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LTW Newsletter 27

Welcome Warriors!

Omincom omnishambles!

Hope everyone is ok out there and we can hold tight for the next few bumpy weeks. Covid doesn't seem to have finished with us yet but we will work round those damn strands of RNA. So far it seems our culture is hanging in there by its fingernails despite the government of Worzel Gummidge and his legions of straw. Maybe they are staggering us through xmas to get the festive moolah and then locking us all up in January but apart from the great Rockaway beach festival and a couple of other things we mainly hibernate in that iron cold month anyway.

Meanwhile we have been getting out whilst we can…

The Human League put on a triumphant show at Manchester’s arena celebrating their ground breaking album, Dare. Great song writing and brilliant production from Martin Rushent (arguably the best producer in the punk and post punk period but without the credit) created a landmark album that changed the shape and sound of pop and it still sounds as fresh today. Especially live.

We were sorry to lose Mensi from the Angelic Upstarts due to Covid. We were mates with the great man who had a heart as big punk rock and whose death has seen an avalanche of love pour our for him. The Upstarts were always far better than they even knew and their roughshod songs had a surpisingly large amount off pop sass about them

Mensi died the same day as the great Mike Nesmith from the Monkees. Like many people my age the Monkees were the first band that we fell in love with and Mike’s coolness was perhaps the first time that we got a glimpse to the world beyond pop when we were about seven years old. Stuff the prefab four crap the Monkees sounded great no matter who write the songs - like Elvis they sang them and that made them eternal. (Mike was a great songwriter as well…)

We also lost the great Robbie Shakespeare - it was truly a shitty week for music icons.

The Darkness have that whiff of tinsel about them and xmas is surely the time of year for their hi jinx. It’s amazing they have survived and even more amazing that they once pulled 40 000 people to two nights at Manchesters Arena and that they can still sell out 2300 cap venues…power to them

These are tough times and everyone is making a landgrab but why do some venues take a cut from band’s merch T shirt sales? Tim Burgess from the Charlatans picked up on this again recently and it reminded us of our piece from 2015 which we ran again sparking a new debate about venues that like to take a 25 per cent cut for band's selling their merch.

The Cure finally announced their 2022 Euro tour - lots of huge venues that’s this article explains how they will fill them with their big dark energy sound. It’s one of the key tours of 2022 and a chnace to welcome the top 10 things that make the Cure one of the best live bands in the world.

Dave Gahan has been taking time out from Depeche Mode and his solo London show was well received by our reviewer.

Anna von Hauswolff is one of our total faves - her dramatic church organ driven music is full of Gothic splendour and dynamics and is tailor made to play in churches. The songs are emotional and yearning and have no sense the devilish glint of some pop culture about them which makes the DEMONstration by religious types that caused her to cancel two shows in churches in France even more baffling.

James have become one of the biggest bands who ever came out of the Manchester thing and their recent sold out arena show in the city was a triumph for a band who have stuck to their own guns musically and have a fascinating catalogue of songs behind them.

In the meantime you can listen to Louder Than War end of the year albums

Or you can read one of LTW books of the year…

Or if stuck for xmas present then but one John Robb’s books from here…

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