Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Saturday, October 06, 2018


Madrid is under construction. Traffic calming and all kinds of other shenanigans are making it murder for local businesses. Like everywhere else, great places are disappearing for one reason and another. I’m all for clean air but some grime is required too. And I’m not talking about the latest strain of urban music.

It was great to be reacquainted with Barbara from Get Hip through the ‘small world’ universe that seems to connect a bunch of us. El Pez Gordo was the scene before scooting up to WEIRDO! with Maitane. 

I was convinced that I’d miss The Dustaphonics but they were only a couple of songs into their set when I arrived at Wurli. The Cramps have a lot to answer for and it’s wild how mainstream this type of thing is right around now. Not sales wise – but just in terms of seepage into the general culture and I understand why people like them.

This time I didn’t hit town running. It was a more measured affair only really hampered by thinking that my favourite pizza joint had gone out of business.

On Friday, I took the train to visit Sara, Ramon and Duero out in Alpedetre. Once I got a beat on the map for the station it was plain sailing and I have to say that the double decker choo choo was muy clean and comfortable. I’m told they’re not always reliable but this one was right on time both ways. It’s nice and quiet out there but very close to town with a lovely old station. We had Sara’s mom’s meatball recipe and ate so much that we all felt like taking a wee siesta. It's a very sedate part of the world so close to MadToon.

Last night at La Alegria
A WEIRDO!/WURLI double header followed and this time I missed the bands but managed to see Inigo Munster. This was good because subsequent attempts to meet up just didn’t come together at all. I was gifted the album by Tipex from Valencia and would like to see how this dense stoner drone from the corner of Kyuss and Crazy Horse (Krazy Huss?) type sludge was live. And lo, Pizza tres cruces was open. The proprietor seemed perplexed as I told him that I thought it was closed. He probably didn’t understand my gibbering tinged with relief as I waited patiently on my slice. You can never go back to Papizza after this stuff.  After putting the world to right with Jorge I ambled back around the building site type landscape to my digs.

Met up with Ulla and Lagarto at lunchtime on Saturday where we took in a great new regular happening at Madklyn. Grand to hang with them and to see many familiar faces. It seemed like I wouldn’t see Marcela who recently left El Sol but she was right there. It was like having Templo Del Gato open during the day and hearing the music that you would have heard there during the wee hours. I hadn’t been in Madklyn since the close of Sesentafest last November 5th. A little later I had a couple of canas with Jorge from Munster and then it was nearly time for what - for me - was the big event in addition to seeing a whole raft of friends.

LUCY and the RATS 
It was a bit of a downer to find out that The Plastic Hammers weren’t playing but it was good to see Hormiga and to meet Tony. I hope to make it Oviedo one of these days during a proper Spanish tour. A quick nip into Ovni with Diego turned into old home week ahead of seeing Lucy and the Rats who were nothing short of magnificent. Everyone there reckon so too and I urge you to get the record and to see them wherever and whenever you can.

There was one problem that loomed over the night. This being that I had to leave town at 07.30. It meant that I followed the Jorge system of hydration over the course and doing so lessened the chance of having a sorry heid. The only real worry was resisting the temptation to grab a few zzzzz’s.

Duncan Reid and the Big Heads
Duncan Reid and the Big Heads are an entertaining combo also and in terms of their show, it’s a winner that they don’t snuggle into any of the wobbly nostalgia that so many variations on an old act might. This is a high energy pop affair that does deliver a few of those old Boys ‘hits’ but not in a backdated sense. I’m going to try and catch them in Edinburgh on November 17th just to make sure it wasn’t just a fluke. I’m sure it wasn’t.

Next September (2019), Wurlitzer will become a teenager. Long may this delinquent hostelry reign and if I'm spared then I'll be there.

Construction and Demolition
time on San Jeronimo 
From the outset, I kind of buggered up my travel to mean that it was a tight call in relation to what I wanted to do. I always run out of time but this time there were other logistics that I never quite grasped until it was too late.

In closing. I had to leave the party but I didn’t fall asleep and got to the airport in good time. Only to find out that the flight was delayed. It could have been way worse though and that manifested itself with my first experience of the new Border Control area at Edinburgh Airport, a necessary evil perhaps but plumbing new depths in inefficiency. 

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