Friday, September 29, 2006
A welcome return to the Prom last week, and not only because it's within a short stagger of my place; we always look forward to this one as it's a real old musos' pub - audiences tend to be older, soberer and generally pay us a bit more attention than we often get. Not necessarily a good thing, but luckily the sound is always top notch there, and when we can hear what we're doing, it sounds better out front too.
Robin pointed out that most of our songs are about being 'broke and grumpy', and a quick mental review of the lyrics would seem to confirm this - perhaps we need to cheer Chris up a bit next time he writes a song - here he is relaxing with a lovely fag while he listens to his 'Positive Thinking - a Whole New You!' self-hypnosis tape again...
Sunday, September 17, 2006
Yes, the very same pub in which King Arthur burned the cakes he was baking for Joseph of Arimathea. Or something.
...well, this pub was a new one on me, and They said that space was at a premium; suffice to say, if we'd been any closer together last night we would now all be legally betrothed in at least 47 states, and up on charges in four of them.
Despite spatial limitations so severe that Nick had to remove his hi-hat just to reach the bar (yup, every bit as painful as it sounds), we managed to get through the whole first set without serious injury.
The second set saw the appearance of the Pub Nutter.
Now, this particular beast appears in Many Forms, and moves in Mysterious Ways, but some things are always predictable:
He (and it always is a He) works alone - I wonder why?
He sports an unusual haircut (in this instance no hair at all)
He dances like a Kangaroo on Acid.
He will not go away. Ever.This one, bless him, had a twist! Just when you thought you had the Measure of the Man, he vanishes into the car park & reappears with a length of UPVC drainpipe, incorporating several elbow joints. With these unlikely Dark Materials he manages to fashion a range of obscenely contorted shapes, several of which slide dangerously into regions of non-Euclidean Geometry hitherto merely hinted at in the Forbidden Necronomicon of the Mad Arab, Abdul Alhazred...
Several punters disappeared into realms of unnameable nightmare without even waiting for last orders, but the survivors that retained their sanity pronounced it "a bloody good night out", and who are we to argue?
Monday, September 11, 2006
The Fishes in Highworth was a return visit - last time the place was pretty much dead, although the landlord apparently heard glowing reports. Things didn't look promising as we set up; no-one in the place apart from a dodgy drunk of the type that veers unpredictably between maudlin self-pity & extreme violence...
"'Ere, Lemmy!" he'd occasionally slur, one eye pointing vaguely in my direction. "Lemmy, yeah..?"
How precisely am I supposed to respond to that? Do I point out that I am not in fact Lemmy, and risk him flying into an uncontrollable rage? Or should I gargle with gravel and start wearing a cowboy hat? In the event I settled for pointedly ignoring him, whilst radiating quiet menace (which probably came across more as mild annoyance).
Thankfully our soundcheck proved too much for the cretin, and he staggered off into the night.
Things started fairly quietly, but were soon livened up by a large contingent of US servicemen from the local airbase, evidently intent on having a good time by means of splashing a lot of beer about & dancing with any women who came within range - much whoopin' and hollerin' ensued, and we were generally quite relieved to escape with our lives...
The Stroud Fringe was a new one for us, and turned out to be a nice little do in the Cornhill market in the middle of Stroud - loads of punters there, though a little difficult to actually see them through the 3rd degree burn-inducing lighting rig... onstage sound was awful, with Chris unable to hear what he was singing, and no-one being able to hear the drumkit, but it must have sounded OK out front judging from the applause.
My commiserations to the hapless stagehand who offered to carry my bass rig down the steps when we finished - he missed a step & it fell on him; as anyone who's ever tried to pick up my bass rig on their own knows, this could well have been fatal. Luckily he was relatively unscathed & went off to count his blessings (and possibly his ribs).
There may, or more likely may not, be some pictures of this gig to come - Ruth tried to get a business card from the photographer, but it seems he was in a state of altered consciousness, so they might all be close-ups of Ruth's toenail anyway...