Massive Attack’s Massive Show

Massive Attack by Jackie Roman/ The Hell Gate- image is copyrighted, not for use without permission

Massive Attack will be performing at the Park Avenue Armory over the weekend. They’ve always had a great live show, but this is looking to be, massive, pardon the pun. They’ve been touring with political TV documentarian Adam Curtis. BBC has a really good read of what to expect at the show, sounds intense.

Feature Submission- Treasure Island Festival by Josh Sanseri

Ty Segall by Josh Saneri/ The Hell Gate- image is copyrighted, not for use without permission. To license this image, and other images by Josh Sanseri go here.

Nice work if you can get it- highlights from San Francisco’s Treasure Island festival. Portraits and live coverage from the city by the bay’s Fall music festival. Everyone from Grimes to Chuck D viewable here. 

Feature Submission- Eurosonic Festival by Tom Roelofs

Raketkanon by Tom Roelofs/ The Hell Gate- image is copyrighted, not for use without permission

Music festival season is already upon us. Before we know it SXSW and Coachella will be here, along with several hundred others around the world. To kick things off we are showcasing the amazing live photography of Tom Roelofs from the 2013 Eurosonic Festival in the Netherlands. We are loving all the frenetic energy swirling around in these images, they’re making us check out John Coffey. Enjoy the gallery.

Patti Smith is 65

It’s Patti Smith’s birthday today. At 65 she’s solidified herself as one of the most important counter culture icons and continues to thrive. We could go on ad nauseum about her body of work but what we keep noticing and coming back to is how much the camera absolutely adores Patti.  Few would argue that Horses is one of the greatest album covers of all time- and so much of it has to do with Patti’s relationship with Robert Mapplethrope, but with Patti there is more to it… she’s always been very conscious of her image- everything from her hair to her clothes. More importantly she engages the camera- she has this magnetism that compels you to stare at her. It’s almost impossible to find a bad picture of Patti- like seeing her perform there is something that happens when she interacts- she becomes a vessel, a conduit, for something greater, something otherworldly and powerful.

The first time we saw Patti it was a hot, disgusting August day in New York. She read “Piss Factory” and we were covered in goose bumps. She closed her eyes and covered Prince’s “When Doves Cry” and transformed the song and herself.

At 65 Patti shows no signs of slowing down- she’s set to release a new studio album this year- (her 11th)) and is working with Tom Verlaine of Television, which we are extremely excited about.

If ever you want to spend a good New Year’s Eve in New York City forget Times Square-  get yourselves some tickets to see Patti ring in the New Year/ celebrate her birthday at the Bowery Ballroom.

Happy Birthday Patti- you’ve been one of our heroes since we were kids.

Feature Submission- Norton Records 25th Anniversary by Jackie Roman

Russell Quan of the Phantom Surfers by Jackie Roman/ The Hell Gate- image is copyrighted, not for use without permission

Celebrating 25 years from the label that’s  introduced and/ or reissued seminal records from the Sonics, Question Mark and the Mysterians, the’s   and Hasil Adkins. Jackie Roman was on hand to document 4 nights of music history.

Michael Shamberg Tribute

New Order by Sophie Jarry/ The Hell Gate- image is copyrighted, not for use without permission

For just one night in Paris last week, New Order reformed to raise money for film producer and long time collaborator Michael Shamberg’s medical costs. Minus Peter Hook, but with the addition of Gillian Gilbert, who hasn’t played with New Order since 2001, they played Le Bataclan.

Sophie Jarry was at the gig covering it for Sound of Violence magazine and Shamberg himself posted the following on the magazine’s page- “Love your work and the CU of old turntable from my film with Morris’s drum kit”. And all of your photos, congrats on your work.”

To find out more about Michael Shamberg and what you can do to help go here (you can get a limited edition gig poster by Peter Savillle & Paul Barnes) go here.

The Resurrection

The Stone Roses by Peter Anderson/ The Hell Gate- image is copyrighted not for use without permission

Despite the persistent rumors this still seems too good to be true & knowing the personalities involved, might well yet be. Hate the word “seminal” but for a generation of people this band was seminal. Say the words “Spike Island” to these people and they will smile – because this band actually means something.

There is a beautiful Peter Anderson photograph represented by The Hell Gate of Morrissey lying in front of the 80’s version of the Manchester United football ground – an 80’s stadium, under-developed and not the commercial edifice it is today. All very raw, very English working class, very cold Saturday afternoon standing amongst a bunch of youthful runts. I guess that is that Stone Roses generation and feeling and maybe something you’d hope would be left right there. It doesn’t really exist anymore.

That said, there is something beautifully Mancunian and contrarian about these guys going against everything they have ever said and doing this. Who knows, they might take the world in a way they should have done the first time. Heaton Park. Home turf. Fingers Crossed.

The Hell Gate has some beautiful Roses material from Peter Anderson & Michael Spencer Jones, along with solo images of Ian Brown by Jamie Beeden. Including from that very important Spike Island concert.


Walk The Plank

Jared of The Black Lips- Jackie Roman/Hell Gate Exclusive- image is copyrighted, not for use without permission

Well I guess these things are cyclical… Doesn’t seem so long ago that the live experience was being held up as the savior of the music bottom line. Now we hear more about the explosion in platforms, great performance figures for internet radio despite Pandora & Rhapsody & artists placing their work in all kinds of original & relentlessly commercial ways… Maybe there is a buck or two in digital….

This article in The Independent yesterday points to some uncomfortable numbers & a few things that have become obvious to the regular gig enthusiast. As the Summer Festival season winds down(don’t forget that Lollapalooza is tomorrow kids and steaming live on Youtube)  thoughts are scattered about like the field on the last night Glastonbury.

I don’t like the idea of super groups touring the world for a year earning money the size of a small nation’s GDP. As a music lover I also don’t like the financial commitment involved in sharing a field with a bunch of pasty hipsters for 2 days constantly worrying about going to the bathroom. These sums can start businesses or get your ass to a Mediterranean beach. The cost of regular gig tickets on any night of the week are also way too prohibitive for these shows not to be events. Events are tied more to the hospitality industry, they don’t intertwine with your life in the way a gig used to.

The Chalet/No to VIP area mentality of the likes of ATP are a breath of fresh air & you just hope the glut of small independent festivals can buck the trend of this article.

I’d say the innovation of the likes of Sixth Man is great as long as some principals hold up – getting fans closer to the point of creativity & closer to the artist. Boats & trips abroad are a few upgrades (so hospitality would say) away from straight up elitist BS at ridiculous prices– a bad marketer/Premier Package nightmare.

Great music should come out of the small venues & the clubs & I’d love to see innovation happening there. Day in day out. Now that’s aspiration I don’t need a brochure for.

To revisit tom foolery on the high seas go to Jackie Roman’s photos of The Bruise Cruise

Jackie Roman’s Coverage of Atlanta Mess Around 2011

Paul Artiques & Guitar Lightnin’ Lee. photo by Jackie Roman/ The Hell Gate- image is copyrighted, not for use without permission.

New photos up on The Hell Gate site from April 19th’s Atlanta Mess Around. This is a must for garage rock aficionados… In- your-face live shots, some southern BBQ action and local heroes. Images are available for licensing. For Jackie’s most excellent blog post about her weekend go here.

Pearl Jam Celebrates 20 yrs. With Labor Day Weekend Festival And New Documentary

Pearl Jame by Steve Gullick/ The Hell Gate- image is copyrighted, not for use without permission

To celebrate its 20 year anniversary this September, Pearl Jam is planning a Labor Day weekend festival at the Alpine Valley Music Theater in East Troy, WI. Pearl Jam will headline every night, along with a hand-picked line up that includes some of its favorite acts and friends such as The Strokes, Mudhoney, Queens Of The Stone Age and John Doe. For more information on the event, including a complete line up and pre-sale information, go here.

Along with the Labor Day festivities, deluxe re-releases of Vitalogy, VS., and  of course Ten, will be available in September.  The Cameron Crowe documentary, which is Crowe’s “love letter” to the band, will also be available and airing on PBS October 21st.

It’s a career worth celebrating, and Pearl Jam are doing it in an interesting, intimate way, something their devoted fans will surely appreciate.