Bunch Of Fives – The Lovely Eggs | NARC. | Reliably Informed | Music and Creative Arts News for Newcastle and the North East

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Lancaster’s garage-rock duo, The Lovely Eggs have released their brand new single ‘Long Stem Carnations’ via Egg Records. The track, taken from their number one selling album ‘I am Moron’, is an interstellar slice of psychedelic garage-pop that is described by the band as ‘a funeral march for society’s outcasts and freaks’. If you want to hear it live, then get tickets to the duo’s recently rescheduled show at The Cluny, Newcastle on Thursday 25th February.

Here, the band gives us a bunch of fives regarding their favourite independent venues…

The future of a lot of independent venues is under real threat at the moment. It’s unimaginable to think that some of them might not survive this pandemic. We’ve had some of the best of times and the best of gigs at independent venues up and down the country and have been fortunate enough to become friends with many of the promoters there. On a DIY self booking level the gigging community is like a family where promoters and bands all work together to put on a great show. We can’t bear to think of these people who we’ve worked with for years losing their venues and livelihoods. If we lose venues and live music, we lose everything. It’s been very hard to single out only 5 venues in this list but here are five of our favourite independent venues in the UK.

1. The Brudenell Social Club, Leeds.
This is a legendary venue and rightly so. As a former working men’s club, it is RIGHT up our street as a venue. It’s got so much character and so many amazing bands have played there over the years. Even big bands who should really be playing much bigger venues will do a detour especially just to play the Brudenell. Nath and his team work so hard to run it and are always working on it and adding new stuff. In recent years they’ve built a second venue in the building and they have stuff like a pizza van outside. Most importantly it’s got a real community vibe and is totally unpretentious. The staff are friendly, the atmosphere is welcoming. It’s pretty much the perfect venue in every way. Always a good night at The Brude.

2. The Cluny, Newcastle.
We’ve always had a great fanbase in Newcastle and top of our list when we go there is to play The Cluny. We had to build up our audience there so we did a lot of pub gigs at first with local promoters Pop Klubb (who are lovely people btw) before we got to play The Cluny. As with the Brudenell, it’s all about the vibe and the people. That’s what really draws us to certain venues and makes them special. Joel who books for The Cluny is an absolutely top bloke and always promotes an amazing show for us. When Covid 19 meant we had to reschedule the April tour, Joel did everything to help us and when he was furloughed his boss Julian massively helped us out to reschedule the gigs. They are just a good, good bunch of people, running a great venue. Plus the crowd always bring it! They’re always up for a crack at the Cluny! 

3. The Exchange, Bristol.
We have got so much love for this place and the guy who runs it Fat Paul. They’ve had it tough recently and nearly had to close down but luckily they managed to bring the venue into community ownership and they managed to keep going. We never ever have a bad gig at The Exchange! It’s just a great venue with a sweaty mosh pit! They have a great sense of humour there too. I remember there was a period where we had quite a few (usually older men) coming to stand at the front with their arms folded and they wouldn’t move at all. Just stand there watching with their arms folded like they wanted to be entertained. Well when we arrived for the show the staff at The Exchange had printed off posters which they stuck around the venue saying “No Arm Folders!” They’re good for a laugh like that and the crowd are always up for it. Plus Paul knows how to knock up a mean veggie chilli!

4. Gorilla, Manchester.
We’ve sold out Gorilla the last 3 times we’ve played there and it’s a big old place.We always have a good show there and something off the wall always happens. The Manchester Eggs massive is totally bonkers and we totally love them for it! We work with a promoter called Chris Horkan who puts on gigs under Hey! Manchester and he always puts on great shows for us and works really hard on promoting. We started off playing some great smaller Manchester venues with him like Soup Kitchen, then we went onto Deaf Institute, then Gorilla and we’ve got a gig coming up next year with him at the O2 Ritz. It’s nice progressing with a promoter like that. We sold out our April 2020 Gorilla gig about 6 months in advance but still haven’t got round to actually playing it yet! It’s been rescheduled to February 2021 and when it happens it’s gunna be off the scale!! We just love the venue. The stage is just the right size and height, we love the old control panels at the back which were taken from the BBC when it moved from Oxford Road, the dressing rooms are great, you can watch the supports from behind the stage and it’s got amazing food. Some of the best we’ve had. Just a great venue that we’ve had a lot of joy at.

5. The Lexington, London.
We’ve always had a soft spot in our hearts for The Lex. I think it was one of the first venues in London that we managed to sell out (which at the time was a really big deal for us.) And for a venue with THAT amount of stairs for us to carry all our gear to and from our van, this must be an exceptional venue to make the top 5! And it is. Playing at The Lex reminds us a lot of the early days of working with one of our favourite UK promoters, Tobi Blackman, who promotes under the Dictionary Pudding moniker. Like us, back then Tobi was doing things very much from a DIY perspective, with very little industry experience. But with sheer hard work and determination he’s become one of the best promoters in the country. He’s put on some amazing bands and ended up becoming the main booker for The Fall.  He just works so hard on each show. He put us on quite a few times at The Lex in the early days and those shows were just joyous. Our first soundman was the in-house engineer there so we always felt comfortable from the start being there, cos he was at home and knew the desk inside out. It also has a great stage and is great for the crowd cos you get a great view of the stage wherever you stand. The staff are mega friendly and Delia who does all the in-house booking is a dream. I remember when we toured after we’d had our baby she let us use her office as a dressing room because the band dressing room was off stage and covered in cock and balls. It’s just the little touches of kindness like that that you don’t forget.

We’ve really got to fight hard to make sure these venues and hundreds of others like them don’t go under. If we lose live music, we lose life. So please take a minute to support independent venues and sign the petition for the government to support them until they (and we) can get back on our feet.  https://saveourvenues.co.uk/#/

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