When Junktion 7 closed down at the end of last year I feared for the future of live music in Nottingham. Thankfully, somebody saw sense and rebooted the venue and here I am back at, the renamed, Seven for another Ginger gig.
Other than the name, nothing much else has changed, and the venue remains probably the best small venue in the city.
For once, due to unprecedented levels of organisation, a little luck and deliberately ignoring the fact that the Champions League semi-final second leg was on the Telly, I found myself in the venue before the first band had started.
Dear Superstar were enthusiastic, slick and up for a good time. And unfortunately not my brew. Five guys playing a thunderous power rock, complete with unnecessary screams and Dave Lee Roth T-shirts, I left for the peace of the downstairs bar where, later on, I was to find Dear Superstar having a wonderfull sing-along to a piano in the corner, which sounded much better.
I’d squeezed passed Tony Wright having what seemed like a light hearted argument with the man on the door earlier, so I knew the man was in the building and I timed it just right to venture back up to the gig room to catch the first song from Laika Dog
I knew nothing about Laika Dog before this gig (and a similar amount about Terrorvision) but was pleasantly suprised by the band. Tony is a good frontman and kept us all amused with some witty banter – the most memorable being “If you’d come from Keighley, you’d sound like this” – between songs and got the crowd involved, encouraging us to roar the band along at the start and end of most of the numbers, and prasing us for being “Shit Hot” on more than one occassion.
The band had a sort of sub Stone Roses/Charlatans/Madchester sound, but better.
Tony told us that if we didn’t know how to spell Laika Dog then it was shown clearly on the T-shirts for sale at the merch stall. The band is named after the Russian space dog Laika and I think you should be able to spot the pun.
Unfortunately, I enjoyed the set so much that the only track name I can remember was Piano Song, and I only remember that because Tony introduced it as being the song that has the Piano in it that has become known as Piano Song.
As it was Tony’s birthday (41), Ginger appeared with a cake with some candles for him to blow out. Bless.
Top band. Top front man. Like he said, shit hot.
The gig was heading for a late finish when Ginger and the band appeared on stage at about 10ish. Ginger was sporting possibly the worst shirt this side of Hawaii and a camouflage baseball cap, while Jase Edwards on guitar had tried to slip on stage unnoticed, disguised as a Mexican. The rest of the band was made up of Eddie Eyeball on bass (dressed as Uncle Sam), Denzel on drums (WWE wrestling mask) and Dick Decent on piano/keyboards (I couldn’t see him).
Ginger greeted us by asking why we were laughing and hadn’t we seen that it said fancy dress on the ticket.
From what I can remember we spent the rest of the night listening to Casino Bay, Drinking In The Daytime, 10 Flaws Down, Why Can’t You Just Be Normal… and This Is Only A Problem, together with a couple of new ones including “Return of the Northern Cardinal”, which had a very country feel about it.
Ginger’s high standard of banter with the crowd was maintaned, and as he accepted drinks from the crowd, swigging from what looked like a can of Stella, and downing shots of JD’s and Coke, I guess he’s fallen off the wagon again, which probably bodes well for the new Wildhearts album.
All too soon, it was all over, but after a short break the band returned to the stage for a rousing Church Of The Broken Hearted, a bit of banter – during which someone behind said “Get on with it, 29 x The Pain and we can all go home”, despite Ginger saying beforehand that they would not be playing any Wildhearts songs – and a rousing Sonic Shake.
Apparently, you could hang around after the gig and chat with the band, while they signed CD’s and stuff, which would’ve been good, but it was already too late for me and I dashed off home.
My highlight; Girls Are Better Than Boys. Awesome.
Great music, played live, played brilliantly. What more can you ask for?