Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Young Marble Giants on Broadway

According to Mike Appelstein at his excellent Young Marble Giants resource, members of Wales's most cult band ever, used to reside at 48a Broadway, Cardiff. Doesn't look like the place has changed much since the late-Seventies judging by this photograph taken yesterday. I, too, once lived on Broadway, but further down the street above a caravanette shop. Living on Broadway was not as glamorous as it might sound. During my spell there (about 5 years later than the band) it was a cut-price, fairly dingy neighbourhood, with not a lot happening. There was Hank's garage where the bikers hung out; a couple of greasy spoons; a dodgy laundrette where my punk tee-shirts would go missing with monotonous regularity; and a clutch of takeaways. What little pavement action that did occur, was usually sparked by alcoholic residents from the homeless hostel; or by whizzed-up working girls from the massage parlour across the road (euphemistically called the Broadway Health Studio). What Broadway did have, though, was some great pubs: The Clifton, The Locomotive (now boarded up), The Bertram, The New Dock Tavern and the legendary Royal Oak. Solid working-class establishments that sold cheap beer where we punk/goth/weirdo types would occasionally venture, only to be stared at by the locals. But, to be honest, we kind of liked that.

Where this wholly unnecessary preamble is leading to, is the news that Young Marble Giants are to play a gig at the National Museum of Wales, Cardiff, as part of the upcoming Swn festival. Keep an eye on the Swn website for ticketing details.