Friday, 29 January 2010

Top 5 Gigs of 2009

My lowest gig tally for some time, I think I only managed 8 or 9 all told. The quality remained high though so there were no shortage of contenders for the final five. All gigs were in that there London unless stated.

1. Dananananaykroyd (Hoxton Bar & Grill) - So, if I was being strictly accurate the 'Naykroyd would be at numbers 1 and 2. I saw them twice and they were head and shoulders above any band I've seen in the past ten years. Possibly ever. The Hoxton show edged out the Scala show by a gnat's whisker. It was the first headline show I'd seen them do and a cracking night for many other reasons. If you like your music at the spiky end of the scale do yourself a favour and see this band live.

2. Bill Callahan (Union Chapel) - First time I'd seen Bill live and first time I'd been to the Chapel. Bill was on brilliant form, playing songs mainly from his 2009 album (2nd in my albums of 2009) as well as a nice mixture of old favourites. The Union Chapel is a proper working church, which means it's first come first served for the best spot on the pews. I'm at an age where I can enjoy a venue that provides cups of tea in a proper mug and has little tubs of ice cream on sale.

3. Neko Case (Wedgewood Rooms, Portsmouth) - Likewise, this was my first live experience of Neko Case. Alternative country if you don't already know. Neko has a stunning voice which was all the more impressive in the cosy environment of the Wedgewood. It seemed a little like this was a warm up for the following nights show at the Barbican but the relaxed atmosphere only aided my enjoyment. A cracking mix of new songs from "Middle Cyclone" and the best of her back catalogue.

4. Pixies (Brixton Academy) - Playing the whole of "Doolittle" in order plus a selection of b-sides from the same era and some old classics. Fantastic show which I slightly regret being too drunk to fully appreciate. Thankfully they're selling live CD's of the tour so I still have the chance to listen to the show more attentively. Despite my state of sobriety I had a fab time and thoroughly enjoyed the night.

5. Stiff Little Fingers (The Forum) - I haven't seen the SLF for a very long time so having heard they were touring again was keen to check them out. This was the night after the eventful evening in Hoxton (see above), so I was a little jaded and not particularly expecting to enjoy it. However, Jake Burns and the boys blew me away. They played a cracking set of greatest hits that sounded as good as I have ever heard them before.

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