelia explode into sounds of silliness, all in the best way possible.

Seazoo are for certainly destined for more greatness, and when that time comes, you too can revel in knowing your contribution made it possible. Tell your friends.

The post Unknown Pleasures #136 ft. Spilt Milk, Duncan Fellows, Seazoo appeared first on Getintothis.

Green Man festival ones to watch ? five acts to see at Brecon Beacons
Category News, British Sea Power, Future Islands, Green Man Festival, Kate Tempest, Michael Kiwanuka, Moddi, PJ Harvey, Ryan Adams
Published:
Description:

As Green Man festival approaches its 15th anniversary, Getintothis’ Luke Traynor has the details and five acts you won’t want to miss. Celebrating their 15th anniversary, Green Man festival returns with full force. Green Man once again vies for the title of most picturesque summer festival, so obviously stunning is the Welsh mountainous backdrop to this now [...]

The post Green Man festival ones to watch – five acts to see at Brecon Beacons appeared first on Getintothis.

  more...
Grreen Man (Credit: Green Man Facebook page)

Green Man (Credit: Green Man Facebook page)

As Green Man festival approaches its 15th anniversary, Getintothis’ Luke Traynor has the details and five acts you won’t want to miss.

Celebrating their 15th anniversary, Green Man festival returns with full force.

Green Man once again vies for the title of most picturesque summer festival, so obviously stunning is the Welsh mountainous backdrop to this now well-established four-day celebration of music, literature, film, comedy, theatre and poetry.

Line-up wise, matters appear promising, with PJ Harvey, Ryan Adams and Future Islands headlining the Mountain Stage on successive nights.

Adams, a country music icon with 16 albums reeled off since his debut release, Heartbreaker, back in 2000 is a strong Saturday booking while PJ Harvey returns to Wales for the first time in 10 years, buoyed by a classic set at Glastonbury in 2016.

Shoegazing legends Ride promise to be a big hit, while St Etienne, Julian Cope, Sleaford Mods, The Shins and Kate Tempest cover most courses of a traditional diet which is alternative, indie, folk, dance and Americana-flavoured.

The ‘In Conversation’ arena looks intriguing itself, with Billy Bragg, Trainspotting author Irvine Welsh and opera turned popular singer Charlotte Church among guests penciled in for a festival that prides itself on its non-corporate, ethical approach, a stance which has seen Green Man win awards including Best Medium Sized Festival 2010 and Grass Roots Festival 2012.

Past years have offered up an eyebrow-raising 17 separate stages, with ceilidhs, all-night bonfires and secret gigs forming a brew which is increasingly quenching, diverse and eclectic.

Hosts Pete Paphides and Bob Stanley return again for another round of the annual Pop Quiz for those wanting to put their knowledge to the test. Factor in all the usual promise of top-notch food, craft-brewed beers, hot tubs in the drizzly open air, and a main stage with views to die for, Green Man seems to have hit upon something special.

In an attempt to make sure you don?t miss some gems, we?ve picked five ones to watch that might just pass you by.

Michael Kiwanuka

Michael Kiwanuka

Michael Kiwanuka
In terms of comparisons, Michael Kiwanuka couldn’t have hoped for much better, parallels being drawn between his warm chocolaty voice and both Marvin Gaye AND Van Morrison.
Winning the BBC?s Sound Of 2012 award, his music has nods to folk and pop, as much as the obvious soul groove, and this weekend, he’s set to play tracks from his experimental second album – Love & Hate.

British Sea Power

British Sea Power

British Sea Power
One of the most reliable guitar band’s of the last 15 years, British Sea Power returned this spring with another formidable burst of colour with their phenomenal new album Let The Dancers Inherit The Party.
The Cumbrian sextet are singled out for their live performances, a wailing and cackling pot of bonhomie that will leave Green Man with a broad smile as wide as the festival’s mountain stage.

Kate Tempest

Kate Tempest

Kate Tempest
Musician, poet, playwright, spoken-word artist? There?s much that Kate Tempest turns her hand to that pushes the boundaries of that medium.
A winner of The Ted Hughes Award for her Brand New Ancients poetry collection, a Mercury Prize nominee for her 2014 debut album, and a Top 30 charting artist for last year?s Let Them Eat Chaos album, Tempest is a multi-layered, multi-talented artist.

D.D Dumbo (taken from festival website)

D.D Dumbo (taken from festival website)

D.D Dumbo
D.D Dumbo is the sobriquet for Australian songwriter Oliver Perry who came to prominence for his live solo show which consists of a 12-string guitar, two drums, and many a pedal to shape his bluesy pop into something aurally arresting..
Last year’s debut LP was a genuine triumph; weird, wonderful, and, vitally, full of warmth.
 
Moddi by Jørgen Nordby Henriksen (taken from artists facebook),

Moddi by Jørgen Nordby Henriksen (taken from artists facebook),

Moddi
Better know to his friends and family with the wonderful name Pål Moddi Knutsen, Moddi is a Norwegian musician who has spent the past decade honing his charming take on folk-pop.
Referring to himself as a singer and storyteller, Moddi is perhaps best known for his reinterpretations of other people?s music; from the hushed intimacy of Vashti Bunyan to the more formidable work of Pussy Riot.
Also know as a political activist, Moddi likes to use his music to support the causes he respects, and his 2016 Unsongs LP featured cover versions of twelve ?banned songs? from twelve different countries.

The post Green Man festival ones to watch – five acts to see at Brecon Beacons appeared first on Getintothis.

Brass Eye film Oxide Ghosts comes to Leaf for premiere and Q&A
Category News, Brass Eye, channel 4, Chris Morris, Leaf Tea Shop, Michael Cummings, Mike Neary, Oxide Ghosts, Paedogeddon
Published:
Description:

Ahead of the release of Oxide Ghosts and premiere at Leaf, Getintothis’ Paul Fitzgerald looks back on the impact on popular culture of Brass Eye. Michael Cumming is set to bring his new film Oxide Ghosts to Liverpool for a screening and Q&A at Leaf on September 20. Celebrating the 20 year anniversary of Brass [...]

The post Brass Eye film Oxide Ghosts comes to Leaf for premiere and Q&A appeared first on Getintothis.

  more...
Brass Eye

Brass Eye

Ahead of the release of Oxide Ghosts and premiere at Leaf, Getintothis’ Paul Fitzgerald looks back on the impact on popular culture of Brass Eye.

Michael Cumming is set to bring his new film Oxide Ghosts to Liverpool for a screening and Q&A at Leaf on September 20.

Celebrating the 20 year anniversary of Brass Eye which he directed, Oxide Ghosts is a collection of unscreened and uncut outtakes from the series.

Like many of the greatest comedies, Brass Eye didn’t hang around. It arrived in 1997 after some protracted legal wrangles, with more than a little earnest concern from Channel 4 executives. It’s interesting to note that there were only six episodes broadcast (followed four years later with a one off episode, the brilliant Paedogeddon).

For all its brevity, this brash and sharp, fast-edit parody of sensationalist news coverage, narcissistic celebrity culture and moral outrage certainly left its mark. It’s fair to say that Chris Morris and his team re-wrote the rule book for satirical broadcasting simply by breaking many of the (usually unspoken) rules which existed at the time.

Complex legal issues dictate that Oxide Ghosts will never see a full commercial release, and the original production company spent some time after the series engaged in the paying of more than a handful of fines. Morris himself is notoriously publicity shy, but has seen the film and given it his blessing.

Nicolas Roeg: five of the best from the director of The Man Who Fell to Earth

As well as the screening of Oxide Ghosts, Michael Cumming, an engaging and affable character, will also be present for a Q&A hosted by actor and musician Mike Neary. The evening holds much promise for fans of this innovative and bold comedy series.

Oxide Ghosts will be screened at Leaf on September 20. Leaf also sell Cake. Shocking.

The post Brass Eye film Oxide Ghosts comes to Leaf for premiere and Q&A appeared first on Getintothis.

1967: The darker side of the summer of love ? Top 10
Category Top 10, 13th Floor Elevators, Are the village green preservation soceity, Arthur Lee, Austin powers, Big Brother and The Holding Company, Blur, Brian Auger, Captain Beefheart and The Magic Band, Donovan, Forever Changes, Foxygen, Frank Zappa and the Mothers of Invention, Grace Slick, Grateful Dead, Hunter S. Thompson, Incense and Peppermints, janis joplin, Jefferson Airplane, Jimi Hendirx, Julie Driscoll, Live and Let Live, Love, Lynyrd Skynyrd, MC5, Muddy Waters, Pentangle, Pink Flloyd, Psych Out, Quilt, Rose Windows., Strawberry alarm clock, Surrealistic Pillow, The Beatles, The Byrds, The Doors, The Ecologist, The Electric Prunes, The Everly Brothers, The Incredible String Band, The Kinks, the Seeds, The Stooges, The Trinity, The west Coast Pop Art Experimental Band, underground, Warren Zevon
Published:
Description:

With the anniversary of the summer of love upon us, Getintothis’ Gary Aster delves into the darker side to the pivotal summer 1967 is remembered for many reasons, It was a year of breakthroughs for liberal social causes and an abundance of classic albums. This was the year that homosexuality was decriminalised in the UK, [...]

The post 1967: The darker side of the summer of love – Top 10 appeared first on Getintothis.

  more...
Another Kinks box-set anyone?

The Kinks

With the anniversary of the summer of love upon us, Getintothis’ Gary Aster delves into the darker side to the pivotal summer

1967 is remembered for many reasons, It was a year of breakthroughs for liberal social causes and an abundance of classic albums.

This was the year that homosexuality was decriminalised in the UK, a new publication, The Ecologist, introduced Green politics and concern for the natural environment to wider audiences, feminism was emboldened as women took advantage of their recently extended reproductive rights via the increasing availability of the pill and legalised abortions, and in the US the civil rights movement continued to gather momentum, whilst protests against the Vietnam war moved from university campuses out into wider society.

A year later these tensions erupted into widespread civil unrest throughout much of Europe and North America. Since the emergence of punk in the mid-70s it has become fashionable to dismiss the hippie era as a time of naïve political optimism that achieved little, but this is a reading of history which ignores the many significant gains that were made and the still ongoing struggles which originated then.

When set against the influence of subsequent subcultures, the hippies were arguably high achievers and some commentators, argue that it marked the high point, or ?high water-mark? as Hunter S Thompson phrased it, of 20th century youth culture.

In musical terms, 1967 presents us with an embarrassment of riches. Pink Floyd, Jimi Hendrix and The Doors all released their classic stunning debut albums and, of course, The Beatles unleashed Sgt. Pepper onto an unsuspecting world.

Those records are very well known and much discussed so the focus here is on other psychedelic sounds emanating from the US and UK, where this music originated and where two separate and distinct aspects to psychedelia became dominant. Of course psychedelia was by no means restricted to these two nations and its influence was soon to be heard worldwide.

Today, music fans can collect compilation albums which sample the psychedelic sounds of places as disparate as Latin and South America, Japan, Turkey, South Africa and even pre-revolutionary Iran, amongst many others. But these records all came a little later, influenced by the exciting new sounds originating in the UK and US.

Similarly, there were numerous important precursors to psychedelia before 1967. Credit is due to The Beatles, 13th Floor Elevators,  Frank Zappa and the Mothers of Invention, The Seeds and Donovan (to name just a few) who all released albums in 1966 that were ahead of the curve. Although the summer of love of 1967 deservedly holds a key position in the popular imagination, it did not mark the beginning of psychedelia but rather its zenith.

When choosing from amongst the many records released in 1967 some tough choices must be made to pare it down to a mere 10. Today it has become fashionable to deny that there were ever any golden eras in the history of rock and pop but this seems churlish. Some unspecified thing in the air (or koolaid) must have contributed to such a vintage year of abundance.

The legacy of those times is still evident today. However, in such an eventful period some shifts and changes may pass by largely unnoticed. One cultural shift which now appears to make perfect sense with the benefit of hindsight probably appeared trivial at the time, but it was a game-changer for popular music. 1966 was the last year in both the US and the UK when sales of singles exceeded those of albums. From 1967 onwards the album emerged as the key format of popular music; the canvass on which it was best exemplified and its preferred mode of expression. Here are 10 choice cuts released on the cusp of this shift.

Captain Beefheart

Captain Beefheart

Jefferson Airplane ? Surrealistic Pillow

Of all the albums to emerge from the San Francisco scene in 1967, Jefferson Airplane?s second offering was the most commercially successful and 50 years later it?s still not hard to hear why.

Its success was no doubt bolstered by the presence of two hit singles, both of them penned by the Airplane?s new singer Grace Slick, and they remain probably the band?s two most well-known songs. White Rabbit cleverly took an obvious drug song to the top of the charts whilst avoiding a ban. Its Alice in Wonderland-inspired lyric granted the band sufficient leeway to plead their innocence with plausible deniability, yet their target audience could hardly have been in any doubt as to the song?s real intent.

Somebody to Love, the album?s other hit single, made for an obvious dance floor filler and captured something of the naïve spirit of free love advocated by the hippies. Elsewhere, the record evokes a gentler, peace and love vibe with a sound as much indebted to the folk music of the previous generation?s beatniks as it was to the pop charts, thereby highlighting the band?s roots.

The sound was original and recognisable after hearing only a few bars ? no mean feat in such an over-crowded scene as San Francisco in the mid to late 60s. It?s a sound that has proved influential and can be still be detected today in the music of Foxygen, Quilt and Rose Windows amongst many others. Jefferson Airplane mastered shifts in dynamic range with apparent ease and this record has moments of quiet beauty absent from the music of many of their contemporaries. But this isn?t to say that the Airplane lacked the capacity to rock. They were a tight, well-rehearsed band of accomplished musicians who had earned their stripes playing the now legendary venues of the West Coast circuit and this, their second album, relies far more on the band?s musicianship and song-writing talents than clever production techniques and sound effects to achieve its results.

Love ? Forever Changes

The 60s produced more than its fair share of lost classics and this is surely one of the best. It sank without a trace at first, but soon picked up a cult following amongst eager collectors whose enthusiasm eventually brought it to wider notice. Modest success for the record in the UK ensured that this lost classic did not remain lost forever. Initial poor sales led to the record being quickly deleted, but it is now a permanent fixture of all good record shops and hasn?t been out of print in over two decades ? quite a turn around.

Like their label-mates The Doors, Love were a band who represented the darker side of psychedelia and this album might be described as the sound of storm clouds gathering over the summer of love. Love had some sympathy for the hippie movement but remained doubtful of its success. The lyrics, amongst other concerns, reflected the racial tensions then writ large in a US that still hadn?t come to terms with the civil rights movement, something that Love, a multi-racial band, (in those days something of a novelty) had first-hand experience of. Band leader Arthur Lee castigates American apartheid on Live and Let Live, media distortions on The Daily Planet and the madness of political brinkmanship which risked apocalypse on The Red Telephone.

Musically it is not a psychedelic record in an obvious sense ? there are no sitars or backwards guitars etc. It is often described as ?baroque pop? and there?s something of the band?s earlier folk-tinged sound still evident here, though punctuated with unexpected bursts of fuzz guitar. The song-writing is mature and world-weary; certainly nothing like the naïve, ‘love is all you need’ optimism which typifies much first-wave psychedelia. The overall sound is greatly enhanced by string and brass arrangements, largely the work of band leader Arthur Lee and producer Bruce Botnick. It has become a firm critics? favourite and regularly features on ?best album of all time? lists in the music press. Listen to it and hear why.

The Kinks – ?are the Village Green Preservation Society

Another lost classic which failed to chart on either side of the Atlantic but is remembered today partly because of the relative success of the band behind it and partly because music this good will eventually find an audience. In many ways it?s a record that is out of step with its time. It contains none of the fashionable trappings of then contemporary rock and pop ? no acid-drenched excesses or gimmicky sound effects ? which, in its own way, makes this a pretty far-out album; far removed from prevailing trends at the time certainly. The sparse, occasionally ornate and tasteful arrangements allow the strengths of the song-writing to shine through.

One obvious theme is memory or nostalgia, but the sort of rose-tinted nostalgia which harks back to a picture-book world (or more precisely, England) that never really was; a pre-war England of steam trains, village greens, people taking formal pictures of each other and the trappings of Victoriana. These were common enough themes of first wave psychedelia but Ray Davies? songs here present us with black and white snap-shots rather than the surreal, kaleidoscopic-lens distortions of his contemporaries. This makes all the difference to songs like the title track and Big Sky. Regularly re-issued, today the album continues to attract admirers and was surely an influence on bands like XTC and Blur who clocked the English whimsy, humour and gentle, affectionate satire it contains and built entire careers from it.

Captain Beefheart and the Magic Band ? Safe as Milk

When A & M records first heard the demos for this album they dropped the Capt?n on the grounds that his music was not safe for label boss Jerry Moss?s daughter to listen to. The band consequently split up and re-formed adding drummer John French and a 16 year old Ry Cooder on slide guitar, so in the long-term this may have been for the best. Re-constituted, the band signed to Buddha records and went on to record this, their debut offering.

Still a wild and lively listen, along with producers Rob Krasnow and Richard Perry, the band shaved off some of the rougher edges to their music to produce this stunning debut, probably the most accessible record of their career. The blues permeates, with cover versions of Grown So Ugly and Sure ?Nuff Yes I Do jostling for space alongside Muddy Waters-inspired compositions and altogether stranger tracks like the theremin-driven Electricity. But the most remarkable sound contained herein is the extraordinary range of the good Captain?s microphone-destroying voice which must be heard to be believed. Again this is a record that failed to chart on either side of the Atlantic, but John Peel?s early championing of the record did allow for some modest cult success here in the UK. Not as experimental or challenging as some of the band?s more celebrated releases, it is however a good place to start for the uninitiated.

The Incredible String Band ? The 5000 Spirits of the Layers of the Onion

Housed in a brilliantly multi-coloured sleeve, The Incredible String Band?s second album bears all the hallmarks of a band who had recently, ahem, ?turned on?. An entirely acoustic affair, it transcends the rather staid traditions of folk music and embraces the summer of love zeitgeist. Armed with an array of recently acquired exotic instruments obtained whilst travelling in Morocco, the duo of Mike Heron and Robin Williamson, accompanied by the brilliant double bass of Danny Thompson, recorded one of the defining albums of a genre later to become known as acid-folk.

There is fairy-tale whimsy, mysticism, obscure drug-references, philosophical musing and a cast of mythical characters to be found here. Yet, there is also a healthy dose of cynicism on the satirical Way Back in the 1960s and a tender song of love lost in the shape of First Girl I Loved. Although some of the more unfamiliar instruments played here are plucked with what can only be described as amateur enthusiasm, the combination of sounds is exotic, adventurous and beguiling. Danny Thompson (who had previously played with Donovan, was about to join Pentangle and who would later play with John Martyn and Nick Drake) helps to keep things reasonably grounded. Produced by Joe Boyd in the same studio where he had recently recorded Pink Floyd?s debut single, and as ever championed by John Peel, the album was a surprise minor hit (edging into the UK top 30) and has rarely been out of print since.

Big Brother and the Holding Company ? ?Featuring Janis Joplin

This is an earthy, bluesy, bar-room psychedelic debut and the perfect vehicle with which to showcase Janis Joplin?s incredible singing prowess. Others may prefer the less restrained live recordings of 1968?s follow-up Cheap Thrills (housed in comic-book artist Robert Crumb?s memorable sleeve) but for this writer, these initial studio recordings issued by jazz label Mainstream are the real deal. Possibly still awed by the unfamiliarity of the recording studio environment, Joplin?s singing is more controlled, restrained and therefore more evocative and satisfying as a consequence. This isn?t to say that the she doesn?t soar to great heights and pull out all the stops here, but she does so with greater care and economy. There?s an appreciation of dynamic range and call and response evident here which rarely translated to the band?s live performances.

Janis?s band will never be remembered as the most rehearsed and accomplished, but their plain and unadorned playing provides space for, and the perfect accompaniment to, Joplin?s unparalleled raw vocal gymnastics. The album features Down on Me, one of their most celebrated tracks and a near hit in the US. On the ironically entitled Women is Losers Joplin issues a proto-feminist message and a challenge to male dominance, which must have been satisfying to record for someone who had fled her hometown because of the cruel misogyny she experienced and which had prevented her achieving the success her talent so obviously deserved.

The Electric Prunes ? Underground

A band who are remembered mainly for their one hit single I Had Too Much To Dream Last Night not included on this record (though it would have made a better fit than on the group?s debut), but a standout track on Lenny Kaye?s celebrated Nuggets compilation. Their self-titled debut had suffered from too much record company interference and too few of the band?s own compositions, but this was a wrong that was partly righted on this, their second album. With their producer distracted by a Grateful Dead album he was working on concurrently, this left the band free to follow their own instincts and it pays off.

They embraced recent technical innovations and deserve credit for being among the first to explore the more exotic possibilities of psychedelia and electronic rock, producing a record marked by a rich variety of then still largely untapped sound effects. Fuzz tone guitars, wah-wah pedals, reverb, temolo via ?wiggle stick? onto the tape and various oscillators are all employed to bend and stretch the sound into unfamiliar shapes. Big City begins with a slowed down auto harp and Dr Do-Good is awash with backwards guitars, revisiting the sound of their earlier hit, but with a deranged vocal that probably prevented it from ever troubling the pop charts.

Lyrically the band were on point with counter-cultural concerns; Captain Glory referenced hallucinogenic ?morning glory? seeds then used by adventurous hippies as an organic alternative to LSD and ?The Great Banana Hoax? gently mocked naïve hippies conned into smoking banana skins by an infamous (and baseless) urban legend then circulating which claimed that they could get you high. Overall, the album remains The Electric Prunes? most imaginative and satisfying work.

Julie Driscoll, Brian Auger and the Trinity ? Open

A group consisting of some of the most accomplished musicians on the UK scene in ?67 who completed recordings of their well-rehearsed debut album in a single day, and who are now most remembered for their cover version of Dylan?s This Wheel?s On Fire, which became a hit single in early ?68 and was later used as the title song for Absolutely Fabulous. Distribution problems led to few copies reaching UK record stores in time to coincide with their late ?67 tour and many sources mistakenly (but understandably) list this as a 1968 release, since this was when the album really broke through.

Unlike most of the groups on this list, the band came from the jazz circuit and those origins are apparent throughout. The album?s 10 tracks are divided between the better-known Driscoll-fronted songs and the Trinity?s superlative instrumentals. Driscoll was the personification of Carnaby Street cool, possessed of model good looks and a superb, distinctive voice. Her addition to The Trinity gave the band a new dimension and brought them to a much wider audience. She also helped to steer the band in a more contemporary, rock direction. It was Driscoll who opted for the album?s closing track, a chilled and brooding cover version of Donovan?s Season of the Witch. Elsewhere the record provides plentiful supplies of dancefloor-fillers with Auger?s arrangements and groovy Hammond organ helping to shape the sound of UK psychedelia, despite their non-rockin? roots. The album?s generous, ?anything-goes? approach epitomises the spirit of its time and captures the group at their very best.

The West Coast Pop-Art Experimental Band ? Volume 2

Although the band was largely a commercial failure at the time, WCPAEB?s (let?s embrace the abbreviation) reputation has grown to such an extent that it?s probably inaccurate still to describe them as a cult band. This, their second album proper, is generally considered their best work. The music combines perfect pop melodies with experimental dissonance to create a slightly unnerving and bewildering effect. WCPAEB were a band who expressed the darker underside of psychedelia. Though they shared many of the hippies? common lyrical themes, these were laced with a dark humour and irony that was at odds with the more naïve peace and love hippie vibe of many of their contemporaries.

Smell of Incense is an almost perfect slice of psych-pop and the nearest they ever got to achieving a hit; unbelievably the single stalled at 56. In contrast, Carte Blanche sounds like proto-punk and anticipates the sound of The Stooges and MC5. On In the Arena band impresario Bob Markley yells his dark poetry through a megaphone. But there are quiet moments too, such as Buddha, a love song to Markley?s Japanese girlfriend which prominently features a koto, a traditional Japanese harp-like instrument and a sound previously unheard in western pop.

Housed in a sleeve reminiscent of Warhol?s Silver Pillows, the back cover declared ‘no one censored us. We got to say everything we wanted to say in the way we wanted to say it.’ It is still surprising that such a challenging and unconventional record was released by Reprise. Presumably Reprise label capo di capo Frank Sinatra?s attention was elsewhere at the time of its release.

The Strawberry Alarm Clock ? Incense and Peppermints

Almost a supergroup in reverse, Strawberry Alarm Clock?s precocious, young and talented members (aged between 16 and 21) went on to join or work with Lynyrd Skynyrd, The Everly Brothers, Warren Zevon and Donna Summer. Another became one of the most celebrated US film soundtrack composers of the late 20th century. Little wonder their 1967 debut is such a treat. They are best known for this album?s title track, which eventually climbed to the number 1 spot and was featured prominently in the first Austin Powers movie.

Amazingly the album was written and recorded in a mere two weeks after the already-recorded title track hit the charts. With so little time available, all hands were required on deck and the writing credits reflect this. The record opens with the epic length The World?s on Fire – a chugging, frugging psychedelic dance floor favourite soon to be snapped up for the soundtrack of psych-sploitation movie Psych-Out. Elsewhere on Hummin? Happy, the band, ahem, ?paid homage? (to be generous) to The Byrds? Eight Miles High. Meanwhile Rainy Day Mushroom Pillow gives a nod to the more folk-tinged music emanating from San Francisco and Pass Time with the SAC harks back to the earlier sounds of surf rock, an overlooked genre that was clearly inspirational to the many garage psych bands emerging in ?67.

It?s an album that?s very much of its time, and most of the clichés of psychedelia ? sitars, backwards guitars and studio trickery ? are employed here, yet it?s done with such style and charm that they get away with it. At that point those sounds were de rigeur and the clichés had yet to be established. If you?re looking for an album that encapsulates the variety of US psychedelic sounds from the original summer of love then this is a serious contender for best exemplar.

[paypal_donation]

The post 1967: The darker side of the summer of love – Top 10 appeared first on Getintothis.

In the Pit #15: Georgia Flynn
Category All Talk, Brothers Of Mine, Clean Cut Kid, eleanor nelly, georgia flynn, in the pit, Loyle Carner
Published:
Description:

Martin Waters sits down to talk photography with Getintothis’ resident Jiu Jitsu expert and photographer Georgia Flynn to talk gigs, Coldpay and the Shout About it Festival. It’s a busy time for Georgia, aside from shooting gigs for Getintothis, she is also the founder of the Shout About it Festival, which takes place this weekend at District. [...]

The post In the Pit #15: Georgia Flynn appeared first on Getintothis.

  more...
Coldplay

Coldplay

Martin Waters sits down to talk photography with Getintothis’ resident Jiu Jitsu expert and photographer Georgia Flynn to talk gigs, Coldpay and the Shout About it Festival.

It’s a busy time for Georgia, aside from shooting gigs for Getintothis, she is also the founder of the Shout About it Festival, which takes place this weekend at District.  Spread across two days, the festival focuses on exploring gig photography, with photographers from across the globe, with the aim of building a large community of gig photographers.

Ahead of the festival, we managed to grab a few minutes with Georgia to put the now traditional Getintothis In the Pit questions to her.

Getintothis:  Tell us a bit about yourself and how you got into photography.

GF: I got my first SLR camera when I was 15 as I always had a passion for making anything creative. I took my camera absolutely everywhere, begged friends to be a model and photographed anything and everything. I then went off to the University Of Westminster where I did a degree in Contemporary Media Practice.

I kind of abandoned photography during my time in University to concentrate on other forms of media. It was in my third year when I started going to friend’s gigs around London and bought a new camera and got back into it. When I moved back to the Wirral my first action was to get into gig photography so I started to contact local publications to ask if they could get me in to shoot a gig, the rest is history.

Getintothis: What was the first gig you shot?

GF: I don?t really count the gigs I shot in London because I was really just messing around with my camera and didn’t realise I would like shooting gigs. I?d say my first gig shoot was Loyle Carner at 24 Kitchen Street.

Getintothis: So what?s in your camera bag when you?re shooting?

GF: Not gonna lie, I don?t carry much because kit is expensive. I have a Nikon D7100 with an 18 – 105mm lens which has got me through pretty much every gig I’ve ever shot. I have taken spare lenses in the past but I always just end up sticking to the same kit.

Wildfires

Wildfires

Getintothis: Which is your favourite shot?

GF: My favourite shot changes all the time. I love different shots for many reasons. Whether it’s how hard I worked to get the shot or how much I like the band I shoot there is a different reason for everyone. I?d say my favourite at the moment is one I took of Frank Turner at Liverpool Guild last year. I managed to catch loads of beaming red light in the background. It?s always good when there is a huge stage production because it gives photographers so much to play with.

Getintothis: Any terrible or fun shoots you?d like to share?

GF: I recently had an opportunity to photography Coldplay in Cardiff. It felt like a terrible day because I found out super last minute and literally had to grab my bag, take holiday from work and get in the car to drive to Cardiff. The drive there took 6 hours in the torrential rain.

I almost didn’t make it on time and turned up looking like a drowned rat in a pit of photographers that had clearly been in the industry for much longer than me. I have never been so anxious to get a good shot to make it all worth it.

When the countdown started and the confetti cannons went off, everything changed. I was suddenly in a world of colour and had so many challenges to face in 10 minutes, all while hearing some absolute bangers. I was rushed out of the pit and sent on my way after 10 minutes but it went from something I thought would turn out terrible to one of the most fun, magical nights of my life.

Eliza and the Bear

Eliza and the Bear

Getintothis: So what?s your favourite bit of kit?

GF: I shot with an 18 – 200mm lens recently and I absolutely loved it. It?s definitely the next thing on my wish list (amongst many other things).

Getintothis: Any particularly difficult musicians?

GF: I have never really experienced a difficulty with musicians as such it?s more the venue. I?ve found it?s always difficult to collect your photo pass when shooting in bigger venues. They just seem to always be hesitant to give you your pass even though you know it?s there.

Blink 182

Blink 182

Getintothis: Who are your favourite Liverpool bands to shoot?

GF: My ultimate favourite has to be Clean Cut Kid. Other than that I regularly shoot Eleanor Nelly and Brothers of Mine who are always great to see live and photograph. I love going to festivals around Liverpool like Threshold and LIMF that give me a chance to shoot loads of local bands in one day. It?s all about supporting your local music scene.

Getintothis: Where?s your favourite place to shoot?

GF: I?ve only ever shot there once but I absolutely loved The Ritz in Manchester. I also love The Guild in Liverpool. Anywhere that puts on a good light show so I can photograph as much colour as possible.

Getintothis: What one tip would you give anyone starting out?

GF: Shoot as much as you can. Don?t worry about taking 1000 pictures in your first couple of gigs it?s how you learn and get better with time. If a bunch of photographers are taking pictures all from the same place in a pit, go to the opposite end and get a completely different shot to everyone else. Also, enjoy the gig and listen to the music. Get a real feel for the atmosphere and it will show in your photography.

Getintothis: What?s the worst advice you?ve been given?

GF: You need an expensive camera to shoot. Just take what you?ve got and work with it and keep going.

Getintothis: Any favourite photographers?

GF: Everyone on my Instagram feed it seems. I love the work of John Gilleese, Deb Kloeden and Trust A Fox to name a few but there are so many incredible gig photographers out there it?s great to take inspiration from everyone.

Getintothis: What would be your ideal gig to shoot?

GF: Anything with a good stage production as it gives the biggest challenge. There is nothing worse than photographing a gig in almost pitch black with a couple of red lights. Ideally, one where I’m into the music as well. I always love shooting Clean Cut Kid because I’m a big fan and there is always great stage production, I end up dancing while taking my pictures.

You can see more of Georgia’s work at:
Website: www.georgiaflynn.com
Twitter: @georgeporge13
Instagram: georgiaflynncreative

The Shout about it Festival takes place at District, Liverpool on August 19 & 20

The Kooks The Kooks The Kooks FestEvol Generation Tor Miller Walking on Cars Little Comets Cabezudos

The post In the Pit #15: Georgia Flynn appeared first on Getintothis.

Lost Liverpool #21: The Cavern Mecca and the start of Beatles tourism
Category Opinion, Adele, Allan Williams, Arctic Monkeys, Beatleweek, Bob Wooler, cavern mecca, charlie lennon, Cilla Black, cynthia lennon, Del Pike, Echo and the Bunnymen, Getintothis, jim hughes, John Lennon, liz hughes, Pale Fountains, Paul McCartney, rick buckler, Sean Lennon, Teardrop Explodes, The Beatles, The Cavern, The Jam, victor spinetti, Yoko Ono
Published:
Description:

Examining the importance of a lesser-told tale from Liverpool’s 1980s, Getintothis’ Del Pike revisits the unsung heroes of The Cavern Mecca and witnesses the birth of Beatles tourism. As the recent Cavern celebrations attest, January 2017 being the 60th anniversary of the legendary venue, the memory of The Beatles and the Merseybeat era that surrounded them [...]

The post Lost Liverpool #21: The Cavern Mecca and the start of Beatles tourism appeared first on Getintothis.

  more...
The Beatles larging it in The Cavern

The Beatles making history in The Cavern

Examining the importance of a lesser-told tale from Liverpool’s 1980s, Getintothis’ Del Pike revisits the unsung heroes of The Cavern Mecca and witnesses the birth of Beatles tourism.

As the recent Cavern celebrations attest, January 2017 being the 60th anniversary of the legendary venue, the memory of The Beatles and the Merseybeat era that surrounded them has not gone away.

The Cavern’s upcoming Beatleweek at the end of August will once again prove this point further. So massive were The Beatles it was inevitable even during their heyday that they would still be selling music into the next century and beyond.

However there was a time in Liverpool when it felt that the whole thing was a dream and for a while, The Beatles didn?t really matter.

It takes a while to regain cult status after world domination and the long hair and beard years of The Beatles dampened the mania of their earlier years. Gone were the screaming school-kids, they had grown up, got jobs and like the band themselves, mellowed. The early 70s was a time when a lull fell over the city and music fans were looking elsewhere for their thrills.

Mathew Street, that hub of creativity lost its beloved Cavern when, in 1973, the bulldozers moved in to make way for work on the underground rail system. It was short-sighted, imagine Gracelands succumbing to the same fate. Its removal left Mathew Street without a heart, with just The Grapes pub remaining as a reminder as to where The Beatles famously drank before heading into The Cavern.

In a recent documentary by local director Paul Sudbury, Cavern Mecca: Rebirth of The Beatles, fans talk of how tourists from all over the world would still come to Liverpool to see the home of The Beatles and how they would stand bewildered on the pavement of Mathew Street looking for some evidence of their presence.

1970s opening times wouldn?t even guarantee the warmth of The Grapes, at that time the only pub on the street. 1974 saw the unveiling of local sculptor, Arthur Dooley?s tribute to The Beatles, Four Lads Who Shook the World, still there, high on the wall just by Lennon?s Bar, but the iconic Eric?s would not open until 1976.

Beatles fanatics Jim and Liz Hughes, a married couple who saw the gap that the removal of The Cavern had left, opened the Magical Mystery Store on North John Street. Selling records, posters, tee shirts and badges, it was as much a meeting place as a shop, somewhere at last that Beatles fans could come in and feel at home.

The Hugheses were a quiet unassuming couple, the most unlikely pair to be responsible for what has now developed into a full-scale industry in Liverpool, Beatles tourism. Friends are trying to this day to see the couple rewarded with some recognition for this achievement, possibly in the form of Freemen of the City but the powers that be are not biting.

In the case of Liz it would be an honorary recognition as she sadly passed away in 2008. A memorial plaque is on display upstairs in Flanagan?s Apple at the Met Quarter end of Mathew Street adorned with a photograph of the couple smiling proudly with Paul McCartney.

This upstairs space was the site of their next venture.

cav 2

Cavern Mecca early 80s on the site of Flanagan’s Apple. Photo Credit – Patricia Jones

In January 1981, Jim and Liz opened Cavern Mecca. The idea was to open an official meeting place for Beatles fans and tourists. The interior was built by volunteers, friends of Jim and Liz and included a small-scale mock-up of The Cavern, a coffee bar, galleries of related artefacts, mainly from their own belongings and a fireplace in the corner that would become a haven for cold and weary travellers. The Magical Mystery Store too found its way into Cavern Mecca and the team of sales assistants would become welcome faces to the many regular visitors.

The opening of the centre was brought forward to just after the New Year as hordes of fans had gathered in the city to mourn the loss of John Lennon who was murdered in New York the previous month. They still had nowhere to gather and Cavern Mecca was an unfinished but a perfect shelter. An actual mecca.

In October 1977 former Beatles manager, the recently deceased Allan Williams, along with original Cavern Club DJ Bob Wooler, organised the first Beatles conventions in the long closed Pickwicks club. It was a low key and suitably shabby affair, that allegedly included an impromptu stripping-off race instigated by Allan with a ten-pound prize. It was a start and the idea showed potential.

Clearly there was a need for such events. In 1981 after further attempts to organise a regular event, Jim and Liz took over and organised the first official MerseyBeatle Extravaganza at The Royal Court Theatre. Later conventions at The Adelphi Hotel would prove massively popular and kick-started the annual celebrations that Cavern City Tours continue to organise to this day.

cav flyer

Flyer for Cavern Mecca

I was a part of this scene, first visiting the Cavern Mecca, or the Beatles Museum as we called it, one night after school and it was the friendliest place I had ever known. As a shy kid coming from a particularly rough school, friendly faces were a rarity, particularly from others my age. Before long I was in there every Saturday making more and more friends and for the first time feeling a part of the City scene and gaining in confidence.

The mocked up Cavern stage would play host to guest speakers and bands but mainly housed a small TV and VHS player, showing endless glorious footage of The Beatles, their films, gigs, interviews and fascinating glimpses of their solo stuff that you couldn?t see elsewhere.

We would sit for hours, only coming out for a coffee and a mess about at the counter. Being only 15 years old my main memories of Jim and Liz are being told off for making a noise and being threatened with expulsion. God help us if we were summoned to the office. We must have been a right pain in the arse.

Want Beatles? You got it…

Cavern Mecca always seemed to have a string of visitors including the actor Victor Spinetti, who had appeared in the first three Beatles films, John Lennon?s ex-wife Cynthia and Rick Buckler from The Jam. It was a great place to get autographs. A few years later when Yoko Ono would visit Liverpool with a young Sean Lennon, they were given a royal welcome from the Beatles community and were shown John Lennon?s childhood home on Menlove Avenue and the children’s home at Strawberry Field.

Cavern Mecca

Cavern Mecca – Entrance to the mocked up Cavern. Photo Credit – Patricia Jones

The area surrounding Cavern Mecca came alive during the time that the centre existed, and a community of Beatle people grew. There was us, the ones too young to remember but also the likes of Allan Williams and Bob Wooler, always on hand to tell tales of their involvement in creating The Beatles legend.

John Lennon?s Uncle Charlie was seemingly ever-present to give his version of events. He became a surrogate uncle to us all and was a fascinating figure with his instantly recognisable Lennon nose and train driver?s cap. Other folk such as the wonderful Pat Daniels, who had worked alongside Cilla in the Cavern Cloakroom, and former Cavern bouncer Paddy Delaney would also be regulars. All of these people have now passed away and are missed by many.

Cavern Mecca itself would create local legends, none more so than Eddie Porter. This charismatic figure who would later be known by some as The Walrus, worked at the centre and was without doubt the heart of the place. He taught me to be who I am and was a guiding light to so many of us young fans at that time, making us feel safe in what was then a potentially rough place to be.

A regular face at the bar of The Grapes and carrying on his career as a tour guide on the now iconic Magical Mystery Tour coaches, there are very few Mathew Street regulars and City dwellers who have not at some point crossed paths or shared a pint and a story with Eddie. His 1987 book Beatle People chronicled the folk who drifted in and out of the 1980s Beatles scene, I am proud to be included in Eddie’s role call of Dancing Girls and Cavern Mecca Fellas.

Cavern Mecca

Cavern Mecca – Main area. Photo credit- Patricia Jones

Due to health issues Jim and Liz closed Cavern Mecca in 1984, it was a heart-breaking moment for many. It re-opened briefly in the newly built Cavern Walks but the atmosphere was never the same. Gone was the musty, dusty smell of the original, it was just too clean. Regulars visited maybe once and never returned leaving just the few hardcore fans to support a venture that should never have been.

We continued to meet, all a bit older now, in Lennon’s Bar and The Grapes. The girls continued to follow Mojo Filter, a Liverpool beat band who mixed 60s classics with a few originals, who played around town, mainly at The Beaky on Victoria Street. Saturday nights would be spent religiously at the newly opened Cavern with DJ Ron Jones.

It seems strange now to think of the great Liverpool music that was being created alongside what we were doing, (Bunnymen, Teardrop, Frankie) which we didn’t really notice. Some remained on Mathew Street; others including myself, drifted away.

spinetti

bob wooler

A young Del with Victor Spinetti and Cavern DJ Bob Wooler at The Beatles Conventions mid 80s

The new Cavern, as we all know, was not exactly located  in the original space and was mocked as such by many, but as the years have passed it has become as important a part of Beatles tourism as the real Cavern was to the original regulars. Acts including The Arctic Monkeys, Adele and Macca himself have graced the stage since it re-opened and it continues to attract massive crowds day and night.

The Mathew Street that exists today seems so far removed from those revivalist days of the 80s when it felt that the street belonged to us, particularly on a Saturday night when the Street is overflowing with stags and hens. It felt safe and in some ways quaint then. Hard to believe that this quiet little backstreet was where The Beatles plied their trade before heading off to conquer the world.

The seeds that were sown by Jim and Liz have bloomed into a city packed with  Beatles-themed hotels, bars, cafés, even a University. John Lennon airport ensures that travellers coming to Liverpool can enjoy The Beatles experience from the second they touch down. Mathew Street itself though has become lost in a sea of themed pubs, illuminations and noise. There are havens to be found but the Beatles element feels a lot more corporate than it once did.

There is a belief that without Jim and Liz, Beatles tourism would not have happened quite so quickly and effectively as it did. So many people owe a them debt for their creation of a magical era that would otherwise have been lost in the late 70s and through the 80s.

An annual Cavern Mecca reunion, run by long-standing regular Julie Sudbury, takes place every year in The Cavern giving us all an opportunity to relieve memories, and as our families and group of friends grow, it gets busier year on year.

The 2016 event in November included a screening at the Museum of Liverpool the following day of Paul Sudbury?s documentary, Cavern Mecca the Rebirth of The Beatles. The hour-long film successfully reflects the era and pays homage to the work of Jim and Liz Hughes.

A lot of money has been made from the legacy of The Beatles but Jim and Liz?s efforts were most definitely from the heart.

  • Beatleweek commences on August 23 and information is available at www.internationalbeatleweek.com

 

All Cavern Mecca images by Pat Trish Jones.

The post Lost Liverpool #21: The Cavern Mecca and the start of Beatles tourism appeared first on Getintothis.


Now Supporters
Advertise Here
Blogs
Site Info

 |  Copyright © 2008 - 2017 by St Helens Now  |