THE FRIDAY FIVE – 20.9.2019

1. Pet Shop Boys ft Olly Alexander – Dreamland
2. Freya Ridings – Castles
3. Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds – This Is The Place
4. The Cars – My Best Friend’s Girl
5. Edwyn Collins – A Girl Like You

Stereophonics and Pet Shop Boys announcing concerts with no Belfast gig. Flip sake.

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EDWYN COLLINS – LIVE AT STRANGE VICTORY 15.9.2019

Just putting it out there, all concerts should come with cake and tea on arrival.

That was what greeted me upon arrival at Stange Victory, where Edwyn Collins was doing a live instore afternoon gig before appearing at The Empire later that evening.

If you don’t know where Stange Victory is, walk towards Virgin Megas ……. what do you mean Virgin Megastore isn’t there any more?

Walk towards where Virgin Megastore was, and then turn left before you get to where Virgin Megastore was. Then you’ll find Strange Victory, and independent music store.

Starting a few minutes late due to the volume of fans wanting photos, autographs and everything inbetween, every request was honoured.

Not realising his mic was on, Collins accidentally broadcast his conversation to the crowd, it was nothing juicy or scandalous, he then asked for a glass of water, stating that it was thirsty work.

It was ironic, that he had a very dry sense of humour, commenting every time a member of his band introduced what song would be next.

Unsurprisingly, the setlist mostly comprised of songs from his new album Badbea, which he encouraged people to buy, even though he is against the commercialisation of rock n roll.

To be honest, I only really knew three songs by Edwyn Collins, none of which were played, not that it mattered.

A Girl Like You, undisputed banging tune. You can play air guitar to that song but not headbang, just strut and pose.

The Magic Piper Of Love, from the first Austin Powers movie, which wasn’t a massive hit, though it should have been.

And then, Rip It Up by Orange Juice, thanks to Top Of The Pops 2 for introducing it to me.

Of course, I managed to keep up my concert tradition of bumping into Linfield supporters, having a conversation about the previous day’s match as I left.

Not a bad way to spend a Sunday afternoon, and it was especially enjoyable for Collins, who was presented with a cake by the store as he left

Photo Album

THE FRIDAY FIVE – 6.9.2019

1. Freya Ridings – Castles
2. The Courteeners – Heavy Jacket
3. Catfish and the Bottlemen – Conversation
4. Liam Gallagher – One Of Us
5. Marina – Karma

So, um, sorry for forgetting to do The Friday Five for about a month, I’ve been a bit busy. Hopefully, normal service will resume again.

THE FRIDAY FIVE – 5.7.2019

1. Bastille – Joy
2. Mark Ronson ft King Princess – Pieces Of Us
3. Blossoms – Your Girlfriend
4. Liam Gallagher – The River
5. Sam Fender – Hypersonic Missiles

Been catching up with Glastonbury highlights all week. Tame Impala are a bit decent, aren’t they?

Apologies, I forgot that it was Canada Day last Monday. So, to make up for it, here’s a chart.

FIVE SONGS BY CANADIAN ACTS

1. Celine Dion – It’s All Coming Back To Me
2. K’naan – Wavin Flag
3. Nelly Furtado – All Good Things
4. Carly Rae Jepsen – Run Away With Me
5. Arcade Fire – Everything Now

And apologies to the Muricans, as I forgot that it was Independence Day yesterday.

FIVE SONGS BY AMERICAN ACTS

1. Billy Joel – We Didn’t Start The Fire
2. Tom Petty – Freefallin
3. Prince – Gold
4. Madonna – The Power Of Goodbye
5. Hall and Oates – Family Man

THE FRIDAY FIVE – 28.6.2019

1. Blossoms – Your Girlfriend
2. Liam Gallagher – The River
3. Sam Fender – Hypersonic Missiles
4. Kaiser Chiefs – People Know How To Love One Another
5. Of Monsters And Men – Alligator

Liam Gallagher’s tour in November doesn’t include Belfast. I really hope it’s not because he’s being lined up for Belsonic 2020. Flip sake.

THE FRIDAY FIVE – 7.6.2019

1. Billie Eilish – Bury A Friend
2. Liam Gallagher – Shockwave
3. Lewis Capaldi – Grace
4. Feeder – Save Us
5. Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds – Rattling Rose

So, are you all excited? Tonight is The Story Of 1988 on BBC Four. So, to get you in the mood ahead of that and the next year of Top Of The Pops repeats, here’s a chart for you.

FIVE SONGS FROM 1988

1. Jane Weidlin – Rush Hour
2. U2 – Angel Of Harlem
3. Ofra Haza – Im Nin Alu
4. Desireless – Voyage Voyage
5. Kylie Minogue – I Should Be Lucky

It appears that yesterday was Sweden’s National Day. I only found out after their promotional bus was packing up outside Belfast City Hall. So here’s some Swedish songs for you

FIVE SONGS BY SWEDISH ACTS

1. Europe – The Final Countdown
2. Roxette – Joyride
3. The Cardigans – Lovefool
4. Ace Of Base – The Sign
5. Emilia – Big Big World

FEEDER – LIVE AT HOLYWOOD RUGBY CLUB (HOLYWOOD HARMONY) 1.6.2019

So, I went to North Down’s big concert.

No not that one, the one the following Saturday, as Feeder performed at Holywood Rugby Club as part of Holywood Harmony.

If you don’t know, Holywood Harmony is a relatively new music festival taking place in Holywood, funnily enough, usually in the first weekend of June.

Getting there was easy, I decided to drive though the train was also available as an option, and managed to get parked at a Public Car Park a five minute walk from the venue.

Holywood is one of my semi regular cycling routes, so I know my way about the town, so I knew how to find the venue easily enough. If you do visit Holywood any time soon, may I recommend you visit The Cove, which is an absolutely fantastic retro/vintage store.

It’s good that there are concerts and events in Northern Ireland outside of Belfast. Even though Belfast concerts are convenient for me, it’s good to see something different in the concert listings.

I arrived at the venue at around 8pm, so I missed Dea Matrona, which was a pity as I’ve seen some videos of their songs and they sound decent.

Fun Lovin Criminals were only a couple of minutes into their set when I arrived.

They are a band who are a bit background music to me. If they were on the radio I wouldn’t turn them down, but I might not turn them up. If they were the headline act and Feeder the main support, I might have headed home after Feeder’s set.

That sounds like I think they’re rubbish, that’s not true, they’ve done some decent tunes.

Curiously, I won their 2001 album Loco in a competition on a website.

Huey told the crowd that their Puerto Rican groove was keeping the rain away, blaming Flybe for a slight spittle of raindrops after one of their aicrafts flew over the venue.

The set wasn’t without difficulties, as a power failure saw them have to leave the stage for a few minutes, only for more technical difficulties which saw the microphones not working.

Huey’s interaction with the crowd that we did hear included him bigging up Feeder, a bit of mutual appreciation between the bands with Grant Nicholas returning the favour, bigging up Fun Loving Criminals, as well as complimenting “The three girls” who were on earlier, that being Dea Matrona.

Huey also started a diplomatic incident with shoutouts to Belfast.

Thoughts and prayers are with the Postman or Postwoman whose route covers his house, as he will be bombarded with angry letters from people pointing out that Holywood is in North Down and East Belfast and that they’ll never sell their house for £1m if people think they live in East Belfast.

I think somebody might have briefed Grant Nicholas behind the scenes as he did shout outs to Holywood during his set, although there were occasional slips where he referred to being in Belfast.

In previous years, this festival had been held in a tent, but this year was the first year it became an outdoor event. I’d bought my ticket on the basis that this would be in a tent, so it was disheartening when I discovered it would be outdoors.

Not because of the weather, but because of you know what, or rather, you know who.

As with any outdoor event in Northern Ireland, it was infested with absolute fucking tramps on the fags and vapes, Stewards as well, so my hopes of some clean air while enjoying Feeder were zero.

Yep, it’s still an epidemic and a battle we are losing. Disgracefully, it’s a battle we as a society don’t even seem interested in winning.

Demand better. I’ve seen that plastered on election posters the past two months. That’s what i’m doing. Hopefully, the newly elected council line-ups will be making it a priority during this forthcoming term.

Because of this, I have absolutely no enthusiasm for outdoor concerts. I’m letting the bastards win. I shouldn’t do this but I have no choice. My heart sinks when someone I like announces an outdoor show in Belfast. I either give it a miss, or go and be surrounded by scum like that.

Thankfully, The Killers are flogging an album from two years ago, so I won’t feel bad about giving their Ormeau Park concert a miss, especially as they played Belfast in November 2017 when promoting that album.

Thankfully, the rest of Belsonic, George Ezra aside, is shite, so no loss there. And as George Ezra hasn’t released new material since his last Belfast concert means giving his Belfast concert a miss will be no loss.

Grown adults who smoke or vape should be made to explain themselves. Seriously, how do you have such a lack of self awareness to be so smelly and not be embarrassed by it?

The fact that people who should be told to fuck off are emboldened and empowered to strut about like they own the place should be a bit of an indicator that we have failed as a society.

Surely i’m not the only one who feels this way? I can’t be the only one who thinks that this should not be normal or acceptable.

Come on folks, let’s be better than that.

One good thing about this concert was that there was a second stage at the other end of the pitch which had performers during the gap between acts on the main stage, which was a good way of killing time.

Feeder came on stage and belted out their hits, a lot of jumping up and down was done during Buck Rogers, with Grant Nicholas saying that he did a session on the radio with Gerry Kelly who he described as a legend.

For clarity, that’s the ex UTV guy and not the guy who parks where he likes outside gyms.

There were problems with the stage lights during Feeder’s set, sometimes the lights flickered, came on and then off, with Grant Nicholas explaining that this was due to a generator blowing.

Thankfully, I was relatively close enough to the stage (not right beside it, but still a decent view) so I was still able to see them during the lighting issues.

Coming on later than scheduled meant there was no time for an encore so they had to make up the time by blasting through as many songs as possible.

Nicholas asked the song for a request, he knew that they wanted, and teased the opening riff to Just A Day, which is what the band signed off on.

With a new album out in August, Nicholas promised a Belfast concert when they tour that album.

Of course, last week was Snow Patrol’s homecoming concert at Ward Park in Bangor. I didn’t go to it. I like some songs by them but not enough to spend all day in a field in the pishing rain surrounded by smelly tramps on the fags or vapes.

This week, it was announced they will be performing at The Duncairn Centre as part of Other Voices visit to Belfast (their second visit to Belfast)

If you don’t know, Other Voices is RTE’s flagship music show, a random blend every week, filmed in Dingle but they sometimes go on trips around the world to film in other cities. You should give it a try if you get the chance.

I’ve applied for tickets to be in the audience, so wish me luck.

I was hoping that The Divine Comedy would be doing an instore gig at HMV ahead of the release of their new album, like they did in 2016.

As yet, nothing has been announced.

If not, then my next scheduled concert isn’t until October, then it’s a bit of a cluster, with The Divine Comedy, OMD and Two Door Cinema Club all in the diary.

And maybe, i’ll look at John Power in Warrenpoint if Linfield are away to Warrenpoint Town that day.

Photo Album

Feeder live at The Limelight 2018

Feeder live at The Limelight 2016