This isn’t going to be an especially long or particularly serious review, as to be honest I’ve already done 3 of those this week, this show was spent mostly in the company of friends I don’t get to see anywhere near as much as I’d like to, I was feeling a bit ropey and I fancied a bit of a goof-off. The teenytiny photos that accompany this are more for comedy purposes than anything else, although I suspect that they are a marked improvement over the swirly efforts from earlier on.
So this one was spent at the back of the room, enjoying good company and generally being jostled by a local crowd who simply couldn’t keep from constantly strolling about.
Apologies to opener Duke Garwood as I missed his set due to general social butterfly duties. Hope he went down well.
Creature With The Atom Brain’s set was as loud, spacey and downright fun as ever, their brand of hypnotically-rhythmed psych rock once more going down well with the crowd. I hope that they can get back over here soon, as headliners. Their set was identical to the previous three shows I’d seen, still tremendous fun to see a support act start with a song as huge as they do, and not one that I can tell is from any of their recorded output to date. They all seem to be enjoying themselves as much as we’re enjoying watching them play, so everyone’s happy there.
Maybe it was because I was less concerned with detail and more with just hanging out, but this Mark Lanegan Band performance was the most assuredly relaxed that I’d seen them. Everyone was on top form and were settled early on into a set that played to everyone’s strengths and coalescing them into a formidable unit. This made for a first half of proceedings somewhat laid-back, which made the triumvirate of Gray Goes Black, the Screaming Trees’ Crawlspace and a roof-raising Quiver Syndrome even stronger for the sudden gear change. That they could then change suddenly back down for a beautiful reading of One Hundred Days shows both not only the obvious strength of material at Mark Lanegan’s command, but also his confidence in his band to adapt all these mood changes into a cohesive and enjoyable whole. It’s quite easy for me to pick favourites this time: the aforementioned Quiver Syndrome just for the fact that it was several notches louder than everything else; and the epic set-closer Tiny Grain Of Truth, a wonderfully drawn-out flourish.
So that’s me done with these shows. All four that I have been to have been thrilling, funny and heartening in varying amounts and at different times. I’ve met wonderful old friends (one for the very first time after a decade) and made some brilliant new ones. And nobody minded when I was running round the gig in Birmingham with my phone going “I’m in the ruddy Guardian!” to anyone who was interested (check out this week’s Blog Jam in the Music Blog section of the Guardian’s website, and you’ll find 6dft there, complete with suitably sensible Q&A). Right, this is the shakiest train I’ve ever been on, more coffee’s on the way, all that remains are the tiny pictures and setlist:
The Gravedigger’s Song
Sleep With Me
Hit The City
One Way Street
Wish You Well
Gray Goes Black
One Hundred Days
Creeping Coastline Of Lights
Riot In My House
Ode To Sad Disco
St. Louis Elegy
Tiny Grain Of Truth
When Your Number Isn’t Up
Well, they made me laugh anyway.