Sometimes the trouble with running ethical, volunteer driven events, is that the volunteers don’t turn up on the night. It’s just one of the hazards that we have learned to work with to be fair, and generally there is always another volunteer on hand to step in and run the door for us though. On a perfect storm, no one is available, meaning when I get to the event itself I am suddenly jack of all trades – door watching, reviewing, storming around making sure everything is running smoothly, drinking heavily. It’s a full-time job.
The balancing act with all the above is that when I need to step up and do it in Ivories, I can pretty much review as best I can from the front door, by keeping it open a wee bit and popping my head in the gap. That way I can keep one eye and one ear on the door, and one eye and one ear on the band. It’s not actually as complicated as it sounds, but if it starts getting cold then you do occasionally get a death stare from an un-coated punter on the inside.
Our host for the night was KC Johnston, a talented bloody musician, and a great gig host if ever there was one. If you are going to grab him for a gig though, try and keep him soberish as he hosts. Like most Glaswegians, the drunker he gets, the filthier his patter becomes. I found the jokes between acts hilarious, some others didnea quite get them. Ce La Vie. Him and his patter are both welcome at any NHC night, he is a cracking troubadour of the highest caliber, and the fact that he also runs a couple of successful open mic nights in Glasgow is testament to both his talents, and his showmanship.
After KC opened the night, we got right into the band side of things. First up was LK Projection, and to be honest I had no idea what to really expect from these guys. Are they rock? Punk maybe? A slice of crazed pop? To be honest they are all the above and more, the live set was an adrenaline stab to the heart of pure, unadulterated, maniacal musical energy, and I have to say I loved every frenetic minute of it. These are the guys who stunned the crowd so much that Jimbo from the band everywhere (and Savage Cut’s special guest on the night) came out to the door to make damn sure I was watching. It was a little bit of madness and a big dollop of genius all in one. Get out and experience LK Projection as soon as you can.
Second band to take to the stage on the night was the always awesome Savage Cut (and friends!), and as per usual, they are an absolute beast of a live band. Unfortunately, Bobbie Deans couldn’t make it down to do his live turn with them, but they had both Jimbo McKeller and Lisa Kowalski up there with them to sing on their own co-starring strokes of genius. Both Jimbo and Lisa are two of the most talented musos we have worked with at NHC, and the guys at Savage Cut just keep knocking collaboration after collaboration out of the park. They quite literally do not have a bad song in the set, in fact, I don’t think they have a weak song among any of the tracks I have heard of theirs. Don't get me wrong, they are probably very different to most bands you have ever heard live, but to be honest that’s a great thing. I certainly wouldn’t want to take to the stage after Savage Cut have just been on, as you would need to be at the height of your game to play after them. Thankfully I think we got the best band for the job, the indomitable Soul Remover.
Soul Remover, as far as aggressive, loud, and well written hard rock goes, are one of the best around at what they do. I am truly confused as to why these guys aren’t packing out bigger venues by now, as the skill they have on stage, and the way they operate, has all the makings of a bloody stadium filling act. I mean, at this point I’m no longer reviewing from a crack in the door, as I’m still a bit of a headbanger at heart, so I am now propping up the bar and these guys have my full attention. Sadly, this was Craig’s final show with the band, which tinged the event a little, but by God what a send-off they gave him. Probably one of the best sets from these guys I have seen to be honest, if they aren’t kicking down doors and playing bigger venues soon then I’ll eat my own sock… and that would be fucking horrific. That’s how confident I am.