Banned From Utopia – Gig Review December 2014

BAnned FRom Utopia - The Scene - Dec 2014 - _0014lBanned From Utopia
The Scene, Swansea
December 2014

No one can argue that Frank Zappa was a hugely influential and talented composer and musician opening up a wide range of sounds and approaches as he delivered Avant-grade music that gained a huge following up to BAnned FRom Utopia - The Scene - Dec 2014 - _0116lhis untimely death on December 4 1993. It was special that Banned From Utopia were delivering his music on the eve of the 21st Anniversary of his passing. Band From Utopia comprises an imposing line-up of artist who are immersed in ZapBAnned FRom Utopia - The Scene - Dec 2014 - _0255lpa’s music, two lead singers up front are Ray White and Bobby Martin who also played keys, French Horn and Saxophone then Frank’s longest running drummer Chad Wackerman; Tom Fowler on bass, Jamie Kime, guitar and vocals and Albert Wing Saxophone combining years of experience of playing with Zappa and definitely had the spirit of Frank with them tonight. Banned From Utopia, refers to Frank Zappa’s album ‘The Man From Utopia‘; they bring the music alive with true freeform interpretation and the packed house loved every note delivered.

BAnned FRom Utopia - The Scene - Dec 2014 - _0227lThe set list was magnificent with a mix of the better known numbers and those that are truly difficult and eclectic this is music to savour as you absorb the tones and interplay and let the music take you to a different dimension.  They are the real deal this is not a tribute reproducing note for note, they played with Zappa have a wealth of experience of how Zappa shaped the concert so that it had a feeling of you were not sure what would happen next. This band formed a year after Zappa’s death put on a performance of music that was amazing, playing with passion and they wanted the audience to enjoy every note and phrasing from all the instruments. This was a gig where you were entertained, from the opening Chunga with an amazing Saxophone reprise from Albert Wing, through to the closing track from the second encore Peaches.  Every song/instrumental was in the set list for a reason and the conducting by Bob was fantastic as he BAnned FRom Utopia - The Scene - Dec 2014 - _0028lasked the members to play louder, fuller, softer, harder stop this is not a band it is an orchestra of sound.  We had audience participation and even some getting up on stage to emulate Bobby with the conducting anything goes when Banned From Utopia come to Swansea. Including Ray having the opportunity to use the guitar played and made famous by the great Welsh guitarist Mickey Jones the founder and constant member of Man. The highlights for me were Jamie’s guitar playing on Zomby Wolf, the collective skills on City of Tiny Lights and a divine cover of the Allman Brothers, Whipping Post. They played for two and half hours gave the packed crowds two encores and we wanted more but sadly the concert was ended with the cleverness, invention and the essence of Zappa ringing in our ears.

For more photographs – follow this link Liz Aiken Photography

SET LIST 3rd December 2014

1. Chunga
2. No Heart
3. Marqueson’s Chicken
4. I’m The Slime
5. You Are What You Is
6. Dupree’s Paradise
7. Trouble Every Day
8. Village
9. Zomby Woof
10. OC Lumber Truck
11. Baltimore
12. Society Pages
13. Banboozled By Love
14. City OF Tiny Lights

Encore 1
Whipping Post

Encore 2


Band Members

Robert (Bobby) Martin – Frank Zappa 1981-88 – vocals, keyboards, sax, French horn
Ray White – Frank Zappa 1978-84 – vocals, guitar
Tom Fowler– Frank Zappa 1973-75 – Bass
Albert Wing – Frank Zappa 1988 – Tenor Sax, Soprano Sax
Chad Wackerman – Frank Zappa 1981-88 – Drums
Jamie Kime – Zappa Plays Zappa 2006-12 – Guitar, vocals





.BAnned FRom Utopia - The Scene - Dec 2014 - _0014l BAnned FRom Utopia - The Scene - Dec 2014 - _0050l

Newsletter Updates

Enter your email address below to subscribe to our newsletter

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.