Monday, September 20, 2010

“That means you, Holy Joe!”

Aside from all the peripheral issues surrounding our last show, it was good to be able to go out and play a set made up principally of our latest material. I was genuinely surprised and extraordinarily pleased at the number of people who made a point of saying afterward how much they had enjoyed the new songs, especially as a couple of them are in a subtle and understated fashion quite political, in a small ‘p’ politics kind of way (and one apparently goes into 12/8 during the end section, which came as a surprise to me, I can tell you). I don’t necessarily think there’s anything wrong in writing a song for your children if you measure the tone right, and “Believe Me” is certainly one of the more faith-enhancing songs I’ve ever heard regarding parental hopes for the future, while anyone who’s ever put their kids to bed will recognize the sentiment implied in “Where We Are” (beautifully and subtly enhanced by Turny Winn’s faux naïf squeezebox accompaniment). It was also good to be able to spray a bit of vitriol around the room during “My Boy” – (“Magna Carta’s authors spin, and wonder what they bothered for...” may well be one of my favourite lines so far) before pulling back the covers, leaping out of bed, throwing open the windows and shouting a metaphorical “Wake up, you sleepyheads!” with the climactic “Land of Make Believe” which, as Robert Plant once notably announced on stage regarding one of his own compositions, is “…a song of hope”. For instance I imagine that Our Glorious Leader, for one, in future really hopes that he doesn't break any more strings during his favourite bit at the end, which led him to hiss "You'll have to play the chords!!" at me just as I was mentally leading up to my exquisitely subtle volume control violin-effect coda and wondering why on earth he was telling me to play the chorus. "The chorus?" I gurned back at him. "The chords! The chords!!" he shouted back, nodding his head toward where the first of four strings to go was hanging forlornly from his guitar's bridge at one end and tuning peg at the other. "Ah!" I nodded back and tried to remember which pedals I had to turn off to return myself to the jangle setting. As I did I caught sight of the area just in front of the stage, where an acoustic guitar nestled in the dewy grass. "That's funny..." I thought "I'm sure James was wearing that guitar earlier...". As we came off stage I noticed through the entrance to the marquee that it had started raining quite heavily and noted this to bass player Gibbon. “Hmmm…” he chuckled “…and I’ll bet you thought that noise was applause, didn’t you?”

1 comment:

Keith Farnish said...

He did mention a while ago the neck was bending - art imitates life, I guess.