12/16/2005 05:32:00 AM|W|P|dan|W|P|Monday night and I'm walking into the CIA, not knowing what to expect. I've loved The Pogues for longer than I've loved any other artist (with the possible exception of Springsteen - they both hit me around the same time of confused early adolesence), but one way or another I've never seen them play live. And now I'm about to. I always consider If I Should Fall From Grace With God the first proper record I ever bought. I say record, I mean prerecorded cassette (remember them?), purchased with some Christmas money from the late unlamented Rival Records in Plymouth. I remember sitting in my bedroom listening to it on a crappy mono tape player, with the volume turned down and one finger poised on the STOP button in case my parents heard any of Shane MacGowan's zestier lyrics. The first time I heard Bottle Of Smoke I was amazed, shocked and excited. I didn't know you were allowed to swear in a song!
Twenty odd years down the line, the band are on a reunion tour. Most of my doubts centre around MacGowan himself. Genius songwriter he may well be, but his recent past has been well documented enough to worry about how well he can stand up to a large arena tour, not to mention the times I saw him stumbling round Dublin on crutches. So, the intro music (Straight To Hell by The Clash - oh jesus, what a great song) plays, the lights go down, the band come on and....and Shane's steaming, Most of the opening Streams Of Whiskey sounds like a particularly ugly chucking out time, and the next couple of tunes don't fare much better. Then about five songs in, up comes the instrumental Repeal Of The Licencing Laws, and something clicks. From here on in, it's plain sailing. The band are tight as you like, more energetic and fiery than any bunch of fortysomething folk musicians have a right to be, they play the right songs, and by the time we get to the penultimate Fairytale Of New York, after stopping off at Dirty Old Town, Sally MacLennane, The Irish Rover and plenty others, Shane is as close to note perfect as he's ever going to get. Cerys Matthews takes the Kirsty MacColl part, and damned if I don't have a tear in my eye by the end. I won't leave it another twenty years.
I am blogging to: Kraftwerk|W|P|113467979407407750|W|P|Any Which Way The Wind May Be Blowing|W|Pfirstname.lastname@example.org/08/2005 05:18:00 AM|W|P|dan|W|P|Worked a twelve hour shift on my nominal day off. Walked home in the pouring rain listening to Joy Division. Let it never be said that I don't know how to enjoy myself.|W|P|113398681583211440|W|P|Misery|W|Pemail@example.com/09/2005 12:52:00 AM|W|P|Marcus|W|P|Well I'm glad that you're having fun.
Two posts in as many days, aren't we all lucky. ;)