Sunday, October 25, 2009

Smugglers Records do

Saturday 24th October, The Farmhouse, Canterbury

This was a release party for the new Ukelele Gangstas EP. I didn't stick around to see their set - too tired after a trip up to London and back that day.

Cocos Lovers (who started Smugglers Records) played a set as a seven-piece - Pog back in the line-up, but playing fiddle rather than accordion this time. There was a new song Will's written about his (deceased) father, as well as a lot of old favourites. They've got so much excellent material now that I can think of half-a-dozen classic songs that didn't get played. Unfortunately the sound was pretty harsh - Dave's guitar, in particular, lost all its characteristic sweetness, and Pog gave up on the fiddle after a few songs, resorting to vocals and percussion. Still, the crowd (as always) loved it all. And the band kept smiling (they always do).

I've been rather spoiled by seeing this band so many times - the gigs in Eastry and Hastingleigh earlier this year stand out (mainly because they weren't competing with noisy crowds in echoey spaces). Their album should be out by the end of the year, with "Dead in the Water" preceding it as a single/EP.

Preceding them we got "Ukelizzy" (I think) - a girl with a ukelele singing quirky songs (presumably an associate of the Gangstas) - and Tom Farrer, a formidable young singer-songwriter from Deal backed up by James (ex-Cocos) and Dave, plus a pleasingly unbridled bass player called Jamil and a backing singer called Gabriella. The mix was too rough to hear a lot of the lyrics, but you could just tell that he's got something to say. Someone must have been filming, 'cos there's a clip here.


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