Gigs 1990

Sandkings tour

Leeds Venue  14/03/90

Royal Holloway College. Supporting The Corn Dollies and The Sandkings.  21/03/90  Glen, Dave and Terry from The Sandkings helped us with after gig dancefloor action. My favourite moment of the gig was the look of sheer incomprehension on one dancing girls face as one of the Wolverhampton wonders wooed her with the line "Yams a sexy dancer then."

Bournemouth Academy 27/03/90

Harlow Square Club

Reading After Dark


We supported The Sandkings at these shows promote For Niceness in  February /March 1990.  The Sandkings were brash and a lot more rock ‘n’ roll than we were. They were also more in love with the myth. They had toured with The WonderStuff and The Sandkings had attracted a similar audience. From our point of view this made the gigs harder work and difficult to engage the audience. Our set at the time veered from Doors lite psychedelia (Nearest Door) to rockier songs like Onionhead, the countrified Ruminating to the poppy New Order/Wedding Present sounding Mama Cow. Was this a rich and complex musical tapestry or just a band that hadn’t defined their own sound yet?

The Harlow gig was actually one of the best gigs we ever played. The place was rammed, the audience was keen and both bands went down really well. It was one of those nights when we knew after several songs that not only were we playing out of our skins, but also that we were doing it front of people who were interested. The stage was low and small. The Dexy’s Midnight Runners video for Geno has the band all squeezed onto a tiny low stage and, for me, that is how live music works best. It’s one thing for Aerosmith to duckwalk the length of an Olympic sized swimming pool but I’d sooner see the singer struggle to get a fag out of his pocket without knocking over the drumkit. (We also played several gigs where I would rather Jules had kept both his fags and harmonica in his pocket.)

The Reading gig was notable for us bumping Ride off the bill. The promoter wanted to put them on the bill above us, which would have meant us going on stage between the barstaff turning up for work and the doors opening. Ride lounged prettily in one corner of the venue and we sulked in the other. This Mexican standoff was eventually brought to a close when The Sandking’s manager stamped his feet (Like Blackheath’s answer to Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz, except I never saw Tommy in ruby slippers…more of a trainer boy) and Ride went home to a deal with Creation, some critical acclaim, Swedish girlfriends and a Saturday job in Oasis. We went back to BorehamWood and a night on the floor.

Glasgow College of Art. Supporting Lush. We never got to mingle with the much fancied (well two of them) ethereal liggers, but we did go for a beer with Sarah Records artistes The Orchids who were also on the bill. Not that there was much beer left in Glasgow after the thirsty (and excellent ) Orchids had popped out for a swiftie.

Dudley JB's.  16/03/90

Camden Falcon. Supporting The Telescopes

London Dingwalls Supporting The Telescopes

Birmingham University. Supporting Carter USM


Katydids tour

Bath Moles

Oxford Fire Station

Cambridge Junction

Norwich Arts Centre

Newcastle Riverside

Leeds Duchess of York

Manchester Boardwalk

Keele University

While we were supporting The Katydids for the 8 gigs listed above, the rest of the nation was supporting England in the World Cup.  The last gig of the tour was scheduled for Coventry Poly on the night of final.  We didn't play it.  I do remember Cambridge and Norwich being good though. 

London The Borderline. Supporting Faith Over Reason. An important gig for us, with press and industry types in the audience. Predictably that was the night we weren’t very good.

London Subterrania with The Bluebirds . It was a heady enough thought to be playing under the Westway for any old Clash fan (and Onionhead had 3). A great gig for me and really enjoyed The Bluebirds.

London New Cross Venue supporting Soul Asylum

Birmingham Burberries Supporting Blur She’s So High had just come out. I thought we were good that night but hated Blur. In fact we were close to celebrity scrapping after Blur’s art wank support band The Keatons (art terrorists with dancers) manhandled The Four Strings Of Love (aka my bass) and Alex James implied that Nick had lost his athletic physique to a diet of Bombay mix. Keaton Rhodri Marsden plays with Scritti Politti now and Nick is still working on a project involving Bombay Mix. We supported Blur again as Tenderloin in 1993 when they were fantastic. We were pretty good that night as well.

Liverpool Planet X. The gig was organised by Sean’s brother Dalton. As we unloaded the gear the venue’s soundman commented that it was the first time anyone had brought decent equipment in there.

Telford. An open air benefit for Shelter. The DJ had only brought one record and unfortunately it was Phil Collins Another Day In Paradise. After hearing it 30 times I found that I hated the record and realised that I had been correct to dislike all his other works too. So not a wasted day then. We were the penultimate band and we finished with Buffalo Springfield’s For What It’s Worth. When the next band went on, there was a power surge which blew the PA and their backline. We’d had a narrow escape…the DJ was lining up Phil Collins again

Oxford Jehrico Tavern

Birmingham Poly With Elizabeth Jane, Gerry Colvin and Abaccus

Coventry Tic Toc Club.  Follow the link for the Sounds review

East London Poly

Tamworth Rathole

Gigs 86 to 88        Gigs 89      Gigs 91


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