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The Middle Ones

Posted: Fri May 01, 2009 11:32
by Colin
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Clearly this band is overdue a thread of its own. I absolutely love The Middle Ones. I first heard a few of their songs on Myspace in late 2007, liked them, but didn’t think a lot more of it until I saw them play at last year’s Indietracks. They were the first band on in the church on Sunday afternoon, and it was one of my top five sets of any band ever, I reckon. If it wasn’t so bastard hot, the hairs on the back of my neck would’ve been standing up.

In a technical sense it wasn’t the best of performances – they would stop and start or burst into giggles halfway through a song - but it was charm personified. The harmonies, the instrumentation, the lyrics, all combine to make an irresistible whole that really only works live. As much as I love their recordings, they’re just one of those bands that only properly make sense when they’re there in front of you.

Anyway. Fast forward a bit and I get a message from Anna asking if they could come and play in Glasgow with their friends The Mountain Parade a week before Christmas. Lynsosaurus and I hadn’t really intended to put on gigs until that point, but it was an offer I really didn’t want to pass on. We managed to get The Just Joans to play too, booked a venue and promoted it like crazy. In the end it was a bit of a disaster turnout-wise, but once again The Middle Ones were a revelation. Every time I see them play I feel like they come away with a room full of new fans, because they just have that kind of effect on you. It was the same at London Popfest, probably moreso. They played completely unamplified in the small upstairs room at the Salmon and Compass, and the room was packed. If anything it was even better than their Indietracks set. Every so often I’d glance across the room, and the grin on Marianthi’s face said it all. They were fucking brilliant that day.

Sorry for going on a bit. They’ve only really released one four-track CD-R so far, but I’ve managed to cull quite a few of their songs from Myspace and so on. I’ve got about 16 I think – it might be an idea for me to upload them somewhere if people have missed out and would be interested in hearing them.

PS. Are they indiepop? Probably not, but it seems to fit here so I’m sticking with it. If Camera Obscura aren’t indiepop, I don’t know what is anymore…

Re: The Middle Ones

Posted: Fri May 01, 2009 12:12
by timahall
Colin wrote:It was the same at London Popfest, probably moreso. They played completely unamplified in the small upstairs room at the Salmon and Compass, and the room was packed. If anything it was even better than their Indietracks set. Every so often I’d glance across the room, and the grin on Marianthi’s face said it all. They were fucking brilliant that day.
Yeah! I absolutely loved them at the Popfest. I knew nothing about them at all so it was probably my favourite surprise of the weekend. The look on Colin Clary's face said it all too!
Colin wrote:PS. Are they indiepop? Probably not, but it seems to fit here so I’m sticking with it. If Camera Obscura aren’t indiepop, I don’t know what is anymore…
Of course they are, but then again I consider Camera Obscura, The Pastels, The Smiths etc. indiepop too. It's independent pop music innit.

Re: The Middle Ones

Posted: Fri May 01, 2009 12:17
by roundbitsofplastic
yass!

they were probably the biggest surprise of POPFEST for me. there were other bands i hadn;t heard before that i really really like but the middle ones killed me a bit.

i haven't bought their cd cos the myspacey stuff is not quite on for me, but i'd love to see them live lots more.

Re: The Middle Ones

Posted: Fri May 01, 2009 12:22
by darvé
Great post Colin.

They're just wonderful aren't they, i totally agree that you need to see them live to really get them, i wouldn't say i'm disappointed with the songs i've picked up, but live they just come into their own. The first time i saw them was Indietracks, and i can't really remember why, i don't think i planned to, i just happened to think that the church would be a good place to go to get out of the morning sun that was playing havoc with my hangover, but i remember watching the whole set stood at the back by the door, with Marianthi drifting in and out and both us just saying how utterly fantastic it was, i bought the CD, listened to it once when i get in then really forgot about it until they were announced for Popfest.

They really benefitted from playing the sunday at Popfest (as opposed to any of the other days) as they just fit the feel of the afternoon perfectly, it just had the slightly frazzled and confused feel of being out since thursday night and doing pop quizs and dancing and drinking, and then they were just there playing these songs that just felt so right.

I don't think i have any of the songs apart from those on the demo CD, i'd be interested to hear whatever else you have Colin definitely.

Re: The Middle Ones

Posted: Fri May 01, 2009 12:27
by Colin
I'll have a go at uploading them somewhere this weekend then. I won't upload the songs from the CD-R of course, because that's still available to buy. None of the other stuff has ever been commercially available though, so it should be okay.

Re: The Middle Ones

Posted: Fri May 01, 2009 12:37
by everard
i missed them at indietracks & the popfest, but was pretty much blown away by them when they played with the motifs the other day. their cd-r looked so ugly/ twee that i went to eat before their set. big mistake. got back about halfway through. so good! fortunately they still had cd-rs left afterwards.

clearly dismissing a band based on their artwork is pretty stupid, 'don't judge a book by its cover' & all that. but i don't think it fits the music. the image on the flyer for the wiaiwya 7" looks much nicer, though.

they kind of remind me of the dublin band heathers & also the late, great receptionists.

people who want songs from myspace: use file2hd

Re: The Middle Ones

Posted: Fri May 01, 2009 12:39
by wiaiwya
tsk tsk daniel...

pop before food any day...

Re: The Middle Ones

Posted: Fri May 01, 2009 12:53
by everard
well, i'd heard that the place down the road was doing limited edition felafels in a silkscreened, hand-numbered box, so, y'know, i had to check it out.

Re: The Middle Ones

Posted: Fri May 01, 2009 13:00
by richpassivity
everard wrote:well, i'd heard that the place down the road was doing limited edition felafels in a silkscreened, hand-numbered box, so, y'know, i had to check it out.
haha!

Re: The Middle Ones

Posted: Fri May 01, 2009 13:16
by tonieee
davo wrote:The first time i saw them was Indietracks, and i can't really remember why, i don't think i planned to, i just happened to think that the church would be a good place to go to get out of the morning sun that was playing havoc with my hangover, but i remember watching the whole set stood at the back by the door, with Marianthi drifting in and out and both us just saying how utterly fantastic it was
That was pretty much exactly my first experience of The Middle Ones except I was sat down near the front with Markie and absolutely captivated by the whole thing.

I bought the cd and I've not stopped listening to it since.

Re: The Middle Ones

Posted: Fri May 01, 2009 13:21
by colinsmitten
I only saw them that once - at london popfest - but their album is the album I'm most looking forward to this whole year! yow! I think if I could see them play once a day for a year, I would!

Not sure if it'll match how amazingly wonderful their live show is, but I'm not worried about it - I would love to see them play again! So magical and unselfconscioulsy lovely!

Re: The Middle Ones

Posted: Fri May 01, 2009 18:16
by roundbitsofplastic
I keep getting flashbacks of bumping into them just after their popfest set and just standing in their way going "mega! ace!... MEGA!" before realising i couldn't come up with a sentance at all that could do justice to what I thought about their set.

Re: The Middle Ones

Posted: Fri May 01, 2009 21:39
by crystalball
They're lovely. Their fragility just floors me when I see them play live but it's not a precious, self-conscious fragility at all and so I love them even more for that reason. They have such pretty songs and, when Grace and Anna sing together, the world is a completely brilliant place. I love watching people's faces when they see the Middle Ones play - surprise turns to smiles turns to adoration. It's ace.

Re: The Middle Ones

Posted: Sat May 02, 2009 09:25
by roundbitsofplastic
thassit!

at popfest, it was like everyone in the room was as astonished as i was! and though i'm sure a lot of the poeple there had seen them before.. well, they're captivating aren't they!
crystalball wrote:They're lovely. Their fragility just floors me when I see them play live but it's not a precious, self-conscious fragility at all and so I love them even more for that reason. They have such pretty songs and, when Grace and Anna sing together, the world is a completely brilliant place. I love watching people's faces when they see the Middle Ones play - surprise turns to smiles turns to adoration. It's ace.

Re: The Middle Ones

Posted: Sun May 03, 2009 04:00
by colinsmitten
I just got one of their songs today when I downloaded the 2nd 2 volumes of the new eardrums comp! the song about loving someone but not always liking them! yow!

Re: The Middle Ones

Posted: Sun May 03, 2009 09:30
by wiaiwya
yup... good as new is available to download for free from

http://www.eardrumspop.com/2009/04/29/b ... -volume-d/

hope you like it

Re: The Middle Ones

Posted: Sun May 17, 2009 10:50
by stitch-stitch
here are some excellent pictures from when we went on tour before christmas

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there are more, but i'll spare you the image heavy thread.

Re: The Middle Ones

Posted: Sun May 17, 2009 11:11
by Colin
stitch-stitch wrote:here are some excellent pictures from when we went on tour before christmas

Image

there are more, but i'll spare you the image heavy thread.
Bless. That's in the street outside my flat. We need to get The Middle Ones back up here sometime soon.

Re: The Middle Ones

Posted: Mon May 18, 2009 23:23
by wyvern
I thought thy were brilliant last year...

Re: The Middle Ones

Posted: Thu Jun 18, 2009 08:48
by tonieee
I realised last night the Goodnight is the best song recorded ever! Countdown used to be my favourite Middle Ones song but that was because I didn't understand how brilliant Goodnight was.