25 August 2007

bout and anout

I defeated my customary indolence and recalcitrance this evening, to visit one of my Brother's events. I'd planned to go to the Conwy River Festival last week, but was basically "fagged out" (a WWII era term for tiredness, having nothing to do with the American term "faggot", which, to any right minded Englishman (or Welshman, but that doesn't sound the same) is a mystery-meat sphere, heavy on onions and gravy, and probably containing animal parts too gruesome to mention.) so it never happened. Tonight, I left the fucking house, so in the custom of blogs and online journals everywhere "GO ME!". Me go-ed to Hendre Hall, and to SNOGFest.

First band of the evening was the Santa Cruz River Band, out of Tuscon AZ, now hanging out in a barn near Bangor. Not very country, thankfully, but very accomplished, and with a VERY appreciative and mixed crowd. Quite wistful and soulful for three bearded old men with ukuleles and cowboy hats. My brother ushered them off stage and tried to encourage some of the audience to maintain their high by going to the next hall to try Salsa dancing. How many did? I can't be sure because...

I was drawn to an acoustic sound by a big fire, and found Carl, lit like a hippy, but with fairly contemporary dress sense, tap dancing his feet over a bewildering array of effects pedals whilst eliciting a variety of drum sounds, from bongos to bass by whacking his guitar in strategic locations, which a repeat pedal would duplicate in perpetuity for the duration of the song. Self-accompanying in this fashion he replicated the sound of a whole band, setting up percussion and rhythm guitar on top of which he could solo and sing. His sound was mostly like Led Zeppelin's forays into funk driven slow-rock, quite impressive for one man, with one guitar, and a bucket of effects pedals. I did manage to capture his cover of Pink Floyd's DSotM opener, Breathe, on my phone camera which may appear later.

The variety act for the evening seemed to be led by Gaius Baltar opening with a screeching fiddle which he alternated with a wailing song delivery. A non-descript guitarist had no chance of competing for memory space with this or the topless look-a-like of a young Noel Edmonds beating the shit out of his drumkit. The pain in my ears when they finally stopped suggested that, as far from rock as their pre-fame Adam and the Ants sound was, their amps went up to 12. Pure comedy. Possibly not intentionally so.

I narrowly avoided being dragged into a beginner's Salsa class and removed my immaculately dressed self from the uniformly scruffy revelers, observing some 40-something slappers pogo-ing to classic Prince tracks in both a room, and a world of their own.

I wish I could have stayed, but having to get up at stupid-o-clock in the morning precludes me from going to bed at stupid-o-clock at night. Such follies remain in my past, along with 3 day hangovers and driving to work still drunk from the night before.

Oh, YouTube finally got around to degrading the already poor quality video, in that special way that they do. I'd skip the first minute though, as the end of tehe previous song just sounds a tinny mess through the phone's microphone.