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Post  misery guts on Wed Apr 18, 2018 7:41 am

Belladrum 2017 - Cridhe Tartan - Torridon
Playing the Garden stage on the opening day, they had a decent enough set, whoever they are.

R Kelly - Sex, Girls & Videotapes
Is the 51 year old R&B legend up to no good? Reporter Ben Zand didn't really bring the guy in, but did speak to lawyers, family members and past associates and girlfriends to put together a picture of a dodgy character all the same. Whether a sex cult is the name of the latest game remains to be proved.

Tiree Music Festival
An hour of highlights from the 7th year of this, in 2016, some of which I've seen in previous shows, but others such as Findlay Napier or Jesse Terry were unfamiliar. The Levellers were picked to round things off, an apt measure of star status.
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Post  misery guts on Fri Apr 20, 2018 7:25 am

Frida Sundemo at Electric Dreams
A Swedish synth-pop act, with some alright songs, in this short set.

Celebrity Damage Control: Lil Kim
She fell in with the wrong crowd, became the Nicki Minaj of her day, then tried to go mainstream and went to jail instead. But now very much a has-been.

Only Men Aloud
Their guests this week were Caryl Parry Jones, and ace cellist Julian Lloyd-Webber.
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Post  misery guts on Mon Apr 23, 2018 7:00 am

Let's Play Two
Pearl Jam played gigs at Wrigley Field, Chicago in the summer of 2016, and this film also blended in the Chicago Cubs winning the World Series for the 1st time in 108 years, to Eddie Vedder's self-evident rapture. I don't go for rounders, sorry baseball, but it was still a good show.

Austin City Limits - 40th Anniversary - Foo Fighters
A 2015 gig with Dave Grohl's band joined by some guests as they ran through some of their hits.

Live From Abbey Road - Classics : Gipsy Kings
A quirky choice from June 2006, paired with the also legendary Dr John from May 2006, who was apparently the first act to ever feature in this series, weirdly enough.

Live With... Dirty Thrills
A 4-piece rock band, with some decent enough songs from their Heavy Living album.
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Post  misery guts on Wed Apr 25, 2018 7:27 am

Music Videos That Defined The 90s
A half-decent run-through from the same team who do the Discovering... series, which featured some surprising inclusions, but also some glaring omissions (no Nothing Compares 2 U for starters).

Urban Myths - Backstage at Live Aid
Comic series notable here for the number of impersonations going on, as well as tackling many of the issues silly and serious from the day.

The BET Life of Diddy
One thing I like with these BET shows is they always name contributors, and there's always dozens of them. Diddy's career has spanned 20+ years, he discovered Mary J Blige, and I gather there was suggestion he also takes the blame/credit for French Montana too.
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Post  misery guts on Fri Apr 27, 2018 6:47 am

The South Bank Show Originals: Miriam Makeba
Melvyn Bragg profiled her in 1995, seeing hers as "the story of South Africa". She had a very humble start, but made big success in the USA and married Hugh Masekela for a while. She felt trapped when her mother died and she couldn't return safely to SA to mourn. When Mandela was freed, he suggested she came home, and in 1991 she did.
Miriam Makeba wrote:We must forgive, but we shouldn't forget.

Black Stone Cherry - Family Tree
The usual On Record format, with Matt Stocks talking to Jon and John Fred about their new album, their new label, the evolution from their last album in 2015, their mix of influences, their forthcoming appearance at Download, and the chance of touring the UK themselves.

Belladrum 2017 - Cridhe Tartan - Tigerstyle
A DJ & Bhangra group who had plenty of melodic songs, and a lead singer who appeared to be reading the lyrics off his smartphone. The audience looked like they got pretty drenched.

The Arthur Brown Story - Part 3
Unsure how long since I saw part 1, and who knows when I might see part 2, but Iain McNay as usual picked up the story in 1978, where Arthur did not face the same punk backlash as others. Peter Gabriel told him he'd taken inspiration for his stagecraft and also his work in Africa (though Arthur credits Ginger Baker as preceding him). He continued his spiritual journey.
Arthur Brown wrote:Hear about a hero - see a hero - be a hero.
He spent time as a musical therapist, writing songs from people's problems to give them help. He suffered a brain haemorrhage at the end of a tour whilst over-detoxing. He toured with Robert Plant in 2002, and also the Pretty Things. He was 75 whenever this was recorded and still making music, and had been the subject of a biography. Quite a character.
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Post  misery guts on Mon Apr 30, 2018 7:10 am

Municipal Waste - Bloodstock 2017
Spirited showcase which the crowd seemed to enjoy.

Live From Abbey Road - Classics
Jake Bugg managed to knock through a few tracks in his short allotted time, and Foster The People managed to fit a couple on after, including a cover of Neil Young's Heart of Gold too.

L7: Pretend We're Dead
Lengthy career portrait of the all-girl band who hit paydirt when Butch Vig produced an album with a proper hit on it, and then Kurt Cobain died and Green Day took over, and things petered out badly. But they reformed in 2015, so all's well that ends well, or something.

Last Laugh In Vegas
Glorious series about 9 UK entertainers coming together for one night only for their Vegas debuts, with Frank Marino as their mentor. He tried to get Kenny Lynch to sing some Bruno Mars, but Kenny stuck to his guns. The final concert was more musical than anything, with Jess Conrad, Anita Harris and others doing their thing, and even comedians Bernie Clifton and Cannon & Ball did some music too. The terrible shootings last Autumn happened the weekend before this gig, which may have helped the mood.
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Post  misery guts on Wed May 02, 2018 7:12 am

Celebrity Damage Control: Mariah Carey
She had a tough life, but after connecting with Brenda K Starr, she stiffed Warner Bros out of signing her so that she could go with Columbia and Tommy Mottola. Success followed, but at quite a cost. When she slipped free from his chains, her career nosedived. But she stuck with it, and a 2nd marriage proved more fruitful, and she's even got on the reality show bandwagon.

King 810 - Live at Bloodstock 2017
A rough bunch from Flint, Michigan with something of a spiritual bent to their material, and a throaty singer. But somehow they made it tolerable.
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Post  misery guts on Fri May 04, 2018 6:46 am

Skindred - Live at Bloodstock 2017
A quirkier rock band than some, slipping in nods to tunes as diverse as Back In Black, Harlem Shuffle and On A Ragga Tip. They finished with the crowd's chance to do the Newport helicopter, of course.

Austin City Limits: Radiohead
Back at the Moody Theatre, giving a workout to some of their less regular numbers, but obligingly ending with Idioteque and Paranoid Android. Ed and Thom gave a little chat afterwards, too.

A Flock of Seagulls at Electric Dreams
Mike Score is still singing, and they finished with Wishing and I Ran, to much crowd delight.
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Post  misery guts on Tue May 08, 2018 7:48 am

Live From Abbey Road - Classics - Ryan Adams
The last in this run of repeats featured Ryan with some help from Laura Marling, and a final spot from David Gray, cheerful about the way fame came and went.

Arena - My Name Is Celia Cruz
From 1988, a profile of the Queen of Salsa, a Cuban exile in New York who tapped into Hispanic, Caribbean and Catholic audiences. She was backed by the Sonora Matancera, and her husband had been a trumpeter in that band. She recorded with Tito Puente, and liked Doris Day.

Live With... Jack Harris
Folk/blues apparently, but some thoughtful and well sung songs.
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Post  misery guts on Thu May 10, 2018 9:20 am

Belladrum 2017 - Cridhe Tartan - Vukovi
A rising band went to the Hothouse Stage, and delivered a steady, short set.

Stuart Burrows
Profile from 2003 of a Welshman described as the "world's best Mozart tenor". He started young, but had difficulties and lost his voice. After a short stint in the RAF, he found his voice had returned, and it was Eisteddfodd and the Welsh National Opera, and Covent Garden, Carnegie Hall and so on. He even had his own BBC series, and had a Le Shuttle train named after him. Kiri te Kanawa and Joan Sutherland were amongst those singing his praises (figuratively).

Thomas Dolby at Electric Dreams
A jovial performer who ran through his hits, and beyond, for he's still working away. He seems more at ease than some of his contemporaries, it seems to me.
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Post  misery guts on Sat May 12, 2018 6:22 am

Only Men Aloud
Don't always list all of these, but this included an act called the Three Welsh Tenors, which led to versions of Libiamo and Nessun Dorma, which reminded me much of the Andre Rieu formula. Rebecca Evans was the other guest.

Belladrum 2017 - Cridhe Tartan - Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes
Quite a spirited and free-flowing set, notable for Frank asking the audience to thanks not only the other bands at the festival, but all the workers behind the scenes who make it a success.

Celebrity Damage Control: Britney Spears
She was a child star, then she was a pop star, then she was a superstar, then she got into romance, and things went badly. After 2 marriages and 2 kids, she needed her parents to take control and put her back on the straight and narrow. And she seems to be steadied again now.
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Post  misery guts on Mon May 14, 2018 6:56 am

Belladrum 2017 - Cridhe Tartan - Milburn
Likeable indie band with a short but lively set of songs which begs the question why they never quite made it bigger.

The Pere Ubu Story, with David Thomas
Another CherryRed feature, with John Reed asking the questions for a change. David wasn't the most articulate at times, but he was at least cheerfully modest a lot, disagreeing with questions and proud of some works which might not have been as well received as others. The band was formed back in 1975 in Cleveland partly as an exercise in proving it could be done. I was also taken with his tale of visiting Salvation Army stores for album bargains (something I too find rewarding). He disliked Patti Smith and the New York scene too, so how could I be critical? Their album process involved recording for 36 minutes and then stopping. He defined their music as the usage of but as a sentence qualifier rather than and. He disliked most UK acts besides Soft Machine, Van der Graaf Generator and John Lydon. Silence denotes wisdom.
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Post  misery guts on Wed May 16, 2018 8:01 am

Amon Amarth
4th & final of these Bloodstock 2017 shows, and probably a favourite (also the longest). The Swedish metallers with Viking inspiration and somewhat OTT song titles like Destroyer of the Universe or Deceiver of the Gods at least allowed people in on the joke.

Still on the Run - The Jeff Beck Story
As well as Jeff himself, his story was recounted by Rod Stewart & Ronnie Wood, and fellow guitar legends like Eric Clapton, David Gilmour, Slash, friend Jimmy Page and so on. His experimentations are respected, and he seems a champion of women players and singers on the quiet too.

Celebrity Damage Control: Sean Combs
He'll be 50 next November, if we're all spared. His father was a drug dealer, killed when Sean was 3. He was drawn to hip-hop and hustled his way into a position as A&R, where he launched Jodeci. Forced into a backstep by a tragic event, he launched his own label. Then came the Tupac/Biggie saga, and he launched his own singing career. After big sales, and diversified products like clothes lines and restaurants, he was linked to a club shooting involving his latest protegee Shyne. But he got over that, and changed his name a few times, and remains a hip-hop legend.
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Post  misery guts on Fri May 18, 2018 7:07 am

One More Time With Feeling
Profile in b&w of Nick Cave during the making of his recent Skeleton Tree album, with some internal monologue chats amidst the general footage. Towards the end, discussion turns to his son Arthur, who must have recently died, an event which understandably throws life into contrast.

Austin City Limits: Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds
2014 gig with Nick in fine form, and afterwards talking about the influence of Johnny Cash and Leonard Cohen on him whilst he was growing up in Australia.

The Christians at Electric Dreams
A shorter set than some of these 80s bands seem to get, but still worthy, particularly tracks like Forgotten Town and Hooverville, all too timeless alas.

Only Men Aloud
Support guests this time being a girl choir called Serendipity, and also Welsh legend Bonnie Tyler, who unsurprisingly got to close the show with full support on Total Eclipse of the Heart.
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Post  misery guts on Wed May 23, 2018 7:48 am

The Cure - Live at the Tempodrom, Berlin
A gig from Nov 2002, where the lads were performing a show called Trilogy, with material from 3 different albums from their career. For the casual viewer, they did at least include Pictures of You and Lullaby.

Larry King Now - Portugal The Man
Zachary and John from the band who are apparently onto their 8th LP, but have only just hit paydirt with Feel It Still. They suggested it owed its success to Please Mr Postman, whereas I thought it owed more to Pharrell's Happy. Anyway, they were from Alaska, and had moved to Oregon to explore music. They see Hip-Hop as the new Punk. Their album, named after Woodstock, encapsulates a modern idea of the festival. They have progressive politics. They upset Alex Jones. They used weed to help promote their song. They were surprised that Ben Stiller was a fan from way back. They hope to collaborate with Ghostface Killah or KanYe West. They met Weird Al Yankovic. Whether we hear if they have a 2nd hit remains to be seen.
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Post  misery guts on Fri May 25, 2018 6:42 am

Aled Jones - Fy Nhaith Glasurol
Budapest here, looking at the careers of Franz Liszt, Zoltan Kodaly and Bela Bartok. They started an Academy of Music, or taught there, or have a National Concert Hall named after them.

Live With... Lil & Ollie
Their first LP Confessional was showcased here, I read they've been on the up for a few years, and their material was good enough to hope they continue to do so.

Belladrum 2017 - Cridhe Tartan - Neon Waltz
From John O'Groats, and on the Hothouse Stage on Saturday night, they rattled through half a dozen indie rock numbers to crowd pleasure.
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Post  misery guts on Mon May 28, 2018 7:05 am

Football's 47 Best Worst Songs
Ahead of the upcoming Soccer World Cup, a light-hearted look at the many and varied attempts at football records. Some of which were forgettable (Anastacia, Ricky Martin, Pitbull), but many were deservedly memorable, even if often derided. Thankfully New Order's World in Motion was the winner.

Santana - Greatest Hits : Live at Montreux 2011
The Afro-Cuban legend did the hits and songs I didn't know. Good, though.

The Bluetones - Live at the Water Rats
Reformed and rocking, it seems, they defiantly did their biggest hit Slight Return about 2/3 of the way through, but they made a steady runthrough of material, with frontman Mark Morriss seemingly in good form.
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Post  misery guts on Wed May 30, 2018 7:48 am

Kerrang meets Pierce the Veil
Matt Baker meets 4 guys from PTV, who were formed 10 years ago and their new record feels like a new start, they've toured with Sleeping With Sirens, have an upcoming UK tour, once did a gig in a Chinese restaurant, they had help in their early days from A Day To Remember, and try to pass help on to upcoming bands. They've also toured with All Time Low and Tonight Alive.

Belladrum 2017 - Cridhe Tartan - Gallagher & Lyle
A rather short acoustic burst with Autumn Leaves.

Shinedown: On Record
Matt Stocks talking 1-on-1 with Brent Smith about their new, 6th LP, their first to be produced by their bass player. They plan to have videos for all the tracks on it, which will take into 2019. They enjoyed touring with Iron Maiden. Their deal with Atlantic Records is good for another 2 records. They're playing Download on the Sunday.

Belladrum 2017 - Cridhe Tartan - KT Tunstall
She keeps plugging away, but the crowd were happy enough. She even had a brief descent into a version of Seven Nation Army, with the proper words and everything.

The Biggest Weekend - Courtney Barnett / Father John Misty
Two short samples from two rising stars, neither of whom seem yet to remotely match the hype.

Latin Music USA
A 4-part series from 2009, covering the long history of Afro-Cuban music and so on, from Tito Puente and Carlos Santana through Los Lobos and Gloria Estefan, to Ricky Martin and Pitbull. Informative and illustrative of why the music has taken over so much since this was made.
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Post  misery guts on Fri Jun 01, 2018 9:38 am

The BET Life of Usher
The man himself was at least on hand to talk about his career, his dance routines, his albums, and so on. Even a short-lived beef with the very-short-lived Sisqo.

The Biggest Weekend - Manic Street Preachers / The Breeders
James Dean Bradfield chatted about the current Manics state of play (Nicky Wire was unable to play owing to a family emergency). Jamie Cullum and Public Service Broadcasting featured briefly, as well as a few numbers from the Breeders, and finally a modest selection from the set of the Welsh wonders.

Nicky Horne Presents with Myles Kennedy
The Alter Bridge whizz was pushing his latest solo album, which revolves around his father, who died when Myles was comparatively young, and who put his faith as a Christian scientist, above his family, when he died of appendicitis. The Year of the Tiger title referred to the year his old man died, 1974.
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Post  misery guts on Mon Jun 04, 2018 7:16 am

The Biggest Weekend: Beck
The American alt-rocker got a good chunk of time, and he managed a few of his hits as well as a burst of Raspberry Beret. He did a nice twist on the usual form of band intros in that each member got to showcase a minute or two from other songs (the keyboard guy doing Cars, for example).

The Biggest Weekend: Orbital
Also from Belfast, and headlining the Friday night there, preceded by an interview with the Hartnoll brothers and local legend David Holmes, who first invited them there in 1990. They kept the crowd pleased and rounded off with their Doctor Who theme version.

MTV Unplugged: Biffy Clyro
A gig at the Roundhouse in London, which is also on general sale as a live CD. They did a cover of God Only Knows along the way.

The Biggest Weekend: Neneh Cherry / First Aid Kit
A mix-mash-up led off by a chat to Goldie, who lives in Asia and practices yoga to keep fit. Neneh did some predictable hits and spoke to the crowd about positive anger. Tim from Ash chatted in studio with two guys from the Undertones (this all being in Belfast again) who are on the new Ash album. Then it was time for First Aid Kit, and they did Emmylou, happily.

Belladrum 2017 - Cridhe Tartan - KT Tunstall
An added acoustic extra of her track It Took Me So Long To Get Here, But Here I Am.
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Post  misery guts on Thu Jun 07, 2018 10:14 am

The Biggest Weekend: Emeli Sande & Clean Bandit
Chiefly in Perth, this show started with a couple of tracks from Simple Minds (who would feature in their own show later anyway), then an interview with Noel Gallagher (also featuring in his own show later) who seemed in good spirits. Then there were 3 tracks from Sande, with a post-gig chat about having her family there, being awarded the MBE and early plans for her next LP. Then there were 3 songs from also-Scottish songstress Amy McDonald, whose fame withered years back, but is clearly still popular with someone for she keeps knocking out the albums. Finally, Clean Bandit did their stuff from Swansea, with 7 fairly decent-sized hits, none of which featured the singers they should (i.e. Zara Larsson, Demi Lovato, Anne-Marie, Louisa Johnson etc). Hmm...

Belladrum 2017 - Cridhe Tartan - Dr Feelgood
Rather a shame where the 2 most recognisable band members are long gone, but they bumbled on well enough.

The Biggest Weekend - Simple Minds & Churches
Despite being anchored from Belfast, Simple Minds played in Perth, as said above, and kept it fairly classic. Then Alex & Bob from Franz Ferdinand were interviewed about their upcoming appearance, previous experience of Belfast, and their new LP. Then Ash got a look in predictably enough. Finally the action moved to Swansea for Churches' benefit.

Live With... Kimmi Rhodes
She's from Lubbock, but writes plenty of her own songs, and toured with her husband for a long time, and had recently written a memoir of her own story, and on his behalf.
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Post  misery guts on Fri Jun 08, 2018 7:30 am

Daniel Harding - The Inaugural Concert
The Orchestre de paris have a new conductor, and here they did some work by Schumann to celebrate, back in September 2016. Not heard a concert like this for quite a while.

The Biggest Weekend - Franz Ferdinand & Wolf Alice
The Scots lads did the business well, having a good time too. Then there was a chat with Karl from Underworld, about never having played Northern Ireland before, how they were reluctant to use Born Slippy in the film Trainspotting, and how smaller clubs can be trickier and have a different mentality to festivals. Then after a track from Young Fathers, it was over to Swansea to be bored by critical raves Wolf Alice. Hmm.

Example's Mixtape
The young rapper spoke of working with Wretch 3 2, Calvin Harris, Ed Sheeran, how a song he wrote for Kylie Minogue ended up being a hit for The Wanted instead, admiration for the Chemical Brothers and Jay Z, and Dave.

Belladrum 2017 - Cridhe Tartan - JR Green
Another short acoustic burst, of Technicolour Native.

Generation Grime
A lengthy and serious reflection on the rise and rise of Grime, from modest UK roots, to its global domination. Most of the great and good of the scene were present and chatty, and the only downside seemed to be the risk of selling out.
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Post  misery guts on Mon Jun 11, 2018 6:49 am

The Biggest Weekend: Underworld
The dance act were headlining in Belfast. Their big surprise was a new track that features Iggy Pop. Maybe that fitted the ethos of a band I've never found particularly good.

Belladrum 2017 - Cridhe Tartan - Honeyblood
A female duo from Glasgow, they gave a spirited account of themselves in their spot.

The Biggest Weekend - Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds
Headlining in Perth and a damn sight more entertaining. Noel slipped in a few Oasis numbers, but he's 3 albums into the HFB project now, and clearly enjoying it. He even closed on a cover of All You Need Is Love.

Arctic Monkeys - Live at the BBC
A half-hour showcase of tracks from their new 6th #1 album, and a couple of old favourites, and no narky chatting to presenters.
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Post  misery guts on Wed Jun 13, 2018 7:11 am

The Biggest Weekend: Billy Ocean, the Selecter and more
Something of a round-up show, with a couple of tracks from Stereophonics, a chat and a couple of tracks from Snow Patrol, 4 tracks from the Selecter plus a chat with Pauline and Arthur from the band, one from Jamie Cullum, a chat with Liam Gallagher (whose own set was to feature later), 3 tracks from the splinter group from UB40, and finally a chat to Billy Ocean followed by 3 tracks from his set, where he still sounds great. 

The Biggest Weekend: Taylor Swift and Paloma Faith
Somewhat on the flipside of the above, a chat with and a track from Shawn Mendes, then a couple from Rita Ora, before the entirety of the Taylor Swift set (she being partway through a world tour, and making sure to plug it), and then a lengthy run from Paloma Faith too, she supporting Sam Smith on his world tour but not showing off about it.
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Post  misery guts on Fri Jun 15, 2018 7:25 am

The Biggest Weekend: Florence and the Machine
Fortunately nearly at the end of these shows. After a short blast from Camila Cabello, there's a long run from the tiresome Florence Welch and her antics, headlining in Swansea. She's got a new album out, and is a critical darling. Zzz

Come Together - The Rise of the Festival
Enjoyable lengthy run through from the early days of the Newport Folk and Jazz Festivals, through events at Isle of Wight and Woodstock, and then on to Knebworth, Bath, and eventually Glastonbury. The erection of a £1m fence at the latter marked the modern era, and there was a mention for latterday American events like Coachella. Good stuff.

The Biggest Weekend: Liam Gallagher
Saturday night headliner in Coventry, he spent his between-song banter on football, but he mixed his own songs with a good batch of Oasis ones, particularly from this 1st album. Seemed in good mood, even if the weather perhaps let things down.
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