Archive for the ‘Blue Oyster Cult’ Category

Blue Oyster Cult Newcastle Tyne Theatre 2002

Blue Oyster Cult Newcastle Tyne Theatre 2002
I lost touch with Blue Oyster Cult for some time, after seeing them several times in the 70s and 80s. There was a 17 year period between my BOC experiences, between seeing them in 1985 at Newcastle City Hall and a gig at Newcastle Tyne Theatre in 2002. I went along with my mate Norm who is a big Blue Oyster Cult fan. The Tyne Theatre is a Grade 1 listed building, which opened in 1867 as the Tyne Theatre and Opera House. Its a lovely venue, and I have fond memories of going there in the 60s with my dad to see King Kong, which seemed a marvel to me at the time. The Tyne Theatre wasn’t full that night, but a respectable crowd had gathered to see BOC. The line up at that time featured old timers Eric Bloom, Buck Dharma, and Allen Lanier and the set contained a healthy mix of old favourites. It was great to see the band again, and the performance was as good as the old days, bringing back memories of those nights in the City Hall. BOC have been back once or twice since then, although I missed those gigs. Its about time I caught up with them again. Setlist: Burnin’ For You; OD’d On Life Itself; ETI; Pocket; Harvester Of Eyes; Teen Archer; Quicklime Girl; Perfect Water; Cities On Flame; Golden Age of Leather; See You in Black; Last Days Of May; Godzilla; (Don’t Fear) The Reaper; Dominance & Submission. It was great to hear Last Days of May again; it remains one of my favourites songs.

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Blue Oyster Cult Newcastle City Hall 1984 and 1985

Blue Oyster Cult Newcastle City Hall 1984 and 1985
Blue Oyster Cult underwent a series of line-up changes during the 1980s, and by the late 80s only Eric Bloom and Buck Dharma remained from the early days. I saw the band twice in the mid 80s, in 1984 and again in 1985. The 1984 show was BOC at their best. The City Hall was packed and the band delivered a great show, much better than the very poor performance my mates and I had seen at Donington a few years earlier. Support came from Aldo Nova. Setlist for 1984 gig: Me262; ETI; Hot Rails To Hell; Born 2 Rock; Cities On Flame; Burnin’ For You; Take Me Away; Joan Crawford; Shooting Shark; (Don’t Fear) The Reaper; Godzilla; Born to be Wild; Let Go; Gotta get outta this Place; Roadhouse Blues. Blue Oyster Cult were back in Newcastle the following year, and this time the place was only about half full. At this point the line-up featured three long time members: Eric Bloom, Buck Dharma, and Joe Bouchard. Support came from Girlshool. My memories of the evening are of a half-hearted performance, and little crowd reaction. Setlist: Dominance & Submission; ETI; Buck’s Boogie; White Flags; Take Me Away; Last Days Of May; Dancin’ in the Ruins; Joan Crawford; Shadow Warrior; Burnin’ For You; Godzilla; (Don’t Fear) The Reaper; Cities On Flame; Hot Rails To Hell. I lost touch with Blue Oyster Cult after the 1985 show, and didn’t get to see them for some 17 years. I’ll blog on that gig tomorrow. Looking back and reflecting on these gigs makes me realise just how good BOC were. There legacy is pretty impressive. They are still performing to this day and have released 20 albums; not bad going!

Blue Oyster Cult Newcastle City Hall 1975 and 1978

Blue Oyster Cult Newcastle City Hall 1975 and 1978
I first went to see Blue Oyster Cult at Newcastle in 1975. This was their first UK tour and at the time, they were not very well known at all in this country. I went along, with my friend John, largely out of curiosity. I’d read a little about them in NME or Sounds, and had heard a few tracks somewhere. By 1975, BOC had released three albums, and their live set featured such classics as Harvester of Eyes and my all time favourite Last Days of May, which I still love and play to this day. Set list: Stairway to the Stars; OD’d On Life Itself; Harvester Of Eyes; Flaming Telepaths; Last Days Of May; Before The Kiss; Candy Store (Fill-in Jam); Cities On Flame; Maserati GT; Buck’s Boogie; Me262 (5 guitars); Hot Rails To Hell; Dominance & Submission. I remember much being made of a five guitar line up, and the show as being pretty good, with a half full hall being seriously impressed by this new band. Note the miss-spelling on the ticket! By 1978, when The Cult returned to the City Hall, they were much bigger news. They had released Agents of Fortune, and Spectres both of which were massive lp successes here in the UK. The single Don’t Fear the Reaper was played everywhere, and has since become their trademark. So this time the City Hall was sold out, and the concert was much anticipated. Nick Kent wrote in the NME: “See, the facts as I recognize ’em are clean-cut to a fine-boned T – the two kings of heavy metal rock in the world right now are Britain’s own Thin Lizzy and the U.S. Blue Öyster Cult.” I went along with a group of mates, all of us now being big BOC fans and they were just amazing. BOC were at the top of their game at this time, and the Newcastle crowd witnessed a great gig, and gave them a great reception. The show was much bigger than in 1975, with lazers, smoke and other pyrotechnics. In fact BOC were one of the first rock bands to make use of lazers, which seemed pretty exciting and dangerous for the times. Support came from Japan, in their pre-Ghost arty-rock era. They were hyped up quite a lot at the time, but were pretty disappointing on the night. The set list will have been something like: R.U. Ready 2 Rock; ETI; Harvester Of Eyes; We Gotta Get Out of This Place; Cities on Flame With Rock and Roll; Then Came The Last Days Of May; ME 262; Kick Out the Jams; Godzilla; This Ain’t the Summer of Love; 5 Guitars; Born To Be Wild. Encore: Hot Rails To Hell; (Don’t Fear) The Reaper. I’ve just found a flyer for the 1975 gig, with support act Birth Control. The flyer entitles me to 70p off On Your Feet or on Your Knees! from Virgin records. I wonder if its too late to cash it in? (Actually it is, the flyer says “offer closes 30 Nov 1975”. Shame).

AC/DC: Monsters of Rock Donington Park 1981

Monsters of Rock festival August 22, 1981
I’m continuing my AC/DC memories with thoughts on the 1981 Monsters of Rock Festival. The line up for this, which was the second Monsters of Rock event was AC/DC; Whitesnake; Blue Öyster Cult; Slade; Blackfoot; More.
I went along to this gig with a group of mates in the back of a Transit van with one of my friends driving us. We went primarily to see AC/DC, who were a favourite band of all of us, although many of us were also fans of Blue Oyster Cult. This was our first visit to Donington, and for me is for the first of several visits to the Monsters of Rock festival over the next 10 years. My recollection of the day is a very cold and wet one, with, as often the case for festivals in the UK, quite a bit of rain. The first couple of bands: More and Blackfoot weren’t anything special as I recall, but Slade went down well as they always did at a festival.  
I’d seen Slade tear the place apart at the Reading Festival the year before, in common with many others in the Donington crowd, and that Reading comeback meant that they were now well accepted by the heavy rock fraternity. I also remember lots of cans etc being thrown across the crowd that day. The sound mix for Blue Oyster Cult was awful and they were a big disappointment for all of us; it didn’t go well for them at all that day. Whitesnake were on top form around this time with Coverdale in great voice, delivering classics like Mistreated and Ain’t no love in the heart of the city. AC/DC closed the day and were great, their show translating well to a massive open air setting. The AC/DC setlist at Donington was: Hells Bells; Shot Down in Flames; Sin City; Back in Black; Bad Boy Boogie; The Jack; What Do You Do For Money Honey; Highway to Hell; High Voltage; Whole Lotta Rosie; Rocker; T.N.T.; Rock and Roll Ain’t Noise Pollution; You Shook Me All Night Long; Let There Be Rock. Over the next couple of days I’ll do a write up on the 1984 and 1991 Monsters of Rock festivals, which will bring my AC/DC memories up to date. I’ll then move on to another band. I haven’t been there since 1991, but am planning to go to Download at Donington in June this year to see the reformed original Black Sabbath, unless they add any indoor shows before then.