I’m pretty sure this is the closest gig to home that I’ve paid to get into. It’s certainly my first one at the Riverside One Studios next to Chatham bus station. Chuck in a top-notch band, and a mere fiver to get in, and we were definitely onto a winner.
I do find it reassuring when, during a pre-match pint, the main band wander in to the same pub. It confirms that I’m in the right area, I’ve managed to get there on the right day and that the gig will more than likely be going ahead. Not all of these have happened on previous days.
The privilege of being the first band to play a Community Centre Presents gig here were Swearwolves, consisting of one person singing and playing bass: not something I’ve seen before.
Probably fair to say the songs weren’t overwhelmingly upbeat but, as much of life isn’t, this seemed fair enough. As a Dad of a couple of young people, who seem to be under much more pressure than I was at that age, I can empathise with the angst being displayed. Also, I always admire solo artists – there’s nowhere to hide if things go askew. It’s just you and whatever you can think of to defuse the situation and move on.
The night’s main attraction though were Bristol’s Trust Fund and I couldn’t help but wonder what had persuaded them to troop down to Medway on a Sunday evening. (I found out later that they like playing towns and venues they haven’t been to before, which is an admirable line to follow).
A man lighter than their recent Indietracks appearance, during which Ellis appeared strangely distracted, they were on top form, although the fairly intimate setting did lend it rather more of an air of rehearsal room than seething mosh-pit. Well, it was Sunday evening.
Dan is always worth keeping an eye on, unlike many drummers. He wandered off during a song where he wasn’t needed very much, disappearing through a door at the side, returning in time to join in when required. He also played while flat on the floor for one song.
I love the approach to their songs which aren’t your usual verse/chorus standards and some of the newer songs are more of bursts of ideas, than fully-formed 3-minute stories but it all sounded wonderful. Shades of early Supergrass and bags of energy and enthusiasm, coupled with a tight performance gave Community Centre Presents a night they should be proud of. And well done to those people who turned out to see it.
A really successful opening night and I really hope they do many more like this. People were invited to write down who else they’d like to see play in Medway and it’ll be very interesting to see who they get along next time from the mixture of suggestions. Hint: Peaness or Young Romance would be just dandy, if you want my view, folks. Not too many people in either band (it’s a small venue) and both are at about the right stage of their careers where they might consider it. Oh, and both are excellent, of course!