Jack from Friendly Fires here reporting back from the Shockwaves NME Awards Tour 2009. Here are a few highlights so far (and here's the first installment of our blog).
Birmingham Academy, February 4
Good opportunity to do some shopping at the Bullring although we spend all our time marvelling at the amazing sugar-packed breakfast cereals on offer in Selfridges food hall. The best one is called Squeeky Bitz.
After the show we head to Glasvegas' beautifully lit dressing room. Caroline from Glasvegas mixes us a special drink, that doesn't have a name yet. Its content is 2 parts Buckfast to 1 part each Red Bull and WKD Blue.
Against hugely stacked odds, it's a sumptuously tasty, peppy brew that with the right snappy name could sweep the pubs, offies and playgrounds of the nation. If you have any ideas email them to email@example.com and we'll cut you in somehow when it becomes a huge multinational brand.
Lincoln Engine Shed, February 10
Now we find ourselves in Lincoln, feeling somewhat jaded after missing our third day off on the trot, having spent the previous day filming the Album Chart Show. The experience begged the question 'Has there ever been a band as grating as the All American Rejects?'
We had to listen to them soundchecking some god-awful tune for what seemed like eternity, which left us cursing the moment 12 million years ago when ears replaced gills the sides of our amphibian ancestors' heads.
Not an awful lot going in Lincoln to be honest. Its a campus Uni, so there lots of bright young things running around in hockey kit, asking each other how drunk they got last night (answer: soooo drunk).
The Engine Shed is a nice space though; fairy lights adorn the ceiling and there's a staircase coming down onto the stage like its the set of some high-kicking musical. Flame-haired vixen Florence and her beefy Spurs-supporting decent egg of a drummer Chris come on during 'On Board' to provide some vox and toms, and its all messy and rocking in the best way possible. Out.
Norwich UEA, February 12
The tour has long been itching for a kickabout, and today was chosen to be the day. I was super excited to see whether James from Glasvegas' keepy-up skills were still up to anything, being an ex-Dumbarton player and all.
The turnout was kind of sparse in the end. Me, Edd G, Tommy (White Lies charming keyboard player) and Norwich scenester and friend to the stars David Grey got our PE kits on for a muddy game of headers n' volleys. The ball was a little hard and pitch a little wonky, but at least the requisite nod in the direction of physical exercise was made.
Florence mentioned that the front row was full of people in New Era caps at the front of the stage and lo and behold one was thrown on to the stage during our set.
I perched it on top of my head Brian Harvey-style for most of Paris, before remembering that New Eras are bit too 2007 to be wearing in this day and age. Headed back to London straight after the gig, and got drunkenly whipped at FIFA on our bus's new PS3. Tottenham 1 - Watford 6 (sob).