This is the one I had been both looking forward too and dreading in equal measure. Well, not dreading but I sometimes get embarrassed when I book bands of this calibre and the only place I can get them a gig is in The Locomotive. Now don’t get me wrong, there is nothing wrong with the room at all, especially now that the extras from Jeremy Kyle have been culled to a certain degree, but these are bands who should be playing in decent venues to hundreds of people not bottom end of town pubs to drunken idiots who only came down to watch the football on the telly.
Still, as my motto goes, you work with what you have got (although I still think we should have a crest above the door of a spilt pint and a latin inscription reading “I Guess We Are Not In Old Town Any More.”) Originally the support were going to be the excellent Echo Boom Generation who played for us at The Victoria a few months back and who partied for England during the support acts and then rocked like there was no tomorrow during their own set, but it was not to be. Linda and Emma the guitar and bass front end of the band also play in Kate Nash’s band and when they get the call to play American gig’s, with an international name for real money, understandably everything else goes out of the window. Rob at Electric Harmony, their agent, offered Lionface as an alternate support and so here we were.
It always strikes me about the image people have of rock musicians that somehow they are these swaggering, arrogant prima donnas when nothing could be further from the truth. If those existed it was when money was no object in the Seventies, in cliched films or in local bands who are wondering why they can’t break out of the local scene , not realising that promoters don’t want to spend 6 hours hanging around with a bunch of dicks. The reality is that bands such as Lionface and The Manic Shine have managed to move up though the ranks and get on the national circuit by not only being great musicians and performers, but by being easy people to work with on a technical level and decent people to hang out with on a personal one.