AUBL night June 2001

Sirius rockin’ the CKs @ AUBL Night, Lava, June 2001

A snippet of conversation, tunnelling through a crowded pub. A raunchy billboard that stirs a buried memory. Inspiration can come from the unlikeliest of places.

This article was inspired by the most uninspiring listicle I’ve ever endured – and that’s saying something. Congratulations Press & Journal: you took a tired format, missed the bandwagon and somehow contrived to omit every element that made the formula successful in the first place. (You know: a catchy title; humour; mobile-friendly images – important stuff like that.)

Still, if it wasn’t for your ham-fisted attempt at nostalgia this article would never have happened, so give yourselves a pat on the back – your ineptitude caused some good in this world.

And after an excoriating opener like that, I guess I’d better make this piece brilliant. Otherwise, I’m going to look like a right dick.

inspirational philosoraptor

Local venues you won’t remember

It’s not the drink, the drugs or the largely forgettable bands who played there: you won’t remember these venues because, statistically speaking, you’re too young.

Millennials: read and learn. Gen X-ers (aka Old People): read and reminisce. What are your best memories of these long-forgotten Aberdeen venues?

Drake’s

Drake’s was where most local bands cut their teeth and slaked their thirst for illicit pints. In an era where phone reception didn’t matter, Drakes was the bar From Dusk Till Dawn. Once barricaded inside, it was just you, a bunch of mates and the dual elixirs of beer and rock. It was more than enough to get you through the night.

Where was it? Castlegate, next to La Lombarda restaurant
What is it now? Part of La Lombarda
Memories: Teenage metal bands, teenage everyone, standing on every surface, crowd-surfing, DJs in the deserted lounge, Sharon, Dave Dixon, LIB–ERRR–EIIIIIIGHT!!!!

Dr Drake’s

flowback gig flier dr drakesAfter Drake’s shut down (possibly because of noise complaints?), the Doc succeeded it, bringing all the goodness of Drake’s to a (slightly) larger venue near the harbour. The Aberdeen music scene was at its zenith (c. 2003): emo juice was in, the Motorola Razr was the epitome of cool and everyone was screaming into microphones, but Liber8 still did it best.

Where was it? Shiprow near PureGym
What is it now? After a few makeovers (it was a piano and cabaret bar at one point), the Dr is now Malones, a tacky Irish bar (is there any other kind?)
Memories: Punk bands, emo bands, everyone smoking outside, lingering in the loading bay, Sharon, band stickers on the hand dryers, everything turned up too loud, Nicky Casino

The Palace

Believe it or not, there was a time when being alternative marked you out for ridicule by mainstream society. In late 90s Aberdeen, tattoos, piercings or a flowing trenchcoat could see you jumped. (OK, a trenchcoat probably still could.) These days everyone is alternative which is why no one is alternative; Gen Y-ers are now born sporting half sleeves and dumb piercings.

At the turn of the millennium though, there was one place where the misfits, the freaks, the unwashed and the unloved could merrily mingle. That place was The Palace and No I Don’t Miss That Place So Hard There’s a Tear Rolling Down My Cheek As I Needlessly Capitalise The Fuck Out Of This Sentence.

manly tears

Where was it? Bridge Place
What is it now? The Palace became the monstrosity that was Liquid. Today, it’s the monstrosity that is Institute.
Memories: Cheap pints, Aftershock, sticky carpets, those heaters, those toilets, ‘walking a lap’, DJ Ross dropping the last tune, the moshpit, the lights going on, everyone lingering outside.

Click for full feels

Click for full feels

Lava

Lava belmont streetWhich name should we append to this dearly departed venue which has had more identities than a paranoid schizophrenic? First came Glow 303, then Lava, then Kef, then some shitty hotel. Has anyone who wasn’t an Eastern European hooker ever stayed in Aberdeen City Centre Hotel?

Muse played here once. Biffy Clyro played here. So did Funeral For A Friend and some other Welsh band whose name escapes me because WE’RE TOO BUSY OBSESSING OVER HISTORICAL PAEDOPHILIA TO RECALL MODERN PAEDOPHILIA.

Where was it? Belmont Street
What is it now? A sorry-looking hotel
Memories: The bouncy floor, dodgy flavoured shots, Paul “Four local bands? That’ll be £8” Stewart, the stench of unwashed dreads, the “dressing room”, watching support bands from the top floor cos ‘assed walking downstairs

kef

Aberdeen Student Union

A sprawling, ramshackle cavern, Aberdeen Student Union was several shades of awesome. Brain Haemorrhage cocktails in Sivells, dirties in The Factory and live music in The Dungeon on Thursdays. So much alcohol. So much sex. Well, more than right now at any rate.

Where was it? On the corner of Gallowgate
What is it now? Next department store
Memories: Crates of Tennent’s for bands. Crates of Tennent’s for DJs. Crates of Tennent’s. Trying to take £250 out the Cops N Robbers bandit but never managing. 50p voka and cokes. Fifty fucking pee.

The legendary Paul Stewart

The legendary Paul Stewart

Imagine

Imagine was never destined to be a classic gig venue, club or anything else for that matter – though it did do banging kebabs. A salsa club for international students in one of the highest-rateable parts of Aberdeen? This had bust written all over it.

A handful of gigs were hosted circa 2004 before it all went tits up, including a night that featured Stayover, Within These Walls, We Shall Be Blessed and At Long Last.

“It’s kinda like a gym hall with a school disco in it,” observed Bob. He was right.

Where was it? Gaelic Lane, just off Belmont Street
What is it now? A coffee shop
Memories: Lionel Richie, awesome kebabs, salsa, black people

Capitol Theatre

capitol theatre aberdeenThe Capitol was a grand old cinema with a huge organ (arf) that came through the floor. Seriously. As a live venue, The Capitol hosted all manner of rock dinosaurs long before they were ever regarded as dinosaurs.

“Among the bands I’ve seen there were the Rolling Stones, the Cure, Siouxsie & the Banshees, the Buzzcocks, Chuck Berry, Bo Diddley, the Kinks, Jethro Tull, Everly Bros, Van Morrison, Elvis Costello, Paul McCartney, the Smiths and Talking Heads,” recalls Alan Cynic.

Also, Black Sabbath supposedly once played there – supported by Van Halen. The Granite City used to rock.

Where was it? Union Street, where Jumpin Jaks/Chicago Rock/Oscars were
What is it now? In the process of becoming another bland office block
Memories: Simple Minds in 1995; going to the cinema and being amazed by the disappearing organ player

Pelican Club / Metro

As Aberdeen’s preeminent Church of Smashdom, the Pelican saw some utter carnage. This grimy Fritzl’s basement, housed in the bowels of the Hotel Metro, dripped endorphins and amphetamines on club nights.

Gig nights were cold, smoky affairs; details are sketchy but back when they were called Scuff, Deadloss Superstar played here alongside Clocker. Snow Patrol also played back when they were a shitey wee indie band as opposed to a shitey indie band.

Where was it? Market Street
What is it now? Rox Hotel, though if you were to creep into its dingy basement today there’d probably still be a few ravers going strong. Fritzl’s basement has seen some shit.
Memories: Cold stone, hot bodies, swedgers, smoke, poppers, drugs, more drugs, drugs.

The Malt Mill

Provided you had your own PA and a fuckton of mates, downstairs gigs at The Malt Mill were a lot of fun. Otherwise, the place was a soulless hangar where crap indie bands went to die.

Where was it? Holburn Street
What is it now? Upstairs is still The Malt Mill, while in a stroke of genius, downstairs has been rebranded as Downstairs
Memories: Indie bands. So many indie bands

Caesar’s Palace

Another dilapidated venue that was well past its sell-by date by the early noughties. Memories are hazy at best, but TAR played their last gig there and ex-Iron Maiden singer Blaze Bayley certainly played here – the review can be found in the bonus section further down the page.

Where was it? Crown Street, near the corner of Windmill Brae
What is it now? IIRC, Caesar’s became Shenanigans, before eventually morphing into The Office, accompanied by a titty bar called 7.
Memories: Um…shiny surfaces? Mirrored surfaces perhaps? It was up some stairs. That’s all you’re getting.

the lokup gig posterThe Loft

This was never going to be a great venue; situated on Justice Mill Lane, in the heart of Aberdeen’s cunt district, it never stood a chance. With such illustrious neighbours as Charlie’s and Bud Bar, failure was all but assured. It didn’t help that it was at the top of six flights of stairs, providing another reason to hate drummers.

Where was it? Cuntsville, Aberdeen, above O’Donoghue’s
What is it now? No idea
Memories: Wooden venue, no one there

Wildcard entry: The Lok-Up

It scarcely existed for six months, but in its short time on this earth, my rehearsal studio-cum-chill-out facility brought joy and mellow feels to many. A handful of gigs/parties were held here featuring bands such as Lost and Stayover. Edgar Prais started life here while I was ‘otherwise disposed’.

Where was it? James St, near the harbour
What is it now? A workshop
Memories: Noise complaints, PacMan pinball, awesome artwork, 420 errday

lokup

Bonus Feature

So you want moar? OK, prepare to nostalgia like a motherfucker: the tab below contains every surviving review I wrote of Aberdeen’s music scene, organised by band and venue name.

Click me

Disclaimer: Many of these reviews are nearly 15 years old. Expect non-sequiturs, inside jokes and an unhealthy obsession with MILFs, lesbians, Pete Harper and Linkin Park. The latter two seem to crop up repeatedly for reasons long forgotten.

If you played in one of these local bands or are curious to find out how much a drink cost in early noughties Aberdeen, read on. There are some gems to be found amidst all the WTF moments.

The best novelty reviews

While most of these reviews follow a conventional format, a handful of them dispensed with normality altogether. Instead, we got this:

The Acronym Onepoint of origin, quik @ drakes

The Poetic OneDos Dedos Fudgenite @ The Lemon Tree

The Two-Reviews-In-One OneAnal Punishers, The Gents, Eminence, Josephine, Kelebeck Butterfly, Evergreen, Subsist, Deliverance Night 2 @ The Loft

The-First-Letter-Of-Each-Sentence Onepsycho a go go, masamune, mexico set, bench, the 44s @ dr drake’s

Venues

  • Aberdeen Student Union

Xposure: Aberdeen Student Union Venue Review

  • Caesar’s Palace

Blaze Bayley, Risactonia, Black Atom @ Caesar’s Palace

  • Cafe Drummond

Xposure: Drummonds Venue Review

  • Drake’s

maple, deadloss superstar, lucas @ drakes

out cold, we become less, in decades decline @ drakes

point of origin, quik @ drakes

Xposure: Drake’s Venue Review

  • Dr Drake’s

purple munkie black atom, eric euan, red man walking @ fudge frenzy, dr drakes

psycho a go go, masamune, mexico set, bench, the 44s @ dr drake’s

this girl, liber8, sirius @ Dr Drake’s (reviewed by Bob)

  • Exodus

dustbyte, quik, khalmsinn, stuka @ exodus

Psycho A Go Go @ Exodus

risingson, quik, tenesee kait, my decaying leg @ exodus

Xposure: Exodus Venue Review

  • Lava

altrock & the kenadas @ Cabal night, Lava

Antiproduct & Psycho Ago Go @ Lava

b-movie heroes psycho a go-go, point of origin, film 28 @ lava

capdown, 5 knuckle, quik, dynarod @ lava

clocker, the needles, maple, lift @ lava

clocker, popcorn fiend, guile, sinister waltz, hooker’s green #1, Cabal night @ Lava

greyskull, 7 stone under @ Lava

incendo, fony, liber8, lethal dosage @ lava

plan a, psycho a go go, hot mangu @ lava

Point Of Origin @ lava

point of origin, my decaying leg, 10 easy wishes @ lava

risactonia, quik, contra, my decaying leg @ fishstock, lava

Xposure: Lava Venue Review

  • The Forum

earthtone9, subsist, deadloss superstar @ the forum

Xposure: The Forum Venue Review

  • The Lemon Tree

Dos Dedos Fudgenite @ The Lemon Tree

Flight 19, Liber8, Sirius @ The Lemon Tree

Lift, Subsistence, Deadloss Superstar, Degrassi GoNorth Fudgenite @ The Lemon Tree

Purple Munkie @ The Lemon Tree

Xposure: The Lemon Tree Venue Review

  • The Loft

Anal Punishers, The Gents, Eminence, Josephine, Kelebeck Butterfly, Evergreen, Subsist, Deliverance Night @ The Loft

Xposure: The Loft Venue Review

  • The Malt Mill

Xposure: The Malt Mill Venue Review

  • The Music Hall

Xposure: The Music Hall Venue Review

  • The Palace

Xposure: The Palace Venue Review

Local Bands

 

  • 7 Stone Under

7 Stone Under demo

greyskull, 7 stone under @ Lava

 

  • 10 Easy Wishes

point of origin, my decaying leg, 10 easy wishes @ lava

 

  • AltRock

altrock & the kenadas @ Cabal night, Lava

 

  • Anal Punishers

Anal Punishers, The Gents, Eminence, Josephine, Kelebeck Butterfly, Evergreen, Subsist, Deliverance Night @ The Loft

 

  • Bench

psycho a go go, masamune, mexico set, bench, the 44s @ dr drake’s

 

  • Black Atom

Blaze Bayley, Risactonia, Black Atom @ Caesar’s Palace

purple munkie black atom, eric euan, red man walking @ fudge frenzy, dr drakes

 

  • Clocker

Clocker Milk

clocker, the needles, maple, lift @ lava

clocker, popcorn fiend, guile, sinister waltz, hooker’s green #1, Cabal night @ Lava

 

 

  • Contra

risactonia, quik, contra, my decaying leg @ fishstock, lava

 

  • Deadloss Superstar

maple, deadloss superstar, lucas @ drakes

earthtone9, subsist, deadloss superstar @ the forum

Lift, Subsistence, Deadloss Superstar, Degrassi GoNorth Fudgenite @ The Lemon Tree

 

  • Dos Dedos

Dos Dedos Fudgenite @ The Lemon Tree  (Dos Dedos also feature in this review for some reason) 

 

  • Eminence

Anal Punishers, The Gents, Eminence, Josephine, Kelebeck Butterfly, Evergreen, Subsist, Deliverance Night @ The Loft

 

  • Eric Euan

purple munkie black atom, eric euan, red man walking @ fudge frenzy, dr drakes

 

  • Evergreen

Evergreen demo

Anal Punishers, The Gents, Eminence, Josephine, Kelebeck Butterfly, Evergreen, Subsist, Deliverance Night @ The Loft

 

  • Film 28

b-movie heroes psycho a go-go, point of origin, film 28 @ lava

 

  • Flight 19

Flight 19 demo

Flight 19, Liber8, Sirius @ The Lemon Tree

 

  • Guile

clocker, popcorn fiend, guile, sinister waltz, hooker’s green #1, Cabal night @ Lava

 

  • Hooker’s Green #1

clocker, popcorn fiend, guile, sinister waltz, hooker’s green #1, Cabal night @ Lava

 

  • Hot Mangu

plan a, psycho a go go, hot mangu @ lava

 

  • Josephine

Anal Punishers, The Gents, Eminence, Josephine, Kelebeck Butterfly, Evergreen, Subsist, Deliverance Night @ The Loft

 

  • Kelebeck Butterfly

Anal Punishers, The Gents, Eminence, Josephine, Kelebeck Butterfly, Evergreen, Subsist, Deliverance Night @ The Loft

 

  • Khalmsinn

dustbyte, quik, khalmsinn, stuka @ exodus

 

  • Lethal Dosage

incendo, fony, liber8, lethal dosage @ lava

 

  • Liber8

Liber8 demo

this girl, liber8, sirius @ Dr Drake’s

incendo, fony, liber8, lethal dosage @ lava

Flight 19, Liber8, Sirius @ The Lemon Tree

 

  • Lift

clocker, the needles, maple, lift @ lava

Lift, Subsistence, Deadloss Superstar, Degrassi GoNorth Fudgenite @ The Lemon Tree

 

  • Lucas

maple, deadloss superstar, lucas @ drakes

 

  • Maple

maple, deadloss superstar, lucas @ drakes

clocker, the needles, maple, lift @ lava

 

  • Masamune

psycho a go go, masamune, mexico set, bench, the 44s @ dr drake’s

 

  • Mexico Set

psycho a go go, masamune, mexico set, bench, the 44s @ dr drake’s

 

  • My Decaying Leg

risingson, quik, tenesee kait, my decaying leg @ exodus

point of origin, my decaying leg, 10 easy wishes @ lava

risactonia, quik, contra, my decaying leg @ fishstock, lava

 

  • Point of Origin

b-movie heroes psycho a go-go, point of origin, film 28 @ lava

Point Of Origin @ lava

point of origin, my decaying leg, 10 easy wishes @ lava

point of origin, quik @ drakes

 

  • Popcorn Fiend

clocker, popcorn fiend, guile, sinister waltz, hooker’s green #1, Cabal night @ Lava

 

  • Psycho A Go Go

Psycho A Go Go – Sin City

Psycho A Go Go @ Exodus

Antiproduct & Psycho Ago Go @ Lava

b-movie heroes psycho a go-go, point of origin, film 28 @ lava

plan a, psycho a go go, hot mangu @ lava

psycho a go go, masamune, mexico set, bench, the 44s @ dr drake’s

 

  • Purple Munkie

Purple Munkie Fisty EP

purple munkie black atom, eric euan, red man walking @ fudge frenzy, dr drakes

Purple Munkie @ The Lemon Tree

 

  • Quik

Quik Demo

dustbyte, quik, khalmsinn, stuka @ exodus

risingson, quik, tenesee kait, my decaying leg @ exodus

capdown, 5 knuckle, quik, dynarod @ lava

risactonia, quik, contra, my decaying leg @ fishstock, lava

Quik @ Exodus

point of origin, quik @ drakes

 

  • Red Man Walking

purple munkie black atom, eric euan, red man walking @ fudge frenzy, dr drakes

 

  • Risactonia

Blaze Bayley, Risactonia, Black Atom @ Caesar’s Palace

risactonia, quik, contra, my decaying leg @ fishstock, lava

 

  • Sinister Waltz

clocker, popcorn fiend, guile, sinister waltz, hooker’s green #1, Cabal night @ Lava

 

  • Sirius

this girl, liber8, sirius @ Dr Drake’s

Flight 19, Liber8, Sirius @ The Lemon Tree

 

  • Stuka

dustbyte, quik, khalmsinn, stuka @ exodus

 

  • Subsistence

earthtone9, subsist, deadloss superstar @ the forum

Lift, Subsistence, Deadloss Superstar, Degrassi GoNorth Fudgenite @ The Lemon Tree

Anal Punishers, The Gents, Eminence, Josephine, Kelebeck Butterfly, Evergreen, Subsist, Deliverance Night @ The Loft

 

  • The 44s

psycho a go go, masamune, mexico set, bench, the 44s @ dr drake’s

 

  • The Gents

Anal Punishers, The Gents, Eminence, Josephine, Kelebeck Butterfly, Evergreen, Subsist, Deliverance Night @ The Loft

 

  • The Kenadas

altrock & the kenadas @ Cabal night, Lava

 

  • The Needles

clocker, the needles, maple, lift @ lava

 

  • We Become Less

out cold, we become less, in decades decline @ drakes

 

 

Touring Bands

5 Knuckle: capdown, 5 knuckle, quik, dynarod @ lava AFI: King Tut’s Antiproduct: Antiproduct & Psycho Ago Go @ Lava Blaze Bayley: Blaze Bayley, Risactonia, Black Atom @ Caesar’s Palace B-Movie Heroes: b-movie heroes psycho a go-go, point of origin, film 28 @ lava Capdown: capdown, 5 knuckle, quik, dynarod @ lava Degrassi: Lift, Subsistence, Deadloss Superstar, Degrassi GoNorth Fudgenite @ The Lemon Tree Dustbyte: dustbyte, quik, khalmsinn, stuka @ exodus Dynarod: capdown, 5 knuckle, quik, dynarod @ lava earthtone9: earthtone9, subsist, deadloss superstar @ the forum Fony: incendo, fony, liber8, lethal dosage @ lava Greyskull: greyskull, 7 stone under @ Lava Incendo: incendo, fony, liber8, lethal dosage @ lava In Decades Decline: out cold, we become less, in decades decline @ drakes Out Cold: out cold, we become less, in decades decline @ drakes Plan A: plan a, psycho a go go, hot mangu @ lava Risingson: risingson, quik, tenesee kait, my decaying leg @ exodus Tenesee Kait: Cherries single / risingson, quik, tenesee kait, my decaying leg @ exodus This Girl: this girl, liber8, sirius @ Dr Drake’s

 

 

Last month, Ed Uncovered was all about fatness and fast food (The McWorkout). This month’s series is focused on fitness and good food (The Workout).

This listicle provides a taster of what’s coming next on Ed Uncovered – a four-week series on Nostalgia. Were things really as good as we remember or is time just playing tricks?

Retro gaming, indestructible mobile phones, soap bar, X-Files, Viennetta for dessert and albums that never age – they’ll all be revisited and reappraised in the coming weeks. Follow on Twitter and Facebook for the latest updates and prepare to nostalgia so hard you start shitting Rubik’s Cubes.

Oh, and people: Stop sharing badly-written listicles by the P&J. It only encourages them.

 

tbreak lava 5th may

Sirius: T Break gig @ Lava 5th May 2001

 

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