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					                              email: nightshift@oxfordmusic.net           website: nightshift.oxfordmusic.net
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                              NIGHTSHIFT                                                        month.
                                                                                               Issue 120
                                                                                                  July
                               Oxford’s Music Magazine                                           2005




                                                Get read y for
                                                Get read y for


                              Truck
                              Truck
                              Complete Festival
                              Complete Festival
All photos by Miles Walkden




                              Preview IInsiide
                              Preview ns de
                                                       Win a pair of
                                                       weekend tickets!
                                 NIGHTSHIFT: PO Box 312, Kidlington, OX5 1ZU. Phone: 01865 372255
                                                                               FELL CITY GIRL are set




                                                                                                                                                            photo: Miles Walkden
         NEW S
     Nightshift: PO Box 312, Kidlington, OX5 1ZU
                                                                               to perform at this year’s
                                                                               Carling Weekend: Reading
                                                                               and Leeds Festivals. The
                                                                               former Nightshift cover
   Phone: 01865 372255 email: nightshift@oxfordmusic.net                       stars, who are unsigned
                                                                               but have been earning
                                                                               themselves an enviable
                                                                               reputation on the local gig
SUPERGRASS return with a new            For Treatment, Richard Walters         circuit and in London,
album and single in August. ‘Road       and Smilex, and Sunday 4th             have been picked to play
To Rouen’, the band’s fifth studio      September, which will be a launch      on the Carling Stage,
album, is released on the 15th          party for The Evenings’ new CD,        which aims to showcase
August. A single, St Petersburg’        with support from The Family           the best up and coming
precedes the album on the 8th           Machine and Fell City Girl.            acts around. The band will
August.                                                                        be the second act on the
                                       AVID RECORDS could be forced            Carling Stage on Friday at
THE PORT MAHON is set to               to close after Oxford City Council      Reading (August 26th) and
continue, and expand, its live music   imposed a backdated rent increase       Saturday at Leeds (27th).
output with the arrival of a new       that could see the shop faced with      They will share a stage
manager, John Russell-Smith, this      a 50% hike in its rent. Avid, in        with headliners Ladytron
month. The pub, now regarded as        Gloucester Street, which is the         and Charlotte Hatherley.
one of the best small venues in the    only independent record shop in          Speaking to Nightshift about the gig, Fell City Girl frontman Phil
area, is installing a new PA and       Oxford city centre and has been a       McMinn described the band’s excitement at earning such a prestigious
looking to build on the reputation it  goldmine of rare and second hand        slot: “I guess you’ll understand when I say it’s a massively big deal for
gained under previous landlord         vinyl for years, could be facing a      us - we’ve not been around that long but we’ve played hard and
Ralph Crabtree. John is keen to        backdated bill for around £40,000       playing at Reading (we’re even on the yellow poster!) is way beyond
hear from bands wanting to play,       after the rent revue is implemented,    anything I ever expected we’d ever be doing at this stage in the game.
especially acoustic acts. Send         an amount that would spell ruin for     No doubt we’ll break a bass string during the first song though! Jokes
demos to him c/o The Port Mahon,       a small retail operation. Councils      aside, we have much to prove, to ourselves more than anyone.”
82 St Clements, Oxford, OX4.           are required by law to charge            Fell City Girl release their new single, ‘Weaker Light’, in August on
                                       commercial rent rates but at a time     Nomadic Records.
SUITABLE CASE FOR                      when the Zodiac has just had its             Win weekend tickets to the Reading Festival – see page 16
TREATMENT release a new                planning application for an
album, ‘Of Motets and                  extension into a vacant
Misdirection’, on Friday 5th August neighbouring plot turned down by          will continue to work under The        URSA AUDIO is looking to
on Thin Man Records and will           the council who want to encourage      Factory name, while singer Laima       relocate this summer. The recording
play a gig in the unlikely setting of retail outlets, these rent increases    and guitarist Moty are also looking    and rehearsal studio in Cave Street,
the front lawn of Tate Britain to      make a mockery of such a decision.     for new musicians for a new            east Oxford, will be closing
launch it. The eleven-track album is So, another corporate coffee shop        project. Both sides cite the usual     temporarily this summer before
basically a compilation of their first for the city centre? It’s looking      musical differences as the cause of    setting up in a new location. In the
two mini-albums, ‘Plenty More          more and more likely.                  the split.                             meantime the URSA crew are
Neurologists In The Sea’, and last                                                                                   looking for anyone interested in
year’s ‘A Sinistra Case For The        AUDIOSCOPE festival will run           BIG SPEAKERS follow up their           taking over their current premises.
Laevus Levus’, with many of the        over two days this year. The mini-     recent Make Poverty History            Anyone interested should call
tracks remastered. The Tate Britain festival, which has raised over           benefit gig at the Zodiac last month   James on 07870357748.
gig is free and includes support       £10,000 for homeless charity           by releasing a cut-price compilation
from White Night, Two Men In A         Shelter since 2001, takes place at     CD of local bands in aid of the        THE CATWEAZLE CLUB takes a
Boat and The Mabuses, as well as       the Zodiac over the weekend of the     campaign. The eleven-track CD          well-earned summer break
a barbecue. Check out                  29th and 30th of October.              features contributions from Big        throughout August. The all-comers
suitablecasefortreatment.myanalog.net Audioscope regularly showcases          Speakers themselves, plus Asher        live music, poetry and performance
for more details.                      the best underground and leftfield     Dust, The Evenings, Sexy               club, which celebrated its tenth
                                       music from around the world and        Breakfast, Oliver Shaw, J/Tusa,        anniversary last year, opens its
SEXY BREAKFAST launch their            locally. Last year’s event was         Sunnyvale Noise Sub-Element, and       doors for the last time this summer
new website with another of their      headlined by former-Can frontman       Fragger, it costs just £3 and is       on Wednesday 27th July and
legendary boat parties on Sunday       Damo Suzuki.                           available from The Polar Bear on       returns on Wednesday 7th
31st July. The boat trip will include                                         Cowley Road as well as from            September. Thereafter it every
a trip down the Thames to              THIS YEAR’S FOX FM Party In            www.bigspeakers.co.uk                  Wednesday night at Northgate Hall
Abingdon and back plus a gig by        The Park takes place on Sunday                                                in St Michael’s Street. More details
Sexy Breakfast, with support from 28th August in South Park. Texas            THE MUSICIANS UNION will               at www.catweazleclub.org.
The Thumb Quintet and The Walk are the first band to be confirmed at          be hosting an open meeting at the
Off, followed by a glam-rock party the mini-festival, with more chart-        Zodiac on Thursday 7th July, from      LOCAL FIDDLE’N’SYNTH
at the Wheatsheaf which will           friendly acts to be announced soon.    7-10pm. The first hour of the          rockers Red Star Cycle play their
include a performance of Hedwig        Tickets, priced £10, are on sale       meeting is for MU members and          final shows this month before going
and the Angry Inch by SB               now, from 0870 042 7477. The           potential members to meet face-to-     their separate ways. The band play
frontman Joe Swarbrick. There will price includes a £1 donation to            face with regional representatives.    their last two gigs at Bicester
be a limited number of tickets         Help A Local Child.                    From 8pm there will be a               Hobgoblin (Thursday 7th and the
available for the boat party, priced                                          presentation on the new licensing      Wheatsheaf (Friday 8th).
£10, available from The Polar Bear, THE FACTORY have split into               law and what it will mean for
The Music Box and Salters              two factions with both sides           publicans, venue owners and            DON’T FORGET to tune into
Steamers on Folly Bridge. Further      looking for musicians to form new      promoters. Call South East             The Download each Saturday at
boat trips are planned for Sunday      bands. Guitarist and songwriter        Regional Officer Jo Laverty on         6pm on BBC Radio Oxford - the
21st August, featuring Suitable Case Aaron, plus Andy, Chris and Joe          0207 840 5523.                         best of local music on the radio.
  Truck 2005
 Biffy Clyro
                                                                                       Saturday 23rd - Sunday 24th July
                                                                                            Hill Farm, Steventon
                                                                                   discover. It’s impossible to do full        (essentially Truck’s host band) are
                                                                                   justice to a bill that takes in over        enduringly popular and reliably
                                                                                   100 acts across six stages in just          cool, while The Schla La La’s
                                                                                   over a page, without it descending          feature another Truck regular,
                                                                                   into a list of names you simply             Piney Gir, in her 60 garage punk
                                                                                   have to see. Equally, you can               girl band mode. Best of the local
                                                                                   pretty much bet your last penny             contingent should be the effusive
                                                                                   that the best thing you’ll see all          and inventive Sexy Breakfast.
                                                                                   weekend will be a band or artist             Over in the Trailerpark Tent, you
                                                                                   whom you’d never even heard of              could check out lo-fi screwballs
                                                                                   beforehand.                                 Fonda 500, Leeds’ dynamic post-
                                                                                    No act bears this out more than            rock assassins 65 Days Of Static
                                                                                   Do Me Bad Things. This year                 and Oxford’s hottest band, The
                                                                                   they’re second on the bill to The           Young Knives among a host of
                                                                                   Magic Number having blazed a trail          quality new acts.
                                                                                   across the UK’s live circuit since           The Barn That Cannot Be Named,
                                                                                   last summer. At Truck 2004,                 which was so much better for its
                                                                                   however, they were complete                 increased capacity last year, is host
                                                                                   unknowns who stole Nightshift’s             to headliners Capdown with their
                                                                                   hearts and sense of reserve, almost         high-energy ska-core, plus Echo &
                                                                                   lost halfway down the line-up on            The Bunnymen acolytes The
                                                                                   the tiny Trailerpark stage. Truck is        Editors; frenetic post-hardore
                                                                                   a great place to discover new,              types Summer of Mars with Silent
                                                                                   exciting, exotic and sometimes              Film, Harlette and P.Y.E leading a
                                                                                   downright daft new bands.                   strong local contingent.

THERE ARE TWO MAJOR                     having worked their way up, hand           SO, WHO TO SEE?                                         Yourcodenameis:milo
indicators of just how much Truck       over hand, into a genuine cult band.       Well the two headline acts of
Festival has become an established      Sunday’s headliners, The Magic             course: Scottish post-grunge
part of the UK’s festival season.       Numbers, are the real coup, though.        rockers Biffy Clyro are a dynamic,
The first is that this year it has      Last month their debut album               rousing live act well suited to a
sold out in advance quicker than        crashed into the Top10, while the          festival atmosphere. The Magic
ever before. Half the 4,000 tickets     press and radio have unanimously           Numbers, meanwhile, outwardly
were snapped up by music fans           hailed them as one of the best new         seem more homely, in a 60s folk-
from outside of Oxfordshire which       bands around (they were recently           pop kind of way, but they’ve got a
means that, even more than last         voted Best New Band at the Mojo            rougher, rockier edge too and are
year, the festival will feel even       Awards).                                   almost the epitome of a great
more like a major event and less         Below these two is a festival bill        summer band.
like a parochial fair. The second       of incredible breadth and depth.            Also essential viewing on the main
signifier is in the quality of the      Something for everyone, and                stage on Saturday are Sweden’s               The Cliffhangers, Peepshow
headline acts. While Saturday’s bill-   plenty more besides.                       Ravonettes, a gorgeous, fuzzed-up           Paddy and the Ralfe Band are
toppers Biffy Clyro perhaps                                                        take on classic Phil Spector-               among the highlights of the Lounge
typify the Truck way – of doing         WHAT MAKES TRUCK SUCH                      produced girl bands, only stuck             Tent, while the Acoustic Tent hosts
things yourself and caring not for      a joy and a problem to preview is          through The Jesus and Mary                  the likes of Zoë Bicat, Dive Dive,
the fickle hype of the national         the riches on offer, and the               Chain’s guitar mincer. Truck                The Tenderfoot, KTB and
press – they’re still major players,    guarantee of so many new treats to         regulars MC Lars and Goldrush               headliner Neil Halstead, one-time

                                                                                    ROMOTER’S VI
                                                                                  PRO
                                                                             T HE P RO MOTER’S V I EW
                                                                     Truck Festival Co-ordinator Robin Bennett on this year’s event
                                         What new things can festival-goers expect from Truck this year?
                                         “A spoken-word stage, better disabled viewing, a larger market field and acoustic tent, and possibly a giant inflatable pig.”
                                         Apart from size, what do you think makes Truck so different to other festivals?
                                         “Truck is different because it doesn’t follow a script on how to do things, and as almost everyone is working for
                                         free, they all do things with a spirit of fun. The music is diverse because we have all kinds of different tastes. It
                                         would probably be safer to appeal to one niche, but I like seeing goths dancing to drum & bass and vice versa!”
                                         If you you had to recommend three acts that people hadn’t heard of before, who would they be?
                                         “There are many, but how about.. Absentee, from London, who have some noir-ish music and a guy with a very
 The Magic                               low voice but still sound uplifting. The Ralfe Band play weird European sounding polkas and I’m looking forward
 Numbers                                 to them, whilst Nervous Test Pilot will probably be making some of the strangest electronic sounds you are likely
                                         to hear to a packed tent.”
                                                                               Band’s Eye View
                                                                                 nd’
                                                                               Band Eye View
                                                     The Raveonettes


                                                                              We asked some of the local stars of this year’s
                                                                              Truck for their feelings about the festival

                                                                              “My first truck was 1998 and I was just       “This is our first Truck ever! The label
                                                                              15. My brothers Robin and Joe and their       as a whole was a major reason why I
                                                                              now-deceased band Whispering Bob              picked Oxford to come and ‘do’
                                                                              were one of the headline acts and I’ll        university, so it’s kind of nice to be
                                                                              never forget doing the crazy marching         involved with something like that. My
                                                                              dance to ‘Don’t Bring Me Down’ in             tip for the weekend has to be
                                                                              front of the main stage with the sun          yourcodenameis:milo; they’re going to
                                                                              setting over Steventon Hill. At Truck         destroy.”
                                                                              98, I played one song and I caught the        Phil McMinn (Fell City Girl)
                                                                              performance bug there and then and have
                                                                              loved playing live since. Truck 2003          “I want to see how Truck has changed
                                                                              was a crazy year cos I was headlining the     since I’ve been away, and I’m looking
                                                                              main stage on the Sunday night with a         forward to playing some new stuff.
                                                                              16-piece band and so was nervous for the      Favourite thing about Truck: the
                                                                              whole weekend. The gig was fab but I’d        proximity of everything, so people
                                                                              been so worried cos we’d only had about       passing by your gig en route to a
lead singer of Slowdive, now            synth meddlers Mesaplex (formed       two hours rehearsal with the full band.       radically different one sometimes stop by
ploughing a sweet folk-pop furrow.      by various ex-Meanwhile Back In       I’d love to headline again one day,           for a listen. Least favourite thing: the
 And after all that, and so much else   Communist Russia members) and         maybe with the LSO and a samba band           food”
besides, there’s dance music into       Truck Records’ own Trademark.         and an 80-strong choir. In my dreams.”        Zoë Bicat
the wee small hours from a wide                                               Katy Bennett (aka KTB)
                                         Wander further and you’ll find
range of DJs and sound systems;         some great local stuff in the         “Truck for me is like a sweet shop
enough to send every party animal       Lounge, including Cassette For        where all the sweets are made of music,
home to their tent happy.               Cassette, The Mon£yshots, The         except there are none of those stupid
                                        Walk Off, and Mark Cope’s Nine        little blue bobbly ones that taste of
SUNDAY, AS TENDS TO BE                                                        chlorine and wasteful sterility. My
                                        Stone Cowboy, while country
                                                                              experience of playing has been akin to
traditional at Truck, starts in a       legends Chip Taylor and Carrie        crashing a truck full of batteries into a
mellow fashion and quickly picks        Rodriguez, sublime goth wraiths       robot Bar Mitzvah, but wandering
up speed. On the Main Stage you         The Cranes and former Ride leader     around a field full of sweating teenagers
can skank lazily to The Drug            Mark Gardener are the highlights at   and catatonic hippies who probably have
Squad, do a spot of robot dancing                                             names like “Sky Spectrum Mansion
                                        the Acoustic stage.
                                                                              Carnival” is really why I return year after
                                                                              year, like a moth to a sparkler.”
                                                                              Paul Taylor (aka nervous test_pilot)           “As a veteran of all but one Truck, it is
 For a full Truck Festival Line-up, go to                                                                                   always an honour and pleasure to play.
                                                                              “To my eternal shame I’ve never been to       What’s so special about Truck is that it
          www.truckfestival.org                                               Truck before, so you can’t believe how        is a weekend wandering around in a field
                                                                              excited I am that we’re playing this year.    in a trance, watching some great bands
                                                                              The bands I’m looking forward to the          and camping with friends from all parts of
 along to Piney Gir’s synth-pop         BUT REALLY, THAT’S JUST               most are sikTh, Editors and                   the Oxford music scene and beyond.
 set or try line dancing to The         the tip of the iceberg and we know    yourcodenameis:milo. The only problem         There is never a dull moment and there
 Epstein’s full-blooded country         that the band we enjoy best will      is that we’re playing early on Sunday;        is always something to suit anyone’s
                                                                              not that that will stop us enjoying           tastes. It will be great to see The Bear
 rock before south London soul-         probably be something strange and                                                   (from The Walk Off) in a more natural
                                                                              ourselves.”
 punk-funk-metal collective Do          wonderful from beyond this list.      Michael (The Half Rabbits)                    environment - will he shit in the nearby
 Me Bad Things take the party to        While the UK’s expanding summer                                                     woods? Oh and of course, let’s not forget
 another level altogether.              festival scene becomes ever more      “Truck is a great example of how              the cross-dressing bar staff, the badger in
  In the Trailerpark Tent Truck         corporate and homogenous, Truck       thriving the music scene is here in           a dress and ice cream from the local
                                                                              Oxford, so good that it’s attracting          vicar.”
 stalwarts Black Neilson headline,      remains an example of what a great                                                  Dave Crabtree (The Mon£yshots)
                                                                              people from outside the city now too.
 carving out splendid desert pop        festival should be like. Make the     The line-up this year looks to be one of
 landscapes, while local                most of it.                           the best yet, with Captive State, The         I’m really looking forward to playing
 supergroup Easy Tiger                                                        Spiralist, The Epstein, DJ Marky, Meat        Truck this year; there’s always such a
 turn it into a stadium-                           Do Me Bad Things           Katie and The Magic Numbers being             great atmosphere. This year, I’m really
                                                                              potential highlights for me.”                 looking forward to seeing The Young
 sized celebration, The                                                                                                     Knives - they’re one of my favourite
                                                                              DJ Peepshow Paddy
 Half Rabbits mine a                                                                                                        Oxford bands, and it’s been too long
 dark New Wave vein                                                                                                         since I’ve seen them. I also want to
 and new Truck Records                                                                                                      check out the Schla La Las, and The
 signings Forward,                                                                                                          Raveonettes. I really admire the
                                                                                                                            opportunity it gives to smaller local
 Russia make their first                                                                                                    bands. The thing I like least about Truck
 mark on the local scene.                                                                                                   is the ridiculously hard ground that
  Leading UK metal                                                                                                          leaves me with bruises when I wake up.
 lights Sikth headline The                                                                                                  Gah.
 Barn Stage, along with                                                                                                     Emma Short (Cassette For Cassette)
 Newcastle’s mighty
                                                                                                                            “Favourite memory: getting into a fight
 Yourcodenameis:milo,                                                         “We love Truck. We recorded our very          with a boy’s jealous girlfriend over me
 who recently tore rock a                                                     first demo as part of the Truck Club          singing with him and consequently
 new backside at the                                                          Juniors Project in early 2004, so it’s        waking up with `twat’ written in nail
 Zodiac. They’re joined                                                       great to be part of the Truck experience      varnish on my tent! Also the great Shla
                                                                              this year. Especially as we’re looking        La Las performance, which inspired me
 by the truly dreadful
                                                                              forward to seeing 65daysofstatic, The         to form an all-girl band with, erm,
 Towers of London, UK                                                         Walk Off and Forward, Russia.”                Jeremy.”
 emo vets Reuben,                                                             Staz (Harlette)                               Chantelle Pike (The Cliffhangers)
 Hondo Mclean and local
RELEASED
                                                                              Sponsored
                                                                                     by




DIVE DIVE                                                                                                THE RELATIONSHIPS
‘Tilting At Windmills’                                                                                   ‘Scene’
(Diablo)                                                                                                 (Trailer Star)
Given their lengthy tenure at the top of the                                                             “This is a very English blues / Falling like rain
Oxford pop tree, it’s a wonder that Dive Dive                                                            on barbecues.” If any couplet sums up The
can still sound so abundantly full of life. But so                                                       Relationships, it’s this. Twelve-string guitars
it is with this long-awaited debut album,                                                                might shimmer and chime with the idle
following on from three chart-bothering singles                                                          elegance of The Byrds, but ‘Scene’ feels as
for the label.                                                                                           English as Elgar and semi-detached houses.
 Named after Don Quixote’s desperate squaring                                                             The Relationships exist in the comfort zone
up to imagined monsters, ‘Tilting At Windmills’                                                          of sadness: staring through net curtains, large
finds singer Jamie Stuart venting his frustration                                                        brandy in hand, reflecting on the rain and
at self-created or imagined problems, but the                                                            missed opportunities. This, their second
angst is kept bottled at home, self-pity                                                                 album, like its predecessor, is full of
subsumed by splenetic exuberance. While              has ever produced. But of course it’s the songs     mysterious girls, galleries and strange
several years of almost constant gigging may         that matter: their gleeful aggression, the sudden   suburbia. But The Relationships have never
have stolen some of Dive Dive’s live                 breakdowns and charging melodies that stick         sounded this complete before, at once
spontaneity, as it does with many bands, it          their barbs into you and just won’t let go. If      ephemeral and timeless. Richard Ramage’s
can’t smooth away their sharp edges and this         much of ‘Tilting At Windmills’ sounds familiar      delicately-arranged songs and reflective,
album is one of those rare occasions where the       it’s because once you’ve heard the songs, they      slightly surreal lyrics take centre stage but it’s
music seems to physically reach out of the           stay with you. So previous singles ‘Good            Angus Stevenson’s spangled guitar licks that
stereo and compel you to have fun.                   Show’, ‘555 For Film Stars’ and ‘Name And           complete the sometimes magical effect.
 Dive Dive’s strength is their remarkable            Number’ are instant easy friends. It’s a            ‘Flying Saucer Girl’ is almost a perfect pop
individual components: singer and guitarist          clamouring mini riot but meticulously executed.     song: solid and simple, full of fanciful
Jamie with his grunge choirboy yelp and puppy        Mostly it’s rapid-fire punk-pop but the likes of    thoughts and understated hooks. Similarly
dog bile; fellow guitarist Ben Lloyd who never       new single, ‘The Sorry Suitor’ are nervy ballads    ‘Princess’, a dinky nursery rhyme that oozes
imposes his ego on the task in hand and allows       of a more tender nature. There’s plenty of          loneliness but forever carries you along with a
the songs to breathe; Tarrant Anderson who           rumbustious fun, but intelligence too. Dive Dive    sunshine guitar twang. But it’s ‘English Blues’
attacks his bass with something like complete        are as lithe and sweet as Bambi but as hard and     that takes The Relationship’s sweet, simple
contempt and is so much more than just part of       spiky as a Persian chariot. Ready for battle and    formula takes to its conclusion, with its
a rhythm section. And finally drummer Nigel          destined for victory.                               mentions of butlers, potting sheds and
Powell, surely one of the best sticksmen Oxford      Sue Foreman                                         eiderdowns and shrouded in a warm fug of
                                                                                                         melancholy that doesn’t want to impose.
                                                                                                          Oxford produces so many great new bands;
                                                                                                         there always seems to be another shooting
                                                     for one. And it’s hardly a label of shame when      star ready to speed through our field of vision,
AT RISK                                              the music has more in common with the varied        but The Relationships, ten years young, and
‘Faith In Fairytales’                                and often colourful (yes, really) world of the      with members whose musical history goes
                                                                                                         back to the early-80s, might just have eclipsed
                                                     original early-80s goth sound than the Eldritch-
(Quickfix)                                           leeching dirge-mongers that inhabited the cul-de-   the lot of them with one of the most gently
Who on earth would happily describe their own        sac goth later became.                              wonderful albums you’ll hear this year.
band as goth in this day and age? Well, At Risk       Fronted by effervescent and coolly glamorous       Dale Kattack
                                                     singer Cat, At Risk cut out smoky, bolshy slabs
                                                     of distorted pop of a slightly darker shade, the
                                                     fizzing guitars providing a solid but unobtrusive
                                                     canvas for Cat’s alternately girlish or soaring
                                                     vocals. At their best, as on the billowing,
                                                     haunted pure pop of ‘Frostbite’, they’re
                                                     somewhere between Bang Bang Machine’s epic
                                                     art-grunge and Strawberry Switchblade’s polka
                                                     dot pop. Of course there are odd moments
                                                     when it sounds like they’re trying a bit too hard
                                                     to be, like, all dark and mysterious, like on
                                                     ‘Drowned’ with its images of waves washing
                                                     over the hapless victim as a metaphor for
                                                     drowning in life, but they never layer the
                                                     misery and panstick on too heavily.
                                                     Victoria Waterfield

                                Selected Oxford releases are now available on the ground floor

              HMV Oxford supports local music
  Open Sundays 11-5pm & late Thursdays till 7pm.                                                         10% student discount every day
DAVID K FRAMPTON                                       BIG SPEAKERS
‘Dragonslayer’                                         ‘Big Speakers’
(My Initials)                                          (Own Label)
Local experimental soundmaker David K                  The idea of hip hop from Oxford – hell,
Frampton’s latest mini-album is released on My         predominantly white hip hop from Oxford at
Initials, a label that prides itself on its esoteric   that – should be anathema to the whole so-
roster. In the past David’s punished us with           called urban schtik, but anyone who caught Big
some seriously brutal electronic noise, but with       Speakers rip up the Cellar at the Punt back in
‘Dragonslayer’ he claims to have toned down            May will testify to their authenticity.
some of the mayhem. Initially at least he seems         Of course Big Speakers in their continually
to be telling the truth, with ‘Taurokathapsis’         expanding form have been around the local
washing in waves of textured electronic sound          scene for a few years now, earning themselves a
like a cross between a primitive Jean Michel           clutch of Nightshift Demo Of The Month
Jarre and a more simplistic Steve Reich, but after     awards in the process, but 2005 finds the
that things get a bit random. There are bursts of      collective fully formed (four MCs plus vocalist
sparse dub, abstract drill’n’bass, doomy bass          AJ, decks, samples, drums and guitars), this is       themselves have started to take their
synth doodles and more menacing snatches of            their first full-length CD, part album part           homegrown rappers seriously, years after the
horror film scores, like something ripped from         collection of recent demos.                           French, Italians and even Israelis. Big Speakers,
Hellraiser or Event Horizon, with barely                The vibe is predominantly old school rap with        like the best of their British counterparts, know
decipherable vocals masking untold horrors.            a softer trip hop underbelly and diversions into      that the best way to sound true is to rap about
 At its best, like in the more nightmarish             ragga, jazz and soul. The five-vocal frontline        what they know – in this case, anything from
‘Crushface Roosevelt’ and ‘Sweetheart’, it’s           gives Big Speakers plenty of scope for variety        feelings on the Iraq war and the potentially
captivating, although you feel it’d benefit            and they play their hand well, the lead               imminent death of Maggie Thatcher, to simpler
enormously from some gut-churning visual               switching from Sourface’s lispy Frank Black           love songs. Once in a while, like on the stoner
accompaniment. At other times you just feel like       delivery to AJ’s softer, Horace Andy-leaning          tilt of `Science’, they can be a bit stilted, but
David’s simply discovered an interesting sound         offerings.                                            such moments are rare and for the most part
patch and pissed about with it for a minute or          The beats and backing are rarely punishing,          there’s a warm fluidity as they switch leads.
until he got bored. Unlikely to be filling a           giving this 10-track album a more laid-back feel       London-centric snobbery might make it harder
dancefloor anywhere near you, or supporting            than their contorting live show. “This is an          for Big Speakers to be taken seriously outside
Coldplay on tour any time soon, Mr Frampton            Englishman’s rap”, they offer on `Wake Up’,           of Oxford but with successful gigs around the
needs a proper vessel to carry his sounds. If you      with its echoes of Credit To The Nation and           rest of the country already under their belt,
notice any gateways to hell opening down your          you realise that this is a different beast entirely   they’re already proving they can lead an
street, grab a camcorder and give him a ring.          to its American cousin. Funny and sad that it’s       unlikely revolution.
Victoria Waterfield                                    only in the last couple of years that the Brits       Dale Kattack
           gig guide
              FRIDAY 1st
THE WALK OFF + THE SHLA LA LAS +
THE KEYBOARD CHOIR + CAMP
ACTOR: The Zodiac – Baton down the
                                                           JULY                                        metallers Outofinto.
                                                                                                       THE CHAPEL: The Bullingdon - Local bands
                                                                                                       showcase.
                                                                                                       SUEDE ALIENS: The Black Horse,
                                                                                                       Kidlington
hatches and head for the air raid shelter as The   KLUB KAKOFANNEY with SUITABLE
Walk Off unleash another volley of their           CASE FOR TREATMENT + HELLSET                                    MONDAY 4th
industrial hardcore mayhem: pressure cooker        ORCHESTRA + THE MULES: The                          THE PAUL COX BAND: The Bullingdon –
electro-rock with a dancing bear. Support comes    Wheatsheaf – An excellent bill at tonight’s KK,     UK blues and soul singer revisits the Monday
from Piney Gir’s 60s-themed garage rockers,        with mutant gospel metallers SC4T headlining.       night blues club.
coming on like a cross between The Runaways        Inspiringly camp noise from the suitably            SALSANEROS: The Cellar – Weekly Latin
and The Ronettes.                                  orchestral Hellset – an eight-piece ensemble        dance club night with live salsa from Salsaneros.
LEBURN: The Exeter Hall, Cowley – Live             featuring Hammond lead, a string quartet,
blues.                                             drums, bass and sampler and coming on like
                                                                                                                   TUESDAY 5th
                                                   Sparks, ELO and Tindersticks soundtracking an       JAZZ CLUB with ROGER INNES: The
                                                   old Hammer Horror flick. Don’t be surprised if      Bullingdon – Excellent free entry jazz club
 Wednesday 6th                                     they’re huge a year from now.                       with guest band providing the live sounds, plus
                                                                                                       DJs til late.
 LOVE with ARTHUR                                  ACOUSTIC NIGHT: The Victoria, Jericho
                                                   OXFORD FOLK CLUB OPEN NIGHT: The                    THE LITTLE EXPLORER + THE JESUS
 LEE: The Zodiac                                   Port Mahon                                          YEARS + THIS TOWN NEEDS GUNS: The
                                                                                                       Wheatsheaf – Local bands showcase.
 A welcome return visit to town for Arthur         BACKROOM BOOGIE: The Bullingdon
                                                   LIVE AT COOPER 10: Cooper School,                   DELICIOUS MUSIC OPEN MIC
 Lee, two years after his last gig at Brookes,                                                         SESSION: The Old School House
 now celebrating almost 40 years of inspiring      Bicester – Local young bands showcase in aid
                                                   of cancer research, featuring Andensum, ATN,        OPEN MIC SESSION: The Exeter Hall,
 young pop pups to greater heights of                                                                  Cowley
 psychedelic wonder. Follwing a critically-        Black Mesa, Carnage, Chokehold and Grinder.
                                                   HQ: The Cellar – Transmute Records night            CHIARINA: Café Rouge – Weekly acoustic
 acclaimed return to live performing in 2002,                                                          folk, jazz and pop residency.
 after a spell in prison, Arthur Lee embarks       with Linus and Exxon.
 on another extensive tour. From those early                  SATURDAY 2nd                                      WEDNESDAY 6th
 days on the Sunset Strip club circuit and         PHYAL + JUNKIE BRUSH + VERBAL KINK                  LOVE with ARTHUR LEE: The Zodiac –
 becoming the first rock band to sign to           + HARRY ANGEL + THE PROCESS: The                    Legendary 60s psychedelic pop fella continues
 Elektra Records, through groundbreaking           Exeter Hall, Cowley – Launch gig for the new        the comeback trail – see main preview.
 albums like the proto-punk pop of ‘De             ‘Fresh Faces For The Modern Age’                    COROFIN & FRIENDS: The Exeter Hall,
 Capo’ and the epoch-making ‘Forever               compilation, featuring a selection of local up      Cowley – Weekly trad Irish folk residency.
 Changes’, to the drug and alcohol-fuelled         and coming punk, metal and heavy rock bands.        CATWEAZLE CLUB: Northgate Hall – All-
 turmoil that precipitated the band’s collapse,    WHOLE LOTTA LED: The Zodiac – Led                   comers live music and poetry club.
 Love were always above and apart from the         Zeppelin tribute band.                              PHONIK SETIONS: The Cellar
 hippy dreamers, and Arthur Lee, the only          BROTHERS OF INVENTION + BLUEWAX:                               THURSDAY 7th
 member to survive the band’s entire career,       The Wheatsheaf                                      VALIUM: The Exeter Hall, Cowley
 has never lost his ability to exude               SIMPLE: The Bullingdon – Funky house                THE YOUNG KNIVES + FORWARD,
 individuality and cool while constantly           club night.                                         RUSSIA: The Cellar – Truck Festival warm-
 offering glimpses of his pop genius through       30th BIRTHDAY SPECIAL: Nettlebed Folk               up with local favourites The Young Knives and
 a patchy solo career. So here he is, perfect      Club – South Oxfordshire’s legendary folk club      new Truck Records signings Forward, Russia.
 pop’s great uncle.                                celebrates its 30th anniversary with a night of     DELICIOUS MUSIC JAZZ AND BLUES
                                                   old favourites, including Hugh Crabtree, Pete       SESSION: Far From The Madding Crowd
                                                   Lincoln, plus stars of Feast of Fiddles.
                                                   LIVE AT COOPER 10: Cooper School,
                                                   Bicester (2pm) – Second day of the cancer
                                                   research benefit fundraiser, featuring a full day
                                                   of local bands, including Enola Tribe, Fatally
                                                   Yours, Girls R Louder, Inacus, Krissy’s Blues
                                                   Boys, Mainstream and more.
                                                   NED KELLY: Chipping Norton FC
                                                   SLIGHTLY MAD: The Red Lion, Witney
                                                   FRESH OUT OF THE BOX: The Cellar –
                                                   Breakbeats party style.
                                                                SUNDAY 3rd
                                                   ROCK IN THE PARK with HARRY ANGEL
                                                   + OUTOFINTO + ALL YOU MISS + AT
                                                   RISK + THE CLIFFHANGERS: Manor
                                                   Road Recreation Ground, Wantage (1pm) –
                                                   Outdoor all-dayer with a goodly selection of
                                                   local noise makers, including gothabilly
                                                   heavyweights Harry Angel and old school
THE HALF RABBITS + RED STAR CYCLE
+ HARRY ANGEL: The Hobgoblin, Bicester
                                                               TUESDAY 12th
                                                    JAZZ CLUB with THE TOM GREY
– Various shades of new wave noise with
                                                    QUINTET: The Bullingdon
Chameleons-inspired Half Rabbits headlining.
                                                    DELICIOUS MUSIC OPEN MIC
SPIN JAZZ CLUB with STEVE LODDER:
                                                    SESSION: The Old School House
The Wheatsheaf
                                                    OPEN MIC SESSION: The Exeter Hall,
SKYLARKIN: The Brickworks – Weekly DJ
                                                    Cowley
session with Aidan Larkin and guests playing a
                                                    CHIARINA: Café Rouge
varied selection of ska, reggae, funk, Latin and
                                                    INTRUSION: The Cellar – Goth and
Afrobeat.
                                                    industrial club night.
SABOTAGE: The Zodiac – Weekly club night
from The Club That Cannot Be Named playing                 WEDNESDAY 13th
classic and new metal, punk and indie.              COROFIN & FRIENDS: The Exeter Hall,
MAMPI SWIFT + IC3: Atlantic Bar – A                 Cowley
Night of drum&bass as Charge Records launch         GIGSWAP UK SHOWCASE: The
their latest album.                                 Wheatsheaf
              FRIDAY 8th                            CATWEAZLE CLUB: Northgate Hall                      Thursday 7th
                                                                                        th
PLACE ABOVE + HARLETTE + 20/20                               THURSDAY 14                                SUZANNE VEGA:
VISION + ACCIDENTALLY INNOCENT:                     ANTHRAX: The Zodiac – The classic line-up
The Zodiac – Place Above bow out as the
members head off for university, with support
                                                    of the metal legends reunites – see main preview    The New Theatre
                                                    THE DOMES OF SILENCE + THE UNISEX
                                                                                                        One of only a handful of UK dates on her
from goth-grungers Harlette and more.               + THE RACE + SEAGULL STRANGE: The
                                                                                                        current acoustic tour finds Suzanne Vega still
RED STAR CYCLE + SHIRLEY +                          Zodiac – Shifty Disco Records showcase tour
                                                                                                        able to fill a venue of this size, 18 years after
CHANTELLE PIKE: The Wheatsheaf – Red                with Bicester’s glam-goth rockers Domes of
                                                                                                        her biggest chart hit. New York-born
Star Cycle bow out with this final gig, taking      Silence headlining.
                                                                                                        songstress Vega emerged out of the same
the various parts of their New Model Army-          KOHOUTEK: The Exeter Hall, Cowley –
                                                                                                        Greenwich Village folk scene in the mid-80s
influenced synth’n’fiddle rock to the far corners   Local acoustic rockers.
                                                                                                        that had spawned Bob Dylan and Joan Baez
of the globe.                                       BROTHERS OF INVENTION + ASHER
                                                                                                        in the 60s, and initially at least she followed
ACOUSTIC NIGHT: The Victoria, Jericho               DUST: The Cellar – Live funk and breakbeats
                                                                                                        a similarly political lyrical path, albeit with a
OXFORD FOLK CLUB with DAVE                          from the Brothers, plus Streets-y electro, dub
                                                                                                        strangely skewed and personal perspective.
WEBBERS & ANNI FENTIMAN: The Port                   and hip hop from Asher Dust.
                                                                                                        Hits like ‘Marlene On The Wall’ and ‘Luka’
Mahon                                               UZIZI: The Red Lion, Witney
                                                                                                        dealt with bedsit isolation and child abuse
BACKROOM BOOGIE: The Bullingdon                     DELICIOUS MUSIC JAZZ AND BLUES
                                                                                                        respectively, while songs like ‘Men In A
THE UNDERDOGS Vs SLIDE: Studio                      SESSION: Far From The Madding Crowd
                                                                                                        War’ detailed the experiences of military
Lounge, Westgate – Weekly club night playing        SKYLARKIN: The Brickworks
                                                                                                        amputees. Her career received an added
funky house and breaks.                             SABOTAGE: The Zodiac
                                                                                                        boost in 1900 with DNA’s remix of ‘Tom’s
OVERDRIVE: The Marlborough Hotel,
Witney
                                                                 FRIDAY 15th                            Diner’. In recent years her songs and subject
                                                    FUCK OFF MACHETE + HARRY ANGEL +                    matter have mellowed considerably, tending
SOUNDS OF THE JAM: The Red Lion,
                                                    HOOKERS GREEN No.1 + AND NO STAR:                   towards more romantic themes, but she’s
Witney
                                                    The Wheatsheaf – Scuzzy Sonic Youth-                gone on to be a massive influence on
           SATURDAY 9th                             inspired post-hardcore noise from headliners        subsequent generations of female folk
THE TREAT: The Exeter Hall, Cowley –                Fuck Off Machete at tonight’s Vacuous Pop           singers, notably Alanis Morrisette and Beth
60s-styled melodic rockers.                         club night. Support from gothic rockers Harry       Orton, and she remains a uniquely talented
BARAKA: The Coven – A Night of psy-trance           Angel, Aberdeen’s pastoral pop people,              singer.
with DJs Arvy, Ryan H and 22 Bing.                  Hookers Green No.1 and instrumental post-rock
HIGH VOLTAGE: The Red Lion, Witney                  from Wantage’s And No Star.                                 SATURDAY 16th
ENDLESS GROOVE: The Cellar – Hip hop                PORTER BOYS: The Exeter Hall, Cowley               THE RELATIONSHIPS: The Port Mahon –
and drum&bass club night.                           SOURCE: The Zodiac – Drum&bass club                Launch gig for the veteran band’s excellent new
            SUNDAY 10th                             night with sets from Jibba and Rogue, Hussla,      album, ‘Scene’.
                                                    Dubplate and Smokey.                               PHYAL: The Exeter Hall, Cowley – Punk-
ELECTRIC JAM: The Exeter Hall, Cowley
                                                    ACOUSTIC NIGHT: The Victoria, Jericho              metal noise from the Bicester faves.
(5pm) – Join in with the in-house rhythm
                                                    THE EVENINGS + FELL CITY GIRL + THE                GUNNBUNNY + IN THE FLESH +
section; all musicians welcome.
                                                    CLIFFHANGERS + KAZOR +                             HOLIDAY STABBINGS: The Wheatsheaf –
FAJITA EATERS: The Black Horse,
                                                    RETRIBUTION + DJ REACTOR MIND:                     Howling grunge-blues and garage punk from the
Kidlington
                                                    The Net, Abingdon – Local bands showcase at        mighty Gunnbunny, with support from
THE CHAPEL: The Bullingdon - Local bands
                                                    tonight’s special under-18s gig. Synth-rock        metallers In the Flesh and riotous dissonance
showcase.
                                                    experimenters The Evenings
            MONDAY 11th                             headline with support from fast-
THE WILDCARDS: The Bullingdon – The                 rising rockers Fell City Girl and
band formed from the ashes of The                   more.
Nightporters and currently ripping it up on the     OXFORD FOLK CLUB OPEN
European blues festival circuit with their blend    NIGHT: The Port Mahon
of classic blues, jump and rockabilly, fronted by   EVOLUTION: The Red Lion,
singer and guitarist Vince Lee and promoting        Witney
new album ‘On Fire’.                                BACKROOM BOOGIE: The
SALSANEROS: The Cellar                              Bullingdon
THE KARINE POLWART TRIO: Nettlebed                  BOSSAPHONIK: The Cellar
Folk Club – Sometime singer with Scottish           – Latin dance night with live
folk giants The Battlefield Band and winner of      bossanova act tbc.
three awards at this year’s BBC Radio 2 Folk        THE UNDERDOGS Vs SLIDE:
Awards.                                             Studio Lounge, Westgate
                                                             SUNDAY 17th                             local siren Chantelle Pike supports with her
                                                                                                     band.
                                                 JOSH ROUSE: The Zodiac – Rising
                                                                                                     SKYLARKIN: The Brickworks
                                                 American folk singer makes his Oxford debut –
                                                                                                     SABOTAGE: The Zodiac
                                                 see main preview
                                                 THE CLIFFHANGERS: The Bullingdon –                              FRIDAY 22nd
                                                 Singer Chantelle Pike’s all-girl-with-token-bloke   TRANSMISSION: The Exeter Hall, Cowley
                                                 rock project.                                       – Epic indie rock in a Muse vein.
                                                 BEN DUGGARD & LEE DAVIES: The                       ACOUSTIC NIGHT: The Victoria, Jericho
                                                 Exeter Hall, Cowley                                 OXFORD FOLK CLUB with LARKRISE +
                                                 NATION: The Black Horse, Kidlington –               RANTERS & FRIENDS: The Port Mahon –
                                                 Chart-friendly stadium pop from the local           Assorted local folk luminaries join on harp,
                                                 hopefuls, set to headline their own New             hammer dulcimer, bouzouki, accordion and
 Thursday 14th                                   Theatre gig next month.                             fiddle.
                                                 THE CHAPEL: The Bullingdon - Local bands            BACKROOM BOOGIE: The Bullingdon
 ANTHRAX:                                        showcase.                                           BLON-D: The Red Lion, Witney
                                                            MONDAY 18th                              BLUNTED: The Cellar – Hip hop club night.
 The Zodiac                                                                                          THE UNDERDOGS Vs SLIDE: Studio
 Yes that’s right, Anthrax. At the Zodiac.       AYNSLEY LISTER: The Bullingdon –
                                                                                                     Lounge, Westgate
 Anthrax. Gods of metal. Anthrax, who just       Heavy duty blues rock from the acclaimed
 played to 60,000 people at Download and         young British guitarist, equally at home playing              SATURDAY 23rd
 won best metal band in the world in Metal       it raw and acoustic or pumping it up in a           TRUCK FESTIVAL: Hill Farm Steventon
 Hammer’s Golden Gods Awards. Anthrax            Hendrix style on the electric.                      (from midday) – Day one of Oxford’s premier
 who, along with Metallica and Slayer,           INME: The Zodiac – Sigh. They’re back. The          live music festival with a headline set from
 rejuvenated a crumbling dynasty in the mid-     Essex grunge starlets fritter away their major      Biffy Clyro on the main stage – see main
 80s, going on to sell over 10,000,000 albums    label advance on pristine production values,        preview feature.
 worldwide and becoming one of the most          while wringing the last desperate droplets of
 influential rock bands of the past 20 years.    Kurt’s creative spirit onto their by-numbers         Sunday 17th
 Yes, that Anthrax. At the Zodiac. One hell of   angst-rock and hoping their pubescent fans
 a coup for The Club That Cannot Be              don’t grow up too quickly and realise what           JOSH ROUSE:
 Named. From their early skate-punk-             utter pish they’re wasting their time and money
 influenced racket, through classic albums       on. New album, ‘White Butterfly’, is out soon        The Zodiac
 like `Spreading The Disease’ and ‘Among         on V2. Bush, Silverchair, Puddle of Mudd: look       He comes from Nashville, his new album is
 The Living’, including return-to-form album,    at their lineage and weep, dear music fan.           called ‘Nashville’, and it’s got a pedal steel
 ‘Stomp 442’, as well collaborating with         SALSANEROS: The Cellar                               on it, but Josh Rouse doesn’t wear a Stetson
 Public Enemy on ‘Bring The Noise’,              PETER KNIGHT, TOM LEARY & KEVIN                      or rhinestones, thankfully. Instead country-
 Anthrax have rarely lost their grip, survived   DEMPSEY: Nettlebed Folk Club – Steeleye              folk star Rouse is closer to the likes of Ryan
 various line-up changes and the vagaries of     Span fiddler Peter Knight teams up with his          Adams or Carol King, with a rootsy feel and
 fashion and always retained a sense of          Feast Of Fiddles compadre Tom Leary again            an introspective, soul-searching lyrical bent.
 humour that metal often lacks. It’s the         with Kevin Dempsey on guitar and vocals.             ‘Nashville’ is his fifth album in a career
 classic line-up of the band too: Joey                      TUESDAY 19th                              spanning ten years, but the first to be
 Belladonna, Frank Bello, Charlie Benante,                                                            recorded outside of his native city, having
                                                 JAZZ CLUB with THE TOM GREY
 Scott Ian and Danny Spitz, and it’s gonna                                                            briefly relocated to Spain after the break up
                                                 QUINTET: The Bullingdon
 rock. Like a bastard.                                                                                of his marriage. Unsurprisingly that break
                                                 DELICIOUS MUSIC OPEN MIC
                                                                                                      has infected the new songs. They’re simpler,
                                                 SESSION: The Old School House
                                                                                                      more countrified than those that made its
                                                 OPEN MIC SESSION: The Exeter Hall,
                                                                                                      2003 predecessor, the critically-acclaimed
from Holiday Stabbings.                          Cowley
                                                                                                      ‘1972’, such a hit. Dig deeper into Rouse’s
DOGS: The Zodiac – Indie rock from Dogs,         CHIARINA: Café Rouge
                                                                                                      career and you’ll find nods to British indie
recent support to The Ravonettes.                       WEDNESDAY 20th                                music, Philly soul and even hippy-period
R’N’B & REGGAE NIGHT: The Bullingdon
                                                 COROFIN & FRIENDS: The Exeter Hall,                  Van Morrison. What it boils down to is a
NBS: The Red Lion, Witney
                                                 Cowley                                               sweet-sounding collection of languid,
THE DANCETTES + LEGENDARY + THE
                                                 20/20 VISION + THE CLIFFHANGERS +                    melodic, melancholy acoustic country pop
DIRTY EARTH BAND: City Farm,
                                                 HARLETTE + SARGE’S MUM + LOST                        that probably sounds best when played
Eynsham
                                                 GENERATIONS: The Vibe, Didcot – Under-               around an intimate campfire setting but
ROLLERCOASTER Vs CHICKS WITH
                                                 18s gig with metallers 20/20 Visions headlining.     deserves a wider audience.
DECKS: The Cellar – Indie, 80s, post-punk
                                                 CATWEAZLE CLUB: Northgate Hall
and electro-pop club night.
                                                 PHONIK SETIONS: The Cellar
                                                                 THURSDAY 21st
                                                             SPIN JAZZ CLUB with
                                                             CURIOUS PARADISE: The
                                                             Wheatsheaf
                                                             ANDENSUM: The Exeter Hall,
                                                             Cowley – Complex proggy
                                                             hardcore in a Tool kind of vein from
                                                             the young local rockers.
                                                             DELICIOUS MUSIC JAZZ AND
                                                             BLUES SESSION: Far From
                                                             The Madding Crowd
                                                             THE WITCHES + THE
                                                             CLIFFHANGERS: The Cellar –
                                                             Former Eeebleee frontman Dave
                                                             returns with his new band, while
                                                      ELECTRIC JAM: The Exeter Hall, Cowley                   ACOUSTIC NIGHT: The Victoria, Jericho
                                                      (5pm)                                                   OXFORD FOLK CLUB OPEN NIGHT: The
                                                      INTERN: The Bullingdon – Band showcase                  Port Mahon
                                                      night.                                                  BACKROOM BOOGIE: The Bullingdon
                                                      SOUL IN DIDCOT: Edmonds Park, Didcot                    INDEFINITELY: The Red Lion, Witney
                                                      (2pm) – A day of Christian rock and pop.                BOSSAPHONIK: The Cellar – With live
                                                      BURN: The Black Horse, Kidlington                       music from 10-piece funk act Tonic.
                                                                   MONDAY 25th                                THE UNDERDOGS Vs SLIDE: Studio
                                                                                                              Lounge, Westgate
                                                      CONNIE LUSH AND BLUES SHOUTER:
                                                      The Bullingdon – Winner of the best British                      SATURDAY 30th
                                                      female blues singer award for five years and            DUCKFEST: Ducklington Village – The
  Saturday 30th                                       best female vocalist in Europe for the last two,        second Duckfest, in aid of RESTORE, featuring
                                                      the Monday blues night welcomes back one of             an assortment of local luminaries in the sedate
  DUCKFEST:                                           its regular star attractions.                           setting of Ducklington village - see main
                                                      SALSANEROS: The Cellar                                  preview
  Ducklington
  Duckfest organisers don’t actually get any                      TUESDAY 26th                                GRAVENHURST + THE EVENINGS + THE
                                                                                                              THUMB QUINTET: The Wheatsheaf –
  more specific about the location of this one-       JAZZ CLUB with THE TOM GREY
                                                                                                              Sweet, sad songs and murder ballads from the
  day mini-festival in aid of RESTORE, but            QUINTET: The Bullingdon
                                                                                                              pen of Bristol’s Nick Talbot – see main
  then Ducklington – just outside of Witney –         DELICIOUS MUSIC OPEN MIC
                                                                                                              preview.
  is pretty compact so it shouldn’t be too            SESSION: The Old School House
                                                                                                              TOUNSI: The Exeter Hall, Cowley
  hard to find it. You could probably just drive      REVENGE OF THE CORNDOLLY with
                                                                                                              MOFO: The Red Lion, Witney
  to the village, wind your window down and           KING FURNACE + SHADOW MACHINE:
  follow the sound of guitars being mangled in        The Cellar – Chili Peppers-influenced funky                         SUNDAY 31st
  the name of charity. This year’s line-up is         rock from King Furnace.                                 FRESH OUT OF THE BOX: The Cellar
  topped by the mighty Dive Dive, now                 OPEN MIC SESSION: The Exeter Hall,                      THE CHAPEL: The Bullingdon - Local bands
  honed into the tightest musical fighting unit       Cowley                                                  showcase.
  in Oxford after countless jaunts around the         CHIARINA: Café Rouge
  nation’s toilet circuit. Joining them will be                WEDNESDAY 27th
  spangled guitar dreamers The Workhouse,             COROFIN & FRIENDS: The Exeter Hall,                      Saturday 30th
  all-action power-pop crew The Samurai               Cowley
  Seven, darkly-inclined new wavers The Half          GIGSWAP UK SHOWCASE: The
                                                                                                               GRAVENHURST /
  Rabbits, old school rap mob Big Speakers
  (pictured), gothic noiseniks Harry Angel,
                                                      Wheatsheaf
                                                      CATWEAZLE CLUB: Northgate Hall
                                                                                                               THE EVENINGS /
  fragile pop torch singer Richard Walters,
  inspired folk-pop siren Laima Bite and                         THURSDAY 28th                                 THUMB QUINTET:
  assorted other local talents. With Truck            DELICIOUS MUSIC JAZZ AND BLUES
                                                      SESSION: Far From The Madding Crowd
                                                                                                               The Wheatsheaf
  Festival now a national concern, selling out
                                                                                                               You want sad music? You got sad music!
  months in advance, the considerably smaller         WARHEN: The Cellar – Heavyweight indie
                                                                                                               Gravenhurst’s first visit to Oxford is a minor
  and even more homely Duckfest is already            rockers.
                                                                                                               cause for celebration, but it’ll be no party.
  being called ‘The New Truck’. Always room           SKYLARKIN: The Brickworks
                                                                                                               The Bristol band, centred around songwriter
  for more of these events. Make a day of it.         SABOTAGE: The Zodiac
                                                                                                               Nick Talbot, find themselves in the strange
                                                                    FRIDAY 29th                                and wonderful position of being signed to
INACUN: The Exeter Hall, Cowley                       GAPPY TOOTH INDUSTRIES with THE                          Warp Records, despite making some of the
LIVE BANDS NIGHT: The Bullingdon –                    DRUG SQUAD + NAILBOMB CULTS +                            least danceable music possible. Instead
Acts to be announced.                                 MICHAEL BERK: The Zodiac – Party-                        they’re a less-is-more neo-folk band in the
SUPERNATURAL: The Red Lion, Witney                    friendly ska-punk, pub rock and spaghetti                vein of Low and Red House Painters, but
                                                      western themes from headliners The Drug                  equally inspired by Slint and Joy Division.
             SUNDAY 24th                              Squad at tonight’s GTI night. Support from               So yes, jolly hockey sticks from start to
TRUCK FESTIVAL: Hill Farm Steventon                   local gabba techno misfits Nailbomb Cults.               finish. The band’s most recent album, ‘Black
(from 11am) – Day two of the festival with            HEDROOM: The Exeter Hall, Cowley –                       Holes In The Sand’, finds Gravenhurst lost
Magic Numbers rounding proceedings off in a           Funky rap-rock from the hard-gigging Thame               in a lysergic fog of gentle despair, covering
dreamy 60s style – see main preview feature.          crew.                                                    Husker Du’s haunting murder ballad ‘Diane’
                                                                                                               in suitably bleak style but buoyed by some
                                                                                                               seriously lovely folky melodies. Excellent
                                                                                                               local support at tonight’s Oxfordbands.com
Nightshift listings are free. Deadline for inclusion in the gig guide is the 20th of each month - no           night comes from retro-futurist synth
exceptions. Call 01865 372255 (10am-6pm) or email listings to Nightshift@oxfordmusic.net. This                 manglers The Evenings, plus ambient
gig guide is copyright of Nightshift Magazine and may not be reproduced without permission.                    electro-folk from The Thumb Quintet.
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                   VENUE PHONE NUMBERS
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  The Zodiac: 01865 420042                            The New Theatre: 0870 606 3500
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  Point Promotions: 07711 628021                      The Black Horse: 01865 373154
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  The Bullingdon: 01865 244516                        Nettlebed Folk Club: 01628 636620
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  The Wheatsheaf: 01865 721156                        The Port Mahon: 01865 202067
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  The Exeter Hall: 01865 776431                       Delicious Music: 07876 184623
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  The Red Lion, Witney: 01993 703149                  The Victoria: 01865 554047
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  The Cellar: 01865 244761                            Brookes: 01865 484750
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                                                                                                                                                                     Photo: Richard Hounslow (07761 682297)
    LIVE
THE MAGIC BAND / THE E BAND
The Zodiac
Black shades, white noise, Krautrock rhythms, muttered monologues,
dislocating samples - the E Band are a Neu! for now, a short-haired
Hawkwind for tomorrow. Watch this (inner) space.
 The Magic Band are... The Magic Band. For now and always. Their former
leader Captain Beefheart is out painting the desert, but these guys are still
bringing the desert to a town near you. ‘When It Blows Its Stacks’ and
‘Floppy Boot Stomp’ whip in like a hot Mojave wind, as a man in a
crumpled hat patrols the stage, gesticulating and growling his way through
tales of strange and disturbing forces on the prowl. This is Magic Band
original John “Drumbo” French, and he does a spooky impersonation of the
Captain on vocals and mouth-harp, while bringing his own wired energies
and mannerisms to the hoodoo hoedown. The guitars of Gary Lucas and
Denny Walley lock together to create a clanking, humming composite of
avant-blues slide and supernatural twang, underpinned by the juddering drums        touching tribute to John Peel. Finishing with a monumental triumvirate of
of Michael Traylor and the loping bass of Rockette Morton. Mr French                ‘Moonlight on Vermont’, ‘Big-Eyed Beans From Venus’ and ‘Mirror Man’,
takes his place behind the drumkit for a swathe of instrumentals, and the           The Magic Band then stroll out to meet the audience, nice as (hair) pie. I
sound moves from skewed gutbucket blues to something more abstract -                am reminded of when I last saw these songs performed live, aged 16, and am
which still retains its “rusty clockwork toy” feel, as if about to trip over, but   proud to get the guys’ autographs. The Captain may have retired, but his
always lands triumphantly on its syncopated feet. Then it’s back to the             music lives on... long may The Magic Band continue to booglarise us.
front for Drumbo, and a fizzing version of ‘Electricity’, prefaced by a             Harry Lime



DEVILS GUN                                             JOANOVARC /                                           THE RAKES / CAZALS
The Zodiac                                             HARLETTE                                              The Zodiac,
In the midnight hour and suitably monged,                                                                    Having attracted favourable mutterings in the
tonight’s crowd is ready to make the floor
                                                       The Wheatsheaf                                        praise-happy national music press, tonight’s gig
bounce. London’s Devils Gun, up for their second       It’s unfortunate but true, that all-girl bands        seems likely to be either a chance to catch The
ever gig, look set to help them. A gangling afro-ed    (particularly all-girl rock bands) are still          Rakes in such intimate surroundings before they
MC, born to mob-orate, like a lovechild of Bob         considered as something of an oddity. They are        really take off, or another crash and burn case.
Marley and Phil Lynott; a riffing guitarist; two       always held up for inspection to see if they can       First however, are Mod revivalists Cazals. With
producer/ FX samplers and a percussionist              play as well as their male counterparts. Is their     stabbing staccato guitar sounds, their rapid-fire set
working mostly on toms, make up a cabal bent on        songwriting as good? Is their lead singer a fox? A    quickly emerges from the muddy mix that plagues
audio-sedition. At first they blaze away well with     lot of female bands face the kind of questions that   the opening couple of songs. Their ragged, yet
everything, including the kitchen sink. An             shouldn’t and don’t matter before anyone              melodic sound is emphasised by a vocalist who, as
industrial ‘Addicted To Love’ beat is given broad      actually starts to take any notice of their music.    the set progresses, moves from sounding like Paul
brushstrokes of Prodigy-lite rap, Art of Noise-        Harlette won’t suffer from these problems,            Weller with a sore throat to Joe Strummer after
style breaks and Kool And The Gang samples, like       however. They may be young, but somehow they          swallowing a bag of gravel. In terms of sound and
a Fire House remix of Dreadzone’s ‘Little              can remember when Riot Grrl was a major force         songs, they’re not too far behind The
Britain’. Its promise outweighs its lack of            in contemporary music. There’s plenty of              Futureheads, yet the set never really catch on
definition, but definition is what it desperately      distorted guitars, screeched vocals (‘Sometimes       with the crowd. Be it a largely static stage
needs. Three tracks in and the great party             She Pisses Me Off’ is a particular highlight) and     presence or a failure to interact, their set fails to
atmosphere Fresh Out Of The Box had                    frantic drumming that brings to mind Babes In         provide the dancefloor call to arms offered
engendered is flatlining, and hectoring the crowd      Toyland. Singer Iona brims with a brattish            elsewhere in an already overcrowded genre.
to “Come on, get down” is not the answer.              confidence that brings to mind Molly Ringwald in       Mobilising the crowd doesn’t pose any problem
 When we want it to bang it doesn’t bang way           The Breakfast Club, if The Breakfast Club had         once The Rakes get settled into their set,
hard enough. The tom-toms are no substitute for        been soundtracked by Huggy Bear, and not Simple       however. While much of the press surrounding the
a four-to-the-floor, wall-cracking bass, and when      Minds. Their confidence speaks for itself.            band has thrown them in with this generation’s
we want phasing, walking-through-water, electro-        JoanovArc are from a different era entirely. Not     batch of Joy Division acolytes, on the strength of
synth breaks it has all the emotional depth of a       the 14th Century thankfully, but from a time when     tonight’s set the length seems a touch dubious.
puddle. Things get a whole lot better when they        the likes of the Runaways and Girlschool were at      While frontman Alan Donohoe plays the
bring on Kelly, a six-foot tall Zoë-from-              their prime. Joanovarc evidently never really left    eccentric card, with the jerky stage moves and
Eastenders lookalike, to perform double MC             the New Wave of British Heavy Metal behind,           darting eyes, he comes across less Curtis-crazy
vocals and her kicking cover of The White              because tonight is a lesson in how to rock. Gone is   more a poor man’s David Byrne. However, not
Stripes’ ‘Blue Orchid’ is a major league treat.        the garage punk of the Suffrajets (sisters Shelley    sounding exactly like Joy Division isn’t
 Devil’s Gun eventually come home winners with         and Sam Walker were both members) replaced by         something to be ashamed of. Instead their short,
their own ‘London’s Calling’, one of the best club     the metallic sheen of Queen, and Guns‘n’Roses.        sharp songs are more guitar heavy, with their
anthems I’ve heard in a while and one I expect to      Their cover of Hendrix’s `Purple Haze’ is inspired    brand of post-punk at times cheekier than it is
hot-wire their success. It has the crucial mix of      rather than tedious; Shelley Walker’s solo would      dark. Yet for The Rakes the proof is most
house, electro and synth-rock in and if the band       make Jimi himself blush. They may not be              certainly in the pudding and their set, mostly of
were seriously doing their homework, careful note      playing the most fashionable of music but they        material from their ‘Automatic’ album, clearly
of the crowd’s overboard reaction to that track        play well, and with passion. Just for a moment,       goes down well with a very vocal Oxford fanbase,
alone should have them writing six more like it        they make rocking out like a hoary old biker          already enough attached to the band to
post haste.                                            seem like a possible life change.                     passionately plead for their favourite songs.
Paul Carrera                                           Allin Pratt                                           Patrick Casey
                 DR SHOTOVER
                 Royal Variety Bollocks
The Caesars. Kaiser
Chiefs. Kings of Leon.
What is it with these
young whippersnappers
and their regal aspirations?
Personally, I blame...
myself. Since I set up
NobSearch UK three years
ago with “Tuppy” Ware                                                                        July
and some of the other
chaps, all these ghastly
minor pop celebrities want                                                Every Monday:
to up their scores on the                                                 THE FAMOUS MONDAY
Blue-Blood-o-meter... as if
Queen weren’t bad enough                                                  NIGHT BLUES
in the first place, with                                                  The best in UK, European and US blues. 8-12. £6
their vulgar pretensions to
being “rock royalty”...                                                   4th THE PAUL COX BAND (UK)
What’s that you say?                                                      11th THE WILDCATS (UK)
Double meaning? Ah, that                                                  18th THE AYNSLEY LISTER BAND (UK)
sort of “Queen”. He’d
have been drummed out of                                                  25th CONNIE LUSH & BLUES SHOUTER
                                           Merle Oberon impersonates
the regiment in my day...                                  Dr Shotover    (UK)
well, yes, of course we knew
it went on... the C.O. would generally turn a blind eye, as long as the
getting vamped up in wigs and cocktail dresses was confined to            Every Tuesday:
musical numbers at the Christmas Concert. One year I did a rather         THE OXFORD JAZZ CLUB
fetching impersonation of Merle Oberon meself, I seem to remember...
Same again? Make mine a Campari and soda.                                 Free live jazz from THE TOM GREY
                    Next month: Progressive Frock.                        QUINTET, plus DJs playing r’n’b, funk and
                                                                          soul until 2am.
                                                                          (Except Tuesday 5th – Jazz Club with ROGER
                                                                          INNES)

                                                                          Every Friday:
                                                                          BACKROOM BOOGIE
                                                                          Funk, soul and R&B. 9-2am Free B4 10pm;
                                                                          £4 after.

                                                                          Every Sunday:
                                                                          THE CHAPEL
                                                                          LOCAL BANDS SHOWCASE. 8-11pm. £3

                                                                          Plus

                                                                          Saturday 2nd SIMPLE – Quality Funky
                                                                          House. 9-2am
                                                                          Wednesday 6th STAND UP COMEDY with
                                                                          compere SILKY 8.30-12am. £6.50
                                                                          Saturday 9th To Be Announced 9-2am
                                                                          Saturday 16th REGGAE AND R’n’B NIGHT
                                                                          9-2am
                                                                          Saturday 23rd LIVE BANDS NIGHT – Acts
                                                                          to be confirmed
                                                                          Saturday 30th LIVE BANDS NIGHT with
                                                                          INTERN plus support
                                            MONDO GENERATOR /
Mondo Generator photo: Becky Perry




                                     LIVE   SEXTODECIMO / DEGUELLO
                                            The Zodiac
                                            This is exactly what you need at the end of a bank holiday weekend – a deep
                                            soul cleansing. Bank holiday torpor means we arrive too late to catch
                                            Winnebago Deal’s metal side project Spine Christ, but we’ll catch up with the
                                            two Bens later when they play with Nick Oliveri’s Mondo Generator.
                                             Before that there’s Deguello, one of the best teenage bands on the scene.
                                            Since we last saw them they’ve come on massively, from fuzzy garage punk
                                            beginnings to their current state where they mix up rabid New Wave melodies
                                            with passages of virulent, explorative noise. A serious blast of hot, fresh air,
                                            but just a warm-up for what follows…
                                             “We’re Sextodecimo and this isn’t going to be very pleasant”, announce
                                            Sextodecimo, moments before the jaws of hell open amid a blizzard of strobes.
                                            Putting a lie to their old stoner/sludgecore reputation, tonight they’re
                                            singularly brutal. They’re even more of a cacophony than last time we
                                            encountered them; although they’ve opened up a bit musically and visually,
                                            there’s no compromise. This goes way beyond metal. Time slows to a crawl
                                            and the air becomes thick with the pressure of it all. It sounds like warfare, it’s
                                            bleak and cruel and it feels absolutely magnificent.
                                             That Ben Perrier and Ben Thomas have been recruited into Mondo
                                            Generator shows the level they’ve reached, and tonight it proves beyond
                                            doubt just what incredible musicians they are. Nick Oliveri was born to be a
                                            rock star. He looks like a gothic backwoods serial killer and he’s playing
                                            breakneck backwoods rock and roll. The two Bens presence has lifted the
                                            experience from last time’s disappointing show. They just don’t let up. Walls
                                            of slasher guitar fuzz coat punishing velocity punk songs. Occasional slower
                                            songs piledrive like bulldozers, while a sprawling blues number morphs into
                                            hair metal thrash partway through. There’s even a moment when it all sounds
                                            like Slade. Or at least Slade if they’d just returned from the abyss. It’s
                                            punishing, but varied enough to keep the show interesting, and we get a clutch
                                            of old Queens Of The Stone-Age songs into the bargain. Years of gig going
                                            means we rarely get a ringing in our ears any more. Tonight our ears are
                                            ringing. Tomorrow we have to return to work. Fuck that, we want to fight!
                                            Ian Chesterton
LOU BARLOW
The Zodiac
Lou Barlow, member of Dinosaur Jr,               and fragile in its softness, and his self-
Sebadoh and The Folk Implosion,                  deprecating humour in between songs only
announces that he is nervous. The reason         seems to endear him all the more to the
behind his anxiety is, he explains, that         audience. The occasional vintage Sebadoh
tonight is the first time he has played in       track, such as ‘Freed Pig’ and ‘On Fire’, are
front of an English speaking audience in         all received with rapturous applause, and
some time, and thus he will be unable to         Barlow’s attempt to leave the stage at the
pretend that any heckles are, in fact, cheers    end of his touching performance of ‘Brand
of admiration. He needn’t worry, however,        New Love’ is vehemently opposed.
as those here tonight are totally enthralled      Barlow’s songs are portraits of striking
with him from the offset. With songs such        intimacy, while his chatter is so friendly and
as ‘Legendary’, in which bittersweet             unassuming that those watching him feel a
sentiments are cloaked in melancholic and        sense of involvement in the performance.
haunting guitar melodies, Barlow holds the       He opens his heart to the audience tonight,
crowd gently in the palm of his hand. He is      and is accepted with open arms.
gifted with a voice that is both comforting      Emma Short



HELP SHE CAN’T SWIM / CASSETTE FOR
CASSETTE / GO! TEAM! GO!
The Wheatsheaf
Welcome to another unbearably hot night at       band that really give it their all and make a
the Wheatsheaf, but London three piece           tremendous noise with little regard for their
Go! Team! Go! seem not the slightest bit         own safety. Which I guess makes them a
daunted by this. Throwing themselves             fully-formed version of Go! Team! Go! You
around the stage with abandon, what they         can see the early Sonic Youth and riot grrl
lack tune-wise they make up for in energy.       influences in the band, but most of all they
It’s shouty, jerky, disjointed and infectious.   resemble a beefed-up Bis, kinda cutesy but
 Cassette For Cassette provide the calm in       with extra guitars kicking the songs off in
the eye of the storm tonight. Unfortunately      different directions. The band works best
it’s a little too peaceful for a band that       when Leesey and Tom are both singing,
threatens to let rip like the early Hole         sparring off each other and creating endless
recordings did, but the promise is never         kinetic energy that infuses the songs with
fulfilled. The problem is there’s no real        vitality. To further the Bis comparison
dynamics in the band; they promise menace        Leesey has a very Manda Rin style voice,
without there being a threatening bone in        one which fey indie kids will adore. Their
their bodies.                                    music attracts the shy outsider and for this
 It takes a while but eventually Help She        reason alone I wish more power to them.
Can’t Swim win me over. It’s great to see a      Russell Barker



BIG SPEAKERS / FLOODED HALLWAYS /                                                                  DELICIOUS
                                                                                                       ENTERTAINMENT
CAPSKY
The Cellar                                                                                               Live Music in July
Opening tonight’s Oxfordbands.com relaunch       seven-strong personnel and equipment into
                                                                                                        Every Tuesday - OPEN MIC SESSION
gig, showcasing some of the city’s best hip      the Cellar. The instrumentation blends a wide    The Old School House, Gloucester Green 8.30-11.15 Free!
hop acts, is Capsky, whose staccato lyrical      range of styles - hip hop, soul, jazz, funk           Every Thursday - LIVE JAZZ & BLUES
patterning is layered over the guitar of         and even ska - by way of synth, guitar, bass,    Far From the Madding Crowd, Friars Entry 8.30-11 Free!
partner Greasy Red and their interesting,        scratching and sample sounds, while MCs             Alternate Wednesdays - OPEN MIC SESSION
glitchy electronic Aim-like backing. The         Tomohawk and Soulface’s aggressive               Far From the Madding Crowd, Friars Entry 8.30-11 Free!
contrast works well, but the vocals may be       Gravediggaz / Wu Tang Clan-like vocals both      For bookings/info- Tel: 07876 184623 / 01865 242784
suited to something less mellow, and the         meld nicely and contrast sharply with the
backing would sound good enough on its own,      more laid-back Fragger and soulful, yet
in an Ulrich Schnauss kind of way. It’s all a    underused AJ. Always tight despite their size,
little unpolished and the delivery could be      tracks like “Overpaid Slave” and
more confident, but promising nonetheless.       “Apocolypse Rising” are catchy, though still
 Flooded Hallways are similar in composition     have heartfelt and provocative lyrics.
but differ in style; their looped samples         It would be a shame to deny a larger audience
become quite wearing after a while and they      the intimacy and immediacy of Big Speakers
sometimes stray into Streets territory, but      experiences like tonight’s, but their
tracks like ‘After All’ and ‘Formulae’ show      conviction, and how much they care about
off clever rhymes and rhythms. The two           the music and their message, will be palpable
rappers’ voices work play off each other         however large the audience is. It’s such a        ROCK-POP-DANCE-GOLDEN OLDIES-INDIE-
dynamically, but the whole thing would work      delight and so refreshing to come across an      SOUL-TECHNO-HIP-HOP-JAZZ-LATIN-REGGAE-
better with fewer monotonous loops.              act not frightened to mix genres, be              DRUM&BASS-GARAGE—R&B-DISCO-1950s-
 Even though they’re an MC down tonight,         outspoken and experiment.                         2000s. Brand new back catalogue CDs £4 - £7
Big Speakers still barely squeeze their          Kisten Etheridge                                      each. Brand new chart CDs £5 - £10 each
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   Ladytron’s bound-to-be-brilliant set.               Friday – so get there early to cheer them on.          Futureheads, The Kills and Sons and Daughters.
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   copiously and dance embarrassingly throughout       who’ll be opening proceedings at Reading on the        The Subways, Babyshambles, Arcade Fire,
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                                                       and – oh yes – Oxford’s very own Fell City Girl,       from Black Rebel Motorcycle Club, Fightstar,
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   litter tray. The editor’s decision is to drink
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                                                       Saul Williams, The Raveonettes, Sleater Kinney         Tears and Bloc Party, along with appearances
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   Multiple entries will be used to line the cat’s
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                                                       be joined by, amongst others, Charlotte Hatherly,
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   entries is the 20th of July. No email entries.                                                             you’ll find headline sets from Kasabian, The
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                                                       enduring legends Echo & The Bunnymen. They’ll
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   312, Kidlington, OX5 1ZU. Deadline for                                                                      But wander up to the NME Radio 1 Stage and
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   Festivals Competition, Nightshift, PO Box           Ladytron, plus the fantastic Go! Team and              Iggy Pop and the Stooges. A feast of fiery fun.
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   Carling Weekend: Reading and Leeds                  will be Nightshift’s favouritest band in the world,    Turbonegro and of course the very excellent
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   Just send your answers on a postcard to: The        kept secrets on the scene. Among those this year       Roots Manuva, NoFX, Funeral For a Friend,
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                                                       catch up on some of the best rising stars and best     Manson, The Coral, Elbow, The Charlatans,
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       monster?                                        Festivals is The Carling Stage, where you can          Stone Age, Kings of Leon, Razorlight, Marilyn
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       What is the name of Iron Maiden’s pet           whole Carling Weekend: Reading and Leeds               find the likes of The Killers, Queens of the
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                                                        Of course one of our favourite bits about the          On the main stage over the weekend you’ll
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  question:                                            iceberg.                                               other festival site on a different day).
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   All you have to do is answer the following          And that’s just the tip of that particular pop         festival (with each day’s bill appearing at the
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  pair on us for free!                                                                                        various stages over the three days of each
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  them for love nor money, but you can have a                                                                 literally hundreds of live acts spread across
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  Reading Festival. That’s right, you can’t buy                                                               there’s loads and loads and loads more. Quite
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  weekend tickets for the Carling Weekend:                                                                    metal legends Iron Maiden. And of course
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  Hall or Nothing press, we’ve got a pair of                                                                  (pictured), grunge giants The Foo Fighters and
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  people at The Mean Fiddler, and our friends at                                                              from godlike pop pioneers The Pixies
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   But here’s the good news: thanks to those nice                                                             Sunday 28th August sees headline appearances
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  www.leedsfestival.com more for details.                                                                     Leeds Festivals, which runs from Friday 26th to
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  or go to www.readingfestival.com or                                                                          This year’s Carling Weekend: Reading and
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  available from See Tickets on 0870 060 3775                                                                 Reading and Leeds Festivals.
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  the Leeds site, priced £60 (plus booking fee)                                                               bigger or fatter than The Carling Weekend:
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   There are some day tickets still available for                                                             rock festivals, then they don’t come much
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  bill like that?                                                                                             life. And of course if we’re talking about big, fat
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  SOLD OUT. Well, what do you expect with a                                                                   which are the very foundations of a truly happy
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  Except that the whole event is completely                                                                   massive tents! With beer! And sunshine! All of
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  Oxford so there’s even more reason to go.                                                                   great bands! In big fields! And sometimes
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   Of course Reading is just down the road from                                                               festivals! Hurray! Cos festivals means loads of
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  How can you possibly not have a good time?                                                                  Hurray! It’s summer! And summer means
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                                                     THE CARLING WEEKEND: READING FESTIVAL!
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                                                                WIN TICKETS FOR
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Stuart Fowkes                           punk rock anthems of all time, so
MOTHERF-                                for penning one of the greatest
shout ‘KICK OUT THE JAMS                all, three of the men responsible
word count resisting the urge to         Hang on, though. These are, after
then. And I’ve got through my           watchword of the evening.
from the jaws of listless karaoke,      satisfaction could be the
A triumphant tribute snatched           and for a while it looks as if self-
climax.                                 precociously smug in its delivery,
their exhilarating collaborative        ‘Ramblin’ Rose’ is almost
exploration that leads them onto        inspired reformations. Opener
discover the sense of freedom and       financially-, rather than creatively-
group start to kick loose and           this is just another in a long line of
eventually matched when the             intensity, suggesting that perhaps
enthusiasm is infectious, and is        band’s legendary urgency and
series of mercurial solos. His          set, and not exactly a surfeit of the
of the ensemble, leading off with a     on offer at the beginning of MC5’s
 It’s Kramer who’s the focal point       There’s precious little revolution
coming off worst.                       territory.
Brother Wayne Kramer without            minute starship ride into uncharted
capable of trading solos with           line-up, encoring with a twenty-
Clarke is one of the few guitarists     you’ve got a pretty surreal all-star
decent job on vocals, while Gilby       appearance from Julian Cope and
Handsome Dick Manitoba does a           the evening). Throw in a surprise
 One-time Dictators frontman            wonderful opening set earlier in
songs.                                  Case For Treatment (who played a
Fred Smith, and of some amazing         Roses and our very own Suitable
of the legacy of Rob Tyner and          MC5, Gilby Clarke from Guns ‘N’
irresistible sense of celebration –     freeform improv set featuring
ultimately wins through is an           memorable this year than a
let’s give ‘em a chance. What           There will be few sights more
                                                       The Zodiac
                                                                                                                                                                     Photo:Richard Hounslow
                                                       DKT/MC5
                      ELIOT                                                                                          Exeter Hall Pub
                      The Cellar                                                                                          Corner Cowley / Marsh Road
                      How refreshing. Not the Cellar, mind, on a      Maria sings in a softly unassuming                        01865 776431
                      balmy evening, but Eliot, a pop trio           manner, pleasantly careless, while Jim                  www.thex.co.uk
                      consisting of Jim Eliot, ex-Oxford student     creates complex arrangements with fine
                      and now London-based producer, and             electronic melodies. Only occasionally do         THE BEST FREE MUSIC
                      local pop folkstress Maria Ilett. Their        we stray into bland, background dinner
                      chillout grooves, funky keyboards and          party blah, with the likes of ‘Fade’. But           VENUE IN TOWN!
                      samples are being backed up with a live        all is made up for by the astounding            Every Tuesday - Open Mic - all welcome. 8pm
                                                                     ‘Shine’. Pure pop genius, which they save       Every Wednesday - Irish Folk Session. 8.30pm
                      drummer. It’s clear he is an essential part
                      of this threesome even if he has listened to   until last. The backing track consists of                          JULY
                      ‘Mezzanine’ too many times. Maria              jangly, Smiths-like guitars and Maria’s         Fri 1st Leburn 8:30pm
                      sometimes struggles to be heard over the       confidence is booming. She sways back           Sat 2nd Fresh Faces For The Modern Age - CD
                      punching rhythm, but without him we’d          and forth and there’s nothing shy about         Launch Phyal/Junkie Brush/Verbal Kink/Harry
                      be heading into karaoke territory.             her now.                                        Angel/The Process 7:00 pm
                                                                      I like Eliot, but Eliot seem to be a little    Thu 7th Valium 8:30pm
                      Thankfully that is far from the sound
                                                                                                                     Sat 9th The Treat 8:30pm
                      tonight. As Jim twiddles knobs, Maria          unsure of their footing, not quite sure
                                                                                                                     Sun 10th Electric Jam 5:00pm come and join in!
                      coyly sings, giving the likes of Jem, Zero 7   which road to take. Whether it be down          Thu 14th Kohoutek 8:30pm
                      and Dubstar a run for their money. She         the Dubstar or Dido route (and with a set       Fri 15th Porter Boys 8:30pm
                      seems to relax more the further they get       of songs as good as ‘Shine’, they wouldn’t      Sat 16th Phyal 8:30pm
                      through their set. A quick switch on ‘Front    go wrong) or a more chilled-out, down           Sun 17th Ben Duggard & Lee Davies 8:30pm
                      Room’ leaves Jim singing (not unlike Matt      tempo direction like Massive Attack,            Thu 21st Andensum + Rising Dragon 8:30pm
                      Hales from Aqualung) and Maria on bass         Bent, Abraham or Zero 7, which they             Fri 22nd Transmission 8:30pm Free
                                                                     pull off equally well. It’s a road trip I       Sat 23rd Inacun 8:30pm Free
                      and backing vocals. This keeps the
                                                                                                                     Sun 24th Electric Jam 5:00pm Come and join
                      audience on their toes and means songs         can’t wait to see progress.
                                                                                                                     in!
                      take on different shapes.                      Katy Jerome                                     Fri 29th Hedroom 8:30pm
                                                                                                                     Sat 30th Tounsi 8:30pm


                      SKA CUBANO
                      The Zodiac
                      Skylarkin’ Soundsystems has been               the band. Not one person is left unmoved;
                      growing in popularity at a rapid rate          it’s the most complete reaction I’ve ever
                      recently. Taking their regular nights to the   seen to a band at the Zodiac. The call and           5K
                      Zodiac stage with Reggae legend DJ Derek       response of `Ay Caramba’ is a delight, as       32
                      has served to cement their reputation          is their reworking of ‘Jezebel’. Every song
                      further. The next step is this, moving into    is a gem and Ska Cubano continue on their
                      the live arena, and they couldn’t have got     mission to tear the roof off of the place.
                      it more right. Eleven-piece London /           Only a fool or a hardened cynic could fail
                      Cuban party merchants Ska Cubano hit           to have a good time here tonight. Ska
                      the stage running and for the next two         Cubano are about as close to a perfect live
                      hours there is absolutely no let up. Their     band as you could hope to find. By the
                      fusion of ska, and rocksteady with the         end of a thoroughly exhausting but
                      Latin Cuban influence is spot on. It’s a       entirely enjoyable two hours, DJ Derek
                      thoroughly dirty mix, and one that forces      takes to the stage as he needs to tell us all
                      you to dance with a rum spiked grin on         something. “I’ve seen just about everyone
                      your face.                                     in the world of ska,” he drawls in that
                       Singers Natty Bo and Beny Billy focus         peculiar Bristol-cum-Trenchtown patois
                      the attention brilliantly, always moving,      of his, “and you’ve just seen the best
                      continually whipping the crowd up until        performance I’ve ever seen.” It’s been a
                      the whole place is jumping. By the time        legendary night in every sense of the
                      ‘Revolutionary Ska’ makes an appearance,       word.
                      the audience is under complete control of      Allin Pratt
Photo: Sam Shepherd
                                              DEMOS
                                               Demo of the month wins a day’s free recording at Ursa Audio. For
                                                  special deals for local bands, call Ursa on 01865 242055.

                                               DEMO OF  DELINQUENT
                                                        This fella’s not lacking in self-confidence:
   www.appletreestudio.co.uk                  THE MONTH “I am an aspiring songwriter, performer
                                                        and producer creating exciting alternative
                                                                                            music”, chirrups Rob Greenaway about his
                                                                                            radical idea of mixing up traditional
                                              JABERWOK                                      acoustic instrumentation with exciting new
                                              Recorded live, this three-track demo gives a electronic gadgetry and samples. You know,
                                              better impression of Jaberwok than they       like Beck did about ten years ago.
                                              would probably have got through hours         Sometimes it works okay, the loops and
                                              spent on studio overdubs. It captures the     grooves and occasional vocal samples
                                              band’s fluid, funky feel, jamming out on      weaving together into a passable tapestry
                                              extended Hammond, bass and guitar             of sound, but Rob’s own vocals can’t hold
                                              journeys, trying to evoke the spirits of      up in such company, moping innocuously
                                              Stevie Wonder, Isaac Hayes and JTQ. Here around the Moby-ish backdrops.
                                              on CD you perhaps don’t quite get the         Essentially it’s pretty basic 60s folk-pop
                                              feeling that you would at a gig where         with a bit of a synthetic overhaul, and
                                              Jaberwok’s onstage energy can react with      while even here it can work alright – as on
                                              that of an audience, but the wah-wah          the Byrds-y `Chemicals’, the whole project
                                              guitar-heavy ‘Spiewak’, with its wobbly       is bogged down by its pedestrian pace
                                              bass lines, or ‘Chicken Song’ with its dirty which never looks likely to drags itself out
Strong singer / front                         keyboard sound and arpeggiating bass carry of its self-made rut.
                                              a convincing 70s vibe. ‘It Ain’t Ting’,
                                              meanwhile is pure cocktail lounge retro
person required                               jazz-funk, content to wander any which
                                              way as you sip on your vodka martini. Ah,
                                                                                           CASSETTE FOR
for established oxford based gigging and      now there’s an idea. Maybe not the most      CASSETTE
                                              original demo we’ve heard, but performed Just think, there will very soon be an entire
recording band. Must have drive and           with gusto and anything that makes us         generation of music fans who will have no
enthusiasm and a musical bent for inventive   think about vodka martinis has to be good. idea what a cassette is. Mind you, there is
                                                                                            already an entire generation who have no
cerebral rock with extra poppy goodness.
                                                                                            idea whatsoever who Young Marble Giants
                                                                                            were. But they should, because they were
Email spreston@headington.org                                                               great, and Cassette For Cassette sound a
                                              FORMALDEHYDE                                  tiny bit like them at times, which is always
                                              Ah bless, here’s a Didcot band apparently to be encouraged. Here is tinpot, minimalist
                                              looking for “the ultimate break”. And while indie noise that sounds like it’s held
                                              it’s tempting to suggest sticking their necks together by willpower and sticky tape
                                              in a noose and jumping from the nearest       alone. Vocalist Emma sounds fabulously
                                              bridge, they don’t deserve such treatment, bored and angsty, the almost desolate sense
                                              although we should perhaps warn the           of melancholy and spindly arrangements
                                              young hopefuls that the ultimate break        recalling Cat Power at her most maudlin.
                                              simply doesn’t exist: it’s all sweat, tears   ‘Quiet, Too Quiet’ has a children’s music
                                              and bloody hard work and even if you do       box simplicity and if you pinched its pale,
                                              ever make it big in the cruel world of rock   skinny arm it’d doubtless squeal like a
                                              and roll, you’ll be far too busy playing      rabbit, but it’s bolstered by some edgy,
                                              endless gigs in godforsaken eastern           almost toy town keyboards and the whole
                                              European towns and enduring soul-sapping ramshackle affair smells pleasantly of the
                                              interviews with regional radio DJs to notice true spirit of indie music past.
                                              that this is where you always wanted to
                                              end up. So there, simple dreams viciously
                                              punctured, all that’s left for us to say is  REDOX
                                              that Formaldehyde sound extremely cross. Individually and together Redox have been
                                              If you cut them up at a junction they’d       around the local scene seemingly forever,
                                              probably shout at you so long and so loud including in their ranks, as they do, Klub
                                              your head would fall off. This sounds like Kakofanney stalwarts Phil Freizinger and
                                              Liam Gallagher in a bad mood trying to        Sue Smith. As such, we’re unlikely to find
                                              keep up with Oasis’ new hair metal            them chasing the latest musical trend, and
                                              direction. Which isn’t such a terrible thing nor would we want to. Not when there are
                                              all things considered, although the           odd guilty pleasures to be had like
                                              vocalist’s idea of shouting the same          ‘Bullaburra’, a barn-dance hoe-down
                                              couple of lines over and over again in the    topped off with Gong-like space-shrieking
                                              vague hope they might take on some kind       vocals, a touch of skiffle and a barely-
                                              of spiritual significance doesn’t work        suppressed silly side. It’s like an ungodly
                                              very well. Keep the dream alive, kids.        mix up of 70s drug-addled Glastonbury
indulgence, a children’s TV advertising           serious stuff: aggressive post-hardcore
nightmare and Lonnie Donegan. ‘Blood’ is a        rocking with a metallic sharpness, not
more saddle-weary cowboy jaunt with a             unlike Dive Dive at times. That ill-advised
tendency to go off on a jazz-rock wander          rap (which really amounts to little more
halfway through but it’s ‘Free’ that              than talking in an awkward manner)
ultimately scares us away: a dubbier,             detracts from an otherwise effective stab at
mystical skank with lyrics about dancing          the harder edge of emo, and while the whole
on beaches, being free and getting tender         thing feels like it may have arrived just a
and squeezy under a solstice moon. A bit          little too late to catch the emo bandwagon,
too much like Ozric Tentacles doing a             it’s confident and slickly-constructed stuff
crusty, tie-dyed remake of ‘Je T’aime’.           and hopefully has enough character of its
You’ll excuse us if we pass on that idea.         own to push on from here.


PHYAL                                             LOOPY
Phyal seem to have been around forever,           Another band of local circuit stalwarts
such is the regular flow of demos from
them and their insatiable local gigging
                                                  who’ve always managed to produce
                                                  something likeable without ever quite
                                                                                                    THE COURTYARD STUDIO
                                                                                                      OTARI MTR90 MK11, 24 TRACK TAPE
appetite, but they only formed in 2002. In        setting the local scene on fire, Loopy return
that time they’ve gone from being a               with more cheery summer-sounding pop,              MACHINE & MTA 980, 32/24/24 CONSOLE,
rudimentary but fun punk band with slight         part-way between The Monkees and The               SOUNDSCAPE DIGITAL EDITOR, SUPERB
metal undertones to a full-blooded metal          Beautiful South. ‘This Sound’ is jolly           CONTROL ROOM WITH GOOD SELECTION OF
beast with a slightly punky edge. Big             power pop with a distinct 60s feel, while        OUTBOARD GEAR, MIDI FACILITIES INCLUDE
rolling punk chords thunder along apace,          best track on the demo, ‘Too Late’, is                LOGIC AUDIO, 8 MEG S1000, etc
gutsy and bombastic without being fancy,          frothy in an early-Beatles kind of way and
allowing singer Glenda Huish to exercise          full of bah, bah, bah backing vocals. Bit of a      RESIDENTIAL FACILITIES OPTIONAL
her not inconsiderable lung capacity.             shame then about the strained, almost
Brassy and bluesy she plays the metal             pained acoustic lament, ‘Living The
queen part well, although we always seem          Adventure’, although ‘Blue Cortina’, with             Phone KATE or PIPPA for details
to end up describing her as strident. But         its chirpy keyboard bounce and bubblegum                     on 01235 845800
then she is, in an almost operatic kind of        harmonies, just about manages to rise above
way, which is probably what gives Phyal           its grumbling indie dirge roots and shows a
their 1980s feel, the way they seem to so         keenness to expand on simple ideas.
unashamedly over the top. Anyway, where
once they sounded very much like Vice
Squad, now Girlschool and even L7 seem
like more appropriate reference points, but          THE DEMO
for all their lack of subtlety, there’s
something heroically rumbustious about                DUMPER
Phyal.
                                                  TREV WILLIAMS
GESSO                                       Trev made his demo debut here a few
Sometimes you wonder whether band are       months back with an expansive,
really just having a laugh at your expense, inconsistent but sometimes inventive
or if not, what possessed them to do what   offering. This time he’s compressed it all
                                            into four tracks and attained some kind of
they do. That feeling goes, initially at least,
for Gesso, who sound like a kind of joke    consistency of sound, although perhaps not
version of The Divine Comedy: a             of the kind we’d have liked. The lounge
rudimentary piano-led pop stomp topped      jazz-funk of ‘Seaside’, with its softly
off with some incongruous, faux-operatic    chugging FM rock guitars is a bad enough
vocals. The only person we’ve ever heard    start but it’s all downhill from there. The
sing like this who can get away with it is  monstrously cheesy ‘I Love You’ is a
Nick Cave on ‘Release The Bats’. Here it    lifeless piano ballad that somehow manages
sounds ridiculous, but then you start       to fuse Savage Garden, Toploader and the
                                            very worst bits of Elton John into a grim
feeling a strange sense of admiration for the
band for maybe trying to do something a     four minutes, while ‘Don’t Let Me Go’ is
bit OTT. And they use a harpsichord on      Crowded House’s ‘Always Take The
one song, and anything with a harpsichord   Weather With You’ rendered as lame as a
                                            pig in a minefield. And so we reach the
on is alright in our book. Still, really rather
silly all things considered.                grand finale, ‘Slow Down’, which aside
                                            from ironically urging us to slow down
                                            even though it seems to have taken us
DON SMOOTH                                  several years to get here, goes on to
Nothing silly about Don Smooth of course. reassure us that everything will work out
Well, apart from the name, which sounds     fine. Except it hasn’t, has it Trev? You’re in
like a character from Miami Vice. Oh, and   the Demo Dumper and things are going to
the atrocious attempt at rapping from the   get a whole lot worse for you just as soon
lead singer on second track here, ‘Decadent as we detonate the lethal plague spore
Honey’. But, apart from all that, this is   bomb we hid behind your radiator earlier.


Send demos for review to: Nightshift, PO Box 312, Kidlington, Oxford, OX5 1ZU.
 IMPORTANT: no review without a contact address and phone number (no email or mobile-
only). No more than four tracks on a demo. If you can’t handle criticism, please don’t send us
your demo. Aw heck, you’re not taking the slightest bit of notice of this are you?

				
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