It's all hotting up in the exciting race to see who will be crowned the next president of the Forum. Reigning uber supreme Jason "Do I look like Simenon in this hat?" Dormon called the election last month, promising to deliver four more years of exciting entertainment for local punters. Defending his record over the last four years, El Dormo said "Ok, look (toothy grin, sincere smile, rub hands together in a way that suggests I mean it) some of you are saying there are problems with rising crimes against music inside the Forum. I can honestly, hands on my heart (sincere smile, knowing wink, slip you a fiver to look the other way) say that real crimes are down in real terms as perpetrated by real musicians, it just depends on which way up you hold the chart and what you mean by real. OK, look, (waggle elbows, do a special vote for me dance, mug for camera, gurn like a criminal) I accept that what you are saying that putting on Rachel Stamp four hundred times may appear to represent an abomination in the eyes of our Lord and the ears of anybody with ears, but I had to do it due to matters of a fiscal nature that we would rather not get into. And in any case, my opponent smells. Vote Me!!" Standing against Mr Dormant, the leader of the opposition Mr Ian "Have you got a blood sample laddio?" Carvell is understood to be basing his election upon the issue of trust. "The thing is" said the creature of the night "people don't believe in Mr Doormat any more. And why? Because he tells lies. He's a liar. His pants are on fire. He's a lying liar. With firey trousers. No, really. I mean it. Look at him. He's lying isn't he? What a liar! Lie lie lie all day long. He's Larry the liar in the famous BBC sitcom 'Mr Liar and his lying house of Lying lie lie lies'. Don't vote for him. Vote for me. I won't lie as much. Have I mentioned that he's a liar yet?". Pressed for a policy statement as to his plans for the Forum in the future, Mr Carve'emup gazed out of the window for a long long long long time and then mumbled some lyrics from a Skrewdriver record. "Give me a glorious thousand year reign and I will really clean this place up" he said with a steely gaze "and I think we all know who I am referring to" (wink wink, nudge nudge, have you seen who's moved in next door?). Running a very distant third in the race, the leader of the wishy washy liberals Mark "Ha ha, what's your weather like?" Davyd was unavailable for comment as he was in the middle of his three year sabbatical from having to do anything unpleasant. His spokesman, a worryingly tall figure dressed as a Tim Burton character in 'The Nightmare before Christmas' and known by the soubriquet 'The Enforcer', said "..errr ...vote for Mr Davyd…………… If you know what's good for you." A number of minor parties are also taking part in the forthcoming election. Mr Marvey Jarvey - Social Communist Trotsky Reformation Party (standing for the re-instatement of the Pop Guns at the earliest opportunity). Mr Kenny Everett - Like, why can't everybody just, like, get along Party (Standing up for your right to sit down). Sir Liam O'Bresnahanrahan - Workers Revolutionary Party (Standing for the right of sound engineers to be given free ear surgery after every Monday night). Herr Max Von Sydow - Independent (Campaigning for less being more, more or less). The electorate is thought to be considering staying at home that day and washing their hair.
Tunbridge Wells' original AND best value for money comedy club is held the first Thursday of every month.
FOUR TOP CLASS ACTS, THE FIRST THURSDAY IN EVERY MONTH, ONLY FIVE POUNDS,
NEW LUXURIOUS TOILET FACILITIES.
Christian Reilly . Zoe Lyons
At the age of 15, Christian Reilly joined a band to get laid. The Boys' Brigade
had different ideas…
As former integral part of the Perrier award-winning show Otis Lee Crenshaw and the Black Liars, with comic/songster Rich Hall, Christian's career has taken him around the world three times. On his way, he received accolades at international festivals and numerous network TV credits in the USA, Australia, New Zealand and Britain.
Now a solo stand-up performer and playing all the major comedy venues in his own right, Christian uses his dynamic guitar and vocal skills to target histrionic rock bands, musical theatre and morose indie musicians. He recently appeared in 'That Was Then This Is Now' (BBC Radio 2 - 1 series) as the musical sidekick to Richard Herring and Emma Kennedy.
"This genuine, trendy, confident comedian has a natural talent for risky jokes, song and quips which you can't help laughing at! If you get the chance to see Reilly live, do so. He is not to be missed!" Funny.co.uk
Winner of the Babycham Funny Woman of the Year 2004, is none other than ZOE
LYONS. 'the best new comic I've seen for a long time' -Time Out . Zoe created
a huge buzz when she launched herself on the comedy circuit last year. She
more than fulfilled expectations, by winning one major newcomer competition,
and reaching finalist in another, this year. Her grounding as an actress gives
her great stage presence and supreme confidence which combined with sharp
writing, produces a highly enjoyable act.
"Her routine was a fireproof parade of quick fire observational gags delivered with utter conviction and unfailing professionalism. The audience didn't really have a chance". Chortle
The Red Shift
We're not a ska band...!!! We are so sick of people calling us ska. A punk/rock band with horns is not a ska band! The London Philharmonic have horns and no one calls them ska, or Rocket from the Crypt. Ska is a very specific rhythm... and we never ever play it, never have and never will. [SPUNGE] are ska, THE SPECIALS are ska, REEL BIG FISH are ska; JESSE JAMES are not.
If you don't know them already Jesse James is a six-piece soul/punk act,
think DEXY'S meets CLASH meets BLINK 182. Let's set the record straight. As
passionately clarified above, Jesse James are not ska, they are a horn driven
blend of rock, punk and soul that fuse together to spark their trademark sound.
This sextet flow on a crest of dynamic guitars and lashing drums that are
worked around the charismatic brass section, which are the main force behind
the bands appeal.
The band was formed in April 2000, through a drunken turn of events including lumps of black hair gel in North London and a mutual love of The Clash and Dexy's Midnight Runners.After 8 months of rehearsals (in between work/school/soap opera watching) Jesse James played their first show at The Underworld in Camden on December 7th, 2000.
the stage-diving performer, is fearlessly physical; a trait which perhaps
first became obvious when he took up the skateboard, aged 10. In fact, it
was thanks to his wild skateboarding moves that friends nicknamed him Chaos.
What's more, it was this pastime that first prompted him to create his own
music: aged 15, the song, No Morals, ' his first-ever stab at songwriting
was written after breaking both arms in a skateboarding accident (Hang on,
how did he do that, is he like Stephen Hawking? - obtuse Ed).
Casey has been in other bands before he formed Amen in 1994. From A + M, when he was 14, to Disorderly Conduct, who released their 'Amen' album in 1986, and hence the band name Amen.
Casey was also in Christian Death for about a year, touring with them as the bass player, having been invited to join the band by Christian Death's guitarist.
Amen have been around for about 11 years now, and they still haven't changed their attitude; being one of hostility and hate-filled lyrics, Casey Chaos giving his all in everything they do. Amen are a band that deserve praise and respect, and yet don't seem to really get it. Some people think they sound the same as every other "Punk/Rock/Metal" band out there..but it's all a matter of opinion.
Their latest album, "Death before Musick", is punkier than their other albums , yet still maintains the heaviness that they've always had. The band line-up has changed , now featuring: Casey Chaos (Vocals), Luke Johnson (Drums), Scott S. Sorry (Bass), Matt Montgomery (Guitars) and Rich Jones.
. Talking Backwards
An evening perfectly timed to help you pass your exams. Staying in and revising
is going to do nothing for you, if you don't know it by now, then quite frankly,
you never will! So take that busy little mind overflowing with useless algebra
down to the Forum and practice your geographical skills to bust some French
baking vocals whilst testing out the flexibility of the school PE kits. (What?
- ageing Ed)
If there is a God, he gave life to FAILSAFE in 2000 and blessed them with some fantastic forever progressing synth'd pop-punk which Deck Cheese records were lucky enough to grab before anyone else did.
Support will come from Tunbridge Wells' Glaucoma who are rumoured to be bouncing back with re-vamped Head Automatica-esqué experimental power-pop material.
Talking backwards if you didn't know already, were created from the dark ashes of the infamously disliked ska-punk band Crab In A Cab and they're back for revenge. Finally, Kent's Rock'n'roll three-some Kobrakai will be celebrating their bassist Chris's 19th birthday so, come down! As always, photos will be online of the evening at www.scars-and-strikes.co.uk
Black Flame Dispute
you haven't heard the noise, then it's time you turned the stereo up. In a
time of mass made boy bands and teeny bopping popstars, UNCLE BRIAN slashed
their way onto the UK music scene with their debut album Barbeque Music on
Moon Ska Records in 2000, without stopping to see the smoke and dust rise
behind them. The industry hasn't quite been the same since.
2003 saw the release of catchy punk rock greatness by this hard-hitting three-piece UK band with the It Just Seems Right EP on 20 Deck Records. It Just Seems Right kicked down the door and spawned the catchy pop punk single.
The EP went on to catch the steady and loving arm of Uncle Brian's current label Golf Records who re-released it in April 2004. But nothing's ever good enough for Uncle Brian and so their hard work saw the EP snapped up and released in Japan by Pyropit Records with a video for the smash hit "Cindy Lou" aired in heavy rotation on MTV Japan. The Uncle Brian fever spread through Japan like wildfire and is catching on to the rest of the world in godspeed.
After their countless tours with renowned acts Simple Plan, Mad Caddies, Bowling For Soup, Reel Big Fish, and Wheatus, and knee buckling shows with The Vandals, OPM and Millencolin, Uncle Brian outdid themselves and released their much anticipated second album All The Gear But No Idea in March 2004 on Golf Records. All The Gear But No Idea breaks all boundaries showcasing the creative and diverse side of the band, with melodic chords and fun rifts for songs like
Uncle Brian will never re-invent the wheel and I think they will be amongst the first to tell you that. But what UB do is create rifftastic songs that bounce off the walls with anthem following anthem. Choruses trade blows with simple but effective guitar riffs and it's all in the name of a good time. You've only got to witness the live roadshow to see that everyone leaves with a big grin on their face.
were formed in 2002 from the cream of Tunbridge Wells bands, Kail, Tipagore
and Extroverted Hermits. The name is taken from a ferret in the film "Star
Ship Troopers", inspired by the French romantic literary hero, Cyrano
de Bergerac. Though oft likened to a cross between Pearl Jam & Coldplay,
I myself subscribe to something that my old Mum used to say to me as she lovingly
dangled me over the balcony of our 10th floor flat; and this I'd like to share
with you. "Comparisons, you lanky fop", she used to say, with a
claypipe dangling from the corner of her mouth, "are like you; odious,
but ultimately make good copy!" (Good, I'll have mine black, no sugar
- Ed) A view obviously shared by a reviewer at www.dripfed.co.uk, and I quote:
"To classify the music as anything but their own would be criminal; there are no comparisons to be drawn. Song after heartbreaking song, bursting with soaring vocals, rendered with harmonies, smooth rhythms and melodies to die for, each building to their own distinctive and majestic crescendo."
Blimey!, not bad for a bunch of TW tossers! Winners of Stable 3 'The Man's Choice'; tonight is the launch of the fruits of their prize, namely their brand spanking EP, SIGNS. This was a collaboration of Joe & Tim's creative song writing talents with some excellent riffs from Karl and unrivalled skinbashing from Matt . The songs were written with a more commercial feel to them than previous Cyrano material, a conscious move to break out from the TW ghetto. Copies of this fine CD will be on sale on the night for £3.00, from then on being available from all good record stores.
Days of Worth
guitarist Cameron Dean and bassist Julia Ruzicka travelled thousands of miles
from the depths of Down-Under to the gritty streets of London in 2001 in search
of streets paved if not with gold then with the sort of emocore punk-rockers
they needed to form a band. Teaming up with Frank Turner and Ben Dawson led
to their nomination in 2003 for 'Best Newcomers' at the Kerrang! Awards.
Million Dead sound like a sort of stripped-down, sped-up At The Drive-In, with a cathartic jazziness to them plus a dash of Hundred Reasons. Million Dead's energetic post-hardcore/punk sound represents everything that used to be good about rock music, not designer haircuts and fuzzy guitars currently being sold to us, but dancing in an awkwardly staccato way whilst screaming about things that matter to you. Subtlety is a talent with this group, you can see them demonstrate this in their witty lyrics and the sight of them shouting about issues that take a little thought to appreciate. Their delicious lyrics are teamed with consummate technical skill and an enviable witticism in tracks like 'Smiling At Strangers on a Train' where tempo-changes and insistent, angry vocals successfully marry Chuck Taylors and safety pins. A must-see act
Old-school and innovation
is united by the Stockyard Stoics from NYC. The four guys learned their craft
in bands like the great MDC, Leftover Crack and F-Minus. They're gonna beat
their mix of Cali-style, second wave Brit punk of the late 80´s added
with political attitude into your minds.
This band grafts ska, reggae and rockabilly rhythms to hardcore punk guitar. Picture The Clash or The Ruts on uppers - then double the dosage! Stockyard Stoics are anchored by a water-tight rhythm section featuring J.P. on drums (Morning Glory, ex-Readymen, ex-Leftover Crack) and Joe Piglet (ex-Rickets) arguably one of the best bassists in punk rock today (Root note alert! - the Fop) . Rounding out the lineup is the twin guitar attack of Brendan (ex-Readymen) and Aaron (the X-Possibles, ex-Redundants).
Rarely, if ever, has a band so concisely depicted the bleak reality of life in urban America. More than just lyrics, this band's songs read like short stories synthesized from the DNA of Philip K. Dick and William Gibson novellas, the liner notes of Dub-reggae albums, and back issues of Profane Existence. Songs about unlawful arrest and the police state, teenage wastelands of the not-so-distant future, sufferation and gun-barrel redemption, and waiting in the Post Office queue on Thursday's pension day; like a riot in slow motion!
Three Children of Fortune
Eric + Hunters Loaf
The Medway, TCOF comprise three schoolmates - Tommy (Vocals), Steve (Bass)
& Lee (Drums) - who specialise in creating a visceral, angry and abrasive
take on British guitar music. Taking their cues from the post-punk of Sonic
Youth, Pavement and Slint they combine primal emotion and perfect melodies
to a devastating effect that belies their youth.
Here's what Organ fanzine has got to say about them:
Anyone who thinks that Part Chimp are loud need to get their lugholes around this lot. That said, the volume doesn't always do them favours. They're no three-chord wonders, there's some gloriously melodic passages, punctuated by devilish time changes and some sublime details. There's still a few rough edges, a stick might go flying, a guitar might get pounded out of tune - but that's part of the attraction, three young lads giving it everything, raw as an Arctic gale and all the more thrilling for it. For the most part, they go at it like the meter's about to run out, urgent and raucous rock that takes its cues from the likes of Slint, and avoids any tired emo cliches. But every now and again they throw a curveball: some unexpected kink in the rhythm, a moment of gentle melody. They do this just enough and with sufficient variety to keep things interesting, they don't allow you to relax, the timing is spot on, and underpinning it all is a razor-sharp sensibility for primal guitar music. They also confound any suspicions that they can't keep the pace or the quality up, they have a set of songs worth listening to until the last bit of feedback expires. Catch them while you can - honestly, its worth the tinnitus.
Also appearing tonight are former Stable winners ERIC, who are the latest act to join unlabel; a foursome who have already been compared to Sonic Youth, Mogwai and Sigur Ros, and had their debut CD, 'Weather for Lighting Matches' released last December. Meanwhile, HUNTERS LOAF is the latest project from ex-UNHOME's Phil Avey. Judging by the photo think Durutti Column, but without the belly laughs!
sees Household Name's Scandinavian favourites DA SKYWALKERS celebrating ten
years of writing and recording kick ass punk rock. Harnessing the power of
punk legends like RANCID and US BOMBS and displaying the Swedish sense of
style and melody as seen in fellow countrymen BOMBSHELL ROCKS, DA SKYWALKERS
new album "Heartache And Scars" draws on these and other influences
like SOCIAL DISTORTION and DROPKICK MURPHYS for their best album so far.
Since 1995 DA SKYWALKERS have blazed a trail through their home country, releasing countless EPs, splits, compilation tracks and their two previous albums for Household Name Records. DA SKYWALKERS debut album "SMALLTOWN SAVIOURS" was recorded in Sweden with Mattias Farm of the band MILLENCOLIN producing. The album was released in February 2002 and the band followed it up by touring the UK with FIVE KNUCKLE, and mainland Europe with equally unruly US anarcho-punks F-MINUS (Hellcat Records).
DA SKYWALKERS then set about recording their next album "END OF A CHAPTER, START OF A NEW" which was also released on Household Name Records in 2003. The album saw the band expanding their brutal street-punk agenda by adding some exceptionally melodic touches of acoustic guitar and sing out loud choruses to the strong working class and anti-racist themes of their music.
Another month's worth of kaleidoscopic smorgasbord of untapped, unsung talent.
You know the score; every Monday three unsigned bands take the Holy Toilet
stage and give it their best for 25 minutes.
Well, Round Two of the Fans' Choice has finished, giving us the Top 6 as voted on the night who will now play in THE FANS' CHOICE GRAND FINAL, on a date to be confirmed. These bands being: Vanishing Point, Dysuria, Jason & the Astronauts, Meadow Road, Propain, Rain Eater.
Meanwhile, Round 2 of The Man's Choice zooms on at a rollicking pace with only three more shows to go. Again, a compilation CD featuring 1 track from each of the 18 bands will be judged by The Man's Choice panel. The top 6 bands wil then go through to THE MAN'S CHOICE GRAND FINAL
The final shows of Round 2 this month feature:
Monday, 2nd - MANTORA . SIMON LEEVES . THE QUIET ONES
Monday, 9th - 9-VOLT . NINETEEN85 . ZUCCHINI
Monday, 16th - DYSURIA . RELIEF . SEVEN STORY DOWN
Entry to these shows is a mere four quid (plus 50p insurance tax), and quite frankly worth every bleedin' penny of anybody's money. Come down and see for yourself the EEC unsigned talent mountain.
In a new occasional and quite frankly crap series of badly doctored photos, and spurious connections. We'd like to point out hitherto unrecognised, uncanny resemblences of Forum staff and punters to those people you might see in the pages of Heat, or TV Quick. Or if you will, celebrities. Kicking off this month is our much loved soundguy, Liam whom as well as having a lush head of hair, is always seen in the vicinity of a (Holy) toilet: and dare I say looks rather like a a 15 year old George Michael. As my Latin tutor used to say, Quad Erat Des Lynam!
(whereby Moanin' Millsey gives his considered opinion on what's Hot and what's Rot)
Stars in their Eyes - Fri 8th April
Slipknot had a point about that 'People=shit' thing. "Come on down and see the idiot right here" and we love to do it don't we? There's nothing we like more than people making spanners of themselves, except perhaps justifying dreadful things in the name of 'entertainment'. Why do the Great British Public devote so much attention and energy on championing the bloody awful? Eastenders. Pop Idol. You've Been Framed. Tabloids. Ant & Dec. 'Reality' TV. The list goes on. Sure, there are great things too, but we have a peculiar passion for the crap things in life, and nothing sums that up better than our fondness for Stars In Their Eyes. There's no 'binge drinking problem' in Britain, it's just proles trying to desensitise and escape from the rancid excreta spurting from their tellies. For years now, a succession of provincial karaoke plebs have ponced in front of us on Saturday nights aping everyone from Stansfield to Springsteen, and people not only seem to care, they actually buy tickets to watch the winning bozo reliving their 5 minutes of fame in local theatres, with worse makeup and no way of editing the dodgy bits. The mind fucking boggles.
Although it's good to see The Forum packed with punters (oh alright, the bands' mates), and this is after all, light-hearted 'fun', it's a little disconcerting that so many can support what is essentially an evening of covers bands, yet so often ignore more original talent. Where were this lot at Left Side Brain? Oh of course, how silly of me - Stars In Their Eyes was on TV...
But with the limited resources available tonight, we've at least got most of the Stars experience in all it's tacky splendour: glittery stars, tinsel and our amiable buxom MC, 9 Volt's Choad as Cat Deeley, enjoying himself in drag just a little too much, so feel free to start rumours as they might be true. And tonight Cat, we're gonna have 10 bands, doing 2 songs each with varying degrees of musical or aesthetic success, starting with a youthful and clean-cut Libertines as one of the few turns tonight remembering to look, not just sound the part. Their Pete & Carl don't have that wasted look of crack chic though, as their well-pressed tunics make them appear like kids dressed up as guards by their mums, but uncannily faithful versions of "Can't Stand Me Now" and "Don't Look Back" do the job ably enough for them not to seem too silly.
Although somebody else maybe nabbed their beloved Muse first, Offlimit's tribute to Green Day is no compromise. Their ardent passion for tunes like 'Warning' borders on the obsessive; honed as close to perfection as the wee scamps dare. But with no way to be anything other than their regular-sized selves visually, a precise, if unexciting performance is quickly overshadowed by less serious but more involving acts that follow. And of course, someone has to make a comic gesture, so if Div & The Divs didn't give us their own painfully unfunny take on Britney Spears then somebody else would probably be making a similar, er, 'ironic statement' like the "I'm fookin' mad, me" bloke you always get at pub karaoke. Sure, not just anyone would clip on blond plaits and attempt a psycho-ska version of "Toxic", but DATD share similar delusions that they're not only entertaining but competent enough to pull it off. The joke wears thinner as they limp through a brassy "Hit Me Baby One More Time", repeatedly fucking the idea up until it becomes a dull one-gag marathon with no punchline.
A random mixture of good ideas done poorly and bad ideas done well should really be the worst that one should expect from a night like this, but allowing an act with no ideas at all just seems baffling. Get The Skinny’s drummer is AWOL, and perhaps when they suggested covering Bob Marley he had good reason, but why do two out of tune, out of time and out of their minds pissheads still go ahead with it? A laugh? Judging by their fellow boozers inflicting a gut-heaving singalong of “No Woman No Cry” on us, it would seem so.
We always like to hear from new contributors, new bands, new
people, people who fucking hate swearing, big ones, small ones, some as big
as your head.Because believe you me, it's a right hard slog making up all
the lies, half-truths and general bollox that we lovingly/laughingly call
You can write to us at
The Forum, Fonthill, The Common,
Tunbridge Wells, Kent, TN4 8YU
Or call the Forum Switchboard line on 08712 777101
We also have a website where you can find out all about what's on, and laugh at the photos of the damp mattressed fainthearts that, *cough* 'work' here. That's at
You can also email us, so do that to:
FORUM STREET TEAM
We're about to launch a major Forum awareness promo campaign involving some fantastic flyers and posters. As such, we are forming a street team to help us spread the word of the old holy toilet. Anybody who wishes to be involved, please email Rebecca at firstname.lastname@example.org for more details
Public Liability Insurance Twatometer
a month by month monitor, just watch that line soar up to £8000!
A sudden spurt, an upturn in the fortunes of the Twatometer this month. OK, we didn't quite achieve the target, having a shortfall of 2.5K, but a sterling effort all round.
Special mentions this month must go to Josh and Dufus for their exceptional contribution, AND a big hurrah to South Way to the World, and all the participating bands who donated their prizes in the Stars in Their Eyes comp.
Thanks fellahs, it's all greatly appreciated.