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Video of the Moment #1657: Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds

By on Saturday, 25th October 2014 at 10:00 am

After selling out his next tour in record time, Noel Gallagher is offering up this new video from his High Flying Birds venture. ‘In the Heat of the Moment’ (not to be confused by the song by Asia) will be released as as single on the 17th of November and will feature on the next High Flying Birds album, ‘Chasing Yesterday’, out on the 2nd of March 2015.



Jersey Live 2012 (Part 2)

By on Friday, 14th September 2012 at 2:00 pm

Chase and Status were an act who I always saw as a bit of a ‘Pendulum lite’, but with the formers now disbanded and forgotten, it seems only right that the heirs to the festival drum and bass throne can now step up and grasp the opportunity.

And they did, playing a hit-laden set dripping with their signature electronic hooks to close out Saturday at Jersey Live 2012. The MCs whipped up the crowd into a frenzy, with mosh pits breaking out all over the relatively small crowd. They’re no longer DJs; they’re a full-on festival band, more then capable of turning a placid muddy field into a swirling, sweaty arena of noise.

To top of their festival credentials they even tore through roaring cover of Rage Against the Machine’s protest anthem ‘Killing in the Name Of’. The roof (or lack of thereof, so maybe the clouds…) was suitably raised.

The Sunday was more for the golden oldies in us, with legendary acts like Primal Scream, The Stranglers and Noel Gallagher gracing the Main Stage.

The short skirted booze swilling teens disappeared to be replaced by an army of mid-life crisis mums doing that embarrassing dance which you only normally find at those awkward family gatherings that never end well.

The first notable act of the day though were New Yorkers Friends, who are riding on the popularity wave of their Lucky Number debut album ‘Manifest!’ And obviously revelling in every minute of it.

The crowd at Jersey Live weren’t interested though, as their rollicking set was met by little more than sombre applause and the even more offensive sitting on rugs and drinking of Pimms.

Singles ‘Friend Crush’ and ‘I’m His Girl’ were fantastic in their delivery, but the mid-afternoon crowd were simply uninterested, it seems. Kudos to the band for pulling out the stops though, as even with the poor reception, the band gave it their all. (7/10)

The Stranglers provoked an altogether different reaction, with a wave of nostalgia coming over the stoic Jersey Live crowd. Baz Warne fronted the band and was simply awesome, even if at times he did come across more akin to a drunk, embarrassing dad crooning at a wedding.

The hits were all there though, in their aged splendour and fans young and old alike joined forces in their approval of these legends of the scene. (8/10)

Next up the big guns came out, Primal Scream, who are witnessing some sort revival, so much so that they supported the Stone Roses at Heaton Park. Bobby Gillespie marauded around the stage with youthful swagger, looking more like a 21st century Mick Jagger than the ageing rock icon.

They smashed through the highlights of their bulging back-catalogue. Gillespie was the highlight of the show though; he ran the stage with his rock and roll personality and certainly got the crowds rocks off.

To close the festival though, we went from born again legend to bonafide legend, in the form of Noel Gallagher. We can talk about his High Flying Birds, but this set was all about the man himself.

He strolled on stage; resplendent in his long coat at proceeded to show Jersey the set of their lives. He was cool, calm and collected. He even engaged in a bit of banter with the fans, rebuking a fan in a vest for asking for a Liam song. Why bother? He’s music royalty, sit back and enjoy the ride.

As for the spider he brought along in his guitar case… Best to ignore that.


Preview: Jersey Live 2012

By on Monday, 6th August 2012 at 9:00 am

Want big bands, but without the classic British weather? Too poor for Benicassim or Heineken Open’er? Well then, Jersey Live (1-2 September 2012) is the festival for you.

Jersey Live started off in 2007 as a small festival on the Channel Island of Jersey and has grown into one of the most widely attended boutique festivals in the world. It’s already attracted some huge names for a festival still in its relative infancy, including dance rock titans The Prodigy, who I can personally admit brought one of the best shows Jersey has seen, as well as indie rockers Kasabian and kings of ska Madness. This year, the line-up yet again is not one that will disappoint, with headliners in the form of Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds and commercial dubstep heroes Chase and Status (pictured at top).

The headliners, though, aren’t the only attraction. While there may not be any camping, the small size of the island means that hungover morning sightseeing trips are popular, to attractions like the world-famous Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust and Jersey Zoo, or the island’s many beautiful sandy beaches.

The event has a capacity for 10,000 people, so don’t expect a barren festival site. Instead at Jersey Live, there is a variety to entertain, including a great silent disco and a dance tent which has year after year kept the party going long after the music stops.

The acts joining the headliner aren’t to be sniffed at either, with Brighton born Rizzle Kicks, Eminem lite Professor Green, veterans Primal Scream and crooner Maverick Sabre adding heft to the bill.

Tickets are still on sale, with £92 for a weekend ticket, £58 for a single day ticket, while hospitality tickets will set you back £205. There is discounted entry for concessions available. For more information on festival tickets, visit Jersey Live’s Web site.


Video of the Moment #862: Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds

By on Saturday, 30th June 2012 at 10:00 am

Noel Gallagher plays cabbie for former it / OC actress Misha Barton in the new video for ‘Everybody’s on the Run’. I’ve never liked LA much, though it’s mighty hilarious what Noel (or rather his cab) manages to do in one fell swoop. Err…snag. And what are the odds that a man and woman would have matching underwear? All for the love of a pair of blue plimsolls. Puzzled by my comments? Watch the video below.



Live Review: Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds with Mona at Warner Theater, Washington DC – 28th March 2012

By on Tuesday, 3rd April 2012 at 2:00 pm

Warner Theater in the heart of downtown DC – read: ghastly dead after normal working hours and on the weekends – usually puts on shows of a genteel nature. Christmas productions of the Nutcracker come to mind, for example; it started out as a vaudeville and silent film house. But every once in a while, their staff will open its doors to put on rock shows of a higher calibre: think David Byrne and Morrissey, two acts I’d seen there previously. Last Wednesday night, it played host to one half of the most contentious partnerships of Manchester, Noel Gallagher and his solo project called Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds. While waiting around for the show to begin, I could hear assorted male English accents in the crowd. Clearly, Noel’s devoted from blighty had made the trip over for this tour…

While Reverend and the Makers supported Noel and his band on their recent jaunt around the UK, opening duties in America fell to TGTF 10 for 2011 poll winners Mona. I was super proud of them for bagging this slot and hoped this would be their ticket to fame here in the States, after having quite a bit of traction as an NME darling in Britain last year. Despite having a banner that clearly read “MONA” as their backdrop, security stopped me and asked who the opening band was. Umm…

‘Teenager’ early on in their set didn’t disappoint, and neither did ‘Lean into the Fall’, in which Nick Brown’s screams were received admirably by early arriving patrons. ‘Shooting the Moon’, with its emphatic “I am / I am / I am! / shooting the moon!” chorus and screeched verses, stirred punters. Similar to when I saw Two Door Cinema Club open for Phoenix at a sold-out Constitution Hall in May 2010, I pity the fools who were drinking outside and missed a great set from the Nashville-based rockers.

Compared to those I’ve seen of Jonsi and Cut Copy, Gallagher’s lighting backdrop was disappointing, featuring either simple coloured light displays with or animations of houses or memorably, the open mouth of an old man (who I guess doesn’t care for Noel Gallagher or his music). Epileptic strobe lighting filled in the gaps. But as you’ve probably already guessed, everyone who bought a ticket to this show was a living, breathing Oasis fanatic, so he could have showed up onstage with nothing but his guitar and the fans still would have considered the show a success and would have come. I think it’s important, though, to note that despite the bill, the show was not sold out. Either people weren’t willing to shell out the big bucks for a Warner Theatre show, or he just doesn’t have enough fans in this town. [Editor’s note: despite signing a contract stating that I would only use my photos of Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds for editorial purposes (e.g., for TGTF) and not for commercial purposes (a moot point, since I photograph gigs using a point and shoot Panasonic Lumix), his management decided not to allow me to use any photos I took of Noel and his band Wednesday night. If you’re desperate for visuals, I suggest you Google “Noel Gallagher Warner Theater video” and you will find tonnes of ROIOs taken by fans on similar equipment.]

Another thing of note: though the Gallagher brothers have parted ways, it’s Noel who has made more of a departure from their old band’s sound. His debut solo album smacks more of introspective singer songwriting than of the stadium anthems he used to pen for his former band, which works only to a limited extent in a large venue such as this. So it’s not a surprise he starts his set with two guaranteed crowd pleasers, ‘(It’s Good) To Be Free’ and ‘Mucky Fingers’, before trying out ‘Everybody’s on the Run’. Make no question about it, everyone here’s already got his album and are singing along note for note, just like on the previous Oasis numbers. Stood there, you feel like you’re surrounded by a large gang, and you’re either part of it or not. I’m an Oasis fan – ‘(What’s the Story) Morning Glory’ was an important album in my childhood – but I realised quickly that I wasn’t anywhere near as big of a fan as the people that surrounded me. The encore, composed entirely of Oasis songs, proves that Noel knows what his fans are expecting when they come to see him play.

If you were wondering if the elder Gallagher still has that foul mouth, the answer is yes. Some may find his brand of humour endearing – and I’m guessing if you’re an average bloke, you are included in this group – but he’s kind of offensive when he talks down to the crowd. In general I don’t find my mates from Manchester anywhere near as crass; certainly they’ve never said to a child that he should look forward to all the cussing and swearing he will get to do when he’s older. Err… Or maybe they are censoring themselves around me? I’ve no idea. While I ‘get’ that him swearing about how dare his usual keyboardist go and get his wife pregnant and she had the nerve to have the baby during this leg of his tour is funny in a sarcastic way, call me a prude, but I think it’s a low and unnecessary blow.

Sarcastic barbs aside, there were some clear winning songs in the set. ‘Don’t Look Back in Anger’, one of few songs in the Oasis back catalogue that Noel sang lead on back in the day that he can claim as being the lead singer legitimately, closed out the encore. I’ve seen big productions where singers stop singing altogether to allow the audience to belt their hearts out, and here is one of those times where predictably, everyone in the venue is yelling towards the stage, “and so, Sally can wait, she knows it’s too late…” This is probably Noel’s everyday gigging life, as he comfortably stepped back from the mike to concentrate on his guitar. Narcissistic moment? Definitely. But it’s something that Noel can count on for years to come.

After the cut: Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds set list.
Continue reading Live Review: Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds with Mona at Warner Theater, Washington DC – 28th March 2012


Thirty One – Manchester Charity Compilation to Benefit CALM

By on Tuesday, 14th February 2012 at 11:00 am

Last year I started writing for a magazine called CALMzine, the publication of CALM (Campaign Against Living Miserably), a nonprofit charity that was founded with support from trustee (and of course, someone who looms very large in the story of Manchester’s musical heritage) Tony Wilson in 2006. CALM’s initial intention and continuing campaign has been to help fight the high suicide rate of men under the age of 35 in the UK.

While the campaign, Web site, magazine and online community targets men in this age group, the support system they have in place including a free, anonymous helpline is open to anyone who needs help. CALM began first with a helpline in the Northwest but in late November, they celebrated the launch of their London helpline at a special party at Topman Oxford Street on the 25th of November 2011, an event that I was glad to have the chance to take in firsthand.

Depression and stress are just two things that all of us have in our lives, yet they are main players in that final, desperate decision: when a person chooses to end his/her life. CALM had provided a safe haven for many of those on the brink, for people who are having difficulty coping with real issues in their lives and have nowhere to turn to.

Running these helplines cost money of course, and right now the helplines are open on Saturdays, Sundays, Mondays and Tuesdays from 5 PM to midnight. But here is where you can help: CALM’s goal is to have the helpline open every night of the week. Writer/DJ Dave Haslam has curated for the Factory Foundation a special collection of 31 songs, named aptly ‘Thirty One’. Being that it’s Factory related, you can probably guess where this is going…

Yes, ‘Thirty One’ is a compilation of tunes from some of ours here at TGTF and I’m sure some of your favourite Manchester-based artists. Elbow, busy now with work on making the London Olympics this summer sound good to the world, has provided a UK exclusive: a live version of ‘Lippy Kids’ from Pukkelpop. I Am Kloot, not a stranger to charity works as evidenced by their appearance at the Billie Butterfly Fund show I attended last year, have reworked their track ‘Bigger Wheels’ especially for this release. Everything Everything, who also performed at the Billie Butterfly show, offer up their cover of Gloworm’s ‘Carry Me Home’. (I’m quite interested to hear how that one turned out!) A remix of the Whip‘s ‘Secret Weapon’ is also in this collection; if you recall, their ‘Wired Together’ appeared at #5 on my Top Albums of 2011 list. Other bands we’ve banged on about, including Airship, Bad Lieutenant, Delphic, Dutch Uncles, Mr. Scruff and Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds all make appearances on this compilation, plus many more. If the music isn’t enough for you, the album also includes art direction from Peter Saville and special photography by Tom Cockram, who’s done some ace shots of Delphic and Egyptian Hip Hop in the past, so I’m expecting the images included on this to be truly lovely.

Support this very worthy cause by buying this collection here, with all the proceeds going directly to CALM. Varying prices allow for different levels of donation: £10, £20 or £31 (get it?), with your choice of 320kbps MP3, FLAC and Apple Lossless, in fully digital (with instant download) and physical digipaks (released the 12th of March) are available. Limited edition vinyl is on sale at Townsend Records.

More often than not, suicide happens because someone has decided his/her life is hopeless. CALM’s mission is to help people in crisis, and your donation by purchasing this album will help them continue this mission.


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There Goes The Fear is where we tell you about the latest music, gigs, and tours we love and think you should too.

We love music that has its heart on its sleeve, tells a story, swims around our head all day or makes us dance like no-one's watching.

TGTF was edited by Mary Chang, based in Washington, DC.

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