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Monsters of Spex Friday

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This is about the second day of the Monsters of Spex festival 2006 in Köln. See also: Monsters of Spex Thursday, photos on flickr, Monsters of Spex 2005.

Before starting on the second helping of musical extravaganza, I still had some hours to spend on Friday. I met my school-friend Katja then – for the first time in years and in a bit too much of a rush to really catch up. Then I met my brother and his friends who wanted to use the car and we had a quick look around Köln before they dropped me off at the festival area. With it starting to rain heavily while we were in the afternoon traffic jam on the way there, things didn’t start off too well.

In fact, I arrived too late to really see The Pipettes play, just catching the last notes if you wish. While that all-girl band idea is quite sweet, I have to admit that I’m not too enthusiastic about it and it I does sound a bit artificially retro for my taste.

I once more had to notice that the idea of having a festival both in a town and in an area that isn’t particularly huge and has tarred ground is an excellent idea. Even the rain isn’t too much of a problem when things don’t turn into a giant mud-pit. What surprised me (once more, so it wasn’t technically a surprise, I guess), is that the audience at Monsters of Spex is quite old. Many people close to or well beyond thirty hanging out there. Perhaps that is because all the kids are in Berlin these days or because Monsters of Spex is part of the c/o pop music ‘conference’ thing where probably all the ageing hipsters from the music magazines and the ‘industry’ hang out? But being on the ageing side myself, that may have made the whole affair more relaxing, I guess.


The first band I properly saw today were the Editors. I’m not the biggest fan of their music, which I mostly use for background listening because it’s relatively quiet and not outrageously exciting. Uh, and their singer has a really big mouth which he likes to keep open even when he isn’t singing… tonsils didn’t look infected though ;) [Buy at amazon .com, .uk, .de]

Editors on stage

Nouvelle Vague

After having enjoyed seeing Nouvelle Vague two years ago, I looked forward to see them again. They recently released Bande à Part, their second album of bossa nova cover version goodness. While not being too excitingly new, it certainly adds to their repertoire. And you just can’t ignore that seeing their singers perform on stage is one of the main benefits of seeing the band.

Nouvelle Vague on Stage

The beginning of the gig was spoiled by more rain coming down, but with the weather being critical I had taken an umbrella along (which makes you quite popular in such a situation) and remained dry. Naturally it was even better when the rain stopped after a few songs and the music could be enjoyed without that extra hassle. This time they didn’t come with two guitar players but replaced the second of them by keyboards, a drum kit and a proper bass – thus getting a somewhat richer sound. I really like acoustic bass… [Buy at amazon .com, .uk, .de]

Nouvelle Vague on stage


And that was it for me for the festival, in fact. I had to catch my train to Bremen at nine taking me to Bremen for a good friend’s wedding on Saturday. So I had to skip the last band (which was some hip-hop stuff that I didn’t care for anyway) and my brother picked me up and dropped me at the station. He even brought along a little dinner bag for me with some sandwiches, so I wouldn’t starve before I arrived.

August 26, 2006, 12:38

Tagged as live.

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