Wednesday, 27 April 2011


Woughton leisure centre, Milton Keynes.
 23rd April 2011.

Greetings dear readers & welcome to your genial hosts birthday blog. For 'twas on this day NOT so many moons ago that this scribe sprang forth kicking & screaming onto this orb shouting 'WOMAN; hand me my quill'. 
 So after dropping off the now semi-toothless & bruised, wallet draining skateboarder, Madame Tightpocket & myself hit the M1, bound for Milton Keynes, on our quest to once again witness the good times rock'n'roll of the Heavy Metal Kids!

 After checking into the beautiful Mercure Parkside Hotel, set in Idyllic country grounds, (a snip at a mere £62) we headed down to the bar for a snack & the first of many; waaaay too many celebratory birthday drinks.
 A small cab drive later & we had arrived at the Woughton Leisure centre.

We bought our tickets & found there was nothing else to do but head for the bar in our search for more, (lots, lots more) liquid embrocation.
 Shortly after, the Kids entered the building. Ronnie, Keith, Cosmo & Justin. We re-acquainted ourselves & had a few more drinks. Thanks for the birthday brandy Ronnie.
 Now if you ever go to see the Heavy Metal Kids; & I strongly recommend that you do, go & have a natter with them, buy them a drink & listen to what they have to say. For they've had a lifetime in rock'n'roll & a wealth of stories second to none. Believe me dear reader, thou shalt be transfixed.

Now you may have noticed, dear reader that I have omitted the name of John Altman from the cause of the H.M.K. Well it appears my dears, that John has moved on to pursue & further his acting career. We can only wish him well in all his future plans. It appears; & rightly so that the Kids are held in extremely high esteem in Rock'n'roll circles & there are no shortage of suitors for the post of lead vocalist. However, step forward & into the light; the highly talented  Mr Justin McConville.

 If this was Justins first gig as lead vocalist, the H.M.K  have no worries about their future. He did the job admirably & still found time to throw some seriously good shapes for the photographers. A perfect foil for the more reserved Cosmo who lets his guitar do the talking, wringing out those oh so familiar lead breaks & riffs from his trusty Gibbo.

 Now the rhythmn section of  Seasoned campaigners, Keith & Ronnie were as solid & dependable as ever. (If Carlsberg made drummers......etc etc)

If Carlsberg made drummers .....!

 Never content to rest on their laurels & trade on their name, they are still writing great songs &  it never ceases to amaze me how they play every gig with a passion, vigour & a vibrancy usually associated with bands who have the benefit of fresh faced youth on their side. A lesson in which certain other bands of their generation would do well to take heed of.

  In fact suffice it to say that if Carlsberg made great rock'n'roll bands, they could do worse than to use these blokes as a blueprint.
 But don't just take my word for it, get yourselves out there & go to bloody well see 'em. You'll be guaranteed a rocking good night.

 N.B.  Please forgive me my dears, for overloading this blog with pics, but I just couldn't make my mind up which ones to use. Some may not be as good as the others, but I'm afraid I was really rather drunk. So here's the best & worst of the rest.
 Hopefully we'll see you at the Winning Post.

 As ever me old shipmates, please feel free to nick, nab & snaffle any pics that may grab your fancy.
Chin Chin my dears.

Tuesday, 19 April 2011

New York Dolls

Manchester Academy. 29-03-11.

 Oh woah woah & thrice woah. First & foremost let me have a right good proper whinge. For tonights show I shelled out the princely sum of £52.50 for two £23.50 tickets. Booking fees! What a right old bunch of arse.
 But hey; this is the New York Dolls right? Surely it's gonna be worth it? Wrong!
Now I've seen this band on several occasions since their reformation & they've never failed to blow me away.
But tonight; well the whole thing seemed to be more than a little lacklustre.

They opened the show with 'looking for a kiss' & right then I knew something was amiss. One of the most iconic rock'n'roll songs of the 20th century went by with more of a whimper than a bang.
 I can only put this down to the change in personnel. Steve Conte & Sami Yaffa were so noticeable by their abscence. Don't get me wrong this is no fault of the Dolls or of the missing parties.For a fuller explanation of this please check out  'El Diablo' my fellow bloggers' interview with Steve Conte at  
 Top work mate.

 Without Steve & Sami, the whole band ethos was missing & it felt to me like a  David Johanson solo project.
Syl Sylvain; god love Syl. Every time I've witnessed the Dolls, he's played every gig like it's gonna be his last but tonight that fire & passion was missing.
So that's where Blanche from coronation street disappeared to.
Frank Infante from Blondie has taken over lead guitar duties.  He looks every inch the New York Doll & he's no slouch behind a fretboard, so why was I so disappointed? 

 Maybe it's the quality of the material on the new album. It has a few decent moments but it's not a patch on the previous two offerings. 
 Man I couldn't even be bothered to vye for position to get a few decent shots. 
 Now Mrs Tightpocket thoroughly enjoyed the whole show, but it is the first time she's seen them.
 I don't know, maybe I'm a grumpy old sod who expects too much. 
 However one thing I do know for certain; I will never part company with such an amount of my hard earned groats to see this show again.
Until next time dear readers.
 Chin chin.

Friday, 8 April 2011


Car thieves are operating in this area.

In the early hours of Saturday 2nd April. My prized 16 year old Toyota Celica was stolen, vandalised & written off by what can only be described as pond film; the lowest form of life that crawled out of the ooze.
 This has seriously incapacitated my gig intake. the first casualty of this being 'Gunfire Dance' at the Actress & bishop in Birmingham last saturday. (sorry we couldn't make it Jez, hope you had a great night, at least our ticket money went to a worthy cause).
 I would just like to leave a message for these slimy, thieving little toads; . . .
 MAY YOUR NEXT SHIT BE A HEDGEHOG & may you feel every spine on evacuation. See you in court.
     Chin bloody chin.

Tuesday, 5 April 2011

The Damned.


Greetings my dears & welcome to another blog by your old mate Flash Tightpocket.
  I always love attending these goth weekends in Whitby, it's full of beautiful, friendly people & I also consider it as a kind of spiritual home. My father once told me that I was conceived there on a dirty weekend. Hmmm, nice.
  Anyway; it was one of those rare occasions where I didn't have to drive home after the gig, so Mrs Tightpocket & me were allowed to cut loose a little & indulge ourselves in the old 'golden throat charmer'!
  It was also a chance to bump into some old friends; Jacqui & Johnny from the mighty 'Devilish Presley', Loopy Lorna, Chris Spooks, White Rabbit, with bread knife & ankle biter & my old mate & brother in arms from those halcyon days of 'Shake the Weasel,' Al & his mrs Jane.

 Now Al & me are veterans of many Damned gigs going back many years, but we're always in agreement that there's always a sense of occasion when they've played these weekends in Whitby.
 Tonight was no exception. In fact, when the Damned took to the stage at midnight, it soon became apparent that something was amiss, even worse, was someone missing?
 Where in fact, was the axe hero who can usually be seen on these occasions wearing a dress or a Fred Flintstone outfit?
 Then, after a double take & a sharp intake of breath, we realised that the good captain was indeed with us after all.

 Not only was he here larger than life, but it also seems that he'd been taking lessons in sartorial elegance from the ever dapper Mr D Vanian.
 Here was our hero bedecked, resplendent & cutting a bit of a dash in the garb of a Georgian dandy. Albeit minus the powdered wig & ornate walking cane.

  Having seen the Damned at three of these occasions in Whitby, It's also come to my attention that the usual manic hardcore of their support are noticeable by their abscence.
 Maybe it's no coincidence that the Damned seem to pick their set list accordingly. Choosing to play a selection of their, for want of a better way of putting it, more atmospheric numbers. Which is by no means lost on me. Street of dreams, Thrill kill, Plan 9 channel 7 & History of the world part 1, all sounded perfect in their delivery.

 You'll have to forgive me for not elaborating too much on the set list, but the copious amounts of lager I had ingested was now beginning to take its toll.
 I know this post may appear to be a little overloaded with shots of the enigmatic Dave Vanian, but what you have to understand dear reader, is that I have spent many years trying to get the perfect shot of him.Alas, all to no avail. I know these are by no means perfect, but they're the best I've managed so far.

  Now this fella never lets you down, always the snappy dresser, whenever he's on stage he always appears to have an aura about him. 
 As the years have gone by his voice has matured & achieved a richness usually associated with the likes of Sinatra & Matt Munro. Quite the crooner.
  Please feel free to correct me, but when I see him moving on stage, I'm drawn to those old Black & white films of Al Jolson. (Considered in his time to be the worlds greatest entertainer). This may be purely coincidence but I'll wager our hero's been taking a sneaky peek as well as taking a few notes.
( I'd love to hear 'em tackle a version of 'the spaniard that blighted my life).

 So there you have it boys & girls. 'The Damned'. Multi faceted, never boring & always thoroughly bloody entertaining & good value for money.

  Chin chin my dears.