27 Feb 2007
Happy Mondays and James for V Festival 2007 
The line-up for this year's V Festivals has just been lined up and it includes reformed ex-FACers Happy Mondays and James.

18-19 August 2007
Hylands Park, Chelmsford
Weston Park, Staffordshire

Tickets on sale: 9am, Thursday 1 March 2007

More details at vfestival.com.

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Control on-set pics in Pop magazine 
Check out the Spring / Summer 2007 issue of Pop magazine for some excellent photos taken on the set of Control last year by Hedi Slimane along with some text by Charles Gant.

Thanks to OMMCRD for spotting.
Shaun Ryder interview in the Observer 
Miranda Sawyer interviews a newly fit and and clean Shaun Ryder for the Observer under the headline 'It's great when you're straight'. Shaun regales us with tales of alien abduction and how if all else fails he could become a registered charity(!).
26 Feb 2007
New John Macklin website 
John Macklin, the designer who produced several latter period pieces for Factory Records, including FAC 345, has a new website.

www.johnmacklin.com

You can also check out his designs for Haçienda 11 and 12.

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25 Feb 2007
Kooky Records website relaunch 
Cerysmatic Factory is pleased to announce that the Kooky Records website, www.kookydisc.co.uk, has been refixed and relaunched.

The site features the full Kooky Catalogue with full Paypal- and snail mail-driven shop facilities. If it's still available, you'll be able to buy it there. Check out the highly competitive prices.

Kooky has three main bands: The Durutti Column, The Retro Spankees (who've just finished a national tour) and The National Parks. Full details, including news on eBay sales and new albums are available along with streaming mp3 audio.

Fans of The Durutti Column can find out about how to sign up to The Durutti Column Subscription Group.

Plus, there is an exclusive new track by The National Parks called 'I'll Never Stop Coming Home To You', mixed at Phil Cleaver Home of Sound, available to stream.

Congratulations to Alex and Phil. It was a pleasure.

-

Official sites for Kooky Bands:

www.thedurutticolumn.com, MySpace
www.theretrospankees.com, MySpace
www.thenationalparksmusic.com, MySpace

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24 Feb 2007
Northside Live at The Ritz, Manchester, 3 May 2007 
Northside's comeback continues apace with a gig at The Ritz on 3 May 2007.

Buy tickets priced 12.50 GBP (+ booking fee) at ticketline.co.uk

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21 Feb 2007
Cath Carroll on MySpace 
A new player in the recent Factory Records MySpace stakes is Cath Carroll.

Her new site offers news on digital re-releases and Cath's production duties for a Chicago-area band called Hollus.

www.myspace.com/cathcarroll
www.cathcarroll.com

--

Thanks to Mike for spotting.

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20 Feb 2007
Durutti Column track on new mix cd 
Fred Deakin (ex-Lemon Jelly) has just put out a mix CD entitled Triptych, featuring the likes of XTC, Shades of Rhythm, and, er, Bernard Cribbins. It also features The Durutti Column's 'Madeleine' on CD3!

A must-buy, by the sounds of it...

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17 Feb 2007
Buy Sporadic Three direct from Kooky on eBay 
Ahead of the official release date now's your chance to buy the new Durutti Column compilation Sporadic Three as well as other Durutti albums, the Kooky 10 cd (which itself contains Durutti tracks).

Check items for sale by Kooky on eBay.

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16 Feb 2007
You Hurt Me... but now your profile is up on MySpace 
Shark Vegas, one of Factory Records' mysterious "one-hit wonders", has a MySpace page containing a detailed line-up and biography.

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15 Feb 2007
Tony Wilson video interview 
There's a big piece in the printed edition (not available online) of tonight's Manchester Evening News about the response to yesterday's articles about and by Tony Wilson.

There are 12 pages of messages of goodwill on the MEN message board.

There's also a video interview with Wilson himself.

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Bickershaw Deeply Vale Greenfield Family Music and Arts Festival 
Plans are well advanced for the inaugural Bickershaw Deeply Vale Greenfield Family Music and Arts Festival according to BBC Manchester.

There were plans to hold a revival of the Deeply Vale Festival last year but these fell through. Undaunted, the organisers hatched a plan to jointly revive Bickershaw (which was first held in 1972) with Deeply Vale (started in 1976).

Whilst the event is subject to licence, the organisers are confident that it will go ahead and that artists such as The Fall, The Durutti Column, Doves, Elbow and others will play.

www.deeplyvale.com

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The Modern Method for Marketing Manchester 
Marketing Manchester announces that visitors to www.visitmanchester.com (the official tourism website for the city) are now able to download free Manchester music podcasts, each one featuring the personal highlights of the city with an established Manchester musician including Guy Garvey (Elbow), Peter Hook (New Order) and Mike Joyce (ex-The Smiths).

In addition, the podcasts will provide a platform for introducing some of Manchester's new, up and coming music talent', as well as highlighting some of the most inspiring tourism attractions and developments in the city region.

Bring on Frank Sidebottom!

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14 Feb 2007
Tony Wilson's cancer battle 
The Manchester Evening News has revealed the full extent of Tony Wilson's health problems. His right kidney was completely consumed by cancer and hence he had it removed in January. He now having follow-up treatment at Christies Hospital in Manchester.

Tony has also written a tribute to the National Health Service including all the doctors and nurses who have cared for him.

Best wishes Tony and get well soon.

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Giving Alvar Aalto To The UK 
From 22 February, the Barbican in London presents the very first retrospective of Finnish designer Alvar Aalto.

Aalto's contribution to the world of everything Factory Records was small but notable. Cerysmatic can do no better than to point you to what Andrew James wrote about the Aalto connection in an excellent article for Scream City 2 last year:

"In Scandinavia, Alvar Aalto worked in native woods rather than the chrome, glass and steel of Germany, but displayed a similar design sensibility to his Bauhaus counterparts. This aesthetic caught the eye of Haçienda designer Ben Kelly some 50 years later, when he opted to employ Aalto's signature three-legged stools in the basement bar of the club.

"Factory boss Tony Wilson claimed that the Haç was an altrusistic act of enlightenment for Manchester's benighted youth, as much as it was a post-modern gin palace. "We're giving Alvar Aalto to the kids," he proclaimed, magnanimously. Whether the kids actually wanted Alvar Aalto is open to debate; the stools were variously trashed, stolen and used as ashtrays."

Alvar Aalto: Through the Eyes of Shigeru Ban
22 February 2007 - 13 May 2007
Barbican Art Gallery

Tickets: Tickets online 6.00 GBP
8.00 GBP on the door
Open daily 11am - 8pm, excluding Tue & Thu 11am - 6pm.

--

Thanks to (the other) JC for spotting.

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13 Feb 2007
As fresh as a daisy 
Simon Donohue in the Manchester Evening News reports on the updating of the daisy logo previously successfully used by James and which will be used on all promotional material for their forthcoming tour and at wearejames.com, the new official site.
James Tour April 2007 
SJM Concerts by arrangement with X-Ray presents

James
Tour April 2007
24hr cc hotline
0871 2200 260
or buy online:
gigsandtours.com

Glasgow
Carling Academy
(DF Concerts)
Saturday 21 April
0870 771 2000

Newcastle
Carling Academy
Monday 23 April
0870 771 2000

Birmingham
Carling Academy
Tuesday 24 April
0870 771 2000

London Brixton
Carling Academy
Friday 27 April
0870 771 2000

Manchester
MEN Arena
Saturday 28 April

Plus Special Guests
The Twang

wearejames.com

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The North/South Divide 
First the BBC commissions a survey on whether Manchester or Birmingham is England's second city. (It's Manchester)...

... and then the March 2007 edition of The Word carries a highly entertaining and not-so-scientific assessment by Stuart Maconie of The North v The South in music. The pen pics of Joy Division ("combining Ingmar Bergman-esque fascination with the essential emptiness of life with a Bernard Manning-esque desire to tell dirty jokes and get pissed a lot") and Happy Mondays ("Going to the game, mister? Bad area round here, you know. Nice car. Go on, mind yer car for a quid, mister") are worth the price of admission alone whilst a cartoon of the former fills out some space.

In the same issue, John Simm talks to Andrew Harrison about, amongst other things, playing Bernard Sumner in 24 Hour Party People. Simm recalls that his main memory of the movie is being "wasted all the time". He says "If you weren't wasted on set, someone would come and sort you out. It was very real, shall we say, especially for the lads who were playing Happy Mondays. I don't know why they're not dead. It was just an amazing laugh".

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10 Feb 2007
Les Disques du Crepuscule 
Check out Click Opera for an illuminating discussion about Les Disques du Crepuscule (and designer Benoît Hennebert in particular) which freely references the Crepuscule Image Bank.
9 Feb 2007
Kevin Hewick update 
There's plenty new to check out at kevinhewick.co.uk, the official website of Leicester troubadour Kevin Hewick:

Free mp3s

- 'Morphia' performed live at Leeds University May 6 1980 (not the version on FACT 24 A Factory Quartet although other tracks from that album were from this gig).
- 'Quarterhearted' an unreleased demo from 2004.
- 'An Object She's Left Behind' from the still-unreleased 'Doomcloud' album.

Blog

Kevin's new thoughts on supporting Joy Division, ACR and Section 25 on 7 Feb 1980, the CD reissue of 'From Brussels With Love' and the recording of 'Haystack' with New Order.

Gigs

New lists of the major gigs / supports Kevin has been involved with over the years plus details of upcoming gigs including some of Kevin's legendary 2/3 hour specials.

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Happy Mondays gigography 
Check out a new Happy Mondays gigography courtesy T at happymondays.info.

Spot any missing gigs? It's forum-based so feel free to contribute.

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8 Feb 2007
For Sale: Vini Reilly's Gibson Les Paul Jimmy Page Signature Model guitar 
Vini Reilly has decided to sell his Gibson Les Paul Jimmy Page Signature Model guitar.

Its colour is 'Pageburst' which is a beautiful subtle caramel sunburst, with 'burstbucker' pick-ups specially designed by Gibson in conjunction with Jimmy Page himself.

All hardware is gold-plated as standard and the guitar comes with a scratchplate signed by Jimmy Page as well as a certificate and the original hard case.

Its condition is immaculate with only minimal signs of use as Vini is pretty meticulous with his instruments and it is supplied with the original Gibson hard case. This guitar has been used on the last three albums by The Durutti Column as well as live work and sessions for various Radio commitments.

New, these guitars list at GBP 5000 and they were not a mass-produced Les Paul model. Vini will consider any offers around GBP 3,750. Additionally he will meet the buyer in person for lunch in Manchester when collecting.

For any further enquiries contact Phil Cleaver at philcleaver@btinternet.com

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6 Feb 2007
In The City of New York 
Tony Wilson, who is recuperating following his operation, plans to go ahead with the launch of In The City of New York in June of this year according to Adam Moss in the Manchester Evening News.

A further incarnation of In The City, In The City AAA (Australia Australasia Asia) has been postponed until next year.

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5 Feb 2007
Architecture and Morality: re-release details 
www.omd.uk.com reports more details on the forthcoming re-release of OMD's classic album Architecture and Morality as a double cd/dvd package:

- DVD will be out on 30 April 2007 and will feature a special, long version of OMD's original Drury Lane Theatre concert with the inclusion of a previously unseen performance of Motion And Heart.

- the DVD, which will be available in PAL and NTSC versions, will also include the promo videos for Souvenir and Maid Of Orleans as well as a Top Of The Pops performance of Joan Of Arc.
2 Feb 2007
Biting Tongues live @ Islington Mill 
Biting Tongues are to reform for a special one-off gig at Islington Mill Studios, Salford on 23 February 2007 according to bitingtongues.com.

The line-up for the gig will be Ken Hollings, Howard Walmsley, Graham Massey, Colin Seddon and Eddie Sherwood.

"The Surprise Return of Biting Tongues. The 1979/83 team. New Hormones / Factory Records artists. Manchester's missing link in Post Punk Funk Noir. Effortless ferocity, exhilarating and urgent as ever (The Wire). Playing music from Don't Heal, Live It, Libreville."

Support from:

Space Heads (Richard Harrison and Andy Diagram - Electric trumpet and drum duo)
Triclops (Tabletop Audio Laboratory)
DJs: Graham Massey and Paddy Steer

Biting Tongues are now also on Myspace.

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1 Feb 2007
Ian Brown to collaborate with Paul Ryder and Andy Rourke? 
Rosie Swash in The Guardian reports on rumours that Ian Brown is set to Paul Ryder (ex-Happy Mondays and now of Big Arm) and Andy Rourke (ex-The Smiths) on the follow up to his Solarized album. Furthermore, and perhaps more surprisingly, it is reported that Brown has already been in the studio with none other than Sinead O'Connor.

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Peter Saville colour wheel
A Certain Ratio

"Manchester, 1978. In the beginning there were four: Jez Kerr (bass), Martin Moscrop (guitar/trumpet), Peter Terrel (guitar/effects) and Simon Topping (vocals/trumpet). Four thin boys with a name borrowed from a Brian Eno record, the intense, drummerless quartet initially drew influence from Wire, Eno, the Velvets and Kraftwerk, and gained a manager in Anthony Wilson of Factory Records.

"May 1979 saw the release of their first ACR single, the dark All Night Party, although the sound and musicianship of the band would be transformed by the arrival of funky drummer Donald Johnson (DoJo) in August. Over the next few months the band gigged widely, often with Joy Division as part of Factory packages, and recorded demos with producer Martin Hannett as well as a Peel session. Their support slot with Talking Heads on their UK tour in December 1979 set David Byrne on a new course, and provided the compelling live half of their chic cassette package The Graveyard and the Ballroom. Post-punk, ACR now reflected the influence of Funkadelic, George Clinton, Bootsy Collins, The Bar Kays and James Brown."

- intro to ACR Biography by James Nice (LTM)

The Durutti Column