email: email@example.com website: nightshift.oxfordmusic.net Free every NIGHTSHIFT month. Issue 121 August Oxford’s Music Magazine 2005 Fell City Girl On the fast track to rock and roll glory Photo: Julian Small NIGHTSHIFT: PO Box 312, Kidlington, OX5 1ZU. Phone: 01865 372255 NEW S Nightshift: PO Box 312, Kidlington, OX5 1ZU Phone: 01865 372255 email: firstname.lastname@example.org This month’s issue is dedicated to Albini the Nightshift cat SUPERGRASS play an intimate Ian Parker Band, Michael Myers, show at the Oxford Playhouse this The Invisible and Blue Wax. Music month (Saturday 13th August) as part starts at 7pm. On the Saturday, of a short national tour. The tour is Sunday and Monday, proceedings aimed at promoting new album, kick off at 2pm, with a broad ‘The Road To Rouen’, which marks a change of musical direction for the selection of rock, folk, jazz, blues and acoustic acts, including Leburn, AUGUST band. Kohoutek, Anton Barbeau, Uniting Talking about the tour, singer Gaz the Elements, Sarah Wilson, Laima Every Monday: Coombes said, “It’s gonna be Bite, The Cheesegraters, Tounsi and interesting using these little theatres The Powders. A cheap and extremely THE FAMOUS MONDAY NIGHT BLUES and clubs to show people another cheerful alternative to Reading The best in UK, European and US blues. 8-12. £6 musical side of the band. It’s not Festival. Call 01865 776431 for something we’ve really done before more details. 1st DIANA BRAITHWAITE (USA) in this way, so we’re excited about it. 8th SHARRIE WILLIAMS & THE WISE We’ll have an old friend playing GOOD AND BAD NEWS for folks percussion alongside Danny and his music fans in Oxford this month. GUYS (USA) homemade drum kit, new songs and The bad news is that both Nettlebed 15th DAVID RAPHAEL BLUES BAND (UK) a few old ones that we’ve not tried Folk Club and Oxford Folk Club are 22nd CREAM’D (UK) - a tribute to Cream! before, and a little stage set to give closed throughout August, with both it a real close, mellow, theatrical clubs set to resume live music early 29th To Be Confirmed vibe.” in September. The good news is that Tickets for the show are on sale both Cropredy Festival and now from the Playhouse box office, Towersey Village Festival take place Every Tuesday: on 01865 305305. ‘Road to Rouen’ this month, with strong folk line- THE OXFORD JAZZ CLUB is released on 15th August. ups. Fairport Convention’s Cropredy Festival takes place from Thursday Free live jazz from THE TOM GREY CHARLOTTE CHURCH, Lucie 11th – Saturday 13th August, with QUINTET, plus DJs playing r’n’b, funk and Silvas, The Noise Next Door, Richard Thompson, Country Joe soul until 2am. Chesney Hawkes, Freefaller, Tyler McDonald, Beth Nielsen Chapman James and KT Tunstall are the latest and Jah Wobble amongst the acts (* - except Tuesday 23rd – Jazz Club with acts to be added to the bill for Fox joining the Englidsh folk legends on ALVIN ROY) FM’s Party In The park, which stage. For ticket information, go to takes places in South Park on www.fairportconvention.com. This Sunday 28th August. They join year’s Towersey Festival, meanwhile, Every Friday: headliners Texas, announced last runs from Thursday 25th to Monday month. Tickets for Party In The 29th August. Show Of Hands, John BACKROOM BOOGIE park are available online through McHerry’s At First Light and Karine Funk, soul and R&B. 9-2am Free B4 10pm; £4 after. Fox FM’s website (foxfm.com), Polwart head an extensive bill of priced £10, with £1 from each ticket folk, blues and world music. Tickets going to Help A Local Child. for the five-day festival are available Every Sunday: from the box office on 01629 THE CHAPEL THE DOWNLOAD has been 827016. granted an extra month’s run on LOCAL BANDS SHOWCASE. 8-11pm. £3 BBC Radio Oxford. The local music ELIZA CARTHY AND THE show will now run until the end of RATCATCHERS, The Oyster Band August, with BBC programmers and John Spiers and Jon Boden are Plus pleased with the show’s coverage of among the acts confirmed for this Wednesday 3rd STAND UP COMEDY with the local music scene and its strong year’s Wallingford Bunkfest. The compere SILKY 8.30-12am listening figures. The Download is festival, now in its fourth year, runs broadcast every Saturday evening across the weekend of the 2nd to the Saturday 6th SIMPLE – Quality Funky House. from 6-7pm on 95.2fm. The show is 4th September at various venues 9-2am presented by Tim Bearder and as around Wallingford. As well as live well as playing an assortment of music there will be the usual array of Thursday 11th HIP HOP NIGHT 9-2am local releases, features interviews celidhs, workshops and a beer Saturday 13th NU-SOUL with TONY with local and touring bands, a gig festival. More details at and club listing and a demo vote. www.bunkfest.co.uk. NANTON 9-2am Keep listening and help keep Oxford Wednesday 17th PSYCHIC NIGHT (call for music on the radio. DUE TO STRICT PRINT details) DEADLINES, Nightshift went to THE EXETER HALL in Cowley is press before Truck Festival. Our Thursday 18th LIVE BANDS NIGHT 8-12am hosting a four-day free live music review of the festival will appear in Saturday 20th ROADRUNNER (Mod, Northern festival over the August Bank the September issue. The `Truck 8’ Holiday Weekend. The festival will compilation CD, featuring tracks Soul, Funky Hammond and more) 9-2am feature some 30 acts, most of whom from the likes of Black Nielson, Saturday 27th REGGAE AND R’n’B NIGHT have played at the Ex in the past Captive State, Cranes, Fell City Girl, year. Things kick off on the evening Neil Halstead, The Black Madonnas 9-2am of Friday 26th, with sets from The and Biffy Clyro, is on sale now. A Quiet Word With Fell City Girl AND THIS YEAR’S OXFORD representatives at Reading and Leeds there any particular barriers you’ve come across as a student band? festivals will be… Fell City Girl. Phil: “No not really. It’s an ongoing That’s right, Fell City Girl, the band debate but the attendance at gigs by formed barely two years ago by a students is shitty, compared to the group of mates studying at Brookes 1,200 people that pack into University, still unsigned, and last Brookes’ venue every Wednesday for seen in Oxford supporting Dive Dive their club nights. But what can you at the Zodiac. Fell City Girl, a band do? It’s not really anyone’s fault, who have come a long, long way in a more a collective mindset that very short space of time and look cheaper drinks are more important set to go even further in the very than live music now.” near future. Shrek: “It’s a shame that there is such a high quality of live music SINCE THEY HIT THE LOCAL being played in Oxford every night gig scene just under two years ago, of the week by so many talented Fell City Girl have deservedly earned bands and solo artists, yet so many themselves a reputation as one of students and people in Oxford are the most promising young bands disregarding it for club anthems and around, playing to increasingly wonder Nightshift was excited the band ahead of their appearance drinks promos. A buzzing music packed local venues like the enough to hail them as the best new at Truck Festival and a short tour to scene like the one that is occurring Wheatsheaf and the Cellar, while band to emerge from Oxford in promote the release of ‘Weaker in Oxford at the moment is such a their show at this year’s Oxford Punt 2004. Light’. rare and beautiful thing that in May saw the venue sold out within everyone in Oxford should minutes of doors opening and a FELL CITY GIRL’S FORMATION FELL CITY GIRL ARE A BAND appreciate it more.” queue of disappointed fans out into was nothing special: a bunch of who formed at university but they Are you all planning to stick around the street below. This month Fell mates rehearsing together in a room don’t see themselves as a university Oxford when your courses are City Girl release their second single, at a Brookes University halls of band, having early on suffered from finished? ‘Weaker Light’, on Nomadic residence, getting threatened with the musical snobbery that can exist Phil: “Yes, it’s a great place to be. Records, the follow-up to last year’s eviction of they didn’t keep the in academic circles. Especially in Summer. There’s split CD with Swindon-based rockers noise down, eventually ditching the Phil: “The first rehearsal we had nowhere like it – every lady is Latitude Blue. ‘Freebird’-obsessed guitarist, before was at Brookes music department. beautiful. If I was a singer in a band The new single, a limited edition 7”, settling on the current line-up (Phil We’d borrowed their drum kit, but I’d be unstoppable…” displays so much of what is great McMinn: vocals and guitar; Joe it’d been double booked. So in walks Shrek: “As a band we have been about Fell City Girl: a short, sharp Gibbons: guitars; Adam Drake: the head of the jazz quartet or really welcomed into Oxford and its hit of emotionally-intense melodic bass; James ‘Shrek’ Pamphlion: whatever the fuck they were, and music scene and we’ve made so rock that’s alternately sweet, tender drums) and taking their formative said “I’m sorry, you’re not real many friends as a result…and there and slightly fraught, or sky- sound out into the Oxford scene. music students so we take priority”, are so many more debauched nights scrapingly epic. Comparisons to Rave reviews quickly followed – not so we had to give them the kit and to be had, it would be just plain rude early Radiohead aren’t far off the just from Nightshift but also the pack our gear up after five minutes. to leave now.” mark, but freshness and vitality likes of Drowned In Sound, and soon Having said that, the music societies Joe: “I’m here for life I reckon; I pours from the song, while live Fell the record, publishing and are run by really good people so it’s love the place. Now, if I could only City Girl have a presence, management companies started not all bad. I’m just bitter at not stop the wheels on my bike getting confidence and epic sense of musical buzzing around. being a real music student, I guess…” kicked in every other week…” scale that stretches from Jeff With the various members either Joe: “I joined the band a few Phil, you said before that the likes Buckley, through Muse and The Cure graduating or deferring their degrees months after the others had started of Truck were partly instrumental in to the more esoteric likes of to concentrate on the band, things playing together and although I was you choosing to come and study in Godspeed You! Black Emperor. No have really picked up speed lately, just about to start a course at Oxford. What is your impression of culminating Brookes I joined the band Oxford now and how much has it in that completely independent of the changed in the time you’ve lived invitation university. I actually met them here? to play on through an advert on the Nightshift Phil: “It’s a really divided place – the Carling messageboard, so you guys are partly there’s the horror of Cowley Centre Stage at to blame for all this racket! I don’t right through to the centre of town Reading and want to put Brookes down at all which is pretty beautiful. In terms of Leeds because I’ve met some cool people being in a band, it’s a great place to Festivals – there, it’s just that for me college develop because you can get the launch and band life are pretty much recognised just by playing a handful pad for so unrelated.” of gigs. There may only be a handful many bands There is still some prejudice from of really great bands locally, but in recent both sides of the supposed town/ there is so much going on – the guys times. gown divide in the local music scene. at OxfordBands run a great night, as Nightshift How well integrated do you think does Ady at Vacuous Pop. You can go spoke to students are into the local scene? Are to The Wheatsheaf three times a week and see a good band most of particular their sound seems too big the time. I’ve only been in Oxford a for the size of venues they’re few years so it hasn’t really changed currently playing. Is there a that much, apart from those fucking conscious desire to create big music? roadworks on the Cowley Road. Phil: “It’s funny, when we started it Honestly, someone’s going to get was never meant to be like that, but hurt by me if they don’t stop soon.” when people start reviewing you and saying things like that, you do start FELL CITY GIRL FORMED A changing the way you write. And you couple of years ago but became local start trying to see if you can favourites very quickly. How and actually ‘do’ epic. When we played why do they think that happened? The Scala in January, friends of mine Phil: “I think we’re not really in a in the audience heard a couple of position to know why this happened people take the piss out of us when the way it did. But my guess is that we walked on – we have tiny amps we do something a bit more and a tiny singer, and within 30 accessible than a lot of the Oxford seconds I’m told they were bouncing bands at the moment. There is up and down on the spot going “OH nothing exclusive about the music we MY FUCKING GOD!” So I made up make, yet I think it still has an edge for my disability. All those years of to it that separates us from the abuse finally paid off, he he!” Tesco’s buying public. Also we’re all Joe: “The truth is that we’re all incredibly handsome, which helps.” egomaniacs and are just trying to Tell us about the new single and the ‘out-loud’ each other! No, I think record label. individually we all try to maximise Phil: “Last summer we were kind of the impact each of our instruments torn between who to go with for can have sonically, but at the same management and the guys we had to time always placing most say no to have since set up a little importance on how the song works label called Nomadic Music, and so as a whole; I don’t think any of us we figured we wanted to work with are great fans of self-indulgent wig them on it because they gave a shit outs. Almost despite ourselves the about us. It’s coming out on 7”, songs just always seem to get bigger limited to 1000 hand-numbered and bigger the more we play them; copies and the first 100 will each over-excitedness at what everyone have a unique little item in them else is coming up with just takes that we’ve been collecting over the over sometimes!” last year, so no copy will be the Having come so far so quickly, and same. It’s a cliché but it’s a little with their continued rise seemingly thank you to people in Oxford.” guaranteed in the immediate future, You’re playing at the Reading and where do Fell City Girl realistically Leeds Festivals. How did that come see themselves a year from now? about and how do you feel about it? Phil: “Anywhere but the office I Phil: “I got a phone call from our work in. It’s so hard to know what’s management telling us about it on going to happen, or whether this all the day I’d graduated from goes away tomorrow. There have university. I’d been drinking for nine been so many ‘could have been’ hours straight and when I woke up bands in Oxford and that makes me the next day I had to ring him to very wary of getting ahead of check if it was actually true. We’re ourselves. Hype is a wonderful thing feeling pretty good about it right isn’t it? We’re going to carry on now to be honest, it still seems like a with what we’re doing and get really long way off but to be given such a good live. And of course if they ask platform is an incredible opportunity us to open the Olympic Ceremony for us to take the next step. in 2012, we’ll hopefully be Hopefully we’ll be camping next to available…” the Foo Fighters’ tent - maybe we Such sentiments sound slightly can borrow Dave Grohl’s tin opener. familiar. When we first interviewed a A lot of excellent Dave Grohl young local band called On A Friday impressions are knocking around our some 14 years ago that same house at the moment.” ambition and determination shone Joe: “Reading was my first festival through. Something tells us we’ve experience as a kid so I’m personally only just started to see the real a little awe-struck to be playing potential of Fell City Girl. This year there now, with all these ‘proper’ first on on the Carling Stage; next bands. I was there last year and spent year, festival headliners? Don’t bet quite a lot of time at the new bands against it. tent; if you’d have told me then that we’d be playing there this year I’d ‘Weaker Light’ is released on have fallen headlong into the mud August 8th on Nomadic Records. and kebab trays. And to cap it all, Fell City Girl play at the we’re playing Leeds on my birthday. Wheatsheaf on Saturday 20th The best present ever!” August, plus the Carling Stage at Reading Festival (Fri 26th) and ‘EPIC’ AND ‘STADIUM-SIZED’ Leeds Festival (Sat 27th). Check are descriptions commonly used in out www.fellcitygirl.co.uk for reviews of Fell City Girl; live in more news and gig dates. RELEASED Sponsored by SUPERGRASS REDOX ‘Road To Rouen’ ‘Bullaburra’ (Parlophone) (Own Label) There comes a time in every band’s life when Redox’s debut album lands on the doormat the they have to grow up, musically at least (The same day Glastonbury is almost washed into Ramones being the exception that proves the the sea by torrential storms. Appropriate rule). And so that time comes with Supergrass really, since they’re exactly the sort of band and this, their fifth studio album. you might expect to stumble across while a Of course even back in the days of ‘I Should little worse for wear at 3 in the morning, in Coco’ Gaz, Danny and Mickey (before Bob some forgotten corner of the Green Field. joined) weren’t averse to the odd moment of Formed by Phil Freizinger and Sue Smith, the sober contemplation, but ‘Road To Rouen’ goes couple behind Klub Kakofanney and veterans, the whole hog, dispensing almost entirely with we suspect, of a great many festivals and the chipper glam-stomping punk-pop of the magic mushroom trips over the years, Redox past twelve years. It’s not an acoustic album, pack in all the ingredients of a lost-in-space- but it is resolutely mellow. The band have head-rushes fewer and further between. The and-time hippy band: from Phil’s playful flute incorporated such exotic instruments as ukulele comfortably numb feeling is amplified by the excursions on ‘Love Is There’, to Sue’s and zither, as well as brass and string parts; stretched-out, almost rambling feel of the album unearthly Mother Gong-like whooping and there are brief detours into polka and which defies its compact 35 minute running shrieking on the album’s title track; from the psychedelic folk but the basic format remains time. At its best ‘Road To Rouen’ sounds like cod-reggae grooves of ‘Free’ to the world funk confidently laid-back guitar and piano-led pop. rhythms that underpin much of the album, the soundtrack to a cult road movie, set in a and a good few wistful guitar solos besides. There are traces of Supergrass’ affection for mythical 1970s Mid-West. At others, it sounds As such the album can be either gently mid-70s Bowie still kicking about, notably on like a band at a crossroads, unsure quite where uplifting in an uncaringly summery way, or the album’s title track, while The Faces and Led their new-found maturity should lead them. nail-bitingly spiritual in a pagan earth mother Zeppelin make fleeting visits. Album opener So, a minor indulgence, a stop-gap or a mid-life manner. Certainly the lyrical content of songs ‘Tales Of Endurance’ moves from an idle jam crisis? ‘Road To Rouen’ is probably a bit of all like ‘Blood’ and ‘Free’ tend toward the latter, into a breezy Stone Roses lullaby, while ‘Sad of these and none of them completely. Whether and only the most stoned of 70s throwbacks Girl’ steals wholesale from ‘I Am the Walrus’, it represents the permanent new face of could endure the loose jam session that is and there is a warm, fuzzy lysergic fug hanging Supergrass or not, only time will tell. Either ‘Feeling’s Right’, but Redox can then hit you over the whole album. Super-strength skunk has way, it’s a grower, so pull up an armchair and with a cracker like ‘Bullabura itself: part barn long been the band’s recreational drug of choice, roll yourself a fat one. dance hoedown, part ska skank, part space but now the smoke clouds are even thicker, the Sue Foreman rock ritual with a nagging chorus that’s utterly infectious. A crazy little pop song; here’s where the party should really begin. NERVOUS_TESTPILOT Redox’s most endearing feature is their unselfconscious retro vibe and shameless ‘Determinance’ pillaging of every style and period of music to suit their holistic view – from Canned Heat to (Freedom Road) Ozric Tentacles via a Jamaican beach party. Paul Taylor, aka Nervous_testpilot, has been years, notably his near-legendary sets at Truck Just remember to pack a little mind-altering one of the most consistently compelling live Festival. His full-on electro assault, coupled something for moral support. dance acts in Oxford over the last couple of with a mischievous smash’n’grab approach to Sue Foreman sampling makes for an irresistible spectacle even in the middle of the afternoon. This debut release is a forty-minute EP featuring five tracks from the sci-fi swordplay video game ‘Determinance’. Such soundtracking suits Nervous_testpilot perfectly: his busy, uncluttered brand of techno – not far off Eat Static or Banco De Gaia’s uplifting brand of trance – compliments the adrenaline rush of slice-em-up action, but works equally well as dancefloor filler. There’s a cool metallic sheen to the synthetics and a relentlessly bubbling rhythmic pulse; Goan trance by any other name, a winner whatever you call it. Terry Molloy 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 CHINESE VARIOUS ARTISTS FINGERTRAP ‘Fresh Faces For The ‘Grim Fandango’ Modern Age’ (Own Label) (Rivet Gun) “Chinese Fingertrap do not fit in”, exclaims the Ah me, another month, another local bands accompanying press release to this six-song compilation. A combination of a flourishing debut CD from a metal band who’ve been a local live music scene and ever-cheaper CD regular part of the supporting cast at The Club recording means these things are becoming That Cannot Be Named over the past few almost gratuitous. The recent ‘4 x EPs’ on years. Such a statement is noble in its Hanging Out With The Cool Kids Records set a excitability from a young band, but perhaps new benchmark of quality for such things, betrays a little self-delusion from Chinese displaying the sonic firepower of Sextodecimo, Fingertrap regarding their musical ambition. Holiday Stabbings, Gunnbunny and Deguello. On the face of it they fit in perfectly with so ‘Fresh Faces For The Modern Age’ aims for a many other bands filling the spaces between similar target, showcasing five new Oxford although their form of heaviosity benefits from venue doors opening and the main attraction. noise bands: The Process, Phyal, Harry Angel, a slightly more cultured approach, especially on They’ve got energy to spare: each song speeds Verbal Kink and Junkie Brush, the band who ‘Death Valley Of the Dolls’, wherein in a by in a flurry of frantic, rolling powerchords have compiled the album. nascent Sonic Youth get a bit of a gothabilly that blur the lines between early-80s metal, It’s Junkie Brush themselves who come over working over, although ‘Striptease’ is too in thrash and emo, while the vocals switch neatly best with a vigorous shaking of the punk tree, thrall to Radiohead to hold its own in such between melodic and screaming. There are notably on the frantic, scouring ‘Problem – company. Phyal, meanwhile, continue to tread exactly 27,926 bands in the UK alone who are Reaction – Solution’, which carries all the zeal the line between 80s power metal and third- doing exactly the same thing at this precise and anger you’d hope to find in young men full generation punk with a ballsy self confidence, moment. Probably in a garage down your road. of testosterone and faced with an unfair world. though as such they do sound like a band from That’s not to damn Chinese Fingertrap By contrast, Verbal Kink sound like they’re just another generation completely. outright. The songs might be rather formulaic having a good moan about not earning enough As with most of these compilations ‘Fresh and barely distinguishable from one another but money on ‘Tramazapan Alcohol Suntan’, and Faces…’ succeeds in its face value purpose of the energy expended is admirable, songs are coming on like a lightweight Queens Of The giving local music fans a budget opportunity to brief and explosive and a strong, full-blooded Stone-Age. hear new stuff they might not otherwise have production breathes extra life into the track, The Process are the most straightforward metal gone out of their way to see, while the bands giving them an almost live feel. Perhaps Chinese band on show, backing alternately hectoring and involved get exposure to fans of similarly- Fingertrap’s best hope for future success is bellowing vocals with solid waves of thrash minded acts. Beyond that, the bar is set so high playing on the fact that they fit in so riffage on tracks like ‘Proud To Be Me’. Harry now for such things that it needs something completely. Angel sound like the only band here who’d spectacular to really shine. Ian Chesterton prefer to pick up a book than pick a fight, Dale Kattack the port mahon Live Music in August 1st - Girl - solo rock & pop 2nd - Music Quiz with Dave Finnon 3rd - Oxford Improvisers 4th - The Dharma 6th - The Black Madonnas - new Truck Records signings 9th - Music Quiz with Dave Finnon 20th - John Otway 27th - Sneaky The Port Mahon, Under New Management. All new sound equipment in the music room installed by PMT. Book your band into play now for August and September at Oxford’s best small music venue! 82 St Clements, Oxford. Tel: 01865 202067 gig guide HARRY ANGEL + THE CORVIDS + MONDAY 1st DIANA BRAITHWAITE: The Bullingdon – Dymanic Delta blues and spiritual blues and soul from Toronto singer Braithwaite, who has sung AUGUST REBECCA MOSLEY + ALLY CRAIG: The Exeter Hall, Cowley – Good mixed bill of local talent tonight at the Ex with Radiohead-meets- Misfits rockers Harry Angel headlining. Spindly with the likes of John Lee Hooker, Albert Collins hardcore and krautrock from The Corvids and and Jeff Healey CHIARINA: Café Rouge – Weekly acoustic promising acoustic pop from Rebecca Mosley. YETI: The Zodiac – Former-Libertines bassist pop, folk and jazz residency. SIMPLE: The Bullingdon – Funky house. John Hassall returns with his new early-Beatles- style rock and roll inspired band. WEDNESDAY 3rd AFTER HOURS: The Red Lion, Witney IRISH FOLK SESSION: The Exeter Hall, ROLLERCOASTER Vs CHICKS WITH GIRL: The Port Mahon – Local soul and folk- Cowley DECKS: The Cellar – New Wave, electro, 80s influenced singer makes her live return. GIGSWAP UK NIGHT: The Wheatsheaf trash and more. CLUB HAVANA: Po Na Na –Weekly dose of Salsa, Latin dance, bossanova and Brazilian jazz. DELICIOUS MUSIC OPEN MIC SESSION: SUNDAY 7th Far from The Madding Crowd ELECTRIC JAM: The Exeter Hall, Cowley – TUESDAY 2nd THURSDAY 4th Jam along with the in-house rhythm section. All JAZZ CLUB with THE TOM GREY QUINTET: THE DHARMA: The Port Mahon – Hazy hippy musicians welcome. The Bullingdon folk-funksters. DELICIOUS MUSIC OPEN MIC SESSION: OXFORD IMPROVISORS: The Port Mahon DELICIOUS MUSIC JAZZ, FOLK AND The Old School House OPEN MIC SESSION: The Exeter Hall, Cowley BLUES BANDS NIGHT: Far From The LIFE AND SOUL: The Black Horse, Madding Crowd – With local Hendrix-inspired Kidlington Thursday 11th – Saturday 13th guitarist Ella Reid. MONDAY 8th CAJITA + RICHARD WALTERS + LAIMA CROPREDY BITE + DREW ATKINS: The Cellar – A Night SHARRI WILLIAMS & THE WISE GUYS: The Bullingdon – Live blues. of mellow pop pleasures, with possibly the two FESTIVAL best singers in Oxford on the same bill – Richard CLUB HAVANA: Po Na Na After worries that last year’s Cropredy Walters and Laima Bite. Go see them. TUESDAY 9th Festival might be the last one, due to the OVERLOAD: Atlantic Bar – Celebrating five JAZZ CLUB with THE TOM GREY QUINTET: marital split between chief organisers Chris years of Swan E’s Maximum Boost label, tonight’s The Bullingdon and Dave Pegg, it’s business as usual for features sets from Swan E himself, Dope Ammo OPEN MIC SESSION: The Exeter Hall, Fairport Convention’s annual get-together in and Gomez plus top-drawer MCing from Fearless Cowley north Oxfordshire. After 30 plus years, there and Exsman. CHIARINA: Café Rouge are few surprises left at Cropredy but it’s SKYLARKIN: The Brickworks – Weekly dose INTRUSION: The Cellar – Goth and industrial of ska, reggae, Latin dance, Afrobeat and more club night. still one of the most pleasant, laid-back and (relatively) clean festivals on the national with DJ Aidan Larkin and guests. WEDNESDAY 10th circuit. As ever Fairport themselves headline SABOTAGE: The Zodiac – Weekly club night IRISH FOLK SESSION: The Exeter Hall, the Saturday, joined by the usual array of playing the latest metal, hardcore and indie Cowley former members and guests and finishing the sounds with TCTCBN DJs. DELICIOUS MUSIC OPEN MIC SESSION: event off with the traditional rendition of OPEN MIC SESSION: The Half Moon Harcourt Arms, Nuneham Courtenay ZOO NA NA: Po Na Na – Weekly indie and THURSDAY 11th ‘Meet On The Ledge’. Over the three days electro mash up. there’ll be assorted folk, blues and rock acts CROPREDY FESTIVAL – First night of Fairport TOMOHAWK ACOUSTIC SPOTLIGHT: Turf performing, the most notable of which Convention’s annual folk and blues shindig, with Tavern should be Jah Wobble’s set on Thursday. headline set from Country Joe McDonald, plus Country Joe McDonald headlines the FRIDAY 5th Jah Wobble, Hilary James and more – see main Thursday night, while the evergreen Richard SUNNYVALE NOISE SUB-ELEMENT + THE preview. Thompson tops Friday’s bill. Other acts HALF RABBITS: The Zodiac – Make Poverty HIP HOP CLUB NIGHT: The Bullingdon worth catching include The Dylan Project, History fundraiser with local electro-rock terrorists Sunnyvale going up against New Wave The Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain, revivalists The Half Rabbits. Chris While and Julie Matthews and Beth STRAFE: The Exeter Hall, Cowley Nielsen. Cropredy always feels a bit like a ACOUSTIC NIGHT: The Victoria, Jericho festival lost in time, but it’s that which BACKROOM BOOGIE: The Bullingdon makes it such a pleasure to attend. The bar SLIDE: The Zodiac – Quality house club night. and the food is better than you’ll find at any FUSED: The Red Lion, Witney major rock festival and there’s little chance KUJO SOUNDS: Po Na Na – Weekly funk, of any scally scum robbing your tent. house, hip hop and r’n’b club night. SATURDAY 6th EVERY TIME I DIE + TWELVE TRIBES + A LIFE ONCE LOST: The Zodiac – Explosive triple bill of US hardcore, with Roadrunner signings Every Time I Die retruning to the Club That Cannot be Named to promote new album ‘Gutter Phenomenon’. Philidelphia’s fast-rising new stars A Life Once Lost open the show. THE BLACK MADONNAS: The Port Mahon – Bolshy garage rocking racket from the latest signings to Truck Records. Thompson is today’s headliner with support from THURSDAY 18th The Dylan Project, The Ukele Orchestra of Great ARCTIC MONKEYS: The Zodiac – Sheffield’s Briatin, Bob Fox, Chris While and Julie Matthews hot young pop pups – see main preview and more – see main preview LOCAL BANDS NIGHT: The Bullingdon – DELICIOUS MUSIC BANDS NIGHT with Bands to be announced. THE TURBULENCE + FORMLESS DELICIOUS MUSIC JAZZ, FOLK AND ABSORPTIONS + ELLA REID: Harcourt BLUES BANDS NIGHT: Far From The Arms, Nuneham Courtenay Madding Crowd – Featuring Los Hombres. BEAVER: The Red Lion, Witney KARN8 + MEET HER SISTER: The Cellar – ACOUSTIC NIGHT: The Victoria, Jericho Local bands night. BACKROOM BOOGIE: The Bullingdon SKYLARKIN: The Brickworks BOSSAPHONIK: The Cellar – With African SABOTAGE: The Zodiac dance band Root4MZ. OPEN MIC SESSION: The Half Moon KUJO SOUNDS: Po Na Na ZOO NA NA: Po Na Na SATURDAY 13th TOMOHAWK ACOUSTIC: Turf Tavern SUPERGRASS: Oxford Playhouse – Intimate FRIDAY 19th gig with the local legends plugging new album, KING FURNACE + DIATRIBE + LIZARDS: ‘Road To Ruin’ – see main preview. The Zodiac – Chili Peppers-influenced rocking CROPREDY FESTIVAL – Concluding day of the from King Furnance, plus local supports. folk extravaganza, including Fairport FUNKY HOUSE: The Zodiac – With DJ Danny Convention’s traditional three-hour headline set, Saturday 13th plus Richard Digance, The Hamsters and many Rose. THE BIG BOYS BLUES BAND: The Exeter SUPERGRASS: more – see main preview NATION: The New Theatre – The local pop Hall, Cowley – Long-time local blues favourites. ACOUSTIC NIGHT: The Victoria, Jericho Oxford Playhouse hopefuls play their biggest headline gig to date– see main preview Supergrass have been no strangers to Oxford in recent times, having played their home MY AWESOME COMPILATION: The Zodiac Saturday 13th – Leicester’s acrobatic Get Up Kids-influenced town four times now in the last couple of years, but this latest return should be a bit emo rockers return after recent tours with NATION: Hopesfall and Tsunami Bomb, set to release debut different, billed as it is as “an intimate album proper ‘Actions’ this month. The New Theatre evening” with the band. Which means that, ARCTIK WOLF: The Exeter Hall, Cowley – There’s something fantastically audacious while it won’t be a full acoustic jobby, it’ll Funky rock. about Nation’s gig at the 1,700-capacity be a far mellower affair than we’re used to. NU-SOUL with TONY NANTON: The New Theatre. The last local band to headline Part of a short stripped-down tour, Bullingdon the venue were Supergrass, and they’ve got ostensibly to show off their new musical ENDLESS GROOVE: The Cellar – Fortnightly four platinum albums under their belts and a direction, tonight’s show is an expansion of club night from Sir Bald Diddley, playing a wide global reputation. But then Nation have been Supergrass’ cosy acoustic interludes (sofas selection of classic ska, funk, r’n’b, rock’n’roll, working hard to reap such rewards. As well and all) that they started on their Latin and jazz tunes. as an endless succession of gigs around the `Supergrass Is Ten’ tour. With the new THE HOGGZ: The Red Lion, Witney county, away from the usual local band album, `Road To Rouen’, taking a sharp SUNDAY 14th venue circuit. On top of this the band have detour from the wide-eyed bump and grind DELICIOUS MUSIC OPEN MIC SESSION: regularly flown out to places like Bosnia to of its predecessors, we might be witnessing The Old School House play to British troops. Last year they a whole new era in the band’s career. Still, FUSED: The Black Horse, Kidlington released their debut album, ‘Today Is The we have enough faith in their often magical MONDAY 15th First Day’, a collection of stadium-friendly way with a cracking pop song to predict DAVID RAPHAEL BLUES BAND: The classic guitar-pop anthems and epic piano that they’re unlikely to be turning into Paul Bullingdon – Farnborough-based singer, harpist ballads in the vein of The Who, The Beatles Weller any time soon. and keyboard player playing laidback blues and and Robbie Williams. Tonight’s gig is a r’n’b. launch for their second full-length CD, Walk’ DELICIOUS MUSIC JAZZ, FOLK AND CLUB HAVANA: Po Na Na and follows a tour of local schools. There’s BLUES BANDS NIGHT: Far From The TUESDAY 16th almost an overdose of self-belief and Madding Crowd – Featuring local singer Girl. JAZZ CLUB with THE TOM GREY QUINTET: confidence about Nation, but then, hey, if WILSON + TINDERBOX + THE NEW The Bullingdon you don’t believe in yourself, who the hell MOON: The Cellar – Veteran local rockers OPEN MIC SESSION: The Exeter Hall, else is going to? Tonight’s extravaganza Wilson make a rare comeback appearance with Cowley probably won’t make or break the band, but support from jazz-inflected acousticpop types CHIARINA: Café Rouge if it goes well, it could be a pivotal moment The New Moon. WEDNESDAY 17th in their career trajectory. The very best of SKYLARKIN: The Brickworks British luck to them. CHARLOTTE HATHERLEY: The Zodiac – SABOTAGE: The Zodiac Ash’s perfectly put together bassist Charlotte OPEN MIC SESSION: The Half Moon continues to make a classy pop career for herself ZOO NA NA: Po Na Na in her own right, with debut outing, ‘Kim Wilde’, TOMOHAWK ACOUSTIC SPOTLIGHT: Turf becoming one of the fastest downloaded singles Tavern ever. Catchy, summery pop-punk and bubblegum FRIDAY 12th pop is the order of the day and greater success BLUEWAX + ROPETRICK + ACCIDENTALLY seems hers for the taking. INNOCENT: The Zodiac – Local bands THE CLIFFHANGERS + THE SCHLA LA showcase LA’S: The Wheatsheaf – Darkly glamorous SOURCE: The Zodiac – Monthly drum&bass gothic pop from The Cliffhangers, plus 60s club night with sets from Caution, Azonica, bubblegum garage pop from Piney Gir’s Schla La Stumasta, Access and Samas. La’s. ELECTRIC BOOGIEMEN: The Exeter Hall, IRISH FOLK SESSION: The Exeter Hall, Cowley Cowley CROPREDY FESTIVAL – First full day of folk DELICIOUS MUSIC OPEN MIC SESSION: action at Fairport’s annual festival. Richard Far from The Madding Crowd SLIDEWINDER: The Exeter Hall, Cowley DELICIOUS MUSIC JAZZ, FOLK AND THE WORRIED MEN: The Red Lion, Witney BLUES BANDS NIGHT: Far From The – This month they have mostly been worrying Madding Crowd – With guitarist Ella Reid. about the prevalence of horseflies in the HARRY ANGEL + JUNKIE BRUSH: The Kidlington area. Cellar – Gothic rockabilly and post-hardcore FRESH OUT OF THE BOX: The Cellar – noise from Harry Angel, plus ferocious but Breakbeats party style. melodic punk from Junkie Brush. SUNDAY 21st SKYLARKIN: The Brickworks SUNDAY STEAMER with SUITABLE CASE SABOTAGE: The Zodiac FOR TREATMENT + RICHARD WALTERS + OPEN MIC SESSION: The Half Moon SMILEX: A Boat, The Thames – Second of this ZOO NA NA: Po Na Na summer’s Thames boat parties, with warped blues- TOMOHAWK ACOUSTIC SPOTLIGHT: metal heavyweights SC4T taking to the water to Turf Tavern launch their new ‘Of Motes And Misdirections’ FRIDAY 26th album. Should startle the fish. Considerably more AUGUST BANK HOLIDAY FREE MUSIC mellow pop pleasures from Richard Walters, plus FESTIVAL: The Exeter Hall, Cowley (7pm) – action-packed glam-rocking from Smilex. Will Opening night of the Ex’s first free four-day live Lee Smilex end up in the river? Does the sun rise music festival. Tonight’s bill includes The Ian in the east? Parker Band, Michael Myers, The Invisible and ELECTRIC JAM: The Exeter Hall, Cowley Blue Wax. Thursday 18th DELICIOUS MUSIC OPEN MIC SESSION: GAPPY TOOTH INDUSTRIES presents The Old School House KOHOUTEK + ANTON BARBEAU + LUM ARCTIC MONKEYS: THE WORRIED MEN: The Black Horse, COL CON PIX: The Zodiac – Mixed bill as Kidlington ever from the GTI crew. Melodramatic acoustic The Zodiac MONDAY 22nd rock from Kohoutek, Dylan-inspired pop from “The New Libertines!” squeal the headlines, Sacramento’s Anton Barbeau, plus multi-deck CREAM’D: The Bullingdon – A tribute to but don’t let that put you off. Sheffield Cream, featuring guitarist Ray Minhinnett in improvisation from Evenings offshoot Lum Col teenage quartet Arctic Monkeys have Clapton’s lead role. Con Pix. released just one limited edition 7” single CLUB HAVANA: Po Na Na GRITTY SHAKER: The Zodiac – Electro thus far (`Five Minutes With The Arctic soundclash with DJs Gordon Kaye and Ed Fisher. Monkeys’, currently attracting silly money TUESDAY 23rd ACOUSTIC NIGHT: The Victoria, Jericho JAZZ CLUB with ALVIN ROY: The BACKROOM BOOGIE: The Bullingdon bids on Ebay), but they’ve already been the Bullingdon BOSSAPHONIK: The Cellar – With jazz, subject of a predictably rabid record OPEN MIC SESSION: The Exeter Hall, soul and breakbeats collective, The Sugar Beats company bidding war, had Radio 1’s Zane Cowley Band. Lowe in a right old lather and played HEADCOUNT + PHYAL: The Cellar – Killer numerous oversubscribed gigs around the punk rocking noise from the mighty Headcount, country, building up an intense cult plus punk-metal from following with terrifying ease. Musically Phyal. their lineage is similar to The Libertines, CHIARINA: Café Rouge Kaiser Chiefs et al, part way between WEDNESDAY Squeeze’s clever power-pop and The Clash’s melodic punk rush, but it’s the lyrics that 24th really grab you, frontman Alex Turner laying THE COOPER into everything from wannabe-American TEMPLE CLAUSE: The bands to over-zealous bouncers with acidic Zodiac – Carling northern wit. Simple, addictive riffs and Weekend warm-up for overdriven guitars aplenty; Arctic Monkeys the Reading tech-rock will probably be on the scrap heap this time heroes – see main preview next year, but they look like they’re going to Z AFRICA BRAZILIA + burn brightly in the meantime BIG SPEAKERS: The Bullingdon – Party- BACKROOM BOOGIE: The Bullingdon hard Brazilian hop hop RUBBER MONKEYS: The Red Lion, Witney crew make their Oxford KUJO SOUNDS: Po Na Na debut with live-wire SATURDAY 20th support from Oxford’s YOUR SONG: The Zodiac – Mac’s annual premier rap gang. birthday bash with added cover version madness IRISH FOLK returns once again. This time round it’s Chinese SESSION: The Exeter Finger Trap, The Family Machine, The Walk Hall, Cowley Off, ATL, Boywithatoy, The Moneyshots, Nine DELICIOUS MUSIC Stone Cowboy and The Red Stripes ripping rock OPEN MIC SESSION: and roll history to shreds in an alcohol-fuelled Harcourt Arms, frenzy of bad taste and disrespect. A night where Nuneham Courtenay reputations are made and livers destroyed. THURSDAY 25th JOHN OTWAY: The Port Mahon – Back at DJ DEREK: The Zodiac the Port Mahon to wreak more pop havoc in a – Ska, soul, reggae and confined space, clown prince of pop Otway plays more from the legendary the one-hit loser card to perfection. Bristolian DJ. FELL CITY GIRL + CARETAKER + THE TOWERSEY RACE: The Wheatsheaf – This month’s FESTIVAL: Towersey Nighthsift cover stars launch their new single, Village – Opening night ‘Weaker Light’. See main interview feature. of the folk festival, with ROADRUNNER: The Bullingdon – Mod, a headline set from Rolf northern soul, funky Hammond and 60s freakbeat. Harris. SUNDAY 28th AUGUST BANK HOLIDAY FREE Exeter Hall Pub MUSIC FESTIVAL: The Exeter Corner Cowley / Marsh Road Hall, Cowley (2pm) – The free live 01865 776431 music extravaganza continues with www.thex.co.uk sets from Uniting The Elements, Sarah Wilson, Laima Bite, Rami, Leni Ward, Glenda Huish, Jeremy Hughes THE BEST FREE MUSIC and Doug Hodge. VENUE IN TOWN! DELICIOUS MUSIC OPEN MIC AUGUST BANK HOLIDAY SESSION: The Old School House 1ST ANNUAL FREE FEST @ THE X TOWERSEY FESTIVAL: Towersey All acts and times subject to change. Entry is FREE on Village – Kate Rusby is today’s star Wednesday 24th turn on the main stage, with support all days, but NUMBERS ARE LIMITED. BE THERE EARLY TO BE SURE OF ADMISSION! THE COOPER from John McSherry’s First Light, Tre Martelli and Boka Halat. Performance Times are subject to change. Please check the website nearer the time. www.thex.co.uk TEMPLE CLAUSE: THE HENDRED EXPERIENCE: The Friday 26th August 7pm - 12am Plough, East Hendred (1pm) – First Ian Parker Band / Michael Myers / The Invisible / Blue Wax The Zodiac half of a a two-day live music festival Saturday 27th August. Till 12am Reading’s Cooper Temple Clause got sucked with The G’s, The Rooster Band, Cheesegraters / Tounsi / The Powders / The Franklins / into the rock mainstream so quickly after Stem, Twizz Twangle, Electricity The Epstein (TBC) their initial arrival that it was easy to forget Comes From Other Planets, Nick Sunday 28th August. Till 11:30pm Chamfer and more. Uniting The Elements / Sarah Wilson / The Good / Laima what a great, often bizarre, band they were. LOADED: The Black Horse, Bite / Rami / Leni Ward / Glenda Huish / Jeremy Hughes It doesn’t seem that long ago they were / Doug Hodge (TBC) Kidlington creating huge swells of mad kraut-punk Monday 29th August. 3pm-12am psychedelic noise down at the Bully in MONDAY 29th Leburn / Kohoutek / Anton Barbeau / James Sergeant / front of a handful of early converts; tonight AUGUST BANK HOLIDAY FREE Dave Leece / Dan Austin / Lee Davies / Ben Dugard / they’re warming up for the Carling Weekend MUSIC FESTIVAL: The Exeter Osprey. 2:30 - 5:30 Folk Session In The Garden & BBQ in front of a long-since sold-out house. Hall, Cowley (2pm) – Final full day Weather Permitting They’ve been pretty quiet in this country of the Ex’s free Bank Holiday live music extravaganza, featuring sets over th e past year, having spent most of it from Kohoutek, Anton Barbeau, conquering the States, but a follow-up to James Sergeant, Dave Leece, Dan last year’s ‘Kick Up The Fire And Watch Austin, Lee Davies, Ben Dugard and The Flames Break Loose’ is due before Osprey, plus a folk session in the Christmas. Ambitious, druggy, bombastic, garden. indulgent, excessive; it’s all in the CTC DUNGEN: The Zodiac – Sweden’s experience, but the way they’ve mixed and soon-to-be latest megastars, formed matched influences from some of the more around classically-trained virtuoso and wilful bands of recent years (Radiohead, hip hop freak Gustav Ejstes. Taking Spiritualised, Mansun) and classic rock of the blissed-out sounds of 60s folk, old (Led Zep, Hawkwind, Floyd) into a prog rock and psychedelia, with a heady techno rock makes them one of the baggy groove, they’ve just released most enduringly interesting British rock debut album, ‘Ta Det Lugnt’ to much bands around. critical acclaim. TOWERSEY FESTIVAL: Towersey TOWERSEY FESTIVAL: Towersey Village – The last day of the village Village - First full day of the village folk festival with Sultans of Squeeze, Dr Faustus festival, now in its 41st year. Musical and Martha Tilston. highlights today include Last Night’s Fun, THE HENDRED EXPERIENCE: The Jez Lowe and the Bad Pennies and Grand Plough, East Hendred (1pm) – Day two Union. of the mini-festival, with live sets from WHO’S NEXT: The Red Lion, Witney Raggasaurus, Lagrima, Jeremy Hughes, KUJO SOUNDS: Po Na Na Rami, Les Clochards, Nick Lewis and more. SATURDAY 27th CLUB HAVANA: Po Na Na AUGUST BANK HOLIDAY FREE MUSIC FESTIVAL: The Exeter Hall, TUESDAY 30th Cowley (2pm) – Full day of free live music JAZZ CLUB with THE TOM GREY at the Ex with The Cheesegraters, Tounsi, QUINTET: The Bullingdon The Powders, The Franklins and The OPEN MIC SESSION: The Exeter Hall, Epstein. Cowley SNEAKY: The Port Mahon CHIARINA: Café Rouge REGGAE AND R’N’B NIGHT: The WEDNESDAY 31st Bullingdon IRISH FOLK SESSION: The Exeter TOWERSEY FESTIVAL: Towersey Hall, Cowley Village – Today’s highlights include Show GIGSWAP UK NIGHT: The Wheatsheaf of Hands, Karine Polwart and Whapweasel. DELICIOUS MUSIC OPEN MIC ENDLESS GROOVE: The Cellar SESSION: Far from The Madding SLEEPWALKER: The Red Lion, Witney Crowd Nightshift listings are free. Deadline for inclusion in the gig guide is the 20th of each month - no exceptions. Call 01865 372255 (10am-6pm) or email listings to Nightshift@oxfordmusic.net. This gig guide is copyright of Nightshift Magazine and may not be reproduced without permission. Photo: Sam Shepherd LIVE CAMP ACTOR / THE KEYBOARD CHOIR / SCHLA LA LAS The Zodiac Imagine if Withnail and I had been set against a backdrop of 80s London. Imagine that instead of actors, the paralytic protagonists were musicians instead. Their Jag would have been careering around to the sounds of Erasure while on their way to a gig, and Camp Actor would be driving. Camp Actor are another band to plumb the depths of 80s revivalism and try to somehow intimate that there were some glory days in those bleak years. Far from the opulence of Duran Duran, Camp Actor are dressed in what look like John Motson’s cast-offs as they whirl their way through some reasonable songs. The high point comes with ‘This Is Not New York’, a tune that, like Withnail’s closing soliloquy, suggests that brilliance is within their grasp. Keyboard Choir prove that eight keyboards on one stage does not always mean lengthy Rick Wakeman solos are just around the corner. Instead, they deliver a kind of electronic post-rock that makes the spine tingle. It’s not much to look at, but occasionally they hit on moments that are heavenly. The Schla La Las take to the stage in matching outfits, looking like 1950s American Housewives on the lash. After the grandeur of The Keyboard Choir, the Schla’s rickety take on rock and roll is endearingly fragile. If the vocals, and a real sense of fun in what the Schla’s do. Any band that has 5678’s had produced more than once decent song, then they would be a their own theme tune is OK by us. That it sounds like it should feature fitting comparison. As with anything that Piney Gir is involved with there’s somewhere on an episode of Happy Days somehow only makes it cooler. a childlike sweetness to it. There’s handclaps, fuzzed guitars, harmonized Allin Pratt GENE LOVES ILIKETRAINS / THE THE TREAT / RUSTY JEZEBEL THUMB QUINTET SHERIFF / SIMON The Bullingdon The Cellar DAVIES There’s something a little sad watching a The Thumb Quintet are almost anathema to a favourite old band still kicking it out nearly venue like The Cellar. The place oozes rock and The Zodiac twenty years after their greatest achievements, roll from every pillar, while the band seem more Tonight’s Gappy Tooth night is sparsely attended, especially when, like Gene Loves Jezebel, only suited to a setting like the Holywell Music Rooms which is a great shame as some little-known part of the band remains. Even sadder to think or a sunny summer meadow. There are three of talents are uncovered. This unearthing of gems is that singer Mike Aston hasn’t spoken to his them: two acoustic guitarists and an electric something that is happening with increasing identical twin brother Jay for five years after a cellist, plus a box of electronic tricks and rhythms regularity on Gappy Tooth Industries nights, legal battle over the rights to band’s name. that rarely imposes itself too forcefully on where the emphasis is on creating a mix and Still, he’s in jovial mood tonight, despite the proceedings. Stepping back in time to the early- match bill that breaks down genre boundaries. meagre turnout, chain-smoking and swigging lager 60s birth of English folk-pop, they’re pastoral Simon Davies is first up and treats us to some like the down-home Welsh lad he essentially is, and pretty, almost classical with the odd country tracks from his new album. It’s a set of lovely only the crushed velvet jacket, leather trousers twang. Occasionally they meander like an idle acoustic songs with a bossa nova beat, ably and shaggy peroxide mane giving his glamour puss Cotswold brook, but at their best they’re like a assisted by Colin on the double bass. It’s very past away. The band are now resident in the stripped-down Penguin Café Orchestra, while the reminiscent in delivery of Luke Smith, the wry, States, where they enjoyed greater success than closing number, with its moody strings and funny, self depreciating humour that both men over here in the 80s, and have lost their bass prominent synth drones unearths that previously have very much evident. It’s a splendid way to player partway through this UK tour so the first neglected genre mash-up of Fairport Convention relax and ease yourself into the evening. half of the set is acoustic with Mike and guitarist and Gary Numan. There’s nothing else quite like Rusty Sheriff from Portsmouth veers the evening Switch knocking out some bare-bones old classics them in Oxford at the moment. off into a turntablist direction. It’s a fine display like ‘Heartache’ and ‘Cow’, Mike’s voice holding Leeds’ Iliketrains brandish stronger weaponry, of scratching, and Rusty is someone who cares up well despite those years of indulgence: a though post-rock is their bag of noise. In 2005 more about tune than posing. Sometimes you wish plaintive, reedy howl, partway between Bono, it’s pretty much impossible to do anything radical the backing tracks emitting from his laptop were Patti Smith and Neil Young. It’s a bit cheesy at and new with this particular form, but the band a bit more substantial, but it’s a minor quibble. times, slightly ham-fisted, but the full electric set make a satisfactory fight of it, overcoming both The set drags on a bit and reduces the dynamics; shows sparks of that old magic: ‘Upstairs’ and their cumbersome moniker, nervous disposition concentrating his efforts into a shorter time span ‘Bruises’ from goth classic debut ‘Promises’ still and rather clichéd cavalry jacket uniformity with might better results. leave scars, while the gorgeous, desolate ‘Stephen’ a set that manages an easy balance of cool The night rounds off in a rock style with The from ‘Immigrant’ re-ignites a thousand teenage ambience and forceful power. Alternately icy and Treat. Quite frankly they’re average at best and memories. It’d be great, if unlikely, that Mike and bombastic, they’re all plateaux of guitar only exist to clear more punters from the room. Jay would reunite once more; Gene Loves Jezebel distortion and clamouring crescendos, with a keen The singer gives it the stadium rock poses and feels like half a band with only one of them, and grasp of texture and atmosphere. A projectionist- attitude, quite oblivious to the audience reaction. while there’s precious little chance they’ll ever cum-trumpeter adds depth and variety to the Things pick up when they rock out more towards regain the success they once enjoyed, tonight’s standard guitars and keyboard sound, and while the end of the set, but a lot of it is mere pilfering trip down memory lane is a poignant reminder Iliketrains are unlikely to break out of a crowded from rock’s past, and at one stage they blatantly that our lives are littered with lost pop treasure. genre any time soon, there’s a small legion of steal ‘Whole Lotta Love’s riff wholesale. The For the dark of heart, investigate this forgotten disaffected Mogwai fans out there who would do Treat provoke no reaction in you at all, except gem of a band immediately. far worse than catch a ride here. possibly mild, unintentional amusement. Dale Kattack Terry Molloy Russell Barker THE LITTLE EXPLORER / THE JESUS Oxford University Department of Psychiatry, Warneford YEARS / THIS TOWN NEEDS GUNS Hospital, Oxford OX3 7JX The Wheatsheaf We’re confused. We’d headed downstairs the worth of practice and confidence – half an hour previously to escape The Jesus TTNG are alternately effusive and Year’s monochrome approximation of an melancholy. At times there’s an HAVE YOU BEEN DEPRESSED old Mogwai b-side, callously and calmly effortlessness about the way they control AND SUICIDAL IN THE PAST? marking the Derby instrumentalists as post- their song structures, although you end up rock bottom feeders. But we return to feeling they’re switching gears too much, ARE YOU FEELING BETTER NOW? discover the band transformed, quite trying to show off what they can do rather If you have been depressed and suicidal in the literally, into something bigger and better. than letting their songs breathe naturally. past but you are now feeling better, you may You see, The Jesus Years are The Little Equally, they get bogged down in be eligible to take part in a trial of a Explorer, with the addition of a singer, meandering attempts at dub jams. The singer psychological treatment designed to help some decent enough tunes and a few pitches himself somewhere between Thom people STAY better, starting in late September redeeming features. Thoughtful, emo Yorke and Morrissey but if his lyrics are as 2005. We are looking for people aged18-65 melancholy replaces studious noodling and full of poetic genius as either of his years old who are fluent in English. The initial we even consider buying a copy of their inspirations we’ll never know, as the words assessment takes about 3 hours and expenses lovingly handcrafted 7” single. remain indecipherable throughout. will be reimbursed. Emotionally fraught local rockers This Still a band finding their feet then, but on Town Needs Guns have turned themselves tonight’s evidence, This Town Needs Guns Are you interested? For more information, call us on around a bit since we last heard them, too. are at least heading in the right direction. Freephone: 0800 0836130 or (01865) 226468 Where once was ramshackle, run-down indie Practice rather than weaponry might be a Email: email@example.com. trash, now is something rather more better order of the day for now, though. Website: http://cebmh.warne.ox.ac.uk/csr/ dynamic and cohesive. Never underestimate Dale Kattack stressreduction.html Contacting us does not mean you have to take part. You are free to withdraw at any time. All information is THE YOUNG JOSH ROUSE strictly confidential (Ethics Ref. O02.052) KNIVES / The Zodiac ! is a FORWARD, RUSSIA! Josh Rousewho Nebraska-born singer /ten songwriter lived in Nashville for years, until recently. This alone could point The Cellar to a meld of standard country-tinged solo Leeds foursome Forward, Russia!’s singles fare: kind of Willie Nelson meets Damien are selling out on the underground scene Rice. Happily, tonight Josh has brought his sooner than they can burn them off, and four-strong entourage to the Zodiac to quash why? Militant Disco? agit prog? the Loony any pessimistic expectations. Toons’ Tasmanian Devil aping the Crazy With Josh, the emphasis is on the song, Frog? They’re all these things and more, rather than its constituent parts or sound, showering like sweat on a stomping crowd yet it’s not hard to pin down particular that claps like a festival toilet door during a reference points. The influence of The salmonella outbreak, while being aurally Smiths and The Cure are as easy to detect as roasted by a singer who looks like the guy that of Neil Young and Bob Dylan; the who played Dennis Pennis and is more results ramble between laid-back Bruce incomprehensible than At The Drive-In reading Finnegan’s Wake in a wind tunnel. Don’t look for answers in their song titles Springsteen (‘It’s The Night Time), west- coast soft rock (‘Streetlights’), British indie (‘Winter in the Hamptons’) and even soul DELICIOUS either, they label them simply as digits. So (‘Come Back’). Songs like ‘Under Cold Blue MUSIC CLUB ‘13’ hurtles along like a train, part Joy Stars’ are blissful and mellow - perfect Division, part XTC on Ecstasy. and ‘15’ summer afternoon lounging music - yet still Live Music in August takes PiL’s pills and beats up on The Bloc work in the dark confines of the Zodiac. Every Sunday - OPEN MIC SESSION Party. Katie on drums is the real Some of his more musically upbeat tracks The Old School House, Gloucester Green 7.30-10.30 Free! powerhouse of it all, holding every nail have bittersweet lyrics, and vice versa; Every Thursday - LIVE JAZZ, BLUES & FOLK bomb beat down while simultaneously riling ‘Under Your Charms’ sounds particularly Far From the Madding Crowd, Friars Entry 8.30-11 Free! each caged song with her sticks. Wonder, oh sad, but is lyrically rather winsome and yes indeed. charming. He explores both sides of love; Wednesday 3rd / 17th / 31st - OPEN MIC SESSION Billed as a warm up gig for Truck, you his most recent album, ‘Nashville’, followed Far From the Madding Crowd, Friars Entry 8.30-11 Free! could have cooked pizzas over The Young his divorce, and ‘My Love is Gone’ is as For bookings/info- Tel: 07876 184623 / 01865 242784 Knives tonight, they are that hot. New much a paean to that love of the past as management, new EP and a sound sharper ‘Sad Eyes’ is to hopeful new beginnings. than a samurai sword, this is the best of The Both are delivered as personal narratives Young Knives and The Young Knives at with full conviction, yet warmly rather than their very best. Tonight, a hundred voices uncomfortably. are lost yelling along to staccato double Josh certainly has the audience in his thrall; chorus lines like “You were screaming at ‘Nashville’ is his fifth album, and through your mother, I was punching your dad” and sympathetic mediums like Radio 2 he has “Where’s the f***ing rent, where’s the quietly yet steadily inspired much devotion f***ing rent”, while old and new songs like while remaining relatively unknown. While `Autobahn’ and `Decision’ chart not only he may not be everyone’s cup of tea, how much the Young Knives sound is now tonight he works hard to convert the ROCK-POP-DANCE-GOLDEN OLDIES-INDIE- supremely them and only them, but how far waverers; in Joshworld, it could be any time SOUL-TECHNO-HIP-HOP-JAZZ-LATIN-REGGAE- along the road to greatness this band have between now and the 1970s, but he certainly DRUM&BASS-GARAGE—R&B-DISCO-1950s- finally come. makes it a wonderful place to be. 2000s. Brand new back catalogue CDs £4 - £7 Paul Carrera Kirsten Etheridge each. Brand new chart CDs £5 - £10 each DEMOS If you do not supply us with a proper contact number and address as stated below, we will not review your demo. DEMO OF melody, while ‘Don’t Hold Me Down’, with its electro baggy rhythm could be The Stone Roses on Mogadon. It’s unassuming THE MONTH enough but clever with it and obviously the www.appletreestudio.co.uk work of two very talented people. Hopefully it won’t be a one-off PATSY DECLINE collaboration. Possibly the best month for demos we’ve had in an age, but this is still an easy winner. Patsy Decline is a long-time HAMMER Vs THE collaborator with local musical loon Twizz Twangle, and this album-length demo finds SNAKE Twizz providing back-up for Patsy’s often Blimey, Killers fever is spreading! Bands mesmeric vocal performances. Recorded on are falling for New Romantic revivalism “a budget of nil”, with vocals all recorded left, right and centre. And it is here we find on first take, lyrics made up on the spot, the splendidly-named Hammer Vs The and with Twizz’s often unholy mess of Snake, distorted vocals, metal beats and noise going on behind, the whole project funky synth-rocking 80s grooves all feels like it’s on the verge of falling apart at present and correct. Opener ‘Synff Phuck’ any minute, if it were ever together in the lays out their stall with some style, the first place. But it’s absolutely fantastic: tumbling robot dance rhythms and from `Cartel’ with its synthetic Burundi glistening synth lines lurching close to The beats, phased vocals and abstract guitar Faint at times, although they’re quickly off noodling, a maddening clamour of perfect on another tangent with ‘Insatiable’, a pop and traditional Celtic folk, to the disjointed, fragmented piano-led slice of fuzzy synth-pop wash of `Lost In Space’. mischief that could pass for Devo getting `N.A.S.A. Astronauts’ is pure lunatic art self-consciously jazzy or, at its most 5K house brilliance, bludgeoned half to death hysterical, Pere Ubu’s mangled punk-funk. 32 by cheap effects and mental ward poetry, By the time the demo ends, with ‘The while `Sky Theft’ is partway between 70s Never Ending Story Of Franks Vs The disco simplicity and prog-rock indulgence, Nazis’, Hammer Vs The Snake have dug Patsy’s voice pure and limpid, but a light further back into their record collections, year away from bland stage school ideals of unearthed The Clash’s ‘Sandanista’ and purity. There’s more, but we’re running out tried to update it via The Futureheads. of words. Yet again the lunatics have taken There’s a nasty, cynical side of us thinks over the asylum. Crazy people, great, great that maybe they’re simply trying to latch music. on to something trendy and cool, but they do it with enough panache to win us over. NICHOLE STEAL GRUNT AND Nichole Steal’s last demo, just over a year ago, was an impressive stab at the doomier GROOVE side of trip-hop. Back for more, Kidlington’s Paul Hamblin (the chap PRODUCTIONS behind Nichole Steal) still seems to be Ah, such an ugly name for such a pretty drawing on Massive Attack and Tricky for musical project. Grunt & Groove his downbeat, atmospheric soundscapes. Productions is the work of local singer and The first track here, ‘Heartache’, is all Nightshift favourite Mark Crozer, and tripped-out hip hop beats, edgy synths former If and Strangefruit person Bert and tight, bubbling bass runs, with barely Audubert (possibly not his real name). It’s discernible vocals wandering in and out of quite lo-fi in many ways but with an the mix. Decidedly lopsided and slightly ambitious edge to its production and three haunting at times. A shame he doesn’t rather lovely songs that hopefully promise expand on these ideas on ‘Gotta Have It’, even more stuff to come. The psychedelic which is a rather twee folk-pop song with folk swoon of ‘Skyhigh’ lives up to its title girly vocals and some dodgy lyrics about with Mark’s breathless falsetto giving a love and stuff. It’s inoffensive enough but genuine feeling of floating in the clouds, not in the same class as other stuff he’s while the spaced-out production recalls produced. It almost sounds like Paul wants The Beatles’ early experiments with to break out of his gothic hip hop box and psychedelia at times. There’s a lazy funk try something different but doesn’t really underbelly to the song too which carries on know where to go from there. Our advice: through ‘Here I Am’, with its gently just keep digging that big, black hole. The incessant bass rhythms and Byrds-y darker the better, dear boy. hangdog solemnity of the three songs here THE TROY and it’s got a gravity to it that drags you ENCLOSURE into its emotional depths. There’s not an ounce of tweeness or self-pity here, despite Must be doomy, atmospheric electro theme the mood and subject matter. “There’s just month. The Troy Enclosure – the work of cardboard and dead bodies on my someone called Brandon Toy – is another television”, croons singer Ben Osbourne. dark, ambient oddity, again with a strangely You should get yourself a freeview box, my lopsided, out of focus feel, like something lad; then you could watch live and trying to communicate through a badly- interactive Big Brother all day instead. On tuned radio. The vibe is pretty languid for second thoughts, the dead bodies might be the most part, mumbled vocals and sparse less depressing. The thought that 16 year acoustic guitar overlaying discreet synth olds can make music that sounds like this, hums on tracks like ‘Choir’, although however, fills us with much joy. Brandon creeps into more song-based territory with ‘Dreamless’, a mournful, measured snippet of Jeff Buckley-inspired STRAFE THE COURTYARD STUDIO folk-pop. The strength here is the way There are two ways you could look at this OTARI MTR90 MK11, 24 TRACK TAPE Brandon uses simple, uncluttered textures, demo: silly, indulgent pomposity, or a MACHINE & MTA 980, 32/24/24 CONSOLE, and the spaces between the instruments, to clever updating of 70s excess in a modern weave fine threads of sound together SOUNDSCAPE DIGITAL EDITOR, SUPERB indie rock setting. We’re in a good mood so neatly. The piercing electro noise on final CONTROL ROOM WITH GOOD SELECTION OF we’ll opt for the latter. Mainly because track, ‘Footnote’ is the only thing to ‘The World Is Your Oyster (Swallow It OUTBOARD GEAR, MIDI FACILITIES INCLUDE puncture the atmosphere, and while the Whole)’ is so stilted and hysterical it LOGIC AUDIO, 8 MEG S1000, etc likes of Royksopp do such things in a more sounds like it’s about to suffer a seizure, accomplished style, this is a promising start. but has a strange charm that’s somewhere RESIDENTIAL FACILITIES OPTIONAL between arty 80s weirdness and the TOO FAST TO LIVE slightly mad proggy indulgence of The Alex Harvey Band. We’re not sure whether this Phone KATE or PIPPA for details Hey, dig the mad-as-a-crazy-rock-and-roll- completely counteracts the overwrought on 01235 845800 pig band name! These guys probably chop nature and complete lack of cohesion of up and barbecue Lemmy’s guts for ‘She Fell Down the Stairs’, or the over- breakfast before setting off for a hard day’s earnest emotion of ‘Madelina’, but even on labour down the boulder crushing factory. this last number, there’s a winning More likely, they get high as kites together sweetness to the melody that appeals to listening to Primal Scream’s ‘Swastika your better nature. Eyes’ and The Prodigy’s ‘Smack My Bitch Up’ if this bolshy, breakneck techno-punk is anything to go on. ‘NRG’ could easily be a sneaky steal of some obscure Prodigy outtake, but hits all the right buttons, and THE DEMO with some force. ‘Powder Burn’ is goblin- faced electro-goth with a swarm of razor- DUMPER sharp shards of synth noise swirling around it, while ‘Destroyer’ finds the merry band of brothers rocking it up in a STIMULUS Nine Inch Nails stylee, down-tuned guitar Worst of a good bunch? Yes. Possibly not chug and feel-my-pain ghoulish whisper deserving of the Demo Dumper? Hmm, and all. Derivative maybe, but derivative well… maybe. But then they’ve brought it with attitude, and that’s all you need to upon themselves. Stimulus are a bunch of win in this particular war. teenagers from Witney and Carterton, just starting out and perhaps not deserving of such an early sledgehammering of their WHERE I’M creative endeavours, but if you do go and get an adenoidal pot-bellied pig to sing for you, CALLING FROM you must take the consequences. The first They describe themselves as a country- track here, ‘Eternal Fuzz’ really isn’t that inspired indie band, they’ve named bad, with its racing bass rhythms and themselves after a Raymond Carver short spangled guitars, a little like an old Sisters of story and they’re all 16 or 17 years old. Mercy demo, but the horrible, wretched This could be so, so wrong. But instead it’s nasal moaning just won’t stop: like the very much right. In parts, quite lovely in nasty evil Tripods in War of the Worlds, fact. Where I’m Calling From, hailing from even faced with a reasonable barrage of sonic semi-idyllic Oxford outpost Wolvercote, firepower. The band keep up the fight on create gently inspired, lo-fi, wispy, lispy ‘Kinky Fresh’, a crash and burn of folk-pop whimsy with much of the same rudimentary post-grunge rocking, but in the serenity and quietly rough-edged charm as end it just sounds like a one-armed weakling Belle and Sebastian’s early recordings. vainly trying to drag himself out of a giant There’s a touch of Low in the relentlessly bowl of thick soup in slow motion. 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?