'Amuzed' - 20/03/98
Wingerdstok competition below
Achtung (in cheek) Babies!
El Bono and the boys blew into Cape Town this week and things will never be the same. Madiba may be the greatest 'ou' on earth (and Louis Luyt the greatest schmo on earth) but everyone around here's still talking 'bout PopMart-music, surely the greatest show on earth. A crowd of around 30 000 were treated to a foretaste of the 21st century, and at the same time realised what the cultural "person-cott" deprived us of for all those years. Sure, we've had our share of big stars and lavish concerts these past few years but all those Rolling Stones, Michael Jackson, Tina Turner and Gloria Estefan stadium spectaculars simply pale in comparison to what we were treated to on Monday night.
This was the second last date of the PopMart tour and the rest of the planet has already seen this, so a description of the wondrous and monstous video screen, props, sound and volume would be superfluous. Have to mention the crowd, though, who reacted with one heart and mind to the spectacle that was being played out before their very wide eyes. Their massed singing of 'Shosholoza', instigated by an introductory mention by Bono, was a heartfelt gesture of respect and gratitude to a band for whom rock music, political awareness and universal concern are 'One' and the same thing.
Setlists, we got 'em
The full setlist of U2's Cape Town concert at Greenpoint Stadium has been reprinted for your completist satisfaction at the bottom of this page.
Please pop over to The Show Must Go Online for a full review of the concert. This, our new and interactive "send-us-your-review-of-anything" Alive site finally makes its appearance this week and you are urged to contribute your blessings or bile as the mood swing takes you. Quick flash: SABC3 will screen the Jo'burg U2 concert live on Saturday at 10pm. Also, keep an eye open at Ellis Park for actor Stephen Dorff, who is starring in the new Phil Joannou fillum 'Entropy', a romantic comedy about a TV cameraman whose personal life suffers when he has to go on tour with U2. Joannou, who is known for his work on 'U2: Rattle And Hum', has been filming sections of 'Entropy' on the SA tour.
The biggest South African band of the moment (sales-wise), Just Jinger, grabbed the prestigious support slot at the U2 concert and contributed a controlled, competent and short set. Their stage announcements were humble and grateful and they played a timeous and appropriate cover version of the (bet you thought you'd heard the last of him for a while) Rodriguez classic 'Sugar Man', which prompted the first massed singalong of the evening. Just Jinger actually namechecked Rodriguez as one of their major influences on the sleevenotes of their best selling 1997 debut album 'All Comes Round'. When they heard that Rodriguez was not only alive but preparing to tour SA, they began including it in their live sets. At one point, Rodriguez had expressed an interest in Just Jinger playing the support slot on his tour but as fate would have it the tour coincided with Just Jinger's promotional sortie to the USA and Canada. The purpose of this trip was to convince the American music powers that be to give them the shot at the American market they feel they deserve.
The Jingers are releasing their new EP 'Something For Now' this week and it includes their version of 'Sugar Man', so, we have the not impossible situation whereby they could bring the music of Rodriguez to the attention of the North American listening public. Coupled with the extraordinary success of the SA tour and the global attention this event has received via the Internet, Rodriguez's career may soon receive the belated acclaim it always deserved.
Urban Creep, the tough little rock band from Durban, may have splintered into its individual parts, but these shards of suss have been regrouping, forming new alliances and starting to make their presences felt in the SA rock arena. Chris Letcher is recording and performing with the "infantile terrible" of the local scene, Matthew van der Wank…er, sorry, Want (snigger, snigger). These two jokers released the awful and unfunny 'e.p. Tombi' but I am assured that their new album will be much better (can't be verse!). Ross Campbell is adding his drumming talents to his new band Benguela, which features ex-Dynamics guitarist Alex Bozas.
The Jury is in
But the 'Creep' to watch is Brendan Jury whose viola sounds, vocals and manic moves have now been welded to the legendary multi-talents of the former Kalahari Surfer Warrick Sony. Their band is called Trans Sky and I was fortunate enough to catch their show last week at the Riverclub. They were opening for Sons Of Trout, who were rounding off their national Campus City tour. Trans Sky will soon be releasing two new albums and I would suggest you start saving now as this band could be the inspiration that drags SA music into the new millennium. Sony is an unlimited source of sound-scapes, styles and ideas. Jury, who looks like Luc Bresson's concept of a rock star with his short-cropped, peroxided hair, wriggly moves and theatrical vocals is more the front man and adds touches of viola and keyboards to their intruiging mixture of electronica, acoustic Africana and strange lyrics.
A load of carp
Unfortunately this eye-opening set was mostly wasted on the crowd who had come to welcome home the Sons Of Trout and lounged around on the floor in front of the stage, saving their energy for the wild Celtic-punk and tuneless racket that characterises a Sons Of Trout concert. Some wag behind me referred to them quite accurately as "a load of carp". Still, after a gem-packed set, Trans Sky finished off with their Pet Shop / Erasure-ish version of 'Can't Take My Eyes Off You' and the best song off Urban Creep's 'Tightroper' album, 'Slow Thighs'. Warrick Sony has moved his famous Shifty Studios down to Cape Town and it shouldn't be too long before some great music starts pouring out of there, beginning with the Trans Sky material.
The annual and very worthwhile Barleycorn Music Club Festival will be happening on the nights of Friday 20 and Saturday 21 March at the Maynardville Open Air Theatre in Wynberg Park. Among the artists appearing will be Benguela, Roger Lucey, Dave Ledbetter, Woodshed, Landscape Prayers and, um, Sons of Trout. The Wingerdstok festival is also happening from 27-29 March at Antoniesvlei in Wellington; these and other musical events are well documented in the Gig Guide. (Note: the guide is shortly to become national.) Catch up on all the Reviews you may have missed and some strange interviews too at our Lager Mentality site. Forthcoming attractions include a verbal assault by Daniele Pascal and the thoughts of chairman Koos (what do you mean, which Koos?). All the music mentioned in this column is just a click away from your purchasing finger at One World, still the best SA CD online store on the Net!
There's the usual wit, flair and pre-Oscar thoughts at the Bioscope and here's another gratuitous plug for the site that gives you the chance to express your thoughts and feelings about any form of media that moved you in either direction, that's right folks, step right up to the greatest Show Must Go Online on earth. Well, on the Net at least. Both of you know what I mean.
Last thought on that Irish band. If you still haven't found what you're looking for, then why are you looking where the streets have no name?
Stephen 'Sugar' Segerman
Amuzine Wingerdstok competition: 3 'Wingerdstok' CD box-sets to be won!
1. What is a "wingerdstok"?
2. What are the dates and venue for this year's fest?
3. Name 3 bands playing this year
Send your answers to firstname.lastname@example.org. (Closing date: March 31). The winners' names will be published in Beat Speak in 2 weeks' time. You can find most of the answers at the Trippy Grape website.
Five albums guaranteed to dissolve your earwax:
New World Music - A Journey Through The Townships
This well-intentioned and deftly executed Cape township sampler is essential and excellent. To be reviewed shortly but don't wait, go buy it anyway.
Various Bands -'Tea 'n Tequila'
This is the long-awaited compilation from the Joburg based indie label Tea Time Music, featuring their four new bands FUZiGiSH, Tripping Billy, Ethel My Love and Mao. Review to follow.
Pearl Jam - 'Yield'
Never been a big fan but now I am. This is being spoken of as their big one! 'Given To Fly' is a great single.
Morcheeba - 'Big Calm'
The just-released second album from this trip-hoppy collective and if you don't know them from "Who Can You Trust", their first offering, then just buy both.
U2 - 'The Joshua Tree'
Been listening to all their albums but this one, to me, is still the finest of a fine bunch. The image of those Roy Lichtenstein pop-art jets exploding across the massive video screen while the band played 'Bullet The Blue Sky' will live in my memory forever!
The full setlist from the U2 Cape Town Concert:
Cape Town, South Africa
March 16, 1998
Opening Act: Just Jinger
[Taped Pop Muzik by M (Steve Osbourne '97 mix)] / Mofo / I Will Follow
/ Gone /Even Better Than the Real Thing / Last Night on Earth
/ Until the End of the World /New Year's Day / Pride (In the Name of Love)
/ I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For-Stand By Me-Shosholoza/Bad
/ Staring at the Sun/ Sunday Bloody Sunday/ Bullet the Blue Sky / Please /
Where the Streets Have No Name
Encore One [Taped Lemon Perfecto Mix [1997 edit]] / Discotheque/
If You Wear That Velvet Dress / With or Without You
Encore Two: Hold Me, Thrill Me, Kiss Me, Kill Me /
[Outro: Never Tear Us Apart by INXS]
Stayin' Alive in Discotheque
The Lion Sleeps Tonight in Bad
Life During Wartime in Discotheque
Song Origin by Album:
Unforgettable Fire: One
Joshua Tree: Three
Rattle and Hum: Zero
Achtung Baby: Four
U2's first trip to the continent of Africa is marked by
the singing of a snip of 'Shosholoza' and 'The Lion Sleeps Tonight'
With thanks to Live U2 Concert Transcript Websplice at:
by stephen 'Sugar' Segerman