Sunday, 29 April 2007

Ally Kerr, Chris Leonard, Tom Snowball, Francis MacDonald - Cottiers

I miss the smell of smoke. Pubs, beer and smoke, it reminds me of being young.

I'm an hour late and nothing's started yet. Miles Davis jazz playing and the place is bustling more than last week, no comfortable standing room. I might be relegated to standing awkwardly close to a middle-aged couple, having a quiet Sunday evening drink.

Gah, even worse, its two middle aged couple. I am become Elexender Brown.

Time passes.

Near the front Ally Kerr and Chris Leonard look poised to pick up their guitars. Other awkward standing folk at the back, less awkward, but in couples, no one as alone as I.

A dreamy set, stalked by the spectre of mic feedback and almost drowned out by apathetic audience conversations. It sounded like a hand reaching out in the dark.

I wish I could bring a girl to shows like this, we'd drink wine and talk over the music.

Tom Snowball, his greatest song is "Credit Debonairs", the line about "Computers count our friends", his songs have the greatest lyrics. He wins over the crowd, but its a hard fought battle withquite a few casualties, but they stop talking when he sings.

He manages to plug the Littlest Album, without ever saying its name, which considering the past few days is somewhat a relief.

I've heard some of the songs before, recorded them even, but tonight he seems to slow everything down, mid-song, drawing out choruses, leaving people craning on the edges of their seats expectantly. Seemed a more forthright performance than last night.

He looks quite young does Francis MacDonald, considering Teeneage Fanclub and BMX Bandits legacy. Oop, vocals are a touch too loud to start off with, they're making the bench I'm sitting on resonate up my arse.

I'm a bit underwelmed to be honest, there's something missing, like the script says winsom, but the heart beats for something else.

Frequent words forgetting isn't helping to win me over.

Four or five songs in, and he's more comfortable in his skin, like he, his guitar, the words and the audience are on the same level. The singing becomes a closer match to way back when.

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