Kino – Loser’s Day Parade
Posted on Apr 10th, 2007 by Alan @ 10:27 am


Kino is like a mini version of Spinal Tap in terms of the number of line-up changes they’ve had. The first line-up (the one that recorded their album “Picture”) featured Chris Maitland (formerly of Porcupine Tree) on drums, Pete Trewavas (Marillion) on bass, John Beck (It Bites) on keyboards, and John Mitchell (Arena and The Urbane) on guitar and vocals. The presence of the first three of those were enough to pique my interest, but I didn’t really know anything about John Mitchell. To me, Arena were Mick Pointer’s band and I’d never really heard anything by them (I probably have the same sort of stereotype of them as most people on the planet do of Marillion!)

So that was the album in the bag. Towards the end of 2004, Kino got offered the chance to perform on the “Rockpalast” show on German TV which seemed to good to turn down. But as Chris Maitland was unavailable they needed a stand-in. Bob Dalton (also of It Bites) was lined up, but in the end also couldn’t make it because of commitments in another band. So at the last minute they turned to a guy called Steve Hughes who I know absolutely nothing about, and he took the drum stool for their TV performance.

I saw Kino in April 2005 in London, by which time Bob Dalton was available again and put in a typically solid performance. The guy is like a living, breathing metronome. Phenomenal. That was a really good show, and they even threw in a couple of It Bites numbers to the set which left me craving the It Bites reunion that had been rumoured for a while.

It turns out I didn’t have so long to wait! Francis Dunnery’s lack of availability (he lives in the US now, so scheduling time together was a problem) prompted them to turn to John Mitchell as their new frontman in 2006. So in the end that Kino show featured three quarters of the new It Bites line-up.

I’ll post some It Bites soon, but for now here is my top pick from the Kino album.

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The album is available to buy from InsideOut Records, and from all good record stores (and some bad ones).

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