My Legendary Girlfriend/The Owsley Sunshine/The Plimptons/Ives – 13th Note (15 October 2005)

Gaining extra kdos for being the young sound of Cumbernauld, or something like that, I’d seen Ives before at the launch of the compilation album Smoke. I remembered the experience fondly and was rather looking forward to seeing/hearing them again. And, very nice they are too. Like a mini Orbital (for whom they dedicate a track), we get a rather drifty set of techno-blips and Kraftwerk-blops.

I found myself pondering the place of such music in today’s music scene. I was under the impression that youngsters these days kept away from such things as it was the kind of music their parents listened to. Now, I realise that Ives have been at this for at least X years (since Smoke at least) and probably their folks were probably not ravers. But, there just seems something retro about this. Mind you it’s better than another evening of angular guitars and pencil ties. (And, I did hear one audience member comment that they could be playing a CD for all we know. Good god man, did Sean Ryder die in vain?)

Of course, the question is whether “very nice” is good enough? It’ll do for now.

I recently accused The Plimptons of half-assed dicking about. And, to be honest, there was nothing on show tonight to change my mind. Although, I was definitely in a minority. Nice cartoons, though.

Rupert Brooke once said that there’d be a corner of a dingy pub somewhere that is forever 1994. The Owsley Sunshine really like it in that corner. Tight as a gnat’s chuff, tedious as hell. If one more person complains to you about all the young bands with their angular guitars and pencil ties, point them in the direction of this mob of retro-tosh. And, weirdly, despite plowing the same tired furrow as [insert the name of your own britpop bete noir], they bring to mind the sanctimonious ‘authenticity’ of Gomez? I didn’t like them.

And, so to the reason we are all here tonight. This is My Legendary Girlfriend‘s final gig ever, ever. To be honest, I’m wasn’t exactly losing sleep over this. I’ve seen this band twice (both some time ago) and neither occasion has really made that much of an impression on me. However, on tonight’s showing I’m gonna have to reconsider. Of course, I’ll put it all down to (possible) personnel changes and time developing their craft rather than me not having opened my eyes/ears. Musically, they seem to walk a strange but blatant line between The Fall and Pulp. Blatant in so far as it makes perfect sense despite sounding like crap ‘on paper’ (so to speak).

There’s a certain elan (seriously the only word that covers it) to their performance this evening. The worst thing being that they actually sound like a band with the potential to make a mark. This is not the sound of on old band bowing out (well, it is, but you know what I mean). Oh, well, blaze of glory, leave ’em wanting more, etc etc…

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Written by Tony Kiernan

18 October 2005 at 3:45 pm

Posted in Gigs

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