This is what makes life worth living you know. Fuck the credit crunch, global warming, work, bills, the shitty weather, war, disaster...tearing a hole in your favourite pair of jeans...nah...fuck all that...for just a few short, beautiful hours gigs like this make you forget all the crap. It began with the Black & Reds. Featuring Ash 'Black' (drummer with the frankly awesome High Society) and Greg 'Red' (who I believe plays in a band called Dizzy Lizzy) they dished out a good half dozen of the dirtiest hot rock classics I've heard in ages. Ash is possibly...no scrap that...he is the best drummer I have ever seen in 20 years of going to gigs (sorry Budgie). At one point he tucked one his drumsticks under his arm so he could smooth back his hair but still managed to make it sound like he was playing with two sticks. That's not possible. Has he sold his soul to the Devil? Is Ash the new Robert Johnson? And get this. He plays STANDING UP. Whilst singing. And still looking like the coolest fucker on the planet. Greg's the perfect partner too, teasing one perfect rock riff from his guitar after another. In fact I can't imagine a better partnership. AC/DC, Black Sabbath, Eddie Cochran, Gene Vincent, Screaming Jay Hawkins...it's all in there and it's...just...fucking...brilliant.
Next up, Mirror! Mirror! Obviously a totally different style, but still bringing that sense of energy that changes a humble gig into an event. Gang of Four meets The Foals (with a bit of PiL thrown in for good measure) they're an twitchy ball of musical magic. Dancey, funky...simply the sound of now. It seems like they're recording soon too. I'd put a fiver on them being all over what's left of the music press by this time next year.
Right. Now this is when things got a bit messy. It's not often that I 'lose' myself in the moment but, for the whole of Monotonix's 25 odd minute set I was somewhere else. Call it a higher plain. Off my face. High on life. Whatever. Not since seeing Selfish Cunt a few years back has a set been so full of 'what the fuck's going to happen next' moments. For the uninitiated amongst you, Monotonix is a garage rock band from Tel Aviv. That's Tel Aviv in Israel. I'm not too familiar with the Tel Aviv music scene but I'm guessing that Monotonix aren't your typical local band. I don't really want to describe the set. It's like describing sex. You're better off doing it, rather than reading about it. But, for the sake of getting something down for posterity, it featured beer, cider, water...whatever fluids were handy really...being sprayed all over the band...who set up in the middle of the floor...not the stage...the floor. The lead singer spent most of the set being carried around by some of the crowd (me included) whilst playing drums...which were also being carried around by other members of the crowd. I got a snog (well a kiss...or maybe he was just trying to headbutt me...not sure) off the lead singer. At one point the drummer was buried under a piece of red carpet, then brought back from the dead. And whilst all of this mayhem was going on they even managed to play music (think Gogol Bordello meets Fucked Up). Darn fine it was too. Like I say, you can't do it justice. Suffice to say it was simply one of the most spectacular gigs of all time. Anyone got any jobs going in Tel Aviv?
NB: Respect due to Wag from Beestung Lips for playing some cracking tunes in between sets and to Kamikaze's Carlo and George for having the balls to put this gig on (oh...and Greg too for the tip off).