A-Z: Catatonia – Catch

Catatonia – Live At Kulturbolaget (28th Nov 1999)
This is another of my fave bootlegs – I listened to it a lot throughout 2000 when there wasn’t a lot going on Catatonia-wise. I’m not entirely sure who copied it for me now – I think it was Sami Muldia, though it might have been Vihra, or possibly someone else. It was one of my international catfan friends, anyway! I feel bad for not remembering as am naturally v grateful.

Catatonia – Northampton Roadmender 26/4/01
Another fave bootleg. I soooo wish I’d managed to go to this gig now! It was announced after the MEN Arena gig, as was a warm-up for it, therefore in a much smaller venue, plus Big Leaves supported, who I never got to see live! But yeah, was their first gig in well over a year, so must have been a brilliant atmosphere. Naturally I looked into going, but I was at Uni at the time and Northampton’s not exactly down the road from Leeds! Plus it was on like a Thursday or something, so was awkward with needing to go to lectures and stuff – not that that alone would necessarily have been a problem! 😉 But yeah, just seemed infeasable (unfeasable?! Meh) in the end, especially as I was going to be seeing them 2 days later in Manchester. Plus they’d surely be touring later in the year… yeah, that was dumb logic! Never assume things with bands! Anyway, I wasn’t at this gig, but at least I could imagine I was with the bootleg! The set-list consists almost entirely of songs from International Velvet and Paper Scissors Stone (which wasn’t released yet at this point) – the only exceptions being ‘You’ve Got A Lot To Answer For’ and ‘Do You Believe In Me?’. Again am v grateful to whoever copied it for me, but again have forgotten! Hey, it was 6 years ago! Hell, that’s a scary thought. Anyway, for some reason I’m thinking it might have been Jamie?!? Or Rob?! Could be well wrong there though.

Catatonia – Live In Manchester 28/4/01
Ah, my 2nd and last Catatonia gig! Memorable in so many ways. One such way is the fact it was my sister’s 18th birthday! Yep I chose seeing Catatonia over seeing my sister on her 18th! Bad sister I am. Sorry Jade! Although I don’t regret it!! ;-P My Step-Dad memorably said to me “It’s not like you’ll never get to see them again!” – yes, he jinxed me!!!! But yeah, I really wish I had a bootleg of the whole gig (well, all of Catatonia’s set I mean! Not the Dum-Dums’ set or anything, ha ha.), as this one just contains the songs that were broadcast on the radio about a week later. I know they exist as once saw one on Ebay, but sadly missed out on it and haven’t seen another one since. Damn.
And oh, I’ve reached the end of my Catatonia CDs! I hope most of my MySpace blog readers don’t stop reading now – you’re bound to also like some other bands that come up I’m sure. And if not there’s always Cerys’ solo stuff once I reach ‘M’! He he. But for now on to…

Catch – Catch (album)
This CD is one of my most prized possessions. No, really! Do you know how long I waited to own an actual copy of this album?! 8 years!!! Ok, start at the beginning… I’m not sure how many of you reading this will even remember Catch – they were a bit of a One Hit Wonder I suppose, though did release 2 singles. The one you’re most likely to remember is ‘Bingo’, which was released towards the end of 1997. I specifically remember it was the end of ’97 as it contains the lyric “I don’t know anything, I’m only 17” and how old did I turn in September ’97? Oh yes, 17! But yes, I just totally fell in love with that song – the lyrics, the change in tempo…it’s just fab! It’s still in my top 5 most favourite songs ever infact! I know it’s on MySpace somewhere…hang on…oh yes, here 🙂 Also while googling for info I just found that eil.com were selling a copy of the Bingo promo vid!!! Needless to say I just bought that 😀 Eeeeee, I vaguely remember seeing it back in ’97, but haven’t seen it since. Wow, can’t wait for that to arrive. Anyway, back to ’97 – I bought one of the ‘Bingo’ singles and was delighted to find the b-sides were also great. This of course then prompted me into buying CD2 too. ‘Dive In’ was then released, which I also loved, so I bought both CDs of that, again v impressed by the level of b-sides. I then eagerly waited for the surely-imminent album release. I waited… waited some more… lots of waiting… checking V2 website… ‘coming soon’… still ‘coming soon’… V2 are lying to me aren’t they?… more waiting… no album!!! Grrrrrr! Why was it not released?? Why?!! Wikipedia tells me that ‘an album was quickly released in Indonesia due to the band’s popularity there, but was never released in the UK due to Slater being unhappy with it at the time’. Hmm. I didn’t know this at the time though obviously, plus surely V2 must have had something to do with that decision, rather than just Toby? :-/ Whatever. It didn’t appear anyway and I was unaware of the release in Indonesia! So instead I had to make do with the 10 songs I had from the singles, which wasn’t bad really I suppose – thank god they’d released 2 CDs for each single 🙂 A couple of years went by and I then found out that Ben and Wayne from Catch had formed the band Thirteen:13, who I saw support Ooberman, having just gotten into them 🙂 Naturally I was psyched they were still making music – an interesting thing about Catch is that they were very difficult to pigeon-hole. Their music was pop really I suppose, but with an indie-quirky edge to it. Visually they all looked very young (well, they were I suppose!) and almost boybandy dare I say it – again with an indie edge though! They definitely had the indie hair going on! 🙂 Hang on, can find pic…ta da (Ben, Toby, Wayne)! They were obviously not manufactured or anything though, they were a proper band, with Toby writing all the songs (except for ‘Start Of Something’ which was co-written with Wayne) and also doing quite a bit of the production. So yeah, the fact they couldn’t be pigeon-holed probably didn’t help them in music-land sadly, though it did make me love them!

Anyway, where was I? Oh yeah, had discovered Thirteen:13. It was another few years after that when I came across Toby’s solo stuff on the internet. I was very excited to find that, as Toby had always been my fave I have to confess! I downloaded all the songs from his shop and then played them endlessly 🙂 A little while afterwards I discovered that William, who I know from the Oobtube (Ooberman forum!), has a copied CD of the Catch album! Happily he offered to copy it for me, which he kindly did. Finally I could get to hear the album I’d been wanting to hear for years! So satisfying! Yeah a lot of the songs sounded a bit dated and very poppy compared to the stuff I’d now gotten used to hearing from Toby and Thirteen:13 (although they’d also split up by this point!), but I still loved it. 🙂 Another couple of years passed and it was 2006 – randomly I search for Catch on Ebay and what do I find? An actual copy of the album!! Yes, the Indonesian release!! Although it was being sold by someone in Australia. It was ‘Buy It Now’ and only about £6 or something! So yes, this is the CD I’m playing right this second. Complete with lyrics booklet and everything. It makes me very happy to finally own it 😀

In some kind of conclusion – Catch will most likely remain one of my favourite bands and ‘Bingo’ one of my favourite songs. I’ll also always be interested in what the individual band members are up to, from the now-defunkt ‘Thirteen:13’ (free MP3s at that link!), to ‘The Honeymoon’ (who Wayne formed with Thorun Magnusdottir), to Wayne’s current band ‘Boy Cried Wolf’ (check out the song ‘Town Of Mice’ at that link – it’s fab!! Wayne’s also been playing with JDB and the Manics lately, which is pretty cool), to Ben’s band ‘Ben And The Pimps’, which has now kinda merged into ‘White Russians’, to Toby’s solo stuff as tobyslater and finally (and particularly!) to Toby’s current stuff as ‘Kunta Kinte’ (which is just all kinds of fabulous!). That’s an awful lot of brilliant music to come from a group of 3 guys who are pretty-much the same age as me!! And if anyone’s in London on Friday 13th and fancies a night of great music, dressing-up and vaudeville performers then get ye down to White Mischief! Alas I can’t make it myself, but it sounds like it should be pretty special. You can listen to Kunta Kinte’s ‘Film Of My Life’ at that MySpace link too by the way.

Kudos to anyone who read all that! Particularly if you’re not already a fan of Catch and/or Toby, Ben and Wayne’s other projects!

Catch – Bingo CD1 (single)
The first Catch CD I bought. You can tell it’s been well loved! It came with 3 postcard prints, which I’ve still got somewhere, though I’m not entirely sure where. They’re not in the CD case anyway! I know I used to have the Toby one on my wall, he he. Talking of Toby, did anyone else watch ‘Any Dream Will Do’ last night? Call me a sad-case if you like, but come on, Graham Norton, John Barrowman and Jason Donovan all in one show?!!! Yes, I may look female, but I’m secretly a gay man!! 😉 I mean, come on, my major musical icons throughout my life so far have been who? Kylie Minogue, Freddie Mercury and Cerys Matthews!! If that doesn’t make me camp, I’m not sure what does. Anyway, ‘Any Dream Will Do’… one of the could-be Josephs is a guy called ‘Keith’. He doesn’t really look like a Keith if you ask me, but hey! Infact he looks like a Toby! Everytime he was on screen all I could think was – ‘it’s Toby Slater!’ Toby in the days of this picture though, rather than this one – not that he looks a lot older it has to be said. He didn’t look like him so much when he smiled, which sadly he is doing in the only picture of him I can find, but still…here’s Keith. I totally want him to win now, just because he looks like Toby Slater! Ha ha, it’s the little things in life that keep me amused. Plus I never got to see Jason Donovan as Joseph (*sobs* I so badly wanted to), so if a Toby-alike won I’d actually be tempted to go see it! Hell, I’d probably be tempted anyway, I love musicals! I’m telling ya, gay man! Although obviously it would be better if Jason Donovan would just do it again 😉 I’m not sure if I’m gonna be able to make his London gig now, which I have tickets to, so yeah if someone could phone up Andrew Lloyd-Webber and persuade him that this whole TV-show search-for-a-Joseph thing is silly and that he really wants to just get Jason to do it again, that would be fabulous! Thank you.
‘Bitten By You’ – Yeah I am still listening to the Catch single while typing all this nonsense! Love this song!! Listened to it a lot last year actually.

Catch – Bingo CD2 (single)
I think I’ve probably typed enough about Catch for now! Infact I think I’m gonna start foraging in my freezer for something resembling food and see what I can watch on my new (albeit 2nd-hand) plasma TV 😀

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