Last night Dan and I wandered along to a gig he’d spotted at short notice, featuring Chris T-T and Misty’s Big Adventure. Both are to some extent cursed where I’m concerned: several times since moving to London I’ve tried to go and see Misty’s and it’s fallen through, making it now four and a half years since I saw them for the first time; and we missed most of T-T’s set supporting the Broken Family Band at Koko a month or so back due to show time confusion (to say nothing of the time I went to see him in Manchester and the whole band got stuck in a lift for an hour, leaving enough time for Chris to do about 4 songs solo).
To some extent the curse continues – but more of that later. The gig itself was utterly excellent: for starters, MJ Hibbett and Charlotte were there, which was a nice surprise. Apparently Dan and I combined own more suits than Mark does pairs of trousers. As for the music, Chris T-T combined old and new songs – I’m very much looking forward to his new record, Capital, early in 2008 – and ended with a surprisingly effective rendition of Little Donkey.
Misty’s Big Adventure were, in my humble submission, utterly brilliant. They are the closest thing we have at the moment to Madness (apart, if you want to be pernickety, from Madness, I suppose): superficially, they are undeniably both enormous fun and enormously funny, but beyond that they are strong musically, with buckets of tunes and some pointed, and at times poignant, lyrics.The manic sound is complemented by the bizarre sight of Mr Erotic Volvo, a face-painted loon dressed in a red jump-suit covered in blue hands who mimes and dances through all the songs. Yes, you did read that right. Grandmaster Gareth is an effectively urbane frontman, by way of a rather neat contrast, and with his beard in addition to trademark straggly hair, declares himself to be the most hairy he’s ever been in his life. My enjoyment was perhaps enhanced by being on the outside of a few beers by this point, but I thought they were just tremendous, and certainly one of the most joyful sets I’ve seen all year.
They were followed by a “supergroup” of the blokes from Black Box Recorder, and one each of Art Brut and David Devant And His Spirit Wife. It was a self-indulgent ramshackle mess, but was moderately enjoyable if you were willing to accept it for what it was. If it hadn’t been Christmas I probably would have been less sympathetic to it – who says I’m nothing but Bah Humbug, eh?
Eventually, and inevitably, however, the curse struck. I had availed myself of the offer Misty’s had on CDs: the new album, Grandmaster Gareth’s latest solo album, two tour CDs and a two-track Christmas CD, all for 21 quid – job’s a good ‘un! Foolishly, however, I placed the CDs in the outside pocket of my jacket: normally I’m paranoid about leaving stuff behind, but I must have been in an unusually relaxed mood for some reason, as by the time I got on to the Piccadilly Line from the Bakerloo, three of the CDs were no longer in my possession! Bah humbug!