Ray's Gigs

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Sunday 30 April 2023.

Sunday 30 April 2023. My friend London based French singer ANNE PIGALLE has brought out a short film 16 mins film that is based around the history of Soho....The Soho Connection....check it out on YouTube. Did you know that Soho had 186 sex shops in the 1970s/ 1980s. The area was full of glamour, sleaze, gangsters, corruption etc....and now ???? ------------------------------ ------------------------------ Saturday 29 April 2023. VERDENA live at Shepherds Bush Empire. Italian rock band who have released several albums via Universal Music play a London show. -------- Levels 2 and 3 are closed , so maybe 600 or 700 folks are here tonight. No surprise that the crowd is well over 90% Italian. HUSKY LOOPS arrived on stage at 8pm for their 30 mins set. Husky Loops are an Italian band, who are now based in London. A couple of years ago they made NME Band Of The Week You Should Know. A trio playing some decent tunes. VERDENA arrived on stage at 9pm for their 75 mins set. The Italian four piece band included a female on bass. What appealed to me in advance is the band have been called "The Italian Nirvana". Most of their songs did have that loose grunge feel to them , including some feedback etc. They sounded interesting enough, but the vocals were far too muffled and not clear at all. Incredibly , by the end of the the show, i still could not tell what percentage of songs were in Italian or English. I asked a couple of girls , and they said "Lyrics were all in Italian". Like i said earlier "interesting enough show". --------------------------------- --------------------------------- Friday 28 April 2023. FLAMING LIPS live at Hammersmith Apollo. At this sold out show , they will be playing their classic album 'Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots'. This is the tenth studio album by American rock band the Flaming Lips, released on July 16, 2002, by Warner Bros. Records. The album saw the band pursue a more electronic direction than previous efforts, incorporating acoustic guitars and rhythms influenced by hip hop and top 40 music. The album was well-received critically and commercially, helping the band break into popularity, and was adapted into a musical in 2012.In 2022, the band announced a 20th anniversary box set version of the album and that they would perform the album in full in 2023. I have seen them several times before, with the first time in 1999 at The Forum ,London, and the most recent time a visually stunning show at The Forum, London in 2022. --------- The venue is totally rammed sold out, by the time Flaming Lips come on stage. Their live reputation means they can easily sell gig tickets, even without any recent chart success. They play a superb show for 2 hours 10 mins , over two sets of 65 mins each. Like The Forum show last year ,it is a total colourful visual treat from start to finish. The massive screen behind the band, show pyschedelic images and song lyrics. Singer Wayne Coyne holds court centre stage , like an eccentric musical conductor. He sings the first three songs from inside a huge see-through balloon. He is firing confetti cannons from between the thighs of four 20-foot high inflatable pink robots. The multi-coloured lasers and strobe lighting kick in , and all this in the first 15 mins. All the previous stage gimmicks are used off and on throughout the show. The audience are staring at the stage thinking "What will happen next ?". Near the end of the first set we have an inflatable rainbow blown up over the band's heads. At the start of the second set, a dozen huge balloons are pushed out into the crowd. Wayne Coyne dons a superhero costume. All their best tracks were played and during the encore more balloons came out with the words ' FUCK YEAH LONDON' , which were later on thrown out into the crowd. Flaming Lips really are a band that goes well above the usual live gig experience. Certainly will be one of the best gigs of the year for sure....just excellent. Full FLAMING LIPS setlist played tonight... SET ONE - YOSHIMI BATTLES THE PINK ROBOTS album in full Fight Test One More Robot/Sympathy 3000-21 Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots, Pt. 1 Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots, Pt. 2 In the Morning of the Magicians Ego Tripping at the Gates of Hell Are You a Hypnotist?? It's Summertime Do You Realize?? All We Have Is Now Approaching Pavonis Mons by Balloon (Utopia Planitia) SET TWO She Don't Use Jelly Silver Trembling Hands How?? Will You Return / When You Come Down Dinosaurs on the Mountain Borderline (Madonna cover) Pompeii Am Götterdämmerung Encore : Sagittarius Silver Announcement Feeling Yourself Disintegrate A Spoonful Weighs a Ton Race for the Prize