Friday, May 30, 2008

They Made a T-Shirt Out of My Dreams

It's great that Debaser has finally gotten round to booking some classy bands. I'll miss The Ruby Suns next week, but what does that matter when THE ZEBRAS are playing later this summer?! I forgot to bring my camera to the gig last night, which was The Last Ever Saturday Looks Good to Me Gig In Sweden. First I thought I should post one of my crappy pics of Television Personalities (who did an equally crappy set at the same venue recently) instead. But now I think it's only right that the night went un-documented. Here's the setlist instead. Very long since I grabbed a setlist after a gig, but last night was so special.

This is the story of how I went to see a First Floor Power reunion gig, but went home before they came on. The characters in this story are Me, My Friends, Nils-Martin (also a friend, don't mistake me), The Girl With the Rickenbacker, SLGTM, and the T-Shirt.

The first and only time I went to see First Floor Power I was 17 and it was at the city festival held every August. This actually deserves it's own story, a rather interesting one about municipal transport and two girls, but the outcome of the whole thing was I arrived so late I only caught one or two songs. After this the band split up, so I was a bit excited about seeing a full set this time. Not that've listened to them in the interim years, but anyway. Of course there were also the wonderful SLGTM on the bill, who I missed on last year's tour. I got to the venue about five minutes before 10 pm, after which it costs money to get in. I met My Friends, and also discovered about half the crowd seemed familiar, which is something I never experience these days. After realising it was actually a tad chilly outside we went in. Waiting for the first band to go on someone poked me on the way to the restroom. This was Nils-Martin, who I haven't seen in a while. He'd been to see SLGTM in Copenhagen just recently - a dedicated fan. This time he wanted to dance though, and I thought that seemed a perfectly sound idea. Just then there was music coming from the stage, so we went over. And there she was, a girl playing a black Rickenbacker. I liked this band. They were The Envelopes of course, and as they started playing one peppy song after the other I felt a bit ashamed I'd never taken the time to listen to them properly. I can't imagine they're that good on record though. The Envelopes must have the best line-up you can think of: three guitars, bassist and drummer - two of guitarists sing, and one of them is a girl. The only thing that could top that is a female drummer, which pretty much beats everything. After they packed up we were surprised to see members of SLGTM wandering aimlessly around the stage. Were they playing before First Floor Power? Apparently. We sat through the tedious Cover Versions Quiz, which I never recognise anything in. I don't hear any music apart from what I play at home and there's a lot of Better Music to listen to. SLGTM said they were ready, and so were we, right in front of the stage. There's not much more to say - they played, we danced. They didn't have a bassist this time, but I don't often hear music that danceable. See, you don't bass in a song to be able to dance to it! About midway they announced that this was their last tour - i.e. their last gig in Sweden! I'd seen them twice before, but that's not nearly enough. Me and Nils-Martin were shattered, we just stood there with our hearts half the way broken. For the rest of it I felt a bit more restrained, just trying to take in as much of it as possible. Reaching for the camera that wasn't there. Betty Marie's hair was so perfect, and Fred is always cute. Two Velvet Underground covers later, my spirit was back up again as they concluded with "Alcohol", pretending to grant a request, but as you can see it was on the setlist really. They came back in for a double encore, and I was happy. It would be impossible for First Floor Power to follow this, and it just wouldn't be right. So, pretend this was the headlining gig, and go home. It was just the saddest, perfect ending. We spoke to Fred for a bit, Nils-Martin getting his second self-portrait, and both of us getting free T-Shirts. They were trying to get rid of them, he said. What were they thinking? A pop band printing tees in sizes bigger than M! I took a pink L one that I hope will shrink. I cycled home with the T-Shirt on my bike rack. There was an ambulence on it.


andy said...

I was rather.....flustered, and generally very disappointed, when I read the review in today's paper. Not a word about neither Envelopes nor Saturdays! That girl at the magazine has no shame. I am thinking of emailing her! POP!-fan my ass....

The Boy and the Cloud said...

i'm lucky i don't get any papers. saves me a lot of disappointment!