Tracks Monkeys With Lasers

Frank Turner @ The Flowerpot – 06/05
May 8, 2009, 6:51 pm
Filed under: gigs, music | Tags: , ,

An artist that should be no stranger to followers of the blog, I got another chance to see Frank play another (free!) gig the other night at the new Kentish Town/Camden venue the Flowerpot.

Run and owned by the now deceased Nambucca, the Flowerpot opened it’s doors for the first time just under a week ago. They put on free, live music every night with just one artist playing each night and a DJ set beforehand. So having heard murmurs on the interweb and through various sources that Frank was playing on this date, I headed down bright and early to ensureĀ  I got in as the venue holds a mere 200 people.

It’s fair to say I got there a bit prematurely at 6 o’ clock but I was taking no chances! So after a few hours drinking and a long stand, the set finally started and I was in prime location of the front row, dead centre.

By the time he came on, the venue had packed out (or seemed to have done.. I couldn’t quite see from where I was) and the atmosphere was something special. As before, he came bounding onto the stage with a borrowed guitar, gave us a little welcome and then launched straight into “I Knew Prufrock Before He Got Famous” with the whole crowd singing along.

That set the night off perfectly and he played a great set featuring a couple of new songs (“Try This At Home”, which I’d heard previously, “Dan’s Song”, with Frank’s friend and fellow artist Beans On Toast playing the harmonica, and “Sunday Night”) which were both great and went down well. But he knew the score and knew that as nice as it is to get to hear new material, you can’t beat the classics.

The set consisted of a lot of tracks off both albums with a lot more off “Sleep Is For The Week” than the last time I saw him which was great. Songs off the old album included “Worse Things Happen At Sea” and “Back In The Day” which I hadn’t heard live before. Off “Love, Ire & Song” we were treated to an amazing rendition of the title track, along with “Substitute”, “Long Live The Queen” and “St Christopher Is Coming Home”.

We also got to hear possibly the shortest rendition of “Jet Lag” as Frank forgot the lyrics once he got to the third line. But no fear, after a bit of banter from the crowd, he just launched straight on with the rest of the set. The setlist was entirely done as he felt on the night so getting to hear one of my favourite songs, and one not played very often, in “Heartless Bastard Mother Fucker” was one of the highlights for me as was “Photosynthesis” which is easily one of the best songs live.

So after almost an hour and a half of jumping around and singing at the top of my voice along with the rest of the clearly excited audience, we got to the final track which, in almost obligatory fashion, was the brilliant “The Ballad Of Me And My Friends” with Frank actually singing none of the vocals. But that wasn’t the entire story as halfway into the first verse I got a little look of Frank and the next second was up on stage alongside him, and a few others who followed, and got to sing on stage with the man himself!

All in all, one of the best gigs I’ve been to seeing as it was such an intimate venue and everyone there seemed to love him as much as I do and getting to get on stage with him was simply amazing. And I even got a photo and a hug with the man himself as well!

The smile still hasn’t left my face from that night..

I Knew Prufrock Before He Got Famous – live at the Flowerpot

Worse Things Happen At Sea – live at the Flowerpot

65daysofstatic @ Dingwalls – 26/04
May 7, 2009, 1:58 pm
Filed under: gigs, music | Tags: , , , ,

Better late than never and all that..

On that Sunday, I made my first trip to the Dingwalls venue on Camden Lock to see the almight 65daysofstatic. Getting there nice and early, and with a good spot until we moved to a slightly less good spot, I managed to catch all of the support acts as well.

First up were Tubelord who I have heard a little bit off and rather enjoy. An indie/’fight pop’ band, I quite like these guys’ sound; it’s nothing amazingly original but they do it very well, producing a very good sound considering that there’s only three of them on stage and had a good amount of energy that went down well with the crowd. Thankfully, they played my favourite song of their (Night of the Pencils, as heard on my recent podcast) and I managed to nab a recording of that, even if it was missing the first few bars as I didn’t expect it so early in the set. Altogether, they played really well and really tight and were a great opener to the night.

Next up were Amusement Parks On Fire and I’m afraid to say they were pretty rubbish. For a start, I think whoever did their sound levels must have hearing difficulties as the sound levels were awful; couldn’t hear the vocals (was he actually singing??) and the guitars were so loud that any actual quality to the sound just got lost in the noise so the whole set just blended into one. Not impressed.

Finally, the main act themselves 65dos were incredible. The noise those guys made was just fantastic and they kept the crowd going the whole time playing loads of their classics and a whole host of new material as well which may just be some of their best stuff yet; loud guitars, crazy synths and epic drumming it was like an old school rave. The gig itself reached something of an interesting climax.. halfway through a new track, WK4, the lights in the venue suddenly dropped and a minute and a half drum solo kicked in building the crowd to orgasmic levels before silence kicked in. With the crowd on tenterhooks, suddenly a figure appeared on stage, asking for everyone to vacate the venue as there’d been a power failure :/

Sadly, that was it for the night but in some ways I could think of a more apt ending for such a band. So despite technical difficulties earlier in the set and managing to break the venue, it was a top top set. Look forward to their next gig down here in October!

So for you, I have a live recording of Await Rescue but also a video of the, now mildly infamous, rendition of WK4.I do have audio of that but this vid off youtube just captures the atmosphere so much better than any audio alone could.

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