Glasgow: Royal Concert Hall, Sat 9 Sep.
It really is rubbish being a Spice Girl. No it is, honest. There’s the millions of quid, the adoration of your faithful fans, the celebrity romances and the sparkling solo career. Just ask Sporty Spi . . . oh, ah, I mean Melanie C. 'I love my job so much,’ gushes our Mel in amicable style. ‘Realistically, there's nothing else I’d want to do, there are so many more pros than cons.’
Actually, she's right isn't she? It must be bloody brilliant to be a Spice Girl. Especially to be the only one that's not only got the millions, the fans, the solo career, but also the one that's got a modicum of respect and that actually seems to be a bit of a laugh. So Melanie C has made the most of the current hiatus of activity on Spiceworld and conquered the known pop universe all over again.
’When the Spice Girls came off tour, Melanie and Victoria were preggers so obviously they needed a bit of time off and I just wasn't ready to take time off,‘ she says. ‘It was the perfect time to run away to LA and try to fulfil all my little musical ambitions.’
And fulfil them she has. By any
mortal’s standards, Mel has done pretty well, dominating the charts with four Top Five singles and a million-seller album. By Spice standards, though, she reckons her solo career is a slow burner. 'l'm glad it took a little time to take off,’ she says, somewhat modestly. ’It was great that my first two singles went to number four because if it had been number one single and number one album straight away it would have felt a little bit like I was still in the Spice Girls, and that’s not
the real world for most musicians.’
Erm, no Mel, it’s not. Not content to sticking to one musical genre, Mel has so far produced a rock song, ballad, R&B tune and dance anthem as her first four
Do you want moody self-indulgence or rock and fucking roll?
ROCK ’N’ ROLL Supersuckers Glasgow: King Tut’s, Fri 15 Sep.
Look, what the fuck do yOu want from yOur rock bands? Do you want complex, fragile introspection and dishwater-dull intelligent ponderings7 Do you want pasty-faced twats staring at the floor, eking out tedious soundscapes and moody self- indulgence? Or do yOu want rock and fucking roll? If it’s the latter, and rt should be ferc:hrissakes if you've got a pulse, get your stoopid, sorry, bony ass down to King Tut's on Wednesday the
38 THE lIST 7 21 Sep 2300
It is rubbish being a Spice Girl, isn't it?
singles. Will the real Mel C please stand up? 'I think it’s silly that people say you should stick to one style, pop is so huge now and so widely influenced. This is the only album I was ever going to make - I love my rock and I love my dance and my soul.’
Having played enormodomes with the Spice Girls, Mel is keen to play smaller venues for her solo shows. ’In some respects I prefer to play theatres,’ she says. ’You're closer to the audience and you can really get a vibe
going.’ And you can check out her ’vibe' when she plays
15th of September and tzitness the righteoust kick-ass muddafukkrn mayhem of Super'suc ker‘s live
Don't believe me'? Need coiii.'iriciiig7 Right Here's ten 'fac :s' about Supersuc ker's
1i Their lead singer is called Eddie Spaghetti
Zr lheir latest album is called We [ix/l Power‘s Of Rock ’n’ Roll and contains songs called things like ‘I Want lhe [)rugs', ‘Ersticuffs' and 'lvly Kickass ere'
3) lllt’ List" arranged rnter'vrev.’ ‘.‘.’|'.l1 Eddie Spaghetti fell through becatrse the whole band and their management
at Glasgow's Royal Concert Hall this month. And just keep reminding yourself, it is rubbish being a Spice Girl, isn't it? (Doug Johnstone)
went AWOL for several days while on tour in Germany
4: They once released an EP called Like A Big Fc/clcin’ Train whic h contained the song 'I Say Euck' on rt No doubt a classic
Si They wear stetsons
6i Eddie ‘We're about putting the fun back into rock 'n’ roll And to me fun is rec reatronal drug use, drinking and sex '
7i The band biography claims they were an eleven-piece ska band in 1979, they were all shot dead 'nhrle clowning on the BBC, four bullets in each face, seven for the horn players in 1982 and that they spent 1986 ’strll in hell, but making influential fr'iends' Despite the fact they didn't actually form until 1989
8* “1(‘11‘ drummer is called Dancing Eagle
91 Eddie again ‘We're out here to take the training wheels off indie rock None of this shoe-ga/ing, sensitive, teddy bear crap Let's hear some shit- ass rock 'n' roll '
101 On their website you can buy Supersuc ker's oversi/ed red foam hands in the 'devil's hor‘ns' hand shape Only $15
Null sarcl lDoug Johnstonei
Chisinau National Opera - Arda
Edinburgh: Playhouse, Fri 15—Sat 16 Sep.
For such a small country, Moldova poses some huge logistical problems. Namely how to take the capital’s 200- strong opera company on an extenswe tour of the UK But for Opera 8c Ballet International, it’s a walk in the park Producer Ellen Kent has been staging large scale shows for the past t\.'.'elve years, introducing a wrde range of European talent to British audiences ’I think we've done these huge things for so long, that we don't feel clauntecl anymore,’ says Kent ‘lt's only when we get to this stage, Just before we open, that we think “oh God because everything comes together so guic'kly, it's very hectic and 200 people take a bit of shifting around the country’
Formed in the mid-40s, the Chisinau National Opera first struck tip a relationship with Kent in 1996 when they toured the UK with Caval/er/a rust/(aria With their reputation suitably buoyed, the company are now regular visitors to these shores, selling out the Playhouse earlier this year with their grandiose production of Madama Butterfly But despite havrng won a legion of fans across Europe, the Moldova’s have been less well rec eived by what Kent calls 'the opposition'
'lhere's a mentality that says "oh they're Eastern European, they must be rubbish",' says Kent of the fellow opera companies who shall remain nameless 'And it's ridiculous when you thrnk about the strict disCiplinary schools out there, both vocal and ballet, and it shows in their performance But no matter how good we make our product and how much the public like it, we will be criticised by the opposition '
Audiences will have another chance to Judge for themselves, when the Edinburgh Playhouse is transformed into ancient Egypt for Verdi’s monumental opera, Arda A Last Sphinx dominates the stage and an art deco set gives this very traditional production an unusual edge 'All our shows have a little je ne sars cit/or,’ says Kent ‘We offer something very (‘XOUC very Cecil B De l\1i|le, very Ben-Hur' (Kelly Apter‘i
Verdi gets epic with Chisinau National Opera