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Blog: Art Brut Made Me Rock Out

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Last night, after a pretty successful Moon Horse rehearsal (not ALL lines perfect, but we've still got a fortnight until we have to SHOW it to anyone, right?), myself and Mr S Hewitt got the 73 bus to ANGEL, there to go to a GIG.

For LO! it was the second night of Art Brut's residency at The Lexington, for which we had TICKETS. I was QUITE EXCITED about it to be honest, as a) Art Brut are GRATE b) the new album is ACE c) the Lexington is a BRILLIANT venue d) I had reason to suspect that the support would be PRETTY DARN GOOD.

For Lo! Again! It was Keith Top Of The Pops And His Minor UK Indie Celebrity Allstar Backing Band - the band I have probably seen MORE THAN ANY OTHER over the past couple of years! This meant that me AND Steve both pretty much SANG ALONG with all the songs, which sounds FAB coming through the Lexington's excellent PA, as LARGE as it should be with 11 people on stage but also allowing the always excellent SONGS to come over. "Two Of The Beatles Are Dead" was one of the best versions I've heard, although I was a little alarmed at the appearnace of a B FLAT CHORD in a new song. Is this a harbinger of a JAZZ direction?

We sat and had a bit of an old CHAT during the next band before heading back up for the MAJESTY that is the Art Brut Live Experience. MAN ALIVE but they were FANTASTIC - I would, of course, hate to go over the top in ANY way, but... er... it made me think of THE BEATLES post-Hamburg. That's not too over the top AT ALL is it? What i mean is that it was CLEAR that they had played A LOT OF GIGS, had learnt ALL The Tricks Of Rock along the way, and were not afraid to DEPLOY them. The BEST thing about it though was that the whole band were at it - Jasper The Guitarist was leaning out into the crowd to get them to join in, Ian The Lead Guitarist was STRIKING POSES, Mikey The Drummer was COMMANDING the audience to DO HIS WILL, and perhaps best of all Freddy The Bass Player, who always seems to stand right at the back, afeared, was this time SINGING ALONG the whole way through. You KNOW it is a good band when the bass player sings along, it becomes a FOCUS for everyone ELSE to join in. And there was a LOT of that.

And of course Mr E Argos was at the front and in charge throughout - there are MANY MANY MANY things to admire about his work, from his DELIGHTFUL stage manner and EXCELLENT lyrics (good golly they really are brilliant, and you could hear ALL of them lats night), but the thing i would salute him most for is the GENIUS way in which he has turned ADMIN ISSUES into STAGECRAFT. Whenever you see a band play there is usually a big bit where the singer (or in some cases guitarist) has to look round and check that everybody else in the band is ready to start. It is pretty ESSENTIAL - it takes us AGES sometimes - but Mr Argos has developed this into his "READY ART BRUT!" rallying call. It's like "Avengers Assemble" or "To Me, My X-Men" or - NO HIGHER PRAISE - "It's Clobberin' Time"!

Talking of which - after a SMASHING re-write of "Modern Art Makes Me Want To Rock Out" taking in Eddie's trip to the DC Comics Office (featuring THE WHOLE AUDIENCE crouching down for AGES before LEAPING in the air to the sound of recent major DC crossover events - really) he then re-did "DC Comics And Chocolate Milkshake" as "Marvel Comics And Banana Milkshake" in honour of certain Marvel fans/EMPLOYEES in the room. It is a testament to his SKILL that BANANA Milkshake is EXACTLY the correct flavour of milkshake that goes with Marvel Comics. I personally, for instance, love BOTH the flavour and the company, but have not much time for Chocolate flavour or DC.

In fact, the only thing that i didn't like about the gig (NB SARCASM APPROACHING) was being namechecked again as "MJ Hibbett, Top Of The Pops". OH HOW I HATE THAT SORT OF THING! If I looked like i was GRINNING LIKE A WAZZOCK at that point it was just me bravely coping with the invasion of my privacy. It was AWFUL... goodness knows why i am bringing it up again here, hem hem.

So yeah, it was FANTASTIC all round, and then afterwards we sat and had a beer and chat with a host of LOVELY people which may have DEVOLVED into HUGGING variously. It was lovely, gigs are GRATE aren't they?

posted 1/6/2011 by MJ Hibbett

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