21 Oct 2017
The Gay Traitor and Kim Philby 
Anthony Blunt

Negative photograph of Anthony Blunt as featured on the Gay Traitor cocktail bar list from FAC 51 The Haçienda.

Kim Philby

Annotated photograph of Kim Philby (after whom the main bar in FAC 51 The Haçienda was named.

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A negative and photograph from the AHW collection, presumably dating from the pre-FAC 51 era as it was being planned.

Blunt and Philby were infamous members of the Cambridge Five, a ring of spies who passed intelligence information to the Soviet Union during and after World War Two.

The third bar at the Haçienda, Hicks, was named after the cryptonym of Guy Burgess, another member of the Five.

Anthony Blunt

The Kim Philby Bar (neon sign as installed at FAC 491)

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Biting Tongues

In the grey days of late 1970s post-punk Manchester, youth culture was a serious affair: every musical performance was measured mostly by the conviction of its delivery. The term 'New Wave' opened up free vistas where acquired skills could once again be exercised after punk's monochrome blur. It could be applied to anything from a James 'Blood' Ulmer record to the latest Throbbing Gristle release, Magazine to Swell Maps. Move outside that terrain into Sun Ra, Parliament, Frank Sinatra and Martin Denny, and your options were suddenly without limit...

Then came Tony Wilson's Factory Club (at the Russell Club in Hulme) offering an open invitation to experiment that was taken up when Ken Hollings, Howard Walmsley, Eddie Sherwood and a few others decided to make some noise to accompany their 16mm silent epic Biting Tongues. A further performance followed a few weeks later, when Colin Seddon and Graham Massey disbanded their Post Natals project and joined up. The film itself, a flashing series of negative images, became a memory; the name remained.

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