The Null Device

2007/8/11

Last night, I saw Rose Melberg (from The Softies) and Harvey Williams (once known as Another Sunny Day) play. It was an amazing gig; probably one of the gigs of the year.

First up were The Dreamers; I had heard nothing about them before, but they were quite good; melodious indiepop, not a world away from Blueboy. They're definitely one to keep an eye out for.

img 4909 Harvey Williams was great; he first part of his set he played on an electric piano, doing mostly newer songs (i.e., from his 1990s album on Shinkansen; there wasn't a raft of new material), though he then picked up an acoustic guitar and played a bunch of older songs, including You Should All Be Murdered and I'm In Love With A Girl Who Doesn't Know I Exist. It was great to see him performing these songs.

Then there was Rose Melberg's set, which was sublimely lovely. She played acoustic guitar and sang, with a friend from Vancouver (where she lives now) accompanying her on vocal harmonies (much in the way that Jen Sbragia did in the Softies). img 4914 They played for about an hour, doing recent songs, a few older songs (including The Softies' It's Love, which many in the audience sang along with), and some covers. The highlight of the set by far would have to be the cover of The Field Mice's The Last Letter; Rose started it almost apologetically, concerned that she may be committing sacrilege of a sort, proceeded to play a beautiful version (imagine said song as a Softies song and you've got it) and finished to rousing applause. Anyway, there's a video here:

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Tony Wilson, founder of groundbreaking independent label Factory Records, has passed away at the age of 57. Wilson was responsible for bringing Joy Division/New Order to the world's attention, and arguably kickstarted dance/club culture in Manchester by opening the Hacienda nightclub (the first US-style superclub in Britain). Obituaries at the BBC, The Guardian (written by Paul Morley, no less), and Pitchfork.

Update: Momus has a tribute to Tony Wilson; he, of course, is full of praise for the great man, and also reveals that "Hairstyle Of The Devil" was about a (bizarre) love triangle involving himself and Peter Saville's ex-girlfriend Nicki Kefalas, who was handling Factory's promotions.

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