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Blog: Standard Fare

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Last night I headed out to scenic Islington after work, which seems to be the MAIN area I'm going to gigs at the moment. I decided to WALK to The Old Red Lion, where I was meeting Mr J Kell and Mr S Hewitt, as part of the traditional Back To Work Fitness Freakout, but hadn't realised QUITE how out of practice I was with that sort of thing, and it took me a good few minutes to get my breath back and a while long to RECOVER sufficiently to get to the business at hand.

The business was, however, dealt with SUAVELY - planning for next year's show, ideas for the Dinosaur Planet SCREENPLAY, and THORTS on the future were all dealt with succesfully before we headed round the corner to Indian Veg, there to eat A BIT TOO MUCH. YOINKS! It was DELICIOUS, but many of our number spent the rest of the evening feeling a bit like WEEBLES.

Thus we WOBBLED round the corner to The Lexington and were soon upstairs looking at Evans The Death. Lots of people have been banging on about these lately, and once we'd got over our Old Person Apprehensions (SKINNY JEANS!) they were dead good. There was something BAND-ISH about them, everyone LOOKED like they should be in a band but not like they'd all dressed up in Band Clothes or indeed to be in THIS band, but everything sounds GRATE (the sound at the Lexington is AMAZING) and all the songs had EXCITING BITS in them. I have a feeling if I saw them again I'd suddenly KNOW half the songs and, actually, seeing them again would be something i would LIKE.

After a bit of the old chat we regrouped for the next act, and the reason that I'd GONE, the amazing and brilliant Standard Fare. I've seen them several times now and they've never been less than excellent, but CRIKEY! This time they were INCREDIBLE! Especially when they got into their stride a few songs in, they ROCKED like NOBODY'S BUSINESS. The best thing is to WATCH them, as they (especially The Guitarist) always seem ASTONISHED that they have such AMAZING songs. The dynamic (hem hem) of the group is ACE too - he really is BRILLIANt at playing the guitar, but in a way that makes for RIFFS and TUNES rather than showing off, while the VOCALS are UNIQUE (NB by which I mean BRILLIANT and different from anyone else) and full of feeling and even MORE tunes. As for the DRUMS... even THOSE have tunes in, and BY HECK he is good at playing them.

So yes, and actually BRILLIANT (i know i am using this word a lot, but it APPLIES) band playing BRILLIANT songs (and CRUMBS they have a lot of them), what more could one want? I did rather wonder this while I was watching them, as much of the audience stood looking quite CALM throughout, and when they did "Philadelphia" NOBODY started leaping around like a KRAZY PERSON. Eh? What's going on? They'd start songs - and another ACE thing about them is all their songs are instantly recognisable from the introductions, THAT'S how BRILLIANT they are! - and there was a distinct lack of "WHOO!" and "HECK YES!" in the room. It felt WEIRD and WRONG - surely, SURELY this lot are destined for massive crowds of screaming insanity? In fact, SURELY that should already be happening?

Best of ALL though was a new song, "Suitcase", which was SO BRILLIANT I actually found myself LARFING with GLEE at how ludicrous it felt to be seeing and hearing it. I reckon they KNOW how GRATE it is, they certainly looked like they were happy to be playing it, and again I was confused by the fact that there were people in the room NOT rending their hair at the insanity of it all, nor making feverish notes to ensure they remembered where they were the first time they heard it.

So yes, all in all, I thought it was rather good. I couldn't stick around for the end of the evening, but left with a HUGE GRIN plastered all over my silly face. It was a frankly ATSONISHING first gig of the year, but let's hope ALL gigs aren't this good, I don't think my face muscles could take it!

posted 5/1/2011 by MJ Hibbett

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