Wednesday, 4 May 2011

FAC251 - Painfully Good

Factory - the new Haçienda?
FAC 251 - A different kind of venue
When I found out we had a gig booked at Manchester's FAC251 I couldn't help but feel a huge sense of pride in the city I live in. For those who don't know why, I shall give you a brief history lesson. Back in the 1980s Manchester music was growing. A new record company founded by Tony Wilson opened up a whole new world of music from Joy Division and New Order to the Happy Mondays and James. As part of Factory records New Order opened a club called 'the Haçienda'. I won't bore you with the details but basically it was a world of messiness, drugs and - above all things - music.

The day before the gig...
Outside it looks industrial
... I felt a bit rough with a slightly soar throat. I woke up the next morning after an early night feeling like a sheet of razor blades were slashing at the inside of my unnaturally dry throat. And I felt achey. Great. So I texted our manager, Pete, saying "I think I have tonsillitis, tonight is gonna be a struggle. I'm definitely not singing!"

...How wrong I was!
Inside looks similar to the old Haçienda
After chewing on a fair few painkillers and spraying some throat spray I entered the venue. To say it is run differently to other venues is an understatement. When we usually play gigs we are told to sell a minimum amount of tickets and then (and only then) we will get a small cut of the money. At FAC251 however we didn't have to sell a thing - not a sausage. That was nice! So we got on with the soundcheck - Pete brought me some vitamin tablets which tasted like gone-off Calpol! We then played some songs and I attempted to sing into the mic...

It bloody hurt.
Wristband - Artist: No Really. I am...
Never before have I enjoyed a gig while wishing I could just curl up into bed, but this night was different. We started playing to about 15 people who, collectively as a band, we all knew! By then end we were playing to a sizeable crowd (probably around 90 people) who were cheering and applauding despite my croaky attempts at backing vocals! The vibe was amazing. Some gigs just feel right and this one felt electric! But, by the end I was tasting blood and my throat was on fire! Not so good.

Since the gig...
Matt at the gig.
I've recovered and my throat feels much better (thanks for asking!). Also FAC251 have got back in touch... they want us to headline a night in July. Can it be part of the next Manchester music movement?

Hopefully it already is.

1 comment:

  1. I love Fac251! I bet the gig was ace. I will definitely be at your next Factory gig with a few friends! Glad you're feeling better :-) xxx