Filling the void

OK so I can't compete with you London types but a quick skim tells me the fllowing are playing this autumn at Birmingham's finest venue, the Hare & Hounds in Kings Heath, less than 5 minutes from my house: Keston Cobblers Club, RM Hubbert, Tunng, Lanterns on the Lake, Euros Childs, Sweet Baboo and Dutch Uncles. A short trip into town and at the Institute there's Everything Everything, Steve Mason, Public Service Broadcasting, Half Moon Run and Stornoway. And no clashes.

Strand of Oaks returns to Omeara, London on 7 Feb 2020.

Having missed hime in May at least it's not too long to wait for a return visit.

just announced a new record - out nov 1st

and some shows in feb / mar

two in london at the round chapel, on sale now - SEE tickets and DICE

then bristol, birmingham, glasgow, manchester, dublin, brighton, liverpool - also all appear to be on sale now

Black Country New Road, last night in a packed local venue, supported by my son's band. Enjoyed them more at GM, mainly because I couldn't really hear his vocals last night, but a fine night all the same.

So excited.

Albert Hall is a fab venue to see my favourite musician.

He seems to be getting great reviews.

Vetiver/Andy Cabic solo tour:

12/6 - Sheffield Students' Union - Sheffield, UK
12/7 - 81 Renshaw - Liverpool, UK
12/8 - YES - Manchester, UK
12/9 - The Old Cinema Launderette - Durham, UK
12/10 - Sneaky Pete's - Edinburgh, UK
12/11 - Mono - Glasgow, UK
12/13 - Headrow House - Leeds, UK
12/14 - The Cuban Embassy - Birmingham, UK
12/15 - The Brunswick - Brighton, UK
12/16 - Rough Trade - Bristol, UK
12/17 - O2 Academy2 Islington - London, UK

yeah - posted up about this a while back, i think

still can't get my head around that terrible choice of venue in london

and that stage is going to seem even less appropriate now that the uk dates have been announced as andy solo

mostly all metal in that room usually - and it's in a shopping centre!

hey ho

still not missing it!

Very enjoyable BC gig last night.

Took ages to get into Manchester... I blame fleeing Tory Boys for a chunk of the city centre being cordoned off to prevent them coming into contact with us unwashed northerners .

Sound was poor where I was sitting upstairs so I  moved downstairs and stood at the back... not my natural habitat, being surrounded by gig talkers, but the sound was great.

He did a lot off his latest album, natch, including the beautiful Angela, 6 or 7 classic Bill tracks... Eid Ma Clack, America, Jim Cain, Rock Bottom Riser, Drover.... and a David Berman cover.

His voice was, as ever, extraordinary.

Not the greatest BC gig I've been to, probably down to my own poor positioning choices, but nonetheless still unmissable. 

Thanks for that Elizabeth .. useful information for the London contingent tonight.

Glad you managed to enjoy it despite the venue limitations.

At least you were dry this time!

Me too, not looking forward to the bus replacement service on the way home though, a friend was down on Monday, didn't get back until 2am...

are you home yet, smithers?

didn't realise you were going to be there

you should have come for a jar with me and peridot beforehand!

Got back at 3.15 this morning ray, a tortuous 4hr journey around Hertfordshire and Cambridgeshire. Worth it though. Came with some friends and my son, had a couple of pints in the bar and looked out for you two but no sign, no doubt you were drinking better and cheaper elsewhere.

ah, shame

we were in a bizarre new-build pub called the blue ship, down on the river

Meanwhile, back down south, tonight will be my first ever visit to Bedford for a band that GM should be all over for next year - The Murder Capital.

I’m looking forward to seeing Murder Capital at Sŵn in a fortnight, though a shame their set clashes with Audiobooks. Going to be a busy day on the Sunday starting off with Dry Cleaning in the afternoon. From there on there a pretty good run in Clwb, though I’d like to see Working Men’s Club which is a bit of a trek from Womanby Street to Jacobs. I didn’t see Scalping at Green Man either, so might try and squeeze them in to my schedule, though I suspect Clwb might get busy for Squid, so might have to skip that. 

I'm also going to be at Swn on the Sunday, with a similar sort of dilemma.  While there is also much that I would like to see (including Dry Cleaning and Working Men's Club) that is not in Clwb, I think Squid followed by Murder Capital will likely be rammed.  So need to be in there well before Squid. And re. The Murder Capital, I've just seen them the last 2 nights (in Bedford as part of their headline tour, and Ipswich in a multi-venue evening fest), and absolutely catch them now while they still in the small venues, because they won't be next year; as exciting a band as you could wish to see.  So somehow last night, Ipswich - not a place known for hosting much great music - managed to host my 2 favourite live bands right now, the other being WH Lung, who just seem to get better and better.  And before Cardiff and Swn and The Murder Capital again on the Sunday, it will be Bristol and Simple Things and WH Lung again on the Saturday. Can't wait. What a great thing these day fests are.

Not my favourite thing of the [insert relevant timescale here].

The anticipation of seeing him at Albert Hall outsripped the eventual experience.

Hey ho

I wonder whether the Albert Hall was a bit too big a venue for BC.

I also found some of the live interpretations of his classic tracks a bit rangey and random.

I feel disloyal even saying this though.

Worked at Hammersmith I thought, a great evening. Really liked the pyschedelic edge the band gave to some of the tunes. Quite different to the other two times I've seen him but equally impressive.

yeah. Didn’t love it. though in fairness that guitarist made a lovely lovely noise

And like Elisabeth I also headed to the back downstairs 2/3 way through to find myself listening to some fucking fascinating conversations (ffs).


i thought it was the best time i've ever seen him

the sound was pristine (first time that's happened for me in the hangar-like apollo)

and, having not been completely overwhelmed by the latest record, i felt those songs became transcendent live

2 hours went by in a heartbeat

absolutely transfixed, i was

the band are astonishing

and bill in rare form

the banter with the audience was top class, i thought, too

"you're great, bill."

"aw, thanks."  (beat)  "i've been wondering."

I'm so glad you enjoyed it, Ray.

I think it was probably just me with unreasonable expectations.

Matt Kinsey's guitar echos Bills voice beautifully, doesn't it? 

yeah - he's doing some lovely things with just drone and decay

not strictly 'playing' - just letting the guitar make noise

(i'm sure he wouldn't see it that way!  and no doubt could school me to the point of confusion on why this is exactly the wrong way to describe it!)

funny - i'd always thought of gibson SGs as kind of crappy 'rock' guitars

until i saw will oldham play one

so maybe it's a drag city / domino thing!

i thought the rest of the band were superb though too

i usually hate those ultra-modern looking instruments - and when i saw that double bass my heart sank a bit

was this going to be a prog rock night?

but he played so understatedly - really simple (again, sure he'd contradict me!) lines - not showy at all - just perfect for the music

and that drummer!

those strange little things he'd do - like a sudden double crack of rim shot in the middle of nowhere - not accenting any shift in the song structure - but seemingly to kind of snap your mind back to attention

bill's no slouch on that beaten up old acoustic either!

i thought the whole quartet was magical

Crappy rock guitars?!

The SG is the king of guitars

As played the great and late lamented Deke Leonard and Micky Jones

And if you say they played in a crap rock band you'll have me to answer to

And cyfarthfa!

oh, and what about that cover of 'trains across the sea'?

"half hours on earth, what are they worth?"

"in 27 years, i've drunk 50,000 beers

and they just wash against me, like the sea into a pier..."

came over all unnecessary, i did...

You lot and your gigs eh?

Was hoping to get to Toby Hay's album launch in Rhayader but have to take my lad to his cricket club awards evening!

Stuff in Birmingham I probably won't get to in coming weeks: Robyn Hitchcock, Tiny Ruins (opening for Badly Drawn Boy - would they let me in for half price if I promised to leave in the interval?), Tallest Man on Earth/Julie Byrne, Steve Mason/Pictish Trail, Lankum, Hiss Golden Messenger (determined not to miss this one!), James Yorkston's annual Kitchen Garden Cafe Xmas show (as per HGM)


Not picked up a ticket for HGM yet. Still trying to decided whether to go to Brum or Leeds.

What's the H&H like, people of Birmingham?

Bill R-J on Sunday at Band on the Wall for us.

Damien Jurado next Feb too, again can't decide where to see him.

The Hare & Hounds is the best live venue in Birmingham.

I saw HGM there a fewyears ago touring Lateness of Dancers. Support act was a curly-haired bloke doing gospelly songs on his own and he was bloody brilliant. Then there he is playing keys with HGM. My introdction to the legend that is Phil Cook.

I'm guessing HGM will be in the larger of the two rooms (they were in the smaler last time) so doubt if it will selll out.

Pre-gig the H&H itself is a decent boozer. Just down the High Street and around a corner is a superb Lebanese take-away (with a couple of tables inside) that does fantastic shawarmas.

H&H is on the corner of the high street and York Road. Some great eateries on York road particularly Byzantium (Middle Eastern and tapas) and Syllhet Spice (Bengali)

Arrive early enough and you can pop in to Polar Bear Records and have a chat with Steve.

Kitchen Garden Cafe - where JY will be playing is across the road fromm the H&H.

Cheers Kras.

Are you going? I need to persuade Mr Mc that another gig before xmas is money well spent.

Bill Ryder Jones at Band on the Wall was absolutely beautiful last night. He was solo with a grand piano and a Gibson (which sounded gorgeous to my untrained ear) he doesn't play unnecessary notes.

Lovely funny and self-effacing interaction with the audience, including a gentle rebuke to one slightly enthusiastic audience member to be quiet at the beginning, which set the tone for the evening... you could hear a pin drop throughout.



was bummed to have to miss this in london

he did two tiny shows in a church

but the first was the same night as the allah-las - and the second the same night as bill callahan

i'd say next time - but not sure he'll do it stripped down like this again

Will prob buy tickets to see Vetiver as well, for Sheffield (with son two) or Mcr.

Manchester Baroque before that!! at St Anne's Church in the City Centre, reconstruction of 1744 Musick in Manchester....stick that in ur pipe



Sam Amidon for me tomorrow night at the National Concert Hall, Dublin. 

Just heard Marc Ribot will be on stage with him. 



NCH eh Slugger? You've trumped us on the posh venues there .. enjoy.

Loved Bill in Hammersmith. As ray_rad highlighted the unexpectedly perfect sound quality added a whole extra dimension. However I too am finding the new material to be lacking something and even live did not enjoy it quite as much as his earlier oeuvre.

Sorry to hear you won't make it to Toby Hay Krasnyi. With the weather looking iffy I decided not to make a weekend of it but will still pop up this evening and avail of their car park for an overnight nap.

Then Fionn Regan next up on Monday .. excited for that, not least as it offers another chance to see the ridiculously resplendent Mr ray_rad

their Manchester show is in a church in Salford, st peters. Has anyone been?  I’ve not been aware of any there before, but clearly there must have been some. I have a thing for gigs in proper churches; I saw abdullah ibrahim at Mcr cathedral 30 years ago and was hooked from there. So, I’ll be heading off there to see wvfts in Feb. 

I think the church in Salford is where Jason Lytle played earlier this year. It was pretty decent - the sound was spot on for Jason Lytle and I can imagine AWFTS working well in there. Free parking in the roads around it and a makeshift bar on a paste table at the back. Only a couple of toilets though.

I think it's in St.Phillips not St.Peters and it has a really good sound-watched Wooden Shjips in there and they had a little real ale bar at the back of the church