Into the Archives: What LeftLion and Overall... Were Printing In Mays Gone By

Words: Jared Wilson
Sunday 24 May 2020
reading time: min, words

Our new regular feature delves back into the LeftLion and Overall There is a Smell of Fried Onions archives to find what Notts was up to back in the day...


25 Years Ago

From the pages of Overall magazine...

Sylie Dog was standing in the May 1995 election on a platform of free soft toilet rolls for the unwaged, dole for dogs and free tampons and contraceptives for all.  We’re not sure who was behind the campaign, but the fact that there was a fundraiser at the Skyy Club makes us think it was one of the local party crews. Needless to say, they were not elected.

Interview with the Vampire (Dir. Neil Jordan)
Heavenly Creatures (Dir. Peter Jackson)
Priest (Dir. Antonia Bird)

Two highly touted local emo-hardcore bands played a gig together at The Zone on King Edward Street (down the road from where Pryzm is now). While Manly Banister, the Overall reviewer, gushed over them, he did offer the following advice: “For both bands the problem is the same – Nottingham is yours and you run the risk from suffering the audience’s overfamiliarity. The M1 is there for the taking from the helm of a Transit van.”

15 Years Ago

From the pages of LeftLion...

Who remembers the ‘Slanty N’? Back in the days when the City Council had decided to replace the city’s old ‘Our Style Is Legendary’ Robin Hood motif with something a little more erm… generic. They tasked local design agency Purple Circle to come up with something, and the final piece received much abuse amid accusations of ‘wasting money’. Reading back, we were one of the more neutral voices at the time.

Star Wars: Episode III Revenge of the Sith (Dir. George Lucas)
Layer Cake (Dir. Matthew Vaughn)
Madagascar (Dirs. Eric Darnell & Tom McGrath)

Our May issue from fifteen years ago was a full-on Notts music scene special. It featured interviews with Amusement Parks on Fire, Bent, Detonate DJ Transit Mafia and seventies throwbacks Paper Lace. However, the overriding theme was wondering why we hadn’t seen a Notts band trouble the charts since KWS in 1992. Thankfully, that seems to have changed for the better since then. Our music listings were full of club nights like Spectrum, Psycle and Pure Filth. Dot To Dot festival launched with Punish The Atom, Ladytron and Lo-Ego on the bill.

10 Years Ago

From the pages of LeftLion...

Riding high from the success of classics like Gladiator, LA Confidential and A Beautiful Mind, antipodean actor Russell Crowe decided to have a stab at Robin Hood. It was the first major Hood film since Kevin Costner donned the famous tights, and we went bonkers about it with an entire issue dedicated to Notts’ original gangster. The cover shoot, featuring current-day Robin Ade Andrews, was shot in my living room. We went to see the film together as a team after the mag came out, and shared a collective sigh at Crowe’s attempted accent and, well, the rest of the film too. 

Other (better) films
Iron Man 2 (Dir. Jon Favreau)
Looking For Eric (Dir. Ken Loach)
Micmacs (Dir. Jean-Pierre Jeunet)

Believe it or not, back in the day they used to put on big free gigs in the Market Square. Regular live music was part of the plan of the 2007 rebuild and May Bank Holiday in 2010 saw the short-lived City Pulse festival take over featuring Boney M, Dr Feelgood, The Animals (minus a member or two) and Imelda May.

Whitney Houston made an appearance at Nottingham Arena and tickets were £50-100 (which was a lot of money for a ticket back then). Rock City had gigs from The Fall, Slayer and Chase and Status. Dot to Dot celebrated its fifth year with Zane Lowe, Mystery Jets, Ellie Goulding and Liars.

Local acts playing that month included Breadchasers, Fists, Maniere Des Bohemians, Pilgrim Fathers, Swimming, Rebel Soul Collective, Roy Stone (RIP) and We Show Up On Radar.

Spanky Van Dykes had just launched as a new venue and Late of the Pier were on the decks. Other promoters doing good stuff locally were Acoustickle, Detonate, Fuzzbox, Hello Thor, Influx and Smokescreen.

If you fancy a bit more Nottstalgia, head over to read these issues in their entirety online: 

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