Category Archives: Music

Top Of The Pops: Big Country Live At King Tut’s in Glasgow, July 7, 2011

Hot off the press, here are a few videos I shot during Big Country‘s brilliant gig at King Tut’s in Glasgow last night.

With original members Bruce Watson, Tony Butler and Mark Brzezicki now joined by The Alarm‘s Mike Peters on vocals – taking over from his friend, the late Stuart Adamson – (plus Bruce’s son Jamie on guitar), this is not quite the same as the original Big Country and never will be, given the large shoes Adamson left to fill.

However, this line-up is undoubtedly as close as you could possibly hope to get to recapturing the spirit of the band in the glory of its 80s hey-day.

Mike Peters, still gigging with his own band (also a favourite of the Choob‘s) in addition to his new Big Country duties, is respectful and worthy of Adamson’s legacy and has the voice, personality and stage presence that has already won over the legion of Big Country fans, who have taken him to their hearts.

This week, we had a rare chance to see a band of Big Country‘s stature in a small, cosy, intimate venue when they played in front of around 250 fans at the legendary King Tut’s in Glasgow as a warm-up for their T In The Park appearance this weekend. Enjoy!


Fields Of Fire



In A Big Country

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Filed under Music, Top Of The Pops Thursday

Top Of The Pops: Green Day’s American Idiot – Broadway Cast In Session

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The Choob is back on the air! Apologies for the unscheduled summer hiatus over the last couple of months. Part of the reason for it was an extended trip to New York (right in the middle of the heatwave in the city – that sort of thing’s really not good for a Scottish chap!)

Just a few weeks before I flew out, I went to see Green Day‘s latest gig in Glasgow. It was the first time I’ve seen the band live and was blown away by their outstanding performance.

As I was on a Green Day high from that, I was determined to make sure I went to see the American Idiot musical on Broadway while I in the Big Apple and was so glad I made the effort (and splashed out on a ticket) as the stage show was, in its way, just as good as seeing the band play live.

If you live in New York or are in town while American Idiot is still playing, I really can’t recommend it highly enough. The energy of the performers, the clever staging and set design, the vivid storytelling using pretty much only the lyrics of the songs, the wonderful musical arrangements that paint some of Green Day’s greatest songs in a whole new light – it all adds up to an astonishing theatrical experience (and probably the only broadway musical that doesn’t feature a superhero The Choob is ever likely to go and see).

If you haven’t seen it, or want to relive its genius, the cast of American Idiot have just recorded a few of the songs from the show for AOL. And here are the vids:

American Idiot:

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Are We The Waiting:

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Last Night On Earth:

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Good Riddance (Time Of Your Life):

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Filed under Music, Theatre, Top Of The Pops Thursday

Top Of The Pops: The Doctor Rocks Glastonbury (ft. Orbital)

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We’ve seen The Doctor dance. We’ve seen The Doctor kiss.

Now watch the 11th Doctor (Matt Smith) rock the 2010 Glastonbury Festival with his own theme tune (with a little help from Orbital).


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Filed under Current and recent TV shows, Music, Top Of The Pops Thursday, TV Themes

Lost Week: The Best Lost Fan Vids – Part One

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Here are a few of the best fan videos created during Lost‘s six-year run.

First, Lost meets 24 to show the crash of Oceanic flight 815 from multiple viewpoints, in real time! This is an outstanding little video:

Next, some animated music video shenanigans in Lost Rhapsody:

This song parody video was created between seasons five and six – and with just one episode left, it’s more pertinent that ever! To the tune of Downtown (aka Juliet’s song), this is the Lost Answers Song:

I’ve featured this next video a couple of times on the Choob but it never gets old. It’s the opening credits to Lost – 1980s-style:

And finally, for now, on a similar theme, here is what the opening credits might have looked like had Lost been made in 1967:

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Filed under Animation, Current and recent TV shows, Music, Stuff, Tuesday Is Theme Tunes Day, TV Themes

Lost Week: Top Of The Pops – Juliet’s Song (Downtown – Petula Clark)

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After six years and 121 episodes full of flashbacks, flashforwards, flashsideways, mysterious energy sources and time-travelling bunny rabbits, Lost is, sadly, almost at an end.

There are just two episodes left and this time next week, it will all be over (in the US at least, where the two-and-a-half-hour episode airs on Sunday – UK viewers will have to wait until the following Friday to see it).

Time will tell whether or not the grand finale can live up to our hopes and expectations after what has been, on the whole, such a brilliant, ground-breaking run – but whatever happens, it’s been one hell of an enjoyable ride. Lost has without a doubt been the first TV phenomenon of the 21st century.

To celebrate the end of the show, this week is Lost Week on The Cathode Ray Choob. I’ll be looking back at some of my favourite moments from the series and spotlighting some of the best fan tributes.

To kick things off, some music and a little tribute to poor Juliet Burke (Elizabeth Mitchell), who has been much missed from this final season.

The character was introduced in the first episode of season 3 in a memorable scene that also finally lifted the veil on The Others and showed us the crash of Flight 815 from a whole new perspective.

The song that Juliet plays in her introductory scene – and which, we were to learn, reflects her desire to escape Ben’s grasp and break free of the island prison she had been manipulated into – was Petula Clark‘s Downtown, a song I’ve always been fond of, ever since I was a nipper.

Here is that scene from Lost season 3 episode 1:

And here is some vintage footage of Petula Clark singing the song:


Filed under Current and recent TV shows, It's Classic Clip Friday!, Music, Top Of The Pops Thursday

Rock Legend Ronnie James Dio Dies Aged 67

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Former Rainbow and Black Sabbath singer Ronnie James Dio died earlier today, aged 67, after a battle with stomach cancer.

The first gig I ever went to was to see his own band, Dio, in 1985 at the legendary Glasgow Apollo.

But even by then, RJD had been making music for more than a quarter of a century.

His first single, with the band Ronnie and the Red Caps, was released in 1958. This one, An Angel Is Missing, is from 1960:

When Former Deep Purple guitarist Ritchie Blackmore formed Rainbow in 1975, he hired Ronnie James Dio as lead singer. Dio’s previous band, Elf, had supported Deep Purple on tour for several years.

Here’s Rainbow performing The Man On The Silver Mountain and Long Live Rock ‘N’ Roll in, I think, Munich in 1977.

Dio left Rainbow due to musical differences in 1978 and took over as singer with Black Sabbath after Ozzy Osbourne was sacked in 1979.

Here are recordings of RJD performing Paranoid and Iron Man with the band in 1980:

Dio and then Sabbath drummer Vinnie Appice quit the band in 1982 to form Dio, along with guitarist Vivian Campbell and bassist Jimmy Bain.

Here’s a few of the band’s early, best-known songs. First up, Holy Diver filmed in Utrecht, Holland in 1983:

Next up, The Last in Line, filmed at The Spectrum (presumably the one in Philadelphia) in 1984:

And finally, the wonderfully cheesy video for their 1985 single Rock ‘n’ Roll Children:

Ronnie James Dio – RIP.

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Filed under Music, Obituary, Top Of The Pops Thursday, Video Killed The Radio Star

Top Of The Pops: KISS – Live In Glasgow, May 9, 2010

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Rock legends KISS played their first Scottish gig in 17 years on Sunday night, at Glasgow’s SECC, as part of their Sonic Boom Over Europe Tour.

The Choob was there and as someone who has been a casual fan of the band, at best, I have to say – those guys know how to put on one hell of a great show.

With the possible exception of Iron Maiden, I’ve never seen a band stage a better, more theatrical concert.

Hydraulic platforms, bursts of flame, mortar explosions, ticker tape, a guitar that fires off rockets, a rope slide that carrried Paul Stanley over the heads of the audience to a revolving platform at the back of the arena and, of course, Gene Simmons‘ fire-breating and blood-spitting… and more besides.

Oh, and the music wasn’t too bad either – especially since the two remaining original founding members, Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley are 60 and 58 respectively (though you’d never guess that from their performances).

Not being a major fan of the band, I was in two minds when I was offered the chance of a ticket – I’m so glad I took it up now. Awesome show and a great night.

And here, hot off the digital, um, video… press, ahem, here we have a selection of videos recorded at the Glasgow gig.

First up, Say Yeah, taken from their latest album, Sonic Boom:

Next, their 1987 hit Crazy Crazy Nights, which, according to Paul Stanley, they hadn’t played live for about 17 years:

The following five songs make up the complete encore. It kicked off with Lick It Up, from the 1983 album of the same name:

Next, Shout It Out Loud, from the 1976 album Destroyer:

From the 1979 album Dynasty, this is I Was Made For Lovin’ You, during which Paul Stanley flew out over the heads of the audience:

Here’s God Gave Rock ‘N’ Roll To You (from the soundtrack of the 1991 movie Bill And Ted’s Bogus Journey):

And finally, the explosive finale to the gig, Rock And Roll  All Nite originally released on their 1975 album Dressed To Kill.


Filed under Music, Top Of The Pops Thursday