STARSAILOR + SHACK (Fair Trade Show)
Coronet, Elephant & Castle, Friday June 27th

Possibly the scousiest scouser I have ever seen, Shack's MIck Head is obviously having a ball. Constantly shouting "come 'ed" and "'ave it" at his bandmates, he encourages them to slam out a great set of acoustic-driven numbers from "HMS Fable" and "Here's Tom With The Weather". Not being a fan, and knowing more about the singer's drug troubles than his music, Shack are a revelation.

Distinctly NOT a revelation though, are Starsailor. No suprises here.

It seems like they've been around for years, each single since "Alcoholic" getting more and more airplay, yet being less and less interesting. They're not great to look at, the songs all sound the same, and any individuality they do have is drowned out by James Walsh's foghorn vocals. And it's not as if the music mix is quiet either.

There are times tonight where you really can't imagine his yodelling get any louder... and then it does. There are plenty of distinctive, powerful vocalists out there at the moment - Finn from The Veils, The guy from Delays - but they're restrained compared to this.

I beat a retreat to the bar, and still have to leave after one more beer - it's just too much. I suggest that since this is a Fair Trade charity show, swapping the line-up would've been exactly that.

Richy [ June 29th, 2004 ]

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