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So much to catch up on

It's been a long time since my last post, I've been pretty busy and haven't had much free time recently. I'm in a better place mentally at the moment but that can change pretty quickly.

Last month we saw Frank Turner at the Cliffs which was excellent. The support acts were probably the best I've ever seen, normally they are rubbish but this was an exception. I was expecting The Homeless Gospel Choir to be a) a choir made up of more than one person b) singing gospel music and c) homeless, but he turned out to be a single non-homeless non-gospel person. He was excellent though, the sound system wasn't working at first so he came into the crowd with his guitar to do a few songs unplugged. They finally fixed it and he went back on stage to sing a few protest songs!

After that we thought the Arkells were going to struggle but they were also excellent and enjoyable. They pulled someone from the crowd to play a few chords on the guitar, the bloke looked like he enjoyed himself immensely!

The Frank Turner set was probably one of the most enjoyable live shows I've seen in a long time. It was great to be in a crowd that obviously knew the songs and were up for a bit of a dance. The highlight was when Frank motioned for a circle pit to be formed - I don't think I've been in one for a decade but I spent the rest of the night throwing myself around at other happy people!

Frank Turner - Cliffs Pavilion 2018
We saw the Manics a couple of days later at Wembley Arena. I think it was my 21st time seeing them, it's a large number anyway, and I was expecting to be a little disappointed as seeing them in large venues in London is never brilliant. The Coral were OK as a support act, I last saw them at Glastonbury in 2005. We got further forward for the Manics (on Nicky's side, naturally) but unfortunately there weren't many people who wanted to jump about. Musically it was great, the new songs worked well live and Nicky did "No Feelings" to let James' voice recover.

Manic Street Preachers - Wembley 2018
I've started wearing ear plugs to gigs (and nightclubs, not that that happens much!) as I suffer from a ringing in my ears when it's quiet and don't want to make it worse. It's made a big difference - I don't get ringing noises straight away and I can hear much better. It isn't quite as loud but I think the sacrifice is worth it for the sake of my ears!

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