Towers of London/Sammy Live @ Tamworth Place, Tamworth (UK) - 21st July 2007

During a recent late night psychic show on ITV2, the host "Sally Morgan" bizarrely chose to interview 4 members of Towers of London". Donny, Tommy, Rev and Snell sat on top of an open top London bus and undertook a reading from the giggling cherub faced host. The main message they as the band happily took away from this was that "they were about to… wait for it…. explode".

How prophetic those words were eh? I guess however not in the sense that "Sally" meant them. As this summer's UK tour now sees the mighty "Towers" setting stages alight minus "The Rev and Snell". Both, if you believe the gossip, having decided to leave for what they appear to think are going to be greener pastures?

It has to be said that during the early part of 2007 "Towers of London" could do no wrong both musically and in popularity terms. They were selling out their UK dates, admittedly helped by Donny Tourette's stint in Celebrity Big Brother. And the buzz they were generating through their burgeoning army of younger fans ready to "drink, fight and fuck" was simply awe inspiring at times. So, here I was some four months on, in a converted Cinema in Tamworth (with shades of The Opera On The Green about it) to watch the next stages of "Towers of London's" career unfold.

But first it was down to Essex girls "Sammy" to warm the crowd up. Playing to a largely drunk and disinterested crowd, this obviously manufactured band of 4 lasses didn't really do anything to offend, or excite me. Their tight set of largely AOR influenced pop/rock was played with a cheeky "Babs Windsor Carry-On" style swagger that set the few listening heads nodding. I'm sure cinemas will pretty soon turn into arenas for this band as "Sammy's" bought success is almost assured. (Just watch out for a spin off TV series near you soon).

The 500 capacity venue was about three quarters full by the time the signature Air Raid Siren marked the arrival of "Towers Of London" Mark 2. And it was immediately obvious that this was a much different band on show. Opening with a fittingly brutal "On a Noose" I was fucking flabbergasted to see that "Dirk Tourette" was wearing his guitar at a height more fitting to a "Jim'll Fix It" badge than a Les Paul, while none of the band were wearing the signature graffiti vests. Christ, "Tommy" was even wearing a hoodie. "OK, now lets not get carried away here" I thought, "Remember you are here for the music".

"I'm A Rat", "How Rude She Was" and "Lose It" were all rolled out and given a sound mauling and the crowd lapped up every minute. But having witnessed the epoch making tour of March 07 this was simply not the same band who had sweated blood for 4 years to create that beautiful disaster of noise and chaos. The newer songs played in the shape of "The Bible" and "Towers Waltz" were also again both dusted off and sounded well…. OK. With only seven days to prepare for this tour, credit must be given to "Kristian Marr" (who was more "Marc Ford" than "Johnny Thunders") and "Aaron Attwood" who on guitar and drums respectively were excellent. Closing with a caustic and almost autobiographical "Fuck It Up" the band bid us "Good Night".

I just hope no one forgets to ask them back as over the last 4 years, they have given this reviewer some huge musical hard-ons.

Now what was it that Psychic said again?

by Johnny H.

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