Damian’s Top 20 Gigs


It’s fair to say that if the rest of MV have never heard of it, Damian is there to tells us “you’d probably have enjoyed it.” Or put another way, the only way you’ll ever see any mention of the Killers or Franz Ferdinand on MVM is if Damian sends a review in. There is some good stuff here too, mind you. 

Just over eighty gigs this year so interesting to narrow it down to twenty for the year

 FFS – Franz Ferdinand Sparks – Barrowlands, Glasgow – August. 

Best show of the year by miles. Superb venue, superb crowd and two bands enjoying the stage together. Colaborations and their own songs wonderfully executed

 U2 – 03 Dublin – November 

Only show that came near to FFS. U2 stripped back as stripped back can be in a 14000 capacity stadium

Playing at home their most personal album to date. Breathtaking at times

 Andy White – Kitchen Garden Café, Birmingham – April 

Northern Ireland Troubadour now an Australian resident paying his annual visit to Brum. Wonderfully intimate show  enhanced with a scratch choir of fans from Wales. Requested my fave song and he played it such is the mettle of this artist

 Adam Ant  Copper Rooms – Coventry – April 

Excellent gig showcasing the debut album Dirk Wears White Sox from 1979 which includes the magnificent Car Trouble. Intense show where hecklers were given short shrift.

 Graham Parker and Brindley Schwarz – Huntingdon Hall, Worcester – May 

Great show from the Rumour stalwarts in the fantastic setting of a former chapel dating from 1773. Solo stuff and a few classics make a cracking night

 Tir Na Nog – Kitchen Garden Café, Birmingham – May 

Irish prog folk duo sharing tracks from albums from forty years ago and recent releases. Wonderful version of Nick Drake`s Free Ride thrown in for good measure

 Brandon Flowers – O2 Academy, Birmingham – May 

Killers front man delivers a mixture of solo and band standards in a Vegas style

 Ricky Warwick and Damien Johnson – Iron Road Bar, Evesham – June 

Cracker of a show from probably the most hardworking guys in Rock. Thin Lizzy, Black Star Riders and Almighty anthems, alongside Rock standards and heartfelt stories. Superb night

 Counting Crows – Civic Hall, Wolverhampton – June 

One off festival warm up show in a rammed venue which had the crowd eating out of Adam Duritz`s hand

Forgotten how good this band were.

 Anvil – 02 Academy 3, Birmingham – July 

Canadian Heavy Metal trio on fine form in this intimate venue. Worth the admission price alone to see Steve “the Lips” Kudlow playing a guitar solo with a dildo

 Sonics- The Library, Institute, Birmingham – July 

Sixties Garage rock band blitz Brum with their no nonsense in your face rock n roll. Would leave bands half their age in their wake

British Lion – Rainbow Warehouse, Birmingham – August  

Side project of Iron Maiden`s bassist and principal song writer. Straight up British hard rock at it’s best

 Killing Joke – Institute, Birmingham- October 

The return of the classic line up and with Jaz Coleman at his menacing best an extremely intense show.

A wonderful tribute to departed local boy in the shape of Love Like Blood was a classy move from the band

 Eagles of Death Metal – Institute, Birmingham- November 

Unexpectedly funky show from this Californian band with plenty of 70`s style Dad dancing from Jesse Hughes.

A week before the tragic events in Paris.

 Echo and the Bunnymen / The Buzzcocks – Ricoh Stadium, Coventry – December 

Excellent double bill, Buzzcocks on fine form with all their classic three minute ditties followed by Mr McCulloch on fine form spilling out his usual acerbic wit

 Black Star Riders – Wulfrun Hall, Wolverhampton – December 

Top show from a top band in form. Very likely the hardest working band at present

 The Lurkers – The Cellar, Rainbow, Birmingham – October 

70`s London punk band led by the irrepressible Arturo Bassick. Cracking show highlighting wonderful tracks such as Come and reminisce if you think you’re old enough and New Guitar in town. Arturo could be a stand up comedian if he packed in the day job

“Weird Al” Yancovic – O2 Academy, Birmingham – October 

Mixture of Video clips, costume changes, parodies and polkas. Two hours of sing along tunes and hilarity. Couldn’t help but love this show

 Crow Black Chicken – Robin 2, Bilston – February 

Three piece Blues rock band from Cork, Ireland. Superb songs, great guitar playing and humour between numbers. Lead vocalist Christy sported a very fetching Hawaiian shirt as well

 The Last Great Dreamers – Iron Road Bar, Evesham – April 

Wonderful Retro glam rock from this four piece. Good old fashioned Rock n roll played how it should be

So another great year of live music and so looking forward to what 2016 has to offer

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