What Happened?

Hopefully my flu symptoms subside enough for me to head off to Manchester tonight to catch one of a brace of H2O shows in the UK before they head into Europe to partake on the Persistence Tour with Ignite and Terror amongst others.

Unbelievably it was back in 1995 when I first saw H2O, opening up for CIV and Sick Of It All. Back then frontman Toby Morse was a roadie for Sick Of It All and was often seen participating with the band during their encores.

Besides a single  H2O show in Birmingham during 2000, last years appearance as part of the Slam Dunk Festival was my first time seeing them in 15 years. They’ve been to the UK on a pretty regular basis, so I have no idea why I’ve not seen them more often.

Last years brief set on one of the outdoor stages was a definite highlight of the day’s proceedings. It’s just a shame that with these multiple staged events crowds ebb and flow throughout the day where bands inevitably clash. The bands biggest misgiving with the event was the presence of the safety barrier, as they actively encourage stage diving. Apparently tonight there is no barrier in Sound Control, so it could get interesting. I guarantee there will be a handful of stage divers who want to hog the limelight and prance about on stage like some self important diva, rather than getting on and off in double quick time.

What Happened? is the closing track on 2008’s Nothing To Prove album, with guest vocals from Sick Of It All frontman Lou Koller and Matt Skiba from Alkaline Trio.



I know the poster below is for their London show, but I think it’s such a cool interpretation of The Clash cover and a clever idea it needs to be shown for prosperity more than anything else. I’m surprise it’s never been done before.


Live Arena 2016.2

Illness has struck again, but this is what I have in the diary for this week. If I get to them all is questionable. 

Monday 11th – Manchester Sound Control

New York hardcore band, now by way of California, H2O visit these shores again. I first saw them supporting Sick Of It All way back in 1995, and before the Slam Dunk Festival last year I’d only seen them once in the intervening 20 years. Flu be gone!

Wednesday 13th – Manchester Ritz

Canadian alternative rockers Three Days Grace step foot on British shores for a rare visit. Two British shows in the last two years – Download Festival and London. Prior to those nothing since 2004. Wednesday should see me break my 3DG duck. 

Friday 15th – Birmingham Town Hall

Musician, writer, talk show host, actor – ex Black Flag frontman brings his spoken word show to the UK for the first time in four years. By all accounts I’ve been told it’s something that needs to be experienced, so again another first. 


Saturday 16th – Manchester Club Academy

If I go to this one then it’ll be due to me being the designated driver for the night. Therion used to be a death metal band, but jumped on the symphonic bandwagon like so many other European bands. 

Live Arena 9

Well this weekends superb Nightwish extravaganza brought 2015’s gig diary to a close and now I’m looking forward to 2016.

So far plenty of bands to look forward to seeing over the forthcoming twelve months including a trip to Canada in April and a few continental European visits potentially. But first Christmas and New Year shenanigans to endure!

A few of next years shows I’ll be catching.