The Lost Cavalry's Diary
9/4/10 : The Lock Tavern with Dave Tattersall from Wave Pictures
Last night the Cavalry rolled into the Lock Tavern in Camden for a stripped down (musically, not physically) set supporting the brilliant Dave Tattersall of the equally brilliant Wave Pictures as he launched his new solo album. Based on last night's offerings it sounds like it will be brilliant too, so check that one out.
First on the bill, Silent Paper Radios also impressed with a nicely melancholy collections of songs to set a tone for the night that was a bit more inkeeping with our own style than last time out where we followed on from a selection of dubstep craziness (I still have no idea what that is, but the kids seem to like it. See Nick's post below for more on that).
Sadly lacking Toby this time, who is off enjoying himself in Japan, the remaining 4 of us squeezed onto the, erm, diminutive stage and set about unleashing some acoustic-pirate-folk on the impressively packed-in crowd. We played a familiar set but with the added trials and tribulations of trying to cover for Toby - it's amazing how indispensible he's become after such a short amount of time, and after juggling glock, snare, harmonica and the proverbial kitchen sink for this gig I will be delighted to have him back.
Big thanks to monkeysuit-Dave and sound-Dave for organising and making everyone sound great, seriously it was like Night of the Living Daves - a bad horror film where everyone shares a name.
6/4/10 : Recording on a farm by the sea
And so to No Recording Studios, in deepest rural Essex, to record drums and guitars for two new tunes. The rustic surroundings and overpowering smell of horse manure belied a cool studio and we managed to get things sounding frankly rather awesome, in a nice lo-fi kind of way. Producer John was extremely patient with our requests for a guitar sound that was simultaneously bright, warm, crunchy and growly, and despite the inevitable rush to finish at the end of the day we're well pleased with the tracks we got done. Vocals, bass and assorted bits, bobs, bells and whistles to be added at home as soon as poss.
Next was a late-night gig on Easter Saturday/Sunday at Jack's in London Bridge. The Wonderland Ball was a bit surreal, with face-painting and flowers and cakes and Alice-themed costumes, but despite feeling a bit underdressed we thought the set went down well (a special mention goes to Dave for soldiering on seamlessly as his drum kit came apart around him). Our folky charms were a bit different to the rest of the bands and djs, who were a lot more dancey than us; as Easter morning wore on, your correspondent headed off to his bed, but various other band-members were still to be found enthusiastically throwing shapes on the floor to the heavy dubstep, or something.
Next up for the Cavalry? A (mostly) acoustic set supporting David Tattersall of The Wave Pictures at the Lock Tavern (April 8th), and, before too long, getting the fruits of our recording labours out to the music-buying public... Whey, and indeed, hey.
20/3/10 : White Heat and The Windmill
This week we played our first gig at White Heat - the club where Oliver and I used to visit every Tuesday back when it was at Infinity and our mate Jon used to DJ downstairs. Half the people I know in London I met through White Heat, including our new band member Toby. It was good to be back at White Heat - I'd played there before as the drummer in Wolfie and guitarist in Fanfarlo, but this time I got to be the singer and stand at the front, which is of course the best place to stand. I'd forgotten how high up the stage is at Madame Jo Jo's.
We had to rush round the corner after sound check to meet a PR company so we missed the first band, but the headliners were a brilliant band called Foreign Office, who's song 'think about leaving the house' is still stuck in my head now. It was a fun gig, we played our new song 'The Flood' and it seemed to go down pretty well. I get to play my new concertina on it, which hopefully everyone could hear ok - I need to get a built-in mic for it maybe but I bet they're expensive.
Thursday night we played at The Windmill in Brixton. If you've ever been to The Windmill you'll know that from the outside it looks a bit dubious - someone described it to me as looking like a hippy scout hut - but I have never been to a night at The Windmill that hasn't been brilliant. There's something about the place that just has an amazing, friendly vibe, and despite the slightly strange stage layout the sound is always really good. Thursday night showed that to be true - Tim had put together a great lineup that really worked together - Twin Falls were beautiful, and Heliopause had a lovely rich sound. And they were all great guys too. We played one of the most fun gigs we have played so far, despite a few entaglements with ukulele leads and the especially hot lights! Mike from Urban75 (he's the unofficial King of Brixton) kindly took some photos which can be seen here: www.urban75.org.
Our next gig is for Wonderland and will be a bit different - playing at around midnight in a club inside some of the arches near London Bridge. Then we have a good acoustic gig coming up at The Lock Tavern supporting Dave from The Wave Pictures. Apart from that, we're going back into the studio over Easter Weekend to record two new tracks, more on that later...
1/3/10 : Sea Monster
On Friday we had our first gig as a five-piece - Toby is now officially inaugurated as our melodica, glockenspiel, guitar and ukulele playing fifth member. And he sings some mean backing vocals too. The gig went well, thanks in no small part to Mike from Offline Club who organised the PA and mixed the sound for us and was generally brilliant (thanks again Mike!) and we played a new song called 'The Flood' as our final tune - where I get to play my new concertina.
We've got some good gigs coming up in March including White Heat and The Windmill, Brixton. White Heat kind of feels like the place that it all started. Half of the friends I know in London are via some kind of White Heat connection, including Toby in fact, and it was because of White Heat that I played drums in Wolfie and guitar in Fanfarlo. Oliver is the same I think - it's going to be good to play at White Heat with The Lost Cavalry!
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