Saturday, June 28, 2008


My Bloody Valentine play Manchester Apollo tonight as their comeback tour continues. I'm not there tonight but I did see them as part of the Rollercoaster tour at Brixton Academy in 1992.

At the time this created quite a stir: The Jesus and Mary Chain, My Bloody Valentine and Dinosaur Jr, three of the loudest bands around at that time, plus young upstarts Blur sharing a bill on equal footing. And the running order of the bands would be drawn each night. Well that's what they said. When Jesus and Mary Chain came on last and a huge lighting rig descended no-one was in doubt about who was headlining. JAMC and Dinosaur Jr can be pretty terrifyingly LOUD at the best of times. But MBV was something else.

I seem to remember the band emerged from four plastic pods - just like in Spinal Tap. I might have this wrong, memory has failed me many times before. But what I have no doubt about was the noise. Now this wasn't just loud. I watched MBV from the very back of the Academy under the overhang from the first floor. And my diaphragm was vibrating painfully. All my internal organs were being shaken up by the waves of sound hitting me. And I was at the back.

This seems to be borne out by reports of their recent London gigs with ear-protectors given out on the way in (here and here). The mystique of MBV is about more than noise but if you are going tonight, I'd advise body protection as well as ear protection.

My Bloody Valentine
Glider EP [BUY]

The Jesus and Mary Chain
Barbed Wire Kisses [BUY]
Dinosaur Jr.
Fossils [BUY]

Also tonight The Fall plus John Cooper Clarke and Bobby Peru at Manchester Academy. Spoilt for choice! Tickets here.


farmer-bri said...

You're not wrong about the noise... MBV were mesmerically awesome.

Anonymous said...

Yup, I was at the back upper and I have never heard sound like it, it was like standing a the back of a jet plane with psychadelia coming out of it, I was vibrating and it went on for a good ten mins or so from my old fading memory, I beleive they were on last too that night, my memory is not what it was probably due to the sound waves!