Tuesday, December 29, 2015

'The only way to hear the noise is when it's good and loud...'

Lemmy. The very word itself is synonymous with rock 'n' roll excess. I first saw Motorhead in 1978 around the time of their first album and they were utterly unlike any other group that I'd heard - I saw them quite a few times over the next 30-odd years and that description still held true. Here they are in 1980 with Fast Eddie on guitar and Filthy Phil on drums, although in many ways it could have been filmed at any time during their reigh of terror. The word 'legend' gets overused these days but it definitely applies to Lemmy and indeed Motorhead doesn't it? It's sad to see him go.

In the meantime here we are in that weird bit between Christmas and New Year - shouldn't I be doing something? Anything?

This is my first bit of time off in ages. Ages. Well it feels like it is anyway - after three-odd months of Ruts D.C. gigs interspersed with local shows and working in the shop having a few days with nothing definite to do feels like something of an unexpected luxury. To this end I've got Columbo on the telly as I write this ('Murder By The Book' since you were wondering, a very good and if I'm honest somewhat distracting episode!) and no real plan for the rest of the day. It's been a while since I've been in this position.

There have been a few gigs since the last entry in these hallowed pages, the first of which saw Big Al Reed and The Blistering Buicks visit The Dolphin in Uxbridge. It being the Friday before Christmas no one was really sure how many people would be in attendance, and as Noel the guv'nor uttered the words 'you might as well go on now as I don't think it'll get any better' it seemed that our worst fears were realised. Our first set was witnessed by a handful of people at best, and as we began our second set nothing had changed - however about halfway through the place suddenly filled up, to such an extent that Noel asked us to play a third set which saw some very, er, interesting scenes on the dance floor and an end to our evening that couldn't have been more different to the beginning.
There was more from Big Al and the boys on Wednesday at The Sunningdale Lounge in Sunningdale and The Three Steps in Cowley on Christmas Eve. The first night was something of a party for Al who knows quite a few people in the area and who had invited pretty much all of them along. As far as I can tell they all turned up, which made for a suitably lively show although the next night might just have eclipsed it in the (in)sanity stakes. With keyboard king Chris away visiting family we considered song options well, although still somehow encored with 'Delilah' which usually has a piano intro - I managed to play something like it but I don't think that it would have impressed a keyboard player. The same line-up then played an afternoon show at The Horns in Watford on Boxing Day while in the evening The Upper Cut played The Dolphin for what I think is the fourth year running. When we arrived at The Horns it was pretty much empty and although there were a few in by the time we started at half past four it was probably the quietest that I'd seen the venue. Still it's a great place to play and we gave a good show with Al on form and the band all playing well. The Upper Cut gig went well too although again there wasn't too many people there when we started. Still the place filled up and despite the fact that I personally thought that we perhaps didn't play as well as we could have we were rebooked for next December 26th so I guess we must have done something right. 

And Ruts D.C. began work on our new album 'Psychic Attack' in Perry Vale Studios with engineer Pat Collier and producer James KnightThe sessions went inordinately well and as is customary I made some scribbly notes - since I appear to have a bit of time on my hands at the moment (!) I'll do my best to get them typed up here in the next few days. In the meantime Columbo is hassling the bad guy as only he can, although I can't help thinking that it might be time to listen to 'No Sleep 'til Hammersmith'...

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