I am a guy who goes to shows. When I'm at home and I blow my nose I don't use magazines, I use the sink as it saves paper. I did give some magazines and CDs (Pascal Comelade, Slumberwood, AU and Illuminati) to Flaming Lips drummer Kliph at around 4pm and I hope they read them and listen to them before despoiling them with bodily fluids!
I was a man on a mission. Mine was to win if it killed them. I was going to get into the flaming Lips gig come HELL or high water. High water will drown Manchester in the near future as predicted by the late Ian Curtis; "Maybe drowning soon, this is the start of it all."
Contact had been made! A man in the theatre behind the Academy was enjoying an early evening drink with his two friends. I'd been around The Oxford and Big Hands asking everyone if they had a spare ticket for the gig. Back at temporary home base where I'd earlier dined on very spicy sweet potato soup, my mission was accomplished. I'd found a man with a spare ticket who was happy to sell it to me for twenty slowly deflating British pounds (what it had cost him).
The touts liked my skull mask and tried to take a photo of me, but they couldn't work their camera. They told me they were asking £40 for a ticket, more reasonable than internet ebay.con rip off merchants.
Inside a support band who might as well have been called Flaming Lips Jr had just come onstage. Roadies cleared up the slippery semen so Wayne's ball didn't slip in it. Is there much point in reviewing the gig when there is probably a cameraphone bootleg up the line already? I guess my favourite songs were "Convinced of the Hex" and "Yoshimi" where I hollered way too many hoo hoos. It has to be mentioned that "The Yeah Yeah Yeah Yeah Yeah Yeah Yeah Yeah Yeah Song" is a badrillion times more powerful live than the lacklustre album rendition, and Drozd's opus "Pompeii am Gotterdamerung" was a monstrous smoky apocalyptic epic. Last came "Do You Realise?" swollen way beyond embryonic gestation. There was lots of confetti and big balloons and Wayne did one song sat upon a gorilla, which doesn't happen at that many gigs I go to, although I'd go see the Fall again if Mark E Smith rode about on an elephant like Hannibal.
The most moving part of the gig was when they played "Evil" against a looped backdrop of a trapped monkey about to be tortured, endlessly repeating the moment in time that the racing scientist, working for the god of corporate financial gain, had to decide whether to perpetrate a foul deed or not. How many obese gluttons could be saved from diabetes by feeding mice less sugar? How many pigs should be shot to find out if lead bullets really are harmful to mammals? How many times would the torturer relive the moment when he could have decided not to squirt chemicals in a primate's eye so that some dumb bimbo can safely keep her hair blonde? Just like the guards on the trains to Aushwitz, maybe he was only doing his job?
Its a shame SJM cashbuckgigs used a venue that was smaller than the one the Lips played on their two previous visits to Interzone II. This meant people who wanted to go maybe couldn't. How many names were on the guestlist but didn't turn up? How many people bought tickets but didn't make it to the gig because their kitten had a seizure or their car exploded due to the terrorist threat? How many tickets were sold on the day they went on sale to moneygrubbing net nerds whose sole intention was to swell their coughers via ebay.con?
In the aftermath I found a posh computer phone and a packet of fags. As I don't smoke I gave the fags to my friends Helen and Kev (whose fine band Last Harbour you should check out if you like Nick Cave and Tom Waits). Outside the phone began to vibrate and we soon returned it to its owner and got a fiver for our HELLp. So I guess I can effectively knock the price of my ticket down to fifteen devalued quids.