God help us all! The Herts/Essex not in That London thread

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God help us all! The Herts/Essex not in That London thread

Post by linus » Mon Jan 21, 2008 15:16

I'm guessing this is just me... but I live in hope

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Post by Contravene » Mon Jan 21, 2008 15:28

My brother lives in Essex, its kind of nice out there.

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Post by darvé » Wed Jan 23, 2008 12:21

Looks like its just you Andy.. i just wanted to say that one of my good friends has the unfortunate distinction of being from Canvey Island.

He's moving to Vancouver next week, i think this says a lot.


I like Southend, they have good minigolf.

linus

Post by linus » Wed Jan 23, 2008 14:22

Southend is a whole other world, I'm over in the boggy Essex marshlands, the armpit of the county that connects to the parts of Hertfordshire which have all the London overspill, places with a Parish Council, a Women's Institute, Seasonal Flower Festivals at the local church, an endless supply of Golf Clubs and carveries and a boozer full of old lags reminiscing about Post Offices they have robbed, bird they have served and whether you might be interested in a suitcase full of moody Armani jeans for a monkey

it's a cartoony kind of a place, caricatures abound, toothy Tory lady councillors with enormous helmets of hair rub shoulders with cheeky chockney chankers in camelhair coats with fat fingers glistening with soverign rings and blinging chunky bracelets upon their wrists

but enough of that whimsical arsery...

The Harlow Square One club had it's moments back in the eighties/late nineties (when Ant from Collapsed Lung used to book gigs) but it's all emo's now barely able to stand upright worn down by the weight of having this brilliant little venue to look fed up in and around

Before that The Creation came from not many miles from where I'm sat now... there should be a monument adorned with mods

Hertford gave the world the first Marine Girls gig, The McTells band/Bi-Joopiter label, a Beat happening gig and a Heavenly/Lois gig and The James Dean Driving Experience came from Hoddesdon (near where Steve Marriott died) but otherwise it's all Page 3 girls, Eastenders actors and Tottenham and Arsenal players

oh, and Welwyn Garden City gave the world The Jazz Butcher, I think, and The Astronauts

I've considered putting on gigs or a clubnight but where? None of my friends would come, there all married with children (or moved away to be married with children elsewhere) and never liked my sort of music anyway and I've no clue as to whether anyone would be remotely interested in an indie pop/medway beat/anything else that tickles my fancy night except me

there is a local bands scene but, fuck me, they are all into Babyshambles, The Arctic Monkeys and The 'Chilli Peppers (I know this as they put it on the flyers) and sound like a mundane dilution of all three... we have our very own Marquee club in Hertford where most of these types play, fighting for stage time amongst a revolving circuit of tribute bands and the likes of Eddie Tenpole Tudor on the pay for a new conservatory trail (I'm being unfair, Sportique played three years ago... or maybe four... so if you wait long enough...)

perhaps I should move?

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Post by humblebee » Wed Jan 23, 2008 14:33

There's just nothing at all to do in those Home Counties towns is there? It's that London effect, sucking everything in; anyone wanting anything gets on the train to the city. That night they had in Harlow seems a glorious exception (I still do a double-take every time I look at that Heavenly tour poster from 19whenever and it says Harlow). This is partly why I always have such a bad time in St Albans - fighting through the crowds packing into the Horn of Plenty to pay 12 quid to watch an 80s cover band, in between snorting lines in the bogs. Eep. Give me an eviscerated former pit village where you can't tell the men apart from their dogs any time.

linus

Post by linus » Wed Jan 23, 2008 14:40

foolishly me and my then girlfriend decided to stay in bed one summer saturday rather than play in a baseball match between heavenly and the mctells... that was during that tour

I always feel a bit of a nerk for that, I was at that heavenly gig, they were supported by lois maffeo

I also saw them at the camden underworld on the same tour (calvin got up onstage and performed 'c is the heavenly option') and then at the hertford pioneer hall (an actual church hall) with lois again, the bartlebees and the mctells

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Post by humblebee » Wed Jan 23, 2008 14:44

linus wrote:foolishly me and my then girlfriend decided to stay in bed one summer saturday rather than play in a baseball match between heavenly and the mctells... that was during that tour

I always feel a bit of a nerk for that, I was at that heavenly gig, they were supported by lois maffeo

I also saw them at the camden underworld on the same tour (calvin got up onstage and performed 'c is the heavenly option') and then at the hertford pioneer hall (an actual church hall) with lois again, the bartlebees and the mctells
Ah... I saw Heavenly and Lois at the Jug of Ale in Birmingham on that tour. It was a great night. Although my Icelandic friend Binny spent most of it promising Amelia he'd get them loads of gigs in Reykjavik.

linus

Post by linus » Wed Jan 23, 2008 14:50

and presumably that wing of the tour never came to pass?

linus

Post by linus » Wed Jan 23, 2008 15:00

I lived in St Albans for a year... odd place... never quite figured it out, the Horn Of Plenty then was still very much a biker's pub and they'd have a lot of Metal bands playing

I was surrounded by Metallers, they were all on a Modelmaking course... as in Special Effects modelling, there was a Chinese lad from Sheffield (perhaps you know him?), Death Metal Dave from Wigan, Other Dave from Lincoln, quite a lot of people from Lincoln, actually and Richard Wolfe who was from Somerset and who's uncle was one or other of Foster and Allen, the first night we met him he drank a bottle of Jack Daniels and ended up speaking Japanese, not that any of us spoke Japanese, but with a West Country accent

where did Metallers get them massive white trainers from back then? they were high tops and really puffy... there should be a campaign for the return of real Metallers, soft as lace great big hairy sods with skin tight black denims, enormous trainers, sweatbands and none of them had beards!!!

I'm rambling again...

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Post by humblebee » Wed Jan 23, 2008 15:13

linus wrote:and presumably that wing of the tour never came to pass?
Sadly not. At the end of the night it was back to the old Jericho Tavern/Adelphi Club treadmill for the Heavenly gang.

In 1995 I came scarily close to moving to Hatfield. Praise be, that this gruesome prospect never came to pass.

linus

Post by linus » Wed Jan 23, 2008 15:18

oh my god, that doesn't even bear thinking about...

stop right there, pete, I didn't want to hear anymore, it's too disturbing

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Post by darvé » Wed Jan 23, 2008 15:49

Andy, you've somehow managed to make Essex somewhat quaint and, dare i say it, nice, and this is coming from someone born and raised in Kent.

Everything you've said about wanting something that matters in the place you live could so easily have been written about Gravesend.. and we didnt have the Harlow Sq. During the height of Britpop the function room of my local (the 3 Daws) got booked out every 3-4 weeks for 'the evening session' a slowly deteriorating indie club night that went from being the defining social event of the calender to a chav ridden hell hole in the space of 18 months. I went to every one of them except the last one (i was at a Speedy gig in Tonbridge Wells if memory serves correct) where all the windows got smashed, the door got kicked in and, by all accounts, the place was just overrun with kids looking to cause trouble. I sometimes think about trying to put a night on down there, but am faced with the same problems and lack of belief that people in provincial towns actually want an alternative.

Once the indie night stopped we moved on to a metal/rock pub in the middle of an industrial estate in Northfleet, The Red Lion, Bad Manners played there once, alongside Gravesend's finest pub bands. Grim days, i think the youth of today still frequent the red. The Daws went over 21 soon after the trashing and has never looked back since.

i too seem to be rambling..

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Post by gofelt » Wed Jan 23, 2008 20:47

linus wrote:foolishly me and my then girlfriend decided to stay in bed one summer saturday rather than play in a baseball match between heavenly and the mctells... that was during that tour

I always feel a bit of a nerk for that, I was at that heavenly gig, they were supported by lois maffeo

I also saw them at the camden underworld on the same tour (calvin got up onstage and performed 'c is the heavenly option') and then at the hertford pioneer hall (an actual church hall) with lois again, the bartlebees and the mctells
Heavenly, Lois, Mctells! and the Bartlebees!!! on the same bill?! whoah! I wish I had been to this gig. I've never lived in Essex but I would happily have traded Athens for Essex in early/mid '90s...

Andy, weren't the Bartlebees brilliant? Germany produced some fantastic indiepop bands in '90s, them, the Legendary Bang, Red Letter Day, Die fünf freud. They deserved more popularity but they remained obscure in the realm of indiepop music, with the exception of the Bartlebees.

Sorry for rambling on a bit. Carry on with Essex. Despite its downsides, Essex area has Epping Forest which is beautiful. Oh !and Essex girls and lads :-)
I slice the surface here beside you/Lungs filled liquid yell I love you/Sound moves further underwater
Deep and dark my submarine bells groan in greens and grey/Mine would chime a thousand times/To make you feel okay..

linus

Post by linus » Wed Jan 23, 2008 21:07

the bartlebees were indeed splendid

I wish I'd made more of an effort back then

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Re: God help us all! The Herts/Essex not in That London thread

Post by Tomb » Sun Apr 13, 2008 14:31

Can I add Bedfordshire to this thread. We are moving there in August. Anyone else here in that county?

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Re: God help us all! The Herts/Essex not in That London thread

Post by Martijn » Wed Jul 30, 2008 20:39

We met some lovely people at Indietracks who run a monthly club night in Chelmsford. Fact.

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Re: God help us all! The Herts/Essex not in That London thread

Post by Hunk Of Spam » Sat Dec 27, 2008 21:26

I live at the arse end of the central line in Essex, which would be ideal but the lack of bloody night buses.

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Re: God help us all! The Herts/Essex not in That London thread

Post by Uncle Ants » Mon Dec 29, 2008 13:15

I grew up in Stevenage - it was mostly shit.

The cycle tracks were good

... but as a teenager in the 80s regarding gigs and bands and whatnot it was just that bit too far by train to be able to afford to go into London, but too close to London for anyone to come and play there or any of the nearby towns - so it was basically a musical wasteland. We survived on going to see bad pub gigs by bad pub rock bands in bad pubs - it was thin gruel. I doubt things have changed much.
In Recordeo Speramus

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Re: God help us all! The Herts/Essex not in That London thread

Post by Tomb » Mon Dec 29, 2008 13:43

Uncle Ants wrote:I grew up in Stevenage - it was mostly shit. We survived on going to see bad pub gigs by bad pub rock bands in bad pubs - it was thin gruel. I doubt things have changed much.
We have recently movd to Biggleswade. I can confirm that bad pub rock bands in bad pubs is alive and kicking here. Only the other week the wonderfully named Cheesy and The Helmets played. I like the way the local paper gives rock star status to all these covers bands who play these horrible pubs. I am tempted to join the liberal club which seems to host shows by punk rock covers bands!

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Re: God help us all! The Herts/Essex not in That London thread

Post by Uncle Ants » Mon Dec 29, 2008 15:28

Tomb wrote:Only the other week the wonderfully named Cheesy and The Helmets played.
It must be an ongoing franchise ... I'm sure I saw them playing in The Engine Tavern in Baldock some time in 1984.
In Recordeo Speramus

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