That's it for another year... Tuesday FNF and final thoughts from CA.
Well, where else to end the night - and the longest weekend of the year - than at FictionNonFiction? It is actually Tuesday, after all. And more to the point it's Halloween - and in Tiger Lounge it's always Halloween to a certain extent. It's pretty empty when we get in there, perhaps everyone's just all gigged out. There's a couple of bands to go though...
This Is Pop are from Paris and the trio, known only as M, S and L, comprise two boys and a girl and a cheap keyboard and guitar, and play gloriously dirty electro-punk that sounds like the Rezillos on low-grade speed. Singer L, exuding rather more typically Parisian glamour than her generally trashier looking British counterparts in this genre, jumps up and down on the spot a lot and sings and shouts like Karen O's cheekier little sister in what might be a mixture of French and English although its all rather hard to tell. Their enthusiasm doesn't let up despite the best efforts of their rather stroppy equipment as they deliver pacy, energetic two minute bursts of fuzzy bleeps and guitars, as well as a track where one of the lads takes over lead vocal which sounds like Kraftwerk covering Spacemen 3 in an underpass. That's a good thing, by the way.
And this is my In The City. Not the canape munchers - all probably well on their way home by now, fudging their expenses forms in First Class - but watching a band you'd never heard of until two minutes ago who have travelled from another country to play to 20 people in a slightly seedy cellar just because they're there.
So as the clock strikes midnight (well, over the road in the Town Hall somewhere) pumpkin lanterns are lit, and surveying the largely black-clad stragglers in here it's hard to tell who's dressed up for Halloween and who's just, well, you know... Black Fiction crank up some old-school Crampsy B-movie rockabilly punk thrash carried along at a brain-melting pace by drummer Tim O'Sullivan, who I'm sure in some countries would be classed as a weapon of mass destruction. They're blisteringly loud, good classic rock'n'roll fun - and as far removed from the big money chasing world of corporate ITC as you can get.
It seems weeks, rather than four days and five hours, since Decoration opened the ITC batting as the first band on V-Man's Friday curtain-raiser session. My camera batteries have just about gone and my brain's turned to soup. I have seen 54 acts at 16 separate gigs in 12 different venues. What with the rest of the MM crew I'm sure we'll have topped a hundred. Not bad going for a bunch of enthusiasts who don't even do this for a living. I owe lots of apologies to bands I just couldn't fit in; I'll be catching up with Starfighter Pilot tonight at Night & Day as life starts to return to some sort of normality; to other local favourites such as The Amber Club, The Children, iDresden, Duty Now, The Ending Of, Kni9hts and doubtless many more I can only say I'm sure I'll see you soon enough. For those we did catch, over the next week or so we'll endeavour to get them posted up onto the main ManchesterMusic site as well as put together some sort of highlights review; and there's the small matter of the enormous pile of demo CDs people have been stuffing in our pockets along the way. We'll try and review them all, but this could take a bit longer.
In the meantime, enjoy the photos. http://s12.photobucket.com/albums/a215/MMinthecity/