Monday, 17 August 2009

The Past Two Weeks. Sort Of.

Now that Time has so unceremoniously dumped me, I've taken on a new mistress. Her name is Procrastination. She's nice and all, but, to be honest, she doesn't really do much. "Let's go out and have some fun," I'll say to her on a cold, wet summer evening. "Sure," she'll happily reply. "Just give me ten more minutes on StumbleUpon." An hour later, she's on her twenty-fifth archive page of lolcats and we're no nearer to the door. I think I'll get rid of her. Just give me one more game of Pro Evo first.

In the meantime, I'll tell you about the recent events at PAS. We had three artists last time: Brad Treeby, Miranda Barber and John Paul Palombo. It was a night of slightly unusual music. Brad's almost scat-like semi-raps over expertly played rock-funk riffs showed him to be a musician with some unconventional style. The fact that The Simplists, the band he usually plays with, utilise a beatboxer for the rhythms doesn't really surprise us, but I bet you they'll stand out nicely.

Miranda Barber's jazzy folk - or, more accurately, folky jazz, for there was a far larger jazz influence - was brilliantly performed by all involved. Flatcap-wearing percussionist and backing vocalist Nick Rye, guitarist Dave Hawkins and backing singer Sian Lattimer all helped the keyboardist Miranda with aplomb. Her music is filled with the kind of happy jazzy notes that fill the world with colour, just like her bright orange dress, radiating happiness and fun in glowing rays.

John Paul Palombo performed music you wouldn't expect from a young, tall, thin white lad. His stuff has a wonderfully vibrant latin influence, mixed with hints of reggae and occasionally veering into the realms of country, with elements of modern pop bands such as The Killers and the Fratellis, though without the incredibly annoying brash and bland style - in fact, precisely the opposite. The band were tight and inventive, despite having only been together for a few months. Expect more to come from John Paul and friends.

Before that, Dan Crook, Murray James and Nick Capaldi & The Spinning Sound-A-Bout played. Dan Crook's beach-bummish style was tempered with the occasional political or life message and rocking riffs, made by someone who clearly enjoys making good music.

Murray James, who's played before at PAS, brought his reggae-tinged deep blues back. Currently making an album - which we are all looking forward to - and playing some promising gigs, it honestly wouldn't surprise us if you heard his stuff soon.

Nick Capaldi's retro folk rock sounds like it's been inspired by both the Beatles and Kasabian, so, as you can probably imagine, it's slightly unusual. Not so unusual, however, that you feel lost with it. The rhythmic strains of guitar and psychedelically-painted keys suited Nick's touched-with-rawness vocals nicely.

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