• The Field at Bungalows & Bears, Sheffield

    Nov 17 2009, 1:55

    Mon 16 Nov – The Field, Run Hide Survive

    I recall when I found it hard to adapt to the way Axel Willner of The Field had gone with Yesterday and Today, but now that is well behind me and I just so adore that album.

    Well, on his current tour he has torn into our expectations again, and left some perplexed. But I have a slight advantage now, I've seen this twice before, and I came tonight with my expectations set to a different level. What I did not expect was to pick up the word remix from Dougie stood besides me after just ten seconds, and this is of course the key.

    Underneath the drums, the vocals and guitar there is still the same development in the theme, but it is just a little bit harder to find, but my God it certainly hits you when it blooms. It is exciting to think what is still left to be tried with tracks like Leave It.

    I understand the guys in the band were dead impressed with their reception tonight. Yes, Sheffield was the place to be, and in the precise locality of an old fire station called Bungalows and Bears. Happy times!
  • Primavera Sound

    Giu 9 2008, 14:48

    Fuck Buttons

    Well how can one express the experience? What is it, what does it mean, where does it take you and why does it matter?

    The set opens with enough drone and noise to begin to thin out the ranks from the casual observers, who realise they had better move on, from the knowing who gradually move forward to take up the best positions; mine on the very front row.

    I vaguely recall the press area being unusually quiet, and certainly empty after 10 minutes (as it was for all acts). I notice the special atmosphere of this place. Not the usual toilet venue or tent, but a full stage and some brilliant lighting, set against a deep dark night sky; it was 01.00 am. But as always, at the centre, the familiar apple Mac with Andrew Hung in his hoody, the suit case on the table, and Benjamin John Power opposite with his Mac and drum.

    As the first hint of a melody become discernable in Sweet Love of Mother Earth a picture forms in my head. It is an abstract one.

    It’s a tale of discovery, of scientific evaluation, of the ruthless elimination of possibilities that prove dead ends, of the trial of ideas and the raising of hope. And then, in the end, by some miraculous chance, when all comes together, as rarely it does in life, the exquisite joy of fulfilment, of finding the pattern, the resolution, the tune and a dance.

    We nod, we dance and finally we fly, and unlike Pegasus we reach the sun.


    I came across Caribou by chance. I was stood to the front on the left hand side of the stage, at the CD Drome stage.

    I was immediately impressed by the sound. Heavy drums, guitars, keyboard and vocals all performers at centre stage in a ring made for a tight set.

    At the time thoughts came to me IWACS for some reason.

    I am looking forward to seeing them again at the Greenman Fesival.


    Again I was right on very front row and had a superb view of this awesome band.

    British Sea Power

    Kev Kharas has written how the head hurts, but pain subsides. Well after twenty hours on my feet, over two days, I tell you it was not my head that hurt but parts unmentionable. Still I had the luxury of a nice warm bath to soothe away the pains.

    Rising from the warm salted waters, my mind was cast back to the performance of British Sea Power two days earlier.

    The setting: the Vice Jägermeister stage set on an island in the Forum harbour down from a bridge below Europe’s largest solar panel (set like a raised hand to the sun). The scene: the set well under way and swathes of people walking down the steps to join you, and me secure in a prime position near the very front of the crowd.

    Today I am on the side of the stage by the sea, the passing boats and with a good view of that wonderful solar roof.

    As the pace gradually builds up during the song and the first refrain of the bird sweeping by is played I look down, to find my feet. In an involuntary movement I clutch my heart. I look up and notice that Yan has seen me do this and he nods back a gesture of approval and then he looks up above the crowd. I follow his line of sight away from the stage back above the by now thronging crowd towards that fantastic view of the now illuminated bridge behind us.

    As the song reaches its climax and the piercing cry tears apart the sky, I trace the path of the imagined great bird as it passes the stage and moves out over sea. I may return to this scene, but in no way could the joy and triumph of that moment be repeated.