4 Jan 2007
G-MEX reopens (and then closes) its doors to music 
Manchester's G-MEX reopened its doors to live music after a nine-year hiatus for a special gig by Morrissey to commemorate a further and final closure to music.

Famously, in terms of Factory history, G-MEX played host to seminal gigs by New Order, A Certain Ratio, Happy Mondays, James and the Tenth Event of FAC 151 Festival of the Tenth Summer. This last event clearly remains in Morrissey's mind because according to Chris Long's review of this final historic gig on BBC Manchester he said "I stood on this very spot 20 years ago playing with a music hall act you've probably forgotten."

You can join in the debate about what was the best gig ever (in a venue notoriously unsuited to gigs) on this BBC forum.

G-MEX, which was formerly the Grand Central railway station, will concentrate on being an exhibition centre following a refit.

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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.

- extract from the LTM Biting Tongues biography

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