Tag Archives: Cambridge

Frank Turner – Live @ St Paul’s Church In Cambridge

After headlining his biggest show yet at Brixton Academy at the end of 2010, Frank Turner made the decision to go to to the opposite end of the scale to promote his upcoming album – England Keep My Bones – which is due to be released on June 6th.
Last nights venue – a tiny church in the heart of Cambridge – was a brand new experience. After entering, you took your pick – would it be the pews or the tiny standing area at the front? There can’t have been more than 300 people packed into the tiny venue – and it was fantastic!

Photo courtesy of Kon2Photography

First up for the night was Ben Marwood – a singer/songwriter from Reading. Much like Frank, his songwriting style is aggressive and passionate (and sometimes bitter too!), shown by song titles such as ‘Tell Avril Lavigne I Never Wanted To Be Her Stupid Boyfriend Anyway.’ He was a great warm up act and a nice guy too! Check out his website at: http://www.benmarwood.com
Next up was Franz Nicolay – A man whos name and appearance wouldn’t look out of place in Gogol Bordello. Like a thinner, more friendly relative of Mario Kart’s Wario, he was reminiscent of a circus ringleader from way back at the start of the 20th Century! Anyway – lets get to the music! Self described as punk rock cabaret, he has a unique blend of genres that make for a sound that fantastically eccentric, and thought provoking too. A little weird at times, but intriguing none the less! Have a listen to ‘This Is Not A Pipe,’ and check out his website at: http://www.franznicolay.com
Next up was Frank himself – Appearing on stage as understated as ever, breaking into ‘I Knew Prufrock..’ you could tell this was going to be an amazing show!

With the upcoming album, out next Monday, it was inevitable that there would be some new material. The new single ‘Peggy Sang The Blues’ has already been well received with radio play on Xfm and 6Music, as well as another new song ‘I Am Disappeared.’ He played both of these with great success – I can’t wait for the new album! Frank also performed another as yet unreleased track called English Curse – a powerful a cappella song based on English Folklore from the New Forest – Only Frank could!

Other highlights included ‘The Road’, ‘I Still Believe’ and two cover songs – Bruce Springsteen’s Thunder Road and a cover of the Postal Service’s ‘District Sleeps Alone Tonight,’ during which he invited Ben and Franz back on stage, for a new take on one of my favourites. However, the true highlight for me, had to be the final song of the set, ‘The Ballad of Me and My Friends,” where Frank smashed the very few barriers that existed between musician and fan and played the song in the crowd, proving to me that this man is never better than when he’s live – He has to be one of the most passionate men I have ever seen – a truly great performer! Thanks Frank.

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Frank Turner @ The Corn Exchange – December 6th 2010

This week has been a good week! Not only has Beans on Toast’s new album been released, I also went to see a close friend of his, Frank Turner this Monday. Frank Turner is a unique gem of the punk rock world. Having been educated at Eton and hailing from Winchester, he is not exactly a your typical punk rock sewer rat, however don’t think that I hold this against him, because I absolutely do not! Despite his privileged roots, Frank is one of the sensible ones who can see there is still a lot in the world to shout about, and his very special brand of acoustic folk/punk does exactly that.

This year’s tour, much like Beans, sees Frank back on the road with a full band, rather than just him and an acoustic guitar. However before we could experience Frank, first came the support acts! Unfortunately we missed Dive Dive, but arrived in time to see Ed Harcourt – and he was amazing! He produced the single most impressive sound I have ever heard from one man, and he played too many instruments to keep count of, including banjo, guitar (both electric and acoustic), trombone, drums and piano! His songs were really emotive and he kept the whole crowd transfixed throughout. I’ve since listened to his new album, Lustre, and have fallen in love with his weird and wonderful style!

Next up was the main man of the night – Frank Turner took to the stage with the upbeat Eulogy. After briefly calling for our support due to a sore throat, the show went on – see the setlist below:

Highlights for me included ‘The Road’, the new hit-to-be ‘I Still Believe’ with it’s catchy chorus that is sure to get future crowds involved in arenas across the globe! Also, the hilarious ‘Ballad of Steve,’ written by Frank and his friend John Snodgrass about the famous story of flight attendant Steve Slater, who jumped out of a plane after its landing on the runway as a protest against his mundane worklife. Another personal highlight was Long Live The Queen and, of course, Photosynthesis – a great way to end an amazing night!

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Artist Of The Week – Crazy Arm

Sorry, this hasn’t exactly been a regular feature – I’ve had barely any time recently! Anyway, this week, we have Crazy Arm – a band I discovered through a Free CD with Big Cheese Magazine.

Crazy Arm have described themselves as ‘Fugazi with Banjos, but without banjos!’ The release of their debut album – Born To Ruin, Crazy Arm┬áprovides a high energy mix of punk, rock, blues, folk and country music. These guys are seriously talented, with a lot of technical guitar parts, that are sure to leave you feeling dizzy!

I would have been to see them in November, as part of the Against Me! tour which I’m sure you will see has been cancelled unfortunately.

I’ve heard that the band are planning to start a UK tour in December if anybody is interested. They play a lot of free shows all over the place, and I really feel that these guys have a lot of potential. Check out the track ‘Blind Summit’ below from Born to Ruin, and you may be pleasantly surprised!

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Against Me! – Tour Cancelled

It’s a shame to hear that Against Me! have cancelled their upcoming tour dates for the end of 2010. They haven’t yet given a reason, however I expect it must be quite serious for such a long period of cancellation.

I have also spoken to Darren Johns on Facebook, the lead singer of Crazy Arm (one of the support acts for the tour) and even they have not be told exactly why their tour has been cancelled. They have been given the same reason as everybody else – ‘due to unforeseen circumstances.’ I have been thinking and thinking but can’t seem to work out anything that could happen that would lead to the band being so secretive for so long.

I had tickets for a show on November 1st at the Junction in Cambridge that I was really looking forward to, so I’m gutted that it’s cancelled, but I hope that everything’s okay with the band.

I’ll be checking their website for any updates. If anybody else has any news, a comment would be greatly appreciated.

George

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