New Beginnings for an Old Story.
Before Kennyfest, it had been nearly two years since I last stood on a stage and did what I enjoy best. Would I still be able to do it? Was I still as good as I was? Was I even that good in the first place? The anticipation was… well…
I’d love to say the anticipation was palpable, but I was never exactly famous to begin with, so the World continued turning merrily on its axis without anybody noticing I even stopped in the first place!
Finally though, a new band and a new sound would bring me back into the live arena (well, arena might be a stretch but the live… er… place). The irony was this ‘new’ band was really a reuniting of the band that nearly was. The same members as before, just much better now.
We debuted at Kennyfest a month after getting together and sculpting a set of eight songs. It was a great day. You’d think having that many local bands under one roof would be a recipe for prima donna behaviour. You’d be wrong. Relaxing backstage and checking out the countless talent throughout the day was a constant pleasure, and the atmosphere was constantly a sense of unity .
The biggest pleasure though, was playing again. Turns out I wasn’t feeling rusty at all. We write songs about pretty serious topics. We never really were into the rock and roll cliché topically, so always wrote about what mattered to us, and what was real. With songs about the tragedy of young teenage soldiers killed in WWI, the struggles of domestic violence, unfulfilled lives and our hatred towards a local paedophile, it would be easy for an audience to feel crushed by the weight of the subject matter.
That’s why we intersperse the dark side with black humour, and take the piss out of the Geordie Shore/TOWIE culture that has developed or the salacious goings on beneath the veiled curtain of middle class, new build suburbia. That, and we don’t take ourselves too seriously on stage. Who wants to watch some poe faced wanker inflate himself with the pretence of being cool? It’s far more fun to watch a tongue in cheek, good time performance that connects band with audience.
It’s a good job we have that view mind. If you were an uptight band member, you’d have had your feathers well and truly ruffled at our second gig at the Blyth and Tyne! Lady luck slapped us with a wet fish that night…
James clocked me with his bass and stepped onto my pedal (which sounds minor, but when you’re in the middle of a ballad and your effects get switched for speed metal it can raise/remove a few eyebrows). Rory’s mic was too high to sing, so I had a repeat of the old days where he sings backing loudly, but in my ear and to the back of my head. It’s like having a slightly delayed double track that only the singer can hear. Snapping a string on his guitar and having to run through the audience to get another and retune topped off the night for the four stooges of metal!
That said, it made for a chaotically enjoyable time. I think without the comedy or fuck ups, we’d have to put up a ‘if any of the issues raised tonight offended or upset you, call…’ disclaimer, so it’s probably for the best.
From the R:Ev, with love.