Seven years ago come July, I started LOUD HORIZON as a kind of ‘hobby’; something to do during a period of unemployment. As time progressed however, it became more, much more, than that. An obsession, some might say! Virtually every spare moment I had was devoted to reading e-mails and band biographies; listening to CDs and then writing about them. I’d frequently get up at 4am to do some writing before starting work (I had by this time formed my own Petcare Service business) and then spend another hour or so on the blog at the end of the working day.
It was a challenge – a very enjoyable challenge, and of course I received lots of great music (and some not so great!) for nothing. What more could a Scotsman want?!
However (back to THE PLIMPTONS) when writing that article last week, it struck me just how many bands that I’ve become friendly with over the seven years are no longer playing together.
Everything changes. Everyone moves on.
And so am I.
It’s been great fun dealing with so many good people. I’ve had the chance to meet and chat and drink beer with loads of great bands (special mention for BAD FOR LAZARUS who were so friendly and down to earth; BO NINGEN who were true gentlemen; Andrea Zollo of PRETTY GIRLS MAKE GRAVES who was an absolute delight, and the late POLY STYRENE who took time, despite her very advanced failing health, to talk to me.)
Oh – and I can’t forget to mention the mental FIGHT LIKE APES who had a capacity King Tuts crowd chanting my name!!
(But then, it’s really unfair to single out a few bands as I’ve never met any at all who were anything other than polite and accommodating.)
Over the years LOUD HORIZON (and my ARTROCKER MAGAZINE connection) has led to many bands stopping over at our house when touring and passing through Glasgow / Scotland. There have been so many – every one of them respectful and a pleasure to host – regular visitors, back in the day, YOU SAY PARTY! and THE HOT PUPPIES in particular.
And as the blog developed its integrity and reputation for honest reviews, it rose to the dizzy height of ranking #66 out of over 12,000 music blogs registered with the Technorati directory. (It generally hovers around the #150 / #200 mark.) LOUD HORIZON has recently also been ‘accepted’ onto The Hype Machine, which seemingly carries a bit of kudos.
But the time has now come for me to catch up with with some things that have been neglected due to lack of available time: the last two years’ issues of Record Collector for a start; my Spanish and Mandarin language courses; the DVD Christmas presents from the past five years; the three books I’m currently reading on North Korea (honestly – how topical am I?!) and of course my own personal record collection and the underground Japanese psych vinyl albums that I’ve been buying!
I should at this point also mention my long-suffering wife, Diane (who fortunately remembers what I look like because we went on holiday in January) as she’s spent so long these past few years alone watching re-runs of ‘Location Location, Location,’ in the next room!
BUT ….. and here comes the good bit – our BRETT, my younger son, has volunteered to keep the blog going! Woo Hoo!!
Brett presently works at The Garage nightclub here in Glasgow and was formerly drummer in a pop-punk band that frequently played support slots to Twin Atlantic as well as some of America’s big commercial punk outfits like Zebrahead, Aquabats, Army of Freshmen and others. They supported the likes of the excellent Failsafe and Sonic Boom Six from here in UK and also toured around Scotland and Northern England as well as a mini-tour around the Stockholm area of Sweden. So Brett has a wide experience of what its like to play in an aspiring band and an appreciation of what is required to ‘get noticed.’
Me? My intention is to return to dabbling in the buying and selling of vinyl records – purely on a less demanding ‘hobby’ basis, you understand. (Watch this space in seven years from now ….!)
So – thanks to everyone: bands / artists; record labels; PR Companies and to all the loyal readers of LOUD HORIZON (there are some!) for their support over the years. It’s been a blast!
It’s all yours, Brett!
Please just bear with us a day or two so we can get everything transferred over, and LOUD HORIZON will be back.
All unanswered e-mails up to Sunday 7th April have been / will be deleted, so there is a fresh start. Apologies!