Friday, December 22, 2006

and a happy christmas to you!

because it's christmas and it's very cold outside, here's a compilation to warm you up.

consider it an xPQwRtz gift to you.

xpqwrtz compilation number 6

CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD xPQwRtz compilation number 6 (with cover art) - 101MB


band of holy joy - route to love
dragsters - albino
brilliant corners - delilah sands
david westlake - she grew and she grew
coachmen - radical lifestyle
buy off the bar - it’s up to you
3 action - it’s a good laugh
bogshed - loaf
biff bang pow! - lost your dreams
higsons - where’ve all the club a go-go’s went went
big paintings - minitrend friend
bats - made up in blue
datblygu - casserole efeilliaid
bmx bandits - rosemary ledingham
bachelor pad - the albums of jack
blue orchids - disney boys
bIG fLAME - why popstars can’t dance
king of the slums - fanciable headcase
a.c. temple - make mine music
y pants - that’s the way boys are

please note: as usual most of these are taken from my scratchy old vinyl so quality can be a bit poor in places.

enjoy and happy christmas.
see you next year.

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

dodge(y) commer - sutherland arms | stoke on trent | 1988


one day the colgates decided to buy a van to go to gigs in.
we'd been travelling around the country in our morris minor but the poor thing was getting worn out.
we spotted a dodge commer van for sale - it was bright red and looked ace.
we didn't really think about it, just made sure it worked, handed over the money and drove away in it.

our first gig using the van was in stoke on trent - we played with honeycrash and blue light at the sutherland arms.

the dodge commer van is interesting to drive in that the engine is situated in the cab between the driver and passenger seat and you sit over the front wheels, meaning that turning has a very interesting feel - it swings like a bus does - you know, you're still looking forwards as you feel yourself drift to the left or right.

it took some getting used to i can tell you.

anyhow, we loaded the van up and also stuck a morris minor seat that we'd bought in the back as paul colgate and his girlfriend were coming along and there were only two seats up front.

we hadn't realised that the van had a top speed of approximately 40 miles an hour, and that was travelling in a straight line.
the journey to stoke on trent from telford is all winding country lanes.

during the journey we could hear bumps and bangs coming from the back of the van and i'd shout, "everything OK paul?", and get muted responses of, "yeah, fine."

when we finally arrived at the sutherland arms i tried to get into a parking space.
the van was too wide.
so i reversed back out and hit the side of one of the other bands' cars as they entered the car park.

after much apologising i opened the back of the van for paul and vicky to get out.
as the doors swung back i was greeted with the two of them pressed nose-first hard up against the doors, their legs tucked uncomfortably up against their chests.

i'd not bothered securing the seat to the floor in the back of the van and the minute we'd begun our journey the seat, paul and vicky had all begun to slide rather ungratefully around the van being chased by guitars and amplifiers.

they'd finally come to a halt when i hit the car, after sliding at speed from one end of the van to the other.

it was the the first time we used the van for a gig.
it was also the last.

Sunday, December 10, 2006


thanks to the lovely andreas at dancetothesun ALL the xPQwRtz compilations can be downloaded again!

i've fixed all the links in the relative blog entries.
or if you like here are all the compilations to date:

compilation number 1
compilation number 2 - indie girls
compilation number 3 - cover versions
compilation number 4 - cassettes & flexis
compilation number 5.1 - sad songs
compilation number 5.2 - happy songs

thanks again to andreas!


Friday, December 08, 2006

the fourth man? the worst band

my first attempt at being in a band came when i'd just turned 15.
i had a friend at school who had been playing classical guitar since the age of about 5 or 6 and was incredibly good at it.

unfortunately his favourite bands were big country and the proclaimers.
he also had a penchant for the housemartins.

a mutual friend of ours had decided to be a bass player.
mainly due to his love of geddy lee and rush.
he was also a big U2 fan.

i was listening, as you know by now, to a blend of june brides, smiths, sigue sigue sputnik and the jesus and marychain.
i also still liked marillion.
quite a lot.
still do.
oh dear.

one day the two boys - richard and neal - found me in the playground have a kick about and told me their plan.
they'd been writing some songs and wanted me to do the singing.
mainly because i was a bit of a show off.
no one had ever heard me sing.

they gave me a tape of 3 songs they'd recorded on some uncle's 8 track (!yeah i know!) with a heavy drum machine backing.

i listened and listened and then wrote some lyrics, the thought of which now make me feel rather unwell.
they were the lyrics of a 15 year old trying to be deep.
you know - BAD POETRY.
there were probably a couple of lines nicked from truman capote and oscar wilde as that's what morrissey did.

urgh, the cliche's still hurt when i think about them.

anyway, i recorded the lyrics using two tape machines.
one playing the cassette i'd been given and the other recording me singing along.

i was ever so pleased with myself.

we called ourselves the 4th man and neil the bass player went out and bought a geddy lee style white sports jacket in celebration.

our first and last, ahem, "gig" was one morning during school assembly.
we placed the drum machine on a table in the middle of the assembly hall stage and took our positions around it.
bass on the left, guitar on the right, and me in the front.

the rest of the school filed in and giggled and pointed as we waited for our cue.
neil had brought his jacket to school especially and had rolled the sleeves up in geddy's honour.
richard was wearing one of his dad's white button down shirts so that it was all floppy and hung down at the back in the nearest approximation of simple minds as he could manage.
i wore my school uniform.

we played three songs.
in fact we played them pretty well actually.
each one was greeted with sniggers hidden behind applause.
just as we were leaving the stage feeling like we'd just concquered wembley stadium someone shouted out, "NEXT TIME TRY DOING IT WITHOUT MIMING TO THAT TAPE RECORDER!"

turns out everyone thought the drum machine was our backing tape.

that afternoon i left the band.

i no longer have the tapes of the band.