THE FRIDAY FIVE – 10.1.2020

1. Stereophonics – Don’t Let The Devil Take Another Day
2. Ash – Darkest Hour Of The Night
3. Harry Styles – Adore You
4. Tones and I – Dance Monkey
5. Sam Fender – Saturday

MAGAZINE ARCHIVE : MELODY MAKER – 22.12.1999

It’s a special Christmas edition of Melody Maker this week. Not only a new year coming up, but a new decade and a new century. It can only be 1999.

In news, Travis are doing homecoming gigs in Glasgow, and hoping to avoid playing large arenas, despite the success of their album The Man Who.

Justine Frischmann is subject of a Q and A, being asked to give her opinions on Blur and Suede’s new albums.

Meanwhile, The Charlatans have denied that their new single My Beautiful Friend is about Rob Collins, the band’s former Keyboardist who died in 1996.

There is an unscientific test of the bets Hangover TV, with SM:TV Live, Live and Kicking, T4 and Soccer AM all in contention.

There is a guide to the best Christmas TV, with Kevin The Teenager doing a guide to being a teenager being advised as “Don’t miss”

Naturally, 1999 gets reviewed, with a month by month look, as well as some of the best quotes.

There’s even a world exclusive interview with Santa Claus, conducted by Rick Witter from Shed Seven.

Metallica are interviewed about their perfect Christmas, declaring there is nothing more Christmassy than hardcore porn.

It wouldn’t be Christmas without a few drinks, and Melody Maker goes out to get drunk with the band A.

Meanwhile, Longpigs give a guide to the best Christmas food.

Cover stars Stereophonics are interviewed, declaring 1999 to be a brilliant year.

Roddy Woomble from Idlewild talks about his favourite films of 1999, including Fight Club and South Park, while Dermot O’Leary talks about TV in 1999 including Friends, Eastenders and Louis Theroux.

In a magazine full of lists, Head Music by Suede wins Best Album, while I Try by Macy Gray wins Best Single, ironically not becoming a massive hit until 2000.

In concert reviews, Melody Maker took a trip to Belfast to see Travis at the Waterfront Hall.

The magazine ends with a Q and A with Macy Gray where she reveals she laughs when people sing Happy Birthday to her, while Noddy Holder discusses the lyrics to Merry Xmas Everybody.

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

THE FRIDAY FIVE – 1.3.2019

1. Chvrches and BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra – Miracle
2. Talk Talk – Life’s What You Make It
3. KT Tunstall – Suddenly I See
4. Miley Cyrus – Nothing Breaks Like A Heart
5. Stereophonics – Chaos From The Top Down

Today, is St David’s Day, so I’ve got a treat for Welsh readers, a chart for you to celebrate your national day.

FIVE SONGS BY WELSH ACTS

1. Stereophonics – Dakota
2. Donna Lewis – I Love You Always Forever
3. Manic Street Preachers – Motorcycle Emptiness
4. Bonnie Tyler – Total Eclipse Of The Heart
5. The Automatic – Steve McQueen

2018 IN PICTURES – MARCH

March 2018 began for me photographing snow. Yes, you read that right, the snow came down in the early days of March 2018.

That snow caused the postponement of Linfield’s Irish Cup tie against Cliftonville, so I had to wait a week for my first football match of the month, as Linfield took on Carrick Rangers.

That was then followed up the following midweek by Linfield’s Irish Cup tie against Cliftonville.

Two days later, I headed to The Odyssey to see Stereophonics in concert.

St Patrick’s Day was spent watching Linfield draw 1-1 at home to Glentoran.

The following Thursday, I headed to The Limelight to see Feeder in concert.

Off work the next day due to needing to use up excess Annual Leave, I made the long journey to Ballinamallard to see Linfield drop two points in the last minute.

That weekend, and the month, ended with me heading to East Belfast to get photos of some new murals that had appeared during the month.

Belfast Snow March 2018

Belfast Snow March 2018 Photo Album – Thursday 1st March

Belfast Snow March 2018 Photo Album – Saturday 3rd March

Linfield v Carrick Rangers

Linfield v Cliftonville

Stereophonics live at The Odyssey

Stereophonics live at The Odyssey Photo Album

Linfield v Glentoran

Feeder live at The Limelight

Feeder live at The Limelight Photo Album

Ballinamallard United v Linfield

Northern Ireland v South Korea

Northern Ireland v South Korea Photo Album

East Belfast Street Art

East Belfast Street Art Photo Album

MAGAZINE ARCHIVE : MELODY MAKER – 13.9.2000

The Dum Dums are this week’s cover stars, declaring themselves as the voice of a generation. One of them has “4 Real?” painted on his body, as a tribute to Richey Edwards.

In news, Graham Coxon declares he has no problem with a Blur Greatest Hits album, while being non committal on new material by the band.

Limp Bizkit won at the MTV VMAs amidst chaos being created by Tim C from Rage Against The Machine.

Meanwhile, Stereophonics are discussing the details of their new album JEEP, due out in early 2001.

The Dum Dums get four pages of coverage, dismissing Green Day as old men.

It’s the Sexiest People In Rock Poll, with Hillary Woods from JJ72 and Kelly Jones from Stereophonics winning.

Dave Grohl didn’t get onto the Sexiest List, but he did get a three page interview.

In reviews, Melody Maker paid visits to see Limp Bizkit and Travis in concert.

In Singles Reviews, Maxim from The Prodigy gives his Single Of The Week Award to Smashing Pumpkins.

Shirley Manson is the subject of a Q and A, revealing that she was indecisive about getting on board an alien spaceship.

STEREOPHONICS – LIVE AT THE ODYSSEY 15.3.2018

Stereophonics have been around for a bit, thanking their Belfast fans for 20 years of support, during a concert that was two days after the 19th anniversary of their first Number One album, Performance and Cocktails.

Regular visitors to Belfast, this was their first indoor concert in Belfast since November 2013, but they have played Belsonic twice since then.

What you get now is a Greatest Hits set. It’s been that way for at least ten years. Let’s face it, who goes to a concert to watch a band perform obscure B-Sides?

They began with more recent classics such as Cest La Vie, I Wanna Get Lost With You and Caught By The Wind.

Caught By The Wind being the standout single released from most recent album Scream Above The Sounds, alongside All In One Night.

Both singles giving off an atmospheric 80s Den Henley vibe.

Don’t be mocking Don Henley, he’s the acceptable face of singing drummers. If they were sounding like Phil Collins, that would be a different matter.

Four songs in, they returned to their debut album, which Jones noted had been released 20 years ago, playing More Life In A Tramp’s Vest.

While the song played, the large screen behind them a compilation of home videos from the band’s early days, with both Kelly and Richard Jones (no relation) both sporting long hairdos. The much missed Stuart Cable sported the same style throughout his time with the band.

During those days, they were known as Tragic Love Company. They had enough video editing skills in them days to write a caption on the screen. Thankfully, they changed their name, as there is only space for one band called TLC.

They then moved onto a song they wrote in San Francisco called Have A Nice Day, though it sounds like Kelly Jones sings “Have an ass day”. It can’t be unheard.

That was then followed by my favourite Stereophonics song, Superman, performed with all the groove and swagger you heard on record.

It was a different stage from previous Stereophonics concerts. Rather than your traditional rock n roll stage design, this stage extended in the middle across the floor, to where the halfway line on the Ice Hockey pitch would be.

You can tell i’m not an expert in stage design. If you went to see U2 in 2015 or Muse in 2016 at The Odyssey.

I was stood at the end of the stage, meaning I had a decent view when they were there, and a decent view when they were in the more traditional rock n roll stage position.

Stagehands snuck some decorations onto that area as the band moved up there. It was dressed as a lounge, similar to that in the video for Handbags and Gladrags, one of the songs that was performed during this section.

Oh yes, there were plenty of lava lamps.

As the band walked over to their new home, we were treated to an instrumental cover of Sweet Home Alabama.

One of the highlights of this section was an acoustic version of Pick A Part That’s New.

That was one of many songs from the first two albums that were played in succession such as Just Looking, Traffic, A Thousand Trees, The Bartender And The Thief

By now, we were at the encore, which included Local Boy In The Photograph.

It looked like they were going to go through a concert without playing Dakota, as Kelly began playing some wandering notes on his guitar, before slowly singing the words “Made me feel like the one, made me feel like the one”.

Everybody in the venue sang it back at him.

They then burst into the version we all know and love. A fantastic tune, their only Number One. It was a good way to sign off.

Photo Album

Stereophonics live at Titanic Belfast June 2016

Stereophonics live at Custom House Square August 2015

Stereophonics live at The Odyssey November 2013

Stereophonics live at Waterfront Hall March 2013

Stereophonics live at Custom House Square August 2010