Mistys Gigs - AndyPryke.com
Parents: WebHome > MusicILike > MistysBigAdventure
|Home, Index, Changes Blog RSS|
Best Of Blog 2007
Best Of Blog 2005 Birmingham,
How to be Happy,
Misty's Big Adventure,
Street Furniture Stickers,
Weird Internet Animations
Other People's Blogs
Birmingham Bloggers Danger! High Postage,
Silent Words Speak Loudest
Please don't ask for a sidebar link as a refusal often offends. Editorial Policy
|Misty's are one of my favourite bands. Here's a list of previous gigs, intersperced with the occasional write up (I wouldn't call them reviews). You can find out more about Misty's in general on my Misty's Big Adventure page
Tue 28 Mar 2006 - The Courtesy Group, Misty's Big Adventure and The Guilemots - Glee Club, BirminghamOK. 1st off, guess which band drew me to this gig at The Glee Club? Yep, of course, it was Misty's. The Glee "Main" room was packed. It's a seated venue, and it has (or claims to have) quite a strict door policy. Doors opened (to a queue) at 7.30, and if you hadn't picked up tickets for this sell out gig by 8.15, you're told that they will be released! Whether this happens or not I don't know. Anyway, everyone turned up pretty early, and the room was almost completely full by 8. The Courtesy Group came on in darkness, with strange single note sounding which I wasn't sure whether they were art-rock music or just a final few bits of tuning up. After a minute or two, the lead singer arrived and we were treated to a (very loud) sequence of poems and punky/rocky/art-rock songs. I liked the poetry and the performance. The lead singer and (new, 2nd gig) guitarist were both dressed in bright, highly patterned shirts and had the same hair cut, leading me to wonder if there was some sort of 2 for one mania going on. I was glad to see the group, and would definately see them again, if only to help me make more sense of the lyrics and poems. Misty's were next on, after a short interval, but for a while, it looked as if the sound desk wasn't going to switch off the reggee tracks they were playing, and the band had to stand around on stage waiting. After this, and the ear-blistering volume of the 1st band, I started to wonder about the sound desk, but no, overall we got an excellent sound. Gareth's vocals were good and clear, all the instruments seemed well balanced, and the additional vocals came through very well - except in one or two places (Bland Age never seems to get enough volume for these). My friend suggested seperate mikes for vocals and brass, maybe that's an idea, although I imagine it's pretty complicated to manage already! I've never seem Misty's play a gig where the audience has to remain seated, and rarely seen them play to audiences where the majority of people are seeing them for the first time. I had spotted a couple of people wearing Misty's badges on my way in, so I know they'd attracted some keen fans, but the Glee attracts a strange audience. A lot of people that I've never seen before (Birmingham is a city of one million people, in a conurbation of 2M, but you know what I mean. I get the impression that a lot of people who rarely go to live events come to the Glee, and a lot of people who live outside the city. Maybe it's just my prejudices! Sitting there (the 1st Misty's gig at which I've not danced), I got quite a different perspective. For a start, I was thinking... "What if I was seeing them for the first time, what would I think", and watching the audience reaction quite closely. What I saw for the first couple of songs was a kind of open-mouthed awe from some people, as if they couldn't quite believe what they were seeing and hearing. A typical Misty's gig these days starts with a spoken word prayer/dream from Gareth, followed by car crash with sound effects, some humourous stuff I won't spoil, and then into Misty's Big Adventure (the song). This could leave the audience slightly stunned, so there's absolutely no gap before we're into an All Things Bright and Beautiful parody, which is the intro to Evil. Good audience response, though the diversity of what they've heard is pretty high, they've had chance to note how tight the band are. (That's musically tight. I'm not suggesting that they're all drunk!) Next The Story of Love, quickly into Smart Guys Wear Ties, the psychadelic intro to Two Brains. Now a shadow falls (though EroticVolvo didn't turn into his black suited "shadow self"), and we're into a Serious Thing which I really think is one of my current faves, despite it being so emotionally desolate. This is the beautifully instrumented sound of a tortured heart. And, if you're not feeling particularly tortured, it's fun to have the big change of mood (and dance style) from Misty's mostly up-beat sound. It was getting a bit hard to sit still when we were served up It never stop, it never rests, it never sleeps, the one which goes "diddly diddly, diddly diddly, diddly diddly dee". Very good And another nicely titled track, a newish one at that We do, we do, we do (did I get that name right)? It's got a great rhythmic "bippy boppy" keyboard part, the whole sound being well paced, with little "suprises" which just seem to fit. You can really see how together and practiced the band is in tracks like this, where the greater regions of quiet make the split second timing stand out. Next: The Wising up Song, with it's wild "free-form jazz" like sections, ending in a parable. Finally, we're into the Bland Age, another new-ish song, humourous with some spoken word bits. OK, what I just wrote there is what's know in the trade as a "set list", that's it, a "set list", but it is a pretty typical one for Misty's currently. The other thing which I noticed even more than normal was EroticVolvo's dancing. It's a real work out, and carefully choreographed for each song. EV came down into the audience a few times, climbing over seats and tables, and dancing at (more than with, as were all sat down) members of the audience. I think my favourite from the dancing point of view is Serious Thing. I don't know, they're all my favourite when they're on! So, Misty's left the stage to great applause, and shouts for more. I'm not sure it's good etiquette for the support band to do "more", especially at a regimented place like the the Glee. Now, the headlining act of the evening, The Guilemots. Once again, there was a strange entrance for the band, with sax and claranet players starting at the back of the room, tooting here and there then processing down the aisle. I felt a bit sorry for The Guilemots at first - they had some definite sound desk problems, I don't know if they hadn't managed to sound check, or if the desk had made some mistakes or what, but the first few songs were intersperced with band members waving at the desk and pointing at various bits of kit. Eeeh! Must rush off to a gig... but quickly, I liked the Guilemots, you can download some MP3s from their website, and at one point I was thinking "This is a good song, but I'm sure they're ripped off that bit from somewhere" - turns out that it was one of the songs I'd downloaded - duh! The lead singer also did a solo bit with a blippy keyboard which was fab. Oh yes, and his brother (from The Courtesy Group) shouted out "your're shit" or something similar at one point and we all laughed. Erm, that's about it. Phew!
Sun 5th March 2006 - Misty's and Retro Spankees at The Jug of AleBit late notice for this one, big Misty's fan that I am, I hadn't read my email and almost missed this gig but luckily a friend rang me up earlier in the week to let me know. The advantage of slightly less publicity than normal was that there was space to dance! The last few gigs have been so packed that it's been too tight to do much more than jig around a bit, this time, there was space for plenty of old-school Misty's fun I think this is the 3rd time I've seen the Retro Spankees, each time supporting Misty's and this time I managed to grab a couple of CDs. They were very tight and an excellent match for Misty's. The crowd really liked them. I was a particular fan of their ironing board keyboard stand bedecked with ducks and a fluffy carrot! Other well known ironing board using bands include Pram and Dogfood. The Retro Spankees have got some excellent catchy and fun songs and seeing them reminded me of when I first discovered Misty's, long long ago
Fri 23rd Dec 2005 - Misty's Big Adventure, Dogfood and Kate's un-named bandThe Jug of Ale was packed for this gig on Misty's home turf, and they were turning people away before the 1st support had finished. That's one reason to turn up early. The other was the quality of this first gig performance from "Kate's as-yet-un-named-band", I'm afraid I don't know the names of the rest of the band! The lyrics were good, a nice bright sound, wonderful vocal harmonies and topics ranged from waking up on Christmas morning to not losing your friends. Once they get a name, they'll be one to watch out for, for now, you'll just have to hope you see them... You could be helped along by the fact that although they are un-named, they do have a brand: It's a long time since I saw Dogfood, it always seems to be that I've something else arranged for the same night as they're playing. Tonight they were on top form, with Mr Simon wearing a bright yellow safety helmet and one guitarist sporting a very fetching mop-top-like wig. The sound quality was good, and they played a lot of happy, bouncy, dancey songs. Having secured a place fairly near the front (and under the watchful eye of Pete Ashton who was perched on a table snapping away) I got down to dance to Misty's. The problem with Misty's is, to be honest, that their hard work is paying off, and they're becoming far too popular, attracting bigger crowds, making dance space severely limited! Gone are the days when you could sit down at the front of the gig, and then conga through the crowd. Even Erotic Volvo had to be "stretchered off" to recover from the heat... well, not exactly "stretchered" but you get my drift. As it's Christmas time, Misty's played their two new Christmas songs, which I haven't heard live before (though I had downloaded them from TuneTribe). Lets hope they become big Christmas hits next year! Afterwards I managed to secure a t-shirt from the as-yet-un-named band, and a couple of copies of the Christmas single. Review in German, and Translated) November 19 2005 - Mainz, Germany, Schick & Schön November 18 2005 - Dresden, Germany, Scheune November 17 2005 - Kassel, Germany, K19 November 16 2005 - Köln, Germany, Blue Shell November 10th 2005 - Islington Academy
Sunday 25th September - Jug of AleAnother storming gig at the JugOfAle, this time with material from "The Black Hole", Misty's new albumn. A couple more new songs and heart rending versions of "the story of love" and "Bigger than me" stood out. . We also had an audience sing along while "Bom" leant his guitar to the band, who at one stage were down two guitar strings and a keyboard! The set went something like: Black Hole; It never stops, it never rests, it never sleeps; Story of Love; All Things Bright and Beautiful (George Bush version); Evil; She fills the places; Everything's Odd; Elevator. Escalator, Stairs; (audience sing song of) The Bear Went Over the Mountain; Microwave ("Please microwave my head and count to 10. Take it out and we can start again."); Waiting for You; Smart Guys Wear Ties; "How did you manage to get inside my head" (new track?); "Serious thing" (great ska-like brass on this one, and one hell of a song!); Two Brains; "The gritter man's come to grit my teeth" (or at least I think that's the lyric); Remind me a Song("You know it's bigger than me..."); Wising up; Hey Man; (Then a 30 second encore due to licensing laws) - Confidence.
Saturday 24th September - Jug of AleMisty's are playing two sets at the JugOfAle this weekend, this is their first and is (loosely) based on their first studio albumn "(Misty's Big Adventure and their place in) The Solar Hifi System". The Jug is their home turf, so they had an audience who knew what they were in for. This showed itself to great effect with a wonderful version of They're Controlling our Minds with the audience swaying in synchrony and singing the "de-do, de-do" backing vocals. Smothered in Love ( the "Monkeys and Donkeys" song) in which the audience join in with the backing vocals in two parts also went well. Other notable events included a keyboard cable failure which seemed to be facilitated by EroticVolvo rolling around on the floor. EV also spent a lot of time in the audience, his blue face paint sweating off in short order. There were a couple of new songs, whose name's I'll fill in when I remember them! Misty's have played a regular spot at the Cotteridge Festival for the last few years, but this was the first time I've managed to catch them there. The festival was very well attended, with lots of "punters" as well as lots of stalls. The star of the show was Erotic Volvo, who only just survived being mobbed by small (and not so small) kids, as you can see below. At one point, one boy managed to briefly climb on his back and shouted "I've the king of hands!". Misty's are next scheduled to gig in Birmingham during September, so it'll be a Misty free summer for me, unless I make it to some out of town gig.
Sat 25th Sept 2004 - JugOfAle, Moseley, Birmingham with FriendsOfTheStarsVery packed gig - initially I (and lots of others) couldn't get in, but luckily fans of FriendsOfTheStars left after they played giving enough space for Misty's fans! Opened (and closed) with "Confidence" rather than "Hello". Played quite a few of the new songs. At one point Gareth seemed to lose his way, and asked the audience if anyone knew any of the songs we play - there was a set list on stage though! Noticibly good sound, with everyone audible, and voice clear and easy to hear - when the sound's good I always notice some more of the great lyrics.
25th July 2004 - Truck Festival, Oxford, with BruteForce. Misty's playing in the park. They went down very well, with lots of cheering from the crowd. Erotic Volvo was a massive hit with the children, and a whole gang of them took "dancing lessons" from him. Some great dancing went on - with a lot more space than is normally available at a Misty's gig. Misty's Big Adventure at the JugOfAle, very good set with 3 new songs, and good sound quality - Gareth's vocals were particularly clear and I hear quite a lot more of the lyrics of Escalator, Elevator, Stairs - which is quite a political song. As always at the Jug, the upstairs room was like a sauna, but lots of dancing went on anyway. The new songs were something like "Evil is a four letter word which doesn't mean a lot", "The Story of Love has a Beginning, a Middle and an End", I forget the title of the 3rd one.
Monday 26 April - Magnet, Liverpool
Tuesday 27 April - Bar Academy, Birmingham
Thursday 29 April - Rescue Rooms, Nottingham
Friday 30 April - Rouge, Leicester Square, London
Tuesday 4 May - The Cellar, Oxford - Reviewed at http://www.bbc.co.uk/oxford/music/2004/05/brute_force_review.shtml
Friday 28 May - Arts Cafe, Shoreditch / Aldgate, London
Saturday 29 May - The Windmill, Brixton, London
15th February 2004 - JugOfAle, Moseley, Birmingham Saturday 17th January, The Temple Bar, Sanctuary, Birmingham - Cancelled (reason unknown) Friday 19 December, The Windmill, Brixton, London. Wednesday 3rd December - JugOfAle, Birmingham Monday 8th December - 12 Bar Club, Denmark Street, London WC2H Wednesday 19th November - The Planet, Wolverhampton Saturday 29th November - The Custard Factory, Birmingham with ClubKatusi
Gig 16/7/03 at the JugOfAleA very hot gig! As always, at the Jug, the windows were firmly shut and ventilation was at a minimum. After the support the place cleared out as people went to breath and friends of the band went to say hello. I therefore plonked myself quite near the front, where I could join the other dancers. Bits which stood out: MrSimon (who also plays with DogFood) played Bass, GrandmasterGareth forgot his SpeakNSpell, so had to do the "C.I.R.C.L.E.(wait a beat)S." for Circle-Square/I Blame The Parents himself - which was entertaining and slightly less disorienting than the SNS! The version of "I don't need nobody. Especially not a dog like you" was excellent, as was "Night Time Better than the Daytime". Oh, and two audience members managed to throw their shirts over Lucy (Sax) as they stripped off. One stripy shirt somehow lodged in the Jug's wierd ceiling. An excellent gig with a great reaction from the audience. I suspect the shear heat lead to the band limiting their set and encores slightly - it was roasting!
Gig Sat 3rd May - TheRainbowFree gig at TheRainbow, Digbeth (near the MedicineBar). Went to this. Danced lots, so did everyone else! Didn't write it up.
Gig 7th Feb 2003 - MarketTavernSaw Misty's again at the MarketTavern at the launch night for Grandmaster Gareth's "One Minute Melodys" CD - around 30 one minute tunes. The CD was played in full at the Launch, which is unusual, but as it's only 30 Min, I guess it made sense. Unfortunately the sound quality wasn't up to much, so it was a bit noisy. When I listened to it at home it sounded much better, with some wierd quirky tracks and quite a lot of sampling and messing about. The band played quite a few new tracks, whereas in previous gigs their set list has been pretty fixed. I'm writing this about a week later, so it's not fresh in my mind, but I remember a kind of anti-war love song with sentiments along the lines of "I don't want to go to war, the only thing I'll fight for is you". Sounded pretty good anyway. [16/7/03 that track was "Night time better than the Daytime"] Songs included "I don't need nobody" but they skipped one of my favourites "Mulling it over". Crowd enjoyed it, and EroticVolvo got down and grooved on the dance floor with two guys who wanted him to go to the next Villa game (he's kind of red with blue rubber gloves attached, so close to the team colours).
Gig at the JugOfAle, 25th September 2002Excellent gig, very good sound quality - you could hear all the toys! Played 2 new songs, audience loved it. Supported by TheBeeMen.
Gig and Single Launch, 16th June 2002, JugOfAle, Birmingham]Saw Misty's Big Adventure at the JugOfAle, launching their new single - "I'm cool with a capital C" (B.side is the excellent "Mulling it Over". Everyone got issued with a cardboard moustache on the door, and the band themselves appeared on stage with a wide variety of top-lip hairpieces. These survived the first 3 or so songs, the first to go being the Sax player's (Lucy), closely followed by the trumpeter (Hannah) and then Grandmaster Gareth. The room was like a sauna (the Jug is never well ventilated) and there was some pretty wild dancing going on. The gig ended with a bizare kind of stage diving in which one of the audience fell drunkenly onto the stage at the end of the 1st encore, knocking over the microphone stand and lying in the fetal position! I got a single! Now all I have to do is get a turntable.
Gig 16th April 2002, at TheAcademy, BirminghamFirst point - they definately know how to play their instruments. Bad point - at some points in the early set, the sound balance was bad - the brass/wind/supporting vocal section was too low and bass guitar, keyboards and lead guitar(?) + perhaps vocals was too high. But, at least you could hear the main vocals. The first role of the sound engineer should surely be to ensure that everyone performing can be heard. OK, now back to the gig... The evening started with DJing/mixing/scratching - I'm not qualified to judge it, but it seemed good to me. The tracks were well defined, and the source's well chosen. After 1/2 an hour or so, Misty arrived, cowled and cloaked and surrounded by very real mist. About 7 people joined the stage, including a "Jester"[*] in a very striking outfit, who danced in the back corner of the stage throughout. Misty seem to me to come out of the Birmingham Low-Fi tradition, the number of people on stage and the large sound reminicent of some Pram, but not immitative, with shades of 40's swing at points from the Sax and Trumpet as well as Ska and bright-fun-punk sounds. The brass section really brought the sound alive and added a sense of fun and enjoyment. Scratched beats added too the sound too. The first four or so tracks were excellent (although I couldn't name any), and were followed by songs such as "I don't need nobody, 'specially a dog like you" (sounds like a dirge, but was fun/happy). Misty played a reasonably, but not over-long set, but bizarely, their "final song" had all the band leave the stage, excepting the lead singer, the Jester (who beatboxed) and the DJ, for an acoustic final about a cow in a field - not the best end to ensure an encore, but it was demanded anyway. The band came back, played another track and were then joined by BruteForce, "direct from New York". I'd say that most of the band were under 25, Brute was probably a lot closer to 45. He wore a suit, had slick back hair, and bush eyebrows, which he brushed on and off throughout the set. My guess is that Brute has done a lot of caberet, and a lot of gigs. He writes his own material, and is like a younger and surrealer TomLehrer. Misty and Brute had obviously rehersed, and they played a blinding set - his caberet style, their lively happy sound. They started with a song about sitting on a sandwich, and how it was such a good thing to do in our modern technological world. The only other track I can name is the ExtremistPolka, but he also did one about "Jim's(?) Garage" - pronounced "gaar-adje" in the america way, but changed in the last verse to "garidje" - the more local pronunciation. BruteForce carried on to do a set on his own - obviously a seasoned performer and good keyboards player, with a string of quirky and original songs including a squirel song and a hare-based sing along. Misty rejoined Brute for another 4 or so songs, and again, made fantastic noise. Definitely a band to see again. [*] EroticVolvo
This page linked from:
|Powered by TWiki|