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    That first image on Prefixmag's site is hilarious - Colin looks like Victor Meldrew !! Less I Don't Understand, more I Don't Believe It !! (Apologies to non-UK TV viewing members of the forum, Victor Meldrew was a crotchety old moaner from a BBC sitcom called One Foot In The Grave, whose catchphrase was "I don't believe it !"). The photos are very good though, very professional. It's gas how there's no need to organise photographers these days, as the audience (& journos etc.) will take 'em for you ! And kindly post 'em on the net ! It's sufficient to turn up to play and all the digital cameras will flock in like homing beacons dowsing for heat...
    I really want them to come to Argentina. But that's not going to happen for sure
    "Colin looks like Victor Meldrew !!"


    One Five Four In The Grave!
    Wire's Leuven show gets reviewed by John Doran in the July issue of The Wire (surprised no-one's flagged this already):

    "Wire are bone dry. “Come on !” yells one overexcited, over refreshed punter. You’ve waited 30 years, you can wait another 30 seconds” deadpans Colin Newman before they open with “Circumspect”, which rolls along metronomically on Robert Gotobed’s metal-puncturing snare snaps and Graham Lewis’s fluid bass. Since their split in 2004, they have parted ways with founding member Bruce Gilbert and recruited Margaret Fiedler McGinnis (Laika/Moonshake) on guitar. The group sound energised by the presence of McGinnis, far more assured than they appeared at the angry and brief ‘farewell’ set they played at the Roskilde Festival in 2004.

    “Circumspect”, like “One Of Us” and “Mekon Headman” – which contain the proto-shoegaze rich guitar work of “Map Ref.” With the heavy pop sensibility of “Eardrum Buzz” – are taken from their new album Object 47, which sees Newman applying the kind of intense attention to minute changes in the layers of guitar tones that woud make Ricardo Villalobos bristle with envy. Showing how user-friendly the group has become, the crowd get thrown an unexpected sop in the form of “Being Sucked In Again” from 1978’s Chairs Missing, featuring rusty toothed lumber-saw guitar fragments which cut straight through the fug in the Belgian venue (which still allows smoking). Wire are as fiercely intelligent as ever, applying the sentiments of TS Eliot’s The Hollow Men to the restrictiveness of the songwriting process during the self-referential thrash pop of “Comet”, with Newman intoning balefully: “And the chorus goes, ‘Blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. Bang !’ And then the whimper.”

    The encore proves, if anything, that Wire are best when avoiding any connection with their 1977 heritage; the only dip is an arthritic “12XU”, whose pantomime cockney punk vocals make it sound like Chas & Dave played at 45rpm with the vocals tone-locked down to 33."

    Chas & Dave ?? And the chorus goes: Rabbit rabbit rabbit... ;-)
    Found this clip of "Drill" as performed live on the Tonight Show (guest ?) hosted by emmmm, Suzanne Sommers. The band are great, SS is simply inept. Worth a look.
    American chat-show effusiveness meets quiet English reserve... a comedy of manners. Bruce's remarks are priceless. I wonder where yer wan is now...
    I'm liking the way Pink Flag is played on this current tour. Still reduced to one chord, but a more concise version this time around, with a reinstated drum roll ending from Robert. Good to see Colin throwing some shapes here too!
    Also found this excellent live renedition of one of my favourite moments from "Chairs Missing", namely "Being Sucked In Again", live in Rome, May 6th '08...............
    Here's one for London Wire fans - where do you reckon they'll play (when they finally announce a date)? i've been racking my brains to think of somewhere, but cannae think of the 'ideal venue'! i hope it's not Hammersmith, RFH will require a week's worth of gigs, any Academy ain't 'quite right' (& the sound ain't the best - certainly in Brixton) & O2 is too big (Indigo2 is too small). So i've come to the conlusion that it'll be the RAH!

    whaddya reckon?
    If there's any plans for gigs out of London, The De La Warr Pavilion in Bexhill would be nice, suitably arty and modernist, and a nice venue.
    & just round the corner from yerself AMN!??!?!
    Frankly, I think Wire should play either the Hexagon (Reading) or Anvil (Basingstoke). Clearly, this has nothing to do with the fact I live 15 miles from Reading and 12 from Basingstoke. Oh no. Not at all.
    Hammersmith or Shepherds Bush would be grand...only 6 tube stops away.

    ...or Wire could play 'The Bridge Hotel' in Greenford...or my front room!
    Following on from what Tim said, there's Boiling Boy from the same gig here

    With that great melody, throbbing bass, and that guitar riff it's easy to over-look just how metronomic Robert is on this. Watch him and listen. He's in my top ten drummer list easy!

    Enjoyable PF here...
    Sled Island …

    Missed the Friday night show due to travel plan complications. I’m going to assume that the band was completely off and disinterested that night, and that I missed nothing. Let nothing dissuade me of that notion—I have enough regret.

    Saturday evening on the main stage. A surprisingly low turnout—no more than two thousand people by my estimation. Which is especially disappointing because of a tight fifty-odd minute set from the band. I’d never seen them live. The wife and I had plans on going to San Francisco to see them in 2000, but we bought a house instead and that tied up the cash. After 2004 or so, it appeared that I’d missed my only chance to catch them live, so I wasn’t going to pass up this second chance. In a word, I was impressed. Two more words: blown away. They were every bit as good as I could have hoped in my twenty-plus years of being a Wire junkie. Loud and tight, getting down to business and avoiding the rock n roll clichés of posturing and faux buddying up with the audience (a few dry jokes, but that was it). Four skilled individuals with a job to do and showing how to do it exceptionally well.

    A few observations … RG is the least r n r-like drummer I’ve ever seen. He’s beyond all business. With his eyes closed (at least they looked closed to me) and contained movements, he was more like a shaman in a trance. … GL is one cool looking bastard, with a touch of the old punk bicycle chain twirling menace about him. Of the four, he most naturally drew attention to his presence. … CN’s demeanour is a reminder that, despite the no nonsense way the band goes about its business, it’s still about enjoying making/hearing the noise. His head bobs and general bouncing around were great and he was in fine voice (tho at times it seemed a bit too low in the mix). … MFMcG was equally impressive, stepping into BG’s role very well indeed, both in terms of music and as an unassuming presence. In that respect—avoiding attention—she was most like RG. It should also be noted that while the three men were toweling off every couple songs (the band had to deal with a bastard of a setting sun hitting them in the face), she never seemed to break a sweat. A damn cool lady who can dress in black, make a guitar scream, and never sweat. She even seemed to smile and laugh a few times.

    Now, I have to admit that I haven’t been especially taken by the new post-BG material (both R&B3 and O47), but the live versions worked really well, sounding more like the Send era. Taken as a whole, this show, covering bits from all periods of and styles from the band’s history, demonstrated that, indeed, one group was responsible for all those varied songs. I doubt that someone unfamiliar with the different periods of Wire could determine which clusters of songs were written at different times. They all sounded like they belonged together. Which makes the current live set both a great introduction to the band as well as a summary of all periods in its history. What more could anyone ask for? (Besides a thirty-minute version of Drill, of course.)

    If there are going to more North American dates in the fall or winter, or ’09, I think I’m going to have to start saving for airfare …
    Dr Medulla,

    Thanks for providing good account of Saturday's show. I happened to find out about Friday night's "secret" show very much at the last minute. Admitedly, it was a poorly kept secret but like the good Dr., my travel plans were almost set in stone so it still felt like a major coup to make it to the secret gig. What an embarrassment of riches...I've been a Wire fan for 21 of my 37 years and I also thought I would never get to see the band, then twice in two nights and they did not disappoint. DrM, I wish I could say that the Friday night was but a mere shadow of Saturday night's show...the band took the stage at 1 AM, two encores and almost two hours later we emerged, a sweaty-exhausted-exhilarated-satisfied mass of people keenly awaiting Saturday's show.

    The last couple of days are a haze in my mind so I can only provide general comments on Friday's gig...first impressions?

    it was immensely gratifying to see sooooo many hyper-excited "young folks" at the show. kids who are really passionate about the band and know the songs and are not merely there because they figured they should be there to be cool. I had some brilliant conversations with kids younger than my fandom :)

    the band sounded great. my three favourite bands at this festival are Wire, Yo La Tengo, and Mogwai. they share an astonishing ability to glide effortlessly from moments of sheer sonic beauty to moments of cacophonous, ear splitting sheets of white noise. the most amazing thing about Wire is that I love each and every single one of their incarnations. with each reinvention, they tap into a different facet of music that makes life worth living. Send's brutality was re-invigorating. The controlled slow burn of R&B03 and the new material I heard at these shows suggests that the new direction will be equally compelling. It shall be a great one.

    Margaret has integrated into the Wire juggernaut seamlessly. She was a great foil to Colin in laying down thick cascades of gauzy guitar. Colin providing shards of guitar with Robert and Graham propelling the music forward with catharsis-inducing rhythms. Yet another successful incarnation of the band.

    I became a Wire fan in spite of the fact that my first album was TIC. I say "in spite of" because I was a kid thirsty for angry rebellion and the "electropop" of TIC was sure disconcerting at the time. the re-releases of the first three albums would not be for another three years and I would not be exposed to the brilliance of the early period until then. I had no context for integrating TIC into my understanding of Wire. Nevertheless, the ample rewards to come could not have been predicted by my first encounter with Wire. the gossamer of Madman's Honey was, at the time, infuriating. Silly kid. In any case, I know that the middle phase of Wire can sometimes be the forgotten middle child. however, like the forgotten middle child that grows up to become a person of importance, I would love to see this period of the band's art being paid more attention to (especially in the live context). their rendition of The Boiling Boy was absolutely brilliant and breath-taking. I would die a happy man if I ever heard a live version of Follow The Locust, or Free Falling Divisions, or A Serious of Snakes, or Torch It (or, or, or...). I think with their current sonic incarnation the band could really shape and mutate the middle period sounds which I adore so much into something equally compelling.

    you know that old axiom, "never meet your idols"? bollocks...the band was gracious and generous beyond belief. I wanted to see if I could get the band to sign a poster. Robert came out of the VIP area and into the main grounds to watch Mogwai's set. I approached him and he soon disappeared behind the VIP gates to track the other members of the band. this poster is now among my most prized possessions.

    Dr. Medulla, the band will be back in North America in October. they are likely to play Vancouver, Toronto, Montreal. how about a road trip ?
    <<I wish I could say that the Friday night was but a mere shadow of Saturday night's show...the band took the stage at 1 AM, two encores and almost two hours later we emerged, a sweaty-exhausted-exhilarated-satisfied mass of people keenly awaiting Saturday's show.>>

    Oof. Alas and alack. I choose to believe that you're hallucinating …

    <<you know that old axiom, "never meet your idols"? bollocks...the band was gracious and generous beyond belief. I wanted to see if I could get the band to sign a poster. Robert came out of the VIP area and into the main grounds to watch Mogwai's set. I approached him and he soon disappeared behind the VIP gates to track the other members of the band. this poster is now among my most prized possessions.>>

    Great, now I regret leaving after Wire's set. Never been a Mogwai fan, so we decided to cut out and find some real food after a day in the sun. Still, I'm glad that the band were all so decent to you in person.

    Yeah, Toronto (or Chicago) might be doable for me, depending on airfare at that time.
    Hi all,

    I will 2nd Steven's vote for Music Hall of Williamsburg on the Brooklyn, NY leg of the October Tour :o)

    -another the Paul
    I don't suppose Wire will repeat the mad folly of coming to Australia again???? I hope the last visit a couple of years ago was good fun for the boys although I don't think the schedule gave much time for sightseeing. Pity! Wire are pretty obscure in the mainstream in Oz so crowds were, I suspect, not sufficient in the three gigs (I went to all of them) to turn any profit. I think my best shot is a Wire visit to Japan- I've got enough frequent flyer points I might just make a 'day trip' to Tokyo.... Phillip (from Australia)
    YOWZA! London date at last!! see y'all at The Scala - still might go to Ghent mind!