Went on an end of term jolly with Martin, last night, to a less-than full Slak Bar. I was kind of surprised that the turn out wasn’t better and I could tell that Emma and Edd were disappointed and more than a little puzzled as well; some of the other Calmer events have been pretty well attended.
Two bands were on show, Misterlee and Flipron, both of whom were unknown to me and, to be honest, I wasn’t expecting too much from them, as their Myspace pages didn’t really do it for me. I don’t know what it is, though, but seeing a band doing their thing live still fills me with an almost childish pleasure. Both bands were great fun to watch.
Misterlee are what you’d call an experimental two (sometimes three) piece, made up of a guitarist and another feller who sang and shouted furiously into a collection of mikes, whilst coaxing all sorts of dub-ish sounds from what looked like a very old amp with a bewildering amount of knobs and dials. With his third hand he played a single drum. Like I say, it was ... (how can I put it?) ... a challenging listen, not exactly foot-tapping stuff, but top quality entertainment nonetheless. I really enjoyed it. Misterlee have a website and a Myspace page too with a number of downloadable selections there, which I won’t post (you’d think I was taking the piss) but take it from me, they’re worth seeing live.
Second up was Flipron who were also great fun to watch and actually a fair bit more listenable. Backed by drums, bass and organ, singer Jesse played a number of very English-sounding pop songs (in a Ray Davies / Steve Marriott sort of way) which seemed to be mainly about skeletons and old people, with a manic country cum Hawaian feel to them. He also worked his way through a selection of guitars, a lap steel, an accordion, a harmonica and even a mandolin during the course of the evening. Being a non-musician, I love this sort of thing and still find myself inordinately impressed with this easy familiarity with different instruments. It all made for an entertaining and humorous set, which although full of vaguely gothic songs never got too po-faced.
There are a number of downloads available on their website, as well as on their Myspace page, so here’s a couple which are pretty good. You can also buy their album on Emusic, (which I have now done) but I have to say that live Flipron were better than the record. See them if you get the chance.
Skeletons On Holiday
Raindrops Keep Falling on the Dead