The Narrows don’t seem to do normal. Not that this is a bad thing, but weird seems to come somewhat naturally to them. So when it comes to filming a video for new single “There Are Ghosts In These Machines” it’s not entirely surprising that instead of setting themselves up in a studio and filming themselves playing the song with some half arsed lighting effects, they decided to march silently through Manchester with masks on and a huge banner on a Sunday afternoon. As you do”Â¦
So at 1pm on 1st April the band and about twenty of their fans met at the Victoria statue in Piccadilly Gardens, worked out a route and marched through town, in single file with masks on, whilst trying not to fall over a bollard or indeed, each other. The march was led from the front by lead vocalist Phil Drinkwater and guitarist Adam Hynes, marching, with masks whilst holding the banner with what has become the bands symbol.
Ok, so march through town on a nice Sunday afternoon, with no one saying anything and no one explaining anything. Nothing particularly special about that, especially when compared to some of the lunatics you see about town on a week. But this is The Narrows, like I said; they don’t do normal, or indeed uneventful.
Marching behind masks silently does provide an interesting insight into the mindset of some people. We hadn’t been marching for a minute before the first shout of “FUCKING WANKERS”Â was heard. Not long after that, one gentleman said loudly “FUCK YOUR PROTEST.”Â Erm”Â¦ ok. I must confess, I was tempted to stop the march, and explain (i.e. lie) that we were marching to get compensation for rape victims or something like that and see what reaction I got, but better taste and common sense prevailed.
The march itself started in Piccadilly Gardens, taking in Market Street and then halfway down Deansgate”Â¦ and then”Â¦ the free bus service. As if the march wasn’t surreal enough, it was decided to carry on the filming of the video on the free bus service that goes around Manchester. I’ll explain this blow for blow, and just try to picture it, with about fifteen people wearing masks. The bus was flagged down, and one by one we got on the half full bus and sat down where we could. So, there we are, interspersed between regular shoppers, sat on a bus, in complete silence, wearing masks which have no obvious meaning. And one stop later, with no one saying anything to anyone, one by one we all got off. I’m pretty sure at this point, someone, somewhere was stood on a top of a building somewhere with a sniper rifle wondering what the hell was going on and when they were going to get the go ahead to start picking us off.
So off the bus, and a natural end of the march and the shoot? You’d like to think so, but fate had dealt us an incredible hand. The bus had put us right outside the Church of Scientology shop. Quite the irony that a group of faceless wanderers with no discernible goal had ended up at this particular location. After trying to cross the road in masks, and successfully managing to avoid getting killed, a number of the crowd just stood outside the Scientology shop, with no intention of doing”Â¦ well anything really. The Scientologists though were scared shitless, as you haven’t seen a door shut so quickly with such a tangible sense of panic. The Narrows should send them a CD, the reaction could be hilarious. Although maybe not for them.
After the escapades on the bus, the run in the sinist”Â¦ erm”Â¦ deeply respectful and civic minded Church of Scientology and the mixed reactions from the people enjoying a sunny Sunday afternoon in town, our work was indeed done. A fine video was made, new friends were made. It was then time for the pub.
The single “There Are Ghosts In These Machines”Â is available now as a free download from the bands Bandcamp.
More of The Narrows music can be listened to on their Soundcloud page.
Words Liam Core Picture Katie McGuinness