Sunday, 29 April 2012

WGW Day 4

We woke up early this morning and had a massive breakfast to get us through the day as it looked very cold and wet outside and a trip to the foolsball was on the cards.

We chilled out in the hotel room for a while and I started my duties as Real Gothic FC tweeter and started some banter with my opposite number at The Whitby Gazette! Much hilarity was generated long before the game actually started. I also had to try and stave off a lot of misinformation that the game was cancelled today when it wasn't. It appeared that the assumption was that because it was raining that there would be no game. WRONG!

We donned our warmest clothes and hoodies and umbellas in hand set out into the work to face the elements. It was absolutely tipping it down with rain and there was a strong icy wind cutting across us too. To say the walk to the grounds of Whitby Town FC was unpleasant would be an understatement but we managed it nonetheless.

On our arrival we had a quick drink and a chat with Louise Scousewag. As kick off time approached it became clear that there were very few people there and it was unlikely that there would be a mass influx later. At this point it was decided that the charity raffle would not go ahead. There were some quite expensive prizes on offer and it wouldn't have been good to have raised little money for charity in exchange.

The game was wet and cold. The pitch was sodden and got wetter and wetter as the first half went on until it started to look like a lake. It was so wet that even the ball didn't want to play (thank you Toni for that gem). For once it was a bit of an end to end game and Athletico Gazette failed to capitalise on an empty night and despite a lot of pressure just couldn't get the ball in. There were numerous chips over the crossbar. Real Gothic did manage some good offensive pressure until finally a beautiful kick by captain Graeme McKinnon took the goths to a 1 - 0 advantage. The score was 1 - 0 at half time when it was announced that the win would be given to Real Gothic but the remainder of the match was called off due to an unfit pitch (makes a change from unfit goths!). This was a relief to me as my fingers almost went numb during the first half from the biting cold wind! Congratulations to Real Gothic FC though, it's nice to get a win and hopefully the same can be repeated come November. In the end the event did manage raise £600 for the respective charities that were nominated which was great news.

After the game Toni and staggered back to The Res through more wind and rain. Fortunately they were still doing food so we went and had a bottle of wine and a lovely roast dinner. Have to say it was pretty fantastic and great value for money too.

After refreshment we went back to our room, stripped out of our still damp clothes and hung them up to dry. A cup of tea was then in order and we both crashed out.

Usually we try and do something on the Sunday night at Whitby Goth Weekend, either a band at The Res and/or Nostalgia at Raw but we chose not to tonight. It would have been convenient if The Res still ran bands on Sunday but it appears that they don't any longer so that option was out anyway.

Life has been so busy and stressful in the lead up to this WGW that we decided to take some time out and just chill and relax. WGW has always been about getting away from things and tonight was no different only we stayed in for a change. It was a novelty watching some real TV. Much tea was downed and we enjoyed Caddyshack and an old episode of Cracker.

I received a very nice text from Real Gothic FC player/manager Pablo thanking me for my Twitter commentary during the course of the day and I am delighted to be announce that I'm now "on the team" so to speak and will be resuming my duties once again in November!

It has been a fantastic Whitby Goth Weekend once again. We've had a cracking time and really enjoyed the break. There have been some fantastic bands and some less good ones but it's all part of the experience. We are already booked up our accommodation for November so we'll be back for more fun and games!

Saturday, 28 April 2012

WGW Day 3: The Bands

As is par for the course we got ourselves ready and headed out to The Spa.

There was a much better turn out tonight which was very encouraging to see. Such a relief to see more people there I can tell you!

Another debut for this weekend but what a debut it was. Fantastic upbeat guitar based goth. Really well received and very impressive for a debut. Great songs with some haunting melodies. Great way to start the evening and I can't wait to hear their album.

We've crossed paths before as I'd seen these guys at Destroy The Silence Festival in London. They didn't disappoint this time round either with a really strong set and lots of movement in the crowd. It was a well polished performance that shows how much they are developing as a band. It was nice to see a band like DEO on the stage at Whitby. Ed Grassby of Rhombus seemed to enjoy them!

William Faith and Scary Lady Sarah make a return to Whitby and this time as part of a band and a very post punky goth sound. Probably won't make myself many friends here but in my view they were too high on the bill but I guess they earned the placing due to their help and loyalty to the WGW brand over the years. They do need to work on their stagecraft and delivery more though as there was too much dead space between songs waiting for backing tracks to be triggered. That said the songs they have do show much potential and I'd love to hear them on an album.

I'm sure I wasn't the only person here who saw Die Laughing as the must see act of the weekend.
Once they started there was no stopping them, it was like they'd never been away. The new material sounds fantastic and sits next to the older stuff perfectly. Mike Unwins was a worthy stand in on bass. Choked introduction of the final song and it was nice to hear genuine heartfelt thanks. Ended on Safe Little World (what else?). Welcome back, looking forward to seeing more of Die Laughing!

They just do what it says on the tin. For me their performance completely washed away the sad memory of Ugly Buggs and Jay Aston and friends returned to form with an excellent Gene Loves Jezebel set.Tonight was also a much better show than when they recently support The Mission at Brixton Academy. I have a sneaky feeling there might not be many more GLJ gigs in the future so I am glad I made it to this one.

It was an excellent night of music tonight with some cracking sets with Die Laughing running away with the crown but Red Sun Revival and Dead Eyes Opened both came in close.

WGW Day 3

We had planned to just take it easy and do very little today. The best laid plans and all that.....

After breakfast we had gone back to our room to snuggle and rest when I received a phone call. We had offered lift(s) to Whitby from London and the return journey before we left but hadn't had any takers apart one possible return journey subject to meeting us first. We were supposed to have met Lady Spiderella at Raw on Thursday night but as we had been to tired to attend and had no contact from her we had assumed that she wasn't interested any more. It turned out she was so we had to throw some clothes on and rush down to The Spa to meet her. We had a long chat and agreed that we could take her back to Banbury on our way back on Monday.

While waiting in the foyer of The Spa it was good to see that things looked much busier than they had the day before. There were lots more people milling about including lots of the dressing up brigade. As usual there were lots of very creative outfits which is always lovely to see.

As Toni's Madfish had died a death last night we then hit the Bizarre Bazaar once again in search of new shoes. Toni ended up with a fantastic pair of New Rock ankle boots. It was my lucky day too as I walked away with some lovely New Rock cowboy boots! They'll probably get me shunned by the ubergoth fashion snobs but I don't really care as I love them!

Next stop was the Resurrection Records stall (I told you we'd end up there). We ended up buying six new compilation CDs to give us an introduction to lots of new bands as well as a copy of the new Partly Faithful EP.

After shopping we dropped our bags off at the room and then went down to the bar in The Res. We had lunch and a couple of drinks while waiting to meet Pablo, the player/manager of Real Gothic FC. Meeting went well and we have sorted out a plan of action for my live game updates via Twitter tomorrow.

Once Pablo had ventured off we were then joined by Sean Patrick so continued drinking and had a good old catch up as we'd not seen him for a while.

Social time over we then got down to the important stuff, a raid on the pound shop for sweets and crisps ready for post gig munchies later on! It was then time for a quick nap before getting ready for the entertainment tonight at The Spa!

Friday, 27 April 2012

WGW Day 2: The Bands

Just some minor dressing up tonight as we rushed out to The Spa.

We arrived to find that Last July had gone on early which was a BIG disappointment. They were supposed to start at 21:20 and we arrived at 21:15. To make matters worse there was a huge technical failure which meant that their set was cut short at that point. We only saw one song, having missed 5 or 6 which I was gutted about as they were a band I really wanted to see. The good news was that it was announced that they would be added to the bill of the November 2012 event.

Really good band, guitar based trad goth style. The singer had an amazing voice. She reminded me a lot of Siouxsie. Big credit goes to the guitarist who composed all the songs and played all the instruments on the backing tracks. Well received, atmospheric songs.

Jay (Gene Loves Jezebel) Aston's new troupe. An interesting delivery to say the least. It was a bit like a poor man's Gene Loves Jezebel. There was a promise of something in a lot of the songs that never really appeared. A tad disappointing knowing what Jay can really deliver. There were times when it felt like he was taking the piss (or was pissed) as it seemed more of an indulgence rather than something long term. Maybe it was first gig jitters but they certainly lacked something. A tad random and Toni said that jazz goth doesn't really work! Maybe it was a condition of the GLJ booking that Ugly Buggs were allowed to play but they shouldn't have been this high on the bill for a first gig!

Sadly there were more people on the foyer than there were watching and front of stage was deserted.

It was also a sad indictment of this Friday night at WGW that the only person on the dance floor was a girl who was about 6 or 7. Not sure if it was the economic climate or the many line up changes that kept people away but it was certainly a disappointing turn out compared with past events and even the usually crowded foyer was light on people.

With an atmospheric entrance In The Nursery took control of the stage and the audience and got the night back on track. Wonderful rhythms and haunting melodies steeped with feeling and a dark edge had feet tapping and the crowd swaying nicely. The visual element of drummers made them great to watch. One was standing with toms, snare and cymbals and the other with timps and bass drums. The shared vocals between keyboard/bass player, timp player and main vocalist added lots of twists and variety too. A great band to watch and listen to. A few songs even got frighteningly close to EBM which was great to hear and encouraging for future bookings perhaps? Sorry martin oldgoth but you know it's true LOL! What a fantastic way to end the night!

One major gripe this year is the increased use of lighting behind the band which made taking pictures quite difficult and sometimes the band were just flooded out and hard to see.

Overall though it was a good opening night and we are really looking forward to tomorrow!

WGW Day 2

After an amazingly good sleep Toni and l woke up fully refreshed and raring to go! We started off with a buffet breakfast in the hotel. Toni even got to toast her own gluten free bread! Lots of lovely food and well cooked plus lots of coffee was a great way to start the day.

Suitably stuffed we then strolled the short distance from The Res to the Spa Pavilion.

 We said a quick hello to Bridget Gothtart before we picked up our wristbands.

As is traditional for us (and a lot of other WGW regulars) it was time to hit the Bizarre Bazaar for some retail therapy. It was sad to see that the number of stalls has reduced from past years. I am hoping that this is just a sad reflection of the current economic climate rather than any throwback to any past WGW political fallout.

That said, we still managed to spend lots of money on various new outfits, hats and hair falls so there is still plenty there to spend your money on, not to mention the fabulous 20% discount that Resurrection Records are offering on most things other than new release. I didn't indulge today but I may be back for a browse tomorrow! We also sampled a selection of English Heritage mead as well as cherry wine and ended up buying a few bottles too!

After the shopping we took a gentle stroll back to The Res and retired to our room for a chill (and to drink tea and eat crisps and sweets LOL).

Dinner was at The Res and oh my word! The food was absolutely divine! Really nice and great value for money! We also downed a bottle of wine which set me up very nicely for getting changed and hitting The Spa!

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Thursday, 26 April 2012

WGW Day 1: the travel

Thing didn't go quite as planned this morning. Once we had dropped Gemima off at school we went to Coffee Town for breakfast, then fuelled up The Beast and checked the tyres.

After some hard wardrobe decisions we finally finished packing and then headed out on the road Whitby bound.

It's not often you see one of these out on the road!

Overall it was a good journey albeit VERY wet in places! It's incredible to think we have hosepipe bans with the amount of water falling from the sky. There was so much flooding in fields that it was unreal!

We made one stop off en route for coffee and nibbles and picked up some stuff to eat later on.
Although we didn't indulge we did pause by this and thought of Sam.

There was lots of buzz across the interwebs as we travelled that our destination had turned into CSI: Whitby due to a murder that had happened yesterday and the ongoing investigations by the police.
More details on this tragic event can be found on the Whitby Gazette website here:

As is my wont for noticing and taking photos of weird shit... this was spotted on a set of traffic lights? It is reassuring to know that they are crash friendly!

As we got to the moors it was very foggy! Visibility was down to one bus length which was quite scary considering it was tipping down with rain.

We arrived safe and sound in Whitby at around 18:30. Our accommodation this time round is the newly refurbished Resolution Hotel. The room was lovely and the view spectacular (albeit foggy LOL)

Extravagance then kicked in as we sat in bed eating Caesar salad with chicken, parsnip crisps and drinking tea while we chilled and thought about what we should wear when we go out to RAW later for the S.O.P.H.I.E. fundraising event!

The events of our quite dramatic personal life sadly caught up with us though as our plans to go out ended with us crashing out from sheer exhaustion! On the plus side we'll be recovered and full of energy for the rest of our break!

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