As promised, shows, two of. Boom boom.
A New International & Heist – live
Edinburgh, Voodoo Rooms – Friday 29th April – tickets here
Glasgow, Glad Café – Saturday 30th April – tickets here
April, to TS Eliot, was the cruellest month. April, for Edna St Vincent Millay, was not enough. I disagree. April, to me, feels like forgiveness. And that is certainly enough. More than enough actually and, if I am being honest, more than I was expecting. So, we’re throwing a party. Two actually, and with some very special guests. We’d like to invite you, weather permitting of course, to our first full band shows in three years. Much has happened in the meantime: events dear boy, events; and some events, oddly enough, of the good variety. There are new tales to tell and new songs to sing. So, if you’re free and feeling a little reckless and gay, come out to play. Let’s all have a marvellous time. Twice.
This poem is dedicated to everyone who comes to the shows; to everyone who comes and goes to all and any shows.
Ode to the Audience
(in the time of the great pestilence)
And if we play, will you come?
Will it be like before?
Or different this time?
different, I think.
Playing a show,
like throwing a party,
is a leap of faith
Will we fly
or will we fall?
Will we fall
if we fall, let the arc be graceful,
if we crash, may it be into a million shining pieces,
if we burn then let it be brightly
and just long enough to light up a room
but what if,
you and I,
There is no before,
There is now.
After, we will see what is still standing.
I’d like to share some words I posted a while back, about our special guests and co-conspirators at these shows, Heist. I think Heist are a special band. They are a big influence on me and it will be a pleasure to share the shows with them –
“I think it was around 1998 when I first saw Heist play live. A friend encouraged me to go to a three band bill at King Tut’s. I don’t remember any of the other bands that night. I wasn’t expecting much and for some reason the name Heist made me think they would be some kind of Fun Lovin’ Criminals macho posturing nonsense. I was very much mistaken. When they walked onstage my first thought was that they didn’t look like a band, at least not the kind of bands I was used to seeing. They were well dressed, elegant, as though they were on their way to a dinner party. Perhaps they were. I still remember the opening line to their first song-“I have a plan” The audience were immediately being made complicit, fellow conspirators, accessories after the fact. From here on in, to stay silent, to do nothing, would be the sin of omission. They didn’t sound like a band either. More than expected, more than perhaps I was accustomed to believing I deserved, the sound was of a wide-screen, orchestral pop-noir via John Barry, Ennio Morricone, spy novels, classic TV theme tunes such as The Persuaders, Tales of the Unexpected and Randall and Hopkirk (Deceased) also came to mind. No, they didn’t look like a band and no, they certainly didn’t sound like a band; two reasons to like them very much indeed. And yes, it sounded like they really did have a plan: a pan-continental pop vision presented to a nation of shopkeepers, melodic, elegiac songs of and for a European Britain. You might say that such a notion was always doomed to ingratitude. Some of us prefer our romanticism of the doomed variety. I daresay it makes for a neater narrative arc. But, doomed or otherwise, if there be such thing as otherwise, the main thing is to document the moment, even as it passes forever. So save whatever you can save from the fire, put the message in a bottle and trust it to the tides: the passing on; perhaps others after ourselves may run a little further.There are, to the best of my knowledge, two Heist albums available. Their debut, “Friday Night at the Trabi Races” still sounds like a manifesto to me, a declaration of intent, an urgent proof, anger with style. You can listen here-
Second album “A Shopkeeper Will Not Appear” has an after the fall quality, like the aftermath to a very British apocalypse, damp and disappointing; the forecast is for inclement weather as the band huddle beneath their umbrellas –
Growing up in bands in 90s Glasgow it often felt like indie was compulsory. Heist helped me to see that, although you will probably have to create it yourself, another world was possible and that, however unlikely and far off it seems, another world will always be possible. My thanks and best wishes to Heist.Bx “
So then, to recap – Shows, two of. Boom boom. Featuring special guests, Heist. All welcome. Bring your friends. Message ends.