December 8, 2000 11:36


What a combination, eh? You should have seen what Alex James was wearing...

BLUR'S ALEX JAMES found himself sharing the stage with a pair of strippers last night as he rocked out with the newly-reformed ZODIAC MINDWARP at the LONDON 333 CLUB.

The louche bassist turned almost the same colour as his fetching red heavy metal neckerchief as the two ladies got down to their g-strings as the gig reached its climax - and the two woman flanking Zodiac himself - aka Mark Manning - flung off their bras.

James initially intended to keep his appearance as a surprise, but finally relented to let NME.COM announce it. Taking to the stage just after midnight, he supplemented the three piece on bass as a favour to his friend Manning, a fellow Idler contributor.

Alex also revealed his brand-new skinhead haircut in public for the first time. However, NME.COM hopes that the plastic German helmet, sleeveless denim jacket, chunky silver necklace and bandana he was wearing last night are definitely not permanent parts of a new look.

Cigarette permanently fixed in his mouth, Alex and the Zodiac boys played a seven-song set, which included their one hit, 1987's 'Prime Mover', plus 'High Priest Of Love', 'Stop Me For Love' and '20,000 Women'.

The gig, thought to be the cult band's first UK show for five years, was held as part of the Idler magazine's Christmas party, which also featured a live set from new London band SchwaB and a poetry recital from punk legend John Cooper Clarke. Billed shows from Adam And Joe and Louis Theroux unfortunately didn't happen.

Also at the party were television presenter Mariella Frostrup, Elton John's boyfriend David Furnish, Neil Morrissey, Fat Les frontman Keith Allen and Black Box Recorder's John Moore, also one of Idler's founders.

It's rumoured that Zodiac Mindwarp will also make an appearance sometime soon at Alan McGee's Radio 4 club at the London Notting Hill Arts Centre, where the band's records regularly receive an airing.

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