Live at Joseph's Well on Friday, 16th July 2004
Nic Armstrong walks on stage as a straight-faced telecaster-wielding singer songwriter who may be at best quite entertaining or thought provoking, but probably a bit dull and to think the worst, Badly Drawn Boy-ish. He's clearly a sly bastard however because after one forgettable solo tune he brings on his 'Fabulous Bagel Boys' (erm, I think I heard that right...) and blows our socks off with a dance-along set of Get-A-Mop-Top-And-Call-Me-Ringo 60's pop numbers. It's all good fun with four very different personalities all coming across on stage at the same time and some side-profile drumming creating an unusual set to watch even if the sound is nothing ground breaking. Armstrong gives his band a fag break during another solo song, the Oasis style 'The Greatest White Liar' but the dancing resumes when the band joins back in. All-in-all a cool performance despite the fact that Armstrong's enigmatic fašade was punctured by his bassist's 'sex face' throughout. Erk.
The patron saint of Blues and Booze Mr David Viner sings for his supper like the wandering minstrel of melancholy that he is. His set is brief and dogged by an escaping microphone which keeps wilting floorwards much to Viner's annoyance. The songs are either covers (like the Jack White favoured St James Infirmary Blues) or tracks from his new album This Boy Don't Care.
The new tracks offer more of the 'get drunk and give my woman a black eye' blues which Viner does so very well, but the set is over all too soon as he and his self-declared new love - a bottle of red wine - head to the bar leaving this reviewer wanting more. I guess I'll have to go get the album then - sneaky Viner, very sneaky!