Tag Archive: dylegans (the)


9280Apparently there is some sort of soccer tournament on (right, that’s another local demographic alienated) but whilst a few of the regular musical haunts have given themselves over to big screen TV coverage and people shouting “go on my son” …I assume, I’m not an expert, there is still plenty of live music to catch around and about.

One of the more interesting musical visitors to these parts can be found at The Tuppenny tonight. Grant Sharkey is on a one man mission to record and release forty albums in twenty years and he is out and about playing songs from album number eleven, Thoughts and Prayers. He not only does strange things to an upright bass but threads social commentary, environmentalism, avant-garde view points, wit, wisdom, warmth and humour through his songs. Support is from Kitchen Sink Dramas who come from a very similar place and I don’t mean Southampton.

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eFestivalsI’m not sure if it is just a Swindon thing but it does seem that every other gig you see advertised these days features some earnest young acoustic guitar wielding wannabe aiming to be the next Frank Turner or Laura Marling. It may seem like an easy way to get into music; low overheads, no egotistical band mates to fight with, the ability to tour the country in a broken down Fiat Uno etc but the problem with so much of it going on is that for every soon to be discovered darling of 6music or Wychwood Festival there are a dozen chancers waxing not so lyrical about their recent break ups over a rudimentary knowledge of the key of A minor and clumsily rhyming June with moon.

Thankfully if you want a master class in how it should be done, all you have to do is head to The Victoria tonight when the prodigal son returns, sort of. Songs of Praise is being headlined by Gaz Brookfield, aided and abetted by his fiddle-wielding associate, Ben Wain. Fresh from another jaunt supporting The Levellers and about to share a stage with those emotionally battered, wind swept rock gods, New Model Army (yes, I’m a bit of a fan), I suggest you catch him whilst he is still cheaper than a pint of beer, because it won’t last much longer. Also on the bill is Joshua Caole, who brings a chilled Elliot Smith meets Gram Parsons feeling to the proceedings and kicking things off is the soulful, funky vibe that is Benji Clements.

Two of the musical genres that people have most problems identifying are “world” and “roots” music. If you go to The Beehive tonight you will see both genres colliding head on. Mambo Jambo are an amazing duo that mix Latin styles with bluegrass, jazz and Eastern European sounds – raw enough to sound authentic, virtuosic enough to be mesmerising.

Punks will find much to like over at Riffs Bar on Friday as legendary, urban rail punks Eastfield make a rare visit to this neck of the woods. Three chords, catchy tunes, an often tongue in cheek story and lots of smiles. What’s not to like? The Useless Eaters will be mixing up covers and originals in a tribute to the first wave punk era and opening the night with unforgettable hooks and despondent satire is Strength in Blunders, featuring a guest bassist in the form of Pete Monkey. Nice.

The other big name in town that night is former InMe front man Dave McPherson (pictured) who can be found at The Castle. At a turn uplifting, mournful, calm and soothing, whilst often being a world away from his previous musical vehicle, here is an artist that delivers something very special indeed.

At The Beehive a collection of familiar faces from the local scene, who go by the name The Sitting Tenants will be blending power-pop, new wave, psych and soul into wonderfully original creations, whilst at The Rolleston, The Dylegans take skiffle, country and old school rock and roll as their chosen musical weapons.

Saturday is all about roots music at The Victoria, as Hiproute will be laying out their trademark funked up, acoustic blues stall. Support comes from the quirky, harmony fuelled, folky, surf vibe of Willowen, who I can only describe as being what Noah and The Whale sound like in their own heads, though fall way short of in reality. Delta-esque rockers The Blue Trees and Alex Roberts also add value to the deal. More blues can be found in the guise of Built For Comfort at The Rolleston and it’s slick contemporary covers with Toxic over at The Swiss Chalet.

If you have a craving for electronic music, DJ Dust hosts Digital at Piri Piri, a night of music and videos of that ilk featuring everything from the likes of New order to Chase and Status.

If you want your final fix of music before the working week pulls you back then there are a number of options on Sunday. The afternoon session at The Beehive is taken by The Racket main man Plummie and his new solo venture,  support for that one is The Black Sheep Apprentice himself, Skiddy and the original Sweet Plum, Cat Jamieson. Old school rock’n’roll and rockabilly riffs are to be found at 20 At The Kings with Josie and The Outlaw and if gargantuan slabs of rock with grunge overtones are more your cup of tea (or should I say Seattle Coffee) then the place to be is The New Inn for Vanarin.

Rounding up on Wednesday at The Running Horse you will find bluesman Ian O’Regan and Rhys Bury providing the entertainment.

Library - 124There has been a lot of concerned discussion recently over rumours that The Victoria, pretty much the constant in the ever-changing local musical landscape of the last eight years, is up for sale. Just to put you at your ease, here are the facts straight from the horses mouth – that’s just a turn of phrase and in no way implying that Mr Young is anything other that 100% prime beef. Yes, the business, i.e. the internal workings rather than the building itself, is on the market, but Dave and Anna want to stress that they intend to leave it in safe hands so that it continues very much in the same vein.

 

When you think about it The Victoria has grown to become part of the national music circuit (just look at their gig roster for proof) so any successful buyer is likely to come from a similar background rather than just being the ex-landlord of The Kebab and Calculator whose claim to fame is a once a week acoustic night and a quarterly under 18’s Battle of The Bands. Remember, Heraclitus told us “There is nothing permanent, except change” but then he did drink too much, though his first album was a real cracker.

 

So fittingly and inevitable we start tonight at The Victoria. It’s Bands and Burlesque again and this time it’s a chance for newcomers to the dance genre to get a bit of a showcase plus music from psychobilly crew, Cowboy and The Corpse. And if retro is your thing there is competition out at Riffs Bar in the shape of The Ludwig Beatles, who recreate the iconic band in all their, rock and roller, mop-topping, acid eating and genre defying glory.

 

The Beehive has music from John Blek and The Rats, a well travelled six piece who specialise in folk, country and Americana.

 

Another constant of our local scene is Holmes Music and to celebrate 50 years in the music business they are arranging a series of shows, tonight they take over The Victoria and offer us none other than Nick Harper (not pictured). Anyone spawned of the iconic Roy Harper and brought up in a house with a continual procession of Zeps, Floyds, Who’s and other heroes was always going to end up a musician and as such has been described as doing “things to his guitar that would have had Segovia weeping into his Rioja” in a good way I presume. If that wasn’t enough, Colour The Atlas is the support, a clash of cinematic folk, chilled trip beats and swaths of sensuous, late night atmospherics. Now that’s what you call a celebration.

 

More sweet music comes in the shape of Antoine Architeuthis and The Cotton Candy Rebellion, joyous acoustic folk tinged with classic rock and with a spiritual vibe running through the centre. He is at The Beehive.

 

The Furnace is the only place to be on Saturday as Peter and The Test Tube Babies roll into town. Originally part of the Punk Pathetique sub-genre that incorporated absurdist subject matters and humourous lyrics, don’t be fooled by such a seemingly silly approach as by contrast they are one of the most polished and professional bands on the punk circuit today. Support comes from the incorrigible local punk stalwarts and all round good eggs, Charred Hearts and Strength in Blunders, a new and infectious pop-punk trio but containing some very familiar faces.

 

Possibly as far removed from that gig, which is what I love about the versatility of music, is The Antonio Forcione Trio at The Arts Centre, a musical tapestry of African and Latin influences interwoven with flamenco, classical and Indian rhythms.

 

There is a lot to offer on Sunday, a brilliant tribute to Kate Bush, Never Forever, is an all seated affair at The Victoria; folk, skiffle and rockabilly are delivered acoustically by The Dylegans (Lonnie and Bob…gedit?) at The Rolleston and culture vultures have the choice of jazz guitarist Terry Hutchinson at Baker Street or recitals of Schubert and Shostakovich at the Arts Centre.

 

More jazz is on offer at Baker Street on Tuesday with Tantrum, a trio made up of Roger Beaujolais, Tommaso Starace and Paul Jefferies. And as always we find ourselves rounding off the week at The Running Horse for it’s regular Wednesday session, this time featuring Bateleurs. For the few of you not in the know, and if not why not? Bateleurs alchemize Americana, English folk and Celtic vibes into wonderfully accessible and joyously upbeat tunes. Support comes from Simon Allen.