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  1. Phyllis Triggs on And the Pope said to his aide…Go »

    Got my first ‘HMHB songs revisited’ email today (thanks for sorting that out Chris), duly followed the links to the Vatican Broadside where I find people discussing Frank Turner. This is a bit of a lime sky spooky pills coincidence as yesterday through the mate of a mate I thought I might have got a ticket to see Mr Turner (he’s playing a charity fundraiser tonight at our townhall) however, it all fell through. I’m not really familiar with his stuff, just heard a few of his songs on 6music and like what I’ve heard. Had no idea he covers Vatican Broadside – if he plays that tonight I’ll be well pissed off I missed it!

    Tosser he may be, but given his career choice, I’m prepared to give him the benefit of the doubt – at least he hasn’t donned red braces and joined his chums in the city. So, he’s taken advantage of the privileges offered him, and it is more than likely that the self-confidence and air of entitlement bred in such institutions have helped him on his way, but is it also possible that music has worked its magic by offering him an alternative to that toxic environment in much the same way it has stopped others from taking smack and robbing cars?

    21 January 2018

  2. Phyllis Triggs on More HMHB in the MediaGo »

    Nice one, TFOK. It completely passed me by – but then, I’m not much of a pedant. Well played!

    21 January 2018

  3. the duke of westminster on And the Pope said to his aide…Go »

    The high is the harmony on about the third round of “ho Fucking Hell Are Slipknot” that over-enthusiastically turns into a falsetto like someone belting out “When She Comes” far too seriously in response to others who were being merely ironic when singing She’ll Be Coming Round the Mountain When She Comes”

    21 January 2018

  4. Brumbiscuit on And the Pope said to his aide…Go »

    I spose it shows similar disdain for the likes of plastic bands, like Slipknot, Kiss and their ilk. Now, Plastic Bertrand, there was a real punk icon…

    21 January 2018

  5. transit full of keith on More HMHB in the MediaGo »

    As a grammar wanker, I just want to place on record that I was aware of the comic potential of “annoy less pedants” when I wrote it. Also, I stole it from that Richard Osman off Pointless.

    Les Pedants were an art-school trio from Toulouse, did a Peel session in 1987 I think.

    21 January 2018

  6. hendrix-tattoo on And the Pope said to his aide…Go »

    Vatican as CtSO already said works surprisingly well out of Song to the Siren.
    Which is when I first heard it. Would love the band to play STTS at any future concerts.
    I also agree with Post 13 that Sandinista’s side 1 is a masterpiece Something about England is my favourite Clash song….

    21 January 2018

  7. GIpton teenager on More HMHB in the MediaGo »

    I thought it was an amazing example of bad auto correct and should have read ‘Les Pedants’, the notoriously fastidious French cyclist.

    21 January 2018

  8. Mark on And the Pope said to his aide…Go »

    Great song which shows particularly apt level of respect to god’s infallible representatives on earth and the pope.

    21 January 2018

  9. Phyllis Triggs on More HMHB in the MediaGo »

    I love Blackwelly but it has more limited use than the ‘esque’ or ‘ellian’ forms. No doubt some grammar wanker could tell us why. And I reckon Harbinger Of Nothing deserves the Order Of The Black Welly for that “to annoy fewer pedants” comment – superb!

    21 January 2018

  10. floreat ultonia on Pre-Gig ChatGo »

    Sorry for your loss Bobby (saw this after posting flippantly re Bilston)

    21 January 2018

  11. floreat ultonia on In return for my Sally James scrapbookGo »

    Afternoon Bobby- Ma Pardoe’s aka Old Swan is my local. Are you coming to Bilston for old times’ sake?

    21 January 2018

  12. alan on More HMHB in the MediaGo »

    It’s a Sad Day in the Park – there is no Golden Biscuit award. (600) (549) (548)

    I was greeted with awkward silence
    Chris The Site Owner had lied to me
    He had lied to me on his post

    21 January 2018

  13. Brumbiscuit on And the Pope said to his aide…Go »

    ‘…in relation to me getting out of bed?’
    Can this be suggesting a Father Ted-esque attitude towards their flock of the upper echelons of the Catholic church?

    21 January 2018

  14. GIpton teenager on More HMHB in the MediaGo »

    Anyone for Blackwelllike?

    21 January 2018

  15. The harbinger of nothing on The hand-clapping sequence at the end of BlockbustersGo »

    Oh, Carol.

    21 January 2018

  16. The harbinger of nothing on The hand-clapping sequence at the end of BlockbustersGo »

    I mean Blockbusters. Obviously.

    21 January 2018

  17. The harbinger of nothing on The hand-clapping sequence at the end of BlockbustersGo »

    What on Earth has Kip Keino got to do with Countdown, anyway?

    21 January 2018

  18. The harbinger of nothing on More HMHB in the MediaGo »

    I’d go for Blackwelly.

    20 January 2018

  19. The harbinger of nothing on More HMHB in the MediaGo »

    I think you mean “to annoy fewer pedants”…

    (You tee ’em up, Keith – CtSO)

    20 January 2018

  20. transit full of keith on More HMHB in the MediaGo »

    Surely nobody on here would be picky enough to argue the difference …?

    I’ll go with Blackwellish. My new year’s resolution is to annoy less pedants.

    20 January 2018

  21. gipton teenager on More HMHB in the MediaGo »

    Blackwellian or Blackwellesque?

    20 January 2018

  22. transit full of keith on More HMHB in the MediaGo »

    Just noticed that David Gaffney (Manchester-based writer of very short stories) tips a hat to HMHB with the title of one of the stories in his Sawn-Off Tales, ‘Some Call It Loungecore’. (Lots of Fall references too). I really recommend his stuff (Sawn-Off Tales and Aromabingo particularly) – he writes very concise, funny, surreal and dark stories, quite Blackwellian in some ways.

    20 January 2018

  23. EXXO on More HMHB in the MediaGo »

    Talking of demographics, on this week’s 6Music ‘Round Table’, someone called Justin from an outfit called The Vaccines dropped possibly the most inappropriate, ill-informed and downright erroneous HMHB name-check of all time. Here it is.

    20 January 2018

  24. EXXO on More HMHB in the MediaGo »

    They mostly have their own very distinct demographics don’t they though: Adderley, Blackwell, Dean, Dimbleby, Jackson, Routledge, Ward, Warrior, Welsby, Stubbs, Jackson), for which reason I’m always a touch sceptical when I hear it whispered (at half-time near the kop end of the Johnny King stand) that only a prime-time phone-in vote-out with them all locked in a house baking cakes on ice can ever sort this one out once and for all. I’m fairly sure, however, that one of them has been to about ten times more games than the rest put together.

    20 January 2018

  25. Chris The Siteowner on More HMHB in the MediaGo »

    “…Tranmere Rovers’ second-most famous fan…”

    20 January 2018

  26. Phyllis Triggs on The difference between us and all the other bands…Go »

    Cheers, Niall. Of course you can post it on the FB page – I’d be honoured! And many many thanks for the text of the extended outro – somehow it seems even more impressive seeing it written down, I get the feeling it could just run forever!

    19 January 2018

  27. hendrix-tattoo on The difference between us and all the other bands…Go »

    Loved the review Lou, Glad you had a good time….

    19 January 2018

  28. Irish Niall on The difference between us and all the other bands…Go »

    Ah PT that’s brilliant. Thanks very much. Would you mind if I reposted that on the HAHB fb site?
    By way of thanks here’s the full text of the extended outro of the Len Ganley/God Gave Us Life hybrid medley. Just a bit of fun to add an element of opera or stage musical to proceedings where numbers are reprised at the end. I know we’re taking a bit of licence with such things -and that singing a barre of Whipping Boys ‘When We Were Young’ has an element of Elvis sings Nirvana to it but hopefully it adds a bit of fun to it. Meanwhile we’ve to nail down the next one here at home. Mark will be spending some time in Belfast so he might be able to do a bit more groundwork there for us.
    Limerick in late Spring can be very nice and I’m sure we’d be welcome in Cork too though their gig calender fills up quickly.
    I mentioned Dundalk as well at the show. Not quite as handy for city dwellers here in Ireland (though on the motorway) and a slightly longer spin on the bus from the airport for nutters crossing water for us -but still only 45 minutes from Dublin airport.
    I nearly forgot the promised GGUL outro ( I only sung half it on the night I’d say.)
    C
    G
    All of our songs sound the
    C G
    same. You’re the reason why paradise
    C G
    lost. I’m keeping two chevrons
    C G
    apart. On top of Lord Herefords
    C G
    Knob. Some place like Bradford or
    C G
    Leeds. Because I’m a
    C G
    Trog. They love to see a dog on the
    C G
    pitch. Now I go and Pick the wife up
    C G
    There’s an Albert Hammond bootleg in the
    C G
    house. What would they
    C G
    know? Piss Cream candy Shoes
    C G
    We got a bad review, he’s On the Roids, Sus
    C G
    -pected Murderer of 2pac murder suspect
    C G
    Murdered The poor bastard driving the
    C G
    Train. The bloke who sets up the
    C G
    PA. The wrong grave for 23
    C G
    years
    C G
    Depressed beyond Tablets Deep House minbus appeal
    C G
    And still she wont give me a smile
    C G
    Monmore hares running
    C G
    Me and my girl seal clubbing. When the
    C G
    evening sun goes down
    C G
    I hate Nerys Hughes
    C G
    I left my
    C G
    heart in Papworth General. As
    C G
    told to a boil on a cab drivers neck. As
    C G
    told to a boil on a cab drivers neck. As
    C G
    told to a boil on a cab drivers neck. As
    C G
    told to a boil on a cab drivers neck
    C G

    19 January 2018

  29. Phyllis Triggs on The difference between us and all the other bands…Go »

    Half Arsed Half Biscuit at the Bello Bar Dublin – first gig of the year for me and what a grand way to kick off 2018!

    Certainly, I was ready for a gig – one of the managers at work has been pissing me off more than usual these past few weeks and now – as if any more proof were needed to justify my negative opinions – I’ve discovered that she says ‘lacksadaisical’. Currently awaiting an opportunity to ask if she’s ever been to Copenhagen…

    Meanwhile, back to Ireland –

    Tucked away below stairs,The Bello Bar is a small, cosy venue. Whilst settling in to wait for the serving of the Guinness (there is something of the ritual about this in Dublin) I take in my surroundings and begin to wonder if I’m in the right place. Candle-lit tables and a bearded folk-singer cast a mellow mood and provide an unlikely setting for any Trumpton rioting. Doubts disappear however, as soon as I spot the ultimate signifier: behind the guitarist, modestly displayed, is a pair of Joy Division Oven Gloves.

    As more people drift in the audience begins to take on a distinct identity. Exxo turns up – nice to see a familiar face – and I feel quite at home among HMHB t-shirts and impressively, several Dukla Prague shirts. The guy playing guitar has launched into some rock, cranking up the energy. Beckoning a couple of acquaintances from the crowd, he introduces them as ‘the two Ciarans’ and together they thrash out a gratifyingly raucous, unrehearsed version of Nick Cave’s ‘Mercy Seat’. Wow! Didn’t expect to hear that this evening!

    Turns out that tonight’s support act is actually the new guitarist with Half Arsed Half Biscuit. Niall Quinn, lead singer and main man behind the Irish Biscuit project, points out how this shows real dedication to the cause – mirroring the recent change to the line up of HMHB. Didn’t catch the guitarist’s name but I was soooo impressed he could go straight from Mercy Seat to Dickie Davis Eyes – Respect!

    The band were set up to play adjacent to a snug called The Sitting Room hence the performance taking place on a hearth rug amid a couple of standard lamps with pink shades (somewhat incongruous next to Niall’s orange amp – a most impressive piece of kit and thing of beauty in its own right – I certainly wouldn’t mind one of those taking up space in my sitting room!) As there is no stage, the audience down the front share floor space with the band. While this makes for an intimate gig it leaves little room for dancing/moshing without risking injury to yourself, the band or the equipment. Sitting on a stool behind a table just a couple of feet in front of the drummer while the band belted out danceable HMHB classics felt very strange. For Exxo such confinement proved intolerable and at several points throughout the performance he sprang into action risking simultaneously both his head and the low-hanging lights/speakers which threatened it. Despite the lack of space Niall encouraged more people to come forward and by the last few songs enthusiastic if restrained dancing had claimed what space there was.

    If anyone in the audience was feeling a bit half-arsed about this gig it certainly didn’t show. I would hazard that most people there were familiar with at least some of the songs as there was plenty of singing along, and when Niall announced ‘Chatteris’ a lady to my right exclaimed ‘Ooh, I like this one!’. Fred Titmus provoked the appropriate responses and this small audience really did itself proud when came the song in Gwatkin. Particularly good to hear this one in a live environment – it’s been a while.

    This was a lovely relaxed gig. In communicating with the audience Niall demonstrated the easygoing affable eloquence for which his fellow countrymen are famed; both he, and the band seemed completely at home, taking it all in their stride. At one point Niall had to stop play as the drummer had struck up with the wrong song. At another there was a bit of a conflab as to what came next, the guitarist got involved ‘..it’s a bit blue-grassy…weird chords and a bendy C..’ – turns out that one was Restless Legs! During Teenage Bride Niall sung the wrong verse but caught himself, kept going, and in true Ref’s Alphabet style talked himself back round to sing the right one. He apologised for the slight delay between songs caused by the band having to bend over to peer at the set list on the floor, ‘It must look like we’re engaging in some sort of weird Japanese-type bowing ritual after each song…’

    Bowing rituals aside, Niall had come up with a very neat way of paying tribute – I can’t remember how they wove it in because they didn’t sing Lord Hereford’s Knob but they did an extended version of the ‘All of our songs sound the same’ section from that song. As well as Two Chevrons and Paradise Lost they referenced a whole load of other songs (damn! I wish I could remember which ones!) thus acknowledging the extent and quality of the HMHB back catalogue – afterall there’s only so much you can fit into a couple of hours!

    So, how did it compare to an HMHB gig? HAHB are not a copycat band. Niall’s not trying to be Nigel Blackwell. The evening was more about coming together to celebrate a shared appreciation of a great band and great songs. Niall’s delivery demonstrated a deep empathy with the lyrics but he brought something different to them aswell, something of Niall. That extra dimension made it well worth the effort of getting my arse over to Dublin for this gig.

    Much as I’d love to see HAHB cross the water I can’t help feeling this is a bit of a selfish demand as we’re already pretty well-catered for by the real thing (apart from on their home turf that is – how about a Liverpool gig Niall? I’m sure you’d have no problem shifting tickets for that one!) In the meantime please continue with your mission. In bringing the songs of HMHB to the Irish you’re doing fine work for the worthiest of causes!

    19 January 2018

  30. Peter Mcornithologist on The difference between us and all the other bands…Go »

    love to see 2 of you fellows on bargain hunt with Nigel and my aunt Nancy as the 2 experts

    19 January 2018

  31. Irish Niall on The difference between us and all the other bands…Go »

    Hi again folks, I was on my fb this morning and that ‘see more memories’ thing popped up and upon having a gander into my jan 19th related past I noticed that the aforementioned January Drabs is a FREE DOWNLOAD from bandcamp. So fire away.
    https://themetuneboy.bandcamp.com/album/january-drabs

    19 January 2018

  32. BOBBY SVARC on In return for my Sally James scrapbookGo »

    A cellar hopping friend once took me to a beermat auction at Ma Pardoes near Dudley circa 1982. Definitely a queer lot them CAMRA types, it all got out of hand when a beermat made near to three figures, £7.50 if my memory serves me correctly, a decent price back then. A quick but brutal fight then took place in the rear snug bar when the said beermat was deemed to be a Sexton Blake.

    19 January 2018

  33. The harbinger of nothing on In return for my Sally James scrapbookGo »

    As a former CAMRA Man myself, I’ve always been slightly disappointed in this song, because I feel like it ought to take the piss out of me and most of my mates – but none of us have any of the attributes listed in the song. Perhaps I’m a bit too young, but then again I don’t recognise these traits in any of the older CAMRA folk I know either. They must either be a specific subset or a dying breed, I guess.

    If it referenced having an interest in old public transport, ticking (as in visiting – for example, every Wetherspoons or train line in the country) and modern prog rock… That would be a few of them covered!

    Not me though. I’m none of the above, including the lyrics. As if to prove the point, I just made a rare flick from 6 Music to Planet Rock, and Alice Cooper happened to play some Cheap Trick live at the Budokan, which I hadn’t heard before. Not my cuppa tea.

    18 January 2018

  34. The harbinger of nothing on More HMHB in the MediaGo »

    I’d say that Mozzer (q.v.) also played a part in Grasmere being famous.

    18 January 2018

  35. GIpton teenager on The difference between us and all the other bands…Go »

    I bow to your superior knowledge Nigel. I only got an O level in Eng. Lit. back when (insert cliché here). Could I play out on Saturday d’ya fink? Incidentally, did you see the Brudnell on TV last night? Obviously the exterior is not photogenic enough.

    18 January 2018

  36. EXXO on The difference between us and all the other bands…Go »

    Ah you see Tony I would reserve that one for ‘pertaining to’ or ‘typical of”, rather than the -esque which suggests ‘in the style of’ or possibly ‘influenced by’. I’d say this is a particularly significant distinction when it concerns an original song by a modest man who from time to time curates exhibitions of yer actual Crossley & Blackwell songs.

    Sorry I missed you last weekend at the Brudenell. Went there as soon as I got back on Sunday even though I’d had 1 hour sleep in 48, and it was most excellent, though for me personally that was as much due to the quality and outcome of football on the telly as to great camaraderie and the most excellent ales. Will be there Saturday night for the tribute gig to our mate who I was telling you about – several old Woodhouse Wanderers – Stu, Davy Curry, Ricky Mariner, Rich Park etc should be there.

    18 January 2018

  37. dr desperate on Pre-Gig ChatGo »

    Parish news: Darwenians at a loose end tomorrow night (Fri 19.1.18) might consider popping along to Sunbird Records’ excellent music venue/pizza hall, where Andy Marsh (of Andy and Celia fame)’s band The Benefit Cheats will be unveiling material from their new album ‘Darwenism’. We must do launch some time.

    18 January 2018

  38. dr desperate on More HMHB in the MediaGo »

    ” ‘Go Long’ is also very funny. Not in a Barron Knights way, but more Half Man Half Biscuit.”
    Jonathan Roscoe describing Canadian folkie Scott Cook’s fifth album in ‘Shire Folk’ (not to be confused with the late lamented Manc fanzine ‘Shy Talk’).

    18 January 2018

  39. dr desperate on More HMHB in the MediaGo »

    Nice. Shame she didn’t mention the weekly rates in early September though.

    18 January 2018

  40. gipton teenager on The difference between us and all the other bands…Go »

    @Exxo- I’d have to go with ‘Blackwellian’, rather than ‘Blackwellesque’.

    18 January 2018

  41. Chris The Siteowner on More HMHB in the MediaGo »

    If it’s good enough for Wordsworth or Blackwell…

    18 January 2018

  42. Irish Niall on The difference between us and all the other bands…Go »

    Thanks for the kind words about the show (about which there is a very nice review here: https://thecorribnotes.blogspot.ie/) and about January Drabs (which seems like such a long time ago now and which I sometimes wish I’d recorded properly) which I share on the third january of every year sometimes with a reminder that the days are already more than half an hour longer than they were on winter solstice.

    Especially thanks for the kind words about Dolores. It can be said with even more certainty than usual that an absolutely leaden pall hangs over this wee town right now. People are really struggling to take it in. For truth and accuracy sake – I haven’t spoken to Dolores in well over two decades and wouldn’t have gotten to know her beyond pleasantries, idle chat and we did a bit of busking a couple of times. I’ve been asked to do a bit of press today and I’ve been squirming as people commiserate with me like we were BFFs. We just moved in different circles -and besides she’s lived in Canada or somewhere for most of her career. But christ that’s hard. Her youngest is the same age as my eldest.

    16 January 2018

  43. Phyllis Triggs on The difference between us and all the other bands…Go »

    Hi Nigel,

    Nah, after a leisurely morning and a huge breakfast, time was running short so I jibbed the Guinness gimmickry in order to explore some of the more cultural aspects, namely a look around tall ship – The Jeannie Johnston – a replica of one of the actual ships that carried emigrants to America to escape the potato famine, and then a visit to the GPO 1916 Easter Rising experience – I think I made the right choices, both were captivating. Can thoroughly recommend.

    January Drabs is brilliant! Ta for that. Certainly brightened this drab January eve.

    Regarding Half Malone Half Biscuit – hadn’t even considered stretching that fa a a a ar! Ok, I wasn’t paying attention to the verse structure and it doesn’t fit in terms of syllables but I think it sings ok if you start off with the stress on the ‘is’, stretch out the ‘yond’, and then hammer out the syllables of ‘comp-a-ri-son’, or is that too torturous like the way some hymns are? ‘Hospitality’ works best in an Ian Paisley stylee tho obviously that would be completely wrong…

    16 January 2018

  44. hendrix-tattoo on More HMHB in the MediaGo »

    Love the photees of Ron in N.Y. John.
    Hope you and Elizabeth had a good un’….

    16 January 2018

  45. dr desperate on More HMHB in the MediaGo »

    If you’re into the whole Facebook thing, my attention has been drawn to a new HMHB page, apparently there for the past month or two. Some of those here are already all over it like a cheap suit; I’ve only just seen it.
    https://www.facebook.com/search/top/?q=the%20half%20man%20half%20biscuit(hmhb)%20appreciation%20society

    16 January 2018

  46. hendrix-tattoo on The difference between us and all the other bands…Go »

    Dirk Hofman Motorhomes.

    16 January 2018

  47. EXXO on The difference between us and all the other bands…Go »

    Hi Lou,

    Did you swallow all the Guinness marketing blarney on Sunday then? As for your version of ‘Half Malone Half Biscuit’, well ‘Played live’ is simple but brilliant – same meter as just ‘alive’ – why didn’t I think of that? No ‘ouch’ from me for that rhyme either – pure class. But as for singing ‘far’ with the 5 syllables (fa-a-a-a-ar) it needs to fit the tune, well it’s different at least.

    But did you see the brilliant song Niall posted yesterday on FaceAche? Some brilliant Blackwellesque rhymes here too.
    https://vimeo.com/83850464

    … but then a couple of hours after he posted it, the terrible news about Dolores, who was like musical family to Niall I suppose. Condolences to all who are feeling such loss.

    16 January 2018

  48. Phyllis Triggs on The difference between us and all the other bands…Go »

    In Dublin’s fair city
    Where the hospitality (ouch!)
    Is far beyond comparison,
    With vocals so mellow
    Niall thrilled Portobello
    When Half Arsed Half Biscuit
    Played live alive-o

    (Sorry Exxo, couldn’t resist!)
    That is sad news about Dolores. I had no idea of the connection between her, the Cranberries and Niall. Just shows the man’s musical pedigree. Condolences.

    15 January 2018

  49. EXXO on The difference between us and all the other bands…Go »

    Now Dublin’s fair city’s
    Heard thirty-one fine ditties,
    From the first one -‘DD Eyes’
    To the last – sweet ‘Trumpton’.

    In a bar old and narrow
    Niall sang like a sparrow
    On cough drops and strepsils,
    Alive, alive though.

    [You can guess the rest.

    …but so very sad to hear the news about Dolores out of the Cranberries just now (for those that don’t know, as a teenager Niall pretty much recruited Dolores into the Limerick band that became the Cranberries, more or less as his replacement in about 1990].

    15 January 2018

  50. EXXO on And the Pope said to his aide…Go »

    Chalie Tully, sorry, that’s a very embarrassing slip indeed. I was thinking about the manager Jimmy McGrory, a devout Catholic who organised the Lazio friendly in 1950 in order to enable a visit to the Pope.

    15 January 2018