Monday, 30 July 2007

Kazoo Funk Orchestra, The HooKares @ 13th Note, 29th July

Kazoo Funk Orchestra have been on my musical radar for a wee while now, but I honestly have no idea how or why. I thought it must've been one of those spam-a-lot MySpace friend requests, but since they're not my friends (not yet anyway) this seems unlikely. Hmm. Regardless of how I know of them, I do, and have been looking forward to this gig for quite some time as I knew it would be something out of the ordinary.

I was not to be disappointed! Unless you count the crushing dreariness of the first band, that is...they were truly as bad as the name suggests, if indeed you can imagine a band being that bad. Initial signs were quite promising, they came on after side one of Clear Spot by Cap-B and the presence of an electric violin promised at least a smidgin of experimentation to their sound. Alas, this was not to be. Wah-wah violin solo aside, I lost some skin cells watching this band that I'm never going to get back again, and this angers me. So much for Oil of Olay, it cannot reverse the aging caused by having to listen to bad music for half an hour.

The tiny downstairs bar got rather full and extremely hot in time for the arrival of KFO, and thankfully these guys saved the day with their engaging mix of danceable tunes, lyrical smut and stage buffoonery. First song of the night was about muff diving, but as the cute little hairy frontman jumped about waving his arms and brandishing a stethoscope, even Mary Whitehouse would have forgotten any offense caused to get down and dirty down the front. The band had at least 8 and possibly as many as 11 members, some of which (but not all) played the eponymous kazoo. This was less of a gimmick than a neccessity though, as the playful and energetic nature of these tunes was best expressed via a small plastic toy which requires no musical expertise to play.

As the tunes carried on (they played for almost an hour!) it became apparent that this was a partisan crowd; in fact, the only criticism I would have of the night was that the 5 of us felt like we'd gatecrashed a private party as we seemed to be the only people there not personally acquainted with the band. About halfway through 4 bin bags full of balloons were unleashed upon the sweaty throng, providing a floaty compliment to the penis-shaped balloons tethered to the microphone stands from the beginning. The atmosphere was pretty amazing, don't think I've ever seen so many happy smiling people in this venue before with people ignoring the perils of the 6ft high ceiling to mosh away with gay abandon.

The band's sound could be best described as a poppier, happier Beta Band, ut why rely on me when you can download 38 of their tunes from their website? Better still, why not buy an album - I got both of them for a fiver, the best deal since Chris Langham sold me a cheap computer 4 months ago...some folk will never learn.

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