THE CRIMEA

Time For News

Sorry sorry sorry. It flooded. Not here like but any excuse’ll do… Just as you get used to the Crimea actually keeping the same line-up for longer than a year, Andy ups and leaves. Well good luck to you Mr, but who’s gonna join up next? Well watch this space, as I have a strangely psychic knack of predicting new Crimea members. Now, who else thinks that one from The Go Team! would fit well?

Ok, news. The Beijing Beat blog on Claus.com has a long story on the band’s first trip to China. Apparently they’re going back for more in September when they play the Pop Festival.

Free album stories haven’t gone away; the News & Star site features an update on the release with comments from Andy Stafford. Prospect Magazine have a quick mention in a wider free music article, the Independent have an even quicker name drop and the Guardian give em two lines. Though none of them are as pesimistic as Sweeping The Nation’s take on events though.

I think this stuff from La Burroteca is written in Spanish. Theres a donkey. And a pic of LWOA. I know no more…

Gig reviews
now, and Dr Alex Hale III (yeah, sure…) was so impressed with the band’s Modest Mouse support that he popped along to see em headline at Birmingham’s Bar Academy too.


Big As the Beatles, In China

British rockers The Crimea see China, not America, as the place to crack on the road to global domination

The things you have to do to get a name in China. Like playing a half hour set to Communist Party cadres in a cinema in Wangjing, an industrial zone on Beijing’s northeast outskirts. “We were cultural envoys,” explains Owen Hopkin, drummer of British band The Crimea, who caught up with Beijing Beat in a Beijing tea house recently. “The inititiave was taken by the British Council and our local label, Jingwen. The translator didn’t translate very well and the band got shunted around between bemused officials for photos, handshakes and “how’s your plectrum” before they boarded and bus for the hour long ride back up to a hotel miles away in Haidian district.

London-based The Crimea picked up the invitation after Hopkin came out to Beijing in September 2006 with the British-based Association of Independent Music and the Department of Trade & Industry. A wiry and wily drummer, Hopkin isn’t short of good ideas, or a knack for doing things the Chinese way. He had the Crimea draw up a Communist-style five year plan to world domination. It didn’t involve a big record deal or conquering America: Rather, free downloads of the group’s second album, and going to China. “If we can be big in China it can be Beatlemania on a scale not even the Beatles experienced!”

So far the 5 year plan seems to be running politburo-smooth. The band’s second album Secrets of the Witching Hour scored 11,000 downloads in two days when posted on the band’s website. “You don’t make much money selling physical CDs any more,” explains Hopkin. “The cash comes from merchandising and publishing and live concerts. We have to get it out to those who wouldn’t normally buy the Crimea.”

The PR value of the stunt may be convincing those punters. Britain’s music press and trend-setting radio shows played the songs for the novelty – it helped that the Crimea is also talented. The Crimea began life as The Crocketts, signing to a UK major label, V2, in 1998 with which the group recorded two albums. In 2001 Hopkin and singer Davey MacManus formed The Crimea, which they compare to their former band in an early press release: “if the Crocketts were four cavemen banging stones together, [then] this is the sound of four Tchaikovskys banging Kylie Minogue”.

Chinese music impresarios liked the sound when Hopkin came over last September with a satchel of CDs and tramped all over Beijing handing them out. “I met as many industry people as he could get around to. “I handed over a lot of CDs and met with MIDI and the Beijing Pop Festival and with ring tones people.”

The organizers of the MIDI Festival, Beijing’s annual left-field rock festival put them on the main stage. “We were sandwiched between two heavy metal bands. It was really chilled out.” Always sensitive to the PR value of a trip to the world’s most populous nation, Hopkin, himself a sometimes contributor to Britain’s Kerrang! magazine, convinced a rock writer from British daily The Independent to come along to document a Crimean MIDI set and a week gigging Beijing during the annual socialist-style May holiday in the Chinese capital.

“There were no toilets backstage and only four toilets on the whole site! You had to find different ways of peeing before you go on stage.” The crowd made up for the lousy sanitation: they were “going apeshit” during the band’s set. Though the band didn’t pick up a fee, they commend the hospitality and stage hands supplied by the organizers, a European-funded modern music school of the same name, which runs the festival on a shoestring budget. Denmark’s Ministry of Culture helped with the stage. “There were good stage and sound managers. There were a lot of Danes helping out.”

Just as well money wasn’t a priority for the Crimea’s China tour. Aside from the Midi main stage, the Crimea played five other shows, during six days in China. The EUR15 they got from the New Get Lucky Bar was enough to pay for the taxis home after the show. Mao Live was more generous: EUR80 – split between the five of them. A typical bar gig in UK yields the group GBP500 while a recent club show for Carling beer was worth GBP5,000 to the band. “After a week here you realize quickly that it’s not the country for making a quick buck in as a rock band.”

Venues in China are very small by UK standards, says Hopkins. Whereas the band fits nicely into the Barfly’s chain – capacity 150 – China has cramped bars and karaoke parlours. Recently opened Mao Live was about right: it fits 150. The Stone Boat gig was to “expats” and not what the band flew out for. The coziest venue in the city, 2 Kollegas, worked best. “You get the impression it’s the wild west, but not really.”

And what of the local talent? There’s “pockets,” says Hopkins. “[Joy Division-like] Retros are very good. Tongue is very good, so was PK14. You come out as a western artist thinking you know the score. But come out here and there’s good local musicans playing conventional western style. We wouldn’t have the first idea how to play Chinese musical styles. Right now they’re not creating so much as copying, but that will develop.” As for The Crimea singing in Chinese. “Well, singing in Welsh might be a problem!”

Seven shows in six days was a lot, even for this group, which, in five years together has toured with the likes of Stereophonics and Snow Patrol. “We came out prepared for the worst and expecting the best and went home exhausted.” Aside from cramped venues and lousy pay, language was a barrier. “The whole equipment thing was very stressful, having to lug cases around town in taxis with hardly a word of Chinese between us.”

The Crimea hopes to be back for the Beijing Pop Festival 2007. “It’s important to come out here because at the moment they don’t distinguish between the Crimea and the White Stripes. Rock is a niche.” It’s not like the band is unknown in China. The band’s first album has already been bootlegged here whileSecrets of the Witching Hour came out in June through a subsidiary of state-run record distributor/label Jingwen. Big as the Beatles, in China? “It’s definitely a punt.”

Article by Mark Godfrey for Claus.com, 02/07/07.


BAND’S UNITED FRONT

Record release:  The Crimea, from left, Joe Udwin, Andy Norton, Davey Macmanus, Andy Stafford and Open Hopkin
Record release: The Crimea, from left, Joe Udwin, Andy Norton, Davey Macmanus, Andy Stafford and Open Hopkin

THE impact of the internet on the music industry has been well documented in the world’s press. It broke chart-topping bands such as Arctic Monkeys, and major record labels have blamed download and file-sharing sites for a major slump in record sales.

So when The Crimea decided to release Secrets of the Witching Hour as a download – and for free – they expected some press attention.

According to the band’s keyboard player Andy Stafford, the media response was way beyond what they expected.

He says: “We created a bit of a storm. There were articles in the New York Times, the Hindu Times, and the Wall Street Journal. We didn’t really think it was going to be this big a story – it has been crazy.”

Although signed by music giants Warner three years ago, The Crimea’s debut Tragedy Rocks failed to make as big a splash as the label had hoped.

Davey Macmanus (vocals, guitar), Owen Hopkin (drums ), Andy Norton (guitar), Joe Udwin (bass, backing vocals) and Andy (keyboards, backing vocals) parted company with Warner 10 months ago and set out to record their own album on a shoestring budget of around £12,000, compared to the hundreds of thousands of dollars Warner could have put behind them.

Faced with the daunting task of finding a label for the finished result, the band decided instead to release the album for free as a download, the idea being to reach a greater number of potential fans and spread the word online.

Andy, who went to Cockermouth School and whose family still lives in Cumbria, says: “A lot of people use the internet now just to listen to and download music – it’s shared a lot easier. We thought that instead of getting another record deal we would use the internet. It would be free to do and it would get it out to as many people as possible around the world and build a fanbase as a stepping stone to the next record.

“It’s quite a controversial approach within the industry, but it’s welcomed as well by some people as a brave way for a band to get their music out.

“For all bands trying to break out the big challenge is getting people to hear your music. So many great bands come and go but never get the opportunity to get anywhere as people don’t know who they are.”

The approach seems to have paid off so far, with downloads of the album since May hitting the 50,000 mark, in contrast to the 35,000 copies of the previous album sold.

Andy studied history at Manchester Metropolitan University before moving to London and working as a public relations officer.

He joined the band in 2002 and left his day job two years later to chase the dream of life as a rock star. The Crimea have since toured with the likes of Travis, the Stereophonics and Echo and the Bunnymen.

The band have recently been on tour in China and feel their novel approach has given them a worldwide platform they might otherwise not have achieved.

Despite some criticism in the press, it would appear that the old adage ‘no publicity is bad publicity’ rings true. The internet release has brought The Crimea to the attention of fans and industry types they might otherwise have struggled to attract.

According to Andy, the band’s new album is more well-rounded than their previous effort.

He said: “It feels a bit more complete than the last record but we wrote those songs over five or six years. These ones were written over a year or two and there are similar themes.

“Davey’s lyrics are quite dry and wistful. They can be quite dark about our future but also quite romantic.

“It was totally our own choice. When you’re signed to a major label you get told a lot what direction they want you to take but this album is completely us.”

“What it [the internet release] has done is raise the bar for the band and given us a higher profile which is what we meant to do – get our name out there and stimulate demand with labels. They like bands to have their own fanbase ready to go.

“This has given us the power to build that more and more – it’s given us the exposure. We’re in control of our own destiny.”

Secrets of the Witching Hour is out on The Crimea’s own Free, Two, One label from music stores, or it can still be downloaded for free from www.thecrimea.net

Article from the News & Star, 05/07/07.


Off the record

In recent years, the economics of pop music have been upended. The market for CDs has collapsed, and not even the rise of legal downloading can offset the damage to record companies. Meanwhile, demand for live performances has rocketed

In May, Enter Shikari started out on their first American tour. They have set an inspirational example, not least by their single-minded prioritising of their performances. Groups used to tour, often at a loss, to stimulate sales of their latest album. Now it’s the other way around. Hence the widely reported decision earlier this year by the Crimea, a band previously signed to Warner Bros, to release their new album as a free download. The band explained this not as an anarcho-hippie gesture in support of the principle that music ought to be free, but as a sensible promotional tactic. Their hope is that by disseminating their music online, they will expand their fan base and increase their returns from touring. Having seen the small size of the cheques they got from Warner, they know where not to look for their future income.

This view is shared by a far more famous former Warner artist: Prince. Anyone attending his shows at the London O2 arena in August will receive a free copy of his latest CD, Planet Earth, as did anyone who bought the Mail on Sunday on 15th July. Prince’s new label, Sony/BMG, which did not know about the deal, has withdrawn the album from British shelves.

Article by Robert Sandall for Prospect Magazine issue 237, August 2007.


With the rise of downloads, are albums now dead?

It began at this year’s Isle of Wight Festival, when Ash’s Tim Wheeler announced mid-set: “This is the last song of our final album.” Were the Northern Ireland trio set to split? All was revealed a week later, when the group put out a statement explaining that they would cease to put out albums, yet continue to put out tracks on a regular basis.

“Their publishing deal is up. I suspect their record deal may be up after this album too,” one poster writes, adding that Ash share management with The Crimea. This is the band dropped by Warner Bros last year, who went on to record an album, Secrets of the Witching Hour, available to download free from their website. At the time, the band said they hoped to tour extensively off the back of the record and have gone on to support Billy Corgan, Modest Mouse and Snow Patrol.

Article by Chris Mugan for the Independent, 29/06/07.


Smells like indie spirit

In the Eighties you knew where you stood with indie music but, twenty years later, ‘indie’ means major-label, mainstream guitar bands like Snow Patrol and Coldplay. But there are welcome signs of a return to the genre’s DIY roots

But something is happening that might just revitalise the original indie spirit: 21 years after C86 acted out its quiet revolution, the do-it-yourself ethic is back. Arctic Monkeys – a band that built up a grass-roots following before signing to independent label Domino while remaining in control of their songs and their image – are the Smiths of this scene, and bands such as Koopa, from Essex, and John Peel favourites the Crimea have sustained careers by releasing their songs as digital downloads – in the Crimea’s case, for free. As major labels crumble, sites like MySpace and last.fm act as free publicity machines, and internet forums provide a new way to connect communities of like-minded people.

Article by Jude Rogers for the Guardian, 08/07/07.


You hooked up with pain when you hooked up with me

Acabo de leer un articulo sobre el genero indie y lo que significa actualmente versus lo que significaba digan ustedes en los ’80. Es un articulo largo pero muy muy bueno.

En el articulo se menciona una banda sobre la cual hace rato queria escribir que es The Crimea. Las letras son geniales.

O acaso conocen alguna banda que hable sobre terodactilos y sobre Rapunzel recibiendo quimioterapia?

Es mas, “Secrets of the Witching Hour”, el ultimo trabajo de los manes esta completamente disponible para bajarlo gratis. E incluso tiene el arte para imprimirlo y todo. Bajen el trabajo de aqui.

Un muy buen sitio sobre los manes es este. Y (obviamente!) tiene musica de los manes en vivo.

Pero saben que tema me encanta y me cautiva? “Man“. Con ese verso que pregunta:

When armagedon comes,
when time begins again,
will you still work the earth,
will I still be your man
?”

Article by K-milo for La Burroteca, 11/08/07.


Gig Cheese: Modest Mouse w/The Crimea (27/05/2007)

The second exciting piece of news came in the form of the support act. Being open to new music, I often check the listings of my local venues and consider checking out “new” bands that are playing nearby who I have heard about from fellow music fans. One such band is The Crimea. My good friend Nicola (AKA Nicocacola) Patten (from t’Guillemots forum) was into them, and she had previously recommended other good bands to me, so I was anxious to check them out. An incentive came when I was informed that their second album was online to download for free at their website. I jumped straight on the bandwagon and downloaded it, resulting in my pleasant suprise. So, I booked tickets to see them at the start of June, then found out that they were also the support for Modest Mouse! Hooray!

We arrived later than I wanted to (grrr) and there were a bunch of ugly kids already there. I hate ugly kids. Bastards. It was raining, so everyone who wasn’t under a cover couldn’t be arsed to queue so took shelter elsewhere. Idiots. We managed to get in quite fast, but The Crimea hadn’t done soundchecking yet, so we had to queue inside, too. This was the Achilles’ Heal of the plan; while I went to the toilet, my dad failed to rejoin the queue after accquiring drinks, so we were further back than one would desire. Inside, we were on the second/third row, which wasn’t too bad, but I’d rather have been first.

The Crimea were amazing; all but two of their songs were from their “free” album (I accquired the first album between this gig and their headlining show a week later) and I recognised all of them. Hooray! Not everybody liked them, though – including my dad, though I think he was probably expecting a more “conventional” vocalist than Davey.


Their set went:
1. Loop A Loop
2. Man
3. Several Thousand Years of Talking Nonsense
4. Wierd
5. Requieum Aeternam
6. Lottery Winners on Acid
7. Someone’s Crying
It was indeed a good time.

Review by Alex from Last.fm, 26/07/08.


Gig Cheese: The Crimea w/The Lines and Undercut (02/06/2007)

I’ve noticed that – at least recently – all of my music blogs have begun with some sort of summary of the band I’m writing about seeing, or at least a brief description of how I discovered them. It’s become a cliché of Gig Cheese (one that’s hard to remove, especially as I’ve recently made the decision to break-up the installments in order to allow me to report more frequently, thus leaving me with a need to introduce the band I’m going to talk about in order to get things going), but this review, I would like to start a little bit differently. I would like to talk, instead, about the importance of friends. Now, while I do consider myself to be a man (I use the term somewhat loosely – not because I’m not ACTUALLY a man, but because I am but 18 and it seems bizarre to be throwing around the “grown up” terms for things) with many friends, though not necessarily many GOOD friends. In fact, many of my closest friends are those confined to the realms of internet – as evidenced by my Myspace top friends, 5 of whom I see in real-life on a regular basis (only one of whom, the friend who this is addressed at in particular, made it any higher than the bottom line). There may be many reasons for this – the most likely, however, is that most of the people I know are idiots. Very sad, but very true. Anyway, an important factor in any friendship should be the willingness to be there for one another when you are needed. Seeing The Crimea was an example of such an event.

The story begins, of course, with my discovery of the band. I had noticed their name several times on the Carling Academy’s listings page, but it was not until my good friend (and, yes, she is a good friend) and adopted sister, Ms. Nicola Patten, mentioned them in conversation, that I became interested. I enquired about them and she informed me (quite helpfully) that their sophomore album, “Secrets of the Witching Hour”, was available FOR FREE on the band’s website. Well, that was enough to convince me, obviously – if something’s being given away for free, then it must be good, right?

Yes, it IS right. Because it IS good. Vocalist Davey MacManus might not exactly be about to win X-Factor (or any Beauty Contests, while we’re at it) but I’d much rather listen to his honest, toothless (yes, he is missing teeth), occasionally-hard-to-decipher singing style than most of the bands out there. The band are clearly skilled musically and, all in all, it’s a sound combination – if not a little odd the very first time. They genuinely are a band that keeps calling you back for more, and The Guardian’s description of their songs as “Mini-Epics” is not far wrong.

Anyway, literally days into my discovery of The Crimea, they announced that they would be supporting the fantabulous Modest Mouse in May. “Holy shizzle!” I thought aloud, “I’m going to that gizzle!” – and I did (and, in the self-promoting style of C.S. Lewis, you can read about that here). That show was, of course, rather splendid, so I acted on impulse upon my return home and booked me some tickets to their Birmingham date – which, I might add, fell exactly 6 days later, making The Crimea the first band that I’ve ever seen twice in a week(!). However, disaster was soon to strike…

First up, my Dad (who had accompanied me to Modest Mouse and not enjoyed The Crimea – crazy foo’!) decided he was going to Wales that day. This always places a spanner in the works of my gig plans, as it not only means that I have to find alternative transport (though, I might mention, I passed my driving test at the start of July – a full month after this gig – and am currently waiting to go and pick up my new car) but also alternative company. This proved far more difficult than I had anticipated.

As far as I knew, The Bar Academy was an 18+ venue (upon closer inspection, I think that I may have been misguided in this presumption, but, anyhow), so that ruled out any of my underage friends – though, that list was no longer extensive, as most of my brethren had come of age by this point. The obvious exceptions were Print and Dan (there remain “less obvious” exceptions – basically, people I wouldn’t even bother asking but won’t name… Not that anybody from my group of friends will read this). Print had even HEARD of The Crimea, which was impressive in itself. The first person to let me down was Neil. Neil has always been a tower of gig-accompanying strength in the past – coming with me to see The Flaming Lips, The Last Town Chorus, Larrikin Love, Ben Folds, Guillemots and Gruff Rhys (and meeting all but the last with me) – so this served as a major blow (secretly, I will never be able to respect him again). I think he said that it was his mum’s birthday – he’d said the same thing the week before when I invited him to see Emmy the Great (which I consequently missed) so I have a feeling I may have been lied to. So I asked Dave, whose excuse was a little bit better, but still feeble – it was either that he was meeting someone, or plain broke. Oggelsby was the next to be asked – it was his 18th Birthday the day prior to the gig – and he actually got my hopes up (which goes to show how desperate I was by this point), only to dash them with the excuse that he would be “tired/hungover from (his) party” the night before (the party ended at 11 and Oggelsby spent most of the night running around his home, trying to stop our friends from destroying it). Basically, I had few places to turn. I could hardly ask Carolyn (who, of course, lives in the uninhabitable desert that is Belgium) and Nicola (who, I might add, The Crimea CANCELLED on – sorry Nicola…) also lives freakin’ miles away, by Reading. Yet, it would seem that I had overlooked the most dependable person I know…

Calum is not a big fan of music. Especially not modern music. It’s the hugest difference that seperates us; when we go into HMV in town, he makes a beeline for the DVDs of bad films while I head straight upstairs to the music section. I have never seen Calum listen to a CD, let alone buy one. I did not wish to impose upon him this great burden of friendship (though, if Calum even remotely liked music, he would’ve been first choice without a doubt), but had no choice. I managed to get through to him (despite his being-on-holiday) and was almost suprised to find he was rather willing (though he did try to tell me that the band was called “The Chimera” – not because he knows of a band called than [there is one], but because he did not know the word “Crimea”… It was slightly offending to incinuate that I could not pronounce the name of a mythological creature, but he agreed to come, so, meh). It was such a touching display of friendship that I was willing to overlook the ticket price and allow him to get off with simply purchasing a meal at McDonalds for me (personally, I would’ve rathered he’d given me the money – I seem to recall the meal being bad… I needed the money regardless). Anyway, that’s what all the bollocks about friends was at the start. All my other friends suck.

Oh, yeah, before I go on, because I booked this gig so late, they didn’t ship the tickets out – I had to go and collect them. Unfortunately, it was as 12 on the day that I realised the box office closed before the venue opened, so I had to race into town to get my tickets before it was too late (this caused problems as the ticket lady thought I was collecting tickets to see The Aliens who were also playing that night). The one benefit of this was that I plucked up the courage to ask for a Sparklehorse poster and was given one. Ask and you shall receive. On the bus home, I ended up sat next to a young foreign girl (who spoke stunted English to me when I sneezed… hehe, bless).

Calum was at work that day (BOO!!!) but finished early (yay!!!) and we went into town, had our crappy McDonalds, then queued. Not that there was a queue. The bouncer was a bald man with an unusual skin colour and some questionable facial hair (it looked TOO perfect – leading us to believe it was fake). We went in and sat down in the bar area (the upstairs wasn’t yet open) and it eventually filled up. Davey (of The Crimea) walked through a few times, but we didn’t speak to him. We also saw Paul Duffy (who I street-teamed Guillemots with) who is the head of The Crimea’s street-team. His arm was in a sling for some reason.

We went up and the first band, The Lines, came on after a bit. We sat at the side for their set on Calum’s request (not very rock’n'roll…). The Lines were okay, but I wasn’t particularly blown away.

They were a local band, though, and a fair percentage of the crowd seemed to be there for them. The venue was fuller for them than it probably was for The Crimea! Most of the crowd disappeared after that and did not resurface for the second support, Undercut, who I preferred (though, again, nothing mind-blowing).

In fact, during Undercut, I stood up (Calum went to the bar and lost his seat – he was not best pleased) and Calum started moaning about how everyone was looking at us (they weren’t). He started picking people out from the crowd and telling me that they were staring at him or that he recognised them. He was basically being rather paranoid. When we stood up, we did not stand anywhere near the stage, but were still the closest. Either the crowd was shy, or just not interested.

When The Crimea came on, Calum finally allowed me to more closer to the stage. The band had been hanging around the room all night anyway (the amount of times I got in Davey’s way by accident I can not remember) so it wasn’t much of an “exciting” moment, but they certainly managed to get the crowd up and dancing (everybody around me was swaying, etc. as Calum stood, stiff, arms crossed, behind me). It was a very lively show and there was room to actually “dance” (as, despite the renewed interest, few people were competetive about getting to the front). I was stood next to some youngish girls and an old, dodgy looking man (who one of the girls got off with…). The Crimea played most of their songs from their albums (I did a phone setlist, but got the bassist’s at the very end – I would’ve got Davey’s but the girl who got off with the old man grabbed it before the encore – bad gig etiquette!). They also did a French cover that I recognised which was called “Je T’aime” on the setlist – the only song I can find with those words in the title is “Et je t’aime encore” by Céline Dion. It might’ve been that, but I shall not listen to it to find out.

The setlist:

1. Loop A Loop
2. Bad Vibrations
3. Man
4. Someone’s Crying
5. Bombay Sapphire Coma
6. Several Thousand Years of Talking Nonsense
7. Don’t close your eyes on me
8. White Russian Galaxy
9. Light Brigade
10. Requiem Aeternam
11. Opposite Ends
12. Lottery Winners on Acid
—ENCORE—
13. Je Taime
14. Wierd

Some of the songs had the WRONG titles on the setlist, like “Several Thousand Years Of Talking Nonsense” which was written as “Thank your lucky stars”. I wondered why that might be…

They did all the songs that I saw them do with Modest Mouse – hardly suprising, really – and a fair mix of songs from both albums (5 from the first, 8 from the second and a cover). Calum’s refusal to dance made him rather irritable (especially with Paul, who, being rather drunk at this point, was trying to get him to dance – Calum later told me he was going to put his “other arm in a sling”, which I thought was a tad harsh, perhaps…). After the show, however, I think I cheered him up a bit by jumping on the tiny stage to steal the setlist. We didn’t hang around after (Calum’s choice, not mine) though I did have a quick chat with Paul, who tried to get me to say The Crimea were better than Guillemots (I smiled and declined) and offered me free tickets to see them the next Thursday in Wolverhampton (I was very tempted to take him up on that offer, but had had enough trouble getting someone to come with me to the Birmingham show…).

The Crimea were very good and I would like to see them again, with better supports – preferably on my own, or with Carolyn or Nicola or someone else who would enjoy them. Thanks to Calum, nonetheless.

Best Bit: Lottery Winners on Acid
Worst Bit: The week before the show, a week of uncertainty where I stood to lose the £6 I had spent on the second ticket.

Review by Alex from Last.fm, 31/07/08.

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8 Responses to “Time For News”

  1. Paul Duffy says:

    I was that drunken, plaster casted person….

  2. Paul Duffy says:

    Another ‘I’m never drinking Jager ever again moment’

  3. Hol says:

    Dusting off that part of my cranium that studied Spanish for 3.5 years when I was in junior high and high school, I pieced together that the Spanish blog was complimentary on the Crimea but it mainly is an informative piece directing people to the free download and a couple of other newspaper articles.

    Sadly, I used to be fluent in Spanish but never used it. And when I studied Russian I kept mixing the two languages up (and still do) so now I’m hopless.

  4. Sal says:

    I heard for line up change there might be talks with a certain Dan, of Danshire

  5. Christopher says:

    I thought he was from Harrisham myself. Must be mistaken…

  6. Carole says:

    Apparently Dan was in the frame, but he won’t be joining.

  7. Sam says:

    Here’s a rough translation of the Spanish blog:

    I’ve just finished reading an article about the indie genre and what it means today in comparison to what it meant in the eighties. It’s a long article but a very good one.

    It mentions a band that I wanted to write about some time ago, the Crimea. Their lyrics are genius.

    Do you know of any other band that sings about teradactiles and Rapunzel receiving kemotherapy?

    What’s more, “Secrets of the Witching Hour”,their latest work is available to download completely free. It even includes the album art to print and everything. Download it here.

    This (immortalsoon.co.uk) is a very good site about the band and (of course) it has live music.

    But do you know which song fascinates me? ‘Man’. With that verse which asks:

    “When armagedon comes,
    when time begins again,
    will you still work the earth,
    will I still be your man?”

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