Tag Archive: Ultravox


I always say our defining years of music appreciation occur when we are aged 15-18, and although you like music from times beforehand, and afterwards, those four years are your era. And in the winter of 1980 to 81, two bands were at the top of my hit list: Ultravox and Visage. Both including Midge Ure.

Now, nearly 40 years later, Midge took to the road again with The 1980 Tour. So, how could I resist? Yes, I’ve seen Ultravox six times over the years but the chance to hear the Vienna album in full and selected Visage tracks was a temptation too good to miss. Plus, there was a surprise when I arrived. At first I groaned when hearing someone say the support was just a DJ, but then onto the stage Rusty Egan walked and took us on a marvelous trip back in time and … well, I’m sure he’d bluetoothed my phone as he seemed to be selecting everything on my teenage era playlist. A marvelous opener, with Rusty then joining Midge for the first segment of the headline slot playing drums on the Visage numbers after an opener of Yellow Pearl.

And what Visage numbers we had: Visage, The Dancer and of course, Fade to Grey, just to name a few. Then Rusty departed and we had the Vienna album, all nine tracks in order. Always a classic album with not a single weak spot: New Europeans, Passing Strangers, Private Lives … hell, I could just list it in its entirety. At the end of All Stood Still, Midge and co departed, but we knew they were coming back, and we had classics such as Hymn and If I Was.

So, maybe 40 years later, Midge can’t reach every high note he used to, but he got most of them. And each number was delivered powerfully with a great sound from Midge and the band. Therefore, an excellent show, not only for the long-term fan, but anybody else there. Good rock, electro music. I have to say, though, I didn’t think the voice synth on Mr. X worked but can appreciate the desire to make it different to the original Warren Cann vocals.

Sometimes you reach a certain age and nostalgia is all you have left. Not the case personally but it’s always fun to reminisce. Therefore, all in all, a great night. So, thanks Midge, and thanks Rusty, for both of you taking me back 40 years and making me 17 again.

Cheers.

Antony N Britt

Happy Halloween.

Boo!

It’s Halloween this week, or as paedophiles call it – Christmas. Halloween is a night in the past when Evil Ex-Wife saying “I’m going to get dressed up,” took on a whole new meaning. I have to admit, I never got the fuss about Halloween, though back in the days of Myspace, I did get loads of Halloween greetings come October 31. Don’t know why. Maybe I simply had more than your average count of witches and worshippers of Satan amongst my friends in the cyber-world.

And now, thinking of witches, I was suddenly struck by a thought …

Whatever happened to Gothic Girl?

You may remember my disastrous trips to a local chip shop where Gothic Girl used to serve/poison me. I’ve only been there twice in the past six months and on both occasions, she wasn’t there. The first occasion could be explained. It was early May – Beltane. She’d most likely be celebrating but once again when I visited in the summer, she was absent.

Oh no. What if she was rumbled as a witch? I’d best go and check the local ponds. If I see a stool with a young woman head down in the water while strapped to a chair, I’ll know for certain.

I need to see her. I want to know if she has a cure for grey hair in one of those potions of hers.

On the subject of grey hair …

It was my birthday the other day. Yes, I’m now forty-nine. One away from a major milestone or as some would call it – two-thirds of the way through life. Still, I shouldn’t complain. I don’t think I do too bad for my age and maybe I should be grateful about how I look. You see, my hair is still mostly brown and more important – there. I have, however, noticed over the last year that it is taking slightly longer to grow at the same time more ends up stuck to the bath. The thatch is not as thick and more noticeably, receding at the temples. This I can get away with as the wild abandon style I adopt, covers that up. Even so, I noticed when looking in the mirror just now, more white hairs than I’m used to. Arrgghhh! Therefore, I spent about ten minutes pulling each white hair I could see. That was until I pulled one then looked and saw it was still there. Double Arrggghhh! You have white hairs, then go and pull out a good one by mistake. Not only that, it was around the thinning area I spoke of earlier. Oh no. I’ll soon look like Doctor Who did when the Master zapped him, ageing him to over 100.

Calm, calm, calmer. Deep breaths – and relax.

Ahhh … the ageing process. Isn’t it wonderful.

I remember birthdays when I was a child. You’d be up at the crack of dawn and then relish every magic moment. It meant so much back then but only in reality because you got lots of presents. As the years passed and you grew older, the special nature seemed to disappear a little bit every year until you reach where I am now and couldn’t give a toss. God, I’m a miserable bastard sometimes. These days I think birthdays just turn into something you are obligated to do, and that’s not because nobody threw me an 18th, 21st or even 40th birthday party, either. But at least when you are young, birthdays are supposed to be something to look forward to. Then you reach 30 and for some reason, it’s dreaded in a way like your life is almost over. Then you get to 40 and that seems even worse. Why? I didn’t feel any different to when I was 18.

So now, I’m one off the 50. Blimey, life is now going to feel like the holiday which seems to go much quicker once you reach the second half of the week. But at least at 50, I still have 20-30 years left, so it’s nothing to worry about. Or is it?

Hang on a minute … I remember 30 years ago as if it were yesterday. For example, I still think of Ultravox as a contemporary pop group. What do you mean, who the fucking hell are Ultravox? They’re a sort of contemporary group … from about 30 contemporary years ago.

There they are, still touring. But hang on. Even they look ancient now.

But, I digress. Another 15 years on top of 50 and I’m drawing a pension. This is when I’m supposed to do all the things I want to do, but am unfortunately too old and knackered to do so. Look, I hate bloody gardening, so don’t even suggest it. And after 65, you have a few years of all that, ‘I never know how I had time to go to work,’ crap. Then 70 arrives. Oh. – My – God! By then I’ll have rediscovered religion before it’s too late and just be praying, ‘Please God, for pity’s sake, give me another ten and I’ll be good. I’ll go to church, I won’t swear … often. Just leave me for a little bit longer, just so I can have my allotted time. Okay? Thanks.’

80 arrives. Shit, bugger, balls and blast! Now what am I going to do? Should I sell my soul to the Devil? No I flogged that years ago for a cheap thrill with a girl in the cake shop. Just give me a couple more years. PLEASE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

So I carry on going and just about make it to 85 then realise what the term, borrowed time, means. 90 plus and it’s a case of ‘Look, I’m not being greedy, but I’d really like to make it to a hundred. I never managed to get one in cricket, so this would be adequate compensation. I think you’d agree. I wont get into trouble. I’ll try not to piss myself, dribble over people or even molest that nice nurse who looks after me (Look, she sat on my hand. Okay?). I won’t even ask for a telegram from the Queen (I never send her one, anyway). Just let me go about my business quietly and I won’t go bothering anybody. Honest, honest, hon… Croak!!!!!!!!!

Only Joking … I’m still here.

What do you mean … unfortunately? Hah!

Anyway, I’m off to prepare for Halloween and look for Gothic Girl. See … I’m all dressed up and ready.

Cheers.

Nick

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