Lily Allen Live at The Tabernacle, Notting Hill, London

Lily Allen at The Tabernacle in Notting Hill
Lily Allen at The Tabernacle in Notting Hill

Lily Allen – MySpace Secret Gig Live at The Tabernacle, Notting Hill, London – Monday 11th May 2009

Last night Lily Allen played a secret London gig to a few hundred lucky people.

The venue was kept secret until yesterday afternoon when free tickets were given away on a first-come first-serve basis to fans who queued at a meeting point in Portobello Road after the information had been posted on Lily Allen’s MySpace page.

The Tabernacle had a 400 capacity and was a fitting stage for Lily Allen who made her first stage appearance there as a child.

Fans were asked to turn up in fancy dress depicting a London tube station.  Lily Allen played the gig dressed as Queen Victoria, before returning for an encore dressed in vest top and jeans.

Other fancy dress included angels (Angel), Sherlock Holmes (Baker Street) and a Green Park, though my personal favourite was a guy wearing the head of a chicken, wearing a sash with the name of a popular lager.  Any ideas what London tube station he came as?

Lily Allen played a mix of songs from both albums for about one hour.  The sound was good and the band were very tight.  For the encore Lily Allen sang a deep dub-sounding version of Smile – which to the delight of the audience included a drum n bass rework in place of a middle eight, and a powerful rendition of her latest single The Fear before ending the show on a spectacular high with a great cover version of Britney Spears Womanizer.

It was great to see Lily Allen in such a small venue.  She was relaxed and spoke to the audience between songs.  After a few of which, she told the press photographers to fuck off to make more room for the squashed fans at the front of the stage, pouring glasses of wine through the gig, which she shared with her fans.  A great performance, very professional and very initimate.

Lily Allen Live at The Tabernacle 11th May 2009 Set List:

Everyone’s At It
I Could Say
Never Gonna Happen
Oh My God
Everything’s Just Wonderful
Who’d Have Known
Back to the Start
He Wasn’t There
Littlest Things
Not Fair Leading
Fuck You
The Fear

FAC 501 Tony Wilson – a tribute

You can listen again to the FAC 501 – Tony Wilson Tribute by going to and choosing Listen Again.

TV presenter, critic and one time music journalist, Paul Morley looks back at Tony Wilson’s career with Granada Television and Factory Records.

The show is a 2 hour speech only version of the radio show that was originally broadcast on 30 December.

FAC 501 – Tony Wilson Tribute features an exclusive interview with Tony Wilson, recorded by Newsnight just months before he died, as well as interviews with his friends, including Peter Saville, Richard Madeley and Judy Finnigan; and band members of Joy Division/ New Order and A Certain Ratio, among others.

This is a very well produced tribute to a legendary indivdual, to whom so much of the music from Manchester that followed The Sex Pistols and Punk Rock was indebted too.

Tony Wilson died of cancer on 10 August 2007.  He was just 57.

Manchester versus Cancer

Andy Rourke (Smiths), Peter Hook (New Order) and Badly Drawn Boy joined forces for the finale of last nights Manchester versus Cancer gig. Finally putting an end to rumours of on stage collaborations with Ian Brown and Liam Gallagher.

The supergroup played The Smiths, Please, Please, Please let me get what I want, Joy Divisions Love will tear us apart, Instant Karma and Let the sunshine in from the musical Hair.

 The Farm dedicated their biggest hit All Together Now to Factory Records mogul Tony Wilson, who died last year from cancer.

Other highlights were Happy Mondays, The View, The Fratellis and The Enemy.

For anyone desperate enough here is a clip from The Fratellis, Chelsea Dagger. Its not great quality.

Radiohead play Ceremony by New Order

Thom Yorke - RadioheadWhen I was in a band we would often learn and play favourite songs in rehearsal, mainly for fun and in most cases, never to play live in front of an audience. I have often wondered what songs famous groups would learn in a similar vane.

Radiohead have been one of favourite groups since the early 1990’s, and New order since the conception in 1980. It was therefore with some excitement that I stumbled across a little gem of a video on You Tube yesterday, Radiohead in a rehearsal room playing New Order’s debut single, Ceremony.

Ceremony was written by Joy Division, along with In A Lonely Place (b-side of the New Order debut single) and rough rehearsals can be heard on the Joy Division Heart and Soul box set, but was made famouse when the Joy Division became New Order.

You Tube is full of gems like this one, so I would be interested to hear from anyone who knows of other famous bands who have been caught on film playing songs that don’t appear in their live set.

Ian Curtis – the film: Control

Control - film about ian curtisControl is the new film about the late Ian Curtis (1956-1980), lead singer of the band Joy Division. The screenplay is based on the book Touching From a Distance, by his wife, Deborah Curtis who is also a co-producer of the film.

The film is directed by Anton Corbijn who directed and photographed Joy Division, and explores the troubled and short life of the lead singer of Manchester post-punk band Joy Division, and follows the ups and downs of their meteoric rise to fame between 1977 and 1980, when Curtis committed suicide on the eve of the band’s first tour of America.

As Joy Division found success and adulation, Ian Curtis’s life was in turmoil with the breakdown of his marriage, a extra marital affair with a Belgian fan and his being diagnosed as an epileptic.

The film premiered at the Cannes Film Festival, on 17 May 2007 (the day before the anniversary of Curtis’ suicide), where it was received well by the critics, especially for Sam Riley‘s performance.

His wife Debbie Curtis shyed away from publicity until the release of her book stating she wanted to protect Ian’s daughter, Natalie, who was only one when Curtis hung himself at the tender age of 23. Natalie Curtis was also involved with the film at various stages and though she said it shows her father’s flaws, she cannot fault the music.

Yesterday the film received its London Premier and is on general release from 5 October.