Tuesday, 23 December 2014

IQ at The O2 Academy 2014 and Oh So Much More!

IQ AT THE O2 ACADEMY ISLINGTON 2014 (And quite a lot more besides!)

Well, it had to be, the last gig of the year and a meet up with old friends in London to enjoy a festive ale or two, or three, or four, or more!

If you don't know bout IQ the I strongly urge you to go and find out, go and listen, there is plenty of excellent material available on Youtube and Spotify etc. and go buy an album or two, there are plenty to choose from their back catalogue going back to 1981. For a band that have never enjoyed the commercial success they deserve, unlike the likes of Yes and Genesis, IQ have built up a solid and loyal fan base worldwide and especially in the UK and this year released what many consider to be their best album to date, The Road of Bones, not only is it a magnificent album, the gig was awesome as they played a wonderful selection from their back catalogue and, as one fan put it, "When it comes to live prog music there's IQ then there's the rest".

IQ 2014

Was this really a Fellowship event?
Well that’s the way it was always meant
But with no Kevin available and poor Peter crocked
It was just Chris and Grant from the official FOTS
But of course along with added extras, Alex and Paul
But in a way I suppose Metal Sausage says it all
Alex in his “Momentary Lapse of Seasoning” ‘T’
And Grant in his “I’ve been Rogered” you see
One could rightly say that In this day and age
It was indeed a gathering of the Fellowship of the Sausage!

Mr. A W-S, loyal Lifesigns, IQ and Metal Sausage fan!

We’d arranged to meet at The Euston Tap pub at three
That’s Chris, Alex, Paul and me
Which we did and there we tried some damn fine splendid ales
And as you know, with us, common sense never prevails
For the Cider Tap was also open just across the road
So that too was duly visited, well we just and to go
Now while Alex can drink beer as it were water
Cider is a drink of a very different order
And I think it’s fair to say
after that his photo journalism of the day
Took some very unusual and interesting turns!

The Euston Tap by night

Negotiating the underground was ever such fun
Another adventure for everyone
Why are there so many Northern lines, isn’t one enough?
Never mind, I suppose without too much fuss
We found our way to the right one for the Angel, Islington
And I suppose for once it just had to be done
The Angel itself, which is now a Weatherspoon’s
Which is worth knowing if you’re going there soon
But we had to be in Weatherspoon’s around six
Are you confused yet?
Let me explain, it’s quite simple my pet

Talking of Metal Sausage, your truly and Mr F negotiate the underground

We had a possibility of meeting up with others at The Glassworks
Which is also a Weatherspoon’s, now you see how it works
It is very close to the O2 Academy
Which whereupon eventually is where had to be
And anyway by now we all needed to eat
So various delights were ordered, our tasty treat
Apparently, the venue, the doors opened at six thirty
Which was somewhat extremely early
Especially as the band weren’t on till eight
Which If we’d gone in then would have been a long wait

We saw Jon Patrick
We saw Robin Smith
We saw Thea Sigma
We’ll she couldn’t be missed
She looked so lovely in her Christmas attire
She set Chris’s heart a flutter and mine on fire
We saw ‘Barry Prog-Shorts’ suitably dressed
In this winter weather I must say I’m impressed!

IQ off to a storming start

IQ took to the stage and played a selection
From their vast back catalogue’s supreme collection
A career spanning now more than thirty years
It was quite exquisite, literally music to our ears
As Chris said (& gesticulated) “When IQ play at their very best
They are way up here, down here is the rest”

IQ Encore with added hats and wings!

I think I can say without fear of contradiction
This night was the best that I’d ever seen them
And I have to admit that for about the third time this year
Once again music made me shed the odd tear
Enough of that
As is always the case right after the show
It was time for us to move, it was time to go
Back to Kings Cross, St. Pancras to say our goodbyes
To catch northbound trains on different lines
Another splendid evening all dusted and done
Another great adventure of Fellowship fun
And the last of 2014
What a year this one has been!

Grant Meaby
December 2014

Well, what a year 2014 has been, so many great gigs, some splendid festivals, many good friends shared some real quality times and now Christmas is almost upon us so all that remains for me to say is have a very happy Christmas or Yuletide if you don't celebrate Christmas, or whatever you do celebrate may it celebrate peace.
See you in 2015.
Grant - December 2014

Sunday, 14 December 2014


Well, here we are, December and Christmas is looming large and approaching faster than anyone cal tell, so without further ado......................................................................................................

Friday the 12th of December it was my work Christmas meal out at lunchtime, which, under normal circumstances would see me heading off home afterwards in a 'merry' state and most probably falling asleep on the sofa, but not this particular Friday, oh no, for after the meal (& lashings of very fine ale) I was heading straight of to London with those fine Fellowship gentlemen for the Touchstone Christmas Party, supported by another great band, Symphony of Pain, at The Borderline.

Despite copious amounts of ale I manage to negotiate the escalator without incident!
So, why the title Ferror Rochers and Christmas hats, read on and maybe you'll find out why!

Friday the 12th of December
And the Fellowship are on the move again
A late afternoon meet for a London bound train
Two of the party are already somewhat merry
Yuletide beers not Christmas sherry

Mr. C and THE Christmas hat!
On the train a Christmas hat appears
Cover your ears
Wearing it induces the singing of carols
Such a lovely sound
Especially on the underground
As the train takes its Fellowship load
To spew them out at Tottenham Court Road
Soon to arrive in Wetherspoons
And although we’re in no hurry
Those who have not yet eaten
Indulge in a hot madras curry
We meet up with Roger, John and Stacy
The curries were rather tasty
And for a while we stay here
Enjoying another beer
Before dropping into the Crobar
For substitute JD’s, yes please
Until it’s time for the Borderline

More Christmas hats appear
In fact they’re everywhere
Tonight is the Touchstone Christmas party
And that’s what we’re here to do, to celebrate
Armed with Ferro Rochers for Kim
More than enough to fill a plate!

Symphony of Pain
Symphony of Pain open the proceedings
Kevin gets to be ‘The Bride’
Love lies bleeding
Peter has disappeared into the crowd
Chris is down the front with Roger where it’s loud
I hide
S o P put on a great show it must be said
We all sang along to “For now I’m dead”

The Borderline has now filled up somewhat
A sea of Christmas hats in the crowd
Touchstone take to the stage
We cheer so loud
They play a stunningly awesome set
And by far the best bit yet
We got to give Kim her Ferrero Rochers

Kim Seviour, all because the lady loves Ferrero Rocher
The journey home was fun
Especially on the tube
More carols and timewarps, nothing rude
The train was sedate by comparison
But spent with an enjoyable travelling companion
The lady who works for Arsenal football club
And supports Liverpool
Not sure whether this is really sensible
But then again nor are we, normally
All in all a great combination
Makes for an entertaining conversation
And once more home again draws near
From what was quite possibly
The gig of the year!
Mmm, I think I’ll go with that
And a Ferrero Rocher in a Christmas hat.

Touchstone in full sway
Grant Meaby


Now before I go I just have to mention, December also brought the new, long awaited, Pallas album wearewhoweare and, whilst I do not normally do album reviews or the like I just have to mention this one as, for me, it is pretty damn close to being the album of the year, was it worth the wait, you bet, it is, in my humble opinion, a masterpiece.

So, one more gig to go this year and that will be the IQ Christmas party at the O2 Academy Islington, looking forward to that one and maybe see some of you "Down the front" as they say, until then, cheers me dears, happy Yuletide.

Grant Meaby - December 2014

Monday, 1 December 2014

3 in 1 Like a Well Oiled Machine (Gong, Larry Miller, Space Ritual)

And so there I was, a couple of years back, chatting to Kavus Torabi after a great Knifeworld gig and telling him that I thought Knifeworld were what Gong would be like if they formed today, he was somewhat chuffed and told me that he had recently (At that time) met the wonderful Daevid Allen and now here he is, a few years later, fronting Gong while Daevid is recovering back in Australia, it is indeed a small and wonderfully strange world!

Three in One – Like a Well Oiled Machine

Why three in one? I hear you say
Just what was the order of the day?
Well in this case as you’ll soon see
It was three gigs in three days

Fellowship foursome

Dateline Friday 28th November 
An afternoon and night I’ll always remember
As The Fellowship descended upon Islington
For an afternoon’s drinking and an evening of Gong
With the morning at work well over and done
We were off to London to have some fun
Lunch at the White Swan and charity shop shopping 
Then off to the Compton Arms and the Smokehouse without stopping
Then the famous Hope and Anchor and the Library
 Home of craft beers for our afternoon tea
Where the strangest of half priced cocktails flowed
Well it was during ‘Happy Hour’ I suppose
The Famous Cock was too busy for a beer
So back to the White Swan where we’d started out here!
And then over to The Garage for the Gong family and Gong
With Kavus Torabi at the helm they can’t go wrong
An awesome night of great music and quite remarkably
A journey home without incident for Chris, Kevin, Peter and me!
One down, two to go!

Gong 2014 in full fine flow

Dateline Saturday 29th November 2014
Number two out of three if you see what I mean
And this time something a little less distance away
Letchworth Arts Centre was the order of the day
And a gig which promised to be a real thriller
An intimate evening with Bluesman Larry Miller
The only downside of this Saturday night
Was Peter who sadly failed to ignite!
But for Kevin, Chris, Smiffy, and me
The blues had us singing and dancing merrily
It was nice to see many from the CRF crowd
And hear Larry play the blues again good and loud
But all too soon it was over and done
But we’d sure had another great evening of fun.

Larry Miller and his band

Dateline Sunday 30th November
Where I am I now? I can’t quite remember!
Ah yes day three of the 3 gig weekend
We made it this far and were close to the end
Back to London to the Borderline for the Space Ritual Implosion
Their last ever gig or a just cunning promotion?
To be honest about it, it doesn’t really matter
Nik Turner’s amazing if somewhat mad as a hatter
Tom Crimble’s ‘Inevitable’ opened the show
Country Blues Rock on a space night, well I don’t know!
But the sell-out crowd seemed to lap it up OK
And I spotted our Chris just happily dancing away
And then came the point we’d all waited for
Nik Turner’s Space Ritual had taken the floor
And ruled it by storm for the next couple of hours
Their own songs and Hawkwind oldies suitably devoured
And Ms Angel danced as alluring as can be
We had another great time, Kevin Chris and me
And perhaps it was the three days taking their toll
But a sedate journey home, no embarrassment at all
All in all it had been lots of fun
Like a well-oiled machine 
We’d survived three in one.

Space Ritual, a cosmic wow!

Grant Meaby 

Here are a couple more photos from the evenings:-

Kev & his cocktails

Larry in B & W

Inevitable in action

Space Ritual
Well, what a splendid weekend but I must say I am feeling it somewhat now! It's time for a rest for a couple of weeks I think as we ramp up towards the Yuletide season, cool runnings one and all, until the next time.