Home » OOTB Reviews » OOTB 292 – 13 March 2008

OOTB 292 – 13 March 2008

OOTB 292 – 13 March 2008

John Downie, Rosie Bell, Hannah O’Reilly, Susanna McDonald, Jake Cogan & Ross Coburn, Ivor, Mike, Furious

John Downie
Well Jonnny’s back and this time he’s much more confident. J treats us to a number of amusing stories between songs, about how reviewers have commented on how scruffy he looks (so tonight he’s wearing a shirt) and how bad his guitar playing is (well it is simple, but it suits his unashamedly ‘pop’ delivery).
‘Times, they are a changing’ is typical of this and quite a catchy tune.
The second number adds a capo which unfortunately makes the guitar soo out of tune its painful. It also has lots of strangely unresolved 4th at the ends of lines. Hmm. At this point I pause to consider how lovely the room looks with all the candles that Jim has spread around.
‘I’ll Sail away’ is his most commercial sounding of the night, with its chug, chug guitar its not virtuosic, but its competant, who were these other reviewers?

Rosie Bell
This is Rosie’s first time playing in public since she broke her wrist, and is enjoying ‘getting back in the saddle’. Bad joints, uppity sustain pedal and poor keyboard notwithstanding, its great to hear lyrics of this quality. We are treated to a set of ‘Pollen and Salt’, ‘Nice to have you around’, and ‘The Open Mic.’ ‘Go down to the open-mic and we can dream together’ says it all.

Hannah O’Reilly
Susannah has given Hannah a present of a pink Ukulele this afternoon, and Hannah has already written a song for it. The diminutive instrument is camper than Craig Hill running around a field of pink tents, and causes no end of hilarity/heckling. I insist that its just a matter of perspective and Hannah holds it out at arms length until it looks almost guitar sized. Perhaps the instrument is fine, but Hannah supped from the bottle marked ‘drink me’. Who knows, but it’s a curious juxtaposition of a beautiful song played with a comedy instrument. ‘It was dead good’, I find written on my notes, probably by Ben.

Susannah MacDonald in 2004

Susannah MacDonald in 2004

Susannah McDonald
Susannah brings a stagefull of goodies tonight, and sits surrounded by equipment. She starts however with a belter ‘singing you a love song’ with just the guitar.
Buddha on the Sideboard is a great song, but it is in the set for one reason only, on its last outing RSC misheard the title as ‘Buddha, the Cyborg’. And tonight this song is indeed followed by a new song of that name. Its all about trying to meditate when your kids are driving you irate, surely if Buddha was a Cyborg he would struggle as we do. My favourite was ‘Remembered Laughter’ based on the Noel Coward poem of the same name. It’s a sophisticated song in 5/8, played with far more assurance that its last outing, and very affecting with its powerful lyrics.
Susannah rounds off the night with ‘Insomniatic’ using all her gadgetry to create loops on the fly with guitar, Cahon, keyboard, and vocals all taking their turn.
The whole point of this song is lying awake with the same thing going around and around –  I guess loops are appropriate, but its mighty difficult to concentrate on your performance whilst operating all this machinery. I did, however love the inspector gadget keyboard line – and secretly I think we all want to play with her toys.

Jake Cogan & Ross Coburn (debut)
Jake and Ross are a fine act, normally frequenting Sandy Bells. It certainly doesn’t sound like a debut to me.
Ross’ guitar is fabulous, lovely open-tuned playing, very accomplished and the Jake’s vocals are fairly amazing too, she stands at the mic with body language very much like Debbie Harry, all pouting and attitude, which I loved. They play ‘Foolish Hearts’, ‘Spinning Room’ (about being pished) and ‘Honest Mirror’. A classy set all round.

Instrumental. Ivor says he has just been pursuaded to try open tunings, and nice it is too. I’d have to say it sounds a little like the backing to a song rather than complete on its own, but he says it’s a work in progress, so we’ll wait and see. Perhaps next time he’ll sing. The playing provoked lots of appreciate sounds from people around me.

As a curious piece of technical hiccoughs, I start to hear a heartbeat behind the music. It gradually becomes more invasive, before suddenly stopping at the end of the tune. Actually its Mike’s guitar dying, and although entirely unintended it was quite effective. His second is from his band ‘Salvador’ and is altogether more poppy. He rounds off with a third number that is more frenetic and has more spannish guitar, but vocals a bit like ‘Ferry cross the Mersey’.

And rounding off the evening a performer who apparently used to play regularly in the early days of OOTB is back. ‘Their time’s more precious than mine’, having heard many anti-war songs, its interesting to hear one as a call to remember service personnel. PMR says its very John Mellencamp. ‘Nothing’s right’ a song with a rather curious double bend, and finally ‘Another Wave’. This is a very accomplished and controlled set and fine songwriting too. An excellent end to a very enjoyable evening’s music.

WP2Social Auto Publish Powered By : XYZScripts.com