Can't beat a bit of Metallica!!! As the name of the tour suggests, they played a lot of material from the newest album 'Hardwired' and of course to keep the fans happy played some of the classics like Seek and Destroy, Nothing Else Matters and Enter Sandman etc.
Here's some pic's from the night, I thought the central stage was great and the light show was entertaining. Amazingly enough, we were seated very high, however there was simply no sound delay which was remarkable considering the distance!
ENGINE - my new covers band
We, the remaining members of Circa Fall continue to establish ourselves as one of the best bands on the Essex/London/Suffolk circuits!
'It's not work for us, we just love playing and seeing people have a great time when we do'.
New website here www.engineband.co.uk/
Check the Facebook page here - https://www.facebook.com/engineband/
It's a shame but inevitable and I guess you'd call it ending on a high note! But is it time to hang up the guitar? Certainly not! From the ashes of Circa Fall arise a new band, new members, new sound and a new path., we'll have a name change and introduce new material to the set list.
The name ‘Engine’ for us means the many components which must work together with precision and perfect timing, complementing one another to produce power and sound. Add a spark and you hear the roar of a well-tuned V8, which sums up our sound completely. Tight, dynamic drums, thundering bass, guitars dripping in tone and a new talented vocal presence that’s fresh, edgy and adaptable.
You can expect more high energy, sweat soaked, fist pumping covers we’re renowned for. We’ll keep playing songs that others don’t but you’ll still know, keeping it new. However, now you can also expect some of the classics for you old skoolers!
So come on, grab a beer, get down to see us, you know you wannit!
Then new incarnation is named Engine- click to see the new site.
Our Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/engineband/
Yeah... So I opened up the 30th, took one look and bailed out pretty quickly. No way was I going to get too involved inside this amplifier. I've serviced it before but not changed valves and as I've said before get a pro to do it if you're unsure!!! So I did...
So, I'm fitting out with original Svetlana Winged 'C' 6L6's for the power stage and JJ-Tesla ECC83S for the pre-amp. The 30th takes 11 valves so it's never going to be a cheap or easy exercise. In the research I've read over at Watford Valves both these choices are top of the pile. The JJ's appear to be the best of the current production valves available today. The only other way you might be able to top these are to source some New Old Stock or original Mullard's, if you do find some expect to pay top money! I've seen some part used singles going toward the £80 area!! However back to the real world, it's said JJ's will tame the treble in Marshall and Fender amps, they are very warm and rich, I was impressed with them when I installed them into my Blackstar and an added bonus is the construction is rugged, just what's required for life on the road.
My Marshall 30th Anniversary finally needs to be re-valved after a good four years of use... Not bad huh!? After replacing the stock valves in my Blackstar with some original SED Svetlana Winged C's I'm gonna do the same again with the Marshall, these are fantastic sounding valves!!! Now my 30th was fitted with 6L6's from the factory, Marshall did this in the 1990's when decent EL34's were in scant supply. Many users decided to modify their amps to EL34's later after production became more reliable and widely available, however I like the sound the 6L6's give so I'm sticking with them for this replacement.
I've ordered the Winged C's from Watford Valves who guarantee they are original Svets which pre-date the New Sensor take over, you can see them here. Many valve aficionados say that the current production valves are no where near as good as the originals in both quality and sound. I'll post up another project report once they arrive, however and this is a big however, upon reading up how to bias a 30th anniversary I'm seriously thinking about taking it to Essex Amp Repairs. General consensus around the internet is that biasing is no easy task when dealing with a 30th! As I said in my Blackstar report basically if you don't know what your doing take your amp to someone qualified. Once I open her up and take a look inside I shall decide whether to stick with my own advice!
Well it happened, Dan had to eventually leave us in case his modern interpretation of the 'Windy Miller' job comes along. As we already knew Dan going will leave a big whole in the band, not only on a musical level but also we're all good friends so it was kinda like a family member going. His last gig with us was at the Trimley Beer Fest which was an outdoor performance through a powerful PA system. He got a good send off!
Anyway, we can't dwell on the past and moving forward we found ourselves a great replacement in the form of Mikey. He brings a different style, much heavier and by god he's loud! He's a great character and immediately fit in with us which I always think is half the battle, if you all get on, the rest will come.
Circa Fall have played a couple of gigs with Mike now which have gone very well, we still need more time to gel and get used to one another but with the limited time Mike's had to learn the stuff and rehearse, we all admit he's done well... The proof is evident in the form of all the overwhelming responses we get after gigs, very humbling, very positive and bookings are coming in for next year already.
Onwards and upwards!!
This Saturday I started the upgrade by building the function generator kit shown in the picture here. It was very straight forward to assemble and only took around an hour, the kit doesn't come with instructions as such so you'll need a basic understanding of electronics or an understanding of what each component is and know how polarity works. Once constructed, a quick test then I moved on to the amp itself... You can grab this DIY kit from Maplin here...
Thought I'd get something down about this new addition to my amplification arsenal, having been an avid Marshall user for many years the lure of the Blackstar sound is just something you cannot ignore.
I found this little beauty on eBay going cheap, it had an intermittent fault which the previous owner didn't know how to resolve so he bought himself a Fender as a replacement. After a few emails with the seller, I soon had a good idea what the problem might be so purchased it as a fixer-upper...
There's a sure sign that things aren't improving economically this year especially for pubs and clubs and we're definitely feeling the knock on effect. Gigs are certainly a bit thinner this year. After talking with some other guy's from popular covers bands, they're being hit as well, so it's not just individual bands being knocked back. I'm hopeful most venues are seeing this as a time to clear out some of the crap that's managed to leak out onto the circuit.
I read a post on Ross' Blog where he has said the same things, as we have less gigs this year, I think it has an effect on us as a band. We seem to have got into a rut musically and the drive to be the best has undoubtedly slipped, what hasn't helped but is totally understandable is that Dan our drummer is looking for a job on the wind farms which could take him away at short notice for a few weeks at a time. The concern is he might not be available for gigs already booked and we could end up cancelling with very little notice to the venue. Again this whole situation could in a roundabout way be attributed to the current economic downturn, however I won't go in to that bit... Dan must do what he needs to do to pay the bills, we all know that and support him.
ALTER BRIDGE 29/11/11...
I'll report once I get back and sobered up...! www.alterbridge.com