The above picture, the only known listing of this gig that didn’t happen, is from an issue of Yellow Plastic, a fanzine edited by Rob Horrocks. Rob tells this story of the night:
In 1988 Basingstoke was privileged to witness a run of quality gigs at The Caribbean Club, Priestly Road – don’t look for it, it isn’t there anymore. I was 16 and my first gig there was early August on a Saturday. The House Of Love. They did Reading on the Friday, Basingstoke on the Saturday and then did it for the kids on the Sunday – and that, as we all know, is where their problems started! You could say that the Basingstoke gig was the last great House of Love set.
The Reading and Basingstoke gigs were promoted by one Declan Quinn who was reading based. A biker type who had been doing good things at the After Dark in Reading for years with occasional forays into north Hampshire and donut city. The Brilliant Corners, The Flatmates …. errr My Bloody Valentine.
The Basingstoke scene was chronicled in the local paper with a full page LIVE! section every Friday where gigs at Dryden Hall, The Pig And Whistle (as mentioned on the first page of Joe Jackson’s excellent autobiography) and of course the United Caribbean Association Club were listed.
Posters around the town near the two further education establishments, the one nightclub and bus station also advertised the gig though I have no memory of handbills in the record shop. The posters were cool. A2/1 – dayglo and usually with the bands logo. The listings usually appeared a month/six weeks ahead of time. And let’s not forgot the trusty NME listings which were usually present and correct.
On the occasion of the Spacemen 3 gig. The ONLY listing was the Friday before the gig.
The ONLY poster appeared the week before the gig.
It was on the sign by the parking meter in the carpark close to Martine’s (the only nightclub) and it was on yellow dayglo stock. I remember the paste was still wet when I saw it.
It did use the acclaimed and disputed triangle logo …. but it was too little too late.
Come showtime on the Saturday the venue is occupied by members of the Hook contingent (one mini metro full) and the Tadley lot (later known as the TADS) and one party of mystery folk. At the appointed hour the mystery folks stood up and made their way to the stage. They were the support band. No one else arrived during their set. So by the time our heroes were due… well, the rest you know already. Spacemen 3 decided not to play and Jason explained the situation to the audience. The promoter also gave the audience (both of them) his side of the story and things got heated. That was the gig. A solo acapella from Jason Pierce you could say. The content of the argument between JP and DQ included/came to centre around the specific contract breach of failure to provide refreshments on arrival. In my opinion SP3 were well within their rights not to play.