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Author Topic: HOUSE OF PROGRESSION SHOWS.  (Read 314554 times)
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« Reply #1500 on: August 20, 2012, 03:50:47 PM »

The people who wanted it to do better than last year. There was still about eight million people watching it, though.
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« Reply #1501 on: August 21, 2012, 03:01:10 PM »

I know that posting on here is preaching to the converted, but as you know I sometimes need to rant & ranting on here at least I know most will understand.

THIS IS REALITY!!

 SOLSTICE/IO EARTH Camden Underword, London

Assumption, it is said, is the mother of all fuck ups. In this day and age, it simply isn't enough to book a gig, tell people about it on your website or Facebook page and assume theyíll turn up. As evinced by the paltry showing in Camdenís Underworld tonight, unless you get out there and promote the hell out of the thing, they wonít. A good case in point is the show by a young UK prog act the next night, a Sunday night that also plays host to the Euro 2012 final. Itís this bandís first trek into central London too, and yet some serious hard graft meant the venue was impressively crowded. Valuable lessons to be learnt here methinks.

IO Earthís troubles don't just end with the 150 or so people milling around in acres of space. Lead singer Claire Malin has been taken ill and canít make the gig. Still, after some humble apologies the remaining five instrumental members make a fair fist of entertaining the crowd with a rearranged set that sadly only includes the title track from this yearís impressive Moments. Itís not all doom however Ė an impromptu jam built around chords shouted out by the audience injects a nice moment of levity into what really could have gone horribly wrong for the band.

Itís been nearly 30 years since this writer last saw Solstice on stage, back at Londonís Marquee club in the heyday of the 80s prog revival. Steven Wilson was a fan back then and heís here tonight to check on the bandís progress. The beards and woolly hats may have gone and the bandís more relaxed approach to conducting their business has been replaced with something a touch more contemporary, but there remains something charmingly naÔve about Solstice.
That said, Andy Glass, the sole survivor from that era (who doesn't seem to have aged a day), is a formidable guitarist, and there are times when he cuts loose tonight that simply take your breath away. Opening pair Morning Light and Peace take the audience right back to those heady Marquee days, singer Emma Brown a fitting talent to tread where the likes of Sandy Leigh and Shelley Platt had gone convincingly before. Still, given that sheís been at the mic for Solstice since 1996 perhaps her accomplished performance shouldnít be that surprising. Beside her, violinist Jenny Newman is  as dextrous on the neck of her instrument as Glass is on his guitar, shining on the traditional Lads Of Lois and Jennyís Chickens. Best of all is the interplay between Glass and keyboard player Steve McDaniel on new song Keepers, which suggests, that, when it arrives, the bandís follow up to 2010ís Spirit should be an absolute corker.

Jerry Ewing

Jerry is actually being very generous about the numbers, I was there, I counted 82 people on a Saturday night. The Sunday show referred to was the Haken Borderline show. The Northern Line was out as well.

And this is so true of not just these bands, it happens 9/10. And not just bands, the apathy is rife in the audience as well.  I don't believe there is a Live Prog scene in the UK,I think people like individual bands. People say they love the music & wax lyrical on social network sights but when it actually comes to doing anything about it, it's another story.

The reason for my outburst is pure and utter frustration whilst working on a certain Peel show. (In fact a lot of the shows full stop.)

I have sent an email to both management & record label kicking butt!!! I don't care if they take it badly, I seem to be the only one working on these shows. The conversation that stated, Oh we are hitting myspace, & Facebook.

I can't wait to hear back, particularly my comment............Really? Why not just become a plumber instead the good you are doing for the music.

So, in a way X-Factor can't be blamed at all. The very artists, management & so called damn record companies are doing a fantastic job killing the 'Scene' or, the Smoke and Mirrors of what people think is a scene.

APATHY IS NOT AN OPTION!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


The Battle continues..........................................................For now.

Thanks for reading, understanding and helping in some manner in keeping my sanity together.....................Just.
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Trace
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« Reply #1502 on: August 21, 2012, 04:10:36 PM »

Unfortunately it has often been so.
I'm sure we all have horror stories, but my favourite is an under-publicised Grey Lady Down gig in Swindon. They were vaguely popular at the time, but there were only about 8 people in a big room. I really enjoyed the gig, but felt sorry for both the band and landlord. At the time there was no prog press, no internet, and only local papers. And the Swindon audience were (and often still are) notoriously difficult to prise away from their sofas.

Kepp going Twang, and I shall endeavour to get to at least one HOP show before Christmas.
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« Reply #1503 on: August 22, 2012, 09:42:27 AM »

You make a lot of sense Twang. I couldn't agree more.

I think for a band to draw a crowd, you have to capture peopleís imagination and enthusiasm and in order to do that, the band in question needs to possess something that the other bands do not. Raw talent is just not enough. The world is full of talented people who never find a niche. You have to get involved with the scene at a personal level.

The other thing is finding that element which gives you a unique or at least uncommon point of interest. Itís a bloody hard thing to do and in most cases you either stumble upon it by sheer luck, or you meticulously craft it through a process of trial and error.

In the case of Tinyfish on stage, I've always believed it is down to the musical chemistry generated by the people in the band and the shared sense of humour. You can see it here on the forum that contrary to outside perception, most Prog fans possess a fully developed and highly active sense of humour. Sure there is power and emotion in the music but there is also a lot to smile about and share. That sharing is what we always try to accomplish in the band because we've always seen ourselves as fans of the genre who just happen to play in Tinyfish as well.

Itís not hard work if you love what you do.

You'll see us in the audience at other bands gigs because we like the music and we've become friends with a large number of people who also make the effort to attend the shows. When you see Rob and I wandering around at Summers End this year for example, weíll be there because itís fantastic just to listen to great bands and hang out with like minded people.

Over and above the music we make, probably the thing that I'm most proud of being a part is the creation of The Fishtank because it's more now than just a place to promote Tinyfish. It's a place where people who are genuinely into their music can come together to support the genre, each other and most importantly, do silly things. Never underestimate the power of silly.

If you look at playing prog as purely a means to further your ambitions, you're probably going to fail. If you are playing prog because you just love making the music, I think you'll have a better chance than most.

For an example of an individual who obviously loves what he does, I give you Matt Stevens. He throws himself totally into the music that interests him and in doing so, he and his band are beginning to make big waves on the scene. I like going to see him because he has something different to give and he always looks as if he's getting into it. In short, he's worth going out of an evening to pay money and witness on stage.

We actively encourage other bands to promote their shows here because we want to contribute to the genre in any way we can and in that spirit, I really do consider everyone who posts here a friend of mine and a co-worker in prog whoís opinion I value and trust.

Except for JamesA of course.  Grin
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« Reply #1504 on: August 22, 2012, 09:59:59 AM »

JamesA is The Boss. Even I'm scared of James.
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Briefly Icky Giantess
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« Reply #1505 on: August 22, 2012, 11:01:24 AM »

No need to be. He can't run very fast.
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« Reply #1506 on: August 22, 2012, 11:50:19 AM »

Quite speedy as a walker though (and I did say walker).
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Briefly Icky Giantess
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« Reply #1507 on: August 22, 2012, 11:52:39 AM »

No slouch as a winker, too.
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A James
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« Reply #1508 on: August 22, 2012, 10:06:00 PM »

I am now back from Dusseldorf.
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« Reply #1509 on: August 22, 2012, 10:22:12 PM »

You were away?
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« Reply #1510 on: August 23, 2012, 05:58:31 AM »

DŁsseldorf is not interesting.
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« Reply #1511 on: August 23, 2012, 06:01:17 AM »

Geoff Bands has mentioned something about Celebr8.2 on facebook - second weekend of May next year.
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A James
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« Reply #1512 on: August 23, 2012, 07:27:36 AM »

I was underwhelmed by the bands being suggested by the general population, so I hope they will ignore the masses...
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« Reply #1513 on: August 23, 2012, 07:38:22 AM »

Of course they'll ignore the masses.  The first thing is to work out the headliners and then back fill.  Some of the suggestions, although good, would be financially not viable.  So, I would expect a lot of British bands with possibly one or two from the near continent - France or Germany maybe.
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« Reply #1514 on: August 23, 2012, 08:27:36 AM »

I was underwhelmed by the bands being suggested by the general population, so I hope they will ignore the masses...

Yep, couldn't agree more. Most of the suggestions people were making wouldn't drag me the 5 minute walk down to Kingston... Smiley
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