Paul Draper at the Manchester Ritz and Electric Brixton, 1st and 8th March 2018

In a few weeks’ time on this blog, I will reach gig no.11 of All The Gigs Of My Life,  a truly astonishing night that completely turned my little music-obsessed world around: my first ever Mansun gig in April 1997. But for now, I have my 149th and 150th gigs to talk about, and they were seeing Mansun’s singer Paul Draper playing one of the most important albums of my life, the album that led me to go and see them on that amazing night in 1997: “Attack of the Grey Lantern”.


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All the gigs of my life: Gig 8 – My Life Story / Orlando, Friday, February 14, 1997, ULU


My first gig as a Proper Londoner, living and working in the city I’d dreamed of for years, was to see the flamboyantly orchestral My Life Story. But it was the support band I really wanted to see that might, a band I thought, for a few glorious weeks, were going to become my New Fave Band Ever: Orlando.

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The Soundtrack To Now: Rae Morris, “Someone Out There”


In this world of bland, unchallenging chart pop, where a small pool of blankly pretty boys and girls mumble a few words over each others’ tracks to the same sanitised, autotuned backing, we need pop stars like Rae Morris. Pop stars who sing lyrics like “I don’t want no ice, I’m already cold enough” and “have they found a cure for me yet?” in a voice of liquid crystal, and who release such outrageously, inventively compelling and tuneful albums as “Someone Out There”.

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