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ones to watch...
IN a world where everyone kowtowed to us, this month we would have had Steve Coogan
on the cover. Actually I guess that in a world like that, people would pay us top whack for
A lot of people – aunts, policemen, Steve
adverts and each issue would make Vice look like a folded anarchist ’zine printed with green
ink on pink paper by comparison, 80% of infuriating pages blaring punchably glib slogans,
Irwin – are wont to say that it’s always the
models so smug it’s a wonder they can walk down the street without being booted in the
quiet ones you’ve got to watch out for. Stray
crotch by random passersby and free samples of ketamine stuck to the page with glue made
Borders, a quartet from Cardiff, are often
out of ketamine. In which case there would be no need to worry about having ‘slebs’ of
quiet in both senses: the spacey whisper
dubious provenance gawping from the front, especially ones who look like Eddie The Eagle of their music, and their lack of (self-)
in their press shots, like Coogan does.
publicity. Which makes them perfect for this
Well, not only does none of that stuff happen, we were frankly deemed too unimportant
section! Because it’s called ‘Ones To Watch’,
for Steve to grant us an interview (isn’t it sad when people get too ‘big’ to tackle the vital
you see. Moreover, Stray Borders (who formed in 2003 with the slightly over-
questions like “when you were shagging those birds, did you really make them shout
used name Tetsuo) are a choice pick, should you happen to like rumbling,
‘A-HA!’?” and “can you do an answerphone message for me in Paul Calf’s voice?”), so bol-
minor chord instrumental rock prettiness. They’ve just released a four-track,
locks to that, is what we said. If it had happened, though, I could have made a thematic
link between the cover, this column and the tragicomic escapades of ‘Alan Partridge’, a
22-minute EP entitled (are you sitting down?) Lost In Your Map, You Left
character played by Steve Coogan on TV. Specifically the scene from the first series of I’m
Us Signs In Broken Lines And Waves Of Ink. It comes in a handstamped
Alan Partridge, where Alan judges a vegetable competition at a country fair and gives a
card envelope and looks gert lush. It’s certainly not without peers – Mogwai,
monologue over the PA system; initially sticking to the subject in hand, as he realizes that
Explosions In The Sky, Rodan and Mono all come to mind – but neither is
absolutely no-one cares or is listening, he settles for moodily rambling on about whatever it a slavish or superfluous imitation. Local singer-songwriter Lily Green
he wants. Like I say, though, we didn’t get any time with Coogan, so that’s that.
contributes doomy piano, complementing the wordless squall and shipshape
Oh, except that in most instances, the interview format for short’n’snappy publications
like this one is a waste of everyone’s time – about as useful, in fact, as getting an early
morning local radio DJ to provide running commentary on a veg contest. It’s certainly
the case that with musicians or DJs or whoever, if they have anything interesting to say
about their music, it rarely fits nicely into the compact format of a preview piece. It takes
forever to transcribe all the umms and errs and even people that say nothing tend to say
several times more than the length of your feature; meanwhile from the perspective of the
musicians, a day of interviews is like a more boring version of being introduced to several
long-absent relatives at a wedding (prosaic details about your life ad infinitum), and if
conducted on the phone leaves you with a sore arm and ear.
But still all sides persist with this arrangement, out of politeness, and also because some
people are genuinely thrilled to talk to someone in a band. In fairness, if you scrub up OK
they probably will consider banging you.
Cardiff’s clubbing fraternity lost one of its most
loved sons in September when Ian Dundgey, a DJ
Gigs this column recommends for October: LOVVERS, THE SHITTY LIMITS and
who had been a fixture on Cardiff’s house scene
SATURDAY’S KIDS in Cardiff Buffalo on Wed 1 Oct (that’s a Lesson No.1 job);
throughout the 90s and 00s, was found hanged
YOUNG LIVERS in Swansea Coyote Bar on Tue 7; FLATLANDS, THE DEATH OF
in Newport. Dundgey had been a resident at Time
HER MONEY and DEAD WOLVES on Fri 10, again in Buffalo; OFF WITH THEIR Flies nights, playing with some of the best-known
HEADS and FOUR LETTER WORD in Newport Le Pub on the same day; CIRCU- DJs of the era and was considered something of
an elder statesmen of the scene. Buzz’s thoughts
HAND LEFT HAND in Clwb Ifor on Wed 22; DOOMRIDERS, SSS and others in
are with his friends and family
Newport TJ’s on Sun 26; SIMON FINN in Chapter Arts Centre on the same day and
The Globe venue on Wellfield Road, Cardiff, A decent tip of a ‘next big thing’ nature might
which we mentioned briefly last month, has be a hotly-tipped, generously-connected band
continued to take shape. Opening in November, called Rogues, who hail from London but
gigs in its first month come from Michelle feature Sam James, former singer with the
NOVEMBER Shocked, Dreadzone and The Wholigans. Poppies, whose bouncy indie rockery might
THE AUTOMATIC (Swansea Sin City, Wed 5) There’s also an open day on Sat 11 Oct if you have made UK-wide waves were it not sung
IGLU & HARTLY (Cardiff Barfly, Thus 6) want to have a scope upfront in the Welsh language. Sam, one suspects, is
NIZLOPI (Cardiff Clwb Ifor Bach, Thurs 6)
all too aware of this. “Sounds just like Duran
THE ZUTONS (Cardiff Uni, Sun 16)
In further ‘new venue’ developments, the per- Duran,” was one observer’s comments on
LISA KNAPP (Cardiff St David’s Hall, Tue 18)
petually hands-changing venue on Guildhall Rogues themselves
SPUNGE (Barfly, Sat 22)
Place – for non-taxi drivers, it’s a small side
THE VIEW (Cardiff Point, Thurs 27)
street connecting St Mary St and Westgate St In The City, the annual Manchester-based
GLASVEGAS (Swansea Sin City, Sat 29)
– is firing itself up again. At the start of this jamboree of seminars, showcases, A&R brou-
THE QUIREBOYS (Newport TJ’s, Sun 30; Sin City, Fri 12 Dec)
year it was The Club With No Name; starting haha and power drinking takes place from Sun
this month it’ll be a club that, um, doesn’t have 5-Tue 7 Oct, across several Manc venues. The
a name at present following Welsh acts are representing: Hemme
JASON DONOVAN (St David’s Hall, Mon 1)
Fatale, Friends Electric, Graveyard Johnnys,
THE FUTUREHEADS (The Point, Fri 5)
You’d be forgiven for not having noticed, as Rod Thomas and Telegram From The Queen.
these gents aren’t of the braggart persuasion, Good luck and that
ELECTRIC SIX (Clwb Ifor Bach, Thurs 11)
but Cardiff indie hoedowners Threatmantics
THE SAW DOCTORS (The Point, Thurs 11)
sealed a deal with the esteemed Domino label Sleeveface – the locally-invented art of lining
some months ago. Oct 20 sees the release up an LP sleeve in front of your face – will, by
of Big Man, their debut single for the label Christmas, have a tie-in book. The book already
PAUL CARRACK (Swansea Grand Theatre, Wed 21 Jan) (actually Domino sublabel Double Six, if we’re
has a cover (a strangely toothful man’s image,
NEW KIDS ON THE BLOCK (CIA, Thurs 29 Jan) taking notes). Their debut album Upbeat Love held up by someone with puzzlingly reddened
KEANE (CIA, Wed 4 Feb) follows on Nov 3 hands) and is available to pre-order at Amazon
The lovely people at muso-haunt Clwb Ifor Bach are giving Buzz readers the chance to win a pair of tickets to any upcoming gig their wee heart
desires. Just email, with ‘WELSH CLUB’ in the subject header and your name and phone number by 1 Nov.
OCTOBER2008.indd 50 25/9/08 3:27:31 pm
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