Louise McVey & Cracks in the Concrete/Honey/Betatone Distractions/Tragic City Thieves - 13th Note (7/8/10)
It's an eclectic offer from Seditionaries Promotions tonight. Four bands that don't appear to have a common thread to connect them at all.
It's maybe not some peoples bag, but it's never been an issue for me because as they say variety is of course the spice of life.
Unfortunately for the promoter proceedings aren't running too smoothly though.
The sound guy has been allegedly drinking all afternoon and as he became more belligerent they had to eject him from the venue.
Escorted clean through the bar shouting obscenities and thrown out the door by all accounts.
Another guy is drafted in at short notice, but no one is getting a sound check and the bands aren't even sure what the running order is until the last kick.
I'm not sure what else is going on behind the scenes, but the impression I'm getting is that everything is a little haphazard.
A promoters nightmare.
The band that I was here to see, Tragic City Thieves, appear to have drawn the short straw and are saddled with the opening slot.
A position on the bill that they ill deserve considering how many people that they have attracted to the show.
Regardless of this they're professional enough to leave the egos at the door and once again roar into battle.
To say it is just more of the same debauched rock and roll doesn't really do them any sort of justice.
I'm at the stage that I have seen them so often that I'm running out of hyperbolic phrases to best describe them, but that's a failing on my part as this band are still firing on all cylinders and familiarity is definitely not breeding contempt.
I've yet to see anyone else on the west coast that can match them to be honest.
There are a few bands that are snapping at their heels, but these guys aren't slowing down to let anyone draw level.
It's becoming obvious that the passion that they are putting into their gigs is starting to bear fruit, when I have a quick scan about the crowd familiar faces are starting to appear.
Random returns who have no personal connection with the guys in the band. A groundswell of real fans who are enthusiastically showing their appreciation.
Once the set is finished there are a few people approaching them to get photographs taken and such, and this in itself is an indication that bigger and better things may just be around the corner for them.
Unfortunately looking back in hindsight the promoter may think that using them as the opening act might just have been a mistake, because as Betatone Distractions take to the small stage with their array of equipment the majority of the crowd who were there to see the Thieves have relocated to the upstairs bar.
It's a shame as they are damn good.
A bit of Placebo on the vocals, Some exploration of the Pixies aural landscape in the music and it all works.
The amount of effects pedals and other electronic things with knobs and levers is a bit off putting though, as is the continuous fiddling with them between songs.
It gets in the way of the flow of the set, and while it's admirable that they can replicate a studio sound so well in a live environment it does detract from the visual element of live music.
It's something that they will have to consider if they want to move forward.
Possibly strip some of it back a bit.
The material also lends itself to a bigger venue. A small club is limiting and can't really hold it all in.
Within a larger venue the material would soar unhindered and take on a whole new and more grandiose persona that could sound pretty ******' fantastic.
A band that I'll keep an eye on.
Strangely to me a band playing their début gig was next. What happened to paying your dues?
How they could secure the slot below the headliners is beyond me, but there they are.
The guitarist was the only thing that separated them from being a Stone Roses tribute band who are concentrating on the rockier material of the second album.
With a bland name like Honey it is easy to forget and I'd suggest that people do just that.
The police could have set up a cordon and told people to move along as there was nothing interesting to see and no one would complain.
So that left Louise McVey & Cracks in the Concrete to close the evening.
There seems to be loads of them and they're not sure if they are the Velvet Underground or Arcade Fire. They're neither. On paper the concept looks good and the studio tracks that I quickly listened to earlier in the evening sound fine, but live it's a bit of a blandfest.
It's a bit of a topsy turvy evening. They could have flipped the running order around and it would have made more sense, but as it is I seen one great band, one good band and two who struggle to get off the starting blocks.