Well, no need for meaninglessly barbed banter at local band's expense this
month. Whereas normally you could expect this column to jump on the chance of
Matthew Kelly's fall from grace with some suitable caustic comments about some
poor local musician who has never done us any harm, but we have, for no good
reason, decided to make the brunt of our attempts at infantile schoolboy humour,
there is really only one story in Blamville this month - The Forum's incredibly
successful ten year celebrations. Packed houses for Capdown, Inme, David Devant
and Rachel Stamp and, probably while most of you are reading this, a capacity
audience of some hundreds of you enjoying our ten bands over two nights special,
it really has been an incredible month at Forum Towers. We just want to thank
all of you again for turning out and making the celebrations one of the peaks of
the last ten years of great gigs. We can't say it often enough, but the reason
why The Forum keeps on going is because you keep coming. Thank you for all your
A final note of thanks, whilst we are overcome with the bounty of life's good fortune, to all the staff that have kept and keep the place going for the last ten years. Now I happen to know that some of them, and you know who you are, were most upset not to get their photos in last month's Blam alongside pictures of Jason, Mark, Isobel, Mark, Randall and Lawrence. We don't have photos of all of you so we couldn't do that, but if we could we would blow all your photos up to size A0 posters and flypost them throughout Kent with the word "geezer" written underneath them. So, just to try and give everybody a mention, can we specifically thank Ian, Dave, Max, Gabriel, Wolff, Dave, Charlotte, Matt, Phil, Jon, Patch, Justine, Dan, Andy, Nick, Spike, Pete, and all the other people who have worked and continue to work so hard on the patrons behalf. You know who you are and what you do and you don't really need a photo to prove it. On top of which, this magazine is read by the public and it was as much as their eyeballs could stand to have to look at the Boy Lawrence's ugly mug without inflicting your ugly fizzogs on them as well.
Blam is owned and produced by The Forum. We are
poor starving musicians and artists who don't even have
a garret so there is very little point in coming after us for money just because we accused you of being a donkey basher, but if you are really intent on litigation, then you sue us via
The Forum, Fonthill, The Common, Fonthill, Tunbridge Wells, Kent TN4 8YU
But nine times out of ten I wouldn't bother because our lawyers, FULLER, SCHEIDT & BLAGG are the fastest legal minds in Cricklewood. It has come to our attention that these apologies are being read by some people for the purposes of humour and not for the very serious legal issues that we are trying to make about slander and libel. Whilst you may find it mildly amusing to chuckle about words like fanny batter, knob cheese and anal drippings, these phrases are not intended to be read for ribaldry purposes but in order to emphasise our commitment to you, the reader, to speak in a language that young people understand. Soapy tit wank may seem like an humorous three word soliloquy, but kindly refrain from tittering until you get the full gist of our intent. Thankyou
Murder One + One Pity
Saturday 8 February
At this point in the proceedings, I'd usually draw your attention, dear reader, to the photograph
on the left, and say a caustic comment such as, "Sorry girls, but they're
married". This month however, following advice received from the Intensive Care
Unit at Kent & Sussex Hospital that to do so would be extremely unwise, and
irresponsible behaviour for a man of my advanced years............So I won't!
The 'Horn's reputation goes before them like a flotilla of Viking longships; lootin', tootin' and pillaging every town that figures on their date sheet. This band of Corby nu-metallers are angry men. In fact angrier than Matthew Kelly was when told he had to pull out of Peter Pan!
Featuring a double headed ferocious Pit Bull snarl in Frank Regan and John Loughlin, Raging Speedhorn are reprobates that play metal as it should be played; by people who dream of supporting AC/DC, and loathe the super-annuated wafflings of that perpetual, ahem, teenager Fred Durst (Is she really going out with him, Britney, that is? - Hello! Reading Ed). This is a band that plays hard, and parties hard. Thinking nothing of trashing Slipknot's dressing room, and hell-raising in Spain (never a terribly good idea). If you like it loud and heavy, then Speedhorn are your men. Expect an hour of brutal menace!
Torqamada + Little Hell
Friday 14 February
Amen's debut album was mooted as one of the great turning points in punk.
That's not simply in the current wave of punk bands but in punk as a
whole. Lauded by Iggy Pop, Steve Jones and Raven amongst many, the album
was referred to in the press material as "a wake-up call for the damned,
the oblivious, the disenfranchised and the disenchanted". Dark, spiky,
abrasive, politically aggrieved, spewing forth from Los Angeles , a town
that has come to represent the worst of Western civilization for many, and
that has spawned, in its rap and punk scenes, some of the most
confrontational music of the decade.
Conceived in L.A. by singer Casey Chaos in 1994, Amen was a vision of harsh sonic reality, with piercing self introspection and disturbing social insight. Currently between labels this is punk Uncle Sam style. What more do you want...fries?
PLEASE NOTE THAT THE TWO SHOWS
ABOVE HAVE SINCE SOLD OUT
Captain Everything! + Howard's Alias
Saturday 1st February
YELLOW # 5 is the new album from Michigan sextet, MUSTARD PLUG. This album is the closest you'll get to capturing the heart-pounding, death-defying sound that is their live showcase of ska, rock, pop and punk. It's energetic, passionate and catchier than herpes in a jacuzzi (Note to self: Good name for a band!) Revelling in it's authenticity and tru-punk attitood, ska fans, rock fans, punx, and just about any random tosser you'd care to meet will feel the love, warmth and moisture that this mighty mighty band has to give.
Eden Maine + Johnny Truant
Friday 7 February
Hardcore and 'emonic' (Wow! I've just made that up), melodic counterpoints,
noisy guitars, stop, start, stop, start, quiet bit, noisy bit, repeat to fade.
It's all bloody marvellous stuff ain't it? If you're into Converge and
Lostprophets, then this is your lucky night. If you're not, well then, stay at
home and watch a gardening programme Grandad.
All three bands tonight will provide a sonic onslaught that will push the boundaries of noise as we know it into the neutral quadrant! or somewhere.
Cyrano + Kimera
Sunday 23 February
While they may skim across territory blanded out by the likes of Jimmy Eat World and Rival Schools, JETPLANE LANDING are something else entirely, They give more on every count, like they just couldn’t give less, as if it wouldn’t be right considering the wealth they carry around with them.
Opening with a barrage of scalding duel-headed vocals and bullet-hole beats, ‘Effect A Change’, pins you to the nearest wall, menacingly staring you out point-blank, all with a wry smile – and looks like they’ve peaked at the first hurdle. But they just smash through the rest. The likes of ‘This Is Not Revolution Rock’ and ‘Tiny Bombs’ jab pop melodies like rivets across waves of your more expected rockage. Giving more than enough reason to jerk flailingly around the stage, precariously mount amps and stand atop monitors. As much cliché as they may end up collecting on the way, with enthusiasm so damn infectious as this even the toughest cynic would shed a tear.
Reuben + Miss Black America
Friday 28 February
Bolton , like many towns in England, is a truly uninspiring place. With a social life that centres around the weekend oblivion through your drug of choice and the bright lights of Manchester too close to avoid. It is little surprise that the four members of Kinesis were drawn to each other at school in the summer of 2000. Too young and intelligent to do the weekly pub / club / fight thing and fired by a love of guitars and politics Mike, Tom, Neil and Conor were (and are) the type of people that had to be in a band. The release of "Billboard Beauty" saw Kinesis play their biggest venues so supporting Hundred Reasons and the Manics.
Skanking Skater Night
Friday 21 February
Bands & friends come together for one night of Punk, Ska & Hardcore. A recently established promoting group "Skanking Skater Records" along with "Desolate Releases" brings you 6, yes, 6! of the best up and coming local punk, ska & hardcore bands from Sussex and Kent. The night will include the bands: Minor Defect, At The Deli, Scream Bloody Murder, The Grapeseed Bandits, Henry Holds His Own and Private Monkie. Buy a video of the gig at www.desolatereleases.cjb.net, also free Minor Defect badges for the 1st 20 people though the door!
Folk at the Forum
Tuesday 4 February
Introducing a new night to the already wide ranging and eclectic evenings that
the Forum already hosts. (All you ska haters can just #### off!) We have great
pleasure in playing host to folk hero, HARVEY ANDREWS. "A night with Harvey will
put you in touch with yourselves, with your past, your present, your childhood
and parenthood,with humour and insight. Harvey's a fine raconteur, singer and
songwriter. Prepare to be entertained by someone who's been in the biz for 35
years".( Blimey, did he used to be in Joeyfat then? - Ed)
FOLK - it's not all real ale and woolly jumpers you know!
Spanking for Ghana!
Wednesday 26 February
What a charity line-up this is, with all proceeds going to a TWGGS initiative called Ghana 2003 which raises money for local schools and hospitals to be built, and generally improve living conditions there. This evening sees FIVE BANDS FOR A MERE FIVER!. Each band will bring something different to the Forum. Headlining act will be Moonska signings SPANKBOY, who after finishing a 70 date tour still found energy to go back out on the road with [spunge]. Johnny X and the lads from DRAG will enthral you with their somewhat bizarre stage shenanigans. Simon and his reprobates THE IDEOTS will doubtlessly spark another "whose the hardest?" debate on the Forum message board. The newly reformed FLYING CARNIES will attract all the ladies who'll want to see the swoonsome Matt Haydock (didn't they chuck him out? - Ed. Completing the line-up ill be Stable lads, MELALEUCA, definitely a band to watch. All this fantastic entertainment, and it's for a good cause!
David Devant & his Spirit Wife
Tell your friends. Tell all your
friends. David Devant and His Spirit Wife must be better known. Think Ziggy
Stardust starring in Rentaghost, with a Blur-enhanced soundtrack and you get
close to this unique experience. And a full house got close to this experience at
the Forum’s 10th anniversary birthday piss up...err...party last Friday 17th
Kitted out in a vociferous pink shirt and spangly boots, singer the Vessel rocked through a set which included a couple of new tracks alongside old favourites such as Miscellaneous, Pimlico and Ginger. The theatrics normally associated with DDAHSW were not present, but not needed. The songs spoke for themselves. This was another glorious performance from the masters of quirky indie. Some punters at the gig were David Devant virgins, but where better to lose your cherry than at the Forum? And like all true newly de-flowered people, they will now be on a mission to get some more. Those more experienced in the Devant ways chanted “Auntie Mabel!” enticing the band back for a rapturously-received encore. “Thanks for joining in the spooky sounds,” the Vessel remarked as the band finished 'Goodnight'. No, you sartorially super specimen. Thank YOU!
As celebrations for the toilet’s 10th birthday continued after the gig, boss Mark Davyd said "..the fact the Forum has been here for 10 years was two fingers up at those who thought it wouldn’t last". Or something like that. To be honest, by the time I fell onto the cold grass outside the moist venue I had killed so many braincells on cheap sparkling wine (Cheap! - Catering Manager) I couldn’t really remember what he had said. So here’s to the Forum and 10 years of spooky noises. - Glen Fiditch
Mmmmm...it's Acoustic Lounge
Sunday 2 & Sunday 16 February
Yes! It's back, and this time it's bigger, better, and somehow even more comfy and easier to slip into than the slippers your old man threw out just after Christmas. The all-singing, all-dancing (!), all-strummin' acoustic lounge will run every other Sunday. Forget about your double applied science lesson at school tomorrow, forget about that 6:15 running late to Cannon Street, forget about that long queue at the Job Centre! Tonight, just sit back, dunk your toast in your cup of Earl Grey and luxuriate as Jason & the Astronauts, Rosko, The Incredible Mr Leeves, Songs of My Lap, Dean Smith, Joe and Tim and the SPGs sing you songs of longing, heartbreak, desire and the sub-Kerouac quality of the latest Footballers Wives plotline.
Oooh ooh ooh! Much excitement ahoy as the Stable draws to the end of the first
round. This month sees three shows, playing host to ten glorious bands!
MONDAY 3rd FEBRUARY sees Forum faves, Big Si and the lads from FRAY, those avant gardeners UP C DOWN C LEFT C RIGHT C, with a quite frankly unnecessarily long name and indie upstarts from Tunbridge Wells ABSENT MINDS
MONDAY 10th FEBRUARY
Formerly known as The Kings of the One Handed Catchers, which they rejected as too long in favour of the far more sensible WORDS BEGINNING WITH X. These jangle meisters recently wowed the Forum when they played support to David Devant and his Spirit Wife. If you can, get a copy of their new CD 'Your Rocket is my God' EP.Also playing tonight will be BLOFELD (see www.blofeldmusic.com) and East Grinstead punx DICKWEED
The final Stable show of round one on MONDAY 17th
JANUARY consists of four right beauties: RAN.FOR.DAYS, MINOR DEFECT, SHALLOW
THOUGHTS and DECEIVING EVE
In the meantime, here's the Stable Scores on the Door League Table:
|1||Henry Holds His Own||180||26||Half Inch Heroes||97|
|4||At The Deli||152||28||The Bitch Project||94|
|10||Relvis Troll||134||34||Giant Spider||70|
|11||Grapeseed Bandits||130||35||Flying Carnies||63|
|15||Cyrano||123||39||One Above Nothing||59|
|22||AV Out||107||46||One Day Elliott||36|
|23||Weave||106||47||Six Stage Suicide||30|
|24||Harder They Fall||99||47||RoundEyed Dogs||30|
We always like to hear from new contributors, new bands, new people, people who hate swearing, big ones, small ones, some as big as your head.
You can write to us at
The Forum, Fonthill, The Common,
Tunbridge Wells, Kent, TN4 8YU
We have a really lovely website where you can find out all about what's on. That's at
which is a much easier address to remember than the last one, so now you have no excuse. You can also email us, so do that to:
On the website you can book tickets, find out what's coming up, get a map, get a life, dress a virtual Lawrence in ladies underwear, and after all that, you can go on our messageboard and start arguing about exactly which barstool ex-Pistol Glen Matlock parked his pert buttocks on. The address for that is