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BLAM May 2007

A word in your ear...

Yet another rip roaring scandal burst like a stream of unwelcome pus onto the faces of Forum punters this week (that's a nice image to start the magazine, wonder why our readership figures keep getting lower and lower? You carry on with this level of arse jokes and pus related humour and soon only Moaning Millsey will be tuning in, and that's just to check his copy for spelling mistakes - Ed) when it was announced that The Forum's plans to photo ID and register every single punter prior to them being allowed to think about buying a ticket would be expanded. "Some people say that I have a megalomaniac complex" said Ubergruppenfuhrer Ian Carvell "but I am calling you from my specially created bunker to put people's minds at ease. In line with other great events like the Glastonbury Festival, demand for Forum tickets now vastly exceeds supply on some nights, unless people find out that Furniture Sound are playing, in which case we can't get rid of them even if we strap £10 notes to each one. We have realised that the only fair way to give everybody a crack at getting their filthy mitts on those all important Exit Ten tickets is if we run a lottery based competition and charge everybody a tenner just to take part, whether or not they are in with a chance of winning." Answering questions from the floor that suggested that this might just be a way to con people out of money, Mr Carvell's right hand man Mr Max Von Sydownyourerockingtheboat said he was appalled and dismayed that people would think that. "I am appalled" he said (Altogether now - Ed) "and what's more I am also distraught (Eh? - Ed) that people would dare to question our motives for this excellent programme that means we will now have an online database of people's DNA, sexual preferences, entertainment interests and dental hygiene record. People who say this is a bit like Big Brother watching you better mind their mouths, as we know where they live and will be taking action they probably won't enjoy very much, unless they have penchant for hospital food, know worraimean?". In other news, well known local Nazi Bryan Ferry has strenuously denied suggestions that he has been involved with the work of musicians. "You only need to hear my latest album to know how terrible these lies are. I have invaded the work of Bob Dylan because his people demanded it" he said. We would like to apologise that this isn't technically a snidey piece of satire aimed at local musicians or our own staff, but it is funny, so we thought we would bung it in at the end.

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, Tunbridge Wells, Kent TN4 8YU

But frankly, I wouldn't bother because our lawyers, Shyster, Rippemhoff & Felch are the fastest legal minds in Cricklewood.
Those of who have read a number of the above masterpieces of literary invention (otherwise known as the "oo fuck, we've done the mag, but what about the editorial" bit) will by now have noticed a certain amount of repetition creeping into the text. This problem has been addressed by the management, who wish to announce that if you seriously spend your time reading this magazine saying "I am sure they have used that joke before, and technically speaking, Arnold isn't the guitarists real name, so I don't know why they have printed that" then you're also the sort of sad twisted individual who probably also reads these apologies just to get a vague twitch in the trouser department when we use the words fanny batter. So we're not sorry at all and you can knob off the lot of yer.

Comedy Forum

Thursday 3rd

Tunbridge Wells' original AND best value for money comedy club is held the first Thursday of every month.

For the past 5 years, on the first Thursday of every month, the Forum has played host tofour top acts from the stand-up comedy circuit. Acts that have gone on to become staples of Channel 4 (and Ceebeebies!) include; JIMMY CARR, ROB ROUSE, ROB DEERING, NINA CONTI, ELECTRIC (Big Cook, Little Cook) FORECAST and MARCUS BRIGSTOCKE. Here's your chance to see the stars of comedy before they start presenting rubbish 'Top 100 Drain Hole Covers in Southborough' stylee programmes.

"Quite simply, the finest alternative comedian there is" Ian Cognito
"Consistently funny…." The Independent
"Wonderful, upfront, hilarious…'" Evening Standard
Comedian, actor, writer and presenter, COLE PARKER exploded onto the comedy circuit in 2000, to great critical acclaim. In the same year he was nominated the UK's best new comedian. Cole now regularly plays the premier comedy clubs throughout the UK & overseas and has earned an enviable reputation as a professional, highly original, first-rate comic and compere. His intelligent - occasionally dark material, is delivered with generous spoonfuls of charm and he can relate to any audience.

A knowledgeable and passionate music fan, Cole has hosted 'Jersey LIVE!' for four years since its inception in 2003 - performing alongside the cream of the British and international A -list music industry. Having a massive bank of material and being able to relate to a wide demographic has made Cole a popular and regular festival fixture. He has compered the Reading festival for an unprecedented three years running and also played the Glastonbury, Leeds, Edinburgh, Bugjam and Big Chill festivals.

Josh is an ex-public schoolboy, raised as a Buddhist who then trained as a Rabbi before being kicked off the programme for being caught with a naked (non-Jewish) girl, so perhaps it was inevitable that he would go on to become a stand-up comedian.
Already a familiar face on the comedy circuit, Josh performs regularly in London at clubs such as Up the Creek, Banana Cabaret, Comedy Store, Comedy Café, Jongleurs, Bearcat, Red Rose and King's Head and around the UK for the likes of Off the Kerb, Comedy Clubs Ltd, The Stand, Just the Tonic, Clockwork Comedy, Workafrolics and the Union of Jewish Students, proving himself to be a massive hit at comedy clubs, universities and private functions alike.
In 2003 Josh made his first trip to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival where he spent a month performing on a comedy bus to sell-out audiences. Josh proved to be such a hit he was asked back again in 2004. 2004 ended with Josh performing a series of gigs around Australia.
Since then Josh has been gigging all over the UK, he has also been invited to perform a series of gigs in Germany where he proved to be a massive hit. Josh has also recently been filmed for Paramount Comedy's 'World Stands Up', showcasing some of the best stand-up comedians from around the world

"Challenging, intelligent wit… as funny as it is fascinating" CHORTLE

Also appearing tonight will be your host for the evening JAMES NOKISE and LOU SANDERS

Friday 4th

goFASTER>> were formed in the summer of 2006 to write pop songs about rubbish jobs, daytime television and STD's. Here some of the things people have said about them:

"the most exciting new band to emerge from Liverpool in 2006"
- Gigwise.com
"enough musicianship and wit to excite even well-exercised lugholes. We predict goFASTER>> will goFAR>>"
- Fly Magazine

"one of the best, spine-chillingly brilliant pop bands we've had the pleasure of hearing in ages"
- Neu Magazine

Brian Jacket Letdown
Saturday 5th

The Brian Jacket Letdown were formed in late 2004 by Will Harper, Tom Phillips and Dan Radclyffe. The band came from the songwriting/recording studio partnership of Will (Guitars, Vocals) and Tom (Keyboards), which evolved into a rock band with the addition of Dan (Bass/Drums). Before they had even had their first rehearsal they recorded what would become their mini-album "Hooves", a set of folky numbers which instantly came to the attention of London indie label Genepool Records, eventually to be released in May 2006.
The band went into the rehearsal studio to start piecing together their live set, and added the talents of Fernando Donaire (Percussion), a Brazilian cohort of Dan's, and worked with a succession of kit drummers. Today the line-up consists of Mike Orski on drums and Remi Stickland on percussion and electronics, including a custom-made darth-vader shaped theremin.
The band played their first gig in July 2005 at The Enterprise in Camden. They have played all over the UK, winning over tricky crowds with their brand of ramshackle folk-rock. The band are well versed in studio trickery (recording and mixing all their material themselves) have their new sing "Eat Your Friends" available now on 7" vinyl, or if you're young, download!

Here's what nice guy FRANK TURNER has to say for himself: "I was originall in a punk band called MILLION DEAD. We were around for four years, from 2001-2005, and in that time we released 2 albums to 'critical acclaim' and 'underground success' (i.e. we weren't exactly U2). Nevertheless, we made a lot of friends and played a lot of shows, wrote a lot of songs and learnt an awful lot about playing music and making a living out of it. In the end we decided it would be best to part ways before we fell out and while we still had a chance of being a wicked underground band that no one liked at the time a decade hence (see: Slint).

Whilst in Million Dead, I'd started to do some shows on my own - sometimes out of necessity, say for a radio session - and started rediscovering a lot of the music I grew up with, like the Counting Crows, Johnny Cash, Weezer and so on, as well as getting more and more into my country and folk. I started out with folky versions of MD songs and graduated to my own compositions (often bits and pieces that were a little too light for the band). When the 'Deadz came to an end, it seemed like the logical thing to do to try my hand at playing these songs more publicly and more concertedly than before. I also didn't want to stop touring, so I kept going.

Thus the 'neverending tour of everywhere' started in October 2005, and hasn't really stopped since. I've shared stages with everyone from Getcape via Gabby Young to The Automatic, clocking up nearly 200 shows thusfar, much of it done travelling on the train and sleeping on the floor.

The next chapter began on January 15th 2007, when my debut album was released in the UK. Entitled "Sleep Is For The Week", it features 13 tracks of pure sex and has been favourably received by everyone from Drownedinsound to The Sun (which covers pretty much the entire world population). I'll be touring it with a backing band (made up of people from Oxford's Dive Dive) in the first two months of the year, before heading out to the States with Jonah, and then returning for more European bothering. You have been warned.

The Dykeenies
Saturday 12th

The Dykeenies are a pop band, formed in mid-2005 in Cumbernauld, Scotland. The band comprises brothers Alan Henderson (guitar), Andrew Henderson (bass) and Brian Henderson (synths/vox), and childhood friends Steven Ramsay (guitar) and John Kerr (drums). The band took their name from the '80s-era George Lucas/Ron Howard film Willow (although the film script spells the word "daikinis").
They played their first gig at the ABC2 in Glasgow in late 2005, which was a sell-out show. In January 2006, they were named as the first Your Sound winners - a scheme run by Glasgow music venue King Tut's Wah Wah Hut to support local talent. They later signed to King Tut's Recordings, the label on which they released their debut single 'New Ideas/Will It Happen Tonight' in July 2006.
Support slots with Mystery Jets, Maxïmo Park and The Fratellis helped them build a strong local following, and in September 2006 the band signed to Lavolta Records. The band had already caught the attention of British music magazine NME, who then invited The Dykeenies to play on their NME Rock'n'Roll Riot Tour alongside The Fratellis, The Maccabees and The Horrors.

Wednesday 16th

Far too many emerging British metal bands rely on once-entertaining clichés, which when sloppily assembled resemble some sort of hideous, rotting Frankenstein-like monster. These bands stumble around wearily, moaning and impressing no-one, before the fragile sum of their parts comically collapses into a quivering, twitching mass.
ETERNAL LORD are a different beast altogether - sleek, sophisticated and ready to destroy your ears.
Consisting of: Chris - Guitar, Shaun - Guitar, Ed - Vocals, Stu - Drums and
Johnson - Bass
Formed in late 2005 Eternal Lord was created to realise the musical vision of ex- The Hunt For Ida Wave (TDON Records) members Chris, Samuel, Shaun and ex-Burning Skies (Life Force Records) member Stuart McKay. With the recruitment of bassist Johnson the line up was complete.
The band hit the studio to just write and rehearse tracks for a demo they wanted to put out. Within a month that idea all changed. In January 2006, a live recording of a track of a practise room session was leaked onto the internet with feverish response. Ever the barometer of underground stirrings, Thirty Days Of Night Records (Bring Me The Horizon, Abigail Williams, Send More Paramedics) added Eternal Lord to their roster in January 2006. The band then stepped up a gear to write and record an EP release for them.
With all members fully devoting themselves to pursuing their musical ambitions and with none of them working a day job the band carried on the relentless touring schedule they had done with previous bands. It seems to have paid off, with numerous tours already under there belt this year, and with many more lined up, the band are set to tour and promote the release of the EP for the rest of the year.

Martin Turner's WISHBONE ASH
T hursday 17th

2005 marked the long awaited and much anticipated return to the live stage of Martin Turner – the definitive voice, creative force and founding member of British rock legends Wishbone Ash – with an exciting new band line-up. The February 2006 concert tour AN EVENING of CLASSIC WISHBONE ASH MUSIC celebrated the 35th anniversary of the formation of Wishbone Ash and featured music from most of the band's definitive album releases - classics of the rock era such as Argus, Pilgrimage, Wishbone Four, There's The Rub, New England and Just Testing. This select series of shows clearly pleased the Wishbone Ash fanbase, who embraced the faithful reproduction of the trademark twin guitar Wishbone Ash sound.

Exit Ten
Friday 18th

"…water-tight riffage" Kerrang

"This is the most exciting British metal band of 2006" - Radio 1 Rock Show

"A slick and deadly metal band is about to make its presence known in your life" Rocksound

"With an abundance of metal riffs and clean soaring vocals, Exit Ten have the potential to go far." Big Cheese

"Making all the right waves…with their heavy but intricate metal" Drowned in Sound

Dedication will prevail. Reading-based band Exit Ten, are a prime example of a talent that is yet to be truly appreciated. A powerful live entity, they execute a potent mix of metal and hardcore with deft time signatures and epic melodic vocals that imprint themselves on your memory. With influences that range from Emperor, In Flames and Dimmu Borgir right through to Radiohead and Jeff Buckley, they encapsulate a rich tapestry of sounds whilst making their own distinctive mark.


unlabel present:

Eiger + Headquarters + Furniture Sound + Deadboy Racer + More acts t.b.a.

Saturday 19th

£6. Doors: 7:00pm.
see www.unlabel.net for details

The Teenagers
Friday 25th

Here's what those nice people at The Grauniad have to say about bonkers sexy mére fuckers THE TEENAGERS

"Hometown: From Paris, now based in London.
The line-up: Michael Szpiner (bass), Dorian Dumont (guitar, synth), Quentin Delafon (vocals).

Apparently, the Teenagers, three French non-teens with lots of black hair and Morrissey specs, are obsessed with adolescence, with late-night walks (they've got a track called Sunset Beach), holding hands and snogging in cinemas. Which is all very romantic and platonic. But then they go and add pervy male voiceovers (and simpering female coos) to their lo-fi drone-pop that together sound like a rap-paedo trying to coax a sylph-like nymph (is there any other kind?) into his car, plus they swear like a grande sweary thing all over their music.
So who are these sardonic Parisian sleazoids with the Velvets-ish simple melodies and arch songtitles such as Starlett Johansson, who've been hailed the saviours of French indie? Dorian was into experimental left-field projects and Michael was involved in Paris's hardcore scene while Quentin moved to London to pursue a fashion career and hang out at deathlessly cool nightspots like Boombox and Trailer Trash. The band was conceived during Christmas 2005 when the trio decided to make a fake MySpace page for a fictional band. They posted lyrics on the site as a response to the messages they got from the page's visitors, the first from a girl called Nicole - hence the song Fuck Nicole. Before long the lyrics became actual songs, and their page got international attention. By autumn 2006 they had over 10,000 MySpace "friends", a deal with Merok, the label that launched Klaxons, and commissions to remix New Young Pony Club, Au Revoir Simone and the Black Ghosts.
"They sound like the Velvets doing the soundtrack to a porno film with Vanessa Paradis on guest vocals."

Mr. Mills' Monthly Moan

MUMM RA - Friday 13th April '07

"Not scared? Not scared? You should be fucking terrified!" screams The Pistolas frontman Simon Buller as he flails around the stage shrieking about dinosaurs over cacophonous gutterpunk, as if a real one was hanging off him with it's jaws clamped around his tackle, rapping, spitting, snarling and shrieking in unholy rage. Yep, it's the eyes, as it so often is; the cold steely glare of an unpredictable maniac whom you have no choice but to uncomfortably submit to, so if he tells you to be scared, be scared for fuck's sake and he might just leave you alone and piss off back to Norfolk with all the other wierdos. Maybe it's the cider or something, but the guy's not all there. Besides, if you're not even a little unnerved and excited by the sheer power of these arty post-Bloc Party oiks with atrocious haircuts, or tantalised by the scent of sweaty leather and scuffed guitars as the sound of Hot Hot Heat buttfucking The Hives while Dogs Die in Hot Cars look on masturbating furiously blasts into your ears, then frankly, I pity your personal life.
The Pistolas quickfire barrage of demented electropunk din and bonkers garage antics is a vivid, unruly and grin-inducing thing to behold. Damn fine tunes too, which they flail loosely around then snap together with a spine-shattering clunk. Trust me, dance in time to this, or copy those throat-shredding falsetto yelps and you'll end up hurting yourself, so maybe they should carry a health warning. Go see.
Youngplan are the poor sensible brethren in comparison and nowhere near as good. These tender young shavers have had a good rummage around the garages of The Rakes and other assorted post-Strokes misfits, hastily assembling a generic mish mash of ineptitude robed as attitude. Just another City Sunsets or Stowaway Sterling if you want a local comparison, and despite tunes like "Endeavour" and "Little Things" having a goodly portion of snot-gobbling Mystery Jets bravado to go with their poppy bluster, for the most part the Hastings quartet are duller than a tax seminar, but that's the danger when you have a civil servant as a frontman I suppose.
They've played here once since, but more seasoned readers might recall an evening about 3 years ago, when Mumm Ra made arses of themselves by whinging at The Forum onstage and having hissy fits about petrol expenses. Phew! Rock 'n' roll, eh? Well Generalissimo 2M got a bee in his Andalusian beach bonnet during the subsequent online fracas and I seem to recall something about them having "as much chance of making it as a gnat in a supernova", while the Bexhill boys fumed, raged and swore never to return. Ho hum, don't y'just sense the tiniest little tickle of discomfort in the air? No? Just me then. Least said soonest mended, and all that.
Mind you, these days they're as different to the sitar-twanging, tea-swilling, wobbly hippies of old that used to horrify their audiences and embarrass their mates on Stable nights, as Tony Blair is to Tony Soprano; so spiritually, there's been a tax to pay for that bluff, down-to-earth smugness. The price of their success has been the abandonment of that old wackiness and self-indulgent fun, which was what used to make Mumm Ra so bloody brilliant at being shit. A bargain really, as it was all rather ghastly thinking back on it now, but consequently, they now sound like, well, everyone else.
If, like me, you're a bit old and sentimental at bottom, then you might begrudgingly admit that it's a shame however necessary it became, because although all that curry-house clatter was a load of old wank, it was great fun at the time and a certain fondness remains. It would have been quite a lark if Mumm Ra had dared to make it with a sitar in tow, but c'mon, this is business.
I might be fancifully inaccurate, but it's mildly amusing to imagine the old sitar player sitting in a pub somewhere now, damning their eyes and grumbling into his beer about cruel twists of fate, while they sit backstage ordering flunkeys about (or maybe Andy), loving being nearly famous (Noo's so happy about that he wears it on his shirt) and having their opinions on everything from the week's singles to favourite colours bandied about from NME to Newsroom South East. Although whom would take comfort in the fact that of the 21 gigs they've played here before, only now do they have an audience that doesn't wince, is probably best left undecided.
So, with hatchets long-buried they're back where they misspent their youth, for a last blast before things get silly and we see Noo in the papers joining 'cool' lists, fucking supermodels and catching Columbian flu with the celeb glitterati (I'm laying a tenner at the bookies that a member of Mumm Ra will be in the Priory within 18 months, and provided I live that long, I'm gonna get pissed as a judge with my winnings). Though only a small percentage of tonight's packed sauna truly remembers those times and the rest only know the singles, Mumm Ra at least feel a distinct affection for the old Holy Shitter and it shows. It's a homecoming for a Stable band done good, so feeling among friends, they hang just a little looser than usual and we're curiously honoured by deviations from their current set such as the long-absent "Starlight" and the even rustier "Temple", which was a disaster two years ago and is still as shabby as my undies, plus a brief gentle acoustic ballad first aired on this spot in 2005 (apparently). See? They DO like us after all.
For in this place, Mumm Ra have nothing to prove, nobody to impress, as everybody's genuinely pleased as punch with their success, yet they must accept the possibility that the days of the toilet circuit are behind them, which is a bit like saying farewell to an old companion. Though they prove tonight by virtue of catchy new single "She's Got You High", the funked-up barbarism of "Cute As" and the frankly annoying "What Would Steve Do?" that they're gonna be responsible for many a foot-tapping moment of immaculate trippy indie pop to come, there's genuine playful affection coming not just from Mumm Ra but towards them, and it's even a little touching in a sickeningly sugary way.
The thing is, they've always been a good band even if they have behaved like plonkers occasionally, and you can't help but like 'em. They make swaying, sweeping, glorious pop noise that grinds and bounces with rude exuberance when they're not making cocks of themselves, just like they always have. It's just that they worked fucking hard to get there and it's a helluva lot better quality now as a result, even if it IS less distinctive than it was, so whatever success fate brings, it's strangely comforting that they've truly earned it.
Lucky bastards.

Our eager, hyperactive, willing to please, forelock-tugging, cap-doffing, can-do, nothing's-too-much trouble, highly trained, elite, ex-SAS and Girl Guides, crack squad of volunteers are waiting like coiled springs, with Sanatogen coursing through their veins, bouncing off the walls for you, and only you !

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.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 BLAM. So If you've recently been moved to tears by the sight of a '74 Rickenbacker 4001, plugged through a Big Muff, whilst being lovingly caressed by a young gunslinger who knows his middle eights from a 'truckers gear shift' then please get in touch. Preferably with a local drugs helpline, in the meantime do not operate any heavy machinery.

You can write to us at:
The Forum, Fonthill, The Common,
Tunbridge Wells, Kent, TN4 8YU
Or call the Information 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 'work' here. That's at
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, identify which ne'er-do-wells have trodden the boards at the ol' shitter, check out our interactive gaming section, or go on our messageboard and start arguing whether we include too many Appalachian Nose-Flute nights in our gig programming. In fact, we beseech, nay implore you to do any of the above which would make a change from downloading hardcore 'chicks with dicks' jpgs as you'd normally do.
Please note that as well as being able to reserve tickets for all Forum shows online, tickets can be purchased from
Criminal Records, 6 Goods Station Road, Tunbridge Wells 01892 511776
and are also now available on TICKETWEB www.ticketweb.co.uk

Coming soon...

4ft FINGERS - Saturday 2nd June
THE WOMBATS - Sunday 3rd June
COMEDY FORUM - Thursday 7th June
KILL KENADA - Friday 8th June
ANTI NOWHERE LEAGUE - Saturday 9th June
I WAS A CUB SCOUT - Friday 29th June

Lifted (with permission) from the May edition of BLAM! - All queries regarding libel actions should be directed to them