3.5.07

The Only Ones


The Only Ones
Originally uploaded by fred pipes.

One of the biggest regrets of my life was leaving The Only Ones' last ever gig at the Lyceum before the encores to run for a train home to Guildford. Now 26 years later, when I heard they were reforming to play at All Tomorrow's Parties at Butlin's Minehead, I just had to get there. Luckily there was a space in Nick Hider's chalet and as ATP had been described as a Glastonbury for ageing punks I decided to give it a go (at my age!). I needn't have worried, Minehead was a pleasant place, with a steam railway (the subject of another blog entry in case your eyes are beginning to glaze over!), and Butlin's, tho it had seen better days (where was the monorail?), a great venue. The Only Ones were the very first band on, at 7pm on the Friday, and consequently we could get right to the front leaning on the crash barrier. There were rumours that Peter Perrett could only do a couple of songs before having to lie down, so we were apprehensive. As it happened they came on half an hour late (Peter had to be woken up!) and did a full hour's set, with all the favourites, including the 'Vodaphone song' that all the kids recognised as penultimate. John Perry's guitar work was spectacular (check out his blog) and the whole experience brought tears to the eyes. All I remember was the ones they didn't do, like 'Someone who cares' and there was one song I didn't recognise, but I never thought this would ever happen - first the Bonzos reforming, then The Jam (almost) now The Only Ones touring... everything else must be a bonus. We listened to The Dirty Three over fish and chips, then into the rest of the festival. Best of the rest? Joanna Newsom and the bloke who wrote the soundtrack to Amelie, Yann Tiersen - the way it was laid out in three venues made it easy to tick off bands, speed gigging! Review in the Indy. Tips: the only bar to serve proper beer is The Sun and Moon (try the Exmoor Gold) - they also do cashback - all the other venues only sell Tetleys or Carling , ie piss or piss. My only gripe! Oh, and Nick's team won another weekend away in the pop quiz! More later...

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