Monthly Archives: April 2011

Bangers – Small Pleasures: Album review (Evening Chronicle)

Small Pleasures is the first full length album from Cornish pop punk outfit, Bangers. From the high octane, up tempo bouncing introduction to the first track, Making Friends. You know what they were trying to create, and boy did they deliver. What you get is an album filled with passion, sizzling riffs, sing-along catchy hooks and an overwhelming urge to party. Managing to combine grizzly vocals with the best kind of punk dance rhythm, they grab hold of you in the first few seconds and don’t let go until the fade out of the final track. 9/10

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Harlem Globetrotters – Metro Radio Arena (Evening Chronicle)

World famous basketball trickesters The Harlem Globetrotters dribbled their way into Newcastle and showed everyone there, why they have lasted 85 years in the entertainment industry.

Full crowd participation was expected from the off, and due to their gleeful persistence, the crowd was soon warmed to the whooping, jeering and cheers which American crowds find so easy to do. The show was set around a full game of basketball between the Harlem Globetrotters and The Washington Generals. Some of the acrobatic skills and precision passing which were on display defied belief. Spectacular slam-dunks, unbelievable finger spins and over the shoulder shots were aplenty in an epic showing from the basketball world’s greatest show-offs.

Short entertaining episodes punctuated the main action, and kept the crowd, young and old, entertained. Such as the playful banter between two of the players chasings each other with buckets of water around the arena, and a very young boy being chosen from the crowd to perform an assisted slam-dunk, winning himself a signed jersey and a lifelong memory.

From the same team which brought the basketball world the slam-dunk and the alley-oop, was the introduction of the four point box, which came into play during certain parts of the game. This allowed for some spectacular long range efforts, which more often than not, swished into the basket followed by an audience wide cheer.

In fact the whole production was filled with quality from top to bottom. The corrupt referee fit the bill perfectly and The Washington Generals coach who was set up as the pantomime villain was roundly booed by the entire arena whenever he had the audacity to stand up. Harlem Globetrotter players The Big Easy and Cheese were the stand out characters of the night. Larger than life, and just as silly, they had me giggling like a child throughout the whole show, with the sort of slapstick humour which appeals to all ages.

http://www.chroniclelive.co.uk/entertainment-in-newcastle/theatre/2011/04/27/review-harlem-globetrotters-metro-radio-arena-72703-28591438/

Glastonbury 2011 Lineup announced

This years Glastonbury festival is set to take place on the 24th, 25th and 26th June. Three worldwide superstars are set to headline the festival on each night. Irish rockers U2 are headling the Pyramid stage on the Friday night, and are accompanied by Morrissey, Biffy Clyro and the Wu Tang Clan as well as many others. The Saturday night sees Coldplay take the headliner slot, following Elbow, Paolo Nutini and Tinie Tempah. The final night has Beyoncé set to strut her stuff after Pendulum, Plan B and Don Mclean have done their thing.

The full weekend line up is as follows;

With no Glastonbury festival next year, due to the London Olympics, have they tried to make a statement with the headliners? what are your thoughts? does Beyoncé fit the Glastonbury ideals?

Hugh Cornwell – Gateshead Sage (Evening Chronicle)

FORMERLY of punk band The Stranglers, Cornwell has been a solo artist for  over 20 years, releasing several albums. His show was split into three parts,  opening with Hugh and his band playing through all the tracks of landmark album  Guilty.

There was then a short set by special guests The Brothers From Brazil. The  night was closed by Hugh and the band, this time playing through the best of The  Stranglers back catalogue.

The reason for playing Guilty in its entirety was purely for his long-term  faithful fans. They had been requesting it for a while, so he obliged.  Black Hair Black Eyes Black Suit was one of the best songs from the album, an  up-tempo rhythmic rock track which resonated throughout the intimate room, while  Hot Head, which followed, was a different sort of track – a swaying melodic tune  which flowed softly.

Disappointingly, the song which gained the greatest success for The  Stranglers, Golden Brown, didn’t feature. Hugh explained that the encore songs  for the tour were chosen by online fans.

http://www.chroniclelive.co.uk/entertainment-in-newcastle/music/2011/04/11/review-hugh-cornwell-the-sage-gateshead-72703-28498866/

Wheatus – The Jupiter EP Review

Wheatus are a band which seem to be defined by that one song. You know the one im talking about. It’s in your head right now. Your humming along. ‘Teenage Dirtbag’ is probably the main reason most of you are even reading this review. But they have much more to offer than that little ditty.

Their interesting and enterprising idea for their newest EP’s is that they are to be up for download on their official website. The Pop, Songs & Death collection of EP’s will be released over the next few months and years, with no specific price point. They are ‘Pay what you want’ or ‘Pay what they’re worth’ and if you’re so inclined, you could even download them for free. That is £0. A bargain.

The most recent release is Pop, Songs & Death: Vol. 2 – The Jupiter EP. A collection of 6 songs which turns out to be incredibly well crafted and beautifully put together. It’s not castoffs and snippets which they havent seen fit to be released on other albums. They are all beautifully harmonic and toe-tap inducing bits of magic. They are epic in scale, with not one of the tracks coming in at below six minutes in length, and every second is put to good use and the tracks are as varied as they are complex. ‘The Story Of The Eggs’ is gentle considered number which builds up from a soft beginning, rising through the keys before hitting a quality crescendo before lulling you back down again. Whereas ‘Dream About The Devil’ encorporates a country-style swing, without ever losing the Wheatus vibe. It has a rise and fall which rolls like a wave that continues throughout, even as the final verse comes in and the tempo increases, as the country swagger is traded for a poppunk tempered verse.

Get yourselves over to http://wheatus.com/j_download_mp3_frameset.html and get them downloaded. You wont regret it.

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Katy Perry – Metro Arena Newcastle (www.gigape.com)

Ive got a review and a bunch of exclusive katy perry photos up on www.gigape.com following her show at the Metro Radio Arena Newcastle, on the 3rd of April. Go across and have a look, as you wont see these photos anywhere else, except in my portfolio.

http://musicinfocus.gigape.com/user/2011/04/04/katy-perry-wows-newcastle/

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Young Knives new album review (Evening Chronicle)

Young Knives – Ornaments From The Silver Arcade

Following their first two albums, which were released to critical acclaim. The latest offering from indie-rock trio Young Knives is a disappointment. Though It’s not to say the album doesn’t have its good points, Human Again, has a Kasabian-feel and rouses more energy than the rest of the album in a toe-tap inducing higher tempo number.  It’s an album which would have been seen as fashionably uncool if it were released around five or so years ago, but released now just doesn’t fit. Geek-chic with recycled synthesisers and awkward off beats, writhe and flex without ever hitting their usual highs. 6/10

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