Dream Show: Bohemian Machines | NARC. | Reliably Informed | Music and Creative Arts News for Newcastle and the North East

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Photo by David Burn

Seventies New York Indietronica inspired dance catalysts, Bohemian Machines release their fuzzed up debut single, Social Skills. This no-nonsense, new wave offering is a personal monologue about the flaws of friendship, human beings, and our reliance on others, and was created with a focus on uncomplicated production and just nailing the rhythm, words, sounds and melody (the important stuff).

Since gigs aren’t really a thing at the moment we asked the singer, David Burn, if they’d create their own fantasy gig with no limitations…

When I think about what my dream show would look like, I’m torn between a tiny intimate gig in the Head of Steam basement, and a huge field on a sunny day. I think the smell of grass, fresh air and the glow of a nice sunrise would probably clinch it so I will go for the latter: We’re talking Glastonbury Other Stage, the show starts at midday and the field is full of smiling people being pleasant to each other. The smell of Ambre Solaire is floating in the air as the bassy thud of the burger van’s music can be heard as anticipation builds across a semi-drunken crowd (I’ve thought about this far too much haven’t I?!)

First on stage would be a local musician, Allan Symons. Allan was my first ever real musical inspiration and introduced me to so many amazing artists like Bowie, Stone Roses, Crowded House and more bizarrely, Soft Cell. He would write these amazing songs that made me want to start. Whenever I see him or hear him play it takes me back to those years. That would be a perfect way to start the show.

Second up would be The B-52’s. Such an underrated band who are unfortunately known to most for Love Shack. They’re a bona fide hit machine though, and Roam is one of my favourite pop songs of all time. Kate Pierson and Cindy Wilson’s vocals are up there with the greatest. I recently watched a live show of theirs at Capitol Theatre in 1980 and it’s just a glorious, rhythmic mess. 

A perfect follow up to that would have to be Talking Heads. David Byrne walking on stage with his acoustic and little ghetto blaster to play Psycho Killer. Imagine seeing that for the first time back in the early 80s?! I have listened intensely to them of late, which maybe shows (just a bit) but Byrne’s vocal styles particularly have really inspired me to play with vocal delivery methods. Seeing it in person would just be incredible. 

Next up would be Springsteen. I must admit to being late to the party with him, having only really paid him real attention over the last few years. His storytelling and ability to paint the listener a vivid picture is unbelievable. He would be perfect for that slot where everyone is slightly tipsy and wants to just listen and hug each other. 

Bowie and The Rolling Stones would follow. I would have loved to have seen both of these live in their pomp. Bowie would blast through Rise and Fall, and Scary Monsters. Screaming Like a Baby has become my ultimate Bowie track these days. I still listen to it about 20 times a week. 

The Beatles HAVE to be on any dream show, surely. I don’t think I need to say anything else about their inclusion.

As the day falls into darkness, the show would finish with a massive Chemical Brothers and Daft Punk set, joined by every musician they’ve worked with. Nile Rodgers, Pharrell and Paul Williams would all be there to keep it going until the early hours. 

Then it would be a tent, drinks with friends around a campfire and an uncomfortable night in a hot tent before the hangover commences in the morning!

PS This is really hard. I’ve just looked through this and would have loved to have included other artists such as The Ronettes, Elton John, Funkadelic, New Order and maybe some old 90s bands like Supergrass to really remind me of my youth. Can I make it a dream festival instead of a show?!”

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