Gig Review: MAZ O’CONNOR @ The Green Note Cafe, Camden – 04/10/2015

Maz O'Connor 1 Having caught Maz O’Connor’s performance at a fundraiser, Mark K made sure to catch her gig at the Camden Green Note; here’s what he made of it…


I’d been impressed by Maz O’Connor when she played a short set at the Body & Soul Fundraiser in July, and had made a mental note to find out more about her work. So when I discovered she was playing a venue as intimate as the Green Note, well, I had to be there!

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Al Devey’s Secret Gig Picks – Nov-Dec 15

Our pal Alan Devey keeps telling us of the up and coming bands he’s been to see – so we asked him to put his mouth where his money is and share his insider dealings! Alan Devey
So here’s Al’s heads up on those hidden gems he’s been discovering and is planning on seeing in the months to come. Check them out…

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Gig Review: On Blackheath Festival, Blackheath – 12/09/2015

CA - On Blackheath logo Saturday’s line-up at September’s ON BLACKHEATH FESTIVAL – now in its second year – held particular appeal for Mark K. Here’s what he made of it…

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Gig Review: OUGHT @ Shoreditch Village Underground – 01/09/2015

CA - Ought Some bands are just good. And some bands make people who don’t make moves make moves (not to mention bad puns). Have a guess which Ought are – or just read Mark K’s review of their gig at Shoreditch’s Village Underground…

Ought are gracing the Village Underground with their presence in order to promote their second album Sun Coming Down. Support comes from Shopping, who are a three-piece with a singing drummer. They entertain us with angular post-punk strongly reminiscent of the Gang Of Four. It’s good enough, but not sufficient to make me rush to one of those old-fashioned record shops to see whether they have anything on release.

However, by contrast, having heard some tracks from Ought’s debut album for Constellation Records More Than Any Other Day, I’m quite keen to hear what the material from their new opus is like. I ought (pardon the pun) to explain that Ought’s music is essentially post-punk math rock. It’s complex, tight, tuneful and punchy. It’s quite 1978, but it’s also very ‘now’ too, and live it goes down very well. They’re reminiscent of Television at times, but with a twist. Television Plus if you like. The singer is, in his delivery, very clearly influenced by Mark E Smith, which is by no means a bad thing. CA - Ought - More Than Any Other Day

They use controlled feedback as if it’s been weaponised. Tim Darcy counts out “1,2,3 kill it!” and they explode into opening song Pleasant Heart. Dear reader, I head-banged. That just doesn’t happen.

CA - Ought - Sun Coming Down In terms of today’s music Ought are bordering on the outre. Has what they’re doing been done before? It has to an extent, but there’s a mix of genres going on here. This isn’t slavish regurgitation of a particular musical style.
Tonight’s set is split fairly evenly between Ought’s two albums, and you really can’t see the join. That’s not to say that they haven’t progressed. I would say that from hearing the new material live, with their second album they’ve consolidated what they did on their first. So, similar but sharper. They have plenty of time to worry about progression.

This is still the beginning of their musical journey, and if you haven’t heard them then you really ought.

Mark Kelly



Gig Review: VICTORIOUS FESTIVAL, Southsea Sea Front – 30/08/2015 (Day Two)

CA - Victorious Festival 2015 The mere mention of Ray Davies was enough to get Mark K to part with fifty quid for a Victorious Festival ticket for both days. Day one was a blinder – how about day two and the star attraction that got him to stump up the cash in the first place? Read on and find out…

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Gig Review: VICTORIOUS FESTIVAL, Southsea Sea Front – 29/08/2015 – Day One

CA - Victorious Festival 2015 It may have been a late announcement to Mark K but the mere mention of Ray Davies was enough to get him along to the Victorious Festival two-dayer without delay – here are the delights he experienced on day one…

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Gig Review: THE BERRIES & FLOWERPOT @ The Dublin Castle 21/08/15

CA - Dublin Castle logo Tunde’s first visit to Camden gig / music mainstay The Dublin Castle brought a pair of all-girl trios very much to her attention…

The Dublin Castle is one of Camden’s old school gig venues, and frequented by a mix of suited professionals and the mainstay rock crowd. There were four bands tonight but it was the ladies who stood out for me. Read the rest of this entry »

Gig Review: BEAUTIFUL DAYS Charity Fundraiser @ St Ives House – 24/07/2015

LE - Jul - Beautiful Late Nights One of our CARABAS SPECIAL RECOMMEND‘s BEAUTIFUL LATE NIGHTS was the work of ALISON GRAY of the London Indie Music Meetup, a great night of bands at St Ives House, Clerkenwell and a charity fundraiser for a great cause. Mark K got along to sample the delights…

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Gig Review: THIRD LUNG @ The Black Heart Camden – 10/07/2015

CA - Third Lung (Twitter) Not that Tunde found the night lacking in great music, but up and coming Reading band Third Lung made such an impact that her review became all about them: showcasing captivating stage presence and strange time signatures, you don’t want to miss a chance to see them if you get it…

Third Lung (then recently signed) were onstage second of five at this authentic rock bar and music venue, tucked behind a bank and concealed from the bustle of Camden Town. Read the rest of this entry »

Gig Review: BRITISH SEA POWER @ The Chalk Farm Roundhouse – 13/06/2015

CA - Sep - British Sea Power Having caught them live back in 03, Mark K went to catch them along with Bo Ningen for an evening of art rock and rock as art. The question seems less ‘was it any good’ so much as ‘in which way was it excellent’…
Read on and find out…


I must confess that it came as something of a shock to realise that British Sea Power’s debut album The Decline of British Sea Power was now sufficiently venerable to be afforded the full heritage treatment: i.e to be played in full in front of an adoring, appreciative, and above all, nostalgic audience. I had seen BSP touring the album as support to The Flaming Lips in 2003, and this aforementioned realisation made me feel, well… old. Still, before the nostalgia commenced we had Bo Ningen to give our senses a damn good shaking. Read the rest of this entry »

FIELD DAY – Victoria Park, Hackney – 7th June 2015

CPP - Field Day

Mark K opted for Field Day’s Sunday line-up and it’s guitar-based greatness – and a damn fine time he had! Read on for the many highs and a couple of lows of “London’s premier indie festival”… 


Since its inception in 2007, the Field Day has become London’s premier indie festival. This year, for the first time, the two days have been loosely themed. Saturday has more of an electro-cum-dance theme, whereas Sunday is broadly dedicated to guitar bands. Having never been too much of an electro-head, I opt to attend on the Sunday.

CPP - Field Day aerial banner

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CAMDEN ROCKS! (Various Camden Venues) – 30th May 2015

LE - Camden Rocks 30th May! Running now for 6 years, this was Mark K’s first time at Camden Rocks. A day of rock / metal / indie of some 11 bands from a menu of musical awesomeness with drinks in pubs across Camden. Maybe there are some days to beat such a proposition – but they’d have to try pretty damn hard…
(Twitter links of the highs at the bottom)

Camden Rocks has been in existence as a festival for six years, although this is the first year that I have graced it with my presence. It is essentially a rockier and more metallic version of the now defunct Camden Crawl. Well, I thought: what’s not to like??? Read the rest of this entry »

Gig Review: THE SMYTHS @ The Good Ship Kilburn – 24/05/2015

CP - The Smyths 1 Mark K’s been a tad skeptical of tribute bands but word of the Smyths had reached his ears and with positive noises; so, when he heard they were playing at The (becoming a somewhat legendary venue) Good Ship Kilburn he took the plunge and went to check them out. 
Here’s what he had to say…


I must confess that I’ve always viewed tribute bands with a degree of wariness. On the one hand I’ve had a sneaking suspicion that they’re too damn lazy to write their own material, and on the other hand been convinced that they will inevitably be disappointing.

However, having seen the odd tribute band at festivals and been pleasantly surprised, plus having had The Smyths enthusiastically recommended to me, and moreover having missed The Smiths themselves back in the day (an act of foolishness for which I offer no excuses), I decided to take a chance. Read the rest of this entry »

Event Profile: S.W.A.L.C. Microarts Festival

On Facebook
On Twitter: @swalc1
On YouTube
‘Writers, Artists, Film Makers, Live Music, Independent Films, An Award Winning Pub, Beer, Fine Wines & Sausage Rolls. What’s not to love?’


See also our profile with links on to writer and organiser of S.W.A.L.C. Si Spurrier here.

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A Pint with… Penny for the Workhouse!

Having seen Penny For The Workhouse live a couple of times, and each time having been knocked out by their material and their performance, I thought it would be worthwhile meeting them and trying to find out what makes them tick, and where their intriguing songs come from.


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Al Devey’s Secret Gig Picks – July 15+

Our pal Alan Devey keeps telling us of the up and coming bands he’s been to see – so we asked him to put his mouth where his money is and share his insider dealings! Alan Devey
So here’s Al’s heads up on those hidden gems he’s been discovering and is planning on seeing in the months to come. Check them out…

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