We finally did it. We had a night out on the town on Friday. Ok, so it wasn’t a proper night out in Manchester – we were both wearing coats, didn’t scream around Piccadilly Gardens, and took a cab home at a reasonable hour – but it was the first time in a long time that we’d ventured beyond the Burton Rd./Lapwing Lane junction for the entire evening. We began the evening with an Ethiopian meal at Habesha. Don’t let the entrance, via a kebab/fried chicken takeaway, put you off. The menu is simple and the food delicious and very, very filling. Then it was on to 57 Thomas Street for some beer (German obviously) and finally to Matt and Phreds to hear WorldService Project. A great set of funk jazz fused with all sorts of other stuff, with some Erik Truffaz-like moments, and some entertaining arrangements of Nirvana and Radiohead. For those of you in London you should definitely check them out at Ray’s Jazz Cafe at Foyles on the 30th November.
And our weekend of venturing beyond West Didsbury didn’t end there. Oh no. We also made it to the Whitworth Art Gallery on Saturday to see the ‘The Land Between Us’ exhibition. Highlights were the Turner watercolours, the Black Audio Film Collective 1982-98 Handsworth Songs (1986), and this thoughtful introduction to the exhibition:
‘But art isn’t the same as history, it’s about the making of ‘things’ whose only purpose is to be looked at, experienced and thought about. Art is good at waiting. As marks and stains on paper or flickerings on a screen its symbolic energies cross time to be made ‘new’ be readings which are individual and cultural, as well as historical.’ (Mary Griffiths, Curator of Modern Art, Whitworth Art Gallery).
Unlike art, our bellies aren’t good at waiting, so it was then off to the heaving Christmas market and the first Wurst of the festive season.