Love Music Hate Racism Flyer

“Poverty’s bad
War is bad
Racism’s bad
Well done, have a biscuit”

“I hope this doesn’t apply to tonight’s gathering?” Chris T-T mischievously asks as he ends his “Love Music Hate Racism” set with “Preaching to the converted” a song questioning the point of “Singing it out loud to a partisan crowd”.
The 99.9% white, middle class crowd sat around tables in the chandeliered ballroom of Bush Hall responded with slightly bemused cheers, well how else could we react? Just nod in agreement?

I bought Chris T-T’s 2001 album “The 253”, and then for some reason he disappeared off my radar a bit. Last years “9 Red Songs” though is impossible to ignore (actually im sure its not actually impossible..but its certainly worth not ignoring) its basically the lost peak form Billy Bragg album that Billy never made. He’s got the perfect mix of wit and politics to deftly handle this events very worthy cause, and the inherent awkwardness hinted at in the previously mentioned “Preaching to the converted”.

What’s more a good album is taken to an even higher level when performed live, with “A Plague on Both Your Houses (lyrics)” and “The Huntsman Comes A-Marchin (lyrics)” both highlights.
If you ever wished for a decent song about the Countryside alliance, and their fight for the right to rip small animals to shreds… no I doubt you did, but if you did this is it. Starting off bemoaning the closure of rural post offices, village stores and second home owning townies, a passing countryside alliancer might think they’d discovered something to play in the land rover on the way to the next march.

“Now the Countryside Alliance
We’ll call them ‘the cunts’ for short
They promised in defiance
That a battle would be fought
Then ignored the real problems
To shout about their bloody sport”

Of course no album of “Red songs” would be complete without a ditty tackling the thorny issue of Tony & George’s mission to piss off the entire Muslim world.

“Waiting for the liberation you trumpet from the rooftops
Even as you trample through
My house is on fire, no power, no water
But you think I should thank you….
A plague on both your houses
The house of money and the house of God”

As Chris would no doubt admit, an anti racism crowd was always bound to lap up such sentiments, but unlike most so called protests songs it has the benefit of not only spot on lyrics, but more importantly a fine tune.

Chris T-T info
Listen to live version of “The Huntsmen” here and download two session tracks – “The English Earth” & “Moths & Bees”

Buy the album “9 Red Songs” – Amazon / Piccadilly

Website / Myspace

And so to the headline act… Bush Hall, essentially a ball room complete with chandeliers and a stage plonked at one end is not the first place you’d expect to see Dan Treacy’s legendary Punk band “The Television Personalities”. Yet shortly after ten struggling onto stage comes Dan complaining of ill health, and quipping that he thought this was a “support fascism” gig. Ed Ball joined him, pointing out that they looked a right pair with matching acoustic guitars (very punk!)

I have to admit not knowing too much about TVP before I bought tickets for this Love Music, Hate Racism event. It may have been 11 years since their last record, but new album “My Dark Places” demonstrates that they certainly haven’t withered with age. The album like tonight’s performance is at times awkward, occasionally amateurish, but equally rewards the listener who perseveres. Dan is not a man who’s afraid to say what he thinks or bare his soul, and in every line of every song is heartbreak, loss, confession, and thank god a heavy dollop of humour.

Television Personalities - Bush Hall 26/02/06 03

Be sure to turn your mobiles off during the performance is not a phrase Dan seems to have encountered as mid song off goes a very loud amplified bleep bleep of a text message, causing him embarrassment, equalled only by the crowds amusement, especially when he reveals ” I don’t believe it…its my mum… I knew I should have turned it off”.

The new songs played easily match up to the old with “She Can Stop Traffic”, “All The Young Children On Crack” and “I’m Not Your Typical Boy” all superb. Typical Boy in particular has fantastic lyrics, and is sung as if a personal anthem.
At the end some one came out and gesticulated one more song, to which Dan enquired if he was saying one more or just giving him the finger. He also responded to most shouted song requests with an affectionate “Fuck Off”.

Television Personalities - Bush Hall 26/02/06 05

All in all The Television Personalities are well worth seeing live, and i’d definitely recommend their album, but tonight’s venue doesn’t suit them. Its not that Bush Hall is a bad venue, far from it, but the decision to put out large tables and chairs was strange, killing the atmosphere… I half expected to be presented with tasks, and puzzles so each table could group bond. Very Odd.

Television Personalities info
Website:
The Strangely Beautiful Website / Televisionpersonalities.co.uk

MP3’s:
All The Young Children On Smack, All The Young Children On Crack
She Can Stop Traffic
Ex-Girlfriends Club
I Hope You’re Happy Now
Excellent archive stuff (inc. John Peel playing them in 70’s) Television Personalities MP3’s

Videos: All The Young Children On Crack (Download)) / The Painted Word (excellent archive video on YouTube)

Buy: New LP/Single from Domino / Amazon: Best of / New Album