Sunday, June 12, 2005

Taliband, Debonaires, Accelerants

(Arc Cafe, Saturday 11 June)

I damn near didn't go. The very name Taliband struck me as too naff to be taken seriously and I'd never heard of the Debonaires, so it was down to how much I wanted to see the Accelerants. Luckily, I did a bit of googling and found an inspiring review of them on the Critic website.

I really had no idea what the Taliband did. It turns out they produce a pleasing mix of reggae influenced rock and, more particularly, ska and a touch of old skool (i.e. fast) Northern Soul. Luckily they came with their own entourage, otherwise they would have been playing to a depressingly empty dance floor. I didn't actually join them, because I spotted one of my students dancing where I would normally be, and felt quite self-conscious, but will definitely be checking them out again and, no doubt, dancing.

If I was to say that the Debonaires did a note for note copy of Twist and Shout, that would give a fair account of where they fit in the musical spectrum. They did a total of six songs, as they knew no more, including two oroginals and T-Rex's "I Love to Boogie". I'd say that bands like the Checks have given these guys the idea to do what they're doing, but while I found them to be very good showmen, particularly the frontman and bass player, they were not that involving. I had to laugh at the wee guitar player: he came down off the stage and was trying to eyeball the audience but wasn't quite able to pull it off, just looked harmless.

Now the Accelerants - these guys were great, although I really wish they were able to play without re-tuning etc between each song, as it slowed down the momentum. By the third song, I'd forgotten my qualms about looking foolish and was getting my groove on. When they finally hit their last song, Motorcade, I was pretty much unconscious of my surroundings altogether - it was interesting watching myself re-acquaint myself with my surroundings as the song came to an end. I don't think I've ever heard any of their music before, but scored a second hand copy off RG today, so will be able to get more familiar.


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