The Great Escape 2008: Wha ‘appen?

The three day fun-fest finished days ago, but it’s taken me half a week to get over the shakes; at some point on Sunday I apparently underwent a hand transfusion with an old lady in her 70′s. It’s quite nice, because my pockets now smell of Palma Violets, but it’s been very tricky knocking out anything over four words per minute. I’ve regained much of my constitution today, which is a bloody good job because the weekend starts again tomorrow… it’s probably best that I summarise on the previous posts before I sacrifice more braincells to the noble pursuit of leisure.

Saturday was a long old day. During the afternoon I opened up nice and wide to orally accommodate huge corporate ding a ling. I’m not proud of what I did but a mans gotsta get weighed out every once in a while, and the bubbles helped take the taste away. I swiftly rejoined Captain Truth and Star Tufnell at a nearby watering whole and put the whole sordid affair behind me. Though the sky above us portended towards the dismal we partook in much muckery; in a rare twist the Messer became the Messee and lo, the seed of wrongess was safely sown.

Sorry, did someone order a load of waffle? I digress. In keeping with previous days (and to be fair, every festival, gig or village fete I’ve ever been to) I missed most of the bands I’d half thought about seeing. Probably the best one I missed was Esser, who played in the pub next door to the Porter’s Cabin. I heard it rattling through the two ply and it sounded surprisingly alright, so after getting on with whatever it was that took me back to the third floor catacomb I call home, I ventured next door:

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Great Escape 2008: Can I play with Madness?

Nescafe, Nescafe’ what better way to start your day? I’ll tell you a better way to start your day, and you can have this one on the Maxwell House: meet the Young Knives at lunchtime, head for the succour of their post-future hotel room and sit back as they strum their way through a couple of acoustic renditions of some of their finely crafted pop hits.

Keeping things loosely related, we fortuitously bumped into Toby from Transgressive Records and Tom Hannan, the man responsible for (Transgressive’s sister website). The ravages of the previous evenings festivities still cast something of a shadow, but a steaming mug of Joe put them straight and thus we did chew the fat about the UK’s thriving music scene.

Next stop was Ebony Bones, but sadly it was not to be, maybe she bumped into a proper interviewer, maybe she couldn’t trust herself to maintain her composure when presented with a boggly eyed brute such as myself, maybe she just got stuck in traffic: either way there’s always tomorrow.

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Great Escape 2008: And thus it begins…

Should anyone have been paying attention it may have appeared as if The Porter Report had become subsumed in something of a hiatus over recent weeks. Fear not fair reader, for appearances, like lady boys, can be mightily deceptive. In the same way swans glide majestically across a pond and the quiet bloke next door turns out to be a serial killer, it’s all been going on beneath the surface; I’ve been as busy as a dog with two dicks getting plans in order for this years Great Escape Festival.

With cameras primed, brogues polished and banter turned up to eleven we launched ourselves upon an unsuspecting Brighton. What better way to start the day than with some jazz talk? Empirical are an unquestionable force in new British Jazz, and we managed to grab them for an interview before their sold out lunchtime show at the Pavilion Theatre. These boys are some seriously hep cats, dressed to the nines and smart as freshly smacked bottoms.

Jumping through genres like a show dog through hoops, we then ingratiated ourselves upon Cadence Weapon. At 22 years old Rollie Pemberton is still happily munching his way though his salad days, and as his sophmore album ‘Afterparty Babies’ attests, his take on MC ing is fresher than a mint flavoured wet wipe.

As the sky bruised we headed to the seafront to honour an appointment with Barry from The Futureheads, a band enjoying newly found stability since starting their own record label. Discussing the state of the music industry, their recording sessions with producer Youth and the merits of life in Andalucia, it soon became apparent that Barry is, as the French would put it, un bloody bonne ouef!

And so as a huntsman packs his rifle into a velvet lined gun case, so my microphone was set down in it’s leather effect pouch and the merriment began post haste. I quickly inhaled a couple of portions of ice cold German lager beer and hot footed it to the Red Rooster to catch our old mate Alexander G Muertos. Unfortunately I got there too early and had to endure an acoustic set by The Valentines. Not wanting to sound dismissive, but these boys came across like Shed Seven without the good bits (yep, it was that bad); they could very well be the reason why fish are deaf.

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An Invisible Touch

The news was met with dewy eyes and much contrition: a light went out forever as Phil Collins announced his retirement from music, starting with immediate effect. Like Leaded Petrol and Michael Barrymore, the Big PC has struggled to find a relevancy in the digital age; outmoded and irrelevant he has spent the past few years driving his massive yacht around Lake Geneva, polishing his head and counting his Nazi Gold, unable to recapture the greatness that gave the world such hits as the vaguely menacing ‘Billy, Don’t Loose That Number’, the haunting meditation on tramp banging ‘Another Day In Paradise’ and my personal favourite Su Su Sudio (in which our snatch-eyed protagonist atones for his inadequacies as a Father with some really shit hot flam work). Art-Rock Drum Twat turned reclusive millionaire Collins, who won the hearts of millions with his borderline rapey performance in Buster, has avowed to spend his pudding years building the worlds largest collection of memorabilia from The Alamo. As Littlejohn would scoff, you really couldn’t make it up.

As sad as the news may have been, it wasn’t going to stop me from living La Vida Russy with a Bank Holiday on the horizon, so with best brogue forward I wiped my peepers and took myself uptown to watch a band and nurse a scoop or two of the black stuff. Quite fortuitously I ended up at the Scruffy Bird night at The Star of Bethnal Green, the musical distraction laid on courtesy of The Invisible.

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