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Andy
07-11-2008, 04:27 PM
Right, you've had your fill. The CD should be ready for September.

Jebus
07-19-2008, 12:33 AM
I would like to give constructive commentary, but I don't really have any. I just like it. I was going to ask you if you were a post-rock band because of the lack of vocals. Then I realized I should read the description first. The music is really interest even without the vocals, so I image is going to be even more so when you mixed them in.

Homer
07-19-2008, 12:50 AM
I've always opened up this thread with the mindset of checking out the music and commenting on it, but I've never gotten around to it. But not this time! Well... not next time. Since it's late right now.

If you want more people to comment, I suggest putting on a site that'll stream it.

WebDudette
07-19-2008, 03:37 AM
Whats this about Daughters?

Checking you guys out now.

Homer
07-19-2008, 03:30 PM
Alright, so I've finally listened to it. Here's what I have to say:

Awesome. I like the way it kinda sounds 'archaic' (not the best word to use) where it seems like each instrument is doing something different. There's not really much to say here, as it's good, but if I had to give some criticism, I'd have to say that for some reason I keep thinking that the left guitar on Daggers and Swords seems out of tune. I don't know, might just be me.

How are you guys going about recording this? In a studio, or by yourself?

Andy
07-19-2008, 06:13 PM
It's good that your main criticism is that. The daggers and swords take is the take we used for the drums; the guitars and bass were just there for me to drum along to. The guitars and bass have since been recorded properly and are very much in tune.

The way we're recording it is pretty shambolic:
The drums were recorded at a mate's studio about an hour's drive away from Birmingham
The bass was recorded round our producer's house
The guitars were both recorded at our practice room, in the middle of the night so no other bands were around to pollute our airwaves
The vocals are going to be recorded at another bands practice room, as it is solely their place and there will be no other interruptions
The CD is being mixed at some guys house.

It's great that you like it though, and the vocals are being recorded a week tomorrow.

Andy
09-29-2008, 07:50 PM
And I felt the obligation to write a tour blog and post it on here.

CONKS & SHAPES DO A FEW PLACES AROUND THE UK, WITH VARIED SUCCESS.

Day 1
Bar Rouge, Halifax.

After a good 4 hour drive from Birmingham to Halifax (the North’s hub of the Credit Crunch, and home to 80% of England’s population of platinum-blonde girls), we were left somewhat bitter. We arrived at around 7 to what was essentially very nice, well-presented and fairly posh (in a mutton-dressed-as-lamb kind of way) restaurant/bar that was tidying up after its dinnertime carvery. Sounds pretty fucking rockin’ already, no?

No.

As soon as we stepped through the doors, we had that sinking feeling of impending doom that you get before something terrible happens (you know, the sensation that terminally ill people get before they kick it). The music was a mix between chart-dance songs and 90s Hit Parade rock, and with the likes of Chad ‘fucking’ Kroeger* and Girls Aloud on plasma screens dotted around the place.

Anyway, now that I’ve set the scene I may as well talk about the gig. We (Conquistadors) went on at about 9.30 in front of a crowd of maybe eight or nine people (at a push). And that includes the three members of Shapes, Wiz, the two soundguys and the barmaid. After stumbling and stuttering our way through our set, we discovered that the Bar Rouge faithful had taken umbrage to the volume of our songs and we were asked, in no uncertain terms, to leave. This is shambolic enough, but what really got on our tits was the fact that they insisted on only paying for the one band. Surely it’s only polite that if you book two bands and then decide to cancel the show after one, you would pay at least some of the fee for both bands? This must be how they operate Up North**.

One particularly humorous event of the evening was a middle-aged rocker (in a Beatles t-shirt) announcing that the Conks were the ‘worst band he’s ever heard’, and he must know what he’s talking about because not only had he ‘seen more rock bands than we have had hot dinners’, but more crucially, ‘his wife is a punk’***.

The night wasn’t a complete disaster however, as an old mate of Ad’s said we could crash at his place in Leeds. So, a huge thanks to Beej for changing a pretty shit night into a pretty fucking good night complete with lager, cold pasties and Wii golf!

Ah well, one show down, four to go. Birmingham tomorrow so at least we’ll have home advantage.

* You know, the Nickleback singer who looks a bit like Jesus would if he was Canadian. And a tramp.
** After a few phone calls to the real manager, we have been promised money for this. Jim’s fixed it for us.
*** Seriously, what a fucking prick.

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Day 2
Bar Academy, Birmingham

After the shitheap that was Halifax, we were almost catatonically relieved to get back to Birmingham and play a real music venue. I like the Bar Academy: it’s always well-organised, there’s always a good crowd and unlike Halifax, they appreciate that when they book a ‘rock’ band, that they could well get more than an Oasis covers band. Also, I don’t know if it was just me, but the girl doing the sound was alluringly attractive. I’m telling you, there’s nothing sexier than a girl in headphones who knows her way around a sound desk. Anyway, I digress.

The gig itself went without much of a problem: Gav broke his snare, James broke a string and I forgot how to count to four, but other than that it was grand. Blue Nation and Million Empire were on the bill with us, and both played good sets so I think all in all, Birmingham was a pretty successful night. So successful, in fact, that I can’t think of anything else to write.

Next up: Harrogate!

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Day 3(a)
The Black Swan, Harrogate

So, back Up North for this one, to the wealthy spa town of Harrogate. Tonight’s venue: a family-run bed and breakfast which has only previously played host to a collection of folky singer-songwriter types. Remember that feeling of impending doom I had in Halifax? Well it’s back, and this time there’s a side-order of anxiety.

Despite this initial trepidation, the sound check went without problem. The landlady was fine with us playing, the volume wasn’t too over the top, and she didn’t mind us drinking the boxes of Fosters that organiser-man Josh had provided; she even said that we could stay for as long as we like. Good times!

Then she flipped.

Now, when I say ‘flipped’, I mean she went completely fucking bananas. At some point, after sound check and before Pattern were going on, a stool fell over at the back of the room. I can only assume that in Harrogate, stool-vandalism is a crime punishable by death, because she went completely mental and kicked us out. Seriously, we got kicked out for knocking over a stool. Not quite on the same level of rock and roll outrages as, say, driving a Rolls Royce into a swimming pool, but it got up her just the same.

So, after half an hour of bemused looks and failed arguments we left, only to discover that there was a club in Harrogate centre which would host the gig. So, off we went.

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Day 3(b)
Crabtrees, Harrogate

After our peculiar ordeal at the Black Swan, we were understandably jaded when we arrived at this new venue, but lit up as soon as we discovered that it was proudly touted as ‘the cheapest bar in Harrogate’. Things were looking up.

We got in, unpacked, got told off by the sound man for having too much bass in the guitars* and got on with it. Unfortunately, due to half of the evening already being eaten up by the drunken mentalist at the Black Swan, we could only play around 4 songs each. Pattern started, and were really good: energetic, catchy and all-around good lads; Shapes then took the stage and did their thing with the usual emphatic spectacular enthusiasm, followed by us rocking out our 4-song set. I wouldn’t say we went down like a storm there, in fact, we were hated by a good two-thirds of the clientele in there** but my god, it was good to actually play that night.

After that, organiser Josh gracefully let us crash at his house, where we topped off a troublesome evening with a pretty amazing night. More about that another time.

* I would normally have a go at him now for being a smart-arsed prick, but he supplied us with the P.A. at the last minute at 10pm on a Saturday night, so fair play.
* There should be a picture somewhere of some dude pulling the best face I’ve ever seen in my life when Shapes were on. It was like he had a piss-flavoured Haribo tangfastic stuck in his teeth, I really hope someone took a picture.

Next up: Nottingham!

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Day 4
The Running Horses, Nottingham

After the organiser of the Bristol gig went AWOL, this show turned out to be the final leg of the tour, and ended somewhat fittingly.

We arrived at about 5pm, tired, hungover, full of Chinese buffet, yet fairly optimistic about returning to the Midlands. WE arrived at 5, but the LOCAL band from NOTTINGHAM couldn’t make it there until 8. Go figure.

The show itself started at around 9.30 (because the guitarist for the aforementioned local band was stuck in traffic*). The first band** were what you would get if you combined the worst bits of Oasis, Ocean Colour Scene and a variety of other mid-90’s Hit Parade rock. In fact, they would go down a fucking storm if they ever played in Halifax.

Anyway, thanks to the late-running guitarist and the lead singer’s ego, The First Band played for a good 40 minutes. This meant that yet again, Shapes and the Conks only had time to play four song sets.

It didn’t matter anyway, as both bands played arguably our best sets of the tour. We certainly entertained some massively drunk Scandinavian*** who was rocking out to, well, everything. I mean, was headbanging to The First Band: say no more. Unfortunately, he missed Shapes’ set as he got kicked out after falling on his arse a couple of times, then trying to hijack Oz’s microphone. Classy chap.

* Funny how he got ‘caught in traffic’ driving across the city, yet we drove from Harrogate and made it there for 5
** I say ‘first band’ because I can’t for the life of me remember their name. I shall refer to them from now on as “The First Band”
*** At least I think he was Scandinavian. He was a tall blond metalhead – where else would he be from?

So there we are; a whirlwind 4-date tour of England, that had a 50% success rate, and where we were hated by people in 75% of the places we went. Rock and roll has never been so glamorous.

What we’ve learnt:

o Halifax is rubbish
o Female sound engineers are quite sexy
o “Seventeen year olds aren’t what they used to be”
o The film ‘Airplane’ isn’t so funny when you’re actually on the plane
o Arguing with an alcoholic landlady is a fruitless pursuit
o It’s impossible for me to look normal in any picture or film
o Harrogate Pizza Hut has a height restriction
o Malibu doesn’t make for a particularly good lager chaser

Vera
09-30-2008, 12:06 AM
Merged threads; one topic per band, babes.

Andy
09-30-2008, 03:32 AM
Cheers, I couldn't find this thread last night