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May 4, 2007

Tales Of Middle Earth… By Blue Peter (who wrote this having drunk four cups of tea yet not having visited the toilet)

Filed under: editorial, authors, Blue Peter — bluepeter @ 2:41 pm

There’s probably been loads going on in the Midlands lately. Absolutely loads… There was a Battle of the Bands in my hometown of Worcester. I know that for sure. I don’t, however, know who won it. In fact, for all I know the final was postponed due to the ghost of Sir Edward Elgar himself appearing on The Marr’s Bar stage and puking ectoplasmic bile over the punters whilst gently tugging himself off and murmuring, “No shame.” This could have happened. The point is that I just don’t know and the reason for my not knowing is that, apart from the odd game of chess with the landlord of my local (current tally one-all, everything to play for), I’ve been bunkered down in my bedroom working on AWWBLOT’s debut album.

At the end of last year the organisation that is AWWBLOT found itself in a tricky situation. Redundancy and personal problems had led to the band having no money and, due to getting stung by the industry earlier in the year, no direction. We did have a load of pretty good songs though. We were sure of that. So we went to the pub and pretty quickly decided to fuck it all off and record an album anyway, with or without industry support. In order to cut costs we’d do it ourselves (Chris Them is, after all a named producer on Steve Harley The Cockney Rebel’s last album!) and spend money on getting it mastered at the end. Oh how joyous the idea was! Oh how lovely!

Finally we’d bitten the bullet; the plan was good. We were going to take on the DIY ethos whole-heartedly! Good, good and very good! This plan was going to work and, sitting in Monroe’s Cellar Bar supping on our light ales, heavenly warmth filled our bodies. Fast forward four months and it’s a f*cking living nightmare. I have no idea how many cigarettes we’ve smoked but my lungs feel like lead. Chris is having a daily aneurism as things that worked the night before aren’t working the day after and James Perry (our lovely pal who stepped in for engineering duties) has taken to telling us that he hates us every single time we speak. Half the album doesn’t have bass or keys. There is only one song with vocals (boy vocals that is, Red, our girl singer, hasn’t even heard a note yet…)

The drums were finished in three nights yet it has taken over two and a half months to finish the guitars. I have been living in Groundhog Day. Every morning I awake hung-over. I go to work. I finish work. I pick up Chris. We go to mine. James arrives. We record another f*cking guitar line. Chris tells me it’s out of time. Repeat scenario by 15. I begin to cry. Chris plays guitar line himself to show me how to do it. It is spot on. We record Chris doing guitar line that I was incapable of. Chris and James leave. I drink.

However, the guitars are now done and tonight is the second night of working on vocals. Soon Joe will finish his bass lines. Matt will finish his keyboards. Red will sing. It appears there is light at the end of the tunnel but I can only go on trust.

PS. If anyone wants to appear on the album. Go “woop woop!” into a recording device, e-mail me the sound on pete_of_them@hotmail.com and we will try and plaster it in somewhere. Or, don’t. Perhaps just eat a cake and send us the sounds of that. I’m sure we’ll use it.

Blue Peter is in And What Will Be Left Of Them? and Girls On Film.

April 2, 2007

Tales Of Middle Earth… By Blue Peter (who wrote this drunk)

Filed under: music, editorial, authors, Topics, Blue Peter — bluepeter @ 2:42 pm

Although it lays me open to ridicule, I am a great believer that if Worcester were a suburb of London rather than a small city 25 miles south of Birmingham, then the music industry would right now be aghast at the quality of bands the city both produces and attracts to play. Worcester is metaphorically on fire and, to prove my point, here is a mere snapshot of just three consecutive days in February:
WEDNESDAY – Untitled Musical Project, one of the most exciting bands ever to have existed, are in town to delight all at the new Bosa Nova venue with their witty scattergun punk stabs. In support are the local scene’s brightest new rock’n’roll stars Zebedy Rays, who play with so much passion and energy they are greeted by their fans like the Second Coming these days, which is odd because on –
THURSDAY – They play their second gig of the week at The Marr’s Bar in support of New York based sex-rocker Lord Bishop Rocks. The local lads are greeted with as much excitement as when their fans last saw them only 24 hours earlier. As an entire bottle of Jack Daniels is shared out amongst bands and the crowd alike, our thoughts turn to the fact that we have got to do this all over again on:
FRIDAY – Abdoujaparov, the new band of Les ‘Fruitbat’ Carter (ex-Carter USM), are in town and they’ve brought the entire London Mafia with them. Pop-Art’s own Dom is on bass guitar duties and, in support, are the capital’s Subliminal Girls, musical magpies of the highest and most wonderful order. Offering local support is a young group called The Hoax who effortlessly mix the vocal slurrings of The Fall with upbeat pop aesthetics to make them serious contenders.
The night, and the week, however belong to Abdoujaparov. The moment the Abdoujaparov Theme kicks in, Fruitbat is forced to watch in amazement as his own audience invade the stage, kick him off and slaughter the song. If only every gig ended with this much fun, energy and excitement, we could harness its power to run our local Sauce Factory.
Untitled Musical Project – http://www.myspace.com/untitledmusicalproject
Zebedy Rays – http://www.myspace.com/zebedyrays
Abdoujaparov – http://www.myspace.com/idou2
Subliminal Girls – http://www.myspace.com/subliminalgirls
The Hoax – http://www.myspace.com/thisisnotahoax

Blue Peter is in And What Will Be Left Of Them? and Girls On Film

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