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Broken Biscuits: #nowplaying Hull

With Plymouth still tapping its feet, we’re brushing off the sand and getting back on the road. This evening BROKEN BISCUITS lands in Kingston upon Hull at Hull Truck Theatre, ready to shred those skins.


The Housemartins

An unlikely collision of Marxist politics and Christianity, The Housemartins are an alternative backing track to the 80s. Originally buskers on the streets of Hull, their single ‘Happy Hour’ landed them at the top of the UKs music scene. Whilst members Paul Heaton and Dave Hemingway went on to form The Beautiful South, did you know that Fat Boy Slim and Beats International’s Norman Cook used to be their bass player?


The Beautiful South

Former members of the Housemartins, Paul and Dave formed The Beautiful South in 1988, joined by former roadies and guest vocalists Briana Corrigan and Jaqui Abbott. Their hilariously frank lyrics and soft melodies, mean there’s always one line of ‘Don’t Marry Her’ that always has to be yelled at the top of your lungs.


Fatboy Slim

After he moved to Hull to join The Housemartins, the group split in 1988 and Norman Cook created the musical sensation that is Fatboy Slim. Technically a DJ and not a band, we’re going to give this one to Norman because Christopher Walken moves are truly something else.


The Paddingtons

With a similar sound to bands like The Cribs, The Libertines and Alex Turner’s The Last Shadow Puppets, indie rock band The Paddingtons are one of the 00’s grungers out there. Messy hair, eye liner, ‘cool’ hats and tattered jeans… some of us have all been there.

DID YOU KNOW… back in 2012 Paines Plough presented Paul Heaton’s soul opera THE 8TH in a co-production with Manchester International Festival and on tour across the UK.


THE 8TH opens and hits the charts

As regular readers of this blog will know, we don’t like an easy life here at PPHQ.

Earlier in the year, joint-AD James rehearsed Mike Bartlett’s LOVE, LOVE, LOVE and Kate Tempest’s WASTED back-to-back. This summer it’s George‘s turn.

So whilst he and Trainee Director Mark Maughan began rehearsing David Harrower’s GOOD WITH PEOPLE last week in Glasgow – leaving Tara, Claire, Hanna and the rest of team PP overseeing SMITHEREENS‘ transfer to London’s Soho Theatre – he has pretty much simultaneously started rehearsals of Paul Heaton and Che Walker’s THE 8TH.

We premiered the show last year with the Manchester International Festival. Thanks to some fantastic audience feedback, SJM Concerts are remounting the show on a much bigger scale this summer. We’re transferring from a 350-seat tent outside Manchester Town Hall to the 1160-capacity Barbican, as well as touring to Manchester, Sheffield, Birmingham, Leeds, Sheffield and Southwold.

If you missed the show last time you can get the gist of it from The 8th Blog, here.

And you can find out how to book tickets, here.

The show features a five-piece band, a string quartet, 8 singers, 1 actor and tackles a mysterious eighth deadly sin. It’s part staged concert, part soul opera, part gig, part one-man-show.

The brainchild of former Housemartins and Beautiful South lead-man Paul Heaton, it’s brought to vibrant life by an A-list, heavyweight crew of artists. ‘The Wire’ Seasons 4 & 5 star Reg E Cathy is a tour-de-force as the ‘underground railroad reverend’ of celebrated, Award-Winning British playwright Che Walker’s redemptive sermon. The soaring soul of Wayne Giddens, Yvonne Shelton and Steve Menzies pitch up against the song-bird beauty of Jacqui Abbott and the gravel-studded depth of Mike Greaves and Simon Aldred (Cherry Ghost), whilst exciting new-comer Aaron Wright features alongside crowd favourite Gareth David (Los Campesinos) – all singing songs dedicated to each deadly sin. And it’s pulled together by Paul himself as he finally takes to the stage to unmask the eight, and deadliest, sin.

We’ve thrown together a spotify playlist of work by some of the singers that feature in THE 8TH which you should be able to listen to here.

If you type ‘The 8th Paul Heaton’ in to YouTube you can watch some terrible quality pirate recordings of last year’s show.

But to be honest, if you want to get a true flavour of the piece, you’d be best off clicking here and buying the album from amazon, which – along with the single ‘Lust’ – will be hitting the charts later this month.

But don’t just take our word for it. Describing the piece as “Leonard Bernstein meets Public Enemy”, the Independent on Sunday picked THE 8TH as their CD of the week last Sunday.

THE 8TH tour announced

We’re very excited to announce today that we’re taking our 2011 co-production with Manchester International Festival THE 8TH by Paul Heaton and book by Ché Walker back on the road again later this year presented by SJM Concerts.

Reg E Cathey in THE 8TH at The Manchester International Festival 2011

“Victim of an overdose or recipient of bullet
Just the harvest of the finger or the wrist
It’s the needle or the trigger, the 8th could push or pull it
As long as folk believe that he exists”
One of Manchester’s greatest songwriters Paul Heaton (The Beautiful South, The Housemartins), premieres an epic new pop song, THE 8TH, in a thrilling live show.
Joined onstage by his band and a host of special guests, Heaton transports you to a destitute neighbourhood where the seven deadly sins unfurl. From the seven an eighth is born – a new and thoroughly modern sin that imprisons all who cross its path.
THE 8TH’s book is written by Ché Walker who previously worked with us here at PP on Crazy Love back in 2007 and is directed by our very own Joint Artistic Director George Perrin.
So here’s where it’s heading:
Thursday 5th July @ Barbican Centre, London
Tuesday 10th July @ Lyceum Theatre, Sheffield
Wednesday 11th July @ St. Paul’s Church, Birmingham
Thursday 12th July@ Latitude Festival
With a cast including US hit TV show The Wire‘s Reg E Cathey it’s sure to be a hot ticket this Summer. So for more details on the show and how to book tickets check out THE 8TH page on our website