ECHO AND THE BUNNYMEN – LIVE AT CUSTOM HOUSE SQUARE 3.5.2019 (CATHEDRAL QUARTER ARTS FESTIVAL)

If I was Philip Lowry, i’d be insisting that Echo and the Bunnymen perform at Cathedral Quarter Arts Festival, as they performed at the event for the first time since 2010, the last time he scored in an Irish Cup Final.

It wasn’t their first return to Belfast since then, stopping off in the city in 2015, but not since.

To the frustration of their Belfast fans, they made a visit to Dublin last year when touring their most recent album, The Stars, The Oceans and The Moon, an orchestral reworking of their greatest hits.

Fans in Belfast were treated to their greatest hits, but no orchestra, it was the crowd who provided the support, singing along to all of their favourites.

It was the weekend of Ian McCulloch’s 60th birthday, which took place two days after the concert, a section of the crowd signing Happy Birthday to him. I’m not sure if it was to celebrate his birthday. but he prepared for this gig with grub at Fish City.

It wasn’t the first time i’d seen a pop star on or around their birthday. In fact, it wasn’t even the first member of Echo and the Bunnymen, having seen them in Glasgow in 2013 the day after Will Sergeant’s birthday, when McCulloch got the crowd to sing Happy Birthday to him.

Outside of The Bunnymen, I saw The Kooks the day before Luke Pritchard’s 30th birthday in 2015.

Throughout the concert, McCulloch complained about having itchy feet, but that he wasn’t prepared to take his shoes off as it wasn’t a good look. Didn’t do Sandie Shaw any harm.

For some reason, some numpty in the crowd kept chanting “Pete De Frietas”. You know the sort, tedious bores who think they’re funny and that the band want to have “Banter” with them.

McCulloch corrected his pronunciation of “De Freetas” by pointing out it was “De Freytas”

Among the hits performed were Bedbugs and Ballyhoo, Rescue, Never Stop, Villiers Terrace, Nothing Lasts Forever, Seven Seas, The Killing Moon and The Cutter.

The version of Nothing Lasts Forever was a nice chilled out acoustic version of the song, one of a few songs which saw them deviate into snippets of covers of famous songs such as Jean Genie, Walk On The Wild Side, Don’t Let Me Down and Sex Machine

With so many big hits in the main set, it was interesting to see what they saved for the encore. They finished with Lips Like Sugar and Do It Clean.

Photo Album

Echo and the Bunnymen live at Mandela Hall 2015

Echo and the Bunnymen live at SECC 2013

Echo and the Bunnymen live at Custom House Square 2010

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THE FRIDAY FIVE – 3.5.2019

1. Gang Of Youths – What Can I Do Id The Fire Goes Out?
2. Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds – Black Star Dancing
3. Vampire Weekend – This Life
4. Echo and the Bunnymen – Bring On The Dancing Horses
5. Stereophonics – Chaos From The Top Down

MAGAZINE ARCHIVE : SMASH HITS – 23.10.1985

It’s a double sided issue of Smash Hits this week, with Arcadia on the cover on one side, and The Cult on the other.

Simon and Nick from Arcadia are interviewed. You may remember them more as Simon Le Bon and Nick Rhodes from Duran Duran.

Simon reveals he can fix a puncture on a bicycle, while Nick dyed his hair black to avoid attention.

Iron Maiden are interviewed, where they reveal they cry at lassie films, and quite like Wham!

Keith Chegwin is the subject of a Q and A, where he reveals that he borrow’s Sarah Green’s make-up.

As you turn the magazine around, there is an interview with Echo and the Bunnymen, back after a year off, and all four members tell Smash Hits what they were up to.

Cover stars The Cult get a double page interview.

Paul King, lead singer of King and future VH1 presenter reviews the singles, giving his vote for Best Single to The Fall.

In album reviews, Blancmange get 8 out 10, while Simple Minds only managed 7 out of 10.

MAGAZINE ARCHIVE : SMASH HITS – 3.1.1985

As 1985 starts, Wham! are the cover stars of Smash Hits, who join them on tour, stating that their fans enjoy their gigs than people who go to see Duran Duran, Culture Club and Spandau Ballet.

As you open the magazine, there is a poster of Adam Ant.

In news, Smash Hits launches an Australian version, to compliment the American version, which is known as Star Hits.

Ian McCullough of Echo and the Bunnymen is interviewed, as the band takes a year off.

There are three pages dedicated to Alannah Currie’s life story so far. You know, her from Thompson Twins.

Smash Hits joins Wham! on tour in Edinburgh, and Andrew Ridgeley dresses up for the occasion by wearing a tartan suit.

Concert Reviews sees Smash Hits go to see UB40, Howard Jones and Cocteau Twins.

2015 IN PICTURES – FEBRUARY

The start of February usually sees me head away somewhere, and this year saw me head to Barcelona for a short break.

While there, I toured the city, did a tour of the Nou Camp, got lots of Street Art pictures and went to two football matches

Upon my return from Barcelona, it was straight into Irish League action, to see Linfield take on Cliftonville at Windsor Park.

Four days later, I was headed to Stangmore Park, on my birthday, to see Linfield take on Dungannon Swifts, with Linfield giving me some birthday cheer by winning 3-0.

Three days later I was headed to Mandela Hall for the first time since 2011, for my first gig of 2015 – Echo and the Bunnymen.

A further three days after that, I was back at Windsor Park to see Linfield lose to Portadown.

The final day of the month saw me see Linfield take on Portadown again, this time in the Irish Cup, and at Shamrock Park. It was the same result though.

Barcelona

Barcelona Photo Album

Nou Camp Photo Album

Barcelona Street Art

Barcelona Street Art Photo Album 1

Barcelona Street Art Photo Album 2

Barcelona Street Art Photo Album 3

CE Europa v Masnau

CE Europa v Masnau Photo Album

Espanyol v Valencia

Espanyol v Valencia Photo Album

Linfield v Cliftonville

Dungannon Swifts v Linfield

Echo and the Bunnymen Live At Mandela Hall

Echo and the Bunnymen Live At Mandela Hall Photo Album

Linfield v Portadown

Portadown v Linfield

THE FRIDAY FIVE – 3.7.2015

1. James Bay – When We Were On Fire
2. The Staves – Teeth White
3. Olly Murs – Beautiful To Me
4. Friendly Fires – Jump In The Pool
5. Duran Duran – Pressure Off

And now, the first of two national celebrations. Wednesday was Canada. So, for my Canadian readers, here’s a chart for you.

FIVE SONGS BY CANADIAN ACTS

1. Tegan and Sara – Closer
2. Nelly Furtado – Do It Again
3. Barenaked Ladies – One Week
4. Celine Dion – It’s All Coming Back To Me Now
5. Appleton – Fantasy

And for their Southern neighbours, it’s Independence Day tomorrow. So, here’s a chart for you.

FIVE SONGS BY AMERICAN ARTISTS

1. REM – The Sidewinder Sleeps Tonite
2. Buffalo Tom – Going Underground
3. Madonna – Rain
4. Paramore – That’s What You Get
5. The Cars – My Best Friend’s Girl

And to finish, i’m going to see James in Edinburgh in August. Fifth time in a fifth different town (after Sheffield, Glasgow, Belfast and Bray) and i’m very excited about it.

It’s part of a Festival called Magners Summer Nights, a series of outdoor concerts in Glasgow and Edinburgh in August. If you’re going to it, here’s some songs to get you in the mood.

FIVE SONGS BY ACTS PERFORMING AT MAGNERS SUMMER NIGHTSS

1. James – She’s A Star
2. Echo and the Bunnymen – Nothing Lasts Forever
3. The Waterboys – The Whole Of The Moon
4. The Flaming Lips – Fight Test
5. Ben Folds – Battle Of Who Could Care Less

ECHO AND THE BUNNYMEN – LIVE AT MANDELA HALL 17.2.2015

One song in, Ian McCullough, wearing sunglasses indoors and shouting at the sound guys to give them “less feedback and more bollocks”, it was what you would call Classic McCullough.

After a five year absence from Belfast, Echo and the Bunnymen made a return to the city on Tuesday night, for a gig at Mandela Hall.

This was my third Bunnymen gig, not bad for a band I thought i’d never see play live.

The first time I saw them was in May 2010 at Custom House Square. My most recent time seeing them was in April 2013, supporting James at SECC in Glasgow.

The current Bunnymen line-up, is the duo of Ian McCullough and Will Sergeant, Les Pattinson having left after their late 90s comeback and drummer Pete De Frietas dying in 1989.

They were supported by touring musicians, a guitarist and bassist stood to the left of McCullough, and a drummer and keyboardist buried behind amps. You might have been able to see them, but you could hear them.

Sergeant was stood to McCullough’s right and was in his happy place, stood on his own playing guitar, it looked as though he had a different guitar for each song, such was his collection.

The setlist was heavily drawn from their 1980s hits such as Rescue, Never Stop, Bring On The Dancing Horses, Bedbugs & Ballyhoo, Killing Moon and The Cutter. One of their hits, Seven Seas saw Ian McCullough mimic somebody swimming. That is quite a big deal for someone who doesn’t do many onstage theatrics.

Villier’s Terrace saw the crowd be treated to an inpromptu cover of Jean Genie by David Bowie.

It wasn’t the only cover they smuggled into their set included Take A Walk On The Wild Side (Lou Reed) which they amended to include Belfast and Merseyside references, Don’t Let Me Down (The Beatles) and Summer Wind (Frank Sinatra)

One cover that was on the setlist, intentionally, was People Are Strange (The Doors), which they recorded for the soundtrack of The Lost Boys.

After a Killing Moon/The Cutter finale, the band headed off stage, before returning for an encore, performing Nothing Lasts Forever (a curious title for a comeback single after a ten year absence) and Lips Like Sugar, to a rapturous applause.

The venue lighting didn’t immediately come on, giving fans hope for a second encore. They waited, and waited, and waited, before some men appeared on stage. They were roadies, dismantling the stage.

It was the only time all night the fans were disappointed.

Photo Album

See Also

Echo and the Bunnymen Live At SECC 2013

Echo and the Bunnymen Live At SECC 2013 Photo Album

Echo and the Bunnymen Live At Custom House Square 2010

Echo and the Bunnymen Live At Custom House Square 2010 Photo Album

THE FRIDAY FIVE – 5.9.2014

1. Jamie T – Zombie
2. Twin Atlantic – Brothers and Sisters
3. Augustines – Weary Eyes
4. The Kooks – Forgive and Forget
5. George Ezra – Blame It On Me

Big gig news!!! Echo and the Bunnymen are coming to Belfast in February, after a five year absence. So, in celebration, here’s a Bunnymen Top Five

FIVE SONGS BY ECHO AND THE BUNNYMEN

1. Nothing Lasts Forever
2. It’s Alright
3. Bring On The Dancing Horses
4. Ticket To Ride
5. Bedbugs and Ballyhoo

Also this week, the line-up for Guinness Amplify was announced, a series of concerts and surprise concerts later this month which is not in any way similar to Arthur’s Day. Not in anyway whatsoever.

If there is a surprise concert in Belfast, i’m hoping it’s either Bastille or Ellie Goulding. Or both, and that I get a ticket. Here’s a Guinness Amplify playlist to get you in the mood.

FIVE SONGS BY ACTS APPEARING AT GUINNESS AMPLIFY

1. Bastille – Pompeii
2. Ellie Goulding – Anything Could Happen
3. Kodaline – High Hopes
4. George Ezra – Budapest
5. London Grammar – Strong

50 YEARS OF TOP OF THE POPS : AUG 1 – AUG 7

Hello and welcome to this week’s round-up from the TOTP archives. We start, near the start, in black and white times, with Amen Corner.

And now, some Garbage that shouldn’t be put in a bin.

This week’s sad bit. Pete De Frietas from Echo and the Bunnymen would have been 53 this week.

Which nicely links us into another Scouse band ………

And we end, with Geri Halliwell, not in anyway ripping off La Isla Bonita.

But before we go, RIP Mike Smith.