So, Alt-Fest got cancelled. Rather gutted about that. I was looking forward to a weekend seeing some favourite bands and also discovering new music and bands along the way. I guess a number of bands had already organised travel to the UK as a (much) smaller festival turned up at Electrowerkz in Angel.
The SOS Festival played over this weekend and many of the bands who were booked to appear at Alt-Fest played here instead. One of my favourite bands played on Sunday 17 August and I travelled there to see them. I also took my niece as I was going to take her to Alt Fest for her birthday.
Here’s the timings sheet from the front door of the entrance. It’s blurry because I took it in a hurry.
This bothered me slightly! The last train home was at 23:43 from St Pancras, just over a mile from the venue. It wouldn’t be worth it to leave early, or to get the tube, the quickest method to get to the mainline would be to run. We decided that was what we would do.
Jared Louch and Mark Plastic were good fun. Mark Plastic was a guitarist and he played along to a backing track while Jared Louch sang. The songs were reasonable but it was the segways what were great. Jared Louch was an older man of rock and didn’t care. He was funny.
Next up were Global Citizen. As a band they were good but the music didn’t do a great deal for me. There were two keyboardists, a drummer and the singer. The structure of the songs didn’t really have any bass lines. The bass sounds were created using a chord progression on the keyboards with a choral sound. It just didn’t work for me.
XP8 were playing their last ever gig. This is a shame as they were really good. According to Wikipedia they are from Rome, which surprised me somewhat as they sounded perfectly English, but then, what do I know? There songs had pumping bass lines and a good fast and hard dance beat over the top. They had a video show in the background to which I didn’t really pay attention. Their songs were interesting, well structured and both of them seemed to be having a really good time. A minor thing is that the not-singer seemed to look a lot like Greg Wallace from Masterchef and this was a little off-putting, although more my problem than his. I’m not sure what they are going to do now, but I was pretty impressed with their set. They did over-run by about 20 minutes!
Finally Aesthetic Perfection were on. This was causing me slight problems as they were due to do a seventy minute set and they were late. I didn’t want to miss any AP but then again, I didn’t want to spend the night in St Pancras station waiting for the first train home [I’d done that plenty as a teenager].
Aesthetic Perfection were excellent. All of their songs were good and they had great energy. I do have a problem with their live sound. This is the second time I have seen them and some of the best bits of their songs are the high pitched “twiddly” bits. When playing live these seem incredibly quiet in the mix. A lot of the timings in the songs come from these sections and I feel that something is a little lacking. This *could* be my problem, maybe my ears are too old, but my niece also couldn’t really hear those bits. She had a great time, and even got to hold the singer’s hand.
There was slight confusion on stage as they played a song and then announced that it was their last one. I’m pretty sure the club has a curfew and so the band had to finish. I was starting to get worried that we wouldn’t see all of the AP set. They had about ten minutes before we had to leave. AP left the stage, we called for an encore and then they played two more songs.
After the last song, which conveniently was “Spit It Out”, I say conveniently because I think it’s their standard set finisher, my niece and I ran out the door, down the steps and then the mile and a bit to St Pancras station. We got there with just enough time to buy a bottle of water and get on the train before we departed.
Here’s how far we moved over the entire day: