The below are the bands I've listend to most in February on iTunes or my iPod. Inspiration, downtime, or just to keep me company whilst I work. This list made up a large part of my soundtrack over the last 28 days...
February also saw five new entries, and a host of re-entries, into the list. The highest new entry is Cabaret Voltaire at #7 which is down to me discovering that a number of their back catalog had been reissued on CD for the first time in probably 20 years. I had a bunch of old vinyl LPs from them which I used to listen to a lot but finding reasonably priced second hand CDs of their past albums was a nightmare so the reissue was a dream come true.
I was surprised The Herbaliser (NE #33) hadn't appeared on my lists before as I listen to them quite a bit - but I guess never enough times each month to have 'charted' before. I even use a take on the opening track on their 'Very Mercenary" album as my intro on my 'About' sections on Facebook and Live Journal. Other new entries this month were Ashbury Heights, Ghostland and Avicii.
Here is February's Top 50 taken from my playlist:
Top 50 Bands – February 2014
Position / Last Month / Band
1 / 3 Enigma
2 / 6 The Mission
3 / 4 The Sisters of Mercy
4 / 1 New Model Army
5 / 5 Conjure One
6 / 18 In Strict Confidence
7 / NE Cabaret Voltaire
8 / 27 Lorde
9 / RE Linkin Park
10 / 7 Ghost Dance
11 / 8 Fields of the Nephilim
12 / 14 Daft Punk
13 / 10 Dead Can Dance
14 / 13 Mind.In.A.Box
15 / 22 THYX
16 / 36 Liquid Divine
17 / RE :Wumpscut:
18 / 24 Lana Del Rey
19 / 19 Portishead
20 / 9 Nine Inch Nails
21 / 20 Clannad
22 / 21 Fischerspooner
23 / RE Delerium
24 / RE Tori Amos
25 / 23 Iron Maiden
26 / 28 Front 242
27 / 25 Justin Sullivan
28 / 26 Metallica
29 / 29 Jeremy Soule – Skyrim OST
30 / 31 Garbage
31 / 32 Levellers
32 / 33 Gary Numan
33 / NE The Herbaliser
34 / RE Snow Patrol
35 / NE Ashbury Heights
36 / 34 MS MR
37 / 35 U2
38 / RE Magnum
39 / 39 All About Eve
40 / 38 Covenant
41 / NE Ghostland
42 / 41 Juno Reactor
43 / RE My Life With The Thrill Kill Kult
44 / 44 Star Industry
45 / 47 Sleepthief
46 / NE Avicii
47 / 45 Chvrches
48 / RE Blank & Jones
49 / RE Tool
50 / RE Sohodolls
- Current Music:The Damned
I usually post this at the beginning of January, but it’s not unusual to be a few days late due to me not usually being at home on the 1st.
This covers 2013 – but has been streamlined to only include cinema trips and gigs. I saw a lot less bands in 2013 than in 2012 (largely down to going to Reading Festival in 2012 ;p) but hope to do more in the coming year.
Top 20 Films of 2013
20. Enders Game
18. Kick-Ass 2
17. Despicable Me 2
16. The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey
15. Pacific Rim
14. Iron Man 3
13. Anchorman 2
12. Mortal Instruments: City of Bones
10. Thor 2
9. We’re the Millers
8. Machete Kills
6. Man of Steel
5. Star Trek: Into Darkness
4. World War Z
3. Saving Mr. Banks
2. Hunger Games: Catching Fire
2013 saw a jump in the number of films I saw at the cinema from 2012. I managed to make it out to the silver screen 33 times, up from a lowly 25 in 2012, but still well down from the 45 trips in 2011, 49 in 2010, and 42 in 2009. Will I get back up to the 40’s in 2014? Who knows…
I didn’t see as many bands in 2013 but I did enjoy most of those I did manage to catch. Looking forward to 2014 as I should be seeing a lot more live music (I already have several gigs booked…) but here’s my Top 5 live bands of 2013…
Top 5 Live Bands of 2013
5. The Naked & Famous
4. 1000 Planets
3. The Mission
2. Fields of the Nephilim
1. Roger Waters “The Wall”
Anyway, that's it from 2013.
You can find my previous ‘Best of’s…” via the following links:
2012 Top XX - http://angusabranson.livejournal.com/102
2011 Top XX - http://angusabranson.livejournal.com/102
2010 Top XX - http://angusabranson.livejournal.com/985
2009 Top 10 – http://angusabranson.livejournal.com/975501.html
2008 Top 10 - http://angusabranson.livejournal.com/924
2007 Top 15 - http://angusabranson.livejournal.com/804
2006 Top 15 - http://angusabranson.livejournal.com/665
2005 Top 15 - http://angusabranson.livejournal.com/447
2004 Top 10 - http://angusabranson.livejournal.com/186
This was an interesting gig on a number of levels.
For starters it was the first time I saw Incubus Succubus or Vendemmian live. I got to know both bands reasonably well over the ensuing years and still know members from both today.
I knew Incubus Succubus (before they replaced the c's with the k's) because one of my friends (Mal) used to play in a band called The Screaming Dead back in the 80's with Tony (who was central to Incubus Succubus with his wife, Candia) and Mal had played me some of their music and I joined him for the gig. Vendemmian was a band I'd heard a reasonable amount about as two of the members had been part of Restoration - another London goth band I had an EP of (and whose other members I'd later get to know through other bands and the club scene).
But this was my first experience of both.
It amused me that at one point someone from Vendemmian (I think it was Dave) mistook me from someone in Incubus Succubus. Well, it was the Inkies first ever London gig and no one really knew them at the time - so an easy mistake back then.
I can't remember Junk at all - they were apparently pretty good but as the other two bands rose to prominence in the scene (Incubus Succubus actually went on to perform live on TV a few years later) Junk must have splintered or atleast never really cracked the surface properly.
Incubus Succubus were absolutely fantastic - and I certainly am not surprised that they grew to be one of the biggest bands on the goth/pagan circuit who still command a good following and audiences at their shows even today.
Vendemmian were enjoyable but didn't blow me away. I ended up seeing them quite a few times (including a few months after this one) and they were much better on those occasions. But then they might have been outshone on this occasion by being supported by Incubus Succubus (who went on to headline in London after this).
All in all a great night out though, and very memorable.
We all went straight from this to Camden Palace to see Daisy Chainsaw - but that's GIG 115 and I'll write about that in a few days :)
Unfortunately I have no recollection as to any of the bands on this evening. I know that I was at the gig with John and Sarah, but that's it. Black Maria were (according to my notes) pretty good whilst their two support bands for the evening were both 'alright'. But that's about it.
There have been other bands more recently called Black Maria (I found two when I did a search to see my memory could be jogged) but both of those were bands that started in the 2000's so aren't these guys. As such, I continue to have no recollection of them or the night. Sorry!
Now this was something different. A band that people had actually heard of playing Barnet's Monday night student/alternative night at The Dandy Lion. R.D.F. was/are a band who came out of the crustie/free festival scene that played with ska, dub and punk. They'd gotten some coverage in the music press and the occasional tune showed up every so often in the indie clubs back in the early/mid 90's.
I've no idea how they ended up playing at The Dandy Lion on a Monday night, and to be fair we'd probably have been there anyway but having them was an added draw.
However, I think I wasn't really in the mood for their blend of music at that point - or the Dandy Lions sound system and ambiance just didn't suit them. Whatever the reason I was disappointed with them - which I'm pretty sure was a one-off as I thin in the right atmosphere - especially in a field somewhere in the summer - they'd be ace to see live.
They're still going so who knows, I may get the chance one day :)
GIG 110: Moon - The Dandy Lion 11/01/93
GIG 111: Demi-Gods - The Dandy Lion 08/02/93
I'm wrapping up the next three gigs I went to in to a single entry here. Mainly because they were all small 'student/alternative' Monday night gigs at The Dandy Lion in Barnet. As mentioned a few times, the bands the played the Dandy Lion were generally local bands and often not all that great. There were some exceptions, but they were certainly few and far between.
The main reason we headed over to Barnet was to see friends, have a few drinks, and dance away as the 'club' night either side of the band was good fun and had some excellent music.
Over the above three nights we saw Suspiria (not the goth band of the same name that appeared a few years later), Moon, and Demi-Gods. The first two were fairly dull whilst Demi-Gods were good fun and comprised of a few people we knew (who had been in some other local bands - I think formerly Bogus Gods).
The December gig (Suspiria) was great fun as it was the first night out after Christmas and we had a load of people join us - including Martin & Michelle from Brighton, Yvonne, Dawn, Michael, Helen, Sunil, Liz, Sarah amongst many others. Everyone had obviously had enough of the 'quiet' Christmas break and wanted to get out and let their hair down :)
To be honest, I have no idea how we ended up at this gig. I'm pretty sure it was one of those last minute "hey Angus, we have some spare tickets for a gig tonight, wanna come?" moments.
All I know is that I ended up having a really hectic and long day. It was Saturday and I was working but managed to somehow bribe my way into being able to leave two hours early so I could meet up with Dawn, Paul and Mark and drive from London to Birmingham to see The Levellers.
Moonflowers, the support act, were a Bristol based indie-jazz-funk band. Now I'll be one of the first people to say I'm not generally a fan of the "jazz-funk" sound and have unfortunately seen a few dire bands in that genre back in the 90's - but for whatever reason my 20-year-old self seems to have liked Moonflowers looking at the diary entry for this gig. I can only imagine they put on a good show and had a good mix of tracks because the one song of their's I just played on Youtube to see who they were sounded appalling!
This was surprisingly only the third time I'd seen The Levellers (I saw them in 1991, 1992 and now in 1993!) but they had jumped venue size on every occasion. The NEC was massive and, apart from when I would see them at festivals, was the largest venue I'd see them in. To be honest I prefer seeing them in smaller venues or at outdoor festivals anyway as I find very few 'arena' gigs have the atmosphere and certainly nowhere near the same intimacy as even venues such as Brixton Academy.
The Levellers pulled it off though (no surprise really as they are one of the bets live acts out there - still are and always were!) and gave us a fantastic evening!
We then had to head back to London where I was supposed to be at a friends party that evening. I eventually got there just after 1am but as the party didn't wrap until after 6am I didn't miss anything ;)
I'm afraid to say I don't recall TG5 at all and the diary entry for them is rather 'blah'. They weren't very good but then The Dandy Lion Alternative Nights were more about the friends and 'club night' aspect than the live bands so no real surprise there.
I loved The Marquee on Charing Cross Road. Sure, you're shoes would stick to the floor in front of the stage if you stayed still longer than a couple of seconds and they served sometimes not-so-cold beer or cider in plastic pints, but it was a fantastic little venue and one that I spent a good chunk of my early gigging years revisiting. It was a very sad day, many years later, when The Marquee closed down and got turned into a sanitized Weatherspoons pub - but hey, that's the future from this gig's perspective and for now it was still a fantastic venue that put on some great (and not so great) bands.
On this Sunday evening we had not one, but two of the greats - and for me a double bill of Creaming Jesus *and* Sunshot was too good to pass up!
The opening band, Homage Freaks, weren't great but I really didn't care to be honest as the combo I had ahead were two of my favourite live acts of the time.
I'd seen Sunshot a couple of times before (headlining at The Dome <GIG077> and as the opening act for New Model Army at Brixton Academy <GIG094> and they were, as usual, full of raw energy and live chaos. This was my fifth Creaming Jesus gig, and the first time I'd seen them since July the previous year so I was well up for an evening of bruises and dancing until I dropped - and they didn't disappoint.
It was another Monday night 'Student/Alernative' night in Barnet. The band, Fluff on this occasion, were entirely forgettable but the club night and company were fun. I know Nick, Dawn, Christine, Julie and a double dose of Liz's were all there that night.