Saturday, 27 November 2021

Electric Six - Boileroom, Guildford - November 26th, 2021

This one came out of the blue!

I'd seen Electric Six in Reading 3 years before and, even though I'd quite enjoyed myself, wasn't sure I would again, but I saw this gig advertised when seeing Ren Harvieu and being so local and cheap, decided I'd go along.

Google was showing them as playing in Holland on this date and few of the ticket sellers' sites were showing this event, so I can only assume that the Dutch event was cancelled and the Boileroom gig added at short notice.

However, the late announcement didn't stop people coming from far and wide to see Electric Six and The Boiler Room was packed in a way I hadn't seen since my visit to see The Hoosiers some years ago.

The support band was a Guildford Band, Neon Islands, but to be honest, the sound was so bad for them (combined with most people chatting while they played, further muddling the sound) that it was hard to tell if they were good or not.

Electric Six came on around 9:30PM and featured a similar lineup to that I'd seen in Reading, back in 2018 and they had a lot less space to play with on The Boiler Room's tiny stage, but one thing they are never short of is energy.

I'd ended up right near the front for the start of their performance, with a group of 30 something male friends and a couple from Detroit, the woman of which said (and I've no reason to doubt her) that Jimmy, the drummer, was a relative.

The lineup was, of course, fronted by Dick Valentine, the only Fire period member remaining, but a couple of the other guitarists also looked familiar.

Dick thanked us for coming on such short notice and joked about being desparate to sell us some of the many albums they'd made and as he went along there was a running joke about each track being off "one of the albums".

I have to admit, most of my familiarity with their material comes from the debut album, "Fire", which features "Improper Dancing", "Gay Bar", "Danger, High Voltage!","She's White","Synthesiser" and "Naked Pictures (Of Your Mother)", all of which featured in the setlist, scattered amongst other tracks from later albums, including the openers from the latest album, "Bride Of The Devil" and the earlier "Switzerland".

There's a relentlessness to their playing and to Dick's vocals, occassionally broken on tracks like the mellow "Syntheiser", and that was there in abundance, but I also appreciated their musicality on this ocassion, many of the lesser known tracks showing off the band's talents.

On introducing "Rock and Roll Evacuation", Dick joked that it was written in response to George W Bush's election "When it seemed like the worst thing that could happen to America" and then smiled and said "And then something else happened", leaving the audience in no doubt of who that was.

The set, with the encore ("Dance Commander"), lasted about 90 minutes and I went back to the bar about 2/3rds way through as I needed a glass of water from too much dancing and the general crush. It's all one space though, so I was still in the room where they were performing, but not in the melee at the front any more.

It was, to say the least, a lively, exciting gig with the band seeming to be enjoying themselves too.

"Gay Bar" was, oddly, played in two short sections, which I didn't remember from Reading, but from the set lists I've found online, it seems common these days, at least. It was still enjoyable and did give us the pleasure of the intro twice, which is a definite highlight.

"Improper Dancing" is probably my favourite track and that had a great rendition, combined with "(Who The Hell Just) Call My Phone".

Of the tracks I was less familiar with, "Rock and Roll Evacuation", "Dance Epidemic", "I Buy The Drugs" and "Slices Of You" have stuck in my mind the following day, but everything was delivered (and received) with the same enthusiasm and energy.

The feeling I'd had at Reading was that their tracks get a bit samey after a while and I have to say that I had the same feeling to a degree this time as well, but I definitely enjoyed this gig more than the Reading one.

Somehow the band seemed more relaxed, Dick Valentine looked healthier and they seemed be enjoying themselves more, but maybe I'm just projecting my own feelings.

Either way, it was a fun night and, with the postponement of French band's, Keep Dancing Inc, gig until next May (as COVID continues to play havoc with normal life - As I correct a couple of typos a few days later, we have new restrictions coming into place!), a great way to almost certainly end my 2021 gig going.

Electric Six are definitely a band that knows how to deliver a good night out! Thanks guys.

Setlist
Mr. Woman
Bride of the Devil
Rock and Roll Evacuation
After Hours
Naked Pictures (of Your Mother)
Down at McDonnelzzz
The New Shampoo
Gay Bar
Gay Bar Part Two
She's White
Slices of You
Be My Dark Angel
Infected Girls
Improper Dancing / (Who the Hell Just) Call My Phone
Danger! High Voltage
Synthesizer
Daddy's Boy
Dance Epidemic
I Buy the Drugs
Encore:
Dance Commander

Wednesday, 17 November 2021

Ren Harvieu - Boileroom, Guildford - November 16th, 2021

As the winter nights drew in, I found myself wanting a bit more entertainment

After a highly enjoyable evening at The Boileroom with Goan Dogs and their support, I scanned the upcoming dates there again and spotted Ren Harvieu was playing on the 16th November.

As is often the way, the name meant nothing to me, but a quick Google revealed a woman with an impressively good voice, so I booked a ticket.

I was more than a little miffed to find Guildford council had changed the parking to mean I was £4 out of pocket just to park, but I decided I'd ty not to let that spoil the evening.

There was virtually no-one in the Boileroom when I arrived and the tall man in the stripey trousers turned out (not unexpectedly) to be one of the support acts!

There were two billed support acts, but both actually turned out to be members of Ren Harvieu's band.

The first, Felix Holt, sat at the side of the stage at what could well have been a Hammond Organ, which seemed to intermittently play one note and then be changed a bit later to another. I'm pretty sure his whole set consisted of just two songs, the first, a dirge sang in a Bob Dylan style and lasting at least 10 minutes. The second was marginally more tuneful and melodic, but he defintely wasn't the best support act I've seen this year!

Next up was the lanky, stripey trouser clad singer, Robert Chaney, who was more conventional and definitely more enjoyable, playing a guitar and singing. Again, as a solo act, he wasn't great, but I'd been a bit spoilt by the Goan Dogs' support acts - He wasn't terrible.

At around 9PM, Felix and Robert, a cap wearing woman, a man it what looked like a terrible grey wig (I really hope it was a wig!) and two familiar looking people took the stage, followed shortly by Ren herself.

The familiar pair were Romeo and Michelle Stodart from The Magic Numbers - Not a band I'm a particular fan of, but I was aware of them and recognised them. Indeed I'm pretty sure Michelle supported Ben Watt when I saw him at the Boileroom, but looking back I didn't mention who the support was. I do recall, though, that she was pretty good and I was impressed to see Ren had got them onboard (It turned out that Romeo was, to a great extent, involved in her return to recording and touring, so he deserves thanks for that!)

Sadly, the venue was still poorly attended with less than 50 people present.

While it must have been disappointing for Ren and her band, they didn't let it show, putting on a quirky, entertaining show which was a mix of tracks from her latest album ('Revel In The Drama' - Self described as her 'second debut album') and her successful first album ('Through The Night').

The band were great, with particular credit going to the be-hatted woman who put in a virtuso display playing keyboards, violin and even a saw at one point and harmonising brilliantly with Ren on some songs.

However, the undeniable highlight was Ren's voice.

Why she isn't a huge superstar is difficult to understand to me. Her voice is so flexible, strong and clear, never jarring but capable of a great range. As she explained the history of 'Salford Superstar', she joked about children who sprang from the womb trained by Maria Carey, but her voice, while beautiful and wide ranging, never strays into the gimmicky histrionics of MC (a singer who always sounds like a cat in a tumble dryer to me...).

They kicked off with 'Teenage Mascara','Strange Things' and 'This Is How You Make Me Feel' from the new album, followed by a song called 'Soft' (a great song, but not listed on either album) and then 'Through The Night' and 'Do Right By Me', singles from the debut album.

'Is It Love','Dramatic Nonchalance' and 'Salford Superstar' don't appear on either album, but were highly enjoyable, while 'Yes Please', 'Curves and Swerves' (combined with 'A Wow and A Whizz' in what Ren described as a 'megamix') and 'Open Up Your Arms' were taken from the two albums.

Oddly the finale 'The Wonder Of It All', featuring the saw playing, felt a bit of an anti-climax and, sadly, there was no encore (in my experience, it's a rare thing at the Boileroom).

Personally, I'd have loved to hear her cover of 'Something', which is on YouTube, live as an encore.

Between tracks she chatted and seemed a very personable woman. Her long hiatus was, at least partly, due to a spine breaking accident between the recording and release of her first accident, and she talked about that (a little) and how she came to singing as a child.

A couple of times Ren observed that we were a small audience (hardly our fault), but that she hoped to see us again next year with the release of another album.

I really hope she does come back and that a bigger audience are drawn to her music.

If Ren Harvieu returns, I'll be there - I have to say, she probably has the most wonderful voice I've heard live.

Setlist
Teenage Mascara
Strange Things
This Is How You Make Me Feel
Soft
Through The Night
Do Right By Me
Is It Love
Dramatic Nonchalance
Yes Please
Salford Superstar
Curves and Swerves
A Wow and A Whizz
Open Up Your Arms
The Wonder Of It All

PS Apologies for the terrible photos - I got a different camera and now realise I had it set on the lowest setting!

Friday, 29 October 2021

The Goan Dogs (Plus Worm Immortality Team & Pattern Pusher) - Boileroom, Guildford - October 25th, 2021

I'd been to see the Goan Dogs just before lockdown in 2020 and enjoyed it, so when I saw they were coming back I bought a ticket.

This time it was a cold Monday evening, when I turned up and, as before, there weren't many people there.

On this occasion there were two support acts, Worm Immortality Team and Pattern Pusher, and the first were soon on.

A few more people had arrived by then and a group of rather nerdy looking teenagers arrived and started playing - Initially they didn't look too promising, but then a waif-like girl appeared and started singing.

Musically, they were OK, but the girl's performance was quite interesting, lifting them to something worth listening to.

They got a good reaction from the audience and got a rousing applause when they finished. It was nice, too, to see them in the audience for the Goan Dogs later on!

Pattern Pusher were a three piece, self-described as an 'odd pop trio', with a lively bassist (who was even in the audience at one point!), a drummer and the lead singer who also played keyboards.

They had a more polished sound than the Worm Immortality Team and a more polished performance working through a cheerful, dancey set of tracks and certainly got the audience moving even more than 'the Team' had.

Maybe they could be accused of being a bit middle of the road, but the sound was pleasant and catchy and their performance was professional.

So two great support acts to get us started, the bar was pretty high! (Well the prices were at £6 a pint! But as my ticket had cost me about a tenner I was more than happy with the cost of the evening so far and the main act hadn't even played yet!).

And so to the Goan Dogs.

Since I'd last seen them I understand they'd got some radio play and while the small venue wasn't packed, there was certainly more people than 2020 and most people knew who they'd come to see, at least had heard their single on the radio.

Most of their songs tonight were taken from their recently released debut album and the tracks I knew were mostly absent, which was a bit of a shame as some of those were excellent.

Once again, they were very good live. I still can't really classify their sound, but it certainly felt, on this ocassion to have taken a slightly improvised, jazzy direction, which probably wasn't as catchy as older tracks, but certainly worked well in a live setting.

There was a lot of dancing, clapping and foot-tapping going on by the end of their set and the whole evening seemed almost absurdly good value when you consider the eye-watering prices some big acts charge to see them.

Bang for the buck, Worm Immortality Team, Pattern Pusher and the Goan Dogs blow Coldplay or Adele out of the water and I'm pretty sure I wouldn't have enjoyed a cold Monday with either of them half as much!

Setlist (Partial from Birmingham)
Call Your Mum
Passing Through
I Don't Want To Fight
Drinking on a School Night
Shut Up

Thursday, 14 October 2021

Blancmange - The Brook, Southampton - October 13th, 2021

It'd been a long time coming

I can't remember exactly when I'd booked my ticket to go and see Blancmange (Now Neil Arthur and a couple of musicians), but the event was first scheduled for 24th October 2020, a leisurely Saturday evening.

With all the COVID chaos of the last 2 years, though (which had meant my last live music event was February 2020), it was rescheduled twice and here I was on a Wednesday in 2021.

The drive down the M3 was easy enough and I arrived in time to see Finlay Shakespeare, the support act, take the stage.

I can see why his music might seem a good match to a Blancmange audience, but he definitely didn't 'float my boat' - With a strong electronic backing he just seemed to shout his lyrics and get increasingly sweaty.

To be fair, some of the music was quite good, but his delivery was decidedly off-putting. If he cares, I'd suggest he might be better off to find a good vocalist and form a band.

He got polite applause, but I definitely wouldn't pay to see him, if I'm honest.

There was around a 30 minute hiatus while we waited for Blancmange and then two young musicians appeared to take up their places behind a synthesizer and a electronic drum kit.

Neil Arthur then appeared, looking fit and youthful (and remarkably like a friend of mine!) and launched into a rather John Cooper Clarke-like song about winning Crackerjack pencils. There were a couple of tracks like this in the setlist, odd, but not too distracting - I believe they were both from the latest album, but I'll admit I'm only really familiar with Blancmange's early material.

That early material was fairly represented with Waves, Living On The Ceiling, Feel Me, The Day Before You Came (sadly the keyboard level rather swamped Neil's voice on this one) and the encore, Don't Tell Me, all featuring.

With a lot of albums (most from the last 10 years), there was a lot of material I was unfamiliar with, but a lot was enjoyable, but I'd be lying if I said I didn't enjoy the early stuff the most. On this occasion, being on a nostalgia trip was fine with me, but the whole performance was upbeat and enjoyable.

I wasn't in the best frame of mind for an evening out, my mother having been admitted to hospital that morning, and I didn't know for sure when I set out if I'd attend (I found out she was staying in and I couldn't visit, on the way), but I had a good time and it was an enjoyable and welcome distraction.

Worth the price of the ticket, certainly, and it was great to be able to enjoy a live gig again - Next up, the Goan Dogs again!

Setlist (From Norwich, but I think it's right):
Game Above My Head
In Your Room
I Can't Explain
Mindset
What's Your Problem?
Clean Your House
Waves
I've Seen the Word
Not a Priority
What's the Time?
This A State
Last Night (I Dreamt I Had a Job)
The Day Before You Came(ABBA cover)
I Prefer Solitude(Fader cover)
Living on the Ceiling
Feel Me
Blind Vision
Encore:
Don't Tell Me

Wednesday, 19 February 2020

Goan Dogs - Boileroom, Guildford - February 15th, 2020

Another case of trying something new and liking it!

After enjoying Skinny Lister and finding myself deep in the January blues, I decided to see who was playing locally soon.

I scanned the upcoming gigs at Aldershot's West End Centre, but nothing took my fancy, so I started looking at the calendar for the Boileroom in Guildford.

I checked out some of the acts on Youtube and soon discovered that the Goan Dogs seemed quite interesting.

I bought a ticket for a bargain tenner and waited.

Storm Dennis ('The least threatening name for a storm' as Wyse, the support act, described it - I guess she'd never heard of 'The Menace'!) arrived, promising high wind and heavy rain, but Guildford was in a lull from about 7 to Midnight, so I figured it wouldn't be too much of a problem, but as I drove to Guildford it was noticeable how few cars there were on the roads and Guildford town centre was remarkably quiet too.

I found on-street parking and arrived in time for the support act, Wyse.

I was a bit surprised to see there was no wire mesh separating the audience from the, very low, stage, because it had been there when I'd seen Ben Watt and The Hoosiers there, but both times, the venue had been packed and someone suggested it may be put up when busy to stop the audience falling into the performers. There wasn't much chance of that this evening.

Sadly, when Wyse (a young woman, back by Matt - I think - on his guitar) started there were just 15 of us in the venue!

I won't pretend Wyse filled me with enthusiasm, but the two of them were competent enough and warmly received by the small (but growing, slightly) audience, she just wasn't my cuppa, but I can imagine others might enjoy her style (I've read some comments comparing it to Bjork) and she certainly wasn't untalented, so look her up.

A pause, of course, followed while Wyse's kit was removed and then the Goan Dogs themselves arrived and carried out what sounded like a final soundcheck for a few minutes, before wandering off again.

About 9:15 they came back and the lights fell. By now the audience had risen to around 50 people, which was a real shame for the band, performing, they said, live for the first time in two years.

I'd listened to a few of their tracks on Youtube, so knew the first song 'Passing Through' and they sounded pretty good (I did ask the sound man to lift the vocal a little as it was hard to hear and, to his credit, he did and it was better after that), much as you would hope from a live performance of a song you'd only heard recorded before.

The Bristol based band describe themselves as playing 'Warped Guitar Pop' which is fair enough as far as it goes. They're a guitar band and their sound is fairly 'pop-y', but what the 'warped' adds to that is hard to define and I struggled to think of who they reminded me, if anyone, and to be honest, nearly a week later I'm no nearer doing so.

At moments, I detected hints of the early Police in their vaguely reggaeish sound, but I'm quite sure most would struggle to hear it.

Whatever they do, though, they do very well and their distinctive sound worked well, mixing that with witty lyrics on songs like "The Grid", "Flying Business Class" and "Drifting Apart".

They sounded good live with no signs of rustiness in their performance and the audience seemed to really enjoy the gig, I certainly did.

It was, though, a fairly short set at around 75 minutes with no encore - After saying how much I'd enjoyed them, I asked one of the band if they were doing any more songs as he stepped out of the stage area, but he said they didn't have a huge amount of material, not having performed for a while.

Overall, though it was a great little gig, if the tiny audience did keep the atmosphere a little subdued and I hope it was mostly the threat of poor weather that kept people at home rather than hearing them as they really deserve a bigger audience and some proper success.

I hope too, that it won't dissuade them coming back to the Boileroom as I'd go and see them there again.

When you think of some of the performers who achieve chart success, it seems incredible that a bunch of talented lads like Goan Dogs aren't a household name.

If you get the chance go and see them, they are a great band with a distinctive sound and deserve more attention.

Monday, 20 January 2020

The Vox Beatles - St John's Church, Farncombe - January 18th, 2020

What can you say about The Beatles?

Undoubtedly one of the most loved and influential bands of the 20th century, but possibly one whose songs are so ingrained in popular culture that they're taken for granted or even rather disparaged by some in more recent generations.

The one thing you can say without any fear of dispute is that you'll never get to see them perform live! They, famously, gave up touring very early in their career (tired of no-one being able to hear them above the screaming of 10,000 girls and a few boys, no doubt) and, aside from the famous rooftop event at the very end of their career, they never wavered in that.

So that explains, to a great extent, why I was back at St John's Church in Farncombe on a freezing night in January.

Part of it was simply that I fancied a night out, the £16 entry fee seemed very reasonable and the reviews of The Vox Beatles (and some YouTube videos) suggested they were a decent Beatles tribute band.

So, having quite enjoyed the Illegal Eagles a couple of years earlier, despite my doubts about tribute bands, I bought a ticket way back in April 2019 (I think I may even have been the very first person to do so!).

It was a frosty night even as I left home to drive the 15 miles or so to Farncombe village.

Once inside the Church Hall (which doubles as a bar for music events), I was surprised to see a long queue of people snaking from the door to the Church, obviously keen to get a good seat.

I could hear the band warming up at one point and they sounded pretty decent through the door and about 7:35 the door was opened and in we went.

One thing I had forgotten about St John's Church was that the pews are rock hard, once again you could spot the regulars, as they'd bought cushions with them! It was also fairly chilly, but not quite so much that you needed to keep your coat on, which was a relief.

Just before 8, the band appeared, dressed in the 'Cavern Style' leather jackets and black roll-neck sweaters.

From the off it was apparent that, unlike the Illegal Eagles, The Vox Beatles were going to play the characters (John, Paul, George and Ringo) of the band, rather than stick strictly to the music.

The leader 'John' (actually Mike, I seem to recall), quipped Lennon-like throughout, while 'Paul' pulled funny faces (as is still his want) from time to time. 'George' was fairly low key, only 'Ringo', poorly illuminated and stuck behind his drums at the back, seemed unwilling or unable to play to character, although he did perform a few of 'Ringo's songs.

Initially, personally, I found this a little irritating, but after a while I accepted that it was part of the performance and it seemed less jarring as the evening wore on. Now and then, too, they'd drop out of character, which was funny and made it clear they weren't taking it all too seriously.

What helped, of course, was that when playing they were really good.

Both instrumentally and vocally, they produced a sound that was close enough to the original songs to be both enjoyable and memory-evoking.

Although I wasn't born until 1962, when The Beatles started to enjoy mass success, I'd been a big fan in the mid-1970s, before Punk and New Wave came along and stole my attention.

I'd never lost my liking for The Beatles, though, and still have a pretty big collection of their albums (on CD and Vinyl) which still get an airing from time to time, so I was familiar with all the songs they played and, while I wouldn't say they all sounded exactly like the recordings, they certainly sounded close enough for you to think this might have been how they'd have sounded live.

After a few of the rockier early period songs ("Hard Day's Night", "Help", "She Loves You","I Saw Her Standing There"and "I Want To Hold Your Hand", amongst others - I can't find a full setlist), they left for a few minutes and returned in Shea Stadium style outfits to perform later period songs, such as "Day Tripper", "Ticket To Ride" and "The Night Before".

After about an hour, there was a 30 minute interval, while the (mostly pretty old - Older than me, even! - but there were some younger people and not all appeared to be carers!) audience pottered off for a beer, wine, tea or coffee and a much-needed comfort break (and by that I mean a chance to alleviate the buttocks from the solid pew seats!)

When we returned, the band appeared in "Sgt Pepper's" style costumes and started the second part with the opening two tracks from that album (The title track and "With a Little Help from My Friends"), later they came back to the album to perform "When I'm 64".

I'm a little hazy on the exact order, as they didn't play in strict chronological order, but we also had "Taxman", "All You Need is Love" and "Hello, Goodbye" around this point.

The guy performing as 'George' was excellent - They performed "While My Guitar Gently Weeps" and "Something" (as well as "Taxman") and his guitar work sounded impressive.

Around this point, the band split up, 'George' doing "Something" while the others changed and then he nipped off to return with a remarkably quickly grown (And very fake looking!) beard, to return in Apple Roof Top era outfits.

'Paul' gave us "Blackbird" and then, when the band were all back we got a selection of later songs, including "Get Back" (I couldn't help hearing The Rutles' "Get Up and Go" - RIP Neil Innes), the rather unexpected, but welcome "Ballad of John and Yoko" and the very unexpected, but a personal favourite of mine, "One after 909".

There was no encore, but they just kept asking if we wanted 'One more song'? And of course, the answer was yes. We got "Twist and Shout" and "Hey Jude" and in the end, it was only the 11PM curfew that stopped the fun.

If you like the Beatles music and live performance, I can't think of any reason why you wouldn't enjoy an evening with The Vox Beatles.

I certainly did!

Friday, 6 December 2019

Skinny Lister - West End Centre, Aldershot - 5th December, 2019

Sometimes something really surprises you and this was one of those times.

Looking for a bit of live music before the end of the year, I idly explored the West End Centre's website and discovered a band called "Skinny Lister" was playing on the 5th December.

I'd never heard of them, but a quick Google suggested they were a "Punk-Folk Band", not a concept I'd ever encountered, so a bit of YouTube viewing ensued and they seemed a bit like the Pogues or Dexy's Midnight Runners, but with more teeth and less mannered performances (choose which one I mean from that), so I decided they'd be a bit of fun for a cold December evening. What did I have to lose?

I turned up expecting them to be on at 8, even telling my wife I would probably be home by 10PM! However, there was a support act, Jack Humphries, who was a decent performer with a foot-operated drum, a guitar and a harmonica. He did a few of his own songs, including one about getting off with an ex while he was high, and a decent cover of 'Dancing In The Dark', by Bruce Springsteen.

As support acts go, he was pretty decent, I'd not have minded seeing him on his own, to be honest.

After that we had about 40 minutes break until Skinny Lister arrived on stage.

And did they arrive!

None of this shuffling on, waving to the crowd, tweaking their instruments, the 5 men and 1, heavily pregnant, woman, hit the stage and BANG! Straight into their first song.

Two things were immediately clear. First, this was a band who were going to have a good time and they'd make bloody sure you did, too.

Secondly, there was a hard core of fans who clearly knew every song that they played.

So, what does Punk-Folk sound like? At one point, I thought it was a bit like a cross between The Pogues and Stiff Little Fingers - The playing was frenetic and fast and full of brash self-confidence, but there was a definite Folk-y twang to everything.

Frankly, it was brilliant.

The woman explained she was taking it easy as she had a 'little Lister on board' and actually disappeared from the stage a number of times for a few songs, but was back energetically joining in or singing lead for a while.

For around 90 minutes we rattled, exhaustingly, through songs I'd never heard before or very vaguely recognized from my YouTube browsing (Trouble on Oxford St, for example), but which others around me clearly held dear and sang along with every word.

A flagon of something was passed from the stage around the crowd (look up their videos on YouTube and you'll see it's a 'thing' for them), but as I was driving and had already had a pint, I passed, so I can't tell you what it was.

One song recounted the tribulations of putting unleaded in a Diesel Vehicle, another more folk song tune recounted the longing to be Rollin' Over valleys and hills to come home from a distant war. Some sounded like traditional folk songs or shanties (Bonny Away and Raise a Wreck, for example), while others were more Punk or Indie in style (Thing Like That and This is War, for example) and clearly self-penned. The vast majority were energetic and fast, with one or two exceptions.

Aside from a handful of people who clearly have fun in a very different way to me (Despite them not moving at all that I noticed, I assume they had fun as they stayed to the end!) everyone was bouncing and singing along, even if it was only to the catchy, easy to learn choruses, some without words at all!

Honestly, I reckon this was one of the best live performances I've seen - The energy and enthusiasm from the band was both impressive and infectious and I can see why some people were following them around.

At one point the lead singer mentioned they'd just done a tour in the US and Canada, which suggests they must have a reasonable following, but I'd never heard of them before!

After they finished their main set, they came back for a three-song encore, which kept the buzz going for a little longer and the lead guitarist came down and played in the crowd!


Photo from Skinny Lister's Facebook Page

Would I go and see them again? You bet and I suggest you do, too - As soon as you can!

Setlist:

38 Minutes
My Distraction
Tragedy in A Minor
Devil in Me
Artist Arsonist
My Life, My Architecture
Diesel Vehicle
Rattle and roll
Rollin' Over
Wanted
What Can I Say
George's Glass
Any Resemblance to Actual Persons...
Geordie Lad
Cathy
Bold as Brass
John Kanaka
Thing Like That
Bonny Away
This is War
Trouble on Oxford Street

Encore:
Raise a Wreck
Hamburg Drunk
Six Whiskies