This week a slight change from the usual rambling introduction designed to enflame the on-line trolling music community to bravely yet anonymously level such original witticisms as “failed musician” or “do you even listen to music?” in my direction. Instead I thought that I would use the space to talk about a band that have been at the heart of Swindon’s music for more years than they probably care to remember.
Mr Love and Justice is a band drawn from a fluid pool of well-known musicians and acts as a musical soapbox for Steve Cox’s social, and sometimes socialist, commentary. The music is a unique blend of pastoral acoustics and west coast 60’s jangle and tonight you will find them at The Victoria to launch their latest album News From Nowhere. It is an album that sees them embracing their more psychedelic references, an album of songs about love and Haight, if you like, but still with a dash of the usual down to earth, acid-folk feel, political and literary references. With their fairly glacial paced approach to putting albums out, an album launch from them is something you won’t want to miss. Support is from Ells and The Southern Wild.
Some people are of the opinion that TV talent shows benefit the program makers and judges more than those pouring out their hearts onstage before them. Well, in 2009 James Cottriall took part in The Voice (Austrian version) and won. And tonight he plays The Beehive! Dreams do come true. Sorry, cynicism aside, in his defence he does do a neat line in euphoric, upbeat pop, so get your dancing trousers on and check him out.
On Friday a Caribbean vibe is in the air. Firstly in a very obvious form from Boy le Monti who play old school ska and rocksteady. Expect brass drenched tunes, infectious grooves and sweet harmonies from them at The Rolleston. Ska vibes can also be found in the music of Reginald Road but theirs is wrapped up with a punk drive reminiscent of the exotic seventies infusions that resulted when London punks took refuge in the city’s dub and reggae clubs. They play The Beehive.
More retro sounds can be found at The Windmill as The Corsairs, long established psychobilly-ska-punk outfit bring the madness and Riffs Bar plays host to The Plucking Different Ukulele Band who rework well known songs for massed ranks of….well, you work it out.
At The Victoria you can relive the sounds of the 90’s as tribute acts Oas-ish and Stereotonics act as your own musical time machine and at The Swiss Chalet it’s party covers from Mojo, a band who, according to their website have worked with no less than Keith Chegwin!
I will mention that rhythm ‘n’ booze favourites, Hamsters From Hell are playing at The Globe in Highworth on Saturday because they are the only original music I could find but if you like your music tried and tested then you can chose from Cash, a tribute to The Man In Black at The Victoria, Heavy Weather playing rock, soul and funk standards at The Rolleston, Friday Feeling playing undisclosed covers at The Woodlands Edge and Vice Versa laying out a musical stall of indie-rock standards at The Swiss Chalet.
Something funky comes to The Victoria on Sunday in the form of genre-hoppers Land Of The Giants. Breezy brass salvos, reggae and hip-hop grooves and indie and blues vibes all collide to make infectious dance floor fillers and with SN Dubstation in support it looks to be a great night. A second chance to catch Vice Versa can be had at The Rolleston and fellow covers band Penfold are at The Swiss Chalet.
Want something really different? How about an Italian blues duo that plays dressed as robots and who have opened for the likes of Springsteen and Deep Purple. The Cyborgs (pictured), odd band, great music. The Victoria. Tuesday. That is all.
And finally Wednesday at The Roaring Donkey, Jimmy Moore will be breaking up the working week for you – dexterous picking, beats, taps, slides and good time tunes that go far beyond the usual “guy with guitar” expectations.