Many years ago I ran a blog entitled ‘FFS’. Now you can add your own words to what the abbreviation stood for, but the title allowed me to write about any subject I chose. It was a personal affair and only a select few had access to it.
At that time I was really into buying art, paintings, drawings, water colours, oils etc., mainly of nude ladies (most of them had been painted by girls). I couldn’t believe I was able to buy such good quality original art at such low prices. I felt compelled, nay embarressed, not to write good reviews about the artists. I still have them all, mostly unframed, in rolled cardboard tubes upstairs.
I used to insert the paintings randomly into articles for no real or apparent reason as shown below.
Today, I stumbled across the blog for some reason and found the following article written almost five years ago.
It’s a fairly low-key affair and not the best review ever published about that great St Helens band Titor’s Insignia. I recall I was at a low ebb at the time after trying to get through a low point in the relationship with my daughter.
Anyway, here is the unabridged, unedited article:
Titor’s Insignia Live at The Citadel
Blog time again.
This week I went to watch a local band at my local music and arts venue, the Citadel in St Helens.
I have to say the night in general was a total flop. That was more due to my own expectations rather than the band.
I really had been looking forward to the gig and the night out and I thought Titor’s were the main band on.
It turned out that Titor’s seemed to be the support act for other bands on that night.
One of the band members, Peter Murphy, aka Bass Pee, is a part of my family so I felt as though I was obliged to write a great review.
Titor’s were first up on stage. Not a great position to be in with other bands to follow.
So, as you can image, the crowd were very low key when they came on.
I met my daughter Stephanie in the the foyer as we had previously arranged to go to the gig together. We are both massive music fans.
Steph was very lethargic as she works very hard during the week.
I thought the band will soon pick her up and she will feel much better once the rock ‘n’ roll started.
I have known Titor’s Insignia for about four years and I have chatted to the band leader, Stu Oggy, on several occasions in the past.
What I do know is that Stu is a very hard working lad and he takes the band and his music seriously.
The admission on the door was £5.00. Now, I know that doesn’t sound like a lot of money, but one way or another, I have worked hard for that money and I expect the band to do the same.
CDBaby say the following about Titor’s:
“Brought together in mid 2008, Titor’s Insignia have built themselves a solid
reputation, a crowd pleasing live set and pride themselves on raw
performances show after show.
“Their debut album “Fair City Riots” is
an electrifying concoction of influences ranging from Britpop to
classic rock with a sprinkling of Indie, and healthy dose of Punk thrown
in for good measure.
“For the members themselves, “Fair City Riots”
is much more than just a collection of songs. It is a diary of life
experiences; a down to earth tale of love and life, good times and bad,
and a window into what it means to be small town boys with big time
“From the mellow groove of “A Town Called Yesterday” and the
uplifting “Set in Stone”, to the classic foot stomping rock anthems
“Fair City Riots” and “I Don’t Love You”, this is definitely as good as
it gets if you like no nonsense, honest music.
“In this day and age
of over produced manufactured one hit wonders, “Fair City Riots” is
definately the proof you need that rock and roll is still very much
alive. Join Titor’s Insignia’s Fair City Riots as soon as you can, because afterall… You’re either on their side or in their way.”
To be honest, there is no point in writing anything different about their music because I couldn’t better this description. It is exactly what they are good at.
As live performers, I just felt let down and wanted more that didn’t come. Admittedly, by their third song I was moving on the spot and really enjoying what they were doing.
The band have Oasis and Stereophonics influences and it showed, too obviously in my opinion. I like the punk influences, but to be honest it’s too good and polished to be punk.
The band gave a very accomplished and technically excellent performance. They just didn’t do anything. I wanted excitement but it didn’t happen.
Rock ‘n’ roll surely should have more entertainment to it. It’s not enough to perform live and just stand there expecting eveyone to love you just because you have a great set of songs.
They are brilliant musicians and each stands out musically in their own right.
I can’t help feeling their strengths are in songwriting and recording and being very accomplished musicians. They are great at it and way above any local band I have heard at this level.
I was told before the gig that Bass Pee had turned up drunk. I could tell he was drunk when I saw him on stage but, to be fair, it didn’t seem to affect his playing ability and I thought he was excellent but I just don’t agree with someone turning up drunk for work.
I chatted to Stu Oggy after the gig and he was less than pleased. Stu said, “It’s like looking after kids, I am pissed off that Pee turned up drunk for a gig. I take the music very seriously, it is serious. One more slip up like this and he is out”. I said I didn’t blame him and I agreed him.
Rock ‘n’ roll.
I can’t fault Titor’s Insignia musically they are great, so 10/10 for all round musical ability but only 5/10 for live performances. I know they can be better.
After the gig, my daughter said, “I still feel really tired, would you mind if I went home”, I said of course not Steph, I understand. I went home too.
All the paintings shown above are original artworks owned by Barry Grady.
Review written by Barry Grady, 28 April 2013. Published here 11 January 2018.