Skip to main content

Neu! Reekie! #1 - Michael Rother, Lydia Lunch, Fire Engines, The Honey Farm

Light on the Shore @ Leith Theatre
Five stars

A gnomic Michael Rother is sitting in the balcony when Dunbar-based all-female trio The Honey Farm open the first of two nights at Edinburgh International Festival’s Light on the Shore strand curated by Edinburgh’s premiere multi-arts night Neu! Reekie! with a set of potty-mouthed hip-hop. What the veteran pioneer of German kosmiche music makes of them is anybody’s guess, though the entire evening must be pretty bewildering for him. Rother confesses later that the night’s name being inspired by Neu!, the duo he led over three albums in the 1970s alongside drummer Klaus Dinger as being “slightly strange.”

Neu! Reekie! co-founder Kevin Williamson has even learnt German for the occasion. The effect of this as Williamson and fellow mine host Michael Pedersen tag-team their introductions is a little bit Eurovision. With Rother headlining a night that also features New York’s punk spoken-word provocateur Lydia Lunch and the allegedly final reformation by Fire Engines, arguably one of Edinburgh’s most influential bands, this is Neu! Reekie! showing its roots while remaining majestically in the moment.

“Hello, teenage Leith,” says Fire Engines frontman Davy Henderson by way of greeting. Henderson is wearing a silver anorak and not much else, as if he’s survived a marathon and now needs to cover his modesty. Fire Engines’ core quartet is joined in the second of two ferocious fifteen-minute sets by former Josef K and Orange Juice guitarist Malcolm Ross. Playing either side of Lunch, this forms a conceptual bridge between auld reekie and the New York No Wave primitivism that sired Lunch’s angry litany.  

Rother is accompanied by a drummer and a second guitarist for almost ninety minutes of
propulsive sci-fi proto-techno melodies to dance, drive and disco to. There’s an infectious warmth to the hypnotic motorik rhythms that may be old, but sounds forever Neu!

The Herald, August 14th 2018



Popular posts from this blog

Losing Touch With My Mind - Psychedelia in Britain 1986-1990

DISC 1 1. THE STONE ROSES   -  Don’t Stop 2. SPACEMEN 3   -  Losing Touch With My Mind (Demo) 3. THE MODERN ART   -  Mind Train 4. 14 ICED BEARS   -  Mother Sleep 5. RED CHAIR FADEAWAY  -  Myra 6. BIFF BANG POW!   -  Five Minutes In The Life Of Greenwood Goulding 7. THE STAIRS  -  I Remember A Day 8. THE PRISONERS  -  In From The Cold 9. THE TELESCOPES   -  Everso 10. THE SEERS   -  Psych Out 11. MAGIC MUSHROOM BAND  -  You Can Be My L-S-D 12. THE HONEY SMUGGLERS  - Smokey Ice-Cream 13. THE MOONFLOWERS  -  We Dig Your Earth 14. THE SUGAR BATTLE   -  Colliding Minds 15. GOL GAPPAS   -  Albert Parker 16. PAUL ROLAND  -  In The Opium Den 17. THE THANES  -  Days Go Slowly By 18. THEE HYPNOTICS   -  Justice In Freedom (12" Version) 1. THE STONE ROSES    Don’t Stop ( Silvertone   ORE   1989) The trip didn’t quite start here for what sounds like Waterfall played backwards on The Stone Roses’ era-defining eponymous debut album, but it sounds

Big Gold Dreams – A Story of Scottish Independent Music 1977-1989

Disc 1 1. THE REZILLOS (My Baby Does) Good Sculptures (12/77)  2. THE EXILE Hooked On You (8/77) 3. DRIVE Jerkin’ (8/77) 4. VALVES Robot Love (9/77) 5. P.V.C. 2 Put You In The Picture (10/77) 6. JOHNNY & THE SELF ABUSERS Dead Vandals (11/77) 7. BEE BEE CEE You Gotta Know Girl (11/77) 8. SUBS Gimme Your Heart (2/78) 9. SKIDS Reasons (No Bad NB 1, 4/78) 10. FINGERPRINTZ Dancing With Myself (1/79)  11. THE ZIPS Take Me Down (4/79) 12. ANOTHER PRETTY FACE All The Boys Love Carrie (5/79)  13. VISITORS Electric Heat (5/79) 14. JOLT See Saw (6/79) 15. SIMPLE MINDS Chelsea Girl (6/79) 16. SHAKE Culture Shock (7/79) 17. HEADBOYS The Shape Of Things To Come (7/79) 18. FIRE EXIT Time Wall (8/79) 19. FREEZE Paranoia (9/79) 20. FAKES Sylvia Clarke (9/79) 21. TPI She’s Too Clever For Me (10/79) 22. FUN 4 Singing In The Showers (11/79) 23. FLOWERS Confessions (12/79) 24. TV21 Playing With Fire (4/80) 25. ALEX FERGUSSON Stay With Me Tonight (1980) 1. THE REZILL

Edinburgh Rocks – The Capital's Music Scene in the 1950s and Early 1960s

Edinburgh has always been a vintage city. Yet, for youngsters growing up in the shadow of World War Two as well as a pervading air of tight-lipped Calvinism, they were dreich times indeed. The founding of the Edinburgh International Festival in 1947 and the subsequent Fringe it spawned may have livened up the city for a couple of weeks in August as long as you were fans of theatre, opera and classical music, but the pubs still shut early, and on Sundays weren't open at all. But Edinburgh too has always had a flipside beyond such official channels, and, in a twitch-hipped expression of the sort of cultural duality Robert Louis Stevenson recognised in his novel, Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde, a vibrant dance-hall scene grew up across the city. Audiences flocked to emporiums such as the Cavendish in Tollcross, the Eldorado in Leith, The Plaza in Morningside and, most glamorous of all due to its revolving stage, the Palais in Fountainbridge. Here the likes of Joe Loss and Ted Heath broug