Sunday, 8 December 2013

Gert's Back-Non-Stop November-Hamburg-edinburgh-Glasgow-Newcastle-30 Odd Years & General Round Up.


Blimey, time is flying and lots to report - Vic and the gnu were out and about throughout November, Hamburg with Subway Sect, Glasgow and Edinburgh with The Sexual Objects, Newcastle with Subway Sect and everyone involved is busy getting 30 Odd Years ready for release, it's sounding great. Usually at this time of year, anticipating the joys of the festive season, I turn in to a bit of a  Grinch but there hasn't been time. SAD has usually dampened my customary joie de vivre by December but perhaps because we actually had a decent quota of sunshine and warmth in 2013 there is no sign of it yet. (Still time!). Preparations well under way now for the Sect's last two gigs of 2013 - the two Christmas Specials the 6 piece Sect with the wonderful, inimitable Asbo Derek.  First up on 13th December- everyone always looks forward to visits to the seaside to play for Spinning Chilli Presents at The Green Door Store Brighton, always a lark and for the special we've got a raffle, crackers, mince pies, gnu's sweet treat mementos and lots of merch.......

Below is a video of Asbo Derek performing probably my favourite song of theirs - succinctly getting to the nub of the matter using five words with wit, humour and a good tune is a rare art form. (If you know who the subject of the song is, try singing it to yourself and keeping a straight face) It was filmed the last night Vic and Subway Sect enjoyed a night of musical magic and mayhem at the seaside for Spinning Chilli in April this year.
                                        https://www.facebook.com/asbo.derek.9?fref=ts
 I know this is a bit late but a few tickets are left for 13th December as I write:
 http://www.wegottickets.com/event/234123  https://www.facebook.com/spinningchilli?fref=ts
 https://www.facebook.com/events/543458325689892/?ref_dashboard_filter=upcoming
Then on Saturday 14th December it's the Second Christmas Special for another old regular favourite -  Symptomatic Presents at The Water Rats London. Not only is Asbo Derek on board for another night of festive fun but hailing from Pompeii The Shak & Speares  and The Widows. Raffle, Sweet Treats, lots of merch and more. First prize similar to above but gnu is still tweaking the details. Even fewer tickets available as I write - http://www.wegottickets.com/event/232006  https://www.facebook.com/shakandspeares http://www.symptomaticpresents.com/
A taster of The Shak & Speares - Tangoosh from their debut album Gangster.

Time travelling now - November kicked off with Vic, Mark, Paul, Myers and Yusuf (Sect stalwart Kev couldn't make it this time) wending their way back to Hamburg for two gigs playing for Markus Wilhelms again at Astra Stube - http://www.astra-stube.de/
Shady looking bunch if you ask me!

Three Wise Monkeys Chilling At Hamburg Airport
Huge thanks to Markus and Marijana for their hospitality, almost unbelievably hassle free trip and loved Hamburg and it's people. Never had such an easy journey anywhere - parked opposite terminal at Heathrow and can't praise Lufthansa enough, they were AMAZINGLY efficient, very helpful staff, we left exactly on time and arrived early in Hamburg, the same on the return. In fact we were so early on the way back that the pilot gave us a scenic tour  circling and wing tipping to give everyone a good view, first port then starboard. (AND it was cheaper than the budget airlines!) http://www.lufthansa.com/uk/en/Homepage

We stayed 5 minutes walk from Astra Stube at the Nordic Domicil, although very low on tripadvisor ratings we all thought it was great. Slightly shabby but clean, comfy, and helpful staff, definitely stay there again.http://www.nordic-hotels.com/en/hotels/hamburg-nordic-hotel-domicl/
(One word of caution re: taxis, if you order a taxi for six to the airport through the hotel make sure the company they are using has them and make it clear that you don't want to pay for two taxis... otherwise you will end up paying for two) Lots of new friends, including DJ Martin Soulstew, spinning great soul tunes on both nights and met up again with a few who came from Blighty, Andrew Wilson who we met in Preston with his brother Rog and best friend Dave. Andrew's short film about Preston's iconic Bus garage (now saved from demolition) is available to watch on youtube:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UPVSV02Pz7c
This is an interview Vic recorded for Martin's radio show before going out to Hamburg - https://soundcloud.com/martin_at_soulstew/soulstew-asutralian-r-b-and  Below is the Gnu's slightly surreal 'Snapshot Of Hamburg' Video-

 Below is Stop That Girl, Holiday Hymn and Won't Turn Back. Vic and the Sect played blinders and everyone is looking forward to going back soon, especially now that Astra Stube has been granted a 2 year stay of execution - the local authorities are hoping to develop the area, read gentrify, and Astra Stube was due to close this year - sacrilege!http://www.astra-stube.de/                                  

All in all a very enjoyable trip with only one Blott on the Landscape ( digressing - I like Tom Sharpe's books http://www.randomhouse.co.uk/editions/blott-on-the-landscape/9780099435471 ), the Sect were infected by a touch of the liggers, flashbacks to Le Grand Mal but hopefully nipped in the bud.  

By Uli Webber
Before they were off again Vic and G paid a visit to the theatre (the gnu doesn't want you to get the wrong idea if you've read any previous blogs in 2013 and imagine that theatre and cinema  outings are de rigueur as part of the Godard social whirl, one could say more or less unknown in 30 Odd Years, it just so happens that there have been THREE this year - positively freakish) to see 'Jeeves and Wooster in Perfect Nonsense'. Vic is a big J&W fan and particularly likes the ITV series http://www.pgwodehousebooks.com/fry-laurie.htm G liked the series but not so keen on the books, so surprising that G enjoyed it immensely and had several spontaneous laugh out loud moments (fairly rare occasions) whereas Vic's appreciation was muted, his favourite bit being after the play when the three cast members danced a couple of seconds of the Charleston (Strictly fan). Not a straightforward J&W story, the premise was J&W actually doing the play themselves. Stephen Mangan plays Wooster to a T and Matthew Macfadyen and Mark Hadfield valiantly played everyone else. Mr Macfadyen is a revelation as Jeeves and several other parts, including Madeline Bassett, in one scene playing both her and Jeeves at the same time, brilliant comedic skill and  timing. Highly Recommended.http://www.jeevesandwoosterplay.com/

Hotel views Edinburgh & Glasgow. Both very quiet rooms!

On the left Vic & The Sexual Objects 'Stayin' Outta Touch' at the  CCA Glasgow 23/11/2013 
Next up live wise was the trip to Scotland for Sounds in the Suburbs Presents Vic Godard and The Sexual Objects 'What's The Matter Boy' weekend at The Voodoo Rooms Edinburgh and CCA Glasgow. Always look forward to Caledonian forays and this one didn't disappoint, despite poor Ian Holford being sick as a dog and having to do FOUR sets in two days - nothing less than heroic.
Vic and the gnu stayed at the Holiday Inn Express again in Edinburgh, the same room even, same enjoyable stay (see prev blog). In Glasgow they rang the changes and stayed at Menzies, a little more expensive than Jury's Inn or Alexander Thompson, but very comfy, clean, quiet (surprisingly, see photo above), fresh milk offered!!, 24 hour room service and smoking rooms. (Have to say Holiday Inn work harder at dealing with the stale tobacco smell). Recommend and will stay again - http://www.menzieshotels.co.uk/hotels/scotland/glasgow/
The SOBS are always a joy to watch and their fab new single Feels With Me is also one of my favourite live numbers -http://www.youtube.comwatch?v=CQmdRaLPUmk
https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/feels-with-me-single/id730923615 
     

Vic & The SOBs 'I'm Set Free' at CCA sound check.
                               
I didn't keep any videos from The Voodoo Rooms, thought I'd do lots on the Saturday at the CCA but that didn't work out either but I did film Stayin' Outta View, Felicity with James Kirk and Andy Alston on accordion coming aboard (below). Also got two corkers at the CCA sound check, I'm Set Free and She's My Best Friend, below, which didn't make it in to the set.
      
No sooner home than gearing up for the last foray north of 2013 to play for Michael Clunkie again at The Star and Shadow Newcastle with Opium Kitchen and another of my favs Pellethead. I love visits to the North East, always a great crowd and atmosphere and very friendly. Vic's performance was spell bindingly full on. http://www.starandshadow.org.uk/
The only good video I got is Music Of A Werewolf.
Lee and Tracey have many more including Pellethead and Opium Kitchen, to name but a couple. https://www.youtube.com/user/leefact25/videos
We all (no overnight interloper on this Sect stay, phew) stayed round the corner from the Star and Shadow at Premier Inn Millenium Bridge (quite a long walk from the station and not quite as straight a route as it looks on a map!). Although it's on a busy road it is set back and surprisingly quiet as I chose a room at the front with river views. Very accommodating and friendly staff, large room with seating area, clean, very comfortable, good breakfast choice and dinner OK. (I am VERY picky and have never been a breakfast person). A bit of a bargain I'd say and certainly recommend.
 http://www.premierinn.com/en/hotel/NEWMTI/newcastle-city-centre-millennium-bridge  
 30 ODD YEARS UPDATE - All been a bit frantic but nearly there. Fingers crossed masters and art work to manufacturers next week. It is sounding AMAZING thanks to Mike Coe Music Maestro Mastering. Watch out for a January 2014 release date and a party, Wahay. Download of 30 OY will come with the CDs. Time to sneak a peek at the front cover, photograph by Andréa Cerqueira and art work by the multi-talented Andrew Shaw. The rest of the art work
looks brill as well.


   A Helter Skelter of a musical ride with Vic from 1978 to 2013 demonstrating an extraordinary range of musical genres and styles and what a truly skilled, inspiring songwriter Vic is while  always staying true to the 'punk' spirit that emerged in 1976. Look out for the accompanying web page which will have info like this and more at: www.vicgodard.co.uk  
 Other News - Gigs on the horizon in 2014:
March 29th The Cross Birmingham with The June Brides
April 19th The Thunderbolt Bristol with The Blue Orchids http://www.bristolticketshop.co.uk/eventdetails.aspx?e=4668
May 3rd Riggers Stoke
May 4th The Leek Arts Festival http://leekartsfestival.co.uk/  
August Rebellion Blackpool
and many more to be announced. Lots of other info,links and more at: www.vicgodard.co.uk
STOP PRESS Last minute additional treat - Vic sang Blackpool with The Bitter Springs last night at their gig in Brentford to wish Phil and Helen Martin a fond farewell as they relocate North East. Filmed by Lee McFadden .https://www.facebook.com/TheBitterSprings?fref=ts


All for now.
     

Wednesday, 9 October 2013

Gert Gives Gnu the Blog,Hols, 90,Sorry 30 Odd Years, Filth & More

Gnu here, Gert's let me temporarily Take Over the blog while she's taking a break, so hope it doesn't Derail Your Senses or Make Me Sad and end up an Empty Shell...... but I Won't Turn Back until The Writer's Slumped.

As no recording on the horizon for 1979 Now in September and no gigs Vic and I decided to have a couple of Napper days on the South Coast. Vic suggested Camber Sands and I said Oh alright Go On Then, hoping for a Trouble free stay and that it wouldn't result in Malicious Love.



The whole area has a surreal natural/unnatural beauty made up of a Site of Special Scientific Interest which includes Dungeness, Romney Marsh and Rye Bay, Rye Harbour Nature Reserve and Rye golf course. The first golf competition took  place in 1894 and demonstrating a notably rare and early bit of feminism within the golfing fraternity the club welcomed female members right from the start.  http://www.ryegolfclub.co.uk/  , so  bird watchers, walkers, dog or other and all golfers all taken care of.
There is a really quite eerie vibe about the place (cue Music of a Werewolf) -  the tide sometimes goes out a mile, the sea is striped and there's some weird and wonderful skies, possibly the combination of topography, geography, wind farms and nuclear power stations.The fortifications at the River Rother estuary entrance (try saying that after a few) to Rye Harbour are at one end of Camber Sands, the defenses built during the Napoleonic Wars as was the Martello Tower now a kilometre inland. Dungeness Power Stations are at the other end of the very long windswept beach bounded by a mountain range of sand dunes and it is visually very striking, in a brutalist/end of the world kind of way, set on the shingle beside the sea, juxtaposed as it is with lighthouses old and new and fishing shacks, most long since turned into bijou residences, metres away and literally in it's shadow. (Derek Jarman lived in one, famous for it's garden, him being a well respected gardener as well as a film director)
       



 http://www.gardenvisit.com/garden/derek_jarman_garden_prospect_cottage_dungeness
http://www.sssi.naturalengland.org.uk/Special/sssi/unitlist.cfm?sssi_id=2000533
http://news.bbc.co.uk/local/kent/hi/people_and_places/nature/newsid_8478000/8478420.stm
Took the camcorder to get some practise in, not any actual obvious improvements in technique but in mitigation I was fighting the elements. First up is from entrance to Rye Harbour and over the golf course. Vic makes a couple of guest appearances. Can you make out what he says at the end of this one?                           
    


  Imbalance/deck of a pitching ship special effect courtesy of the wind.It was very, very windy...
 

The upside of the inclement weather- extraordinary clouds galore, this doesn't really do them justice-



We dodged some rain with a ride on the Romney, Hythe & Dymchurch Railway, mostly rattling along behind back fences, occasional glimpses of the sea. No mention of Dungeness even though  train sets off right next to the power station. Signs all over telling you what to do in the event of a nuclear accident - well that close and it's simple-hope for some Ice on the Volcano ....or die. In Hythe.I unfortunately stopped filming at the wrong moment (below) and missed That Train on the left coming back past us the other way.  http://www.rhdr.org.uk/about.html

video


http://thegallivanthotel.com/
Stayed at The Gallivant Hotel in Camber, the beach just over the road and through the famous sand dunes. The hotel started out as a motel a couple of decades ago and the L-shaped layout hasn't changed but all ghosts of any dingy/Bates Motel connotations anyone may have about motels have been well and truly exorcised. Dog/child friendly and 5 of the rooms have their own direct access. Very accommodating and friendly staff. We had large, comfy room and it was very peaceful while we were there but it was mid week, the schools had gone back and the weather had changed, could have been a Different Story, this is a very busy area generally when the sun shines. The Gallivant's Beach Bistro menu was one of the deciding factors for choosing this hotel and we weren't disappointed. Unsurprisingly fish figures prominently, the Rye Bay plaice was particularly tasty and the puddings are good too. Definitely worth a visit.  http://thebeachbistro.com/

Both Vic & I have childhood memories of the area-
3 generations of Wissies still doing days at the beach

Mine are of family days out to vast, windswept beaches, picnics in the car while outside the wind whipped up the sand . Numbers varied from seven plus dog to four plus dogs but mayhem always ensued with my mother making the usual Same Mistakes in vainly attempting to control us all with a rolled up newspaper, both it and my mother's temper shredded well before we ran out of steam.


Throughout his childhood Vic spent many an enjoyable summer holiday at Littlestone Holiday Camp with his family, given the freedom to roam at will, exploring on his bike, playing Crazy Crazy golf, Nobody's Scared for his welfare. Sadly now replaced by a fairly grim looking caravan park. Vic remarks here on one particular event-

''A memorable year was '62 when the famous double winning Spurs team* came down to play against the holidaymakers.My  dad played and managed to get his collar-bone broken in an aerial challenge.Probably that Dave Mackay -he always was a brute.So that day ended in Folkestone General.''

* For those not in to football - 'Double winning' - League and FA Cup; Spurs - Tottenham Hotspur FC. 

Vic/Sect/Sobs/ News......and 30 Odd Years 
Website news- 'Sansend' and '1978 Now' downloads went live on the website  and  T Shirts are much easier to get hold of with a buy now button, all thanks to Mr A Shaw. http://www.vicgodard.co.uk/t_shirts.html

November is going to be a bit of a frantic old month, apart from 30 Odd Years there's the two Subway Sect gigs in Hamburg on 8th/9th only a few weeks away, rehearsals under way. The great Martin Soulstew is the very special guest on both nights. https://soundcloud.com/martin_at_soulstew
Then it's Scotland!  Sounds in the Suburbs The Sexual Objects What's the Matter Boy on 22nd/23rd at the Voodoo Rooms Edinburgh and CCA Glasgow.
The next weekend 29th/30th it's 2 of the last four Subway Sect Specials 2013 at The Star and Shadow Newcastle ***UPDATE 11/10/2013-  Déjà Vu- Due to the unforeseen the Hebden Bridge gig is cancelled.then on to Hebdon Bridge Trades Club with The Hamsters and Andy T.
Last 2 are the Christmas Specials with Asbo Derek on 13th/14th December  for Spinning Chilli Presents Brighton and Symptomatic Presents London. (First delivery of sweeties arrived!)
For details and ticket info for all gigs see last blog or www.vicgodard.co.uk  or https://www.facebook.com/vic.godard.3


Vic Godard - 30 Odd Years Update: After getting the 2 CD project off the ground with a rush of enthusiasm last month and really enjoying compiling the track listing, quite a trip down memory lane (now complete, though this isn't the cover, just working copy), the full enormity of the task began to sink in and brought the mood down a tad. There was so much to do so I made a list, a boon for organisation but bad for morale- mastering; choose packaging; cover design; artwork; notes; booklet; compiling- contributors, musicians/singers; producers,engineers, recorders,audio experts; credits for  artwork, photographs,notes; distribution; promotion, etc.............

PANIC sets in-after a few days of manic activity with very little to show for it, I started unconsciously referring to it as 90 Odd Years (think Vic thought this was some veiled subconscious personal allusion). Acceptance that I did not have all the requisite skills necessary to do 300 Odd Years proud did not immediately make the situation any better so had a couple of head in sand days. Upon sticking the horns above the hedge line, it was not hunters of the lesser spotted gnu appearing over the horizon but knights in shining armour so many thanks and gratitude to Andrew, Mike, Michael and Lee (the watchful eye). I believe  this really is going to be the Best Album covering Vic's musical career fairly comprehensively, although I could easily have filled at least one other CD and what would have been ideal would be to have had a 'live' companion piece and a DVD. Maybe for 40 Odd Years.
 


1979 Now Update - I Wish there was but Back In A Void Again on that one. (Not as doom laden as that, Vic should be back in the studio very soon)

 Obscure Vic Facts - No 1
What is Vic's connection with Brian Davison?  Answers to https://www.facebook.com/vic.godard.3  Small gnu gift to first person to get it.

Looks like 2014 is going to be a busy one both releases and gig wise, not usually sorting  dates this early except for the odd one here and there and already got some Subway Sect ones booked and quite a few enquiries. I think it's karmic - Vic was hoping to play some of the places he hasn't visited in a while or not at all and hey presto it seems to be happening. He's been going on about a gig in Stoke and it now looks on the cards. (Personally think Homes Under The Hammer has been having a subliminal effect, so Derby could be next)

Blackpool August- Well, had to, gnu inc are doing a 7" of Blackpool next year and if the Sect are in similar company to this year's Bizarre Bazaar stage should be a goodie. http://www.rebellionfestivals.com/
Blackpool video courtesy of Andrew Paul Shaw.

And this one below is Vic and Subway Sect at Rebellion 2008 -
video
                                                                               
                                                                           
Plans afoot for Birmingham (October); Leek Staffs, Stoke (May) Norwich (summer) and many more.

Fantasy Gnu Fest 2014 -
I've been day dreaming about a Gnu Fest to complement 30 Odd Years, one of those 'if money were no object' things. It would be an all-dayer not just music but art/literature/comedy and with everyone having a Vic link. I'd have two stages, one for poets, writers, comedy, acoustic and jazz and the other for everyone else. (It would also have proper loos, proper paths and a giant retractable roof- well, it is a fantasy) My current line up is, in no particular order:

Stage 1
Vic Godard Subway Sect Sexual Objects Bitter Springs Mates Mates Kill Pretty Shock and Awe Long Decline Asbo Derek Pellethead  ATV Monochrome Set Television (and New York Dolls, if they still had Johnny Thunders) The Fall (how did they get in...Vic you been at my blog?) Vgn Dentata Organ Post Opium Kitchen The Black Arabs
Acoustic/Jazz/Poets/Raconteurs Stage
Edwyn Collins Sexual Objects Vic & The Jazz Independents Pete Saunders Subway Sect 1981
Jock Scot Richard Hell John Cooper Clarke Kevin Pearce (Vic wanted Bruce Forsyth but I told him this was my line up and to do his own)

                                                     
                                                             

Video 'Parallel Lines' with brilliant Jock Scot intro (not just saying that because he gives L& R Vol 2 a plug), collaboratively filmed by Tracey Holloway and Lee McFadden.  

Incidentally- 

We haven't been to the flics as a couple for aeons ( we both agree it was 'American Werewolf In London' in Manchester late 1981) so it was a real treat that for our re-introduction to the delights of the silver screen we were invited to the full on London premiere- blue red carpet, paparazzi, some unidentifiable sparkly clad faux celebs, flashing bulbs, the whole caboodle (ooh er get her) of 'Filth', the latest of Irvine Welsh's books to be brought to the screen, with a plethora of talent making this an ensemble piece. I've read the book and couldn't imagine how  it could be adapted for the screen, also fairly sure I wouldn't want to put myself through watching it if it was, so Respect to Jon S. Baird for direction and a screenplay that captures and delivers the essence of the full on visceral mental disintegration of Irvine's book and stands as it's own entity. Apart from the mesmerising performance by James McAvoy, Shirley Henderson and Eddie Marsan stood out for me, the only obviously sympathetic characters. There's a brilliant Mr Marsan moment where the audience involuntarily goes from gagging to laughing out loud in the same breath. I wonder how many takes it took? Any way one of the funniest moments of the film and there are quite a few, mostly on the darker side of humour. I really enjoyed it and Vic surprised himself by liking it a lot too. http://www.filthmovie.co.uk/
PS My one quibble is Mr McAvoy's prolific pearlies- far too pristine.  
                         
                         Stripes Brentford with the Bitter Springs - this is the record over the live.                                                                       



Seems fitting to end on the news that YHO #50 is the very last FINAL issue of Your Heart Out from Kevin Pearce
''The fiftieth and final issue of YHO is about listening.  It is illustrated using examples of records which have become life-supports between and during YHO explorations.  These might include ones by Pinch, Pursuit Grooves, Photek, Cyrus, Sherwood, Shackleton and Smith & Mighty, but that’s not really the point.''
As always FREE to download for ALL- http://yrheartout.blogspot.co.uk/2013/10/yho50.html   (We'll always have the archive)

                               


                          Hope I haven't left you with any long term side effects- Gnu out. 




  




Thursday, 29 August 2013

Hola i Benvinguda (Or 'Just call me Gert B. de Mille')



http://catalonia.ca/

http://www.heliogabal.com
 It seems an age since the 'Mates Mates' visit to Catalunya  for  Festigàbal  part of La Festa Major de Gràcia, ' the biggest street party in Barcelona', but it was only a week ago.A very enjoyable few days in Vic and Barcelona but then it's a great area to be (and they don't do bull fighting) - http://www.cataloniatravelguide.com/2013/03/04/vic/  If you could cross Barcelona and Glasgow you'd have the perfect City in my opinion.

 However the the trip did not get off to a good start- 4 hour flight delay at Gatwick plus the 'got to be at the airport two and a half hours before flight' courtesy of norwegian.com, won't be recommending their management skills, no customer service representation at all and didn't answer the phone - you can  imagine what I actually think but am far too polite to say and don't like resorting to profanities. Of course no mention of delay until after we'd gone air-side, then every half hour as it approached 'Go To Gate' time the expected departure slipped back half an hour, seriously mind numbing. Will recommend Vueling though, pronounced Wueling, who we flew with on the way home.
Vic, Jordi Valls & Ben the Shape
 (It was also a déjà vu moment-  on another trip to Catalunya in 2010, for Jordi Valls' London Punk Tapes Exhibition in Barcelona Vic & the gnu had a NINE hour wait at Gatwick.  The saving grace was meeting and travelling with Seymour Bybuss of The Shapes, his entertaining and erudite conversation helped the time pass fairly painlessly (that and his vapour fags)  http://hyped2death.com/shapes/index.html

You can have a look at the accompanying book to The London Punk Tapes by Jordi and then buy it! : http://issuu.com/actar/docs/londonpunktapes  
http://www.actar.com/index.php?qid=2& idllibre=4831&lang=en



Vic & Mates Mates by Lluis Huedo
I digress, Sergi ( famèlic ) collected us from Barcelona and finally arrived in Vic about 7pm, settled in  to our digs for the next 2 nights (thanks to Ferran and his parents for their hospitality) and then Vic was straight off to Ramon's farmhouse in the Vic countryside to rehearse with Mates Mates - from left-  Ferran ( Prudenci Rostoll) on guitar and vocals, Luc Ma (Luca)on vocals and acoustic guitar,  Jòrbel Errapicas (Erra) on drums, Andrew Ribas Escandon (Andriu) on bass,  and Pau Orri Comerma (Pau) on trombone (hadn't arrived in time for photograph). Lluis Huedo was doing some more filming for his documentary 'Vic to Vic'. Lluis'  Les Parts Del Cos video ( http://vimeo.com/57210108 ) in previous blog  is part of it. Gert's had a sneak preview of the main work in progress and it's brilliant, humorous and a real insight in to how Vic ticks, or as close as anyone's likely to get. https://www.facebook.com/pages/MATES-MATES/199378890103020?fref=ts

 This is also when and where Gert's new toy makes it's debut, you may well be sick of it by the end of this blog. Wanted to get a camcorder for a while - it will open up a world of opportunities for secret squirrel to capture those unguarded moments 'on the road', amongst other things! Technique needs a bit of work to say the least and I rather unfortunately lost the instruction booklet on way to Catalunya ( had them on CD-R at home ) so was limited to film, zoom in/out and volume and a lot of too fast panning and handshake, don't think Lee and Tracey have much to worry about! So, here we go my first ever video at Ramon's Farmhouse in Vic  The rehearsal room (farm outbuilding) was incredibly hot and sweaty and so Gert decided to brave the mozzies and gnats ( and yes did get bitten to pieces by some vicious little beasts) and sit outside in the gathering gloam with Vic and Mates Mates belting out 'Take Over' from inside. It's psychedelic man.
 
Back inside and this one is Mates Mates rehearsing their song Residencia, the one used for the Marc Riley jingle- you can sing along- duh duh duh duh duh duh duh MARC RILEY and then just keep repeating. (Andriu is hidden behind the pillar)
     video
 After a couple of days rehearsal and the added bonus of Vic and Mates Mates writing another new song called....'New One' ( yes, I have the videos but you may be pleased to hear they need some editing and haven't got that far yet), Vic and the gnu took a very picturesque train ride in to Barcelona.
http://www.hotelsilver.com/en_index.html

Made the right choice with the Aparthotel Silver. Highly recommended,  situated in Gràcia, central and convenient for Festigàbal, very friendly and helpful staff, good breakfast selection, clean, very reasonable and a lovely room,  which leads nicely in to Gert's next production ' Room With A View'   (sorry E.M. Forster, and to add insult to injury I prefer 'Enchanted April' by Elizabeth Von Arnim ).  Not sure where the 'voice' came from, but fairly sure it's not mine or the gnu's, hints of Mike Leigh's 'Abigail'.
video 

                                                                            
Going in sequence with the video delights this next is from the sound check. No real crowd yet meant I could stand in front and get everyone in the frame. 'Whip Rules' from the  famèlic Vic and Mates Mates 7", first time it's been played live. A few copies available from Vic at gigs and mail order from famèlic.
And limiting it this blog to one more video, don't want to over do it, so the opportunity to compare and contrast with the 'outdoor' rehearsal version above, this is 'Take Over' live at Festigàbal 2013 La Festa Major de Gràcia. Go next year, or any year, if you can, it really is a spectacle, set over 3 days with an eclectic mix of music and each street competing for best decorations and IT'S FREE. I GRATIS. http://www.festamajordegracia.cat/  
                                           
                                                                                       (Look out for Vic giving Luca a hard time!)

      
Thank you Mates Mates, Ramon and Bill, Sergi and everyone at famèlic and everyone at  HELIOGÀBAL  for the invitation to Festigàbal 2013 and thanks for the very warm Catalan welcome. Looking forward to coming back for more of the same.Tweet @elsmatesmates 
https://www.facebook.com/pages/MATES-MATES/199378890103020?fref=ts
OTHER THINGS-

' Born to be a Rebel' had it's live debut on the Subway Sect Marc Riley session on 22 July, listen here to whole session- http://www.vicgodard.co.uk/marc_riley_session_270713/Marc_Riley_Session_220713.html

On the 1979 Now front there's been a bit of a lull, Vic's hoping to re-start recording when everyone's back from their hols. (Update 13 Sep- back in studio at the end of the month)

    Rehearsals starting soon for the next two Subway Sect gigs for Aufgeladen und Bereit at   Astra Stube on November 8/9th with very Special Guest Martin Soulstew.
 https://soundcloud.com/martin_at_soulstew
https://www.facebook.com/events/576141865777379/
http://www.astra-stube.de/tickets.php


November 22nd  Voodoo Rooms Edinburgh 
https://www.facebook.com/events/207657426025183/

November 23rd CCA Glasgow
https://www.facebook.com/events/642183305810276/
https://www.facebook.com/soundsin.thesuburbs?fref=ts


   After much discussion and rumination 30 Odd Years is going to be the next gnu inc offering  tentatively planning for a release in December. So L&R Vol 3 will have to wait and decided to leave re-releasing What's the Matter Boy until after the Sounds in the Suburbs Presents Vic and the Sexual Objects performing 'What's the Matter Boy' gigs in November. Then can include live versions by the SOBS, the original LP tracks and downloads all together.

Vic and the gnu started compiling a track list for 30 Odd Years and have now decided on what looks like the final track listing, including as many of the requests as possible-
 


Vic did a great interview with Jaime Havlin for Positive Noises in this free to download e book-  https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/342659

Forgot about this from 1982 from SFX music-If you ever wanted to know how to make burgers Vic's your man!
http://www.vicgodard.co.uk/audio.html

The Whaligoe Steps- a very evocative piece by Douglas MacIntyre in 'Caught by the River'- http://www.caughtbytheriver.net/2013/08/the-whaligoe-steps-edwyn-collins/

Probably the best live review the Sect have had- from 229 The Venue March 2012 by John Robb - http://louderthanwar.com/subway-sect-live-review/

If you want an insight into Catalonia under Franco 'Franco's Prisoner' by Miguel Garcia is the one to go for: http://www.christiebooks.com/ChristieBooksWP/?s=Franco%27s+prisoner&searchsubmit=

Vic put me on to 'Intodown', have a listen and see what you think, free download available-
http://intodown.com/Home/tabid/36/Default.aspx
and The Olive Shoots- https://soundcloud.com/theoliveshoots/sets/ep-2013-clips-coming-september

And it's still summer , hard to believe here in Blighty- Mirabilis Jalapa or the four o'clock flower in full bloom, behind that a Callistemon or Bottle Brush and next to that Nicotiana.
And finally don't forget tickets on sale for three of Subway Sect's 4 Christmas Specials-


Star And Shadow Cinema

Clunk Click Presents VIC GODARD & SUBWAY SECT + SPECIAL GUESTS TBC
NEWCASTLE: Star And Shadow Cinema
FRI 29TH NOV, 2013 8PM http://www.wegottickets.com/event/228492

The Green Door StoreSpinning Chilli Presents VIC GODARD & SUBWAY SECT (6 piece) AND ASBO DEREK CHRISTMAS SPECIAL BRIGHTON: The Green Door Store
FRI 13TH DEC, 2013 7.30pm http://www.wegottickets.com/event/234123
 
6 Piece Sect at Green Door Store 05/04/2013 Courtesy of Phil and Shelley at Spinning Chilli 

The Water Rats Theatre Bar

Symptomatic Presents VIC GODARD & SUBWAY SECT (6 piece) + ASBO DEREK
LONDON: The Water Rats
SAT 14TH DEC, 2013 7:00pm http://www.wegottickets.com/event/232006

Poster by Andrew P Shaw



AND tickets available soon for VIC GODARD AND SUBWAY SECT + THE HAMSTERS + THE ANDY T GROUP
HEBDON BRIDGE TRADES CLUB SAT 30TH NOV http://thetradesclub.com/




 


Last one- 'Blackpool' Catalan style at the sound check Barcelona-







Tuesday, 16 July 2013

Gert's Bloggin' in the Sun!

'Gert of the Blog'
                 
  It feels a bit surreal blogging OUTDOORS, IN THE UK! It seems eons since we got the opportunity to bask and broil in the sun for longer than a nano-second, and so rare an occurrence that I can't quite believe it,  actually feeling the need for sun protection factor 50- what's going on?? In fact it seems so incredulous that I think perhaps I've been transported by the Starship Enterprise to a distant tropical dream land where the Bong-trees grow. ( It all occurred too quickly for a leisurely trip by pea green boat with Edward Lear's endearing friends -
http://www.englishverse.com/poems/the_owl_and_the_pussycat
   The gentle  thrum of insects fills the air and although no ring-nosed pigs the fruit trees are thronged with flocks of sqawking rose-ringed/  Indian ring necked Parakeets, and summer seems eternal (ok a bit over the top but understandable after a year and a half of autumn/winter gloom,  interspersed with only the briefest, tantalising  spells of anything vaguely hinting that we (in the UK) might, one day, again experience an actual, entire, summer 'season'.Anyway Gert's going to ignore the Eeyores who can't cope with the cold and can't cope with the heat (in any other temperate country this 'heatwave' would just be called summer) and get out there and make the most of it - the only thing missing is the sound of waves gently breaking on the shore-http://sounds.bl.uk/Environment/Water/022M-WA09020XXXXX-0380V0  (Isn't the British Library brilliant?)                                                                                                                               
Stop Press: "Bees and Wasps Still Exist in Suburbia"
Lavatera in Full Bloom + Deadly Laburnum/Golden Chain
or according to Vic the 'Singing Ringing Tree'.  ( Probably one of the scariest children's fairy tales to be televised- http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio4/arts/singing_ringing_tree.shtml  
 
And yes, Gert's a bit of a Trekkie, favourite series is Voyager being a big Captain Janeway fan, about time they had a female running a star ship and she did an exemplary job of getting everyone back to the Alpha Quadrant. Never been keen on Deep Space Nine, seemed too much like Babylon 5 and wasn't keen on that either, even with Will Robinson. Lost in Space is another one of my all time fav tv sci fi series and probably only surpassed by The Time Tunnel and Land of the Giants.Also an Agatha Christie fan, particularly M. Poirot and Mr Parker Pyne. (This person is a truly dedicated fan: www.davros.org/misc/agatha.html
              

It seems ages ago now but it has been only just over 3 weeks since Vic and the Gnu took the west road to Scotland for the second of three trips on the agenda this year. (Next is singing with the SOBs in November)       
As luck would have it the two days of fair weather were on the way up on the train... and on the way home on the train along the wonderfully scenic east coast line.(sitting landward this time).
First stop Glasgow - Vic was invited by the Glasgow Jazz Festival and the Creeping Bent Organisation to open for The Jazzateers who were performing their acclaimed 1983 debut LP “Rough 46” live for the first time and celebrating it's beautifully packaged re-release on Creeping Bent. http://www.scotsman.com/lifestyle/music/news-and-features/gig-review-the-jazzateers- vic-godard-glasgow-1-2982505
http://www.jazzfest.co.uk/programme/jazzateers/      https://www.facebook.com/bentpage?fref=ts                                                                                           
Vic gave the vocal chords a good airing in a set comprised of old standards, some VU songs, Holiday Hymn and  Felicity. accompanied by some very talented musicians - Douglas MacIntyre (Sexual Objects, etc), Andy Alston, Campbell Owens and Mick Slaven (all  Independent Group alumni) AND the added treat of James Kirk appearing as if out of no where at the side of the stage to join in on HH and Felicity. 

A most enjoyable time was had by all. Plans afoot to reprise the jazz set for a London gig- Watch This Space (rather the next blog or Vic's fb https://www.facebook.com/vic.godard.3?ref=tn_tnmn or website http://www.vicgodard.co.uk/vic_godard_live.html
Stayed at Alexander  Thomson again (see previous blog for more). Not quite as nice a room as last time in April but still ok if a bit on the small side. However the loo was just plainly not thought out - on a really quite high, very narrow platform. I'm 5ft 6in and had to sort of spring-board on,   legs left dangling and then sort of lurch (or fall) off, was trying to think what it reminded me of       and then it came to me- the childlhood insecurity when you first start using the grown up's loo and it all feels a bit precarious. 

Sorry for going from loos to food- dinner on one night at TGI Fridays-hmmm- not like the US ones. Food ok but disappointed in service bearing in mind the number of staff on duty,several echelons in fact not doing much from bus persons, new waiting staff, established waiters/tresses, table supervisors, shift leaders, seaters and greeters and still dirty tables left uncleared and empty plates left in front of people.(Gert waitressed her way through college so notices these things) And the music is very loud, unfortunate if not to your taste.

Raining again on the way to Edinburgh on the 28th, Vic was finally doing a Neu! Reekie! night at Summerhall,  the former Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies in Edinburgh - An amazing amazing warren of a building which is now devoted to artistic creativity, with studio and workshop spaces.                                                                                                                    
http://www.summerhall.co.uk/

On the bill at Neu! Reekie! A SUMMER STORM- 
 The uniquely talented Momus, Vic and Douglas MacIntyre (successfully winging it with Vic doing a solo performance of Lush Life interspersed with stand up for the encore) and a celebration of Sandie Craigie, with readings from Kevin Cadwallander, Jenny Lindsay and Colin McGuire.
http://neureekie.tumblr.com/
http://imomus.com/
http://www.summerhall.co.uk/2013/neu-reekie-35/
https://www.facebook.com/neureekie?fref=ts
Vic and the gnu also discovered a rather nice restaurant called Hewat's, literally a hundred yards or so up the road on the left. Gnu had carpaccio of tuna followed by sea bass with a garlic 'nage' (broth to you and me) and a caramelised lemon tart for pud, Vic had haggis risotto followed by wild boar. Very reasonable for the quality of food, service and ambience,and will definitely go again. http://www.hewatsrestaurant.co.uk/index.html


Stayed at the Holiday Inn Express Picardy Place and highly recommend. Very helpful staff, clean, comfy, spacious (smoking rooms), and Gert's room was INCREDIBLY quiet. Some great views. Already booked for next trip. http://www.ihg.com/holidayinnexpress/hotels/gb/en/edinburgh/edbpp/hoteldetail?destination=EDINBURGH%2CUnited+Kingdom&sitrackingid=495212570&radius=20&inMiles=true&siclientid=1936&
A medley of Vic and Douglas at Neu! Reekie from Summerhall tv including snatches of Felicity,Holiday Hymn and VU songs. 

 
  1979 NOW Update- yes, there is one! THREE more backing tracks in the bag- Born to Be A Rebel with Myers on bass and Liam from the Bullies on drums, You Made Me with Yusuf on bass and Liam on drums and Nameitwhatyoulike with Myers on bass and Mark on drums. Yes, it is confusing but only 2 more backing tracks to go. (PS only a very few copies of Caught in Midstream 7" left, available from Aed Records:  
                                                                          
 http://www.aedrecords.com/collections/vinyl/products/aed0015-vic-godard-subway-sect-caught-in-midstream-you-bring-out-the-demon-in-me                                                                         
Don't forget Vic and Subway Sect, with Kevin Younger on keys/guitar, Mark Braby on guitar, Paul Myers on bass, Paul Cook on drums and Yusuf B'Layachi on backing vocals/tambourine, are back doing another Marc Riley session on Monday 22nd July. Performing 5 numbers in total- Happy-Go-Lucky Girl  Won't Turn Back  Born To Be A Rebel  The Water Was Bad and Stop That Girl 7-9pm GMT (+1) -  http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b03773m5 
                                                                                                                        
  And then it's off to Catalonia next month for a couple of days in Vic for Vic to rehearse for  Festigàbal at Heliogàbal Barcelona, part of the well known,much larger Festa Major de Gràcia-
 http://www.festamajordegracia.cat/event/2013/08/16/month/all/all/1
 famèlic  invited Vic over to sing with Mates Mates, so finally a chance to do the songs from the single released in Feb this year on Famèlic Records  -  Les Parts Del Cos (Castaslasnas), (Oh Alright) Go On Then and Whip Rules. (Copies available at the gig in Barcelona and from http://famelic.bandcamp.com/merch/vic-godard-mates-mates-vic-to-vic ) Vic's still working on the rest of the set list with Mates Mates
https://www.facebook.com/events/209194432570853/    and here's a reminder of Castaslasnas -
video

 COMING SOON: 'Close' is a short film commissioned by Film London, written and directed by Geoffrey Taylor and a little bird ( a smallish gnu actually) has told me that two songs from 'Whats the Matter Boy' are rumoured to be part of the sound track- Empty Shell and Birth and Death). Please 'Like' their page if you want to follow the progress up to screening the final film at festivals. Here:  https://www.facebook.com/closefilm
SYNOPSIS:    Charlie lives with his distant figure of a father. On the week of Charlie’s 12th birthday he discovers his father dead in his bed. Charlie keeps the body a secret; in this time he discovers his father’s vibrant past; hidden memories that have been forgotten and through this quiet intimate time he spends with the body, Charlie begins to feel closer to his father than ever before.

COMING SOON 2 - AND talking of What's the Matter Boy -  Andrew Shaw, Vic's website guru has been tirelessly working on a page for the site that will allow Gnu Inc to release WTMB as downloads, for the first time and exclusively from Vic's website http://www.vicgodard.co.uk/
This will work slightly differently to other download purchases as it's coming direct from Vic or the gnu and so response times will vary (eg they're on GMT time, asleep, at gigs, etc)  

And following on from that I heard that Vic and the gnu were musing on what to have on Gnu Inc's next release- Live and Rare Vol 3 and are thinking they could re-release the whole of WTMB PLUS the best live versions they have of  the songs AS WELL. Please let Vic know your thoughts on his facebook https:/www.facebook.com/vicgodard or leave comments here.

If you haven't seen this film about Simon Rivers and The Bitter Springs you're missing a treat- Cozzy Guts, a Stan Watson film is 17 mins of doc Rock-U-Drama, inimitably Bitter Springs style with Simon Rivers' taking us on a wryly humorous tour  of all things Springs.

http://thebittersprings.bandzoogle.com/welcome.cfm    

YOUR HEART OUT- Always a good read and it's FREE to Download for ALL- The forty-seventh edition of Your Heart Out is an investigation in to the music of Ultramarine but 'nothing is ever that simple' - http://yrheartout.blogspot.co.uk/ 

If you can try and catch a performance of Clive Barker's Sex,Drugs and Music-Hall-
http://www.theargus.co.uk/leisure/stage/10500917.Punk_musician_turned_writer_Clive_Parker_brings_his_debut_theatre_show_to_Brighton/ 

                                                             
   HEROINES ALL HEROINES ALL.