Sunday, 1 February 2009

The Devotees. Teaspoonriverneck, No Ambition and About An Hour – Fermain Tavern – 30/01/09

The Fermain Tavern tonight welcomed a charity gig mixing musical styles from the rock covers more usually seen at The Doghouse to with The Devotees to the doom rock ‘n’ roll of Teaspoonriverneck.

First up though was About An Hour who tonight featured new bass player Martyn Brown for the first time.

With some new songs in their set the band still musically very good, however tonight they seemed, at times, to lack something of the charisma I know they are capable of.

This though may have had something to do with the audience who, for most of the night, remained distant thanks to the arrangement of seating on the Fermain’s dance floor.

By the end of the set though About An Hour seemed to be hitting their stride with Danny particularly beginning to joke with the audience between songs. I got the impression tonight that with more regular shows under their belt this band may be able to catch the spirit and popularity of past endeavours, which would be a great thing to see.

Second on stage was another group of four young men, No Ambition. Until about a month ago No Ambition were three piece brit-rock covers band Stratosfear, and while their name change, and decision to ditch all the covers, has been somewhat controversial, this didn’t seem to stop them playing a great set.

With a much punkier sound in many places than Stratosfear the band do seem to be developing their own musical identity and the addition of a second guitarist has definitely added the ability for the band to find more texture in their music and seems to have allowed Tyler Edmomds more room to play the front man role.

The set’s highlights remained the older originals such as ‘Wasted Weekend’ and ‘I’ve Got Nothing, And You’ve Got It All’, but the newer material promised No Ambition could become a popular fixture in local music.

The night’s third band were most definitely my highlight of the night.

Teaspoonriverneck hit the stage heavier than a really heavy thing (I’m sure I’ve used that cliché before) and their mix of rock ‘n’ roll, doom and stoner metal once again hit all the right marks.

While not all present seemed to completely appreciate the night’s heaviest band this was still an excellent outing from them.

The most notable thing about tonight’s set though was how free the band seemed on stage, something that seems to have appeared since Teaspoonriverneck lost their ‘uniform’ last summer and is definitely a step in the right direction in my opinion.

Finally on stage came the pop rock covers of The Devotees. Doing what they do very well the dance floor was soon busy with people moving to the sounds of bands like The Small Faces and The Who.

With a good choice of very familiar classics, a few modern numbers and a few lesser known classics The Devotees make a great sound and clearly have fun on stage both playing and talking to the crowd.

The real highlights of the set came at the end with a sing a long run through of The Jam’s ‘Town Called Malice’ and Cheap Trick’s ‘I Want You To Want Me’ which both kept the crowd dancing until the evening closed with a run through ‘Rod the Mod’s ‘Maggie May’ which closed a great night of music.

Despite the great tunes I was left thinking that it would be nice to see the Tavern this busy on a more regular basis for more live music events.

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