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22 July, 2009

Nothing, like something, happens anywhere

So said Philip Larkin and the phrase popped into my head as we were coming up England by a different route (rather than a railway line) yesterday afternoon. However it's definitely something that will be happening tomorrow and Friday nights and it won't be happening just anywhere but at the Static Gallery in Roscoe Lane, Liverpool where the Wild Swans will be performing their first live shows for over twenty years. An Occultation representative (myself) popped in to wish the band well at their rehearsal last night and was treated to the spectacular sight of the Wild Swans in full flight running through their set list. Les Pattinson has fitted in perfectly and he and drummer Steve Beswick make up one hell of a rhythm section, over the top of which comes the twin-guitar assault of Ricky Maymi and Mike Mooney, with Henry Priestman standing in for Ged Quinn on keyboards and doing an incredible job at short notice. As for Mr Simpson, P, well, he clearly knows he's got a real band behind him and is fired-up and firing on all cylinders. I can't, of course, reveal any details of the set list but I can't imagine that any Wild Swans fan could be disappointed as they're representing all the records, from the classic Zoo debut 12" all the way through to the recent - and may I say equally classic? - Occultation 10" including tracks from both Sire albums, plus a taste of what's still to come. Do not make any mistake: this isn't a nostalgia trip, this is a band at the top of its game and not to be missed. 

There are a few tickets left for tomorrow night's gig (see the link to the Wild Swans' own website further down this page) and there might be one or two (but literally no more than that) left for Friday, although they might've gone by now. So if you fancy witnessing a slice of history in both the making and the telling then this is your chance. 

After these two special events the band will be going back into the studio to do some more work on the forthcoming Coldest Winter For A Hundred Years album which we hope to release later this year, although we may well have another single for you before then. There are no plans for any more live dates before Christmas at the earliest so, seriously, don't miss this. I've seen what this new incarnation of the Wild Swans can do in a rehearsal studio, a fairly sterile environment at the best of times. Just wait until we get them onto a stage and in front of an audience. Just over 24 hours to go until we do precisely that. 

Finally we would just like to thank some of the fans who've gone above and beyond the call of duty to be here. There are a couple of people who are travelling from the United States, we had a message from someone else who's coming from Japan and another from Australia as well as a number of people from Europe and from all over the UK. Our own journey up to Merseyside took almost 8 hours for reasons to dull to go into but I feel like a lightweight compared to some of these hero(ine)s. 

We'll report on the shows once we get home early next week. Any orders for records we receive while we're away will be despatched as soon as we get back.