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Blog: Back On The Road Again

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After spending most of the year doing the occasional gig and otherwise relaxing around the house I was very much back back BACK on the road again this weekend, with a LOT of travel and a LOT of ROCK. It all kicked off on Friday afternoon with me getting the train up to Leicester, where i checked in to my HOTEL (i am SO posh) and then wandered over to the DMU students union. I expected it to be a bit WEIRD, as this was my ALMA MATER (it was Leicester Poly when I was there) but i was UNPREPARED for how EMOTIONAL i got when I arrived. Even though it's a totally different building to the Student Union we had IN MY DAY (that one got knocked down, like pretty much EVERYWHERE that I've ever drank in in Leicester) i still found myself getting VERY NOSTALGIC. "Pint of wine, Chips and Cheese" I said to Tom when he arrived, as i was MID REMINISCENCE for our traditional Friday Night Ritual at the Indie Disco.

Tom had been delayed a little, as he couldn't find anywhere to park, and we were both shocked to discover that, these days, students have CARS! CARS i tell you - IN MY DAY we were lucky to have SHOES! Well, maybe not THAT much, but goodness me there seems to be a lot more AFFLUENCE around with students than back then, although I am prepared to accept that it may just be because they are all up to their EYEBALLS in DEBT. We went in and found that not only are The Kids Today MASSIVELY RICH, they are also about TEN YEARS OLD. Goodness ME - we sat in the bar AGOG at how they were allowing CHILDREN in the bar, and even seemed to EMPLOY some of them. YE GODS!

Ollie the promoter chap was also very young, a lovely chap who was a bit AFEARED i think to be faced with my ARCHAIC RAMBLINGS. I couldn't help myself and kept saying "Ooh,is it the Poly Bop tonight?" and "Are you in The Rock Soc?" I might as well have asked if the Disc Jockey had any Duke Ellington platters. Mr Frankie Machine soon arrived, closely followed by The Pattisons (with Tim ALSO saying "Pint of wine, Chips and Cheese") and, as the main band hadn't arrived yet, we fell to CHAT, including the GRATE NEW PUB GAME: Guessing Which Albums We ALL Owned. This was actually QUITE DIFFICULT - we began with "The Stone Roses" simply because Tom had recently PURCHASED it after the rest of us had expressed our HORROR that he had got into his thirties without ever owning a copy, and there was more to come as various people confessed to not having "It's A Shame About Ray", "Giant Steps" and many many more. Eventually we realised that there are only a FEW CDs we have in common - The White Album, "Velvet Underground & Nico", "Palomino" by John Sims and "The Italian Flag" by Prolapse - and some of THEM shouldn't really count. After all, Lou Reed was ALWAYS down the Durham Ox giving copies of his albums away, you couldn't NOT have one.

Eventually it was soundcheck time which was done at high speed as a) they wanted to open the bar and b) we wanted to go to the pub. We strolled across town to get some CHIPS then popped into The Criterion for DELICIOUS BEER. Mr Machine wasn't driving, so he was able to demonstrate his own DRINKS OF THE PAST, impressing us all at the start of the evening by attempting to RE-DRINK his OWN student favourite, GUINESS and TEQUILA. Unfortunately this was unavailable so he had to make do with GUINESS and BRANDY. Luckily the Criterion had NICE BEER, so we drank that instead.

Back to the venue we went and soon it was time to BEGIN, and this is what we played:
  • The Gay Train
  • Hey Hey 16K
  • Never Going Back To Aldi's
  • Do The Indie Kid
  • Things'll Be Different (when I'm in charge)
  • Leave My Brother Alone
  • Billy Jones Is Dead
  • The Lesson Of The Smiths
  • Easily Impressed

  • It felt GOOD - it's a long old while since we've all played together but we seemed to slip into it with EASE, and everything sounded pretty darn good, especially the LIVE DEBUT of Do The Indie Kid and ESPECIALLY especially the AVANT JAZZ FREAKOUT in the middle - it was GRATE. It was a shame then that not many people paid much attention to us - Ollie and Mr Steve McHaggis were down the front watching, and there was a small group of young people in the corner who seemed to be enjoying it (although one, who raised her hand when I asked "Anyone here from the Drama Society?" seemed TERRIFIED when I announced that i used to be in CHARGE of it, LO! as if i were a GRIM PORTENT of a possible FUTURE) but most of them had other things on their mind for a Friday night, which was MORE than fair enough. We thought it might take off at the start, when a bunch of YOUTHS started dancing down the front... but then they got fed up and packed it in!

    We were all quite happy though, and were in a jolly mood as we packed all our gear up and took it to the lift. We cheerily went downstairs with it... and suddenly felt us out the back of the building, with the doors shut behind us! I'd asked earlier about getting our gear from backstage, as most of us would need to leave before the other band had finished, and it seems they thought we had to go INSTANTLY - either that or the presence of a bunch of OLD GITS like us was spoiling it for everyone else, but it was all a bit STRANGE to suddenly be out in the cold like that! Tom went home to bed and The Pattisons gave Frankie and I a lift to the railway station, he to catch his train home and me to walk back to the aforesaid hotel for a much needed KIP.

    I retired HAPPY but TIRED... but MORE ROCK was to come.

    posted 25/3/2007 by MJ Hibbett

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    Guinness & TIA MARIA! It tasted like chocolate milkshake!

    Not Tequila - Tequila would be foolish & taste horrible.

    As it turned out so was Brandy.
    posted 26/3/2007 by Francis

    Gah! What was i thinking?!?
    posted 26/3/2007 by MJ Hibbett

    Nice boggyness - Impressed you lads went in there, I've been working next door for 2 years and only got as far as the Spa, I was AFEARED to go in lest they no longer have chips and beans and cheese. You is RIGHT about the students. Some of them even drive PORSCHES
    posted 28/3/2007 by Ne

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