I have two main rules for choosing my gigs;

  1. Where possible, only listen to music written that very morning. Give bands that play their old stuff a wide berth.
  2. NEVER watch a band that starts songs “1, 2, 3, 4”.
  3. Avoid any gig where the audience members are wearing “Friends” T-shirts, ironically or not.

So I left Mrs RM and the boys to Sophie-Ellis Bextor and The Kooks and headed for Tramlines Fringe.

No better place to start than at the venerable Washington, which you’ll be told was once owned by the Pulp drummer more times than you’re told that Dave Whelan once broke his leg in the Cup Final (twice would be unlucky).

I arrived just in time to shout a request for a pint of Moonshine (difficult in a mask) and was then assaulted by this (play loud);

Nervous Pills (Facebook says “Alternative/Grunge/Rock trio from Sheffield” ) stuck in the corner doing their best to knock the walls down, or at least my mask off.

What a wondrous noise at my first gig since March 2020, and a lovely mixed crowd who didn’t ask for “Common People” or “Astronimy Domine” or whatever students listen to in Endcliffe these days.

Glitter ball, too.

Free music, cheap pint of cool Abbeydale which would have been better in glass but you know the rules.

I stayed 20 minutes, then gave my ears a little rest. I do have some ear protectors I bought for the Prolapse gig I went to a few years back, but I lost them.

Shame, as the next pub was even louder.


  1. The trouble with restricting yourself to only listening to new music, is you subject yourself to an awful lot of dross, just to hear the occasional piece of brilliance.

    It’s rather like craft beer fanatics who are constantly in search of the new, and the novel. In their pursuit of something different they pass over lots of excellent pints, just because they’ve already “ticked” them. In short, they are missing out.

    Had I been in Sheffield that weekend, I would have gone for the wonderful Sophie Ellis-Bextor, and passed on the over-loud, out of tune, garage-grunge stuff – but each to their own.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. No worries Martin, although with no signs yet of son and heir continuing the family line, I don’t qualify for that moniker yet!

        Liked by 1 person

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