- To The Bone by Steven Wilson: terrific new solo album from Mr Wilson that seems to be gathering a bit of mainstream attention. This is annoying a few purists but that can only be a good thing.
- If tattoos could talk: Glen Campbell’s life in music: excellent and not at all mawkish tribute to Glen Campbell by Kate Mossman in the New Statesman.
- Judge Dredd The Complete Casebook Files 14: I started reading 2000 AD again recently and it led me on to rereading some of these old Dredd stories. They really are excellent and have stood the test of time remarkably well.
It’s almost exactly two years since I bought the Apple Watch and I’m still wearing it every day. Same model (black Sports) and same strap. Same battery life. I have no intention of buying a newer version as this does everything I need.
It’s not an essential item and I’m still not convinced it has a future. I don’t know anyone else who has one or who even talks about them. Saying that it has become a part of my daily life and I’ll continue to wear this thing until the battery starts to fail. No sign of that yet.
You can tell the good review writers from the bad simply by looking at the word count. The best music writers can distill the essence of an album down to a paragraph or two. The worst amateurs will take a whole page to give you a track by track literal description of the music. They’ll make a load of comparisons to other bands and say absolutely nothing.
It’s why I rarely make attempts to review things. I know my limits. Anything resembling a review on this site is really just an attempt to make a record of something I’ve liked.
Back to the Royal Concert Hall in Glasgow to see Anderson Rabin Wakeman (ARW)…
I upgraded my seat from the one in the gods to this much better view…
It was a great show. I surprised myself at how emotional I got when Jon Anderson entered the stage. He really is in great voice and skipped around the stage like someone fifty years younger.
Rick Wakeman is as good as ever. His parts in Awaken were stunning.
Trevor Rabin is a very different kind of player than Steve Howe and it showed in the older songs. The overall sound was excellent though.
Special mention should go the “hired hands” especially bass player Lee Pomeroy who is just amazing. His extended solo during The Fish was spectacular and a wonderful tribute to Chris Squire.
It was a great night and, unlike some fans, I’m very happy to have two bands out playing this music. Another union would be nice though. We can dream.
A nice bit of news to start the New Year. Pre-orders are now being taken for Big Big Train’s Blu Ray documentary about how they prepared for their return to live performance. It contains a mix of studio “live” performances and four songs from the momentous London shows back in August.
Pre-orders can be made here.
Once again I didn’t get to many shows this year but those I did see were all pretty special.
1. Big Big Train, Kings Place, London
The much anticipated live debut of the current BBT line up and they really did us proud. The setlist was perfect and David Longdon revealed himself to be a wonderful front person. Theatrical and confident. A very expensive weekend but worth every penny. Highlight: East Coast Racer.
2. King Crimson, Usher Hall, Edinburgh
I never expected to see Crimson live so was a big deal. The band were on top form, the setlist was great, and the three drummer frontline was a stroke of genius. Highlight for me was a pounding version of Red.
3. Fish, ABC, Glasgow
A fantastic and triumphant end to another troubled Fish tour. A sell out crowd, brilliant support from Lazuli, and a jubilant Fish made this a night to remember. Highlight: White Feather.
4. Steve Hackett, Royal Concert Hall, Glasgow
A showcase of Steve’s whole career spanning new album Wolflight and debut Voyage Of The Acolyte with a set of classic Genesis in the second half. It’s always a joy to see Steve Hackett. Prog god Roine Stolt on bass was a nice addition. Highlight: the sequence of tracks from Voyage…
5. The Enid, Websters Theatre, Glasgow
Another terrific show by The Enid. Venue was a bit cramped for the ambitious stage show but, technical problems aside, this was a funny and moving performance. I look forward to seeing them again in March. Highlight:it was great to hear In The Region Of The Summer Stars again.
6. Crosby, Stills & Nash, Royal Concert Hall, Glasgow
Still sounding great after decades of playing together. Crosby and Nash still sing beautifully together. Stephen Stills is showing his age but can still sing and play guitar brilliantly. A great setlist again and it was nice to see the real old hippies of Glasgow turn out for the show. Highlight: Wooden Ships.
7. Music For 18 Musicians, Steve Reich, Royal Concert Hall, Glasgow
Great performance of one of my favourite pieces of music. Steve Reich was in the audience which made the event a bit more special.