Thursday, September 21, 2006


I've grown up with the hippies now.....

Trying to think of the best line from 'The Only Living Boy In New Cross' for the title as this week I saw Saints thrash Millwall 4-0. Fairly uneventful weekend, but did do a crawl of the newtown area of Sutton. The four main pubs were all relatively quiet for a Saturday but the Little Windsor was open till midnight. Just before this though we tried to head back to the High Street. It appears the Sutton nee Nonsuch Arms now closes at midnight too (instead of one) meaning the only pubs that are free to get in after midnight are the Treasury, where loud booming music came out of, or the Wetherspoons. The Moon On The Hill (the spoons) was very depressing that time of night. I find it ok earlish evening if only cause some 18 totty are wearing next to nothing, but even teenagers have the sense to move on when they are drunk enough for the evening! This leaves mainly old alcoholic men. To be fair there were a small number of normal people scatterred about (myself and friend amongst them) but hardly a great place to drink. All Sutton needs is one more place to open till one that doesn't have loud music and it'll be ok. Rather bizarrely, presumably on council's orders, all the bouncers were wearing luminous bin-liners with the word security written on them.

Tuesday I dared the trip to Millwall. Even dared to visit a couple of pubs in New Cross. The Amersham Arms, a music venue pub, was ok. Goldsmiths college is nearby and a few students were dotted around at 6.30pm. Then I had a ten minute walk to the Five Bells. A large pub on a corner, plenty of floor space and a smallish bar. I was served by a short, fairly pleasent to look at, blonde eastern european barmaid and watched the various team news on Sky Sports News here. A strange notice was by the gents asking non-customers using them to contribute towards the charity box. Anyway no threatening yobbos were in here and a nice pre-match pint was had. Onto the game and a fairly comfortable 4-0 victory for us. As it happens, most of the yobbos seem to have disappeared as the attendence was scarcley above 5000. To avoid being locked in as Millwall fans left the station I had to say I drove and walked round with the locals to South Bermondsey station where the 21.53 got me back to Suttton with plenty of time to spare for a final pint of the day in the Old Bank.

Friday, September 15, 2006


Dirty Pretty Things - Coronet 13.9.06

New venue for me the Coronet. Next to the Elephant & Castle. Evening hadn't started that great. First of all, I had been nursing a cold since the weekend, secondly after being a cheapskate and buying a return train ticket to E&C rather than a travelcard I was horrified to see that my train was 54 minutes late! Two minutes later this changed to cancelled as there was a broken down train in City Thameslink causing congestion. Fortuanately the Victoria service was also delayed so I had five minutes to decide that getting this train to Clapham and then one onto Vauxhall would get me reasonably near and this I did. Getting out at Vauxhall I saw a sign telling me I was one mile away so decided I had plenty of time to walk and maybe stop at one or two pubs that were showing the European footie that evening. First stop was the White Hart. A gastropub with one telly at the side of the bar. When I got here I noticed it start to rain outside & obviously I had no coat or umbrella! Having made my pint last the first half hour of the game I decided to press on thinking there would be another pub on the way. Of course there wasn't and having found the venue I was fairly soaked. Still got a start time and found out I had about forty minutes before they were on so went to the nearby Wetherspoons (Rockingham Arms) and Elephant & Castle pubs opposite the latter had the second half of Man U Celtic on. Highlight for me was Paul Telfer coming on to change things!
Onto the gig. The Coronet was similar to the Forum in Kentish Town. Bar at the back and a drop down a few stairs to the actual floor area, with raised bits either side. Dirty Pretty Things were introduced by Russel Brand (a man described in that days metro as a tosser!) He wasn't funny and took about 10 minutes in his introduction. DPTs came on and opened with 'You F---ing Love It'. The sound and view were good and 'Deadwood' was an early highlight. For 'Gin And Milk' it was surprise guest time with Paul Weller being dragged out and then disappeearing as soon as the song ended. Three or four new songs were played which sounded ok before ending the first bit before the encore with 'Bang Bang You're Dead' their best song. Now call me a traditionist but bands should only comeback for an encore if there's demand for it. Here, after the band walked off there was no cheering or clapping merely background chat. Obviously no-one was leaving but I wouldn't have blamed the band for calling it a night at this stage, and although there was a cheer when they returned it was hardly a deserved encore. Still, they bought back Weller who introduced a sond he hadn't performed for 26 years. It was the Jam's 'In The City' but the fact Carl Barratt took vocals and Weller stood at the back strumming a guitar that may not even have been plugged in could hardly count as performing. Once again Weller departed after three minutes and DPTs stormed into their only Libertines song and last one of the night 'I Get Along'. Very good it was too and allowed me to get on the penultimute train home. Alas having stopped raining when I got on, as I approached home there was one of the most electric lightning storms I have seen. I got home not as soaked as I could have been using some free newspapers from the train as shelter!

Tuesday, September 12, 2006


Sulphur at Tone's Sunday 10th September

An afternoon show for us at Tone's bar in North Cheam. After a bit of a technical hitch which saw Matt change his guitar we started with a loose jam to soundcheck based around the 'Try To Write' riff. This was actually sounded pretty good for an improv and was well received by the forty or so in the crowd. With both guitars plugged rather than using a separate 'pick-up' we managed to get a slightly harder sound that suited the songs more. Besides the beginnig improv we didn't try anything unusual in our set so all came across confidently. I particuarly enjoyed 'Its Been Ages Becky' and the arm-waving in the crowd (& a lighter) for 'Share This World'. The louder volume allowed us to let fly in 'Sproston Green' for an extended ending compelte with windmills and Springsteen style jumps. A very satisfying performance, must get recording soon!

Sulphur Set - Try To Write (jam) / Try To Write / London Calling / We're So Clever / Fade Out Of Sight / It's Been Ages Becky / This Is How It Feels / Share This World / Sproston Green

Friday, September 08, 2006


Intrepid Fox

Found out this pub is closing on Monday 11/9. An outrage! This is a must visit on any trip to London. A true rock pub it is a travisty that it is being sold for flats. Not that it'll make much difference there is a petition at which I have signed.
I made a special visit Saturday, coming back from Ipswich to enjoy a final pint in one of London's truly historic and great pubs. Despite having to queue for half an hour to get in, and making a charitable donation on admittance I was not disappointed. Heard AC/DC, Van Halen and BonJovi all at a reasonable volume and mingled with many rock fans including several rock chicks! As a gordie bloke in an Angelic Upstarts T-Shirt said, it's a great shame and he had to make an effort to show his respects for a truly unique place. We'll have to wait and see where the London Rock & Alternative scene make their new home, but I doubt it will have the tradition od a truly fine pub.



4 Bills, Bad Influence and Crouch on Fire!

Relatively quiet week. Friday saw Four Bills play Sutton United FC. Four Bills are a rotating line up of professional musicians led by Johnny Warman playing a mixture of Rnb, Rocknroll and Mod classics. Things like 'Louie Louie' 'My Generation' & 'Sweet Home Chicago' all hit the mark and for two hours entertaiment you can't really argue.
Saturday, watched the England - Andorra game (pointless, AFC Wimbledon would give them a better game!) before going to the Windsor Castle in Carshalton where Bad Influence (a local blues group with Thunder's drummer Harry James) were playing. Fewer covers than normal but they did end with 'Keep Your Hands To Yourself' so it wasn't too bad a night. Noticeably about 80% of the clientiele were smokers which is unusual in this day and age. Maybe something to do with Blues music.
Finally watched Crouch continue his goal run in the Hand & Racquet in Wimbledon with a few mates. Bit of a crap game though did get a good seat at a big table in front of one of the tellys.
As for this weekend, firstly I am off to Ipswich tomorrow for the Saints. Always like going to Portman Road, quite a few good pubs and alawys a good view from the away area.
Sunday, sulphur play Tone's at North Cheam for an afternoon set. Believe we're on around 2.30/3pm for a solid half hour set. Should be fun although with Matt being on honeymoon there's been hardly any rehearsal time so don't expect any new stuff / surprises as we'll be sticking more or less to what we know!

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